Thursday, March 31, 2011

Six Eggs In A Row Followed Me

Six eggs in a row followed me on Twitter. What's the odds? Which one will hatch first?

I will watch over them. Maybe put them back in the nest so when their momma shows up, she can sit on them and keep them warm. And lovingly pray over them. God bless little Malcolm, little Herman, little Nolan, little Sandi, little Garfield, and little Zack. And just because they all seem to have different daddies doesn't mean anything. Nothing against their momma, that is.

Someday they'll be big and healthy!

Your Place At The Kennedy Assassination

As more and more kids of my generation become senile and forget it all, I suppose I should address the assassination of President Kennedy. We just had the last World War I veteran die, and, for all I know, I might eventually be the last one to actually remember the events in Dallas in 1963.

When I say I will address the assassination of JFK, of course you'll excuse me if I say I'm not going to address everything about it. The scope of that would be so massive, for one, and, two, it's already been done in an encyclopedic way that would far surpass anything I might say by way of ignorant, secondhand conjecture. Not to downplay the veracity of my own opinions. Plus, I simply haven't got the time to do it, since I too am feeling more senile everyday.

So please excuse me if, in the course of this present post, I confine myself to a more narrow purpose, to document the supposed feelings of a few of the folks along the motorcade route. To accomplish this task, first, I will give my own thoughts about standing on parade routes; then, second, I will express some of the supposed thoughts of the people on the motorcade route that day in 1963. The two, my parade thoughts and my thoughts about their thoughts are two separate things, but obviously both will come out of my own head.

First, what I'm thinking when I'm on a parade route. Thanks to the assassination of JFK, oftentimes when I'm on a parade route, I'll think about it. I'll think, If there's trouble, will I be a reliable witness as to what happened?, as I wish I would have been had I been on the scene at Dealey Plaza in 1963. I wonder, depending on the dignitaries present in the parade, if I would leap into action if there were an assassination attempt. In 1963, of course it all happened so quickly, and most people were caught off guard, and anyway, it was the Secret Service's job to protect JFK. But I was at a parade in which former Beatle Pete Best passed by, and someone might've dashed the car, a diehard Ringo lover. For about 20 seconds, I was ready for anything. Lastly, when I'm at a parade and I don't have a video camera, I figure I won't be the Zapruder of the day. I glance over and see another guy with a camera and figure that's our Zapruder.

Notice how concerned I am about possible assassination attempts, all thanks to what happened to JFK. And what happened to his brother and MLK didn't help. I think the key thing in my favor -- and I'm proud of this -- is that, more or less, I can well imagine that I'd be fearless in facing whatever. I like to think I would be. Only, you don't want to leap in if there's no genuine attempt and end up looking like a fool or in jail. Like if an antique car backfires, and I immediately assume it's an attempt on Pete Best's life, I rush the car and push him into the backseat, thereby breaking his hands. Him being a drummer, that'd be disastrous.

But I've been at political events where there's been some genuinely prominent politicians, including, now that I think of it, Barack Obama before he was president. The Secret Service was out in force and told a guy next to me to keep his hands out of his pockets. It honestly could've been that I might've had to have tackled that guy. Again, I would want to have probable cause to do so, or I'd be the one who went to jail. "But he had a gun!" ... "It wasn't a gun, it was sunglasses."

And there have been others who went by me and were able to leave the building or outdoors venue, thanks to my vigilance and willingness to lay my life on the line. And I haven't even mentioned my various time travel fantasies over the years in which I'm able to change history. It bugs me to realize that even if I could travel through time, of course the folks on the scene wouldn't believe me that I was from the future, and it all would've happened anyway. That's only partially true, though. For instance, JFK's security forces never would've believed me, true, because I was just a random kid from the future, but if I could've made my way to the Texas School Book Depository, Oswald didn't have any security, and I would've stormed the sixth floor. I'd love to be the guy to go back in history and kill Oswald. The problem with that would be justifying it to the authorities at the time, since he hadn't done anything yet, except take a couple shots at General Walker, who I wouldn't know from Adam. Let's say I did kill him, then I get back to the present day and everything's changed. Since no one else would know the difference, it'd be no big deal.

My second purpose today is to think of the thoughts of the folks on the actual motorcade route. Whoever was a block away or more would be thinking, "Too bad I was a block away or more. But at least I was there!" Their testimony is worthless, since they were in the wrong place. But those who had the foresight to be right there on the scene -- including Zapruder, although he would've been smarter to have several cameras going simultaneously from various points along the route -- all have a story to tell.

Here's what I imagine they've been thinking over the years: 1) "If only I would've known what was going to happen, I would've done something to prevent it." 2) "It was like a blur, it happened so fast." 3) "I just turned my head for a moment, then--. 4) "I thought it was firecrackers." 5) "It's haunted me all these years, I wish I hadn't even been there, I haven't been able to sleep since." 6) "I was on the front row of history, damn the luck." And so forth. It's a combination of despair and understandable helplessness.

I might back up -- since I thought of a few -- and sketch out some of the thoughts of the folks up-route. 1) "When he passed my station, he was OK." 2) "He wasn't killed on my watch." 3) "I did what I could on my block. All was well." 4) "He was good as new when he left my side." You can see, their thoughts take a different tone, one of heroic participation in the event, as though they had anything to do with where the marksman wasn't. They're a lot more opportunistic, but it's hard to prove they weren't each individually responsible for the president's safe passage thereto, since maybe their vigilance thwarted a second completely unknown assassin.

As for me, I resonate most with Number 5 of the first group, "It's haunted me all these years..." because that's exactly how I feel about it. Nothing in life has haunted me so much, and that includes all the many challenges of puberty. To think Oswald could carry a gun in there that day and do this, it's still too much.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

I Wrestle God At The Wadi

I was left alone last night, and wrestled with a man (if I may call him a man) until the break of day. And it wasn't the Pink Professor -- would that it were, the territory would be familiar, being virtually identical to my own.

I fought like a banshee -- a banshee that's really trained for fighting. I fought so hard, the guy I fought saw he could not prevail. Only he touched the curvature of my belly, admittedly bigger than it should be this close to my next doctor's appointment, and I became immediately hungry. The longer we wrestled, the more desperately I wanted to break for a sandwich.

But of the two of us, who said uncle first? Him! He said, "Let me go, for the day is breaking!" I went, "It does every morning about this time." Then I cried, "I will keep my grip until you bless me." The lesser not usually the blesser, this was awesome, but I'm thinking he let me win. Still, I'll take my power where I find it.

He asked my name and I told him. I won't withhold my name if someone really needs it. Of course I don't bandy it around online much, because I'm paranoid about my future viability. But for someone I've clutched all night, if he doesn't deserve it, no one does. In response, he told me that my name and standing would be greatly enhanced, as it was his pleasure to give. "As a prince have you power with God and men and have prevailed."

Then I asked his name. Of course I was curious. He balked at the question, and squirmed, but I tightened my grip. He saw the pink light of day peeking over the horizon and finally coughed it up, "Shankar Bhagwan, the creator."

We spoke theologically (mythologically, same thing) about the Sembar tree, and he confirmed that indeed the holy spirits live in it. Then he noticed how I'm balding and chuckled. We both chuckled about it, as we remembered how he'd created three great trees from three hairs pulled from his body. In jest, I said, "I still have enough hairs on my body -- all told -- to come up with a forest. But if there's any similarity between the type of hair and the tree it produces, it might be a forest of kinky shrubs. But the bare spot on my calves would make a great clearing in a savannah."

I was very glad that I'd read at least the first few pages of his book, "The Night Life of Trees"! Because of that, and the vise-like grip I had -- and I could've crushed the nuts of one very potent nearby tree -- he blessed me there. I relaxed my hold.

I called the name of the place, Peepul, after the Peepul tree, the creator's home, worshipped by Hindus and the forest people alike. What a morning! I reflected, I have seen Shankar Bhagwan face to face, and I've lived to tell about it! Then as I passed over the stream of Peepul, the sun rose on me, and I felt the tummy ache, my hunger pangs still there and getting worse.

Therefore, my people -- the vast issue from my loins (it could happen, given the right combination of Cialis and women) -- will not cease having appetites and regular meals forever, because he touched my belly, and the pangs of hunger overcame me at the wadi.

Note: This is based on Genesis 32:24-32, and "The Night Life of Trees," by Bhajju Shyam, Durga Bai, and Ram Singh Urveti. It's quite a lovely book, published by Tara Publishing. It's handmade, each page being silk-screened by hand on black paper. The above picture is from the first few pages. There's no page numbers.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Meditation On A Brick

When I meditate, generally, it's very much a scattered thing. I can't do the one point, staring at a candle thing. I have to let my unruly tamasic (and proud of it) mind wander. I only wish I had more time to do it, there's no telling the hidden things of life I might uncover, then keep to myself so they wouldn't be misused.

So my meditation on a brick, which I'm typing out, won't be any different. Not only that, but my meditation session has already been interrupted! I just remembered an appointment I have across town. So I have to leave the brick here on my desk and go away. Meaning the next thing you read in this post will be some hours later -- and the spirit of this moment will vanish, and the whole thing will be crap.

Some minutes later -- I went to the bathroom and got my notebook, etc., so I'm more or less ready for my appointment, giving me a few minutes to get some of the preliminaries out of the way here. Still, there's not time to really engage myself in actual meditation on the brick now.

I will mention where the brick came from and the photo of it. First, the brick is from a place I used to live. They were tearing it down some years after I'd moved, decades really, and my mother was driving by and saw what was going on and went in and got me this brick. She also kept one for herself, which, who knows, I might inherit someday, if I outlive her. So that's where the brick came from. I'm happy to have it, too, for whatever reason. One thing, it provided a good foundation for me all those years ago when I was asleep inside the house. If it hadn't been for the faithful bricks at the foundation, I would've woke up to a pile of rubble every morning, with the house collapsed.

Now, about the photo. I usually get most of my pictures from Google pictures and mash them up a bit. And I thought about doing that with this post too. But then I thought, it'd make it so much more meaningful to me and the readers if I featured the actual brick. So it's almost like you're here watching me meditate on it. I arranged a couple other things for a background, mostly so I wouldn't have to clean up the room; I don't want you to see my clutter. So I have my sacred gong, that helps keep me from spiraling out of control. Anytime I feel insanity coming over me, I reach over and smack it lovingly. Or sometimes when the insanity strikes, depending on where I am, I might have to drive 50 miles to get home, darting in and out of the traffic stream and all kinds of craziness to make it. The worst thing that ever happened was I came to a closed interstate and had to shoot my car over the gap where a bridge once was. I came down with such a bang that the prism hanging from my mirror is still going back and forth. By the time I pulled into the yard, the car was wheezing, belching exhaust and flowing over with boiling antifreeze. But I still made it, rushed into the house, smacked the gong and everything was better. You can see why I'd like to stick it in the picture.

