Thank You, SFPD

[Brindlekin Tales – Book 7: Chapter 3]

Butterball

Re: New Years Eve sucked as usual! When doesn’t it?
From: Ezekiel Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: January 1, 2023 at 4:33 PM

> What’s disturbing is how fast he goes from reasonable and calm to bellowing and abusive to weeping and regretful and back again. Talk about rinse and repeat! He goes through an entire manic cycle, that would usually take a few months, in mere minutes.

I don’t dwell on it; he is what he is. I consider it as simply another opportunity to turn a horrible situation into a winning one for both parties…a la My Bodhisaatva Premise. What’s MORE disturbing is the vulgar pettiness of certain occupants in my building: ready to snap at me because they despise the homeless, and anyone who reaches out to them. Who do not take so much as a moment to see the kindness of my actions, and the two lovely doggies who are SO sweet and joyful. And Deek’s nuisances are a drop in the bucket compared to all the other disturbances going on in this neighborhood, more like a battleground at times than a pleasant locale. But that, too, is just another challenge for me to morph into a celebratory outcome.

> I have felt my own inner optimism-to-pessimism meter vacillate wildly within the space of a few breaths, so I know what it’s like; the difference, of course, is that I have self-control.

We all have that in us, some more than others, some less.

> I certainly don’t fault Deek, I know his life has been anything but easy and privileged, but man,

Exactly. He grew up in a poverty stricken area with crude family and community.

> I get hot under the collar when I read about him being a loudmouthed bully, screaming insults at you.

I’m tempted to as well, but it is MY responsibility to be better than that, since my behavior in response to Deek’s outbursts determines his fate, as well as the pups’. So I dare not stoop down to his level. And as my bodhisaatva teacher, he certainly puts me through my paces! Things WILL get better.

His mocking my difficultly lugging the JBL speaker downstairs is most likely a coverup for his own hesitancy to carry it outside himself. Because, after the first time he brought it downstairs from my room, he never offered to do it again…he just said “you can bring it down now” or “here, take it inside” ever since. I was surprised at that, but his reason why didn’t occur to me until this morning: it’s too heavy for him as well! I suspect he may trade it for two excellent speakers of lesser weight. If that beast ever slips off the cart and onto the sidewalk, it will smash to pieces like Humpty Dumpty!

> The appearance of the walk-on characters in last night’s drama–the Japanese lady offering to knit and the gay guy offering you the beer–was really marvelous.

Again, the Bodhisaatva Premise: there will always be angels to step in now and then, to give you succor through whatever ordeals one goes through. You may not realize this in the heat of the moment, but hindsight and self reflection usually raise the veil.

> In other news: Having a hard time teaching the puppy to not chase Butterball the cat when they are both outside. Indoors, there’s zero problem. They touch noses, all is peaceful. But it’s a different story outdoors; if he sees her, he gets excited, barks and races after her. I doubt he’d hurt her if he caught up to her (which he can’t, because she’s up a tree or up on the railing instantly), but it makes her wary and reluctant to go out at all.

Perhaps training with a leash and a painless choke collar will do the trick. It’s called a Martingale collar, and worked very well on Flaco & Lucky when I took them for walks. I have NO idea otherwise, how to resolve this issue, and I’m sorry you’re going through that. Poor Butterball, this is not good!

– Zeke K-Holmes


Subject: Three more angels!
From: Ezekiel Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: January 2, 2023 at 3:59 PM

Deek & pups came by yesterday evening and slept there overnight. They’re still outside, and it’s now the next day, 11 AM. But so far, so good. He was barely a pest, and I sat with the hounds after feeding them, laying down cardboard and making them cozy with a fluffy sleeping bag. Small flurries of New Years Day revelers strolled by in both directions, often emitting “oos” and “aws” over the pups, with their little heads poking out. Deek allowed me some quality time with them, though he remained nearby, schmoozing with his usual vagrant visitors. So it’s not like he wandered off, leaving me stranded.

The First Angel

One young woman stopped to crouch down and admire them, lingering for almost twenty minutes while her two friends stood nearby, chatting merrily among themselves. She saw me feed and settle them in before approaching us. “They’re so adorable!” she exclaimed while petting Lucky as I held Flaco supine on my lap and scritching her belly. “Aren’t you a handsome fellow!” she addressed Lucky, who kindly drank in her many compliments. Then she reached out to his sister and emoted: “Don’t YOU have the sweetest little face!” We had an excellent conversation and I made it clear they’re not MY dogs (though most beloved), but belong to a homeless friend whom I help out. “That’s awfully kind of you to do that,” she replied. Upon departing she wished me a very happy new year; I said thanks for those good words and wished her the same.

