whatcha ona bout girl??

whatcha ona bout girl??
A retrospective on the inner workings of love, flying pancakes, mensa disasters, dandelion cookies, number bending, super salt, bubblegum oysters, chicken spit, crystal kidneys, guerilla carrots, polychromatic tofu, paraphysics, tender vigilanties, black sand, phillastine placebos, wood soup, buttered shuttlecocks, apostrophe training, fish whips, bleeding speed, plastic fantastic lobster telephones, venus drug rehab, clowns on fire, kiosks on a leash, marshmello overcoats, bottled light, fried blood, unbridled hyperthyroidism, folding wine, amygdula tickling, fainting in coils, hamburgers for the apocalypse, plastic memes, and conjugal fritters.....well...the love parts true

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

3rd grade Haiku, The first affair, and the coming of scrumpalumpers!!

Every word of this is true and if anyone says otherwise they are a liar. Life is good….big smile.  I miss my kids though and hope they are treating each other well.  One day we will be able to have normal contact.  But for now that can’t be.  I hope one day they will understand.  Now I can’t take credit here.

This is the end
Beautiful friend

The last few months of school I met a girl named Mary. 
I asked someone about her six months before and they said she was dating someone….so I forgot about her.  Near the end of school they came back to me and said “said she was available..  I said “who?”  I had forgotten about her totally but asked her out anyway.  I had heard some bad things about her sleeping around….every time I saw her she was looking down….. at herself walk. She was definitely not my type.   The night we were supposed to go out I told a friend to tell her that I was too busy to go. She never got the message and showed up anyway. There were many signs we should not have been together….. I just ignored them. She fell asleep in the theater during our first date when we were watching silence of the lambs which is absolutely unbelievable and then I found out she actually cheated on her boyfriend that weekend just to be with me.  As I would find out later that was a regular theme for her…and all her friends.  Her friends were all that way too.  She ran (and still does) with a trashy crowd….birds of a feather.     
We moved to Roanoke to start a family and build a home.  Mary had gotten a job as a staff technologist at memorial and I had gotten a great job as chief technologist for a mobile operation. We lived with her parents for a few months while the house was being built. I was proud of myself because I had done many things inside the house to make it more like we wanted.  I built a rock wall by hand and our own pool.  I had skylights put in and wired it for sound. And the central vacuum I was very proud of.   Later on my neighbor Hal and I built a large screened in porch off the master bedroom……and the laundry shute…  (which she boarded up after I left). 
I tried my hand at painting……to put some art in the house…but I was no good!!  My sister got all of that talent. . 
Jennings was born and our life was fantastic.  My wife was working only three days a week had a Mercedes, a pool and a maid.  What more could you want?  Jennings will never appreciate how beautiful she was as a young child.  She was absolutely gorgeous. Such a joy..i wish I had the video…….scrumpalumpers!!!!!!!!!!!   Soon after that my wife quit her job at Carilion.  she told me it was because she did not want to work there ….the truth I found out later was that she was causing too much trouble with the male doctors by flirting with them….we had only been married a few months.. Truth is they didn't want her there because she was causing too much trouble. 
Then I got a great offer to help start another company…and I was going to be a part owner and things were great...... For about 5 months ...once i had done all the work to get them started ... They fired me and replaced me with some no name guy who could barely speak English.  No that’s not a joke.. I was stunned.  I told them they would not last 3 months..... I was happy to know they only lasted a few weeks. Stupid sucks.   I had to have a job…… and fast so i took a job that was three hours away …. it was the only one I could get. ... This meant I was only home on the weekends... I was sad but there wasn’t anything i could do. Little did I know that my wife was sneaking her boyfriend in after she put Jennings to bed while I was out of town..  That’s how I found out about the first affair.  I came home from being on the road and he was parked outside (at midnight) one night and I traced his car tags.  Sure enough when I mentioned the name to her…she knew him……he was a sales guy that she saw at work.  It got worse from there.  I got schooled ….and educated…..fast.  She was having an affair…..all her friends knew it and it was a great source of entertainment for them all (they were having affairs too). 
I noticed two things then…. my wife spent every cent I deposited and my daughter was growing apart from me. I spent nothing and every week Mary would say “we have no money.”  I found out why .... She was wasting it all. 50 dollar lunches for her friends, 300 dollar phone bills to her mom…  whatever I deposited she spent it ….down to the last penny.  I would have to borrow gas money sometimes just to get home.  Things got bad quickly.  I hadn’t realized that we were so different. When I met her she had been working in ultrasound for years ….but had nothing to show for it.  Where had all that money gone???? I was educated and she……..wasn’t.. and it was obvious.  She had gone to an xray program and then ultrasound….not college.  We could not have been more different. 
SIDEBAR: I have to put this in here.  Ready???? She has always lied and told the kids she went to college she just..........cant find her diploma.  hahahaha unbelievable.  She cant find her diploma.....Rrrriiiiiigggghhtt.  Yes mommy cant find her diploma.
back to the world.   I would eventually get my masters degree and she ….well…….had certainly …finished high school.  She eventually had to stop doing Jennings homework for her around 6th  grade because quite frankly …she couldn’t do it.  One of my favorite jokes was that she got honorable mention in Jennings third grade haiku contest!  Hahha she didn’t even place…she got….honorable mention.  By then I had published at least ten articles in various science journals and health care magazines.  I had even designed a radioactive syringe shield and had a prototype built but sadly nothing became of it.  Yeah I was proud of who I was.  But hard working, honesty and dedication proved to be worthless in the land of the vindictive.  It just makes you a target.  I remember begging my wife for 9 years…count them…9 years…to get our daughter to sleep in her own bedroom. I was told “everyone does this…..its normal Trey” and yes you read that right…our daughter slept with us every night until we divorced.  Of course then she made her sleep in the other room so she could have guys over.

For my daughter:  I know you have bad memories of an unhappy home life when we were all together.  I’m really sorry for that.  I was fighting a battle I couldn’t win with your mom.  I know that was upsetting.  I want you to know I have never worked so hard to fix something and I don’t believe for a second that our marriage failed because I didn’t try everything humanly possible.  I did.  The agony of it all was that it affected you so badly.  I still wish the best for you and hope one day you understand.

For my son:  I remember playing Godzilla xbox buddy and throwing Frisbee and football…fishing at the boat and watching school of rock, pee wee herman, shooting your gun and doing your back flip off the poles in E dock. ..dont you forget those good times !!!

Of our elaborate plans, the end

Of everything that stands, the end
No safety or surprise, the end
I'll never look into your eyes...again

Bring it…..bring that silver lining.  It may seem small sometimes but I would rather see it and share it than lose it.

POSTSCRIPT: Justin? Erica?  Really??  hahaha  think ill wait for steak.
POSTSCRIPT DEUX: I have to record this story because otherwise ill forget it! hehehe  I remember one time STING was on saturday night live....and i said something about the police..and she said... "STING was in the police?"..my jaw dropped.  Im old now but ......there is NO way...NO way you could have been in high school in 1981 and NOT have known that sting was in the police.  You would HAVE to be a full blown moron.  Literally..thats like not knowing who the president is, who your mother was or what school you went to.  I can understand if you were from an old blind woman from zimbabwe and didnt know ....but that would be like a high school girl in chicago today not knowing who beyonce is.......really.

The river rat, the country professors, and natural selection

Every word of this is true and if anyone says otherwise they are a liar. Colllege was busy...no doubt about it.  I learned alot...and I can honestly say i am proud of that effort.I hope my kids get some of that for themselves..... mmmmm.  Now I cant take credit here.

Good times
These are the good times

Good times indeed.  From that point on I started listening to National Public Radio every day which is still a great joy.  Liz story ( who I got to meet) , Andreas Vollenweider, Brahms ,Bach, Handel … the list goes on and on.  In the student government and being vice president of Sigma phi epsilon I was lucky enough to meet many famous people. G Gordon Liddy, Ralph Nader and others. My ex-wife of course has….. no clue who any of these people are... At the end of my freshman year Mike Harris and I traveled to Atlanta to meet the US team coach for kayaking. He was impressed with my ability in the kayak having never been in one before and I bought my first boat from him.   We trained hard and took 7th at nationals in 83.  From that point on Wildwater kayaking was a real focus …. So yeah I was a river rat. I was asked to try out for the US bobsled team but declined because kayaking was too fun….sometimes we would come in first …some times in third or so.  I was invited to the pan am games but declined. I was very proud when our homecoming queen at Ferrum asked if i would be her escort.. I accepted of course.    I was very dedicated with school and carried about 3.7 GPA.   I would stay in the library until they locked me in at night every wed so i would study all night until they opened in the morning.  So I had no choice but to study all night.  I am a driven person….true that. You have to work hard to beat me or keep me down or make me give up. I also gave campus tours was an RA and even took classes in the virgin islands.  Weekends were spent studying…… all day Saturday and Saturday night and all day Sunday……….but something was missing.
I would visit my friends at UVA and Tech …sometimes Radford and knew I was missing something from my college experience. I was lucky enough to get into Harvard for the semester before I transferred to wvu. Harvard was....... Fantastic.  Truly.  The caliber of academia and even the food was …off the chart.  By this time i had also completed my EMT.  This is hard to believe too but i would get next years text books and read them a year before the class even started.  So I already knew the subject a year in advance. 
West Virginia was tough on me. I was carrying 19 credit hours and was taking very tough classes.  I got approval to take freshman medical school classes as an undergrad….which I passed with ease.  My grades were still good but I was burning out.  I was studying so hard with no diversion..I literally bought some snuff one day…out of the blue…..just to have something to do.  That…..was a mistake…or should I say stupid…..I would be hooked on it for a long time…thankfully I quit……
I came home to Roanoke for a vacation and fell in love with a Greek girl. I needed a break from school and we decided to move in together.  She was much older than me and it never quite worked out.  I was delivering dominoes pizzas then….. I couldn’t afford a place to stay so I lived in an old house my dad owned.  No heat, no electricity, no water, no lights, no furniture…I slept in a sleeping bag on the wooden floor with a little space heater for the winter..  My high school buddy Leo offered me a sound engineer’s job at impact productions.  I took the job and soon I was directing my own commercials.   We shot 230 commercials my first year. I even worked with coach beamer at Va tech to produce his coaches show every week.
Eventually I knew I had to go back to college to finish. So I returned to Ferrum to finish up …..I got talked into playing bass with my college professors …..we were called the country professors ….god that was rough. Hahaha  I know that's hard to believe too because I hate country music as much as anyone can….but it didn't take any brainpower.  Real fun came when I got the bass gig for a band called without warning (van halens fans will remember).  By then I was playing violin and guitar.  Back at Ferrum I was studying hard again and feeling good …..I dated a girl Connie who eventually became a Surgeon.  During the summer I moved to Myrtle Beach but could only find work at Shoney's……which was just enough money to survive on  …..I met Rich and we had a great time playing volleyball and drinking on the beach. I should have married his sister when I had the chance.  My sister moved in with me down there but we really did not share too much in common which was sad…..and my fault.   I really enjoyed having her there but it was obvious we were on different life courses.  Back at Ferrum I would take the most important course of my life……. natural selection. Until that point in my life I was a convicted Christian. Like most I considered my faith unshakable.  But that would change.  I got accepted to the nuclear medicine program at UVA which was a dream come true. My sister moved in with me……At this point I was 26 years old. I had never found a woman that I wanted to marry and new that I would find one at UVA. Unfortunately…the one I ended up with was never a student there…which turned out to be a mistake.  At this point I was a master in school and knew that I would not even crack a book when it came to studying. I vowed to get through it and was successful even though I did not study hard and I was even class president.  I had spent so much time studying that school became a breeze.  I spent my free time reading physics books about relativity, god particles, evolution, dark matter, quantum theory… so yeah I had a real passion for my discipline…..and still do.  My education was very rewarding.  Not many people can say that.  I remember reading a fat medical dictionary from A to Z when I was in Puerto Rico.  (a great trip…I saw leather back turtles lay their eggs in the middle of the night). 

