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kitchen-4

“Huh glory!”

That’s what Robert said upon first seeing him in Bailey’s office that morning. Bill could never, would never forget.

Robert was roly-poly, a dark, dark-chocolate teddy bear. He was all in burgundy, head down to his feet. Only things not burgundy were his shoes. They were black dress-type shoes. Velvet, floppy, wide-brimmed hat, casual leisure suit, sport-coat-like jacket, broad-collared shirt, collar set outside the jacket, ordinary matching men’s slacks, no cuffs: all burgundy, dark wine, except for the shirt which was lighter, almost pink.

“Lord have mercy.”

That’s what he said next. Then he put his arm around Bill, drew Bill to him and said “Let’s go, baby.”

Robert led Bill down from Bailey’s office in the probation department section on the fourth floor of the City Hall Annex to an old fifty-four Ford woody station wagon and drove him to Suburban West. During the ride he explained that Bill would be a busboy at first, but as soon as possible he’d get him into the kitchen. That was the plan, plain and simple.

We plan, God laughs.

Bill remembered when they arrived. Robert led him into the back through the kitchen door. Once inside the kitchen, after the screen door had slapped shut with its usual clap-slap, he put his arm around Bill, called everyone around, said “This my baby so make sure you take care of him.”

And so it began. That’s how it began.

Alfreda, the prep cook and daytime pantry woman, Henry Lee’s wife, as Bill would later discover, was first up. Bill put out his hand to shake hands with her. She drew him to her, hugged him, kissed him on the cheek.

“Robert told me about you,” she would tell him several hours later, after Robert had told them all this was the nice white boy offered him the cigarette that day – Lord have mercy!

Not even a full week later, he met Mary, that was after he accidentally spilled soup on the customer who was so rude to the waitress he’d had to defend her. In the process of doing that, he’d gotten taken off the floor, into the kitchen as the pot washer. And that was just the first few hours of the first day.

That’s how the story went. You couldn’t make this stuff up without God in the picture, Bill thought. What was the statistical likelihood, the odds, that the person giving him a job would be the same person he’d seen in the City Hall Annex when he’d gone to see Bailey, his PO? What made him stop and offer the man a cigarette, virtually the only thing he had to offer in this whole world? What were the odds of them both having the same PO?

Odds nothing, Bill thought. God. God works His ways behind the scenes.

Maybe, he thought later that first day, when he was elbow-deep in pots, his arms and hands red, raw, scalded from hot water, maybe God just didn’t want me out on the floor in front of people. He could still remember how nervous he’d been out on the floor, his head filled with self-chatter, insecurity, fear and self-consciousness.

Goddamn.

Eleanor was the first waitress he would enjoy. He didn’t ask for it, wasn’t looking for it. The customer had been so rude to her, so crass, he’d just done what was natural to do under the circumstances. For that, she viewed him as chivalrous, protective, nice. And wasn’t but a short time later that she happily, willfully, gave herself to him.

You always remember your first crew. That’s what Mary said.

He met Mary the following Monday when Robert  told him that they needed a broiler cook on the East side and they were going to train him.

Huh glory and Lord have mercy.

Pick up a copy of  all my works here:  By Peter Weiss

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quill-pen-300x300I really don’t talk about myself very much, at least not in non-fiction. Much of my fiction is somewhat autobiographical in that it deals with settings (mostly kitchens) that I know and people I knew along the way. The escapades of these people as depicted by me happened or didn’t happen and either way, the way I see it, that’s okay.

If you read the “about me” part of the blog here, you’ll see I’ve been writing since I was fifteen. It started one night when I was at my friend Richie’s house. We were high and he was playing music. He had these humongous speakers. He also had a lock on his bedroom door. We were locked in listening to music and smoking weed.

Boom!

