Posts Tagged With: Fred Harris

This and that from re Thai r ment, by 3Th. 14 Pops 0002 (October 31, 2013)

 

Happy Birthday Aaron

Happy Halloween Everyone

 

TODAY FROM AMERICA:

A. POOKIE’S ADVENTURES IN EL DORADO HILLS:

So my 74th birthday came and went. My daughter sent me a number of interesting books with which to pass my time, including Neal Stephenson’s latest.

My sister held a small birthday party for me at her house in Berkeley. She gave me a wonderful present, a portrait of me painted with colored paper. Here is a photo of it.

IMG_5573 - Version 2

She also cooked up some of my favorite things from my mother’s recipes including her version of cheese cake. My mother, although she was a great cook actually hated to cook, especially to bake. As a result she concentrated on reducing her recipes to the simplest ingredients necessary to appeal to the tastes of her family. Her cheese cake recipe added the step of beating the eggs to a froth producing a cheese cake as light as sponge cake but with all the flavor of something from Lindy’s.

My ex-daughter-in-law Ann told us that my grandson Aaron apparently has become quite the story-teller. At my granddaughter Athena’s 16th birthday party held at the Art complex at Hunters Point, the teenagers left the party to go to another room in the complex to spend most of the evening listening to Aaron tell ghost stories in honor of the season.

After the party I returned to El Dorado Hills and resumed my life as nanny. I spend most of the day while Triple H is in school reading the wonderful books my daughter sent to me.

********************************

It appears as though I may not return to Thailand at the end of November. Originally my daughter scheduled a conference for Bangkok in December. I had hoped to be there with her. The last time she and I traveled around that country was about twenty years ago. The conference has tentatively been moved to January.

**********************************

Fall finally has begun here at the edge of the great Sacramento Valley. The mid-day temperature has dropped out of the 90’s and into the low 80’s and the morning temperatures are quite chilly. The trees for the past two weeks have begun their change to mostly red and brown. The brilliant yellows that have been so common in the area in past years have not yet appeared.

Speaking of the Sacramento Valley, there are places a few blocks from the house where on a clear day one can look across to valley and see the towers of downtown Sacramento on the horizon about 35 miles away.

I still have not resumed a consistent exercise program and have gained more weight than I would like. I blame my lethargy on my happy pills. While they certainly keep the screaming avatars of depression and despair from tearing through my consciousness, the rest of my body seems not to have benefited yet. Today however, I plan a long walk along the trails that snake out from the local park into what passes for wilderness among the subdivisions. Good for me.

*****************************

B. ENTER THE DRAGON:

Dragon’s Breath:

Eddie Mars: Your story didn’t sound quite right.
Philip Marlowe: Oh, that’s too bad. You got a better one?
Eddie Mars: Maybe I can find one.

 

Chapter 31:

While waiting to Mavis to change I received a call from the grieving widow Madame Riley.

“Did you forget about me?” She said. “We were going to talk about finding out how Clarence died.”

“No I didn’t,” I lied. “I have been clearing up a few things first,” I lied some more.

“When will you be free to talk about it?”

“How about this evening, say about 8PM at La Taverna in Belden Alley? Do you know where it is?”

She did and after passing a few more pleasantries she hung up. I had forgotten all about my discussion with her yesterday. “Well another day another thousand dollars,” I thought. I felt confident I could put together a report that would give her and her attorneys a fighting chance with the insurance company.

“Who was that” asked Mavis as she finished dressing? She looked like she was prepared for a two-week camping trip into the Sierras. She wore brown hiking boots, dun-colored cargo pants a checkered long sleeve shirt and a well-worn brown leather jacket.

“Just some business,” I replied.

We left and got in to the car. I put Mavis in the back seat this time. As I got into the passenger seat I asked Joe Vu, “do you have your gun with you? We may need it.”

“You never need a gun,” he responded. “But sometimes it can be useful.”

“Asshole,” I thought.

We traveled down the peninsula passing over Skyline Ridge to Half Moon Bay, then down PCH to the turn off to Pescadero. Pescadero was a tiny town nestled in a valley about a mile or two from the coast. It was noted for antique shops, pottery studios and a popular restaurant specializing in a cuisine focused of the many ways artichokes can be incorporated into a meal.

We passed into the low hills beyond the town and through several rural roads until as directed by Mavis we turned into a dirt driveway that seemed, given the mail boxes impaled near the turnoff, to service four properties that were hidden somewhere over a small rise. As we topped the rise we ran into a cop car blocking the road. Yellow crime scene tape connected several trees around a small clapboard house with peeling white paint and a tiny porch. Other official vehicles including an ambulance were scattered under the trees that surrounded the cottage.

“Oh shit,” I said as a group of uniformed individuals paused in their discussions and looked our way. A woman in a brown sheriff’s uniform broke away from the group and began walking in our direction. She had dark curly red hair, broad masculine shoulders and walked with the slightly waddling gait of a weight lifter.

I heard Mavis behind me say, “oh my God. Something’s happened to Mark.”

