Friday, November 7, 2008

Spread the Wealth

2008 held many firsts for many people. One of my firsts was that I went to a pumpkin patch. It was crazy fun; we saw the Lock Ness Monster and rode a train. The old man ate a hot dog, and when that happens everyone's day is a little better.

The pumpkin I picked out was beautiful. It was a striped and speckled white and orange pumpkin, fat and round, and brought sunshine to my life everyday that I walked out my front door.

Yesterday, I was gone for 13 hours volunteering. When I came back, my pumpkin was gone.
The hobo left one of my pumpkins, a traditional orange one that I love just as much, but they stole my spotted owl. I call it stealing, maybe you call it spreading the wealth around.

Does Barack Obama advocate stealing pumpkins? He advocates volunteering. In fact Barack Obama says he will force everyone to volunteer. He will take away your freedom unless you volunteer; not take away your pumpkins. I volunteered and it's not even inaguration day yet, so why did some bum spread my pumpkins around?

No one stole my pumpkin last year. It was 100 pounds. No one stole it I presume because they physically couldn't.
If they could have, I'm sure they would have.

(Check out those awesome leaves! Oh yeah!)

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Clueless

If you are wondering, the best lottery game currently raving amongst the hobo community is: CLUE. Technically you are paying for those lottery tickets, but hey - you are just spreading the wealth around right?

When we first walked into Albertsons we overheard a conversation between Mr. Cokehead and some little school kid.

Bum: "Don't drop out of school kid,... just trust me, don't."

Free PSA, and the first time I ever trusted a bum!

Shockingly, he got one foot in front of the other with enough prowess to make it from the front doors over to the customer service counter where he purchased two clue lottery tickets for $15 each. I thought he had frosting in his eyes they were so totally glazed over. After his 6 minute transaction, he stepped over to the side, and horded in on the next customers transaction.

Bum: "Really, you oughta get one of these clue tickets."

Customer: "Okay? I think I'm covered."

Bum: "No! You have to!"

Customer: "Alright, I'll take that into consideration."

Bum: "Seriously, they are so awesome! You scratch here and here and then over here, and then this over here (imagine pointing) tells you your winnings and then down here you scratch and you get something extra special. They are definitely worth the money, I always at least break even."

Priceless.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Plausible Deniability

The rumors are true, I'm a poser.

But the suburbs have a couple perks. I can't think of any, but I'm sure there are some; kind of like the new president.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Ode to the Library

Oh, very nice, to be oogled and dawdled over by the weirdo bums and skeezy hobo's downtown.

Such a simple task: walk down the street to the library. Not here.

Jaw open. Eyes wide. Crrrreaked neck. Nostrils flared. Smelly Body. Unkempt hair. And business suit, weird, and go figure. Licking lips.

"Oh, yeah, oh yeeeaaaah. Nice!"

Really people, I don't look that good; not nearly. But then again, I guess that is the point because if I did look that good, the only people oogling and dawdling wouldn't all be homeless.

Our library has benches lining the sidewalks around the block upon which the library rests. These benches are made of concrete with Latin inscriptions comprised of the benefits of knowledge and reading. I've always found the juxtaposition between what the library represents and the majority of individuals who take up post around the library fascinating.

For one, there are the regular drug dealers. The regular drug dealers who deal in broad daylight, in front of the public library; which brings into question how/why if the one remaining drug free person in the NW knows where to gain the easiest access to some c/toke, how/why such reckless exchanges are tolerated.

The wig lady. Why is she called the wig lady? Oh, just because she will never be seen without 4-9 wigs atop her massive head. You know those folks who can't go to the mailbox without applying a fresh face of make-up? This lady can't, nay won't, roam the city streets which she calls home without her many wigs.

And for my last description: The Frauds. These are the ones who you can spot a mile away, even when there is fog, because they've got a clipboard and eyes that scream, "I want you," kinda like that Uncle Sam recruitment poster, except the Uncle Sam poster isn't going to first of all speak, much less ask you for 5 minutes of your time which really means 5 hours. Nor is it going to take your signature and use it to fraudulently sign up for 50 different voter registration cards and then vote for NObama, or 50 different credit card/porn sites/work at home offers respectively totalling 150, not to mention all the new phone calls your voicemail can't contain because it wasn't really created to save useless pre-recorded messages.

This is my ode to the library!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Where Am I?

For many, many years - too long in fact - I worked at the mall. At the time, I remember thinking that the mall was pretty nice. I remember enjoying going there, spending lunch in the food court, I think I even spent some of my days off there. For a while, we even lived across the street. Unless my judgement was grossly miscalculated, this mall has taken a drastic turn for the worse.

Today as I was walking through the mall on my way to the bathroom I walked past a gaggle of girls behaving mischievously.

One of them looked directly at me and shouted, "Don't look at me like that," as she cocked her head side to side.

My eyes darted back and forth and I turned to scan my surroundings. "What?" I almost mustered. Luckily I witnessed the girl behind me giving Miss Thang the evil eye before I mustered a syllable and found myself in the middle of an altercation.

A few moments later I found myself in the bathroom. Whether it was the same group of girls, or a different group remains to be determined, but I overheard this conversation:

"My friend was in here once, and she was jus sitting there doin' her thing, mindin' her bizness when..."

"Yeaaa?" the other girl encouraged.

"Whack!"

"She gots smacked on the toliet?"

"That's right! She was just there, on the toliet, when some *$#&@ smacked her on the head!"

"Dammmmn, how?" her friend inquired. (I too wondered how this occurred...)

"The $%^@& came over the top of the stall. I guess she pissed them off or sumthing, because right then as she was peeing they thuomped her across the face."

"That is crazy! I hope that don't happen none to me."

Well sister, me too, I hope that don't happen none to me.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Why Lie?

I was toggling back and forth between the east and west side of town yesterday via public transit enjoying the Cinemas Canned Food Festival. It's really too bad if you missed it. Several theater chains across America were offering free movies in exchange for 3 cans of food. I definitely optimized my viewing pleasure.

On one such trip on the train a man entered carrying a sign: "Why Lie? Need Beer?" Apparently though, beer was not something that he needed because not only was he headed to Skidmore Fountain to score some wicked awesome weed, but he was fully intoxicated already. It's just my opinion, but I think perhaps a good idea may have been to detox before the next downing session.

In any event, he sat next to me - of course. It's not like the train was nearly empty. Actually, he sat across from me, and his younger apprentice sat next to me. I was reading my book, so naturally they interrupted. Well,... I can't escape all the blame. I made the mistake of looking up at him. His speech was so slurred, I admit, I could not help myself. There sat a squat little man dirty skinned and stinky lacking a proper balance of hormones to enable growth of a full beard. Evidently, my face signaled: "Welcome All Conversation! Intelligible Or Not!"

Then he winked. Er, blinked, but as he thought he was winking and had the intention of winking we'll call it that. I immediately averted my eyes.

"Did you hear that?"

I ignore.

"Hey... did you hear that?"

I smiled in the upside down frown sort of way that I've managed to perfect over the past year that screams talk to me again and I'll punch you in the nuts.

His friend said, "Yeah man, she heard you." And adds to me, "Sorry, he's a little drunk."

Oh really, I couldn't tell. At which point winky stood up and heralded his sign for everyone to see, I suppose in the hopes of earning a little green.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Give it Up

I was walking with the pooches on a typically singular, forested trail in the middle of the city. We felt a bit adventurous, and because we had walked this trail an irregular number of times, we decided to check out all the side diversions along the path.

Now, supposedly this trail goes on and on and on for many several miles yet I have never been able to find the continuation of this trail after a certain point. Today just as we were nearing the point of confusion, I found a tributary of the main path.

Remember that publication I was telling you about, provided to and for the hobo's of this fair city to sell for profit? In a recent issue there was an article discussing a new bill passing through congress about providing the bums with camping spots throughout the city. (I won't go into this.....)

I'm kind of giving away the ending, but yes, off the path was a couple of vagrants - camping. I was a bit surprised and shocked, not expecting this little present of course. I wish now that I had continued on to see if the trail continued, but I actually thought that I shouldn't interrupt them!! Due to this lapse in judgment I have no further details to offer, except that their smell did precede the actual visual.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Crack Purchase

First off, if you are reading my blog via Google Reader - that's awesome! but you are missing all the fun. Go to my page to participate in a real time poll; humor me, please...

I was having dinner with a couple friends, well only one was my personal friend, but I like to think I have more than one friend so let's just go with the whole "friends" idea. I mean it's novel enough just to be having dinner with someone other than my old man so let me have my pipe dream.

We were sitting in a booth next to an open window, adjacent to several tables where upon several groups were enjoying, I assume, as good a meal as my black and tan brownie. Stumbling his way down the block comes, none other than a drunk or high or both bumbling bum. He interrupted the first group of people he encountered:

"Uh, heeeeyyyyy man... yuuuh, can I snag a cig from youuuu?" he muttered.

The man reached across the table and produced a filthy black stick of tar. Here.

"Ooooh wow man. Heeere, leemmme give youuu a quarterr," he slurred accepting the offering.

The man said nothing, gestured nothing, but ignored the vagrant and attempted to continue his conversation.

"Okayyyy, whatevvver."

He paused. "Wannnt some craack?"

Seriously? Want some crack? Don't hold anything back hobo.

This is where it gets better. About an hour later we were venturing back to our car, and the rascal was holding post on the corner where my vehicle was parked: selling newspapers. Now, this is not uncommon in this fair city. Our city produces a local newspaper, sold for a $1, for the express purpose of giving the homeless a job. The hobo keeps $0.75 and the consumer gets to keep themselves abreast of the going ons in the homeless community. It's a win win.

Except this crack fiend wasn't selling the hobo news. He was selling the free local newspaper that he pulled out of the dispenser on the very corner he was stationed.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Screaming Rants

"Whooooo hhhheeeea aaaahhhiiiii ddddduuuuuu! Eeeeekkkkkk lllllllaaaaa looooooo ffiiiiii feeeeeee foooooo offffffummmmm! Boooo bbaaaaa bleeeeeee nnnnntttttiiiiiiiii aaaaakkkkkkk wwwwwppppppppsssssssskkk! Buy me a cheeseburger!"

"Shut-up! I ain't buying you a cheeseburger."

"WOMAN! I said get me a cheeseburger!"

"Garble, gruntle." Insert dirty glare. "I SAID, 'I AIN'T BUYING YOU A CHEESEBURGER!"

"Boooo bbaaaaa bleeeeeee nnnnntttttiiiiiiiii aaaaakkkkkkk wwwwwppppppppsssssssskkk! Whooooo hhhheeeea aaaahhhiiiii ddddduuuuuu! Eeeeekkkkkk lllllllaaaaa looooooo ffiiiiii feeeeeee foooooo offffffummmmm! Buy me a CHEESEBURGER you stupid bleep.

Our McDonalds has a walk through. It's like a drive through, but for bums without a car. This night it was for a crazy, bra-less, saggy, toothless bum.

Her petitioner was dancing around in the driveway of the drive through exit. I heard the preceding exchange as I was waiting for my meal. Actually my husbands meal that I was taking to him as I picked him up for work because I refuse to eat at McDonalds (for the record).

The petitioner was performing a dance for me, and I didn't dare honk at him. I didn't dare because he was violently drunk, and my windows were rolled down. I calculated that the amount of time it would take me to get my windows rolled up was not sufficient enough to thwart an attack. Had I rolled my windows up without taunting the decrepit hobo, it would surely have elicited an attack just the same.

In fact, me sitting there; patiently waiting, seemed to taunt him enough. And he certainly didn't appreciate the fact that my dogs were barking at him out the window.

He pattered around there, dancing for an interminable amount of time, jumping off to the side, out of the way, but only to jump right back in front of my car immediately thereafter. Staring at me with his bug eyes, flinging his head forward in my direction and opening his mouth so wide I thought another head would pop out at any moment. It was deeply disturbing and unsettling.

Another bummy was curled up on the patch of soil surrounding the sidewalk tree, while another bummy came walking from around the other side of Mc's.

"What the bleep are you doing? Dancing?" That's how I figured out he was dancing, by the way.

"Shut the bleep up. I'll do what I want."

Then he started screaming, or should I say, resumed screaming.

"Whooooo hhhheeeea aaaahhhiiiii ddddduuuuuu! Eeeeekkkkkk lllllllaaaaa looooooo ffiiiiii feeeeeee foooooo offffffummmmm, bleeeeeee nnnnntttttiiiiiiiii. Boooo bbaaaaa bleeeeeee nnnnntttttiiiiiiiii aaaaakkkkkkk wwwwwppppppppsssssssskkk! Whooooo hhhheeeea aaaahhhiiiii ddddduuuuuu! Eeeeekkkkkk lllllllaaaaa looooooo ffiiiiii feeeeeee foooooo offffffummmmm."

But what was shockingly impressive was that he kept up the dancing and flinging of the head, and disturbing opening of the mouth too. I'm always surprised at how limber and coordinated these drunks can be.

Let's conduct a poll. Was it intentional coordination, or freaky uncontrolled spasms? Rock the vote!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Through the Looking Glass

I arrived home the other night, from a surprisingly delightful evening at my parents. The old man and I had to play a round of Dr. Mario before heading to bed, and then as usual, we had to check our email; so goes the ritual.

As I made my way across the room primarily unscathed and sat before the monitor, waiting because our computer might as well be as old as a Commodore 64, I noticed a rock in the middle of the floor. My better half has a tendency to find things in nature that he wants to paint, brings them home and then does nothing with them; I figured this was one of those items.

Or so I thought until I noticed a trail of glass patterning a spray from the window in all directions. I glanced at the window to find a couple broken slats in the mini blinds. That's right, some bum (presumably, I can't discount that I pissed someone off) picked up a rock (it doesn't help that the outside of our property is lined with them) and launched it through our window with enough force to break the screen, both window panes and forcefully rip the slats of our mini blinds.

Despite the amazing feats the CSI team is able to accomplish, the police could offer nothing except a suggestion that we get our windows fixed as soon as possible. Plural, yes. While waiting for the blue man group we discovered that both our street facing windows were smashed by rocks.

What a friendly hello! Or maybe, I have a secret admirer that missed the lesson about throwing pebbles to alert your love interest, not ginormous stones.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Graffiti

Everyday I walk by the Hostel on 18th. Everyday I look at the massive 6'x10' sign that reads: OBAMA and some gibberish.

Well it reads: GIBBERISH and some other gibberish.

What I find both humorous and telling is that since the first day this sign was hung out to dry, it was painted with thick sweeping white strokes of graffiti. Since day one, others have added to the art by offering prostitutes phone numbers in the big letter of O, drawings of private body parts in B, offensive four letter words in A, pictures of lude acts in M, and gang poetry in the final A, not to mention a plethora of other choice narrative throughout the sign.

Isn't it funny that this sign represents Obama's entire political career? How he didn't do anything about crime rampant throughout Chicago? How he drove through the slums every day on his way to work, working tirelessly to do nothing whatsoever? How he is a dirty smoker pouring graffiti into his body daily? How he and his wife spout flem and diarrhea and bile every day of their waking lives?

I kind of like the sign now; it represents the truth.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Crosswalk x Deux

Hooooly Mackerel!

How many times do I have to explain how a crosswalk works? If you are driving a car and you encounter an intersection - stop. Put your foot on the brakes! If there is a person on the sidewalk, if there are white stripes on the concrete, and most importantly if there is someone in the middle of the street - don't take your foot off the brake. If you haven't stopped yet, and there is someone in the middle of the street - stop.

And that, people, is how a crosswalk works!

I was crossing the street today - at a crosswalk, white stripes across the concrete - when an idiot driving his car through the intersection decides he doesn't need to stop. I'm on his side of the street, just a few steps into the crosswalk. He slows down just a bit and attempts to inch past me. Maybe he couldn't see over his massive white beard - or maybe he was just too old to make out that the shapes in front of him were people!

As if this act alone isn't a big enough offense, I am walking my two dogs. One is ahead of me and the douchebag in the car, but the other is behind me just stepping off the sidewalk. At this point, the car is between me and my little dog. And, even though I am clearly, indisputably, no question about it holding two leashes in two separate hands, he continues to inch forward.

We are face to face. I glare, he looks at me stupidly. I call my little dog, and the driver thinks this is a signal for him to continue forward, even though I'm in FRONT OF HIS CAR!!

Finally, I've just had it with this bum, so I yell at him, slowly: "STOP YOUR CAR."

He looks at me even stupider than he did before, as if that's humanly possible. And I'm so mad, that I get in his face (through the window at least) and yell as loud as possible, "WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU???!!!!"

Fortunately, me and my two little doggies made it through the ordeal. Ridiculous!

After I made it across the street a woman pulled up next to me and rolled down her window, "I stopped for you." She tells me, almost asking to be granted clemency.

I assure her, "Yes, thank you! You are great! I can't believe that guy!"

She agrees, "Yeah, that was pretty awful!"

Saturday, August 9, 2008

My back itches

We were technically driving outside of the technical downtown boundaries, but in a trendy area nonetheless, and I live downtown, so it all applies. We reached a stoplight at the top of a hill. On the corner a man was standing there with a sign. He was a ways off, so my husband and I strained to read it.

You have to read the signs here, without feeling ashamed, it's part of the culture. It's a competition among bums, of sorts.
"Too ugly to prostitute. Too Lazy to Steal."
"Help? (Other side) For Beer?"
"It's Hot! I need Beer!"
"25 cents for free insults."
"How dare you not help me!"

Much to our surprise this guy was not a bum, but a vendor. He was selling back scratchers, 3 for $5! What a steal! We watched him for a minute waiting for the light to turn when he pulled out a device, lifted his right arm high into the air, waved the wand around for a minute and began scratching his back as he wiggled his legs and body around performing a dance for us.

Okay, how can we just drive off at this point? I pulled over and the old man got out to buy a couple of scratchers. We received a fancy compact and retractable purse scratcher, a standard scratcher, and a scratcher that had rolly balls on the opposite end for therapeutic reasons.

