Archive for the ‘Local Writer’ Category

Vagabond Mail Service Finder and Helps with ID Problems

Tuesday, November 29th, 2011

Free Services and additional services are:

  1. of course, 2 stamps and 2 envelops every week at the local jail house, if housed.
  2. Saint Vinnies’ (Service Station) at 450B Hwy. 99 N, Eugene, OR 97402
  3. Some churches have mail service for temp usage. Check out your local kind.
  4. Use the services at White Bird Clinic at 341 E 12th Ave Eugene, OR 97401. They have a call in to check service too, for messages and mail or packages.
  5. Senior Disabled Services, for special purposes, can also help with getting ID for seniors and disabled at 1015 Willamette St., Eugene, OR.
  6. Oregon DHS have services available, but you have to be in programs or receiving Oregon food coupons. Located on West 11th and at  Garfield St. where West 11th becomes a 2-way again.

There are more. Look and if you find more, please let us know so we can keep the info up to date. Hard work.

By J-Me

Reality

Monday, November 21st, 2011

Reality is:

When water comes out of the faucet, lights come on bright & don’t go out, you don’t have to use your flashlight to c what you are doing.

Wow – how much this all sounds like most of u but us out here well that’s another story. We out here don’t know what it’s like to have running water, electricity & believe me us that have lived here on these streets really do appreciate the luxuries of real home living.

Go from sleeping bag & backpacks to queen size bed, sheets & blankets & all the finer things in life it’s all called –

Appreciate!

 

By Poison

Picture the Worth of a Soul

Saturday, November 12th, 2011

When people, in general of course, think of a typical homeless person, they get a picture in their head of a dirty addict that don’t take showers and don’t care how they appear or act. At the time I became homeless I left with only the clothes on me. I wasn’t sure where to go or what to do. Being scared I didn’t want to think, because I too at one point had the stereotype image in my head. Once I found the things I needed around me to be okay, I became less and less afraid. I also learned that there are several images of a homeless person. There are the people with real addiction problems that don’t remember to shower. There are those too with addiction issues that do shower and go to clothes closets and do their laundry. There are ones that are able to get into a shelter and able to get help, but still don’t take care of themselves. There are families living out of the car, because their father’s job moved across the seas. They’re the people who are unable to get the medical and mental help they need, but have no insurance. Point is they are human, worth no more nor any less than anyone else. No one asks to be homeless and in one day anyone can be.

By Dawn McLaren

 

Finding Camp by D.W.

Friday, November 4th, 2011

Being able to find a place to camp around Eugene without being ticketed is impossible. Me and my husband found a place and haven’t been bothered yet. Its not as bad as it seems. We have been at our spot for about 2 weeks. I believe it is to live or to be hunted give or take it how you want it. Working for the Vagabond has made it easier for me to eat, sleep and work by knowing that when I wake up I have something to me me out of trouble by working for  the Vagabond. I leave my camp at 11:00 in the morning and sell papers till 6:00 and design t-shirts for the basketball jerseys, which will be for sell at our booth throughout the week.

I heard this morning from a fellow homeless person that in the parks and open spaces, people are out hunting for homeless people camping. I’m sorry, illegal campers. I see everyday the bicycle cops handing out tickets to homeless people. Some of the tickets, like drinking in the park, are definitely worth writing. I mean, as far as having a balanced out society, sober vs. drunk. But to see these cops writing out trespassing tickets for people sitting on a concrete curb between dinner and the liquor store? Come on people. Is it really necessary? To watch 5 bicycle cops and the paddy wagon pull into the park that sits right across from the court house and tell the homeless kids that they can either leave now or go to jail. Not only is that blatantly outright bullying, but is is unconstitutional. To harass people with backpacks is unconstitutional.

Under the Bridge

Monday, August 22nd, 2011

Every Tuesday afternoon David Gerber, publisher and editor of the newspaper,  meets with some of Eugene’s homeless community, including vendors, under the Washington-Jefferson Bridge to play basketball, chess and hold writing workshops. Here Jason and “Homeless” are writing down their stories, which they will submit for publication in the newspaper, while others play basketball, chess or simply come by to hang with friends.

