Watchman's Teaching Letter #205 May 2015
This is my two hundred and fifth monthly teaching letter and starts my eighteenth year of publication. This will be the third in a series explaining how key experiences in my life would eventually lead me to my Christian Israel Identity ministry.
I explained in WTL #204 how in junior high, I got acquainted with a classmate who was much like myself and introduced me to how a radio tube worked and showed me how to read radio circuit diagrams, which immediately spurred my interest into becoming a shortwave radio operator, which I soon learned I couldn’t afford. Radio repair also crossed my mind. In the late 30s and early 40s there were neither television nor high fidelity FM (with or without stereo)! All we had were the AM radio band and several shortwave bands broadcasting voice or the International Morse code. If we wanted to listen to recorded music, all we had was a 78 RPM record player with a windup motor. Even then, there were large phonograph record stores which specialized in jungle-jazz, and the latest songs on the hit parade, starring blacks and Edomite-jews from Broadway in New York or Hollywood. Like all the other forms of the media, the phonograph record business was controlled by these same people.
What I did find that I could afford, was to build a homemade crystal set. At last I had everything ready to give it a try. After a few pokes, a radio station came in loud and clear. Now I could listen to my favorite country and western music (along with a limited amount of classical, and some of the better religious hymns). I also dearly love Irish music! I was tired of listening to jungle jazz and the hit parade where they would slur nearly every word and note of a so-called song from beginning to the end.
I didn’t realize it at the time, but my excessive dislike for jazz and what they classified as “popular music” led me eventually to understand the evil side of music, thus conditioning me for my present ministry. In my research on the subject of subversive music, I found the book The Marxist Minstrels, A Handbook On Communist Subversion Of Music, by David A. Noebel. I will quote the preface in its entirety, pp. i-iv:
“PREFACE: Karl Marx in his 1848 Manifesto said, ‘The Communists disdain to conceal their views and aims.’
“Following the example of their phrenological master, the Communists have openly declared culture (music, art and literature) to be in their sphere of weaponry. Moshe Decter, in The Profile of Communism, admits, ‘The Communists endeavor to capture men’s minds through the cultural offensive.’ And J. Edgar Hoover, the late director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, stated that the Communists ‘have infiltrated every conceivable sphere of activity; youth groups, radio, television, and motion picture industries; church, school, educational and cultural groups; the press; nationality minority groups and civil and political units.’ He stated elsewhere, (‘The war between communism and the free world is not fought with bombs or other tangible weapons. It is being fought now by subversion through the medium of ideas. It is not an accident that the greatest concentration of Communist workers has been found in three fields – education, union, entertainment. These are the areas where ideas flourish and thinking patterns are formed.’)
“In the musical arena the radicals have to be congratulated for their successful use of music, for they have inflicted upon the American people a program persistently pursued until near perfection and completion. The Communist infiltration into the subversion of American music has been nothing short of phenomenal and in some areas, e.g., folk music, their control is fast approaching the saturation point under the able leadership of Pete Seeger, Sing Out! Folkways Records and Oak Publications, Inc. One need only consult R. Serge Denisoff’s Great Day Coming for corroborating evidence.
“The subverter’s use of music is a refined two-edged subversive sword, cutting deeply into our nation’s will to resist a ‘Soviet America.’
“One cutting edge is aimed at removing the barrier between classical music and certain types of popular music by substituting perverted form (e.g., jungle noises) for standardized classical form.
“The other edge is more psychological than cultural and consists of the Communist use of music directed at destroying the mental and emotional stability of America’s youth through a scheme capable of producing mass neurosis.
(“The father of the [Jewish] Bolshevik Revolution, V.I. Lenin, speaking to the Third All-Russian Congress of the Young Communist League on October 2, 1920, insisted that they must ‘rework culture,’ for only by so doing could they hope to build ‘a proletarian [Communist] culture.’ He also appreciated the findings of Ivan Pavlov and his experiments regarding ‘conditioned reflexes.’)
“In 1929, the ideological platform of the Russian Association of Proletarian Musicians was written. In its class war interpretation of music, the comrades were assured that classical music was ‘bourgeois,’ whereas folk music was the music of the ‘exploited and oppressed classes.’ The ultimate aim of the Association was the extension of the proletarian Communist influence to the musical masses, reeducation and reorganization of these masses in order to direct their work and creative talents toward socialist upbuilding.’ To accomplish this, ‘new musical forms [must be] created and will be created by the proletariat. Proletarian music must penetrate into the innermost masses of workmen and peasants, unite the thought and the will of these masses and raise them for further struggle and construction, organizing their class consciousness in the direction of the ultimate victory of the proletariat as builder of a Communist society.’
“The subversive International Music Bureau, with its headquarters in Moscow, published its aims in the magazine Soviet Music in 1933. The publication announced, ‘We should not verge one single iota from a program of progressive class struggle. We can be successful in our efforts only if we know how to transplant our political slogans to the sphere of music ... We should prove that the only right road for artistic creations, which include also that of musicians, is the service to the objectives of proletarian revolution.’ Hanns Eisler, one of the founders of the International Music Bureau, frankly admitted, ‘Communist music becomes heavy artillery in the battle for Communism.’
“On November 18, 1945, the National Council of American-Soviet Friendship held an American-Soviet cultural conference at the Engineering Societies Building in New York City. Scores of Communists and their followers attended, together with others interested in revolutionary, leftist cultural activities.
“Less than six months later an ‘Arts as a Weapon’ symposium was held in New York City on April 15, 1946. It was headlined by Communist Party chief William Z. Foster, Howard Fast, Dalton Trumbo, Arnaud E’Usseau and Elizabeth Cattlett. It was decided at this time that the cultural section of the revolutionary field was to be rebuilt; that ‘art was to become a weapon.’ Only a few months earlier, Moscow had purged its cultural fronts of the so-called ‘weaklings’ who had permitted the ‘vibrations of world unity for victory to dull their drums for revolution.’
“In July 1946 a cultural front congress was held in Moscow. Norman Corwin, American writer and radio commentator, was the ‘honored guest.’ He presented the Moscow International Convention with two recordings from the American-Soviet Music Society, on which were reproduced special messages from the Red leaders in the United States to the Soviet heads.’ In this same year the Communists established a number of recording companies here in the United States, aimed not only at proletariatizing our culture, but also seeking to make a generation of our youth mentally ill. This program will be examined in detail in this work.
“Sidney Finkelstein, ‘the cultural spokesman for the Communist conspiracy’ in the United States, in his book How Music Expresses Ideas, made Lenin’s ‘rework culture’ speech the heart of his work. Finkelstein called for breaking down the barrier between classical music and ‘popular’ music. He termed this barrier chauvinistic, and proposed to smash it by inundating the American public with the ‘music of the Negro people.’ One can be sure Mr. Finkelstein was not referring to ‘Negro spirituals’ but rather to African ‘beat’ music. His proposed method of eliminating the barrier seems to be quite successful since America is presently submerged in jungle ‘beats’ and ‘noises.’
“Even Time magazine’s article on rock ’n’ roll more than substantiated Finkelstein’s fondest dreams. Finkelstein concludes, ‘works will come forth which will inspire the American people in their collective struggles for peaceful progress, express their solidarity with all other struggling peoples and be a historic contribution to world culture.’
“And now Jerry Rubin in his modern day ‘Communist Manifesto’ Do It! admits that ‘rock ’n’ roll marked the beginning of the revolution.’ He says, ‘We see sex, rock ’n’ roll and dope as part of a Communist plot to take over America.’ And concludes, ‘We’ve combined youth, music, sex, drugs and rebellion with treason – and that’s a combination hard to beat.’
“Perhaps this is why Alfred G. Aronowitz commented, ‘If the establishment knew what today’s popular music really is saying, not what the words are saying, but what the music itself is saying, then they wouldn’t just turn thumbs down on it. They’d ban it, they’d smash all the records and they’d arrest anyone who tried to play it.’ Or again, ‘While American radio kept busy trying to keep its turntable clean of records that dealt with sex and drugs, American songwriters kept busy outwitting the censors with lyrics that had double, triple and sometimes multiple meanings. America’s new generation was creating its own culture and as part of that culture it was creating its own music and its own language.’
“This study is concerned with both the cultural and the psycho- physiological, i.e., the Communist use of music capable of producing a generation of neurotic and emotionally unstable youth. The study is, in part, ‘unbelievable,’ but then so is E= MC2, and since knowledge is the irreducible requirement for intelligent action, the following material is offered with the sincere prayer that those concerned will take the prop- er action to assure a free Republic based on Christian precepts and Constitutional concepts.” (End of preface)
A quick note on the name “Finkelstein”: (1) When it is spelled “Fink”, it is often an indication that it is jewish, (2) When it is spelled “Finck”, it is generally an indication that it is German! The name Finck has a recorded history as a Christian name in Germany dating to at least the 13th century, and is not related to Jewish names like Finkel.
Also, it is interesting that: “The subversive International Music Bureau, with its headquarters in Moscow, published its aims in the magazine Soviet Music in 1933.” This is intriguing, as 1933 is the year I entered the first grade at the Perry Center school in Perry Township, Wood County, Ohio. Why then, should I be surprised that jewish com- munism was already focusing on my education, and how they could make me “ill”!
Repeating: Nor should we be surprised that: “He, [J. Edgar Hoover], stated elsewhere, ‘The war between communism and the free world is not fought with bombs or other tangible weapons. It is being fought now by subversion through the medium of ideas. It is not an accident that the greatest concentration of Communist workers has been found in three fields – education, union, entertainment. These are the areas where ideas flourish and thinking patterns are formed’.”
Why should I be further surprised at reading: “The father of the [Jewish] Bolshevik Revolution, V.I. Lenin, speaking to the Third All- Russian Congress of the Young Communist League on October 2, 1920, insisted that they must ‘rework culture,’ for only by so doing could they hope to build ‘a proletarian [Communist] culture.’ He also appreciated the findings of Ivan Pavlov and his experiments regarding ‘conditioned reflexes’.”
When I examine this, I realize that in 1920, my mother was only ten years old, and would become a victim of jewish communist propa- ganda, such as the book The Melting Pot,written by one Edomite- jew, Israel Zangwill, who falsely taught that all White, Caucasian, European Americans were of mixed race. Just how she ever got a copy of this book to read, she never revealed, but one can be quite sure it was obtained through an Edomite-jewish source! Who knows, it might have been sponsored and circulated by some church, with the thought of doing the Almighty a favor! What I do realize from all of it is that Yahweh was preparing me for this, my present ministry!
While being on the subject of music, I would be remiss if I neglected to reveal to the reader just how I became interested in harmoniously pleasing melodies, rather than jungle jazz and discor- dant noise. Sometime around 1937, someone sold my mother on the idea that I should start taking lessons to learn how to play a Hawaiian guitar, without consulting me. The first thing I knew, my parents had purchased a new Hawaiian guitar with a case and the needed acces- sories, and signed me up to start taking lessons. Looking back, I believe it was a high-pressure scheme to sell a lot of Hawaiian guitars, and then make more profit by giving lessons on how to play them. I remember vaguely that they operated out of a studio they had set up. The first song they taught me to play was “Nearer My God To Thee”, but after that the songs were less desirable to a nine year old boy, so practice became a chore rather than a pleasure. I don’t know how much money my parents might have paid up-front, but suddenly my mother decided to take the lessons instead of myself, then she also got tired of them and quit, and the guitar sat in the closet collecting dust.
In 1938, my father bought a good console-style radio with super- heterodyne circuitry that covered the AM band and several short-wave bands. With these newly improved circuits, music was much clearer than before. About a year later, after we had moved three quarters of a mile northwest of Fostoria on the then U.S. route 23, every Saturday mid-evening, I would tune in to WSM out of Nashville, Tennessee, and listen to The Grand Ole Opry. Right away my sister would complain, as she wanted to listen to The Hit Parade instead! My sister hated the music that I liked, and I hated the music that she favored! So, every Saturday mid-evening it would be a long drawn-out war of words. This went on week after week. I didn’t realize it at the time, but it was Yahweh who was putting it in my heart to hate that which was being propagandized as “popular”! This was just another incident that was preparing me for the Christian Israel Identity Message, and I would not become aware of it until many years later!
After moving to this new location on U.S. 23, an opportunity opened to me, as there was a creek running about 200 feet behind our house, and I was advised it was a good place to trap for muskrat. So I bought a dozen heavy-duty traps from the hardware store, and when the season opened, I set my traps, and began running them daily, usually around 12 midnight to 2 AM. I had to set the traps in such a way as to pull the muskrat under water, or he would chew his leg off and get away. When I caught one, I would then have to skin it and stretch the skin, with its fur, over a specially designed board, and then hang it up to dry. My father showed me how to shape the board for the stretching. When skinning the muskrat, one had to be very careful not puncture the skin, or it would devalue the hide. My father took the time to show me, and skinned the first muskrat that I had caught, and then I was on my own. If one has never skinned a muskrat and stretched its pelt on a board, one is missing one of life’s great experiences, as one’s hands get quite slimy and smelly in the process. After about mid-season, I had several muskrat pelts skinned, stretched and dried, and a fur buyer stopped around and gave me $3.00 for each one, which made me very happy. Then the fur-buyer gave me quite a surprise as he said he would pay me the usual $3.00 for each muskrat, and 50¢ extra if I wouldn’t skin and stretch them. Well, that was music to my ears, as I really wasn’t over-thrilled with the job of skinning and stretching them in the first place. I often wondered why he was willing pay me an extra 50¢ for not skinning and stretching them. Years later I came to realize the fur-buyer was selling those muskrat carcasses to the people on the other side of the railroad tracks, just beyond Jacob Schiff’s junkyard on Spruce street to the squat monsters and hottentots who resided there. Whether or not this Jacob Schiff was any relation to the infamous banker, I do not know, but he probably was! What amazes me is the fact that this fur-buyer didn’t come around for a few weeks at a time, and those muskrats laid around many days in temperatures well above freezing, and must have been quite rotten by the time they were cooked.
The reason that fur prices were so high in the early 40s was because the wearing of fur coats by women was all the rage from then until the early 1950s, when the popularity finally gradually died out. Not only was the original price quite high to purchase the fur coat, but to keep the summer bugs from eating away at them, the coats had to be put into storage during the warmer months which became quite expensive, as while they were in storage, they had to be locked up in a sealed room where certain gasses could be applied to keep the fur from being eaten by various insects and worms. Then to keep the coat in top condition, each coat would be carefully inspected and any needed repairs made. Over a few seasons, the fur coats simply wore out and no amount of repair could bring them back to like-new condition, and the women were forced financially to find a different fad!
Anyway, after that first trapping season, I had saved up a little money so I could go shopping in downtown Fostoria, probably, as I remember, on a Saturday evening. I had nothing in particular that I was looking for, but just going from store to store to see what they had. I finally ended up at the southern part of the business district where I was just passing the Firestone Tire Store. They had a few items of interest in the window display, so I decided to go inside to see what else they might have for sale. While there, I spotted a small compact portable radio. It was used, and the price was marked down accordingly. My first concern was how many distant stations it could pick up. It was quite sensitive, and because it ran strictly on batteries the reception was quite clear. It was probably the first good portable radio on the market. If I remember, the used price was something like thirteen dollars, and I had enough to pay cash, so I purchased it.
When I got it home, I had no problem of tuning in WSM, Nashville, Tennessee to get my favorite programs. In the process, I found another high power station, XEAW out of Reynosa, Tamaulipas, Mexico, that carried the identical kind of music the WSM station broadcast. XEAW did not, at that time, have any kind of Mexican-style music, but mostly country and western, along with a lot of religious hymns. What was different about XEAW was it played this kind of music almost continually. Finally, my sister could listen to her Hit Parade on the downstairs living room console-style radio, while I could go upstairs to my bedroom with my portable radio, and listen to my kind of music. The main thing that I had to do was keep batteries in the radio.
I don’t remember how long I used that portable radio, but somewhat later when I went to use it, the plastic case was warped out of shape showing that it had been overheated in some way. I knew this radio needed ventilation, so I was very careful not to cover it over with my bed blankets. I may have left to visit my Keiser grandparents a few days, and when I returned home the radio’s case was wrinkled, and I couldn’t turn it on. Even new batteries didn’t help. At that time I hadn’t studied radio enough to trace each circuit, to see where the trouble was. Years later, after I was married, I did complete a radio and television course by mail through The National Radio Institute out of Washington D.C.