The scratchers came with a card:

FRONT:
Grouped Thronged Collects Selected Conveyance
Back Scratchers
BSXBS
Benevolent Society
No/License # /Bond # /Insurance # Non /Taxable /Deductible
Not Associated with Back Scratchers Museum Museum: 60th and Belmont
B.S x B.S. and B.S.M. may or may not be independent creations of the Bills in mind
BACK:
B S & B S MISSION
In order to thank those who scratch the backs of those whose backs need scratching - We Thanks each Backscratcher with which to scratch their own backs so be it that we that can be scratched on the the back so can we scratch back the back of those back scratchers who have scratched our backs.
PARODY without parody, THANK YOU
SCRATCHERS GRANTED EXTRA SMILES PER GALLON

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Permanent Fixture

With the exception of the overweight female who perches in front of the Washington Mutual Bank everyday, I rarely ever see the same bum twice. Well, make that two exceptions. The wig lady is a permanent fixture of this fair city. I encountered her just the other day getting advice from a fellow street traveler about where to get free meals.

I have always been under the impression that begging on the same street corner without variation would be counterproductive; apparently this is not the case though. I overhead the resident bank female telling her story to a pedestrian:

"We come out here everyday, me and my dogs, just long enough until we make enough to meet our needs for the day. And everyday, I see the crack dealers dealing drugs, pick pocketing and stealing, but not me. I'm not trying to fool anyone, and that's why I come back to the same place everyday."

I was reminded of this story today when I was at McDonald's. I was picking out a movie. A woman was walking out of the restaurant when a man says to her, "Is that your mother?"

"Yes," she replied annoyed.

With a sallow face he answered, "What a fine specimen!" and immediately began to cackle hideously.

I turned around to see who the ladies man was... and I found myself face to face with... none other than... I couldn't believe it! It was the defective counting death row dwarf!

He's a scary guy. Seriously.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Points of Interest

Even though I found myself immersed in duping (as much as that is possible) a lonely Nigerian scammer, much has been happening in terms of bums, vagrants and downtown happenings. Finally, I'm happy to report.

Today I found myself at the DHS office, and that is a scary place to find oneself.

Let me tell you about a few of the characters I witnessed there; witnessed, not encountered - that would insinuate interaction and although I stole a few glances for purposes of later documentation and reporting, I was careful not to submerge. While I am typically courageous in the face of danger from the local drunk bums, I also am in a position to run away if the situation becomes dire although more often than not that drunk bum is in no position to possess the energy or life force to raise even the tiniest finger, and this is why today I stole only the most furtive glances: The truth is now written for the world, like most others, I only taunt those who lack the prowess to taunt, or impose bodily harm in retribution.

And finally * will stand for any number of expletives - insert your pick, you won't be wrong.

Upon arrival the first "lady", corn rolls surrounding the skull and a head full of braids cascading down her back, likely integrated with a weave, was screaming at everyone in there who ain't got no * sense! And she was old, with no bra (you are welcome for the visual). She just wanted * someone to * tell her * someones * number! And if * someone don't * tell her, she's going to * put a bullet through their * head just like she * did to that other * and she ain't been * caught because * no one saw * nothing!

The next guy had corn rolls too. In fact, everyone there had corn rolls. He had a big fat gap in his front teeth, and he was a short guy. But I'll let him tell you about that. He has been in solitary confinement for 8 * years and on * death row during that * time too! Most states won't * put a dwarf on * death row because they are a * dwarf - yeah he's only * 4' * 8", but not this * place. He's been on death row for 10 * years. They let him out for * 15 minutes in the yards, before they * put him back in that black * hole. It's * the pits! They let him * shower but * guys got scabies and * and he * don't want that! So, he refused to * shower for 11 * years! And he's a * dwarf - that's * right!

Then the dwarf, and a * white * girl, got in a pissing contest. The white * girl, while pretending to act like a social worker, thought the * dwarf was asking her a question, but the dwarf was talking to another * white girl, and the other * white girl needed to calm the * down! The other white girl was not having that though, and she demanded he calm the * down! Also, it's not fair for the rich people to have access to all the * bathrooms. Them people needed * bathrooms too! Sometimes it just ain't fit to piss on the street!

Then some * got on the phone and needed to call his * . He is about to come into some * money. A couple * hundred dollars, and he really needs that * money. He's going to sell Beckham's * LA jersey on * eBay or something. It's going to be * awesome. He was also talking about * something else, but he couldn't talk about it there because there were * people listening. But, since he's been out of * jail he's actually got a * bed, and his own * shower! A * shower, man!

I'm going to be honest. I couldn't get out of there fast enough!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

New Link

Mary is getting highly frustrated with me at this point! And I can sense that this could go on forever - so I've decided to fully devote myself to this newly discovered cybersport and start up a new blog:

http://www.scambaitersunite.blogspot.com

I'll continue to post information about MaryWelch9@gmail.com & PaulWelch8@gmail.com, and you can continue to follow this story there! I look forward to hearing from you!

Besides, the backstratchers of Belmont and rock fiends are feeling ignored so I've got to get back to the downtown business at hand.

Nigerian Scam Update - This Could Go on Forever

Because of the fact that Mary and Paul are God fearing individuals, they are willing to rent to someone with a criminal record. Bless them! They are willing to turn the other cheek and simply ignore and disregard this fact. Again, bless them!

In fact, Mary and Paul are pretty much willing to ignore anything. They don't even care that I haven't bothered to call them, as instructed. They are simply moving ahead with instructions for payment:

Thanks you for your understanding, we are putting our trust in you and hoping you wont let us down. my husband said thay he will prepar the rental agreement in your name as soon as the he confirms your payment.

The payment will be sent through western union and here is information where you will need to send payment through western union below. His secretary will help him in receiving the money at the Bank.

Receiver's name: Bolade Adejumobi
Receiver's Adress: 101 Isolo Rd.
City: Mushin
State: Lagos
Country: Nigeria
Zip code: 23401

Test Question: who is the greatest
Test Answer: God

As soon as you send the payment from the Western Union Money Transfer,you would be given some informations. You would have to get back to me with following information:

1. Full Sender's Name And Address Including Zip Code:
2. MTCN Confirmation #:
3. Amount Sent:

As soon as i confirm the payment, I will send the necessary document and keys of the apartment to you through DHL and get back to you with the Tracking number and the arrival time of the document and the keys, because the package will be delivered to you the next day.

Thanks and God Bless you.

I want to prolong this a little further - so I choose to continue to play dumb, confused, bewildered:

"Mary,
Thank you for the instructions, that was very helpful as I have never done this before. I just wanted to make sure that the fact that I have a criminal record will not impede my ability to get this apartment!
Before I send the payment, I am a little confused. What is the test question for? Will they ask me this question at Western Union. What if I can't remember the answer? Should I write it down so that I am prepared? But I don't want them to think I am dumb - that would be embarrassing!!!
I just get nervous when I do something new, and this is such a big deal I appreciate all the help you can give me!
Thanks!
Unis"

She wrote back within minutes:

Thanks for the mail, i want you to know that you will include
the text question when sending the payment through western union, so if you know you might forget. you can possible write it down and take it along with you to the western union.
Hope to read from you as soon as you send the deposit.

A few hours later I wrote Mary back:

"I went to Western Union today, but I forgot the test question! Crap - I will try again tomorrow!"

She didn't like that, and told me emphatically, that she really, really, really wants to send me the keys so I need to hurry, hurry, hurry and send them payment! This couldn't be any easier!

But now I've encountered a new problem: Why am I paying Bolade Adejumobi? Is that an acronym or scramble of Paulwelch8@gmail.com? I don't think there is a J or B is Paul's name, yep just checked - no J or B in Paulwelch8@gmail.com, and no 8 in Bolade Adejumobi. I have to ask:

"Mary,

Why am I sending the money to Bolade Adejumobi? Paul Welch is the name of the person who I originally emailed. I will send the money to Paul Welch - not Bolade Adejumobi. What is going on here, I am very confused and nervous. You said this was 100% legit, and backed by the law, but I don't understand why the names are funny! Please explain - I am leaving for Long Beach very soon and I am counting on you to provide me with housing. I am a good person, except for my small criminal record, and we had an agreement! I am trusting in you to be up front and honest with me! Long Beach can be a scary place and I don't want to be homeless!
Please explain why the name of the person I am sending this to is not your husband!

A very discouraged Mrs. Viceroy! "

Monday, August 4, 2008

Lucky Approval: Nigerian Update!

I was approved, lucky me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

At this point, I realized I was using my personal email address, since the original ad duped me; I need to promptly correct this. So I logged into a crappy non existent email, put Amy Unis Viceroy as the contact, and wrote Mary the following:

"I just wanted to let you know I had to change my email address. Please write to me from this email address, and I likewise will only be able to email you from this address. My other email was hacked into and stolen by a very dishonest liar, and I no longer have access to it. I will always be available on this email now."

No mention of my hacked account, only a 2nd copy of the original approval letter as follows:

Thank you very much for your reply, I can see your willingness in thisApartment. I want you to know that i'm satisfied with your profile andalso believe l can trust in you because l would not like to experiencewhat l experienced from my last tenant again.I will like to know theexact date you will like to move into the apartment,l showed yourapplication to my husband and he said he is satisfied with it.l wantyou to know that we can let you stay in my apartment till the periodof time you wish to.I want you to know that the rent fee is among theapartment utilities all included, so you can use them anytime but makeyou take proper care of my property.My husband will be receiving thedeposit payment from you via Western Union ,l wish you best of luck inyour job, from your application l can see that you are responsible anda hard working person ,may the almighty Lord lead you in what ever youwish to do

Accommodation Features...................................................
Wood Floor :
Heater :
Central Heating :
Equiped Kitchen :
Tv:
Cable/Satellite TV:
Video/Stereo:
Internet :
Air Conditioning:
• Full Kitchen
• Refrigerator:
• Garage/Car park
• pets allowed.

