Category Archives: Families

Party Kiss

This was my first real New Year’s Eve and I drank beer and wine and bourbon and kissed a couple of girls I’d been too shy to talk to, and we all toasted Helen’s parents for being out of town. I remember the countdown to midnight and cheering before I gave Karen a big wet […]

Also posted in Alcohol, Parties

Sonny Liston is Santa Claus

This story is part of the collection “Death in the Ring”

Also posted in Alcohol, Boxing, Christmas, Floyd Patterson, Santa Claus, Sonny Liston

The In Crowd

I’m a leader and other girls do what I say and fifteen are helping me deal with Rebecca. I’m bigger and can easily beat her up by myself but that’s not the point. I want everyone to hate her. She used to see a guy who dropped her for me. That’s not enough either. The […]

Also posted in Bullies, Bullying, Education, Mental Health, Suicide

End of Suffering

Frankly, I don’t often feel well and really should say I never do. I don’t know what the problem is but try to feel better by smoking bath salts, not the stuff you use in the tub but a combination of chemicals that’re way stronger than amphetamines. This morning the bath salts hit me much […]

Also posted in Bakersfield, Drugs, Mental Health, Murder

Our Son

He’s good son until bipolar disorder attacks in high school and makes crazy, and Dad and I are relieved he marries bipolar woman and moves away so we rarely see. Years later he calls and says she divorced him, and I overrule Dad and say, we’ve got to make room. In few days he’s scarier […]

Also posted in Mental Health, Murder

Adopting Sonny Liston

This story is part of the collection “Death in the Ring”

Also posted in Alcohol, Boxing, Crime, Drugs, Sonny Liston

Next Door

This story is now in the collection “Tales of Romance”

Also posted in Marriage, Prostitution, Sex, Short Pieces - GTC

When Mind Closed In

I lived in a box attached in back of the landlord’s house and often talked to her visiting son, Jim, a disciplined college student who usually brought his cute girlfriend. Afterward, his mother would proudly say they were going to get married when Jim graduates which he did after a fifth year, much faster than […]

Also posted in Mental Health, Schizophrenia, Short Pieces - GTC

Our Final Days

Early on a Saturday morning in late June my stepfather, age eighty-seven and already weakening, suffered a stroke that rendered him unconscious. Inside a large hospital emergency room the only doctor on duty was too busy to look closely, so a few nurses and technicians strongly sedated him, stuck a tube down his throat and […]

Also posted in Aging, Hospitals, Marriage

Executive Jack

Monday after high school graduation kid was required to become adult, moving long miles to Los Angeles and working in south central warehouse owned by gray parental friend named Jack who invited to dinner first night. In large Palos Verdes home south of city Jack and wife greeted kid and promised he’d have great summer. […]

Also posted in Alcohol, Football, George Allen, Los Angeles, Short Pieces - GTC

Lion Family

author of “the serengeti lion” doesn’t understand father ripping cubs to death or mother eating their guts Source: “Wild Things” by David Samuels in Harper’s June 2012.

Also posted in Africa, Lions, Poetry - GTC

Ugandan Birth Control

ugandan mother of seven declines birth control so husband won’t beat again

Also posted in Africa, Birth Control, Marriage, Uganda

Pool Player

Fourteen relatives, who’d already lost in Christmas 8-Ball Shootout, encircled pool table and were joined by everyone else, and all swigged beers or sodas and munched rich appetizers as watched finalists and pre-tourney favorites Bill and Fred strike and counter with deadly long shots, cut shots kissing balls into unlikely pockets, and taps leaving cue […]

Also posted in Alcohol, Food, Health, Pool, Short Pieces - GTC

Electric Razor

Bob and stepfather didn’t get along but Bob always admired man’s affluence and, recently, fancy new electric razor. Before school, when it hummed, Bob knew couldn’t borrow razor. He’d only have access when old man was out running company. On easy afternoon Bob checked mother wasn’t lurking, and then rushed into master bathroom, plugged in […]

Also posted in Divorce, Marriage, Short Pieces - GTC

Margaret and Bill

This story is now in the collection “Tales of Romance”

Also posted in Homosexuals, Infidelity, Infideltiy, Marriage, Poetry - GTC, Short Pieces - GTC

Open Door

open door lures boy into painted room ejected by howling father

Also posted in Poetry

Protecting Women Surrealist Painters

This story is from the collection “Paint it Blue” To see “Birthday” by Dorothea Tanning, please click here To see “Self Portrait 1937-38” by Leonora Carrington, please click here

