“At a certain moment a doctor will determine that my brain has ceased to function and that, for all intents and purposes, my life has stopped.

“When that happens, do not attempt to instill artificial life into my body by the use of a machine. And don’t call this my ‘deathbed.’ Call it my ‘bed of life,’ and let my body be taken from it to help others lead fuller lives.

“Give my sight to a man who has never seen a sunrise, a baby’s face or love in the eyes of a woman.

“Give my heart to a person whose own heart has caused nothing but endless days of pain.

“Give my blood to the teenager who has been pulled from the wreckage of his car, so that he might live to see his grandchildren play.

“Give my kidneys to one who depends on a machine to exist from week to week.

“Take my bones, every muscle, every fiber and nerve in my body and find a way to make a crippled child walk.

“Explore every corner of my brain. Take my cells, if necessary, and let them grow so that someday a speechless boy will shout at the crack of a bat and a deaf girl will hear the sound of rain against her windows.

“Burn what is left of me and scatter the ashes to the winds to help the flowers grow.

“If you must bury something, let it be my faults, my weaknesses and all my prejudice against my fellow man.

“Give my soul to God. If by chance you wish to remember me, do it with a kind deed or word to someone who needs you. If you do all I have asked, I will live forever.”

Yesterday, we had a small group of friends over to our house, and celebrated Thanksgiving.

There are many friends that were on my mind, and I have not had the inclination to call all of them, I did Facetime with a few of them that I have been particularly missing.

As Kirk and I prepared our meal, we all gathered in the kitchen and reminisced about some of the Thanksgivings in our past.

We talked about those more unfortunate than us, and we very grateful for our lives, the blessings in it, and the people that surround us. We talked about purpose, and that if you have said “no” to one idea, that Spirit still has work for you to do. That no matter what you do, that somehow Spirit expresses through you.

Many thanks to all of you for being in my life, for blessing me, and I thank you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So, Imagine that the company you work for held a poll, and asked everyone if they thought it would be a good idea to put a soda machine in the break room. The poll came back, and the majority of your colleagues said “Yes”, indicating that they would like a soda machine. Some said no, but the majority said yes. So, a week later, there’s a soda machine.

Now imagine that Bill in accounting voted against the soda machine. He has a strong hatred for caffeinated soft drinks, thinks they are bad you you, whatever. He campaigns throughout the office to get the machine removed. Well, management decides “OK, we’ll ask again” and again, the majority of people say “Yes, lets keep the soda machine.”

Bill continues to campaign, and management continues to ask the employees, and every time, the answer is in favor of the soda machine. This happens, lets say… 35 times. Eventually, Bill says “OK, I’M NOT PROCESSING PAYROLL ANYMORE UNTIL THE SODA MACHINE IS REMOVED”, so nobody will get paid unless management removes the machine.

What should we do???

Answer: Fire Bill and get someone who will do the fucking job.

Bonus: Bill tells everyone that he was willing to “Negotiate”, to come to a solution where everyone got their payroll checks, but only so long as that negotiation capitulated to his demand to remove the soda machine.

Bill is a fucking jackass.

-Anonymous

1/2 medium yellow onion, finely diced
1 1/2 tablespoon fresh lime juice; (from about ½ lime) more to taste
6 medium Roma tomatoes
3 fresh jalapeno or Serrano chilies, halved lengthwise, stemmed & seeded
1 clove garlic, peeled
1 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt; more to taste

1. In a small bowl, soak onion in the lime juice for about 15 minutes.

2. In a dry, heavy skillet (preferably cast iron) over high heat “roast” the tomatoes, Chile laves, and garlic clove until charred on all sides, about 2 to 5 minutes for garlic, 8 to 10 minutes for the chiles and 12 to 15 minutes for the tomatoes> Pulse in a blender; the mixture should remain slightly chunky.

3. Transfer the “tomatoes” to a serving bowl and add the onion, lime juice, cilantro and salt. Taste and add more salt or lime juice if needed. Serve immediately or cover and store for up to a week

There is just so much to do after one is finished with an ALC Lifecycle ride, so many things that got put off because one was training or packing or all the many things one must do to get ready for  a ride.

So slowly our life gets back to normal, and all of those other things get done…

until next year.

We rode to Calistoga,

I was thinking what? That is one heck of a hill. And it was… but it wasn’t the hill I was thinking of, so it wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be, but it was still a climb and my legs are sore today.

We started out in Windsor, like usual, and went over Chalk Hill, I know that theoretically I supposed to be getting better at this, but my breathing practice still sucks and I’m out of breath when I get to the top. Maybe I need to Add more cycling to the equation, I didn’t do the Monday ride this week because I went to work instead, because we going to the City on Wed, Thu. & Friday to celebrate our 12th anniversary.

Maybe I really need to get that extra ride in, or add some spin classes. I must get better at this cycling stuff.

I do feel like I am getting better, as much as I am complaining right now, I am riding faster and I am riding up the hills a little faster though it is not by very much.

Anyway at the top of Chalk Hill, we all caught our breath and then we were off, instead of turning north to Alexander Valley and Geyersville, we went East on HIghway 128, and turned off on Franz Hill or something like that. We do that to get off the road that has the most cars, and so the Training Ride Leaders can torture us with more hills.

