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THE SECRETS OF THE UNIVERSE simplified

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C:\fakepath\the secrets simplified

  1. 1. by Ralph Joseph Philippi
  2. 2. TITLE PAGE PUBLISHER: PROSPERITY INTERNATIONAL CORPORATION, LIMITED ROOM 813, HOLLYWOOD PLAZA 610 NATHAN ROAD, KOWLOON, HONG KONG PH.: +852 2132 9661 OR +86 898 6857 2551 FAX: +852 3007 1270 E-MAIL: ProsperityInternationalCorp@gmail.com CONTACT: RALPH JOSEPH PHILIPPI, Director, and Author TITLE: “THE SECRETS of the UNIVERSE simplified” FIRST PUBLISHED: 26 July 2010 RELEASE DATE: 9 August 2010 ISBN 978-988-19313-2-0 All rights are reserved. No part of this Book can be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without prior written permission from RALPH JOSEPH PHILIPPI, the Author, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews. Please refer all pertinent questions, or comments, to the Author. The Author is responsible for the contents of this Book. PRINTED IN HONG KONG by, PROSPERITY INTERNATIONAL CORPORATION, LIMITED. THIS IS AN ENGLISH LANGUAGE PUBLICATION. THIS Book consist of 152 pages including a Front Insert Page, as a HARD BOUND BOOK IN ITS ORIGINAL FORM, BUT, IT ALSO BEING MADE AVAILABLE IN AN ELECTRONICALLY TRANSMITTABLE VERSION. This Book IS “NOT INTENDED TO BE FOR SALE”. THIS BOOK IS INTENDED TO “HELP PEOPLE”, and it will be given “FREE-OF-CHARGE” to anyone who desires to have an original of this Book in the electronically transmittable version only. Hard Bound Books are available, at our costs of printing, binding, and shipping. The picture on the front cover is titled “Golden Drop”, from STOCK.EXCHNG. Refer to the “Appreciation & Acknowledgement” Section of this Book for further information. ii
  3. 3. iii
  4. 4. OUR WISH OF R H PE EACE AN PRO ND OSPERIT TY TO ALL L iv
  5. 5. Dis sclaim mer Reasonable care has be een tak ken to ensure e that the information present ted in th Book is accurate. However, the his k read der shou unde uld erstand t that the informa e ation provided does d not constitu ute lega medic al, cal, or professio p vice, in any onal adv form Profe m. essionals in these fields should a s e s always be consul lted. No Liability This Book is supp y: plied “as is” a and with hout war rranties. All warranties, expres ssed or implied, are her reby disc claimed. Use of this Book, c constitut tes acceptance o the “No Liabi of ility” policy. If you do not ag gree with this p policy, y you are not mitted to use, or distribu perm o r ute, this product t. The Autho or, Publisher, their employees, e aff, sta age ents, ociates, and affi asso iliates, s shall not be liable for an losse or t ny es dam mages whatso oever, includin ng, without w limitat tion, cons sequential loss or dam mage, directly or indirectly, ari ising from the use of this Book, s m s should any occur r. This Book is being w s s written, publishe and g ed, given fre ee-of-cha arge, for non-com mmercial, educat tional pu urposes o only. No c copyrigh infring ht gement is intended. v
  6. 6. ROAD LESS TRAVELED Two roads diverged in a yellow wood And sorry I could not travel both And be one traveler, long I stood And looked down one as far as I could To where it bent in the undergrowth Then took the other as just as fair And having perhaps the better claim Because it was grassy and wanted wear Through as for that, the passing there Had worn them really about the same And both that morning equally lay In leaves no step had trodden black Oh, I kept the first for another day! Yet, knowing how way leads onto way I doubted if I should ever come back I shall be telling this with a sigh Somewhere ages and ages hence Two roads diverged in a wood And I took the one less traveled by And that has made all the difference -- Robert Lee Frost -- vi
  7. 7. D EDICAT TION This Bo is dedic ook cated to my Children, whom hav always b the ins ve been spiration in my life, even th hough it ma be diffic for the to realiz that bas fact. T basic fact has ay cult em ze sic This f always been true, no matte where I have bee / travellled to, and this ba fact er en nd, asic remains true, now and foreve Amen. s er, This Bo is espec dedica to my Grandchilldren, and m Great G ook cially ated y my Grandson, and the Grandcchildren, an Great G nd Grandchildre to come most of w en e, whom, I ha never met yet, ave m and ma never wiill be able t so, which has nothin to do wiith any of t ay to h ng them, and, also, to my niec and nep ces phews, and their childr ren. I am v happy that they are a part of my life experienc even if I may nev have very e's ce, ver portunity to come to kn each o them on a personal basis, just knowing th they the opp now of hat are ther is sufficient, and e re, extremely sa atisfying, in my life. n This Bo is for al of you, a with a of the ot readers also. I h that alll of you ook all along all ther s, hope will find something in this Bo which will be usef in your llife. I truly do hope so. d g ook, ful y s Just one more thou which I would liike to conve to all of you, e ught, h ey It is no our place to judge a other, so please do not try to do so. ot e; any d o As my Grandfath Briggs use to say – y her "W you p your finger at an When point f nyone else, look to see, How m finge are point back a you?" many ers ting at No truer word have eve been spo o ds er oken. Therefore please tak these wo to hear for they have deep meaning, e, ke ords rt, Which I now un h, nderstand, he knew, when he sta them t me. w ated to vii
  8. 8. STAND WITH YOUR HEAD HELD HIGH DURING THE GOOD TIMES AND THE BAD IT IS WITHIN YOU TO BE WHATEVER YOU WANT TO BE THAT DECISION RESTS WITH YOU ALONE viii
  9. 9. APPRECIA & ACKNOW ATION WLEDGEM MENT I WAN TO EXT NT TEND MY SINCEREST APPRE ECIATION TO THE FOLKS AT, AND T CONTR RIBUTORS TO S STOCK.EXCHNG K G – http://www.sxc.hu/ / I WOU ULD ALSO LIKE TO E EXTEND M SINCER MY REST APPR RECIATION TO THE N FOLKS AT AND A CON NTRIBUTOR RS TO, flickr @ http://www w.flickr.c com/, ESPECIALLY THE E CONTRIBUTORS T “CREAT TO TIVE COM MMONS”. IT WO OULD HAV BEEN E VE EXTREMEL DIFFICU LY ULT TO PUT THIS BOOK, AND MY A OTHER R BOOKS, S THER, TOGET WITHOUT W A NICE SELECT TION OF YOUR WOND HOTOS. DERFUL PH YOU HAVE SO MANY WONDER Y TOS TO CHOOSE RFUL PHOT FROM, IT IS INC CREDIBLE. NO ON CAN PO NE VIEW ALL O THEM, IN A LIFE TIME. OSSIBLE V OF E THANK YOU ALL, VERY MUCH. ALL OF YOU ARE APPR K L L RECIATED. I WOU RTFELT APPRECIATIO , TO, ULD ALSO LIKE TO EXPRESS MY HEAR ON ELAINE MARIE CHARPE E ENTIER PH HILIPPI, M SON’S DEDICAT MY TED WIFE, FOR DO E OING A GRAND JOB OF EDITING THE D SECOND EDIT TION OF T THIS BOO , OK WHICH WILL H BE OUT SOMETIME IN JAN T NUARY 20 011. THA YOU, VERY MUC . ANK CH ix
  10. 10. YOU HAVE NO LIMITS AS THE SKIES HAVE YOU HAVE THE POWER WITHIN YOU TO BECOME, BE, AND DO WHATEVER YOU TRULY DESIRE x
