.....In browsing through bookstores today one sees that there is no shortage of biographies or autobiographies available. Most of the subject's names in the books have become household words and so one can readily conclude that this category of writing has largely become the province of celebrities or well-known personages, the so-called rich and famous.
.....There are a few who unabashedly attribute their success to fortuitous circumstances such as being in the right place at the right time or perhaps facetiously crediting the "Man Upstairs." On the other hand, in many of these accounts amazing feats of derring-do have been conjured up by ghost writers who had been given a free hand, thus lending a new shade of meaning to the phrase, "creative writing."
.....This writer states that Nicholas J. Besker's story is literally the truth and nothing but the truth, that he had no need to resort to fiction. "Just the facts," as Sgt. Friday would say. Not only was I an eye witness to these events but was also a fellow-victim for eight years. Fortunately, I was not numbered among the Beerinsky group, the bedwetters, and consequently escaped the inhumane treatment and humiliation of those unfortunates.
.....Despite my statement verifying the authenticity of Besker's book, I can well understand if skeptics regarded Besker's account as a figment of imagination. I consider it is an illustration of the old adage that indeed, "truth is stranger than fiction." Except for the grammatical violation in using the term, it might well be said that his description of life in this childrens' warehouse, aka orphan home, is most unique.
.....The time, setting and circumstances of Nick's "sojourn" in the orphanage have long since been obliterated by the sands of time and, like much of the long-ago past, cannot be recreated or duplicated today. To begin with, the location of the orphanage. It was situated on the shores of Lake Michigan on several acres of otherwise clear land, and was one of six Catholic institutions clustered in loose fashion in an enclave of a square mile or more.
.....This community was fenced off by brick walls, wire fencing and dirt roads. While access to outsiders was not rigidly controlled, it was unlikely that one would stray onto the premises of this "Forbidden City" unintentionally. These buildings within were cold and soot-encrusted. For all intents and purposes, they were as isolated as though patrolled by armed guards. There is little doubt that this absolute isolation and shielding from public scrutiny were major factors in developing the peculiar lifestyle and sadistic methods of discipline (torture) practiced by these "Brides of Christ."
.....This memoir book is an account of child abuse, oppression, bestiality, discrimination, humiliation and fear which was compounded and sugar-coated with religious gobbledegook and/or superstitions of the infallible Holy Mother Catholic Church. It held the same credibility and validity as that offered for the torturous abuse of the various Inquisitions, that indeed, "the end justifies the means."
.....By the time Nick was unceremoniously drummed off the premises of the orphanage into the realms of the unknown to wit, the normal but mysterious outside world, he was little more than a shell of a fifteen year old boy, a caricature. To all outside appearance, except for the clothes on his back, he was indistinguishable from any other teenager. However, the exterior was little more than camouflage, offering no clue to the confusion and disorientation raging inside. At fifteen years of age, he was inured to a robot-like state of lethargy, devoid of initiative, stripped of any self esteem and submissive to any vestige of authority. In a word, his entire physical and mental makeup was adapted to one environment, life in the orphanage. This is hi