PIVOTAL  MOMENTS     …     …     …         2.



The motorcycle pulled away, I was hauled off by one of four waiting assailants who began a barrage of punches. My religious passivity was in vogue at the time, and I tried talking to the fellow hitting me, between his punches. After the fifth punch I concluded he was more interested in fighting, so I began fighting back, Queensborough-style. This did not go well, in spite of his retreating. I was too involved in defending myself to notice I was being outflanked by his brother who joined and struck me from behind. There were two others they had secured for support who waited their turn, should I be overcoming them and as need arose.  


His brother’s blows rendered off-balance. I fell backward hitting my head on the sidewalk, lights out. I was alone in the middle of the street, in darkness, as the lights of consciousness returned. I was being loaded onto the back seat of a car driven by passersby who took me to the Emergency at Mt. Sinai, and waited with me until my mother arrived with my younger sister. During that time, two policemen arrived, took my statement concerning the incident and departed. It was now out of my hands and I was told of sustaining massive concussions, which will require rest for healing.


I did not know how long the rest was to be, but on the way home I posited to my mother, “How is it, that men with whom I felt friendship, turned on me as they did and had required back-up that were strangers?” Her reply, “They don’t go to the same Sunday school as you.” I was two-months in recovery in her home, and this give me time to review the entire process, including my naive oversights. 


I was offered options of retribution by a few bikers, but calmer heads prevailed to let Karma, and the legal system run their courses. A court case ensued some time after, during which time these fellows continued their antics that resulted in the system levying judgments onto them according to these antics’ accumulations. 


My first month of recovery was limited to eating, sleeping while keeping bodily functions routine. The second month began with walking in the neighbourhood, later walking further afield out of the area. After six-weeks, I travelled downtown without experiencing exhaustion while I had my mind set on returning to work, a getting back on the horse scenario, so to speak. 


The owners accepted my proposal to resume my post, informing me they hired two more doormen at a forty-three percent wage increase. Still, with that update I failed to realize I had been underpaid for the job I was doing. These new doormen had experience on how to negotiate the salary increase, that my neediness failed to notice at the time. 


Simultaneously, a former public school acquaintance, then a Canadian Karate Champion and brother to an earlier friend in my teen years, became a patron of the establishment. Knowing of his expertise, I posited the question to him about how and where would I learn self-defense? Although I noticed the suggestion of a style and instructor different from his own, I chose not to question his motive. I found the school and instructor, and began studying that style of Tae Kwon-Do. 


As time went bye, my resultant learning began to garner unexpected results. Nine months into my training, having motivation from my earlier assaults/mugging, I began to augment my journey in Life with the martial arts that began in October, 1970.





Summer '71

PIVOTAL   MOMENTS                             1.



It was several months after the one-sided punch-up, my two cohorts sinking into the crowd to evade involvement in our laughing-out-loud unexpected outcome. I was out of work and out of school, coming to terms with having failed attempting higher education. I had part-time jobs, needing extra finances to support myself while living in the home of my recently widowed mother. 


Noting the watering hole I frequented, I inquired about an evening shift which was an easy fit. My request was well timed as I was told they were seeking a new doorman and would give me a try, having been a regular without incident. The money wasn’t great but adequate to my needs, so I accepted the position and soon started. I had my hands full, not fully cognizant of previous goings on, but was briefed that there were three sectors of imbibers that required managing. One section was relegated to a major biker club, another sector to the general public, and the third sector relegated to a collected assortment of drop-in biker clubs.


In no time at all, all three sections were humming nicely, homogeneous as the saying goes. This establishment being the last place these bikers were legally allowed to frequent, being barred from all other watering holes in the city due to assorted of infractions of their making. This allowed a little leverage. All were in agreement to take any and all physical conflicts ’n confrontations outside, thereby keeping our establishment free from any undue hardship, myself included.


