All posts by myrattledcage

I am a very proud gay man that has been living with HIV/AIDS for over 22 years. During this time my life has changed in so many ways some for the worst but mostly for the better. During those 22 years I managed to get both my Bachelor of Arts in Communication with concentrations in Public Relations and Technical Communication and my Master of Arts in Communication from The University of Texas at San Antonio. I also gained and have kept a loving partner for 18 years and we now live with our five dogs in the order they arrived at our home – Crissy, Zailey, Little Bitty, Sadie and Stitchy! I am so blessed with a most loving family to include my two sisters and their husbands; my three nieces and their respective husbands or boyfriends, and four of the most adorable great nieces and great nephew that a great-uncle could ever have. My interests include cooking, reading, playing with my dogs, and of course making sure that I am as healthy as possible after many years of being an alcoholic and addict. Yes, I am very open and honest about myself and you never know what you will read on “My Rattled Cage”!!!!

#SoCS 9/26/20 – Container

Linda has provided us with the prompt of container for this week’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday.

There is nothing worse than trying to find lids to the containers in the plastic to go cabinet in the kitchen. Wait, there is something worse, when you specifically buy containers with lids that stack together and your husband refuses to fall in line with that practice.

I cannot tell you how many I say, “Mr. Herrera, I buy these types of containers because of their ability to help save space and to keep the containers and lids together in one simple place. You see on Sundays I cook Sunder dinner and I deliver food to some very special people – my mother in law, the Sisters of the Holy Spirit and some other friends of ours.

It is very annoying searching for containers and then not finding the lids because he has put them in a drawer where they don’t belong.

On a different topic, I am getting better a placing certain things that have come up in my recovery into different MENTAL containers, some would say compartments – but aren’t they really the same thing?

For example when the old resentment player decides to suddenly crank up, I shut it off and throw it back into the far reaches of the resentment container in the brain. I have been blessed that over the last 8 months and 22 days I have not had to throw the desire to drink into it’s mental container – because I haven’t had any desire to drink.

What I do have to make sure stays in their respective mental containers are my character defects of impatience, sometimes being impulsive, speeding (for which I just completed my Defensive Driving Course for getting a ticket for going 86 in a 70 on a country road in Eagle Lake, Colorado County, Texas on 9/5/20 when I went to see my family on a spur of the moment trip), finding faults in others that I do not like about myself. I could go on and on with this list.

How do I keep those things where they belong? I wake up every day and thank my Higher Power whom I choose to call God for waking mu ep and not just bringing me to. I ask for His guidance in all that I do by turning everything over to the care of God as I understand him. I make meetings whether online or face to face. I do the best right thing. I do not pick up that first drink. At the end the day I again thank my Higher Power for being my partner in recovery JUST FOR TODAY! I am continuing to work on my 4ht step and I am in constant contact with my sponsor and I have the best support system in the world.

That’s what’s in My Rattled Cage today, thanks for stopping by.

#SoCS 9/19/20 – Celebration

Linda has given us the prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday of “-tion.”

Reverberation on CONGRATULATIONS are in order for me because I turned 54 on Monday 9/14 and I did it SOBER!! As many of you know Between February 14, 2014 and September 14, 2016, the day I turned 50, I had 2 1/2 years of sobriety and then the alcoholic in my sabotaged me and I hit every haunt and did everything and more the old alcoholic used to do. This in turn became a three day binge which became a major depression and being off of work for a few weeks. I have had a lot of issues with relapse and recovery since that time however today it 8 months and 15 days SOBER.

You have read on my blog before about my epiphany a few months ago, I love doing service, in fact I truly believe that in 2016 when I turned 50, the whole reasoning behind my major relapse and then continuing to have issues with relapse and recovery – was because I had gotten mad at folks in my home group the Goliad Group and my online group – and I quit doing any type of service.

