Friday, October 27, 2017

Brown Sugar The game is over- Memories.

rediscovered this song while scanning Billboard's old chart, and through the
mean spirit of time had forgotten what a brilliant record this is. It is
amazing how a piece of music dislodges great memories from our brains. The
first time I heard this I was waiting for my then girlfriend staring at the sky
in the middle of a field. This record even sounded great coming from the single
speaker of a 1971 VW Beetle's AM radio.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

I'm writing a book- or- I'm trying to stay sane, but failing miserably

“It is often in the still of the night when your thoughts are the most profound. Eagerly write them down and change the world.”

I’m writing a book. But first a story:

I was a truck driver.  My most recent job was delivering milk for a large New England dairy. On a fateful day in 2011, September 12, to be exact, my life changed forever.
The day seemed normal, a Monday. Small load, but picking up lots of empty milk crates from the weekend sales. At my LAST STOP, I was hiking myself up into the trailer to secure the load, when my right foot slipped on all the “goo” - scrap milk/cream/what have you that gathers on the floor of the trailer during a work day. I heard my knee pop and it HURT! By the time I got home, my knee was purplish-black. 

I’ll truncate the story a bit. My bosses wouldn’t let me see a doctor for two weeks. Finally, due to the pain, medical attention from my own doctor was sought out, and after many, MANY tests, she determined that I tore the meniscus in my right knee fairly badly. I fought with my employer and the insurance company over coverage, even though the proper forms were filled out at the time of the “Incident.” Orthoscopic surgery was finally performed in February of 2012. While I was out for the required recovery, all the while working towards making a full recovery, my employer fired me, using the excuse I couldn’t perform my job function anymore. 

I retained a lawyer, and after many hearings the court ordered my employer to pay me. By this time due to the lack of physical therapy, I needed a SECOND operation which was finally ordered for August of 2014! During that operation, my surgeon determined that the meniscus tear was beyond repair, that I needed a knee replacement, most likely due to the insurer’s procrastination. A full knee replacement was “installed” in March 2016, a full four and a half years after the accident. 

By this time, my CDL, Commercial Driver’s License, had expired, and due to a change in injury language from the Independent Medical examiner, I had to downgrade to a car license. I thus had to give up the only profession I trained for and executed for 30 years. 

I finally settled with my ex-employer, but it was a fraction of the money I had lost while waiting, and a smidgen of what my potential earnings would have been the rest of my working career.
Wait! This isn’t about an injury! It’s about a book! Accustomed to working seven days a week at the time of my injury, short drives and walks in nature to were what kept boredom from setting in. While walking around and being quieted enough to listen, the voices of nature talked to me, short profound verses popped into my head at random times. Such as: 

Ignorance speaks factually with little regard for actual facts.”

The grass is still as green in the night as it is in the daylight.”

Touch 7 trees today. Hold on tight. Let them tell you their secrets.”

 Some are silly:

Somewhere near your home there is a tree with a pink window. When you find it, give a dollar to the small man who lives there. He will reward your diligence and generosity.”

“Put sunshine in your pockets. Save it until it rains. Let the sunshine out to make a rainbow.”

“The world cannot get by without you. Your voice is the only one like it in the world. Besides, who would wear your clothes?”

Some just beg you to think:

“Ask the night why it is dark. Ask the day why it's light. Listen closely while they tell you.”

Hate dies a slow death, but once we stab it in the chest, we must endure what emerges from the wound. “

“While driving, set your trip odometer to zero and drive 6.7 miles. See where you are. Look for something orange.”

Some just ask that you be a good neighbor:

“Smile into a mason jar and use the light to write a letter to change someone's life”

Wave to every gray car you see like they are your friend. In that small shared moment, you are their friend.”

Smile and say thank you to the next person you see.”

I still haven’t a clue where these come from, but I wrote them all down. I’ve complied enough for a book, titled: “Bring Your Own Bagel, or Profoundities and Other Snippets of Mindfulness. Life for me now is to appreciate the smaller and more mundane things I used to take for granted, the power of a tree, or the silliness of clouds. Hopefully the book would inspire thoughts of those types. A book that has really inspired me on the creative process is Elizabeth Gilbert’s “Big Magic.” Read it if you have the time.

 My vision would be a book of these, along with a monthly calendar. Are people still into those? Along with a daily app sent to your phone with a saying and a meaningful picture.

Since I’m looking for a whole new career at this age, I’ll be 60 in a few months, I figure this might be the way to bide some time.

 So I will leave you with the two that have the most meaning to me:

 “The universe has been around a long time and it may be getting tired. Always meet it halfway and it will greatly reward you for understanding.”

“It is often in the still of the night when your thoughts are the most profound. Eagerly write them down and change the world.”

