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Joe Zullo
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Then
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Now
September 29, 1951 property manager Married 2 2009-04-19 17:38:02

    That Long Yellow Brick Road

 

There I was without a plan

And I looked up and met a man

Straw coming through his hat and hand.

 

Told me the secret to getting a brain

Go down this road and back again.

I followed the yellow through poppy & vale,

It was four years a-schoolin under my sail,

When this wizard-man came to me

And said here…. This here’s a degree.

WOW! Did I feel smart?  Was it really me?

 

Got back on that road,

Lookin into myself.

Met a metal man who squeeked a secret,

“Keep on the road and whisper sweet nothings to the birds”,

It’s sure to be heart-warming;

So, I did that and it was heart-warming,

Enough that I nested for a short while with a ladybird.

 

Bird’s, they fly with the seasons,

And so, I left my bird and got to flyin with ‘em.

Flew north to Oregon,

God’s country! Tall fir trees, high mountains

With sparkles dazzling their streaming waters.

Got Uncle Sam to pay me for a year to study his woods.

 

Found  a new ladybird for nesting,

But, kept thinking about that strawman,

Then followed that brick road back to SDSU.

After awhile,that wizard-man gave me another one a those papers,

Sayin I was even smarter. 

Gee wiz!  Can you believe it!

There it was in black & white…..says “with all the rights and privileges”.

 

So, I be taken those smart papers all over town,

Then all over the county and state,

Then to the next state alookin for work.

But, all them fellers would tell me the same,

Boy, you are smart, but we ain’t got no jobs!

Imagine that!

Didn’t tell me that fore I started that schoolin!

 

My ladybird & I migrated back to Oregon

And nested for 9 months….her a workin,

Me a lookin and a mopin!

Finally, NASA offered me a job.

Talked to a lion-man about my fear of leaving.

Said I needed some courage and to just get back on the yellow road.

I did…all alone.

 

Followed it till I saw cowboys. 

It was Houston-town for my work;

Bar-B-Que brisket, Texas Two-step, slow-talkers,

But, no courage, till my ladybird migrated down,

And we was nesting safely again.

Galveston bay, tar in the sand, cars parked on the sandy beach,

Long neck beer bottles, and armadillo road kill.

Yep! Cowboy country.

Bought a house & promptly got layed-off.

Help, Mr. Wizard!

 

Rescued by a hi-tech company in Huntsville, Alabama.

Weren’t no cowboys….that was a dern good change.

Took me and my ladybird, put us in a new world of

Computer graphics that took-off like a rocketship.

 

Why, that wizard-man would of been proud of me…. I sure was!

So would that lion-man cause after while,

My ladybird and I went bird-doggin separately.

We were in a rocketship holdin on for the ride

With thousands of other young, bright people

Creating a new world of design on a screen.

My ole my!  still don’t know how they get

All them fancy lines on the screen! 

But sure enough, they fancilydo.

 

Became a travelin man,

Doin a song and dance,

Same step, but to different people in different lands.

Got to see the world.  Didn’t even have to join the Navy… Imagine that!

 

But, you can only be king of the mountain for so long till

Every other company dangling in digitals tries to push ya off the hill. 

And so, after many years the downslide began.

I still hung in there for another ten years. 

Made a good career,

Sold a lot of digitals, met a lot of smart people,

Laid on the beaches of Greece and Australia,

Smelled the incense and watched the Buddhist monks in Korea,

Attended a mystical wedding with a thousand pigeons in Singapore,

Got into the corrida with a young bull in Spain,

Eyed the beauties in the Moulin Rouge,

Went a little wild in Amsterdam,

Fell in love touring Tuscany with my fiancé,

Married that girl of my life,

Had my wonderful son at age 49,

Got laid-off at 50,

Went back to school again,

A talkin on a phone helping librarians

All over the world keep their software

Managing their libraries…  gee whiz!

Quit my job!

Joined a husband and wife in their VW van

And drove 11,000 miles to Alaska and back;

Strange couple made it a stranger trip.

 

Now, I volunteer at the 2nd grade helping with math and reading,

Today I flew kites with the kids,

I tilled my garden,

I took a noon nap,

I read “Little house on the prairie” with my son.

I wrote a short story for some former high school folks to read.

Now, I’m going to bed.    Good-night.    10:58PM 4/17/2009