Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The ease of the word

I was reading in bed last night and was impressed with an author’s smooth writing style. She had a great ease in her words that made the story flow. I noticed it rather by accident after I had read quite a bit in a very short amount of time. It made me think of my own style and my tendency to be a bit hurky jerky in my story telling.

I was jealous. I want to write that smoothly and stylishly, but then, I sort of like my style. I think most of my readers like my style. Otherwise, why would they read it? Probably guilt.

It’s something I’ll have to work on I suppose.

In other news, the rest of this week I will be taking a little time off from my hurky jerky writing style to celebrate my birthday. So from Wednesday through Sunday I will not be writing my blog. Unless something awesome happens and I am compelled to write about it, like I meet the girl of my dreams or I get the greatest birthday present ever. (Which could be one in the same I suppose). But I’ll settle for that vacuuming robot.

So try to get though the next few days without me. I know it’ll be tough but I’m sure you can comb through the archives to tide you over for a few short days. But just in case, here’s a wee poem to hold you over till then.

Wind or wind?

The winding wind wound
rapidly, brushing leaves
off trees in a final act of fall.

We wavered and wallowed in
winds while waiting for trains
to whisk us to where watches
wind away our hours.

It’s the wind whining about the
wind we woefully screwed
into with breezy reluctance.

Have a good few days dear readers and I’ll return reinvigorated and ready to tackle the next few aggravating months of winter.    

Monday, November 28, 2011

So much

Dorothy was not happy to be back at work after such a long break. Of course, she knew that no one was happy to be back after the four day weekend, but it did little to comfort her as she trudged along with all the other worker cattle. She could see her own sad face reflecting in the mournful cow eyes of her equally disenchanted fellow commuters. She fixed an errant hair that had blown into her face as the chilly wind curled up around her as made her way toward her office building.

College had failed her completely. She had a degree in nutrition sciences but there were no jobs for anyone in that field. So now she worked in an office that managed the medical benefits for older Americans. And those older Americans were mean. There were more than a few times Dorothy had to leave her desk in tears after some curmudgeon had given her a stern talking to about how awful her company was. They always had a terrible story about how they lost a son in Nam or a daughter to a bad marriage. They always thought they were right because they beat Hitler and no 28 year old office girl was going to tell them different.

Dorothy got to her coffee place with the other cows and waited in line. Each cow got their mocho-choco-latte-espresso-mucho-grande with four shots of super espresso or half-caff-decaff- green tea with a scone. Dorothy got to the counter and obediently mooed her regular coffee order; just a medium coffee with one cream and one Splenda. That was all she needed to start her day. She stepped from the coffee shop and looked at her tall office building standing monolithic like in the morning chill. She felt a pain in her stomach and her heart freeze in her chest. The cows around her continued their busy, shoving path, completely ignoring her.

She felt a tear welling in her right eye and she wiped at it with her gloved hand. She should have run off and joined the circus or maybe joined up with some outlaw bikers, anything would be better than entering that cold office world. Dorothy looked away from the building and saw an old black woman holding a small sign, begging for what little change people could spare. The woman was ragged and dirty and Dorothy could smell her molding clothes.  She was sitting against the coffee shop wall in a mess of old blankets and refuse.

“Please Jesus, help me Jesus”, the old woman repeated as people passed her by without any acknowledgement. Dorothy thought about giving the woman some of the change she got from the coffee shop but she doubted thirty eight cents would provide much comfort. Dorothy felt the sadness creeping in again and wondered what it was all about. What was the point of it all?

“Here you go”, said a man as he passed the old begging woman. He had given her a breakfast sandwich and something to drink and just kept walking by. Dorothy only just heard him and didn’t really catch a glance since she was so mired in her own thoughts.

“Bless you sir, bless you, thank you Jesus, thank you”, cried the woman after the unknown man.

Dorothy looked back at her office building and took a deep breath. She crossed the street and entered.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Half Day

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving. That means today is supposed to be a half day at work. Which means you have to do a full days work in less time. Which means I don't have time to write much more than this today.

I hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving and enjoys the holiday weekend. We'll return on Monday with more awesomeness. Probably.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

48 years

I wasn’t born when J. F. K. was assassinated. I was born 13 years later. I have been fascinated by Jack Kennedy throughout my life though; from his being second to Joe Kennedy Jr. in their father’s eyes, to his slightly inflated war record, to his ability to step up into a time and place that needed him.  I wonder what the world would have been like if Jack had lived.