Monday, August 21, 2017

Eclipse time! Or the day I get to go home.

Today is the day of the total eclipse in North America. I get to go home. Yeah!

I came here many, many eclipses ago to observe. I was fitted with a body of the most evolved species on the planet, and after being here, that was a mistake. Humans are not evolved as they think they are.

For one, my commanders will be horrified that the self-described "most evolved" species on the Earth is really not as advanced as they think. They control most of the "stuff" on their planet, but are in danger of destroying their home. Some people are aware, but most go on with their daily life uncaring that they are contributing to a problem.

There will also be a split class on this Earth.There is a war between the "Haves" and Have-nots." Most "Haves" never want to depart with their "stuff" to just give to the "Have-nots." Some well healed "Haves" revel in their ownership of three homes, seven autos, twenty pairs of shoes, fully stocked foodstuffs, etc., while some "Have-nots" have none of the aforementioned "stuff." My gut feeling is that this class gulf might eventually result in the destruction of the most evolved species on the planet.

Their leaders are at fault, because humans are governed by humans. The traits that make humans great, will eventually be their undoing ,if left to their own devices. A few humans have risen above the rest and realize this, but they are in the minority and their pleas fall mostly on deaf ears.

But I'm going home. I will miss the beauty of this planet. I've fallen in love with the plant life, the lower species and find pleasure in each day. I have found beauty in even the mundane daily activity of the closest star crawling across the sky. My memories of the quiet cries of snow, the laughter of rain, the perfect shade of blue in the sky, the symphonies of insects, creating the basis for choruses of birds, will stay me long after I've departed.

There is hope. You have a terrific invention called LOVE! Love the things I have mentioned. HUG objects, both seen and unseen. You are the most evolved species on the planet and YOU can LOVE! LOVE is the medicine used to heal EVERYTHING! 

Forgive me if this is a rambling note, for I have just received my orders this morning. Forgive any grammatical errors because I have never got the nuances of all the languages here on Earth. Which, in my departing opinion, if one of the problems here on Earth. If you people spoke in the same words, as we do on my home planet, you could solve a lot of your problems. Language is your invention, and your savior, but also could be your undoing.

I might be back- but I doubt that. I have many other planets and  peoples to observe. I will sign out using my Earth name:

Frank Galpin.

Among my own people I am known as Time.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Long live Toby


We get attached to our pets. They become part of our lives until they aren't there anymore.

I'm having a particularly hard time letting Toby go. I hurt my knee at work in 2011 and have been home since. He's been with me through two arthroscopic surgeries and a full knee replacement. Under my feet, mostly and I had to watch out for him while I was learning how to walk and strengthening my leg.

The past year Toby was failing. He needed insulin shots twice a day, and finally a tumor started near his intestines, he was in pain and never could get comfortable. Finally he stopped eating altogether. So the family had to make a hard decision to let, as we sometimes called him, Sponge-Cat-Tobe-pants go.

  But this isn't about Toby, or me. It's about my brother and his wife. They've been only married for a few years, but my sister-in-law came into the relationship with two wonderful dogs. Now in 2017, both dogs were well over 15 years old and getting sick. The humans had to make some tough decisions.  My family had to put one down the week before I put down Toby, and just last Friday they had to let the second one go. I sat down this morning and wrote out a pet sympathy card. I'm not going to use their names, but they don't need to be included:

Sorry for your losses.

Pets are animals, but they are also family. Like family, they are always there for us when we need them the most.  In happiness, a partner in crime, a compadre who shares our sense of humor; their antics comfort us, bringing us joy and laughter. A true friend who loves us unconditionally, a friend who we share and understand private jokes with. In sadness, they are a furry friend, a shoulder to weep upon.

Saying goodbye to our pets is one of the hardest things we must face. The decisions we face in their final days are heart breaking, we always rationalize that it is better for our friend, but that doesn't make the decision any easier. The emptiness we feel afterwards is sometimes worse than losing a human.

Always take comfort in the memories you store and lock away in your heart. Love and hug those still in our world. It is said that time heals all wounds. There is a small piece of the wound that will never heal. Be grateful that it never heals completely, for that small sliver, is the gateway to your long lost friend. 

 The last picture in my favorite. I had ordered floor mats for my Prius, threw the box on the floor and Toby claimed it as his own. I always made sure he had a towel to lay on, and he used that as his bed for an entire year.  Please excuse any grammatical errors in the post, I'm crying while typing.

 So. if you have a furry, feathery, even slimy best friend- count your blessing and give them a pat from Toby.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Hey! Is this thing on? I'm going to start posting more often. My last post was three years ago on the dot! Maybe I'll be taking some gusts on--- any ideas, and if you want to write something, just let me know.

Hugs to all-