Archive for the ‘Health’ Category

Latest New Dance Craze: It's Called The Bunny Hop!


26 Mar

meaningoflife

The Meaning of Life? Ask a scientist?

It was a bright day until someone asked the meaning of life, not in the form of a question, but in the form of a meme. Seems my good friend Mike Twigger, as is his way, reposted a rather humorous image with its own text superimposed. In other words, that image to the left of this paragraph. What follows next is a matter of interpretation of what seemed a fairly straight forward riff on scientists, what they know, and how they play it. Then out came the bunny rabbits one by one, doing the bunny hop.

I say, "Good One!"

Laura Waldron then pipes in, "So it's right to force unwanted pregnancies on women?"

Never one to succumb to tired old fiddlesticks, I retort, "Is it right to force unwanted hangovers on young males? Stretching an argument into something else is easy..."

Laura then has the audacity to relieve me of my sensitivities, "Yeah, what does a guy's hangover have to do with a woman's body? Stay on subject."

Now this was just plain vulgarity to my ears. Stay on subject? After she'd jumped from that image to forcing unwanted pregnancies on women?

But Twigger takes her bait. I mean, how long can one argue Laura's point? Argue it into the ground? It's already in the ground. Dead and buried. I have my view. You have yours. Nuff said. But Twigger weighed in. "I agree as a Christian [that] life starts at conception... therefore the baby should have as much right as the mother... although if it affects the mothers health then yes abortion should be available and safe. I believe there should also be surrogate mothers who could carry the baby to term if the real mom didn't want the child."

Well, that last point was interesting. Taking fetus from one oven to another. But that argument about saving the mother's life in a crisis over the life of the fetus has always left me a bit cold and unconvinced. However, Laura responds to Mike before I have the chance to build anything on that small piece of well-treaded ground, "Surrogate mothers expect to get paid. Unwanted pregnancies leads to the birthing of unwanted children which leads to said children being neglected and abused. Speaking from experience here."

Damn interesting comeback. I suppose she now prefers that she'd had been aborted. Now, that's a revolutionary statement, if truly believed by its speaker, which I strongly doubt. But I leave that alone for now. Instead I stay on my original course and her first point once removed, that is staying on topic, or at least the topic she wanted to rehash, "Hahahaha. Laura. I knew you would say that. You took my bait. So to recap. What does determining a living cell found in the womb of a pregnant woman to be life have to do with forcing unwanted pregnancies on women? You, Ms. Waldron, jumped the shark, first."

Her reply was simple. She was catching up. "Because of what the meme implies. Duh. And its so obvious that its a pro lifer meme."

Well, it was time to wrap all this together in a neat package before I could return to her most recent jewel. Is life more important than a wretched childhood, or is it not? That is the pro-lfe meme, my dear, and perhaps one day you will realize it. Oops, I'm getting ahead of myself. Here is what I said next, "I call that a bunny hop. Memes can lead anywhere. Like, uh, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar can lead some of us to think well, duh, sometimes, life is just life. End of story. Nothing about abortions or a right to choose or baby names or rapists or regret or sex with your daddy. Besides Laura. If you drink too much, just expect a hangover. Complaining about it or slicing and dicing about how you got that drunk doesn't change anything. You're stuck with the hangover. How you deal with it is the almighty gift of initiative. But then, sometimes bunny hops just get a bit off the beaten path, don't you think? THAT was my point to you at the top of this thread. The question wasn't guess a meme, it was about the nature of life versus the hypocrisy of scientists and media who should know better. That's a meme that begins and ends with the information as it was given. We now see where taking unauthorized bunny hops can lead.

Then Miss Liberty and all her tired, her poor, her huddled masses came a knocking with a link that is supposed to prove something to me, again having nothing to do with the original laugh track at scientists and the media. "Oldest, largest, and only statewide Pro-Life organization in Texas. I don't think I came to any false conclusions or BUNNY HOPS. I think you—however—are trying to be contrarian with me and it won't work as I'm the biggest contrarian I know. You may want to make the meme about the nature of life versus the hypocrisy of scientists and media and make it this deep thing but it was intended to be an attack on Women's CHOICE, on the rights to our bodies, and if women don't fight this attack on us, then what's next? Making rape legal? See you can say its an orange all you want but the truth is, it's an apple."