Out of the blue it came to me, just popped into my head, a line to start a short story. I repeated it over and over again like a mantra so as not to forget it, told Richie I had to go home. I may or may not have said to him that I had to write a story. I don’t remember. But I do remember repeating that line over and over all the way home, getting home, going down to the basement where my desk was, and writing.

I was fifteen. I was a writer. I knew what I wanted to be in my life, for my life. In this regard, I was and am most fortunate.

I’ve never “made it” as a writer. Many things have come in the way, and then there’s me, yes me, who has always been in the way. Fear of failure, fear of success, self-doubt, insecurity, poor self-esteem, a warped sense of love, fear of loss, co-dependency, substance abuse—these are some of the culprits. And then there was having to make a living on top of it all. Contrary to the narrative the Despicable Democrats, socialists and mainstream media, Pravda USA, attempt to continually advance, not all whites have privilege or money or influence or need to be feared.

That narrative, by the way, is a good piece of bull shit. But as the old saying about throwing out the baby with the bathwater goes, there are some elements of truth and reality in that narrative even though the narrative overall is mostly fake. Like the clowns and jesters in Shakespeare, it’s good to hear what they say. There’s always bits of truth.

When I was teaching—I taught for more than thirty years—I used to tell my students to go after their dreams so they did not get to old age filled with remorse and regret. I wonder. I have a lot of wonderings. I can’t say I have no regrets and I can’t say I have no remorse. But I can say that even though I haven’t “made it” as a writer, I have taken writing, which was my dream, with me all the way through so far. For that I am ever thankful.

So I sit out here. Where we live is pretty idyllic, I must say. It’s quiet almost all the time. It’s “country” and I can look up at all the trees and see simple natural beauty. Even in the New England winter, snow after snow, except for having to negotiate the snow it’s postcard picture after postcard picture.

Life is a marathon, not a sprint. Man is by nature selfish and greedy. I fear those Despicable Democrats, in their anti-Trump hysteria, have lost sight of the finish line, and egged-on by the profiteers controlling Pravda USA, our mainstream media, I fear they almost believe their own bull shit.

On second thought, no. They are profiteers as well, interested in money and power for themselves.

They all ought to stop and look up at the trees!

Pick up a copy of  all my works here:  By Peter Weiss


Image result for despicable democratsInterestingly, I think there are several prominent people who really do care (about you, about me, about us). One of them is AOC, Ocasio-Cortez, believe it or not. I don’t agree with most of her politics and I don’t like a lot of the ways she goes about things — what she says and more. But I think she’s sincere and I think she cares.

Unfortunately, she’s young, naïve and not well-informed, so in my book she gets an A- for sincerity and caring and much lower grades for content and substance. As regards behavior, she surely gets a D there.

Many of you might stop reading when I write the next few lines, but so be it. I also think President Trump cares. I think he cares about the country, about our economy and our standing in the world, and I think he cares about the American citizens. I agree with some of his politics and I think, looking at the big picture in the world, he’s got a realistic view of the direction America should be moving in and is trying to steer us in that direction.

That said, quickly, I think Bernie Sanders is all wet totally, but I think he cares. After him, no matter what they say, there’s not another prominent lefty I trust in the slightest or that I think is sincere or honest. As far as I’m concerned, the last sensible Democrat was Joe Lieberman and he was smart enough to retire.

I don’t have much more faith in the Republicans. In fact, the longer I’m alive and the more I see, I don’t have much faith in humankind at all. Our political class, the American Politburo, as a whole, is no better than the old Russian Politburo of the cold war, and America would do itself a big favor if it made term limits  mandatory all around. It’s clear that when we’ve come to what we’ve come to in this country, in politics and in the divide in our society, we need to throw the circuit breaker and shut things off for a bit. No better way to start doing this than by putting in term limits.

And so it goes.

Especially here and especially now I prefer not to get hung up on the who’s-to-blame game. The Despicable Democrats, aided and abetted by Pravda USA, the mainstream media and social media who are nothing more than shills for the Despicable Dems, would have you believe it is Trump, would have you believe Trump is every “ist” in the book known to people-kind. Along with their Hollywood friends (all multi-millionaires so fashionably fond of trashing the very capitalist system that made them multi-millionaires) they tell us over and over again, and over and over again and again, every day day after day that it’s Trump who’s dividing us.

I think they doth protest too much.

I think it’s way too easy to simply write it off that way.

The divisions we’re seeing in American now, probably much more overblown and over-dramatized by the media than they actually are down in the trenches where most of us live, surely pre-date Donald Trump as a presidential candidate and then as a president.

Following the money would be a good idea here. Checking out who’s been doing what since when, checking out who actually benefits from the divides in our country, who benefits from keeping the divides prominent and in the everyday narrative — that would be a good way to start to see what’s fact and what isn’t, what’s historically true and why. It might also offer some insight as to how badly the American people are being hoodwinked, conned and lied to.

My sense is that a real, no-holds-barred, eyes-open examination of what’s going on these days would surprise a lot of people. When you start to look at people like Al Sharpton, who he is, who he was and what he’s done, and then consider that he’s a major powerful judge of President Trump, well, that in itself speaks volumes.

So…

You think they, the Despicable Dems, really care? Huh! What they do care about is power, getting it and keeping it. On that, they are all in, and they see their road to power as the road of demonizing anyone/everyone who does not agree with them. And so they keep an underclass which continually votes Democratic and which they can ever-use to accomplish their demonizing.

Pick up a copy of  all my works here:  By Peter Weiss


kitchen-4

To her credit, Brooklyn never told anyone a single thing about her and Bill. She was especially careful not to offer any clues or indication of what was going on to Lily. She sucked up Bill like the succulent lollipop she’d thought he was from the start and she ate him up voraciously.

For his part, the one thing he’d remember about her was how sweet she was. She reminded him of this girl – it just worked out that way – he’d known when he was about fifteen. Her name was Mary Lamb. That was her real name and he was sure that at the time that he knew her she’d already taken a lot of guff for it and that she’d probably take a lot more for the rest of her life.

Anyway, there was a song about kisses being sweeter than wine. Well, Mary Lamb’s tongue tasted like pure white cane sugar. Sweetest tongue, sweetest lips he’d ever known. Brooklyn was near as sweet to taste and she tasted good all over.

He knew he was a dog for doing it. He knew he was a dog altogether. But it was done now, and he’d gone back to doing Arlene and Mary too and he was starting to feel glad that he’d be leaving this restaurant soon.

At first he was feeling very anxious about making any changes. After having been so broke that they’d had to borrow money every month to pay rent, they were now free and clear, had cleared off all debt including the money he’d borrowed from his father for his last quarter’s tuition. They had a good car and were on their way to being pretty well set.

If he had his preference, and thus far in his life he hadn’t really had much of his preference, he would’ve stayed there, maybe he would’ve been single. But it was what it was and the way it was he was kind of happy to finally be ending it. He liked Arlene a lot as a friend, as a friend with benefits, and he loved Mary, truly deeply loved her. So it was too complicated and it was time to move on.

He used the time his wife was away wisely. He had a lot of fun with Brooklyn. He stayed several times at Arlene’s house. They talked and messed around and drugged and had just a generally good time. He took Mary to the Upper Room one last time. This turned out to be a memorable time because on some level they formalized their goodbye but on another level they formalized their love for each other. Bill would remember way back when he first started at Suburban that Mary had told him that you always loved you first crew. She said you always remember them and you always love them.

Well, as Bill was starting to get ready to be leaving this place, he knew there were certain people he really would love forever and he knew that he would never forget any of them. From the dishwasher who’d been kicked by the horse and was crazy in the head to Henry Lee’s wife who insisted that he do her as a payback to her husband to the salad girl Marie who simply wanted to be with a white guy and finally had her hair cut by Alfreda in Alfreda’s fit-passion – he would remember them all.

First and foremost was Robert, that dark, dark chocolate teddy bear of a man at the City Hall Annex who had looked so sad standing there in his workhouse blues that day holding the broom but not pushing it too much, who Bill offered a cigarette to because he didn’t have any money to give him for his workhouse commissary. Robert, the numbers runner for Mr. Bowman, Mr. Suburban, the broiler cook and head cook for the whole operation who six weeks later happened into Bailey’s office to do Bailey a favor and give somebody from the workhouse – he didn’t know who – a job.

Pick up a copy of  all my works here:  By Peter Weiss


kitchen-4

Floodgates. His fiancé spent almost 3 straight weeks up in Cleveland finalizing what was going to be the next step in her budding career. One thing about her Bill would remember long after they were divorced was that she was not one to be held back in what she wanted, not one to offer to be the first to give up something — no matter what it was — when compromise was in order. No, if she could take, could get, she would. But, in all fairness, Bill would always remember, she was sometimes willing to compromise and was a good sport about some things.

As to himself, he was ever too insecure to hold out for what he wanted and would give up the store to not be rejected. How he felt about that, now that was something else, and when he came to realize how he was on a conscious level, well, that was after the divorce.

So Brooklyn was flavor of the month. Anywhere and everywhere he could hit it, he did. And it didn’t go unnoticed.

He and Mary were breading fish and onion rings one afternoon when Mary passed a comment about how outrageous his behavior had become. Bill’s response was typical Bill. Right there in the kitchen he wiped his shmooshy hands and took hold of Mary. He kissed her long and hard, grabbed her hand and pulled her along with him out of the kitchen and on down the stairs.

“Goddamn, boy.”

“Goddamn nothing. Wanna see outrageous?”

He locked the staff ladies room behind them and told Mary he didn’t want to hear anything. Then he told her in no uncertain terms that as messed up as it was, he loved her plain and simple. And that was that. He put her up on the counter like they’d done many times before and did with her what they’d done many times before, only for both of them it was so much more intense. Mary cried afterward and Bill kissed up all her tears.

“Been inside Brooklyn, ain’t you?” Mary asked.

“Inside, outside and all around.”

“And?”

“And nothing. Couple more weeks this all be over and I’ll be out of here. Then I can go up there and get a whole new start.”

“Leopard don’t change his spots.”

“What’s good to you is good for you.”

“Well you sure saying that pretty weakly,” Mary said. “You be lucky you don’t get snagged and your marriage don’t end ’fore it really starts.”

“She’s a good girl,” Bill said.

“Sometimes I think you want to get caught.”

“Yeah, well, maybe I do.”

“Don’t be stupid, white boy.” Mary was straightening herself, fixing her undergarments and kitchen dress. “I love you,” she said, “much as I loved Yulie and my husband too when we first fell in love. But your life is with her. This here ain’t but a roadside stop for you. Your road is moving on in different directions. For me and Henry Lee and Freda, this is our road.”

She was set now and ready to go back upstairs. She took Bill’s face in both her hands and kissed him. “Ride your road boy and don’t you mess it up.”

They walked upstairs together, side-by-side but not hand-in-hand. For pretenses, Mary had him carry up some things from the storeroom, but no one upstairs was fooled, least of all Tommy who was waiting for them over by where they were breading.

“Ain’t you got no shame?” Tommy said critically and openly scornfully.

Bill looked down to his feet but not for long. He held his tongue and kept to himself.

Pick up a copy of  all my works here:  By Peter Weiss


This is presented here in three parts due to its length. But you can see the full article all at once  in its entirety with pictures and links to the videos here:

entire story as it appears on Medical Kidnap

first installment of full story:

foster-care-sexual-abuse

Foster Care: “Best Interest of the Child” or “Child Abuse”?

Theoretically, foster care provides a temporary loving, nurturing and safe home for children who are removed from their own families due to heinous neglect or abuse. This theory helps those involved in the system sleep good at night and feel like heroes.

Molly McGrath Tierney, the former Director of the Baltimore City Department of Social Services, gave one of the most insightful TEDx talks about the problems with the “Foster Care Industry” – an industry where children become a commodity that profits doctors, lawyers, judges, social workers, advocates, and other organizations, an industry that can only exist by taking other people’s children, an industry that damages the very children it purports to be helping. She goes on to explain the trauma inflicted on children by the foster care industry, saying:

we’re digging a wound so deep, I don’t believe we have a way of measuring it. This dismantling of families – it has enormous consequences. Kids that grow up outside of families – they don’t master the things that can only be learned in that context, like who to trust, how to love, and how to take care of yourself, and that frankly does more damage than the abuse and neglect that brought the kid to my attention in the first place.

Currently there are over 415,000 children in foster care in the U.S. today, according to the 2014 Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS).

What if you accepted that foster care was not a decision made “in the best interest of the child” but rather a financial decision made in the best interest of the state? What if you realized that the majority (75%) of children being removed from their home and placed into foster care was not due to imminent danger of abuse, but rather due to poverty, and are now being abused by the foster care system?

What if you acknowledged that many of the foster homes these children are being placed into are worse than the one from which they are removed? What if you learned about some of the stories of children who were abused in foster care, children who suffered emotional trauma from being “kidnapped” from their home, forced to take psychotropic drugs for the resulting emotional traumas they endured, physically, emotionally and sexually abused, or even used in sex-trafficking rings?

What would you do with this information?

Poverty Creates a Commodity of Children

Seventy-five percent of children being removed from their homes is due to “neglect.” But are children really being neglected, or is it the “opinions” of social workers that these children were being deprived intentionally of necessities of “adequate” food, clothing, shelter, medical care, or supervision, when in fact, the family was just poor?

The National Coalition for Child Protection Reform (NCCPR), writes in Who is in “The System” – and Why

Out of every 100 children investigated as possible victims of abuse, three are ‘substantiated’ victims of all forms of physical abuse, from the most minor to the most severe, about two more are victims of sexual abuse. Many of the rest are false allegations or cases in which a family’s poverty has been confused with neglect. Source.

Regarding poverty as a reason for child placements, Mary Callahan, former foster parent and author of Memoirs of a Baby Stealer: Lessons I’ve Learned as a Foster Mother, said in a recent article, Poverty’s Link to Foster Care Removals? It’s in The Eyes Of The Workers:

I didn’t get it. I started asking the workers why they were removed over things so minor.

One worker said, ‘There’s a difference between them and us,’ as if that explained anything. Another said, ‘Don’t worry about it. Those parents are the dregs of humanity.’ As I started meeting the parents, I actually liked most of them. I didn’t find them to be the dregs of humanity.

The biggest difference I found between them and me was that they were poor. So, it seemed to me, the children were taken because of poverty. Source.

Orphan Trains, the Forerunner to Foster Care

History repeats itself, especially if money can be made. Charles Loring Brace, founder of the New York Children’s Aid Society, conceived the “orphan trains” as a way to “salvage poor immigrant children,” moving them off the streets of the city and into “loving” homes in the country, sending them by trains to live with families who were complete strangers.

Modern-day foster care got its origins from the “orphan trains” of the mid-1800’s, the concept of moving “poor children” into “more worthy” homes. One of the main differences between the recipients of orphan train children and foster care today is that now these “loving foster families” get paid to take in these “poor children” by way of federal tax dollars.

Between 1854 and 1929, as many as 250,000 children from New York and other Eastern cities were sent by train to towns in Midwestern and western states, as well as Canada and Mexico. Families interested in the orphans showed up to look them over when they were placed on display in local train stations, and placements were frequently made with little or no investigation or oversight.

