Does Having A Bear-Smart Community Imply Smart Humans Are Developing Policy?

by Travis Mateer

For Missoula to be considered a BEAR SMART community, policies are being developed to create bear buffer zones, where special trash cans will be REQUIRED of citizens to use. But as policies get developed, are we just assuming that the humans developing these policies are smart? I don’t think it’s smart to assume bear smart policies are being developed by smart people, and here’s why: enforcement.

The conversation I heard around enforcement was mildly interesting, and indicates that policy makers might not have the kind of smarts it takes to understand how words like “enforcement” become actual actions that will produce the compliance they are seeking from citizens in these newly defined bear buffer zones.

It’s almost cute how they think changing potential penalties from CRIMES to CIVIL infractions will entice judges to levy those infractions more readily against those pesky “repeat offender” who, for whatever reason, are going to require some level of coercion to get them to comply. The city attorney even said it’s a lower standard of proof with just civil infractions, so that might further incentivize prosecutors to make us a SMART and SAFE community. For bears. By fining the shit out of people who don’t properly secure their shit.

Good job, Bear Smart Missoula!

There were some bear smart advocates on campus who I approached a few weeks ago, and I asked them about homeless encampments, and if that was an issue they were aware of, since our own Mayor claimed one of these encampments allowed many pounds of BACON to spoil in summer heat.

No, they said, that issue wasn’t really on their radar.

Do I have an opinion about that? Yeah, I think it is VERY STUPID for the SMART bear people to NOT be thinking about “urban camping” as a bear attractant.

While it’s super fun listening to the smart people develop new ways for local government to take your money for non-compliance with their SMART policies, I didn’t get a nap today, so I’m going to leave it there.

If you appreciate the questioning of basic assumptions, consider supporting Travis’ Impact Fund (TIF), or making a donation at my about page.

Thanks for reading!

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

My Take On The Pov-Hiring-Alleged-Potty-Perv PR Problem You Never Expected

by Travis Mateer

This is going to be a short post, since I need to get back to decoding the fabric of the universe (synchronicities, man), but my take on this WHOOPS, WHO MAY HAVE HIRED A PERV problem is pretty simple: you get what you pay for.

What do I mean by that? Take ME working at the homeless shelter, for example. Why did I work for the Poverello Center for 7 years? I can tell you it was NOT for the money, because staff are not paid enough for what they end up having to deal with. So why?

Since I’m in a reflective space as a result of being in crisis from unresolved trauma, I can say my unconscious motivations were to take on such immense problems that OTHER people had–even an entire community–that I wouldn’t have to deal with my own shit.

What I’m trying to say is that the stated motivations people give to an employer like the Poverello Center are often times NOT the REAL motivations for why a person is choosing to work with vulnerable people in a chaotic setting amidst this broader societal collapse we are all dealing with.

It’s also easier for me to feel bad for what the Pov is now publicly going through because I remember hiring, and then firing, someone who seemed like a church do-gooder on the surface, but wasn’t. Nope, he was a fucking creep, and we got rid of him before anything serious happened.

If the job paid well, then it would be easier to identify why someone wanted to work there, but it doesn’t, so the Pov has to rely on the hope that non-monetary reasons, like experience for a certain type of career, or a calling, are the actual reasons, and not just a cover for someone wanting to be in a position of power over others.

You can apply this same rationale to law enforcement: you get what you pay for. That’s why, despite my SERIOUS criticism at what I think local law enforcement agencies (this includes County Attorneys) are allowing to happen to this community (and this country), I would still argue for PROPERLY resourcing them, if we, as a society, actually want objective law and order.

I’ll leave it there, for now.

If you appreciate my perspective, Travis’ Impact Fund (TIF) is one way to support the local, independent journalism I bring six days a week, and making a donation at my about page is another way to support this work.

Now, back to decoding the universe. Thanks for reading!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

A Road Trip Adventure In Review: September 25-29

by Travis Mateer

Friday I found myself at the epicenter of a deluge that dropped a historic amount of rain on New York City, especially the part of NYC I was in, Brooklyn. Why was I in Brooklyn? To pick up a very rare book that features the only poems Philip K. Dick ever published. When I finally got a chance to read the poems at the Marlton Hotel, where Kerouac worked on his On The Road manuscript, I was not surprised to see RAIN appear in the poem.

Here’s one of the 3 poems:

Soft as tin,
Melting in the rain,
Melting and dripping down,

Soft as stones that are limp,
That can be bent into shapes
And stretched out,

Soft as bones,
Mashed into paste,
Mixed with pale milk,

Soft as crystal,
Dug from sweet soil,
Slowly stirred,

It is soft as these:
The moon on a warm wet night.

Earlier in the week I was in Philadelphia to try and visit the kick-ass boutique where I get a lot of my kick-ass clothes one more time, since I left a journal in the store at the beginning of this eastern portion of my adventure.

The store was closed, so I continued on to my last stop in Pennsylvania, only to find out that when night descended that day, Philly erupted into violence, which was widespread and somewhat sustained, since the next day some level of looting continued. From the link:

Looting continued in Philadelphia last night as police released details of more than 50 people arrested the night before.

Video recorded after last night’s looting shows the huge damage done to a liquor store on Adams Avenue. Many of the store’s shelves were left bare and some looters dropped bottles outside as police arrived. Elsewhere, police made at least one arrest when a sneaker store on Torresdale Ave was being looted, according to FOX 29 News Philadelphia.

The police list of over 50 arrested the night before shows an age range from 14 to late 30s. The stores the suspects are accused of looting include a Lululemon clothing store; Rite Care and Rite Aid pharmacies; Cash For Gold; U-Haul van rental and branches of Fine Wine & Good Spirits liquor store.

While this happened the same day of protests regarding an “officer involved shooting” in Philadelphia, the looting is being depicted as completely separate from those protests. It’s with this in mind that I came across a big mural with names on it and a little message to artists from Toni Morrison:

Yeah, it’s easy to write about not remaining silent, but it hits a little differently when you start ACTING and DOING things to destroy the silence that narrative controllers think they can maintain by controlling the official platforms of information dissemination.

Here’s an example of what NOT remaining silent looks like:

And what does it look like to be trolled by the universe as you try to break a type of narrative control that has metaphysical dimensions to it? It looks like a print hanging on an obscure wall in your hotel that gets your attention after a day of too much craziness to even begin to describe in a post like this. Here’s the image that trolled me:

Do I need to remind readers that Sean Stevenson was allegedly CHOKED unconscious by Johnny Lee Perry on January 3rd, 2020, in the men’s dorm of the Poverello Center before the Missoula County Sheriff’s Office euthanized Sean at St. Pats by removing him from life support without telling his family?

I hope when you read this I’ll be back on the west coast, but the way things have been going, I’m not going to impose any expectations on my return. While I travel, here are the week’s posts you can check out.

This Is The City Where Sean Stevenson Was Born (September 25th, 2023)

Cyril Wecht, The Famous Pathologist Who Criticized The Warren Commission, Answered My Call Yesterday (September 26th, 2023)

When I Say Montana Is An Embarrassment This Is What I’m Talking About (September 27th, 2023)

The Cupcake Was Sweet, But Everything Else Was Just Sad (September 28th, 2023)

Destination ANYWHERE But Missoula (September 29th, 2023)

If you appreciate the work of embarking on an epic adventure spanning nearly two months while writing about what I learned on the road in an amazing account that will eclipse Kerouac’s little book, then consider supporting Travis’ Impact Fund (TIF), or making a donation at my about page.

What you looking at, writer man? Time to start packing for your return to the Big Sky.

I hope they’re ready for me.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Destination ANYWHERE But Missoula, Montana

by Travis Mateer

At the Arts Hotel in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, they encourage their guests to make art by providing a sketch pad, pencil, and inspirational quote from Pablo Picasso. I was definitely feeling inspired when I woke up this morning, bright and early before the sun, so I took the pencil and created the masterpiece you see above. I think this piece will look GREAT in one of the plastic-sleeve displays in the elevator they provide for exhibiting guest-art. Cool!

I hope Pablo is wrong because I’m imaging some crazy shit to explain the inability of Missoula to deal with dead bodies piling up. My masterpiece depicts a guilty-looking state with a blanket trying to cover up one dead body, while in the upper right-hand corner a shitty director named David exploits the violence to satisfy his own sick proclivities, which he foists on the rest of us by calling it a “movie”. Good one, Dave.

While I tell everyone I meet to NOT visit Missoula, or anywhere else in this vast state (since our corruption is a state-wide affair), an agency that gets your tax dollars (if you live in Missoula) is doing the exact opposite, and to be more effective in luring people to this corrupt state, Destination Missoula is embarking on a process to make a plan–a 10 year plan! Because that’s the kind of shit the nexus of influencers like to do with other people’s money. From the link (emphasis mine):

Nonprofits are looking to the future of Missoula’s tourism industry and they need your help.