And she really thinks she's clever, parroting these threadbare statements. After all, apples and oranges in her arguments would be the same because they are both fruits, or to her point, designed to keep women away from the authority over their own bodies. But I press on, "You want to know what's next? Simple. You framed it yourself, in so many words. The question stated: is your own wretched childhood more important than the non-existence from which you were spared, or is it not? That is the pro-lfe meme, dear contrarian," adding, "I refuse to fall for retread handbook. You stretch a simple question about the origins of life into a parade of boogie men without once mentioning the predominant track of using abortion on demand as a high dollar, high risk prophylactic."

"I also refuse to accept you binary proposition. Death is all around us. I can do little about any of it. I take no religious or political position on abortion except to dig further for the truth wherever I find it. But I do find its current practice vulgar and self-serving. If you, Laura Waldron, are so wise as to assign policy binaries on every swirling detail you are fortunate to be able to observe, I dare suggest that you are indeed better off having been born even though you may have experienced a shoddy childhood, rather than to have been neutralized as a thriving embryo. Frankly, this is a tiresome and well-documented argument you make. I found freshness in precisely the point that the image and caption Mike posted made clear, and nothing else, since as I say, if I want an abortion debate there are infinite other places to find one that an ironic Facebook post. The fact that you ran in to make it something else on the basis of a tired meme was your prerogative I suppose, but it certainly isn't the only meme attached to the meaning of life that makes stellar commentary useful and exhonerating. In other words, I write for my own reasons, and you and your transitional memes have nothing to do with it. Lastly, I trust my sarc has not exceeded but merely equaled yours towards me, tat for tit, apple for orange, squeezed or simple peeled, for I would never want to make you feel stupid."

To be continued, if Laura Waldron has more to add. With kind regards to its awesome powers of community, nevertheless King Facebook is not my home. There are reasons for that, also, but I'm sure the usual meme would not suffice, but for sake of shortness of breath, let's just agree that it does (whatever that might be).

O Fly, There's A Waiter In My Soup


30 Oct

urge may take or leave dot women
drunk before malicious identity
essential pedestrian shakes
against pagan blue vision
rock shadows beat to boil
burn and beauty shock
black rust dream lilies
old men crowded minds
cancel this stop
a spoiled fuss

two years ago free agency
she sweats as she pockets
below the previous rail
to standardized poverty
a typographical error
the deliberate cinema

we can't discriminate, silk
soft asphalt, hard styrofoam
reloading ten eligible goals
not on my highway says Ned
just easier leaves eyeball
rolling upscale bouncy
seekers without likes
to cowering experts
drowned in fact

an addiction to friction
abundance of ordnance
always in the airspace
progressing past pulse
overnight overtime
draft free weight
spend up girls
pigskin mash

purchasing resistance care
vague trust critical zones
education irreducibly slow
we digital tongues
ignore the door
root volumes
they wait
we go

[ 2013, Lovettsville VA ]

I Went To School With Bonnie Jones (Yellow)


27 Sep

dream

Bonnie's Dream

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From Bonnie Jones Davisson
September 27, 2009 at 10:58am

You are such an inspiration Gabriel! I will call you that because it suits you as you are. I am so sorry to hear about your mother's struggles. One thing my siblings and I did was to pamper my mother as she was - a true queen. In her latter months, we would go into the nursing home and just crawl inro bed with her, holding her close just to hear her heart beat. We are a very close family, and it was all because of her. She was our sun, and we were mearly planets made from her stardust.

Yes, David died in his sleep. His heart just stopped. He was a type A, head of the gyn. dept. in Thomasville GA. If I go, that's how I want to do it. I remember in one of my attempts at leaving ths Earth, I was guided by David for 3 days, as I spoke French the entire time. Strange what the mind will do. Mutt is simply that, a Mutt. I hear he also has heart troubles, but his boxing days were over a long time ago. He and I had an affair during his boxing days, but my true love was David. I sincerely think had Bobby not been around the two of us would have connected. Mutt has 2 boys—Hunter and Fisher—which speaks volumns as to Mutt's lack of sincerity and unimaginable ego. Were it not for his mousy wife, Robin, his sons would be wild and free, much like Luke's. Good grief! I have told you more buried secrets of my life than I have anyone else! Why do you have my trust so easily?

I have not been on Facebook much lately. I am preoccupied with my daughter's wedding. As a highly gifted child, she is rejecting all tradtitional ceremonies, and is insisting on wearing a pair of $400 knee boots under her dress - of which I thought looked cheap. Intervention meant going to Athens and visiting flower shops, which she finally conceded as beautiful, but is still stubbornly rejecting the cake, which I will do anyway. She will thank me when she's older.

I am also preoccupied with changing pain medication doctors and doing physical therapy. I am also studying with a Jehovah's Witness, of which I have 2 sisters who have practised the religion for over 40 years. Too much has come to pass that they have said would to ignore this religin as not being at least worthy of a second look. I also like the way they are always studying the Bible. Their worships on Sundays are not ranting and ravings, but actual talks by various elders who constantly refer to the Bible to support their subject of the day. I was amazed that in Genesis, it says that the Earth shangs in the heavens as if on a string. Why didn't the Pope KNOW that when the church banned Copernicus to house arrest?

Many exciting things happening right now. I will keep you posted.

Your friend and confidant,
Bonnie

Woman, oh, woman. Well, with every note, Bonnie, you come with both barrels loaded it seems. That's a good thing. Thanks for the update on the Daniel brothers. Tragic, in David's case. As stated earlier, I didn't actually know Mutt, and I had no idea that you bounced around with him at some point. I do appreciate your honesty. Very refreshing to find someone who finds redemption in detail, and craves loveliness despite the reckoning one's path in life often brings...

The story of your mother, of course, is a warming example of what family life can be. Cling to the memories, dear woman. Life is fleeting, and we make of it what we dare within the circumstances we may wrestle and the choices we can muster. Unfortunately, my family never quite measured up to those many ideals we sought, rugged individualists to the core, each of us, beginning with a hardcore alcoholic father and a mother of seven who never REALLY wanted to mother, but chafed an entire life craving to exude ideas of exceptionalism while denying her often troubled, even troublesome yet striving children the same. But after all is said and done, I guess she did her best, as did we.

But here we are, 24 fat and lean years later, still tied in knots, madly in love with each other, best friends forever, and rarely seen in public without the other except during the weekday when she counts the beans in her big office while I chip away at the art world. Her already elderly parents were scandalized by all the brute stylings of the wedding we planned ourselves (mostly me), and for that small over-indulgence I am regretful, but it WAS indeed a unique event.
I hazard to make any remarks about your daughter's choice of wedding apparel because you may be right. The boots may indeed look cheap. Cheap is a fashion choice with its place, its own context and subtext, it still must fit and flow.

I too, am strongly opinionated about fashion, although I am somewhat of a slob myself except when I reclaim the magic. Then I can't fail to strike an erstwhile artistic pose with compliments swirling. In another life, as the saying goes, I might very well have aspired to a life of fashion design. You may remember from high school some rather odd choices I wore to class. Checkered pants, golfer's attire. White shoes, perhaps. From junior high forward, my bold clothes tended to set me apart from the general population, a trait I still maintain to some degree.

That said, my tastes range from traditional upscale lines to street punk debonair. Without embarrassment I have all but dressed my wife for 26 years. Admittedly she resisted early on, but grew to appreciate the benefits. She of course now solicits my eye, and recognizes that I love quality with flair. She sometimes admits the truth that she exudes no taste whatsoever, if anything, maybe classic Tom Robbins cowgirl blues couture. So, if daughter's boots are shiny vinyl high kickers, I say, yuck to cheap, kitsch hooker glam. No way. But if they are matte black thigh high combat boots, with luxurious white quilt-stitched silk gripping her, she'd have my vote, as long as she matches it with a black silk headscarf appointed with red rose to regale her hair in something other than a stale 1950s-1960s bouffant that is so popular with the wedding planner set for decades. Of course, I'm presuming she has long hair, but even if she doesn't, a similar treatment would probably be agreeable. This is all fanciful speculation, of course. Can't quite kill the punk rocker aesthetic I wholeheartedly embraced I suppose.

OK. That was me in Project Runway mode. Please pardon me, if I've insulted you, Bonnie. Perhaps I should share. At the Sue & Gabriel wedding in 1985, no holds barred punk rock motif all the way, my wife and I boasted a square black cake with a pirate's skull & crossbones on top in mockery of all the scripted storybook marriages that then and now fail at a 50% rate. She called all over the city of WASHINGTON, DC for black roses. None could be found. Florists thought she was crazy. We ended up spraying silk red roses black. Nowadays, authentic black roses are found everywhere, roses actually bred to be black. Yup, we were part of a trendsetter generation, for better or worse. But here we are, 24 fat and lean years later, still tied in knots, madly in love with each other, best friends forever, and rarely seen in public without the other except during the weekday when she counts the beans in her big office while I chip away at the art world. Her already elderly parents were scandalized by all the brute stylings of the wedding we planned ourselves (mostly me), and for that small over-indulgence I am regretful, but it WAS indeed a unique event.

As for the Jehovah's Witnesses, I too, have extreme experience with them. But I will delay that deposition until the next letter.

Your friend in letters,

Gabriel

I Went To School With Bonnie Jones (Azure)


24 Sep

bonnie-davis

Thought About You Today

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From:Bonnie Jones Davisson
Date: September 24, 2009 at 11:35am

Is that you, the clown? My husband worked at a Holiday Inn when we first moved to Orlando, and I voted at a Holiday Inn Express during that fateful '00 election, but I still don't see the connection. This one you will be forced to slap me directly in the face with the answer.

Bonnie, Bonnie, Bonnie. Go back to my original post. I was making some kind of joke, and I parenthetically proposed that you read the line I had written metaphorically with the same spirit, voice, and cadence as the commercial. The rodeo clown is not me, and has nothing to do with me, nor does Holiday Inn have anything to do with me, but is only one of many commercials Holiday Inn Express has aired using this same "voice" that beams, "Yada yada yada, but I DID stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night" inferring that a good night's rest at Holiday Inn Express was of such magical power that a stay allowed you to perform extraordinary, almost magical feats in situations you are hardly trained to accomplish, the next day. If that explanation doesn't help, I mean really, let's drop it. It's no big deal, unless you suspect that magic is somehow in the making. I am quite the metaphysician's mystic myself, but have a strong objective side to me that discounts the hocus pocus of wordgames as just that, wordgames. Wittgenstein, Popper, and all those crazy but highly focussed philosophers who taught us that language is a conspiracy of two or three gathered. We simply create and agree upon understanding, thus realizing the etymological organism in its most basic organizational form. That stuff...

I am disturbed to hear of your health predicaments. You have a darling family and chances are they still want you and need you in their lives. And didn’t I read that you’re gifted with a loving husband soon to be restoring his Lady to the Theme Park sovereignty of her youth? Slow fun can be fun too.
Meanwhile, among other bombshells I expect to volley one at a time, you mentioned that David Daniel died. When and how, do you mind? I heard Mutt became a professional boxer, but don't know any more than that. Dr. Henry Rodeffer is still in Fernandina, I discovered. What about Suzy? What about Philip Daugherty? What's his story? Mark didn't reply. Not that I expected anything more.

As for you dear Lady, convivial Queen of Theme Parks everywhere, don't let the wretched Georgia school system claw at your soul. It's hardly a secret, but everyone with spark in the dark is hush hush and too politically correct to admit that America the Beautiful is crumbling from within and without. Unfortunately it's my perception that things are only headed for the worse. There appears to be no escape. If you must acquiesce, allow any enemy their folly, but never give into these bastards, whatever their stripe. Our only consolation—as unforgiving time renders its verdict—is even breakneck stupidity is fleeting.

I am disturbed to hear of your health predicaments. You have a darling family and chances are they still want you and need you in their lives. And didn't I read that you're gifted with a loving husband soon to be restoring his Lady to the Theme Park sovereignty of her youth? Slow fun can be fun too.

She had flown that night with less than five dollars in her pocket. So she had to leave the hostel and foot it to the Western Union Office however far away that was, and have somebody wire her the money. Her grant check as expected came in the mail at the hostel on Monday, less than 24 hours after she was found dead on Easter Sunday.
My mother also died, now about five years ago, struggling down that last stretch in seeking her doctorate at the Adler School of Psychology, starting school in her late-fifties at Oglethorpe U there in Atlanta, earning her BA in 1999, where she was a star, and main topic in the president's address at Graduation Day. All this after raising six kids, having triple bypass surgery, and beating cancerous melanoma and lymphoma. My mother, however was a psychological mess, very smart, but with a keen intelligence mismanaged with great care, as her entire life was spent seeking respect, when in reality it wasn't respect she wanted but a highly cultivated admiration. She suffered all manner of struggle just to be admired, but most of all she wanted to be recognized as an authority. But at 69, she crumpled to the bed in a Chicago youth hostel on Maudy Thursday of the '03 Easter weekend, after a long flight from Atlanta only to be told by the NEW night manager that she couldn't get into her room (of nearly three years) until she caught up with her rent. She had flown that night with less than five dollars in her pocket. So she had to leave the hostel and foot it to the Western Union Office however far away that was, and have somebody wire her the money. Her grant check as expected came in the mail at the hostel on Monday, less than 24 hours after she was found dead on Easter Sunday.

She was a true character, a product of her generation however, and while I am indeed MY MOTHER'S SON, the eldest of six, and closest in resemblence both physically and intellectually to her, we were fiercely at odds most of the time in a battle of wits I refused to concede simply because she was my mother.

There's more, lots more, Bonnie, but I'll end here for now. Forget the Holiday Inn Express bit. It's totally irrelevant to anything of consequence...

Stay strong, and seek internal beauty...

Gabriel

I Went To School With Bonnie Jones (White)


23 Sep

big-brother-bully

Big Brother Is A Bully

samplex

Always...but never, Bonnie.

Let's not be coy. I regret I have but one life to give for my country. As I now understand it, this statement, once attributed to patriot Nathan Hale who was hung by the British as a spy, has now been reclassified as apocryphal. Rubbish, I say, but ultimately it doesn't matter. Slogans are only wordsuck. Language itself is mere alphabet dirt, but from healthy soil we rise, and survey all that nature confers. But yes. These are perilous times. While I wish to remain strong, to steer my family through what I feel are dangerous and rough times ahead in a land of strangers, much like you described, I am not afraid to put it all on the line if the occasion calls, but until that hour I am just a writer, a poet, a painter, a husband, a farmer, and a friend to the friendless who seek just one.

Chin up Bonnie. I also hail from a family of shrimpers. I never knew that about you. I just observed you as a cute little blonde girl who was nice in class, and had all the right friends, some of the same ones I had. Seems I recall you hanging out with Colleen Kane a good bit, and the Anderson sisters. Your own daughters seem wonderful. Job well done. So indeed, let's continue to reach out. I am real. That much you can expect of me. Big Brother is a bully. I have faced many a bully blocking my path. Damn the stories upon which we as unique individuals are built...

Again, thanks for your kind words. My life gets very busy at times, but personal outreach is very important to my daily stamina, so have patience, be assured that I am never far away, but I will think of you often, and in turn, am always delighted to hear from you. If you have a solid email address, perhaps we can move our conversations off Facebook, for privacy and organizational concerns, if only a niche or two more secure.

Either way, I wish you the very best you can muster in your day to day. I have a few health concerns myself, so can empathize as a peer. Thank you for making me your friend. I still have to laugh that you thought I was homosexual, although I understand. I was quite flaming in high school, still am in many ways I suppose.

Also, have several siblings in the Stone Mountain area...

