I applaud your good sense in buying The Big Issue. I hope you continue with your buying. I hope that the experience of buying fulfils some of your needs. Your need to be kept informed, titivated, enticed, entertained, questioned; and engaged with one of the biggest looking, seemingly unsolvables of modern times.
The figures grow of more and more people living a temporary accommodation life. That is, people who do not control where they live. That where they live is at the whim of some helping agency or is actually nowhere in particular; down the back of some car park, warehouse or ensconced in a frosty sleeping bag in a doorway.
When you have nowhere ‘certain’ to live you defy all of the basic human needs. All other human needs, like eating and sleeping, washing, flow out of that need. Such needs can be supplied in an ad hoc, off-the-cuff fashion. But if you really want to do in the minds of the healthy, or the unhealthy, even more, pull from under them the safety, the comfort, the need of being at rest somewhere permanently.
I salute you buying this paper, engaging with the vendor you are have bought the paper from
That is why when a Big Issue vendor gets somewhere to stay we carry on working with them because we realise how treasured, how life-enhancing is that experience of having somewhere to go back to. So long as where you go back to is a bit of yourself expressed within four walls, a roof and a floor.
Being transient is being lost. Unless of course you’re doing a Jack Kerouac (in his novel On the Road) and keeping moving is your idea of bursting free from the const-raints of society. But most of us need a billet, a place that feels and smells and tastes like our own space. We are no different from foxes and cats in that way.
I salute you buying this paper, engaging with the vendor you are have bought the paper from, and hope that it brightens your Christmas in the same way you have brightened up his and mine. Without the lifeblood of purchase we cannot carry on and the person selling The Big Issue will have to find another way of carrying on. Perhaps one more damaging. Or they may write a book about their life with a cat and enter the big time. Who knows.