President Trump: “I know parents who don’t love their children.” Reply: “I know parents who love their children but are alienated by federally funded judges.”

The above video, entitled “Parents Under Siege” is the first of a series used to promote our Parent March on Washington, subtitled: The Lawyer Epidemic.

By Dr. Leon Koziol

Parenting Rights Institute

At a campaign rally in North Carolina on Monday, President Trump twice told a crowd of supporters that he “knows many parents who don’t love their children very much,” see Haberman & Baker, At Rally, Trump Takes Aim at Democrats Amid Reshuffling of Primary Field, NY Times, March 3, 2020 edition, pg. A-17.

It was a statement I heard myself, and it remains unclear what was meant by it or why it was said. However, it should inspire parents victimized by our divorce and family courts to rally against a funding scheme that rewards these courts by the number of parents they can alienate from their children.

That shocking truth has been suppressed for decades due to the lucrative benefits that Title IV-D of the Social Security Act brings to lawyers, service providers and family judges. It is the truth behind a percentage of parents who seemingly “don’t love their children,” but are prevented from doing so by this funding scheme.

Lawyers “who don’t love ethics very much” may know little about how this funding scheme harms clients. But they do know from early financial statements in any divorce or support proceeding how much is available to pay for their fees. Once a parent is sucked into this court system, it’s a downward spiral. Lawyers incite needless conflict to keep the money flowing.

These are not genuine lawyers. They’re licensed con-artists preying on your emotions. They could care less about your children, mine or even their own given the precedent they set in these courts. Then, in an ultimate hypocrisy, they continue to maintain that they are bankrupting entire families and raiding college funds for “the best interests of our children.”

The judges (more accurately lawyers on the bench) are equally at fault in this custody gold mine. Financial incentives make them biased. They overlook and even promote the legalized robberies and kidnapping of parent-child relationships because they are rewarded by federal funds (Title IV-D performance grants) based on the number of “custodial parents” they can create.

Such funds are diminished whenever two parents can get along and need no “custody” titles. They need no government interference or supervision. This is why shared parenting laws are opposed by special interests and bar associations (so-called “professional” service providers who feed off the custody gold mine). That is also why mediation and settlement are also thwarted.

This category of moms and dads love their children beyond imagination. They will fight to the end to protect them, and that is exactly what these lawyers “love” to hear in consultations. They are there to test parents on how much money and assets they are willing to part with for the “best interests” of their children.

After 20 years as a proven attorney another 10 years as a victim, I have seen the carnage time and again. It’s all about the money. “Best interests” propaganda detracts from an epidemic no differently than tobacco, drug and food advertisements do. The child industry is now a humanitarian crisis with daily suicides, financial ruin and premature deaths. The difference here is that it’s being suppressed by the courts which profit from it.

Our federal courts may be more to blame. They were created for the very purpose of protecting our federal rights. But a look at the record shows the judges there abandoning their duties (despite life terms) to protect their state court colleagues instead. Any whistle blower lawyer or victimized parent who seeks reform and justice is targeted and destroyed no differently than the regimes our military is sent overseas to fight.

None of this will change until we parents make a profound public statement in Washington. A rare opportunity to do so now awaits you on May 27-29, 2020 when the Parenting Rights Institute will sponsor its Annual Parent March and Conference. We begin with an orientation session will occur at the Congressional Ballroom of the Holiday Inn Capitol at 7 pm on May 27.

At that session we will be preparing for our lobby day in Congress the next day. At 7 pm on May 28, 2020, we will sponsor expert speakers at the same location. This is a ticketed event. At Noon on Friday, May 29, 2020, we will assemble at Lafayette Square Park at the White House to begin our march under police escort down Pennsylvania Avenue to the Supreme Court.

Each Thursday at 7pm EST we are hosting nationwide conference calls to grow numbers for this event. These calls are not designed for war stories, therapy, legal advice or fringe ideas. We know what we are doing and will not tolerate moles and trolls who contaminate such efforts because they benefit from the system. This is a proven event for the sake of all victims.

If you would like to be a part of these calls or our 3-day event, call our office at (315) 380-3420 or e-mail me directly at leonkoziol@gmail.com.

President Trump has been kept in the dark on this “judicial swamp” and may be our only hope to clean up the corruption. But like former Judiciary Chairman, Senator Chuck Grassley stated at a recent Whistle blower Conference, “You can’t fix something if you don’t know its broken, that’s just common sense.” Let us now bring “common sense” to Washington.

 

 

 

 

 

While the Politicians were Impeaching…

This 1-second video was taken north of Times Square, not far from Trump Tower on Wednesday, December 18, 2019. It was taken around 6 pm as politicians were wrapping up their day long testimony for a vote on the impeachment of President Donald Trump. 

Curious as to the unique culture surrounding homeless people, I monitored events to learn that the man in red was visiting fellow homeless victims to assure that they had sufficient protection for the night against the single digit snow squalls which I personally fought en route to my hotel. The forecast was a low of 15 overnight.

The guy in red had just delivered some additional cardboard bedding for the man buried under those blankets on the ground. I overheard that guy tell him that he would return to sleep on his other side as soon as he checked on others nearby.

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This photo shows a man buried under blankets beneath the marquis of a worship center in Hell’s Kitchen just west of Times Square. While he was fighting to stay alive on the sidewalks of Congressman Jerry Nadler’s district, Jerry was preoccupied with impeachment as Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee.

By Dr. Leon Koziol

Parenting Rights Institute

It was a cold, bright sunny day on Wednesday, December 18, 2019 as I drove down the New York Thruway on another assignment to uncover court corruption in Manhattan. A one hour traffic jam at the George Washington bridge made me late for my appointment. Six lanes at the New Jersey side toll booths narrowed to a single lane on the bridge due to vast stretches of ice being removed by construction crews on its south span.

I had already spent travel hours listening to testimony of congress members regarding the impeachment of Donald Trump which was approved later in the evening. Initially I was impressed with most of the statements including those with which I disagreed. However, even as a former office holder and trial attorney, I soon found myself anxious to switch my radio dial to something more interesting, like latino music which I do not get upstate.

That’s how predictable the testimony became, such that the traffic jams I so detest were becoming tolerable. The many reserved and yielded time for glory speeches could not be more boorish. If it was a Democrat, Trump was a treasonous villain compared to the likes of Benedict Arnold. And if it was a Republican, “colleagues across the aisle” were history’s most profound hypocrites, the likes of which would make Alexander Hamilton turn over in his grave.

In the end, the lofty presentations turned cold and grey as the weather was becoming as I finally reached midtown. They were entirely connected to party loyalty and not the gravity of events that would further divide our nation. So partisan were these representatives that the process lost its luster. There was no merit or genuine principle behind any of it. Whatever respect I had for this impeachment process, it was tortured by politicians focused on self-advancement.

Congressman Jerry Nadler represents the 10th District of New York. His district is the second smallest in the nation and one of the most gerrymandered ones on the planet. It stretches from Central Park down along a west side strip of Manhattan deep into the heart of Brooklyn. Obviously this district was carved out for Jerry’s re-election prospects and not for any constituent benefit in such diverse, chopped-up neighborhoods.

Jerry was the “gentleman from New York” who dominated the hearing as Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. I must have counted at least four times when he was recognized in a single hour, yielding time to select Democrat colleagues to impress the few outsiders who bothered to hear any of it. I was particularly offended because I visited Nadler’s office with his constituents during the lobby (middle) day of our Parent March on Washington (May 1-3, 2019).

I had been to Washington many times lobbying for court reforms and a federal investigation of Title IV-D funding abuses which are needlessly separating parents legally residing here from their children. Such abuses are causing veteran suicides and aggravated domestic violence, but because of the lucrative nature of this funding scheme in America’s family courts, you will not hear any lofty speeches from these same members of Congress supporting our requests.

Indeed, not a single member or staff in Congress responded to our reports and march down Pennsylvania Avenue under police escort. After a packed meeting in the conference room of Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer in which we were promised a reply, none has materialized even after follow-up visits and calls. This is how obsessed he and other Democrat colleagues have become with the impeachment agenda which began shortly after the 2016 election of Donald Trump.

Meanwhile the people and constituents are literally left “out in the cold” based on the many homeless people in Nadler’s congressional district that were taking cover from deadly cold and snow squalls on the day of impeachment. They could also be found only blocks away from that district at Trump Tower on the other side of Central Park. To hear these epic hypocrites recite their “oaths of office” repeatedly during the same day hearings made me cringe given their violations of those oaths among the sidewalks of Manhattan and the family court victims of America.

Federal Court to Hear Precedent Case Regarding Parental Alienation, Support Abuses and Whistle Blower Retaliation

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Participants of our Parent March on Washington were rewarded with a police escort down Pennsylvania Avenue between the White House and Capitol Building on May 3, 2019. We spent the prior day in the halls of Congress lobbying for a federal investigation of human rights violations and federal funding abuses in our nation’s divorce and family courts.

By Dr. Leon Koziol

Parenting Rights Institute

On November 15, 2019, at 9 a.m., at the United States Courthouse in Albany, New York, a federal judge is scheduled to hear arguments regarding a precedent-seeking case entitled, Leon Koziol, Individually and as Natural Parent vs State of New York, Child Support Processing Center, Acting Family Judge Gerald Popeo, Support Magistrate Natalie Carraway, Chief Court Clerk Barbara Porta, Support Investigator Katie Lawrence, Custodial Parent Kelly Hawse-Koziol and Oneida County Sheriff Robert Maciol.

This case features inhumane retributions which I sustained as a model parent and attorney who blew the whistle on corruption in our divorce and family courts. That corruption is twofold: first the systemic bias among judges rewarded by the number and size of support orders they issue under a federal funding law known as Title IV-D of the Social Security Act, and second, a particular bias ranging from my pedophile custody judge removed from the bench (Bryan Hedges) to a racist, unethical and abusive judge censured by a judicial commission (Gerald Popeo, a defendant here).

It was filed on August 7, 2019 in New York Supreme Court after I was denied court transcripts and evidentiary subpoenas to show a major fraud during a support violation proceeding. My rights of due process, free speech and equal protection were violated incessantly after federal judges in upstate New York referred my complaints to state court over the years. In a shocking irony, the New York Attorney General (representing the state, judges and court clerk) then moved my case from state court back to federal court on August 29, 2019.

Nearly 40 trial level judges have been disqualified or removed from my originally uncontested divorce. Over a period of 12 years, my livelihood, reputation and parent-child relations were utterly destroyed through such concoctions as a “prohibited alcohol related gesture” (a wedding toast) and fabricated college degrees (PhD and Masters) to elevate my support obligations.

It has set new records for unmitigated corruption. For example, ethics lawyers engaged in the witch hunt against me have opposed my reinstatement to practice as long as I continue to blow the whistle. This has been ongoing for a record 10 years. The same lawyers were then allowed to resign without any criminal or ethics charges after being caught falsifying their time sheets.

As observers across the country have warned time and again, if they can do this to a model parent and unblemished attorney (for more than 23 years), imagine what they could do to the rest of us. A sort of Gestapo atmosphere is growing in our family courts to advance a trillion dollar industry. Anyone courageous or conscientious enough to stand in the way of this gold mine will be squashed, immediately or over time.

The greed and corruption are so rampant that I was subjected to a “shoot on site” threat arising from an unlawful support warrant one year ago. That warrant was issued by Defendant Judge Gerald Popeo who accepted an assignment to my support case six months after complaining of my supposed participation in a “witch hunt” that led to his  public censure by a judicial commission. Defendant Sheriff Robert Maciol admitted during a radio program that this high alert warrant was unlawfully leaked to the media. Read more details by clicking on to the link below:

(Koziol Complaint Dated August 7, 2019)

This is a watershed case seeking to declare excessive enforcement practices unconstitutional, to establish parental alienation as a constitutional violation, and to secure legal protection for judicial whistle blowers. Bradley Birkenfeld recovered $104 million in an IRS whistle blower case after serving a 30 month prison term in retaliation for his exposure of a Swiss Bank scandal involving billions of dollars in federal revenue losses. I am seeking to set precedent here for those parents sent to debtor prisons and punished for protecting their children. Over time, it could result in billions of dollars in federal tax savings.

Precedent cases in recent years have proven me correct in my long held positions while paving the way for justice to finally occur. These include unanimous Supreme Court decisions in Exxon Mobile v Saudi Industries, 544 US 280 (2005); Marshall v Marshall, 547 US 293 (2006), Sprint v Jacobs, 571 US 69 (2013) and Rippo v Baker, 580 US __ (2017)(per curiam). They are reversing a 50 year trend by lower federal judges of denying family court victims their rightful access to our federal courts whose paramount purpose is to preserve our most basic federal rights.

This year alone, in the case of Timbs v Indiana, 580 US ___ (2/20/19), the Supreme Court declared that excessive fines and asset confiscations violated the Eighth Amendment. Although applied in the criminal context, parallels can be made to the civil case abuses which lead to needless bankruptcies, parent-child separations and premature deaths. Throughout my highly isolated crusade, I have exposed excessive court orders which, like the seizures in Timbs, benefited the state and third parties more than they did the “best interests” of any parent, child or family.

Only weeks ago, a federal appeals court issued a “Precedential” decision in Surender Malhan v Secretary U.S. Department, et. al., 18-3373 (3rd Cir. September 18, 2019). Citing two of the cases listed above, the court reversed a lower federal ruling which had dismissed a father’s civil rights case seeking to curb excessive support enforcement practices. It rejected Rooker-Feldman and Younger Abstention practices which deferred federal claims to pending or completed proceedings in state court. The case was remanded back to the lower federal court. That means it is unlikely to reach the Supreme Court any time soon.

Court arguments will begin and conclude on my case in the morning of November 15, 2019 and are open to the public. It took a horrific sacrifice to make this happen for the benefit of court victims everywhere. Spread the word, attend the hearing, and donate to this site to cover our vast litigation costs. For more information, contact our PRI office at (315) 380-3420 or e-mail me personally at leonkoziol@parentingrightsinstitute.com.

 

More Good News: The Parent March on Washington will become a documentary

 

By Dr. Leon Koziol

Parenting Rights Institute

In only a matter of weeks, the vision of a powerful reform statement in our nation’s capital is becoming reality. Promoted as the Parent March on Washington, now there is more incentive for victimized parents to join us. All the divorce and family court ordeals presented at the speakers events will be consolidated into a video documentary. When completed at a later date, it will be published everywhere and submitted to all members of Congress.

This is a crucial development because your stories will now be “eternalized” as the producer described it. Collectively they will become a powerful statement lasting well beyond our three-day event. This documentary is being financed by a Philadelphia lawyer (and former judge candidate) based on his reading of our recent report “Federal Funded Epidemic” and the videos published on this site, http://www.leonkoziol.com.

Only the ordeals of those who come to this March will be included. There are two speaking events for this purpose. On May 2, 2019 at 7 pm, in the Congressional Ballroom of the Holiday Inn Capitol, 550 C Street, SW, we are featuring expert speakers in law, politics, education and psychology. By coming here, you will obtain valuable information to apply to your cases. Extraordinary ordeals will also be featured where time allows. There is no charge for this event.

The second speaking event is the one on May 3, 2019 at the end of our March across from the Supreme Court (Area 10). This is where anyone can offer their stories of corruption, parent alienation and other human rights violations occurring in these courts. A microphone and sound system will facilitate this at approximately 3 pm (depending on the time of the March which begins at the White House at 1 pm). We are inviting mainstream and social media to both events.

To maximize our success on behalf of victimized parents everywhere, we need you to share, promote and support this event. We also need you to make and solicit donations on this site. This event is costly and we rely on your financial assistance. It’s time to shift the focus from illegal immigrants at our borders to American parents separated from their children here at home. Join our nationwide conference calls beginning dasily on Monday, April 20, 2019 at 7 pm EST. Call (605) 313-4165, enter access code 763491 when prompted.

Featured below are excerpts from speakers near the same location at a news conference in 2016. It begins with Dr. Mario Jimenez of Miami, Florida. The purpose was to draw attention to a case which I had docketed the same day at the United States Supreme Court (in the background). Now, an economics professor from a prominent university has a case which will be reviewed by the Justices here only days after our March ends. He will be speaking at both events.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Report to Congress for our Parent March Lobby Day is Now Available and a Subject of Tonight’s Conference Call

 

 

REMINDER: Our next nationwide conference call regarding the Parent March on Washington is tonight, and every Thursday (and Monday nights) at 7 pm EST. Call  the same number and code being used all along: Call (605) 313-4165, then enter access code 763491.

Dr. Leon Koziol

Parenting Rights Institute

A 24-page report has been completed and will be the main component of our lobby packet to Congress and Justice Department on Lobby Day, May 2, 2019. That’s the middle day of our 3-day Parent March on Washington. Click here for itinerary and purpose.

This report details how federal funds are being abused by divorce and family courts to cause parental alienation and human rights violations. It contains highly valuable information based on my 23 years as a practicing attorney in these courts, 12 years as an abused parent, and 10 years as a whistleblower victim.

A federal investigation, congressional oversight hearing, Shared Parenting Law and Judicial Whistleblower Protection Act are among the recommendations being made. It is now available at no cost by e-mailing me at leonkoziol@gmail.com or viewing it here. That link will soon be provided.

This report should be used to request meetings on Lobby Day with your representatives and contacts in Washington. Here is an opening excerpt:

A FEDERAL FUNDED EPIDEMIC

Vital Report Justifying a Federal Investigation of Human Rights Abuses in Divorce and Family Courts

While our federal government struggles with illegal parents separated from their children at our borders, American parents are being separated daily and without accountability in family courts across our country. Under federal law, a “custodial parent” is mandated for states to qualify for billions of dollars in performance grants, Dept of Family v DHHS, 588 F.3d 740 (1st Cir. 2009). This, in turn, undermines shared parenting laws and cooperation, i.e. Bast v Rossoff, 91 NY2d 723 (1998)(attorney parents’ agreement struck down for failure to name a “custodial parent”).

Under Title IV-D of the Social Security Act, 42 USC Section 658(a), state courts earn vast amounts of revenues from our federal government through performance grants based on the number and size of child support orders issued and satisfied. Not only does this create an inherent and systemic bias among ostensibly impartial jurists, it incites needless conflict between parents forced into an oppositional framework for deciding custody, support and other disputes.

Originally intended to recoup aid to needy families from absentee fathers, Title IV-D was later expanded to encompass all “non-custodial parents,” good and bad. By lumping them together, federal funding was thereby increased exponentially. Such a performance-based program proved highly ineffective on common sense grounds alone. Parents who love their children will use their God-given liberties to advance the interests of their offspring. Instead, natural human incentives are countermanded and replaced by a rigid control structure for money generating purposes.

Federal money thrown at divorce and family courts in this way has become the proverbial gas thrown on a fire. As veteran family judges have observed, this oppositional framework leads to a winner-take-all contest that draws the worst from parents at a time when children need their best. One example is the case of Webster v Ryan, 729 NYS2d 315 (Fam. Ct. 2001) at fn 1, where “parenting time” was preferred over “custody” and “visitation” due to a system which has “outlived its usefulness.” Such terms are more appropriate for prisons and funerals, but their use here causes judges to treat parents as criminals and objects of exploitation for federal funds.

Title IV-D protects this antiquated “custody” framework derived from a day when moms were caretakers and dads were the breadwinners. From that outdated framework, an epidemic has emerged which is producing escalating harm to government, families and society as a whole. It is a silent epidemic suppressed by special interests and bar associations which benefit from custody and support battles. Federal funds have induced states to seize parental authority beyond the rational limits of the judges and lawyers they license to regulate family relationships.

The separation here is not the simple product of divorcing or separated parents. It is an insidious form of separation, far worse than the kind experienced by immigrants, because children are being programmed to ignore, even hate their parents, for the principal purpose of generating lawyer profits and court revenues. Worse yet, it is done every day without so much as a pause from federal lawmakers who, knowingly or not, funded the parent-child separations. The end result is a panoply of societal ills that have elevated government programs and taxpayer burdens.

This insidious form of separation has become understood as “Parental Alienation.” That term derives from the work of Dr. Richard Gardner, an American child psychologist who produced books and studies to show a condition known as Parent Alienation Syndrome or PAS. This condition emerged from custody and support wars featuring one or both parents abusing our courts for reasons other than the “best interests of children.” By removing the “non-custodial parent” from children’s lives, the alienator and courts guarantee a support and revenue stream.

It has become a pay-to-parent scandal, a tax on children, where parent alienation is not so much a condition as it is a symptom. It can be compared to tobacco companies which denied the harmful effects of smoking for decades to resist protective laws. Here, one entity to target is the highly automated Child Support Collection Center in Albany, New York. It has a single confidential office which rakes in billions of dollars in aid and support interest with little accountability.

Click here to read: (Full Report)

Please help fund the Parent March on Washington

 

Extraordinary Book Exposes Court Corruption to Elicit Federal Inquiry

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Unwinding with a Very Special Court  Victim During a Book Project

Dr. Leon R. Koziol

I’ve met a lot of wonderful people during my crusade to reform America’s divorce industry. They include victims from Manhattan to California and even Paris, France.

Many will appear in my new book to be published very soon. Started in 2014, it is intended to elicit hearings and a congressional inquiry into Title IV-D funding abuses and court corruption. I will be promoting it to a global market.

There has never been a literary work like this. The complete opening chapter will be released on this site as a gift to dads on Fathers’ Day. It is sure to inspire all parents.

This was a herculean task. Reform is suppressed because victims do not want to protest or revisit war stories. Alec Baldwin is one example of a crusader who abandoned our cause long ago.

As an accomplished trial attorney and model parent, I have been at this reform effort for over ten years. Nothing on the horizon promises hope even for future generations.

I have now responded with a book that will attract wide readership and hopefully a mainstream documentary like the 60 Minutes one that featured my work years ago.

It is what the current epidemic requires. I have done this through real life adventures, an extraordinary mix of romance, humor and education that will entertain even those who never divorced or had children.

 So even if you are turned off by court stories, you may find my two-part work, Corruption and Carnage, the equivalent of a modern Iliad and Odyssey of the divorce industry.

You be the judge. The following excerpt comes from a chapter entitled “Shark Attack.” A complete, uncensored manuscript can be purchased here prior to publication.

 Please share this message for the sake of our rights.

 

Our story picks up on the French Riviera at pages 82 thru 86:

 Fortunately, Karen saved us from whatever catastrophe might be awaiting. “He’s here,” she announced quietly from Terri’s left side with a sense of urgency. “Let’s ditch these losers so he doesn’t think we’re with them.” Seated on her other side, I could overhear the peculiar exchange.

“You sure? Mare’s a bit toasted, and I don’t trust that guy who keeps staring at her.”

“He’s staring at you, idiot. We can all see that. Besides, they’re big girls. They can join us later at the hotel. There’s gotta be something going on at the lounge. Come on, they’re playing these guys like we were at the other bar. I already told Kate our exit strategy, and she’s good with it.”

The private exchange apparently led Terri to conclude that a better opportunity would not last long because she whispered something in Karen’s ear while reaching again for my hand under the table. Then she rose and rushed for the door with me in tow as if a blow-out sale had just been advertised. Once outside, she let go and raced down the street.

 “Where you going?” I yelled in my confused state on the walkway. “And what’s going on?”

 “That’s for you to find out, Lee, if you’re man enough anyway. I’m getting my car. Follow me!”

For all I knew Terri was using me. Maybe there was some jealous guy she was setting me up to confront for ego purposes. I had seen that adolescent routine many times back home. Or maybe the girls were genuinely being stalked by their earlier suitors.

Whatever the explanation, this was no idle challenge. I couldn’t just ignore it especially with the way she concluded with that sexy giggle. I didn’t bother to think this out. Time was of the essence, so I quickly revved up Linda Lovelace and gave chase.

At first, she was nowhere in sight. Then, from a side street, a shiny red Porsche pulled out in front of me and sped down the city streets. Terri’s scream out the window was as recognizable as the rest of her when she spotted me on the bike.

It turned into a chase scene as the streets gave way to open highway, a winding route familiar to me only because of my earlier drive here. And that was during the daytime. Now my cycle skills on every sharp curve or blind descent would be tested to their limits. Suddenly I felt like I was back in Mexico as the midnight rider.

This was obviously not just any man-challenge. I was keeping pace with a woman suddenly turned wild who was testing how far I would risk my life to make her mine. I thought about my fugitive predicament but by now there was no turning back. I was far too committed.

There was still a lurking thought that she was making a permanent getaway. But with every mile I conquered, it was looking more like an adventure of a lifetime whatever the outcome. This Terri woman was acting like Danica Patrick of the Grand Prix in Monaco which was now just up the highway. She shot through a tunnel headed toward Monte Carlo. I enjoyed watching the Grand Prix on television but never expected to become a part of it this way.

We never made it that far. Instead, Terri led me down a winding road toward the seashore. I rounded a bend with a drop-off on my right. The Porsche had come to a standstill in a lookout spot. Before I could pull in behind, its tail lights kicked off and she vanished.

I quickly took note of an access trail to the beach which she obviously intended to have me follow. On the chance our stay might be long, I hid the rental under a distinctive olive tree to mark its location. Cicadas and crickets kept guard.

I looked around and could find her nowhere. So I hiked down the access trail and struck out for the open beach. A strange moon was lighting up every little depression and mound in the coarse sand. The sea was mildly turbulent with silver reflections skipping off its surface. A foreigner in an exotic land, I asked myself what I was doing here.

Presently I stumbled upon a large rock near the shoreline where Terri’s clothes had been thrown into a pile on top like road signage for a porn shop. It was erotically stimulating to say the least. I looked up and down the beach, back toward the dunes and finally out across the sea. She was nowhere to be found.

I called out her name, getting more bewildered as this adventure progressed, now with a concern that Terri might have become the victim of a shark attack. I had seen the documentaries, but this situation was very real and new to me. The only sound I could discern was that of rippling waves at my feet and a vehicle on the precipitous road behind me slowly navigating its way eastward. Then all was curiously silent.

Suddenly I was drawn to a head piercing the surface of the dark water about fifty yards in front of me followed by a blood curdling scream. The first thing that came to mind was something I only imagined from the movies, being swallowed whole by a great white while trying to save a swimmer from one of its mates. I limited those nightmarish rescues to women and children.

Hey, I’m all for male bonding at a sports bar, but shark fights are not a recognized sporting event. Sorry guys, you’re on your own in these situations especially if you’re like those dudes back at Wayne’s Pub. Where were they when you truly needed them? I could have had each one distracting the shark while I rescued this damsel in distress.

Fortunately it was all a prank. Gasping for air, Terri managed to laugh loudly while treading water. “I got you Lee,” she cried out. “And don’t say I didn’t. You really thought I was that college girl in Jaws. I always wanted to do this to someone. I just wish I could’ve gotten a better look at your face when it finally happened.”

She continued to humor herself over the event, ever proud of her achievement on this warm Riviera night. Now I realized what that moon was all about, to put a spotlight on my dumbfounded appearance. I wasn’t sure if I was angered or pleasantly relieved.

“You are the quintessential bastard!” I yelled back. “All this time you were putting me at risk to carry out a sick prank? It wasn’t funny Terri.” There was no immediate response as I thought about it further. “You mean Karen even helped you set me up? I was ready to pry you loose from the fangs of a hungry shark. And how was I supposed to do that anyway?”

“With all your manliness and chivalry,” she hollered in return before slipping beneath the surface. I kept my eyes peeled, spotting her farther out a few moments later.

“With that scare, you won’t find me anywhere near you now.”

“Oh come now, little boy, don’t be a baby,” she teased. “And stop with that ‘quintessential’ bullshit. What are you, some kind of lawyer?”

“Actually, yes, but I like to keep it private so that I can have more friends.”

“Well then what are you standing there for? Get out of those clothes and come on in. If you want friends, I got one for you right here …”

 

Dr. Leon R. Koziol

Parenting Rights Institute

leonkoziol@parentingrightsinstitute.com

(315) 380-3420