Truly,

Gabriel

A Taste Of Trench Madness


23 Jul

gabriel-thy

Gabriel Thy's Sleepy Eye

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Thanks for keeping up the resistance, Morales. Just know that the busy silence of we who are marked to fall always proceeds the clashing of the cymbals, while those of us who warned the others (now laughing and mocking, hissing and despising our herald) will have witnessed the fullness of truth, not they—and by inertia or grace will be prepared to shield others from the amplified atrocities as they arrive. That's the extent of whatever hope I have remaining because I have learned that minds are not changed by the politeness of social stability but by the harsh tongues of upheaval and crisis. This country will probably awaken when Europe implodes, but I believe that America is also marked for crisis, a result of having become sadly corrupted and from our national potential far have we strayed.

Don't fear the Marxist-Islamofascism creep, however. Resist it wherever we can, but don't expect any sudden miracles quite yet. People still treasure their fool's gold, reflecting among the dueling mirrors of social consciousness that they've done the math, not quite realizing they've only been using imaginary numbers while letting the real digits slip away...

And allow me this opportunity to insist that I am not naive, no matter what I choose to paint or wrestle into inconsequential line. It's rather obvious by now that I frittered away that excuse six senses and a million miles ago in a taste of trench madness. I may be a fool, but I'm nobody's fool.

Bob Amerson and I become close friends that summer, but this was a small town, and this was what happened in small towns back in the 60s where few homes ever locked their doors, even when folks left town for a few days. Boyhood allegiances shifted quickly without warning, without rationale, without lasting impression in those days. Childhood innocence should be so easy for kids today without ending up in a grave.
I've been aware of this sleepy right eye since junior high when it first started popping up into school photos. I didn't start short career in sandlot boxing, until a bit later, but I did suffer a couple of black ones put there by Bob Amerson immediately after school while we were in the sixth grade. But I picked myself up and met the usual in-town lads—Davey Ryals, his brother Terry, Terry Simmons, Reggie Sawyer, Jimbo Caldwell, Louie "Mooches" Davis, Ronnie Wright, Jimmie Pitts, Tommy Hall, a fews others I'm sure, and Terry Kennedy, the one girl who lived just behind the field, while the rest of us just walked or rode our bicycles—at the ballfield for a pickup game just as was expected nearly every day. Bob did not. I was also surprised to see Donnie Findley there that afternoon, but none of my own brothers were there. If they were I don't recall. But I apparently had earned the applause of the whole squad of twelve to fifteen boys already slinging hash on the field. Sure, I suffered the usual bouts of self-consciousness at school over the next few days, but nobody ever ragged me. From the best I could tell—rolling around the ground (near the tree roundabout where kids who rode parked our bicycles) swinging punches, landing a few, ducking others, before getting pinched by the ears and led to Principal Huff's office by Mrs. Middleton who had taught us both two years earlier—the crowd of twenty-five to thirty, best I could reckon, was split fifty-fifty. But nobody ever ragged me. Bob showed at school the next day. He didn't seem any worse for wear, no shiners, no nothing. But nobody ever ragged me. Bob Amerson and I become close friends that summer, but this was a small town, and this was what happened in small towns back in the 60s where few homes ever locked their doors, even when folks left town for a few days. Boyhood allegiances shifted quickly without warning, without rationale, without lasting impression in those days. Childhood innocence should be so easy for kids today without ending up in a grave.

Health Diarist Fears Worst


08 May

kneequake

Wounded Knee, Tepid Punks

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Trotted off to the orthopedist yesterday to seek professional advice concerning my ailing right knee. It had been over a week, and while it wasn't getting worse, it was swollen like a round grapefruit, hurt like Tabasco in the sun, and damn sure wasn't getting any better. After x-rays and some hands-on twisting and gnarling of the damaged limb, the doctor fears that the cartilage has been torn. Medically speaking, the "cartilage" is actually known as the meniscus. The meniscus is a C-shaped piece of fibrocartilage which is located at the peripheral aspect of the joint. The majority of the meniscus has no blood supply. For that reason, when damaged, the meniscus is unable to undergo the normal healing process that occurs in most of the rest of the body. In addition, with age, the meniscus begins to deteriorate, often developing degenerative tears. Typically, when the meniscus is damaged, the torn piece begins to move in an abnormal fashion inside the joint.