The Second Angel

About forty minutes later a burly Latina with her girlfriend suddenly appeared before me as I was rifling through Deek’s cart for any spare sweaters. The moment I looked up, she gazed back with a stern but friendly demeanor and said: “You better use this to take care of my babies!” She held out a 20-dollar bill, which I took and replied: “Definitely, thanks so much!” And off they went before I had a chance to engage them in amiable parley. I guess she had spent a minute petting the brindlemutts on the other side of the cart, and I didn’t notice.

The Third Angel

This was much later; in fact I had already hit the sack by 1:30 AM, after checking on the pups’ comfort while their master was also in slumber. Almost an hour passed before I suddenly heard Flaco’s barks, so got up and looked out the window. She was up the block a bit, perhaps warding off some crazy tweeker or someone else’s dog. “Flaco, c’mere!” hollered Deek. He called her a couple of times before she returned to his side after casually sniffing about. He swept her into his arms and beneath the thick coat under which he rested. Lucky was not snuggled with them, but remained by the lamppost hidden within that sleeping bag like a big ol’ lump. I decided anyway, to step back out to be sure he was fully covered and warm, and to top off the water bowl.

Upon opening the gate I noticed an Asian fellow of short stature and clothed in a thick brown overcoat, standing to my immediate left and munching on a burrito. I ignored him, a bit irritated to have yet another stranger standing so close to the entryway. I crouched down over Lucky and lifted part of the sleeping bag upon which he raised his head partway to see it was me, thus laid his noggin back down while I gave a few pats and a kiss. He was toasty warm to the touch, but I gathered up one end of the bag that stuck out and folded it over him anyway, so he’d have a double layer on top. With that, I picked up the bowl that had barely any water remaining, then walked over to Deek to observe everything was A-okay, with Flaco completely sheltered from the cold.

I flashed a brief smile towards the Asian guy (and he did likewise) as I opened the gate and marched back upstairs. A minute later I came back down to set the replenished bowl beside the shopping cart and, as I returned to the gate, he said to me: “That’s a good thing you’re doing!” I replied, “Well thank you, we’ve known each other for years.”

“Those dogs are very cute,” he noted while pointing at them with the half-eaten burrito.

“Well, I never know when he’s gonna park out here for the night,” I replied in sweet resignation. “So I never know when I’ll get a good sleep or not!” He chortled at that.

I then opened the gate and, just before it shut, he added: “I live in this building too!”

“Aha!” I replied. “See you around then. And happy new year!”

Wouldn’t it be funny, Wattson, if this were the same fellow who complained that one of those dogs bit him, and triggered that eviction notice? I’m not sure though, but he WAS Asian as well. And since I only got a single short glimpse of him on that eventful day, I can’t really tell. But if it IS the same guy, it may affirm My Bodhisattva Premise, in that this is all a scripted scenario designed to put me through my paces and help me grow in spirit. Which would be incredible, because it also implies the dogs shall be welcome back inside with open arms, eventually.

And didn’t I say in a recent missive there will always be angels who step in to give succor through whatever trials you suffer? So look what happened: three more angels last night, on top of the two just last Friday!

And didn’t I ALSO say no one in my building takes “a moment to see the kindness of my actions?” Guess I was wrong about that.

Here’s a pic of Deek & hounds from last night:

Click here for a larger view.

Lucky is huddled under that blue sleeping bag on the right. Flaco is curled up in the top center area, but it’s too dark to see her there. She’s resting on a layer of clothing Deek laid down; a bit later I tossed a large, black jacket on her, for additional warmth. I found it on the third floor back porch minutes earlier. Now, another pic from this morning:

Click here for a larger view.

Some time in the wee hours Deek obviously brought Lucky to join him and Flaco, along with the sleeping bag. Which is something I wished him to do, so was glad to see it…I just didn’t like the idea of Lucky sleeping that far apart from them.

Around 12:30 PM he called me downstairs to watch the pups while he could spend some of that $20 on a small burrito or two at the Chevron station. I said okay, put on my coat and, just when I reached for the door knob he hollered up: “C’MON! WHERE ARE YOU?”

So I stepped back to the window and replied: “I just put on my coat and was about to step out when you called me back to the window.” (“Jeez,” I thought. “I’m not a magical genie where he can snap his fingers and have me appear in a flash!”)

When I approached the canines bursting with joy to see me as usual (Lucky squirming on his back and Flaco standing up against my leg for caresses), their master was already many yards up the block. Around fifteen minutes later he returned with Wes…which is good, as the company of a street friend always mellows him out.

“It’s almost 1 o’clock, Deek,” I said. “Let me feed the dogs.”

So I did while Wes and Deek talked about whatever…I didn’t eavesdrop, but I assume some sort of weed exchange, as that seems the main reason Wes associates with him. Not like he cares to speak with yours truly, it’s always just a curt “Hi Zeke” and nothing more. At any rate, he soon departed to leave Deek and pups huddled beneath the sleeping bag their master tossed over them to resist the steady drizzle that’s been falling from the sky the past two hours. See this pic:

Click here for a larger view.

