Saturday, November 29, 2008

Better than turkey, it's lemon meringue!

On Wednesday, we ran into FoodsCo. We started by looking at the pies. There were pumpkin pies and apple pies and coconut cream pies and banana cream pies, but what I had wanted the other day was a lemon meringue pie. La Netta found one in the pie section. We then went over to the juice aisle where I got two 96-ounce bottles of apple juice for $6.something.

Pet Smart was on the schedule. Rosa asked if anyone else wanted to come in with her, and I said I would. Amidst the sounds of parrots squawking, I perambulated my way through the pet store by following Rosa.

A song played on the radio. "Funny things keep shining through", I heard in the chorus. Then . . . did they say "pxke around"?

"Did they say the P & A words?", I asked Rosa.

"No", said Rosa.

When the chorus came up again, I told Rosa to listen.

"They didn't say it", said Rosa. "Hey, isn't this song from 96.5?" 96.5 is KOIT.

"I know I've heard it before", I said.

We left, unable to figure out what that last line was.

"Is it 'Funny things keep shining through'?", I asked Rosa.

"Yes", said Rosa.

I asked La Netta when we got back in the van: "You know that song that goes: 'Funny things keep shining through' . . ." I hummed the rest of the chorus for her.

"No, I don't know that song", said La Netta. Really? She had never heard it?

We got to Barnes & Noble and looked through the CD's. Today we stopped at the #-D section. Barenaked Ladies, Beck, Aqua, 10,000 Maniacs, Creedence Clearwater Revival, the Deftones. I asked Rosa whether they had said the C-word in the song that was playing over the Intercom. She started listening, but they didn't say that line over again. The song said, "My, my, my, time flies".

La Netta gave me our end-of-week hug for Wednesday. The week was over already.

I stood in front of our house with my FoodsCo bags. The handles on my plastic bag with the apple juice bottles broke. Bernard picked the bottles up for me.

"You know, I just can't wait for Stan to open the door so I can get in and play from video games", said Bernard.

It was 2:45 and Stan still had not come.

We talked about Thanksgiving. I told the group how I had a lemon meringue pie for Thanksgiving. Then, the conversation turned to Christmas.

"You know, I believe in Santa Claus", said Bernard. "You better believe in Santa Claus, or you won't get presents."

It was 2:50 with no sign of Stan Man. Bernard put down my juices. I was still holding the lemon meringue bag.

Finally, Stan arrived. It was about 3:00. With the door finally open for the group home residents, at last we had something to be thankful for.

I googled the lyrics. I searched for "funny things keep shining through" and then "funny things" "keep shining through". I tried "keep shining through" and "funny thing". I even tried "sunny things". I googled
"keep shining through" lyrics
without the "funny things".

I finally found out that the words were "finer things" and that the song was "Finer Things" by Steve Winwood. I checked a YouTube video, and voilà! That was it!

Oh, and the last line of the chorus? That was "golden dance", not "pxke around".

Monday, November 24, 2008

My last meeting with John

At 2:37 today John came to get me. This was the day I had anticipated for weeks: the last meeting.

I started out by telling John about Lamesha. Lamesha had spoken with me via telephone. I got to tell her "Aaron says hi". We also talked about how much we missed each other. I brought up my rock musical again. "Like High School Musical?", Lamesha asked.

Then I excused myself to go to the restroom at 2:41. When I came out, it was 2:45. I had missed the danger zone.

John got out his laptop and I showed him a site where I have my musical Angst posted. He bookmarked it. I then showed him the Inner Bruise page at http://www.freewebs.com/innerbruise and he bookmarked it too.

I asked John his surname, and he said it was Luna. This Hispanic surname explained why he had black hair, and why he could speak Spanish fluently. People had always just called him John, so I had never gotten to known his last name.

John said, "Thank you for answering all my questions about yourself."

"You're welcome", I said. "I'm just an open, frank person who's not shy about talking about myself. On the Internet, I'm not afraid to reveal my age or my birthdate or my disability. I have an almost Scandinavian openness."

"Scandinavian", John said, and laughed. "Have you always been this open?"

"Well, when I was in kindergarten, I did something from my parents. There was this song that was scaring the living feces out of me, and I wouldn't tell them what song it was."

I told John about this song. I was malingering to avoid going to school every day. At first I wouldn't tell my parents or teachers what was wrong -- my lips were sealed shut. Then they finally pulled out of me that it was a certain song the class was doing, a song that was playing on their record player, that had me scared, but I wouldn't tell them which song it was.

John asked me what song it was. I told him that it was "I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly".

The song introduced me to my lifelong enmity with dipsers. I also developed a throat-scraping ritual for whenever I heard the word "goat", which later evolved into purging. The word "goat" tasted like Pop Tarts.

I speculated that this was the source of my logaesthesia. He asked whether I had any other OCD symptoms at the time and I mentioned that I had isopodomania -- when I stepped at one point with my left foot I would have to step at the corresponding point on the right with my right foot, and vice versa.

Dr. Gorodetsky had also said synaesthetic patients sometimes tasted words. Synaesthesia cannot be acquired by a traumatic experience.

John said he doubted that this made me become logaesthetic, but speculated that I would have developed some other OCD-related problem even if I hadn't heard this song. He said that millions of children still learn this song in school to this very day, and don't become logaesthetic.

John said he was sorry that we haven't found a solution for my logaesthesia.

At 3:15, John checked for Stan, but he wasn't there.

"John", I said, "Since this is going to be our last meeting, can we have a hug?"

"We can", said John. I stood up on my tiptoes to embrace the tall John Luna, as he bent over. Finally Stan came.

"It's been a pleasure getting to know you, James", said John.

"It's been a pleasure getting to know you", I said. "I bet you never met anyone like me."

"That's true," said John.

"Thank you", I said. "I take that as a compliment."

Sunday, November 23, 2008

A lot of P-words

Friday we went to the Pacific East Ranch Market. I bought Japanese rice crackers and some chocolate wafer rolls before we left off for Wal-mart.

As we got into Wal-mart, Rosa pointed out the Hawaiian punches, which were priced off today. I picked up a limeade Hawaiian punch. Then I got lost and called out, "Rosa! Rosa! ROSA!"

"James!", I heard. I walked over and it was Rosa. We walked down the aisles, together once again.

"Pajxmx!", said Mon. This time she pronounced it thie way people in Moraga do.

"Rosa!", I cried. "Get me out of the clothes section and into the restroom." My hands were over my ears.

"We're not in the clothes section", she said.

"Well, get me to the restroom!"

I followed her with my eyes closed. Then, I tried to latch onto her arm.

"Have you touched yourself today?", asked Rosa.

"No", I said.

So she let me grab her arm.

After walking with her, I got to the restroom. There I purged off "pajxmx".

I washed my hands and came out. I had to ask Rosa if I heard a man in the store say "pxke around". "Did he say the P & A words?", I asked.

"No, he didn't", said Rosa.

"Did he say 'pope out'?"

"'Pxke out'," said Rosa. I would still have to purge it off.

We visited the juice aisle where I got some apple juice cocktail. Then, we walked up to Mon.

"Pajxmx!", I heard Mon say. This time she said it the West Contra Costa way.

"Stop saying it, because we're here", said Rosa.

I told Rosa I needed to go again. She took me to pay for my juice and then got me to the restroom.

After what seemed like forever, I finished purging off "pajxmx" and washed my hands again. We left Wal-mart, with two bagged juice bottles in my hands.

I then purged off the two "pxke out"s in the sliding-door restroom at Miller's Knots. No soap to wash my hands with.

Maria was there to drive us all home. She said, "Pxrdon?" while she was speaking with Ken.

I growled, and she said, "Sorry". I purged it off in the back.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

A mouth full o' spit

"An old Buick LeSabre", said Mike Williams. "An old Buick LeSabre."

Today we were parked in front of Burger King when La Netta asked Mon about what she wanted to buy at Marshall's. Mon said she wanted to buy baby clothes.

"What kind of baby clothes?", asked La Netta.

"Pajxmx", said Mon.

I growled.

"Really?", asked La Netta.

"Yes", said Mon. "Pajxmx for my baby."

I growled again.

"La Netta!", I said. "I need to go to the restroom!"

"We're at a restroom", said Rosa. We were parked in front of Burger King.

"Did she say it in the singular or plural?", I asked La Netta.

"Singular", said La Netta.

I ran into the hamburger restaurant and turned right to the restroom. There I purged off the second "pajxmx", which was pronounced the way La Netta says it. What a nightmare.

Then I got to the first "pajxmx", which was pronounced the way I grew uop hearing it. I then proceeded to wash my hands.

La Netta came to get me. "Let me take you somewhere else", said then. Then she saw I was washing my hands.

I finally left Burger King after what was at least half an hour in there. Then Rosa asked me, "Do you have spit in your mouth?"

"Why do you ask?", I asked.

"Because I can see it in your mouth. Spit it out, please."

There went that word "please". "NO!!!!!!!!!!!"

I stepped into the van.

"James, I don't want you in here with that spit. You might get it in the van."

I stayed outside and built a big stream of saliva. It accumulated in my mouth, and swishes as if using mouthwash were soon audible from my cheeks.

"Do you hear Jolene?", asked La Netta.

"No", I said.

"She says she doesn't want to get in trouble, so she wants to leave."

I continued swishing the saliva around.

"Do you hear Jolene?", La Netta asked.

"No", I replied.

"She says that if you don't get in the van now, she won't go to program anymore."

I spat all my saliva out in the gutter and walked into the van.

We drove somewhere to change Jolene.

"Saintly praise!", said Mike. "There's more!"

"We're changing Jolene here", said La Netta.

"So we're going to change Jolene inside Rasputin?", I asked.

"Huh?", said La Netta.

"So we're going to change Jolene inside Rasputin?"

"I didn't hear you."

"So we're going to change Jolene inside Rasputin?"

"I can't make out that 'sputin' part."

"Ra-sputin", said Rosa. "No, this is before Rasputin. Davis Park."

Jolene changed herself, then we drove to the office.

"Let's meet the other people in our group", said Mike. "Ken, Mon, Jolene and James, for having you with us today."

After that, we drove to Berkeley. Mon wanted to go into the sushi bar. We crossed the streets, with several long-haired, tie-dye-wearing, and besunglassed people. They looked like me, except there weren't many people in turtlenecks.

I ducked a tree to my right.

"It's not going to touch you", said La Netta. "See, that tree is way up high. The leaves can't touch you."

We stepped in front of Rasputin. We saw they were closed.

"They should open right around now", said La Netta. She checked the sign, and they opened at noon.

A man unlocked the door. "Rasputin Records is now opening", he said.

I stepped in. "Where do you want to go?", asked La Netta.

"I want to look at the alternative music", I told her.

"Here's some", she said. I looked at the Clash and the Cure. Then La Netta moved and went to another section. "Do you like metal?", she said.

I saw the CD's in front of me. Bands that had names like Immortal, the Impalers and Impetigo. "I'm not into metal", I told her.

So La Netta took me to another section. This was rock clearance. She pointed out a Nelly Furtado CD for less than $3.

I saw some P.O.D. This was the album that had "Alive" and "Youth of the Nation" on it. The four guys were shown standing on the front cover all wearing the same jeans and T-shirt.

I looked at Jason Mraz's CD. It showed a plain human head with random black-and-white drawings around it.

Our Lady Peace inhabited the O section, while Sixpence None the Richer occupied the S's. Finally, we were ready to leave, without having bought anything.

Several of us bought lunch at a Berkeley pizza parlor called Fat Slice Pizza, then we walked back towards the van and drove to McDonald's. I took my pill at that time.

Lunch was Berkeley Marina so I got out and used a restroom, just for the toilets. Then I exited the restroom and drove home with La Netta and Rosa's group.

They dropped Mike off at the office after a forgetful office staff finally made a cellphone call to us, then dropped off Ken. When we got at Ken's house, Jolene pulled on me and said, "Robin! Robin! You're home, Robin!"

"This isn't Robin's house," I told her. "This is Ken's house."

"She thinks you're Robin", said La Netta.

La Netta and Rosa talked about yesterday, when Robert was with their group.

"Mike was telling Robert to shut the hell up", said La Netta. "He said, 'Shut the HELL UP, Bradley!'"

"I'd never heard Mike cuss like that", said Rosa. "They told me Mike cusses at Robert when he's with Tieeany's group, but I just couldn't see Mike acting that way."

"Well, I figure that it's because they both like to talk a lot, and Mike thinks Robert's talking over him."

"Does Robert really talk that much?"

"Yes. He says, 'Winna! Winna! Does Target have popcorn? How much does soda cost? Winna, Winna! Are we going to Wal-mart! Does Wal-mart have headphones? 'Scuse me, Winna!'"

We all laughed. If only Ken were in the van to hear us.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Don fools around again

At 8:45 today, Don picked me up instead of La Netta. He told me that if Kweisi didn't come, he would give me to La Netta. If Kweisi did come, I'd stay with Don.

He told me that the radio today was jerking and would switch to a different station every time we hit a bump, so if I wanted the radio off to just tell him. No Emanuel today, and Jeremy was sick.

Don made a call to his house and asked about Jeremy. At the end, he said, "All right! Keep an exe on him!"

"Ewwwww!", I said.

"Sorry", said Don. "Good-bye."

Don turned the radio on, and it flipped to the wrong station. I decided I wanted the radio off.

Don made a stop at a bank. There was no one else in, so he went in.

When he came out, he said, "That's a tiny bank, but it's the biggest bank in the world. C-tibank."

I growled and purged off "C-tibank" in the back.

I told Don that if Kweisi was with La Netta and I was stuck with him, I wanted Don to take me to Barnes & Noble, where he should have taken me last time but didn't.

"You knew you were going to run out of time if you kept fooling around and going to pointless and redundant stops, but you did it anyway", I told Don.

Don turned the radio on again. When it flipped to another station, I asked him to turn it off.

Don called the office and learned that La Netta had picked Kweisi up. That meant I was staying with him.

Don stopped at a restroom break. "Don", I told him, "If you don't get me to Barnes & Noble today, I'm going to tell Lita."

Don stopped at another restroom. As we drove off, I said, "Now we're getting to Barnes & Noble, right?"

"How long do you want to stay?", he asked. "Robin doesn't do well in there."

I told him how long I wanted to stay, then we got a cellphone call. Don's cellphone sounds like an old-fashioned telephone ringing.

He picked it up, and his wiee told him to pick up a prescription. So he stopped at the drugstore. I asked whether we was going to drive it back home, and he said he'd do that after program.

He drove on, and to my surprise we found ourselves at another stop. "Where are we?", I asked.

"We're at a Barnes & Noble", said Don. "But it's not the one we usually go to."

"That's all right", I said.

"It's smaller than the other ones."

"That's all right."

"And it doesn't have any books."

I looked around and saw our surroundings were pastoral. "Don!", I said. "We're at a park!"

Don explained that he just needed to give Robin some time to unwind. It was 12:45 now. Don said as soon as we left, we'd go to Barnes & Noble.

We drove off. "OK, now for Barnes & Noble", I said. "No more fooling around."

"Shattered" came on the radio.

"Michael Jackson", said Don.

"Don!", I said. "This is O.A.R.!"

"O.A.R.?"

"Of a Revolution."

The radio flipped, so I asked Don to keep the radio off for the rest of the day. "What ie it turns to KBLX, and they're eoing traffic, and they say the M-word?", I asked.

We made another stop. I looked around, ane we were at a creek.

"Don!", I said. "You said there would be no more fooling around before we got to Barnes & Noble."

"Well, this is educational", said Don. "Look -- the Grand Canyon."

"Eon! That's not what the Grand Canyon looks like!"

"What are you going to do for lunch?"

"We'll worry about that after we get to Barnes & Noble."

Don stopped and visited the horses. He says a horse usually comes down when it sees them, but this day the horse didn't come down.

Don drove on. "We're taking the scenic route", he said.

"Don!", I objected. "We are not taking the scenic route. We are getting to Barnes & Noble via the fast route!"

"See all this country?", said Don. Don stopped at a hill. "See this cow?", he said.

"Don! That's not spectacular!"

"Look! There's a cow, standing on a hill."

"Don! That is mundane!"

"It's not Monday, it's Tuesday", said Don.

"I said 'mundane'."

"But it's Tuesday!"

"Mundane, with an N at the end."

"It's Tuesday, bro."

"M-U-N-D-A-N-E."

We drove away from the country scenery, then Robin started really yelling and squirming. Don knew what that meant: he had to get him to a restroom.

Don stopped at some park and let Robin out to use the restroom. Finally Robin came back in.

"DON", I said. "NOW WE ARE GOING TO BARNES & NOBLE. NO MORE RESTROOMS. NO MORE PARKS. NO MORE COUNTRY. NO MORE FOOLING AROUND!"

"Let me see what time it is", said Don. "Oh, it's 2:10. We need to get you home!"

"Don! I am going to tell Lita unless you get me to Barnes and Noble!"

"Well, I guess you're going to have to tell Lita on me", said Don.

"Don! You stopped at five different parks! I asked you for just one thing today. We had all day. And you didn't do it!"

Don turned the radio on again.

"DON! OFF!", I yelled at him. "No more radio. NO MORE RISKS!" I had repeatedly told Don I wanted it off all day, but Don kept experimenting with it.

Don got me home at 2:35, without having gone to Barnes & Noble.

At 2:45, I tried called Maria, but my voice was harshened from all the yelling and lilted like a 12-year-old's ponticello. "Is Lita here?", I asked.

Maria informed me she wasn't at the office. She said to try again in an hour.

I called at 3:45 and still no Lita. I asked Maria to have Lita phone me when she got to the office.

And so far I have yet to receive a call.

Monday, November 17, 2008

The day I got home at 6:00

Today, I got out of bed at 8:46 and left my room (turning off my white sound machine) at 8:49.

Was that "pxking around" I heard coming from the news station? I listened some more and they were discussing electronics stores. They could conceivably be talking about browsing in these stores. Then I heard the "pxking around" or whatever it was again.

"Did they say 'important'?", I asked Stan.

"James," said Stan. "Nobody's listening to that but you." He turned off the news.

That made me angry! The news had to be on in the morning, right when I was getting out of bed to leave for program. And then, nobody else was listening to it, listening out for words for their poor Enzingiyi.

When we stopped at the office at program, I got to the restroom to purge off one of the P&A words (which may not have even been said). I went through a lot of pain of shocking myself with those thrusts. "Padoloking around, padoloking around, padoloking around . . .", I chanted.

Then we stopped at Trader Joe's, skipping Krispy Kreme. I had a craving for molasses cookies, so I visited the cookie aisle. I couldn't find any molasses cookies, but I did find something else: pfeffernüsse. They came out to $2.99, so with a $5 bill in my pocket, I visited the frozen food aisles to throw in an additional $2.49 vegetarian burrito.

Then we got to our lunch site: Refugio Park. I gestured by pointing to the restroom, and the people in my van let me outside to spit. I walked all the way to the restroom, where I released a huge stream of saliva. As I was purging off the other "pxking around", I heard music. Was it an ice xxxxx truck?

Oh no! The ice xxxxx truck tune was playing! It was "The Entertainer"!

"The ice xxxxx truck!", a little girl squealed from afar.

I put the "padoloking around" chants down for a while to purge off the "ice xxxxx". Then I finished up "pxking around".

I was a wreck when I came back. If only one person had been listening to the news -- Stan, LaKeisha, Bernard, anyone.

As I got to the office, La Netta looked at a purchase of hers and said, "They're pretty darn txsty!"

"Blechhh!", I exclaimed.

"Shoots!", said La Netta. "I am so sorry, James!"

I asked La Netta what time it was when we arrived at John's office, and she told me it was 2:20.

"I can't wait that long!", I said.

"Oh, wait, it's 2:30."

John came out there in no time.

"See ya, James. I'm sorry about saying that word", said La Netta.

After John and I greeted and came into his office, I told him I had to go to the restroom. He let me go in, where I purged off "txsty".

"I heard La Netta apologizing for saying a word", John said when I was done.

"Yeah", I replied. "She said the T-word".

I asked John whether he had been keeping up with my blog. John said he had read to second-to-last entry, and the third-to-last entry, but didn't get beyond the title and opening paragraph of the dipser trap article. I learned that his laptop had not been turning on.

I also told John about my day today, with no one listening out to the news.

"I'm sorry I couldn't help you find a resolution for your logaesthesia", said John.

"That's all right", I said.

3:15 came, so John looked out for Stan. At 3:33, Stan arrived. I collected my Trader Joe's items and told John, "It's been nice seeing you, John".

"It's been nice seeing you, James", said John.

I took a ride with Aaron and Stan. "Tell Lamesha thank you for saying hi to me", said Aaron.

"I will", I told him.

"So you're not going to be seeing John anymore?", said Stan. "Even if he can't fix your problem don't you just want him for support?"

"I want next week to be our last meeting", I replied.

"Stan, I think I still need to go", said Aaron.

Aaron wanted to go to Taco Bell. I told Stan I hadn't bought lunch, as I had spent my last $5 at Trader Joe's.

Stan dropped Aaron off at John's office at 4:00, then later picked him up at 4:45.

"Stan, I don't want a hug for my Sunday shower this week", I told him. I was upset about this morning.

"That's fine", said Stan. "We don't have to have a hug."

I told Stan about this morning. "And you said the only one who was listening was me."

"Which was true", said Stan. "Hey James, you have a really good memory. That's what I love about you."

"And I have a pretty bad memory", said Aaron.

"You know what you're good at, Aaron?", asked Stan. "Remembering jokes. You always have some jokes for me."

