Monday, October 3, 2011

Pack Predators

When you consider the fact that they are grown men, you have to wonder. I guess that goes for more than Just Hell's Angels, but that is what brought it to mind. As soon as I wrote that, though, my mind strayed to the gang of longshoremen that vandalized a place of business in Washington state because they think it is their God given right to tell people who to hire. The ones hired were union, too. That's off subject, but the same lowlife character and victim mentality.

The victim syndrome runs rampant just about everywhere. First you define the group, then convince them they are being abused in some way by whatever enemy you define, and all of a sudden normal inhibitions and morals go out the window because they convince themselves the enemy deserves whatever mischief can be brought upon them.

Many aberrant groups set them selves up to be victims by purposely intimidating people who don't run in gangs like a pack of dogs. Then if people give them a second look or vacate the vicinity they've soiled, the dogs bark in complaint and defiance. They pretend they've somehow been wronged so now you have no rights in their tiny little minds and that makes you fair game for their sadistic thrills.

I've seen plenty of bikers and motorcycle enthusiasts here in California. If they wear colors, it usually says something like, "Lawyers and Accountants with Hogs". I made that up but that gives the sense of the thing. Just people enjoying bikes. Not sadistic idiots who run in packs to bother everyone else and bolster their warped egos while compensating for some deficiency or other.

Today I saw a lone motorcyclist at the View Point wearing Hell's Angels, California colors. Colors means the obligatory leather vest or jacket with the gang's name and logo. There's plenty of ritual and rules that go with bike gangs and colors, but that's all I know. I don't respect them enough to remember any of the details.

It crossed my mind that it is a good thing that I do not carry a firearm. As I looked at the guy and considered what his proudly worn signage represented, I thought it would be good enough for the world if someone just shot him unceremoniously. I still think that.

I remember many years ago when Hell's Scumbags went down to Florida, in big numbers of course. (just an aside but this guy is the only lone Hell's jerk I've ever seen. I've never seen them ride solo. Two or more at least.)

Anyway, I saw them enter Rickenbacker Causeway which is the highway on and off Key Biscayne. It is a toll road and you had to pay a quarter at that time. They made as much noise as possible and rode through and on the curb throwing change at the girl in the toll booth. Just throwing it and laughing. For one thing, metal can hurt, and for another they knew they were making life tough for her and scaring her. I'll bet there was close to a hundred of them. A**holes!

During that same general time period they had gone to south Dade county, near Homestead, FL, I guess, where there was a lot of farming. This is before Miami spilled so far south and west. There was a migrant worker camp in a remote area, as the farmland was rural. They rode through raping, beating, destroying the shacks for no apparent reason. Just a pack of aberrant humans preying on those they saw as weaker than themselves.

Right about that time they grabbed a young woman, maybe only a teenager, from somewhere in South Florida. I guess they did the usual rape and humiliate, and left her nailed to a palm tree near W.Palm Beach. Literally nailed. They actually hammered nails. Glamorous, aren't they?

When I was in college in NC, friends of mine went to a huge annual event called the Fiddler's convention. It attracted all kinds of families and people. Big deal where tons of people camp and enjoy music, come for the day or the weekend, whatever. I didn't make it.

Hell's Angels did though. They came in tractor trailers and unloaded their dumbass bikes when they got there. Of course they did so with much pomp and circumstance and noise, according to reliable sources. They also roped off the area they claimed as their own after making a few people move their campsites. One unfortunate college age kid leaned on their holy rope. Several of the Hell's Vermin beat him to a bloody pulp.

I had brushes with Hell's Angels wannabes and did not get beat to a pulp. But it was the first time I ever seriously thought about killing. That bunch had attacked innocent people in Tallahasse before I arrived at a party back in my FSU days. Long story, but the short of it is, I hate biker gangs.

My NC college pal, George, claimed he knew how to make an approximation of napalm. We were hoping the Hell's Douchebags were going to make the Fiddler's convention again. I was going to rent a little Cessna and we were going to fry them. I was pretty skilled at low level flying, slow flight, etc. at that time. I flew Piper Cherokees and such as well, but nothing fit like a Cessna 150. I liked it even better than the four place 172 and such. It was just a thing I could drive very well at one time.

