May 18, 2007

Tidying Up

There are two posts of mine I want to comment on. One was a stand alone post, the other - well others actually - was part of a series that I meant to finish but don't think I'll be able to. Both deal with ladies I knew or know. One a former lover & the other a good friend.

In my post called When She Was My Girl I told the tale of finding an old lover in the papers for committing some crimes. Since then I found her & talked with her on & off for a few weeks. Her story is a bit different from the paper's version of events. She told me that she did pull a gun on her then b/f & she did run from the cops, but she didn't assault the guy or do anything else they tried to charge her with. She pled guilty to two counts related to her fleeing from the cops.

I asked her how she got into that situation & she explained that when she & I were seeing each other she was just becoming an alcoholic. Reflecting I realized we were drinking most of the time we saw each other. I assumed that was just because of our age & environment, but she was becoming addicted. Anyway the b/f she got in trouble over introduced her to crack. But she didn't just flip out in a delusional high; she says the reason she pulled the gun on him was because she was getting really tired of "having [her] ass beat & left bleeding in the closet while he stole the crack that she bought".

Anyway she did about a year in jail where the prison shrink concluded she was manic depressive. She's been clean & sober since; actually she seems addicted to AA meetings now, which is a much safer addiction than the ones she had previously.

We haven't spoken in months though. There really wasn't too much I could do for her as she seemed to have her life moving in a direction (though not one I was crazy about - but it is her life) & the flightiness that she had when I first met her was there as strong as ever. But she has my number so at least she has the option of calling if she wishes.

The other thing I wanted to comment on was what would have been the third part in a series I was doing. If I Were A Rich Man Part Two: Nobody Loves Me But My Mother was the 2nd part & it has a link tot he first. My idea was to show how bad circumstances mingled with the welfare state can alter an otherwise stable person's view of government.

My friend JD has had it rough. The short version is she was dating a jerk & broke up with him (i.e. kicked him out of her house) after she came to that conclusion. About 2 weeks after she realized she was pregnant. She had the kid & he was very unsupportive. Until the kid was 4 & a half his child support was something like $10 a month in California & he was always several months behind! She was getting by okay as she had a decent job but her industry went through some changes & her contract wasn't renewed. The work she could find after that was 1/2 to 1/4 what she had been making & it wasn't enough to cover the day care costs. She ended up selling her house & getting sucked into California's welfare system. Now she's living in HUDD housing & is being pushed to not work at all in order to qualify for some educational programs that would enable her to get another degree in another field. She's holding on but barely & her hope is low to (at times) nonexistent.

& something tends to happen every few weeks; restraining orders because her neighbor attacked her; her car being stolen; her kid kicked out of school because of medical reasons, etc... So every time I'd think I could finish the post a new component was added.

I plan on going to see her soon & see what I can do for her, or just give her a few days of goofing off instead of being in the grind that she's in, but I'm doubtful I'll be able to do anything concrete, aside from sending her a little cash now & then. I offered to be her room mate if her & her son would be willing to move out here or to some other gun friendly state (she's that good a pal) but because of Cali's child support laws it'd be difficult to impossible for her.

Ya see Cali realized a while back that it's economics were all kinds of screwed up so they made it harder for parents to leave the state with kids while the other parent stayed behind. By doing this they keep people from leaving just because they can provide a better life for their kids in another state (& say about as much in relevant statutes & case law).

The main point was going to be about her political attitudes & explaining how she got where she is now. She sees the problems with the welfare system but she blames the republicans! In California! She's convinced fully that Cali si screwed up & the welfare system is an economic trap, but thinks that the republicans are just as much, if not more so to blame than the democrats in Cali. I think she's fallen for the "do it again, only harder" excuse & that if the corrupt republicans & democrats would administer the thing properly then it'd be alright for her & everyone else.

& just to say it (cause I know what I'd think after I read those last few paragraphs) JD has always busted her ass. From the time she was 20 until she landed a very decent job in her field she was working at least 2 if not 3 jobs. She's not lazy or devious. She has made some bad decisions here & there but for the most part her circumstances were not brought on by any moral or ethical defect. So to see her in the situation she's in with the attitude she has is disheartening to say the least.

But I won't get around to finishing that post I'm afraid.

Posted by Publicola at May 18, 2007 02:51 AM | TrackBack