Saturday, April 23, 2011

View Point

Because I grew up and lived most of my life elsewhere, I always called it a scenic overlook. In California those places are labeled "view point". To me that term is synonymous with point of view; something having to do with opinion and belief. Here, it is a point from which you can view the countryside.

But, Interstate 8 is known as The 8. Every highway with a number is known as The (whatever the number). I'm not out to change the local lexicon or anything else, just noting the difference in customs and culture. Maybe that will earn me a grant of some kind from the Department of Diversity. They must have a diversity czar. I'll check it out.

I can note the differences from place to place in how they refer to and deal with roads and roadside matters. For example, in Florida they had Slow Work Ahead, and it usually was. They also had Slow Children, poor little unfortunates. But, no child left behind, please, help them out!

Now that I think of it, there were slow children in other states too. No need to put that in my grant application. I need to check it out first hand to be sure.

What they don't know is the unusual people you meet at the View Point who have a very unusual view point. For instance, tonight, on my way home from the therapeutic gathering of those who have been somewhat where I've been, I stopped at the View Point on The 8. I do that often because I like the place, it is unlit, and usually deserted. A good place to clear your head.

At times, I've helped motorists in distress, given directions and generally had interesting interactions. Tonight was one of those times.

The young guy in the old Diesel Mercedes, who was working there all day on hydrogen generators had run his battery down by leaving the trunk light on. My usually trustworthy battery pack/jump starter/air compressor/12volt power source unit did not have enough juice to do the job.

Ever since my debacle in Indiana, some months prior to the Ballistic Tour, (and prior to the Tourmobile purchase), which involved boosting someone's truck and frying my little car's computer, I don't jump from a car with a computer. That covers most vehicles and certainly the latest Tour Mobile. However, I can't just leave a fellow traveler stranded. It is not a huge thing to disconnect my battery and boost off of that. Resetting the clock and the radio is not a big deal. So that is what I did.

We ended up talking about electricity, wind turbines, hydrogen generators and learning aids for autistic children for three hours. It was all interesting. The kid--I swore I'd never be one to call young adults "kid"--was full of enthusiasm and ideas. He has a four year old autistic son. The kid is doing OK, reportedly.

There were other things going on but why get into that?

The point is that I tend to strike up odd friendships in the middle of nowhere under unusual circumstances. Most of the time I never see the people again. I may check up on this one to see how a particular initiative goes. He claimed that after talking to me he thinks he can press forward, and he was feeling like he couldn't before our talk.

Enthusiastic people with ideas and creativity always get my encouragement. It doesn't matter if the idea is perfect or not. I am not one to rain on the parade. I've found the refinement of the idea is a small percentage of the picture. The drive to push through and make it happen is the lion's share of what it takes. Refinements will naturally occur as you go. Some of this guy's ideas are not bad at all.

It was a good thing. I came home feeling OK for being me. Not many people are likely to float around at the overlook, jump start the needy, and encourage the pure of heart in their quest for creativity and fulfillment. That could cement any suspicions that I am a lunatic, but that's the way it is. Given the opportunity, there are people who find great relief in being able to tell someone who gets it what is really on their mind.

And don't hypothesize about any weirdness. That is not how I roll. I do attract the unusual like a magnet, but I do very well at only letting the right ones through the barrier. Like the guy I gave a ride home from the Mobile station who had me come upstairs and play harmonica for his wife, and who made me watch ten minutes of Cadillac Records with them, then they both made me promise to rent it first chance I got (since I couldn't just stay there and watch it with them). Most people would not have given him the ride. He had bags of groceries and missed the bus. I thought he'd be OK. Even if I am white. See? It usually works.

If I read them wrong and get shot one day, I won't like it, but I won't regret the times I took a chance when I was right.

Cadillac Records was about Chess Records and a lot of it had to do with this guy, Little Walter

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Ballistic Mountain, CA, United States
Like spring on a summer's day


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