39. Curiosity is rewarding
My diary entry for Sunday 9th of June, 02 started with: “Every morning I get up and do more weeping than praying.” It was the teasing game that continued almost daily. I read about a project by an MP, the one I had seen two years earlier about the bad road safety statistics and only one other instructor turned up. She was reported to be conducting a video conference from the Women’s and Children’s Hospital to six other centers around our state. The subject was “How to avoid old people from falling”.
If the date was April 1st I would have understood. But why video-conference from a women’s and children’s hospital when it’s about old people falling? The word old rang a bell, as readers may recall from previous chapters. I also liked the ‘falling over’ bit. My very first alert to a media article was by the Editor of Messenger Press. At the time I had read about a guy called Submarine Pete who kept falling off his bicycle. Somehow I identified with bike-riding Pete. I did fall off twice, but I only submerged for a while, during the stay in mental hospital.
In another article was Minister Laidlaw showing off a Housing Project at Wingfield, a western suburb. A family man, Mr. Chris Home, was also featured in the article. My linking brain (or should I refer to it as spirit) remembered the visit I had to the Women’s and Children’s Hospital in an attempt to get support for my road safety book. I was terribly stressed at the time. This avenue, as so many others had done, went nowhere, very often because of my lack of follow-up.
The person at the hospital I dealt with was a Mrs. Home, the same surname as the family in the Wingfield article. To close the circuit of co-incidence I was the one teaching Mrs. Home’s two boys to drive. Mr. Home worked at Wingfield, if I recall correctly. Looking at all the factors I just pushed the buttons I thought were necessary in this case. I phoned the Member of Parliament and left a message, wishing her all the best for the video conference. I also phoned Mrs. Home and chatted about the boys driving and made small talk. If I had stuffed up, so be it, nothing lost. If I was disobeying my inner voice it would cause far greater anxiety.
It was the ‘not knowing’, the constant doubt, which caused the greatest frustration. Why would God make me ‘c’ trivialities that anybody else would just dismiss, I don’t know. I prayed the ‘your will be done’ prayer regularly. One Friday evening I happened to come across a TV show on our National ABC TV Channel. Two politicians, one from each of the two major parties, were debating issues of the day in a light-hearted sort of way. I recognized the Liberal participant, Chris, as the husband of a young lady I had taught to drive in or around 1987.
As the debate concluded the interviewer asked Chris about the Holy Grail in Adelaide, or so I understood. There was a slight humorous slant to the question, which always made my antenna rise up. Chris answered with a smiling face, urging the reporter to just wait and see how things would develop.
Holy Grail? What is the Holy Grail of Adelaide? During driving lessons and in between I had much time to think. It sank in a day or two later. Holy is self explanatory. Grail sounds exactly like ‘grey L’. Grey I was not, not even old, but the insinuation was there. The L also fitted my shoes. I imagined myself to be the Holy Grey L.
I did what I knew best, send Chris an email:
Subject: Holy Grey L
Great performance on "Lateline" Friday Night.
You don't know me. I am the person who gave C… driving lessons many years ago. Matter of fact I remember she had a lesson the morning after you were preselected and how excited she was.
Say hello for me. Nice to see you place value on your family, as it was printed in the "Weekend Advertiser" last Saturday.
Bob D. Fischer
On the 23rd of June, two weeks later I had opportunity during the Liberal Party’s Northern Regional Convention to ask Chris himself, what the ‘Holy Grail’ was all about. I introduced myself as the sender of the email and we chatted briefly. I mentioned the Holy Grail. He replied, rather vaguely, it was a joke politicians were perpetuating in the pubs around Canberra. I had the feeling he was genuinely pleased to meet me. Two months earlier I had been elected President of a local Liberal Party Branch.
At the same meeting I could not help myself making a joke with one of the speakers, a Senator and very senior Minister in the Liberal Federal Government.
After a genuine laugh the Senator turned to me and asked in a more serious tone: “Who are you?” I said: “My name is Dieter Fischer, I am a Branch President”.
The question, “who are you” was posed to me again not long after. I had noticed a full page advertisement in the Advertiser by the head of a huge car maker in Adelaide. It praised the chief of its main city dealership and congratulated him for outstanding achievement. I thought it was actually a bit overdone, but there it was.
A few days earlier I had mailed the car company with my latest invention. It was a simple device, fitted to a motor car for perhaps $ 5.00, which would reduce injuries under emergency braking. (I have an interim patent, so I can’t divulge details). In my wishful thinking, constantly linking mind, I saw a connection somehow. I thought no harm was done in phoning the person, who was so successful to have such public praise lavished onto him, and congratulate him.
I checked the telephone directory and I realized the last four digits of the dealership’s phone number (7666) were the same as mine. I was convinced to be doing the right thing. Of course I did not get through to the person, only to the secretary. She seemed a little puzzled about my phone call. I just said that her boss must be a great man to receive such honour from such a high level (or words to that effect). She then posed the same question as the Senator: “Who are you?” I just said I was a Holden supporter and politely ended the call.
The word supporter was also used at the time my name was printed in the paper in the Baise-Moi saga. It would again feature strategically in a few months during a very emotional moment of my life.
In May 2002 I thought the time was ripe to start telling my story online on dieterfischer.com. I had registered the domain name in August 2001, realizing back then that something extra-ordinary was taking place. Isobel and I had an agreement at the time. Because of my illness (or what she thought it was) I was to ask her permission every time I spent more than 50 dollars.
I broke the rule inadvertently by registering my name as domain name when she was visiting her brothers in Sydney to celebrate her mother’s 80th birthday. I didn’t want someone pinching my name and registering it as .com. It had happened in the past to famous people and they had to buy their own name back. Not that I was famous, just notorious.
One of my church friends agreed when I asked him if I could use his post office box number to receive mail anonymously. I phoned the advertiser and placed a small add into he ‘Positions Vacant’ section: “Volunteer wanted to upload website on the internet”. Write to Post Office Box… The staff at the newspaper knew me by now and the message I was conveying is that I am ready to speak out about my story. One young girl, a student looking for work experience, sent me her résumé, nothing else. I was unsure how to treat this offer of help, if that’s what it was. The only contact I made with her was dropping my business card into her letterbox as I drove past her house in Kent Town, on the fringe of Adelaide’s CBD.
I was surprised that by now no reporter wanted to write a story:
“A weirdo, religious freak thinks a paedophile is in jail innocently”.
Or another bizarre headline: “Rebel driving instructor believes someone died in his place”. How about: “Government stuff-up places SA at the bottom in road safety”.
Placing the advertisement was really just testing the waters as to how the media would react to my ‘going public’, if indeed there was anything to go public about. A possible answer to my question came as a code on a large billboard outside a church in Para Vista. The messages on that particular ‘road side pulpit’ were always uplifting and interesting. I felt almost always spoken to personally. Shortly after my ad appeared in the paper I read the message on the billboard as I drove past: “Real Champions can wait 5 minutes longer.” Not only the words but the number 5 did the trick. I would wait as long as it takes.
The play of words, especially exchanging of the letters ‘a’ and ‘o’, had me intrigued. But it took me a long time to decipher the email I received from a journalist. (I assumed he was one and lived in Canada). At least on two occasions I received an enquiry from this sender in Montreal. The name of the city was predominantly placed into the email message. It was a request for information to complete a study of driving schools world-wide. Eventually it clicked. If I switched the o to an a and treating the t as a cross, one could read – man t real. This line of thinking borders, however, on pampering to the ego, which I did not want to indulge in.
There appeared an article in The Advertiser newspaper on 6/7/02 on a topical subject, stem cell research. One of South Australia’s Senators advocated leaving God out of the discussion. Not the words, but also the page number where it was printed ( page 5) kicked my spirit into action. I wrote her a letter:
Dear Senator …,
In the article on page 5 in The Advertiser today you are quoted as saying that religion should not enter the debate. I don’t know your stance on church or God, but strongly disagree that we should leave God out of any debate, especially on issues of life and death.
Human life begins at conception. A tiny five day old embryo has the potential of becoming a world leader. A small seed can grow into a huge tree. Tampering with (or killing) human life for scientific purposes without considering God, is unwise. Perhaps we ought to have thought about allowing the creation of embryos in the first place?
Personally, I believe God wants to be part of all our affairs. Without him I can not take another breath or type one more letter into this keyboard. If we like it or not, the author of life is in control of life. The good news is, all he wants is for our ultimate good, if we let HIM.
Just look at the collapse of US (and Australian) companies whose directors chose to operate without Christian principles. God is not the author of misery. Humans who choose to step outside his sphere of influence will sooner or later reap what they have sown.
Instead of waiting if God will punish the (evil) doers of stem cell research, let’s rethink the issue. Perhaps a creative thinking church leader will come up with a good idea.
Bob D. Fischer
The Senator, Mrs. … sent a very nice reply to my letter. She is also a Federal Liberal Government Minister. Was my notoriety circulating amongst the Canberra politicians? What a boost for my cause, just to imagine our politicians are discussing God. Doesn’t every sitting of parliament begin with “Almighty God, we beseech thee…? How can you pray that prayer and then advocate to leave God out of the debate?
Isobel often interpreted my activities as a boost for my ego. Many times I pondered myself about my true motives. There is a fine line between confidence and ego. When I was younger, feeding my ego may have been the motive. But since my mental breakdown I had learned that my wishes, wants, plans, opinions or preferences are of no consequences as long as God’s will was being done. Seeking HIS sovereign will became my true motive. I let my frustration at Isobel’s unbelief out in an email to my silent contact at the Advertiser:
You are probably the best person to judge, if I have a big ego. My wife Isobel thinks I do and it hurts me. Yes, I do have a big dream and am not going to let it go. But it causes me to be humble myself rather than to exalt myself.
If anyone needs exalting it is the mastermind behind my dream. The one that made it all come true. You know who I mean.
God bless you
I am sure many people I sent emails to did regard me as having a huge ego. But the main difference is the source of the feeling of being in control and ‘having it all together’. My lack of fear and power for action came purely from the Holy Spirit, the same force every Christian has available to them. Many Christians just never avail themselves to this wonderful, powerful friend, who is part of the trinity. The other two are God the father and Jesus, HIS son.
On the subject of abortion I held a strong pro life point of view. Killing human life is never an option. As with euthanasia we are playing God, if we decide over life or death. The western philosophy of ‘abortion on demand’ under the guise of ‘endangering the mental wellbeing of the mother’ or the attitude ‘it’s my body and my choice’ will face God’s wrath on judgment day. God is not mocked, whatever man sows she shall also reap.
Abortion does not even make sense from an economic point of view. An article in the paper on Mon 13/04/02 prompted me to send a letter to the Editor of the Advertiser. I told the organization promoting family values about my email:
Above Advt. headline (Mon. 13/4) about our low population prompted me to sent the following letter to the Editor:
Business people please note: Five thousand abortions this year means 5000 fewer prams sold next year and 5000 fewer strollers in three years. Teachers note: 5000 abortions this year means 5000 fewer enrolments in five years and 50 000 fewer driving lessons in 16 years. Bad for business.
It has as yet not been printed. I will not be disappointed, if it won't be. Today’s scripture in the same paper gives me hope:
"That's how it is with my words. They won't return to me without doing everything I sent them to do. (Isaiah, 55,11).
My letter to the editor was not printed at the time. This did not bother me at all. As the scripture in Isaiah says, the words we speak will accomplish what God’s will intended them to achieve. I spoke out and HE took care of the details. A wise, old proverb comes to mind: The pen is mightier than the sword. And God is mightier than all pens in the world put together.
I was experiencing this truth first hand.
Autobiography - Dieter Fischer
1. More in number 2. A sound mind 3. Now I'm found 4. Candle and the Wind
5. Realm of Nature 6. All in his Hand 7. The Wonder of it All 8. To Think God loves