“I know all about you…”

Have you ever heard that phrase before.?  Sure.  I think we all have at one time or another.  I wrote an earlier blog concerning this, but for some reason, I hit the wrong key, and it did not save, but no problem.  Probably had to edit it anyway and say a few less things.  I have the tendency to keep writing, and one of these days, I will begin the book I have always wanted to write.

So I heard this statement this morning from my house manager who first asked me if he and I were okay with each other, and I admitted that there was no problem, but then he tore right into me and disciplined me verbally for putting my small bag of trash in the kitchen receptacle, which is far larger and supposedly only used for those tenants who use the laundry facility or the kitchen.  I know differently, but I chose to remain silent, but he continued with his comments and said he knew all about me and what happened on my job.  I wanted to tell him I did not get fired, and there were no charges ever filed, but I was only put on Administrative Leave, and eventually retired in good standing and now receive my state pension without any problem. But alas, I kept my peace.

I have been living at this rooming house in the city going on five years now, and the house manager and I have had our isolated moments of disagreement, as well as good moments, whereupon I have been thanked for being a good tenant and a good eye on those whom he could not always watch, where I live on the second floor.   But now, I am afraid, things have taken a different turn, and his words have brought back many wounds and memories I have wanted to forget, and it hurt me deeply to hear him speak the way he did.

I have only been known for my behavior, which most of the time is quiet.  I stay to myself, as most of us do in the house.  Most of us are like two ships in the night passing without much comment, but I know there are various stories of all those who live there.   We all have our baggage, and mine is not very pretty.   Separated from my wife.  Now divorced.  Daughters who choose to remain aloof from me and not want me in their life, and the house manager told me in the beginning that I would never be reunited with my wife, and my marriage was over.  I had different hopes.

So now, with all my prayers for forgiveness now, the past comes back to my mind with all my faults, but I know God is the one who really knows me.  He knows the thoughts and intents of my heart, and all the hurts which I have gone through, and to whom I have hurt as well, and He is a merciful God, forgiving, and compassionate.   The lack of any compassion and grace which I heard from my house manager this morning gives rise for concern on my part.  I am now defined by my behavior of the past, and what he knows….I don’t know what he knows, but it was not criminal.   I retired from state service in good standing and there has not been any issues with the State refusing to pay me a pension for criminal behavior.  The whole issue of five years ago stems from the bad marriage situation and it carried over into the workplace.  So sad, and choices have had unintended consequences, and I never thought my marital woes would have resulted in my losing my job and ending up working the late night shift in grueling manual labor.   

Some things I do know, however.   I know I am not defined by my behavior.   I am a Christian, and Christ has redeemed me.   I read from my holy book that “there is no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus.”  Yeah.  That’s me.  I have faults, made mistakes, spoken out of turn, let my temperment get in the way of logic many times, but I am a Christian, and God loves me.   And God loves my house manager too,  and I pray for him almost daily that he will come to know the love of God in Christ.  God knows him like He knows me.   God knows all about him, and all of his moments of living, unlike the fact that I am only partly known by someone who does not live with me or speak with me or dine with me or even pray with me.  That is my consolation.   And the greater consolation I have is that God loves me irrespective of what others may think or say or do.   

My purpose is to “do good,” and I will abide by the trash commandments which have been spelled out to me, and I hope that will be the end of it.   “Abstain from all appearance of wrongdoing,” it is written, and so I will….and I hope the house manager finds it in his heart to forgive me, and not hold my past against me.  If he does, he will ultimately those who only see my life as one of failure and loss.   

“I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord.  “Plans to help you and not harm you…to give you hope and a future.”   That is my consolation.   I don’t know what the future holds, but God holds the future.   My one and only friend in the world, and the woman I love would staunchly agree….

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Trust…

So the bank manager told me the same thing the previous others had told me.  “Don’t trust anyone.  You cannot trust anybody.  Just look where trust has gotten you.”  Sure.  Great words.  Encouraging?  I doubt it.  I asked her how she trusted her boyfriend or parents or brothers or sisters, and she laughed.  “Gregory,” she said, “you just can’t trust anyone anymore.”  And that was the end of the conversation and she helped me get over the latest hump which restored my bank account.  It did nothing to encourage me that I would spend the rest of my life alone if I did not trust anyone, but that was another conversation we did not have.

Yeah.  Trust.  It is something you earn.  I get that.  But I believe it goes deeper than that.  Trusting someone not to hurt you or lie to you or to treat you with dignity.  Not believing the worst about someone or their motives.  Yeah.  That’s the ticket, it’s been said.  Some think it is the ticket to perdition to trust yourself with another.  But in my case, I believed their intents were virtuous and they cared for my welfare, and I did not believe I would be deceived and plotted against to take my hard-earned money for what essentially became another scam, and another situation where I would lose my bank account.

I had this “relationship” with Maria (a later post I’ll share soon), and it involved an alleged “marriage” between myself and her, and her “lawyer” finally decided he was going to send me the money to get things going, and I pleaded with him not to send me any money.  Sure.  I told Maria I was broke, and I guess she remembered my account numbers and decided to share it with her “lawyer.”   I had forgotten about that.   So I sent a text back to the lawyer and told him I did not want any money and certainly did not want him putting it into my account.  Too late, he said.   The Bank in London has already done it, and so like a good boy scout, I rushed to the bank and asked the bank manager how to stop the deposit, and she asked the million dollar question.  “Did you give him your account numbers or password?”  There was no password given, I told her, but he had the account numbers, just like my employer had my account numbers when I got an automatic deposit for working.  She didn’t buy it, and that is when the negotiations began.

She told me my account would be terminated, and she gave me 30 days to get my depositors notified of a new account.   I agreed and fulfilled the gentlemen’s agreement with her, and  the following day, I returned and told her I had notified a couple of accounts of the news, and then she found out one of her bank tellers “accepted” the deposit from the “bank in London,” which turned out to be a credit union on the West Coast, and was deposited in a woman’s account against her wishes, and to make a long story short, the whole transaction was an effort on the part of the “lawyer” to scam the bank out of hundreds of thousands of dollars.  The lawyer told me I had to send him the money which was deposited, and I told him it was a fake account, and he hemmed and hawed and threatened me, and the bank manager notified the local police and the credit union on the West Coast, and the lawyer silenced his texting.

The bank manager was pleased that I’d kept my word and notified my accounts of the new account number, because I had done it in short order, much quicker than the 30 days.  Then she told me again.  “You can’t trust anyone.”  Ok.   I heard her.   I had heard that before.  Yeah.  I had become victim to numerous financial entrapments.  False wire transfers, bogus checks, even counterfeit postal money orders.  This resulted in at least four or five lost bank accounts within a few years.  And could I then get a credit card or online bank approval?  Not by a long shot.   I trusted too many people who seemed genuine.  Financial trust was vital to me.  And the romance with the various “ladies” in my life took second place.  I could not afford to lose another account.  Too much depended on it.   My employer’s deposits, social security, pension, and other deposits.  Child support, ad nauseum.  I wished I had been wealthy, but even then, I paid my monthly rent check, only to have someone falsify that check and try to steal funds from the bank.  So I pay my rent in cash now.  Pure and simple.

Trust.  Sure.  “Don’t you trust me?” they ask when I refuse to give out my “bank details.”  And I go through the song and dance of my endless struggle for integrity with others and their motives.  “I trust no one,” I say and the faces fall and the conversation ends, and that becomes another nail in the virtual coffin of another possible relationship.  

I still believe the best in people.  And I still have the scars of having lost money to those who I assume are real, but the fakers have been identified finally, and I am not really secure with anyone any longer.  My friend in Colorado tells me to just stay with her.   There is a future with her, she told me.  I want to believe her, and so far it is encouraging.   She has not asked me for my bank details.  The first sign of her asking will be the last conversation.  And the band will play on, and I hope I have the resilience to want a relationship at all.  I can always hope, but hope gets dimmer and dimmer.  Fleeting is a better word.

Why all of these memories….

There are many reasons to recall the instances of my own foolishness when it has come to remembering the names of the women I have once known, if I can even call them “women.”  I would like to think they are women, but there is so much awareness today of what has been called “the scamming of the republic,” but suggesting that there are many men and women who are been deceived by people who work in little rooms with other people in those same rooms, and whose only purpose is to “pretend” they are the people you correspond with on Facebook and Hangout and other social media sites.   The reason, obviously is economics.  They can make a load of cash and become millionaires overnite.

