Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Brass Tacks...

I Don't Know...

3 words that each have their own definition but when put together, can be so hard to accept, explain or make things or situations hard to understand.

This phrase has been pinging around against the inner walls of my head lately a lot.  They are kind of like that computer screen saver that slowly starts in one corner then works it's way up, down or over to the opposite side only to bounce off and head back the other way.  Never back to the exact same spot, just off to the side so that it bounces around coming into contact with all sides.

I've let these words do this most of my life, sometimes I think I used them as an excuse to avoid having to address some things I didn't want to address.  You know just put it up high on a shelf so you don't have to think about it. But now, with extra time on my hands I'm able to sit and reflect on what has gone in my life these  and three words have started to make me wish I did know and understand why some things have happened.

So... Even though I may not like the answers I'm going to think about them and try to figure out why some things are the way they are and try to accept it or decide to figure out what I can do about it.

So here we go, taking it down to the Brass Tacks.

Most of my life I have tried to make sure I have treated others the way I would want to be treated. Close to a majority of that time has been with Sylvia as a couple,  But for right now, in this writing,  I am speaking for myself so blame her not for anything that what I am about to say.

I think we have shared or given much to others without expecting much in return, maybe just a little acknowledgement that we were there when needed. Oh, I know that some of my actions were hard to accept by others but they were actions that in the place and time, I felt had to be done. They,  many times hurt me just as much if not more then the one's it was placed upon or the recipient of. Many times mine were reactions not initiations based on what others had done.  I just wish that they would remember and accept that.

I come from a family that at one time were very close, that reached out to each other, that wanted to know that everything was OK.  To me and it maybe it's only me,  feel that is not the norm anymore.  If it is something I have done. If something I have done is embarrassing to them, I am sorry you are. I promise you it was not intentional.

 I know that my physical distance for a large part of my life has been a factor in helping to keep the relationships strong but again they were not done intentionally, not done to runaway or to pull away.  My moves have each been done for a reason that at the time was for the best of my immediate family.

I don't understand why there seems to be a barrier between some that I am related to,  I thought that I had pretty well done right by everyone but it seems sometimes that those that I would love to enjoy and be part of their lives, I am only recognized when it is something that I said or did that they did not like or agree with. But please understand this I am part of this family and I will always be part of this family and I am proud of being part of this family  and that will never change, because I proud of being a member of the Glass Family.   But anyway, if that is the way it is, then that is something that I am going to have to learn to deal with even though it hurts very much.

Once, I was told during a conversation about occupations and skills that allows attaining new occupations I was asked "Well, why would you ever be told you were "over qualified for that, what have you ever done." That gave me the impression that maybe I was not perceived as a person of much value, worth, or have the abilities to hold positions that hold high expectations. I know that is not true because I have held them and I did them and did them well.  But still, just the comment being made, it makes me wonder if  that the way I am perceived by others.  If that is true, then to those people, you don't know me or you are not willing to accept my accomplishments for whatever reason.  But I will tell you this... I am proud of what I have done and the positions I have held.  I have held jobs from the being the boss to being the lowest man on the ladder.  But no matter what the job was, I can say I did the best at whatever I was doing. So take me for what I am and what I have done because I know I have done better and more then some. Am I proud of what I have done?  Damn Straight... So live with it.

So... for now.. I'll step down off my soapbox. Stepped on some toes? Oh well.  But the Doc says that sometimes you just got to get it off your chest.  So I did.  But also know I'm not embarrassed for what I say because it is the way I feel.  Trust me, there will probably be more later.

Johnny
Onward Thru The Fog.













 






Friday, December 23, 2016

Do You Think He Knew

12/23/2016
I woke this morning at 4 a.m. with this question in my head.  So odd, because I already knew the answer... So I sat down and wrote this prose.  I hope that Peace and Joy finds you this Christmas and that the True Meaning of Christmas is felt in your heart.   
Please.... Have a Very Merry Christmas... 
Do you think that he knew?
This one that took him there.
Was he also given a mission,
Had the message been whispered in his ear?
Did he know this package he bore,
before too long would change the world?
Did he know that he carried the answer,
That so many had been waiting for?
I sometimes wonder,
Do you think he knew?
Did it make him want to walk with extra care,
Those steps he took along the way?
When to stop and take a rest
Because he knew who he carried,
Would mean so much to so many, even to this day.
Did he know the way?
Had he been told which paths to take,
which were the safest ways to go?
So that the coming would be a little easier
For the precious gift he carried, for us to know.
Do you think he knew he carried our Savior, Our Redeemer,
Did he understand that what he carried,
was the 1st True Miracle, for all the world to see,
Did he know that what he was about to share,
was the one and only answer that will save you and me.
As for me, yes, I think he knew
that he carried God’s Son.
Back then, when it was hard to know who to trust.
Yes, I truly believe he knew
he was part of bringing our salvation to us.
Yes, he shared with Mary and Joseph the Secret
That what he carried was meant to be.
God had been given him that task
And he did it freely, for you and me.
So when I see one standing in a field,
I realize now, why they are usually not
asked to carry a burden anymore.
Because now I understand
That a very special one of them, way back then,
just like Jesus did for me and you,
He did….. all that he was asked to do.
Peace Be With You..
Johnny


