I WROTE A MEMOIR OVER TEN YEARS AGO JUST FOR FAMILY AND
CLOSE FRIENDS. AT FIRST IT STARTED OUT TO BE A LETTER TO MY TWO SONS TELLING THEM ABOUT MY DIFFICULT UPBRINGING. I PRINTED
25 COPIES AND GAVE MOST OF THEM AWAY TO FRIENDS WHO KNEW AND UNDERSTOOD WHAT HAPPENED TO MY FAMILY LIFE DURING MY TEEN YEARS.
IT WAS NOT PRETTY AND IT GOT WORSE. MANY WHO READ THAT MEMOIR URGED ME TO PUBLISH IT. I DIDN'T WANT TO DO THAT BECAUSE IT
WAS HANGING OUT FAMILY LAUNDRY. BESIDES, PUBLISHING A BOOK WITHOUT SPENDING A FORTUNE DID NOT APPEAL TO ME, AND I DOUBTED
IT HAD WIDE APPEAL ANYWAY. TIME PASSED,MORE STORIES GURGLED TO THE TOP AND I MADE A DECISION TO PUT IT ALL TOGETHER AND FRAMED
FOR A PURPOSE: THE PURPOSE BEING HOW I DEALT WITH AND GOT FREE FROM WHAT I CALL THE VICTIM MENTALITY. ANYONE READING THIS
MIGHT WANT TO MAKE A CURSORY SEARCH ONLINE ABOUT THE CONCEPT OF THE VICTIM MENTALITY. SPACE HERE IS TOO SMALL TO DISCUSS
ON THIS PAGE I WILL PUBLISH THE PROLOGUE AS A PREVIEW. I AM SHOOTING FOR A PUBLISHING DATE BY THE MIDDLE OF 2020. IF
READING THIS STORY IS OF INTEREST TO YOU, FEEL FREE TO LET ME KNOW VIA THIS WEBSITE BY CLICKING ON CONTACT ME AND I WILL PUT
YOU ON THE LIST.'FOR PRIVACY PURPOSES I HAVE CHANGED SOME PEOPLE'S NAMES, SO IF AN ODESSAN SUSPECTS SOMETHING, THEY JUST MIGHT
MICHAEL LEWIS MOORE
Below is some of my book, cut and pasted onto this website. the website software is faulty so there might be some errors.
it takes some courage to start a book on one of my more stupid kid's decision but here it is. I am not proud of this moment
in my life, but it was the last act of its kind in my life.
It is usually quite difficult for the Victim to come to see that he is living out of the Victim identity instead of living
from the Authentic Self, because there is shame attached to their efforts to manipulate and (shame in) their history of failures.
But if he can come to see it clearly and hear the messages it gives him, he can begin to recognize that this mask and costume
was never real in the first place, and that there is someone within who is strong and capable and on whom he can rely.
Tommy's Drive-in was busy. Though the crowd was light, teens savoring the last night of summer vacation occupied most
of the seats at the chrome-framed tables. Hazel Woods, a black woman almost old enough to be our
mother, wiped down the long serving counter. Owner Tommy Lombardo was working on tomorrow's potatoes.
It was late summer 1961 and school started the next day.
Sipping Cokes, Alford Smallwood and I batted the breeze with various friends. After a while, another friend, Bill Robbins
walked in and sat down across from me.
"Mike Moore! Where the hell you been all summer,boy?"
I smiled."South Texas, rough necking. I thought you knew."
He grinned knowingly.
I continued. "yeah, I Just got back in town a few days ago. Your brother- in- law Butch dumped me in a stranger's
trailer and left me. Alford showed up and pulled my ragged butt out of a hell-hole this morning. He told me I could live
with his family while the two of us finished high school.
Bill knew why. "Yeah, I remember you guys raised a lot of hell and skipped too many classes when you were sophomores.
y'all were running wild like a bunch of jackasses. Remember, I was along on some of those runs.
He loved bragging on himself. I ignored his participation remark.
"Alford skipped too many classes. I skipped too many semesters."
"I reckon you had your reasons;" He drummed his fingers on the table and looked away, remembering.
He was cutting me some slack.
I mumbled. "That's all passed now."
"Bill responded in his twang, "Well, It sure sounds like you've had a helluva day, Mikey. That's kinda like
going from rags to riches, Bud. Good fer you. You were due."
He exaggerated about the riches, but I didn't argue.
He took a draw on his coke, looked me in the eye slyly
and slowly grinned like a proud possum with a surprise.
Here it comes. I knew him.
"I got news for you, son; it was me that told ol'buddy Alford where you were. That's how he found you."
I jolted. He chuckled. Gloating. "Yep, I saw him right here just last night. Your crazy brother told me where he
left you. I meant to try to find you, but I saw Alford here and told him everything"
Proud now, he leaned back all cocky. Bill had just finished doing that which he loved the most, stealing other people's
thunder and laughing about it, with faked superiority. I loved him for it. He did it so well he drove some people to madness.
It was his act.
He kept it up, raising the volume. "I'm glad it worked out for you, Mikey. I figured Alford could help you
better than me. I got my own troubles at home. You know that."
with that last line, he made himself the hero, then looked around to see if anyone else noticed him.
I nodded in silent acknowledgement.
Friends! God, bless them! Why did I want to cry every time someone was kind to me? I swallowed.
We chatted on, mostly about the coming school year.
Bill was two ears younger than me attended a different high school. My crazy brother was married to his crazy step-sister.
We agreed on those sanity issues.
Alford, two tables away, caught my eye and nodded toward the door. Bill rose with me as Elvis crooned Love Me Tender
from the jukebox.
Bill drawled a Marlon Brando line, puffing his chest:
"Okay, Buddy, let's bust outta this here puke hole." proudly grinning again. Rolling my eyes,he and I walked
out the door together. Alford hung back for a moment.
We should have waited on him. Alford's blue '55 Chevy was just a few steps away when an unfamiliar 1960 grey Chevy abruptly
pulled in front of us and slammed to a quick stop. I stiffened and made eye contact with the
driver. He was a stranger, but who the hell was he and just what the hell did he think he was doing? He was obviously
an ignorant immigrant, or an out-of-towner.
He then leaned arrogantly back in his seat, put the gearshift in neutral, looked right at me with a smirk and said, "Any
of you stupid Odessa sonsabitches wanna fight?"
OH, God! Surely he had been drinking! Didn't the fool know where he was? Odessa had a rough guy reputation. It was like
walking into hell looking for a badass. There were plenty of those, and it wouldn't take him long to find one. I personally
was not one. Usually.
The wild notion of taking out my long pent-up frustrations and anger on a stranger suddenly made sense to me. Hell, I
was almost relieved with the thought.
So, I said,"Yeah. Come on, guy!"
Bill's jaw dropped. He rushed back inside to tell Alford and everyone else. A crowd gathered.
I led us away from Tommy's to the Odessa College campus next door, across the side road. Tommy Lombardo had a strict no
fight zone. I would not violate it. The college had thick Bermuda grass for softer landings and concealing shadows from the
I felt a rush of adrenaline. My anger quickly coupled up with a tinge of gladness. I could finally vent everything on
this crazy nut. In the back of my mind I
knew I was foolish, but here by dang was a chance to let it all hang out and direct it at an idiot I didn't even know.
I planned to throw him all I had in the beginning to get it over with quickly. I charged him, swinging both fists with
all the energy I could muster. It didn't work. I flailed and thrashed, but the artful stranger easily deflected my every effort.
His defense was flawless.
I paused. He stared intently at me, waiting. He was a trained boxer, maybe even a pro, or at the very least trained by
a pro just for fights like this.
That ain't fair! I tried it gain. Same thing.
It hit me hard that I had no chance to beat this guy, so
I slowed down my attacks trying to figure a way out of this mess. It was not lost on me that he wanted me to wear myself
out so he could go on the offensive and beat me senseless. He knew now that I was a no contest for him. Even dim-witted-me
had no doubts about his technique or ability. Damn my luck.
There was only one solution. I'd cheat too.
I had him backed up to the pavement separating the campus from Tommy's. We were surrounded by a crowd that was now quiet.
I really didn't want to do what I was thinking. It
could have serious consequences. I had the fleeting thought to rush him, throw him to the ground with me astraddle his
body. Being a boxer, he might not expect that. I might have gotten away with it, but the guy was quick as a snake and moxie.
If I failed with that plan he would start his offense quicker. I had to keep him in his defensive strategy, thinking he was
tiring me out.
"KICK HIM!"screamed a voice inside my head.
I had to do it. He had the stance of a pro with fists up in front of his face; his arms and elbows protected his mid-section.
He weaved and bobbed, waiting on my next flurry.
I drew back my right fist and stepped into him, but it was a fake punch. He went for it, raising his closed fists to deflect
my efforts. That is when I swung my right foot as viciously as I could, right to his crotch.'
That stopped him dead in his tracks, bent him over with both hands cupping his testicles. Turning away and groaning, he
began talking to stall me.I let him, hoping I had just won. He groaned and moaned and cursed. ""Why did you do that?
Damn, you shouldn't have done that."I doubt he expected an answer. I remembered my own unfortunate encounter with a
He suspiciously appeared to me to be willing his way through excruciating pain and not interested in quitting.
I was right.
He recovered. He was hurt and he knew he had to finish me. I had to stop him, so I again threw my fake punch maneuver.
It worked. I crushed his nuts again with my right foot, as hard as kicking a football.
He doubled over, walking in circles and cussing, moaning, groaning, and complaining. He stalled while he cupped his manhood
package with both hands.
A real fighter would have knocked him from here to kingdom come while he was bent over, but I didn't. Like a tender-hearted
fool, I let him recover a second time.
Now he knew I didn't have the killer instinct. The thought fueled him. He came at me again.
Me? I was on a roll, thinking the third time had to be the charm. I repeated steps one and two, and like Pavlov's classically
conditioned hound dog hearing a dinner bell, he bought it again.
The little voice in my head spoke again: "Definitely over-trained. You're lucky." I told it to shut up.
I made exploding contact with his tortured mangled balls an amazing third time. Had his balls been a football they would
have traveled fifty yards. Surely he wanted to quit now, so I gave him his victory, and me a way out. "Okay, guy, I quit.
"Like hell you'll quit."
He straightened, fully re-energized, with a killer's sneer. Hearing my words, he smelled blood. "There's not going
to be any quitting in this fight."He bull-rushed me, knocking me down. I was shocked because it was a move not like
a trained boxer at all. He was no dummy. This dude had street fighter sense, too. His
impact knocked me on my back, and quick as a rabbit he was astraddle me. He pressed his left hand hard on my upper chest,
holding me down. In slow motion I watched his doubled fist pull back to his ear, taking aim at my face. I could do nothing.
He had me.
But before I finished that thought, I realized he was no longer there. I was looking up at a deep west Texas starry sky
Alford yanked him off me, slammed him to the ground, sat on his chest, and with lightning fast fists beat the dickens
out of the guy's face. There was a loud cheer from the onlookers urging Alford on.
Bill yanked me up and shoved me into his car. As we pulled away, I looked back and saw the unwilling boxer being yanked
out of his driver's seat by some other guys. My brother Butch and two of his friends had
driven up just as it was over. Hearing what happened; they gave the boxer some more of his own medicine before he could
get away. They finally let him leave, but he caught a red light a block away, where an empty Lone Star Beer bottle thrown
through his car window caught him in the face. He had been thoroughly introduced to Odessa, Texas.
At Bill's house, we examined my few bumps and bruises. Bill gave me a cold wet wash cloth with some advice.
"You got out of that mess with just some knots on your head, Mikey. That's damn lucky. I think he was a lot more
than anyone knew. You did things right, for a change, but you are deeper in debt to Alford."
He chuckled, highly pleased with himself.
I just took a deep breath.
With a rare seriousness for him, Bill looked at me appraisingly and offered, "Mikey, you aren't wicked enough to
be a real fighter. You're much better off being a nice guy. Why don't you practice on that for a while, son? Quit the fightin."
"You're right, Bill. I will. Just don't tell anyone.
Take me home."
I was deeply humbled and exhausted. My shirt was shredded but I owned a couple more, and that would have to do. I needed
Savior Alford was snoring in our new well-house apartment when Bill dropped me off. I was drifting toward sleep when
the water well pump cycled on and off. Someone inside the house had just flushed. I hoped my bad luck went with it. A comforting
soft breeze wafted through the well- house window coaxing me to sleep.
It was a hell of a day.