I wrote this up for my son, he emailed me for my birthday, and some one once again reminded me of why I do not forget.
So while this is for him, as the USA invites Trump into their President job I present it as a reminder of WHAT INTEGRITY IS….
Photo from 2015 our first time meeting in 12 years, and lasted about 24 hrs. My son Ben’jamin.
since you bring up birthdays…
There is another reason I don’t do much of any celebrating on my birthday, it is kind of a semi private story, I tell people of it
It is not a shame on me story & yet is it.
It starts in South Lake Tahoe, about Jan. 8-9, 1984. Yeah just after len’s birthday but it is more of a time marker ,I don’t remember when the young man moved into the weekly rental units I was living in but it was about a week before my birthday.
Harold was his name I think, (I’m bad with names anyway), any way he came over just after moving in to the unit next to mine. Wanted to go to the casinos one night. Said he would buy drinks. I had a car so I agreed to take him. He told me he had just moved up. But I don’t ask many questions of people, I was still doing Tarot card reading back then, So the less I knew of people the better.
Well, I took him down to the casinos a couple nights but I was not into his flashing cash and wasting money. I made a little money & had my art of painting back then, I did both oils and acrylics and needed my monies for that & rent & food.
Any way, on Jan. 13th about 11:30 pm, yeah late in the night, Harold came knocking and wanted me to drive him to the whore houses in Nevada. 80 miles away. I refused, telling him I would take him the next day because tomorrow is Friday & my pay day so I would have the money for gas as well. I told him i would be happy to drive him down after work and take a book with me so he could stay as long as he wanted.
I don’t buy prostitutes, not with my empath level. Any way he insisted, quite a bit but I got him to leave & go back to him place so I could go to sleep.
I did not tell him that Saturday was my birthday & I wanted my paycheck so I would have money for my own party by myself. He did not know that Saturday was my birthday, like I said we did not get into and deep conversations a single week into meeting each other.
Well, Jan. 14th, I came home from work & knocked on his door. No answer.
I waited a couple hours, then went in to the casinos to get some dinner & cash my check.
I came home 10:30pm and still not seeing any sign of Harold, I went to bed.
About 7:30 am on Jan 15th 1984, I got a knock on my door. It woke me up, so thinking it was Harold, I did not do much anything to cover myself just a quick tee shirt to hide my naked ass.
I open the door to two older people, a man & a woman. I was a little shocked, but asked they “Yes?”
They asked if I was “PETER”.
Yes. I replied.
They then introduced themselves as Harold’s parents. Apologized for waking me, but them kind of wanted to talk to me, Harold, their son, had killed himself on the 14th, yesterday.
I dropped my jaw. And asked if I could get dress first, then talk.
They said Yes, of course, please come over to his room when you are ready.
5 minutes later I was in Harold’s unit, everywhere where gift wrapped packages and brand new things…
They then explained that against their better judgement they had let Harold continue to move up to South Lake Tahoe
“you see, Peter, on Jan 1, Harold got married. On Jan 2nd Harold was driving with his bride up to South lake Tahoe for their honeymoon. There was some kind of auto accident and she died in the car in front of him. Harold wanted to come up any way and a few days later moved into this apartment. You are the last person to see & talk to our son alive.”
We spoke for a little while, the family had property up there in the area, a cabin, he when there made a “Suicide video message” and started up a car in the garage and went to sleep in the car knowing it would kill him. He just could not live without his wife. Yeah, his world fell a part just 2 weeks earlier…
I spoke of his whore house request and in tears to this day, Wish I had taken him. How I had been there for people, relationship counselor & aid for abused people. I was sorry I had missed the signs, but I only had spent a couple hours with him. I did not know of the accident.
His parents told me, Harold said he owned me $1000s of dollars for drugs he had me buy for him.
I told the truth, I smoked pot but no I would not and did not buy him any other drugs. I spoke of his spending that monies in the casinos, and told them that No Harold owed my no monies of any kind for any reason.
We spoke a little longer then I took my leave to go to my room.
Hell, yes I smoked a bowl, and cried! Those people never knew it was my birthday either…. I simply never told them.
A little while later an hour or so the parents came back over to me and asked me to come to Harold’s room for a minute.
I went in there, and they told me that since I had been a friend to Harold in his last days I could choose anything in the room I wanted.
Brand new snow skies, boots, winter gear and other nice stuff every where.
I walked around the room, and then saw an old dictionary, I picked it up, it was from Harold’s school days.
I told them I would like that dictionary.
Well the surprise on their faces was obvious, so I quickly explained, I would like some thing I would use to remind me I missed being there & as a writer I would & could use a dictionary. I then looked around the room and said I just would not feel right about something else.
They agreed, and said they would bring it over in a few minutes, they did and had signed a thank you in it to me. When they gave it to me I also gave them one of my painting, signed in memory of Harold.
I doubt you remember an old dark brown dictionary, always near at hand, by the computers and used many times you needed to know how a word was spelled. But I had it till len’s house or when I got out of prison. I thought I had it when I ran from len’s in 2015, but the last I remember seeing was around len’s house.
So no, I don’t celebrate my birthday, it is a memory of not caring “quite enough” for another person. I like to be alone, or just a quiet night.
I was born on Martin Luther King jr birthday, a civil rights person.
I was given to an abusive person and always reminded how I was a worthless piece of trash and would have to pay everything given me back to len. Having to share my birthdays with him a just an insult that could not ever be explained, specially to that family. From 3 years old on, I was always a part of len’s birthday. I hated that man and of course would not be allowed to explain to “his people” of why.
And then when it came time to step forward and forget myself for another person, I thought of my birthday and myself. Some one killed their self when I could possibly have made a difference.
Your mother took away my desire to let any one close.
The government took away you, and as you say if I am physically in your presence it is emotionally troubling for you. I can’t hurt you, I am not abusive like those other people.
len destroyed any relationship to a family in childhood.
And whatever person I friended, has always betrayed me…
So yes, I walk alone. I have learned to deal with it and live this life.
I can only hope that in sharing these stores with you, that you do NOT DROP INTO PITY but understand the STRENGTH I offer all the people I pass in my life. And the strength of person/integrity, role model I OFFER YOU.
Please do not feel sorry for me, instead please feel the inner core of strength I offer.
I am what I am, I survive and I smile as I walk knowing if nothing else I just pissed off another enemy for having survived another day.
And yes, every year some jerk will come out of the shadows to cause me to remember this story.
Cause me to remember to fight & not give up.
Any way I need to dry up my tears, wipe my eyes and finish cooking myself some dinner.
Tomorrow I will sent this off to you.