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:

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?