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The Ghost Shadow
By Donald A Yates
Monday, August 27, 2007
Rated "PG" by the Author.
Boyhood is a stepping stone to Manhood. One marries has kids and one day it's over.
The Ghost Shadow
pdreamover from boyhood to manhood.
©2006 Don Yates
“It's the Idiosyncrasies of the boys that provide the entertainments of life.”
Dedicated to the good old boys of my youth, may they all end up in glory.
Doting Point – a tale of a Boy passing from youth to manhood.
Here’s to the boys that came and went,
Here’s to the boys that came back spent.
Here’s to the boys that looked and turned,
And ran like hell, a lesson learned.
For all the Boys who endured the test of crossing-over from Youth into Adulthood, - This I say with vigor, Say-La-Vi and happy trails.
Life is like textiles; many threads must be woven together to make a finished piece.
Let's face it; infancy is not a time or test of youth nor for the very, very young. Childhood is simply an introduction, an exploration if you will, into adolescence. It begins with pooping the pants, a floppy head omitting endless drool, excursions into an unknown world, wearing applesauce and the challenging of every adult’s endurance. It’s a time of vocal expression, smelly discharges and testing the dog’s temperament. The child crawls from adolescence and steps into surefootedness laced with delirium. It might be called maturing or progression but we all know it's only the slippery slope of growing up.
The learning curve challenges the sanity of mom and dad as the little bugger teaches them the value of patience. Ah yes, patience, indeed, a witless idea; that devious figment of our imagination we would like to say we have control over. But regrettably, patience is a virtue, a trait I have little of, so I can rightfully say my patience has been tested to its’ very limits.
And so it goes, this life’s learning cycle, with the little bugger’s wanting, needing, demanding, day in and day out: doing, giving, sacrificing; and the wife; forget it, she gave up long ago, in meeting the constant ego demands of the offspring. Mom and Dad, well, intimacy flew out the window along with pride and respect. So the little curtain climber wriggles his/her way between the sheets and into the sentiment of the parent trap.
I remember my time, scooting around the floor, (nick name, scooter) knocking over everything filled with liquid and getting into mom’s makeup. I was a regular hellion in this stage of inquisitive wonder; everything was ok. Haven’t you heard “oh, he’s only a little oaf, he’ll grow out of it,” Ha, this my friend is a ticket to disaster.
The memory of one’s youth taunts the senses like a whisk of smoke on an evening breeze. Like a freed spirit floating upon the wind and as it twist and turns it silently passes by sending a shudder of penance to a confused mind. But then, why not? Life is no more than a fantasy, isn’t it? Well no, it is a monumental fancy, a whirlpool of make believe possibilities that welds up in the pits of the soul seizing the very life force then spitting it out in great breathtaking chunks.
For a boy, there is no direction, where is the handbook, or at very least someone who is willing or equipped to offer advise of what to expect. There are so many don’t do that, or smarten ups that it’s no wonder boys stay in a state of bewilderment, even unto adulthood. The boys take their browbeating and crawl away like licked cures; trembling at the mere mention of using the brain. They get into trouble trying this and that because their adventurous hearts are in search of what is permissible not what is passable. Boys don’t be disillusioned; advice is on its way!
When advice comes it is usually as intelligent as a grumbling toad on rock like, “carry on boy, your legacy is waiting.” What the Hell?? What a freighting thing to look forward to. Legacy is waiting; who the hell made up that load of crap? Perhaps dear old dad’s, no disrespect intended, legacy is not so great. And dear old Great Grandpa was a horse theft. Possibly one could, after all, strive to be an astronaut or president or something of the highest caliber, or even, what the hell . . . a beach bum. How about “work hard and everything will be all right”, you know, “fruit of your labor” and all that baloney. Hay, I know a lot of guys that worked hard and ended up as poor as a church mouse besides, who is qualified to advise a boy anyway? Boys are notoriously . . . unadvisable, they just can’t seem to get it through their thick heads.
After all, no one issued a guidebook, or instruction manual or put up road signs along the way, just guess and go and where the chips fall, there you are. Hitch your dreams to an out-of-touch, druggy, speeding, foul-mouthed, advice-giving icon and go to it. After-all icons are known for prudence, right? Sure they are, like a bear wouldn’t shit in the woods either. The thing is, no one said draw a road map or get lost, and boy did I get lost, but what the heck at least I was not alone in my disillusionment. I joined the ranks of the lost, and strode into the future like a bumbling idiot.
Like a possum stupidity lumbers onto the highway and becomes road kill, I too stumbled into the bright lights of oncoming disaster. I was so blinded by the glitter I became paralyzed and my brain became numb, there was just no getting past it I too became road kill. That’s right kill, dead, no longer alive, a shadow of a man. Shoot, I not only didn’t know what lay ahead for me; I couldn’t even sort out the reality of it, if I had I would have coward down in panic or turned and ran like a jackrabbit. I certainly would have made no sense out of it all because there is no sense in it.
The future it seems, is no more than a collection of one’s choices; good, bad or indifferent and get this, it is also an assortment of others stupidity that ultimately manipulates your meaningless path. And where does it all start? Childhood may be just a warm up for the biggest trial of all . . . BOYHOOD! That’s right it all starts from boyhood, that’s when the grand illusion is at its’ highest perceptional trickery. It’s a time of gullible guesswork and deceptions. Time itself becomes a shadow-line of patience, and I, well hell I gave up my independence and caved in to popular idealisms. You know, like girls never fart or sweat or tell a dirty joke and oh yes, the Government is everyone’s friend. HA Was I ever disillusioned. But, at the time in leave of a good icon, it was, after all, the popular thing to do. Follow the crowd and all that bullshit. Well, now it’s called political correctness, yah, right!
Isn’t it hope that is an anchor to the soul? It is both sure and steadfast, and it is hope
that crosses the threshold into the unknowns of life. Hope is that glass revolving door that you pass through with expectations of being noticed. The hope is that you will exit the other side unscathed. But alas, some fall into the abyss never to return while others fall into shit and come up clean as a whistle. Isn’t it ironic that some bad boys end up being good men, just goes to show . . . there’s always hope.
I can say I was happy and actually fortunate in my boyhood in that there peace in my family and camaraderie amongst the fellows of our little town. We shared in all the trials and tribulations of boyhood as we slowly went through metamorphoses and exited the cocoon emerging as it were into blossoming young men. Shoot, no one bothered to warn us of the dangers that lay ahead for plowboys of our caliber. We strutted off like swaggering fools directly onto the rocky road of life, no I dare say, the stony path of assumption. We were simply noisy little boys and as most boys we had a certain curious nature that, now and then, prompted us to actions of dalliances. We where were we were when we were and doing what all boys do, mischievousness. In our youthful prognoses we forecasted fame and fortune, well, at least leisure and a handmaiden or two. But alas, life is a speeding train that is impossible to slow down. If you don’t have a ticket to ride, you are left on the side. And, man, that track is forever when you are crawling in the dirt.
We were a tight knit club, us boys, no girls invited. They would have gotten in the way of our adventurous souls anyway and never kept up with our biking treks. To the desert we would go, armed for an invasion and ready to stand for whatever was popular at the time. We shot our own food and roasted it on an open fire, not allowed now day’s. Everything is protected from the likes of the boys; who eats rabbit now day’s anyway? We thought it was great, I guess setting around an open fire and feasting on rabbit is not the new age campers idea of a good time. Crap now days they have to have a hundred thousand dollar motor home to “camp” in. And heaven forbid they run out of gas. Man, those were the days. A boy could fart in the wind and feel the breeze blowing over his balls while he took a piss and no one was there to chastise him for his simplicity.
As young boys we passed the test of wonderment and yes, even girls. I am not sure exactly when they crept into our activity, but the rules of the game changed, seemly overnight. Excuses began to rule over adventure. “I can’t go I have to pick up my girlfriend,” crap the brain settled into the loins and suffocated.
It was no longer “us boys” for that contact, that first glimpse of promise, yes, that hope of, of . . . manhood, our hormones were activated and we were never to be the same. Ah, yet another cruel joke, God plays a lot of them on the boys, at least someone has a sense of humor! Seems like the little red head takes over the brain at the mere scent of perfume and powder. And the wispy flow of soft curly hair, forget it, big boys have no backbone, they simply melt like butter in the noonday sun. As boys we resisted it all, after all, we had bigger things to do . . . no we had mountains to climb. The challenge of youth, excursions into the unknown, life was a quest and we couldn’t wait to venture into it. Risk it all, go for the big prize, ha, ha, those damn girls would not go away. Shoot, we walked around with our heads up our butts until we were dazzled into manhood. Mesmerized by the maidens, the tempest of old, the sirens driving men upon the rocks of life.
Next where the sirens dwell you plow the seas;
Their song is death, and makes destruction please.
The ruling prognosis of picket fences and two or three little buggers romping around the yard turned into pocked lawns and toys in the driveway. Wives, kids and never-ending jobs of rotating doors, and faceless people, sucked the hope from the boys and turned them into men. And men they became, forfeiting their youth, camaraderie and fellowship, for status - - and hope became nothing more than a dream.
There He was.
I found myself early, but didn’t know what to do with it. So, at times, when I was alone, I called him Weenie, I would sit around and hold him for comfort, contemplating his purpose, like he was some cherished find no one else knew about. Weenie became a true friend in my times of solitude, and I would talk to him as a trusted campaign. He never complained or tried to run away, he just lie there and gazed up at me seemingly as confused as I. He became a hardheaded little bugger, but then, with all that holding it’s no wonder. When the girls came on the scene, the little guy became restless and tried to conquer my brain, and did on occasion. Dang near fell for his ambition to plug every hole we came across too. I found my legs going weak and by brain becoming muddled then the “opposite sex” came into my presence and all the while he would stand up and laugh at my weakened state. There, I went and said it, ‘OPPOSITE SEX” the two words go together, don’t they? Any time there was even a little chance of sex, little Weenie, enticed me to do the opposite of good logic. Hell, boys always do the opposite of what they should when sex is involved.
Man, little Weenie and a little sweetie could heat up the inside of a 56 Olds, on a cold night, couldn’t even see through those fogged up windows. Quite frankly, didn’t want to either.
When a boy has passed the challenges of youth, it is said he “makes the grade” like he has gained permission to pass into a special sorority or land of enchantment. It’s like getting a ticket to pass into a garden, with its’ yellow brick road glowing with promise. Every twist and turn in the yellow brick road brings a seduction of the mind and tempting of the senses. Each little stand along the way contains its’ temptations of sorts. What was, “would like to have”, easily became, “I must have” even though it meant giving up one’s integrity. Although, the road is well marked and widely traveled, a young man is given into the charm of submission; it’s an inborn need for experience to satisfy his ever-doubting mind, and stupid demeanor. The thing is, one can be educated from dumb, but stupid last forever, so it is in one’s interest to just be dumb.
Most young men recognize the actions of those who came before them with eagerness, willing to accept both hard luck and good luck as possible paths of debauchery. Each decision brings the thrill of success or the disappointment of defeat –but with each decision, there is a portrait of the ordinary man who possess so much potential for his labors yet remains at the hand of fate. Or maybe it’s just a simple game intended only for the lucky. But then, I was never lucky or charming or anything but ordinary. I never dove off a bridge on a bungee cord or jumped out of a perfectly good airplane, for what, the thrill of it? Some guys have to have the adrenaline rush, flirt with death and all that shit. Maybe it’s their way of escape, you know, the possibility of committing suicide . . . almost. Dead is dead and that is that.
Yes. Most men move into the future with no gratification of the past; only a trail of disappointments. Time passes; dreams are crushed, things are left undone with little foresight and much after sight, and where is the prize, and what was is anyway? Where is the promise of grandeur, the crown on the head of the King? Nay, it is no more, for man has forgotten his place in life. He has given into medusa’s stare and his heart has turned to stone.
Young men tend to glorify themselves in their own self-induced world and I was no different, I thought I had the world by the tail and it had to give in. I had no idea the world had me by the tail and I was the catch. Like grabbing a tiger by the tail, if you let go it will eat you up. Hell, you can’t run fast enough to get away, so you just hunker down and get eaten alive.
Young men who stroll the Phantom-thread
Through life they wander where there’re lead.
It’s not the end that’s filled with gloom
But the onward journey toward the tomb.
