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The PikeStance Experience

Part II: Life As A Mustang (THEN AND NOW)

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Part II: Life As A Mustang

My 'signature' songs /videos of my life at this time period that puts things into perspective

I was afforded the luxury of financial security and a far too forgiving parents. Fortunately it was not a future destroying time period. It is interesting how I read college students on here being so studious when I was far from that. I went from drunken fool to personal stagnation. The freedom allowed me to fill my every whim whether productive or not; mostly not. In this period, I coached several youth soccer teams, started sports officiating and even ran an adult soccer league. I actually started off as a player. However, the league needed someone to organize it because the person responsible had to suddenly leave. One of the factors on why I took on took on the responsibilities was because I suffered one of many injuries to my ankles playing soccer/ football.

As a soccer/football, I managed to letter my senior year. However, I was very fortunate. My sophomore season I lost out as a starting left back. My junior season I spent most of my time injured and as a bench player. By chance, we were lacking offensive players, so I was pressed into service as a left winger (we played a 4-3-3). Somehow, I impressed my coaches and started that week. My career as a forward was launched. My senior year, we lost our best attacking player to injury and as a result we drew as many games we won and loss. {something like 2-4-2). After high school, I played sparingly. Inspired by the 1994 World Cup, I started to play again. It didn't take long for me to injure my ankle once again. Of course, just when I formed a team and was ready to play seriously again. As fate will have it, I would start coaching.

This turn out to be a major turning point. Coaching is what got me into teaching and sports officiating. My first team was an U12 boys team
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As fate will have it, there was three mothers on the team that were teachers. They were impressed with how I was with the kids, they encouraged me to get into teaching. At the time, I thought they were nuts. AS it turned out, I should had listened to them from the beginning. I like to tell people that I got into officiating because I was frustrated with the officiating of my games. While that is partially true, it isn't the complete story. I was in a magazine shop when there was a top level referee telling stories of his officiating experiences. In the middle of these stories he mentioned about an entry level clinic being offered. I wasn't yet convinced this was what I wanted to do, but I figure it will give me valuable insight to how referees think when they officiate. I would go on to officiate for over 15 years. I would eventually obtain the State 5 level referee before moving overseas. The highest level game I officiated was a preseason game as an assistant referee between a Div 3. and a A league team in the US. I also officiated as an AR college club soccer and tryouts for the local A- league team in New Orleans. I was told I was being groomed to do higher level games before I moved to Chicago for a job. In any event, sports officiating was something I did to make money to do other things between the time period I earned my BA and actually having a job. In fact, for almost a year after graduating, I essentially did nothing as if I was still in college. I was able to travel to Texas, Tennessee, and Alabama for top level tournaments.

It wasn't as though I was unproductive. I did get into webpage design and creation. In fact, I convinced my father to create a website for his business and I convinced him to use eBay as a way of moving his stuff that didn't sell right away. My father was quite stubborn, I pretty much had to convince my mother first, then create it then show him to convince him. eBay was not much different. The sad thing is I pretty much forgotten everything I had learn, but not to mentioned, much of what I knew is now outdated.

Apart from working with my dad with his business (which was history related), I did manage to go back to school to become a teacher. The kicker was three people. My girlfriend a the time, my best friends girlfriend and my sister. Since I had so much time on my hands, I helped raised my sister's kids; two boys. They both see me as like a second father even today. My girlfriend was 10 years older than me and she had a daughter from her previous marriage. Despite a very rocky beginning, she would prefer that I help her with her homework. All three encouraged me to go into teaching. With their encouragement, I apprehensively took some classes. The first class I took had us observe and then under guidance, teach one class. I was nervous as heck. I didn't really it was humanly possible to sweat that much. However, my the end, I was hooked. I really enjoyed the experience. Later, when I was a student teacher. I asked my cooperating teacher does the nerves ever go away. He lied! He said they didn't. However, it did help me. He turned out to be a great mentor and friend.
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As you can see it was an all girls catholic school. The funny thing is my mentor was a hardcore cigar smoker, but I would not start to spoke cigars for another 15 years.

My freedom also allowed me to indulge in online activities. At fist, I was into the chats, then later I was message boards, then later listservs. My progression towards anarchism began here. I actually started of listening to Rush Limbaugh. In fact, in my worse period I started listening to him. This is back when I spent most of my time painting miniatures because I was into miniature wargames at the time. I was horrible painter. More on this later. I would identify myself as conservaive, though I would deny like Thomas the apostle. One guy actually identify me as a "goddamn conservative." The irony is I was actually pretty socially liberal. Years later, during the republican primaries, I found myself without anyone I could identify with. I even looked to the democrats. I actually read a speech by Clinton at a conservative democrats meeting (don't ask me when or where though, I do not recall). Years later, when the conservative media called him a liberal, I had a good laugh. Anyway, on the internet, I found my home; the Libertarian Party.

When I first joined I did everything to help promote my new party. I went to conventions and passed out the "World's Smallest Quiz" in the hopes of first identifying potential libertarians, but then trying to convince them to join the LP. I also campaigned for LP candidates in local elections by handing out fliers to passersby. I also promoted the principles of libertarianism online.

One question I always get is why the name PikeStance. In the early days I often shorten it to Pike. In fact, I am still known as Pike on some areas of the internet. I am also known as St. Pike or Saint Pike or American football forums, since I am a New Orleans Saints fan. People often asked if I am named after the fraternity that shares the nickname or the fish. The Pike refers to man's early weapon. A weapon still in use today, though its role has be presserved for ceremonial uses only. However, hunting and gathering society still use the weapon today. The Stance refers to how Pikeman stand in a defensive posture. In essence, it represents both the sharpness of my argument and my vigor in my defense of my position. It proved to be a fitting moniker. Funny, despite my "retirement" and my timidity in discussion, I am still accused of being aggressive. If you want to know how I was in the past consider that. I could be a real SOB back in the day. I am not bragging, I am really quite embarrassed by my behavior. Ironically, despite my vigor, I was still consider a gentleman debater! I was asked on several occasion to write for various publications. I also served for two years as a moderator on AOL. Of course, it is easy to do these things when you 'work' for the family business, referee in the afternoon and weekends, and attend school part- time.

That pretty much sums up my moment of luxury. It ended when I moved to Chicago in 2001.
In this time, I went from drinking and doing drugs to excess to very little. I went from uncertainty and a lack of direction to new found path to life. While this may have been the worse part of my life, it formed the basis on who I would become. Personally, I don't think I would change it much. If I were to change it, I may not come to travel as extensively has I would have later in life. I like where I am at now, though I do have some regrets in pains I would had liked to change.

Thanks you for reading...

Updated April 04, 2015 at 06:54 AM by PikeStance