The Best Christmas, Ever

Leave a comment

xmasbike71crop

Time for my annual Christmas story.

Best Christmas Ever – 1971
I wrote this back in 2007, for my personal blog on MySpace.
******
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.

I went “Over The Edge”!

Leave a comment

0drp-1dv1-14rb1-xa

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.

More

I go “Over The Edge” Saturday

Leave a comment

Jim_Over_The_Edge

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!

Leave a comment

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.

Leave a comment

vis_Marriott

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.

Audio comments, City Council meeting May 21 2018 – Speaker lambastes city, LGBT group

1 Comment

citycouncil

“THAT’S CHILD PORNOGRAPHY!”

Well, no, it’s not. Not even close. Gabriel Jacquez spoke at the public comments section of the May 21, 2018 Visalia City Council meeting, and took the city to task for allowing our event, Pride Visalia, to take place. During his comments, he drew a really strange connection between drag queens dancing and child porn. Listen to the recording above to see if you can follow his…  “logic”. I can’t.

Immediately following his remarks are mine, given a few minutes after his. I had planned on simply giving a short presentation to the Council about Pride Visalia, and then invite them to attend.

That got thrown out the window after I heard his remarks. I tried to address Mr. Jacquez’s remarks as best I could, without turning my three minutes into a complete mish-mash.

I’m glad it worked out the way it did, it would have been unfortunate had I gone first, and then Mr. Jacquez following. In that scenario, I would not have been able to respond.

Sorry for the poor quality of the image. That’s me, at the podium, in the upper right hand corner of the image. It’s a screen capture of a phone video, which was recording a video feed that was playing on yet another phone. A copy of a copy of a copy of a copy.

Sorry that the audio quality is not the best, either. It’s also a copy of a copy, especially that last few seconds.

You can hear the (almost) complete audio at the article by the Visalia Times Delta, here. My comments are attached to the video at the top of the article, Mr. Jacquez’s in the video further down the page. At some point in the future, the City of Visalia should have an audio recording of the meeting, with the full comments. (only a few seconds have been cut, however. Mostly us introducing ourselves, and possibly a bit at the end of Mr. Jacquez’s remarks.)

All in all, a most upsetting Council meeting for me.

Melatonin induced dreams – the latest

Leave a comment

melatonin_dreamsOne of the side effects of taking Melatonin to help you sleep is “intense dreams”. I’m discovering that “intense” for me means “really weird”, and that I remember them once I awaken. Here’s last night’s strange tale.

It starts with me sitting in my truck, a ’92 Ford Ranger, in the parking area adjacent to, but not at, a set of gas pumps at a convenience store. The engine is running. I almost never do that, just sit somewhere (other than a drive-thru) with the engine running.

ranger_w_camper

Not really my truck.

For some reason, my truck has a camper shell. In reality, my truck does not. I’ve never even considered putting a shell on the truck. Anyway, sitting in the truck, engine running.

So far, not a really weird dream. But it starts veering into, if not weird, then at least strange. And I remember it, when I usually don’t, so there’s that.

Sitting in the gas station parking lot, engine running, when a woman of indeterminate age, possibly early 20’s, maybe early 30’s, comes roaring up to the gas pumps and screeches to a stop, in an older, mid-size heap of a car. She’s dressed like…  well, there’s no real polite way to say it…

More

Older Entries

%d bloggers like this: