Saturday, December 24, 2011

Thoughts and wishes

The easiest way to tackle this post is by addressing the obvious, first:

If I had one wish, it would be to wake up tomorrow with Jack by my side, even if we had nothing.
As much love as I have for my family, and though nothing will change that, this year has been one for me to remember. They have made it clear (whether or not they realize it) that they have clear definitions on what happiness and success mean....and I don't meet the criteria.
So, as much as I would love to be with them to see my grand niece and grand nephew open their presents, there will hopefully be other times. I know how cold this sounds, but know that I have had my share of that same treatment and will leave details out of it. This year, I will simply have to love them from a distance and hope that this does not become the tradition that I never wanted to happen, let alone continue.

My thoughts for this holiday season:

What I hope people will begin to do is understand that while they complained about how long they had to wait for their $100 Honey Baked Ham, there were families counting change to see if there is enough for a special dinner. While some complained about the results of their decorations, others stayed awake in a shelter to make sure their children slept safely. While some gave their children brand new cars and homes, others sold their soul to the devil just to see a brighter future for themselves and their families.

What I hope people will do is begin to look around and see the world of suffering, sacrifice and anguish beyond their own back yard.
What I hope people will do is begin to think for themselves and leave one sided opinions behind.

The whole truth can never be had by a television show, a radio or internet broadcast, or by reading only one book. The whole truth can only be had when people open their hearts, their minds, and begin to see the whole picture, then realize that the earth does not just revolve around them. It revolves around all of us.

Thank your God for what you have, but pray that your God will one day help those who have lost everything but somehow, for whatever reason, still worship the same God as you.

Blessings to all. May your hearts and minds open up to the whole truth, and very soon.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Temporary insanity

Yesterday (December 18) made one year ago that I took Jack's urn and placed it down in his grave, with my own two hands. After the graveside 'service' ended, I received the typical hugs and fake support from his family (since none of mine bothered to come).
Today, for some reason, the depression is worse than usual. While I am not suicidal, I am very angry about plenty of plenty of things, and resentful of a lot of people. As far as I'm concerned, those I resent have earned it and then some.
After making it clear enough that my life is not exactly stable, after making it clear that I am broke as hell, after making it more than clear enough that the holiday season basically means nothing to me, things are still flying over the heads of people who should be wise enough to pay attention, but are not. It almost seems as that I should no longer bother to even try explaining anything to these people any further, because I am close enough to being blue in the face from trying.
I still don't comprehend grief. I still don't get what it means to emotionally break down and release what is now a cancer on my soul. I still don't know how people are able to do that, then move on so well. It just doesn't make sense to me.
What I am probably the most tired of is those who assume that all I do is sit here, chain smoke, eat snake cakes and fuck around on Facebook all day long. I am writing just as hard as I can go, when the ideas come to mind. I am doing what I can to try and get noticed by the right people, so I can begin to make a living for myself. But, I am a true non conformist. People like me don't just get hired. People like me have to go out of our way to get noticed by the right people, hope that who noticed us is willing to take a chance on us, and if the chance pans out, off we go with success. Otherwise, there are LOTS of us who become hardcore drug addicts, existing mental issues become even worse, some commit suicide (Nope, I am not), end up homeless, some become psychotic and take it out on everyone not responsible, and hurt far too many people in the process of attempting to get revenge on a system which rejected them from the beginning.
I am not special. I am just stubborn, and am hellbent on doing things MY way. I will reiterate from my previous post: If it means I have to slum it on ramen noodles while living in a storage unit, just to do things MY way, so damn be it.
I am not looking for respect, but wouldn't mind it. I don't demand respect, but I don't go out of my way to disrespect others who did nothing to ask for it.
I feel that this country (America) rewards the wrong people, and for the worst kind of behavior. I think that our country has headed in a direction of complete extremes, and those in the middle are beyond tired of it.
I don't side with the liberals, so I'm called a trator. I don't side with the conservatives, so I'm called a liberal. What the hell happened to people using their heads and thinking for themselves?
We have been repeatedly warned what would happen if we did not begin putting both sides of the political aisle in check, but here we are again....stuck in the same rut we have been in, many times before. Will we EVER learn from history, or is it going to continue repeating itself?
Either way, this was not mainly meant to be political. I strayed from the original subject. My apologies for that.
Depression has set in. Today, it's really bad. I have taken my medication, and it has done nothing to help. I have a bad feeling that trying to visit my family this year would be an exercise in extreme futility. I just don't feel the holiday spirit, anymore. My heart, while it tries as hard as possible to reach out, has blackened. My soul is less than half of what it used to be, unless I see someone I care about being personally attacked and/or hurt enough that they don't know how to properly reach out. My mind is looking for every reason not to shut down, and I am going well out of my way to try and avoid it. I hope I can prevent it. My roommates don't need this, in their already hectic and difficult lives.
I know that most of this is temporary, but damn.....I am so sick of dealing with this mental baggage. But, I may as well get used to it. This is how I was born, and it simply reared its head with age.
Since your god wont save me, I hope someone's will. I can only do so much, by myself.
Today, I am truly lost.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

The changing of my own rules

There is so much about me that my friends and readers do understand, but perhaps I didn't explain myself well enough and I only have myself to blame for that. Moreover, this is a day which apparently needed to happen. On that, here goes a rant:

I am an old school, somewhat politically progressive man who just so happens to be a free thinker. I don't just talk. If enough comes my way, good AND/or bad, that talk will become action at lightning speed, and with laser focused anger.
My thoughts are not always productive, but my words have had a knack for connecting with people.
Those words, unfortunately, have not made me one thin dime while others gladly ran with those words and cashed in with them. The prestige of name recognition is a great thing and I will take what I can get, for now. But, prestige does nothing for a vehicle which has not left the parking lot of this apartment complex since my arrival, on July 20. It also pays no bills, puts no groceries on the table, nor does it help my roommates with THEIR bills, which I have tried my damndest to help with, as much as possible....and it just isn't enough.
With all of this in mind, I give the following declarations (Manifesto? Call it what you will....at this point, I truly don't give a fuck):

There will be no more free words for your flow of profit. If it means shutting this entire blog down, removing myself from various Facebook pages and making my profile 100% privite, in order to enforce this declaration, so be it.

I am more than tired of seeing people with no morals or shame give hope to me, in the hopes that I will continue to produce more freebies, and never receive anything but the 'Attaboy', in return.

I am NOT a marionette or anyone's slave. I will be my own person, even if it means taking my own life just to remain free.....and before you take that wrong, NO: I am not suicidal. I'm just madder than hell, and for several reasons.

I will be creating a company name, and I will be creating a Paypal account.

I will begin keeping my original thoughts and phrases under lock and key, and the rest will be password protected.

If it requires that I sell my entire estate just to pay for copyrights to all of my own original material, while I slum it off of ramen noodles in a storage unit until the right person takes my work seriously and begins to pay me for what comes from MY mind, and from MY keyboard, then that's a decision I am willing to live with.

The past few years have been a mental whirlwind, but the past year has been a learning experience that I MUST keep into mind.
December 9 made one year ago that I became a widow, and here I sit at the apartment of 2 very dear friends who need their privacy and space, just as much as anyone.....and I am now getting in the way of it.
Thanks to my mind freezing up, and thanks to me attempting to jump at opportunities, thanks to constant critique from a family who has made the majority of their living from the Department of Defense (and I don't, so I'm nobody), I have become quite depressed yet again.

While I should know better than to let the words and actions of others get me down, I am only human. I can only take so much of people not being able to take a damn good look in the mirror at their own hypocrisy and understand that they wouldn't have a pot to piss in without selling their soul to someone or something, somewhere way back when.
Forgive me (or not....don't care which) for refusing to conform, but I am my own person.
I march to my own drum. I think and write as I god damn well please and from now on, if someone wants to use any of my ideas, they will pay me for them.

To reiterate, in case it applies to you: YOUR FREE FUCKING RIDE IS OVER. PAY UP, OR GET THE FUCK OUT OF MY LIFE.

Forgive the rant, but I have also had to conclude that I think better and ideas flow easier when I'm depressed. I don't like it. But, it seems that with so many other shitty aspects in my life, this is the hand I was dealt and on that, I plan to play.....and one way or another, I AM going to win......with or without you in it.

Good day. Peace and love to all, I suppose.
If you can find either, please throw me a map.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Assessment on recovery, so far

I have now been in Pensacola for close to 4 months. In that time, I have accomplished absolutely nothing. When it comes to the goal of living at half speed, I have met it.
My mind needed much more than just a distraction. It needed to relax, because it had long forgotten how. I can't say that I am finished with accomplishing nothing, though it's not what I really want. I am more than aware of how counterproductive and unpopular this stance is, but prior to my accomplishment, no one else was in my head and felt the need to install a fly swatter and smash the infestation of flying thoughts. 
Medication was no longer working. It was not the medicine's fault. The fault was mine. As far as I can tell, this is the point of mind over matter became a harsh reality.
When everything that represents mortar in your life busts to pieces, it leaves you in the same condition as the mortar. Everyone reacts and copes differently. Too many people look at others who have little trouble bouncing back and say to themselves, "If it were me, I would have done the same thing.", when the fact is that they don't have the first clue what they would do, since it hasn't happened to them and I don't want to use the word 'yet', but it fits. The sentiment is admiration, rather than inspiration, and we often confuse the two rather easily. I am proud to know that I have been both to a few, and one or the other to a few others. All I can do is hope that no one would waste their time lying to me about it, so I carry a small degree of pride in the knowledge that I made a difference in someone's life.
There was a time when life worked very well. When I found the love of my life, things fell into place. We worked like hell and played even harder. It was not unusual to wake up before the alarm clock went off. It was not unusual to have coffee, go out for breakfast, and still arrive to work earlier than the others. It was not unusual to take the dogs to a kennel, put suitcases into the vehicle, and head straight to a weekend vacation spot, from the parking lot of the workplace. It was also not unusual to come back home around midnight, lose a little sleep, then spend the following week catching up. Because we were a well oiled machine, it was easy.
When your routine is in order and working properly, you don't even notice nuances like what I have mentioned. You don't notice because they are that routine for you, and the routine works. When that routine becomes interrupted hard enough, you will be forced to inventory and compartmentalize what is what. If something is not crucial and in your face, you will automatically file it in the back of your mind. The drawback is how the back of your mind becomes bogged down from so much filing, back there. At that point, inertia kicks in.
When it is imperative that your biggest achievement be surviving another day without breaking down, without suicidal thoughts and/or images that haunt you, much of what you could otherwise be doing with your life has to be sacrificed for the greater good of simple survival. This is a tool I have had to learn as I go. On the outside, it does not seem as if I have been busy, but I have. I have been very busy surviving another day without breaking down, and without suicidal images and/or haunting thoughts. Believe it or not, this is something new to me. I truly am surprised that I have achieved this. But, the only way I could do that is by taking the emotion known as 'sadness', and mentally shutting that switch off. I did not want to do that, but I am now glad that I did. It certainly does not mean that the switch never turns back on and I have a few blog posts to prove it. But, the average tears and sadness that a person goes through is something I couldn't deal with anymore and expect to be happy. When that changes, you will know. If there is one thing you all know about me, it's that I have a serious problem keeping my exterior to myself.
The biggest drawback is having had a few panic attacks, which has caused some Agoraphobia to return. This is also part of inertia, sadly. At the same time, I'll take Agoraphobia over suicidal thoughts and crying spells. I just can't deal with that, anymore. It was sucking the life out of me. There will eventually be a better balance to my life, but it will take time. Waiting is always the hardest part of achievement.
Have faith in me. Somehow, someway, I will be okay. 
Peace and love to all.



Saturday, November 5, 2011

No title

This is to let the readers know that my mind has decided to take a break. It's not writer's block. It's exhaustion. Nothing is wrong (at least nothing, in particular), so there is no real need to worry.

Over the past few years, I have dealt with more than what most see in a few decades. It makes me no better, but it has left me mentally fatigued. I wake up, have my coffee, mind begins to wander, then begins to dramatically slow down. It has left me with little to think about, but thoughts are still swimming around (and they always are).

Several changes have happened, since this blog began. Not only is it almost a year ago that I became a widow, but also there are life altering investments on behalf of one of my roommates, which will see him into a good future, financially and with real satisfaction.

Things are beginning to look up, but the climb is tiring me. I haven't pulled for anyone other than Jack in a very long time, and the way I am effected/affected by what happens with my roommates is still something new that I am wrestling with. I know the mental investment has been worth it. Time can be such a pain in the ass.

Anyway, just wanted to check in with everyone and say hello. Don't give up on me. I'm not giving up on myself.


Friday, October 14, 2011

My thoughts, exactly!

If you are reading this from an email, you need to come to the website (Ramblingfreak.com) and see the video clip. This is exactly what I think, and I know for a fact that I am not in the minority.
Take it away, "Old Fart"....and MORE POWER TO YA!




Friday, September 16, 2011

Original oxymorons

For those who know me, it's not a secret that most people get on my nerves. I am a people person, but still have my limits and prefer small groups over large crowds.
When I see someone, in person or otherwise, performing a case of 'monkey see, monkey do', I wonder how long that someone waited to rule out whether or not that person's friends would approve or not, before proceeding. I also wonder if that person felt the need to do exactly as someone else, just because. I know I have been guilty of it, but I eventually grew up.
As sad as I sometimes find all of this, it's equally sad when people who claim to be original are often the total opposite, after weeding out said original person's shiny and new exterior.
This also applies to people with die hard political associations who never stray from those beliefs, regardless of how ridiculous and/or unattainable those beliefs may be.
No matter how hard we try, we can't all be originals for every minute of the day. Simply put, it's not possible.
Most of what we think has been thought before. If we looked hard enough or researched long enough, we would find that somewhere in the world, someone has actually lived out our thoughts.
You can back unions, but you will still need corporations for one thing or another. You can back corporations, but you would be sadly disappointed by calling a CEO if your house is on fire.
You can call yourself a rebel, but rebels come in all shapes and forms, especially as the world becomes a much smaller place due to advancements in technology for radio, television, internet and cell phones.
While formats can and will become outdated, there indeed are some which have yet to be outdone in quality.
As you poke fun at common name brands, realize that your product of little recognition is being sold by a major department store, be it in a mall or on a website.
The list of examples can go on forever, but the ultimate moral of the story is this: More often than we care to admit, we are what we decry. We can't help it. Being human and having humility will sometimes mix like oil and water. We open a can of laughter and spill a good amount of it on ourselves, because we deserved it and that's what fate handed us. That's just the way it is.
So, did this article upset you? If so, I did my job as an unworthy freak.
However, the point is not that we just stop doing everything, simply because most of what we do has been done before. It's that we realize how dorky we often are for thinking that we are somehow better than most other people.
I am me and you are you. Let's continue to be the best 'us' that we can. It's how we all get along and get by in this crazy, oxymoron of a life.



Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Interruption of peace

The past few days have not been good. Plenty has been on my mind, enough that I have lost sleep over it all.
September 7 made one year ago that I took Jack to the emergency room and he was admitted to the hospital.
September 11 made 10 years ago that our nation was attacked by a rogue piece of shit who took what should be good about religion and contorted it to a sick degree of mental imprisonment for millions, plenty who are struggling with it to this very second.
September 12 is Jack's birthday. Because of September 11, he never celebrated his birthday again. Because of having to go into the hospital, he certainly didn't celebrate it any better, on that day.
Also, I viewed one of the 'worthy widow' blogs. I was disheartened by what I read, rather than being annoyed or offended.
So, there are the 4 main topics which have been bothering me. We widows have a bad habit of quietly psycho-analyzing our past. We also have a bad habit of living in moments that made us and our better halves who we were, as a couple. Don't try to understand. It's simply not something you should worry about, if you're not one.
I do have to say that I am even more glad to not have become one of the 'worthy widows', though they have their blog and chat related grief support networks. It doesn't appear to working out too well for them, or so it seems. Truly, the one blog I read was sad. 
I said what I did about not judging others without having walked in their shoes, and I will do my best to live up to my own expectations. After all, it's the least I can do and still expect to be taken seriously, by anyone. However, it saddens me to know that there are people with friends, children, jobs, active social lives and even financial stability, who are still in such a tragic degree of pain that they are blinded by it. I know, deep down, that most of these people are deep within the trenches of post traumatic stress disorder. Sadly, the diagnosis applies to many of us, and I am no exception. 
The biggest difference is that I am improving my life and making progress with what little mind I have left.
How I miss my mid to late 20s, though. I had my groove on like never in my life, and have yet to get that feeling back within me since. 
Perhaps one day, time and progress will allow me another shot at some form of success, beyond peace of mind. While that is my main goal, I don't want it to be the only one. But, if that is all life allows me to give myself, I will gladly take it. 





Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Breakthrough, part 2: My ears don't burn without a reason

I'm sure that my first installment of this post has people talking. After reading my post a few times, I can see why. This is not an attempt to roll back anything I said. This is to better elaborate a few points. Beyond this post, I will answer questions but will not do another post on the subject.
First of all, we have been conditioned from childhood to believe a lie. Marijuana is nature, and nature is how basically every medication is made. If you have a problem with the nature your god created, I don't know what to say, except for a suggestion that you read your bible.
Second: I miss working. I miss having that extra purpose of waking up, other than to watch programs I usually find boring, or listen to the same music repeatedly and the like. I miss the daily interaction. Work has rewards which exceed money and benefits. Not only do I remember them well, but I wish I could have them back. Speaking of back......
In April, 2001, I fell down my staircase (ALL the way down) into my basement. My ribs, shoulders, middle back, lumbar region, basically all of me, felt every hit from every step. One side of my hip is still larger than the other (Realize that this is more than ten years later).
I still cannot stand for more than 10 minutes without feeling severe discomfort that is well on its way toward annoying pain. Even with that pain, I also have Spinal Stenosis.....a condition in which parts, or all of the leg, or legs, will go numb.....and this is on top of the pain I already deal with. This happens while driving, has happened while walking, has hit at the moment of back injury, and has caused many a subsequent fall.
I am used to walking fast. Even with my condition(s), the urge to walk quickly is just there and always has been. I don't walk as fast as I did, when I got down here. I pay much more attention to what I do and how I do it. To a degree, it has helped. But, that creates limits on what I can do, because I am taking the risk of having no medication as a buffer.
You did read the last sentence correctly: The next time I have a fresh back injury, there will only be Neurontin to fall back on, and there is not enough to sustain me, should I have to begin taking it on a regular basis, again. There is no opiate related narcotic relief. For the past 3 years, I have been off of it and luckily, have not injured my back bad enough to need them....yet. Furthermore, Neurontin is only supposed to be good enough for nerve pain and that's off label use. I ignore more pain than I address.
So, incase you think I am collecting disability because I am lazy, do think much further. On top of that, feel free to take on the knowledge of my psychiatrist, who has 18 years of medical school behind him (and the proof of 2 MRI results, on my back). Moreover, a family of 3 spends more on groceries than my disability check, per month. If you think you can live like this, go right ahead and try. I will be waiting and laughing my ass off, when you return my responsibilities to me.
Don't be afraid to ask questions. I did say that I am not going to lie and while I would prefer not to revisit this subject, I will still answer questions if they are presented with reason and without tired, stereotypical rhetoric.
The reason I conclude that there is a lot to be said for medical marijuana is because there is legitimate medicinal properties to the stuff. There is actual pain relief, there is a calming 'effect' not related to getting high (thus, eliminating the need for Trileptal), though I still get to deal with panic attacks. I can't do anything about those, once they start. In fact, no one can.
There is a huge difference between anxiety attacks and panic attacks. I should not be doing your homework for you, but these can be crippling. There are witnesses to what mine are like and everyone of them will tell you that they have never seen an attack like these. My heart rate is not affected, but my fingers draw inward until they touch. You can pull them apart, but they literally slap right back together, as soon as you let go of them. The attacks are that severe. Before my diagnosis, 2 paramedics saw what happened (as did a restaurant full of customers). Even the paramedics knew this was nasty.
I understand, very well, that taking the "Physician heal thyself' approach can be incredibly dangerous. I am removing the safety net, which has been there for at least a decade and in some situations, almost 2 decades. I would be lying if I said I were not apprehensive about even trying this. I took 3 weeks and pondered most possibilities, should something bad happen. I did my research, read testimonials (taken with proper grains of salt, obviously) and took into account that it could possibly be overstated, as well as under appreciated. To me, the risks outweigh the side effects of all that medicine I stuffed down my throat, day after day, year after year. Enough, already.
All indicators (In other words, my own living proof) are that this is a better solution and for now, that solution is a reality. But, don't worry; If this solution becomes a bust, you will be among the first to know about it.
From here, feel free to ask your questions. If they are not related to common rhetoric, I will gladly answer them. But, if I feel you are using them to a political angle, I will trash you big time, in the next post. Count on it.
Don't pretend to know how someone's feet are feeling, until you have walked at least a mile in their shoes.



Monday, September 5, 2011

Breakthrough: A BIG ONE

I can now openly state, for the first time, that I am now safely off all 3 prescription medications that I was taking upon my arrival, here in Florida.
First medication I began taking, way back in October, 1994, was Xanax and while there is no cure for Panic Disorder, I am now willing to try using a VERY SMALL amount of Valium, only as needed. This does mean that the odds of a panic attack happening will heavily increase, but I don't really care. I grew tired of being a slave to medication and that includes what I take for pain....which, by the way, is not an opiate or synthetic, therein. What I took for that is called Neurontin. I began taking it in December, 2000. My physician replaced it with opiates, in February, 2001, and there were several. I eventually ended up on OxyContin from several back injuries and the pain from nerve damage. After 4 years, my doctor also included Lyrica. I had to discontinue that, because I was swollen all over, from it. I quickly went back to Neurontin, because there was so much of it left, from when I was originally taking it. The pain is still there, just not as much because I am far more careful with myself, these days.
Last and absolutely not least, perhaps the most important medication of the past 9 years and 11 months, Trileptal. This is what I took, in place of an antidepressant, because all of what I took either didn't work or I ended up receiving too much side effect, not enough medicinal and/or mental and/or physical benefit.
Before anyone can begin thinking this was all a fake: No, it never was. Some of us have a much harder time adjusting in the world than others, and that's just the way it is. We end up fighting within ourselves, and become our own worst enemies as the consequence of not directing attention to the problem, soon enough.
There are ways to survive, and I am learning all about it with each passing day. Every day will not be an adventure, nor will every day be a success. I don't expect that. What I DO expect, however, is more out of myself than what happened with my 30s, which was wasting them to a world of medications for partial benefit.
Incase you're wondering if I am now taking anything over the counter, the answer is no.
What I AM taking, however, is advantage of a very small amount of medical marijuana. You don't have to agree with it, but ask yourself if you really think I could have safely removed myself from those other medications on blind faith and will power, alone. If you need assistance with the answer, try this: HELL NO!
There is A LOT to be said about medical marijuana, because there is absolutely no way the regular, cheap and compressed garbage from Mexico would yield this kind of benefit to me. I have no idea what else I can say about the fact that I'm successfully using it, except that I am NOT using it to just get high. Seriously, this shit is WAY too expensive to use, in that manner. Also, the 'buzz' I always got from the other stuff is not the same. Truly, there is a revolution going on, in that world. I would dearly love to be a fly on the wall, just to see what all these growers are doing to create such.....dare I say it...works of art, such as what is now available for use.
I tell you, everyone, this is as real as it gets for me...at least for now. I am thinking much more clearly. I am now beginning to sleep better. I am not getting stuck on just one thought or staying hyped on just one particular subject, as I used to do. So, if this is all in my head, fine...I will gladly take it. Something about clarity of the soul, I don't know....this is interesting.
I do have to say that I specifically asked for supervision, from my 2 room mates (One is a lifelong friend, and the other a very dear friend of almost 15 years), while this transition has taken place. To my knowledge, they have only voiced concern to me on 2 or possibly 3 occasions. Thus far, that has been the only concern. So far, so damn good. I am happy, even if you are not. Time and success willing, I might even try being happy for you, when you're not.
Never put anything past me, for I am nothing more than a middle aged man with absolutely nothing to lose, except my last breath.



Monday, August 29, 2011

August, 1991: What a trip!

I do recall stating that I would devote a post to the subject of LSD, and that post begins, now....

If you feel that drugs are not one of the most, if not THE most crucial influences in the lives of most forms of entertainment, I want you to do me a big favor.....throw away every single bit of recorded music, every painting, every movie and every book you own. You should also throw away every product made or influenced by Apple (this means your iPod, iPhone, and iPad). THAT is how much of a role drugs have influenced and inspired most artists of the past century, and this century could certainly use it, especially in average recorded music. I wish most of these hacks from American Idol, and the like, would take SOMETHING. They desparately need it.

The first time I did LSD, I was 15. I was a little apprehensive, but everyone else was doing it (yes, I know about the scenario of "If everyone else was jumping off a river bridge, would you?"....I know of plenty who did just that, and I did not. Thank you very much.). Anyway, I took my 1/3 of a hit of LSD, as everyone else did. That was all we could afford, between the 6 of us. Originally, it didn't seem as if anything was going to happen but suddenly, color began to seem more vivid, thoughts more profound, philosophy contained more depth and the degree of laughter was immeasurable. I LOVED IT!!!

I did not dose again until 1988, when the availability of LSD began to flood the area of where I lived. It was a mountain of discovery, philosophy, fun, inspiration came freely, all good music had much more depth and sex under that influence was truly incredible. I was not hooked on the drug, itself. I was hooked on what it began to do FOR me...and in spite of what would happen only 3 years later, I indulged to a great degree.

MTV was much more fun to watch, parties were even MORE fun, what was already funny was roll on the floor hilarious, and heart to heart conversations were had with more mental connection. If you did not do LSD, you can't fully understand what I'm saying. And then, it all changed.

In August, 1991, everything awesome about LSD came to an abrupt end. One evening, I purchased 5 hits from a mutual acquaintance and took 2 of them, before leaving. Within approximately 4 hours, I began to have what is known as a 'bad trip'. What all began to happen within my mind and body is something I can't put to words, no matter how hard I try. All that I CAN say is that I had what is commonly referred to as an 'out of body experience'.....and it is one of the most horrifying sensations I have ever dealt with. For the next several days, I spoke only of what had happened. But, everything I tried to explain to others made absolutely no sense. Don't get me wrong; The people I attempted to explain this to were the same ones I tripped with, on a regular basis. But, because none of them had been hit with a bad trip, AND since I couldn't explain what happened, it just didn't register...with ANYONE. I felt completely alone and knew one thing, for an absolute fact: I could never, EVER, do LSD again. Twenty years later, and to this day, I have not.

I miss having that degree of fun. I miss the indepth conversations, the overwhelming laughter, the inspiration I received from it, as well as overall positives from every nuance, by way of it. But, risking an absolute meltdown, from another bad trip, would certainly mean me being institutionalized and that is something I am simply not willing to do.

I had my fun. I had my inspiration. I had my youth, with typical ignorant fearlessness, and those are the days in which most people benefit from LSD.....until the day comes when someone wants to alter it where there could be other benefits, which are already known. Every experience on LSD is different. That's the beauty of it, same as any other drug. That's also the curse and again, same as any other drug. But, there's something special about LSD. See the examples, below. If these examples don't make my point for me, nothing will.


From paintings......



to musicians that changed how we hear music, and will continue inspiring musicians for generations to come....



to events which introduced new instruments (Moog organ, new stage microphones, etc), new artists and entire new cultures.....





and book authors who changed people's lives, entirely.....



 
Even the software you're now using to view this post, since Bill Gates forgot to trademark it, in the 1980s.....


Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Goodbye, Tennessee! Hello, Florida!

Back in July, after finding out the hard way that the tombstone company was getting away with legally stealing from me, and discovering I would have to sell something from my estate which I never wanted to sell, I decided that I would leave Knoxville, as soon as logically possible. But, as we know, logic will not always follow a physical act.....
Before leaving Knoxville, I had planned to renew the year decal on my license plate, get with my insurance company to see if anything additional information needed to be given before temporarily transferring to a new location, get the front and rear tires switched on the vehicle (front tires are much too bald, on the corners from not having them rotated and balanced, when Jack was in the hospital), front end alignent, etc. July 21 was supposed to be the day I left Knoxville, to stay with 2 very close friends in Pensacola, Florida. Instead, I woke up around 3:15 AM, on the morning of July 20, and was rather disgusted with the fact that I had not slept, yet again, for more than a couple of hours. Had my coffee, then sat and watched some local news. Once that was over, I made a quick breakfast. After that, I sat back down and began putting my list together on what loose ends needed to be tied, before leaving the following day. I began losing concentration, thinking about so many things from the past 4 years that had brought me down to such a low point, what all had caused me to age so terribly, what all had brought my mind to the point where I should not have been able to take my dosage of meds down to the bare minimum (but somehow, it managed to happen), wondering just how numb my mind had become, or if any of the aforementioned played a part in taking me to where I had ended up, or not.
As I continued sitting in my recliner, pondering the bombardment of questions, something in the back of my mind kept inching and budging its way up toward the front. In the beginning of the bombardment, I wasn't aware of what the intrusion was. For a short while beyond the beginning, I still didn't know, because question after question began cropping out spots of my mind. As always, I had allowed my mind to address and/or entertain the scenarios behind questions about my life, be it about the past or the present. The drawback to be doing that is how my mind will almost always end up neglecting what is truly important, because my mind suddenly became occupied from entertaining and/or addressing the past or present. That day is when a change came about.
It was not very long before the unknown something, from the back of my mind, had inched beyond halfway through my mind, and was fast approaching the front. Little by little, the phrase, "GET OUT. GET OUT, NOW!!" began shouting to me, from a distance, though getting louder with each 'scream out' of the phrase, as the passing of time began to fly, and it often does.
By 10:45 AM, the phrase was at the peak of volume and urgency: "GET OUT! GET OUT, NOW!!!!" And, when the shout of that phrase was close enough to the front of my mind, all I could no longer think about what loose ends needed to be tied up, what last minute items needed to be addressed, or even washing the skillet and plate that I used for breakfast.
I stopped just short of jumping out of my chair, and began angrily cramming everything from that room into one bag, after another. I found one of the workers in housekeeping and asked if she wanted a perfectly good 32 inch color television for $20. She called her son to bring the money to her, and he arrived within 15 minutes. Away it went. Had I been thinking any better, I could have sold my recliner for around the same price....a $1200.00 La-Z-Boy recliner, albeit quite an oldie, but in near perfect condition, despite a minimal amount of discoloration along the very front. Since the idea of thinking had left the building, I told the lady in housekeeping to either take it home, or find someone who would, because it was simply too nice to end up in a dumpster. To my knowledge, it was taken.
Suffice to say, I ignored every single loose end that I should have tied up, I ignored doing anything and everything to my vehicle, simply filled up the gas tank and hit Interstate 40/75 around 12:45 PM, to leave Knoxville.
My biggest regret of leaving the state with such a degree of urgency was, is, and always will be the fact that I did not pay a visit to Jack's grave to at least say 'goodbye', in person, ask for blessings as I began my journey south, clean any weeds around the tombstone, then leave. I still feel bad about not making that detour, but I can't turn back the clock.
Once I hit the interstate to head south for Florida, I only made one stop for the entire trip and that was only to refill the gas tank. That took all of less than 10 minutes, and I was back on the interstate, again. Keep in mind that I don't own a GPS, I did not use a map or atlas, and I still pulled into the apartment complex of my destination at 8:00 PM, Central time....just as the sun disappeared from the sky, for the evening. I had my moments of fear, while driving down here....fears about a tire blowing out, fears about a possible coolant leak and/or the oil pump quitting on me, etc, just the average vehicle stuff which us adults over 25 years old begin to think about, while travelling. But, I made it here without a single problem. If there was ever a time when I KNOW Jack was closely watching over me, it was on July 20, 2011. Other than the occassional fear, I went through my route down here as if the vehicle was brand new and drove fast enough that the front tires caused most of the vehicle to slightly jitter. Did I care, at the time (at least for 95% of it)? Hell no. Would I do that, again? Probably not, but then again, I'm not sure because I haven't been presented with that situation again, yet....I would prefer not to ever be presented with a message from the back of my mind that loudly, again, or at least for a very long time.
Within a few days after my arrival, all of who I know in the area came together and took me to the beach for a few hours. Though I was tired beyond belief, I had a wonderful time at the beach, surrounded by 2 people I have known since childhood, and another whom I have known for 15 years. That beach trip, in my opinion, was the ice breaker to my new beginning of life, chapter 2. It was time to happen, I have been through more than enough hell, and I will remember that day at the beach as long as my memory will allow me to recall how good it felt to make a toast, with all involved, to a new beginning.
I still don't know, 100%, if I will be living here or not. What I do know, 100%, is that I will not live in Tennessee, again....at least not in Knoxville. For now, Pensacola is being an incredibly welcoming community and I have already met a few people here. I have a feeling I will like it, here. I hope the feeling will continue. This is now 23 moves in 25 years. My body and mind are so tired, but I am so ready to begin filling up the last half of my life with good memories, great friends, laughter to echo through my mind, peace and happiness, and love for all.
So, here is a repeat of the post title and I mean it: Goodbye, Tennessee! Hello, Florida!




