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Tag Archives: cold

Survivor-Man Me?

8 Feb

February 8, 2018

Let me tell you what I was wearing. Not because I think you’ll get a thrill out of it, but because it is relevant to the story.

Blue sweat pants. Brown slip-on Skechers that I say are trendy and Saarah says are not. No socks. An old, thin green worn out t-shirt that is only good for wearing around the house. A winter coat.

That’s quite an ensemble and no, I was not on my to the Queen’s Ball. I was outside throwing out the trash. It was midnight and about 25 degrees outside. (That’s degrees Fahrenheit, not that Celsius nonsense. Celsius is just a scam perpetuated by the big mercury conglomerates to make us buy new thermometers.)

Does the dude in this stock photo look cold? He just looks creepy to me.

I walked around the side of my building to where the garbage cans are and put my trash in one of the already full cans so that my bag was precariously balanced atop a mountain of who knows what. I’m pretty sure that my building’s super empties these cans once in a while, but then again, what do I know? They never seem to get any emptier. (Yet they never get any fuller either. Maybe he empties just enough to keep the status quo.)

So, mission accomplished, I was walking back around the building when there was a gust of wind and I realized just how poorly I was dressed for the weather. Good thing I was only going to be outside for a minute or two and had a warm home to go back to.

But what if I didn’t? What if I were homeless?

Dressed as I was, was I prepared to survive a night of sudden homelessness?

I was already feeling a chill in my toes and since I wasn’t wearing socks my feet weren’t particularly comfortable to begin with.  So if I was forced to spend a night outdoors, braving the elements, how would I handle it?

My first worry was about frostbite. My hands I could jam in my jacket pockets, but with no socks my toes were an obvious frostbite target. I could probably tear up my shirt and wrap my feet in the cloth, then jam them into my shoes. But then I’d be shirtless (calm down ladies). Well, I was wearing a winter coat so I could zip it all the way up. My head was bare and my jacket didn’t have a hood. Maybe I could save some of the ripped t-shirt to wrap around my head like a bandanna to protect my ears from frostbite. Nothing I could do about my legs. The wind blew right through the sweatpants.

I had to face the fact that I was barely dressed to survive the minute and a half I’d be out in the winter, there was no way I’d survive overnight.

It was one thing to toss out the trash dressed that way, but I’d have to prepare better if I were to live outside.

If I were ever really homeless, I’d somehow make my way down to Florida. It’s much easier to be homeless in the winter laying on Miami Beach than it is here on Coney Island Beach.

That’s the life!

Being homeless on the beach does have some perks.

 

 

 

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Conclusion: New Year’s Eve in Brooklyn 2014/2015

12 Jan

 

January 12, 2014

At this point I realized that I could have made a fortune selling hot chocolate. I had given Saarah my hat to wear, and now not only was my head freezing but also my hands since I had no gloves. So I was forced to break into the emergency kit I keep in the trunk. I took out a stained and battered Mets cap (only in an emergency would I wear a Mets cap) and a pair of work gloves which had just under the maximum number of holes allowed so I could keep calling them gloves. One more hole and they would technically just be a bunch of loosely connected threads.

Other items in my emergency kit: Flashlight with dead batteries and a funnel.

Thus fortified, we waited until 9:15 and briskly walked back to the “party,” which was now threatening to maybe, possibly, start.

The DJ equipment was set up but the only music was coming from a CD player someone put on a chair next to the DJ equipment. The carousel had still not opened and showed no indications of opening, despite the icicle-laden folks hoping in vain to get in out of the cold. However, the tent was set up and it looked like something was happening.

And it was! Yes!

Two grumpy volunteers were handing out party favors from a pair of insanely small boxes. I was worried that even this tiny crowd may not all get favors so I checked- no other boxes stashed under the table and nothing stashed in the barricaded area with the CD player. I did a quick count- about 30 people on line, about 15 huddled and shivering near the carousel, and another 20 to 30 gathering around the music area where something was clearly and absolutely not going to happen anytime soon. But don’t worry, the volunteers were strictly rationing the party supplies. Each would-be reveler got their choice of either a party hat or a noisemaker. One only. And which one you got was not up to you, it was up whichever volunteer handed you something first. So if you brought your own party hat you may wind with another party hat despite only having one head. (And no party.)

Saarah and I each got hats, which was what we wanted. We took one last loop around the place to make sure we weren’t missing anything, and believe me, we had already had the full Coney Island party experience.

Our ball drop experience ended the same way the last one I went to did, so many years ago back in the 80’s, in the words of Bobby Brown from My Prerogative, “I made this money, you didn’t. Right Ted? We outta here.” So we left. (See Part 1)

There was a steady stream of cars leaving the parking lot with us.

Coney Island, I am very disappointed in you.

 

The End

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