Thursday, January 31, 2013

Lyrically Speaking

"Killing Me Softly"
Strumming my pain with his fingers,
Singing my life with his words,
Killing me softly with his song,
Killing me softly with his song,
Telling my whole life with his words,
Killing me softly with his song ...I heard he sang a good song,
I heard he had a style.
And so I came to see him to listen for a while.
And there he was this young boy, a stranger to my eyes.
Strumming my pain with his fingers,
Singing my life with his words,
Killing me softly with his song,
Killing me softly with his song,
Telling my whole life with his words,
Killing me softly with his song ...I felt all flushed with fever,
embarrassed by the crowd,
I felt he found my letters and read each one out loud.
I prayed that he would finish but he just kept right on ...
Strumming my pain with his fingers,
Singing my life with his words,
Killing me softly with his song,
Killing me softly with his song,
Telling my whole life with his words,
Killing me softly with his song ...
He sang as if he knew me in all my dark despair.
And then he looked right through me as if I wasn't there.
But he just came to singing,
singing clear and strong.
Strumming my pain with his fingers,
Singing my life with his words,
Killing me softly with his song,
Killing me softly with his song,
Telling my whole life with his words,
Killing me softly with his song ...
He was strumming, oh, he was singing my song.
Killing me softly with his song,
Killing me softly with his song,
Telling my whole life with his words,
Killing me softly with his song ...
With his song ...
a girl once told me this song made her think of me. I kind
of know why although, I can assure you she did not hear me sing!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Kevin: My Life And Hard Times: An Autobiograpghy

I was born a poor black child... Ha, I'm kidding. Well, I was born and I was poor, but the other part isn't true. Bridgeport TX played host to my birth and the hospital which saw me in was torn down years ago. The doctor who delivered me was well known for the number of babies he delivered in our area (3000+). Some of my strongest nursing memories are for the interaction of he and I years later. My mom named me from two boys in the newspaper. She did not recall the context of the article(s). I imagined them as street racers who died a fiery death on some back road or as recon specialists with the First Cavalry Division in The Nam.

When I came home from the hospital it was to a dairy my dad worked. I stopped and took pictures of it once after I found out where it was. It was torn down just weeks later.

When we moved in about my second year it was to a tiny house that we referred to as the house between the highways. It was between 287 and business 287 in Decatur. There is a tire store there now. When I was about 18 months old I got out of the house somehow and crossed 287 and was found in the median. The subject came up often- at least into my 30s and after the story would be told, blame would be laid and fingers pointed by those whose negligence nearly resulted in my very early demise. I think it freaked everybody out a little how close they came to losing their little snow flake.

My earliest memory I suppose is man landing on the moon. Everyone kind of rolled their eyes when I innocently mentioned that in front of family as an adult. They could only say,"Oh, I guess you're right." When I recounted in detail everything that happened- my brother took pictures of the tv and recorded the sound on a reel to reel tape recorder, my dad basically telling him that it was dumb to go to the trouble etc.

My best friend and I met the first day of first grade and I got lost on the way home from his house that same day. We had planned most of our childhood to own a used car lot when we grew up. He died in his early 20s. We were planning on bringing him to Germany where I was serving. When he died I was literally lost- in the back of my mind I'd never intended to do anything after the Army but have that car lot there in our home town.

He has been dead most of 30 years and it still literally stops me dead in my tracks and causes my chest to hurt when he crosses my mind.

I had a crush on his sister like no other. We later tried to ruin each others lives by acting on that years and years later. She was pretty and smart- incredibly smart and made tons of money. She was the first woman to ask me to marry her.

From the very early grades if something was wrong with the equipment in a classroom I would look at it and often be able to fix it. Honestly- if I went to the janitor and asked for WD40 or a wrench, a light bulb etc. he would just hand it off to me without asking me anything. He would also asked me to help him with things if he caught me in the hall and in fact ask teachers for permission to pull me out of class sometimes. He was called Froggy. His last name may have been Taylor. He was very elderly and had huge ears and wore overalls every day. He was a very sweet old guy. I'm glad I don't have to live with even thinking a mean thought about that man.

My favorite teacher was a student teacher. I think his name was Minton. He was a C130 gunship crewman in Vietnam. The Renshaw ladies were better to me than I deserved. Mrs McDonald was a music teacher who lived near me. She had a beautiful sloping lawn. When she would play the piano with the window open I'd lie on the ground outside the window and listen while reading.

My classroom was less than 5 minutes from my house. When the last commercial on the Three Stooges would start if I took off running at that exact moment I could then be in my classroom and have time take a couple of breaths before the bell rang.

All I ever wanted to be was a soldier. I can see the news of the fall of Saigon April 30 1975 like the TV is setting in front of me now. I asked my dad to the effect,"Where will I go for a war now!?" He laughed and said,"Son, I'm sure you'll be able to take your pick of wars."

I have in my lifetime: owned a fire hydrant and held a live (and very angry) badger by the tail.

Things I have done that you have not: fired an M60 machinegun, 1917 Browning machinegun, a full auto M14, M3 greasegun, 1914 Thomspon submachine gun, BAR, M1 Garand and M16- all in a single day.

Something else I've done that you have not: a donut in a Camaro- inside a National Guard Armory.

OK one more- single handedly swept and mopped the entire drill hall floor of a National Guard Armory.

One day in the living room as I walked by my trusty golden retriever I impulsively hiked my leg and cut one in his face. He started gagging- not in a clearing his throat, I'll be OK- just give me a sec. guys. kind of way- in a back arching, I simply do not know how he kept from yakking on the carpet kind of way. I hadn't noticed my girlfriend (who would later become my wife) was walking behind me and witnessed my vile act and my poor dogs response. She started gagging. Omigod you're sooo stupid Reeeaack, and disgusting. I can't believe... Rack rack, ooof. Oh my God, you're sick. She turned back down the hall and barely made it to the bathroom before losing her cookies.

Yes, I once made a dog gag and a girl vomit.

My best friend was murdered by another friend. He shot him in the head. The bullet impacted the crown of his forehead right between his eyes. When I think it about it I can still smell Mike's brains on the mantle.

My dad was a strange mix of good and evil.

After his death I went into a tail spin and lost myself for a while. Then I found myself on the East-West German border. I turned 21 on guard duty on the border. Like Decatur, I still consider the city where I lived in Germany a home town. I was very adept at the language and was always used as an interpreter for simpler stuff. When I came home I overheard someone asking a cop in German and very broken English for directions. I was able to ask them where they were from, muddle my way through directing them and wish them well.

Two hi lites of my service in the Army were that I served in both the 1st Cavalry Division and the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment. They were both units I studied and fantasized serving with from the time I was a little boy. The two disappointments of my peace time service were being accepted into 1st Cav's horse platoon after a test ride and grueling interview, but not being released by my unit to serve and not being allowed to attend Ranger school and get assigned to a Ranger Battalion due to my serving in a critical military occupation specialty.

I could tell you what that specialty was, but then I'd have to kill you.

Younger, pretty Mexican and black women tend to be attracted to me.

I have attended an outdoor performance of  Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture where the BOOM part in the music was played by the firing of an actual Napoleon cannon.

When I meet Meatloaf as I assume we all will some day, I'll say, Do you remember being hit in the face by the Bota bag of wine in Mannheim Germany in 1986? Dude, I'm sorry- you just looked hot and thirsty! He will say, Don't sweat it man. That swig of cold French wine saved my life. Do you want a job as a roadie? I can only pay you a hundred thousand dollars a year.

While no genius, I possess above average intelligence and have a vocabulary that's roughly twice that of the average American.

I have broken: left arm, fracturing both arm bones at my elbow (motorcycle wreck) two toes of my right foot, pinky finger left hand and nose (football), pinky finger right hand and knuckle (fighting), L1 vertebrae and torn ACL (hurt in Iraq). I have some high frequency hearing loss and my ears ring constantly (being proximal to blasts in Iraq). I guess that covers my list of serious personal injuries.

In my life I've been a dishwasher, HVAC tech, carpenter, mechanic, floral design assistant, and delivery driver, city water treatment operator, maintenance worker at a water park, concrete worker, self employed landscaper, electronics technician for Boeing Defense, heavy equipment operator, pharmacy technician, soldier and nurse.

