Mr. Hogue's Wisdom Continued...
Mr. Hogue's Wisdom continued.....
THE POET IN ME
by Dale Hogue
It's very hard to write a poem
and say the things I must
when in my head cobwebs form
and my brain cells turn to dust.
A sharpened pencil doesn't help
not one single little bit,
if the computer in my mind
can't make the darn words fit.
I could write a great deal more
I'm sure you will concede
that if my mind was truly bright
I'd know where these words lead.
I'll just finish with this poem
and let the rascal go,
for it's very hard to write about
things that I don't know
NOBODY IS PERFECT
by Dale Hogue
Nobody's perfect in this world of ours,
Even sweet milk gets old and sours.
If left alone it becomes curds and whey;
Nobody knows why it works that way,
But it does, so don't wrinkle your nose
When a flower dies and its petals close.
It's just doing its thing and that is why
Nobody should sniffle, snuffle and cry
When things grow old, wither and die.
For nothing's perfect in this life we choose
Some days we win, other days we lose.
Perfection? Not for you, not even for me!
Try opening your eyes and you will see
In life, nothing is perfect, we mortals find
That seeking perfection is a state of mind.
A POET'S CHOICE OF WORDS
by Dale Hogue
I suppose that when some of us are reading a poem,
We sincerely believe that the most important thing
Is the rhyming scheme which drives a Poet's machine.
Well, for this Poet, it just isn't true, the driving force
Are pictures in my mind that I paint in a rhythmic way
With words I carefully choose from my palette that day.
I paint bright reds to postulate power that provokes
And inflames a mind and soul with angry inflection.
I paint with blues, whether written on paper and sung
Or played on a trumpet to calm us with quiet reflection.
Lavender, pink and purple are plucked from my palette
While painting the picture that accompanies a pendulum
Of moods that lovers feel from euphoria to depression.
This Poet carefully uses colors to picture what lovers feel
When near to each other, words which are stimulating
that awakens the basic instincts kept under repression.
I read somewhere that words will soothe a savage beast;
Or was it breast? Nevertheless, many thoughts of a kind
Are written in poetry, not for rhyming words, but for ideas
And what they do for your memory and for your mind.
Judging a President's character
by his speech making ability.
by Dale Hogue
Perhaps the President's critics should judge George W.
Bush by the content of his character rather than any
short comings they ascribe to his ability to make a speech.
But don't look for that to happen any time soon, for those
people who dislike George W. Bush so much that they will
never ever allow themselves to be objective toward what he
is saying in the speech and how he is saying it.
They have certainly had many opportunities to observe his
improved speech making ability since he became President.
However most of them refuse to let some of the usual slips
or flubs that most all candidates make during the heat of a
campaign for office be forgotten.
If they come back with the argument that he is reading
someone else's words, then they have missed the whole
point. Lincoln read only the words that he had written,
but he wasn't considered an eloquent speaker when he
was alive because of quality of his voice. You might have
noticed that in all Hollywood pictures about Lincoln the
actor playing him is an eloquent speaker who speaks in a
much deeper voice than did the real Abraham Lincoln.
George W. Bush doesn't have a deep voice. It is somewhat
like a reed instrument in tone; not very deep or full and he
has a slight nasal twang and speaks with a west Texas accent.
However lacking the qualities of his voice, these qualities have
not shaped or changed the content of what he is saying or have
they determined the quality of his improvement in his speech
making ability. On top of that, during a prepared speech, he
has no more flubs than anybody else that I have ever heard
reading a speech, and I'm including guys like Dan Rather,
Tom Brokow, and Peter Jennings, who are paid millions to
read nothing more difficult than the evening news.
Go back and listen to the speeches of John F. Kennedy.
He never wrote his speeches nor the books that he has
been credited with writing. His New England accent
and reedy voice made it difficult to understand him at
times, but it didn't take away from the fact that he did
a good job reading the material. His admirers still
consider him as the best President to ever give a speech.
I was in my early thirties with ten years teaching
experience when Kennedy became prominent politically.
Because I have made many speeches in my lifetime
--most of them in classrooms--I paid very close
attention to how politicians got their messages
across in their speeches. Richard Nixon was a very
powerful speaker by comparison to John F. Kennedy,
but there is no way that you could get a member of
the media to agree to the analysis that I just gave you.
Why? The answer is obvious, the media people liked
Kennedy and they didn't like Nixon, therefore Kennedy
had to be the better speaker in their minds.
Which brings me back to the critics who analyze
George W. Bush's speaking ability. If they liked him
as a person or as a politician, they would see him as
I see him. I see him as an honest man who is on a
mission that he feels very strongly about. The speeches
that he makes are never about him, they are about the
Like most good speakers, he has a number of well
rehearsed and well received phrases that he uses again
and again. "We will search out the evil doers and we
will bring them to justice." or words to that effect.
The use of these phrases is not--as his critics indicate
--for lack of an intelligent imagination, but for the
reason I have already stated.
One of our presidents spoke in a somewhat high pitched
nasal tone which made it hard to listen to him for very long,
so if you researched his speeches you will find that most
of them were relatively short by standards of that day.
He told cracker barrel type stories and might have made
a better standup comedian than president. Yet, he wrote
one the most famous speeches in American history and
when he read it at the dedication of the military cemetery
at Gettysburg it hardly made a ripple with the newspaper
reporters who covered the ceremony.
The reporters wrote more about the speeches of the other
politicians whose names hardly anybody remembers today.
The papers the next day gave one or two lines in their papers
to Abraham Lincoln's speech at Gettysburg. "The President
also spoke briefly at the ceremony." one of the reporters wrote.
Nothing was said in the article about the content of Lincoln's
speech. Yet, those great words and phrases thrill those who
read them today nearly 139 years after he first uttered them
Let me set the stage for you:
THE BATTLE OF GETTYSBURG: Lee crossed the Potomac
on June 15, 1863, leading an army of 70,000 men. The Union
army under sound, steady George Gordon Meade followed the
Units of the two armies stumbled into each other at the sleepy
little town of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. Both armies then
hastened to the spot. Here 165,000 men were to fight the
greatest single battle ever to take place in the Western
Hemisphere. Nearly twice as many Americans were to die at
Gettysburg as were lost in the entire American Revolution.
Lee had the advantage on the first day, before Meade had
securely established his forces on high ground. Southern
hesitation enabled the North to hold key points--Culp's Hill
and Little Round Top--the loss of which might have led to a
Northern defeat. If the bold "Stonewall" Jackson had been
there, the result might have been quite different.
The South needed a victory, not another inconclusive battle.
So on the third day, Lee made a desperate bid. He sent 15,000
infantry, including General George Pickett and his brave
Virginians, against the middle of the Union line. But the
artillery and the fire of Northerners protected by defensive
works was too much. A hundred men reached the Union line,
but they were all captured or killed. The Battle of Gettysburg
Lincoln's speech was delivered November 19, 1863 at the
dedication of the cemetery at Gettysburg.
When I went to elementary school and high school during
the 1930s and 1940s, all students were required to memorize
the Gettysburg Address. I write the following from memory
--so please bear with me, for I may miss a few of the words
or phrases after more than 50 some years, but from those
that I do remember you are able to fully understand what an
eloquent speaker Abraham Lincoln, our 16th president,
really was--even with his reedy voice and his midwestern
LINCOLN'S GETTYSBURG ADDRESS
Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth
on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and
dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
Now were are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether
that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can
long endure. We are met on a great battlefield of that war.
We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final
resting place for those who here gave their lives that that
nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we
should do this.
