the badge

friday 22 january 2016


recently I was telling my friend about the one and only time since this whole mess began in 2007 that I have ever seen a federal badge. the subject came up because she’d been looking at federal badges on youtube.

it’s in my journals somewhere, and maybe I’ve even written about it before in this blog. but since I lack the ambition to go digging through blogs and journals, I’ll just write it here.

my journal would tell me the day, date and time that this particular federal show was staged. all I can say now at a three-year remove is that it was in 2012, in the fall, on a nice day. I was on my back porch, which faced a large alley that runs between third street and fourth in the hellhole I call turners trolls.

sitting there smoking on a very nice day, and down the alley comes walking a middle-aged man I’ve never seen before. this in itself is bizarre, because I sat smoking on those stairs countless times, and knew every face, every body, every voice that ever came down that alley day or night. turners is a small place, and the very center of town, where this happened, even smaller. if you pay attention, as I have been forced to do by the situation I’m in, you notice immediately the face that is new, the face that doesn’t belong.

so down the alley strolls the face that doesn’t fit, into my yard, and right over to me smoking there on my back stairs. he walks over to me so purposefully, so intentionally, never casting his face around to see if there’s someone else he can talk to, that I can only conclude, both then and now, that I was his destination in the first place. that it was me and no one else he was gunning for, so to speak.

he asks me about the vacant house next to mine, which is for sale by the bank that foreclosed on it. but as his questions continue, he reveals that it isn’t really the house he cares about, but the man from whom the bank took it back.

at some point during this discourse he tells me his name, despite the fact that I haven’t asked and I don’t give a damn what his name is. I think he even shook my hand. and after he gets done with his unwanted name, he says he’s with the department of justice, and I become internally frozen. a fed, I’m thinking. this guy is actually saying out loud to me, the little piece of mob bait, that he’s a fed. this scene is already so otherworldly that I’m now stunned, and then he makes it worse: I’m required by law to tell you that I’m armed, and with that he opens his tan corduroy jacket to show me his badge on his chest and his gun in its holster.

being stunned, as an aside, is something that the feds constantly use against me. they know that some people with asperger’s get stunned and locked up very easily by the behavior of neurotypicals, and the feds take mean advantage of this tendency of mine to freeze as often as they see an opportunity to do it.

my head, mostly frozen, is asking a million questions: is this guy who came down the alley to find me and is showing me his gun going to arrest me for something? is this the day the feds finally come into my home, give me some documents, and tell me badge and gun and all that yes, I am their piece of bait, and yes, they have been protecting me undercover all this time and now that’s going to change? now they’re going to treat me like a person?

the things I want and need, the things I’ve waited for for years, do not happen. yet again. he does not come upstairs with me, give me documents, tell me that yes, I have been in undercover protection all this long time, but from now on things will be different. the protection will throw off its covers, I will be kept informed of what’s going on, and my needs and wishes as a human being will be considered.

he asks me to show him where the man who owned the empty house lives, and I take him there. it’s just down the alley. after we say our good-byes, he walks into the backyard and up to the first floor door. but I have told him that the man lives on the second floor.

I watch him from behind a dumpster. he never goes to the second floor. he looks around for me, doesn’t seem to know I’m still looming, and walks away into fourth street from the side yard.


DOJ agents do not walk down alleys in dinky little places like turners trolls, in broad daylight, carrying guns and pretending to look for deadbeat landlords. they do not, and I will never accept that they do. such a thing would only occur if they were pulling some kind of a stunt, protective or otherwise, on their own private piece of mafia bait, who happens to live in little turners. such a thing would only occur, here in tiny turners, if a stunt were being pulled on me.


why does a law enforcement person show me his gun and badge if he is not going to arrest me? okay, maybe he’s questioning me about someone who has committed a federal crime. but why do I have to see the gun for that? wouldn’t the badge suffice? I was answering his questions anyway, without all that, so why the drama? the man he was asking about is someone I loathe, someone from whom I tried three times to rent one lousy apartment in 2011, and who is certifiably insane. he hacked into one of my email accounts twice (is that a federal crime? doesn’t matter. I didn’t tell the agent about that), and for all I know he’s been up to all sorts of other chicanery. but if this man is truly the reason for the DOJ guy’s visit, why does he not knock on this man’s door and talk to him, show him the gun and the badge? why does he walk away?