I would have done something else also- something that may have made my fortune, but Clinton's tax increases literally crushed me.

In another life I would have probably been a pretty good: doctor, lawyer, farmer, wildlife biologist, constructor, scientist (researching optics, light and/or weapons), engineer, teacher, cop or firefighter.

OK, I get it- throw in astronaut for good measure.

When I've taken those tests that determine your aptitude for careers, it always come out that I would be well suited for some form of: law enforcement, teacher or military officer.

The JP who married my wife and I was named Plum Rasbury.

Nursing caught my interest both because of interaction with nurses while my eldest was in the hospital as a baby and getting tired of being rained out in my construction work. I am a very good nurse. Presently I do hospice. You know you have a good job when you'd do it for free, but you get paid pretty well to do it.

The job I was working before nursing was a close second in greatness. It was conservation work- building flood control structures. I loved it. There are lakes in the middle of nowhere I helped build that 100 years from now people will be swimming in and fishing from. I also worked on the rebuild of Kickapoo Lake dam. I also worked on the DFW expansion building runway 7L and refinishing Throckmorton Country Club's golf course. In my time in earthen construction I personally moved over 300,000 tons of our world from one place to the next.

My wartime service was a hi lite of my life. I had been out for 5 years when I read the Texas National Guard was mobilizing.  News of the mobilization came from the paper while I was working nights at my nursing job. I told my wife, "The entire division is mobilizing  The scout platoon was specifically mentioned in the paper. I'm sorry, I have to go." she said,"What can I say? I've always known you'd have to go if a war started." You could be killed!", everybody else said. You could be killed crossing the street and anyway, I'd rather die on a battlefield than live at home knowing my country needed me. Also, I had a weird sense If I went, some kid with a future wouldn't have to go.

I did my job well while downrange, made a lot of friends and had a good reputation among soldiers in my unit, even those I did not work with directly. My call sign was CombatKevin. I was also known as CK. Other past military nicknames in various units and postings were Predator, Mr. Clean, Hammer, Kevron and Kevmeister. There are a few others, but I don't know you that well yet. You can determine how well liked or hated you are in the military by the prominence, playfulness and/or viciousness of your military nicknames.

Downrange I got hurt and am now considered disabled. That's been the biggest hit of my life- going from benching 300 pounds free weight (with an under 200 lb frame), to if I pick up Zac incorrectly I'll go straight to the floor. From having 18+ inch biceps with a 44 inch chest to being skinny. From washboard abs to almost having a belly. From being able to run 2 miles in under 14 minutes, to if I forget and take off running to my car while it's raining I'll yelp and get soaked shambling to the car after I hurt myself trying to run. From being kind of a stud at softball and tennis to some days doing well to get from point A to point B...

Sometimes I have to use a cane. Although, the cane has flames going down the sides and can be folded up and placed in my backpack. It's not as cool as you might think though.

The psychiatrist I saw when I cam home from Iraq was named Elizabeth Taylor.

My mom loved me like crazy although she admitted it was hard since I was so much like my dad. If I went out and picked mulberries from the tree in the front yard she'd bake me a little individual cobbler out of them with sugar and biscuit dough. She was 90 pounds of pure, fierce determination. She lived to be 80 years old in spite of smoking like a freight train all her life, although many of her last years were miserable.

She died at 6 o'clock in the morning.

I still miss her.

Weird things about me: I have a vague, gnawing fear I'll someday break my left left leg midway up my shin. Roller coasters terrify me (don't tell anybody, but I've lost consciousness on them- literally- I fainted dead away) Occasionally, I practice writing with my left hand in case for whatever reason I ever lose function in my right. Peanut butter is one of my favorite foods, but the smell of it nauseates me if I smell it while not actually eating it. I have a crazy good memory, although it is tied to a very hard auto delete function. For instance, in my nursing if I'm told I'm cancelled on a patients case and then get surprised by being reassigned two days later to the same person, I may have to ask for the address again as I may simply have no recall of exactly how to get to their house.

I am very good friend and neighbor. Although I don't think I've ever intentionally betrayed a confidence I have trusts a time or two- like everybody has I suppose. The knowledge of those failures though, has made me a better friend than I was capable of otherwise.