But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate - we can not
consecrate - we can not hallow - this ground. The brave men,
living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far
above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little
note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never
forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be
dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought
here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to
be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us - that
from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that
cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -
that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have
died in vain - that this nation, under God, shall have a new
birth of fredom - and that government of the people, by the
people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
ABRAHAM LINCOLN November 19, 1863
As was so often the case during Lincoln's time, too many
members of the today's media are sometimes so shallow in
their thinking that they don't appreciate the value of straight
talk if it isn't sugar coated in an eloquent style of speaking.
Our nation has had many great men and women in its history,
but their greatness is not measured by how well they spoke
but by what they did with their time on the American stage.
GETTING OLDER AIN'T NO PICNIC
by Dale Hogue
The time has come when I've just got to say,
I can't keep on playing this game that I play,
For my knees are all shot and I must confess
That my feet are real sore and a terrible mess.
My face is as worn as a well-turned page
And is showing the wrinkles of a man my age.
My old belly has grown to be bigger in size
Than the one that I had when I won first prize.
My feet slap the floor when I'm taking a walk,
And I move real slowly like the hands of a clock.
After I've done what I've needed to clear out my head
I turn this old body and go right back to bed.
I hear the young children on the lawns of the park,
Shouting and laughing from morning 'till dark.
My young days were fun and now that they're gone,
I miss my dear friends playing on that same lawn.
Getting old ain't a picnic and the going is rough,
But I'll stick to my guns to show that I'm tough.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME, AGAIN
by Dale Hogue
On February 17th, I will turn 73 years old. I am letting
you know about this just in case you need something to
purposely ignore on that date.
I remember when my oldest brother turned 30 years
old. I was 18 and I thought that he was really over
the hill. Now that I am about ready to turn over the
two magic numbers 7 and 3, I don't for a minute think
that I am over the hill. It's interesting how seeing
something from a different prospective changes a person's
mind about age.
Over the years, I've written about my various adventures in
which I was involved when I was a teenager and younger.
A few of you have written to me about your life and I really
do appreciate getting to know about you and your adventures
during your lifetime. It's almost like hanging out with the
gang at our favorite drinking spot and shooting the bull.
Quite often I look through the senior year of my high school
yearbook and marvel at how young and beautiful we all were.
Every morning I face the mirror to shave and wonder where
that young guy went. I'm still here, I tell myself, the exterior
has grown older, but the interior is still 18 years old.
I buy that line every morning until I try to do some of the
things I did when I was younger. I know that the line I feed
myself each morning is a bit of stretch. At the very least, it is
an exaggeration of how important we feel about our youth.
It was great being young and doing youthful things, but
time marches on. Or was it, time marches to a different
drummer? Whatever the case, I am young at heart and
young in spirit. The problem is that my body isn't playing
the same tune that I am.
These are the best years of my life. I say that with a straight
face. I have spent more than 52 years being around the
woman I was lucky to meet when I was in college. The fact
that she didn't throw me out on my ear years ago, indicates
that she has staying power as well as class.
Our three kids have grown up and left the nest. They are
busy building a life of their own and raising their own
families. The raising of these three wonderful children
has been the greatest accomplishment of my life. My wife,
Ale, and I are proud of what we accomplished in that category.
I'm retired, now, and doing what I love to do. You see, I
spent most of my life being responsible for something or
being responsible to somebody about something. Now,
at last, I'm not responsible for anything nor responsible to
anybody about anything. It doesn't get much better than this.
Yes, I know, I'm still responsible for my actions and
my reactions to those things related to relationships
in which I am involved--such as my marriage and being
a grandparent to my grandchildren, but that's about the
extent of my responsibilities. Except for being a good
neighbor and keeping our house and property looking
nice and clean--got to keep the property values up. You
never know when I might decide to sell the old place.
But that's about all, except for paying my bills promptly
and paying my taxes on time. It helps that I keep my
body clean and my face shaven and that I always get
a nice hair cut from time to time. People like to be around
other people when they smell good and look good. But that's
just about it. Oh, I forgot one other thing. I know that I can't
play my television set too loudly or it will disturb my neighbors.
But that's all I can think of now--I do believe I've covered
everything. Ain't it great to be retired?
From: Dale Hogue
This is a story based on something that actually happened in my life. My younger sisters taught our dog, born without front legs, to walk on her hind legs. A reporter from the Arizona Republic newspaper heard about it and visited us to see for herself if
the dog could do what she heard. She talked to my two younger sisters, Thelma, age nine and Emma, age eleven, about the dog.
The story never appeared in the paper. I do not know why. In order to make up for this oversight, I have written this story based on that event. Remember, this story is now a fantasy where I have filled in some fictional facts from my imagination.
Miss Thelma and Wiggles
by Dale Hogue
MissThelma was nine going on forty and she stood barely four feet tall in her new red shoes. Wearing a freshly ironed print dress fitted snugly at her waist with a pleated skirt that reached just below her knees, she hummed a song as she dusted the small piano and piano bench. After completing this task, she stood and admired her morning's work. Every piece of furniture sparkled without a speck of dust.
"There, now I think we will be ready to receive our guest. Wiggles, are you ready to talk to the press?" She picked up the small dog and gave her a hug. At that moment the doorbell rang. Thelma placed Wiggles on the couch and walked to the front door and opened it. "Good morning, are you Miss Readabout?" The tiny lady with the tall hair nodded. "Please come in out of the weather," said Miss Thelma.
Miss Readabout followed Thelma into the living room. She looked at all the little furniture and nodded her head in approval of Miss Thelma's good taste.
"Please sit down at the table. It will be a good place for you to
"Thank you," said Miss Readabout. She set her notebook down on the table and took out one of the many pencils that were stuck in her hair. She looked at it closely to see if it was sharp enough to provide the good writing point that her reporting job for the Herald Post Bulletin newspaper required. Satisfied that it would do, she sat down facing Miss Thelma.
"Miss Thelma, I understand that you have a very interesting story about a dog that you would like to tell me."
"Yes, I do. This is no ordinary dog. It walks on its hind legs."
"Miss Thelma, many dogs walk on their hind legs. That's not news. I have many things to report about that will be more interesting to our readers of the Herald Post Bulletin." She stuck the pencil back in her hair, closed her notebook and got up from the table.
"Please, Miss Readabout, just listen to my story before you decide that this story is not interesting enough for your readers. Sit down and I will tell it from the beginning."
Miss Readabout heaved a sigh, sat down and crossed her arms in front of her. "Okay, I'm listening, this better be good, because when I determine that it isn't very interesting I will leave."
"Fair enough," said Miss Thelma.
Miss Thelma began the story. "When I was just a little girl, much
smaller than I am now, there was a really old female dog that used to visit at my house every afternoon. She was very friendly, right from the beginning. She was well fed and well groomed, so I thought that she belonged to somebody in the neighborhood. She never missed an afternoon visit for more than a year. Then she stopped coming. I thought that perhaps her owners had moved or maybe she was sick or had died.
Miss Readabout started to get up from the table. Miss Thelma put up her hand and pointed with one finger for her to sit. Miss Readabout sat.
"Three months went by," continued Miss Thelma. "Then one day she returned carrying a package in her mouth. She put the package at my feet, looked up at me and barked a long series of barks. Then she turned around and started to leave, then almost like an afterthought she barked some more. She seemed to be satisfied that she had covered everything that she wanted to cover, so she turned and walked out the gate and down the street."
Miss Readabout asked, in spite of herself, "Where had she been? Did she ever come back again? What was in the package?"
"Oh, you find this interesting, do you? Well, I don't know where she had been, but she never has come back to this day. Would you care for some tea?"
"No, I don't want any tea. What was in the package?"
"Well, I would like to have some tea and cookies. You are welcome to join me in the tea room." She got up from her seat, motioned for Miss Readabout to follow her and walked out of the room.
