True story: dumpster diving

True story: dumpster diving


I’ve told you guys, that I don’t drink anymore, but that doesn’t mean everything I do is sane. Here’s what happened several months ago.


A friend was moving, and asked if I could gather some boxes for her. I said, “Sure.” So while Matt and I were running errands, we also hunted for boxes. Most of you might know, that liquor store dumpsters can be full of boxes.


Matt paid his phone bill, then we went across the street, so I could look in the Holiday Liquor’s dumpster. Luckily I found a slightly broken chair, that I could use. After I set the chair in front of the dumpster and stepped on it, I was able to reach one box. I tossed it outside, then looked for more. It was a veritable gold mine of boxes.


I decided to climb in and help my self. After throwing twenty or so outside, I turned to climb out and realized I made a mistake. I stood shoulder high to the top edge of the opening, wondering how to get out. Ten or twenty years ago, I would have easily been able to get out.


Matt sat in the car with a big smile on his face. He laughed and laughed, but didn’t get out to help. To be perfectly honest, he probably couldn’t do much anyway, since he’s eighty-eight years old. I’m just glad he didn’t take any pictures.


I turned around and started to gather bags of trash and stacked them in the corner near the chair. Every two bags or so, I stood on them to pack them down.


As luck would have it, a friend was in the liquor store. He also doesn’t drink, so as he was walking out, he said, “Jim, I swear I’m not drinking, I’m playing Keno. I SWEAR!”


I said, “Hey buddy. How ya doin’?”


“Fine, but how are you? What are you doing in there?”


I pointed to the boxes and replied, “I’m helping a friend move.”


We stood there and talked for thirty seconds or so, when he mentioned, “A friend at the next table yelled, there’s a guy in the dumpster. I came over to look and said, I know him.” So I came out to see if I can help.


I then continued to pile bags of trash in the corner, till it was high enough to climb out. Although, I still needed help to steady myself on his shoulder.


Nice to have friends scattered through out town to help, when needed.


Later, at Starbucks, when I told the story, another friend laughed saying, “I’ll bet, in all your years drinking, that never happened to you.” I thought, how true that statement was.



Happy customers 11

Happy customers 11


I believe I told you guys, that I sold sixteen of my books, Twilight to Son Shine, at the Charles County Arts Fest, on the tenth of June. It was held on the grounds of the Town Hall in La Plata. MD, which is the county seat. Three of the following photos are from that day and the last one was at a doctors office earlier that week.


I saw County Commissioner Ken Robinson of Charles County walking across the parking lot that day. He looked busy, but he took the time to stop by my table and listen to my spiel. We chatted for a bit about everything and nothing. Before he left, he bought my book and posed for a picture.



Charles County Commissioner Ken Robinson and I, at Charles County Arts Fest in La Plata, MD on June 10, 2017.


I had the pleasure of meeting President County Commissioner Peter Murphy, while he was eating a sub on the steps of Town Hall. Being the uncouth person that I am, I disturbed his lunch. Actually, I think he finished shortly before I introduced myself. I gave him my spiel and he bought my book without hesitation.



President of the Charles County Commissioners Peter Murphy and I, at Charles County Arts Fest in La Plata, MD on June 10, 2017.


Afterwards, we chatted about his background as a teacher and my background as a carpenter. At some point he asked me, “What made you decide to become a writer?”


I replied with, “I couldn’t work as a carpenter anymore, because I got sick with COPD. After losing my job, home and my will to live, I turned to a friend who guided me to help. With the depression somewhat in check, I found a way to go to CSM (College of Southern Maryland) and take courses to become a writer. Now, I write about my feelings and past indiscretions as a form of therapy.”


“Job well done….” He said. Shortly after that we parted ways, but I saw him later that evening at an event for ‘Christmas in April’. He told me, “I read your book.”


“Already! All of it? What do you think?”


“I enjoyed it very much. I feel I know you a little better now.”


“Thank you….”


Laurie and Lori stopped by, when they noticed me at my table. We chatted about friends, life and of course my book. I like it when I can stand between two pretty women. They also walked a way with a book. It was a good day.



Laurie, me and Lori at Charles County Arts Fest in La Plata, MD on June 10, 2017.


I met Patty, while she was taking my blood. Having blood sucking vampires in my life is commonplace as of late. My normal practice is to look away and talk while they’re sticking the needle in my arm. With Patty, I talked about my book. She said, “ I want one.” so I fronted her a book and came back the next day to get the money. She gave me this ticket redeemable for ten dollars then asked me, “Do you have another one? Because Debbie wants one.”



Patty and I at the Old Line Center in Waldorf, MD., after she took my blood.


So I went outside and returned with another book, then left with a big smile on my face. I had a picture taken of Debbie and I, but I can’t find it. Sorry.


Thank you everyone, for buying my book.