I never lie and have only told two in the past 20 years.

My best friend in the world is a published author and screenwriter. We hunt together and share secrets no one else in the world will ever know. He bought me a very nice shotgun once because I was in a tailspin over a horrendous loss in my life- just because he thought it would make me feel better.

Headaches rarely bother me- maybe once or twice a year.

In another life I was a foster parent.

My children are all very smart, funny, interesting, good looking, well built, kind people. My eldest has enlisted in the Army and my 4 year old has stated his intention to do same. My daughter says she wants to be a nurse.

If my youngest hadn't come into my life by now I'd probably be living in Puerto Rico where I would be writing: my autobiography which would mostly be for my family, a horror story idea I've had for years which is so heinous it would get an X rating and be banned in schools and finally, a war novel set in Iraq based on enlargenated versions of my own experiences and war stories other guys told me which might be pretty good.

Generally speaking if I'm well enough suited for an endeavor I don't generally fail at it if I apply myself at all. Also, I'm real good at self assessments- so I'm not real used to dealing with failure. My marriage was a failure. When asked I sometimes say to the effect,"We were two pretty smart people who together could figure out a lot- accomplish a lot and do really smart things, but we acted very foolish in ways and lost it all- we threw it all away." We knew each other for most of our lives- such a shame.

I've spent the last few years figuring out who I am and where I'm going. I've come to the conclusion my best and my worst times are probably ahead of me. In short- I am a human being.

Thanks for reading world. I love you in spite of yourself. I wish you the best and will do whatever I can for you- just ask.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Thursday's Thoughts

So ugly it is beautiful

The 30 mm cannon fires about 4000 rounds a minute. When you hear it at night in your tent you feel warm all over.

Desert Storm kill markings

With a 1000 pound titanium bathtub and controls routed and armored for protection against ground fire it is unbelievably tough. This aircraft flew back to base after getting chewed up over Baghdad in 2003.

  • Flying Arrow Cam
  • Aquarium owner pro tip: If you stop feeding your fish occasionally for 12 or even 24 hours they'll be healthier (beware though- smaller fish may, umm, disappear). The same goes for keeping the water temp. at the lowest your most cold tolerant species is supposed to tolerate. It will increase the life spans of all your fish.
  • Coffee breath is nauseating to me.
  • When we think about interpersonal relationships with people I believe there are 4 things always true about the others past and/or character. I call these the Four Theres: There are things we should know. There are things we don't want to know. There are things that are none of our business. There are things we think that matter but really they don't. I'm sure friend-girl is a virgin and I'm not really sure where that information falls within the preceding 4 truths.
  • We're going to see Jim Gaffigan at The Majestic in San Antonio. Tickets alone will be nearly 300 bucks. Good grief.
  • When I have a house with an over toilet cabinet I always stash a couple of rolls of toilet paper in there.
  • I think a rotisserie is a really morbid Ferris Wheel for chickens- Mitch Hedberg
  • I still love the A10 Warthog. It has been around since 1976 and at 1994 costs of about 12 million a unit is an absolute bargain. It was basically mothballed until we engaged in The Long War. Interestingly, it was assumed it would suffer a 7-10% loss rate against Soviet forces in the conventional  anti armor role on a European battlefield it was built for. Some folks think that number was way optimistic and I tend to agree.  The Air Force basically said, We can't afford those losses and anyway, the Soviet Union fell apart so we're parking these bad boys. The Army said,"Uh, can we have them? The Air Force said, And give up our monopoly on fixed wing attack aircraft and take the chance of looking lame compared to a bunch of Army pukes when a cool shooting war breaks out? I don't think so dude.Thankfully they kept a few flying. With the air supremacy it enjoys now it is an awesome close air support aircraft. I used to work with a lady whose son when the Air Force was phasing the 10s out left the Air Force, joined the Army and learned Apaches. How can that be? How can anybody be that cool while I'm so lame?
  • Another interesting thing about the A10- there is no 2 seat trainer aircraft for them. As a pilot friend said, If you can fly a Cessna 172 you can fly an 10. The Air Force hires guys with lots of hours in civilian aircraft puts them in a sim for a bunch of hours then they put them in an A10 and they take off.
  • 36- the number of hours Billy Idol's Cradle Of Love has been playing in a loop in my brain.

Next Blog Foray

"I started to play guitar, when i was only 9 years old, my father gave me the acoustic guitar. I always enjoyed that strange music of my father, like rock progressive; then i found the position of the notes in the guitar. When i was 15 years old, i got my first electric guitar, it was awesome, i discovered new sounds, so I began to use my influence, is the way to improve my creativity. In this case it was metal! the new musical age of my youth. As soon as i learned guitar lessons ; i studied in a high school music. I didn't know how to play the piano, but the teachers gave me piano lessons , it was interesting for me .Now a days, i play the bass guitar with my band but i don't forget the guitar and piano lessons.Is the way to survivor for me; sometimes I practice the piano because I don´t have one. But always I practice the electric guitar, is the first instrument that I learned to play. As I learned to play guitar,then I played the bass, is similar than the guitar but in this case you have only four chords, the sound is more low heavy and you play the main melody in order to the guitar can improve the passages. We practiced on weekends and sometimes we play in others places of the country. We like to meet new peolpe and diferent places, by the way,for these months we get a tour in diferents dates. I hope so it will be fun je. "
Publicado por Paolo en 23:27 0 comentarios

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Turner Falls Take Two

Early AM at the Blue Hole. All these small mouth bass were oriented downstream and slightly in toward the bank they were near when I approached. The ones who are out of phase to the others moved only due to my presence.

Parasitic mistletoe infestation

Generations of hikers have referred to this rock as the Dragon's Tooth.

I was kidding about that last bit of lore but this really is Mormon Tea

Raccoons often eat on a log that has fallen over a creek. Their dooky then fills a rotted out knot hole. I'm not sure if this is intentional or just coincidence

Zac called this machete his big pocketknife

DPs made more delicious and nutritious by soaking in the creek overnight

View from the back porch

Zac begins his assault on the mountain behind the cabin. When he left he said, Dad, I'm going to climb the mountain behind the cabin. How many kids in the history of ever have said that?

His bid for the summit was thwarted by an injury. He booped his head on an overhang. Here he begins his descent free without ropes or support of any kind dispirited but not defeated. He will return next climbing season.

I think Mr Scuba Diver looked like more of a tool than he realized

Rat that did his macabre dance with death and met his demise in one of the water filled rock features. The water here is probably 2-3 feet deep and only discolored by the tannin from the leaves

Gravel pit cause by softer stone being swirled against harder stone over eons of time

Water skimmer skiing over Rat Fink's dead body

Yep, that is my boot as I traverse a very shaky cedar log over just nearly frozen water

I've mentioned that our south of the border friends had found TF. Spanish language graffiti  and food and drink garbage are everywhere.

I don't know what this is I found it near Honey Creek.

