Tag Archives: Living in Dickinson, North Dakota

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Brief Delay In Obama Transforming The United States

During the second term of President Barack Obama, I thought that it was possible that there would be a civil war or widespread rioting within the United States.  The causes could have been an economic collapse, where a large percentage of the population could not afford to pay for housing, food, and necessities.

I was not alone in recognizing the potential for a civil war or rioting within the United States at that particular time.  There are studies and research results that are publicized every few months, that show up to 50% of Americans live pay check to pay check, meaning they have absolutely no savings or very little savings in the bank to use in case of an emergency.

Many people in the United States get by when they lose their job or have an unexpected emergency, by staying with friends or family members, or by receiving some kind of help or assistance from friends or family members.  But what would happen if 20% of the pay check to pay check people suddenly and unexpectedly lost their employment at the same time?

The answer is, they would go to WalMart or another grocery store, fill up a shopping cart with food and necessities, and then head for the exit.  If a 150 lb retail worker who gets paid $12 per hour tried to stop them, the retail worker would be informed that they were going to get beat to death if they tried to stop them.  Yes, there would be some shoving, and arguing, and during this ruckus, about four or five other families would be headed out of the exits without paying, because they had no money.

If you stop and think about it, putting yourself in someone else’s shoes, even if you are not a criminal, but you have absolutely no money left, you live in a city, and you, your wife, and your children are very hungry, you would probably try to get what you needed from the grocery store, somehow.  This might involve breaking the store windows at night when the store is closed, and quickly trying to gather and run away with as much as you could carry in a duffel bag.  Or it might involve breaking into or hijacking a food delivery truck.

In every city, there would be hundreds or thousands of residents thinking the same thing.  Leaving a grocery store without paying, smashing the store windows at night and taking as much as they could carry, or hijacking food delivery trucks.  Soon, the stores’ shelves would be empty, both from being looted at night, and from food delivery trucks no longer arriving.  There would be no point re-stocking store shelves, or having delivery trucks sent, if everything was just going to get stolen.

As a brief aside, this is what the “Preppers” were predicting would or could happen.  So for one thing, the Preppers sought to have enough food, water, medicine, and other necessities to sustain their families during a period of time in which they would be unable to obtain these things from grocery stores.  Secondly, Preppers could foresee that people from the cities would flee the cities, and end up in the suburbs, trying to take whatever they could find or steal in order to survive.  So Preppers realized that they needed to arm themselves also, in order to be able to keep their own supplies that they had purchased ahead of time for their family.

The U.S. Government’s reaction or solution to widespread looting or rioting in the cities, would be to declare Martial Law or a National Emergency.  When Martial Law is declared to be in effect, normal Civil Rights, and Constitutional Rights, are suspended, such as Due Process of Law, Right To An Attorney, Right To Travel Freely, or protection from Unlawful Search And Seizure.

During Martial Law, you could expect to have to stop at check points, have your person or vehicle searched, and be forced remain inside during curfew hours.

During a National Emergency, if you look up and read the laws and Executive Orders that have been signed, a number of new rules take effect such as:  All means of transportation whether public or private, such as vehicles, boats, planes, and trains, can be seized and controlled by the government;  All food production and food stores whether public or private, such as farms, ranches, livestock, crops, fisheries, and other can be seized and controlled by the government;  All energy sources and energy stores whether public or private, such as mines, coal, oil wells, natural gas, refineries, or fuel tanks can be seized and controlled by the government.

For the Preppers who have read the laws and Executive Orders that come into effect once a National Emergency has been declared, this is very troubling to them, because all of the food, water, fuel, and equipment that they have collected for their family, can be seized by the government, and redistributed to other people.

If you choose to continue to look into the laws that have been passed and the Executive Orders that have been signed regarding the declaration of a National Emergency, the U.S. can request United Nations forces to take control of certain areas.

So, for the Preppers, Militia, Red Necks, Hillbillies, Oath Keepers, Promise Keepers, Evangelical Christians, and Anti-Big Government people, they have long had the suspicion and nightmare that one day things would get so out of hand in the cities, with rioting and looting, that this would initiate the declaration of Martial Law, a National Emergency, which would result in the arrival of United Nations troops ordering them out of their own homes, farms, and ranches in order to seize and redistribute their property.

There are more laws that cover the evacuation, relocation, and assignment of civilians to work details as seen fit by whoever is enforcing Martial Law in your area, whether U.S. or U.N. forces.

As far as the intellectual and ruling elite are concerned, whether it is Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton, John Kerry, Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi, or George Bush, it is inevitable that there will be a necessity for a One World Government, where all of the resources on Earth can be accounted for, managed, controlled, and distributed more effectively.

The intellectual and ruling elite have already considered such questions as:  Is it beneficial for one individual to own and control 2,000 to 50,000 acres of land in Texas, New Mexico, Wyoming, Utah, Montana, or North Dakota, the wildlife, the timber, water, oil, minerals, solar and wind energy potential?  Does an individual have the right to own natural resources such as wildlife, timber, water, oil, minerals, solar and wind energy potential?  Don’t these natural resources belong to everyone?  Shouldn’t they be more equitably and responsibly managed by the government?

The intellectual and ruling elite have also considered what is wrong with you people.  Why are you so greedy, why are you so combative, why are you so ignorant, why are you so resistant to change, why are you so resistant to progress?  Is it because of the strange family values that you were brought up with?  Is it because of the religion that you were brought up in?

Once you understand that men can be women, women can be men, men can have sex with men, women can have sex with women, men asking women for sex is illegal, white people are bad, black people are good, black people have been disadvantaged, Hispanic people have been disadvantaged, Asian people have been overadvantaged, women are victims, women are weaker, women are superior, the government will provide for you, do not resist the government, then the world will be a much better place because you will all be so much more manageable.

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Banks Don’t Want To Lend, Or Own Property In Dickinson, And It Is Causing Real Estate Prices To Fall

Banks in Dickinson, North Dakota do not want to loan money on property, and end up owning property in Dickinson, and it is causing real estate prices to fall.  No matter what people in Dickinson say or think about the economy in Dickinson remaining steady or improving, the Banks think the opposite, as demonstrated by their current lending practices.

The Banks don’t want to loan money on property in Dickinson because of the following doubts about Dickinson:

  • The Banks believe that real estate prices in Dickinson will continue to fall.
  • The Banks do not want to have loans on properties that are depreciating, which people would walk away from when they owe the Bank more money than their home is worth.
  • The Banks believe that the economy in Dickinson will continue to decline, with fewer jobs, lay-offs, businesses closing, and wage rates continually decreasing.
  • The Banks do not want to loan money based on people’s income history in Dickinson, because they believe that many people will lose their job, be unable to find another job, and their wage rates will continually decrease.
  • The Banks believe that people in Dickinson will default on their home loans, because they will get laid-off, be unable to find another job, their wage rates will drop, or they will find out that they owe more money on their home than it is worth as its value depreciates.
  • The Banks believe that they will likely end up owning many properties in Dickinson because of people defaulting on their mortgages.  The Banks believe that these properties will be depreciating in value greatly, they will be unable to find qualified replacement buyers, and the Bank will be responsible for paying insurance and high property taxes on these properties for many years.

In order to not have problems, the Banks are trying to not lend money on houses in Dickinson, because they don’t want to end up owning many, many houses in Dickinson.

The Banks don’t care, that the depreciation of home values that they are so worried about, they are perhaps the primary cause of this right now.

I will give two quick examples of home buyers who were willing to pay the seller’s asking price, but the Banks would not loan money to any of the buyers, so the home price dropped 10% to 20% in less than one year.

A friend of mine who has lived in Dickinson for 35 years, currently owns a home with $20,000 remaining on his mortgage.  I believe his current mortgage payments are $300 per month or less.  He is single, and a couple of years ago he no longer had to make child support payments of $700 per month or more on his two children, as they are now grown.  He has worked at the same company for over eight years, and his take home pay after all taxes is at least $3,000 per month. He owns several vehicles, which are paid for.

He agreed to purchase a neighboring house for $134,000, which was less than the current appraised value.  He thought that he would have no problem getting a mortgage for this house, based on his income, his employment history, his large equity in his current home, and having no car payments, credit card debt, or other debt.  But the Banks in Dickinson denied him a home loan.

If you use an on-line mortgage payment calculator, the mortgage payment for the $134,000 house would be less than $900 per month, plus his current mortgage payment is $300 per month.  For a single male with $3,000 per month income after all taxes, with no other debts, why couldn’t he afford $1,200 per month total for home payments?

The Banks did not want to make a home loan to him with payments of less than $900 per month, but for twelve years on his income he had paid nearly this much every month in child support.

Within less than one year, the seller’s asking price for this home that he agreed to buy for $134,000 had dropped to $120,000.

This second story is about my experience.  I own a home in Idaho which is paid for, but I have been working in Dickinson for almost six years.  For about three years, I was a roommate of a home owner in Dickinson, where I paid about $480 per month.  Once the Oil Boom ended, and so many out of state workers returned to where they came from, apartment rents in Dickinson decreased greatly, and I rented an apartment for less than $400 per month.  However, I wanted to get out of this apartment, because I had some bad neighbors.  I saw a very inexpensive manufactured home for sale in Belfield, on its owned land, so this was something that I was interested in buying:

A trucking company in Idaho, that was doing business in North Dakota, wanted to buy housing for three of its truck drivers, so this trucking company purchased a 3-bedroom single-wide manufactured home in Belfield on its owned triple lot, for nearly $50,000 in about 2014.  This trucking company completely furnished this manufactured home with everything from furniture, to appliances, beds, bed linens, cookware, and utensils.

This trucking company in Idaho, no longer does business in North Dakota, so they wanted to get rid of this manufactured home, just like it is, with all of the furnishings.  Six months ago, they were asking $25,000.  I went and looked at it, and it was fine with me.  The property taxes were only about $100 per year.  The mortgage payments, would be much less than I had been paying in rent for the past six years in Dickinson.

I went to or spoke to four or five Banks in Dickinson, and they each had their own excuse for not wanting to lend any money for this manufactured home, such as “We have been instructed to not lend money on any manufactured home whatsoever, no matter how new it is, or how much land is involved.” or “We can not lend money because the land is zoned commercial.”

