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People Cheer “Arrests” but there is a lot more to know before we know anything

HPD: 74 arrests made in Chinatown in last 6 weeks under crime prevention program https://www.newsbreakapp.com/n/0bqKw7wQ?&share_destination_id=MTU5ODM3MDA2LTE2MzE0Nzg3MDcwMzI=&s=a99&pd=0AoeuE7z&hl=en_US

Downtown Honolulu’s Chinatown is in the midst of a much touted police “crackdown”

I have told you that downtown Honolulu has been one of Oahu’s epicenters for drugs. Years ago I walked those streets in the sincere belief that I could partake in the offtrack lifestyle and no one would be the wiser bc of my good taste in clothes. I am not bragging when I say I was the best looking homeless crack addict on the block in my youth. Please, hold your applause. I have shared with you that I enjoyed my experiences bc the drugs and the risks I took to obtain them were all consuming. Self pity was in the back burner and my orphan status did not cause me to stand out from my peers bc most were alienated from their families. None of this psychological relief would have been possible without a centralized location for all of the elements of this lifestyle. This is the reasoning of an adolescent. The community does not want to be sacrificed at the altar of my self worship. It really is for the best to get the crime off the street and force people to do what normal people do–pursue their behavioral deviations from the accepted norm behind closed doors. No one gets influenced to follow the examples of people smoking crack, ice, or heroin in public. People were once deeply disturbed by such displays, which were absolutely commonplace during 1990’s. These people can relax and focus on something other than cleaning up the streets–like promoting small business.

I understand why people Cheer Arrests, but my insider’s knowledge of “the system” causes me to worry

Yes, let us get the crime off the street. But we actually do need to consider where it goes. I have heard,”they don’t care where you go as long as you get up out of here.” People discover they need to see the follow through for the much touted arrests. According to the linked article lots of homeless have been arrested. Those are likely to be petty misdemeanor arrests meant to convey that the homeless will have a rough go of it in this hostile place. Loitering, littering, jaywalking, camping, lying on the sidewalk. When Rudolph Giuliani was mayor of NYC these nuisance crimes were aggressively pursued with the (reported) results that the little crimes were committed by big time criminals. Felons were rooted out, the community was safer. Yadda yadda yadda…

I do not know if that was true in NYC but in Honolulu nuisance crimes are committed by people who are more nuisances than criminals. They get arrested and released in the morning in a repetitious cycle that churns a lot of paperwork. It is a good thing there is a lot of paperwork to give the Honolulu Police Department work to justify all the COVID relief money they paid their members as excessive overtime. Some would call it fraud. Is this “crackdown” as nothing but a chance to say to the community:

Don’t think HPD is just lavishly spending relief money on all terrain vehicles officers ride on the sidewalk during their unjustifiable overtime. HPD is lavishly spending and making arrests that tax payers find comforting.

The author’s cynical interpretation of the big crime fighting initiative

Maybe I am wrong about the need for real change

As long as the public thinks it’s safety has improved that’s what really matters. No matter what anyone does, the interpretation of the actions is how people experience them. Did you read the linked article about how River Street is totally clear. It was home to mainly alcoholics for over 20 years. The street really looks different, that is true. Did the homeless go “away?” Yes, if “away” means a block toward Diamond Head. Now they bed down by Maunakea Marketplace, on Hotel Street. The only traffic on Hotel Street is the bus. The drivers who see River Street will be impressed by the enormous change –in that spot.

I almost forgot! I did notice a change in the homeless population due to this police initiative. There are more people wearng a jumpsuit made out of sturdy paper-like material. If a person is arrested without appropriate attire the officers in cellblock give him or her a paper suit. People with nothing stay in the paper suit days after their arrest because their belongings are often disposed of by the arresting officers. Yes, there is a new fashion by Maunakea Market. That’s what arrests profit society members who ask no questions about the criminal justice system if it does not touch them personally.

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Links to my blog, Honolulu Homeless news, paradigm shift

Incomplete story about downtown Honolulu Homeless:

Oahu’s Homeless On the Move https://www.newsbreakapp.com/n/0bl7FHE7?share_id=eyJ1c2VyaWQiOjE1OTgzNzAwNiwiZG9jX2lkIjoiMGJsN0ZIRTciLCJ0aW1lc3RhbXAiOjE2MzA3MTcxMjQzMjN9&s=a99&pd=0AoeuE7z&hl=en_US

One person can ruin things for everyone. That is most true regarding what people know about the homeless. I know a few people who stayed outside on River Street. One person might leave a mess but here is something people do not know. The reason people can stay in front of the same businesses, for years sometimes, is bc they guard the place. There are people who have verbal agreements to take care, and they do. Almost everyone I have seen makes it a point to clean up. They know what will happen if they do not. So do not blame homeless people with addictions for creating the public nuisance problems. By and large it is not them.

Now and then I make it a point to check on a lady who is much kinder than I am. Her life is far more difficult but her attitude is better and she does not at all have my misanthropic tendencies. Just bc you live inside does not mean you are happier or more together than everyone who is homeless. When I find myself getting too bitter, as is my habit, I seek out this more balanced person. I’m especially sensitive to racism and misogyny. What others overlook infuriates me. I know, I know, I’m working on it. This woman who feels comfortable with outcasts like me, she helps.

This is the kind of balance I would like to see in the news. I don’t think the news is fake. It is incomplete. There’s a way to say only the truth to create a false impression. Emphasis and omission are journalistic tools that allow them to feel they are reporting the news and not editorializing. I change my mind. I guess the news is fake but not bc they lie. My goal in this blog is to bring not only humanity to the outcasts but to show the gifts within a population people do not see as fully human.

