Wow, just started watching a Bar Rescue episode on Jolt’n Joe’s in the Gaslamp. Such a horrible place and largely because of the owner Phil. Sorry he got cancer, that sucks, but when he was in his prime 5 years ago and I was helping a bunch of companies with outside events during Comic Con, that guy could not wait to try and fuck someone over. Tried to screw me 4 out of 4 times, succeeded once. Lied constantly, would undermine and try to swipe clients, just the worst. He should have stuck to the banking world where fucking people over is more of a way of life. It ain’t gonna be rescued, don’t let the episode fool you. Schadenfreude rules!
Repost from the Gofundme page facebook of Eric Simpson, of Phoenix, Oregon
[Bio] On September 8, 2020, around 2:00 P.M. I was sleeping in my room in Phoenix, Oregon when I was awakened because of an evacuation due to an oncoming fire. I sleep days and work graveyard. A little disoriented, I grabbed a stack of folded laundry, my laptop and a couple of books, got in my car, and left.
Today, the next day, as I write this I am in a Motel 6 in Medford, Oregon. A lot of people lost their homes last night, including me. When I drove by the neighborhood from the freeway, I could see no structures were left. My house, and the houses of all my neighbors, had been flattened to ash.
I know a Phoenix rises from ash, but what happens when a Phoenix burns? I guess it rises again?
Now I find myself suddenly homeless. I did not take the evacuation seriously enough, and left being most of my clothes, my books, my furniture, my keepsakes. I have left my car, about three pairs of pants, two shirts, three pairs of underwear, a few sock, a towel (of course! Don’t panic), my backpack, some face masks, and two books — one on phenomenology, and the second an introduction to Gilles Deleueze.
Now as I begin the process of finding a new place to live, the tentative plan is to stay put in the Motel 6 for a bit while I search. That would cost me almost $1000 for a couple of weeks. I will need to replenish my bathroom hygiene kit. I will need food, and gas. I will need to buy a few things in terms of clothing.
The good news is that I still have a job. So I am budgeting things like food and gas into my regular income. Once I find a place to live, I can probably get by as a minimalist, though a bed would be nice.
Right now I am just seeking some friendly help to get me past the next few weeks and hopefully into a new place as soon as possible.
[Friday, 11Sept20] Update. Half a million people have been evacuated throughout Oregon. My living quarters burned completely to the ground, and all of my things with it. At least a thousand people are displaced locally due to the mass carnage. Today, smoke hangs heavily in the air, blocking out the sun, creating a misty environment on the ground. People are out in the dangerous air, wearing masks to prevent Covid-19 transmission. I am in my Motel room, agitated and anxious, missing the happy optimism of initial denial.
Like so many others, I need a place to stay. Two options fell through in the last two days. I was offered to borrow a camper, and a friend offered to let me park it on his property. Unfortunately, the camper did not have insurance, or a title to get insurance, and Covid-era DMV is slow. I still think that would be a good short-term option until I find more permanent housing. But for now I am at Motel 6 in Medford, which is lucky.
Medford, Oregon has a strange proliferation of motels, and they are all full. I suppose my temporary solution IS the motel 6, though I would prefer something cheaper. I am looking into Red Cross vouchers today. I have some cash, and many people have generously donated to help me during this transition, for which I am very grateful. If we were a civilized nation, we would have no need for gofundme pages, but we are not, and mine can be found here: https://www.gofundme.com/f/house-burned-down-amp-need-transition-help
Yes, the shock has splintered and now I am faced with the reality, and I am aware of my own anger. To the extent that I push it down, I am left feeling depressed amid scenes from a minor apocalypse. It also surfaces as somewhat strong irritability, coupled with anxiety. It doesn’t help that the internet here is atrocious, and when I asked for the Premium plan for $4, offered in all the motel literature, I was told, “we haven’t offered that for a LONG time,” as if I should already know that. At least they gave me a decent rate on the room, whereas I have read reports that displaced victims finding rooms in nearby Grants Pass are being gouged by good, solid capitalists.
I am beginning to look into options for housing with pessimism. The housing situation locally was already unconscionable. Local landlords and management companies are also good, solid capitalists, and it has been a seller’s market for a long time, which is one reason why we already have so many dispossessed locally — though it is of course much more convenient to blame drugs. So it feels daunting. But hey ho, here I go, all my things gone and once the smoke clears, a new day, right? Phoenix burned, but mythologically-speaking, isn’t that sort of the environment specifically where phoenixes thrive?
