Green Olives

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“Oh, this is great, just great!” James stared at the dead man in his trunk and wondered how the hell he was going to explain this. “A lovely way to start the day. A dead man in my trunk and a woman I don’t remember in my bed. Anything else you wanna throw my way?” he yelled as he looked up at the sky. Then he heard the police sirens coming his way.

 

Running from the sound James came to the bridge that crosses the bay. Determined to avoid being caught up in some weird murder-mystery event, James decided to cross over the bay. With the sound of the sirens receding behind him, James slowed to a walk.

At least it’s a nice day for a walk. He thought to himself. I don’t even remember going out last night, I was just watching the game and.

 

James noticed a familiar woman standing against the railing on the bridge, the wrong side of the railing.

 

“Excuse me, is everything alright?” James asked.

 

The woman turned her head, she had eyes of a dark brown, darker than James remembered, and they were filled with such pain. Recognition came to the woman quickly.

 

“Don’t try to stop me James, you know how I try to stay out of your affairs. Now you stay out of mine,” the woman stated with a tone that James remembered all too well.

 

“Mom?”

 

“Back away James, this doesn’t concern you. Your father is waiting for me, now let me finish this.”

 

“Dad? Where is he? What the heck are you doing on that side of the guardrail? What the heck is happening to me today?”

 

“See, it’s always about you, isn’t it James? You told your father and myself not to meddle, so we didn’t. Look, see what it got us. Now, you will be on your own. I hope you’re happy.”

 

With that James’ mother jumped from the bridge. He rushed to her, too late, and watched as she turned her head and slammed into the water below. The splash was large enough that James could see a rainbow

in the residual mist.

“What the…”

 

The sirens seemed to come from nowhere, and James didn’t have any time to dwell on the death of his mother, and apparently his father, over the side of the bridge.

 

James turned and ran away from the scene and headed to the forest preserve, across the bay from the city. Figuring that he would be able to hide out in the woods for a while to think things out.

 

“This has to be the worst day of my life.”

 

“Why is that mister?” asked a young boy.

 

Where did he come from?

James was startled by the sudden appearance of the kid. “What are you doing out here in the woods?”

 

“Same thing as you mister, — hiding?”

The kid reminded James of someone, but he couldn’t put his finger on it.

“Oh yeah, what are you hiding from, kid?”

 

“Well, you know, it’s hard to explain, but, like my parents are real mad at me and don’t like, understand what it’s like to be a kid.”

 

“Oh, I’m sure it can’t be that bad,” James consoled, ignoring the improper use of the word like.

 

“Oh you don’t know my parents mister. I broke the front window, and like it’s going to cost a million bucks to replace, so they’re going to be pretty upset with me.”

 

“A million dollars, eh? That must be some window.”

 

“It is, my mom always told me that the best thing in her life was that window. It had a picture of some lady on it, and now it’s broke.”

 

That was weird. James did the exact same thing when he was a kid. In fact, he ran away to the woods then as well.

 

“You know what kid, I did something like that when I was young. My parents were pretty steamed about it, sure. But they still loved me.”

 

Did they?

 

Of course they did don’t be stupid.

 

And they showed their love for you by leaping off a bridge to their deaths.

 

That is NOT the point!

Really, what IS the point then?

 

Fighting back his own thoughts, James was going to tell the kid it would all work itself out and not to worry, but the kid was gone.

 

“What the…”

 

The sound of police sirens stopped James’ thought and reminded him that he was on the run himself, and to not worry about some kid with issues.

 

“Now where was I headed?”

 

“To your old tree house. That’s where you always run away to.”

 

The voice brought back memories of a time gone by, but how did she get here?

 

“Darla?”

 

“Yes.”

 

“What are you doing here?”

 

“Helping you of course.”

 

“Uh, aren’t you married and living in New York?”

 

“Of course not silly, you are the only one for me. Just like I am the only one for you.”

 

“But…”

 

“You told me that before our first time, don’t you recall? I needed that reassurance and you said it so sweetly and with what I thought was such sincerity.”

 

“Yeah, but…”

 

“Oh that’s right. I was just another notch on your bedpost. Isn’t that what you told Gary and the rest of your friends?”

 

“But, that was like fifteen years ago, and like, I was in love, really.”

 

“Tsk. Tsk. Still don’t know how to properly use the word like I see. I thought you would have fixed that by now.”

 

“What the…”

 

The sirens sounded like they were right on top of James, so he ran again.

