It’s Hobo season again!

Blister

Tele-Meister
Joined
Nov 29, 2020
Posts
495
Age
68
Location
Upstate New York
I live about an hour north of New Orleans and an hour east of Baton Rouge right at the crossroads of two major interstates.
Every year about this time we get an influx of new hobos panhandling through all the grocery store parking lots and sitting at every red light holding homemade signs asking for “help”.
I believe it’s because it’s now too cold wherever they were, so they migrate down here where it’s warmer.
This annual migration will reach its peak in New Orleans right around Mardi Gras and then taper off as they redistribute themselves around the country come Spring.
Any of y’all in a colder climates missing your hobos?
I do believe I know where they are.
Howdy neighbor. I live near Picayune Mississippi
 

Resojazznblues

Tele-Holic
Joined
May 4, 2021
Posts
686
Location
At my Heavenly Father's House.
Quite a few good musicians and tunes have come from "hobo" culture: Robert Johnson, Blind Willie McTell, Jimmie Rodgers, Blind Boy Fuller, etc. alum. "Hobo" is what North American's have called the itinerant lifestyle. In Europe, Russia they were called "gypsies" and gave us "gypsy jazz" and musicians like Django Reinhardt, Ferre' brothers, etc. So, though often spoken of in derogatory terms, the itinerant tradition has added immensely to many areas folk traditions.
 

elihu

Doctor of Teleocity
Joined
Dec 24, 2009
Posts
10,158
Location
Texas
Me and my old man were hoboes when there wasn't another term for the life we were living. I know we were hoboes, because I've stayed in a hobo jungle. That's what the people living there temporarily called it. I didn't much like being a hobo, but that was where we were at the time. In those days, you got rousted out of town if you looked like a hobo. I hitchhiked, road the rails, and begged at people's doors, because my old man sent me up to their doors while he stayed hidden.

I'm sorry for people who don't have homes, and I can probably relate as well as most can, because I've been there. I'm glad I have a home, and have had a good somewhat productive life. I'm pretty sure people living on the street would rather have a home than not. One day I was living somewhere, the next I was on the road. I can see how it happens.

I couldn't resist TD.

Your stories always remind me of songs.

 
Last edited:

tery

Doctor of Teleocity
Joined
Sep 21, 2012
Posts
13,233
Location
Tennessee
upload_2021-11-29_8-55-8.jpeg
 

Whatizitman

Poster Extraordinaire
Joined
Feb 18, 2018
Posts
5,922
Location
WV
Right up front: Yeah, some of the people panhandling make a substantial amount per day. Grifters. They come at all levels of society and all walks of life. Some are very rich. Some are very poor. Whatever.

A thousand times, this.

I don't like them coming up to the car any more than anyone else. But I don't look down on them. None of us are that far from them, despite where you might think you are.

Panhandlers go to parking lots and gas stations, because people always have change in their cars, or are opening their wallets. Simple. And it works.

We can look down and be annoyed/angry with them all we want. But it's not like begging is a new thing. Nor is it gonna go away any time soon.

We can say no. We are perfectly within our rights to do so. We also have the right to feel guilty (or not) all we want about it. Handing someone a little change may be non-significant for the payer. But it could mean a meal (or a drug/alcohol hit) for a pan handler. We never know. For me, that's why I don't feel bad not giving change to someone. It's not a negative judgment on their part. It's not out of spite. I save my cash for my own purposes. I also recognize that handing out a little change does nothing to reduce homelessness or poverty, unfortunately. I don't think it reinforces it much, either, though. Panhandlers are still fellow humans, and don't deserve to be ridiculed or injured just because we don't like being bothered by them. They're used to be told no to. It comes with the job.

Maybe some folks are scoping out your ride and/or belongings. Thievery exists at all levels of society. Be smart. And by that I don't mean relying on intimidation and/or violence. I mean keeping your things out of view, including cash.

These are some things living downtown in a large city for a few years taught me. People will try anything for a bit of cash. I don't like it. But that's what you put up with when you live downtown.

In contrast, since living in a rural environment, I've seen many folks make some dumb decisions thinking they are immune from theft. Typically they counter with "we used to be able to leave our doors unlocked!". Well, for someone who has lived in both rural and urban regions, I can't think of anything dumber. If a neighbor is offended that you would prefer to lock your house, then it's time to get a new neighbor.

