Category: People


This is Patrick.

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That’s okay, we can both be Batman.

We met just this once and had a laugh. While walking around Seattle We saw this wall mural of a jackass that was similar to the art of badass coffee company on state street in Salt Lake City.  We first saw it across the street en route to the space needle. Ruth pointed it out and asked if I wanted a picture of it. I said “Kind of, but not right now we will get it on the way back if we walk back this way.” as it turns out we did. Ruth recognized the business and as we get to the corner she points to the mural and says “Hey let’s get a picture of you with the jackass”.  An extremely short moment later a man with his hands outstretched with his mouth agape is standing precisely where Ruth is pointing.  

“Wow!” He says “We’ve never met and this is how you treat me?!”

Stunned silence comes across Myself Ruth and the kids. Ruth quickly corrects herself. “No, Not you, the wall painting.. thing. The donkey “. A Sly grin comes across his face as he pulls a drag off his cigarette.  “Sure sure I see how it is, just make fun of the yak-jawed local.” He walked to the sidewalk kind of laughing and I go to stand in front. Ruth mentioned that were traveling and we were doing the stupid tourist thing.  There was a brief exchange and I decided what the heck and told him to come up and take the picture with me. He kind of waved off at first and the relented and came up.  I shook his hand told him my name is Wayne   He said his name was Patrick, but my name is his middle name. “It’s okay. We can both be Batman “

That picture was taken after that last sentence.

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ANGUG ANGUS ANGUS!

For the first time in a few weeks I was able to get out for lunch and go for a walk. I’m enjoy the cool breeze and the sunshine  and the quiet.
when suddenly I hear this guy coming up behind me, and he’s talking, loudly to himself. I look up and made the foolish mistake of making eye contact, he takes this as some sort of open conversation invitation. He rides up next to me in the gutter and says…
“Do you know what’s better than 100% Angus?”
Taken aback by the perplexing and shocking question, of which I’m sure there’s a philosophical debate here about what constitutes as “Better”. However, the “correct” answer that this guy wanted so he’d be on his way and leave me in peace was totally lost on me.  I did the only reasonable thing I could do, I  shook my head and shrugged.
“200% Angus!”
It was at this moment,  that for whatever reason, my mouth ran off without me.
“No Sir!” I said
“You would be wrong! it would be 300% Angus!”
It was then, where I wondered if I had just opened the cage to a ravenous beast, as he gets this wildly excited look in his eye, like he just found someone who understands him
“MY GOD Damn! You are correct! That would be much better!”
And he rides off, pumping his fist in the air chanting “Angus, Angus, Angus…”
Somewhat relieved that this encounter was brief and not threatening of any kind, But then it happened. This is where I had to stop a second, and wonder
“What the fuck just happened?!”

I’m sitting in a coffee shop listening to a couple of conspiracy nut-jobs shoot their mouth off. This is a q quick synopsis of their current discussion.

Apparently, trump is somehow related to Hitler, genetically – And he is working for Hillary, and Bernie was only there it make it look like our choices matter. The whole election process is nothing but smoke and mirrors, and we are lead to believe that we have the freedom we think we do, but we really don’t. He (the man talking) doesn’t own a phone line or a microwave, because they are actually intrusion devices. They are trying to mind control the populace. America is secretly a communist government.

And We are selling uranium to Pakistan, because they are the worlds leader in technology, NASA gets the leftovers that Pakistan doesn’t want, and they have already stated a mars colony.

Teddie Roosevelt is the best president that we’d ever have, and we will never have one like him again.

There’s a little bit more of Anti Everyone speech, not excluding our current president.

They leave, and I start laughing, Across from me is a lady studying a college course. On the way out the one guy tells her goodbye. she waves, and she looks up to see me laughing to myself.

“That’s quite some story.”

“oooooh” She says. “That’s nothing, this was one of their calmer days. ”

“Wow, Really? ” yeah, She says “This country is in trouble.” “Oh I won’t Argue” I started “there’s something wrong with where we’re going, but being a conspiracy theorist nut job doesn’t help anyone”.  She snorts. “Nope.”

She goes back to her books, and I return to my phone.

30 minutes later another man walks in.

He strolls up the counter, and before he orders, he starts to to tell the barista that Trump has under the table deals with the Russian oligarchy – and he’s been doing slave exchanges. the barista looks someone annoyed, this must be very common place. She presses him for his order, she takes his money and starts making his drink all the while he’s rambling on about how Trumps slaves think they are free. She hands him the cup and he sits down, and starts talking to the guy in the table next to him.  who just looks at him like he’s an annoying child who won’t shut up.

A few minutes later another man walks in, and this guy gets accosted by the Trump oligarchy specialist. The new guy just grabs onto this and just Runs with it. the next few minutes he informs everyone in the room by saying louder than necessary that Hilary is going to get the presidency because it was decided by China. Because that’s how we’re paying China off, With international favors.

The next few moments were very very still, you could hear people’s scowls being staring at them over their coffee as if we just interrupted a British afternoon Tea.

The guy turns around and see’s my Pedometer, and tells me I shouldn’t be using that, because They are being used  as tracking devices so the U.S. military can use a drone strike against us citizens. All of them, all of the pedometers, even the mechanical ones are tracking devices.  I didn’t really know what to say to this, and I really didn’t want to fan the fire. The lady across from me, who has now donned ear buds to get the insanity out of her brain, still has her head down but her eyes are staring at me.  as if she’s saying “Better you, than me.”

“Really? All of them. Interesting, I’ll be sure to get rid of it then.”

“That’s right! he says, That’s what you should do.” At this point I gathered my belongings, told the lady that it was a pleasure to meet her, and good luck with her test.

I don’t think that I’ve ever been so entertained in a coffee shop in my life.

Sunday, Sunday, Sunday!

More like weekend, weekend, weekend; and how eventful it was.

This marks Ruth’s 3rd year in Soromundi. Which is the lesbian (and allies) choir in Eugene. They had their end of season concert, which was wonderful as always. They always do something that kind of catches me off guard. There were a few unexpected props, unexpected not just for the crowd, but for the choir leaders as well. They had no idea what was going on until it was already in the middle of happening. The lady planned and executed the whole thing without anyone knowing about it. They did a cover of ‘Under the sea’ from little mermaid. About 10 seconds into the song, pool floats of Nemo, and a crab and various water life animals started bouncing around the stage. Of all of the photos that I took that night, I wish I had gotten one of that. It was hilarious. Additional things they did this year was a didgeridoo, some Youth Ballet dancers,  and an empty chair to signify for 2 members of the choir that had passed this last year.

This year however, was themed around the Youth. They did several current pop songs, namely, Brave, All about that bass, and Royals. As such, they invited the youth to join them, the only two that did was my daughter and her friend. They did 4-5 different numbers.

The after party was a great time, food, music and dancing in a way to embarrass my daughter. Because, let’s be honest, that’s a parents responsibility. Much to my daughters chagrin, her friend joined in with me and danced. If I don’t make my daughter bury her face in her hand at least once the whole night, I’m clearly not trying hard enough.

we slept like rocks that night, the stress from the concert came off of Ruth and she hit the pillow and barely stirred all night.

The next day we did our weekly Sunday date. We decided to go to coburg to go for a walk, and look at the city. It’s not far and honestly we’re not there very often. Her more than me. While we were out we passed a few people on a tandem bicycle. They were in the mist of repairs and made the comment of “Oh that looks unhappy.” They had broken a spoke. They had the back wheel ripped off and trying to figure out how to replace it, they had spare spokes but lacked the tools, they were discussing what to do and we walked on. On the way back past them a second time they had the bike all put together. I asked them if they got it taken care of and they said no, but they need to get to a repair shop. he was just hoping there was one in Coburg. Which, Coburg being as small as it is, there of course wasn’t. We offered to take them into Eugene. their names were Kathy and Roger, easily into their retirement ages but very active. Kathy stayed with the bike, Roger took the wheel off it, and came with us to Eugene. He was originally going to catch a cab back. Ruth and I decided that was an un-necessary expense that we can easily help them out with. We hung out waited for the repair , and returned him to Coburg to put the wheel back on his bike.

As it turns out, they have a goal, they are cycling 10,000 miles. They came from Redlands, CA they were half way through their second 1,000 miles when this happened. it’s probably the only repair they couldn’t do on the road, mostly because the tool to fix it was much heavier than they could legitimately take on them. They were coming up the coast towards Seattle then over to NYC. they average between 40 and 90 miles a day. Once in NYC they will cycle around through Texas, then back to CA.  We got a small mention on their blog for the assistance we lent them. I wish them well.

My sister issued the complaint that someone took a w*rd and replaced a letter to make the word “Less profane” and she didn’t understand what the point was if you knew what it was in the first place. Then made the suggestion that perhaps you should just use a thesaurus.

Comments were made about how words are only offensive if you want them to be.

She said if we choose certain words than commit to it.  Because “People put in the asterisk because they don’t want to offend people. Yet we all know what they intend to say.”

I, as her brother, got snarky and wrote a whole sentence of nothing but asterisks, to which this got some humorous responses. I did this after I had written the response. so I changed it letter for letter. I have the actual sentence, it exists I wasn’t just being an ass. But she never asked for it.  So after the humorous commentary that I had received. I added the below response. it got so wordy that I decided that it shouldn’t be on facebook. So I figured I might as well post it publicly. I don’t know that she’ll ever see this, maybe I’ll email it to her.

