Thursday, January 27, 2011

Plastic Bags Make Warm Toes

One moment he's living it up in Florida; the next moment he's down-and-out in Akron suffering from bacterial meningitis.

One moment he graduated high school with a 4.0; the next September he found himself living in an abandoned building in downtown Akron.

One moment he's fighting for cause and country; later he's welcomed home in a tent by the railroad.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Ransack Beatbox

You can walk the streets of the city and miss some of its most committed residents-- so committed they couldn't leave even if they wanted to. Down narrow alleys, snuggled tight in entryways, hidden within abandoned buildings, wrapped from head to toe in over-sized coats and layers of socks, these residents are the forgotten, the invisible. Realizing their existence is a discomfort. Realizing their pain is inconvenient. But no matter our attitude, they exist. They exist cold, hungry and broken. So we can either ignore for our sake, or acknowledge for all of humanity's.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Pie in the Face

Tonight was mainly a night of rookie HOPE'sters and all shined brightly. The following are excerpts from the scribe book authored by Jordan.

"Mr. Lucas is really friendly. He used to go to Hoban...He was a normal guy and he just fell on hard times."

"We went to a house and we met one of the funniest guys ever: Jimmy. Jimmy was a heroin addict but was taken in by Mama and Papa. Jimmy's a really good guy. He cracks jokes on everyone all the time and tells you how it is...He goes to church every Saturday and Sunday. Jimmy used to live in the doorway of the church for 3 years."

"(Mr.) Horinger, as a joke of course, put a banana pie in Mama's face. Although I thought it was pretty messed up, she was really excited and happy when he did that."

"...we went to St. Bernard's and had an interesting conversation with Tom and Denny about...cows and rabbits...chacha'd...8 to 10."

"We also met Stanford, a new guy who also goes by Stan or Muscles because he lifts a lot."

Thursday, January 6, 2011

New Coat, New Smile

Two right gloves and many more warm coats. Warm noodles + warm smiles = warm bodies. New friends, old friends sharing in a post-Holiday chill. Reminisce, predict and ponder lives. A past full of innocent pastures of horses and goats; a future of puzzling concrete walls and ignoring passersby. A past of frustrating pressure and overwhelming stress; a future of loneliness and and endless questions. But tonight, for a few minutes, laugh and smile and forget.