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Monthly Archives: October 2007

A Novel

Far Gresham

A Story Of The American Melting Pot

 by

R.E. Prindle

 

June 1946- June 1948

  1.

     Why David Hirsh put so much energy into this hatred of me could probably be best explained by himself.  Certainly his own affairs needed tending as much as his relations with my mother and me.  For David was also meddling in my mother’s affairs as well as mine.  My father disappeared after the divorce so that I have no knowledge of him.

     David had friends of his insinuate themselves into my mother’s acquaintances.  In the context of girl talk they managed to learn more of her affairs almost than she knew herself.  Hirsh used the information to frustrate my mother’s hopes and plans.  One would have thought that my mother would have known who and who not to trust.  She knew everyone and was known to everyone.  Still she, I won’t say babbled but, c0nfided in people who she ought to have known were not her friends.

page 50

     Thus, when Mrs. Johnson informed her that she no longer wished to keep me, she, as a lady, didn’t express it that way, my mother babbled, I mean, confided to those informants that she would have to move me.  It was in that manner that David Hirsh knew my destination long before I did.  His heart skipped a little beat of joy; I was moving deeper into his power.

     For my part, if I thought I had been unhappy before I would soon look back on what now appeared to be a Golden Age.  I had fortified myself for the eventuality of leaving Mrs. Johnson’s.  I had probably been working, subconsciously, to realize the fear.  At least I knew it was a certainty.  My attitude was shaped by the knowledge  that my future had a defined if indeterminate limit.  The realization  added a certain bleakness to my life.  It was as though living in a train depot waiting for the next train.

     I was not surprised when my mother informed me that I would be moving.  I hoped against hope that she would move me in with herself.  This was not to be so; I had become an intolerable burden to her.  Further, I was a responsibility she could avoid.  Her wish was still to ‘live.’  Although I had never seen her while I was at Mrs. Johnson’s she thought that ‘living’ was incompatible with worrying about me.

     I stood expectantly before her, nervously banging my left leg with my fist, a frown upon my face.  When she knelt down to address me, my blood froze.  An adult only reduces themselves to the the level of a child when they have the direst motives.  I held my breath.  My battered and withered soul fluttered in the breeze when she told me she wanted to put me in the orphanage.  The Children’s Home, or foundling asylum, the Municipal Orphanage.  I stared at her long moments in silence.  I knew she was going to abandon me,  I sensed for the most reprehensible of reasons.

     I was only eight years old, I was defenseless in a hostile world.  I would say that I had hit bottom but in fact I was only at the top step of a long staircase down.  In truth, I do not know how I am here to tell the story.  The spectre of my past haunted me in a way that the Spectre of Communism could never have haunted Europe.  A future lay before as bleak as that of a survivor of the Nazi extermination camps.  What little of me that remained to crumble, crumbled.  I had no tear to cry; I was numb.

     I intuited what lay before me.  In a desperate hope to evade that reality I set two conditions before I would accept…before I would accept…as though I could change my future.  I wouldn’t, I explained, if I was still in the Emerson School District or if they had a fence around the Children’s Home.  She anwered both affirmatively.  What did she care, she would no longer have any responsibility for me.  As it turned out the Orphanage was not in the Emerson District, not that it mattered as it turned out.  My mother delivered me to the front of the Children’s Home.  ‘See.’ She glibly told me.  ‘No fence.’  What did it matter that she lied to me?  She left me in the foyer and walked out of my life.  I was alone.

     How can one explain life?  What is it that can salvage an existence where no life is possible.  Perhaps it’s just that the bars and clefs are always there; each deed or event leaves a note behind.  The inevitable result is a tune which implies that life had been there.  My tune was played in the lower registers; sombre notes from the bass strings of the bass fiddle.  My heart continued beating, my blood continued circulating.

pp. 52-53

2.

     It is difficult to explain the effect of entering the Children’s home on me.  The shifting from my mother and father’s to my grandmother’s, from there to the Smith’s, next the Johnson’s and now into the Children’s Home had destroyed any sense of stability I might have had.  The Hirshes had destroyed my self-respect, which is to say murdered it, on the playground of Emerson.

     Imagine an old electrical transformer by the side of the road.  The wires are already frayed, some lying loose.  Suddenly a tremendous lightening bolt descends from a blue sky and sends millions of volts through the transformer.  The transformer explodes in a ball of fire, blown to smithereens.  That’s approximately how I felt.  Understated, but approximately.

     In an attempt to deal with a reality that was beyond my ability to cope, I guess my old personality assumed an independent life.  I became two.  A real me hovered over and watched the physical me in pity and  commiseration.  Oddly I didn’t go insane or shut out reality, although I had ample reason.  Inexperience had not yet allowed me to distinguish my condition.  I descended a few steps down that long stairwell.  Or perhaps it might be better said that I blasted through the basement and began to arrange my notes on the bars and clefs of a lower octave.  In any case my body remained, stil functioning.  My mind had to make the best of it.  Yet, here I am.

page 54.

     There was another little boy in the office as I waited.  The paperwork had been prepared in advance in my case so that my mother could just drop me off.  The clerk rose from her chair and asked we two children to follow her.  Turning right we walked down a short hall.  I was told to wait while the clerk dropped the little boy off in the infant’s ward.

     Then we continued to my destination.  The building was of a standard institutional design that was used from Massachusetts to Oregon, wherever the Puritans migrated.  It was of a dumbbell design.  A transverse wing sat at each end of a connecting structure.  The right wing had been the office and infant’s ward.  The left wing which we now approached was the dining hall of unpleasant memories.  We turned right.  We stepped down to ground level then mounted a staircase past a half basement and the main floor, past the third floor which was the girl’s dorm, up to the fourth floor which was the boy’s dorm.  This was ‘home.’  The boys dorm stretched from dumbbell to dumbbell in one long hall.  The bunks lay in rows the length of the hall.  In the center of the hall on the left was a cubicle for storage and a retreat for the house mothers.  I was led to this cubicle.

page 55.

     Unknown to me, I was now in David Hirsh’s power.  How delicious to have your enemy at your mercy without their knowing it.  Acting on the information received from my mother’s confidants he had prepared a reception for me.  Through his informers he had made friends with a house mother that he had actually attended school with although they had not known each other.  David was true to Beverly and, even if not, this woman was socially beneath him, but David had favors and benefits that were in his power to bestow.  The woman’s life was enhanced.  It didn’t take much.  The Orphanage was an employer of last resort.  The people who worked there had nowhere else to go.

     Thus for a smile David bent this woman to his wishes.  I was reasonably well dressed when I entered.  Hirsh’s intention was to make me a disreputable clown.  David’s and Michael’s experiences with my parents and me had humiliated them.  Funneled through their minds the experiences came out depicting he and Michael as clowns.  Thus he believed that we had made clowns of he and Michael on purpose.  He felt this and made us responsible.  It was now possible for him to project clownship on me.

     The house mother took my clothes and shoes from me, even my socks.  Standing nude before her I was given a giant pair of socks full of holes.  I was compelled to put these on.  Standing now with only those outlandish socks on me, the house mother, following her instructions pointed at me and burst out into gales of laughter.  She had been instructed to note the scene carefully so that she could report it in detail to David Hirsh.

     I naturally became distressed.  then I was given a pair of undershorts of which the elasticity of the waist band was spent.  They wouldn’t stay up.  When dressed I had to keep reaching in my pants to pull them up.  This quite naturally had a comic effect as did the too large pants I was given to wear along with a ludicrous shirt.  Mystified and angered I reached for my shoes which were kicked from my grasping hands.

    ‘No.  Choose from that pile over there.’  She commanded.

     First hoisting up my underpants and then hoisting up my trousers I stepped over to the pile of shoes.  I examined them for a moment then said:  ‘But these are all too big.’

     ‘Never mind.’  She said with a yawn.  ‘Choose from them.’

     ‘Why can’t I have my own shoes back?’

     ‘They’re not yours anymore.  Choose.’

     All the shoes were far too big.  I finally chose a pair of brown and white wingtips which flapped on my feet.  I flopped around the cubicle a time holding up my pants.  Just a I was about to complain again, she said between sobs of laughter:  ‘That ought to please him.’

     Unaware of who ‘he’ was I thought she was referring to me.  I was not pleased.  I said so and flopped out of the room to further gales of laughter.

page 57.

     In David Hirsh’s mind he had been twice humiliated by my parents and I had twice humiliated Michael Hirsh.  This translated in David Hirsh’s mind that I had made a fool, a clown of Michael.  David shared the feeling for himself.  He now had me in his power to make me look like he and Michael felt.  He would indulge himself to the maximum.

     Alone and abandoned I was truly in the hands of my enemies.  They were enemies that I knew not.  Strange things would happen to me that to my mind, uninformed as to their source, were so incredible as to be unbelievable.  The intent was to defame me to myself, to make me feel unworthy.  Instead by some peculiar reversal I began to think of myself as one of the elect beset by demons that avoided others and for some inexplicable reason settled on me.  The truth would be a long time dawning.

     I arose next morning from the bunk assigned to me.  Boys emerged from beds in a long row on either side of my bed, from a long row above my bed and from a long row beneath my bed.  Privacy was a thing of the past.  There were two toilets for eighty boys.

     I sat on the edge of the bed staring at my brown and white outsized wingtips.  Why did they take away my good shoes?  My new reality began to dawn on me as we filed down into the dining room for breakfast.  What had happened to my world?  We were joined by the approximately eighty girls at the long picnic like tables and benches.  My, I thought, is it going to be like this everyday?  Oh yes it was but even worse.

page 58.

     As a new boy I was scrutinized in the incredible hubbub and noise of one hundred sixty distraught kids abusing each other at the top of their voices.  Food flew everywhere.  Some insane little beasts turned and bopped neighbors over the head with their spoon for no apparent reason.  One boy reached across and pushed his opposites cereal out of his bowl, finding satisfaction in the ensuing fight.  Every day like this?

     After breakfast I was directed into a recreational room on the same ground floor.  It was in the long hall connecting the two dumbbells.  It was a largish room which faced the front yard.  The front yard was nicely landscaped with a driveway that curved up to the front door as though to a fine estate.

     In the rec room I was to become better acquainted with my fellow inmates.  I had no sooner taken a seat on the window bench when a boy, tough looking, ten years old and maybe eleven, he was big, strode up to me.  In the manner of the time he was dressed as a hoodlum.  He must have been an enterprising sort to have obtained those clothes at the Home.  I have no idea where he got them.  He was also the leader of a faction or gang.  He seized the opportunity to test me.

     ‘Hey, you, you’re new here, right?’  He parried.

     ‘So what?’  I replied.

     ‘So what.  Ha. Ha.’ He was pleased at what he considered my arrogant response.  Perhaps it was, I just thought he was stupid to have asked me such an obvious question.  Nevertheless he thought it indicated spunk.

page 59.

     ‘So what.  Ha. Ha.  Well, I’ll tell you so what.  You’ve got to fight my brother Richard here.  You’re both the same size so it’s a fair fight.’

     ‘I don’t want to fight your brother Richard.’  I replied distastefully.

     ‘Don’t matter.  You’ve got to do it.’  He replied in a matter of fact way with no malice.

     He flicked his finger at a boy standing behind him and motioned him forward.

     I realized I’d have to fight this guy.  I hated fighting and If I had to fight I meant to hurt.  I intended to make him sorry he had inconvenienced me.  This was not the usual male style turkey shoot, we were evenly matched.  Unlike most fights I would witness or be involved in this one was fair.

     We fell on each other with energy.  I quickly realized that I had greater energy and fought at top pitch.  We rolled and tumbled.  I finally was getting the upper hand.  Just a I was in a position to pummel Richard, his brother pulled me off saying:  ‘That’s okay you proved you’re alright.  You can join up with us.  I’m William Derringer and this guy who beat you up is my brother Richard.’

     William Derringer had pulled me off Richard just as I was about to conclusively thrash him.  Now I was told by someone I didn’t know who had compelled me to fight that I had been beaten.  I reallized that I would have to put Richard Derringer down constantly which meant perpetual bickering.  I wanted to mind my own business.  I didn’t want to be part of William Derringer’s gang.  Perhaps it would have been easier to be affiliated with a gang.  There was strength in numbers, but conformity to group mores was necessary.  I wasn’t going to conform to anybody.  I opted out.  I told him what he could do with his gang.

Page 60.

     Derringer took it as a show of spirit, dipped his finger at me and said ‘We’ll talk later.’   We never did, but he always considered me one of his gang.

     They were all distraught.  The whole place, inmates, staff and administration had been driven to distraction.  I became distraught.  Distraction became the basis of my personality.  Distraction was the basis of life in the Children’s Home, it was truly the House of the Distraught.  I was the only one with the courage to admit the truth.  It was not that we behaved differently than other people but it was the manner with which we harassed each other.  The Eloy did not do different things than we did; they harassed and worried themselves and others as constantly as we did.  But their homes were refuges where they recruited their strength, regained some measure of sanity.  We had no refuge.  Then too they had group solidarity; they were at the top of the pecking order.  Rather than retaliate against them, subordinate groups turned on lesser groups.  We were the least group at the bottom of the pecking order; we could only turn on each other.  There was no way the inmates could be taught group solidarity and form an army opposed to the other armies.

     The boys savaged each other; the girls did too.  Still the girls being girls wanted to be loved and admired.  Put another way they were capaple of being given affectionate attention, lustful; the boys weren’t.  Indeed the girls would go to extreme, even degrading lengths to get attention.

page 61.

     The girls had a separate bath to which the boys were not admitted although girls were bathed with the boys on the fourth floor.  One poor dear, how I loved them, leaped naked into the window frame on the third floor and shouted to us on the playground:  ‘Hey boys, look at me, I’m naked.’  Indeed she was, but too small a child to be stimulating.

     I once stood and stared up the billowed legs of the shorts of a panty-less girl who sat spread legged playing jacks with her friend.  A girl pointed out to her that I was staring at her.  She said:  ‘I don’t care whether he is staring at me so long as he pays attention to me.’  I didn’t redeem the pledge of my stare; I was too preoccupied with my own problems.

     Thus we all tore at each other.  I could have exerted myself and taken command of the children but I had no desire to devote my existence to their existence.  To command is merely to be a slave of the slaves.  I had no desire for political power.  I desired repose.  The other boys desired neither repose nor political power nor would they let each other alone.  I was being driven mad by the constant bickering  until I found a refuge which none other would enter, neither boy nor girl.  I discovered the place quite by accident.

     We boys were tearing at each other like rats in a cage.  The dilemma was to subordinate them, which I did not want to do, a king of fools is a fool himself, or evade them.  The bickering developed into a chase as I attempted to flee, not so much my tormentors, as the torment.  I raced the length of the hallway on the second floor, throwing out me right arm I seized the corner and whirled around the angle of the walls, taking a few more steps I passed a doorway and threw myself into a couch in the library.

page 62.

     As simple a thing as it may appear, yet I was an instructor to the other boys who had not yet learned to turn a corner sharply by grasping the angle of the wall.  Thus I was seated and wonderingly gazing at the shelves of books before the other boys burst into the sanctum.  Their momentum carried them to the far end of the library.  There, as they realized where they were, a look closely resembling fear played around their eyes.  The primitive nature of man fears books and learning as an alien intrusion.  Their lips silently voiced:  ‘What in the hell is this?’ as the truth dawned on them.  The effort, order and discipline represented by the books repelled them.  Education meant change.  Their mean little souls rebelled against the implied alteration of their natures.

     I watched in amazement.  The books were as garlic to vampires.  The books stood out like so many crosses, forcing those little vampires back into the night.  Turning a look of ineffable disgust on me, their minds subsided into quietude and they filed out of the library leaving me to myself.  Their attitute toward me changed.  I was considered an outsider among the outsiders.  I took up my abode in the library.

     In the years around the turn of the twentieth century the Jews requested and obtained the ambassadorship to Constantinople as their special prerogative from the United States government.  From that location they could keep an eye on their settlements in Zion as well as have a listening post on Russia, Central and Eastern Europe and the Middle East.  As it happened the library functioned in the same way for me in the Orphanage.  It was located across the hall from the offices.  The administrators and staff discussed all problems openly and loudly enough for me to overhear.  They either were unaware that I was there or like all adults figured that I was too young to understand English.  Associated with the inmates, listening in the library I became the most informed and knowledgeable person in the orphanage.

     I was sitting there looking at the pictures in the Oz books,  of which we had a complete set in duplicate, when the old administrator left and the new administrator arrived.  John H. ‘Jack’ Darwen, his wife Angela, and their two sons, Cappy and Skippy.  They arrived about two months after I had and they left four months before I did.  The Old Master Fiddler had arrived.

     Jack and Angela Darwen were both about thirty-six.  Jack Darwen was a stocky five foot nine.  He had developed an air of competence belied by the facts.  Most people accepted him at face value as a competent man of authority.  Even at the Children’s Home Darwen had a position of importance to a certain class of people.  I say even at the Children’s Home because the Home was at the bottom of the ladder; not on an ascending but a descending scale.  The place was not the first stop on the ladder up but the last stop on the ladder down.  The Darwens were definitely declasse.  I marveled that they did not seem to realize it.

     They were the sons of English immigrants.  Their main claim to fame was that their parents had arrived as small children in 1879 on the Broomielaw with Robert Louis Stevenson.  Darwen’s grandparents and parents before him had been petty thieves, cheats and embezzlers.  They operated on the fringe of the law, transgressing it, but always in the way a to avoid its punishment.  In the English sense of the word they were fiddlers.  They fiddled around the law but avoided overt criminal acts.  His grandparents and parents before him had had overweening pride in their cleverness.  Like carnival people they considered themselves wise and the rest of mankind stupid.  Although the family had barely subsisted the reality of their situation in no way impinged upon their notion of themselves.  To their minds it was all luck.  The only difference between themselves and John D. Rockefeller, Henry Ford or Thomas Edison was luck.  Those fellows just kind of fell into it while the Darwens fell out of it.

     Jack Darwen had a stroke of luck when he married his wife, Angela.  She had been a couple social steps above him.  Because of her he had been given a couple of chances he wouldn’t have gotten.  He abused both those chances.  His pilfering and manipulations of opportunities to his advantage and against the advantage of his employers had caught up with him.  It took longer on his first opportunity, shorter on his second.  His third opportunity, if such a job as administrator of the Children’s Home can be so described, at the Orphanage was to be the shortest.

page 65.

     As disreputable as Jack was Angela overcame his shortcomings with her demeanor.  She was a model of the proper Englishwoman.  At five nine she was as tall as her husband.  At one hundred thirty pounds she was considerably more slender.  Child bearing had not ruined the countour of stomach, she was still flat.  She wore print dresses with fitted bodices, belted, with a straight skirt, high heels and nylons always.  She was a woman who took pride in being a woman.

     Her official stance was straight back, heels together, with her hands held before her hips, thumbs and forefingers together.  It had the effect of forming a double delta; sort of a portal before the entry.  I have always wondered what repressed sexuality it signified, or perhaps, it wasn’t repressed at all.

     It was love at first sight for me.  She was a marvelous woman.  My ideal of womanhood is based on her.  Yet, while I can understand that a whim of fate put her within the clutches of Jack Darwen, I cannot understand what fault of character kept her there.

     The two sons, Cappy, four years older than I and Skippy, two years older were smaller exact images of their father; not only in appearance but walk, posture and talk.  They emulated their father and he basked in their emulation.  Like the Old Master Fiddler, they were incipient fiddlers.  Their destiny was written on his brow.

pp. 66 and 67.

3.

      Under the control of Jack Darwen were the staff house mothers.  These women were an interesting lot.  The work at the Orphanage was so undesirable that in many cases the authorities had to go begging.  The inmates were a tough lot of little kids.  As much as we tormented each other it may be guessed how we treated the staff.  There was actually a tacit agreement not to go to far for fear that the women to take care of us couldn’t be found.  It is impossible for me to guess how wild and undisciplined we may have been compared to parented kids.  If the turnover in house mothers was any indication we must have been terrors.  They didn’t stay.

     Most stayed for a bit and were never seen again; some came and went several times.  Generally speaking these women were as emotionally disturbed as we were, but then I have already dubbed the Home, The House Of The Distraught.

page 68.

     Almost every Monday the question was would we have a new house mother or would the old ones last another week?  There were two who did the longest stretches and returned several times.  They were both remarkable women.  Mrs. Stout was much beloved.  She, as her name implied, was a large corpulent merry woman.  She was always sympathetic.  Being a large hearted woman her heart could only stand so much of our misery before she was overwhelmed and left again.  The Orphanage was always a happier and brighter place when she was there.  She was the mother of two boys of her own.  Her husband was a mean hateful person who objected to her working with us pariahs although he had enough benefits from her employment.

     The other woman, Mrs. Miller, was a constant source of amusement.  She had bright red hair, undoubtedly dyed.  She used the Home as a retreat within which she recuperated from her adventures on the outside.  Properly rested and recruited, she received wages, room and board, she made another sortie out into the world.

     Underneath a hardbitten exterior she had, or I thought she had, or she wanted to have but couldn’t find, a loving heart.

     Her problem was men.  She didn’t have any understanding of we little boys and I’m sure she had no understanding of men.  I’m only guessing but I imagine that she offered her heart upon a platter, her body upon the bed (in any position), and her money in her hand.  These gifts were promptly devoured and the remains discarded.  She then returned to we little men of the Children’s Home.

page 69.

     We received the effects of her frustrations, but in such a covertly loving way that if not actually enjoyable were forgivable.  Mrs. Miller left her indelible impression on me.  I became constipated as a psycho-somatic reaction to my traumas.  Even at that age experience had taught me to keep things to myself.  Still, I complained to Mrs. Miller that I was constipated.

     Now Mrs. Miller didn’t exactly keep a tight rein on her emotions.  She gave free vent to her attitudes.  I knew the pain of Mrs. Miller more than other people; it was writ large on her face.  She now bellowed with what seemed like delight:  ‘Ohh, you’re constipated are you?’  She screamed out with undisguised glee.  ‘Well, I know what to do about that.’

     There was something in the way she said it that made my brow furrow and made me want to retract my words; but those arrows once shot fall to earth where they may.

     She actually grabbed me by the collar.  Half dragged and half running I was staggered up to the dispensary on the third floor adjacent to the girl’s dorm.  My squeamishness had now turned to wide open apprehension.  I was half ordered to climb on the gurney and half thrown on it.

    She called in three girls who she seated against the wall.  I demanded that they leave but Mrs. Miller thought it better that they observe.

     ‘All right, girls.’  Mrs. Miller announced in stentorian tones,  ‘Im going to teach you how men are going to treat you.’

page 70.

     There was something in her voice that made my constipation cease to bother me at that time.  I rolled over to drop off the gurney.  Mrs. Miller with the speed of a demon in possession grabbed me and slammed me back down on the gurney.

     ‘I’m going to cure you of your constipation.’  She shouted at the back of my head in frenzied tones.  Before I knew it my pants were around me knees.  She was waving the enema wand in crazy circles above her head.

     ‘All right girls, this is what men are going to do to you, so give it to them whenever you get the chance.’

     I didn’t know exactly what men did to women or what bizarre sexual practices Mrs. Miller could be talked into but, boy, I didn’t want to find out either.  I started yelling and I squirming but Mrs. Miller had her left hand in the small of my back leaning on me with all the strength of her frenzy.  The three girls sat against the wall mouths agape, trembling at the terror of the unknown.

     Mrs. Miller rearing over me like some deranged Valkyrie swooped the phallus down into my rectum emitting a blood curdling cackling laugh, screaming at the girls in pleasured tones of ecstatic vengeance:  ‘That’s all that men are girls.’  The she plunged the enema wand in and out of my rectum to emphasize each word:  ‘Liars (plunge), sneaks (plunge), cheats (plunge) and thieves (plunge.’  I don’t know whether those girls got the message but I sure as hell did.  I’ve found that her evaluation of men (and mankind, I might add) is pretty much true too.  It’s too bad Mrs. Miller couldn’t have found some other way to instill her hard won knowledge.

page 71.

     Having filled me with water, she told me to get on the toilet.  I protested that I didn’t want to do that in front of the girls.

     ‘Well, then make a fool of yourself on the gurney.  Stand back, girls, when he lets go it’ll be bigger than Spindletop.’  She bellowed in a most unladylike way, laughing uproariously, even demonically.

     Now I was really angry but truly in a powerless postion.

     ‘Well, are we still constipated? Do we want more of the same?  Did we like it?’  She shouted out, laughing that hoarse screaming demonic laugh.

     I knew who she was and I let her know.  ‘No.  I don’t want you either.’  I spat out pulling up my pants and running for the door.  I wonder how many times Mrs. Miller experienced the exact rejection.

     The three girls sat there in a stunned silence as I whizzed past.  I could hear Mrs. Miller still laughing demonically as I ran down the hall zipping up my fly.  How many times had she seen men do that before.

     In that brief encounter Mrs. Miller acted out her whole life history.  Incapable of dealing with men she let them abuse her sensibilities.  After that I felt a deep sympathy for Mrs. Miller.  I didn’t like her any better but I could feel her pain.  I respected her for all that.  I didn’t go to her with another complaint however.

page 72.

     You may say:  ‘How horrible.  It must have had a terrible effect on you.’

     It was unpleasant.  I wouldn’t have volunteered but she was a woman for all that.  I didn’t hate her.  I didn’t feel humiliated.  In its perverse way it was sex between a man and a woman.  Women don’t make men homosexuals, men do.

     Still, Mrs. Miller contributed to my mental turmoil.  Her message that men were liars, sneaks, cheats  and thieves was graven on a cliff face in my soul.  Shall we say, it was a lesson.  Life was full of little lessons in those days.  I didn’t always learn what I was intended to but I saw and interpreted with my own unguided intelligence.  In a way I was a free man.

     I am sure that I had more than one bath in the two years I was incarcerated.  I can only remember one.  Perhaps they have all combined into one.  Perhaps also I avoided them whenever I could and took sponge baths from the sink.  I don’t know.  I only know the one I remember was a horrible experience.  It wasn’t that the house mothers didn’t try.  But imagine eighty boys and from six to ten years old plus a couple dozen girls in a Saturday night bath.  There were only three tubs.  One stood on stilts so the small children could be washed by the house mothers without bending over.  The other two were on the floor.  The water was changed infrequently if at all.  Boy, did I hang back, did I do my best to avoid that slippery, messy, dirty, dangerous pandemonium.  What insanity!  I would not stand for it.

     The house mothers had to lift the smaller children above their heads to get them into the high  tub; the same to get them out.  Dry bodies going in; wet soapy bodies coming out.  As I stood by the door watching this bedlam, a house mother hoisted a child out of the tub, lost her grip and sent him crashing to the floor on his head with a sickening thud.  They dried him off and sent him on his way.  Two women, eighty or more kids, how could they be held responsible?

page 73.

     I must have sponge bathed.

     There was remarkably little or no actual brutality committed against us; at least none that I witnessed or that reached my ears.  I was also outside the mainstream.  Mr. Darwen did have a sadistic streak which he may have indulged without my knowledge.

     I don’t know what we had done, perhaps made too much noise after lights out.  Mr. Darwen decided we needed punishing.  There were about twenty five of us involved.  We were compelled to line up in Jack Darwen’s bedroom while he stood at the door leading into the boy’s dorm.  Angela Darwen stood beside him double delta fashion.  Cappy and Skippy stood opposite their father laughing and applauding at a good hit and fall.  I always knew enough not to be the first in line.

     What Darwen did was totally unnecessary.  Jack Darwen was a fairly big man.  Swinging with all his might with his open hand he hit the first boy in the back of the head.  The force was great enough to lift the boy off his feet and literally knock him on his face.  The next boy stepped up and was dealt with in the same way.  I had been in the middle of the line but I now began edging toward the end.  I thought it better to let him wear down before I stepped up.

     The sound of the smack was terrifying.  Oddly enough as I pushed back the other boys crowded up.

page 74.

     The sound of four or five howling boys was more disconcerting still.  From the back of the line I could see that Darwen wasn’t going to last.  I was also determined that he should stop hitting the boys in the head.  I directed my efforts at Angela Darwen yelling out:  ‘Not on the head, Mrs. Darwen,  not on the head.  Hit us on the behind.’  Jack Darwen had used up about twelve boys and was beginning to breath heavily from the exertion and excitement.  It was possible that someone could get hurt.

     I redoubled my efforts to persuade Mrs. Darwen.  Some of the remaining boys finally caught on  and started the same chant.  I don’t really know whether Angela Darwen had a soft spot in her heart for me or not but it seemed like she was eyeing me while she placed her hand on Jack Darwen’s considerable bicep and urged him to not hit on the head but on the fanny.

     About five or six boys before me he switched.  I had solved one problem but another remained.  On the other side of Jack Darwen’s bedroom door were a bunch of guys who had taken a much harder blow that I was going to take.  I won’t say I was smiling inwardly.  How stupid do you have to be to line up first for punishment.  They deserved to be hit for stupidity alone.  I didn’t like them anyway.

     By comparison I knew I wasn’t going to be hurt.  Besides Darwen had to bend down to hit you on the fanny.  I was twenty-fifth; the guy was exhausted.  First in line for punishment!  I was actually laughing inside.  Nevertheless I was now facing a hostile crowd who had taken a harder hit than me.  I prepared a shout of pain and threw myself down in a prat fall.  I don’t know why I tried to gratify those guys by complaining about how much it hurt.  They quite correctly didn’t believe me.  Darwen shut the door into this bedroom.  A bunch of the inmates gathered around me.  I didn’t see who hit me but I took a punch in the solar plexus that knocked the wind out of me.  I lay gasping on the floor which satisified them.  Stupid boys.  A new round of torment began.  I got them back too.   When will they ever learn.

page 75.

     That was the first indication I had of Jack Warden’s perfidy.  I would next witness his petty criminal mind in the library.  I sat in the library nearly every day.  The books all came from donations.  Members of the community were fairly generous to the Orphanage.  The library was fairly large, I would guess fifteen by thirty feet.  Except for the window in the front wall facing the street the walls were lined with shelves from floor to ceiling.  Thus several thousand volumes were all children’s and juvenile books.  Quite a substantial library of its kind.  Thus as an orphan I, as it were, owned the most extensive collection of children’s literature in the city, perhaps the State.  I doubt that even the public library had as extensive a collection.  these books were all literary, no picture books.

     Everything of importance was there, much of it in first editions.  As I mentioned two complete Oz collections, Dr. Dolittle, Raggedy And and Andy, the complete Hardy Boys, Robert Stevenson.  And I was the only one who read any of it, ever.  I spend hours reading spines, memorizing titles and authors.  In an odd perversion of reality I had greater opportunity for and acquired a greater knowledge than the parented kids.  They, in their turn, with all their advantages never realized that I had advantages so far beyond their resources as to reverse roles and leave them the impoverished ones.  Likewise we at the Home were treated to more entertainment from circuses to ballets than even the richest kids saw.  Strange but true.  Life is full of paradoxes.

page 76.

     It was thus I acquired an extensive knowledge of literature.  I spent several weeks doing nothing but examining the spines of the volumes.  Quite naturally I was, I won’t say spied on, but observed by Darwen and the office staff.  My presence in the library was so singular that it aroused their curiosity.  They, wisely I think, declined to discuss it with me.  They of course speculated on what I was doing as they never saw me reading the books.  They did voice their speculations loudly enough for me to overhear and resent them.  I didn’t have to do things as they would have.

     Having created a house of mystery in my mind, I began to examine the volumes individually; that is, I found books with illustrations and looked at the pictures and turned the pages.  In ths manner I found the virtues of the Oz series.  I was specially entranced by the Flying Horse of Oz.

     I was in the process of actually reading this volume, with especial and lingering interest devoted to the pictures, when Jack Darwen and a strange fellow burst into my sanctuary.  Jack Darwen had a particularly vulgar persona that clashed with my library.  The Home had received several large accessions of books in the previous weeks that left the library bulging; in fact, the books were still in boxes on the floor.  This fact probably gave the old Master Fiddler the idea that there was ‘gold’ in that thar library.

page 77.

     He had already developed into an old clothes dealer.  Clothing was donated to the Home in a steadier stream than books.  Now this clothing was not necessarity cheap clothing.  The lesser affluent do not give away clothing.  They wear it out.  Mostly the affluent donate clothing.  They often times spend a great deal on their offspring.  Thus the cream of the good quality clothing was skimmed off by the Old Master Fiddler to augment his meager, though still undeserved, income.  Mrs. Stout and the other house mothers skimmed the next best.  We inmates were left with the skimmed milk, all the cream was gone.

     The Old Master Fiddler, seeing the boxes of books sitting on the floor, suddenly realized that they were a potential source of profit.  The gentleman with him was a used book dealer who had found the mother lode.  Used book dealers only want the cream.  By some mysterious process not connected with knowledge I had alread divined the best books.  The book dealer had discovered that the same books were desirable from his catalogues.  These were my books; I didn’t mind when the first batch left including one of the sets of the Oz books, there were still plenty left.

page 78.

     For the first two or three raids the book dealer was cautious, not completely trusting the Old Master Fiddler.  Then he became bold.  I noticed with alarm that some of the best books, ones that I intended to read, began to disappear.  I remonstrated with The Fiddler, thinking perhaps, knowing that in his mind he didn’t think I knew which were the good books, not to take them.  He looked at me incredulously, fearing possible retribution if I should somehow tell; he slacked off for a little.

     Then, what to my wondering eyes should happen but these two scurvy fellows, Darwen and the book dealer, snatched up the remaining set of Oz books.  I protested.  They persisted.  I requested that at least they leave the Flying Horse Of oz.  the Fiddler made some uncomplimentary remarks and snatched the Flying Horse out of my hands thrusting it into the box.  He shouldn’t have done that.  He gave me another incredulous look, muttered something I didn’t quite catch and continued in his robbery of my books.  He shouldn’t have done that.  He may have thought I was harmless and inconsequential but if he had been attentive while attending church he would have known that God performs his acts in mysterious ways and chooses vessels in a strange manner.

     The library was a desert with the good books gone.

page 79.

4.

      The Children’s Home was not a pleasant place, still, whoever worried about us continually sought ways and means to entertain us.  We had magic shows; a child prodigy of the boogie woogie piano, Sugar Chile Robinson, gave us a command performance.  God only knows what training they gave him to keep him smiling like that.  I did notice however that his vision didn’t get any further than the end of his nose.

     There was a Catholic orphanage a few blocks down Nelson St.  The Catholics also sought diversion for their inmates.  One Saturday we were taken down there to see some wonder horse who had performed miracles in the Pacific War in Borneo or some such jungle location.  I never understood what this horse was doing in the Pacific or why.  A technicolor movie was made about the horse’s exploits which I saw but I still didn’t understand.

page 80.

     The horse was brought to the Catholic Orphanage and performed his stunts in their playground.  I cared little about the stupid horse, but I was interested in the contrast between the Municipal Orphanage and the Catholic Home.  Ours was a much freer existence.  We went to the public school and had only a chain link fence around the playgrund.  We were also free to come and go more or less as we pleased.

     The Catholic orphans in contrast were virtual prisoners.  They were never allowed outside the walls.  They received their school intstruction from Nuns.  Rather than a chain link frence, a high, perhaps ten foot brick wall, surmounted by broken glass, surrounded their playground.  The playground itself was concrete with a big steel grate for a drain in the middle.  The Nuns and Priests stood along the walls with admonitory expressions; just like it was possible to do something.

