Autobiography

Feelings Re Country

After having an 800lb steel door come down on top of me at Kraft food and getting a large settlement and the attorney getting 1/3 and my ex-wife getting ½, I took the rest and went back to school, getting an associates degree, and a BA and got remarried and fathering 2 sons in the process. I was a radio engineer on Pine Ridge Reservation with the Lakota Native Americans (Sioux) in South Dakota at Wounded Knee. I have lived in abject poverty. I have lived with outdoor plumbing and then went to work with outdoor plumbing. With my recommendations re the transmitter, before it was over, the radio station obtained air conditioning and indoor plumbing. What did I get out of the deal? I got the beginnings of my Sobriety, humility, seeing what our country was really founded on. I have been in both poverty and riches. I worked both sweating as a laborer, and as a Teletype operator right around the corner from the White House in Washington, DC., for a Stockbroker, representing some of the most influential people of the nation.
Sometimes I make comments without thinking. There are other times, I want to see who will respond…Right now, I am concerned when I see the country that I served being destroyed from within. I do not hold against those who want to make a better life here. But for our government to open the doors in Arizona for the drug dealers and gangs and do nothing, it offends me. For them to continue a war which is to support the drug dealers of Afghanistan, it offends me…For them to screw around in the Gulf, it offends me…I am a 68 year old man and have nothing but my Social Security now and it may not last. I am frightened. I am frightened for me, for my sons, for those who want to make a living honestly, and those who take care of their families I am frightened. I can only trust in my Lord and take one day at a time. I had Charles Washington die in my arms telling me to trust Jesus, I couldn’t then; but I try to now. But, it is hard when I see those in power, and have money screwing with the country that my father and I served. And I am angry. I want for things to change. But, I don’t want to see socialism come to pass.

I think of government building projects and everything is drab on the outside. But in capitalism there is individualism and creativity.

Since living on the Reservation, I have been divorced again, moved to Florida, chasing my 3rd wife and got another divorce, been in the VA hospital for an extended period of time followed by Faith Farm in Ft. Lauderdale and Calvary House. Eventually, I found a job working for Radio Shack, which wound up being the last place I had worked before I decided to retire, after I had filed for Social Security. By that time I had been remarried and divorced for the 4th time. I worked as In Home Support for a Developmentally Disabled Man in my recuperation from my divorce. I lived with roommates, who were also employees of Radio Shack at the time who were a lot younger than I.   I found the place I live in now. The last place I worked was Radio Shack and my unemployment was extended for almost 2 years.

To be honest, I have benefited by the moves made by present President. I had extended unemployment; a VA Pension, a free cell phone and 16 dollars of Food Stamps was extended to me. But, because I disagree with socialism and communism I am against those in the White House and the Presidency.

We Were Taught To Wait and Red Heads Rule

I had an appointment to the VA this morning for a fasting blood test, along with everybody else and his brother.  Some brought along their wives.  My appointment was at 9:30 AM and when I got there, they had yet not cranked  into motion.  The waiting room was stirring with men and urine cups, some were anxiously awaiting so they could be able to give a specimen.  Some already had collected a specimen and not had been called for blood to be drawn.  We were all waiting.

All us had one thing in common, we were veterans.  All of the branches of the services; Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, Coast Guard show up there.  Some are on crutches, some are in wheel chairs, some walk from their newer cars, some their older cars, some have taken buses like me, some whose wives had driven them, some have come from nursing homes, some off the streets. 

We all have our stories and they are written on our faces, in our clothing, on memorabilia.  There is one thing else we have in common: we all were taught to wait.  I remember the expression, hurry up and wait.  And wait this morning we did.  Reading old news magazines, chatting with their wives, and trying to make a point that our appointment was at 9:30 AM and we were fasting to no avail because so was everybody else.

While I was sitting there, I mused over the young woman that stayed on the bus, as I got off at the airport.  She had gotten on after I had and sat near me.  She was a redhead.  She had short hair and looked like it had been military cropped.  I told her about my motto, “Red Heads Rule, Real Reads Reign.” 

She told me how she used to have lovely red locks and that her roommates had cut them off.  The noise of the bus prevented me from hearing some of the story as to the surroundings.  I suspect she was either asleep, out cold from drinking or drugs. 

We chatted about not needing a 4 year degree any more but a concentrated degree in anything.  She seemed like an intelligent young lady and I wound up telling her that redheads look good whether their hair is short or long.   About that time we arrived at the airport and I wished her well and left to change buses to go to the VA… 

…About that time, the technician called my last name.  I had to give him my full name and social security number.  He gave me a specimen cup after he had drawn samples of blood and I drew samples of urine for them easily as I had been drinking lots of water.

I had brought my regular breakfast with me and I asked someone to heat it up and I ate it right in the lobby. 

Yesterday, I had a friend offer to take me to the VA, but he needed to be at his sister’s by 12 noon.  I already knew it was a 45 min ride back.   Here is the text that I sent to him as I was waiting for the bus:  “Now that I’ve given specimens, shopped at Walgreens, ate my breakfast, ate half a sandwich at Panera’s, I realize you could have driven me.  I just would have given up shopping, lunch, and sweating in the noisy traffic waiting for a bus.”

I got home a little after 2 PM, unpacked, put my back bedroom AC on, took my shirt off, and lay down for a nap.  The phone rang.  It was my sponsor in AA.  He is also a Veteran and knows the VA.  I chatted briefly with him and went back to sleep…

My dinner tonight was half a Panera sandwich, a chocolate dessert…

You were waiting, “RED HEADS RULE.”

Why I don’t trust many people

I wanted to trust my doctor at the VA.  I really did.  The fact that English was not his native tongue, had nothing to do with when I struggled to understand he or his nurse.  I just figured the years had passed since the course I had taken in Spanish had lapsed and I had not really spoken it on a daily basis.  But, when I had an increase in seizures and called him and all he could do is increase my medications and now I still have a seizure now and then, am experiencing side effects of the medication such as palpitating heart, burning skin, being tired and no energy.  My memory and comprehension seems to be getting worse.

I wanted to trust a friend of mine who said call me any time when you need a ride when the weather is bad and I called him and he could not give me a ride and I had to rush out the door trying not to miss a bus in the misty rain.

There is one in Israel on whose mailing list I am.  At first I thought this man had a ministry and he was just asking for money for it.  But when I don’t read the entire message and show it to another friend and he reads it as a scam.  I did not see that until I read the entire thing.  Why could I not have seen it before?…All of a sudden, I realized this man has been conning me all along.  Send me the money.  Perhaps he is genuine in his beliefs, perhaps he is genuine in his genuine in prayer list, had he not asked for contributions.  Some how that ruined it.  It was something he said.

And I keep getting stung by the con artists on the internet.  They seem to find me, call me on the phone and catch me off guard and I will get stung a little here and a little there, but get stung still.  Even on the street they come up to me, but I have learned how to ignore them or say I am catching the bus now and get on the bus.

Lately, I was in the middle for feeling good while my meds were being adjusted when an online University called me and I wound up signing up with them…Everybody at my support group has told me that it is a Scam, he is a salesman, etc.  Why can I not see that?   I only wanted to look into the possibilities  of doing something and the next thing I have signed my life away.  And during the process, I have a seizure, have not finished the paperwork and could not and still cannot decide what to do. 

I have not had anybody other than this “salesman” and his supervisor talk to me, and another person talk to me.  I am sure that they will say that I knew what I was doing.

But, I may wind up in the hospital, and not be able to do anything with the course.

One minute, I want to drop out.  Another minute I want to get the Masters Degree and I can see myself with it and with it in Mediation & Conflict Resolution in Psychology.  I can visualize myself going to the different attorney’s near the courthouse and letting them know that I am taking the course, etc.   Yet, I am tired most of the time and will come home after my meetings, eat a sandwich, read some email, and take a nap.  I get up, get my snail mail, fix dinner, get on the computer or watch a movie.  After the movie then I will go through a routine of Face book, Farmville, and Mafia Wars.  Sometimes I focus on Farmville, others on Mafia Wars.  I am not sure how I could even do an online course.  I am not sure that I would even follow through with going to the various attorneys.  In my youth with energy, I may have.

I chit chat with others on Face Book making comments, and now am finding hard to stay up late so I am going to be early.  I really don’t want to play anything tonight.

All of my snail mail is filled with every body wanting me to send them money for their cause.  All of e-mail is filled with everybody wanting me to send them money for their cause.  Darn it, I don’t have any money.  My unemployment just ran out.  I have not been able to really find a job and have not really looked for one and now really having a problem.

I am just plain tired.  My old Jeep broke down and I walk to the bus stop, walk from the bus stop to my AA meeting and walk walk.  I shop on the bus and some times some one takes me.  But, only, when it is convenient for them. Rightly so. 

I want a wife.  But she would have to support me or be just as broke and want to struggle along with me.  LOL. 

The reality about me is that I don’t get things done.  My father used to say the road to hell is paved with good intentions.  Well I have paved a great share of it.  And yet the things that I really need to do, I put off and cannot get done somehow.

Right now I am in survival mode.  I am going to lay down early…

State of Illinois Pirates

Most of my income is Social Security. 

I owe the State of Illinois some back Child Support, although my sons are grown and see nothing of it.  This month for some reason, Social Security decided to deduct my payment 3 times. 

Is this Obama’s New financial scheme to help the broke State of Illinois? The  RHFP…Robin Hood Financial Program.   Rob from the poor and give to the State.  And only if you are of a certain ethnic background.  Is that it?

Is it because I am Scots-Irish, huh? Or, A Veteran? 

I said, I will become a Democrat, just give me the money; but, I guess you really did not believe me. 

So, William Wallace, talk to me, tell me what to do, brother…

Where is my sword?   I wish I were younger…

I never will forget her

My mind drifts back to a long ago to Augsburg, Germany.  I was in love big time.  And the Mott brothers were making fun of me.  But, being typical Irish that they were, seeing that making fun of the situation would not cure me, they decided to have a wedding.  So Pat climbed up into a tree and acted as the preacher.  We used one of my sister, Fontaine’s bracelets instead of a ring.   We had a wedding that day and got married for sure.  It was not long after that, Judy’s father was transferred as was Pat and Mike’s.  Soon, we were on our way back to the States and I never did see Judy, Pat or Mike again.

Maybe that is why none of my marriages worked out because I was really married to Judy the whole time in the back of my mind.  I never have forgotten her.  And my prayers have always been with her.

I  went on Google tonight and there were all kinds of Judy’s on there…She probably got married.  But, they all seemed special talented women.  I guess my prayers were answered, huh?

Reflections on a Sunday Evening, Holocaust Remembrance

I woke up this morning, looking at the weather, wondering if I would have decent weather while doing my laundry.  As I fumbled to make myself breakfast, somehow I was a week off and thought it was Easter in spite of all of the “Spring Eggs” on Mafia Wars and Farmville, all of the discussion regarding changing the name of Good Friday in  a town in Iowa to Spring day or something like that…I was going to play Handel’s Messiah and that would be my Easter celebration.

I fumbled my way over to my calendar hanging on my wall and discovered that Easter had come and gone last week.  I discovered that this was Holocaust Remembrance Day.   Having been married to an Israeli woman whose parents had been through the Holocaust, I was keenly aware of it. 

But, that was not the only reason.  I was born during World War II and an Army Brat.  We used to go to the movies and see all kinds of news flicks before the main one.

I was aware that my father had been transferred to Germany and spent 3 years there and seen the affects as we travelled throughout of what war does to a country.  But, when we took the Displaced Persons ship on the way home, at the age of 7, I became aware of what the holocaust really was.

There are those in the world who will say that it did not happen.  Those are the ones that our present President bows before.

While my memory was 58 years ago, it was vivid because it was the first time that I saw a grown man cry.  Up until that time, being the child of Army, my concept of men, were that they did not cry.

I slipped off from my sisters, mother and father.    And I was exploring the ship, while we were headed back to the States, I found an older man sitting in a chair on one of the decks.  He smiled at me and I smiled back. I sat down near him.  For a long while I was quiet.  Finally my curiosity got the best of me.  And he was not in the Army and I had to know. 

I asked why he had numbers on his arm?  Was it like my dog tags? And I showed him my dog tags.  Then I told him I liked his beard and he began to cry and said tell them what you say…Tell them what you say…and younger people came out to be with him, shooing me away.

When we reached Ellis Island, NY. I saw this same man, this time he had a hat one, and he was dancing in a circle with the younger people. 

I know that the holocaust happened because I have met those who went through or those whose parents did.   Tell them what you saw…

Best laid plans…

I stayed up late until shortly after midnight with Farmville, finally harvesting my crops and planting some new ones. Yet, I never did get to visit my neighbors.  This is a game that stirs up all kinds of guilt when your own neighbors come and feed my chickens, and fertilize my crops and I don’t do a darn thing for them mainly because I never could get a browser to work right.

So, today, I had planned to go to my discount club and pickup a bulk shopping, taking my little dolly with me on the bus…So I took the bus schedule and went to lay down on the bed just for a minute…The next thing I know…it has been several hours…oh well, the best laid plans of mice and men.  I think I will go tomorrow, he says to himself.  Sure was nice when I had my Jeep and the money to keep it up.  (But, ya don’t! So, accept reality, boy.)  I can hear my Daddy talkin’ now…I think I have taken over his place inside my own head.

I just have to get to bed earlier…as I try to figure out what to eat for dinner…And off to the internet he goes…