Friday, September 28, 2012

"GO LIVE WITH YOUR GRANDMOTHER!!!" Humiliating Foreclosure Can Happen To Anybody, Oh Yes, Even Jim Watkins The Anti-Johnny Blogger, Here Is The Story In His Own Words Not Published Until This Moment, PART ONE OF "THE EVIL ANTI-JOHNNY BOOK OF REVELATIONS"

Photo and blog post by John Hoff, writing from a cheap hotel somewhere in Texas. The stars at night are big and bright 
(clap clap clap clap) DEEP IN THE HEART OF TEXAS

Like having an icky squashed camel spider on the sole of your army boot, the evil Anti-Johnny blogger Jim Watkins is a minor but annoying part of my colorful and rather high-profile existence. Most times I just ignore his rantings, ravings and vile spewings as the price of a kind of intensely local fame that I myself am responsible for, after all. Mostly, I disregard his comments (some quite scary) that come to my blog on a frequent basis (more than half of which I don't publish) some of which are definitely from Jim, and some I merely SUSPECT are from Jim.

For those who don't know, Jim's freaky obsession with this blogger started because of my writings about the TJ Waconia fraud which severely impacted North Minneapolis right about the time I arrived on the neighborhood scene. Indeed, The Adventures of Johnny Northside has a kind of creation legend which is intimately entwined with the spectacular downfall of TJ Waconia.

Early in 2008, when I was doing research on buying a piece of property in North Minneapolis, I became fascinated with the TJ Waconia fraud case. I began...

...researching stuff. In a short while I realized I had some relatively minor, but interesting information that wasn't conveniently available on the internet about the scandal. I began writing this stuff in comments on Behind The Mortgage Dot Com. It was almost out of a sense of citizenship. Here was a high profile scandal and I had picked up some nuggets of info. It was almost like my DUTY to make sure that info became easily available on the internet.

It was there on Behind The Mortgage that a guy named Jim Watkins began to participate in the online discussion, vehemently defending his friend Thomas Balko (and to a lesser extent the other criminal, Jon Helgason) of TJ Waconia.  I like to say "the chat thread grew so hot it began to radiate a strange and unearthly energy, transforming me into Johnny Northside, whose powers to fight evil through blogging are directed at evil doers in North Minneapolis."

However, at the same time, the radiation from the "hot thread" created my cartoon nemesis. The evil Anti-Johnny. He's so plodding and uncreative that he didn't even pick his own NAME. I mean, that name was given to Jim Watkins BY ME.

Imagine if Batman had to tell somebody, "Well, you kid around a lot. Joker. Why don't you try calling yourself The Joker?"

There was a time when Jim Watkins and myself could almost be friendly, to "agree to disagree" and sit down and break bread or at least pizza crust together. That's when the photo was taken, above, of Jim holding my cool book about dumpster diving with glossy and professionally designed  cover art, produced by a professional publisher and, well, um, Jim's special little booklet he put together all by  himself, yay, clap clap clap. 

When one of my friends looked at the graphics in Jim's book he asked, quite seriously, "Was this put together in the 80s?"

Jim styles himself a teacher of real estate, with a focus on buying abandoned property in Texas. Though Watkins grew up in New Brighton, Minnesota I've heard him spew at length about how much he dislikes Minnesota and really prefers Texas. I can understand feeling that way about NORTH DAKOTA, but, well, whatever.

The guy doesn't care for his own home state where he grew up and that's just sad. I understand Jim was suspended his junior year of high school for unauthorized candy sales but, really, time to LET GO OF ALL THAT ANGER. (That's not parody. This actually happened in 1988, and was the subject of a newspaper story. I may as well mention I was suspended my freshman year of high school for a water bomb incident involving a vice principal, but do I hate my home state? No, I love Minnesota. Except for the winter. One day I will be a snow bird. Now watch Jim get all unnaturally excited on his creepy blog and claim, once again, that I won't stay in North Minneapolis where I have vowed to live and die while turning our neighborhood around)

But returning to that strange, happy era when I could share pizza with Jim while he was using some kind of weird pen that secretly tapes, and I was all, like, why is there a little light glowing on your pen?

It was March of 2008 when Jim, who was writing for a real estate investment blog called Bigger Pockets Dot Com, sent me an email with the following preamble.

Hi John,

I decided to tell you about what is currently going on with me in my day to day life in Dallas. It has been a gut wrenching few months for me and I decided to swallow my pride and let you in on my situation in hopes that you may have some insight or advice for me. I know you are not well versed in real estate and even less with Texas real estate but, you have proven to be a person that can really shake big things up when you want to. I don't know if my situation warrants some shaking up as you have done in the past but.... My situation is bothersome and several people stand to lose if I don't do something soon.

I am pasting the attachment in this email in case you are not able to download where you are at.....

Thanks John


Included in the email was a story Jim apparently intended to publish on Bigger Pockets, where he'd written a number of articles resting upon his "expertise" with real estate. As I read the story, I thought to myself, "Why would Jim publish this? This could be quite damaging to his career as a real estate teacher. The story--

Well, hey. Judge for yourself. Here's what he wrote, word for word.

Foreclosure Can Happen to Anyone
The current real estate foreclosure market has hit close to home. In fact, it has hit… My home.
I currently have two houses posted for the March 4th foreclosure sale. One of the houses is my current home. My real estate career has focused on foreclosures and the owners that go through it. There is an unspoken rule that people who teach about the subject, are not supposed to experience foreclosure themselves.
This is what happened and what the current status is…
I bought a house in Mesquite to rehab and sell in March, 2007.  With the rehab nearly complete, a second house was bought in Carrolltonin June, 2007. The Mesquite house was put on MLS in the end of July for $128,000. That time frame was the start of the subprime meltdown. The result was the house only had two showings during the six month listing. At the time of the listing, the sold houses in the area had an average Days On Market of 45 days. I budgeted for 90 days.
Both houses were financed by Hard Money Lender, Jack Hodge.
The holding costs for each house is roughly $1,000 a month.

Had the Mesquite house sold within the first 60 days, I would have profited up to $15,000. Because it didn’t sell, not only did I not get the profits out of it but, my holding costs doubled.
With business having been slow most of the year to begin with, keeping up with double holding costs didn’t last long.

In other words… I fell behind. To make matters worse, classes, speaking engagements, open houses, the Investors Group of Texas and other income producing events, all fell short of expectations.
Telling the lender I expected to bring the loans current or make a substantial payment several times, only to be let down by low turn-outs and canceled classes, was a very difficult thing to do. He requested that I update him by phone even if all I had to say was, “I have nothing new I can tell you.”

That sounds reasonable enough but, I found it humiliating after expecting to make a payment and then having to come up with an explanation to the lender (Jack Hodge) as to why the payment would not be made.
I teach on this subject and I can’t tell you how intimidating it is to have to face.
All the while, I was trying everything I could think of to find a buyer for the Mesquite house. I advertised constantly on local websites and tried to get a buyer by doing owner finance. Nothing.

At one point in December, I had a buyer set to buy the Carrollton house by owner finance but they backed out at the last minute.
Finally, the two houses were posted for foreclosure. Knowing the foreclosure process as well as I do, I put nearly everything aside so I could focus on getting the Mesquite house sold and reinstate the Carrollton house, where I live.

When it became apparent that I would not get a buyer in time to save the house, I contacted the second lien holder, who had financed the rehab and was now at risk of being wiped out if the house made it to the auction
He was understanding of the situation and after we discussed options, he decided that he would buy out the hard money lender and pay himself back by obtaining a new mortgage. To my surprise, he didn’t think it was right for me to not get anything from all the work I had put into the house and told me he would Quit Claim Deed ½ of the ownership back to me after he bought it. He decided he would rent the house to me for the next year and we would then try to sell the house after the market recovered. The only thing I needed to do at that point was find a buyer for the Carrollton house.
Four days before the auction (February), the second lien holder called and told me that he had thought about the situation further and decided that he was not going to buy the house after all. What stunned me even more was the fact that he understood and accepted the chances that he could lose his $20,000 + investment. He did not blame me and said he felt the market was to blame and he understood it was an investment that came with risk.
When I bought the house and we talked about him financing the rehab, I never considered his losing his investment as an option. After he told me he was not going to buy the house, seeing to it that he would not lose his investment became my driving force. He agreed to release the lien for the rehab which allowed me a lot of flexibility. I came up with the following plan where no one would lose.
  • Lower the asking price from $128,000 down to $100,000.
  • That would give a buyer 20% equity and it would be attractive for an investor looking for a rental property that would cash flow $200 to $300.
  • It would also be ideal for someone looking for a great deal on a house for themselves to live in. 
  • With a sales price of $100,000, it would allow me to clear $10,000 profit, which would be used to reinstate the loan on the Carrolltonhouse.
  • Once the Carrollton house is reinstated, I would Quit Claim Deed ½ of the ownership to the 2nd lien holder from the Mesquitehouse.
  • That would allow the 2nd lien holder to secure and recover his investment after the Carrollton house was finished and sold after the market recovers.
  • The end result would be: The lender is paid off on one house and the other reinstated. The 2nd lien holder on the Mesquite house would not lose his investment. My holding costs would be cut in half, I would pay off one of the two loans and I would sleep better knowing that no one lost their investment.
In order for that plan to work I would need… Time.

It turns out the legal description on one of the foreclosure notices was incorrect.  
I was able to get the foreclosure pushed back a month because of it. The lender agreed to postpone the foreclosure on the other house in hopes that a buyer would be found before the next foreclosure sale.
I found a buyer!
A long time mentoring student recognized it as a perfect rental property and wanted to buy it. I got them hooked up with Chuck Sykes(investment mortgage specialist) and we proceeded towards closing.

With exactly one week remaining before the foreclosure auction, the deal fell apart when the buyer was not able to secure the financing.
For the past four days, I have been doing everything I can think of to find the solution to this problem. So far, I have been able to protect my identity from the public in connection to the two foreclosure postings. I knew what kind of an impact that information could have on my career and reputation.

This morning (Saturday) I spoke with the lender, Jack Hodge and requested to meet with him in person. He declined to meet with me in person.
His attorney (and acting trustee) was required to notify me of the foreclosures by mail no later than 21 days before the next foreclosure auction. Notice for both houses was sent to the Mesquite address but the trustee sent them to the wrong address. The actual address is:1717 Golden Grove Dr. and the trustee sent them to: 1707 Golden Grove Dr.
The post office marked both envelopes and wrote the correct address on them. The postmark on both envelopes shows February the 14th. That is 19 days before the auction and legally, both postings are not valid and need to be reposted for the following foreclosure period. I will be scanning those documents later tonight and will post them online so anyone can see them.
I have considered how I may look by contesting the validity of the foreclosure postings as I have. I can see how it might make me appear to be “reaching” or just “delaying the inevitable.” I have two responses to that.

1) I have a house that is discounted significantly and has been averaging 2 showings a day since it was re-listed on MLS two weeks ago. The proceeds would be enough to pay off the one house and reinstate the other.

2) As I would expect, I am being held accountable for the two loans that I was given to buy these two houses. I think it is fair for me to hold the lender/trustee accountable for inaccuracies and errors made concerning the foreclosure process.
I have also learned that the lender, Jack Hodge, is not licensed in the State of Texas as a Private Mortgage Lender. Any person or business that issues five or more loans per year, totaling over $1 Million dollars, is required to be licensed.

I understand that two “wrongs” do not make a “right.” In my case however, I want everyone to be aware that my intention is to make my part in this situation…Right. Getting a buyer for the Mesquite house and having it close, which in turn would reinstate the Carrollton house and allow the 2nd lien holder to recoup his investment… Would make my part in the situation… Right.
Lastly, losing both houses would not only jeopardize my career but would also result in a very uncertain status on a personal level. Mainly, where would I live and where would I store the contents of the two houses?

If the lender forecloses, he will own one house, fully updated and rehabbed for less than $0.70 on the dollar. The other house is about halfway completed and he would own it for about $0.70 on the dollar. He is also aware that the 2nd lien holder would be wiped out as well. All past due interest payments would be paid in addition to one of the loans being paid in full if I was allowed to continue my efforts to sell. That is in addition to the $19,000+ the lender profited from the loan I had with him in 2006 on a house I bought, rehabbed and sold. 
If I am able to avoid the foreclosures and get the buyer that I feel is close by, no one would lose. In fact, in the end everyone would win.

If I lose either or both houses, the lender wins. The same lender that always stated, “I don’t want your house.”
When I posed the question to Jack Hodge this morning of where would I live if he forecloses on both houses, he replied by saying, “Go live with your Grandmother.”
Size of the font in that last remark not in original draft by Jim Watkins.

In response to Jim's email, I talked to Jim on the phone and told him he shouldn't publish this article because it would damage his reputation as a competent teacher on the subject of real estate; a reputation he'd labored long and hard to build and, indeed, his teaching efforts were like a second career. The "Go live with your Grandmother" quote, in particular, seemed like pointless public self-injury. At the time, I was a teaching assistant in Journalism and I'd just recently watched the "ultimate movie about teachers" which is Mr. Holland's Opus. Knowing well the flaws and well-intentioned humanity of teachers, I wanted to help Jim TEACHER TO TEACHER by giving him good advice.

Don't. Publish. This. Confession.

Of course, at some level I thought maybe it would be better for Jim to just go public with the story. Better for the public, that is to say, than for Jim. But what was the point of going public with such an intimate confession of his failures after writing so many articles about his expertise? I think I even told Jim it would be better to publish such an article AFTER the real estate market turned around and he'd completely recovered. Then he could go back and tell students, "Woo hoo, let me tell you about that real estate market back in 2008 and what it did to ME."

It was well-intentioned advice. Jim didn't publish the article. And, indeed, the article was not the complete story of what ultimately happened (or is alleged to have happened) with the house. In fact, here's what Jim wrote about the situation just recently in response to this very article while it was still in the "POST IN PROGRESS" stage.

Anyway, in 2007 one of the houses I rehabbed I had to let go into foreclosure due to the market starting to crumble. I had sent him an email when I was pretty depressed about it and that is what John is intending to publish on his blog.
What John has been told is that the house was posted for foreclosure BUT, the house did not go to the courthouse sale. Meaning, I found a buyer and sold it before it was foreclosed.
Lets see what he writes about it now... Shall we?
September 29, 2012 12:21 AM

Fair enough. Jim's explanation in his own words.

Here's more of what Jim had to say recently about his real estate career.

It is no secret I am no longer active in the real estate investment world largely due to the real estate collapse.

However, after the fiasco with his house, Jim tried to pass himself off as (good lord) a "foreclosure expert."

Here's YouTube video of Jim's next incarnation after "Go live with your grandmother," proudly posted by Jim himself. It has been said of Jim that he "fakes it until he makes it." (ADDENDUM, October 2: Jim points out the story was produced in 2006. However, it was posted to YouTube May 2, 2009. Given the date it was uploaded, it appears to be part of an attempt by Jim to cast himself as a "foreclosure expert" following the meltdown of his real estate career)

And somewhere along the way, he became the "Evil Anti-Johnny" blogger, a sort of cartoon nemesis to Johnny Northside.

Obviously, a lot of hurts and personal failures had accumulated by that time. Jim's self-described "best friend" and former business associate Thomas Balko sentenced to prison; and not for a short time, either, like some of the OTHER fraudsters who had an impact on North Minneapolis. (Tynessia Snoddy and her short little sentence comes to mind) His own real estate teaching career another burst bubble. And in 2010, when I asked "Bigger Pockets" if Jim was still writing for them, here's the reply I received.

Joshua Dorkin May 29, 2010 at 5:09 pm
John – Jim stopped writing for us back in 2008. I’m not aware of what he is doing lately – it has been a long while since I heard from him. That said, you can get a list of our regular contributors by checking the right sidebar of this blog 

And apparently the "foreclosure expert" path wasn't lucrative enough to continue, perhaps because our country is saturated with such recent "experts." (By the same standard, we might all consider in what areas of life we are experts. Oh, I'm an expert on CHILD SUPPORT. I'm also an expert on buying crappy cars and keeping them running for longer than anybody predicted. Recently, I developed expertise in the buying of used tires)

So what is Jim doing NOW? Did he really go to live with his grandmother? Inquiring minds want to know in NoMi.

But there are more pressing issues in my neighborhood to write about at the moment. Yes, it's tempting to write about Jim Watkins and enjoy the delicious irony of the fact I happen to be in Dallas this very moment.  (I am an expert on Dallas/Fort Worth! Just call me your "DFW Mentor.")

But unlike Watkins, whose blogging efforts are devoted to trashing one guy trying to improve a rapidly revitalizing neighborhood, I have bigger fish to fry. 


Johnny Northside! said...

Not even waiting for this post in progress to be finished, Jim Watkins the evil anti-Johnny posts the following.
Well looks like you are pulling out all the stops, huh? lol Well I have told you a few times to go ahead and publish it if it makes you feel superior. Just keep in mind that before you accuse me about the foreclosure... You should at least consult w Jeff so you know all the possible outcomes once a house has been posted for foreclosure. So... Just be sure you only blog the truth, John. Cuz if you lie, well you 1) have nothing left on me and 2) I will see that your first amendment attack is remembered.

To which I respond:

Be sure to capitalize First Amendment. Also, you say (F)irst (A)mendment attack like that's somehow a BAD thing? I was talking to a lawyer a couple days ago who was mystified by the way you keep throwing the phrase "First Amendment retaliate" around like it's some kind of gotcha that I used the phrase.

But anyway...

It's not hard to stick to the truth when it mostly involves copying and pasting what somebody said in an email.

While I have you on the line, could you tell me if you have any connection with a company called Plano C34 and some other companies with similar names? Is that the same Jim Watkins as you? The guy who "thrusts himself to the forefront" of issues surrounding real estate investment?

And, if you know, how are those companies doing at the moment?

Johnny Northside! said...

Oh, make that Plano C34 LLC.

My bad. I left off the LLC.

Johnny Northside! said...

The following from Jim, the URL to his creepy Johnny Northside anti-fan blog not included.


Go for it, John. I am amazed at the onslaught you are attempting because, well.... I don't need to say anything because, this display only proves the point that you are a vindictive stalker who will screw himself just to spite someone. Oh I get it... You are pissed because you missed a shot at the national news. BTW... what ever happened with the massive media attention you were getting w the appeal? Lastly, Is email private? Doesnt matter since you do what you want. Oh almost forgot... I am in Plano. Want the address? Why do you want it? You simply never learn from your mistakes. How sad when you have a law degree but, you drive a truck! And my apologies to truck drivers for comparing your profession with John.


To which I reply:

What do you mean is email private? Do you mean you want to talk by email? What ever would stop you? I mean, I get taunting text messages from you on my fucking cell phone so what would stop you from EMAILING me, Jim?

I think there was a question left hanging in the air about Plano C34 LLC, Plano C37 LLC, etc.

How shall I put this? You do NOT seem UNFAMILIAR with the corporate entities I'm referencing. I'm curious. Really curious. But the Texas Secretary of State's website was so inconvenient and I just happened to find myself...

Well, anyway. If you're going to email me what on earth would stop you? Not the creepiness factor, that's for sure. I certainly don't have an entire blog dedicated to YOU.

So, little monkey, if you want to email the BIG monkey you just let your monkey fingers do the typing, ook ook ook.

Anonymous said...

It sounds personal.

Anonymous said...

When you look at a foreclosure action, you probably already know this, is it the first position or a junior position that is foreclosing. There is much room for mischief, in terms of scrubbing junior liens, etc.

Say, and this is a hypothetical since I don't know any actual facts concerning Jim Watkins, but say he has a home with a first mortgage, a second of some kind, and a few mechanics liens. He could, with a willing first position refinance if the mortgage debt exceeds the property value, but that would leave the junior encumbrances in place.

He could, in this hypothetical, again with a willing lender in the first position, allow a foreclosure and buy at the foreclosure sale for a pre-negotiated price, perhaps using a shell LLC entity, and get Foreclosure title while awaiting the junior lienholders to act or not during the redemption period.

Details of how that game would be played in Minnesota depend on local law, which I do not know, but it has been played in other states. Scrubbing junior liens is only one reason to go a foreclosure route.

Sometimes foreclosure title can indirectly impact boundary line disputes and adverse possession situations, via legal descriptions and such.

A foreclosure title w/o actual notice of an unrecorded easement can render that easement null against a new bona fide purchaser without notice.

I am aware of one instance from another state of litigation where a plaintiff as part of a judicial settlement had the Court rewrite the metes and bounds legal description of a property, using two monuments, say one from the west and one from the east, which gained a surveyor's hair of property because earlier metes and bounds went from one monument or the other, with the sum of recorded distances being less than the actual distance between the two monuments (the definition of a surveyor's hair). While that is not binding on persons not party to the suit, it puts the new description of record, and after 15 years the neighbors lose right to object by adverse possession.

If there is a property unoccupied, and with a messy title history, and I give you a quit claim deed, while not owning any interest but the deed says it is to you and you record it, with passage of time, how are you situated to claim a right to sell the thing if you paid taxes of record, etc., indicia of ownership, in the intervening time? Put that one into a Bar Exam question.

So, in summary, what position is being foreclosed, what liens and interests are junior to it, and whether it is a judicial or nonjudicial foreclosure, if known in any actual instance, can be informative.

Who the foreclosing lienholder is can be informative.

US Bank, vs Local Beneficial We Don't Run Credit Checks But Our Rates Exceed Prime, whatever the name, can matter. A person and not an institution holding the foreclosing position?

A really shabby thing would be one person holding title in one name, say LLC_1, and an encumbrance bought from an original mortgagor via LLC_2, with both owned and one foreclosing the other. What others don't know ...

So, look for the nuances. And remember, I am not saying your acquaintance Watkins would be doing any of this. It is a hypothetical. I have no dog in the hunt between you and anti-johnny.

But it is a story, and stories are what help us learn new things.

Johnny Northside! said...

To Anonymous at 8:46 AM, honestly, everything you said just made my eyes glaze over. But I found as I made an effort to read it over and over, seeking understanding, it was actually kind of fascinating.

My question becomes...

Who gives you the original quit claim deed? Does that person have any color of title in the first place? I assume the result could go differently depending on how strong the original quit claim deed was in terms of how much title it conveyed?

As I learned in Property Law, I could give you a quit claim deed to the World Trade Center. (That was the actual example in the textbook which pre-dated 9/11) But I have no color of title in the first place. And yet there's nothing ILLEGAL about me selling you, perhaps for nominal consideration, any property interest I MIGHT own, as long as I didn't actually DECEIVE you or it was full of "buyer beware" caveats.

I mean, if one pays taxes and so forth, is there a way to roll a quit claim deed that actually conveyed NO INTEREST WHATSOEVER into some kind of colorable title? Hmmmm.

Now the eyes of OTHER readers are glazing over.

Johnny Northside! said...

Here's what I'm publishing of one anonymous comment....
Foreclosure can happen to good people. John's good buddy Jeff Skrenes had a house go into foreclosure. Jeff and..

Oops, that's all I'm publishing.

