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Tuesday, March 31, 2015

A Man's Character - Goethe

Monday, March 30, 2015

Kiss of Cold Air

1st October 2013

Dear Cassi,

What does it mean to love the kiss of cold air on my skin? Is it the relief from the heat of the feeling of space and freedom that it brings? I’ve never been a man to feel lonely even as I recognize the value of company. I find a comfort in solitude knowing that at last I am around those I can trust.

My world has always held in it some bleakness, but I find something poetic in turning to bleakness alone. Could it be that having so few in this world to trust has left me without those worth spending my time with, or is it only that I have no more time to spend? Then, can it be that my only hope is to look inward, and I still need to learn some self reliance?

These are the questions that bob about in my head as I listen to the hum of my fan here at work. There is a song to the night that wraps me in a peaceful wake and carries away my worry. Here in the heart of solitude I can find myself in the cool stillness free of worry.

These moments are few, Cassi, where I feel content, but I cherish every one of them for their rarity.

Know the good moments, little sister,

Richard Leland Neal

Monday, March 23, 2015

Old Vanity

2nd September 2013
Dear Cassi,
There are times in this life that I need honestly ask myself if the average person is capable of logic. After having complained for so long about the quality of the vanity the old contractor had used in his bathroom Pickles has opted to keep this article rather than replace it with a unit of better quality.
I can tell you time and time again that Pickles’ objection was that he had to spend money for repairs and complaints over quality were unfounded. For more than a year I have lived without a sink in my lavatory. Now it comes that all that was needed was the counter top and sink rather than a whole new unit. I could have done this myself.
After all the complaints and insults, after all the suffering and strife, Pickles just wanted a cheap job. Well, there is something bad about contractors being chosen by the lowest bidder. In all fairness, the contractor had a bad reputation.
Then, every contractor that has come to look at the job was rejected because they believed them to be dishonest. I think most contractors are dishonest and those that are honest are expensive to both conditions are prohibitive.
As for the fellow who put the counter in the bathroom, well, he was cheap but did a horrible job. The counter top was just a hair too large for the bathroom so in trying to get it in he scuffed the paint. In trimming the countertop he cut is in a jagged way leaving it ugly.
The cheap job won out over anything else but at least I can was my hands after I use the restroom. What can we do in this world of ours? Live and keep living.

Know what you want, little sister,

Richard Leland Neal

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Dark Spot

26th August 2013
Dear Cassi,
Over and over I’d had this vision in my head. This is not a dream of speak of or a hallucination, just a transient thought that crops up every now and then. I see an object in the darkness white and devoid of color like some star in the heavens. This is a vessel, a ship, a capsule containing the human soul. It sinks into the void as the stars grow dim.
Just as it has become the last point of brilliance in a darkening cosmoses, just as the stars have faded from white, to amber, and then to near imperception the vessel rises. It rises as if escaping from some cosmic maw. It rises and then I can no longer see it in the darkness.
Is this death I see or life. What is the image and the meaning? A wish I think. This is a wish to turn my life around in a single moment and rise from the darkness forever.
There is an ample nature to my darkness. Today Pickles made a comment to me that choosing between his sister and myself to govern his money was like choosing between the guillotine and the gallows. This is a man who would rather live in a slum than spend his money even with the threat of this money being taken from him as his disability must be too much if he can have so much in the bank.
He lives off the government dollar and wants to pack it all away. What is money if the reason for it is only to have it tucked away? I imagine I’ll never be so fortunate to know. As for Pickles, he is now his sister’s problem. If only that were as true in body as it was in finance. Well, I’d best get to the act of rising.

Rise above, little sister,

Richard Leland Neal

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Weather the Storm

12th August 2013
Dear Cassi,
I find it somewhat strange to contemplate that it has been a year now, or there about, that I have not had a sink in my bathroom. Having to wash my hands in the kitchen is something of an annoyance but the fact that pickles can choose to live this way that that Pony Girl can permit this to go on baffles me.
I’ve worked in places where the dirt and grime almost grow on your skin and great hoards of cockroaches play in open view so a dirty life in nothing to me. Still, it stands so far beyond my reason that when someone has the funds to live better then choose so difficult a situation.
I have to admit that I’ve made mistakes in trying to get this house back in order. I’ll be the first to say that, but I still wouldn’t have chosen this situation. That’s what happens when you deal with those of my blood relation, they’re all crazy and me, well, I just live here.

Weather the storm, little sister,

Richard Leland Neal

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Book Review: Under the Peach Tree By Lawrence Carr

A bit of what I can only call existentialist theater this little one-act play is a minimalist production that forces you to question yourself.

Sadly, there are few questions in so short a script and the real meaning and moral are hard to pick out. 

In truth, Under the Peach Tree, is even a misleading title for the play as the major active ingredient is fertilizer and not the shade of a peach tree.

Who should read this book:

Theater Geeks

ISBN 0-8059-7019-3

Total Books Read 6 of 5,000

Pages 18

Total Pages Read for 'The 5,000 Project' 1213

Monday, March 9, 2015

Sick Old Boy

5th August 2013
Dear Cassi,
If there is one thing I can tell you about old Porkchop the Bear Dog it’s that he is a sickly fellow. Over the weekend, he developed an abscess on his cheek that looked like an irregular tumor. It was a red-purple node of infected flesh about the size of a large grape. A second point of infection protruded from his ear. This second point was yellow and about the thickness of a stalk of hay.
I knew that a trip to the vet would run me at least three hundred dollars and that his problem wasn’t life threatening.  I decided to bleed the infection before putting the money into him as, well, I could do better things for my dog with three hundred dollars.
A word I picked up from the veterinarian is ‘express’ as in ‘I need to express the wound’ this is a fancy way of saying ‘milk it to get the infection out’. When I expressed the smaller wound it gave off yellow goop and went away but the larger wound was more persistent.
There was more blood than infection is this bizarre growth and expressing this was complicated as there were multiple sacs of fluid. When I cleaned the wound with peroxide I could see between four and six small holes where the fluid had come out. Every few hours I drained and cleaned his wound again. The big brown dog seemed to realize this was for his own good as once I even think he went to sleep.
The worst of these happenings for me was when the yellow goo hit me in the eye and made me weary of looking after the dog. Thankfully his infection is unlikely to transfer.

Hope he gets better, little sister,

Richard Leland Neal