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Two steps: OJ and Pete


Two steps, is more than the first foot placed in front of the other, a sort of time travel, if you will. Traveling through life’s journeys throughout our world gives us all unique prospectives. Observing the sights and the sounds, as well as meeting new people, or watching them along our way. Just living life, while enjoying the smallest of mysteries. Watching people versus people throughout this journey is nothing more than personal observations, fragmented events,  acquired within a daily schedule. Observing people in their natural state, from a slight distance. Gives new life to an old panting of sorts. Just ordinary people who have chosen to paint a deceptive self-portrait, instead of using bright vivid colors. They have a tendency to over use pale pastels in their presentation of themself’s towards others. Yet from a slight distance, two steps off to the right or left, or just from behind, or even in front. We have a perfect vantage point to observe life, in the boldest of colors. Who are they really? Why do people put up a façade? From our observations we can plainly see the truest of pictures that these people present. No fronts, no camouflage, no agendas towards their wishes, or wants, within their presentations. People in general present themself’s differently when there isn’t any personal self interests or agendas to there interactions. Like a black room, the smallest of sparks appere as bright and full colored as the sun. We who are all to shy to posses or present these bold colors of bright light within our self’s, net alone alow honest expression of them. Only making a half-hearted feeble attempt to hide true identity’s. If only we allowed true self-expression, un-incumbered by the thoughts of only panting that what we feel others want see. If we were only honest with ourself’s. We can then see our self’s from the vantage point of two steps removed from where we then stand in relation to our universe.

I have never met another person, that also didn’t actually hide themself’s in plain sight from others, unwilling to express themself’s boldly, my self included. They take on the characteristics, or just bits and pieces, sprinkled with fictional fragments of others, of whom they once have rubbed up against in life, as the presentation for all to see. So in their giving in this way, they camouflage themself’s as to the what, or who, they really are? A copy, at best! Never reveling the orignal panting, of bold, bright colors within themself’s towards others.

So it is with me then, one foot placed in front of the other, observing people versus people in these journeys. The quiet observer two steps removed that surrounds us all when we venture out into the world. Looking at and observing others, while also being observed I’m sure. Observing the fictional, fragments of individual characters, who present themself’s in some kind of fictional gene pool they have created for their own self-image. The perfect stranger, or your neighbors, sales clerks, teachers, ministers, coffee barista, police officers, class mates, parents, husbands or wifes, and yes even your children, just about anyone and everyone, that is also walking along with us in life’s journey.  So in celebrating the bold colors presented without an agenda, by real people as they appear hidden in plain sight. Just two steps removed. I have created Two Steps. A regular feature of people, and the things they do as is. The small, as well the brief encounters of two different time travelers coming together, just two steps removed.  A day in the life of Aubrey.

OJ and Pete

OJ was the nick name that was bestowed onto this genital spirited person. A boy who was 20 years young or so. He was often accompanied by his mother who was not only keeping a watchful eye on his every action. But was also teaching him as best she could, to his ability’s. OJ was born with ” Downs syndrome “, as well he had a brain disorder. Where his brain would swell, putting extreme pressure on it. After having operations to relieve the pressure. OJ also had to endure insult to injury, by having to ware a football helmet, to protect his head. To relive the pressure the doctors needed to remove a part of his skull and replace it with a plate. Only to replace the skull pieces again later on, when they felt the problem had been solved. The helmet was incase he would have a seizure, or blackout, protecting him should he fall. Such a fall could have kill him.

Because of downs, OJ didn’t have the ability’s to pronounce his words clearly when they were spoken. Though he tried to. The ability to do so just escaped him. For the differences that he had. People who didn’t care to get to know him, or even try to understand, just what kind of life he had to live with all of his sort comings. Instead teased him with name calling. This was how he got the name of OJ. Pete never knew OJ’s real name. But OJ never seemed to mind because OJ Simpson was also his favorite football player.

The memory of these days and events of those two boys seemed just like yesterday, but now years removed with the passage of time. The impact each of those two boys would have on each other, was not known at the time. But so it is with all history. While we are living history it doesn’t seem special for that moment of time. Seem all so unimportant at the time, but then leaves an unforgettable permanent brand burned into the minds memory’s. So deep of a brand that when ever those times are again thought about, the emotions come alive. In that same way, with the same intensity, of the orignal events just years removed.

OJ had that special way of just such an impact on someone. From the first time his mom helped him with introductions to new people. Being a somewhat shy guy, he needed help with shaking hands and introducing himself. Lessons his mom just felt he needed to learn. To the faded views of two boys having to say good-by as one went one way in life and the other seemed to be left-behind in it. This was a good summer for these boys to have found just such unforgettable memory’s, the kind that last forever.

Pete didn’t know just what was wrong with OJ, but recognized there was something. He didn’t care. OJ was like an older brother to him, only having a sister for real, a brother was a nice change. despite the facts of people making fun of OJ. Pete just didn’t care, nor did he care for the attitudes of those people. As for OJ, he didn’t seem to even know that they were making fun in a cruel way. Or did he? If so OJ didn’t let onto the fact, by getting upset. Like water on a ducks back. It just rolled off him. Getting upset only one time in front of Pete, and then he let it just disappear, OJ then just kept on truck-en.

OJ had a mind-set to learn what he can in life, and Pete had the willingness to teach him what he could. Pete’s dad had the contract to put the floor coverings into this building. The same building that OJ mom was working at. She worked in the office. Ordering supply’s and making sure that the progress of work was flowing for the job superintendent. This angle disguised as a mom, took the job so to be able to also watch over OJ throughout the day. The job superintendent also tried to help out, knowing the extreme cost of institutionalizing OJ. Besides! They both thought OJ would do better with his moms watchful eye. So he was more than accommodating to these special needs.

