Monday, August 21, 2006

Swappin' Stories, Sharing Feelings, Being Lovey Dovey And All That...

So this is just a picture of me and Mum and Sis and a few friends. This is a beach somewhere near where Alfred Hitchcock filmed "The Birds" and that John Travolta film where he is super smart because he has a brain tumor was filmed, and not too far from where "American Graffiti" was filmed and scenes from "Peggy Sue Gets Married"... but I've digressed much more than I've progressed in what I had in mind...

When I started this blog, I envisioned a spot where stories got swapped and people shared their common humanity by demonstrating that we are all on the same globe together, sink or swim. I believe that stories interlink us and are common to all of us. I believe everybody has at least one good tale in them, if not more. I believe that religion, in all of its forms, is nothing more than stories meant to create a bond between groups of people, and that by "we" using this 'technique" on a global scale, could do nothing less than ease our minds about life on a shrinking planet.

So this is just a picture of Mum and Sis and several of my friends. I'm the one in the middle, with the hairy six-pack (long since punctured and spilled into the gullet), and the chicken legs. I'm guessing this was about nine years ago.

Just a picture of Mum and Sis and my friends? Well, not really.

This picture is so full of stories it'd make your head pop just trying to sort them all into categories. I could glance at this picture once an hour and recall things that I would find interesting to hear, if I had not already heard them, and do this for days and days.

Stories happen to all of us. They happen everyday. The trick is in recognizing them for what they are.

I've spent an adult lifetime sitting on cement floors for lunch with a bunch of hard working (mostly) guys swapping stories. I'll wolf down a poorly put together sandwich and then join in on the comaraderie that developes between folks who've had similar circumstances occur to them in life. Stories lead to stories. The commonality amongst people is amazing, when you consider the odds.

Now I have to admit, I've done a bit more in my life than some people. I inherited a large chunk of PDL from my father (see this-- ) and an openness and what I prefer to think of as an "attractiveness" (with a meaning like a butterfly bush or a shiny nickle in the street), from my Mum. In other words, I've been blessed with an honest and compelling face and disposition that people want to pick up and put in their pocket or just plain stick their noses in and sniff.

And things just happen to me.

I have a British friend I call Young Paul, who always introduces me to new people the same way. "This is my friend Scotty. Things happen to him".

And indeed he would be very right, there.

OK. So looking at this picture, the first thing that strikes me enough to want to share, is that I always tell people on the internet that I'm big. Well, I don't look that big in this picture and I haven't grown more than twenty five pounds since this was taken, so what's up with that?

Well, everyone IN this picture is big. From the left. Old Paul. 6-2 plus. Mum. 5-9 plus. Eric (I call him Baby Huey) 6-4. Me. 6-4 in flip flops. Sandy (my Sis) 5-10. Jamal 6-4, and monstrous legs.

And then the stories start pinging off my brain like D-day ricochets off a beach in Normandy (how's THAT for an analogy!)

From the left. Old Paul invented a piece of plastic made into a box that fits beween your washer and your dryer and holds your laundry soap and your dryer sheets, and other stuff. He flew to some eastern bloc country and had the molds made. He contracted with a company in LA to manufacture and ship them. He runs his company in a converted barn on a heavily treed hillside in a small neighborhood surrounded by enormous redwoods. The unit is six inches wide, and his slogan is "Six Inches Is All You Need".

I sure hope so, Paul.

My Mum has a wonderful singing voice and a great memory for lyrics. As a nurse, she would learn the favorite song of her patients and sing this to them while she did her rounds to soothe them. Many a time, she was in the room singing to someone who was in the process of dying. Now, if I'm gonna go, that would be the way for me. I want to slowly black out of this world while listening to an angelic voice singing "Hey hey mama, I like the way you move, gonna make you sweat, gonna make you groove..."

Eric (Baby Huey) is half Indian and Half Jewish. In the late sixties and early seventies, he ran a center for Native Americans in Sonoma County and found himself involved with the whole Patty Hearst, SLA thing. You see, the SLA demanded a food give-away and Baby Huey's organization was one on the list. Well, the FBI wanted to know what sort of people were on the beneficiary list and was calling them in to interview them. Baby Huey, who at the time had butt length hair and wore a frilly (rhymes with silly) suede Daniel Boone sort of a jacket, decided to drop acid and head down to San Francisco to answer a few "questions". When he got there, he was as high as a guy on acid and was invited into a room where over THIRTY men in suits, all FBI hardballers, sat at a long table ready to interview him.

"Nuh uh!" he said, as he ran out of the room, down the stairs, across San Francisco itself, and across the Golden Gate Bridge and then called his young wife from Marin County where she drove to pick him up.

When the Indian group took over Alcatraz, Eric was intertwined in that as well.

But that is for another day.

The guy in the middle is me. I'll get to him some more, I am sure.

My sister, Sandy used to race endurance horses up and down steep mountains for fifty or a hundred miles. She was quite good at it until her spine started to rattle apart like tall people's spines tend to do. She once made me get on my hands and knees and kiss the dirty floor where her dog slept. She was mouthing off to me at her house one day, and I picked her up onto my shoulder and started spanking her, thinking this was a good way to get even with what she was saying. She slipped one of her horse hugging thighs over my head and began to reshape my cranium. Then she started to sink her teeth deeply into my butt. I had two choices. Bash her head agianst her refigerator, or capitulate.

I capitulated.

Jamal is last but not least. He is the illegitimate grandson of Archie Moore, the heavy weight champion and the guy who was in Foreman's corner when Ali beat him in Zaire. His mother is a white woman who makes jewelry, and he has a brother who won a dance competion in California that sent him to New York, only he had to go as Jamal because he borrowed Jamal's ID to enter the competition, as he was too young.

Jama and my sister were an item for many years, despite the big age difference. Jamal once tried to cook a can of beans on a fire while camping in Yosemite with Sandy. Only trouble was, he forgot to open up the can. The can EXPLODED over everything they owned. The bears that came to help clean up the mess is a tale for another day...

Now, what's in your wallet? Posted by Picasa


carol said...

I'd like another Eric story,please.I know you want to receive our stories in return but my mind goes blank when I read yours; utterly incapable of recalling anything but the most bovinely commonplace anecdotes.Apart from the childbearing ones for which, really, you had to be there. Anyway,will keep thinking. Please don't stop just because you're doing all the work!

Scott from Oregon said...

Hi Carol. You know, I think the night of a child's birth--any child-- is an amazing story. Especially from the perspective of the victim... er... uh... woman.

I could never top a story like that in a million years.

Hope your vacation ended well.

Eric-- Baby Huey-- dated the mother of Van Morrison's daughter once (and had to jump thru the back window in his undies) and once bought Janis Joplin some booze in a seven eleven late at night... His early days were pretty amazing.

Anonymous said...

I thought you stories about your Mum were heartwarming :) And you are quite handsome yourself. The pic of your Mum, well she's quite beautiful. I saved your blog to favorites so I can read it in its entirety. Have a safe later.
Donna 5 Star Hot or Not member :)

Scott from Oregon said...

Hi Donna. I didn't see you sneak in the back. I'd LOVE for you to look in my archives.