For Weeks I could not Sleep.
Now All I want to do is Sleep.
I am going to check out for a while.
Do not be concerned.
You may or may not hear from me for awhile.
Or ever again.
Please do NOT become a ‘Good Samaritan’ and call 911.
Or email me.
Or try to telephone me.
Or Message me.
If I am dead, I am dead. Nothing to be done.
Let me be Dead in Peace.
If I decide to die,
I will Post a Message First.
This is what a nice, Considerate Person I have Become.
“Commencing Count-Down, Engines On.”
“I’m stepping through the door.”
“Can you Hear Me, Major Tom? Major Tom! There is Something Wrong.”
“I think my Spaceship Knows Which Way To Go.”
Back in 1974 I found myself at Warrior Stadium, Watching the HG Warriors kick the ever’ loving shit outta those Fannindale (dale?, del?) Ladonia! I was born in that town, ’57! Guess I can call their football team what-ever-the-fuck I want… Falcons.
I should have been on the field, but I had opted out my senior year, because I was tired of the whole “Friday Night Lights” shit.
And I was too busy.
Seated on opposite sides of me were Joe Whitley (Who was a math teacher and a rancher and father of my girlfriend, and also my employer) and William Henry—Local Big Boy and World – Famous Drunk.
We were seated near the top of the stadium, nearly to the “Press Box.”
William Henry looked behind and spied something that interested him.
Behind the stands was the ‘Practice Field’ of the Famed Honey Grove Warriors.
There was a ‘Blaster Machine’ parked there.
Joe and I watched William Henry navigate down the stands and make his way toward same.
We watched with great curiosity as William Henry studied this machine.
He backed up ‘bout fifty foot and charged head-long into it.
It slid back ‘bout ten feet.
He shook his head.
Went back another fifty foot.
Hit it full force.
Slid back another ten foot.
William Henry in earnest now hit it with all his might (and his head)
Still did not get through.
(Blaster Machines are a one – way street)
Joe and I watched him navigate his way back up to our seat.
He sat down, and with blood running into his eyes, said,
“Ya know, you gotta be one tough sumbitch to play football!”
This is the end of my “Escape From Memphis” Saga.
I am done.
Done with it.
I am managing my disease.
But, I am still breathing.
Ran outta booze at zero-four this morning.
I shoulda planned ahead.
Today was Sunday.
No relief until Noon.
What to do?
Pace back and forth in my little Habi-Trail.
Like some kind of fucking Hamster.
Shook until five minutes before noon.
Drove to the beer store.
Got my meds.
All is good now.
I have very few friends.
But the ones I have are ‘keepers.’
I love them.
They, of late, are ‘concerned’ about my
“Doan worry,” I assure them. “I am in a good place.”
“Ya sure?” They always ask.
“Yep. I am certain, anything else on your mind, or did you just call to borrow money?”
“Lance, yer funy.”
“Yep, I know.”
My posts are all over some place…
This does not escape me.
No one reads.
Don’t matter none.
I am writing now for my own edification.
“The days drift by
They don’t have names
None of the streets here look the same
And there’re so many quiet places
And smilin’ eyes match the smilin’ faces”
So here I am.
“What now, Cowboy?”
I am ‘managing’ my disease.
I suppose this is a ‘plus.’
A ‘good’ thing.
Okay, there is that.
But, other than that, what are you going to do with the rest of your life?
“Write, I guess….”
“Good luck with that. You cannot ‘write,’ you suck at writing. Try something else. Ditch Digging comes immediately to mind.”
“I used to build barb-wire fence…”
“Yeah, try that.”
“You are full of excuses, ain’t ya?”
I have settled into some kind of ‘new normal.’
Cast out those delirium tremens daemons.
Yet now, what next?
I am living Large.
I love my life.
I’d like to keep it.
‘Keep on keeping on,’ as they say.
(They say a lot)
I do tend to ramble.
‘Tis my wont.
I am determined to finish this series.
Even if it hair-lips the Pope.
To be continued.
Some many minutes (hours?) later a Brand New Pretty Female Doctor arrived to wake me.
I really was feigning sleep.
She introduced her lovely self.
“I am Doctor So-and-So and I am day shift. How are you, Mister Marcom?”
“Passing fair,” I said.
“We have all the arrangements made for you to go to Garland and get the help you need.”
“Groovy” was all I could muster.
“Well, Okay then. I’ll be right back.”
“And, I’ll be left front,” I said, but not out loud.
Several minutes later, she reappeared.
“OK, it’s all set. Just a few more minutes.”
As I was lying in my bed, thoughts began swirling:
Internal conversation and arguments inside my head:
“Lance, Cowboy, you cannot to Garland.”
“Why not? I need this.”
“Because you have obligations! Asshole!”
“What, which? What obligations?”
“You have the imaginary dog, for one.”
“Oh, yeah, that.”
“And other duties you must perform.”
“In Garland, you will not be allowed to drink.”
“Shit. You are correct Sir.”
“Didn’t think of that one, did you?”
“No. ‘Fraid I did not think this one completely through.”
More minutes passed.
The New Doc came in.
“Mister Marcom, are you ready to go?”
“I’m not going.”
“Not going… but you said…”
“Changed my mind. I have unfinished business here in Commerce.”
“Lance,” she said.
(suddenly we are on ‘First Name Basis’–well OK then)
“If you don’t get treatment, you may die.”
“I’ll study that later.”
“So, you just want to go back to your apartment and….”
“Yeah, ride the wave.”
“I think you are making a mistake. I do not think you can do this all alone.”
“Doc, you may be right, but I am gonna try.”
“Okay then, but know this: we are here for you if you need us.”
“Thank you. I know this. And I do appreciate all of Y’all, but I need to go home, to whatever it is that I call ‘home’ these days.”
“Okay,” she said. “I will be back with some paperwork for you to sign.”
Several minutes later, yet another pretty young thing appeared.
“Lance, the VA says they do not have you on record.”
“The VA says you are not in The system.”
“Impossible,” I said.
“No, we called them. They said you were not in The System.”
“Well, shit,” I said. Isn’t this a fine state of affairs?
“Here is their number. Once you get home, please call them.”
“Will do,” I lied.
Now, isn’t it funny? I could not get kicked out of the Navy when I was in the Navy, but now, I have been kicked out of the Navy.
After all these years.
Spacemen from Mars stole all of my money.
To be continued….
Chapter Ten here:
Chapter Nine here:
Chapter One here: