Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Part two – Hanging Tree

This post will not make a lot of sense without the context provided at Resistance. Regarding the appearance of blind stupidity in this post, the Resistance post provides at least a few mitigating factors.

Children do not think in complex terms. They typically operate by trial and error and find a path of least resistance. From an emotional standpoint, children will guard themselves, sometimes in complex ways. You can call it instinct or hardwired knowledge or whatever you wish, but however you look at it, basic rules do apply.
Rule number one is, Violence Begets Violence.
Violence also encourages adaptation. By the age of six, I had already begun to develop a relatively sophisticated game plan to deal with the old man. Gauging the threat level was next to impossible; he was unpredictable and prone to explosive violence, where his temperament was concerned, there were only two settings, “Friendly” and “Angel of Death.”

At that time, vigilance was my only defense. In the coming years, a gradual evolution towards the use of subterfuge began to show promise, but at some point, the level of violence reached critical mass and my brothers and I turned on each other. It became a ruthless cycle of attack and retaliation. The old man beat us unmercifully. My brothers and I carried on his good works by beating the hell out of each other, and the old man beat us for fighting each other. By the age of nine, communication between my brothers and me consisted primarily of intimidation, insult and physical attack.

Vigilance and subterfuge were primarily threat management strategies. By the time I started experimenting with the hangman’s noose at the age of eight, it was not enough to affect a specific outcome where the beatings were concerned. I needed to find a way to stabilize the emotional damage. I found myself repeating, over and over, day after day, “I am amazingly well adjusted,” and “Other people have it a lot worse than I do.” Of those two statements, only one was actually true. I knew about poverty. I had heard of entire populations decimated by disease, war, and starvation. I became obsessed with the plight of the dead and the dying, and I maintained a constant state of mortification at my own sniveling weakness in the face of adversity. It might not have been the best strategy, but the conditions under which I lived were effectively trivialized nonetheless.

The idea of hanging myself in trees seems a little odd even to me, but I now view it as a primitive attempt to shore up and rebuild a shattered ego. If I could not stand up for myself against the old man, I could at least prove my worthiness through acts of what I considered at the time to be bravery. I was a kid, what else was I going to do? The adrenaline and self-satisfaction provided by hanging episodes faded quickly and it did actually hurt quite a bit so I moved on. Enter the obstacle course. I chipped a bone in my ankle while traversing a pile of sawed-off telephone poles and then broke my nose while dodging in and out of sawhorses and construction supplies. There followed a rapid sequence of burns, bruises, scratches, out-of-control fires, a near drowning and a particularly nasty fall that pitted one of my testicles against a very solid wood plank. My left testicle came out on the short end of that stick; the other lived to fight another day. While the list of injuries was well within normal parameters for a growing boy, manifestations of a life-long obsession with risk were becoming evident. I was also getting much better at pulling off successful (injury free) adventures.

Soon there would be the cactus incident, head first into a giant prickly pear and then a spear fight with big brother that ended with brother attempting to pull a large piece of wood out of my leg. The spear tip, buried deep at a steep angle of penetration, would not budge. Racing against the clock since the old man would be home from work soon, big brother retrieved a pair of wire pliers. The pliers worked like a charm but the wound festered for weeks before finally shedding the last splinters. A short time later, a similar wound in big brother’s hand became so infected, the rotten smell almost undid his efforts to hide his crime from the father unit. Blood poisoning be damned, it was retribution from the old man that had us running scared.

By the age of ten, things were heating up a bit. There were horseback ejections, hog mishaps, rooster gaffs, cuts, a punctured ear drum, gunpowder flash burns, stings and bites to name a few. I’m pretty sure if an animal has the capacity to bite, I have been bitten by it. It all started with dogs, cats, turtles and ducks and then moved on to squirrels, goats, horses, lizards, geese, a monkey, spiders, a possum, little brother, countless species of non-poisonous snakes and a milk cow. Who in the hell gets bitten by a goddamn milk cow? Me, the human chew toy, that’s who. It just goes on and on. I fell out the passenger door of a truck in a high-speed turn, rolled down hills in oil drums and found increasingly more creative ways to remove the skin from my elbows, knees, and hands. I assisted big brother in capturing wasp nests in mayonnaise jars. Wasps never attacked big brother, only me, and I had perpetually sprained ankles from sprinting across dried mud beds pockmarked with deep horse and cow tracks. I never made it all the way across without turning one or both ankles but I just kept trying, year after year. While all of this was going on, the old man had his way and never missed an opportunity to break his sons in the same manner that he broke his horses.

