I’ll admit, I’ve gotten a lot better about this over the years. Which is only to say that I used to be a horrible person.
Yesterday, I stopped by the local grocery store on the way to church so I could get the ice cream (Blue Bell Homemade Vanilla) I promised to bring for the apple pie someone else was bringing for after church hang time.
I hate being late for church. Almost to the point that I will let it ruin my day. Yah. That makes sense doesn’t it. Anyway…..I obviously wanted a close parking space so I could get in, get the half gallon of tasty goodness that only Brenham’s finest and most content cows produce, and get out as quick as possible. That’s when I encountered something else I severely dislike. A car sitting in the middle of the aisle waiting for the people in front of him to finish loading their car so he could have the space closest to the store.
Now I don’t mind people doing that, but if you see another car coming, then move out of the way please. Well, he didn’t. On the left side of him, there was an open space that was maybe 15 feet further away. So I whipped my car around his and jumped into that space so I could get get in the store while he was waiting for that most sacred of parking spaces.
I jumped out of my car and headed straight in. But…..not before giving him a look that might scare most people. And I’m sure it’s scarier because of the fact that I open carry too.
Well, I got in. Got the ice cream. And headed straight for the self checkout so I could get going and still possibly make it to church on time. And then it happened. A bearded gentleman whose probably seen more combat than I ever hoped to see came up to me. He said “Hey man, I’m really sorry I held you up in the parking lot. I have a prosthetic leg so it’s hard for me to walk far and I really needed that close parking space”. He was genuinely apologetic.
Man was I a jerk. Immediately, I had a tear in my eye. And I knew I was a horrible man for acting so childish. I did my best to apologize to him for being such an ass. I might as well had been reduced to a pile of ashes right then and there. He was very nice about it. He shook my hand and accepted my apology. The drive to church was quite solemn for me. All that for a half gallon of ice cream.
Hide these words in your heart today. And don’t forget to consider that someone else might be worse off than you.
Matthew 7: 18 says these “bad fruits” tell us a lot about the “tree,” but that doesn’t give us the right to judge. We must remember that no one is perfect—each of us is a work in progress. While it may be wise not to be too closely associated with such people, we must be careful that we don’t judge them according to our standards and beliefs. We must pray for them and keep a godly attitude. Part of being a loving, caring Christian is to realize that people may not see things in this life exactly as we do. We are not all at the same level of Christian maturity, but we can be sure that God knows everything about each one of us. We must leave any judging to the only righteous judge—Jesus Christ.
James writes: “[ My] brethren, do not speak evil about or accuse one another. He that maligns a brother or judges his brother is maligning and criticizing the Law and judging the Law. But if you judge the Law, you are not a practicer of the Law but a censor and judge [of it]. One only is the Lawgiver and Judge Who is able to save and to destroy [the one Who has the absolute power of life and death]. [But you] who are you that [you presume to] pass judgment on your neighbor?” (James 4: 11-12).
Paul asks, “Who are you to pass judgment on and censure another’s household servant? It is before his own master that he stands or falls. And he shall stand and be upheld, for the Master (the Lord) is mighty to support him and make him stand” (Romans 14: 4).
May THE LORD bless you and keep you today. Go bless someone today.
I do this now and then. As you may or may not know I’m writing yet another book, “The Last Picture Show” which is a loose autobiography. I’m taking it slow and easy but it’s coming along. Included another chapter today and in true form I’m running it up for review. Now, before everyone turns into a critic be advised that this is a DRAFT! Very raw. It takes as much or more time to edit a book as it does to write it.
That having been said, it IS mildly entertaining, a bit politically incorrect and a reflection of time gone by. I didn’t hold anything back so if you’re looking for all “phobics” homo or otherwise, they’re there for you.
It shows the simple, direct society I grew up with. People were more close knit. And I mean street by street. My world in Shreveport was Milton Street. If I wandered to Youree Drive I may as well have been in Wisconsin.
Don’t Ever Date A Colored Girl Chapter 1
“Don’t ever date a colored girl. They’s all got the clap. They get it from they mamas.” My grandmother’s sage advice to me at five years old.
In spite of all the glamour shots of Spanish moss, and cypress trees, Louisiana is about as shit out of luck as one can get when it comes to being from somewhere. It’s hot, muggy, racist, and nobody’s family tree has a fork in it. Mine was no exception. My grandparents were first cousins, and I guess that’s why we all look alike, have every health condition known to America and some third world countries, Louisiana being among that group in spite of it being positioned at the asshole of the Mississippi River.
Long about the time I was three years old God decided it was time to kill me so I contradicted polio and something called the “sleeping sickness.” I lived, no thanks to the medical care of the day, and the following year they gave me a polio vaccination. You can’t make this stuff up folks. So at five I was deaf in one ear, which still rings till this day, blind in one eye and walking like a duck, but by golly I was white and that counted for something I guess.
Being white in a Klan based state had its perks, the main one being there was a whole race somewhere just a below white trash, which is what I was. What that amounted to was we could vote without getting lynched. Now we couldn’t marry a girl with all her teeth because that meant she’d been to a dentist and obviously was a blue blood, not capable of sexual satisfaction ‘cept niggers raped her. Then, of course then there’s the hanging, and Scarlet grows a new hymen just perfect for her fiancé Buddha Montgomery, heir to the gas station and thirty second degree Mason to boot.