Also posted in Art, Birds, Dorothea Tanning, Hollywood, LACMA, Marriage, Mental Health, Painters, Surrealism, World War II

Downtown Drinkers

Tim and Billy were barhopping in brand new old downtown. They always drank too much and Tim used buzz to talk to women. Billy usually became quieter. On Saturday night Tim brought young woman back to table and charmed her while Billy tried to say few words. When she went to restroom Tim told Billy […]

Also posted in Alcohol, Friendship, Sex, Short Pieces - GTC

Bobby Brown – The Whole Truth

Before presenting what Bobby Brown allegedly said and did, I must explain this book was originally conceived as an autobiography and author Derrick Handspike, according to his account, hung out with and interviewed the singer for a year, diligently wrote the book, and later squirmed as Brown and his advisers delayed final preparations for publication. […]

Also posted in Alcohol, Bobby Brown, Cocaine, Drugs, Heroin, Marriage, Music, Whitney Houston

Home Escape

This story is now in the collection “Tales of Romance”

Also posted in Employment, Housing, Marriage, Mental Health, Short Pieces - GTC

Oral Alarm Clock

deep voice grinds my name too early every morning

Also posted in Mental Health, Poetry - GTC

Big Al Allosaurus Responds to Brother – Part 2

How strange my brother accuses me of predatory incompetence and cognitive ineptitude. Let me clarify dark history with precision dear brother never practiced or understood. As youngsters he frequently tried to maim me and other siblings but I always overpowered him and rebuked with restrained bites. Our mother never disciplined him and would’ve perhaps turned […]

Also posted in Allosaurus, Dinosaurs, Short Pieces - GTC

Brother Allosaurus Remembers Big Al – Part 1

I’m not jealous my brother Big Al receives much publicity a hundred fifty million years after death. In life we emerged from the same subterranean nest of a hundred allosaurus eggs and soon, following carnivorous instinct, bit, clawed, and wrestled each other, and serendipitously survived while most siblings died from illnesses or attacks by dinosaurs […]

Also posted in Allosaurus, Dinosaurs

Executive Jack

Click here to read and excerpt from “Snapshots of Distressing Events”

Also posted in Alcohol, Football, George Allen, Los Angeles, Mental Health, Poetry - GTC

Nice Meeting You

hi bill young man said hello replied older have we met not really how’d you know name remember mom who here’s picture with you haven’t seen in twenty years and nine months

Also posted in Poetry - GTC

Proper Rest

father died from drink but also suffered arising early carlos avoids that asleep all day mother ironing his clothes

Also posted in Alcohol, Poetry - GTC

Daddy’s Bikini

next to bikini he stands face red as daughter’s hair next to gut she poses smile big as father’s frown

Also posted in Children, Poetry - GTC

Material Handler on the Road

I still wonder if my adult working career for many years progressed like a tortoise in sand because of apathy or a reflexive hatred of manual labor that began too soon, at age nine, when my mother remarried and her new husband, a drill sergeant masquerading as an electrical engineer and contractor, drafted my stepbrother […]

Also posted in Abraham Lincoln, Alcohol, Auburn, Babe Ruth, Billie Holiday, Bob Dylan, Burbank, California, California Youth Authority, Carmel, Cars & Driving, Chico, Clint Eastwood, Coast Ranges, Construction, Drugs, Electricians, Errol Flynn, Frank Lloyd Wright, Fresno, George S. Patton, George Thomas Clark, Grass Valley, Hollywood, Interstate 5, Los Angeles, Manual Labor, Marijuana, Media, Mental Health, Monterey, Newspapers, Pacific Ocean, Rocklin, Rolling Stones, Sacramento, San Francisco, Seattle, Sierra Nevada, Stephen Stills, Stockton, Television, Unions

Yuletide Mishaps

This story is now in the collection “Tales of Romance”

Also posted in Calabasas, Christmas, Food, Health, Hospitals, Mushrooms, Pigs - Oscar

Edna Wallace: 1916-2009

This is a tribute I wrote for a family anthology about my Aunt Edna Wallace, whose memorial tribute is Saturday One of my most exciting memories as a kid came when I was about 12 in the mid-1960’s and visited the Wallaces in big L.A.  I thought it was cool I had an aunt, Edna, […]

Also posted in Aging, Death, George Thomas Clark