"Here's one", said Aaron. "Why is six afraid of seven?"

"I give up", said Stan.

"Because seven ate nine!"

"I don't get it", said Stan.

"Ate, like the past tense of eat", I said.

"Oh, I get it", said Stan. He laughed.

"What's black and white and red all over?", asked Aaron.

"I give up", said Stan.

"A newspaper."

"Want to tell him my version?", I asked.

"OK", said Aaron. "What's black and white and red all over?"

"What?", asked Stan.

"A Communist penguin."

I explained to Aaron that Communists were sometimes called reds.

"What's red and green and goes 60 miles per hour?", asked Aaron.

"What?", asked Stan.

"A frog in a blender."

"Here's one. What do you call a gay dinosaur?"

"What?"

"Mega-sore-ass. Get it?"

We arrived at Taco Bell. It was so dark, that instead of utilizing the drive-through, we went inside. Stan gave me $20 more to spend.

I ordered a soft-shell taco instead of a hard-shell one this time. Aaron first ordered one thing, then changed his order, then requested a drink, then when he got his order asked them to put lava sauce on it.

Stan finally came out to the van, after telling us the van was unlocked when it was locked. Then we drove home. When I finally got home, it was 6:00.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

My dipser trap

My mother told me that she had sent me a dipser trap in the mail. Eventually it arrived.

I called Santina and told her that the package needed to be opened and the trap needed to be placed. My mother had said the instructions for setting it up were on the box, but I didn't want to look at the box lest I see some dipsers.

Santina came into the room. Oh good lord, she was in her pajamdras! I would have to purge these off once she got out of the room.

She set the trap, then left. I didn't see the trap. I wondered if she had taken the box out. I pulled some nuts out of the package with the trap, and I saw pictures of dipsers on the side of the box. They were labeled . . . hobo . . . black widow . . . house . . . wolf.

Oh, no! Dipsers! I purged off 32 exes first: adolye, adolye, adolye, adolye, adolye . . .

Then I did the legs: ladoreg, ladoreg, ladoreg, ladoreg . . .

When I removed the box, I saw the trap. It was a tent-shaped trap, behind my package.

Then I got to the pajamdras. That took me a long time.

After the pajamdras, I did the hobo dipser. "Spadolider, spadolider, spadolider, spadolider" . . . I kept chanting. Then "taradolantula" quite a few times. Then after about 400 chants, I did some "spadolider"s, and a meaty "taradolantula" that went up, and six more "spadoliders". Then one that went up to kick it off. There was sweat on my forehead.

Then I repeated the ritual for the black widow and the house dipser.

Then I had to do it for the wolf dipser. I hate wolf dipsers. This was going to be really difficult. I must have chanted "spadolider" and "taradolantula" all day as I made those cathartic thrusts. I finished off the same way I finished with the other dipsers. But eventually I got done.

By now I was very sweaty and needed to rest. I had had two inductors in one week-end: dipsers and pajamdras.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

I lose a button

When I came out of my room at 8:45 this morning, I was listening out for the word "mxss". I heard something that could have been "mxss". Then I walked into the living room and listened closely. The news was on -- and they were discussing traffic! Oh no!

Why did I have to come out at just the wrong time?

I asked La Netta whether I had seen my staef Lakeisha in her pajamdras. La Netta said she was just wearing "thin pants".

I then asked, "Are we going to Mike's house?"

"Yes", said La Netta.

"Am I going to need to close my eyes?"

"I'll tell you when", said La Netta.

A little later, La Netta told me to close my eyes. We must be passing Frosty Freeze by now. We picked up Mike Williams.

Then, Mike said, "I'm Mike Williams. Glad you have you all here."

As we drove down the road, Mike said, "Frosty Freeze".

"La Netta? Am I going to have to close my eyes?", I asked.

"Close your eyes now", said La Netta.

I kept my eyes covered up with both hands.

"Now you can open them", said La Netta.

"CIWP is sponsored by . . . Ralph's", said Mike. "Always fresh."

We got Jolene, and then we were done with pick-ups.

We visited the 99-cent store. La Netta took me to the juice aisle, whereat I picked out something called "Bar-Pac" sour mix. It was a bright yellow color.

La Netta looked at it to make sure it had no alcohol. Then I got some aloe juice.

La Netta took me to the gourmet food section, where I selected a tin of scallops. I looked around some more, and then I saw a can of what looked like iced tea turned over. It mentioned "ice xxxxx" on the back.

"Blechhh!", I said.

"What's wrong?", asked La Netta.

I pointed to the words.

La Netta was at a distance, so I gestured for her to walk up by me. Then she saw the words.

"Done shopping?", asked La Netta.

"Yes", I said.

There was no restroom in this store, so I paid for my stuee. The cashier asked me how I was doing. La Netta said she was doing great, but I made a thumbs-down.

When I got back to the van, I lifted up Jolene's wheelchair, then I sat inside. I started purging off the "ice xxxxx" in the back.

We made another stop.

"Restroom?", I asked.

"Not yet", said La Netta.

"Wet Pets?"

"Not yet."

I purged some more, and then I heard La Netta say, "James?"

I quickly pulled my hands away from my groin. I talked about my scallops, and mentioned requesting scallops for Christmas.

"Do you need to spit?", asked La Netta.

I didn't spit. Then when we got to McDonald's, La Netta told me we were stopped at a place I could use the restroom. I walked out and held La Netta's arm with my left hand.

"Is that the hand I saw in your pants?", asked La Netta.

"No", I said. Technically it was true, because when she saw me, I had my right hand in my pants, but I was actually using both of them to purge.

I had already purged off the I-word, so when I got to the bathroom, I released a mondo stream of saliva. Then I purged off the word "mxss" from the news show this morning.

Several commercial breaks and songs from KOIT played on the McDonald's radio while I purged. Finally I was done. I washed my hands and came out.

We skipped Wet Pets for the third time in a row and went straight to Davis Park. We spent our lunch there.

When we got back, I felt my pants pop. I looked and the pants were open. The button was on the left side, rather than on the right side where it always is when my pants are unbuttoned. "My button is very loose", I told La Netta.

I picked the button up. It was hanging by a thread, so I just pulled it and put it in my pocket.

As we drove home, Rosa said "pajxmxs". I growled my usual growl, and asked La Netta if there was a restroom at the post office. She said no.

I asked if there was a fast food restaurant, and she said the only one was Red Onion, and that that has a giant ice xxxxx cone on it.

"I can't hold it in!", I exclaimed as we got to Ken's hoose. We stopped in front of his house at 1:56, and then waited several minutes for his staff to arrive. I tried so hard not to think about pajamdras.

Ken's staff came without Stan, and they left him off there with Ken still standing outside of the house. "Don't think 'pajxmx', don't think 'pajxmx'", I tried to concentrate to myself.

We made it to my house without me being able to use the restroom at Ken's house. Then the unthinkable happened: I thought "pajxmxrama" to myself, with the "pajxmx" part being pronounced the way La Netta says it.

Oh no! Now I would have to purge for a long time.

We got at my house at 2:14, and Stan was not there. I told La Netta and Rosa that I couldn't wait thirty minutes for Stan. Stan was going to get here at 2:45.

I was clearly in pain as I sat rotting in the back seat. La Netta tried to alleviate my pain by making a schedule for next week, but I writhed in agony still.