To be sure, I was very disappointed that I could no longer use my portable radio to listen to my favorite music. I can’t say that the thought of my sister, while I was gone, may have taken it to bed with her and pulled a blanket over herself and the radio, didn’t cross my mind, but whatever really happened, I’ll never know. I kept this thought to myself, not blaming anyone for what had happened. Like the ex- pression some people use today, “shit happens”! Then, strangely, somewhere along the line, a Spanish-style guitar showed up, with a promise by my father to have one of his co-workers at Union Carbide to give me lessons on how to play it. All of this ended up with three lessons teaching me some of the basic chords in three different keys. From this humble beginning, I soon found all I needed at a local music store where they sold sheet music and books containing all the guitar chords possible, along with the proper words of various songs, for a Spanish guitar. Years later, though, I found the guitar chords shown in the various sheet music and songbooks incomplete. After I had gotten married, I learned to read the music staff of songs in hymnals, and found that the people who added the guitar diagrams to the sheet music and song books lacked some of the proper notes, or substituted them with a similar chord that didn’t harmonize with the author’s original intent. By that later time, I found other priorities taking all of my time, and the guitar took a back seat in my life, and gradually faded completely away, while I still like to listen to the same kind of music. This sensitivity in favor of inspired harmonic music, as opposed to uninspired dis-harmonic jazz and noisy babel (so-called music), was one more thing that was preparing me for my eventual knowledge of the Christian Israel Identity Message, and my ministry to that end!
At this juncture, I will skip over part of my youth until the summer of 1943, when at 15 years old, I decided to hitch-hike to California where my uncle Merrill was stationed in the Army near Riverside (in the desert at the time), just south of San Bernardino. My uncle had met and married a young woman from Long Beach, so my first goal was to stop at Long Beach to meet my new aunt and her family. My most interesting ride that I got was through the entire state of Nebraska, where a man of about 55 years picked me up driving a pre- WW II Buick. During WW II, the government had passed an emergen- cy law requiring a speed limit of no more than 35 MPH throughout the country, and this man drove his Buick exactly that speed all the way through that state! It took a long time, but he had a long story to tell. The gist of his story was: he informed me that Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin were planning to meet and sell our country out to the Communists. That conference did take place in February of 1945 at Yalta. Thus, this man revealed this to me one year and seven months before-the-fact, and I have never forgotten it! This all came back to me in my memory when researching the conspiracy in the late 1970s and early 80s. The question which I must ask is: Was this just a fluke meeting this man in Nebraska, or was it intended by the Almighty?
The next summer of 1944, being 16 years old, I returned to Long Beach California to board with my aunt Helen, and her father and mother Kindig, and I worked at Douglas Aircraft on C-47s during my summer vacation between school-years, after which time I returned home to Fostoria, Ohio.
After returning home, I could see I was getting old enough that I might be drafted into the Army within a year or two. One must understand that in 1944, most sources believed WW II would continue another ten years. Rather than wait and be drafted into the Army, I decided to join the Navy, as it appeared to be a better branch of the U.S armed forces to serve in. Because I was a little under age, my father had to sign permission for me to join. Then on December 7th, 1944, the navy sent a school bus painted blue, to pick me up at my home in Fostoria. By the time we reached Toledo, Ohio, the bus was full of others who had signed up for the Navy. At Toledo, there was a general physical examination of all who were on the bus, and a few were rejected for one reason or another, and were returned to their homes. After this physical, all who had passed it were loaded on a train and we headed for Chicago, where we were transferred to the high trolley line and headed for the Great Lakes Naval Training Center in northern Illinois. After we had reached Great Lakes, they herded us (and there were about five or six hundred) into a very large empty room with no furniture of any kind. There we were left standing and waiting, but no one came. It was around 11 P.M. and after an hour and a half, many of us started to sit or lay down on the floor, and find a position where we could be comfortable in some manner. Then, finally, about 3 A.M. someone did show up and we were led to a room full of unfolded cots, where we could get some sleep. But very early in the morning we were awakened, after a short night’s sleep to go to breakfast where we were served a helping of beans. I think, during my entire life, that was the only time I ever ate beans for breakfast (navy beans of course)!
