Re: 70's Texas ranch
Hello, everyone. We, the editors of xFamily.org, would be interested in starting an article (for our wiki) on the TSC. We would welcome any input from those of you who were there. Anything describing the place, daily life, compound layout, stories, leaders, pictures, etc. would be most welcome.
I remember only being there for about one week, the time when it was being shut down. When I first arrived, it was COG as usual - bible classes by Joel in the mess hall, meals in the mess hall, washing dishes for about 350-400 people until the next meal, inspiration after dark, dumping the barrels of waste from the outhouse. They gave me a cheap cowboy hat to wear because they said some of the locals had been firing shots in our direction and maybe the cowboy hats might deter that action. We even filmed that horrid movie that Joel directed, all dressed in sackcloth carrying staffs. I was sent out on an expedition with 2 other brothers all armed with hunting knives to cut staves from the surrounding brush for the film. The movie direction had us marching out of the gate of TSC and down the dirt road. I remember a vehicle coming up the road who, upon seeing this army of sackcloth clad prophets, jerked into reverse and sped away backwards. I saw that "movie" later in Venezuela and knew exactly where I was in the long line of sackcloth because Love, the girl I was standing next to passed out from the heat and fell into a ditch behind us. The movie had no "zoom-in" and the scene of the line of sackclothed COGs was from a great distance and unbroken until she fell. None of us went to her rescue because we were being filmed and we were just afraid to screw up this movie. After the shoot, we then attended to her as a colony of ants were now attacking her, and we got yelled at for that. But good little soldiers we were.
It seemed like I was there a lot longer than a week after the word came down that we were being evicted. I don't think that term was used. We spent our days loading trucks with whatever was salvagable. There was some friend not very far away who allowed us to unload a lot of our supplies on that person's property. I remember each day planning where I would collapse that night for sleep. We emptied the "free store" of all of its clothing into a great mound, and I had decided to bury myself in that pile after dark. I climbed up to the top of it after midnight and almost stepped on the head of another brother who had thought of the same idea and was buried in clothes up to his neck. Instead, I just crawled inside of the now abandoned shack that had housed the store and fought off mosquitoes all night. One day I helped gut an old school bus of all of its bench seats, and I fell asleep under the flagpole on one of these seats for the night. A helicopter buzzing overhead awoke me the next morning. These helicopters followed us constantly from the compound to the area where the "friend" allowed us to drop the goods and back again.
I had long hair and a beard. I was advised to shave and get a haircut. I had a cold shave and the wife of one of the Atlanta band members, the old "Souljers", gave me a short haircut. Then I was sent to Houston.
If you ask me questions I might recall more. I am a bit senior now. I had no significant length of time there that others had, but the eviction was a momentous event.