Don’t Make Me Go Old School On You

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Yea, y’all heard me. Cool phone, huh? While cleaning out my storage I came across this jewel of a phone. Thought I would share it with y’all since this was my very first cell phone ever which I got in the summer of 1999. I wish I had this to show my kids every time the bitched about their phones. The screen is too small, its too slow, and so on and so forth. Yes, it is a Nokia, the going rage back then, as well as being one of very few options one could purchase. I was all teched out back then, had my pager (which I guess is lost somewhere) and my phone, oh was I living the life back then…..lol. Wondering why I still have it yet? Damn good question, my best guess is it went in a box with other shit, taped up, and put out of sight, like many other things I have found, until today, which has been like a fucking treasure hunt. Much of this stuff in storage has been boxed up for about 15 years or so, some of this shit goes all the way back to the mid-80s and more added once I got out of the Air Force. So far, day one of cleaning this jam packed 10×20 storage has been a journey. Why in the hell do we keep stuff? I mean really, what’s the point? On the flip side of that question I do have things in storage which are near and dear to me, hand me downs from grandparents, my dad, and stuff I collected around the world. But damn, there’s allot of just straight junk and trash in there also. It’s always been the catch all for shit we didn’t have room for and didn’t know what to do with.

But, that time has come and gone, the time is now to make a clean break, a new start, and I made a decent dent in it today. At least now I can walk into the space, before today I could only reach in. I have tomorrow and three days next week to get anything out that fits in my car that way when I roll up the last week of this month with my trailer I’m only moving “furniture” items. My goal is to reduce the boxes to about 25% or so and so far I’m doing a fine job. And so far so good, no live or dead critters have been found and I haven’t come across anything that is wet yet, so the  surprises have been down to a minimum.

Anyway, this little post is pretty pointless, but I just wanted to check in with everyone, let y’all know I was still alive, and at the same time share a little nostalgia with everyone. Yes, I know a few of y’all were very young in 1999 so by the time you got your first cell phone they had come a long way. I’m sure if I find more great shit I will take a picture of it and share it in the near future. Once everything slows down by the end of this month I will be able to get back to “blogging” more. Until we meet again, remember to eat it every day!

Wondering Where To Begin……

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Have you ever had such a daunting task ahead of you that you truly try to avoid it altogether? I just so happen to have such a task ahead of me. Looks like lady luck is on my side once again today because its raining. Which works for me because I’ve been fucking avoiding the task of cleaning out my storage unit for a couple years now. I can only imagine all of you OCD motherfuckers freaking out right now as you look at the picture. But, in all seriousness, its time to get it done, time to get out what we want, trash the trash, donate the old clothes and toys, and sell a few things I have been holding onto for years.

It’s time, I’ve been packratting this storage unit since 2000. Now that my daughter is married and moved out of our apartment we have a spare bedroom. So, we decided that the storage unit could go. I did the math the other day, $80.00 a month for 180 months is $14,400.00 that I’ve paid to store everything we didn’t want to throw away. That’s allot of fucking money! So, now we will weed through all of it and be done with the storage space. I’m actually kinda excited to see what I will find. I can only say I actually can account accurately for about 30% of the contents. Stuff like camping gear, holiday decorations, a waterbed, a dresser, an antique singer sewing machine, an electronic dart board, a $4,000.00 bowflex, and most of my Air Force stuff. I can’t even guess on anything else. Yes, I know its sad. Oh, and there’s a few boxes of Japanese antiques I told my ex I got rid of only because she wanted them. I’m interested in those boxes, got some stuff from older dynasties, 1700s and 1800s. This should be interesting, there’s stuff from this and my prior marriage, there’s just no telling what I will find.

I will be working on this the rest of the month as I need to be out by the 1st. For the things I will be selling or giving away I will offer it up here first I guess. It’s bigger stuff like the dart board for sure, but it would need to be picked up as I can no longer deliver. We’ll just have to see how it all plays out. My intentions are to get it cleaned out, then see where I’m at. Can’t start tomorrow, will be at the VA most of the day I guess, time for my next fluid draining and shot in my knee. This little ordeal usually fucks me up for a few days. I’m sure this isn’t the last post about the storage, I will update as I get into it. Maybe one more month won’t hurt…..

