The newspaper finally figured out that surly squatters who were finally booted from the Kakaako parks they wrecked for so long have now ensconced themselves around nearby Mother Waldron Park and nobody seems to know what to do about it.
That’s the long and short of a meandering mess that provides brief glimpses into the lives of a few squatters, local workers who have to hose down their turds, and the yuppifying neighborhood.
Meanwhile, painfully obvious questions go unasked, so we learn virtually nothing of real value.
We do learn that longtime Kakaako sidewalk and park habitue Totoa Totoa Jr. and his family are among the throng that routinely rotates from Mother Waldron Park to the sidewalk across Cooke Street.
Astute readers will recall that Mr. Totoa’s teenage son and a cousin were arrested a couple years ago after allegedly participating in a rat-pack beat-down of a doofy state legislator who was photographing their illegal encampment near the Children’s Discovery Center.
We learn that the young Totoa had a son of his own following his arrest, making a total of two grandsons for the older Totoa.
Unfortunately, we don’t learn anything about what resulted from the arrests; whether the alleged perpetrators are among those now living around the park or elsewhere on the streets; whether the infant grandsons are among the squatters; or what the older Totoa hopes to do about his predicament, if anything.
We’re informed that Mr. Totoa said “We did the shelter,” as he broke down his encampment with a large knife and began to walk everything back into Mother Waldron Park.
And that’s the end of it. Presumably, the shelter experience didn’t work out, but we have no idea why, or what the hell “we did the shelter” is even supposed to mean.
There are two shelters nearby, and one of them, the huge Next Step Shelter, is briefly mentioned in passing.
But it seems that nobody thought to ask whether any beds are currently available in that shelter; why the squatters around Mother Waldron Park won’t go there or another shelter; or any other pertinent questions that might provide some insight.
A city official provides the usual canned statement about conducting regular enforcement against violations of the sidewalk nuisance ordinance and another law that’s supposed to prohibit people from stacking up piles of dumpster-derived crap on public property. (Violations may be reported by calling 768-4381).
Nobody bothered to ask the state homeless honcho or anybody else whether they’re conducting outreach or doing anything else to gently dissuade the squatters from pursuing this lifestyle choice.
But we do learn that the fancy new Down to Earth Organic & Natural store that recently moved into the neighborhood to cater to the diet-conscious yuppies (and the well-heeled tourists filling new apartments illegally converted to short-term vacation rentals) is conducting an outreach program to instruct the piss-bum community about gourmet cooking with cans of beans and other wholesome ingredients that Down to Earth hopes to sell them, and which can be conveniently purchased with EBT cards (Electronic Benefit Transfer, the modern equivalent of food stamps), since the cards can’t be used to buy Down to Earth’s prepared hot meals.
I can only conclude that the author is as exasperated as everyone else by the whole homeless mess and has decided to simply treat it as a form of cheap entertainment.