I thought that this was ridiculous, I have very good credit, this was less money than a new vehicle costs, and the Bank could place a lien against my paid for home in Idaho if they ever needed to collect their money.  I was seriously considering putting this home purchase on my credit card, which has a credit limit of $35,000.

Many other people looked at this manufactured home in Belfield, and tried to buy it, but none of them could get a loan from a Bank.  A few days ago, the real estate agent sent me a text message, stating that the seller’s asking price is now down to $20,000.  This is a 20% price drop in six months.  I would have been happy to pay $25,000 with a home loan from a Bank.

I know one other person in Dickinson now, whose take home pay after taxes is at least $3,000 per month.  He is single, in his forties, and he has been employed with the same company for several years.  He recently applied for a home loan with a Bank in Dickinson, for a home owned by a relative of his who is willing to sell it to him for less than $200,000, even though the appraised value would be closer to $250,000.

This Bank informed him that they would approve him for a mortgage of up to $70,000.  Which means they don’t trust him to be able to make monthly payments of more than $400 per month.  If a single person’s take home pay after taxes is $3,000 per month, why wouldn’t this person be able to afford mortgage payments closer to $1,000 per month, and a mortgage of up to $180,000?

What I am explaining, is that Banks in Dickinson right now are being very restrictive on home loans, because for one thing, they expect home values to decrease.  The funny thing is, these Banks’ lending policies are the primary cause right now for why home values are decreasing.  They won’t loan money even when buyers are willing to pay the sellers’ asking prices.

The Best Seven Years For Dickinson, North Dakota

In 1996 I moved to Tampa to work for a company as an engineer.  I rented an apartment on Lake Magdelene in north Tampa.  Up until the 1950s, most of north Tampa was hundreds and hundreds of acres of orange groves.  As Tampa grew continually, it pushed northward into these orange groves.

This area of Tampa was very beautiful, or it had been.  There were probably nearly one hundred small lakes, ranging in size from fifty feet across, to Lake Magdelene which was about one mile in length.  Besides citrus trees like orange, tangerine, kumquat, lime, and grapefruit trees; banana trees, palm trees, oak trees, oleanders, dense hedges, ornamental plants, ferns, and flowers filled these middle class and upper middle class neighborhoods.

By the time that I moved to Tampa in 1996, Hillsborough County had grown to nearly one million people.  At this moment in time, the character of Tampa was about to change significantly.  The area north of Tampa, the orange groves and small lakes, was almost completely developed.  These very traditional, beautiful, comfortable suburban neighborhoods that had been built from the 1960s through the 1990s were done.

An unbelievable and unprecedented amount of new development began in what was called “New Tampa”, to the north west, on the west side of Interstate 75.  On the west side of Interstate 75, there were thousands of acres of cattle pasture and swamp land, this became “New Tampa”.

Every housing development in New Tampa was a “gated community”.  You exited Interstate 75 onto Bruce B. Downs Boulevard, and drove west until you reached the entrance to the gated community in which you lived, turned in, and drove through the entrance past the guard house and gate.  This entrance was the only way in, and the only way out.  Each gated community was surrounded by a combination of walls, earth berms, and tall hedges.

Besides being protected behind the walls, earth berms, and gates, or you could look at it as being a prisoner, which was often the case when you tried to leave in the morning during rush hour, these gated communities featured “McMansion” architecture.  “McMansion” architecture is where cheap construction methods and cheap materials are used to create intentionally tall entry ways and high roof peaks, to make a home look enormous and expensive.

I believed that I had arrived in Tampa about twenty years too late.  On weekends when I was living on Lake Magdalene, I would ride my bicycle through these beautiful thirty year old neighborhoods, with quiet tree lined streets, natural lakes in the backyards, community tennis courts, and small orange groves here and there.

In these thirty year old neighborhoods, everyone knew everyone on that street, and the next streets over.  Husbands and wives bought one of these houses when they were in their thirties, and stayed there even after their kids moved out, they retired, and became old.

Some of these houses were large five bedroom, three bathroom houses, but most of these houses were modest and unpretentious.  Due to the economy and nature of Tampa, with large corporations, an international airport, McDill AFB, international sea port, and professional sports teams, neighbors would have been doctors, lawyers, engineers, airline pilots, military officers, ship captains, or professional athletes.

For adults in these neighborhoods, especially the wives, it would have been very enjoyable to be able to socialize with so many other adults with similar education, professional level, income level, interests, and values.  Parents in these neighborhoods did not have to worry very much about where their kids were, because all of the parents watched all of these kids.

After school, and in the summer, the kids in these neighborhoods, could have gone swimming, fishing, canoeing, water skiing, sailing, or played tennis.  I don’t think there would be any question that each of these kids was expecting and planning on going to college, because that is what all of the other kids did, and that is what everyone’s parents had done.  There would not have been aimless, depressed, self-destructive, drug addict, hoodlum kids around.

So I would have liked to have been either a kid or an adult living in one of these middle class neighborhoods in north Tampa from 1960 to 1990.  I think that I would have been happier as a kid or an adult living among peers with the same interests, values, beliefs, and goals, in this warm, safe, beautiful environment, doing things that I like to do.  But after 1990, no way, Tampa became too huge and overwhelming.