Johnny Northside! said...

Here's a comment received from the evil Anti-Johnny, reprinted in its entirety EXCEPT I won't include his URL.

Goes to show you how you see things that aren't there about the email thing. But, no I don't care to email you.

Taunting text messages from me? Oh do tell! Maybe you could claim you get them at all hours of the night again? If those were true why don't you go ahead and publish the proof to support your false claim?

Ah there WAS a question left hanging, wasn't there? Well my answer is... I am not going to answer anything to you. After all, you never did return that courtesy in the past so... Go all Columbo and spend your own time figuring it out. Its not like you would be fair with what I told you. No, I would be pretty dumb to give you any answers that you would only attempt to use against me. Sorry!

As for you not having an entire blog dedicated to me? That is a lie. You and Megan are the ones who made the anti johnny-jordan hawkman blog. That was simple to figure out because, you have a knack of repeating things that you are told in confidence and there simply are no other people who would have any knowledge of some of what is on that blog.
Monkey, huh? Here is a question for you...

How many respected, professional journalists do you know of who actually call people names in their writings? Good Lord, GERALDO doesn't even call people names! On that note, I will opt to not engage you in your mental "king of the blog-hill" game.
It is interesting that you refer to yourself as an 800 pound gorilla. I remember when I was a kid I went to the old Como Zoo. The Gorillas when they were on the indoor part of their cages, used to pick up their own "waste" and hurl it at spectators who got close enough. I say interesting because, real gorillas toss their sh*t at people from their cage and you do the same....Only you do it online.

To which I reply: So when I look up what little there is online about those corporations called Plano C34 LLC, and Plano C37 LLC, the Jim Watkins of Plano, Texas who is listed as more or less the MAIN DUDE with those corporations is the same as YOU? Is that correct?

Those are some interesting corporations. Interesting in how little is fleshed out online but just enough to sort of draw me in and want to ask questions, even look up documents in hard copy form (Austin, Texas?) that can't be found online.

Can you help me understand what's happening with those corporations? What it is they even DO? And then some other names come up with the corporations. Who are those folks? What do THEY do? Most fascinating of all; do these corporations have interests in REAL PROPERTY like, oh, I could think of a good example of a corporate entity that had an interest in real property, an example we both know well.

Oh, in regard to the anti-anti-Johnny and anti-Jordan Hawkman blog that you are referencing, did you mean the defunct Area Hawkman blog?

If so, I specifically deny that I was the author of that blog or ever contributed to that blog. I mean, that blog seems to have been taken down. Well, Jim, when did you know me to EVER go back and take down or erase my expressive words? That's just something I don't do. I live in my words.

Johnny Northside! said...


At night I sleep but my words are walking the earth like a powerful spirit, moving things. During the day I am doing whatever it is I am doing--looking up documents or whatever--but my words are like another part of me, split off from myself, walking the earth and moving things. When I depart from this earth my words will be here long after I am gone; still living, still moving things. In a way, my words are more myself than the flesh and blood John Hoff a/k/a Johnny Northside.

My body and brain is a container and a catalyst for words. The words are who I actually am.

That's how you know I didn't author that Area Hawkman blog, the one "dedicated" to writing about the anti-Johnny and the Jordan Hawkman. You know it's not me because I don't delete my words. Indeed, I am dedicated to putting more of my words out in the universe. That's my M.O.

It's practically a path to immortality. You've dabbled crudely in authorship, Jim, I would think you can feel what I'm saying.

Funny though, the Jordan Hawkman blog hasn't been operational since, oh my word, March of this year. I guess Paul Koenig, who Jeff Skrenes stated was "believed to be the primary contributor"to the Jordan Hawkman blog" has so many irons in the fire right now with his bankruptcy proceeding going oh so badly.

I have to wonder, geez, why doesn't he just delete that lame and dormant Jordan Hawkman blog which pissed off so many people? But maybe he feels the same way about words that I do. Even if something is not ACTIVE, the words are still OUT THERE, like acorns that might grow into oak trees once winter passes.

Well, that was quite a pontification, Jim.

Where was I?

Oh, yes, I was just FASCINATED with some corporate entities with (as one other guy looking into it once said) "names like airplanes, it's odd."

My highly-evolved yet ultimately simian brain was trying to comprehend, my wheels turning, turning, turning, synapses firing, monkey see, monkey do, monkey try to understand, monkey try to get to bottom of interesting questions.

Anonymous said...

Re: 1:48PM - If you have a defective quit claim, from someone not in chain of title when executing and delivering; and you maintain possession and pay taxes as notorious indicia of ownership and to avoid a tax foreclosure; MS Sect. 541.023 gives the forty year rule, where you own it if ... Now, what if it is Torrens property? Definite Bar Exam grist.

If you use Google Scholar, Minn. Cases, and search = 541.023, "quit claim" and "stray deed" you get one case returned, Weber v. Eisentrager, 490 NW 2d 131 (Minn.App. 1992), cf. Lindberg v. Fasching, 667 NW 2d 481 (Minn.App. 2003). It is a thicket, but the Marketable Title Act, the forty year rule, is all for a good end. Quieting title.

But what about Torrens ...

Anonymous said...

anon 1:46PM - on the LLC_1 and LLC_2 hypothetical there would be an equitable merger of title holding if the court caught wind of such cuteness, but if not ... snakes that dodge a lawnmower stay alive.

Anonymous said...

I'm going to start an entire blog series, each called ... Squawkman; and add to confusion. Do you know where I can gleep color-changing panther eyes for a logo? I know I saw that motif somewhere ...

Anonymous said...

I did a search at, Jim Watkins, and sorry to say your questions are not answered there either. A google site specific to same thing no new stuff. The mainstream media are letting us down. The mirror did not even have any Moore v. Hoff update subsequent to coverage of the motion for judgment as a matter of law, at trial court level. If the mirror does not reflect it, it cannot be news?

Johnny Northside! said...

