Rich People Blues

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Every hobo knows if you are going to be happy, you are going to have to deal with those rich people blues.

When I first came off the streets after seven years in the wilderness so to speak, I considered myself a genuinely happy person. Occasionally I had moments of shame and depression some of them pretty deep actually, but God is my friend and where I put my trust. I woke up every day, and after a cup of coffee and a cigarette or two was ready to enjoy whatever the day brought my way.

I try and follow my friend the best I can and after a couple of years felt led to get back out there. I was also itching for adventure. I think all humans do, and if you don’t scratch that itch, things are in danger of going stagnant.

My first time around I never went into big cities for some reason. When I arrived on the streets of Portland I was shocked about how many homeless people there were, lots of women and kids to boot. I was also shocked about how ignored they were by the general public. I have to admit I was angry, enraged in fact by the abuse hobos were taking. I started resenting rich people. I knew this was wrong and it took me a long time to get over.

I used to sell a homeless paper called Street Roots. My spot was next to a commuter train stop, they call it The Max in Portland. I was in front of a Great Harvest Bread. Those folks were very kind to me, free food and coffee on occasion.


It was here I started gaining some empathy for rich people. They got off the Max every Monday dressed in their city finery, and looking like a bunch of zombies. Nobody was smiling, nobody was talking with each other. The whole thing could make me sad if I didn’t watch myself. They were off to jobs they probably did not enjoy too much with people they didn’t know all that well.

Here is a song or poem if you will, based on folks getting off the Max on a Monday:

I got my I phone on, and my ear-buds are in
I am just walking around, and I m gone, gone, gone
and you can’t hurt me again, because I am not even here
you can’t hurt me again, because I am not even here
But then I have me a moment, where I could just use a friend
I look your way, but I see you’re gone, gone, gone
you’re not even there, with that vacant stare, no feet on the ground, your just floating through the air

Look at that man over there; he is just lying on the ground
I bet he is gone, gone, gone
I bet he is just like me, bet he could just use a friend
I feel like being human again, I just want to feel human again


look at me now, I am standing right here, I got my feet on the ground
I got all kinds of friends, from all walks of life
I got all kinds of friends, from all walks of life
and I am human again,
yes it is good to be human again

Hobo Metaphysic of the day: If you are going to be happy the one thing you are going to have to get over is yourself

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