Her hands again totally full in caring for a 1 year old and 6 year old after already raising 2 girls that became wonderful ladies, Lita was a whirlwind of activity.

The consummate multi-tasker, she would toggle back & forth across the street vacuuming, dusting, warming up Tappy’s formula, making sure that my hair was neatly combed for school and already preparing dinner.

When she was across the street with Tappy after I got home from school, I used the “me time” by setting fires in our bathroom garbage.

As well as leering wantonly at the ladies in negligees and gartered stockings in the Frederick’s of Hollywood ads featured in the 1950’s Screenland and Photoplay movie mags that my mom bought.

Playing with my “Jack-In-The Box” very, very early in life, I was under the same sexual family stronghold that spiritually imprisoned Lita, Lito and my father.

Thank God, Lita learned her lesson and broke free from this bondage at only 16.

It took me almost twice as long.

On one of her longer visits to the corner grocery, I grabbed the opportunity to graduate from a 9 year old apprentice arsonist to a seasoned veteran.

Knowing that BBQ lighter fluid worked much better than hairspray, I took a can of Kingsford with me and lit a fire under 1 of the new students busting at the seams Longfellow Elementary School bungalows.

Just wanting to hide under there to not be seen, a wind kicked up and the flames hit the bottom of the wooden trailer.

As Arnold said so wisely “hasta la vista, baby” I scurried home.

As the fire engines raced to extinguish the blaze flying by Lita and Tappy on their way home, she was puzzled as to who would do something so stupid like that.

Wonder who?

As mentioned previously ~ even with the best loving intentions, fear-based Lita watched me like a hawk.

She almost had heart attacks watching me ride down the steep San Bruno mountain streets no-hands on my new 10 speed and then on the beautiful mahogany and cherry wood skateboards that Lito made me.


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