Saturday, April 29, 2006

Thinking About Gratitude.

I have returned from paradise and am now spending the weekend at Maria and John's home for the purpose of cleaning their house for them. Remembering that amazing vacation makes my work easier! I am filled with thankfulness that I had such a great opportunity to experience a resort so lavish. I am thankful to have a bit of part-time work, in spite of several major disabilities. I'm very moved that Maria went shopping for my food (ice cream, bear claws and half and half) while forgetting to shop for herself and her husband! God love these people!

They left me with a refrigerator full of really yummy food - a European style noodles, ham, eggs and cheese dish I can't pronounce. Plus chili, part of a pizza, ice cream and bear claws for breakfast! Add to this, excellent gourmet ground coffee, should I choose to brew it up. The dog is happy I'm here and I get to choose my hours of labor. Never mind, also having the use of their computer. The final luxury is their bath tub, with an angled back, just like the bath tub at the Resort at Squaw Creek. For all of this, all I have to do is some housework - I even get paid! I thank God for their kindness and His goodness. Somehow, I think I'm getting the better deal out of this arrangement, but I do leave behind a clean house - yeah, life is good.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Adjusting To Recovery: A confusing, But Pleasant Journey

I receive an impassioned email from a friend discussing 'courage', 'grit' and 'determination'. The shocking thing, is the person being referred to is myself! I started tracking visitors to this blog on Dec. 18, 2005 and as of today I have seven-hundred-and-nineteen visitors! I do get a certain amount of attempted comment spam, but I'd guess it accounts for less then 2 percent of my traffic. I have repeat visits and you all hang around and actually take an average of two minutes and fourteen seconds to READ my content. That figure is actually low, as the timer doesn't count any time for those of you who just view one page. So, I take great pleasure in arguing with the current wisdom which proclaims that no one actually READS content any more, they simply scan. Ha-Za to all of my readers - an obviously above average group on all counts.

I am totally amazed at these numbers. This blog is my attempt to give a hand-up to the struggling abuse victim, who can't figure out why they are still acting really irrationally, when they 'know' better. I have produced what I wish I'd had when I was floundering around, seeking answers,like a fish out of water.

I am encountering success in an on-going fashion. No more of that 'hit-and-miss' stuff! There is a sarcastic expression that covers how I used to view my success:

Even a stopped clock is correct twice a day!

Now, my life has smoothed out. I have a new-found sense of courage to do new things and (ooh!) even risk making mistakes. (How many of us have been absolutely paralyzed by the sense that 'if I can't do it perfect, I ain't gonna do it'? No one learns anything without making errors. This is not to say I don't strive for excellence, but I realistically understand, that my first attempt at something new will happen differently then some task I've been practicing for years. Hello mental health.

I used to get so excited when my life started going right, I'd break out in a cold sweat and wait for a sink hole to open up underneath me. If you don't sabotage yourself, you will actually get used to having a life where major disasters (usually brought about by you) just don't happen any more. You will begin to 'trust' your new skills, social standing and accomplishments.

As I learn to really tell the truth - especially the hard truths I've 'copped' to in this blog, I am amazed at the opinions which come back to me from my friends. One of my pet peeves about the whole problem of child sexual (and every other kind of) abuse is how it not only reaches out to slap us around, but from time to time messes with our close friends. I get fighting mad over that one. I have stopped raging against the fact that all the abuse happened to me. When one of my healthy friends - who can't even imagine having sex with any child, let alone his own child, mentions having a stomach-churning reaction to some of my blog. I want to scream and throw things in anger.

My friend's reaction to this was to tell me that a) I don't hurt him - a fear I always carry, because the events in my background are so severe, b) I'm not responsible for his reactions and c) its his problem, not mine. To all of the above, I just have to put it in that box of "huh?", in my mind. God will eventually get it through my head what all of the above means. Somehow, I know I'm not responsible for everyone else's pain, but this is yet another symptom of being raised by narcissistic role models. I'm toying with the faith-step of 'daring' to believe that not being responsible for everyone else is really true! Man, that is so very appealing, I like the sense of relief, but I'm not totally 'there' yet.

People don't expect me to be perfect. They have foibles, and aren't taken aback when they see my foibles. It is okay to let people respect, admire and otherwise appreciate me, in whatever arena of life they are in. It is NOT okay for me to start taking credit for the results. When, if not for all the help God and others have given me to achieve success, I'd have nothing. Yes, I have some natural ability, but without the help and encouragement from others, not to mention the strength and child-training I've gotten from God, I'd not produce anything, except more confusion and personal despair.

