Keeping warm at OccupyMN

Few people ventured out to the OccupyMN protest today. The dozen or so people that remained were either piled under a heap of sleeping bags (in the middle of the afternoon) or huddled together wrapped in blankets.

Roger Bracher knew it was getting cold when the Snapple juice he was drinking turned into slush. But he brushed off questions about how he’s coping with the cold weather.

“Come on, I look like a grizzly bear,” he said. “All I have to do is tuck my paws under my arms and I will stay warm.”

Lion and Roger.JPG

He gestured at a human cocoon sitting next to him. “Also, I’m flirting with this woman, and that’s nice. There’s a little body warmth adjacent.”

The woman in question, who gave her name as Lion Starling, said she’s grateful for her OccupyMN winter hat. She said a woman who doesn’t want to sleep at the plaza has been making the hats for the overnighters.

Lion Starling Occupy Protest.JPG

“Every now and then she makes a whole bunch of hats and comes down and gives them away to everybody,” Starling said. “That’s her way of showing support, which is just so beautiful.”

Bracher, who describes himself as a “drifter and a vagabond and a traveling musician,” said he’s having a good time at OccupyMN, but he feels awful for people who’ve been hurt by economic policies that favor the rich over the poor.

“I hurt for these people,” he said. “I know that I can grab my backpack and my guitar and I can walk away. They can’t. That hurts. That breaks my heart.”

A few hours later, nearly 300 people, including participants in the OccupyMN movement, marched across the 10th Ave. bridge chanting, “We are the 99 percent!”

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