Kitchen Features...................... ...........
Washing machine:
Juice Machine :
Iron :
Toaster:
Oven :
Dishwasher :
Coffee Maker :
Microwave :
Refrigerator:Stove:

As soon as the deposit payment has been confirmed by me via Westernunion,l will go ahead and commence on how the apartementkeys/documents will be delivered to you via DHL courier service onnext day delivery and it will be delivered to the address you providedin your application form.Let me hear back from you as soon as possibleso that l can go arrange for the delivery of the keys/Documents. Onceagain l'm giving you this apartment on trust and do not dissapoint mebecause l dont want our flat to be destroyed again, if you wish tomove in with your own properties,we still have one extra room that isempty so you can easily put our own things that you think you dontneed in there.

Here are the contents that will be delivered to you via DHL courier service.
1) Entrance and the rooms Keys
2)Paper/Permanent Flat form(Containing your reference details)
3)The Flat documented file.
4)Payment Receipts.
5)Full address and description of the Apartment.

My husband will like to talk to you,you can call him as soon as youget this Email his number is +2348037243553 Or +2347023264843. Getback to me via email if you will need me to send you the informationwhich you will in sending the deposit payment via western union to myhusband secretary.

Thanks and God bless you...

Best Regards


First off, I'm not going to call this douche bag! But, I did learn that what I'm participating in is actually a cybersport by the name of Scambaiting - you can get tricks, hints, resources, etc. at http://www.419eater.com/. They suggest working it so they call you. Of course, you don't want to give them your real phone number, but there are a number of sites that will provide you with a fake number and route it to your phone! This way, not only are they not going to screw you out of any money, but you can turn the tables, and potentially screw them out of some money.

So, I wrote her back:

"Oh Mary,

I'm so pleased that you got my new email. I was nervous that you wouldn't get my email and that we would lose the house forever! So, I have never sent a payment through Western Union or Money Gram. Can you explain to me what I do?
Oh, I forgot to tell you. I don't want to mislead you, but I do have a criminal background, and I don't know if that will prevent me from getting this apartment. I do really like it, and I don't know where we will live if you deny me, but I wanted to be honest and let you know the truth up front. Please let me know if this will create trouble for me?

Amy"

How long will they keep this up? Lucky for me, I have nothing better to do!

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Nigerian Scammer Mary Welch Update

After I told Mary she was being too pushy, she IM'ed me again. I guess she thought if she waited overnight, I wouldn't feel as though we was being too pushy. So, instead I decided to push her a little bit, and she got a bit "embarrasive".

Mary: hi

Me: I kind of feel like this isn't for real with all the pressure you are putting on me

Mary: what do you mean? you sound embarrasive and doubtful

Embarrasive? Not sure what that means - oh yes, of course, embarrassed! Wouldn't I be embarrassed if I was silly enough to hand over money to someone who I knew was stealing it from me? Do you think I know that you are trying to steal money from me Mary?
me: Yes, I am doubtful. Embarrassed, not so much...

Mary: oh really

me: oh yes (a little mocking here) If you aren't willing to hold it for us, then I understand, but it is a big decision to move across the state, and if you need to give it up to someone else, you go ahead

Mary: everything is 100% legit and backed by the law
Mary: ok just get back to me as soon as you fill out the application thanks

I found her very convincing. I mean if she says it's 100% legit and backed by the law, then why shouldn't I believe her. I'm not sure entirely to which law she is referring to, but by all means, any law must be a good law right?

So, I filled out the application as follows: (And, if you haven't figured it out, all this information is false!)

"Mary,
You really assured me today when we talked, so here is the application.
We found out today he got the job, and we are looking to move in the first of September.

=========== RENT APPLICATION =============

Also,Pls answer these questions below:
1)Your Full Name
Amy Unis Viceroy
2)Present Address(where you reside now) & Phone Number
Trailer Park
3)How old are you
36
4)Are you married
Yep
5)How many people will be living in the apartment
2
6)Do you have a pet
Yes
7)Do you have a car
Yes
8)Occupation
Mechanic
9)What is your religion
J Dub
10)How long are you willing to stay
1 to 2 years
11)1 month Or 2 month deposit needed
I would only like to pay one month deposit"

This is also at which point I decided to turn the tables. Let's she how she reacts if I no longer take this little farce seriously.

Friday, August 1, 2008

And thennnn?... Scammer Update

Up till this point, I haven't told the old man about it. He was busy taking this test, and I knew he would get involved, and I didn't want to distract him - so I decided to wait until it was over.

We were dining at this little dive down the street, and I started filling him in. I didn't want to blurt out it was a scam at the beginning, I was building up to that... you know? I started telling him about this cute little place I found, and our series of conversations, etc. I left out a lot of the really obvious alert signs like the West Africa thing, to keep up the suspense.

When I'm just in the middle of telling him about how they had to move to Maryland, and we have to fill out the application online I see the person at the table over staring at us. When I look over at him, he timidly raises his hand up to his shoulder, "Um, I'm sorry I didn't want to interrupt or eavesdrop - but I just can't let you go through with this!"

"I'm sorry, what?" I ask. My old man looks really confused!

"This is a scam! We had this happen to us, and they just want your money, they don't have a place, they aren't going to send you the keys, and I just couldn't sit here knowing what I know!"

What a great guy! See, it's not just all bums and vagrants! Although I knew this was a scam, what if I didn't? I think that is really stand-up!

So, we decided together to keep this going: Scam the scammer so to speak. In fact if you Google such a phrase, you will be busy for several hours delightfully amused.

When we arrived home, my husband got onto the computer. Marywelch9@gmail.com had something to say:

Mary: hi

me: Howdy!

Mary: have you filled out the rent application form ? so that i can forward a cpoy tomy husband

me: yep

Mary: pleasesend tome ok? are u doing that right now so that i can inform my husband

me: Stop being so pushy!

Mary: ok let me know when you have it done i will like you to mail me when you are done ?

Thursday, July 31, 2008

LAAFR West African/Nigerian Scammer Update!

Hmmmm... Where are we now with our scammer? This place just sounds so good, I can't even believe it! Um, I'm really excited.

So, I wrote Marywelch9@gmail.com back with a few questions:

If you do not live nearby how will this work?
How will we pay rent?
Do you pay the utilities, or will the renter?
What is Hydro?
Are there any additional costs outside of the monthly rent?
Is this a house, or an apartment?
How many square feet is this house/apartment?
Are you looking for a lease, or month to month?
Is the house/apartment furnished, or unfurnished?

I waited for a return email, but did not get one until all of a sudden, MaryWelch9@gmail.com, IM'ed me, as unfortunately, we both use gmail.

Mary Welch: hi
Mary Welch: this is mary

Me: Hello

Mary Welch: how are you doing?

Me: Good, and you? (Phew! I'm glad we took the time for formalities - although you are stealing $6 million dollars a year, at least you have manners!)

Mary Welch: i am fine
Mary Welch: thanks you
Mary Welch: did you get the application for i sent you

Me: I did, thank you - I am just reviewing it with my husband now

Mary Welch: let m eknow if yo are still intrested in the apartment
Mary Welch: because i remove the add because of you
Mary Welch: ok
Mary Welch: get back to me as soon as you fill the application
Mary Welch: thanks

(Well, that explains why I can't find the add! How considerate!)
Me: I still have questions about the place.

Mary Welch: yo can go on

Me: If you are not located in California, how would we get the rent payment to you?

Mary Welch: you wll be amking the apyment to my husband who is the owner of the apartment

Me: Will we send it via regular postal mail?

Mary Welch: You are only paying the first month rent deposit
Mary Welch: so that you can have the keys and documents sent to you via DHL
Mary Welch: as soon as your first month deposit is confirmed by my husband

Me: Okay... and for rent?

Mary Welch: you will only send the first month rent to my husband
Mary Welch: then you will be paying the other month rents to me

Me: Okay... and I'm asking again, do we mail it to you?

Mary Welch: yes
Mary Welch: that is ok
Mary Welch: but you wil have to send the first month rent payment to my husbnad
Mary Welch: through western union or money gram
Mary Welch: ok?


Ok, Marywelch9@gmail.com, I get it. You really, really, really want that deposit. You want that deposit so badly that you don't care about the rent! I'll hurry and get that deposit to you! And fill out the application!

Here is the application:

=========== RENT APPLICATION =============

Also,Pls answer these questions below:


1)Your Full Name__________________________ ____________
2)Present Address(where you reside now) & PhoneNumber________________________ _______
3)How old are you _____________________________
4)Are you married ______________________________ _____
5)How many people will be living in the apartment ___________________________
6)Do you have a pet ______________________________ ___________
7)Do you have a car ______________________________ ____________
8)Occupation ______________________________ ___________________
9)What is your religion ______________________________ ______________
10)How long are you willing to stay ______________________________ ___________
11)1 month Or 2 month deposit needed ______________________________ ________


Looking forward to hear from you with all this details so that i can have it in my file incase of issuing the receipt in your name and contacting you.Await your urgent reply so that we can discuss on how to get the documents and the keys to you,please we are giving you all this based on trust and again i want you to stick to your words,I am putting everything into Gods hand,so please do not let us down in this property of ours and God bless you more as you do this.
Regards.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Los Angeles Apartment for Rent Scammer

So... we are thinking about relocating, and I took a gander at Craigslist in the attempts to find a deal on housing. Since most everyone knows that LA is 98% more expensive to live than anywhere else in the country, I started my search for a good deal there.