And behind that is my sacred first Devo LP. I still study the lyrics for clues to the world's demise. If it goes down brick by brick, you can see it fits the picture...

OK, I need to get going for my appointment. So I'll hope that I'm still in the mood to meditation on my brick when I get back. Till then! ...

Over two hours later and a family emergency later -- I've been thinking about finally being able to get home and meditate on this brick, and now here I am.

I drive by a building made of bricks and I usually think of how much work it was for someone to put all of them up, building the thing brick by brick. It's challenging to me, but I remind myself that they have always been well trained to know what they're doing. They're heavy boogers. But stacked up nice and neat, they make a nice house. You just don't want the mortar to go bad between them, because then everything could fall down. I see some rough buildings downtown, like when you're in an alley; the mortar's going bad, being there for a hundred years. An earthquake or tornado and it'd all crumble.

The Meditation Proper -- I'm acquainting myself with this brick. It is precious to me because of the old apartment connection. I found something the other day that I wrote about the elderly lady who lived downstairs from me. This old brick held her up too. As far as its physical nature, it's got a smear of paint on one side. Some of the mortar is on one of the broad sides. It's got some cracking on the other side. There was a lot of strain on it over the years, being pressed between other bricks, then holding the house. Plus, I was up several nights pacing the floor, which couldn't have helped.

What do I think of when I think of its interior? Something rock solid, yet made by man and not just by nature like a rock. At some point all those years ago, it was just a bunch of clay (or whatever), it was probably mixed together, then poured into a mold for hardening into its present shape. It's a very basic shape, which hasn't changed much all these years in the realm of bricks.

My meditation takes this kind of turn, to its longevity and the utilitarian nature of its purpose. It never came into being to be meditated on, that's one reason this feels so weird. If I weren't so crazy sentimental about things, I'd toss it in a brick pile somewhere and forget it. If I hadn't looked at the paint smear, I'd probably never have been able to pick it out from a dozen others.

But go way back, I was never that sentimental about the bricks of the house while I lived there. They were just bricks. When I moved out, I wasn't thinking, "I really hope they tear down this place someday and I get a brick from it." The thought didn't even cross my mind. Had my mother not gotten it, I would've never known the difference. In fact, I might've figured the house was still there since I seldom get to that town anymore. I wouldn't have been any the wiser. No one gave me a shingle, a board, a piece of a window, and I feel like I get along perfectly OK without it. Just this one brick.

One brick out of so many, why should I meditate on it? That might be just the reason, because it is one out of so many. Why did I get this particular brick? What twist of fate happened to put it in my hands like that? It's incredible that it even happened like that. And out of all the bricks, shingles, windows, and boards, this one was chosen. I don't know how. So it is worth meditating on.

Conclusion -- I'll spend some quiet time with it ... some other day.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Hardwired To Barely Function

Sometimes I think I'm hardwired to barely function, then I find that I function fairly well. As it turns out, just because I'm my own worst critic doesn't mean my criticism is always true.

There are plenty of people who are hardwired to barely function, and in those moments when I know I'm not, I feel sorry for them. But they serve a good function even in their dysfunction, being the reminder for the rest of us that, "There but for the grace of God go I."

If you happened to get the short end of the stick on the wiring, at least you're fit enough to read this. Whether you'll ever be the same afterward, that's your responsibility.

I'm just thinking over how some people are hardwired. Routine is one key element in a lot of hardwiring. If your routine is to get up every morning and have coffee, it's hard to do without it. There's an ad on TV about a guy (looks like he's hardwired to be a go-getter) who's almost late for work, so he hasn't got time to make coffee. But he drinks an energy drink (5-Hour) and he's good to go. I'm hardwired to avoid all weird drinks like 5-Hour Energy. I've never had one and don't expect to. To me it sounds like you're agreeing to something later for something now, like a bargain with the Devil.

Not everyone's hardwired to look ahead to consequences. But that's one of my biggies. I'm hardwired to look way ahead to the consequences of my actions. It's an offshoot of paranoia. I'm on the lookout for everything. If you've ever watched birds always on the lookout for predators, that's me. A rabbit poking his head out of the hole. But as far as I'm concerned, that's good, it's nature's way. It's given me a certain amount of willpower, to keep thinking of the worst that could happen if I gave in. So far it's kept me out of prison and a million and one scrapes. But I look at the local news -- there's always another murder or drug bust -- and I see not everyone's hardwired the same.

Sounds good, but wait... There's a downside to too much looking ahead to consequences. It means you tend to avoid risks. So I'm going to have a hard time making a million dollars at this rate. Because I'm not out there doing things that have the potential for a big payoff. I've got a certain level of equilibrium and I'm hanging on to it, not increasing, not decreasing. Although, actually, if you're not increasing, you are decreasing to some extent. I could be going for a little more gusto, that's reasonable. But I've got my way ... and at this point I'll probably stick to it.

There's lots of other things about hardwiring. Your goals, being task-oriented, perseverance, ways of thinking (magically, rationally, scientifically, religiously, etc.). I guess it's a more boring subject than I thought at first. Personally, I like to get things done. Slog away at it till you've done a reasonable job, then move on to the next thing.

I know, I know, big hairy deal.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Bad Vibes -- My Intuitive Success

There's two titles that go great together, "Suspicious Minds" and "You'll Think of Me." Because when it comes to suspicious minds, I'm a good one to think of.

I have this terrible thing that happens to me, which in this case I present as an intuitive success, since I knew it would happen. The terrible thing is I have bad vibes leaping off me, occasionally, so obviously that the average person can see them, or at least discern them. And I must look incredibly suspicious.

Whenever it happens, I'm a little withdrawn for some reason. Like from the weather, or, worse for me, when my natural insecurities are at the fore. There are reasons for this, because sometimes I don't allow time for decompression following intense meditation. Or maybe my basketball team loses. Or the car's having trouble starting, etc. So I'm walking around, looking withdrawn, feeling inside like everything's cinched up.

I go to a store and I guess I look like trouble. Even though I'm a perfectly respectable person who would never do anything wrong. So it happened exactly like that tonight. I'm getting some deli food at the grocery store, then walking around the store with it. I'm looking for nothing in particular, just for something else to go with the meal but nothing looks good, so I look at odds with my surroundings. Invariably, and tonight it happened again, someone comes up to me out of the blue and says, "Are you finding everything OK?" Which I mentally predicted would happen; that's the intuitive success.

Then I'm walking to the cash register and the checkout lady looks like she's going to have to take me down, because I must really look like trouble approaching. The bad vibes, very angular, are ricocheting off the walls; I always wonder what it looks like to the average person; I really wonder what it'd look like to a psychic or someone who can see auras. Probably like a porcupine. Or an unpleasant entity floating over a cemetery. It's not a comfortable feeling, but still very interesting.

At the cash register, then, the cashier was unexpectedly (from her point of view) comforted when I flashed my "preferred customer" card, then it was obvious I was just a normal guy with an eccentric, undefinable approach.

The Pink Professor, my traveling/dining companion in this life, and I had a good conversation in the car afterward. With my intuitive success being something for me to brag about.

The 911 Gauntlet

You'd think if anything in our society were efficient and helpful, it'd have to be the 911 service. Their short little phone number's been drilled into everyone's heads as the go-to number for any emergency. We know it by heart and trust it'll be there when we need it ... even kids in daycare learn it.

You see the quickness of firetrucks, ambulances, and police cars when they go racing by, and you think, That's efficiency! But what if half their speed is only to make up for lost time thanks to a secretly inefficient, bloated 911 bureau, where the operators are trained to be skeptical and therefore slow to respond?

It's just a thought I have, mind you. It's not that I have any personal experience with these wankers. Although, now that I think of it, I remember one time trying to call 911 when there were big sparks flying out of my furnace; it's not that they were slow to respond that time, in fact there was no answer at all. My imagination says that if I actually got them that time, they would've been very skeptical, like, "We've never heard of that before, sir, and we're not sure that's physically possible. Did you know you can be charged for making crank calls?"

The way I picture it, the bureau only hires skeptical people, then they're trained to hone that natural skepticism, so the guy calling in has to prove he really needs help. Because, look, it costs a lot of money to send out the ambulance, firetruck, and police; if they could whittle away 25% of the calls, that'd be a pretty big savings. Who's really going to know? Because our assumption is they're actually responding to 100% of the calls.

So they're skeptical. But what are they looking for, or listening for, when you're on the phone? How frantic you are, whether you're a natural born actor or not. They're going to put you through their paces. I said it costs a lot of money, and that's true, and just think how many pranks -- boy crying wolf -- they've had over the years. We've all heard of people calling 911 because they were stuck in traffic, or their house was on fire but it was only a porch or something.

If you have a medical emergency, it makes a lot more sense, from their point of view, that you would try to help yourself. If you're bleeding to death, it only makes sense to ask, "Couldn't you use your cigarette lighter to cauterize the wound?" You're screaming something and they can't make it out, so they go to the trusted, "Sir, you're going to have to stay calm." Then the phone suddenly goes dead ... and you do too.

If you've ever toured the 911 facility, you'll remember the chart they have, keeping track of how many times each operator has been fooled by callers. It's a competition to keep the number low, like golf, so naturally they're going to question every little thing. Then if someone actually dies, it's no big deal to edit the MP3 of the call or overlay some line static as a good excuse. And everyone knows technology fails most of the time, so if the whole file goes missing, it could've happened to anyone.

Questioning pays off, because really most calls aren't legitimate. The cat wasn't really lost and turns up, or eventually gets out of the tree by itself. But like I said, the 911 bosses are looking for skepticism way back, even in the interviewing process. If you don't show a lot of skepticism, you're out. And it's tricky stuff, too. "You got the job, Smith!" If Smith says, "Yay!" then he doesn't get it. But if they have to convince him, "No, really! C'mon, Smith, you got it. Look, man, I swear on my mother's grave, my son's life, and my enviable manhood that you have got the job," that cinches it. We've now got an impenetrable 911 operator!

The rest of us might suffer, but so be it. An entire city block might burn down, but if 911 eventually gets the fire department notified and they're able to save one shed, they congratulate the guy for a job well done.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

The Almanac Of Eating Time Averages

I'm standing outside a popular eatery, so popular that everyone wants to eat here. What ever happened to the recession? If everyone can afford to be eating out, can it really be that bad? No one's pinching pennies, everyone's out for a twenty dollar meal.

You get a gigantic crowd and more pressing at the door, it's hard to enjoy your meal. Hold 'em back! I need to binge it down my throat and immediately purge myself from the premises. Lead the cow to its stall. Next! The pony needs his oats. And I'm no one special. The waitresses see me as another random mouth, not a diner. They're going to park my butt somewhere, probably a greased chair, all the better to get me out.

Somewhere in the back, or upstairs, a big brain is watching over the facility and making calculations, like the darkened banker on "Deal or No Deal." Does this guy have girth and plenty of it, or is he a beanpole? How long will it take him to eat? Let's move the big boy to a smaller table, make him less comfortable, maybe he'll get the hint we don't want him lingering till he gets his fill, if ever.

He looks it up in the book, "The Almanac of Eating Time Averages," the PDR of busy restaurants. Most of it you could work out in your head, just out of experience, but money's made at the margins, where precision matters.

If it weren't his concern -- or even when it is -- the rest of the crowd has some obvious consciousness of these matters. They're not looking at their watches just to check the time, but to work out their own calculations and compare them to some innate knowledge of eating time averages.

I too do it, but with compassion. To be fair, most people at the door are resigned to the fact that they should've gotten there earlier ... or later. But still they wait. Whatever it takes depending on the time they have to waste. When I'm at the door, I know I'll eventually make it, especially if it's just me and the Pink Professor; a party of two has the edge over a party of seven.

Of course it depends on how busy it is, and how unruly people can get. Anything could set them off. I can understand the typical crowd, but what if they became a nameless, faceless mob. Then, with lessened restraints, anything could happen. Like an Ox-Bow Incident mob, worse if they had Republican insensibilities. That'd be a different animal. I'd hate to look over and see their unpredictable expressions.

Then what if the crowd became so brazen that they were out checking parking meters and calculating how long other folks were in there. Or checking video checkpoints we'd passed, getting information. They might string everyone up, then put in their order.

Fortunately, I have some data of my own, a work in progress, let's call it "The Almanac of People's Natural Breaking Points," so I'm not at everyone's mercy, but I too have experience....

(We just got our table.)

OK, now that we're in and seated, we will enjoy our meal. An enjoyment that someone somewhere is quantifying even as we speak.

Friday, March 25, 2011

You Can't Pray Here

Note: This didn't really happen. It is a fictional account of an event that did not occur. It was just a thought that came to me.

I thought the library was supposed to be a place of enlightenment, of personal freedom, of the ability to learn and grow and express yourself in your own individual way. But I guess not, I must have been mistaken. Another dream shot down, another ideal disappointed...

Where they got this particular officious librarian -- or helper at the library -- I don't know. The usual library types are meek and mild, not so driven to oppress people. At least I've never heard of it. I've been watching librarians all my life, keeping track of the kinds of personalities the profession attracts. I saw someone filling out a job application at the library one day, and I was thinking, If I was the guy in charge of hiring, I wouldn't need an application, I could spot my potential employees a mile away. Line them up, I can pick out the helpful mice. And I say that with a great deal of affection, because these are my own people.

That is, most of them are! But they got this one guy, like I said, very officious, domineering, apparently thinking the library is his own to do with as he sees fit. He said something about it being a matter of church and state, the wall of separation and all that. He wouldn't allow anyone to cross that divide, the line or wall of separation that is so all important to him.

Whether he was on the lookout for me, or just happened upon me and couldn't help himself, I'd like to think it was the former. My doctor said I have a persecution complex and every once in a while it needs sustenance. I don't know if all that's true. The way I see it, I'm just always thinking, This person could be out to get me, what if he is, how will I respond? I could simply take it, and hope the payoffs of a good martyr complex would come true. But the downside is sometimes you have to suffer in silence for a good several years. And I've led a more or less anonymous life, no one's written any folk songs about me yet. Why they would start now? They probably wouldn't.

Anyway, I was sitting in the public library. The public library. And, yes, I admit it, I had my Bible open, and for a brief period my eyes were closed. I was doing some serious meditation on the nature of the psychic centers and the more overtly spiritual teachings in the Bible of Christ, I admit all that. To me, that's a good thing, and I'm quite willing to testify to it anywhere, that there's a definite good spiritual track and I believe I have the inside track on it. I thought I was well within my rights as a member of a "free" society to do what I wanted in relation to these things, but apparently not.

This was a serious infringement of my rights, that's what I'm contending. The little pud came up to me and asked me to close "that book" and put it away, and said if I couldn't keep my eyes open that he'd have to ask me to leave. He also said he'd be watching me closely to judge compliance, then wished me a good rest of the day. I was literally in shock, and, it's hard to believe but I did immediately comply, putting my Bible in my book bag, then I sat there thinking it over.

"Have a nice day?" Is that what the little pud said to me, after having basically cleaned and gutted me? I sat silently for a little while, looking around to see if anyone else noticed. But no, the guy was quiet enough in scolding me, no one else was aware of what was going on. I was starting to steam a little, starting to smoke and seethe around the edges; I felt my skin moistening, my temperature rising, my sense of rage accelerating, definitely ramping up. I was like a 5 o'clock whistle. Definitely I was in the mood to rebel, because I believe I know my rights.

Well, sure enough, no sooner had I gotten my Bible back out of my book bag and closed my eyes again, here came the little pud around the corner. He must've been watching me from the stacks, knowing I would eventually try to have my own way. Which is true, showing he's not a complete idiot, just an idiot in regards to religious freedom. So there he was again, in my face, spouting off about the separation issues, etc., and saying he was asking me to leave the library and not come back if I had it in mind that I would cross this line again, blah blah blah.

By now I was so hot under the collar that I could've decked him, and he's lucky I didn't. For the most part, I let my words do the talking, arguing, "But you have a public Bible here, so it's a contradiction to say I can't look at my own." And it's true, they do have a Bible, although the rules seem to be unnecessarily strict for accessing it. They have it chained to a stand and devotees have to stand in line even to look at it from a distance. Right to the little pud's face, I averred, "Such things ought not be!" And once I get going there's no stopping me. I said all should be allowed to worship freely, having access to God without being impeded in any way. And of course that is my true opinion. I see no sense at all in religious persecution.

