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What is an Urban Hobo

What is an Urban Hobo

For those that may not be familiar with “Hobos”, it may help to give you brief history.

The first recorded use of the term Hobo appeared in the Western U.S. around 1890. However, the Hobo movement begun much earlier, right after the end of the Civil War. It is not clear where the term Hobo originated. Some suggest the origins come from the farming term hoe-boy meaning “farmhand”. Others suggest that it comes from the railroad greeting Ho beau, or the syllabic abbreviation of homeward bound (i.e., HO BO). Essentially a Hobo was a migratory laborer, a wandering worker. Due to economic strife, it was necessary for many men to leave home in search of work. Hobos are closely associated to the railroad. As they moved across the country, the railroad was the preferred mode of transportation. Sooner or later hobos would return home to their families. Over time, the term hobo became synonymous with “Tramp” and “Bum”. Hobos were neither! The difference being that hobos travelled to work. Tramps travelled looking for handouts. They only worked when absolutely necessary. Bums seldom if ever travelled, and never worked. Hobos even developed a strict code of ethics which they lived by, something neither tramps or bums concerned themselves with. The code of ethics read as follows;

1. Decide your own life, don’t let another person run or rule you.
2. When in town, always respect the local law and officials, and try to be a gentleman at all times.
3. Don’t take advantage of someone who is in a vulnerable situation, locals or other hobos.
4. Always try to find work, even if temporary, and always seek out jobs nobody wants. By doing so you not only help a business along, but ensure employment should you return to that town again.
5. When no employment is available, make your own work by using your added talents at crafts.
6. Do not allow yourself to become a stupid drunk and set a bad example for locals’ treatment of other hobos.
7. When jungling (i.e., camping) in town, respect handouts, do not wear them out, another hobo will be coming along who will need them as bad, if not worse than you.
8. Always respect nature, do not leave garbage where you are jungling.
9. If in a community jungle, always pitch in and help.
10. Try to stay clean, and boil up wherever possible.
11. When traveling, ride your train respectfully, take no personal chances, cause no problems with the operating crew or host railroad, act like an extra crew member.
12. Do not cause problems in a train yard, another hobo will be coming along who will need passage through that yard.
13. Do not allow other hobos to molest children, expose all molesters to authorities, they are the worst garbage to infest any society.
14. Help all runaway children, and try to induce them to return home.
15. Help your fellow hobos whenever and wherever needed, you may need their help someday.
16. If present at a hobo court and you have testimony, give it. Whether for or against the accused, your voice counts!

Today, the term Hobo evokes a romantic image of someone who took charge of their own destiny and embraced their spirit of adventure. Someone who lived their own life by their own rules. Someone who followed their own path.

Urban Hobo pays tribute to the Hobo spirit by encouraging others to embrace their spirit of adventure by exploring their city, state or region. Embrace your own sense of style and taste. Live your own life. Choose your own path.

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Urban Hobo Hits the News

We hit the BIG TIME!!!! Urban Hobo made it to an online magazine. Wooooo Hoooo!!
Okay, I shouldn’t get so excited, but I can’t help it….I am.

It’s a great piece that speaks about how we got started and our journey to where we are today. If you are not from El Paso, you can check it out here

We are so thankful for the staff at 2310ScenicDr2310ScenicDr for posting our story.

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Tools…Juan’s Perspective

One of the things that gives our art work a unique character are the tools we use. These aren’t just any run-of-the-mill hardware store tools. These tools have a history. A soul. Many of them belonged to our parents and grandparents. We don’t simply enjoy using them because of their family history. It goes much deeper than that, because we each grew up using these very same tools. And, each of them has provenance. Each of these tools were used in a professional trade.

Here are a few examples of the tools we currently employ in our tin work. The two dollies were used by my Grandpa Smith in his Radiator/Body Shop in the 1920’s, ‘30’s and ‘40’s. Back when cars were made from actual steel. If you needed to shape a new body part or re-shape a damaged one, you would place the appropriate dolly behind the piece of steel and pound on the other side with a hammer, until the desired shape was achieved. These dollies are made from solid blocks of steel. After they were retired to my Grandfather’s personal workshop, I used them for many “important” projects when I was a kid. I even used them to pound out a few dents in friend’s cars.

One of the ball peen hammers belonged to my Grandpa Swinford. He used it in his carpentry business and I used it when I first learned to hammer nails (it was a lot lighter than a claw hammer and I hit the wood as often as I hit the nail, so it really didn’t matter if it was the right tool or not).

The other ball peen hammer belonged to Shawn’s Mother, Phyllis. She used it in her Art Gallery. Shawn spent a lot of time working in the gallery and used it to hang pictures.

Each of these tools were originally used professionally, for years, in artful endeavors. Over time they developed scars and wear and characters all their own. These very tools were used by our parents and grandparents to teach us skills and pass along a little bit of their knowledge. We are carrying on that tradition by using them in our own artful endeavors. Used together, they shape our tin work and give each piece a unique appearance and a little bit of history all their own.

 

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New Inventory at Urban-Hobo.com

 

Funky, Kitschy, Dia de Los Muertos

What a fun way to brighten your kitchen wall; add a “pop of color” in a small nook or any part of your home! They are small yet fun pieces of art that can be added anywhere without breaking the bank. We never knew how popular they would become, so we are going to continue adding more to the collection.

I was born and raised on the border and have always enjoyed the bright colors, history and culture of Mexican folk art. Juan and I try to capture that in our funky eclectic art. Simple, colorful….FUN!

