Friday, August 1, 2014

August 1, 2014

August 1, 2014

My earliest memory is being in a crib, and facing my bedroom window.  In the darkness, the light outside the window was still on, but muted, or perhaps yellow, so it wasn’t bright.  Just enough to see outside the window if one needs to check something.  What I did see was a hand coming from the bottom of the window pane and grasping the side, as it slowly moves upward.  A face appeared as well, and it was bloody and distorted.  As a baby I screamed and either my father or mother heard me and they came in to comfort me.  There was a party at the time, taking place in the living room, and it seems the bloodstained face outside my bedroom window had a name.  Ramblin' Jack Elliot.

Jack was and remains a well-known folk singer, who somehow ended up at my parents’ party that night.  I think what happened was because he was drunk,  he fell down outside my bedroom window, and tried to either obtain his balance, or pick himself up by holding onto the window pane.  Nevertheless this is the first time image that I can remember.  To this day, I pretty much avoid sleeping facing a window.  Also it was the first time that I was introduced to fear.  Also being isolated from the noise I heard in the next room, made the experience even more terrifying to me.   But what child is not afraid of the dark and even more important what is outside their window.   I remember my mother telling me a story about her and my uncle, who is a couple of years older, and he was taking care of my mom at their family home, while the parents were out.  At the time, they were in the bedroom upstairs, and my uncle kept telling my mom that there is someone outside the window wanting to get in.  He was only trying to scare her, because that is what big brothers do to little sisters.  The window in question had a gigantic curtain, and my uncle kept teasing her that he will open the window to let in whoever is outside.  While my mom was petrified, and at the exact moment my uncle quickly clears the curtain.  As the curtain opened, it exposed a man attempting to break into their bedroom.  My uncle fainted, the man outside was surprised and he fell off the second floor window ledge, and my mom just stood there looking at my uncle on the floor and at the now-vacant window.

It wasn’t till many years later that I saw the film “Cape Fear” with Robert Mitchum playing Max Cady, that I re-lived the fear I had when I saw Ramblin’ Jack Elliot outside my window.   The presence of Cady just showing up as the family that he’s stalking, is having their low moments. It is just like if the spirit is down, then the evil spirit will come in.  I’m one of those people who can affect a room with my bad mood.  It seems to come out of my pours of my skin, and if I don’t hide it, then it becomes a concern from the people around me.  I just have to keep this in mind, especially if I’m in a work environment, where one has to keep people’s spirits up.  But the strain of having a phony smile on my face, or to laugh off idiotic gestures, is a deep concern of mine.   There is positive and negative energy, and one can totally dwell into either of those two definite landscapes.  I try to avoid the negative feelings, because it tends to overwhelm me, and therefore leads me to make bad decisions, when in actuality, I need to make something good out of the bad.

I often think the world of people like Yves Saint Laurent, because I knew he had a traumatic experience when he was in the military, and suffered under the cruelty of his fellow soldiers.  While he was in the military hospital, he heard the news that he was fired by Christian Dior due to the poor reception of a collection showing.    What happened was Saint Laurent was to be conscripted to serve in the French military during the Algerian war, but Marcel Boussac, the owner of the House of Dior put pressure on the government not to do so.  But once Saint Laurent had savaged reviews of his collection in the French press, Boussac asked that the designer to be conscripted.  So he did go, suffered from a breakdown, and ended up getting electroshock therapy and psychoactive drugs.   This caused a consistent problem for Saint Laurent throughout his life.  Nevertheless he did become successful, and in his own terms as well.   Sometimes the negative can inspire one to over come whatever ills them.  Often they just suffer in silence and do the best that they can be.  I have a tendency to go with fate, but with a whistle through my lips: Cliff Richard’s “Living Doll. ”

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