What sometimes seems like a nice quiet ride in the country, is really a climb of 2 to 3% percent, which is not much, but it sure makes you feel like you are being lazy, because you are not going very fast. Any way we got to a point where we all stopped and rested, and then Robert said “okay time to start climbing hills” (insert moans here). And then he left, we followed soon after.

Well we started, and we thought, oh this ain’t much, and then another hill, and we thought, this ain’t much, and then another hill, and we thought this ain’t much. Then we saw the hill and after we climbed that, we thought, whew, were glad that is over, then we looked around and I said,” I don’t think that was it” and we look ahead, and just around the curve one could see that the road continued up. well that was the beginning, and that was the hill, and it was a hill, it was a tough climb, and I have to admit I stopped a few times to catch my breath. But I RODE THE WHOLE WAY, NO WALKING.

But we were at the top, and it was all downhill into Calistoga now, and it was a nice lunch at the Palisades. and then north on 128 back to where we started.

My Partner is dealing with putting his mom in assisted living, she has Alzheimer’s and well she can’t live by herself anymore.

We would move to her house, but it is too long to commute, and we both have jobs, and well to be honest, she needs more care than we can give.

We have no experience bathing a woman if she would even allow us that.

She has enough memory to know that she knows us, but she doesn’t quite get the relationships right. She thinks my partner is her Husband, and that he is my dad, though she remembers that I am not her son.

But what it all reminds me of is my dad… My dad went to assisted living a year ago, the same week this year, Ms Vick called the paramedics and took herself to the hospital because of chest pains. Once the doctors talked to her they said “this woman cannot live by herself anymore”

Well, we we very lucky in that my dad checked himself into assisted living, he was the one who said he can’t live by himself.

We were also very lucky in that, My brothers and I were able to share the burden of the decisions that needed to be made and the work that needed to be done. I am very thankful to my brothers for all that they did, and I feel so blessed that I had them to share this difficult time with.

When I talk to my partner about what he is dealing with I try to remember that, and I try to be supportive in any way that that I can.

Last night I went to my first art class…

It was about just letting the brush express what was inside you…

Naturally I had difficulty with that, so at some point I just discarded the brush and painted with my hands. I’m so glad that we were painting with watercolors.

But discarding the brush for me, I felt it was a breakthrough, I was able to express more freely, it was not about painting objects, though all my paintings are of objects of some type, I just want a more abstract feeling or expressive feeling about them.

I’m not totally happy with what I was painting, but I was more satisfied at the end of the class than I was at the beginning.

Next week another class

 

Promise to be back soon, I need to get back riding writing again.

I am back riding again actually, I bought a new bike and I have been riding on Saturdays and Mondays, getting ready for another ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles.

I am also doing art again, I am working on a new piece called “The Dance” something abstract and new for me.

well that is all for now

 

I was still stationed at Fort Lewis, but Dennis had been transferred, I was still friends with Gaylord, but it wasn’t the same.

Gaylord had always been in a different squad, and he was more Dennis’ friend than mine, besides it was Gaylord who got those kisses. Sometimes we move on, holding onto a friend only as long as we need them, or just because he was a friend of a friend, and when that friend is gone, the relationship changes.

Even though I was attracted to Dennis, (and despite the previous post) I wasn’t at that point where I knew I was gay, I just thought I was one of those guys who wasn’t interested in girls, men are just more attractive I thought.

I wasn’t a drinker, and I didn’t hang out with drinkers (well we were all still 18-20, and Washington’s drinking age was 21)

I didn’t think anything about not being interested in girls, I had friends who were into really fat girls, (he said you could poke anywhere, it didn’t matter) and friends who were onto really skinny girls and I had friends that you never heard them talk about girls at all, I just didn’t think about it.

I was an E-4 now, and I had my own group of privates to worry about. I wasn’t in charge technically, but you watched out for your own squad members, helping them out, showing them the ropes, trying not to let them get into to much trouble.

I had this young man in my squad; his last name was Arnold, in the service you tend to call each other by your last name. Arnold and I became buds, I wanted to tell you a story of how we had some sexual tension between us, but the truth is, I think I just liked him, he was just an easy presence, no drama, no hang ups, no getting on soap-box and preaching.

He was cute, light brown hair, and a scattering of freckles, a good build, not like Dennis, however I remember that he had wide shoulders. He had his own personality, well because he was his own man. He was a quiet man; nothing dramatic, simple tastes and we had lots of quiet times. I don’t even remember what we did most of the time, we just hung out.

He had a motorcycle; I think it was a Honda 250 or 350, something simple, nothing flashy. He loved to go for rides on it, and he loved to take me with him. I was still pretty nervous, because I thought he might take off like Dennis would, but he never did.

We just rode; we just rode wherever the road took us. For some reason, he didn’t like to use my name he liked calling me “Boss”.

“Hey Boss, let’s go for a ride”, he say after work. So if it weren’t raining very hard, we would throw on jackets and go for a ride, maybe to the pizza parlor, maybe to a lake.

I wished that it would have lasted longer, but duty called and I was transferred to Fort Bliss, Texas, to learn a new MOS, and then off to Germany.

Sure, we would use my car once in awhile, if it was gonna get rainy. But mostly we saved my car for when we had somewhere to go.

It was a simple time, one without worries, I was still young and I wasn’t worried about my not “dating girls” or my lack of interest.

I wasn’t at that point where I knew I was gay, I just thought I was one of those guys who wasn’t interested.

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