Life is Like Kudzu
Life is like Kudzu left to its own devices it will choke everything about it.
I awake every morning exactly 45 seconds before the morning shock jock show began to spew out of the speakers. Invariability the dumb ass side kick is cackling about what the other idiot just said. One would think the smarter person, that would be me would set the alarm to buzz or music I enjoy rather than something that I hate. My thoughts are get pissed off enough to get out of bed and get things going. Anything pleasant might cause me to roll over and go back asleep. I am sure Rap would work as well but there is that chance that a song could get trapped in my feeble mind and I would go around all morning humming Baby Got Back. I'll just keep it as it is. You could say I grew up in a broken home. My Father was a very intelligent man. He made farm tools from scratch and was a self taught diesel and gas mechanic. He did this while operating a cattle farm near Terre Haute, Indiana. That wasn't the broken part. The last ten years of his life he began to drink very heavy and run around on my Mother. His idea of punishment was to beat you until you lost consciousness. As kids we hoped we did not come to too fast. He died when I was four and one half years old and I loved him. Still I am sure no ones life was like that of The Walton’s. The very idea to blame life's shortcomings on your parents is absurd. The first part of your life is formative but you have the power to change things yourself once you are on your own. Go look into the mirror if you want someone to blame. That is what this story is about. When life craps on you look up and see whom or what is doing the crapping. In most cases it is you who has started the colon dump. Our biggest downfall is the old adage The Other Mans Grass is Always Greener. After World War Two the GI's came back to a United States that was new again. Jobs were easy to get and credit was everywhere. In every major city housing tracts sprung up and the suburbs were born. If he wanted new cars were plenty. Most had two. They were born right after the Great Depression and their parents lived frugally. The men and women returning did not have to. They gave their children all what they needed and wanted. This was the start of the Baby Boomers whom I am a part of. Few of us had a mother that worked. She was there when we left for school and when we got home. Dad came home and we all ate in the kitchen or dinning room. Things were easy. Even after my Father died my mother did not work. My other siblings contributed and she had social security death benefits that came in. Life was not a breeze but I never went hungry nor did I ever not have shoes on my feet. When I turned ten my mother married the man she had turned down to marry my father years ago. He was a decent man and a good worker but they both drank and smoked more than they needed to. At eighteen I moved out and began my own life with my own set of missteps. I could not have had an easier road to go down. The Seventies were fun. Have you ever notice that as you go down a road your speed increases. The depression was years behind us and we did not want for anything. For most of us savings were something to do later. As Pandora’s box cracked open and the wiggly varmints came to life we enjoyed the new toys. Little items that used to be taboo began to be enjoyable. We could finally see what was under that dress we had so coveted. Imagination was replaced with a visual and the mind wanted more. As far as money was concerned we were making more than any previous worker had. The more we made the more we wanted until the tract houses were replaced with Subdivisions. Then they became Neighborhoods each time becoming larger and more expensive. Go into work one morning and your co-worker might tell about the new home he was moving into. Next he would bring you pictures and talk about the furniture and carpeting. A little more gas dripped on the fire and the next thing you knew the gremlin inside you had been fed after midnight and you had poured water on him. You have to one up the guy. After thirty years of this and after the kids have grow that alarm goes off in your head and says stop, if you are lucky. It may take a bankruptcy or a major health problem or both. Life is like kudzu. Kudzu is a plant that was brought into the US in 1876 from Japan to stop soil erosion. Unlike when it was in Japan it has no enemy and grows like crazy. Most of the south has it and it will take over anything. Even a building and cover it up. Life can overwhelm you and make you think what you have isn't good enough or big enough or isn't as pretty. If you let life overwhelm you or start thinking of what might have been you are going to get lost. Marriage is a good example. Both of you change and it is easy to look at your spouse and say “That is not the same women I married”. Alas neither are you.