Drinking Alcohol taught me how to fly
Then it took away the sky....

Friday, June 1, 2012


See. I did something besides fiddle around

Funny thing it is, when some Peeps pray, they gaze UP! What's up there? Are we trying to look past the moon, sun, and through a hole in the firmament, to 'see' God on the other side? Could it not be that great Reality, God-Spirit, is down here, riding with us in our 15-passenger van?

Except that there IS One, and it ain't ME!


During a five-year period I drove a van for a quasi governmental 'Transportation Disadvantaged' Company. My daily run included carrying six 'retarded' Peeps to their jobs in a large hotel on Marco island, then back to their homes after work. We got to know each other well, became a sort of 'family' during those 250 weeks.

Each morning as he climbed into the van, I'd ask, “What's goin' on, Ed?”
He'd look over my shoulder, grin, and announce in his inimitable way,
"Oh, a little bit of this,
a little bit of that,
and a little bit of everything else.”

This came to be our “inside” joke/saying wherever we ended up, a party, bowling, rest stop, etc. Also it is part of my philosophy today, learned from a guy with IQ under 70
Someone asks me what I've been doing...
It is probably none of their business
Another time, when a driver cut in front of us illegally, I asked what we should do with him? Kyle shouted out, “Arrest 'im, Cuff 'im, Lock 'im up, and Throw the key away.”
That also became a slogan...as we spotted hundreds of traffic law violators.

Group “THE SIX”:
How distinctly this memory fades back to me, in brilliant cinematic flavors! During this period, I taught the National Safety Council's Defensive Driving Course. I learned (and taught) that a driver who is becoming tired, groggy, or sleepy, only has to wet a small bath towel, cool it in the breeze, and put it around his neck.

One morning, to practice and see if it worked, I put a nice cold wet towel around the back of my neck. Janie asked me what was that for, and I told her, “To keep me awake.”

Eight hours later, early evening, I could see from way up on the hillside, in single file, my six adult “children” each walking as they dripped with sopping wet towels around their necks. Each soaked towel was Beautifully embroidered,

Marco Beach Hotel and Villas. 

Among thousands of memories, one more story won't leave me—ever!

The Interview:
Those days I carried a battery-powered pocket tape recorder. One rainy, gloomy Monday morning a thought came to me: use my recorder to interview each rider during a given week, play them all back on Fridays. These turned out to be gems, I tell you!

At first, they couldn't wait to hear themselves answering interview questions for a job, military career, singing waiter, dog handler, television announcer, etc., etc. After a time, we got in the swing of Friday “playback”.
They L O V E D it! (And so did I—grin!) and we all just lived for our Friday 'sharing' times, morning and afternoon.

Often we'd pick up a couple old Peeps going to doctor or something. None of us ever told them what was going on. It was fun to observe the looks of bewilderment. Also I got looks of “Are you CRAZY???!!!”

During this time the retarded peeps learned all about alcoholism and drug addiction (many of their parents had problems). Who knows how God handled that stuff?

THIS, I know: It was a period of my life in which I internalized the truth of, “When ya give it away, ya receive it back tenfold.” These were the fastest
250 weeks, I did not want to leave these Peeps!

Now and then I meet one of “my Peeps” bagging groceries or pulling weeds somewhere, and they still remember me, (and I them—grin!). And this all happened between 15 and 20 years ago.



  1. I may have posted this story four years ago, but cannot find it, soooo...
    LOVE and PEACE, Peeps!

  2. I do believe that when you give it away you get so much more back!! : ))))

  3. dude...these are awesome stories...lol...you touched their lives...and a=obviously they yours as well....cool stuff on the playbacks too..haha

  4. This one really captured my heart. People with special needs have a beautiful way of teaching is important lessons in life. My special boys teach me humor, unique ways of looking at things, un-self-consciousness (I think I made that word up!), and being in the moment. I am humbled everyday.

    Thanks for sharing this!


  5. Thanks for this wonderful story Steve - the image of your peeps waiting for you with towels round their necks is beautifully touching.

    Much wisdom can be found in those we regard as retarded and we have so much to learn from them.

    Kind regards Anna :o]

  6. Good story. When I listen, I hear so many wise things from all kinds of people. I used to go to Keywadin Island years ago. Cool place.

  7. this is such a wonderful story!

  8. oh wow steve...love those stories...most of all the one with the wet bath towels..and heck..would love to be driven around by you, sounds like lots of fun and i'm not wondering at all that they gave you that driver of the year award

  9. How cool is that! What a fabulous job! Just LOVE the memories that come with it PRICELESS-

  10. Steve - I shall be keeping that wet-towel tip everywhere I'm chauffeured.....no, I'm not rich - just couldn't drive to save myself!!

  11. You are but amazing-... awesome. et cetera

    Just to let you know I've re- opened My Duality

    Hugs Steve!

  12. Whether up or down, you've lived your life to the fullest. You've had an impact on some very special people and obviously they've had an impact on you. Sweet, loving memories.

  13. Maestro, Maestro. You are full of wonderful surprises. The story of how you connected and entertained and cared for The Six is heartwarming. You were a family on wheels. I loved reading this!

    And OHHHHHHH oh oh oh ohhhhh. Shame on me for missing a very grand event! Happy happy happy birthday! I hope every night this month is like the one spent on your very special day. I come with a large box of special homemade cookies, just for you, which I did not share with Ces at the airport. I kept them from her because they are ONLY for you!

    Love and celebrations!

  14. This post is downright beautiful, Steve.