Because the space between the bones of the joint is very small, as the abnormally mobile piece of meniscal tissue (meniscal fragment) moves, it may become caught between the bones of the joint (femur and tibia). When this happens, the knee becomes painful, swollen, and difficult to move.

This tearing of cartilage in my knee will probably lead to my eighth surgery. But first, the doctor has put me on an anti-inflammatory medication, and if this doesn't recede the symptoms, then it's off to the MRI Center, and perhaps surgery down the road.

Slamming Sam, I just can't catch a break since I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism two years ago—one ailment or health condition after another.

Memory Is A Scream


06 May

toy-boat

Granddaddy Came Through

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MY FIRST MEMORY IS OF BEING on my back in a hospital bed. Never one to rely on the shoddy recall powers of certain family members who seemed to lack the same zing I had for remembering where I put my yesterdays, very early in life I displayed a precocious curiosity for the push and pull of life's levers and diligently stocked my own memory bank with notes and exercises geared to maximize my potential—so I am rather sure, as sure as a consistent list checker can be that my very first memories from the time I first started thing about first memories were burned into this organ when I am a mere two years and months old during this first of eight surgeries I have undergone to date.

Actually, there are two strong memories that have chided me over the years from that two-week summer stint at Brunswick General Hospital where I had my left testes surgically dropped from inside my groin to the exterior scrotum sack, a process most boys experience within the first month or so after birth, naturally, without surgery, but my two danglers were apparently somewhat reluctant to show themselves. The condition, which also affects male fertility, is called cryptochidism.

Granddaddy was alone with me and he had a brand new toy boat, blue in color, just like he had promised, and I recall quite vividly us walking the few steps hand in hand to the private bath inside my room, filling the tub with water, and floating the boat and me on the wave of magnificent play time antics only Spud Woodward was capable of generating.
This is 1957. I am basking in my own private room. Brunswick General is not a military facility, so I remain at a loss to explain both the private room and my seclusion in a civilian medical institution. Perhaps my grandparents are footing the bill. My own daddy is hardly a thrifty man. In fact, he is well on his way, even taxing gregarious United States Navy standards to their vanishing point a few years down the road, in putting the word "drunk" into the phrase—drunken sailor. But that's of no concern here. I wouldn't be expected to sort out all these details at my age. Responsibility beyond my years did roar in upon me rather early as childhood dynamics tend to go, but not this early, at least not that I recollect. That would come later—with the siblings.

My problem, a traumatic hit so startling as to abruptly sear its passage into my memory, so that I can reflect upon it in my mind's eye just like it was yesterday, is being left alone for the first time in my suddenly quite conscious life. I am an only child at the time. My mother would birth seven children in seven and a half years, and must have been pregnant with my first brother even then, as I was secretly being prepared to undergo the scalpel in anticipation of growing a pair. But for this strategic moment in the life of a child, I am still the oscillating focus of attention for a small army of adoring adults and doting teenage girls, including my mother's own three much younger sisters who would spoil me with "favorite nephew" affection for the rest of their lives.

The toddler is lying in a hospital bed staring up at young mommy and daddy, 22 and 21 years of age, respectively...

They are telling me they have to leave, but that they will be back the next morning. Yes, as a precocious two-year old, nearing three probably, I understand their English but I feel only the compulsion to reject it. I do not wish to be left alone, and I'm not about to let them slip out of that large beige-walled room without a fuss. It was not totally dark outside yet, but within the room, the light was disappearing. Commencing to scream, I continue to wail without conscience until I am told that my granddaddy would be there to visit me in a couple of days and was bringing me the toy boat he had promised. But, as mem'ry serves, nothing would stop my bellicose screeching, stretching no doubt the tissue of my young pink lungs to the bursting point until after they had left my line of vision.

hospital-boat

My Hospital Boat

I had done my job. I had let them know how much I cared about them. Or else I had let them know how little I appreciated being abandoned to a strange place all alone and terrified. There wasn't even a smiling winsome nurse around to help guide me towards the light of an inexplicable future. I seemed to sense that I was simply too young to be left alone. Didn't they know that at least one of them could have slept in the room, in that chair over there in the corner, keeping me company, until the fear and trepidation of being abandoned by Nyx, the primordial goddess of night, had passed? Apparently not. Or else this young couple perhaps still in love with each other, or perhaps the party life, had better things to do. Free night off without the snotty-nosed kid. I could only imagine.

