Venturing Out Of The Dark 6142

Blake and I took a drive around the county after taking the girls to school. The Golden State Killer was still on her mind after watching a special on the sick asshole last night. “He was also lucky not to have been caught,” Blake said. “Yes, I just wish no one ever heard of that asshole’s name. It’s been well over forty years since Ted Bundy entered the public’s consciousness and that piece of shit is still very much embedded in our collective psyche. I read that more movies are coming out about that shithead and that women find the monster good-looking. I know those young women are far removed from when he was on his killing spree, but it’s still disgusting that they would find anything about him attractive.” “Scott Peterson gets love letters,” Blake replied. “I know, so does Susan Smith, so it’s not just woman, men are just as kooky,” I added.

Blake then asked me if I recall anything about the Golden State Killer when I was out in California.

I thought about it but didn’t recall any discussion about the asshole. I was in Southern California, and I know that he started in the northern part of the state before working his way down. I don’t believe he had started raping and killing in that part of the state while I was there, but I could be wrong. “I was young, Maggs was young, and Moriath and Joseph were self-absorbed in their lives. Do you remember anything about the BTK Strangler,” I then asked Blake. “Wow, that’s right, he was in Wichita. I remember the new reporting on his last couple of murders, which were about five or six years apart. I only remember that because a few people in town thought that Regina Tolson might have been a BTK victim,” my wife said somberly. “People are detached from these monsters because they haven’t been victimized by them, but there is nothing special about them except their desire to kill. I don’t want to know the names of cowardly serial killers while not knowing the names of people who do heroic things every day without any notice. Of course, people are fascinated by horrific bullshit, and all those serial killer scumbags certainly fit that bill,” I said.

Blake then let out a laugh.

“You’re right, Elmer, and I’m guilty of being too wrapped up in serial killers, and I know better,” she said. “All those women Bundy killed had loved ones who miss them, the same goes for all murder victims. I know what bad folks do, so it’s best to steer clear of them and not give them any kind of attention.”

There are now several channels on television dedicated to nothing but horrific crimes. Every show on them has a large following that keeps up with the mayhem on a daily basis. Over the holidays, I saw some ads for these shows and shook my head. “Merry Murderous Christmas” “Let The Slay Bells Ring.” and my favorite: “St. Nick Has a Bone To Pick With You,” which old Santa wearing a sinister look while holding a pickaxe. I understand that humans have an inherent fascination with the dark side, but damn, let’s allow the light to shine through and celebrate the good people of the world.

Venture out of the dark and be happy.

Published in: on February 19, 2019 at 5:28 am  Leave a Comment  
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The Long Fall Down 6141

I read the review of Rory’s show in Bossier City last night, which apparently was a wild one, and a concert filled with an electric atmosphere. The author of the review said that he was initially worried that it would be a violent bloodfest, but his fears were quickly allayed when Rory took the stage to applause and had fun with the crowd. He then commented at length on Rory’s jaw-dropping bass skills. “Seeing such musicianship live is always a treat, especially in this era of music where being able to play doesn’t seem to be in style, and that is why so many of today’s concerts are sterile and boring affairs; there is no human connection,” the reviewer wrote, which I applauded. The glowing critique of his show made me smile, and the critic also said some nice words about the Rattlers, who opened the show., calling them an intelligent, hard rock outfit.

After reading the review, I checked on the goings-on back in McSwain, which I normally do once a week. I was taken aback by the headline about a local attorney who was arrested for embezzlement last night. I saw the picture of Ronald Ploney, a lawyer who deals only in civil matters, smiling. The pic was from his business and undoubtedly not representative of how he feels now. I read on, and the article described how Ploney bilked several clients out of hundreds of thousands of dollars. I shook my head and then thought about the little prick for a few moments.