She followed Miss Thelma into the tea room. It was a much larger room, beautifully furnished. "This is some of the finest furniture I have ever seen in my life," commented Miss Readabout."
On the counter along the walls were ten complete silver tea sets made of the finest silver that Miss Readabout admitted that she had ever looked at.
Miss Thelma told her that the tea cups and saucers were of the finest china that could be found in the world and that all of the tea cups were filled with the finest tea ever brewed. The tea was hot and steamy and there were homemade cookies on each tea plate.
Miss Readabout looked around at all the tea settings and then asked Miss Thelma, "Are you expecting anybody else?"
"No, just you and me and Wiggles. Please sit where you will be
comfortable and join me in a cup of tea and some cookies."
Miss Readabout sat down in a very comfortable chair and waited for Miss Thelma to seat herself opposite her. Miss Thelma continued her story as Miss Readabout sipped her tea and took a small bite out of a cookie.
"I opened the package to find a very small baby puppy. She appeared to be no more than two weeks old."
"You must have been very surprised?"
"No, I wasn't surprised at all, for the puppy was what the old dog had told me was in the package."
"I beg your pardon. Do you want me to sit here and believe that you understood what the dog was barking about? How gullible do you think I am?"
"I don't know how gullible you are, but I do know that I understood what the old dog was telling me."
"What, exactly, did the old dog tell you?"
Before Miss Thelma could answer, Miss Readabout heard many voices in the room quietly talking as if they were enjoying the tea that was set out on the tables. She looked around at the tables, but nobody was there. This was very unsettling to her, but Miss Thelma did not appear to notice the voices or how it effected Miss Readabout's composure. This was, indeed, becoming most interesting to Miss Readabout.
"Excuse me, Miss Thelma, don't you hear the voices in this room?"
"Yes, I hear them."
"You can hear them. Can you see them? What is going on and what does this have to do with the old dog?"
"No, I can't see them, but It doesn't have anything to do with the old
dog, at least, not anymore it doesn't. lt has a great deal to do with
the puppy she left in my care."
"How so?" asked Miss Readabout as she leaned forward in her seat. She took a pencil from her hair and opened her notebook. The hand that held the pencil was poised to write down everything that Miss Thelma might say.
"I'll show you. Wiggles come in here!" She barely whispered her
command to the dog. "Look for yourself," she suggested to Miss Readabout.
In the time it took for Miss Readabout to turn in the direction Miss
Thelma was looking, Wiggles appeared in the doorway. She was standing upright on her hindlegs. She looked around the room as if she was listening to the voices, then walked over to the table where the two ladies sat. There was a slight wiggle to her rear as she walked. She stopped and stood beside Miss Thelma and nodded her head slightly in the direction of Miss Readabout.
"Wiggles, I would like you to meet Miss Readabout, she is the reporter for the newspaper I was telling you about."
Wiggles smiled at the lady and bowed slightly in her direction.
"My goodness, I have never seen any dog ever smile like that and bow like that and walk like that! Oh, excuse me, Wiggles. How do you do? I'm very glad to meet you." She put her hand out to shake Wiggles' front paw, then withdrew it quickly when she noticed that Wiggles didn't have any front legs. "Oh! my goodness, she doesn't have any front legs!"
"Does she have to have front legs?" She stroked the top of Wiggles'
"No, I guess not, but a dog usually comes equipped with four legs."
"This one didn't."
"I can see that. What happened to her front legs?"
"Nothing happened to her front legs. She didn't have any front legs
when she was born. This is just the way she was equipped, as you say, when her mother left her with me."
Miss Readabout was flustered, embarrassed and speechless. She kept staring at the dog until Wiggles smiled at her again, turned and walked out of the room.
"Is this interesting enough for you, Miss Readabout?"
"Well, there is more to the story if you want me to continue."
"You asked my what the old dog said to me. I swear, I never could
understand what a dog was saying when it was barking before that day. I still can't understand what a dog says when it barks, but that day, I understood every word as well as I can understand what you are saying."
She stopped, took a sip of tea and let this sink in.
"Please, go on! Tell me what she said!"
"The old dog told me that she was leaving her only surviving puppy in my care. I don't know how many puppies she had given birth to, but this was the only one that lived and she wanted me to take care of her. If I took care of her I would receive TALAP in return. I asked her what TALAP was. She said that I would know in time. She started to leave and then she turned, looked at the package and gave me some additional instructions. She told me to prepare tea every afternoon for a number of her friends---no longer in this world---who would visit me every day for the rest of my life. She said I would not be able to see them until I shared my story with someone who believed in what I was doing."
"So that's why you wanted me to hear your story?"
"Tell me, Miss Thelma, have you figured out what talap means?"
"Yes, I have. Talap is an acronym. The T is for the trust l have in
my dog and her trust in me. The A is for acceptance: l will accept her as she is and she accepts me as I am. L is for the unconditional love we have for each other. A is for the appreciation we have for our relationship. P is for the patience we must have with each other when things go wrong.
"This is a very interesting story, Miss Thelma, but do you think that the readers of my newspaper will understand what it all means to them?"
"lt depends on how well you tell the story. Goodbye Miss Readabout, thank you for listening."
POLITICAL PARTY POOPER
The information contained in this essay is
based on factual material and comments
gleaned from statements and writings of the
new Democrat Party leadership and some of
their most avid followers. I can honestly say
that none of the information contained in this
essay is based on the opinions of a bunch of
stinking, rotten, extremist right-wing members
of the hated Republican Party.
The following essay has been written by:
Dale Hogue: a conservative Republican
POLITICAL PARTY POOPER
An old Democrat Party Member writes a letter
to members of what is left of his Old Democrat
Party; let us take a peek over his shoulder to see
what he has written, shall we?
Who are the idiots running this new Democrat
Party? Apparently, they just don't understand
that the old Party bull crap that has worked in
the past will no longer work. Well, I take that
back a bit, for it still will work with those in the
Democrat Party who are ignoramuses in ever
sense of the word.
But, regardless of the number of members of our
Party who will believe anything that our leadership
tells them, I feel that this political bull crap that
they hand out to us will not work with some of the
members who are intelligent and who have minds
of their own and don't depend on the new Democrat
Party leadership for information regarding political
matters related to how the United States government
should function in the early part of the 21st Century.
If I were running the new Democrat Party, I would
sit down with men and women who have the best
minds in the country--not the best political minds--
but the smartest of the really smart people who this
United States of ours produces. We should be able
to come up with some new ideas that are worth
thinking about and discussing with all those who
think for themselves.
We just might be able to develop an honest to
goodness mainstream economic program that
really works and reaches out to all segments of
our population whether they are Democrats,
Republicans or Independents. This business of
having to kiss the collective ass of all the special
interest groups in order to get them to vote for us
just has to stop. These special interest groups
have been running our Democrat Party for the
last fifty or sixty years and it is time for a change.
Having said the above, I would very much like
for you to pay attention to what the new leaders
of our Democrat Party, including Hillary Rodham
Clinton, are saying every day to American people.
They believe that the Democrat Party can still win
elections by using methods that are outdated and
un-American. All we need to do is consider what
is being said by our Democrat Party leadership on
a daily basis.
Hillary Rodham Clinton and the other Party leaders
still think that American voters are so stupid that
the Democrat Party can continue to call anybody
who is not a Democrat Party member an extremist.
Hillary Clinton and the others still believe that we
can win any election by calling all Republican
Party members racists.
