A Day in the Life of an Inner City Street Dweller

downtown-denverYou rural folk at The Grow Network are kind enough to explain the way you live out in the country, so we inner city street dwellers would like to return the favor. So sit down in a comfortable chair and hold on tight, because it’s gonna get bumpy.

The first thing we do when we get up in the morning is lollygag around. We don’t have a job. Why not? We’re too screwed up to hold a job, or a relationship for that matter. We’ve got psychological problems, personality disorders, and physical illnesses. How do we live? We have an agreement with Uncle Sam. He gives us welfare and we don’t riot.

Next we have some breakfast, either overripe bananas, including the peel, or the super food smoothie left over from the evening before. We also have some chia seeds and coconut oil. Then we leisurely stroll on over to Natural Grocers. The first five blocks are through a very good neighborhood full of beautiful gardens. The next five blocks are just the opposite, full of the worst casualties of civilization. When we get to Natural Grocers we get a free cup of coffee from the community room. We deeply inhale the “try me” chamomile essential oil, and apply some very expensive facial creams from the “try me” tubes. Then we go sit down in the book section and study for a while.

Next we go shopping. Every morning we get 4 lbs of lentils and 1 lb of raw sunflower seeds, more on that later. Then we replace whatever we are out of like sucanat, coconut flour, and chia seeds. If they have overripe bananas we get some. If we need an onion we get one and we add a bunch of dry skins to the bag because they are chock full of our favorite flavanol, quercitin. Every 2 days we get 2 gallons of water from the machine.

On the way home we stop off at the park and do some one legged squats on a brick wall. Why do we need the leg strength? So we can run away when some maniac who has been lifting weights in prison picks on us.

When we get home, we fill a back pack with 10 lbs of sprouted lentils. We put 4 lbs of new lentils in a bucket and add 1 gallon of water to make a new batch. In the Natural Grocers bag we put some sucanat and the 1 lb bag of raw sunflower seeds, along with a smaller bag containing a mixture of raw cocoa powder, coconut flour, and food grade diatomaceous earth. We add a mixture of raw grass fed whey concentrate, sucanat, colostrum, and some sports supplements to the last of last night’s super food smoothie and drink that.

Around ten o’clock we are off to the mall. Ten blocks later we are at the corner of Broadway and Colfax. Here we stop to feed the large flock of pigeons the sprouted lentils and sunflower seeds. Why? So we can experience the joys of agape love. These pigeons spend their entire lives suffering while they survive because the scraps they eat don’t contain enough nutrients. We are the heroes who rescue them. All along the mall the small flocks fly in front of us to get our attention so we’ll feed them.

Do the gang bangers pick on us? No. They like to socialize with their buddies. They have an agreement with the police. They can hang out at their favorite spots as long as they don’t pick on the passers by.

Next we walk the mall for approximately 8 hours looking for food in the trash cans. Why? We did this when we were homeless and it got to be a habit, and besides that it’s fun. We end up walking twice as many steps in a day as the average Amish. What do we think about all this time? We meditate on the virtues, acquire good moral character, and achieve peace of mind. We also imagine that we are hunter gatherers, hunting for bargains and gathering goodies. The whole time we are walking, we are advertising God’s goodies. We have decorative signs tied to our back packs that say “Natural Medicine.”

Where do we pee? Why, in the alley of course. Along 17 blocks of the mall there is not 1 public restroom. We can’t go into the restaurants because they are for patrons only. We freeloaders are persona non grata. We have been eighty-sixed from 2 book stores and several coffee shops. When the temperature was 10 degrees below zero we were booted out of the bus station. Eventually we get caught and fined for peeing in a public place. Then we get thrown in jail because we either don’t want to pay the fine or we can’t afford it.

Around six o’clock we go back home. Home is a 100 room hotel. The owners and staff treat us like kings so we just stay there. Then we study newsletters in our email inboxes, watch TV on Hulu, and we make another half gallon super food smoothie. We go to bed and dream of a place where nurturers give everybody emotional support, and facilitators give everybody bottom up management – a place where everybody is full of love and laughter.

Thanks to Mike63Denver for participating in the [Grow] Network Writing Contest. We have over $1,500 in prizes lined up for the current writing contest, with more to come. Here is a list of the current pot of prizes:

– A 21.5 quart pressure canner from All American, a $380 value
– A Survival Still emergency water purification still, a $279 value
– 1 year of free membership in the [Grow] Network Core Community, a $240 value
– A copy of The Summer of Survival Complete Collection from Life Changes Be Ready, a $127 value
– 2 copies of the complete Home Grown Food Summit, valued at $67 each
– 3 free 3 month memberships in the [Grow] Network Core Community, valued at $60 each
– The complete 2014 Grow Your Own Food Summit interview series, a $47 value
– 4 copies of the Grow Your Own Groceries DVD video set, valued at $42 each
– A Bug Out Seed Kit from the Sustainable Seed Company, a $40 value
– 4 copies of the Alternatives To Dentists DVD video, valued at $32 each

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  • Willow says:

    Honest, interesting perspective. Thanks for sharing

  • Shannon M says:

    Mike, while you are a survivor, I want your dream to come true! I’m doing what I can through development of a new social facility, an indoor public garden where people gather to grow food all year through and learn and laugh and share meals… Indigenous people already do it – one facility close to me is closing down to consolidate with their other office. I’d like to take it over but not yet. No money… Spirit will provide – you understand! Come visit ourheartgardens.com to get a virtual tour of the dream I hold.
    Bless you, and all you do…

  • Robin says:

    Mike63Denver: THANK you for that.

    “The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” ~ William Arthur Ward

    1. Robin says:

      Mike63Denver wrote:
      “We have an agreement with Uncle Sam. He gives us welfare and we don’t riot. ”

      I just re-read this and I feel the need to add a Post Script: “Fabulous”

      I live in the Maine woods. I’d be homeless too, if it weren’t for my shack-in-the-woods on 5 acres (@ $3,200 in the 1980s). I have usually found it’s easier for me to be poor and live in the woods than poor and live in “the city” (not to mention the air, water, safety and {hu-man} noise issues).

      1. Robin, you sound like you are living a very interesting life. I hope to see an article or two from you!

  • d. Lee says:

    I have been doing prison ministry for over fourteen years and I tell the inmates: if you think you have it bad and feel sorry for yourself, there are many people who sleep on the streets and don’t know where their next meal is coming from. At least you have a place to sleep and three meals per day.

    1. I knew a man who intentionally got himself locked up for the ‘three hots and a cot’.

  • Jacqueline says:

    What a sad commentary. Scary when you think that these people are degenerating, not striving to support themselves. No interest in independence, just soaking those who do work. Sorry way to live.

    1. Mike63Denver says:

      Work is a four letter word and my mama told me not to cuss. I’m just doing what my mama asked me to do. All kidding aside if I worked I would also be pissed at the lazy bums who don’t. For your information the 63 in Mike63 is my age. I actually get retirement. I confess I actually fudged a little on the facts. I actually mingled facts with some fiction. I was trying to make the article exciting. Gardening is about doing chores. Writers try to make the article interesting by being eloquent. I was trying to make the article interesting by being exciting. Marjory chose to delete a couple of exciting stories because she thought they were too much for this website. Liberace once said “the more extravagant the better.” Jerry Seinfeld had the number 1 show on tv and some of his stories exploded like super novas. I am just thankful that she gave me a wonderful place to grow as a writer and I hope to make my next article even more exciting and even more entertaining and even more enjoyable than this one.

  • CaptPuddles says:

    I left the squatter’s life for the rural mini-farm. Interesting article.

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