John Balderson's <a href="">Homeless</a> <a href="">Assistance</a> Center (HAC) Diary

John Balderson's Homeless Assistance Center (HAC) Diary

March 7 - March 13

Thank you for visiting this section of the Tent City/HAC web site. Since I moved into the Broward County Homeless Assistance Center/Huizenga Family Campus on February 1, 1999 after spending time from March,1997 at Tent City, I have had a variety of interesting experiences.

You are visitor to John Balderson's HAC Diary web page.

Below is a daily diary of my activities from the time I moved into the HAC until the time that I will be leaving.

Sunday March 7, 1999

Spent entire day from 8:30 AM to 6:00 PM configuring an IBM 365XD Thinkpad laptop computer for a paying customer. This consisted of installing Windows 98,Plus 98,Office 97 and Publisher 98, and removing Windows 95 once the Windows 98 system was stable. Will get compensated later this week once customer is satisfied with my work. Arranged to get styrofoam dinner from resident coordinator despite fact that resident manager said that none were available at 5:45 PM when I called and notified him that I wouldn't be back in time for dinner.

Monday March 8, 1999

Although I understand that there are curfew rules, sometimes it just requires a little common sense and courtesy to bend them from time to time.

Last night, there was a room full of residents watching the last part of the Lakers-Jazz basketball game which finished at 8:47 PM. The movie Crimson Tide which was what all of us were actually waiting for was to start at 8:30 but was delayed due to the basketball game.

However, despite this delay, the resident coordinator turned off the TV promptly at 11 PM, so that we never got to see the end of the movie, and caused a major argument because he did so.

The resident coordinator was also watching part of the basketball game, so he must have been aware that the movie started late. If he had an intention of turning the TV off regardless at 11PM, he should have informed us first, so that we would have chosen to watch something else instead.

I personally don't see why 17 minutes is a big deal in terms of turning the TV off, especially since a room full of people had spent this much time and interest in the movie,but I understand rules are rules. I wonder if this is also going to happen during March Madness basketball games where there may be 5 minutes to go in a close game and it's 10:58 on the clock and the TV going off at 11.

Tuesday March 9, 1999

As a frequent user of the library computers to create this diary, I fulfilled my civic obligation and voted for the library bond issue which will allow for more books and newer computer equipment.

No major problems with the TV last night, we actually watched Ally McBeal and Dateline about Andrew Cunanan (the killer of Gianni Versace in 1997) without a major riot breaking out.

Due to some confusion and a newly imposed rule regarding other case managers distributing bus passes when your own is not present, I was unable to go to BETA in Oakland Park, and will have to wait until my own case manager returns.

My own case manager had already told me to talk to another case manager this morning, and I even talked to the case manager supervisor who told me to talk to another case manager. There seems to be confusion about this issue and this needs to be cleared up soon.

Also stopped at Clinical Studies to check on lab results from last week and went to Airborne to pick up Microsoft software.

Due to inability to get bus passes to BETA and Clinical Studies,I had to walk back to the center and arrived at 6:30PM and was unable to get a styrofoam dinner because I did not have a ticket. I was told to wait until 9:00 PM to ask one of the female resident coordinators if any meals were left but I couldn't find any male resident coordinator to pass along the message.

Wednesday March 10, 1999

It was musical chairs time in the 500 dorm as the beds were renumbered since they have been recently "bunked". As a result, the bed assignments stayed the same but the numbers changed meaning everyone had to empty their locker and move their belongings to the new number.

I had already received the green light to move my belongings to the new locker when another resident coordinator presumed that I took it upon myself to do the move before the 9AM dorm clearing, so that I wouldn't be around for the chaos at 4PM. The new locker that I was assigned was already empty so I had already moved half my belongings by the time the other resident coordinator said something to me.

He also made a comment about my collecting things, which I don't always have control over because of the items I had picked up when I was working at the Swap Shop and the software that I've received from Microsoft by mail and from Airborne, in addition to the reference manuals I kept for computer consulting purposes. I bagged up the additional things I didn't need and waited 2 hours to put them in the storage facility, after being issued the dictum mentioned previously, and I finally decided to come down to the library to work on this diary and to pick up some books that I had reserved.

Thursday March 11, 1999

On the advice of a friend and resident, went to PEER center in Oakland Park to inquire about part-time computer job offered there. I found out that I need to procrss some paperwork with my case manager to become a member of the PEER center and be eligible to interview for the job.

Also went to Job Services center to sign up for BETA orientation on March 22.

March Madness college basketball has offically begun. Resident coordinator waived curfew restriction and let us stay up to 1AM to watch late games, including Weber State surprise upset of North Carolina. More March Madness tomorrow and continuing until Monday, so diary entries may be delayed!!!

Friday March 12, 1999

About 300 people, including myself were evacuated from the main Broward County Library due to a Freon gas leak. The library was closed the rest of the day.

I finished up a book I was reading at the Riverwalk and watched basketball for the rest of the evening.

Saturday March 13, 1999

Several residents wanted to watch NCAA tournament in TV room, but other residents from 600 dorm insisted on watching a one-star movie on UPN that had already been on TV the previous Sunday.

Facilities manager asked me to help him configure his home computer so that he could run some MS-DOS programs that would not run properly under Windows 98. Also did some computer housecleaning and made his system run a little better.

Watched NCAA basketball and other programs without any major objections from other residents.

Feb 28-Mar 6    Mar 14-Mar 20

To read previous weekly entries from the diary please click on any of the links below.

January 31-February 6
February 7-February 13
February 14-February 20
February 21-February 27
February 28-March 6

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