[Hpn] HARPO CORLEONE THROWS A SEVEN

ch@nce coh@sfo.com
Mon, 05 Jun 2000 21:03:06 -0700


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Obituary:
Trent Hayward - Age 34

remembered by chance martin


On June 3 police found Trent Hayward, homeless scribe, dead on the
sidewalk of heroin overdose. He was 34.

Trent had a huge, raw talent for writing. He penned sharp, sardonic
essays for Street Sheet, Street Spirit, and Poor Magazine. He took
journalism classes at night. He had authored a piece for the SF Bay
Guardian and was about to start writing an attitudinal column about
living life out of a cardboard box for that paper.

Trent - who often went by the nom du plum Harpo Corleone -  was bright
and talented and sarcastic. He was well-schooled in that anarcho-punk
DIY attitude of cooperative collaboration. When he was fully engaged in
an issue he could compose some of the most original copy we've ever
published. Trent didn't need any of my guidance or encouragement to be
one of our best writers, he only needed to find refuge from the
dehumanizing and alienating milieu of grinding poverty and homelessness
on these quality-of-life streets of San Francisco. He just needed to be
part of something bigger than himself that accepted him as he was.

Like many writers, some of Harpo's best stuff wound up being edited. The
following was edited out of an article the STREET SHEET ran last summer
titled "Hate McMuffin." It's Trent's description of an incident where a
McDonald's security guard beat up a homeless customer for demanding the
same coffee refill that other, non-homeless customers were enjoying
without problems.


If the cause and circumstances leading up to this violent incident are
not readily available to the reader at this point, I would like to offer
my humble take on all of this. Brother Nicky is homeless. He is treated
as a public menace and a general scourge in this fucked up society, but
obviously not menacing enough not to take his money from him. He is
however, enough of an "eyesore" that his right to a "free" refill of
coffee is denied, so he doesn't "hang around" and offend the high
standards of your average fast-food glommer.

I also find it infuriating that the "public" these self -appointed
guardians are trying to protect from the sad realities of San Francisco
1999 can occasionally step up and prove themselves human beings capable
of being sickened and hurt by the way we treat each other sometimes. But
who of them speaks for me? Who speaks for Nicky, and who speaks for that
man in the suit you think you are trying not to inconvenience? Fuck you
and your flimsy, ragged sense of duty. Fuck you and your twisted self-
important idiocy.

And how dare you assume you can speak for me, or anyone else. Better
yet; just fuck you.

His best work was usually captured in one-shot marathon sessions at one
of our computers -- transfixed in the separate reality of focused
creation. And that's the only place where Trent Hayward ever found
respite from a life of shit. The only reward Trent had found on the
bottom of society was a passion for justice, and Harpo was justice's
champion. And like many other creative, passionate people - homeless or
not - his sensitivity would nourish the roots of his demise.

In an impartial analysis, Trent's death isn't very surprising. His
appetite for alcohol and drugs was formidable, and he often carried a
clear plastic sport bottle brimming with Royal Gate vodka as an
accessory to his urban camping kit. Trent's face frequently bore cuts
and bruises - souvenirs of the previous evening's impromptu endover to
the pavement or tumble down a hillside at the beach. His smartass wit
would eventually devolve into loud confused drunken hostility.
Bitterness always lay just below the surface, awaiting chemical release.

Darkness courted Trent. He had a "past." Everyone who's ever been
homeless has such a story. The dynamic is best expressed as an amalgam
of bad luck compounded by bad choices, or vice-versa. Call it a busted
relationship, family violence, drugs, disability, prison, death of a
loved one. Call it loss and grief and despair.

I once told Trent the old joke that Jesus must be in jail, because
that's where everyone finds him. This led us to the
not-so-terribly-clever speculation that he  would be in a mental ward,
but not in SF because mental health care has been the red-haired
stepchild of our Dept. of Public Health for decades. Then Trent got real
serious and told me that Jesus would be an addict - that's how we
crucify people in our capitalist society.

Trent was trying to become his own savior.

He was finding a way out through his writing.


Hope lies in tha smoldering rubble of empires...

ch@nce martin
468 Turk Street
San Francisco, CA 94102
vox: 415/346.3740
fax: 415/775.5639
coh@sfo.com
-- 
Coalition on Homelessness, San Francisco
468 Turk St.
San Francisco, CA 94102
vox: (415) 346.3740
Fax: (415) 775.5639
coh@sfo.com
http://www.sfo.com/~coh