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Who pays for sex–sad sacks or sickos? Neither and both

Preconceived notions about clientele. https://wp.me/p8wemN-aF

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Addiction and Prostitution downtown Honolulu Secret sex Street life

A real text message from an exhausted player on Honolulu’s streets

I wondered what had happened to the woman mi had planned to interview

I walked back to town from St. Francis Hospital all the way up Liliha Street. I didn’t forget we were supposed to meet. I wanted to see who was around and I still had stuff I bought with me. I ended up going with some guy but it’s harder to find a spot in the day so we had to go to a parking garage with no cameras or security. It took so long to get there in all the trafficI figured he must have money but he did not have much.

Then he was rushing me to get out bc he has lots of family who know his truck and I get all flustered when I’m rushed. Left the clothes I bought in the guy’s car so I pretty much worked for almost nothing when you subtract the price of the clothes from what he gave me. Walked aaallll the way back in the heat. To my surprise he was waiting for me on Kukui Street but Safeway where he picked me up. He was there to give me my stuff. Im glad I did not rob him after all. BC I was totally beating myself up as I walked back to town.  I should have grabbed something out of the back seat. That’s what I was thinking walking on the freeway overpass by School Street. I guess It is good i didn’t. Then again he was obviously lying about not being able to go back to where we met. He just didn’t have any more use for me I don’t owe him for bringing back my stuff NC it is his fault I left it. We are even. I don’t care what he said about next time. Sorry I missed you. You know how it is.

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A Potentially Traumatic Sexual Encounter I Reinterpreted as Funny

Nothing is either good or bad but thinking makes it so

Shakespeare

Don’t Feel!

When you are turning tricks the main objective is not to feel anything, to not be there at all, mentally. Sometimes I could do this but not always. There were times when I needed to be present to pay attention to someone who was trying to sneakily pin my wrists, for example. I learned how to hold my hips in such a way that the guy couldn’t really hurt me if he tried. This kind of hard won wisdom only comes with experience. Experience only comes from the necessity of addiction. But I did not want to analyze because nothing puts a damper on disassociation like self analysis. Instead of evaluating why I was at risk for being hurt and how to avoid this outcome altogether I came up with a plan.

Do You Know Ambesol?

Ambesol is the topical anesthetic you put on your gums to numb tooth pain. It does nothing to solve the problem but for a short period of time you don’t feel any pain. It is like novocaine, but you apply it instead of having it injected. Plus you can buy it over the counter. What if I applied ambesol to my body? Then I wouldn’t feel anything! What a brilliant idea! I berated myself for not coming up with the stroke of genius earlier.

The Problem

I failed to consider the solution from all angles. Addiction heightens a person’s self-centeredness, almost making a person child like. Naturally I only thought of my own perspective. It did not occur to me that if I was numb then anyone who touched the ambesol on me would be numb also. Moreover, I didn’t remember the obvious medicinal, kind of menthol, smell of the product.

I had a date, the person who had inspired my ambesol idea. One of those guys who dated all of the women downtown and thrived on gossip from each of us. He was also one of the people who insisted that I talk and share my political views because he found my intelligence ironic and amusing. Since I was young, in my 20’s, I did not know how to set boundaries. I thought if I had said “yes” in general, then that permission applied to whatever he wanted. I would wise up and become the self-assertive, “difficult” person I am today, but back then, all I had was ambesol.

During the date, the guy backed off and said, “I can’t do this. Something is wrong.” He was completely puzzled about his inability to perform and would never have suspected what I had done.

I feigned ignorance. “Everything seems the same to me.”

“Do you smell that? It’s like some kind of mouthwash.”

“No, I can’t say that I do,” I said, sniffing for exaggerated effect.

“Did you put on some kind of perfume or lotion?” he asked, closing in on the problem but never being able to pinpoint it exactly.

I denied, denied, denied. He insisted on taking me back. I returned his money in a huff. Totally insulted. Actually I was mad that I had to start from scratch and was returning back downtown from his place still without money. The anger was real, the reason was fake.

It did not take me very long to see the whole situation as funny. I told the story to peers who could appreciate that kind of off color humor. Believe me, not everyone gets it, or wants to. I did not consider trying to reestablish myself as a person who could not relate. In a way it was kind of nice to have something in common with other people. I guess a lifetime of rejection can really skew a person’s notions of acceptance.

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A Raging Addiction and No Job? How I managed Daily Drug Use Part I

I Managed Homelessness in Honolulu Indoors

When I first started using drugs I was young and beautiful. Not to everyone of course, but to enough people that I could get some mileage out of my looks. If I had known that youth would not last forever and that I was never going to be as good looking as I was then, I would have tried to marry well. But I didn’t know which is why youth is wasted on the young. I used my looks to get the attention of other drug addicts who had apartments. Usually they were disabled guys who lived in some form of subsidized housing. Guys who were addicts and had nice places to live were in the process of losing their homes as their addictions progressed, unbeknownst to them. These guys were still trying to kid themselves by going to work from time to time. trying not to hang out with other addicts every single day, ultimately pointless efforts. Low income guys had stabilized in their apartments. The rent was often handled by a payee so they couldn’t blow all their money on drugs. The rest of their checks went up in smoke within a day or to after Social Security disability paid them for whatever ailed them. The rest of the month they exchanged access to their place for dope. I caught their eyes, but pretty wasn’t enough. I had to come up with the drugs to trade. In the year 2000, thereabouts, a working girl could get a date in under a minute 24/7, the only slow day being Superbowl Sunday. My pattern: leave whatever apartment I had stayed in until the drugs ran out