WORLD'S OLDEST LIVING BOY AT HIS EASE, 1956
Be very careful what you're instilling in your kids.
One day they might tell their stories to the world.
Words, language, storytelling... I learned from an early age that these things were powerful-- magical and important. Trying to express myself clearly is a never-ending quest. Leavening observations with humor is almost a compulsion. Here is a collection of rants, eulogies, gripes, fantasies, reminiscences, musings and assorted gushing and whining about a variety of things. Some of them aren't necessarily politically correct or G-rated.
Most of them tend to reflect my rather cynical take on things. If you find yourself easily miffed, or lack an off-kilter sense of humor, you are cautioned that it might be better for you to look elsewhere for sustenance. Try Reader's Digest, or the backs of cereal boxes.
Some of these pieces speak to the experience of --and changes wrought by-- quitting smoking. Many were written specifically for the "alt.support.stop-smoking" USENET newsgroup. They were undertaken as therapy as I dealt with the weird changes that the process of shedding an addiction wrought. It's impossible to adequately express the gratitude I feel for the people I met there, whose support and kindness helped me through those early days. These writings were done partially as my gift to them. It's the least I could do-- a quantity I specialize in...
Other pieces here are about family, friends, travels, jobs-- different situations I've encountered. Only one of these was done for hire, yet it-- like the rest of them-- is (necessarily) quite subjective. I hope that you'll find something amusing among them.
Jef. Hyde (August, 2021)
Learning to write. Oh, oh..!
Pop teaching me to read; Germany, 1955