Truly, time awaits no man as it lumbers forward as obscure as a phantom passes the windows of opportunity. All to soon, he realizes the Phantom -thread is warning him that his youth also, must be left behind. Even in his youthfulness time passed undetected until he transcends into manhood. All at once he is a youth no more but only a shell of his former self and inheritor of his forefathers accomplishments. Soon, all to soon, he is hollow and bent, with only memories, which are vague and baffling to the mind. He sniffs the air for the blossom he dreamt of, and cries tears of despair; in the end, no one cares. As he nears the end he feels himself disappearing into oblivion, yet he tries hanging onto a bit of what was, but he has forgotten who he was and in his sleep starved, mentally stupefied state . . . what his dream where.
There are cues in each man’s life where moments of truth burst through the
surface like a giant whale spraying water in all directions, yet even these moments of grander which contain the possibilities of greatness . . . all is gone asunder. What moments? You ask. Why the many times when doubt, boredom, weariness and dissatisfaction creep in to grieve the soul. Each beckon the scorpion of the black pit that reaches out its’ greedy claw for unsuspecting sorts who have given in to surrender. Weakness is in the knee and defeat in the heart of the lost that travel the Phantom -thread of life for each junction in the yellow-brick-road brings fear of the unknown and the possibility of oblivion. No matter, a youth never thinks of the end, and so, he never gets caught up in such unnerving thought for longevity is a mans birthright.
There are times when the reasoning between that of youth and real manhood where one is inclined to commit rash judgments, such as marriage, you know, when the loins overpower the brain. Like buying a new car while driving a perfectly good one or buying a super sound system, mostly to impress, yes, a girl. Then there is the foolishness of giving up a perfectly good job . . . for no apparent reason. Get it right boy, you may as well jump from a perfectly good plane, if it’s only for the thrill.
Well, young man, marriage may be good for some, for a good spouse is a helpmate indeed. But deception is the rule of the day and a helpmate, who delves into self, does not help and may become the anchor around one’s neck, drawing him into the darkness of the pit. I’ve seen the boys who cut and ran like a bear was hot on their tail, and I’ve see those who shrunk down and melted like ice cream in the hands of a young boy, once melted it’s only cream, like reshaped clay, they never regain their old shape.
It is said, the union of marriage provides a man a since of tranquility and responsibility, but all to soon little buggers are running about his feet and again . . . he is lost. Lost in a whirlpool of obligations, commitments and despair. He is up to his elbows in flowerbeds and working to put food on the table. His mind has become clouded and is only a remote sketch of its’ former self. The more lost he becomes, the more despair grips his soul and the more apt he is to make mistakes. It is the mistakes in life that leaves a man up the creek without a paddle. Like building a house with no roof, he ends up soaked every time it rains.
I am a living example for I gave up the ship for a burning in my loins called lust, and worse than that, in my stupefied, blinded state, I steamed headlong into disaster. My eyes were blinded to the “haves” for “could haves” turned to “would haves”. Indeed the wife’s demands were “must haves”. I wonder, what happened to “will have?’ It seems “to have” gave way to “never have.” And the Phantom-thread pressed onward into old and feebleness.
I take the blame.
It was entirely my fault as I elected to abandon the yellow brick road and check my youth for the folly and bad temper of a wife. Did a green-eyed beauty blind me, or was it the alluring seduction? I don’t know, at the time I was blinded to my own dim-wittedness and the response of little Weenie, I suppose. She tempted and taunted as is her nature, but It’s no use trying to cover over what even I, at the time, suspected to be a dumb choice. We shared in a common element of stupidity as it crept in; I like an old cur sniffing the butt of a bitch in heat and she the seductive temptress just as befuddled as I. It’s true , I choose to make my bed and now I whine like an old flea bitten dog, when I have to sleep in it. Even though I am without excuse I moan in despair but it does not relieve the pain of possibilities lost.