Hillary thinks that the new Democrat Party can
win elections by pitting the poor against the rich,
the blacks against the whites, females against
males, homosexuals against heterosexuals, unions
against management, atheists against those who
really believe that their own religion should be the
backbone for our democracy, all kinds of people who
call themselves environmentalist against those who
believe that there is a place for all of God's children
on this earth, socialistic economic ideas against all
the capitalistic economic ideas, and the last, but not
the least of it, the leaders of the Democrat Party's
politically stupid approaches to solving problems
against those approaches suggested by some of the
more politically sophisticated Americans who still
believe in the values presented to us by our Founding
As an old-line Democrat, I really believe that the nasty,
unfair business of the leaders in the Democrat Party
blaming all of America's problems on the Republican
Party will not work any longer, accept, perhaps, with
those members of our society who are too ignorant and
lazy to think for themselves. Democrat leaders should
pray every day that the American voters that we in the
Democrat Party depend on remain stupid and ignorant
when it comes to who should be running this country.
Here is another thing that the Democrat Party leaders
should consider: If our new Democrat Party has become
the Socialist Party, then say so! Why should we continue
this pretense that our Democrat Party is something that
it hasn't been for decades? Whether we have the guts to
believe it or not, there are a great many American voters
who are out there in voter land that honestly want to live
under a socialistic form of government.
So, my fellow members of the new Democrat Party, these
voters are the ones to whom we should be pitching our
socialistic economic ideas and stop this stupid business
of beating up on the opposition in order to muddy the
waters while trying to sell them on our New Democrat
Explain how we believe that things work better in
our society when the entire socialistic government
in Washington--and in all the state capitals--do the
political thinking for those common people who are
too busy with their lives doing whatever the common
people do on a daily basis.
Hillary Rodham Clinton and the other leaders of our
new Democrat Party should explain why we members
of the new Democrat Party think that these common,
everyday individuals are just not smart enough to do
their own thinking about how this country should be
The new Democrat Party leaders should explain to
the common people why most of the money that is
earned in America by its citizens should be sent to
directly to our socialistic government offices so that
those in government who know a great deal more
about how the common people's money should be
spent will have full control of our nation's spending.
We, in the new Democrat Party, already know that
all ungreedy American citizens are happy to turn
over most of their money to our leaders in the new
Democrat Party because they already understand
that these leaders in our Party really do know more
about taking care of them than they do, themselves.
Our Party's leaders, lead by the worlds most brilliant
female, Hillary Rodham Clinton, believe that all the
children in the United States should be taught in the
great government run schools that members of the New
Democrat Party's teacher's union, located in all of
the states of the Union and guided by directives of the
central government's educational leaders who know
just about everything that our children need to know to
become happy, healthy American citizens.
In these government run schools the students will be
taught that our New Democrat Party promises to take
care of them from the cradle to the grave by people who
really understand what all Americans need to do to be
smart like the members of the new Democrat Party.
Our Democrat Party's leaders--along with our friend
Jesse Jackson--believe that children of the common
people should be taught that freedom of speech and
thought should be done only by those members of our
new Democrat Party who really know what should be
thought about and what words should be spoken. In
other words, freedom of speech and thought doesn't
exist outside our New Democrat Party.
The leaders in the new Democrat Party believe that
the common people in America should be taught that
anyone who believes in religious freedom and thought
should be separated from the brilliant thinking done by
the Harvard idealists who belong, naturally, to our new
Democrat Party and who fully understand that there is
no god nor church as powerful as the Party that should
be running our country.
Now is the time to reject any idea that comes from those
extremist who are the only type of people who are members
of the Republican Party. This rule should be easy to follow,
because the leaders in our Party honestly believe that any
idea that comes from nonmembers of our new Democrat
Party is an extremist idea.
Our new Democrat Party leaders honestly believe
that we should teach our young people that they
can only find peace and redemption by following
the strict political thinking that is dictated to them
by the new Democrat Party. They also believe that
the children should be taught in our schools that all
liberal Hollywood actors and actresses know more
about running our government's foreign policy than
do those members of that stinky, rotten Republican
Party who have had many years of experience in the
art of developing foreign policy ideas for our national
Our beloved President Bill Clinton has done a marvelous
job of teaching our young people that oral sex is not really
sex at all and, as a result, can be safely enjoyed by members
of all three sexes without any social recriminations.
And another thing on government run schools. Some of the
leaders in our new Democrat Party--as well as Jesse Jackson
and his minions--believe that our government run schools
should teach our young people that they should disrespect
American history as written by stinking, rotten, dead white
Some of the leaders in our new socialist type Democrat
Party--along with President Martin Sheen--believe that
the young people in our country should be taught to fully
understand that the only function that our military should
have is to help spread our socialistic ideas to other countries
of the world.
A great many of our Party members already firmly believe
that we should teach our young people that the idea of
having white as a skin color in the United States is no
longer in fashion and should be discarded along with
many of the other ideas of white people that we inherited
from extremist European white people who have long since
There are many members of our new Democrat Party who
believe that all white people should be ostracized in order
to teach them that they are not as important to our new
Democrat Party as those people with darker skin and those
who have never gotten around to learning how to speak
English very well. There are some of the leaders in our
Party honestly believe that citizens of the world must be
taught that there is really a "Brave New Socialist World"
coming that will solve everybody's problems.
The following information shows just how stinking rotten
and racist that extremist political party called Republicans
Republican Senator Trent Lott was ousted from power for
praising Strom Thurmond during a birthday roast. And the
new Democrat Party leaders say that this is good thing--you
know, getting rid of a racist senator from that stinking racist
Extremist Republican Party.
Our esteemed new Democrat Party member, Senator Patty
Murray, told a group of high school students in Washington
state that the U.S. should adopt Osama bin Laden's nation
building tactics. She is making these comments to students
all over the state. Now, that's what I call taking a stand on
matters relating to how our own government should be run.
She is not wishy-washy in her praise of bin Laden. I think
that she is in love with that wily old coyote call Osama.
Murray is telling the students that people who live in
Third World countries might have a better view of the
United States if Americans followed Osama bin Laden's
example of being "better neighbors out in other countries
so that they have a different vision of us . . . rather than
just being the people who are going to bomb in Iraq and
go to Afghanistan."
Senator Murray is a leader in the Senate; she was the
chairman of the new Democratic Senatorial Campaign
Committee in the recent 107th Congress. After that racist
Trent Lott's "very bad choice of words," Murray was one
of the first to say. "Like all Americans, I was disturbed
by Senator Lott's comments. They were offensive, hurtful
and wrong. Worst of all, they do not appear to be isolated
And, as you might expect, the dirty, rotten, mean-spirited
racist Republicans, led by Representative George Nethercutt
of Washington, are saying nasty things about solid American
citizen, Patty Murray. Things like: to have a senator suggest
that Osama bin Laden is a good guy and the U.S. hasn't done
anything to help people is "shocking, bizarre and uninformed."
"You have to wonder what country Senator Murray has been
living in since September 11th." Thinking Democrats, like
Senator Joseph Biden (D-DE), on the other hand, were quick
to defend her statements as simply a "very bad choice of words."
Did I say, "thinking Democrat." That is an oxymoron, isn't it?
A very bad choice of words? Osama bin Laden didn't build
roads, schools and day care centers. He ran terrorist camps in
Afghanistan who trained the killers who carried out the 9/11
attacks on America. It's the American people who lead the
world in helping people of impoverished countries, not murders
like bin Laden.
Those dirty, rotten, extremist Republicans continued to attack
Senator Patty Murray by saying that her "offensive, hurtful and
wrong" remarks don't appear to be isolated, either, according
to teachers' reports from across the state of Washington. And
as Chris Vance, chairman of the Washington State Republican
Party, said, "Patty Murray sent the message to these students
that the United States somehow deserved or brought on the 9/11
terrorist attacks . . . It is absolutely outrageous and despicable
to imply that the American government should learn a lesson
from the madman who murdered thousands of American citizens.
