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I confess to being a 66 y.o. old fart.  I further confess to having absolutely no idea how to help pregnant teens.  Please read a brief and humble rant below.  May whatever Gods exist...I am not optimistic in this regard...bless and help these na├»ve and loving young people.

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Gads, it has been nearly 2 years since I have published a diary.  My narcissistic self says WTF.

At any rate, please read my bias...and my opinions...in the body of this diary.

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Just wow!  My wife and I were walking North on LaSalle Street, in Chicago, early this afternoon.  I was not paying attention, but as we approached a 5 star restaurant, a well dressed young man in a suit stood in front of me and blocked my way.  Afterwards, my wife had thought he was a Mormon missionary, and I had thought that he was going to attempt to sell me something.  Neither was true.  Instead, he very politely stated "excuse me, sir, I am going to have to ask you to stop right here for a moment".  I then became more aware of my surroundings and saw lots of well dressed men in suits climbing out of black SUV's and limos.  Next, my wife said "It's Mayor Daley".  Indeed it was Mayor Daley walking past us no more than 3 or 4 feet away.  I raised my hand and waved to Mayor Daley and he came over, shook my hand, my wife's hand and visited with us for a minute or two.

I don't know if this is an appropriate topic for a diary, but I would like to share my experience and my perceptions of Mayor Daley.  

Lead on, McDuff.

Poll

Would I rather have a bottle in front of me or a frontal lobotomy? Hey, it's St. Paddy's day.

83%10 votes
16%2 votes

| 12 votes | Vote | Results

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Damn, I'm 63, soon to be 64 in October.  I am a quite functional alcoholic.  I am financially stable, some would consider me wealthy and I guess that I am.  My wife and I have reared two successful children, one with a phd and another with two master's degrees.  Both are financially independent although mom and dad will always be in the background to help them should they fall.  I have a beautiful...love of my life beautiful... grand daughter who just started kindergarten and who I believe with all of my heart will grow to be a successful and happy adult.  The image that is always in my mind of my beautiful wife is how she was waiting on her Sgt. E-5 man on a train platform in January wearing a fur collared coat that I still remember well.  She was the only one who greeted my early morning return approximately 24 hours post Vietnam.

If you will stay with me, there is a point to my narcisistic intro.  You see, I suffer from  PTSD.  I have done many things to deal with my PTSD.  I take a PTSD dose of an SSRI.  I have participated in cognitive behavioral therapy thanks to the VA.  I work in a helping profession, which more than anything else has allowed me to keep on keeping on.  As I help others today, it helps me to feel atonement for the role that I played as a soldier in Vietnam.  It also helps me to salute my brothers and sisters who have not been as successful as I have been, though in saluting them, I feel guilt for my relative prosperity.  It is all very complicated to me.

Gads, forgive me if the preceding seemed maudlin.  I can assure you that I am one tough MF survivor.  It is just that after 4 glasses of wine and after listening to Jimi Hendrix and watching the requisite video of Vietnam on youtube that accompanies Jimi, I feel a need to speak about the reality of war and of being a veteran.

I served exactly...almost, I was dusted back...one tour in Vietnam.  I know what one tour in Vietnam  has done to my psyche.  This diary is wont to explore what the consequences that multiple tours in Iraq and Afghanistan must do to the psyches of our current brave soldiers.

Allons!!! I rode with the Blackhorse in 1969 and 1970.  May God bless my brothers and sisters who served.  May God damn the chickenshit politicians who manufactured the war in Vietnam that never needed to be fought.  I will not go into details, but if you are one who believes that our purposes were pure in Vietnam, then I fervently invite you to objectively research the politics that led up to our involvement in Vietnam.

The more things change, the more that they stay the same.  If you feel that our intentions are pure in Afghanistan  and Iraq, then I invite you similarly to objectively research the politics that led up to our involvement in these two wars.

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Being essentially a lazy lout who hates the thought of actually doing hard research...sorry, I was researched out years ago in grad school... I would like to offer a chronology of what I have observed in my adult life, as well as my analysis of the consequences of the events that I plan to place in chronological order.

I should tell you that my bias in my remarks is based upon my murky childhood memories of living in a project house and later in a variety of working class neighborhoods where people actually sat on their front porch at night and visited with their neighbors.  There was no money; there was a neighborhood bar on most corners, and there was a tremendous sense of community.  Alas, it is my belief and bias that we have lost our sense of community in the United States.

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