Wednesday, December 30, 2009


As with every New Year we all ponder what it will bring and try to make little promises and resolutions to start anew with a focus on succeeding. Then BAM! Life happens and you can get off track with only one crazy setback that creates a series of setbacks. You then seem to be right back where you started and the next year comes around and your promising yourself to change the same things that you did last year but have added additional things to the list. How could anyone achieve that amount of change? Why would you want to set yourself up for failure, time and time again? Be honest with yourself and realize that everyday should be a resolution to just complete the day with a positive outlook. If you take the time and react and complete one thing on your mind list to do everyday your New Years resolution list will have disappeared and you will not have to waste time promising yourself the do the things that should be done when your mind reminds you. Those little mind blips are your tickets to a calm peaceful ride on your destination plane. Feel the ride and make it smooth. Don't create more turbulence for yourself.

Being frantic was my middle name and there was never a time that did not feel uncompleted. I was always chasing after something that I never seemed to find and still find myself peeking around every corner expecting it to be there. My resolution list was so big every year it made the novel War and Peace looked like a short story. The more I tried to accomplish the more I added to the list to do. Never enough time in a day it seemed. Or so it seemed.
As the summer of 1961 approached my neurosis began to bloom with the next bout at the youth center and all it had to offer. The desire to be crowned the winner again in the summer talent show was all consuming. Returning back that year, I received accolades from the counselors who told me they were looking forward to seeing me at the show and happy that I returned for the season. Well, what were they to say, ................Cripes.....the little neurotic kid is back and more hyper than ever. They were there to watch over us and I certainly made sure they did their job. That summer I bonded with a bunch of kids who were like groupies and all wanted to help in the upcoming show of talent. I became the leader of the pack and led us all astray more than once, yet they never deserted me. I fondly remember all of those people and all the fun that seemed to never end on those long summer days. The more I became friendly with the staff the more freedoms that I got for our pack. We always got into the pool area first and had our affair with the soda machine and all the free refills. Status had its perks and I was keenly aware of that fact and made sure that we used all of them as often as possible. I was offered the opportunity to become the person in charge of music in the youth center. It was the music that you heard inside the huge facility as well as the outside speakers. I soon learned the music tastes of all in charge and was applauded for my spin choices. Contrary to popular belief not everyone wanted to hear Brenda Lee all the time. I always slipped a few in between the stacks of music that they had in the library. I conned the jukebox man into putting more Brenda on the jukebox and he willingly obliged, much to my happiness. My new troupe and I would secretly leave the center from time to time and sneak off to the closest shopping center where we would spend a lot of days shopping. I would become lost in the local record store, keeping an updated charge account that I eagerly paid off each week. I was a vinyl junkie and one habit that I would pass on to my pack of friends.

Mr. McClellan loved us kids as we were his best customers. He would hand over his Billboard magazines to me when he was finished with them and every week I would just revel in the information located on those pages. I would always impress the counselors with my music knowledge courtesy of Billboard magazine. It would become my bible. It held the chart positions of every song out and gave me the insights to what would be happening next for all my favorite singers, and there were many. There would only be one, Number One singer for me. She still is Number One to this day......nothings changed in that area.
I always felt like I needed control of most things that and that did not come without a price. When you take on a controlling interest make sure you know what you taking on. The responsibility is overwhelming and the fall from a failure is devastating at that age. The kids in my circle gave me the reins to run them and that I did with total intensity. Every day would be planned and hourly scheduled until we were picked up at the end of the day. We were an exhausted bunch by five pm. The days folded into one another with ups and downs. My eyes stayed focused on the talent show and my resolution to win the coveted trophy again. Only this year there were others with that same attitude. I did not like thinking I might just lose. I would not allow that thought to come around as it was self defeating. I would just have to do it better than last year. I needed a strategy and someone to help me with bigger ideas. Enter "Ann's Dance Workshop".....they used the center in the evenings for dance classes. Lucky for me that I going to be picked up very late one evening and they arrived to begin their classes and I became a spectator. As I sat there watching, the light began to brighten and by the end of their first hour I had made my decision to ask "Miss Ann" for any suggestions to make my upcoming performance spectacular. She took my info and music and said she would give a listen and get back to me the next evening. She was sent from heaven and helped me create my performance, with aplomb and grace. I still had the two numbers to rehearse and took each critique from my pack of friends and paid attention to the things that each friend told me. It would help greatly. My competition was not an issue anymore.
In hindsight the only competition was against myself as I was my own worst enemy. It was so easy to second guess just about everything. On the day of the competition one of my friends who was part of my number was ill and could not make the performance which sent me out of control. I had to scurry and find a replacement and the choices were slim. The very one that I had the most uncertainty about was my only hope for success. The lack of faith I had in her was obvious but she prevailed despite my ranting. When we had our moment, with trepidation, I went out there fearing the worst and then she magically came alive and took control and we played off each other as though she had been rehearsed from the start. I came alive on "Crazy Talk" and with her help, we pulled it off to a rousing round of applause. There was hope yet as we made it to the finale. After being excited about her performance, I happily thanked her and she confessed to watching us rehearse and had secretly practiced at home and wished it was she who was doing the number and not our other friend. Her wish came true and to this day she is still a performer. Hopefully I helped her, if not for that one moment. The competition narrowed greatly after that and we just had to get through the second number. We CONQUERED! My happiness soared and I could see my Mother applauding with gusto. When the moment of truth was announced I was living a reality from a previous dream, I put my hands over my face to hide the tears. They were tears of joy and relief, I had one less problem to worry about. I shared my triumph with my understudy she helped pulled off a great performance. We were the talk of the center for the last few weeks of summer. I keep going back to the memory of the feeling I had as they called my name as the winner and I knew that I had lived that moment over and over and over again and stayed focused on the end result totally by obsessive thinking. I had no idea that I was asking my genie for such a grand wish, I just wanted to prove I could do it myself. I did just that.
I have to believe that on the eve of New Years 1962 my new word "resolution" defined by my Mother was the motivator. While I had put a million and one things on my resolution list I kept that talent show my main objective and planned it out a thousand different ways and all results ended me coming out the winner. It was not the trophy that I won on that day but a realization that whatever you desire strong enough you will achieve. You must believe it in order to get the happiest conclusion. So relax on this New Year.....think about what you really want to change in your life and just do it. Dismiss the list and take it one day at a time. N O W is your objective.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009


