No Good Man

No Good Man

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"When I am gone, you will become me." My father said. "When you talk, you will hear my voice. When you teach your kids, you will get the strangest sense of deja vu, as if you are saying what you once heard. Someday, when you look in the mirror, you will no longer be young, or handsome, but old, and the face you will see looking back at you will be my face. You will get old, then weak, and people will treat you as if you are helpless, and a burden, and wish that you would just quietly go away. And one day you will. And that will be if you are lucky. If you are not lucky, your going away will be long and hard and brutal. Whatever people felt for me, they will feel for you. Whoever treated me kindly will treat you kindly, whoever disliked me will dislike you. People will tell you how everything you are doing is wrong although deep in your heart you know you are right. And when you succeed at what you are doing "wrong," and the people notice, they will shake their heads in wonder, and proceed to dislike you even more for your few successes. When people need someone to blame, whereas they once pointed at me, they will now point at you. No matter what you've accomplished, or how little you've compromised yourself, someone, or many someones, will look at you as a failure. I just hope it isn't your kids. And I hope you grow wise enough to not take it personally." When I was young, especially in my teenage years, I thought my father a loser, a coward, a fool, an embarrassment. I called him an "old fart." I blamed him for my mother's death. I wondered why he didn't make more of himself in life, why he had no ambition to "succeed." I wondered why he couldn't be a "dreamer" like I romantically imagined myself to be. I wondered why he didn't care if we were poor, why he didn't care that we lived in a tumble-down old farmhouse, rode in a car already destined for the scrapheap, why he didn't care if people laughed at our misery. I wondered why he let people lie to him, deceive him, steal from him, walk all over him, mock him behind his back, cause him (and us) pain. "Why can't you just be a man?" I'd ask him silently, in my own mind. I always wondered how my father could believe so strongly in God, when God had obviously let him down in so many ways. I looked at him, and considered him the "Job" I had read about in the Bible at Summer Bible School, but a pathetic real one, with no chance of hope or salvation, or reward for any of his suffering. It has taken over six decades for me to find the answers to my questions, and the years just keep stacking up, but I have finally found many of the answers I sought. It will take the rest of my life, I'm sure, to answer the balance of those questions. Strange to say, as I grow older, I find myself being a lot like him. I've cultivated interests in certain things that appealed to him, and now have a fascination for many of the things that fascinated him, like nature, for one. Even stranger, I find myself being quite proud of myself for being like him. Like him, I let people lie to me, deceive me, steal from me, walk all over me, mock me. I don't know how to explain it, but all the disrespect makes me stronger, and the strength brings me happiness. It's a strange sort of happiness, I suppose, but it is one facet of MY happiness. And those rare, precious, people who bring me joy, rather than unhappiness, have taught me something priceless - how to love. It's as if I've been prepared, by some kind of wizard Zen-master guru, for my own life, as I dream-walk through it, in a fog. A miracle has been wrought. Despite all my proud, arrogant, obnoxious, misguided efforts to the contrary, I have become a husband, father, teacher, human being. And I am content! Or, at least as content as a human has a right to be. There are few people I am grateful toward, but this is one of them - Like almost every human being ever, he was a curious and complex mix of good and bad - This is a storyshow more

Product details

  • Paperback | 294 pages
  • 152.4 x 228.6 x 17.02mm | 508.02g
  • Createspace Independent Publishing Platform
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1507574061
  • 9781507574065

About John Francis Yuhas

John Francis Yuhas was born in Yonkers in 1949. His favorite classical authors are Voltaire, Goethe, Dante Alighieri, Kafka, Kant, Camus, Scott and Emerson. Other favorite authors include Joyce, Trumbo, Remarque, Orwell, Huxley, Golding, and Philip K. Dick, who he refers to as a "prophet." Mr. Pastor often pays reverence and homage to these authors and many more. His books contain numerous allusions to these other works, but blended with references to modern pop culture. Yet you will find J. F. Yuhas's work to be unique and extra-ordinary. His first five novels written under the pen names, Ivan Franz Pasztor ("Johnny's Getting-It Apprenticeship," "In My Own Image," "By Red Neck Crick," "Of All The Things I've Lost") or Juan Francisco Pastor ("Sonora"), have themes, storylines, plots, and character arcs, the likes of which you will not find in any other book. You will find his writing very politically incorrect, what he refers to as "button-pushing." His storylines can be dark yet enlightening, profane yet profound, gut-wrenching yet soul-inspiring, intellectual but fun to read. His 6th book, "No Good Man" is a truthful narrative about his childhood, and relationship with his parents, especially his father, a battle-scarred veteran of WWII, who could be caring and nurturing one moment, and almost demonic the next, and who the author despised in his adolescence but came to admire and respect in his later more