Sunset over a farm house on the way home. I think it was near Valley View

  • OK, I'm reluctantly trying this again.
  • There is a cactus splinter in my right pinky  that I had no idea was there until just now. 
  • My vision is blurry and I have a bit of a headache and I don't know why. I've tried a warm, relaxing bath, counting to ten and counting my blessings in case it is a symptom of elevated BP to no avail.
  • The cabin was OK. The biggest downside was the drunk couple next door doing it until the wee hours of the morning. I finally drowned her squeals out by turning the TV and ceiling fan on and turning the heater fan on high. Friend-girl slept through their antics so I gave her a play by play the next morning with a passable imitation of her sound effects. As you could guess we bumped into them everywhere we went the next day. He would turn red and mumble and she would look at everything but us and pull furiously at her cigarette and Keystone Light when we would see them and offer a greeting. I'm not sure if they just knew we had to hear their antics and after they sobered up were embarrassed or if they heard my interpretive reenactment of their escapades through the cabin wall the next morning.
  • Another slight drawback- the satellite service had one usable station and eleventy billion channels of infomercials and cooking shows- ridiculous.
  • I caught a crawdad. In it's torpid state I must have assumed I could get away with handling it lackadaisically  That is how the crayfish laughs at you man. It pinched the fire out of me. I jumped around in a circle hollering, Son of a ... and God... while Zac and friend-girl back away from me with their mouths hanging open looking at me like I was a crazy person. After a minute or two it drew up, lost it's color gasped a few times and seemed to expire. When I threw it back in the water after several seconds it came to and went about it's crawdad business. I don't know what mechanism causes that to happen but they do seem to rapidly expire when in a torpid state they're removed from cold water. I have seen it happen multiple times.
  • We went to two areas I've never been before. An interesting thing I noted was how the nature of trails change the further way from the park proper we got. The trails seemed more rational- you may arguably take a step or two extra here and there but they were less strenuous and safer. They were obviously made by people who knew more about hiking than most of the visitors to the park.
  • Me to friend-girl: Take your Keurig if you want. She: Really?! Me: Well, yeah, we'll be in a cabin miles from town and confidence is high we'll be wanting a cup of coffee in the morning. She: You're right that's a great idea! Want me to bring a toaster? Me: nothing but a blank, dumb look... She: Oh, uh- wow, where did that even come from? Is that the dumbest question you've ever been asked? Me: Nah, I've been asked lots of dumber questions lots of times. Why just last year a girl asked if she should pack an aquarium and two or three others have offered to bring vacuum cleaners.
  • I must look competent in that environment, 2 or 3 people asked me directions or other questions.
  • I can spot a veteran from a mile off and can usually tell very quickly if they were Army or Marines and if they were support or combat arms troops. The first time it happened if we hung out you would tell me I'm retarded and there is no way a person could know all that. Then I'd be proven correct enough times and you would understand it is just another one of my superpowers.
  • Wish you were there. Thanks for reading. 

Monday, January 21, 2013

Turner Falls

Somehow after spending over 2 hours picking great pics and thinking of clever stories related to our Turner Falls trip with my finger hovering over the mouse pad I somehow pushed the wrong key and deleted everything. I think I'm going to be sick. I'll come back to it later for now I'm going to put this machine away and decide if I want to have a stroke or a myocardial infarction over it.

Saturday, January 19, 2013


This image comes up with a search for Jeterville Texas pictures

Occasionally Barry reposts a comment somebody made about their memories of Jeterville. It involved Stevie Nicks, a tour bus and the smell of weed.  It always makes me think of that place. I dream of Jeterville often- 2 or 3 times a year I would say, although I don't know exactly why.
 When I was little Decatur was dry and drinkers made road trips to Jeterville to buy beer. For that matter a thing back then was when people were going to Colorado they would take orders and bring back a trunk full of Coors. I don't know if it was not sold here in Texas then (which I doubt) but it is true they would do that. I can remember an uncle's (who incidentally died day before yesterday) car trunk literally brimming with the stuff. There must have been 20 cases or even more in there. Other people I've spoken to recall folks bringing beer back from Colorado. Maybe it was just a thing to do since that is where it was made.
 When we went it was always a big production. It seemed like a very long drive to me. In fact, the first time I drove there as an adult to a job in Fort Worth I couldn't believe it when I passed it so soon out of  Decatur  and saw that sign Jeterville pop 6 and 1 cat- that is right isn't it?  Inside the building was ice cold. There was a sign on the walk in fridge door, "Teeth chatterin 28 degree beer". Hanging from the ceiling was a canoe emblazoned with Budweiser logos. I would beg my dad to buy it. He would say he couldn't. When I would ask why he would say, That would be free advertisement. That thing still crosses my mind and I wonder where it ended up. We were allowed to choose one snack and one drink. I would pick chocolate milk and a Mrs Baird's French Pastry.
Freedom Pastry.
 I was always curious about the associated bar behind the store having vague knowledge that dad spent time in there. He would play it off in front of mom and act like he didn't know what I was talking about. I knew he would stop there and play pool on his way home from jobs in Fort Worth. He would tell other guys about it and when they would ask, Well, did you make any money? He would say, Why hell yes I made some money- who are you talking to? But, I did nearly have to fight my way out of there! Only after I became an adult and hung around some of our leading citizens did I find out what was going on back in those days. His thing was to go in there wearing his overalls after a job looking for all the world like he just fell off of a turnip truck. He would act interested in the table and force an invite to play. Then he would predictably lose a game or two, come close to winning a game, win one- barely until everybody was pumped and ready to relieve him of more money or get the money back they lost on side bets. Then he would turn those fools upside down and shake them until he took every nickel they had. When he said he nearly had to fight his way out of there he wasn't kidding- it is a wonder he didn't end up with a bullet in his brain. He would come home with his pockets stuffed full of money. He would smell like cheap cologne, adrenalized sweat, bourbon, beer, and tobacco and it was intoxicating to me.
  I knew a guy once from Decatur who got stabbed in the doorway to the beer store. His first initial was K. There was an altercation, the offender who was walking out punched the guy from Decatur 3 times softly in the belly. K shoved the dude down in a heap near the Fort Worth Star Telegram machine. K went in and bought his refreshments. On the way home he felt something cool and wet on his belly. Looking down he saw he was covered in blood. He had been stabbed 3 times with a small pocket knife.
 When I went the first time to the bar (I was probably about 16)  there it could have followed a script. Some rough guys asked me and P. if we wanted to play. I tried to play it off and say I wasn't that good. Strictly speaking that was true- in my circle I wasn't that great but I was good enough to not embarrass myself often around the guys I played pool with but the guys I hung around were studs at pool. It will just be for fun! one assured me. OK I said caving and I picked a cue. As you can guess nothing clicked until inevitably money started being put on the table but when it clicked I literally ran the table. I can still see the look in Ps eyes when he said, Man, are you trying to get us killed? and the white knuckles of the guy whose hands were wrapped around that cue like it was a club as he stood there absolutely seething with rage.

  Zac, my baby is sleeping soundly in my Army sleeping bag on the floor as I write this. In a few minutes I'll wake him so we can go spend the weekend in a cabin at Turner Falls. It was mostly second chances that have gotten me this far. I got second chances that lots of other guys did not and I try live as though I appreciate that fact.
 I'm not a perfect person. I still wake up on the wrong side of the bed sometimes but I thank God it has been a long time since I woke up on the wrong side of the driveway.
                                                                    The End

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Meandering Missives

  • Occasionally when a case is close to my house and especially if the weather is nice I'll walk. It's just good to me for us to do regardless but, it really helps me unwind on the way home and feel better when I walk to where the patient is living. The following are my observations from the last case I walked home from.

  • Good God, it's 30 degrees with a wind chill of 20- and I almost didn't carry a coat. Unbelievable.

  • Brain freeze headache.

  • Seeing the bicycle rack in front of Goodwill- wonder if I could take one and slide the money through the doors with a note?

  • In the restaurant. Please don't grin at me like I'm a touched homeless person staggering in to bum coffee.

  • I'm actually a real man of genius.

  • Killed an hour and a half, not any warmer. Actually, wind is picking up as it is being pushed by warming affect of sun- brutality.

  • Do I know anybody on the way?

  • A beautiful boat with trash mounded up in the hull setting beside an equally nice bike sinking in the mud, setting by a very pretty truck parked cockeyed in the middle of the yard with two bags of garbage on the hood and a Christmas Tree in the bed.

  • Madness

  • Bet there's a story there though- somewhere.

  • Passing the In workout place with the sign proclaiming You have a duty to your booty. Good morning ladies. God Bless You.

  • An old Ford station wagon with Ole Skali Wagon in vinyl letters on the back window.

  • Trouble machine.

  • Passing an old, junky looking 1984 Chevy moving truck with the top peeled back like it hit the bottom a bridge for sale for 3800.00 dollars.

  • If I had 3 grand in my pocket I'd make an offer and you'd be mine baby.

  • Tell me dear, does your heater work?

  • I've lost it- talking to vehicles.

  • The bridge is still out? Good grief.

  • Mexican construction workers with their mouths hanging open as a goofy whaleo comes up out of the creek wearing scrubs and carrying a backpack after bypassing the never ending bridge project.

  • Oh my God, out in the open, wind whistling, pulling tears from my eyes.

  • Can't take it.

  • Wish the VFW was open.

  • Ah, my neighbor- lift your arm and wave at him- maybe he'll get the hint and save you.

  • Move- arm.

  • Oh man, he turned around- he's glad to see me and we talk.

  • The heater burns my cheeks and ears.

