The Homeless Survival Guide

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posted on May, 7 2008 @ 09:57 AM
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Originally posted by devildogUSMC


I'm not being cocky lloyd, and I mean no disrespect. I didn't mean to call you out and I am sorry. I just think the guide you have provided is not exactly practical. Maybe for a person with no family, no friends, no skills, no ability to utilize resources, too much pride(living in a hole or on the street)
, a drug addiction, mental disorders, or no desire to live somewhat comfortably. And no I do not mean a "new home", I mean a new place to rest your head at night. There are low cost rooming houses, livable squats protected in NYC under the squatters' laws, church programs, and as a last resort a government program even. The options are endless. I'm not saying don't adapt, you absolutely need to adapt, but not to the stereotypical "street life". Adapt to the situation you are in, which will be different for everyone. You are describing a scenerio where all is lost, the end of the rope. That is not where most newly homeless people will be. Odds are they will have many options to choose from. Maybe they won't be great but better than living in a hole without a doubt. If you have half a brain and you haven't given up, it's easier than you think to get back on your feet, not easy, but easier than you think.

[edit on 5-5-2008 by devildogUSMC]


Well I am glad you elaborated on this some because I found lloyds information very accurate and your information accurate as if your idea of homelessness has some gradient levels and options.

I have been homeless and used the public coin operated self serve car wash bays to shower at night and lived in my car which in many ways is even a bigger pain in the arse than if I didn't have one. I got back up fast as I could and was lucky to do it. I can see how fast you go down when you are down and the longer you are the more likely you will stay there. Homelessness is such a debilitating situation and you have to be so resourceful about things you would have never imagined having to consider. Sometimes I think life woould have been better for us and we would have been happy had we just learned how to live like the American Indian. They were right in lockstep with the rest of nature. I watch dancing with wolves and videos like that and it makes me wonder if all this technology and civilization is really better or just a rat race to keep your stuff.

- Con




posted on May, 7 2008 @ 10:26 AM
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This is my first time to ATS and found it by googling the heck out of Missile Silo on the Today Show over to past two days to see if anyone else thought it was way too suspicious and a precursor to something ugly... This thread however was the reason I registered. What an amazing group of people all of you are who have gone through or are going through being homeless but yet still have the hearts to try to help out other folks here in cyber-land.. My hat goes off to each and EVERY one of you.. This big world is just way too small not to help whoever we can whenever we can and I'd much rather have a good soul than a great bankroll!!

I walked a few hours with a guy who was trekking from Cali to NY and he mentioned sleeping in random overpasses and showed me how there's a little space behind the concrete that with a sleeping bag, can be a great windbreaker, rain shield and so long as the area's not too crowded with other homeless folks, an easy way to catch some sleep in relative anonymity.

I think this is a VERY timely thread and that many folks reading this will remember with fond affection the feeling of "that could never happen to me" somewhere down the road.. Thanks Lloyd for the great post and for all the rest of your comments.. may we all be fortunate to have enough of those things we need most, the wisdom to appreciate what we have, and the hearts to share with others all we can...



posted on May, 7 2008 @ 10:45 AM
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reply to post by Impreza
 


I guess you didn't bother to read the thread. Jail is not a fun place to be.

Regarding family, I can't imagine my family not taking me in. In fact, my sister is trying to buy a house right now and just asked me for money to cover closing costs. I will give it to her no questions asked because that's how we are. I know she would do the same for me in a second. My father has passed but my immediate family has always been very close knit. In fact, I've had people take advantage of me because I've always been giving. I never really cared about that though as I've always been able to make it. I have come very close to homelessness a couple of times though and am by no means well off but I do what I can.

I really feel for those of you who say you can't go to family. It shouldn't have anything to do with pride but as you say, if you grow up in a family that is not close then pride does kick in with them as well. Personally, I don't know that I could go to anyone else for help, but I always know my family is there for me.

I still remember getting a free turkey at thanksgiving from the company I worked for in South Florida. I ate nothing but turkey for a month straight. I made it last. I guess my experience there was a case where I didn't want to go home with my tail between my legs. I felt I would be letting my father down by being defeated. So, I guess pride did play somewhat of a role during that part of my life.