Monday, July 18, 2011

Matters of faith and matters of fact

This is not a post to trash the faith(s) of others. This is not a way, whatsoever, to persuade anyone to think or feel any different than what they already do, about their personal beliefs. So, before this even begins, do keep that in mind.
For those whose faith has served them, be it a well serving or not, I want to say how happy I am that it has done so. It may also surprise you to know that I would probably be one of the first to congratulate you, in person, with the utmost sincerity, for your faith having done so. But, that is where it ends.
I will not try and create a big enough shit storm to cause a wailing unto me, from others, when speaking of why my faith in matters of religion are DOA.
Being Agnostic is: The perception that one cannot prove, OR DISPROVE, the existence of god.
Those of you in America who are reading this: Our constitution, and most of our founding fathers, were indeed Agnostic. It rakes my nerves to hear ignorant people say that god is in the constitution and/or that this country was founded on christian principles. I will say it, quickly: Neither of the those are correct. In fact, the pilgrims who came here did so because they were ready to pursue freedom from Great Brittain, where they faced religious persecution. That is the truth, and you can research for further truth all you want, but if your research involves a credible source, you will not find a further explanation of why anyone, other than possibly Christopher Columbus, ever came here and stole this land from the legitimate and genuine Native Americans.
Little by little, ever since the REAL principle of beginning a new nation became a reality, there are instances which are forever a black eye in the face of what freedoms are supposed to exist, here, the Salem Witch Trials being the very first example that comes to mind. If we want to look further, you can research with little effort and discover how the proactive pursuit and persecution of Jews, Catholics, Buddhists, Hindus (and thesedays, especially Muslims) have been a true embarassment to  amendment number one, of the constitution. It was wrong then, and it is wrong now.
There are those who go through life following the teachings of their faith, closely. For them, I am thankful. For them, and for plenty of you, you represent how it SHOULD be. But understand (and I think this is unfortunate) that you represent the minority. I wish that were not true, but it is.
I wouldn't be surprised if people have convinced themselves that I have no faith in religion because of what all I have written, in this blog, but people would only be partially correct. I grew up in a church, I put my faith in god from a very early age, I confessed by faith for baptism at age 12, and around that age is where the trouble began.
Before you can say something along the lines of, "Well, you should have had enough sense to look through the narrow minded comments of your congregation", and other possible things such as that, realize that THIS, unfortunately, is the MAJORITY (spoken or not) of opinion of people within a church and within christianity. Don't believe me? Go to a few churches, coast to coast, ask members at random how they feel about homosexuality, same sex marriage, and other matters which involve an open mind....but also involve a scripture stating, "Of all these commandments, the greatest is love". I know it's in Romans, but I will not bother looking up chapter and verse. You can do that, on your own. People simply do not seem to get what the teachings of jesus christ are truly about; They are about love, respect, charity (Yes, CHARITY), humility and forgiveness. Those seem to be the hardest things for people to follow. And yes, I am more than aware that many of you are already saying to yourselves, "This is why he died for our sins.".....You know what? Don't even give me that, because it does not take much to at least TRY and follow those teachings, which occured prior to crucifiction. It can be done, probably easier than a great deal within the bible. In fact, I think people break every rule within the ten commandments far more easily than they go against the teachings of jesus christ. I know that this is my opinion, but think about it for a bit.
As for having the faith of a mustard seed: As I said in the beginning of this post, I am glad that your faith has served you well. But as a matter of fact, the only thing a mustard seed has ever done for me is ensure that the taste of a hot dog would improve. But by all means, keep the faith if it works for you. Somehow, I will be just fine. I have made it this far. I will continue to do so.
Peace and love to all, from Paul



Saturday, July 16, 2011

July, 1977: Innocence destroyed

I had an internal debate on whether or not to go here, but I am the one who said I will not waste my time with lies. If the truth is meant to set me free, then I need to continue telling it. I know that this is a dangerous form of 'Physician heal thyself', but I know me better than anyone ever will and I have helped myself, before and I am getting no younger.
This post will not be easy to read, but know that it was much more difficult for me to write.

