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Bridges & Brigades - The Homeless

A Facebook-invite pops up and nearly drowns in the mindless hailstorm of notifications. It informs me about something I know I deep down care about but haven't been able to establish a…. what do you do with these invites other than think: ”later for sure”. I convince myself I absolutely care, this is something I one day will make more time for. One day… I will spend the time supporting the homeless in more than just empathically care for them in private.

For LA residents there’s no secret that the widespread homeless population subconsciously becomes blocked out of our periphery. The rapidly growing and hurting population that is. 

The homeless population aren’t specified to a covert part of the city or where vampires roam the night. Skid row is shrinking geographically, but increasing in numbers by the day.

Los Angeles continues to grow and change as a city. Since 2005 more than 15,000 thousand high-end condos, apartments, and lofts have been built in the downtown area alone in an effort to clean up its image, and its streets. In the same time period around 900 affordable single housing units were made. 

 

Big MamaBig Mama

 

For years Angelinos have desperately been expressing their frustration and sorrow for the growing homelessness situation and the fact that this isn't a trivial Skid Row isolated or brushed of state of LA.

It officially needs to be declared a state of emergency.

But what does that even mean? Why would a small area of downtown Los Angeles be granted the alarming label of “State of Emergency”. Aren’t those for moments like Hurricane Katrina, Mass Shootings, and California wild fires? Has the situation really gotten to the point where it is of national danger, and what constitutional procedures would be suspended to reinstate regular order?

 

 

 

To explain the situation further we have to dig into the history books.

Believe it or not, the name Skid Row originates from the logging culture 1,000 miles north of Los Angeles all the way up in the Pacific North West. 

Daily transports of logs smothered in greased skids created the expression where groups of people would wait at the bottom of the hill for transport back up to the top. The working population were considered to “live on the skids”. Naturally later, the term was applied to places where people would gather that had scarce sources of income, or simply nothing to do. It would come to define specific parts of cities in depression and poverty. 

LA’s Skid Row received its name at the end of the 19th century where a number of residential hotels opened up and became home to a transient population of seasonal workers. At the end of the 1930’s Skid Row hosted over 10,000 alcoholics, homeless, and other unfortunates that were deemed to live on edge of society. The area comes with history, a history that has supported saloons, social services, and long-term residential hotels. If you walk down Los Angeles Street today you can still stay at one of these hotels. Hotel Baltimore, opened its doors in 1910 and hasn't shut down since. With a deteriorated facade and who-knows-what has to offer on the inside it still hosts long-term residency for its guests.

 

 

 

I'm foolish and I'm funny and I'm needy. Am I needy? Are you sure I'm not needy? 'Cause I feel needy sometimes. That coat costs more than your house! Look, you are playing adults…with fully formed libidos, not 2 young men playing grab-ass in the shower. You go buy a tape recorder and record yourself for a whole day. I think you'll be surprised at some of your phrasing. Friend of mine from college. He also has a boat tho not called the Seaward.

I'm foolish and I'm funny and I'm needy. Am I needy? Are you sure I'm not needy? 'Cause I feel needy sometimes. That coat costs more than your house! Look, you are playing adults…with fully formed libidos, not 2 young men playing grab-ass in the shower. You go buy a tape recorder and record yourself for a whole day. I think you'll be surprised at some of your phrasing. Friend of mine from college. He also has a boat tho not called the Seaward.

 

 

I'm foolish and I'm funny and I'm needy. Am I needy? Are you sure I'm not needy? 'Cause I feel needy sometimes. That coat costs more than your house! Look, you are playing adults…with fully formed libidos, not 2 young men playing grab-ass in the shower. You go buy a tape recorder and record yourself for a whole day. I think you'll be surprised at some of your phrasing. Friend of mine from college. He also has a boat tho not called the Seaward.

I'm foolish and I'm funny and I'm needy. Am I needy? Are you sure I'm not needy? 'Cause I feel needy sometimes. That coat costs more than your house! Look, you are playing adults…with fully formed libidos, not 2 young men playing grab-ass in the shower. You go buy a tape recorder and record yourself for a whole day. I think you'll be surprised at some of your phrasing. Friend of mine from college. He also has a boat tho not called the Seaward.

