Friday, July 31, 2015


"Race is totally overhyped these days. Black people need to get over themselves, it is all about class now, the haves and the have nots."

A character's comment in Chinamanda Ngozi Adichie's fiction book,


Trump is such a joke but the very idea that Americans support him makes me neuseus. Help! However, I have come to believe that one of our realities is that not all Americans care. What we have to hope is this extreme element that supports a certifiable ego maniac doesn't vote. It is my experience they don't. 

Calls to mind something the late Walt Rostow, a very astute political type, once said: a politician in order to to be successful, needs 50% for him. 35% are against everything. 15% are out to lunch. I think the percentages have changed, at least 25-40% are out to lunch. 

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Fred's Love Shined Stronger Than The Pain

Going to the Vietnam War was "the best gift in the worst package." (It taught love and appreciation for every moment once returned to the world.) 
Frederick Allen DaMert
July 5, 2946-July 17, 2015

Saturday, July 25, 2015


Every writer, to include one like myself where it is a hobby, relative speaking, sees everything as a story. A few weeks back, I went to a Memorial Service out of respect to my good friend, who knew the deceased. Basically, I had never seen anything like it. It was like a visit to the Star Wars Cafe. There really is no way to properly describe. Remember the scene, there's a two headed person at the bar, then one with six arms. Get the picture. 

Lots of stories about, let's call him, Roger. At first I thought, we'll make more out of Roger than he was which wasn't much. Some sweet stories, though. Actually wrapped around what a "good heart" he had which was true as I knew him. Some of the comments were slightly crude to say the least. The most crude came from a former girlfriend, the one who actually led poor, weak Roger down the primrose path. She told about their many fights, sex, drinking bouts; the biggest one had to do when she injured him (not be crude and say what). She told about the injury in graphic detail. 

My favorite NPR program is "The Take Away." John Hockenbury is great. So, what is our "take away" here. (The last thing I want to be is condescending). These are real people that live in a real world. 

So, what is the lesson learned here. If you could load up High School kids and transport them to view the living scene, it would be of inexhaustible value. Several examples of how drugs had made 30 year olds look like 70 year olds. Obese, no exercise, eating badly, abusing their bodies with methamphetamines. Losing their teeth. One female, maybe in her late twenties, could easily tell, before drugs,  "movie star looks. 

Poor "Roge" died a hundred pounds overweight in a camper with no electricity and no prospects for a future and no hope. What a "take Away." 

One very real positive "take a way" is that the Memorial Service was like an AA meeting. In fact, several began with, "My Name is John (example) and I am an alcoholic." The assembled group would respond "hello John. " One Harley biker in leather said something like this. "I feel bad about Roger. I actually went a few weeks ago to get him to go for a ride but he declined. I should have tried harder. I want to say this to you. I have been clean for a year. For 45 years, I abused drugs and destroyed my body. Drugs are a scourge and if you are still using more than likely you are going to end up like Roger. A POWERFUL MESSAGE. 

Wednesday, July 22, 2015


Recently, I bowed to one of the latest gatget rages and purchased a FITBIT. Mainly,  I want to check my level of physical activity. One possible problem, illustrated by a favorite story: Grandma gave her 12 year old granddaughter a book on "penguins." Her mother kept after her to write a thank you note to Grandma.  Finally she wrote, "Grandma, thank you for my book on penguins. However, it told me more about penguins than I care to know". Maybe "The FITBIT" tells me more about my health than I care to know. 


This idea is coming from my LYFT driver. Very talkative and possibly a "Trannie."  She immigrated from Israel to work as a project manager in the manufacturing industry in NY. 9-11 happened and changed everything. Eventually made her way to San Francisco. 
"What surprised her most about SF?" 
The homeless. How it is possible to be homeless in this land of plenty amazes her. (I get it when a quarter of the children in Americs are hungry. What the f..K.) "What do you like most about America?" The freedom, hands down. You can say what you want, have outrageous behavior and nobody is going to come and haul you off.  

Good lesson from a fellow "Merican"--told her to use Southern pronunciation, like the NASCAR guys. 

