This is a support blog for people that have been diagnosed with early stage FTD/dementia. This blog is dedicated to helping people help themselves as well as increase awareness for caregivers, friends, and the medical community. It will include finding groups, medical care, public assistance, having fun again, making new friends, dealing with old friends, family, depression, and isolation.
Dementia is a lifestyle change. You can live a happy, productive life with dementia.
Thursday, May 17, 2012
Death of Food Stamps
Good morning from Starbuck “145” (New Forbes FTD series patient profile at the end of article) Diana
This is the sad or happy conclusion to my food stamp saga.
I’m not sure which it is, but one thing is for sure. It is what it is.
I will refresh others and myself by plagiarizing my own
work from July 2011 and then move on to the sordid conclusion.
Like everyone else in society, I need to blow off steam, which I do
through ironical emails to people. Some of these I’ve been told are funny and
entertaining. I recently applied to get my food stamp allowance increased
and as life would have it, it decreased.
"Thank you for explaining to me that
everyone has been getting a reduction in their food stamp allowance due to the
national debt crisis. My food stamp allowance was reduced from $2.03 a day to
$1.45 a day. Even though I am totally disabled it does give me pleasure to know
that I am personally able to sacrifice and contribute towards reducing the
national debt. It's also a relief to know that because of my 58 cent a day
contribution companies like Exxon and GE will not have to pay any taxes, as
well as we will not have to burden the top 2% of wage earners of the United
States with any additional taxes."
I initially received $63.00 a month or $2.03 a day in August 2010. The
maximum was $200 but that’s what I was approved for and grateful for the assistance.
I watched the amount dwindle till it was a stumpy $16.00 a month or 63 cents a
day. No reason was ever given. It’s not much fun ingesting cheerios and water
for days at a time, to embarrassed to tell your friends.
I decided to address the issue and painfully gathered all the necessary
documentation showing rent increases, bills, etc. to attempt to get an
increase. I took the subway to the food stamp office and waited in the bowels
of the NYC Department of Bullshit building for a couple of hours to plead my case.
The municipal employee was pleasantly civilized. She did the usual, bounce
me here and there; fill out this and that form. I explained to her I had
cognitive issues and she did help me with the paperwork. I asked her if she had
any idea of what type of increase if any I would get. She gave “the look” and
stated it would be determined by the food stamp meisters. Being sarcastically
challenged, I had no idea if she was hinting either way.
Increase was approved and my dreams of a lobster dinner were a delusional
reality. My food stamp allowance was increased from 63 cents a day to 73 cents
a day. Ten cents a days or from $16 to $19 a month.
It sucks being on food stamps. With FTD, I have short-term memory loss,
which means besides basic microwaving, cooking and using gas burners are
dangerous. I use them once in a while, but try to avoid them. I like to have hot cooked food and It’s against the food stamp God rules, to buy hot prepared food with food stamps. Not that
$19 a month enables you to buy much.
A few months ago I bought grapes for dinner. Seedless grapes, yes I’m
spoiled. It came out to almost $6. It was a Friday night and there was a long
line. Every store or supermarket in the US uses a different card swiper. There
all made in one Chinese factory and it’s a conspiracy to mess with American
minds J. I was technically challenged at the cashier’s swipe machine. She said in
a loud voice, “Is that Food Stamps or Debit”? I was embarrassed. I retorted, “
Food Stamps and thank God I only get 63 cents a day, so I won’t have to put up
with being publicly humiliated for another 8 days”.
My living the high life with a ten-cent increase to 73 cents a day turned
out to be short lived. I received a 26-page document in the mail from the Food
Stamp Gods that I needed to be recertified. Considering a month before I was
approved for an increase made me suspicious and a bit paranoid. Letting them
know I’m FTD certifiable was not an option. I couldn’t make Heads or Asses of
the document, except that I had to have a 2-hour hearing and needed to bring in
suitcase full of paperwork for the June hearing. Screw it.
I’m doing okay. I do have help each month and am no longer doing the cheerios
and water thing. I doubt it’ll get to this point, but I think I’d rather go out
with a tin cup for day than ever put up with this crap ever again.
Eight years ago I was making six figures and flying to
Thailand to have my suits and clothing tailored in Bangkok. Now, I
realistically can't even afford clothing from the Salvation Army. Guess
what? It's morning; I'm at Starbucks “145” writing and doing great. My life has
once again regained happiness and purpose.
I have a blog, a
support group, a movie, and some of the best quality peoples the Universe has
I want for nothing.
In the last few days I
harassed and cursed (playfully) someone in an elevator for bringing his mom
flowers on mothers day (I forgot it was mothers day), viciously and unintentionally cursed out the
facilitator at my Memory Club support group and outbursted at a cop with a
haranguing long FTD rant for sloppy driving.
My name is Howard Glick. I have FTD, it sucks but I
have a life and will continue to live it and make the most of it.