Sunday, April 18, 2010

Salvation Diary 27

"Salvation" artist Amanda Milke

April 28 Sunday Day 228

I had Wolf wake me at 6:30. No use waking up at 4:00, as there were no good movies on, and I probably wouldn't get up that early anyway.
I was able to do a little writing before chapel. Good thing too, because I passed out afterwards. I slept for most of the afternoon.
I felt lonely and depressed today for some reason. I let little things depress me, like not having a car, or any money, or in fact a job. I thought about how hard it's going to be to start all over again.
I felt lonely because my family lives so far away, and I don't have anyone around who's close enough to care about what might be happening to me one way or the other.
I felt depressed because I don't have a girlfriend, someone I can share life with and care about.
When I have a girlfriend, I don't want one.
And when I don't, I do.
Very depressing.
If I were not living here I'd probably relapse on a day like today. Hopefully by now if I were living on my own I'd have enough sense to get to an A.A. meeting.
Too much time on my hands and no desire to get up and do anything.
What a way to feel on my big day off.
Since I do live here and didn't feel like drinking, and didn't feel like going to an A.A. meeting (relapse warning sign), I watched "Star Trek, the Next Generation," instead. A hearty substitute. It went a long way in cheering me up. An excellent new episode in which Q revisits the Enterprise, and sends the crew to his version of Sherwood Forest.
Then I read, and smoked cigarettes, and read some more, and watched "Married with Children," then read some more. I read about life in America after a limited nuclear attack. The book was "Warday," be Whitley Strieber and Jim Somebody. Wishing the day to end I went to sleep.

April 29 Monday Day 229

I got up in time to be dressed and ready to go out before lunch (cheeseburgers). I then headed for the good old bus stop and caught a ride to Pasadena City College, where I zipped right into the administration building and handed in my admissions application. A very nice lady took my application and asked if I had brought my school transcripts. I told her that I had not, and that I would need to get them. She gave me a special, secret form to help me do that. I needed to send this form to my last school, Pierce College, in Woodland Hills, and they would send my records directly to PCC. The nice lady also told me to pick a date for the school orientation meeting, so I could get orientated. I choose the 4th of June, at 2:30 in the afternoon, because it interfered least with my work schedule. She also made a registration appointment for me for August 23rd.
Then I was off like a shot.
I stopped by the bookstore once again to see if there were any Fall schedules available. No luck there.
And I made it back to the residence in time to grab my blanket and hit the park for an hour of afternoon sun.
I think that is what was depressing me yesterday. It's too damn sunny around here!
After being hit up a few times for spare change I made my way back to the residence, worked out, and got ready for dinner (meat loaf).
I read from Chronicles II while relaxing on my bed. When I couldn't take anymore, I went to the lobby to write.
I had not smoked up till this point in the day. I had done this in preparation for my Sixth Step, and in observance of Japan's Greenery Day. But one of the men who was just about to check out of the program, came and sat nearby and began to harass me. He insisted I provide him with some kind of documentation, proof of his residency or something, which I could not give to him. He should have been asking Ed Reitz, or Mr. Vasquez. I told him this and he got all mad, calling me some pretty descriptive names and inviting me outside. By this time I was a little mad as well, and not only because of his actions, I was already tense from nicotine withdrawal. I was seriously considering taking the guy up on his offer, smashing his stupid little face in and teaching him some manners.
The rock band Mott the Hoople wrote a song about just this type of situation. I went like this: "Violence, violence, it's the only thing that will make you see sense."
But I thought better of it. Almost always anything is better than violence. If we got into it I would probably get thrown out of here, or at least lose my job. The other guy was leaving anyway and had nothing to lose. So I swallowed my anger, a bitter pill.
But I did go and buy some cigarettes.
I guess God didn't want me to quit smoking today (major, but typical cop out).
I decided the best course of action was to isolate for the rest of the evening. I'd be a lot safer that way.
I watched part of "The Astronomers." This episode involved searching for clues to the origen of the universe. The Big Bang, and all that. There are certain questions astronomers have about the formations of galaxies. Huge lumps of localized star systems, gas, and dust formed in what was believed to have been a very smooth and uniform dispersion of matter and energy directly following the event known as the Big Bang. Various theories have been put forward to explain the discrepancy by physicists such as Stephen Hawking. One of them may be correct, maybe not. Experimentation, observation, theoretical calculation, and time will tell.
A beautiful map of the dispersion of the galaxies throughout the universe was shown. The Great Wall it is called, the largest known structure. When one realizes, or attempts to realize and picture the magnitude and size of these intricate lattice conglomerations and the vast empty spaces in between, one can begin to appreciate the meaning of the word Humility.
I read for a while, then went to sleep soon after. I dreamt of floating through the void.

April 30 Tuesday Day 230

I woke up in a B17 Flying Fortress, busy dropping bombs on the hapless Japanese fleet.
At least that's what they were doing in the 4:00AM movie I woke to.
A worthy endeavor, I suppose.
I made it to work on time this morning. Did some writing, handed out bus tickets, walked around and looked at things. The usual stuff.
Michael Green was sent back from the warehouse and told to sit in the lobby until ten o'clock, until the powers that be could figure out what to do with him. He had gotten his supervisor, Charles Parsons, all mad at him.
Michael is a small, shinny black person, who wishes to become a model. He can be very independent and stubborn at times, which is what got him into this jam. He and Parsons could not reconcile, so Ernie Sens eventually offered him a choice of either working in the residence or leaving the program.
He left the program. Had his mother pick him up, and that was that.
I wish him well. Nice fellow actually, lots of spunk.
The ADx man came to refix the machine. He brought a cohort with him this time. Maybe the two of them can patch it up. I hope so as we're getting a goodly back load of urine here.
I got off work at 2:35 (Robert was late again), and tried to take a nap, but couldn't quite drift off.
I read until 5:30, then went down to the lobby to check out what Jill was wearing tonight, which is where I'm at right now. It's 5:53:30PM real time, and Jill has not yet arrived for her 5:45 group. I will wait a while longer.
Here she comes! Intensely beautiful, as always.
She walked through the door at 5:56, wearing a flowing ankle length black dress, with a smart gray business coat. Everything she has on goes extremely well together, setting off her deep, luscious eyes. I watched as she was slowly introduced to someone, a visitor, who was conducting a survey and wished to sit in on her group. She acquiesced.
She did an exemplary job of not noticing I was there. Her back is turned to me as she leaned on my front desk, talking to the elderly survey taker. I noticed that she was wearing black shoes, which accentuated her hair, which a little darker tonight than usual.
As usual different men gathered around her, flock is more like it. They were mainly the guys who were in her group wanting to know when she was going to get on with it.
She walked toward the small dinning room, but was waylaid by Wilford Maze. Wilford told her that he did not wish to attend her group tonight. He had something more important to do. He gave her a hard time. Wilford is an ass. She told him that she will talk to him about it later, and demanded that he attend her group as scheduled.
Good for her.
She finally got her group started at 6:06:32.
Well, enough excitement for one night. Now that the high point of my week was over, I believe I'll leave real time and go upstairs and smoke an unauthorized cigarette.
After I finished with that I returned downstairs to the canteen and ate a nice grilled cheese sandwich while talking to Mr. Schimmele about initiation rites held aboard U.S. Navel vessels that pass the equator. Jill came and asked Ed McNicol for something. I was too busy pretending to ignore her to notice what it was she asked for. I kept up the conversation with Schimmele, while keeping a peripheral eye on Jill. She was there a good two, two and a half minutes. We ignored each other beautifully.
What a turn on!
Teasing her by dashing back upstairs, I began reading a James Bond novel (a habit I acquired years ago from my father), and watched an excellent movie on T.V., "The Accused," starring Jodie Foster and Kelly McGillis.
I went to sleep shortly after the movie ended.
Tonight, what was thought to be a meteorite, interacted with the atmosphere above Los Angeles and the fog near the ground, creating a huge flash of blue-green light, causing a sensation throughout the entire city.
Being asleep, I didn't notice.

