==== ====Story of a homeless van manhttp://www.empowernetwork.com/almostasecret.php?id=jds2012==== ====Homeless tip 1: Know the difference between being a bum and being homeless! Im homeless butnot a bum! I have drive, ambition, dreams, and determination! A bum has none of these things. Abum has settled into his life on the street and is fine with it. A bum is the same guy you see everymorning sleeping in the same bus stop day after day...... because he doesnt move far. A bummight even have a house and job! Anyway you slice it... if you are on the street know what youare. Are you homeless? Or are you a flat out bum? Knowing that difference is important.Homeless tip 2: Do not buddy up! Very bad idea. And stay away from other homeless people. Donot look for skid-rows, homeless camps or any other place where homeless people "squat"! Theonly time you should ever be around anyone homeless is when you are in line at the soup-kitchen.THATS IT! The reasons are simple...... Its a quick way to get hurt or stolen from. Not to mentionthat these people will do nothing but hold you down and pull you back. They dont want to see youmake it and will do anything to hold you back and slow you down. You are on your own and youMUST stay that way. Dont let anyone get in your way. Its never fun being homeless and lonely butthis is not time in your life to be trying to make friends. And simply put a friendship of this maturewill never work for you. Just stay away from them. you are better off!Homeless tip 3: Travel light! You wouldnt believe how many homeless people Ive seen witheverything they own it seems. Having lots of stuff is not worth it on the streets when you have nohome. I once meet a couple. A husband and wife team. The story they has was that he was atruck driver and she lived in the truck with him. They lived like that for some time over a full year.The whole time they spent money on crap they didnt really need in the first place ("what-nots" Icall them). So they had no money. One day after a truck run that ended in Santa Anna, Californiathe husband was fired and told to leave the truck where it was. I dont know how thats legal butthey where stuck. And they had everything from that truck with then. Makeup, cloths, books, and awhole bunch of other stuff. These two seemed to have bag after bag of stuff. When you are on thestreets you need as little as possible. Think 50 pounds in weight. This is what you absolutely need:- clean clothing -hygiene products -a phone (even if it is shut off) -a resume (because you neverknow) -2 or 3 garbage bags -and if you like to read....... the Bible!Homeless tip 4: If you are caught in the rain and have one one garbage bag do not but holes in itand where it like a rain coat. Instead, cover your shoes and feet! If you can keep your shoes andfeet dry when use it as a rain coat. Any homeless person will tell you this: when you are homelessthe most important part of your body is your feet. Wet shoes and feet do not mix. If your walkingaround with wet shoes you will get blisters and sores. It will be the worst pain you feet have everfelt do to rain. Every step you take will be a nightmare waiting for you. Besides, rain will rot yourshoes faster. And the last thing you need is to be homeless, with blistered feet, and no shoes. Ifyou do get cough with wet shoes get them off ASAP and dry them out. Like I said.... any homelessperson will tell you this, that I promise!
Homeless tip 5: Stay clean!!!! As much as possible! Its not easy but you must! Staying clean givesyou access to things you will need and trust me when I say.... you will need! I know its not easytho! My advise is to take full advantage of every public bathroom you can, to the fullest. Use thesinks and soap. brush your teeth and wash your hair. The trick here is to be fast and unnoticed (soyou can use it again). Try not to make a lot of noise. Wash the parts of your body that need it themost first (armpits, feet, private parts) and wash everything else after if you have the time. Do thisas often as possible. A clean pan-handler with make more then a dirty one (Im not down forpanning, thats just a good way to make my point on this). And remember the more private thebathroom the better, look for locks and cracks on the door. A solid door, one person bathroom,with a lock is the bast. Just be fast about it.Homeless tip 6: Outlets...... find them! Remember I said you need your phone with you? You needit rather it has minuets or not. Your phone is very handy. It has all your friends numbers in it, youcan also store new number if you need to, its an alarm clock (which you will need), its yourcalender, and your clock is always handy. Your phone is a must have, dead or alive! But you mustkeep it charged. Find outlets! They are everywhere, just look for them. You can find a lot of themin front of stores, around phone booth, and other random places. When possible use then in fastfood restaurants like McDs or Burger King. If you have the money bye one item off the dollar menuand spend a long time eating as you charge your phone. Try no to just go into a place just to do it.And avoid sitting right in front of the workers. Usually they wont bother you anyways, but no needto draw attention. If you are using an outside outlet just try not to get cough. Sit in front of it and doyour best to make like you actually have a reasion to be there. Do what ever you can to keeppowered up. My I power my phone and computer mostly at McDs. They know people are gonnause the free WiFi here. I buy one double cheese burger and a drink and spend a few hourscharging my phone while I blog and do other things that I hope will get me off the streets. Staycharged any way possible!!!Homeless tip 7: Reorganize often! Once every 3 days or so I take 30minuts out to go through allmy stuff