Friday, April 29, 2011

The Wedding of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge

Today it seemed the whole world was focused on William and Kate's wedding. I think one television station estimated a billion people viewed it while there was a million in the square surrounding the church. Many were focused on the wedding, the participants and the pomp and circumstance as though they were a part of their family. Kate did look beautiful. William did look handsome. Even the presiding Bishop looked the part. Yet as all this was going on the advertisement begging for donation for Save The Children Foundation crept into my mind. They showed a pre-teen kid from some far off land who had lost his parents and was forced to take care of his three brothers. He was feeding them gruel with his hands and if they got sick there was no one to take care of them unless we, me, you (?), sent them money through this foundation then collectively they could get schooling, food, shelter, clothing . Without help they would all die.  But who cares for today we are witnessing a ROYAL WEDDING!

As my mind drifted back to this great wedding I wondered how much it had cost. It was certainly opulent enough, dare I say, more than enough. But what the heck this is royalty and they deserve it, the divine right of kings and all that stuff. I wondered how they got all this wealth. I am not sure but I think every English subject donates something to keep them wealthy. I might ask why not? But then I might ask what do they do to deserve this. William's mother did bring the status of women to another level and Kate is continuing along that fashion. Then my mind slipped to something I read, or did I see it on 60 minutes (?), where some places like the backwaters of India still give daughters in marriages and if they don't work out and the family refuses to take them back they are immolated. We do know of many places women have to walk around completely covered and if they step out of line they are beaten and could be stoned to death. Ah, but Kate looks so beautiful in her pure virginal white wedding gown and she IS the star. We'll  worry about the other women some other time for now we've got a ROYAL WEDDING to watch.

They are driving off now to go home change and get ready for the big party at the Castle Mum is letting them use tonight. They don't have to drive very far and their home is naturally fit for royalty. The crowds are cheering and everyone is so happy. Back home in Alabama, the President and the elected officials are walking around the devastation brought on by tornadoes the like have never been seen before or so I am told. People, dead, hurt. Homes, towns completely destroyed. Literally, nothing left for them except to pick up what they can, find a shelter and hope FEMA doesn't fail them like they failed the victims of Katrina. But The Duke and Duchess are going to their grand home to get ready for the big evening festivities so let's shove Alabama, Mississippi and all of that dreadful stuff to the back of our heads. With a Royal Wedding about we've got to be joyful or these Elite people will not be able to enjoy their opulent gluttony.

I wonder if they will continue to show the night festivities on Television. We would have to see it if at all possible. The Palace will be filled with the world's important people, the only one's that matter. These important people will be filling themselves with wine, great food and dancing and laughing. The world is a great place. Then my mind slips into some sort of crazy thought, there are more people going to bed tonight hungry than there are those who have eaten enough. There are those children picking over garbage dumps to see if they can get something to wear or eat. There are children being used in sex trafficking all over the world.
Hey let's get real. Even Christ said we will always have the poor with us but didn't he imply that we should at least be aware of them and try to fill their needs? Oh forget about it. Today we had a ROYAL WEDDING.
It is time to eat, drink and be merry, at least for us who can; for those who can't. TOUGH!

Friday, April 22, 2011

A Slightly Different Easter Story

The Easter theme is all about dieing to one's self and becoming reborn in the Spirit with all that means through Jesus Christ's suffering, death and resurrection. Down through the ages philosophers and theologians have examined what this means to the human race. I am sure they will continue to do so. I would like to take you back to an earlier time when the arrival of Easter had a purely human element to it. Let's go back to 1944. The country was embroiled in WW II, many of the young men were away on the battle front but the women, children and older guys were on the home front. The nation was coming out of the worst depression ever experienced by many due to the war which saw full employment and heavy deficit spending. The end of fasting and abstaining for Catholics ended at noon Easter Saturday. Then we kids ate all the candy and cake we couldn't eat for forty days. We looked forward to Easter Sunday's feast which was being worked on by our mothers. Most of our fathers were still working on Saturdays either at their own jobs or their weekend jobs. All of us were looking forward to Sunday's Mass since it would be the first time we'd wear our Easter clothes. My family consisted of Mom, Dad, my brother and myself. Every Easter all of us had new clothes which was purchased during the Easter season. Don't get me wrong, it wasn't a big splurge like thousands of dollars, but it was a big deal. Dad would get a new suit with two pants. Mom got a new dress, gloves stockings and a big rimmed hat. My brother and I used to get pants and shirts which we could wear to school and Sunday Mass. I couldn't wear hand me downs since my brother was four years older and extremely thin and tall while I was chubby, OK FAT, and short, Mr. Five by Five, five foot tall and five foot wide. So we both got new clothes. My Mom came from an extremely poor family so new clothes for her kids was a big thing, sort of made her look like she took good care of them. You know, sort of like when your Mom always told you to wear clean underwear in case you got into an accident, because God forgive if you did get into an accident and THEY saw you with dirty underwear THEY"D think you had a bad mother.

This year was something special. My Uncle was the head tailor for John Wanamaker a very glitzy department store in down town New York, in fact it still exists in Pennsylvania.  This year besides the discount he could get for us there was a great sale for young men's suits. The sale wasn't good for my brother because the pants were knickers but I hadn't progressed to long pants yet so it was good for me. I can still remember, the color was soft green and the jacket was measured to my size and so were the pants, it fit perfectly. My mom got argyle socks to match and a white shirt and brand new tie. I think my mom couldn't resist getting me the suit even though the cost was more than my father's yet it was really rich looking. I'm pretty sure she felt comfortable in the knowledge that whoever saw me dressed in such finery they'd know I had a good mother.

That Sunday I went off to Mass and I have to admit I looked pretty good, maybe even some of the girls would notice me. I walked to church standing very straight and proud. I even made sure my hair was combed. After Mass, we went over my Aunt's house and enjoyed a great feast. I made sure I didn't get any gravy (sauce) on my clothes. The fact is everything looked so good my mom had me wear it to school the next day, no spring break. I went through the day being careful not to play anything during schoolyard break that would dirty my great new suit. Right before the school day was over this kid Donald told me that Eddie McCray wanted to settle a score with me in the empty lot by the schoolyard. I couldn't back out so I agreed to a fight right after school let out at Three PM. School let out and we met. There was a big crowd which made a ring around us. There was always a big crowd whenever there was a fight. Somehow the whole school always knew and the whole school showed up from Grade 1 through 8 but none of the teachers came.

Eddie was six months behind me, we had the grades 1A, 1B and so on, I figured I could make short work of him. I handed the books to one of the guys who was like my handler. There were sides, evenly split, I turned to face him and walked into the frey just the way I thought Joe Louis would do but out of nowhere suddenly I was hit by more punches I could count. This couldn't just be Eddie I thought, he must have some help. I was wrong and Eddie all by himself was kicking the s**t out of me on the day after Easter and me in my spanking new expensive Easter suit. Suddenly he caught me above the eye and blood spurted out all over my jacket and white shirt. Punches were coming fast and furious all from Eddie and he must of missed one because he tripped into me grabbing my lapel ripping it off the jacket causing me to fall and rip a hole in the knee of the pants. I got up bleeding and daunted, uncrying as I was too numb to cry. Someone suggested the fight should end before someone got killed, I think he was referring to me. It was over Eddie was the victor and left with everyone following him leaving me with my books, which were sort of thrown at me, my beaten exterior and ripped brand new, expensive Easter suit my mother was so proud of.