Anyway, we didn't ever do it, but I guess I might have if money and things had been no object. Even now, if someone were to firebomb a group of Hell's Angels or Outlaws or other gang that feeds on decent people, I'd applaud them. Gangs of any color or type whose only goal is violence and degradation of life should be wiped out. Wipe out one such cesspool without consequence or remorse or the media lamenting about what made them vile creatures to begin with and how society is to blame, and I imagine fewer people would be inclined to sign up.

Much of what fuels gangs is that psychoanalysis bit that paints them as victims. They have their gang family who protects them against the evil world. They pretend to be about freedom, but they only enjoy the freedom of violating the rights of others.

Lots of punks buy into that. One obvious example is the practice of playing what I'll loosely call music so loud that you can't escape it in your own home or car. That is a form of assault. Freedom to listen to whatever music you like does not give you the right to force your neighbors to listen.

I like motorcycles just fine. Hell, I like leather jackets and clever logos (although I prefer not to have logos on my clothing). But I do not like groups of people who have to run in a pack and who do nothing but bring misery to others. Grown men, often even over the age of forty go running around playing badass looking to intimidate people like grade school bullies. Now why would anyone care if someone blew them away if they found these creeps on the lawn, or just in their sights?

Maybe I am saying we are victims of gangs of various types. My thinking is that we are not victims if we don't allow it. And I don't think I'm suspending values.

Observations and I've Been Thinking; part 10232011

There I was, don't remember exactly where, but I was there thinking. Then two different voices from two different times in space were recalled simultaneously.

Both were remarking that I could be making things, like boxes, fountains, or combinations thereof, since I have done such things and the results were unusual and well received in certain circles. Both voices were people who believed I had some degree of talent and thought my creations worthy. My own self defeating, and self criticism tends to cause me to believe these items are no good, never sell, blablabla.

That really should be one of my fallback safety nets, and I ought to put time in on it every week because I've been carting around materials forever; roll of copper sheet, some copper tubing, tiny motors, a pneumatic switching device which is just a cool thing to have and was used in testing the pneumatic operators on my cotton dust eaters many years ago when I was a young punk inventor kid.

I was kind of ticked at critic JT for comments about my writing and other things, but I am pretty sure the spirit of the assertions was well intended and had merit. For awhile I was perturbed because I felt inhibited in writing anything. What will critics think? I got over it, and backed off enough to see the point. Still ticked but that's because I prefer any suggestion, observation or thought concerning anything about me to be sugar coated.

Otherwise I have to go through the process of anger, regret at being angry, analysis of what made me angry and, finally, to the point of deciding if the offending point had merit or not.

Something recently happened which made me think the comments regarding my manner of speech had slight validity. Much of it doesn't because I know people who never concluded from the way I talk that I am a dumb ass.

However, it is interesting that people who know me through the written word first generally seem to come into the friendship believing I have a brain. A certain type of person does tend to think I'm a dolt, as near as I can tell, if they only meet me verbally, and without any friend conducting the introduction, and maybe including a comment like, "John's not a dumbass hillbilly".. Like that limey jerk who is the Horse Boy's father. He obviously made a judgement and there was no turning back. But he'd be hard pressed to get any sort of positive letter of recommendation from me, so screw him.

What happened recently was that an old guy talking to me thought I was foreign from some kind British Isles or Indonesia--I forget the place he mentioned. He said I phrase things differently. He is originally from the Boston area I think. I've always found I have more trouble getting through to northeasterners than southerners or people from the midwest.

You'd be surprised how much effort I put into working on the speech thing in the past. Certain situations must trigger a delivery which doesn't put me in the best light. Other times I know for sure that I'm on the game enough not to seem like a dullard. It is something I have to watch, and it is something that I can't always fix. Probably the way my brain works which makes stating a thought get in the way of continuing the formulation of the thought if I'm in conversation so I have to bounce back and forth between holding or developing the thought and stating it, while worrying that I've lost the person.

I'm not a fast talker and if I am not thinking about it I can be painfully slow by some people's standards. Other people don't tend to be that irked or else they resist butting in so the flow works and actually speeds up. Lots of people have trouble hanging to the end of the sentence or paragraph and try to finish my sentences for me. They very rarely guess correctly at where it was headed. It is so hard to speed it up, but I try sometimes or else give up and go silent. Just how my brain works.

That's the least of my worries but I know it happens. Probably part of what my brother innocently called the "it" that if you could get past, you'd find me to be OK.

There are people who have progressive muscular diseases that affect their speech, and I know that a lot of people assume they are not bright because they have such trouble talking. My situation is a very very mild form of that syndrome of perception. I have no specific disease, but am simply put together a little differently.

If I had not undergone so many neurological tests I would just assume I'm bad and no good. I may be that, but how I talk is not due to a deficiency intellectually. I'm not below average in that realm, and if I were it would not be a crime. Character is more important than intelligence. I'd like to sharpen both those things as much as I can. I'm lazy so I doubt I'll optimize in either area.

This went on too long.

I know one thing, when Sally and I get on a roll, I talk too much and go from this to that at a rapid pace and we come up with the most brilliant and hilarious of schemes. It is good to laugh. There were periods of time before I left Memphis when I'd go a month or more without laughing even once, and longer than that without the kind of laughter that takes you over until you beg the laugh gods to make it stop. Until I hit San Diego, I think I must have gone a year or three without a good belly laugh.

My friend K and my vet fixed that. K can put me hysterics sometimes.

When I write, I just think and write at the same time as I go***. It is easier to write without much hesitation than it is to talk, but I still think I am an ace at public speaking. Because I am. Probably because it is one way and I don't get so distracted. And it is a performance which is dandy. You can gage the audience interest and reaction and work the room like that. I'm not one for a lot of audience participation whether in the crowd or on stage. They are to supply positive reinforcement and enthusiasm only. I hate when someone on stage wants you to do this or that. On rare occasions it is cool but mostly I am not into it. I don't pay to do your damned show for you.

Still, I have to say, that Boston guy was the first to ever wonder if I was a foreigner or raised by some tribe on a island in the ocean. He at least didn't ask if I was a cannibal.

***all the edits are because I catch dyslexic things and missing words and the wrong no/know and such. Sometimes I decide to add stuff that comes to mind when I look at whatever I said. I have to look at it to know because I don't know in advance and don't usually remember the details.

Parallel Things

It's natural and kind of funny how people are always looking for an explanation of how things work. Maybe their versions of a unification theory.

You get people who think they know all about the levels of life beyond this life, people who know there is nothing beyond this, those who are sure the theory of evolution explains origin of all life, and the ones who know what God is and thinks, etc.

It comes in all shapes and sizes, and the common thread is that they think they know what they can't prove one way or another, although some ideas don't stand up to any test whatsoever.

I know that it certainly feels like there are more dimensions to the thing than just 4 or 5 or so. But I can't prove it or justify my feelings on that. The closest I can come to it is proving by experience that you can't discount the factor of the unknown in predicting almost anything, and those who think they can suffer for it sooner or later. That is why things are designed to hold more weight than their rating indicates; things are engineered for certain limits, and designed to exceed those in order to account for the unexpected.

It feels to me like I bounce between states of reality as if there really is a parallel universe, or more than one, and I somehow slide between them. It even seems as if I left my original one and never have returned. It's OK, no need to cry for me, Argentina. Now that I know the fastest stuff around may be neutrinos, I'm thinking of getting a neutrino suit and flying into the past or the future. With luck, I could even visit the present from time to time. That would be a new one.

Then again, all of it may be just a form of sleep disorder. Or it is possible that I was right when I first found myself in Memphis and suspected that I died and was stuck in some middle realm between heaven and hell or maybe a holding tank waiting my term to reincarnate. It just hasn't felt like things have been quite as I remember they should be from that time on.

On a day like today one could easily believe he was a visitor in heaven as far as the weather and scenery go. Maybe it is a test. My challenge is to see if I can avoid wasting the heaven experience. If I were thrown into heaven would I still procrastinate and feel like an outsider and still be stuck? So far, the answer appears to be "yes".

That is worth considering. What is the point of heaven if you don't change the mode of behavior to make it worthwhile? Things require one to be responsible if they are going to be well utilized.

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


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