All of this meant nothing to a kid growing up in a shotgun shack, living on liver gravy and bread with a flea bitten dog and a yard full of chickens, even in town. The difference between our “neighborhood” and “Nigger town” was the distance between the shacks. Theirs were closer. My most vivid memory was my uncle and dad “gigging” frogs and butchering them in the kitchen sink. All they’d eat were the legs, but they had to cut their heads off anyway, I suppose for the entertainment factor, and I’d watch them eat the frog legs while the heads blinked at them from the counter. They’d actually position the heads so they could see that. And poor old Martin Luther King tried singling “We Shall Overcome” to these guys. He’s lucky he wasn’t blinking from a sink.
I really did end up in a hospital when I had polio, but for minor ailments like nails in the foot, cut throats or pneumonia, you’d get taken to some camp in the swamp where a voodoo woman would blow smoke up your ass (literally) or put a penny on the wound so the spirit of Mr. Lincoln could draw out the poison, I crappith thee not!
I went to an all white school, but let me clarify. There’s white, then there’s white. The whitest kids had clean clothes and smelled good. I had neither. I usually wore a flannel shirt, and blue jeans with iron on patches. Iron on patches were the rage of the age. We was proud of iron on patches. I’d sit by the ironing board and watch in snake amazement as the patch cleaved to the fabric as if by magic. I really didn’t understand the social structure in school, only the fact that certain kids could hit me anytime they wanted to. There was this spoiled brat, Vance, I still remember him, who’d seek me out and beat me up during every recess. One day, in a moment of clarity, I hit him back and he fell, crying, so I hit him again. The teachers had to pull me off, but I think that was possibly the most memorable day of my life, that is until Velma Prigmore took off her blouse under the football stand years later, but I’ll save that for later.
We were surrounded by family but none of us liked each other. I remember that every time there was a get together it ended up in a drunken fight with the kids all screaming, followed by that wild ride back to Shreveport across the Red River bridge with the car bouncing off the rails. The only good thing was at that age when you life flashes before your eyes it doesn’t take long. I know because every time I got my ass beat my life flashed before my eyes. Usually involving blinking frog’s heads.
My life flashed before my eyes when my grandmother got a hold of me once. I think I was five. We had this fat little dog named Maybelline. One day I had to pee, and couldn’t make it so I peed on the wall in the hall. My grandmother came along, saw the pee, then me, then the dog, picked up a stick and beat puppy shit out of Maybelleline. Wow! Remember, this was the days before internet. Next day, pee a little higher, bigger thrashing for Maybelline. Finally, I decided to kill the dog. I peed about two feet ABOVE my head. Now Maybelline was about the size of a fat possum. I have to give my grandmother credit. She did everything she could to match that dog’s ass with that pee before my life flashed before MY eyes!
Louisiana people will eat just about anything, steak, road kill, all manner of guts, small negroes, you name it. After the frogs I realized my dad was crazy and I generally stuck to liver gravy at home. Wonder Bread was safe. Rice. Beyond that was pot luck. Crawfish. Oh my LIVING God! Etched into my still developing mind was the image of huddles of inbreds sucking crawfish asses. Now, I’m not saying that’s wrong, some of you might suck crawfish asses, just not me. And Boudin sausage. I think there might be an FDA warning on that now. For those of you who do t know what that tastes like, take a dirty sock, piss on it, wring it out and stuff it in your mouth. There you go. Don’t forget to wash it down with some of dat good ol’ Jax beer.
And Jesus? God DAMN did they have Jesus. My grandmother on my mother’s side, you know, the one who married her cousin, well, when we was living on Laurel Street, she would drag me down the the Baptist church and sit me right up there in the amen pew while this crazy old man screamed that me, and practically everyone else there was going to “hayell” and there wasn’t a damn thing we could do about it except put something in that plate he had passed around. Jesus scared the piss out of me until I was twenty-eight years old! I was just glad I wasn’t Catholic, and double glad I wasn’t black, or God forbid a black Catholic. Hell, if I turned out to be one of those I’d have just jumped into the Red River and been done with it.
I was told, when we lived Kaywood Apartments in Bossier City, to never go near the river. Now this is how much common sense we had at that age, and survival skills. With God, mosquitoes, teachers, the Klan and your parents all trying to kill you, you knew damn well not to go surfing on the Red River. This factor wore off by the time you got to high school because they were forever fishing teens out from under logs where the gators had stuffed them for seasoning. Oh yeah, we had those too. See the contrast; kids these days don’t know any better than to eat a dishwasher tablet and we used to play among the gators. We knew better than to eat a dishwasher tablet, one, because there weren’t any, and two, if there had been we’d have ended up down on the bayou with some old black lady blowing smoke up our ass. That’s called preventive medicine.
Not all things were bad. School lunches were a bitch. Till this day I have a prejudice. You see, all the school cooks were big, fat black women, and the result was whatever they come up with. Liver and onions, fried chicken, chicken and rice and courtesy of Huey Long you could eat all you wanted. They all had them Aunt Jemima wraps on their heads, a big smile, and even bigger spoons. They would throw mashed potatoes on the plate and it would drip over the side. Even today I have a hard time eating white woman cooking to the point of giving it to the dog when she looks away. Then you’d come home on the Good Ship Reality and find your uncle and dad in the kitchen with a case of Jax beer and a croak sack full of unfortunate frogs.
Louisiana weather sucks like a French whore, and I know something about French whores because Louisiana is full of them. You can’t see the tornadoes for the trees. I still remember the alert coming on the TV, the one you had to slap on the top to get reception from the station five miles away, and a very serious voice saying, “This is a severe tornado alert!” As opposed to the more mundane kind I suppose. Now, you didn’t know where it was, couldn’t see it, I’m told you could hear it, but that’s hard from under the bed. If you lived you’d stay up all night anyway just in case it had babies on the way through. Then the next day, in school, you have a bomb drill because everyone just knew the Russians were gonna bomb Barksdale Air Force Base at any given moment. All of this and the grown ups were worried about the blacks drinking out of the wrong water fountain. But . . . they all had Jesus!
Long about ’56 or ’57 or so my dad took a job in Lake Charles. I think I was still an only child, in fact I, sure of it because I was alone in the back yard. My sister was born later back in Kaywood Apartments. I don’t really remember when my brother came along. On Milton Street I just looked up one day and he was there. Anyway, I remember everyone spoke French. It was muggy, and there was this guy called Uncle Adam who had a new car. There wasn’t any air conditioning and that made the ride to school hell. Hurricane Audrey had come roaring through, and dad was a roofer. Seeing as most of the roofs were now out in the Gulf of Mexico there seemed to be a pot of money to be made so we moved down there. The one thing I remember was driving along the coast where the hurricane came in. You could smell the dead people, and some of them, or parts thereof were stuck on barbed wire fences with crabs crawling on them. Took me forty years to eat crab after that and still only eat Alaskan crabs. I figure they have more moral fiber than Louisiana crabs.
By the time we moved to Texas I was ten years old, and pretty much bat-shit crazy. Had a permanent ringing in my ears, constantly looking over my shoulder for bombs, blacks, and bloody crosses, and the scary part is I left an entire state behind that thought just like me, and they’re still THERE! Well, the ones the gators didn’t get. Texas was a whole new deal, and I had to work it, which has only taken me fifty-five years, six wives, ten houses and three fortunes.
The Last Picture Show Chapter 2
There was a movie back in the seventies, I think, The Last Picture Show. It was in black and white. A lot of people thought that was for effect, but the truth of the matter is that format exemplified the Texas that I grew up in. Our lives were black and white, both politically and physically. Color movies were rare, and rainbow life was even harder to find.
We had the old pickups, piss warm beer, skinny, smelly girls, and, of course there was one hottie. Ours was Sharon. Sharon even looked like the blonde in the movie, and she had breasts, a bonus for white chicks because uually only Mexican girls had a set of those. She even ended up on the cover of Playboy years later as part of a spread called, “The Girls of Texas.” I never did get to first base with her because I was scared of girls, but she had a horse! I’m not kidding. Right there in the middle of town in her back yard.
Anyway, I digress. I wasn’t born in Texas, but I got there as quick as I could which was the morning I woke up, at ten years old, in Texas, and the first thing I noticed was that it was flat. I was in central Texas. This place is like five states, and about the only thing they all agree on is they don’t like Yankees i.e. anyone outside of Texas! You can be a wetback and you’ll fare better than a New Yorker down here. It’s a little better now with the interstate and all, but there’s still some lingering resentment to people who talk too fast and and wear sneakers. All but Austin, they wear sneakers there but we have to accept that because we can’t move the capitol.
So here I was, in September, looking out of a motel window at hotter than hell Texas! Texas is hotter than chicken grease. Now, bear in mind that most of the population had to go to a movie to sit in air conditioning. Water coolers were the norm. Your state of the art water cooler had a hose keeping the pan filled, with this toilette bobber turning it on and off, and this little pump thingy pushing the water up, sprinkling the hay filters on the four sides, yeah, you heard me right, hay, and at least in theory that would cool a house. Well, that was a crock of shit, and it smelled like shit. Horse shit! Well, nobody had one of those! What they had was no hose, no pump, second hand, rusting gadget with several tow-headed kids running out with a pan pouring water over moldy hay when granny started wheezing.
It would cool you if you sat right in front of it. Consequently everyone drank beer. Dad drank beer, Mom drank beer, the kids snuck beer, the dog drank beer, EVERYONE drank beer. You could drink beer all day, with sweet tea, tons of water, and never piss. I missed Shreveport.
I had to get into school. Killeen had so few schools we went a half a day. It was totally integrated because there were no schools so I saw my first black kid in school. Didn’t affect me. No, I mean it. Made me no difference at all. It was so damn hot nobody cared. We were all just trying to live. There was another tribe there, too. Mexicans. There were aspects to that phenomenon I appreciated.
Back in Louisiana the physical education was recess, maybe a little baseball IF you were up to it, and it wasn’t very challenging because we were all white. But TEXAS! You ran until you puked, played baseball with Willie Mays third cousin and then took a shower with some kid named Santos, who SHAVED! By the way, this was the same Santos who slept with your wife years later when you were in the county jail. You’d be in there, and some guy would say, “Hey man! Santos is crawling up on your wife right now!” Well! I went to school with Santos.
In short order I was in Junior High. I was dumber than a box of rocks. I was eating a little better than back in the states , but the heat cancelled that out. Had to walk to school. There were guidelines. If you, say, lived in the next county you’d get a bus, any closer than that, and you were on your own.
In Shreveport if you misbehaved you’d get a stern talking to with a note home. Of course, I was always stupid enough to take the note to my mom, and she’d chew on me, quoting the note, emphasizing the wording as she went, but TEXAS! They got around all that crap, just dragged you out in the hall and beat your ass. Every morning sounded like rifle shots from a firing squad. I must admit it was entertaining when you got a “crier,” and if you got a begger, oh my GOD! We’d hang out the door to see that, and if it was Santos, well, my heart would actually skip a beat.