Born into a wealthy family who let it be known they were all white-collar professionals who were better than the common-folk of McSwain, the Ploneys are not a well-liked family anywhere in the county. Starting with Henry Ploney and continuing with his three miserable sons, Jacob, Matthew, and Ronald, the clan arrogance borders almost on comical. Jacob and Matthew are doctors while Ronald became an attorney, which his son followed him into the profession. Henry Ploney, also an attorney, was delighted that his grandson followed in his path, which resulted in the boy being showered with attention, money, and anything else he wanted. Ronald became a lawyer, but he lacked the discipline and drive that his father and grandfather possessed, and therefore, his practice never flourished like it should have. Blake walked into the room and asked what I was reading. I told her about Ploney, and she asked me how well I knew him. “He’s about ten years younger than me, but I know him well enough to know he’s a prick. Everything was given to him, and so he thought he should have everything. I’ve heard rumors that he and his wife were on the outs and that he was having a hard time paying for his kids whims. If someone had put a boot up his ass when he was younger, maybe none of this would be happening now, but hell, there’s other problems with that family.” “You think he’ll pull any time,” Blake asked. “Probably not, it’s his first offense, and his family will bail him out, but Ronald’s run is over,” I replied.

I then thought about Rory.

Ronald Ploney had every advantage in life and still fucked it up because he was never taught that there are consequences for bullshit. All of the best schools, material things, and proper lineage has gotten him busted for embezzlement. Meanwhile, Rory, who grew up with nothing, is now a millionaire. Now, Rory musical ability saved his ass; however, he was on the wrong path before we got steered him right. The most important thing Rory did was listen to good advice and admit he needed help. Rory also appreciated the sense of family we have given him, which has allowed him to grow more secure in himself. One man took his good fortune for granted while the other built upon his talent and cherishes every day as an opportunity to accomplish more and do great things.

Ronald is about to discover that the farther you fall, the more it hurts.

Published in: on February 18, 2019 at 7:33 am  Leave a Comment  
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The Accidental Horseman 6140

I decided to prepare breakfast on the grill outside, which would allow me to get some fresh air and keep from smoking up the house. Cary saw me and came out to help. I told him I was making french toast and that he could fry up the bacon. We worked in unison, and the process went smoothly.

Then, Francesca came over to help.

Running toward us with everything she had, my granddaughter was full of smiles and ready to help any way she could, I picked her up and told her that we were having french toast for breakfast. “Is it yummy,” she asked. “I think so.” “Good.”  I Put her down, and Robin took her hand while we cooked.

I then realized I needed more bread, bacon, and everything.

It didn’t take long for everyone on the farm to show up. Cary and I cooked up the food, and then we went inside to chow down. The kids loved the french toast and bacon. Carley, who spent the night with the girls, ate a slice of french toast, some bacon, and a small bowl of grits flavored by sugar-free syrup. She told us that diabetes is a hassle, but that you get used to not being able to eat certain things. “It could be worse,” she added. “I told her that was the attitude to have.

While cleaning up from breakfast, I got a call from Atkinson Farms in Burgaw, who said that my horse was about five minutes away. “Gabe appreciates your cooperation in this matter,” Betty said. “Does he like the Salerno?” “He loves it, so we’re all happy.”

I then saw the trailer pull up.

Teresa stopped the driver, and he parked the truck. I walked outside and called Dr. Dave, who said he was on his way. The driver then opened the trailer that held a beautiful Appaloosa mare with leopard spots. She was hesitant to come out at first, but I guided her out without incident. The two-year-old mare let out a snort, and I named her Dulcinea. “Teresa then took her to the field while the rest of the family admired her beauty. “She’s gorgeous,” my wife remarked.  “She is that,” I agreed. “Can she be ridden yet,” Carley asked. “No, she’s too young.” “I’m outta here,” the driver said, and I thanked him with some cash, which he appreciated.

As we watched Dulcinea run in the field, I thought about Sundays of decades ago when Sam Dowdy would let me ride his horses. It didn’t take long for me to get his stables in order and for him to be proud of his animals. I could ride for hours through the woods that surrounded his house and often times I would crash in the garage near the stables. I didn’t grow up around horses and have no formal training as to how to handle them, I just have a natural affinity with them. “Why you’re an accidental horseman, Scragg, ’cause I know you ain’t got no training, but goddamn, boy, you sure can work those beasts,” Sam told me. Now, all these years later, I have my own horse farm.

Accidental horseman–I like that.

Published in: on February 17, 2019 at 5:03 am  Leave a Comment  
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The Fruits Of A Simple Man 6139

Blake wanted to get away for the day, so we got the kids, picked up her mother and headed to Smithfield to the outlets, which wasn’t my idea of a fun day, but Blake was all for it when I suggested it.