A “Blast” From My Past……………

Anymore when I go looking through things I have had in long term storage, meaning its in the very back, buried in the very bottom, usually under something pretty heavy, long term storage. Lost and forgotten by all practical aspects of not knowing what is even where. In my Air Force days, working in the munitions careerfield, plainly just called AMMO by us, I collected unused ammo cans because they make excellent storage vessels for practically anything that would fit in them. Once I got out of the Air Force, and over the years, pretty much all I have had are gone. The ones I have still today still are being used in the original nature of the cans, to hold ammo. My dad asked me to look and see if I had any extras laying around because he’d found some plans on the internet to make a stove and a portable set of speakers. He wants to make one of each for himself sometime in the near future.

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Luckily for him I found three cans, my last remaining three cans being unused, that I gave to him for his projects. All three cans were empty except for one, it held a roll of very unique stickers that I would be required to use way back when. I can’t even remember putting the roll of stickers in there, but when I opened the can, there they sat, unmessed with since the late 90s. Almost like digging up an old artifact in a way. It’s got the best of me as my memories fade, trying to figure out why they were there. Just goes to prove that things sealed in these cans stay well preserved and if I hadn’t opened the can they would still be in that ammo can at the bottom of the pile.

I’m looking forward to seeing the old man’s work as he repurposes these old cans into something someone has dreamt up. One day he will let me see them, I’m sure, and I will post his diy projects for others to try. I just hope I don’t need to dig for any more stuff for him because there isn’t no telling what I will find.

The Death Of A Journey’s Ghost

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I’ve wrote my fair share here about how I worshipped at the alter of Crown Royal for many years. However, I have never told the story of the journey I thought I was on, the journey where I was looking for the questions to answers I had, and how my journey came to an absolute sudden stop. Over the past weekend I came across a ghost from my not so distant past. I wasn’t looking for the ghost, but I think I was lead to finding it for a reason. I think my finding the ghost let me reflect about the past and how it led me to be where I am today. Over the years I have given alcoholics a very hard time because I don’t believe being an alcoholic is a disease or a disability because it’s absolutely not, being an alcoholic is a choice because drinking is a choice. Personally, at this point in my life I don’t care if a single person agrees with me or disagrees with me, it’s a choice and that’s a damn fact. Oddly enough, I’m listening to “Whiskey In The Jar” by Metallica as I write about all of this. I can’t help it, I like the song, it drowns out the chatter of the conversation happening in Spanish 10 feet away. I didn’t need to be put in a “mood” because I was already there, already at the point where I had opened the wounds far enough where I was ready to write without any struggles. But I am struggling, I struggle with the feelings and emotions that have come out since opening the coffin of my dead journey. The big question y’all might be having is what journey died and how did it die. First of all, the short answer is I didn’t like where my life was going so I killed it dead, then I stomped a mudhole into it, then I kicked the shit out of it, then I burned it until it was a crispy critter,  and then I buried it. Obviously I didn’t kill it or bury real well, I killed it alright, but my burial lacked conviction because I found it or it found me, however one chooses to look at it.

Now, before we begin exploring, let me just add that I’m not glorifying drinking or downplaying alcoholism as a prominent problem in American society. You might here me poke fun or saying derogatory things about both, but they are based on my experience, my observation, and my own opinion. So, with that, let’s start at the end because that is where my actual journey began. When I’m done writing this today this the journey might be over, it might get buried again, and for sure the reminders (triggers) have been dealt with accordingly. So, anyway, I was looking through some boxes in my storage building for a box, which as I found, was un-labeled, that contained files I needed, to include my DD-214 (discharge paperwork) and some other VA paperwork. Back when I packed all this up it would appear that liquor boxes were what I had. Mostly because I worked at a bar, so I always liberated the sturdy boxes. I didn’t know what box the files I was looking for actually looked like because I have slept since that day. As I went through the boxes, opening around 50 or so boxes, I came across a long forgotten collection, I found 3 boxes of Crown Royal bags of mixed and varied sizes. I sat down in my chair and thought damn, this was a slap in the face I wasn’t expecting. Way back when, back in the day if you will, I used to drink allot, you may not actually be able to comprehend how much, just know it was more than the average social drinker. My drink of choice was Crown Royal on ice, and many times I just skipped the ice altogether because I kept my Crown in a freezer. When I was in the Air Force I stockpiled Crown Royal, when I say stockpiled I bought it regularly by the case or two to three cases at a time. It wasn’t because I had parties all the time, it was my personal drinking stock. When I drank with friends I drank what they had and usually allot of tequila.

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I can’t even began to phatheom the amount of Crown Royal I drank just while I was in the Air Force. Need I remind everyone that I built explosives for a living? To this day it still surprises me that I still have all my fingers. When I got my retirement orders I began to really stock up because I knew I would need Crown Royal on the cheap after my departure. I priced it out on the economy and found that I could buy it at the package store on base for right around 1/5 the cost. After I got out I drank as I pleased like there was no end to my supply for around 2 years. I always had an excuse to drink, if there is such a thing. My brother-in-law at the time, married to my baby sister, was an entertainer of sorts. He had a small band that consisted of himself as lead singer and guitar player, his sister who also sang and played keyboard, and her husband who played the drums. On occasion there were other members but my brother-in-law was such a dick that they didn’t stay that long. Anyway, every weekend starting Friday night they would play all the local dive country bars which were all b.y.o.b. (bring your own bottle) holes in the wall in the middle of nowhere at times. I don’t care for the wanging and twanging of country music much but I figured what a better place to get laid than by some drunk redneck girls. It has been my experience that redneck girls can ride for well over 8 seconds. After an ugly divorce I wanted two things in life and only two things, I wanted to drink to forget my own name and I wanted to fuck anyone who didn’t need me to remember her name.

Bonus, I could do as much as I wanted of both and nobody batted an eye at me. Not that it would have mattered because quite simply I didn’t give a shit about anyone’s opinion. About six months after getting out of the Air Force, while working for my father the concrete contractor, I found myself working on the other side of town. After an extremely long day in the heat, humidity, and the hot Texas sun, I was ready to call it quits for the day. Making my way home I drove by a bar with an advertisement I could not ignore, they were have a wet t-shirt contest, and drink specials. I was all over it. When I went in, after paying cover, I was entering the club with a mission, get drunk and find some tail. Bingo! The first thing I saw was a fantastic ass bent over the bar grabbing something from behind. My reaction? I walked up to her and smacked that ass with all my might! She jumped up so fast I almost got whiplash watching her. I knew something was up because it was all happening in slow motion and I was still 100% sober. She looked me square in the eye and TOLD me I owed her some drinks, some dancing, and a good fucking to take her mind off of how bad her ass was stinging. It’s a deal. We drank. We danced, well, she danced, I just moved around in a stuper. We drank. We made out a bit. We drank. Then I took her home, she was special.

We got married a year and a half later. Before that we spent allot of time together, I eventually moved her and her young daughter (1) into my apartment on the other side of town. She got a job and we were moving on. I introduced her to my weekend habit of going out to country gigs and life was one big party. Shortly after we got married, within the first month or so, after a night out partying, I woke up in my own puke. This wasn’t the first time, but I vowed that morning it was going to be the last damn time. And y’all know what? I’ve never looked back. Shortly after that my dad retired, leaving me without a job, so I contacted a friend of a friend of a friend who hired me as their front end bartender. My wife was worried that being in that close contact with alcohol that I would be heading back down the path of least resistance. She had no problem with it being a full nude strip bar but worried about me around all the alcohol. She had always heard it only takes one sip and all hell can break loose.

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Fortunately for both of us I had no interest in the drinking any more. No, I never really quit drinking, but I quit drinking myself just shy of a coma every night. In fact, these days I don’t drink much at all, we don’t go out to bars, and most of my friends are actually family. So far so good. Personally I can’t see myself going back, I know, never say never. What happened to the Crown Royal bags? Currently my mother-in-law has them in her possession. She wanted them to make a quilt for me. I explained I didn’t need a quilt because I don’t want the everyday reminder of what an asshole I was when I was drinking. So who knows what she will eventually do with them. No, there was no Crown Royal remaining, which is unfortunate because that makes an easy Christmas present for most of the people I know.  You’ve heard of cleaning out one’s closet, well this was my version. Oh, I found all the records I was hunting for in the first place. No telling what is in the rest of those boxes, probably shit I don’t need to be seeing anyways.

Explaining My Three Fathers

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Explaining my three fathers to my children has always been stories I enjoy telling. Sometimes it is like going down the wrong rabbit hole because it can be just a wee bit confusing. For those of y’all who just started playing along then I would guess y’all are at a bit of a loss. My recommendation is to search The Sting Of The Scorpion using the terms adoption, adopted, and biological. Then, perhaps y’all will be up to speed. Let me give a very brief review. I’m adopted, I’ve known my entire life. The fact that I was adopted was never the secret. In fact, until I turned 18 I never knew there was even a secret that people wished I never learned. In my case the records were sealed due to the circumstances of the pregnancy. Fortunately I was able to get them unsealed and have spent the better part of 25 years piecing together everyone’s dirty little secret, me.

