Sometimes I Really Feel Like…

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…. I’m taking away somehow from things my son really likes to do by asking him to participate in different projects I get involved with. I enjoy sharing knowledge and working with my son. We often learn unexpected things when we journey into fixing things that are broken or building from scratch or refurbishing something special. I didn’t grow up with an Xbox, a computer, a cell phone, the internet, or cable. I think, selfishly, that kids, not just my own, should experience different things. Not just to learn new skills and gain new experiences, but maybe see if there’s other things they enjoy. To be honest, the best feeling for me to experience is seeing the excitement in his face when he does something on his own or when he played a large part in a project. Anyway, I saw this picture and it made me think how true the statement really is and I wanted to share.

Penetration Before Detonation

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Going along the line of my last post about boxes full of my Air Force and AMMO shit that my wife got ahold of, I decided that my last post merely scratched the surface of a few topics that I finally decided to discuss. If you didn’t read We Live So Others May Die then this may seem pretty random and might not make total sense, but then again that can be said for most of the shit I write anyway. I had left out my jacket from the last story, I think I got sidetracked or something. But, the jacket pictured is a big part in ways of expressing and explaining how I’ve changed over the last 15 years since getting out of the Air Force. How so? In many ways one might say I matured, maybe grew up is better, since I was 32 at the time of exiting. The things that were my life and priorities were very different only a week later, no more eating all things dangerous for breakfast and shitting tiffany bullets by dinner, providing the enemy the opportunity to die for his country was no longer printed on my business cards. Overnight my life as I knew it was upside down, it was a disaster and a hard first few weeks, and slowly the stress of that job faded.

But let’s go back first, way back. My dad was a retired Air Force Chief Master Sergeant before I was born in 68. It wasn’t until my teen years that he began to open up to me about his military career. The thing that used to intrigue me the most about his career was him telling me, in a joking manner, that Uncle Sam used to pay him to blow shit up, and I thought that he had to have had the best job known to man. My mind was made up, I was joining the Air Force and do what he did. However, by the time it was time certain jobs had been retired and new ones created. Let history show that I chose to be a 461. Now, we all have heard that Air Force basic training is relatively easy, right? Right. I won’t lie, it was easy. I think it’s easy because they’re not really training “soldiers” or “badasses” by definition, they’re teaching military service as a way of life, like summer camp but with better weapons, because they know one is in the air force to do things on the more technical side. Blah, blah, blah, it was a breeze. Technical school for the 461 was a crash course in how not to end up dead, full of many technical terms, safety, and how one must absolutely positively respect explosives or they simply put your dog tags in an envelope to mail to your next of kin because typically that’s all one can expect to be remaining. All that being said, it stuck with me always, respect. And sure enough I got out with all ten fingers and toes and everything in the middle. I paid the price tho, I drank the kool-aid, I started believing the propaganda as the everloving truth, I would preach it all like the gospel itself. Later in my career I had my wake up call, and at that point I was no longer able to be detached from the horrors of what I helped create.

I wore this jacket everywhere, I wore it with absolute pride knowing if I did my job properly then without prejudice those weapons would function as designed. I mean think about it, without explosives the Air Force is just the world’s largest airline which was even more lore and propaganda, I had a head full of it, it was pounded in until my sweat glands weeped it all back out, it was like the victory lap after being full circle for hundreds of miles yet never going anywhere. It’s a beautiful plan. And just to think that the general population of the United States of America is opposed to the waterboarding of our enemies but it’s OK to brainwash our sons and daughters in the military because we must make stronger soldiers. Bullshit. They break you down and then build the you they think you should be, fuck the real you, the real you is DOA once you sign the dotted line. My whole career was just a dangerous game, I got to dance with the devil and sleep with his daughters all in the name of democracy and the American way. I know this sounds bitter and sarcastic, I’m not trying to, because I actually really loved being in the Air Force. As my jacket reads, I even advertised our services for free every moment I wasn’t in uniform.

