by Harry Holdorf (first published in the Marin County Coastal Post Online, February 2007)

I’m finally acknowledging (at 60), there’s parts of my brain which don’t work right. I’m left handed. While in grade school, I decided to write numbers to one million. When I got to 33,333, I developed this problem writing curved digits. I also have trouble saying words beginning with e or i, especially at sentence beginnings. I stuttered up into high school, until a German lady therapist sat me down, carefully explained to me how my mouth made the different sounds, then had me slowly read to her. George W. Bush was the commissioner of Stickball, so I’ll blame him for the base runner plowing into me at first and sending me to the infirmary for a week with a bleeding kidney.

I love snowboarding but have developed this nasty habit of falling down at least half the time when getting off the lift. It’s a mental condition; there’s something wrong with my brain.

I don’t relate well with concrete truck drivers. As a teenager, I worked with my brother, Johnny Popper, assembling galvanized metal silos and grain bins in hog and cattle farmer’s feed lots on family farms across Nebraska, Kansas, and Eastern Colorado, summers, during the Sixties. I was always nervous around the concrete truck coming, was no good at hand signaling in the driver’s mirror, backing the truck up, signaling when to stop the grey mud flowing down the chute, into the round, formed footing trenches we’d dug. To this day, I’m usually uncomfortable encountering certain blue-collar workers: tow-truck drivers, muffler-shop owners

If my brain worked better I could probably make more observations and come to some conclusions as to the deficiencies in my mental celestial whirld; perhaps you: brother, cousin, unrelated friend, unacquainted reader, could offer up some helpful feedback. I can’t help but believe we’re all in the process of making general, mental, progress. I plan to live another 20 years, so it’s not too late to do some remodeling. I’m also hoping our superexpensive medical system will step up to the plate and cure my rheumatoid arthritis.

But, it remains, all about me.