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21 May 2017

The Rules Outside

by Andrew

When I go into a person's house, I follow their rules. I take-off my shoes maybe—I do almost always anyway. Or there's no smoking inside—which I don't anyway, smoke. Or dinner is at this time. I respect their home.

Or if I go to jail, I imagine it's the same. I am in their jail. I follow their rules. I eat at this time. I sleep at this time. One shower I have a week, on Mondays.

At an airport, I must go through security. No sharp objects I can have on me. Everything suspicious is checked. Leave your privacy at home. They will strip you naked if they must.

Fine. I am under their roof. I am accepting their rules. But it must work both ways then. And when they come to my house, they must follow my rules, under my roof, like I follow their rules under their roof.

And I live outside. And by every right I live outside. I'm entitled. I've been through it all—extreme heat, rain, thunderstorms, tornados, hail, hurricane winds, snow, blizzards, extreme cold, various countries. I've paid my dues. I've recovered outside. It's been my sickbed. It will likely be my deathbed. Outside is my home. Who can tell me it's not? Have you slept outside? Have you shit outside? Have you had nowhere to be but outside? Maybe. But for the most part, you have your home. You have your walls and your roof, your shelter you have. And you are not outside. You have your property maybe. But I am outside.

And when you are outside, you follow my rules. You move for me when I am walking. I move for you when you are walking, so move for me. If not, I will knock you down and take your money. And if you have no money, I will beat you black and blue. You should always have money for me to take if my rules you break.

And you will let me sleep with the sun. That means that you will be gone from where I like to sleep, and quiet enough so that I can't hear. Why are you here keeping me awake when all day I have moved for you and you have moved for me? Let me sleep.


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