     We were wild and free looking while the Catholic inmates were forlorn and oppressed looking.  My own mental distress, which I took seriously, appeared magnified in the faces of the Catholics.

     I filed out thoughtfully after the wonder horse had clopped out his age with his hoof for the last time.  The wonder horse began our relationship with the Catholic orphanage.  The Catholics rented ‘wholesome’ movies, an oxymoron if their ever was one, to show the inmates.  We would come back at their invitation to sit through them.

     Among us was a boy called Bertie Hambaugh.  Oddly enough there were few of us who were genuine orphans.  A great many had one parent and many had two parents.  Bertie had both.  They apparently were not of this world.  Bertie was a reprehensible person.  Even at that age I  knew he was not of a sound mind.  I have called the Children’s Home the House Of The Distraught, Bertie was crazy.  He was dishonest, a liar, a cheat, a thief.  He played with matches.  None of that made him a bad guy.  He had every reason to turn sour.

     However his parents may have justified themselves they placed him first in the Catholic home with its intramural schooling, then in the Municipal Orphanage with its public schooling, bact to the Catholic home and then back to us, then his parents took him to their house and another school.  All this movement was done in one year.  Horror comes in many forms; children cannot survive such treatment.

     Bertie had a special horror of the Catholic home.  The place was a real concentration camp.  The only difference between it and Dachau was that the inmates weren’t gassed.  Bertie had every reason to loath it.  Nevertheless circumstances beyond his control had turned Bertie Hambaugh into a loathsome person.  I was glad to see him go the last time and I hoped he would not come back.

     A few years later after I had been farmed out to the Wardens I read in the paper of a terrible fire.  A boy had locked all the doors, murdered his parents and set fire to the house with he and his two siblings in it.  That boy was Bertie Hambaugh.  Too bad he had to kill himself.  When I pointed out the story to the Wardens they gave me a long lingering look that I couldn’t understand.

page 82

     Bertie was with the Catholics when we were gathered up, marched out to Nelson St. and began the trek to the Catholic home to see ‘Miracle On Forty-Second Street’, a terrifically ‘uplifting’ if stupid movie.  The Catholic kids were subjected to such ‘entertainment’ remorselessly.

     We marched along, in good order actually strung out for a block and a half.  I naturally brought up the rear roaming up and down the flanks.  We filed into the tomb.  The Catholics apparently tried to save money on electricity for the place was ill lighted.  We strung out up to the third floor where the room they used as a theatre was.  We sat under the stern and watchful eyes of the Priest and Nuns  who took their place along the walls.

     Bertie latched onto me and started excitedly explaining how things were done there.  He was under the jurisdiction of the Nuns, so they sat him down somewhere else in the room to silence him.  He was in high excitement and kept bobbing up and down trying to get some message to me.  He was finally removed.

     I was standing and pacing the back of the room disgusted with the movie.  A Priest tapped me hard on the shoulder blade.  It hurt, I turned in anger.  With a stolid face he disdainfully flicked a finger at me indicating I should sit down.  I didn’t like his style and was about to tell him so when one of the house mothers stepped over and explained as politely as she could.  I sat down.

page 83.

     The ordeal of the movie was over.  I hung back and tried to blend into the woodwork.  I was successful.  Everyone was gone.  I roamed the halls alone.  Unlike our place that was fairly open, this place was a succession of high and closed doors.  Our place was dismal, this place was grim.

     One of the doors opened to reveal a bunch of kids standing in it.  They frantically waved me over.  I stepped over.

     ‘Hey, come in here with us.  We’re doing it.’  They meant having sex.

     ‘They torment us but we get back at them by doing it.’

     Unable to retaliate they sought vengeance by hurting themselves, something like the boy who goes to prison to teach everyone a lesson.  I felt commiseration for them.  I might have joined them but I feared I might not be able to get out again.  Also a Nun spotted me and descended on me like the woman with a stick in her hand on the label of Old Dutch Cleanser.

     I could stand up to her and I did.  I’m sure it was her intent to thrash me.

     ‘What are doing out of your room, you little demon.’

     I was surprised she didn’t recognize me as not being one of her charges.

     ‘You can’t touch me!’  I bellowed, hoping to avenge the inmates in some little way.  ‘I don’t live here, I live at the Municipal Orphanage.’

     ‘Well then you get out of here right now or I’ll thrash you anyway.  You children there, get back in your room and close that door.’

page 84.

     I raced down the stairs and out into the dark street.  I had been given food for thought as I walked up Nelson to the Home.  I appreciated the freedom to be by myself on my own.

page 85.

     5.

 

     I was also given food for thought one day when a couple who wished to adopt a child came to examine the candidates.  It was the custom to send the prospective adoptees into the playground where as they milled around the adopters could examine them.  Certainly from the adopters point of view the precedure had relevance.  The adopter could observe the children’s form and motion, posture and demeanor, which believe me are important indicators of the child’s state of mind.

     The administrators sent we orphans out into the yard.  Then the house mother told me to go out and join them.  I looked at her blankly.  I hadn’t seen my mother since my admission but then I had never seen her at the Johnson’s, and not more than once or twice at the Smith’s.  I feared that she had abandoned me but it wasn’t clear to me that she had.  I protested that I wasn’t an orphan, that I had a mother.  The house mother gently insisted, pushed me out the door.

page 86.

     Once outside I intruded into the formation of orphans waiting with countenances reflecting hope and terror.  There were about thirty of us out there.  As I walked into their midst the amorphous mass began some mysterious process of shifting and slid about to assume a new order which allowed for me.  I didn’t know why I was there so I stood bold and fearless.  The others milled and wheeled nervously.

     I had been out there some few minutes, the others longer, when the adopting couple arrived.  The woman was quite clearly frantic to have a child.  The man clearly showed his distaste and contempt for us.  It was quite obvious that the woman had begged and pleaded with him to allow her to adopt.  His arrogant attitude clearly showed his intention to obstruct her efforts.  I hated him instantly and with good reason.

     I was at that time a platinum blond.  I was however only several months from a very rapid change to brown.  The woman too was blond.  She was a nice looking woman, well dressed in a conservative way.  Her husband wore a grey plaid suit, he was carrying  the jacket.  They were obviously affluent and on the way up.  Still the woman’s husband had an arrogant unintellectual look.  Something told me I had a better library in my head than they had in their house.

     In order for them to have made an intelligent decision they would have had to have mixed with us for hours and interviewed their choices extensively.  They, or rather, she expected to walk into the yard and lead a child out like a puppy.

page 87.

     In her nervous excitement she rushed out into our midst.  I don’t know whether it was prearranged or whether she was merely attracted to the color of my hair and my bold, relaxed stance.  She would have taken me on the spot.  I might have gone with her.  As she bent down to talk to me I spied the house mothers watching expectantly from the doors and windows.  Over her shoulder I spied her husband who came up a few paces behind her.  His revulsion at the prospect of introducing me, or rather, any of us, into his household molded his features and was reflected in his apprehensive stance.  I might enter his household but it was clear that the man would torment me to death.  There was an unwarranted air of superiority about the man that revolted me.  One could see that he didn’t have anything going for him but his clothes.  I had already made my decision about him.

     His wife was kneeling before me and saying:  ‘Would you like to go home with me and be my little boy?’  My eye was fixed on her husband.  She looked over her shoulder at him then turned back to me.  ‘Hmm.  Would you like to be my little boy?’

     It was apparent to me then, if not transparently clear, that I had been irrevocably abandoned.  I had a choice to go with this woman and take a chance on her husband and probably have a comfortable childhood, or tolerate my current wretched existence.  I shot another penetrating glance at him and saw reluctance if not rejection in his eyes.  There was no room in his life for another man’s child.

page 88.

     I looked at her and said coldly:  ‘I can’t.  I already have a mother.’  The woman burst into tears and rushed from the yard followed by her husband who cast what I can only describe as a grateful look over his shoulder at me.  I returned his clance with a contemptuous hateful glare.  I knew I was a better man than he.  My experience had placed me years beyond him in perceptive abilities.  He wouldn’t have been able to keep up with me.

     The others stared in disbelief.  I had rejected their dream, their fantasy.  Their crushed hopes turned into a lingering resentment against me.  Still, I had rather be crushed, abandoned and forgotten than submit to that man’s cold tolerance.  Orphans have their own gods.

     As gods go, the repirth of the Savior gave the Old Master Fiddler an opportunity to demonstrate his skill.  I was sitting in my library as Easter was coming around looking at the spot where the Flying Horse of Oz had been, when I overheard a conversation between Jack Darwen and his two apprentice fiddlers, Cappy and Skippy.  Cappy and Skippy- here was an incompetent, inept man in his last job before falling out of society into a quasi-criminal existence and he calls his kids Captain and Skipper.  What fantasy, what delusion.  He had nothing to teach them that would make them leaders.  He had no example to set them that would put them on the path to success.  As I listened he was telling them how to take advantage of the unfortunate wretched inmates of the Orphanage.  Play a refrain of that lugubrious ‘Fanfare For The Common Man’ for him.

page 89.

     A gala Easter egg hunt and festive Easter dinner had been planned for us.  The Easter egg hunt was to be held in the front yard of the Home which was capacious and nicely landscaped.  Cappy and Skippy should not even have been allowed to participate.  They weren’t even inmates and besides Cappy was thirteen and Skippy eleven.  Inmates were farmed out to foster homes at ten.  The reason was that the fear of boys at puberty or near puberty mixing with six, seven and eight year olds would lead to fagging and homosexuality.  In those day homosexuality was not attributed to chemical changes in the brain or genetics but to the sex drive.  Of course puberty might be accompanied with chemical changes in the brain  but homosexuality is probably more directly related to sex drive coupled with opportunity.

     But Cappy and Skippy were older than any of us.  Guys like Jack Darwen believe that they are smarter and more clever than anyone else in the world.  Their arrogance is matched only by their contempt for their fellows.  The Old Master Fiddler had been twice fired for dishonesty.  I would get him again soon.  But his protective denial refused to let him see that he had failed precisely because his lack of cleverness had been so obvious.  The world was smarter than he.  Still he could point to the books and clothing he was pilfering and nobody knew.  No one but the whole children’s home.  Now he was instructing his boys how to fiddle us orphans.

     He was explaining to them very carefully where the eggs were to be placed.  I listened attentively.  He also explained to them how many eggs he believed that would be necessary for them to take first and second place.  There were to be three prize Easter baskets for the top three finishers.  Those baskets turned out to be mighty fine prizes by our, or any other, standard.  When they had the requisite number of eggs they were to stop.  Just as this hunt was rigged so are all hunts, drawings and lotteries.  The winners are already determined.  I never willingly participated in such games gain.

Page 90.

     I had, as Bessie Smith said, my own.  None of the others at the Home did.  They needed things like the Easter egg hunt.  Unfortunately, Jack Darwen had an element of truth in his uncharitable assessment of mankind, these kids were sheep waiting to be fleeced.  A wise shepherd cares for his flock; the Old Master Fiddler was not a wise shepherd and that is why he was always caught with the fleece in his hand.

     Easter morning broke wet and cloudy.  This did not dampen the ardor of the inmates.  They were eager and ready.  I had the egg locations memorized too and I was prepared to beat out Cappy and Skippy when what do you suppose the Old Master Fiddler did?  He gave Cappy and Skippy a head start.  I gritted my teeth.  Cappy and Skippy walked up to where the two largest caches were placed with an air of self-assurance that betrayed their game.  Cappy was much bigger than the rest of us; for our purposes he was almost an adult.  He strolled over reached down looking back at his father who snorted with pleasure, gave him a wink and said:  ‘Well, look what I found.’  He was just one lucky guy.

page 91.

     It was only then that we inmates were released.  I ran to two of the other locations Darwen had named and retrieved nine eggs.  I found four more.  I knew that I was probably therefore in third place.  I slowed my search and looked over at the Darwens.  They were looking on with vast amusement.  Their expression said:  ‘Look at the little fools scramble and we’ve already won.’

     Disgust welled up in me.  I too knew contempt.  I walked up to Cappy and offered him an egg.  ‘Here Cappy, do you need another egg?’  I said as sarcastically as possible.  Secure in his self-conceit Cappy failed to note the sarcasm.  ‘Sure, Gresham, thanks.’  He actually took it.  As he cracked it to eat he pursed his lips and gave a quizzical look at this father as if to say:  ‘We’re so smart and they’re so simple.  They deserve to be cheated, don’t you think?  Ha. Ha.’

     His father gave him a wrinkled smile, shrugged and said softly:  ‘Cattle fit only to be led to the slaughter.’

     With my egg Cappy still finished first and without it I still finished third.  But, I said to myself, I still should have finished first.

     The Easter baskets for first and second places were really magnificent.  I couldn’t reconcile myself to seeing both of them going into the Darwen’s quarters.  Angry as I had ever been I began to agitate among the inmates.  I wanted to make some kind of protest.  But they were only sheep waiting to be sheared, cattle fit only to be led to the slaughter.  I had set myself an impossible task, they acquiesced in the their fate.  Well they knew who they were, not only at the Orphanage but at Longfellow School.

pp. 92-93.

     I had two lives as did all we inmates.  We had our little micro society of the Children’s Home and we mingled with the outside world, the world of the parented children at Longfellow, for the Home was in the Longfellow district.  Longfellow district was adjacent to the Emerson District.  Longfellow was next on the South, thus the families of the Hirshes and Websters with their allies straddled the lines of the two districts.  I was vulnerable to David Hirsh both at the Home and Longfellow although Hirsh’s action must necessarily be vicariously enjoyed as neither he nor Michael could be present at either the Home or the School.

     My entrance into the Orphanage had not only placed me completely in Hirsh’s power but advantageously to his interest dropped me into the lowest social stratum in society.  American society is organized on racial lines rather than class lines.  The results are the same.  Thus all Whites are advantaged and all Negroes, for instance, are disadvantaged, regardless of actual circumstances.  All Jews are persecuted and all gois are persecutors regardless of actualities.  If we had been Blacks, Jewish, Japanese or whatever we could have appealed to the benevolence of the whole community for redress as a political entity.  The Blacks or Jews or Japanese would have put up a universal cry of injustice and sympathetic members of the unaffected groups would have rallied to their support.

     Such was not the case with us, we were White Judaeo-Christians within our own unsympathetic society.  We were unprotected, outside the law.  Our society could do what they would to us and we had no appeal, or anyone to appeal for us.  Within the classroom we were discriminated against as rigorously if not more so than the Blacks, who were just above us on the social scale.

     At Emerson the social gradation had been Eloy and Morlocks- betters and inferiors.  At Longfellow the Eloy and Morlocks still existed but we of the Children’s Home became a class of pariahs- White Niggers.  Our situation was somewhat analogous here in free America to the Jews of Nazi Germany.  This is no joke nor an exaggeration as my story will show.

     Like the Blacks we were not allowed to excel academically.  Unlike the Jews we had no social structure to retreat into that would honor our abilities and push us in the larger society.  We were alone and we ourselves eschewed solidarity.  Like Blacks they would say that we were naturally intellectually inferior.  They said so for the same reason, to allow free play would have meant that some Blacks and some of us would have surpassed their own giving the lie to their notion.  For either us or Blacks to excel over them would disprove their claim to superiority.  Thus a species of apartheid was practiced on both ourselves and Blacks.  This was in America the land of equality.  The land of moral superiority over South Africa or the old Soviet Union.

     During the times, during the forties and later, since the introduction of Blacks into the United States, there would be those who argued that Blacks did not have the mental capacity to excel intellectually.  Their studies can be based on whatever they choose; the truth is that Blacks were not allowed to excel.  They were not only denied the opportunity but those who persisted against the longest of odds were brutally beaten back.  If they persisted further they might probably be killed outright- lynched.  In a word, they were driven down so hard that their wills were broken.  Hope was denied them.  Their eyes glazed over and they just kept shufflin’ along.

     Shut up with their fellows in their segregated neighborhoods they developed their own mores, which, since they were denied White means and methods, became very individualistic, even outre.  These ways were then ascribed to nature and used to ridicule them.  Their intelligence was depicted as ludicrous.  They were called Shine and Darky.  Laughed at and ridiculed in schools, physically denied opportunity, let alone equality, there was no use trying.  What was the use?

page 96.

     Unable to break the White resistance to their pleas, they accepted their fate, even accepted inferiority, without further murmur.  So the Black nigger, the jigaboo, was created by American Biblical society.

     The same process was turned on we of the Children’s Home.

     The parented children refused to sit with us.  They invariably turned their backs to us, spoke to us over their shoulders.  We were constantly harassed and attacked physically.  Each day was a fight.  It was imperative that we be placed lower than them.  When divisions were made we were invariably in the second or lowest section.  To give the appearance of fairness, as the lawyers say, one of our members mgiht be placed in the first reading or arithmetic section, invariably a girl, but the rest of us had no hope of advancement whether we excelled or not.  Thus we had to rise above the worst rather than be developed by the best.  The parented children were in the first section whether they deserved it or not.

     At practice the parented kids were allowed to taunt us and harass us as we attempted the assignments.  We were made to feel inferior in every way; not least in our attire.  There was no rational excuse for our being dressed so badly.  The clothing donated to the Orphanage was of good if not superior quality.  The clothes we wore had actually cost more than many of the parented classmates.  True, house mothers like Mrs. Stout took some of the best to their children and it’s true that the Old Master Fiddler disposed of the very best for his profit, but our clothes could have fit, they could have been repaired, they could have matched.

page 97.

     The real reason was that we had to appear ludicrous and hence inferior.  Darwen, that small minded petty criminal ass insisted that we appear inferior to his own.  The parents insisted that we appear inferior to our classmates.  The community desired a group at which they could smile, shake their heads in disbelief and feel superior.  Just as Blacks were thought to be naturally inferior so were we White Niggers.  We should therefore wear badges of inferiority to avoid confusion with their own.  Just as the Nazis were making Jews assume the Yellow Star of David to identify them, so we were dressed like clowns.

     The Blacks had their skin to separate them, we were given ill fitting bizarre clothing.  The boys were just returning after having defeated intolerance over seas, or so we were told.

     The gulf between we two groups must have been enormous.  I know we looked different but the neurotic distortion of reality overruled for a time my conscious grasp of the facts.  Our walk, our talk, our bearing, our demeanor displayed the difference.

     David Hirsh, while keeping an eye on me, yes to took time from work to spy on me, as I and my fellows tramped the twelve blocks to school, appreciated the change in my status.  Word was passed to the Eloy of Longfellow and I was given special ostracization and harassment.

     Hirsh also pursued me at the Orphanage as he racked his brains to find ways to discomfort me.  I was already walking around like a clown at his behest but gratification was not enough for him he wanted to injure me.

page 98.

     He was a man prolific in devious ideas.  One day, or rather night, a couple of older boys, fifteen or sixteen, were scheduled to stay overnight.  The story was that they were in between foster homes and needed a place to stay for the night.  They were neither in between foster homes or jobs, they were thugs.  I doubt they had been inside a school for years.  We were scruffy but these guys were as coarse and crude as inner city dropouts.

     I had heard they were in the Home but I had neither seen them or had a desire to.  Lights had been turned out and we were all in bed when some kid a year younger than me crawled over to my bunk and asked me to into the bathroom with him.  I  was incredulous.  Why?  He went on about how these two guys were there and what terrific guys they were.  He insisted and kept on insisting.  Finally to shut him up I said I would go and take a look at them.

     The door to the bathroom was kept closed but the lights were always left on.  We stepped inside and here were these two incredible hoodlums with evil shining in their eyes.  They were waiting for me.  Evil people must wait a long time for a good person to go bad on his own, perhaps forever.  It’s nearly always necessary to give a good person a nudge, to entrap them if you can.  I think it is possible to cheat an honest man but a pure heart cannot be corrupted.

      I was unaware of homosexuality so I was not clear about their purpose.  They were there to penetrate me.  Rape was out of the question as my shouts would surely be heard.  These ugly guys were going to attempt seduction.  the conversation developed into broad hints of penetration which passed me by.  My little cicerone volunteered the suggestion that they show me their way of wiping one’s behind.  This technique consisted of pushing your middle finger through a piece of toilet paper and inserting the finger in the rectum.

     ‘Come on over here and I’ll show you.’  Said one of the cruds.

     We had been making a fair amount of noise.  Who should be on duty that night but Mrs. Miller.  I have no idea how many people were in on this or whether one of my peers meant to do me a disservice by informing on me, who knows, maybe it was just a friend trying to help me.

     Just as  I was about to direct a heated retort at the scum the door burst open with a rampant Mrs. Miller illumined in the door way.

     ‘You boys get out of there.’  She bellowed.  She had a wide leather belt in her hand with the added refinement of the buckle at the loose end.  Mrs. Miller knew how to get petty vengeance on men, she was always ready.  My cicerone bolted.  Some unlucky kid had a bed right in front of the door.  To avoid being smacked it was necessary to jump on him in his bed on the way out.  My cicerone timed it perfectly leaping off the unsuspecing boy as the belt buckle whizzed harmlessly behind him.

     ‘Come on out of there you miserable boys.  I’m not going to have any of that going on while I’m responsible whether I lose my job or not.’

page 100.

End of Clip 2, go to Clip 3

 

 

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I’m going to put up Vol. I of Far Gresham.  This is a novel of life in America that many people would deny.  I have been told by a few people that the story is a lie and could never happen in America.

The story is not a lie.  It is a fictionalized account of a true story.  In many ways it is horrifying but nevertheless it happened.

This Book is about 500 pages so that it will take a couple months to get up.  As usual I will post one day and proofread the copy the next.  Read along like an old newspaper serial if you like or come back at the end or drop in whenever you choose.  I think you’ll find it’s a good story.  This half takes place in the  1940s and the very early fifties.

Table Of Contents

Book I:  Deep Mud And Slick Tires

The Bridge

Book II:  Forty Miles Of Bad Road

Book III:  Warbaby Remembers/The Bible In America

Book IV:  Into The Mystic

 

Ah, Sinful nation,

folk whose guilt is heavy

oh, race of wrongdoers,

sons degenerate–

they have have abandoned the eternal.

———————

Your whole head is sick,

Your whole heart is diseased.

Isaiah 1: 4,5

 

Far Gresham

Book I:  Deep Mud And Slick Tires

May 1938-June 1946

1.

     I was born on May 26, 1938.  But like any other story mine has its antecedents long before the blessed event.  They involve the characters of my mother and father.  Their acts would have so much to do with what happened to me.  To a very large extent my life would be shaped not only by my character and deeds but as well by animosities created long before I was conceived.

     My mother’s family had come from Poland.  Her grandparents emigrated to the United States in the eighteen-nineties.  Landing at Castle Gardens they were conducted into the lower East Side, even to the fabled Hester Street.  They had found the East Side too congested, too inhospitable.  They longed more for the smell of the earth, the vista of more open skies.  Migrating West, they stopped at Pittsburgh for a couple years, but hearing of even greener pastures they turned the corner of Lake Erie and settled in the Valley of Michigan.  They were Jews.

     Their daughter, my grandmother, a hard bitter woman, abjured Judaism as soon as she was able to embrace Americanism.  She interpreted Americanism in the faith of her husband who was Pennsylvania Dutch, or as alternatively known, Rhineland German, whose family had found a place in the New Secular Order during the eighteenth century.  So you see I go way back.

     Thus, my mother, who was brought up Methodist, was shielded from my great-grandparents’ nationality by her mother.  My grandmother forbade her parents to even mention Judaism in front of her children.  You didn’t want to mess with that woman either.  She was hard.  My grandmother aspired for English husbands for her daughters.  She wanted in.

     The United States between the wars was still one of unassimilated or partially assimilated immigrants.  Contrary to the Melting Pot theory of immigration, large numbers of immigrants refused to be melted.  Many went to their graves speaking their native tongues.  Foreign accents were still very common when I was a boy.  National antecedents were still very important.  It would take the European and Pacific wars to smash down the big wrinkles of national rivalries. The wars didn’t do a very job at that.

     It was in this environment that the event occurred that would shape my history when it came my time to see the light of day.

     My mother lived out in the Thumb in a little town called Adrian for most of her youth.  As she entered high school her parents emigrated from the burg Adrian to the larger Valley.  No one should ever be compelled to change schools after the sixth grade. A person needs the security of having a place among classmates he knows and who know him.  There is nothing more difficult or dangerous to a person’s character than entering a new high school.

     My mother was a large robust woman who still had traces of the cow dung of the farm about her shoes.  The mildly sophisticated Valleyites smirked at her open frank manners as a hick from the sticks.  She was a good hearted naive innocent thing who wished well for everyone.  She could not comprehend why others should not be the same.  Her goodwill gradually became blunted when she realized, had it pressed home to her, that the others ridiculed her open frank, or hick, attitude.  Her cry of pain was such that only one who has had their kindness flung back in their faces can understand.  It’s something like the scream of the butterfly.

     You can imagine the attitude of the boys toward her.  Those knights without chargers, Prince Charmings sans titles, decided to break her down for easy seduction by refusing to date her.  Then when she was desperate from ostracization to move in for the easy kill.  My mother had been brought up by fervent rural preachers, she was a good Christian girl; she had a sense of her own worth.  Thus, rather than ripe for easy conquest, she was angered by the crude attentions thrust upon her by the sons of the Valley sophisticates.

     Her frustrations were increased by her mother’s insistence that she date only good English boys.  My mother had no trouble finding English boys but she couldn’t find a good one.

     Her freshman and junior years were thus spent rejecting the advances of some crude young fellows.  In her senior year, this tender maiden was asked out, perhaps politely commanded to go out would be a better description, with a boy named David Hirsh.  Her wounded heart was doubtful of David’s intentions, yet she was flattered.  David Hirsh was the son of one of the wealthiest families in the Valley.  As my mother’s family’s economic status didn’t register on a scale of one to ten, she really ought to have known better.  Rich boys ask poor girls out for one reason only.

     Still, as I said, my mother had arrived in the city with the naivte of a Christian country girl.  According to Christian doctrine if one has a pure heart one’s worthiness will eventually be recognized.  My mother considered herself worthy.  She thought perhaps her moment of recognition had come.  She was, in fact, more worthy than David Hirsh.

     David Hirsh’s family , as his name implies, was Jewish.  You’d have to ask my grandmother why she made this exception.  His family had emigrated during the German immigration of the 1840s to 1860s.  Hirsh’s ancestors actually came from Prague that ancient center of European Jewry.  His ancestors had actually lived against the wall of that famous cemetery in Prague where the saints of Judaism were buried.  The Hirshes were of ancient lineage.  David’s grandfather had arrived in the 1860s while the Civil War raged.  He stepped from Castle Gardens just as the flames of that great criminal uprising known as the Draft Riots were dying down.

     David’s ancestors were not without means.  His relatives in Europe had been well to do.  After mucking about in New York a bit trying to find a sense of direction, his grandfather found one and headed West into the Old Northwest.  Thus the eighties found David’s immediate ancestors in the Valley.  Baruch Hirsh, David’s grandfather, set up as a haberdasher.  Baruch’s son Solomon had a greater retail vision.  Baruch listened and was proud to have such a son.  the two developed Hershey’s Department Store.  Hershey’s was the marvel of Michigan retail North of Detroit, which was saying something.  But it has to be kept in perspective, there weren’t that many people North of Detroit at that time.

     David Hirsh was thus the heir apparent of the most successful store North of Detroit.  This was saying something unqualifiedly in both Valley terms  and the terms of the times of the Great Depression.  Hershey’s wasn’t doing as well as it mgiht have been in more affluent times but Solomon Hirsh had not been caught off base by the Crash of ’29 as many of his contemporaries had.  Solomon was not all that quick but neither was he that slow.  While others had plunged into the stock market heavily and stayed too long, he had been more moderate in his investing and more intelligent in realizing that nothing goes up forever.  He was patient and methodical.  He would be surprised but given time to analyze a situation he would always be able to perceive the general trend.  Now benefiting from his father’s wisdom, David Hirsh was enabled to cut a wide swath about town.  David had his own automobile, and he had a new one in his Junior year, that was not quite as snappy as his new one in his Senior year.  He drove it to school every day.  There was plenty of parking.  He bounced into the parking lot and slid to a stop in a stall in a manner that announced that David A. Hirsh was HERE.  He had the latest styles in clothing, every color and every shade of every design.  He had the latest styles and in abundance.  He was living the good life.

     Nature had also endowed him.  He was tall, dark and handsome.  Six feet two with just the right amount of wave to his hair.  He cut a fine figure about town.  Yet, there was just a hint of a lack of confidence in his posture; a slight diffidence in his walk.  Perhaps he felt apologetic for being Jewish.  He certainly, one couldn’t say he concealed it, but he didn’t like the fact brought out either.  To conceal this slight sense of inferiority he adopted an attitude of brash arrogance.  Yet to the observant eye, and there were not that many, he failed to pull the attitude off.  His attitude slid off to the edge of bumptiousness with an apparent streak of cruelty.

     Thus David Hirsh watched the tall buxom girl, my mother, who no one had been able to touch for two years and he fancied he was the man to break the bank at Monte Carlo.  Or, as they all talked among themselves, he was the one to get into her pants.

     David chose his friends from that group that was just beneath him in status as he was unable to be comfortable with his equals.  Among these friends he was in the habit of being boastful of his possessions and exploits.  They were sycophantic hoping for crumbs like riding around in his car.  Thus as his desire grew he began telling the boys what he was going to do to the Polish broad.

     Finally, one day he strode over to my mother and told her that she was going out with him.  My mother was both offended and flattered at the same time.  Her mixed feelings flashed before his eyes which David in his egoism took for the flush of pleasure.  She was uncertain of his intentions, nevertheless her tender heart was bursting for recognition of her virtues.  Her first two years had been painful; more in hope that her value was at last recognized, as the Good Book promised, rather than enamored of David she accepted, besides how could her mother complain when the catch of the school drove up for her.

     Here David Hirsh, as was his habit throughout life, began to dig his own grave.  Perhaps he over compensated for his sense, not really of inferiority, but his conspicuousness as a Jew, or what he thought was conspicuousness, for his American lineage was quite respectable.  He did not, as yet, look Jewish, yet he wore his Jewishness as a badge.  There were those to remind him of it if he forgot but then they had the same attitudes toward Poles, Italians and immigrants in general.  David was over tender in a rough and tumble America.  thus he did not wear his advantages with the calm air of the patrician, but with the bumptiousness of the upstart.  We are all innocents in that respect, we carry our weight not only as we would but as others permit us.  David saw himself as the persecuted exception and reacted accordingly.

     With my mother’s consent to a date he began to boast to the boys what he was going to do to the ‘Polack bitch’, when he was going to do it to her and where.  As always David Hirsh would have no one to blame but himself; as always he would refuse responsibility.

     Having primed both his fellows and himself, the big Saturday night arrived.  His car pulled away from the curb in front of my mother’s house with my mother in the passenger seat.  David’s confidence for the success of his plan would have been apparent to the Derby Ram.  My mother immediately realized her mistake; in his exultation David failed to note my mother’s instant disappointment and revulsion.  She looked away, her merit was yet to be validated.

     As her emotions overwhelmed her senses, she probably didn’t even hear David Hirsh ask why didn’t they dispense with the movie and just go for a drive in the country instead.  David with a deep chuckle interpreted her silence as acquiescence.  As she sat immersed in her misery David kept up a bright chat as his car surged impatiently for those country lanes.

     My mother had not yet emerged from her misery when she felt David’s hand on her thigh.  Reflexively she batted Hirsh across the mouth with the back of her hand.  David felt it but he felt more the mortification of his disappointed hopes.  In his anger he began to shout, scream at my mother that she must put out or get out.  His words roared past her like the winds of a hurricane.  Scarcely understanding David’s words but registering his dismissive gesture her hand mechanically reached for the door handle as her eyes filled with tears.

     Politely shutting the door she began the long walk home.

     Scarcely able to believe my mother’s reaction, David had been successful with this ploy before, he sat bouncing on the seat  clutching the steering wheel yelling, ‘Hey, hey.’  at her receding figure.  Beside himself with the humiliation of rejection David opened the car door, stood on the running board, and yelled epithets at her like Bohunk and Wop, erring in his geography  as the clarityof his mind shifted left through the reds.  People who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.  My mother shot back one word, the most feared word in the Jewish vocabulary,  ‘Kike!’  To gois the word has only one meaning that includes all Jews but David considered himself a German Jew .  The word kike is of German Jewish origin used to denigrate Eastern European Jews from the Russian Pale of Settlement.  Thus David took it in a double sense accentuating the German-Jewish meaning.  Technically speaking he wasn’t a kike.  The word was not only an insult to him, he thought, it wasn’t even used correctly.

     David immediately choked back his rage and calmly sat back behind the wheel.  Closing the door calmly and deliberately he thought:  So that was why she rejected him.  Because he was Jewish.  She was an anti-Semite.  Minds like David Hirsh’s can never differentiate between action and reaction.  Well he would be able to show her.  He put his car in gear moving slowly along until his rear wheels were abreast of my mother at which time he gave it all the gas the pedal allowed and popped the clutch showering her with gravel from the unpaved road.  Sliding to a halt he stood on the running board shouting back at her:  “Ha! Ha! Take that you bigoted bitch!’  How David twisted the facts around.  While he had the makings of a gentleman he didn’t have the wrapper.

page 10

     Acting on Hirsh’s boast of his anticipated conquest, his friends, unwilling to accept his bare word as to his success, had driven out to the location which Hirsh had advertised to them and secreted themselves  in the ditch.  At that time in the Valley the fields were drained into deep ditches which ran along either side of the road.  It had been his friends’ intention, when the car got rocking, to emerge from the ditch to enjoy the live sex act.  They had intended to clap and grunt to the rhythm, then run off cackling loudly.  Now they emerged from their ditch cackling loudly, but for a different reason.  In their car, driving past my mother who was trudging along disconsolately, they flung a few insults at her and drove away laughing madly.  My mother recognized them, intuited the whole situation and buried the pain in her heart.

     The following Monday Hirsh arrived at Valley High.  Putting on his most boastful strut he walked up to his locker where the boys were waiting for him with an air of expectation.  They were obvious enough that David should have seen through them, but with the confidence of obtuseness he plunged ahead.  Assuming the smile of one who knows but who has to be coaxed to tell he quietly went abut stowing his jacket with a soft ‘Hi, boys.’ tossed off in their direction.  To a chorus of ‘How’d it go, Dave?’ he dropped his jaw open shoved his tongue into his left cheek and beamed a ‘Wouldn’t you like to know?’ look at them.  They were ready and they wanted to know.

     The boys began a series of innocent questions, then eased into a series of more knowing questions.  David looked at them sharply.  The thought:  Hey, how could you guys know that? began to form in his mind, when, the answer quickly following, slammed against the inside of his forehead crushed like popcorn under the wheels of a locomotive.  His pained expression brought forth the merriment of his friends.  He had set himself up, been had, and been had bad.  His friends, who chafed under their inferiority to him took full advantage of his embarrassment.  Nor when he turned fifty would they let him forget it.  Big boys don’t cry, at least they don’t let others see them doing it.  Excusing himself, David Hirsh went home and vomited in the toilet.

     My poor mother who, had she fornicated, would have paid a dear price for her lapse of character, now paid for her integrity.  David Hirsh was that type of person who found slights and insults to avenge where none had been intended or even existed.  He had dug his own grave, he blamed everyone else because he had to lie in it.  Unable to accept responsibility for his own actions he accused my mother of intentionally humiliating him.  He began the whisper campaign.  He changed and distorted the facts; he didn’t fail to mention that her retort had been ‘kike’ but he left out that it had been a retort to his own insults.  His torts disappeared in the telling.

     On this note their senior year ended.  Their lives had nothing in common.  My mother went her way, Hirsh went his.  But David Hirsh was neither the forgiving or forgetting kind.  David believed, quite sincerely, that my mother had humiliated him and had set him up for humiliation on purpose.  He meant to have vengeance he could feel.  There was not enough of it in the whole world.

     Sometime in the summer after graduation my mother met my father.  He was a nice looking boy who had graduated in her class.  He had an English name, my grandmother was satisfied.  David Hirsh, who in this same summer was busy with his own romance took time to notice.  He was determined to scotch her romance if he could.  He was determined that she was not to find happiness.  Hirsh sent a couple of his friends to pay attention to my mother.  If he could divert her attention from my father perhaps he could ruin the romance.  Once the romance was destroyed then his friends would lose interest in my mother and she would be left empty handed.  David would gain some satisfaction, not enough, but some.

     My father found Hirsh’s flies buzzing around my mother.  They in their turn made knowing comments about my mother.  My father was not a stupid man.  He looked at those guys, knew who their leader was and was vaguely aware of the situation between my mother and Hirsh through high school gossip.  My father did not come from an affluent background.  His people were hillbillies from Kentucky.  He had despised Hirsh from afar because of his show of wealth.  Now that the equality of school was a thing of the past and economic shadings were being forced upon him, he was developing a real resentment against the presumptions of the rich.  Thus he easily traced the problem to its source.  My father was not known for his placid temper.

     While Hirsh was attending a Sunday Ice Cream Social in Pfeffercorn Park, my father strode into the park and confronted Hirsh.  Bad form but right action.  In the resulting exchange of words, David made the mistake of asking:  ‘Yeah, Gresham, what are you going to do about it?’  My father belted Hirsh in the mouth and knocked him down.  ‘That’s what I’m going to do about it.  And there’s more where that came from if you don’t lay off.’ he said as he walked away.  To add to David’s chagrin he was knocked down and didn’t jump up in front of his soon to be fiancee, Beverly Webster.  Still on the ground he uttered dire threats as my father stalked out of the park.

     ‘The sins of the father…’ Hirsh muttered as he attempted to retrieve his dignity and get up,  ‘The sins of the father…’

     Nevertheless he did not desist; he only became more circumspect.  He was learning to become a man.

     About a year later both my mother and father as well as David Hirsh and Beverly Webster were married.  Beverly Webster was the daughter of Big Ben Webster who owned Webster’s Coal Company.  The Websters, with a monopoly of coal in the Valley, at that time few houses were heated by oil or natural gas, were probably the most influential family in the Valley.  The union of the two families was the sensation of the season.  As my mother had been instructed to get an Englishman, David had been instructed to find a wife of old American stock.  He had; the Websters had landed in 1669.

     The wedding was celebrated in the Valley News under the headline:  The Melting Pot Bubbles.  David Hirsh was billed as a son of the God of Justice, while Beverly Webster was referred to as a daughter of the Religion Of Love.  Two biblical traditions were joined as one.  Very romantic.  After a couple of paragraphs gushing over how Old World differences were being filed away to create an entirely new and golden people, my how they could ramble in those days, the paper got into the details of the wedding which were lavish.

     David kept an eye on my mother and father, against both of whom he now bore a grudge.  Hershey’s, as a department store was a major financial strut of the Valley News.  David used his influence to keep the notice of my parents more modest wedding out of the paper.  They complained, of course, but were given the glib excuse thast it was an oversight.  My mother actually believed such trash.  She believed that things happened, that coincidence abounds.  Things don’t happen, they are caused.  Coincidences don’t abound, they are more often planned.

     After a time I was given the gift of light, a month before the first Hirsh offspring, their son Michael.

2.

     To all appearances David Hirsh had a brilliant future before him.  But rather than counting his blessings he dwelt on his grievances.  His grievances ate like chancres at his soul.  He couldn’t forget that each of my parents had frustrated his designs.  Like most elitists he believed he was entitled to succeed; failure of his plans meant to him that his rights had been violated.  He now set out to destroy my parents marriage, and he did.

     My father had apparently expected to live on love as he had no steady job.  It was still the tail end of the depression before the Wars provided steady employment for millions: men at war and women in the factories.  He had no skills, we had very little money.  My parents lived in a small little house, just a notch above a shack, really, out in the numbers off Janes Road.  I can’t remember the number of the street.  Thus after a fairly desperate life in high school my mother was faced with a bleak impoverished existence.

     One would think that Hirsh would have settled for that, but he didn’t.  David sent seducers to dazzle her with the appearance of affluence.  She told my father she was neither dazzled nor seduced.  My father refused to believe it.  Thus between his embarrassment at not being able to provide for us adequately and his suspicions about my mother’s virtue, he began to have fits of violence.  He had always had a temper; now, unable to reach his enemies he began to take it out on my mother.

     When I was two and a half he became angry with my mother and began to beat her in my presence.  My father had knocked my mother down and was bending over her when I leaped on his back demanding he leave my mother alone.  Fist still clenched and raised before him, my little arms clutched around his neck, he glanced over his left shoulder and gave me a look of the most inexpressible sorrow.  Shame had overcome him.  I read in his eyes that he meant to desist.

     At that moment my mother leapt up.  She lifted me off my father’s back and stood me up against the wall.  She said:  ‘Farley, honey, stay out of this or you’ll get hurt.’  Then she went to assume her former position to be beaten.

     The human mind reacts to information in peculiar ways.  One’s character is made up, not so much by the information presented to one’s mind as by one’s interpretation of it.  My young unformed mind grappled with this information.  My brain interpreted the information as that one was not to defend oneself.  One was not to attempt to alter the course of events.  Thus since then, I, while unafraid, have made little effort to defend myself.  I have let events take their course.

     Shortly after this instance my mother and father parted.  She filed for divorce.  Her life to that point had been one of bitter disappointments.  Her attitude toward life changed after her divorce.  She then had to go to work.  We went to live at her mother’s.  There, perhaps because of the dazzle Hirsh’s friends had shown her, ashamed of the poverty of life with my father, she determined to ‘better’ herself.

     In the manner of those who have known poverty the clothes she chose to express her betterment were a bit on the flashy side.  the Fortress Of God Congreational Church was considered the elite of churches in the Valley; all the prosperous families attended it.  For some reason my mother thought she would be welcome among those very Christian brethren of the religion of love.

     Fortress Congregational  happened to be the church that David and Beverly Hirsh attended.  David was Jewish but was lax and unobservant.  Affluence and a lack of antagonism caused David to be unconcerned about religion.  He and Beverly had never discussed religion before marriage.  So when Michael was born Beverly automatically began to attend Fortress Congregational.  David had not objected and even accompanied her.  Thus David attended Fortress Congregational with Beverly without discussion or even thinking about it.

     Beveryly was quite proud of David.  She considered him a catch.  The idea of ‘catch’ went beyond his appearance and social standing which were, of course, important to her, but with her biblical Protestant upbringing which taught her to reverence the mythic quality of Israel and Israelites she prized him especially as ‘her tall Israelite.’  Israelite should not be confused with Jew.  True, as an Israelite he must have been a Jew but for Beverly David stepped straight out of the pages of the Old Testament bypassing all the history between.  She saw him not only as a direct lineal descendant of the Patriarchs Abraham, Isaac and Jacob but almost as contemporary with them.  All the mythos which the Protestants invest in Genesis and Exodus was transferred by Beverly onto David’s shoulders.  The whole divine afflatus, as it were, she invested in David Hirsh.

     David himself, unaware of the mystery invested in the Old Testament by Protestants, and quite mystified by some of their interpretations of that text, was quite unknowing of the real reason Beverly loved him so.  He accepted the adoration she gave him which was never more apparent than while in Fortress Of God Congregational.

     This glow from Beverly was actually part of why he enjoyed attending church with her.

     The two with little Michael were two pews ahead of us as my mother and I took our seats.  Hirsh, with half an eye on incoming worshippers, had recognized her immediately and turned his back so as not to be seen.  My mother did not notice him.

     Not yet three, I was scooting about the aisles, probably trying to get the attention I promptly received.  The ‘sins of my father’ descended upon me.  Here before the God of Justice in His citadel of love, Hirsh grabbed me by the scruff of the neck, thrust me back at my mother, hissing between his teeth:  ‘Keep the little bastard quiet.’

     ‘Don’t take it out on my little boy.’  My mother pleaded.

     ‘Yes!’ Hirsh hissed.  ‘Yes!’

     We didn’t go back.

3.

     Our move to my grandmother’s was more fateful than I might have thought.  Had we stayed out on Janes Road I would have entered kindergarten in a different school district.  My grandmother lived in the Emerson school district.  Emerson district just happened to be the one within which the Hirshes resided although in a better neighborhood.  So when I entered kindergarten Michael Hirsh took the news home to his father.

     David listened, pursed his lips just so, raised his eyebrows as the cat who has just spotted the mouse, picked up his newspaper and walked slowly and thoughfully over to his recliner.  He calmly slid into the seat easing the chair back as he raised the paper to cover his eyes and became absorbed in thought.  Wasn’t God good to him?  he thought.  He had delivered his enemy into his hands.

     What did David Hirsh lack to enjoy the most pleasant of lives?  Nothing.  His pregnant wife cooked in the kitchen, his son played on the floor at his feet, his roof was freshly tiled, the check to pay for it had cleared and left a goodly balance behind in the bank.  Could David have counted his blessings this story would not be told.  But he couldn’t.  He could not change his habit of clinging to old grievances.  The poison red berries of yesteryear’s harvest had drenched his brain with their bitter juice.  He demanded vengeance for injuries that had been returned on himself because of his need to inflict injury to prove his pre-eminence to himself.  The seeds sown in the Old Testament of the Bible provide but a bitter harvest.  Rather than embracing a joyous life, David pursued death to prove himself alive.

page 21.

     David’s grandfather Baruch who had established the basis of the family fortune had, in David’s view, been compelled to live the life of a nonentity.  His father, Solomon, while respected, had been denied the ascendancy which, in David’s view, God had intended him to have.  The way appeared clear in 1943 for David to achieve the status the Hirshes believed was theirs by the divine right of their personal god.  Still David would have to work for his position.  The fourth generation Hirsh, Michael, was being groomed to inherit the position of arbiter, Prince, of the Valley.  In 1943 the Hirshes and Websters appeared to be an unbeatable combination.  The scions of the Hershey Department Store and Webster Coal Co. fortunes had determined that Michael Hirsh was to be a leader of men.  They foresaw a time when he would assume the title of King of the Valley.  This was not an unwarranted hope.

     There was a fatal flaw to their plan.  Rather than training Michael to leadership traits, more effort was being put into the training of his companions, who were half the kindergarten class to be submissive.  He and his friends were the Eloy of the class.  Below Michael and the Eloy were we Morlocks who were expected to be servile, hewers of wood and carriers of water.  Here too the Scions erred, for I was not by nature a Morlock.

page 21.

     But David sat and considered.  Having sat and considered he concluded.  He gave Michael his instructions.  I was to be beneath the Morlocks.  I was to be the least of the lesser, the most bottom of all.  I was to be denied and humiliated at every turn.

     David and the parents of the Eloy were influential.  Our teacher acceded to their requests, she was even attuned to respond to hints.  The Eloy were given preference.  The Morlocks fell in behind.  I demanded equality.  During the first part of the year I was fairly successful.  But having attained my rights the Eloy failed to cooperate.

     The teacher had constructed a boat out of boxes and chairs and what not.  We all wove Indian file through this boat on an imaginary voyage.

     One of us led the procession making all the whistle noises.  I was entranced.  Michael led the first day, succeeded on the next day by the Eloy in turn.  When the Eloy had finished the game was discontinued rather than have Morlocks leading Eloy.  I demanded an opportunity to lead the procession, but the lesser and the least were not intended to be leaders of the Eloy.  I insisted and of course in Democratic America the teacher had to concede.

page 22.

     I proudly took my place as leader and the Morlocks fell in behind.  The Eloy, giving me reproachful venemous looks refused to participate.  I had transgressed on their aristocratic rights.  Michael Hirsh carried his tale to David Hirsh.  David gave instructions and efforts to isolate me were redoubled.  They were also successful.  It was David Hirsh’s idea to avenge himself on my mother and father by destroying my life.  He hoped to convince me that I was worthless.  I’m sure he would have succeeded.  The rejection which I could not understand left me more and more despondent as the year wore on.  Such treatment continued for years would have left me abject.  I was as good as lost when an event occurred in the spring of kindergarten which had an astounding effect not only on my life but on David and Michael Hirsh’s lives as well.

     The wars in Europe and the Pacific raged requiring ever larger complements of men.  Employers sought workers anywhere to keep production going.  Women of Rosie the Riveter fame entered manufacturing in numbers but they were not enough besides they couldn’t do the heavy work.  You need real slaveys for that.

     The government and employers went into the South and moved Negroes North and West.  Prior to the wars there had been few Black Folk in the Valley.  Then, in 1943, numbers of Negroes, as they were respectfully known, began to arrive.  The inevitable friction arose between Blacks and Whites.  Of course, today no one will admit to ever having been resentful of Black Folk; nevertheless, then as now, they were expected to live and stay in their own quarter of town.

page 23.

     In 1943, as the school year was nearing its end, it was announced to us, or word got out, that three Black children, Negroes, would be joining our class.  Without our, or at least my, knowing it the knowledge which had reached adult circles before us created a furor among them.  There were great racial distinctions made at that time.  The South was still separate but equal.  The doctrine had great appeal in the North also if not put into those exact words.  The parents of our students were infuriated that their children would have to attend school with Negroes.

     At the same time forces were working to integrate the races.  The two sides came into conflict in the kindergarten at Emerson.  David Hirsh and his allies refused to have Negroes attend Emerson.  His opponents pointed out that the law required all children to attend school; the Negro children could be no exception.  All people were equal before the law.  The Negroes would attend Emerson.

     Hirsh and his allies lost the first round.  The Negro children were entered at Emerson.

     David Hirsh made up his mind that if they did attend they would be sorry.  They were not to be received in good grace.  Michael Hirsh and the Eloy began circulating among the Morlocks advising them that the Negroes would be arriving and on what day.  It was made emphatically clear that no one was to play with them or talk to them.  I was already in that category so I was not startled by their intent.  The Morlocks acquiesced with their usual placidity.  I’ve never had to wonder why they chew gum.

page 24.

     Then the Negro kids arrived.  Hostility toward them turned the atmosphere vicious.  They were studiously and contemptuously avoided.  As recess time arrived we were again warned not to play with them.  Michael Hirsh singled me out; he made a point of wagging his finger at me, sternly looking at me while he admonished me.  Perhaps he remembered when I led the Morlocks through the boat against his wishes.

     The Eloy filed out first followed by the Negroes.  As usual I was required to bring up the rear.  As I say, I was nearly isolated, no one could play with me.   I didn’t understand why; thus I was developing a listless indifferent attitude that would have gratified David Hirsh’s vengeful wishes except for what happened next.

     By the time I got outside I saw that the Negro kids had been compelled to sit on the edge of the sandbox.  Michael Hirsh with the massed Eloy at his back was standing over the Negroes wagging his everlasting finger at them.  As I slouched up I heard him telling them that they were to sit on the sandbox all through recess and not move a kinky hair.  I was aghast.  I was prepared not to talk to them, but to compel them to sit on the sandbox was criminally unfair.  I thought Michael and the Eloy were going too far.

     As I was an outcast I had nothing to lose.  I told the Negroes to ignore Michael.  I told them to get up and the four of us would go off and play together.  Michael came unglued.  He started shouting at me to watch my step.  I raised my fists and told the Negroes to get up and we would fight them.

page 25.

     Michael faced the first opposition of his life.  He recoiled back into the massed Eloy, it was a fatal mistake.  He was being groomed as a leader but the Eloy were being trained as followers.  Michael had never been tested.  He failed his first test.  The sword remained in the stone.

     I had embraced Sunday School morality; I knew that the God of Justice was on my side; I knew that the Religion of Love forbade this treatment of the Negroes, not to mention myself.

     From within the Eloy Michael’s eyes narrowed.  Shaking his finger through the mass of Eloy, he shouted;  ‘You shut up Gresham, and get back in your place.’  My place was where I made it.  I was doubly angry now.  I exhorted the Negroes to get up and we would fight them.  The Negroes meekly declined the exert themselves for their freedom.  They left me hanging out there to dry.

     Left with nothing to fight for I was fearful as to what would happen next.  Nothing.  I wandered away; the Negroes accepted their place on the bench.  Michael and the Eloy glowered after me.

     Oddly, my resistance had completely shattered Michael Hirsh’s self-confidence.  His image of himself as leader was shaken to the foundation.  Neither had his conduct gone unnoticed by the Eloy.  Doubts had entered the girls’ minds; an internal smile of satisfaction beamed from the eyes of the boys.

     David Hirsh sat upright glowering in his recliner listening as Michael sobbed out his tale of humiliation to him.  He knew exactly what the scene had meant to his aspirations for Michael.  In his vanity he hoped that Michael’s reputation could be recovered.  In his heart he knew that even with his influence and position it could not.  Like a woman’s love, once gone, forever gone.

page 26.

     David sat for a moment then he dismissed Michael, pushed the paper from his lap and moved slowly and painfully into his bedroom.  He closed and locked the door.  Then he walked into the far corner of the room.  Placing a hand on each wall he leaned his head against the right angle where the walls joined and began to sob softly.

     ‘Oh, God.’  He thought. ‘Where is thy justice in this world.  How much shame and humiliation must I bear.’

     As with my mother and father David forgot what he had done to cause his own humiliation.  But David thought that he was God’s favorite child and that he was entitled to prevail.  Merely resistance to his wishes in itself was unjustifiable and unforgivable conduct.  God’s favor to David was shown by his wealth and position.  If he were not better than others then God would not have given him his advantages.  The inferiority of others was thus proven.  It was bad enough that God had allowed my mother to humiliate him; but then my father and now me.  David A. Hirsh’s son, his heir, the once and future king had been humiliated by a virtual outcast.

     Had David Hirsh been a wiser, more philosophic man he would have examined his behavior, known himself, adjusted his behavior to the circumstances and been a happier man.  But the poison red berries sank more deeply into his mind.  Like Abraham of old, David believed that he was talking to God.  Yea verily, he heard a voice within his mind say:  ‘You will be avenged, my son David, you will be avenged.  You shall see your enemies prostrate themselves before you.’  He understood this wish of his mere ego to be permission from God to smite his enemy hip and thigh.  Satisfied, David Hirsh choked back his sobs, ordered his face, opened the bedroom door and reassumed his place in his recliner as though nothing had happened.  Still, he was thinking.

     He knew what he had to do, or wanted to do, to avenge his son’s humiliation.  Just as he had dug his own grave boasting to his friends about my mother, he now began to dig it deeper.  The year was nearly over.  He had not time to devise a plan to humiliate me sufficiently.  Everyone was forbidden to be seen speaking to me.  I played alone for the rest of the year.

     On the last day of school as I was leaving Michael ran up behind me, leaving plenty of room for a safe retreat, to hiss at the back of my head:  ‘We’re going to get you next year, Gresham.’

     I returned a standard retort:  ‘You and what army.’  But my brow furrowed in genuine concern.  Internally I trembled because I knew he did have an army.  I was fearful because I knew I wouldn’t be able to resist it.

page 28.

5.

     The stars that play with the laughing dice chuckled at us both.  I was to get a temporary reprieve; David Hirsh was given a temporary frustration.

     My mother, since her divorce, wanted to ‘live.’  She was to pursue that phantom that invariably ends in disaster.  I had become a burden to her.  It would be easier to ‘live’ without me around.  She decided to farm me out.  Blessed Salvation, she found a family over on the West Side in the Thoreau School District to board me.  I was delivered from the lion’s den; I heaved a sigh of relief. 

     On the one hand deliverance but on the other rejection by my mother.  I don’t believe adults, parents, have any idea of the trauma such a situation has on a child.  There is no way that it cannot disturb a child’s emotions no matter what his external deportment may be.  There is no argument to be given, no line of reasoning to follow by which you can explain his abandonment  to the child.  Abandonment is abandonment, partial or complete.  There is no way, no matter how frequently you visit the child, to make him understand why his mother doesn’t want him.

     Nor was my mother overly discreet.  I wasn’t in rags by any stretch of imagination but I was wearing ill-fitting hand-me-downs.  When my mother did visit, which wasn’t often, she always seemed resplendently dressed.  I was too young to understand, but it made me uneasy to see my mother looking so well while she left me with these people who didn’t, couldn’t love me.

     My kindergarten memories, my mother’s abandonment and this new family all contributed to a mental malaise that expressed itself in aberrant behavior.  The fear of Michael Hirsh and his retaliation was a palpable presence with me.  My young mind no longer associated my fear with the incident of the Negroes.  My fear was disociated from its cause.  My fear was a fear of vague hatred that haunted both my waking and sleeping hours.  Entering the first grade class at Thoreau was no comfort and I had to make my way in my shades of mental distress among a new set of classmates who had of course been forewarned by Hirsh.

     The family with whom I boarded was named Smith.  They were decent enough folks.  They had five other children among whom I was expected to integrate myself immediately.  As might be expected I was given no time to acclimate myself; nor, quite possibly in such circumstances could any be expected.  A young mind still cannot make such a diffiuclt tranistion without support and understanding.  I had no support; I was an outsider who brought them money each week.

page 30.

     They as adults should have expected me to be somewhat reticent and unruly as I adjusted to my new circumstances.  I had no place with them.  I was difficult but I was gradually learning to accept them.  They were learning to reject me. 

     I would not like to have been imprinted by the Smiths.  They were not my kind of people.  Thus rejection by them which was certainly very painful was probably not the worst thing that could have happened to me.  I would rather be outside a group of people that I don’t like then inside a group of people one has to bear.

     I had only been with them nine months.  I was about to accept them as part of my permanent environment when they threw me a thunderbolt.  It came about that they were having a major party.  I was not to be allowed to attend.  My mother was to take me for the evening.  She acted as though this were an imposition for her.  Thus I entered a no man’s land in my mind.  I was a burden for my mother and unwanted by the Smiths.  Just as I was about to accept the Smiths they began to push me out of the nest into the void. 

     My mother came to pick me up in her ridiculous clothes.  A desperate feeling began to rise in me for I already considered my mother a stranger.  She didn’t want me and now if the Smiths rejected me where would I go?  More pertinent, who would I be?

page 31.

     I was extremely distraught when my mother brought me back.  I thought I had better be good.  I wanted to demonstrate my solidarity with the Smiths.  I had already made up my mind that my future lay with them rather than my mother.  They had purchased a carton of ice cream sandwiches for their party.  The sandwiches were packed in dry ice to keep them cold.  The box was sitting on top of the counter.  I thought by eating a sandwich I could retroactively participate in the party and be one with the family.  I was prepared at that moment to be ‘good.’  The box was above my head and I stretched my hand up over the top of the box to grab a sandwich; I came up with a cake of dry ice instead.  I didn’t know dry ice, had never seen it.  Expecting the cold of the ice cream sandwich I was more surprised than hurt by the burning sensation of the dry ice.  All my fears crystallized around that burning cake of dry ice.  I could veritably see them taunting me.  I screamed and cried out of all proportion to the pain.  It wasn’t that easy to be ‘good.’

     The adults couldn’t understand my reaction.  What good is it to grow old if one doesn’t grow wise?  It was incumbent on them to understand.  Mr. Smith, leaning comfortably against the counter looked complacently down at me than looked at my mother with a wry face as if to say:  ‘See!’

     They had no compassion on that little boy.  I was turned out with just a couple months left in the school year.  I was to be expected to ingratiate myself into a new class.  My mother found a new place for me with a family called Johnson.  The Johnsons lived on the East Side.  I shuddered when I learned that they lived in the Emerson school district.

page 32.

     A great groundswell of terror rose at the base of my brain and rose in great swirling spirals to overwhelm my brain.  The evil that I feared had come to pass.  At the same time the moorings of my life had been cast from their bollocks.  First my mother had rejected me; then the Smiths; now my mother again passed me on to a new family.  I had been rejected by the Smiths just at the point that I was about to transfer my trust and affection to them.  I was not capable of accepting the Johnsons as more than temporary.  The effect on my attitude was corrosive.  I could not explain the turmoil of my mind to them.  Oddly, I think, the adults were incapable of understanding that a child is not an adult, even an adult has difficulty adapting to abrupt changes.  The adults were obtuse well beyond their years.  I was about seven.  I was about to be written off as a troublesome and disorderly child.  As dark as my childhood had been, yet darker days lay ahead.  I do not know how I or other children survive such ordeals.

     Mrs. Johnson herself was a lovely woman who administered a lovely home.  Everything that I appreciate of beauty can be traced to that sojourn.  The constant agitation from the five children at the Smiths was missing as Mrs. Johnson had only one daughter who was my age.  There was a placidity to her manner of living that would have placated my anxieties except for the torment that awaited me at Emerson.

    I reappeared among the Eloy and Morlocks at Emerson in late April of the first grade.  I appeared as a rock thrown in a schoolyard.  I felt the shudder of recognition and heard the muted ‘He’s back.’ whispered as I walked past.  The incident of our antipathy had been forgotten by both of us.  They merely knew that I had repudiated their authority; as always in such situations that was a capital crime.  I only knew that they hated me,  I didn’t know why but I had transferred the cause to myself.  I felt a vague sense of guilt.  I felt their enmity but I didn’t know why I was hated.

page 33.

     I had completely surprised them.  It was too late in the year for them, or rather for David Hirsh, to evolve a plan to punish me for being an uppity ‘nigger.’  David and the Eloy would spend the summer preparing for my reception in the second grade.  For the interim they contented themselves with hazing me continually.  They committed little spiteful acts.  As usual they were all committed at my back.  Michael Hirsh would never take the chance of confronting me on a one to one basis.  The teacher observed these acts but did nothing to correct the situation.  Whether she felt unequal to the task or had been warned off by David Hirsh I don’t know.  What I realized was that I was completely on my own.  Authority, in the person of the teacher, would not interest itself in the justice of my case.  My mother was no help and Mrs. Johnson was beyond the reach of my ability to explain.

     Thus the school year ended to my great relief.  My summer was made a purgatory to the hell that awaited me in the second grade.  I was new to the neighborhood and had to make friends.  The Eloy kept a close watch over me.  As I found someone to play with, one of the Eloy showed up, a few words were said and I was shunned.  My feelings of desperation grew as I tried to amuse myself.  I gave evidence of unexlainable apprehensions in front of Mrs. Johnson who merely shook her head.  Actually adults are not the brightest of people.

page 34.

     David and Michael Hirsh had already, or would easily have achieved my psychological destruction if they had continued the same course and let well enough alone.  That was not in David Hirsh’s nature.  He demanded a blood sacrifice.  He demanded that which neither he nor Michael could ever have, homage.

     A series of events, perhaps for God to test David, were beginning for David Hirsh which he would be unsuccessful in meeting.  In the spring of the first grade a long awaited event had come to pass just before I transferred back to Emerson.  It was the joyous event of VE Day, Victory in Europe.  Hitler had gone up in the acrid fumes of a gasoline fed pyre.  The Nazis had been run to ground.  David’s live was changed forever.  All his relationships changed like a stack of marbles in an earthquake.

     The Smiths and I had gone down to a row of shops surrounding the Court Street theatre.  There the people were shouting and dancing in the street.  I looked on in amazement, unable to comprehend.

     ‘What’s the matter little boy, aren’t you happy?  The boys are coming home.’

page 35.

     I didn’t even know the boys had been gone.  I was just at the age when the war was all I had ever known.  It was normal to me.  When I still lived over on Grimm Street with my grandmother, planes had flown overhead filling the sky with printed fliers.  Tens of thousands of them had fluttered down, waffling through the air as we leaped to snatch them from the sky.  An older boy said that they said:  ‘Buy War Bonds.’  I had rushed home  to exhort my grandmother to buy bonds.

     Someone had nailed a poster to all the telephone poles.  On the right was a gross caricature of Hideki Tojo, little round glasses, near sighted squint and buck teeth.  One the left was a picture of that most common of common men, Adolf Hitler.  I had stood studying them wondering what they meant.  Then, in the spring of 1945 the European War had ended.

     As the Allied troops occupied Germany horrid rumors were proved to be true, but, even then, we all had a hard time believing them.  The Nazis had extermination camps where they killed millions of people.  There had been rumors beginning in 1943, not that I heard them, that the Nazis were systematically killing Jews but they had been dismissed as wartime propaganda.  Now the rumors proved true.  The Jews had been the Nazis’ primary target.

     David had been blithely going through life not too concerned about his Jewishness.  Indeed, for years he had been attending the Fortress Of God Congretational with Beverly.  The hold of Judaism on the majority of Jews had been as strong as ever, but a segment, David Hirsh was among them, had become lacksadaisical and nonobservant.  They might easily have slipped away into the American ethos.

     The confirmation of the existence of the extermination camps crossed David’s mind like one of those atomic clouds in the movies that mutated all those it passed over.  A new man was born.  David had drifted from his people; Michael had virtually no Jewish education.  David now began to reverse this situation as he realized that he was above all else, a Jew.  He, like every other errant Jew, was called back to the fold.  As a rabbi was to say:  I have been an American all my life but I have been a Jew for four thousand years.  The Nazis had called every person with a Jewish grandparent a Jew.  The method was universal, there was nothing unusual in it. All peoples, the Jews themselves, required both sets of grandparents to represent the nationality if one were truly to reflect the ethos of the nation.  But to the Jews of the time it indicated that there was no escaping one’s Jewishness.  Thus if it had happened here, and in the hysteria of the times it was thought possible if not probable there would be no escape for any Jew.  The feeling arose that once a Jew always a Jew, the Jewish nation cohered ever more strongly.

      The return to the fold created troubling difficulties for David, for he had married a goish wife, a shiksa.  Descent in Jewish families is traced through the female.  Thus a child of a shiksa by a Jewish fathere is not automatically a Jew,  whereas a child fathered by a goi on a Jewish mother is.  Therefore, technically, Michael Hirsh was not a Jew.  While he would now be brought up as a Jew, he nevertheless would have a lower status within the Jewish community.  Socially Michael was at the top of the ladder; in Jewish circles he was at the bottom.  His son’s situation rankled David Hirsh and embittered him further.

page 37.

     With his reattachement to Judaism and his estrangement to the goi world, David Hirsh found his relationship with Beverly enter a different period.  Not that Beverly would abandon her ‘tall Israelite’ but their relationship changed and became a little more distant because of Beverly’s relationship to the two worlds.  A little sponge rubber wedge entered their relationship.  Beverly found that, while it was easy for David Hirsh to be accepted into her, for want of a better word, Christian community, it was impossible for her to find acceptance in his smaller much more exclusive community now traumatized into actual hysteria by the news from Europe.

     The Jews confused Hitler and the Nazis with Christianity.  Over the ages their arch enemy had been their offshoot, Catholicism, or as they generalized it, Christianity.  Thus the Nazis seemed to be the culmination of the Jewish conflict with Christianity.  This was not true.  The Nazis were outside Christianity.  But now Beverly was received as a quasi-perpetrator of the extermination camps.  Her presence made the Jewish congregation uneasy.

     For her part she simply wasn’t Jewish.  She didn’t have the Jewish education or manner.  The God Of Justice looked on the Religion of Love from a higher mount.  Beverly’s life took on an ambiguous quality that left her unhappy just where the limes and sublimes met.  Thus additional discord was introduced into David Hirsh’s life.  Changes which he wasn’t actually aware of nor that he could understand altered his life.  More were  to come.  Just as mine, his problems were only beginning.  His hand rose to stroke his chin as wonder crossed his mind, then it slid down to his throat on the way to clutch his heart.

     Through the spring and summer these influences jostled in his mind crying for a solution which his inherent bitterness would never allow him to resolve.  Rather than turning toward the light he allowed the darkness to grow in his mind.  Slowly his anger and frustration turned in my direction and centered on me.  I was the defenseless object of his irritation.  During that bright time of year he mulled over darkest thoughts on how to best punish me.

     As he sat in his recliner Hirsh concentrated on what he thought was the humiliation I had caused Michael.  David had won the second round over the Negroes at Emerson; they had finished out kindergarten but had been put in another school district at year end.  David equated me with Negroes.  Like them I had no social status.  I, a mere nobody had dared to challenge the future king.  Nor, in David’s mind, had I given Michael a fair chance.  I had appeared out of nowhere, I had surprised his boy, just like Hideki Tojo and the Japs had surprised us at Pearl Harbor.  I was therefore a dirty fighter.  Commingling his anger with me he confused his relationship with my mother and father, transferring his machinations against them into unwarranted humiliation of himself.  David Hirsh and his ilk never accept responsibility for their actions.  When their own plans misfire it’s always someone else’s fault.  The plan was perfect except that those people ruined it.

     The worst of Michael’s situation was that my resistance had sapped the foundation of his authority.  Whereas before he had been the young prince among the Eloy his conduct on that day had reduced him to primus into pares, a mere first among equals.  It was apparent to David that Michael would never be able to regain his former position.  All the effort toward grooming Michael for his throne had been rendered null by a mere nobody.

     David literally gnashed his teeth as he pondered the best way to make me see the enormity of my crime.  He was of Biblical orientation so that the punishment had to ‘fit the crime.’  The events of Europe weighed heavily on his mind.  He had reflected on the words of the itinerant rabbi rolling them around in his mind:  ‘I have been an American all my life, but I have been a Jew for four thousand years.’  The statement was a flight of incredible fantasy, but David pondered it deeply, ignoring its absurdity.  He was in the process of placing his life in that mode, as improbable as the statement was.

     As was his way he began to ruminate on all the injustices done to the Jews over their four thousand year history.  He shuffled the deck of been forward and backward; laid the cards out face up and stared at them.  The implacable dripping of the juice of the poison red berries of yesteryear corroded his sensibilities.  Each injustice corroborated and amplified the real or imagined injustices done to him.  David was sensitized to insult, he could find a personal injury in a stranger driving past his house too fast.

page 40.

     Naturally the category of ‘humiliation’ was uppermost in his mind.  Slowly a figure emerged from the dense fog of resentment in his mind.  David nodded affirmatively as he recognized his appropriateness.  The figure was someone who had endured as bad a humiliation as possible.  If not the worst, there is nothing in history to exceed it.  The humiliation was certainly as bad as anyone had ever endured.

     In the France of 1894, Alfred Dreyfus, a Jew, an officer of the elite Statistical Department of the French Army had been convicted of spying.  The conflict between Jews and Europeans was reaching high intensity.  The fact that a Jew was involved enraged the French nation.

     On a rainy day, the ground of the compound turned into mud, Dreyfus had been arraigned before his fellow officers, surrounded by a hostile public.  There, as he stood at stiff attention his commanding officer stripped him of his insignia and trampled them in the mud.  Before the hooting jeering mob he broke the symbol of Dreyfus’ manhood over his knee.  The two halves of the sword lay in mud with his insignia at his feet.  The hatred against Dreyfus was so intense that a new prison was designated to contain him.  He was sent to Devil’s Island.  Just as the French thought the Jews were devils, so David Hirsh thought of me.

     The picture was so vivid in Hirsh’s mind that he relived it in the person of his son’s humiliation in kindergarten.  Involuntary sobs rose from his breast.  He now knew what to do.  In the closing weeks of the summer he assembled Michael and the Eloy to drill them in the procedure so that nothing would misfire.  The Hirsh name would be redeemed, or so he thought.