This was my response

I’m going to get back to the point I wanted to make before I decided to have some humor at your expense.

about a year or so back, I made a post to Facebook that I dropped the F-Bomb. I got a nicely worded message from a woman whom you share a similar belief system with. She stated that she was offended at my use of language. And that the very least, I should be considerate enough to take out the middle letters and replace them with asterisks so she doesn’t have to “read” the word, even though she knew what it was..

So now you’ve established this double standard. If I don’t do it, I offend someone, if I do it, I offend someone. The funny thing is — and maybe this is the 18 months of therapy talking; the words “I’m offended” come off to me as ‘”I cannot control my emotions, so I need you to stop doing, whatever it is that you’re doing that makes me feel this way.

Now you could argue “You need to choose better words.” Better by who’s definitions? Yours? No, you cannot expect anyone to only words that you would agree with. I can go out side to the corner and scream “Bloody” all day long, and people might think that I was a little crazy. I live in Eugene, no one would care. However, Now if I was to scream ‘fuck’ I’d get yelled at. Pretty quickly too.

Now if I was to do the exact same thing in England, the reverse would be true. You can yell “Fuck” as much as I want, and again people would think I was weird, but not do anything about it. But if I yell “Bloody” ooooh no.. don’t do that.

You cannot have it both ways. You need to either accept the fact that people are going to omit letters for “Sensitive types”, or accept that some where in the back of your head, someone decided FOR YOU what words are bad.

My wife Accidentally gave my phone number out to a company that’s going to call me after work and try to get me to spend money. Rather than ignoring the phone call, I’m going to pick it up in the Voice of Gollem, and repeatedly ask them if they have my precious.
—–

So… They called an hour earlier than what they were requested. And I answered, as Gollem. He asked for me and I just kind of mumbled and finished with “what?” The guy paused Momentarily on the phone, then just started going off on his speech, clearly not really paying attention to me at all. so I interrupted him.

“Do you have my precious?”

He stops.. and for a second there’s dead air.

“I’m.. sorry?”
“My Precious! Do you have my precious?”

*More dead air for a moment. I hear clicking in the background. no doubt checking to make sure he called the right number.*

“Is this Wayne?”

“Why? Does he have my precious?”

More dead Air

“I’m slightly confused.”

“It’s simple, do you have my precious-es?”

*Deep sigh from the phone. * “Sir, you aren’t being very professional.”

“Professional? Listen to him precious he talks about professional, calling people with lies , making people feel safe and false hope so they can steal my precious-es.”

I hear him make a noise.. I’m not sure if it’s a laugh, or a scoff, it cuts off quickly, he obviously has muted me. A moment later he comes back.

“When you decide that you want to be serious about what I..”

I got pretty emphatic at this point, clearly he deserved it. Obviously he wasn’t listening to me at all!

“I am being serious, I’m being serious that I want my precious” 

*more dead air*

“Good bye sir”

If you’re going to fish for money, expect someone to go outside of the box.

Ignorance isn’t always Bliss

Socrates once said “The only true wisdom, is knowing that you know nothing.”

He also went on how wisdom was gained by your acceptance of your own ignorance. This however, isn’t always what people think of when they say “Ignorance is bliss”. I think we are too ignorant, and people who pretend to know much, often know that they don’t and they feel stupid by it, or for it as it were. But those people don’t take the opportunity to educate themselves are choosing to remain that way. Knowledge is power, and knowledge is freedom. That being said, sometimes ignorance, is just flat out ignorance, and the choice to remain so.

A few weeks ago we were in Utah, took the kids to Liberty park. They always loved that park. My oldest is 14 and is starting to mature and take a huge interest into girls as a whole. While we were there, he took a liking to a couple of boys and a girl. We’re differentiate the boys by their hair color, a blonde, and a black haired boy. The girl who was wearing short shorts and a Bikini top. She barely had what one could call breasts. but they were there, and my son, he noticed. out of the boys the Black haired one seemed to instantly get and understand that he was Special needs, and treated him kindly, the other two treated him like shit. The girl was really mean to him right off the bat, he more or less ignored her and played with the boys. At one point he started to feel rejected and He and I went for a walk.  while we were walking we ran across that group, the girl wasn’t there, it was just the boys. The black haired one called to my son and said hello, and asked if he was going to be back to the park tomorrow. We told him no, we’re from out of town.  10 minutes later, he got called over by this same group. This time that girl was with them. I followed far enough behind to catch a drift of what was going on. They asked him how to spell a name of a color. He didn’t know, he didn’t say he didn’t know, he just flat out didn’t say anything. The girl called him stupid, then stating “See I told you that he was a idiot retard” The blonde laughed and ran off with the girl. The other one stayed standing there confused before he left.

my son was in tears, he just wanted a friend.

we cycled back around and picked up his siblings. In doing so I ran across said girl and her mother, Ignored them both. I met up with Ruth and  started heading out. it took a moment to realize that the girl the boys that she was running around with, and her family were walking in front of us.

