Friday, January 15, 2010

How Many More?

Ooo, another three word title, since I usually use two words, but I wanted to emphasize something. I have heard that phrase "how many more" to describe killings. How many more people will die with guns before we ban handguns? How many more people will die at the hands of drunk drivers before we crack down on them? The list could be endless. Even, how many more rap songs to we have to listen to before somebody stands up and says enough. It isn't music. But, I digress.

Yesterday, at 4:45pm, I was walking from the library to the mission for supper. That is when they serve it. So, I have to cross two roads to get to the block I need to be to get to the mission. The cross streets are Assembly and Hampton. I got across Assembly okay. It is the busier of the two streets with six lanes. Hampton has four lanes. So, I waited until the light turned green, and I had the walk sign before crossing Hampton. All of a sudden, a driver runs the red light on Hampton; barely missing the cars on Assembly; tires screeched; horns blared; and he missed me by a couple of feet. I stopped in the road and yelled at the driver, but he kept on going at the same speed. Had he been texting? Was he on the phone? Was he running from the cops? Your guess is as good as mine. But, the fact remains that he ran the light. I think someone called the cops, because I saw a police car with his lights and siren on speeding down Taylor Street, which is one block over, heading in the direction of where the driver was going. I can't tell you if the driver was a man or a woman, but I do know that there is no excuse for what the driver did.

Since I walk everywhere, I see a lot of things. One thing that I know is that pedestrians have the right of way, if the signs dictate it. I don't care how busy you are, or how big of a car you have. You have to obey the laws. But, the pedestrians need to watch out for the cars. It should be the other way around. Maybe, in some towns it is. But, in Columbia, many drivers think they own the road. How many more are going to run red lights before someone is seriously injured or killed? How many more?

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Oh Fine

It was somewhat inspiring, but a little bit bad, when I would ask Mother how she was toward the end of her life. Her stock answer was "Oh fine". You knew she wasn't fine. After all, she had a massive stroke that took away her ability to drive, walk or speak well. She had macular degeneration, which took away her ability to see and read. She also broke a hip or two. Daddy had died. She didin't have anyone to read to her. But, she never complained. She would just smile and say "Oh, fine".

I was never one to do that. If someone asked me how I was, I would tell them. If I had a pain, I would say where I hurt. If I had a problem, I would voice it. I was never just fine. That is, until today. I was in Sunday School. My third grade teacher came up to me and asked how I was doing, and I said "Oh, fine". She looked into my eyes and asked me if I was sure. I told her yes. She said that we had a good history together, so if I needed her for anything, that I was to call her. I appreciated the sentiment, but I was mad at myself. Why did I say what I did? Why couldn't I tell her the truth? I need a good paying job. I need a place to stay. I did have a good report from the doctor last week, which I thank God for, but I am not fine. I won't get anywhere if I am not honest with people, but for today--"Oh, fine". Gee. They say I look like my Mother, although I have a moustache. Now, I am sounding like her. Scary.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Two Events

Since last we met, two things have happened that I wanted to comment on. First, my trip to see the cancer doctor. As I asked Joni, is it okay to be scared and positive at the same time? She said yes. I was scared. What were the spots on my lungs? I hadn't smoked since 1980. After a lot of questions and examination, the doctor said he thought the spots were a result of my pneumonia and not cancer. I am to go back in a month for a follow-up, but I was relieved. They did take some blood. The nurse was so good, I didn't feel a thing. Then, the doctor told me not to worry about paying him anything. I went to see a social worker there, and she gave me a card that said I would get any treatment and tests for free. A real answer to prayer.

The second event happened at the city bus terminal. A man was approached by a city police officer. The man was told to go outside. He said that he was waiting for a bus. The officer repeated himself. The man repeated himself. Then, the officer put handcuffs on the man and searched him. It looked to be as police brutality, but other homeless people told me that it was another example of how the city police can do whatever they want and nobody can do anything about it. If it had happened to me, I would be running to a lawyer and suing the city. I hope no policemen are reading this blog. I should have done something after the cop stopped me for cutting through a parking lot, which was not posted. Live and learn.

Monday, January 4, 2010

My Birthday

Today is my 40th birthday. I know. I don't look it. But, it is. I have written before about how the youth at Kilbourne Park Baptist Church changed my life. They showed me that I had self-worth. They showed me that I had talents. They loved me for who I was. They didn't care about what I had done in the past. Consequently, the first 16 years of my life is basically a blur. My life began again on January 4th, 1970. God used those young people as catalysts to get me going again. Yes, I have had setbaacks since then. One of which I am going through right now. But, we carry on. So, if you want to know the details about the impact these people had on my life, go back a ways into my blog. But, for now, thanks to Pam, Sonny, Gail, Craig, Buddy, Ellen, Karen, Debbie, Rhett, Lelia, Allen, Nancy, Lawson, David, and so many more. I love you guys.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Mother's Birthday

Today is January 2nd, 2010. That's the first time I have written "2010" in the new year. It usually takes a month for me to remember the correct year.

Today is my Mother's birthday. Both my brother and mother felt cheated in that their birthdays fell around Christmas. My brother's is December 10th. Neither one got really good birthday presents, since Christmas was so close. Usually, it was just a card on their birthdays.

Mother was a special person. I have talked to some people whose mothers were hateful people, but my Mother was very loving. She told me that I was a special baby. Apparently, she had to have an operation for me to be conceived. I don't know the facts about that.

Mother introduced me to the James Bond films and the music of The Beatles. She loved music, books and movies. It is kind of funny that Daddy didn't share in that love. He liked some of the arts, but he didn't have a passion for it. Mother did. I did take Daddy to see "Jesus Christ Superstar", and he liked that. But, that appeal was rare.

So, today is Mother's 95th birthday. I didn't get her a card. Hopefully, this will do instead. Happy Birthday.