Whenever a situation appears to be all to familiar don't you find it a bit unnerving? You are then poised to wake up the memory banks and jog through many files and and extract why you feel aware that you have been through a similar experience at some point in you life. If I received a dollar for every one of those feelings I have had in my life I can guarantee that I would be a very rich man. If in fact the mind is like a radio tower then my dial was preset on the station because my signals come in loud and clear. If I had to draw a picture of it, then it would resemble an air flight tower at an airport. Lots of radars, with the blips of flight information zooming on the screens. Each plane of information on its own flight path to destinations. Most of the time inside my head that is what it feels like. Lots of directions and many paths to arrive at, all trying to land at the same time. How could anyone coordinate such a large amount of information? It seems to be my life's work to attempt such a feat. I always get the signals to follow and start the walk toward it and try to never look at the cracks in the sidewalks because they always show a dark line that I have to cross over in order to get where I am going.
Trying to fit into the groups at any school or function was very difficult for me. It was as if I was being forced to be like everyone else. I felt like the foreigner and would always make headway to the exit. Whenever I would arrive at a function that included many people my first thing I would do was to find the exit door and then begin my strategy on how to slip out so I would not be missed. Then I could say that I did show up like the rest and never had much information as to what happened after I left, as I really did not care. I balked at everything that a did not set me apart from the pack. I really did prefer to be out looking in as it made for quick getaways. That part still has not changed in this present time. I suppose the creation of this secret side came early in my life as I observed the people around me. I seemed to feel very different from all the rest. Girls would be my best friends and the boys always were much more complicated and rough. I did not feel a comfort zone in rough play.
Retreating to my solitude was my way of dealing with the majority. I could always vote my way and win, it would prove later to be a major hurdle to jump.
Within my walls of confinement many things would be created. I would envision large scenarios of who I would become and the fame and fortune that would come with each scenario. There were times in school when I would float away and totally leave my present situation, only to be rudely awakened by a teacher insisting that I pay attention. The many flights out the windows of school were the mind visions that would, in the future, all come true. In the moments when the situations occur it is as if there are two split television screens in my mind. One side is playing the original recording and the other side is playing the live version of the moment it is becoming reality. That constant signal of deja-vu became a deeply held secret and one that no one would know about. The times that were played out with my Mother's knowledge of what I had told her beforehand, would be snuffed out with her telling me to keep these things to myself and NEVER tell anyone about them. I feared greatly that I was an alien but would soon begin to focus clearer that it was something that I could use to my advantage. I soon realized that I was not alone in this clairvoyance. I happened on to a book in the city library on a field trip in April of 1961. It would take 7 more trips to the library to become acquainted with the clairvoyant Edgar Cayce before I could finish the large book. I was afraid of checking it out only to have it found by one of the parents or a schoolmate and be tortured for reading it. It opened a whole new world for me and being young and naive I would use this information to further my life journey's and release any fears for knowing things ahead of time.
This is not a special gift just for me. We all have this gift yet most are too busy to tune into their station and listen to what's being offered. It can move you to places you never dreamed and give you the strength to take the risks that you fear the most.
To have recognized this at an early age was a gift from a divine intervention. While at times I feared it, I also revered it. Call it gut instinct or premonition or clairvoyance, whatever you label it, it still is your precious gift and one that will never fail you.
I would never understand the full impact of what I had until the summer of 1962 and when all of that situation unfolded, I saw my first split screen in full high definition. To this moment in time the memory of that day is as clear as the day it happened and my fears of my special gift all dissipated. From that moment on I would depend on the signs and wait for the moment when the green light appeared. In the meantime I had to learn about the yellow and red lights as they had profound meanings attached.
So when you are on the radar and are destination bound remember to think about that flight tower, as someone is watching over you and will guide you safely to your landing. Pay close attention......... and just watch your screen.

Monday, December 28, 2009


It seems utterly crazy for time to fly by so fast when you get over 50. The days seemed to never end before you became an adult. Remember the summers that never seemed to end and the dreaded day of returning to school. I think that the whole scenario should change when your younger so the school days would go quickly and when you get older the days need to slow down so you can take every day in and soak up life every second that you are awake. I had often wondered why the days seemed so long back in my youth and now I can come to fully understand why. When your life becomes the routine of work, family and all things sandwiched in between, you completely lose yourself in your responsibilities. I think I liked it better not having any responsibilities, but life hands them to you per your choices. That's it plain and simple. If not for our choices, I know that life would be very dull and uninteresting. As for me, well I can never get enough of wanting new things and developing new ideas. It is like a drug and one that will probably put me in my grave in time. I don't care, hell at least I am living my life as chosen by no one other than ME. We all have to own up to our good and bad decisions. I never really liked owning up to my crap as a kid. It was totally beneath me to be put on the spot and take the responsibility for something I did, and at the time, for me anyway was the right decision.
I believe that no choice is either right or wrong, it is who it affects that puts the label on it. Youth gives you the right to make bad decisions and that is how you learn from all of the choices, right or wrong. By today's standards and the holy terror of what is happening in schools today, I would have to say that my decisions at that time were lame and totally safe from this baby boomers point of view. I could always assume that when I did something I wanted to do there might be some flack from my Mother. She was a Mother and that was her destiny to guide and protect except that I made it very clear I really did not want her opinion. I definitely would handle that attitude differently today. I secretly hoped that she would come around to my way of thinking and at times she surprised me, but most times it was a fight for the finish line.
Any guidance when your young is just irritating. I never thought I didn't know better, so it was truly frightening when in my 30's , I was brought to my knees with a big reality check. The chaos of information just kept getting bigger and I wanted to be, do and have everything. It was painful when I could not access my choices quickly. School at least turned the volume down for those 8 hours I had to concentrate on academics. When the last school bell went off so did my chaos alarm. It was like a reminder bell that it was time to wake up and start the panic again. I honestly cannot believe I made it through those years safely.
We were an average middle class family and we had the things that most kids wanted, for me though I began to yearn for more. I would often times beg my parents to move from our "Death Valley" town where the world's senior citizens lived. UGH! I was like an alien in a far off land. We had it all the a nice home, the beach and a daily amount of sun that you could always depend on.
The old folks dropped like fly's and being just only nine I had seen enough dead ones at the beach. My first dead one kept being rolled back and forth with the tide and it seemed everyone walking by assumed they were enjoying the water or asleep and did not bother them. After about a half hour of watching my first one, rolling back and forth, I wandered down to the lifeguard station to report that I thought something was wrong, and it was. SO another one bites the dust. So by the end of that spring that would make 6 people who traveled their last road via the Gulf of Mexico. My visions of those people would make for some very comical moments later in my life. I used those experiences when trying to win the votes to move from our city . But it was not to be, we stayed put and I had to drop the subject. Well for the time being anyway. I would make it the first thing I did upon graduation.
I really had nothing to complain about but to me it was just not enough and I just did not have the patience to wait for the future. My Dad would always say to me that if you try to force things to happen it can lead you to a wrong turn in the road. I took those wrong turns and it was painful to retrace those steps and not venture down those roads again. I began to learn that you can plan your trip carefully, and make the itinerary as detailed as you want it. You will have your departure date and the arrival time but it is the uncertainties in between that can get to you. I tended to dwell on the in between and never feel the now of any situation. That would always become my chaos. I patted myself on the back as I thought I had it all throughly prepared and set in stone, but believe me there were many mechanical malfunctions that were to surface quickly and unplanned. I didn't know everything after all..........HMMMMMMMMM