Historical theorists have a lot of opinions regarding Jack’s possible political wrangling if he had lived. He would have likely hastened the Civil Rights Act through Congress and likely would have scaled down America’s involvement in Vietnam. While he was responsible for some troop increases, it’s likely he wouldn’t have “Americanized” the war the way Johnson and later Nixon did. After the Bay of Pigs, he had serious distrust of the military and likely would not have followed their plans for escalation in Vietnam.

Jack was anti-poverty and would have worked to ensure that all Americans had a chance at success, but would have stayed away from the idea of government supported welfare. He would have stuck to his inaugural message of, “Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.” As a Democrat he did believe in public welfare, but he thought of it more as communities taking care of each other and not having to be nursed on the government’s teat. That Americans can take care of Americans and it was right to do so, but it was a job for the people and not any political party. Much like the plans to go to the moon, he believed in the boldness of America and its people to accomplish great things.

It’s quite likely that had he lived he would have had a second term through 1968 and Richard Nixon never would have made it on the ballot. In fact, if the policies and programs under consideration at the time of Jack’s assassination had been able to come to fruition, it is unlikely Ronald Regan or even George H. W. Bush would have been elected President.  

I’m not saying America would be perfect now or that we wouldn’t have any social or economic problems. I’m sure there would have been a lot more rocky seas ahead, but I can’t help but speculate on what the world would have been like had Lee Harvey Oswald stayed home on November 22, 1963.

Monday, November 21, 2011


I want to be a writer. I want to wake up at ten a.m.,
crank out a few thousand words or more,
go back to bed, get some lunch,
crank out a few more thousand words, go to the bar, smoke,
 meet a girl who makes me forget I want to be a writer.

I want my Sundays not to be filled
with dread and worry as Monday
approaches. Each passing Sunday
hour feels like listening to the
band on the Titanic before it’s
sucked into the cold heartless

I want to be prideful about
what I do with my head held
high and not merely
doggie paddling just to stay

But I have to keep it short
I have to keep it brief
I have to stop,
and work on the work
that keeps me from my work.

It is dreaded Monday
after all and it’s blood lust
is limitless,
and there is no relief for us

Friday, November 18, 2011

Jelly beans and sex

Now that I have your attention I’d like to discuss the quantum mechanics of reality. Just kidding, let’s talk about candy and sex. I don’t really eat candy and I haven’t had much sex lately. I’m on what single people call, “A Dry Spell”. I’d like to refer to it more as a ghost town next door to a dry riverbed, near a Denny’s. Not the good Denny’s either.

I really only mention it because of the brutal ride I had on the train this morning as I made my way to work. It seems I got on the beautiful people’s train car on accident. As I was searching for a seat on this very crowded train car I caught the faces of some of the best looking regular people I have seen in a while. It was wild. Even the guys seemed to be above average in the handsomeness department. I quickly found my seat and tried to cover my own hideousness with a rag newspaper.

This of course was only interrupted by the young gay couple behind me having a minor morning disagreement. I was waiting for one of them to tell the other how beautiful each other looked in their wrath. I’m not a homosexual but I was jealous of their argument. Sometimes I think it would be nice to have a minor morning argument with someone I care deeply about. I’m sure tonight Kyle and Jason will be in each other’s arms, consoling each other and feeling just silly about that stupid train argument. While I will be thinking about how many more ways I can make bologna appetizing for dinner. Basil perhaps?

It’s not really just about sex though. I need real intimacy in my life. Like, “Honey, I got you a Mountain Dew because I know how much you like them”, sort of thing. I want to be sweet as candy to some young woman. I want to represent all the good things in her life and I want it now. I’m tired of sitting on my couch, watching the beautiful women in the Macy’s commercials having fun in knit sweaters. I sit there and think, “Hm…nice sweater”.

So this train ride this morning had my head spinning and I felt filled with desire for a lot of the very beautiful women riding along with me. It was really something else and you should have been there. And now, as I write this I feel like Norman Bates in the beginning of Psycho as he eats candy from the brown paper bag while he’s being grilled by that detective looking for Janet Leigh.

I need to stop going out on Thursday nights. The Friday product is just confusing. But I did get you with the whole, “sex”, in the title thing didn’t I?

Thursday, November 17, 2011


The doctor came into Angie’s room just as she was waking up from a strange dream about her mother. Angie was still trying to figure out why her mother looked like she was made of flowers when the doctor started speaking to her.

“Angie? Angie, it’s Dr. Rob, can you hear me”, he asked.

Angie found that she couldn’t speak and tried to lick her lips but she couldn’t find the spit. She nodded at Dr. Rob.

“I wanted to let you know that everything with your surgery went great. It looks like we got all of it and you’ll make a full recovery.”

Dr. Rob lightly patted Angie on her shoulder in his usual slightly cold bedside manner. He was a great doctor but just didn’t seem to like to touch people which seemed very strange to Angie.  She nodded and tried to smile but her lips were cracked and dry and it actually hurt a little bit. Dr. Rob smiled at her and started out of the room just as a nurse came in with some water and a straw and held it out for Angie to sip from.

Angie sipped the water and felt the coolness fill her mouth and soothe her parched throat. She nodded at the nurse in thanks. The nurse left the cup on her bed table and left Angie alone. Angie still felt a little groggy and sleepy but she wanted to stay awake. She wanted to get back to enjoying her life instead of being sick and tired all the time.

“You made it”, said a voice from the corner of the room.

Angie lifted her head up and tried to look around to see where the voice came from. She couldn’t see anyone. She actually had the room to herself. The patient she had shared the room with at the beginning of the week was gone.

“We didn’t think you were going to make it, but here you are. Just amazing”, said the voice.

She heard a chair slide across the floor and saw a tall man in a black suit sit down next to her bed.  Angie tried to ask who he was but her throat was still so raw from the tubes and such she couldn’t make a sound.

“Don’t get worried Angie. I’m just here to see the contract is fulfilled”.
“With…hospital”, asked Angie in a hoarse whisper.
“No Angie. I’m not with the hospital. Not directly I guess.”

Angie shrugged. She actually thought she was still dreaming.

“You’re not dreaming anymore Angie. This is your new life. The life you begged and prayed for. The promises you made for your life. I’m here to make sure you will follow through with those promises”, said the man.

His voice was serious and gravely. Angie turned her head to get a better look at him but his face seemed just out of focus. She could make out eyes and a nose and a mouth, but nothing specific, no freckles or moles or out of place hair.

“Promises”, asked Angie.
“Yes, promises. You promised that if he got you through this you’d dedicate your restored life to spreading his gospel. I’m here to make sure you do just what you said you’d do. But I see you’ll probably need a little time to recover and that’s okay. I’m sure we can make another deal.”
“I wasn’t serious”, said Angie, “I would have said anything. I didn’t want to be sick anymore. I don’t even believe in the devil”.

The man sat back in his chair and adjusted his suit coat and tie.
“Who said anything about a deal with the devil”, he asked, “Your deal is with God, remember?”

Angie didn’t actually remember. She’d been sick for so long and made so many pleading promises to all sorts of deities. She remembered asking Buddha to make her into a silk worm when she was reincarnated, but a deal with God, she didn’t really remember.

“I don’t remember signing anything”, said Angie.

The tall man smirked and leaned forward.

“You didn’t. You don’t have to. He knows. You’ve been called upon to fulfill your promise, just as others in the past have been called upon to fulfill theirs. You are to be a prophet”.

Angie felt hot and her throat was drying out again. The man picked up the cup the nurse left and held it up so Angie could get a drink.

“I’ll call upon you again soon. In the meantime, rest and build your strength. You will need it.”

The lights flickered overhead and Angie blinked. She looked to the chair and it was empty.

“So”, she thought, “a prophet”.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

I will have more coffee

Having recently discovered the second coffee break area at work I now have a second place to get my free cup of office coffee. It’s just Folgers or Maxwell House or Murderbrew, but it’s something. It is difficult at times to get that cup of coffee however.

This morning I went to the first coffee area I was aware of and discovered an empty coffee pot. So I did the right thing and made another pot and then decided to head over to the new coffee station. I was happy to have this option available to me. The only problem is the distance between these two coffee areas.

The two areas might as well be on opposite sides of the planet. The first coffee area could be called “New York” and the second coffee area could be called, “Moon”. So the walk (with my painful goutish shuffle) to the moon took a bit longer than I prefer but I was able to obtain a fresh cup of coffee. However there were no creams or sugars available on the moon so I had to shuffle all the way back to New York to get a little flavor for my morning pick me up.  

While I was on my interstellar office trek I could feel all those prying cubicle eyes preying on my movement. It was a little unnerving. I felt as if the man eating lions of Tsavo would lunge out from around a cubicle wall and commence to eating my bloody guts. I might have picked up my limping pace a bit just to get back to the safety and misery of my own cube. Of course walking fast, with a limp and a hot cup of coffee is also a circus trick in and of itself. So I had to juggle my irrational fear and my coffee without spilling any.

