Monthly Archives: January 2013

Whodunit?

By Max R. Weller

Everybody has an opinion. I think John Ramsey is quite right about the Daily Camera’s unending tabloid-style coverage of his daughter’s murder over 16 years ago.

Here’s my theory of the crime — the real killer is one of the obsessed Boulderites, who keeps reliving the event over and over again in his twisted mind. Too bad that the DC is aiding this  individual with trashy pseudo-reportage.

A couple of names stand out to me, based on their comments online following every article about the case and other factors indicating a pathological interest beyond what is reasonable. In all fairness, everyone is a suspect if the Ramseys (Patsy passed away in 2006) are still being portrayed as the culprits. To wit:

Evan Ravitz and Rob Smoke. Gentlemen, can each of you account for your whereabouts on the night of December 25-26, 1996? And would each of you be willing to submit a DNA sample for comparison purposes?

Put up or shut up.

Advertisements

Max’s Journal 1/30/2013

By Max R. Weller

As I was standing in front of Boulder Shelter for the Homeless this morning shortly before 6AM, the first SKIP bus to complete its route dropped off a load of bums from the emergency warming center, held last night at the Mennonite Church on Table Mesa near S. Broadway. They had no more than a few minutes to wait, there in the cold, but they were almost crying and pestering staff to let them in early. Of course, I slept outside last night as I do most nights throughout the year — and I wasn’t whining about the temperature. One of the sissies was drunk, and when he tried to check in at the front desk he was reminded that he’d been kicked out last night for having alcohol on premises, and he couldn’t come back to BSH for 30 days (and nights).

When I finished with my shower and my lukewarm mug of cheap instant coffee (BSH no longer provides hot water in the dining room for those who want instant coffee, or oatmeal, or ramen noodles) I got onto the SKIP bus southbound for King Soopers and the George Reynolds Branch of Boulder Public Library. The little dining area next to Starbucks was packed with bums, who only had a couple of blocks to walk from the warming center. Typically, they’ll each buy a small cup of coffee and try to loiter there for several hours. I took another trip through the store, about 15-20 minutes, and by the time I got back they’d been told to move on. So, I sat down to eat my donuts and read the newspaper. I gave some thought to buying a large dark roast coffee as a special treat to myself, but then two Boulder PD officers appeared on scene and started questioning one of the strange little homeless guys from BSH, who is apparently now on his second trip through the so-called transitional living program there. I forgot about the coffee, and went on my way over to the library. As I stopped to zip up my coat right outside of King Soopers, however, two police officers in a CUPD vehicle pulled up and went inside. I speculated that the BSH program bum might have been up to no good on the CU campus. You know, despite what they say to the contrary, these bums must really and truly love the police; they seem to go out of their way to attract the cops’ attention as often as possible. Me? I might see a law enforcement officer from BCSO or the Colorado State Patrol once every other month or so, doing a “check welfare” at my campsite. Otherwise, I keep my nose clean and have no contact with the law.

It’s difficult to find new ways of writing about the same ol’, same ol’ homeless drama here in Boulder, CO. That’s why I’m looking forward to working on a literary project with a friend of mine; the collaboration should breathe some fresh life into what has become stale to me.

I may be ready for another stretch indoors next week, and the opportunity to continue reading the Aubrey/Maturin series of historical novels by Patrick O’Brian, and relaxing in my friends’ basement. I hope that they never grow tired of my company, but I fear imposing too much on their hospitality. A break from sleeping on the ground, in a real bed, does wonders for my bad hip and for my outlook on life, too.

I boycotted the 2013 Point-in-Time Survey

By Max R. Weller

See the story in the Times-Call about this annual count of the homeless. I’ve previously participated, in each of the past few years, but have seen no benefit to myself whatsoever. To the extent that numbers of the homeless translate into more $$$ for the shelter/services industry, it might seem like a good idea to hold an annual survey; in actual practice, however, it’s the worst-behaved transients from Denver and elsewhere who receive the most and Boulder County’s own homeless people are shortchanged in the process.

The unspoken and unwritten creed of Boulder Housing Partners, Boulder Shelter for the Homeless, Bridge House, and other local nonprofits is More Homeless People = More Money. When you consider the 1175 Lee Hill Housing First project for chronically homeless, single adult alcoholics/drug addicts with a dual diagnosis of mental illness — well over $6 million will be spent before any of the 31 units are occupied by HF clients — it’s obvious that money is being squandered in the most reckless manner conceivable. Boulder County has families with kids sleeping in their cars, if they’re lucky enough to still own a vehicle; why not a Housing First project for them? The answer, unfortunately, is that the Wet House model serves to employ many more case managers, substance abuse and mental health counselors, and other support staff. Most people find this sort of exploitation of the vulnerable for financial gain despicable, especially in view of the fact that HF clients will be allowed to continue drinking themselves to death on premises. Believe me, the street drunks would be just as happy with a minimal level of emergency shelter/services at far less cost, and you have only to look at BSH’s emergency dorms and Boulder Outreach for Homeless Overflow to confirm that fact.

As for me, I spent last night at my humble campsite. I was warm and comfortable, and enjoyed the peace and quiet in my solitude. BTW, I have refused to apply for any of the government benefits to which I’m legally entitled, and instead make enough $$$ to meet my needs through my generous sponsors. Why would I want to be counted in the Point-in-Time Survey, anyway? True, because it’s convenient to do so I take a shower nearly every morning at BSH and I keep a small locker there for my meager possessions; but if it closed tomorrow, I’d quickly make other arrangements. I’m not interested in helping increase funding for Denver bums, unless it would be a one-time deal to hand out the $5 bus tickets on RTD back to Denver — but that isn’t in the cards.

As I left BSH this morning about 7:15AM, a staff member asked me (in reference to the Point-in-Time Survey), “Max, do you have time to answer a few questions?” I said yes, I had the time, but I wouldn’t be doing so. I added that I’d filled out my 2010 U.S. Census form, which was my legal obligation. I wished him a good day and I walked out the door.

After all, because I’m clean and sober and relatively sane, there ain’t no do-gooders offering me a new $200,000 apartment at 1175 Lee Hill . . . Not that I would care for the pickled idjits as neighbors, if they did.

Seattle Public Library Rules of Conduct

By Max R. Weller

See the comprehensive list here. This is the sort of policy I’d like to see adopted by Boulder Public Library, in particular this rule —

Category A (Library Specific Violation)

  • Having offensive body odor or personal hygiene so as to unreasonably interfere with other patrons’ ability to use the Library and its facilities.

Granted, not even Seattle Public Library is perfect. Its (new?) facility resembles a Giant Cheese Grater, pictured below —

Someone was paid Big $$$ to design this!

But, more to the point for BPL patrons, the Rules of Conduct linked to above would address the long-standing problems associated with the worst-behaved transients from Denver and elsewhere who frequent the Main Branch at 1001 Arapahoe. Coupled with better law enforcement in the Central Park area along Boulder Creek Path, this could once again become a family-friendly destination for both Boulderites and tourists. And I would even return there, myself . . .

Arrogant Boulder elites hating on Walmart shoppers

By Max R. Weller

See the latest grandstanding by Boulder City Council members Macon Cowles and Lisa Morzel. Of course they’re opposed to Walmart, even a Neighborhood Market (a fraction of the size of a Supercenter), because they want to finish driving out the last of the working poor and middle class folks living here. Then, they can erect a wall around the entire Boulder Bubble, permitting workers to enter for their jobs only and requiring them to promptly leave at the end of the work day. It’s been the unspoken and unwritten goal of PLAN-Boulder from the start, a Machiavellian* political machine which has totally corrupted the local electoral process with off-year elections, all city council members chosen at-large, the mayor picked by other city council members in a backroom deal, etc.

No need to rehash Cowles’ lowball property tax assessment scandal, which saved him mucho dinero before it came to light; it continues to speak for itself in re his character (or the lack thereof). As for Morzel, I’ve personally known a lot of crooked politicians and even served with some during my time as a city councilman back in Missouri; but, Morzel is the worst two-faced publicity hound I’ve encountered yet.

In the final analysis, the free market will determine the success or failure of a Walmart Neighborhood Market in Boulder, CO — and this is exactly as it should be. As far as I’m concerned, Cowles and Morzel and their ilk can all jump off a cliff.

*Hey, if Macon Cowles can toss in the term “Faustian” in his remarks to the Daily Camera, I can be equally obscure in this post.