On the backside of my property there lives an enormous oak tree. I find that when I’m in the presence of this oak tree that I tend to think of my family tree. My family tree is really twisted. If one was to look at it analytically I am actually the part of three family trees, if not more,  each in a separate way that leads into a different direction. Confused yet? We’ll get back to that. I have had “family”, specifically my biological family, on my mind recently since we (my wife & I) are planning to visit my oldest daughter (23) in Rapid City South Dakota over spring break this coming March 2014. Most of my biological family lives in the state of South Dakota, as well as my biological father and adopted father are both buried there also. For the purposes of explanation in this post the following will be the reference points when I discuss my three fathers, BF = Biological Father, AF = Adopted Father, SF = Step Father, my BM (biological mother/birth mother), and my AM (adopted mother/mother). Refer back to these abbreviations during this post if needed.

Everyone seems to want a piece of me when we go on the trip when all I really care to do is spend time with my daughter and my 2 y/o granddaughter whom we haven’t seen in some time now. Now, personally, my “agenda” will be to spend time with my wife, kids, and my granddaughter. Now, will that happen? Your guess is as good as mine. As my younger children get older they have began to have questions about family because my side of the family is kinda complicated. Recently I, for the second or third time now, tried to explain things to my son, who I finally now think gets it. Me being adopted is not what is in question. How this fits into my life as well as my kids life is what always seems to be confusing. And, when I explain it here I might go out-of-order and bounce around a bit so just try pay attention. Like I mentioned above, from this point further I will address my fathers by their relationship to me. I needed to explain all of this to my children because they have never met my BF (biological father) or my AF (adopted father), all three of them only know my SF (step father) and all three of my children will be meeting my biological family (many of them but probably not all of them) in March.

So lets see where to begin here. I was born 06 November 1968 in a little town in the southeast of South Dakota. I was placed with my adopted parents within days of my birth. My adopted parents were divorced by the time I was 6. I will get into that another time. By the time I was turning 7 my mother was re-married and we all moved to the southwest side of Houston Texas. My AF remained in South Dakota where I visited him every Christmas break and summer vacation until he died at the end of the summer in 1983. I remained being raised by my SF and still to this day consider him to be my dad. Anything y’all read around this blog about the current happenings with my parents is about my mother and step father, which he is never referred to in the real world. There was never any secret of me being adopted, I have always “known” because I was told early on. Why? I don’t know. Before I start the next part, let it be known that my SF and my mother (AM) have always loved me and raised me if I was their own blood son. Their loyalty to me as a son has never, nor will it ever, be in question.

Once I was out on my own, joined the United States Air Force, married, and had my first daughter I was asked about my family history so medical records for my daughter could be started. I was at a loss, I was actually crushed because here I brought a child into existence and I don’t even know if I passed something on to her genetically that had the potential of being bad. I struggled with this fact for a few months as I held my daughter in my arms wondering if there were going to be things about herself that she would never know. After a brief discussion with my wife and a long conversation with my mother (AM) the decision was made I was going to find out who I was. It was the thought at the time, it gave me hope for myself and my daughter. Since I was stationed in Japan in 1991 I had to do things the old-fashioned way, I had to write letters. I actually only wrote two different letters, form letters, which I used to inquire about my adoption records and my biological parents. I won’t lie, I hit allot of dead ends, I got wrapped up in allot of red tape, and I was at a point (after a year) where I was ready to give up because there didn’t seem to be any information to have. Then, out of the blue, when I was ready to quit, I received a letter from the office of the Judge that was over my case back in 1968. I was informed that they had the information I was seeking, but, since I was overseas I needed to provide all my personal information along with an affidavit from my commander confirming my identity.

I gathered everything I had, to include birth certificate and the letter from my commander, loaded it in an envelope and sent it on it’s way. For the first couple of weeks I waited very patiently, then a month rolled by and my patience was wearing thin. After 3 months I just gave up. Soon after I received another letter from the office of the judge informing me that he has reviewed my case and my request and is granting my request to have my adoption records unsealed. I was informed that they were ordered sealed due to the circumstances of the adoption and the biological mother as a request of her parents. I had no idea what all of that meant and was more confused than ever. The following day I received a package (large envelope) from the judge’s office that had a complete copy of everything that was filed in accordance with my adoption proceedings. It was worse than my worst nightmare, everything I wanted to know was blacked out like this was some kind of top secret document. All of the names, dates, places, agencies, and so forth were either removed or blacked out altogether. These documents read like a very well written mystery, with one exception, I never got to find out “who did it”. So, for now, the quest for information is dead.

I was divorced in 1998, we split everything up, she went one way, and my daughter and I remained. I put 90% of my stuff into storage where it sat for the next few years. In 2000 I was remarried, I welcomed with open arms my own step daughter (that will be the only time you ever hear me refer to her as a step anything) and finishing up the remaining time I had for active duty Air Force Guard. In 2001, after my son was born, we decided we wanted to raise our family in a house and not an apartment. I didn’t want just any house, I wanted a house we could grow into, grow old in, and not need to move any more, as I was tired of all the moving over the years being in the Air force, I was done moving. I spent the next 18 months designing our new house. My wife thought I was the obvious choice as the architect since that is what I have a degree in. So I did it, between working for my SF as a concrete contractor I spent the hours needed creating our dream home. Once we were happy with the design I submitted it to a Texas state licensed architect for the “stamp of approval” I needed to move forward. I found 10.4 acres in a large lot subdivision that we really fell in love with. For the next 18 months we watched our dream come true.

After we got moved in I announced I needed to make a trip to New Mexico to gather my belongings out of a storage unit there. So, my oldest daughter and I loaded up a trailer and made the road trip. It wasn’t much, mostly boxes full of records, pictures, and different things I had collected while I was in the Air Force bouncing around the world. When we got back home I went to unpack the boxes and noticed the one that had all of my adoption research in it. Not wanting to stop, I had my daughter just put the box in the master bedroom closet for later. After about a month of organizing I was at the computer paying some bills, checking the weather, and just when I was getting done my wife comes in and announces “we need to talk” with tears rolling down her face. (Fuck! What did I do?) I knew I have done nothing so that couldn’t be it, so what was it. I noticed in her hand a letter that I had written so many years before and she asked me when I was going to tell her. Tell her? I thought she knew I was adopted, I really thought this had come up in conversation before. It had, but my quest for information was never talked about. To tell you the truth the box was put in my closet to protect it from humidity damage, I had no intention of going through it because in my opinion the quest was dead and I had given up. I explained to her I had no interest in talking about it but she was free to read all of it if she wanted to.

A few days later I was piddling around in the garage putting some shelves up when my wife comes out to let me know I had a phone call. Weird because I didn’t even hear the phone ring which was mere feet from where I was working. My wife holds her hand over the mouth piece as she whispers that she loves me in my ear. After I said hello there was an extremely long dramatic pause, so I said hello again. This time a woman said hello back to me. She went on to explain that my wife contacted her the day before and asked if her and I could talk. Okay, lets talk. She informed me of who she was, she explained to me that she was my biological mother (BM). I was at a loss for words. She told me she would tell me anything I wanted to know. She said we are older now so it was time for the truth to be told. Okay. She gave me a name and claimed it to be the biological father’s name but never kept up with him after I was born so that is all she knew. She then needed to go, this was too emotional for her, so we hung up. I was dumbstruck to say the least. Seems my wife is pretty sneaky. She told me she had “friends” who knew what to do with the information I had and in less than 24 hours had a name and a current phone number. Really? Really.

We found a number for the name she gave me and gave it a call. The plot thickened because the person she had me call was my BF’s good friend from back in the day. He put his name as the father and so forth to protect his friend’s marriage. This lie came between them a few years later and the friendship was severed, so he didn’t see the harm in giving me his name, the real name this time and he even had the phone number. After hanging up with him I called the number and asked to speak with the named person I was given and I was informed at that time by the man on the other end that he has been deceased since 1996. The man I was talking to was my BF’s wife’s new husband. He gave me the name and phone number of their oldest son if I wanted to talk with him because he might have more information. When I called him I got the answering machine. I left a message for him to call me and my information. When he returned the call we spoke for many hours because I knew things that nobody outside of their immediate family should even know. We were able to fill in each others blank spaces so to say. I offered up a DNA test to prove who I was and I was told that it wasn’t necessary he knew that I had to be genuine. The puzzle was indeed coming together for me and I basically unraveled everything he had ever known to be true. A few days later, his mother called me, she said she felt obligated since her husband had died before I could “confront” him in person. Yea, him being dead really did throw a wrench in it all for me.

