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Well to start at the beginning I would need to remember it. So here is the beginning as I understand it to have happened. I was born May 1, 1979 in Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina. My parents, David and Debbie, were both intelligent and loving. Both had medical aspirations, he to be a doctor, her an R.N. So I assume everything went well for a while, I don't recall.

The first major event I can recollect is my parents divorce. I don't think it was that bad but certainly not good. My brother and I went to live with mom, as dad was still in med school. What I do know about that time seems rosy, but I was 5 or 6 so what else do you know when you are that age? Fast forward to February 22, 1988. I am 8 years old and mom is taking us to school. Even though I remember only vague impressions before and after this day I have that morning burned in my brain. It was early in the morning, between 5:30 and 6:00, and it was just starting to warm up. We had made mom late, as usual, and we hurried out the door. Mom had the early shift at the Red Cross, and had to drop us at day care before work. I remember it drizzling and being cold due to this. I got into the car and put on my seatbelt and then my coat. We were barely a mile from the house when the car lost traction and we ran into a telephone pole. The glass from the wind shield shattered and tiny pieces of it embedded in my up raised hands. The car stopped and I frantically struggled against my seatbelt, which was under my coat. When I managed to free myself and exit the vehicle, I heard my brother screaming. His foot was caught between the front passenger seat and the upright of the frame joining the front and rear doors. I left him there, unable to help, to go find help. I went to a house across the street and knocked on the door. A man , at least I believe it was a man, answered the door and I said to him "My mom got into an accident, could you call an ambulance?" I think that was the first time I hid myself. I was 8 years old and a somewhat studious child, but I wasn't crying and I should have been. I was trying to act like an adult, those miraculous creatures who are not fazed by anything. Then it all goes dead in my mind, I don't know how my brother got out, how I left the scene, anything. I faintly recall playing Atari at my best friends house. I don't remember the funeral although my brother does.

The next few years were extremely chaotic. I lived with my grand parents for a year or so immediately following mom's death. When I did live with my dad again, it was in another climate entirely. We moved to Oscoda, Michigan where he was a major at Wurtsmith Air force Base. That's when I really started to deviate from normalcy. My brother, father, and I lived with his girlfriend. At this time I liked the girlfriend, and family life was relatively normal. But school was different, I was small, inept at sports, and bookish. I did very little to fight this image, I always had a book in my hand and never talked to anyone. I used to go out at recess, and while the other kids would play kickball or whatever, I would pretend I was a robot. I don't mean choppy movement and raspy machine voice, I played with the idea that I was an advanced android who was designed to watch the habits of people. I lost interest when I realized that if i were such a machine, I would have the social skills to fit in. But it was easy to avoid problems then I would say they didn't bother me until we moved. A sound strategy seeing as I went from living with my grandparents to Oscoda and then Lansing and finally Saginaw.

In all these places nothing changed, with little exception I was ignored and I thought I didn't care. But then I hit puberty, and suddenly I was huge. I shot up to 6 foot 1 inches tall and was able to grow a goatee my 8th grade year. I started a new school, and then I had an epiphany. The world is completely random I thought. I am fundamentally the same person I was a few months prior, yet now my peers have new respect for me. I am just as good or evil as before and yet everyone treats me differently. So I turned my intellect towards becoming popular. I built stories, carefully crafted, of who I was. This became an obsession of mine, the ability to infiltrate the society that had so recently shunned me.

This brought me to my next hobby. Women. So beautiful and so mysterious. And there were hundreds of them where ever you looked. Any of you who happen to be psychologists, amateur or otherwise, may feel free to comment on the loss of my mother fueling my desire to fill the void in my life with women. Along these lines, you'll be happy to know that the women I go for typically share similar physical characteristics with my mom. So in women I had found the ultimate form of manipulation. I was a "playa" or so I thought. I needed to be wanted by women, and they were so trusting, at least at first. I never really meant any harm, but I loved it when my words, my skill got a girl to like me. I think it's probably similar to cracking a computer system. You know the protocols, you experiment with what works until you get a payoff. In this case what a payoff it is. I gave up my virginity at 12 years of age to a lovely 17 year old and didn't really hit a "dry spot" until 19.

I also found drugs. As my popularity grew I realized that my intelligence set me apart too much, so I started to act as though I had a room temperature IQ. This put me in a group of people who did lots of drugs. Nothing too hardcore, but I did drink a lot. I stopped going to school, and spent all my time drinking and smoking pot. I fought with my dad and most of all his new wife. She and I were complete opposites, she religious and responsible, and me full of hate. That is the period of my life when I became what I term "an anti-priest". I hated religion completely and thought anything normal was wrong. I would argue with anything that was considered popular just to make myself seem superior. I pitied people that didn't agree with me. The alcohol and drugs dulled the focus I had. I started to find concentration difficult. My personality dulled and diffused into the very idiot I was trying to emulate.

Luckily, but not by any effort of my own, a friend of mine got me a job in a local retail store. This job required fixing and delivering of home exercise equipment. I started to pay attention to my well being. I quit smoking cigarettes and weed, and started working out. I have been working out pretty much ever since. But I still wasn't happy. If anything the influx of confidence I got from putting on 30 lbs. of muscle made me more of an unrelenting asshole. I chased skirt, drank and fought almost constantly. In every way I thought the burning sense of hatred for everyone and everything was what happiness was.

One night, while out for a drink, I approached two girls and got ones phone number. It was really an innocuous event, I knew this girl wasn't easy and while pretty, she wasn't hot, not in the traditional sense of the word. Somehow while talking too her, I was able to tell the truth. I didn't lie to her intentionally, just to get in her pants. I felt able to be honest. It really was incredible, I had had long term girlfriends before, but had always cheated on them mercilessly. This girl was so pure, so religious, so totally wholesome, that I could not get her out of my mind. Her family life was also amazing to me, they loved each other and spent time with each other. They did all the things that my family had never had time for (dad was a doctor, on call most of the time). Well this bliss continued, at least on my part, for almost a year. Then on morning I was awakened before work by one of my roommates. He handed me the phone, and as I placed the handset to my ear, I could hear my brother sobbing. "Lew?" he asked plaintively. I said, "Yeah?" What follows is the ugliest period of time I have ever experienced. In that moment I realized that something horrible had happened and, without wanting to, I hope for it to be my grandfather or uncle or anybody else, but not... "Dad's Dead", he said breathlessly. So my world crumbled once again.

That was on August 24, of this year. Since this time I have lost my fragile little mind. The death of my father shakes me and renews my anger at the seeming unfairness of life. I know that you are supposed to say these things, but my father was a remarkable man. He was a doctor (OB/GYN) who also held degrees in chemistry and nuclear engineering. He never believed in the whole separation of class thing that is so prevalent in medical society. In fact my step-mother is going to a christmas party tonight that was suggested by my dad. He pushed to have the doctors and nurses go to the same party, rather than the usual separate shindigs. He was a scholar and a movie buff, a debater and a great father. I'm very glad to have spent time with him, and also happy that he lived to see my step-mother and I reconcile.

After his death the anger hit me full force again. And this time I covered God and all who believed in him in my rage. What kind of deity lets someone lose both their parents while other people have a beautiful family life? Unfortunately, most of this rage was borne by the girl whose beauty had made me so happy. I was so sure that I was right all the time that I never thought of her feelings or her religion. So she has left me, we are still friends but I don't know if we can ever fix the rifts caused jointly by my idiocy and her inability to tell me I'm an idiot. So now I am going into the next phase of my emotional control. As I stood over my fathers casket, I promised him one thing, that I would not drink or do recreational drugs of any kind until I have at least one degree. There goes drinking one of my favorite crutches. Next, women are not as interesting to me anymore. I have exhausted the possibilities of completely physical relationship. I mean how can any one night stand compare to making love to your lover, the woman you want to marry? There goes the other major crutch. So I rely on my sad rambling writing, trying to learn Linux for a life-long windows user, and the hope that sharing this somehow disperses the anger.

You are probably asking yourself, "Who cares? Life sucks all over." and you're right. But I would also like to end by giving you the benefit of the massive number of mistakes I have made and the things that have happened to me. First, you are not, nor have you ever been right. I don't mean you haven't ever guessed the right answer on Jeopardy, I mean the things that you cling to, your religion, or your politics, or your disagreement with either are not right. Just as you believe one thing in these categories, someone else disagrees with you just as fervently. Just try to keep that seed of humility in you, try to remember that if people don't agree with you, that doesn't mean they are an idiot. Do not piss off anyone you care about over bullshit that will make no difference if you find yourself at their funeral. Second, If you have someone that you love and you are fighting with them, give them a bye. Just let it go. If you really love them it will not kill you to apologize even when you think you're right. And finally, Leah, don't forget us remember this faithful documentation, this admission of guilt, this last ditch effort to show you that I am not lost. Remember my love for you, and that you made me a man that cares.

God Bless. Whatever God you believe in. G.L.P.

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