I Hate You, But Not Really

(This is based on a true story told to me by a Chief Juvenile Probation Officer.)

~~He knelt down on his knees, looked up at Jesus on the cross, and shook his fist. “I hate you”, he said loudly, “I hate you.”  He said it over and over.  Soon he was screaming with every fiber of his being. Louder and louder, with more and more pent-up emotions streaming out of his voice. “I hate you! I HATE you!  I HATE YOU!”~~

The boy had suffered emotional and verbal abuse from his mother since his birth. When his father was around, which wasn’t a lot, it was always the same song, second verse.  He could count on one hand the times a physical beating for some slight or imagined offense hadn’t followed a visit with his father. Continue reading I Hate You, But Not Really

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Help This Boy

Sometimes pictures get me.  It sounds silly. Maybe it is.  But sometimes, a picture hits me in my core, cutting, ripping, tearing away at soul and sinew.

Some pictures, some stories haunt me as assuredly as a ghost in a graveyard.  I can’t sleep without it popping into my dreams. I can’t concentrate without it popping into conscious thought.

This picture sticks with me like a chain around the heart:

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Continue reading Help This Boy

The Ire of Staying Healthy

My doctor told me during the exam it was time.

I took a deep breath.  I knew this day was coming.  I resolved then and there to cowboy up and get it done.

I’ve been flying under the radar for several years.  No problems. No issues. No medicine. Just the way it should be!

But this year, instead of the vampire nurse just draining a week’s worth of bone marrow work from my arm, the doctor tells me he wants to check out several other things.

First, a sleep apnea study — No problem. Sleep is my one of my natural talents!  Passed with flying colors!

Second, a stress test — Continue reading The Ire of Staying Healthy

Homecoming and Prom

Two of the worst nights of the year are Homecoming and Prom, and Saturday night was Prom.  Some people may think that’s an odd thing to say, but to dads of teenage daughters, they get it in spades.

It’s just a snapshot of the future, way, way off in the future hopefully, when a dad has to walk his daughter down the aisle.  They’ll be radiant in white flowing gowns, smiling all the way, but the dad walks beside them white faced, grimacing, needing Pepto-Bismol and anti-depressants!

A daughter’s “happiest day ever” is like the most dreaded day to most dads. It’s like taking a rare, precious, porcelain doll worth millions of dollars and handing it over to a gorilla! Continue reading Homecoming and Prom

Hermit House

It was sad, really. She has no one. Maybe it was a conscience choice a long time ago. Maybe it was a forced decision that she didn’t want. Either way, the results are the same.

She lives alone in a nice neighborhood that we’ve driven through a thousand times. Her hedges are rarely trimmed and there are plants growing in the gutters. The yard is always green, but the grass always looks like it’s half grown, half mowed, somehow suspended in animation just enough to give the yard sort of a kept, but not maintained look.

She has a big sprawling house that is dark and uninviting, almost like where a horror movie could be filmed. In the four plus years of driving through that neighborhood, I’ve never once seen anyone outside, and the garage door is always closed. Occasionally, but not very often, there may be a light on at night somewhere in the house, but it would only be one, if any.

We were driving home through that neighborhood coming home from a symphony at 10:30 PM at night.  Janet, my wife, told me we had just passed an old woman sitting in the grass by a mailbox waving for help. I turned around and there she sat. I left the car running with the headlights on to light the area as we checked on her. Continue reading Hermit House

Little or Lot Faithful

The lady blurted out to the Walmart Customer Service worker, “I’m the one you called a few minutes ago about the purse!”

I was waiting in line and glanced at her.  The worker asked her to describe the purse.  She did, and was told to wait just a minute while the worker went to the back office.

She was casually dressed in blue jeans, flip flops and a bright, pink Fight Breast Cancer t-shirt.  Her hair was about half an inch long over her entire head.  In fact, I wasn’t sure if she was being treated for cancer, or just wearing her hair short.  She waited with an anxious, lip chewing expression on her face. A minute later, the Walmart worker came out holding a small red change purse.

Continue reading Little or Lot Faithful

The Waving Man

There used to be an old tire store up Main Street surrounded by properties that have all seen better days.  Years ago it was a full-service gas station built in the late 40s or early 50s out of cinder blocks and mortar.

For the most part, however, the old building was insignificant.  If it hadn’t been for the man outside, I would’ve never even noticed the place.

Years ago the tire store was painted white, but oil, grease and dirt make a dark entourage at the base of the walls up to a chalky, white at the top.  The concrete around it was patchy and dark, stained with layers on layers of grease, dripped motor oil and a host of other dried automotive blood.  Continue reading The Waving Man

Income Tax Blues

I hate, Hate, HATE taxes!

And thanks to more government regulations, some tax 1099 Forms that have a REMIC/WHFIT didn’t have to be mailed out until March 15. They don’t extend the tax deadline for the average Joe though. (Joe…though….see what I did there? Made a rhyme!! 😉 )

It’s not that I mind paying my fair share (another rhyme!) as long as the fair share is spent wisely.  But by the time the bureaucrats in government finish inflating the arm and leg paid in taxes, the fair share will only be enough for a government contractor to buy a hammer and box of nails!  Or maybe pay some healthy, able bodied man to stay home and draw housing, food stamps, Medicaid, welfare and a free cell phone each month while I work.  Whichever you prefer, Uncle Sam. You decide. Continue reading Income Tax Blues

Verti Has To Go!

My nemesis, Verti, has got to go!  I’m tired of her magical spell. She’s not nice. In fact, she’s downright cruel. She keeps things stirred up and puts her own twisted spin on everything. She’s really mixed up!!

It started with a headache for a couple of days, which in and of itself is unusual for me.  But then it turned into light headedness.  I guess it’s obvious I may be light in the head …. but this isn’t a ditz light-headed … it’s a someone is playing spin the bottle in my brain light-headed!

I was at work walking in the plant and some sneaky rascal started moving the concrete floor! The world was spinning like a county fair Tilt-A-Whirl!

Continue reading Verti Has To Go!

Is It Really Worth That?

He whizzed by in the gas station heading to the drive through car wash around back. If I hadn’t stopped, he would’ve hit me. He didn’t even notice. His mind was on his cell phone call, not driving. I ended up waiting in line right behind him.

He got out of his truck while in line to unscrew his radio antennae. On his back window was a bumper sticker with “Coach” and his first name after that.  He was still talking on his phone with great animation. Continue reading Is It Really Worth That?

Stories about family, faith, friends and funnies. Pull up a chair. Grab a cup of coffee and laugh, cry, ponder and inspire about ordinary events of this wonderful, ever changing, bubbling pot that we call "every day life".

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