I kept in telephone contact with my BF’s side of the family for a couple of years before it came time to go to my oldest daughter’s graduation in Rapid City South Dakota. She decided to go live with her mom, who guilted her into believing that her life was just too damn lonely without her. Since we were going to South Dakota for her graduation I had the bright idea that this would be the perfect time to meet my biological family as well as visit my AF’s grave that I have not seen since the day I buried him. I also contacted my BM and told her I was willing to drive to northern Idaho to meet her while we were on our trip. She declined as well as asking me not to contact her or her two other sons ever again. I have honored her request. I visited my AF’s grave, which was hard, it was emotional, and left me drained. The following day I visited my BF’s grave. This was hard as well but something I felt I needed to do. Why? I felt he needed to “see” me and “hear” my voice, I needed him to hear me and see me. I met all of his children, 4 sons and 4 daughters, and a whole slough of grandbabies, nieces, and nephews who had zero idea who this strange man was that was at their grandma’s house. The accepted me, it was like I had been on a long trip or lived far away and was finally returning home. Was it bizarre? Absolutely bizarre. by the time these 3 days were over my brain was mush, I felt like the wash cloth that gets crumpled up and left to dry in the corner of the shower, I was just done. But I had a graduation to go to, I had to get back on the road to drive five hours away to get to the next town for my oldest daughter’s graduation.

I talked with my daughter quite a bit about what has been happening. It involved her as well because the people I just met were here “people” biologically as well. I don’t think she was prepared for these talks but I know she walked away feeling better because now she had a few more answers that I could never give her before. The graduation was awesome, we were so happy for her because we know what an accomplishment it is to graduate. We spent the next few days with my daughter, doing different things, just her and I, it had been a long time since we got to just sit and shoot the shit together. The day came that it was time to head home, it was time to head back to Texas. I was out of energy, I was drained, and borderline torn if I needed to extend my trip so I could go to Idaho. Then, after a heated debate with myself, we drove back to Texas.

To this day I am close to my father (SF). He is close with all of my children. Until just weeks ago my 17 y/o daughter and my 12 y/o son didn’t know he was my step father. I had to explain so much to say so little. My son is looking forward to the trip to South Dakota to visit with people and to see the grave which bears the name of his grandfather which he has never met but was named after. It should be an interesting trip. My whole family will be involved this time in meeting all the biologicals, I’m told it will be a family reunion of sorts. I hope my wife and kids are up for the journey which is ahead of us. I will let y’all know if I was up to it when we get back. Until then, I guess this story is on pause. It’s not over, but it’s over for right now. I wonder what other people do when they try to explain their own family tree(s) to their kids. I bet allot of people are glad their roots aren’t so complicated.

Moving Madness Multiplied

trucktrailer

I like to think that I’m real easy-going most of the time. In person, people know that I usually have no problem helping out someone when asked. People know I have certain equipment and that I usually work pretty cheap. With that being said, a few weeks ago I was asked by my wife to contact her pastor so I could sit down with him because he had a “favor” to ask of me. At first I was in shock because she had the absolute brass balls to come to me with something he wants. You see, the pastor and I have a little history of bad blood. In other words, I wouldn’t piss on him if he was on fire. Get the connection. I don’t like him or what he stands for. However, money is money if there is money involved. She told me that they would “rent” my time and the use of my dually and my 48′ box trailer. Rent me? apparently my time and equipment is worth money now, who knew. Perhaps I could chat with the jackass and see what he has in mind. The whole meeting was real uncomfortable for me because, in no fewer words, I despise him as a human being. The meeting was short and involved the details, which were pretty sketchy if you ask me. Anyway, I needed to be in place at the church by no later that 6 a.m. on Saturday 14 September 2013 with my truck and trailer and should be done somewhere around 3 p.m. that same day. I was pre-paid the entire “rental fee” as it was listed on his receipt I signed and noted as “other church services” at the bottom. What was I paid? I was paid $1,500.00 for my services. Which, after doing a little research was real cheap since most rentals of the same caliber, like a 48′ box truck, had a $1,5000.00 deposit, $495.00 per day rental, $1.09 per mile, and the cost of the amount of fuel used. So, I was real cheap in comparison. He never asked me what I wanted to charge, he just told me what he needed and what he was willing to pay, take it or leave it. I should have left it right on the table. I shouldn’t have just returned his call and told him to kiss my ass and never looked back. But, for some reason, my wife gets involved and she asked me nicely. Her, I respect her opinion.

So, anyway, Friday evening my son and I prepped the trailer, meaning we swept it out and made sure all the tires were aired up properly since this trailer has been sitting in the same spot for over a year. Everything checked out which was a relief. We went into town and fueled up the dually then returned and hooked the trailer up. Again, no problems. We were ready to go in the morning. My son and I arrived to the church at 5:30 in the morning. While we waited we ate our breakfast burritos we got on the way, my sons request. At just after 7 in the morning not one person has shown up yet, not one. I called the pastor and my call went straight to voicemail. Seriously. I called my wife, who in turn was on her way to the church to collect my son to go to get his hair cut and do a few errands. She has not heard from the pastor. Promptly at 8 the pastor showed up, parks, and comes to my truck. He asked why I was here so early at the same time I was asking where everyone was. He apologized as he must have “forgotten” to call me, there was a change of plans because a few people couldn’t show up until 8 in the morning. According to him he did tell me when this all developed 2 weeks ago. Thinking back, that would have been the perfect time to just drive away. It was breach of contract on his part. But, I’m a sucker for punishment I don’t deserve, so I stayed. Immediately I was being told to move so I could back up across a sidewalk and across a section of grass, about 30 feet. Doesn’t this idiot know how heavy this truck and trailer are? Come to find out, nobody cared, it will all be okay. Piss on that, I will not pay to get towed out. So, I continue backing up, I hear screeching as the tree branches slide down the sides of the trailer. I’m thinking it just keeps getting better at this point. It made ruts going in I can’t wait to see the ruts when I pull out. Have y’all ever just known that something was going to turn into a great story. I knew that it would be a factoid when I was first told about this crap. Sometimes I can see the future.

Pretty much the entire day I either sat in the a/c in my truck or I would walk around a bit to stretch and see how loaded the trailer was becoming. According to my wife, somebody donated a large sum of money to the administration of the church so the church could update their offices, the two classrooms, and the day care. So, that is what they were loading, all the furniture coming out. I was supposed to take the loaded trailer to a warehouse where the people who bought all the furniture at auction were to unload it. At almost 7 p.m. they finished up. They almost completely had the trailer full and packed pretty well, I was almost impressed. After closing it up one of the men guided me out back into the parking lot. I thought I was stuck coming across the sidewalk, but after the trailer snapped it as it rolled over it everything was smooth getting out. I wonder what will be said about that because I told them it was going to happen, not maybe, but that it would get broken, my opinion was dismissed by the pastor. So, the pastor gives me the address and directions to the warehouse, it was about 30 minutes away. The only thing I can think is I hope they unload it faster than the trailer got loaded. When I arrived to the address I was presented with a rather tight turn into the driveway, it took me a little time to negotiate it but I got it. I went up to the office and explained who I was and I was told that I didn’t have permission to be in here number one and I needed a copy of the manifest or receipt before they would accept it. I was told to hurry up because they closed at 9 p.m. and would not be back until Tuesday. After multiple calls to the good pastor and to my wife I was getting nowhere fast. I was, however, growing more pissed by the minute. At 9 I was asked to remove my truck and trailer from the property. At 9:15 I finally get a call from the pastor who explained he had taken the men and woman who helped him all day out to dinner which is why he couldn’t take my calls. He says he was unaware that I needed paperwork and would talk to his contact about making arrangements. I told him I was going home. When he asked where his stuff was going to be I explained it will be at my house tucked away out of my way. I waited all day Sunday for his call. Finally around 3 I called him and he actually answered the phone. He has been busy all day and has not been able to make arrangements and rushed to get off the phone with me.

Today, being Monday, I still have their stuff inside my trailer which is parked out at my house. At this point I really don’t know when he thinks I will be able to take it to the warehouse. I work, I have a day job that I can’t just up and leave at the drop of a phone call. After Wednesday when I get off work if he has not arranged anything then he will be having to wait until the end of the following week since I have foot surgery scheduled bright and early this Thursday morning. I told my wife I am charging him storage, $150.00 a day and that started Sunday. Snidely, she told me to do what I am comfortable doing and hung up. This has worked out well so far I think. Should be an interesting week. I have a feeling when this is said and done I will never be available to assist these people again. Everytime I do it turns into a complete clusterfuck on their part.