Tag Archive: social assistance

The Modern Beggar’s Opera

 He is now the beggar,

Learning to beg when he came to Tennessee.

A poorer state than his mental was accustomed to;

He came from the sandy sea shores of New Jerzee!

Past lower standard road signs that engulfed him a charity.

Cast off from the casino coast as the beggar in the opera,

A part steeped in challenged integrity.

He learned how to plead.

From courtrooms to donations.

Asking how lives get to this station?

Lines at the food bank,

Social workers and a food stamp.

Massaged not to “worry” through personal indignation.

He became the Master of Ceremonies in the center ring,

Of the Beggar’s Opera.


Act One, Scene three;

Why fly south?

You see in him the modern-day slavery!

To paper the toilet with benefits and not afford to buy a roll.

The playwright casts him impoverished,

 Singing the hills of Tennessee blues.

There is too much of that already;

He’ll not commonly strum a guitar.

Granted a stipend for house rent,

Standing in a line that leads into a former school building.

Now used for adults to cry where formerly did children.

Because of all the years of this play,

He called me to vent and I wrote this for him:

Down and almost out, family had turned their backs;

Broke with no hope and at the end of his rope.

And then….

A sweet freedom angel lands in his inbox.

Sometimes I think that I probably spend more time writing this blog than I should, since I am under/unemployed, vulnerable to eviction and not making any $$ with it so far (any suggestions for improving the latter are healthily welcomed). Mainly, it is a nice writing exercise.

I also spend more time than I should, here as my fifties creep along, in waiting rooms with people with one-third my education, one-fifth of my verbal and communicative skills, babies crying or un-policed playing all over the dirty floors, tousled as I am filling-out forms. White boyz talking “Ebonics”, which I thought was waay out-of-style, all as I’m in search of social assistance that will keep me from being evicted from the house I have rented for the past nine years, and to help paying the utility bills. 

What also jumps-out is how many of these people are seriously overweight and how they do not dress to impress the interviewer.  Even if you have no money, you can still try to look good, right?  One lady comes out of the office praising “God” saying, “Thank you Jesus!” repeatedly.  Obviously she received the good news of approval, that I didn’t when it was my turn – I just got a “referral” to  another agency.  “Arrrgh!!”

This is  not what they sold me on becoming when I was recruited by thee University, and the many other colleges at “college fairs” when I was a senior in high school back in Queens, New York City the early 1970s.  “I must have fucked-up real bad by going into radio broadcasting” , I think to myself nowadays.  Not trying to be “bourgeois” but I didn’t  go to the University to become this person here and now!  Why is this? Because our country has dumbed-down the masses via wretched media bullshit and “reality” TV and created so many obstacles ( like unnecessary “background checks” and getting fingerprinted before accused of a crime) in order to even  become a “tutor” and help those disaffected,  that we “good and honest” people [like me] are dissuaded from going the “distance” on principle, as we were rightfully taught not to sell our souls to “Big Brother” without being charged with a crime up-front!  “Background checking, for what??”  The moderator says, “So if any of you have any red flags out there, you can excuse yourselves now, and if you have any questions about what might a red flag be, you can talk to us off-line.”  Off-line?  We are sitting in a meeting room!  “Arrghh – the future!!”  I write in my notebook.  Since when do we need an FBI-style security clearance in order to be an English Tutor?  “There has to be something else I can do and get paid enough $$ to cover my expenses…”

What is it about President Obama and the mosque near “ground zero’ in lower Manhattan??  Do these guys [Presidents] get into “the White House” and suddenly become stupid??  I ask this because I want to know WHY President Obama just validated what every person who thinks he is a “closet terrorist”‘ or a Muslim sympathizer’s thinking by weighing-in, in-favor of an Islamic “mosque” near where the World Trade Center towers once stood, but collapsed  at the hand of their wayward “brothers” in a perverted form of Islam?  I see that he has the “eggs disease” of thinking that what he has to say is SO important, whatever it is, that even against his better cerebral judgment, he will say it anyway given a lectern, microphone and captive audience.  Only the late President John F. Kennedy resisted this temptation, IMHO. Dumb. If he doesn’t watch -out, he will be hanging-out with Jimmy Carter in the one-term waiting room, I am afraid; “Maybe it is what he wants“, my fiancee` says.  I say, hey folks, like him or not, please WRITE to him PAPER letters en masse! I am told he reads at least fifty per day!  Write letters! Coach the brotha up, and please keep it respectful! My motto: be part of the solution not the problem.

I am the kind who, if you give me directions to your house party once – or if I MAPQUEST it via your request – will never forget how to get back there again (although I might get lost getting OUT of there that first time via people’s ridiculous, libations-laced “distructions” LOL)

So now I encounter all of this advice for me going forward in the post-terrestrial radio DJ era on how to do what I used to do better on the internet. Okay, but nobody is here to take my lame-old middle-aged ass by the hand and show me how to accomplish this!  I would never know how to even surf the i-net except that the kind folks like my ever-loving friend, Sweet D-Nyce at the Atlantic City Free Public Library, et al, were all too willing to help me back in the late 1990s, when I couldn’t even  dream  of owning a PC in my home!

Now that I do have it like that, and write to your eyes right-now, I still wonder, “Where are the home-visits from the PC tutor?”  Like my old Brooklyn homie, Sal Monella used to say about this time of the year, “Time to catch a wave before the summer is over, I guess…rideshare anybody?”

Pickhitt: Cousin Brucie, Dan Ingram, are you still doing “radio”?  And my main Man, Chuck Leonard, of Music Radio 77 WABC of my youth…miss you BIG time.  The above song reminds me of you guys..  You are on my “Wall of Fame” in my home studio.

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