I want to point out, that these middle class adults who lived in Tampa from 1960 through 1990, with their education, professionalism, values, beliefs, interests, and goals, they caused Tampa to thrive, and double in size.  Though these adults created and loved their quiet, peaceful, happy, suburban neighborhoods on the north side of Tampa, the growth that they caused, changed the character of Tampa, to something that they would not have liked, the “gated communities” with the “McMansions”.  However, they would have acknowledged there was no way to be able to stop this, it was inevitable.

I also want to point out, that the kids who grew up in these beautiful, safe, fun, middle class neighborhoods on the north side of Tampa, where everyone’s parents went to college, and everyone was going to go to college, that these kids were so solidly grounded, that I think that they could do O.K. living anywhere.  What I mean is, I think these kids all turned out so well due to the constant positive influence of their peers and the other parents, that I think these kids as adults could cope with living in an unpleasant city or urban area.  ( I base this belief on my experiences attending the University of Florida on a campus with what was then 35,000 students, where some students thrived and some students could not cope, not because of intelligence level, but because of their backgrounds.)

When I was living in Flagstaff, Arizona, which I loved, I also felt that I arrived there twenty to thirty years too late.  To save time, I could say that everything about Flagstaff was wonderful.  However, beginning in about year 2000, real estate prices began to skyrocket.  And from what I have been told, growth has just continued non-stop to this day, making not just the price of real estate a problem, but now over development is a problem too.

The best, most enjoyable years to live in Flagstaff, were probably the 1960s through the 1990s.  The town, the forests, the mountains, the beauty, the lifestyle, the people, the weather were all so enjoyable, that this is what led to real estate skyrocketing, and the over development.  It was just inevitable.

Finally, getting to what this blog post was supposed to be about, “The Best Seven Years For Dickinson, North Dakota.”  From 2007 through 2014, there was an Oil Boom in Dickinson, North Dakota.  Though there was an “Exploration Boom” in North Dakota in the 1950s, and there was a “Gas Price Oil Boom” in North Dakota in the 1970s, this most recent oil boom has had the most significant and greatest impact on Dickinson.

How can I say that 2007 through 2014 was “The Best Seven Years For Dickinson” ?  To begin, prior to 2007, the average hourly wage in Dickinson was probably about $8 per hour, with no opportunity to work overtime.  There were very few job openings, and very few opportunities to get a higher paying job.  There was no way for most Dickinson residents to get ahead financially.  It would have been difficult for most Dickinson residents to even be able to save enough money to get out of Dickinson and try to move some place else.

In addition to there being mostly only low paying jobs, with very few opportunities to get a higher paying job, everything in Dickinson was controlled.  The wealthy families in Dickinson, and the influential families in Dickinson, controlled who got hired, who got fired, who got a promotion, who got demoted, who got recognition, who got blame, who got arrested, who was not prosecuted, who got a home loan, who got a car loan, who was evicted, and so forth.

When the Oil Boom began in 2007, it was almost like the Dickinson residents were released from bondage.  There was such a demand for workers in the oil field, that any able bodied person in Dickinson could get a job immediately for at least $16 per hour, which is about twice the average hourly pay of $8 per hour, plus, they might be allowed to work as much as 40 hours of overtime each week.

Some Dickinson residents, who were in their forties, who had always been kept down in Dickinson, always receiving low pay, never getting a promotion, never being able to get a better job, never being able to get a home loan, all of a sudden went from making $320 per week, to making $2,000 per week.  And for once, there was no wealthy or influential family in Dickinson who could stop them.

When the Oil Boom began, a graduating high school student who would not have been able to find a job in Dickinson, could now get a job earning as much as $1,400 per week working in the oil field.  A graduating high school student who would have had no car, and had to live with his parents, could now get a job working in the oil field, buy a very nice truck, and rent their own apartment.

Once the Oil Boom began in Dickinson, young couples were each able to obtain good employment, get married, and buy their own home.  Older couples were each able to obtain good employment, pay off their credit card debt, pay off their car loans, and pay off their home loans.

Due to families in Dickinson owning farms, or having retained mineral rights, oil well lease signing checks and revenue checks, began earning many families in Dickinson thousands or tens of thousands of dollars each month.  Farmers purchased completely new farm equipment, trucks, and travel trailers.  Some families dispersed this monthly oil revenue money to their children and grandchildren.  Many family members in Dickinson receiving oil revenue money purchased new vehicles, motorcycles, travel trailers, did home remodels, or paid for their kids to go to college.

Due to the amount of oil field work in and around Dickinson, many new large warehouse buildings were built, new office buildings were built, new restaurants were built, a new shopping center was built.  About five new hotels and fifteen new apartment buildings were built.  Local land owners, real estate agents, and construction companies made money on these new building projects.  Some local residents started and grew their own oil field service companies and construction companies.

During this Oil Boom, the City of Dickinson was able to build one of the nicest recreation centers in the World.  It has two indoor swimming pools, one outdoor swimming pool, skateboard park, ice skating rink, two indoor tennis courts, three indoor racketball courts, four indoor basketball courts, one volleyball court, indoor golf simulator, rock climbing wall, indoor track, cardiovascular equipment area, weight lifting gym, aerobics studios, and child day care.

The City of Dickinson was able to build a new Police Department, have a new water tower, pave many roads, widen roads, add stop lights, build a new school, and have a new County Fairground.

Would I have wanted to be in Dickinson from 2007 through 2014?  Yes, I would have, especially if I would have been a resident of Dickinson.  I was in Dickinson on and off from 2011 until now in 2018.

Unlike my story about getting to Tampa too late, where Tampa kept growing and growing, or my story about getting to Flagstaff too late where Flagstaff kept growing and growing, I got to Dickinson too late, because Dickinson is contracting.

In my stories about Tampa and Flagstaff, conditions in these towns were so good, that it was inevitable that they would grow.  In Dickinson, conditions are so bad, that it is seems inevitable that Dickinson will decline.

One of the reasons why I am writing this particular blog post, and the way that I am writing it, is because the people in Dickinson do not know that 2007 to 2014 will likely be the best years that Dickinson has ever had, or will have.  I began with the two stories about Tampa and Flagstaff, to explain the inevitability of places changing, even if you do not want them to go in the direction that they are going in.

In the case of Tampa, there was so much continued growth because of the regional economy, low cost of living, good climate, recreation, entertainment, night life, fine dining, shopping, professional football, professional baseball, professional hockey, international airport, international sea port, U.S. Central Command McDill AFB, and the University of South Florida.

In Flagstaff, the continued growth had nothing to do with the regional economy or cost of living, neither of which are very good, it was the beauty of the town, the Coconino National Forest, the snow skiing, trail hiking, rock climbing, mountain biking, the clear blue skies during the winter, the nightlife, friendly downtown, diverse and well educated population, low crime and no riff-raff hoodlums.

In Dickinson, after the Oil Boom ended in 2015, many of the oil field jobs went away, many oil field workers returned to the states where they came from, and subsequently other jobs went away in other areas of the economy.  The amount of oil field jobs continue to decrease, as do other jobs in other areas of the economy in Dickinson.  As there are fewer jobs in Dickinson, and a greater supply of workers than demand for workers, we are seeing the wage rates steadily decrease in Dickinson.

As there are fewer oil field jobs, fewer jobs in other areas, and wage rates are decreasing, the old practices of nepotism, favoritism, discrimination, prejudice, and exclusion in hiring, promotion, lay offs, and home lending are beginning to emerge again in Dickinson.

The people in Dickinson are unfriendly, the Police in Dickinson are encouraging people to leave Dickinson, the Police in Dickinson are discouraging people from going out at night, the restaurants are not very good, the restaurant servers are not very nice, there is shortage of women, there is scarcity of attractive women, the real estate prices are high, the real estate prices are likely to fall, there is too much crime in Dickinson, little entertainment, few recreation activities, and it is cold and grey for about seven months of the year in Dickinson.

The population of Dickinson is decreasing, Dickinson is contracting, and this is just going to continue.  The people in Dickinson refuse to see this or acknowledge this.  Some people believe the Oil Boom will come back.

In order for Dickinson to not contract, Dickinson would have to be a place where people would want to move, and stay.  Here are some changes that would be needed:

  • The Police in Dickinson need to find a way to stop the crime and drug dealing in Dickinson, without following, surveilling, and stopping non-criminal, law abiding people.
  • The Police in Dickinson need to find a way to allow adults to go out to restaurants and sports bars at night to socialize, without following, surveilling, and stopping them on their way home.
  • The people in Dickinson need to stop being mean and nasty to other people in general, and to cease nepotism, favoritism, prejudice, discrimination, and exclusion in hiring, firing, promotion, and bank lending.
  • The people in Dickinson need to stop being out-of-their minds as far as real estate prices in Dickinson.
  • The banks in Dickinson need to grant home loans to people who demonstrate that they can make the mortgage payments.
  • The restaurants in Dickinson need to stop using jaded, rough, mean drug addict women as servers, especially the ones from Spokane, Seattle, and Coeur D’Alene.
  • Dickinson needs to be a city that promotes health, such as hygiene, exercise, and fitness, and discourages smoking, tobacco, illegal drugs, over use of alcohol, and over eating.
  • Dickinson needs to be a city that promotes education, awareness, and spirituality, and discourages ignorance, hate, and Catholicism.
  • Dickinson needs to be a city that encourages women to be beautiful and friendly, and discourages women from being ugly, glaring, and scowling.
  • Dickinson might need to have a strip bar, just so men can see what women are supposed to look like, maybe they have never seen one, or they have forgotten what they look like.
  • Dickinson needs to have a good Italian restaurant.

I Wouldn’t Go Out In Dickinson On A Dare, Or If You Paid Me

I wouldn’t go out in Dickinson, North Dakota at night, on a dare, or if you paid me.  My experiences living in Dickinson for nearly six years have taught me that you do not go out at night in Dickinson.

I have had so many bad experiences going out in Dickinson at night, even just to get something to eat, go to the grocery store or WalMart, that I know not to do it.  From what I see, 95% of everyone else in Dickinson feels the same way, they won’t go out at night in Dickinson.

The number one reason or cause for people not wanting to go out at night in Dickinson, is the City of Dickinson Police.  The City of Dickinson Police have been so aggressive in scrutinizing, surveilling, stalking, following, tail gaiting, stopping, and questioning people at night in Dickinson, even when they are just going to the grocery store or WalMart, that people don’t even want to leave their homes at night.