I also have a tip:

If you find yourself laid off or fired from a job that paid you well and you are struggling to find work, always say that you made minimum wage on the applications you fill out. I don't know how many companies turned me down because I was honest about my wage at my last job. They are always sure you will leave in a week because you are used to earning 3 times what they pay. The truth is you are but you can't let them know that. I was able to rise thru the ranks starting at $7.50 an hour after coming from a job that paid me $18.00. This was around 1988 and I moved to Florida on my own. There were some scary moments (not like what others are talking about) but I was able to rent a room from an old Italian couple for next to nothing. They eventually started treating me like one of their own and I ended up having the run of the house and the pool. The most important thing is trust. If people can trust you, the sky is the limit. They would actually go on trips to Europe and leave me in charge of the house. I never let them down and took good care of things.

As many have said, you have no idea just how close you are to homelessness no matter where you are in life right now. One day you're on top of the world and the next, gone!

[edit on 7-5-2008 by jbondo]



posted on May, 7 2008 @ 12:28 PM
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Originally posted by jbondo
reply to post by Impreza
 

I guess you didn't bother to read the thread. Jail is not a fun place to be.
[edit on 7-5-2008 by jbondo]


Hmm, I dont think YOU read the thread.

I dont think anyones arguing wether or not jails a fun place to be, but by way of comparison, neither is being Homeless. In fact being homeless can be life threatening, as my last story. The guy was so cold that he did something to wind up in jail.
Like it or not, jails warmer than January if you don't have a house.



posted on May, 7 2008 @ 01:27 PM
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reply to post by kthulu
 


I've read every single post.

Where did I ever say that it was fun being homeless? I eagerly admitted my fears the times that I was almost homeless.

The consensus I read was that if there was a choice, jail was not the favored option. IMO people should read a thread prior to posting and that was my prompt to the other poster. I kind of got the impression that he was seeing it as a joke and it upset me a little. I could be wrong but I didn't insult him.

[edit on 7-5-2008 by jbondo]



posted on May, 7 2008 @ 02:56 PM
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Kathul (sp),

I lived off of lifting other food items as well. The potato example was just one episode where I had to make the choice of either going hungry or getting arrested. It was hard but I chose to go hungry. THinking back I still think it was the right choice.



posted on May, 7 2008 @ 05:00 PM
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I would like to state, for the record, that county jail is not /that/ bad.

Not only have i been homeless (roughly 2 years) but i've also been to jail (more times then i care to admit). Generally, small town, county jails are decent places. The food is good (and free), the guards are okay, the company is passable and the sentences light. Being homeless up North sometimes means having to sit a month or two in county to avoid the coldest winter months.

I will say though, that having sat in Broward County Jail in Florida, that big city jail is by far one of the worst places i've ever been in my entire life. At least there were guards to enforce some control though. The streets were much worse when i got out.



posted on May, 7 2008 @ 05:47 PM
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reply to post by Lady Lavish
 


County jail is worse than prison. County is funded by the county. Prison is funded by the state. County jail is the worst place I have ever been next to Bosnia. I've gotten to know some of you and I can can tell you that intellegent, kind-hearted people, which most of you seem to be, have a horrible time in jail. I did. Just try and have a conversation with someone there. Most people there don't care about anything but themselves. Also, there is a certain way you need to behave and act to get by in jail; this behavior and the things you experience there will have a lasting effect on you. I don't know what small-town nice jail was being discussed, but any jail is horrible, trust me. It is a horrible experience through and through. Everyone on here usually seems to big a big fan of freedom. I've heard many complaints of how individuals feel imprisoned in our country. Like they have no rights or civil liberties; well jail is alot worse than not jail. You really have to think about this. The last place anyone here should ever want to go is jail. PLEASE believe me.



posted on May, 7 2008 @ 07:38 PM
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reply to post by Lady Lavish
 


I am familiar with both small town jails and the Broward county jail. I agree with you and I was on the outside looking in. It is true that most small town lock ups are not that bad at all but big city jails make you wonder if being outside in the cold is all that bad.

I think I'm going to just say that both sides of the arguments have a point but the bottom line is the homelessness and that is just not fun.



posted on May, 7 2008 @ 07:40 PM
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Originally posted by jbondo
reply to post by kthulu
 



I've read every single post.
Where did I ever say that it was fun being homeless? I eagerly admitted my fears the times that I was almost homeless.
The consensus I read was that if there was a choice, jail was not the favored option. IMO people should read a thread prior to posting and that was my prompt to the other poster. I kind of got the impression that he was seeing it as a joke and it upset me a little. I could be wrong but I didn't insult him.