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 --></style><title>HARPO CORLEONE THROWS A SEVEN</title></head><body>
<div><b>Obituary:</b></div>
<div><b>Trent Hayward - Age 34</b></div>
<div><b>&nbsp;</b></div>
<div><i>remembered by chance martin</i></div>
<div><br>
<br>
</div>
<div>On June 3 police found Trent Hayward, homeless scribe, dead on
the<br>
sidewalk of heroin overdose. He was 34.<br>
<br>
Trent had a huge, raw talent for writing. He penned sharp,
sardonic<br>
essays for Street Sheet, Street Spirit, and Poor Magazine. He took<br>
journalism classes at night. He had authored a piece for the SF
Bay<br>
Guardian and was about to start writing an attitudinal column
about<br>
living life out of a cardboard box for that paper.<br>
</div>
<div>Trent - who often went by the nom du plum Harpo Corleone
-&nbsp; was bright</div>
<div>and talented and sarcastic. He was well-schooled in that
anarcho-punk<br>
DIY attitude of cooperative collaboration. When he was fully engaged
in<br>
an issue he could compose some of the most original copy we've
ever<br>
published. Trent didn't need any of my guidance or encouragement to
be<br>
one of our best writers, he only needed to find refuge from the<br>
dehumanizing and alienating milieu of grinding poverty and
homelessness<br>
on these quality-of-life streets of San Francisco. He just needed to
be<br>
part of something bigger than himself that accepted him as he was.<br>
<br>
Like many writers, some of Harpo's best stuff wound up being edited.
The<br>
following was edited out of an article the STREET SHEET ran last
summer<br>
titled &quot;Hate McMuffin.&quot; It's Trent's description of an
incident where a<br>
McDonald's security guard beat up a homeless customer for demanding
the<br>
same coffee refill that other, non-homeless customers were
enjoying<br>
without problems.</div>
<div><br>
<br>
</div>
<blockquote><i>If the cause and circumstances leading up to this
violent incident are<br>
not readily available to the reader at this point, I would like to
offer<br>
my humble take on all of this. Brother Nicky is homeless. He is
treated<br>
as a public menace and a general scourge in this fucked up society,
but<br>
obviously not menacing enough not to take his money from him. He
is<br>
however, enough of an &quot;eyesore&quot; that his right to a
&quot;free&quot; refill of<br>
coffee is denied, so he doesn't &quot;hang around&quot; and offend
the high<br>
standards of your average fast-food glommer.<br>
<br>
I also find it infuriating that the &quot;public&quot; these self
-appointed<br>
guardians are trying to protect from the sad realities of San
Francisco<br>
1999 can occasionally step up and prove themselves human beings
capable<br>
of being sickened and hurt by the way we treat each other sometimes.
But<br>
who of them speaks for me? Who speaks for Nicky, and who speaks for
that<br>
man in the suit you think you are trying not to inconvenience? Fuck
you<br>
and your flimsy, ragged sense of duty. Fuck you and your twisted
self-<br>
important idiocy.<br>
<br>
And how dare you assume you can speak for me, or anyone else.
Better<br>
yet; just fuck you.</i></blockquote>
<div><br></div>
<div>His best work was usually captured in one-shot marathon sessions
at one<br>
of our computers -- transfixed in the separate reality of focused<br>
creation. And that's the only place where Trent Hayward ever found<br>
respite from a life of shit. The only reward Trent had found on
the<br>
bottom of society was a passion for justice, and Harpo was
justice's<br>
champion. And like many other creative, passionate people - homeless
or<br>
not - his sensitivity would nourish the roots of his demise.<br>
<br>
In an impartial analysis, Trent's death isn't very surprising.
His</div>
<div>appetite for alcohol and drugs was formidable, and he often
carried a<br>
clear plastic sport bottle brimming with Royal Gate vodka as an<br>
accessory to his urban camping kit. Trent's face frequently bore
cuts<br>
and bruises - souvenirs of the previous evening's impromptu endover
to<br>
the pavement or tumble down a hillside at the beach. His smartass
wit<br>
would eventually devolve into loud confused drunken hostility.<br>
Bitterness always lay just below the surface, awaiting chemical
release.<br>
<br>
Darkness courted Trent. He had a &quot;past.&quot; Everyone who's
ever been<br>
homeless has such a story. The dynamic is best expressed as an
amalgam<br>
of bad luck compounded by bad choices, or vice-versa. Call it a
busted<br>
relationship, family violence, drugs, disability, prison, death of
a<br>
loved one. Call it loss and grief and despair.<br>
<br>
I once told Trent the old joke that Jesus must be in jail, because<br>
that's where everyone finds him. This led us to the<br>
not-so-terribly-clever speculation that he&nbsp; would be in a mental
ward,<br>
but not in SF because mental health care has been the red-haired<br>
stepchild of our Dept. of Public Health for decades. Then Trent got
real<br>
serious and told me that Jesus would be an addict - that's how we<br>
crucify people in our capitalist society.<br>
<br>
Trent was trying to become his own savior.<br>
<br>
He was finding a way out through his writing.<br>
<br>
</div>
<div><font size="+1" color="#FF0000"><i><b>Hope lies in tha
smoldering rubble of empires...</b></i></font></div>
<div><br></div>
<div><font color="#FF0000">ch@nce martin</font></div>
<div><font color="#FF0000">468 Turk Street</font></div>
<div><font color="#FF0000">San Francisco, CA 94102</font></div>
<div><font color="#FF0000">vox: 415/346.3740</font></div>
<div><font color="#FF0000">fax: 415/775.5639</font></div>
<div><font color="#FF0000">coh@sfo.com</font></div>

<div>-- <br>
Coalition on Homelessness, San Francisco<br>
468 Turk St.<br>
San Francisco, CA 94102<br>
vox: (415) 346.3740<br>
Fax: (415) 775.5639<br>
coh@sfo.com<br>
http://www.sfo.com/~coh</div>
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