May 1 Wednesday Day 231

I woke up inside a diesel submarine with Glenn Ford and Ernest Borgnine, drifting around a mine field.
Well, if that don't beat all.
Once at work I learned from Mr. Rockoff that someone had thrown a rock through the thrift store window and made off with as much loot as they could within five minutes. Mostly portable TVs, and VCRs. It was a fairly gutsy heist, considering the store faces Del Mar Blvd., one of the main thorough-fairs in Pasadena running east-west. The burglary occurred sometime between 1:00 and 1:15AM. We know this because Mr. Pandolfi had been wandering around out there at that time, amazingly enough, doing his job. When Wolf discovered the broken window he notified Mr. Vasquez, who had just retired for the evening having finished his shift. Robert wound up spending the rest of the night inside the thrift store, watching the "Late, Late, Late Show," and had in fact also witnessed the Glen Ford/Ernest Borgnine debacle. While he was there he held on to a small hatchet, something he found in the store, just incase the burglars returned.
I met Mr. Borgnine once. When the Universal City branch of Bank of America first opened, he was there, I guess helping them promote the opening. He was wearing his Commander Quinton McHale uniform on from "McHale's Navy," which he was filming at the time (so this would have been some time between 1962 and 1966), and was on his way back to the set when a young boy out on the sidewalk asked him for his autograph.
That was me. I remember him as being very nice.
I've asked like about three people for their autographs in my entire life. Ernest was one. Another was that of a young, promising actor by the name of Peter Duel. I had helped my dad with a delivery and met Mr. Duel outside one of the large, cavernous sound stages that make up the front lot inside Universal Studios. I asked him if he was the guy who had played in the TV show, "Love on a Rooftop," with Judy Carn from "Laugh In." He said that he was. He was also very nice. He was concerned that I might not be able to handle all of the stuff I was carrying. I assured him that I could.
"Of course you can," he said to me.
Peter Duel would later go on to star in the television show, "Alias Smith and Jones," a rip off of the film "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid." It would prove to be a big success for Mr. Duel, and his co-star, Ben Murphy.
Apparently he was not as happy as one would think because he wound up shooting himself in the head.
Misery knows no boundaries.
Doug McClure, at the time an actor on the TV show, "The Virginian," gave me an autographed picture of himself dressed as a cowboy. Today he is in a sitcom about a teenaged half-breed, alien girl living with her mom on Earth.
I believe the police eventually caught those responsible for breaking into our thrift store. Or else they caught somebody who was out thieving that night. Our guy who worked in the TV shop was requested by the police to help identify some stolen property.
After Wolf relieved him at the store, Mr. Vasquez came back and had breakfast, then went to bed. I told him I'd give him some extra canteen cards for his trouble.
He had ran all of the samples the night before, so there was no urine for me. The ADx machine seems to be working all right now. Could use a bit of calibrating though.
So when I wasn't too busy I worked out a little, helped Schimmele move a rather large table from the basement to the chapel in preparation for tonight's big safety meeting, did my laundry, read some of the Bible, and did my Sixth and Seventh Steps.
The Sixth I did before lunch. The Seventh after the Sixth.
The Sixth Step assumes we "Were Entirely Ready to Have God Remove All These Defects of Character." I prepared for this by not smoking this morning, and intending not to smoke for the rest of the day. A cigarette fast. This was intended to be symbolic of being ready to have God, or my conception of God, or my higher power, remove all of my character defects. I also read, and reread, the Sixth, and later the Seventh Steps as outlined in the 12 & 12 (the "Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions").
I felt ready. I felt good. I flipped my decision making coin, which allows me to talk to my higher power, and it told me, "Go for it!"
So after lunch I did the Seventh Step. "Humbly Asked Him to Remove Our Short Comings." This I did by being ready to continue to not smoke, reading and rereading the outline, and reciting the Seventh Step Prayer found in the Big Book.
After I said the prayer I felt very good, which was how I felt for the rest of the day. I let God worry about smoking. He, or She, or Whatever, is much more capable of dealing with it than I am.
Instead of chapel this evening we had a nice safety meeting. We talked about safety. We were all shown a video concerning dangerous chemicals found around the work place, and how to deal with them in a safe manner. Afterwards, as the men filed out they were required to pass by a long table, the very table Schimmele and I had brought up earlier, and sign their name on three different sheets of paper. Ron Collins, Frank Corona, and myself made sure this was done all correctly and succinctly.
I still felt good. Clarence Orion's daughter and I kept giving each other the old eye.
Kathy was here tonight as well. Very cute, very busy, and very serious.
I kept myself busy for the rest of the evening. I tried as best as I could to not to let myself sit and think, which of course can get anyone in the most impossible trouble.
On the whole I was successful. Whenever I found myself thinking I began to read that James Bond book, which immediately ceased all cognizance.
I made my way to my room after work and went straight to bed. I even managed to drop off despite the enormous amounts of coffee I had consumed earlier. I dreamed of swinging on a rope through a dark nothingness, jumping off into...

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