I did not say anything about you thinking that being homeless was fun.
Please quote me directly if you're going to twist my words around.

How was this considered a joke?

If I ever become homeless, I'll commit a minor crime and go to jail. In jail I'll have food and water, shelter, TV, time to exercise, read a few books, and I might even make a few friends.


Granted he's not talking about the horrors of war, but I think he's looking at the positive side of it. Was it the smiley face?
Again, Jails a perfectly practical option when the weather is bad.

If you let things like this upset you, you probably wont be at ATS too long.
And no one said anything about being insulting.

I've been to 2 jails one on the east coast, one on the west coast, for extended periods. I've been in 3 different ones for overnight stays. I'm not exactly a connoisseur, but I would rather spend a night in any one of them rather than be in the freezing cold by far. Like Jdbondo said, warmer temperature, free TV, and free meals. Cant beat it. Well, actually you can but it takes money...


[edit on 7-5-2008 by kthulu]



posted on May, 7 2008 @ 07:52 PM
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reply to post by kthulu
 


Dude, I've been at ATS for over 2 years and been just fine. As for twisting your words, you are making assumptions as I wasn't trying to quote you paraphrasing or otherwise. I was making a general statement which had nothing to do with accusing you of anything. I think you may be the touchy one here as I was trying to explain myself and move on. I did say that I may have been wrong about him but it would seem that you just don't want to let this pass.

I'm not going to argue with you so go ahead and think whatever you wish. The thread is starting to get off subject and that's not fair to the OP or anyone else here. Lets just move on.



posted on May, 7 2008 @ 08:32 PM
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Originally posted by jbondo
reply to post by kthulu
 


Dude, I've been at ATS for over 2 years and been just fine. As for twisting your words, you are making assumptions as I wasn't trying to quote you paraphrasing or otherwise. I was making a general statement which had nothing to do with accusing you of anything. I think you may be the touchy one here as I was trying to explain myself and move on. I did say that I may have been wrong about him but it would seem that you just don't want to let this pass.

I'm not going to argue with you so go ahead and think whatever you wish. The thread is starting to get off subject and that's not fair to the OP or anyone else here. Lets just move on.


Oh, don't get poopy.

But I agree, lets not turn this into an argument thread. I actually like this thread and everyone has some good advice.

In the end, I think Impreza's comment was dead on.

Also, I'm not your "Dude". Please don't call me that. Appreciated.





[edit on 7-5-2008 by kthulu]


PSP

posted on May, 8 2008 @ 07:49 AM
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You people give some nice info here for homeless people.
I got one point to add for you guys,

If you find a Burgerking or a Mc Donalds that is not always open, almost when its closing walk inside and beg for some leftovers, almost always the have some burgers for you that the didnt sell that day that are still in the warming offen, pretty good to eat and tasty as well.

I did this ones after being wasted coming out a pub at midnight.

Works very well and most of the employes there are pretty kind if you ask me.

just my 2 cents.



posted on May, 8 2008 @ 08:49 AM
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As a smoker I have found that when homeless cigarettes are a valuable commodity. What I did to cut cost down on ciggarettes is I bought a ciggarette rolling machine that takes the tube kind of paper. Then I used to carry around a plastic bag that I would take around to the ashtrays outside of buildings. I would take the "snipes" out of the ashtray and empty the tobacco into the bag.

The innitial setup for the small machine and a box of tubes is around 12-15 bucks but it's well worth the investment. I usually could get a whole pack of smokes out of ashtrays around the city.

Then I would use the recycled tobacco to make new ciggarettes. The box of two hundred tubes ran about 3 or 4 bucks which made it a wise investment. I could sell off some ciggarettes to other homeless people to make up the amount for a new box of tubes.

If you smoke and are homeless you should know that if you open a pack of ciggarettes the chances are real good that people will bum them off of you in quick order. This can get real expensive in short order. Many excuses can be used to ward off the offending party of their request to procure your hard earned smokes.

"sorry this is my last one"

"I bummed this one earlier"

you get the idea. Of course this doesnt work if you open a pack in front of them. So its a good idea to charge a nominal fee for a smoke. The going rate is about .25 for a smoke. This covers your cost to buy another pack.


Oh BTW to steal a line from Dave Rabbit: "Digg this Muttha!"

