“If a Great Wave Shall Fall” 
Sorry whatever your name is. Did my best.
The jury was polled. We could tell there were a few who weren’t happy about the outcome, but had most likely caved on a technicality. As mentioned earlier, it was a question of those twelve seconds, though exactly why the conflicting order issue got sidelined, I don’t know.
We sat there crestfallen and waited for the judge to thank and dismiss the jury. Then came scheduling for the sentencing hearing. The judge wanted the second week in April as I recall, about a month away. Peter’s attorney had a federal murder case to defend and tried to move it. The judge suggested leaving it there and seeing if his other case stuck to the schedule.
I went outside, put on my sunglasses and started preparing for whatever came next. I was unemployed and single. My partner had agreed to let me stay and move out after taxes were due mid-April. Besides my own income, there was my comic book publishing company that I had incorporated. We ran at a loss, of course, printing so many issues. As I motioned previously, it was really a stepping stone to writing for TV.
I suppose I expected us to reconcile at some point soon anyway, so didn’t exactly expect that move to happen. The thought of moving to Port Huron to coordinate visitations for Peter’s lady occurred to me, as well as visiting Pete inside as often as he could stand the sight of me.
As you might imagine, I became quite emotional. The worst case scenario had just come to pass it seemed. I was out front of the courthouse and waited to say goodbye.
I posted to Peter’s blog what had happened. The quote at top was part of it I think.
Before Peter, his attorney, and the rest of the Canadian contingent walked out, the accusing guard, the lady guard who stayed for the trial and the other male guard walled by. The accuser and the young lady were also wearing sunglasses. Were also in tears. Yes. Believe it or not. The third guard was not and seemed utterly bewildered by this. The look on his face, “Wait. I thought we hated that Watts guy. Him going to jail is supposed to be good, right?”
Here’s where it gets confusing for me personally.
As they walked by, I said, “Guys…it’s okay. I have family who are cops…soldiers. Just doing your job. I understand. It’s not personal.”
The accuser said, “Oh, no, it never is. You’re a friend of Peter Watts or something?”
“Yeah, something like that.”
There was a great deal of subtext there in the tone. We were both sad, I assure you, that it turned out the way it did. Among the other things I touched on, we had all turned the jury into the enemy for taking so long. Additionally, I think the truth, that this was a man’s life being controlled here over a border stop, finally sunk in with these kids (whatshisname with the walrus mustache notwithstanding).
So. Was I faking it? Acting? Was I lying? Playing the guards?
Or was I serious?
To tell you the truth, I don’t know. It’s incredibly tempting to say that I knew exactly what I was doing, that it was planned or masterfully improvised.
Certainly I had been thinking that some kind of reconciliation might end the whole thing. But why now? All that was left was the sentence. There was talk of up to two years with a possibility of a third over a technicality.
I eventually ran into Peter and the others. We discussed the possibility of my coming back in April.
“I’m planning on possibly being in California next month. Being an American and no sense of geography, I have no idea how far that is.”
“About 2,000 miles,” his attorney offered.
“Two thousand miles…?”
It was after leaving them that I realized I was out of gas and that my checking account for which the debit card worked was low. Called the ex. The answer in a roundabout way was “f— off.” I went back to the Come Sail Away Cafe to say goodbye to the ladies there and try to figure out how to transfer money from the account with some money in it for which the debit card did not work to the empty one for which it did.
There, the ladies let me use their laptop to take care of the banking business.
And they cried when I told them the verdict.
After that was done, I was off. Stopped off at Stratford to see the big Shakespeare theater.
Then back to the road, Brooklyn, living with someone who wishes me dead, and taxes (note the two certainties there).
It was a dark drive back to New York. You can read about it in the border crossing entries, how the guard at Buffalo was so disgusted when he asked why I had been there and the outcome of the case that he simply aborted the entry search and let me go.
There was the stop at the roadside diner where a truck driver about three times my size was so frightened of me he babbled on about Ted Bundy and Vlad Tsepesh to some other stranger in the diner. His hands shook and his brow beaded with sweat (maybe he was using coke or speed to stay awake on a long drive). But the size difference, obvious to me, made no difference to him. He was sure I was going to murder him later.
There were still some letters to write as well. Back to NY to think about them.
I wound up being kicked out well before I could do my taxes. It was an imperative by the ex who could not put into words apart from, “You have no idea how relieved I am that you are leaving.” And I was off to Minneapolis.
Still thinking I had colon cancer of some sort.
April. I can make it to April.
1 We also spoke of the quantum mechanics explanation for some giant wave sightings and ship losses that could not be explained by Newtonian physics models. Scientists had said over and over that waves as high as 200′ were impossible.
What was happening was, three waves were overlapping. Three fifty forty waves met together and created a 100′ wave.
But wait. How then did they report 200′ waves?
Because they were in the trough of the wave. 100′ above sea level when you are 100′ below sea level…let’s see, carry the one…right, 200′.
Soon after moving to Minneapolis I became fond of The Calling’s “Wherever You Will Go.” The title of this chapter is taken from that song and as a reminder of that discussion, that sometimes rock bottom is a matter of perspective, place and time. (It’s also relative–nod to Einstein–because once you think you’ve hit your limit and things get worse, you realize that wasn’t actually your limit).
I even once posted link to it on the blog (removed from NSA subcontractor “We Love Evil” Google’s YouTube since)…
…not having any idea beyond the psychopaths in my government who was reading it.
When I decided to make some of the more crazier sounding posts on the blog private, that one went private as well. The trend of bad things happening to people I occasionally said something nice about had been enough to make me think twice about doing that.
Here’s what happened last week to Adam Band, the lead singer of The Calling about forty-five miles due west of me:
Port Huron Times Herald, “‘The Calling’ lead singer Alex Band reports being kidnapped, robbed in Lapeer”, AP, August 19, 2013:
And a spinal fracture, three broken teeth and stitches.
October 11, 2013 update:
Link above is now broken. It does not appear in the paper’s archive either (possibly because it was an AP article).
ABC, “Singer Says He Was Abducted, Beaten, Left for Dead”, Linsey Davis and Roger Lee, August 20, 2013:
AP, “The Calling’s Singer Says Was Attacked in Michigan”, August 19, 2013: