Name: Kurt Shuptrine, 55
Date: 23 March 2022
Place: Rankin Street and Islais Creek
Homeless: About 11 years
What does Home mean to you?
Texas, that’s where I’m from. I miss Texas big time.
Why are you at Rankin and Islais Creek?
It’s by the water. Something about the water reminds me of home.
Here lately it’s (a typical day) been about getting my license back. In order to do that they’re are things I have to do – I have to enroll in a DUI class. I have go and figure some way to make money to pay for my insurance, the fines and stuff. I keep myself busy working on peoples’ cars when I can, when they’ll let me. I do some welding, I have a welder. I do plumbing, do building maintenance, if I can find a place to do little odd jobs. Whatever it takes.
[Hardest thing about living on the street is] having to deal with the way that people look at you. And treat you.
I’m almost to the point that I’m going to be like that [service resistant]. If it’s like the “shelter in place” hotel that they put me in, I don’t want that. If you’re going to be treated like a child, I don’t want no part of it. You know I’m 55 years old, that’ll come soon enough on its own. (I just want) someplace normal, someplace you can be normal.
I’m not going to be treated like a child, period. You’re going to respect me and speak to me the way I speak to you. Why should it be any different just because I’m without a home? It happens to people, more and more here lately.
I’m not trying to be picky. A roof, four walls, some privacy, and a shower. My own shower.
Someplace that you don’t have to check into and have your guests check into. I’m still hoping that I’ll find the “right girl”, get married. You can’t do that in an SRO [single room occupancy].
Just someplace normal.
Kurt Shuptrine has lived in his car “pretty much for 11 years”