You see, I always say, I cannot keep what I do not give away freely!!!!!! That is a true statement if I am doing some sort of service for my fellow alcoholics then I cannot keep my sobriety. Today I chair meetings at my face to face home group and in my online home group. I share in every meeting that I can, because I never know who I will touch with my words of experience, strength and hope.

Reverberation of CONGRATULATIONS also are in order for my home group the Goliad Group which had their first Alcoholics anonymous meeting on September 13, 1964 and today we will be having our 56th Anniversary BBQ CELEBRATION with a speaker who has 24 years of sobriety at 6:15PM. If you are in San Antonio and would like to join us – we will be serving at 4:30PM. There is a suggested $5 donation as well. We are at 537 Avondale, San Antonio 78223 and you can call us at (210) 534-3937 any time if you need to know when we have meetings etc.

I am proud to be SOBER JUST FOR TODAY!!! That’s what’s in My Rattled Cage, thanks for stopping by!

Late #SoCS 9/12/20 – Collar

I had my pictures ready yesterday 9/12/20 and I was ready to write this post and then the day just rana way from me. Linda gave us “collar” for our prompt for this week’s #SoCS.

I thought what a perfect prompt because all of our babies got a new collar this week. In order of pictures – Crissy, Little Bitty, our newest baby Lucy, Sadie, Stitchy and Zailey.

We sure do love our babies and I hope every one has a blessed week.

That’s what’s in My Rattled Cage, thanks for stopping by!!

#Socs 98/5/20 – “Sharp as a …..”

Today Linda has given us “sharp” as our prompt for this week’s #SoCS.

When I was younger I would be called sharp as a whip. As I became a teenager I became sharp as a pencil. As I moved through adulthood i was ranging from being sharp as a tack to being as sharp as a double edged sword with my fiery tacky sense of humor at times along with my very sharp tongue.

Today I deal a different type of sharpness. You see I have always been a go-getter especially when it comes to my work ethic. I currently find myself being called sharp in how I work, but I am also being called eager. Eager can be both a positive and a negative meaning that it can definitely be a sharp double edged sword.

The other double edged sword that I have to be very careful with is my recovery. I am very cognoscente that I must not stand still in my recovery, If I do I will be cut by that edge of the sword that cares nothing about me and my recovery.

September is National Recovery Month. We all know I am an open book and I am proud that I am in recovery! The last few years have been a struggle, but I am so proud to say I have 8 months of sobriety today. Unfortunately it took my husband Cruzer having open heart surgery in December of 2019 and me not taking it well for me to really wake up, but I am woke!

I am blessed to have a huge support network in my family, friends and my fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous. But it is important to note that the number one thing that I have in my recovery is my Higher Power whom choose to call GOD!

If you know someone who is struggling with any type of addiction please let them know about a really great supplement to face to face meetings. In The Rooms that has meetings all day everyday for almost every type of addiction you can think of. I have a home group online Global Steps AA, that has a total of 64 meetings per week and just happens to meet in the church of In The Rooms!!!

So in order for me to be sure and handle the edge of the sword that does care about my recovery the way that I do, I do some pretty simple steps. I remain sharp as a tack in regards to my character defects coming to the surface and nip them in the bud. I thank my higher power whom I choose to call God every morning for allowing me to wake up and not just come to. I am in constant contact with my sponsor. I am currently working on my 4th step.

I love doing service, in fact I truly believe that in 2016 when I turned 50, the whole reasoning behind my major relapse and then continuing to have issues with relapse and recovery – was because I had gotten mad at folks in my home group the Goliad Group and my online group – and I quit doing any type of service.

You see, I always say, I cannot keep what I do not give away freely!!!!!! That is a true statement if I am doing some sort of service for my fellow alcoholics then I cannot keep my sobriety. Today I chair meetings at my face to face home group and in my online home group. I share in every meeting that I can, because I never know who I will touch with my words of experience, strength and hope.