My heart goes out to all those who are suffering and homeless and dispossessed today, whether their loss happened a couple of days ago like mine did, or years ago. No one deserves to be treated like a transient.
I really don’t know how long these links have been up for the hidden Netflix content or how long it will stay up now, but I’m enjoying that I found them.
Netflix has been one heck of a good deal entertainment-wise during this pandemic. I’m a relative newcomer to it having only been a subscriber since December or maybe November of 2019. But now that I found it I’m a devotee. I just hope they don’t raise the subscription rate too quickly.
Due to the ephemeral nature of the internet, this may change at any time. But for now the secret list of codes HERE seems to work. Of course you’ll need a Netflix subscription to access the content.
I have for you now a couple of shots up top from yesterday with the 600mm when I was down at Windansea and then Pacific Beach at the foot of Grand Avenue looking south. I was shooting handheld at ISO 100. I enjoy the compression that lens gives, everything’s foreshortened. Years ago, when I shot in nightclubs for @reviewermag a lot and before, I favored wide angle lenses with a flash because I liked the distorted effect of how a wide angle bent the image. Everyone was drinking, partying and dancing or watching a band, and it was quasi-hallucinogenic. I’d be drinking too and being social was easy because a wide angle lens requires you to get closer to people. But right now with the pandemic I don’t really like being close to people I don’t know and want to keep my distance so the fisheye lenses are all packed away. Long lenses suit my personality. It was sightly overcast here with haze from the Valley fire and felt a bit cooler than Saturday and Sunday. #telephoto #photolog #sandiego #reviewermag
Below: Mission Beach, north of Belmont Park, Labor Day 2020, Nikon RAW images post-Photoshop, ISO 100. #600mm #telephotopro #sandiego #telephoto @ Mission Beach, San Diego, Ca
This guy in these two last images was paddling around with a sand bucket on his head like he just showed up from a kegger on the beach. I was driving by and shooting from my driver’s window, only staying for a minute or two. I didn’t get a shot of him riding just padding for waves. Handheld 600mm Tamron f5.6 lens at full focal length (second shot cropped in tight with first full image), ISO 100, Nikon RAW image post-Photoshop. #telephotopro #reviewermag #handheld #600mm #telephotolens #tamron #nikon @ Windansea Beach
Canada is great. I love it. The $1 coins are called Loonies. The $2 coins are called Toonies. They don’t use pennies, just round up or down. The healthcare situation is real. People here go to the doctor when they need to. They just go and get fixed and pay a small amount. People pay more in taxes, but it feels so much more stable. The quality of life feels much higher. I feel like our whole life they’ve scared us (in the states) with this idea that taking care of ourselves and our people is some sort of psycho socialist plot to bring in a dictator or whatever, but it looks like that’s already happening anyway. Point is, loonies and toonies. The people here are so much less aggressive. I don’t mention politics here anymore, but guys… Trump is not good at this. The country is on the verge of collapse? War? I don’t know. It’s bad. I know that some of you think he’s honestly some sort of hero who is taking out dark forces, but seriously. How can you anyone believe anything he’s ever said? I am voting with absentee mail, after September 18th. I’m hoping that the GOP loses the senate. Im just over this. If you could see how Canada has been handling covid, vs the states. The USA! We grew up in a nation that told us we are #1! We can beat any other nation at anything. Look around now. The nation isn’t functioning. It’s not working. You can’t function without checks and balances. Listen, let the laws and rules work both way. Keep everyone in check. The state of the nation is currently a total world wide embarrassment. It hurts. I really just wanted to talk about loonies but, I’ve got a lot of feelings that have been bottling up and I’m just over it. I know a lot of people live to argue and debate, but file this under rant/vent. The truth is, If Trump cared about other humans, he wouldn’t have stole peoples money pretending to be a course that could help people get ahead. It was pure theft, they plead out and paid. If he was this Q anon hero playing 4-D chess, he wouldn’t have stole from charity. He’s just another American con man in a suit. He’s just another guy with his foot on our throats. I’m ready for him to be confined to the pages of history books. This is one non-college educated white guy who isn’t part of the 66%.