Reformers like Brace were determined to salvage the civic potential of poor immigrant children by placing them in culturally ‘worthy’ families while simultaneously reducing urban poverty and crime and supplying some of the workers that western development required. Source.

Although the children were supposed to be “treated as family members,” many of these children ended up as indentured servants. Some families could even pre-order children with certain traits. (Watch short video below.)   You Tube Video: The Oprhan Trains

(end of first installment–second installment to follow tomorrow)

Once again, the source for this story which is completely presented here but in installments is   Medical Kidnap.

Pick up a copy of  all my works here:  By Peter Weiss


kitchen-4

Brooklyn was waiting by his car in the parking lot. She was still in her work clothes but she’d changed into high heels and gotten rid of her apron. Bill could see she’d freshened up, did her make-up and her hair. He could smell her too. She’d obviously put on fresh perfume.

“Sure you’re not angry with me?” she asked.

“Positive.”

“Good.” She smiled at Bill. “Guess I owe you for the pie.”

“You don’t owe me anything.”

“You sure? I don’t mind paying for it.”

“Where you live?” Bill asked.

“Not too far,” Brooklyn said.

“How much you gonna pay?”

“However much it costs.”

“Last chance,” Bill said. “You sure you want to pay for that pie? I mean it didn’t cost nothing.”

“I think it’s only right.”

“I didn’t ask if you thought it was right. I asked if you were sure you wanted to pay.”

“I’m sure.” Brooklyn looked straight into Bill’s eyes as she said those last words. Bill kind of thought it was almost like a dare. Soon as she had said them, he leaned in and kissed her, a deep kiss. As he did so, he reached into her blouse and took a little feel of her.

“I’ll follow you,” he said.

And he did.

And there they were. She led him into her apartment, tossed her purse on the table, turned to him and kissed him.

They kissed all the way to her sofa, fell down on the sofa, Bill’s hands already reaching under her skirt for her down there.

“Wait. Wait, wait, wait,” Brooklyn said. Bill had just started to push her panties aside. They were still kissing. She spoke through the kisses.

“What?” Bill said.

“You know what.” Brooklyn fixed it so they were both sitting up.

“No,” Bill said. “Actually I don’t.”

“You  know. You’re a married man.”

“I am. Guilty.” He reached for her but she pulled back.

“What?” he asked her.

“You know me and Lily had a bet on you.”

“Say what?”

“We did. Fifty bucks on who could screw you first.”

“Why would you do something like that?” Bill asked.

“We heard a little bit about you. We both thought you were cute. So we made up a little competition.”

“So you’ll win the bet,” Bill said.

“No. We called it off when you got married. Now I’m thinking, you know, you really weren’t paying me any mind and so I flirted even though you’re married now. So I’m thinking I wouldn’t want some waitress messing with my new husband.”

Bill saw Brooklyn look  at her feet, thought she was being maybe shy-like, maybe shameful. He laughed, a long open and unabashed laugh.

“What?” she said.

“What?” Bill said. “You ask now? That’s what.”

“Better late than never.”

“Come here,” Bill said.

He was a dog, no two ways about it. He was a low-down dirty two-legged dog and that’s all there was to it.

Brooklyn inspired the very worst in him. All-but? Forget that. All-but changed swiftly to everything and more. All-but morphed into anything and everything and then some. Brooklyn was, to him, absolutely gorgeous, positively perfect. She had the loveliest digits — fingers and toes — he’d ever seen. She was sweet to kiss, soft to touch and there wasn’t a spot on her he didn’t get himself intimately acquainted with.

Brooklyn. His father was from Brooklyn. His mother was from Brooklyn. Brooklyn was Brooklyn.

Brooklyn was the closest thing he’d seen to Lucy, that gorgeous hostess over on the west side no one could have. They weren’t twins or sisters, that was for sure. But they had those same dark features, that same angularity, the same long, black hair and slightly freckled faces.

Brooklyn. A bit of angel.

Pick up a copy of  all my works here:  By Peter Weiss



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