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I suppose my objective ~~ for now ~~ is to tell you what I experienced, what I endured as a human being, an American, a woman ~~ with no immediate, specific intent on telling you how to change these conditions that all or many of us.  We should not need “laws” to make things better, we should just be decent human beings.
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In the mid-1970s, I was becoming addicted to prescribed narcotics.  The “economic crunch” caused severe hardships at work and I worked on commission.  I, eventually, stopped showing up for work [I wasn’t making a cent, why bother?], but even before that, paying the rent was nearly impossible.  

It might have been the third time the rental agent pounded on the door for rent money (though he, usually, just locked me out before I came home from work), but I was in the shower this time.  Over the noise of the shower, I was hearing a man’s voice, I thought.  I knew I had locked the door, but wrapped a towel around me to investigate.  I was stunned to find the agent right outside the the bathroom door.  He walked a few steps towards the bedroom, then turned around, as I, quickly, stepped back in to bathroom and shut the door.  He screamed for me to “get out” there.  I cracked the door open, wearing a smile, besides the towel, and tried to talk to him nice.  He pushed the door in, grabbed me by the arm, and pushed me in to the living room.  He, then, tried to throw me out the door!  All the time he was ranting and screaming, red in the face, and as irate as I’ve ever seen anyone.   
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I could barely get a word in edgewise, as he told me to “get out” and I had “no more time to come up with the money”.  I was in tears by the and, literally, begging for sympathy.  He grabbed both my hands and twisted me to the floor, the towel barely staying around me.  In a last ditch effort for compassion, I told him I had been diagnosed with an illness and was on strong medication; I was having difficulty making money on my commissioned job.  Not an ounce of sympathy!  As he continued to yell, with an abundance of four-letter words, he told me I couldn’t make money as a prostitute!  And, with that, he grabbed me by one arm ~~ I used the other to grab my towel ~~ and he threw me outside!  He, with amazing speed, bolted the second lock on the door, to which only he had a key.  I cried, “You can’t do this.  Please!”  He put his face six inches from mine and screamed, “YES I CAN!”   Then, he ripped the towel off me!  I was horrified beyond words.      


As he rushed down the stairwell, I (quickly) calculated my best option was to try and grab the towel from him, hoping he would let me keep it.  That failed.  There I was, naked in front of the apartment building!  He threw my towel in the back seat of his car and, as he opened his car door, looked back and smiled with such delight and satisfaction.       

A woman, across the street, saw what had happened.  She ran over with an old t-shirt of her husband’s.  She said it was all she had.  I thanked her for it.  By the time I had it over my head, she was halfway back to her house. 


Then, like things couldn’t get worse, a car with three intoxicated young men drove by on an adjacent street.  I leaned forward, just a bit, hoping to cover my pubic hair and hoping they’d assume I had a swimsuit on under the shirt.  They hollered wildly.  And, though I believe, at least, one thought I looked naked, they drove on.  I was paralyzed with fear and prayed they wouldn’t come back.    

Then, it poured rain!  I thought, “How could it get worse?? — and now it’s raining!!”   My car keys, purse, everything was locked in the apartment.  I had no place to go.  I was so alone.  Having nothing else to do, I decided to embrace the moment ~~ as ugly as it was.  I stood, in the hard, cold rain, as tall as I dared and took some breaths.  I couldn’t lift my eyes too high towards the Heavens (because I wondered what kind of a Good God could let that happen to me), but I wanted to see the dark clouds.  I looked all around at what felt like the lowest place on earth.  Photobucket


As I was about to sit down on the steps, a neighbor came home.  As he was pulling in the parking lot, as I recall, he held up “the key”!  He had passed the agent and assumed the agent had been at my place and flagged him down.  I think the neighbor knew of one or more affairs that the agent had with woman in the apartments and held blackmailed him for the key each time I was locked out

Though I recognize that agent and the owner of that apartment were not obligated to give me a place to live, free of rent, how can we create a world where it becomes impossible to live decent lives?  I’m a good person, the economy was bad — why did I have to suffer?  I don’t understand why people can’t just help each other and get off the treadmill of chasing dollars.   

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