Tuesday, June 19, 2007

The Death of Father Carr

I saw the headline about Fr. Carr in the Northwestern Monday morning. Through the first cup of coffee and long before the morning cobwebs disappeared from my head I knew I had a job to do. I had all day at work to think about it and develop a level even attitude regarding it.

I went to the evening meal at the Salvation Army Monday from 4:30 to 5:30. I posed a general question: "What's your thoughts on Father Carr?"

The first person I saw was Bones. He had heard nothing about it. I told him the headline. Bones sez: "You're s%*##in' me." Later. "This is the happiest day I've had in a long time."

Zbobzap sez: "I don't dare use the words I want, (since we're in the Salvation Army Building), but you can guess." Later. "He's going to get pretty hot where he's going."

Female, about age 40: "I could care less. He was nasty to everyone."

Another woman: "I've never heard anyone say a good word about him. Good riddance."

Middle aged man: "I was out there for lunch Sunday with J__. Neither of us were even told Father Carr passed away!" "Typical. Clients are NEVER told anything."

That was the general demeaner of about three dozen comments I received.

I did the same on Tuesday evening. The nicest comment received was from a woman named S__. She said: "It's sad when someone dies, but maybe it's for the better. Maybe things will be run better out there now."

My comment: Father Carr was vicious. He delighted in kicking people who were down. A person would have to speak to thousands of former clients or would be clients to come up with any other answer.

Someone else can write the accolades. I invite any writer (or would be writer) for the Northwestern to stop by the Salvation Army at the noon meal (11am-12:30pm) or evening meal (4:30-5:30pm) and pose questions about Father Carr. Note that citizens of Oshkosh are more than welcome to walk in and inspect the Salvation Army during the public meal times. A small red kettle is usually present and folks are more than welcome to have a bite and chat with people who use the Army facilities.

I implore anyone who is curious about the subject of Father Carr to take time to ask former clients about him.

Next: A public challenge to the Board and Transition Members of the Place 2B.


Thursday, June 07, 2007

Butt Hunting in the City on the Water

But first...A way to make the poor homeless!

Dave Zweifel talked about it in The Capital Times on May 30. It goes like this. An elderly or disabled person has direct deposit for their Social Security check. They also have an unpaid bill which they find impossible to pay. (Note that government checks cannot be garnisheed. It's the law.) The creditor seizes the bank account on the 1st of the month.

The retired or disabled person writes their rent and utilities check which bounce when they reach the bank.

Quite a loophole there and it continues to happen.

Isn't life great in Amerika?

You can read the whole story here: www.madison.com/tct/opinion/138565.

Now for the Butt Hunting business...

Butt Hunting has far surpassed Dumpster Diving in my opinion. Some people strip the remaining tobacco and smoke it in a pipe or re-roll it. Others smoke the butt. Some do both. Unsanitary? Yes. Uncommon? No.

Aaaahh. The power of addiction. Some have their favorite ashtrays which they guard during the day. Others have a regular daily route.

As a group the Butt Hunters bemoan the fact that ashtrays have changed. With the new cone design ashtrays the butt disappears who knows where. Butt Hunters are incensed every time another public ashtray changes to this design.

Workforce Development on Algoma put one in and it didn't last very long. It was a plastic affair and some irate Butt Hunter ripped the top off. They are back to using a galvanized pail.

UWO Polk Library installed them and more than one Butt Hunter expressed their distaste about those to me.

Now even the gendarmes are involved.

An elderly man was wandering about the downtown vicinity the other evening after the rains loooking for some dry tobacco. He was on the grounds of a government housing unit, sat down at a picnic table and began picking through the butts for the longest ones. A woman from the housing unit dialed 911 and waited. The gendarmes appeared a few minutes after 9pm. They gently talked to the man and explained to him that since he didn't live there he shouldn't really be on the property. He agreed. He already had what he wanted and got up and left. The police remained at the scene for over another hour and left at 10:14pm.

The police weren't writing reports. They did the park-in-opposite-directions bit so they could talk non-business. They both had their motors running the entire time.


Friday, June 01, 2007

Summer's Here

The June edition of the Greatest Gallery Walk in the Valley is Saturday night from 6-9pm. Their website continues to improve and can be found in the link list on this page. Be there! A good time is had by all and it's cheaper than driving anywhere.

Tony Palmeri wrote a piece on activism for the Scene Magazine and it is posted here. Doug Boone was the subject. The only item I can add is Doug was missed this week at Waterfest. To my knowledge Doug never missed the Waterfest Concert Series. He was a walking encyclopedia of Waterfest trivia going back to the early years.

Speaking of the Valley Scene Magazine, what happened to their website? Anyone have a clue?

I am looking for someone to post restaurant reviews at this site. Oshkosh needs restaurant reviews. The Northwestern does not do them. This is a void that can be filled by the blogosphere. Write about your favorite or your worst restaurant experience and send it to me at garyfromoshkosh@hotmail.com.

I was invited for pizza at Ratch & Deb's the other evening. Cheese and Sausage. It was great! A friendly neighborhood place that I'd go back to anytime. They are located at the corner of Bowen and Merritt. Parking? Forget it. Ride your bicycle. You probably need the exercise. Oh yes. A big thank you to M.M.'s mother for picking up the tab.

Tony Palmeri was asked by Accordian Man to come to the monthly tenants meeting at Mainview Apartments. Mainview is part of the Oshkosh Housing Authority. Tony said that he would make it if he got done grading his students, and Accordian Man was pleasantly surprised to see him. Thanks for doing that Tony. Accordian Man is happy and I bet that the Housing Authority is surprised that a city council member stopped by. Also...Accordian Man has now been 'outed', at least in the partial sense. Tony knows who he is.