On May 21, 2008 I was hit by a car in Orlando. It changed the trajectory of my life so much that I actually commemorate the date as my "rebirthday". 

I found freedom on that windshield, like Jesus on toast. And it just so happens that this year May 21 is also DOOMSDAY!

I am the bicyclist (and/or freegan) of the apocalypse!

As such, I come to bring freedom to the rest of NYC. Join us for tomorrow's freegan party which will include food, live music, and a film screening! Not to be missed! Check the event page for details and rsvp...

Hope to see you there!

People say I'm crazy, doing what I'm doing.
they give me all kinds of warnings to save me from ruin.
When I say that I'm okay, well, they look at me kinda strange.
"Surely, your not happy now, you no longer play the game."

People say I'm lazy, dreaming my life away.
Well, they give me all kinds of advice designed to enlighten me.
When I tell them that I'm doing fine watching shadows on the wall.
"Don't you miss the big time, boy. You're no longer on the ball."

I'm just sitting here watching the [rubber bands] go round and round.
I really love to watch them roll.
No longer riding on the merry-go-round.
I just had to let it go.

People ask me questions, lost in confusion.
Well, I tell them there's no problem, only solutions.
Well, they shake their heads and they look at me as if I've lost my mind.
I tell them there's no hurry, I'm just sitting here doing time.

I'm just sitting here watching the [bands] go round and round.
I really love to watch them roll.
No longer riding on the marry-go-round.
I just had to let it go.
-John Lennon
I am a white male (Cuban by ethnic descent but white nonetheless). I grew up in a middle class, relatively "functional" nuclear family in the Miami suburbs. Both parents were college educated and employed.

I am college educated myself, yet I choose to live as a starving artist, busker, freegan, and activist. I choose to live on a shoestring in the most expensive city in the world. And hard as it is to accept what follows, that choice is itself a luxury.

I am privileged.

Does that diminish what I'm doing with my life or in the city? No, it's what I've been called to. My willingness to leverage my privilege on behalf of the poor, for God's Kingdom, brings God glory all the more.

But there are many more people who live in poverty every day, not by their own choosing, who are also following after the heart of God. I hope to join their ranks in solidarity, to cast my lot with theirs. It is an honor to live and serve alongside them, even to be served by them as well. 

This is the kind of radical community I am after - marked by generosity, care, love, and justice - til it can be said that there are no needy folks among us.

"All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had... God's grace was so powerfully at work in them all that there were no needy persons among them."
Acts 4

Moreover, I am an "American" heterosexual Christian. I am Privileged with a capital P. Just thought that I should acknowledge my privelege before I post anything further on this here blog.
From Good Morning Joe blog...

My head was probably half-submerged in a clear plastic bag on the corner of 115th Street and Broadway when I first made Al's acquaintance. He looked on with apparent curiosity as three freegans procured their weekly groceries, free of charge.

In our usual friendly manner, we offered him the food that we'd already acquired. He seemed amazed about the sheer amount of waste and interested in taking some food home. We handed him a plastic grocery bag and he helped himself to a few items: an apple or two, cucumber, perhaps a microwave meal.

He could not take much more, he said, "because the library doesn't allow food. I've been camping out there for the past couple weeks."

I wouldn't have guessed upon first glance that he was homeless. With his unkempt long white beard, otherwise clean cut, beady eyes set behind square spectacles, and walking cane he looked like any old cooky university professor. Indeed that's precisely the kind of man we had on our hands: a former cooky professor who had fallen on hard times.

"They let me hang out in the library for free, it's a great perk of working for the school..."

Yes, and he knows when and where to catch museums, shows, film screenings, art galleries - all kinds of entertainment around the city - for FREE. My kind of guy.

"…but they don't allow food. Either way, I won't be staying there long."

Al(bert) explained that he worked for Columbia some years ago, the reason they allow him in the library. Students are in the throes of finals, so the library doors are open at all hours. But not for long. He must soon find another place to stay and does not have much money for rent when that time comes. 

He accompanied us to our next stop, a bakery some blocks away. This location is well known amongst freegans for its lavish gourmet pizza, though their occurrence is somewhat seldom. This week we were in luck! Plenty of cheese and pepperoni slices for all. I had no interest in taking it home so we partook then and there. I helped myself to a cheese slice and passed another along to Al. He was very thankful and in a bit of disbelief. He had learned how to get almost everything for free - even "lodging" for a few weeks now - but had never considered this method for finding food.

He asked whether we knew anyone with a room. I offered to spread word of his need, but I couldn't promise a successful effort. Either way, I was glad to have helped him learn how to subsist in NYC. With the amount of food wasted and the facility of acquiring it, there is absolutely no need for anyone in this city to go hungry. We hope to prevent hunger and food waste before our valuable resources hit the waste bag.

Someday, perhaps. Someday.

In the mean time we can help ourselves to the city's discards, keep some good food out of landfills while keeping our own bellies full, and seek out viable living situations for brothers and sisters in need, like my new friend Al. 

Baby steps.
He who loves money will not be satisfied with money, nor he who loves wealth with his income; this also is vanity.

Featuring solo acoustic acts:
Owen Pye (IL) --- http://owenpye.com/
GioSafari --- http://facebook.com/giosafari

FREE vegan food at the show.
All ages, all the time.

281 Edgecombe Ave #6B

PLEASE ARRIVE EARLY (at or near 7) IF POSSIBLE. Please also consider a donation for traveling musicians and/or a freegan dish to share! (use the stuff in the back of your pantry that you forgot you even had).

Folks who RSVP "Attending" on this here event page will receive a notification prior to the event with the apt number.

Edgecombe house is one block from ACBD subway station @ 145 st, Manhattan. Contact the host at giosafari[@]gmail[.]com with any further questions about the show/venue.