But now I’m safe, back in my cube, sipping a pretty damn good cup of coffee and there are no lions in sight. I’m sure they’re laying low in the tall office grass somewhere, but for now I’m content to write this and sip my French Vanilla flavored coffee.
I only hope the day runs smoothly and there aren’t too many cubicle villagers picked off as they make their way to the copier or fax machine. Freaking office lions, who knew?

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Hell’s Harpies

“I think I finally do believe God exists”, said Toby.
“What makes you say that”, asked Clem.
“I realized that all the struggling and toiling I endured had to be for something greater than myself and once I had that epiphany, I saw them”.
“Who’d you see”, asked Clem.
“The demon”, said Toby.

Clem moved away from Toby slightly on the park bench and tightened his fall jacket up around his neck. The wind had picked up a bit and he had a chill. A sudden chill.

“Are you sayin’ to me that you came to a life affirming realization and the validation of God because you saw a demon”, asked Clem.
“No, no. Not at all. What I’m saying is that I realized that God existed and he loved me before I saw any kind of demon or stuff like that. It was after I accepted God that I saw a monster from hell”, said Toby.

Toby looked at Clem with earnest eyes. They’d been friends on this park bench for nearly 15 years. They both liked the spot because it faced west and the setting sun cast a lovely golden glow on everything as they sat. They both retired about the same time and just happened upon each other.

Clem always marveled at their chance meeting. Toby was an old white guy and Clem was an old black guy, from different backgrounds and neighborhoods, sitting together every Tuesday on a park bench to feel the warmth of the setting sun. They knew quite a lot about each other but Toby’s realization of the existence of God was quite a revelation.

“So, how did you realize God existed? I mean, we’ve been sitting here for years and you never brought it up”, said Clem.
“I was watching my grandson play with some clay and it kind of hit me all of a sudden. I mean, I started thinking about my life, my childhood, the death of my parents, work, buying a house, working harder to provide for my growing family, all the things that I had molded with the clay of my life and I thought, well shit, somebody had to provide the clay”.
“Somebody provided you with the clay? Man…that is the lamest thing I’ve ever heard. The damn clay. What did you think before this whole grandson with the clay thing”, asked Clem.
“I never really thought about it. I just did what I did and figured it was all up to me”, said Toby.

Clem rubbed his graying chin and thought about his own struggle with religion. He had believed in God for his entire adult life until his wife passed away. He had fought so hard for her and romanced her and finally got her to be his wife, only for her to pass away from cancer after only five short years of marriage. He’d actually stopped thinking about God, and here comes Toby, doing the opposite.

“So, what about this demon thing”, asked Clem.
“Well, after I saw God in my grandson’s mushing and molding of the clay I caught a glimpse of a demon on the bus”.
“On the bus?”
“Yeah. I was sitting in my car in traffic and I just happened to look over at the bus next to me and I saw a demon sitting on the bus”.
“Like riding in the bus or sitting on top of it, like, on the roof?”
“No, it was just riding the bus. Sitting there, waiting for its stop”.
“Did you start a new medication I should know about”, asked Clem.

Toby chuckled and shook his head. He reached into his pocket and pulled out a folded piece of paper.

“Here, I drew a picture of what I saw”, he handed it to Clem.

Clem took the paper and unfolded it. Toby was a talented artist and what he had drawn made Clem gasp. On the paper, drawn in simple pencil was the face of evil. It was the face Clem had seen the very night his wife was taken from him.

“You okay”, asked Toby, “You just went so pale”.

Clem dropped Toby’s drawing to the ground as the wind picked up.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Napalm Monday

I always feel like a jerk when I complain about my job, especially so soon after Veteran’s Day. It’s not like I just saw my best buddy in the whole world get blown up by some mortar fire or horribly burned in a napalm attack. I’ve actually got it pretty easy and I should be thankful for it.
So I am aware of how ridiculous it is to complain about my stupid cubicle job, but I am compelled to do so.  But I have to keep this brief as I’m well behind the eight ball today and need to get a lot of unfulfilling work done.

Maybe tomorrow will deliver some better news and I suppose that’s at least one reason to be optimistic. Plus my horoscope said that two lovers will be fighting over me, which is really weird since I have no lovers that I’m aware of,  but I’ll keep my fingers crossed.

Ow, I think I broke a finger.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Little to say

It’s amusing to me when I start writing something that disintegrates into foolishness. I was just writing a little short story about a mousy bookworm who desperately wanted to be a slut. I know, it’s a completely silly idea and purely male. I erased what wrote almost as quickly as it had left my fingers. There was something funny about it though, but I don’t think I’m a good enough writer to mine it out.

I think my Catholic sensibilities got in my way as well. I don’t think I’ve ever even written a passionate sex scene in anything. I usually avoid it because it makes the Victorian in me nervous. It’s a natural part of being human, feeling passion for someone and wanting to express it physically so I’m not sure why it makes me so squeamish to write about it.

I like sex, but I don’t often talk about it. I am rather reserved when it comes to the whole thing. However, I will tease some female friends I know regarding our past intimacies and end up being as rude as the stereotypical construction worker hooting at the pretty ladies on the sidewalk. Most of the time I think of it as harmless flirting, but I am aware that it can become a little objectifying. I feel ashamed later but while the moment is there I can’t seem to see the harm. Most of the time I’m just egging them on in the hopes they’ll flirt back, which they don’t often do and I end up feeling more alone and undesirable.

It’s passion I’ve been lacking. Sure, I’ve been passionate in moments of intimacy, but it’s just a moment. I’ve not felt that long lasting, smoldering passion for someone in quite a long while. I wonder if that’s why I can’t seem to accurately describe a love scene in what I write. I have a hard enough time writing about two people kissing. I see my six year old self covering my eyes when two grown-ups kiss and thinking, “Gross!”

So it’s no wonder I would try to write about a mousy bookworm exploring her desires without having the first idea about what it means to live with passion. Now that I look back on it, the story has more potential than I thought. In fact, as an exercise I should probably make an effort to write that story and see what that mousy bookworm and I can discover together. So I guess this piece has become a trailer for an upcoming release.

I guess I had more to say than I thought.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


Today I woke up with serious and debilitating foot pain. It was so terrible that I was hardly able to walk. But I had no choice and had to get to work. I had to make my morning train. I was in a hurry (of course) and had to double time it to catch my train. As I hobbled along the sidewalk, limping and cringing with each painful step I was reminded of my good friend Quasimodo.

I am sure you’re familiar with the deformed bell ringer of The Hunchback of Notre-Dame. (Why isn’t he the mascot for Notre Dame Football? A French named school with an Irish mascot?) I felt like the Charles Laughton version of Quasimodo, as I shuffled along trying to avoid any further foot discomfort. I almost felt like shouting, “Sanctuary! Sanctuary!”, as I climbed the ramp toward my train.  I’m sure the face I was making helped convey the whole Quasimodo look. My lips were snarled, my teeth were clenched and my left eye was squinting with each painful footfall.  

I’m sure at least three of you who read this will comment by saying, “Well go to the doctor then if it hurts so much”. And if it gets any worse I will, but you see, I am a man and won’t go to the doctor unless the foot is juuuust about to fall off. And that would only happen after the duct tape bandages had failed. So stow it.  Plus if I didn’t have that pain, what else would I write about? Happy trees and Disney flowers singing about how bright and sun shiny the glorious day was? Who’d read that? That’s lame. People like to read about pain.

Quasimodo wouldn’t be such a wonderful literary character without the immense pains he suffers. We wouldn’t care much for him if he was just, say a deaf bell ringer with Brad Pitt’s looks. We’d be like, “Damn, I hope that bell ringer falls”.

I digress however and return to my original point, my freaking feet. I thought it might have been the shoes but after buying new ones and still being in pain it must be something inside. I’m sure my alcohol intake and diet of microwave breakfast sandwiches isn’t helping either. But I refuse to accept the idea that my body can’t take care of itself and that I’m not as young as I used to be. I have to face the fact that my metabolism has slowed down considerably. It’s quite difficult to “check yourself before you wreck yourself”.

I also attribute my pains to the lack of any serious tender, loving care. Much like poor Quasimodo, I fall for every girl that wants nothing to do with me; or my pained feet. It’s not like I’m looking for a foot rub, I wouldn’t wish that on anyone, but it’d be nice to be in someone’s thoughts that way, as if they would consider giving me that foot rub because they care about me in that way and want to ease my self-pitying misery.

I hear bells.  

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

The rain and the right

Liz honored the rain. She felt it was like a car wash for the city; a quick way for Mother Nature to wash everything down and start over for a while. It appealed to her sense of universal connective-ness. Or as her, “Human Beings Humane”, teacher, Dr. Ragit Bagraba, taught her, that humans are connected to every act of nature and should not fight against it but embrace it as one would a deeply desired lover, or connectivitude.