Case in point. For a while we lived in a townhouse, and our next door neighbor was dumb as rocks. Kind of an adult kid type. Anyway, he had a big shiny truck. We had a rash of car break-ins, and his truck one of vehicles. Well, not only did he leave his door unlocked, but he had a handgun in his glove compartment. Y'know, for protection and freedom, or whatever. :rolleyes: The thieve wasn't armed when breaking into cars. Didn't need to be. But he was armed after breaking into my neighbor's truck. :eek::confused:

My wife was always careful about not leaving anything in sight in a car. Well, years ago she got targeted at a popular running spot in TX because the thieves watched her put her purse under the seat. She was smart then. Well, she's smarter now.

People steal things. People beg for money. Sometimes they are the same people. But not always. It's always been this way. Be smart, and don't let it get you down.
 
Last edited:

Whatizitman

Poster Extraordinaire
Joined
Feb 18, 2018
Posts
5,922
Location
WV
I feel what you are saying. I really do.

When I initially created this thread, I was literally sitting in my local Walmart parking lot playing on my phone while my crew was inside shopping.
From where I sat, I observed a total of ten folks either holding signs near traffic or actively walking around soliciting. Two of which came up to my truck and had me roll down the window to hear their pitch. A week ago I was sitting in the same parking lot doing exactly the same thing and I didn’t see anyone engaged in that activity. The thought came to me that they all migrated like birds.
It struck me as funny.
I shared it without really thinking much else about what I was saying.

My original post was just an observation. Not an accusation or a condemnation.
I’ve reread it and I stand by that.
I actually intended it to be somewhat humorous.
Turns out my attempt was in poor taste.
I realize that the underlying forces driving some of those folks to do what they do can be complex and not easily rectified.
But, in my opinion, some of them are outright scammers. It was them I had in mind.
Regardless, I don’t come here to hurt feelings.
My sincere apology to anyone whom I offended.

Simple logic, AFAIC. People without stable/permanent housing are likely to go to warmer climates in winter months. Why wouldn't they? When the alternative is freezing to death, I'm inclined to think the vast majority of us would do similarly. Whether some are also grifters, thieves, whatever, has little to do with it, if at all.
 

zimbo

Friend of Leo's
Silver Supporter
Joined
Jan 15, 2007
Posts
2,927
Location
Rochester, NY
We have them around here in Upstate NY. They still live up under the underpass in the freezing weather. They're all looking for drug money. Some have been around for years. People give them money although most don't understand drug addiction.
 

JL_LI

Poster Extraordinaire
Joined
May 20, 2017
Posts
8,844
Age
72
Location
Long Island, NY
I’d never encountered a homeless person until I got married in 1974. There wasn’t a homeless crisis back then. The police did all they could to make them invisible. There was a guy who slept on a bench at the Roslyn Heights railroad station. When the police chased him, he moved behind a row of stores. I sometimes walked my dog past the station to the 7-11 to buy cigarettes. I’d either shake a few from the pack for him or give him the pack I had open. One night he put his neck over the track as the last train from the city pulled into the station.
 

Rockinvet

Friend of Leo's
Joined
Oct 17, 2019
Posts
2,072
Location
Virginia
At times I will carry some water or snack bars but never give money. Too many frauds. I also donate clothes and things to local charities to help out. Last thing I want to do is support an alcohol or drug habit. At one of our local traffic stopsI noticed a brand new scooter pared behind a bridge pylon. Sure enough there was the guy panhandling at intersection. So you just never know. Give em food water, snacks, but not money. I give that that to the charities I know will use it for good.
I just call them homeless because that’s what they appear to be. Nothing wrong with that.
 

Toto'sDad

Tele Axpert
Ad Free Member
Joined
Jun 21, 2011
Posts
56,057
Location
Bakersfield
I couldn't resist TD.

Your stories always remind me of songs.



I love that song. In the sense that Merle was singing about, hoboes weren't the street people of today. When I was on the road, we didn't push a shopping cart full of junk around and park it in front of a business. We traveled LIGHT. Nothing we could have on or in our pockets. We weren't social outcasts, we were just broke looking for a place to settle in.
 

pixeljammer

Tele-Holic
Gold Supporter
Joined
Aug 25, 2010
Posts
995
Age
54
Location
Colorado
I live about an hour north of New Orleans and an hour east of Baton Rouge right at the crossroads of two major interstates.
Every year about this time we get an influx of new hobos panhandling through all the grocery store parking lots and sitting at every red light holding homemade signs asking for “help”.
I believe it’s because it’s now too cold wherever they were, so they migrate down here where it’s warmer.
This annual migration will reach its peak in New Orleans right around Mardi Gras and then taper off as they redistribute themselves around the country come Spring.
Any of y’all in a colder climates missing your hobos?
I do believe I know where they are.

This is going to sound insensitive, because it is, but if I had any drive or ambition, I might make the Hobo Tracker 3000 website to track them from city to city. Or a deck of trading cards.
 




Top