  • Home soak in the tub, get warm, eat and sleep to be ready for tonight.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Wednesday's Digressions

The hugest parasitic vine I have ever seen- it was easily 4 or even 6 inches thick

Sky rat

American pelican

Often mistaken for ducks, these birds are coots

One of the rabbits abandoned at Sunshine Lake

His Satanic brother

You can see the strangest things in or near the trash at the pavillion

  • Jackson Browne's These Days in the manner of the acoustic. He wrote this song when he was 16 years old.
  • Zac is mesmerized by The Neverending Story. I mean presently- he's watching it while I'm writing.
  • If I was told I had a terminal illness: I'd one time have a woman with me to carry a huge purse with an equally huge zip lock bag into a Chinese buffet place so I could fill it up and scarf out later when I inevitably got hungry for more Chinese goodness the same night.
  • I don't eat at the buffet place in Weatherford by the Super Save, but if you do, look to your right as you walk in. there's a picture with horses as the subject. There's 100 of them in case you're curious. I walked in as the owner said," 99, 100!" "There's 100 horses?" I asked. "Yes, yes- I try for rong time between customers. Now I finish!"
  • People assume Chuck Hagel will be  a good Sec Def since as he served as a grunt in Vietnam he is more likely to lean toward diplomacy instead of agitate for war in a given situation. Recently I've heard multiple talk show hosts and political supporters for his nomination reference  this assumption. This literally makes no sense based on what we should know of what makes people tick. He was a grunt in a war we lost. If he enjoyed his time there and was good at his job he would be about as likely to push for a war he thought winnable as to not be demonstrably affected at all by his time in service when offering advice to the President.
  • People are weird. People will believe what they want to believe. I'm glad though, to hear the word, "grunt" in those polite news talk circles.
  • The new camera is great but like lots of tech these days- it is way smarter than me and I suspect it would be easier to get an associates degree as to master it.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Monday's Missives

Great blue heron hanging out with sky rats
Great blue heron. When I hear or think of the term great blue heron I sometimes imagine one of them saying, Oh, me great? Shucks- I don't think so but thanks for saying so, it's very sweet and flattering!  

No shortage of sky rats today
Some awful person dumped about 13 rabbits at Sunshine Lake today (01/13/2013). One of the rabbits decided he'd make the most of it and go native. He had the start of a good hole when he decided he needed a chin scratchin' against a root.

Sky rat at Sunshine Lake
Our friend's dog- Satan's
Little Helper

  • To be filed under, I don't get this way often or Oh, yes I did: about 15 minutes ago as I was completing my stop at a sign my foot slipped off the brake and I tapped the throttle a little. It's not like I did a smoky burn out stopping in oncoming traffic or anything- an attentive driver might have noticed my car moved forward that 2-4 inches. Some goob in a goober car though stared me down as he passed in front of me and shook his head like he wished he had time to pull me out of the car and school me a little. Welllll, when I caught up to him at the next stop and shouted with my window down, "You have something you want to say to me while I'm here?" as loudly as I could while staring straight at him. It was the funniest thing- suddenly he wanted to pay more attention to his own driving, the muffin he was eating and be a little more forgiving of the foibles of others.
  • Most ridiculous headline I have seen in a while- Were Norway massacre's lesbian heroes ignored by the press?
  • Good grief.
  • "You can handle yourself. Break out your flashlight and the pistol. If he comes back and tries to get in warn him once if you're sure you have time. If he doesn't comply or you don't have time- shoot- don't hesitate."
  • The last text message I sent.
  • Last text I received from Colorado: Hey man you up? On our way to the river. It was 58 degrees here when we woke up this morning.
  • Thanks brah- you rock. It was probably 90 and humid when I read that.
  • Previous posts were obviously drafted at least months ago.
  • I have friend-girl's cat nearly trained to fetch a ball on command. She calls me the cat whisperer.
  • Friend-girl I mean.
  • Right after I got to work today (01/11/2013) a nursing buddy came in and informed me I had a flat.  My back is out from wrestling that thing on and off the car. I'll have 4 new Hankooks on her by the time you read this.
  • Sometimes when ice made from water in my house melts it smells kinda funky but while it's ice water I never notice a thing.