  11. 11. F OREWORD As you begin to read this Book, you may get the first impression that this Book is some form of confession or something similar to that, which, it is not, just keep on reading, and you will come to the underlying principles, later on. The principles become very clearer, towards the end. There are some deep understandings in this material, some of which, I really do not understand myself, yet. The only logic to any of what is being explained in the beginning is in The Conclusion, where you will be shown how to use what has already been discussed, previously. Inside of this Book is a practical application, which has worked for me, many times over, and continues to work for me, to this present day. Moreover, the principles in this Book have worked for others that I have explained these principles to, no matter what their faith, creed, or beliefs, were, which made absolutely no difference to me, at all, it worked for all of them, when they applied these principles outlined herein. It just works, which is all that I can say. Furthermore, this in not to say that what the other Masters and Teachers are saying is not true, because the vast majority of what I have read and saw, is true and functional, in one way or another. I profess to be neither, a Master nor a Teacher. So, please feel free to pursue what you feel and believe to be true and correct for you. I strongly encourage you to do so, because it is your life, and you deserve to find that right path that feels just right for you, in all aspects of your life. It is your life, so I encourage all of you to follow your own personal quests, no matter where they will lead, it will be your own life’s experience, and no one should be cheated out of doing things, their way, as long as what they want to do, does not harm anyone else in the process. Additionally, this Book is in no way a negative reflection towards The Secret©, those people did a truly spectacular job. As Joseph John Campbell put it, so well, many years ago, “Follow Your Bliss”, These words, pretty much sum it all up. xi
  12. 12. THERE IS ALWAYS A BRIGHTER SIDE LOOK FOR IT IT WILL ALWAYS THERE xii
  13. 13. I NTRODUCTION I want to do some clarification at first, because as you start reading through this Book, you may get the initial impression that this Book is another Self-Help Book, and, in a way, it is. But, this Book is really about Liberty and Freedom, YOUR personal Liberty and Freedom to become, be, and do, whatever you want to, with your life, that is, within the Laws of the Nation in which you chose to live. This may appear to be somewhat strange to most people, because here I am, sitting at my desk in China, writing about your personal Freedom and Liberty. Therefore, at this point in time, I want to explain to all of my readers, that most, if not all, of what you have heard and read about China is not true. Never attempt to judge anyone, or any Nation, by what you see and hear on television, or read in any newspaper or magazine articles. Later, about the first part of next year, I will write a book about the “True China”, and I am very sure that you will be impressed by what it will show you, about the True China. Here, I want to point out that all of my friends and acquaintances that have come to visit me, here in China, are always impressed by the simplicity of life here, and the personal freedom, to do and become whatever you may chose, in this Great Land of Opportunity. All of them, without exception, have emphatically declared, what they have heard, saw, and read, is not true. Shortly, you will be able to judge for yourselves, when you read my upcoming book, which will also be free. I will put in plenty of pictures; thereby you will be able to see, what is real. But, as one small example of our personal freedoms, here in China, I can walk across any busy street in any town, village, or city, in China, possibly taking my life in to my own hands, but, you be assured, that I will never end up with a Jaywalking Ticket. Try that one, in any Western Nation, and you will see what you end up with, if you do it often enough, a big fat ticket, which is going to be for a very hefty sum of money, to inhibit you from every doing that again. This is always the first freedom that I show to my visitors to China. However, I always do it in a safe manner, when there is no traffic; to begin with; they learn to dodge the cars, later on. It is fun, and saves time. None hit, yet, and, you are welcome to come and play. (By the way, pedestrian and people on bicycles have the right-of-way, here.) xiii
  14. 14. EVEN IF YOU A E F ARE NO ABLE TO REA THE NOTES OT E AD E S THE MUSIC STILL PLAYS ON E C L S LIFE IS THE SAME YOU DO NOT N Y O NEED TO KNOW IT AL O W LL YOU ON Y NLY HA AVE TO G GO, WITH YOU OWN FLOW UR N W WH HAT FEE ELS GOO TO Y OD YOU xiv
  15. 15. T ABLE OF CONTENTS TITLE PAGE .......................................................................................................... II DISCLAIMER .......................................................................................................... V DEDICATION ........................................................................................................ VII APPRECIATION & ACKNOWLEDGEMENT ....................................................................... IX FOREWORD........................................................................................................... XI INTRODUCTION .................................................................................................. XIII TABLE OF CONTENTS .............................................................................................. XV THE STORY BEGINS ................................................................................................. 1 WHAT I DIDN’T DO................................................................................................ 97 WHAT I DID DO .................................................................................................. 103 WHAT WALLACE DELOIS WATTLES SAID TO DO ......................................................... 107 THE CONCLUSION ............................................................................................... 117 A SPECIAL REQUEST ............................................................................................ 129 HOW TO PRINT THIS BOOK AND/OR READ THE ELECTRONICALLY TRANSMITTED VERSION... 133 ~ LIGHT ~ A CHINESE PROVERB ........................................................................... 136 If you were looking to this page To tell you what is inside, You are only kidding yourself, You will have to read this Book, To see what it says, and, How, what it says will benefit you. xv
  16. 16. NEVER FEAR STANDING ALONE THAT IS HOW MOST OF US CAME IN TO THIS WORLD AND HOW MOST OF US WILL GO OUT LIVE YOUR LIFE, YOUR OWN WAY AND TO HECK WITH THE REST SURE YOU ARE GOING TO MAKE MISTAKES THESE ARE ONLY A PART OF YOUR EXPERIENCE CALLED LIFE xvi
  17. 17. T HE STORY BEGINS This small story will only cover a short period in my life, less than 2 years. I will reveal more on my life, in my upcoming book, “The Ebbs and Flows of Life – How to Ride the Tides in Life, and Find Joy in All of It”. However, you will not get it all there, either, because I have already started on my autobiography, which I will title, “The Wisconsin Farm Boy”. This will be a real adventure to read, because my life has been very interesting, to say the least. Therefore, this part of the story begins. Back in the early part of 1978, I was disfellowshipped from my congregation. I had not done anything illegal, and I did mount a very strong appeal, which never came to heard, because it was blocked. So be it, it was a very long time ago, and I hold no grudges, nor any animosity, towards anyone involved, not any longer. I was destroyed emotionally, as well as physically. I thought that this was the lowest point in my entire life, but I had not even begun to hit the bottom yet. I lost my business, had to file for bankruptcy, and was forced to take a job as a Construction Superintendent to be able to provide for my family, which was not so bad to begin with, but everything when downhill, even further. A few months later, I was facing a divorce, and, yes, it was my fault, entirely. I had no one to blame, except myself, and I did a good job of doing just that. Now, all was lost. I even quit my new job, because I honestly could not work any longer. I could not concentrate on anything other than my troubles. Now, I was really at the lowest point in my life, or so I thought, because it even got worse later, if you can imagine that. My wife and I went to counseling, which prove to be beneficial, because she decided that she did really love this fool, even with all of his mistakes. A few months later, we were back together, and heading for Oregon.
  18. 18. We ha lived there be ad efore, for a shor period of time, and we both rt , e enjoye it very much. There wa no way that I w ed y as y was going to stay in our g little t town, or e even in th area, so, we decided th we wo hat d hat ould move back up to Oregon a again, and get a fre d esh start. We pa acked up the kids, our thing what we could carry in a large va and gs, w an my pic ckup, which I was towing, a and headed out. When we arrive tensio ed, ons were high from the long trip, so we got a small m o hotel room to get some rest. T e The next day, I w went over to the Oregon r O ical Electri Insp pection Departme ent in Salem, to get my Ele ectrical Journe eyman’s L License re enewed. The pers son at the counter must ha e r ave felt sorry for me, b because I had not done an of the mandato t ny ory, keep ping up with the codes for almos 5 years but he renewed my licen anywa st s, nse ay. After t that, I pic cked up e everyone, and we headed u to Por up rtland, so that I o could check in with the Electrica Union there, to get some work, which I al t e w was able to sec cure. Even w with all o this, w of when we w woke up the next day, ten nsions we still ere high, and we g in to a big argu got ument, which resu w ulted in m wife, lo my oading up wh we had unpack hat ked, taking the kids, and he eading back home again. Theref fore, ther I was no place to stay, ten buc re e , cks in my pocket, and a y week to go bef fore I wou get a paycheck uld k. This st was not the bottom of this pit, ye There was still more to go. till et. e o Lif really is not a bowl of cherries fe y f s. An nd, the next thing out of your mo n g outh is go oing to be “That’s not a bow of cherries.” e, wl Ir rest my case. Yo are entirely cor ou rrect, and neither is life. d, 2
  19. 19. That afternoon, after my wife and children were long gone, I headed over to my new job, to see where it was located. Once I found it, I drove out to the nearest public woods, and found a nice place to park, to spend my nights in my little Mazda pick-up. Fortunately, it did not use much gas, so I just put five bucks in the tank, to make sure that I could get back and forth to work for the next week, at least. I then bought a few crackers, and an inexpensive thermos. There was a little stream near buy, so I had water to drink and bath in, even though it was very cold. It was late summertime there, so, there were a few blackberries on some nearby bushes that I could eat after work. (The crackers did not last long.) At the end of that week, I was completely famished, when I got my first paycheck. Blackberry diets are not the way to go, that one you can take my word on, but it sure beats going hungry. (Even though, it did take me a few years to be able to look one in the eye again.) During that time, I only had to go down to the bank that the paycheck had been issued from, and get it cashed, with my driver’s license as my only required identification. So, as soon as I got it, That night, I got a small, inexpensive, hotel room, took a nice hot shower, had a nice warm shave, and had a good hot meal, which felt very good. I slept like a log that night. Sleeping in a little, Mazda pick-up is not cracked up to be what people may expect. It is very cramped quarters, and extremely difficult to find a comfortable position in, to get any really good sleep, and since it could rain at any time, trying to sleep outside of the little pick-up, wasn’t a viable option for me. Have any of you people out there, reading this Book, ever tried to shave in ice-cold water? I can tell you from my own personal experience that is not very nice. However, I managed, and things did appear to be going much better. At least now, I had a good place to sleep, I could take a hot shower, and hot water to shave with, a full tank of gas, and jingle in my pocket to be able to eat on. Things were really beginning to look up for me, or, so I thought, because there was still much more trouble ahead, which I did not know at that time. Anyway, I was enjoying what I now had, and that is all that really mattered at the time. 3
  20. 20. Well, there is a part that I left out in the beginning of this story, and that was that this was my second marriage. I had custody of my three children from my first marriage, which was unusual then. But, I did have legal custody, which is an entirely different story, which has no real bearing on what I am about to explain to you, so please forgive the exclusion of most of the details of that part of my life, here. Well, during this time of the year, my children were off visiting their mother for the summer, which was the terms of my custody, their entire summer vacation time, and, they were supposed to be returning home soon. Therefore, with my second week’s paycheck, I rented a small apartment with two bedrooms in a different hotel. Now, I was ready for their return from their summer vacation. On Monday I went in to work and told my boss that I had to take a couple of hours off from work, because I needed to go to the school to see what was the procedure for me to register my three children here, who were going to be with me shortly, and, he said, okay, come back as soon as you can. It turned out that it would be a simple matter to register them in their new school here. No problem at all. The school would even request their old transcripts. Boy, I was home free, now, or, so I thought. That evening, right after work, I called my ex-wife to ask when she would be returning the children, but, she was not longer at her parents’ home, she had moved to Texas with my kids, but, my ex-mother-in-law told me that my daughter, Deborah (Debbie, as she prefers to be called), wanted to return home to be with me. Well, thank God over that one, this is not to say that I was a very religious person at that point in my life, because it surely was not. Religion to me, at that time, was sort of like a cuss word, I did not want any part of that, nor did I have any need for it. Well, two week later, she was returned to my sister’s home, so I drove down to pick her up, over that weekend. Moreover, being that it was the weekend, my attorney there, was not available for any consultation. 4
  21. 21. Early Monday morning, I went over to my work, introduced my daughter to my boss, and asked for a few hours off, to get her enrolled in school, which he granted, and I did do. During my noon lunch break, I called my attorney, who had gotten the divorce from my first wife, and asked him what to do. He said that I would have to come back down and get a triple certified of my divorce decree, then retain a competent attorney in Texas, and go to court there, to see if I could get my two boys back. Which he was unsure of, but he did tell me that he could recommend a competent attorney there, which he did, and, all without charging me a cent. Texas was two hours ahead of us, and I only had half an hour for my lunch break, which meant that I did not have enough time to call the recommended attorney at that time, and it would be too late when I got home from work. So, I called him the next day, during my lunch break, and the first thing out of his mouth, was that he could not guarantee anything, and yes, he did need to see a triple certified true copy, from the court, of my divorce decree, along with $5000 Dollars, as a non- refundable deposit, and that it may cost more, if we had to go to court, more than once. I asked him how long it would take us to get in to court, once I got there will all of his requested documentation, and he said about two weeks, if we are lucky. (Now, mind you, in those days, a retainer of $5000 was a whole lot, and a non-refundable retainer for that amount, just was not heard of. However, it was, what it was, and I did not want to argue with him over the price.) At that time, I was looking at another $2500 Dollars for hotel accommodations, food, taxis, my round trip ticket there, and two more, without any advance booking, which was impossible to do, because I had no idea as to what the outcome would be, once I got there. He also told me that I needed to hurry, because the longer that they stayed there, the harder it would be to get them back. Even at Union Journeyman’s Electricians pay, I was looking at a minimum of 10 weeks, even if I did not pay anything else, and went back to sleeping in my little Mazda pick-up again. Besides, I had just enrolled my daughter in school, so, that was not realistic, either. 5
  22. 22. And, to make things worse, when I got home from work that evening, I had a notice from the Finance Company, where I had my business trucks financed, and they said that my little Mazda pick-up, which was all paid for, was part of my collateral pledged on the loans of the other trucks, so I would have to turn that one in also. Wow, I really did not need this. I called the Finance Company the next day, during my lunch break, and they confirmed that I would have to turn my little Mazda pick-up in to their nearest associate in Portland. I asked them if I could buy the truck from them, and I was told that this was against their company policy, because I had a recent bankruptcy on my credit history, which was logical. Therefore, I asked them if I could please have a couple of weeks to do this, because I needed to get another vehicle. In addition, they said, yes, but not more. Thank God for small favors. (I had asked for two weeks to deliver my little Mazda pick-up to them, because that is how long that I thought that it would take me to save up enough for a used vehicle.) Yet, here I was, having to turn in my little Mazda pick-up, an ex-wife who has refused to return two of my children, which meant that I had to go to court in another State, or concede that she could have them, without any fight, which was against my nature to do. After all, I had fought hard and long to get them in the first place, because my, then wife, had found a new boyfriend, whom she wanted to marry, and he did not want the kids, so we went to court and I was granted custody of them, which my ex-in- laws did not like very much, because it gave them a bad image in our little community, where my ex-father-in-law was a Police Officer, so it was a constant ongoing battle to keep them. Moreover, now, she had a new boyfriend in Texas, whom she was living with, and she took my children to live with them. What a real mess, when I least needed it. I now had a new priority to contend with, transportation. Here, I would like to emphatically emphasize that I do not hold grudges, yes; I get angry, as most people do, but it does not take me long to cool back down, and try to move on with my life. After all, trying to get even for apparent wrong doings, just takes too much time, energy, and in most cases, a whole lot of money, which I do not like wasting on frivolous things, like getting even. It happened, so just accept it for what it is, 6