For my daughter:  College days were fun for me even though I studied way too much……and I am proud of you for taking on such hard subjects.  Don’t burn out if you can….pace yourself….you can do it.

For my son:  Be careful what you get talked into.  Don’t give in to pressure from others too easily.  Don’t be afraid to say no….real friends are hard to find so choose well. 

Good times
Leave your cares behind

Bring it……. Bring that path of personal success.  Times are not easy on people.  you have to feel good when you look in the mirror….even though many things did not turn out for the best.    When I think about being divorced…I mean free… I sleep good at night…..its when I think about my kids that I don’t. For those things that didn’t go my way.  I can honestly say I tried….   Fear of failure is not an option….but it does take two to tango.

Monday, December 24, 2012

The death fart, pitching quarters, and the mini kings dominion.

Every word of this is true, and if anyone says otherwise they are a liar. I left off with almost surviving junior high and being demoted to….freshmen in high school…or thereabouts. I was glad to be able to reach out recently to my daughter and son….even if only in a message to let them know I miss them.  Now I can’t take credit here.

The best is yet to come
And babe wont it be fine

The best is yet to come indeed. How can you top old blue eyes?  Man ……..he truly was….. the shit.
It was now time for high school.  In the summer months I would walk myself to school and walk back.  The spring and fall air was so great back then and the walk home would be slow and peaceful….stopping to play with dogs and whatever diversions I could find.   But during the winter months I would ride with my dad at seven in the morning.   We had to be ready to leave the house at seven. Which meant I had to be up at 6:30 even though class didn’t start until 9:05.  Our morning ritual was a nightmare ….my dad would wake up at 6:15 and take a shit that would make you vomit …..it stunk up every single inch of the whole house …..every single day. On top of that he would smoke cigarettes while he was taking a shit. It was like he farted in your face and then blew smoke in it at the same time.  You didn't need an alarm clock …..you woke up Coughing and gagging from the death fart.. My mom always made cinnamon toast which was very nice.  I would grab it and run outside to breathe. Truthfully I never understood until later why my mom woke my sister and I up differently.  I would hear her gently sit on my sister’s bed and say her name softly a few times.  When she was up my mom would bang on my door and yell “GET UP!!!!!!!” and walk off. I would get to school even before the doors were open…and when the janitor unlocked school I was the only person there.  I always wondered why we had to leave so early.  Years later my dad told me it was because he would go to work early…start the coffee then leave for several hoursand go have breakfast.….so the other employees would think he had been in early and was already hard at work… wonderful idea dad.  I mean …great lie dad….thanks for that bit of info. 
 In Junior high we would pitch quarters up against the wall….the closest pitch would win all the other quarters…when we ran out of quarters it dimes and nickels eventually…… pennies. ….it was only change but so much fun!!!!
I remember running the 50 yard dash with Dennis Dean..he was the 6 foot star of the basketball team…we tied at 5.0 sec……not the 40 yard….50!!!!  Not bad.  But in the 600 meter….i sucked. haha
I was lucky enough to have many sweet girls as girlfriends most of them I met at camp.  High school was a brand-new world.  I was no longer king of the hill but that didn't matter I was happy to be who I was.  Freshman year we would go to bonfire parties and hang out….girls bodies started to change….which made me wiggle…..and I never did any drugs.  I was always proud of that even to this day… I never smoked a single cigarette ever but I did every once in a while sneak a little bit of liquor from my dad's cabinet.  My freshman year I started wrestling. I was instantly a success and did it for many years with great satisfaction.  Senior year I was team captain but didn’t finish the season because I realized my grades had suffered long enough and I needed to get into college…..high school was too much fun…for nearly too long. I can't express how much fun my high school years were.  I was happy, busy, with many friends and many exciting things to do …the class of 1982 was very close….
When I was around15 something different happened to me musically. The radio was no longer …as good as it  had been….  It was boring and predictable. Sure there were cool songs, Reo speedwagon, foreigner, ac/dc…but I was getting a hunger for more than that.   I had just started playing bass and I found that the songs on the radio were too easy to play.  To put it bluntly pop music sucked..  I started listening to King Crimson, Bruford, Jeff Beck, Kazume watanabe, jean luc ponty, and the Dixie dregs.  This was real music far and above anything I was listening to before.  I would never look back…. country music was shit, pop music was shit, progressive Jazz was cool….. . And of course Led Zeppelin.  Eventually that changed too …..classical music  eventually took over…thanks to NPR.. 
I worked as a dishwasher at howard johnsons.  Right across from Lews…its gone now.    I would get out of school and rush there to bus tables and wash like a madman….  The dinner rush was a killer and I was soaked with sweat and food…..hehe.  Friday nights we would go see the rocky horror picture show (which I urge my kids to see in a theater)…and get drunk.  (which I don’t urge my kids to do)   There was a bar upstairs in crossroads mall called the Catawba emporium and they never carded anyone so we would go there and drink for hours and listen to bands….and then go down the hall and play video games in the arcade…  no xbox back then.  Summers we would go to lakeside amusement park (again I urge my kids to go online and find pictures) which was like a mini kings dominion.  We would get 5 dollars and stay all day and night.  Riding the roller coaster and eating popcorn or cotton candy for lunch and playing arcade games for hours. 
I was never able to afford a car so I borrowed my parents.  Which was good of them.  Later on my dad would buy me the cheapest cars he could find to ensure that I never got a date.  ( a datsun b210) If it cost more than 500 bucks it was not going home with us.   I should have been more thankful…but I was embarrassed beyond belief.  Most of my high school summers were spent being a lifeguard which I took very serious.  Once or twice I rushed in and truly did some good. Real suntan oil was too expensive…so I used motor oil.  I also worked on the electrical crew at the Roanoke Civic Center…. it was amazing to set up the stages and the rigging.  To put up lights and sound systems and be back stage just to get close to my idols was real magic for a boy.  I would spend hours in the record exchange looking at rare albums and listening to music and talking to other folks about bands and who I was playing with. .  My junior year I got a job at Howard Johnson's washing dishes.  I didn't mind the long hours because it helped pay for albums , drums, gas and ,,,,, beer.  My friends Chad and Joel would play a bigger role as time went on.  Senior year was a blast I was crowned snow king at our Christmas dance.  I had dated many girls but none was more influential than Valerie Patton.    We had gone tubing at Goshen Pass in Lexington the summer before as a crowd and senior year I asked her to go to the prom and she said yes. From then on I was hooked …..she was my high school sweetheart.  Beautiful and smart I was lucky to have her. My senior year something changed in me. I realized I would have to make something of myself and go to college.  I had been offered a contract to play with a traveling band…but knew that my future needed something more than sex drugs and rock and rool.   As captain of the wrestling team I knew I had to quit so I could focus on studying hard.   I was lucky enough to get into Ferrum College with bad grades….. Valerie went to Virginia Tech. Three weeks into my freshman year of college she dumped me and got engaged ….within a month… to the son of a jewelry store owner….which made me……not very happy. haha   But they never got married.  I have to confess I was crushed. From that point on my college life was filled with studying…. and I mean studying.   I had wasted enough of my academic life and it was time to turn the tide.  