By the time of the amputations, I was exhausted from over ten long years of miserable family strife. The beatings had become more numerous and significantly more violent over time. The psychological stress of living with a ticking time bomb resulted in an aborted attempt to leave home at the age of fifteen and a successful exodus at sixteen. I landed a full-time job and promptly started a war with the local police department. Who could have seen that coming? Now fully endowed with an overblown sensitivity to injustice, I began showing my middle finger to any uniformed authority figure I deemed crooked or otherwise unworthy to wear a badge, as if that were my job. Consequently, I was manhandled, cursed, threatened, and/or arrested by a succession of police officers, one of whom had become so desperately bored with my antics that he finally just rolled his eyes, shook his head and drove away as I publicly questioned the legitimacy of his birth. Approaching a pinnacle of self-delusion, I proclaimed my anti-authoritarian behavior to be a service to the community. Apparently, society owed me something for keeping the system honest and I continued to marvel at how “amazingly well adjusted” I was. I won a few battles with the constables but ultimately lost the war after months of confrontation, two raids and the tiring effects of hypervigilance slowed me down long enough to graduate from high school.

--------------Me in the later years - Vancouver WA --------------
It was during this period, directly after high school, that something wonderful happened. I know what you’re thinking, but it had nothing to do with “Gawd having mercy on my wretched soul.” I went to work full time on an ironworking crew. On the first day of the job, I found myself creeping along on an I-beam high above the ground. By the end of the first week, I was walking narrow lengths of structural iron and scaring myself half to death. By month two, a circus trapeze could not have done a better job of satisfying my addiction to adrenaline. We were based in non-union territory, which meant freedom from the constraints of safety gear, i.e., no lanyards, nets, or harnesses. OSHA had no significant presence there so I rode the crane ball at every opportunity. The things I craved most, danger and adversity, had materialized in the form of gainful employment. The pay package was less than generous, minimum wage, no insurance, and no benefits. Even so, I considered it my own little slice of paradise.

I loved my job. Practically to the man, my workmates were psychotic reprobates dedicated to a life of beer, weed, fucking, and ironworking, not necessarily in that order. Hands blistered through leather gloves in the 100 plus degree summers and clothes froze to the iron during the winter months. Frayed blue jeans caught fire and lightening storms were of particular interest while clinging to what amounted to giant lightening rods. There followed a long procession of roach infested hotels, seedy bars with sticky dance floors, and paychecks that never materialized. Our jobsites, strung out from the Mexican border to Oklahoma and from the god-forsaken wastelands of West Texas to Louisiana, ranged from glorious to otherwise. Every jobsite had its peculiarities, one in particular sat adjacent to a huge fish mill located next to a shipping lane on the Gulf Coast. These mills turned unbelievably large piles of stinky fish into mountains of fish dust for use in cat food, fish sticks, and other tasty treats. The fish dust blew in the wind and coated everything, buildings, tools, equipment, and us. Rainy days came often. Rain transforms fish dust into fish goo and everybody knows that flies love fish goo. In no time, thousands of pounds of squirming maggots would appear, piling up like snowdrifts in nooks and crannies and generally getting into everything. On the first day of the job, one of our crew, a good friend of mine, pointed towards a dark protoplasmic blob on the concrete foundation. He mentioned that the gunk appeared to be boiling and asked me what it was. I told him it was maggots and he vomited where he stood. We were not wealthy people; food was a valuable commodity. He wasted a lot of food on that jobsite. Even years later, I could provoke a dry heave just by mentioning the phrase “live rice” to him at dinnertime.

I was mostly happy with my job and the rate of injury slowed a bit. However, even under those circumstances, I chaffed under the yoke of oppression. After about a year, I submitted an application for an Employer Identification Number, hired a crew, and started a steel erection business. Steel erection is the same as ironworking; it was just so much more fun saying the word “erection” every time I answered the phone.

I had found an outlet for a lifetime of frustration and I couldn’t have been happier. Unfortunately, acquiring a focal point for self-destructive behavior turned out to be a little counter-productive. In the next few years, there was a split kneecap, multiple car crashes, a broken collar bone, two concussions, one subdural hematoma, broken neck bone (not serious), bruised organs and internal bleeding, both arms broken simultaneously, rib fractures twice, multiple eye injuries including slag burns and metal debris removal as well as an unending list of punctures, cuts and nasty burns. I had no money or insurance so I stockpiled surgical tape, super glue, gauze, steri-strips, alcohol, and painkillers for emergency purposes. While I could handle most injuries on my own, for bone breaks, deep cuts and head injuries, I grudgingly sought emergency room services from the only game in town, a place known locally as the slaughterhouse. It took years to pay off my debts to that disappointing excuse for a hospital, which only heightened my hatred of the system.

At the time, even as I was getting comfortable with the idea that I simply could not be killed, I was pretty sure the odds were shifting in favor of a significantly shortened life span. I was sure I could beat the odds, but it was still inconceivable to me that I would live past the age of 35 or 40. Mutually exclusive concepts do make strange bedfellows. I did not intend to change my lifestyle so I guess it is obvious which side won the coin toss.

Then, I became a dad. If you are so inclined, click here for some of the details surrounding that momentous affair. My transition to fatherhood was a painful ordeal. It came as no surprise to some that I hated children. I hated the way they looked, sounded, and smelled. They were so needy and illogical. Most of all, I despised the misery they represented. From that perspective, it was beyond my capacity to understand why the human race had not gone extinct eons ago. Where my little girl was concerned, I had been impersonating a dad for a while. On this particular day, she was giving me that slobbery baby grin that I had seen a few times before. Instead of contemplating the contents of her stomach, and how I might dodge those contents should they spew forth, I had an epiphany. Simply put, it occurred to me that my history was not necessarily her destiny. This of course should have been self-evident but it was not. News flash! It turns out I was not so “amazingly well adjusted” after all. I was an emotional cripple in crisis mode, clumsily grasping at the simplest of concepts. Prior to that moment, I had wondered at what age my little girl would start hanging herself in trees. I never doubted that I would break the chain of violence; I would never put a child through the misery that I had known. Even so, it never crossed my mind until then that I might raise a child who didn’t want to kill me.

It may sound trite, but there is no other way to say it, with that one brilliant flash of insight, happiness and contentment settled into my life like a West Texas winter, that is, without warning and catching me completely unprepared. I had a lot of studying to do. Among other assignments, I had to figure out how to use the phrase “I love” in sentences having nothing to do with my feelings towards chicken-fried-steak and gravy.

Misery is an easy choice; the proof is all around. When offered an alterative to hate, people often can’t bear the thought of letting go of that old familiarity. It defines who they are and provides rationalization for a wasted life. I think understanding the self-destructive nature of hate doesn’t make it any easier to overcome it. But then I’m not qualified to make that judgment. I might never have broken free if not for my little girl. I’m certain she is largely responsible for my return to humanity. Don’t get me wrong, this was not a Hollywood ending. It took years of hard work with sporadic episodes of lunacy but I got the job done just in time to for Jilly to come into my life. Hooray! It doesn’t suck to be me.

Oh yeah, so much for my new year’s resolution to stop posting encyclopedic tomes. If you actually read this far into my post, I guess it sucks to be you. ;-)


Blogger Hammer said...

Amazing and tragic. My father in law told me a similar story about running to work in the oilfields at 12 to escape the beatings.

I'm glad you were introspective and didn't pass on the violence.

Thanks for the story, I think I can take some lessons from it.

6:49 PM, February 07, 2007  
Blogger Scott from Oregon said...

What I got from this was the feeling that I just stuck my head in a bath filled with water and a hair dryer plgged in...

After going through that, I feel like I can take anything...

Try this all again, from the perspective of people who would like to UNDERSTAND.


I am still trying to get the amps out of my ears...

10:48 PM, February 07, 2007  
Blogger Stucco said...

You're a good doobie, Slag. I'm glad you survived it all.

11:21 PM, February 07, 2007  
Blogger Irene said...

Yours is an extraordinary tale of wonderful triumph over terrible adversity. I was riveted and touched by your experiences and couldn't help but feel pride in what you are now.

Thank you for your generosity and sincerity in sharing something we can all learn from. =)

11:24 PM, February 07, 2007  
Blogger Glamourpuss said...

So, what I want to know is, have you forgiven your father?

That's the bit I'm struggling with.


6:25 AM, February 08, 2007  
Blogger Jazz said...

Personally, I find you amazingly well adjusted... There is no way I would dare share my stuff like that.

You rock slag.

10:55 AM, February 08, 2007  
Blogger Anne said...

Wow, what an amazing story. Thanks for sharing.

1:13 PM, February 08, 2007  
Blogger Mystic Wing said...

What a long, strange trip it's been.

Fascinating story, Slag. And it makes some sense, now that I've heard and read all the backstories. YOu show a remarkable ability to put your life in context.

Do you still struggle with the need for danger? Or has it entirely vanished these days?

If you need inspiration, think of the grandkids who are possibly in your future.

1:14 PM, February 08, 2007  
Blogger slaghammer said...

Hey Hammer, it happens all over the world, all of the time. On a grand scale, my experiences were insignificant in comparison to others.

Hi Scott from Oregon, I unfortunately have to relive it to write it, probably not the healthiest thing for me to be doing but there are some benefits to unloading this stuff. I’m not sure what they are, but I’ll figure it out.

Hi Stucco, if you are what you “ingest,” I might very well be a doobie. I’m pretty happy I’m alive too. That alone is proof of the extent to which I’ve embraced the good and said adios to the not-so-good.

Hi Irene, thank you for your kind words. They say that in life, it is not how you feel about other people that counts so much as how other people feel about you. I try every day to measure up to those standards.

Hey Glamourpuss, I’ll never be able to forget what he did, but he has apologized and I have forgiven him for what he did to me. When I relive those days, especially when I write about it, I not only see the events clearly in my minds eye, I also hear the sounds. I’ll never forgive him for what he did to my mother, sister and brothers.

Hi Jazz, you know what they say, “if you just keep saying, it might come true.”

Hey Anne, thanks. Btw, I just returned from a blog holiday. I have a lot of catching up to do on yours and everybody else’s blogs.

Hi Mystic Wing, I have a lot to live for these days so I’m much more choosy about where I get my adrenaline.

4:20 PM, February 08, 2007  
Blogger Shimmerrings said...

Life is life, eh... first you live and then you die. Living should be full of all the good things in life... Joy, Faith & Hope, Love, Sunshine, Happiness, Laughter. Good job, Slag! You made it to the good stuff!

6:04 PM, February 08, 2007  
Blogger Cheesy said...

I for one am glad you broke that resolution.. welcome back.. you've been missed!
I have to say.. I thought I was the only one who got rolled down hillsides in oilcans! I can't tell you how huge I grinned at that... Im fairly sure thats why I have a hearing woe today lol.
I am glad you outlived your need for danger thrills my friend~~

9:58 PM, February 08, 2007  
Blogger Scott from Oregon said...

I still don't "get" the abusive father connection.

I've hung it out most of my life, but never once connected it to Pops...

Are we all wired THAT differently?

10:31 PM, February 08, 2007  
Blogger Soleilmavis said...

Nice blog

1:49 AM, February 09, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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春心阁 in English

9:53 AM, February 09, 2007  
Blogger Kara said...

I was going to write a witty and poignant comment but the fact of the matter is...I got up way too early and it's not going to happen.

So here's what: When and if your body finally collapses from all the decades of misuse (I use that term loosely) as it should have done years ago...I will get you a Rascal. But you have to let Jill drive it too.

11:41 AM, February 09, 2007  
Blogger slaghammer said...

Hi Shimmerings, I’m all about the good things these days.

Hey Cheesy, the oilcans were big fun. At this stage of life, I’ve outlived just about everything.

Hi Scott from Oregon, it’s the old “nature versus nurture” conundrum. If I were asked that question six months ago or six months from now, I might have a different answer than the one I’m about to give.
Personal Opinion: Child rearing methods do not manufacture traits or potential out of thin air. So I believe your attraction to risk is all you. That being said, genetic predisposition and environment are at war from the moment an organism becomes subject to outside forces. Examples of outside forces would be drug use, diet, and/or disease on the part of an expectant mother, child-rearing methods and so on. All forces have an effect on, but do not fix in stone, how a life will be lived
There are no shortages of people who blame their miseries on failed potty training. I think responsibility for success or failure as a human being shifts from the parent to the child as soon as the child becomes aware of the rules of cause-and-effect, and understands their obligations under those rules, or as soon as the child attains the right of self-determination, whichever comes first. In my mind, I assumed responsibility for my success or failure as a human being at the age of eight. I became obsessed with my inability to stop the violence and I went completely overboard with proving that I was not a weakling or a coward as my father so often assured me I was. As a parent, except for room and board, my father contributed nothing more than physical violence, insult and neglect. The most that I could hope for on a daily basis was neglect and believe me, I was more than happy to have that. That said, there was never a point in my life where I was not proud of with the person I was…at that particular time. I was always “well adjusted.” I could explain that contradiction but not here for obvious reasons. It has been the slow progression of emotional and spiritual (not religious) growth that has provided me the opportunity to apply the lessons that were given, but were not necessarily learned at that time. I judge my success or failure along those lines, not by how I give credit or affix blame, but by how my actions affect my family, loved ones, and the world at large.
These are all my own personal opinions. Bottom line, the post is what it is, your own life experience will provide the moral to the story.

Hi Soleilmavis, thanks for dropping by.

Hi Anonymous, yep.

Hey Kara, do they make tandem seat Rascals? If not, Jill can ride the handlebars.

12:51 PM, February 09, 2007  
Blogger nic said...

Hey Slag,
I've been reading your blog for a little while. I think you make a lot of awesome points. You are blessed with amazing insight. But this is nothing you haven't heard before.

I was just wondering today why it is that people seem to cling to everything that is miserable; why do they complain rather than look for the good or accept change? How miserable does someone have to be to want to spend all their time hating everything and everyone? I thought it was a simple quest to make up for the drama that their life lacks, but your answer makes a whole lot more sense. They want justification for a life that doesn't meet their (unrealistic) expectations and is therefore wasted.

I'm so glad you turned that corner. Good for you, and I mean that with the utmost sincerity.

And it doesn't suck to be me. I love reading what you put out there. I know it's not always easy. Thank you.

7:31 PM, February 09, 2007  
Blogger Scott from Oregon said...

agreed. but I do find it interesting that childhood trauma led you down paths that childhood trauma don't necessarily lead you down.

Kudos for shaking off the bad man on your shoulder and getting on...

That ain't easy.

9:52 PM, February 09, 2007  
Blogger Jill said...

No way! I'm not riding the rascal bitch seat. I get my own. And it's going to be pink with a matching helmet.

7:42 AM, February 10, 2007  
Blogger Whippersnapper said...

Yes, I did read to the end, and yes, it does suck to be me, but I can assure you the two facts are not in any way connected.

Listen, Human Chew Toy, I am not very good at writing serious things. Your posts are very powerful and tragic and leave me feeling absolutely overwhelmed. I really can't stand reading/hearing of children being abused. I am glad you broke the cycle of violence with the birth of your daughter. And also, I'm glad you found Jill. She is a treasure.

1:03 AM, February 11, 2007  
Blogger slaghammer said...

Hi Nic, that is one of the most frustrating things about human nature. Thanks for dropping by and I appreciate your kind words.

Hi Scott from Oregon, the human mind is a funny, and in some cases, a tragically flawed thing. I guess we do pretty well considering how unlikely it is that a blob of slimy, wrinkled up tissue can just keep cranking out the reality day after day.

My darling Jilly, the way things are going, it will probable be me on that bitch seat. Just make sure you strap me down tight with a few of those rubber bungee cords, I hate road rash.

Hi Whippersnapper, Jilly is my only proof I’ve done at least one truly great thing in this life. Going back go the day I was born, there is not one single event that I would change for fear of an altered reality that would not include her in my life.

2:54 AM, February 11, 2007  
Anonymous gledwood said...

Yes ... sounds like a most eventful past ... I'm sure I've come across your blog before, have I? I'm at don't know if you've heard of me but the hammer guy in your comments I've talked to before as well. Small world really, that's what I'm saying. Very small world. Never ceases to amaze me sometimes who knows who by what routes... did you ever see that film Six Degrees of Separation? That everybody knows everyone else by friend-of-a-friend-dom to the 6th degree? Hmmmm well...

7:51 PM, February 12, 2007  
Blogger slaghammer said...

Hi Gledwood, you’re freaking me out man, I though for a second you were going to tell me that we know each other outside of the blog world. But, that would be extremely unlikely since I live within four hours drive time from the service entrance to the fiery pit of eternal damnation, which is several thousand miles from the U.K., which makes it extremely unlikely that we might have crossed paths.

11:01 PM, February 12, 2007  
Blogger skinnylittleblonde said...

I left(or at least thought I did...anyway, I wrote) a big long comment a few days ago. I think childhood in & of itself can be very rough, through a knee-jerk angry father in the mix & it gets really bumpy. i am so glad that you were able to turn those jagged rocks in your childhood path into the great stepping stones that led you to where you are today.
As for being a human chew-toy... hopefully nowadays that is reserved for Jilly nibbling sweet-nothings in your ear.

12:32 AM, February 13, 2007  
Blogger Janna said...

I've just spent over an hour reading all these posts about your past. I'm overwhelmed by it all!
Your writing is very poignant and articulate. Stories like these reach in and GRAB a person by the heart, and they don't let go.
My own blog tends to be about light-hearted semi-humorous stuff; I enjoy it, but it seems so insignificant and petty in light of things like this.
Thank you for writing about this part of your past. I know it probably opened a few old wounds, but hopefully in the long run the catharsis will be worth it.
I'm so glad you have a good loving family now. You deserve that. You've always deserved that.
I'm going to go find a box of Kleenex now.

12:57 AM, February 13, 2007  
Blogger Sam, Problem-Child-Bride said...

Blimey. It's remarkable that you managed to turn it all around. I was going to say "Well done" but that sounds like a clumsy arse of a thing to say. But really, when I try to come up with something else I find I do really mean "well done". That's a hard road that you had to walk to get to here and it sound like it was pissing down hard rain on you mentally the whole way. With rocks in it and stuff. Bloody hell, that image of a wee boy poking his crusty eyes with the stripped down bone of his finger will be staying with me for a bit.

So. Well flippin' done on getting to where you are and not sounding like the angriest man in the town.

I'm curious and I want to ask where your mother was when your father was beating you and your brothers up? Was he heavy-handed with her too? Forgive me if that's just impertinent and rude. I know things are never quite as simple as the question implies. Feel wildly free to tell me to fuck right off with my nosy questions; I'll consider it my just desserts if these questions cross any lines.

2:15 PM, February 13, 2007  
Blogger Kara said...

Lordy, I was going to apologize for starting a family feud...but Slagamous played peacekeeper beautiful-like.

Though I could settle the whole thing by getting one a Rascal and the other a Hoverround. You could chicken race.

3:56 PM, February 13, 2007  
Blogger slaghammer said...

Hi Skinny, I hope I didn’t lose one of your comments, beta has been acting up a bit so it is possible.
I don’t think I’ll be writing any more of these types of posts, at least in the foreseeable future. I’ve done all I can do in the way of venting and it’s a pretty rough trip anyway. Maybe some good will come from hanging the ugly truth out there. I’m pretty vocal in my regular life about abuse and neglect but I try not to be a bore about it. Btw, thanks as always for your kind words.

Hi Janna, welcome to my blog. It probably seems a little over the top reading them all back to back. I’m actually not the type of person to dwell on the past but this is a blog and blogs do make it easy to do that. I’ll post something a little less weighty next time around. I think I’m ready to do some laughing anyway.

Hi Sam, the problem-child-bride, Thank you for your kind words. Your question is a fair one. My mother was raised in an abusive and demeaning environment too. She went into the relationship with my father unit with a severely damaged self image and a very typical West Texas idea of her place in life. While not physically abused as far as I know, she was dominated, manipulated and threatened to great effect. I have a snippet of a memory that I dredge up occasionally. I was maybe six years old, sitting on the edge of my parents bed in the middle of the day, watching my mother reading and scribbling. I clearly remember asking her what she was doing, she answered, “studying shorthand.” I asked her why and she said, “so we won’t have to live like this for the rest of our lives.” She rebuilt herself, built a business from scratch and finally divorced the father unit sometime around my fourteenth birthday. In many ways, her rise from the ashes became a template for how I would live my life.

Hey Kara, you’re going to end up buying a fleet of personal mobility devices if you keep that up. Make mine a hybrid if you don’t mind.

6:00 PM, February 13, 2007  
Blogger Sarah said...

Well, Slaghammer I am captivated. I love the way you write.I have never sat and read a blog post as long as this one, and maybe that's sad, but I don't think so.You seem to be an amalgamation of Garrisson Keelor/Lord of the Rings/Dave Pelzer.My writing seems woefully inadequate compared to yours. Happily there is a place for us all in the Blog World and I shall continue to visit and read. Please don't stop - go with what flows, be it encyclopaedic or not.

2:33 PM, February 23, 2007  
Blogger slaghammer said...

Hi Sarah, welcome to my humble blog. I’m glad you were able to put up with my marathon mumblings. Btw, thank you for your kind words but I’m certain that I would barely qualify to polish the boots of the authors you mentioned. Of course, that will not stop me from printing your accolades on hundreds of letter-sized sheets of paper and then using them as wallpaper in my little computer room. ;-)

11:03 PM, February 23, 2007  
Blogger Sarah said...

Print away! I can say more nice things if its a big room. Will that make me a published writer?! S

7:41 AM, February 24, 2007  
Blogger slaghammer said...

Hi Sarah, yes, that will make you a published writer.

3:13 PM, February 24, 2007  

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