Sunday, December 27, 2009


In facing any journey that one feels the need to do, the first and foremost thing is the focus that you must have in order to reach the destination. Any desire that you have must be given the full attention in order to sail over the finish line. All of us have the ability to achieve anything that we desire. Some of us are aware of our abilities to achieve, while some depend on other people to achieve it for them. While we were all not born with all the riches to buy the desire, most of us just have to create it ourselves. In retrospect that is a much better appreciation of what you have accomplished. As a youth, I would have to say that while it would have appeared that I was a total pain in the ass, my parents could never suggest that I was lazy and unmotivated. While most of the kids were being kids, I had a terrible problem with sitting still and would never settle for something that I was not the least bit interested in. As an adult you had the rule that adults are supposed to know better. At every chance I gave that rule a run for the money. I became acutely aware that if you wanted anything, you had to have money. I would have to credit a movie line that I heard many time that emphatically states, "Never, Never, Never do anything......except for money" I took that at face value and whenever asked to do something I would always inquire as to how much I would receive monetarily for the chore. Of course there were the simple household requirements, buy anything beyond that , you had to pay up or I would have no interest in doing it. It was not going to happen without a reward to put in my pocket. No one taught me this I just innately knew that this was my path. Albeit a seemingly selfish path but I was singing my own song. People were not allowed to change my lyrics unless you paid the musician.
I had no idea that I was developing life habits and the consequences that come with choices. Being young afforded me the reasons to make stupid choices and all that would be learned from them but you have no idea how they will follow you the rest of your life. It is in the adult years that you will have to be aware of not slipping back into habits that create bad repetitious outcomes.
I noticed that at age nine I certainly preferred myself over most people. I enjoyed my time alone and used it to further my fantasies and whatever I would want to do. School was easy for me and that made for quick homework and more time to spend on whatever project I had planned for myself. First and foremost was the daily writing of my letters to my PO BOX on the Decca album. Everyday things that happened would be inserted as if I was writing a journal. It seemed
all so important to do at the time and I would benefit greatly in being so diligent, but I would first have to wait till the summer of 1962. I would consider it one of the biggest events of my life and even now as I sit and write it all down, the feeling of how huge this was to me, still floods my heart with excitement. This year of 1962 further promoted my interest in all things hair. The more I went to the salon with my mother the more information I would write down. The more questions that I asked the closer I got to all the fascinating answers. There would be times when the answers were not what I wanted to hear and would have a bit of difficulty accepting it. I even thought I knew better and set out to prove the difference but failed miserably. I at least knew when to throw in the towel. It was easy for me to be three dimensional but still I yearned for being four and five dimensional. With the spatial mind like I had it was no wonder that I wanted something more than was being offered.
So much of what happened in this year would lead me to further my cognitive abilities to know what was going to happen before it would become reality. It would test my fears as I did not want to know some of the things.
I could see the family unit being tested on a daily basis. The stress of my parents unhappiness and the constant harassment from my brother encouraged me to more solitude. When the parents would have their heated discussions I could feel the energy oozing through the plaster walls. Even with the doors closed and the music playing the air was filled with negativity. I retreated to my music for the solace and calmness it afforded me. Life played like a roulette wheel, everyday was a gamble for the daily payoff. began to look at life a bit differently. It would be the year of recognitions and realities.
Marilyn Monroe died that year from an overdose and we still had fears of dying at the hands of Cubans and their missile crisis, since Cuba was so close to Florida. Leave it to our schools to promote the fears daily. I was fed up with the daily "duck and cover"drills and one morning I belligerently asked my teacher why she thought a desk would save us from a nuclear bomb. She had no much for adult guidance. I realized that year that all was not as it seems and being a celebrity had its price to pay. It became clear to me that if you were going to fly that high you had better be prepared for the touch down. I made a pact with myself that year to not get close to anyone and keep all secrets to myself. I held true to that pact and it has become one hard habit to break. I have always kept my landing gear down as I learned early on that the fall from grace can happen at any time. In order to get ahead you have to be prepared to takeoff and know that what goes up must come down.

Friday, December 25, 2009


Trying to face the reality in each day that you live is a tough assignment for everyone. It would be an easy dismissal of all things hard and uncomfortable and just do the fun and less stressful. I would always tend to find the boredom in the easy stuff and just gorged myself on the difficult. It would give me the ultimate high to prove I would do it and most assuredly show the ones who said "no you can't do it" my final approach. I lived for the moment to prove someone wrong, only now I realize that I had to prove nothing to no one except myself. To seek accreditation from someone other than yourself is just a lame excuse for puffing your ego. Only thing is when you are young you don't know what ego is. About the best idea you have of ego was the "stud" in school who loved to gavotte in front of the mirror. The word at that time was conceited.
You know there was one in every school . They placed themselves high above everyone else, only now I realize they were covering for insecurities way beyond what we had information on. In retrospect it is a whole different perspective when your older.
My brother was the cool guy. The teenager who played sports , had the girlfriends and participated in all things cruel to people who did not play by the male rules. It unfortunately became my fate to test those rules to the limit I could push them. By the time it was over, all you would find were shards of misinformed rules all greatly smashed to smithereens. As in all families, sibling rivalry is very common, although you would like to think that your particular family was unique. Well step into reality as every family is dysfunctional in some way, that's what makes it all so wonderful. you either bend with it or you remove yourself from it altogether.
In my case, I just had to stay two steps ahead and would always emerge the winner much to my brother's unhappiness. First off, let me state that even though I don't know my brother well, I feel the love one has in sharing the same parents. He began his teens years by sensing the immense differences that we did not share. He made it his mantra to pick on me as often as possible. It seemed, at the time, to never end but frankly it was only for a few years. I preferred all things gentle and girl like and he would label me with whatever name he would use for the day. I learned very quickly to stay aware of his every move in order to put out any fire he may have tried to start. It would stay with me to this day. I could see the separation of parental influences occurring, Mother was his support staff and Dad was mine. Dad and my brother had many difficulties in liking each other and that only help to end my parents marriage in the future.
All things that seemed difficult would surprisingly show a silver lining just when you least expected. In the middle of one of our sibling fights and while holding one of my albums hostage, while waving it all around he noticed information on the back of the album cover that was a PO Box address. When I asked what it was he explained that you could write a letter to that address then went back to keeping the album away from me. When I got it back he had drawn a couple of moustaches on the faces on the back of the album but the mailing address had been saved from his devilish art work. It was only a matter of weeks later that in school one of the things that we would learn to do was to write a letter and to learn how to address and return address an envelope. With the aid of my teacher and my Mother I began my quest to write the perfect letter to that PO BOX on the back of that Decca album. It would soon become a daily letter writing ritual and one that would last for many years and a pay off , that only one could dream of. I would use some of my milk money to buy the stamps and mail a letter every morning on the way to school. On the weekends I would have two days on information to insert. I had begun writing a journal and had no idea that's what it had become years later. There was so much written in those letters to that PO BOX and in years to come I would have the opportunity to reread some of them. I would then become overwhelmed in doing so as there were the lost memories that were reignited just by the strokes of a pencil.
The childhood sibling torture I endured for a while paid off in the end. He never knew what he set free when waving that album around. Even though he was being youthfully mean it was a big lesson in good things coming from bad situations. In this case it would become monumental and life changing forever. While at this time communication is limited between he and I, I will owe him a debt of gratitude for the moment he discovered my PO BOX address. As I sit here and conclude this post, what I realize the most is that while we were genetically linked we would both wind up having the same DNA qualities of the parents that we were most not wanting to be like.
I have the qualities of Mother and he is very much like our Dad. We all lived in one hangar but our flight plans took separate paths.

Thursday, December 24, 2009


On this day before Christmas, I sit poised to write sentimentally yet somehow my candor does not feel sad. In fact I feel a quiet kind of joy that surfaces when I feel a change starting to occur. The season so far has been busy but not scattered as they can get to be. All the rush to conclude the day with a bevy of gifts never panned out and I am at peace with the fact that I did not play into all the stress. It tugs at my heart to want to see the faces that I love but alas that cannot be at this time, so I am compelled to remember and silently relive the best of times with all of them. Most of you know how that can feel and the insatiable yearning that comes from such vivid recollections.
As the music of Christmas plays softly in the background and the tree sparkles brightly in my living room, I await the presence of my Christmas memories of when my parents were alive. Those were the times that we try to recapture, the age of innocence when you did not know for sure if there really was a Santa Claus. The year of 1960 had only one more week to live and Santa arrived at our house with a bevy of brightly wrapped packages. I still recall the anxiety of my brother wanting the baseball mitt he had seen and I wanted the record player that played the big records. I wanted to move up in the electronic age. I saw them on display at our Sears and Roebuck's store. The salesman's name was Alvin (yes like the chipmunk) and I definitely did not let that one pass by referring to him as the man who has a chipmunk's name. Much to my Mother's dismay she reluctantly went over to view my find. It was a turquoise General Electric automatic record player. It came with a device that was placed over the center silver pole that allowed you to play 45 rpm records in multiples like my first player only this also let you play the album size records also. It became my obsession for the next couple of weeks, and I can't tell you how disappointed I was that it did not come home with us that evening in November. Christmas was too long to wait when I could be utilizing it now. It was not a pretty sight to see me being dragged out of the store. I used my creative skills to let everyone know just how angry I was that I did not get my way. It would prove to be a bit embarrassing for Mother. Luckily my Dad was not in range and my brother was nowhere to be found at the time, but Mother had a way of calming the situation down by mentioning "Santa Claus". While it helped at the moment it only opened the door to fuel a new obsessive desire. While other kids had visions of sugar plums dancing in their heads at Christmas time all I could see were little Decca Records spinning everywhere. It proved to be a very long holiday season for Mother as I was relentless about that damn record player. My Dad's favorite line was "just sit still" and my favorite comeback was "Can I have it NOW" it did nothing except create havoc for me, as I would not win this round till that special day arrived. I can only assume that if there were Xanax for kids my Mother would have had them stocked in the bathroom cabinet.
I would just have to keep the hope alive, and boy did I.
It was this same holiday season that I would have my first chance to go to the beauty salon with my Mother for a hair appointment. I can't begin to tell you how vivid that memory is. It was an absolute dreaded thing that I would have to go with her as my Dad had something to do with my brother and I was stuck going to a "beauty salon with women".UGH! Little did I know what lay in store for me that would magically change my life forever. If I close my eyes I can see the rooms and smell the acrid scents of hairspray, Lady Clairol and the ammonia smell of cold wave perms. There were women in rollers everywhere and each were smoking their cigarettes and drinking coffee and completely engrossed in their favorite movie magazine. It was truly my first foray in a salon and my first introduction to LIZ TAYLOR and RICHARD BURTON on every cover of the movie magazines. I learned a new word that day "trollop" it would soon be added into my own personal dictionary. The hairdressers were the epitome of high hair fashion and each had the latest in coiffures and hair colorings and I could barely keep my eyes off of them. On this visit, Mothers appointment, she was to receive hair coloring from her regular stylist. She was Miss Beatrice (aka:BEA), I read it on her name badge. We instantly bonded and I believe she knew what to expect from me in the future. I had seen my Mother pin curl her hair a lot but this place was amazing to me. Unknowing that it was not ok to follow her in the backroom, I just let myself in and started with the questions. As she took a drag on the cigarette she sweetly began to explain exactly what she was doing. I had my first introduction to Lady Clairol and what I would first call Pear Oxide or correctly referred to as peroxide and when mixed together did magical things to the hair. Between the many questions and observations I became transformed at what took place in 45 minutes. While Mother became Coffee Brown (as stated on the label) the other lady was turning to Sparkling Sherry. Red hair like I never saw before. Eagerly I watched the way she rolled the hair on those cylindrical rollers and pin curl the hair that would not fit on them. Then came the ear cotton and the dryer net that tied under the chin and then she was moved to what appeared to be some kind of space looking object that blew hot air with a timer attached. I just could not get over all of the happenings within the environment I was watching. As I sat there I realized that I wanted to know much more about the workings of this place. I made it my solemn promise to do this as often as possible as I wanted to know much more. Beatrice kept me informed that evening with every move she made and told Mother that she thought I was special. Little did I know that "special" would be referred about me more than once. It would still be a while before the light would begin to come on. I left there overwhelmed
and excited at what I had just seen. On our way home she made a stop at the Sear's and Roebuck's store. I was told to not get out of the car and that she would be be just a minute and on this occasion I did what she asked me to do. I sat in the car engorged in my first "Movie Mirror" Hollywood magazine that I had taken from the salon and did not even notice the box that she had put in the trunk. It would be the best thing I did by not looking up from the magazine.
The box that laid in the trunk was within my reach but I was too caught up in the angst of hollywood gossip to get the clue. The box in the trunk was the clue that my brother would know and use for ammunition to torture me until Christmas morning when under the tree sat the very record player that I had wanted. I recall the thrill of watching the records drop and the thrill of my first LP that came with the player. Music swirled around me all day and night and I fell asleep under the tree exhausted from the long workout called the HOLIDAYS.
The end of the year seemed like a tribute to the many firsts that happened to me during its run.
As I see where I am at this time of my life, I can correlate so many things that led me to where I am today. People that have moved in and out of my life and who dropped off pieces of my future yet I had no idea that it was happening until later in my years. When we spend a lot of time worrying about the what IF's then we have no time for the NOW's. For me I never worried about the things I didn't choose,but would obsess about the future of things yet to come. Youth should just ebb and flow with no strict rules. I created my rules as I went along and let my heart do the walking. With every step I took I found myself wanting to know the exact gate that I was to board from.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009


You would think that at this age that your past experiences would be less painful to think about. Let me assure that while they can be hidden deep in some crevice of your mind they reappear at what always seems to be the wrong moment that you don't want to remember them. It is now my experience that when you begin to write them down the pain attached to them fades and they no longer are memories to painful to think about. The present reality has put them into a context that you can accept the growth that it made you have to do and at that time was very hard to accept and actually go through. We all tend to run away when things get shaky and insecure, and believe me I was truly a marathon runner when it came to having to make a permanent decision. That black door was not ever safe to walk through.........or so it seemed. I have since realized that the most rewarding of possibilities came from the black doors and the darkness that presented itself was really the dawn of light that I needed to make that leap. I would guess it is "The leap of faith" you have heard mentioned once or twice in your lifetime. You may have given it a shrug or a nod but that safety net seemed too invisible. If you have felt that before and did not take a risk, that was your sign that you may have not been ready to do it or you, at the time, lacked the courage and wanted to play it safe. Nothing is ever learned by not taking risks. With each stoke of this keyboard I know the risk I am taking even sharing my life's moments, but I can tell you , I have gained so much in removing the hidden chapters of my life story. We all have our story and need to reread it as there is sooooo much that we missed.
I know that I was complex and most assuredly hard to tame but the natural instinct to be me presented itself , first and foremost, and I just reacted to what felt right to me. Everyone must trust their gut feelings as they are never wrong. We sometimes choose to think we know better than our heart and mind and our situations and personal surroundings play a strong part in making the itinerary that we follow.
It is those moments that we usually wished we had listened to that first bell that rang inside our heads.
After the heady summer and the all the hoopla from the talent show I knew deep inside that I had accomplished something by winning that talent contest yet as quickly as the excitement wore off I began to ask myself the ultimate question " Is That All There Is? " It would be, as I later acknowleded, that it was never the high I was expecting but boy the chase was great. The WOW factor for me was always the work it took to get there. I would soon learn to repeat that action over and over and over again. At the present time I can now say that I have a much better handle on the situations that arise from that subconscious behavior.
If you have a quest you would like to do for yourself , take the plunge and enjoy the water and every stroke you take in reaching the end. Be immersed in the reality that is happening around you, the sights, the smells and the signs that point you in the right direction. I know they are there, just pay attention to the details.
I nievely accepted what I felt and trusted that I would get "there" yet to this day I never really knew where "there" would take me.

When school started back up I knew there was somewhere else I just had to be, and it was not sitting in a school desk doing english assignments. While the teachers made me put my thoughts on hold for 8 hours, I would most certainly have my lunch time to daydream and boy did I do that.
My future had begun to brighten as more details emerged. Deja-Vu became an eveyday occurance and I began to realize the feelings and knew when the events or situations would happen. My Mother would insist on me not telling anyone about my secret and the fear of being found out made me grow silently inward. There were no school library books on the things I was feeling so I would just keep quiet.
Expression was the only way to go and I did it full speed ahead. Much like the throttle of the plane you can gain lift by pushing it forward but at some time it has to be pulled back and that was the hardest part for me. I wanted the momentum of more speed but time would have nothing to do with it. SO I would just have to the rest of the world.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009


The summer of 1960 arrived and much to my delight landed me in the youth center for the whole summer. This would turn out to be the door to no parental guidance, just the freedom to play, do art, music and whatever you wanted to do for the whole 9 hours you would be there. It was my first introduction to group activities in large numbers. They were more exciting than the activities that I so detested in school with the same droll classmates all neatly forced to be together for nine months. The groups at the youth center were from all over the city and made it even more exciting as there were people that you could connect with and who thought the way you did and appreciated you for who you were. I connected with some great kids and decided that I would become the cool guy. It came to me quite easily as I was all over the counselors and would volunteer for just about everything that did not include sports. Consequently I gravitated to the music and art departments. In the youth center there was an area that was designated for the "older" crowd , you know the TEENS! Wow ....Cool...they had a jukebox and a coke machine and a dance floor. I would stand at the door and hunger to get in there as I could hear Brenda Lee's voice seeping beyond the door. I made it my solemn vow to get in there somehow. I observed the entrances and knew when it was empty and when it would get busy. Needless to say I had seen and conquered the room and in less than 10 days was happily invited in to play the jukebox as the older crowd had a money patsy who was forever putting money in to play the songs. They did not have money to play the jukebox and I very happily accepted their invitation to come in and drop the coins. I would rather listen to the records than use the lunch money for food. While in the room I also became aware of the coming and going between the boys and the girls. This area had a janitors room that was not locked and was not used during the day. The janitor arrived after 6 when the center would begin to close for the evening. This made for a great kissing and necking room for the "Teens". One to never miss an observation and an opportunity, I studied with great detail who went with who. Who went in and who came out and who's neck look the most abused or the most lipstick smeared. It was the boys who came out adjusting their pants and the girls were trying to put their hair back in place. I soon realized what a goldmine of information I had stumbled on. I thought that I would keep this to myself and not share this with my new found friends, BUT I would use it all later...........all in good time.
I had an amazing ability to recall the names of singers, lyrics, even the damn letters and number on the jukebox which song corresponded to the singer. Bizarre as this may seem , it came in handy to have that kind of memory trait.
As the summer progressed so did my knowledge of teenybopper trysts and the youth center gossip. I had a hot lead on something that would be occurring at the center. It was my first foray into what they termed as a "Talent Show" and I was all for that. They would be holding tryouts and I would have to have my shot at this and there were no holds barred, I was going to take this and win it. But first I would have to decide what I would do. It was not hard to figure out that I would sing a song or two but then I would have to make the decision as to which songs. IT was pure agony I knew so many but of course would settle on something from Miss Lee.
The tryouts seemed to take forever and there was some great people there. The talent ranged from acrobats to pianists,singers to juggling and everything in between. They were held per the age group and only five would be picked from the three groups. FINALLY they called my name
and as if I had no care in world, marched up there and belted out "Sweet Nothin's" right along Brenda. I remember looking out beyond the youth center stage and saw many of the counselors in shock as this little kid was just letting it rip. I had no idea that I could not do it and consequently I did it. Ah...... the age of innocence before life's realities changes everything. You will be happy to hear that I made the top five, but I still had to defeat the other two groups and this would be the beginning of my journey into the anxiety stratosphere. The show had to be "rehearsed" (that was a new world I learned) and would be held at the end of the summer season. Phew! I at least had plenty of time to get it together. In order to win you would have to have another piece of talent that would be your last attempt to outshine the others so now I had two songs to perform. The other song was needed in case I made the top three.
Days seemed to merge into one another and everyday brought about mind images of how I would feel if I won, or the way I would do my songs. I would toss and turn at night before falling into an exhausted sleep. I could hardly eat and that would only aggravate my mother who stressed that I had not eaten. I could have cared less about the food, I needed to be prepared for my debut.
As the days drew nearer, the rehearsals began. I would learn a lot about the staging, lighting and the order of things that would make a show go smoothly. I may have been young but the whole scenario was amazing to me for my first time. We rehearsed daily for three hours for one week. I grew to have crushes on the counselors who lovingly took me under their wing. I tried to act grown up and behave maturely but at times I gave way at times to my eight year old attitude.
That week of rehearsals flew by and the day of the show arrived so quickly. By this time I looked like a refugee from a concentration camp. When the parents of the other kids saw me they would give my poor parent's a hard stare as if they were starving me. The evening started off with an open house and food and then the talent show. It would start with one from each age group and there would be fifteen acts to perform. There were six judges who would decide the fates of the main Winner, and the 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winners.
I can only tell you that when it came my turn I swear it was my first truly acknowledged out of body experience. I remember the lights and viewing the spotlight directly in my eyes and then I cut loose. I could barely hear the music of "Sweet Nothins" and the microphone suddenly felt so heavy but I clung to it for it held my fate and I was not backing down as I was determined to pull this off. The cheers and applause was deafening but incredibly exhilarating. And was over. The people were whistling and cheering and I was overwhelmed at what had just happened. I bowed and ran off stage. The other contestants finished their performances and then it was announced who the finalists would be. While it seemed like forever I panicked finding out that I had made it to the final three. Then it was time for a 15 minute break before the second round and the three final performances. It was seemed like an eternity. Panic ensued throughout my whole body. While I practiced and practiced the first number I lightly practiced my next song which was "My Baby Likes All the Western Guys" OH MY GOD! How would I do this? How could I top the first song, I had absolutely no idea I was only eight years old for gods sake.
The lights dimmed and since I was the youngest I went first. On the way to the center of the stage I saw a cowboy hat that was used by another performer and borrowed it. I told them I was ready and then the music played and I ad libbed the whole thing, but instinctively knew what to do and gave another rousing performance. It was not in my hands anymore. the other two acts followed and then came the moment of reckoning. I viewed my Mother and Dad in the audience and the huge smile form Mom's face made me a winner already and my Dad I think was in shock as my name was announced Winner of the 1960 NW Youth Center Talent Show. I began to cry and was in a state of shock as they gave me my trophy. I could hardly speak I was overwhelmed that I had pulled it off. I did not have a clue what I was doing , I only knew that I had to do it and let nothing stand in my way. I was sad that the season of summer was ending so soon, but now I had trophy which would inspire new hope for next the summer's talent show.
I could hardly get off the cloud I was on for several weeks. I was aware that when you set your mind to something and you ask your personal genie to grant your wish ,the rest is up to you to believe in yourself enough to make it to the finish line. I took my first step into the dark portal and emerged into the light on the other side. It was the first of many steps into the darkness of the unknown and with each step up I would make another reservation toward my life flight to destinations unknown.

Sunday, December 20, 2009


The year of 1960 was ushered in to our life with a brand new powder blue Chevrolet, you know the one with the wings on the back with double antenna's and AM and FM radio with front and back speakers. The new radio introduced me to the rock and roll music other than what I continuously played at home. I discovered the disc jockeys and dedication music that I had not been to aware of before. I was young and a newbie to transistor radio's and could see this new vista on my future horizon. I soon realized that if you called the station you could ask for the particular songs you wanted played. It was the day of party lines, and that in itself was a new discovery. It was a nuisance when I wanted to call the radio line but was quite an eye opener when you covered the phone and listened to conversations that you should have never been privy to. It was those conversations that would serve me well later as I kept the information secret and on some occasions I was prone to get out of situations that might have caused me problems just by recalling tidbits of what I had heard. Yes I know that sounds so devious but I needed an out at the time and played my hand and we both folded.

