Living on the Edge
surviving in a world turned upside down
Saturday, April 28, 2007
Saturday, April 21, 2007
Sometimes We Ride On Your Horses, Sometimes We Walk Alone
There were only 4 hikers who would go the full way with us and Jeremy, one great Kiwi guide.
Friday, April 13, 2007
No One Could Steer Me Right But Mama Tried
When I was in elementary school, The class bully, Roger Garino, took my ball on the playground.
This ape lived in a piece of crap dump behind us. We must have got the land cheap to build our new home because it bordered up to their slum.
The Garinos had the concept of "landscaping" down to where it meant, "Lay the used washing machines on their sides for the artistic touch". They were trailer trash before the term became popular.
Additionally, somehow, I was in the Cub Scouts at that time.
How did that happen? I cannot tell a lie, I have no recollection.
Anyway, Mrs. Garino was the den mother of our pack. I cannot believe the CSA could have allowed such a thing to happen. We used to have to go to her house for meetings.
I never ate the rice crispy squares she offered for snacks that's for sure. Thus, I failed to earn the coveted merit badge for "Diarrhea"
So Roger, my neighbor and scout mate takes my ball. When I tried to get it back, he beat the crap out of me. I was an easy target, a chubby pacifist Jew.
That night, my mother got some boxing gloves, I can still see them in the eye of my memory. ...where did she get them??? She was going to teach me the fine art of self defense...like as if she knew.
I remember her on her knees trying to teach me boxing in the basement. This must have been hilarious to witness. Later, she built a tiny boxing ring and arranged matches between me and my sister. Mickey had an uppercut that I never saw coming. I retired with a poor record. As it turned out, I did not go on to win belts in the arena of fisticuffs. Instead, I learned from my father the Hebrew discipline of JEWDO - the skill of smiling while you talk your way out of difficult situations.
Then there was the time when Mrs. Wright, an evil art teacher criticized my drawing of a tree. I swear it was a fine tree, but she wanted them done her way. I was doing it my way.
Apparently, art class is no place for creativity. She held my work up for all to see and exclaimed that my trees were an example of wrongness and failure. I was made to come in at lunch and draw a tree until I got it the Wright way.
She made me feel so bad, I feigned illness and refused to go to school for days. Mom finally figured out my ruse and marched me to the school and had a face to face with that Mrs Wright who backed down, apologized and never bothered me again. She must have realized Mom was a boxer and would have kicked her bony ass until it dripped blue fingerpaint.
I could draw whatever I wanted after that, because Mrs. Wright completely avoided my area of the room. So much for my budding career as a painter.
During a little skirmish I like to call the the Vietnam War, I went about using my creativity attempting to avoid service. This was not due to of any lack of patriotism. Instead, it was all about survival. After all, I was a creative, pacifistic, cowardly young man and the 'Nam was no place for me.
I would have been like a budding rose in Roger Garino's backyard.
Quite likely, my JEWDO would be useless in Asian countries.
When it looked like I was about to be called to a draft physical and certain death, my mom found an anti-war dentist, Dr. Bernie Fischer.
We sarcastically called him "Painless" because he was very heavy handed. He would not deem the day to be successful unless he had jammed his arm, up to the elbow, deep into the mouth of a young patient.
Dr. Fischer took one look at me, with my perfectly straight teeth obtained by a reputable orthodontist. He declared that I needed to have more braces immediately. Apparently he knew, a metal mouth smile would get me a draft deferment.
So on they went...again.
The good news for me was that when I went to the physical, I got a special braces deferment. The military doctor, whose name was Dr.Cantwell...true..., was the first man I ever saw do what is called GLOWER.
So why would this dear protective woman curse me with a genetic malady? Why??
Yes, she gave me and some of my brothers and sisters high cholesterol. Very high. Higher than Jesus on stilts. And lately, high cholesterol is the Don Imus of blood disorders. Our fatty-dreaded foes, if you will.
In America, I nurtured a long term addiction to Lipitor It certainly kept the numbers down, but Kimberly felt that it would have side effects.
So when we came here, all pharmaceuticals were stopped. The numbers went back up to where I have a risk, rather low, of heart attack.
I might just be Jewdoing myself
Saturday, April 07, 2007
Undie-niably the Best
However, at age 51 and straight, I can appreciate Justin's taste in fine young men. I'm not a pervert, but I AM menopausal. Yeah, that's it, I'm menopausal, that's the ticket.
As a lovely lady still turns Mike's head, (more like a gawk), I feel it's healthy, (yeah that's the ticket, it's healthy), so does the occasional Rugby player get my attention.
Thursday, April 05, 2007
Sometimes We Visit Your Country and Stay in Your Home
A few months back, an old deadhead buddy, Mike Colette and his brother, Jim pulled up New Zealand's largest campervan. There were just 2 guys, but there was room in the thing for dancing. I guess they did not want to seem like "partners" so they rented a 2 bedroom.
Either way, it was very impressive to see them get it up the hill to the house.
They drove like fools all over the South Island, ate alligator meat and kangaroo testicles at the Wild Foods Festival, saw glaciers and Milford Sound, and lots more. Mike took excellent photos...and all while barefoot!
Last week, old friends from Tucson, The Ganslines, showed up for a week. In addition to being the world's greatest squash player, Bill is an archetect, as you can see from his "look". Nancy is, and always has been, simply georgeous. They have 2 great kids, Max, a Colorado University Buff, and Sam, still in High School.
These are lucky kids, who get to travel the world with their folks and never need to go into the pocket unless they are mining for lint.
But there is something very wrong with Bill. He must have been born with 4 times the normal amount of adrelinin. The man cannot sit still. He's a friggin' Tasmanian Devil. If Bill stops moving, like a shark, he will die. I bet he sleeps with his eyes open.
His kids have inherited a bit of that, but they are youth with all those puberty chemicals. And I saw them dozing a few times.
Nancy is normal and I think she is going with the flow, but would be quite happy with a glass of wine and a cozy lounge chair at sunset.
In one week, those guys crewed on a racing yacht, did 2 hot yoga classes, kayaked, went 4-wheeling, bungee jumped, jogged and hiked.
Every chance he got, Bill stood on his head.