Back to present day, this jacket was neatly folded laying on top of everything else in the box, resting for eternity, or so I thought, until I see it has been resurrected. But the emotion I had was not anger for digging up my skeletons, it was a smile and surprise. As soon as I said I would not be wearing it, simply because I had a growth spurt in my mid 30s, my son volunteers to be its proud new owner. Way wrong fucking answer boy, it will never happen. First of all, it is not appropriate to wear to school, I don’t care if he is in the AFJROTC in high school, I really don’t. Sure, it would be cool for him to show off, but all the perverts would find some way of making it a sexual statement. Just say it to yourself and imagine all the meanings. Of course, very few know it is the calling card and slogan for my favorite weapon of all, the BLU-109. Yes, I had a fantastic favorite, seems weird now, stop making it weird people. Plus, its not his “game” to play with people. I can back my shit up, he cannot. Yes, I can remember wanting to wear my father’s uniforms and so forth so I do get the psychology. But the responsible dad part of me just says no to it altogether.

Damn, of course, this story, this little piece of personal history, has gone in so many directions. Oh well, maybe some of y’all get it, and I cannot help the rest of y’all. This reminds me of so much more, I hope this doesn’t constitute violating the terms I signed when I got out, you know the form, don’t ever talk about your job from this day forward or go to federal prison. I knew I would crack one day, I just never knew when. So, until next time boys and girls, remember to eat it every day!

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Worst Conversation With My Wife Ever

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Over the years I have made it a point to keep my relationship with my wife and our marriage off of my blog and definitely off of Facebook for sure. Granted, looking back through the years and lifespan of my blogs I see that I’ve scratched the surface enough for readers to know that I am indeed married to a wonderful, caring wife. I don’t just say that here because she reads my blog, it is said and conveyed daily in our private lives, just so y’all know I’m not looking for brownie points from her. My wife and I have a “bad” habit, we talk with each other all the time about things that actually matter, we go beyond talking about work (which is actually forbidden by both of us), the children, or the bills that pile up. Yes, we do talk about those important things but they are not allconsuming to the point where that is all we talk about. We are different in how we talk, I like to talk in a long winded manner, telling stories, and bringing the details to light. Yes, we have talked about that as well, seems to get worse as I age. My wife on the other hand is more emotional about things, eventhough she tries to be short and sweet, she suffers from a similar affliction of not being able to get to the point. She considers it a fault of hers, but I admire that she trusts me with her emotions. The other day we had one of those “out of the blue” conversations that she likes to start on occasion. Out of the blue for me but well thought about on her part. Just know this, I will be 47 next month and she just turned 40 this past June, so I personally understand we are not the same age we were when we got married 17 years ago. We’ve put on a few miles, a few pounds, a few wrinkles, and much gray hair for me personally, we don’t talk about her one or two she has pop up, we just color it and move on.

So, she asks me if I think she is turning into her mother as she gets older. I will explain my answers here as I explained them to her. A husband who pays attention to his wife sees changes over time, sees the different moods and generally knows what causes them and what cures them, he listens not only to what she is saying but what isn’t being said as well. I like to think I have a good handle on “reading” my wife and she has a great flare for doing the same to me. We have learned that there is a time and place for everything. I don’t know about other marriages but I consider ours healthy in many ways, the main one being we still love one another, it not tolerating each other, it’s wanting to be with each other, needing and depending on one another to get through each day and night. The answer to the question is no I don’t think she is turning into her mother. But, and this but raised an eyebrow with my wife, as we get older, as our children get older, I see her professional life taking over the mother and wife life. Meaning, she puts in long exhausting days at the office being a manager and being in charge of people, money, and property all with the goal of turning a profit. Most people don’t think of a doctor’s office as a business and the goal of every business is to make money. She has been an office manager there for 14 years, she knows her shit frontwards and backwards. On top of that, she does it all with just her high school GED. (Life happened, that’s all I want to say). But when she gets home she doesn’t need to be in charge, everything at home usually runs like a well oiled machine, thanks in no small way to my own personal efforts. You see, I work my 40 hour work week in three days over the weekend, so I am home all week long mostly.

