What follows are testaments to living on the streets of one of the richest and most expensive cities in the world. We do not offer any solutions, opinions, or expert critiques. Given the choice of talking or listening, we decided to listen.
In this issue, we give space to people society has failed, and hope you will listen to them too, and see them for what they are.
People. People who, at some time, perhaps not too long ago, were just like you: safe inside.
Read the full article and the stories of these 11 people living on the streets in SF here: Life on the Streets: San Francisco’s Homeless in their Own Words by the SF Weekly Staff
It’s not often I take the time to really read through long articles or news stories, much less a mini-series. I’ll read the important details, call it skimming, and then slow down to find and figure out the details in-between. I did, however, sit down and take the time to read this article and every single story within it.
It’s fascinating.. and terrifying, and uplifting, and sad, and positive, and every thing in between.
There are different stories.. The folks who were damned from the get-go, then those who had it all and for whatever reason lost it all. Some of the stories are perfectly bland and normal, like talking to any random joe you run into on the train; then some of them are the kind that showcase how different people can be, the far out ones.
It’s weird reading the stories though, like getting to know a homeless person. It’s so easy to just go blind to them, especially here in the SF Bay Area. I work in SoMa, and if anyone is familiar, the volume of homelessness there is dense. I run into so many every single day, it’s like I’m desensitized to it. I barely see a homeless person; they seem to just blend into my surroundings. I can’t decide if that’s for better or for worse.
I’m not sure where I’m going with this post. Lol. I think the series just made me feel some type of way.. Part sadness for sure.. Reminded me that they’re people. I guess that was the goal of the article. I can’t imagine what it’s like. For obvious reasons, the ones that once upon a time had a regular life with a family and lost it all are the saddest and scariest. These are regular people that probably never ever thought they’d end up where they did; it’s a scary thought.
I’ll end this with a friendly reminder to be grateful and thankful for the now and what you have. Life’s too short and the future is too unpredictable.
Hug your loved ones tonight too and thank whoever you need to thank for the roof over your head!