One of the first places I found was a little 1 bedroom 1 bath near the beach for $650. The ad simply said:

"Great 1 bedroom apartment for rent. Contact for more details."

Well, you already know what I got myself into, but I was easily deceived by the ad.

I reported the reply as spam and it was therefore deleted from my email history, but basically Paulwelch@gmail.com told me that he was sent to West Africa on a peace keeping mission (which is why they had to leave the house) but that his wife relocated to Maryland and was handling all the details, and to email her for more info at: MaryWelch9@gmail.com

And so it begins.

"Thanks for the email.My husband owns the House, also want you to know that it was due to my husband's transfer that made us to leave the house and also want to give it out for rent and looking for a responsible person that can take good care of the house, we are not after the money for the rent but want it to be clean all the time . You can go ahead and view the house.So for now,I am in Adelphia MD in the United States in our new home and also I am with the keys and documents of the house,we tried to look for an agent that we can give this documents before we left but could not see and we dont want the apartment to be used any how in our absence that is why we took the keys and documents along with us here and as you know that,my husband over in the West Africa for a mission of God,so i hope you will promise us to take very good care of the house.So get back to me on how you could take care of our apartment or perhaps experience you have in renting a home.Hope you are okay with the price per month with hydro,heat laundry facilities,air condition, internet connection and so on.View pics in the attached files.I am looking forward to hearing from you ASAP so that i can forward you an application to fill out and discuss on how to get the house for rent.Thanks"

Please feel free to email her inquiring about her rental properties! If you really want to waste her time and resources, and hopefully lure her away from potential targets play along. Calling them out, or getting upset will only result in no fun for you! Choose your city, I'm sure they have ads posted everywhere, but definitely in Long Beach.

Stay tuned for LAAFRS updates!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Good Samaritan

Anyone that knows me can attest that I am both quite clumsy, and often forgetful. I was walking to the bank (of all places) a few days ago, and I lost my wallet along the way. Between walking two dogs, and crossing multiple streets/overpasses, it's no wonder as it was just stuffed into my pocket. Not the wisest move... I know. But see, if I keep my wallet in my purse I have just as good a chance of leaving my purse somewhere - I know this because I have more times than not left my purse somewhere. I'm not a purse person anyway, I don't like them.

The sad part is I didn't realize that I had lost/misplaced or been been pickpocketed until I reached the bank. Oops. I retraced my steps back home, left the dogs, and retraced my steps back. I leaned over the overpass railing to peer onto the freeway, I searched among the urine stenched bushes on the side of the street, I gave the bums dirty looks that I walked past on my journey.

No luck. I couldn't find it. I cancelled all my cards, but told my husband I had a good feeling about it.

As the days passed I thought if a good samaritan had found it they should mail it back. However, upon further reflected I decided a good samartian would hopefully think otherwise as the address on the drivers license might not be correct! I thought about 20x times over I should check Craigslist Lost and Found - but I never did, don't ask me why.

Today, I got a random message on Facebook. No surprise, creepies everywhere!! I've had my fair share of creepy messages. I'm kinda sick of Facebook and Myspace though. Constant checking to see if new friends have signed up, constant emails about who has done what, and then this new epidemic of people internet snubbing you! I finally decided to cancel all my email subscriptions - no more alerts - I'll check it when I check it! Well, apparently I didn't cancel my Facebook alerts, and like I said, today I got a random message.

Hallelujah!

"My name is Downtown Perks (names changed). I found your wallet on my way to work the other day. It's all in there. I found it on some intersection near 16th and glisan. So if you would like to come pick it up sometime that would be great. my phone number is 505-505-5055."

Thank you!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Skills

When we adopted our first puppy, we were fresh off the bandwagon of Nintendogs and found it quite amusing to teach the little guy all sorts of tricks; even the simple ones like stay, so when the time came to start training the second in command we found ourselves less enticed. This was particularly so when we discovered how easily she copied the first one. "Let him teach her," we pronounced. On the whole, the pack training of two worked well, but there are a few things she hasn't quite mastered. One of those is getting into the plastic spoons. As soon as I throw away the current one she's demolished, she trots over and finds a new one. I should move them, yes.

Today we were working on stay. I was watering the plants out front; she was perched on the front steps where she was told to watch - but stay put! Easy enough, until some hobo walks by and tells her she no longer has to stay. Usually my puppies do what they are told and bark crazily at anyone old, drunk, or unclean. I guess we've now found something else we need to spend time working on.

Once I reach the two of them, and put the puppy back in her place, the hobo says to me, "I can tell they really love you."

"Really? That's nice."

"You know how I can tell?"

"Uh uh."

"It's the look in your eyes..." he follows up with a smile and points to his own eyes fearing that I won't understand.

No, that's just the look of someone who thinks you are a crazy drunk!

Now that he's blathered on about his psychic abilities, he's got a story to tell. "Today, I got a wild squirrel to eat out of my hand for 5 minutes!!"

"That's lucky," I surmised.

"No," he corrected me. "That's 'cuz I got skills."

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Verbal Assult

I haven't gone back to the dirty place since the spare jeans incident... Ew. But, I ventured back today. It was fairly early, 6 a.m. even, and I thought I would take the puppies for a bit while my husband worked his swing shift for four hours.

It's the end of July - but it was 40 degrees. Luckily I wore spandex leggings under my shorts, and I had a sweatshirt and blanket which I rolled up into.

"Sorry to wake you up," an old man grumbled as he walked past me. I looked up. "Say what?" I asked. "Sorry to wake you from your bed," he repeated.

Whoa! I jumped up, "Hey, I'm not sleeping! I'm reading a library book; I have a library card; I work AND live down the street; my husband works a swing shift; he's at work right now; I thought it would be fun to bring the dogs to the park; I tried to insert every possible insinuation that I was, in fact, not homeless into this conversation without stating what I was dying to actually scream, loudly: "I'm really not a homeless bum."

But he wasn't the only one. A little later a couple kids came up, "Heeeeeey, wanna come blow up this watermelon with us?" I'm alright just reading, I assured them. "Coooool, but uh do you care if we do? It's going to be awesome!!" Nope, really, I'm ok. When their melon failed to blow up, they hopped the fence plastered with warning signs and jumped around on the old dilapidated bridge cussing and giggling every time loose boards fell beneath their feet into the river below. Then later, while loudly contemplating how awesome it was that they almost died many different times jumping on the bridge, they attempted to climb up the notches in the pillars of the 100ft. overpass.

Unfortunately, at one point I had to give in and face the repugnant restrooms. As I had nowhere to put the dogs, they had to come with me. When we walked out of the bathroom, a city worker was standing nearby in the parking lot. She looked at me, like I looked at the prostitute and cabbie when they walked out in the spare jeans episode.

I felt dirty.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Freak Me Out

"You came out of nowhere,
Man you really freak me out
I'm so afraid of you
and when I lose my cool
I don't know what to do.
I know you don't mean no harm,
you're just doing your thing,
but man you really freak me out."

You know this Weezer song, Freak Me Out?

This is how I feel every time I walk outside. Every corner, every street, every intersection some fool is standing there with a clipboard asking me to sign up for world peace, or the starving children, or lately the Change Monger.

Get it? The Change Monger vs. the War Monger.

"Do you have 5 minutes for Barack Obama?" he petitions...

"I would rather die first," I reply smiling.

I'm smiling because it's true, and because I'm unapologetic for it.

Tomorrow I will ask the petitioner if they agree with Barack Obama that mothers who are too high on crack, or meth, or heroin, too high to be able to make a decision about their child; a decision whether or not to give life saving treatment to a 3 minute old baby they are too high to even know that they just gave birth to a living being, I'm going to ask them if they agree with Barack Obama that that child should lie in the corner starving, suffocating, and likely bleeding to death.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Crosswalk

There I was - walking on the sidewalk, halfway between 22nd and 21st, approaching the intersection. I was quickly approaching a woman ahead of me who was paused at the crosswalk of an intersection, growing dizzy from watching the cars speed past her.

A crosswalk: An original idea to assist pedestrians. A bar of white stripes painted in the street. That thing that the Beatles walked across on that one famous album cover. That thing that you have to stop for if you are a driver and someone wants to walk across the street.

So she's waiting. Finally, heading south, a Scooter man finally stops. He smiles at her, she smiles at him. She looks north - clear, she looks south - cars still speeding past crazily. She smiles at the Scooter man again. She waves him on, shrugging her shoulders and holding up her hands with an upside down frown, as the cars heading north refuse to stop.

Not only is it the law everywhere that you must stop for a person wishing to cross a street with a crosswalk, but where I live, if a person wants to cross the street - whether there is a crosswalk (lines painted in the street) or not, as a driver, you have to stop no matter what. You have to stop at any intersection if someone wants to cross the street. The pedestrian always has the right of way.

Scooter man smiles back at the lady and refuses to continue. He raises his arm and points in a southern direction. A northern headed vehicle stops - almost as if Scooter man made them, like Xavier from X-men!

Just as she takes her second step into the crosswalk I reach the intersection and I follow suit. As she reaches the other side of the street she veered left; away from the stopped car and towards Scooter man, but I veer right; closer to the mentally coerced stopped vehicle. As soon as I step onto the sidewalk, the vehicle slams on the gas and the passenger shoves his head out of the window and screams at me: "You ARE welcome!"

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

A horse of course!

I have to break from the norm for this post for several reasons:

#1: Let's face it, my friends, I'm just not that committed to drawing stupid stick drawings to supplement my posts. Were it not for the fact that not only do I have to draw the image, but then scan in said image, I might be more up to the task, but alas - I'm not, and so we come full circle.

#2: No stick drawing could/would suffice that reality of what I'm about to share with you - not even if it were sprinkled with magic dust, it just wouldn't be good enough.

#3: And besides, the only Google images anyone ever finds from my posts are regarding cream and midgets which I'm going to mention in the same sentence once again in the hopes of gaining more readership. I'll take you, whether you are a perve or not!

The same movement by the name of The Artistic Liberation Front that is spray painting "Hobo" all over the city sidewalks and lamp posts with blue spray paint and notified me that our local payphone is tapped, has started a new trend.

Yes, this is a plastic horse tied up with twist ties to the old Horse rings that are still scattered throughout the city sidewalks.

My husband wants to know where the plastic cowboys are, but that's easy - obviously the horses wouldn't need to be tied up if their cowboys were with them! The cowboys are off somewhere taking care of business!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Voicemail

I received this hot little number on my voicemail last night at 9:28 pm - and here it is for your reading pleasure verbatim, all ums, oohs and aahhs included:

Hello, my name is Brad Holtz and I'm, I believe I'm speaking with the right person - to pursue, I left a message there it sounds like the right voice, I think your names Valerie, maybe Vivian, but I'm pretty sure Valerie, anyway... I did some work on the steps here, at the town homes, more than about a couple years ago or so here,... (sigh) I lost your number when my phone got stolen from a work truck that I was, uh, working for a non profit up in Seattle, anyway... (sigh) um, for the first time I came by here and it looks like you never had the mortar work redone... um, so I was wondering if I could still get payment for that thing - on the way home that night, you were right I did need lights,... I ended up getting hit by a car head on, just messed up, really, but uh, anyway, so I'm hoping that you will get back to me on this matter, and, um, yeah... the reason that I'm kinda chalking this up is because I overheard you saying that you were going to have someone come back in and redo the stairs, I remember you told me that, whichever the case, it's still holding together - just like I thought it would - anyway, call, obviously - because I'm a little low on the fundage these days, hope you're well, bye now

Monday, July 7, 2008

Authenticity

I love a good crazy, but obviously I don't like posers. Last night at the park, we encountered a poser.

There we were, calmly conversing with a stranger about our dogs when all of a sudden we heard screaming from behind the hill to our south. The stranger commented, "He's been doing that for a while."

I looked over. There was nothing to be seen, and then ever so subtly a black head of hair slowly began crawling over the top of the mound with a smile brimming from ear to ear. His eyes shot furtively around witnessing who was paying attention. When he discovered he had an audience he shot up, held his arms wide, looked directly at me and shouted: "Who has marijuana?"

And also, "Who has a chimichanga?"

He followed his questions with hysterical giggling and then he fell to the ground and rolled back down the hill to join his friend.

This went on for a while, and we ventured to the other side of the park. When the poser lost his audience he decided to do something drastic.

He resumed his pose at the highest point on the small mound, held his arms wide, looked directly at me and began again, to wail while... tearing his shirt apart starting at the neck. The most he succeeded in doing was both exposing his weakness (it took him 4 tries before he got the shirt fully in two) and his flabby gut. It was sad display mocking a mix of Hulk Hogan and the Incredible Hulk but an attempt at that. His similarity to the brute force of either character made your face scrunch up in that upside down frown and think instead that this is what Ratatouille would look like if he were to brave such a front.

Alternatively, this morning I found a prescript detail for Methadone, so in reflection, maybe it was his and he wasn't a poser after all. I can't decide which I think would be better.

Friday, July 4, 2008

God Bless America

Baking in my kitchen, over the noise of my blender (which at 1:00a I'm sure my neighbors didn't appreciate - sorry (not really!)), and the noise of my fan through the window, and any cars which were driving by, and boiling water on the stove, I heard screams and shouts.

Simultaneously rolling my eyes, and straining my ears to hear the commotion, because surely you don't think my annoyance could possibly supersede my curiosity and the possibility of a good story, I distinctly hear the telltale noise of thundering repetition slowly gaining momentum... louder, louder still, and finally: "U S A! U S A! U S A!"

A gaggle of drunk and disorderly boys stomped by my apartment on their way home from the bar! Finally! Something worth causing a raucous over! After a couple rounds of "USA!!" the boys took turns singing, God Bless America all the way down the street.

I was so proud I didn't even care they were tone deaf! Go bums!!! (for once!)

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Fight Club

I happened upon a transient argument today while on my way to the store. It involved two people I will name: Hobo 1, and Hobo 2.

Hobo 1, as far as I can tell initiated the argument by running into, or nearly ran into Hobo 2 with his vehicle, a dilapidated van; a fair reason for Hobo 2 to be upset.

Hobo 2 screams obscenities at Hobo 1 - as I mentioned, probably for good reason. This is when I enter the scene.

Hobo 1 thinks Hobo 2 is a a**hole, while Hobo 2 thinks that Hobo 1 should go to hell.

Hobo 2 thinks that Hobo 1 is drunk, while Hobo 1 thinks that Hobo 2 is drunk and high!

Hobo 1 knows where Hobo 2 lives so... Hobo 2 should be scared, but Hobo 2 knows what Hobo 1 drives and wrote down his license plate number, and make and model of car and is going to call the cops!

A little ways down the street Hobo 2 ran into his friend Hobo 3. Unfortunately, I was on the other side of the street, but I do know that Hobo 3 vehemently agreed with Hobo 2 - that a**holes should not drive drunk and that Hobo 2 should call the cops.

At which point both Hobo 2 and Hobo 3 got a good laugh.

Monday, June 23, 2008

The Doors

As usual, a hobo, was screaming his rants at the top of his lungs in the park the other day.

"This city's got a Morrison St.! We've got a Morrison Bridge! There's a Morrison Park!; but they don't play no Jim Morrison!! What's up with that?"

Friday, June 20, 2008

Free Portraits

Yesterday, we decided to go on a run.

It was a bit difficult however, considering that some blowhard stole my old man's new Nike shoes. So, we decided instead to take a long, brisk walk, and pick up some even newer shoes on the way home.

On our walk we encountered a couple of girls offering "FREE PORTRAITS". Sweet! The artist works at a porn shop on the other side and town, and didn't have anything to do to that day, so she and her friend decided to offer free portraits. Both were artists, but the one doing our picture was "actually good" - according to her friend. The only stipulation was that we had to allow them to take our picture, and a picture of the portrait before she handed it over.

We positioned ourselves on the concrete, with the sun glaring in our eyes, and modeled for the artist. During the 1/2 hour session she spent much of the time paying particular attention to detail, shading, turning the paper this way and comparing her drawing with our reality, as any artist should, to ensure the accuracy of the intended subject.

As I was sitting there, I was very concerned she wouldn't get my eyes right because I had to squint due to the sun. As she didn't have us move, I assumed she knew what she was doing. I thought about our friends as we waited, who got a portrait of themselves on their honeymoon in Canada. It is a pretty awesome rendition, and I've always been jealous that we didn't have a similar beauty of our own.

Now we do:

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Sherlock Holmes

The other day me and my hubby were walking around town, when we happened upon a wandering dog taking care of business on the little patch of grass on the sidewalk.

It's owner was hiding in the hedges in front of the apartment building nearby. She had found a little crack between two hedges, between which she positioned herself, presumably in order to keep an eye on her dog, but pretend to be invisible to other humans.

It wasn't working; we could see her from 2 blocks away. We ignored her.

As we approached, our respective dogs greeted one another. Suddenly from behind us we heard her exclaim, "Boo!" and began giggling uncontrollably!

"Did I scare you? Did I? Did I?"

"You got me," I admitted.

Picture Sherlock Holmes of the female variety and you can imagine what she looked like. She was average height, 40's, detective hat, frock shawl, khaki shirt and button up shirt. I even think she was smoking a pipe.

On our way back home later, we encountered her again sifting through the grass on someones lawn. Sifting, inspecting, smoking, call it what you will, but she was on the ground, her nose in the grass picking up and inspecting each individual shred of grass.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Uri-nation

I'll tell you the perk of living downtown:

When you open your window on a clear, cloudless, beautifully warm evening to both appreciate the weather and allow some fresh air to seep into your home after weeks and months of being shut-in - you are only greeted by the stale stench of hobo urine wafting in from the side of your building that the drunk used as a makeshift toilet because he's either too drunk or too lazy to mozy down to the public toilets installed for the express purpose of providing a place for the hobo to do his business. I guess they reserve those for defecation only.

Happy Fathers Day to everyone with, or without a toilet to piss in!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

School Spirit

I'm walking around downtown the other day sporting my college shirt, not necessarily because I have so much school spirit - I mean the letters are cracking and the sleeves are bleached, but because it fits and it was on the floor near me I decided to wear it.

So, I'm minding my own business, of course, as usual, and a rather large man starting walking towards me. Not towards me in the sense, that he's on the sidewalk walking the opposite direction - but towards me, in front of me; looming...

