Crust Gets in Your Eyes

Forced into the light by a recent murder, a transient community starts talking.

By St. John Barned-Smith
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 12 | Posted Jul. 25, 2007

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The murder of Tim Bradly was particularly shocking to Philly's anarchist punks, Mike says, because "Philadelphia isn't known for being that vicious or violent of a place. It's a nice little scene here--not like New York or San Francisco."

Mike remembers working security once at a punkfest that went bad after a crew of scumfucks showed up. After Bradly's death, in a blog post on the MySpace page of someone calling himself Oneiric Imperium, he wrote how "a group of self-proclaimed scumfucks showed up not to see any of the bands but to do what they tend to do--drink and then intimidate and fight. They were fucking arseholes, and that is what they wanted to be."

For some crusties, scumfucks and their trademark violent behavior are repellent. At the end of his MySpace posting, Mike writes, "What happens to all these people where constant violence is a way of life? Who would want this? And why? Really, what it comes down to is that I don't want to live in that world at all. I don't want to be associated with it."


Marc and Steve-O, though hardly classic examples of the scumfuck culture, are no strangers to aggression or violence.

Back outside Five Guys on Chestnut Street, Steve-O takes off his calf-length work boots, rears back and smashes a bare-footed roundhouse kick into a tree. Later he fiddles with a yellow flathead screwdriver, his protection from aggressive travelers. Marc says he sometimes carries a "smiley"--a lock attached to a chain.

Both claim they've done time. Steve-O says he spent 10 months in a D.C. jail awaiting trial for allegedly beating up a man he claims pulled a knife on him, and for assault with a deadly weapon--his shoe. And as this story went to press, he was arrested twice--once for public drunkenness and once for assaulting a cop.

Marc, meanwhile, says he has a five-year-old DUI charge and his own assault charges as well.

Marc, who hopped his first train in Cleveland when he was 15, says he isn't motivated by politics, despite the homemade anarchy symbol tattoo on his leg. He says he's for "equality for everyone," pointing to a lowercase "e" encircled in black ink on one of his knuckles.

Though his companion isn't with him at the moment, Marc often travels with his dog "Wendy-O," whom he shares with another hobo who's now in Pittsburgh.


Marc says he left Philadelphia two days before Bradly died. He'd been hanging with Montana Bill, a sometime hopper with a tattoo the shape of Montana on his face. The two drank a half-gallon of whiskey, and wandered through West Philadelphia to various squats looking for people to get even drunker with. Rebuffed, they stumbled over to Paradise City, the squat at 49th and Locust.

Someone produced another bottle--vodka--and Montana Bill and Marc continued drinking on the building's roof.

Marc left the next day. In New York a few days later, he learned that Tim Bradly was dead, and Montana Bill was in intensive care.

Ward and McCarthy were caught in Franklin, Pa., a city about 85 miles northeast of Pittsburgh, and booked in a Philadelphia police station on Fri., July 13.

Police Capt. Mike Costello says Bradly had been partying with a friend who passed out. When his friend woke up the next morning, he found Bradly's body and called the police.

The police say Bradly hadn't been using drugs, and that the gun he'd been seen carrying was plastic, and not capable of firing.

The arrests might have saved the accused couple's lives. Asked about Bradly's death and the fate of his murderers, Marc grows quiet.

"Someone's gonna kill them," he says, referring to Ward and McCarthy. "They fucked up real bad."

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COMMENTS

Comments 1 - 12 of 12
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1. jp said... on Jul 18, 2008 at 11:20PM

“crustieshoppON”

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2. wraith said... on Aug 28, 2008 at 10:41AM

“do you have any picks of kids known as....lost,wraith,or horace?”

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3. sour pickles said... on Sep 25, 2008 at 08:23AM

“this is the worst article i have ever read. not only is it poorly written , and terribly researched, but it fails to take into account more than two individuals perspective on how they live and the subculture they claim to be a part of . to not include the viewpoints of numerous subjects, and allowing the journalist to make such obviously generic statements regarding an entire subculture and way of life, shows extreme lack of integrity .thanks for nothing, but a sensationalized piece of trash that only seeks to cash in on tragic events.”

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4. shannon said... on Nov 11, 2008 at 08:38PM

“hahahahaha blow job”

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5. me said... on Dec 1, 2008 at 02:58AM

“More than half of your glossary is totally or partially wrong. Don't add something you're not confident about just to give your readers a spiffy decoder ring in a cereal box. Most of the folks interviewed probably could have defined those terms instead of you guessing at them, incorrectly.”

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6. Otter said... on Dec 5, 2008 at 06:23PM

“>> FTRA Freight Train Riders of america >> Homebums Hobos' terms for not just squatters, but people who spend a long time in one place. the older ones sometimes call themselves "homeguards", such as in AZ. >> Spider/Kill shwill Backwashed dregs of ANY beer.”

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7. upthepups said... on Dec 21, 2008 at 07:07PM

“this is one of the worst articals i have read. i think ol' pickles summed it up pretty much. ”

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8. Nope. said... on Dec 22, 2008 at 02:24PM

“Let's just marginalize another group of people we don't know and consider ourselves worldly. It takes all kinds and reading this doesn't mean you know anything. I am particularly fond of the bit about facial tattoos. Also who doesn't call it a space bag? ”

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9. ?? said... on Jan 12, 2009 at 12:08PM

“RIP - Tim. Your killers pleaded Guilty. Tim was a Hockey Champion and a teammate of mine. My brother is also a crusty and hope he does not meet the same fate as Tim. ”

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10. jz said... on Jan 12, 2009 at 01:09PM

“anyone know where marc is”

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11. your worst nightmare said... on Jan 29, 2009 at 11:13PM

“UM..... WHAT? are you fucking serious? you have no idea what the fuck you are talking about and the fact that you would put it on the fucking internet on some bullshit site like this is fucking retarded. way to call everybody who does this for real out. Are you too much of a pussy to call this shit on the spot? You shouldn't write a check that your ass can't cash. bitch. Have you ever met a SF Scumfuck? what goddamn planet are you from? Where do you get your info? you need to check your shit.”

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12. Anonymous said... on Jul 31, 2010 at 11:40PM

“hahaha, humm, well, i guess their equal cuz tim was tryin to rape echo, her face blooded by him, whem conor woke up, so i think it was very fuckin justified. rapos have no fucking right to live, im not sorry if im to blunt because thats the truth. Conor is not a normally violent person, i should know, i lived in a bathroom with him for 15 months, he was my cellie up state. He is the contrary, very giving and forgiving so dont talk shit just cuz u can, nobodys doin shit cuz its all talk...”

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