He DID have a massive waterproof canvas (don’t know how he acquired it) and when I looked out my window I wondered why he didn’t use that to keep the sleeping bag from getting soaked. It had only begun to drizzle, so there was still time to keep the bag mostly dry.

So I stepped outside to see if I could find it and, lo and behold, there it was folded and dumped beside the trash bin: smeared in several spots with runny doggy poo and/or vomit, though I doubt it came from the brindlekin. Or, perhaps, being tethered to the cart all night long, maybe they relieved themselves on it? Wait-a-minute, I think he had them off leash after he brought Lucky over from the opposite side of the cart, so that really doesn’t make sense. I actually have NO idea how that canvas got so fouled up! Someone else’s dog? A drunk celebrant puked? Be that as it may:

Shaman trickster Deek is a vortex of endless complications, difficulties and mishaps…much of which he seems to bring upon himself. A spiritual cousin to Charles Schulz’s Pig-Pen!

I also found one of the doggy’s sweaters lying by the shopping cart’s left-front wheel. So he must’ve removed it, and I can’t fathom why. It was only slightly damp at that point, so I brought it upstairs to hang dry. Don’t know if he’ll let me remove the other sweater and put two dry ones on the pups, but I certainly don’t think I can do it NOW, while he’s hunkered beneath the sleeping bag, as I’m sure he’ll yell at me for the disturbance and refuse my help.

It’s now 2:40 PM and they’re STILL out there! But it looks like the rain is finally letting up, at least for awhile. And maybe he’ll take that window of opportunity to migrate to a sheltered spot. I sure hope so! He told me a few days back, he knows several such locales to park at during a rainy spell. Regardless: no matter WHEN Deek decides to take off, I’ll provide him with another dry sleeping bag and take the soggy one upstairs.

Dammit, the steady drizzle has just resumed.

– Zeke K-Holmes


Subject: Had to call the cops again!
From: Ezekiel Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: January 2, 2023 at 5:49 PM

About an hour and a half ago he started screaming at me from beneath that soggy sleeping bag:

“THE DOGS ARE GONNA DIE OUT HERE!”

“I’M SICK, I NEED TO GO TO THE HOSPITAL, YA GOTTA WATCH THE DOGS!”

“FUCK YOU, ZEKE, YOU’RE NO FRIEND!”

I stepped out twice, about twenty minutes apart, and calmly told him he’s not sick, he’s just a drama queen and being a nuisance. He said he’d like a drink, so I went back upstairs and got him his ginger ale…along with two trash bags to put over the dogs to keep them warm. Lucky wasn’t even on his lap, but resting upon the shopping cart’s bottom rack, protected from the rain. I placed an unfolded,large trash bag over him, and handed the other to Deek, said:

“Put this over Flaco, it’ll help keep her warm.” He accepted it and, to my surprise, also took the sweater he discarded earlier, too, that by now was dry. Then he began ranting at me again, so I went upstairs.

Thanks to the traffic din through the rain, his bellows were muted. However, he kept it up so I stepped outside once more, whereby he asked me to accompany him to the hospital; I could watch the dogs while he went inside. I told him no, you’re not sick and I’m not gonna let you drag me through this stupid drama.

“YOU’RE NOT GONNA HELP ME? I THOUGHT YOU WERE A FRIEND, YOU’RE JUST GONNA LET THE DOGS DIE?”

I told him that’s bullshit, in this case he needs to help himself:

“You could’ve kept the cart dry by covering it, then you’d have a cozy nest for the dogs, instead of exposing them to the rain. You know very well how to survive on the streets, as well as take better care of the hounds. You’re NOT sick, you’re just a jackass trickster.”

“I’M REALLY SICK, BEEN SICK FOR DAYS NOW, I JUST CAN’T GO TO THE HOSPITAL BECAUSE I CAN’T BRING THE DOGS! WHO KNOWS BETTER WHEN I’M SICK BUT ME? HOW DARE YOU TELL ME I’M NOT!”

“Well then, you leave me no option but to call 911. They’ll take the dogs and keep them sheltered while you’re being treated. Does that work for you?”

“NO, NO, DON’T DO THAT, I’LL LOSE THE DOGS!”

“Okay, that does it then,” I replied. “I’m calling the cops and they can handle this. If you leave before they show up I’ll cancel my complaint.”

“BRING ME MY SPEAKER AND SMARTPHONE…NOW!!!”

“I’d rather keep your speaker outta the rain, Deek,” I appealed. “And you can pick it up once the storm is over.”

“NO, I WANT IT NOW, AND YOU’LL NEVER SEE ME OR THE DOGS AGAIN!!!”

So I returned hovel, called SFPD non-emergency, and they picked up the phone immediately. Told them the situation just like last time, then I doubled-bagged the speaker, and lugged it downstairs, along with the phone.

By then, Flaco & Lucky were standing around, but the sister stood against the ATM plywood, afraid to approach her master because of his yelling. She wanted to go home with me. He then picked up her leash and tugged her forward with no regard for that darling creature. I ran back upstairs to fetch another dry sleeping bag, brought it down and handed it to him. Amid his braying, he said thank you for everything I HAVE done.

“You’re welcome,” I replied. “But you’re disturbing the peace and I won’t tolerate that. NO excuse for such awful behavior, Deek.”

As he started to take off in the direction of downtown, a police car pulled up and a female cop stepped out and walked right by me to speak directly to Deek there by the corner, waiting to cross. I approached within twenty feet and listened.

She asked if he was banging on the gate, he said no he didn’t. So I spoke out: “That was three days ago, he’s just being a nuisance today, screaming at the top of his lungs nonstop.”

“Okay,” she addressed me, “I don’t want you two to get into an argument, I just want to know if you’re satisfied that he move elsewhere?”

“Yes, that’s fine,” I replied. “I’m not interested in pressing charges, I just need him to go.”

I then walked back towards Deek’s spot where he camped all last night and today, and started cleaning up the pile of old clothing he left behind. I picked up one black trash bag to discover three unopened cans of dog food inside…so approached the officer once more and said:

“You left this dog food, Deek, please take it.” And he did, promptly, and I returned to finish the cleanup while the cop finished speaking with him. One thing I overheard was she asked: “Do you need to go to the hospital?”

He shook his head: “No, I don’t.” (What’d I tell ya, Wattson?)

Deek then took off, and the peace keeper came up to me, and I said thank you, explained he’s a friend of many years, I care very much about him and his dogs…but he takes meth and is kinda bipolar, and he’s also a drama queen. He’s not sick at all, just being a public nuisance and a pest. And that having a cop show up may do the trick in getting him to quell this nonsense. Because last time I called, no police arrived by the time he left, and he might’ve concluded I faked a call-in. She made the most amazing reply:

“Sometimes that’s all it takes,” she grinned with a flash of pearly whites. “We’re here for that, too, and if he acts up again, feel free to call us!”

I told her thank you immensely, and wished her a happy new year, which she did in return. She then zipped away in her vehicle, and I finished cleaning up his mess. Including the soggy sleeping bag he left behind, which I took upstairs to hang overnight, above many copies of the Bay Area Reporter spread across the center of my dirty old floor, like my room is actually a large parrot cage. Chirp, chirp, squawk! May Glob grant me a peaceful night.

– Zeke K-Holmes


Subject: There went my tent, too!
From: Ezekiel Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: January 2, 2023 at 7:34 PM

In the midst of Deek’s bullshit, he requested my pop-up tent; this was right after I told him I called the fuzz.

“But you don’t know how to set it up!” I exclaimed. “You’ll just throw it away!”

“Don’t give me that,” he retorted. “I’ve set up all kinds of tents, I’m sure I can handle it.”

“But you told me a few months ago you put up a tent and the police ordered you to take it down, it’s too big. This is a big tent, too!” I countered.

“I never said that, you’re lying!” he scowled. “You love to make shit up just to have your way.” (Exactly what HE does, Wattson, but never admits to that. He’s a table-turner par excellence.)

Rather than argue further, I dragged my tent down from the loft and brought it to him, placing it in the cart. After all, it’s not like I’m gonna get any more use from it; it was gathering dust. And maybe, just maybe, he’ll actually figure it out and provide himself and the pups decent shelter for at least ONE night.

That would be really nice, as would him showing up next time with a cozy, warm nest in his cart, just for the mutts, and a waterproof cover over the whole shebang. Instead of a monster sized speaker hogging up all the room and forcing Flaco & Lucky to walk in the rain. Oh, interesting tidbit I forgot to mention:

When the officer approached me after speaking with Deek, and I began to describe my friendship with him and said: “I even help him…”

“Take care of the pups?” she interrupted.

I said yes, but wondered how she knew that right off the bat? Good guess, perhaps…or they already know my story. Not that I believe some of the cops (and others in the LGBT family) literally read my Brindlekin Tales, but word may have gotten around over the months. Or perhaps longer, maybe years and years longer, before I even MET Deek, and this is just my latest mission. So once again I surmise a scripted scenario by Bodhisattva guardians, in which Deek is playing HIS role (as a pest) and the peace makers theirs!

