Copycat tree

I ran into these guys on San Jose between 23rd and 24th, filming local character Omer Travers talking about his favorite tree and playing some original songs. According to Omer, this tree — which he often sits in front of — mimics his dance moves in the wind and must be a “bonsai maple” because of its tiny leaves. What will become of this documentary project is yet to be determined, but stay tuned, and we may find out.

23 Responses to “Copycat tree”

  1. reality says:

    Living in the Mission for years, I thought Omer was just a harmless homeless guy who couldn’t carry a tune to save his life, but I’ve seen him many, many times in recent years screaming really dumb stuff at people at all hours, spitting mad, off his nut. The guy needs help and meds, not a fucking documentary.

    • Actually, the two halves of your first sentence are in perfect harmony. One follows from the previous. There is no relief from your second sentence, thanks to the evisceration of mental health care accomplished by California Governor Ronald Reagan.

  2. Beth says:

    You wouldn’t think this was cute if you lived at San Jose and 23rd and try to walk your dogs at night and Omer Travers emerges from the darkness and challenges them to a duel.

    Guy needs meds and needs to not play guitar like Animal from the fucking Muppets at 2am on a weeknight in front of my house.

  3. Lola says:

    Once, while sitting in my car waiting for a friend, he ‘held me up’ with his guitar neck at my drivers seat car window. For a split second, I really did think I was being held up. It was horrifying and I bitched him out. Dude needs serious help. Thinking he’s funny is ridic.

  4. Your Sad Existence says:

    “He really does ruin an otherwise blossoming neighborhood.”

    I think the gentrification of the neighborhood by white money doesn’t count as blossoming as more as bought out. I’d say people that want to live in a pristine neighborhood that’s “safe” need to gtfo and go to another neighborhood. If you want to sweep social problems and “undesirables” under the rug and pretend they don’t exist, then you can be just like who you are pretend not to be. Move if you don’t like it. I’m sure there are quite a few people in the neighborhood who would enjoy your exit.

  5. Nozer says:

    The filming is not a documentary but his video submission to America’s got talent. I’m not joking.

  6. justanotherhipster says:

    Here’s a bit of local lore: among some Mission residents, Omer is known by the rather fitting moniker “Bum Jovi”.

  7. tacotron says:

    Bum jovi, he is. I’m still wondering who keeps twisting the heads off of pidgeons

  8. Herr Doktor Professor Deth Vegetable says:

    Have you guys seen his Yelp page?

  9. mad skillz says:

    Dude was arrested for breaking into yoko ono’s NYC apt in the 86. he left her a pic of himself with his info on the back.

    i cant imagine too many people from the downtown scene that isnt fuckin mad 30 years later

  10. I have know Omer for 25 years. Once I went on a road trip with Omer to Nevada hoping to catch his act on film. We were arguing and Omer wanted out of the car in the desert.

    That night it snowed and got pretty cold,so I went out looking for Omer next morning. Down the dirt road come a pick-up with howling Indians and drunken cowboys and Omer. Out in the desert Omer had came on a camp where they were de-balling the cattle. That night they had a Rocky Mountain Oyster Feast at Ruby Mountain Brewery.

    Elko County, Nevada still talks about that party and wanted him back. They loved Omer’s singing Johnny Cash’s “Light My Fire”. Omer is still the talk of the county and they ask me to bring him back for years.

    We made it to Oregon where I introduced Omer as my wife from San Francisco. My old Mom did not know what to think. Actually, Omer is a straight Christian man and I was just joking.

    Omer went out to my Mom’s front yard to smoke hand-rolled cigarettes embarrassing my Mom, who was worried about what the neighbors would think.

    Omer ate most of our breakfast for 4 people before we could get to it, including about a pound of bacon and all the scrambled eggs.

    The high-light of this trip was a triple rainbow at Mount Shasta.

    Back in San Francisco, I dumped Omer off on Van Ness Avenue where he was living in an empty lot under some concrete blocks.

    Took me hours to clean the car of cigarette butts,beer cans and wine bottles out of the rental car.

    I filmed this trip and someday when I learn to edit, or meet some who can edit video, this road-trip will make a good film. Sorry I missed the brewery party with Omer singing as it would have been good.

    Omer’s guitar playing and art has become magical surreal and he is going to be great given the time.