 

So While You’re Traveling

Thursday, June 23rd, 2011

When you get off the road and enter Eugene, you will notice a few things. One, downtown, two, all the parks, and three, the river. But mainly what you’ll hear about is the Whitaker. All of these places are all what nakes up Eugene. At times there are social settings that haven’t reached the same culture as everyone else in the US.

What occurs in this town while you’re homeless is mainly up to you. All of the mentioned spots are good and a couple bad. Don’t be drawn into downtown’s everyday drama; it has been blown up beyond all proportion. The parks are cool for short periods of time.

Now at the river, you can swim, laugh, enjoy your personal beverages and just have fun. It also can be a relaxing place to tan or meditate.

All these things can keep you sane in this town while you’re here.

The Whitaker is unexplainable, just treat “the Whit” right and it will do the same for you. And remember, friends, winter is coming, so prepare. Everyone is in this together, survive as friends and we will all make it through anything. Fight and we’ll perish. That’s exactly what the Eugene police want, what the taxpayers and all the other officials in this town push for: NO HOMELESS.

So remember while you’re here, the citizens are not just the community, the homeless are as well.

Go Ducks!!

 

By Thomas Templeton

 

Life Is Like A Tree

Thursday, June 23rd, 2011

Our legs are like roots planted firm to withstand wind

Arms are like branches to hold the weight of things to come

Hands are like leaves to cover and provide shade

Fruit is like life that is provided by our living

So life is like a tree, if I could be a tree

 

by Just Me

 

Life Bein’ A Homeless in Eugene, OR

Wednesday, June 15th, 2011

When we first arrived in Eugene we was only going to stay for about a week, then we was headed back to California to settle down. It has been two months now and we are still here in Eugene.

I thought being homeless here would be like it was everywhere else “hard and uneasy.” But it’s not like I expected, it’s better. There are so many opportunities and resources for us homeless it’s incredible. Here in Eugene they have feeds downtown Monday thru Thursday at a diner that serves three sides, which is actually very good food and the people who volunteer are really nice people who take four hours out of their own day four days a week just for us homeless. That should only show that not all people think only of themselves but of others too!

On Saturday at twelve a group of people get together at Washington Jefferson to feed not only homeless but everyone. On Friday the church feeds, so unlike bein’ in California with very little ways to keep from bein’ hungry, Eugene has the best sources for homeless that keeps us striving for another day. Most everyone thinks bein’ homeless means that you’re a dirty and unhealthy bum, but that would be the largest judgment on homeless anyone could ever make. Us homeless in Eugene have almost more resources to keep our hygiene to its max. For example, homeless have the Mission who not only lets us shower but also lets you get clothing and tennis shoes almost when needed. We have the Service Station, which feeds you and also lets you shower, and on top of that, they have washers and dryers, which to me as a homeless is very thankful for the opportunity to be able to experience bein’ homeless in Eugene.

People ask why I chose to settle down in Eugene and I tell them that, because of all the resources, Eugene has inspired me to not just want to better myself but Eugene makes me feel like I have to. That if I can do it anyone can and that is what I feel I should do for myself as a homeless. I want the people who does for the homeless to be able to see me one day soon and be able to say I knew you could do it, all you need was opportunity and encouragement from others. That what I hope for myself is to achieve what I’ve been striving for 27 years of my life, freedom from being under judgment.

By Michelle Gunn

The Many Ways

Monday, June 13th, 2011

I’ve been around, over and over,
Lived many ways, loud and unheard,
I’ve climbed many mountains, fell down many mountainsides,
Walked countless miles, caught countless appreciated rides.

I’ve crossed many rivers, crossed some many times,
Made plenty of dollars, earned plenty of dimes,
I’ve met a lot of people, made many friends,
Some I miss dearly, would love to see again.

Rode the rails many times, thanks Union Pacific,
Loved every loud clank, and the loud engines, to be specific,
I’ve had many good times, most good, some bad,
I’ve never had much but I’ve cherished all that I’ve had.

Some call me a drifter, a vagabond, even a bum,
Many appreciate my way of life, the haters go and they come,
The police always keep an eye on me,
Many wave hello and just smile at me.

So I don’t ever know where I’m going or even what I’m after,
I know I’ll stop one day, that ol’ train will cease to clatter.
But until then I guess I’ll keep the miles passin’,
The next town and adventure is the way of life I’m after.

By D. W.

Home

Monday, June 13th, 2011

I’ve been asked where I’m from. I don’t know how to answer that question. I was born in Coos Bay, Oregon, but by the time my mother died when I was nine, I’d lived in 22 states.

Eugene is now my home. This is a beautiful city with a small town feel. People take care of each other here. If I’m hungry I can get food, if thirsty there is always a water fountain nearby. The people here are willing to share “until the wheels fall off,” as a friend of mine always says. I am proud to call Eugene my home and you all my neighbors.

There is so much love in this town – if you ever need anything all you do is ask and it will happen. I’m still not sure where I’m from, but as far as home goes it’s here in Eugene.

by The Wanderer

The Grand Symphony

Monday, May 9th, 2011

I love the warming centers. I’ve been so cold for so long, never knew I’d miss warm air so much. The ladies there always treat me so nice although I have no idea why. Perhaps they just feel sorry for a lonely old cowboy. But I’ve known so many trails since Oklahoma, and all of the have somehow led me here, to these warming centers in Eugene. They are the best God sent life-savers you could ever imagine. The only drawback is this. There you are, lying on a cot in a large room in the basement of a church, with about 100 other homeless bodies such as myself. As the evening goes on into the early morning hours the place becomes a veritable symphony consisting of a variety of snoring, accompanied by the occasional soft or loud fart. You really have to be there to appreciate the entire concert performance. It’s for real, just like survival.

Actually it’s kind of weird in symphony hall because the entire orchestra is used to being outside in the cold all the time. So the first time that we actually have a nice warm place to sleep we’re just not used to the warm air, creating a situation where you’re almost sweating while trying to get some rest. The experience is difficult to describe, but it’s very true. If you’re not used to warm air, it takes some getting used to. At the same time you certainly don’t prefer to be cold and freezing to death. You just want to survive. Don’t we all… Happy trails until we meet again!

by Cowboy

Single Mothers

Monday, May 9th, 2011

The one thing that I hope we can all agree on is the sadness we feel when we see single mothers struggling to survive on the streets with 2 kids, in a broken down van, with no place to go. It’s something we wish wasn’t true but it is. It’s a fact of life but what are we to do? Smile and walk on by, take her kids and send her over the edge. No, we should stop and ask what we can do to help with some clothes, food, a place to stay, or maybe a job. Be it housework, yard work, or something for a little cash so that the kids can stay warm or eat. What do you think? What would you do? What if it was you?

by Bobie Goddard

What This Newspaper Means to Me

Monday, May 9th, 2011

Regarding my life today working for The Oregon Vagabond, I can say this much – the stories we choose to write for the community are written from the heart, and we don’t mind sharing our personal stories. When I chose to live on the streets, I started out doing a lot of things which today I am not proud of. I started getting into a great deal of trouble with the law. It was getting harder and my luck was running out. Then I was introduced to the homeless newspaper (Street Roots) in Portland. I had been trying many different ways to make a living. One day I went to the office, applied for the job, and got myself a stack of newspapers. Then I had to pick an area where I would stand and hold up a few newspapers for sale. When people purchase the homeless paper, vendors keep all the profits, and buy more newspapers at the print-cost. Now I’m calling Eugene home, and I work for the Vagabond. So please keep supporting our newspaper, the vendors need these jobs and I hope you enjoy reading it.

by Taz

Inspired by Eugene

Monday, May 9th, 2011

The first time in my life at the of 27 years, I decided to take my first stroll out of Indiana, to see what was out there for me! I went from the bottom to the top of Cali by bus, foot and train. Somehow we ended up in Eugene about a month into our tour of curiosity – and who would have imagined that this was the place that would be our choice for living! We’ve been here for about a month and a half, living on the streets, and at one point it felt like we were headed nowhere.

I’d never been to a town where people that are homeless help others until now! We lost everything in a really bad rain and thought we were going to freeze. But as we walked to stay warm someone not on the streets gave us hope & inspiration, by helping us. The next day someone living like us gave us sleeping bags to stay warm! The reason that we’ve chosen to stay here in Eugene is because the people who reside here, both in homes and on the street, always in some shape or form, have a way to give hope and inspiration to all.

by Michelle Gunn