THE BLOSSOMING OF BRUNO BROWN

Recently we hosted a good friend who had just lost his Father.  I asked if he had done anything to disappoint his dad?  He said “…my brother took care of that”, alluding to a sibling who hadn’t missed a chance to embarrass the whole family.  Often.  

Another guest suggested his Father took him to a Klan rally.  Works both ways. 

Later I turned the question inward and out popped a latent event.

At 17 years old little league and pony league baseball were past.  Small town summers were “boring” and we now had those car keys.

Between puberty, time, and Pabst Blue Ribbon, one oft time goes astray.

Being 80 years, 1958 was a long time ago…memory fades.  Some moments of the “outing” are vague, some totally blank, some quite vivid.

There was no tryout for our football at my high school.  Anybody willing gets a suit.  Mine was way too big as I weighed 104 lbs as a freshman QB aspirant.  No other underclass men,  pre-puberty and starry eyed, made the first practice. 

We barely had enough to scrimmage.  I had no way to get to practice.  Now the seniors were driving hand me down Studebakers, Hudson Hornets, Kaiser-Fraziers, pickups, etc.   They gave me rides to practice, then to their other more mature practices.

Being new in town, these older guys were my early teen friends and teammates.  One they called Bruno.

Robert Worth Brown had gone noticeably unnoticed till adolescence. Puberty hit him hard.  He was among the very smartest kids the town had ever turned loose, yet he began to unravel.  Substance abuse they call it now.  Then it was mostly beer and concoctions he dreamed up from the drug store where we both played Fonzie.   Oddly enough paregoric and ammonia were just a squirt away from the soda fountain.

During the summer of 1958 and already finding new ways to occupy ourselves, Bruno (“Bobby”) was older, fearless, and creative.  Often I chickened out when he proposed creative adventures, fueled by boredom.  All the older guys cut me some slack, because of my age, and I was a preacher’s kid.  I did all the cussing and smoking I could,  but still I often felt I let them down, mainly Bobby.

As stated my now memory varies from vivid to vague to blank.  I vaguely remember that the following was initially my way to gain favor with these older guys.  Why my parents were out of town  I am not sure.  I am relatively sure the idea of a summer lawn party at the Baptist parsonage was my idea.  Bruno was impressed and embellished my imagination with visions of party lights, champagne, a jazz band, etc.  Someone on the “planning committee” suggested tuxedos. Go to blank.

I don’t remember the party only we had one, less some amenities.  I do remember after the party,  riding with Bruno who had realized he needed more to drink.  He of course knew where to access moonshine.  We headed at midnight to a man’s home.  After awakening the guy, Bruno said “…he gave me a contact in Biscoe (13 miles west).   30 minutes later, plus some bootleg blended whiskey, we are back on Plank road when Bruno sees a man walking on the road.

The town mayor ran a railroad cross-tie business.  His nephew was with us and recognized the walker as a cross-tie loader for his Uncle, the aforementioned mayor. 

“That’s Tootie “ said nephew , Charlie. so, we picked Tootie Simmons up, 250 lbs of tie loader, all black and half drunk.  Tootie piled in.

Vaguely we wound up at the parsonage.  Charlie slept in my mom’s bed.  I must have slept in the front room by the door bell.  It rang long and loud till I answered it.

‘Is Charlie here?  He was supposed to meet his ride back to Appalachian (State) an hour ago”! I   

went and got Charlie, but not the employee of the Mayor, Tootie,  who snored on the floor next to Charlie in Mom’s bed.  The town soon enough  would dig out the details.

The next week was agony.  When the confrontation? Who knew what? How in the hell did I   think this would turn out okay?  These fears fit the vivid category.

Strange?  Nothing mentioned for several days, a week, two weeks.  

In the third week a member of the church choir called me over for a private conversation.  She told me she was in the “beauty shop” when a customer asked My mom about the lawn party.  And she relayed some of the rumors.

Later I realized during this time period my dad was quite ill.  

I like to think my mom would do anything to protect my Dad.  He would have been so “disappointed” in me.

