Life…Some Lessons Learned, Some Hard Lessons For Sure

  I really do not like Forrest Gump, in fact I hate him but I do believe in his motto that life is like a box of chocolates and one never knows what they are going to get. 
 When I was born I had no idea what I would get into and no one in the history of mankind can say that they had any inkling of what their destiny was from the moment they were born.
 I grew up like almost every other kid, meaning I had parents and all of the creature comforts of a home, but I feel that being I was adopted I had some difficulties with that issue itself, and being adopted I felt completely as though I had been dropped off from another planet.(which now it appears I was)
 I never felt accepted, or even a part of anything, and in fact I can comfortably say that I was always the last guy to be picked for any team sport that was arranged by the school.(shit, kids were nasty in those days and no one wanted the adopted kid on their team)  I always felt dissassociated from the world and at times from even myself.
 I grew up and harboured great resentments over the fact that I was adopted, and by the time I was a teen, felt that I fit in nowhere in the community I grew up in. My adoptive parents were/are Mennonites and after years and years of being teased and harassed because of my adoption, knew full well that there would never be a place for me there or anywhere.
 I didn’t have a friend that I could turn to, and my parents were disconnected from the realities of the day which included raising a home full of adopted children. There was never a time that i felt I could turn to them to ask for their emotional support through my earliest years. I’m not badmouthing nor blaming them, I am only telling you like it is. I just felt as though I was totally alone. 
 By the time I was 17 I had moved. Not in the usual way, but had become a guest of the Queen in one of her royal facilities, a jail. I still have no idea what persuaded me to fuck up so badly, but it wasn’t anyone else, it was only myself. It took years of self exploration and a personal quest to save myself from myself in order to make things change for me. It took years to discover that I was only to blame.
 Not having anyone to blame for my errors except for me, I still had difficulty accepting responsibility for my actions and repeatedly remained resident in the penal system until the age of 24. My crimes were a succession of property offences that were borne out of stupidity. There were never any armed offences, armed robberies(as some poor fool claimed in  an anonymous post on this blog)or anything. All of my offences were to do with property, nothing more and nothing less.
  Everyone who has ever met me in the past twenty years can say that I have always been honest  when telling the story of my life. In fact I have no fear in telling anyone anything related to where I’ve been and what i’ve done. The greatest benefit that I can see is that I have gained a unique perspective on life and through sharing those perspectives I can perhaps help someone from wasting a chunk of their life as I have.
 There is no end to how sorry I feel for the mistakes I have made in my life, but really, after 20 some odd years of personal freedom I have discovered that there are some people out there who love to play the role of the creepy stalking inspector from Les Miserables…you know who and what you are, and to you I must say I feel truly sorry for you and your sad and sorrowful life. It must be a miserable existence to have to read this blog daily and comment in such a derogatory way…but then again, most of your life has been spent promoting useless information and doing nothing real other than being a judge of some men, and a jailor of others. 
 I will continue to carry on…as my life is always the usual. You on the other and will continue to feel bitterness for whatever…perhaps you’re pissy because years ago, while chained to your silly half way house job, you realized that someone else could easily achieve…while someone like you would remain forever chained to the limited potential that you had created for yourself. I knew from the moment I left that prison in 1988 that I would not be returning.I served my time to the fullest, and was fully discharged without any issues. You on the other hand seem to have issues going back more than 20 years. Go get yourself some help Paul, it sounds like your job has gotten the best of you.
 The good thing about my life thus far is that I have learned some good and serious lessons, while on the other hand, having spent a fair amount of time in prison amongst liars and thieves, I can easily identify a pretty good CON game,and I can recognize a person who hasn’t learned a thing when I see one. In politicians I see the same attributes that many convicts posess.The difference is minimal. The real only difference is the pay scale.
 So let me tell you….politics, and the people in it, whether they be priests or poets, ex-cops or social workers, economists or lecturists…all have one thing in common, and that is the ability to con you out of your vote, your dollars, and your confidence.
 So, what can a guy like me tell a bunch of retired professionals? Lots I think. At least I have no fear of my own skeletons, and at least I can speak honestly about what life is about instead of the constant barrage of bullshit that generally spills from most folks’ lips.
 But really what I’ll be talking about is how damned lucky I am to have this son with Autism, and how damned lucky society is that I am at least strong enough to stand up for him. So the way I look at it I have saved the community hundreds of thousands of dollars in costs related to maintaining him,(that’s if he would have been placed into community care) while on the other hand I have provided unequivocal support for a person that could not defend themselves. I kinda like to think I would do the same for you, and for anyone, no matter how difficult a time I have had with you or anyone else. 
 Me, i’m glad to be an ex-convict….I can place a healthy emphasis on ex…..but what can you say about yourself? I survived and grew, and you remained resident in your mental squalor. I’m glad not to have to be fearful of myself or anyone else. And me, I kinda think that my skeleton is… the greatest supporting factor in my ability to stand up. I’m glad not to be a jelly fish.
  Anyone that wants to hear this entire story…is more than welcome to come around and talk….anytime. 
 Jim Bender, Woodstock



  1. Anonymous
    Posted January 1, 2009 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

    You are a brave man to lay bare your soul as you did.I’ve always said that the last person who was perfect was crucified 2000 years ago so those who reveille in throwing the first stone should look at themselves instead.

  2. Anonymous
    Posted January 2, 2009 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

    You have completed your sentence right? That’s good enough for me.

  3. Dave Nadalin
    Posted January 3, 2009 at 6:54 am | Permalink

    Your a good, intelligent person Jim and with character. I’ll take that over a phoney clown with a clean wrapper.

    PS. Read the 10 most influential Woodstonians on “Woodstock Today.”

  4. Anonymous
    Posted January 3, 2009 at 10:26 am | Permalink

    Yeah Jim. You’re right up there with pillars of the community like Cliff Zaluski, Ron Fraser and Arnold Spina. 🙂 Some list.

    I couldn’t help but notice that the one councillor who has consistently stood up for the public interest and endured considerable personal stress and both public and private assaults on her character in the process was left off the list.

    I’d like to submit my own list of the most influental Woodstonians. It’s a list of one.

    Deb Tait.

  5. Anonymous
    Posted January 25, 2009 at 8:35 pm | Permalink

    I reached for my tissues, such a tear jerker of a story. Blame, blame, blame, always somebody else. You robbed and now you’re “proud”. Come on, once a crook, always a crook.

  6. jim bender
    Posted January 26, 2009 at 9:37 am | Permalink

    I hope you ate those tissues after.
    No, I do not feel “proud’ as you claim in your anonymous post.
    But I am proud that i have balls big enough to sign my name to my posts.
    It must suck to be you having to hide behind your anonymous posts.
    Obviously if there was any truth at all to your statements, you’d sign your name. But there isn’t and you know how libelous that doubt you will never sign your name ever.
    And why you waste your time reading this blog is beyond me as it obviously drives you mad that Im writing the thing.
    So, be a man, sign your name to these wacked out posts of yours so we can at least see what kind of shit lives in our community.

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