It was a smooth trip up there; however, the second I go onto 95, Elizabeth began to plead that she was starving. Since it was a fun day, or at least for the girls, I suggested a fun meal. “What would that be,” Blake asked. “How about pizza,” I said. The ladies were for it, Elizabeth and Amy were all smiles, so I pulled into CiCi’s, which serves up a buffet pizza at a reasonable price. We all piled our plates high and chowed down, but only after we all ate a salad, which I didn’t make the girls eat; a sign that our hard work of introducing them to veggies at a young age is working as planned. I’ll admit that the pizza is far from gourmet, but gourmet pizza seems a tad ridiculous to me. It’s like the gourmet burgers and high-end sausages–come on now, it’s the mystery of not knowing what the fuck you’re eating that makes it good.

After dinner, we headed to the outlets where Blake and the girls hit the shoe stores while I sat on a bench and relaxed. After going to a couple of stores, we moved down the outlet where they shopped at women’s clothing stores. Both Blake and Bambi got a few things as did the girls. After looking around Caroline Pottery for a spell, we headed home.

On the way home right off 701, there’s a western store that was having a sale, so we decided to take a look. My luck was good as I found a pair of cowboy boots marked down sixty percent and I got them for a hundred bucks. I also picked up some work boots for fifty dollars, which made me a happy camper. Blake rolled her eyes but admitted I got a good deal.

We arrived back on the farm after five, which meant we had to think about supper. I decided burgers on the grill would suffice. I made the patties and put them on the fire while I examined my new boots.

I like the simple things in life.

If I had to sit in an office all day to live this kind of life, then I would be screwed because I couldn’t do it. Being able to move about and use my creativity for income allows me to branch out and remain the simple man I am. I know Blake and the girls think I’m a bumpkin at times, but that’s okay, I am a bumpkin who likes things simple. My life ain’t simple anymore, but I keep it so as much as I can. I looked around my property and shook my head.

Not bad for a drunken bumpkin who seemed head for oblivion not all that long ago.

Published in: on February 16, 2019 at 7:43 am  Leave a Comment  
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Anything Is Possible When You Show Up 6138

Paul Palinski showed up to the gig without the Paupers, which I thought strange. I asked him if everything was okay and he smiled and said that his band quit. “I told them this could be our break, but they couldn’t handle it any longer, so they headed back to Illinois this morning. I was going to join them, but something told me that if I show up something good might happen,” Paul said. “Like what,” I asked. “Well, I got to meet the Scragg Man.” “Okay, I guess that is something.” “It is, Sir, you’re the biggest thing there is,” “I don’t know about that, but my concern is what you’re going to play tonight.” “You want me to go solo?” “You showed up.” “Okay, I’m game, let me grab a guitar,” Paul said.

This ought to be interesting.

Kirby, Fergus, Garland, and Beck came down to catch and also wondered how Paul was going to pull this off. “It could end up being a fun night,” Beck said.

I then saw Paul talking with Sam Druckenwald.

I laughed when I saw Paul walk over to me. “Scragg, this young man has agreed to play drums for me, which will be a big help. See, I came down and met another rock star,” Paul declared. “Damn, are you comparing me to Scragg,” Sam asked. “Fuck no, but your music plays on the radio, and you’re one cool cat,” Paul replied. Sam laughed and asked where the drum kit was.

I walked upstairs where Blake, Brie, Kevin, Davan, Brooke, Brandi, and Celia were relaxing. Caroline and Dave joined us shortly afterward, and we waited for the show to start. “I hope this doesn’t devolve into madness,” my wife said in a threatening tone. “How could that happen,” I asked. “All the ingredients are here for that to occur, Elmer.”

Paul and Sam then took the stage.

Paul explained that his band quit on him, but that he came anyway to entertain the crowd. “I got Sam Druckenwald to play drums for me, but we’re doing this on the fly, so bear with us,” Paul pleaded.

And with that, the two-man band tore into “Escaped Mental Patients” a song about what the title says. Unencumbered by political correctness, the wacky number tells the story of a bunch of mental patients running amok in the city. Some may find the tune offensive–okay, most will, but that doesn’t mean that it lacks its moments. “Well, that was lovely, ” Blake sneered. “Coochie Mama” followed and was also a tad on the crude side, but again, the composition did have some funny lyrics. “My Brother is an Interior Decorator” a hilarious song about a hyper-sensitive gay guy that Rory would have gotten a kick out of. The companion tune followed, “My Sister wear Flannel Shirts and Pumps Iron” which made the joint laugh out loud. “Elmer, this is insane,” Blake hollered. “These guys are great,” I informed her. “Elmer!” “My Ex Stole my New Girlfriend” came next and kept with the gay/lesbian theme played for laughs. “Her tongue is a helluva lot better than yours, dick, so grab your shit and get lost,” Paul said with gusto. “Hey, I Can See my Proctologists Hands,” was the next classy number Paul sang, which made the club howl. “Elmer, this is juvenile,” Blake sneered. “Yeah, isn’t it great,” I replied. “Elmer!”

