December 15th, 2007

My big day

We got in BIG trouble for taking a picture by this sign at the entrance to range. A tattooed security guard said we were not to pull of the road and get out of our cars EVER.

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Me and my submachine gun. I’m not sure if the instructor always had his hand up to brace us or to stop us from turning around with a live weapon.

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Me attempting to assume the position.

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Thanks to fellow author Mark Schorr for the photographs. Mark also looks much cooler than me with a gun.



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Where do you go after 9 days in the hospital?

Where do you go after nine days in the hospital?

If you are Paul, the 62 year old homeless guy I recently realized lives in my neighborhood, you get discharged to your car. When it is below freezing every night. With a white paper bag containing 13 prescription bottles. Each has its own dosing regimen. Many have to be taken with food. [Full disclosure: there is some kind of terrible irony here.]

Paul said he was diagnosed with some kind of blood disorder that ended in "stenosis." It had something to do with how poorly he has been eating. He gets lunch Monday through Friday at Loaves and Fishes. That's only 5 of 21 hypothetical meals one should eat every week. And he's been living in his car since Aug. 13.

In a way, it was a relief to see him again today when I went for a run. I've been wondering where he is. And he looked pretty good. He got a clean shave in the hospital and his eyes looked clear. He also had huge purple bruises on the backs of his hands from where they put the IVs in. He said he was in the ICU for three of the nine days.

He refused offers of money, food and my phone number. All he wants is a place to live. He got his kicker check from the state of Oregon and his SS Disability has finally been increased. He knows two older guys who are also looking for a place to live. Let me know if you know of any possblities in Portland.

I'm going to try to find him later with a gift card for Thriftway, since that's where he shops and frequently parks his car. He was grateful they didn't tow his car while he was in the hospital.



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