Recent statistics put the “profiles” of those who are online to be about 50%, but  I was told about a year ago by my house manager that 85% of the profiles are bogus.  One of the official websites took me to task recently and corrected me.   And it has been also proven that not only are the people in those little rooms centered in Africa:  Ghana, Nigeria, and others….but the people are of both genders.   And they  pick and choose the pictures which are the most attractive and can bring in the most money.  Can you say “lucrative?”  So for the last few years of my being on social media, following my retirement as a public safety and criminal justice professional, was to experience being scammed on a regular basis by many who stole pictures from models and porn stars and one military individual and took me to the cleaners.  Yeah.  I take ownership for this.   I am a trusting guy (and I will address Trust in a future posting), and I fell for the hard luck stories which were created for others’ benefit.

The names go on and on.   I can remember about every one of them, beginning with the first young lady, Megan.   Then there was an alleged Facebook lottery coordinator, whose name which escapes me for the moment.   But there was Dorris, Pamela, Katie, Mallay, Lisa, Mary (two of them), Trish, Alicia, Jessica, Glenda, Rose, Angie, Amanda, Sussy, Diana, and a host of others with whom I had some kind of contact with, and whose only interest was in money.  Sure, there were suggestions that they would make all my dreams come true, and “age was only a number,” and I can’t remember how many times I was called “Sweetie,” to my utter disbelief.   I was never anyone’s Sweetie, not my sisters, mother, two ex-wives, or any of the other women I once knew.   Of course I was called “Precious” by a secretary in a military base when I finished Basic Training and landed in a duty station in Virginia, but I didn’t care for it, and was dutifully reprimanded for resisting her overtures by a non-commissed officer who had a “thing” for her anyway.  She was a beautiful Southern Belle, and I guess I was not man enough or mature enough to tell her as much back then.

I guess the only thing I could say about many of these women who scammed me was that I was kind to them and treated them with respect and courtesy, and they loved it, or at least said they did, or maybe they saw an Achilles Heel in my personallity and knew I was a sucker to take advantage of.  That’s one theory I have.  And there were even a few Russian women who found my email and wanted to establish a long term relationship with me, but when I refused to pay the hundreds of dollars for their “flight” to the states….ok….that was the end of that.  I never would have seen them at all, I believe, and I was told by a couple of really good friends I had from Africa to never give money to anyone who claims to be from Ghana or Nigeria.   Co-workers who had more sense than I did, and I spent a couple of years working with them, and I am ashamed to say I never followed their advice, so hungry was I for love and affection and the promise of intimacy and romance.   Haven’t had that for over five years now, ever since the separation and divorce.  (Again…subject matter for another future post.)

The “whys” of writing about this are important to me.   To remember, I was told, is to have the memory of never wanting to repeat my actions again, and to keep my money in my bank account or even in my ever empty wallet.   I have a friend in Colorado who insists I should forget about the past and just move on.   Sure.  Great advice, but it is important to remember.  I want to believe my “friend” in Colorado is real also, and she recently told me that our being together is no fallacy.  It is the real thing.  And oh, would I love to be with the real thing.  A real woman, sensitive and gentle, and devoted and loyal and faithful, and not one consumed with lust for money and deception.  

Memories are made of this, or at least that is what the song once said.  And Dean Martin sang it very well.   I would like to think that the song would keep me focused on not wanting to repeat the behavior which landed me in the mess I found myself.   

There is such a thing as “true love” I have been told.  I just haven’t found it yet, and don’t know anyone who has.   I’ll be the first to tell you when I do, however, but in the meantime, the memories keep coming.

I remember her as….

Sussy….

Out of all the women I have known in the last several years, or at least the pictures which have been sent to me which depict “all the women I have known,” the pictures of Sussy stand apart from the rest.   She was cute..pretty…sexy…childlike…adorable…so many words jump to my mind now, even after these couple of years have gone by.   And the memories are still very fresh and I think of her for sentimental reasons.

I think this girl won my heart, and I was a sucker for a hard luck story, and still am, I think.   She reached out to me on Facebook, of all places.  Yeah.   That’s where it all begins, usually.  She said she was in Nigeria.  Abandoned.  Met a Nigerian national and fell in love with him.  Then she fell asleep in his presence, and learned too late that he had drugged her and when she awoke, she discovered she’d been robbed of her valuables, and had no money to take a flight back to the states.   Sounds crazy, but typical, I am sure.   But this had been probably the second time I had heard this particular story, and I fell for it hook, line, and sinker.   I was fired up with the injustice of the whole thing.  She was taken advantage of, and who knows  what this perpetrator did to her while she was drugged.   She was young, beautiful, blonde and blue eyed and I was infatuated with the fact she took a liking to me.

I asked her why me.  I was older than she was.  “Age is just a number,” she replied, and if I could a dollar for every time I heard that reply, I would be a rich man, but nevertheless….I was “in love.”  Or so I thought.  I did everything I could to help her out.  Sent her money for food and other sundry things.  Even sent money to help her get out of the country, but none of it worked, and at the end of it all, I cried tears of regret that such a beautiful young woman would never become my wife.

We had such a wonderful relationship, I thought.   She sent me her pictures.  I loved them, and she loved them, or at least I believed it was “she.”  Her pictures were so cute and she dressed so adorably, but there were other pictures which highlighted her nudity, and she loved to have her picture taken in the nude.  Many poses.  Prvocative. Sexy.  Explicit. All of them designed to hook my passions to her firmly and loyally, and I admit.  I was hooked.

She cried when I told her I did not have any more money, and I suggested she talk to her lawyer in the states, because she claimed to have an inheritance, and he could help her out by sending her the needed funds to leave.  No, she said.  He was a crook, and did not like Africans, and said he’d been scammed before.  I pleaded with her to beg him, and she claimed she did, but all she wanted me to know is that we would be the world’s greatest couple….and we would have the greatest love life on the planet, and the pictures kept coming to keep my appetite strong for her.  And then there was her money.  The “inheritance.”  Yes.  We would live happily ever after and all my debts and bills would be gone.  Free.   We would be free to love and live like royalty.  Dreams.  I loved it.   But I did not have any more funds.   And she cried and cried, or at least that is what she told me.

I blocked her off from me because I could not deal with this apparent reality.  The injustice of again not having the woman I “loved” be abandoned forever in a foreign land because I could not afford to save her and bring her home.   And I had my mind set on our homecoming.  I had the hotel picked out and our activities planned.  I would quit my job and we would go to her home in Louisiana, or one of those states she claims she was from.  Georgia?  Alabama?  It didn’t matter.  She was going to be mine forever.  Or so I thought.

So the memories faded from my mind for awhile.  And the months went by, and I got a message from her about a year later.   She was in Pennsylvania and wanted to come see me.  Could I send her money and she would take a flight to New Hampshire?   Sure, I said, but I did not have any money, and then she began to rail against me for leaving her, and the band played on and I tried again to explain what  happened.   And then she sent the pictures to me again.  Provocative.  Explicit.   Wow.  I loved her, but I was broke.

I had no money, and she broke off the communication this time.  And another year went by and then….would you believe it?  I saw her again.  Of all places, don’t you know, on a website designed to showcase pictures of former models and porn stars who had them stolen from them with the intention of deceiving the unsuspecting.  Yeah…that’s me.   Me again.  But this time I learned that the pictures were not her.   Say it wasn’t so.  That was not Sussy.   That was “Dawson.”   

Dawson was her real name.  And allegedly, she was “retired,” but more importantly, she had been a teenager who loved to do nudes and videos.  Yes indeed.  No surprise.  I checked the website and saw her.   Fully clothed in her cute outfits, and fully unclothed in the explicit state I remember her by.  But with the added attraction of seeing her video and hearing her voice and mannerisms.  We had talked about taking a shower together, but I saw her video of her shower, and my memory jogged into full gear.

Sussy….why?   You deceived me into thinking this had been you, and I spent all that money on a fantasy.  A dream.  A lust-filled hope of extravagant loving and living.  Then I remembered a couple a few months ago, when she sent me an email from North Carolina.  She was with her aunt, she said.  And she wanted to come see me, but she needed money.  Sure.  Wish I had known about “Dawson” back then.   I would have broke the news to her, but I am sure she already knew.  I once asked her who took pictures of her in her Nigerian hotel room, and she said the maid who she trusted, and I warned her against the woman stealing the photos, but it was a lie.  All of it.  There had been a Russian woman who contacted me a couple of years ago with the same pictures.  Sure.   “Dawson” was really popular, and other women were cashing in on her pictures fooling men like me into believing they were real.

What can I say?  Lots, I am sure.  What a fool am I, comes to mind, but at the same time, I remember the tears I shed when I discovered I did not have the funds to bring her home.  But in another spiritual dimension, God had been protecting me.  I now know I never would have brought Sussy back home.  “She” was someone I would never meet.  Pictures were stolen and the scam lives on.   But my memories and the pictures confirm my outrageous foolishness in believing that dreams do come true.   

W.C. Fields would have laughed and uttered with his sarcastic wit….”A sucker is born every minute….”   Suckers are us.   Me, myself, and I.

And her name was….

Dorris…..yes, and in another vignette, I want to share a slice of life which I experienced with one of the first women I met online.

She was actually the second woman I met after Megan, and Megan’s story will be forthcoming soon.   But Dorris….wow….well, it all started harmless enough.  I had just got myself invested in Facebook after a few months of things being quiet, when she sent me a friend request and we began chatting.

In the very beginning, I remember sending out numerous “friend requests” to every lady I saw, and I was hoping to have a global village of friends, and friends only.  No sex, drugs or rock n’ roll for me.   Not back then.  I was not in the best financial shape, but had just retired from the state after many years in a professional capacity, and I still had some retirement savings, and because I had not been divorced yet, there was no actual divorce decree whereupon I had to give so much money each week to my ex-wife.   She essentially just gave me the monthly allowance from my pension check and I had to deal with that, plus the temporary job I had secured helped with the bills.  But this was no surprise for me.  After almost 20 years of marriage, I cannot remember one moment or even one paycheck where I got a dime for an allowance for personal spending, and I usually had to explain every dime I spent, unless it was for the “family.”

Dorris claimed she was abandoned in Nigeria.   That was her original story.  She said she met a Nigerian national when she was in Paris, France, and they were lovers. and had a relationship and he was going to take her to Nigeria to meet his family, but when they arrived in Nigeria, she said he assaulted her, stole all her money and jewelry, and her cellphone with all her pictures on it, including videos she may have made.   Things which would later come back to haunt the both of us.  She said she was dropped of at a Nigerian hotel and was in dire need of someone to help her get out of there.  So guess what…..bingo….I was the man of the hour.

I could have not responded  to her friend request, and I learned too late about how this all worked, because as things went, I got caught up in the drama of the moment, and felt really bad for her.   Being a former criminal justice professional and having dealt with offenders who assaulted women and robbed them…well….I wanted to run interference with this and try to get her out of Nigeria as soon as I could, but I didn’t realize what kind of cost that would involve.  So we began to text on our cellphones, and on Facebook…but much of it was on the phone, and we had text conversations for weeks and months and began to learn so much about each other.  And then things changed when she called me her “true husband,” and I was flattered, but this meant a few other things, like taking on the commitment of paying for her internet bills, feeding costs, and hotel costs each month, and while I didn’t mind it at first, it began to become a real burden.   Then we planned on getting her to come to the states, and I spent hundreds of dollars in this effort.

Like all the ones I knew after Dorris, she said she had an inheritance in Nigeria from her father working the oil fields. He was no longer alive, but the will said that she had to have a husband who was willing to pay for the cost of the government fee in order to claim the inheritance, and this figured in the $500-$600 area, but she had her lawyer try to reduce it for me.   It  never got reduced, and she eventually went through a number of lawyers with each one of them having a different viewpoint about the cost of the government fee.   I used up my moneygram and western union privileges after sending her hundreds if not thousands of dollars over a year’s time.   And there was a few false starts with getting her on the airplane to come home.

I was duly excited to have her be with me a few years ago…..she was the first woman who said she truly loved me, but the first time around, she was at the airport, and then was arrested because there was an African woman who noticed she was trying to leave the country and Dorris owed her money, so she went to jail and I had to bail her out.  Yeah, chock up another $400 for the police report, and then the flight could not be saved, and I got angry with her, and this began a long standing issue with us.   The second time around, the same thing occurred….and then the third time, she was on her way to the airport, and the taxi had an accident, and she ended up in the hospital and wanted me to pay her bills.  Yeah….this was getting crazy, and even crazier when she told me the doctor there wanted to strike a deal with her and forget the money for her treatment if he could only have sex with her.   Yeah….she was a beautiful woman, and the African doctor was a horn dog.  She reported him eventually and he was arrested and she did not have to pay her bills.

Throughout all these ordeals, I became more jaded and sarcastic with her….especially when I had to bail her out of jail twice for stealing, and then she accused me of having other women, and not being faithful to her and being a cheater.   Well….I had met a few other women online, but I was not married to Dorris, and she soaked me out of almost $10,000, for sundry items.  And her hotel manager, Mike…yeah…he was sometbing else…after moneygram and western union said goodbye and good luck to me, I had to do Itunes  to give her money, but sometimes the cards were no good, or at least that is what “Mike” said, but it was a scam.  Always a scam., and I discovered too late that there were numerous women called Dorris online and on Facebook.  She said her ex-boyfriend used her photos from stealing her cellphone to create another persona, and I got sucked into it as well, but never sent the other Dorris any money.

Dorris has periodically sent me texts and accused me of forgetting her.   And I have blocked her and unblocked her on both Facebook and Hangout more times than i can remember, and she even went and pretended to be another woman and claimed to be a relative and asked me all kinds of questions to find out my real intentions, but I knew it was her and blocked the fictitious woman, and even yesterday, there was her picture again with a different name sending me a message with the “Hello handsome” greeting they all use, but I knew it was her and never replied.  I later found out, it was removed.

I expect  to hear from her again soon.   We have fought like cats and dogs and whenever we get back together, it is lovey-dovey time until the accusations start to fly again.   We got too close to each other for comfort….and learned too much about each other and she always said ” I hope we can make this happen,” because she said she always loved and wanted me in her life.   Wow….I heard that from her for so many weeks and months….even spans of months when we didn’t hear from each other.

There is probably so much more I could add, but the truth of the matter is….I believe she scammed me, and my niece once described her as “catfish” to me….you know, baiting me with her looks.  Well….I got hooked, and will never let her hook me again. I would love to get my money back, though.  Shame on me for letting her play on my sympathies.   My other friend, Mallay…well….she had her “uncle” get the FBI to look for her, and it was said she was apprehended and I was going to get my money back.  Sure….another scam….but she was never apprehended and kept on writing to me.   They never go away, do they.

Like a bad penny, Dorris returns every once in awhile, but unlike a bad penny, she is a very beautiful coin…..

 

Memories are made of these…..

It is sometimes interesting to review Facebook profiles.  I have very little contact with my family or former friends or even those I used to attend church with, or should I call them “people of faith?”  I don’t know.  But I think they lost faith in me with everything which occurred in my life over the last several years.  Sure.  I can thank my former pastor for his sudden farewell and showing me the door and his threats to call the cops if I ever set foot in “his” church ever again, and the virtual Scarlet Letter he issued to his congregation to have little or nothing to do with me any longer.   Yeah.  They sure did.  They fell right in line with the directive, and I have not heard or seen from any of them in more than three years now.

So….all things being what they are, I have not been cast away from the profiles which exist on Facebook, and I have viewed many of those former “worshippers” I used to attend church with and many of them…wow….they have grown up and grown old, with some of them not even alive anymore.  And then there is the former church I attended with “Pastor Alex” and his staff.  He was like a second Dad to me, and he died about a month after my earthly father passed into eternity.  Yes.   That is what it is called.   Eternity.  The great unknown, but unless you are without Christ in your life, your unknown will be unknown to you, and you will be without God.  But I digress….and excuse me, but I was commenting on the memories of those I used to be “good friends” with.

No longer children, the ones I used to team teach in Sunday school have all grown up and some have children of their own now.  I really do miss them, and find myself thinking fondly of them when they were not even in grade school yet.  Profiles show their interests and families and I feel like an outcast most of the time when I see their pictures now.  The old adage…”I wonder what became of…” comes home to me, and I see what has become of some of them.  It’s too bad the men I used to be close to have distanced themselves from me.  They were a decent group of men, but the separation and divorce took its toll.  And then there was Steve and Belinda.  A decent couple for sure, but a couple who had tremendous challenges.  Now divorced, I believe, with Steven having his profile indicating he is “..in a relationship,” but not one which I remember.   A terrible motor vehicle accident, alcohol and drug usage and domestic issues were the nails in the proverbial coffin for that relationship and I am saddened.  Not that they ever had anything to do with me after my own marriage failed, but I am still sad to see any marriage dissolve.

In terms of Facebook profiles.  Sure.  My ex-wife has many friends, but I don’t know who they are, because she has hidden herself from me, whether it has been a “deactivation” or just outright quitting the site.  Maybe she is on another, but we don’t really talk much, and I am not inclined to be asking the questions any longer.   The only contact we have is an occasional text on the cellphone, or an email.  The only thing I can remember is something she used to tell me.   Both she and my two girls were praying for me that I would find a decent woman and have a good family eventually.  And by the grace of God, I believe I have found the woman God has given me.  It took a few years and many distractions and nonsense for me to go through before I recognized her, but she is there for me.

Earlier today, I was viewing the former theater “friends” I used to know, with many of them now having grown up or retired and having families of their own.  And I broke down and actually requested two of my sisters to be “friends” on Facebook.   But this Facebook thing really bothers me and I find myself deactivating every once in awhile because I have privacy concerns.  I don’t want to quit it yet, because many of my friends are good Christian people and share their hearts with me, and I do the same with them.  It is also a good way to share the good news of the gospel as well.   So these are some of the memories which make up a room in my mind, and it would be very nice if I could actually see them again, or at least a few of them.  Especially Delos.   He was a very special friend of mine, but he is not to be found on social media.  “Dee” as they called him stayed to himself, and I enjoyed our early morning breakfasts up to a couple of years ago.   

The memories will continue, and I will keep you posted, but until then….be at peace…..

And her name is…..

Roseanne….I don’t know if she spells her name this way, but I guess it doesn’t matter.  She introduced me to herself and I am using my best guess here to give her name the dignity it deserves.

She is a relatively new tenant where my friend Henry lives in the city.  He is an older man, and lives by himself, however, he has made some extra income by renting out his rooms in his house for a few hundred dollars a month, which is a great deal.   I pay about $585 a month for the small room I have in the city, and it is one of the best rooming houses in the city where I live.  I have often thought of asking Henry if I could move in with him, but this would present some challenges.  Changing my address would not be as much of an inconvenience as having to leave the premises in the morning if Henry had a job, and I would certainly have to have a key to get in when I return from working my late night shift.

In any event…..Roseanne has been living at Henry’s location now for a couple of months, and he is a big hearted guy.  By her own admission, she is homeless.  She is about 65 years of age and only gets around $500 a month from Social Security, and has been a transient most of her life, moving from place to place with her late parents.  She claims to have travelled to Ethiopia and parts of Africa with her parents when they were alive, and other parts of the world, and how we actually connected was the fact that Henry is a mutual friend, and we discovered we graduated from the same high school many years earlier.   So tonite I happened to be in the local supermarket where I was having chicken soup, and she was sitting behind me watching the big screen TV which was before us, and we exchanged some niceties and shallow conversation before it became thick and heavy.

I don’t know what got her started, but for some reason, politics entered the conversation, and she lamented the absence of any civility between what she called “the left and the right,” politically speaking, and smirked as she believed the Bush and Clinton families were tightly bound together and were “chosen” by the powers that be, insinuating that the Illuminati and 300 of the most richest families on the globe had appointed them to their positions of influence.   And so it went on and on, and she said she would not be happy until everyone on the planet had a fixed income to live on each year, and it would need to begin in the United States.   Other matters such as taxation to fight climate change were discarded in favor of the political rant she went on, and I sat transfixed by her outburst, and she periodically got out of her seat and walked around the room as if lecturing an audience on her utopian philosophy.

There was much I wanted to share with her, to counter some of her assertions, but thought better of it, as it appeared that she was enjoying speaking her mind, and she admitted that she could not control her emotions about this particular topic, with much of centering on the fact that many of these families had millions and billions of dollars, and she expected that in a perfect world like the one she envisioned, every one of those who were desperate and homeless would share the wealth.   Nice dream, I thought, and she would live the remaining days of her life unhappy if that was what she required to be happy.

Roseanne…..I wonder about the conversations in Henry’s kitchen, with her and his other tenant, Dave.   Could be really interesting, but then again, Dave is also homeless, and I would bet dollars to donuts that they would all agree upon this to ensure peace in the dwelling.   You never know what people are going through or what they face as challenges in their life until you stop and listen to them, and by virtue of kindness and dignified relations, it is sometimes wise to remain silent.  Then they remember you as someone they had a really good conversation with, even if you never uttered a word….