 

 

I'm foolish and I'm funny and I'm needy. Am I needy? Are you sure I'm not needy? 'Cause I feel needy sometimes. That coat costs more than your house! Look, you are playing adults…with fully formed libidos, not 2 young men playing grab-ass in the shower. You go buy a tape recorder and record yourself for a whole day. I think you'll be surprised at some of your phrasing. Friend of mine from college. He also has a boat tho not called the Seaward.

I'm foolish and I'm funny and I'm needy. Am I needy? Are you sure I'm not needy? 'Cause I feel needy sometimes. That coat costs more than your house! Look, you are playing adults…with fully formed libidos, not 2 young men playing grab-ass in the shower. You go buy a tape recorder and record yourself for a whole day. I think you'll be surprised at some of your phrasing. Friend of mine from college. He also has a boat tho not called the Seaward.

 

 

I'm foolish and I'm funny and I'm needy. Am I needy? Are you sure I'm not needy? 'Cause I feel needy sometimes. That coat costs more than your house! Look, you are playing adults…with fully formed libidos, not 2 young men playing grab-ass in the shower. You go buy a tape recorder and record yourself for a whole day. I think you'll be surprised at some of your phrasing. Friend of mine from college. He also has a boat tho not called the Seaward.

I'm foolish and I'm funny and I'm needy. Am I needy? Are you sure I'm not needy? 'Cause I feel needy sometimes. That coat costs more than your house! Look, you are playing adults…with fully formed libidos, not 2 young men playing grab-ass in the shower. You go buy a tape recorder and record yourself for a whole day. I think you'll be surprised at some of your phrasing. Friend of mine from college. He also has a boat tho not called the Seaward.

 

 

I'm foolish and I'm funny and I'm needy. Am I needy? Are you sure I'm not needy? 'Cause I feel needy sometimes. That coat costs more than your house! Look, you are playing adults…with fully formed libidos, not 2 young men playing grab-ass in the shower. You go buy a tape recorder and record yourself for a whole day. I think you'll be surprised at some of your phrasing. Friend of mine from college. He also has a boat tho not called the Seaward.

I'm foolish and I'm funny and I'm needy. Am I needy? Are you sure I'm not needy? 'Cause I feel needy sometimes. That coat costs more than your house! Look, you are playing adults…with fully formed libidos, not 2 young men playing grab-ass in the shower. You go buy a tape recorder and record yourself for a whole day. I think you'll be surprised at some of your phrasing. Friend of mine from college. He also has a boat tho not called the Seaward.

 

 

I'm foolish and I'm funny and I'm needy. Am I needy? Are you sure I'm not needy? 'Cause I feel needy sometimes. That coat costs more than your house! Look, you are playing adults…with fully formed libidos, not 2 young men playing grab-ass in the shower. You go buy a tape recorder and record yourself for a whole day. I think you'll be surprised at some of your phrasing. Friend of mine from college. He also has a boat tho not called the Seaward.

I'm foolish and I'm funny and I'm needy. Am I needy? Are you sure I'm not needy? 'Cause I feel needy sometimes. That coat costs more than your house! Look, you are playing adults…with fully formed libidos, not 2 young men playing grab-ass in the shower. You go buy a tape recorder and record yourself for a whole day. I think you'll be surprised at some of your phrasing. Friend of mine from college. He also has a boat tho not called the Seaward.

 

 

I'm foolish and I'm funny and I'm needy. Am I needy? Are you sure I'm not needy? 'Cause I feel needy sometimes. That coat costs more than your house! Look, you are playing adults…with fully formed libidos, not 2 young men playing grab-ass in the shower. You go buy a tape recorder and record yourself for a whole day. I think you'll be surprised at some of your phrasing. Friend of mine from college. He also has a boat tho not called the Seaward.

I'm foolish and I'm funny and I'm needy. Am I needy? Are you sure I'm not needy? 'Cause I feel needy sometimes. That coat costs more than your house! Look, you are playing adults…with fully formed libidos, not 2 young men playing grab-ass in the shower. You go buy a tape recorder and record yourself for a whole day. I think you'll be surprised at some of your phrasing. Friend of mine from college. He also has a boat tho not called the Seaward.