I was a challenge to our hometown disc jockey "JOHNNY REBEL " as he grew to know the exact times of day that I would call and always request Brenda Lee. He always surrendered to my insistence and thus began a long term friendship and one that would surprise me later in my life. At this time Brenda was riding high on the music charts and my life was so completely engulfed in her music. It was the beginning of a lifelong relationship. It would make for wonderful daydreams and childhood fantasies. These would become amazing realities in the future but it was so far away at that time, or so it seemed. I would stay locked in my room for hours playing the her records over and over until the parental statute of limitation had been reached.

Around this time I began to notice the fractures in our family foundation and became aware of the personal unhappiness between Mother and Dad. It was much like a volcano, that takes it's time to build up the pressure and when it comes time the pressure explodes and out comes the hot lava that pours down over everything and changes the face of the surface it touches. The changes would come explosively. Most eruptions took place away from my brother and I but there were times when the eruptions would happen in front of us and I would briskly retreat to my room and turn the dial on my record player and with each click of the dial it would take me further away from the chaos just feet away from my door. Thus began my silent acknowledgment to not involve myself with people only I was unaware of how deep this would exist for me until much later. My brother began to show signs of puberty and with it began my days of sibling rivalry. His every yen began my yang to the farthest left. Whatever he liked. I wanted nothing to do with, and whatever I liked he would use it to make fun of me and it would always end with a slug to the arm. My Dad would come to my resque and insist he leave me alone but it was all in vain. I began to show signs of fear and emotional stress. As my mother would tell me, that around my eighth birthday she could see signs of the stress appearing. I remember waking up in the mornings to wet pajamas and knowing that my day was already crashing before it even started. This made great fodder for my brother to use against me and in front of the neighborhood friends. These kids were cruel and I was to be their torture boy. I was the little brother who was forced to tag along but as soon as possible, I slipped quickly back to my safe haven. My Mother insisted that I go along but I could feel his resentment. I can now fully understand how irritating that must have been at his age to have your little brother tag along. I used to think that Mother preferred him over me but have later realized that she was just protecting him from himself. His sun rose and set with my Mother and being the first born it does seem to reason out. With me she knew instinctively that I did not need her as much as my brother did. I was self sufficient, reliant and did not want or need her approval.
It was the holidays and Santa Claus that would bring my brother and I together for some peaceful times. It was those Christmases that are indelibly inked in my heart forever. Even still to this day, when the holidays are near, I still close my eyes and capture the feelings that move me so.

I didn't know what was happening to me as my eighth birthday approached, I just knew that I did not fit the plan for the average boy. I did not relate to the boys in school and around our neighborhood. I kept to myself most of the time and looked forward to the next Brenda Lee album or 45rpm and my Saturday trips to the record store. These things kept me focused but time soon began to be my enemy. My patience was not to be found. The reality of not being able to control everything began and would take hold for a very long time. The subconscious is a powerful thing and being unaware of what I was asking the universe for I had set up my future without having thought about the details. But at the age of eight you would never know the silent fears that make us who we are today. I kept my engines revved up and was always preparing for the take off but life kept pulling me back for the groundings I needed to learn before my I began my ascent. I absolutuely was not ready to fly, at least not yet.

Saturday, December 19, 2009


At a time when most people my age would be taking the time to figure out some kind of retirement plan I just cringe at the thought of even considering something like that. Which would lead me to say that I have no plans to sit still, give up and just wait for the sun to rise and set. It's all I can do to even get to sleep at night as I am thinking that I must eek out every waking hour knowing that I had a full day of life and all it had to offer for the hours that I was living in the now. They didn't have all the scientific terms for extremely active boomer kids like me except "hyperactive". I never really knew that was what I was like because there was so much that I wanted to do in a day. Everyday there were new ideas, plans, wishes and hopes. Every night star that I would see in that Floridian sky had a wish attached. I used to think the stars would fall out of the sky as they were burdened with too many things that I had requested them to do. Every penny I found had more good luck to follow and a clover patch meant it would all come true. Every year that went by time would wave her hand and the movement would blow away more sand from my eyes and I began to notice that life was a big responsibility and not to be taken lightly. You learn many things growing up, a lot from your mistakes, but if your paying attention, you won't repeat them again. However as you and I both know that is easier said than done. Some of us get it on the first try yet others seem doomed to repeat and repeat and never learn their lessons.
I have a terrible problem with being told no and that often put me in the dark many, many times. I would come away with a new strategy every time and some of the ideas worked and some did not. I always kept true to a back up plan and could always find a solution even when all else seemed to fail. I could never shake the feeling that something lurked around the corner that I would miss it if I did not pay attention. To this day the feeling still haunts me but now I know that it will always be elusive and will never be found.
I can't really recollect when that feeling began to shroud me but I would invisibly wear it around me everyday .
My parents were the products of their previous generations. You meet, date, marry and have children and get a mortgage. Mother was a true southern girl and my Dad was from the hills of Kentucky. No matter how you write their bios they were country people to the bone. However I never thought of Florida as southern country but Mother had the qualities of a true southerner.
Dad had the unfortunate luck of being called to war duty twice in his lifetime. The experiences he had seen would bring us to our knees in horror. They also shattered his inner being and made him very hard to reach when it came to matters of the heart. As with all servicemen at that time they had no post traumatic counseling they were just told to man up and forget it all. I will never understand how one could ever attempt to shake off the reality of what he had seen. I was drawn to my Dad because he seemed unreachable at times but make no mistake I am totally my mother's son. That said, is exactly why we would butt heads so often. My Dad would come to my rescue and then quietly fade into the background again. Dad had his own appliance business and Mother worked in the aeronautical department of Honeywell making parts for space crafts. Her work hours were long and her schedule was at night so my parents passed each other in the morning. This would put a strain on their already fragile relationship.
My mother nurtured my love for records and music. It was a double edged sword for her as I never knew how to do things in moderaton. I never seemed to have limits. While most kids would go to the toy department when shopping I found myself lost in the record departments listening to all sorts of singers and exposing my mind to sounds and lyrics that played daily in my head. I would stare for hours at album covers and daydream so hard that I would not be cognisant of my surroundings until I came back to consciousness. This attribute would be hard to overcome as it would occur often and still sneaks in to this present day. That first school years were tough and it was apparent that changes were on the horizon, I was just too young to understand what they would be. As my life moved forward so did my cognitive abilities however I had no idea what they were called, I just knew a lot of things before they happened and it would prove to be valuable in many ways for my future.
The new decade of the 1960's was quickly approaching and it would be the beginning of a decade of unbelievable happenings. I began packing my luggage (metaphorically speaking) because I knew I had a plane to catch.

Friday, December 18, 2009


In real life most of us are judged by the amount of knowledge that we possess. It is with that skill that we can do momentous things in our life if we stay focused. The one sad thing is that we are graded by our knowledge that has been taught by our schools, but we are not graded on our innate perception and our inner clairvoyance to know things that were not taught by our teachers. These abilities came with the whole biological package. No one taught them to you, it was a gift from god or divine entity or whatever you choose to call the inner power that drives us all. For myself, I had been blessed with abilities that would jump out unexpectedly at the most needed times. While I may have been perceived as attention deficit, I knew intuitively when something was right for me and when something was not right for me. I made that very clear from the first day of school. When I could not get the questions answered to my liking I kept asking the dreaded question adults hated the most which was , WHY or WHY NOT"? It was never enough for me to hear "you just have to believe it or have faith in it" , I needed more answers than that. At times it made sitting still in a classroom very difficult for me as I felt that I did not belong there. Everyone was formed as a group and performed like trained lobotomized children. I never felt at peace in their crowd. I luckily had teachers that swelled my quest for further details on any subject that I needed the answers to, but the ones that had no time for me were nonetheless responsible for any attention deficit that I incurred during those early school years.
In comparison to today's school fractures I was in Utopia. Today they carry 45's to school that kill people. When I carried 45's to school it was to play them on a mechanical device and to listen to the music that took away the pain until three in the afternoon. It was the sounds of my records that took away the soot of school on any given day. When I would arrive home until I went to bed the music never stopped. Just ask my parents for they were the tortured souls of my repetitive behavior.
Like most families mine had its up and its downs. I had a brother who epitomized the well rounded sports nut. I completely fell to the other side of that. Not only was I not interested in sports or getting my body hurt, I was the polar opposite of everything he defined as normal. I stayed clean and had an organized room, where his room represented the sports locker room with dirty clothes everywhere and the stench that could only be smelled at the local YMCA. He was the all American boy, and I was from a foreign land who always thought I had been switched at birth. Growing up and trying to fit in with the rest was something I just could and would not do. Being a true boomer child it was an unbearable burden to carry. Once again I will reiterate the fact that I knew instinctively that something was different about me. Over and over it would be confirmed by my loving mother who would always say "honey your just not normal" and when I asked why all she could answer was "That's who you are, don't be anything else" Later as I matured I would receive my answers as to the why I was not the normal everyone was supposed to be. To this day can anyone explain what normal is?
Following the depths of my little mind it was around the end of the first grade that I began to sleepwalk and would leave the house and on two occasions was taken to the local police station until they could find out whose child I was. While I have vague recollections of leaving the house I most definitely remember awakening by having run into a tree or mailbox and both times the same couple had me at their home till my parents were called to pick me up. An article in the local paper revealed the "Sleepwalking Kid Was Lost Again". My days were numbered as a lock high upon the door stopped me from getting out anymore but there would be other nights awakening with my Mother holding me and talking to me and asking who I was talking to in my dream. I would see him often in my sleep and he would tell me things of which would come to pass later. Each time the deja-vu would happen I would have this butterfly feeling inside that would clarify that I had done this before. On many,many occasions I would tell my mother stories that I had dreamed and while she would listen she would shrug them off as just silly dreams a kid would dream. It was the verifying moments that occurred after speaking of my dreams that made her flinch. She would often tell me to keep them to myself as she was beginning to see why I was not so normal.
This instinct or clairvoyance has never left me. It is always there and has guided me even when I had thought it took a hike. The only hike that was taken was me,from myself, when I was dogged down with too much chaos and self pity because I didn't get my way and was to stupid to realize that the timing was not right. The correct timing would occur later. It always has! Like most of us we have too much noise in our lives and we need to reduce the volume and listen to the soothing sounds of our inner self. Uncrowded with dilemma and negativity, just a profound peacefulness.
It is a great thing and too bad that it took so long for it to catch up to me. The great thing is that it did catch up, well actually it never caught up as it never left, I just needed to realize it was there all the time. I can certainly see why Dorothy had trouble getting home from OZ until Glenda turned her focus to herself. It is true that we all have the power inside to do whatever our passions yearn for. The moment I landed on this earth plane I knew that I was destined to take off to places unknown and that I would have guidance, but like all humans we get interference from life, and that sidetracks everyone. Which brings to mind .....A word to the wise .....keep your eyes focused on the runway.

Thursday, December 17, 2009


Most people would think that growing up in Florida would be great, with all the sun and beaches and the tropical climate. What they don't know is that the average humidity would knock you out on a daily basis. The mosquito's thought that humans were a buffet meal and the love bugs never stopped making love. It was most fun to open the drawers of your freshly cleaned home only to find a palmetto bug ( aka...very large roach with wings) fly up your arms, while you screamed unmercifully at a decibel that would call an army from overseas to come to your rescue. Yes Florida was nice but somehow I just knew that I had been delivered to the wrong parents. There had to be another explanation of why we had to live in the land of the living dead. While there were other kids around that I grew up with , the overwhelming amount of retirees that would pour into our town was staggering, or at least to me it was. I never had a calling for the older generation especially the ones that lived on our block. If you played outside, they complained you made to much noise. If you stepped on their property they screamed for you to get off it. It was the most irritating thing to mow the yard and have them yell that a blade of grass had blown into their gravel yard of tacky gazing balls, pink flamingos(before the gays took control of them), and damn heron statues. Being small made it easy for quick getaways as I ran from turning their yard upside down because they yelled at me for no reason. OK , OK there were reasons for them yelling but hey I was a kid and they were somewhere between 70 and death. I had absolutely no patience or compassion, only evening the score. I was an abrupt and outspoken boy and that did not display well to the old folks. We were not to be seen or heard and I made sure I was seen and most assuredly heard. My mother was at a loss, for I feel she must have thought she had gotten the wrong son also. I admit that I was not an easy child but the one thing you could always count on was my opinion. She was always putting out little fires of senile confrontations about something I said or did. On many occasions she would confide that while I may have said the truth I was to be respectful of the old people. N O T!!!! Now that I am flatly becoming one I will not turn out like these people. It must have been hard for some of them as most of their family abandoned them, which I can see why if they were consistently cantankerous, but there were a few and I mean a few that touched my life and helped me to dream of tomorrow. Their lives were ending soon which gave them an opportunity to pass the wisdom along to a very precocious pain in the ass.
The year of 1958 crashed into 1959 with a bang and it was my first New Year that I stayed up to celebrate. This was the year that I would begin school and give my mother a break for 7 hours a day , five days a week. I so remember that first day of school, I would have been called a cling-on but I soon gave way with a bit of trepidation to risk it alone and took my first step of independence without Mom. Things got off to a great start. My teacher was a stocky German lady whose name was Mrs. Schumacher. A full figure lady whose first year of teaching would be to a first grade class. How easy she must have thought to teach young children their first year of school......I don't think she had planned to end up with a kid like myself in her class. After meeting her I asked her why she was so big and then proceeded to tell her she looked like the fat lady in my old maid cards. Much to my mothers chagrin she apologized for my comment and Mrs. Schumacher laughed it off but as my mother would tell me later she knew that she had me singled out already. I really loved school and I loved that we had art and music day. Things were going quite well for me, that is until the day we were being taught about our names, and how to spell them and put them on the gray paper with the dotted lines. She talked about the reasons we had names and that most of us had three names. Hey, this was new to me but if that is the gospel so be it. Seat after seat she went down each row asking each classmate to stand up and say what their middle and last name was, I began to panic as I really had no idea what she meant, and as quickly as I tried to decipher what she was talking about, it became my turn to talk. Oh ghats!!
I told her that I did not understand what she meant , and as she lovingly explained the details again she asked me what did my mother call me at home. Something like "Sally Jean" or "Michael David" and I sat there squirming in my seat and the light began to break and the angels cleared the clouds and the answer came to me like a bolt of lightning. Hell I heard it a million times a day ...............geez how could I forget that .....this was truly a no brain er was afterall three names , first , middle and last name, so feeling quite excited I can remember standing up like all my other classmates and with perfect posture and proper enunciation , I quickly exclaimed...." MY NAME IS JONNY GOD DAMNIT"
Well the look of surprise on her face and not saying anything , I assumed she had not heard me correctly so I took a deep breath and repeated it again and again.
Finally she ran quickly over to me to shut me up and asked why I would say such a thing like that. Hell I had no idea what I had said, my mother said it a lot especially when I was into something, so what was the big deal? I was briskly escorted out of the room and much to my dismay found myself standing in the hall being asked to not repeat that anymore and that I would be sent home that day with a note pinned to my shirt for my Mother to read.
While my Father sat in the room laughing beyond hysteria my poor Mother was completely mortified that I had exposed this information to the class and that my name was most certainly not JONNY GADDAMNIT.
Strike two, already, and it was only the first month of school. What did Mrs. Schumacher have in mind for me, her prodigy of wickedness. I am happy to state that I did form quite a bond with her. She kept me close to her side and nurtured me with death threats if I did not stay well behaved. What she cultivated in me was the acute ability to out maneuver anyone who thought they had control of the situation that I was involved in. I learned by observation and her German upbringing made for the strictness of behaviors but it was not made for my liking and on any given occasion I made that perfectly clear. It proved to me that getting what you want and where you want to be was going to take more strategy and determination. Her driving insistence of normalcy compelled me not to be in the crowd looking out but to stay out of the crowd and look in. For it was there that my seat assignment on my personal airplane came into view.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009


