Autobiography – Part One

Posted by dean balog on Feb 3, 2010 in Uncategorized |

After graduation from CHS, I spent the summer working the carnival with the Cohens. It was definitely a trip into another world. I still know way too much about how the games work.

Trips into other worlds seem to have become a habit.

I actually had intended to go to Bowling Green, but ended up at Akron U. I ended up sharing part of what once was a side-by-side with Marty Collins, Chuck Brown and Mark Fitzsimmons. Marty moved out, getting an apartment behind us with Kent Wolfe. Chris Bannerman ended up spending many a night sleeping on our couch after missing curfew at her dorm.

I left Akron at the end of the year. I would have moved back home to Chippewa, except the folks had moved to Brunswick. To an apartment. Without room for me.

Through some bizarre twist of fate, I ran into an old friend at a carnival in Brunswick. Does anyone remember Jack Hawker? Jack dropped out of CHS our junior year.

Talk about another world. Jack was in Brunswick after living in Fort Lauderdale. To make a very long (although interesting) story short, Jack’s wife had run away with the road manager of Alice Cooper. Somehow he was in Brunswick, with his son.

I needed a place to live. Jack needed someone to watch his kid. Thus began my life as a nanny.

It was a short life. Jack’s wife came back.

A few months later I found myself living in the Lodi Motel, working as a busboy at the old 76 Truckstop. I’m not sure I can adequately describe how interesting being a busboy with a footlong ponytail working at a redneck truckstop really is.

By this time, the family had moved to Parma.

John Cohen had joined the Army. I stopped to visit him while he was on leave from boot camp. As he was spit shining his combat boots, he complained about how sloppy and unmilitary the guys on the Air Force bases he saw were.

About nine months later (wow, that’s significant), I was in San Antonio, Air Force Basic Training.

I met my first wife, Rachel, while we were both in what’s called Tech School. I was learning to be a computer operator. She was learning how to be an accountant. We were married about three months after we met.

Please note I did say my first wife. We had a son, Joshua in 1975. He was born in the UK.

The marriage didn’t last quite as long as my enlistment.

Okay. That’s from the summer of 71 to the summer of 77.

(Oh, yeah, while in Basic Training I became an ordained minister of the Universal Life Church. It cost me $5. During the summer of 77 I started performing weddings.)

Let’s see how far I can get with the next story update. Maybe we’ll get to working at Cleveland Clinic.

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