A LITTLE MORE ACCOUNTABILITY, A LITTLE LESS ENABLING
By Max R. Weller
Yesterday morning, I decided to use a new slogan on my sign as I played the role of humble beggar on the corner of N. Broadway & U.S. 36:
OWN HOMELESS —
READ MY BLOG:
It received favorable comments from several passersby and sour looks from only two, who were probably associated in some way with the local homeless shelter/services industry — whose creed continues to be More Homeless People = More Money. If scores (maybe hundreds) of transients come from Denver and elsewhere, so what? The nonprofits can appeal for more funding from both public and private sources to enable the bums; there is literally NO incentive to “end” homelessness NOR even to properly “address” the issue.
Anyway, Dipso Doris (not her real name) was sitting on the wall in front of the Mexican restaurant in the 4900 block of N. Broadway when I arrived, in the company of the former Shouting Joe from St. Louis (apparently too ill since getting out of jail to be his usual LOUD self). They were both inebriated to the point of hardly being able to walk. As I ate my breakfast of salami/cheese sandwiches and glanced at the Sunday edition of the Daily Camera, they decided to wander down to the businesses farther south. About 10AM, I observed Doris coming back, but she only got as far as Boulder Shelter for the Homeless before literally falling out from the sidewalk into Broadway, which had a fair amount of traffic at that time. Luckily, somebody else with a cell phone saw her and immediately called 9-1-1, and both Boulder police and the paramedics arrived on the scene quickly. The ambulance transported Doris somewhere, but she was back on the wall by 3PM and ready to panhandle for more money to buy cheap rotgut booze. Tell me, people, how do you feel about paying for this farce of emergency services for Dipso Doris and the many others like her in Boulder, CO? Bear in mind — Doris was evicted from Housing First at 1175 Lee Hill, so that’s not a solution at all . . .
BTW, Quiet Joe had returned before Doris came back from wherever paramedics took her, and he was flying a sign on the corner after I’d finished for the day shortly after 11AM. He was seated on a bucket at the end of the median, but kept nodding off with his eyes closed; he remarked to me afterward that he hadn’t made any money . . . NOT hard to understand.
No hay dinero para los borrachos.
True, Kansas City, MO and other places I’ve lived while homeless also have their share of substance abusers, but Boulder has a greater proportion of its population under the influence of mind-altering substances than I’ve seen elsewhere.
America’s Smartest City, indeed.
I picked up a James Patterson novel, co-authored by one of his army of collaborators, and read it in its entirety yesterday: ZOO. I’m no fan of this author, but his very short chapters are good when you’re distracted by obnoxious drunkards, and this particular book did not have a happy ending, which is all too common. Read it at your own risk, especially if you’re a dog owner.
Tonight at my campsite: meatball sandwiches and chips.