     I passed the summer in dread.  The Eloy prevented anyone from playing with me.  I knew that something terrible was waiting for me in the second grade.  I was isolated; I had no friends, no parents, no guardians, no help.

     What happened to me on that day was concealed from me for forty years.  The suppressed memories controlled my actions against my will from their subliminal hole in my brain.  I was only able to recover the memory and free my soul after a series of dreams finally revealed this major cause of my emotional distress.

     I don’t know exactly when it happened.  It may very well have been the first day of the second grade.  It was a warm late summer day.  We were all in shirt sleeves.  It happened, naturally, at recess.

     All morning long Michael had turned to look back at me with a malevolent stare.  The Eloy were seated in the front of the class, the Morlocks behind them.  I was in the very last row.  After Michael Hirsh glared back at me another of the Eloy would turn to glare.  One after the other they fixed baleful glances on me.  Then in teams they did the same.  Then all.  Then Michael Hirsh began again.  I sat glumly, fearful of the outcome. 

      The teacher announced recess.  I dropped my eyes to the desk pondering whether I should stay there or whether I had to go to recess.  When I looked up the Eloy stood glaring at me by the door; hands by their sides, waiting for me to precede them.  I got up.  I walked by each one on my way to the door.  As though he were telling me what to do Michael flicked his finger indicating to me to go outside.  It was a symbol of weakness, I should have resolved to oppose him.  They all filed out behind me.  I was apprehended.  The Eloy gathered around me in a semicircle.  Michael Hirsh was the keystone of the arch.

page 42.

     David Hirsh and Michael had analyzed the scene in the playground during kindergarten and arrived at conclusions which missed the point.  It was true that Michael had been vulnerable standing at point.  It had behooved him, a young Arthur, to step forward and chastise me; instead he had stepped back into the protection of his confederates.  The act was a confession of weakness.  To redeem the situation it now behooved him to reprove me in individual combat.   Having failed as Arthur; Michael was not the boy to succeed as Richard.  For whatever reason, David chose Michael to do otherwise.  The flaw in his character cost him the triumph he desired.

     Thus Michael stood with the Eloy flanking him and surrounding me.  In my mind he shrank to insignificance while the Eloy surrounding me paralyzed my mind.  They annihilated my existence with their projected hatred.  Beams of malice flashed from their eyes piercing my body and soul from all angles.  Their hatred reduced me to impotence.  I could not resist.  My attention was fixed on them while Michael intoned at me.  I didn’t hear his words, I was only aware of the finger he was shaking at me.  He probably was telling me what I would have to do to remove their hatred.  If so, I didn’t hear it.  The only thing I heard him say was that I was to take a step forward and stop when he told me to stop.  I raised my foot and was told to stop.  I was then told to stay in that position through recess.  I did and I died of shame.

page 43.

     Perhaps the Hirshes were lucky in tapping into the subliminal memory of my mother standing me against the wall.  The punishment was so extreme, so successful, if you will, that it failed to achieve its desired result.  The punishment so succeeded that it appeared to fail in the Hirshes’ and Eloys’ eyes.  I was not only humiliated as much as Dreyfus had been but my personality had been murdered.  I was no longer able to face myself.  My personality withered, atrophied, to a mere empty garment, a deflated balloon.  My body remained but Far Gresham was gone.  When Far Gresham died the memory of the event died with him.

     Whatever the Eloy hoped to achieve was never acknowledged by me.  Whatever instructions Michael Hirsh had given me were never performed.  I never begged for forgiveness nor rendered the proper obeisance.

     Michael had proceeded from weakness.  He had acknowledged his dependence on the Eloy.  Indeed, they achieved the results not Michael.  I had in actuality won the victory; but like the Greek General Pyrrhus I was annihilated in the process.  Michael had won but was unable to realize the fruits of his victory.  They were all dumbfounded.

page 44.

     Once again Michael was compelled to go to his father in tears.  David Hirsh listened in astonishment; his mouth hung open in wonder.  How could I have resisted?  He could not know the degree to which he had suceeded, for though dead, Far Gresham was real to the naked eye.  It took much more subtle perception than David Hirsh had to perceive the truth.  He was much too self-absorbed to develop that sublety.  But he was able to perceive the consequences on his son.  Michael had fallen from Prince-in-process to Primus Inter Pares; he now sank to Pal.  He could only rely on group solidarity not lead it.

     All of David’s hopes for his son were being dashed by the insignificant son of his two insignficant enemies.  Had David been a true student of the Bible he would have known to curb his pride.  He would have taken pleasure in accepting the will of the Lord.  Oh, but justice had another meaning for David Hirsh.  What he called justice wise men called pride.

     The defeat was a blow, a severe blow.  Coupled with his renascent Judaism born of despair it was a blow that David’s mind could not withstand.  Who knows which of his own inadequacies, which he apparently felt so keenly, he thought would be redeemed by his first born son.

     Unlike myself, who was compelled to endure the consequences by inflicting the punishment on myself, David Hirsh was in a position to gather his frustration together and lay them on someone else.  He honestly believed that he could purge, cleanse, his own spirit in such a dishonest way.  He thought he could expel darkness rather than letting the sun shine in.  David had heard it said:  Know thyself, but its wisdom went over his head.

     David was mystified by the apparent failure of his plan.  It had proceeded satisfactorily but had been excessive.  Now he sought to escalate the punishment, to raise the violence to a higher plateau.  I must acknowledge my humiliation, I must give homage.

5.

      I sat through the second grade in a fog of pain.  I could not understand my ostracization.  If I had been able to associate it with the kindergaren incident with the Negroes I would have thought I had been right.  Stripped of my identity by my humiliation, or murder, I now sat as a lifeless lump in class.  My whole existence revolved around my mental anguish.  Anguish was my identity.

     I daily endured the enmity and spiteful tricks of the Eloy.  The Morlocks who had merely watched my humiliation from a distance were of no help to me at all.  Of course, had they shown me friendship they would have incurred the enmity of the Eloy themselves.  Who can blame the Jellyfish because it has no spine?

     The Eloy were well rewarded by my abject appearance, nevertheless I gave no obeisance, no homage.  They remained unsatisfied.  Had I been old enough to bear the situation I would not even have satisfied them with a long face, but then my identity had been obliterated.

      The constant hazing of me coupled with my resistance brought the situation to the attention of the teacher.  Since it was twelve on one she assume I must be at fault.  She demanded that I explain.  I was barely alive, I couldn’t give a suitable explanation.  Then, in what should have been a clear admission of Michael’s guilt to the teacher, Michael motioned the teacher to lower her ear to him which she did.  Michael cupping his hand so that I souldn’t be able to hear and possibly refute him whispered a few words to her.  She straightened up, glared at me steadily and said:  ‘Now I understand.  You’ve got only yourself to blame.’

     She was wrong and she should have known she was wrong.  If at any time your accuser cannot announce his accusation in front of you then he is lying.  The teacher, who was after all, authority, should have been aware of the principle and demanded that Michael accuse  me openly.  How often these unfounded accusations evaporate when the light hits them.  Aware of the injustice of the teacher’s response I began to rebuild an interim identity based on the realization of injustice.  As I grew and observed, the structure begun with that single brick developed rapidly.  The basis of my view of society was laid.

    My emotional state was the same at Mrs. Johnson’s as it was at school.  I became morose and despondent, true sadness frequently overcame me.  I had no one to whom I could turn.  Once I sat in the darkened dining room crying softly to myself.  Mrs. Johnson, who was a kindhearted woman, asked me as solicitously as possible, what the matter was.  I had no way of articulating my situation to her.  I could only turn away in despair.

     At that moment I knew that Mrs. Johnson made the decision to send me away.  I could sense it.  Mrs. Johnson notified my mother that she no longer wished to keep me.

      Go To Clip 2 of Far Gresham

    

A Short Story

The Midnight Ride Of Dewey Trueman

by

R.E. Prindle

 

The best and the bravest are dead.  All that are left are the scum- the liars and cheats, the dancers wallowing in the fat of the land.

King Priam

 

     Every weekend Dewey Trueman hitchhiked from San Diego to the San Francisco Bay Area and back.  This is a distance of about twelve hundred miles.  You can see how desperate Trueman was to distance himself from his situation in the Navy if only for a few hours; for most of the weekend was spent on the road.

     On good days he arrived in Oakland at four or five on Saturday morning.  To be in San Diego by eight Monday mornig he had to be up on the Altamont by four in the afternoon on Sunday.

     Trueman’s immediate concern was simply to make time he was not paying attention to the sweep and scope of the landscape and events.  His mind was so tranfixed on the horrors of his situation that he couldn’t see the beauties around him or analyze the sequences of events passing before him faster than a frame in a movie clip.

     On this particular occasion Dewey was returning to San Diego from Oakland.  The year was 1959, some few months before he was discharged.  The Altamont Pass leads out of the Bay Area between San Leandro and Hayward, down to Tracy and then you take a jog down the San Joaquin River to Modesto where the route joins the old main throughway Highway 99.

     Highway 99 led straight between the Sierra Nevada to the East and the Coast Range to the West down the length of the San Joaquin Valley to Bakersfield and the Grapevine.  This is a distance of about three hundred miles.  If you look at a map you may say:  ‘Oh yeah, I can see that.’  Perhaps.  But you can’t visualize it.  You can’t understand California realities.  For instance, and these are or were at one time remarkable facts.  The highway was four lanes with a median strip.  The entire length of the median was planted with Oleander bushes to muffle the lights of oncoming traffic.  The Oleander is drought resistant which is good because there is little rainfall in the suffocatingly hot San Joaquin Valley.

     The Oleander is also poisonous to cattle but few of them grazed the meridian.  The view in the spring when the Oleanders were in magnificent bloom was spectacular; three hundred gorgeous miles.  Surely that fact should have made the Guiness book of world records.

     Ninety-nine was not at that time a freeway but a high speed limited access road.  This meant that there was a cross road every ten or fifteen miles or even less.  To facilitate local traffic there was what was called a frontage road on either side of the highway.  Thus there were two lanes, an open space, a fence, an open space, two lanes, the meridian and a duplication on the other side.  The chain link fences in themselves had to be among the longest fences in the world.

     With few breaks the road either passed thrugh towns or was lined with service stations, restaurants, roadside attractions or whatnot.  As this was post-Sputnik one guy had even built a huge replica of a rocket beside his station dispensing Rocket Gas.

     All of these establishments were on the other side of the fence on the frontage road so you had to drive past them, exit and drive back.  They were always busy so lots of people did.  They were usually staffed by sullen suspicious people unable to enjoy the California sunshine.  As dark as Dewey’s outlook was he never felt unusual.

     At the time there was no speed limit so that one flew past all these delights.  If there was a speed limit only the duds observed it.

     Life is full of delights and subsequent disappointments.  Dewey hadn’t been standing on the Altamont long before a green ’59 Plymouth pulled to a stop.  The driver, Gabe Rawlins was on his way to LA.

     ‘Alright.’  Thought Dewey.  ‘Luck is a lady tonight.  Almost non-stop.’

     Gabe was a real nice guy.  Like most normal people he was only almost normal, not quite there.  His eccentricity was that he was an advocate of steam powered cars.  He thought their return was just around the corner.  In fact, he was an expert, a noted authority as he said.  He communicated with other experts on steam power all over the world, especially Australia.

     ‘Well,’ said Dewey amiably, ‘All right, so why does your Plymouth have an internal combustion gasoline engine?’

     Gabe was coughing around an answer when he spotted another hitchhiker.  He was a Second Class Gunner’s Mate with two four year hashmarks on his sleeve.

     ‘Career man.’  Dewey thought.  ‘All those guys are pricks.’

     ‘No. Don’t pick him up.’  Dewey pleaded.  ‘All these career guys are arrogant.  What’s a second class doing hitchhiking anyway?’

     But nice guys are the cause of all their problems.  Gabe pulled over.  Dewey tried to get out to let Lee Nelson, the Gunner’s Mate into the middle, but Nelson was no fool he dept shoving Dewey back in.  Unable to win that way, Dewey said:  ‘I’ll get in back.’

     ‘No.’  Gabe said.  ‘Stay in front.’

     Dewey groaned to himself.  He knew that was trouble ahead he just didn’t know what.

     Nelson turned out to be as arrogant as Dewey expected.   Gabe continued to rattle on about steam power.  In fact, the man was absolutely ridiculous on the subject but whatever his faults Dewey was always respectful although since Gabe had picked up Nelson he also lost interest.  Nelson openly ridiculted and reviled old Gabe.

     Gabe was no slouch behind the wheel of an internal combustion engine.  After they wheeled through Modesto they were on the wide open highway.  Modesto was a strange town in that the speed limit was twenty-five but signs posted by the highway informed you that the stop lights were timed for thirty-five per.  So everybody drove ten miles over the speed limit with official sanction.  One wondered.

     Outside Modesto Gabe really barreled.  He kept the plunger in for ninety per.  That old Plymouth was barely making contact with the road.  Nine-nine was not a freeway, you really had to watch those crossroads because the meridian made it difficult for drivers to dart across.

     Modesto was the last town that you actually passed through all the way to the Grapevine.  Merced, Fresno and Bakersfield were all to the side of the highway so that with luck you could maintain speed as long as you had gas.  At these speeds you could watch the gas gauge go down.

     Dewey had a lot of experience on 99; he knew the road better than nine out of ten drivers.  They were coming up on a very dangerous spot somewhere between Merced and Fresno, almost Fresno.  There was an especially dangerous crossroad where the north bound lanes were about eight feet higher than the south bound lanes.  Dewey had already been in near accidents there.

     They had made good time, it was only just after nightfall.  About a mile away Dewey spotted an old double front ended Studebaker sitting on the meridian sloping down from the Northbound lanes.  Call it deja vu, call it paranoia, call it prescience.  Gabe was bubbling away countering the jibes of Nelson.

     ‘Watch this guy, watch this guy.  Change lanes, slow down, this guy’s dangerous.’

     Nelson was one of those loud mouthed know it all First Division jerks.  No wonder the Deck Force had a bad reputation.  Most of them were idiots who couldn’t survive on the outside.  He outshouted Dewey.

     The Studebaker just sat there, then about a hird of a mile away it seemed that the driver just took his foot off the brake and began to coast across the fast lane.  If Dewey had gotten Gabe to change lanes they would have missed him.  A quarter mile away Gabe slammed on the brakes but didn’t change lanes.  The Plymouth turned into a rocket sled but it slid straight down the highway.

     ‘Goddamn you Nelson.’  Dewey shouted as the distance closed.  By that Dewey meant that if it hadn’t been for Nelson he wouldn’t have been stuck in the middle nor would Dewey have been crazy enough to needle a very excitable driver.  Dewey laid off the whole blame on Nelson although Nelson was too stupid and self absorbed to understand his complicity.  Dewey saw certain death before him.  He went limp as rag doll and hoped for the best.  The Plymouth slammed into the Studebaker at fifty-five per midway between the bumper and the cab.

     The collision drove the Studebaker thirty feet down the highway where it sat midlane pointing South.  The Plymouth totaled.  Dewey bounced around the seat, first over Gabe then against the windshield which didn’t break, then over Nelson, finally sprawled over both.

     Incredibly no one was hurt.  The driver of the Studebaker was somewhat dazed pacing the middle of the highway.  He was ninety years old.

     ‘Look at the old fart.’  Gabe rued.  ‘He probably isn’t any more dazed than he was before.  You guys are going to stick around to give the police a statement for me, aren’t you?’

     Nelson already had his thumb out.

     ‘Give the police your own statement you dumb son-of-a-bitch.  All you had to do was change lanes to avoid the accident.  That’s all I’d tell the police.’

     Incredibly enough a car screeched to a stop between the wreckage and roadside.  Nelson leaped in and was gone.  Nice guys are the cause of their own trouble; Nelson wasn’t going to be late for muster.

     The police were very slow in arriving.

     ‘Hey, Gabe, I really gotta go or I’m going to miss muster.’  If Dewey had been thinking more flexibly he would have had himself taken to the hospital and had good cause to be late.

     ‘No. Wait.  You gotta give me a statement.’

     As he was pleading the police drove up.

     Dewey wrote out a statement which the police didn’t seem to care about then stuck his thumb out.  The uniform was worth something because you seldom had to wait long.  Even in the dark when the dark blue uniform was barely visible.  The driver dropped him off at the last Bakerfield exit before the Grapevine.

     The Grapvine was the stretch of highway that twisted over the desolate, barren mountains between the LA basin and the San Joaquin Valley.  The place was miserable for anyone hoping to catch a ride, more strangeness happened there than just about anywhere else.

     Now Dewey was apprehensive.  Not only was Bakersfield a tough hitchhiking town but if dropped on the Grapevine it would be very, very tough to get back on time.

     Dewey took up a station, becoming very concerned.  Adjacent to the road was the Gatehouse Tavern.  George Wimpleton was an old homo predator who patrolled this stretch of road with his porno dreams.  Looking out the window he spotted Trueman putting his thumb out.  Lisping from his stool he left his beer and ran to his car.  He wheeled around the corner stopping in front of Dewey.

     The car was an old forty something Dodge.  Classy in its time, no doubt, and classy enough if you like old cars.  At the time it was a typical fag wagon.

     ‘Hop in.’  Wimpleton commanded in a limp wristed way.

     ‘Bad situation.’  Dewey thought.  ‘But I’m just about out of options.’

     He hopped in.

     Wimpleton got straight to the point.

     ‘I like sex performed on me by men.  I’m not queer, you are.  Now, you’ve got a decision to make, buddy, and you’re going to make it fast.  Understand?’

     ‘Uh, what decision might that be?’  Dewey sneered always amazed at how the queer tried to deny their emasculation by acting powerful.

     ‘You’ve got two options, Jack.  I’m going to drive behind a knoll up here about five miles.  Now, you’re going to give me a blow job until I’m satisfied.’  Wimpleton sounded like his capacity was such that it might take months.  ‘If you do it right I’ll drive you straight back to the base.  You won’t be late.

     If you don’t…’  He paused for effect. ‘…I’ll take you back to my ranch, a prisoner sex slave for me and my friends.  When we finish with you we’ll kill y9u and no one will ever hear from you again.’

     Dewey looked over at George Wimpleton in amazement.  The road is a strange and dangerous place.  Dewey was man of some experience.  He had probably dealt with more than Wimpleton had.  Over the course of his hitchhiking he had been picked up by hundreds, perhaps thousands, sometimes it seemed like millions.  Some weekends perhaps as many as forty or fifty.  Many had made boastful threats.  There were hitchhikers who had disappeared.  Sailors even disappeared with some frequency.  Everyone just assumed they were AWOL although a body occasionally washed up on the beach.  But Dewey wasn’t worried, he had always come out without dishonor.

     As he looked over at the physical specimen of Wimpleton he was somewhat amazed at the violence of his speech and assurance with which he made it.  Wimpleton was typical of the legions of men who prowled the highways looking for male sex.  He appeared to be about fifty-five; he was round and pudgy, wore glasses and had a soft white collar quality to him.  He had given no indication of having a gun or a knife.

     Dewey was slender but a six footer, although not violent by nature he could handle himself in a run of the mill fight.  He was bemused by the blustering commands of Wimpleton.  But the couldn’t be sure that there might not be more queers behind this hill of which Wimpleton spoke.  A man with his pants at his knees is at the mercy of the man before him.  Dewey suppressed a chuckle.

     Dewey knew that no one is more susceptible lies than a liar.  No one is more gullible for exotic sex stories than a queer obsessed with the topic.  Dewey decided to get rid of the guy before they left the road.

     ‘Oh, now…’  He groaned with apparent deep grief.  ‘…I’m so sorry for you.’

     ‘Sorry for me?’  Wimpleton said, startled.  ‘How’s that?’

     ‘I know what you want and you’re the kind of powerful guy I’d really like to give it to, you’re so forceful you, but…’  Sob.  ‘I can’t.’

     ‘Why not?’  Wimpleton replied heartened and mystified at the same time.

     ‘Oh man, I’m really ashamed and embarrassed to admit this but I’ve never matured sexually.’

     ‘What do you mean?’

     ‘I’m not going to beat around the bush, I’m just going to blurt it out.  I can’t get a hard on.’

     ”You can’t get a hard on?’  Wimpleton ejaculated, spattering the windshield.

     ‘No, man.  I’ve tried and I’ve tried and I’ve tried.  I’ve done everything.  I’ve tried manipulating it myself, I’ve gone to little girls, big girls, women of all ages, even grannies.  The same with boys and men.  I’ve even tried animals abut no matter what I do I just can’t get it up.  I’ve just never matured.  I’m in the Guiness book of world records as the oldest unmatured man.’

     Wimpleton’s eyes were bugging out of his head.  His breathing was heavy, his hands were almost paralyzed on the wheel.

     ‘You’re a freak!’  He shouted.  ‘I almost contaminated myself.  I’m glad you were honest enough to tell me.  This isn’t going to work at all.  I’m leaving you off right here.’  He said slamming the brakes on.  ‘Get out of my car, you freak.’

     ‘Hey, I’m sorry man.’

     ‘Just get out of my car.’

     ‘Well, alright, if you feel that way.  So long, pal.’

     ‘Don’t you dare call me pal.’  Wimpleton copped a U across the Grapevine and sped back toward Bakersfield.  He would be telling the story years later.

     He had dropped Dewey off at the base of the little knoll.  Dewey walked back behind it to make sure no one was there.  There was no one but the evidence showed that it was a most used rendezvous.  There were numerous tire tracks.

     Dewey was now running late.  The worst had happened to him; he had been dropped off on the Grapevine at night.  The cars were few and far between and he was barely visible by the side of the road.  He resorted to the expedient of stepping out in the traffic lane for better visibility.

     Luck was with him; a traveling salesman heading into the Basis picked him up right away.  He was lonely and wanted to talk.  The radio was tuned to some country station where the DJ was on a Chet Atkins jag.  He was trying to prove to the world what the world already knew; that Chet Atkins was a great guitar player.

     Dewey had little to talk about  as all he knew was the Navy and the highway.  He gamely tried to amuse the guy with tales of the highway.  His observations were unpleasant to the driver.

     Dewey noted to him that although Blacks were a significant part of the population you almost never saw Blacks on the highway.  Nearly everyone was White.

     This led the driver into a diatribe about the race wars going on in Alabama at the time.  Dewey wasn’t interested in Alabama.  Further, isolated in the Navy he was only just aware of them.  Surprisingly everyone he knew was sympathetic to the Blacks.  He was even more mystified because the race wars aboard ship raged on unabated.  Sympathy in Alabama didn’t extent to the Teufelsdreck.  Obviously altruism was only for distant objects, like the star, Betelguese.  Such observations merely angered the driver, so Dewey tried to get off the subject.

     Unfortunately he began to talk about queers.  As he told about Wimpleton he then began to generalize about the physical type of men who patrolled the highways.  He noted that they were never tall muscular, athletic types or even small effeminate types but always like Wimpleton.  As he described the type he failed to note that the driver fitted it perfectly.  The driver picked up on more quickly.  He wasn’t getting the bright chat he thought he deserved.

     He was however a decent man.  He didn’t drop Dewey on the Grapevine but got him at least a ways up Lankershim.  Now all Dewey had to do was get across the sprawling metropolis or LA.  A lot of rides, fifty or more.

     He had a succession of short hops up Lankershim; picked up by an assortment of oddballs.  One was an amiable queer who was of the mold Dewey had just been describing.  He wanted to give oral sex.

     ‘I used to be in the Navy.’

     ‘Oh, yeah?’

     ‘Yes.  Had a great time in Japan.  Used to get great head from those Grishas.’  Apparently he meant Geishas.

     ‘Oh, yeah?’  Dewey said, getting the drift.

     ‘Yes.  I’ll bet that you choked a few of them.

     ‘Why would I want to choke anyone?’  Dewey asked, apprehensive that he had been picked up by a real weirdo.

     ‘I mean when you shoved it down their throats you were so big you choked them.’

     ‘Oh, no man.  I’ve never done that.  I don’t approve of it really.’

     ‘I see.  Well, you’re a very decent person.  I’ll just let you out right here.  You’re sure?’

     ‘Yeah, but thanks anyway.  You seem like a decent guy, too.’

     Dewey was immediatly picked up by a religious fanatic.

     ‘Have you been saved, man?’

     ‘Yeah, just now, man.  You just did it.  Especially if you’re going to San Diego.’

     ‘You sacriligious son-of-a-bitch.  Get out of my car.’

     Dewey finally made it to the foot of the Hollywood Freeway.  There he was picked up by a particularly persisten queer who just wouldn’t give up.  He was outside Dewey’s type characterization being six feet and athletic looking.

     He was a real wrangler, one of those guys who thinks that he never fails.  He caught the 101 interchange in that huge stack of five freeways clinging to that LA hillside so that Dewey was confident that he wouldn’t dump him in the middle of nowhere.   Just to keep the guy headed South Dewey wrangled with him.

     Barry Weston, was was his name, knew the roads very well.  He was out every Sunday night when the picking were richest as the sailors hurried back to San Diego.  He not only knew the map he knew the sociology of the roads.

     Weston was playing to the end.  When they reached Anaheim he turned to Dewey and said:  ‘Now, what’s it going to be?  Are you going to give and get a ride back to the base on time or is it going to be like this?’

     As they spoke they passed to the South side of Anaheim.  An absolutely astounding sight unfolded in the night.  The highway was lighted.  There beside the huge six lane haighway was an unending line of sailors stationed every hundred feet for mile after mile.  As Weston purred by them the pecularites of the line unfolded.  As a sailor was picked up or dropped off, the line automatically shifted left or right as the sailors adjusted the spacing to remain equidistant.  A huge ebbing and flowing effect was constantly going on.

     They had already passed thousands and thousands of sailors.  The line appeared to stretch on indefinitely.

     ‘Well, what’s it going t0 be?’  Weston sneered, playing his trump card.  ‘You going to give and get back on time or take your place in that line?’

     ‘Thanks for the lift.  Pull over and let me out, man.’

     Dewey stipped out in front of another sailor.

     The sailor pointed to a spot between he and the next in line indicating Dewey should be there.  Dewey looked up and down this amazing line then took up the station.  The line rippled left and right to accommodate him.  Somewhere in the line sailors left or were added.   The line ebbed back and Trueman did a funny little sidestep to adjuxt.  Everyone in the line did their little dance over and over as time dragged on.

     Trueman lost all anxiety as he pondered his situation.  It seemed hopeless.  There didn’t seem to be enough cars on the road to accommodate this portion of the fleet let alone drivers to pick them up.  There wasn’t even any reason to put your thumb out.

     Probably if you did get picked up,’ He thought. ‘It would just be another queer trying to cut a deal or else.’

     He watched the cars pass with drooping spirits.  Suddenly a car traveling the fast lane at a terrific clip caught everyone’s attention.  It was a red and whote ’55 Chevy.  While everyone watched he driver whipped, almost in a right turn, across all three lanes of traffic to screech to a stop in front of Dewey.

     Dewey was astonished beyond belief.  ‘Why me?’  He thought.  ‘What signals was I transmitting, what criteria were these guys using to pick me out?’ 

     ‘Get in the middle.’

     The back seat was jammed with clothes and household goods.  A Louisville Slugger lay conspicuously in the foot space atop some junk with the brand name up.  Dewey looked across at the driver.  Both guys were lean and wiry, probably not wueer, but out on some type of joy ride.  Dewey tried to opt out.

     ‘Hey, thanks for stopping you guys but I think I’ll pass.  Wait for something else.  Thanks anyway.’

     ‘Aw, hey man, yu definitely don’t want to hurt our feelings.’

     Dewey followed his gaze down to the baseball bat.  he looked out across the plowed fields.  He wasn’t a fast runner anyway.  The guy could bring him down with the baseball bat as he ran.  ‘Well.’  Dewey thought.  ‘Maybe I can talk fast.’

     ‘Hurt your feelings?  Aw, no man.  I didn’t realize it was like that.  But, hey, since I’ll be getting out first why don’t I sit on the outside.  Save you some trouble later.’

     ‘No.  It’s our car.  Get in the middle.’

     Dewey slid in.  The door slammed shut, the driver accelerated into the fast lane.  The driver, Jack, who did not introduce himself, got right to the point.

     ‘We need your opinion on something man.  I got a real difficult situation here.’

     ‘Oh gosh, my opinion wouldn’t be worth much.’  Dewey said.  ‘Gee, I’m only twenty, I don’t have much experience at all.’

     ‘You got enough for us, man.  Here’s the problem.’

     All the time the driver spoke the car was going eighty miles an hour.  The line of sailors ebbed and flowed and danced in an enormously long line.  the phenomenon was surely one of the most spectacular sights the world had to offer.  By daylight all these sailors would be gone, nearly all of them would make it back in time for muster.  This phenomenon happened every single Sunday night for those who had eyes to see and the intellect to understand.

     ‘Ya see, it’s like this.  I used to be married to this woman.  Beautiful woman, high school sweetheart.  We were very happy but I wasn’t making much money.  Then this guy comes along, a coal miner.’

     ‘Coal miner?  In LA?’

     ‘Yeah, so this guy is making a lot of money, coal miners get paid real good.’

      ‘They do?’

     ‘Sure, they gotta work underground which is real dangerous work.  You wouldn’t do it for the minimum wage, would you?’

     ‘I wouldn’t do it for a lot of money.’

     ‘Well, shut up and listen.  So my wife falls for this guy’s bucks, divorces me and goes with him.

      This was only a couple years ago.  So I become very distraught.  I don’t know what to do, so I join the Army.  While I am in the Army now I meet his very wonderful girl who loves me only for myself.  I married her last month.’

     ‘Where’s an Army base in La?’

     ‘There is one.’  I’m stationed there, OK?  Now shut up and listen.  So right after I marry my present wife there is a terrible cave in at the mine and my wife’s new husband is killed.’

     ‘Boy, I never heard about that.  Whre are these coal mines in LA?’

     ‘Listen, they have steel mills in LA, don’t they?’

     ‘Maybe.  OK.’

     ‘Well, you need a coal mine to make steel, don’t you?  So where there’s steel mills there’s coal mines.  OK?’

     ‘Boy.’  Thought Dewey.  ‘There’s a stretch of logic.’  But it wasn’t his car and he was in the middle.

     ‘So the mine caves in on this guy’s head and he’s got accidental life insurance for twenty-five thousand dollars.  So now my wife is got twenty-five thousand dollars and no husband to spend it with.  So now after I’m married to my current wife my ex-wife wants me to come back to her and the twenty-five grand.  What would you do?’

     So this was the trick.  Dewey thought that if he answered one way they would beat him to death with the Louisville Slugger; if he answered the other they might let him go.  He wasn’t sure what kind of guys they were.

     ‘Gosh.’  Dewey attempted to equivocate.  ‘I don’t know how to call it.  That’s a tough one.’

     ‘Call it anyway.  I gotta know.’

     Dewey looked right at Al who was looking at him expectantly, then back at Jack who was angrily demanding an answer.

      Dewey desperately wanted to make the right decision but he was having a hard time reading Jack.

     ‘Funny I didn’t hear about that mine cave in.’ He countered.  ‘You think it would have been on the news.’

     ‘You were out to sea.  Forget the cave in.  It happened.  Give me your decision.’

     Unable to decide Dewey decided to go with his own morality come what may.

     ‘Umm.  I’d stay with your current wife who loves you for what you are, whatever that may be, and is true to you even in the Army, which is really something.’

     ‘Really?  Yeah, but my ex is a real looker.  Lots better than my current wife.’

     ‘Well, looks are only skin deep.  Fidelity is worth more.’

     ‘Sure, but what about the twenty-five thousand dollars?  That’s a lot of money.’

     Dewey could nearly count the number of twenty dollar bills he’d seen in his life, if you laid them all out in a row they wouldn’t reach to the end of a table.  He had no concept of money but even by the late fifties it was common to speak of millions so twenty-five thousand didn’t sound like much.  Dewey could see himself spending it in no time.

     ‘Well, she’s left you once for money and twenty-five thousand won’t last very long.  Once it’s gone she’ll probbly leave you again.  This is Hollywood, there’s lots of guys with lots of money, lot more than twenty-five thousand.  If she’s that good looking she’s liable to get some taste and probably get one of those.’

     The unconscious insult slid over Jack.

     ‘Say, you know I think you’re right.  I’ll stay with my current wife.’  So saying he whipped over to the side of the road, shoved Dewey out and sped off.

     ‘Wow, that was a close one.’  Dewey thought.  ‘I thought I was going to die for sure.  Coal mines in LA!’

     So there he was at the end of the line just before San Juan Capistrano.  A couple of disconsolate sailors were standing about hw were soon picked up leaving Dewey standing alone.

     He was now very anxious because it was getting late.  Usually he was either back by now or getting close.

    
A car pulled over.  Can you drive ?’  The driver asked.

     ‘Sure.’  Dewey said who had only been behind the wheel once in his life.

     ‘Do you have a license?’

     ‘Are you kidding?  I’ve been ar0und cars all my life.’

     ‘OK.  But I’m really tired and want to sleep.  If you can drive you can ride.’

      Dewey ran over to the driver’s side and hopped in.  As he got behind the wheel he realized he was somewhat hazy about shifting.  Fortunately the car was an automatic.

     ‘Do you usually drive your car in D1 or D2?’  Dewey asked what he hoped would be taken as a polite question and not betray his ignorance.

     ‘I put it is Drive of course.  Say, do you really have a license?’

     Dewey slipped it into D1 and lurched off.

     ‘You can go to sleep now.’  Dewey announced.

     ‘I’m going to watch you a little, make sure you know how to drive first.’  But he drifted off to sleep immediately.

     The night was dark.  Dewey was driving very tentatively at barely fifty miles an hour.  He was not only tired but emotionally exhausted by a most adventurous trip.  He andered over onto the shoulder for a moment.  The owner awoke immediately.

     ‘Jesus Christ.  What’s happening?’

     Nothing.  I just ran over a narrow part of the road.’

     ‘Narrow part of the road!  Say, you don’t have a license do you?’

     ‘I know how to drive.  They just didn’t make this part of the road very wide, that’s all.’

     ‘Answer my question directly.  Do you have a driver’s license?’

     ‘Not today.  I’m going to get one tomorrow.’

     ‘Just what I thought.  Stop the car.  Get out.’

     Dewey couldn’t perwuade the owner to either let him drive or ride so he reluctantly got out.  Four-thirty in themorning and there he was by the side of a deserted road.  The sun was up before he caught another ride.  At seven-thirty he was dropped off at the end of the bus line in San Diego.  He hopped a bus.  At ten after eight he was racing through the Navy yard for the Teufeldreck’s pier.

     He arrived just in time to see the ship backing out for maneuvers.  Too late, he’d missed the boat.

     ‘Damn.’  He said out loud.  ‘AWOL.  Now I’ll have to stand a Captain’s Mast.’

The End

A Short Story

Highway 101

by

R.E. Prindle

     After the death of his son Michael, David Hirsh lost control of his mind.  In a fit of anguish he abandoned his wife, daughter and aged father Solomon.  He fled to the West Coast where he settled in the Los Angeles suburb of Montecito.  There, quite mad and unbalanced he joined the Hasidic synagogue with Frankist leanings.

