Well, considering where most of my friends are now, I guess I'm glad to have a job. Every couple of weeks, I have lunch with a couple of my friends who have retired from the US Postal Service where I worked for the better part of 6 years. We meet at a local beer pub located downtown Raleigh and discuss all the things that there guys usually discuss, women, beer, women and cars while sipping the golden elixir. Did I say women? I look back at their lives and careers and how they had a relatively easy time building a career road to retirement. I'm still stuck in the game just starting a permanent job so I got a ways to go.
Spending a lot of time as a contractor, I got a lot of job experience but I paid the price of not having the satisfaction of a stable job. I worked for some very large companies. Xerox, Dow Chemical, Eli Lilly, Coca Cola, IBM, HP, US Postal Service, quite a very impressive list. Well, it scares the shit out of people when they read my resume. All these companies, why didn't he stay?
I won't say that things are that gloomy, they actually aren't. I just sometime wish I had had a few of the breaks that my friends got early on in their lives. I guess I can atone it to the choices people make. Had my dad chose to stay in Virginia when he retired from the Air Force or move back to New Jersey with the rest of my mothers family, would things have been any different? I guess we'll never know, since they definitely ain't making any time machines yet. Well lets see how this all came to be.
It seems like moving to Indiana was just one of the most crappiest decisions my dad ever made. I was relatively miserable there. I was so far past most of the kids in knowledge that I tried to dumb myself down to fit in. It didn't work, they could see I was much smarter than they were and I paid a price. Middle school, High school, I was ostracized for being the kid that screwed up the bell curve. Girls wouldn't talk to me and the guys wouldn't play ball or just hang out.
I started smoking Newports to be a bad boy. I never went much farther than that. My moral compass wouldn't let me. A couple girls started to notice me. They would sit on my lap during the bus ride. Maybe to tease or get a rise out of me, or both. The bumpy bus ride provided for some interesting lap dances. One girl actually flipped her dress up over my lap and I could swear she wasn't wearing any panties. I didn't care, I was just happy to get a little attention from someone. It was good while it lasted. The family moved to the other side of town and once again and I had to started rebuilding friendships.
I was smoking Marlboro's now, different set of kids. The west side kids were a bit more should I say "rough". I made friends with a red haired girl who drove her car to school. She would pick me up most days and we seemed to hit it off. We even necked in the parking lot before classes started. By this time, I was nominated to the National Honor Society and got voted in as "Masters of Arms" for student council my sophomore year. This made me a hit with most of the white kids but to the black kids, well, I just didn't fair well. I didn't care.
If things didn't fair any better for me, I was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant in my JROTC class, so now the few kids I was pals with were now my subordinates. They kept placing me further away from build friendships, my parents, the schools, even the very kids I wanted to be friends with. I didn't care.
My junior year at school found me at a new high school and now having to start build new friends from kids who had already established friendships. I was smoking Benson Hedges. I was the outsider trying to nudge my way in. Not a good position to put myself in. I made a few friends. Mostly the folks that were like me. My moral compass was starting to twitch a bit when smoking lead to a few joints and an occasional nip of Wild Irish Rose. But, it made me fit in somewhere. I didn't care.
Senior year came and I found myself in a couple of fights and scraps. Not the one to be picked on, I defended myself and I could get down right brutal. I picked one kid up and body slammed him on the teachers desk one day when I had had enough of him. I never saw a teacher move that fast out of the room. Several of the male teachers and a janitor came in and pulled me off the kid while I was still lifting him up off the desk and pounding him back down. I was surprised I didn't kill or injure him. Just knocked the wind out of him, again and again and again. They transferred the kid to another school after they found out all the foul and vile things he was saying to me. I didn't care.
By the end of my senior year in high school, I had made it to the rank of Colonel in JROTC and had been promoted to the lofty position as Executive Officer for the entire division. I got to travel around from school to school harassing all my subordinates. I came upon on young freshman kid during an inspection. He was shaking and I asked him if he was nervous, he replied a resounding "Yes, sir!". I told him don't worry, this is just play, you look fine. I could have nailed him on five or ten gigs on his uniform but what was the sense. This was high school, not the Army. I didn't care.
I would have to say that even though the senior prom was fun, it was not much of a rememberable occasion for me as with most kids proms. Although the girl I was dating at the time was a very nice girl, I was just not into her as I should have been. I tried to make the event rememberable for her. I was thinking about the girls in college. I was smoking Kools. I didn't care.