“Whack It” “Drunk as a Skunk” “A Piss Poor Excuse for a Hangover” Too Much Talk, Not Enough Cocaine” “My Dog Chewed Up my Inflatable Doll” “Bar S Dogs” and “I Thought I Love You, and then You Opened Your Mouth” came afterward, and they all were funny and lacked in message. Despite her early protests, Blake finally admitted that Paul and Sam made a good duo and that she admired Paul’s cajones. Paul had run out of songs but was still onstage telling jokes.

A few minutes later, Garland and Kirby joined him, which kept the party going. Paul said he knew some songs, but admitted that they were old classics. “You know “Cheap Booze,” Kirby said, playing one of the Ugly Guys classic songs. Paul smiled, and they tore into the tune. They then had a blast with “Friday Night Party” “Gimme Whatcha Got” “Exhaust” and other tunes from the Mingo Oak and Ugoy Guys catalog. The joint was rocking, and everyone was having a grand time.

During a break, Paul signed autographs and chatted patrons, who were mostly college kids. With a strong voice and indomitable spirit, Paul Palinski’s name will be known because I know there is some great music in him. He didn’t sing any of his songs that he would have because he had play this show on the fly and keep it light, but I can already see him doing well.

And his show tonight is a lesson for us all, and that is, never give up and forge ahead even if things look bleak. I remember someone telling me that ninety percent of life is showing up.

And with the crew we have down here, the other ten percent is easily made up.



Published in: on February 16, 2019 at 3:13 am  Leave a Comment  
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In It Until The End 6137

Cullen stopped over the house in the morning to hand me a copy of the 3 Ugly Guys live album, “Hideous in Santa Barbara: LIVE,” which made me laugh. They tore it up that July night,” Cullen said. I put the disc in the player and sure enough, Randy, Lowell, and Sam were greeted warmly in the Santa Barbara Bowl and opened up the set with a killer version of “Chainsaw Love” Cullen then asked me about the show tonight at Gowans. I pulled up the video from Paul Palinski and the Paupers, and he watched it while I listened to the Ugly Guys. “Damn, they’re good, it sounds like a great show, I’ll be there,” the Sorcerer said.

I knew something else was on my buddy’s mind.

“What else has gotten under your skin,” I asked him. “Aah, it’s Amanda, she just doesn’t get what it takes to make it in this business, Scragg.” “That’s because she doesn’t have what it takes to be a live performer, Cullen, and you know it. Amanda is a great player, and I imagine she’ll do very nicely as a session musician, but that is where her future lies,” I replied. “That’s it wise sage?” “What else do you want me to say?” “Damn, more than that.”

I called in Blake and asked her to give Cullen her assessment of Amanda.

“She’s a terrific musician like her father, but she’s not her father and has a lot of issues that need to be worked out, which isn’t going to happen in a day, month, or year. You’re in this for the rest of your life, but that’s okay, Cullen because Amanda loves you, so consider yourself blessed because no one else thinks that highly of your fucking ass,” Blake sneered.

I might have left off the ending statement, but Blake didn’t, so perhaps it was necessary.

Cullen shook his head while Blake beamed with self-satisfaction. “You’re in this as long as you’re here on earth, dickhead, so get used to not getting your way. Amanda will be alright; she’ll find what she wants to do, but you’re going to need to let her do that without being an asshole,” Blake continued. “Anything else,” Cullen curtly asked. “Oh, I could go for hours about how big an asshole you are and what you need to do to change your fucked up ways, but I have things to do today, so get a grip and act like you have some fucking sense. We all know you’re a lost cause, but you are a good actor,” Blake sneered before walking out the door.

“Well, I guess she got that off her chest, and it undoubtedly felt good for her to tear me down like that,” Cullen said. “She’s right, you also know that, don’t you?” “Yes, Scragg, so go ahead and laugh at me.” “No, I know all too well what you’re going through, so I’ll refrain and just be thankful that it’s you right now because tomorrow it could be me–shit, sometime today it could be me.”

Cullen has finally found something that he can’t master, fix to his liking, or stomp the shit out of to get what he wants. He’s learning that he doesn’t know much and is helpless much of the time. The biggest thing he’s learning, or what he now knows is what Blake reminded him with such grace and sensitivity: he’s in this as long as he’s here on earth.

And even during the times of frustration and helplessness, that should give him comfort.


Published in: on February 15, 2019 at 3:41 am  Leave a Comment  
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If You Can Swing, It Don’t Mean A Thing 6136

I read some glowing reviews of Donald Walford’s shows throughout the south, which has given his album a leg up because it’s going to be released this Friday. Amber said she’s releasing it because of the public demand, which is what I wanted to hear.

Who says you have to be young and pretty to create a public stir?

As I was telling Blake about the terrific reviews, E. Jr. stopped over and said that I needed to look at a band. “I thought we were going easy on that for a spell,” I replied. “Take a look at this band,” he said before turning on his tablet, which showed a group of older guys taking the stage. “Hello, we’re Paul Palinski and the Paupers from DeKalb, Illinois, and we’re here to rock you out,” the frontman said, who I’m assuming is Paul Palinski. He counted down from three, and then the band tore into a song called, “Get Movin” a rollicking rocker in the style of the early sixties, but a whole lot harder. The band is tight, and their musicianship is first-rate. They then performed, Leadfoot” another raucous tune that they knocked out of the park. “”Ain’t Gonna Cry” and “Drunk and Stupid” kept the festivities going at the joint where they were laying to the delight of the crowd. Paul’s strong vocals and solid harp playing added to the band stellar sound that included a hotshot guitarist and kickass drummer and bassist. “Man, they sure can play and entertain a crowd. I take it all those songs are originals,” I asked E. Jr. “Yes, they were all written by members of the band.” “Are there any more songs?” “No, but I got them a gig at Gowan’s on Friday, which will take them some out of their way, but they know what it means.” I’ve seen other performances, Scragg, but they had profanity from the crowd, and they weren’t the best quality, so I told them to take them down and replace them with better sounding vids,” E. Jr.” “Okay, let’s see what happens,” I replied. I looked at Blake, who said that she liked the way they played. “They’re older, but that’s supposedly just a number,” E. Jr. then said. “How old are they?” Paul just turned 60, the guitarist, Jim Banasek is 59. The bassist, Steve Krinsley is 62. I don’t know the name of the drummer because he’s never been mentioned, but he looks about 60,” E. Jr. replied. “What’s the story behind them?” “They all lost their jobs; Paul and Jim worked at a meat packing plant in DeKalb. Steve lost his job in Sycamore, which I guess is by DeKalb.” “Why hasn’t the drummer been mentioned,” I asked. “I don’t know, I’ve just talked to Paul, Scragg.” “Okay, we can find out tomorrow.” “Oh yeah, Scragg, Donald Walford alerted me to these guys,” Jr. added. “Cool, he’s sure doing well.”

Blake and I did some shopping and then headed back to the farm. We talked about Paul Palinski and the Paupers, and we both agreed that it’s a likable band with a fantastic sound. Blake then made mention of their ages. “That Donald Walford is older and some of the other bands on the label have older members. I think it’s wonderful because they sound better than the young bands,” my wife added. “They’ve been playing longer,” I replied. “Exactly, and they have more depth and feeling” “That’s right, but it’s not always an easy sell,” I replied. “It hasn’t stopped anyone on this label,” Blake countered. “You’re right, it hasn’t.” “Is it even an issue, Elmer?” “I don’t believe it is because I never hear Amber of E. Sr. talk about it.” “Maybe your label is setting a new trend,” Blake then remarked.

If you can play then who cares how old you are. If you can bring the folks out then what’s the big deal about age? Age may be a tad more than a number, but if you can swing, it don’t mean a thing.

And I’ve seen more youngsters broken down than old fogeys.

Published in: on February 14, 2019 at 7:14 am  Leave a Comment  
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Lack Of Gumption 6135

I was halfheartedly watching television when a program came on about the state of education in this country. Naturally, I expected a disaster, but I watched it anyway. The host, a bespectacled man named John Harrison, a former college professor who now spends his time stirring up shit concerning education, went out and about to test young people’s knowledge of literature. He started in New York, and I watched with curiosity.

It didn’t take long for me to get pissed.

He asked a young man a question which went like this: “Who wrote the play, As You Like It. I expected the idiot to say Shakespeare, but when he said Woody Allen, I almost screamed. Harrison then asked a young lady who wrote, For Whom the Bell Tolls Again, Hemingway should have come out of her mouth instantly, but instead, she shrugged and said she had no idea. The young and dumb waste case was asked who created Sherlock Holmes, and the scraggly creature with a ragged goatee said he didn’t know. Harrison then got a group of youngsters and began asking them various questions pertaining to literature with grim results. Some of the assholes used the PC card to get out of questions like if they read Huckleberry Finn, which some of them said was racist because it had the word ‘nigger’ in it. Harrison reminded them that it was an anti-slavery classic, but they gave him a blank stare. Some of the young ladies said that most classic literature is sexist while many of the young men say that it’s antiquated and racist. They’re all fucked up and lazy to boot, but I digress, the show so distressed me that Blake came in to check on me. “These idiots don’t know anything about literature. “Is this the John Harrison Show,” Blake asked. “I guess, that’s his name.” “He’s pretty new, but I would recommend you not watch him too often because he really let’s then system have it,” Blake said. “This is disgusting, Blake,” I said in despair. “I know, Elmer, you should have seen the episode on math,” Blake replied. “I can only imagine.” “Then there was the one on the American Civil War, which most of the kids know little about now,” Blake said. “Okay, I’ve heard enough, this is bumming me out.”

What the fuck?

It seems that the United States continues to lose ground in education to other developed nations, which place a higher premium on it, but don’t waste the kind of money we do trying to educate kids who seemingly don’t want to learn. I then considered the source of my consternation and realized that shows such as that are made to get the kind of emotions that I’m showing now. I know the education system in this country is broken, but shows like this only serve to exacerbate the problem because they don’t offer any sensible solutions,” I said. “Right, Elmer, a well run and productive education system would cancel the John Harrison Show,” Blake replied. “and it requires more than just anger and money to solve the problem, it needs parents to do that, and we know how hard it is to get them to do anything. Unfortunately, there is no magic formula,” my wife added. “You’re right, I’m just concerned about our babies futures,” I said. “I am, too, Elmer, but as you say, it’s going to to take some gumption and iron will to cure what ails us. The good thing is, that’ll do it. The bad news, gumption, and iron wills are in short supply, especially in our elected leaders,” Blake commented.

The lack of gumption has been a problem for years in this country, and its devastating effects are everywhere from the broken families to the course culture to the abandonment of true art for momentary gratification. Blake is correct when she said that what ails us has a simple solution.

But it’s mighty hard to get a bunch of drones off their fat asses to do something besides look out for themselves while the country falls apart.

Published in: on February 13, 2019 at 7:23 am  Leave a Comment  
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The High Cost Of Doing Your Own Thing 6134

After picking up Amy from preschool, I drove to the Captain’s Catch, a new seafood joint that looked good on television. We walked into the restaurant, and I ordered a catfish po’ boy, which is a piece of fried catfish served on a sub roll with coleslaw, tartar sauce, and whatever else you want on it. My wife grimaced and ordered the shrimp basket as did Amy. We then took a seat and relaxed among the folks.

I was scanning the interior of the restaurant when a short, chubby man walked over to me. “Checking out the competition,” he asked. I looked up and saw Bill Bryant, a former cook for Radisson in town who also helped out at the Happy Hog for a spell. “Bill, it’s been a while,” I replied while shaking his hand. “Yes, it has been, Scragg, how you doing?” “Good as ever.” “I’ve heard that.” “When did you open this place up,” I asked. “About a month ago, it’s doing pretty well.” “Excellent.” I introduced Bill to Blake and Amy, and the old cook greeted them warmly. “I remember seeing you with Scragg, but this pretty little girl I haven’t seen,” Bill said. Before we could chat some more, he got called to the kitchen.

Our food came shortly afterward, and I couldn’t have been happier with mine. Blake and Amy also said their meals were delicious. Everything was fried up fresh, and the sides were equally well-prepared. “It looks like Bill had a winner here,” I told Blake, who agreed.