Besides the superb officer giving me a clue by interrupting with such an insightful remark, Deek’s OWN clue was to accuse me of exactly what HE does all the time: making shit up. I just don’t think this was accidental, but part of the Bodhisattva challenge to quell all negative emotions. And it didn’t phase me one iota, since I know the game very well at this point in my evolution. And the challenge is also not to cave in to despair no matter how numerous the demonic visions tossed my way by The Cajun Trickster. Thus I am neither worried nor grief stricken over this latest fake crisis. But most importantly:

In my stable centeredness, I did not express any anger or frustration and made it absolutely clear I don’t want to press charges. I felt very much like the star actor onstage who recited his lines with perfect execution. I’m a hero in my own play, not just my own mind…for the play is writ by others, mainly Arwyn I suspect.

And that makes the policewoman who came to the rescue Angel #6 of the holiday season. Or #7 if I include that amazing appearance of a homeless black dude dressed like a cosmic Santa in quiet meditation and seated upon a shimmering carpet!

– Zeke K-Holmes


Subject: San Francisco is about to be hit with a ‘brutal’ storm
From: Ezekiel Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: January 3, 2023 at 11:44 AM

San Francisco is about to be hit with a ‘brutal’ storm so severe that a meteorologist says is ‘one of the most impactful’ he’s ever seen

Deek had better be prepared, instead of playing his drama game. The dogs need protection, and I can’t provide that.


Re: San Francisco is about to be hit with a ‘brutal’ storm
From: Ezekiel Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: January 3, 2023 at 12:19 PM

> So worrisome. Poor little angel babies…

Deek knows plenty of homeless people who can advise him where to seek emergency shelter, and should be busting his ass right now, for the sake of the dogs. But he probably doesn’t know a bad storm is coming up shortly. If he drops by this evening and refuses to leave to hustle up shelter, I’ll have to contact some homeless organization to bring him to wherever he can ride out the storm. I’ll suggest he leave the speaker with me, so the pups can at least be protected in a covered shopping cart, with a pile of clothing and a sleeping bag. I’m not counting on him to follow through on this, though.

He’s a fool for just sitting there in the rain yesterday, bellowing how he’s shivering and wet, and needs to go to the hospital. Most of the homeless found shelter, he has no excuse.

We might have no electricity for awhile, either, but I hope the Castro and my building do not suffer damage. Sewers will probably back up, water system may not be potable.

Looks like walloping rains soon due in your neck of the woods, too, probably worse than here, though I’m not sure. But nonstop rain is forecast for your area till at LEAST the 17th. Jeez!


Subject: Well that was disheartening!
From: Ezekiel Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: January 3, 2023 at 3:40 PM

A short while ago I went to Golden Produce on Church Street to pick up another loaf of my favorite raisin bread. Returning home, I stopped at the corner of Church and 14th, waiting for the light to turn green. I looked both ways to see if I could jaywalk, and saw to my immediate left, standing barely three feet away (with another pedestrian between us): Arwyn!

So I looked away, towards my right again, then my left for one more glance at him. He of course acted like I wasn’t there, so I did the same. He crossed a few seconds later, but I decided to wait a bit, to see which of the two intersecting streets he’d choose: Market or 14th. Once I saw he was going up Market, I finally crossed and walked up the other…my usual route anyway.

He looks his age now, perhaps older: jowls forming on a face with lotsa gray stubble, and his previously golden auburn hair frostier than ever. He sported a baggy brown jacket and slacks, and a thick pair of gloves which may be what he wears at work for unloading heavy boxes from delivery trucks to their shelves one level up.

He walked with a pronounced stoop, reducing his real height to like six inches less. He’s twelve years younger than me, so is 60 years old now…but I swear he looks 70. Though as a trickster himself, he may have created an illusory appearance of morbid aging just to fuck with me. For he’s done stuff like that before, many times: appearing shabbily dressed, homely and worn down one day, then his usual, stunningly radiant self the next!

San Franshitsco: if you’re looking for a place bubbling over with pointless drama, you’ve found your home!

– Zeke K-Holmes


Re: Well that was disheartening!
From: Ezekiel Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: January 3, 2023 at 5:58 PM

> Holy Toledo!!!!!!

One way of putting it. Let’s see if he begins to appear in my world again, more often. Meanwhile:

Karlsen was carried off to an ambulance once more, about an hour ago:

Click here for a larger view.

That’s Scooter in the bottom center, wearing a black cap and hoodie. I heard voices in the hallway from Karlsen and the emergency crew, and made out two words: “hernia” and “diarrhea.” Now, moving along to around 40 minutes later, just before 5 PM when Sedge is supposed to show up to collect his $150. So I stepped outside to see if he’d appear…Deek didn’t, even though he should’ve been there, too. I only had to wait two minutes before the seller showed up, and I learned his real name is Hjelmar (pronounced “yell-mar”). He said it’s a Viking name.

