On the Brink of Homelessness: So Why Not Write About It.
A lot of things happen in life. It’s important to understand why things happen and most importantly why they happen when they happen. Out of all times in my life, why am I now most vulnerable to not having a place called home.
Both my parents passed away before I was 13 years old. I was suspended from Hamilton High School (OH) from my Sophomore year to Junior year. I stormed into Mr. Neri’s English class, gave him the middle finger, flipped his desk over, threw his study book on the ground and told him to “fuck off”. This was all after being charged with physical assault. And I got set to JDC.
I wasn’t charged with physical assault. I was in JDC for four hours because the courts considered me an unruly delinquent. Staying out passed your parents curfew is a crime indeed. It’s more onerous than telling your high school English teacher to “ fuck off” or running into a classroom and hitting someone.
That’s not the highlight of my life, but I wasn’t facing homelessness or perpetually broke.
I switched schools. My step-parents said I need to go to a better school. So involuntary, I traded in my Big Blue spirit for a New Miami Vikings I got my first apartment when I was 18.
Almost a decade later, my sister returned home retired from the Army to find out that I have attended New Miami High School. The school is big enough for all elementary, middle school and high school students. My sister asked why I went to New Miami.
My cousin driving his Honda Civic gave us his take: “ I don’t think his parents wanted to take care of him. To be honest ” .
But this still doesn’t explain why I’m on the brink of homelessness now and not then.
Anyways I re-enrolled at Hamilton High School to withdraw and eventually drop out. Why should I stay in school? Rent is due and the Papa John’s in the Kroger’s Plaza on Main Street is offering me 40 hours a week. This was all before the 2008 mortgage crisis.
Then when Bear Sterns folded, AIG needed a $700 billion bailout and I was not considering calling a homeless shelter asking for open beds. My hours were getting cut. I went from 40 hours to 27 hours. I spent most of my Dad’s money on silly things like new blankets, some groceries, rent to cover working part-time.
I left that pizza shop to move into a different plaza with roommates and found a job and retail. Believe it or not, I thought retail was my dream job. You get to work in a union, paid vacations, health care and I thought it was easier than Pizza work. It kinda is but not really.
I still didn’t know how to drive. It’s crazy to have no car but still not get evicted. It’s possible.
My life changed big time when I moved in with my God Mother. She didn’t get along with my step-mother. My step mom accused her of sleeping with her then boyfriend. My step mom was talking to my father online when my mother spent her last days at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center, according to my God Mother. I can’t verify this because when your a child no of this matters.
You think I was keeping tabs on who my father was chatting with on AOL or whether my God Mother slept with a man known to my family as , “That Mexican Guy”. Your fucking right I didn’t keep tabs on that shit. You know what mattered to me then? Pro wrestling , NFL Sunday, Madden, Blitz the League and ESPN’s The Playmakers.
I still could enjoy dirty hits on the PS2 and debate whether Carson Palmer and Chad Johnson were the next Young-to-Rice tandem without worrying about the mundane steps necessary to get a bed at a homeless shelter.
Anyways moved in with my God Mother. I finally had a pair of glasses. I could see and passed my temp test. Failed my drivers test once before passing it the second time. My monthly rent was $240 but I paid $50 weekly for that room.
Oh dropping out of school forget that. I was awarded my GED in 2012. I was told when I was 15 that, “ you have to be really smart to go to college”. He was close to me and still is. At that time he was playing solitaire on his Windows 95. You don’t have to smart to get attend college. The minimum requirements GED or a high school diploma.
I paid only $20 for a college application to Miami University-Hamilton. It’s a regional campus in Hamilton, OH. My uncle and dad attended a chemistry class together when it first opened in the 60s. My dad never finished. He got his plumbing apprenticeship and preached the virtues of a college degree until his death.
Years after him complaining about how not having a college degree gave him only jobs with the requirements of a strong back. I guess no one has a strong back when they turn 50. I turned 23 and Miami Hamilton took me in as one of their own.
That kid that was said fuck off to a teacher, dropped out of high school and was in JDC for staying past his curfew eventually made the Dean’s list second semester. I crashed my 98 Honda Civic, was cited, then wanted to die with Stacker pills, Tylenol PM and Red Wine. Months later spent time in a psych ward. I was medicated for over a year.
This was when I realized that I may slipped through some cracks and end up homeless. Someone told me over Thanksgiving , “ You were a brat when you were younger”. I was spoiled. Anyone who can dodge homelessness, cuss out their English teacher, smoke weed in their teens can perform well academically is a brat. So if this bratty,self-entitled 24 year old can ace his midterms and anoint himself as an academic all star. This guy on the Dean’s List can loose everything.
Now you see why I am brash. I don’t want to loose anything. My GPA sits at a 3.72. I’m three points shy of perfection in my Spanish class and I pissed a professor unlike I flipped off my English teacher.
“ You frustrate me” said my professor. I frustrate everybody. Since I was born three months premature, doctors said I had no chance of living. Police officers told me to straighten up. I ignore people close to me when doing homework. I feel like all the advice I got growing up was like paying for Kroger brand Citrus Drop. It’s fucking generic Mountain Dew.
Why didn’t they tell me , “ You can stay out passed your curfew because you’ll make the Dean’s List someday ”. Instead they told me to ‘wake up’ and that ‘ the more you work the less you get paid’. How’s that RC Cola taste for you.
So what do I need to work on? I’m going to write periodically (hopefully weekly) about the adventures of trying to avoid homelessness with the hopes of getting a degree (Man if I get my graduate degree ).
I’m thinking of setting up a Go Fund Me to raise $570 so I can pay off my rent and avoid an eviction on my record. Here’s my non-generic fucking advice — straight A’s don’t pay your rent.
How did I frustrate my professor you ask? Easy, shitty rough drafts (Trust me I’m not proud). Here’s me doing writing exercise on Evernote by dissecting AP articles. Less wordy, clear and concise sentences will do the trick.
I’ll how to reproject shapefiles in ArcMap tomorrow. It’s almost nap time. I finished my day with over 48 push ups, 40 dumbbell presses on a stability ball, 40 squats, leg and calf raises. My full body routine was squats into shoulder presses 6 times each arm.Tomorrow is one hour on the elliptical before my school.
Don’t forget to tell me how shitty my writing is in the comments section. Follow me on Twitter Clint Combs and remember overnight success is nothing but a myth.