Interview with David
March 16th, 2020:
"I work at a restaurant across from CenturyLink. I’m a dishwasher - I hand wash all the dishes. There’s a bar next store with the same owner – so I bar-back for that when they need me, too. I work seven days a week. Any event down there – home shows, boat shows, concerts. You name it, we’re open for it. I’ve been there a little over 3 years. I’m constantly busy.
I’ve worked in [Pioneer] Square for 20 plus years. I’ve worked at the bars that are getting shut down. With the governor shutting down all restaurants and bars, that leaves me with nothing. If people don’t go out, I have nothing to do. It put me dead in the water.
Once I found out we were shut down, I contacted Todd [a Resident Services Coordinator at Bellwether], for suggestions other than unemployment. Unemployment is only 60% of what I normally make. And it doesn’t start for two more weeks, at least, so that’s going to put it close to the end of the month. I’m trying to get rent assistance, just in case I need it. I figure all the help I can get, the quicker I can get it started, the better off I’ll be.
I’m going see if there’s any small odd jobs. People still need stuff done. With that and unemployment I should be able to make it until… it could be the 31st of this month. Or it could be until the end of next month.
It’s hard to make me freak out. I’ve dealt with worse. I broke my ankle and was out for 8 months awhile back. This is just another trial. I’ve done it before. Even on L&I, they don’t give you 100%. You just cut out all the niceties and get what you get. I’m going on 52. I’ve been a pipe fabricator, a roofer, I worked construction, I did cement pouring. I have two metal plates in my ankle, so I can’t go out and do construction anymore.
I’ve been independent since I was 16 years old. I grew up in West Seattle. I used to come down to downtown Seattle when I was a kid on my bike. I’ve seen weird stuff happen to this city before, but this is pretty much the weirdest.
I’ve been living at Bellwether for about 10 years. I’m doing my best to stay where I’m at. I like it here. You don’t panic. You just stop and think. Take a breath. You can’t just freak out. That’s the best advice I can give anybody."