So we talked mostly about Deek, that he promised Hjelmar some barter items in addition to the money I just gave him. Which items have yet to manifest. Long story short: he realizes now Deek is a jackass and not a good person to make deals with. Not that he was angry in the least, even said it’s his own fault. He admitted Deek is pretty much a nice dude, just don’t do any wheeling and dealing with him. I informed him I had to call the cops on him yesterday ’cause he was screaming and soaking wet in the rain, and refused to leave…so maybe that’s why he didn’t show up.

“Or perhaps he didn’t want you to accuse him in front of me, that he ripped you off,” I added.

At any rate, it was a most friendly conversation. He said that JBL cost him $400, and I informed him I looked it up on Amazon, and it usually sells new for $500.

“I later resented giving it to him for such a cheap price,” he admitted. “But he said he’ll cherish it forever.”

“Unlikely,” I replied. “He’ll probably sell it off or damage it before long, maybe wind up getting it waterlogged. He’s careless with his electronics.”

I described to him how sometimes he’ll bring a smartphone or speaker he knows doesn’t work, ask me to bring it upstairs and charge it. Then a short while later I’ll come back down and tell him it’s dead, or the charging port is shot…then he’ll accuse me of breaking it and I now owe him a bunch of money. But I never fall for it, his little schemes never work with me; don’t see why by now he doesn’t just drop the BS, he should know better at this point.

We also talked about the doggies, how sweet they are, and my grave concern over their well-being because of Deek’s poor treatment of them.

“He cares more about his gadgets than his dogs,” I exclaimed. “He’d rather place a big speaker in his cart and cover it up from the rain, and let the pups walk wet and chilly instead of keeping them warm and dry in that cart.”

Anyway we chatted barely ten minutes before he took off. But I was most impressed by his stable, calm demeanor. He ALSO remembers when I adopted the doggies for almost three months two years ago, to get them outta the rain and away from Deek’s bipolar explosion. I was surprised he knew about that at all!

But glad I got that moolah to him.

– Zeke K-Holmes


Re: Well that was disheartening!
From: Ezekiel Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: January 4, 2023 at 9:02 AM

> “Hernia” and “diarrhea,” two words that should stay as far away from each other as possible.

Unless they’re a vaudeville act.

> Poor fucker. That’s a sad picture.

The sooner he’s gone the better. Every time Karlsen is rushed to the hospital I pray he never returns.


Subject: A steady light rain over the night and into the day…
From: Ezekiel Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: January 4, 2023 at 1:37 PM

…and still going on. Wind only around 8 mph…so nowhere near as bad as predicted, thank Taranis. Hopefully that’s the worst it will get until Friday when we’re supposed to get a break. Then more rain predicted over the next ten days! However, I think they will be mild and sporadic.

Though for tonight, Accuweather says “Winds gusting past 45 mph; rain, heavy at times; flooding, mudslides, debris flows, damaging winds.”

Deek has NOT shown up yet, and that’s good because he needs to tend to the safety of those hounds, and there is no dry spot in my area. As for emergency homeless shelters that allow pets: they may turn anyone away with more than one dog.

I imagine his cumbersome Bluetooth speaker will not survive the weather. Small sacrifice to pay for the brindlekins’ protection, AFAIC. I sincerely hope he managed to set up that tent properly, but I have my doubts. More thoughts on Hjelmar, my new Viking friend:

My original vision that triggered the concept I first called “NeoChristianity,” then changed to “NeoPositivity,” which eventually evolved into “My Bodhisattva Premise” was given to me by the Viking god Odin, back in the year 2000. So I conjecture that Hjelmar may be a type of visitation, an affirmation, of my ongoing trial to keep the doggies safe against many odds.

For his spirit was most pacific in spite of dealing with Deek’s BS, as well as bursting with confidence about his own life, as indicated by his always impeccable attire and robust, positive attitude. I conclude he is homeless, too, as he mentioned he’s finally acquiring a studio apartment after a two-year struggle to get there with the aid of a kind social worker…though it may take two or three more months to finally seal the deal.

One would expect a person of Viking descent to be stereotypically tall, but Hjelmar is only 5-foot-6, an inch shorter than yours truly. Though certainly has the platinum hair and light blue eyes common among Scandinavians. I looked up the meaning of his name and got: “Swedish : probably a soldier’s name from hjälm ‘helmet’.” So fits in like a jigsaw piece with my vision of the warrior god Odin, and my reaching out to a Vietnam veteran years earlier, for whom Odin appeared in a dream to present me with a consoling, and most revelatory, vision.

So earlier today I prepared and sent off my latest Brindlekin episode for Marshall to read this Friday night, which I call “The SFPD Intervenes.” I’m glad he’s finally caught up to this scenario, which is almost a three-month lag behind my current tales. Since it marks the end of my dog tending (whether indoors or out) and the beginning of new struggles, in which the storm gods play an unwelcome role.