But the little pud couldn't be placated. He was all over me. Because in addition to the Bible and having my eyes closed, I was also listening to an iPod, and, yes, I was rocking a little bit in the chair. To me, you know, you have music right there in your ears, you respond to it, almost like dancing, although in this case it was a more spiritual rocking back and forth. "What's that you're playing on your iPod, some kind of mantra or hymn?" And so on. The little pud wasn't going to let it go. He was strictly in his own little world. So that was it. I packed up my stuff and started for the front door.

Needless to say, I went to the front desk and registered a complaint. But the head librarian was either on vacation, off at a basketball game, at a convention, or on sick leave. She wasn't anywhere to be found. So I'll have to wait for whatever proceedings they have, either to punish the little pud or formally cancel my privileges there.

There was one library helper near the door who asked me what was going on and seemed sympathetic. I tried to explain about the guy being the thought police, etc., and she told me that it's his job to make sure people keep their eyes open or they'll think you're a homeless guy trying to sleep. Which didn't explain the clearly religious prohibitions he had in mind. But I'll leave it there.

Note: I said it at the top, but it bears repeating. None of this really happened. It's just a bitter fantasy I had while reading the Bible, praying, meditating, and listening to a mantra or hymn on my iPod at the library. I said it was a bitter fantasy, since I wouldn't really like it to happen, but there was a certain amount of genuine pleasure to it as well. A library helper walked behind me -- that's all -- so he's the subject of this reverie. Goodbye for now, and remember, don't let anyone trample on your religious rights.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Local Man -- Our Unsung Hero

Being a local man myself, I have an ideal understanding of the conflicts and challenges the local man faces. I also have a great familiarity with the bright, happy times, which the local man also enjoys.

In a way, I feel like I'm all alone in most of this, especially the understanding. I've straddled both worlds, the local places and the bigger, more cosmopolitan places. So I've seen it from every angle, but, as they say, there's no place like home. I've taken up my place here where I was mostly raised, keeping close to the soil.

The little people are all around me. That's my day, seeing little people. At the grocery store, the cafe, in the courthouse, walking down the street. I see John Q. Public going on his anonymous way. Like I said, I'm alone in that, since insofar as I know, I'm the only one keeping an eagle eye out for him. Then again, I'm the guy who wonders to himself why we neglect so much history, such as the waving of corn, the flying of birds, and the breeding of fish, or the passing of clouds. No one's getting all this stuff documented. It's all happening very anonymously. Even the dying of dogs. You don't have to report it.

And so it goes. The world's a funny place, exalting a proud few, whom we call celebrities. They're exalted, then they go about their miserable lives, the same messed up people as the rest of us, yet making front page news. I don't want to mention names, mostly because I don't really know that many celebrities. Elizabeth Taylor just died, so she'd be a good example. How many times have I had to hear about Elizabeth Taylor in my life? She was the cover girl for so many of Grandma's movie magazines back in the day. We kept track of who she was married to and divorced from. And it wasn't just home, but church. That's right. Back in those days, she was held up in church as the consummate Hollywood scandal incarnate, thanks to her marriages and divorces. We definitely learned back then that the Hollywood types weren't very happy.

So they're held up, but the rock solid, salt of the earth, guy at his labors, the local guy, is just a footnote in the pages of history, and of course presented in the aggregate. Which probably is as it should be, since he wouldn't want to face the scrutiny, then have to live up to it by doing foolish things, which we still hear of our Hollywood folks doing. Personally, I don't pay much attention to it. Consequently, I never do good at celebrity trivia, even on Jeopardy. Speaking of Jeopardy, today one of the contestants referred to Alex Trebek as a celebrity. Of course he is one, but it was odd that he didn't demur on that a little, even if he had to pretend, like, "Who? Little old me?" Had he done that, at least it would've been in the form of a question. And the local man would've given him a nice thumb up.

I know all about local men, but there's not always that much to say about them, because they're just not that interesting. Which is why they'll never be a celebrity. You could have an average guy out there, so they could make fun of him, but that doesn't count.

The local man, then, is my unsung hero of the day.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Lovingly Bathing The Pink Professor


In this angelic realm of Heaven, there's some things going on that would really raise eyebrows were they being done on Earth. There's apparently nothing much there to hold people down. If they want to jump on your bones, they do, and there's not much you could do about it even if you wanted, because they do it en masse, with anywhere from 50 to 10,000 angelic beings piling on at a time.

I was going from one palace to another, after a break in the action following the Pink Professor's massive diurnal emissions (reported yesterday); he was in a bliss that was impenetrable, so I wandered the palaces looking for things that were penetrable. There's so much action in this realm it'd make Hugh Hefner blush. Actually a lot more than a faithful guy like me wants to deal with, since I have my monogamous eyes set on only one paramour, the Pink Professor himself. But I'm making allowances, trying not to make him jealous and trying my best not to get jealous. I'm thinking, What happens in Heaven stays in Heaven.

The beautiful thing about the angelic beings up here is they're all at least a million years old, but they look and act like they're something between 18 and 35. Their personal 'Over the Hill' party was hundreds of thousands of years ago, but you'd never know it. I'm just hoping one doesn't suddenly decay in my arms. There I am, huffing and puffing, and look down to a bag of bones and dust, but so far, so good.