For my daughter:  I sure hope everyone is treating you well.  You have been through a lot.  If you ever need inspiration …read the book I gave you…..pull from within and trust yourself.    I believe in you very much.

For my son:   the next few years are going to be fun…enjoy them.  But be careful….. you have a long road ahead and you don’t want to ruin things early by making bad decisions.   I trust you too.
The best is yet to come

Come the day you’re mine

Bring it ……… bring those old memories…good and bad.  Its ok.  I survived.  …….and you will too….big smile.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

The slow skate, Van Halen bliss, and star wars mania

Every word of this is true and if anyone else says otherwise they are a liar. Right now that statement has little meaning without a reference.  The reason for such a disclosure isn’t apparent……but in a few years…I mean blogs…it will be clear.  Now I can’t take credit here.
My dad finally had a stable job and he decided to move everything back to Roanoke where his family was.  This was great I got to see all my old friends because we moved back into the same house we lived in before.   I was so lucky….  To see all my old friends again..it was great!Around 1976 to about 1979… many things happened .  My life changed quite a bit which is no surprise…… First I must say that Church camp had always been an important part of my life and I had gone for many years but now it took on a new meaning. I was spending more time with friends that went to church and and camp and that really gave me backbone.  I was eventually lucky enough to go to Puerto rico to help victims of hurricane hugo with a church group.  The lessons I learned there stay with me and it was guidance I needed and close friendships that were not out in the real world…… or at home.  And secondly I discovered music when I was in seventh grade. I can't express how important this was in my life. Ted Nugent, Foghat, and of course Van Halen blew everything away. My son understands ...atomic punk...on fire....light up the sky......good god.
Camp Bethel gave me direction and course and I was happy with who I was  and knew I would be a moral man. The direction I needed was something I did not get it home and so I was glad to have it and embraced it.
That is also the year that Star Wars hit the theater.  I can't express how exciting this was to go to a theater and see the movie on the big screen .. In fact when the movie came we would all get together and try to find out ways we could get to the theater to watch it ……we would watch it once, twice, even three times in a day.. ..sneaking back in….. Our parents would drop us off at 12 o'clock and we would watch the movie three times in a row and they would pick us up late that night. This went on for months. The movie had such a positive message and it was such great fun to watch on the big screen.  Back then there were only 2 movie theaters.  One at crossroads mall and one at towers mall (both of which are gone now).
Summer days we would spend climbing tinker mountain and spray painting our names on hay rock.  A few of us would go without asking parents of course and be gone all day.  A back pack with poptarts, cheese crackers and a jug of coolaid to split 3 ways.  Looking down on lord Botetourt high school from the mountain top and carvins cove on the other side…eagles swirling on the wind below…it was satisfying as a boy to make the trip. 
 I would spend lots of time at the roller skating rink on Herschberger Rd …the disco lights and loud music really made a Saturday afternoon in the winter.  Skating slow and holding hands with girls.   I have to admit at this point in time my physical prowess was impressive.  I could skate better, run faster,  jump higher play harder than anybody.. Kids three or four years old me were nothing…. I could wipe them clean.  At that point I joined the swimming team at Tinkerview pool…and we would train indoors at hotel Roanoke….all winter… Before I was done with the swim team I must of had at least 100 Ribbons ….first places …second places …third-place and always on the podium.  It reminds me of my daughter and gymnastics.  At 15 I was in the championships for tennis at the club.   I even went to Canada to go skiing!!!  Man that was great!  I even got to use some French!
For all my running around I was still very much determined to be a good person, a good boy, a good man. Some Saturdays we would go to Copperfields  (which is gone now) and dance like the adults do.  Haha. Only teenagers were allowed in and we would dance with the disco lights going and the music real loud…  Michael Jackson, Rod stewart, heatwave.   I always won the dance contests when I went there and that was such a great feeling to have everybody watch you and to know that you entertained them.   I have always been comfortable speaking in public or on stage.  I set the bar high for myself and yes I did have a temper every once in a while when I did not meet my own expectations.  I never liked disappointing myself.  School was still a struggle for me as I did not care about Isosceles triangles.  In eighth grade my flag football team was in the championships for the school and we crushed the opposition…. I was unstoppable and proud. Baseball was ok but I was not as good a player as my son is….I miss seeing him.  Youre great buddy!!  Even in basketball …much better than I was.
That’s when I started developing many close friendships.. Jody Emick's dad was a judge, Jack Frailin's dad was a doctor, Joel wood's dad was a psychologist,  and Johnny Frailin's dad was an architect.  It became clear that I was the kid from the other side of the tracks as I said..   their houses were bigger and nicer and it was obvious that they came from money….. and I didn't.  I have to say that never bothered me..it was just a fact..i was rough around the edges.  Rather I was proud of bootstrapping my life. 
Those were the three big influences on my life at that point …Church camp, music and the movie Star Wars. Going to camp bethel every summer really shaped me it gave me a lot of background morals that I did not get it home.  It was a very powerful place full of very kind sweet people and lots of fun.  So yes the church shaped me in many ways. 
 In sixth grade I would go to crossroads Mall and would look at the stereos for hours and hours just dreaming of having one.  I saved up all my money and bought the biggest one that I could.  I would place the speakers 2 feet apart facing each other and I would sit between them and crank up the volume until my head would vibrate.  If it wasn’t loud…it sucked.  The parents made me buy headphones.  Hehehe.  I can't express how important this time was for me….. to discover music as such a powerful thing in my life.  Aerosmith, bad company, Boston, styx, rush, yes….. In seventh grade I went to Jack Frailin's house and his brother had a drum set. He couldn’t play it and I spent every dime I had just to buy it from him.  I never had a lesson but within one year I kid you not I was as good a drummer as anything you could hear on the radio. Truthfully I was fantastic…. I could play any song.  Period…. I was very proud of that ….at such a young age with no lessons I seemed to know how to play automatically.  My parents however never acknowledged that. I never heard them say once that they were proud of me or that I did a good job or that it was amazing that I could play so well. They just didn't give a shit.  My mom would just walk in and yell stop when she got home.  Waving her arms with a disgusted look on her face. It was disappointing…but not surprising.
When my mom got upset she would spank me with this big wooden spoon.  But one day I remember clearly all that changed…I was getting bigger.  I believe I was about 14 and had said something that my mom obviously didn’t like.  She raced to the kitchen drawer and whipped out the spoon and starting running toward me.  When she got close to me I remember cocking my arm back ….planting my feet and rotating my shoulders…..my fists as hard as rocks.  She stopped dead in her tracks….the spoon high in the air…and shock on her face.  I was …..not playing…one more step and I would have knocked her unconscious. 
Oh yeah…I forgot to  mention…… I had Judo lessons……….they paid off.
We had not been close but that was surely a turning point for both of us.  I remember years later my mom screaming at my dad “either he goes …….or I go!!!!”   Did I mention there wasn’t much love in the house?  Hehehe

For my daughter:  I will always regret that you never got to see your mother and I happy together.  I truly tried..with everything I had….for many years…the truth is…your mother never tried….at all……to make our relationship work….not once…..ever.  The bad times you remember when you were young was frustration from me after years of exhaustion of trying to reach your mother….and failing.

For my son:  You were a rock buddy…you did so well during that period that was hard on our family.  I’m sorry for you too.  You have been through a lot. 

Bring it………bring the truth..its coming….mistakes and apologies too. 

POSTSCRIPT:  Incidentally the exgf gets some applause….  She texted that she made a mistake and would do anything to fix it.  With the quote “please take me back”.  …..several times…which was sweet but Ive been through it before….. wo its best just to let it go.  

The paper route, out after dark and painting from a rope.

Every word of this is true and if anyone else says otherwise they are a liar. Still happy in ma skin. Just getting started with explaining some premarital history for my kids who never got to hear about their dads past.  There is much still to tell and this is just backdrop….for the moment.