He's wearing mustard yellow cut-off's - not traditional cut-off's i.e. mid leg, straight edge - but mid thigh, decoratively cut triangle style.

Then, in a high pitch, valley high school girl accent he shouts, "Goood-uh colleeeeeeeeege-uh! Yes!" and pumps his fist into the air.

Not an hour later, a couple of guys starting yelling at me: "Go Vikings!" I just ignore them, for one because I don't encourage hobo's or strangers, and two I don't have school spirit - which they picked up on, because they continued chanting: "Vikings! Vikings! Vikings! What? You don't got no school spirit?"

Then today! I had another large man approach me, and shout in my face (yes, I'm wearing the shirt again, okay...!) "Gooooooo Vikings!"

Friday, May 30, 2008

Favors

So, I was just telling my old man the other day how curious I was at the lack of recent interaction with hobo's has been in terms of them harassing me rudely while I was talking on the phone.

Well, no need to fret any longer.

I took my dogs to the park this week to enjoy the sunshine, and as soon as we entered the leashless area, another dog ran up to greet them. They played for a moment, while a sidelined hobo gave commentary.

"Beebel bum...." he murmured.

What I asked? My first mistake; rule #1: Never engage! I should have known better!

"It's a circus!" he repeated.

I rolled my eyes, and gave that type of smile that's really more like an upside down frown and began walking away. Meanwhile, I'm on the phone. Actually, I'm just on hold but I'm the only one privy to this tiny detail.

He snarks me before I'm too far ahead of him and says, "Can I ask you a favor?"

See, a favor indicates give and take followed up with another give back - but when a hobo is involved it denigrates into simply a give. So what he should have said was, "Can I hit you up for something free?"

I rolled my eyes again, and vocalized my most perturbed annoyed voice, "I'm ON theee phhoneeuh!!!"

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Stop Signs

The Artistic Liberation Front is sweeping through my neighborhood. This is evidenced by the spray paint across the street on the billboard stating: "Artisic Liberation Front" with a small image of a french man.

The liberation has traveled within the surrounding several city blocks in my neighborhood and offered a artistic flair to the local street signs.

(Stop) "eating animals"

(Stop) "buying things"

(Parking) "you are wasting"

(Parking) "breathe deep and no smiling

(Stop) "now is all you have"

(Parking) "when life gives you lemons, you turn that poop gold"

(Parking) "less hippies, more crime"

Friday, May 23, 2008

Grow Up!

When I was a little girl and everyone was telling me, "You can be anything you want when you grow up!" I proclaimed that I wanted to be a butterfly! It never occur ed to me that this wasn't a probable answer to the projected offer.

But now that I'm older and Obama is running for president I'm wondering if maybe I can become that butterfly!

I passed an older woman on the street today. Well dressed, blonde hair, mid 60's with a pink button on her lapel of Obama's face, and red hearts fluttering around him. Obama says, "Vote For Hope!" Is that the hope that we'll have another Cuban Missile Crisis when he meets with world terrorist leaders without preconditions? Or is it hope that I can be a butterfly?

When he says, "They're just words," does that mean I can actually become a butterfly if I hope hard enough!? Or does he mean that I can't become a butterfly because hope is just a word? Or does he have no idea what he's talking about?

Monday, May 19, 2008

Spare jeans

Truly, we must have one of the best park systems in all of the happy United States of America. One of such parks we were visiting yesterday during the sunshiny weather; enjoying the breeze, drinking water, and reading.

Consequently, from all the water drinking I hopped up to visit the convenient restroom located at the entrance to the park. As this restroom was no more than a glorified outhouse I certainly wasn't taking my time when someone tried to open my door - fortunately it was locked. They moved on to the next one.

Not a second later another person came by and tried to open my door. When they found it was locked, they hurriedly tried the next one. When they found that one locked as well, I heard a woman exclaim, "What the *$%#!" much angrier than I would have expected someone to be upon finding a public restroom unavailable. (Maybe she had diarrhea?) A man answered her by asking, "What? Are they locked?" I presume she nodded because he continued, "Try knocking."

A version of that ensued, much closer to what I would describe as loudly banging on the door and I answered annoyed, "Just a minute!" In all I had only been in there a few seconds as it was; wait your turn jeez!

A moment later the restroom next to the one I occupied opened up, and I heard someone rush in. As I mentioned before, being that these restrooms were no more than a glorified outhouse, the person next to me didn't waste any time taking care of business. A different kind of business though; the dirty disgusting sex kind.

If I wasn't hurrying before, you can bet I scurried out of there fast as possible! I ran back to my blanket thoroughly scarred, tainted, horrified, furious, and many more expressive expletives to explain to my husband and get a good look at the mucky filthy tyrants coming out of the bathroom. To my additional horror I saw a family walk just by the bathroom, and a mother and daughter enter the bathroom I had just exited! I gasped and grabbed my mouth in horror.

They too exited immediately.

A few minutes later, the dirty woman exited the bathroom briskly walking back towards the parking lot alone and hopped in the back of a radio taxi cab. Within seconds, the dirty man followed her and took his seat in the drivers seat!!! Dirty cabbie picking up prostitutes on a slow work day!

A few minutes later he popped his trunk, got back out of the car, grabbed his SPARE JEANS from the trunk and proceeded to change his pants in broad daylight. He had on baby blue boxer shorts.

Guess he couldn't go home to the wife with the mark of the devil on spilled allll over his pants!!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Vote No!

I was at the local University yesterday walking around, and I kept seeing yellow post it notes, literally, everywhere.

"Read Twilight," were scribbled upon each and every one.

The revered Twilight. As popular as Obama and yet almost as destructive to every known facet of human culture. This is the very solid reason why I cherish my educaytion so much from this aforementioned University.

While walking to the theater today I saw a poster with a picture of McCain holding up his thumb and the words, "Bomb, bomb, bomb Iran" plastered across his face.

All are true:

Obama, a Brainwashing Cult Leader devoted to admiring himself.
McCain, a Warmonger dedicated to calling every man, woman and child 'my friend'.
Twilight, undeserving of anything more than a sticky note.

What is a girl in this big world to do?

Friday, May 16, 2008

What Purpose?

You may ask yourself, "Why do you continue to give business to McDonalds?"

The answer is simple. While we can justify no longer having an excess $17.99 to pay for Netflix each month for unlimited movies, we can justify $1 every night to pay for a Redbox movie. There are three free advertising commercial plugs that I am not getting a penny for.

WaMu (#4) was giving free lemonade on this ignited summer day, and with my empty paper cup I asked if McDo would fill it up with water!

"Yes, 10 cents please!"

"10 cents? Isn't the 10 cents for the cup?

"Yes..."

"But I have a cup, I just need water in it," I motioned feasibly with my hands.

"Still 10 cents!"

So I hollered at the manager who no doubt remembers me from the time he yelled at me with my dogs, and the time he consequently had to grovel at my feet for telling the owner and McDonalds corporation.

He allowed me to have a tiny sip of water for free... oh the grace of his gesture!

Friday, May 9, 2008

Dog Phobia

A woman ran yelling, streaking from inside Fred Meyer out into the street, "I don't like dogs!"

As is the norm, she was flailing her arms about, repeating her screams, and darting in and around cars.

Well, my dogs didn't like her either.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Hypocrites

Hobo's are the best! Think about it... they don't make no sense, they harass you, sometimes they run towards you, sometimes away from you... and they swear and scream at buildings.

Last week I encountered one screaming and cursing Nordstrom.

"YOU HAVE SHOES! I DON'T HAVE SHOES!"

Personally, I think he could have been more effective had he been standing at the entrance to the shoe floor as opposed to the purses entrance, but apparently he didn't think that aspect through to the finish.

"YOU ARE HYPOCRITES! SELLING YOUR SHOES WHILE I AM OUT HERE WITHOUT ANY SHOES!"

What is funny though, is he had shoes. He wasn't wearing them - this was an aspect he did think through. He set them on a box behind him as he stood screaming and swearing barefoot.

Unfortunately that's all I really got to witness; I was with my mom and she got scared so we couldn't stay long.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Parking Spot

I'm the one that leaves the note on your windshield that tells you what a pathetic job you did of parking your vehicle, and how you can improve your parking skills to allow for one more car to fit parallel on a street which only you thought you had rights to.

I'm not the one who stands on their front porch and ensures that people park correctly.

That lady lives on Irving between 19th and 20th. She stood on her porch today yelling, "You move forward," illustrated by pushing her hands and arms directly in front of her cutting through the air swiftly.

"You move forward!" She shakes her head disapprovingly.

With more force this time, she cuts the air again but this time fans her fingers wide apart to accentuate her prerogative.

By this time the driver was well on his way to getting out of his vehicle clearly satisfied with his parking job. He was still 2 inches distance from the start of the yellow fire marking.

She left the sanctity of her porch to interpret for him.
"You move forward!" and placed her hand this time on top of the hood of the vehicle and cut the air until she reached the point where the yellow curb marking began. "See? You move forward!"

Sunday, April 13, 2008

I'm Begging You

To hear screaming is no rare occurrence outside my window, nor is it rare to hear screaming over the sound of my TV. It is also not rare to hear emphatic screaming, desperate screaming, or sobbing screaming.

Last night I heard distinctly, all of the above:

"I'M BEGGING YOU! I'M BEGGING YOU! NEVER, EVER, ENTER MY LIFE AGAIN."