Well, this was another arduous day at the Great Lakes Naval Training Center. After breakfast, we were led into another large room, and ordered to take all of our clothes off, even our shoes, rings or wristwatches, and all were to be boxed up and sent back to our homes. There we were, stripped, stark, naked in a room with about five or six hundred other men! We were all lined up in a single column going through the dental inspection line, and all needing dental work were recorded and scheduled for fillings or whatever we needed. Some men’s teeth were so bad, they were assigned to a special dental company, where all of their teeth would be pulled and replaced with false teeth. I’m sure somewhere along the line, all of us would be thoroughly X-rayed. Then came the drawing of blood to determine what blood-type each one of us had, after which followed the vaccination line with several men with vaccination syringes on both the right and left sides of us, and we received vaccination shots in both arms at once (for only heaven knew what). When one got past the first two men with syringes, there would be another two men with more syringes loaded with vaccine of some kind, and another two, and another two! After we had a thorough physical examination (which some failed), and received our vaccinations, we were lined up to receive our Navy clothing. The first thing they did was have a man measuring our shoe size, then a pair of dress shoes and a pair of work shoes were issued. Then, as we continued down the line we were issued changes of socks and underwear, followed by full Navy dress and work uniforms, and a large duffel-bag to place the clothing we were not using at the time into, along with personal items we might purchase later, like a writing tablet with pencils, pens and envelopes, and who knows what else. We were also issued a linen Navy-type mattress bunk cover and a wool blanket, and a Navy pillow cover.
After we had been issued all of this we were ordered to form in columns and march (actually walk) from what they called “Main Side” over about a mile or so into where they had built new barracks around large paved marching grounds. I was assigned to company #2224. After I was there just a few days, a colder than normal winter set in, calling for a lot of snow shoveling details to be ordered into action. Also, because of the extra-cold weather, the coal furnaces heating high-pressure steam to the steam radiators had to be tended continu- ously. There was a coal supply to each furnace room, and when the steam pressure became too low, some coal would have to be added to the furnace, and the draft air intake would have to be adjusted to maintain the ideal steam pressure, and I will assure the reader that the 200 men in our company never got cold in our barracks.
During this extra cold period of time, an epidemic of scarlet fever broke out throughout the Great Lakes Naval Training Center. Those in charge of these new trainees became alarmed, and tried to take measures in order to stop its spread. Sulfa was a new drug at that time, and once each day they would line everyone up in our company in front of a drinking fountain, and issue each one of us two tablets of sulfa, and the person doing the issuing, stood right there making sure each man put the two tablets of sulfa securely in his mouth and then completely swallowed them. A few of the men actually got sick from the sulfa, but not myself. However, that sulfa didn’t prevent me from contracting the dreaded scarlet fever. Shortly after the sulfa episode, I got very sick, and I could tell from my overly warm forehead I was running a fairly high temperature, and the very odor of food upset my stomach. That same evening, I dressed up as warmly as I could, as the temperature outside was near zero, and walked about a third of a mile to sickbay. After arriving at sickbay, I had to get into a line leading to some male medical assistants, where they would check some of the basic bodily functions such as blood pressure, pulse, temperature, etc. and because my temperature was about 99.5, they issued me a bunk duty exemption. At this point, they ordered someone in my company to bring me a serving of each item that the mess-hall had on its menu that day. I tried to eat a couple of bites, and then I nearly vomited those two bites back up. As I wasn’t getting any better, I made two more trips to sickbay, and I don’t remember if these two trips were on successive evenings or not. Anyway, each of these two times my temperature was about the same, and I was again in each visit issued a bunk duty exemption. By this time I was becoming quite desperate, and decided to return to sickbay a fourth time. I began to realize that I was running a much higher temperature than they were getting at sickbay, as walking a third of a mile in zero weather, my body temper- ature was dropping down because of walking in that super-cold weather. This time, while walking to sickbay, I made up my mind I was going to watch every move they made, to see if I could get some attention. After entering sickbay once more, I had to get into that same line leading to some male medical assistants, where they would check those same basic bodily functions. This time I noticed they were giving some of the men going through the line a slip of paper, and those men would in turn then go to another line and would be seen by a full fledged doctor, so after I was given another light duty bunk exemption, I went over to the doctor’s line, and I had to stand in that line quite some time. I was the last one in line, so when I finally got to a doctor, I hold him, ‘I don’t have a slip to see you, but I am sick!’ Right away he asked me to expose my stomach, and he replied, “You have scarlet fever! Go over here in this side room where there is a couch, and you may lie down and rest until the ambulance arrives to take you to the main hospital”! I didn’t realize it at the time, but I would spend seven weeks at that hospital, and it would become yet another major turning point in my life. [I will give more detail of my extended hospital stay later.]