If you aren’t doing anything wrong, you shouldn’t have anything to worry about?  No, that’s not how it works.  The City of Dickinson Police want to find something to charge you with, so they will ask you questions about what you are doing, where you are going, have you had any alcohol to drink, do you have any weapons in your vehicle, and more.  You are going to have to explain yourself to their satisfaction, while they try to find something wrong with your driver’s license, registration, proof of insurance, vehicle, vehicle contents, your activities, your attitude, and other things.

The City of Dickinson Police have gotten people so conditioned to being scrutinized, followed, and stopped at night, that fewer, and fewer, and fewer people go out at night, to the point that Villard Street, the main thoroughfare through town, is just about completely vacant.

Because the streets in Dickinson are so completely vacant at night, when a vehicle does enter a street at night, the Dickinson Police automatically assume that this person must be a law-breaker and up to no good, because no one is supposed to be out at night, no one is allowed out at night.

The second most common reason why people do not go out in Dickinson at night, is why would you?  If you went to the drive through of Arby’s, Wendy’s, or Taco Bell in Dickinson, the food and the service that you get, would be equal to what you would find anywhere else in the United States.  And this is about as good as it gets for dining in Dickinson.  For something better than fast food, you could order take-out from Upin Thai.

But going inside a fast food restaurant in Dickinson at night, or any restaurant in Dickinson at night, you are most likely going to find blue collar male workers from the oil field or construction.  If you have worked in Dickinson for two years, three years, six years, all day, every day with blue collar male workers, do you want to spend any more time with them?

I will say, that at the fast food restaurants in Dickinson, there are some young girls who work there, who are nice, cute, attractive, silly, funny, and entertaining, but you can’t or shouldn’t bother them too much while they are working.

If you go to a sit down restaurant in Dickinson with waitresses, if you are a normal adult who has lived in Dickinson for a few years, you know from experience that these waitresses are from Coeur D’Alene, Seattle, or Spokane.  They and their boyfriend were drug addicts who could not get a job or keep a job where they were living, so they came to Dickinson.  They are shitty, callous, jaded human beings, who just want to get high on meth or heroin.  Knowing this, would you want to go out to eat at restaurant in Dickinson, or would you rather stay home?

Nika Banana, She Is Everything You Said You Wanted

During the past three months, I have watched some YouTube videos made by a woman in her late twenties, who is currently using the name “Nika Banana”.  Not long ago, she made YouTube videos using the name “Nika Vegan”, but YouTube censored these videos.

I like Nika, she is everything that men said they wanted.  She has a pretty face, pretty eyes, pretty hair, and a beautiful perfect feminine body.  She exercises every day, has hardly any body fat, is strong and in-shape.  She is full of energy, ready to go anywhere, and ready to do anything.  She is direct, says what is on her mind, and she means what she says.  Everything that she says and does, is based on logic and reasoning.

Nika was in the U.S. military overseas for at least four years.  She is a medical lab technician.  According to her, she saved much of her income while in the military, and once she left the military and began working in hospitals, she continued to save most of her income, because she spends very little money.  If you watch her videos, Nika has a plain apartment, and she does not buy, use, or wear expensive things.

So Nika is young, beautiful, healthy, strong, full of energy, direct, logical, self-supporting, non-materialistic, and….she really likes sex.  Isn’t this everything that men ever said they wanted in a woman?

In Nika’s YouTube videos, she talks about her daily routine, exercising, diet, and work.  She also talks about sex, and how much she likes having sex.  She answers viewers’ questions about herself, and about sex.

What men like about Nika at first, is that she is beautiful, direct, logical, open, not bashful, and truthful about her interest in sex, and her sexual experiences.  However, it appears that about 20% to 40% of men, soon begin to vilify, insult, and attack Nika for the very things that men said they always wanted in a woman.

My honest opinion and impression of Nika, is that if you were polite, decent, and respectful to Nika, got to know her, and you were in reasonable health and physical condition, if you asked Nika nicely, she would probably agree to have sex with you, just for the fun of having sex.  However, once Nika has explained her openness about sex, men then begin to insult her and attack her for this.

In most of the comment sections of Nika’s YouTube videos, some men will leave comments like, “This bitch is crazy”,  “What a whore”, “This girl has something wrong with her”, “You would be likely to catch a disease from her”, or worse things than this.

Even though Nika is strong, logical, and tough, these comments get to her.  She doesn’t understand why men want to attack her for being honest about what she likes, and her experiences.  I think that I understand these attacking comments better than she does.

Apparently, and this has been going on for a long time, some men can’t stand women expressing an interest and desire for sex.  Just think about the stoning of women in Biblical times, the Witch Trials during the colonization of New England, and currently the Honor Killings of women in Muslim countries.

The worst way to handle the sexuality of women, is to force them to hide it, or punish them for it.  This is what really causes problems in any society.  If you allow women to be open about their sexuality and express what they want, then you have a better chance of everyone getting along.

So some of the nasty, mean comments that Nika receives, are because some men can not handle women being open about and expressing their sexuality.

The other thing that is causing some men to write nasty, mean, insulting, belittling comments to Nika, is that some men are abusive.  Their intention may not be to disagree with Nika, or express a different belief, they just want to try to hurt her, and make her feel bad.

I wish that Nika would see, that most of what she is doing and saying, is everything that men ever said they wanted from women, and how absurd it is that once men got what they wanted, they began to insult her for it, and attack her for it.

Here is one of Nika’s YouTube videos:

The Baffling Mystery Of Odyssey Theaters In Downtown Dickinson, North Dakota

What Odyssey Theaters is doing in downtown Dickinson, North Dakota, is a baffling mystery to me.  I have so many questions, I hardly know where to begin.

There is a shortage of parking in downtown Dickinson.  The paved parking lot behind the Post Office, which is also across the street from City Hall, which is also behind the Lilly Pad Apartment building, is always full, and is greatly needed.

The only way that this area of downtown Dickinson functions, with people going to the Post Office, City Hall, Lilly Pad Apartment Building, the Eagles Lodge, the Senior Citizens Center, Bernie’s Esquire Club, and other businesses, is because of this large paved parking lot.

It was insanity, for the City of Dickinson to sell this parking lot to Odyssey Theaters to build an eight-screen movie theater complex.  Where are the customers of the Post Office, City Hall, Lilly Pad Building, the Eagles Lodge, the Senior Citizens Center, Bernie’s Esquire Club, and other businesses supposed to park now?  Or, where are the customers of this Odyssey Theater complex supposed to park?

This whole downtown area of Dickinson, which is a mix of businesses, apartments, and homes, already has most of the on-street parking spaces taken up, even with the existence of this large paved parking lot.  Once this large paved parking lot is gone, where is everyone going to park?  How could the City of Dickinson, or Odyssey Theaters envision people parking three or four blocks away, taking up the on-street parking spaces of apartment residents and home residents, and this whole thing not being a disaster for everyone, the City, Odyssey Theaters, downtown businesses, downtown residents, and customers?

Another facet of this, which is puzzling to me, besides the shortage of parking, is the character of this neighborhood not being suitable for an eight-screen movie theater complex.  To begin with, this area of Dickinson is not modern, glamorous, fashionable, up-scale, metropolitan, and it has some accessibility problems.

For instance, many of the apartment buildings and homes in this neighborhood are old and not in the best condition.  These apartment buildings and homes are low rent, with unkempt yards, untrimmed trees, broken sidewalks, and old beat up cars.  I live in one of these downtown neighborhoods, and there is theft, vandalism, and drug activity.  Why in the world, would Odyssey Theaters think that people with money would want to park their $50,000 truck, Cadillac Escalade, or Lexus in a neighborhood like this, at night, in the dark, and walk four blocks to a movie theater?

In this downtown neighborhood in Dickinson, the people within walking distance of this proposed movie theater complex, very few of them will use this movie theater complex.  Most of the people in this neighborhood don’t have an interest in this sort of thing, some are elderly, some are worn out from their job, some don’t go out at night, and some don’t have the money for it.

There are some younger middle-class families with children in Dickinson that would like to go out to the movies.  However, middle-class moms from better neighborhoods are not going to like having to park on the street, in the dark at night, in this old neighborhood, and walk several blocks to this movie theater complex.

Here is why movie theater complexes work well at shopping malls and shopping centers, but less well in an old downtown neighborhood:

Malls and shopping centers have very large paved parking lots which are clean, well lighted, with good visibility, where families can get everyone unloaded from the vehicle in a safe manner, and get organized.  In an old downtown neighborhood with on-street parking, the lighting is not as good, you and others are not as visible, street traffic is passing directly beside you, your vehicle unloading and walk has more obstructions.

Malls and shopping centers are usually surrounded by family restaurants and fast food restaurants.  In an old downtown neighborhood, there may not be any family restaurants or fast food restaurants, which is the case in this downtown location in Dickinson.

Malls and shopping centers allow patrons to get inside out of the weather, and then go do other things before or after the movie, such as try different food vendors, shop for clothes, jewelry, electronics, toys, etcetera.  With a stand-alone movie theater complex in an old downtown neighborhood, there might not be any other food vendors, or retail shops open after 6:00 p.m., which is the case in this downtown location in Dickinson.

From what I have seen in Dickinson, virtually everyone over 50 years old does not like to go out at night after 6:00 p.m., for any reason whatsoever, they want to be home.  They do not even go out to dinner after 6:00 p.m.  The people in Dickinson between 40 to 50 years old try to make it home by 7:00 p.m.

The people in Dickinson between the ages of 30 to 40 who are married, they like to be home by 7:00 p.m., and then they are home for the night.

The single people in Dickinson under 40 years old, and the married people under 30 years old, some of them stay out late, going to bars and restaurants, or socializing.  However, I think that many of these people who do go out at night in Dickinson, don’t have much interest in going to movies, they want to eat, drink alcohol, and smoke.

With cable television, satellite television, Netflix, and the internet, I don’t think that many people in Dickinson have an interest in going to a movie theater, they would rather be at home.  Because of the weather in North Dakota, people living far out in rural areas, and North Dakotans liking to drink and smoke, I think that they prefer to stay home and not go to movie theaters.

There are just a few younger middle-class and lower middle-class families that would enjoy going to see movies at a movie theater in Dickinson, but with it being located in the old downtown neighborhood in Dickinson, this is not very appealing or convenient for them.

I don’t know why no one from Odyssey Theaters saw the things that I have pointed out.  I am interested to see what happens.  I do not think that they will have very many customers after the first few months of operation in Dickinson.

The Nicest Girl That I Have Ever Met

About six weeks ago in Dickinson, North Dakota, I stopped at a business that I have been going to for the past five years.  This time, there was young lady working there, who I had never met or seen before.  She was so friendly and nice to me, that I couldn’t believe this was happening.

I said to her, “You are so nice and friendly, that you must not be from Dickinson, where are you from?”  She said, “Dickinson, I am from Dickinson, but I know what you mean.”

She continued to smile, smirk, and act silly a little bit.  I liked her very much.  In order to not be rude, too forward, or inappropriate, I asked her just one more question, which I don’t even remember what I asked her, but her answer was that she was going away to school in August, and she told me where.

I would have liked to have asked her one hundred questions.  I mostly wanted to know how and why I had never met her, seen her, or heard about her before.  I had so many thoughts in my head, I wished that I would have met her a long time ago.

Even just seeing her and talking to her briefly every few days, and looking forward to seeing her, would have cheered me up very much.  Living in Dickinson, for me, is like being in prison.  The people in Dickinson are so mean, nasty, unfriendly, uncooperative, unhelpful, scheming, and undermining.  The women in Dickinson, are fat, overweight, unattractive, glaring, scowling, sneering, snarling, and leering.

I couldn’t believe that this young lady was from Dickinson, but anomalies like this happen sometimes, like Marinna Marsh for instance.  Like Marinna, who is married, I thought that it would be best for me to stay away from this nice, friendly, attractive young lady.  I didn’t want to bother her, make her unhappy, or make her uncomfortable.

I deliberately tried to stay away from this business, because I didn’t want to see this young lady again.  It would be too much for me, being reminded that there is someone like this not far away, but that I couldn’t go see her, for so many reasons.  As much as I liked her, I would probably never be able to have a relationship with her, of any kind, because I am nearly 50 years old.

I don’t feel like I am 50.  It is like I don’t know.  I feel more like I am about 8, or 20, I don’t know.  I do feel more tired than I have ever felt before, more weak, and I have more health problems, which make me feel like I am going to die soon, so I must be old.

On Monday, August 27, I had to go to this business again, and I thought that this young lady would be away at school by now, that she wouldn’t be there.  She was there, acting as silly, nice, and friendly as ever.  I was trying not to smirk or smile the slightest bit, but I was failing, and she started to smile, so I tried not to look at her.  I told her that I remembered talking to her before, and I asked her one question.  She answered, then scooted away.

I would have liked to have asked her, what her name was.  I would have liked to have been able to say more to her.  I wished that I would have met her sooner, I wished that she was not leaving.  I hoped that I didn’t make her uncomfortable.  I really had not expected her to be there.  I didn’t get the chance to say anything else to her, which was for the best, because it probably would have made her irritated or angry, I thought.

After I left, I tried to put myself in her position, to try to understand how she perceives things, what she wants, and what she thinks.  I vowed that I would not go back to this business until she was gone.  She told me that she was leaving Friday.

On Tuesday, I knew all day long that I was not going back to this business, that is what I promised, right?  I intentionally went to another business, to make sure not to go anywhere near her.  But, at this other business, there was an unexpected problem, where I could not get what I came there for.  I said to myself, “Fuck it, I am just going to go there, even if it makes her mad.  I will just get yelled at for bothering her, and I won’t say anything as I am waiting for the thing that I came for, that would just make everything worse.”

When I walked in, she was there, and she greeted me by name very happily and friendly, as if she was glad to see me, and was expecting me.  I just said, hello, and I didn’t ask any questions of her.  She continued to be very friendly, nice, smiling, and silly acting with me for a little bit, and then she went away.  I learned her name, and then everything made more sense for me.

Two years ago, I wrote a series of three blog posts titled, “Bohemians, Romanians, Gypsies, and Reincarnation in Dickinson, North Dakota”.  What had been the main inspiration for me to write these three blog posts two years ago, was this young lady’s relative, named “Emily”.

Though I never mentioned “Emily” by name in these three blog posts about “Bohemians”, Emily was one of the main causes for me to look up, read, and learn about the Bohemians that settled near Dickinson, North Dakota in the late 1800s.  Unlike everybody else in Dickinson, Emily was always very nice and friendly to me.  Emily was attractive, fun, funny, affectionate, and outgoing, and was nice to almost everyone, including people who were not from Dickinson.

I did mention in these three blog posts from two years ago about Bohemians, that Emily did have a very unusual last name which is found no where else in the United States, and that I wished I could tell it, it was so unique.  I will tell it now, it is “Zastoupil”, and this young lady that I am writing about in this blog post, has this same last name.  Yup, she is Bohemian, just like Emily, and Marinna Marsh.

I am not going to look at her Facebook page until she gets settled into her Fall semester at school, so that she isn’t too stressed out when she sees notification that I looked at her Facebook page.  But I did look at her Twitter tweets, which answer about fifty of the questions that I had wanted to ask her.