I was watching when the crippled man in the wheelchair cried out in agony at the irrational man’s violence in the dining room. I was watching as the confused, belligerent man would not let go of the crippled man, even though the man was screaming. They were across the room from where I sat. I was watching when many of the other men in that area of the dining room rose to their feet and gathered around the two, ready and willing to come to the aid of the crippled man in the wheelchair.
There were words shouted and threats made, while the crippled man screamed. It’s a familiar sight with that one guy who always wants to get a piece of somebody or other, over nothing. I’m getting awfully tired of this violent, confused man with the belligerent attitude, and his propensity for irrational violence against the helpless.
I have a certain distaste for that sort of thing.
What he didn’t count on is that his victim is well known around here as being a WWII veteran, combat wounded. What he didn’t count on is that the powers that be around here have alternative ways to having the man arrested by the Police. They simply have him put under house arrest, and the poor bastard’s not even likely to notice.
I mentioned the incident with some of the directors, including the executive director, herself. What she said is that something is being done about the incident. They’re just not making it a public issue. There’s confidentiality to consider. I don’t see how she can avoid making it a public issue, when the incident happened in front of everybody at mealtime, but that’s the way it is.
The first thing that was done was that the violent man was moved to another table.
I was watching when that happened, too.
The next thing was that he was very quietly, very gently placed under house arrest, by a very gentle person whom no one can oppose around here, with her ever-sweet and ever-wonderful way about getting things done. The man and his attitudes can just kindly go eat their meals in their quarters, until he figures out how to purport himself in the dining room, at some time in the not-so-foreseeable future. The implications of such tactics are astronomical.
It is known that the irrational man has suffered a stroke.
There are also some whisperings about the very distinguished past of this man. This man has been doing an awful lot of this shouting and causing violent scenes in the dining room, ever since he’s been here. He’s behaving rather like a little boy who can’t get what he wants in Sunday School, or in elementary school, rather than being a distinguished elderly gentleman, modestly reposing in a retirement community.
The next thing we’re likely to hear is that the irrational man has been taken back behind a locked door, without being given the pass code to be able to walk out when he wants to go. They have a place like that around here. Some of these places call the locked down ward the Village. Here they call it the Reminiscence Center. It’s for people who need to be locked down for their own best interest. There won’t be a writeup in the newsletter. He’ll just disappear.
They’ll put him in the Reminiscence Center, if he keeps this up.
The other thing about it all is this: when I was feeling like I was going to break down and lose my mind all over again, the way I’ve done so many times in the past, the director of nursing told me that if the Police came to fetch me with a butterfly net, maybe they just wouldn’t give them directions to my room. Maybe they’d keep my whereabouts confidential, so that I might recover in the privacy of my own quarters. It’s said that rich men don’t go to jail, and I’m beginning to think it’s true.
My anonymity is important to the management of this place around here. If my schizophrenia acts up, which it’s bound to do, from time to time; what they want to do is simply take me to a hospital for medical treatment, until I’m well enough to come back home to Powder Ridge. They’re not going to take me to their lockup. I’m too young.
The thing that I’m writing about amazes me. A man has committed a series of criminal acts, assaulting a number of other men without any apparent provocation, and causing a general nuisance in the public dining area, where we all get together to eat our meals. They put him under house arrest for one meal, and refused to serve him his meals in the the dining room, once. I’m beginning to feel the more sheltered here at Powder Ridge, than at any other place I’ve ever been to, up until now.
What an amazing concept.
The old guy wears the most handsome new clothing, and at first glance is the epitome of any esteemed, elderly gentleman, but he’s in the habit of making an ass of himself every time he’s seen in public? Go figure? The image doesn’t fit the behavior. I think he must be somebody, to be getting such treatment in a place like this. I think this place must be some kind of remarkable, to resolve so many of it’s own problems internally.
I am very interested in seeing what happens next in this place. There is a precedent in this place, of solving it’s own problems, and I’m beginning to think this treatment is only company policy. I find the concept to be a fascinating one, and have opened up my senses to picking up on more of the interactions of the staff with the residents in the near future. I can’t imagine what could possibly be done by someone, to get themselves kicked out of this place altogether. I’m not interested in finding out first hand, either.
Heck, let them kick someone else out.
I like it here.
There’s this one woman, who just thought she’d take it upon herself to come visit me one day, since she hasn’t seen me at the program for a little while now. Knowing that I reside at Powder Ridge, and knowing where the place is located, she takes in on herself to become invited, all by herself.
She’s not welcome, I’ll tell you that.
She’s one of these impetuous people who thinks other people owe it to them to respond to their inappropriate behavior, just because they’re female. She’s already tried to save me from being alone, when I wasn’t the least bit interested in her in the first place. She ignored everything I told her, until I wouldn’t allow her to ignore me further.
Now, she’s come visiting.
I’ve had other women to fend off, whom I’ve found equally repulsive as that one. This person has been stalking me for the entire time I’ve lived in the Tidewater Area. She’s got big ideas, and getting her big ideas rooted out of her thinking has been a challenge for me, ever since I came here.
So, I’m reposing in my room, peacefully writing in my notebook, when the phone rings across the room from where I’m writing. Since next to nobody has my phone number, I figure it’s important, so I make arrangements to put my notebook aside, to go answer the unwelcome disturbance of the telephone. Arriving at the receiver on the fourth ring, I find out that it’s Sam, up at the front desk.
“What’s up, Sam?”
“There’s a woman here to see you, Mr Stanley. What would you like me to tell her?”
“What’s her name, Sam?”
“She says her name is Patti.”
“Does she know I’m here?”
“No. I’ve been discrete, just as you’ve suggested.”
“You’ve never heard of me.”
“Don’t worry, Mr Stanley. I understand. I’ll take care of it.”
My state of mind is so completely derailed, putting an end my writing session abruptly, and I find myself pacing around my suite like a pent up wild cat. Deciding to take a walk down to the rehab, I get my rollator, and lock my door from out in the hallway. I know the back way down to the rehab center, and head on down there for myself.
A rollator happens to be a four wheeled walker, made to facilitate more agile walking than a person can do with a two wheeled walker. With the four wheels, one can walk relatively normally. It’s just that one has some help with stabilizing them while they’re on their feet, to go along with the other benefits of taking along some more of a prosthesis to help one walk more safely.
It’s been some significant amount of time since I had the fall by this time, but my prosthetic joint implant is still as vulnerable as ever. I had shattered my right femur at the ball joint some time ago, and an orthopedic surgeon had given me a new, titanium alloy ball joint, fitted with a titanium shaft, driven into my right leg bone.
It renders the patient a perpetual fall risk, since one bad fall can take away the patient’s ability to walk for the remainder of their lifetime, and the one thing that this Patti person had done to me, that turned me off to her so vehemently, was to use that information against me, to take an unfair advantage of me, quite some time ago by now. And she was taking further liberties she had no right to take, too.
The thing is that she grabbed ahold of me, at least once, without my consent, pinning my arms to my sides and taking away my motor control of my personal center of gravity, while I happened to be on my feet after a meeting of the program. Then, she showered me with unwanted kisses, when she knew darned good and well I was way too off balance to oppose her. She was counting on it.
Patti took advantage of me.
There are plenty of guys who would take such a signal of spontaneous passion to be something worth pursuing, but all I felt was that she was violating me. It took me opposing her in endless meetings of the program, until I finally decided it wasn’t worth taking the risk that she’d cause me to fall again, and I stopped going to the program altogether, out of self-preservation.
Not wanting to go down to the lobby at the moment, while Sam is busy sending Patti, I take an alternate route to the rehab. I go down the musician’s hallway, with all the great master’s scores framed on the walls, and head for the rehab center. I can always go to work out in the rehab gym, anytime I feel like it. That’s no secret these days. They’re always happy to see me there, and an idiot like Patti doesn’t know anything about the location of the rehab gym inside this building.
Sam won’t let her past the desk anyway.
I get down to the gym in about five to ten minutes, and the therapist is just as glad to see me as I figured she’d be. While I catch my breath from my brisk walk through the upstairs hallway, the full length of the building from my suite, the therapist cooperates and straps some weights on my ankles.
Then she goes and sits back down at her computer to get back to working on a project she was taking on before I’d gotten there. I work sitting down at first, then complicate the exercises by doing some things standing up. Catching my own pace, I give myself a good workout for about 20 minutes.
I use the ankle weights, as well as the hand bar, and work at my overall pulmonary stamina awhile, involving a lot of different muscle groups in my lower, as well as in my upper body. I take my time walking home to my suite thereafter, and find no message on my answering machine when I get home to my suite. This is a good thing, since it suggests there hasn’t been anymore of an issue with my whereabouts since I left my suite.
I eventually report for a meal at the dining room, but by that time Patti has long gone.
I was thinking about how there are things being done about things around here, and I came to a conclusion. The powers that be, here at Powder Ridge, are handling things internally. That’s the bottom line. The corporate level of this place doesn’t want the police coming in here, and they don’t want the news media coming in here, with a lot of bad press to smear the company name. We fix our own messes. It seems too good to be true, but it is true, nonetheless.
The thing that pays the bills around here is a good reputation. Oh, yes. I’ve heard of Powder Ridge. That’s a nice place. So, we get more new residents, based on that reputation, and the corporate management of the place is just as happy as the rest of us. Powder Ridge remains in business, because our census keeps on growing. People pass away naturally around here, and the idea is that there are more of those who will come and move in here, too. It’s just good business to handle our affairs internally.
It’s a realization whose time has come.
I can just stop expecting them to have people arrested around Powder Ridge, because that’s not the way management does things around here. They have a problem, they cope with the problem in- house. We fix our own messes.