Ruth turns to and whispers to me “That’s a girl, with no self esteem and no self worth.”

The girl turned around and yelled “hey you stupid!” (talking to my son) ” I told you to stop following me.”   I turn around and Jaron who has been pretty well disheartened by the events was about 5-7 feet behind us.

My wife and I both responded “We’re NOT following you, we’re leaving the park.” She ignored us and kept yelling at Jaron like he was a lesser being.

to which I added rather angrily “it takes a real big person to make fun of an autistic child, I’d said he was smarter than you at this point”

This scrawny almost non existent 14 year old is girl tried to get into my face stating that she was going “beat me down” I looked at her and said “Seriously?!  Really?! What do you think are you going to do me?”

Her parents came back her dad grabbed her by the neck, her mom asked what happened I explained it. He’s Autistic he doesn’t always understand. she’s making fun of him. I explained the color and the spelling  situation among a few other things that he had informed me off. Just general mistreatment towards him from the girl and the blonde headed boy.  at this point the wrath of both her parents was on her, of which her attention was one of shock, she thought herself to be big and protected by parents. Ruth pointed out that her behavior was her being a bully. this punk kid got angry “You think that’s being a bully?” like she truly didn’t understand what the definition of the word was.  Her parents grabbed her, ignored me entirely and her father figure dragged her off by the scruff of her neck like baby kitten.

Jaron was angry, and upset. I calmed him down as we returned to the car. I tried to explain that just there like their are good adults, and bad adults, there are good kids and bad kids. The blond and the girl, were not good kids. Those are not the kinds of friends he needs, those kinds of friends will hurt him. When we got in the car and started to drive off, Ruth informed me that during the encounter with the girl and her parents, the black haired boy turned to Ruth and apologized for her and the blonde’s behavior.

I was proud of  Jaron of how he handled this, and I have hope for that black haired kid. Among the three of them, I have hope for him.

2 minutes of your time.

I was out on my walk today kind of lost in my own thought, about 100 yards from where I need to go back into work, I slowed my pace realizing that I’ve done my usual 25 minute loop in 10 minutes.

I looked ahead and saw a small girl, this was from 50 yards, from that distance, there was nothing distinctive about her physically, only that she was walking rather downtrodden. I put some thought into it, and I had to wonder what her story was. Even in the same thought I decided that I shouldn’t stare or anything of the sort. We passed by I noticed that she was very short, she had long beautifully curly brown hair. We  locked eyes just for a second, and I nodded my head like I do to all the people who I pass by.

“Excuse me” came this quiet timid voice “ And I turned.

“Do know where Pacific is”* her was reminiscent of Luna Lovegood, without the crazy.

“Pardon?”

She spoke a little louder “Do you know where pacific is?”*

“I don’t” I said, pulling out my phone. “Let’s find out, shall we?”

“Thank you, I got so turned around” She said with a bit of a sigh of relief in her voice.

“It’s no problem; I moved here a few years ago, I’m still finding that I get turned around and lost in certain parts of the city”

“Where are you from?”

“Oh, I’m from Utah…” I said while still gazing at my phone.” Oh I know what building you’re looking for, in fact you’re not very far from it. Follow this street, and turn this corner and it loops around, it’s about 300 yards and it’s the red brick building across the street.”

“Thank you so much!”

“Actually, if you turn and go through that parking lot, it goes all of the way through and it comes out in front of that building, you could save yourself probably 7-10 minutes”

“That would be great.” She physically relaxed

“Would..” Pausing and choosing my words carefully. “You like me to walk you there?” I asked carefully

“I.. I I would like a friendly voice, but I don’t want to put you out.”

“I’m not put out at all, I’m happy to do it.” I turned and we walked together.

I asked her where she’s from. The story I got was sad. She was just heading to an interview for a new job. She just moved here weeks ago for college had finical issues, family issues, and some discontentment with school her roommates seem to take delight in treating her poorly.   Needless to say she’d been down on her luck and going through an extremely rough time. She stopped as she started to get into her family drama, noted that she’d been complaining the whole time and apologized for it. I told her it was no big deal. Sometimes we all need a friendly voice, and someone who will listen; and she for the first time I got a smile. She asked me where I worked, and for my name, of which I provided my name, I informed her that I worked down the street. We spoke briefly about how I ended up out here.

It was time for us to part, I told to be confident in her interview and she’ll do fine.

We parted ways, and I returned to work.

Roughly an hour later, I get a phone call from the security desk stating that a woman named angelica was here to see me. When I got down it was the short curly brown haired girl from earlier. She was in tears; she gave me a hug and thanked me for being the only kind generous voice she’d received that day.

Sometimes my friends, all it takes, is a nod, a smile, and 2 minutes of your time.

*business names changed

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