I Am On the Dole and Can't Get Off

Monday, November 14, 2005

Doling out my life

The envied are like bureaucrats; the more impersonal they are, the greater
the illusion (for themselves and for others) of their power. John Berger

So my instincts were correct. This is no picnic. I should have listened to those voices (no I don’t hear voices). In fact it is the lack of food (much less a picnic), which prompted me to write. This situation is not something friends or anyone care to hear about. In fact since I started receiving disability I have isolated even more. At least when I was struggling I could say I was looking for a job or just lost a job or that times were hard. Now I feel the weight of a label that I cannot seem to translate to me or anyone. I have fallen into the abyss of nothingness. Nothingness that still requires food. I am Client number 08930731. Frankly it’s not even about the food today I am used to getting by on peanut butter. It’s my overwhelming contempt for the bureaucracy I depend on for my needs. The bureaucracy has become like an unavailable Mother one I resent depending on for my very survival. I cannot deal with it anymore. So, tonight I will eat peanut butter. I cannot bear to call Roberta Worker number 2366 to find out what form I possibly forgot. Besides I probably could not get her on the phone if I tried. (Insert primal scream) Like a child I must keep going back to the Bureaucratic Mother only to be put on hold, dismissed, reprimanded or ignored. I feel better just knowing I have put off dealing with Roberta worker number 2366 for one more day. Maybe I will get lucky and I will call that dreaded number and that lovely operator will say, “Your food stamp balance is 136.00. That is a dream. Besides I have other agencies on my “put off list”. Did I mention Medicare QMB program or Medicare Prescription Drug Program? I will be the first to admit I sometimes wait to the last minute and sometimes I blow off a lot of the details. In my defense that is a part of the very reason I am on disability remember- instability. When you are dealing with these people there are no gray areas except the ones they use to excuse their incompetence. They don’t know me. Hell, I don’t want them to know me -I just would like to be recognized as a human being that is depending on how they do their jobs for my very existence.


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