I gave the Pink Professor a little time to catch up on his vitality, then headed back over, where everything was again hopping very lively. The angels saw me coming and came over to float me in on an inflatable cloud, saving me something like 50 steps. Only the best! I nodded over at the Pink Professor, still looking like a refugee from dreamland, wet dreamland. Stacked around the edges of the circular room were some of the things he passed yesterday, especially massive quantities of taffy. Glenn Miller's trombone was missing already. They have crime even here! I could kick myself but my leg would go right through my butt, and I'm sure I'm writing for folks who have some appreciation of how painful that can be, especially if you catch it at a bad angle.

I took my throne facing the Pink Professor's throne, with about 25 feet separating us. The youthful male and female bevies of beauties were there. Today's blessed activities centered on laving the Pink Professor, which is another way of saying bathing him. All the preparations, some of which took the better part of two hours, were meticulous, the arranging of the various elements being very important. Lotions, creams, bath salts, soap, cloths, etc., were carefully brought in and set in place.

I turned to one of the guides, who explained to me that the bevies had come from the farthest places in the realm, and that these events had been prophesied for thousands of years. There were some remarkable things I was able to learn. One was these angels aren't just always here, but most of them had to do things to raise money for the trip, including hundreds of bake sales, car washes, and selling magazines. So it was a very big deal. Of course they wanted to do it right. I checked my watch and I'm sure my look of impatience was unwelcome.

Then it was time. A voice that sounded like the notes of a symphony directed the bevies -- now comprised of thousands of angels -- to step forth and bathe the blessed man with sweet water and their tender tears. The lights of the palace were dimmed, but not so much that I couldn't make out the approach of nudity and his eventual unveiling. I always have an eye out for that.

The scene is indescribable but I will try to give it a try. The beauties -- male and female -- were using their hair and hands and really getting into the whole bathing process. The Pink Professor was hard to spot in such a massive scene, but he was obviously right there at the center, at the heart of the action. The fragrance of the various soaps, powders, creams, and other unguents was so overpowering, it reminded me of this one woman's perfume who goes to my church. But whereas hers is simply nauseating, this was sweet to the senses, although I knew it'd be hard afterward to bring my senses back to their senses.

The whole thing went on like that, hour after hour, with more nude bodies appearing, angels floating around the edges looking for a gap big enough to get a foothold, since no one wanted to go through that many bake sales, car washes, and magazine sales without making it worthwhile. I knew today my man belonged to them, and that was OK. If you have to compete with anyone for a guy's affections, it may as well be in Heaven, since that's a huge compliment. I can beat anyone on earth!

I seemed to be witnessing an eternal scene. I wasn't expecting any break. But there was indeed a very serious break. A crash of lightning scattered the heavenly beings far and wide, most nude and now shivering in fear against the wall. An old man, looking every year of his horrendous age, entered the palace, the pavilion. He had a beard the size of a fairly big trash can. And big eyebrows like Yosemite Sam. This guy was so grizzled he wouldn't have been able to get a date even in a place as easy as Heaven. But his ability to strike fear in everyone's hearts appeared unmatched.

The Pink Professor sat in the beautiful tub, now shivering, and thinking maybe he should cover his shame. But the old man -- representing perhaps some ancient moral sense that we thought we'd said good riddance to once and for all -- threw up his hands and forbade any modesty at this point.

The next thing he did, I shall never forget, although I shall also never be able to reconcile it with my sense of mercy, justice, and love. He pulled out a washboard from under his beard and went to the tub, reached in and began a very painful scrubbing of the Pink Professor's sex, mercilessly raking the erstwhile masterful member up and down the washboard's metal ribs. The Pink Professor let out a shriek they had to hear in Hell.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Proceeding From The Pink Professor's Open Zipper


It's very hard for me to believe I'm already up to part 2 in this trilogy, it seems like I just started. And now I'm already halfway through. I'll need to somehow come up with longer trilogies.

Yesterday it had to do with a pillar, representing the sublime palace at which I found the Pink Professor in this particular fantasy. I had to undergo a series of labors in my quest to get there, including a challenging go at "The Magnificent Marble Machine" from the '70s show of the same name. Since then, I took the opportunity to watch part of one of the remaining tapes of this show that exist. It was worse than I remember, but the machine was just as slow as I remember. In yesterday's challenging go at it, believe me, it was a lot faster.

I've already had two digressions today. But let me assure you, these aren't counting against your time on my blog. I will indeed give you the full story of the fantasy I had (and am having) about the Pink Professor's open zipper.

Where we left off yesterday, there was this beautiful abstract garden statue representing a person, even though it's more or less a lump, that became the Pink Professor on his throne. I was dazzled by his radiance. I wondered if I could approach.

But approaching wasn't something he wanted me to do at that moment, for I had the awareness that he wanted me to stand back and see the wonders in store. A throng of devotees was gathered in a semicircle behind me. I was in what I would call the center, looking directly at the Pink Professor. The throng was almost doing the wave, back and forth, but it was more like a wave that a flock of birds might do, in that it was essential movement, not consciously directed like you see at sporting events.

The Pink Professor would lift a hand and the throng would lift, swell, and relax. He would put up both arms and they were ecstatic. He stood and two devotees were so overcome with ecstasy that they gave birth. I took this as a sign of the Pink Professor's continued potency, which, I believe, he's able to maintain, miraculously, without resorting to Cialis or any of the other medications associated with male troubles. I prayed that he wouldn't thrust his hips, lest a second Big Bang get the present universe confused. Everything was that close to the edge.

