Category Archives: Family

The Birth of Tippy Gnu: Preface

We begin my book, The Birth of Tippy Gnu, with the Preface. Every few days following this will be a new installment, as we progress deeper and deeper into the book.


The Birth of Tippy Gnu:
Preface

 

From a young age, my megalomaniacal ego urged me to write my autobiography. But my pride in my humility always resisted this urge. The two forces battled it out for decades, but finally pride lost. One day I caved into my ego, faced my keyboard, rubbed my hands together, cackling like a madman, and commenced typing.

I didn’t get far. For the life of me, I could not get past the time of my birth. I kept drawing a blank. But I persevered, and finally managed to conjure up some memories. These were the highlights of my life. My achievments. But as I pondered these highlights, I felt a powerful lethargy dragging me under. I couldn’t stop yawning. And eventually I succumbed to a deep sleep.

Over and over, day after day, I repeated this exercise of reviewing the highlights of my life, only to find myself face first on top of my keyboard, with drool shorting out the circuits beneath.

I learned to buy cheaper and cheaper replacement keyboards. But I couldn’t figure out how to prevent losing consciousness, and over time even these cheap keyboards put a strain on my wallet. Finally one day, as I was chucking a fried keyboard into the trash, the truth hit me. I realized I had no interest in the highlights of my life. I was literally boring myself to death.

It occurred to me that what I was most interested in was not the things that happened after I was born, but rather, the events prior to birth.

I felt much more excited about what happened before I exited the womb, than after. Because it seemed to me that one cannot understand the after until one becomes acquainted with the before. The before explains it all. And then there’s no need to discuss the after, and all the monotonous details.

All anybody needs, to understand my life, is to know what was going on with me before I arrived in this world. Before my birth. Before the water broke. Before each trimester. And even before conception. That is where the foundation lies. And the grand design. The blueprint. That is what makes me, me.

Therefore, this autobiography of Tippy Gnu is about the birth of Tippy Gnu. It’s about what happened before birth, during, and immediately after. It does not concern itself with the details of my childhood, my schooling, my romances, my various careers, nor any other folderol I may have involved myself in as a human bean.

After the reader learns about my birth, the reader will know as much about me as the reader will need to know.

Birth is the creation of human life. It’s as much a spiritual event as it is biological. The two are intertwined, at first loosely, but gradually more and more tightly, like a spool of string reeling in a kite. In this autobiography, I’ll provide the spiritual details. But I’ll also throw in some biological minutia, for your scientific curiosity. For the former, I spent my research time in meditative reflection. For the latter, I researched on the internet.

I’ll take the reader through the biological stages of human gestation, from conception all the way to parturition. And I’ll throw my soul, my spirit, the very heart of me, into these stages, and show how they affected my inner core. That is how the reader will learn about me. That is how the reader will come to understand my true essence.

So now, let’s go back. Way back. Back to when I was not thought about in this world, nor ever had been. To a time when Earth had been spinning along on its wobbly orbit quite well without me for over four billion years. To a time before conception, when I was but a twinkle in my happy-go-lucky father’s eye. For that is where my story starts.

That is the true beginning.


Come on back in a few days for that true beginning, when I’ll post Conception: Introduction to The Birth of Tippy Gnu.

An Old Birth Is Born


I recently finished writing a short book. It’s my autobiography, and I had to keep it short. That’s because I only wanted to cover my accomplishments, and skip over all the bad stuff.

I call it, The Birth of Tippy Gnu, or TBOTG. It’s a mere 12,000 words, so it hardly qualifies as a book, but for my own pride’s sake, that’s what I’m calling it.

I’m parceling it into 14 or so installments, which I’ll soon be posting for your reading displeasure. In fact, this fantastic, intriguing, inspiring yawner will be born tomorrow, with the first installment. TBOTG will provide handy filler for my blog over the next month or so, allowing me to kick back and start doing what I’ve always been doing. Which is kicking back.

I wrote this book for the purpose of becoming rich and famous. But if that doesn’t happen, I at least hope to have fun reading and responding to any comments readers might leave. That’s always a trip. 🙂

So tomorrow I will be born again. And what’s great is, I don’t even have to attend a revival meeting. Stick around for all the fun, entertainment, and lurid details. I hope everyone likes TBOTG. Or at least a majority of my readers. Or at least a few. One, maybe?

And as you read along, maybe we will be drawn closer together, until somewhere near the end we become like family. I hope so. Because then I will ask you for a loan.

And with that, I’ll see you tomorrow, bright and early, for a fresh new start in life.

The Church of Ruth and Pancakes

Ruth, about a year before she died.

My mother-in-law, Ruth, died about three years ago.

Ruth was a tough-minded woman and an alumnus of the college of hard knocks. And she could be hard to please. She disliked all of her sons-in-law, as well as her daughter-in-law.

Except me. She and I had similar philosophies on life, and agreed with each other often enough to be agreeable with each other.

But that wasn’t why she liked me. She liked me because I worked for a living and took care of her daughter. Which was hard to do. I’m lazy and don’t like work, so like I say, she was hard to please.

Ruth was old-school. She saw a man’s place as one who brings home the bacon. She liked when women worked, too. But she especially enjoyed seeing a man bending his back.

Occasionally I would yawn and stretch in front of her, and mutter, “I’m tired.”

Her invariable reply was, “What the fuck do you have to be tired about? Get the hell off your lazy ass and do something!” She was half joking, but the other half was deadly serious.

She and I viewed the world through morose-colored glasses. She greeted the news of pregnancies with deep somberness, as if someone had died. But word of a death left her feeling elated, and eager to celebrate the blessed event.

Ruth cobbled together many wise sayings over the course of her long life, some stolen and some original. Every Sunday morning for over 20 years, my wife and I, and other members of my wife’s large family, would gather at my in-laws’ house. My father-in-law, Jake, would cook pancakes for us, while Ruth regaled us with her wisdom.

It was almost like being in church. Family gossip and other salacious news was tossed around the table, just like all that gossiping that goes on at places of worship.

Ruth would ponder over the table talk, then weigh in with her proverbs and preachments, often punctuated with four-letter imprecations, and mallet-mouthed maledictions. Her sermons were down-to-earth, salty, and as powerful as fire and brimstone. They hit home hard, sometimes to the chagrin of a pancake eater seated nearby.

One day I wrote a poem about her, and read it to her at church. Er, I mean at Sunday pancakes. She loved the verses, and requested that I read them at her funeral. It took eight years, because Ruth was slow to leave this world, but finally I was able to grant her request.

That was three years ago. Since that time, I’ve had the honor of sleeping in the same bedroom Ruth slept in for nearly three decades. In fact, it’s the same room she passed away in, and the same room I’m typing this post in.

She haunts me. In her loving but tough-minded way, her memory reminds me now and then to get off my lazy ass and stop napping. Do something. Take care of business. And cut out the bullshit.

Well if I’m going to be haunted, I think you should be too. So I’m unleashing Ruth’s spirit upon you. I’m sharing with you the poem I wrote for her, which I read at her funeral. I hope you like it, but keep in mind that it goes down better with an earful of gossip and mouthful of pancakes.

The Church of Ruth and Pancakes

The Church of Ruth and Pancakes
Holds service every week.
We congregate on Sundays
And find the things we seek.

We find many words of wisdom,
And a family reunion,
Where Deacon Jake fries pancakes
And serves them for Communion.

The sermon is a doozy,
With words of wisdom, long in tooth,
From a wizened, world-worn woman
Whom we call our Prophet Ruth.

Now listen up, and I will share
Some treasures from her mind.
If you heed these gems you will become
A little more refined:

“Never deal with a dummy,”
Prophet Ruth is prone to mime,
“My father warned me if you do,
“You’ll be screwed most every time.”

“I can smell a bum a mile away,”
She’s often proud to state.
But when the bum comes near her,
God help that poor man’s fate.

And to the fair young ladies
Attracting all the guys,
She’ll say, “A stiff prick has no conscience,
“Take this warning from the wise.”

And when an older woman
Acts mean, she’ll find the blame,
She’ll say, “An old bitch was a young bitch,
“I think I know your game.”

She sees how generations live
And says with gravity,
“You’ve got to think of fruit
“Falling not far from the tree.”

We’ve learned a lot from Prophet Ruth,
With pancakes on our plate,
And as our week goes grinding by,
It’s for Sunday we can’t wait.

If you follow Prophet Ruth’s words,
Your reward will one day be
Pancakes made in heaven,
With some damn good company.

That Time I Stole a Horse

The Horse Thieves ~ painting by Charles Russell

About a month ago, I bragged about stealing a horse. I’d like to take full credit for this nefarious deed, but I must admit that I had help.

Well, (kicking the dirt) actually I was just an accomplice. Here’s the story:

I briefly ran with a horse thief gang. Fortunately we weren’t caught, or our necks would be as long as a giraffe’s. Anyway, it wasn’t my fault. My sister put us up to this crime, with her lousy choice in husbands.

Her first husband made a practice of stealing airplanes. He’d fly them down to Mexico, and then fly cocaine back across the border, low under the radar. He was a fun, rough-and-tumble guy when sober. But he was a scary, violent, son-of-a-bitch when drunk or high.

After a few broken jaws and noses, she finally left him, and changed her name so that he and his family could not track her down and kill her.

Her second husband was a cold-shouldered, boorish math teacher and volunteer deputy sheriff. He treated my family like scum, and treated his own family worse. But I think he hated his math students the most.

He got a mistress, and one morning calmly announced, as he was heading out the door for work, that he wanted a divorce. Later, his new wife divorced him, and he begged for my sister to take him back. But she was already on her third husband.

Her third husband was a cruel, bipolar, lunatic, fucking madman. I’ll call him Bubba, to protect his guilty, sorry, motherfucking ass. They built a successful business together, and it was a horse ranch. My sister did most of the work, but I’ll grudgingly admit that Bubba was useful at times too, when he wasn’t laying around nagging her about everything.

My sister broke and trained Missouri Foxtrotters. She had the knowledge, and was widely regarded as an expert in this breed of horse. In fact, she was one of the best in the business, and still is. Bubba didn’t know shit, but sure knew how to holler at her whenever he imagined she was making mistakes.

But at least he stayed out of her way enough for her to make their ranch popular. Equestrians from all over the country flocked to their ranch, for these smooth-gaited horses that took the pain-in-the-ass out of trail riding.

Their best horse was a grey, dappled stallion named Zane’s Diamond Head. Zane was a prize Foxtrotter of legendary pedigree. His sire was the famous Zane Grey, considered the finest stallion in the history of the Foxtrotter breed.

Zane had won many awards over the course of his long life. His stud fees were high, and he got plenty of action. Everyone loved Zane. Except me. I envied that lucky bastard.

One morning I got a phone call from sis, and I could sense something was wrong. She’s five years older than me, and had done a better job at breaking and training me than my own mother. We’ve had a soul-to-soul connection since the day of my birth. Somehow, someway, through that soul connection, I knew something was wrong, even though she was trying to make this sound like a routine conversation.

“Did you leave Bubba?” I finally ventured, right out of the blue.

She hesitated, then said, “Yes.”

“Do you need a place to hide out?”

“Mmm . . . maybe.” It ain’t easy to admit you’re on a third failed marriage.

She’d fled for her life the night before. A young female ranchhand had shown up unexpectedly at a desperate moment. This distracted Bubba, and gave my sister just enough time to grab her purse and car keys, jump into her little Chevy Geo, and speed off, leaving him in a cloud of driveway dust.

We hid her out while she began divorce proceedings. We kept her safe, but she just couldn’t get Zane off her mind. She hated that the prize horse she loved so much, was left to Bubba’s mercy.

Zane was worth some money, but that wasn’t my sister’s biggest concern. She just loved that horse, and knew that Bubba knew this. So she expected Bubba to shoot Zane. Especially after Bubba shot her two dogs.

And so we hatched a scheme. A horse thievin’ scheme.

By community property law, my sister had to have a judge’s order to remove anything from the ranch. Especially things like horses. Because technically, she left him. He didn’t leave her.

And Bubba was guarding the ranch with perfervid zeal, to keep my sister from recovering any of her abandoned possessions. He had guns. He had an insane temper. And he had the law on his side.

But my sister also had something. She had knowledge of his schedule and knew when he’d probably be away from home. He was a religious fanatic, who liked to attend all his fanatical church gatherings. When it came to church attendance, Bubba was very faithful.

In the dark of a very important fanatical religious meeting night, we rolled up a dirt drive about fifty yards from the corrals, with headlights switched off. We were banking on Bubba being gone, unwilling to miss such a pressing conclave of church elders.

But we felt nervous. Bubba was crazy and unpredictable. He could have skipped the meeting, and might be lurking in the brush with a shotgun, planning an ambuscade. Nearly three women are killed every day in the U.S. by domestic violence, and friends and relatives are sometimes taken out with them. We wanted to avoid becoming statistics.

The young female ranchhand was part of our horse thief gang. She was driving the pickup. She remained behind the wheel, and I stood in the pickup bed on lookout, while my sister headed out on foot to Zane’s stall. She could handle Zane better than anyone, and had the best chance of securing the stallion’s cooperation.

A horse snorted. There were about 30 head on the ranch, and they thought it was feeding time, because Bubba hadn’t tossed them their hay yet. Apparently he was in too much of a holy-assed hurry to make his fanatical church meeting, to bother with feeding. Besides, he didn’t really give a damn if they ate.

They began stamping their feet, kicking corral bars, and whinnying. So much for our plans to be quiet and stealthy.

She found Zane, haltered him, and attached the lead rope. Quickly, through the gauntlet of pathetic, protesting equines, she and her stolen horse returned to the pickup truck.

She vaulted into the pickup bed, hanging onto Zane’s lead rope. The engine fired, and off we lurched, Zane tagging along obediently to the pull of the rope. What a good horse that Zane was.

I’ve never forgotten the sight of that magnificent grey-dappled stallion, foxtrotting behind us, nostrils flaring, eyeballs glaring, and plumes of moonlit dust billowing about his flying mane.

We bounced and bumped in the moonshadowed desert for a few miles, on dirt roads that led to Leopard Spring Ranch, and to another friend who was in on the caper. Zane was hid out at the friend’s ranch overnight, before being transported out of town.

Of course Bubba was furious, as I could tell from his trembling voice when he called me the next day and asked if I knew what had happened. And of course I denied everything. That’s what horse thieves do.

Divorce lawyers eventually sorted everything out, though Bubba got the much better end of the deal.

He married again, to a devoutly religious woman. Then he proceeded to render her obedient, with punishments of biblical proportions, and with biblical justification.

My sister finally found a good man, and she’s been with him for the past 20 years now. She runs a very successful Foxtrotter ranch, and is highly regarded throughout the horse world of southern California.

Helping to steal a horse was one of the funnest and proudest moments of my life. It left me with a sense of prepotency, and helped me feel as much the stallion as the horse, himself. There’s nothing like a little horse thievin’ to stroke a man’s ego.

As for Zane, well he was old. He couldn’t cover anymore mares, or sire anymore offspring, because his pecker was worn out. And just eight months after we stole him, at the age of 25, he succumbed to old age and cancer.

And now Zane is in the great paddock in the sky. His offspring populate generations of the breed of Foxtrotters. They’re the best of the breed. If you want a good Foxtrotter, look for one with the name “Zane” in its pedigree.

My sister didn’t get much out of this marital breakup, but she did get to keep Zane a little while longer. For her it was a moral victory of love for an animal, and thus one of the few shining things she was awarded in the divorce settlement.

Hell, you might just say it was a steal.

Piano Dad

He was given no choice. My grandparents forced him to take piano lessons. And my dad hated it.

But then something clicked. His spirit and soul connected with the spirit and soul of that giant stringed instrument. His fingers figured out how to tickle the ivories, and his ears learned how steal any tune he heard, and send it through his heart and onto the keyboard. And he went from piano pouter to piano child prodigy.

My dad had a happy-go-lucky, jocular personality. And he could charm anyone. His motto all his life was, “Make someone smile at least once a day.”

And he could do that with a piano. Whenever he would spot a lonely old upright or grand, sitting dusty and forgotten in some corner, whether it be in a bar, a restaurant, or somebody’s home, he’d meander over inconspicuously, casually wipe the dust off with his hands, then sit down and start tapping out a slow, hesitant tune.

And then gradually, as his fingers found their rhythm, and as his soul resonated with the great musical beast before him, that tune would build. Before long he’d be in full form, pounding out old standbys, with improvised riffs and harmonies lifting the atmosphere.

A crowd would draw near, and he’d take requests. If he couldn’t remember the tune, he’d ask the requester to hum or sing a few lines. Then his ear would catch it and transform it to the ivories, and you’d swear he’d been playing that song all his life.

A few years before I was born, he was laid off from his job as a machinist. He had kids to clothe, mouths to feed, and bills to pay. So he walked into a bar in Los Angeles and asked what they’d pay him to play their piano.

They allowed him to play for tips.