I just listened to Marshall’s narration from last Friday for the fourth time. As it gives me an objective ear whereby I learn more about myself and my situation with Deek & pups than I could otherwise. And I always wonder when I hear a tale read back: “Is the writing good enough to capture listeners’ attention?” I am, so far, satisfied that the answer is “yes.” I was amused over how he introduced that last piece, by declaring:

“And I have the latest installment of the dog-sitting–being abused and taken advantage of by a crack head–stories by Ezekiel Krahlin.”

For, technically speaking, Deek is NOT a “crack head”–he never touches the stuff–but is your quintessentially avid meth freak. Far be it for me, however, to pick a nit over this with Marshall, considering what a fine job he does of reading my tales, and that they are now out there floating around in the ether to Glob only knows WHAT other ears!

The rain has subsided now, for a time, as I complete this, my latest missive, to one Morticia/Tara Roosevelt/My Dear Wattson.

– Zeke K-Holmes


Subject: Shit sandwich headed my way!
From: Ezekiel Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: January 4, 2023 at 2:03 PM

Wind gusts may reach 70 mph!

San Francisco braces for potentially life-threatening bomb cyclone that could bring flooding, winds, mudslides


Re: A steady light rain over the night and into the day…
From: Ezekiel Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: January 4, 2023 at 3:07 PM

> Howling winds here. A tree came down during the night (though I didn’t hear it), fell on the roof of the “studio” (shack where I write), but amazingly, very little damage.

Thank Glob for that! Maybe you didn’t hear it because it gradually leaned over, gentle like. No winds howling down south yet, though storms usually hit Mendoland first before barreling down the coast.

> Seems to be letting up a bit right now, but I’m braced and ready. Power flickered, but came back on, a bloody miracle. Dogs curled up tightly asleep in their beds, dreaming doggy dreams.

Glad to hear the pups are so complacently cozy. But the cats? I remember you said one of ’em freaks out over a storm.

> Doesn’t seem far-fetched at all!

Steady at the Hjelm! May the gods of the far north protect Deek and his furry charges.

> When they made “The Vikings” back in 1957 or so, they built an exact replica of a Viking ship that had been preserved somewhere in Scandinavia. But….they had to scale everything up, because Kirk Douglas (who was not overly tall, maybe 6 ft.) and the rest of the actors couldn’t fit into the diminutive spaces where the Vikings of old once did. We think of Vikings as tall, and they probably were for their time, but by today’s standards, they were shortish!

You just popped my bubble with a troll-doll replica of Thor’s hammer! Like so:

> Thinking of that movie: Talking about it with my long-ago Jewish boyfriend, he laughed and said he called it “The Kikings,” because most of the cast was Jewish!

Oh jeez, funny! Maybe they were all gay, too, and had a lusty Viking party on opening night.

> Pithy, concise summary!

Marshall nailed it once again.

> Crack, Meth–they mess a person up similarly…

Ya think? Though alcohol ranks right there on the top of the list of most dangerous substances. I’d rather deal with a meth head any old day, than a booze hound. Though I’d prefer NOT to have anything to do with either type, if it weren’t for my beloved Flaco & Lucky.

Well, batten down the hatches, Wattson, it’s gonna be a bumpy sail tonight! And know that, should either or both of us lose electricity for a time, my thoughts are with you through this bound-to-be record shattering squall!

– Zeke K-Holmes


Subject: Deek showed up this morning…
From: Ezekiel Krahlin
To: My Dear Wattson
Date: January 5, 2023 at 5:56 PM

…around 8:30 AM, and the rain had stopped earlier. I had JUST gotten up and poked my head out the window, and there they were, crossing the street in my direction. First thing he asked when looking up at me, was: “Did he get the money?” He of course meant Hjelmar, who sold him the speaker. I told him yes, he got his $150 right on time.

To my surprise, the pups were still in their sweaters and DRY. Not only that, his JBL monster was dry, too, though unbagged. After I lugged the speaker upstairs and plugged it in (along with a pair of headphones and his smartphone) he told me he’s gotta go somewhere for 15-20 minutes, just feed the dogs and watch ’em and the cart. Fine with me, didn’t look like it was gonna start raining again any time soon. But wouldn’t ya know it, Wattson:

Another shower commenced a few minutes after I brought the hounds their vittles! So I quickly moved them to the sheltered bus stop, along with his cart. Tied them to the seat bar, ran upstairs to grab a sheet of cardboard and a trash bag, then set down the cardboard for them to sit upon and wrapped the bag over them both, with a little knot in front of their necks so it wouldn’t blow away. They sat very still and quiet, knowing this was the best spot at the moment, and they hate the rain.

FYI: the bus shelters are VERBOTEN for the houseless to gather in, but screw it (I thought) there IS no other protection nearby. Thanks to the fuckers sealing off the ATM alcove…and gating off the last two remaining recesses of the vacant shops across the street, to keep vagrants at bay (because they’d prefer to shove them IN the Bay if they could get away with it).