Now I cant take credit here.
I want to fly like an eagle
To the sea
Fly like an eagle
Let my spirits carry me

Fly like an eagle indeed.  When I was in fifth grade ..around 1975…my parents told me we were moving to Chatham... It was a very difficult time but I knew things would be okay…. I would have to give up my friends but I knew that I would make it and this was a new adventure..I still remember moving everything into a u haul van for the long slow trip.   My dad had gotten a job as a food broker and we needed to move closer to where he worked because he was traveling two hours to work every day and 2 hours back... I have to say that my time in Chatham was amazing.  I really enjoyed myself and there was much to see and do.  It was a small town with a main street courthouse and hotdogs for 35 cents in the trolley car diner.  Gum was still a penny. Only two sodas…coke or pepsi…diet sodas hadn’t been invented yet!   I urge my kids to go there just to see where I grew up.  On the radio was David Bowies song fame, Elton John, and the Doobie brothers…. And oh ….yeah…music was starting to peak my interest.
I was still raising myself but there was a lot to do in such a new place so I was always busy. We moved into this very big old house right in front of hargrave military academy and I had a very huge bedroom, big wooden staircase, tall ceilings and floors that creaked with every step.  The town was very quaint and small and I soon got a paper route.  The town was predominantly black in nature but on main street lots of little shops and I rode my bike every day on my paper route all through town..  I would get home from school grab my bike and ride down to the courthouse where I would load up with papers to travel all around town getting home after dark and after dinner…. It took about three hours to do every single day ……rain or shine, cold or hot. Sick or not.  Sunday morning I would have to be up before 6 and it would take all morning to deliver all the papers in town because they were heavy and my route was bigger..  My mom got a job at the local private girls school and I was home by myself when she was not there.  On weekends I would go to Chatham Hall the local private girls school and ride horses as I had riding lessons and that was a lot of fun…. I watched just a little bit of television…and by then I was losing interest in television anyway. Especially because I got my first real girlfriend kiss…. Hahaha Julie sanders.  The military academy principles daughter no less.  ( hey ..I aimed high.)  We did everything together ..much to her dads disappointment. 
Being on my own I developed certain kinds of hobbies that were lots of fun ….. I used my money from the paper route and bought a CB radio and then I got a chemistry set, an electric science set, a train set, model rockets and then I would buy comic books at this little gas station where I could play pinball.  During the summer I would go up to this little creek to catch tadpoles and crawdads. I would spend the whole day there making dams in the stream.  My parents never seemed concerned about what I was doing or where I was and I would show up frequently past dark …way past dinner. Sometimes I would stay out till 10 or 11 o'clock at night with no supervision at all. But no one would ask where I was or what I was doing.  Truth is they didn’t give a shit.  That summer Jody Emick and I would go to tennis camp and my cousin Steven would come down and we would play together. I looked up to him as the big brother I never had. By this time I had started building models of spaceships from Star Trek or cars, battleships or planes.  It doesn’t sound exciting but for me it was.  There were few children to play with so my time was spent tearing things apart to see how they worked..or building something.  It was very satisfying and a great way to learn about things. 
I was never told until years later but at this time something very bad happened to my sister.   she was …taken advantage of….by a guy that lived down the street.  I don't even think my parents knew at the time.. But the bottom line was that my mom was not careful enough to let my sister go down to where he lived…and he had FIVE brothers…. .. I do blame myself for not being more attentive to her …it was not her fault…. but I do blame my mother for being not smart enough to realize she should not have let my sister go there. 
I was able to do things physically the other kids could not.   I could jump higher, run faster, and longer than anyone else.   I was very proud of my abilities...and still am.   I was always first picked when it came to football.  Always.  I could …and did ….run for a touchdown no matter how many people were trying to tackle me ……every single time.  …. I was unstoppable physically….even with kids 3 and four years older than me.  Even better….bring em on.  One play….kick off..…touchdown.  It was great to play running back again in semipro as an adult…fantasy come true. 
I built my own pinewood derby car (dad didn’t help at all) and came in second at the championships….I don’t think my dad even went.
One time I remember my dad tied a rope around my waist and lowered me off the roof with a can of paint and a brush because it was too high for the ladder to reach from the ground.  So I painted the outside of our houses third floor….suspended in mid air.
We were there are only two years when my parents decided it was time to move back to Botetourt county..
For my daughter:  to watch you in gymnastics was …amazing.  It was so much fun to take you to practice and watch.  I was too proud to leave.  I will never understood why your mother would take you and drop you off then come back when it was over to pick you up.  
For my son: You are the king big stuff.  The crackshot with a bb gun.  Fweeeepss……..ster!!!!!!!!!!  Miss bein on the boat with you!!!!  Playing grand theft auto and watching led zeppelin…..  big smile
Fly to the revolution
Bring it……that epiphany….that catharsis….that shakabuku…..hehehe  I miss seein my kids.  But more importantly I know they miss having a dad they could count on.  I know how they feel.

Honeysuckle lunch, A Kenny burger, and the antennae adjustment of terror

Every word of this is true and if anyone else says otherwise they are a liar.  The blog has changed….big smile…..My thoughts on the love train are much more relaxed these days… which is just fine….there are other long overdue priorities…  My kids deserve a lot more than they ever got from me so there is much to say, much to reveal, much to apologize for….and so I have to start at the beginning…before they were here.  But that will change once I stop blowing my own horn.  Because a real man knows it’s not about him but his family too…and I miss them very much.
Now I cant take credit here. 
Youre just a young child
You been runnin awhile
You saw the bright lights
And honey they amazed you
Brite eyes indeed.  I understood much about my parents by looking at their past.  Understanding why they were the way they were.  Life was tough for them.  But it was revealing to me as to why I am the way I am….  what motivates me and why its so sad that my kids never got what they deserved. Hopefully my children too will understand more about themselves through their mom and dad….. So here tis……….part 2 of many more chapters to come.
When I was very young my backyard was an apple orchard and I used to go pick apples, peaches and raspberries there….before ikenberry orchards became just another subdivision.    Tinker mountain was always in the distance…and we could drink honeysuckle for lunch... life in the summer was very fun and I was always outside playing.. Remember back then there was no real TV like there is now…. there were just three channels and not much for kids to watch. There was no cable ….just antennas on the roof to get a signal.  My dad used to have me stand on the chimney top to adjust the antennae while he held my feet.  I was not pleased.  Truth was he wasn’t man enough to do it himself so he bullied me into it.  I remember we had video of him trying to put me into a cannon in Lexington..he was having the time of his life laughing, trying to scare me and I was just a kid freaking out. I had my favorite shows Gilligans Island the Brady Bunch and definitely Star Trek was my favorite.. The only time there were cartoons on TV was Saturday morning between eight and 12... I would play with matchbox cars and marbles or jacks (if you even know what that is)  and sometimes just make little rivers in the mud.  In the spring I would make my own kites and fly them until you could barely see them they were so far away. 
Roanoke back then in 1969 was nothing like today.  No Wendys, burger king, or Hardees.  There was a chain called Kenny burger.  We would go and get a Kenny burger and French fries.  ( bobbie Jos in salem still has them and I urge my kids to go get one and see what was the only fast food around except mcdonalds.)  There was no valley view mall, walmart, or even tanglewood mall.  Only crossroads mall and the Roanoke salem plaza.  The music was Stevie wonder,  Gladys night and the pips, and the beach boys.
I remember my dad didn’t spank me in public.  Instead he would take his class ring, spin it around on his finger and hit me flat square on the top of my head.  The pain was so bad and quick, you stopped whatever you were doing immediately because everything went black and you couldn’t focus.  His other attention getter was to twist the inside of my upper arm so hard I couldn’t speak.  It paralyzed your mouth and body so he could just drag you around wherever he wanted by his fingers with your eyes rolled up in the back of your head until he saw fit to let go.  Eventually the blood came back, your eyes would open...and you realized.....oh....we're at the car now.....and you didnt remember the last 5 minutes.
I want to pause here to say something about my parents. My mom was a nice woman she cooked, she cleaned but I remember coming home many times from school and finding her not there. So there were many days where I would be by myself when I got home from school and I'm not sure where she was but I know that she wasn't home. I would get a snack and then go outside. My dad was …on his best day an absent father….and an asshole when he was there. He would come home frequently drunk or not come home until very late. My mom would fix a plate for him and he would not show up for dinner.  I would ask where he was and mom would say she didn’t know….and she would put it in the oven for him to eat later but he did come home he would say things to me like “what have you done for your country today?”   Are you serious????  I was 9 years old.   When he showed up for dinner he always asked that…then it was onto “did you do everything I told you to????”  Which meant ….did you do everything around the house that needed to be done because…. he wasn’t going to do any of it…….after that he just got pissed off because I couldn’t answer “what did you learn in school today?”  I always brought home bad grades but my parents never did anything about it.   They would just look at the grades and say as long as you tried and you did your best.   I would bring home a B a bunch of C’s  sometimes D’s sometimes an F…..or 2 hehehe ..  Later on my dad told me he failed 7nth grade ….on purpose …..so he could play basketball again in junior high school….  Are you serious? OMG!!!! Do you REALLY think ANYONE would believe that????  I got a similar story from him years later.  My dad said he didn’t understand where I had learned to do so many things…. electrical, plumbing, masonry, carpentry, spark plugs, carburetors…I told him I raised myself. He answered….”I was never around because I wanted you to learn those things for yourself.”  OMG!!!  What horse shit!  You were drunk on the golf course ya moron!!!  hahaha
 I was growing up on my own with no guidance but happy and proud of who I was...  My parents struggled financially when the family was young..  My mom would clean churches and the first job I remember my dad having was night manager at a paper plant.. Then he tried hardware sales.  I'm sure it was hard on their marriage....We would spend summer afternoons at the Botetourt swim club….the car had no air conditioning and there was only am radio.  I would swim all day,  play shark, and dive….  My dad entered us in the father son golf tournament and we won our age bracket.  I remember it very well…..in fourth grade hitting my first ball off the first tee….. so hard …..the club of my driver flew off and went down the fairway like a rocket…..

For my daughter:  The coming blogs may start out talking about me but you will soon see it is for you and your brother.  I miss you very much. J and you deserve much from me.  I understand why you won’t speak to me…I would be upset too.. …my dad wasn’t very caring (that’s a generous assessment) and so I had always hoped not to be like him and be there for you.  It was easy to cut him out of my life as he wasn’t a father anyway.  Trust me I learned a lot from that ….and it pains me to know that I never thought I would lose the fight to be in your life.
For my son:  Hey buddy I’m so sorry I can’t be there for basketball and baseball.  You know if I had ANY choice I would be there every single day practicing with you.
Brite eyes don’t cry
Bring it………bring brite eyes.  I’m sure you can relate.  I am not bitter about the past.  I am not stuck there…. And no I don’t need to “let it go”.  On the contrary, I’m proud of who I am.   …..trust me.   I hope my kids understand that they should be proud of who they are…..in spite of all the bad things that have happened.  And yes of course …I have always loved you two and still do…….very much….big smile.

The warmth of the sun, dragging truth, and the bankrupt bluff bank.