[edit on 5/8/2008 by whatukno]



posted on May, 9 2008 @ 01:51 AM
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I was homeless to the longest extent I would ever want to be and whole-heartedly hope I never have to go down that path for any long period of time.
I was working in a great job, making very good money and shared a nice 4 bedroom home with some friends. They all moved out one night while I was at work, the next day the lights and water went out and the landlord came over and told me they had vacated and I needed to be out by the end of the day. I had nowhere to go except home to my father (which would have killed my pride completely). I knew I would bust my butt to find something else and save that as the last possible resort ever. My next shift at work turned out to be my last and the weekend was upon me. I stayed in a hotel for the first two days, but decided quickly that my money was not going to last doing that. I had moved everything I could into my car and that became my home for the next 7 days. I was lucky enough to get a job, but it would be a couple of weeks before I would have enough spare money to look for somewhere to live.
After sleeping in my car in parks, parking lots, nodding off in 24 hour fast food places and such, I got a very lucky break. It came after a shift at my new job. My manager saw me getting into my car and asked me why so much there. I played it off as a joke that I lived out of my car. Again, pride came into play. We happened to be side by side at a stop light and he told me to follow him. I did and he offered me a place to live.
I have been doing well since.

I only hope for all of you that find yourself in such a bad situation could have some form of blessed luck as I did. If not, stay safe and remain strong.



posted on May, 9 2008 @ 02:57 AM
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reply to post by LLoyd45
 


Beautiful thread, I never had any such experience but always I reach home very late as i will be roaming in and around the city till late nights with friends and I had seen people who live alone in that open. When night falls, when all negative things starts to appear and if your are alone out there then you are vulnerable to many things which can be life threatening and LLoyd45 I can understand each and every sentence of your post. Thanks for sharing your experience. A Star & Flag



posted on May, 9 2008 @ 04:44 AM
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Fascinating thread; makes for excellent reading!

I’ve always been interested in the subterranean world, from abandoned military silos to coal mines. In pursuing this interest, I and others have stumbled upon often bizarre stories of people living underground. Given the sheer size of the subterranean world, who knows who or what could be living beneath our feet.

New York has a number of stories relating to underground dwellers. A reasonably well known and documented account of this kind of living can be read about here - Dark Days

And Mole People

I live just outside of Manchester in the UK, and for many years I have been aware of Manchester’s ‘forgotten’ underground - Underground City


IT is the hidden district of Manchester that was once home to 18,000 people. These days the cellars, tunnels and subterranean canals have been abandoned to the rats, but the secrets of the underground city have been unearthed in a fascinating book.


The idea that 18,000 people once lived beneath Manchester is fascinating. All it takes is for one or two homeless people to find a way into these old cellars and tunnels and a new subterranean society is born. Who knows, there may be one or two living down there already.


Some of the tunnel systems are almost unknown, even by officials. One, beneath Deansgate, is said to be wide enough for a horse and cart. Part of it linked the present Kendals site with the building which houses Waterstones.


I’d like to think that if I were to end up in a homeless situation, I’d be able to find my way into one of these abandoned subterranean dwellings. Much better to be able to class yourself as a troglodyte!

[edit on 9/5/08 by thebox]



posted on May, 9 2008 @ 10:57 AM
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reply to post by wheresthetruth
 


I guess your "friends" weren't so friendly after all. Actually homelessness is a pretty good way to find out who your friends really are.

I couldn't imagine walking in and finding everyone gone but I have had a similar situation where I went out on a limb and rented a townhouse that I couldn't afford on the condition that a supposed close "friend" was going to move down to South Florida and share the place with me. It took some quick thinking after he didn't even bother to call let alone show up. That was another one of my close shaves with almost being homeless. Thankfully I got a guy from work to move in and it was a blessing in disguise. He was Puerto Rican and introduced me to the Latin culture. I made many friends from South America thru him not to mention the Latin women who hold a special place in my heart to this day. My Latin friends once threw me a surprise B-day part at the beach and I've never had a better B-day in my 45 years. Times of strife can lead you to discover things you may never have otherwise.

Great stories all!



posted on May, 9 2008 @ 01:49 PM
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What is a person to do if you have a dependant and you are now all-of-a-sudden homeless, with no relatives or friends; now you have 2 mouths to feed?


[edit on 9-5-2008 by 38181]



posted on May, 9 2008 @ 02:22 PM
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reply to post by 38181
 


Greetings, I'll go out on a limb here and guess 38181 is a zip code. If this is true that would put you in TN.
After looking a bit...

www.hud.gov...
www.nationalhomeless.org...

I care.





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