From my previous blog post, I wrote about the goal, to create a sock company, The Bobby’s Socks Company. The fact that my novels are connected by my interest in Epi genetics and life trauma, trauma that can literally alter our gene instructions. My other professional career was in the medical malpractice insurance business. I loved the business. I got to meet an amazing array of really, really bright people, and to see with my own eyes raw human suffering. In part, I know things that I really wish I did not know. But then again, I can write entertaining novels that inform. I think literature should be about issues that our bigger than us, to create characters that the reader can connect with and in their own mind say, “that’s how I felt”. In part, I use a pen name to create a space between me and the character, Bobby, from Bobby’s Socks. The book is fiction, but in part, there are elements that I felt as a teenager and young adult. In Fishing for Light, I created Eddie Wilcox. And Eddie experienced a life trauma that changed him.
My first novel, Bobby’s Socks, was a tough ride. It is not an easy book to read. The book is well written, but the story is raw, and straight forward. I was not sure I would even publish the book, but from my wife’s encouragement, I went for it. It was the most amazing moment of my life, I let all the negative feelings, go away. I was not afraid any more. I highly recommend to anyone reading this blog post, to let all that ‘whatever’ go away. Believe it or not, I tend to be rather shy, and reserved. It is easy to build a business, because you can hide. But art is a different matter, if you allow your thoughts to be expressed on the page, they can never be taken back. So, I decided to share a key excerpt from Fishing for Light, it is the moment that Eddie’s life changed. The book is a satire, and it is intended to be a bit wacky. But underneath the story, there is real science, and real human suffering that we all experience.
Wednesday, December 28, without any warning, Edward’s oceans powerful cellular currents pushing him to become special became dead breathless.
It was after nine o’clock, the emergency room waiting area was crowded with colorful tattooed Gun & Knife Club members. A few illegal human aliens were being monitored nearby by bored radio squawking law enforcement. No one watched the mindless television spew unreality reruns, a few flicked through well-worn magazines. Every four minutes, Bobby Humperdinck and his crazed chimp tempted fate with another used car commercial. A few honest souls cried, or prayed for mercy as they changed their social networking status from married to single. Eddie and his mother hurriedly scooted past them and up to the ER night desk. A night nurse immediately ushered them past the swinging double doors and behind a pale blue curtained off area. She sat them down, and offered them water.
The nurse immediately guided Dr. Noah over to them. He was a long-limbed man with an angular face, he wore surgical greens and a staff coat with his name stenciled in powder blue above the hospital emblem. He sat down and pulled the curtain behind him as he fumbled with the patient chart.
“Mrs. Wilcox, I suspect,” Dr. Noah said. He glanced up at Eddie who stood behind his mother gripping her shoulders. Eddie thought he had a face that was no longer curious about life.
“He’s our son,” Sophia said.
“I think your husband had a significant athermanous plaque build-up, my instinct tells me a genetic defect, it occluded his coronary arteries,” Dr. Noah said. He paused as he continued to fumble with the patient chart. Eddie noticed his father’s name written in the panel in black block letters.
Next door, Eddie saw his father’s pure white cotton dress shirt, red club tie and wing tip dress shoes stuffed inside a plastic storage container. Atop a metal gurney, he thought he saw one of his father’s motionless naked feet peeking out from underneath a stark white hospital sheet. He must be tired or heavily drugged, Eddie thought.
“Sorry to say, we know he bit into an apple, then he likely felt like a thunderbolt smacked him from inside his chest. It was likely an extremely quick, flood like sensation,” Dr. Noah said. He closed the metal patient chart. He leaned his elbows on his knees. He talked slow and methodical as he stared directly into Sophia’s eyes.
“No,” Sophia whispered. She shook her head. She stared down at the cold tile floor. “This can’t be-”
Dr. Noah reached over to grasp Sophia’s shaking hands.
“We worked on him for several hours, I did everything I could, I did everything my training has taught me. I’m sorry, he’s past away.” He shifted on the hard plastic seat. He clenched his jaw. “I wish I had better news.”
“No, no, he’s not even forty,” Sophia said. She whispered as her lower lip trembled. “We were supposed to grow old together.”
Sophia took in a deep, exaggerated breath. For Eddie, his mother’s wisdom disappeared that night into another world, a world of her own. The spark in her eyes dimmed, as she retreated into a fantasyland of cotton candy and bunny rabbits where no one ever faced reality.
As Edward’s face flushed scarlet he stumbled away from his mother, sensing he floated alone in a silent blurred surreal space. He pushed past the curtain, he stumbled forward, but an angelic nurse gently gripped his waste; she hugged him and guided him to a cushioned chair. As he blankly stared down at the floor tiles, his mind was traumatized that exact moment, as if a nuclear weapon detonated within his brain causing thermal radiation to incinerate all the positive particles within Eddie’s soul. All the magical epigenetic dust Professor Quan had lovingly formulated that Captain Lovins had sprinkled across Eddie’s newborn lips tragically altered. His DNA had biochemically switched on the wrong protein instructions.
Eddie’s jalopy coasted in front of a gas pump at a dingy mini mart. He was not like most people; he was quite aware his internal engine lacked a spark as if a brand new high-performance engine hidden away inside a silent burley tobacco barn. He thought it a curse that he was self-aware that he was a loser. The humid night air lathered his face, he dabbed dry his faint tears. The terse odor of gasoline tingled inside his nose. After a redneck teenager driving a chrome-infested four-wheeler, gunned his souped-up engine. Eddie danced back into reality to dodge drips of gas falling toward the bottom of his khaki pants leg.
“Come on,” Eddie said, “get your shit together.” He slipped his debit card into the payment slot. He got back into his car.