I had a very unusual experience this afternoon, and it's one that I know I will always remember.
It was a very beautiful warm sunny day here in Central Texas. It felt like spring rather than winter. And, as I love being outdoors in weather this nice, I decided to prune the big acacia tree out front. It's relatively soft wood, and I did all the cuts with handsaws. I piled the brush along the road, and then I found a listing online of someone who hauls brush in this area. I called him, described what I had, and he offered to come out and haul it away for $120. That seemed fair enough to me, plus he was willing to come out right away. So, what's not to like? We made the deal.
He arrived an hour later, and it only took a couple minutes to get it loaded. I handed him the payment, in cash, six twentys, and he handed two of them back to me. He said that the size of the load, being what it was, $80 was enough. I responded by thanking him, and then I handed him a $20 and said it was a tip. He tried to shake his head and say no, but I strongarmed him. I have to laugh as I type that because that's me, 5'6" 138 pounds strongarming a big African-American man who looks like he's 6'4" 250 pounds.
I think there are very few people who would have done that. Would I have done it? I would like to think so, but I can't be sure. That's because there were some fixed factors that were unaffected by the number of branches. He drove down here from Ben White Blvd in South Austin during rush hour. I know where it is. That was the same burden regardless of the number of branches. From here, he was going to the dump in Creedmoor (he told me), and I know where that is. But, the time and the work involved in doing that were going to be the same regardless of the number of branches. He would have been totally in his rights to stick to the deal that we struck.
So, why did he do it? He did it because he's honest. That's the long and short of it; he is an honest man.
Ironically, just today, I was accused by a British man, Steve Haydon, of being dishonest in my JFK work. Dishonest? What does he mean by that? Does he think that I am advocating things that I do not believe? That I know are false? Does he doubt that I truly believe that Oswald was in the doorway during the shooting? Does he doubt that I really believe that the films showing Lovelady in a plaid shirt were faked afterwards, and that he didn't even wear a plaid shirt or even a longsleeved one?
Does he doubt that I truly believe that the Woman and Boy in the Altgens photo were added to the picture in order to cover the face of the man behind them, who was most likely Jack Ruby? And that she could not possibly be holding that boy up vertically with one arm? That she would have to be Superwoman to do it?
And that they added the Woman and Baby to the Towner film just to corroborate the Altgens Woman and Boy?
What does that image look like to you? Does it not look like a woman who is supporting a baby with her left arm from below? She's not. In the film, she is waving at the President with her left arm above: constantly. So, how is she supporting the baby? She's not. If she were using her right arm, we'd see it going around the baby. The baby must be levitating.
I sincerely believe that the JFK assassination is the most photographically altered event of all time. I know, beyond the slightest shadow of a doubt, that Lee Harvey Oswald was standing in the doorway during the shooting of JFK. I know that an extremely elaborate and painstaking campaign has been underway for 52 years to hide the fact that Oswald was framed and innocent, and that the national security state murdered Kennedy in a coup d'etat.
I am very impressed with that man who came today to haul brush; he sets a high standard for himself. I would even say that I was inspired by him- inspired to do better. But, have I been honest in my JFK work? Yes, I have. Completely and totally honest.