If you are interest in reading more about the comments by
Senator Murray go to the following site:
If you would like to send Senator Murray an e-mail directly,
her address is email@example.com
If you'd like to send a fax, the number is 202-224-0238 and
her Senate office number is 202-224-2621.
To take on another matter not remotely related to Patty
Murray, read the following material: Just read what the
leaders of the new Democrat Party just sent out to all it's
IT'S TIME TO FIGHT!
Dear Member of the New Democrat Party
You can help defeat the Republican extremist agenda!
The Republicans have no shame. Just a few weeks have
passed since the November elections, and already the
GOP is gearing up to push an agenda full of attacks on
working families that benefit the big special interests.
Just look at what they've done already!
Ruining the economy on purpose so that everybody
would lose all their money. Unemployment is up to
5%, and so is the federal deficit up, thanks to Bush's
failed economic policies. Bush shot his economic team
dead, but it's too little, too late. He refuses to admit he
is holding the smoking gun. He refuses to come up with
a new socialistic plan to help our economy. He's just
hiring new salesmen to sell the same failed policies!
All of them are, of course, Texas Oil millionaires, except
for those who live in Florida and are called Florida Oil
Rewarding big drug companies at the expense of children.
With President Bush's support, Republicans tacked on a
provision to the homeland security bill that protected drug
companies when the vaccines they make hurt children! The
really good vaccine will be given to those dirty, rotten, Texas
and Florida millionaires only. If you are not among this
richest 1% of Americans, then titty kitty!
Get a "Kick out the Racist Republican Party along with
Whoever Jesse Jackson is mad at today!" bumper sticker
with your donation!
Pushing a fake Medicare prescription drug benefit using real
fake prescriptions written by fake doctors. Republicans--those
dirty rats--promised a comprehensive Medicare prescription drug
benefit, but that would upset the big drug companies, and the
drug cartel in Columbia and Mexico which spent a ton of money
electing Republicans this year in unfair elections.
Instead the GOP has crafted a phony baloney, prescription drug
benefit plan that can only be used to buy real live phony baloneys.
It was watered down to ensure that only a small fraction of senior
citizens, mostly Texas millionaires, are covered. This is the big
payback that the drug companies demanded when they paid every
body in the US to vote for Republicans in the last unfair election.
Privatizing Social Security: Republicans are gearing up their risky
scheme to put Social Security funds into the stock market, gambling
your future for the benefit of Billionaire Wall Street investment firms.
Our Party leaders know more about how to invest your money than
those fools on Wall Street who have spent their whole life learning
how to cheat the common man out of his hard-earned money. If
there is going to be any cheating going on, it should be done by the
government and controlled by our New Democrat Party.
Attacking working families: Bush and the extremist Republicans
refused to extend unemployment benefits to poor people despite
the weak economy.
Because of this shameful inaction, 25,830,203 people will have
no income just three days after Christmas, with 1,195,761 people
losing their only income every day after that. (These numbers
were made up by the leaders of our new Democrat Party--just
like all numbers that new Democrats use to get your attention.)
Meanwhile, Bush restored the policy of awarding bonuses to his
political cronies -- spending your tax dollars to reward political
loyalty to Texas oil millionaires and Florida oil millionaires.
Wrecking our environment: Republicans have declared war on
common sense environmental protections. In fact, Bush is now
allowing power plants to add more toxins to the air, and drilling
for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Reserve is at the top of the
GOP priority list.
Let's let them know that we want to remain dependent on the
Middle East for our oil. Don't let those dirty, stinking oil loving
extremist Republicans get us out of the mess that we've come to
expect from the idiots living in the Middle East. President Martin
Sheen is sure that one of these days those Arabs and Jews will get
sick of killing each other and will become real close friends, that is,
if the dirty, rotten, extremist Republicans will just stay out of their
Down with out-of-date, stinking, rotten, slimey old Republican
Party values! Up yours with some really, honest to goodness
Hollywood values straight from the mouths of a bunch of has-been
actors who need some TV exposure to let the show business people
know that they are still alive and, as usual, whining, crying and
bitching about those dirty, stinking extremist Republican ideas
that will corrupt the pornographic industry and cut off their last
chance for employment since Love Boat went off the air.
We have a choice. Our New Liberal Democrat Party fights
for the rights of the working families, and illegal immigrants,
for children and seniors citizens and the environment. Help us
destroy the dirty, rotten, slimey, extremist Republican Party that
wants to starve our children and push really old, sick and decrepit
people out into the street during snow storms in the dead cold of
winter and take away their social security benefits and give that
money to the millionaire oil men who belong to the Augusta
National Country Club and live in Texas and Florida and are
buddies of George and Jeb Bush.
Stand with the Liberal Socialist Democrat National Committee
today and say NO to the extremist agenda of that dirty, rotten,
extremist and racist Republican Party that believes in extremist
ideas like freedom of speech, and freedom of the press, and those
other silly freedoms like freedom of religion, and the freedom to
own a gun.
Make a contribution to the New Liberal Democrat Party today,
and join our fight for what our Left Wing Party leaders say is
right and what our Socialist Party leaders say is fair and what
President Martin Sheen says is just what we honest to goodness,
liberal people deserve in the real world. We believe that we know
what is best for you.
Hells Bells! We know damn well that we know what is best for you,
so join us now while you can still walk using the same knees that
you were born with.
Paid for and authorized by the New Liberal Democrat
Socialist Party's National Committee.
by Dale Hogue
The City awakens as from a sleep
by angry demons more than twelve miles deep
tearing painful adhesions, adjusting
cracks, breaking, slipping, sliding, combusting.
Bringing super pulverizing powers,
destroying homes and shaking towers.
Directed by the San Andreas fault,
it grinds old San Francisco to a halt.
Its fiendishly strong energy slashes
historical walls and bashes
those huddled in doorways amidst the cry,
"This is it for me, I'm going to die!"
From the Bay a horrifying wrecker
brings screams from under the double-decker
as devilish hands close collapsing fans
flattening all cars as they would beer cans.
This horrible scene, veiled in dusty smoke
and shuddering beneath this mighty stroke
causes the frightened people everywhere
to shout and scream their panic in the air.
At the Marina, there's terrifying
fires burning old homes and people dying
as flames do a mindless demonic dance
where sidewalks buckle and firehoses prance.
Everyone hears a dreadful howling sound
shattering, crashing, undulating, pound
with rumbling, vibrating, quickly pitching
as the earth loses some of its stitching.
In fifteen excruciating seconds
life is diminished when Hell's fire beckons
her to quit; she bends, but she doesn't break.
The City will come back, for Heaven's sake.
Reflections of a November Storm
by Dale Hogue
Lifeless old buildings on the sandy knoll
were large elephants, crusted with age
and tortured by the raw power from the sea
exposing their crinkly gray skin to the elements
and shivering against the afternoon chill.
They are derelicts stitting stoically as gray,
fern-covered patchworks of lacy dunes are
ruffled by chilly sea breezes.
Nearby, pine trees, aged, black and solemn
watching as a gathering November storm
hangs a misty haze over emerald waters,
giving the ocean a velveteen softness.
Near the shore, waves fluttering white-gloved
greetings to the beach as the sun bursts through
low-hanging clouds setting the water afire.
Golden spores turning to purple and reds
as dusk signals the coming of night.
Blackness swallows the yellows, greens and blues
and a curtain descends on the last remnants of daylight.
A deeper chill signals the prickly coming of the storm
as thunder flings groans of anguish up from the shore.
Naked elephants, wriggling from the sting of the storm's whip,
hunching their backs against the wind and digging into the sand,
ready themselves for battle one more time.
What A Long Trip It's Been
by Dale Hogue
I know where I am going
And I know where I have been,
Life's somewhere ahead of me,
Right behind a rainbow's end.
I've looked this old world over
And I've searched with all my might
To see if I could change my life
And make things turnout right.
I saw the world fly by me,
But it never left a trace
Of things that I was searching for
While running this human race.
When today becomes tomorrow
It will feel like yesterday,
For that's how things have happened
As I walked along this way.
I'd turn back all the pages
If only that I could
Completely change my life around
And live the way I should.
Nothing in life's been easy.
It is sometimes harsh and cold
And I don't expect a change in it
Until I'm gray and old.
I will bet my bottom dollar
That the life I've got ahead
Will be a great deal different
Than the one that I have led.
I will live this life of mine
In the best way that I can.
Now that I know my way around
I will follow the life I plan.
I know where I am going
And I know where I have been.
My life is just ahead of me,
Behind that rainbow's end.
Written by Dale Hogue
January 12, 2003
La Habra, California
AN ODE TO A BLANK PAGE
by Dale Hogue
We face each other again; I must confess
I'm happy that I no longer fear you, kid;
nothingess doesn't scare me as once it did.
At one time, my brain went as blank as your face,
and I do mean totally blank, I could find
not a trace of ideas entered my mind.
Wriggling in chairs, I ponder, I think, I swear
under my breath at my unresponsive brain
and I tear at emptiness I can't explain.
Did Walt Whitman have this problem when
writing or did he, as I, find it wasn't fair
that his thinking apparatus needed repair?
Other poets get bogged down some of the time
and that keeps my ego from turning to stone
to find that I'm not fighting this battle alone.
Gotcha, blank page! You can no longer destroy
the poet in me by sucking my juices;
Don't toy with word games,
for my ace beats your deuces.
I've been told that writing poetry of any kind
will not bring me big pay, if that is the case
I'll just end it this way.
SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT WHILE
HONORING MARTIN LUTHER KING JR.
About Reparations and Racism
Presidential candidate Al Sharpton says that one of the first things he would do as President of the United States is pay reparations to every African-American for the suffering that their ancestors received as slaves from the beginning of the colonial period until the end of the Civil War when the slaves were set free. No, he didn't say what he would do for all the white Americans whose ancestors fought in that war to free the slaves, but it is good that you are thinking about that as you read these words.
Perhaps he may suggest that a simple thank you would be reparations enough to the white Americans whose ancestors fought for the abolishment of slavery in this country. He might, but don't count on it! Mr. presidential candidate Sharpton, I would gladly accept a thank you from any black American in payment for the lives of 14 of my relatives who died fighting in the Civil War in order to free the slaves. While that would not be a complete payment for their sacrifices, it would indicate that at least some black Americans have finally come to their senses and would be acting as if they understood that this reparation business can work two ways.
I'm afraid that presidential candidate Al Sharpton needs to learn a great deal about humility as well as a great deal more about the history that relates to slavery in the Western Hemisphere. He needs to learn that the bulk of the slaves were brought to the new world by the Spanish settlers long before any of the English colonists got involved. His ambition blinds him to the fact that his cry for reparations to be paid by 21st Century white Americans--who had not one single thing to do with slavery--to 21st Century black Americans--who never were slaves-- is just about the stupidest idea ever presented by someone who believes he deserves to be president of the United States.
On Monday, January 20, most Americans will honor the memory of Martin Luther King Jr. What's that got to do with presidential candidate Al Sharpton? Not a heck of a lot, for Al Sharpton is the antithesis of Martin Luther King Jr. There are many black Americans in the United States who firmly believe that it is time for all Americans, black and white, to recognize where Al Sharpton stands and cast this racist bigot aside and ignore his demagogic ranting. They believe that this would be a good day to cast off the shackles that bind 21st Century black Americans to the history of slavery in our country. It would be the very best way to honor one of black and white America's greatest and most noble heroes
Martin Luther King Jr.
Presidential candidate Al Sharpton wants 21st Century black Americans to forget that from 1861 through 1865, half a nation fought against the other half over freedom for a small minority. He wants black Americans to forget that more that 186,000 black soldiers fought with white soldiers to help free their brother and sister slaves. He wants black Americans to forget that it was the bloodiest war during the nineteenth century and that of ever ten men who fought in this war, four became casualties (dead or wounded). He wants black Americans to forget that no other modern nation has paid so high a price to allow men, women and children to take off the chains that bound them to slavery.
If presidential candidate Al Sharpton wants to open old wounds caused by slavery for political reasons, then he should start his campaign by going back to Africa where slavery started and where slavery still exists (blacks owning blacks) and see if he can convince those African nations to end slavery like the United States has done. It would keep him busy for the rest of his life and he wouldn't be able to unsettle something in this country that so many people died to settle over 138 years ago.
Many Americans believe that the actions and words of presidential
candidate Al Sharpton brand him as a ruthless, bigoted racist and a
contemptible oppressor of the rights of all Americans. They feel that he has to know perfectly well what he is doing and that he must understand exactly what type of hornets nest he is stirring up. But they know that like all demagogues, Sharpton is blinded by his ambition to be a political force in his community and, as a result, he feels no shame!
The information from this point on in this essay came from
a column written by Jeff Jocoby of the Boston Globe.
Let us take a real good look at this demagogue. In 1987, demagogue Al Sharpton spread the incendiary Tawana Brawley hoax, insisting heatedly that a 15-year-old black girl was abducted, raped and smeared with feces by a group of whites. He singled out Steve Pagones, a young prosecutor. Pagones was wholly innocent - the crime never occurred -- but Sharpton taunted him: "If we're lying, sue us, so we can . . . prove you did it." Pagones did sue him and won a $345,000 judgment against Sharpton. To this day, Sharpton, the racist, refuses to recant his sick slander.
In 1991, A Hasidic Jewish driver in Brooklyn accidentally killed Gavin Cato, a 7-year-old black child, and anti-Semitic riots erupted. Sharpton raced to pour gas on the flames. At Gavin's funeral he railed against the "diamond merchants" - code for Jews - with "the blood of innocent babies" on their hands. He mobilized demonstrators to march in a Jewish neighborhood, chanting, "No justice, no peace." A rabbinical student, Yankel Rosenbaum, is surrounded by a mob shouting "Kill the Jews!" and stabbed him to death.
In 1995, When the United House of Prayer, a large black landlord in
Harlem, raised the rent on Freddy's Fashion Mart, Freddy's white Jewish owner is forced to raise the rent on his subtenant, a black-owned music store. A landlord-tenant dispute ensues and Sharpton used it to incite racial hatred. "We will not stand by," he warns, "and allow them to move this brother so that some white interloper can expand his business."
Sharpton's National Action Network set up picket lines; customers going into Freddy's are spat on and cursed. " "We're going to see that this cracker suffers," said Sharpton's colleague Morris Powell. On December 8, 1995, one protester burst into Freddy's Fashion Mart and shot four employees point-blank and then set the store on fire. Seven employees died in the inferno.
When Trent Lott made his unfortunate statement "about segregation," Al Sharpton was one of first members of the Democrat Party to call for Lott's resignation as the incoming Majority Leader of the Senate. We all know how that turned out--Trott resigned his position of incoming Majority Leader amid a fit of righteous anger from the leftists in the media concerning Lott's "so-called" racist attitude toward African-Americans and other minorities.
If Al Sharpton was a white Republican Senator he would be considered a political leper and would be spurned by his brethren, the media and the Democrat Party. But he is not spurned. Sharpton is adored by the Democrat Party leadership and is embraced as one of the premier African-American leaders in the United States by the media. Do the American voters want this hatemongering racial hustler in the White House?
La Habra, California
From Dale Hogue
Close your eyes and we'll travel back,
Before semiautomatics and ugly crack.