“Listen,” I said to the others in the car, “I’ll do the talking and try to find out what happened.” At first I though I’d lie and tell them that we were just taking a drive, but immediately thought better of it. If they found out later we were lying we’d come under scrutiny and scrutiny was something I hated.

As the woman came closer something about her struck me as familiar. I rolled down the window as she approached. “What’s up officer?” I said as she got within conversation range.

 

PEPE’S POTPOURRI:

A. What “Occupy” is all about and what it really wants:
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B. Testosterone Chronicles:

Excerpt from Harvard Business Review article entitled “Why Do So Many Men become Incompetent Leaders.”

“In my view, the main reason for the uneven management sex ratio is our inability to discern between confidence and competence. That is, because we (people in general) commonly misinterpret displays of confidence as a sign of competence, we are fooled into believing that men are better leaders than women. In other words, when it comes to leadership, the only advantage that men have over women (e.g., from Argentina to Norway and the USA to Japan) is the fact that manifestations of hubris — often masked as charisma or charm — are commonly mistaken for leadership potential, and that these occur much more frequently in men than in women.”

C. A Blast From The Past: Populism and Fred Harris

On April 24, 2010 I published the following as my first post in the liberal blog Daily Kos. I thought now, over three years later, it would be interesting to look at it again and see how it stands up to the test of time.

“For those not as old as me and for those who may have forgotten or missed it completely, Fred Harris briefly ran for President of the United States during the primaries of 1972 and 1976. In 1976, Jim Hightower was his national campaign manager and I was a volunteer on the California campaign tasked with preparing a handbook for his efforts in the California primary. The handbook was a collection of selections from the writings and speeches of Fred Harris arranged by topic so that campaign workers could respond to inquires about the candidate in his own words.

After rereading the contents of that long ago document from a now forgotten campaign, I realized how much of what Fred had to say remained relevant now despite the subsequent destruction of the historical American political consensus by the Californian and Texan presidential administrations. So I thought I would begin my diaries by examining some of the issues we face today in the light of what Fred Harris had to say about them 34 years ago.

But first a little about Fred Harris. Fred had been an US Senator from Oklahoma when that state still had a strong progressive populist tradition. Although he started out as a classic liberal, he eventually classified himself, and was in turn identified by the media, as a populist.

Populism deserves a diary of its own. It is a word often used in political discourse, but lacking a clear referent, is more a space filler than informative. For the purpose of this diary I believe it is probably sufficient to view Populism as a response by the populace of that time to specific perceived threats to their liberty and economic well-being. Beyond dealing with those threats populism has little more to say.

What differentiates populism from the more ideological based political philosophies such as liberal, conservative, progressive, reactionary and libertarian is just that, ideology. Populism usually focuses on the current threats and has no ideology beyond dealing with them. It freely borrows responses to those threats from the proscriptions suggested by the more ideological political movements without acknowledgment of their philosophical underpinnings.

There are I believe at least two main types of Populist that I shall call Liberal/Progressive Populists and Conservative/ Libertarian Populists. Liberal/Progressive Populists tend to see the immediate threats to be from government as well as other large organizations, usually corporations or financial institutions. They often believe that government shorn of its threatening aspects can and should control the ravenous appetites of the other institutions.The Conservative/Libertarian Populist sees the current threat emanating primarily from government alone and may be relieved by the elimination of those specific governmental activities they object to. Fred clearly was the former and not the latter.

Let’s turn then to what Fred had to say in 1976 regarding an issue recently front and center of the political debate, health care.

“If you step north of the Canadian border, you have free medical care. No deductibles or co-insurance, no limits on hospital stays or how many times you see your doctor. When that system went into effect twelve years ago, there were those who said the hospitals would be hopelessly overcrowded. Not so, as people are getting preventive care, and as they’re entitled to care without having to be sick enough to go to the hospital.

If you step back across that boundary to the south, you find in this country – the richest country in the world – the best medical care in the world for rich people, and awfully sorry medical care for a lot of people. We rank seventeenth among nations in infant mortality, which is a euphemism that means ‘Your baby’s dead. We don’t have to put up with that.

We ought to have a universal health care system, paid for out of the federal treasury, rather than an insurance system that might be regressive. There should be much more emphasis on group medical practice and preventive care. And a great more emphasis on paramedical personnel.”(Fred Harris Campaign Handbook)

‘It’s like déjà vu all over again.'(citation unnecessary). It has been 34 years since Fred’s proposal and although we have gotten a pretty good start on health insurance reform we are still awaiting health care reform.

Fred goes on to address the baleful influence of doctor dominated institutions on attempts to make fairer and more effective the delivery of health care in the United States. In 1976, doctors or doctor dominated institutions, for good or ill, controlled  health care. It was those institutions such as the AMA that successfully resisted health care reform at the time.

In 1976, the Reagan and Bush fire sale of American institutions to Wall Street, insurance companies, energy corporations and the defense industries had not yet begun but once started, it effectively wrested the United States health care system from the hands of doctors and other medical delivery personnel and placed it in the willing hands of accountants, investment advisors and bankers.