If you are interested in any of these paintings, please email me shawn@urban-hobo.com. They are easy to ship and if you are located in the El Paso area, I am happy to deliver! (smiley face)

Sarape Truck 11X 14 acrylic $35.00

VW Dia de Los Muertos 8X10 acrylic $25.00

Collage Folk Art 12X12 acrylic $30.00

I tried to take the best pictures, however, if you need additional info, photos, questions or comments, please email me shawn@urban-hobo.com.

To see some of the sweet treats we deliver, be sure to head to our website Urban Hobo!

 

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The move is on!!!!

We’ve been spending the last several weeks getting rid of more STUFF and revamping our furnishings. We are getting ready for our next chapter …our road to adventure…our move to Texas.

It’s exciting because it has been quite some time since I lived in my hometown AND Juan as never lived in this part of the country. Juan LOVES the Southwest and has enjoyed our trips to Texas and New Mexico….he is a big lover of history and has always been fascinated with Billy the Kid.

I do have mixed emotions as I am leaving many of my family members whom I love so much! However, we are not far from one another and a quick hop on a plane or even a drive…will get us together quickly!

We are looking forward to trying new things and taking chances! I’m all about taking chances right now…or even a calculated risk. Life is too short and I do not wish to look back with regrets. If I fail miserably, well at least I had fun trying and learned how “NOT” to do something that way again. (wink wink smiley face)

Much different from last year, Juan and I are managing our STUFF much better, we are not ready to argue due to too much STUFF (yup word of the day), we are much more organized than ever before AND the best part is I am sitting here blogging while Juan is packing up the kitchen how cool is that! (smiley face, giggle now laughing and snort)

So join us this week for the Smith’s family move…..

 

Our Last Weekend of Bicycling in AZ

Juan and I are trying to soak up our last weekend of bike riding in Arizona. The orange blossoms seem to be extra fragrant today. Juan loves this time of year and I feel he is getting something extra special where everything is in bloom.

Juan and I are so excited in this next chapter in our lives. Life is so short and we plan to try to live and enjoy every minute of it.

So today…the weather is gorgeous, very light veil of clouds and my Juan by my side…life couldn’t be any better.

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Change is Coming….

Well…a new chapter in my life will be here in the coming weeks. Juan and I are so excited about this new adventure and what new things we will discover together. I know I have posted a lot of info about “Urban Hobo (website coming REAL soon!) and it has taken me in a new direction in regards to my blogging.

I will be moving to a new blog within the week and hope you will “follow” me over to the new site. Although I am still a big believer of living simpler and “right-sizing” my life….I also wish to blog about local “Mom & Pop” haunts and great things to do locally and on a nationwide basis.

Of course I will be discussing my latest edible art creations and where Juan and I might be in the Southwest where you can visit with us and partake in some of our home baked goodies and eclectic art!

I wanted to take this time to express some of the things Juan and I have learned over the last 1 ½ years regarding… “putting what’s important in perspective“. I’ve learned that it isn’t the quantity of “Stuff” you have accumulated over the years….It’s the quantity and quality of friendships you have built. It’s not about the “status” level you’ve climbed but about the time and ability you give to others in need. It’s not about wearing a huge banner saying “Look at me and what I am doing” but about being there for others and doing whatever you can without recognition. It’s about truly finding what really matters in your life…the love of a spouse and the love and time you spend with your family and close friends. For me…“right-sizing” (I know my favorite word of the day) my life has helped me enjoy the simpler things in life and enjoy my family and friends more.

I hope that some, or even one, of my blogs have helped you in some way. I have received many emails about changes you’ve made and how much happier you are. I am so glad to always hear from you and hope to receive more input in my new blog.

Next….What I’ve learned by right-sizing My Life

 

Caramel Dipping Sauce

As I continue my quest for building my repertoire of tasty goodies….I’m happy to report a new addition!

My quest to make the perfect caramel chew. If you recall, I made several attempts and FINALLY nailed it. I was so excited. Of course Juan was too as he was busy being my ever ready taste tester.

Now…I have created a wonderful caramel dipping sauce. Delish!

It’s great to heat up (60-90 seconds) in the microwave or in a hot water bath. Or…setting up a fondue night and having the caramel sauce for dessert.

Slice up some green apples and what a tasty treat!

Next…will have some cool packaging put together soon to make this a beautiful hostess gift or thank you favor at any function.

 

A great day…

Well…I’m happy to report that I had a great “Pre-Valentine’s Event” selling our De-lish (sorry I made it up) Peanut Butter and White Chocolate Cookies on Wednesday.

People enjoyed the sampling and LOVED the bundle packs in the pretty pink and red hues. They also loved the hammered heart shaped tag with a cute sentiment such as “I Love You” or “Run Away With Me”

I was with a group of ladies and discussing the tags and personalizing them. I showed the example of the heart with the saying “Run Away With Me” and one gal said “How about just run away?” another gal piped up and said “How about drop dead?” the gals and I started laughing and I responded that I am happy to add any sentiment you’d like. Next thing I know we are creating crass poems with the start “Roses are red, violets are blue, I saw you cheating and now we’re through!”.

More chucking and giggling…however, any comments and thoughts from the customers are always appreciated.

Anyway…I received a lot of orders and excited to get started on my tags. THEN next weekend, I’ll be busy baking away.

I was able to get some corporate orders for their clients/customers. Several Realtors and and Insurance Group.

If anyone is interested in purchasing a bindle pack for your Valentine and add a heart shaped tag…I’m happy to take orders. If you are seeking corporate gifts, happy to chat too.

Shawn
Shawn@urban-hobo.com

 
 
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