Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter

Wednesday, June 30, 2004

A good friend from work forwarded this to me yesterday. I'd really be interested to see what comments this generates, so if you have any feelings about this, please leave your comments at the bottom, (I promise I won't slam anyone for their opinions)...

This is not very long, but very informative. You have to read the catalogue of events in this brief piece. Then, ask yourself how anyone can`take the position that all we have to do is bring our troops home from Iraq, sit back, reset the snooze alarm, go back to sleep, and no one will ever bother us again.
In case you missed it, World War III began in November 1979... that alarm has been ringing for years.

US Navy Captain Ouimette is the Executive Officer at Naval Air Station, Pensacola, Florida. Here is a copy of the speech he gave last month. It is an accurate account of why we are in so much trouble today and why this action is so necessary.


That's what we think we heard on the 11th of September 2001 (When more than 3,000 Americans were killed -AD) and maybe it was, but I think it should have been "Get Out of Bed!" In fact, I think the alarm clock has been buzzing since 1979 and we have continued to hit the snooze button and roll over for a few more minutes of peaceful sleep since then.

It was a cool fall day in November 1979 in a country going through a religious and political upheaval when a group of Iranian students attacked and seized the American Embassy in Tehran. This seizure was an outright attack on American soil; it was an attack that held the world's most powerful country hostage and paralyzed a Presidency. The attack on this sovereign U.S. embassy set the stage for events to follow for the next 25 years.

America was still reeling from the aftermath of the Vietnam experience and had a serious threat from the Soviet Union when then, President Carter, had to do something. He chose to conduct a clandestine raid in the desert. The ill-fated mission ended in ruin, but stood as a symbol of America's inability
to deal with terrorism.

America's military had been decimated and down sized/right sized since the end of the Vietnam War. A poorly trained, poorly equipped and poorly organized military was called on to execute a complex mission that was doomed from the start.

Shortly after the Tehran experience, Americans began to be kidnapped and killed throughout the Middle East. America could do little to protect her citizens living and working abroad. The attacks against US soil continued.

In April of 1983 a large vehicle packed with high explosives was driven into the US Embassy compound in Beirut. When it explodes, it kills 63 people.
The alarm went off again and America hit the Snooze Button once more..

Then just six short months later a large truck heavily laden down with over 2500 pounds of TNT smashes through the main gate of the US Marine Corps headquarters in Beirut and 241 US servicemen are killed.
America mourns her dead and hits the Snooze Button once more.

Two months later in December 1983, another truck loaded with explosives is driven into the US Embassy in Kuwait, and America continues her slumber.

The following year, in September 1984, another van was driven into the gate of the US Embassy in Beirut and America slept.
Soon the terrorism spreads to Europe.

In April 1985 a bomb explodes in a restaurant frequented by US soldiers in Madrid.
Then in August a Volkswagen loaded with explosives is driven into the main gate of the US Air Force Base at Rhein-Main, 22 are killed and the snooze alarm is buzzing louder and louder as US interests are continually attacked.

Fifty-nine days later a cruise ship, the Achille Lauro is hijacked and we watched as an American in a wheelchair is singled out of the passenger list and executed.

The terrorists then shift their tactics to bombing civilian airliners when they bomb TWA Flight 840 in April of 1986 that killed 4 and the most tragic bombing, Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland in 1988, killing 259.

Clinton treated these terrorist acts as crimes; in fact we are still trying to bring these people to trial. These are acts of war. The wake up alarm is getting louder and louder.

The terrorists decide to bring the fight to America. In January 1993, two CIA agents are shot and killed as they enter CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia.

The following month, February 1993, a group of terrorists are arrested after a rented van packed with explosives is driven into the underground parking garage of the World Trade Center in New York City. Six people are killed and over 1000 are injured. Still this is a crime and not an act ofwar?
The Snooze alarm is depressed again.