Sunday, July 19, 2015


Donald Trump putting the bad mouth on someone should elevate them to sainthood status. He is a poster child for loss of brain cells--the epitome of being mentally challenged. And, my apologies to the mentally challenged. Trump is a euphemism for "f..king idiot. " 

Besmirching John McCain who was in a prison camp being tortured while Trump is out fatcatting means Trump is a  f..king first class "draft dodger" (anyone who could have served during the draft but did not) Basically, I don't give a shit as Trump is simply a "good for nothing mother," any way you cut it. The media feeds off him because his idiocy is a story. It is a pitiful cycle and the Repubs,  in particular, ought to be ashamed. 

What really gets me is how a sorry asshole like Trump makes money/gets a TV show. We are the ones who pay attention to him and in reality, it is our fault.    bws

Friday, July 17, 2015


Now the Chattanooga shooting. I have always believed that we have to protect ourselves the best we can and go on with our lives. The military now knows: Recruiting Offices, Reserve Centers. From the first sign of violence, they have to be prepared and they will. Weapons, locks, vigilance. Other that that, not much we can do. Resignation. God bless us. 

Thursday, July 16, 2015

The Speechwriter

One thing I really like about the WSJ are the book reviews. Actually, if you skip over their biased editorials, it's a pretty good newspaper. I have not read the book, "The Speechwriter," but I will, based on the review. I have long had a little or a sick interest in politicians that are stupid, thinking that in the media driven world iin which we live, they can get away with daillances or most anything. Mark Sanders is one of those who tried. Stupid, along with generals I've known. I think what happens with politicians and generals is that they are told so often what they want to hear, they get to believing their own bullshit. And, in Sanders case, they keep electing him. 

I sure as hell am glad I am out of SC. When somebody says, "Don't you live in SC?" I quickly say, "Noway, NC and there is a vast difference to be sure." I also can say, "I just went to school there." 

The voters who put Sanders in are just as dumb, I think. God help us. Will be interesting to see what the author of "The "Speechwriter" has to say. 

Me, Earl and The Dying Girl.

I can hardly believe the numbers of people who have not seen this movie. 
Me, Earl snd The Dying Girl
Maybe it is the TITLE. 

The movie's story is not different in a sense of any themes on death and dying and grief. Kids in the movie were very clever, like most kids today. I liked it and the subtlety of it. 

Maybe a little too much psychobabble, pointing out what creates teenagers angst; not distracting, however. Rachel's mom was a character that could have been developed more, I think. 

Interesting and like many movies where the theme is of loss and sadness, what was different is that it was a "coming of age" film where teenagers suddenly are propelled into adult situations. The movie makers threw us a little off track by announcing Rachel was going to live and we settled in with the idea that she is going through a bad patch but will overcome. Guess what? It wasn't true. She died. 

As of late, seems that the idea of death/grief seems to be pervasive. Could be the media, the population is getting older. It is the theme of movies, TV programs. 

In fact, I used this movie as a kind of dealing with grief: my granddaughter (she saw the movie with me) and I were "honoring Evan;" (Evan is a good family friend who fought cancer for 10 very hard years). Lupe is a rising Soph at Boston U but back in San Friend doing an internship at the Dave Eggars program of tutoring marginalized kids in English and writing skills).

Evan recently died. On her own, my Granddaughter wore a beautiful black dress so she could  honor Evvan. Her attire represented respect. Talk about making an OPA proud. She looked so great. 

A last thing as your eyes are glazing over. I am not sure exactly how the "heaven" thing works although I believe in it and I find comfort in the fact that someone, like Evan, has, in whatever way it does work for him, has found peace.   God bless him, for sure, on his journey.     

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

I have fought a good fight. I have finished my course. I have kelp the faith. King Janes version if the Bible, Timothy 4:7

Our friend Evan died this am. Meg

Evan. He fought the fight. God bless him on his journey. jda

I think Evan fought so hard for life because he had a wife he loves and son he wanted to watch grow up and he knew if he didn't, he wouldn't even get that. Rah

I am so glad that I participated in "Cycle For Survival," raising money but also to honor Evan who was a "stand up" friend. 

Monday, July 13, 2015


A RIF (Reduction In Force)

A RIF IS WHAT USUALLY HAPPENS AFTER EVERY WAR. I am really ticked off, reducing the military, like we always do is not a simple process. The military has made promises and now they are breaking them, sorry MFers. 

What makes a RIF (reduction in force)  unpalatable is that the military makes promises to soldiers (Marines, Navy, all called soldiers--at least by me) Then along comes the RIF and the Generals/whoever (only interested in numbers) say to them, "f..k you very much. Thank you for your service. Goodbye." 

The civilian community has no real concept of the military and what it does. An example: Recently, I talked to the Mother of an AF nurse. The nurse/daughter just returned from a year in Dubai. Do most Americans even know that we have those like this daughter doing a dangerous job in Dubai? NO.

Sunday, July 12, 2015


If I hear one more comment on Harper Lee, I am going to throw up all over the reviewer. 

For us writers who labor producing our masterpieces, we see the bullshit. It is all about marketing. Let's just face that upfront. We get no interest as Harper Lee and related bullshit sucks the energy out of any real comments. 

 Most bigtime publishers, reduced to about a half dozen, are pretty much about money, I think. The sorry MFers. And to have to deal with Harper Lee's "Go Set A Watchman," which is at best, in my opinion, a mediocre book. Makes me want to have a drink. 

Most of us writers and small publishers grasped the idea that writing is a long way from a level playing field. We just cuss about the unfairness. F..k, we are envious/jealous 

Maybe I am just ticked off and want to know, "Why the f..k did Harper Lee bring down Atticus. He was a hero, a renaissance man. The lawyer that we could like. A principled man. Reminds me of my brother. What the hell, things like racial conversation--we have plenty of resources for that, think Charleston, Baltimore, Ferguson, we didn't need Atticus. I wanted a hero--they are few and far between. We want the old Articus, a man above the crowd. What the f..K. 


One of the very difficult things about death is that it is so final. You can't pick up the phone and call or see. They are in fact, gone. When we lose a good friend, it is a note to our own mortality. 
In this case If there has ever been anyone, dealt more bad blows, had to be BECKY JO. Too many to recount. Here are a few. Dad kills her Mom. Goes to live with Her Aunt, the original Cruelly deVille. Married, 2 sons. One commits suicide. 

I am not sure exactly how the "heaven" thing works although I believe in it and I find comfort in the fact that Becky Jo has, in whatever way it works for her, found "peace." Becky Jo, in High School, was the sweetest person. With my capacity to see us as we were, I can picture her at Dunn High in the best ways. 

As we went on to whatever we were doing, most of us lost contact. I was somewhere in the Army, when her son called me about his desire to consider joining the military. We were in contact for weeks. It was a great experience for me. Britt, I think was his name. I lost contact and the next thing I heard, he had taken his life. Depression probably. It was so sad. God bless Becky JO on her journey. 

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Jefferson Davis

While I was doing a blog posting, it dawned on me that my granddaughter, Lupe (Guadalupe) is named after the President of the Confederacy. DAVIS.  However, she shouldn't take it too seriously. My Dad was not much into the Civil War and once told me he had already named me when it dawned on him that the Prez of the Confederacy was named Davis (my middle name). 


Friday, July 10, 2015


Reducing the military to proposed levels is absolutely criminal. It is because in order to do it, the Army reneges on promises made to soldiers. Sorry MFers. 

Thursday, July 09, 2015


A lawyer friend from Spartambirg, South Carolina said the shootings in Charleston galvanized Americans who really care to do something meaningful. 

God bless them and truly this is a good thing. Was it worth the death of 9 good people. No, but we have no say in the tragic events like this. We cannot control a misguided mad man full of ignorance and hate. We can only react and South Carolinians did. They did what they could. It was a long time coming. But, the time came. God bless them. 

Wednesday, July 08, 2015

BE CAREFUL ASKING SOMEONE, how are you unless you are prepared for the answer.

I Hanging out at STARBUCKS. 

"How are you?" (Lady sits across from me at long table)

"How much time do you have" 

I smile. "How much do you need?"

"My friend just died." 


"He was seventy seven." 

"Had he been sick long?" 

"He lived a hard life. Wife stepped off a curb in SF, run over, killed. Two sons. One killed in auto accident. 
Second one died of AIDS. The couple in a great act of charity, adopted three brothers from alcoholic parents. They turned out awful." 



One of the things that has always appealed to me about California is how they weron the cutting edge, pushing the envelope, coloring outside the lines, whatever. Now, to not have an assisted suicide law is insane. And, to let the Catholic Church be the stumbling block is f..king double insane. 

Monday, July 06, 2015


Following along with the idea that for just once we would like to hear a politician or someone in power spew forth with an "I F..Ked up. Forget it. But, hope springs eternal. 

Captain Ahso was the pilot of a Japanese Airliner who landed his plane in the San Francisco Bay. His landing was so smooth that the passengers didn’t even realize it until they saw sailboats. When all the furor died down, the FAA had a hearing and Captain Ahso was the first witness. The interrogator said something like, “Captain Ahso tell us what happened. With all the sophisticated navigation equipment available to you, plus a clear, beautiful day, and you managed still to land five miles out in the San Francisco Bay? What happened?” The courtroom was quiet, all eyes were on Captain Ahso. Finally he said, “CAPTAIN AHSO FUCK UP!” There you have it.

Sunday, July 05, 2015


Wouldn't you love to hear some politician just for once say, I FUCKED UP. Forget it, it ain't going to happen. The tragic shooting of an innocent women in SF by a convicted 7 times felon, an illegal, just sad. The lenient policy, lack of cooperation between local and Feds: attorney general, Sheriff, Mayor, just about every fat, dumb, and happy political type, denying all. When they could simply say, "WE F..Ked UP."

Friday, July 03, 2015


Too good not to share. 

Shakespeare in the wilds of NC; what a deal. It conjures up all kinds of interesting images. I too was touched by Obama's eulogy and singing of Amazing Grace. Of course, it was all made possible by the victims families' forgiving the killer. What a wonderful, Christian act. And talk about taking the wind out of the Christian Right/conservatives' sails. How can they put a negative spin on that? Talk about the hand wringing and teeth knashing that must be going on in that quarter. Anyway, what a magnificent gesture. And, as I said, I thought Obama was terrific. 

And speaking of the Pres, his stock has to have gone up in the past week or so. Confederate battle flags coming down in state capitals, the Supreme Court's affirmation of the ACA and gay marriage, his eulogy, the establishment of a US embassy in Cuba and vice versa, trade agreements, etc. All of a sudden things seem to be going in the Presidents direction. About time as far as I'm concerned. 

And there is some hilarity going on too. The "Donald" declares his run for president and then immediately steps on his pecker big time. What a massive adverse reaction. One of the networks even pulled the Miss America Pageant. Couldn't happen to a nicer guy :). What an idiot. 

All in all an interesting, and perhaps very historically important week in our country's evolution. 

Hope all is well with you wherever you are. Have a great 4th of July weekend. 

Wednesday, July 01, 2015


KRecently I took s trip "around the battlefield" as Al Pachino said in "Scent of a Woman." My euphemism for "memory lane of where I grew up. " It was great, and I love to do it as a reminder of my roots. 

An example: I asked someone about the tobacco scene in NC. No small farms anymore but large tobacco conglomerates. When I was growing up, every farmer of any size had a patch of tobacco. It was a cash crop. I was about 6-8 years old. Most all my four brothers were home. None of them wanted to go with Dad to take the tobacco to market. I would.  It was a process. Before the market, the tobacco had been harvested, tied in neat bundles and then literally cooked (cured). 

At the market, the tobacco would be put in these big round baskets. The buyers would come by and place a price on the tobacco. Often, it was a low price that put the farmer in a bad spot. If he sold his tobacco for less, all that work went for almost nothing. If, in a rare case, the tobacco went for a higher price, Dad would be so happy. There we were on an emotional roller coaster. Dad, now, I understand, found great comfort in my presence. 

         This is tobacco in the field.