Before baggy pants and hip hop slangs
And big shot hustlers in chicken gangs.
At dusk, the children played hide 'n seek.
You went into the bushes to take a leak
While the family sat on the covered porch
Listening to the hum of the mosquito torch.
Ran in the sprinklers on a hot summer's day
And right in the middle of the fun and play,
"Don't wet my hair," said with giddy delight,
Signaled the beginning of a big water fight.
Loved playing sling shot and red rover slips,
Smelling the summer sun, licking salty lips,
Catching lightning bugs in a pickle jar,
And going around the block was just too far.
Getting mosquito bites and climbing trees,
Playing Cops and robbers, watching bumble bees,
Playing hard and running 'till you're out of breath,
Pillow fights at bedtime and being tickled to death.
Jumping down stairs or on your bed,
Falling on your bottom or on your head.
While getting real scruffy playing in dirt,
Laughing so hard made your tummy hurt.
Red light, green light, hopscotch and jacks
Marbles, kickball, and hotdog racks,
Hula hoops, sunflower seeds, jaw breakers,
Blowpops, Mary Janes and candy makers.
Eating penny candy in a paper bag,
Drinking chocolate milk and playing tag.
Licking the beaters when making a cake
Sure tasted good, for Heaven's sake.
Thrilled wearing your Mickey Mouse watch,
Eating ice cream sundaes with butterscotch.
A trip downtown was worth going there
When you saw the rodeo at the county fair.
Events presented in our poetic tours
Serving real well as nostalgic lures.
Much more will be written before we're done,
Covering those events under our sun.
IS THERE ANYONE OUT THERE?
by Dale Hogue
Nights lay quiet and solemn
and stillness fills the air.
My heart beats a steady rhythm,
does anyone really care?
Is there anyone out there
who really gives a damn
what I say and think and do
or who I really am?
Life goes on around me
as people hustle through
taking care of business
and talking right on cue.
Nothing seems to matter
to this world in which I live
except the almighty dollar
and what we have to give.
I thinks it's time to slow
our pace, if only a little bit,
so we've got time to learn
about those with whom we sit.
It only takes a minute
or three or maybe more,
to learn what exactly
your life may have in store.
Is there anyone out there
who really wants to know
about the roads they've taken
and where they're bound to go?
by Dale Hogue
My blood pressure's fine
And my joints still flex.
I never feel bad
But my life is complex.
Not a single thing's wrong
With my feet or my toes
And everything fits
In my closet of clothes.
When my stomach is queasy
And I think it's the flu.
I take the right pills
Till I feel good as new.
If something I eat
Makes a pain in my chest,
I visit my doctor
For a cardiac test.
Now, am I just confused
By irrational neurosis
Causing hormonal changes
And delusional psychosis?
A CONVERSATION WITH BIG FOOT
by Dale Hogue
In 1976, I was doing some work for the government
of the United States. It was my job to get information
on whether certain federal projects were accomplishing
the tasks set for them by Congressional edict.
While visiting some small logging companies in the
wilds of the Northwest, I came across a small cabin
community that was located deep within the forest of
pines that was off limits to farming by the companies
that were doing the logging. Most of the people living
in the community were old timers who grew their own
food and subsisted by the very nature of their living
peacefully with the environment.
The small road that entered the community was no
more than twelve feet wide at any point after a vehicle
left the main highway between two major cities that
were 217 miles apart as the crow flies. As you can tell
by the width of the road that it could safely be called
a trail or a path through the wilderness. It was covered
mainly by a grackle like substance that helped maintain
the road during the rainy season.
I had driven on this road for what I thought was about
40 miles--my odometer wasn't working for some reason--
or so before I came to the first outcroppings that made up
the community. As there were no signs of life of any kind
at that juncture I continued down the road for another 5
to 7 miles before meeting up with an old man who was
working along the road that had long since become a path
or trail fit only for animals and very small vehicles. It was
a good thing that my truck was very small or I wouldn't have
been able to drive more than a few hundred yards after I left
the main highway.
"Howdy," I said to the old man. "Does this road go much
"Yep, it does, indeed, go further. How fur do you want to
"As fur, I mean, as far as the road will take me. Are there
people living up the path a piece?" I asked.
"Yep," he answered never missing a stroke with the tool
that he was using to clear the brush from the path. "Are you
looking fur anybody?"
"Nobody in particular. I was just looking for a place where
I can get out of this truck and stretch my legs. It would be nice
if I could get something to eat and drink. Are there any cafes
or eating places up ahead?"
"Yep, every place is a eating place. The people are kindly
and would welcome you to sit down at their table and eat. But
there are no cafes." He stopped chopping, took off his hat and
wiped his brow with the sleeve of his shirt.
"How far is this place?" I asked.
"Not fur. Jest a bit down this path here. Keep goin'. You
won't miss it." He returned to his chopping.
Thus dismissed, I continued down the path. I hadn't driven
for more than 5 or 10 minutes before I happened on to what
appeared to be a small log cabin community. There were no people
walking down the main road or path that went passed the cabins.
If there were people in the cabins, they paid no attention to me or
my truck as I drove slowly by them. I stopped before one of the
larger cabins and turned off the engine of the truck. Opening the
door, I felt the coolness of the air on my skin. I reached for my
coat and put it on before I got out of the truck.
I stretched my legs and breathed deeply of the cool air. It
felt like I was drinking from a mountain stream. A coolness
like I had never felt before in my lifetime. I felt that parts of
my body were being energized by just breathing the air. Taking
a few steps to limber up my legs, I felt light and young again.
My knee, that I had injured playing football in college some
twenty years before, no longer gave me pain. I reached down
and rubbed it. There was no pain. "Well, I'll be dog gone,"
I said aloud to myself.
"I beg your pardon. Were you talking to me?" A little old
lady standing on the porch next to my truck pointed her hand
in my direction. I turned to get a better look at her and in that
instant she vanished back into the house closing the door behind
"No, I wasn't talking to you," I said to the door. There was
something going on in this little community that made me feel
that it was worth sticking around for several days to investigate.
I put on a heavier fur lined jacket and a pair of over boots,
took my hat from the side pocket of the jacket, shook it out and
placed on my head. Now, I was ready to do some serious exploring
of this strange little place. I locked the door to the cab after placing
my luggage, such as it was, inside.
Looking first to my right down the street from whence I had
come, then to my left up the street toward the larger cabins. Not
a single person was in sight. For all I knew at that time, this
was a vacant community except for the little old lady who spoke
to me before disappearing back into her house. I walked slowly
down the rutted road, making sure of my footing before placing
one foot in front of the other.
"You lost?" the voice came from the window of the cabin to
my left. Startled, I stopped to answer, but when I did so, the
window closed without me getting a good look at the person
who had spoken to me.
"You are a rather queer lot," I said to the voice that wasn't
there any longer. "You start a conversation, then end it abruptly.
Is there anybody here who feels like chatting a bit with a nice
young man who means you no harm."
"I'll chat a bit," the voice came from the trees next to a rather
large cabin to my right. "What do you want?"
"I would like to know the name of this community, for starters."
"It has no name. We just haven't gotten around to giving it a
"Well, that sounds reasonable. Did you know that your little
community is on federal land?"
"No, we didn't know that this land belonged to anyone when
we came here." The voice shifted its huge body in order to get
more comfortable. Even though it was standing in the shadows,
I determined that it stood a bit over eight feet tall and was wearing
what appeared to be a form fitting fur coat. It never entered my
mind that the fur was attached in any way to its body.
"You should have read the sign out on the highway. It says
that this forest and land belongs to the United States government
and that anybody who wants to travel through these trees must
get approval of the federal office in the nearest town."