Image may contain: horseDo you think that he knew?
This one that took him there.
Was he also given a mission,
Had the message been whispered in his ear?
Did he know this package he bore,
before too long would change the world?
Did he know that he carried the answer,
That so many had been waiting for?
I sometimes wonder,
Do you think he knew?
Did it make him want to walk with extra care,
Those steps he took along the way?
When to stop and take a rest
Because he knew who he carried,
Would mean so much to so many, even to this day.
Did he know the way?
Had he been told which paths to take,
which were the safest ways to go?
So that the coming would be a little easier
For the precious gift he carried, for us to know.
Do you think he knew he carried our Savior, Our Redeemer,
Did he understand that what he carried,
was the 1st True Miracle, for all the world to see,
Did he know that what he was about to share,
was the one and only answer that will save you and me.
As for me, yes, I think he knew
that he carried God’s Son.
Back then, when it was hard to know who to trust.
Yes, I truly believe he knew
he was part of bringing our salvation to us.
Yes, he shared with Mary and Joseph the Secret
That what he carried was meant to be.
God had been given him that task
And he did it freely, for you and me.
So when I see one standing in a field,
I realize now, why they are usually not
asked to carry a burden anymore.
Because now I understand
That a very special one of them,
way back then, just like Jesus did for us,
He did….. all that he was asked to do.
Peace Be With You..
Johnny

Monday, December 19, 2016

They Are Still With Me

Remember....


Sometimes, I sit on my porch with a cup of coffee and enjoy the evening's arrival.

If you were to drive by, you would think that I'm sitting alone, all by myself.

That couldn't be the farthest thing from true.

As I think back, they come and join me,

My Parents, Grandparents, Aunts and Uncles, Cousins and other Kinfolks. who have gone on ahead.

We sit and talk, each with their own story, always ending with a laugh or at least a smile.

And someone saying "Yea, I remember that."

We remind each other of those things that was and should still be important in each of our lives.

Family, Integrity, Honor, Friendship, Loving, Caring and Giving.

We talk about the way it was, the way it is and the way we hope it will be.

I sit and listen to each of them and I smile.

I smile because I understand just how lucky I am

To be a part of such an amazing family.

Then, as the sun sets and the night takes over,

Then they stand and walk out into the darkness each turning and reminding me to "Remember".

And I smile again, thanking them and I give my promise to each and everyone of them,

That yes, I will remember, that I will never forget.

Merry Christmas Everyone, to those who are both here... and there...

Johnny
December 2016

Friday, December 16, 2016

Country Boy Bottle Rocket Wars

When you come from a family the size of my family you can expect to see just about anything when we got together.  My Father had 2 Brothers and 3 Sisters.  When the hormones had set in and they were all married off, they produced a batch of rascals which consisted of 27 Grandchildren for my Grandparents. 21 Boys and 5 girls (if I remember right, don't hold me to the figures, I'm old...)

Now the only thing that saved the world was that God had placed my Grandparents on a ranch far away from the hustle and bustle of what then was a pretty mellow town by the name of Austin, Texas. This was a good thing, because when you got the S,F, Glass Family together, there was no doubt a little bit of noise to be raised.

This happened usually twice a year. Once on the Sunday following the 4th of July which was the Glass Family Annual Reunion and on Christmas Eve at my Grandparents house which just by coincidence was directly across from our house.

There were many family rituals that occurred during that evening, a lot of eating, a lot of laughing, a lot of "do you remember when's",  There was the gathering of the entire family in one room for the Story from the Bible about the Birth of Jesus, a few songs, and the passing out of gifts.

And then, there was the Bottle Rocket War...

The rules were simple... All cousins from about the age of 12 were split into 2 groups.  The battle ground, was the street between the 2 houses.  Each of their front yard fences were the edge of the DMZ.

The object... to try and make as many cousins as possible on the other side duck, dodge, drop to the ground or if nothing else turn their backs on the incoming bottle rocket that had been zero'ed in on you.   Ammo was usually quantified by no more then a Gross (12 Dozen) bottlerockets per participant.

L.L.A. (legal launching apparatus) was anything you could come up with that would help to assist the rocket to find a straight and true path across the street and into the crowd of cousins on the other side. These homemade mortars consisted of,  but were not limited to,  the tubes from golf bags, copper pipes, old BB guns or popguns with the insides ripped out and one of my favorite, a old double barreled no longer usable 12 gauge shot gun.  Or... if you really got good at it to hold the bottle rocket in hand, light it and hurl it high in the air so that when the fuse hit the black powder inside the projectile would have reached it's highest altitude and was pointing towards the ground, hopefully towards the "other" yard.... Very effective, IF at that point in time,  it was pointed toward THE OTHER YARD. Needless to say.... not always the case...

All of these contraptions had been invented during the week before said competition in the garages, tool sheds or barns by each participant.  Some were hold-outs from previous wars, others were "new and improved" assault gear.