  23. 23. someone who thinks that they were wronged by you, in the first place, or at least had the potential to be wronged by you, and move on with your life. It will not really solve anything, even if you stand there and fight. They will only think that they were right, even if you win; so why waste the time, energy, and money, to fight; just move on with your life. When my ex-wife told me that she had found a new boyfriend, which was not the first time, a person whom she said that she loved very much and wanted to marry, I just accepted it. That is not to say that it was not a difficult situation, because it certainly was. However, what was I going to be able to do about it, anyway? Nothing. Therefore, I just accepted it, as she presented it. The good part was that her new boyfriend did not want our kids, so I was granted custody of them, at a time when this was not normal. Nevertheless, I accepted that responsibility also, and, happily. Okay, so where am I now, soon to have no vehicle, a daughter to take care of, who was a real joy in my life, an ex-wife who has taken my other two children illegally and I didn’t have the money to go to court in Texas to even try to get them back, a wife that hates me and is going to sue me for a divorce at any time now, and very little money in the bank. So what do I do now? I decided that the first thing that I needed to do was to locate some suitable transportation, because mine would be gone very soon. That evening, I bought a local newspaper, and looked in the classified ads for a suitable vehicle, which we, my daughter, and I could look at this coming weekend. We located a little Pinto station wagon on Saturday, which was not too expensive and was in excellent shape, but there was no way that I could pay for it within my two week limit, when I had to turn in my little Mazda pick-up, so, I called to see if they would give me an extension, of up to one month, their reply was, we settled on two weeks, and two weeks it will be, or we will have to take further action. That settled that, and not exactly how I would have liked it to be, either. However, I knew that the first thing on the agenda was to get reliable transportation and quickly, because walking back and forth to work, was 7
  24. 24. not a realistic option in the States, at that point in time, especially when it was 12 miles each way. (My daughter and I had decided on the Pinto station wagon, just in case I did get the boys back. We could not be putting three kids and an adult in the front seat of a small pick-up, if we wanted to go anywhere together, and they surely could not ride in the back, because in Oregon, it can rain at any time.) On Monday, I told a fellow worker, whom had befriended me, about my upcoming transportation problem. I told him that we had found a car, but they wanted cash for it, which I did not have, but they said that they could wait for me to come up with it. He told me that our Union had a Credit Union and that I should join it, which only took a deposit of $100 to open an account. Then I could apply for a loan, using an automatic payment program, which would make an automatic deduction from my pay from my employer. I told him that I had just filed for bankruptcy a few months ago, so they probably would not give me a loan. He told me that did not matter, because it was a Credit Union, and they would use the car as the collateral, but I had to put down a good down payment, and they would pay for the balance. We finished work at 4:30 PM, and my daughter was already home from school, and, the Credit Union was open until 6:00 PM, so, I picked my daughter up and we headed straight for our Credit Union. We walked in the door, and I showed them my paid up dues receipt for that month, and request that I be allowed to open up an account with them, which they did. I then asked to see a Loan Officer, and I was shown to one. I explained everything to her, including my recent bankruptcy, and she said that there was no problem at all, I only had to make a 25% down payment on my own, and they would finance the rest, through automatic payroll deduction. Now, we were getting somewhere, because I had most of that in the bank already, and I could manage the rest on Friday’s paycheck. Therefore, we drove to the couple who had the little Pinto station wagon, and explained everything to them. I would be there next Saturday to make a 25% down payment, then they would have to go to my Credit Union with the title to the car, sign it over to them, and they would pay them the balance, which they liked very much. 8
  25. 25. Therefore, the following Saturday, my daughter and I were at their door, with cash in hand. (I did not want to use a check, because that would have taken 2 working days to clear, so, we paid in cash.) They told me that this car use to belong to their daughter, who had gone back east to go to University, and decided to stay there, and didn’t need it, but she needed money, so she asked her parents to sell the car for her, which was simple, because it was registered in her parents’ names. Now, all of us were going to be happy, because we, my daughter and I, would have reliable transportation, the car was only two years old, with very little mileage on it, and, their daughter would have the cash. On Monday evening, my daughter and I met them at my Credit Union, where they signed over the ownership document to my Credit Union, and was paid the balance by check. My Credit Union told me that it would take them a couple of days, or so, to get the ownership document changed over in to the Credit Union’s name, so I would have to wait until that was completed, before I could take possession of the car, which was perfectly okay with me. On Thursday evening, I received notification from my Credit Union that the transfer had been completed, but I needed to get insurance, before they would turn over the car to me. Therefore, the next morning, when I reported to work, I asked my boss if I could take a longer lunch break because I needed to get some car insurance, and he said, sure, which I did. That night after work, I picked up my daughter again, and took my insurance policy down to my Credit Union. They called the people, and told them that they could give me the car, any time that was convenient for them. They said any time, come on over and pick it up now, your check has cleared, so it is no longer ours. I told them that I could not be there until the next morning, Saturday, because I had something that I needed to do first. My daughter and I drove straight over to the Finance Company’s Associate, but they were closed. I knew that they would be open on Saturday at 9:00 AM, because that is what was posted on their front door. We were there nice and early the next morning, before anyone arrived, and, waited on them to come in, but the Manager was late, so we waited. 9
  26. 26. When he arrived, the f first thing that he did, was start in on me, about g e s n being late. I told him that I w was not late, I ha been t ad there the night e before and the were c e, ey closed, wh hich was not my fa ault, so, h accept he ted my little M Mazda pi ick-up, and gave me a re eceipt for it. r I t then aske the ed Secret tary, if sh could c he call us a C Cab, beca ause we n needed to go back home, o k which she did, and we thanked h for doing. her When the taxi arrived, we went straight to the co ouple’s home to pick up p our, s slightly used, new car. w Then, we took a nice driv over to the T e ve Orego Coast t have a nice dinn on to ner, to ce elebrate o victory our y. One dow and a whole lot more to go. wn t The ne day, S ext Sunday, I called m Sister to ask he if she w my er would got down t to the courthouse and get me a triple certified t e c true copy of my divorce y d decree which shows th I have custody of my t e, hat y three children, fro my om first m marriage. She asked me, “W What is going on?” Therefo g ” ore, I exp plained everyt thing to h her, including how we just got lucky with be w y eing able to get our ne car, an she said, “Sure I will get you a triple cer ew nd, e, g rtified true copy of you divorce decree, especia ur ally the part wher you have custody of p re your c children. I will let you know when I have it, so that y you can tell me t where to send it.” I to her th I would pay whatever it cost, an she e old hat nd said, “ “That was okay, no to worry about that.” s ot I now changed my focu to the next thin that I needed t take ca of, d us ng to are which was my children, and the safety eir y. I was greatly c concerned over my so ons. This was not to say th their mother w hat m was a bad mom, be ecause she w was not. It was o only that this was her four rth boyfriend that I was aware of, since we had parted, s how lo e e so, ong this o one last, a and what would happe to my c en children, if they se eparated. These w were my m main conc cerns. 10