Ah Yes, I confess, I sacrificed the freedom and standing as a young man, for the hand of a mesmerizing, green-eyed beauty. Like a bird flies from the comforts of a nest, I eagerly plunged forward seeking an inexperienced, ambiguous mate and was seduced into the shadows. The wonders of the world passed by unscathed as I plunged on in my vacillating performance; resting upon my laurels, truly convinced tomorrow would bring “the dream” and key to happiness would somehow fall in my lap. You know, that dream; the one that floats down from Heaven, all tied up in a pink ribbon and makes everything all right. I now realize, it was only a dream, a figment of my own aspirations, a black and bottomless chasm that could not be crossed. I had burned the bridge, the escape route was nevermore and I had become a product of my own undoing. It’s only a dream to think you may wake up one morning and the world had miraculously fallen into your order. There is no rose-colored world only rose-colored glasses, not even in that cracker box house in the suburbs, with its’ little lawn and rusting barbeque pit.
If it was failure that was my destiny, then I indeed perused it with a vengeance. I sought after the ship of fools, the rocks of self-destruction that reeks of past dead dreams while choosing every conceivable mistake in judgment possible. My life has been a hodge-podge of mistakes, some even overlapping into the others. My course, it seems, is littered with the bones of yesterday’s misdeeds, the many dead ideals, brought to the table and deposited unto the trash heap of empty dreams. Like a battlefield filled with pockmarks and carcasses of casualties, I also buried dead dreams in hopes for the prize at the end.
Perhaps I do struggle on for a much sought after prize, for my upbringing did not tempt me to lust after riches, yet in the back of my mind I knew that it is the possibilities of riches that is the prize which engages a man’s desires. Success is a wanting whore who taunts a man with the measure of his accomplishments, yet she is ever alluding like a spirit in the mist. Then, where is the motivation, the aspiration to excel? Not from a crippled spirit who has forgotten the great prize. Hope is crushed like a quail egg and cast to the sea, and for me the prize shall never be.
Then, one day I felt a tremble, it was like my inner self knew something was wrong, like a whisper or ghost of yesteryear, came creeping into my soul. One day I was happy in my maturity, my marriage, my fatherhood, and everything was perfectly all right and with the flip of a switch it was all wrong. I mean, it was really wrong. Everything collapsed, the glamour, flavor, possibilities, ambition, energy, interest, contentment – everything. There was no more justification, or reasoning or willingness. It was one of those twinklings, you know, when the inexperienced infection of youth comes down and carries you off to a land of confusion and dread. Had I been only a simple boy who abandoned his youth for promises? Was it the promises of grandeur that seduced me into viewing the world in all its’ wondrous possibilities? Had I taken a ride into the dark forest of the White Knight? And where was the princess awaiting my heroic deed? Only bleached bones, bones of what might have been and could have been. One musters his soul then gives it to folly, without gain, without freedom and without self dignity. What then when you find yourself stripped of all integrity, esteem and pride. Are we doomed to grovel in the dirt, like a wormy, old molting dog? Is all dignity vanquished for the sake of the prize?
And what of the White Knight? After a while, he also grows dim and tarnished and is no longer the White Knight, but only a stained, gray shadow of his former self. And the Phantom-line goes on, and on, and on.
The question of what ailed me took me away from the reality of life as I cast my fate upon even more treacherous waters. I don’t profess to be a world traveler. I get lost going to town, yet there I went throwing my cares upon stormy waters and moved wife and three little buggers to New England. No plan, direction, road signs, or map just as before, I blindly charged onward. In the process I ran over the cliff in the darkness and never hit bottom, just endless falling. Yet in my blind stupor, I surmised if given time, I could bend the rules ever so slightly and I would come out for the better. Yah right, yet another dumb observation, it catches up with you in the end. And here I was, not satisfied with self destruction but I took them all down the path, with all its encumbrances and vagueness. It’s no wonder the kids are all neurotic as they have now passed into maturity.
No place for me
There are red worms in the earth, fishes in the sea,
There are birds flying overhead but there is no place for me.
The lily of the field has a lot of appeal and the streams course toward the sea.
But in the scheme of it all, whatever befalls, there is still no place for me.
I am doomed to wander in a world of despair,
And as lost as I seem to be,
I have cast my fate upon the fair,
But there is still no place for me.
The stars in heaven shine so bright
And rains fall upon fields of light,
I sought the course within my vain,
Without thought of a warning brain,
And there I strode once again
Without soul and trimmered limb.
I chose to be where I am,
Not knowing where the road would end
I took my life’s turns and bends,
And now I cast my fate to the edge,
To the very edge of the cliff I trudge.