It takes guts to start a business because everything falls on you and there is no safety net, but without people doing just that, this country would be in a real pickle. Besides capital, you need patience, a sense of humor, the ability to see beyond today, nerves of steel, and the satisfaction of building something from the ground up. Business ownership ain’t for everyone, and that’s okay, too. Oh yeah, having the moxie of a gambler also helps.  Bill probably sunk most of what he had into this business and if it doesn’t work out then he’s just out of luck–and his money, without any recourse.

It takes a pair to open a business–especially a restaurant.

I spoke to Bill before we left and we chatted until he was called to the kitchen again. On the way back to the farm I told Blake that I’m happy for Bill and that I hope his business takes off. “He always wanted to do his own thing, so now he has that opportunity,” I said. “I know it’s rough, but I think he’ll make it,” Blake replied. “I do, too, Bill has his stuff together.”

Then again, Bill could go under in a few months, which I pray doesn’t happen. There’s a high cost for doing your own thing, which ends up being too steep for seventy-five percent of new businesses.

Oh well, the catfish po’ boy was delicious.

Published in: on February 12, 2019 at 7:17 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Pain In Vain 6133

While finishing up my chores on the farm, I looked over at Maire’s house and saw that Maggs car wasn’t there, which wasn’t surprising after yesterday’s blowout with Maire; however, knowing her, I’m more than just a tad concerned about this escalating.

Maggs easygoing nature and quick smile belie an equally quick temper that can turn ugly when she holds a grudge. I’ve seen her do battle with Moriath with frightening ferocity. I realize that I wasn’t there and don’t know the whole picture, but that was because I was chased out under the threat of physical violence and jail by Moriath. I’m not saying I would have made a difference, but I’m also not going to say that I wouldn’t have. The one thing I do know is that the shit from California ain’t coming here to throw the children’s lives in upheaval. I rather suspect Cary also won’t put up with it.

I then walked over to my SoCal daughter’s house.

Maire smiled and let me in. We took a seat and discussed yesterday’s events. “I told Cary, who was upset and said that it better never happen again. I told him that I shouldn’t have engaged her in it because it’s irrelevant now. I know we let out some profanity that was uncalled for.” “Yes, you did, which concerns and angers me because little Cary was subjected to it.” I know, Daddy, that was wrong.” “You moved down here to get away from that nonsense, so let’s not have a relapse. What happened in the past is history, which means there is nothing you can do about it except learn from it, but if you ever noticed, it’s the past, something no one can change, that causes most of the problems in families. What’s done is done, sweetie, and although you were justified in being angry with your mother, that anger is pointless now because you’re an adult. Is there anything I don’t know about?” “No, Daddy, Mom was desperately trying to become a director and overlooked a lot of bullshit by those in positions of power to get her dream. I’m not saying she witnessed any of the sleazy shit, but she knew what was going on and forged ahead. She also spent too much time away from home, which made me feel like I was in the way. Mom would then come home tired and pissed off, which always led to a fight, which meant that we didn’t see a lot of each other during my later teen years.” “Which is why you got away with what you did,” I added. “True, Mom was oblivious to just about everything.” “I’m not saying to forgive and forget, well actually I kinda am, but why don’t you move forward. The future is unwritten, so it doesn’t have to be like this with your mother. I’m just saying,” I told my daughter. “I know, Daddy.”

Cary then came running out into my arms.

While I was playing with my grandson, Maire asked me where that quote came from.”What quote,” I replied. “The future is unwritten.” “Oh, Joe Strummer.” “Who?” “Joe Strummer, the rhythm guitarist and lead vocalist for the Clash.” “The rock group?” “Yeah, that’s him, or was him, he passed away a while back.” “I thought it was someone more, anyway, that’s good,” Maire said. “More profound,” I asked. “Maybe.” “Ol’ Joe was pretty profound, and besides, it doesn’t matter who said the quote, it’s the quote itself,” I said. “That’s true.” “And what you and your mother are doing is merely pain in vain.” “Wait a minute, that’s a play on words,” Maire replied. “What?” “Train in Vain” was a Clash song,” Maire said. “Right, but it was written by Mick Jones, not Joe Strummer.” “Okay, Daddy,” Maire replied with a laugh.

Hopefully, I got my point across.

Published in: on February 12, 2019 at 4:17 am  Leave a Comment  
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