"When we came here, there was no highway nor any town
nearby. There was just the trees and the land. We figured that
the land belonged to us, because we were here first."
"I'm not sure that it works that way. You see, a long time
ago, this land and the streams and the trees were taken over by
the federal government in order to protect them from being used
by people who might want to enjoy them."
"That doesn't make much sense. What is the point of having
land and streams and trees if nobody is allowed to enjoy them?"
"I can't answer that. I don't make the rules. I don't question
whether or not the rules make any sense. I just enforce them, that
is my job."
"What if we were here before the federal government gained
control of this land?"
"Were we what?"
"Were you here before the federal government gained control
of the land."
"I don't know. You see, we didn't know that this was federal
land when we came here."
"When did you come here?"
"I don't really know, but we have been here in this part of the
forest as long as I can remember."
"And how long can you remember/"
"I don't know. I do not understand how your time works. But
we have lived in this spot as long as our time has existed."
"And how long is that? Oh, I forgot you don't understand how
our time works. Well, whatever the case, you must get permission
from the federal government to live here."
"If we get permission, can we continue to live here?"
"I doubt that you will be able to get permission. Those guys in
Washington are pretty strict about who they allow to live on their
"Who gave them this land/"
"I don't know who gave it to them. I think that, one day, they just
decided that the land belonged to them. After they decided that they
owned the land they made rules to keep out anybody who wanted to
live here and enjoy the land."
"That doesn't sound fair."
"Who said that the government had to be fair? They do a lot of
things that don't sound fair, but they have the power to do it, so they
"I don't think I like your federal government."
"Get in line with the rest of us."
"Who made these people Gods of the land?"
"The American people voted to have some other people run the
federal government and do all their thinking for them."
"That doesn't sound too smart. And the people who run the
federal government don't sound too smart, either."
"You don't have to be smart, you just have to get elected and
that doesn't take much brain power."
"Are we through with this little chat?"
"Yes, I guess we are. What do you plan on doing? Are you
going to the nearby town to get permission to live here?"
"No, you said it wouldn't do us any good, so we would just
be wasting time--your federal government's and ours. So we
will continue to live here without their permission."
"How to you expect to do that? When I file my report the
government will know about this place and will send people
with guns to make you leave the land."
"No, they will not know that we live here."
"How to you figure that? I will leave and I will report that
you are living on federal land."
"Yes, you will leave, but you will not report that we are here
living in the forest and enjoying the streams and sky."
"Why won't I report you?"
"Because you will not remember that you were here. And if
you cannot remember that you were here, you cannot report us."
Having said that he moved back into the forest and was gone
I looked around some more, but nobody else came out to talk
to me. I began to feel very cold even though I had on my jacket.
I returned to my truck and found it turned around pointing in
the direction from whence I came. The motor was running. I
took that as a very serious hint, got into the truck and started
moving toward the highway. I passed the old man who was
cutting the branches along the path. He waved and asked if I
had enjoyed my visit. I didn't answer. I just kept driving.
When I got to the highway, I turned left toward Portland
and drove as quickly as I could. What had happened kept
running through my mind. When I got to my office I started
to write my report. I wrote the date. Then at the bottom of
the page I signed my name. The rest of the page remained
blank. I turned in my report along with my resignation and
left the state as fast as I could.
If I couldn't remember what happened then, why am I
writing this now? I don't know the answer to that question.
But the talk through the years about Big Foot always made
me uncomfortable and a bit uneasy. There has always been
something stirring in my mind about this experience, but I
couldn't quite get a handle on it.
Did I have a conversation with Big Foot that day? Bits
and pieces of that experience have come back to my mind
like an unstructured jig saw puzzle. Many times over the
years I've tried to put this puzzle together, but there were
too many missing pieces, so I stopped trying to make any
sense out of it until now.
Did the experience cause me to lose contact with reality?
Did the voice to whom I spoke make something happen to
my memory? Don't ask me that, for I don't have an answer
to that question. I don't know what it did, but it didn't do
my brain any good, at least that part of the brain that is
suppose to remember things.
I now realize that it said I would forget the experience,
but, if that's the case, why am I recalling these things at
this late date? My head hurts too much, so I'm going to
end this story right here. If you are still puzzled by it and
want to understand what happened, you figure it out!
And if you figure it out, let me know!
La Habra, California
Dear :-) me,
Nope, I have never considered going back to teaching in high school, but I would very much like to teach at the college level. Those students would be a challenge and I wouldn't have to concern myself with the discipline factor that creates problems in the high school level classroom.
Possibly teaching high school in a good private school, such as Punahou, might interest me. The student discipline problems in the public school classroom destroys the teacher's incentive to teach the subject matter because disciplining the lazy and the unruly "student" takes up too much of the teacher's time. How sad that is!
I would very much like to teach students in college who are auditing my class. They would be there because they wanted to learn and would not be concerned about what kind of grade that it would take to pass the course. No student would cheat on assignments or tests--for there would not be any incentive or a reason or advantage that would be gained by the student to do so.
I would engage these students in conversation and debates relative to the material being presented. And, best of all, the students would take from the class what was important to them. Now, that would be a dream teaching assignment. Do you know of any college where they would take me on and allow me to teach as I wanted to teach? I wouldn't need to be paid in money, because the satisfaction of teaching students who wanted to learn would be payment enough. You have my permission to pass this information on to your friends. They might be pleased to know that there
are teachers out there who really love teaching to students who really love learning. Dale
La Habra, California
*Gramps Loved things from the '20s,
'30s, '40s and '50s.
by Dale Hogue
Gramps was my best friend. I loved him better than I loved
anybody in the whole world. Every single weekend from the
time I got big enough to wander about his ship by myself, we
worked side by side in his combination work shop and music
room. He called this work space his ship. That's not a typo.
He joined the navy as soon as he was old enough and sailed
on almost every class of ship that the navy had in the 1920s,
1930s, 1940s and the 1950s. He was career navy.
During World War II he was stationed at Pearl Harbor, San
Diego and San Francisco at different times. His job was to
see to it that his ship was kept in good running condition and
was in fighting shape when it had to be. When he retired he
built his house to look like a ship both inside and out. When
he talked about his house he always referred to it as she.
We always listened to the music that came from his radio as
we worked on one of Gramps' projects. We built airplanes,
ships, automobile models, and models of things that Gramps
could only see in his head. We never worked from any of
those commercially built kits, the two of us built all models
from scratch. They were built of wood, plastic, metal and
some type of stuff that Gramps invented which he called
simply "magic stuff!" I didn't know the formula, but he did.
Gramps made sketches and then drew up blue prints from
which we worked. After we were finished, we tested the
model for durability and then painted it carefully, lovingly,
and expertly. All of Gramps models worked exactly like
they were meant to work. He never made a model that
failed to work. They all worked or ran, sailed or flew. He
never sold them, but he gave them to old friends who he
knew would provide good homes for them.
Gramps knew every single song that was popular in the
'20s, '30s, '40s and the 50s. He knew all the lyrics and
sang them as he played his piano---a piano, by the way,
that he built from scratch. He had taught himself how to
read music and to play every single musical instrument
known to mankind. Most of these instruments he made
He wrote thousands of poems on nearly every subject
that struck his fancy. He was the funniest man who I
ever knew--much funnier than any of those guys who
the public sees on stage and television. He told me
great stories that he had experienced either in real life
or in his imagination. He was the richest person in the
world--much richer than Rockefeller--easily so!
1301 Ironwood Street
La Habra, California 90631-7457
I sat down at the computer keyboard and this story
wrote itself using just my finger tips. I swear on that.
Gramps lives in my imagination and memory and no
where else that I know of.
By phone: United States 225-906-1712
Postal address: PO Box 83535 Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70884