Now, education. Let me gauge the quality. I didn’t learn a God Damn thing in all my years of Texas public schooling except typing, lunch, and how to avoid getting my ass beat. They were actually stupid enough to put a clock in every room so we all learned “clock” real good! Long about the ninth grade I discovered girls. Oh, they were always there it’s just that they all had to wear dresses below their knees and looked like Olive Oyle. I fell in love with a girl named Grace Barnes. She looked like Olive Oyle, too, but she had a cute face. It wasn’t a torrid romance. She gave me her cake at lunch once, but then I came upon these new creatures we didn’t have in Louisiana. MEXICAN GIRLS! When you consider the separation of the races in Louisiana you must understand that Hispanics were not the issue. Everything was black and white. That, and I never saw a Mexican before I came to Texas, except on the John Wayne version of the “Alamo.” But, Texas was completely different. And Mexican GIRLS? Viva Zapata!
For the record, Mexican girls are born fully grown. Just thought you needed to know that. They had to wear the same dresses as the other girls but I’d trade one Mexican calf, even half a calf, for a butt naked Anglo girl any day, all except Sharon, of course, but they all have a brother named Santos.
I didn’t excel in high school except one time. We had this fountain in the commons. Kids threw coins in it. Ok, do the math; fountain full of change, poor white trash, yeah, you get the drift. Anyway, me, Joe Leeth and some other numbnut came up with a plan. I mean there was a lot of money in there, just sitting. So, Joe was gonna hold my belt and I’d brace my feet against the edge of the fountain. The plan was to ease me down and once I was close enough I’d just reach in and scoop up the loot.
We should have paid more attention in physics class and we would’ve understood the laws of Leverage better. At about forty five degrees my weight increased exponentially, combined with the chickenshit that was holding my belt, and in I went.
I made a perfect human shape in the green slime on the bottom of the fountain. Didn’t get a dime. Came up, and as the water drained out of my ears the laughter rolled in. Well, we all got taken to the office. Of course you know they had to beat all our asses, my wet ass being first. Then they marched us out to the football locker room, because that’s where the clothes dryer was, and they beat our asses, then back to class. Life was so much simpler back then. I’m just glad I didn’t have hemorrhoids.
I began writing in high school. Don’t know what drove me to it, I hated school, and everything that had anything to do with it, but for some reason I could string a story. Beginning in the tenth grade I’d buy a two hundred page spiral notebook and jump right in. When the notebook was full, the book was finished. The first was a collection of short stories. I got my ideas from dreams. Now in old time Texas you dreamed a lot because we had those old timey gas space heaters. They were free standing with no outlet to the outside, just this hot box at the center of the main room. I guess that constituted central heat. Anyway it beat freezing, however, it did put out a fair amount of carbon monoxide, but them old timers weren’t worried about that shit. You got thirteen kids what’s one, more or less. So, during the school year in your sleep, hovering between heaven and hell, you’d dream, and I wrote it all down.
My first book was a hit. Now this was the sixties and my stories were right up there with the Beatles. Next year I wrote a gangster story, but my best seller was in my senior year. I came up with a plot about this pissed off little nerd (it was autobiographical) who planned to bomb the school cafeteria. God, it was good. It went hour by hour as the bomb ticked away, kids milling around, teachers watching, then BOOM! First responders, last kisses, and lots of drama.
I passed it to my school mates, and all went well until someone gave it to Miss Hornbuckle, who never had a date in her fifty-six years, and she gave it to the principle, Mr. Patterson! From there I went to the office. Patterson had read it, and, of course, first things first, he beat my ass, but then he called the cops. There was an issue with my book. Uh, the bomb was functional. You see, I’d spent the first ten years of my life in Shreveport, Louisiana, with oil drills, dynamite, blasting caps, stuff like that, and it wasn’t very hard to run two wires from the bell and striker of an old alarm clock, throw in a lantern battery, run the two wires down to a blasting cap that was tucked inside six sticks of dynamite, alarm goes off, striker hits the bell, sends sparks to the blasting cap, lunch is over. It was a good bomb, too. Blew my ass up!
Well, there I was rubbing my ass in Mr. Patterson’s office when the cars rolled up, the boys got out, and the room filled up with laws. Now, to be a cop in 1960s Texas you had to own a gun, and and your training was not pull it on folks like Bonnie and Clyde. But, a kid with a Big Chief notebook and a bruised butt? Shut the front door. You gotta remember, Killeen was a boring town. In the sixties we couldn’t even muster a race riot. I must admit that Mr. Patterson was a tad bit smarter than the cops. They didn’t have a clue so he clued them in. Old bastard! Well, to make a long story short, got my ass busted, missed lunch, and they kept my book as “evidence.” Oh, and Miss Hornbuckle told me I’d never be able to communicate in the English language. What did she know about English? She taught school in Texas!
The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas Chapter 3
What do you do when your whiny son gets cleaned out by a domineering ex-wife, loses his ass, hat, and all his cattle, ends up sitting around crying all the time? Well, my mother got me a job in a whorehouse. My first wife, Charsha was half Navaho, half bitch, and I was one hundred percent stupid. Uh, she was also my first, if you know what I mean.
I’d been injured in a car wreck, and a settlement was looming on the horizon so she fell in love, well for two years at least, then cleaned me out, took my settlement, and ran off with her sister’s husband. Ever see a set of Legos fall apart? Well, that was me.
I went to work in a pool hall. Hey, it’s Texas, ok. What did you expect, a nuclear plant? By and by mom got me a job working for Finis Patrick Anderson. Now Pat wasn’t, like, Mafia, or anything like that, but he had his ways, ok? He made me the door man in a dance club. It was called the My O My Club, derived from Memorial Yoke of Military Youth. Young soldiers, Vietnam, naked women and beer, yeah, you get used to it. The women were real, but the beer wasn’t. Killeen didn’t allow bars back then so the GIs were served a beer called Metbrew, which was near beer. The girls would chide the kids into buying them “cocktails” which were five dollars a pop, and were a lot of Seven Up with a shot of Coke, giving the illusion of champagne. These bitches would gulp down the fake cocktails until they peed their pants, or the soldier ran out of money, and then they’d move to the next table. For the uninformed this was a rip off.
And there were dancers. Now they couldn’t go totally nude, but topless was cool. Wiggle, wiggle, wiggle, wiggle, YEAH. Dollars in the G String, the whole nine yards. Mom figured this would sober me up but wanna know how stupid I was? Never got laid! I was a good employee. I worked the door for about six months and ended up being a bag man.
There was a division manager who came up from Austin to make deposits at about three in he morning, and my job was to carry a shotgun under a long coat and shoot anyone who approached him. I crappeth Thee NOT! Never got to shoot anybody, but it was nice to think I could. From there Pat moved me over to his “Head Shop” which sold all paraphernalia required to service the expanding mind. I ran a cash register and carried a Colt Peacemaker under my sport coat, which was my real job. In addition to that I was a driver bringing booze up from Burnet into Killeen for the City Council to enjoy and that got us a free pass for the completely obvious speak easy adjacent to the head shop that Pat provided for the well heeled of Killeen society. Long about then I couldn’t remember my ex’s friggin’ NAME!
Long about this time I fell in love with a sixteen year old girl, ran off to Mexico, married her and it took Pat to save me from hanging. My son, Wilbur came along a year after that, and one of my bonuses was cases of baby formula so you can say that Master Chief Wilbur Witt began life on payoff from the mob.
Now, just because I was moved to a new job didn’t mean I could neglect my previous ones. On a typical day I’d count opening cash at the My O My, open the bar, run to Burnet, come back with a load, work the store, and end up dropping the combined deposits at night. The up side was I worked for Pat and if I walked into the Blue Bonnet Café and there was no seating someone decided they were done, pay their check and leave. You know, thinking back, I had a good life. Sometime after this I decided to go to school. I must have been out of my mind.
Killeen was a Wild West Show in the seventies. There was a shooting gallery in the space between two buildings where there were .22 rifles using “shorts” for target shooting, and naturally the soldiers would line up to demonstrate their skill only to be out done by a pimp using a personal .25 automatic. I considered automatics to be for queers so my peacemaker was a single action .357 magnum, and brothers and sisters, I could use it! My stripes never really changed. After owning several autos from cheap 9’s to Smith and Wesson 40’s, I settled back on the same old 1880’s revolver I carried in 1974. I’ve heard all the “firepower” arguments, and seen cops shoot some guy five hundred and seventy times for having an expired driver license, and my advice is learn to shoot, bitch!
I learned from the best, pimps, bagmen, contractors, whores and an occasional cop who knew what he was doing. The cops knew we were all packing, but there were very few shootouts. An armed society is a polite society.
Got arrested one time for running the speak easy. The cops had to bust our balls every now and then to please the electorate, and convince everyone that the police chief was honest, which he wasn’t, he was gay and Pat owned him, but I got busted. Ended up in a holding tank, and the company lawyer, the right honorable Joe Barron showed up drunk in his Dingo boots and got out in the cell with me. His partner had to spring us both. Eventually he whole thing was dropped for lack of evidence. Joe represented me in my divorce and showed up in a pair of Bahama Shorts and a straw hat and Judge Black made him stand in the corner for ten minutes for contempt of court. You can’t make this stuff up, folks.
Wives, Ex-Wives, and a few Bitches I’d like to forget Chapter 4
I ain’t even gonna lie to you, I’ve been married six times with divorces between them . . . mostly. I never did figure women out, that’s why I quit getting married. I hate winter divorces. The days are longer in the summer, and them nights don’t close in on you near as bad. Only married one Texas girl, Charsha. She was half Apache, half black, and all bitch. I was in love. Like a told you, she was my first. Had to try twice before I got it right, but after doing the deed I considered that if I could pull this off everything was gonna be alright.
Charsha was a cheat. She screwed everybody but the milkman, and the only reason she missed him is because we didn’t have one. She was tough as a boot, thin as a rail, and she could step to the Cotton Eyed Joe. I think she still had her baby teeth because they were still falling out. She let me have sex with her on Tuesdays and Fridays because those were her bowling nights, and that meant something, I guess. I think she had an orgasm with me, but she may have been faking that night. I was snake amazed when she left me, and she really packed it in my butt. I came home, and she calmly told me, “I’m leaving you in twenty days.” That was on December 5th, 1973. She timed it so as to leave me on Christmas.
I took it well. I cried like a little bitch. Oh, I mean I cried! Got a nose bleed over it. Of course she zipped the panties up. I didn’t expect that. So each day I’d get an update. She tell me she was leaving me in nineteen, eighteen, seventeen days, and so on, I’d bawl like a baby, and she’d laugh in my face. Millions of gay men can’t be WRONG! Finally I snapped, and pitched her out the front door, regretting it almost immediately as she laughed at me through my own teeth, the ones I’d bought her, stripped my house of everything including the Christmas Tree, took the dog and left.
So, there I was single. I was totally lost. I was never cool, but even less cool without any balls, yeah, she took those too. I moped around the house for about two months. Considered suicide, but Charsha took my gun. She left the pet chicken, Henrietta for some morbid reason, and I’d cry on the bird’s shoulder every night. I’d talk to Henrietta, she’d say, “Buck buck,” and shit on the floor. Hey, it’s Texas, ok?
As luck would have it I met Sandra. Sandra was from the same neighborhood, and by that I mean literally born a block away. She had her own teeth, and could cook. We hooked up. Unfortunately I was seeing Brenda at the same time. Well, Brenda ran away from home, HEY, she was almost of age, and came over, hence Sandra and I were a thing of the past, but she DID leave her blue jeans as a reminder.
Like I said, Brenda wasn’t exactly street legal, but it was Texas, and Mexico was just around the corner so . . . We took off to Mexico and got married. I think I’d divorced Charsha by this time, no, I’m sure of it because she married one of the guys she was seeing when we were married. I called Joe Barron, my lawyer and told him what I’d done, and he said he could cut me a deal. With taking an underage girl across an international border, changing my citizenship, and getting married, if I’d turn myself in he could probably fix it to where I’d could be buried somewhere that they wouldn’t desecrate my grave. I took the deal.
I didn’t understand why Brenda’s father didn’t kill me, indeed fronted a Texas marriage, but seven years later I saw it clearly. Now, I’m not going to run Brenda down because she died, leaving me two sons, but I will say that during this time I partnered up with Ted, we went in with his grandfather on a trailer park (hey, it’s Texas) and after brief instructions from Ted on various ways to collect rent in a white trash trailer park we screwed everything that didn’t have a husband on top of it. To say my marriage was strained would be putting it lightly. Enter Mary!
Mary was a whore. What’s more, she was a New York whore, and that’s about the whoriest whore you can get. Still, she had her ways. I was in love! God DAMN was I in love. I was plumb stupid I was so in love. Plane trip to New York, eight hundred dollar phone bills, you name it. I decided to go see her in New York. Brenda waited, packed my bags, saw me off at the airport, and then left the SHIT out of me! Bye bye wife, bye bye kids, bye bye dog.
Now I was upset, but not at losing Brenda. Upon returning to Texas, Mary hooked up with some guy from Long Island and put the wood to me too. I drove my truck as far into the woods as I could, walked about a mile, and sat down to die. I might need to see a doctor about that part of my personality, but anyway, after an hour or so, I went back to town, moved into a double wide (hey, it’s Texas,) and shacked up with three dancers, or rather, three dancers and a short fat dyke who was madly in love with all three. It was then I began to believe in polygamy.
I must say we had a beautiful relationship(s). They weren’t the least bit jealous so long as the rent was paid, there was food in the fridge and the air conditioner was forever on. My only problem was that Brenda slammed me with child support, and Judge Black didn’t see eye to eye with my lifestyle. When I told him I could barely afford a place to live he assured me that the following Monday I’d have three hundred dollars or he would find me a place to live. I really didn’t like his tone so I split for Mexico.
Eventually I had Joe strike me a deal so I could pay support weekly. As luck would have it my ex, Brenda, fell on hard times and my sons came to live with me. As luck would have it I was allowed to gain custody, BUT I had to be married, so, I married Barbara, an old barfly, (hey, it’s Texas.) Barbara wasn’t too bad. She took care of the boys, and cooked quite well. She had this jailhouse tattoo of an octopus with its tentacles extending up her inner arms and down her inner thighs. I decided to become celebrate. This was also the time I picked up my drinking habit that I nourish to this day.
After two years I met Pam. We were roughly the same age, had two boys each, she liked to cook, and we became friends. Oh, I ran Barbara down the road. I was getting schooled at this by now and we both took it well. She was happy to be rid of my boys, and I was happy for her to move on.
Pam was my last. We raised our boys, had careers, bought houses, wrote books, lived on a golf course, two actually, and she left me in 2010. Hey, it’s Texas!
Once Upon A Trailer Park Chapter 5
Once upon a time I bought part interest in a trailer park in Texas. Now, if that’s not a lead in to a joke, I’m not a white boy from Austin! Somewhere along the lines of, “Two Jews walked into a bar.” In 1979 I had been working at Central Texas College for three years. I’d done good. Worked my way up to Plant Management, where I set up the first computerized inventory system the college ever had. System 2000! My job was to identify, and categorize all items the college owned from chairs down to the lifelike mannequin in the nursing school that was used to teach nursing students about the birthing process. Oh, it WAS lifelike, friends and neighbors. So lifelike that one of my jobs was to go and give it a douche when the frat boys slipped in and partied with it. Seeing what it was designed to teach, it had this look of perpetual pain on its face, legs up in the stirrups, which I supposed enhanced the event. Now, where was I? Oh yeah, a Texas trailer park.
I’d like to say for all the things you’ve ever heard about Texas Trailer Trash, well, they’re all true. I’d become involved with this particular park doing bookkeeping Work on the side for Mr Dorrill. I’d been inducted into the Outstanding Young Men Of The Year, and Mr Dorrill read about it in the papers so he hired me to cook his books, and screw his in laws out of their share of the park. He’d screwed the city out of the land it sat on some years before when he served as the city tax comptroller. But, that’s the kinds of things you do when you’re the most interesting man in the world. I might add that Mr Dorrill taught me all I know about business.
The park was top shelf. No, I’m not kidding. There was no propane, free cable and water for tenants, and a swimming pool with a clubhouse. Mr Dorrill had employed a cost saving measure during the construction of the place. He dug one ditch, and put gas, water, and sewer lines in the same dig. Back in them days the sewer was something called terra-cotta, which was kinda like baked clay invented by the Romans, and the water lines were galvanized metal with an ample supply of lead for the joints. This assured that many of the tenants had this yellow glow about them. The gas lines leaked so bad that when the creek flooded the water would bubble giving the park the appearance of a thirteen acre 7UP! We never had any problem with the city because Mr Dorrill had been in local politics for a LONG time, and had all the city fathers most intimate secrets in a safe deposit box down at the bank, and the good public servants didn’t mind a few shortcuts in park operation so long as those skeletons remained in the closet.
The old man installed me as the office manager. His grandson, my writing partner, Ted, was the comptroller. I’d do the numbers, and Ted made sure they never saw the light of day. Now, I was a bookkeeping nerd, and Ted, well, he was not! By the time I arrived on the scene Ted had Globe Mobile City pretty well scoped out. I burned the midnight oil trying to make the numbers add up, and Ted did his best to educate me that the numbers were not SUPPOSED to add up! The old man had designed it that way.
I said I’d bought interest in the park, and I did, but there was some “phinangaling.” Don’t check my spelling on that, it’s a Texas Word. The definition thereof is, “Systemic screwing of your inlaws out of their interest in a trailer park.” Under the corporate by-laws of Globe Mobile City, only members of the Dorrill and Parten Family could own any part of the business or property included. I couldn’t own any of that. Well, the old man set up “Globe Management Associates,” and independent management company, and being the lifetime CEO of Globe Mobile City, he hired Globe Management Associates (Mr Dorrill, Ted, and Me) to take over all operations of the park! Ever see the movie “Casino?” Great background study for this article.
Mr Dorrill had become a widower some years before, and married one Willie Mae Parten. She was a fairly respectable Texas lady. Had accumulated some wealth after her husband passed away. She invented a flower, the “WillieMina.” Switched a cow to the slaughter house in Waco, and used the money to build security for her family. The Partens had kids who all married East Texas white trash. See, Texas is really five states. West, The Valley, Central (where I live), North, but, if you wanna see a Texan look down, and spit on the ground just say, “East Texas!” There’s things out there in them woods that’d make a strong man die with fright! These folks were NOT good, upstanding Americans.
So, the old man talked these people into coming in with him in this trailer park venture, and he’d been robbing them ever since! Hadn’t paid them in ten years (they don’t teach math in East Texas.) THAT’S what he needed ME for! After all that time, the family was getting suspicious. Didn’t tell you these people were quick. I sat in an AirStream RV for MONTHS, balancing the books for the last ten years so the old man could do a “State of The Trailer Park” to this bunch of hillbillies during a board meeting. When the great day came, Mr Dorrill presented them with a bill of one hundred and fifty two thousand dollars, announced that he was hiring Globe Management Associates to run the park, and walked out of the room, leaving them holding the bill, and drooling on their shirts!
In a word, the Partens were incensed! Their Patriarch, WA, just couldn’t get his mind around the numbers, which was understandable, because under the watchful eye of the old man I’d cooked those books to very well done. So, WA formed his own independent company, and put his son in law, James, in charge with his brother’s son in law, Jimbo (yeah, that’s his real name) as the maintenance man. They only had one problem. They had nineteen trailers out of one hundred and four, and Globe Management had a lock on the park. You can’t just pack up nineteen trailers and go! In short order James and Jimbo were having to sell copper wire just to buy beer and cigarettes!
Remember I told you Ted was trying to educate me about the real purpose of Globe Mobile City? Well, the very reason the final accounting at that catastrophic board meeting was so skewed was the old man had designed the park itself to perpetually lose money, while the owners of the trailers raked in the profit from rents. What the inlaw investors didn’t see was after the ten year accumulation of debt, the money they owed to the parent corporation far outweighed any hope on any return for investment after ten years. They assumed the money owed the company would just go away. Not so! That was the old man’s money. He STOLE it!
The song remained the same. WAP International (WA’s company) could play house all it wanted, but we still owned the bank. WA was a Texas school teacher. He “cypered” with a pencil, and a Big Chief tablet. The old man just bought a computer. Big one. It was called a “personal computer,” but back in 1979 it was the size of a desk. I couldn’t make it work so I called the company in New York, but one Mary Ellen got in touch with a friend of hers in New Mexico named Bill, and he sent me a book on BASIC, a programming code. Remember that I’d designed the college system? Well, that was on an IBM mainframe computer, and I’d gone to the college library, checked out a book, and learned Fortran. I could figure out BASIC!
I actually set up an accounting, and work order application that was great. Even flew to New York to pick up a third floppy drive, a real one, eight inch, back when floppy disks really flopped, and in no time at all Globe Management Associates moved into the computer age! All accounts receivable and payable, and work orders were accounted for automatically, with the tenants getting a bill in their mailbox every month. A modern system coded into the computer by myself, under the accounting principles of Mr Dorrill. Mr Dorrill, Ted and I laughed all the way to the bank, and WA was very confused. There was a pain in Grog’s head he could not understand! Under Ted’s creative accounting, I even included a subroutine that accounted for the unique way Army wives paid the rent when their husbands were in the field.
Before his death, the old man broke WAP International, and Jimbo and James wound up in prison. I went on to form Rent Rangers, bought three mansions, and Ted became a psychologist with more degrees than a thermometer! We always maintained our business relationship, that’s why when we showed up in Utah to fight the CPS there was a pain in THEIR head they could not understand!
Weird Wilbur Rides Again Chapter 6
Weird Wilbur Rides Again was an album I put out in Nashville back in ’93. It was a real set. Real studio, real studio cats, real tuna fish sandwiches and beer. The session was “on the house.” I didn’t have no money, but hell, nobody else did either so I didn’t hold any special honors. The Grand Ol’ Opry didn’t pay much, and was referred to on Music Square as the ”Grand Ol Orgasm!”
I’d been doing lounge shows at Pennington’s, across from the Opry on Friday and Saturday nights. You didn’t get paid for that. You had to come up with “concession.” That’s where you set up a table and sell your records to the crowd. I didn’t really have any records worth a hoot, quality wise. Only the “Anthem” and if that football player ever heard MY anthem he’d REALLY take a knee. Back then Texans thought a racist was someone who got into NASCAR, but I digress.