I believe that most rational people would agree, if they thought about it purely objectively, that there was absolutely no plausible reason for this man to have behaved in the way that he did, except for the fact that I am what I am: the feds’ own piece of bait and property, on whom endless tricks are endlessly played. I think most rational people would conclude, as I did, that this man came down the alley specifically to see me, to show me his gun and badge loudly outside the abandoned house. to protect me from someone? to perform yet another federal test of character, test of reactions on me?

my friend thinks he spoke so loudly outside the empty house and did the gun and badge thing because there was someone lurking in that house from whom I needed protection right that minute. it’s an idea I’ve never had myself, and yet it’s as likely as anything else. and it’s certainly true that I never get told, in an above-board and human-being sort of way, when someone who means me harm is very close to me. I get told by such dramatic stunts on the parts of the agent, I get told by frantic and lunatic code, by drama and stunts, and when the stuff around my person gets thicker and crazier and more extreme, then I know.

like the time so long ago now when matthew came power-walking down main street wearing a very thick winter parka (code) on a very hot and humid june day in 2008, in order to get between me and someone very near. it’s rare to see matthew, or any of them, move with that kind of speed. when they do that, when they add speed or a gun or a badge to their usual code and drama, I know it’s a very bad day.



read…   why did I go…   the matthew… 

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why do I live among these trolls?

sunday 27 feb 2011  tricky turners falls   (new post)

On my way to this blog just now, I saw a quote by the, apparently, very troubled Charlie Sheen. Here’s said quote:  “My motto now is you either love or hate and you must do so violently.”  I agree with this statement in its basic principle, but not in its every detail (just because Sheen seems to be flipping out at the moment, doesn’t mean that the intelligent man he used to be isn’t in there somewhere).  But I would alter the sentence to read: You love in some places, you hate in others, but you ought to do both with passion. And this belief actually has something to do with what I was planning to write about before I saw Mr. Sheen’s quote. At least tangentially.

Why do I live in this town among these despised trolls?  I’ve been asked this question, in various words, several times over the eleven months I’ve been living back in Turners again. All of the people, but one, who’ve asked it have done so in a snide way, the message being: You hate us so much, get the hell out of here. We hate you too. I have some readers, you see, among the Turners denizens, and they take great umbrage at what I say about them in my writing. My responses? 1.  Deal with it, shmuck. I’m telling real things about the way I’ve been treated by real Turners-ites over 25 real years. You can’t handle having your own disgusting behavior written about on the internet and tossed back into your face, well tough. 2. Show me you’re better than you’ve presented yourselves to me in the past. Apologize, for starters. After you do that, treat me well. What’s that old saw?… when hell freezes over.

The one person who asked me the question without being snide, did so on the library steps back in the summer. He was a man I’d never met before, but he’s lived in this town for decades. He looked at me with intense scrutiny and asked me how I was doing. I told him not very well. He said “This can be a hard town.” I told him that it has been for me. He wanted to know the name of the woman who had evicted me, and I told him. He said he and his wife don’t do any business with her, and I said I was glad of that.  And then he said “So why…” and he hesitated. I finished it for him: So why am I living here again? Yeah, he said. And I told him.

After our conversation he told me to take care. I haven’t seen him since, but I know he’s still around because he’s a long-term townie. He just happens to be one I never met before. And since we’d never met in any formal way, I can only conclude that he must have known things about me from my blogs, or from town gossip about my blogs.

In several posts scattered around my many blogs, I’ve written at least a sentence or two about why I came back to this crucible. Now I seem to have decided that the subject needs a post of its own.

I came back here because it was here that my animals were stolen from me and hidden from me in various other towns, where they were eventually killed. I came back to the scene of the crime, so to speak, to the scene of the worst trauma of my life, because I’m not capable of being anywhere else. I have a good friend out in the county where I spent the first 32 years of my life, and part of me longs to go back there and be near her. That same part of me misses the ocean more than I can say. And theoretically, I could go back. In a couple of months, having served my sentence in the ponystall, I will presumably be given movable rent subsidy that I can use anywhere in the state. I think about going back. I think about it a lot.

Every time I consider it, I know that I can’t, in spite of the very strong internal forces that want to pull me there. I can’t leave the scene of the crime. My heart’s not ready. It may never be ready. And before that crime was committed nearly three years ago, this town was the scene of the years and days and minutes and hours spent with my animals, spent as myself, to the extent that the landlords and fellow tenants of this burg let me be myself.

I need to be able to walk the river or the canal any hour of the day or night… and remember. I need to walk by the buildings that were once our homes any time the yearning comes… to remember. I feel closer to the stolen animals here, and to the person I was and the way of life I had before the crime. I cannot go.

It would be different if I had a car. Then I could live in Deerfield or Greenfield or Leverett, and come here to the places of my memories any hour I needed to. But lacking said car, leaving this town cuts me off from walks at five in the morning, or ten at night, or any other time when the grief is weighing a ton and that longing strikes.

The fact that I despise these trolls passionately is one of the reasons I experience misery here in this armpit. But the fact that I loved and love those animals, and every minute I had with them, with, as the cliché goes, every fiber of my being, is the reason I cannot leave. Love with passion, hate with passion. If someone deserves your contempt, if that’s what they have earned, then they deserve it one hundred percent. If an animal has engendered my love, then they deserve that love one hundred percent. My own belief.

I hope that I’ve cleared up the question for anyone who may have it, as to why I came back here to poison.


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yuletide yuppification

Page Seventy

Wednesday 1 December 2010

Oh-so-tasteful (whose taste) in Turners….   (and yet another interruption in the copying of older posts)

Ich sehne nach die alte Beleuchtung.

So it’s very, very early in the morning of the first day of December. Everywhere around Massachusetts, over at least two decades, the conformity and uniformity of design dictated by the gentry who pay for the gentrification of each and every little town, has turned the towns into little replicas of each other and eliminated to a great degree their individuality.

I will say for Turners that it held out against this trend, at least on the question of Christmas lights, for a long time. I believe that in 2003, there was still the traditional Turners lighting. Maybe even 2004.

But at last the purveyors of conformity and ennui won out. We are reduced now to one short string of white lights on only the tops of certain light poles down Avenue A. Sometimes every third pole, sometimes every fourth. We are reduced to an upper-middle-class cliché.

And what did there used to be, from the time I came here in 1985 until six or seven years ago? There used to be this: The central section of Avenue A is lined with trees on either side. Crabapples, maples, oaks, and even a couple of ginsengs. It’s quite lovely when the crabapples are blooming in early spring. At Yuletide, however, these trees were festooned, and I mean festooned in the most positive and cheerful sense of that word, with COLORED lights. And please don’t picture a strand of multi-colored lights on each tree. That would be to imagine entirely the wrong effect. No, each tree had single-colored strings of lights, so that one tree would be yellow, the one beside it red, the next one blue, etc. And when you stood at either end of the decorated section of the avenue, the effect was like bursts of fireworks, all in a long row, and each burst sprayed out its own particular color. It was like a winter carnival; it was warm and inviting and festive (the only thing I ever knew about Turners that was warm and inviting). It was a Christmas revel for every single citizen to enjoy: rich, poor and in between. And kids LOVED it, including my own. Even when she was a teenager, she loved those lights on Avenue A.



What have we got now? Boring. Cold. Dictated by big-pocket buyers of property and influencers of the select board. Nothing warm, or inviting, or festive, or individual. Christmas on Avenue A is now as much of a visual drag as it is in many other towns that have fallen under the boot of the controlling yuppies.

POSTSCRIPT:   ……  Well now it’s nearly 12 hours since I wrote this post. Just popped over to the bakery for something really fattening, and what do I see at the restaurant right before the bridge? MANY COLORFUL LIGHTS. On the shrubbery, around the edges of the roof. And yes I got a lump in my throat to see a carnival of color on Avenue A again, even if it’s a very small piece of Avenue A.

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He says that no one says…

Friday 28 May 2010      Greenfield, escaping Turners power outage

Another interruption. Another new Sehnen post while I’m still in the process of copying the old ones here.

A conversation recently with someone, in which we were discussing some things that had been said to me in March by a guy named Rick W. One of those things Rick W. had said about himself was this: “I don’t know anyone who thinks Rick W.’s an asshole.” (his emphasis). Well, the third party that I was talking to said that Rick W. was clearly very messed up and that I should write a blog post containing this unequivocal statement:

                                 Rick W. is indeed an asshole

So there it is. Blog post with direct statement. I myself would have called Rick W. extremely immature for a man of 60, lacking in integrity, a dweller in a dreamworld, somewhat underhanded…  But asshole is Rick W.’s own word, so that’s what I’ve used.

Living in Greenfield again, very briefly, since yesterday afternoon. Power went out 11:17 Wed night. Third floor tiny space with only one window, no power to run fans. Fridge defrosting and food spoiling. Only have a microwave to cook with, and it won’t work. Can’t charge the cell phone. Grocery store closed down for lack of power, and no money to eat in restaurants, which were closed anyway for lack of power. Hot, hungry, asthma breathing, no radio to listen to, etc. And it was so great of the building manager to come around yesterday and see if the tenants were okay, if any tenants needed anything. Yeah, right. I’m sure all she gave a damn about was that she had a day off from work. And of course Matthew Lacoy, who loves me, was right there at my door with a nice meal he’d got me in Greenfield.

Yeah, right. But now that I’m in Greenfield he’s dogging my footsteps in his usual undercover, amoral, unloving, egomaniacal fashion. May the ocean’s dogs devour both him and all his colleagues.

Back to the power. Turners Falls is partially owned by guess who: Northeast Utilities. They own the riverbank because they have a hydroeleltric dam there. They own the canal banks and the canal because they have a hydroelectric plant there. There are patches of Turners that are filled with high-tension wires, and big ugly junction boxes pop up here and pop up there. And yet we can’t have electricity since 11:17 Wednesday night. Go figure.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~  website  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

(sock monkey at


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they’re gone


sehnen posted on May 05, 2008 | views: 69 | Tags: failingx

still, still monday 5 may 2008…     turners fails

It’s a failure Mommy who can’t protect her children. It’s an incompetent Mommy who has such a raging immune system that she can’t work and buy a house in which to keep her family safe. It’s a stupid Mommy who trusts the wrong people. It’s a chicken Mommy who is so afraid of things that other people do all the time, that she couldn’t be tougher against the world of humans and maybe save her family. Whatever else I am, and I am some very good things, in my own opinion, I am also a failure, and incompetent, and stupid about people, and a person with a whole lot of fears about other people.                                                                          


Update 30 May 2009: Oh, they’re gone. It hurts so much, I can’t desribe it. My failure to be able to make it with people. My failure to be able to butter up the landlady, even after her erratic emotions and prodigious lies had come to frighten me. My failure to get the idea of pills: maybe the pills I’m taking now would have helped me bear up better in an emotionally charged situation. I really fall apart in situations like that. My failure to hang on to the letter of complaint I wrote about the mafia-chick, instead of taking it to the landlady. If I’d done any of these things differently, there might not have been an eviction, and I might still be living with my family now. But on the other side, if the landlady disliked me so much, why couldn’t she just have ignored me and collected my rent? No, she had to be so vicious as to destroy me. People who choose viciousness and cruelty always could make a different choice. They choose aggression because they enjoy it, it gives them a feeling of power. And if there’s one thing my ex-landlady loves, it’s power.


(r.monti sculpture at


read…   Extempoaneana…  Kaikenlainen


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back again

Page Twenty-one                (copy)

sehnen posted on May 05, 2008 | views: 65 | Tags: turn againx

still monday, 5 may 2008, turners falls                                                                                   

Back in Turners Falls, for almost two hours now. Turners Falls — setting for the psychotic landlady and the equally psychotic mob-tenant, the sheriff, the shame, the animals vanishing out of some priest’s garage (that garage is very near the building I’m in at this moment), the end of my love and the end of my way of life. Anything that I define as my life, anyway. This homeless, street-walking, loveless, aimless bum existence that I’ve carried on since March 12 has nothing to do with how I lived and who I was.

But a whole lot of other things happened here in Turners Falls too. Twenty-two years of my fifty-five happened here. My child lived here from age six to age twenty. Most of my animals were born here, and just about all of those who died, died here. Everything we did together in twenty-twoyears happened here. The years of canal walks with the cats. The years of river walks with the dogs. The woods walks with cats in one woods and dogs years later in another. The moonshadows. The moose. The beavers. The possum we raised. The grey domestic goose who decided to go wild and live in the river. Don’t know where she came from, but she was friends with many in this town, including me and my dogs. It all happened here.

It was here that I lived when my uncles died, and my grandmothers, and my father. It was a cop from this town who came to the door the morning after my nineteen-year-old nephew was killed in Iraq. It was in this town that I had a housemate who died seven and a half weeks after we moved in. It was here that I lost everything I loved and everything I was.

Update 29 May 2009:  And how do I feel about Turners Falls now, now that the denial and hope are gone? Now that certain people who know what became of my animals still keep quiet? I see it as an even more noxious place than I thought it before, full of people who didn’t give a damn about me. And now they have added the label of delusional to other things they’ve called me over the years, because of the situation undercover man Lacoy told me about. It is still the town where I spent twenty-two years with wonderful animals, and did wonderful things with them. That is what gives me a bond to Turners Falls. But in terms of its humans, it is a barren, toxic wasteland for me.


read…  Spite and malice…   All my stars

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what is love?

Page Fourteen                  (copying away)

sehnen posted on Apr 28, 2008 | views: 164 | Tags: all for lovex

Mon 28 april 2008    greenfield

Number 18                (Tuuschi’s poem)

The ringer of bells,
the happy boy,                                                                                                                              
the lover of love itself.
I was flummoxed always,
baffled always,
that a soul so enormous,
a will to love so huge,
could fit inside
your little ounces of
feathers, flesh and bone.
You’re the sun,
the rushing waterfall.
You’re everything that shines
and effervesces.
And you’re gone.                          

(here to more tuuschi)

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So what is love? Different things to different people, I’m sure. And what do you do for love? Again, different things to different people. Here’s something that I did for love for thirteen years: I watched my epileptic dog and cat have grand mal seizures, and after the first few times, I learned, for their sakes, to pretend I was perfectly calm. But the Department of Mental Abuse in greenfield never asked me about things like that. They apparently decided I’m just a wing-nut animal-hoarder and set out to rid me of my animals. Presto, the problem’s gone.

So here’s the dog, epileptic since he was five years old in 2002. The dog weighs about 80 lbs, and in an animal that size, a grand mal seizure is a grand event. Pee, sometimes poop, lots of thick saliva, thrashing and snarling and odd sounds coming out of the throat. And as many seizures as I’ve seen over thirteen years, I have never lost my terror: this animal is going to die. Right here, right now, in my arms. And it’s not true that they’re going to die, it’s just a loving friend’s irrational fear. But I’ve never lost it. So for love I learned to kneel down beside the thrashing, snarling, 80 pounds of electrical misfiring, and gently stroke his side, and tell him everything’s going to be ok, and swallow my terror while my heart pounded, and tell him mommy’s right here, and you’ll be better soon. And then when he begins to come out of it, he wants to get up, but you know from experience that he can’t walk yet. So you gently push him back down 3, 4, 5 times and keep stroking him, till you know he’s come out of it enough to walk (as a novice I let him get up too soon, and he staggered and fell like a drunk, and things got broken). Then you wash the thick saliva from his muzzle, and he looks at the pee on the floor and then looks guilty, because he knows he’s supposed to pee outside, and he’s a good dog. And you tell him it’s ok, he couldn’t help it, he was sick. You clean the pee, you clean him. He’s hungry and thirsty after a seizure, so you give him what he needs. And often these things seem to happen in the middle of the night. All sound asleep, and suddenly he’s thrashing and moaning beside you. You wake up in a flash, swallow your fear, and be what he needs you to be.

One of the things I did for love of Mishi for almost six years. And before that, the cat. And I would do it a hundred times again, if I could have him back in my arms this minute. But the DMH took care of that, didn’t they. Keep whatever and whomever you love away from the DMH. I’m sure Mishi’s been killed as unadoptible: eleven years old and epileptic. Give me a jeweled dagger in my hand/ to avenge him.


read…   Mental hell…    Braonwandering...

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homepage two

Page Eleven                  (copying from soulcast)

sehnen posted on Apr 22, 2008 | views: 212 | Tags: turners fallsx

still tuesday 22nd…  2008

Back in Turners Falls. That nice-sounding name. A few minutes ago I walked right past the wife of the locksmith who came on March 11th to change the locks on my apartment after the sheriff evicted us. She puts her head down when she sees me now. For years she was always friendly to me. I hope she’s bloody too ashamed to look at me. She and her husband the locksmith are hardly poor. He could have refused to take that job. I hope she damned well drowns in her shame.

Update 19 May 2009: That librarian I talked about when I first made this post later started  talking to me again, during October and November 2008 when I lived in the park in the center of Turners Falls. Yes, I lived in the park and camped out in the band shell. You’ll make your own decision, but remember that I lived in Turners for 22 years. My experience of that town tells me that there’s just about no way at all that the police and selectmen of Turners would have let me or anyone else live so visibly in a park right smack in the center of town unless someone was telling them to leave me there. I try and try to find another reason they would allow such a thing, and why they would even have a cop come in the night a couple of times to see if I were warm enough. I can’t find solid reasons for these things. I have never been a buddy of police and selectmen. I haven’t been their enemy, as far as I know, but I haven’t been someone they felt a bond with either. So why was this allowed?   
Now it’s spring. St. Francis has his animals, but I do not have mine. I’ve always liked Franky because of his animals. He lives, apparently, at
read…   Spite and malice…   Poison and snowflake trees      
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