A Mirror into Ken's Past -- 1988

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Winter and Spring was a lot of the same stress as I had been under in the Fall and Winter. I was still trying to work things out with Dawn. Dawn had finally broken her engagement with Randy, but was still trying to work things out with Mark (and Mark's other girlfriend Marianna).

Late in January I received a letter from Lee Anne Wood, one of my College friends. Her boyfriend Rob Endicott had died around Christmas. I hadn't seen either of them since graduation in 1984. This one really hit me hard. Rob was one of those really charming (in his gruff way) people, and I always enjoyed his sense of humor, fun, and general wit. Apparently his kidney transplant that he had had the year before caused problems. The drugs he took for that broke down his immune system and he got hit by several problems at once. I had a crying jag from this that was really bad -- I had a hard time stopping. I remember that Dawn dropped by, and I cried on her shoulder for a bit. I wrote to Lee and we had a few letters back and forth (email wasn't a big thing at this point, the internet hadn't taken off, etc.), and then we basically stopped writing after that. At some point you just don't have enough in common with your old friends, and it's easier to let them go (a hard lesson to learn, but ...).

At some point in here about a year after my previous guitar had been destroyed, Phil decided he needed his guitar back. That was understandable. I reluctantly gave it back (only because I was fond of playing guitar and singing at events, not because of anything to do with Phil -- I was grateful to him for loaning it for so long!). I decided that I HAD to have a guitar, so Cynan took me to a guitar shop in the Haight area in San Francisco -- a small hole-in-the-wall shop (like most of them in that area). I told the man when I walked in that I was looking for a classical guitar, my price range, and that I wanted a wood case, not a cardboard one (the case upped the price, of course). He went into the back after saying "I think I have exactly what you're looking for." I tend to be suspicious about that kind of statement, but it seems that he was right. He came out with this stunning guitar of rosewood, with an ebony neck. It was exactly the right size. He let me play it a bit, I tuned it, and the sound was phenomenal -- mellow, beautiful ringing tones. I was in love. I didn't realize what I was looking at until I got it home and really went over the paperwork. The guitar is an Alvarez, and the paperwork included their life-time warranty, and a description of the process of making these guitars, and more. For those who know anything about Guitars you know this is a company with a great reputation. Everything is hand-made. I still have the guitar, although I don't play it as often as I used to. I painted the stag's heads from my device on the case, and then painted a (heraldic) rose on it, as I named the guitar "Rose". (This was long before I met Laurie Hupman, who chose "Rose" as her SCA name.)

At a housewarming party in late February for Michael ("Lemon Freshened") and his roommates I met someone who would mess with my head for awhile before she moved on to mess with some others. Gwen (Gwyndolyn Anne the Obscure). She and I had a hot and heavy thing going for a bit, all the while, I was also seeing Dawn. Talk about weird. I don't know how Dawn did it when she was seeing multiple people. In the process of that whole weirdness, I hurt Dawn pretty badly. Never mind that I'd been hurt by her and the things with Mark and Randy as well (to be fair, some of that was stuff I did to myself). It was just weird.

Flipping through my diary I realize that I dated Gwen longer than I remember: it looks like about two months but I was remembering a few weeks. She was another one good at head-games. What was worse was that somewhere in there, neither Jeff or I realized it, but she and Jeff went out for a bit while she was dating me. When Jeff and I each found out from the other about this, there were some odd problems between us, but they disappeared when Gwen did. The thing with Gwen came to a head on April 20 (according to my diary). We broke it off over the phone (figures) -- she said something about not being responsible for my emotions, and I managed to say some things that needed to be said (rather vehemently) -- I don't think that they stuck, unfortunately. Dawn was in the room when I did that, and was rather surprised at how angry I was (I don't think I ever really yelled at her ...). Gwen went on to destroy at least one marriage in the SCA, and relatively recently dropped out completely (after getting the Laurel, reigning as Princess of Cynagua once ...).

I was still seeing Dawn on and off. I also tried to date some other folk, but nothing really came of it. I saw Gail Cassafer once (Gwen's roommate from in that time frame), but things didn't click for me and I backed off. I'm not real sure what the problem was, but something in the back of my head said that I shouldn't do this. Gail and I are friends now, but that was awkward for a bit.

At BART fighter practice I flirted a lot with a girl named Lorna (SCA: Arianwen Katryn Deveraux) but nothing ever came of that. There were some others that I flirted with in there, but nothing came of any of those either ...

My diary skips a bit of time here and it's all a bit of a blur to me now.

In December I went to the movies with Kay Boatwright, Carolyn's roommate. The same sort of thing happened there that had happened with Gail. Maybe I was just getting gun-shy. I'd been burned often enough that I could have just been reacting badly. I tried to get things together with Kay a couple of times but somehow it never clicked. Probably just as well, but ...

Not much to add here. I was still seeing Dawn -- she was the important figure in my life in here. Not a whole lot changed in the way of friends in here. I saw a bit of Kay and Carolyn in here because we all hung around at BART. They became more important as time moved along ...

A Few Photos
(These are thumbnails, click on them to see larger versions with text explaining them)

Ken And Dawn

Scott and Rose

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