Yes, I have seen her go from her early 20s to now 40, yes the body I knew for her then has changed, yes her mind has matured as well, and yes I do see the start of the crows feet wrinkles and the occasional gray hair or three. Big deal, we’ve gotten older, it was expected, I knew it would happen, her problem, in my opinion as told to her, is she has yet to accept the fact that she has now turned 40. Women, in general, in my opinion, treat 40 like a death sentence or something that is so feared that when it happens that they magically are going to change and not be wanted any longer. I have never, nor will I ever, tell my wife I want to trade her in for two 20 year olds. I like where we are in life together. Does my wife wear a moo-moo? No she does not. She does wear sweats and my old t-shirts around the house. When not at work she has her hair up in a pony tail and isn’t wearing make-up, which is what I like. I don’t like all the make-up and bullshit, but she does, so I shut up. But what she really wants to know is if I think that she is mentally, or the way she speaks, or how she acts, or how she thinks, or is anything she does show signs of her turning into her mother. This ultimately could be the question of death for me. I might need to sleep with one eye open, she does spend a good deal of time watching the I.D. channel. My fate has now come crystal clear to me, it has all been a dream, now I get to die a horrific death that nobody will ever be able to blame on her. But does it have to be so bad? I think not, and here’s why.

I explained to my wife that she need not worry about her own personal growth, evolution, and development because she should be happy that she remains her own person. It’s true, she’s changed, I’ve changed, we all change for better or worse for whatever the reason may be. I tease her a bit though, and tell her I like her mother, she has some great traits and qualities which I really admire. At the same time, I enjoy who my wife is, how she acts, how she speaks, how she thinks, how she moves, how she dresses, and especially how she makes me feel every single day, which is loved. I unfortunately do not think my answers are well taken or understood simply because I can only give likenesses and observations, because in my opinion, the only person who truly knows the truth is her and how she feels. Yes, I am her partner, but no I don’t read minds, a person can only learn by what he is shown or told when it comes to a relationship such as marriage. Is she the same woman I met all those years ago? Yes and no. But here’s the catch, I like who she is and how she represents herself, she is her own person, I feel lucky to be allowed to be with her through the best of times and the worst of times.

To sum this all up, we all change as we age, we all make a choice to either accept those changes in our partner or to not, and sadly that is why we see marriages fail, failing because people don’t think long term, they don’t consider that maturity makes us different, and we don’t prepare mentally for those kinds of challenges. Why? Only reason I can think of is it is because we are selfish. But I’m no marriage counselor, I’m no expert in the field of relationships, I just a married man who still enjoys the company of his wife. I offer only one piece of advice, find what works for y’all and nurture that entire process and live life like there is no tomorrow, because, you know, shit happens when we least expect it to happen. I look at my late grandparents, married 83 years at the time of his death and she died of a broken heart 2 months later. That’s love, that’s needing the other person to be in your life, that’s being heart-broken when a part of you is missing.

Okay, I’m done with my story, my peak into my private life, and I hope y’all understand that our marriage is not one of tolerance but one of acceptance. We are who we are, it is what it is, and we all just need to relax and be who we are comfortable being. Or be like me, an asshole tainted by my dislikes for people in the general population of our planet. Yes, I have a low tolerance for most people, but at the same time I have compassion towards those I care about, more often than not there is no middle ground, and I don’t play well with others. With that being said, I end this post, but fear not, there will be more, much much more.

A Tale Of Twists And Some Glitter

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I was very surprised to get a phone call from a long time friend who was calling to invite me over to his house to see his new truck. Having nothing to do in my own life I decided to go check it out for shits and giggles. I pulled into his driveway and only saw the cars that are normally parked in his driveway. I guess he saw me pull up because he hurriedly came our the front door and I was told to just shut up and follow him to his shop. I was just as disappointed at the shop because I still wasn’t looking at a new truck! He had this look on his face, the look I imagine a person would have on their face if they just killed someone and needed help burying the body, which is odd because he can’t even kill a tiny spider, but he had that deranged look nevertheless. He begins to tell me this story that, when he was done I asked if I could tell to a few of my friends, is pretty strange even by my standards. Before I retell his story let me give you a little background on my friend, we’ll call him Rick, and his son who we’ll call Jr. I have known Rick, his ex-wife, and his son since I met them all in the early 90s when I lived in Japan. His son is the same age of my oldest daughter, 25. Ever since 1999 Rick has lived the life of a single father, working and raising his son were his two top priorities in life. He never dated until his son was 19 and in the Air Force out seeing the world. I had introduced him to a few single moms over the years but he seemed to like the ones that were his son’s age instead, they partied better is what he’d say. After six years his son returned home, where he still lives today so he can help his dad out the best he can. So, anyway, let’s start with his story because it gets fucking weird fast.

About six months ago Rick met a woman in her early 20s who works at a strip club I used to bartend at, life was great, the sex was great, and they were even talking wedding bells. They were the perfect couple he thought. This last weekend his son had a big date, he was going to be proposing to his girlfriend after she got off work, but he decided to go early to surprise her. Rick, bored, decided to head to the strip club and drop in on his future wife, have a few drinks, and catch the end of the game he was missing. When he walked in he noticed his son talking with Amanda (Rick’s future bride). She didn’t notice Rick as she headed up on stage behind the bright lights. Rick sat down next to his son and asked why he wasn’t out on his important date. Rick also explained that the young lady he was talking to was who he’d been dating and that he came down to surprise her. Rick laughed a bit, telling his son they have similar tastes in woman. But Jr wasn’t laughing, Jr looked horrified, and Jr was looking a little pissed off.

The short version of the conversation had was the both figured out they were dating and having sex with the same woman, with both having plans of marriage with her, and now the truth was out, kinda. Needing a drink, father and son settled at the bar where another stripper began talking to them, not about herself or the special of the day, but Amanda. She said they were both wasting there time as they both were led to look to the door, where they saw Amanda’s real husband, a huge man, 6’11, 320# easy, and one solid muscle from head to toe. Both father and son were compelled to question Amanda and when they did everything was confirmed. She invited them to tell her husband that they had been fucking her right under his nose but said it may not end well for either of them. They just left, in separate vehicles, meeting up once again at home. Neither one has said another word about Amanda in a few days, Rick thinks it will always be that way.

Luckily for Rick, I know the muscle bound mass and Amanda, who are married, and that he really didn’t want to pick a fight with someone now on parole who almost killed a man because he got a $100 lap dance from his wife but only was going to pay her a single dollar. So telling him that he and his son have been banging his wife probably wouldn’t go over very well. I wish people would talk to me before dating the strippers that work at the same club I worked at, because there are nice strippers and then there is Amanda. Anyway, Rick can’t get over the fact that he used to kiss the same mouth that would have his son’s dick in it. The least of his worries I assured him, just wonder what your son is thinking. Well, after the talk we went out back, lit a big fire, and the four of us (my wife joined us) got shitfaced in the drizzling rain to pass the night away. When it was time to go, we watched father and son hug it out, I think they’re going to be okay. They may need some therapy, but I think they will be just fine in the end.

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Expect The Unexpected

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I briefly mentioned a question my 17 y/o daughter asked me while out for an evening walk in my last post’ “Shake Your Tail Feathers” and I promised to write about it since I didn’t want to sidetrack that post. Well, here we are. I really don’t know what she will think about me writing what I will be writing since she will not be previewing it, she will read it for the first time after it is published as will everyone else who makes the choice to read it. I ask that y’all hold your judgements, if any, because as a household certain decisions have been made for very specific reasons. My daughter, who will be 18 in less six weeks, has been dating this same guy now for about 2 years. I have held, in reserve, my opinions of the relationship after my initial thoughts were expressed. I have nothing against him personally, but he is 2 years older than my daughter and I always considered that a problem. But, as we can tell, life has pressed forward and we are faced with the present day and the challenges she offers for us. Over time the boyfriend has grown on me and impresses me that he has embraced his own life challenges and found the courage to pull himself up by his bootstraps and literally kick some ass to ensure his place in this world. In fact, let’s start there, let’s start with a brief history of the boy and you will see why I have grown to like him a little.

A few months before they began to date (they had been friends for who knows how long) his dad passed away. The death came fast as it was a fast moving cancer in his main organs that was never diagnosed. When it was caught he was admitted to the hospital and passed away a few weeks later. It is said he and his dad were pretty close, the only problems or mixed words they had were about his step mother who was unliked by the boyfriend from very early on. Within days of the funeral he was kicked out of the house he had grown up in and was lucky his aunt lived near by because he accepted the offer to move in with her. Since he had already graduated high school he at least didn’t have to worry about that as well. Skip forward a bit and soon the relationship between him and his aunt deteriated which is when he decided to move in with his older brother. His older brother helped with the part time job but also wanted him to help with the monthly rent and utilities. So what did he do? He got a second job and soon replaced the part time job with a full time job. He has been working these two jobs basically to keep a roof over his head and a little food in his belly. In a way, that’s where we come in, since he eats dinner here almost every night and spends his off time on the weekends in our spare room located right across from the master bedroom. Life isn’t great but he is surviving it for now. Then, three weeks ago his brother (and roommate), dropped a nice bomb on him. It was announced that he and his girlfriend were moving to Las Vegas, getting married, and staying there ton work and live. Now he has a predicament because he cannot afford rent non that apartment on his own. Enter my daughter and her solution.

So, while we were out walking she decided to ask me what I thought of him and his whole situation. I knew she was going somewhere with it but I just didn’t know where yet. Then she hits me with it, she wants permission to ask him to move into our house. A very bold request coming from someone who does not pay any of the bills. When she was done selling me her idea she looked at me as if I had an immediate answer to give her, which I did, but thought it be best to discuss it with her mother anyway. Needless to say she had already spoken to her mother and she was told it was up to me. It took her a week to get up the courage to talk to me according to her mother. She was hoping her mother would break the ice but she never did, never even dropped a hint, and never warned me either. We sat him down and hadna long talk about the arrangements which by judging the looks on his face was the first time he had heard about the solution. I wonder where my daughter gets her sneakiness.

We don’t know what his answer is as of yet because his pride is kinda getting in the way, he doesn’t want the handout. Like I explained to him, life happens, we have all been in a place which had no real way to succeed and some of us were lucky we had family or friends to lend a helping hand to us. Plus, as I explained to them all, he will not be living there for free nor will we become his maid. But, with that being said his life will become significantly less burdened since he will not have to throw away so much money on rent. I am looking long term, I know they will get married one day and if I can help make that a better transition then I will do it for both of them. At this point I really don’t know what tomorrow holds for him because nothing has been set in stone yet.

I complain allot about not being needed in the daddy role so much any more and that will probably never change. What can I say, I miss my babies. I miss the days when the dilemma was a scratched elbow or lost toy in the treeline. I know, we get older and our roles in our children’s life change. Seems that I am in a support role now. Its not a bad place to be I guess. I sure hope life’s problems get easier to solve. This will all work out I am sure, he will move into the spare bedroom of my chosing and we’ll just press forward. I used to be such a great hard ass, I wonder what happened to me.

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Shake Your Tail Feathers

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For the past few months I have been following the advice of the diabetic dietitian I formally was insured to see which is to walk at least one hour a day covering at least one mile in distance.. I don’t go to a gym, nor do I visit any circular monotonous track, because I have plenty of room to walk on my property. Hell, the walk from my front door to the main street where my mailbox is located is just shy of 1/4 mile, so I have plenty of places to walk. In preparation I did cut a pathway for myself through a section of my wooded area because it was going to be easier to go through it than around it. While on the topic of taking advice, I was told I needed to write more on my blog to get back into the swing of things by a good southern doctor friend of mine, she knows who she is and that’s what counts here. In the end, I do walk for over 1 1/2 hours each evening and now write more on my blog, if this can be called actual writing to y’all. I enjoy my walks because it is very peaceful, very relaxing, and doctors say it benifits my health. Bonus.

