In the Beginning
Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts
Mark Kramer, City Hall, Dishwashing, Bicycling
Roy Martin Junior High
Learning to Fly
My Father's Death
Las Vegas High School (1978-79)
Bishop Gorman (Sept ‘79- May ‘81)
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
A Major in Nothing and Everything
Back to UNLV
Iowa State University
My Mother’s Murder
In the Beginning
I was born before the personal computer was invented and grew up without a CD player, cable television, a cell phone, a dishwasher, or an iPod. There was no e-mail, no internet, and no websites. We didn’t have instant messaging or remote controls. If we wanted to turn on the TV or change a channel, we had to get up, walk over to the TV and flip a switch. In other words, I lived in the Dark Ages.
I remember our first TV was black and white. We didn’t get a color TV until about 1974. And since their was no cable, no DVD, and no videocassette recorders, you watched whatever was on TV. And since there was no Tivo, you had to watch the commercials to , or leave the room. Remember, without a remote you couldn’t turn the sound down. At the end of the night, or early in the morning, when you turned the TV on, you’d either see static or a test pattern.
We listened to 45 rpm records that held one song on each side, but I also had an 8-track tape player, a record player with one speaker, and a cassette recorder that I used to record my voice on. My mom once read a story on a tape so I could listen to it when she was gone. The Sony Walkman was the iPod of it’s day – Music on cassette. Juke Box full of 45 records.
The year was 1963, John Glen had orbited the earth one year before, and 6 years later humans walked on the moon. No dishwasher. Washed and dried by hand. No Microwave. LED handheld calculators came first ($500 $2,000 in today’s money). Then LED quartz wrist watches. 6th grade teacher first one to have one watches came ($100, $400 in today’s money). After price fell I got one. Used so much power, you had to push a button to see time. Then LCD came and I got those. I also got a “digital” watch, instead of numbers lighting up, the clock face turned numbers instead of hands!
Banks were limited on how much interest they could pay, so they would give you a toaster or blender if you opened a new account with them. My first stereo was from mom and dad opening a bank account. Mom was in charge of finances
Although we had a washing machine, we didn’t have a dryer and my mom hung the wet clothes out on a clothsline with clothspins. When I got older, I hung them out myself. When my fiancée, Angela, lived with us, she hung out the clothes too. In fact, when I sold the house in 2006, it still had no dryer and no cable or satellite dish.
No home computer, my mom typed my school reports on manual typewriter.
My Mother and Grandmother
My mom grew up in the Darker Ages. There was no electricity, so there was no washing machine, no refrigerator, and no vacuum cleaner. There were no bathrooms, instead when you needed to go, you went outside to the outhouse. When the pit was full, you had to dig another one. In a big family like my moms, that meant every three or four years. Baths were weekly events. And since you had to go outside to get the water and heat it on a stove, you used the water that was already there, even if eight other people had been in it before you, unless you wanted to pump out the water, carry it in, and heat it up yourself. My uncle Owen was the ninth child, so sometimes eight other people had used the water before him.
On the farm there were chickens, pigs, cows, and turkeys. So eggs and milk were fresh -- just help yourself -- and any meat you wanted, you had to find an animal and kill it yourself, or find your brother to do it for you, since your dad was busy plowing the fields.
There were no antibiotics, so up to ¼ of children died before they turned 4. Many women died in childbirth.
Food was kept in an icebox, or in a container near the river and dried food was kept in the cellar. Washing was done with a washboard and hung out on the line. Baths were
And my grandmother lived in the Darkest Age of all – before cars and airplanes. School was in a one room school house. The most advanced technology of those times was the steam locomotive. Used a sewing machine with a foot treadle to make it sew.
Didn’t drink or smoke, Mom 42 dad 50, thought I was adopted. Dad married before. Neither told me much about past. Dad told me nothing about it.
Church: Methodist (asked about evolution because Bible told a different story)
Discipline: Dad used a belt, mom used a lint brush. She remembers spanking me when I ran into the street without looking. After that we got a fence. Later I was grounded, I don’t remember time-outs.
I only remember going out to the Aku Aku restaurant at the Stardust. We sometimes went to Circus Circus. Acrobats, elephants, hi wire acts.
Chores – calendar with stars
Another chore was raking leaves – then jumping in them
Mom would make bed – owen and Helen would make beds each morning.
I explained to mom the illogic of making a bed you were going to sleep in again
Time with Dad
Walking up to downtown, playing catch, watching TV, shooting with Dad, fishing
Checkers with Dad
Although I wouldn’t describe him as a distant father, I didn’t see him much. He was gone before I woke up, went to bed before me, and spent his weekends shooting and weekend evenings, cleaning guns or out on the town. He loved to shoot and he was very good at it. Many awards and trophy’s. I never found it that interesting. I thought fishing was boring too
His First job was with Pan Am, then at the Nevada Test Site. He had to leave about 4:30 am the bus ride took about 90 minutes. Never learned what he did there. But I think it was still with Pan Am because he continued to fly at a discount. After that he worked downtown Strip as a carpenter job with union would bicycle to union hall – I think that’s when he had the accident, although he was retired.
On weekends he would go through the garbage cans behind the apartment buildings, collecting aluminum cans, and my job was to use a sledge hammer to squish them flat so they didn’t take up as much space.
Dad gave me Battle Born 1862-1962 silver commemorative pistols for Nevada Statehood
Time with Mom
Her hobbies: knitting, gardening, swimming, cooking and canning
Television – Rose Bowl Parade, Masterpiece Theater, Jeopardy, Game Shows in the morning
I spent a lot of time with my mother; that was one of the reasons my dad wanted me to go to nursery school – break those apron strings.
She loved to swim and would take me to the YMCA for swimming lessons. The first lessons were around the time of kindergarten, but after that, she would take me. I’d still go with her into the women’s locker room until one night a woman screamed. After that I had to use the lonely men’s locker room.
After swimming I could go the vending machine and get a Whole Moon Pie
After my allergy shots mom would give me a slurpee
Favorite Breakfast Cereal: Captain Crunch and Apple Jacks, Fruit Loops, Trix (are for kids)
Explains my trips to the dentist – also Vegas didn’t floridate its water until the 90’s or later
I liked to chew ice.
Facts of Life: 4th grade. Girls went to a special class nothing for boys. In sixth grade, boys and girls saw a movie together on childbirth, messy and lots of blood.
When I asked where babies come from mom gave me a book.
Cub Scouts – My mom was a den mother
Mom took me to shoe store “buster brown” custom shoes, my feet turned in.
Took me for Allergy shots – Slurpee reward
Took me Swimming at YMCA
The More the Merrier? Foster Children
My mom saved everything
Spent time throwing out stuff, before and after she died. She sat out next to trash crying and said because she was old, broken and useless, the trashmen should take her away too.
Later she wrote a thank you note to me
My Birthday Parties
I always celebrated at home alone. For some reason, I never had friends over, except once. But my mom went all out on cakes and hiding presents with notes & cards that clued me to the next one. Until I was 15 I would get the same number of presents as I was years. I think she gave me 15 pennies on my 15th birthday, and I knew times had changed.
My Mom invested in Penn Sq. Mutual Fund for me
Mom and Dad loved to collect plates. They thought that was a better investment than stocks and bonds, I remember mom telling me that my dad had once had a bad experience. And the 70’s the stock market wasn’t performing well. I still remember when the Dow Jones went above 1000, then fell below and several more years went by before it made it past 1,000 again
I have a vague memory of my parent’s paying off the house. I think I was around 10. So they much have had a 10 year mortgage.
'74 - Chevrolet (Bonneville)
Dad gives mom's car away to his new "friend"
'75?- Rainbow vacuum cleaner
There weren’t wasteful of money, but they were’nt very smart when they did spend. They were won over by a door to door vacuum cleaner salesman who sold them a Rainbow for $200 – maybe $800 today, it used water, said it was an air cleaner too – but they didn’t realize it would be too loud.
Also the car dealer for new GM Pontiac Brougham Gave away Mom’s car, it was a collector’s car I think it was her first car. She was angry. He thought he;d made a new best friend, but after he bought it, no friendship.
Carousel Nursery – Fantasy Park – Locomotive, Jet fighter, Fingerpainting
Discipline, Belt, hairbrush – Mom did it for running out in the street – we got a fence
Short Family Vacations
Hoover Dam – I even bicycled there once or twice
Mt. Charleston picnics and Hikes
Cedar City, Utah
Bryce Canyon, Cedar Breaks
Lake Mead, Fishing with Dad
Long Family Vacations Every Summer
Valley of Fire
Glacier National Park – going to the Sun Road, Banff
First horse ride
Dinosaur National Monument
Pygmy Forest, Oregon
Jerry’s Jet Boats, Oregon
Skunk Train, California
2005 was a bad year for the Worstell clan The lives of three siblings ended.
Duane – brain cancer,
James – prostate Cancer,
Edith – Alzheimers,
Dorothy – murder
2006 – An Arkansas Memorial for My Mother
2007 – Owen and Helen come to Maryland
A House in Las Vegas
Although I was born in Phoenix, Arizona and lived there for two months. I obviously remember nothing about it.
What Can you Do With a Door?
My Room - Yellow is a Beautiful Color But the Moon is Even Better
"Pastel flesh" was the color of my room (I read it off the paint can). Can you imagine what color that is? It is as awful as it sounds. And I wanted my room to be a different color, and since my favorite color was yellow, that’s what I picked – lemon yellow, sunshine yellow. A bright beautiful yellow. I even started to draw the lines on the wall for the deep purple racing stripes. I was very happy and put a second coat of it on several years later. But when I saw the moonscape wall paper, I knew what was next. Yellow on the moon? Uh, uh. So the other three walls became white.
Peter Max Calendar
1976 – 80 I became interested in energy efficiency and passive solar design and designed a greenhouse for mom (Our next door neighbors, the Stevenson’s had bought one from a kit and my dad had helped them build it). It would turn the patio into a greenhouse with passive solar for the winter. But my mom was never interested in spending money to do anything to change the house, even though the patio sloped the wrong way. Whenever it rained, she would have to sweep the water off toward the yard. My dad built the patio cover but it always leaked.
We didn’t live in the best of neighborhoods – apartments behind us overlooking the yard. My dad would board up the windows before our long vacations and later had bars put on both bathroom windows. After he died, our house had a break in – VCR stolen. Mom had a break in 2003?
Too bad I didn’t like fresh fruit or vegetables
We had a beautiful big apricot tree in back yard – so many apricots mom had to give them away, didn’t like apricots then, but love them now! Worms killed tree in the 80’s
Mom and dad created an orchard of nine Dwarf Fruit trees – did a good sprinkler system of PVC pipe
-- Apple, Nectarine, Peach, plum, Pear
Mom grew Asparagus, Tomato, corn, peas, strawberries (delicious on Corn Flakes), eggplant,
Spinach, lettuce, cabbage. Amazing she could grow so much in Las Vegas, the desert isn’t very hospitable.