Liz had been going to Dr. Bagraba’s seminars and lectures and had bought all his visualization books for the last several years. She was nearly as knowledgeable about Humans Being Humane as Dr. Bagraba himself; she just hadn’t reached Stage 13b yet. But in typical style she did not view it as a failure but as an unrealized opportunity for transcendeancitudeness, which was discussed heavily at the conference in 2009.

Dr. Bagraba had described Stage 13b as a state of perpetual calmness on seas of ever swirling energy. It was oneness with nothingness attached only to the inner child of emptiness.  It was a lot of breathing and Yoga and eating things that came from a goat and Liz wanted to reach Stage 13b. It was now her only motivating factor and each morning, after welcoming the sun in her room with the Stage 4a illumination dance, she would begin her Stage 13b preparations.

Since it was raining this morning however she decided to do the Rain Embrace mantra as fast as she could. She really felt that today was the day she could reach Stage 13b. She said her Rain Embrace hymn and hurried to her bathroom. All that Goat milk had played havoc with her digestive system. En route she noticed she had a voicemail message on her cell phone. She grabbed the phone from the charger and continued to the washroom.

She sat to do her morning business and checked the voicemail. It wasn’t a number she recognized but for her, all things happened as part of nature and it was to be embraced. She held the phone up to her ear and listened as her body did what nature designed.

“Ms. Liz Carpenter? This is Jerry with Bonanza Books and Tapes. This is my fifth call to you regarding the outstanding balance on your orders for Dr. Ragit Bagraba’s eighth and ninth book releases. Your current outstanding balance is $352.63. If this matter isn’t resolved by week’s end, we will be forced to send your account to collections. Please call me back at….”.

Liz hung up her phone and grabbed the toilet paper. Since dedicating herself to reaching Stage 13b she decided she wasn’t going to work anymore, so she hadn’t received a paycheck in months. By following Dr. Bagraba’s Stage 11c she could expect nature to provide her with all the things she would need in this life, before reaching ultimate freedom with nature at Stage 13b of course. Then, money, food and even sex, wouldn’t be necessary. Although lately she had been missing the sex.

She had a great boyfriend two months ago but he thought she was getting a little out of control with Dr. Bagraba’s teachings so he left her, but she justified it because that was what nature intended for her. Her soul would find satisfaction, sexual satisfaction in Stage 13b anyway.

Liz flushed the toilet and wished her natural releases a safe and profitable journey as they returned to the cycle of life. She washed her hands and looked up at herself in the mirror. She had let herself go recently, all the Goat related foods had caused to rapidly put on weight and it was clearly showing in her face. She also had been using an all natural soap when she chose to bathe and it seemed she might have been allergic because she had a terrible break out on her face. But again, if this is what it took to reach Stage 13b then she would do it.

She left the bathroom and returned to her bedroom and sat in the 3rd position as described in Dr. Bagraba’s third book, “The beingness of BEING”. She tucked her heels underneath her and with knees bent in front of her she laid back onto the bed. This position allegedly let your energy flow from your, “centers of power”, and help you relax. Liz’s ex-boyfriend liked this position because it basically pushed her lady parts up and open. But according to Dr. Bagraba it wasn’t to be used for sex as that clogged the energy release portal.  Liz started her deep breathing cycle and chanting on the exhale.

Thunder rumbled outside and it rattled Liz’s windows. She was a little startled and lost her place. The rain pelted her bedroom window and Liz caught herself thinking about her old job and all the wonderful friends she’d left behind. How they’d probably be out now, cowering under the eaves as to stay dry while smoking their cigarettes. She suddenly felt very lonely, which according to Dr. Bagraba, wasn’t Stage 13b.

She switched to the 7th position and tried to control her breathing, but the wind was howling outside and it sounded like a tree branch was tapping against the side of her apartment. She belched to clear her Maki Center, and tried to embrace what nature designed. She tried to feel sympathy for the rain and nothingness from within.

Her cell phone started ringing from the bathroom, but Liz ignored it. It was Jerry for sure. She continued her breathing and moaning, listening to the rain.

Monday, November 7, 2011

In a flash

I’ve got to write this quickly this morning. I don’t have much time to tell you all about the squirrels gnawing at my windows which woke me up at 5:00 in the morning. I barely have time to describe the construction noises out on the street starting at 7:00 a.m. I’ve only a moment to write about how dreadful coming to work was this morning.

Squirrels are trying to invade my apartment. There are two (I know it’s two) that think it’s just a wonderful idea to start their day by gnawing on the aluminum frame of my windows. The noise is akin to fingernails on a chalkboard and being yelled at by that one Aunt, you know, the crazy one. It woke me up from my usual deep sleep like nothing has ever before; probably because the noise was so strange. I had to get out of bed and search in the darkness for the source of the noise and by the time I figured it out the little rats had escaped.

I was able to get back to bed and go back to sleep for a little while, until the construction started down the block. I’m not sure why they started with heavy machinery so very early. I could have slept for another ½ hour at least. I tried to force myself to stay asleep but it was to no avail. I had to get out of bed and attempt to face this November Monday.

As the train I was riding into work got closer and closer to downtown I could feel myself getting sadder and sadder. The constant thoughts about what awful things I had to do during the day made me want to go crazy. Really. Just have a complete and total freak out on the train. But then, would anybody notice? I had to shake the whole image from my head of running up and down the train car screaming about how pointless it all was. But that would have been weak. And who likes to see such weakness on a Monday morning?

I found myself then scanning the employment opportunities page in the little rag of a paper I grab for free. There was nothing there that I wanted to do. Office guy, general labor guy, firefighter guy, lab assistant guy, it was all the same crap, another job and not a redeeming, worthwhile career.

Okay, I have to get to work. Damn it. For now I’ll have to keep up this mind numbing, soul blistering, cubicle existence and try to look for something better.  Squirrel Wrangler, maybe?

Friday, November 4, 2011

Brain wash

Today is one of those mornings where I am struggling to come up with something to write about. I hate these mornings. I blame one of my drinking companions at the bar last night. He put this idea about how bad Dial soap is and how I should write about how terrible it is. It’s been stuck in my head and has kept me from digging into anything else.

So fine, I’ll write about the damn soap. My friend said he was not very happy with this soap because of its concave surface. Every time he was in the shower, using the soap, it would squirt from his grasp and tumble into the tub. While I don’t consider this too great of a tragedy my friend felt it was a significant design flaw with the bar of soap and he was nonplussed.

He was so upset with this soap that he took the two remaining bars and gave them to some of his employees to take home and test. He wanted them to verify that the soap was just god awful. Thanks to alcohol I don’t remember if I asked him if his employees provided him with any results.

Now that I’ve gotten that out of my system I can move onto other topics of greater gravity. Which are…damn it.  I am still thinking about the damn soap. I need to get this story out of my head. I tried to write about how cruel it is that I can now see into my neighbors second floor apartment (because he doesn’t believe in curtains and it’s his own fault) where he and his new girlfriend are constantly cuddling and laying all over each other on his couch. It’s complete and utter jealousy on my part. I want a girlfriend to cuddle with and share things with and make a spectacle of ourselves in my apartment windows.

But I’m stuck thinking about damn soap. I don’t recall ever using Dial soap, I’m sure I have in the past but it doesn’t stick out in my memory. What does stick out is my stupid neighbor and his sexy girlfriend writhing all over each other while I’m just trying to eat a microwave burrito and stare at them. It’s not a pervert or peeping Tom thing. It’s pure jealousy. This guy, he never goes out. I’ve seen him on that couch playing Xbox or whatever he has, every night. Even on Friday’s and Saturday’s he’s just there, sitting on his couch, shirtless, eating. And yet now, somehow, he’s got a cute little girlfriend who seems to hang on everything he does. While I go out all the time (well, to a few bars) and meet people constantly, yet I sit alone; jealous of my young neighbor.

I wonder if I should ask him what soap he uses.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Ho-Ho-Hold on a second

So I saw several Christmas themed television commercials yesterday. I had to rub my eyes in disbelief and shake my head back and forth like a cartoon character that had just been struck in the face with a skillet. Is it that time already?

This holiday season sure has arrived with unusual speed. It seems like just yesterday I was standing outside of one of my favorite bars, smoking a cigarette and complaining about how I was unable to stop sweating under the unbearable summer sun. I remember quite clearly the heat coming up from the scorched sidewalk blending with the heat from the sky above. It was like a convection oven. I remember wishing for a cool breeze and then remembered the bar was air conditioned so I went back in.