and reorganize. It helps keep me sharp, fast, and feeling better about my livingconditions. Even homeless people collect garbage over time. Get rid of it! You dont need it! I haveabout mmmmmmmmm 12 pockets on my backpack. I know whats in every single one. If I needmy chap stick..... there it is. You never want to have to shuffle around and take out your stuff to getwhat you need, ever! Its embarrassing and it lets everyone know what you have and how you are(someone living out of a bag). So, keep it clear and keep it light.Homeless tip 8: "The homeless credit card"! What? LOL, let me tell you1 One night a few yearsago I was scoping out a "spot to squat" (that also is another tip). It was kinda dark out and I wasvery tired. I keep noticing this woman watching the same spot. After some time she came over.She know I was homeless.... because she was to. And she know we where both doing the samething. We got talking a little and decided to share the same spot for the night. Usually I wouldnt dothis but I gave in this time, we where both in need and she seemed nice. We did not have sex ordo anything like that. We just both needed the same place for the night. We shacked up for thenight! Inside the spot she told me her story. She was a bum! She had been on the street for about20 years or so and had no drive or ambition to to leave. She was kind of a hippie I rememberthinking to. NOT that being a hippie had anything to do with it. Well, being a bum and surviving 20years on the streets you can believe she was a wealth of knowledge. After she told me a storyabout how she once ran into Will Smith and his son she told me about "The homeless credit card".
"The homeless credit card" consist of two things. A black sharpy, and I piece of cardboard. I knowwhat your thinking "Ive seen this several times". Im sure you have. But I doughty you have seenas many as the kind she had. She had an approach. What she would do was write on thecardboard EXACTLY what she needed. She NNNNNNNEEEEVVVVVEEERRRR asked formoney. Why? because she didnt need it. What she did need.... toothpaste. A sleeping bag, a hairbrush, shampoo, even a cheeseburger. And she always got what she asked for. Every time!People are feed up with the homeless asking for money all the time. With this recession things areever worse and people are even tighter with money. But, people are kind hearted (I believe thatvery much) and are willing to help someone in need out. They just dont want to toss away theremoney. As a homeless person you just have to understand that, understand that quickly, andmove on. No one is going to hand you a woad of cash (unless you get very lucky, dont hold yourbreath).My friend for the night understood that. And on every card she made she was very specific aboutwhat she needed. If your in need you should be to. People will help!I never saw her again. Through out the night I seemed to grow on her and I think she was startingto like me a little. The next morning she asked me to wait for her while she want across the streetto a hotel and got us some free coffee. Me, following one of my major rules....... left!Homeless tip 9: Know your surroundings. When you are homeless and on the move it is very easyto wind up in the wrong neighborhood. Always be aware. If someplace you just walked into makesyou feel unsafe.... get out! trust your gut and avoid the risks. I didnt always follow this tip myself.And I had to learn to trust my gut a little bit. But now I know. I once had a friend that lived in a verybad neighborhood. She was new there herself and told me several times it was bad. However shewas helping me. I wound up going through this place about 5 times. Three of those times was inthe day. During the day it wasnt so bad but I still had a bad feeling about it. But the two times atnight I was scared out of my mind. People where everywhere. And by "people" I mean drugdealers and gang bangers. Im a white, and I was clearly in a place where white people werentliving. Im not resist by the way but safe is safe.... and I was not safe! Now, the last time I wantthrough I got stopped..... by about 5 cops! They where just standing around on the side of theroad. They stopped me when I walked bast them. They patted me down (with my hands behindmy head), got my i.d and other info, want through my stuff, and let me go! They where asking mequestions like what I was doing there and had I been "taxed". I had to ask him what that meantbecause I told him "yes", "I get taxed every day", LOL! These cops where the only ones that gaveme any hard time at all. Now, I never want back there because they told me not to (at least not atnight) and after I left and had a second to think about it all I figured they where right and Ishouldnt. Not because of the gangs on the street, but because those cops exposed me. You see,when I was walking through this place no one messed with me. The reason was because theydidnt know me and didnt know what I was doing there. I just walked straight through and got towhere I needed to go. Without relieving what I was doing..... I tricked them. I didnt act scared. Ididnt "eyeball" anyone. I simply want about my business. And thats what you should do in thissituation. If you find yourself in a bad spot do NOT panic. Do not talk to anyone, that will exposeyou. Simple walk out! The cops exposed me. Had me standing on the corner,in front of everyone,and let me go. What that told the people of those streets was that I was a guy that was not intotrouble, had nothing to hide, and didnt belong there. I asked myself what I would have done if Ihad been stopped by someone out there. What I would do is this: quickly ask him (or her) where Icould get 300$ worth of crack, and ask him (or her) if they could meet me there in 30 minuets
while I ran home (around the corner and down the street I dont know because Im new there) andgot some money together. I would then ask for a phone number (in case I get lost on the wayback) and walk away like Im on a new mission in life.Homeless tip 10: Scope out your spots. Do this from a distance and make sure no one knowswhat you are doing. Watch for people going in or around the spot. Watch for cops. Watch foranything that gives you any idea about how early you need to be up in the morning. Look forresources that you might be able to use around the spot (sink, charger, things of that nature). Findsecurity in the spot. How well lit is it? Will anyone see me? Is there any kind of lock? Will I besafe? will I be worm? Ask yourself these questions. Sometimes you might get a good spot.Sometimes you might have a bad spot. Safety should always be your first concern. Scope it outand ask yourself these questions then make a decision. And remember, have more then one spot!Intel you actually win the fight you will need as many spots as you can! Homelessness is not aneasy life!Homeless tip 11: I tell you all the time the image is everything when you are homeless. And I alsotell you all the time to stay away from other homeless people (unless you are pumping them forinfo, homeless people are a wealth of information about resources). But somethings you just plainrun into homeless people that know you are homeless. DO NOT BEFRIEND THEM. But its OK tobe cool with them for a minute or two in passing. Its kind of good for you. It keeps you on a train ofthought that says "hey, your not the only one". Sometimes I feel like Im the only one. Its easy tostand on a street corner watching the cars go by and say to yourself "why me". That will bring youdown and as a homeless person you cant afford to think like that. And besides "who cares" "whyyou"? It happened and thats all there is to it. Just remember that you are not the only one outthere on the streets. I still stay stick to yourself. Im heavy about that. Thats for survival reasons.But there is no shame in lifting someone elses spirits and saying "ya man, Im like you! Just tryingto get bye. You are not alone".Homeless tip 12: Dont take what you dont need! This woman in the blazer was not gonna giveme money. But she know I wasnt going to take it as well. This whole thing was about a minutelong. Inside that one minute I earned her respect and possible changed her view on homelesspeople. "How could a homeless person not except what he and I both know he wants, rather heneeds it or not"? Truth be told, I did want money! But I had some and know that nothing she gaveme was gonna make my night better. Thats why I wasnt going to take it if offered. The respect Iearned from her was priceless anyways! Respect will probably not get you off the streets. But theaffects of being respected by others is worth wild.I dont talk about being homeless. Ive gone long periods of time being homeless with large groupsof friend that never know. I hide it very well. Id rather do things the hard way. How can I maintainsomething that was given to me when I couldnt maintain the same thing when I earned it beforeby myself?So, Dont take what you dont need just because you can. And earn respect! This will help you feelbetter about being homeless. Homeless people often feel they are being looked down on. I dontfeel that way. I will be respected! I will stay focused!Homeless tip 13: Never invite another homeless person into your spot. As much as Id love to say"hey man, I know a better place! Come check this out" I know that will only lead to trouble. Every
time I leave a spot I clean up my stuff. I do this because I dont want anyone to know I was there. Icheck and check and check to make sure that my time there is erased completely. I leave nothingbehind. When you invite another homeless person into your spot basically have to tell him (her)the house rules. And watch over them. Now you have to double check they didnt leave anythingbehind. I"d set some rules like this:1) Dont go there before 10:00 pm!2) Dont smoke!3) Dont tell anyone!4) Be gone by 5:20 am!5) pick up your stuffSimple, however I can promise you that within two week you have this: You show up at 10:00 pmon the dot and there is already 3 other people there. They are all drinking and smoking. Its like alittle homeless party. The place is trashed with spilt beer and ash. You friend you told first doesntknow what to say to you. No one is listening to you. It smell, and you knows that not just acigarette they are smoking. Now you see flashing lights. Now you are all arrested and going to jail.You lost the spot. Never invite anyone into your spot. Its one thing for you to get into trouble onyour own. But its another for you to get into trouble because of a bunch of other homeless people!Homeless tip 14: Have fun in your down time. I know this sounds funny but I do believe it issomething you must do. Time for homeless people is a little different then the time of an averageperson. However, homeless people to wind up with free time (usually on the weekends). And I saythere is no harm in doing something for you as long as its not going to make your situation worse.Read a book! Go to church! Maybe see a friend or family member if you can! Make a phone call toa loved one! Hit the beach if possible! What ever it take to free your mind from the stresses ofbeing homeless and makes your free time go faster for you.If any of this helps you then Im glad. Sorry about the bad spelling and grammer. Im not a writer(at all), LOL! I cut this all from my blog that you can read (if you wish) at:http://www.homelessrobshome.blogspot.comArticle Source:http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Robert_J_Rashford==== ====
Story of a homeless van manhttp://www.empowernetwork.com/almostasecret.php?id=jds2012==== ====