     The echoes of Frankism that believed that the Messiah would come only when all the evil had been expended from humanity still reverberated.  David Hirsh changed his name to Yehuda Yisraeli, sinking into a life of depravity.  He entered the pornography business.  At that time the business was primarily still photos.  While Yisraeli did some work with women he specialized primarily in men and young boys.

     From the border below San Diego to LA is a mass of military camps.  The great naval bases at San Diego alone housed tens of thousands of sailors.  The Marines owned the area of Pendleton.  Lesser bases were in Long Beach and LA.  All these men, far from home, open to whatever adventure might come their way, were a happy hunting ground for Yisraeli.

     It was while he was cruising downtown San Diego looking for prospects that he spied Dewey Trueman standing on a corner.  Dewey had been an object of hatred for Yisraeli and his son in Michigan.  When his son died Yisraeli had tried to kill Trueman who was then known as Farley Gresham.  Trueman had graduated from high school then fled the Valley going North.  He, in turn, was driven mad by Yisraeli’s persecution in the Valley.

     He had been fortunate to be taken in by Angeline Gower, a waitress in Grand Traverse.  There after a year and a half he recovered sufficiently to strike out on his own.  His recovery was incomplete.  Unable to bear the reality of existence he disappeared in the woods of the Upper Peninsula to resurface in Milwaukee.  Undirected and still unable to function he reluctantly joined the Navy.  The Navy shipped him West to San Diego.

     When Yisraeli spotted Trueman his heart churned with joy.  As Dewey had never actually known him there was no chance that he would be recognized; yet as he knew Dewey, he leapt back against the wall of the El Cortez Hotel.  His act was so outre that Dewey noticed him.  Yisraeli was petrified, sure that Trueman would leap on him.  Not recognizing him, Dewey dismissed him as just another queer, the plague of the sailor.

     Yisraeli had rapidly built up a roster of men who posed for him.  Through these he was able to locate Trueman’s ship, appropriately named the Teufelsdreck.  Then he had been able to play tricks on Trueman anonymously.  But tricks are only tricks, he wanted to avenge the death of his son on Trueman.  He saw no reason for Trueman to live when his own beloved son was dead.

     His attempt to have Trueman incarcerated in an insane asylum had failed.  He now concocted a plan to lure Trueman to his death.  Trueman had been hitchhiking up to San Franciso every weekend for some time.  The customary route lay up 101 to LA and then up I5, at that time Highway 99, to Modesto and across to the Bay Area.

     As these roads were heavily traveled they afforded no certain way to obtain possession of Trueman.  But, Yisraeli reasoned, if he could get Trueman to take 101 all the way, that less traveled road would give him the opportunity he needed.

     Homosexuals not being stupid go where the boys are.  The boys are in the Navy.  The Navy has a high percentage of homosexuals.  At one time the aircraft carrier the Kearsarge was so heavily infested that it was known as the Queersarge.  Open warfare existed between the straights and queers, instigated by the queers, don’t misunderstand me.  Mess halls and passageways became battlegrounds.  The Navy in desperation brought the Kearsarge into Alameda took off the old crew and placed an entire new one aboard.

     While the Teufelsdreck was fairly heavily infested the queers still remained less open than on the Queersarge.  The Teufelsdreck was a closet ship.  Yisraeli, who had become a source of income for many men had contacts aboard.  They put the bug of 101 in Trueman’s ear.  It was a hard sell.  One o one did not have a good hitchhiking reputation.  At that time above Santa Barbara the highway was nearly vacant.  Still there was a streak of curiosity in Trueman.  He wouldn’t mind seeing the length of the fabled 101.

     Prodded once again he decided to give it a try.  Yisraeli’s system was alerted.  Among Trueman’s friends aboard ship was a Sonarman by the name of Joe McLean.  Joe or Mac as he was alternatively known was devoid of morals.  Back in Texas he had been given the opportunity by a judge to choose either the Navy or prison.  Between a rock and a hard place McLean chose the Navy.

     The lack of morals is not always clear and obvious in the military.  Always on the make Joe had been recruited for a photo session with Yisraeli.  He would be Trueman’s cicerone.  The hit was plotted between San Luis and Paso Robles in the wild Coast Range.

     Trueman wasn’t clear why he took Mac along.  Hitching is tough enough alone let alone two at a time.  Perhaps it was the newness of the route.  The two took the bus to the end of the line in San Diego then got out on the highway.  It was imperative to get a ride immediately at the end of the line  before the cops or Shore Patrol got to you.  The Navy frowned on hitching, it was imperative to get out of town fast.

     On this, the first leg of that strange trip luck was with them.  They were dropped off at the end of the freeway in LA in one ride.  In those days, 1958, the northern extensions of the freeways were not yet built, so that a hitcher was usually dropped off at the end of the freeway.  If on 99 this meant a difficult hitch up Lankershim Boulevard through North Hollywood to the Grapevine.  On a Friday night this meant beating your way through thousands of territorially minded cruising teenagers.  One of the great spectacles of the era.

     If 101 then you had to beat your way up Sepulveda Blvd. out to Ventura and Oxnard.  This route was even less attractive than North Hollywood.  At that time the Age of Concrete had not yet taken full possession of the soul of LA.  The city was filled with marvelous plaster cast buildings in imitation of every famous building in the world.  The whole city looked like a huge movie set.

     LA was a very exciting place of light airy corruption.  Nothing and nobody was for real, everyone was there to be used and discarded.  Sunset Strip was still one of the most dynamic party streets in America, probably the best, although the seeds of its demise could be found on the odd lot where Beatniks held forth; not real Beatniks but LA movie style poseurs.  LA could never be quite as gritty as SF.  Still, the evil was apparent amid the glitter.

     Dewey and Mac beat their way up Sepulveda, between the canyons, not yet filled with garbage, out toward Oxnard.  The canyons on either side of what would become the freeway were literally filled with garbage and then covered with earth.

     Midnight found them standing on the LA side of Oxnard.  There appeared to be little hope then a car pulled over.  If it weren’t for queers in LA a sailor would never get a ride.  Both Dewey and Mac piled into the back seat.  Dewey, always tired, wanted to get some sleep.  The driver protested, demanding that at least one ride up front.  Joe, who was never tired, readily volunteered.  Dewey lay down and went to sleep.  He was awarkened shortly after by the lack of motion of the car.  Only half conscious it became clear to his muddled mind that they were parked and that Joe and the driver were engaged in sex.

     ‘What if he wakes up?’  The driver said.

     ‘It’ll be too damn bad for him.’  Joe replied.

     Dewey chose not to emerge from his sleepy haze going back to sleep.  He was awakened by the bright California sunshine as the car sped down the highway.

     ‘Where are we?’  He asked sleepily.

     ‘Just left Santa Barbara.’  Mac replied.

     ‘Santa Barbara!’  Dewey shouted.  ‘Hell, we should be in San Francisco by now, if we drove all night.  What’d you guys do, stop somewhere?’

     ‘No man, we’ve been driving all night.’

     ‘Must have been ten miles a goddamn hour.  We’re not even up to San Luis Obispo.’

     ‘San Luis is just up ahead.  I’ll buy you guys breakfast then drop you off.  I’m not going any further.’

     Dewey usually drove straight to his goal, nothing diverted him, so he was really angry that they weren’t any further.  Was he being disengenuous about the stopover or did he truly imagine that he had no idea why they hadn’t gotten further?  Even with Trueman’s phenomenal capacity to shuffle unpleasant situations into the dungeon of his subconscious I am really hardpressed to explain his dissimulation.  Perhaps he was making the best of a bad situation; perhaps it was the better alternative to admitting that his friend was not the type of person he wished to associate with.  Friends are always hard to come by, even moreso in the Navy.

     San Luis was an incredibly beautiful little city at the time.  Even amongst the sere hills of summertime California the city sparkled.  The restaurant the driver chose was so spotless it glittered, this was America the way Americans like to think of it.  But for Dewey the dark remembrances of the previous night cast a pall over his mind.  The intuition that his friend was queerish disturbed him.  Accepting breakfast from a queer was impossible.

     Dewey refused the driver’s offer of breakfast grousing mightily while the other two ate.  His black mood and the heavy dark burden of his past contrasted sharply with the bright cheerful character of his surroundings.  He wanted away.  On the one hand the beauty was such that he could not participate in it as much as he admired it.  On the other hand the thought of the corruption seated across from him amdist the spotless splendor, blithefully ignoring it, crossed his mind as such a severe contradiction that he couldn’t handle it.  He groused even more violently until the driver gave him an uncomprehending look and left his breakfast half eaten.

     Dewey savaged him even further as he paid and left.  The other patrons looked at this dark visage hoping that he would leave.  Dewey wouldn’t let Mac eat either, driving at him until he got back out on the highway.

     Joe was now angry.

     ‘I think we should go back.  By the time we get to Frisco we’ll have to turn around and come back anyway.’

     ‘Hell, no.  I don’t know why it took us over six hours to get from Oxnard to this side of Santa Barbara but whatever you guys were doing cost us a lot of miles.  You go back.  I’m going on.’

     ‘We weren’t doing anything Dewey.  The road was torn up so we had delays.’  Joe pleaded making it up as he went along.  The technique had always worked except for that one time with the judge.

     ‘Yeah, right.’

     About that time a ride came along.  They both piled in.  The heat had not built up yet so that the day was gloriously beautiful.  It was so beautiful that it even penetrated the impenetrable gloom of Dewey’s mind, casting aside the scales ever so much.  The air sparkled.  As the rolled along the Coast Range narrowed the valley so that it came  up alongside the road.  As they entered the mountains the driver dumped them out completely in the middle of nowhere.

     One o one was no ninety-nine.  Still a two lane highway the cars were few and far between.  Dewey continued to grouse at Mac who retreated into himself to avoid Dewey’s reproaches.  Then a driver stopped.  The strangeness of the stop alerted Dewey’s suspicions.  Once you’ve hitchhiked enough, like anything else you become sensitive to the unusual.  Normally a car overdrives the hitchhiker by at least a hundred yards making him run for his ride.  It’s a form of fare, really.  This guy  rolled up slowly and stopped in front of them as though he had been looking for them.

     Even more peculiarly the driver insisted they get in the back seat.

     ‘It’s my turn to sleep now.  Get up front with the driver.’  Joe whispered.  Dewey acquiesced.

     ‘I’ll ride up front and talk to you.’  Dewey volunteered.

     ‘No. No.  Both of you get in back.’  The Cowboy said.

     The driver’s always right but the act placed him in so much jeopardy that it caused Dewey to wonder.

     ‘When it gets stranger than I am, it’s time to get out.’  He thought to himself.

     The driver, a cowboy, was a real nice guy but he seemed to be inviting disaster, encouraging it.  Then up the road along which the cowboy was ambling, he was a real slow driver, he spotted two more guys hitchhiking.  Further they were city boys, looking cocky beyond endurance, definitely out of place.

     ‘This is wrong.’  Dewey thought.  ‘Everything is out of place.  Something’s going down here.’

     ‘I’m going to stop and give these two guys a ride, too.’  The cowboy announced.

     ‘No!’ Dewey almost shouted.  ‘Let them go.’

     ‘Why?’  The driver asked complacently.  ‘I gave you guys a ride.’

     Premonitions are impossible to explain.  Dewey wasn’t able to do it.

     The Cowboy stopped.  ‘Hop in, boys.’

     They didn’t even ask how far he was going.

     ‘Wrong, wrong, wrong.’  Dewey thought.

     When they fixed their eyes on him Dewey knew that it was all wrong but he had no idea what.

     They were arrogant Wild Boys dressed in a manner that implied they had never been out of LA.  They were too good looking, sporting a confidence that was not born of the moment.  Dewey thought that they should have cars of their own.  There was no reason for them to be by the side of the road.

     Dewey looked around and picked up on the car that stayed carefully half a mile behind.  The car was driven by Yehuda Yisraeli.  It was up to the Wild Boys to get the Cowboy’s car off the road behind the hills where Dewey could be killed.  Mac who had not been let in on the full story was scheduled to die also.

     The scene could have been the basis of an episode of the TV series Bus Stop or, with shotguns, a Peckinpah movie.

      ‘There comes a time in everybody’s life to die.’  Wild Boy Bill said laconically.

     ‘Yeah.’  Said Wild Boy Jim when no one responded.

     ‘Sometimes you die naturally, sometimes you have a little help.’

     No response.

     ‘You ever killed anyone?’  Wild Boy Bill asked Dewey.

     ‘Are you kidding?’

     ‘We could kill this stupid driver here.  Make him take a side road into the hills.  Out here no one would ever know.’

     ‘So?  What’d he ever do to you?’

     ‘He was stupid enough to pick up wild guys like us.  No one should ever offer help two guys like us who don’t need it.  You think he’d know better.  That merits death.  Besides I like to kill.  It’s a real kick.  Let’s do it.  Turn up that road, Cowboy, let’s kill you.’

     All of a sudden the idea appealed to Joe.  ‘Yeah, OK, let’s do it.’

     ‘No!’ Dewey shouted.  ‘Don’t turn down that road or let me out.’

     The driver sort of coasted past the road indecisively.

     The gig was up.

     ‘Let us out here.’ The Wild Boys said.

     ‘Who the hell gets out in the middle of nowhere.’  Dewey thought, not realizing that he, not the Cowboy, was intended as the victim.

     Then as he looked back the Wild Boys got in the car which had been following.  Yisraeli did a uey and headed back to LA.

     Dewey sat there puzzled unable to figure it out.

     The plan had simply been to get Dewey off the road behind the hills and kill him.  They had hoped to disarm him by getting him excited at the prospect of killing the Cowboy.  In Yisraeli’s mind torn by hate and prejudice he projected his state of mind on Dewey and thought Dewey would jump at the chance of killing someone, anyone.

     The Cowboy was involved.  Behind a couple payments on the car, Yisraeli’s offer had been to bail him out.  When Trueman was aroused to commit murder they were all to turn on him.  Yisraeli was to drive up, set up a movie camera and make a porn snuff film out of it.

     It was a good plan.  No one would ever find Trueman and McLean’s bodies.  When they failed to show up for muster it would be assumed that they were AWOL.  Thirty days later someone would show up on their parents doorstep to see if they were in their homes.  Then the search would be over.  Of course Yisraeli hadn’t thought about the consquences of selling his snuff film.  Sent out to every corner of the earth Trueman or McLean might be recognized, but, even so perhaps nothing would ever come of it.

     But Dewey refused the bait and plan came to nothing.  Virtue is indeed often its own reward.

     The Cowboy went about five miles further before letting them out as he turned into the sunbaked barren hills.

     ‘That guy doesn’t know how lucky he was that I was here.’  Dewey thought, completely unaware that he had saved his own life.

     Dewey tried to get his amazement across to Joe but Mac merely said matter of factly,  ‘We should have done it.  It would have been a lot of fun.’

     Dewey was so shocked he just shut up until a driver dropped them off in Paso Robles a  couple hours later.  If you like desert Paso Robles was a pretty little town.  By this time the temperature was 105.  The Navy Blues were getting a little toasty.  Even in the heat the town didn’t look bad, just hostile.  Like all those little towns the people distrusted strangers passing through.  Frequently the townspeople could become dangerous.

     The oaks, after which the Pass of Oaks took its name were strewn over the hills across the highway.  Paso Robles Union High sat among them.

     Dewey’s mind was reeling from the discovery of Joe’s homosexual proclivities and his ready acquiescence to the murder of the Cowboy.  Dewey began to rag on Joe pushing him to explain himself.  Joe couldn’t and didn’t want to: if Dewey couldn’t undertand, he thought, then Dewey sould shut up and let it pass.  Dewey felt hurt and betrayed by his misjudgment of Joe’s character;  he continued to demand explanations.

     Joe as if to keep Dewey away from him was standing around him ike a basketball player with his hand stretched out to Dewey’s hip to direct his activity.

     ‘You boys passing through, I hope.’  Said the Highway Patrolman amiably as he leaned across the seat of his air conditioned squad car.

     ‘Not only a free country.’  Dewey snarled.  ‘But see these clothes, Navy uniforms.  We’re out of your jurisdiction.  Give us trouble and you’ll be talking to the Admiral.’

     ‘Now, don’t get smart with me boys.  I just asked a civil question.’

     ‘Well, we might go over and have a coke at that drive-in.’  Dewey said.  ‘Hot.’

     ‘No.  Don’t even do that.  The only thing keeping me from running you boys in is those uniforms.  You see we’ve been having a little trouble on this stretch of highway.  People have been disappearing.  Those guys over at that drive in are a little edgy.  They’d like nothing better than to get you guys into a fight and stomp your ass.  I’m trying to do you a favor if you’ll let me to keep you out of trouble.  Just keep passing through.  Any problem?’

     ‘Who’d want to stay in a place as hot as this?’  Dewey said sarcastically.

     ‘I’ll take that for a yes.’  The Patrolman smiled driving away.

     ‘Man, you didn’t have to be so rude, Dewey.’  Joe, who had been remanded to the Navy from the court, admonished.

     ‘Really?   You were ready to kill a guy for kicks and you have the nerve to criticize me for being rude to a cop who’s running us out of town?  Strange world isn’t it?’

     A rock skidded past their feet.  Looking toward the drive in Joe and Dewey saw a group of four young men shaking their fists at them.

     ‘Move along or tne next rocks will brain you.’  The leader shouted.

    ‘Maybe 101 wasn’t such a good idea.’  Dewey said as he and Joe moved another couple hundred yards down the road.

     It was hot.  The cars were few and far between.  Whenever a car hove into view Dewey uttered a little prayer.  They were all going unanswered.  Then from a distance of a couple hundred yards Dewey saw a car coming along with two obese men, the passenger with his arm around the driver and sitting close to him.  Dewey looked closely; the two men seemed familiar.  As they drew abreast the passenger gave a little start and pointed to Dewey.  The driver sniffed acknowledging what he said.  As the car passed both threw their noses in the air.  It would be a while before Dewey could remember who they were.

     In December of ’58 when he had hitchhiked back to Michigan he had been picked up by these two men in Amarillo, Texas and dropped off in Tulsa.  The men who had introduced themselves as Darrel and Derold patrolled the highway from Amarillo to Tulsa picking up and killing hitchhikers.  Something misfired with Dewey so after giving him his ride they decided to abandon Oklahoma for San Francisco.

     Now, some four months later they had chosen 101 to continue their predations.  While Dewey didn’t place the pair something clicked in his mind that associated their appearance with the murders the Highway Patrolman had mentioned.  Speaking almost to himself in reference to Oklahoma Dewey ejaculated:  ‘Look at those two old fairies.’

     Joe not understanding Dewey’s reference point took umbrage at his contemptuous exclamation.

     ‘I’m embarrassed for you Dewey.  I think affection between any two living creatures is the most wonderful thing in the world.  You should apologize to them here and now, even if they can’t hear you.’

     Dewey looked at Mac with some wonderment.  The term ‘two living creatures’ didn’t escape him as he correctly divined that Joe would take a sheep if he could but he could only deal with one of the conflicting thoughts he had at one time.  A contempt for Joe boiled up in his mind that quickly subsided but Dewey said mockingly:  ‘Aw, Joe, aren’t you the guy who always says what you don’t know won’t hurt you?’

     ‘I don’t know what you mean.’

     ‘Sure, you do.  Those guys don’t know what I said so their feelings can’t be hurt.  Why should I apologize to someone I haven’t offended?’

     ‘This is different, Dewey.’

     ‘No, it isn’t, Joe.  It’s all the same.’

     As their eyes met the reality of this trip down 101 shown clearly in their eyes.  For a brief moment the truth of their feelings for each other was apparent but the light flickered out and the deceit of their situation on Joe’s part and the hope of Dewey’s once again became the reality.

   Neither spoke to each othere for the duration of the hitch that was long and slow.  Arriving in Oakland as the morning sun came up there was litle to do but turn around to make the loop down 99 back to San Diego.

     Dewey and Mac split up each going his separate way.

 The End

     ‘

 

 

 

 

 

 

    

A Fictional Dialogue

Battleground America:

Breakfast At Champions

by

R.E. Prindle

Clip 2.

 

Dewey

You haven’t heard it because our thought is controlled.  Only the correct opinion is allowed to be published.  In the first place the notion of being politically correct comes from the Stalinist era of the Show Trials of the thirties.  No deviant opinion was allowed; all opinion had to be politically correct according to Stalin’s guidelines.

Therefore before anyone dared express an opinion they first had to check with their Commissar for the correct slant.  Earl Browder, the head of the American Communist Party served that purpose in the US.  Reds had to ask ‘What does Earl Say?’ before they dared to express their opinion and then it was always the same as Browder’s.  Therefore, as you say you are PC you have to check all your opinions against a central authority.  Hence you are not free to think as you like; hence you are a slave to another’s authority.  I can’t do that; I’ve got to be free.  Freedom of conscience is everything to me.  But then, different strokes for different folks as they used to say.  You need the security of knowing you’re right.

Craig

(makes growling noises as the truth of the statement sinks in)  That…that’s not…entirely…true.

Dewey

Sure it is, Craig.  Or else it isn’t possible for you to be sure of being politically correct.  But, let’s get back to the Irish Catholic, John F. Kennedy.

Craig

Racial motives can’t possible enter into the Kennedys.  Besides Dewey it has been scientifically proven that race doesn’t exist.  Do you know that ninety-nine point six percent of the genes of every living human being are the same.  What do you have to say about that?

Dewey: 

Well, for starters, ninety-nine point six is not the same as one hundred percent.  What you have just told me is that four tenths of one percent of our genes determines race.

That’s an inane argument since we all come from the same source along with rocks and trees and birds and bees.  The genetic makeup of everything comes from the same source.

Craig

We’re gentically one with rocks?  Puff away, Dewey.

Dewey

Craig, we took geology together.  The Earth has a molten core. Everything that is on the crust which is dried molten core is identical with the core.  Life as we know it arose from the ‘living’ water that exuded from that core and continues to exude  to the present day.

The water is so strong in life giving propensities that even though photo-synthesis isn’t possible at present depths chemical life forms are created.

If you believe in evolution then according to its proponents all life proceeded from a single celled organism.  All genes have arisen from this organism.  That they have differentiated along the way is self-evident.  Even so the majority of genes must be shared by all organisms, even rocks.

Therefore you can prove that species don’t exist either because all life is genetically identical.  Therefore the elephant is not a different species of being.  It’s just a human with a different configuration.

If you are going to to be politically correct then you should insist that your Commissars think these things out before they speak.

In addition your objection to race is that if race exists then other races are inferior to your own.  This is the universal premise behind the genocide which is being practiced by every race in existence.  I don’t think one race is inferior or superior I just accept that they are different and have developed separate racial approaches to managing reality.  I’m sure that even the politically correct will admit that there are different approaches to reality and they are not equal or else how could you be politically correct?

The question then is are all approaches equally productive?  That’s the question not physical identity.

So, the Celts have their characteristic way of looking at reality that is different from the Anglo-Saxon.

For instance, the Irish speaking of Ireland refer to it as the Old Sod while they refer to the United States as the New Island.  Language and words are very important indicators of feeling.  New Island can only be an extension of the Old Sod thus both localities are Ireland in the Irish mind.

The Irish have always used the New Island to carry on the war on the Old Sod against the Anglo-Saxon Protestants.

Actions speak louder than words.   Joe Kennedy not only supplied arms to the IRA but as I said he openly sided with the Nazis while Ireland itself remained neutral in the conflict which in the circumstances was a very bold move.

Jack was in office for three years but one of the first things he did on an official trip to Europe was to snub America’s premier ally- England.

Craig

I don’t remember that.

Dewey

Sure you do.  He went to the European capitals first, which in itself was considered a snub of England, then on the way back he spent a few hours in London but three whole days in Ireland.

I mean no  unkindness to the Irish but Ireland was, is and always will be an inconsequential backwater of civilization.  There can have been no political reason for that visit except to show the Irish they  had come into their own.  The Old Sod and New Island were one.  The Once and Future King had returned.

Indeed, in those three short years Camelot was reinstituted on American soil with John F. Kennedy as the reincarnation of the Celtic monarch Arthur.  Jackie was no Guinever but then if she had been replaced by Marilyn what a double cheeseburger that would have been, hey?

Craig

Marilyn Monroe?  There wasn’t any question of Jack Kennedy divorcing Jackie to marry Marilyn Monroe.

Dewey

Don’t lose your sense of humor, Craig.  It’s one of those historical what ifs.  Besides you aren’t considering Marilyn’s motives.  I think she thought it was possible.  But that’s neither here nor there.  I’m sorry I brought it up.

Anyway, I think it’s pretty clear that old Eire-land is in the saddle having captured America from the Anglo-Saxons.

Words and symbols, Craig, they’re dead giveaways.  Think of what Jack Kennedy did in those incredibly action packed three years.  A lot of fantasticks thing that Jack Kennedy was going to wind down the Viet Nam war.  I don’t know what they’re smoking.  South Viet Nam had been fairly well Catholicized under the French.  The Church had a pretty good toe hold which it would lose if the Communists gained control.

The campaign against Communism in the United States was directed in large measure from the Vatican.  Had the Communists gained control of Europe all three major churches- Russian and Greek Orthodox and Roman Catholic would have been eliminated not to mention their parent Judaism.  The Roman Catholic Church was fighting Communism for its very existence.

All of the really important anti-Communists were Irish Catholics- Father Coughlin, Parnell Thomas, McCarthy, all of them.

Craig

Richard Nixon wasn’t Irish.

Dewey

It depends on who you call important but OK, I exaggerate for effect.  Anyway Nixon wasn’t destroyed by the Reds, at least until the seventies, so they couldn’t have taken him very seriously.  Martin Dies wasn’t Irish either but he was destroyed.

The Kennedys themselves were ardent anti-Communists and Catholics.  Bobby served on McCarthy’s committee and Joe Kennedy had Joe McCarthy up for dinner.

So you want to tell me that Jack was going to be soft on Communism in Viet Nam?  I don’t believe it.  Another first thing he did was create an elite Army Corps called the Green Berets.  Remember them?

Symbols, Craig.  Don’t you ever ask yourself why green?  Green is the color of the Emerald Isle me bhoy.  Celtism forever.  Remember in ‘Kim’, Kipling’s book, ‘Kim’, his father tells him to look for a red bull on a field of green and they will make his fortune for him.

The Red Bull of Cooley on a field of green was the flag of his dad’s old Irish regiment.  Kim was Irish if you remember.  Jack just took off the Red Bull of Cooley; but, if you look closely you’ll probably find a little bull in there.

So scratch cooling off Viet Nam.

By the way, the Army changed the color from green to black after Jack died.  I recently saw where the entire Army was assigned black berets and the Special Army Corps objected so they assigned tan berets to them.  Know what the nickname of the British troops occupying Ireland was?  The Black and Tans.  Coincidence?  Probably, but isn’t it amazing how those coincidences add up?

Now, by sixty-three it was clear that the neo-king of Camelot was as shoo-in for the sixty-four election.  He’d had such perfect press coverage he would have taken at least sixty percent of the vote even if Jackie had divorced him and she did threaten to do that if he  didn’t stop seeing Marilyn.

After Jack Bobby would have been a shoo-in for eight more years of the Kennedys with Teddy in the wings there were eight more.  Who knows who would have been next but that was a twenty-five year dynasty of Irish Catholics in Camelot.

After twenty-five years of Celtish rule who can tell what the country would be like except that the Anglo-Saxons had lost their inheritance.  They’d not only lost it but their good will had been betrayed.  They had offered a helping hand to the starving Irish during the potato famine and now rather than combining with their benefactors the Irish robbed them.

Don’t get me wrong, Craig, I don’t dislike the Irish as people.  They’re great company, but their racial motivations have to be discussed under a separate heading.  The Irish are essentially ingrates.  They not only came here during the famine but they also flooded England where they disrupted the wage scale by providing cheaper labor impoverishing English laborers for decades.  The English gave them employment in the English Army.  If a helping hand hadn’t been extended the Irish would have starved in their millions.

What gratitude did they show?  They burned down the queen’s chief residence.  They robbed the Anglo-Saxons of their own country.  These are just facts; there’s nothing you can do about them.

Now, Craig, let me ask you, why do you thing John F. Kennedy was shot?

Because he left us no choice.

Craig

Wait a minute, wait a minute.  In the first place I believe that Oswald was the lone assassin who killed Kennedy for his own reasons but now Sam Giancana and the Mafia are claiming responsibility.

Dewey

Oh right, Craig.  C’mon, the question is who is manipulating who.  We may never know, but then that’s the purpose of conspiring.  The chief conspirators are so hidden nobody can find them if they’re any good.  The lone assassin thing didn’t hold up; everybody, except you obviously, easily saw through that.  In their hurry they botched up the Warren Report.

So, nearly forty years later it gets out that Giancana thought he was being double-crossed by the Kennedys because they were reneging on what he thought he was due for helping get them elected.  And it was substantial help.  Get that, the Mafia got him elected. So Giancana orders a hit on Kennedy in Dallas by a nut.  Did you ever ask yourself what was in it for Oswald.  Nothing.

Bill Bonano of the New York Mafia even claims that Johnny Roselli was the real trigger man who fired the actual shot that did Kennedy in while he was standing on a rung down in a sewer when the car drove by.  How’s that for military precision?

All I can say is that if the Mafia was involved then Lee Harvey Oswald may have been the patsy but the Mafia was the Fall Guy of Plan B.  If history is any guide when Plan B fails they’ll fall back on Plan C, the Scapegoat.  By that time it will be ancient history, everyone concerned will be dead and no one will really care.

The assassination was cleverly handled but the real reason Kennedy bought it was because the Irish Catholics had captured the US government from the Anglo-Saxons and weren’t about to return it.  I repeat, he left us no choice.

Craig

OK, OK. I’m not saying I’m going for this racial crap about Celts and Anglo-Saxons but where does his being Catholic enter in?

Dewey

Viet Nam for one.  Ok.  So I got a wedge in on the racial theory.  I’m really trying to demonstrate to you how Madison Grant’s studies apply before I get to the big swindle with the Chinese, known of old as The Yellow Peril.

The Catholic influence.  Well, Craig, you have to ask yourself what it means to be Catholic. It must mean something or why call yourself one.  It’s all in the education.  It’s like being Jewish.  If there is no Jewish agenda or program then it is meaningless to say you’re Jewish.  Jews have this special education; I had mine as a Protestant Methodist which colors every opinion I have whether I will or no.  The Catholics have theirs.

A Catholic must think of Catholicism as the true religion.  So on the face of it the Church is and must be intolerant of every other religion and secular belief system.  You may object, but I saw William F. Buckley of the National Review representing the Catholic viewpoint on a panel discussion and he said out loud that his religion as the true church forbade his admitting the validity of any other viewpoint.

You know of the Catholic Index of Proscribed Books.  It therefore follows that freedom of conscience is not a tenet of the Catholic Church.  You are either religiously correct or a heretic.  Sounds a lot like your politically correct credo doesn’t it?

Now, if you are brought up to believe that your church and hence yourself is the only possessor of the truth and all other beliefs are lies it follows that you will probably think you are in possession of the truth and your opponents are devils who are willfully trying to thwart you.

That is essentially what Kennedy thought.  You probably don’t remember General Walker, Edwin Walker, but I was scandalized by his treatment.

I don’t know what General Walker’s beliefs were but he was scathing in his evaluation of Kennedy.  Kennedy’s response was religiously or politically correct in the negative sense.  He didn’t try to refute General Walker or tolerate his difference he declared the man insane for disagreeing with him.  Jack Kennedy had General Walker, a man with a distinguished military record in the Army of the United States, committed to an insane asylum.

An insane asylum!

Shades of Soviet Russia.  I immediately recognized Kennedy for the irresponsible bigot that he was.  I disliked Kennedy from the beginning but I despised and hated him from that day forward.

I’m really surprised that nobody remembers what I’m going to say next but I was terrified by the plan.  Kennedy’s idea was to discharge all the mental patients in America.  As I remember it they were to have subsidized housing in every neighborhood in America.  Then the mentally ill were to report to the block house on every street.  Some person was to be designated as block big brother.

If anyone was denounced as crazy as in the case of General Walker they were to be placed on the list of the mentally ill being required to check in with the block big brother for indoctrination regularly.  In that very Catholic manner there would never be a chance of the Presidency ever passing into Anglo-Saxon hands again.  Any who dared to challenge the orthodoxy of the Celt ascendancy would immediately be declared mentally ill and neutralized.  Or in religious terms they would be heretics, infidels, anti-Semites or politically incorrect.

Well, you know, along with every other Anglo-Saxon Republican I was opposed to the Once And Furture King Of Camelot.  I’m sure all but die-hards like me would have converted to Democrats the day the plan was passed.  I lived in actual fear that Kennedy’s plan would be realized.

So you see, when I heard he was shot my question was is he dead?  When I heard that news I danced and sang.

Kennedy’s approach to political opposition was precisely the result of his Church education about orthodoxy.  I felt that General Walker was avenged when Kennedy was killed.  I don’t have to tell you that General Walker lived in Dallas.

Craig

You think that General Walker killed Kennedy then?

Dewey

No.  I don’t have any idea who the actual conspirators were other than a general sense of direction but, remember, Kennedy was told not to go to Dallas.  Jackie publicly begged him not to go.  It was common knowledge that an attempt would be made on his life if he did.  I knew that it would happen and I was an absolute nobody who read only the papers, Time and Newsweek.

Craig

I don’t remember that at all.

Dewey

I seem to be the only one who does.  So, anyway, his Irish Catholicism was negating everything that Anglo-Saxon Protestantism stood for.  And then the Negro revolt was heating up pretty strong.  I can’t imagine that his handling of the Negro problem had anything to do with it but it is possible that he was thought to be making untimely or unnecessary concessions to them.

Craig

Well, it would go without saying that the conservatives were opposed to Negro rights.

Dewey.

Yes.  I suppose.  But remember the most important decisions in Civil Rights were made under the conservative Eisenhower.  Brown versus the Board Of Education in fifty-four and Central High in Little Rock in fifty-seven were real milestones.  All of the initial events had already taken place when Kennedy was elected.  It is true that J. Edgar Hoover was a real enemy of Mike King but would he go so far?

Craig

Who is Mike King?

Dewey

Martin Luther King before he changed his name.

Craig

King changed his name?

Dewey

Sure.  He was born Michael King.  Changed his name but didn’t drop the Junior so his father was Mike King and there wasn’t any Senior.  Although after he and Bobby were shot down in sixty-eight the whole atmosphere changed.  There was a kind of relaxation, a certain tenseness went out of the air although the Black rebellion continued unabated.  It was more like with Nixon in the White House things were back under  control.

Then, somewhere in there the Blacks began their separatist program.

Craig

You mean to say you think that Africa-Americans are trying to separate into their own country within the United States?

Dewey

I think so.  They ethnically cleanse every neighborhood they move into; they will almost certainly demand the status of an autonomous people.  Everything depends on how you look at it but they have already staked out certain economic areas as well while territorially they seem to be packing an area in Illinois and Indiana.  They are active in cleansing certain areas in Mississippi for instance.  They will almost certainly take over Chicago as a starter.

Craig

Take over Chicago! How are they going to do that?

Dewey

Are you kidding?  You Liberals get incensed because Hitler used the democratic process to establish an authoritarian government and you don’t know how the process works.  Or is it that you don’t think it can happen here, or if it does, it will be just.  The end purpose of both Hitler and Kennedy was alike.  If Kennedy had gotten his mentally ill program thorugh he would have executed the same type of  coup as Hitler did.

