Friday, January 19

Dear Jim,

The pope’s in Peru. I turned on Radio Católica expecting to hear the regular programs, but instead there was coverage of his trip.

Today’s event was the right-to-life march. You should have heard how loud the marchers were. It sounded like a party. The announcers said that there was a very large amount of young people.

It’s nice to hear people celebrating rather than complaining. I wish I had something to celebrate. I am glad that these young people oppose abortion. One of the reasons Europe and America have degenerated is because of all the abortions women have had and still demand.

It’s amazing that I’ve never heard any boomers say how badly we screwed up, and how badly we screwed up the country and the West because of our successful demand for cheap legal abortions.

I remember the time you told me you were sitting in the cafeteria at S. F. State. A table of women were talking about their abortions. You were shocked how nonchalantly they talked about them. You were surprised that more than one woman at the table had more than one abortion. They had no sense of guilt or shame.

It’s funny that the Progressives and people who are not Christian demand that The Church apologize for it’s sins against Jews and other groups, that the United States apologize to blacks, Indians and Mexicans, that white people apologize to Indians, Mexicans and blacks; but nobody is saying that European governments, and the American government, should apologize for passing laws that allowed so many babies to be killed, and that the citizens of Europe and the United States should apologize for all the babies they flushed down the toilet and all the hosrseshit relationships that created the abortions.

Last Monday was MLK Day. I turned on the radio twice. I listened for a half an hour each time. Each time he wasn’t the focus.

I listened because I knew I should get out of my comfort zone. I enjoyed each show. I learned a lot.

But I get tired of black people never mentioning how badly they have screwed up themselves and the country. I get tired of white Progressives who are offended when I say I think 52 years is plenty of time to get it together.

I told dad the pope was in Peru. He already knew it. I said, ”Wasn’t one of the popes in San Francisco?” He said that he was at the cathedral when the pope said Mass there.

The poor pope. I wonder how many body guards he has. What if somebody killed him?

But I want to talk more about race. The other night when I got home from work I was exhausted. I couldn’t read or study, so I turned on YouTube. I typed Sacramento, then I think I typed something else. A boring list came up. Then I saw Sacramento Rappers.

I like rap. Sacramento was, and maybe still is, a famous rap city. So I clicked it.

There were several rappers listed but I kept scrolling. I saw some descriptions of videos saying that ”This is the video of the such-and-such gang.”

I clicked one from two years ago. There were at least 50 Mexican gang guys on the stage at Southside Park. They were milling around, each guy singing the song that a professional rapper was singing for the video. I could hear the singer but not the guys on the stage standing with Aztec murals behind them.

It was incredible. They were so pissed off. So filled with hate. The camera went from one small group of guys to another, focusing on one guy as he pulled up his shirt to show his tattoos, on another guy as he made angry faces at the same time he was making gang signs with his hands and fingers, on another guy as he pulled a pistol out of his pants. Every once in a while a couple of guys were taking a swig of liquor. And they were all singing.

It’s terrifying that there are so many pissed off young men with guns. Progressives laugh when somebody like me talks about proving one’s manhood, but these pissed off young guys show that there is a need to prove one’s manhood.

The argument usually is that white people are responsible for all the brown and black gangs. If only there were not these horrible white racists making all these black and brown guys join gangs to kill each other.

I think it’s a gender issue. There is nothing for young men to do. Black and brown guys join gangs. White guys camp under the freeway.

Nobody is doing anything to get these guys working so that whatever fears they have will not take such a violent terrifying turn. It’s a woman’s world, but everybody blames the young men for being pissed off and afraid.

It’s the playoffs. Last Sunday there were two incredible games.

I think about football all the time. My hero is Merlin Olsen. He played all 15 years of his career with the Rams.

I remembered when he retired. There was an article in the LAT one Sunday about him. It said that the guys he played against said that Olsen never cheated.

Isn’t that something!

It’s a bad time to be male bro. Those gang guys hate me and I hate them, but they don’t know we’re both pieces of shit.

I hope it’s freezing in New England on Sunday.

Love,

Dave

Copyright © 2021 by David Vaszko

Friday, September 1

Dear Jim,

It´s 8:00 pm in the hot, smoky, dusty River City. It was 107°. In San Francisco it was 106°. I told dad I would rather be in Sacto than in S. F. when it´s that hot. Dad agreed. San Francisco is humid.

One good thing about the smoke is that it blocks the sun so I don´t have to worry much about sunburn.

I had a chiropractic appointment at 11:30. I didn´t want to stay home all morning so I went to the neighborhood park and read for an hour, then walked to her office.

I love going there. Every two months I go. I started going because I thought that since
I´m getting older, It would be a good idea to keep myself loose and to catch any problems at an early stage.

She´s good for me – a real old school character. She´s a few years older than I am so I hope she stays strong. She gets physical.

How are you? It´s September. You loved September and October. You used to go to the beach during Indian Summer and run, following the patterns of the water as it came to shore. I was afraid to take my shoes off at the beach because of the broken glass.

When I was in the 6th – 8th grade and you were in college, the city started to get dirty with broken bottles, pull tops, fast food packages, and dog shit.

The dog shit was incredible. Remember the time I stepped in some and you made me take my shoe off and put it in the trunk?

Our sisters were with us. It was a night in Indian Summer. We were at an ice cream parlor.

In the 80´s I was with some people on Irving Street. You remember all the shit – when a woman slipped and fell real hard. She was pissed off. I would be too.

Cities are cleaner today. Bottles are recycled. There hasn´t been pull tops for Lord knows how long. People put their hamburger wrappings in the garbage now. There isn´t a lot of dog shit on the street or in parks because people scoop their dog´s shit into a plastic bag, then put it in a garbage can.

What´s funny, and I have been saying this for twenty years, women don´t walk barefoot anymore. When we were young, women walked barefoot all the time, even with all the glass and dog shit.

Now there isn´t a lot of glass or poop, but only a few people walk barefoot. Being barefoot was a woman´s thing – their connection to the earth, their trust in the universe, their willingness to cut loose.

Maybe being barefoot makes them feel vulnerable in this age of terror. They are afraid of being raped or having their purse snatched. Being barefoot and carefree will make them more of a target.

I also think women don´t want to walk barefoot because the world is fast and furious. Women want the power that comes with wearing shoes, or at least to be taken seriously when they aren´t barefoot.

And last, the world has become so male in all the bad uses of the term, that women have become like the old time men, hard driving and afraid to be vulnerable.

If my feet weren´t deformed, I would walk barefoot all the time. I don´t want anyone to laugh at them or ask me about them.

When I went to a custom shoe guy for inserts 17 years ago, he told me that I have everything you do not want in a foot – real wide spread of toes, real narrow heal, high arch, high instep, and the index toe much longer than the big toe. Remember you used to laugh at my index toe protruding through the tip of my sock?

My chiropractor and I talk a lot. I made her laugh one day when I said, ¨I love my feet.¨

They have been through club feet and a major operation. If they had been normal, I would have been a little better in sports. I did so much with them – all my wanderings through Golden Gate Park and along the beach; my nine years as a gardener; all the boogieing; all the wandering in Sacramento; the time I walked along the railroad tracks from Chico to Marysville – that was a great trip.

In the last week I needed to be barefoot. Twice when I went to the park I took off my shoes and socks to walk on the dry lawn. My feet got dusty and I loved the touch of the dryness.

I would love to be barefoot all the time. It´s good for your soul.

Wednesday was the end of my 37th year in Sacto. I wish I could say Sacramento is a great city. But it isn´t. It has nice weather. The City has great views. But weather and vistas have nothing to do with whether a city has soul or whether the citizens trust each other.

I wish I could say I am happy and feel free here, but I can´t. I remember moving to the old part of town when I got here. I loved it because of the trees and the old houses, but I felt the people were phony. They thought they were cool like the people at 9th and Irving thought they were cool and the people on Carl Street thought they were cool and the people at City Lights thought they were cool.

Now the phony bohemians are priced out of Midtown and we have the Yuppies from the Bay Area. I still love the trees and old houses.

Well Jim, I´m trying to free myself and love the times I live in and love my fellow Americans who I do not like. I want you and mom to pray for me.

I´ve been reading Octavio Paz – The Labyrinth of Solitude – in Spanish. He wrote it in 1950. Did you read it?

It´s great. He talks about the inferiority complex Mexicans have. He said the macho attitude of Mexicans is the way Mexicans, male and female, deal with the pain they feel from being torn from their connection to nature, their Aztec past.

He says Mexicans have tremendous passion that is pent up from not being able to be the type of person and the type of nation they want to be. They have all these holidays where they get drunk, scream ¡Viva Mexico!, and knife each other. But those things don´t heal the ¨rupture¨ from nature or get them on the track to ¨transcending their isolation.¨

I´m trying to heal my rupture and transcend my isolation. I´ve already drank and yelled. I never had the ability to fight.

If Mexicans never heal themselves, they can still scream ¡Viva Mexico! and ¡Viva Maria!.

I better heal myself, because there´s nothing for me, as an American or a Catholic, to shout about.

Love,

Dave

Copyright © 2021 by David Vaszko