But now, it’s cold, rainy and gray and Thanksgiving is just around the corner. I’ll take a moment not to gloss over Thanksgiving like most major corporations advertising on TV seem to do. Thanksgiving is a great holiday because there’s no giant expense involved. It’s basically, show up at a relative’s house and eat until you can hardly hold your head up. Now that’s a great holiday. No presents to buy, no major decorations or costumes to fuss with. Eat a bird, share a few laughs and go home.  Maybe take some leftovers for some sandwiches later.  It’s a good holiday.

I’m not sure why advertisers hate it so much. I suppose if I was a person of a different faith that might not actually celebrate Christmas; I might be a little frustrated with the immediate marketing blitz and the elves and Santa and the carols. At least Thanksgiving is relatively non-denominational and we can just celebrate it without dragging religion up to the table.  

When I see these Christmas commercials so early I am reminded not of how jolly the Christmas season can be, but of how little money I have and how hard it is to buy people nice gifts when I barely have enough money to buy groceries for myself. I hope everyone likes the homemade macaroni art they’ll be getting from me this year. Oh, macaroni is sort of expensive, maybe pipe cleaners. It’s a Pipe cleaner Christmas.

I sort of wish advertisers would acknowledge how early they start their marketing for Christmas, like a commercial that says, “Hey, we know Thanksgiving is coming, but remember our Christmas lay-away plan. Okay, have a good Thanksgiving. See you at Christmas time. Bring money”.

I know that’ll never happen. The Norman Rockwell picture of a family Thanksgiving has been corrupted by Santa and his slave labor force; pumping out material goods to cram in our overstuffed need holes.

Chri$tma$ needs to take a break and let Thanksgiving get into the club and shake its thing for a while. It’s been so long, I’m sure Thanksgiving will do the Mashed Potato and maybe the Twist and probably get tired by then and need to sit down for a while. Then Chri$tma$ can get back on the floor and fist pump and all that.   

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Positive attitude

I try and I try
to keep my chin

I tell myself it’ll be
okay and everything will
be fine.

I can get through it
I can do it
I think I can

But that little engine
that could
isn’t interested because
all the railroad workers
are on strike in the hopes
of obtaining a living wage
that won’t keep them trapped
in poverty or servitude
and wind up old toothless
men, crapping on themselves
in shoddy nursing homes,
begging to die.   

I’ve got to keep my
chin up. It’s only Wednesday
after all.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Love and Marriage

So in order to stay as topical as possible I’ll throw my hat into the hubbub and hullabaloo regarding this celebrity couple that ended their marriage after only 72 days. I won’t use their name in this piece simply because I can’t spell it.  Actually I don’t want to spell it. I think if you do it becomes a gypsy curse and you start thinking you’re important without actually being important.  Cue the gypsy violins…

I haven’t had the best examples of a fully functional marriage. I’m a child of divorce. My parents were on the verge several times of murdering each other, I’m sure of it. But they stayed married for a lot longer than they really should have and when they finally called it kaput it was possibly the happiest day in my life. The stress and constant tension in the home was relieved and it seemed like having a life was a possibility.

When I was a teenager it seemed most of my friend’s parents were either not together or relatively indifferent to each other. I only saw one happy couple but their extreme happiness with each other made me very confused and afraid. Something in their smiles made me think they were each plotting the other’s untimely demise. I think they are still married however and likely just as happy with each other now as they were 20 years ago. Or still just biding their time.

A marriage after 72 days shouldn’t really be considered a marriage and if two people who thought they could make it work were wrong, well, I’m not going to fault them for it. They made a mistake and ended it before one of them wound up in some sort of international murder plot. The real slap in the face is the extreme extravagance of the actual wedding.  Most folks that are in love have to plan and save for a wedding at least a year in advance, and even then they barely break even once the actual day arrives. It’s stressful and an incredible hassle. But, as I’ve been told, it’s incredibly worth it when you see your betrothed coming down the aisle. The cost and expense melt away as you are enveloped in love and excitement.

This celebricouple however spent an incredible amount of money and in the end, for what? 72 days of uncomfortable stares and nervous giggles? It’s a real punch in the gut for the regular folks that are doing everything they can to save the money for just a plain white wedding dress and maybe a nice pizza place for the reception. It smacks of elitism and we hate that. Go ahead and have an expensive wedding if you like, but keep it out of the news and keep it to your family. I don’t consider it news or having any relevance on my daily life. In fact, I’m a little annoyed at myself for writing about it now.  

I hope to get married someday and experience the joy of a strong and honest partnership with someone I can look at in 60 years and still say, “I love you more today than on the day we married”. Then she’ll look at me; maybe take my hand and say, “What?”