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Jim Isbell Copyright 1997 Austin Texas USA Introduction In my 60 years on this earth I have met two men who came near to living the precepts proposed by Jesus Christ. These two men lived the attitudes that are taught by all the worlds major religions. Both loved and trusted all their fellow men. Michael is now dead. Killed by his own hand when he could not bear to live among men who were not like him. Michael was not a religious man though he had been raised as a Catholic in South Africa where he was born. He was, however, by any accounts, a man who lived as Christ preached that man should live. He was a capable man and had amassed the trappings of wealth. He was living a comfortable lifestyle and he was giving to anyone who asked from his possessions. When I met him he was on the brink of bankruptcy because of his generosity. I had known Michael for two years when he came to me one day and asked, "Jim, I need help. I cant pay my debts and I don't know what to do." After a long evening with all his financial life laid out on my living room floor I suggested that he should not pay those debts for which he had offered no collateral, not at this time, maybe later. I suggested he make payments only to those who held claim to collateral that he did not want to lose. His response was, "But they are all my friends, I have to pay them." He left my house with his papers, convinced that he could not do what had to be done to protect himself because others would be hurt. A week later he had gassed himself in his car with the exhaust pipe. The vultures descended and picked his bones clean. Robert has been luckier. He has been protected from society by society. Robert has lived most of his life in a residence community created for people like himself who cannot function in our deceitful society. Robert was born in 1940 during the Second World War. During birth the oxygen was cut off to his blood for a period of time long enough to alter the way his brain was constructed. The result was that he was born as a "pre fall" Adam. He was born without a mistrusting bone in his body and without the ability to learn to mistrust. In our world that is a fatal flaw. Just as Michael, Robert exhibits the traits of full trust in his fellow man without any prejudice and without any conditions. He expects his fellow man to treat him just as he will treat them, with full honesty and without malice. I think it is a sad comment on our society that it must provide protection from the predatory attributes of the majority of its members to those who are the most civilized among us. It is ironic that Robert, a most civilized man, was born in the midst of one of the most violent demonstrations of mans lack of civilization, the Second World War. Some time back Robert came to me with his writings, a diary of his life, and asked if I could help him to make them into a book. After reading them I was intimidated by the task of trying to make any contribution to such a charming story by such a wise man. I will however, try to do justice to the task as we tell Robert's story. Robert has already done his part and I will now try to add only that which is necessary to the story for the understanding of the "post fall" Adam who will be reading it. Chapter I "Thas is a Real story about me has I was a young boy growing up in Real life. I don't Remember My Mother or my father. I was just 5 years old when my father ways in the service and he got killed. He like just 10 day be for he come home for good. He was over in the Okinawa in the service." Robert McGlaughlin Robert was born on February 5th, 1940 in the middle of the Second World War. His father had enlisted in the US Navy before Robert was born and had only been home sporadically to see his son. However Robert does have a few memories of those times. Robert's primitive narrative is the result of his abbreviated education. After trying three times to complete the 8th grade it was obvious that the lack of oxygen during birth had left him with a limited ability to learn new things so in what might be described as a lucky break, Robert did not have the opportunity to learn all the ways of the world that would have made him "fit in." He did not learn those things that allowed him to be deceitful, crafty, and deceptive. Robert is much wiser than many of the people I meet every day who are out and about scrapping for an advantage against their fellow man, but he is not educated in their ways. This is a blessing. "Thay Was came back from a ball game in a big Jeep and it turn over and killed 10 of them. Every boady that I have talk to about my father thay told me that he was a Real good man. I can Remember When My father was home be for he When to the service he hade some hunting dog and he Put Me over his shoulder and took me with him and we stay out all Night with them dog. That is What I Remember about My father he All Ways like to hunting And fish a loat. He all way tried to take good Care of Me and My Mother be for he went to the service. he Was Real good With My Mother even then I new that he love here he Was Real good With All of Us. I thanks thay new What thay Weant to do With there life be for he got killed." Robert developed a love of the outdoors from his few early encounters with his father. Throughout his life Robert has followed the path shown him by his father toward a very full life of enjoying the outdoors, fishing and hunting. Robert's knowledge and love of the outdoors is unmatched by any man or woman I know and it is a knowledge that does not require the rape of the environment for enjoyment. His total trust extends to the world around him as well as to man. He trusts the environment to care for him and he returns the favor. "One year leter My Mother got sick. We were living in Brownwood With My grand daddy And My Mother. she went to the Brownwood hospital thay told us that she had Cancer so she stay in the hospital for a long time. thay Would let me go Up there to see here all time that they When to see here. I Wanted to go but thay told me to stay home with My grand daddy. I new My Mother love Me. she Was All Ways doing good thanks for me be for she Went to the hospital. so one day hours house I Was Playing With My dog & me And Earl Came in to the Room Where I was and thay told Me that My Mother Pass ways. I thank I was about 6 year old When My Mother Pass Ways. I thank it was about 1946 When she Pass Ways." So now, at the age of six Robert had neither a mother or a father. But he had a caring family in his grandmother and grandfather who took him to live with them. At his point they did not yet know of his learning limitations but even without that he had suffered more loss than most of us do in 40 years of living. Robert continued on with his life still trusting even though our more sophisticated logic might tell us there was nothing left to trust. Robert trusted anyway. "every boady that new here thay told me that she had a Real good life with me and my father. even to day I have heard What good People I have been living With. that is What the good think that I Remember about me and My Mother A my father even back then thay weant me to go to Church and to do the Right thanks in live. that is about all I no own this story. so I be going a hold New live all over in chapter II" Robert writes about the end of his first family as the end of one life and the beginning of another life. He always sees an opening of a new life with the closing of an old life and I think this is one of the things that keeps him young. Robert does not dwell on that could have been or on what he missed or on what was taken from him but rather looks ahead to the next adventure and what new paths he will travel. Chapter II "After My Mother Pass way I stay in Brownwood With my grand mother And My grand daddy. that Was the year of 1947. I was 7 year old then. So I begin a hould new live all over. At that time I had 2 grand Mother that Was liveding in Brownwood thay liveding about 2 miles from each anther. So I stay With my grand daddy Boyd for a long time. he all way Was making sure that I was all way Working. He had a big garden so I help him work in it. Back then food was had to get so we got lots of food out of hours garden that we had. One year grand daddy killed A hog and A Clafe And We keep it in the smok house." "so my grand daddy had about 300 Aceare that I help him work own. so we had hour own food that We grew so my grand daddy boyd toughted Me how to do that kind of Work. One day I Was over at my grand mather McGlaughlin house she told Me and My Cousin that she Wanted some chicken for didder so We Went out there and had killed 5 chicken. she told us that she just Wanted 2 chicken. she told me that I had to stay over and go to work for what I did so I stay and Went to Work." Roberts attitude as a child was always one of obedience. If he was told he had to pay for a debt or a wrong that he had caused he paid his debt and went on with his life, not crying over spilt milk. To Robert, work was just part of life and not necessarily something to try to get out of. Work was something to do and it rarely seemed like punishment to him even though he could just as easily have felt that his disability gave him a right to complain. "one day We Was over at My grand mather McGlaughlin house it was own own thanksgaving she had a lot of Pie and me and All of My cousin eat All of them be for dinner that day she asked me and My cousin if We had a enough Pie to eat so We said yes. She had a son and he was in callage he broke his back playing football so she had to stay home and take care of him he had to stay in the bed all of his life. that is What I Remember about my grand mather she Was Real good to me. so I have been liven With My grand daddy for about a year now he wanted to no what I wanted for my Birthday so I told him that I wanted a gun. he told me that I was to young to have a gun now so he said that he Would let me shot has 22 Rum so he begain to teach me but he Was With me All of the time. I wanted to shoot one of Week so he lent me. that was about the year of 1948 I was 8 year old then. so he had me shoot tin can for a year be for he took me hunting With him so I got me a old dog and he went with me every wher I went. so one day My grand daddy asked if I Wanted to go hunting With him so I went and I shoot my first Rabbit With his 22 Rum so he begain to talk me with him every time he went so that make my day. so he begain to took me fishing With him to. Roberts love of hunting and fishing have stayed with him from his early exposure with his father to this day. He was telling me last night that he is planning a deep sea fishing expidetion for this summer and wanted to know if I wanted to go along. so one day Earl came to my grand daddy house and he had some hog that he gave My grand daddy so we make a Pin to put them in. one of the hog mather would let him eat so I make a special Pint to Put him in so I had me a hog for a Pet.