From the first meeting and hand shake, OJ and Pete were buds. When Pete got sick. OJ came to see him everyday. When Pete was back up and about the two weren’t far apart. Pete’s dad recognized the special bonds of the two and allowed their inter action while working. Reassuring OJ mom that he would be responsible for keeping an eye on them both. Keeping them safe from all construction dangers.

During just one of those times Pete’s job was to spread some glue for glueing down some carpet. OJ wanted to learn how to do it as well. OJ’s mom was terrified at the thought. But Pete’s dad convinced her as long as he has some old clothes on, that also didn’t matter if glue got on them, he would supervise the glueing. Everything would be Okay. One would think that downs people can’t do much of anything for themself’s. But after all they are people too! People that wish to challenging themself’s, feeling with every success the same sence of accomplishment, self-worth, and a renewed sence of a can do attitude created within them self’s. Is that not powerful? The same power we all strive for. Discovering new things through our self exploration, and expanding our personal potential? OJ, just as all people, just want to have sence of usefulness added to his existence, being able to contribute. With spreading glue he had all of that. Spreading glue with his buddy was an added bonus to his experiences in life. OJ’s joy expressed, within his ginormous smiles, while working with his bud. Smiles while together never seemed to go away. One could just say a real happy-go-lucky type of experience for OJ.

OJ was careful with the glue, listened to every instruction given while trying his best. His best was extremely slow compared to Peter’s experience of doing it. But each time the spreading needed to be done he finished a little more in the same time. In short he was gaining speed, getting better with each hour that went by. By the end of the day OJ was beaming with pride, being able to look at all of the newly finished carpet that was installed. Despite the sticky glue he had on himself, and clothes, he knew he had done his best. When mom showed up to pick him up. He was all to willing to shar the glue, and wanted to give her a hug.

The next day OJ came to work all prepared to do more glue. This time he remembered when he forgot a spot of glue, you don’t try to walk out onto the glued surface. It was extremely slippery! On day two, he didn’t get near the glue on himself. In fact day after day he got less and less on himself. After 13 weeks of working with Pete he got as good with keeping the glue off himself as Pete was able to. But still need to work on his speed of glueing. At least those were his goals in his thoughts.To both of the boys working together was just the bomb. The best of times, that didn’t seem like work at all to them.

During working hours the boys were working together most of the times. After work the boys were inseparable. Weather they were takeing walks to the park together, or playing some game they made up. They always were smiling and laughing. The odd couple, to say the least. One about 6 foot tall, and the other barely 5 foot tall. One with the football helmet on, and the other without. From a distance they looked like two boys looking for others boys to play a game of football with, just one boy had more equipment to play the game.

At times the two boys could be seen skipping rocks off the surface of the water of a pond behind the building project. OJ had trouble in skipping rocks, but never stopped trying. Pete seemed to be a source of never-ending encouragement that OJ welcomed. Weeks went by untill the day came when it happened. OJ found the perfect rock. Flat, round, and smooth. He took his best shot at throwing it. The rock launched from his hand towards the water, striking the surface of the water, then relaunched back off the surface. 4 skips untill it to sink beneath the water’s surface. OJ threw his hands up into the air and let out a scream of success. For him it was as good as 50,000 people cheering in a football stadium, with a defining roar of cheers, after the winning goal was scored. It was the greatest experience of OJ life to date! Pete also cheered for him, as if it was the most unbelievable play of all time. Both of the boys were slapping each others backs and yelling out extra loud cheers, while dancing their victory dance. For the first rock skipping that OJ had ever done. It was indeed the most unbelievable play of all time!

These two boys shared 13 weeks of live together as if it was a life times worth. Both made an impact on the others life and gave each other the gift of memories for a life time. All though OJ didn’t have the same gift of time, it was this time spent with his friend Pete, that left him feeling like he was just one of the regular guys. The most valued thing in his life.

Years later Aubrey had the off-chance to run into Pete, they both reminisced for a while about those times. Both of them had the biggest smiles on their faces, with the thoughts of different events.

” Hay Aubrey! Do you remember OJ skipping rocks?” Pete said. While reenacting the way OJ was throwing rocks, using an imaginary rock in his hands. He when through the motions of throwing as OJ did.” The way he surprised me when that rock lifted off the surface of the water in his first skip. Well that was priceless!” Pete began to reenacting the celebrations by throwing his hands into the air.

” Ya. That was quite the picture I got from you boys. Wished I had video of it! ” Aubry said. ” Sure was something else.” Aubrey slapped Pete on the back, as if to join into the celebration.

Pete wiped a tear from the corner of his eye, as he sat down again. “You know the best memories of life are the ones that bring back the power of that moment being remembered. With the same emotions and the same intensity of them. The same as when it first happens. Even when it has been a life times worth of time ago!” Pete wiped another tear from the other eye. Then raised his glass and said. “Cheers to those memories. May they be worth more than gold, may they comfort us when we remember them as we get old!”

Aubrey raised his glass to meet Pete’s and said. ” Cheers! To a life well lived. To positive influences, to tears of joy, and the knowledge that we did our best without regret. Never having to ask ourself’s. What if?”

Aubrey quickly noted in his note-book with the memories of the event still fresh in his mind. ” We truly never know just how we impact others in life. Untill we look back through it, using the eye-sight of what others must then see in our actions. In the same way that I saw in OJ and Pete” Is this the views that people have when just two steps removed?


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