Ross Anthony, M.Ed. (A Los Angeles Creative)
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¤ 2021 and Beyond! ¤

These days, I've been focused on video and have not been marketing my books. So I've been sponsoring Chili4homeless on a much smaller scale. I happily cook up a huge pot of chili, keep some for me, put the rest in jars I'm recycling (jam jars, fruit jars, pasta sauce, etc.) and distribute. The video below is from an earlier (2014) event, but gives you a nice, visual, 120-second nutshell of this "little happening."

¤ 2021 ¤

On a surprisingly brisk April Monday, I gather up some tomatoes, elbow Mac, ground beef, etc. I usually use garbanzo beans, but this time I had no beans in the house. I proceed anyway - life is all about improvising. I'm far less worried about covid-transmission issues as the Covid crisis "seems" to be over the peak and I'm recently vaccinated (got my second shot last week). I load up my 3 jars of freshly made Chili, still warm, in my trusty motorbike Chili. No flats this time! In fact, I just put a new rear tire on -- and she looks great. Still awaiting some new parts, but I won't be going far. Surprisingly, the many homeless I've seen in my neighborhood can't be found at 6:30pm today. Have they been "moved on" by the authorities? The usual areas look too clean. I'm getting cold, and the sun is setting. I head a couple miles south and see a thin young woman with a safety vest and large trash bag of stuff in an old folding grocery cart. I turn around and stop at her corner. "Want some chili?" I say. She steps forward with raised eyebrows and a tentative smile. I pop the lid of Chili's "trunk" and give her a big jar or chili. She smiles more conclusively. Two guys see us and come walking up, joking, laughing, and ask, "Whatchya got there? We want some." I give them the remaining two jars. "Do you have spoons?" I ask. "Nope." So, I reach back for 3 biodegradable spoons. In that time, another fellow walks up. I address him, "I'm all out of chili, but perhaps one of these fellows will share from their big jars..." As I put my helmet on, I can see the two first fellows have no interest in sharing. But as I'm pulling away, I overhear the woman offering some of hers to him.

¤ 2022 ¤

A cool day in March, I cook up my chili. Tastes great! I fill a large pickle jar with it. I’m in a rush this year, and Chili my trusty motorcycle needs a timing chain replaced (I can hear it slapping around the crank case). I decide to give Chili a break this year and deliver the chili in my trusty Prius on my way across town. I exit the highway and see a woman at the end of the off ramp. Her clothes are dirty and torn, her hair looks like a wig, she looks like she’s been at that corner for hours. I slow and roll down my window. “How are you?” She shouts at me. I reply rather without thinking, “I’m good, how about you?” She smiles back, "Fantastic!” Her enthusiasm catches me by surprise. It's actually contagious. However, the light is about to change so I've got to get to the task at hand ... “How about some warm Chili - I just cooked it up!” A ask as I present the pickle jar of chili through the driver window. She takes the jar, “Absolutely! It’s good to be alive!”

¤ 2023 ¤

A chilly day in March. Lots of ground beef in the chili this time. Chili (the motorcycle) is resting on non-op, as I await warmer weather and inspiration to perform the necessary repairs. A worn timing chain is suspected, because of a metallic noise coming from that location. I've got the parts, and this is Southern Cal, so it's mostly inspiration and some time that I need to dig in. I've also had two very capable friends offer to assist, but in both cases, it involves removing the engine from the bike. So, that takes a little inspiration on my part. Therefore, I drove the car to deliver my single 32 ounce jar of chili to a fellow set up behind his full shopping cart in a doorway of a closed down biz. He was concerned that the chili might not agree with him, though offered to pass it to someone who was more chili-compatible. But when I told him that I made it myself, he said he might sneak a bite first.

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© 2015 photos, text, art, music copyright Ross Anthony. Thank you to all those who have participated in chil4homeless! (My Readers! My Friends! My Family! Misc. Strangers! Kocanda, Galati, Rand, Keszek, and many many more!

Last Modified: Saturday, 22-Apr-2023 11:20:00 PDT