Saturday, September 14, 2019

A New Web Site is Coming




  A new website is coming.

  After many years, an upgrade of grantmadden.com is coming. The good people at Go Daddy have assisted me in a necessary upgrade and encryption, and the new web site will be rolled out shortly.

  Just as soon as I learn slightly more coding.

Saturday, September 7, 2019

The Path to Citizenship - II



  First contact has arrived from the Immigration Department.

  February 2020.

  Set your travel plans accordingly..

Saturday, August 31, 2019

The Path to Citizenship





  Not going to be a happy end of year.

  The Path to Citizenship started today with the submission of an application and the payment of fees.

  With the Daughters gone, there is no longer a reason to not obtain the permanency of my adopted country.

  As a Dear Old Friend continues to remind me, "this is now my home."

  They are not yet convinced. nor am I.


Sunday, August 18, 2019

When Is A Writer, Not Writing?



  When is a writer, not writing?

  When they're running around after other people?

  When they are transporting patients who fail to follow their doctors orders? When they provide medication and instructions to patients, that ignore doctor's orders because it's an inconvenience for them - but they still require the care that they don't think they need?

  When your parents are elderly and they start to revert to toddlers, unable to recall the conversation that they had that same morning with their health care provider about what they can and should not do when afflicted with an additional medical issue?

  And then go about and do their own interpretation of the same advice, skipping medication in order to attend social events while afflicted with a transmittable - but non contagious, condition.

  It's almost like knocking yourself out with a ball point hammer.

  For a writer, it's material for when they come back to the art.

  For a child, it's a glimpse of what the future may hold.


Saturday, August 3, 2019

When is a Writer, Writting?






When is a writer, writing?

When they're not publishing?

When they're not writing?

For several weeks - actually since March - I no longer reside at my desk. My writing is done on a television dinner tray, pen and paper. At the weekends, if I'm lucky, I transfer the writings over to laptop. It is a duplicate process, however, it is the only writing process that I have now.

I am writing in the car, in snippets of time.

Maybe one day I'll have a desk again, to write at.

Monday, July 22, 2019

...and we're back








...and we're back.

In the midst of the chaos and medicals, someone locked themselves out of their account.

I had to wait until I returned to California to get to the email address that I specifically use for lock outs.

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

In Memorium






  The day could not pass without reflection.

  This day will always be linked to another, which will haunt my horrors.

  In Memorium, Mark Lawrence Goodwin, Constable of Police.


There, but for the stroke of a pen, go I.

Mark left behind two children, Megan and Alyse, ages 2 and 6 weeks.

Twenty five year later after that night, I would finally write of him.

I will hold copies of the book for his children, should they ever ask.  


Sunday, June 30, 2019

I Write






  I write.

  I write about my children, about Parental Alienation, about the unfairness in the post divorce world towards Fathers. But until this week, I have never written about my ex wife.

  Not so much of my ex wife, but more of her actions. The actions that she learned as a child from her mother, which she replicated to our children. Twenty two years after our divorce, I look at what my ex wife has done to our children, and see the similarities that her mother did to her.

  The cycle has to stop.

  And it does with me.

  I write.

  I write about my children, about Parental Alienation, about the unfairness in the post divorce world towards Fathers. But until this week, I have never written about my ex wife's parental alienation of our children.

Saturday, June 22, 2019

All of Them






  Some time ago, probably months, I had a Dear Old Friend write of their current relationship.

  "They won't leave me."

  The commentary hit home, because, they All leave me.

  All, are the important women in my life.

  Mother. Wife. Daughters. Girlfriend.

  In my Dear Old Friend's relationship, their Partner wont be leaving them. Good for them. They deserve second (or third) opportunities.

  For readers, I have been caring for my Mother in Law for several months. Another important woman in my life about to leave me. Once again, powerless to stop it.

  My Dear Old Friends comment was right. Might not apply to me, but for them, it's good enough.

 

Saturday, June 8, 2019

Not The Other Way Round





  There is nothing That I am enjoying, about caring for an elderly parent.

  There is little that I am, personally, accomplishing, either writing, or any in other important facet of my life.

  However, in despair, there suddenly appears a signal.

  A discussion that was had several months ago, returned to me laying in bed earlier this week. A possible second major project, broken into three parts, covering three parts of the State of California.

  I hate to propose any matter at this time, the time required for me to care for the elderly parent has to be fitted around the writing, not the other way round.

Sunday, May 26, 2019

Gratefully, Thank You








  Memorial Day weekend in the United States is my favorite weekend of the year.

  It's not the Monaco Grand Prix.

  It's not the Indianapolis500.

  It's not the Coke 600.

  It's the sacrifice of those that served, who gave their all.

  And for my father in law, who is battling, it may be his last to honor those that he served with.

  For those that served, have served, and are serving, the people of the free world, gratefully, thank you. 

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Happy Birthday Chickybabe







  Happy birthday Chickybabe.

  Today, my eldest daughter, turns 30.

  When I was 30, I was already separated, on the cusp of divorce, with two daughters I cared for more than...well, more than my own relationships and career. I had already won two sailing titles and the third would come the following year, but it was the girls that were my greatest achievement.

  I had also isolated one of my parents from my daughters when they were unable to follow through on the manner in which their mother and I had wanted the girls to be brought up. I would later isolate the other parent, my Father, however, he would see the error of his ways and that would be repaired.

  As expected, my Father was a better man than me. I have been isolated from the girls and it has not been repaired.

  I taught my daughters not to allow evil in to their lives, and to keep it at bay. I never envisaged that I would be the evil they keep at bay. But, unlike where I made my own choice, their choice has been influenced by their mother, and their grandmother.  Two people whom were unable to follow through in the manner in which their mother and I wanted the girls to be brought up. Being a little over 7000 miles away and unable to counter any, and all, evils by these people, I was always playing from behind.

  With no voice to counter them, the girls unknowingly succumbed to their evil.

  It is too late for my girls.

  The days are long and the years go by fast.

  My eldest is 30 today. I have been out of her life more than I have been in it.

  Happy birthday Chickybabe. I never left you.

Sunday, April 28, 2019

The Menial





  Some years ago, I read of Hollywood actresses that worked in dinners between films.  Even one of my favorite actors,  Bruce Willis had a job tending bar to support himself between Broadway productions.

  It seems that greatness in the Arts originates from sustaining yourself in the menial.

  For the past month, I have been holed up tending to a parent. My accommodation is a bed, cupboard, TV dinner table which doubles as my writing "desk". With no distractions, I have written more in the past month, than several months prior. I've also been supporting myself in the menial, running two households in absentee.

  Perhaps these are the challenges I face to take the writing to the next level. Much like a game of Dungeons and Dragons, I have to continue to gain experience in order to level up.

  It would have been nice to have a preformatted writer life, but then, I would have missed out on the menial.

Sunday, April 21, 2019

Easter Sunday Parental Alienation








  It is the early hours of Easter Sunday morning. The sun has just risen, the light is still soft across the county, and I am working on a feature article dealing with Parental Alienation.

  While not a "holiday" in the United States, Easter is till celebrated as a time of families coming together. Some Fathers will not see their children, not through choice, but through the circumstances dictated to them by others - mostly the narcissist mother.

  The irony of Parental Alienation is that the Father was good enough to be there, through the birth, through the years, and it is only because of the divorce or separation that they "suddenly" become unfit, subject to courts and ridicule. Most will assume Father roles in other families where there is no issue - there only ever seems to be an issue perpetrated by the mother of his children.

  Much like I did with my own parents marriage, eventually, the child will discover that not all events as told by their alienating parent are true, complete, or concise.

  By which time, both the child and the alienated parent have already lost.

 

Friday, April 12, 2019

The Sandwich Generation Life



  It has been a rough three weeks.

  For those that came in late - I have been dealing with the demise of a parent. Lots of doctors appointments and hospital visits.  Not a lot of time for writing.

  Actually, not a lot a time for personal development, productiveness or sleep.

  Once quoted as the "sandwich generation", now that I have finished caring for my own children, I am now caring for the aged parents in my life.  This is new. Not a preplanned activity that I envisaged, not an act that either of my parents engaged in - as best I recall. (I'm sure that somebody will come out of the woodwork about this and claim that relative X was cared for by relative Y; but as a I said, not an activity that either of my parents engaged in.)

  And I hope, not an activity that any of my children have to engage in with me.

  Caring for the aged parent in close proximity has you looking at your situation and what you would like your children to do. I do not want to be in a box. Nor do I want my children to take time from their lives to care for an ailing me.

  They will not have to. I will see that they don't. 

Monday, April 1, 2019

Porta Potty Notice at San Diego Airport





  Feature story at the San Diego Reader.


  I imagine that the silence from the San Diego Airport Authority is because they got caught with their pants down...and the portable toilet door open. 


Sunday, March 24, 2019

A Second Gut Wrenching Week



  A second gut wrenching week.

  How many boys have been potentially interfered with, when you discover that one boy has been interfered with?

  Ten? Fifty?

  Five hundred.

  Further news from my High School is that potentially 500 boys have been inappropriately dealt with. My graduating class was 104.

  It is a a sudden heartache to learn that my classmates, I was not aware, or did not see, acts being performed.

  I am searching within myself for the answer to "did I let them down?" 




 

Saturday, March 16, 2019

A Gut Wrenching Week





  It has been, a gut wrenching week for me.

  First, news arrived from home of the jailing of the most influential teacher in my life.  Father Michael Endicott was jailed this week for historical offenses against children while he was teaching at Villanova College, Brisbane, during the late 1970's and the 1980's.

  The only victim to be named alleges that the priest took photographs of him after swimming training. The victim, beat me out of a place on the swimming team when we were competing against each other.

  Elsewhere, I write that the priest had brought thousands of boys from Darkness To Light, myself included. I cannot imagine the mindset for these matters.

  The second, comes from across New Zealand, where a gunman opened fire on a mosque killing 50 people. Terrorism, is not based on skin color or religion, but the acts upon which it is performed. There is no difference between the New Zealand incident, and the shooting of school children. There is no place in the world for terrorism.

  The second incident is disturbing as I was scheduled to complete my Terrorism training last November, when i was involved in a motor vehicle accident the day prior to the training. Had I completed that training, I may not be sitting here waiting out another year to cycle through to complete the studies, which, would have opened up access to a line, or what I call, the W2 employment.

  Between those two events and the demons that live in my sleep, you would be surprised how little writitng has been done.

  However, there has been a revision of a major work, where one of my characters was based upon the most influential teacher of my life.

Saturday, March 2, 2019

Go Home To Your Own Country







  It finally happened.

  I was told to go back to my own country.

  As a child I remember my grandfather, in particular, referring to the people from South East Asia as "new Australians". These were the same people that I rode the bus to school, played football, and lived in the military village with.

  I never understood the opposition to them.

  I never heard my father in law, who saw hand to hand combat in Viet Nam, speak harshly of them.

  While making a delivery at a San Diego Hotel I  was approached by the valet - who in hindsight, was policing the public street in front of his hotel. After being told to step away he uttered the phrase "Why don't you go back to your country."

  Inside, immediately, neither of the two staff of the hotel on duty were able to assist, referring me to the Hotel Manager. An email within 90 minutes outlining the incident came back with an "out of office" and I would have to wait till Monday.

  The manager eventually responded, touting the multicultural element of the hotel and their supposed extensive training, but failed to address my complaint. I asked her to review and get back to me.

  A week has passed and not a peep from her. It's as though, the incident never occurred.

  And further on we go.

Saturday, February 16, 2019

To Get The Message





  Another Saturday night at home.

  Again.

  My eye is sore. My foot is bleeding from a fall. My glasses are bent.

  Life is (almost) good.

  These are the challenges that age brings to writers.

  Some people learn the first time. Others, need to loose everything two...maybe three times, to get the message. 


Saturday, February 9, 2019

Goodnight, Google Plus





  In the world of healing, the eye issue I commenced the year with is progressing,  slowly.

  In other news,  Google and their Google Plus platform is going away. Not such a big deal for me, however, it now requires another review of every web post made as the Google + option is put to bed.

  For others, the closure on 2 April 2019 means that their social media platforms now moves across to the others. I use Facebook anda little Twitter - but not enough to link to at this stage.

  Goodnight Google Plus. 

 

Saturday, February 2, 2019

Thank You, First Fans






  First Fans will be aware that the month of January has not been...favorable. Aside from the surgery, sleep has been hard to come by with the discomfort. When conjoined with Dad's health, it has not been a glamour start to the year.

  February does not appear to hold much in the way of glamour either, as the follow ups to the vision and surgery proceed.

  Here's hoping that these visionary issues can be resolved in a timely manner so I can get back to the writing and publication.

  For the First Fans, thank you. 

Saturday, January 26, 2019

Australia Day 2019






  Since the surgery, the eye has been healing - thank you.

  There was one small scare when an internal stitch not removed, made it's way through the eyelid and began to scratch at my eye. Minor impact and resolved quickly.

  Today, January 26, is Australia day, the birth of my home country. In years gone past I spent the day sailing at a regatta. This year I spent the day tending to the wounds of another family member and stitching up some other deficiencies.

  No pies. No fireworks. No celebrations.

  If my Citizenship comes through in the next twelve months, I may have missed my last Australia day.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Eye Will See You





Friends, Family and Followers,

  The last 45 stitches have been removed and the results are:

 - I get to keep my eye sight.
 - I do not need reconstructive surgery.

  A legacy of the Australian lifestyle, I am grateful to Suzi for vigilance of "the small dot" on my face, and to daughter Jillian, who while I was away at dad's, was the voice of reason to her mother when the prognosis came.

  For the Limelifers, starting One Drop Wonder means "eye will see you" in Denver

Saturday, January 5, 2019

Damaged Goods



  The First Fans are aware that, the past Christmas and New Year I was...damaged goods. A lack of sight following surgery inhibited my reading, and my writing. The damage caused by a childhood is now starting to catch up with the adult me.

  Rest assure, that as of today, with the partial return of sight, the road to recovery is improving.

  Still damaged goods, with a slight repair.

  Welcome to XXMVIII.