Today I tried to get credit for a couch and chair and was denied.
Later, I received my paycheck where I noticed the address was from North Carolina.
I remembered an expert early on in my reporting on homeless issues telling me re-entry into society is more difficult then becoming homeless.
And I'm one of the lucky ones.
My credit, already mediocre, took a battering while I was out of work for the better part of the last year. So when I went to a furniture store with a nice deal on a couch and matching chair, I warned the saleswoman that my credit was poor. It turned out so bad that each of the two credit agencies she tried turn me down in seconds.
I tried not to slink out of the store but I'm pretty sure I did slink. Or past-tense slunk. (I've always tried to hold my head high but it's pretty big -- lotta work. My head is so big that every time I lay down, I hear a radio announcer shout out, "Oh, the humanity." Too soon for a Hindenburg joke?)
Later, I received a copy of my check and noticed the old address. I recalled when I filled out my paperwork that I hadn't really had an address in a couple of years, other than that of the Bloomington Herald-Times. I suppose I failed to note the problem because I was so happy to have a steady paycheck.
Here I am with an education, a knowledge of systems and a 30-year career and yet I struggle.
Imagine what it's like for those who've battled homelessness for years, or the homeless who have struggled with substance abuse. (I have not -- unless you count tubed and processed meats. Then I have an issue.)
I remain a lucky man re-establishing myself into what some consider respectable society.
Peace and luck unto all of you my brothers and sisters.