To the poster who brought up the whole LLC thing, the foreclosure action, etc.

OK, riddle me this. How is it relevant to this conversation or to something connected with this conversation? Monkey not comprehend. Explain to monkey.

Anonymous said...

QUIT CLAIM DEED? Really? I have never been in law school but, using a quit claim deed is hardly ever used these days. It is more for transferring a percentage of the title versus signing over 100% ownership. In which case, a warranty deed is the standard in this day and age.

Anonymous said...

I googled anti-johnny jordan hawkman blog and all that came up was the jordan hawkman blog that you talked about. Then I replaced anti-johnny with jim watkins and the first hit was for this blog.
I wonder if that is the one he meant (the a-johnny). it didnt have a lot to it but it had to been written by a person that knows the guy.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know how old the anti johnny is? I did a google for plano c34 and one of the links for listed his age at 34. I thought the antijohnny was older? im thinking maybe that you could be sniffing up the wrong tree john.

Johnny Northside! said...

To the poster at 5:02, I think you'd be surprised how often quit claim deeds are used in extremely low end property transfers, especially out in rural areas and in cities with real loose regulation; think of Dixie Land and the great Southwest.

I get the feeling when you say "hardly ever" what you mean is "hardly ever in the middle class Minnesota metropolitan existence with which I am familiar" and you are excluding the way people live in rural areas, in small cities in other parts of the country, and some real low end stuff even in our own city. There comes a point where property is so low-end that it's not WORTH doing title transfers in the usual way with title insurance, title search, etc. You just fill out a paper with the proper, unambiguous "granting" language, have it notarized and (if you bother with this nice final step) file it at the court house.

And like a friend of mine often said; filing costs money. Why file it before you're ready to resell the property?

Think of it like cars. Most times, cars can only be transferred with a title. But does that happen on the low end of our economy? No. You can give somebody a car and say, "Just carry the insurance, it's still in my name." You can have a guy haul off the car to a scrap yard and give you $200. This may not be an area of endeavor you experience but for some people, it's all they ever know or how they grew up.

I myself have been involved, in some way or shape or form, with about half a dozen quit claim deeds and at least one really interesting OFFER to transfer property that way; although the guy said "Quick Claim Deed" and, being polite and very intrigued by his offer, I didn't bother to correct him on the spot.

Johnny Northside! said...

To the commenter with the URL.

Oh, THAT anti-anti-Johnny blog.

It's hard to keep track. I forgot about that one. But for the record, I deny authorship or contribution to THAT one, too, though it's clear somebody in my social circle was getting information from me. In fact, I remember asking around about who was doing that blog and I was told, "Don't ask. Better that you don't know."

That sweet little bloggy pie needs to go on my blog roll right now and, if I find myself writing about topics touching upon Jim Watkins, I will be sure to link to it frequently.

Johnny Northside! said...

To the poster at 5:27 PM.

Jim Watkins graduated from St. Anthony high school in, I think, 1989. So, yes, he is a little bit older. And maybe it is the wrong tree. Or, then again, maybe "My Life" isn't always right.

Guess I won't know if the dark, mysterious tree is bearing fruit until I shake it a little and see if some fruit falls out.

Johnny Northside! said...

I was trying to figure out what you're referring to and, yes, I see that "Jim Watkins" and "Plano" brings up a hit that says he's 34.

HOWEVER, if you look at Been Verified, the only Jim Watkins (Jim J Watkins, 41) who is associated with Plano, TX is, well...

Jim J. Watkins, age 41.

On the other hand, Intellius brings up a Jim R. Watkins, 41, also associated with Plano, Texas AND (this is notable) Minneapolis.

Sites like those, arg, they sell bags of crap that might hide a few jewels. Or not. For the most part those "pay for information sites" are for people too lazy or too unskilled to perform their own research though, well, I can't say that's true ALL THE TIME.

Suffice to say I'm way ahead of you but I can't say more at the moment. But your comment caught my attention and I was, like, what? Where's that coming from?

Anonymous said...

A pitiful man-child still raiding gramma's refridgerator, what a crying shame.

Johnny Northside! said...

To be fair, I don't know if the story Jim Watkins told ultimately resulted in him living with his grandma or not. As I write this comment the blog post is still in the POST IN PROGRESS stage and I haven't even copied and pasted the "Go Live With Your Grandmother" information into the blog post, yet.

Amazing how a half-completed post can result, already, in this much discussion.

Anonymous said...

That's because professional or at least competent bloggers don't post half complete, half-assed, in progress articles. They gather all the facts, verify them, and then post the article.
Maybe if you attended the blogger's conference you'd have half a clue how to do it right.
My money is on you getting sued again, and losing.
I can see why you were the example of how to do it wrong.

Anonymous said...

I hope there is more to this story because what you have posted so far is totally anti-climactic

Anonymous said...

You pay to use "Been Verified"? What a waste of money. There are other free sites that provide the same info.
Why would anyone need to subscribe to one of those sites anyway?

Anonymous said...

"Rantings, ravings and vile spewings . . ." Sounds like you could be writing about yourself, John.

Anonymous said...

SON! I used to think your ways were kind of funny but it was clear this anti guy was down at the time and he opens himself up to you as if you two were tight and other than him standing by a friend more than maybe he should have, you saying what you are about the dude now is pretty low. Yeah u guys arent buds now but DUDE! Going off on the dude like this and throwing that email back at him is pretty low. If i was your bud I would wonder if you would do the same to me sometime. Ok its only my take on it but thats just messed up.

Anonymous said...

My opinion of anti-johnny after reading that article he sent you has changed. It looked like he put everyone else who was at risk, ahead of him and he kept trying to do right. If you are trying to humiliate watkins, I don't know why you would publish that because it really isnt a negative at all.

Anonymous said...

So let me understand this. You are publishing an article Jim Watkins wrote, an article he owns, without his permission. And you are publishing this (and the entire blog post) for the purpose of humiliating him and damaging his reputation.
Your intent is crystal clear to a reasonable and rational person.
So please explain to me how these actions are protected by the 1st amendment?

Jim Watkins said...

You actually went and did the "my book is better than his book" junior high-ish comment??? (laughing) What did you expect a TREC-certified, 3-hour continuing education for Realtor's workbook to look like? I am sure Kaplan Professional Schools didn't want to put a lot of un-needed spending into the course materials for me to effectively instruct the class.
But BOY! Your book sure is shiny!!!
(I submitted this comment w/o a link included but, thought it was funny that the new blog you listed on your homepage has one of my better pictures showing.)

Anonymous said...

" Amazing how a half-completed post can result, already, in this much discussion. "

Looks to me like most of the so-called "discussion" was posted by you. Nice way to bump your ratings.

Hopeless, John the wanna-be:

Johnny Northside! said...

A few minor thoughts...

In regard to paying for Been Verified, there is the free portion that can be seen online, and then there's the part you pay for. I was referencing the free portion you can see online. Though, as a matter of fact, one of my behind the scenes researchers helpfully forwarded Been Verified information on Jim Watkins.

In regard to Jim's forwarding the information to me when we were friendly; it wasn't forwarded in confidence. It was forwarded in an unsolicited way and his writings at the top of the email say, hopefully, I would "take an interest" in his situation as a guy who can "shake things up."

This was a draft of an article he intended to publish at the time. In fact, I talked him out of publishing it but now I feel a kind of "public has a right to know" obligation about his real estate teaching expertise.

More information on THAT to follow.

Also, there is more than one entity calling itself "Kaplan" so it's always important to be sure you're talking about the right one.

Anonymous said...

Jim sure is submitting a lot of anonymous comments in various different antijohnny prowatkins voices.pathetic.

Johnny Northside! said...

I think so, too.

I'm submitting a lot of comments, myself, right now.

But instead of submitting comments on this blog, or on Jim's anti-blog, I'm submitting those comments to pretty much all the articles that self-proclaimed "expert" and "real estate mentor" Jim Watkins wrote on the Bigger Pockets website.

Sigh. It's a lot of work. During his reign of "expertise" Jim wrote a lot. Oh, Jim knows this. Oh, Jim knows that. Let Jim tell you another story about his real estate dealings.

(Shaking my head, laughing breathlessly)

"Go live with your grandmother."

Anonymous said...

It appears to me that anytime the anti-johnny posts a comment he indicates the comment is coming from him by using his name or a link. It is unproven, and unless you can prove that anonymous comments are from Mr. Watkins, your accusations are a malicious, false, and defamatory statement.
I asked once, and I'll ask again.
How is this protected by the 1st amendment?
I don't believe it is.

And for the record, I am not Mr. Watkins. I am sure you have a widget. Check my IP. I'm sure it is different that Mr. Watkins.

Johnny Northside! said...

Blah blah blah.

So let me get this straight. The ANONYMOUS commenter is saying that if I say the ANONYMOUS commenter sounds like Jim Watkins, then the ANONYMOUS COMMENTER thinks Jim Watkins is being defamed?

Hysterically funny.

Oh, I have an idea. Let's all hang around for a while and see what JIM says about it?

(Elaborately acting like Jim isn't nearby)

Jim?! Jim are you THERE? Jim, what do you say to all this?

Johnny Northside! said...

Hey, Jim.


Oh, wait. Never mind. What I meant was just keep living where you are living.

Anonymous said...

I already read that Blah blah blah is what you write when you're rattled.
How about answering the question as to how your attacks on Mr. Watkins are protected by the First Amendment.
I really don't care what Watkins has to say about it. I want an answer from the guy who won his case, the guy who claims to be a First Amendment expert.
I say Watkins has grounds for a civil suit. You tell me why he doesn't; why the First Amendment applies to these writings.
If you can't,(or won't)then I'll take it to mean that I'm right.
I can't be any fairer than that.

jim said...

You ignorant inbred of a wasted existence! You are not exactly credible for a reason... you rarely research anything before spewing off on your rants. You looked at the UPLOAD DATE on the video and not when the news story actually aired! Try September 2006! You believe you are hurting my career that I changed years ago. Oh weaknesses with your video camera?? Unless you made it yourself, I'd call it a review. Do your research for once you pathetic excuse for a blogger.

Johnny Northside! said...

Oh, I see, Jim. Is there anywhere in the video itself where it says when it was shot? Or some reason to assume it wasn't uploaded some time around the time the news story was created?

It certainly appears that if the video was shot in 2006 and you uploaded it much later, that this was part of your effort to recast yourself as a "foreclosure expert" in light of the meltdown of your real estate career. I will take a look at the text I wrote and determine if an ever-so-slight correction is needed in light of your assertions. Obviously, I don't make mistakes on purpose (unlike some people who MAKE THINGS UP and publish those things on the internet) so if a correction is needed, it will be corrected.

Inquiring minds want to know if you really are living with your grandmother, then? Or, wait, let me use the Jim Watkins go live with his with grandmother font.


Anonymous said...

Jim, did you go live with your grandmother?

Answer the question. Otherwise I will take your silence as a yes.

Johnny Northside! said...

A particularly graphic comment has been rejected, the printable substance of which is that Jim should be ashamed for mooching off his grandmother. To be perfectly fair, this blog has not published any evidence that Jim is actually living with his grandmother or has, in the past, lived with his grandmother and so to make a leap of assumption may be technically unfair to Jim at this point in time.

The poster then makes certain assertions I will not publish which are graphic in nature.

Thank you for your passion, but please clean up your remarks a little bit so I can publish them according to the evolving but common sense standards of this blog.

Johnny Northside! said...

Yet another comment from the Anti-Johnny is rejected. I have made it very clear I won't publish his comments with links to his site.

Jim makes an odd remark, "It's the second of the month, lot rent is due." I do not understand what is meant by that remark.

Jim also asks, tauntingly, what happened to the comments I asserted I was posting on the Bigger Pockets blog, for which Jim used to write but no longer does in light of, well, not really having much real estate guru expertise to throw around these days.

To which I respond: I posted a number of substantive comments there and the comments were removed, either by Jim himself or by an administrator. Oh, well. I'm not the only one who can post comments on that site. The people who read Jim's articles on Bigger Pockets should know (as Paul Harvey would say) "The Rest of the Story."

Johnny Northside! said...

Oh, I might add.

Interestingly enough, the byline on at least one of the stories Jim wrote on that blog has been changed from "Jim Watkins" to (ha ha) "Guest Blogger." This appears to have happened overnight.


A Real Estate Investor’s Nightmare: Meet The “Rat House”

by GUEST BLOGGER on APRIL 25, 2008

Jim Watkins said...

Did you learn your detective skills from watching Scooby Doo? Why don't you watch the video rather than cast your opinions on when or why I posted it. The answer can be found IN the video at the 1:10 point where there is a graphic and the reporter's commentary will tell you the year it was aired is not 2009 (when I was out of the business). Also, read the text scrolling on the bottom of the screen as it has many news updates that suggest the timeframe.
So what does all of this rubbish you are saying about me have to do with nomi? And why are you in Texas? MAYBE if you gave me the courtesy of answering my questions honestly, then MAYBE I would answer some of yours. But, you don't play fair do you, Scooby?

Johnny Northside! said...

WHEN you posted it is a matter of record and documented on YouTube itself. May 2, 2009. That's not my opinion, that's a FACT.

WHY you posted it, well, I don't think my speculation is incorrect. To make available documentation that casts you as a kind of "expert," and this following the meltdown of your real estate career which was taking place around the time of the story you wrote. But it's an open mike, of sorts, Jim. Feel free to tell me and everybody else why you posted the video and were you living at Grandma's house at that time?

Also, don't trash talk Scooby Doo. He is my all time favorite, at least prior to the introduction of "Scrappy Doo" as a character.

In regard to what does this have to do with Nomi? I will blog about Timbuktu if I feel so inclined, Jim. But one might indeed ask what the fuck YOU, Jim Watkins, have to do with Nomi that you see fit to trash the number one blogger in Nomi so often. Clearly, at some point, I will answer back.

In spades.

You're the one who ran from North Minneapolis like a little bitch in fright, see your "Bullets in the stucco" story. All the way from Texas you hide out and you trash talk the people who remained behind (who aren't fraidy cat little bitches like you) and are trying to make a difference. And why? Because your "best friend" Thomas Balko went to prison.

Where he belongs.

Which reminds me. I need to drop him and Jon Helgason a line.

Jim Watkins said...

I saw a video on youtube that was about 6 seconds that showed you sort of clucking like some animal and I wondered what was the point of posting it. Doesn't matter. I read your books, John. You talk about how everything you have done, why you do it and explain the "how to" is if it is a "How to be John Hoff" manual. It is ironic that you get so pissed off when someone uses the info from your books to defend themselves from you. It is almost like watching you fight with yourself.

Meltdown of a real estate career? You based that statement off of one article I wrote and didn't publish? I find it really hypocritical that you claim I am a failure when it is a fact that you have never had a career at all. Unless you count your efforts to end other people's careers. That is quite an impressive resume for a person pushing 50 with an education that you have.

What do I have to do with nomi? Nothing. My blog is devoted to YOU, not nomi. If you were to move to maybe, Oklahoma for example, then nomi would be an afterthought. I will say it again though, you threatened me. You have deliberately attacked me and people I know with the intention of inflicting pain and misery. I could go on but, the only thing that matters is that I made you a promise that I intend to keep. If I have my way, you will surely be studied by many long after you and I are both gone. People can learn a lot about what makes some people do such despicable acts against other people when they have a history that they can base their studies on. Kind of like studying Charles Manson. Future generations will benefit from the documentation that is being compiled about him before he passes away. Are you really satisfied with your name being immortalized with just the Moore V. Hoff case? Of course not. Your name should be secured in history for more than that.

I ran from north minneapolis like a... Like a... Wow! So, everyone who moves is like a... Well, what you said? Fraidy cat? "Fraid" of what??? It makes me wonder why you were "Desperate to deploy" last year? Desperate to deploy to anywhere? Why were you desperate to get away from nomi??? I could call you a name here as you did with me but, that is something that only an award winning blogger does. When was the last time you won an award? If only you could go back to the glory days of your life. The good old days, at least until you got desperate to deploy to anywhere again.

Johnny Northside! said...

Because the war was nearly over, Jim, and I wanted to get a piece of it.

Not being part of America's warrior caste, it's not something you could understand. While you were getting suspended in high school for selling candy bars and offering to "split your profits" with the school, I was reading military history and wondering when and where I would have the opportunity to serve my country as my father had done. You were being a human vending machine while I was reading about how to make a good punji stick by dipping it in human shit.

On another topic...

Not everybody who moves from North Minneapolis due to gunfire is a fraidy cat bitch boy.

But there is more than adequate documentation that Jim Watkins fits that description.

Johnny Northside! said...

Oh, did you want me to explain about the video you are referencing? I was imitating Jill Clark's bizarre facial tics. Somebody shot video of me doing that and posted it online. I didn't post it online.

As it turns out, the video is quite socially useful. It documents the fact witnesses observed what seemed like "facial tics" happening to Jill Clark before she started asserting she was having some kind of "medical issues" more or less out of the blue. Nobody had any idea the video would prove USEFUL in any way, it was just kind of a joke.

The universe has a way of putting me right where I need to be doing whatever it is I'm doing.

Anonymous said...

john, i would have to say that you just beat that silly fellow down with your comment at 12:00 a.m. Unless this man-child is totally shameless, he should now put his little tail between his legs and retreat to grandmas broom closet, jus' sayin'