Destination Missoula and the Missoula Tourism Business Improvement District are forming a ten year plan. The goal is to continue to grow tourism in the Garden City with a focus on sustainability.

They are currently forming a ten year stewardship plan. The goal is to continue to grow tourism in the Garden City while preserving the parts that locals hold near and dear.

Lovely, Destination Missoula, I’m sure your plan will be great, and even if it isn’t, no local media will hold you accountable for failing because that’s not their role. Nope, their role is the obfuscation of real news while promoting propaganda that protects those with power and influence in our community. It’s pretty simple.

Here’s more from the “news” outlet I called yesterday and left a message with with ZERO expectation I’ll get a call back. This content is so pathetic it would be funny if it wasn’t so sad (emphasis mine):

There have been two community meetings where locals spoke about what sets Missoula apart from anywhere else. ideas floated were Missoula’s outdoor recreation and numerous sporting events and concerts.

“It really is our community. Our community needs to be sound and healthy and happy before we can have visitors in and give them a good experience and that’s what the point of this is,” said Barbara Neilan, the executive director of Destination Missoula.

Um, I’m pretty sure LOTS of other communities have “outdoor recreation and numerous sporting events“, so we’re already off to a sketchy start. Then there’s the idea that Missoula needs to be healthy and happy before we have visitors. Does refusing to give proper investigative attention to people who keep showing up dead indicate a healthy community, Barbara?

The final place I’ll be staying in New York City once had Jack Kerouac as a guest, or at least that’s the claim being made for a tourist like me wondering where to drop hundreds of dollars for the privilege of staying in Greenwich village, the same part of Manhattan that Jodie Foster moved from in a flick made by another fucked up David, this one with the last name Fincher, which I watched last night.

Returning to Montana isn’t something I’m looking forward to, which is also very sad to me. I used to really enjoy the views of this town appearing on the horizon after a return drive from whatever destination we’d been at, but that joy is gone. I think it has something to do with the utter corruption of our entire criminal justice system and the professional victim who thinks she can manipulate the courts to punish me. So far, she’s right.

If you want a martyr, Missoula, I’m your man. So get ready for my return, because I’m more prepared than ever to expose each and every one of you who think you can get away with the shit you’ve been getting away with. That’s a fucking promise.

If you appreciate the work I’m doing exposing these fuckers, then please consider supporting Travis’ Impact Fund (TIF), or making a donation at my about page.

Thanks for reading!

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

The Cupcake Was Sweet, But Everything Else Was Just Sad

by Travis Mateer

I just wanted something sweet, but the first place I stopped was closed, and so was the second place. Why would they be open? It’s only the middle of the day, in the middle of the week, in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

They must have been closed so that I could experience the stratospheric irony of walking into a fucking wedding store as a newly divorced man on the day he would have been celebrating his 20th wedding anniversary. Thanks, universe, I needed that.

Sometimes I anticipate the needs of others before checking in with myself, but earlier in the day I felt strongly that BOTH City Council, and myself, needed to have a chat about my concerns, and what better place for that one-way chat than the Public Safety Committee, where our Police Chief, Mike Colyer, had to just sit there and listen as I expressed my concerns over the competency of SOME of his public employees.

Here’s the comment:

How many people around America have I told NOT to visit Montana because it isn’t safe? Probably just a few dozen, no biggie. And some of them may not even believe the stuff coming out of my mouth, but then I show them this picture and the reason WHY Sean is smiling next to Salma Hayek (besides the fact he’s next to Salma Hayek), and most people realize, at that point, something bigger than they understand is going on.

This picture, and Sean’s story, got me access to Falling Water, the house designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. To really understand why I went there, you’ll need to read the book I’m working on, but the short of it is, it’s a place Sean’s family visited, like they visited the Mennonite communities that surround the town I’m currently staying in.

Not everyone receives Sean’s story, like the Pastor hitting on the French woman at the Red Parasol Cafe, in Philadelphia…Where you get a sip of history. I asked him if he wanted to hear a story, and his curt reply was “I only care about stories that are in the Bible.”

Another group of people who don’t seem to want to help me with this incredible narrative are some of the same people doing interesting work with synchronicities. I’ve even interviewed some of these folks, so it’s more than a little frustrating to have even their meager platforms unavailable for broader dissemination of what I think is happening.

Oh well, their loss. I’ll give the first part of my manuscript to someone else.

I’ve got a few more things to accomplish before I fly back west, then it’s time to really do some thinking about what comes next.

If you’d like to help me out, Travis’ Impact Fund (TIF) is one way to do that, and making a donation at my about page is another.

Thanks for reading!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment