Last May, we told you about a slim volume of home-spun tales by a retired musician remembering his 1940s childhood in rural Pennsylvania.
What made that book, True Confessions of a Kid, remarkable, however, was that it was written by Ron Miscavige, father to Scientology leader David Miscavige, and a man who literally had to escape from Scientology’s secretive International Base in California in 2012. We broke the news of Ron’s escape from Scientology, and we’re still waiting to hear the man tell his story of souring on his son’s organization.
Instead, Ron put out a book of childhood yarns. And now, he’s done it again. In Hideouts for Midgets on the Lam and other totally disrelated stories, we are told again about what it was like to grow up in Mt. Carmel, Pennsylvania, where coal was king, and where young Ron began playing trumpet professionally in bars at only 13.
But this time, he brings us forward to hear more about his adulthood. We hear about his service in the U.S. Marines band, for example. But for Underground Bunker readers, there was one anecdote that has special interest.
“Life in the suburbs was good,” Ron writes. “A nice colonial house, three bedrooms, two and a half baths and a recreational field within a half block of where we lived.”
Ron taught his kids how to swim, and they had a dog, Fluffy, that had a tendency to bite people. Ron then recounts what it was like to renovate a rec room with the help of his father. And then he interrupts his tale for an anecdote…
As an aside, prior to building this rec room, I decided to put in a fenced-in area in back of our house, so I could put two of my kids outside and not worry about them running into the street.
So one weekend, when my Dad was visiting with me, we went out to a local hardware store and bought some fencing, stakes to wire the fencing to and a gate to complete up our little enclosure.
We came home, went to work and by dinner time were finished with this little project. Here comes the litmus test. I go in the house, grab my kids — who by the way were twins — good looking as all get out — take them out the back door to show them their play area and without hesitating for a moment, they climbed over the fence and looked at me and my Dad. We just looked at each other and laughed.
It’s a charming tale, and of course, the twins he’s referring to are today Denise Gentile and David Miscavige — the young man who went on to be the ultimate ruler of a ruthless, billion-dollar worldwide organization.
We couldn’t help marveling at the image of Ron’s kids escaping the enclosure he’d built for them, knowing that decades later, Ron would have to escape the enclosure his son had put him into in the California countryside.
Another interesting tidbit. Ron remembers his days in Catholic school, where he was called Ronnie Miskiewicz, his Polish name. (If you’ve ever wondered where the odd name Miscavige comes from, now you know.)
As for the book’s title, Ron allows himself a fanciful chapter that will win him no brownie points with Peter Dinklage or other Little People. Or with woodpeckers. We’d explain, but it’s probably better left to the imagination.
We appreciated learning more about Ron Miscavige in this little book — like that he lives and dies with the Philadelphia Eagles, for example — but we’re still left waiting for the story of how he fell into Scientology and then watched his young son become its most powerful member. And how he managed to find a way out of the heavily guarded Int Base. Ron, come on, give us a call.
UPDATE: PEACHES GELDOF DIES AT 25
A very minor celebrity died today, and we’re sorry for her family.
Peaches Geldof, 25, did dabble in Scientology, and at least did the Purification Rundown. But a sign of how serious she was came later, when she said she’d moved on to OTO.
Ordo Templi Orientis was something L. Ron Hubbard took part in several years before he invented Dianetics and then went on to Scientology. Our regular readers are well aware of Hubbard’s experiments with fellow occult fan and rocket scientist Jack Parsons of Caltech as they performed OTO rituals in 1945 and 1946. Ohio State professor Hugh Urban has demonstrated that Hubbard subsequently lifted many ideas from OTO when he developed Scientology, so it’s not all that surprising that someone dabbling in these ideas would move from one to the other.
Did Geldof’s involvement in Scientology or OTO have something to do with her death? Probably not. But who knows. We’re going to refrain from the breathless analyzing going on at other publications. Peaches grew up in a family with some pretty serious issues, and we feel mostly for her two small children.
Posted by Tony Ortega on April 7, 2014 at 07:00
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UP THE BRIDGE (Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists) 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43
SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING (Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts) 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46