So as long I continue to work this sharp program of recovery, I WILL REMAIN SHARP AS A TACK!!!!

That’ what’s in MY Rattled Cage, thanks for stopping by!!

One-Liner Wednesday – Always makes me laugh

I love this!! Thanks Linda!!

Photo: Winston, my beagle/Basset hound cross with an expression that says “Seriously?” with the caption, “Outside of a dog, a book is a man’s best friend. Inside of a dog, it’s too dark to read.” ~ Groucho Marx


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#SoCS 8/29/20 – “More Than a hundred”

Linda has given us “more than a hundred” as the prompt for today’s #Socs.

Do you remember the days of the first phonographs. Then came the modern record player. Then there was the reel to reel players and my favorite music that my mother would play on the reel to reel tape player was Elvis Presley’s Christmas. Next we saw the eight track tape players – my sister used to play on her record player and eight track tape player a lot of the Beach Boys, Lynrd Skynrd, Janice Joplin, The Doors and all kinds of 70s rock.

Next came the cassette tape and players. Many of you probably remember your first Sony Walkman and then their were so may knock offs. The next thing that came along were compact discs (CDs) which also had its own version of the Sony Walkman CD player. Then came the MP3 player and boy howdy did Apple make a few million on that with the iPod. With streaming services such as Apple Music, I Heart Radio, Sirius XM and all the other ways to listen to music – we all have had to adapt to the way we do it.

I have been a customer of T-Mobile since 2002. When the first iPhone came out in 2007 T-Mobile did not offer it. In fact T-Mobile did not offer the iPhone to their customers until April 2013. I hated the hype about the iPhone because I was never going to be able to get one, they were way to expensive for me. My first iPhone was a 4s and since that time I have moved up and I currently have the Red iPhone 11.

Where am I going with this,? I have more than a hundred music CDs that range from almost every genre of music. The problem is I no longer listen them because I have over 3,000 songs in my extensive Apple Music catalogue and that is how I listen to my music. I will say that when I took my road trip to Lamar, Missouri on Mother’s Day weekend, I did listen to some of my CDs in my brand new 2020 Mistsubishi Mirage that I did not know had a CD player until I did some investigating in my car.

That’s what’s in My Rattled Cage, thanks for stopping by!!

Late SoCS 8/22/20 -“Brush It Off”

Linda gave us the prompt of “brush” for this weeks #SoCS.

How is it that people do not and cannot follow traffic situations. On my main thoroughfare S. Presa St. there has been some utility work being done and the left hand side of the street is closed down with detour signs everywhere.

I drive this street everyday and I kid you not, every single time at least one driver decides to go around the barricade and drive on the wrong side of the street and then proceed to get mad when they almost hit me. Luckily, with my brand new car, I drive with so much more attention being paid to my surroundings and the other drivers that can often be idiots.

This brush with accidents daily would make you think well, why don’t you go a different way. I don’t drive a different way because I know that that side of the street is blocked and that a good driver will pay attention to the detour and not continue to give others a brush with accidents.

This kind of reminds me of the 3 1/2 years of my struggle with returning to my recovery from alcoholism and addiction to cocaine. Every time that I decided during this time to pick up a drink and not knowing when to stop I was bringing myself ever closer to that brush with not ever coming back. Some days there were even brushes with death and yet I just could not pick myself up and BRUSH all that crap off.

Today I have over 7 1/2 months of recovery and everyday I get up and I brush that negative crap out of my head and brush what litlle hair I have and I get on with my day and I do the most important thing.

I don’t pick up a drink – JUST FOR TODAY!!!! Let’s all get up and brush the crap away!!

That’s what’s in My Rattled Cage, thanks for stopping by!

#SLS 7/19/20 – Sunshine cake, sugar pie on a picnic

Today Jim has given us the prompts of Baking/Bread/Cake/Pie/Picnic for #SLS. I kid you not, I have over 3,000 songs in my Apple Music library and I could not find any songs that met the criteria. So I did what all writers do when they are looking for their topic – I did some research and I found three oldies but goodies. So yes, you are getting a three-fer!!