I''ve discovered the joy of putting some 'safe' adventure into my life. I had so many traumatic events coming at me in childhood, I figured anything 'new' was probably bad and or dangerous. Now, that my life isn't like a bad soap opera, I realize I LOVE to explore new things. I love traveling somewhere I've never been before to partake in something at that location.

My next vacation will be in Boston, to see the Ig Nobel Prize Awards at Harvard, and the more serious academic research presentations of the awarded research given at MIT. I plan on waiting until October of 2007 because, I can save the money to fly back, stay in an up-scale Marriott, for three nights and pay for cabs, or other things I may need. I do not mind having a low income for most of my life, but I refuse to: 'go cheap' on a vacation!

As you continue on this journey, your bad days will become less severe and fewer, while your good days will become the norm, not 'a miracle from God'. You will get out of practice on old skills. Old stand-bys, such as throwing up every morning to greet the day, not from alcohol, just nerves. You will forget how to act normally while seeing people with missing heads, animals crawling out of walls or trees which walk! You will realize when you are straying from telling the truth, lying will no longer be 'second-nature'. You will become tired and eventually eliminate people from your life, who are trying to drag you back down to their unhealthier level. Best of all, you will realize you are really a part of the human race. Not only that, but a good part of that community, finally able to accept being loved and appreciated. Because, ultimately, recovery involves learning to accept yourself, warts and all.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

The Resort at Squaw Creek, Squaw Valley, California: WOW!

CyberGal didn't go on a vacation - I went to another planet!

I have never experienced a surprise which absolutely disoriented me, but my suite at Squaw Creek totally blew me away. A huge three room affair, complete with a gas fireplace, kitchenette, bedroom with a huge executive desk, living room / dining room combination and a bathroom! This was no ordinary bathroom. A completely separate bath tub and shower. The shower sported two shower heads. Makes every other shower I've been in feel like well, you know, below this standard. I had three closets! Friends, this was like eight of my rooms put together, outfitted with granite tile, wood trim, with the beautiful afternoon sun streaming through the two windows and even a dishwasher in a drawer!

Not wishing to demonstrate my humble background, when the assistant manager went to show me about the fireplace, he proclaimed:

"Here, let me turn on the fire for you," I resisted the strong urge to respond:

"You want to do what to the fire...?" A handy light switch on the wall, hidden by the hanging curtains (of course) provided instant cabin ambiance. I LOVE fireplaces! And unlike the wood burning variety, I felt safe operating it.

There are two doors leading into the bathroom, from the kitchenette, or from the bedroom. Even after three days, this arrangement confused me. I've been living in one room for too long!
I spent lovely hours before the fire, listening to the in-room stereo, or watching the flat screen TV.

I had three telephones, one in the bathroom, one in the bedroom and of course, one in the living room. I'd never actually do this, but wouldn't it be great. You're on the throne, call up some company who done you wrong - register a complaint, as you answer nature's call. Oh, what symbolism!

The bath tub had an angled ergonomically designed back rest. I wondered if I'd ever find the will power to LEAVE this little bit of paradise. Hot water I had to moderate with cold water, so I could really soak out the seven hour train ride up to the resort.

Amtrak was very good about dealing with me and my disabilities. They were truly helpful and gracious. The only drawback, for me, is that families with kids and the disabled are put in the same car. I understand why this is done. Both groups will need additional assistance in an emergency, but I'm not a kid-person. Seven hours of the little darlings left me drained and ready to pounce on any out-of-control child.

First shut the kid up and then go and "educate" their parents! Oh my, the new parenting style, is to let strangers deal with the little darling! I pondered staying at the home of a friend with his wife and four kids, when I travel east. No dice! I look forward to meeting his wife and family, but I know that a small dose of child goes a long way with me. After a fun evening with the group, I'll flee back to the quiet of my private hotel room. The Resort at Squaw Creek has a lot of great stuff for children. If you aren't into the small fry, hold off on dinner until 9 PM. Then its just the adults.

Gourmet food is also featured here. I had a lamb trio, or three different kinds of lamb, which all tasted like LAMB. I love lamb and get frustrated at most recipes which try to take the lamb flavor out of the lamb. Delicious! The next night I ordered a rib-eye steak that was truly the best thing I've ever had in a steak. Carmelized onions and delicately roasted potatoes in a light sauce, totally eliminating my usual need for A1 Sauce. I saved half of my steak and finished it off on the return train trip.

