Arthur Miller would never have married Marilyn Monroe if he had titled his book, “Nervous Breakdown of a Salesman,” but that is how I discovered how life is all about Race, Religion, Politics, Sex and Money. I asked to be a salesman because I needed Money and like asking a bank, if you need it don’t ask.
After I was fired the first time, I joined 40+, listed my ten life accomplishments, practiced interviewing and got another chance to hear, “I hate to let you go.” When my demonic boss convinced to get on my knees and accept Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior, I knew my childhood confusion about religion had caught up with me.
Growing up on Mooney Avenue as a Christian Scientist in a fifty-fifty neighborhood of Catholics and Protestants, religion, not race, politics, sex and money was my problem. At Walnut Hills High School, one-third Jew, one-third Black, one third White I did not fit in and retreated to Mooney Avenue as soon as the last bell rang. My first three years at the University of Cincinnati I also now drove home as soon as my last class ended. Twenty-one was my personal emancipation year – voted for Goldwater, joined Sigma Chi Fraternity, moved into the fraternity house, graduated from Sunday school, got drunk, wrecked my ’63 Corvette Stingray, took my first aspirin and left my celibate ‘emotional geek’ lifestyle for greener hedonist streets beyond Mooney Avenue.
Graduated in ’68 with a B.S. of Architecture, magnum cum ‘skin of my teeth,’ joined the US Marine Corps for three years of ‘man-up’ training, voted for George Wallace, married an adult child of alcoholic German-Catholic parents and moved to nove-cuatro-nove, Avenida Higeninoplis, Sao Paulo, Brasil. Jimmy Carter sent Roslyn and a Black guy from the State Department to preach human rights to Latin America’s dictator leaders, giving me my first glimpse of race, religion, politics, and sex in action.
The money part I learned the hard way, while my engineer co-workers lived within their means my ACAP partner and I augmented my salary with loans from nine different banks. The jig was up and I returned to Christian Science to save my fiscal ass. It did not work so I tried attaching an EMBA to my CV and pursuing a sales career which led to my mid-life crash. Having clinically ‘bottomed out’ I then qualified for, so far, lifetime membership in AA.
Substituting ‘Higher Power’ for the God word was a Godsend and freed me up to go back to worrying about Money, Sex, Politics and Race in that order. My second marriage alleviated my Sex and Money worries