Night after night the tip jar overflowed, as large crowds were drawn to the bar. He became so popular, it seemed perhaps my dad had discovered a new profession.

But one wassailing evening, after he’d finished burning up the keys, a couple of goons paid him a visit. They asked to see his union card. But he didn’t belong to the local musician’s union. So they gave him the unmistakable message that if he did not join quickly, his fingers would be fixed so that he’d never play a piano again.

Dad said, “to hell with it.” Aerojet was hiring machinists, and they wanted him. He refused to join that damned musician’s union. Instead his fingers returned to metal, and let the ivories be.

My mom and dad divorced when I was two. So when I grew up, he was that charming, funny guy who showed up once-in-awhile and took me to fun places like Disneyland. I loved him, and always felt glad to see him come, and sad to see him go.

When I was eleven years old I attended Cottonwood Elementary school. It was way out in the sticks, and was the last one-room school in Riverside County, California. This old schoolhouse, built in 1897, had a lonely, dusty old piano languishing in the corner. Our schoolteacher didn’t know how to play it, so our music lessons consisted of singing songs A Cappella.

Cottonwood Elementary, where I attended Sixth Grade.

Every morning our 27 little lungs, from first to sixth grade, belted out tunes from Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Oklahoma!, such as The Surrey with the Fringe on Top, and Oh, What a Beautiful Mornin’.

One day I stepped inside the schoolhouse while on recess, and there was my dad, paying me a surprise visit. And with him were my brother and sisters, whom he’d pulled out of classes at their high school. He had to do this on the sly, as a surprise visit, because he was behind in child support. My mother had no idea he was in town.

After a few minutes of hugs and jokes, Dad spotted the piano. And true to form, he quietly gravitated toward it, casually wiped the dust with his hands, and started to play, sitting all alone at the keyboard. And his smile quota for the whole year must have been satisfied in that moment, with the beaming look that appeared on my schoolteacher’s face.

Before long my entire class, and my brother and sisters, were all singing songs from Oklahoma!, as Dad hammered out the tunes on the keyboard. He didn’t know all the songs, but we’d just start singing and he’d catch on quick. His fingers danced. The harmonies were lively and full. And our glee at finally being able to sing with that old piano, gave our faces ear-to-ear smiles.

The walls of that old schoolhouse were in danger of being shaken down, with the music we made that day, and I had never felt more proud of my dad than at that moment.

When Dad got into his late sixties, he realized that arthritis was robbing him of his ability to play. And he knew how much his kids loved to hear his music.

So he paid a professional studio to record him, playing his favorite tunes on their grand piano. He was only allowed one long take, from first tune to last. If his arthritic fingers caused him to screw up, too bad. He had to improvise a riff to cover for the error, and move on.

Fortunately, he could still force his stiff old digits to manipulate the keyboard for the duration. And soon, each of us kids got a CD of 30 piano tunes, courtesy of our maestro father.

My dad has been gone for seven years now. But sometimes when I miss him I play that CD. Thanks Dad, for such a wonderful gift.

And now I have a gift for him, on this Father’s Day. I want to help him fill his daily quota of making at least one person smile.

So for your listening pleasure (on the chance that you may like it), here is my dad’s rendition of Home on the Range:

Stolen Quote: Peaceful Cessation

Those who have the strength and the love to sit with a dying patient in the silence that goes beyond words will know that this moment is neither frightening nor painful, but a peaceful cessation of the functioning of the body. ~ Elisabeth Kubler-Ross


My father-in-law, Jake, passed away at home one month ago. But the night before he passed was anything but peaceful. He grew restive, and kept calling on my wife and me to help him with trivial things. Then he began hallucinating. His pain increased, and the pain medication from hospice was not helping. He was a strong man, even up to his death. He kept trying to crawl out of his hospice-provided hospital bed, and it was all I could do to keep him in place.

At about midnight we felt desperate and called hospice. They sent out a nurse who lived an hour-and-a-half away. That hour-and-a-half of waiting for her arrival seemed like a year-and-a-half. Jake would not sit still. He writhed about in pain. Sometimes he seemed to imagine that he was cooking and eating, based upon the way he moved his hands. He bit hard into his hand several times, and drew blood, thinking he was eating.

Finally the nurse arrived. She gave him a strong dose of morphine. But still Jake struggled, cried out in pain, hallucinated, and kept biting his hand. It took about an hour for the morphine to ease his pain and calm him down. At about 2:30 am he fell asleep. The nurse went home, and my wife and I managed to catch a few hours of sleep, ourselves.

