The stone is silent, not mute. It was buried deep within my being, awaiting it´s truth to be heard and seen. I am ROCK solid. The one some cast away at sea or try to hide. I carry Truth. Truth that is gritty makes some turn away. Are you strong enough to stay?
So this very good looking and quick witted young man realized early on he could manipulate others and he was persuasive as, well, fuck. He got money easily from others and they didn’t get it back. He did everything fast, for reasons that helped create his image such as he joined the high school football team just to get a photo in the uniform and maybe played one game and quit. Yet, he was a football star in his mind. He also told people about his good ole University of Tennessee days, even though there weren´t any, not really. Maybe a few, but he had bigger things to do. Make money and make it fast. The young woman was still so convinced he was all she would ever be worthy of and sadly followed him from job to job; in many ways he was like his carpenter father yet without a viable skill. They shared crushing blue eyes, red freckled skin, and eventually alcoholism. His father, despite his failures was not a manipulator. The boy discovered that lieing was so amazing and easy, why bother with the truth. This would become the skill that betrayed not only others, but eventually his own soul. Some say he was made this way as his mother was so doting on him. He received much attention from her and praise. It was not equal between his sister and the mother’s expressed adoration. Narcissism or born sociopath? At some point it stops mattering when you break the law, con others, (even the ones who love you), and that he did, often. With each “catch” and “release” he became more clever. Or did he? Next, I will tell you all about Sergeant Bilko.
Before the handsome boy and his mixed up tales and impulsive adventures was a young woman from a tiny family farm in rural Georgia. She loved to sing and to be loved. She loved to laugh and cry happy tears. She met a handsome man whom she married and while he was away in the army she and her son had an apartment and she sewed, baked hams and cornbread and had hope. The kind of hope we all have when young, the kind that feels like the end of life and the present are so far apart that you are truly shocked when something sad or bad happens. She took the boy on her hip and hung out laundry in the fresh southern sun and bought root beer and coca-cola in glass bottles. She was happy and independent now, not needing to ask for anything so she helped her sisters and brothers near by. She wasn’t the oldest but the most loved by all. Her heart was big and she always had room for more friends to laugh with and more people to assist in the best way that she could.
Just before I was born the young man made a decision to take a job selling advertising for a newspaper far from the lovely lady’s hometown. It was puffed up to her big time, like a stuffed turkey, a job of a life time kinda thing. She was scared as I was about to appear. When she got there he’d found them a small apartment and he’d invited his boss or a higher ranked employee and his wife to dinner. During this dinner he was telling lots of puffed up turkey stories and got his own lies crossed, which apparently happened often. The lady was aware that the guests were on to him. He had lied about his age and some previous employers. It ended soon with him losing his job and the two being stuck in Baltimore; they had to stay until my very chaotic entrance to the world. Why chaotic? She had just turned 19, had no family, was scared and had no friends. He was sure I was a boy and I was to be named Christian. I was not a boy. He returned all the blue genderized clothing and returned with pink. I hate pink, but nobody dresses babies in all black now do they?
No money, no job and a newborn wee me, they packed up and drove all the way back to live with the now fraudulent, broke and manic young man’s mother in Nashville. YeeFuckin’haw!
It was embarrassing for the lovely lady who was honest to the core. She took a job at an insurance company and for some time he sold vacuum cleaners door to door. No job lasted more than a month or two. My maternal Grandmother watched me by day. so they could work. He drove the lady to work and picked her up each evening in their old car, until one night he didn’t. The beautiful, sad, strong woman waited. He did not come. Person after person left the building, some offering her a ride. He’ll come she had thought. He always had. But he didn’t, and it was cold and she didn’t have money to take a bus. Finally she called her older brother who was home from Vietnam. He came to get her and drove her to get me from my Grandma then went back to the paternal grandmother’s with me. She expected a flat tire, a car accident and maybe worse, was he hurt?