It was a short walk home. When my mom saw me she was appalled, my eye was cut, I had a shiner, fat lip , bleeding and worst of all my suit was in tatters. "Are you OK?" she shouted sort of hysterically, when I answered I was OK she came at me fists flying careful not to hit me where I was bleeding and bruised, "I'm gonna' kill you!" Then it registered and her voice became more shrilled as she screamed "What have you done to your suit? Just wait till your father comes home!", the usual threat was shouted. She sent me upstairs to wait for her. When she came up she was more composed and washed my wounds using Mercurochrome instead
of the burning Iodine. Then I waited for supper and my father. He came home and didn't say much but my mother was still fuming. I didn't get new clothes until Christmas. I had to put up with what I had and squeeze into some of my brother's old clothes. She never said it but it was obvious she thought "Why can't he be more like his brother who never does things like this.", little did she know.

Anyway, that's my Easter story. What did I bring away from that Easter experience. Some six years later I was dressed to go out with my parents. I went to the schoolyard for a bit of socializing. This guy Albie started to provoke me and we had to have a fight. BUT this time I went home and changed into my old clothes and when I returned I fought more like Jersey Joe Walcott. I was also not MR. Five by Five anymore and was lifting weights and needless to say this time I won. I couldn't get myself to hit Albie with my fists since I remembered what happened to me so I slapped him around with open fists and got him in a headlock and he suggested a draw and I agreed. I knew what it was like to lose a schoolyard fight. You lost not only the fight but lost a lot of face which took a long time to get back. I went home and changed back into my clean clothes, everything intact. I also came to appreciate a great mom who really cared about me and a father who let boys be boys. So I guess I learned a lot that Easter season.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

It Really Wasn't All That Important

She had reached the time in her life where she could reflect on certain happenings that caused much grief or uneasiness at the time but really wasn't worth all that angst. The important things in her life, her children, grandchildren. Her marriage was for the most part happy but even that was troubled by doubts caused by youth and inexperience. She could do nothing about that now as her husband had been cut down far too young, at least in her mind, for them to enjoy "the golden years'. She wasn't sure how much time she would have left in this world so she was determined to enjoy every second while she still had the time. She did, however, spend time thinking about the past and the good times and the seemingly, not so good. This one experience seemed to be sticking in her mind today.

It happened over fifty years ago but it remained vivid in her mind as though it happened yesterday. They were married seven years but were still very young. The seven years produced five children and it seemed that all she was doing at the time was changing diapers. Back then there was only cloth diapers which had to be washed, even if a diaper service was used it was a tough job. As she mused about this she let a short chuckle go. Her husband kept saying at the time he couldn't understand why she seemed so tired all the time. Those first years of marriage seemed like a whirl-wind. They started out without any money and always seemed to be catching up. He promised her when he proposed was that they'd have a lot of love, laughs, kids but very little money and so far he made good on his promises. Over the last few years he took a chance on a new job with a small company and was a young man on the rise. They were able to pay off some debts but had very little left over for vacations or new clothes and other goodies. Of course he had to have the proper clothes to meet with executives and members of the financial community. Up to now she was at home out of the spotlight but now she was invited to a wedding of an executive that would have celebrities as well as other executives present. She had to look nice. Now, she could admit to herself, that she had her day. She was a super beauty that caused men's head to turn as well as some women. She never thought so, she thought she was plain. But now she knew she wasn't. Yes she had her day, yet she didn't enjoy it as she could have.

She fretted greatly over being at that wedding as though she would be exposed as a fumbling anchor around her husband's neck. She never let her husband know of her worries but she spent some sleepless nights as the day approached. She was afraid of looking foolish, little did she realize that everyone that met her only saw great beauty and a happy heart. The day had arrived. It was a beautiful late March day, a bite in the sun drenched air. A day that held a promise of better days to come. She recalled that she wasn't happy with her outfit yet she had to stay within their budget and everything she liked cost twice of what she spent. She managed to get the nylons that covered her varicose veins brought about by frequent childbirth and she guessed she looked good enough for the day. They arrived at the church and managed to sit in the rear pew unobserved and out of the way. In a short time the Bride arrived and the ceremony began.

