Doc Stevens: Learning about the Lord from "Toilet Books."

Friday, November 20, 2009 9:25 AM Posted by Tondeleo Lee Thomas

Tondeleo: Now that I am back at home for the next few months, I will be posting random talks with Doc and Marilyn and their friends, from the digital recordings I made of them. Some of these are more than a year old.

One thing that strikes me about rural Americans is their connection with religion, even if they are not that pious in their personal lifestyles. Doc and Marilyn seem to pretty much live out their beliefs, even though they are not what one would normally think of as the religious type.

Some of their friends are very "rough and ready" but when it comes to "the things of the Lord," they seem to have some respect for spirituality. A man might be out in a bar every Friday and Saturday night, and even get into fights. But, on Sunday it is likely that he could be in church. If one brings up "the Lord," he will suddenly have some level of respect and reverence.

I asked Doc about this, and how it is that he learns about religion.

Doc Stevens 09Doc: I got one of them toilet books. Marilyn brung it home from church. You set it on the back of your toilet and when you're sittin' on the toilet, you read the page for that day and learn about the Lord and then pray the prayer at the bottom. Sometimes I'm in there long enough to read two or three days worth. It ain't that hard to learn about the Lord, if you got your mind to it.

I ain't too big on prayin' when I'm on the toilet 'cause it ain't respectful to the Lord. But I read about Him there. After I'm done my business, and got my britches back up, that's when I talk to him mostly.

You can talk to God anywhere, Tondy. If I aint got nothing to tell him, I tell him that I am glad I ain't sick, or aint homeless. Glad I got people what loves me and what I love. And I hank him for that.

I ask him what to do. Then I set about doing it. If I get stuck when workin' on a car, I ask him how to fix it an' he usually tells me what to try next and' it works.

Tondeleo: So how does God talk to you, Doc? Is it in a voice like me talking to you, or is it just in your head or what?

Doc: God don't talk to your head, Tondy. He talks to your heart. People what only lives in their heads and brains get anti God after a while. They lose touch with their hearts. Lose they selves. An' they are some of the most miserable people you will ever meet.

But people what lives from their heart is happier. I'm happier. I been both sides of that street. It is better for a man to walk with his God.

Me, I had a lot of bad things happen when I was growin' up. A lot of drinkin' fightin' Daddy dyin', an' some things what is left unsaid. You mighta had bad 'speriences and But God didn't put you here to stay where you was. He put you here to get to where you are goin'.

I figure it like this. He loved me enough to give me life in the first place, even if it's a hard one. All he asks you to do now is love him and help other people the best you can. And do what he says in the good book. If you do that he will look out for you and your people and will bless you and the works of your hands. The preacher told me that one. It's not a bad deal, in my mind.

My Flu Prevention that Didn't Work - and Marilyn's Homebrew Flu Cure that did.

Sunday, November 15, 2009 10:46 AM Posted by Tondeleo Lee Thomas

I have been down with H1N1 the past several days, and it has been dreadful. I came down with it several days after arriving in the States, and a few days after visiting Doc and Marilyn. Doc, as you'll recall, was sick in bed, attempting to "sweat out" whatever it was that he was ill with. He had all the symptoms of H1N1. Fever, chills, aches, pains, coughing, bad stomach, all of it. He had what I am experiencing now.

Doc had refused my homeopathic immune system boosters, calling them "quack medicine," and that he "weren't no duck," so he "weren't takin' no quack medicine." When I told him that it wasn't medicine, and that it was all natural, he informed me that anthrax was all natural and that he wasn't taking that either.

Last evening, I phoned Doc and Marilyn from my sick bed. Marilyn answered the phone.I found out that Marilyn never came down with H1N1, which their circle of friends refers to as "the pig flu."

She says that the Lord kept her from getting the pig flu because Jesus knew that Doc needed her to cook for him and to help him get well. Doc got over the pig flu in three or four days and was back working on cars and singing and writing new songs already.

I asked hmarilyn3er what did she fix for him that made him well so quickly? "Well, mostly I'd cook him beef broth, made from cookin' beef bones in water and garlic an' onions, with some black pepper in it. You cook 'em for about four hours an' then let it soak. I'd give him a cup in the mornin' an' one at lunchtime an' one at supper time an' one about 10 at night."

"I also got lemon juice up at the Safeway's over to Bryans Road, an' put that in hot water with some honey in it an' cinnamon an' nutmeg. I gave him about five cups a day in his drinkin' jar. You gotta flush out that flu so it don't stay in his liver an' such."

I asked Marilyn where she learned to do that. "It's just what people know what lives out in the country an' gots to be their own doctor. We're about almost a hour from a doctor an' we ain't got no 'surance or nothin' so we got to come up with what we know. Some of it is just somethin' everyone out here knows, an' other of it is just what comes up in your spirit to do.

"Like, anything what kind of goes up your nose when you smell it will make you feel better - like cinnamon an' nutmeg. Ginger is good for you. Peppermints. We grow them in our yard. You can smell it. So is rosemary. An' peppers, an' onions an' garlic. Dark coloured fruits an' berries is good, too. Like blueberries an' poke berries. It's just somethin' that you know. You put it in hot water an' drink a lot of it.

"Red clover blossoms is good for you an' my grand mama said it would get rid of cancer. I ain't never tried it but she said it does. She would make tea from it an' drink it 4 times a day an' lived like 15 years after the doctor said she had stomach cancer. It ain't what killed her, Tondy. It was a heart attack."

I don't know how these people come up with their concoctions, but I do know that they seem to bounce back to health more quickly than those of us that go to the doctor seem to. On the other hand, maybe it is the high amounts of horrid liquids and sweating that actually get the flu to want to leave the body as quickly as possible so it can go infect someone else! I don't know. All I know is that I need to end this and run to the 'loo - right now!