But sure enough, an undetermined number of days later, Granddaddy popped in by himself, and I basked in his bombastic personality. Granddaddy was alone with me and he had a brand new toy boat, blue in color, just like he had promised, and I recall quite vividly us walking the few steps hand in hand to the private bath inside my room, filling the tub with water, and floating the boat and me on the wave of magnificent play time antics only Spud Woodward was capable of generating.

It seems odd that this second memory—as keen as the first one days earlier, which was probably a fragment from the evening before the surgery— is not associated with pain of any sort except abandonment, a problem I still suffer in many ways some fifty years later.

My fourth and fifth years were ripe for pneumonic pickings, most of a more pedestrian nature, but we'll leave those for another day.

Around The Rock That Ruined The School Of Diabolical Poets


21 Apr

poster-wall

DC Space Poster Wall

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SUE AND I PLAN on getting to the Saturday night show. Is that the rock show for you? I have Open Studios that day, and again the next day, and am on doctor's orders of no alcohol (not a problem these days), plus now my latest whack, my right knee is popping, is swollen, and is painful. And to think I am soon moving up to a studio with a third floor walkup...

This will be my last 9353 show, my favorite band of the local Yellow Years. My rocker friends can't pull themselves away from their own egos long enough to lolly over to mine, so it's time to prune the branches. Frankly, I'm forcing myself to attend this show because Norman (a la Martine) has come out to a show of mine. Wait a minute! I've already gone to see his band play. We're dead even by my count. But I will stumble over to this last show. Because I said I would. Club scenes require hard drinking in my vernacular, to combat the smoke, and general sense of uselessness, and I can't afford that particular luxury anymore. Those days are just about over for me, as you've no doubt understood me to say in print several times before.

Seriously. Bruce and Kathleen have each promised to swing by sometime, on the heels of numerous invitations. Eventually, the song and dance phase freezes over. We each are forced into bold choices. There's no animosity here, just cold hard decisions required by the frank limitations luciferian time presents us. And I'm really tight with the reciprocity angle, so out with the pruning shears. Time to face the lions...

Life outside the law of lions is a bucket of stones slowly crushed into sand by experiences that herd us into stereotypes we both embrace for their truth and despise for their inconvenience. Yes, so this is my Kaaba story, and I AM sticking to it. Watch us crowd together, flocking around the rock that ruined the school of diabolical poets, crisp, pentecostal, and undeliverable in thirty minutes or less.

Potential Show At Aroma


07 Dec

Burdens-Of-Glory

Burdens Of Glory

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The following note was zipped off to somebody, now I'm thinking Marina Reiter since everyone else I can think it applicable is listed within. The show I hoped to get didn't come through until the following September. I enjoyed the show, had a great crowd of friends at the meet and greet, but sold nothing.

Yes, I mean no. It's not a confirmed done deal, but as we were all standing at the CP Metro, Dana said it was as good as a done deal. She said this with confidence. Late, it was after one when we left. In bed by two. I was up at five. Awoke from bizarre nightmare, couldn't get back to sleep.

I too, am energized, given the fact that I am dragging butt. My head feels like it NEEDS to explode for clarity and relief, et cetera. No energy to suffer Georgetown tonight, sorry. Inertia will keep me in studio working, but it's pretty nasty out there. Was sleeting about mid-day. Bought some varnish today, some paint, and a few more canvases.

Hope to hear from Sesow soon. If not, I'll be seeing Dana probably Wednesday to pick up paintings. I can't believe I bought that second one. One for Sue. One for me. Poor for the holidays. Scratch our tentative holiday getaway to Massachusetts.

Oh well, Dana deserves.

Gabriel

S A M P L E X

"Ignorance and virtue suck on the same straw. Souls grow on bones, but die beneath bankers' hours.""


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