It was July 1977, when my hell on earth began. I don't remember the exact day. Even if I did, it wouldn't matter. The typical day for me, back then, was waking up to have toast or pop tarts, watch The Gong Show, later, then go outside and begin doing what most kids did, in those days: Actually playing outside. Though I didn't have toys (my toys were records and a coloring book), I still played outside like every other kid. But, this day was different and it was the speck which became a bigger snowball, yeat after year, especially when I finally realized what my orientation was. It made coming to terms with my own truth more difficult than I can ever put to words, here or elsewhere. If you wonder why some kids do drugs and are looking for possible reasons other than peer pressure, here is one possibility:
On that day, in 1977, a group of 4 boys, 2 at a time, walked up to me, grabbed me by my arms, then picked me up by my legs, and put me on the ground, on my back. One had a red Polaroid camera with the strap around his wrist, and they were all laughing in a way I was not familiar with. I originally thought it was going to be a situation where I got the hell beat out of me with a few rubber pieces of Hot Wheels track, so I initially tried to laugh along with them. But, I had no idea how wrong I would become. Besides, I didn't see any of them holding pieces of track.
What was being said, I can't remember. All I can remember is the faint sound of my voice begging them to let me up and to let me go. What I got, instead, was 4 boys who continued the strange laughter while placing a foot on me, 3 of them taking a piss all over me, and the one holding that red Polaroid began taking photos of this incident.
For all I know, the whole thing may not have lasted longer than 2 or 3 minutes. But when you're a kid who is suddenly scared to death of being alive, those 2 or 3 minutes are your whole life flashing before your eyes and you never forget how the heat from the sun began to quickly dry the piss on your arms, part of your neck and face, and begins to cool on your clothing, compared to original body temperature.
You never forget that when those boys walked away, you were still screaming but all your neighbors were either at work or away from home, which is how these boys got away with what they did.
You never forget that by the time you stopped screaming, and a shred of fear began to let up, that first Polaroid photo you pulled off your shirt had tried to begin sticking to your shirt from the heat of the sun and from the chemicals within the photo as it developed and dried.
You never forget that the first thing you thought, after getting up, was to get rid of those photos in a way that only a 9 year old kid understands, but in a place where that kid is positive that no one would ever find them.
You never forget vomitting, right after running into the woods, because the smell of piss from 3 boys is beginning to heat up and, no matter how hard you run to the woods to bury those photos, you can't get rid of the smell.
You never forget how bad the new combination of vomit and piss smells, and you vomit again while poking holes through the photos with a tree limbs that keep breaking, and you have to keep getting new ones because you'll be god damned if your face stays in those photos.
You never forget picking up a rock to dig a hole because you're shaking so hard that you can't dig good enough with your hands (I am now shaking, and making lots of typos, having to backspace like crazy).
You never forget how hard you worked to slam other rocks on top of the newly dug photo grave, in the hopes that the rocks you picked, with moss all over them, will camouflage well enough with other limbs you sat around them, will look as if they had always been there.
You never forget taking your shirt off and wringing piss (and vomit) out of it, but you don't have a strong enough stomach to put it back on, as you thought would happen when you first had the idea to take it off and wring it out.
You never forget running down to the lake and taking the shirt in with you, just to get the piss and vomit out of it.
You never forget how you knew you would have to explain to your mother why you jumped in the lake with all your clothes on, in the first place.
You never forget that no matter how ridiculous your explanation is, your fear of being violated by those 4 boys again is worse than anything your mother could possibly do to you, and that includes her AND your father taking a belt to you (yes, it happened, both of them).
You never forget how you began to shake, every single time you thought about that incident, and do your best to forget it. But, no matter how hard you try, you can't forget it completely.
You never forget the faces of these boys doing what they did, the trails of piss hitting you, the splatter as it hit your clothes, the sick laughter, and photos landing on your clothing as you lay there, unable to get up, because 4 shoes with a foot in each have got you pinned to the ground and you're stuck there, helpless. No one can hear you, no one can get those boys off of you, and you wish you were dead.
This is the day I can't seem to shake, above all others in my life. Even with the passing of Jack, this is still more difficult and I will never understand why, except for the seemingly thin explanation (at least to me) that all possible innocence was lost, on that day, and I never truly recovered from it. If you were never violated or abused, you will never understand....I don't care how many stories like this you hear, or how harshly it may affect you. And by the way, this was not the only time I was violated. But, it WAS the only time that 4 were involved. After that, further violations almost seemed easy, though never acceptable.
And for the record: I have only seen one red Polaroid camera, as an adult. It stopped my normal day, dead. I shook as I walked, and eventually ran away. It erased enough progress of therapy that I ended up back on medication, after being off of it for more than 3 years. I was sick for days, afterwards. I hoped I would never see another one, and luckily have not. Don't expect that I will ever look for an image of one, on a search engine. It's not going to happen.
OK: I have now laid this filthy chapter of my life out for the world to see, and I am done with it. For now, I don't feel better. At this exact moment, I have a familiar feeling of being sick to my stomach that is almost haunting. But, I am now 43 years old and would fight to the death over the possibility of ever being violated again by anyone, anywhere, at anytime.
Carve this much in stone: If I ever see a child being violated, that will be the day I go to prison for murder and will only plead guilty of trying to save a child from a future of misplaced guilt, questions, blame, self-degradation and simply going out of his or her mind from the pain of not being able to fully put it behind him or her. As for adult child molesters, I would gladly kill them for a living. To me, child molesters are the lowest form of 'human' on earth who deserve nothing more or less than immediate death.
All parents: Listen to me, and do everything possible to become fully wise to the possibility that, no matter how hard you may try, the reality of your child being abused by another child is much more of a reality than you comprehend. Watch your children. Watch them closely. Observe the behavior, and call 'bullshit' on whatever it is they are hiding. Take it from someone who has been there, it could make all the difference in their world, for their sanity, and for some, their will to live to see the future.

Peace and love to all, from Paul.




Tuesday, July 12, 2011

With liberty and screw you all

A business should not be allowed to have an advantage over customers where the business can refuse to give a refund, on services not rendered, and hide behind Chapter 11. But, that is exactly what happened to me, today.
I purchased a tombstone from a company with a great reputation, a great introduction and attention to detail from the owner, who spent hours with me on this tombstone. This owner also took a check from me and deposited the check within less than a week of receiving it.
A few months later, I discovered that Jack's sisters had gone behind my back and placed their own tombstone on his grave, as mentioned in an earlier post.
Within a short time, my father passed away and took precedence over everything else in my life, obviously. Shortly after my father's funeral, a batch of tornadoes hit the area where my mother lives, which is where I was staying and I stayed there for close to 2 months. Her mental and physical repair, what little I could help to improve, indeed took precedence over everything else in my life. So, contacting the business owner regarding a refund on this tombstone was placed on the back burner.
I finally returned to Knoxville, last month. I contacted the business owner to let him know that I MUST have a refund on the tombstone. He then stated that he currently did not have the money, but to please give him about 3 weeks to earn it and the money would be refunded. It's not that I trusted the man or not. It's that I figured surely, something could have been done if he did not refund it.
I called him this morning, to let him know that I must have the money by tomorrow (July 13), or I would be in a bad situation. He returned my call this afternoon to let me know that he not only didn't have the money to refund me, but did not know when he would have it.
With that, I quickly went to a website which hosts his, and placed a well-deserved negative review. The review included that this business owner would be filing Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Within 5 minutes of posting the review, I received a call from the business owner stating that since I gave the bad review, he could never attempt to refund the money (More than $1000).
It's quite interesting that it took him close to half a day to return my call from this morning, when it was merely one on one, but took 5 minutes to call back upon me taking my case to the internet and to the public at large.
I don't care where you stand, politically, don't care what god you worship (or not), nor do I care if you own a business or not. The unfair advantage which a business has (as proven here), which can be used to screw a customer out of more than $1000 (which is now the case as of today) is tantamount to theft and that is that.
It's not enough that I can't receive a refund for services not rendered; It also had to include, at least in my case, that I am disabled, widowed, broke and without a permanent address from having to walk away from my home (also discussed in a previous post).
If you think that what is happening as a result of me having to walk away from my home is karma, here's an immediate response to your thought: Fuck you: Repeatedly, fuck you.
YOU live in my mind and body, attempt to walk in my shoes, attempt to pay my bills, keep food in this tiny room, gas in my vehicle (and insurance on said vehicle), along with retaining the common sense and responsibility of an adult, THEN get screwed over to the tune of more than $1000 by a company who can slide on through Chapter 11 and recover with no troubles. This is not, by a longshot, the only business I have heard of who has screwed people over and come out the other side without a scratch on their conscience.
I am more than aware of how unfair life can be. I am certainly not a poster child on how unfair life can be. But, I believe I have endured more than enough, even before now, to qualify as someone who has been repeated given a fucking by life that I have had enough of the unfair advantages by people who either hide behind their money, or with unfair law advantages on their side, and screw the public to the tune of a profit.
This is supposed to be a country of opportunity for people to succeed, according to good practice and common sense, not by means of literally stealing from customers and using it for profit, at a later time.
I have no sympathy for people who do this. I hope for a quick karma to people such as this man.

Here is the link to his business: http://monumentsbydesign.vpweb.com/

This is exactly how I feel:



And this is what should happen to people who screw customers out of money:

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Combing hairs of abstraction

Have you ever walked the outskirts of your mind, just because you could?

Ever float above your body just to see what you really look like, or for any or no reason?

What about when you were in the darkest place of your personal history?

Did you see or do something that you were unaware of, at the time, but now are?

If so, does it now bother you? Do you lose sleep over it? Do you question what it meant, if anything?

How about indifference? If applicable, just how generic was that indifference? Should you wonder whether or not it could be harmful?

About those acutely abstract thoughts you try and deal with, yet end up going nowhere with them: How soon before they begin to leave you feeling emotionally exhausted?

Am I striking a nerve? Have I come too close to that uncomfortable place inside you?

I wont ask, you don't have to tell, but we certainly do keep it all squelched deep within the roots, don't you silently agree?







Thursday, June 30, 2011

Sick feeling in the pit of my stomach

Before this even begins: I have been up all night, no sleep. Some people who end up in this perdicament read books or watch movies. If I'm not listening to music (Slight headache for now, so no music), I am a chronic thinker. I have been guilty of it my entire life. The overprocess of thoughts in my head is probably more important than music and I truly did not think I would ever admit that to anyone.
Another important thing: This post is NOT political. There are some statements which could be taken as such, but the spirit of them are not meant that way. If you take them as political, you will take it the wrong way and should either skip over this post, or stop when you feel it is political, then come back and read the rest after giving it some thought. On with the post.....