It is interesting to note that Obama’s strategy of allying with the doctor and medical community was probably a major factor in achieving the level of reform obtained by the passage of the recent health reform legislation.”

 

TODAY’S QUOTE:
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TODAY’S CHART:
Enviro_Bad_Map

 

TODAY’S PHOTOGRAPH:
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A visit to Locke California with Triple H and Nikki

 

Categories: October through December 2013 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

This and that from re Thai r ment by 3Th. September 29, 2010

Today’s factoid: THE TRUE STORY OF MOCK DUCK

1900. Mock Duck leader of the Four Brothers and Hip Sing Tongs begins a gang war with Tom Lee’s much larger On Leong Tong over Mock Duck’s demand for 30% of Tom Lee’s gambling revenue in New York’s Chinatown.

1904 November 4 – Hip Sing Tong leader Mock Duck is wounded in a gunfight by three On Leong hatchet men near his Pell Street home.

(Apparently Mock Duck, when in a gunfight would squat down, close his eyes and fire off his two guns until he ran out of ammunition.)

1908 August 15 – The Tong war becomes even more violent after Low Hee Tong, a member of the Four Brothers Tong, purchases a rival Tong slave girl Bow Kum who is later murdered.

(you may want to click on Bow Kum above and read about her tragic story).

December 30 – Ah Hoon, a comedian

(apparently to his regret, the chinese version of Don Rickles)

and member of the On Leong Tong, is killed in his home by rival Hip Song members.

1912. Mock Duck is convicted of running a policy game and sentenced to imprisonment at Sing Sing Prison.

1913. A peace agreement is signed, with the exception of the Four Brothers, ending the gang war between the On Leongs, Hip Sings, and the Kim Lan Wui Saw Tongs.

1918. Tong leader Mock Duck, upon his release from Sing Sing Prison retires from crime.

1924. The gang war between the On Leong and Hip Sing Tongs begins again after several members of the On Leongs defect to the Hip Sings with a large amount of money.

1941. Mock Duck dies in bed of natural causes.

Today’s quote:

“And as to sexual desire, my body’s need is satisfied by what comes first to hand.”
Antisthenes, from The Economist by Xenophon.

Today’s news from Thailand:

The Bangkok Post reports that a pregnant Thai women went into a Thai hospital, where the baby was successfully delivered. Unfortunately, about 5 days after the delivery it was discovered that a nurse mistakenly stitched up the woman’s anus. The stitches were then removed, the woman relieved and an investigation begun.

Today’s medical chart:

I am not sure if this chart was intended to be posted on the examination room wall or used as a reference for some psychologist.

In reading it over I realized that I have succeeded in accomplishing everything listed on the chart often multiple times, except for Jail Term (unless nights in the drunk tank count) and Pregnancy for which I am unqualified. I wonder if one adds up the score from this chart and it totals more than 1000 will he or she win something, like two weeks in the rest home of your choice or a years supply of Valium?

Pookie’s continuing adventures in Thailand:

I spoke with Hayden for only the second time since he arrived in Sacramento. He sounded in good spirits. He was quite excited that, “Uncle Mask,” the owner of the house that he is living in, broke his ankle while walking the dogs. He also told me that he spends a lot of time picking his nose, but he hasn’t found any treasure yet.

The monsoon rains are still with us. They have honored us with their presence for the last three days, forcing me back into my apartment to watch reruns of old Simone Signoret movies on the french channel.

Today’s attachment:

So far the responses to my request for advice on which work in progress I should begin with to send you as an attachment have been all over the lot. The irrepressible and always reliable eight ball in the corner pocket Shotz Man replied:

the petrillo email survey
Please mark by coloring red (BOLD) the selection(s) of which of the below you wish to be in effect

0 keep me on the list so that I may receive a copy of all of the petrillo emails.

0 keep me on the list so that I may receive all of the petrillo emails except the one’s asking for money.

0 keep me on the list for emails that contains only the tales of pookie;and maybe petey.

0 keep me off the list that contains gross descriptions of politicians, thai food, the man on the street, and fat german female tourists, fully closed or (worse) semi-nude.

0 keep me on the list for anything pornographic involving animals.

0 keep me on the list for anything about petrillo being arrested for being an american friend of the red shirts, or for that matter, shorts.

0 keep me off the list for anything that mentions “cuz I”, “irwin”, “schatzman”, or, “the master of written disguise”.

0 keep me off the list that contains an email from Nigeria asking for money.

Nevertheless, surprisingly I received strong support for beginning these attachments with excerpts from my political blog posts. My first attachment, therefore, is a discussion entitled “Populism and Fred Harris.” I originally published it back in April of this year. I thought it was the most polished and least controversial thing I could begin with.

I will follow that in my next email with some of the initial chapters of my mystery novel work in progress.

Ciao.
__________________________________________________

Populism and Fred Harris
by trenzpruca

This is my first attempt to write a diary for this venue. While I have made a living writing on behalf of my clients or for publication, it is normal for one to be timid and uncertain when attempting to enter a new arena and so it has been for me. After drafting and discarding several attempts to write what would appear to me to be a fitting and informative discussion, I turned to divert myself from escalating frustration by straightening out the papers that had accumulated over the years in various boxes and drawers. While doing so I discovered, The Fred Harris Campaign Handbook. It is probably the only remaining copy in existence.

For those not as old as me and for those who may have forgotten or missed it completely, Fred Harris briefly ran for President of the United States during the primaries of 1972 and 1976. In 1976, Jim Hightower was his national campaign manager and I was a volunteer on the California campaign tasked with preparing a handbook for his efforts in the California primary. The handbook was a collection of selections from the writings and speeches of Fred Harris arranged by topic so that campaign workers could respond to inquires about the candidate in his own words.

After rereading the contents of that long ago document from a now forgotten campaign, I realized how much of what Fred had to say remained relevant now despite the subsequent destruction of the historical American political consensus by the Californian and Texan presidential administrations. So I thought I would begin my diaries by examining some of the issues we face today in the light of what Fred Harris had to say about them 34 years ago.

But first a little about Fred Harris. Fred had been an US Senator from Oklahoma when that state still had a strong progressive populist tradition. Although he started out as a classic liberal, he eventually classified himself, and was in turn identified by the media, as a populist.

Populism deserves a diary of its own. It is a word often used in political discourse, but lacking a clear referent, is more a space filler than informative. For the purpose of this diary I believe it is probably sufficient to view Populism as a response by the populace of that time to specific perceived threats to their liberty and economic well-being.  Beyond dealing with those threats populism has little more to say.

What differentiates populism from the more ideological based political philosophies such as liberal, conservative, progressive, reactionary and libertarian is just that, ideology. Populism usually focuses on the current threats and has no ideology beyond dealing with them. It freely borrows responses to those threats from the proscriptions suggested by the more ideological political movements without acknowledgment of their philosophical underpinnings.

There are I believe at least two main types of Populist that I shall call Liberal/Progressive Populists and Conservative/ Libertarian Populists. Liberal/Progressive Populists tend to see the immediate threats to be from government as well as other large organizations, usually corporations or financial institutions. They often believe that government shorn of its threatening aspects can and should control the ravenous appetites of the other institutions.The Conservative/Libertarian Populist sees the current threat emanating primarily from government alone and may be relieved by the elimination of those specific governmental activities they object to. Fred clearly was the former and not the latter.
Let’s turn then to what Fred had to say in 1976 regarding an issue recently front and center of the political debate, health care.

“If you step north of the Canadian border, you have free medical care. No deductibles or co-insurance, no limits on hospital stays or how many times you see your doctor. When that system went into effect twelve years ago, there were those who said the hospitals would be hopelessly overcrowded. Not so, as people are getting preventive care, and as they’re entitled to care without having to be sick enough to go to the hospital.

If you step back across that boundary to the south, you find in this country-the richest country in the world the best medical care in the world for rich people, and awfully sorry medical care for a lot of people. We rank seventeenth among nations in infant mortality, which is a euphemism that means, ‘Your baby’s dead’. We don’t have to put up with that.

We ought to have a universal health care system, paid for out of the federal treasury, rather than an insurance system that might be regressive. There should be much more emphasis on group medical practice and preventive care. And a great more emphasis on paramedical personnel.”

(Fred Harris Campaign Handbook)

“It’s like déjà vu all over again.” (citation unnecessary). It has been 34 years since Fred’s proposal and although we have gotten a pretty good start on health insurance reform, we are still awaiting health care reform.

Fred goes on, in the continuation of the above quote, to address the baleful influence of doctor dominated institutions on attempts to make fairer and more effective the delivery of health care in the United States. In 1976 health care, for good or ill, was controlled primarily by doctors or doctor dominated institutions. It was those institutions such as the AMA that successfully resisted health care reform at the time.

In 1976, the Reagan and Bush fire sale of American institutions to Wall Street, insurance companies, energy corporations and the defense industries had not yet begun but once started, it effectively wrested the United States health care system from the hands of doctors and other medical delivery personnel and placed it in the willing hands of accountants, investment advisors and bankers.
It is interesting to note that Obama’s strategy of allying with the doctor and medical community was probably a major factor in achieving the level of reform that was obtained with the passage of the recent health reform legislation.

My next post shall examine Fred’s positions on Wall Street, a subject that makes the blood of all true populists quicken.

(This article first appeared in Daily Kos April 24 2010)

Categories: July 2010 through September 2010 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

This and that from re Thai r ment. April 25, 2010

I have lost almost 20 pounds since I left the US. That means either I am eating a lot less or I am exercising more or I have come down with some horrible wasting sickness. I hope to lose about 10 more pounds before beginning a more vigorous exercise regime than my 10 to 20 minutes swimming a day. Maybe I will start lifting weights and try to replace my 70-year-old gut with a 70-year-old six-pack, then again maybe not.

