Tuesday, October 19, 2010


KODGER KING GIVES A PEP TALK. This man speaks for much of the nation. So, beginning here I shall try to do something helpful. What can I do? -- say?---what does he really need? I ask my "good genius" to inspire me.

AND IT DOES----after a time of reflection----and out of nothingness --I get a flash of insight---from the movie "It's a wonderful Life" (remember what happened when James Stewart was ready to fling himself into the river)

Suddenly, I know what to do and say. I put money in his cup---He wakes --I ask permission to photograph --he consents.
I play with him a bit--tell him I can guess his line of work by looking at his hands. He shows me. I guess lumberjack. Not too far off he says---worked in a sawmill.
We briefly traded stories--then I told him I needed some help---that I needed a place to park in Yreka and a place to get some good water. He told me where the truckers sometimes park and where water was available.
I thanked him---told him I couldn't afford expensive RV parks and preferred to boondock. Look at his face and see if you notice a difference from the first photo. I say dignity--for the moment at least --has been restored. Werner Erhard said it best: " all you ever wanted to do was contribute".
RANDY COMMENTS: I've tried an assortment of pep talks ---giving this guy a chance to connect and contribute ---pleased me most. Incidentally, I found the parking spot and the water place in Yreka that he told me about.


Debbie said...

God bless you. This is a very inspiring post. For the moment, I agree, you gave him something he needed.

New reader here from North Carolina...look forward to more!

Dixxe said...

I agree-he feels good because he could help you and forget his own decisions/choices for a moment--
and a Kris Kristofferson's song comes to mind
"Freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose."

Rustedgranny said...

I intend to keep your lesson in mind. Making someone feel better about themselves is an easy fix and good for both parties.

Anonymous said...

Just another professional bumb. To lazy to get a job.


Anonymous said...

Pretty judgemental! We don't know why he's a bum. With nearly 10% unemployment for going on 2 years and a lot higher in some places, he might have tried and tried to find a job. In any case, giving someone who's down & out a sense of dignity is a gift to both the giver & recipient. Much better than scowling.

Anonymous said...

Maybe before you mean mouth another person, learn to spell - you might need a job someday.


Jim said...

Actually, Arlene, yours was *my* initial reaction (before I read your comment) . . . I was thinking, "Looks like somebody is too lazy to learn how to spell."
All who wander are not lost. I've been lucky enough in life (attractive, smart, but not rich = having two of the big three determinates for 'ease of life' in these Corporate States of Amnesia) that I've never had to panhandle and I can think of a thousand things I'd rather do to make money BUT to accuse every homeless person of being "too lazy to get a job" is just an unthinking cheap shot. It's the kind of knee-jerk reaction we've come to expect from those who aren't very well educated.
It seems our specie is hardest on the social class just barely beneath our own. Maybe someday we'll get over our bad selves and do a little hop/skip/jump on down the evolutionary path a bit, but I won't be holding my breath!

Anonymous said...

Well said Jim.

Before being judgmental, I try to remember a phrase that I learned many years ago.

"There, but for the Grace of God, go I"

We never know what lies in our path during our lifetime.


Anonymous said...

Good for you, Randy. It's true that most people don't even look at homeless people. Just looking them in the eye while talking is more than they get most days. Human exchange and a connection of any sort can change things sometimes.