Jake never woke up. Thank God! No, thank morphine!! He peacefully ceased breathing the next afternoon. This “peaceful cessation” must be what Elisabeth Kubler-Ross was referring to.

Kubler-Ross fails to mention the vital role of morphine in achieving a peaceful death. Some people just have to have it. Death is not always as easy as sometimes portrayed. When the miracle of modern medicine manages to keep us alive into our eighties and nineties, we may need another medical miracle to achieve a peaceful death. Morphine seems to be the answer.

I hope Jake truly is in a better place. He was a flawed man, but overall a good man. It was an honor to be by his side during his last hours, and to help ease his pain and his transition to whatever lies beyond. If you find yourself in a position to do the same for somebody you love, do not hesitate. You will never regret being there for that person.

Just don’t forget the morphine.

Three-Day Notice

Note: This is a follow-up to Jake, Lisa, & the IRS, my post of April 25, 2017.

Lisa has rented a house from my father-in-law, Jake, for nearly 25 years. And Lisa hasn’t paid rent for over 20 of those years. Jake won’t admit that, but my wife and I know. We’ve been looking at his financial records.

Lisa hasn’t paid rent, because she was Jake’s mistress. Her free rent was pussy-pay.

This was an affair that Jake hid from my mother-in-law until she died last December. The affair ended years ago, but not the need for continuing the cover-up, in the form of continuous free rent. Hush money.

But after my mother-in-law died, Jake decided he’d had enough of Lisa’s freeloading. He told her she had to move or start paying her monthly dues.

Lisa did neither.

Finally after much gut-wrenching irresolution, Jake decided to evict her. On a hot summer day, Lisa was served a three-day notice to get the hell out.

But the pussy-purveyor wouldn’t leave.

And so she was served with a lawsuit for unlawful detainer.

That didn’t faze her. She stayed put, and made nary an effort to move out of her cathouse. She was a tenant and she knew her rights. Which are much stronger than a landlord’s rights.

This led to a notice from the sheriff’s department, officially instructing her to vacate the premises within five days.

Instead, she filed an “ex parte stay of execution unlawful detainer” motion. This mouthful of words allowed her an emergency court hearing, where she could request an additional 40 days to move.

Jake hired an attorney.

On a Wednesday, her motion was summarily denied. On Thursday morning the sheriff showed up at Lisa’s door. Lisa was already gone. It had taken 43 days and over $1,000 in legal fees from the date she was served with the initial three-day notice to get out, before she actually got out.

But at last, the pussy-pusher was vanquished.

However she left behind her crazy sister. Her sister wept hysterically, and angrily threatened lawsuits, and called the deputies “assholes”. But she finally complied and left the property, only to stand one foot off the property line, while haranguing my wife and me with all kinds of invectives, pleadings, and crazy nonsense.

We ignored the crazy lady as best as possible while changing the locks. Meanwhile, Jake stayed at home. He’s an invalid so he couldn’t change the locks, himself. And besides, this is a scene he wanted to stay as far away from as possible.

Even so, it got to him. Jake fell ill later that day and took an ambulance ride to the hospital. Now he is lying on what could very well be his deathbed.

Lisa also left behind her nephew, who was living in the backyard in a motor home. He was very pleasant and left peacefully. But he complained that he had been paying rent to Lisa, and that she didn’t tell him about the eviction until the day before. He claimed Lisa owed some of that rent money back to him.

The crazy sister claimed the same thing.

And Lisa left behind one cat, three dogs, two full-grown pigs (big, hog-sized pigs, not those little potbellies), and four chickens.

Lisa also left behind piles and piles of junk in her front yard, backyard, garage, and within the house itself. Lisa is a hoarder.

A small example of the mess Lisa left behind.

It will take months of work and thousands of dollars to restore this house into rentable condition. Karma is a sneaky son-of-a-bitch. Jake has been wanting out of this world for a long time. But he hasn’t been able to escape before this mountain fell upon him.

As Jake lies on what is likely his deathbed, he has to deal with the consequences of his cheating past. And so do my wife and me, in our efforts to clean up the mess Lisa and Jake left behind.

So I’m gonna be busy for a while. It may affect my posting regularity on this blog, and my reading and commenting on other blogs. Be advised.

This is your three-day notice.

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