Yesterday I published my first piece in a political blog. I was very excited. The blog is the one that Bill O’Rielly called the most evil in the nation. He seems to believe the contributors to the blog are those same people who used to attend demonstrations criticizing and ridiculing the President. Of course that only made it the blog I would attempt to write for first.

Actually it is all quite simple you just sign up and write away. Nevertheless despite the simplicity, I found trying to write the first piece daunting, fearing that whatever I submitted would be ridiculed by somebody thereby destroying my confidence and rendering me incapable of gong out in the daytime. After writing and erasing a number of attempts at composing the miserable little three or four paragraph comment, I gave up. To divert myself from my frustration, I started rummaging through the few documents that I had brought with me from the US after disposing of everything else I own. In addition to two diaries from the 1960s containing some horrid poetry and the musings of an evil, self-absorbed pissant, I came across something entitled “The Fred Harris Campaign Handbook,” perhaps the last copy in existence. For those who are too young or who may have missed it, Fred was very briefly, a candidate for the presidency of the United States on the Democratic ticket during the 1972 and 1976 presidential campaigns. Fred campaigned as the populist candidate on behalf of the little people of America.

I was his issues chairman for the California primary, and as such prepared the Handbook. It was organized by issue, containing Fred’s writings or speeches on each topic so that campaign workers could respond in the candidate’s own words to inquiries about where Fred stood on an issue. As it turned out the Handbook was never needed because Fred never made it to the California primary in 1976 where we were convinced that he would clinch the nomination and I would be up for an appointment as Secretary of State, Attorney General or a nomination to the Supreme Court or at least an indictment. No, Fred lost big time in the New Hampshire primary and was forced to drop out of the race for lack of money. When asked by the press what happened Fred responded, “Well I guess the little people were too short to reach the lever by my name”. (For those of you too young to know, before the invention of fire voting machines required a voter to pull down a little lever by the candidate’s name in order to record the vote)

Anyway, I thought since I was not confident in my own words, I would use Fred’s and add my own witty comments and insights to elucidate and relate Fred’s thoughts to the current political situation. That worked quite well and I submitted the piece and was quite pleased to see it published.

I was even more pleased when the next day, there were a number of positive comments on my submission and nary a negative. One articulate gentlemen’s comment contained only the word “awesome”.

Almost immediately my pleasure passed when I realized that I had to write a follow-up and that just had become much more difficult. It was like when I was much younger and did a little bit of acting on the stage, if the audience liked my performance, I could not go on the following night unless I was pushed onto the stage because I was paralyzed with fear that I would not be able to repeat the previous night’s success.

Anyway, what ever happened to Fred? Well, he dutifully campaigned for Jimmy Carter in California. Fred and his wife La donna spent election night at my house in San Francisco and when Carter accepted Ford’s concession I looked at Fred and could see that the light had gone out of his eyes in despair over the ending of his political ambitions. Either that or he was dead drunk and about to pass out. Come to think of it, it was probably the latter since I seem to recall that thhttps://josephpetrillo.wordpress.com/wp-admin/post-new.php?post_type=post#titledive next morning we found Fred asleep in my back yard.

History is great isn’t it? They should start teaching it again in High School.

Ciao

____________________________________________

EXCERPTS FROM DIARY PRIOR TO POST:

WEDNESDAY APRIL 21, 2010 11PN

Again I cannot get to sleep and so I turn back to writing this diary. Before going into my trip to Chiang Mai and its aftermath I thought it would be a good idea to to paste here some of my more interesting correspondence of the last four days.

First is a response to an email from Irwin,

“Yesterday I learned a few things.

First fat women should not wear Brazilian thong bikinis.”

Second, the dammed water festival goes on until tomorrow.

Thinking the madness was over and feeling a bit bored before my trip to CM, I decided to make the one mile or so down the road to Hell (Pattaya) for dinner and to see the action. So I dressed in pressed pants and shirt and set out in an unprotected songtheuw for an evening in Hell. Within the first 50 yards we ran into the revelers and by the time I arrived at the outskirts of Hell I was drenched as though I had dove into the condo pool and very pissed. I found a falafel shop and sat near the spit to try to dry off while I ate. Still damp, I set off on a walk around Hell.

In Hell you can buy anything you want from whatever sexual perversion fit your tastes, food of all cuisines, various medical treatments, goods services and so on. And it is all exhibited on the streets and alleys for examination and sampling. Although Hell was fashioned by American soldiers during the Viet Nan war from a sleepy Thai fishing village,there are now many ethnic sections in Hell. The Muslim section has good food and Hookahs (the kind you smoke, not the kind that smoke you although there are plenty of them also). The Russian section, which appears to be a new phenomena, seems to specialize  talking loudly and huge white bodies.

The Main Street in Hell is called the Walking Street. It runs along the shore and automobiles are prohibited. Each side of the street is lined with food and flesh establishments that draw to it the underbelly of the world. All the establishments are open to the street, one even has a Thai boxing ring  set up where you can watch professional Thai boxing matches while drinking beer with one hand and exploring the pleasure available under the waitresses costume with the other.

Hell reminds me of the Island of Lost boys that Strombolli takes Pinocchio and his friends to smoke cigars, play pool and engage in other manly pursuits like that. Of course in the end they all turn into donkeys. But, is that any worse than being swallowed by a whale and turned into a living boy to enjoy the miseries of life.

After a while I stopped at one of the bars, ordered a beer and watched the doings on the street. One of the bartendys (What Thais call female bartenders) caught my eye and so I asked her how much she charges to spend the night pleasuring me. The quoted price was a little under $30. Having been away from Hell for so long, I no longer knew if that is a good price or not, so I got her number and promised to call back. 

I then left the bar and went to the Shark Club a so called Go-Go bar where one of my former employees was a featured dancer. In the Shark Club  totally naked women, except for a  small ruffle around the waist that did not quite reach the pubic area and which sported a number by which you can order up that particular lady for the night, danced around some poles on the top of the bar.. Lek my friend’s number was 1. They also had a hot tub where the ladies removed their belt, lathered themselves up and danced on the edges of the tub.

This club was strictly look and pay to take out and not one of the clubs offering ladies smoking cigarettes, shooting darts into balloons or ping-pong balls off the walls or drawing out strings of razor blades all from their very well trained vaginas. (The legendary fucking a donkey on stage only happens in Tiajuanna if at all I am afraid). Another type of bar that is quite popular is one in which you can sit at the bar drinking a beer and talking to a buddy about football or whatever and a window opens in the bar in front of you and a woman sticks her head out and gives you a blow job.

Anyway my friend Lek is the star at Shark’s. When she worked at my bar, although she always had a great tiny body her face was marred with acne scars and was too moon shaped to be successfully bought out very often. But she went to Hell, had the scars removed and the shape of the face adjusted and now is a ravishing beauty. Anyway after watching her dance on the hot tub for me and arranging for dinner after my return from Chiang Mai, I left to return to paradise.

I piled into a songtheuw with a lot of Russians and their big bodies sheltered me from the worst of the attacks of the water fiends.

And today is another day and I have to figure out how to get to the bus station this evening without getting drenched.

Ciao”

The second is my follow up “This and that…” post

 “I am writing this from the overnight bus to Chiang Mai. I am heading back to my suburban paradise to pick up some of the things I left there when I moved to Jomtien Beach Paradise, which is located about a mile down the road from Pattaya, a city clearly on the outskirts of Hell.

Last night feeling a bit bored, I decided to travel the road to Hell for dinner and to look around. I dressed for my night out in freshly pressed pants and shirt only to discover that the Songkran festival was still going on and would continue through today. In any event, by the time I arrived at the outskirts to Hell I may as well have jumped fully clothed into the pool. I found a falafel shop and huddled near the spit to dry off, with little success. After eating, I walked around OOL (OUTSKIRTS OF HELL) . Although OOL was created out of a little Thai fishing village to provide RR for American service men during the Viet Nam War, it has developed a number of ethnic areas such as a Muslim section containing good food and water pipes to smoke and the new Russian tourist area that appears to specialize only in loud talking and giant white bodies.

Just about anything you could possibly want and a lot that you would not can be obtained in OOL for a price and it is all exhibited right there in front of you. The main street of OLL is called the Walking Street, it runs along the waterfront and all the establishments open on to the street so that, like the Plaka in Athens. You sit in front of the bars drinking your Retsina (in this case Beer) and watch the doings.

I strolled around for a while, stopped by a Go-Go bar called “Sharks” to visit a friend who used to work as a bartender in my bar in BKK and now is a featured dancer and  then returned home.

This morning I awoke and realized that the suitcase I was going to bring with me to CM in which to pack my things was too small to carry everything I needed. Also after I left to go to the Bus station, I discovered that the Songkran festival was not only continuing but that this was to be the “big day”.  As I set off to purchase an adequately sized  suitcase and go to the bus station I found that the road was so jammed with partiers that it was impassable and no covered conveyance was available.  So, I had to walked the mile or so distance to the turn from the beach road onto the street that would take me into Pattaya where I could buy some cheap luggage, do some banking and hopefully get to the bus station on time all the while praying that I could avoid getting too wet. I arrived at the junction depressed that my dry run of two days ago seemed a complete failure and pleased with the rationalization that probably without the dry run things could have been much worse. Although I avoided most of the water, I was drenched in sweat anyway. (Today’s photos show a bit of the madness).

Unfortunately, the intersection had the inflammatory situation of being the locus of a collection of gay, transgender and straight bars, hysteria and costumes and everything was…well, rampant. Also large water trucks, not the pickup trucks with barrels of water in the back but real tankers were parked in the middle of the intersection with their operators gleefully spraying the overheated revelers with hoses.

Anyway, although I  worked my way through the intersection mostly successfully, about 300 yards further along the road I came upon a particularly nasty knot of bleached white caucasians and a few Thais gleefully wetting down anything that moved.  I gingerly made my way through the crowd shouting “no water, no water”. The Thais complied. As I explained previously, when you signaled to a Thai that you did not want to be drenched they would desist or politely ask you to let them anoint you for the sake of the festival and if you  agree they gently throw a few drops of water on you. Not so with the european contingent who seemed to determined to use the festival either as an occasion to practice for total war or an opportunity to demonstrate their racial dominance.