Months of non-violence and without a night off, the owners were ready to allow me a night off giving a sizeable busboy a chance to take over having surmised I appear to manage things easily. On this appointed night off, previous doormen who were fired chose to visit in order to give me their feedback on my managing skills. Me being absent, they elected to make their statement on the new stand-in, busboy now doorman. He did not fare well. They cornered him in the men’s room and gave him a beating. I returned to the surprising news, and the dismay of the bar staff. Their anger that the busboy, a member of their ethnic group, took the beating that was meant for me. I was not one of theirs.


Time passed without incident, save the usual disruptions which were either taken outside or quickly handled by supportive customers. In spite of being a less violent place than when managed by the previous doormen, now barred, the owners soon felt I would require a back-up to support. The number of customers grew with the drop in violence during my tenure, an observation I overlooked. I was told the owners hired a former police officer, but I may have misheard or not completely understood, but we teamed up easily going forward.


One night, closing processes went smoothly, the building emptying more easily than usual. As I climbed the stairs to exit my mind blanked out, and my breathing became hurried and I missed a step climbing the stairs. I paused to catch my breath before continuing on. Upon exiting the club I noticed a crowd gathering, including the bar staff and the two recently barred doormen. 


As I was getting a ride home from the recently employed doorman, I climbed onto the back of his motorcycle, positioning myself for the journey. Easier said than done.





2b. Setling In c.'65




Experimental Social Psychologist and Epidemiologist Becca Levy studying Ageism reports negativity towards will eventually influence balance, handwriting, memory and hearing, and puts healthy young adults at-risk of heart disease up to 40yrs later in Life should this be their conduct.


People genetically disposed to Dementia who practice positive attitudes toward ageing are reported to be 50% less likely to fall victim to dementia. Attitudes, conscious or not, drive behaviours which factors in longterm heart-health people who believe ‘poor health’ is inevitable later in Life.


Levy found there is a disconnect between young people and their future selves, but she also found similar debilitating effects among seniors who indulge in this ageism. The young exhibit their contempt via Social Media, on Facebook’s site; and, there the more aged do so by being prejudice against their own group. This makes ageism more pervasive than sexism and racism because it has no such limitations.


CARP’s survey on the subject found disturbing results. 70% respondents found it harder to acquire employment, 20% experienced ageism from employers more recently and 16% had employers explicitly telling them to retire and took actions to make them feel no longer welcome in the workplace.


Solutions are available, should interests and mindsets be open to exploring them. I wonder how rampant is the fear-of-ageing in those who have read the results of this study, and its derivatives?




1. Uncle Lyn




When considering/contemplating clutter, it is not with kindness and compassion but with disdain, for the most part. Speaking of onlookers and sometimes victims of the issue. Clutter is seen as the result of hoarding in the extreme, if not soon to be. I speak of the unconscious collecting of things over a period of time spanning decades, and I am speaking from experience as I sit and ponder the task ahead to de-clutter.


I am told, a little at a time dissolves the mass pile up. Not so, if you’re in the clutches and living alone. The mass has become a non-verbal companion, one of involuntary comfort. I cannot satisfactorily elaborate, nor explain, the sensation accompanying the mass that grew slowly under varying conditions without being noticed. All I can say, my mass grew as a result of caring individuals who wished to show their affection for me over extended periods and I failed to definitively say, ‘No, I don’t need more things among the many already given and accepted.’


Now, ridding myself of these accumulated emotional baggage manifested as gifts has become a monumental task. One I loathe doing in seclusion, as I find myself wanting to spend my time with different pursuits as much as possible. 


I look at the numerous boxes and know just one at-a-time will net me breathing room on many levels. But, I procrastinate as solemn feelings flow without inviting me near the mound in front of me. I turn on the computer and allow words to flow while avoiding knowledge of a storage locker with contents that beckons me, still.


The clutter is a combination of gifts and household contents that ought to be in places where they may be useful, instead of steadfastly occupying boxes. I recall TV shows that put my collection to shame, but that is of little consequence since I was such an organized and tidy person. 


