I’ve received a lot of email lately asking about what the book I’m writing is about… I’ll try to explain it here.
I think most regular readers know that I’ve been writing a book over the last couple months that originally was to be about my time in Thailand. I have had some nutty experiences, due to my own nature and curiousity about life… Also due to some mistakes, some grave, that I made both here and abroad.
If I can say one thing about my life, I’ve lived it my way. I’ve done what I wanted to do… I’m not held back by tradition, by guilt, by fear of getting caught. I love to experience new things – and while I don’t consider myself an adrenaline junky, I do think I have this weird desire to always be finding something new going on – to get into, to find out about… to experience.
After I’ve been friends with someone for a while and I’ve opened up a bit about my life and shared some of the experiences I’ve had the person will usually at some point say something like,
“Holy shite, you’ve done more in your life than anyone I’ve ever known…”
“You’ve had such an interesting life…”
or something like that. Now, when I heard these things over the years I didn’t really give them much credence. I thought – yeah, everyone has a life kind of similar to mine… we’ve all done things that were a little outrageous, different, odd… we’ve all experienced things just in the course of our lives that were fun, cool, and worth telling others about.
I’ve only recently come to believe that I’ve experienced more of these things than the average person…
Couple that with this uncanny ability to remember like a movie rolling in my head, situations that were funny or fun and I think I might have what it takes to write an interesting book about my life.
So, this book started out as a “vern’s last 3 years of misadventure in thailand” type book. It is now more like,
“Vern’s last 41 years of misadventure…”
Highlights of the book…
– As a 13 year old sitting in a forest for 12 hours in 18 degree (Fahrenheit) windy, snowy weather in Northern Pennsylvania with no food, no way back to the camper… my uncles had forgotten where they dropped me off at 4:30 am that day as we began the first day of doe hunting season.
– Details of my two near death experiences at the hands of Oahu’s wicked surf, once on the North Shore and once on the tamer south shore.
– Marrying a Canadian supermodel, moving from Honolulu to NYC and becoming a Paparazzi photographer.
– Giving 80 year old men with elephantitus of the bollocks in an old folks home anal temperatures… cleaning colostomy bags and rubbing medication on a 94 year old woman’s vaginal lips that were red and chaffed.
– A shark grabbed a large trout I caught while wade-fishing in Florida. I had wrapped the stringer line around my then girlfriend who was pulled by her neck into me as the shark knocked me sideways pulling us both. We were just able to get the stringer off her neck in time…
– Losing a poisonous copperhead snake in mom’s yard.
– Driving in the Presidential motorcade.
– Bizarre meditation experiences in which I thought there was a very distinct possibility that I was losing my mind… (later found out I was losing my mind, my ego… but that it was a good thing – not a bad thing…)
– Drinking underneath the kitchen of a very popular bar in my small hometown with my team mates from my soccer club. We ordered steak sandwiches, french fries and drank quarts of beer on a tab… This had been going on for scores of years before we got there. Oh – I was 13 years old.
– Stealing garbage bags full of pot (marijuana) from a local dealer, cutting down each plant with a pocket knife and stuffing it into the hefty garbage bag.
– Riding across a bridge full of holes on my bmx bike as it was under contstruction and closed to all traffic, falling and slicing my hand open, requiring many stitches.
– Having a knife held to my throat as a 7 year old that wouldn’t give one of the local bullies a ride on my bike.
– Stealing the family car, crashing it, fixing it and getting it back home before anyone knew what happened.
– Stealing a case of Molson Golden from a neighbor’s porch, drinking it and getting violently ill (at 12 yrs).
– Being threatened by Woody Allen as my friend homed in on us with his zoom lens from across the street (New York City, East side)
– Finding a dead man in the alley close to where I lived in New York.
– Being interviewed by the Air Force’s Office of Special Investigations as a possible spy for Russia.
– Losing 250,000 Thai baht in Thailand as a result of extortion from various officials – don’t want to say more for now…
– Eating what was supposed to be a thoroughly COOKED scorpion and ending up in the hospital with breathing and heart problems.
– Dying on the floor of my apartment in St. Petersburg, Florida after an allergic reaction to Aunt Jemima’s pancake syrup caused my usually absent asthma to kick into high gear, leaving me passed out on the doorstep of the apartment clutching the phone as the 911 operator tried to get more information…
– Talking to John F. Kennedy, Jr.
– Being threatened by Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgewick
– Publishing photos in NY Daily News, New York Post, People and Globe Magazines…
– Seeing Iman’s new breasts at a photo shoot. Other insight into top model’s lives…
– Meeting David Byrne in Central Park
– Meeting Robin Williams in Central Park
– Arriving just after an elderly man pushed his wife out of the way of a NYC bus and, in doing so was run over and decapitated by the bus…
– Doing a photo shoot with Miss America
– Dinner with Bruce Willis
– Winning the Stock Market Game as a high school senior and flying to NYC first class to have a tour of Wall Street and the Stock Exchange.
Stuff like this. I’ve left out maybe 50 more things that are in the book that make it nice reading as well. I try hard not to put stories in the book that are only funny to me and my family, because I have LOTS of those and you’d bore of them eventually.
Most biographies have a general underlying theme about the life of the person being chronicled… for this book, the general theme is the variety of experiences that I’ve had over the course of my life. Some happened to me and some happened because of me.
I think it will be a really good read… I’ve got 120,000 words finished now and I still haven’t written about my time working in the mental health system with a woman that drown her 2 kids, the young guy that had over 200 personalities that killed his landlord and his wife with a hatchet and burned their house down… the guy who was reliving killing himself over and over and over… my schizophrenic aunt that told me jesus was on her left shoulder and the devil on her right and they were both giving her advice…
I didn’t write about the time I was trapped in my office with two teenage boys with major mental health issues that wanted to avenge some wrong they felt I caused them… I was searching the office for weapons I could use to put through their eyes before they killed me.
I didn’t write about the time the chair came flying through the window of the office in the early morning hours (2 am?) as I relaxed for what was supposed to be a quiet night at the supervised apartments facility for mentally challenged individuals.
I didn’t yet write about working with a spam king to help him send 3 billion emails per month.
I didn’t write about the mentally insane guy in New York that was telling me he was Jesus Christ and who had burned stigmata into his feet with a lighter I guess… Years later I saw his photo in a newspaper as having pushed a woman to her death in front of a NYC subway train.
There are many things that won’t get told, but the ones that I do share in the book should make the book interesting and hopefully successful on some level.
I’ll try find a publisher in NYC or Chicago and see how that goes.
If I can’t find a publisher for the book I’ll release it as an ebook – for free on this site and the www.thaipulse.com site and I’ll make it interactive with photos, maps, videos, everything possible so you can see the background media to get a better idea what each story is about…
Books are SO limited in what they can give… most give just words. Word stories are nice, but having it backed up with color photos, wav clips, Videos, Google Maps, Google Earth shots, songs, whatever, would make the stories come alive a lot more.
So, I’ll try for a book publishing first and if just nobody interested, I’ll go the online route…
So, that’s what the book is about…
I’ve got so many stories that I’m trying to pick and choose which to keep in the book and which to toss.
If anyone knows someone that can edit a book (American preferably) and would like to do it just to get the credit in the book once it’s published – please let me know. I don’t have $ to pay an editor unfortunately and if I don’t find one I’ll rely on my sister to do it… she has a degree in English Lit – she can edit a book, yes? Lol – we’ll see…