The Best Christmas, Ever

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Time for my annual Christmas story.

Best Christmas Ever – 1971
I wrote this back in 2007, for my personal blog on MySpace.
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We were telling Christmas stories at work the other day, and I told my “best Christmas ever” story.  After I told it, I thought it might make a good blog, so here it is.

The location: Visalia California, the house on Divisadero Street, just down the block from the junior high I attended (now called a “Middle School” for reasons known only to the bureaucracy of schools).

The year:  1971   8th grade  Jim is 14 and knows Santa’s secret identity.
Top item on the Christmas wish list:  A 10-speed bike.

I had spent MONTHS hinting, suggesting, begging, pleading, and pretty much making a pest of myself asking for a new 10-speed.  Each time it came up, the parents made it clear that they were just too much money, and I was “not going to get one…. sorry.”  Well, Mom said “sorry”, Dad just said “NO”.  They wouldn’t budge. Not even a “maybe”, or a “we’ll see”.  Always “NO”.  By around December 15th, I had pretty much written off the bike, since, as we all know very well, parents don’t lie to their kids!  I don’t recall if I had a back-up wish list or not, and can’t recall anything else I might have asked for or wanted, but I do recall wistfully wishing there really were a Santa, because if there was, I might very well get that bike!  {Big sigh}
Well, Christmas rolls around, and despite being a worldly wise and mature 14 year old (aren’t they all?) I had a bit of trouble getting to sleep Christmas Eve.  I finally drifted off, and didn’t hear any commotion in the living room all night.

The time:  the crack of dawn, Christmas Morning.

I woke before anyone else, even my two younger sisters.  The sun was up, but just barely.  I tiptoed down the hall, turned the corner into the living room, and stood there in utter shock.  There, in front of the tree, was a brand new, shiny green Schwinn 10 speed bike!  (I know, you saw that coming, but bear with me)

I sat on the end of the couch, and stared at it for probably 15 minutes.  I just could not believe it.  They had so completely convinced me that I was not going to get the bike that I was just totally blown away.  I finally noticed that I was sitting there in my underwear, and I was starting to get cold.  I decided to jump back in bed, so I made my way back to my bedroom.  I laid there in bed for a few minutes, not even able to really believe the bike was there.  In fact, I was so afraid that it was just wishful thinking, or a dream, that I got up, went back into the living room and touched the bike, just to be sure it was real!  I went back to bed for a while, and waited for everyone else to get up.  While I lay there waiting, I was just in seventh heaven.  I got my bike!
That also set the stage for never completely  believing my parents again when they said no…..  but I don’t  think they thought of that at the time!
Oh, and the very first time I rode that bike, later that morning, I promptly ran into the back of a parked car, while trying to watch the gears change!

Good Christmas holidays before and after, but this is the one that I will always think of first.  I hope your holiday will be a good one.

God’s minions spread The Word: I can give up lesbianism!

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goodgodbook

So these packages arrived in today’s mail. One is addressed to me, by name, and the other to “the guy with the truck”, referring, I assume, to my cousin who lives with me and drives a truck.

The return address is a mailbox/shipping/copy store, so I have no clue who sent me these missives. I also don’t know why they know my name, but not my cousin’s. Mysteries I’ll probably never solve.

Someone spent some money to spread “God’s word”, and took some effort to get them mailed. But they’re not brave enough to step up and be known. I wonder if they get full heaven points for that, or if they only get half-points?

I haven’t read the book yet, but here’s what the Internet has to say about it:

I used to be a lesbian.”
 
In Gay Girl, Good God, author Jackie Hill Perry shares her own story, offering practical tools that helped her in the process of finding wholeness. Jackie grew up fatherless and experienced gender confusion. She embraced masculinity and homosexuality with every fiber of her being. She knew that Christians had a lot to say about all of the above. But was she supposed to change herself? How was she supposed to stop loving women, when homosexuality felt more natural to her than heterosexuality ever could?

So I guess I should read the book, and work on giving up my lesbian ways.

I wonder if it has dawned on whoever sent me this that if I give up women, I’ll be…

a homosexual man.

Maybe I better get to reading this book, quick!

We landed on Mars today!

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Mars_Insight

Our latest Mars probe landed successfully today, after a 7 month journey from it’s launch site at Vandenberg Air Force Base. Designed to study the physical structure of Mars, the probe will look for water, and use super-sensitive seismometers to study the planet’s interior. It will drill down into the ground beneath the lander to help scientists explore the mantle and core of Mars.

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I went “Over The Edge”!

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Today was the day…  I rappelled from the eighth floor of the Visalia Marriott Hotel, in a fundraising drive for The Source LGBT+ Center. Joining dozens of other participants, we raised over $90,500 (and counting), for Tulare and Kings Counties only LGBT center.

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I go “Over The Edge” Saturday

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Saturday, November 10, I go “Over The Edge“. I’ll be rappelling down the side of the Marriott Hotel in downtown Visalia as the culmination of my fundraising participation for The Source LGBT+ Center. I’m scheduled for 3 pm, so come on down and join in the festivities as I and a bunch of other folks help support The Source.

There will be a festival on site, along with the rappelling. Come on down between 9 am thru 4 pm and join us as we celebrate 2 1/2 years of community service, and fund our expansion project and our ongoing programs.

There’s still enough time to donate, and you can do that at https://visaliaovertheedge.com/jim-reeves/  Every donation is gratefully received, and there other rappellers you can support, at https://visaliaovertheedge.com/list.cfm

Friday, starting at 4pm, VIP and top earners will lead off the event, with Assemblyman Devon Mathis, Chris Ortiz of the Visalia Police Department, and radio personality April Skye going “Over The Edge”. Feel free to stop by and cheer them on.

The Source LGBT+ Center is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.

I am a former member of the Founding Board of Directors, an Advisory Board member, and volunteer at The Source LGBT+ Center.

They’re going to throw me off the Marriott!

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Jim_Over_The_Edge

I’m a few dollars away from the minimum to be thrown off the top floor of one of Visalia’s tallest buildings! I’m looking for more donations, which go to support The Source LGBT+ Center. 

The Source is an important asset to our community, supporting the LGBT+ community with support, education, advocacy, and visibility. I’ve been honored and happy to be a small part of this fantastic group, and I hope you can help me help it to continue to grow and serve.

My personal donation page is here, https://visaliaovertheedge.com/jim-reeves/

Thanks!

I’ve decided. I’m jumping off that building.

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Yep. From a top floor balcony. Right over the edge.

No, I’m not depressed, or suicidal.

I’ll be joining up to 91 other “jumpers” as we rappel down the (other) side of one of the tallest buildings in Visalia. And it’s all for a good cause.

We’ll be participating in “Visalia Over the Edge“, a fundraising campaign for The Source LGBT+ Center. The Source is Tulare and Kings Counties LGBT+ community and resource center, currently operating out of a small office space in downtown Visalia. (208 W. Main, Suite B, Visalia. Downstairs in the Montgomery Square.) We’ve outgrown our center, and need to raise money for expansion to a larger facility. This event will kick off our fund-raising efforts to acquire a building large enough to serve our communities.

I had to think about this for a while before committing to taking part, as I’m a bit unsettled by heights. (oddly, not while in a helicopter or plane. Mostly when looking down the side of a tall building. That glass observation thing, the Sky Deck, on the Sears Tower? You’d never get me to step into that.) I’ve decided I’m going to do it, regardless. I’ll convince myself by saying it’s a “bucket list” experience, and off we’ll go. Over the side. Nine floors. That’s not all that high, right?

I’ve set a goal of $2,500 to be raised, essentially by begging. 😉  The minimum to “jump” is $1,000 but I wanted to go a bit bigger. So…

This is me begging you for some money! Yep, hat in hand, asking “buddy, can you spare a dime? Or $20? Or $100?” Here’s the link to my fund-raising page, please go there and give The Source LGBT+ Center some money. I’ll be ever so grateful.

On November 10th, 2018, come join us at the Marriott, and watch as they toss this dispatcher Over the Edge!

Just don’t call 9-1-1, even if I’m screaming, please.

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