Then I’ll leap into space you see,
Because I’ve found no place for me.
Perhaps it was the zest for life that taunted me into submission? Maybe, it was simply the haze that covered my eyes and clouded my brain. I should have done what I could have and now I would have the satisfaction of saying, “a job well done old man.” Not all was lost in vain. Not all was squandered in misjudgments and misdeeds. But what have I to show for a lifetime, a gift from God, a time of possibilities and a time well spent.
I sired three offspring, then that’s another story altogether. In my state of disillusionment I thought bringing life into the world was an act of majesty. Only the qualified spur life as God grants the privilege. But, alas, it is only a common act bestowed upon the masses. Sending one’s genes into the future does not make a man manly nor does it make a man remembered. Those whom I commit my offspring to, will no doubt not show gratitude for my deed for it was only an act of a common man. Have I become less than that which I strived to be, and now, even at my advanced age I still do not know which road to take? It seems I am as lost as ever, but it makes no difference, I did choose the road easiest and most traveled after all, winding up in obscurity heaped upon the mountains of others wreaks. Was it all in vain? Was I committed from the beginning? Is destiny the truth of a man’s fate? I think not, for there are those who succeed in life, no matter the odds. What is the difference, other than being born with a silver spoon in one’s mouth? Is one’s destination happiness, wealth and peace, while another’s turbulence, disappointment and hostility? Who knows, the future is littered with wrong accounts and rightful penalties. The thing is, I suppose, no one is exempt. We all are capable of plunging headlong into our own messes.
A man moves along a time line, the “Phantom-thread” if you will, of life. There are no promises, no gifts, nor any presents awaiting him in the end. Only speculation and disappointment looms in the path of the weary traveler. The brass ring? Well it’s simply an illusion a myth handed down from generation to generation. There are no prizes awaiting the ring grabber, nor discoveries of self, or recognitions. The Phantom-thread is a road well traveled and pocked with potholes. One jumbles along swerving heather and yawn, to miss the most obvious of the obstructions, and finds himself/herself, running into the ditch and trees along the way. There are no warnings or signs of direction to provide one with a simple hint of consideration. There are no hints as when to slow down and seek council. The struggle of man is born out of confusion and plunges from confusion into in a state of finely tuned bewilderment.
Man is born of humankind this his destiny
To better dwell in discontent wherever he may be
To pile upon the ashes of races in decease
From cradle to coffin he finds no release
There are no bigger hills to climb or fantasies to chase
Only wants of discontent for the human race.
Bonding with the boys
As a boy I bonded with the other boys of our little town. We shared in our growing experience as we plowed headlong into our future. Even though it was a pleasant time, it was also a time of wonderment. I can’t recall who had the first experience with girls, such a thing, you would think, would stick in one’s mind as a milestone. But alas, we all lied about the magnitude of our female encounters, and knew each other’s shortcomings. No matter we were all in the same boat sailing toward a great whirlpool. It would have been to our betterment if we had concentrated on better things and not gotten distracted. The Phantom-thread is like walking a tight rope, keep your balance and make the other side or get distracted and fall into the pit.
Once a boy tastes the sweet flavor of a girl, he can’t go back to boyish things. As one thing leads to another soon she has given him favor to which his brain becomes scrambled like a plate of eggs. Such a distraction becomes the downfall of boyish pride and all it stands for. After all, what is the use of being a boy if one can’t be boyish? No matter, I was caught in the trap and couldn’t bring myself to chew my hand off to get out.
The girls split us boys up and we went our marry ways, traw, laa, laa, and a hoop- tee-do. Life has never been so fun since. Later we sired families and all the experiences that comes with them. Well all except for one, and he, well he, waited, fear or good judgment, or procrastination or well, shoot, maybe no girl would have him. So, now, at his advanced age, he has a girl friend, and occasionally is the envy of us all. You know, we think of him when we are sweating our life’s blood for a wife who doesn’t give a rats’ ass. Maybe if there is as element of freedom in all this, it is the prognosis in his example of what we could have been or at least might have been.
So, there I was and am now, wife, children, grandchildren and all the calamities that come with them. I wait for the day when someone says, you did all you could, and I thank you for it. Yah, NEVER HAPPEN!! No one cares what my effort was. What I put up with or the sleepless nights, or double shifting, or giving in, or well, you get the picture. Does it sound like I’m whining like a floppy eared dog on a summers afternoon? Hay, I have dogs and I should have so good but alas not is all lost. I stuck in there, like a good little trooper. And now, I take a little time to reminisce of times gone by when I had a purpose, as it were. My pup looks up at me, sad and dejected, and accepts me for what I am no what I could have been.
I’m the bad guy
It’s strange I always end up being the bad guy. But, someone has to play the part, I suppose. It’s not until I am reeling under the weight and am egged into a state of escape do I fall for the position of “head chopper”. I always thought I was a easy going guy, you know, the one that is ready with a joke or just kick back. I would rather take a nap or go fishing than be someone’s scapegoat. Oh, yah, I gave that up also, fishing, racing, hunting all gone, all part of boyhood all foolishness in the wife’s eye, and you know what, she doesn’t even get it. She never saw the sacrifices or attention or even that I cared as much as I did.
At one point I even thought I would better myself, (another fit of disillusionment). Better myself for what, pride, esteem, self-indulgence or maybe even solace? Shoot, like I deserve any of those things. Like a steer follows another to the slaughter, smelling death in the air and balling all the way, I made life-changing choices and followed my fate, as I went willingly toward the Sarcophagus. But not all was lost; I traveled, met a lot of people, learned about life, took part in a family and best of all, found Jesus Christ. By most standards I have been a failure that is if failure were a measure of one’s earthly possessions.
Given foresight, while I displayed little I had plenty I probably would have done the same. Like most guys my problem was, I rested on my backside as I goggled at my mate. I am amazed even though she disengage sex; I still get excited when she enters the room. With all the ragging and fussing, we still say, “I love you” to each other, at least four times a day. I still wait, like an anxious little pup for her return when she is off at work, or at the store. I have anxiety attacks, I guess. She knows it too, she calls from the store parking lot, on her cell phone, to say she will be back soon, or from work to see how I am doing, and I appreciate that. Maybe, in some ways, the lack of sexual attention I get is compensated by her concern for me.
No matter, what has transpired has only been a learning experience, nothing more. But, hay, it could have been worse. Like a needle in the eye or shaft up the butt, now that would give a person reason to whine. Life has been good; I don’t really have anything to snivel about. The Lord watched over us and kept us from any really misgivings. We always had a roof over our heads, food on the table and shoes to wear. Every time things got a little tight, something would happen to make it better. Hay, the Lord is always there, even when we are doing stupid things. He made us and knows how stupid we can be, after all, isn’t stupid a trait of its’ designer? Ha, Ha, Ha. Gotya!
In the past few years I have met some fine people, I still have my boyhood buddies, and all my offspring are healthy and have finely stopped producing them little buggers called . . . grandkids. Only problem is, those grandkids are producing great grandkids and the phantom-thread just keeps going on.
Yah, and hallelujah! My wife, well she is still putting up with my antics, even though she gets a little cranky now and then. In looking at the rest of the world, I give thanks to God that I was born here, in the United States. We are not perfect but, from what I can see, we sure are the best on earth. If we weren’t, why would so many risk their lives to come here? Enough!!
All this whining and crying is no more than debauchery in a demented mind. Life is what you make of it, not what you expect of it. How can one expect that which hasn’t arrived? You have to be in gear, with the motor running before you can expect anything to happen. And even then, you have to have a tank of gas, and step on the accelerator, see; it’s all a Phantom-line of events. We never see it beforehand, or right in front of us, always after the fact. What do they say about hindsight being 20/20vision? We can see clearly, where we have been, but never what we are going to be, crap, what’s that all about? Keep us guessing Lord, dangle the carrot, make the promise, but keep us guessing! Testing is good for the temperament, right? Yah, who needs the aggravation? I’ll have a word or two to say to Him when I get there, and I am sure He will listen, RIGHT LORD?
Even though indulgence is the rule of the day, it’s all guesswork anyway. So do the best you can and don’t rely on your sanity but rely on a good helpmate and the Lord to bail you out now and then and well, enjoy it while you can.
© 2006 By Don Yates
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