I will readily admit that throughout this blog, I have had many complaints about my past and present life in general. I am going to take a detour from what is the norm on here, and put the spotlight on something which has had my attention for several years, but has not come to the forefront until the past year or so.
If there is one thing in the United States today that makes me sick, it's the growing number of homeless families. Most of these people did not pre-determine their futures, as several media outlets are claiming (and that includes plenty of loud mouthed pundits). Most of these people lost their jobs, their businesses, had to live off their savings account and/or 401k, and that is never enough to see someone through. From there, they technically ended up on the street.
From there, these otherwise hard working parents were forced to turn their vehicles into sleeping quarters. I know a little about that, as mentioned in the very first post of this blog.
If these parents are lucky, they find enough part time work to put a down payment on a motel room which they would normally never step foot in, and it becomes their home. Right now, I know a little about that as well. The place I am currently in is not a motel or a hotel, per se`, but is built like one.
This room I have been in, since March 22nd, is about 15 feet by 12 feet which includes the partial kitchenette and bathroom. There is no real closet; Just a 4 inch by 6 inch divider along the wall, beside my bed, with a 24 inch hanger/shelf device that looks like it was bought wholesale from the cheapest distributer of these types of goods.
But you know, I am lucky as hell. I don't have to worry about how my wife/significant other and children are going to handle an adjustment that was never before considered. I don't have to tell my children they will have to occasionally do without what should normally be everyday things, that they may have to live off generic boxes of macaroni and cheese or ramen noodles, etc.
People, this is happening at an astounding and unacceptable rate. Do you not wonder what is happening with all those empty houses? Have you considered that people who cook meth are probably going from one house to another, cooking one night (or day) at one house, then leaving for another house in another town the next?
If there is one thing which should have never again become an epidemic in this country, it's homelessness (History saw enough of this during the depression era). Furthermore, plenty of them are veterans of recent and previous wars. Seeing that they sacrificed their lives for us, this is not what they deserve. I am NOT saying "Oh, let's hand out deeds to homes and set up a nationwide comune just for them". That's not what I'm saying at all. I AM saying that if these people, along with other hard working families, lost everything through no fault of their own and actually through vile, greedy white collar criminals who should be rotting in prison but are instead jetting off to who the fuck knows where, then don't they deserve some type of do-over? Can something NOT be worked out, ever?
When entire families with YOUNG children end up in run down motels in unsavory parts of town, and these kids begin losing sleep night after night, doing worse in school day by day.....can we not do something about this? Isn't there SOMETHING we can do to help these people?
We are still the richest country on earth, don't let anyone tell you different. If anyone reading this thinks otherwise, I'm here to tell you straight up: BULLSHIT. Do NOT tell me that this country is bankrupt. There are quite a number of ways to turn things around, when it comes to the economy.
Truly, this entire subject makes me sick and I'm talking way down in the pit of my stomach.
Here I am, in my tiny but workable room, in a VERY safe part of town (One of the safest, if we're talking about an area not part of a gated community), on the second floor with the elevator maybe 15 steps away from my door, I can see my vehicle from my window, etc. In my heart of hearts, I know how much better I really do have it, even if we're talking about the quality of the room alone, than many of these families.
If giving a complete damn about people I don't know makes me a liberal, then I guess I'm a liberal who also firmly believes in the death penalty, firmly believes in the right to own a gun (I happen to have one about 8 feet away from me, in fact), believes that street justice is sometimes the only justice, and firmly believes that any child molester, male OR female, should be shot and killed by one of the parents or the next of kin.
Bottom line: If we as a people don't begin to rally around these families, we should not dare to be surprised when some of these parents become desparate enough about feeding their children that they rob, steal, even kill to do it. And think about that for a minute.....If it were your children, how far would YOU go to make sure they don't go without? Didn't take you long to think about it, right?
For the record: I am eligible for food stamps but don't have them, eligible for section 8 housing but don't receive it, probably eligible for electric and water bill assistance but don't receive it, and that's because I know for a fact there are people who need that help far more than I do. THEY should get it first. I am single with no children, so I can wait. In fact, I SHOULD wait.
I may be down to counting change, but my disability check will electronically deposit tomorrow. I have health insurance, though state sponsored (Hey...I paid in my taxes just the same as you. I earned this shit). I may not be able to afford groceries right now, but I have 9 full meals in the freezer. I probably have what is needed to make at least 4 more, from there...possibly more if I weren't so tired and could think a little further. I have more than enough coffee. I have close to a half tank of gas in my vehicle. All of my nice clothes are clean. I still have enough medication (for now). I am using a brand new notebook computer. I have a brand new printer (Don't judge about the new tech items and me counting change. YOU sit in this room before you judge.). I have about 30 CDs and my portable CD player is hooked up through a nice set of Panasonic computer speakers (old school 80s stuff, no cheap surround sound effect on these). My cell phone is paid for the month and I have a huge stack of photos of Jack and my family. Moreover, my estate is safe and guarded by not only a 24 hour monitoring system (saw the whole thing working when I signed up the lease) but also with the owner living on the property, and the entire property is surrounded by 15 feet tall fencing with looped razor wire along the top. I pay dearly for that storage unit, but the estate is well worth it.
So all in all, I'm in damn good shape for a widow who is broke as hell. However, that does not change perdicaments of all the homeless families I mentioned. I have a HUGE guilty chip on my shoulder, when it comes to them. Often, I have thought about trying to find a family and at least feed them...because honestly, there is no real room for comfortable sleep in here unless someone is sleeping with me, and I have a strict rule about my that: If you're not my significant other, you're NOT sleeping in my bed.
Please, take the time to watch the video I have included on here. If you are not genuinly moved by what you see, I can't help but wonder if you have a bigger mental problem than me.
Thank you for taking the time to read what I find to be a bother, and wish I could do something to help them all. I wish all of you good life, good health, and may you never end up without a home. But remember one thing: It CAN happen to you, I don't care how well prepared you think you are. You are capable of losing everything. Don't think you're not.
Peace and love to all.



Sunday, June 19, 2011

Pride Day, Fathers Day, Summer Of Loathe

I am now beyond the 6 month mark of what is supposed to be the second part of my life. Honestly, I have no idea where to begin except to continue with this blog. It is one of the few things which truly keeps me grounded and helps me to concentrate on something positive....and right now, that focal point is extremely difficult. I have quite a bit of hate built up in me from what all has taken place over the past 4 years. I will get to that a little later in the post.

Today is Pride Day, in Knoxville. I have no intention of going, though I had thought about it during the week. Several who know me might say that I still have a problem with who and what I am. If that's the case, those several need to learn about me a little better. I've been quite comfortable in my skin, since I came out....but I came out in my own way, and I'm not in any way a textbook example of anything.

How I feel about Pride Day, in general: If it's true that we were 'born this way', what exactly is it that I'm supposed to celebrate for only one day? If others want to throw a parade for themselves, more power to them. I, personally, don't need one to justify and embrace who and/or what I am, or what I may be in the future. I don't look down on those who participate in one, but we don't seem to agree on much of anything in the first place. As I have previously stated....I don't like bars, I don't cruise parks, I really don't care for stage plays or musicals, my favorite songs are NOT show tunes, my favorite artist is NOT Lady Gaga, I don't follow trends, I don't like being gawked upon as if I'm a piece of meat in a butcher shop and I definitely didn't get the memo on what is butch/fem, nor do I give a shit.

What I think Pride Day is really about, under the surface of it all, is repeating the march which occured after the Stonewall Riot (New York City, June, 1969). If I'm wrong, go ahead and correct me. I don't think I am, but the invitation to set me straight without debate is open.

Today is also Fathers Day. This may sound cold, but I'm glad that my father isn't here to suffer any longer in a nursing home (especially the first one he was in), to see how selfish people are getting to be, and how the country that he fought for and worked 32 years to help sustain with military security is fading away. He went through enough as a child; His father abandoned him, his sister, and his pregnant mother who had relocated to a shipyard in Brunswick, Georgia, to make a better living for herself and her children. Dad was 11 years old when this happened. His mother had no choice but to work long enough to pay for bus tickets back to Gadsden, Alabama (only an hour away from their hometown), then had to stay there and work a little longer to pay for bus tickets back to Guntersville. They were in Gadsden long enough that my father and his sister were temporarily enrolled in a school, down there. This took place in the mid 1940s.

