Monthly Archives: May 2015

Why be your own worst enemy, homeless people? And more

A LITTLE MORE ACCOUNTABILITY, A LITTLE LESS ENABLING

By Max R. Weller

Photo taken at the “Horseshoe” on Boulder Creek Path near Boulder High School

Self-destructive behaviors — including drinking, drugging, smoking tobacco, and hanging out in transient rat packs — make life so much more difficult than it has to be. Stop wasting your meager disposable income and your precious time on this nonsense! Get clean and sober, attend to your personal hygiene requirements, and meet new friends who belong to the broader community in which you live. It will open up a whole new world of positive experiences and opportunities, which can NEVER be discovered at Bridge House or any of the other popular bum hangouts.

Make no mistake about it: Isabel McDevitt, Joy Eckstine Redstone, and others of their ilk will keep you down forever if you allow them to do so. Their creed is More Homeless People = More Money. Don’t be a pawn in their game . . .

Another “Look at me, look at me, LOOK AT ME!” moment from someone in the Boulder Bubble involves the would-have-been valedictorian at Twin Peaks Charter School in Longmont, CO. I support the school administration. Here is the statement they issued:

Statement from Twin Peaks Charter School Regarding

2015 Graduation Ceremonies 

May 28, 2015 (Longmont, Colo.) ­– On Saturday, May 16, 2015, Twin Peak Charter Academy hosted its second annual high school graduation ceremony. The Salutatorian, Historian and Valedictorian were invited to speak at the graduation.  Ultimately, the Valedictorian was not allowed to deliver his speech. 

As a public school, Twin Peaks Charter Academy has policies and procedures that must be followed to protect our students and maintain the overall mission of our school – which is to provide students with a rigorous education and the foundations of virtue and character, building cultural literacy through a content-rich curriculum in an encouraging environment. 

Students have a broad right to express their points of view in a non-disruptive manner when they are not participating in a school-sponsored activity. However, when a student is participating in a school-sponsored activity, the Supreme Court recognized in its Hazelwood decision that the school has not only the right, but the duty, to ensure that the student abides by reasonable standards. Specifically, the court said that the educators may exercise “editorial control over the style and content of student speech in school-sponsored expressive activities so long as their actions are reasonably related to legitimate pedagogical concerns.” 

In the case of the 2015 graduation ceremony, the Valedictorian failed to follow the guidelines established by the school. The initial draft of the student’s speech submitted for review was condescending toward the school and the student’s peers and included, among other things, ridiculing comments about faculty and students. The draft speech also included references to personal matters of a sexual nature.  None of these topics are ever appropriate for a speech at a graduation ceremony. 

In an effort to move forward, comments and suggested changes were provided. The parents were also notified that the speech required revisions and the deadline for those revisions. The student was asked on more than one occasion to provide a revised draft of the speech for review but chose not to do so. The student failed to abide by the pre-screening rules applicable to all students giving speeches at the ceremony. The Valedictorian further failed to follow guidelines of the evening by removing the sleeves of his graduation gown. The school provided another gown for use at the event. 

At that time, in a conversation with members of board of directors and the student’s parents, it was decided to pull his speech from the evening’s ceremonies. This was done to protect the solemnity of the evening and to preserve and protect the mission of the school. 

The school’s attorney, Barry Arrington, said, “First Amendment law in this area reflects common sense. As the Supreme Court has noted, everyone knows that in our society high school graduation is one of life’s most significant occasions, and a graduation ceremony is a time for family and those closest to the students to celebrate success and express mutual wishes of gratitude and respect. It is not a time for a student to use his commencement speech to push his personal agenda on a captive audience, and school officials are well within their rights to prevent that from happening.” 

Twin Peaks Charter School is a multi-year winner of the Colorado Department of Education’s John Irwin School of Excellence Award. All students are known, valued, and challenged to achieve personal best.  

BTW, nobody knows my sexual orientation and that’s how it’s going to remain. Far be it from me to risk boring my readers with TMI.

National Weather Service forecast. A shower lasting an hour or less is refreshing, but spare us the steady rain lasting for days!

Tonight at my campsite: Nathan’s Famous beef franks (fully cooked).

Boulder Shelter Summer Bed program residents napping in the neighborhood, and more

A LITTLE MORE ACCOUNTABILITY, A LITTLE LESS ENABLING

By Max R. Weller

This is what I anticipated would happen, when I first heard about Boulder Shelter for the Homeless’s Summer Bed program, intended to increase the number of beds available to homeless men and women after the emergency overnight dorms closed on May 1st.

Because nothing at all goes on in any of the programs at BSH during the daytime hours from 8AM until 5PM — no GED classes, no on-site access to social services agencies, no 12-step groups for substance abusers seeking to get clean and sober (nor is any of this available in the nighttime hours) — these Summer Bed clients just hang around the neighborhood all day. Yesterday, there were several of ’em gathered on the wall in front of the Mexican restaurant in the 4900 block of N. Broadway. Fortunately, they were sober, but lying down and taking a nap in full view of passersby is not exactly contributing to positive vibes for anyone who lives or works there. Me? I’ve been there for years and everyone accepts me; after all, I’m the guy who tries to keep the area reasonably free from litter and rowdy drunks, too.

I understand these Summer Bed program residents are unable to get a good night’s sleep inside the facility, but in the absence of that what in blazes is the point of increasing the number of people staying overnight? I know: Boulder do-gooders will be favorably impressed and then increase their financial support for BSH.

What a crock!

Photo taken at the Boulder Bandshell in Central Park.

I’ve never wanted to sleep on any hard surface in full view of the public; better to find a grassy spot out of sight, where you might actually relax. However, there is an element among the homeless population who likes to give the finger to society by doing silly crap like this — and that worthless bunch is supported by local do-gooders led by Joy Eckstine Redstone and Isabel McDevitt.

More misleading Housing First propaganda:

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From Boulder Shelter for the Homeless on Facebook

I’ve been in Salt Lake City. The “chronically homeless” have always been a small percentage of the overall homeless population there, just as in any other city. Tell us, what are the OVERALL homeless numbers in SLC these days? Hmmm? My educated guess, based on what I can find online from various shelter/services providers there, is that there are as many or more homeless folks on the streets now. It’s like you want to brag about your baseball team’s pitcher striking out a dozen opposing batters — but ignoring the fact that he gave up twenty hits and eight earned runs and your team LOST.

BTW, BSH will do anything to distract you from their own Housing First circus at 1175 Lee Hill, where things are not going well at all . . .

As I was leaving the shelter at 4869 N. Broadway this morning after my daily hot shower, the only reason I go there at all, the paramedics were talking to some scurvy bum in the atrium, as a couple of staff members looked on. I could tell from everyone’s body language that they weren’t pleased by this homeless individual. Sure enough, after I boarded the SKIP bus outside, a few minutes before scheduled departure southbound on Broadway, Boulder PD arrived and took the bum into custody. How much did these emergency services cost Boulder taxpayers? Guess what, the Housing First clients right next door are continuing to use them, too, and there are no “savings” once you get down to the nitty-gritty of it.

kx3ot

Public Service Announcement

I did take along a breakfast burrito, courtesy of the Thursday morning breakfast volunteers at the shelter, and I’ll eat it for lunch when I get back to my neighborhood. Unless, of course, my appetite is ruined by “Doris” and her extensive outbreak of ringworm. Without her inebriated shenanigans on the corner of N. Broadway & U.S. 36 yesterday, generous passersby donated $21 to me between 3:30 and 4:30PM. Everybody’s happy, when the bums go elsewhere!

That’s all for now; be back tomorrow.

How many Boulderites have never seen cattle? And more

A LITTLE MORE ACCOUNTABILITY, A LITTLE LESS ENABLING

By Max R. Weller

Read Boulder cattle get a moo-ve on in push to tame tall oatgrass in the Daily Camera. Quoting from the story below:

“It’s definitely the Wild West,” said Sierra Stowell, of Martin Acres, who was on the trail for a run with her Italian mastiff, Sweet Pea. “It’s remembering the way that Colorado was. I love seeing this. It’s completely unexpected, coming around the corner and seeing all these cows.”

Huh? It’s the way Colorado is NOW, Sierra. That you, or anyone else, living inside the Boulder Bubble expresses surprise when reality intrudes says a great deal about your own disconnect with the Real World . . . BTW, how many people anywhere have seen an Italian mastiff?

Damned ugly mutt, if you ask me.

More Boulder weirdness in this letter-to-the-editor of the DC. Sorry, I don’t drink milk very often, but when I do I want it to come from a cow.

“Doris” the cardboard box-dweller, and former 1175 Lee Hill Housing First resident, showed up at Boulder Shelter for the Homeless this morning with one of her male friends; she was still staggering after a couple of days being pickled. A word about this male friend — he’s one of the homeless characters who spends hours each day wandering around the neighborhood and nearby countryside, looking under every bush and into every nook and cranny of buildings, anywhere that others might seek to stash their camping gear and miscellaneous property. Draw your own conclusions as to his motivation. As far as I’m concerned, both Doris (NOT her real name) and her companion are a waste of good oxygen.

There really are people like Anton Jackson (portrayed by Damon Wayans) right here in Boulder, CO. Check out the YouTube video.

I’m hoping for no more than an occasional thunderstorm in the afternoons from now until next Fall. As long as I have a fairly new tarp, I can cope with the rain, up until the point where the ground is saturated and water starts standing on the surface. Still hoping to find an old barn for shelter next winter:

On Bobolink Trail in Boulder, CO

Tonight at my campsite: cheese sandwiches on wheat bread with Dijon mustard.

Boulder Shelter pansies in full bloom

A LITTLE MORE ACCOUNTABILITY, A LITTLE LESS ENABLING

By Max R. Weller

The premise of these so-called programs at Boulder Shelter for the Homeless (First Step/Transition, Summer Bed Program, Housing First), or any other homeless shelter/services provider, is twofold: 1) To offer a pathway for the helpless and needy clients to become independent, productive citizens; and 2) To appeal to both public and private sources for financial support, never minding that #1 is phony baloney. In fact, the tiny percentage of chronically homeless people who do “get back on their feet” do so on their own, and don’t need the distractions of scamming ne’er-do-wells in any program.

The most that can be hoped for is to warehouse the chronically homeless and lessen the chances they will die on the streets. Having said that, I hasten to add that letting them drink themselves to death in brand new apartments at 1175 Lee Hill (over $200,000 apiece) is no better — dead is dead.

When I arrived at BSH this morning around 5:15, I heard somebody chanting gibberish in the atrium as I waited outside for the door to open at 6AM:

O, bumatee bumatee bumatee

O, bumatee bumatee bumatee

O, bumatee bumatee bumatee

I haven’t any clue what this is supposed to mean, and I’ve given it a phonetic spelling above. It went on continuously for almost ten minutes. I almost rang the doorbell to summon staff, thinking that this precious little program doper was suffering some sort of seizure.

Shortly after it ceased, Rain Man — the guy who admits he came here to Boulder for the weed and is angry about the recent rainy weather — arrived and started telling on himself again! This time, he detailed the larcenous scheme that he and a friend are trying to pull off at local retail establishments; one guy will shoplift merchandise, then the other guy will return it at a later time to get a refund. I can’t believe this works very often, in the absence of a store receipt, and Rain Man himself is so STOOPID he doesn’t understand that being in possession of stolen property is also a crime, just like stealing in the first place. Well, guess what? Rain Man wants to get into the Summer Bed program, in the belief that he can continue to smoke dope and commit petty crimes in the community, and it looks like he will succeed.

Apparently, nobody on staff at BSH is either smart enough or attentive enough to listen to Rain Man telling on himself inside the facility . . .

I have to update the circumstances of the Housing First client — let’s call her “Doris” — who was recently evicted for inviting her drunken friends to stay overnight in her apartment (a BIG no-no without express permission, and then only a few nights per month). She has moved into a nearby field, into a large cardboard box with a small doggie door cut out at the bottom. She is sharing this humble abode with two guys, and yesterday she was so intoxicated she could barely stand upright as she panhandled on the corner of N. Broadway & U.S. 36. Doris (NOT her real name) used to stay down around Baseline in south Boulder, but the 1175 Lee Hill Wet House brought her north, and now my neighborhood may be stuck with her presence for the foreseeable future. Thanks for nothing, Greg Harms and Betsey Martens!

harmsmartens

Shutting off the Q & A with north Boulder residents in re Housing First

In addition, this pickled HF alumnus has lost her eyeglasses, and crawls over the barbed-wire fence leading into the field with her cardboard home, instead of walking through either one of two gaps about 10′ wide.

I’ve been drunk many times in the past, before I sobered up more than a dozen years ago, but I don’t believe I was ever as pathetic as Doris. I could be wrong, however; does jogging nekkid at midnight on deserted country roads back in Missouri count?

In closing, today’s Boulder Shelter Pansy Prize has to go to the program resident who was begging staff to make another BIG pot of coffee, when the first ran out, because he lacks the foresight to buy his own instant coffee like I do. No doubt, he has money for cigarettes, booze, and dope; everything else he should be able to get FREE. This is, after all, what local do-gooders led by Joy Eckstine Redstone and Isabel McDevitt are teaching the bums to expect from society.

Addendum: The National Weather Service forecast is looking better, finally. It hasn’t been so bad for me, with books to read and snacks to eat when I’m forced to crawl into my burrow.

Rain through the weekend, and more

A LITTLE MORE ACCOUNTABILITY, A LITTLE LESS ENABLING

By Max R. Weller

As it turns out, I did spend the last three nights indoors with friends, who often seem more concerned for my welfare than I am. I appreciate it! As I was walking across Norlin Quad just a while ago, the sun was almost breaking through the cloud cover, and I’m hoping there will be only intermittent showers this weekend. See National Weather Service forecast. My tarps are where I left them on Tuesday morning, so I’ll be able to stay reasonably dry tonight; I may just use my camping pad and pillow, instead of getting my new sleeping bag from my locker at Boulder Shelter for the Homeless (along with a couple of “homeless disaster blankets”), because I’ll be warm enough in my winter coat with temps in the 40s. All of my outdoor gear is soaked, of course, from my ill-advised slumber in a ditch which flooded shortly after 3AM three days ago. When the sunshine returns, I’ll be able to spread everything out to dry.

 I continue to be on the lookout for the public release of Metro Denver Homeless Initiative’s 2015 Point-in-Time Reports, as worthless as they’ve become in recent years due to the serious undercounting of the homeless population. Because I don’t care to be helpful in increasing funding for our local homeless shelter/services providers, I refuse to participate in this “census” — but it is interesting to compare figures from the City of Boulder with those from the City of Longmont. Regardless of the numbers, the nonprofits will continue to seek more money from both public and private sources . . .

That’s all for now. Time to play online chess!

Boulder Shelter transient curses rain and says, ‘I just came here for the weed!’

A LITTLE MORE ACCOUNTABILITY, A LITTLE LESS ENABLING

By Max R. Weller

Consider this a bonus blog post for today . . .

The headline above is true — and this guy is probably twenty years younger than the Homeless Philosopher. As several of us were waiting for Boulder Shelter for the Homeless to open this morning at 6AM, he admitted the truth of his cannabis addiction, and went on to add that he was hoping to get into the Summer Program [for transients], since he doesn’t drink alcohol and weed is okay.

He might want to rethink that; you can’t smoke dope of any kind in BSH’s programs, either.

Rain Man said that he might as well have gone to Seattle, WA where it also rains every day, instead of Boulder, CO:

“Marijuana has made me an idiot savant, or at least an idiot.”

Remember, this is what your donations to our local homeless shelter/services providers supports.

‘When it rains, it pours’ and more

A LITTLE MORE ACCOUNTABILITY, A LITTLE LESS ENABLING

By Max R. Weller

I’d thought that I was prepared for several days of rainfall here in Boulder, CO — after returning from my indoor vacation in Longmont — but I did not NOT foresee being evicted yesterday afternoon from the spot where I’ve stayed since August, 2013. I can’t complain about it; I’m informed the owner wants to sell that property now and understandably doesn’t want anyone’s camping gear left there during the day, when prospective buyers might stop by to look at this prime piece of real estate. One year and nine months is by far the longest stretch of time that I’ve camped anywhere, since moving to Boulder back in February, 2008. I’m grateful for the “wink and a nod” I receive at each new campsite, but nothing lasts forever in the homeless lifestyle.

Anyway, I decided to move for the night to a nearby ditch. It’s a shallow one, and in all the years I’ve observed rainwater drainage in my neighborhood, I’d NEVER seen this spot get wet. Well, you can probably guess what happened: I was soaked to the skin about 3:20AM as the water rose (to my chagrin), all of my outdoors gear is soaked with no chance for it to dry out today, and the forecast is NOT good temperature-wise. See: National Weather Service forecast in the Daily Camera.

I’m hoping that I’ll be able to muddle through tonight with my new sleeping bag, still in my locker at Boulder Shelter for the Homeless in case of an emergency, and a couple of wool-blend “homeless disaster blankets” from BSH as well, with my new tarp over all of it at a more secure location.

Are we headed for a repeat of the 2013 Great Flood?

Four Mile Creek underpass at N. Broadway & Rosewood in September, 2013

I neglected to publicly thank one of my friends in north Boulder, who brought me some homemade BEEF vegetable soup and Fig Newtons on Sunday afternoon during a break in the rain. In my experience, Good People like this outnumber the anonymous online cowards by 100-1, and the most generous folks in Boulder County belong to the working poor and middle class. I’ve yet to meet a wealthy do-gooder who understands what compassion truly is.

I surely do wish I could put up a tent on friends’ property, as shelter from both rain and snow, but either city bureaucrats or the neighborhood HOA involved would put the kibosh on that . . .

Wish me luck tonight and in the coming days, too!