  27. 27. I now started on the first step of this quest, by getting a triple certified true copy of my divorce decree. Three days later, in the evening, after I had gotten home from work, my Sister called, to let me know that she had the triple certified true copy of my entire divorce decree, which did show that I did have permanent custody of my children, and that my ex-wife only had visitation rights. Then she went on to tell me that she also had gotten triple certified true copies of the other three times that I had been in court with my ex-wife, maintaining my custody of the children, which I had done successfully, all three times. (This was not any of my ex-wife’s doings, as I explained before; it was my ex-in-laws that were doing this, because they did not want to lose respect in our small community. Nothing worse to contend with, then a really ticked off Cop. Again, I do want you all to know, that I hold no grudge against any one, as I have said before. It was just their thing, and I had to defend myself, for my children’s sake. If it had been only on me, they could have kept everything that they wanted, and I would have moved on with my life. However, my children were involved, so I was forced to fight, and I was successful, every time. As an old friend once told me, “When you need an attorney, badly, you need him, or her, very, very, good.” Good advice, which I have always taken to heart.) She then went to tell me that her and Gary, her husband, had discussed my situation, and that they were willing to loan me the $5,000 for the attorney, but I would have to come up with the rest, because that was all that they could spare. She said that she could send me the money, whenever I wanted it, and, I told her to hold on to it, until I get to Texas, and got an account from the attorney there, where she could send it directly in to his account. She told me that she would send the triple certified true copies of everything to me by express mail the next day, which she did. Hallelujah !!! Now, things were really starting to look up. Well, it took me another month to save up for the trip and the expenses, then, I was ready to go, and get my children back, if that was possible? There was no way to telling that, according to the attorney, there in Texas, until after I had gotten there, and he could review the triple certified true copies of my divorce decree. 11
  28. 28. The next day, Saturday, I went over to my boss’s home, to explain to him what I needed to do, and ask for a couple of weeks off from work, at least, which he allowed me to do, once he understood the situation. He just told me, “Go and Win, and don’t come back, until you do”. The next step was the care of my daughter, while I was gone. I didn’t want to bring her with me, because I didn’t know lay ahead, and I certainly didn’t want to put her in a situation, whereby my ex-wife could take her away from me also, if I lost. In addition, daughters are very special creatures, in that you must be very careful with whom you leave them with. I decided on leaving her with my friend, my co-worker, who was the one that had told me about our Credit Union, because he had two small sons, and his wife was one of those perfect mothers. I knew that she would be safe there, so we drove on over to ask, if she could stay with them, for about two weeks, minimum, and hopefully, not longer. They agreed, and my new friend, even said that she would not have to miss any school, because he would take her to school on his way to work, and pick her up from school after work. (At that time, in the States, anyone could pick up your child from school, but things change.) I offered to pay them something for taking care of her, but they refused, knowing why I wanted to leave her with them. I asked if I could bring her by that evening, because then, I could catch the Sunday flight to Texas, and, they agreed to that. We headed back to our little hotel apartment, packed up some her clothes, of course, she did the picking, and I did the packing, along with some of her girly things, which she said that she need to pack herself, so she did. I then called the airlines at the airport, to see what was available to San Antonio, Texas, for the next day, and there was a flight in the afternoon, which was just right. We then headed back over to my friend’s home, and I dropped off my little sweetheart, into the hands of, almost, strangers, because I had a mission to accomplish. I kissed her on the cheek, good-bye, and she started to cry, but said, “Go ahead, I know that you must do this”. She then handed me a crumpled up piece of paper, which had the address of 12
  29. 29. where my boys were. Therefore, I gave her another kiss on the cheek, and told her, Thank you very much, everything will be all right. She said, I know Dad, do what you have to do, and get back here as quickly as you can, which I promised her that I would do. I then went out to the airport, to pay for, and pick up my ticket, for the next day’s travel. I arrived in San Antonio, late that evening, I got a taxi, and asked him, if he knew of a reasonable hotel close by the courthouse, that he could take me to, and, he recommended a very nice one, which was not one from a chain. It was very nice, and the people there were very friendly. I booked in for a couple of weeks, paid for the total stay in cash, got my receipt, and settled in for the night. Early the next morning, I cleaned up, and headed down for my breakfast, which was very good, a nice, old fashioned, Ranch Style breakfast, with plenty of everything imaginable, and plenty of coffee to wash it all down with. It was just too much, but I managed to enjoy it anyway. I simply, stuffed myself. Boy, was it good, and, the best part of it all was that it was included in the price of the room. I then headed over to the attorney’s office, and low and behold, his secretary told me that he was in court for the day, and, that he wouldn’t be returning to his office until late that evening, so, she made me a tentative appointment for 10:00 AM the next morning, if he didn’t have to return to court the next day. Therefore, I headed back over to my hotel, and they had a very nice Mexican Buffet that evening. Hey, I was still stuffed from the breakfast, but, somehow, I manage to put a nice dent in the Mexican Buffet, too. It also was excellent. Moreover, people wonder why they are overweight. Well, there is the answer, just too much good food around. After the Mexican Buffet, I had to take nice long walk, then, I returned to the hotel, to settle in for the evening, to be ready for the next day. The next morning, it was the same cycle all over again, that morning, the nice, old fashioned, Ranch Style breakfast, with plenty of everything imaginable, and plenty of coffee to wash it all down with. However, I was 13
  30. 30. still suffering with indigestion from the Mexican Buffet the night before, so I could not eat much, this time. I, mainly, just sat there, and nursed my coffee, until it was time to go to the attorney’s office, once again. I arrived ahead of my appointment time, and I was surprised, because his secretary led me in to his conference room immediately. He came in almost immediately, and I explained everything to him and handed him all of my triple certified true copies of the court documents, including my divorce decree, which granted my complete custody of my children, and the triple certified true copies of the other three times that we had gone to court, and I had won. I then asked him for his wiring instructions for one of his accounts, so that I could have my sister send in his $5,000 non-refundable retainer. He said that he would return in just a few minutes, which he did, with a big smile on his face, and an Invoice, with his wiring instructions on it. I then asked him, how long it would take us to get in to court. He simply said that he had to review the documents, which should not be longer than it would take my sister’s transfer to be deposited in to his account, then, he would get back to me. I left him my number at the hotel, and he said that he would call me, in a few days, as soon as his bank notified him that his retain was deposited in to his account. I headed back to the hotel, to send the wiring instructions to my sister, we were two hours ahead of where she was living, so she still had enough time to get the wire out that same day, which she did do, and she even sent me a copy of the wire transfer, later that evening, which is impossible to get from any bank, anywhere, these days. Things change. The next Friday, I did receive a call from the attorney’s secretary, telling me that the retainer had been received, and that the attorney would like to see me that afternoon at 4:00 PM, which I gladly accepted, his kind invitation to visit with him, once again. Again, I arrived early, and I was led in the same conference room. Moreover, again, he entered almost immediately. He told me that he had gone over all of the documents that I had brought, and that everything appeared to be in proper order. He then asked me if I knew where my 14
  31. 31. children were, so I pulled out the little crumpled piece of paper that my daughter had given to me, and handed it to him. (I already had written down the address in my note pad, which I was carrying with me.) He told me that he would be preparing some documents for me to sign over the weekend, and that he would like to see me to return to his office, the following Monday, at 10:00 AM sharp. I told him that I would certainly be there. He then told me, not go by the place where my sons were staying, because that could complicate the problem, and I promised not to do so, then, I left, and returned to my hotel. That weekend, was probably the longest in my entire lifetime. It just seemed to crawl along. On Sunday morning, I just couldn’t sleep longer, so I got up, cleaned up, and went downstairs to have some more of that nice, old fashioned, Ranch Style breakfast, with plenty of everything imaginable, and plenty of coffee to wash it all down with. And, Boy, can I tell you that I was just about fed up with that nice, old fashioned, Ranch Style breakfast, with plenty of everything imaginable, and plenty of coffee to wash it all down with. They changed absolutely nothing on their Breakfast Buffet, while I was there. However, do not take that wrong, either, it was a very nice hotel, and, I am very sorry, but I just cannot remember the name of it at present. Needless to say, but I just couldn’t wait to see my two sons again, so, I headed over to the address that I had, which was a very long walk, but I had nothing else to do, anyway. I stood behind some small trees, out of sight, about a half block from where they were supposedly staying, once I had located the address, which wasn’t really difficult, once I got a city map, which was the hard part of that ordeal. I waited there, in amongst the small trees, for what seemed like days, but was only hours, in reality. Then, all of a sudden, my youngest son came out of the front door, and appeared in the front yard, followed closely behind, by my eldest son. Shortly after, one of those big crew cab trucks pulled up, they both hopped in, and they all headed off in the opposite direction, from where I was. Well, at least I knew that they were still here. So, I headed back to my hotel, once again. In addition, yes, Mexican Buffet was the order of the day, every day, for the Dinner Buffet. Nothing ever changed in that nice hotel, maybe, even to this very day. I do not know, because I have never gone back there, since I left. 15
  32. 32. On Monday morning, the same old routine again, then back to the attorney’s office, and sure enough, the same old routine again, until the attorney entered with a fist full of papers that I needed to sign, which I did, as he showed me where to sign all of them in triplicate. He then showed me a piece of paper, which said “Writ of Habeas Corpus” on the top of the page, and he said this will be served on your ex-wife, either today, or tomorrow, at the latest, and, then they will have to appear in court on Friday, to show just cause, or you win. I asked him, what time that we had to be in court? His answer was that he did not want me to be there, in case that there was any trouble. He told me that the Judge would take his word that I was in town, to take possession of my children, if I won, and that is all that mattered. He told me that he would call me as soon as the hearing was over, so stay close to my phone, to hear what the outcome was. This all was a bit confusing at the time, but I took his word on it, because he came highly recommended, by my other attorney, who had won many times for me in the past. Later on, I learned what he meant, the hard way. You will have that part, shortly. Again, I headed back to that nice hotel, but, this time, on the way, I spotted one of those World Famous Fast Food Places, and decided that I would stop in there for something to take back to that nice hotel, to eat later on. A cold Big Mac, or cold KFC, is not as bad as some believe it to be. Nevertheless, for the next three and a half days, it was the same old routine at that nice hotel, which really was not as bad as I may have led some to believe. Sorry about that. It really was not a bad place to say, and the people were very nice. Friday, about noon, the attorney’s secretary called me again, and told me that the attorney wanted to see me in his office at 2:00 PM sharp, that day. Therefore, I asked her what had happened, and she said that she did not know, because the attorney had only told her that he wanted to see me in his office at 2:00 PM sharp, so, she was only relaying his message. 16
  33. 33. Needless to say, I was in his office at 1:20 PM, and, as before, I was taken to his conference room, immediately. However, then, I was asked if I would like to have a cup of coffee, which had never happened before, so I accepted it. I knew that I was going to have some waiting to do. About an hour later, he stepped in to the conference room, looking like he had just had one of those 3+ martini lunches, reached over to me, and said, “We won !!! Your ex-wife has to deliver your sons to you, at the west entry of the airport by noon tomorrow.” Holy Cow, we won, again !!! I thanked him very much, and asked if there was any refund on my deposit, and he just shook his head, no. Well, at least I tried. As I was leaving, he handed me one of the triple certified true copies of my divorce decree, showing that I had permanent custody of my children, and a copy of the “Writ of Habeas Corpus”, which had been stamped by the court, there. He told me that I might need them, to be able to take my sons out of Texas. In addition, he was certainly correct on that one. He also told me that when they arrived, if I needed to call airport security, do not hesitate to do so. Now, I can honestly say, that part did made me a bit nervous. He then told me that if my ex-wife did not deliver the boys to me, at the west gate of the airport, the next day, just give him a call on Monday, and he would take care of that too, because she would be in violation of a Court Order. Now, that was very reassuring. I then headed out to the airport to book our return flights back to Portland, Oregon, for the next day, if there was any available. Sure enough, there was a flight leaving in the early afternoon, but we had to go through Phoenix, Arizona, which was okay with me. I had to change my ticket, with a surcharge of course, to that flight, and pay for my sons tickets at the same time, and sure enough, the Ticket Agent asked me to see something that said that I was legally allowed to remove my sons from Texas, so I showed her the documents that my attorney given to me, she then walked in to the back room, and returned with a 17
  34. 34. copy of them, handing the orig g ginals back to me then s e, she booke the ed tickets not bef s, fore. Our flight wa about 2:30 PM the next day, so we had r as w plenty of time to check in, after my ex-w y k r wife delivered my sons to me, or m so I th hought at the time t e. I then headed back to t n that nice hotel, an yes, I did have some more of nd, e m their M Mexican Buffet Di inner. After all, I was not going t be the to ere the next n night, or s I hoped, anywa so ay. That n night I pa acked all of my thi ings up, so that I was read to chec out, s dy ck and le eave the n next day. And, y yes, the n next morning, I go up, cle ot eaned up, and I did have another , portion of the nice, old fashione Ranch Style b d ed, h breakfast, with ple , enty of everyt thing ima aginable, and plent of coffee to was it all d ty sh down with after h, all, it was inclu uded in th price. Moreover, I was c he checking out of tha nice at hotel, later on, and hopefully for eternity. I was at the w west entra ance of th airport at about 11:00 A he t AM, and waited in the hot Texa sun, f my ex as for x-wife to deliver m sons t me. No one my to N arrived at noon and no one by 1 n 12:30, eit ther. The erefore, I decided that I would wait jus one mo st ore hour, so that I would have tim to go in and , me change our res servations if need be. Wel about a quarter after 1:0 PM, s, ll, r 00 who s should ap ppear, bu my ex ut x-father-in-law, w with my t two sons s? He walked up to m pulle out his back-up service revolver from his ankle d me, ed s p s holste pointed it at my head, a er, d y and told me that h was go m he oing to blow me away (this is not a pictu of his actual se ure ervice rev volver, bu I hope that it ut makes the point). s He was so close tha I at could actually s see the b bullet in th chamb he ber, and t the hammer was fully d s drawn ba ack, ready to fire. I told my sons to go get s someo one, anyo one, from airport s m security, but they j just froze and did not mo e, d ove. I co ould see fe ear on th heir faces s. There efore, I told t him, just go ah head, and blow m away, right her in front of a tho d me re t ousand sses, and your grandsons, then live with th one, i you can. He witnes d e hat if ent, with h pistol still aime at my head, and then stood there for a mome r his ed he slo owly relea ased the hammer and re r, eturned it to his holster. t I just 18
  35. 35. turned, grabbed my sons’ hands and their bags, and walked away, fully expecting to be shot in the back, at any time. However, fortunately, that did not happen. We just walked in to the check in counters, and checked in, and, sure enough, I was asked again, to prove that I was legally allowed to take my sons out of Texas, so I pulled out the documents that my attorney had given to me, and once again, the check-in lady, walked in the back room, returned with a copy of the documents, and returned the originals to me. After we had boarded the plane, and started heading back to Portland, Oregon, via Phoenix, Arizona, the boys told me that they had saw me, the Sunday before, when they were starting to get in to their mother’s boyfriend’s truck, because I stepped out from behind the small trees, to see if it was really them, they saw me then. However, they did not say a word, because their mother’s boyfriend carried a fully loaded revolver in his truck too. So, now, I knew, first hand, what my attorney there, had meant. Some say, “Ignorance is Bliss”, and I will tell you for a fact that this is not true; you can take my word on that one. When you have a gun pointed at your head, with a complete lunatic behind it, Ignorance is not Bliss. That is very scary situation to ever be in. However, I could not let my sons know that, or they probably would have been traumatized over that situation for the rest of their lives. Therefore, when they brought the subject up later on, I just laughed and told them that I knew that their grandpa was just kidding. However, I will tell you, right here and now that was the scariest situation that I have ever been in, in my entire life, so far. Anyway, the boys were safe, and back home with me, and their sister. I had parked in the long-term parking at the Portland airport, so when we arrived, later that night, it was easy for us to get our things to the car, and head over to our little apartment. Their first night back home with me, was a real joy for all of us. We got up early the next morning, when over to pick up my daughter, their sister, and then we went out for breakfast. I did not miss the Ranch Style breakfast, either. The couple that my daughter had stayed with was completely elated, when they saw that the boys were with me. 19
  36. 36. I had stayed in consta ant conta act with my daug ghter dur ring this entire ordeal I called her eve eveni l. ery ing, to let her kno what w t ow was happ pening, and to let her k o know just how much I appr t reciated h her. We then drove over to t the Orego Coast, so that I could show the boys a on , small part of O Oregon. T They enjo oyed it ve much Then t ery h. they aske me, ed where they wo e ould be going to s school? So, on th way ba S he ack, I dro ove by their s school, w which was were m daught s my ter was a already g going to school, s and th hey like t that very much, because all of them would b going to the m be The boys even like our new slightly use, Pint wagon. same school. T e w, to Later that day, we drov over to my bos , ve o ss’s home to let h e, him know that I eturned h had re home with my son and to introduce them to him and his ns, o a family y. I then asked h n him if I c could take a few hours off the nex day, f xt Monda to get my sons registere in school, and, he said, sure, why not. ay, t s ed y Two more down, and safe a home, T e at However, there wa much m H as more to go, As A I would come to discover later on d o r, n. The n next morn ning, I to ook every which wa not far from yone to school, w as where we lived and got the boy enrolle in scho e d, ys ed ool, also. I then headed h off to work. afternoon, when w finished up our work for the day, my boss asked That a we d me if he could speak to me for a few minutes, a o m alone. Pa anic struc me, ck because I had just retu urned to w work, so the first thing tha popped in to at d my mind was that he w was going to lay me off. I followed him in to the g m d office, where h asked me to pull up a ch , he hair, and then offe ered me a coke, which I gladly accepted He the explai d. en ined to m that he was go me oing to open up a new division of the co w ompany, in anothe part of the stat and er f te, he said that he would li e ike me to manage it for him, if I wo o e ould acce the ept job. I would pay more money. Nevertheless, I told him that I st had It e . till not ta aken my Oregon E Electrical Supervis sor’s Lice ense Exam yet, so I did m o not qu ualify for the position. He s simply said, “Get c cracking o it, bec on cause I 20
  37. 37. want to open up the other office in just a few more weeks”. I thanked him for this opportunity, and told him that I would start working on it, right away. The next day, I called the Oregon State Electrical Licensing Bureau in Salem, to see if they had some study materials available that I could go over to study for the Electrical Supervisor’s Exam, and I was told no, you just have to come down and take it here, when you have 5 years experience as a Journeyman. I told him that I had all of my paid up receipts for more than 5 years, and he said that would qualify, so come on down, and take the exam, any time that you are ready to do so. However, he did slip me a hint, at the end of the conversation; he said that the test was based upon the present Electrical Code Book, so study the footnotes well. I crammed every night and on the weekends too, for a couple of weeks, then I thought that I might well be ready to take the exam. I had paid special attention to all of the footnotes in the entire Code Book. Therefore, I scheduled an appointment to go down a take the exam, the following week. In addition, sure enough, it was only on the footnotes. I passed with excellence, and my new Oregon State Electrical Supervisor’s License was sent to me by mail, a few days later. When I received, the next day, I took it in to my boss to show it to him. He patted me on the back, told me that I had my raise, up to Supervisor’s pay, effective that same day, and then he told me that his son had taken that exam more than a dozen times, and still had not passed it. I told him that it was just a stroke of luck, because his son was an excellent craftsman. He said that it really did not matter now, because he now had a Supervisor for his other office, and that is all that really mattered to him. Well, that was another $160 bucks per week, on my paycheck, which I greatly appreciated. The kids and I quickly set up a routine for home. Because they went to school at the same time that I went to work, but got home earlier, as I now had a further distance to travel, each way, I would leave money on the kitchen counter at home in the morning, and they would go shopping, when they got home from school, for what they wanted to eat that night. Then, they would start in on their homework. I would make it, when I got 21
  38. 38. home from wo ork, and they wer finishing their homewor for the day. re rk Then they wou clean and stack the dishes in the dishw uld washer, while I w took m showe and th my er, hen we wo ould settle in for a good eve ening tog gether. We al lways we ent somewhere ne ew, toget ther, eve ery weekend, doin our ng own little, disc cover Ore egon bit. Someti imes we would ev ven go fishing, f which, even m daughter liked to do, because y my b you could really catch a d few fis sh, in Or regon, without try ying very hard to catch them, at le east at that ti ime. I do not kno how it is now. We were having a grand time of o ow e t it, and enjoying every m d g moment to ogether. I even went down and took my Oregon State Drivers Lic n y cense tes and st, passed it. I wa now, o d as officially, a Oregonian. an A few weeks la ater, I hir red an att torney in Portland, to trans , sfer my custody docum ments in t the Sta of Or to ate regon, and file for a perma anent inju unction agains my ex- st -wife, for violating her term and conditions o her vis ms of sitation rights. I was a qualified resident of the State by that time. Three months d t S m later, that was all comp s plete, all nice, and legal. I did not have to worry d t about going ba ack to Texas any more, to fight for my child r dren, and get a d gun sh howed in my face, ever aga ain. Ano other Two down, o Yet still mo to com t, ore me. Things were re s eally start ting to look pretty good for us, at t y this point in my life, but, still, t settled issue, of m presen wife, whom I there was that uns s my nt w had no heard from in m ot many months. Actually, no a word since sh had ot d, he driven away, on our sec n cond day in Oregon n. 22
  39. 39. One of m basic philosop O my phies in life is to never awaken s a sleeping dogs, and definite never, ever, d d ely , even atte e empt to, kick one, just leave them alone, , and every a ything will work o just fine. No chance out c of o being b bitten, that way. I was def finitely go oing to stick with that one with this situatio s h e, on. A mon nth, or so, later, my boss again summoned me to the office, and s d again on Mond day, right after wo t ork. (I th hink, by this, that he must have t done his seriou thinkin over t us ng the week kends.) He H asked me to have a d h seat, once aga ain, and offered me another coke which I again, gladly e, accept ted. This time he told me that he wanted to expand his oper s e d rations in to the City of Portla and, but that he needed me to ta ake the City of C Portland’s Electrical Sup pervisors Exam. Not know wing what that en ntailed, and being over confiden from m last quest, I said “Yes, of cours r nt my q se. I’ll get rig on it.” I asked him if he knew anything a ght ” d about tha exam, and he at a told m no, he had only heard t me e that it wa a very tough o as y one, but he had h full co onfidence in me, of being ab to pas it, whatever it w f ble ss was. The n next day, after wo ork, I dro ove down to our Electrica Union Hall in n al Portland, to pick up my dues re y eceipts, which I had not done for awhile. w a (Our d dues wer automatically d re deducted, and pai for, fro , id om our wages, w once e each mon nth.) While I was th here, I a asked if a anyone knew anything abo k out the City of C Portland’s Electrical Sup pervisors test. An old jour n rneyman walked over to o me th told m that h had be hat me he een trying to pass that exa for ov 10 g s am ver years, so he finally gav up. He said tha it was one heck of a tes and , ve e at k st, wished me a w d whole lot o luck, if I was going to try to pass it. of y Our U Union Sec cretary to me th old hat he di not kn id now of an nyone tha had at passed in the last fiv years, since the City of Portla d e ve , t and’s Ele ectrical Inspec ction Dep partment’ Boss, s ’s stopped teaching i it. He sa that I would aid have t find so to omeone w who took s some of those clas t sses, to check with them h to see if they h e had any n notes tha may be useful t me. H at e to However, he did not h have any names of who attende y o ed, beca ause the classes were 23
  40. 40. conducted at the Oregon State University Campus. It was too late to go there now. The next day, right after work, I drove down to the Registrations Office of Oregon State University and asked the woman at the counter, if they had any records of who attended the last Electrical Supervisors Course, 5 years ago. She said no, and even if we had that information, it is not public information, so, we cannot give that kind of information to you, anyway. Well, nice try, but I drew a blank on that one. The only thing left for me to do, was for me to sit the exam to see what was on it, and pass it, if that was possible to do, the first time around, which I had some very serious doubts about doing, just because of what I had been told about it. However, what the heck, how bad could it be, I already knew the footnotes in the Code Book. Therefore, the next morning, I called down to the City of Portland’s Electrical Inspection Department to schedule a crack at their exam. I was told that it was held each first Tuesday of every month, so come on down, no appointment was necessary, but do not be late, the exam starts at 8:00 AM, and I would have until noon to complete it. Now, I knew that I was definitely in trouble, when they were giving us 4 hours to complete an exam. By this time in my life, I had passed a lot of exam, but none, were we ever given 4 hours to complete, not even our College Entrance SAT exam. It did not last that long, as I remembered, but that was a long time ago, also. I had two more weeks to wait, until I could sit the exam, so I decided that maybe, just maybe, I should do a bit more cramming for this one, because it appeared that it was going to be a real dilly to pass. Those two weeks went by quickly, and before I knew it, it was time to take a half day off from work, with pay, to sit the City of Portland’s Electrical Supervisors Exam. I got to their office at 7:30, but the offices did not open until 8:00, so the sign said. Therefore, I went down the street to get a cup of coffee, and then I returned. Sure enough, they opened at 8:00, the secretary asked my business, and I told her that I was there to sit the Electrical Supervisors Exam. She asked for proof of 5 years experience as a journeyman electrician, so I just showed her my State of Oregon’s Electrical Supervisors License, which also I had to prove 24
  41. 41. 5 years experience to be able to take. In addition, she accepted that, as my proof, and took me in to their exam room. I was handed a one page exam sheet, with only 10 questions on it, and 10 other, clean, sheets of paper to do my calculations on, being told not to do them in my head, because the written calculations were part of my test score, then, she walked out, and closed the door behind her. I looked down at the test paper, and these were electrical engineering questions, which no journeyman would ever have to remember, because that was not part of our work. However, there they were. Therefore, I started right in on them. I then knew why we had 4 hours to complete the exam. Fortunately, I did have some experience in this field, because I had worked for Bechtel Corporation, a well known, privately held, Electrical Engineering Company, many years before, twice, in fact. However, I was having real difficulty with trying to remember the electrical calculations, from that far back. A few minutes later, the secretary entered again, with another man, about my same age. She handed him the same things that she handed to me, then she told him, you know the routine, and I hope that you pass it this time, because this is your last chance for another year. I said, I beg your pardon, but what is this about a last chance for another year? She said that each applicant only was given three chances to pass the exam, each year. Therefore, if you do not make it, during those three chances, you get to wait for one more year, to be able to sit the exam again. Then she told us that talking was not allowed in the exam room, turned and walked out the door again, closing it behind her. We put our heads down, and started working on the exam. Before we knew it, the secretary walked in again, said “times up”, hand in your work, and come back here at 2:00 PM to get your results. Therefore, I had to call my boss, to tell him that I would not be in that day, because we would not get the results of the exam until 2:00 PM. He asked me, how was it, and I told him that it was an engineering exam, which is why no has passed it, since it was no longer being taught. He then asked me, how I thought that I did, and I told him that it was a tossup, because there was a lot of the formulas that I just could not remember. He wished me luck, said I will see you tomorrow, and hung up. 25
  42. 42. I went out to grab some lunch, had a walk in the riverside park, and then headed back over to the City of Portland’s Electrical Inspection Department to what my results were. The other fellow was already there, when I arrived. The secretary took us in to the exam room, once again, and asked us to have a seat; she said that the Chief Electrical Inspector would be in shortly, with our results. He walked in a few minutes later, an elderly man, and handed each of us our test scores. I got a 66%, which he said was not bad for a first try. The other fellow got a 57%, he patted him on the shoulder and said, see you next year, young man. Well, it was all over, except for the crying, because you had to get at least a 70% to pass. As we were walking out the door, the other fellow asked me if he could buy me a cup of coffee, because he wanted to know, how I tested so high, on my first attempt. I said sure, I do not have to be back to work today, anyway, so why not. When we got to the coffee shop, we each ordered a large cup of coffee, and picked out a roll, each, then we sat down. I explained to him that I had studied Electrical Engineering in the past, and had worked for Bechtel Corporation, many years ago, but that I just couldn’t remember all of the formulas that we on the exam. He then told me that he had taken the last class that the Chief Electrical Inspector had given, 5 years ago, and that he had a copy of the 10 calculations that they were given, and had to go over every one, for a complete semester, at Oregon State University. He said that he would give me a copy of them, if I wanted them. I said that I did want the copy of them, and we made an appointment to meet the following Saturday, in the same spot, at 12:00 noon, for me to pick up my copy of the formulas that he had been given in class. Hot Dog, maybe I had a chance at passing this one, after all. The next morning, I told my boss that I had gotten a 66%, and it took 70% to pass, so I was not that far from getting it done. I told him that I wanted to sit the exam, again next month, and he agreed. Nevertheless, I did not tell him about the other fellow, who had the 10 formulas that he was going to give me a copy of. That would remain my little secret. 26
  43. 43. The following Saturday, we met, and he handed me a letter sized page of paper with 10 formulas written nicely on it. I looked at them, and sure enough, they were the ones on the exam. I asked him if I could have a copy of these, and he said that is your copy. I could have danced in the streets with joy over that one. However, I invited him for lunch, my treat, and while I we were having lunch; I asked him why he had just not memorized these formulas, because these were the exam, except the formulas were put in to question form. He told me that was the part that was so difficult for him to do, because the formulas just got jumbled up in his head. So, I told him that he needed to clear his head, concentrate on just these for a few minutes each day, until they are embedded in your brain, then, take the exam again next year, and you will surely pass it. I told him not to concentrate on them for too long a time, each time that he studied them, because that would only be counterproductive to being able to retain them in long term memory. I told him that he needed to go over each one, and say the equation out load, as he was trying to remember it, and he had to do this at least 21 times, for each equation, for them to click over in to long term memory. I told him that was something that I had read, many years ago, also, but it worked for me. So, try it. He said that he would, and thanked me for lunch. As we parted, I almost kissed him, Thanks, because I now had the keys in my hands to be able to pass that exam. (He never gave me a number to contact him with, and I never saw, or heard from him, ever again. I often wonder if he did pass the exam the next year. However, I guess, that is one of life’s mysteries that I will never come to know.) The next Monday, I called the City of Portland’s Electrical Inspection Department and told them that I would be back in again, next month, to take another shot at their exam, because I had come so close to passing it, the last time. Moreover, the secretary said, “Sure, come on down, we will be ready for you.” (There was more to that statement than met the ear, as you will see, in just a bit.) When I got home from work that evening, and we had our dinner, I told the kids that I had a very important test to study for, and I had less than a month to do it in, so, I can only spend a little bit of time with you people on the weekend, until I have taken this exam. They just said, go ahead, and study, we will have fun without you, until you are finished, 27

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