People seem to think that the Great Depression ended somewhere close to the mid 30s, and this should serve as proof of how false that thought is. Some families struggled from the wrath of the depression all the way into the late 50s and early 60s. Jack's family was a prime example of ones who struggled much longer than average.

As for the hate I have got built up in me: See if you would feel any better if these barnacles were stuck to your plate.....August, 2007, dad went into a nursing home. August, 2009, I found mine & Jack's room mate in her bed, dead. She was only 49 years old. September, 2010, Jack went into the hospital. November, 2010, one of my best friends (Ruth Anne Lankster) passed away from kidney damage. She was only 44. December, Jack passed away. January, an uncle passed away. March, I had to vacate my home and give my dog away. April, dad passed away and within a week, tornadoes hit the southeastern states. I was in Alabama for close enough to 2 months.

I am tired, I am upset, and I am thouroughly pissed, though I do my best to keep a positive attitude. But, I hate the so-called quality of life which has been dumped in my lap. I hate the way I feel, most of the time. I hate that I feel this way at all. I hate that the place I have called home for more than 12 years no longer feels like home to me....and after being gone from my hometown for more than 16 years, it still does not feel like home either.

I hate Jack's 2 sisters for going behind my back and putting a tombstone on his grave which does not contain both of our names on it (Cheapest piece of shit tombstone they could locate). I hate that I want to drive over to the sister's house, who lives in Knoxville, and burn her fucking house to the ground. I hate that I want to gather up their mother's recipes, burn them to a crisp and mail her the ashes. That same hate goes for a set of clear glass serveware, only I want to mail it to her so busted up that it's back to sand. This serveware is so old that you can see tiny bubbles in the glass. There are other things I could destroy and mail the results of to her, but in the end, I don't want to hear shit from her, or the one that lives elsewhere.

I hate that my stomach cawls at what Jack's words were on the possibility of anyone going behind my back or his, and defying his burial wishes....I was instructed, in the event of defiance of his burial wishes, to dig up his urn and transfer it to MY family's graveyard (which is now severed). I hate that I don't have it in me to go and follow through with his wish. I mostly hate that after more than 16 years, his family still decided among themselves that I don't deserve being given any trust. I hate them, period. May they all freebase methane from a fresh cow queef, as far as I'm concerned.

Indeed, there is too much hate in the world. I should probably be ashamed for harboring this much hate, but I'm not. I feel like a dog that has been repeatedly smacked in the nose with a Sears and Roebuck catalog, blood has run down my face until I can taste it, and all I want to do is attack. I don't like feeling this way, at all. But, I especially don't like being shit on by others who say one thing at a funeral, and do plenty behind my back to make it where I never want to go around them ever again. I have no doubt that this was their plan, all along, but that doesn't make dealing with it any easier.

So here I sit in this tiny room with weekly rates, all of my estate in storage, miniscule money to my name, a vehicle that needs repair before leaving the state, and a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach. Sue me if you would feel any other way, or react differently, given the above matters of the black heart. I just can't come to terms with this, yet.

Yes, this is my Summer Of Loathe and I hate it. But, at least I told you the truth.

(*Update: I was unaware that Knoxville Pride was postponed until June 26. Not sure why. Still not going.)





RIP, Dad! Happy Fathers Day! Love you!




Jack, this photo is beyond awesome. Love you and miss you!!!!



Summer Of Loathe....

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Year 43, Day 1

For those who aren't aware, today is my birthday. I am 43, but it may as well be 100.
For the record, I stopped celebrating it a very long time ago. Many things in my life are dear to me, important enough to celebrate, and important enough to bring attention to, repeatedly....but, my birthday is not one of those things. It just isn't.

Today's events, in order:

Woke up around 7:30 AM with my nose completely stopped up
3 oversized mugs of coffee, and my nose began to clear
Avoided the news, because I don't want to hear about who said what about whom, or what promises have been broken, let alone hear anymore 'what we need' speeches from anyone, Republican or Democrat. Enough, already....and that hasn't even begun, yet.
Watched a few old programs
Got a shower, got dressed, took off to visit a few people only to find that one is taking care of someone who is waiting for a room in hospice care...and another who is so sick that he was afraid to let me in (did not sound good). Another is out of town, another has a neighbor's tree sitting on her roof and was fighting with her insurance company.
After the last one, I decided to let the attempts at visiting go (for now), and took a trip to my favorite grocery store. After seeing what all I had put in my cart, and it suddenly dawning on me that I was no longer buying goodies for 2 (Jack and I), I began putting things back and began having to fight off an anxiety attack....and this fight was one of the toughest I have ever endured.
I'm not sure how I made it through the checkout stand without having an anxiety attack, but the tears were inevitable. They were further inevitable on my drive back to my room, where I now am.
Since I have been back here, a headache has begun. I hope this one will not require medication, but it wants to become heavy.

I guess the heavy headache is directly connected to me suddenly carrying a very heavy heart.
I did not go to the liquor store, and I have not taken any extra medication (yet). I want to see if I can make it through the rest of the day without either/or.
Perhaps that is the present I should give myself, even if it requires laying down and sleeping the rest of the day away.
Time will tell, as it always does.
Happy Birthday to me.....


Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Six months ago.....

For my better half:

Today is 6 months ago that I lost you.

These are the things I need to say:

Know that regardless of how much I may improve, my heart will never be whole again

Know that you're the reason I chose to live

Know that you're the reason I allowed myself to love again

Know that it pains me, profusely, living without you

Know that it will take a very long time for me to find myself again

Know that I am still in shock over the loss of you

Know that I will mourn the loss of you for the rest of my life

Know that even if I do find someone else, that someone will always be no more than second best

Know that the gifts you gave me are worth more than anything anyone could ever try and give me, in my entire lifetime

Know that I continue, daily, to remember things about us that I forgot along the way

Know that this will be a very tough day for me, but I will get through it

Know that the world was a better place with you in it

Know that I will always be thankful for everything you did for me and for us

Know that I loved you  ♥


                                                                       
Jack Burton
                                                
September 12, 1938 - December 9, 2010

"Love is not what you think or see. It's what you feel."

                                                                   September 7, 1995




Thursday, May 19, 2011

Dreaming in color

It happens quite often, yet I don't know what it means
So often it's in color, vivid and meaningless dreams
Maybe if I understood the pain I felt
Perhaps if I could make sense of the hand I've been dealt

But this pain can be so unbelievably immense
And my thoughts run amok, frequently vile and intense
What should be a day of joy, it began so well
Within no time at all and for no reason, shot to hell

Mother asked this morning, "At home, do you have any close friends?"
Do these kinds of painful questions ever come to an end?
All I have needed is time to air out my mind
Instead, it's a barrel of inquiries so crass and unkind

Some days, I feel I should just change my name
But what would that do for me, when the end result stays the same?
At one time, the change would have made sense
But that time is now a fact of past tense

So if these technicolor dreams have something to say
I wish they would speak, or just go the hell away
My mind has had enough for this one cruel day
On that note, I'll clean the house of my short-lived stay



Saturday, May 14, 2011

Saying hello

To all of my blog readers:

I apologize for seeming as if I have abandoned the blog. I have not.

There have been lots of things going on in my life, over the past month. That's quite an understatement, actually, but let's go with it anyway.

I am currently not at home, and have not been for the past month.

The situations which have taken me away from home have taken up most of my time and have not given me enough thought space to post anything, and I gave my own self a rule that as long as I can help it, I will not put out a cheap and ill-conceived blog post. I can only hope that I have lived up to that rule, but I will allow all of you to decide if that is the case or not.

I will be returning home, very soon. Believe me, there will be plenty of posts to come, and a great deal of it will be based on both old and new information, as well as situations which also involve old and new info.

Thank you so very much for taking any kind of interest in me, for your understanding during my time of absence, and hopefully I will repay all of you by being able to pick up where I left off, with giving what I promised I would give.

See you soon. Peace and love to all from Paul!