There are several ways to guess that a person is a drug addict. One clue is someone railing a little too much against drugs. Chances are he’s a druggie. For about a year I’d frequently see an elderly gentleman in places like McDonalds. It became a little noticeable that every time someone approached he’d only nod and mumble a barely audible ‘hello.’ He also has a rather sinister look about him. On the tall side. Thin. Must have been in good shape when younger. The appearance sparked my nosey nature. It took a year of engaging him in simple conversations to discover that indeed there is a lot more to him than what it appears. His field: Intelligence. A spy. Not the government kind spying on other countries. Big companies hired him to learn secrets in competing companies. He had many interesting stories to tell from all over the world. Philippines, China, Singapore, Indonesia, Russia, Middle East and Germany. He had a sidekick with him most of the time. He seemed to ignore the gentleman. Not once seeing them in engaged in any conversation. The sidekick turned out to be his son-in-law, a licensed practicing medical doctor. Has anyone known a doctor whose handwriting can be read. Does this arrogance develop from the prestigious class level. Anyone who thinks so better not go to Germany, where a school teacher garners more respect than a doctor gets in America. And a doctor over there is God. Questioning, getting a second opinion, or suing a doctor is not possible in German. For arrogance, a completely self centered manner, certain the whole world revolves around him, the spy’s doctor holds the number one spot. Anyone in the family he visits, within minutes of sitting down on a couch, he empties his bag, looking for things, the living room begins looking like a trash dump. That not bad enough, he does not just ask others to pick things up, he demands it. With no preamble like; “could you pick that up for me?” He says; “Pick that up for me!” with a very bombastic, “Please!!” Which makes his request even worse. Needless to say, he’s not a very welcome visitor anywhere. It’s probably a little expensive to be so self consumed and messy. Not being friendly enough with any of the family members, it’s only a guess that maybe his manner might have something to do with his obvious bad financial condition. In terrible financial condition myself one time, I needed to find a job. Seeing a Lear jet taxi in would ordinarily not make me take a second look. Until seeing the right seat in the front office empty. I sauntered over. Asking only; “are you solo?” An airplane person does not need to hear any words to know the level of experience in another airplane nut. Where and how someone walks on the field is enough. The pilot answered; “yeah, we’re looking for a right seat, you typed in Lear?” “No Sir, Hansa.” The Lear winds up belonging to a house builder in Tennessee named Denny Hastings. I met a gentleman by the name of Eddie Mathews, who inherited thirteen and a half million dollars. He apparently got a little ping from my blond bombshell girlfriend sporting a set of forty four double D magnums. She explained that her boyfriend was looking to buy a piece of land to build a shop on to make airplane parts. “Well, y’all jes c’mon ova ta mah place, ah got three hundred fifty acres, set up right there.” Mister Mathews assured me on a stack of bibles the family farm would never be sold. So little five foot one Eva and I built a hanger two hundred feet long with a clear span of sixty two feet. To this day, not a single builder, no matter how experienced, has guessed correctly how her and I put those trusses up with no machinery or helper. The runway proved to be an even bigger project than the hanger. Not to mention me spending all the money I had. Just getting started producing Piper PA-12 fuselages when everything went south. I’d not believe it had I not lived through it. Hardly seems possible that anyone would be able to go through thirteen million in three years no matter how deep into drugs. But he did. Lost everything, along with it, so did I. Wound up working for Mister Hastings. Becoming friends with a gentleman of his caliber almost worth losing everything for. For openers, he spent an immediate $50,000 to move a building onto his ranch for Eva and I to live in with not one word spoken about rent or any of the costs. His is a very interesting success story. He began as a high school history teacher. Upon meeting his parent, it became obvious the man did not inherit anything. completely self made. Myself being a history buff, we talked endlessly. On one ride to his mothers house to set up a new bed for her, certain he will recall this ride, I asked; “Denny, what do you attribute your success to?” This was his precise answer. “Nothing special. I had no plans. But it has always been my nature to put everyone else before myself and that has always come back to me by ten fold.”
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