So just as I was about to pass beyond this particular group I was struck violently in the back by a jet of water from one of those plunger operated water cannons I described in my previous email. I turned and saw a rather large male with his faux penis erect and dripping and pointed directly at me. He stared at me in triumph looking a lot like a water buffalo in heat. I wagged my finger at him. He clearly interpreted it as a challenge and sprayed me again with his cannon this time drenching my front. Well, I immediately saw that this was going to become an epic challenge for leadership of the herd and so I strode back to him and pored much of the cola drink I was carrying over his head. He retaliated by spraying me again, so I threw the remainder of the drink into his face. That’s when I learned he was Australian because he could not say ‘fuck’ properly, pronouncing it something like ‘fawrk’ and he threw more water on me and thats when I bitch slapped him  up-side his head as they say (In a later post I will explain why a bitch slap is often better than a closed fist punch). Anyway that elicited a number of ‘fawrks’ from him and the others. Satisfied with my manly response to the challenge, I turned  began to walk away fairly confident there would be minimal retaliation because men everywhere are usually dumb as stones  when challenged. Suddenly a woman (the brighter and quicker of the sexes) yelled “Are you going to let him get away with that” and I was pelted on my rapidly receding but now heroic back with a few more bursts of water and a lot more ‘fawrks’.

Flushed with pleasure from the adrenaline high and happy with that pleasure generally experienced the  males of the species whenever they are able to beat their chests and roar over doing something stupid and worthless, I jumped on the next songtheuw, got even more thoroughly drenched, bought my cheep one trip luggage ($20), did my banking and purchased a change of clothes, a pair of pants too big in the waist and too short in leg and a polo shirt from a company appropriately named “Geek” .

(as an aside I must mention one of Joe’s rules:

“Doing something incredibly stupid and getting away with it can make your whole week.”

So Joe’s advice is do something stupid at least once a week, it’s better than Prozac)

I arrived at the bus station in plenty of time to change. I got on the bus and am ready to sleep pleased in the knowledge that had I been a little smarter and had a little more foresight, I would have missed the events of the day and had no story to tell. G’night.

Ciao”

I did not sleep well on the bus and when I arrived in CM I was very tired and exhausted from the day before. I noticed that several times during the events related in the above emails, I was so exhausted that I could not hold a drink in my hand without the hand shaking uncontrollably.

I had my usual arguments with the taxi drivers over the fare (they wanted 300 baht for the two mile drive from the bis station to the subdivision while the 5 or six hundred mile bus fare cost only about 200 baht meal included). Anyway, I dragged my new luggage over to a songtheuw and took it to the Central shopping center (20 baht) and switched to another for the ride down the CM-Hangdong highway to the entrance to the subdivision (Actually we went a bit past the entrance before I realized in when we passed the pottery village mega-pot and I got off and walked back). I walked to the school and visited briefly with Choti who was very busy. As I walked to the house I met the missionaries on their motor bikes talking Micah to school. We talked about the Hayden situation and they volunteered to take him in if N. would let her. Then as we separated she gave me a hug saying this is how we do it in Georgia. Her husband gave her a strange look.

I then walked to the house. Pi Newan opened the gate and I went directly upstairs and began packing. I took a pillow from the master bed and some bedding along with my things. There was more than would fit in the new suitcase and my travel brief case so I packed the rest in plastic bags. After dumping a bunch of q-tips into the toilet and taking a cold shower, I changed out of my travel clothes and wrestled the luggage down the stairs. Pi Newan appeared surprised I was leaving. She showed me the electric bills that N wanted me to pay.

I left everything in front of the door and walked to Jerry’s house where I found him sitting in his usual chair reading. I gave him the computer games and audio books for the school and we talked for a while mostly about the Hayden. We then agreed to go to lunch at the buffet he had recommended to me several times.

We went on his motorcycle to the school to pick up the car. We stopped in to see Choti. She was sitting in her office with one of her teachers discussing Hayden. We spoke for a while and the missionary’s wife came in. As I described the Hayden situation, I noticed tears flowing down my cheek. I was embarrassed. Jerry and I left and went to the Buffet which was quite good.

On the way back we stopped at the airport to get my return ticket and then went to the immigration office to talk to the immigration officer that Choiti suggested. It was unhelpful. We then went to Lexus-Tesco to buy a small piece of luggage in which to put the my things that I packed in plastic bags. By then Cordt called and agreed to pick me up at the house and drive me to the airport. Jerry dropped me off and I went upstairs to lie down while waiting for Cordt. While I was resting the electricity was turned off presumably for non payment.

Cordt arrived. I went down stairs and loaded my luggage into his car and then wen back to Pi Newan, gave her 1000 baht said good-by and gave her a hug and left.

We decided to stop at the coffee shop before going to the airport. Cordt explained that he wanted my advice for his sister who was an in house labor attorney for Pfizer and had been laid off. We then started discussing Hayden and I could not stop crying. He said that the always believed N. was crazy and had a split personality disorder.

I got on the plane, after paying a 600 baht charge for excess baggage weight, I dozed o the plane.

When I arrived at Don Muang, I found that I did not have enough money for a taxi to Jomtien Beach and that there was no bus from the airport to Pattaya. I took a taxi to the bus station rather than taking me to the Erkamai bus station the driver took me to Mo chit station that he said had buses to P. and was a less expensive taxi ride. I did not trust him and so did not tip him. To my chagrin, he was right and I was wrong.

Paid 130 baht for the ticke to Pattaya and wrestled my three pieces of very heavy luggage onto the bus platform and left for Pattaya.

When I arrived, I again had my usual argument with the songtheuw driver. I tried to get onto the vehicle. He said “where are you going?” I knowing that he wanted to charge me farang rated responded that I wanted to go wherever the vehicle was going and make my way from there. This infuriated him and her tried to charge me an additional amount for my luggage. I walked off and found a driver who would take me to my door. Although is still is a lot (more than the bus fare from BKK) by now I know the expected prices and after all it was all the way to my door,

I got to my condo and began unpacking. I received a call from Tai. I asked her why she was calling and why did she do what she did to me. She refused to answer then said that she still loved me but that the baby cost 20,000 baht per month and she had to work although she was not working now. I asked who pays it now and she said that it was the father. I pointed out that I could not see her problem, she could live with me as planned and if she wanted to work I would care for the baby. She said the baby should have a nanny. I responded that we would have enough money for that. She said that I did not understand. I finally I got fed up and terminated the conversation. I called her back after a few moments and told her that I would rather she not call me until she was willing to speak truthfully, hung up and went to bed.

Today I woke up exhausted. The maid came to clean the condo and someone came to fix the sliding glass door. I spent most of the day dozing. This evening before beginning this I read one of my diaries from 1962. More about that later.

THURSDAY APRIL 22 2010 1 PM

I am in the lobby waiting for someone either very attractive with large knockers and butt and quite feminine with something extra or a tall, ordinary looking prostitute. Exciting isn’t it?

3:30 PM

She was the former but the extra was not fully functional. She has the usual story.
Plan to meet Gates tonight.
Lek called, OK dinner Sunday.

10:30 PM

Returned from night in Pattaya with Gates and his Persian night club owning client. Stopped in bar for a beer then went to Persian Restaurant for dinner (Just OK). Then to Something Witch Go-Go bar. Threw ping pong balls at dancers, had a few come and sit with us, joked with the waitress drank beer and Coca -Cola. Persian paid. Got bored and left. They went to a soapy massage place and I went home.

FRIDAY APRIL 23, 2010 12 NOON

Need to resolve visa issues. Anxiety attack. Need to calm down.

11:30 PM

Went out to Bank and then to Pattaya to meet up with Gates, Roy the San Jose persian night club owner, Mike the stiff and Gary the weight lifter. Mike and Gary accumulated some wealth in their careers and held on to it. They now live in Pattaya. We met at a pub called Queen Victoria located on soi 6 road 2 in central Pattaya. Gary arranged for someone to meet me on Monday to assist me with my immigration problems. After dinner we walked up and down soi 6. Soi 6 is not near the main tourist districts of Pattaya but is lined with girlie bars on both sides of the street just like along the Walking Street. According to Mike and Gary, the women here are much less expensive than those working the bars along the Walking Street.

We went into one whose name I cannot recall, Miss Saigon I believe. Immediately one of the bar girls came up to me and began rubbing my cock. I decided to take her upstairs for a bang. Mike and Roy decided to take girls upstairs also.

We undressed, showered then lay on the bed where she began to blow me. After awhile it was clear to me at least and I suspect to her also that I was not cumming, so she put a rubber on me then climbed on me sort of reverse cowboy style in that Thai crouch and pumped up and down until came. (Cost for drinks, bar fine, girl and tips 1450 baht)

Later we decided to go to Super-girls and see Lek perform. When we got there we found out that Lek had been bought out. I was getting tired and so I left them there and took the songtheuw home.

SATURDAY APRIL 24 2010 9 PM

Did little today. Stayed close to home. Had breakfast at Cafe Le Mar. The man who eats breakfast there at the same time that I do and reads the Bangkok Post while I work on my computer told me a new road in Pattaya collapsed because of the recent rains.

I returned to my building and completed the “Fred Harris” diary for Kos and sent it off. I was pleased no end in seeing it published on the blog. Emailed missionaries name of Limoncello Restaurant, Called Gates told him I was sticking close to home today but would try to see him tomorrow when I take Lek to dinner. Wrote emails to Nikki, Jessica and Cordt. Responded to Ruth’s email regarding resigning bishops. Took a brief swim. Began the second Fred Harris diary. Took a shower and am now ready for bed.

Categories: April 2010 through June 2010 | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

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