After a break, she repeated her plea:

"I AM BEGGING YOU!!! (More emphasis this time:) NEVER, NEVER, ENTER MY LIFE AGAIN! PLEASE!"

"PLEASE!"

Distressingly I didn't hear a reply, yet I can't be positively sure there was a reply to be heard. But after the fourth or fifth cry I heard her clattering of footsteps chasing the pavement.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Hobo's Like Cake

I participated in the IRPC's Birthday Cake Bakeoff a few days ago.

My 6 year old digital camera finally broke, and so I don't have a photo, but you can check it out at http://www.evilcakelady.blogspot.com/ it is the two tiered cake with the edible candles all the way down the post.

On my way to the event I passed by several animated characters all salivating and asking if they could have some.

"C'mon! It's a big cake!"

"Ah... I'm so hungry, and that looks so good!"

"But, but... I really love cake!"

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Defensive Tactics

This is an old story, but one about hobo's and downtown nonetheless.

We were pulling in one night, to the parking spot we shared with the dumpsters, to find a common man rifling through our coveted bins.

As if there is a question as to what this hobo is working on, I ask, "What are you doing?"

He probably said something unintelligible like, "uheeisondrr" or stupid like, "Collecting awesome used bottles," but I don't remember because after I told him to leave because this was our parking spot and not his bedroom he said:

"First I have to go the bathroom."

This is the point where I explain that at the time we were driving this complete piece of crap, but at times I miss that little crappy car. There is something to be said for a junker car that you don't have to worry about. But the point being that the trunk in this heap o'trash didn't exactly close in the traditional sense of the word.

As, yes as, he is doing his business he follows up with, "Nice car..." snickering.

I respond, wittily I might add, "Yeah... I'm really concerned about your opinion when you don't even have a 'real' bathroom to use."

That touched a nerve. He started hollering about how I can't talk to him like that and continued his tirade as he skulked, slinking away and as soon as he was safely away from us he shouted out his verbal personal insults to me.

Well, that touched a nerve with my man. He shouted at him, "If you ever talk to my wife like that again I will shove that beer bottle so far up your ass you won't be able to breathe ever again."

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Racist!

I am showing an apartment to a relocation specialist, who is viewing a studio for her client.

She says to me, "The space is not very large... but,... she's from China."

I'm thinking of how to respond, wondering if I'm missing how China and a small studio go together when she follows up with:

So she doesn't need anything very large," she turns to me and smiles, "How much space does she need?"



(And yes! the pictures are back!)

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Breaking Up Contest!

I know at least one other person who wanted to post a break up story, so I am going to stretch the deadline a couple more days, until April 5! But no longer - Judging will begin April 6.

Now... for those of you without a blogger/gmail account, don't fret! You can post no matter who you are! Just click comment!

Remember the prize: a stained spacemountainman t-shirt, a lighter, a book, a used backpack... bascially all the things you would need to attract your own attention from the downtown hobo's!

Now! Start posting!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Hit & Run

While sitting in my parked car downtown, waiting while my husband took care of something quickly, I was hit... twice.

The first time by the person parked in front of me leaving. They got into their vehicle, backed up, hit me and hurriedly pulled forward and left screeching into the street.
LICENSE PLATE # ZUZ 713
LEXUS ES30

Soon thereafter another person pulled into the vacant parking spot, parallel parking his vehicle and hitting me as he was backing in. I waited for him to get out of his vehicle and say something to me, but he must have anticipated an ambush because he remained cowering in his vehicle.

Truly? No damage was done by either vehicle, but I have to say that I was surprised at the lack of admission. I don't doubt that they also figured no damage was caused, but certainly you would think people have the decency to get out and at least ask.

My husband arrived back at the car at this point, and because this car was parked so bloody close to me I had to get out to write down the license plate number:
LICENSE PLATE: #YXT 543
ACURA 3.2 CLS

As I wrote it down, I pointed to it and gestured towards the man in his car. He finally got out of his vehicle and walked over to me.

"Is something wrong?" he asks me.

"Yes, ... you hit my car."

"I barely tapped you," he snided.

"True, but not the point. The point is you hit me, and then sat in your car hoping I wouldn't say anything," I retorted.

"I didn't realize you were in the car, I was talking on my cell phone."

"You were on your cell phone while parallel parking???"

"Uh...."

"No wonder you hit me!"

"I only barely tapped you."

"And like I said, while that is true you still didn't have the decency to say anything. Don't worry though, I got your license plate number, and make and model of your car." He looked quite scared.

I didn't have any intention of doing anything with it, but I figured to send him for a ride nonetheless.

"I'm really sorry," he pleaded.

"Well, ... if I may offer a suggestion. Next time don't cower in your car like a punk!" and I rolled up the window and we left.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Tomorrow is Easter

A bum, of course, is standing in the doorway of Fred Meyer pestering a Security Guard with his postulations as I was leaving today. He is literally standing in front of the door, taking up one half of the entrance. Anyone wanting to come or go at the same time as anyone else, must wait because he, like most everyone else, is busy busy busy worrying about himself.

Because he's standing in the doorway I have to wait for someone to enter before I can exit, and I overhear a portion of his soliloquy.

"I don't understand what's so cool about some guy getting nailed to a cross."

I need a minute to process this.

Now do you understand why I hate hobo's?

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Vendetta

So, we decided to see a movie the other night.

We haven't enjoyed our evening for a full 5 minutes before some fool walks in blabbing on his cell at a decibel level only the very adept at hearing animals in world, outside, 4 flights down can hear. What was he blabbing about? He was busy informing everyone that his favorite adjective, noun, subject, adverb and proposition is the F-word. He used the word in every possible context. He then followed up notification with an exposition of the stupidity of the movie being advertised on the before the actual show.

You know, I just want to see the story on the massive screen. I didn't come for the company of complete strangers. I didn't come on opening night because I anticipated that inevitably some idiot would ruin the viewing experience by running his mouth the entire film with a mirage of inappropriate comments that no one appreciates, especially, the people accompanying him - at least, that idiot hasn't failed me yet. I don't want to be subject to the painful monotony of your inept vocabulary.

So, this time I turn around and I say, "I appreciate (that you think you sound smart when you repeat the same word over and over and over again) that you use that type of language, but could you not be so loud?"

I can't remember a movie I've been to where I haven't told someone to shut up at some point, for some reason, and usually they just shut up or throw popcorn at me or whatever, but this alien... his eyes grew into his forehead. Immediately his face flushed an incredible fuchsia, and his knuckles turned white as he clutched his arm rests. This dude was seriously creepy.

I left for the bathroom, so unfortunately I cant tell you firsthand what happened next, but apparently this guys friend shows up, and our little creep head grows a chubby. No doubt purposefully, he starts recounting the story to his pathetic 4'8" mealy mustached friend, and they tell my husband 3x, "We are going to follow you out of this theatre, and beat the shit out of you." "Remember, we are going to follow you out of this theatre and beat the shit out of you!" "Don't forget we are going to follow you out and beat the shit out of you!" My husband came out to find me and of course we got our money back, and then we called the cops.

They hauled him out the theatre and handcuffed him.

Later, one of the side show policemen informs me, "Everyone has a right to free speech."

No way, really?

"You're in downtown Portland, people are going to say "bad words"." Highlighting bad words with finger quotes as he spoke."

Is that what this is about, bad words?

"This is downtown, 2 or 3 people get stabbed everyday down here."

So, point of the story: It's no big deal if I'm the person stabbed! By the way, my part of town, between the first of the year and the end of February there were only 22 shootings.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Breaking Up

So, while it's never easy to end a relationship - I've never quite heard it put this way before.

While walking to work I overheard a girl on her cell phone screaming, "So, are we together or not?"
Pause.
"Fine, then it's over!"
Pause.
"Okay."

This has prompted my curiosity to hold a contest. Post your breakup stories as comments to this blog by March 31; this gives you two and a half weeks to enter. Everyone will vote for their favorite by way of polling once the contest ends; I will add a poll to my blog, that's how it works.
The most unusual breakup story will win.... wait for it.... well, let's not get ahead of ourselves. Once I get my first comment/breakup story I will unveil what the prize will be!
Happy sweeps!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

EavesDroppings

I started listening in on this story today when I heard overheard a woman say, "You know what evacuation means right?"

She was talking to a young man, who I would guess was black/african american/dark european (no one take offense), and in no way, and at no point illustrated that he didn't speak or understand the english language.

She was white, early elderly age, dark large 80's style glasses with greasy blonde hair pulled back into a tiny ponytail, then jerked back out towards the front until it settled as if she got mad at her hair and wanted to punish it for being naughty.

Her story continued about the 60's storm at the coast. "I could see the eyes of the children,... and,... my own! I could see my own eyes,... and all those eyes were scared!"

She proceeded to talk about how everyone in the city had to move to higher ground. "Do you know what that means? Everyone had to go up into the hills, up h - i - g - h."

At this point I realized the young man didn't know her, and he didn't want to be part of this conversation, and he was looking for a way out.

"You know what they called this? This storm that is going down in the history books? Costal,... Thunderstorm,... Gale,...."

The young man walked away at this point. He just simply said bye, lifted up his right hand halfway and shrugged.

She didn't even notice.

"One thing I learned, never put freezing hands in hot water! Never! Big mistake, big mistake!"