National award-winning feature writer, columnist, author, and poet Wanda Sue Parrott has covered homelessness on Central California's Monterey Peninsula since 2014.
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(Photo of Wanda in the California Redwoods by John Schultz)
started a revolution
forced the focus to fall on
hungry homeless folks.
Here in "paradise"
old women slept in their cars,
as they're sleeping still!
Folks rallied to help.
The Fund for Homeless Women
came into being.
This column evolved
when Friends of Homeless Women
tried new ways to help.
After seven years,
It's time for me to move on.
Thank you, Timothy!
City of Seaside's
broke the NIMBY mold.
highlighted his second term
as a prime mover
who let homeless
stay at Roberts
asked all mayors to join him
as hosts sharing space.
No one accepted.
Seaside's campers moved uphill
near the School of Law.
The campsite shut down
when shelter-in-place expired.
By then, things had changed.
vowed homelessness would be solved
and went right to work.
Thank you, brave Mayor,
for caring enough to try
and daring to fail.
CREDITS: Photo: Wanda Sue Parrott with Timothy Barrett (2020) by Rev. Elaine Gehrmann. Photo: Wanda Sue Parrott with Seaside, California's Mayor Ian Oglesby (2021) by Josephine Guerrero. Haiku Captions by Wanda Sue Parrott
Book: The Boondoggler’s Bible - How to Fight Like City Hall to Win!! ($17 from Wanda Sue Parrott, P. O. Box 1821, Monterey, CA 93942-1821) or from amazon.com. Website property of Great Spirit Publishing. Content copyrighted by Wanda Sue Parrott. For details on making
contributions to support maintenance of the website, see Contact section at “Homeless in Paradise” is a free public service self-funded and produced by independent journalist Wanda Sue
Parrott. It appears in Facebook, Nextdoor, and private e-mail lists. If interested in being added to the list, submit
your request to 831-899-5887, firstname.lastname@example.org. Copyright 2021 by Wanda Sue Parrott.
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the Fund for Homeless Women's
first co-founders’ team:
Left: Kathy Whilden
Center: Father Michael Reid
This trio started
The Friends of Homeless Women
to serve Monterey
Their fund started with
one $5000 gift
The Fund still exists
along with its spinoff groups
serving homeless gals
Homeless in Paradox - Part 3 - October 22-29, 2021
THE PENINSULA IS LOOKING FOR A FEW GOOD BOONDOGGLE BUSTERSBy Wanda Sue Parrott
BUSTING boondoggles isn't really a career, is it? If it weren't
for something William Randolph Hearst's grandson said to me around fifty years
ago, I wouldn't—probably couldn't—even ask!
as I prepare to put Homeless in Paradise to bed, here's my personal epiphany
that led to this call for tomorrow's cadre of boondoggle-buster trainees because,
to paraphrase a Marine Corps poster: "Uncle Sam is going to need
you." So is Gavin Newsom, as his California Comeback intensifies!
Heroism of Hearst George R. Hearst, Jr.
was descending the legendary marble stairway in the old museum-like Herald-Examiner
building at 7th Street and Broadway in downtown Los Angeles as I was
returning from lunch. Rumor said items too numerous to be put into the Hearst
Castle were incorporated into the Moorish design newspaper building with a dome
filled with artifacts and vintage photos.
We met a few steps above the Italian-tile floor that had—like us—survived a Molotov cocktail bomb protesting Hearst's boondoggle bust that helped change the communications industry forever.
The longest strike in newspaper history was fresh when I was hired in 1968. I was paid the salary of a cub reporter to put out an ombudsman column seven days a week. In charge of a team of six rag-tag reporters, I was exempt from "scab" (strike-breaker) status because of my high-sounding rank: Answer Line Editor. (CLICK HERE TO CONTINUE READING...)
Homeless in Paradox - Part 2 - October 15-21, 2001
CAN MONTEREY PENINSULA SURVIVE THE CHANGE
FROM PARADISE TO PARADOX?
By Wanda Sue Parrott
REPEATING the opening lines of last week's column helps me stick to my resolve to go forth and finish three final installments of Homeless in Paradise before—to use writers' parlance—"killing it off."
If reference to violent demise shocks you, read on.
Writers like me live in mind worlds—meaning domains full of metaphorical visions and intangible ideas that are our realities.
Everything from a short poem to a vast volume of history is a creative piece like a living thing to the mind that conceived, incubated and gave it birth. To truly be "finished" a piece must be released, else the revisions might go on for a lifetime. I named this final four-part series "Homeless in Paradox" because--now that California has finally declared all-out assault against homelessness--the metaphor of Paradise is no longer applicable to the Monterey Peninsula, while Paradox is a perfect portent of what is to come: exposition of persistent poverty in one of the richest parts of the United States. (CLICK TO CONTINUE READING...)
can homelessness be resolved
in just five short years?
Governor Gavin Newsom
just changed history.
He pledged 12 billion
on September 29th
to end homelessness.
If his plan works here
will it be a role model
for the whole country?
Why do I quiver?
Fear of re-reaching Square One?
Or Boonie's Burnout?
Gov. Newsom didn't just bust the cycle of homeless boondoggling in California. He blasted it. Is it any wonder that I tremble? (CLICK TO CONTINUE READING...)
Copyright 2022 by Wanda Sue Parrott. All Rights Reserved.
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If you would like to help Wanda continue her weekly column, which is solely self-funded and produced by her, consider a donation. A portion of proceeds also benefits homeless people in the Monterey Peninsula, California. Visit the CONTACT PAGE for more information on how you can help this important cause. All donations are Appreciated and used to support this mission!
CONTACT directly: Wanda Sue Parrott, P. O. Box 1821, Monterey, CA 93942-1821; (831) 899-5887; firstname.lastname@example.org.