Then in November 1995 a car bomb explodes at a US military complex in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia killing seven service men and women. A few months later in June of 1996, another truck bomb explodes only 35 yards from the US military compound in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. It destroys the Khobar Towers, a US Air Force barracks, killing 19 and injuring over 500.
The terrorists are getting braver and smarter as they see that America does not respond decisively.

They move to coordinate their attacks in a simultaneous attack on two US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. These attacks were planned with precision. They kill 224. America responds with cruise missile attacks and goes back to sleep.

The USS Cole was docked in the port of Aden, Yemen for refueling on 12 October 2000, when a small craft pulled along side the ship and exploded killing 17 US Navy Sailors. Attacking a US War Ship is an act of war, but we sent the FBI to investigate the crime and went back to sleep.

And of course you know the events of 11 September 2001. Most Americans think this was the first attack against US soil or in America. How wrong they are. America has been under a constant attack since 1979 and we chose to hit the snooze alarm and roll over and go back to sleep.

In the news lately we have seen lots of finger pointing from every high official in government over what they knew and what they didn't know. But if you've read the papers and paid a little attention I think you can see exactly what they knew. You don't have to be in the FBI or CIA or on the National Security Council to see the pattern that has been developing since 1979.

The President is right on when he says we are engaged in a war. I think we have been in a war for the past 25 years and it will continue until we as a people decide enough is enough. America needs to "Get out of Bed" and act decisively now. America has been changed forever. We have to be ready to pay the price and make the sacrifice to ensure our way of life continues.. We
cannot afford to keep hitting the snooze button again and again and roll over and go back to sleep.

After the attack on Pearl Harbor, Admiral Yamamoto said "... it seems all we have done is awakened a sleeping giant." This is the message we need to disseminate to terrorists around the world.

Support Our Troops and support President Bush for having the courage, political or militarily, to address what so many who preceded him didn't have the backbone to do--both Democrat and Republican. This is not a political thing to be hashed over in an election year; this is an AMERICAN thing. This is about our Freedom and the Freedom of our children in years to come.

Tuesday, June 29, 2004

It was the best birthday cake this year, and it wasn't even my birthday.
There's a lady at work who'll bake a cake and bring it to work anytime one of us has a birthday... She had such a hard time with mine over the past few months. Understand that she lives downtown and walks to the bus stop every morning, then she walks another couple of blocks once she gets to Independence. One time she was distracted and left it on the bus, another time she was chased by a pit bull and wouldn't you know it, the cake happened to end up in someone's open trash bin, and she sure wasn't going in after it, especially not with that dog still hot on her heels. I'd keep telling her, it was alright, she didn't have to bring one, after all that.. But she insisted. So today she brought the best coconut cake. Made from scratch.. Wow. Cool... Double wow.. and I would imagine Dun Laoghaire knows the rest of that story.

Friday, June 25, 2004

The Contentedness Of Dreams

Not the trivial grind of today.
No tv, no work, no hot shot
company reps, no politics...

Instead tonight I will wonder
and think-tank on faith in words
and dreams, wishing so desparately
to offer the one I love the relief
he deserves; solace to him when lost
in self doubt, I wish him restful
sleep with none of the troubled

Take away this anxious
time, replace it with alternating
currents of relaxation and excitement,
the contentedness of dreams, lightning
bugs caught across summer lawns and
saved in jars, blankets over picnic
grass, to clink plastic tumblers of
Vanilla Coke to chase thirst away
with a satisfying bite, walks in the
rain, for the rain's sake alone...

Just dreams, and such wonderful
dreams at that.

Monday, June 21, 2004

Spent Sighs And Whispers

There are times each day
you are terribly missed
in private, quasi-private,
with too many chances to be
alone with my wishes.

As in this moment when
the night promises endless
hollow, hungry hours, when
again I'm alone with my
thoughts and myself, to quiet
the deep sobs that catch
so complete, spent sighs and
whispers sent to some outward
intangible, always something
I can never touch.

Saturday, June 19, 2004

A Thistle For Nothing

They don't call it
a thistle for nothing,
purple spikes that are not
grown hydroponically, with
care and tending, but wild
along the roadside with the
freedom to spring up just
wherever they want.

Who in the world would not
pray for an option like that?

Most of them tiny, in scattered
bunches, but along the journey
there's always the few odd ones,
proud, tall and thriving in the
soil and sun, having soaked up
what delicious rain fallen
the night before
so that in the morning
they have slept well enough
to survive another day
of fumes and exhaust.

Friday, June 18, 2004

Well the trip to the library yielded some Bukowski books I had on order that got sent back... I looked around for another book in particular, The Fiery Cross by Diana Gabaldon, they didn't have that. So I looked around some more and found this:

So this is what I'm reading right now.
I would have gotten a good start on it earlier today while waiting on the bus home, but someone came by with a grocery store ad from the mail and couldn't help expressing loud absolute amazement at all the bargains, lol. It's a huge book, gonna take a while, looks awesome though.
It's my day off today... I don't have much going on. I'm stuck in this awful rut, and not really know the best way to go forward. I'm stagnating here in this town and I keep thinking all I really need to to is something drastic to perpetuate a change.. good, bad, but not indifferent. Inertia brings its own brand of hell. I have to do something.... anything. Pondering on the pro's and con's takes too much time, especially when it seems like that's all you've done for months. You eventually get to where you say, "enough." Its past time I stopped dragging my feet and do something to see some positive results. Some progress I can see in relation to what plodding away on this daily basis brings. I'm emo, I'm frustrated, depressed because I see no end to this right now. "Whah!" I'll get over it in time... Just a little bit of where my head's at today, that's all.

Tuesday, June 15, 2004


Everything here comes with
a thousand words.
His face could mystify sages
of ancient times, become a
wistful sonnet so full of
meaning, tenderness.
Eyes much more than windows,
God only knows how it's a
day's work to look into,
or ever find them.
Keeping mindful of visions
that ever holds those stars
adrift, clear.
Watch how they glitter,
coat the mountain breeze,
the air so thin and pure here.
Just these short hours under
the night and the breathing
is easy, sighs so fulfilling.
Look at him sleeping, so content,
he has a beautiful soul.

Sunday, June 13, 2004

Today The Metaphor Is Free

And I could spend hours each day
scanning these pages for the one
poem so delicious I could
devour it whole.

Where these words have a mind
of their own to wrap tight into,
enough to feel the pulse,
surrounding heat beyond the heat
of summer.

A page where just the breath of
speaking can toss clouds shifted
by a humid breeze, change images
like erosion of sea to sand
where I bury continual hurts,
watch as they are washed away
to make room for something brighter.

Saturday, June 12, 2004

At last communication, Laura and her dad were on their way back from Fargo, and she has finally resumed the trip back home. They should be back in town sometime tonight.. Well, what a trip that turned out to be. Somebody should write a letter to the MTV show, Pimp My Ride and have them fix up the entire car for her, for as much she's been through with that fool thing.
I went out with some friends from work last night. Started out at this Mexican restaurant just up the street. Palomino's (Decent food, and pretty reasonable) From there, went to another place with a DJ, celebrated a co-worker's birthday. I kept having to tell her 40 ain't so bad.. I don't think she was all that convinced, though. Anyway, I had a good time there, I haven't been out like that in quite a while.. but as much fun as I had, I don't think I'm gonna be doing it again anytime soon. I'll be starting my 2nd job next week so I'm going to be more appreciative of my days off and spending that time to myself, doing the important things like laundry, writing, errands, cleaning house, writing, grocery shopping, writing, and writing.
I slept in today, then went to get some supplies at Wal Mart, and was wanting to get to Barnes and Noble.. but I got such a late start, plus having to wait on the bus.. I didn't think I'd make it back in time for the last transfer. Bus went right past the bookstore too :( So, later for browsing the poetry section, maybe next Friday if I have the chance.

Wednesday, June 09, 2004

Boredom Falls In Canada

They rolled up the sidewalk
precisely at 7 p.m. last night
and in the blink of an eye
what little there was is now
already shut down.

So much for the middle of this
Odessa-like nothing, the space so
much forgotten, lost in Gladstone.

Tennis shoe heels like two pogo sticks,
mad as a March hare in June
when the crow flies, and now you're
skipping down the street like the
gay guy in Jackass the Movie,
regardless of the strange looks
from those two kids on bikes.

Still not taking pictures of the
maple leaf, the empty gas station,
the darkened restaurant and grocery
store, walking, walking who knows where?
Its all for the sake of exploration,
and well you know, years from now this
will all be the source of laughter,
good times, still good times.

(Something for my daughter, who's stuck in Canada at the moment.)

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

Would you like some good news first or maybe the not so good news? Ok, and now for something completely different. I was hired for the perfect 2nd job I was hoping for. I start the 14th of this month. Perfect because its as close as my other job as I can get, right across the street.. and it'll still be daylight when I get off, which is good. I'll still get to see the light of day on my own time :D
My daughter's been in Canada last week, visiting a friend. I call this the trip from Hell. I swear she's had soo much trouble (car trouble) since the very beginning. I won't give all the details, but for the duration, it's been one thing after another. Well, now she's on her way home, and this thing happened yet again. So last I heard she was still waiting on assistance (after she called them a second time and found out they were headed in the wrong direction) How's that for an outfit who's expertise is roadside assistance? Lol. I will keep updates on this, till she gets home.. as I've been doing on my Xanga site, since most of her friends read that one... I was keeping them posted on the trip when she didn't have access to a computer. I suppose this is all for now... Unless I have some thunderbolt of inspiration in the middle of the night, and I'll have to get up to furiously post online... provided my son isn't hogging the keyboard then..

Sunday, June 06, 2004

Well, it was a good day at work... No big shots or supervisors to get in the way of doing a job; in fact, one of them is on vacation for the next two weeks and we can all work without being spied on. And for once, they didn't short us on the linen this time (however, I'm still going to have to call tomorrow for some empty carts for us to use) They guy even came and took the dirty linen on time for us... which brings me to the close call I had this morning. Just outside the door to the dock, there is a long ramp to the right. I was sitting on the bench, and there were two other co-workers further down, at the end of the ramp. I just happened to look up and there was this cart full of dirty linen headed straight for me. Somehow it swerved and hit the wall next to the bench, but as soon as I jumped up, here comes another one. Luckily this one wasn't going all that fast so it could be stopped with no problem (or injury). Well anyhow, I counted that as enough excitement for the day, lol. At least it broke the monotony of an otherwise boring day. When things start going too smooth, it would seem the "gods of the "workday" like to keep us on our toes.

Friday, June 04, 2004

Flip Side OF The Void

Ask how there can be such
vague comparisons in the
search for something valid
and meaningful within.

Have you read forever,
whatever there may be
to seek, called upon words
to find more questions
in the answers?

What is your outcome now?
If my wishes owned a vision,
dreams a voice, I would see
and hear a comforting tone
that sounds strangely like his.

Thursday, June 03, 2004

I spoke to my old boss again yesterday. She called me and asked if I still wanted the part-time evening position at the Groves. So I guess tomorrow around 9 a.m. I'll put in the application, be interviewed and hired on the spot. Doris set it up like that, since she'll be on vacation. And after that... orientation on the 14th. So I guess I'll be actually start on the 15th.
I'm still not sure if I'm doing the right thing.. yeah, I need the money, and yeah I couldn't do much else right now without it. But am I effectively condemning myself to this place by taking this job? I've told myself a lot lately that if I don't do something about this rut soon, I never will. Is this a good step in the right direction, or just more inertia. I can't seem to figure exactly what this is going to do.. will I be asking myself everyday, "what fresh hell is this?" or will I be able to easily see that this is just what it takes to get what I truly want? And if so, how long does this have to take? I'm usually patient, but this is just the tip of the iceberg with the self-nagging questions.