As the ceremony was nearing its end her husband leaned over to her and asked if she smelled something odious. She responded she did not. Yet he persisted the odor was getting worse. He then took a good look at her. Her face was drenched in sweat. The day was kind of cold and she was perspiring like a garden hose with droplets coming out of every pore of her body. He leaned closer and he realized the odor was coming from her.

As she was recollecting this scene from so many years ago she heard her young voice trembling from near tears, "Honey, I can't stop sweating. My deodorant has failed and I think my monthly visitor has come unexpectedly.", which mad him realize that they couldn't go to the reception until this situation was corrected. She remembered him consoling her and trying to look as though he really knew what to do but he was young and inexperienced also. She remembered that he kept her away from everyone as he said he would meet them all at the reception. They got into the car and the odor was terrible, reeking, foul. He assured her that they would find a way to beat this. He drove to Macy's Department store as he told her he just got a credit card. Entering the women's fashion department they met an elderly sales lady who couldn't hide the fact that something really was stinking here. This old gnarled saleslady turned out to be the guardian angel they needed. The saleslady put her arm around her and asked her how she could help her but first tell her what was happening. She broke into tears as she related the story to the saleslady and the lady told the husband to sit a while and took her back into the dressing room.

When she emerged from the dressing room she had a great black outfit on and she smelled delightful , only of some deliciously light perfume and her monthly visitor was under control. The guardian angel explained she was young once and all young girls experience something that assails their confidence but now everything would be fine. They paid with the brand new credit card and threw her old clothes, including her underwear, into a refuse can as they left. When they arrived at the reception they were a little late but well received. She was seated next to the President's second wife after a recent messy divorce. It seems they were about the same age and hit it off real well. On top of that every executive tried to have a dance with her. The whole shebang was a success, nothing at all to worry about with thanks to their guardian angel.

Now some fifty years later she was much wiser AND older. She could laugh at it all now. She thought she better stop dilly-dallying and get her act together since she was meeting friends for lunch.  "When we were young we were silly, silly girls and I wouldn't change it for the world."

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Jesus/Lazarus/Martha & Mary

Chapter 11 verses 1-45 of the Gospel of St. John is all about the great miracle of "The Raising of Lazarus". This great miracle foreshadowed the Resurrection of Christ but there was a lot going on at the time on purely the human level. That is what I would like to explore.

This family of two sisters and a brother were great friends of Jesus. Mary was the one who bathed Jesus' feet with expensive oil and wiped them dry with her own hair. Jesus not only let her do this but risked quiet rebuke from those present and far away. At the time it was unseemly for a woman to publicly display such affection and for a man, especially a holy man, to accept such display of emotion. This was the beginning of a great bond between them and Jesus. Apparently Jesus visited their home many times and feasted there. He was very comfortable with them and they with him. The fact is that he showed up without announcement at least once and who knows how many more times with his whole retinue and they prepared a feast for them all. One time he gently admonished Martha for asking him to tell Mary to get off her butt and help prepare the feast. I bet Martha blushed with a little ire whenever she thought of that incident. But then I guess Jesus was a little partial towards Mary, especially because of the washing of his feet. Stuff like that goes a long way in cementing a human bond.

So you can imagine the reaction of his Disciples when he got notice from the sisters that they needed him because their brother was gravely ill and he was the only one who could save him, yet instead of immediately leaving as they were more than a few days away in travel time Jesus hung around for two more days. With all due respect his disciples weren't very bright lights in those days and they must of wondered what the hell was going on with him. Is he afraid since Bethany was less than two miles from Jerusalem it would be dangerous for him to go there as they had tried to stone him when he was last there. Others could of thought that he was sort of heartless. Three of his closest friends were in dire need of his presence and he's still hanging around here across the Jordan seemingly unconcerned. Finally, after two days he says to his disciples lets go back to Judea to help Lazarus. His friend's fear, ask him if he is in his right mind considering the dangers that await him to which he responded that living in fear is not the way to go. He said this in different terms but that is what he meant. He could of said put some starch in your spines for what is going to happen to all of us, instead he gently told them that Lazarus was dead metaphorically which they couldn't grasp then he just said it in plain terms. Finally Thomas, yeah that's right the doubter but in this case the courageous one, tells them he is ready to die with Jesus and so should they be. Not wanting to be cowards, especially Peter, agree to go. I bet Peter made sure his sword, the one that cut off the centurion's ear at Gethsemane, was by his side just in case.

Jesus finally gets there and Lazarus is dead, entombed four days which of course he knew since this was to be the time to show God's power in Jesus. His divine nature I am sure was calm but his human nature must of been boiling over with anticipation with how he was going to be greeted by his friends. Martha ran out to meet him. She told him that if he was here her brother wouldn't have died but rather than being accusatory she came right back with "But even now I know that whatever you ask of  god, God will give you." He then asked her if she believed in him and she affirmed that she did. He must of breathed a deep sigh of relief seeing his beloved friend accepting all of this without question. Then Mary came to him with a whole bunch of people behind her, professional weepers and all. She said the same thing , "..if you would have been here my brother would not have died."  This wasn't followed with the statement of faith like Martha, more like, "Where were you when we needed you?", or "If you were here then we wouldn't have this tragedy we now have.". My old translation said Jesus was deeply troubled, signifying a deep emotion like anger or indignation. He heard the mummers of the crowd, 'He cured the blind man. Couldn't he have done something?". So groaning in spirit Jesus wept. This is a true human emotion. What caused him to weep. Certainly, he saw the great anguish all about him which he knew he caused. He could have just willed Lazarus to be well yet it wouldn't have had the powerful effect leading people to his father. Yet? On top of all that except for Martha, he saw a lack of faith and distrust in him which had to hurt purely on a human level, especially the way Mary was affected by all this.
I am not sure if this is the only recorded time Jesus wept, perhaps when he moaned over Jerusalem's impending destruction and he said he would have cuddled her like a mother hen if only she would have listened to him. He loved Jerusalem. He loved Lazarus, Martha and Mary and in a sense he was causing them this hurt yet they hadn't listened to him, except Martha, that he was the light and the resurrection. So they came to the tomb amidst all this confusion, weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then he commanded that they remove the stone over the objections of the sisters who reminded him that after being dead for four days the stench of decay would be terrible. Suddenly, there was quiet. All eyes shifting back from Jesus towards the tomb's opening. Then Jesus prayed glorifying God for the crowds edification and then he called forth Lazarus. There must of been some time passing until finally Lazarus came out all bound up. The crowd must of been awe struck. The sisters now crying tears of happiness. Jesus said, "Untie him and let him go.". The Gospel goes on to what transpires at the Sanhedrin but I wonder what must of gone at Bethany. I could envision the sisters untieing Lazarus weeping with laughter and Jesus crying tears of happiness also. Then knowing Jesus and what always seemed to follow something great, the sisters had a great feast with good wine and meat and deserts. Plenty of laughter with Lazarus being questioned on what he remembers of the last days when he was dead or was he really asleep? Some I bet even believed it was all a set-up, a conspiracy. Mary was again at Jesus' feet. Martha was again serving but this time she had plenty of help from those who were true friends and the celebration went on for hours, maybe days. After all the bridegroom was still with them.

There is no more mention of this family in the Bible. I am sure they were followers of "The Way" and lived under the sign of the fish after Christ's resurrection. They eventually died as we all must. But their lives were changed from the moment they met Jesus and knew him not only as divine but truly human. They knew his smell, his laugh, his tears his hopes and aspirations. Of course they were his followers but first and foremost they were his friends.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Nobody Asked Me But;

Why is it I haven't heard or read any outcries of disgust and horror at the reaction of those Muslims over the burning of the Koran? Nothing really from the world of Islam nor the rest of the world. Can it be that those loonies have really captured the courage of the whole world? Shouldn't someone say something about the taking of human life over the burning of what is really pieces of paper? I am sure they would if this happened over the burning of the Bible!

