Max’s Journal 9/4/2014

By Max R. Weller

Good news weather-wise: Highs to peak at 75 after a nearly 20-degree cooldown in the Daily Camera. I’m also prepared now for rain during the day, thanks to my friend who brought me a new waterproof poncho yesterday; I could never remember to get one on my infrequent trips to Walmart in either Lafayette or Longmont.

I do need to make a shopping trip soon for clothes and a new tarp (these only last a few short months in the sun here at higher altitude), and good ol’ Walmart can look forward to receiving more of my dollars which I’ve saved in a coffee jar — currently $250 total, all of it from generous passersby at the corner of N. Broadway & U.S. 36.

More new faces at Boulder Shelter for the Homeless every morning, and the emergency overnight dorms won’t open until October 15th. Could it be that the worst-behaved transients are hoping to get into the 1175 Lee Hill Housing First project? Or, if not that facility, some other place here in Boulder, CO a.k.a. The Homeless Mecca? What should be done is to prioritize shelter/services for Boulder County’s own homeless people, and give transients a bus ticket on RTD to Denver, along with a couple of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and a bottle of water to-go.

I can’t confirm it, which isn’t surprising under the circumstances, but rumor has it that BSH’s tax-exempt status as a nonprofit entity per IRS rules is being reviewed as part of an audit by that federal agency. If true, it’s remarkable because the IRS exercises almost no oversight of the nonprofits. In fairness, let’s remember that incompetent administration is NOT the same as criminal intent to commit fraud.

The local homeless shelter/services industry, composed of both government agencies and private nonprofits employing many workers, operates by this unspoken and unwritten creed: More Homeless People = More Money. Of course, they welcome transients from Denver and elsewhere! There is no incentive to “end homelessness” and they have no desire to “transition” anyone away from dependence on the full range of available social services. Any homeless individual who falls into their clutches will be sentenced to a lifetime under their supervision, at taxpayer expense.

Sadly, most aren’t bright enough to figure it out:

I’m enjoying watching the large, long-tailed birds, which I haven’t yet identified as to species, laying waste to the grasshopper population in my north Boulder neighborhood. They’re black and white with some blue markings, too. What are they? Sometimes as many as a dozen are busy, swallowing the hoppers whole.

That’s all for now, folks.

Addendum 9/5/2014: The bird species has been IDed as the Black-billed Magpie:


4 thoughts on “Max’s Journal 9/4/2014

  1. Sarah

    Good grief! Looking at this photo! How is anyone expected to decide which one you can give to? I pass an obviously handicapped young man on the bridge over the Tomebamba every Sunday on my way to drum circle. It looks like he has MS. He knows no English, so using my limited Spanish, I pass on a Sacajawea hard dollar (this is much preferred in Ecuador) to him, and always make a point of greeting him with a smile, and a touch. There may be others selling food items, or young hippie types, juggling. It’s an easy decision…..

    1. homelessphilosopher Post author

      This photo (with my comments added by a meme generator) is from an organized demonstration of the homeless some time ago. Typically, there’s only one panhandler on each of the four corners at this downtown Boulder, CO intersection.

    1. Greg

      Which, besides grasshoppers, are notorious carrion eaters – right up there with crows, ravens and vultures. Any time you see more than 203 magpies together you can bet there’s a roadkill nearby.


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