Grey Green Gospel: So I was in my junior year of high school. "I can smile about it now, but at the time it was terrible. I am 5'6, at that juncture of my life I weighed in at around 190 pounds of no, not muscle, immense lardage. I remember having to get countless X-rays of my back at the hospital on post. I was told to take off all my clothes and put on the paper hospital dress. She looked at me for a moment. She had hair the color of field mice and thin, colorless lips. She took a small breath, and said, officiously, she had solved her quandry, "oh, and take off your bra". Blushing, again, but I was never a stranger to the gender bender for as long as I can remember. I was in a Waffle House, with some friends, on some trip or the other in college, and I ordered something whacked of course, and the waitress, with the most serious face asked me, "when is it due, darling?" N, a friend, N and I were pulled over on our way back from Savannah. I took the Ft. Stewart route home. A longer, but peaceful route to Hinesville. Miles and miles of pines, deer, silence, and occasional distant gunshots. Wargames, or the shooting range, hunters at Holbrook pond. I would always think of the alligators that would swallow little yippy dogs that would stand on the shore and yelp until swallowed whole by an irritable gator. Yes, we were a pretty white trash family with our flip-flops and plastic chairs at Holbrook pond. Fishing in the summer. Me, wandering mostly, but not too far, I was too afraid of bugs. I collected pine rosin and flowers. I brought them back from my timid journey of circles to the tackleboxes and earthworms surrounding my familial unit. My father and I burned the rosin to keep the bugs away. The mosquitoes were just dreadful. The unit was united by scabs or bites, too. See, one would get so many bites, that one would scratch while sleeping. Ok, the scabs, were really just on me and my brother. Myself, in my sleep, but my brother, yikes, never could leave his alone. This was 4th grade for me and I had no friends, the unit was fresh from a 3-year stint in Germany. My brother continued to pick. Rubbing his day old socks together, head propped sideways on a footstool inches from the television, munching on multiple fried bologna sandwiches, picking, picking every new crust that quickly clotted all over his obese legs and arms. Me, I shaved my entire body from head to toe, starved myself and got freakishly thin again until 5th grade. I quickly blew up like a lead balloon again. Puberty had started, but my voice had not changed. Again, no friends, and fearful of the unit, I withdrew to myself. Screwing the pillow in my second floor bedroom in Bryan Village with the door open, family rule, and eating, eating and eating, because at least I was not thinking about what was wrong me that I did not have anyone to talk to, or rather, I did not think that I could talk to anyone about it because I wanted to flee from the unit for as long as I can remember. And, yes, gentle reader, they were nice, I guess, too, the unit, I mean. Maybe I was just a snob. Well, I say that and then, I remember, nice, yes, but suffocating, and we were all expected to be terribly pleasant. Or maybe, I was, because, I felt guilty, that I wanted to distance myself so badly from my family. I guess I got what I secretly wished for you might say, gentle reader. You are right. I almost learned how to ride a bike before we transferred from the one friend that I usually found at whichever place we were posted. Older, even, more bashful about it later, I decline offers to learn from the unit because, again, no friends, just kids from school that would beat me up on the way home. Must tell you more so soon. But I must jet for now gentle reader. I have to work at 6:30. Jeez. Ca va. Oh, and happy eve of Mother's day eve to all of my fellow mothers of the revolution. Peace be with you all tonight and forever. No more deliveries, but you can pick something up, late day. Peace out.