“My brother bought a Harley Saturday.”

“My brother bought a Harley Saturday.” @JosephJohnFull4 https://medium.com/@joefingas/my-brother-bought-a-harley-saturday-8279d548cc84

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A New Trick For This Old Dog

This morning was the worst. I was tired. My knees ached and my feet were still sore from being squeezed into my cheap ass dress shoes all day yesterday. I was beat and I didn’t want to get up.

But Joey had to get to school and I told him I’d pick him up at 7am. I put on my pants and stuck my arms into the sleeves of a hawaiian shirt. Then, I stumbled to the laundry room and pulled his school clothes from the dryer. I yawned and checked my phone as I left the house. 6:48am.

I pulled up to Joey’s house and called him. He answered and asked, “You out front?”

“Yep.”

He hung up his phone and, in less than a minute, he was walking out the door holding a book bag, trumpet case and drink container. He looked tired, too.

I slid from driver’s seat and opened the back door for him. Then, before I could stop my tongue, I said, “Goddamn it.” 

I had forgotten to unpack my music and sound equiptment and most of it was piled on the back seat. I continued to cuss outloud as I worked to clear the sitting area. The car was a mess.

Joey said, “It’s taking too long. I’ll do the rest.”

“Be patient,” I snapped.

“Why are you always so slow?”

“Slow,” I blurted. “I’ll show you slow. Go back into your house and we’ll start this bullshit game over.”

I don’t usually swear around Joey but, this morning, I was vulgar and profane. I had misplaced my filter and I wasn’t trying to find it. I was too tired to care.

Joey just shook his head and climbed into the back seat when it was ready. He stopped arguing with me and settled in with a video on his smart phone.

I pulled into McDonald’s and parked. I gave Joey a twenty dollar bill and said, “Get what you want.”

“Aren’t you coming in?”

“No, I’m not up to being called old and slow today. I’ll just sit here.”

Joey took the money, opened his door and left to place his order.

I closed my eyes and thought, “I love that boy. But, today, maybe I am too old.” 

I took a minute and emptied my mind. I whispered the third step prayer. I opened my eyes, left the Mescalade and walked into McDonald’s to find Joey.

He was sitting at a corner table furthest away from where most of the patrons were gathered. He was sipping his caramel frappe through a straw, scrolling the screen of his smart phone with one hand and unwrapping a bacon egg and cheese McGriddle with the other. A cup of coffee and a sausage biscuit were placed across from him. Joey looked up when I scooted my butt onto the fiberglass bench in front of the extra breakfast and said, “That’s for you.”

I said, “Thanks. Where’s my change?”

“Wha…?” 

Then, he laughed and handed me a ten spot and several coins.

I took a sip of hot coffee and relaxed. My head cleared a little, my bones ached less and, as I bit into my biscuit, I thought, “I’ve just be schooled.”

Posted in 12 Step Meetings, Blues, Co-Dependency, Denial, humor, Love, Memoir, Parenting, Poetry, Recovery, Relationships, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Not Yet

Sometimes I forget

I’m a lucky man. Forty 

Years ago, I was closing in on

The last days of my life. I can’t say I

Prayed for death coz I had long since 

Stopped all form of prayer but,

I tell you now, I kept knocking on

Its door, trying to pick the lock 

Till I was finally caught 

Climbing through the 

Kitchen window.

The Soul Police

Sent me back home

With a warning.

They said, “Out of town by sundown.”

I said, “It’s almost midnight. 

Your warning’s a bit late.”

Soul Patrol sighed, “Tomorrow’s sundown. 

Idiot. You’ve got till then. And 

Don’t come back before your

Time.”

And I haven’t been back. 

Not once.

Posted in 12 Step Meetings, Blues, Co-Dependency, Denial, humor, Love, Memoir, Money, Parenting, Poetry, Recovery, Relationships, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Hey, Joe, tell Rover to Move Over

I am enjoying the change in temperature today. 

Fifteen degrees cooler than Sunday. 

I was able to set up my gear without one drop of sweat forming on my brow.

My PA sounded crisp as I played a tribute to the sky. Never in my recollection had it ever been so blue. I wanted to kiss it.

Four hours later, at the end of my set, a man stood from his chair, walked over to the jar and tipped me twenty dollars.. 

He said, “You sound like Jimi Hendrix on the keys.”

I said, “I didn’t know he played the piano.”

My new patron laughed, pointed one index finger at me, cocked his thumb, made a gun shot noise and said, “He didn’t.”

Then, he patted his pocket like it was a holster and walked back to his chair.

The sun was going down as I was packing up my gear. I felt a little bit of a chill coming from the wind blowing over the bay side water. I cursed myself for not thinking to bring a wind breaker. 

I rolled my equipment cart over to where a cook was tending to some ribs cooking on an open pit Bar-B-Q.

I said, “Excuse me, sir, but could you let me stand next to your fire?”

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Mi Nombre Es..

Joey’s 13 and it takes him a while to wake up in the morning. He doesn’t want to talk when he climbs into the back seat of my car. 

Well, it’s really my brother’s car. It’s black 2006 Mercury SUV. I forgot what the car company called it coz I gave it a more personal, appropriate model name. I call it a “Mescalade.” 

” Coz it looks like a poor man’s ‘Escalade,’ I said to Joey. “That’s why.”

” Oh,” Joey said. “I thought it was because you were trying to be like Dos Osos.”

Dos Osos is Joey’s grandfather. I started calling him that when his voice mail message said his name was now “Joey Two Bears in honor of my great grand father who was a fearsome Apache chief.”

20 years ago, Dos Osos had returned his surname, Gonzales, to its original spelling, Gonzalez, to honor his Mexican-American father and, coincidentally, secure a couple of lucrative federal contracts offered specifically to minority business owners. He also hung a minature Republic of Mexico flag from his rear view mirror and a decal on his rear bumper sporting the colors of said flag and the letters H M I C. 

That bumper sticker is now on Dos Osos’s 2017 Escalade and, one night, Joey said, “Those letters stand for Hea…” 

I said, ” I know what they mean. I don’t want to hear it.”

Joey said it anyway and said, “And Dos Osos told me that BMW’s were made in Mexico and those letters stand for…”

“What is wrong with your grandfather?”

“I don’t know. He was sayin a bunch of racist stuff, about people from Mexico, and, when I told him he was racist, he said, ‘I am. I admit it. So what.'”

“Did you laugh?”

“No. When I was a kid, I thought he was funny. The mean things he’d say. Now, I know it’s dumb. He’s dumb. He doesn’t even know what Dos Osos means. And it’s his name.”

Posted in 12 Step Meetings, Blues, Co-Dependency, Love, Memoir, Parenting, Poetry, Recovery, Relationships | 2 Comments

But You Deserve Better 

I’ve been writing songs and posting stories on Facebook. One of my friends on that site wrote, “I’m enjoying your blog.”

I thought, “You like this, you ought to checkout my ‘real’ blog.” That’s when I realized I have not been posting on WordPress.

Sorry. I’m apologising to myself coz I’ve met, through correspondence, sharing blogs and feedback, so many wonderful writers in WordPress. I’m missing out and I’ve no one to blame but myself.

And, double sorry. I’m apologising to you, anyone who has liked a post or follows my blog. I haven’t been there for you. But I’m about to change that.

Thank you for your patience.

Posted in Blues, Co-Dependency, Love, Memoir, Poetry, Relationships, Uncategorized | 1 Comment

He lives across the street from his grandson. Yet, I’m the guy who picks the boy up and takes him to school. I take him to 

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