Annual flowers in front yard lots of bulbs too
Didn’t like tomatoes either, and my mom grew those.
Salad Dressing w/ home made vinegar dressing, only discovered other kinds of salad dressings existed in Hobbes, NM with Russ and sailplane
After Dad died, She would walk to Burger King, or Carl’s Juniors for lunch on Saturdays and bring back Bacon Burgers.
I loved BLT too
Lunch at School – Balogna Sandwich, webers white bread, had to walk to special store
Learned about wheat bread from Ian – taste good.
Peanut Butter & Jelly or Macaroni and Cheese?
BBQ Steaks and Charcoal starting fires. Gave up eating meat after dad Died
Cottage cheese and fruit cocktail
I’m now an IQ vegetarian – No whales, dolphins, pigs or other smart animals, but I’ll eat cats, fish, chicken and turkey. Reluctantly eat beef
-- TV Dinners --
Walter Cronkite, Lawrence Welk, Ponderosa, High Chaparral, When I got older, I had to leave when Lawrence Welk came on.
I would watch Hogan’s Heros snuggled in Dad’s Arms, watch football that way.
Football with Dad and Mark
Favorite Team was the Minnesota Vikings because they had my two favorite colors Purple and Yellow. Mark’s favorite team was the Miami Dolphins (Orange and Turquoise) but he liked them because they were a good team and beat Vikings in the Superbowl.
First TV video games, (I still have mine)
Mark Kramer – hand held video game, broke it and had to buy him another (I still have old one)
To Cheap to pay a quarter for Pong and Pac Man
When I Grow Up, I Want to be………
I always knew what I wanted to be when I grew up. But it changed every year. In my earliest years, I wanted to be a dinosaur; a little later, I wanted to be a soldier, then a clown. By 4th grade, I planned to be an architect and drew designs for underwater houses. By junior high and the first years of high school, I planned to be a pilot, took sail plane lessons, learned how to parachute and once stayed in the air for five hours and soared to 16,000 feet.
In the last two years of high school and the first year of college, I was going to be a computer designer and electrical engineer. I built a chess computer. Learned BASIC and assembly language and then built a real micro computer with 64 K of memory and a double-density floppy disk drive that could hold 180 K I also built a 9-pin dot matrix printer, a black & white TV monitor, and purchased a modem that could connect through the phone lines at 300 baud (bits per second).
-- Taking Care, and Finishing Off, Small Animals --
My first family pet was Cindy, a Dachshund, but I also remember having, and killing – well, they died, but I don’t know how responsible I was – a horny toad, a gerbil, a red-eared turtle, some silk moths, a goldfish or two, and an ant farm. My mother took care of cleaning the aquarium, but did a good job feeding them. However, I purposely fried, tortured, and killed, with my bare hands or a magnifying glass, ants, grasshoppers, and cicadas. I also hunted with a BB gun and killed English sparrows that ate my mothers fruits. But my hunting progressed to the front yard and I shot out a neighbors window in my early teenage years.
Renee – a mixed poodle mom found her in a classified ad had to put hot sauce on my shoes
(hot sauce on my thumb)
Had babies Frisky my favorite, found a home for her, but had to take her back, wouldn’t eat
Had her “fixed”
Tried to staple ears
She would hide under bed, held her in my arms when Dr “put her to sleep”
Whizz- another ad, mom found him, too much for the people to handle. I treated him better
Went hiking to Mt Charleston with him
Afraid of the Dark
Climbing into bed with parents or sleeping on the floor
Penny the Poodle (I only remember this from the Christmas pics)
Yo-yos (5th grade)
Rubic’s Cube (college)
Race Cars w/ Dad
HO Scale Train Set
Matchbox cars, Hot Wheels
National Geographic Road
Couldn’t ice skate – dad bought white skate shoes cause I liked color better than black –didn’t know boys were black girls white.
Didn’t roller skate , but loved to skateboard. Later I skated a fell down because girl I liked asked me to.
Summer camp – asked girl to take pictures in girls shower. Came back with a bunch of normal pictures of her friends. Had a hard time explaining who the girls were and why there were so many.
Spent a lot of time in bathroom with magazines
; “Fixing” Things
“Repairing” Dad’s Stopwatch Blowing up a clock “Testing the scale” Throwing out Dad’s guns on trip to Death Valley Neigborhood witch – threw a metal bar cracked her window Deflating a neighbor’s tires – I thought he was an overweight policeman- he was just a dealer Punching a door (college)
--Sunrise Acres Elementary School
We lived next door to my dad’s cousin. Hazel. They had two children, Paul Jr. and Paula. She had recommended the house to my dad because the school was just down the street. I walked ½ a block to school and I was there. It was so close, I walked home for lunch a 10 minute walk
'68-'70 - Diane Grabo: K-2
Kindergarten – 1st girlfriend, lost my fingernail, when thumb hit by a wooden building block. Turned fascinating shades of color then finally blue and black. It fell off one day when I was playing with my little Tonka bulldozer.
I’m famous – Bozo the Clown TV show – balance a yardstick
I loved nap time, and was sorry it ended in first grade. Even in college, when I would come back after classes, I would often take naps. When I was working with Lorita at SAIC, I would take an afternoon nap under her desk.
To the Principle’s Office –
First time – kindergarten. Paddling served the purpose in 4th and 5th grade. Sixth grade “Keith, I don’t want to hear your voice anymore.” There was only one thing I could say to that: “Then cover your ears” I don’t remember the principle punishing me, but I do remember him trying to suppress his laughter.
Being paddled at school – board had holes in it to make it go faster
Your mom wasn’t any better. She was kicked out of kindergarten for fighting with the boys.
Saw Moon Rock on special class trip 100s of students from all over were there
--3rd Grade –
Drawing Steam engine – bored in class
My First Art Work – a Newsletter that Never Was
Fighting for Love –
Diane was my first girlfriend, kindergarten all the way to second grade. We tempted the pleasures of illicit love and snuck all the way down to the Fifth grade classrooms and had our first kiss. I loved to go over to her house and watch Batman with her. Sadly, she moved. So in third grade, my love was Teri, but John – he wore cowboy boots, so he must have been from Texas had his eye on her too. So I did what any third grader would do. The western way. The town wasn’t big enough for the both of us. I challenged him to a fight. He hit me, hard, and won the girl.
I’m not sure what winning meant because I went over to her house several times all the way to fifth grade. I remember she had a poster of David Cassidy on her wall.
First science Project = magnetism, wooden box with a magnet to attract a needle against force of gravity.
4th Grade –
'73 - Miss Beyer and T.M. Who do I find attractive – maybe to remind me of my 4th grade teacher, but I don’t rember having a crush on her.
Ms. Beyer – Transcendental Meditation 10% of income  her Blue Beetle
Voting for Nixon’s Re-election, me and ~~ were the only two in whole class who did’nt vote for McGovern
P.E. Teacher grabs my shoulder and leaves Mark.
Dad says “I’ll take this all the way to the Supreme Court.”
Learning to Bicycle – and Where Not to Fall
Joey Yalich younger friend down the street let me borrow bicycle. I thought his family was rich because they had a color TV with a remote control
1974 - Our 5th Grade Classroom Burns Down;
Down Mr. Winfrey – “I just can’d nderstand it!”
rescue report card from fire
'74-'75 Bused to Madison 6th Grade Center for 5th Grade - "West Side" the "black" part of Vegas Bused to Madison 6th Grad; Ms. Garcia taught Macrame – made plant hanger for mom
Going through the fire and finding my report card
Dad got me a bike for Christmas, a green Schwinn with banana seat – I believe Paul Jr. next door neighbor had outgrown it. Left it outside one night, maybe the next Christmas and it was stolen. Never saw it again. Dad bought two cheap orange Sears 10 speeds one for him, the other for me.
About 6th grade – did a lot of bicycling with Mark Kramer
'75 - Bused to Madison 6th Grade Center (Westside)
“West Side” (Story)
Music lessons they gave us a flutophone – never learned how to play it.
Ms. Allen backtalk
Walking the Long Way Home
Glasses at age 12 – near sighted
You Can’t Go Home Again –
The buildings of Sunrise Acres are there, but it’s no longer a school. They paved over the playground, and it’s now a parking lot. The park I used to play in when I was a toddler and walked through on my way to Roy Martin, they cut down all the trees, took out the slide, the merry go round, the swings and paved it over turning it into another parking lot. I guess you just can’t have too many parking lots. Now that kids spend more time indoors playing video games.
Best Friend – Jerry Parr
Digging for treasure in desert & in Jerry's backyard
Walking along the top of his curved wall
Family trip with him to Death Valley
A Treehouse in the Desert
My half-nephew comes to visit (my ½ sisters son)
Unicycling – One Fall is Never Enough
High Tech Learning
Phonics and Multiplication Tables
Being Beaten up
Dad enrolled me in Judo class at the YMCA
Sign on ceiling – if you can read this sign you are in the wrong position
Quitters never win and winners never quit
The only good thing I can say about the Boy Scouts was starting fires. I never succeeded with Flint and Stone, but by golly it sure was fun trying.
Hiking with them was like driving with my dad on vacation – get to point B from Point A as fast as possible. Team spirit and camaraderie? They beat up little punks like me.
Coin Collecting Merit Badge was easy, My dad collected coins too
The Apollo moon landing and anything having to do with astronauts – Skylab (6th grade), Apollo-Soyuz, Space Shuttle
The MGM fire – from steps at Senior Year Bishop Gorman steps of room for Poly Sci I remember when the MGM, the biggest casino in Vegas in 1980. caught fire, we could see the smoke rising from Bishop Gorman high School. Classes were dismissed because some had parents that worked at the MGM
The POW’s returning home from Vietnam
Richard Nixon’s Election – only two of us voted for him in the 4th grade
Early Visits to the Doctors and Hospital
4 Nurses had to hold me down to give me shots – How old was I? 16?  When I was 33, I let the nurses give me baths 
First trip to the hospital. My advice, don’t play with yourself in the bathtub, the water’s not that clean and you could get a bladder infection. You know something’s wrong when your pee has blood in it. Fortunately it didn’t go to my kidney’s
Also be careful using a pocket knife to cut a golf ball. My slip required two stitches to fix. “Are you going to castrate it?” I asked. Through muffled laughter the doctor said that wouldn’t be necessary. The nurse seemed to be trying to keep herself from laughing. (They didn’t even need to cauterize it)
Hanging from underneath the high school bleachers on my way down. Had to wear a sling for several weeks.
My allergies – tested with dozens of needle sticks in back. Bermuda grass
Bendadryl, little blue pills for asthma didn’t take them often.
Mom wore mask to mow lawn after dad died. Owen says she had colds a lot, later they relized allergy – only one in a family of nine= I got her genes.
I was sick a lot and when I stayed home from school, I would watch TV, and almost got hooked on my Mom’s soap opera, “Day’s of Our Lives”
“Like sands through the hour glass, so are they days of our lives.”
My job was to rake leaves and trim the Big Mulberrry tree in our front yard – I loved to climb it
(Angela was impressed and said she liked a man that could do things – got me a red flannel Woodsman shirt)
Except for one Halloween, I was always sick that day and only went Trick or Treating once. After that, Dad would lock the gate, turn off the light. Sometimes we would go out to a movie or dinner. But never once was the house vandalized.
Dentist - Getting my molars out. No such thing as reincarnation because I would have remembered the pain!
Couldn’t go with mom to movies anymore, so Walked or rode bike to Cinema that later became a bank. First Movies I saw by myself were Poseiden Adventure, Logan’s Run,
I think I saw Jungle Book with my mom.
Homework – Memorize State Capitals
-- Best Friend – Mark Kramer
Rope Climbing on a Saturday with Mark to get into my School locker
To the Top of City Hall to Bounce Super Balls, try a Nerf – it flies
Learning to Juggle, Borrow his Penthouse
Taught me how to juggle
Driving fast in the Rain, then hitting the brakes
Friendship over after he gets his driver’s license, becomes Jerry Parr’s best friend
Skateboarding and Bicycling
Star Wars (saw it the second time with Mark Kramer and his girlfriend – they paid no attention to the movie, she thought she could translate what the Jawas said)
Picked up by police for T.P. Pam Brown (Mark’s girlfriends) yard. Says I was lucky, an neighbor was going to shoot me. Made me promise to tell my mom next morning- I did.
Trip to Utah, old wooden water pipes
Mark remembers one day when dad saw I’d let a sore on my hip get wet and spanked me. He grabbed my right arm and I spun round and round as he tried to use his left hand (he was left handed but shot right handed) to try and spank me, and after he stopped, I asked, “Are you finished?”
I was surprised when I beat my dad at arm wrestling I was 14 or 15 and he was 64 or 65
1976 -- Roy Martin Junior High
--"Lions and tigers and bears! Oh my!"
Sailplane at Boulder
Summer Swimming with Susan Cunningham (years later I met her mom in College Geology class – and keep staring at her. Looks very familiar. Then I met susan again. She’s working in biology department – confesses to an abortion. Not interested in me anymore unless I want a serious relationship I was still a virgin and not ready)
A Summer of Painting the Walls of the Music Room
Writing Contest – 1st Prize Savings Bond
'77 - K. camping trip with 3 girls
Trip to Cathedral Gorge – Every Boys Dream
Lions & Tigers & Bears – Oh, My! Skipping and Camping with Three Smart Girls
Bill Davis Couldn’t Make it.
Science Fiction Club
Science Class – “I’d rather be soaring” I wrote on a paper. Science teacher wrote back, “I’d rather be Biking” She and another teacher had the bicycling club
Test for club class was cycling up Bonanza hill – impossible without a 10 speed
'78 - All 9th graders held over at Roy Martin
Way to get out of a fight – “That guy over there says he’s tougher than you”
Finger slammed in locker –ring finger left hand – turned fascinating shades of color.
Spanish Class with Ms. Lopez. Spanish speakers took the class for an easy A
Fly Over Grand Canyon w/ “Scenic Airlines”
Art Projects – hanging up stairs – painting music room during summer
Took a library science class, but principal caught me running a movie projector down the hall and I was punished by being put into Home Economics class – only two other boys in the class. All I remember was making melon balls with a melon scooper.
Science Award Parents came down to the awards show, teacher told about how I’d asked on the first day if we would learn about Einstein’s Theory of Relativity
Homework – Spelling Bees
Magazine 1st Supscription – Popular Science, Soaring, Time
Later Byte and Discover
Learning to Fly
My first attempt at flying was down the YMCA stairs. I got smarter my second attempt and jumped off the couch and hit the carpeted living room floor. After that I either became smarter, or dumber and began to jump out of the tree or off the roof with homemade parachutes of plastic sheeting. Later, I decided I just liked to jump off of tall objects and won(?) the lunchtime championship of bravest (foolishest) jumper in third grade. I was the only one to jump off the top of the monkey bars. (Things got especially bad when The Six Million Dollar Man TV series began. We would do everything in slow motion, with sound effects.)
Boulder City – Solo – first instructor smokes cigars
First Job – Wing Runner
Second Job – Dishwasher at Pizza Place, filled in for Mark Kramer
Edwards Air Force Base – High Altitude Chamber – picture of B-2 – security wants to take my camera.
Hobbes, New Mexico. Russ Buchanan in soaring contest
Big Structures being built – learn they are for a Radio Telescope Complex – VLA
Begin a long distance relationship with Tammy
I smell Marajuana for first time, didn’t know what it was.
Eric Spiess, National Geographics, Bike Maintenance
A New Nishiki
Dreaming of Transamerica
Frostline Kit Panniers
Building a Bicycle
Death Valley at Night
25 mile, 50 mile, metric century, full century – only two of us, UNLV tonapah highway out toward test site –cactus springs?
During or shortly after, on long rides I would have knee pains. Then bicycling to UNLV, 11 miles would cause pain. Had physical therapy at Sports Medicine clinic – electricity, warmth, ice. Didn’t make a difference. Only after I gave away my Nishiki in DC and got a Trek bike, did pain go away. Now I don’t have any trouble.
On my long backpacking trips I would feel pain in the knee and hip, and still feel a tinge occasionally, but nothing more.
Who’s That Knocking at My Door?
Searching for Religion
Mormon Missionaries – also good material for Anthropology class
Jehovah’s Witness – material for Psych class
'79 - Father dies
'79 - Pontiac Sunbird
Stereo - record club
My reaction – I didn’t feel anything, I don’t know why.
Helen and her mother came to visit (grandmother’s first plane ride ever!)
Las Vegas High School (1978-79)
'79 - K begins Las Vegas H.S.
Shakespere and Celia Au
I was a Freshman in Junior High (1977-78). Although we didn’t attend any classes there, we were officially part of them, which made the sports teams there. However, if you weren’t track, or sports teams – then you never knew. So I didn’t learn about the Chess Club until I actually started going to classes.
Didn’t make the High School Diving Team
My Sophomore Year
[We bought a car with life insurance money and I learned to drive]
Learning to Drive with Glen – Yellow 79 Pontiac
Traffoc Accidents – Police w/ warning, w/ Celia at stop sign – totaled car, Meadows Parking Lot, concrete pylon at SAIC
Almost lost control of car with Celia coming back from Red Rock – power slide
Phys Ed Beating
Metal Shop – arc welding, car ramps
Car Maintenance for mom – Freon, antfreeze change oil,
I hit pylon in parking garage at SAIC
Accident in parking lot of New Meadows Mall in Vegas
A Born Athlete – The High School Chess Club
I lettered in Chess, battling for ninth out of ten places.
Red Rock with Celia - Fishtailing
Car Wreck with Celia
Celia goes to University of Nevada, Reno for Journalism
High School Prom – I refuse to go with her – I think only about myself. I don’t dance, didn’t want to go.
Can I take her future husbands place in rehersal? Not a good idea says the priest and her parents
Used Car Auction 1981 Chevy Citation
Tripping with Ian/p> Sometime before leaving for Northwestern, Ian and I took a week long car trip to see the West. We’d gone hiking at Mt. Charleston before (During college I’d hiked around Mt. Charleston, and took a slip on ice and said calmly “good bye” because I thought it was the end.) We traveled to Arches National Park did a few short trails – beautiful colors and sculptures are within easy distance. Next we drove his little ? pinto, opel? Up to Pikes Peak and I hiked to the top in my barefeet – they were tough and it wasn’t more than a ½ mile.
This was before I’d gotten into photography and I asked Ian why he didn’t take pictures. He said he took pictures in his mind and didn’t want a camera to spoil them.
He does have an incredible mind. He was number one on the Vegas High Chess team, and I believe several years later, he scored a rating above 2000 making him a Master, an elite group, probably 1% of chess players achieve it. Anyway, we played chess in the car while he was driving. I was a little worried and asked him how he would do it. Would he have to take his eyes off the steering wheel. Would he need me to tell him where the pieces were. “No,” he said, I don’t need to see the chess board.” This man can play “blindfold” chess while driving. And guess what, he beat me!
I was keeping track of every penny – money for gas, money for food, since I wanted everything to be 50-50 and fair. From him I learned that for some people, money’s not that big a deal. And that interesting from Ian, growing up without a father. Living in a small apartment/house with mom. He toured the country for several months, all the way to Pensacola, Florida. Subsisting on Peanut butter sandwiches. He knew that they were the cheapest but most nutritious meals.
English Class, silly putty, blood on my toga, Shakespeare – Brutus , Mark Antony? speech?
Driving -Fishtailing with Celia
1st Drive in movie – my mom helped me pack fruit, drinks, popcorn, blankets. I don’t remember the movie, but we didn’t even kiss – couldn’t even snuggle in a car with bucket seats and a console with a gear shift. She was disappointed.
She got me my Third Job – a real one with tax & SS payments – Inventory items at small business stores
Bishop Gorman (Sept ‘79- May ‘81)
'80 - K. begins Bishop Gorman
Glen - Heathkit printer
"Twilights Last Gleaming"
Chess Computer, then building a real computer – Glen’s Advice
Second Stereo – Componenets I researched and bought my self
(I still have phonograph, but gave receiver and speakers to Helena’s dad) Cassette player doesn’t work. Still thinking of getting it fixed.
Columbia record club.
Book Clubs Quality Paperback Book club
Physics Class, Dick Hopkins, Joe Scanlan, Richard Jordan – Pizza Nights
Las Vegas Wind Tunnel Christmas gifts for friends
Religion Class oversight
Computer class with Mr. Roos – learned to program BASIC using Commodore PET computers – used cassette taps to store programs, had 16K of memory
I built North Star Horizon. Z80 8 Mhz, s-100 bus 32K memory, got a 32K card 64K (56 useable) with 5-1/4Double Density Shugart floppy disk 180K. Glen helped me learn assembly language. First built Heathkit Printer 9 pin dot matrix, Heathkit Monitor. 300 baud acoustic modem. Glen visited and used a highspeed 1200 baud modem to connect to work.
I could connect to UNLV to do work (later used for my FORTRAN class in 81-82 (got an A)
But had to take an algebra class – couldn’t place in Calculus.
Senior Year (’80 – ’81)
But that’s not Fair! “Life isn’t Fair” This is a good lesson for you
Robert Forbus Mercy Ambulence, Political Science trip to Carson City Meet with lawmakers
Lunches in the Computer Room
I was a member of the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society – we didn’t have Phi Beta Kappa (Seif said membership fee school had to pay was too high)
'81 - K's High School Graduation
No to Celia
Didn’t go to my own graduation
Early Studies – COBOL class w/ Mr Roos, and Guidance Couselor Eric Seif First College A
Job offer withdrawn
Thinking of College
The school of my dreams – U.C. Davis – bike paths, alternative energy. I had my life all planned out. We would sell the house and move there together. Alternate admission to U.C. San Diego
Dick finally ended up there and I visited him – great library! It was built upside down.
My First Thought of Suicide
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Computer Science, Electrical Engineering
My dad was a Mason, so I received a Masonic Scholarship (partial) but I had to give a speech first and I was scared. I measured my pulse before the speech, it was 144 and I told the audience how scared I was. The speech was about George Washington’s Faults. But I still got the scholarship. I also received a Bernice Schiffman Memorial Scholarship. I asked if I could meet her. But I never learned anything about her.
Hot Air Balloons
The Stars with Celia and Pam Brown
Geology Trip to Nevada Test Site – where my dad used to work
A Major in Nothing and Everything
Words of warning by Uncle Charles
Words of warning by Steve Parker
“Be careful what you say, because there are some things you can’t take back.”
Philosophy Class – Craig Walton
Hiking & Photography with Geri Ward, learned about phography from her and bought 35 mm camera – it was the beginning of another obsessions after Chess and computers
Hoover Dam, Nevada Mountains, Leman Cavern Tour by Candlelight
Graduation – “with Distinction” (cum laude)
French Class – Wendy Woyski 1st 35 mm photographs of her wooden fence
Trip with Maureen – upper part of Zion
Christmas Lights in Vegas with Maureen, & sisters family
Solar Collectors for House – $500 build yourself in a private class, Dick helped
Installed and worked great for 15 or 20 years
Later I replaced water heater all by myself
Best Friend – Michael Green
Research Assistant for Dr. Campbell
Presentation at Far West Popular Conference
Wrote & did layout for the Agenda publication
French Class with Wendy – Invited her to Northwestern with me.
She invited me to go overseas, and I picked French Polynesia and Tahita. I started working out, loosing weight, exercising, got my passport, she changed her mind because she wanted to go as friends and she realized I was expecting more. Darn Right! I planned on going skinnydipping and making love on a deserted beach. Why else would I loose weight and exercise 
Summer Vacations – Hiking and Photography of the Sierras
Phys Ed Hiking Class – Red Rock, Ice Box Canyon, into the Grand Canyon
Eye Infection – mom lead me around from class to class
Herpes simplex – used viroptic – 1st question “Do you wear contacts”
Dating lesson –
women can be friends, but don’t date to make friends. It wastes your time and theirs. I should have joined a hiking club and made friends that way. The bicycling club had few people my age and even fewer women my age.
Interdisciplinary studies kept me from making friends in college – except Mike Green, still my best friend.
I always felt I got along better with girls than boys. My closest friends in High School and after were girls.
My ideal girl was tall, thin, with small breasts, long black hair, who loved to hike a was playful. Like Walt Disney, wanted to get married at Disneyland. Loved Sex, a scientist or engineer.
Playboy Model with a Ph.D.
-- Joe & Lorita
Joe & Lorita Have a baby
Trips with Celia
Trips with Geri Ward
--how to take pictures --Great Basin National Park Leman Caves candlelight tour!
Trips with Angela Molnar (now Davison)
Hike Into Grand Canyon – Havasu
Circular 4 state tour – 4 corners, Mesa Verde, Chaco Canyon, Grand Canyon
A Train Trip to D.C. (from Northwestern)
A Plane Flight to N.Y.C. (1st year – 2nd semester Macro do bad on test)
A Bus Ride to Iowa
A Year at Northwestern
Computer Operator – Lorita and SAIC
Getting Whizz before I leave
Northwestern University – 5 Scholars
I lived in the very Northern part of Chicago and road my bicycle to school at Northwestern U. in Evanston; except in the Winter when I took the "El" (elevated train). It was 1986, the first time I moved away from home and was living on my own, with a mattress on the floor and a table made of a 4 x 8 sheet of plywood on sawhorses.
Shari Garmise & Clarissa
Renting Apartment – Noise below girlfriend/boyfriend, jump rope, knock on door
$100 a month for food
Memorable Moment: when the market dropped 500 points on one day. Standing in the Northwestern Lunch room with Ethan Cosgriff
Lap Top computer
Terminal Masters – Letter to professors
1989: To Washington, DC and Back Again
-- The End of Communism and the End of a Dream
I thought a Master’s Degree was my ticket into Washington, D.C. It was simply a pass to work in the Congressional Mail room
Rountrip Ticket, stay with Ian Jordan in his studio and sleep under his table
Development organizations, hire expatriots and former Peace Corps
Fastest way into Peace Corps was skilled trades
Construction Worker Gofer
Hernia’s don’t impress Peace Corps Recruiters
Walking my way to a recovery and a new life
American University and Development Economics
The Fall Colors
Braniff Airlines Goes Bankrupt
Leaving my Nishiki Bicycle Behind
Return to Vegas for More School
1990 - 1991 UNLV Economics Dept.
Dr. Thomas Carroll, Assane Djeto,
Seattle Economics Conference
Teaching History and Political Science
Calculus Lessons for Life
Laubach Literacy tutor
When did I take my scuba diving lessons and become certified?
My First Fiancée
Rescue – Living in trailer
"While growing up on the west side of Chicago, Davison moved more than 20 times because her parents couldn't maintain steady jobs and were frequently evicted. When her parents lost custody of their kids, Davison spent several years homeless while finishing high school. Considering that less than a quarter of homeless children graduate from high school, Davison has cause to be thankful. When her brother was placed in a foster home about 70 miles away, Davison dodged child services officials and stayed in Chicago. In high school, she slept in various places so she could continue studying. She achieved a full college scholarship at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas."
Joe and I take a trip to L.A. to visit Dick – He’s working on the space Station and gives us a tour of a mock up of it. We visit Venice Beach and I buy a dirty joke t-shirt and thong underwear for Angela
Her first bikini, House sitting for Steve Parker
Emergency Room – Valium
Co-dependency – Theory and Practice
Computer from Lorita, Angela buys the printer
GRE Second time around
Visiting Grad Schools to Avoid Previous Fate
Wisconsin, Boston, Minnesota, Iowa,
Working for Room and Board
Wet n’ Wild (closed in 2006)
Off to Iowa
Buchanan Hall – first roommate – strange Taiwanese
E-mail in a Long-Distance Relationship
Visit Angela’s Relatives – Chicago & Ethan’s Wedding
Development Economics becomes Environmental Economics
Conferences – New Orleans, San Francisco (Before accident) Toronto (after accident)
What Can You Do in Iowa?
Follow the Railroad Tracks and Hop on a Train
Buy a Bike
Bicycle on a frozen Lake
Bicycle When it’s Below Zero
Learn to Sail
Hike the Hills
Iowa Living History Farm
Teaching Tzu-Ling to Swim, 1st bikini
Teaching Tzu-Ling to Bicycle
Tip over boat with Tzu-Ling and Camera
My Teaching evaluations
"He was the best teacher I ever had" followed by "He was the worst teacher I ever had" Both evaluations were from the same class!
-- Goodbye to Angela
-- Goodbye to Tzu-Ling
-- Goodbye to my Feet
Six Months in the Hospital
Second thought of suicide
-- A New Life Without Feet
Graduation – my Mom Finally Comes
Visiting Professor at New Hampshire
Drive to New Hampshire with all my possessions U-Haul
Biking the White Mountains
Small old cemeteries behind New Hampshire U.
Back to DC
Drive to DC didn’t mean to do it in one day 14 hours?
Environmental Economics at the EPA
A short Commute
Shari – Just Friends – Prefers Sperm Donors
Great Expectations (recommended by Angela)
One Date is all it Takes - Doctor, Buddist, Geneticist
Purchased contact lenses
Art Work, Photography, Bicycling, Trip to Las Vegas, Costume Store,
Sheila’s Wedding. 1st bikini, Trip to New York City
Margaret – Shenandoah, Sailing
SVDC (recommended by a date)
Zoo, Cleaning Potomac
Louise, Rick? (inflatable Kayak)
Executive Committee – running for office, louise suggested it
Funding for Ride Across America RAM
Only advantage to loosing feet was not waiting in line for Roller Coaster and getting the front row seat!
My Second Fiancée
Tsg-Hui Chang – Tzu-Ling upset because I’d promised her I wouldn’t marry anyone from Taiwan or China. She promised not to marry anyone from America
In my previous life, I must have been a Chinese Emporer, I love everything about China except Chinese Opera
Biking, Sailing, Fourth of July, House Sitting, Bikinis
Break-up, Make-up, Break-up, Make-up, ad infinitim
C&O Canal Marriage Test - Snoring
Colonial Cycling with Glen Gillis
Mountain Hostel Wedding Plans
Bicycling in Intercourse
Trip to Kentucky for Family Reunion, sleeping under the stars
Trip to Las Vegas, Drive to Grand Canyon, Helicopter to Grand Canyon
Another Bicycle Accident
September 10, 2001 (Day before 9-11)
9-11 From my Window
Bike Accident on Rainy day, didn’t know I’d broken arm. Needed a cast on one other was sprained. Scheduled to move at end of month. Signed papers with hand in left hand in cast
Buying a House
Celebrate Halloween at new house October 31, 2001 Fix Ventilation System – like living in a new house –cool in summer, warm in winter
Ever since I bought the house in 2001, I'd dreamed of creating a walkout basement. The backyard of the house had a very steep slope that I had difficulty walking on, and I realized that if I leveled the backyard, it would be near the level of the basement foundation. So each year for three years, I rented a Bobcat and a dump truck and found someone who needed dirt. The last year I couldn't find anyone, so I put the dirt in the front yard which meant that my front yard is now flat and I don't have to worry about steps anymore.
That was finished in early 2005, and I drew the design for a deck, got the building permits, and found someone to build it. My mom got to enjoy the deck when she was here, and last year I hired a structural engineer to design the reinforcements necessary to keep the house from falling down when the holes were cut in the foundation.
The house now has two basements. The second was built for the new addition, built by the fellow I'd bought the house from, but there was no way to get to the second basement from the first. So one hole was put in the first basement so it connected to the second, and the second hole was to create an opening to my new level backyard - no steps needed.
Key West Wedding
Natural Childbirth Classes
Lost in the Forest
Pictures in the Forest
Teaching Economics at Germantown – got rid of my desire to ever teach again.
My First Child
Parent’s Reverse Psychology
20 Minutes to Grandparent Care Center
Claude Moore Colonial Farm
"Run Me Over"
"Just Shoot You"
Day Care Starts at Two
Arrest & Jail
A New Marriage
Family Trips – Pennsylvania Turnpike, Fort Delaware
Mom’s last Visit
My Mother’s Murder
My emotional reaction much stronger than I thought. First I joked but it hit me hard a few days later. Started crawling into bed with helena
A New Life
New Stereo - $3000
Old National Geographics $650 or $800
June 7, 2007 Timothy
July 4, 2007 Sold Honda Civic Hatchback
July 7, 2007 New Car – Honda CR-X
Keep finances separate
Keep laundry separate – all my laundry disappears
Yellow towels are mine – pillowcases mine
I have a big mouth, I should learn to keep it shut