The young man’s mother had a sad and strange look on her face. My mother was now tired, hungry and bewildered with a baby. His mother said he had left and handed her an envelope to open. It read that he and a good friend of his from high school had gone to Mexico and he was in love with someone else. Like that he was gone. “In Love”. In Mexico. He was on a manic run again. Nobody diagnosed guys like him back then properly, he was and is what he is, a fool’s fool. Now, with a baby, no vehicle and feeling uncomfortable staying with the fool’s mother she went to sleep on the sofa of her own mother’s who lived temporarily in subsidized housing and where guests, even family, were not allowed to stay.
Mexico. The asshole was in Mexico. Shit.
The beautiful and ever so lovely young woman was hoping for college and encouraged the talented teller of falsities to study also. He never completed a class, well, maybe one but it’s hard to know. He told so many tales that soon she found herself entwined, like a poison ivy spewing blisters on a red hot summer’s day. She thought he lied to others, that she was his confidant and she tried to help him despite her burns.
So the beautiful girl with a reputation of kindness and generosity was entering a classroom in a below ground level stairway located outside the entrance. No one was around. Maybe she was tardy. Regardless, there appeared the boy, whom she had said no to many times and he grabbed her arm and said, “come with me”. She said no, that she had a class and he persisted. She was not one to make a scene and was afraid. He pulled her across an empty lot to the public housing where he lived. His mother was at work and his little sister in school. The beautiful girl struggled and yelled NO and STOP loud enough that a neighbor heard her and looked out and saw him forcing her into his mother’s apartment. The girl was forced to have sex. She didn’t want to and the boy said, “,Now no one will ever want you. You are ruined. You are mine”. Then the boy and girl heard the door open downstairs, it was his mother. He dressed quickly and ran downstairs. His mother said the neighbor called her at work. She asked if it was the beautiful girl who had broken up with him and he said no. He said it was nobody special, he said she was embarrassed and if his mother stepped outside she would go out the back door. The mother obliged but was not happy. The girl crying, dressed and ran back to school never telling anyone anything. She felt dirty, bad, ugly, worthless and no longer like she could have a better life.
The boy possessed her, he lied and made up tales so big that she soon stopped trying to care. She wanted to go to college and had a partial scholarship. His plans decided her fate always. He convinced her to marry him and they drove to a state that would hitch them up. She tried to convince herself it would get better, he promised the world to her and then she got pregnant.
The boy’s parents divorced and his mother struggled to keep her job and her two children fed. She wasn’t neglectful but unable to afford what many other families had. She had come from poverty herself and had been raised on a farm in rural Georgia.
The beautiful girl also came from a different sort of poverty, despite her father owning boarding houses and a local market she lacked the type of love that a family generally is thought to generate. Her father was a troubled man and her mother worked in the store serving customers. The girl shared a room with 5 siblings in the back of the store and felt ashamed. Yet, she took on more work in other stores, even in a doll hospital. She enjoyed making her world more pleasant. Often she brought the boyfriend who was often hungry back to the store and made him grilled cheese sandwiches.
The boy told lots of big stories to his friends at school, and those stories grew bigger than life and the lovely, honest and hardworking girl broke up with him.
She had been warned that she would lose her position as a cashier at her job she went to after school and on weekends. Why? Because the boy stood watch over her, hung around the store and it made her and her boss uncomfortable. Despite moving forward after breaking up with the boy, he refused to leave her alone.
Before me there was a beautiful teenage girl; she was classically attractive with dark brown eyes and a smile that was there for most everyone in her social life. She had a boyfriend, a handsome blue eyed dreamer. They dated in the late 50’s and early 60’s.
He lived in the public housing near the high school the pair attended. He had a little sister and his mother was working as a nurse. His father was a heavy drinker and moved the family from place to place, school to school taking odd jobs such as carpentry. The boy at an early age was verbally abusive to his sister and had a tendency to lie. This behaviour grew and grew and soon his truth and lies were one.