His cart, BTW, contained my Teton tent, half-sprawled over it, giving no indication whether or not he was able to set it up. I doubt it, and he wouldn’t admit it if I asked. I didn’t even bother to see if he managed to break one or two of the tent rods, ’cause what’s the point.

I sat there at the bus stop, petting and speaking kind to Flaco & Lucky, who I was glad to see were NOT shivering. Flaco gazed up at me with great fondness now and then, while her brother remained hunkered down beside her. I gave her little kisses which she returned, and comforting scritches behind the ears.

Their master finally returned a half hour later, so I returned hovel to fetch a large plastic storage bin, one of three I had stashed in my loft, along with its lid and a dry sleeping bag. (Unfortunately, Deek did not have the sleeping bag I gave him two days back, so I could take it upstairs to dry. Guess he just dumped it wherever once it got soaked, dammit.)

I placed the plastic bin on its side beside the cart and threw in the sleeping bag, whence the mutts promptly stepped into the plush refuge and snuggled up together like yin and yang. I set the lid upon the top side of the bin, extending it outward to form an overhang, and secured the trash bag between lid and top so it extended down to the concrete, providing further protection from the breezy cold air. It also kept the sleeping bag from getting wet, even around the edges that stuck outside the bin.

Deek was totally kewl for the entire meetup, gave me no grief whatsoever, no gripes, no insults, no nothing of a negative vibe. He did say he could use a few bucks, so I gave him $20, to which he exclaimed “Wow, thanks!” I reminded him that will be deducted from his next pay day which isn’t for another week.

The rain poured down for another hour or so, during which time I remained upstairs for the most part. Though I did step out twice, to check up on the doggies and see how Deek was doing. The first time I did, a friendly black woman from HOT (Homeless Outreach Team) had shown up to speak with him, then walked up Market Street as I approached. Deek said she’s gonna get him and the dogs shelter at 117 Polk Street, one of the spaces set aside for emergency housing.

The HOT agent said she’ll be back shortly, she’s gotta make some calls and talk to someone else a block and a half away, so just hang in there.

“But it’s three to a room,” he told me. “That’s where Boulevard Joe is staying.”

“Okay,” I replied, “it’ll do in a pinch, just to keep the dogs outta the rain. And you have a friend there already, so that’s nice.”

“Yeah, but I don’t wanna be stuck inside all day long just sitting around doing nothing,” he said with a shrug.

“But it’s a weather emergency, Deek,” I exclaimed. “You have the dogs to think about, not just your own needs. I’m sure they’d LOVE to be inside, warm and dry! Any port in a storm, as the saying goes.”

But the HOT lady didn’t “return shortly,” she took almost an hour, only to tell him she couldn’t get him in there, the place is totally booked right now.

“But hang in there,” she said upon departing once more. “We’ll get you a place soon.”

“Well, you didn’t wanna go there anyway,” I told him. “And it’s stopped raining for now. But the best deal is to push for a cabin [Deek’s word for a tiny home]. One-person limit, and great for the doggies. More freedom to come and go, too. But remember, everything you do in life is a trade-off one way or another, just different pluses and minuses.”

Scampy had shown up for awhile; I saw them there beneath the Super Duper awning when I stepped out a second time, checked on the dogs, then said “I’m gonna buy a new pack of trash bags, I only have two left!”

“You don’t have to do that now, I got enough,” he replied.

“No, it’s okay, the rain is letting up, so I’m taking advantage of the break,” I explained.

“Well, when you get back bring down the speaker, you don’t need to bag it, it’s waterproof.”

“No it isn’t!” I warned. “It’s the JBL Partybox 300, I looked it up. The label says ‘splash proof,’ not waterproof…big diff.”

I tried to persuade him to keep the humongous speaker with me while the rains last, but he said no. This is discouraging, as that means his furry friends will have to walk in the rain, instead of being sheltered in the cart, warm and cozy. If only that speaker had wheels! Well, I do have a small, aluminum dolly I don’t use anymore, that was for my vertical laundry bin, which I have replaced with a wider bin with wheels that I found on the back porch a few weeks back. I THINK I have a few bungee cords lying around somewhere that would lash the speaker to the dolly very well.

At any rate, Deek’s placid demeanor was most appreciated and impressive. But look what it took to get him there: a catastrophic storm front and the intervention of a cop!

I wished him well with God’s blessing and returned upstairs with that plastic bin in hand, after bagging the still-dry sleeping bag and tossing it into the cart…upon which he laid the Partybox 300, instead of those lovely canines.

– Zeke K-Holmes

P.S.: He lost Flaco’s rabies tag almost two months ago, I keep forgetting to mention that. Lucky still has his.

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