Ifound a photo of a bitter old man among my mothers photos yesterday. I couldn’t publish his photo here out of respect of any living relatives to him, but I can tell the story.

These memories goes back to the time when I was growing up. We lived in an apartment building at first floor and besides us there lived an old man (Mr Larsson) that was very bitter and sometimes mean. He yelled at all the kids playing outside and threatened them with his cane, shouting to them from the window.

He wasn’t popular and in fact so impopular that his own growned up son stopped visiting him. Which of course made him even more bitter.

He did enjoy to scare us kids. One time when the light were off in the entrance hall and I rounded the corner, he jumped forward screaming at me – I almost pee’d my pants. I was very afraid of the darkness and that didn’t make it better.

It did have positive side effects – it made me practise my singing. From that day I was afraid of going around that corner in the entrance, so I always were singing loudly, because if something happened to me, the others should hear my singing suddenly stop and wondering why. What an idea! *lol*

As a grown up I’m sure that he just wanted to “be funny” and had no thought of how a little child could react to this scare he performed. He didn’t know how to properly make contact. Maybe his own childhood had been bad? He obviously were unhappy about his life. Maybe he was envious of our lifes?

I remember the most awful smell of him. Ingrained dirt, pee and moist snuff (running from corner of his mouth) mixed to a lovely “hold your breath” kind of smell.

The few times he was nice, he gave me a pear or a little sugarfree dark chocolate. I thanked him politely, but never could eat them because of the smell of something very old and moist snuff. I went around the nearest corner and throwed it away. I can feel the smell even today…

My Mom worked in the home-help service for elderly and didn’t normally go to people so close of her own home, but since every one else always got into quarrel with him and refused to go to him anymore, she did.

It was no picnic. He accused her of stealing his money among other things, luckily she had proof of that she hadn’t. Actually she had paid some minor things for him with her own money! He was difficult to deal with, but he couldn’t walk over her. She got self-confidence and ability to bite off if needed, so he were forced to back off.

There were no wonder that he were smelly, because he never wanted to change clothes. They had to be two persons to get the clothes off him by force and then cook his underwear very carefully to get them clean.

When he ended up ill in hospital in the end, he got no visitors other than my Mom and my two older sisters. They were older than me and both worked in hospital care at that time.

He was alone at the bitter end.

His earlier life and the way it ended, really was so sad – and unnecessary. Why being such a bitter old man when he could have had a much better life than that?

I don’t know what he wanted or expected from life, but he could at least have kept the contact with his son. He could have done the best he could with his situation. Instead he actually did choose to have this miserable alone life.

He was the total opposite of my Mom. Yes, he did have some difficulties in his life, but not even half of what my Mom has suffered and she is still laughing, despite the fact that she now is more ill than he ever was.

We all have a choice to do when it comes to our own lifes. The one that suffer and lose most from a negative attitude is the one that’s keeping that negative attitude.

No one is going to serve you a good life on a silver plate.

YOU are responsible for your own life, to make it worth living. It’s as simple as that. Or hard, you choose!

I won’t end up alone, bitter, with ingrained dirt, pee and moist snuff, regretting that I didn’t live my life the best way I could!


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16 Comments on “Memories of a bitter man”

    Debbie said:

    While I won’t say it is a happy memory it is one you have carried the lesson from! I do agree that our life is what we make of it and it can only be our attitude on how we end it. And some do choose to be just downright ugly about things. Your mother taught you alot by her actions and how she handled the situation. Sad that he died without family. And he must have taught his son very well how to be like him for him to not show up at his own dads deathbed!

    Very good story! Glad you liked my chicken story! It was actually fun to write. I wish I had pictures of then but I couldn’t find any! I know I had one of the baby chicks but not sure where it is!

    With our weather being so cool today I am going to spend a few hours in the backyard digging up the huge mound of english ivy. The neighbor tells us there was a pond under it somewhere! I am captureing the whole thing in pictures to share in a few months when we get it done!

    Lifecruiser: I totally agree with yout here about being taught from the parents. That garden project of yours sounds very interesting, looking forward to hear more about it!

    Ma said:

    Wow! What a memory to have. He must have had a rough life growing up or some other bad memory to make him that way. I’m so glad I had a happy life so in my older years, I’m doing pretty good and I love little ones. My grandchildren and great grandchildren are my pride and joys.

    mine is up too.

    Lifecruiser: I’m so glad for you :-)

    Lazy Daisy said:

    Wow, very powerful story. Reminds me of the quote, “If you can’t be a good example at least you can serve as a horrible warning to others.”

    What a wonderful warm and caring mother you have…no wonder you turned out so well.

    Lifecruiser: Thanks Lazy Daisy. Yes, my mother is pretty amazing and I haev everything to thank her for :-) That’s a very good quote.

    Michele said:

    That was a nice story, it really makes you think, you have to live each day to the fullest and don’t hold a grudge.
    Have a nice day :)
    Mine is up!

    Lifecruiser: Thanks. Yes, it sure does!

    Sandy said:

    Our lives are the choices that we make. I agree that my choice is to be happy not bitter like the man that you described. that was his choice and his choice alone. What a desperate and lonely life he lived and how sad!! I choose to be happy and live a fun and fullfilling life with my friends and family around me…thanks for the nice post today. My monday memories are up today too. Sandy

    Lifecruiser: Yes, it really was so sad – and unnecessary. I’m glad you’re having the opposite :-)

    Happy and Blue 2 said:

    I think every neighborhood has it’s bitter old man or woman.
    It’s sad really. Often they are bitter because no one talks to them. And they are the ones pushing everyone away.
    Anyways, hope you have a great week..

    Lifecruiser: Yes, it seems hard to understand that your own behaviour can have something to do with it…

    mar said:

    Probably your mom is the only one keeping a pic of that bitter old man…sad, isn’t ? I know some people lack “social abilities” but something can always be done about it. Plus a smile doesn’t cost anything.
    Let’s all blog and be merry !!

    Lifecruiser: I really agree, there is always something to do about it. If you want to…. I like that smile and laughter is free – why not use it more often? *s*

    Chi said:

    I think this is so sad…and such a waste of life….he must have truly been a very lonely man.

    Lifecruiser: Yes, he really was. It’s hard to even imagine how tough it really was….

    Laura said:

    Nice to read your story. I always feel sorry for grumpy people.

    Lifecruiser: Yes, that’s the only thing to do: feel sorry for them :-)

    LadyBug Crossing said:

    All memories make us the people that we are.

    Many elderly people are old and crotchety… They are lonely, miserable, people.. Nothing will ever make them happy. They are happiest when they are complaining… (My mom is a geriatric nurse – she’s really good with old people – we always said she was better with them than she ever was with us. It’s a gift…. )

    Thanks for sharing… Crotchety old people need love too… :-)

    Lifecruiser: I agree to that and maybe they actually need more love than others…

    Chana said:

    what a sad life he led. why? we will never know but it makes no sense to me..why would anyone choose to be alone than to be a part of something.

    how wonderful of your mom to be so kind in what she did for him. Bless her heart.

    i’m sure you will Not die alone or sad. your spirit is too alive for that..i’m glad.

    Lifecruiser: Yes, my Mom is wonderful, she still is and I’m glad that she passed a lot of her “good stuff” over to me :-)

    Chelle said:

    It is always sad when people live a bitter life. Life is too short.

    I am happy you choose to live otherwise!

    Lifecruiser: Yes, that’s certainly sure, Life is too short :-)

    Irish Church Lady said:

    Your descriptive words in your story really made it seem so real to us! :shock:

    How sad he chose to live his life that way. :???:

    Lifecruiser: Yes, it was sad and unbelievable.

    Norma said:

    Even memories that aren’t pleasant can teach us some good lessons, as you have shown. Thanks for visiting my MM. I’m off visiting my sister, so it is hard to get around to visit everyone.

    Lifecruiser: Yes, they sure can :-)

    Rose said:

    Each bad experience in life can teach us valuable lessons. My question of the week which no one will participate in lOl :( is this

    Epiphany is defined as “a sudden, powerful, and often spiritual or life-changing realization that a character experiences in an otherwise ordinary moment.” Have you experienced a moment of epiphany when at that very moment your life was altered? If so, tell me about it?

    I think this may be yours! Wonderful post hun!

    Lifecruiser: Thanks Rose. Well, I was over and some participants you’ve got. I’ll try to remember to come back next time :-)

    Bobbi Jo said:

    Wow. I’m almost at a loss of words here. I’m glad you shared this particular memory. Even though it probably wasn’t all that pleasant for you to think about, it came across as very heartfelt and honest. Thanks again for sharing.

    Lifecruiser: Thanks Bobbi Jo. Yes, I can really remember this memory well and the question is strong felt: why did he choose this miserable life? So unbelievable sad and above all unnecessary!

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