Suffice to say, I did have a catalyst that prompted my clutter dilemma. I was on the border of clutter, when my dwelling dell on complicated times forcing me to adapt by reducing my living space. Sadly, the complication saw not resolution for about 12yrs, by which time I had accustomed myself to a pathway of mobility that resulted with me ‘camping out in my own living space’, as a former neighbour remarked. Among room for the increasing strain I fell into accommodating my self to rudimentary behaviour patterns.


During these difficult years, even though many were aware of my conditions, being unable to offer adequate support, gifts were given in show of solidarity. I accepted the gifts being distracted by my dilemma and had not contemplated the import of the gift-givings. Those same givers now offer advice ’n suggestions to de-cluttering without realizing how my mass evolved, and the psychological aspects of much of my contents, professional portions notwithstanding.


The attachments run deep, not so deep that parting becomes impossible but impractical to simply ‘chuck what has not been used over time’. Being a thinking person, I am conscious of the value of things in spite of not them not being used over time. Therein lives much of my dilemma in parting with my collection. The things are slated to go, but the HOW of their departure hinges on a emotional state in being alone in the process.


Similar to being overweight, it’s more than what is visible that is involved. I am tasked with coming to terms with them all and the resolve to begin. I am on it, and will address it, soon. 





3a. Bathroom:Livingroom Contents




I have often wondered about clutter, this much maligned product-of-unexplained attitude/behaviour/conduct. There are many reproaches and reproofs offered, not to mention advice to eliminate Its expression. Suffice to say, it’s symptomatic of an emotional state going unacknowledged/unrecognized and inappropriately unattended. 


It is my belief, biased in self-analysis, that this is a state of arrested-development accumulating addictive emotional baggage which, if left alone, will petrify. At the same time, forcing – shaming and the like resolves nought as a workable solution. 


The answer is as clear as mud in your eyes, and similarly as irritating for seekers of easy answers.






AWAKENING  MIND     …   c.’67


During our residence in this neighbourhood, semblance of stability began to settle albeit with an undertow of restlessness on automatic since childhood. “What you don’t know won’t hurt you”, is the saying, but that’s for those with privileges and luxuries where others picked up the tab, paid the price.


Time passed and friendships evolved, I discovered our neighbourhood was comprised of Jews from various nations, Italians and Hungarians with a ‘doors open’ policy. Sadly, our homogeneous experiences lasted two years before I was to face another relocation. As usual, going with the flow learning from incoming sagas.


I was to be influenced by so many unconscious conditionings I had no idea how pervasive and affective through adolescence and into adulthood. Decisions made on choices not fully realized nor understood but accepted nonetheless, come what may.


Religious beliefs played a big part in the process, all subliminally inserted into my mind as fact. I was christened Presbyterian; went to a Baptist elementary school; attended a Methodist church on Sunday; spent a year under Catholicism; family ascribed to Church of God Saints of Christ, Pentecostal Revivalism and Seventh Day Adventist dogma. All of these influences, including a maternal grandfather as a roving preacher, before my 13th birthday.


I arrived on the continent psychologically indoctrinated and on my way to fulfilling my conditioning to become a minister, a missionary a some faith. This was to change arriving on the street where cross-referencing of multiple-cultures accepting each other abounded. While I blended and made friends, there was the sharing of many  ideas within our brood. More incoming ideas than outgoing. It was clear I had been exposed to ideas that I accepted without question, possibly because I didn’t know how to formulate relevant questions. Information was absorbed before questions could be formulated. “Nothing from nothing is nothing”, as the saying goes.


The 2yrs spent in that neighbourhood was the seeding. The gestation was upon me during our move northward for the period of one year.


