Although both Oedipus and the children of Oedipus were burdened with the sins of their fathers, they were all obliged to accept responsibility for their own actions, and not blame their shortcomings on their parents.Dream of: 27 June 1986 (2) "Divorce Proceeding"
My father and my mother were in the process of obtaining a divorce. I accompanied them to court one day for a hearing in front of a lady judge. My mother had a lady lawyer working for her.
My father was first put on the witness stand and questioned; then my mother was questioned on the stand. My mother seemed humble while my father seemed haughty and proud. The judge was rather hard on my father. I thought someone should point out that when my brother Chris had had muscular dystrophy, my mother – not my father – had taken care of Chris. I had never seen my father feed Chris, but I had seen my mother feed him many times. Finally the judge made some preliminary determinations about the divorce.
I left the court and went to the House in Patriot, where I found my paternal step-grandfather Clarence, and I began telling him about some things which were going to be cleaned out of the attic of the House. An old 1955 encyclopedia was up there. I thought Clarence might want the encyclopedia, even though it might not be any good. I decided to go up in the attic to scrounge around for it.
I headed for the attic and took a dog, which seemed like Clarence's dog, Mike, with me. Once we were in the attic, the dog sniffed around until it turned up a mouse which it began chasing. Finally the dog caught the mouse and began playing with it. A large hole was in the attic where the floor was missing. The dog threw the mouse through the hole and it fell into the downstairs living room, directly below the attic. I walked toward the hole, failed to see it and started falling through. I caught myself before I went all the way through and I let myself drop down into the living room.
There I found my mother and her lady lawyer talking about what had happened at court. They handed me the papers which the judge had signed and my mother wanted to know what I thought. It appeared to me there hadn't yet been a division of the property and that much work apparently still remained for the lawyers to do.
My mother appeared rather haggard. I felt she somewhat deserved that. She wasn't completely innocent in the divorce and she had to accept some blame and responsibility herself.
One paper said something about my father's having 50 employees. I knew he had some employees in his insulation factory, but I didn't think there were that many.
I asked the lawyer what she thought. She said my mother would probably get the New Boston House and that there would probably be a 50/50 split of the property. My mother would also receive a third of my father's net income for the rest of both their lives, but my father would still be able to pay his employees as a business expense before any determination of net income. I found it hard to believe that the judge would grant my mother part of my father's net income. That would be a type of alimony.
A few days later we went to another hearing where quite a few people were present. The judge said she wanted 10 different people in the audience to write something about somebody they knew. It should be noted if the person were dead.
I, for some reason, decided to write something about John Smith (an old friend who died around 1972). Although John Smith was dead, I didn't make a note about it. Everyone turned in their papers and the judge began going through them. When she came to my paper she said she understood that John Smith was dead. She asked how many people in the audience knew John Smith. No one raised their hand. The judge wanted to know why the person who had written the paper hadn't noted that John Smith was dead. Finally she said, "Mr. Collier, would you explain."
I said, "Well actually I forgot that he was dead. It's been a number of years ago. But I could tell you everything I know about him."
She asked me to proceed. I said, "At the time I met him I was living on the West Side in Portsmouth, Ohio."
Suddenly I found myself at the West Portsmouth House. I knew I was however still in the middle of the divorce proceedings and I thought the judge was in the House with me.
I began describing the House and I talked about the carpet in the living room. I said I had put down the carpet because part of the floor was missing and the dirt was even showing through in places. I had hung another old carpet over one door to keep out the cold in the winter. I said, "At the time I was living there I was dealing drugs."
Even though I didn't want to discuss my having sold drugs, I decided that being completely honest would be best. I repeated, "I was dealing drugs at that time. My father owned that house and he just let me live over there. He knew I was dealing drugs. Just let me live over there and deal drugs. I continued doing that and living there until finally I was arrested for possession of marijuana in the spring of 1972."
I didn't see any point in mentioning that my father had come to the House when I had been arrested while the police were still there nor that he had gone to the jail and bailed me out. I also didn't mention that I had never actually been convicted. I simply said I had been arrested and said, "That was when I quit dealing drugs. Finally I got off the drugs and became a lawyer like you."
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