On the train ride up to the resort, I explored the lounge car, where $7 will provide adequate coffee and a really crummy cheese burger in plastic, which doesn't microwave evenly. When the lady told me the price, I blurted out, in surprise:

"Oh, just like the airport!" which got laughs from all but the waitress.

I wanted to dance through that lounge car on the return trip, bragging about a gourmet steak lunch. I must really be growing up, I didn't do that either. Oh, returning my attention back to Squaw Creek, I enjoyed: Caesar Salad, Spinach Salad and several really wonderful chocolate deserts.

Somehow, a gourmet Caesar Salad is the most striking experience for me. They just do something different or extra to it. All the flavors are distinct, yet blend. Once you have this really good stuff, at least once a year, you'll be willing to pay high prices for it. Thirty dollars to fifty dollars per person, and that doesn't include alcoholic beverages.

I saw and walked over snow - in April. I was there from Monday through Wednesday morning. Sunday night they'd had over three feet of snow fall. My weather was clear and beautiful. It is interesting to swim in an 80 degree pool, surrounded by large quantities of snow with snowball fights breaking out everywhere. I accidentally got hit by a stray fly ball from a child to his father. What fun! The father made me laugh, when he muttered:

"Don't worry, I know where they sleep." He obviously loved his boy and delighted in being a temporary target.

I didn't realize how the mugging had affected my attitude about certain activities. I've not been swimming since it happened. I realize now, I was afraid of falling on the concrete around the pool, or hot tub. I frankly told Rich, the wonderful assistant manager who escorted me everywhere, that I may not be able to handle it. I did want to check out the pool area. He agreed and again tried to put me at ease, that I wasn't an undue burden. I parked my walker and located myself as close to the pool and hot tub as possible, and ventured forth. Once in the pool, I couldn't get out without the aid of steps, which I couldn't find. I guess it is obvious when one can't see. A very nice lady called out directions to me, and once finding a ladder, got out of, and back into the pool just fine. I felt like I was reclaiming my life again. In some small way, Rich and the other wonderful staff people helped me find the courage to take back my full life. Not being able to see never got me into as much physical hurt as not being able to prevent falling. I also realize I need a collapsible walking cane, for those short trips various places, where it isn't safe, or sensible to take my walker. These special canes are available and I'll have one within the next week.

I also discovered how content I truly am with my regular life. After three glorious days in an idyllic local, I was ready to come home. I was looking forward to returning to my new role as webmaster et al for my church. A job I learn to accomplish, literally as I guess how to do it! I was thankful for a refreshing rest from the noisy construction that is on going in my building. I returned home refreshed and excited about my daily routine. I remember times of absolutely hating my regular life. I've grown up a lot and find looking at what is going correctly in my world feels a whole lot better then bemoaning what I don't or can't have.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Avoiding Ruining Your Today Because Of Your Past Abuse

One of the sad facts of life for those of us with the terrible histories, is we can easily destroy our hard-fought-for new life, when reminded of our traumatic past. This again is a topic I have rarely seen discussed clearly, as it involves admitting being far less then a stellar performer. I nearly destroyed a treasured friendship over a memory I couldn't even consciously identify.

Rule Number One: When some event happens and you react radically, STOP! You find out a new fact about a person and you want to terminate the relationship. Before you act on that impulse, you have to try and find out what in the world you THINK happened, as compared to REALITY.

In issues of either physical, or psychological survival, we imprint "emergency" reactions. If you accidentally touch something hot, the impulse to move your hand only makes it to your brain AFTER your "emergency" nervous system forces you to remove your hand, before too much damage can be done. Our brains have a similar system.

To this day, a room at dusk with no inside lamp on, fills me with a mind-numbing dread. Why? Because, as a child of six, this setting meant: A) My parents were asleep and wouldn't get up for hours, if at all. B) I wouldn't get dinner (which was really bad, if I hadn't had anything for lunch). And C) There was absolutely nothing else for me to do but wait it out until the next morning, when I might have awake parents to feed me. This happened a lot and my brain now considers an unlit room at dusk, an "emergency" situation.

I have learned that even when at someone else's home, it is okay to request a light be turned on. I don't necessarily have to inform them of the entire "why". Usually, just saying something like "this time of day makes me nervous, could you please turn on a light?" It is really no problem. If I ignore my internal terror, I'm likely to break out in a cold sweat and want to get into compulsive over eating. This is not good, as I now have all the food I want, any time I desire it.

An empty refrigerator also scares me. Mine - I go to the store and fill it up. Yours - well, I'll do my best to make sure you're not in need, or want. This can offend some people, who are trying to put on appearances. I try to avoid that personality type any more.

This all sounds a bit trite now, but a week ago, I went into "emergency shut-down", after discovering a male friend wears one stud earring! He told me of owning several styles of same and also having a small hoop earring. My first reaction was a strong temptation to cry. I felt an odd, coldness sweep over me. I have learned to observe my emotional states, as at times, it indicates I need to get a medication change. The last time I experienced this severe reaction was over the first time I was mugged. I absolutely couldn't deal with that new reality. A man on a bicycle had stopped beside me, I thought, to ask for directions. I was returning home from a swing shift at 11:30, on a Thursday night.

He grabbed my leather purse strap and began to cut it with a knife. He had to really work at it, as it was a good quality purse. I remember seeing the knife literally an inch from my right breast. I toyed with the idea of fighting, but it would have been too easy for him to stab me in the chest. I was frozen in place. After it was over, I walked on another block and a wacko in a wheelchair told me that he'd give me $10 if I'd perform a sex act on his body! (Some days, you have all the luck).

As I was about to cross the final street to my house, the same bicycle came back, returning my broken purse! It was another man, who had heard me screaming, after the mugger took off, throwing me down into the street. The second person had chased the mugger. The mugger dropped the purse and bike. Now, this kind person was returning my purse. I was almost unable to speak at all. The police were called and a report was made. I was totally shaken and only discussed the incident with one co-worker, who kept quiet about it.

I had to force myself to be rational. All this emotion because I now know that a person I like wears a stud earring? I kept re-reading the email and my emotions weren't getting better, but worse. For some reason, I was now in full shut-down mode. I didn't want to talk to, or see this individual. I wanted to erase this new information. I felt like I'd been abandoned! For those of you who don't see the pattern yet, this is an extreme OVER REACTION. NOTHING about my friend had changed. He'd been wearing a stud earring during our entire relationship, the only change was my awareness of this fact. Usually, logic like this calms me down. No dice. I was still a mess.

When I'm in pain, I use humor. I got on Skype to a few male friends I was pretty sure weren't into earrings and we had a few laughs about the questionable state of Western Civilization. One gent informed me, that it was popular among sailors, as an easy way to show off and transport their wealth. No, I still feel like crap. I then noticed my earring sporting friend was text messaging me. I went cold inside, but had the (I believe) God-given wisdom NOT to act on my torrent of emotions. I acknowledged that the new fact bothered me a bit, but that I'd get over it. I then flat out lied. (One of those: "act as ifs.) Even though I was so screwed-up I was having trouble typing I said something like, "Don't worry, you are still my very cool friend". He laughed and (thankfully) didn't want to continue to chat. I thank God I did NOT share what was really happening with my feelings.

I have absolutely learned that when I over react, the current circumstance has absolutely NOTHING to do with the real problem. The real problem, is: I've been reminded of something from my PAST and my brain thinks its another emotional "emergency". I still had no clue as to what had set off my alarm bells. I knew my friend wasn't gay, and even if he was, I don't care about his sex life. He wears an earring, 90% of the male Marriott employees I've talked to, wear them, so why am I so torqued? I kept sinking deeper into a nasty depression and drawing a total blank as to why.

I now was literally clawing my way through that quicksand-kind of depression. Movement is hard, thinking is murky and my attitude is far below zero. It was actually difficult for me to do my housekeeping job. I'd catch myself sitting somewhere, staring off at a wall, just like my mother used to do. Oh geez, I'm thinking about Arizona. The absolute worst time in my life. Sexual molestation, neglect and abandonment, all within a terrible two-year period of absolute hell.

I was still smarting over a simple fact. My friend and his damn stud earring! I absolutely gagged on it. Why? Something about being gay, the gay lifestyle, or maybe somebody who wore earrings... Suddenly, I remembered another terrible incident in my life. I returned home from work to discover my bi-sexual husband cavorting with two naked boys, 14 and 16, on our living room rug! By God! I could have cared less that he was gay. I didn't want to sleep with him, so if he got it somewhere else, that was fine with me! But no way was I putting up with under-aged children being victimized. I began divorce proceedings and my world began a fast collapse.

