To T-Bone Slim (first letter)

Dear Matti,
I’ve let things as they are drift by.  I am waiting (and I use that word sheepishly) for a chance to decide my life before it’s over.  Your accomplishments have inspired me and now here I am: I don’t want to be ruled and I’m unsure if freedom is still possible.  My body recoils.  It’s hard to write this stuff.  I’m resisting regardless.  I keep singing too:
The boss he put me driving spikes
And the sweat was enough to blind me,
He didn’t seem to like my pace,
So I left the job behind me
I wouldn’t think about tomorrow.  I’d let it come and go.  I’d try, wherever I found myself, to abide by local rules, but the law and justice are so often in conflict.  I’d hear you in each instance:  “Where there’s injustice the proper form of politeness is attack.”  I’ve wanted to set a good example while remaining a kind soul, never exploiting the vulnerable.  I’ve had to reject a career trajectory because of it.  The indignities of competition still repulse me.
I traveled east and I traveled west
And the shacks could never find me,
Next morning I was miles away
From the job I left behind me.
I’ve let things as they are drift by.  Like most people I know I’ve needed to work, part-time, full-time, anything, and sometimes I’ve ended up getting jobs nobody else wants.  Well that’s not entirely true.  There’s always someone below you in the global squeeze to the bottom.  Most jobs aren’t what they were in your day.  A lot of us manage an aspect of our falsity, our separation from ourselves and others.  The boss is hard to identify, let alone contact.  We send emails to general addresses and navigate automated phone messaging systems.  There are vague threats of litigation that we can’t afford or understand.  We’ve become a politically frustrated lumpenproletariat, a tortured oxymoron.  We organize well but without direction or unified purpose.  There’s power in our union, but we haven’t a clue how to utilize it.  The future is never quite here yet and our everyday lives are haunted by opportunistic, shape-shifting phantoms.  I want to do more than endure the proliferating complicatedness of it all.  Most folks I know must feel the same.
I kicked right in and joined the bunch
And now in the ranks you’ll find me,
Hurrah for the cause – To hell with the boss
And the job I left behind me.
I wouldn’t think about tomorrow.  I’d let it come and go.  I’ve tried, like you have, like most of us do, to rely on my wits and what passes for charm to get by when there’s no real work to be had, but to survive within an economy of any sort, no matter how healthy or dysfunctional — to sing for one’s supper — is ultimately too much to ask of anyone.  Personhood is torn apart and we all hurt because of it.  Fortunately for me, the process is now a little less unbearable (hehe).  My decision to become a family man has been something to live up to.  I’ve got mouths to feed while believing in revolution.  The day is coming when no one will starve amidst so much.  I’m in love with the rank and file that I used to run away from.  My hobo days are over.  I’ve taken your advice to heart and no longer exhaust myself.  I’ll be ready for a better world together if it kills me.
I try not to be a stupid drunk either.  Writing to you like this helps.
jeremy