Every word of this is true and if anyone else says otherwise they are a liar.  It feels good to be back in bloggy land. Thanks for welcoming me back!!! Truth is ah probably missed yall more than you missed me hehe. Na miss mo ba ko?? Malaki ngiti!......till now ma blog has been a taste o sweet and sour chicken. I have to say... I am happy to have shared , preached, confessed ..... And even when its not been grounded its been rewarding however hard to digest or unravel for the unsuspecting visitor. I have laid to rest much here and am grateful for unslung burdens. Success like that…. It soothes like the warmth of the sun.
So now there are fresh concerns to be fleshed out...... Ones long over due..... Debts to be paid. Damn the costs..Sometimes the truth has to be dragged into the light..... And damn the fools who mistakenly think i will just…. roll over …again…….  I have nothing left to lose …..or give…. and that…… makes me angry for good reason. 

Now i cant take credit here.

You better make your face up in
Your favorite disguise
With your button down lips and your
Roller blind eyes
With your empty smile
And your hungry heart
Feel the bile rising from your guilty past

Run like hell indeed. Those that know me best know I don't bluff. It takes a lot to get me to give up but the bluff bank is bankrupt.
Those that know me the least are my children. To them I owe much... And much of this blog will be dedicated to helping build relationships torn apart by divorce. Im sure you can relate. Broadcasting bout the love train can take a back seat breather. Its my blog but its not always about me.  Joy is in the giving……

Side bar: the gf thing was going along fine…..  until she made a stop in Hawaii on the way home …..to see an exboyfriend for three days....who was married.  WTF is it with you women who just cannot be faithful.  Suko nako.


Many more of these stories can be found at www.asktrey.blogspot.com I grew up on Peachtree Drive in Roanoke. I take that back I was born on Peachtree dr.  We lived there my mom, dad and I until I was about four years old. I have very few memories of being on Peachtree drive but I do remember going to see our friends the Argabright’s. I was always glad to go to the Argabright's because the boys Shannon, Marty, and Will had this great slot car racing track and it was huge. I did not have big toys like that and wondered why. This was about 1964 to 1967. Life was very simple I do not have many memories of that time other than going shopping from time to time At the Roanoke Salem plaza. This is a shopping mall in Salem and at Christmas we would get to ride on the train which was really a golf cart with red and green decorations pulling some wagons.  There was a Woolworths store there that had fish way in the back and I would go and stare at the fish for hours while my mom shopped. There was a little toy section and I would go look at the boxes for hours and hours. Dreaming of having something to play with.  It was only one small isle of toys but it was the whole world for me. I had no friends that I can think of and I spend most of the time at the house with my mom in a very small two bedroom house and there was no real television…and only black and white… no TV at all for kids... the only entertainment was just little simple things like blocks of wood and simple books. When I was five years old we moved to the house in Botetourt my mom and dad had built. The neighborhood was still building and they were new houses coming up all the time and there I made my first friends and went to kindergarten. Things seemed okay , dad went to work,  mom stayed home and I would go to first grade in a very small school. Back then Troutville elementary was a collection of trailers and a main building with a gym and the cafeteria was…… a small room in the basement.  Joy was in the form of pizza or hotdogs for lunch or jump rope and hopscotch at recess. 
We only had am radio and then of course only in the car.  No tapes, cds or even 8 track tapes back then. But the music was still magic…carol king, three dog night…Chicago. Could it get any better? …don’t answer that…..because it didn’t really.   Not complaining that we only had one  real station…wrov. At least that’s all I remember. 
I was a busy little kid running and playing and sometimes getting into trouble….. my parents weren't bad to me..... But there was definitely something missing as they never seemed to really take an interest in anything I did. I was a very inquisitive little boy but whenever I asked my parents questions about things they never seem to have any of the answers and seemed bothered that I would ask them questions.   Like I was in the way . I know times were hard for them ……the new family getting started but I never got the affection  that a little child should. So from a very very young age I learned to depend on myself. My sister came along when I was five and I have to say that I never treated her as a big brother should.,. which I regret deeply.  I was off doing my own thing playing with rocks and sticks and mud and rain and running. Riding my bike along the street  for hours…. making little jumps and ramps. I was always having fun even if it was by myself. I was a well mannered boy in public but I was given to mischief and playing pranks. But I guess the biggest thing was that I was in charge of my world. My mom used to take me to the YMCA for swimming lessons when I was six. She would leave me there with all the other inner-city kids and some of them did not even have bathing suits so they would go naked. My dad would sometimes buy me warm cashews from kmart as a atreat.  Over the years I would form many relationships Many of them very close…. Jack Fralin's dad was a doctor, Johnny Fralins's dad was an architect, Jody Emicks was a judge, joel woods was a psychologist…. My best friend eventually turned out to be Chad…we had much in common….his dad had abandoned him as well.  One thing was certain …….I was the kid from the wrong side of the tracks..
Red light: None of this is an excuse for not being a good dad.  I own my mistakes.

Green light: This is an attempt to reach my children to let them know about the father they never got.  I would love to know what I missed as well.

For my daughter:  Im sorry I have not been there for you.  It hurts me not to be the good father you deserve.  But chin up baby girl.

For my son:  Don’t be a poser.  Guitar hero is not playing guitar. Nothing will take the place of being proud of your own achievements. 

You better run

Bring it......... Bring what you can. But bring your best. You can’t fix the past....but you can repair the future.

Postscript:  I want to explain that any contact I have with my kids is an opportunity for my exwife to steal more money from me that she doesn’t deserve.  I have overpaid her for years and it’s no secret she is financially irresponsible and the cost to my kids and myself have been enormous.  I would rather die than over pay her one more cent. Those that know me best …….know……..I don’t bluff.

Postscript Deux: The gf thing turned out worse…and more of the same.  Two weeks after the Hawaii trip she gave her number out to another married man who promptly texted and asked if she was available for coffee that weekend..hahaha so that was the end of that.