I think, too, my mom got a chuckle.

“ARGUMENT IS THE WORST FORM OF CONVERSATION”

I HAVE DECIDED TO NOT ARGUE ABOUT RELIGION OR POLITICS OR RACE OR WAR. THAT DOES NOT MEAN I DON’T HAVE OPINIONS RELATED.  WHAT I HAVE DECIDED TO DO IS TO WRITE DOWN HOW I FEEL FOR ANY ONE WHO IS INTERESTED IN WHAT I BELIEVE. THE ARTICLE “the manifest” ON MY BLOG BEST EXPRESSES CONCLUSIONS AND BELIEFS I HAVE ARRIVED AT LATER IN MY 80 YEARS.  DURING COVID AND REHABS I HAVE TRIED TO READ PEOPLE WHO SEEM TO SHARE HOW I SEE IT ALL.

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TO ACCESS THE BLOG AND ARTICLE GOOGLE “THE LITTLE GREEN BOOK of TENNIS “.    WHEN TO BOOK COMES UP CLICK ON THE TITLE.  THEN SCROLL DOWN TO THE 9TH ARTICLE,  “the manifest”.  t. parham

“…you see it from your side and I see it from mine.”  (Bob Dylan- One too Many Mornings and a Thousand Miles Behind. )  

SEARCH WARRANTS

“…you are right from your side and I’m right from mine.”   ONE TOO MANY MORNINGS by Dylan.

Both sides are amazing at arguing.  The problem is nothing changes or gets done.  BLACK LIVES MATTER say defund the police.   Really?

In Malcolm Gladwell’s latest book,  TALKING TO STRANGERS,  his chapter 11 (Case Study:  The Kansas City Experiments) describes the City’s  various attempts to lower the murder rate.  Much like many American municipalities.

Several plans,  or experiments, failed.  Two factors   were “coupled” that resulted in an approximate 50% success rate, compared to all others flat failing.  The police found the crimes were almost totally committed  in small, off the main drag streets.  The flaw with other experiments too often was the need for search warrants, to enter abodes.   Traffic stops did not require a search warrant.

Gladwell details the success of these methods in KC,  and  then in 300 other American police departments.

From  a  layman’s perspective:  It seems that the discovery of these police “successes” coincides with the pronounced rise of police/black conflicts.  So often sparked by the frequency of police arresting black drivers.

While the police would contend these techniques were a godsend to successful arrests,  were there police policies that created havoc among black citizens.   Are changes that both sides can make to make this an American “win/win”?

 

 

SCORECARD FOR JULY 31,2020

  1.   2 POINTS GO TO GOP.   LED LITANY OF OUR HEALTH EXPERTS BROWN NOSING TRUMP FOR ALL THE LIFE SAVING MOVES HIS BRILLIANCE MADE.
  2. .  MINUS 2 FOR THE DEMOS.  THEIR NEXT REP USED THEIR TIME FOR A NEW YORK TRAVELOGUE.  NO MENTION OF THE KEY POINT OF DEBATE TO COME.   NEVER LET TRUMP GET BY WITH HIS “HOAX” PERIOD THAT WAS AN ALL TIME BLUNDER,  COSTING 150, 000 (AND TICKING) AMERICAN LIVES.  P.S. IN FACT ALL GOOD MOVES THAT FOLLOWED SHOULDN’T BE HAILED AS GENIUS.  LEADERS MAKING THE RIGHT MOVE SHOULDN’T BE SURPRISING IN AMERICA.
  3.   TIME—5 POINTS.   IT IS RUNNING OUT
  4. .  SCIENCE (5O POINTS PLUS).  “MY GUT” – 0.   MY BET WAS ON A VACCINE, SOON.  FAUCCI HAS  SPOKEN TRUTH ALL ALONG.  VERY GOOD NEWS.                                        *******PS.  IT IS TIME FOR A FAUCCI CLIP OF ALL THE TIMES HE TRIED TO WARN TRUMP, ET.AL., OF THE TRUTH.  ONLY TO BE INSULTED, CENSORED, REBUKED.  THROUGH IT ALL HE HAS BEEN TOLERANT OF BEING MISTREATED,  IT IS TIME TO REVISIT  HOW DAMAGING  THE ADMINISTRATION’S BEHAVIOR WAS.

INFECTION

HOMO DEUS.  (by Yuval Harari)

=Biological knowledge x computer power x data is producing rapid change.  Data reveals truth, not religion or “my gut”.   Data can reshape and reengineer humanity.

“Mankind’s quest to upgrade humans to gods.”

Mankind has almost, and will, conquer the three remaining super problems–famine, plague, and war.=

Modern scientists have  known for a long time that microbes, not Russia, are our enemies.  Yuval Harari wrote HOMO DEUS years before Trump concluded that Covid was a “hoax”.    A vaguely veiled political gamble that culminated in 150 American deaths  (so far).   Our ‘wartime  president” who cut the budget item designed to combat just such an enemy, then squealed and squatted on the wrong strategy.  Paste out of tube.

Perhaps Harari will be proven correct about real and future dangers ( plaque, famine, war).   Right now  three are current major, humanity threatening problems:  Covid, Racism,  Trump.    We have less than 100 days to decide.   Trump has cast the dye.  The next four  (god forbid) will be much like his first four.   To cure infection you cut out the boil.  Flawed leadership cannot defeat covid or racism.

At 80 years of age I recently began  to ask what could I do to be helpful.  Never political, I have never given much money, preached for a party, put a sign up in the yard or on my car, etc.  And the truth is I don’t have a  “following”.

But I am an American.  a father, a grandfather, friend and grateful citizen who for the first time fears for it all.  I beg you all to help vote Trump out.

…by CODY CAIN (2016)

So what is Trump up to here in being so overly simplistic? Well, the conventional wisdom is that Trump is a demagogue who intentionally seeks to exploit the “poorly educated” by appealing to them with simplistic messages that in truth carry no substance.

Based on pure demographic statistics, and leaving aside the deplorable lack of ethics of exploiting others, Trump’s approach is grounded in a rational basis. The vast majority of Americans, approximately 70 percent, possess the intelligence level of only average or below, which is roughly at or below a high-school level. Only 10 percent of the population is regarded as superior or above. So Trump’s strategy seems apparent: Aim low to capture more people.

This is exactly what our Founding Fathers feared when they created this new system of democracy. They were concerned that an abominable candidate would come along and charm the masses of uneducated voters, and then the intellectual minority would be forced to suffer the imposition of an imbecile as their president.

It is scary enough to think that a presidential candidate of today would conduct a campaign specifically targeted at the millions of voters with fourth-grade mentalities.

It is even scarier to think that such a candidate is only one step away from occupying the White House.

 

CODY CAIN

JOHN STUART MILL

John Stuart Mill’s essay “On Liberty,” specifically this famous passage:

The whole strength and value, then, of human judgment, depending on the one property, that it can be set right when it is wrong, reliance can be placed on it only when the means of setting it right are kept constantly at hand. In the case of any person whose judgment is really deserving of confidence, how has it become so? Because he has kept his mind open to criticism of his opinions and conduct. Because it has been his practice to listen to all that could be said against him; to profit by as much of it as was just, and expound to himself, and upon occasion to others, the fallacy of what was fallacious.

TRANSPARENT

“Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel”.

“Nero fiddles as Rome burns.”

“The Emperor wears no clothes.”

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Senor, senor, let’s disconnect these cables
Overturn these tables
This place don’t make sense to me no more
Can you tell me what we’re waiting for, senor?
(Dylan—SENOR)
*******
Bury the rag deep in your face
For now’s the time for your tears.
Dylan—HATTIE CARROLL
******
While one who sings with his tongue on fire
Gargles in the rat race choir
Bent out of shape from society’s pliers
Cares not to come up any higher
But rather get you down in the hole that he’s in.
IT’S ALRIGHT MA (Dylan)