Street Musician Daniel: Rain Extinguishes Plasma Plan

It’s raining hard enough to hear it hitting the asphalt right outside my window; and so, I am not hopping on my bike to go sell plasma, for the second day in a row; despite having managed my sleep schedule so that I was up bright and early.

No bicycles allowed

I got a couple pieces of mail in my box, so I didn’t have to worry about bringing the month old one that I had on me the day before. One never knows how recent a “recent piece of mail” has to be, in order to prove that you live indoors.

As a matter of fact, if I were to become unemployed and homeless, plasma donation would be one of the first things I would think of, in terms of getting quick cash. One of the good things about homelessness is how easy it is to stretch money. Money quadruples in value, at least.

Since you are outdoors, it is easy to kill time dumpster diving, or just discovering things left discarded in various places, as you walk around your environment.

I remember the time I found a paper shopping bag sitting atop a newspaper kiosk or something that had 4 wrapped submarine sandwiches in it, along with a 20 dollar bill. They were “five star” sandwiches from The Verti Mart.

The best sense I could make of that was that it had been placed there anonymously by someone for the next homeless person to come along -I think it was close to Christmas.

I never would have found that, had I been indoors somewhere, flat broke and wishing I had something to eat, and 20 bucks to spend..

But, I guess my point is that I don’t think the recent piece of mail addressed to a person is very reliable proof that they aren’t homeless; Because I would be at the plasma place shortly after becoming homeless, using the last piece of mail that I had gotten at my residence as “proof” that I wasn’t homeless. Then I could donate plasma for however many years I could get away with it, after that went into my file.

But, it is a Friday and even though the heavy rain has stopped and it even looks like the sun might come out, there isn’t enough time now for me to be sure I could make it there by 2 pm

Plus, I don’t have the bus fare on me for the trip back from the place, due to an ill-advised? trip to the store around midnight for a couple shots of Jim Beam. The whiskey made it easier to get to sleep shortly thereafter so I could wake up as early as I did; but put me in a situation where I would have to gamble that the plasma place would take me, and that I would be able to get at the funds as soon as I was done donating.

Plan B was to ride over to Howard‘s house, if I got stuck over there, without bus fare, to try to get a dollar off him. I haven’t seen him in probably 2 years now.. I used to go over there to watch football with him, especially when the Patriots were being televised, but we have missed 2 seasons now; and frankly, I don’t even know if he is still alive. I’m probably going to call his house and tell his housemates (he’s too deaf to use the phone himself) that I found his number in an old phone that I found in the back of a drawer and decided to power up, just to see what was on it -make it sound like I haven’t called in 2 years because I had lost his number, type of thing…

I wonder about why I lost interest in Howard. The only thing I can think of is the communication barrier that his deafness accounts for. It’s hard to have a nuanced conversation about deep philosophical matters when everything has to beed to him shout. It kind of limits the vocabulary to words with less syllables, and maybe I felt I wasn’t getting to know him at any deeper level as time went on.

We sure did have a lot of non verbal adventures when we were homeless together, trekking to Mobile and back to New Orleanshopping trains and even spending some time in Baton Rougeback in 2011.

Now the rain has stopped, too late to make it to Gretna, but perhaps clearing the way to go out and busk tonight. If it wasn’t for that bridge over the Mississippi that bikes are forbidden to cross, the bus fare would be a moot point. I think the plasma place is just 6 miles from here as the crow flies, but the next closest bridge is about 35 miles up the river, and then another 35 miles back after crossing it; a grim prospect for someone who has just had all the proteins removed from his bloodstream…

I guess there is always tomorrow, as Octapharma is open 7 days a week. I think with all the breathing exercises I have done to boost my immunity (and the fact that I probably even have natural immunity to Covid (due to the fact that I wouldn’t even buy a used car from Anthony Fauci, MD.) I could bounce back rather quickly after donating; Probably be able to busk the same night, but it was almost an omen, how it started pouring rain outside just as i was unlocking my door and pushing my bike out into the hallway.

We appear to finally have hot water again. It is probably no coincidence that it has come back on (after about 6 weeks) right before the building is to be inspected. I forgot what day they said the inspection is going to be, but the maintenance people always come around to do a pre-inspection about a week before. They notified us to leave our fire extinguishers outside our doors this morning. Mine was replaced with a newer one, as it is at least 7 years old…

They are going to discover that I have removed both of my smoke detectors, because they were chirping as if the batteries were low, even after I had put new ones in them. I either bought some dead batteries, or there is some way of resetting them that I’m not aware of, like holding some button down for x amount of seconds until a red light flashes, or something. That kind of knowledge is what the maintenance guys get paid “the big bucks” for having.

Another issue is that my alarms are installed about 15 feet up the wall, way up near the 16 foot ceiling, and for me to get at them, I would have to sneak a ladder from out of the maintenance area, preferably at night, and then precariously balance myself on the very top step of it in order to plug the things back in. They are so sensitive that if you accidentally spill something on a heated burner they might go off. That triggers all the alarms in the building to follow suit. Then the fire department is required to show up to investigate, which turns into a fiasco.

Oftentimes the firemen will use their axes to bust a window or two out, ostensibly to allow the smoke to escape, or for fresh air to come in; but just as likely it is to force the management to spend money on new windows, perhaps so they will put pressure on the residents (write ups, evictions) so that they will be more careful around the stove. 99% of the time it is a resident who is so drunk that they pass out on the couch while they are in the middle of heating up some soup or something.

I guess I’ll go up front to ask them exactly when the inspection is due, so I might have a chance to plug the smoke alarms back under the cloak of darkness, rather than have them be discovered unplugged. That might be some kind of crime; or a major violation of the terms of the lease at the very least. You know, the same people that were in your face because you wouldn’t get the vaccination (“Your going to murder my grandmother!”) would be up in arms if they knew you ripped your alarms off the walls because they were chirping right in the middle of you trying to record a guitar part or something (“Your gonna kill us all!”) type of thing…

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