Thursday, September 07, 2006

I Want to Sit on a Curb and I Want a Pet Chicken

A curb in front of 7/11 would be fine.

A curb doesn't have an address. It doesn't have a mortgage. If I park myself far enough away from a public phone booth, no one can call with their demands, or questions. As long as I have enough change for an occasional Diet Raspberry Snapple, and a bag of Crunchy Cheetos I'll be fine. I can get some hot cocoa in the winter, or move to a curb in Palm Springs.

Some people become workaholics when they are stressed. I don't have that problem - well actually - let me rephrase that: I don't have that blessing. I would rather check out, and find a place with no expectations, and no responsibilities.

A curb is a great place to go.

When my son was young, I used to tell him that when he turned 18 we would set him up for life. I would get him an extra large felt pen, and a large piece of cardboard. Then I would take him to the grocery store and get him a shopping cart. All he would have to do is get himself a pet chicken, and he would be set for life.

Back in Oceanside, there was a man with a shopping cart full of all his belongings, and the man had a pet chicken which sat on the handle bars of the shopping cart as he pushed it down the street. Elijah and I thought the man with the pet chicken was cool. I think he had it made. His only cares were his shopping cart, and his pet chicken, but if I were the pet chicken man, I would scale back, get rid of my stuff in the shopping cart, and keep my pet chicken.

I understand how people choose to live outdoors - well maybe not here in New England, but back in California I understand it. No cares, no responsibilities - just a strange socially inept freedom.

I have occasional moments of lapsed living. I am not sure what to do next, choices can be hard to make, and taking action on little issues can take more effort than it seems they are worth. Over the last year the sessions of lapsed living have increased. Could it be that stress strips many people of personal impetus, and drive? Could it be that some of the people sitting on the curbs have given up their mortgages for the free life? I wonder if some of those people left the church for the curb.

I know that I won't check out and take up residence without an address, but I have moments in the day when I really want to sit on a curb, and I really want a pet chicken.


Agent B said...

Good post.

Yeah, I love my wife & kids a lot. And I enjoy my address.

But I don't, nor will I ever mock the guy on the curb with the chicken. If he's got no one to care for other than himself, what's wrong with that?

I've known a few curb guys with carts. They never had chickens. Maybe a dog...

Pastor Phil said...

B Bro,

I sure appreciate you being someone who stands with the curb dwellers, and understands them.