At last Stan came. I hugged La Netta for my shower last night, then told Stan about the button. When I got inside, I purged off the words "pajxmx" and "pajxmxs" for what seemed like an eternity. Then I changed pants and gave Stan my old pair.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

A tiring day

Yesterday, La Netta drove us down to Firestone so we could pick up another van instead of the one that's being "serviced". While I walked around to the door of the van, I saw a plastic frok littered on the ground. "Ewwwww!", I exclaimed.

"Why did you say 'ewwww'?", asked La Netta.

I pointed to the frok. Two of its tines were sort of sliced.

La Netta took me to the office. I purged the plastic silverware off in the restroom. Then we drove to K-mart.

La Netta and Ken were browsing the candy section with me when I told them I wanted taffy. Ken produced a saltwater taffy bag.

"There you go", said La Netta.

"Thanks, Ken", I said to my friend.

I went to put it in a shopping cart. "Is this yours?", I asked La Netta, holding the taffy.

"No, it's yours", said La Netta.

"I mean is this cart yours?"

"No."

"Are those bats in the cobvebs?"

"No."

"Do you know what I'm talking about?"

"No."

I pointed to the cart. It had Halloween stuff in it. There was a sticker card with four drawings of octagonal wxbs on them. There was something in the wxbs.

"It looks like a green bubble", said La Netta.

As we purchased my taffy, I told La Netta about needing to use the restroom. "For what?", she asked.

"The Halloween stuff", I replied.

"The dipserwxbs?", asked La Netta.

"Yes."

"You'd probably rather go to some place where you can use the restroom for a long time."

She got Ken and me to the Chinese food place, whereat I ordered chow mein, broccoli beef and mushroom chicken. Then we went off to Kennedy Grove.

Careful to avoid seeing any cobwxbs in the Kennedy Grove men's restroom, I purged off four wxbs in front of the urinals.

Then we sat in the van while La Netta conversed idly with Wanda.

Mon decided she wanted to move to a different seat. "Scxxt over", she said to Jolene.

"Rrrrrrrr!", I growled.

"What did I say?", asked Mon.

"You said the SC-word", I said.

I headed to the restroom. "Tell Mon about the SC-word", I told La Netta.

"Who said it?", La Netta asked.

"Tell Mon about it."

"Did she say it?"

"Yes."

"Do you want to miss John's?"

I purged off Mon's "scxxt" in the restroom. Then I came back out.

A rap station was on the radio. "C-something dignified", I heard.

"La Netta, did that song say 'C-word pie'?", I asked.

"I don't think so", said La Netta.

I listened to the lyrics. They said, "You can have whatever you like" and "treat you so special". I told La Netta to remember those words.

When we got to a stop, I told La Netta to write them down. But she said I should write them down. She handed be a piece of paper (the back of an old schedule) and a pen.

My Internet connection was down, however, so I would have to Google the lyrics at John's office.

I got to John's and told him about the day.

"Wednesday was also a tiring day for you", he said. He had read about it in my blog.

I told him about the lyrics. John did a Google search and discovered they were from "Whatever You Like" by T.I. He read the lyrics and said not only did he not see "cutxe pie", he did not see the word "dignified" either.

He gave his laptop to me and I read the lyrics through. No "cutxe pie". No "dignified". So what was it I had heard?

"So we're going to have a new president", said John.

"No more Chimpy!", I said.

John laughed.

"No more Drinky McDumbass!"

John laughed again.

"No more King George!"

John laughed a third time.

I told him that I hadn't heard of a single person at CIWP voting for McCain. John said this was definitely Obama territory. We talked about how conservatives (and centrists) had screwed the country up by proclaiming that we must all unite behind King George after 9/11.
\
During my last session with John, John had informed me that my payments for my appointments with him were about to expire. The last week of November would be my last meeting with John unless I opted to continue and approve of a new payment for these meetings by the Regional Center. This week, he asked me whether I would like to continue or not.

First, there was the driving back from the appointments. I had to share a van with Stan, Aaron and Charles, and Stan liked his radio on. Stan (and sometimes Charles) would make cellphone calls while we were driving home. Then there was Aaron trying to converse with me. I had to worry about hearing words all the way home. If I heard the wrong word, I could be purging for hours once I got home and couldn't eat my CIWP-purchased meal until 8:00 or so.

Then there was the concern over payment. Was the Regional Center going to use Social Security payments to me to pay for these meetings with John? I hated Social Security and refused to use any "dirty money" from it. Lisa once asked me whether I was going to use disability Soc Sec to pay for my living expenses the way she was and I told her, "I am not going to accept money from the same government that locks pot smokers in jail!" I could rant on and on about Social Security and the government and a citizen's obligation to live fully within the laws of the United States once they had accepted government money, but I won't eo it here.

And then, from a strictly psychological standpoint, there was the issue of my logaesthesia. I had come to John with questions: What causes my logaesthesia? Am I alone in the world? Do I really have OCD -- what mental disorders do I really have? A year later, we have made no progress in answering these questions.

So I told John that I had reached the decision that I would no longer be seeing him. "Did I make a good decision?", I asked him.

He asked me whether I was happy with my decision.

"Yes", I said.

Then John told me I had made a good choice.

John asked whether we wanted this to be my last meeting, or next week's meeting to be my last, or the last Monday in November to be my last.

"The end of the month", I told him.

"It's been nice seeing you, James", said John.

A deadly commercial

When I got home on Friday, I went to get out my macaroni salad from the fridge and eat it. Unfortunately this was right around 3:00 and a Channel 2 KTVU ad was on.

Did I hear "mxss"? I went into the living room to see whether this was one of those KTVU traffic commercials.

They went on with various non-traffic news story snippets.

Then did I hear it? "Canvass and pxke around near you".

Did they say the P and A words? "Did they say 'broke ground'?", I asked, right in front of the television to whomever was watching.

"Santina?", I called.

"Stan?"

"Andrea?"

"Tiffany?"

"Who's watching this?"

"Is anybody watching this?"

I just discovered that NO ONE was watching the stupid television! Now I had no one to ask about whether they were saying "pxke around".

I would have to purge, even if I really didn't have to. I dug my thumb and index into my groin like a quick dig, an electric shock -- 14 times. "Padoloke around", I chanted each time.

It seemed to take forever, but when I was done I could eat my macaroni salad. I've find to find Pia or Stan and tell tem about this commercial. When they listen out for it, they can find out exactly what's being said.

I speak to Lamesha

After no contact with Lamesha since the end of March, I was delighted when I called her new phone number on Thursday and she was there!

"Hello, hello, hello!", I heard upon dialing her number.

"Lamesha!", I exclaimed.

I finally got to tell Lamesha "Aaron says hi". Now I only have three "Aaron says hi"s left to relay to her.

I told her it was an awful day on Thursday and she said, "Well, I'm going to make it better for you!"

Lamesha said, "I miss you, James" and I said, "I miss you, Lamesha".

I told Lamesha I was working on a rock musical called Angst. She asked me when my band was playing, and I told her I wasn't currently in a band. I mentioned that I'm doing the lyrics and libretto, but need someone to write the melodies. She says her teen-age son writes musicals.

Lamesha first worked at my group home, then quit to pursue a job as a bus driver. But that didn't work out with her vertigo. Now she's attending night school to get a job as a history teacher.

I was going to ask Lamesha about her vertigo and her health, but the connection dropped before I got a chance to.

I hadn't spoken with Lamesha in over a half a year. It was so refreshing to be able to chat with my friend again and just to hear her voice. That completely made my day.

Don!

On Thursday I got picked up at 9:36, expecting La Netta to be there, but instead it was Don.

I told Don to take me to Wal-mart to get my juices today, as we hadn't gone Wednesday. He was also supposed to take me that place that I wanted to go to but was closed last time, i.e. Barnes and Noble.

As we drove to the office, a commercial came on KISS-FM. The commercial started out by mentioning CBS. I heard the /ai/ sound just as I plugged my ears. "Commercial break!", I called to Don.

Don changed the commercial to a station that was playing music.

"That CBS commercial -- was that for E-word on the Bay?", I asked.

"Yep. E on the Bay. E-X-E." Actually, Don said a Y rather than an X.

"Was that the first thing they said?"

"Yes."

"Ewwwwwww!"

Don visited the office so I could pick up the $20 Stan had left for me. While I was in there I purged off "Exe on the Bay".

Then I heard Nino saying "axx oxxx the pxxxx" when I came to check the time. Back to the restroom for me.

I was finally back in Don's van, with money. I told Don he better take me to Wal-mart now, but he visited a restroom spot for Robin. Then he visited a park.

"Don! We need to get to Wal-mart and then Barnes and Noble!", I said.

Don finally went to his house to get a wheelchair for Jeremy. He spent a long time there . . . before coming out and announcing that the tires on the wheelchair were worn out. He would need to use the wheelchair at Wal-mart.

Then we went to the first of our two sites, Wal-mart. Finally. Don put Jeremy in a wheelchair and rolled it down to the juice aisle. I held onto the back handles of the wheelchair.

I picked out a Hawaiian punch and an apple juice. Then we paid at the check-out and were out of there.

"Now, we just have to get to Barnes and Noble and we can call it a day", I said.

The song "Bleeding Love" played on the radio. "Janet Jackson", said Don.

"Don! That's Leona Lewis!"

We stopped at a place in Crockett to eat lunch. "Otherside" by the Red Hot Chili Peppers played on the radio.

"I think Barnes and Noble is closed", Don said.

"It was closed on the last of the month, Don", I told him.

"Well, today's the first of the month."

"Don! It's the fifth of the month!"

"Well, we'll check it out then."

I let Don, Robin and Jeremy eat their lunch. Then it was on to Barnes and Noble.

We drove out of Crocket, and Don drove and drove. Einally, we made a stop. "We're at Barnes and Noble now?", I asked Don.

"Actually, this is Montera Bay," said Don. "We're working our way there."

We stayed there and did nothing for 15 minutes. "Let's leave Montera Bay and get to Barnes and Noble", I said.

"We're leaving right now", said Don, as the engine made its characteristic sound and he started to drive off.

"Pocketful of Sunshine" played on the radio. "Janet Jackson", said Don.

"Don!", I said. "This is Natasha Bedingfield!"

At 2:25, Don made a stop. "I see one of your people here, is she one of your staff?"

I looked up. We were at my house!

"Don! You were supposed to take me to Barnes and Noble!"

"We ran out of time!", said Don.

"You kept eooling around!"

"I wasn't fooling around. We ran out of time."

"You went to Montera Bay. That's called fooling around!"

"Well, all your staff are already here!"

"Don, you take me to Barnes and Noble or I'm going to tell Lita!"

"It's 2:30. I already got you here. Just wait out here with Santina before Stan picks you up."

"Don, pick me up tomorrow."

"OK, I will.

"And take me to Barnes and Noble first thing."

"First thing."

As I stepped out of my van with my two Wal-mart bags, refusing Don's help, I saw Jason and Rodney standing there with Santina. Then I looked at the chair . . .

Oh, no! There was Rodney's Dipser-man backpack! I thought he had replaced that backpack, but recently I've been seeing it again!

Just the final kick in the butt for an awful day.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

I can't hold it in!

Today we were going to visit a mall that had a Wal-mart in it. Sounds like a great day, doesn't it? After that was the Natural Grocery Company, Bo's Doughnuts and the library.

Well, then we drove to a park that had police cars. Ken said, "There are cops axx oxxx the pxxxx".

"Rrrrrrr!", I growled. "La Netta, get me to a restroom."

"We're near Vincent Park", La Netta said. "I'll drive you there."

I tried not to think the words "all", "over" or "place" as we swerved over the street on the way ot Vincent Park. La Netta turned on the radio.

"La Netta, the radio will make my purging worse and longer," I said. She turned it off.

At last we got to Vincent Park. I purged off the "all"s, then the "over"s, then the "place"s, then did "adolall adolover the pladolace".

Because of my stay at the restroom, however, La Netta said we were going to have to skip the mall. And that meant no Wal-mart. We had missed it.

"La Netta", I said, "Why can't we skip the library and go to Wal-mart instead?"

"They really stress that we go to the library", said La Netta.

"Then why don't we skip the grocery store?"

"You can get your juice at the grocery store", said Rosa.

As La Netta stopped off, Movin' 99.7 played. "[Verb or interjection of one syllable], little baby", the song started. Three more lines like the first followed, completing the first stanza. I covered my ears at the last one, fearing the singer would say "cutxe".

Just then came the fifth line: "Hoot, little cutxe" . . .

"Ach!", I gagged. "La Netta, turn this song oef!"

We drove to Natural Grocery Company. La Netta stayed in the van as Rosa went in with Mike Williams, Mon and me.

"Do you want to go to the juices?", asked Rosa.

"Yes", I replied. So to the juice aisle we went.

I didn't see any of those cheap giant bottles of apple juice or Hawaiian punch. I looked around at the sodas and everything else before settling on two bottles of Morning Blend. They were 32 ounces each and only $5.34 for the two of them.

Since I had $8 I decided to go to the frozen food section and spend $2.99 on a tofu spinach wrap.

Looking at the frozen food aisle a little to my right, Mike said, "Ice xxxxx".

"Blechhhh!", I said.

"What happened?", asked Rosa.

"Didn't you hear Mike?"

"No."

"He said the I-word. Is there a restroom in here?"

"No."

"Well, let's head to the check-out, so I can pay and then get to a restroom."

I fretted. I spelled out the I-word in my head, my brain oh so diabolically working against me. "Ice xxxxx, ice xxxxx", I thought. Then I thought, "mearc cie, mearc cie".

I paid for my stuff, then we said we'd stop at the library. I told La Netta about the I-word and she said I'd use the restroom in the library. But the library was closed! If La Netta had known that, she wouldn't have skipped the mall.

We stopped at a Subway's for La Netta to get her lunch. There was nowhere I could purge. I gasped as my brain struggled with the I-word. "I can't hold it in!", I yelled.


Mike's I-word started to conquer me, and the C-word was in there rotting away. Finally La Netta came back with her Subway's lunch and took us all to Burger King.

"Kweisi, Mike, let James out", said La Netta. The other two guys stepped out and I ambled my way into the Burger King restroom.

I finally purged off all the I-C-E-C-R and all the "ice"s. I purged off all the times I thought the word to myself. The song "Big Girls Don't Cry" by Fergie was playing on the McDonald's Intercom so I had to purge off several "myself"s. Finally, I did "adolice cradoleam" down there and up there, before starting in on "cutxe".

"James, we're ready!", called La Netta.

"Let me wash up!", I called back.

I had purged off "ice xxxxx", but not "cutxe". I took the ride to a restroomless park in Pinole with the rest of the group.

"Let's not go here again", I told La Netta.

"Never again", she said.

"You've had to use the restroom a lot today", said Rosa.

We were about to drive off. Then, all of a sudden, Rosa said, "Angie had this silk pajxmx shirt . . ."

I growled.

"Sorry!", said Rosa. "She had a silk set, and . . ."

My head grew into a distorted shape, like an apple with a blade in it, as I tried to hold in the word "pajxmx". I tried not to think the mispronounced singular form of the word, and purging that off would take me forever and really confuse me in the process. "Amahzhdap, zamahzhdap, zamahzhdap, zamahzhdap", I thought to myself. Then I thought "pajamdra" and put a "DR" in. I tried to keep my mind from wondering off into the wrong places . . .

"I can't hold it in!", I shouted on the third occasion today.

At last they got me to the office. La Netta left with Mike, as Rosa took me into the office with Ken and Jolene.

I let loose in the restroom. All the pressure that was built off from holding the word in but not being able to purge was finally released. "Pajamdra, pajamdras, pajamdras, pajamdras", I chanted. I did a long ritual for the word. Then I finally got around to doing "cutxe": "kyadolootadolee, adolye, adolee, adolye, adolee, adolee, adolee, kyaeolootadolee . . ."

I got done with that, and washed my hands. Rosa came to get me not long afterwards.

I asked her for my pill. We had no radio on and very little conversation as we drove home.

This set-up is straining me to the limits. We are going to too many places without restrooms. If I hold it in, I might explode and start purging out in the open, or accidentally think the wrong thing and have to spend a very long time when I finally get to the restroom (doing things like spelling "ice xxxxx" out or thinking the mispronounced singular form "pajxmx" to myself). We used to have only three clients in the group and I had the back row to myself, but now I have to share it with Kweisi and if I purge Kweisi might tell the coaches. Back when there were only three clients, we didn't have people like Mike who were getting newly acquainted with the words and still saying them. Without Mike, I wouldn't have heard the I-word today. Without Rosa, I wouldn't have heard "pajxmx", and with only three clients we wouldn't need a second coach. If only we could go back to three clients, if only Stan would give Ken permission to push that wheelchair again . . .

I can almost feel myself there.

He'll be in there 5 hours!

On Tuesday, Rosa and La Netta were talking about the elections. It was Election Day, thus the perfect time to discuss Proposition 8 and Obama vs. McCain.

Rosa saw a pumpkin that was left outside from Halloween and said it was "mxsh". I began purging that off in the back seat before we picked up our other back-seat clients.

La Netta described her confusion over Proposition 8. She said that if you vote yes, it means no on gay marriage, and if you vote no, it means yes on gay marriage. We discussed the way that proposition would have a lot of people voting the wrong way.

I told La Netta to vote no on Prop 8, jiust for me. She said she'd do it.

We were scheduled to go to the mall that day, but scrapped it so La Netta could vote. But the way it turned out, her mother convinced her that she should take her son Jeremiah into the polls with her so he could get a good look at voting. La Netta decided to vote after program, leaving us with no voting and no mall -- how disappointing.

"You know what I think is really disgusting?", Mon said. "That some people are gay. That's gross -- what they do."

"To each its own", said La Netta.

"Well, they're not really hurting anyone", said Rosa.

"I'm glad no one in this van is gay", said Mon.

"Do you know what I am?", I asked Mon.

"Straight, right?"

"Wrong! I'm bisexual."

"Eeeeeeewwwwwwwww! That's gross! Do you put your thing in other boys' butts?"

Rosa explained to Mon that I was a virgin.

We reached Davis Park for lunch.

We were conversing happily when all of a sudden, I heard a cranked-out tune, accompanied by the occasional "Hello?". The ice xxxxx truck was here.

"Here, an ice--", began Mike Williams.

"Blechhhhh!", I shouted, covering my ears just in time to avoid hearing the "cream". "Mike, don't say the I-word!"

"OK, James", said Mike.

Just then, Mon said, "There goes the ice xxxxx truck!"

"Blechhhh!" was my reaction.

"Uh-oh! You said the I-word!", said Rosa. "Mike, Kweisi, let James out." I ran to the restroom.

"I want some ice xxxxx," said Mon.

"Blechhhh!", I said again.

"Can we go home early today?", asked Mon.

"Now we're going to go home late, because you said the I-word", said Rosa. She meant, of course, that I would spend a lot of time in the restroom.

I went to the restroom, and spent the next 20 minutes purging. Another group was there. A man from that group grabbed onto me when I was done.

La Netta let Jolene change herself while she chatted with the people from the other program.

I washed my hands, and came out. I did fine until someone from the other program said, "Clean it up! The mxss!"

"Ewwwwww!", I exclaimed.

La Netta told me someone was in the stall. Five minutes later, I went in and purged outside of the stall. When I was done purging, we were ready to go home.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Lamesha's number

When I got to CIWP today, La Netta asked me, "Guess what?"

"Stupid stoplight!", I shouted.

When the light turned green, and the van moved again, I answered. "Guess what? Ken is at Jolene's house today?"

"No. I saw Lamesha yesterday!", said La Netta. "I told her you really miss her, and she says she really misses her James. I got her phone number, and I'm going to give it to you."

The conversation later turned to Thanksgiving food. "What I like is crisp apple pie", said Rosa. She described the apple pie. Then she said, "with vanolla ice xxxxx on top."

"Blechhh!", I said. "La Netta, are we at a restroom?"

"No, we're not", said La Netta.

We hit three red lights going to the office. "I can't hold it in!", I shouted.

"We're almost there", said La Netta.

Einally, we landed at the office. I rushed out the van door and hit the restroom. After locking the door, I unbuttoned and unzipped my pants and I was doing the ritual for the I-word.

Rosa came to the door and said she was ready to go. I said I was still purging.

She came a second time. I finished purging the word off. Then I came out, but La Netta was using the women's restroom.

She gave me Lamesha's number on a napkin. I looked at it and quickly made up a mnemonic for it.

When I got to John's that day, I recited her phone number.

"Is that a phone number?", asked John.

"Yes," I said. I couldn't hide my laughter when he asked whose number it was.

I pulled my sandwich bag out of my right pocket, and then produced the napkin. I showed it to John.

"Lamesha's phone number", said John. "Have you called her yet?"

"I haven't gotten home yet", I said. "No access to a telephone at program."

"You just got the number today?"

"Yes."

"I was going to read your blog, then I realized it was 2:30. Do you want me to read your blog now?"

"Yes."

John read my blog entries, and asked whether I had made up "The Way He Screws the Folks He Screws" on my own. I said I did.

When he was done, he discussed my sleep.

"Do you sometimes have nights when you can't sleep", he asked.

"Yes," I replied. "I have sleeping schedules similar to those of people with bipolar disorder."

"And what kind of sleeping schedules do they have?"

"You don't know?"

"I don't."

"You're a psychologist, I thought you'd know about people with bipolar disorder."

"Well, I don't know anything about their sleeping, so tell me."

Bipolars have manic phases, where they need very little sleep and are creative, alternated with depressive phases, where they sleep a lot. I explained to John how I have nights I can't sleep, when I have filled with adrenaline and have bursts of creativity, then later I want to just sleep and sleep and sleep, and then sleep some more.

John asked how often this was, and I responded that it was about once a week. Last week, however, it was two nights.

"Do you believe you have bipolar disorder?", he asked me.

"I can identify with the bipolar personality type, but I don't think I have the disorder", I replied.

John asked me whether the medication could have anything to do with it. I currently take three milligrams of Risperdal at 11:00 a.m., and three at 11:00 p.m. He wanted to know whether I miss the scheduled time.

I told him that my group home staff sometimes don't give me my p.m. pill until after midnight. Sometimes I have to ask them for it. And my a.m. pill is often delayed due to needing to purge off a word at program before I can swallow my pill. (I can't swallow until I've done all my requisite purging.)

We waited until Aaron finally arrived and then we said our good-byes. He accompanied me to the van with his umbrella, as I jumped over puddles and finally made it into Stan's nice dry van.

How I spent Halloween

La Netta was going to be off on Halloween, so I requestee that Lita put me with Don for the day. At 9:28, Stan drove me to the office. My poll was given to Kulwinder. Soon Don came to pick me up, and we got my pill from Kulwinder to take along.

"I've got these little bxtty bags of Halloween stuff to give away", said Don. I growled. "Do you want one?"

I asked him what drawings they had on them, and he said it was just jack-o'-lanterns and black cats. No dipsers. I still turned it down.

Don was given directions for the annual Halloween party. We drove together, and decided that Don would drop off a few things he had to drop off, then we would blow the day looking at CD's at Barnes and Noble. In the van, I purged off the word "bxtty".

Don drove all the way over to Oakland to get there, then when he reached the building, he didn't see any parking places. Not one. Nor did he see any of the other vans.

Don drove around several times before giving up. He drove back to the office, and dropped his things off.

Then we made a trip to a park where Robin could get out and urinate.

We drove around more in the van, and commercials came on the radio station. To find Alice, Don started flipping through the radio stations. I plugged my ears and hummed deeply to avoid catching any stations that were doing traffic. Robin got upset and started ululating.

I asked Don whether he was going to take me to Barnes and Noble now, but instead he stopped off at another park.

Then he said he'd go to Barnes and Noble at last. But while he was driving to El Cerrito, the telephone rang. They wanted Don back at the office.

Don arrived at the office. He entered the building. I entered the building to see what they wanted. But he couldn't find any staff there. Not even a client.

"Is there anyone in this room?", I asked, pointing to a door.

"You could see if anyone's in there", said Don.

While I knocked at the door, I saw a Halloween poster placed into a plastic clip-holder on the door. It had an octagonal wxb on it. I shuddered.

We gave up. "It must be trick-or-treat", said Don. In this case, a trick rather than a treat.

This time we drove to Barnes and Noble for real. I purged off the cobwxb in the back seat.

When we got to Barnes and Noble, it was closed. The doors were locked. Don said they must be doing inventory.

Don flipped radio stations again. I plugged my ears and hummed deeply. Robin began ululating again.

I moved to the middle row. When the song "So What?" by Pink began playing for the second time today, Robin went absolutely berserk.

"I think this song is making him angry", I told Don.

Don experimented with different stations. "When I do this, it gets him really mad", said Don, and Don banged on the ceiling of the van with his fist.

Robin went absolutely haywire.

He drove back to the office, where he saw Cliff and Kulwinder. I asked Kulwinder, "What was Jolene dressed up as?"

Kulwinder didn't hear what I said.

"What was Jolene dressed up as?", I repeated.

"I can't understand you", said Kulwinder. "Go spit that spit out of your mouth."

I asked Don to ask them what Jolene was dressed up as.

"They said she was dressed up as a bunny rabbit", said Don.

"Oh, OK", I said.

Don asked for real, and Kulwinder said, "She was normal. She didn't dress up as anything."

I thanked Kulwinder for the information, then I went into the restroom to spit.

Don asked whether I'd like to go home. It was 2:30 after all. I replied in the affirmative.

Don turned the radio off. "Thank you", I said. He took Robin home.

Then, as he was driving to my house, Don turned the radio back on.

"Exe on me . . . ", the radio played.

"Ewwwwwww!", I exclaimed.

"What happened?", asked Don.

"Didn't you even hear what song was playing?"

"No."

"That was 'Losing My Religion' by R.E.M. They said the K & E words!"

"You're real sharp. I didn't hear what it was that early into the song."

When I got home, I spent a long time purging off the K & E words, then asked Stan for a chimichanga.

While my chimichanga was cooling off, Stan said, "James, I have someone for you to meet".

I stepped out of my room in curiosity, and Stan said, "James, meet Nick. This is his mother."

Was his mother wearing a Halloween print? "Is that a Chinese print?", I asked her about her skirt.

"No, this is a plaid", she replied. "Scottish maybe."

I heard Nick making sounds like Baby Shawn. "Is Nick verbal?", I asked.

"No", said his mother. His mother then started speaking about the clothes she had packed for him. I escaped to the bathroom and turned the fan on so I wouldn't hear her talk about packing pajamdras.

I came back out a minute later. "Am I done meeting Nick?", I asked.

"Well, it depends", said Stan. "Is there anything you want to talk to him about?"

"You can't have much conversation with a non-verbal client", I said.

"That's true", said Stan.

I went back to my room and ate my chimichanga. Then I rested until Stan said I had to take a trip with him. I got in the van, and when we got back home I stood outside the door with Rodney, Nick, Bernard and Jason. Rodney had his Dipser-man backpack on.

I spent a really long time purging when I got back in. Then I had a bad trip and started biting myself and banging my head and yelling. Stan came in. "What happened, James?", he asked.

"I saw Rodney's backpack", I replied.

"And?"

"I had a bad trip."

"Hang in there", he said. "We're going to have to make some van trips. We're going to pick up Aaron and take him trick-or-treating."

"Don't tell me I'm going to have to ride in the van with you while you're taking Aaron trick-or-treating."

"You won't. You'll just have to ride with me when we pick Aaron up."

So we picked Aaron up. Afterwards, Stan dropped me at home and said I had Cassie to take care of me.

When Aaron, Bernard and Charles were done trick-or-treating, Stan drove home and had me ride with him.

Aaron was delighted to see me. Stan said we'd be dropping Aaron and Charles home, and then go straight back to my group home.

"Move over", Charles said to Nick. Stan explained to Charles that Nick was deaf. I thanked Charles for not saying the SC-word this time. Usually, Charles is the big offender for the SC-word among our three group homes.

"Do you want a piece of my Halloween candy?", Aaron asked me.

"I don't eat Halloween candy", I said.

"I've got a Hershey's."

"I don't even eat Hershey's."

"I also have a Tootsie Roll."

"Aaron, I won't eat Halloween candy."

"I'm just trying to be nice", said Aaron.

"I appreciate that, but I don't know what kind of bag it came from. What if there were pictures of cobvebs or arachnid life on the bag?"

"I don't have any arachnids", said Aaron. "My container is a pumpkin."

"Aaron, let me tell you something. You may have a pumpkin, but the people from whom you got your candy may have taken it out of a bag that had arachnid life or cobvebs on it. That's why I won't eat any Halloween candy."

"OK, I can respect your boundaries", said Aaron.

Stan finally dropped Aaron off, then he took me back home. In peace at last!