It’s easier than you think.  You just don’t have any respect for the rules, that’s all.  You make a new game or, as you Liberals now say, a new paradigm.  Every city in America is governed by a board of elected councilors.  They call it the City Council.  I don’t know how many Chicago has but all the Blacks need is half of it to control the city.  They may even be able to come up with more than half and then Chicago is theirs.  Gary, Indiana  and East St. Louis belong to them already.

The laws were all written in such a way and social realities are such that in housing Blacks are favored over Whites.

Craig

You know, Dewey, we must see things very differently because the way I see it the housing laws are written to provide equality not preference for anybody.

Dewey

Once again, Craig, it all depends on your perspective.

I don’t deny that was the intent but the intent of the Constitution of the United States was not to provide a way to establish a dictatorship and yet it does so for anyone so inclined.  Whether you’re willing to see things in the round or as a perspective of your intent in the problem you’re facing in understanding is what I’m saying.

There is no question that the laws as they were written intended to make housing open to all.  But, in practice, there are very few White people who have any desire to move into solid Black neighborhoods.  Nor would I advise it because Blacks are going to be much less tolerant of Whites than vice versa.

Watch your TV set very closely, Craig, you can see what I’m talking about happening before your eyes if you will only open them.  In certain real life situations filmed in integrated neighborhoods you will see colored kids, meaning Blacks, Mexicans and whatever crowding to the front while the White Kid or kids cringe back.  If you think in an integrated neighborhood a White minority is going to get fair treatment, Craig, you’re the one smoking those funny little cigarettes.

Hence, as in Chicago, an influx of Blacks will displace Whites from the city.  In the old days they called it the Flight to the Suburbs.  An influx of a few thousand Black families and Chicago is part of the Black Autonomous Republic.

On the economic front they have appropriated Basketball and Football as their profit centers.  If you watch TV, I mean look at it, Blacks have appropriated at least half of the acting jobs in shows and movies and at least half of the opportunities in commercials.  In all three areas they have displaced Whites from lucrative jobs which require nothing in the way of education.  Real lumpenproletariat functions but remunerative.

In Madison Grant’s terms they have flushed their racial competitors out of those areas.  This stuff is really interesting to observe if you can get rid of your prejudices and see things as they are.  You’re watching Grant’s Great Race commit suicide.

Craig

So you think there will be an African-American Autonomous Republic and an Irish Autonomous People.  What else?

Dewey

I didn’t say anything about an Autonomous Irish People but as the process develops anything is possible.  You know, the Pope has ordered changes in the parochial school system to bring instruction more in line with Catholic doctrine rather than American methods.  He is able to do that because the tremendous influx of Catholics into the country has either given the Church a majority or will soon.

So as the ‘Nativist bigots’ feared the country is being increasingly governed by Rome.

Craig

Catholic influx:  Well that’s a new one on me.  Where is this Catholic influx coming from?

Dewey

Aw, Craig, c’mon, man.  You’re a really smart guy.  What do you think all these Mexicans or Hispanics are?  Catholic to the man.  They just keep coming.

They’re really dangerous too.  Almost as much as the Yellow Peril.

Craig

How can some impoverished poor people seeking a better life in our prosperous country be a threat.  Don’t you think they just want to be like us?

Dewey

If I weren’t more aware of racial and psychological realities I might.  I just have a harder time adopting the Bwana attitude than you do.  The machine gun makes us all equal, Craig.  Those Columbian dope runners who fight pitched battles on American territory don’t strike me as poor inoffensive campesinos trying to milk their big rich Whtie Northern neighbors out of a few meals.

I see them for what they are:  aggressive all-male bravos fully as capable as any White man in equal combat, machine gun to machine gun.  That Bwana mentality you enjoy is real hard for me to grasp.  I don’t see oppressed African Americans, poor Hispanics or little yellow Chinamen.  I see a fully armed and dangerous group of peoples out to smash the White hegemony established in the Seven Years War.  And it is racial my old friend.  Our colored brothers are quite conscious of their racial identity.

Taking advantage of our legal system and goodwill the Mexicans are invading the Southwest to ‘reclaim’ what they think is their birthright.  You Liberals should try to deal with historical realities rather than this sappy Bwana superior attitude.

Number one, the Mexicans have never gotten over the shame of being conquered by fifty or sixty White guys in armor on horses.  This defeat is a livid scar on their psyches.

Secondly, the Spaniards after having conquered the Aztec Empire centered on the Valley Of Mexico then claimed in the name of Spain, not Mexico, the whole lower half of North America from the Oregon border in the West to Florida in the East.

When the Mexicans revolted against Spanish authority they claimed all the lands that nominally belonged to Spain.  The Mexicans had no real claim to Texas, California and the Southwest.  The citizens of those areas who revolted against their new overlords, the Mexicans, had every right to do so just as the Mexicans had the right to revolt against Spain or the United States to revolt against England.  If you want to talk prior rights Mexico then still belongs to Spain and the United States to England.  Don’t do things by halves.  Restore the former order or shut up.

If those new States then chose to align themselves with the United States instead of Mexico, and who wouldn’t, they had every right to do so.  The Mexicans have no claim to those areas but they believe they do.

The indigenous Indian tribes get rubbished every way.  What used to be Apacheria is totally disregarded.

So all these Mexicans flooding in are not looking for a higher standard of living by sucking off us big bad Norte Americanos as you say but they are merely occupying the land in the time honored method.  We are being invaded.  They will force the Whites out in the time honored racial manner described by Madison Grant.

I don’t think they will be successful, mainly because of the Chinese but like the Blacks they are going to be able to establish autonomous areas where Anglos won’t be welcome.  That means you and me.

Craig:

Are we going to get to the ‘Yellow Peril’ now?

Dewey

Not just yet.  First we have to deal with that very touchy subject, the yeast or leaven.

Craig

The yeast or leaven?  We’re going to talk about bread now?

Dewey

No.  We’re going to talk about the most important and sensitive element of the racial mix of the United States: The Jews.

Craig

The Jews?  Why yeast or leaven?

Dewey

Well, if you have studied Jewish history at all and bear in mind nearly no one else has, even among the Jews, except for a few odd balls like me and some half-crazed Rabbis, and I don’t know anyone else but me who has looked into the subject.

I’ve even talked to a few rabbis in town and except for following the party line and being defensive they don’t know much.

First off, Craig, let me say that historically all the modern trends that began in the French or Great Revolution as the Reds call it have now established easily followed patterns.  This is no longer the nineteenth century when all these incipient movements were gestating or even the first half of the twentieth century when enough of the web had been woven so that the complete picture could be formed by the mind.  All you need is the desire to see things as they are and not project your fantasy of how you would like them to be on reality.

So, apart from denials and obfuscations the Semitist game is clear.

Craig

You haven’t become an anti-Semite have you Dewey?

Dewey

There’s the issue Craig.  That’s an obfuscation, turning immediately to the ad hominem.  There is no clear definition of what constitutes an anti-Semite.  As a point of fact the ADL- Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith- a private organization maintains files on three milion, what they term, ‘known’ anti-Semites, in America.

As you can see the notion reeks of paranoia.  If they believe there are three million known anti-Semites how many ‘secret’ anti-Semites are there?  Are we only looking at the tip of the iceberg or is it possible that every American is a ‘secret’ anti-Semite?  Are we all out to get the Jews?  Hmm?  Think about it.

Did you ever see the movie ‘Men In Black?’  Well, it’s kind of a metaphor explaining the role of ADL in society.  Speilberg directed it.  It’s the Men In Black’s job to seek out and destroy those concealed anti-Semites that only they can recognize.  They don’t turn them into the authorities because the anti-Semites haven’t committed any crimes they are only waiting patiently for the opportunity.

Apart from the paranoia one might ask how these anti-Semites are known.  There are no objective criteria for determining the status.  The rest of society doesn’t really care.  In fact a known anti-Semite is whoever anyone in the ADL says is an anti-Semite.  Someone could turn you in and you’d never know.  Just all of a sudden friends would start turning their backs on you; you’d come under scrutiny at work and little difficulties would start cropping up on a regular basis.  God would have unblessed you because you weren’t blessing the Jews.

Craig

What kind of things?

Dewey

Well, in my case I was arrested on trumped up charges and had to defend myself to the tune of thirteen thousand dollars.  That was fun.

Craig

What did you do?  They couldn’t arrest you without good evidence.

Dewey

Let me add to your education Craig.  Sure they can.  They can do anything they want with impunity.  If they haven’t captured the DAs office then they have enough people in it to do what they want.

Craig

The Jews?

Dewey

In conjunction with the Liberal Coalition, you know, the Women’s Movement, NOW, the Homosexual Movement and those so-called holy groups.

Not only can they do what they want but furthermore they have complete immunity.  You have no recourse.  They are above the law.

Craig

Surely you jest, Dewey.

Dewey

Surely I don’t; this is no joke, I’ve learned the hard way.  That’s the only way otherwise you would never believe it.  I’d seen it on TV dozens of times and always sided with the law but now I know better.  I consider the law my enemy.

Craig

(softly) That’s really strong Dewey.

Dewey

Well, as they told me, we’ll just have to let the chips fall where they may.  The fact is that the DAs office can commit any crime with impunity.  They have absolute immunity.  Understand the power we have given to these people.  They can be irresponsible and get away with it.

I was arrested on no more than the uncorroborated sayso of a woman on no greater charge than I had offended her sensibilities.  That was the whole charge, no crime had been committed or claimed.

Craig

(emphatically. laughing.)  Aw, c’mon Dewey.  You’re stepping off the ledge.

Dewey

Life is obviously more complicated than you think.  You knew me in California, Craig, but you don’t know who I am in Oregon.  You may not believe it but I am more of a somebody than you see.  If you remember I came up here to get a Masters at the UofO in Eugene.  jFor various reasons that became an impossibility so as you know I opened a poster store, couldn’t sell enough posters so I turned to records.  I was born to sell records so my store prospered accordingly.  I was hip, long hair and all that so people really wanted to buy records from me.

In the social climate of the times everyone thought that record stores were just covers for dope operations to it therefore followed that I was a dope dealer.

Craig

You never used dope when I knew you.  When did you start?

Dewey

Ay, there’s the rub, Craig.  I didn’t start.  I didn’t have anything to do with drugs.  But the truth doesn’t matter in situations like these.  They thought I was quite literally the biggest dope dealer on the West Coast if not a mastermind for the world drug trade.  They thought that I had Swiss bank accounts bulging with illicitly gained money; they still do.

I was under twenty-four hour surveillance, my house was gone through on a regular basis as well as my car or van when I wasn’t in it.  They couldn’t find anything because there wasn’t anything to find.  There was absolutely no evidence that I even so much as smoked a joint but that merely showed them how clever I was.  I mean, you know, they ran a mail drop on me, my phone was tapped, they opened my merchandise shipments and inspected them before they delivered them to me.  Finally I decided to go down to UPS and pick them up myself.

One time UPS had a box sitting in the middle of the floor with all four sides laying flat and the records exposed.

Craig

You complained about that loudly, I suppose.

Dewey

It was against the rules for me to complain.  Sure I was loud but so what.  I was told that was the way it was and if I didn’t like it I could kiss their ass.

I found the proposed alternative unpalatable so I realized that the law meant nothing to them and they had no intention of observing any laws where I was concerned.  I am only thankful that they at least didn’t plant evidence when they were in my house or car.  But that’s the way Oregonians are.  They have no self-respect and no sense of decency.  The only way they look at the law is as a protection for themselves.

Craig

I can understand why you’re a little sore at them, Dewey, but you do seem a little extreme.

Dewey

Well, he was no favorite of mine but as Barry Goldwater said:  Extremism in the defense of liberty is no offence.  Besides look at what they did to Diane Downs.

Craig

Is that the woman who shot her kids?

Dewey

Whether she shot her kids is open to question but they’ve had her in jail for decades for a crime she almost certainly didn’t commit.

Craig

I’m not too familiar with the case, Dewey, but they must have had some evidence.

Dewey

No, they didn’t have any evidence, they just didn’t have any other explanation and they wanted to put her in prison.  There was more than reasonable doubt.  Her story made a lot of sense to me.

Craig

How did her story make sense to you when it didn’t make sense to the jury?

Dewey

You’re not familiar with the Eugene-Springfield area.   Those people are really hard on people from out of state, especially people from California.  They’re rabid and, man, I mean rabid.  Diane Downs was new to the area having come up from California.  Apparently she thought she could screw her way into acceptance because as I understand it she was hard at work.

Anyway, I am familiar with the place at which she stopped when her kids were shot.  It’s a little bridge over this small creek that might be called the Marcola, I forget.  Anyway the area is called Marcola.  It’s real small.  The road runs up through a narrow valley.  In the very late sixties this place was a haunt for revolutionaries.  They built concrete bunkers up in the hills where they stored guns and ammunition, radios and the like for the coming Revolution which they thought was imminent.

They even had mobile radio units ready for operation.  They knew about triangulation and all that so they were prepared to move from place to place to avoid detection.  They dressed very colorfully in French Resistance outfits.  I did you not.

In addition to that Marcola was a recreation area which was haunted by criminal types.  Marijuana was everywhere.  One time there were a group of campers by the creek when these idiots stood in the flood light asking What as they were shot down with deer rifles from a truck.  This Marcola was mean do-wrong daddy kind of place.

I knew this guy who lived in Marcola and Jeannie and I visited him and his girl friend one night.  Round about midnight he jumps up and says we have to leave immediately.  We were driving back toward the highway when we came to this bridge over the creek.  As we drove up this literal shaggy haired man came up from under the bridge obviously under the influence of something and stood in the middle of the road waving his arms for us to stop.

Believe me I wasn’t going to stop.  There was room to drive around him so I did.  You know, these guys are all crazy so he’s shouting obscenities at us as I drive slowly on looking back.  I see this other big round guy come up from under the bridge waving a hand gun.  I stopped looking back and stepped on it and left them in the dust.

Now, here’s the kicker.  I don’t know the exact distance to the highway from the bridge but it’s not more than a mile.  If you’re not familiar with Springfield it’s really hard to know which way to turn in the dark so, just like Diane Downs, in my excitement I turned left into the mountains.  You can’t tell which way you’re going until the McKenzie Bridge.  The McKenzie river runs down from the mountains through Springfield.  Once there you know you’re going the wrong way so you turn around and go back.  That’s exactly what Diane Downs said she did.  She had an injured child in the back seat who had been shot by a madman so I think she had plenty of reason to become confused.

The Eugene-Springfield DA had to know the reputation of the Marcola area but in their eagerness to convict a Californian they put her away for life just to please their prejudices.

Craig

Well, wasn’t she kind of ditso, didn’t she turn the trial into a media event?

Dewey

Being ditso is not a punishable offence, as yet, and it was not in her power to turn any judges courtroom into a media event.  Only the DA could have engineered or prevented it.  Since it was allowed to go on I can only assume that the DA thought it discredited his victim and so he used it to help convict her.

The only evidence against here was the ad hominem one of being a ditso.  I suppose if the jury didn’t have a shadow of doubt in their minds there was no shadow of doube in their minds but I think the State of Oregon owes at least a commutation of sentence to Downs if not a full pardon for all the difference that would make in her ruined life.

Nowadays because of cable TV we have a handy method to study the characters of lawyers, judges, police and DAs.  Cable networks are at a loss for programming so they fall back on a lot of true crime.  We get to see a lot of real life court procedures as well as the police and DAs in action and in interview.

Just as the FBI can provide profiles on the type of person who may have committed a crime we can prepare profiles on types of lawyers, judges, cops and DAs.

Always remember that these self-righteous guys were once a next door neighbor who you may not have thought well of.  None of these people come from an hereditary occupational class, they are all self-selected for their jobs.

The DAs all seem to be attracted to the job ecause they think the the job will confer virtuousness on them.  I dare say you and I can’t think of anyone we went to high school with that we thought was that virtuous.

Since they think the job confers virtuous conduct on them they become extremely self-righteous.

As virtue is conferred on them anything they do is necessarily done for a virtuous reason.  Hence they all ‘fight crime with crime.’  Lie to liars, whether the other guy is a liar or not.  They become criminals in the name of the law.  They also fear failure so that if a crime is committed they must have the instant gratification of seeing someone, anyone, in jail.

All DAs are lawyers.  Now, being a lawyer does not mean you are intelligent, goodwilled, honest or anything else, it merely means you have memorized a ton of casework and law and were admitted to the bar.  I hae dealt with numerous lawyers and judges and have been impressed neither with their intelligence or understanding and much less with their integrity.

In the first place Diane Downs didn’t have to be indicted.  There was no threat to society.  She had an unusual story that couldn’t be checked out but was plausible given the circumstances I outlined. Heck, they even checked her hands for powder burns and found none which she would have had to had if she had recently fired a handgun. 

Besides the Da must have had complaints about those guys under the bridge  if they operated that way for years which they evidently did.  He knew that Fall Creek was a high crime area.

It was not necessary to indict her at that time.  The case could have been put on a back burner.

So why did the DA think it was so necessary to make a media circus out of the trial.  I certainly don’t know but the DA is the one who stood to benefit the most.

Very likely he had a crime and an unusual story so in his self-righteousness he adopted an attitude and then presented innumerable ad hominem arguments against her since he didn’t have the necessary evidence to convict.

The DA did exactly the same thing against me.  Even though he had no evidene to connect me with drug salses or even use he was convinced that since I ran a record store I must be doing dope.

So that’s the substratum of the reason why Barry Schunch had me arrested.

The proximate background of the reason to arrest me was, I think, this.

After the Stonewall riot in nineteen sixty-nine the homosexual community became very aggressive in practicing their ways.  Being the record business I had a huge increase in the number of sexually explicit covers.  Since homosexuality is sado-masochistic in nature and since the object of their distaste is women a large number of those sexually explicit covers involved the sado-masochistic treatment of women.  If you remember there were some real shockers as the envelope of pornography was burst asunder by the homosexuals.

Now, the Lesbian part of the homosexual community took offence at these covers.  They, of course, being mentally and emotionally disturbed blamed the emphasis on sado-masochistic sex portrayal on the heterosexual male rather than the homosexual male out of perverted solidarity.

Rather than attack the producers of the porn they decided to attack me who only stocked the records as the man who could stop the covers if I wanted.  All I could do was shake my head in wonder.  I was too young and inexperienced to deal adequately with psychotic behavior of this type.,  Besides who took the situation that seriously?  My detractors looked at me shaking their heads and saying:  This too shall pass so those covers would pass too and they did.  But that’s neither here nor there.

I wouldn’t voluntarily take hit records off the shelf.  The first act of the Lebians was to boycott my store.  One beautiful Saturday morning I am driving to work when a homosexual radio DJ announces that there will be a demonstration at my store beginning at twelve o’ clock.  Perhaps the intent was to get me to capitulate, get rid of the records and get them to call the demonstration off.  If so, the notion didn’t occur to me.

I was pretty prominent at the time running thousands of dollars of radio and TV commercials a month so I guess they thought they would get pretty good media coverage.  They didn’t know that I was being given the silent treatment by the media.  It was forbidden to mention my name in the Daily Assassin while all pictures of my street used on TV were closely cropped to eliminate the showing of my store.  So no reporters and TV cameras showed up.

So then they decided to creat a riot.  They invaded my store screaming and shouting, standing up on the racks waving red flags and the whole works.  I was pretty slow.  I should have had my head someplace where there was better light.  Actually the customers all thought this idiotic demonstration was just a publicity stunt of mine.  If I had kept my cool and stood back laughing uproariously everyone woud have thought it was just a good joke.

Of course, the demonstrators would have torn my store apart but that’s another consideration.  I called the cops.  Remember when I quoted Dylan:  The cops don’t need you and man, they expect the same?  That’s how it was.  The cops were not very enthusiastic about quelling these lesbian creeps but when nothing seemed to be soming of it they wound down and left.  Damn them all to hell.

But, the covers were still there.  Next they came into the store and slashed about a hundred covers with knives.  Well, I’d gotten used to treatment of this sort over the years both in Eugene and Portland so I didn’t think too much of it in the press of events.  I merely sent the records back as defects.

That wasn’t the response the Lesbians wanted so they published a story in their newsletter taking credit for the deed.  The next thing I hear is some cop on the phone saying they had read this story and while they didn’t care how ‘we people’ treated each other they thought this was going too far.  They offered to press charges against the Lesbians.

In fact, I’d completely forgotten about the slashed covers and if the cops wanted to extend a helping rather than a hurting hand I was immediately suspicious so I told him that the think had never happened.

Thus I thwarted, quite unintentionally, the Lesbian intent of creating a scene.

There last attempt to creat a scene was when they got a television crew of Lesbians affiliated with the same radio station which had announced the riot to attempt to how the ‘artistic value’ of record covers.  I told them they could photograph whatever they liked.  They thought they had me in their trap.  They immediately went to this particular record cover and asked me to come over and explain its artistic merits.  I refused to appear in their ‘video essay’ so they packed up and left.

I thought that was the end of it until I was arrested, Christ, you know, twenty years later.

So that’s the background of why DA Schunch would arrest me without adequate cause.

The whole legal operation was conducted without my knowledge because the DA didn’t give me a chance to defend myself at a hearing against patently absurd charges.

The Office fabricated an arrest record for me.  I was never even spoken to but there is apparently a file that shows that I was arrested, brought in and released on my own cognizance.  Next it was there duty to give me a hearing to determine probable cause of arrest.  They scheduled the hearing within ten days of the time they say they arrested me but somehow forget to notify me so it looked like I refused to appear for the hearing.

The charge I had been arrested on was some incredibly lame City Ordinance that said that if, this is how the mighty legal brain of Portland works, a person thought that someone had it in mind to commit an act against either their person or their belongings they could have them arrested.  So this complainant who I’ll give the improbable name of Virginia Woolf, said only that she thought that I intended to, I’m embarrassed for she, she said that in the middle of the Esplanade I got down on my knees and tried to thrust my hand between her legs so I could have finger intercourse with her.  She did admit that I never established contact with her person and there were no witnesses.  DA Schunch decided to prosecute this psychotic woman’s complaint.

At the hearing since I wasn’t there to defend myself, nothing like shooting fish in a barrel, hey? they escalated the charge to menacing. Now menacing is a fairly serious offense.  You have to be waving a gun or holding a knife on someone or something really serious to menace someone.

Well, the judge issued a bench warrant and I went blissfully about my business unaware of what was hanging over my head.

Two days before Christmas I found out when at one o’ clock in the morning there was a prodigious noise on my front door and it wasn’t Santa Claus, it was the Sheriff.  He wanted me to take a ride downtown with him.

Craig

I know you wouldn’t lie to me, Dewey, but what you’re saying is so incredible.  I believe you but still I can’t believe it.

Dewey

Like I say, until it happens to you.  Jeannie and I watched many of these stories on TV and found them incredible and unbelievable too but these DAs are out of control.  They are irresponsible monsters.  Once they got it in their head that I was a major dope dealer way back in the sixties with millions in Swiss bank accouants they were determined that I wouldn’t get away with it.  Like I say they ran mail drops on both incoming and outgoing mail, tapped my phones and had me under twenty-four surveillance, ransacked my house and car regularly, found not one shred of evidence that could connect me to dope in any way but still they took the position that I must be guilty because they thought I was guilty.  Hurts ’em to be wrong.

How can they interfere with you?  Oh, lots of little ways.  The ADL works in complete secrecty.  Most people don’t even know there’s alist let alone whether they’re on it.

Craig

How do you know there’s a list?

Dewey

Like I said I study Jewish history and affairs.  This guy J.J. Goldberg has this  book titled: Jewish Power: Inside The American Jewish Establishment, sounds near autonomous doesn’t it?  He mentions the ADL files quite proudly for instance.  It all comes together.

This is how race, sect, religion or whatever they’ll admit to being operates.

Now, they view all societies as an inert mass of dough without zest or flavor until acting as a yeast or leaven the Jews enter their society to show them how to live.

Craig

That sounds kind of anti-Semitic, Dewey.

Dewey

Tell me.  Heresy, infidelity, anti-Semitic, I can’t help but be me because I am not of the faith.  Further as I accept a scientific explanation of reality rather than a supernatural one I can only condescend to those trapped in what is an earlier consciousness.  The truth is anti-Semitic and the truth is that inferior forms of consciousness must give way before superior ones.  They may go screaming and kicking into the night but into the night they must go.  Call it anti-Semitism, I don’t care.

Understand Craig, that I do not talk out of the back of my neck or off the top of my head, I am not shooting from the hip, I say nothing that cannot be demonstrted or is unsubstantiated.  If you haven’t studied the history you can’t know and we aren’t talking about secret histories or hard to find arcane volumes we’re talking histories published by every leading publisher in the country.  Brandeis University Press, you name it.

So anyway, this yeast entered the United States, in numbers, beginning in about eighteen-seventy and continuing unabated officially until nineteen-twenty.

Now this is what the Honky Cat was talking about when he was so loudly booed away from the lectern.  That Cat was one courageous guy even if he did cower behind the lectern.

When there was finally a reaction against unrestricted immigration after the Great War the Nativists who had observed attitudes and sabotage during the war wanted to eliminate Eastern and Southern Europeans entirely.

You have to study the War years to really understand what the various immigrant groups were doing.  The Intalians, for instance had remained loyal to Italy which they were to do until after World War Two when they finally accepted that they weren’t going back to Italy.

History is full of interesting little oddities.  Did you know that the Italians issued a call to Italians living in the United States to return to fight for Italy and a great many went.  Wait, that’s not the interesting part.  After the War Mussolini wanted to return injured veterans to the United States for medical treatment.  That’s just one of the way foreign nationals view the inexplicable US immigration policy.

The Irish had actually helped the cause of the Central Powers with sabotage in the United States on the princible that a friend of England was an enemy of theirs and an enemy of England was a friend of theirs.  The most famous incident being the explosion at the Black Tom pier in New Jersey.  Of course, in the interests of racial peace in the United States the investigation was never pursured and athe explosion is listed as an accident.  There are accounts in which the Irish take credit.

The Jews were an interesting case.  They professed to hate Russia and the Czar who they have turned into  one of the greatest demons of all time.  So long as Russia was an ally of the United States the Jews were pro-German.  After the overthrow of Russia by the Bolsheviks, which is to say, the Jews, they became pro-Ally and of course they were always one hundred percent Americans.

The  Austro-Hungarians in the United States were suspected of being saboteurs and there are incidents of sabotage by Austro-Hungarians.

And of course the indignities the German-Americans were subjected to during the War years were unparalleled until the Japanese and numbers of German and Italians were interned during World War Two.

In the wake of the War the Nativists wanted to eliminate Southern, Central and Eastern Europeans altogether.  The best they could obtain was a quota based on demographics existing in about eighteen-ninety.  As Italian immigration only began in earnest after that date that virtually eliminated legal Italian immigration.

Believe it or not the Jews were in the process of transferring the entire Eastern European population to the United States when the war intervened.  In order to relieve the strain on New York City and the other Eastern ports while concealing their numbers channels had been established in New Orleans and Galveston to receive the bulk of these Jewish immigrants.

They were packed and ready to go in Europe when the restrictive new immigration law was passed in nineteen-twenty.  The Jewish plans were thwarted.  In addition as the Jews were a stateless people so entry visas had to be issued under the quota of another State.  The Jews may be temporarily stymied but they are not so easily defeated.

They set about conditioning public opinion in America to reverse the immigration act.  They got around the laws pretty easily in the aftermath of  World War Two.  For some reason unknown to me the Americans accepted racial guilt for what the Nazis had done.  I never have, not for the Nazis, not for the Blacks, not for Hiroshima, not for nothin’.  I didn’t do it and I don’t know anyone who did.

But in nineteen forty-eight the Jewish State Of Israel was established.  There was only one flaw in that plan.  Asiatics were fully excluded from immigration and Israel was on the West coast of Asia.  That meant dual citizenship was limited from West to East.

The Jews were unable to change the law in nineteen-fifty when a revision was made but they were successful in nineteen-sixty-five when the new immigration law was written.  Now, what do you think the most significant historical event has been since the end of the Seven Years War?

Craig

I don’t think it was this immigration act if that’s what you’re leading up to.

Dewey

That’s not what I’m leading up to.  But it fits hand and glove.  The second most influential fact of the last three or four hundred years was the Cultural Revolution begun in China in nineteen sixty-six by our good friend, the lunatic, Chairman Mao Ze Dong.

The two facts were not coordinated in advance of course but the coincidence is a remarkable fact.  At the very time Mao was leading the charge of the worldwide Red offensive the door of America was thrown open rendering the country nearly defenseless.  This at the height of the Viet Nam War and the Negro Rebellion too.  Is it any wonder we were psychologically and intellectually overwhelmed?  That refer to me and you too, Craig.

That more or less brings us up to the Chinese situation but I haven’t finished with the Jews yet so I’ll have more to say about their influence.

Americans are extremely myopic not to mention that we are capable of seeing only what we want to see.  They see only the the Chinese want to come here.  Oddly enough, that flatters them.  They do not look for ulterior motives or, indeed, underlying causes.  In fact, Americans, which always means White Americans in my scheme of things, are stupid.

We have been warned about  the Yellow Peril for some time but we prefer to put a different construction on things and ignore realities.  The fear of the Mongol hordes has been on Europe for centuries.  Strangely, modern White academic scholars take the side of the Mongols against White Europe.  They actually ridicule the Europeans while cheering the Mongols and lamenting their retreat.  The self-hatred is one of the consequences of the unmitigated success of the British in the era of European world conquest.

The East was always a source of dnage for Europe.  Celts, Germans and Slavs and Mongols all came from the East but the racial difference, which is to say cultural difference was a real terror.

Attila the Hun who entered Europe in the fifth century has always been a byword of terror although in recent years his reputation is being refurbished as some kind of farseeing leader.  You see White self-loathing at work.

Then in the thirteenth century the hordes of Genghis Khan penetrated deep into Central Europe before they retired.  they weren’t actually defeated they just withdrew back into the steppes while retaining hegemony over the Slavs of Russia.

So a very real fear was implanted in the Europeans.

Craig

That was a long time ago, Dewey, that has no relevance now.

Dewey

That’s where you’re wrong, Craig.  Historical memories have relevance over immense spans of centuries.  Here’s on e you daren’t disagree with.  Twenty-five hundred years ago the Jews suffered some indignities at the hands of this cat named Haman.  Every year they commemorate the horrors of this guy.  What he did then influences thier attitude toward others today.

As to the Chinese I am led to believe that Kaiser Wilhelm was the first to originate the term, Yellow Peril.  W.R. Hearst picked it up from him to illustrate the dangers of Chinese immigrtion into California.  And of course Hitler imbibed the fear of the Yellow Peril into his very genes.  All three of the men are execrated today but Wilhelm, Hearst and Hitler were right.

     Oddly enough the abominable racial pride of the English is the proximate cause of the Chinese Diaspora.

We are all familiar with the Jewish Diaspora but there have been several others.  The European Diaspora is prominent but the Chinese Disaspora is virtually unrecognized in the United States.  It will never be taught in the public schools.

Somewhere about eighteen twenty or so the British began moving Chinese into Singapore and other areas because they were thought to be more industrious than the aborigines.  If the British had had the population surplus of China they might have brought English out but since they didn’t have a big enough population for their purposes they pressed the Indians and Chinese into service.

This of course distributed Indians and Chinese into places they would never have gone on their own.  Once jump started the Chinese, who had never left China before began their great Diaspora of which the California immigrants were only a small part.  It’s not like they loved America best, as our Liberals like to believe or that they wanted to tap into our bounty specifically but that California was only one of many locations all around the Pacific Rim.  The Chinese were not helpless little yellow men seeking the aid of Bwana White Man but they had an agenda of their own.

The Australians sensed the danger quickly passing laws to keep them out.  Thus they temporarily avoided becoming a province of China.  Doesn’t bother people like the Liberals because they have no actual racial identity or pride.  At least, they don’t think they do.

Dennis Kearny and a number of farseeing men who are now termed intolerable bigots sensed the obvious danger of losing California and the West Coast to China so they pushed the Chinese Exclusion Act through Congress in eighteen eighty-two.  So the problem was minimized until the Jews undid their work in nineteen sixty-five.

Craig

Wait a minute, Dewey, wait a minute.  You’re not saying that the Chinese are inferior because they’re of a different race are you?

Dewey

You don’t believe in the concept of race, Craig, besides as I already told you I don’t have that Bwana attitude that you and your Liberal friends have.  You don’t put it in those terms but in your hearts you feel superior to them or you probably put it like you’re more advanced than they are but they’ll catch up in time.  You Liberals have euphemisms for everything.

They’re to to catch up and run over you sooner than you think , too.

So, in nineteen sixty-six the Chinese were no longer a backward trampled empire.  Under Chairman Mao they were the vanguard of the Red Revolution having displaced the Russians during the war in Korea.

In one act Mao sinicized the peoples of the world.  Marshall McLuhan picked up on it during the Great Leap forward or possibly earlier.

Within two years, or by nineteen sixty-eight the Chinese Red influence was apparent on every campus in the United States.  I still have two copies of the Little Red Book I picked up from Honky Reds from the UofO.

OK.  Talking of historica timelags.  Mao had a deep abiding hatred of the West because of its exploitation of China in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.  Remember all those Chinese artifacts in European and American possession were literally stolen, looted, from the Imperial Palace but even more important was the forcible introduction of opium into China by the British in the first half of the nineteenth century.

If you want to know what the legalization of drugs in America will be like the place to study is China.  The country was completely debilitated by the forceful legalization of opium by the British.  Mao remembered.

I can’t believe that idiot could have so little respect for his country’s heritage that he would smash and burn and try to efface all memory of the past but that is what he did.  But then, perhaps, he thought that as the old China had failed inn its imperial mission everything had to be destroyed and built up in victory anew.  I really haven’t studied Mao’s psychology at all.

Craig

It would be almost impossible for a Westerner to penetrate the Eastern mind.

Dewey

That’s an example of the Liberal racism I’m talking about.  It isn’t difficult at all.  If Freud and Jung proved anything at all it is the universality of psychology.  Hey, we’ve all got ninety-nine point six the same genes, right?  There are only so many psychological types no matter within which racial configuration and the response to the natural world is universally the same no matter in what symbols it is expressed.

What good does it do us to have acquired this tremendous scientific knowledge if we don’t apply it.  That is the question.

At the same time as the Cultural Revolution within China the Chinese colonization of the world began in earnest.  Numbers of colonies have been established in South Americ while colonies in Vancouver, Toronto, London, Paris, New York, San Francisco, LA and other points in the world are being increased on a daily basis.  The invasion of Africa has begun in earnest.

The Chinese will not have the manpower shortage that the English had because they have a reservoir of a billion and a half people.  If they sent a hundred million people each to Europe, America, South America and Africa today they wouldn’t even begin to release the population pressure in China.  But they woud effectively politically dominate the entire world.

Let’s go back to Madison Grant and his theory of racial exclusion.  You have these local exclusions going on in Africa and Sebia as well actually as China.  The Chinese are systematically exterminating racial minorities within China.  Yu have a national exclusion going on in South Africa where the Whites are being ejected by the Bantus while Americans Black and White, cheer.

And you actively have a global struggle for dominance going on which is being won and probably will be won by the Chinese.

Now, let’s go back to the Honky Cat in San Francisco at the Gate of Wine.

In his analysis of the probable results of the Immigration Act of sixty-five the Chinese were the big problem.

I don’t remember if he considered the effect of Moslem and Hindu immigration but what results we’ve had there.  You Liberals and Reds really achieved one there.

Craig

(testily)  How’s that?

Dewey

Well, we conservatives were moving along pretty well in getting the Shah of Iran to bring his country into the twentieth century.  He was soing a good job of eliminating idiotic antiquated Moslem notions.  Women had made good progress; education was on a modern basis.  However there was the usual and to be expected reactionary religious backlash.

The Ayatollah working of that haven of bloodthirsty criminal politicians, Paris…

Craig

Hold it, hold it.  You aren’t going to defame  Paris, the City of Light, are you?

Dewey

I don’t defame anyone, Craig.  I deal in facts.  Paris was the birthplace of the Jacobins of Ninety-three who lived on blood puddings and in recent years the Ayatollah.  Ho Chi Mihn and Pol Pot amongst others had asylum there for years.  They have all been notoriously murderous or genocidal.  For what it’s worth Pol Pot who murdered a huge percentage of his own countrymen has never been apprehended and punished. He lives in luxury in his own country.  This worse than Hitler is living in luxury in his own country.  The Shah was denied asylum anywhere and allowed to be murdered by Moslem fanatics.  They wouldn’t even let him come to the New York that harbored Leon Trotsky, another huge genocidist.  I hear no outcries from Liberals.

Whether it is the Parisian inheritance of Ninety-three or indigenous to the Communist type you can take your choice but I opt for both.  I mean, how stupid can you be, American Liberals rail at the Chinese for violations of human rights.  By whose standard?  The Chinese government is Red.  It follows the party line to the letter.  The same thing will happen here if we let the Reds take over.  They have their own program.

At any the Ayatollah working out of Paris with the incomprehensible aid of American Liberals and Reds set out to overthrow the Shah.  Now think about that.  Liberals aiding the revolution of a reactionary religious leader.  Reds doing the same.  Liberals negating the Shah’s revisions which they will practically kill for in the United States.  What is wrong with this picture?

The Shah, who was a very good and decent man was willfully and criminally vilified by you Liberals and Reds.

Iranians flooded into our country with the immigration bars gone where they turned our universities and streets into bedlam in support of this insane reactionary fanatic.  Nobody examined the facts they just accepted ad hominem insults.

I will never forgive you Liberals for what you did.

In a shameful reversal of policy our elected representatives cowardly withdrew support from its own creature, the Shah, going so far as to refuse him safe asylum Leon Trotsky was allowed, not to mention the religious nut, the Dalai Lama, and John Lennon but the Shah was exposed to his vile ante-diluvian enemies who slaughtered him like on of their so-called unclean pigs.

I have my head in shame for my country.

  Then when that fundamentalis idiot the Ayatollah turned Iran into a reactionary hell you so-called Liberals disowned the situation by saying:  We only help them get their freedom; what they do with it is their business.  Fie!  You Liberals should be ashamed of yourselves; you betray your own principles then laugh at them.

So now because of the Jewish sponsorship of the sixty-five immigration law we’re saddle by a large and growing Moslem population not to mention the stultified Hindus.  I don’t have to remind you what happened when Britain left India.

Craig

You may have forgotten this little fact, Dewey, the Constitution of these United States of America guarantees freedom of religion so I don’t know where you get off being so hard on Moslems nd Hindus.

Dewey

The Constitution forbids the establishment of a State sponsored religion that’s all.  The government is forbidden to pass laws benefiting any specific religion.  That notion has been violated by these Loser or so-called Hate laws which give legal protection to certain faiths.

 Besides as usual you Liberals willfully misunderstand and exaggerate.  No one is denying anyone the right to practice any religion no matter how stupid.  I even defended Jim Jones’ right to make his adherents commit suicide on the basis of freedom of religion.

Just because you have a right to practice a belief system doesn’t place that belief system above criticism.  All religions are primitive in relation to Science.  A Scientific Consciousness is superior to any superstitious Religious Consciousness.

Craig

I wouldn’t say that a religion is superstition.

Dewey

You’ve got to be kidding, Craig.  You used to.  When you were in college you equated religion with superstition.  What’s the matter?  The Grim Reaper got you scared or are you turning superstitious.

Craig

I have reasons for beliving in eternal life.

Dewey

Good.  I don’t.  Anyway importing millions more superstitious idiots has nothing to do with me accepting them as anything else but.  All religions are intlerant, especially the Moslem, so all we’re doing is creating problems for ourselves down the road.

But to get back to the Honky Cat.

If you remember he said the legalizing of Chinese immigration would increase dramatically the number of illegal Chinese immigrants.  All you have to do is watch the news to see he’s right.

He predicted that in fifty years San Francisco would be a Chinese city.  He was right.  Oakland too, he missed that.  They’ll probably change Kearny Street to Mao Ze Dong Promenade.  Union Square will be new Tianenmen Square.

Craig

I think there are more Chinese in San Francisco than there used to be but I don’t see them taking over the city.

Dewey

There’s still a decade or so to go Craig.  When I was there the Chinese were all in Chinatown but now they’ve also taken over the Sunset.  That’s a huge territorial expansion.

Now, San Francisco’s population is limited to about seven hundred fifty thousand because of its small land area.  If the Chinese land only fifteen thousand illegals a year, in fifteen years that would be two hundred twenty-five thousand additional people.  When you add illegals and natural growth which will be huge bucause they come here, so they say, because they can have large families, you’re looking at three to four hundred thousand Chinese in addition to the two or three hundred thousand already there.

If even more illegals come in you’re looking at an additional half million or more.  That’s enough to force everyone, White, Black or Hispanic out of San Francisco.

You don’t think they didn’t have a good reason for claiming the Sunset for expansion do you?

Craig

What good reason?

Dewey

The Sunset gives them a coastline.  Transports don’t actually have to land.  Lighters in the form of cruisers or yachts under White ownership can take them off in parties of twenty, thirty or sixty or more and land them unobtrusively.  Given a thousand dollars or so per each the Chinese build up protection from White profiteers.

Once in possession of San Francisco there will be no way to stop them from landing Chinese at will.

Now, these are all Red Chinese.

They will have to be involved in the American political system.  So, in addition to the Black Caucus, the Jewish Caucus, the Irish Caucus, the Hispanic Caucus and whatever you will have the Red Chinese Caucus with laws in place to deny a White Caucus to have any legal objections. 

Once you have open Reds in Congress the White, Black and whatever else Reds will rally round the Chinese Reds who represent the mother lode of Reds in China.  Then the conflict will come out into the open.

Once the Chines have legitmized their presence in the Bay Area larger numbers of Chinese will be sent over from China until the Chinese are in possession of the West Coast from British, by now Chinese Columbia or, perhaps, New Sinkiang down to Baja.

The racial rules propounded by Madison Grant will really take effect.  With tens of thousand of Chinese arriving on a daily bais not only will Whites be excluded from the West Coast but also the Blacks and Mexicans.  The nature of the racial ethic is the expulsion of al other differing peoples.

Craig

That’s a pretty grim scenario, Dewey, and I think a false one.  Never forget that all men are brothers.  Intolerance is a sin against our fellow man and a crime against all mankind.  I don’t think the Chinese or anyone else is inferior to me on the basis of color.  Race has no meaning in an enlightened America and a just world.

Dewey

You’re absolutely correct Craig.  Race wouldhave no meaning in an enlightened America and a just world.  But, that’s not the naw the world is and that’s not how race works.

It isn’t a question of whether Blacks, Whites or Yellows are inferior or superior.  Race or culture works on a subliminal level.  People want their world to reflect only their kind whether you’re willing to acknowledge the fact or not.  Goodwill while admirable will have no effect on the future.

Whites take a more cosmopolitan point of view largely because it was thrust upon them.  The Europeans didn’t have the man power to displace the indigenous peoples when they got there so they had to come to an accommodation with the locals to enforce their possession.

In America they or we had the numbers to roll over the sparse population of American Indians.  In East India the British had to employ native troops as well as their own to enforce their rule.  Even then half the British Army was made up of Irishers who took the Queen’s Uniform to escape the rigors of the potato famine.

The Chinese who have been massed in their native land have no such cosmopolitan view.  The British in India could not have succeeded unless their vision of society was more just to more Indian than Indian society had been.  The British rule must have been less oppressive than that of the Indians or no Indians would have rallied to their flag.  That goes without saying.

In addition European Science went so far beyond Indian metaphysics that the British commanded respect on that score alone.  However Science is only knowledge aznd an approach to knowledge which can be learned closing that gap or superiority.

Both the Indians and Chinese have done that at least on a superficial level…

Craig

Superficial?  You mean you don’t think they’ve really grasped it?

Dewey

Racial values, Craig, racial imprinting.  It is axiomatic that you can’t learn what you don’t already know.  The European grasp of Science is bred in the bone.  Our conception of Science was developed by our Aryan ancestors in the Middle East.  It is inherited directly from Greco-Egyptian culture.

The scientific concept is indigenous to no other people, nor can it be learned in the half dozen generations or so that other peoples have been struggling with it for at least three or four hundred years and they haven’t mastered it yet.

The concepts haven’t even scratched the surface of the African soul and may not have made too deep an impression on the American Blacks.  I don’t think American Blacks would maintain American achievements if Whites were gone.

The Indians will return to Hindu metaphysical concepts as soon as the scientific impusle is removed.  Their culture is set.  The same with the Chinese.  Just as the Chinese have expelled Whites from the Orient so as they expel Whites throughout the world they will reject scientific principles as un-Chinese.  Their success against the proples of the world will prove the superiority of their ways just as the European successes proved he superiority of their ways.  However Europeans lacked to manpower to displace other peoples which the Chinese possess.

You see, Craig, even if you and I do not think we are innately superior to them, they don’t share our generosity of spirit.  They know that they are superior to us.

So, you see, the Honky Cat actually knew what he was talking about.

Craig

I still think brotherhood will triumph.  It’s the right way.

Dewey

It is that attitude which has stripped the White race of the ability to either resist or to assert itself.  The ideal of brotherhood which you profess is above reproach as an ideal.  In an ideal world of ideal people the vision would have been realized long ago.  That it hasn’t proves that it is a beautiful but unrealizable ideal.

The notion is intellectual while race is visceral.  I admire the ideal and I wish well to all those who sincerely believe it but you will be rolled over like the America of old and you will take your race with you.

You have stripped our race of all pride and self-respect in favor of other races who either hate or despise you.  They do not share your altruism.  You have turned your women into whores for the entertainment of abject peoples; you have made your sons subject to all others.  You have passed laws which enslave them.  They dare not assert their ability against any other people upon pain of humiliation and emasculation by their own in their own homeland.

If they assert their manhood at all they will be sent to a diversity training vlass where they will be taught they are nothing with no rights while all others are their moral superiors.

They have to defer to criminals like the Spade Cat, some Moslem from the desert, some Chinaman who will be insulted because you refer to him as an ‘Oriental’ when in reality you should be referring to him as an ‘Asian.’  Not an Asiatic but an Asian.  Next week you will be shown your political incorrectness when he is given a new PC name.  That’s how they keep you in line.

Oh, by the way, if Chinaman is an insult why isn’t an Englishman.

I don’t know who your Commissars are but they shouldn’t change the rules so often.

(they pause)

 Craig

Well, Dewey, I can see where the Honky Cat made a deep impression on you but I hope none of this puts a damper on our friendship.

Dewey

No need for that.  But now maybe we can go back and integrate all this into the psychological cluster I mentioned a while back

 End of Story.

A Fictional Dialogue

Battleground America:

Breakfast At Champions

by

R.E. Prindle

This is a dialogue inspired by the movie My Dinner With Andre.  I was so entranced by the movie that I wanted to write something along the same lines.

This is it.

Clip 1 of 2.  Fifty pages in each.

I note once again the extreme injustice

through an excess of justice,

to which most liberal spirits come…

–Romain Rolland

 

Craig

     ‘I know you!’ A voice exclaimed as Dewey entered the restaurant.

 Dewey

     ‘So you do!’  Dewey exclaimed in return in delight as he looked down at the seated figure.  ‘Craigo, as I live and breathe.’

Craig

     ‘So you do remember me, hey, Dewey?’

Dewey

     ‘Why wouldn’t I, Craig?  You are one of the great influences on my life.  I’ve been thinking about you a lot.  Tried to look you up but you couldn’t be found in the usual places.  Phone books, city directories and such; not that I have any idea where you’re living.’

 Craig

     ‘I’m still in the Bay Area, San Mateo, unlisted number.’

Dewey

     ‘Oh sure.  What’re you doing here in Portland?’

Craig

     ‘Business, what else?  I was a big influence on your life, huh?  How’s that?  No offence, but I was kinda hurt the last time we met.  I thought I had been a pretty good friend to you but you didn’t seem to have any use for me.’

Dewey

     ‘You were a good friend to me.  I think I failed you too, and that’s what I wanted to talk to you about, make amends before we slide into the chute marked: Oblivion.  I can explain although I don’t think my explanation may make a lot of sense to you.’

Craig

     ‘Go ahead.  Do you remember where we first met?’

Dewey

     ‘Yes.  But only after you reminded me when you reintroduced yourself up on the Hill.’

Craig

     Um, I was a a timekeeper at the Chevy plant on 73rd  and you worked on the assembly line.

Dewey

       ‘Yuh, but I didn’t work for Chevy; I worked for Fisher Body in the Department called ‘Special Hardware’ at the time.  When the line was moving at sixty cars an hour I used to sort out the front seat for the oncoming bodies.  That was an interesting job.  When the line slowed down I sorted out the seats and put them in the car.  When it slowed down further and they were about to lay me off one of the guys on the line left after he got his paycheck, you remember how they used to pay us at lunch break, they didn’t have anyone to take his place but a foreman so I shouted I can do that and took over his job when he never came back.’

Craig

     ‘Oh, is that how you survived the cut?’

     Dewey

     ‘Yeah.  It’s called initiative.  You know how simple those jobs were?  So the foreman asks me do I think I’m capable for such a demanding task.  Ten minutes later I was functioning like a professional auto assembler.  You know, I guess there were some guys who couldn’t handle it.’

Craig.

     ‘There were quite a few who couldn’t cut the jobs.  I was always amazed myself.’

Dewey

     ‘Yah.  After you told me I remembered the attentive eye you gave me when we were all clamoring around the time clock for some reason.  I noted you too, funny how kindred types spot each other in a crowd.  But you always seemed aloof so I dismissed the idea.’

Craig

     ‘They didn’t want us to mingle with the assembly people.  GM wanted management and labor to keep to their separate spheres.  I was afraid you wouldn’t like me when I reminded you.’

Dewey

‘No.  We were simpatico, Craig.  You were different from me but you admired all the right things.  I never told you but you were even way ahead of me in a lot of things.  You always seemed to get there before I did.  At least we always did things on your schedule.  But that’s what I wanted to explain to you, why it seemed our friendship cooled.

Craig

‘Why did it?’

Dewey

‘Well, Craig, I’ve done a lot of reading and studying since that time.  A lot in your major, English, a lot in my major, History, and a lot of psychology and related fields.’

Craig

‘Oh yeah?  Didn’t take up any poetry did you?’

Dewey

     I still won’t read Algernon Swinburne if that’s what you mean but I have read a little Scott and Tennyson.  By the way, did you ever write?

Craig

No.  I tried a couple short stories but I don’t think I finished even them.  I may yet though.

Dewey

I have.

Craig

You?  You mean you write?

Dewey

Yep.  I told you I would, Craig, but you scoffed.  You always had this notion that you were playing Batman to my Robin.  Bothered me.  Yes, I’m three volumes into a roman a fleuve I’ve titled ‘City On The Hill.’  But, nevermind.  Do you know what a psychological cluster is?

Craig

No.  I missed that one, I guess.

Dewey

I’m not surprised. It’s my own notion.  A cluster is a group of memories that are related by content to a central memory that creates an illusion.  The memories may or may not be related in time and place; they may occur before, after or concurrently with the central fixation but they are associated with, influence and are influenced by it.  They are relegated to the subconscious where they usually remain unless you can call them up into your consciousness.  Now, that I am about to begin volume four which I have titled: On The Knees Of The Gods part of which will deal with you and Robie, the cluster came up.  How is Robie, that wonderful wife of yours?

Craig

She died a couple years ago, Dewey.

Dewey

Oh not.  Well, don’t tell me about it.  I always want her alive in my memory.

Craig

I didn’t know you liked Robie that much.

Dewey

Liked her?  I loved her.  She’s the only woman I’ve ever known other than Jeannie that I think I could have married.

Craig

You still married to Jeannie?

Dewey

Yes.  She’s well.  She remembers you and Robie with real affection.

Craig

Why did you like Robie so much?

Dewey

Well, Craig, I’ve thought about this a lot.  It’s just that you have such excellent taste in the people you choose to associate with.  I like the people you like although I have a secret resentment about how you choose who you like.

Craig

What do you mean by that?

Dewey

Well, Craig, you know I admire you and the things you do but you always suffered from insecurity or perhaps an inferiority complex so you always chose people you could feel superior to in one way or another.  That’s why you liked me, because I had excellent qualities that you could admire but overall you were ahead of me so you could condescend to me without feeling challenged.  Robie was a wonderful woman and you couldn’t have chosen better but, at the same time, she came from a lower social strata than you did so that she always, well, you know, so she always…well, she could always be grateful to you because you rescued her from a lower social strata.

You remember how her front teeth were all rotted away.  They had those huge black gaps between her front teeth.  Her parents had never taken the time to give her decent dental care.  I don’t criticize you for it but all your priorities came before fixing her teeth.  I don’t say you wanted her to stay that way but it gave you security to think no one would make a pass at her, I think.

You treated your dog the same way and you always condescended to your kids in this really superior but not unattractive way.  I always felt you treated me the same way.

You knew the quality of us but it was like a guy who recognized diamonds where others only saw coal.  But don’t take me wrong, you were never offensive about it.  You never tried to lord it but the feeling was still there.

But you were a long way ahead of me.  I hope what I have to say will be all good memories of yours.  They actually are of mine but I can’t stop analyzing them.  Remember in the winter of sixty-six when you took us over to that Beatnik coffee house in San Francisco?  The Gate Of Wine?

Craig

On Grant Street in North Beach?  Sure.  That was one of the greatest if not the greatest night of my life.  I was thrilled to my socks but I didn’t think you liked it that much.  I thought I had disappointed you.

Dewey

Like it?  I loved it.  It was the highlight of my stay in the Bay Area.  I would never have had that wonderful experience except for you.  Seriously, Craig, I owe you a lot.  Strangely enough that is the central icon in my psychological cluster of you.  Even though it was one of the most signficant moments in my life for which I can never thank you enough it is also the basis of the resentment that caused me to distance myself from you.  Strange hey?  Do you remember that night well?

Craig

I don’t know if I remember what you do but I remember the four of us together and walking into the place.  God, what atmosphere.  It was packed.  All those rustic looking chairs and tables like maybe some forty-niners put them together.  The buzz of expectation for the intellectual stimulation.  Then that amazing oration by that amazing Black guy…’

Dewey

What’s that?  Oh, a hamburger well done, two slices of onion, french fries and a glass of Porter.

Craig

I’ll have the same, medium hold the onions.

Dewey

     Yeah, I know, I still quiver with excitement when I think about it. You know, Craig, we were very behind the times.  The Beat thing was already passe at the time.  We were in a time lag of about ten years.  You still remembered the Six Gallery recital when Ginsberg first read Howl.  God, you were lucky to walk in on that.  How old were, seventeen or eighteen?

Craig

Seventeen.  Wow, what a night that was.

Dewey

But already Kesey was bad by the time we got to the coffee house, he’d already done the Acid Tests and Haight-Ashbury was almost in full swing, Marty Balin and the Airplane had already given the bottom to the movement with the Matrix Club and there we were thinking we were far out at a Beatnik coffee house.  You remember how much you used to like, even worship, Kesey?

Craig

I thought he was a great writer then and I think he’s a great writer now.  ‘Cuckoo’s Nest’ has become a classic but I still think ‘Sometimes A Great Notion is better.  I couldn’t interest you in them though.

Dewey

No.  I started Cuckoo once but I couldn’t get myself into it.  By the way did you know I knew Kesey a little bit?

Craig

You’re joking?  You talked to him?

Dewey

Yes I did.  I even sold a couple Grateful Dead records to him when I was in the record business in Eugene.

Craig

Lucky guy, you.  I’ll bet he was just great.

Dewey

I’m sure he is great Craig but I didn’t like him any better in person than I did from his fame, which isn’t to say he’s a bad guy, you know, just a matter of taste.

Craig

Do you remember his adventures in the Bay Area.  God, I thought everything he did was great.  He was so avant garde I could never hope to catch up.

Dewey

Well, I can’t forgive him for leading his generation down the garden path of drugs.  I thought the Acid Tests were wrong then and I think he did his generation a great disservice by legitimizing LSD.  But the funny thing, the reason I dislike him most doesn’t really have anything to do with him and the memories associated with him are attached to you before I even knew you.

Craig

How can that be?

Dewey

That’s what I was saying; that’s how a memory cluster works.  It associates memories that the subconscious relates to each other as though they were all one big incident.  So, even though you didn’t have anything to do with a lot of this my mind places you into the same context; that’s part of the reason I drew away from you, you see, not your fault at all but subconsciously all my most negative thoughts and memories of you came together in this weird cluster.

In sixty-three, November twenty-second, the day Kennedy bought his one way ticket over the river of no return I was unemployed.  I’d only been married two months and I’d been fired the month before by a guy who had had the same thing done to him with dire consequences so he passed his monkey on to me.

Craig

What happened to him?

Dewey

Well, the same as he did to me they gave him bad references so that it was really hard for him to get a job.  His only way out had been to be co-opted by the Mafia.

Craig

Co-opted by the Mafia?

Dewey

Um hmm.  The company we worked for was owned by this guy from the Chicago Outfit.  Anybody who had been with the company for any time at all was a Mafia stooge.

Craig

You’re kidding me.

Dewey

No, I’m not.  San Francisco was riddled by Mafiosi from Chicago.  I was offered a ‘life time’ job with the Outfit but you know what that means.  Jeannie was a nice looking woman and they told me that once in I was in for life and that they might from time to time want to use her as a prostitute.  But it would be alright because I would get her back and there wouldn’t be any harm done.  Bullshit, man.  So, I told them no and a week later I was out on the street with no chance of getting a decent job.

I’d had a discouraging month or so and I was sitting on this bench down on the little plaza at the foot of Montgomery and Market waiting for a job  interview.  I looked over on the bench and someone had lain a newspaper down beside me with an employment ad circled in red.  Stanford’s psychology department was looking for subjects.  What do you think they wanted them for?

 Craig

Darned if I know, Dewey, it’s your story.

Dewey

CIA drug testing, LSD, speed, all that stuff.  I think it was the same program Kesey was involved with.  I didn’t know what they wanted but I thought maybe I would do it so I put the paper in my pocket and went into this weird art deco building across the street on Market.  It was surreal given my mental condition.  The inside of the building was all steel.  A big atrium with steel elevators, in the middle in open steel cages, perforated steel walkways around the floors, steel walls; a real monument to steel.

Have you ever been back in the library stacks at Berkeley.  Yeah?  Remember how the room went up for fifty feet or so with no dividers other than those perforated steel gratings?  I had some queer four floors up piss four floors down  through the grating on me.  By the time it would have got to me there was nothing left but that’s how those perverts at UC thought and acted.

Steel may be steel but I’ve never seen anything like this building this side of a locomotive.  I had an interview there with a guy who I later found out was very famous in an underground fashion where he was known as Dr. Queergenes.  ‘On The Knees Of The Gods’ is centered around him.  I guess he just wanted to see what I looked like because he took one look, sneered at me, then told me to get out.  Rude.  Really ill mannered

When I entered that awesome building I left one world and when I emerged I entered a completely different one.  When I came back out on the street from that house of steel everyone was running around screaming like berserkers just like maybe Khrushchev had dropped the big one.  It took me a long time to get someone to tell me what had happened but finally someone turned a staring face at me and said:  Kennedy’s been shot.

Now, you might think I was dismayed but instead a great feeling of relief flooded over me and the sky turned bright blue.  We all knew they would shoot him if he went to Dallas and now that they did I was glad.  My subconscious overwhelmed my conscious mind as I headed up toward Powell Street in an actual daze.  I had disliked Kennedy so much that I felt like one of the conspirators and actually shared in their guilt.

I didn’t really take the paper with the circled ad out of my pocket but I actually remember nudging and brushing it until it fell out.

Drugs and Kennedy.  I don’t know what they meant to me but November 22 was the first day of the rest of my life.  I was reborn on that day with the hope of a future.  Later I learned that Aldous Huxley died that day too.  Monster influence on me.  I couldn’t get you interested in his writing like you couldn’t get me interested in Kesey.

I wandered around downtown for a couple hours often in the middle of the streets as people ran around like chickens with their heads cut off.  I remember the car traffic seemed to be nonexistent.  I was curious isolated by my guilt so I couldn’t make contact with anyone else I just wandered around looking as crazy as the others.  Finally I went home where I turned on the TV just in time to learn that they had arrested Oswald who I immediately recognized as the scapegoat but that was alright because I too transferred my feeling of guilt to him.  When Ruby shot Oswald that closed the book on my past for me.  On one level I was free.  Only Bobby and King were left and then they got it five years later.

I don’t know why those three men had to go.

Anyway this memory of the ad for drug subjects and the killing of Kennedy is part of the cluster surrounding Kesey and which I irrationally attached to you probably because you were so sold on Kesey.

So here we were at the Gate of Wine which was, by the way, just around the corner from the rooftop Kesey sat on looking out over the City loaded on the speed the Stanford psychologists had injected into him when the cops came to get him.

   The web of society is so interrelated that the question in my mind is that if the CIA hadn’t been trying to find brain washing drugs and hadn’t enlisted the help of academia then Kesey would not have been influenced by drugs in the manner he was, had his his mind blown away as it were, and therefore he probably would have passed over the Acid Tests and society would now be a different place.  So while the straights blame Kesey they have only the CIA, the Government and themselves to blame.  Funny?

You see how we create our own hell with the best of intentions.  The ‘best’ people are more guilty than the ‘worst.’  In retrospect I see Kesey only as a tool of the government, as I might have been.  Imagine what I might have become after massive doses of LSD and Speed.

I hadn’t eaten and I was really hungry but you were so excited at showing us this place that you wouldn’t hear me.  The Gate was quite a discovery for you too.

Craig

I remember the evening clearly but I don’t remember that.

Dewey

It was.  The four of us go into this place.  I’m wearing my black pin striped job hunting suit and my blue flowered Ernst narrow square bottomed tie over a blue shirt and you’re wearing this dark grey sport coat over the green velour turtle neck Robie and I hated to much.

Craig

Ice blue.  It was ice blue not green and velour shirts were all the rage that year.

Dewey

Ha! Not with anybody with taste.  You were really proud of that shirt and wanted all of us to like it but we hated it.  It was tasteless.  That’s why your memories are filed in my mind in the section labeled: Shirts, cross referenced to Politics, Literature and Drugs.

Craig

I can follow you on Politics, Literature and Drugs Dewey, but you have a section labeled: Shirts?

Dewey

Yeah.  Shirts, Shoes, Socks, Pants, Jackets.  Funny, huh?

Craig

Just a minute.  Socks.  You just mentioned socks.  My velour shirt was more acceptable than those socks you wore.  Don’t say you don’t remember them.

Dewey

Of course I do.  I remember everything.  Those socks were one of a kind.

Craig

You can say that again.  Everybody thought you were weird because of those socks but I stuck by you as a friend.

Dewey

Those socks were not weird.  They were distinctive.

Craig

Oh yes, they were that too.  They were angora socks that only girls wore.  And those colors!

Dewey

Oh man, the memories come flooding back.  It took real balls to wear them but I enjoyed a pair of the brassiest balls ever seen on the Hill.  I really liked those socks.  Terrific pastel colors and like you say long and fuzzy like an angora sweater.  They may have been a little bit on the femmy side but they were daring and startling.  I think that’s what’s wrong with America today:  Socks are really boring.  They’re just drab and unuplifting.  You can’t find socks like that anymore.  Look at these:  Flat dull brown, the only flash is on the toe ends.  These are called Gold Toes or something like that.  That’s all America has to offer today.  I loved the sixties, all ten years of them.

Craig

Well then, let’s just can that talk about my velour shirt.

Dewey

I was just mentioning an historical fact, Craig old boy, it’s not proper to falsify and revise history.

So anyway, we go into this Beat coffee house called the Gate Of Wine for whatever reason because they don’t serve wine.

Craig

There were reasons.

Dewey

Yeah, I know what the reason was now but I didn’t then.  We’re late and the place is packed but we were lucky enough to get four seats together in the back.  Most of the people were like us, more or less straight people who were fascinated by the Beatniks.  A lot of suits and dresses.  There were some phony Beats in horizontally striped T-shirts, neckerchiefs and berets like they were French resistance  Apache dancers and even a few authentic Beats.

You’re right, the atmosphere was terrific.  Dark as a tomb.  All the seats were rough hewn like you said, really primitive Cubistic stuff.  Man, it was like being transported to Mars.  The Beats were real Luddites, living in the city and rejecting all the symbols of civilization except for some cutting edge sound equipment and spotlights.

I wanted to eat ’cause I’m hungry as a famished dog but you tell me there isn’t time and they didn’t even want to serve food.  I insist so they bring it just as the orators start and I’m not supposed to eat anymore.  Knife and fork make a lot of clatter but I eat anyway to the disgust of you and everyone else.

While I’m eating these nerd poets get up and recite their stuff.  Heartfelt, maybe, but terrible.

Craig

Those weren’t nerd poets Dewey.  One of them was Lawrence Ferlinghetti, one of the great Beat poets.

Dewey

Oh yeah.  And they apologized because Michael McClure couldn’t be there.  I didn’t know there were any great Beat poets, Craig, they were all crummy.  By the way, did I ever tell you my Ferlinghetti story?  I met him once.

 Craig

No.  How did you meet Lawrence Ferlinghetti?

Dewey

Well, he owned the City Lights Bookstore, you know, up on Columbus near Broadway.  This was like sixty-two at the time of the Cuba crisis when we all thought Khruschev was going to drop the Bomb on Baghdad By The Bay.  I was working for the shipping company at the time.  We were way up in a short ‘scraper on the corner of Kearny and California.  This prop plane, for Chrissakes, came over low and everybody in the office loaded their pants, you should have seen them.  Afterwards we covered our shame by discussing how the Soviets would have used a high flying jet rather than a low flying prop plane.  It wasn’t a very satisfactory excuse but it worked.

That was also about the time they had that free distribution of the Salk vaccine on sugar cubes.  We were all supposed to take time off and go down to get it.  I refused.  Almost got fired for it too.  But, I ramble.

Anyway I must have been coming on like a real hipster because somebody told me that if I was going to be one of them I should meet this Ferlinghetti guy who I had never heard of and get passed on.  As usual I have no idea what’s going on so I don’t have any idea who this guy is.  One lunch time they take me up to this City Lights Bookstore which is a pretty grimy storefront on Columbus which is a pretty grimy street anyway.

You’ve been to City Lights, I presume?

Craig

Many, many times.

Dewey

Yeah?  Well, then you know.  You go into this street level room which was kept dark and unattractive to discourage the idle or curious.  Then off to the left there’s this little narrow stairwell that leads down into a second room which is well lit and where they kept what they considered the good stuff.

Craig

It was.

Dewey

Well, you’re the poet Craig.  They got maybe a couple hundred of these slim little poetry books sparsely dispersed, none of which I’ve ever heard of so I figure like, wow, what is this?

Then my cicerone tells me that Ferlinghetti is up in his office and I should introduce myself.  Pass inspection I guess.  So when you turn around to go back up the steps off to the right up a branch set of steps is this little office with a little desk at which Ferlinghetti sits.  Well, he is this little skinny guy with a black fringe beard and crazy eyes behind this pair of glasses.  So, anyway, he sits looking up at me and I stand looking down at him.  Not knowing what else to do I say: Hi.  He just continues to look at me with his legs spread so I figure maybe he’s queer and wants a blow job.  He doesn’t say anything so I turn around and walk out, I don’t give blow jobs.  My hipster career is finished in SF just like that.  None of them will talk to me anymore.

So, now that you say Ferlinghetti was reading I remember him well enough of these so-called poets.  After being  bored by three of them they get around to the prose.

Now, here’s where we come in.  They got two orators this Friday night.  One is a little skinny White guy and the other is this humongous Black guy.  Remember?

Craig

Vaguely, vaguely.  I remember the Spade Cat pretty well, but go on.  I haven’t thought of this for years.

Dewey

Well, you know this White guy gets up and he’s really timid acting; he doesn’t really stutter but he falters a lot and looks really uncertain.  Real dry academic delivery.  Nobody likes him but me.

He goes on that he has been studying the political and social scene in the country pretty closely, like anybody cares.  He has some pretty unpleasant things for us he knows but they’re pretty important so we better listen up.  I’d finished eating by then, screw Ferlinghetti, so I was paying attention.

White Guy says that a new immigration law had taken effect in ’65 that would accelerate a number of processes in the United States that would destroy the importance of the States proper and lead to a condition he called a Union Of Autonomous Peoples.

He pointed out that at the turn of the century when the Eastern and Southern Europeans began to immigrate even though the talk was of a Melting Pot the seeds of autonomous peoples had been planted.  There was a lot of 0pposition at the time to the influx of Jews and Sicilians who thinking people at the time thought were unassimilable.

Craig

Hmmm.  I’ve heard this before.

Dewey

Right.  He didn’t get hissed yet but there was a lot of shifting around uneasily when he mentions Eastern and Southern Europeans; always a tender spot.  He says that right there in San Francisco some far seeing men like Dennis Kearny, after whom Kearny Street is named, and others had got the Chinese Exclusion Bill passed in eighteen eighty-two and they had worked hard to keep the Japanese out at the turn of the century.  This was all to the good, he says, and the patriots on the East Coast should have been heeded about the Jews and Italians but they weren’t.

Craig

C’mon, hey , really.  You’re not saying you agree with him?

Dewey

I’m not saying anything yet, I’m just reporting.  But, you’re right.  About then he gets a few hisses and a cat call or two and somebody shouts for him to sit down.

Wait a minute, he says, the Beats stand for the unlimited right of free speech.  I don’t have any other forum to say this.

Right, I say, to general disapproval, let him speak, he’s got a right.  So he goes on.

He explains the necessity of the restrictions placed on immigration during the twenties and their beneficial results.  Then he goes on in this dry explanation of the subsequent immigration acts that maintained the status quo of the twenties.  All that good work has now been undone, he says, by this new immigration law that opens the doors to all the peoples of Asia.  Couple billion of them which as he rightly says is a lot of people.

The reason the law was passed, he goes on, was so that the Jews who lived in Israel, which is a tiny spot on the western edge of Asia, could come and go to the United States as they pleased.

But America, he says, has never been able to digest all the peoples who came in before nineteen twenty.  The concept of the Melting Pot had tended to be centrifugal which eroded the national identities which these people cherished as they became one people.  Then countervailing centripetal force had been created to break apart the Melting Pot and reinforce national identities after the Second World War.  This new law would eliminate any chance of one people being created at the expense of national unity.

Now that totally unassimilable peoples like the Chinese and religions like the Moslems could enter the country at will the effect would be to accelerate the process into political units of peoples rather than administrative units of States.

He pointed out that the Chinese had been at least a semi-autonomous people in Chinatown from the beginning.  He said that the writ of the law of the United States did not loom very large in Chinatown.  Now that they could come in legally the number of illegal entrys would increase wildly.

As the authorities had no way of checking inside Chinatown the Chinese would function as a part of China.  Within fifty years, he said, all of San Francisco would be Chinese.

If you remember the booing and hissing was increasing but he was on fairly safe ground until he brought up what he called the Negro revolt.  He was the first guy I know who had this stuff all figured out.  He was launching into the sixty-five Watts riot when they really started shouting and screaming calling for his blood.  He was practically crying.

But, freedom of speech, freedom of thought, freedom of conscience, he was crying, the Beat scene is supposed to be the only place left where you can speak openly and honestly.  I read it in Time Magazine.

Well, no one read Time Magazine in the Gate of Wine apparently.  This authority figure gets up, Ferlinghetti probably, and tries to quiet the crowd down while he tells this poor White guy he’d better go now.

The White Guy runs the gauntlet down the center aisle shouts out as he goes through the door:  There is no freedom of speech in America; the US is a nation of slaves.

Craig

I don’t remember that.

Dewey

Not pleasant; pretty strong stuff I thought.  I didn’t know what to think.  Then this big black guy gets up to the general approval of the crowd.

I don’t think that’s what America stands for, he begins sententiously.  I’m black and I know what it means to be discriminated against for no reason other than color.  That crackpot privileged White Boy he ain’t got nothin’ to complain about he can walk down the street without being harassed.  Any white man or woman can.  I’m glad he left and I’m glad you threw him out.

He speaks in this deep rich bass like James Earl Jones and immediately wins the audience over.  Everybody loves him including you.

This guy doesn’t falter or stutter but rolls on like de big ribber with the right tone of righteous indignation.  You’ll probably remember this because as hip as I liked to think myself this guy is using terms like I’d never heard yet.  I went out and got some hip lessons immediately.

This black guy doesn’t have the hip jargon down like Lord Buckley but he’s talking faster than I can listen.  I’m surprised you didn’t know Lord Buckley the hippest raconteur alive.  But you weren’t into the Folk Music scene like you were into the literary scene.

Craig

I was more into the emerging Rock scene than the Folk scene.  I always thought you were a little behind the times there.  I remember when I really understood ‘Rubber Soul’ – the Beatles- but neither you nor Robie or Jeannie had a chance of getting it.

Dewey

I still haven’t got it.  Well, I did hang onto the Folk thing until the very end.  The songs on Rubber Soul you pointed out as so good sounded just like noise to the rest of us.  I afterwards became quite an adept in Rock music if you remember but even though I can handle Blue Cheer which few people can I have never been able to accustom myself to Rubber Soul or the Beatles for that matter.  Real Charlie Manson music; helter skelter and all that. Makes you shudder just to thing about it.

Anyway this black guy is going on about how a Spade Cat can’t walk down the street with a White Chick without getting a lot of flack even in a cosmopolitan center like San Francisco.

Well, I can pick out White Chick as probably meaning a white woman but I can’t make out what I’m hearing as a spayed cat.  I can’t imagine what a spayed cat has to with a white chick.

     So after about the fifteenth spayed cat I have to ask, to the general disapproval of all what a spayed cat has to do with anything.  So you tell me in a very condescending way that he means a black man, a Spade Cat as in a catman black as the ace of spades.  Right.  So this guy is winning hearts right and left except for me.  I spot something wrong in the guy.

He ends his spiel. The talk fest is over and everybody is filing out.  Man, black people just have soul, people are saying.  They feel so much more deeply than we do and twaddle like that.  Really racist stuff.  You were knocked out by this guy.

Craig

Well, Dewey, honestly I thought he was a very open man and that he had a legitimate complaint.  I had great compassion for him.  I thought then and I think now that discrimination is wrong.

Dewey

Yeah, but see, you don’t know the twist.

Craig

What twist?

Dewey

The twist is this.  This is quite a story.  I can’t explain the cause of the effect produced by our visit to the Gate of Wine but that evening was one of the most traumatic of my life.  I was fixated by the place.  Nobody knows this, not even Jeannie, but I was so affected by the experience that I did something I had never done before.  I was compelled to revisit the place but I wanted to examine it in the daytime when its mystique was gone.

The next day was a Saturday.  I had never gone anywhere without my wife since we were married but without telling her where I was going I drove back over to the City.  I hoped the place would be open for lunch but it was all shuttered up.

My actions were weird even to myself but something other than my conscious mind was controlling me.  I walked all around the building examining it, even palpating the walls.  Then I noticed standing on the corner the big black Spade orator of the previous evening.  He was even huger up close.  I mean, six-five and well over three hundred pounds.  I mean he was like the side of the building all by himself.

It was strange.  It was like I wanted to be invisible haunting the place like the Phantom Of The Opera so I acted like I wasn’t there and you know what?  It was like I wasn’t.  Nobody seemed to take notice of me.

Now, here’s the kicker.  What do you think this Spade Cat you people admired over the Honky Cat was?

Craig

I don’t know but I guess you’re going to tell me.

Dewey

Indeed I am.  In the first place as I later discovered he owned the Gate of Wine so he wasn’t just some guy who got up out of the audience but he reserved a place for himself every session and delivered his propaganda.  I’m only guessing now, but I wouldn’t be surprised if the White Guy was his opening act. Further he was a pimp and a junk dealer.  A criminal of the first magnitude.  This guy was big in more ways than one.  He had quite an organization.  He was talking to two of his white junkie slaves so I kind of slid behind his huge shadow on the wall of the Gate of Wine and hid there thinking I couldn’t be seen as I watched and listened.

He kind of noticed me out of the corner of his eye.  He was wondering whether I was a nark trying to land him or a junkie trying to score.  He opted for junkie and went on with his business.

The two white junkies were miniscule beside him.  They were only five-six or seven and as skinny as two pieces of fettucine stuck together; had about that much backbone too, not that I had anything to brag about.  Now, dig this, he’s not only charged them for smack but he wouldn’t sell to them unless they recruited white women for him.  Not just women but white women.  He had an all white stable.  Once he got the women on the boo he could turn them out as prostitutes.

So this ‘kind mistreated’ Spade Cat had a large ring of white heroin slaves that he could abuse at will in a reversal of the old slave days when White masters ruled the roost of Black women.

The White Chicks that this Spade Cat was escorting down the street were really his junkie prostitutes that he was moving from crib to crib.  This guy was operating so openly that everyone knew who he was and what he was doing.  He was paying protection money to the cops so the insults this Spade Cat got weren’t necessarily because he was with a White Chick but because he was known as one of the arch criminals of San Francisco.  The sympathy of you and those other people was completely misplaced.  I knew there was something wrong with him

As I stood watching melting into this big Spade’s shadow a White girl came toward us going to that grocery store that was mid-block across the street from the Gate Of Wine, if you remember.  She was as clean, rosy and pure looking as a young woman could be.  Pert, pleasant and innocent looking as she was blonde, blue-eyed and beautiful.  She was from Cincinatti having just come out to SF a couple years previously with her husband.

Craig

You’re making this up.  How could you possibly know that?

Dewey

Life and philosophy, Horatio, as the Bard said.  Just listen it will all come clear.  Her husband worked for the shipping company I had.  They had been living in Marin but he wanted more action so he moved them to Telegraph Hill.  She had never been in a ‘culturally’ mixed neighborhood. This is where a real clash of cultures comes in for which she and her husband were completely unprepared to deal.  When two cultures clash something has to give; the tragedy was that in those crowded streets of North Beach everything that was good and decent in White culture gave way to everything that was bad and criminal in Black Culture.

So this really clean, self-respecting proud White Chick comes down the street toward this Spade Cat who feels so discriminated against.  Poor bastard.  When she was about twenty feet ahead of us this big pimping junk dealing Spade Cat with this booming bass boice that you people admired so blares out, now get this:  Say mama, that sure is a nice tight little ass you’re swinging along behind you there.

You see, in Black neighborhoods this is how the Spade Cats treat their Black hos.

Craig

Treat their Black what’s?

Dewey

Aha!  Gotcha.  Let me condescendingly explain what a Black Ho is.  Looks like I finally caught up with you.  Black men, or at least a signficant portion of them see women merely as hos.  That is either a mispronunciation of whore or hole.  Women are seen only as holes that can be put to work shakin’ that money maker or whores that know how to use that money maker between their legs.  This pimp Spade Cat certainly looked at all white women that way.

So in a Black community when you come on to an unknown woman in the street about her shapely ass the Black woman is supposed to say something like this:  Thank you, you brown eyed handsome man but don’t thing you be taking any liberties with my sweet ass.

In Black culture as insecure as it is in what was always a hostile White world one Black is always in conspiracy with the others against Whites so they never need formal introductions.  In a way they revert to a more primitive tribal culture in which all are brothers and sisters and therefore already know each other.  Spade Cat expected this White woman who had been brought up in another cultural system in which all people are separate until introduced to abandon all her culture to become what amounts to a common strumpet.  I mean, when’s the last time you looked at a woman and said:  Say mama, you got a real nice ass.  Try it and see what happens.

Besides this Spade Cat was a junk dealer dealing with slaves.  He’d kind of lost all notion of the social niceties except with a microphone in his hand.  If you’ve seen the movie Sid and Nancy you have seen how dealers treat their junkies.

Well, this White Chick comes from a polite background where one’s space is discreetly maintained until one is permitted or invited to break the plane.  So, she throws her nose in the air quite properly disdaining such an improper advance whether from Black or White; I don’t think she was prejudiced, do you?  After all neither you nor I nor any self-respecting man would ever shout across the street to a woman that she has a nice ass nor would a White woman tolerate such behavior from a White man.  But for the same reason you people admired the Spade Cat’s speech she was prepared to ignore what would have a criminal approach from a White man.

When she threw her nose in the air she violated the social code of the Black community of this criminal, pimping, drug dealing Spade Cat.  All six foot five three hundred plus pounds of him took two steps toward her and boomed out:  Listen you White Bitch.  Don’t you act so proud.  When a brown eyed handsome man favors you with a compliment you should be flattered and respond properly.  Now, I’ll say it again:  You’ve got a real pretty tushy.

She pushed her nose up further showing some courage but her step faltered.

So the Spade Cat takes a couple lumbering steps out into the street and bellows:  White Bitch, you show proper respect or I cross this street you’ll regret it.

 Well, shit man, as the Spade Cat would say, she was terrified as well she should have been.  There wasn’t a single movement on a street filled with white people to help her.  The nose comes down and the Spade Cat says again:  Now, I said you got a real nice looking ass, woman.

‘Thank you very much Sir.’  She says but her whole world view had just disappeared.  This was the first moment of the rest of her life and she sure as hell didn’t want to see the second moment.

Craig

You’re sure the African-American was the same guy as the night before, Dewey?

Dewey

Oh yeah.  I’m sure the Spade Cat was the African-American.  But, listen Craig, the story is just beginning.  As I said, I can’t explain the fascination that this place and this experience had on me but I was completely in its grip.  On the following Wednesday instead of going up to Cal-State I drove over to Grant street and the Gate of Wine again.  Only this time I didn’t go up to the coffee house but stood in a kind of trance across the street.  The Spade Cat was still standing on the corner by the Gate of Wine which was apparently his office where he dealt out his balloons.

And then as I watched this blonde White Chick comes down the street again.  It was one of those things where time stands still in a parallel universe.  If there had been a dog scratching his ear on the corner his foot would have remained suspended in the air.

    The Spade Cat watched sullenly as the White Chick came along.  She was terrified.  She had her head in a half nod ready to acknowledge his ‘compliment’ but he just stared at the ground sullenly as she walked by.

He crossed the street to follow behind her.  As she came up on the grocery store he made his move.  I don’t know if you ever really paid attention to that market but there was a delivery door to one side of the entrance.  It had an unlocked screen door.  The Spade Cat came up behind the White Chick, grabbed her by the neck and thrust her through this delivery door.

All the junkies on the street came out of their doorways and holes to stare at the door.  As they stood motionless expectantly I walked past the grocery store to see what was going on.  I was terrified but consciously unmoved by what I saw.  The Spade Cat had pulled off the White Chick’s panties which he had pulled over her head, he pulled her skirt up and thrusting his pelvis forward he had lifted the White Chick onto his dick while with one hand around her neck and the other around her waist he was bouncing her up and down on his dick.

I stepped back into a doorway just as he came roaring out of the delivery entrance.

See how proud you act now White Bitch.  Next time you know how to behave yourself.

I don’t think he noticed me as he rushed past.  I stepped out behind him and walked back.  I looked in to see the skinny white junkie who was clerking push her back and spread her legs to take sloppy seconds.  As I walked slowly down Grant I saw the other white junkies drifting slowly across the street to take their turns.

I kept walking, got in my car and never looked back.  I didn’t know what to think but all I could remember was the cheer the crowd in the Gate of Wine had given the Spade Cat when he stepped down from the podium and the hisses and boos they had given the Honky Cat for telling them the truth about what was going on.’

Craig.

My god, that was horrible.  Why didn’t you go to the police?

Dewey

Not my business.  Besides it would only have been a crime if a White Guy had done that to a woman, Black or White.  When a Black guy does that to a White woman it is called the Payback.  And then, although I didn’t articulate this to myself I realized that Spade Cat was the Black massa on his white junkie plantation on Grant Street in North Beach in San Francisco in the Great State of California in the United States Of America in the year nineteen hundred and sixty-six almost exactly one hundred years since the abolition of Black slavery.  All the white junkies and prostitutes would deny what I said while the cops who were making a lot of money out of the Spade Cat would only be sore at me.  Also I was functioning as though in a dream.  In my heart of hearts I considered San Francisco a very corrupt diabolical place.

Craig

I still think you should have gone to the police.

Dewey

Sure.  Well, as Dylan said the cops don’t need you and man they expect the same.  Anyway a couple weeks later I was down in Berkeley doing some research at the library when I ran into the old receptionist at the shipping company who had come back to Berkeley to get her Masters and PhD. in Music.  She had a cold jolt when she went into the world with a BA in Music only to be told that it wasn’t worth anything more than a job as a receptionist which she could have gotten straight out of high school.  She asked me if I had heard about what happened to Bob’s wife.  Bob isn’t his real name but that’s the one I’ll use.  Doesn’t really matter, he’s dead anyway.  They both are.

I didn’t really care what had happened to Bob and his wife.  Bob had been real snooty to me when I worked at the shipping company.  Everybody there except for a few of us had BAs and Masters from top line schools.  They hired a few high school graduates to lighten their day.  We were all supposed to say funny and unpredictable things like five or six year olds to amuse them.  Bob was one of the most condescending.  He had a degree from Ohio State and I didn’t have one from anywhere so he treated me like a serf.  They all did.

Even though this woman was only a receptionist she still had a BA so she was forbidden to speak to me as an equal at work.  Seeing me on campus she must have thought I was now an equal.  I still remembered the old days but she started telling me this story and I realized that she was describing the scene I had witnessed.  That’s how I knew the blonde woman was from Cincinatti ‘Cause that’s were Bob was from.  Well, my resentment against Bob was so strong I subconsciously tabled the whole memory and didn’t think about it, I thought.

But then in 1968, two years after we graduated from Cal-State up on the Hill when I was down there and visited you and Robie I read in the Chronicle where Bob had been arrested for the murder of a Negro philosopher by the name of Hieronomous Murphy.  Terrific name, huh?  So I began to investigate what had happened in the previous two years.

     It seems that Bob either didn’t understand properly what had happened to his wife or thought she was damaged goods after that horrible incident but at any rate he threw her out which broke that poor inncent’s heart.  She got junked up by the Spade Cat and turned out to his immense satisfaction.  This guy who couldn’t walk down the street with a White Chick without being insulted and so she became another slave on his plantation.  About a year later either by accident or by a hot shot she died putting an end to her miseries.

After she died Bob woke up.  I guess he realized that his desire to live the fast life in the City had been the cause of his wife’s dishonor and death.  He then resolved to take punitive action on the Spade Cat.  He didn’t have to be real clever to figure a way.

By this time the Gate of Wine which seemed to be thriving when we were there had been knocked out of business by the psychedelic revolution and become a straight junkie tavern and hangout.  I went in once; everyone turned junked up eyes on me so I just turned around and walked out.  The Spade Cat still did business on the corner so Bob posed as a junkie and began buying stuff from him to gain his confidence.

Once Spade Cat got used to him he thought it was time to strip Bob of his independence and make him a slave on his Grant Street plantation.

The Spade Cat’s usual mode of subordinating the mind of his junkies after he had captured his body with junk was to make him pick up his stuff in one of those alleys on Telegraph Hill where they kept the garbage cans.  I was told where it was and tried to find it but if I ever did I didn’t recognize it.  I couldn’t find that many gargage cans anywhere and I began to get self-conscious poking around in those alleys.

Before he would release the boo he would make the junkie get down on his knees in what was described to me as this field of garbage cans and give him a blow job.  Nobody had much independence after that.

So Bob knew the routine.  When the Spade Cat told him to meet him in the garbage cans Bob was ready.  He dressed like a real junkie, snap brim hat, full length coat, everything.  He slings the proverbial sawed off shotgun under his arm and begins the long walk down the alley to the Spade Cat who is sitting leisurely on a garbage can with a wry smile on his face waiting for him.

Bob goes down on his knees like he’s going to do the number, the Spade Cat gets his weenie out and everything then Bob flips up his shotgun and from about six inches unloads however many rounds one of those pump actions carry full into the Spade Cat’s face.  Needless to say the Cat didn’t have enough face left to say:  Thank-you, I needed that.

Bob was tracked down immediately and went to Q where some other Spade Cat took a hammer to him which messed up Bob’s skull no little.

So that’s the story of the Spade Cat who couldn’t walk down the street with a White Chick that you guys admired so much.

You having another beer, Craig?

Craig

Sure, why not?

Dewey

Good, because I’m not finished.  Yeah, two more Porters.  No, no desert for me.

Craig

Me, either.   So, is the story true, Dewey, or are you embroidering the truth?

Dewey

No.  This is gospel Craig.  That only takes care of the Spade Cat; we still have the Honky Cat to deal with.

Craig

You followed up on him too?

Dewey

No.  I don’t know what happened to him.  I was always impressed by the fact that the whole crowd except me was sucked in by this fair speaking detestable criminal Black guy while they reviled the White guy who laid his mental treasures at their feet.  He kind of reminded me of a line from a song of the Folk group Hearts And Flowers- They have put the greatest poet of the age in a little padded cage and all he wanted to do was to lay his treasures at their feet.

That’s the way you people treated that poor Honky Cat who had worked long and hard to analyze society to keep it from going wrong only to be reviled because what he had to say ran counter to the prejudices of the day.

Craig

Do you really think the White guy was keyed in?

Dewey:

Well, it seems like everything he said is coming true.  I’ve really thought about and studied immigration results before nineteen sixty-five while forty years later it seems to me all the trends he was describing have developed to the point that they’re undeniable.

Craig

Oh, I remember now.  I can see the guy.  He was about five-six, skinny, glasses and his hair was combed straight up like he was scared witless.

Dewey

Yeah.  You’re right.  It was kinda weird, longer than a crewcut but it still looked like his hair was standing on end in a major fright.

Craig

Right. Right. And everytime they booed him he would crouch down behind the lectern like he was dodging the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune.

Dewey

He had good reason because there was no one there to take his side.  Even if the heavy Spade Cat had bombed he could always get to his brothers and sisters and complain about the Honky bastards.  The White guy being unable to associate with other Whites but isolated by the unavoidable results of his studies could only get weirder and weirder as he became an outcast among his own.

I felt sorry for him.

But over the years what he had to say has stuck inside.  Even though I couldn’t understand very much of what he said then he was so earnest that his words stuck in my mind.  It’s not like I thought about them consciously but my studies seemed to trend in that direction whether I would or not.

Craig

And what he said was…

Dewey

I’ll tell ya.  I want to explain myself but I don’t know where to start or how to get where I want to go.  You graduated in fifty-six just like I did, right.

Craig

Right.

Dewey

 Well, in the first place we all live in a time lag.  None of us are really making decisions based on present realities.  None of us can be that current.  I heard a guy on TV the other day say that Jesse Jackson acted like he thought this was still sixty-eight.  You see, whatever Jackson thinks or does is not based on present day realities of Black affairs but as thing were on the Negro front in sixty-eight.   He thinks all his old arguments apply to the new situation.  He’s stuck in time.

When you read me that bit from ‘Sometimes A Great Notion where Kesey says that the art of the novel is dead because all the great thoughts had been thought and all the great things had been said he was way behind the times although it sounded current.  He was thinking in a time lag of twenty to forty years but his body was living in the present.  That’s probably why he embraced LSD so hard; he had intellectually blasted his present and didn’t know anyway else to get into the future.

He was about twenty years older than us so all his mental influences were before World War Two and a lot them were pre-World War One.  He was really out of time in the raging flood of change he found.

Both you and I were acting in a time lag of ten years while all our influences were pre-fifty-six going back to Victorian literature.  We scarcely recognized the changes while I for one was incapable of incorporating and acting on them.

You know, we weren’t even aware of the background of the Black revolt.

We weren’t so far behind the times as Kesey but all our reactions were centered on a reality that was just behind the big changes.  I’m really only getting my life sorted out now.

Craig

You’re ahead of me if you’re getting this figured out.  I haven’t had a clue for years.

Dewey

Don’t feel bad.  That’s because we weren’t paying attention to the right things or at least understanding them.  There’s a number of strands involved here but do you know what the unifying thread is, at least historically?

Craig

Aw, c’mon Dewey, give me a break.  I don’t know what you think.

Dewey

OK.  Lost that spirit of adventure, hey?  The central problem was the British and European conquest of the world, sometimes known as colonialism.  That was the cause from which all else is effect.

Really the British conquest is the important part because they were so successful.  When you looked at the old globe nearly everything was pink.

When the two world wars altered political realities while England lost its resolve the backlash against England and things English began.

Probably the most important event in modern history was the Seven Years War that was won by England.  It gave them clear title to North America, India and access to the choicest parts of the rest of the world.

When the Seven Years War was over Britannia ruled the waves.  There was no longer competition.

This little country then flooded the world with its citizens.

With no more concern from French interference from Canada British subjects began the conquest of colonial America in earnest.

Thus the racial situation was put in place.  Even in the eighteenth century Britain was scientifically so far ahead of the East and Africa that all those peoples seemed to be and were backward in comparison.  The inevitable result was that Britain saw itself as innately or racially superior.

Hence the Bwana and Mem Sahib attitude in Whites came into existence.  The Bwana attitude is central to our problem today.

Craig

Bwana attitude?  Sounds like conservative racism to me.

Dewey

Actually it belongs to the Liberal mindset.  If one were so disposed it could probably be traced back to the beginning of the nineteenth century when Liberals adopted that superior attitude.  But, the White Man as the superior in Africa was deferred to as Bwana, which I presume means something like Big Fellow.  In India the men were deferred to as Sahib while the women went by Mem Sahib.  All white people without consideration of merit were referred to in this manner.

Over the course of the centuries the conquered peoples acquired access to modern scientific methods and more importantly modern weapons.  A backward tribal African with a machine gun in his hands is equal and possibly the superior in ability to an educated, even Einstein, White with the same weapon.  Kipling put it into a beautiful allegory called ‘The Man Who w

Would Be King.’  John Huston made an even more beautiful movie of the story.  If you remember the story two English soldiers trip over the Himalayas into Central Asia where they establish themselves as godlike kings.  This must have been the way the British first appeared to the Indians themselves.  Invulnerable.

But then one of them takes up with a woman.  Kipling’s attitude toward the woman’s influence in history probably precludes his being read today.  The priests incite the woman to get close to the god king to scratch his face.  She does.  The god-king bleeds destroying his illusion and power because gods don’t bleed.

The natives rebel and kill the two Englishmen who go down with spectacular British fortitude awing the natives.

That’s probably a metaphor for what happened to the English in India.  Kipling was brilliant.  He was right too.  Women will get you everytime.

So the Whites lost the military and moral edge while retaining the conceit of being scientifically superior which we are.  They concealed their loss by feeling compassion for the poor Third Worlders.  Still privately feeling superior but unable to express it openly they nevertheless retain the Bwana attitude although now they punish Whites who do not kowtow to so-called minorities.

Did you ever watch the old Nash Bridges show?  There’s a perfect example of the dilemma.  The name Bridges of course gives away the conception of the role:  A White man reaching out to the minorities of America but not better than them.

I don’t know where the Nash comes from.  Bridges is one of the common folk; there is nothing obviously superior about him.  He dresses terribly and drives an orange car yet there is no doubt that he is the Bwana.  Knows everything and condescends to minorities while bashing Whites.  His Mexican stooge, or sidekick, knows it while all others recognize Bridges quality, except for his ugly White bosses, of course.

In a recent episode Bridges’ Mexican partner who has a tall blonde Swedish American wife wants to get his child enrolled in an elitist private school where the education is better than in the public schools.

The administrator comes across like a member of the Nazi party but as it turns out appearances are deceiving because the school turns out not to be a hive for angry superior Whites but a facist training ground for the new brotherhood of man.  The White Bwanas are leading the way to the integrated paradise.

Interestingly none of the other minorities have a culture of their own.  Unlike the attitude of the Spade Cat there is no clash of cultures.  The only differences are physical.  The whole argument of these people is based on cosmetic differences.  The only differences they can understand are the physical distinctions of race and color.  Fundamental differences of cultural attitudes do not enter into their thinking.

Craig

Sure.  I don’t think anyone is inferior because of race or color if that’s what you mean, Dewey.

Dewey

That’s not what I mean, Craig.  That’s the problem with the writers of the Nash Bridges show.  They think in terms of superiority and inferiority rather than substantial differences in culture.

Race is much more basic than that.

Craig

Now, Dewey, I’ve got to warn you that I can’t tolerate any racism.  I mean, we’ll still be friends but I can’t share any racist opinions.

Dewey

I understand.  Even though racism is disreputable you still don’t deny that races exist, do you?

Craig

I do believe that race is a social construct without any foundation in physiology nor do I think any differences are meaningful.

Dewey

OK.  But listen to this.  Have you ever heard of a guy named Madison Grant?  Hm.  Well, back in the teens during the Great War actually he wrote a book called The Passing Of The Great Race.  It’s on the American Index Of Forbidden Books.

Craig

You mean like the Catholic Index?  There’s no such thing.  We’ve got freedom of speech.

Dewey

That’s where you’re wrong.  There are a large number of so-called racist books that are proscribed.  A terrific war rages in our libraries whether you recognize it or not.  Certain groups even steal proscribed books from libraries and destroy them in an attempt to stamp them out.  Proletarian censorship you might call it.

Craig

Name one.

Dewey

I’ll go you one better and name two.  There is the collection of the Dearborn Independent articles issued in the twenties by Henry Ford which he unfortunately titled The International Jew.  There are very few copies that haven’t been destroyed while the rest have the margins filled with nasty and counter-nasty remarks.  They are all but impossible to get if you want to read them now.  The second is The Protocols Of The Learned Elders Of Zion.

Craig

Why, those are both anti-Semitic.

Dewey

Not the point, Craig.  You asked me to name a proscribed book.  I have.  The Protocols might possibly be anti-Semitic but Ford isn’t.  Both works have a place in the history of the twentieth century without which the century can’t be understood.  Ford has been completely suppressed while you can still get the Protocols through book stores if you’ve got the nerve to order it.

Craig

Why does ordering a book take nerve?

Dewey

You remember the so-called McCarthy era?  Even being caught reading a suspect journal made you a Communist; so even being interested in learning what these books contain marks you as a ‘known’ anti-Semite in the ADL’s eyes.  They’ll add your name to the list of three million other American ‘known’ anti-Semites they keep files on and then interfere with you.

Craig

A private group keeping files on other Americans.  You’re kidding me.

Dewey

No. No.  Racism is everywhere but we’re heading into a digression.  Anyway, Madison Grant wrote this book called The Passing Of The Great Race by which he means the Anglo-Saxons.  But that’s not my point.

The book is not racist in the manner for which it is criticized by the Jews.

Grant points out an interesting fact which is that on a subliminal level one race will not tolerate another race in its midst.  The more aggressive race will always either displace the other race forcing it beyond the borders or if that is not possible exterminate it. 

Just as God is supposed to have created man in His own image so man wants to look about him to see a uniform type in a common culture.

Now, this attitude is innate. It cannot be changed.

Craig

I suppose that’s an excuse for Hitler’s killing six million Jews.

Dewey

I don’t know whether it’s an excuse but it is the underlying reason.  If Hitler wanted to exterminate the Jews, so what.  Now the Jews are calling for the abolition of the White race.  Exterminating it.  They progressed pretty far along the way too.  So who do you love more the Jews or yourself?

The era beginning with the Bolshevik Revolution kicks off the terrifically cruel wars of genocide which issue out of it.  And genocide is now going on everywhere without mentioning the abolition of the White race.

In Serbia the Christians came into conflict with the Moslems.  They were trying to drive them out before the US interfered.

Of course in nineteen forty-eight in India they couldn’t even think of establishing a nation in which Moslems and Hindus were intermixed once the police power of the British was removed.  So what did they do?  They transferred Hindus out of Pakistan, the Hindu homeland for Chrissakes, and Moslems out of Hindu India.

The Moslems had been in India for many more centuries than America has existed yet the two religions still fell on each other with great slaughter when the British police power was removed.

Everywhere the so-called detested British police power was removed the story is the same.

I mean, just look at Africa.

The more aggressive tribes, and Africa is still tribal and not civilized, seized political power.  Without the restraining arm of Britain they got the guns and carried on genocidal warfare against rival tribes who had been there since time began.  Nor was this Black against White but Black against Black just like the rivalry between long heads and round heads in Bavaria.

Idi Amin in Uganda first shipped the British Indian auxiliaries off.  The Indians hated the British so much that they didn’t even choose to go back to beloved Mother India but went to England instead, that’s how much the Indians hated the British.  Then Amin carried on a genocidal warfare against his tribal rivals.

In Rwanda-Burundi where the Watutsies had dominated their tribal rivals for centuries before the British police power was established thus upsetting their hegemony their tribal rivals got the guns and carried on a genocidal war either killing the Tutsies or driving them out of the country.  What greater evidence is there that Madison Grant knew what he was talking about?

In South Africa now that the Whites can no longer impose segregation on the Blacks the Blacks are segregating them or driving them out of the countries, dispossesing them while you Liberals cheer the ‘justice’ of it.  They are now ethnically cleansing South Africa to your applause.  They are leaving in droves or are being killed.  If they defend themselves they will be called bigots and sanctions will be taken against them led by yourselves.  Once the Whites are cleansed or expelled the country will, of course, fall into ruins because Nelson Mandela doesn’t know his ass from a hole in the ground about administering a country and the tribe in possession of the most guns will exterminate all the others.  Within twenty years Johannesburg will be a ruined ghost town with squatters in the wrecks of the skyscrapers.

That is how race works whether you like it, agree with it, or not.  nature does need our intellectual compliance to function.

Now, this racial dominance is happening on the local level, the continental level and the global level.  If we refuse to acknowledge it then we will have to pay the price of extinction, that’s all.  It makes no difference to me.  I’ll be gone.

Let’s transfer out argument to the United States.

Let’s go back to the beginning of the nineteenth century.

Now, in the Catholic and Enlightenment conflict in Europe which shows up religiously as Catholic and Protestant the Protestants captured England peopling the colonies with Protestants except for the Catholic colony of Maryland.

Thus the colonies were English and Protestant.  The Free Masons had a larger hand than is imagined but since that is so little known or understood, let’s skip it.

After the revolt from Britain the new United States threw its doors open to unlimited immigration to the rest of the world which at that time meant only Europe.

The first people to respond in numbers were the Irish.  Now, like it or not, the Irish are a competing race.  The Irish are Celtic while the English are Anglo-Saxon.  That’s like the round heads and long heads in Madison Grant’s Bavaria.  The difference in race is a fact.  Historically that fact cannot be denied although Anglo-Americans refuse to acknowledge it while the Irish do recognize it.  Rivalry and warfare between the two races actually began when the Roman police power was removed from Britain in four hundred something.

The invading Anglo-Saxons actually carried on a genocidal war against the Celts.  The Celts either died or fled into France where they founded the State of Brittany or Little Britain as compared to Great Britain.  They naturally killed the conquered males in the country while, get this, cutting out the tongues of the females so they couldn’t corrupt the language.  Man has quite a history, doesn’t he?  Furthermore they were right if they wanted their culture to remain intact.  So that’s why Hitler killed the Jews and the Jews are now killing the Whites.

The rest of the Celts retreated to Wales, Scotland and Ireland.  The Anglo-Saxons, now Britons, pursued them after a fashion into Ireland which they dominated until just after World War I.

People never forget, so when the Irish came into Anglo-Saxon America they really came not so much as immigrants into a settled land as they were a hostile army invading their Angl0-Saxon enemy.

They really made no attempt to blend, which racially would have been impossible as it was their intent to displace their Anglo-Saxon ‘brothers.’

Wherever they had the numbers, such as in New York City they captured the government and ran an Irish State within the United States.

They ran New York City until the nineteen-thirties when the even more numerous and determined Jews and Italian displaced them.

During the nineteenth century it was virtually impossible for them to capture the Presidency of the United States because that is one of the few offices that require one to be native born.  However in the twenties the Irish Catholic Al Smith ran for president and was defeated.  Supposedly because there was a shameful appeal to racial and religious bigotry.  I see it only as race against race, religion against religion.  The Catholic Irish were no less bigoted than the Anglo-Saxon Protestants.

The second largest enclave of Irish was in Boston where the Irish Catholics had displaced the founding Anglo Protestants.  In Boston the competing races and nations were not numerous enough to dislodge them.  It was here the Kennedys and Fitgeralds developed their power base.

As we all know Joe Junior was being groomed by Big Joe his father to capture the Presidency for the Irish.  Being incorrigibly Irish Joe Senior openly sided with the Nazis.  Not that he himself was a Nazi but the Irish always side with the enemies of England.  Most people probably don’t realize this but the Irish Free State remained neutral during World War Two.

Joe Senior was ambassador to England when he spouted this pro-Nazi nonsense.  What FDR was thinking when he appointed an Irish nationalist to the Court of St. James in wartime I have yet to fathom.  Joe Senior paid the price of his folly when Joe Junior was blown out of the sky on a mission while still behind allied lines.

It may be coincidental or it may have been purposeful that John F. was assigned to the PT boats which was a notoriously  hazardous assignment.  Probably something like Presley being assigned to the Tank Corps on the Russian border.  Somebody hoped he’d be killed.

At any rate, John F. Was elected President of the United States in nineteen sixty so that racial Celts captured the government of the United States of America just as they had New York City in the nineteenth century from their ancient enemy of Roman times, the Anglo-Saxons.

The Catholic Church was thus in power over its spiritual rival, the Prostestant churches.

Craig

Aw, Dewey.  I don’t know what you’ve been smoking but that is the most incredible analysis I’ve ever heard.  John F. Kennedy would have been the all time greatest President if that creep Oswald hadn’t shot him.  Besides it’s politically incorrect to even think such stuff.

Dewey

Ooh, there’s a number of issues in a small compass.  Starting with the last I can’t bother with worrying about being politically correct or incorrect.  I’ve got to be free.  Free to understand things as they are, not as my Commissar tells me.  I refuse to be a slave to an alien ideology and so did you used to be.

Craig

Slave?  Alien?  What are you talking about Dewey?  I’ve never heard anything like this.

End of Clip 1, go to Clip 2.