Other weapons consisted of  dried "buffalo goards" with a Black Cat Firecracker pushed down in it or a smoke bomb, which was lit and hurled (with very little effect) but was good for making the opposing team run away from it screaming as if it was about to blow up at their feet, which it usually didn't do.  The other option was to just throw the smoke bombs, which when hurled into the opposing team made it hard to find the fuse on your bottle rocket to light or to cause them to run into each other in the low hanging cloud of smoke that settle over each front yard.

What determined the "Winners"?  Well claims and bragging were always made by both sides but actually, everyone one was a winner as long as "someone" didn't get hurt which every one of our Mothers had said was going to happen just before the starting of the game,  as if that was going stop the war from happening, yea right.    It was simple, the fight continued until all the rockets were gone.

Then, it was time for the High Altitude Fancy Rockets, Roman Candles, whistlers, spark spewing mini tanks, poppers and Sparklers for the smaller kids which ended with at least one or two burning the ends of their fingers by trying to hold it to long or picking up a spent sparkler which was still hot.  "Dang, those stung".

When all was said and done and everything which held gunpowder inside it were gone we all slowly headed back into the house for dessert and then the dreaded hugging and kissing of the Aunts and saying Goodbyes until.... next year....

Ah.... for the good ole days....

Merry Christmas Everyone.

Johnny






Saturday, December 3, 2016

A Christmas Wish

From Our Family to Yours....

Do you still have a place in your heart for me?

I really hope and want there so much to be.

They say that many have pushed me out.

That for some, there is no reason for me to come South.


I can remember when you were so little and small.

You had no doubts, to you then, I was Ten feet Tall.

I meant that there was good in the world for all the world to see.

Which meant that there was a reason for there being a me.




So. I ask you again? Do you still have a place in your heart for me?

I really hope and want there so much to be.

Because, It is the season for happiness and joy

For each and every Girl and Boy.


I am so hoping that I will see you soon

But until then I have much to do.

Let me know that I am still needed,

By opening your heart and leaving me some room.

Happy Holidays...

Santa and His Elves John, Sylvia, Julian, Esther and Sam.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Never Stop Barking



My New Philosophy on Life....

NEVER STOP BARKING.

Because if you do,

They may see you , 

As just another Old Goat
with nothing to say....


Monday, November 14, 2016

One Definition of Retirement

It's that time meant to do all those things you've dreamed of doing .


Such as:


As a Photographer, that perfect sunset..



For the Treasure Hunter in You, Finding the
Ultimate Diamond..



For the Explorer In You... Finding the Giant Dodo Bird
 that you know is still out there somewhere.



Then Back Home to a nice Easy Chair,
and some good drugs to take the pains away...

Saturday, November 12, 2016

My Sunday Morning Pew


On this Sunday Morning..

No Hymms need sung,


No sermons need done.

We'll sit and talk awhile


 He will tell me how much he loves me 

through my eyes and my heart.

And I will watch and listen...

For what he says and shows me, I know is true...

Lord, Show me your way.

Old Friends and New Friends

Over the last 2 days I have been honored to work on a project regarding a story about 8 Fine Men who have been friends for over 45 years.
Their becoming friends happened while serving aboard the USS Orleck stationed off the coast of Vietnam between the years of 1968 to 1971.
These Men were all members in the same division that manned the Gun Mounts and Fire Control Weapon Systems on the Destroyer Escort which earned the title of the Grey Ghost of the Vietnam Coast where they became steadfast friends while doing their Patriotic Active Service to their Country and continue to be friends today.
They recently learned the plight of the current conditions of the Orleck and they came together with their wives from all over the country to help in whatever way they could.

Spending 2 days brainstorming with the volunteers that now manage the upkeep and daily running of their ship which has now become a Naval Museum they helped in more than one way to help give hope for the life of this fine ship.
They were given their just recognition during the Veterans Day Celebration Friday which was shared with many local members of our community. 





To these fine Men and their Wives we are proud to thank them and honor them for their service and we shout and wave to our new found shipmates as we all go our separate ways.
From myself... Gentlemen... It's been an honor.... sitting, talking with you, sharing tales ad learning more about what it was like at sea a decade before I had the privilege and I as I know many other do. 
I Thank You..  It has been an education. Until next time, "Fair Winds and Following Seas." and God Bless the United State of America.

John C. Glass
Photo Journalist and proud Veteran of the United States Navy
Post Note: The situation regarding the future of the USS Orleck is still one of concern. The months ahead will depend on what we are able to do to gain an upper hand on the financial difficulties of keeping her with us in Lake Charles Louisiana.
Contributions by both donations or by visiting the ship with family and friends allows us to keep her anchored here with us... Spread the Word.. Let others know of the Great Sample of what the U.S. Navy has and still does for our great land.  Come and see us on our Facebook Page for additional information and upcoming events. 









Thursday, November 10, 2016

From Now On,,, I'm just along for the ride.

As long as it stays on it's own axis... 

I think our world will survive...

Beyond that,  from now on... 

I'll just be here for the rides. 

I've got a pocket full of quarters that should take me to 
the end of my days whenever that will be... 

So... from now on I'll tighten my seat belt a little tighter, lean back
and watch the world go by...

Because, beyond that,
from now on..

I'll just be here for the rides.

Johnny

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Our Train

November 9th, 2016

I, as all of us have just stepped onto a train that I hope will take us far.....

I hope that the type of fuel you plan on using to make this train continue is of high quality and does not become diluted to the point that it cannot keep the engine running.

I will go on this ride but I will not sit and just read a book. I will watch what is going by and every once in a while probably question if the ride starts switching tracks or starts going downhill.

I hope for all of us that our country will now be able to go forward instead of just sitting in a station waiting for an engineer to put their hands on the controls.

But I also hope that the engineer remembers what kind of train he is running and thinks for and about all the people who are riding on this train and is able to look far enough down the tracks and reacts in a positive manner so he doesn't lose control of our Train.

Because this is a very Big and Important Train and we all are depending on you to get us to where we need to go..

Congratulations Mr. Trump... Our Train is now in your hands...

John Glass
A United States of America Citizen

Monday, November 7, 2016

I Hope It's Not True...

Only 9 more days until our trip to Las Vegas then back to Austin for a couple of 3 days... 
Just hope that the planes are still flying, the banks have not all shut down, the power is still on and that our country is not in total chaos after tomorrow's election results..

Because if you listen to the news.. (which I stopped doing 5 days ago) you would think the world is about to come to an end... No matter who wins.... I'm afraid we're all going to lose, at least our pride as a Nation...

It use to be we were the one's looking at the others saying "Have they gone crazy?" Look at them making fools of themselves."

Kind of hard to keep the ole chin up when our leaders are embarrassing us in front of all the world to see.

For the last couple of weeks I've been looking at "Google Earth". I find it very relaxing, seeing things around our world from above.
 I've looked at other countries and other places and come to realize that maybe, just maybe there are other places where you can enjoy life outside our country. 
Has it really gotten that bad? That it's come to a point that we are so uncertain about our nation that we are considering others as a back up plan?
But then again... That's just my opinion...

Johnny
11/7/2016

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Why, When I Was Growing Up...

It's something that happens when you hit a time in your life, somewhere along the way when you start looking at the way "others" are acting and trying to warrant yourself by sharing how you would like to be judged on.

One of the most used excuses used is..

"Well when I was growing up"...

We taught to honor our Father and Mother wishes...

But you forget to mention that there were times when each of us looked and said... "NO.... I don't want to and won't do that.."

or.

"We were taught to not judge others"..

But we do.. by ridicule, rude remarks, bragging, comparing ourselves to others or refusing to accept the fact that others have their own opinions.

or..

"We were taught that it is not what you have that makes you a better person,  but by what you do."

But we don't,  by trying to keep up with the Jones',  bragging about the "New" whatever we bought, and flaunting your possession in front of others to try and impress them.

"We were taught that it is better to give then it is to receive"

But we don't, because we hold back when we see others who could use our help because it would or could possibly stifle our own wants, or be afraid how "others" would think of you if seen doing so. Or you say "they weren't there for me, why should I be there for them?"

Yes... you can try to warrant yourself by using the statement "Well, When I Was Growing Up."

But wait a minute.  At what stage in life do we get to take the label "Grown Up?"

Because in the real world, I need to be the 1st to admit that ... I'm still Growing Up... Because I still have faults I need to work on.

Johnny










Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Life's Journeys

I think your life should consist of many journeys.

 Some of them you take with those important in your life so you can enjoy them together.

Others,  taken on your own because you are the only one it concerns.

 But no matter what,  all journeys should be eventful, full of turns and curves along the way so you  learn from them.

What a waste of a good journey if you don't learn something from it.

A journey that is taken to just get to the end, is not a journey, it is a task.

It's like driving on a road that is straight with no curves, turns, hills or valleys.

After a while you just stare at the road ahead of you and don't notice what is all around you.

Me.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Trouble Looking For Trouble

When I was about 14 maybe 15 I was what, my Mom called "trouble looking for trouble".  Now you have to understand, it wasn't that I was a "bad" kid who was going out picking fights, tearing up things or being in-considerate to others, back then, you just didn't do that if you expected to see the light of the next day.  No, I was just real good at being able to get myself in a "predicament" all on my own. Which, 95 percent of the time I was, by myself.

What she was talking about was that if there was something out there that could go wrong, I was the one who could find it and it seemed that was just the way it was supposed to be.    I was the one who had no problem getting up early in the morning, many times even before the sun wasn't even a glow on the eastern horizon yet.  I would quietly slip out the backdoor with a rod and reel in hand and "take off". What this meant was that for the next few hours I could wander across the fields that lead me to the stock tanks and creek that were a couple of miles into the woods behind our house.

Now, that didn't mean that I went directly there or took the shortest route. I, was the one who was filled with curiosity and a questionable need to stick my nose where it shouldn't be stuck. I tried very hard to make certain that I explored every inch, foot and mile from point A to point B.  A hay barn which had just be filled with new hay or a new set of tire tracks on the dirt road that was rarely used or maybe a sound that I heard off to my left that I had never heard before.  Well, it was simple, I had to go find out who, what, when, where, why and if possible, how?

Which were the questions that popped into my head the day I looked up in the top of a Very Large Pecan Tree and noticed a Very Large Nest made of surely every twig, leaf, or usable item of nature that was available, to craftily built a nest in the fork of this tree's upper branches.  Now, who put that up there? Where did  it come from, it wasn't there the last time I walked down this path. What was in it, and of course why don't I just shinny up that tree and answer my own questions.

So, of course up I went.  Now forget the facts that this nest was probably a good 40 feet off the ground, in a tree that looked "un-climbable or that I was all alone if anything were to happen to me if I were to fall.  Those things didn't matter or I just wasn't "thinkin".

So up I go. Now at about the 20 foot level my confidence had grown regarding my climbing abilities.  Duh... of course, these first few feet were easy, great big branches with plenty of support.  But now the climbing was getting a little rougher and you would have thought I would say, "Johnny, slow down, pick wisely." Did I? of course not and it was at about the 26 foot level that the branch under my feet snapped sending me plummeting down, slowed down a little by the branches and limbs I had just mastered and bounce off of until I manage to find Mother Earth with a thud.

I lay there for a couple of minutes, trying to replace the air that had just been knock out of me. While lying, there I made my 2nd big mistake of the day.  I looked back up at the nest and said, to myself, "Your not going to let that stop you are you?  The answer. "Well, of course not."  Dumb answer, I mean a REALLY dumb answer, as I was soon to realize.

So, up I go again, making point at level the 20 foot level, to remind myself, OK STUPID, slow down, which I did. Then, at about the 35 foot level that it hit me.. Johnny, what if there is something alive in that nest? Hmmmm... Ahhh... and I carefully pulled out the pocket knife which I always carried in my bluejeans pocket. Opening it, and clamping it between my teeth so I could have both hands still free to climb I looked up and at the same time grabbed the fork of the tree in which the nest had been built in.

That was at that precise moment when the raccoon (who) which had built the nest, stood up and looked down at me and in a split second, answered the rest of my questions which had got me up there in the first place.  We both kind of froze in time for probably about 5 seconds but what seemed to me was an eternity.  Then the raccoon stepped out of her nest and onto my shoulder, grabbing which I keenly remember, grabbing a raccoon's handful of my hair to better balance herself.

I very quickly proceeded to try to shred all of the skin off the inner sides of my arms since all I was wearing above the blue jeans was a T-Shirt. That was when I came to the only smart idea I had that day I think.  Jump!

As I hurled myself off the branch, while she simply stepped off my shoulder onto the branch where I had just been.  I can remember her looking down at me as I fell with the look and I swear a grin of someone saying "Dummy".  I bounced my way down through the limbs and branches(again) to about the 15 foot level and was fortunate to grab a larger limb stopping my fall.

I lay there clinging to the branch and I whispered a prayer of thanks to the one other, who witnessed all of this and who was probably shaking his head at me from high above. it was at that moment that the raccoon proceeded to try and show me how a living animal can jump from 30 feet off the ground and live through it.  She hit the ground with a heavy thud, kind of like the one that had been done by me just a few minutes earlier.  She lay there for some time, then rose, looked over her shoulder at me, and scampered off into the underbrush to be seen no more... Thank God.... for the second time..

I climbed down the rest of the way and sat against the trunk of the tree easily answering the 3rd to last question of the day.  "Well, bet you won't do that again will you?  It was also then that I noticed the pocket knife lying on the ground a few feet away.  Answering the 2nd to last question of the day. "Why didn't you use the knife up there?" Answer.  Because a knife will not stay between you  teeth, 
while you are screaming at the top of you lungs because a full grown female raccoon (I'm not sure, it was a female, I didn't have time to check, just seem so, your know, how woman have that look in it's eyes when you do something stupid) steps onto your shoulder and grabs your hair, for balance.

After about 2 hours of stopping every 100 yards to pray that I not bleed to death,  I made it home.  It is there where I had to answer the last question of the day and that was from my Mother asking me as I walked through the back door. "Did you have fun today Johnny?"

My answer,  "Yes", as kissed her on the check and stumbled my way down the hallway to my room.

Johnny
11/1/2016











Monday, October 31, 2016

Knowledge VS Perception


Sometimes...

How you look at a object will determine what you see.

But Sometimes...

What you see, is not, what you think you see.

Because Sometimes...

What is there, right in front of you, is something totally different then what it seems to be.

But Sometimes...

A little more knowledge, about what your seeing,  helps to understand what it is you see.

Because... Believe it or not, these are all the same one.

Thus the power of Knowledge..

Or... the lack of....

So... Tell me... What is it you think you see in this photo?  Share with me in the comments section and then I will share with you what it is.

Also.. Stare at the  Circles and you may think you see them  move...

Smile...



Saturday, October 29, 2016

Saving The Bells

The bells actually did not start out together.


The larger one I found when I stopped to take a shot of a beautiful sunset. It was on a field fence line along an old country road, hanging silently on the 2nd strand. It had no clanger, so all it could do was sway in the wind.  I thought at the time that it was not getting it's just deserts, so I rescued it.


The smaller one was found hanging in a tree back behind a house that I lived in once.  It's ring was being muffled by the leaves that had grown to close to it.  Again, it looked to me that it wanted to be heard and noticed, so I adopted it also.


The 2 have individually hung in various places in my home, until about six months ago while sitting on my patio, did I realized that they were meant to be together.


The small one, now shares the joy of being heard again with the large one.


Some things are just meant to be...

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Closure


Now... I'm going to tell you a story...   It has several events in it that will make you stop and say... "Johnny's making this up."  I promise you I am not. I will place my hand on a Bible and swear to it.

When I was growing up there lived an old Negro man who lived alone in a run down farmhouse just behind our house on the property adjacent to us... He lived a very simple life and kept mostly to himself...  As a young teenager I would pass through his field, with his permission, on my way back to a creek that flowed about a mile back in the woods to go fishing.

 On the way back  from the creek, I would find him sitting on his front porch listening to a old radio that sat just inside the window in his bedroom.  For him to hear it, it was pretty loud.  Sometimes I would stop and show him what I caught or just sit on the porch with him and watch the sun set, then head on to our house that was maybe 200 yards away, still being able to hear his radio.. Right after dark the radio would be turned off and he would go to bed with his house in complete darkness.


A couple of years later, I came home from work late one evening about 10 pm... As I got out of my car I notice that I could hear his radio still playing, which was odd for that time of night.  I glanced towards his house and also noted that it was deep dark with no lights on.  I went in and shared with my father that the old man's radio was still playing that late at night.  He too though that was odd and asked me to go with him to check on the old man...

It was a Full Moon night so there was no need for flashlights so we walked down his road. Approaching the porch, we could make out him sitting, leaning back against the old bench he usually sat on. Dad called out to him but there was no answer. It looked as though he had probably had a heart attack and tried to get up, sliding off the bench and coming to rest leaning back against the bench.  He had died from the attack.  Dad covered him with a sheet from inside and called the Sheriff Department and we sat and waited for them. I sat and thought about our talks and how it always seemed he let me do most of the talking, while he had just sat looking out over his land and listening to me rattle on.

I moved from home soon afterwards, right after high school, I stepped into a marriage which gave me my first child.  After 3 years, my wife and I started drifting apart, which occurs sometimes when couples marry very young.

During the last month of my marriage I started to have a dream.  In the dream, I would be coming home to my parents house just I had years before.  As I got out of my car I would see the old man standing at the fence line that stood between our properties.  I would walk over and talk with him and he would ask me about my day.  Then he would look over my shoulder towards my parent's house and ask how my wife and daughter was? I would turn to look to see what he was looking at and as I did I would hear him say. "Go to your them,  Johnny, they needs you." I would turn back to ask him what he meant and he would no longer be standing there.  It was only then in the dream would I realize that he was not there because he had died years ago, and I would wake up from the dream.

My wife and I separated but I had custody of my Daughter.  We battled through court  over the custody of my daughter and near the final hearing over custody I had the same dream again about the old man.  But this time when he looked towards my parents house, he asked me about my Daughter? Again I looked away towards their house and he told me "Go to her Johnny, your daughter, she needs you." Turning around, he again would be gone and I would realize that he had passed away. I lost custody of my daughter, and fought with myself for the next 2 years over losing her.

Then, I again had the dream. but this time the old man asked "How I was doing?" and I would wake up from the nightmare not letting myself turn back around to see him gone again. It was then that
I lost myself  for 2 years into a world of denial, self-hate and total lack of self-respect and tried to carry the whole world down with me.

Fortunately I found my way into the Navy and regained control of my life and my future.

So.  hmmm..

38 years later, I sat down in a dentist chair here in Lake Charles, La.  On the wall of the room hung a painting and when I looked at it, I realized that it was a painting of the old man's home almost exactly.  The only difference was that the tree in the painting had Spanish Moss hanging from it which we had none in Central Texas.

I sat and stared at the painting and then noticed that it was signed and dated but I could not tell the whole date from the distance which I sat.  But I could see that it was 197_.  I could not force myself to get up and look and only when the Dentist came in did I dare ask him to tell me what the year of the painting was.  He walked over and squinted then said... "I think it's 1978."

The year that the Old Man had come to see me along the fence line for the last time was 1978....

It makes you wonder...

But I'm good with it.  Because now,  I think I have total closure and I don't have to worry about ever seeing the Old Man again and now when I think of him I can smile, and remember him as a the friend he once had been, a long time ago.

Johnny






Sunday, October 23, 2016

All Still The Same

Different Colors, 

Different Shapes

Different Designs.


But still called the same.... 

Well, come to think of it....

Even though we are..

Different Colors,

Different Shapes, 

Different Designs,

Are we not..... still the same?



Photo and Thought by

Me....

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Time Sharers






Real early in the morning.  

When the world is standing still.

Even before the first Mocking Bird.   

There are just a few stirring.  

The newspaper boy.

A train in the distance.

The squirrel in the tree.

And me.  

Friday, October 21, 2016

Maybe. Just Maybe.... Someday



Some.... will see a raindrop under the leaf....

Others... will see a hole within the leaf. 

And maybe.....

They will share what they think they see....

And possibly... both will look again....

And see what the other saw...

Due to the 'Power of Perception and Suggestion"

Maybe..... Just Maybe... Someday



Thought... and Photo by John Glass

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Until The Next Roundup

For me, gone are the days of roundups, ranching, farming

and living the life of a country boy...



But... that doesn't mean that the

spirit, is not still within me.

Nor that I can't remember those times and re-live them

through the lens of my camera,

my style of living

and having those things around to help remind me.




So...




I have changed the saddle that I now ride on.

I have chosen different ways to enjoy and be proud of the way I was raised.

Ways, that will allow me to still keep that of what I had still have within me.

That allows me to keep those distant times fresh in my mind...


So...

Until the next roundup...

Johnny
10/20/16

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Thanks For Checking On Me

Yesterday morning I went to go outside and found this on my glass door...

The first thing I thought was "oh.... this is bad sign" and expected to walk out and find a bird lying dead on the door stoop.  But there was none...

So I then thought.  "Lucky Bird"...  

But a few minutes later I returned inside, sat down in  my garden room and cut my radio on...

Out of it's speakers came Willie Nelson's song "Angel Flying To Close To The Ground."

I looked back at the wing imprint that was still on the door.

So then I thought "Lucky Me"

I said a prayer and thanked him for sending one to check on me....

You see.... I had just had surgery the previous day...

But...Also....that only goes to prove that even Guardian Angels have to watch where their going..

Thank ya Lord

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Can I Have Your Autographs Please?



I had to have some surgery done... no big deal.. but no matter what I hate hospitals.

This... is my surgery cap....

Just as they had me prepped and ready to start I asked for one thing...

That my surgery cap be signed by everyone who was in the operating room.. 

There was dead silence.

Then laughter, someone said it was the 1st time any of them had been asked for their autographs .

I said "Well ya'll are all  professionals aren't you?" Just as they were putting me to sleep. 

 And just as I slipped away I added  "Besides this way,  if anything goes wrong.. 

I'll know who to hunt down...😳😳😳😳

Mom's Button Box


There is a story about these two cake tins.

 The older one in the back was my mother's 'button box'.

 It is the first thing I actually remember of my childhood.

 I can remember running to get it for Mom and helping to find a matching button needed for the moment.

 It was the one thing I asked for when she passed.

The newer brighter identical box I found in the back corner of a thrift shop 2 weeks after she passed.

It seemed a message from her, 'Hold onto the Past but make the future your own.

They sit in my little curio cabinet now together.

I have never taken one single button from her box..

Just wouldn't seem right.

The new box, well the new box holds things that are important to me.

If others were to look inside they would have no idea why I've kept them..

But that doesn't really matter, there are only 2 people who need to know...

Mom and I,

And I know she does..


An Eye Opening Event

I can remember...

Back in the 8th grade we changed schools. Not because my family had moved but that there had been an election by our parents and it was decided to change to becoming a part of Del Valle I.S.D. instead of Manor I.S.D.

Now for most kids, this would not be a big deal.  But for about 20 "country" kids being thrust out into the BIG world, this, was a earth shaking event.  I can remember the day so vividly. Riding the bus across the river valley road all the way over to the Del Valle Jr/Sr campus. There was the usual screaming and holler and bantering of the 1st day of school. But then it slowly died and then dead silence as we approached the new school.

There were so many buses spewing hundreds of kids out onto the lawn of this strange and gigantic new world. I and my friends made our way to the doors, with the promise that we would stay close to each other, As we entered, and standing in line for a considerable time,  we met for the first time the School Secretary. A little old lady with blue hair and little bitty fake pearls on the edge of her glasses sitting  at a table blocking the way into the school in the main hallway.

 "What's your Name? she seemed to scream at you trying to be heard over the sounds of 300 kids seeing each other for the first time in 3 months. She shuffled through a never-ending stack of small 6 inch by 2 inch cards...

With name given she found yours.. stuffed it into you hand and giving you the "evil eye" shouted "GO TO THE GYM" and DON'T YOU DARE LOSE THAT SCHEDULE. .

We stepped into the stream of kids, dumbfounded and shuffling our feet trying to make sure we didn't fall because it was obvious you would be trampled by the flow of bodys that reminded me of salmon swimming upstream. Suddenly a sharp and very loud bell went off for about 10 seconds.  Thinking that surely there was a fire or a bomb was about to hit the school we allowed ourselves to become a part of the  human herd  which lead us to the gym.

Once there, we found a place on the wooden bleachers that ran up the walls of the huge room.  Kids were screaming and holler, Teachers were screaming and hollering and some man was standing on stage slapping a microphone say TESTING.... TESTING... TESTING... with the device producing a high pitch scream through several speakers that were mounted on the walls of the room.

Behind him on the stage sat a row of adults, all in suits or nice dresses sitting quietly, hands in their laps and looking down, shaking their heads as if maybe someone had just died.  We were soon to learn that these were the Lead Teachers for each grade...

 All except two,  there was a man and woman dressed in shorts, a Jersey with the schools name across the chest, tennis shoes and a large silver whistle hanging from their necks They stood over in the corner, he pitching a football up into the air, just staring out at the crowd  of what we were soon to find out he called "The Hooligans", and she, staring down at a clipboard she held. erasing then writing, erasing then writing all the while talking to him which it was obvious he was not listening to a word she said.  The Coaches.... We had never had Coaches before...

As we looked at the small card we had been given it was only then that we realized that we were to be separated for first time in our years in school.   PANIC, was the only word that would fit the description of how we felt at that moment. The 6 of us had been together in the same classroom, sitting beside each other for 7 years... Wait?  What do you mean? We're not going to be together, and a cold chill ran down my spine.

The man behind the microphone tried to take control of crowd by calling out over the roar of the laughing, screaming and hooting of the students. Finally, he gave up and turned to the coaches who both smiled, stepped forward and placing their hands on their hips and their whistles between their lips blasted a high pitched scream which immediately brought over half of the crowds hands over their ears including those sitting in the chairs on the stage.

This shrill note screamed from the whistles lasting for at least a minute until there was total silence through out the large domed room.   They then stepped back but left the whistles between their teeth as if to say. "Do we have to do that again?"

The principal re-adjusted the microphone stand and with a light tap on the mike thanked the coaches for their help.  He then introduced himself, welcoming everyone back to school and then went into what he was hoping to achieve over the coming school year, He then proceeded to explain what the rest of this 1st day would consist of.  At the end, he then explained that he would introduce each of the faculty, what room they would be in and with their introduction if your schedule showed you going into that Teacher's class for 1st period for you to get up and quietly follow them to the classroom.

The first teacher was called and she raised her hand for everyone to see where she was and slowly started heading for the exit door.  That classroom's students worked their way out of the bleachers and followed her out waving at their friends as the past by them.

This continued for 2 more Teachers, but at the same time we heard a buzz start among the remaining students in the room.  On the calling of the 4th Teacher, it seemed as though almost all of the students had decided that now was the time to hit the hallways.  There was a rush for the exit doors in all directions with the Principal screaming for everyone to stay seated while everyone ignored him and for the next hour the students of Del Valle Jr. High School roamed the halls totally ignoring the bells ringing, the teachers screaming, the janitors standing over in a corner giggling, The Principal and his office staff tried herding kids into rooms who would turn around and leave as soon as they headed back into the hallway to gather up another group.  I must admit, we also took advantage of the moment to help each other find our rooms, promising to meet for lunch.

My 1st period class was labeled Physical Education ---- Field House... I had been fortunate to have four older brothers who had gone to Del Valle before me.  So I knew where the Field House was located and after about 30 minutes of helping my friends find their rooms I headed my way to behind the building and out to the additional gym and dressing rooms that was located out near the football stadium.  As I approached the door, there stood that Coach that had been on the stage earlier.. He looked down at me and just said.. "Your a Glass, I've had all of your older brothers and I'm sure I can expect the same type of behavior that they shown me in the past." I offered my hand and shook his saying "Coach, you have nothing to worry about from me."

Boy, was he in for a big surprise, because as he would soon find out... in those days I was nothing like my Big Brothers....

Smile..

Johnny
10/18/16





Haunts and Tales from the Cajun Bayous

The French Cajuns of Louisiana are a Culture that live strongly on their history and folklore.  One of these are the Legend of the Rougarou. 
 A Rougarou is a beast that prowls the night throughout the swamps and bayous of Louisiana. 
The Shape-Changer, the story goes, is that of a poor soul who without control shifts into a creature of a half-man, half-wolf beast.  
Depending on the imagination and skills of the Story Teller, it occurs due to many different things.  1) That the person has strayed to the "dark-side". 2) That the person himself was attacked and bitten by another Rougarou or 3) That it is a person who has been put under the hex of a local ju-ju witch that also haunts the same lands, 
This story is shared many times especially around the coming of Halloween. Which is strongly enjoyed by the Cajun Culture and the story is told to the children just before they go out to scream and holler and created mischief on the Night of the Haunting setting the seed in their mind that there is danger in this night if you don't watch out for yourself.  
So, this is what I share with my little ones and others who decide to prowl the night on that evening.

Children and All People Who choose to enjoy this night.... Beware the Rougarou..
If by chance...
You find yourself in the Land of the Rougarou just before the Full Moon rises in sky over our swamps and Bayous,  when and the fog hangs low to the ground,  there are a couple of things you need to remember to do.
The First is... If you are a smart person... you will not wander into the Darkness of the Cajun Swamps and Bayous of Louisiana alone, because that is the person who the Rougarou is looking for.
The Second is.. If you are a smart person, is to glance over your shoulder every once in a while just in case you have been chosen by the Rougarou,.because no matter what if, you are chosen by the Rougarou, you will not see the light of the next day...
So heed my warning... trust me, I too have heard the howl of the Rougarou and cold chill went down my spine....
Just please be careful, If by chance....
You find yourself in the Land of the Rougarou on this Halloween Night...

Johnny