Excerpt From The Hood


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“But Grandmother! What big ears you have,” said Little Red Riding Hood as she edged closer to the bed.

“The better to hear you with, my dear,” replied the wolf.

“But Grandmother! What big eyes you have,” said Little Red Riding Hood.

“The better to see you with, my dear,” replied the wolf.

“But Grandmother! What big teeth you have,” said Little Red Riding Hood her voice quivering slightly.

“The better to eat you with, my dear,” roared the wolf and he leapt out of the bed and began to chase the little girl.
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Excerpt from the classic children’s story “Little Red Riding Hood” by Charles Perrault

Photo of my pet wolf, Mischa, chillin’ in her “hood”.

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Food Trippin’


I have never left the grocery store as befuddled as a did today…..

I don’t even know what befuddled means…I just wanted to use a word I haven’t used before.

Stymied didn’t feel right. Aghast didn’t sound right. Catastrophically awestruck is taking it a bit too far.

So…befuddled I was.

We went to the store because my wife wanted salad for dinner…..not as an appetizer…. for the main course.

That’s not what caused the befuddlement.

I don’t know what it is with women and salad. I like salad…I just expect steak after the salad. But that was not in the cards for me this evening. No sweat though, I stopped at McNasty’s and gobbled down 2 McDoubles and a McChicken on the way home from work.

Anyway, we get to the store and retrieve our salad making accessories

Mushrooms
Baby carrots
Avocados
Croutons
Lettuce
Tom-A-Toes…..or is it tomatoes (I don’t know)

You know the basics for a vegetarian buffet…

So we are at the checkout line and I glance over to the office and I see a chip display that left me….

BEFUDDLED

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I have a firm belief that the entire marketing and new product division of this fine Snack food company need to lay off the reefer.

I love chicken. I love waffles. I’m a pretty big fan of chips too….

BUT NOT ALL IN THE SAME BAG!

I can picture the staff meeting when this decision was made.

“Dude….I love chicken and waffles.”

“Whoa…me too dude. You know what else I love…potato chips.”

“Hey…remember that old commercial when the dude with the peanut butter crashed into the dude with the chocolate?….that was cool…”

“WHOA!! Check this out….why don’t we like make chips that taste like chicken and waffles….all the taste without all the mess….we would be made Kings or something….that would be awesome!!…dude.”
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And low and behold…the chips were created.

Speaking of stoners….I bought a bottle of cold coffee at the store…

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To get the full effect you have to say in your best Jamaican accent-

“da groove is not just in da reggae music mon…it is in da beans as well.”

I may never be allowed to go grocery shopping again.

The Happening


There’s something happening here
What it is ain’t exactly clear
There’s a man with a gun over there
Telling me I got to beware

Times are changing. Uncertainty hangs like a thick fog in the air.

I think it’s time we stop, children, what’s that sound
Everybody look what’s going down

Our freedoms that we have so long taken for granted, are now just plain being taken.

There’s battle lines being drawn
Nobody’s right if everybody’s wrong
Young people speaking their minds
Getting so much resistance from behind

“By the people, for the people” has been shifted to we know what’s good for you.


I think it’s time we stop, hey, what’s that sound
Everybody look what’s going down

The bells of “Let Freedom Ring” have become rusted.

What a field-day for the heat
A thousand people in the street
Singing songs and carrying signs
Mostly say, hooray for our side

Our rights that should be our voice have fallen silent.

It’s time we stop, hey, what’s that sound
Everybody look what’s going down

Change is coming. You can hear it in the wind.

Paranoia strikes deep
Into your life it will creep
It starts when you’re always afraid
You step out of line, the man come and take you away

The voices of the many need to shake the foundations of the few.

We better stop, hey, what’s that sound
Everybody look what’s going down
Stop, hey, what’s that sound
Everybody look what’s going down
Stop, now, what’s that sound
Everybody look what’s going down
Stop, children, what’s that sound
Everybody look what’s going down

A new world is upon us. The happening is here.
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Lyrics by- Buffalo Springfield

Bold print by Me

The Doorknob Dilemma


The frantic man stood outside the door of the AA hall looking quite disheveled and…well…..frantic.

It was not the first time I had seen him…it was the first time I had seen him so frantic though.

He started coming to the meetings about a month ago. He was beat down. He had the I’ve had enough and will try anything to quite drinking look all over him.
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And that’s why we are all here. The last house on the left.

The final straw.

When the pain of living with alcohol overtakes the fear of living without it. This is where they come.

I have been coming here for a few years now. I keep coming back here because I need to be around people like me and people like the frantic man.

I see me when I look at him.
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I looked at my watch. The meeting started 10 minutes ago. I hate being late but I have my job because of what people have done for me here. So I get here when I get here.

I walked up next to him and spoke.

“What’s up, man? You going in?”

He looked at me with his frantic jetting back and forth eyes and replied,

“I…I…I…I don’t know if I can….I came back to try again…but…but…but…it’s you alls fault I drank again.”