That’s what’s in My Rattled Cage, thanks for stopping by!!

The first is from Bing Crosby called Sunshine Cake which he sung in the movie Riding High in 1950.

Lyrics

We ought to bake a sunshine cake
It does more good than a big thick steak

Start with a tablespoon of trouble
Then add a smile and let it bubble up
We ought to bake a sunshine cake
It isn’t really so hard to make
Fresh tears, a pound or two of pleasure
Kind words you needn’t use a measure cup

It’s not from a recipe book
You don’t have to be a good cook
Or run to the oven and look

With such a simple dish, all you do is wish
So why not bake a sunshine cake
Of course it may keep your dreams awake

Friends say there’s nothing like the flavor
Don’t wait to do your friends a favor
And for goodness sake, let’s bake a sunshine cake

It’s got vitamins A, vitamins B
Vitamins L-O-V-E
If you’re fat, it’s for that
If you’re thin, stuff it in

What’s wrong if you get a double grin
We ought to bake a sunshine cake

It’s not from a recipe book
You don’t have to be a good cook

Or run to the oven and look
With such a simple dish, all you do is wish
So why not bake a sunshine cake
Of course it may keep your dreams awake
Friends say there ain’t nothing like the flavor
Don’t wait to do your friends a favor
And for goodness sake, let’s bake a sunshine cake

Source: LyricFind

Songwriters: Johnny Burke / James Van Heusen

Sunshine Cake lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Universal Music Publishing Group

The second one is from 1955 and the Mc Guire Sisters called “Theme from Picnic” is a popular song, originated in the 1955 movie Picnic, starring Kim Novak and William Holden, which was based on the play of the same name. The song is often referred to simply as “Picnic.” The music was written by George Duning

Lyrics

On a picnic morning without a warning
I looked at you and somehow I knew

On a day for singing
My heart went winging
A picnic grove was our rendezvous

You and I in the sunshine
We strolled the fields and farms
At the last light of evening
I held you in my arms

Now when days grow stormy
And lonely for me
I just recall picnic time and you

Now when days grow stormy
And lonely for me
I just recall picnic time and you

Songwriters: George W Duning

The third song is from The Four Tops, I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie, Honey Bunch from .

Can’t Help My Self

Ooh
Sugar pie, honey bunch
You know that I love you
I can’t help myself
I love you and nobody else
In and out my life (in and out my life)
You come and you go (you come and you go)
Leaving just your picture behind
And I kissed it a thousand times

When you snap your finger or wink your eye
I come a-running to you
I’m tied to your apron strings
And there’s nothing that I can do (ooh)

Can’t help myself (no)
No, I can’t help myself (ooh)

‘Cause sugar pie, honey bunch (sugar pie, honey bunch)
I’m weaker than a man should be
I can’t help myself
I’m a fool in love, you see

Wanna tell you I don’t love you
Tell you that we’re through and I try
But every time I see your face (can’t help myself)
I get all choked up inside

When I call your name
Girl, it starts to flame (burning in my heart, tearing it all apart)
No matter how I try
My love I cannot hide

‘Cause sugar pie, honey bunch (sugar pie, honey bunch)
You know that I’m waiting for you (waiting for you)
I can’t help myself
I love you and nobody else, ooh

Sugar pie, honey bunch (sugar pie, honey bunch)
I’d do anything you ask me to (ask me to)
I can’t help myself
I want you and nobody else, ooh

Sugar pie, honey bunch (sugar pie, honey bunch)
You know that I love you (love you)
I can’t help myself
No, I can’t help myself, ooh

Sugar pie, honey bunch (sugar pie, honey bunch)
You know that I love you

Songwriters: Edward Jr. Holland / Lamont Dozier / Brian Holland