It was unusual for this to occur, our mother being a reckoning force with when it came to attending church on Sundays which sometimes meant all day! Somehow, the morning light shone differently one particular Sunday. My attendance call to church was requested from my bedroom door. I turned and said, “No, I’m not going.” Expecting a tirade followed by an argument, which I was prepared to endure, but a voice said, “Okay”, then silence. Soon after, I heard the door close signifying attendance in church without me.


I was dumbfounded, wondering not only what just occurred but also what would forthcoming, and its import? What was coming was not only unimaginable, but also influenced by prior conditionings yet to be recognize. I was unable to realize how what was to come was to affect my disposition going forward.  





Waterfront NW - SE Panorama 23.7.13




How much preparation has one done, and how much Time is there leading up to and including one’s Transmigration preparation phasing?


These questions have floated throughout my consciousness during the year, along with others preceding. I reflect on the preparations I am told are essential: Last Will ’n Testament, requiring an Executor; a Living Will requiring a Power of Attorney; and, last but not least as far as I know, a Resuscitation Waiver! 


I considered their suggestions; but then, there are other thoughts. Whence did we come before this consciousness insertion, invasion? Did we behave similarly in other planes of existence? Are we on some awakening process, accorded to each the amalgamation of parts essential to unique specifications for Actuation of the Whole?


I ask this question Loudly muted in text to Alert all on this consciousness level frequency. 


CAN   YOU   HEAR   me?





Rain Aftermath*




I was traversing through Life when I was simultaneously party to puberty and emigrating to another country. I was to discover my education was wanting for things were not as I had interpreted them. I was into our fourth relocation upon arriving within the space of two years. The first relocation was from an internal family policy. The second being the ceiling of the basement apartment was too low for my sprouting height. The third was of unknown origins, but the fourth was an ideal setting where we resided for two whole years.


It was in this location that friendships began and flourished with neighbours of many Eastern and Southern European origins. We, the only colourful ‘n single-parent family living on the street, to engage fluidly with the other adolescents. I found myself greeting passers by from the veranda, easily meeting with most of our neighbours. Meeting one person extended into many, with their welcoming parental units who were usually absent during our peer interactions.


There were two occasions that caught me off-guard, one being more exploratory that the first. The first occurred in grade eight when a fellow student told me of his Italian origins. To this I inquired, what was an Italian and where was that country located. We referenced a map, and to my surprise I was thinking in historical terms and he was speaking of geography. The land mass he referred to as Italy, I referred to as Rome and I had to update my frame of mind including this data going forward.


The second came as an even greater surprise, as it related to religion as well as geography!


I overheard a peer being referred to as ‘slimy’, by other fellows around him. I paid little attention to the tone of the exchange being preoccupied by the confusion of the reference. I introduced myself and inquired his actual name since I doubt his name was truly ‘Slimy’. He told me his name was Solomon and ‘Schloimy’ was a filial reference, the short for Solomon. To this I inquired further as to his country of origin. He claimed Eastern European origins, and a Jew. 


I was perplexed. In disbelief I asked, “What do you mean you’re a Jew?”. I stated, “Weren’t all Jews now Christian since the resurrection?” He was calm and patient with me, noting the sincerity in my reaction. He elaborated that was not so, as the Jewish belief had a different spin on the Jesus thing, my bias. Fortunately, seated upon hearing this revelation, otherwise I could have fallen from this surprising revelation. Caught off-guard twice, amazed in such a short space of time.


The Italian update had a day-to-day exposure process during school activities. Not so with the Jewish-thing. Schloimy and I became friends, and he revealed more of his religious belief, which included the Friday evening practice, and the Saturday Baths exposure I was to experience a few times. 


These Baths took place in ‘Settlement House’ across the street from what is now OCAD (Ontario College of Arts & Design). It was a time relegated solely to males in very warm temperature setting, a pool and steam rooms. I found myself among men of varying ages, mostly senior while Schloimy and I played, swimming and enjoying in our growing friendship and processing mind-altering information.





2b. Setling In c.'65

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