Number 1 - I am not incompetent. I am not a liar. And I'm not irresponsible or "flaky." I am either a frickin' miracle of modern science or I am certifiably insane.
You make the decision. In my defense on the 'certifiable' thing, I'm not a violent guy nor paranoid nor homicidal. I was never abused as a kid. In fact, I grew up in an upper class, typical family. Sure we had our things but what family doesn't. My great grandfather, grandfather and father were and are brilliant men. My father, along with being a city renowned dentist is also an established professional photographer. He devoted his life to his family and I've spent my life trying to make him proud.
OK, so enough about that. Through the years, my mother was certain I was "mentally awkward." I visited distinguished hospital after distinguished hospital to have tests run on me. I don't remember specifics but I do remember the doctors saying I had what they called 'Attention Deficit Disorder.' This was 25 years ago. It was back when the government and the medical industry realized how much money they could make hammering the American Public with all these new ailments and dysfunctions of the human body through books, propaganda, PSA's and billboards. Of course I was going to be ADD. Forget the fact that my IQ test at 10 revealed my score was 100. (*This was Above Average. Genius was up in the 130 range.) Yet I was still a 'kook' and my mother made sure everybody including myself knew that everyday of my life, because I didn't pay attention in class. When I did pay attention, I scored 98s like they were going out of style. The SAT [Psssstttt!] 990. (Granted, because I was "ADD" I got no time limit and a room to myself to do it in. I would have probably done better in a timed environment. Who knows?) My life thinking back with or without ADD ….. Fucking Achievement.
I was shooting music videos in my backyard, (directing my father on camera,) when I was eight. I was playing soccer by nine. When sixth grade came along, I was writing short stories and episodes about my group of friends being in Squaw Valley as Professional Snow Skiers, dealing with relationships, growing up and skiing competitions. By 14, I was a well skilled skateboarder while snow skiing in competitions for the Appalachian Junior Ski Team. By 15, I was shoved into Boarding School for 'Learning Disabled' kids. I would have schooled on the fucking equator if that is what would have kept me from any more doctor tests. In boarding school, I was a collegiate wrestler, (and fake wrestler as well,) lobbying for a ring, (to box and wrestle in,) to be put into our dorm room and through liabilities and other BS red tape… Got it. I invented my own Wrestling Federation and held tri monthly 'pay-per-views.' I also kept coming up with innovative ways to sneak into the girls' dorm… HA! (Just seeing if you are still with me.) I was listening to The Cult, Dead Kennedys, The Misfits, Zeppelin. "Very unusual taste for a 15 year old," a teacher stated. Too bad they are all classic rock bands now, lady. When I wasn't in the dorm arena kicking ass or getting my ass kicked in, I was writing an 'underground' newspaper that touched on Student Opinions and my own thoughts of the rise of "authority" in schools and government in which they had gradually under the radar begun to take peoples' right to think for themselves away. Upon my parents deciding to give me my junior and senior year at public school on the advice of two of my teachers that said it was time for some real classes for me, boarding school and yet another group of great friends I had acquired at a school were gone.
In public school was where I began realizing I wasn't like other kids. I carried on my 'underground newspaper,' to the masses and it blew up like the Harry Potter books, (in Hickory High School anyway.) Once a week, a four page handwritten, hand drown and animated paper was distributed to lines of people in lunch wanting to read my garble. The first couple had a 30 copy run. By number seven, over 100. After the debacle which I will tell you about in a minute, I was pumping out 300 copies like it was boogers. On top of all of this I was still doing my work. Granted, I was only doing enough to get by, but doing it nonetheless. Then, my real encounter with the 'new authority' I spoke of would change my life and perspective of life all together. A kid was expelled from school for outrageous reasons. I won't get into specifics, but let's just say he was a less fortunate kid who had a food card. The public school and Booster Clubs didn't need him. His parents were never going to contribute to their cause. He came to school in the same clothes three days a week and occasionally was tardy because his parents were too drunk from the night before to drive him to school forcing him to walk three miles to the school on a very short notice. I didn't know him that well, but I wasn't your normal 'click' guy who didn't associate or acknowledge people outside of my "rich friend group." I knew and liked everybody equally. Well, I along with a few others felt the reason for expulsion was because the faculty felt he was one kid that didn't belong in the "prestigious" HHS and used a ridiculous excuse to get rid of him. Well Garrick decided that wasn't going to stand and again, being cool with everybody managed to get my hands on some documents that would at least put the expulsion in question. In Issue 12 I exposed the situation. It was probably not the Issue I should have also gotten into depth with sex and what teenagers were actually doing with their spare time in our high school. As many before it, this issue did not fly under the radar. It caused an up roar with the Administration and they impulsively suspended me for 10 days. (A 10 day suspension would inadvertently fail me for the semester.) My father as mad as he was at me was just as mad about the Freedom of Speech and Press theory being negated and it was. There was no slander. What I wrote was all true. I didn't point fingers or attack anyone. I just put it out there. Two days into my suspension, there were petitions, banners, protests and sit outs for the 'miscarriage in justice' bestowed on me. The punishment even made the majority of parents angry and although some did not agree with what I was writing, they did deem it unique and innovative. By the fifth day of my exile, I was back in school and pardoned. (*So was my expelled friend.) The agreement was I could do the paper, just couldn't distribute it on school grounds. I designed and wrote 96 of those papers before I left for Los Angeles.
Sound like an ignorant dumb ass, yet? Read part two for conclusion.
Here is just one of the covers to my "controversial" newspaper.