Disillusionment! I thought I knew my husband, after ten years of marriage. But I sure didn't know he liked going after 'chickens' (slang for under-aged boys). He was also claiming to be an Eastern Orthodox Catholic Priest. For years, the site of priests vestments caused instant nausea. No one in my world would do that to any child! But I was sure disillusioned on that one!

I felt some clarity. I made wrong guesses about parts of my friend I had no information about. The truth felt like a disillusionment and now I saw the reason I was so totally over the top, emotionally. But, somehow, there was something more. My x-husband was not the root of my distress. He was an additional experience, confirming an earlier traumatic lesson about disillusionment, child molestation.

I was about 7 and daddy slept in my bed many nights. I'm not sure why. He did stuff to me as a baby, but I don't remember him messing with me until this one particular night. I woke up to him being really warm to the touch. He was thrusting himself at me. (I knew what he wanted to do, and I wanted to do it too). He thought I was my mother and he kept saying how they had to get to the hotel. I got up and walked around, trying to wake my daddy up, but he was too drunk. I got back in bed and the same scene re-played. For some reason, I put a stop to it. I got up and ratted out my father.

It was a pathetic scene. My father is blind drunk and has absolutely no clue as to what is happening. My mom is drunk too, but to her credit, when I told her what happened, and how my daddy thought I was her, she sobered up quick. She kept saying: "How could you? How could you?" My father just stood dumbly in the doorway of the family room - absolutely confused and stupid. I used to remember that scene, but just the blue wall behind my father. I'd cry for hours It took years to retrieve the actual memory, to where I could grieve the terrible loss of my parents, my childhood and my innocence. I hate sexual abuse, it trashes the entire life of its victims. There it was! A stinging pain, that never really goes away. I just choose to ignore it most of the time. There are only so many tears one can cry and so much time one can devote to the past. But what did all this have to do with a damn stud earring?

By now, I had begun to return to the here-and-now. I saw how an earring could lead to such an over reaction. Disillusionment for me was always an 'emergency". I can't remember making misjudgments about people that weren't major-league disasters for me. Well, I could see zero consequences for me, as it related to my current friend. At best, he has modern fashion sense, at worst, I can consider it a "quirk". I remembered the sermon from church about leaving the past behind, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith.

By now, I'd finished my job and was walking home. I prayed that I could actually not return to the awful memories of my past. To take the faith-step of turning from those thoughts to something good in THIS PRESENT MOMENT! No lie, it took a lot of mental effort just to pray. I started out snarling at God, knowing He understands my process. He has taught me that it is safe to think the truth to Him. I have said some really nasty things at God, in anger and I know He understands. After the anger I just had to claim the promise that my future is going to be different from my past, because God said so. I slowly began to remember my up-coming vacation, food and some interesting computer work I was doing for my church. I am really jazzed about setting up an activities area on our web site, for the children.

Arriving home, after my thirty minute walk, I was no longer sad, depressed, or angry. My friend now simply has a 'quirk', I confess, I don't completely understand this particular facet of his personality, but so what? I'd still take a personal check from him, vouch for his character, trust him with computer passwords and even let him stay in my home alone. There are very few people on the planet I trust to that degree. My world was righting itself.

I'd gone from morbidity to normality. After dinner my friend, earring and all, and I had a lovely chat session. Yeah, he's the same as he was yesterday, except now I know he truly does sparkle :p. This post is one, somewhat confused journey, along that wonderful gift from God: The Road To Recovery.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Fast Traffic Lights Can Kill You If You Walk Slowly

This is an outrage! Slow-moving pedestrian gets $114 ticket in Los Angeles California, for "obstructing traffic"!

Before I got my walker, I fell hard on my left knee. For three weeks I had a white cane (blindness), in my left hand, and a walking cane in my right hand. I looked like a pair of windshield wipers walking down the street. For obvious reasons, I couldn't walk very fast. People would run into me and push me out of their way, on the sidewalk, or even in the crosswalk. I guess they were working for the CIA and it was an emergency.

Back thirty or forty years ago the average age in the United States, was a twenty-something, so timed traffic lights were set fast (four feet per second). Now, the average age is around 50-something and crossing five lanes of traffic at that rate is getting harder.

While I'm on drivers, I hate it when you toddle up to an intersection and jut your car totally across the intersection. Your butt is truly centered in MY crosswalk! I realize, sometimes, it is because you can't see around a badly placed tree, or corner. Most of the time, however, you are just in such a hurry! Cybergal got angry at such a driver once and faked a freak-out in front of him. I had the white cane and sunglasses and knew I looked totally blind. I deliberately slammed into the side of his car and started screaming:

"Oh, oh, at the blind school they told us that drivers would never block the crosswalk. I must be in the street! Oh, no, I'm going to die!" This man abandoned his car and walked me three blocks to my job. All the while apologizing for overshooting the crosswalk! Staying in character I kept responding:

"They told me, drivers are nice and don't block my way!" I'll probably go to hell for that stunt, but it still makes me laugh. We get tired of walking around your stinking cars, trucks and busses at busy intersections. I heard of an athletic blind gentleman who, when encountering a car in his path, at an intersection, climbed onto the hood and, using only 'proper,' cane technique, tap, tap, taped his way right across the hood of the offending vehicle! I'll bet the driver didn't even notice. Some of you, unfortunately, are too stupid to be driving.

I now introduce a new game called 'pedestrian bluff". I begin to cross a lighted intersection, having a green light. You see me, decide to have some fun, gun your engine and make me believe you are going to run me over. At the very last moment, you bring your car to a screeching halt. May you contract an incurable disease. Sometimes this behavior even has an audio accompaniment:

"See, I told ya, the bitch ain't really blind! Ha, ha, ha!"

And then there are you bastards on bicycles. Both times I've been mugged, the perpetrator has been on a bicycle. I see a bicycle coming towards me, on the sidewalk. Before the second mugging, (where I fought back and got hurt), I didn't used to fear you. Now I want to run. But you are moving too fast. I pull way over and stand still until you pass.

My walker is metal and I feel a little safer. A car can still run me over and kill me, but my baby will really mess up your paint job! If I throw my baby into a bicycles's path, I think the biker might sustain some injury, before attempting to mug me.

I realize that 99.9% of drivers aren't like the above, but its getting very scary out there on the street. People in wheelchairs, crossing 19th Ave. in San Francisco, California, on their way to San Francisco State University, report drivers dowsing them with hot coffee, or other liquid, as they try and cross the intersection!

The new hybrid cars with both gas and electric motors are whisper quiet and can't be heard, above high background noise, by a blind person. As usual, enough of us haven't been killed yet to cause the necessary public outcry and political fallout. It is the same for your toddlers on their way to school. An intersection that needs a traffic light will only get one when a magic number of said toddlers are run over. I saw this process and knew the grieving parents of child four. After child six was killed, a traffic light was duly installed.

One closing note. I am not totally blind, but I see about three to five feet ahead of me. I have been stalked by drivers and pedestrians. I assume if a car begins to tail me, that I've got a nut on my hands. PLEASE don't yell greetings to me, tail me, or honk your horn, or screech your breaks, to get my attention. I almost had a boss arrested after he tailed me for two blocks yelling: "hey baby!" I wasn't laughing then, or now. Thank you to the 99.9% of you who are decent non-offending road warriors trying to do life, just like me.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Humor: My Favorite Moments In Literature.

About thirty years ago I stumbled upon a book, Return From Tomorrow, authored by George Richie, who claimed to have 'died', experienced stuff "on the other side" and returned to resume his life on earth. In the early '80's, this was rare and way out on the fringe. Aahh, just my kind of book. Richie was in the military in 1947, got pneumonia and 'died' for about forty minutes. While people were going nuts in emergency trying to revive this man, he went through that tunnel, saw the white light and met his spirit guide. For Richie, as a Christian, he identified this guide as Jesus Christ. Jesus began to walk George through a review of his life by asking him what he did about the life Jesus lived. George Richie, in his mid-twenties, had no idea how to answer this question, but I believe deserves an award for the best attempted BS session in literature.

George Richie sorts through his 'good deeds' list and throws out to Jesus, that he was an Eagle Scout - Period. Then the best sentence in modern literature: '(Jesus) didn't seem very impressed." I've practiced for years, honing my BS-ing skills, but, I don't think I'd have the courage to try and slick one over on Jesus Christ! I still laugh to think of that story.

But tonight, I found a runner-up to the above. An innocent book review. But, what a review! MacPhilly didn't like the book, at all. (This is exquisite):

What a waste of paper. Seriously. Some poor tree had to die for this piece of crap to live.

Other then having a bronze plaque made of this quote, to hang near my monitor, ever reminding me of the price for sloppy, lazy, or ill-conceived writing, there is nothing to add to this fine commentary.