The day that destiny appears pretty much goes totally unnoticed by your conscious mind. I would assume that is because your are so caught up with what is happening that you can't quite focus on the reality of the situation. Destiny comes to us all if we choose to become aware of it and nurture it. When all that happened to me I had no idea just what had happened I only knew that I wanted to find out more, which led to more, wanting more, and more was not enough but there had to be more...............well you know where I am going with this. The desire came to light and being to young to know what it was, I knew I had to pursue what I felt inside instinctively.
As a young boy and still as a mature man I have always relied on my intuition. Some may call it instinct whatever you want to call it , TRUST IT! LISTEN TO IT! It will never let you down. While I did not have the scientific term for it at six years old, I felt it hit me square between the eyes. From that Christmas day forward my life would never be that same again for I was introduced to music and records and my parents would never again have their moments of peace and quiet. This magnificent little box with its incredible sounds emanating from the small speaker in the front lifted me beyond my wildest childhood expectations.
I would have to say that pretty well made it very clear that any hope of being a sports jock like my brother took a nose dive downward.
On that very day I learned some new words like "records" , 45rpm and a record label named
"D E C C A" and the name of a lady that would become my magnificent obsession and inspiration throughout my life.
It would become the first of many incredible journey's that fate had lined up for me. It would become my mantra to which I still live and believe today. The constant daydreams and fantasies that would follow my obsession were the magic genie lamp that I would rub daily and make wishes. It is now that I realize that by believing and visualizing at such a very young age I had set my future and as in all wishes the universe listens and it would be just a matter of time before it would become my reality. I had stepped aboard the the Universal Airplane bound for destinations unknown and now I would begin the next step towards finding my seat but I would first have to run up and down many aisles in order to locate it.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


Upon mind preparation for the journey into this adventure, I began to think of my life to date as a trip to many destinations. Some of my own choosing, some that were chosen for me and of course the unscheduled itineraries that I was not prepared for. A continuous flight to many unknown areas of my jumbled mind that I paid the price for. At moments the fare was cheap and other times it was expensive but most times it was like an award ticket that you won because you paid so much for in order to receive the free flight. I think everyone gets the first class fare but we always feel like we are in coach just hoping for that moment to be moved up into first class. Sad to say that we don't seem to recognize that, and I would have to blame the amount of life distractions on any given day.
Since the holidays are nipping at my heels, I want to retreat, yet here I am still searching for that time when the color of the lights and the smell of the Christmas tree and all the packages under the tree took me to a place of happiness I seem to have lost. At what time did that all vanish? Where can we buy that feeling? Does EBAY have it? If it did I would be bidding on it daily just so I could win the chance to feel that special innocent feeling of incredible joy. My first really cognisant memory of the holiday's and what it had to offer happened to me at the age of six. I am sure that if my parents were alive today they would probably consider that the day they should have taken a flight to an unknown destination so they couldn't be found. My poor mother had no idea what she had done until it was too late. Santa had been good to me that year. It came in the form of a box that unveiled a most unusual device that I , for all my experienced six years, had never seen before. The interesting box that had a plug, a handle and each side of the top had two side locks. My kind Dad showed me the way to open this box in a slow and meticulous way, while I stood by grasping my crotch begging him to hurry up and open it. For oh yes, I just knew that there was something else inside. Finally the top opened and as he raised the top my eyes saw this decal of a white dog sitting in front of a gramophone speaker. Nothing inside but a plastic black round platter looking thing with a round pole object in the center. It was devastating! I can remember so well the disappointment that ran through me. I objected loudly that I didn't like this box and hearing Mother say "How do you know that you don't like it" and at that moment I watched my father drop my very first vinyl record on to the top pole and I watched in amazement as this record fell onto this platter and out came sounds that led me to a destiny that would change my life forever. On that day I discovered I had boarded my first solo flight to destinations that I never knew existed. This is the Christmas day that brought me more joy than Santa ever had inside his big red bag. I keep hoping for that holiday joy to return to me one day and while I am still on board and since this flight has not landed yet, I can't help feeling that this feeling of joy is closer than I have yet to realize.

Monday, December 14, 2009


ON THIS 57TH birthday , it seems to me the right time to begin my blog. To write about me and my life, both the good and bad , sad and happy, ludicrous, sublime, well you get the picture. How to start something like this, well i really have no idea but lets take it on a wing and a prayer and hope it all makes some kind of sense. So let's start with the present, a kind reminder of the days events that make you realize that you are loved by many. Just at a time when you need them the most, and there they are reaching out and wishing you well. It is something that touches your heart in ways that being older allows you to feel when the younger you had to much chaos to focus on something so wonderfully sincere. It's amazing to look back and realize some of the things that you missed being distracted with things, people and issues that you can't quite recall yet were so important at the time. Now I am so grateful that those people who still call me friend made it through the chaotic A-D-D times of my life. The people that mean so much to me and who share in the memories and events that led me to this time of my life. I am still able to function in some normal fashion and still have my momentary lapse into A-D-D at times but now it leaves as fast as it comes. Isn't it funny to think that at this time of your life you actually begin to GET IT? Why weren't we handed this information in school? It could have saved a lot of time and stress. Perhaps we were told but if you were anything like me, and it didn't have a DECCA label attached to it then, I wasn't interested. SO for today's post let me thank all my dear loving friends for taking the time to make me feel special. If only for a moment , the love from it all made the rain in my eyes nourish the love in my heart for all of you , you know who you are. I love all of you!
As I continue this foray into blogging you may see yourself in my writing and funny incidents that may jog your memory. Even more I hope that you will share in this journey of sharing our times together. I have no idea how it will turn out but it will fun to release the memory for all to share and laugh and cry. I never thought I would ever begin to turn out a story about me, but hey what the hell it's my life statement and I have a lot to talk about. I will welcome your comments and hope that you will share some of your memories with me and let's write it down for all to see, to read , and to laugh, and possibly cry but most of all to know that we did what Auntie Mame taught us all: TO LIVE,LIVE, LIVE .....BECAUSE LIFE'S A BANQUET AND MOST SONS-O-BITCHES ARE STARVING TO DEATH.
But oh no ....not us.....we did live it.....and are here to tell it.