 

“That’s right, keep running!”

 

Running blindly through the trees, James looked back to see if there was any pursuit and how close it might be. Turning back around, James had just enough time to discern that he was going to feel a lot of pain, when he hit the tree.

 

James woke up in a motel room. Lying on his back he noted the water stains from the room above. They looked like a picture fit for the Renaissance. Okay, maybe not that good.

 

“Amazing artwork, those water leaks.”

 

“Ah, you’re finally awake. I thought you might be dead.”

“What? Who are you?” James stammered.

 

“Oh, no one special, remember?”

 

James suddenly realized that his arms and legs were tied to the bedpost, leaving him spread-eagle across the bed, naked.

This is definitely not what I need right now.

 

“Why am I tied to the bed like this? What is going on? Where are my clothes?” James asked, looking at the eyes of this stranger. Despite the heat of the room, James felt a chill running down his spine.

 

“Now, now, Jimmy. Don’t you remember asking me to do this for you?” looking at James the woman saw a discernable shake of James’ head. “No, of course not. Had one too many I guess. Lucky for me, I get paid whether you can get it up or not, right?”

 

“You’re a hooker?”

 

“I like to call myself an escort, thank you very much. Sounds a little more professional, don’t you think?”

 

James started to sputter, “What? How? Where? –“

 

“When and why?” she finished. “My goodness you need to get yourself some of that ginkgo memory-booster stuff. Okay, let me try to refresh your memory. You said that you were having issues at home and needed my services, to take away your pain and anger. We ended up here, you asked me to tie you up, and then you passed out. Like I said, I get paid no matter what, so in this case it was a win-win I guess. I get paid and you didn’t cheat on your wife. I was just making sure that you would wake up, and maybe, you know.”

 

“Yeah, but–” James tried to think clearly, ignoring the obvious proposition, “I was just in the woods, running from the cops…”

 

“Cops! You brought the cops here?”

 

“I don’t know. I just said I was…”

 

The sirens sounded like they were coming from just outside the door.

 

“That’s just great! Now they’re here.”

 

“But, I didn’t, uh, –” James started, as he felt a sharp pain in his side.

 

“You okay?”

 

“Now that is about, the, uh, –.”

 

James felt the sharp pain against his ribs, this time, and noticed that his arm was going numb.

 

Oh great now I’m having a stroke.

 

James noticed that his vision was starting to cloud up, and he felt like he was floating.

 

What a way to go, my wife is going to kill me.

 

Another sharp pain on his side brought stars to his eyes.

“James!” his wife was yelling at him. “James, I swear if you hit that snooze button one more time, I’m going to start kicking you!”

 

“What?”

 

“I said wake up! You are going to be late for work, if you don’t get up soon. You kept hitting the snooze button, so you brought it on yourself.”

 

“What?”

 

“Wake up dummy! You have to get ready for work.”

 

“Oh, right.” As the realization of what just happened hit him. James turned off his alarm clock, thinking that he needed to get a different alarm.

 

“Hey honey.”

 

“Yes, dear.”

 

“I love you.”

 

“I love you too. Now get up and get ready, you still have time to catch your train.”

 

“Okay. Honey.”

 

“Yes.”

 

“Don’t let me eat green olives right before bedtime anymore.”

 

Chocolate Smurfs

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I hate to travel.

 

Scratch that, I love travelling. I hate to travel alone, without my family. It depresses me and really makes me crazy around bedtime. You see, I cannot fall asleep when I am travelling alone and it really makes it hard for me to focus when I am on a business trip. It’s hard to be on your “A Game” when you only get two to three hours of very uncomfortable sleep a night. Imagine how you would be by Friday after getting the same amount of sleep in one week that you might normally get in one night.

 

Not pretty. Trust me.

 

I have tried a wide variety of ideas that have been handed down to me once someone hears about my issues. I love that everyone wants to help, it’s what makes this country great – too bad none of them seem to work very well.

 

One suggestion was to dance myself to sleep. I really didn’t understand this, but I figured it was worth a shot. So I turned on MTV and prepared myself for a dance-a-thon that would begin once the commercials ended.

 

Snort.

 

I completely forgot that they no longer play music on MTV, and the cheap radio in the hotel room, just doesn’t find a station clear enough to understand the lyrics, or more importantly, hear the beat. So I gave up and sat down and ate some french fries, and while they made me feel better initially, I had to spend a lot of extra time in the other room in my hotel room, if you know what I’m saying. Apparently filling up on greasy spuds, does not do my body good.

 

By the time I found myself in bed watching a rerun of Johnny Carson’s “Tonight Show” and dozing off to Ed McMahon saying “Yes!” it was well past midnight.

 

Somehow, I did finally fall asleep and entered the most disturbing part of the evening, my subconscious.

 

I found myself sitting on a chair in my bathroom spraying my hair down with some high-grade hairspray, which in itself is hilarious because I have been bald for the past twenty years, but I figured why not. If my subconscious sees me with David Coverdale hair, so be it. I didn’t really like seeing the grey hairs seeminvg to stand out and make let it be known that I am an old dude. Great, first I can’t sleep and now my subconscious is reminding me that I am old.

 

Beautiful.

 

It gets better. As I leave my bathroom, which appears to be about twice the size of my house, again I am not minding this part since having a bathroom the size of a small ballroom could have its benefits. The tub alone was like an Olympic-sized swimming pool, so I can get my bubbles and some exercise all in one swoop.

 

I have to find this house!

 

Since I like the other white meat so much, I decided to have myself some pork chops – hey I can control my subconscious every now and again, can’t I? I felt like covering them with chocolate, but my mind took over and literally yelled in my dream ear, “CHOCOLATE!”

 

So I decided against adding the sweet stuff and went for some mustard instead. I don’t know why I did that but did feel like asking my mind if it had any Grey Poupon. I figured that my mind wouldn’t like it too much and might turn me into a Smurf or something. Imagine that, being turned into a Smurf.

 

No thank you.

When the alarm went off I was not as rested as one might think and decided to bring my iPod along for the next trip to give dancing another chance.

Something Completely Different

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Trying something new tonight – I am writing from the home office space of one Roger William Miller II, esquire.

 

Whatever.

 

I am downstairs in the bowels of the Miller house, below even where the servants live and cook and eat and such, we are talking deep man, like way underground in a cavernous canyon of a cave that we stumbled upon quite by accident, but knew, just knew that this was the place for fun and sun, okay maybe not sun but let me get to where I am going with this okay? So we find this massive cavern and decide to make it into a Miller complex because, well, I am a Miller and thought it would give the place a nice cheery ring to it. Anyway the cavern was found to have an abundant supply of natural resources that will help a person live for an eternity down here, I mean we got your cable television, your popcorn machine your fresh running water and natural gas is just bursting the seams to get to your locale and help you become more productive in life. Okay, some of that was hyperbole, as you can probably imagine – but the popcorn machine is real and really cool and awesome at making popcorn.

 

I digress.

 

So we stumble upon this cavern, which coincidentally is right underneath my current humble abode, so the scenario is playing out perfectly. No I am not Batman, but that would be cool. Anyway, like I said the natural resources available are amazing. There is a deep well that gives us the most pure water and best tasting too I might add water that (note, I know there are errors both of the grammatical and spellingal type (I KNOW!!) just roll with it okay?)  the world, at least the world known to me, has ever tasted. Evian, Spavian, or whatever. This was some seriously awesome pure water, whose source ran deeper than i could determine without going on a deep diving mission, of which I really wasn’t inclined to take. Let’s just say that there is enough water here to hydrate a family of nine for at least three hundred years, and I might be playing that a bit conservatively. The first thought was that I had found a veritable gold mine and that I would be wealthy beyond my wildest dreams. Then I got greedy and wanted to hoard it all myself – boy was that the best decision I ever made.

 

Natural gas seems to flow out of every pour down here, which I know isn’t the exact technical term and all, but boy howdy did I see something workable with that. So I did a little studying and watched some Science channel shows on how to contain and use this great natural resource. With a little time and a little trial and error, I believe that we completed something amazing. We ran the gas throughout the cavern, well first we found the most logical place to tap into it, then piped up the whole cavern – with the intention of possibly moving into the cavern in the near-ish future, thus we made sure that we had pipeline running everywhere we figured to be building rooms and fireplaces and the like, it was quite the maze of piping and well, I needed some outside help with it, which really pained me, but I am glad that I had them do the bulk of the work. In fact, I convince a couple of people that when the time comes, they could bring their families with them and maybe shack up with us for a while. I doubt if anyone will, but you never know.

 

Where was I? Oh yeah, so I ahd a couple of friends help out with the piping and then we got started on the building of our castle walls. This I didn’t need much help with, especially after I told the kids that they could design and build their own rooms any way they saw fit, but I did limit them to three gas taps and two water taps. Other than that, if they wanted a thousand square foot room, they built themselves a thousand square foot room. Who knew they could be so creative, but I will delve into that a little later. Let’s just say that we had some of the most awesome houses ever built under the ground.

 

As for that sun issue, well that one was solved with the simple solution of using skylights that started from the house above ground and then were spread out through the whole compaound – I don’t really like calling it that, but it is what it is I guess, aye?

 

Pardon my Irish for creeping in there, it happens on occasion and I have to do my best to maintain me sense.

 

So we have heat, light, water and food. Uh oh, I didn’t mention the food, well we later found while investigating the cavern, that there was another source of fresh water, although not nearly as pure as our original source. anyway, thes river had some lush soil that just was asking to be tilled, and so we placed a couple of our skylights in some proper positions, tilled the land, planted the seed and there you have it, a garden that not only grows some awesome vegetables, but because of the climate could produce more yield than any similar sized plot of land above ground could, it was like our prayers were answered, and then the river also surprised us with fish, lots and lots of fish. Now I would love to have a steak someday and we are debating whether or not to buy us a couple of cattle to supply said meat and possibly some milk. The problem with that was threefold; one, how do we get the cattle into the cavern without people noticing?; two, how do we jkkkjdkk ksdkj kjsd jjs  arghh brain cramp.

I will revisit you laters.

Second Thursday of Lent

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Excerpt from the Diary of St. Faustina:

I was reflecting on how much God had suffered and on how great was the love He had shown for us, and on the fact that we still do not believe that God loves us so much. O Jesus, who can understand this? What suffering it is for our Savior! How can He convince us of His love if even His death cannot convince us? (Diary – 319).

 

Meditation:

My Savior, it is so easy for me to fall into the trap of the Evil One and to believe that You don’t love me. When the trials come, the thought that You don’t care about me always comes into my head. How quickly I forget all that You endured for me. I am sorry, Jesus! I want to keep the image of Your Cross near me always so that I will never forget Your love for me. Give me the grace to believe in Your great love for me, even in the midst of my trials.

– Fr. Joseph Roesch, MIC

 

God Bless

First Wednesday of Lent

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Excerpt from the Diary of St. Faustina:

When we pray, we ought not force the Lord God to give us what we want, but we should rather submit to His holy will (Diary – 1525).

[In case you missed it in the last note :), all of Jesus’ words will be bolded in these quotes]

 

Meditation:

Dear Jesus, I know that St. Faustina once wrote the words “My will” on a page in her Diary and then she crossed them out because she only wanted to do Your will. I am afraid to let go of my will, Lord. I am afraid that I will not be happy if I am not able to do my own will. I am sorry that I try to force You to do my will, Lord. Teach me how to surrender. Take away my fear and help me to be more like St. Faustina.

– Fr. Joseph Roesch, MIC

 

God Bless

First Tuesday of Lent

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Excerpt from the Diary of St. Faustina:

My daughter, suffering will be a sign to you that I am with you (Diary – 669).

Meditation:

Dear Jesus, I have always been afraid of suffering. I don’t like pain of any kind, and I fear being abandoned and alone. Teach me to trust that You won’t abandon me in the midst of my suffering, but that my suffering is a sign that You are with me in a special way. My Lord, help me to trust in this truth and to not run away from trials. Help me to realize that You are always very close to me, and never more so than when I am in the midst of some type of suffering.

– Fr. Joseph Roesch, MIC

Things To Note: Fine Print 🙂

Jesus’ words to St. Faustina in bold text.
God Bless

First Monday of Lent

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Excerpt from the Diary of St. Faustina:

Although My greatness is beyond understanding, I commune only with those who are little. I demand of you a childlike spirit (Diary – 332).

Diary of Maria Faustina Kowalska: Divine Mercy In My Soul 1987 Marian Fathers of the Immaculate Conception of the B.V.M. All rights reserved. Used with permission.

Meditation:

My Savior, I remember how I depended on my parents for everything when I was young. I took all that they did for me for granted. I now realize how deep their love has always been for me. Teach me how to depend on You with a childlike trust. I know it will take all eternity for me to begin to comprehend your greatness. But I can begin today. Little by little, I can grow in my appreciation of You and in my love for You!

– Fr. Joseph Roesch, MIC

God Bless