I paused.

Typically I am pretty sharp tongued when I hear someone placing blame but I held back and kept my reply short.

“Ummm….you mind telling me why it’s our fault?”

The frantic man pursed his lips together. Looked at me straight in the eye and confidently stated.

“You all….took away my higher power…..you replaced it with a new one….and now I have nothing to believe in….I….I…I can’t believe in the new one…it’s too shiny and new. The old one had defects like me…I could understand that one….but you all HAD to change it. Now…I have nothing.”

My head was spinning because of his broken record way of speaking, but I kept my focus and continued to engage him in conversation.

“Slow down, bubba. No one here has the ability to take away your higher power. You turned your will and life over to the God of your understa…”

He interrupted before I could finish.

“No….no…no. I hadn’t gotten to step 3 yet. I don’t believe in God. I was working my way up to that.”

I was a bit miffed, but I am not one to give up….I had to know what he was talking about.

“So….what gives?”

He exhaled with a defeated sigh.

“I was working with someone in here who said I needed to believe in a power greater than myself….he said it could be anything…he…he…he said it could even be that.” He said as he pointed to the door.

Specifically the knob on the door.

I rubbed my index finger and thumb into my eye sockets (I think it kept me from screaming or laughing out loud. I’m not sure which one). Then I looked concernedly back at him (as he continued to point at the knob) and replied.

“So…you believed the doorknob could keep you sober?”

“Yes,” he replied, “but not that one. The old one that was on there last week.”

I paused….again.

“So….let me guess what happened. You are trucking along just fine until you came to a meeting and the doorknob was changed….you believe it was done to harm or deter you from staying sober. You started drinking again because of it and now you are back to try again….but can’t because of the new doorknob. Am I anywhere near the bullseye so far, Robin Hood?”

He dropped his pointing finger to his side and dropped his head before speaking.

“It sounds stupid when you say it…but that’s what happened….I don’t have a shot at this, do I”

I looked him smiled…hell, I even giggled a bit and said to him,

“You got more than a shot, dude. You just learned a lesson.”

“What lesson?”

“It’s hard to put faith in man made objects….they break or are only reliable for a short amount of time. You may not believe in “God” per say, but a lot of people in here don’t either. We just try to learn to rely on a spiritual side of things instead of a bottle of spirits. I will help you out if you want. We will talk after the meeting. You ready to go in?”

I patted him on the back and motioned for him to open the door. He grabbed the handle and looked me in the eye and said,

“Can we keep this doorknob story to ourselves, please?”

I just smiled and got him a cup of coffee and we sat down to participate in the meeting.

I thought to myself…

“If he only knew that I was the one who changed the broken doorknob….what are the odds that I would be the one to be here when he wouldn’t go in?”

I just continued to smile and shook my head a little.

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To Bale Or Not to Bale….That Was Always The Question


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It is strange to me how when I am driving home from work, I sometimes pass something that triggers past memories.

Hence the bales of hay.

I stopped and planned to take a picture…..but my phone/camera was dead. I settled for a “Google shot” instead.

I have never worked on a farm. The hay was more of a symbol.
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I used to get arrested a lot. It all started with traffic warrants…..

I could never wrap my head around paying for a ticket once I got one or 4 at a time.

I never paid for them once the warrants came either….

I always paid for it with an arrest.

Of course there was a shoplifting arrest also.

With each arrest I always had 1 question…

“Hey, who can I call to bail me out?”

I had lots of answers.

-parents
-friends
-girlfriends
-brothers

They would always come to my rescue. I never realized how much of a burden I put on them. It was embarrassing for them to have to do it.

It was for me too….the first time. After that not so much.

I just expected them to do it. And they did….until they didn’t.

The last straw, if you will, was my arrest for 2 felonies.

I made call after call.

“Please bail me out.” To Mom

“Please bail me out.” To friends

“Please bail me out.” To Brothers

After making calls for about 3 weeks, in the jail cell. I gave up.

1 friend visited me while I was a resident of the psyche ward…once.

Never saw him after that.

My brother visited me 2 times in the 4 months I was there.

The bail was finally too heavy for anyone to want to get me out from under it.

I was pissed that they would bale on me in my time need…..In my real time of need.

I carried that resentment a long time.
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I now see it as a blessing in disguise. The more they bailed me out the less responsibility I took for the actions that got me in jail to begin with.

They finally said,

“Hay, it is time you took care of the bale yourself.”

Ok…they didn’t really say that but metaphorically speaking that I what I heard them say.

Since getting sober and taking responsibility for my actions, I haven’t had to call anyone to bail me out of jail.

Because I haven’t been in jail….or arrested….or earned any warrants.

I have made amends to my family, friends and even an old girlfriend for my past actions and reactions to how I treated them in the past.

I am still a work in progress.

But I leave the hay baling to the people who can handle it.

Those things are heavy.