Pennington’s was a trip. It was a moderate sized bar. Maybe fifty people. The upside was people who played the Opry would filter over after the show, and if you were playing you’d have a chance to expose your wares to some really “happening”people. Soon I was known around Music Square. Now, I wasn’t “somebody,” but my clumsy attempts at recording began to pop up on tour busses. I’d dragged a couple cassette efforts up from Austin I’d done at Lone Star Studios that weren’t much. Made for Texans in pickups with no air conditioner.
I had to learn the ins and outs of Nashville. I even had a manager, Michael. Of all the people I met there, Michael was my mentor. I was very wet behind the ears. He taught me “presence.” With a lounge filled with tourists, worn out from taking the kids around Opry Land in the sun all day, if you were the show in the lounge you simply MUST be a star! Once, when Mike had to fill in for one of his Opry contacts, he told me that I had to carry the whole show at Pennington’s. Normally I’d do a set or two, and Mike would carry the load with standards such as “MargaritaVille.” The thought of doing a four hour gig was, to put it lightly, a bit perturbing! Mike told me Hank never died, he does shows all over Nashville every weekend. I did a standard country and western show, and the public received it well.
Mike taught me about Nashville etiquette too. One time the venue was filled with college cheerleaders in town for some kind of national “jump off.” Yeah, yeah, yeah, they were drinking and most likely a few of them were under twenty-one. And, they were easy on the eye, if you get my drift. So anyway, during a break I went to the bar for a beer and two of these kids homed in on me. They wanted to know if I was in the music business? Well DUH! Did I know where a real studio was? I LIVED in one. Each morning I had to write, record, duplicate several cassettes, and hand carry them to various record companies around Music Square. People trying to shoot material at Nashville from OUTSIDE don’t get that. If you mailed a cassette, without local representation, the girl who checks the mail would just throw it away. Wouldn’t even open the envelope! You had to BE there, drink their coffee, eat their donuts, (which you REALLY needed) give your stuff to her, and it would get a listen. Wouldn’t get recorded. There’s about a one in one hundred chance of that, but they’d listen. That’s why you had to do it every day. All novices dream of crafting that one monster hit. Nashville isn’t interested in that. They want to see if you can do it every day! Can you do it on command? Does it “cook?” Mike’s training for me was to take one of my songs, copy each line separately on sheets of paper, and I had to come up with sixteen or so new songs that he’d do the came thing with. I also had to take a pencil and a Big Chief tablet and write the words to a hit song so I’d know what it “felt like” for a hit to come off a pencil. I “cooked” over three thousand songs using the very same formula I’m using to write this very article you are reading right now. Verse, verse, chorus, lead, verse, chorus and out! Don’t forget the “hook.” In an article they call it a “focus” word. That simply means the part that sticks in your head. Now, where was I? Oh yeah, the two chicks.
So, there I am with these two girls, starry-eyed, and half drunk, wanting to see a real studio after the show. I ain’t even gonna lie to you. By this time I’d forgotten all about Jesus, family and mom’s apple pie. They were in town for the ”Jump Off, ” and I felt it my civic duty to give them something to Jump ON, ” and take a memory back to the old Alma Mater! To this day when I give speeches in Austin, and UT co-eds talk with me I remember the song, ”Don’t Stand So Close To Me.” Before I began my next set I told Mike that these young ladies would like to accompany us back to Music Square and party. He cast his eyes toward a rather masculine woman stirring at a table in the corner. She had a freaking CREW CUT! “See that woman, Bill?” I nodded. “Well, that’s a Bull Dyke, and her job is to make sure those two cheerleaders get safely back to their room tonight. I’m not getting my ass whipped in the elevator!”
At some point Mike decided I needed a real concession. Something state of the art, on CD, not cassette, that people to buy for around ten bucks. Now my stuff was different. You had to balance plates on a stick to even get the term “Gosh Darn” past Roy Acuff and achieve distribution. I cussed every breath! If I couldn’t figure it out, I was about to press up a bunch of skeet targets. Without going through the long, boring tale, Steve Jobs fixed all that. Oh, and Roy died.
So, we all met on Good Friday, 1993 at Berry Hill Studios just outside of Nashville. I had HUNDREDS of gag songs. Some good, some not so good, but they all “cooked!” Jackie’s dad, John set the whole thing up and little three year old Jackie sat on my lap through a lot of sets. When she was twenty-one she remastered the tracks, achieved copyright, and you can buy the album on iTunes today thanks to her. CPS said she was mentally challenged. Yeah, RIGHT!
We recorded Friday and Saturday. Recording twelve tracks is no nine to five kinda deal. It starts just before “can see,” and goes just past “can’t see.”Then you go and do your regular show at Pennington’s, return, crash on a studio couch, get up the next day, and do it all over again! The only thing I missed that weekend was my cassette deliveries to Music Square.
On Sunday you “mix.” We mixed on Easter, which added a special factor of blasphemy to the whole thing. The final mix only took eighteen years. You’re dealing originally with a recording tape, two inches wide, with thirty-two individual tracks on it. Name dropping is the unpardonable sin in Nashville, so I won’t do it, but you’d be amazed who helped on those tracks named, “You’d Better Not Tell Anyone I Was Here!”
The album was called “Weird Wilbur Rides Again.” You can purchase it today on iTunes, and God knows where else. I was actually formally published, and I think on iTunes alone there are about five knock offs. I won’t say how much money it made, uh, makes, but I will say the IRS hates me because none of my copyrights are in my name. I kept up with all this with little food, sleep, drunk, and certainly no company of cheerleaders. There! Now you have the formula to be a star. You don’t have to be crazy to try that, but it sure helps!