Over the last few weeks I have noticed that the water fowl down on the pond and surrounding it have been acting differently which means that they are either spooked or they have just moved on. I am pretty lucky because this pond always attracts some spectacular wildlife to observe. When I looked a bit closer at the overgrown side of the pond I found 2 different places that a predator had made a meal of a few of the young ducks. This didn’t surprise me as my property backs up to the woods, a creek, and a few thousand acres of absolute nothingness. There have been some small paw prints in the mud around the area so I know there are dogs running around. I never minded them because they stay well out of sight and down in the bottoms of my property. I have seen one out of what I expect to be 3 or 4 of these “wild” dogs. I have had to pop that one in the ass with a pellet gun twice because it was getting closer with curiosity and I don’t need that in my actual yard around my house or other buildings. So, we tolerate each others presence so to say.

Later in the afternoon yesterday I had company on my walk, my 17 y/o daughter wanted to talk to me alone. Without getting to much into the talk right here so we don’t get sidetracked let me just say it was about her boyfriend and some problems he is having financially. In the end I was asked if he could move in. When I am done here I will get into that father daughter talk. That being said, the company was a pleasant change to my normal routine. As she gets older she seems to need daddy less and less each day. So, we walked, talked, and enjoyed the peaceful trek. About 45 minutes into our walk we noticed an odd smell, the distinct smell of something dead. This is a smell, for those of the all who don’t know, that is unmistakable, and as we got closer to the source it became much stronger in the air. She tried to guess what it could be that had perished in the woods and then she began to worry me a bit because she asked “what if it is a dead body?” Where in the hell did that come from? However, one never knows what one will stumble across in the woods while on a walk. Putting on my best daddy face I assured her it was not a dead human body we were smelling and this I know for a fact. There is a distinctly different smell between a rotting circus of an animal and that of a human being. What can I say, I have been around the block once or twice. Just imagine learning some of life’s lessons which can not be taught by another person rather they must be learned by experiencing them. Enough said about that, we have a dead animal to find now. Why? Because if we don’t then other predators will come to investigate the smell of death and then I might have a problem I don’t really want on my hands. The plan was to find it, remove it, and get it in the burn pile before it sparks too much interest with the other wildlife.

We walked ahead maybe 20 yards or so and we found the source. I was actually surprised because I was non this part of the trail Sunday evening and this was not here. There was actually more surprise in my mind than just the fact that it was laid there dead. In all the years I have lived here, pushing 10 years now, I have only seen one other coyote and she was on the other side of the creek heading away from the backside of my property. In fact, that was right about 7 years ago so its not like it is a common sight. Oh sure, we hear them in the dead of the night in the far off distance but never see them or any of their activities. But here we have a dead juvenile coyote. I flipped it over looking for obvious injuries and see nothing. I actually expected to see a bullet wound which would mean it just wandered up here and died from its injuries. But there is no clear sign. I called a friend of mine who works with the state of Texas wildlife department to find out what I needed or could do. He told me to just wait and he would come check it out. After he arrived and checked it out it was determined to be a natural death. We loaded the coyote into the bed of his personal truck, said our goodbyes, and that was that. I was in a hurry now to get up to my shop because I had a bag of lye  which I wanted to spread out where the coyote had been to get rid of the smell. Once that was done I had to go shower to get cleaned up for the night. Something my daughter had already done.

I see now that I will have to keep an eye on my land down by the bottoms because I do not need the predator threat around here. I may need to start walking with more than just my stick from now on for sure. Later last night my daughter was on the phone with her boyfriend where I heard her tell him that we had talked and about how our walk turned into a gruesome discovery. I giggled to myself as I walked by because I thought it was it was great, personally, walking and talking with the daughter who seems to have outgrown her daddy.