Donald Trump has apparently grabbed onto what is circulating on the net, that Pres. Obama was born in Kenya and they have the birth certificate to prove it and Obama has spent millions to keep it quiet. Just heard him on "Morning Joe" claiming this needs to be looked into and he thinks that Obama is an illegal President. If this is so and there is proof why hasn't the Congress started Impeachment? The Tea Party and the Republicans have stated their main purpose is to keep this a one term Presidency they could make it even less. Couldn't they? OR Are they more afraid of a Biden Presidency?  I think they are all nuts. But this keeps Trump's TV shows well rated. He of course is crazy like a fox. He of course has no interest except self-interest. Hypocrite!

I think President Obama is the most dis-respected President ever. He is attacked as a non-citizen who has broken the law to gain the Presidency. Which makes him a bigger crook than Nixon who really was a crook. They claimed he was a radical Christen who hated whites following his activist Pastor. Then they claimed he is a radical Muslim who wants to institute socialism and Muslim law. How can one be both things at the same time? Now that is a conundrum, isn't it? Unfortunately middle America didn't like his color and name. They weren't ready for a black President and they still are not. They'd welcome white supremacy!

Watching "Real Time", Bill Maher's show you get to learn some things, e.g.; He likes to refer to Tea Party members as "Tea Baggers" which he explained to the uninitiated such as me, refers to the person who drags their testicles over the face of another person, gay or straight. Now I have been around awhile, more than awhile, and I never heard that but it sounds right. For Tea Party Members "Tea Baggers" seems apropos.
And they said TV was not instructional.

Saw the first episode of "The Borgia's" and thought it was terrific. I am surprised that the voice of the Catholic Church, what IS that Irish guy's name (?), hasn't stared yelling "DISCRIMINATION", despite historical evidence. However, I should point out all we would have is a person yelling stupid things, no riots or murders. Hey, didn't I open this Blog with this type of thing?

What the hell are we doing in Libya? This is becoming to look like Afghanistan when we supplied the Taliban against the Russians only to have them bite us in the ass many years later with our own weapons.

Why do we always talk of cuts when we have to cut the deficit? Whatever happened to generating revenue? Like increasing tax on the wealthiest! Making Corporations pay some of their fair share to the country that generates most of their income! Nah! Let's cut Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, wipe out unions so we can have a really small middle class and get those BAD, BAD, people like teachers under our thumbs so our misfit children can really run amok! Now that makes sense. I am joining the Tea Party so I can be a Tea Bagger. OOPS, I forgot about Bill Maher's definition.

Why do some people smell so badly? Yeah, I know that as you age odors seem to escape from every orifice and pore from your body but this isn't something I've noticed about only the old. The young, say teenagers and up have forgotten what it is to keep themselves clean and nice smelling. Heard some mid-twenties talk about brushing their teeth twice a day. Really? Even after eating onions? And some of the women? Splashing heavily scented perfume doesn't really make you smell sweet it just makes you smell. A shower once or twice a day, especially in the summer, with some talcum powder would be nice. The old timers and some of the young should find a private place to emit the foul smelling gases that may build up during the day.

Friday, April 1, 2011

A Drive To Destiny

His body was aching enough to make him realize he was four score and ten. His back had always been his Achilles tendon so to speak although it was a bit higher up on his body But he hadn't experienced this type of problems for years. He had found a Chiropractor who was supposed to have magical hands and he was on his way to meet her for the first time. As he struggled to get into his car he thought that perhaps she wouldn't want to treat an old timer who was so advanced in age for fear that his bones might break. His bones were strong and except for his fragile disks there was nothing wrong with the skeletal part of his frame. He backed into the drivers seat since his knees couldn't take the strain of getting in the normal way. He pulled the seat belt around him as he started the car and the thought crept into his mind that many were suggesting he shouldn't drive any more. What the hell, he thought, my reflexes are as good as a person some fifty years my junior so what is every body afraid of? He Googled the directions and he was sort of surprised that they followed a road that he hadn't been on for many years but there were many spots on that particular road that held meaning for him. He pulled on to the Expressway cutting off anyone in his way. "What the hell!", he thought "The sign says merge doesn't it?" He took it for a few exits and got off at this road, one that contained many memories but one that he hadn't traveled for many years.

He noticed a hobby store to his right. He continued to go as he turned his head to look while he was driving. He remembered that when his wife was in the middle stages of Alzheimer's he took her in there. She had artistic talent and he thought if he brought her some pads and pencils and books she'd be able to draw. But she was too far gone even then for her to anything but scribble. A loud horn blast awakened him from his reverie and he had to swerve not to get into the left lane which was loaded with traffic. "Screw you. jerk! These guys don't know how to drive!" As he went a little further he noticed to his left an electro imaging place. "Oh, yeah", he thought, "this is the place she had to go for MRI's when she was first diagnosed. In the beginning she had no fear of the enclosure but later she had to have an open MRI or else she'd freak out. He wanted to help he so badly but really couldn't do anything as the disease progressed. An angry blast from an oncoming truck shook him back to the present and the driver shouted obscenities at him as he again swerved from oncoming traffic cutting off drivers on either side of him. Just a little further he saw the Pizza Hut they'd go to after the MRI's and he remembered the food that seemed to comfort them as they ate and grew fatter while they tried to forget the reasons they were there.

"Holy Mackerel!" he thought as he passed a road that cut a cross the thoroughfare he was on. He turned his head to look up the block and confirmed the fact that the hall one of his son's wedding reception was held. "How many years ago was that?", he thought. This was way before his wife was diagnosed with AD and everyone was much younger although at the time he thought he was getting older. He remembered dancing with his wife in their happiness that his son was entering a state which they enjoyed. The Merengue, Lindy and best of all a slow Fox Trot where he could hold her close and enjoy the warmth and softness of her body.

Once again he was awakened by blasts of horns from the crossing street. "Oh, shit! I just ran a light!". This time he couldn't blame anyone but himself.

He passed a road that brought him back some fifty-five years ago when he and a friend went to a wedding reception. They had no car and the buses stopped running at eleven-thirty. They enjoyed themselves so much that they missed the bus and they really didn't have the gumption to ask for a lift especially since they met some girls who they were trying to impress. So they walked through some very dark roads for about five miles until they got hitch when they approached the main drag. He remembered all the dogs that were barking and the darkness of the night and the fact that they had a little buzz on. His friend had recently died of cancer. He remembered they both had a full head of hair combed with a great pompadour. The years were not kind to either of them as it robbed them of what was once considered their crowning glory which now became their crowning pate. He remembered the girl he was supposed to call which he never did was said to be pregnant which in those days was a no-no and he was glad he never called her for who knows if he could've been blamed. Another loud blast from a horn and epitaphs shouted in his direction brought back to reality. "Boy are there cranks on the road today.". "Whatever happened to gentility?". He knew he was getting near to his destination where he was to make a right on the road which sounded so familiar to him but then , of course, how could he forget?

There was a great lounge he used to go to that was on this road which had a great singing waiter who sounded like Al Jolson and a bartender who played guitar. While he was trying to woo his wife he brought her there many times but one stood out clearly in his memory even though it occurred fifty-six years ago. He began to visualize this great time, "Al brought us our drinks and then told us (for my dates sake) that a gypsy had just left this very booth and sprinkled a magical love dust, potion, and whoever sat in this booth next would fall in love and get married.", Al used this line on many dates and the guys loved it and a lot of girls believed it but his wife laughed and spotted it as a come-on for whatever might be in his mind to follow. Then only trouble was he was really in love with her and she wasn't with him and he wanted her to be. Thet kept thinking of that many years after they were married they laughed about this youthful try at spinning a love story that is until she had no memory at all.

He was half awake when he turned on that very street and lost control of the car slamming into a massive tree. There were no more memories, only blackness!