Next, he retook his throne and pulled a pink coverlet over his lap. Two bevies of beauties -- a male bevy and a female bevy -- entered from the sides, doing a kind of 'Dance of the Seven Veils.' It built to a rather provocative climax, with both bevies lying on the floor, twisting and writhing, then thrusting themselves toward him. I felt a little jealous, knowing he could choose any of these youthful stallions and fillies. But that fear quickly left as he winked at me. Jealousy was the exact wrong response, since this was meant to show how much he preferred me as his consort, with the whole world to choose from. I fingered him back a personal Kornfield Kounty salute.

The bevies exited stage left, and from the opposite direction in came serving men and women with bowls of precious candy and sweets. They proceeded to the throne in beautiful harmony with the bowls as their offering. I was impressed when the Pink Professor took an antibacterial wipe and wiped his hands before reaching into the bowl. Germophobes to the end!

What happened after this was something straight out of the biblical book of Revelation. An emissary from normal earth came in and was in mourning clothes, sackcloth, accompanied by an angel. He asked the angel, "Who is worthy to unzip the Pink Professor's pants?" But none was found worthy among the gathered throngs, and we sat in hushed silence for a half hour. I pulled out my Kindle and read.

Then, finally, the angel pointed a bony finger at me, and proclaimed, "He is worthy!" The silence was broken in a dramatic way as the thunder of a thousand mountains sounded. I stepped forth over what now was a glassy sea, full of eyes, representing the hushed hopes of all creation. With boldness, I pulled away the coverlet, took his zipper thingy between my fingers, looked up and winked at him, and immediately pulled it down, with firmness, until his fly was completely open.

There was such a rush of wind and radiant light that I was pushed back from the throne, but everything was very gentle to me. A second throne rose up from the floor and I was seated directly in view of the Pink Professor.

What followed was a hypnotic sequence that still -- and these memories are only minutes old -- makes me dizzy. It's a good dizzy.

I looked at the gathered throngs as these scenes unfolded. I could see their beautiful bodies through their garments. They were youthful and vibrant, but they became old, then turned to skeletons, then were restored to their original firmness and youth. They smiled, they frowned, they laughed, they cried, some of them were on their backs spewing upward like fountains. Fountains of life covering and nearly drowning them.

They and I watched with amazement as all manner of delectable things flew forth from the Pink Professor's fly. At first it was like a candy store, with sweet sticks of candy poking through and flying forth, all the best flavors, horehound, cherry, root beer, etc.; following were black and red licorice, then an enormous wad of taffy, 40 feet long, enough to feed an army; a candy cane the size of a telephone pole poked out and flew through the room; the biggest Christmas stocking in the world, like you see in convenience stores, pushed out and flew forth to the four corners, teaching everyone the true meaning of Christmas; but I was thoroughly amazed at what popped out next, Glenn Miller's actual trombone, which I'm going to sell on eBay; and finally he shoved out an rainstick the size of a Sequoia. I love rainsticks.

I looked up at the Pink Professor's face. There was a bright star shining out of his forehead, his eyes were like stars, his head was tilted back, he was in a perfect realization of ecstasy. This is the guy I love! I thought to myself, "I've heard of massive orgasms before, but Glenn Miller's trombone?"

Monday, March 21, 2011

The Pink Professor At The End Of My Path


It's spring break and that means being where the boys are. As Connie Francis sang, "Where the boys are someone waits for me." Likewise, I'm sure, for the rest of us looking for our guy at the end of our path.

For me, it's the Pink Professor, the guy I met toward the end of last year at the bikers bar on the edge of town. He serves as the Pink Professor character there, softening up what would otherwise be a very hard crowd. He brings refinement to the coarse atmosphere.

Though we're well on our way -- our relationship blooming all the time -- I can still hardly believe it. I thank my lucky stars all the time. So I'm not taking anything for granted, but I still treat our relationship as though I still have something to win. I've been reading about the spiritual journey (from the writings of the Rosicrucians), and it reminded me of the journey that I feel I'm on ... leading to everlasting bliss with the Pink Professor.

Today's post reflects that. And I guess it's interesting that I said post, since I chose a pillar for today's illustration. In subsequent posts, it will be a zipper and a washboard, for reasons (good or bad) that I will get to when it comes time to write them (I frankly don't remember right now.)

In my romantic Rosicrucian pursuit, there are revealed to me big gates. These are shut, making my way to the Pink Professor very difficult; the only thing that might make it more difficult might be if they were open, since I'd be wondering, Now what do I do? But ... wait! They're opening! Now what do I do?

I've got my eyes closed, picturing all this. There's big pillars to my right and left, and some lions, lawn ornaments, that aren't nearly as scary as they're supposed to be. If they had a couple statues of boys peeing, that'd be more scary, since I'd just as soon not get any bodily fluids on me, at least till the end of my quest.

What's this next? A big maze I have to negotiate, made of corn. I'm stepping through it, eyes closed again, but this time because I know I must trust my intuition. I feel some corn silk hitting my arm. And to think I used to smoke this stuff.

Making it through the maze, I am being dramatically buffeted by some fiery dragons. I hope they don't get too close to the corn or the whole kingdom's going up in smoke! I'm going to keep my eyes open for this challenge. I trust my intuition, but I trust it more in a lifeless corn maze and less with dragons that are all too real. What will I do? I have an idea. I'll run in the middle and draw their attention to me, then, fire spewing forth, I dive a scant second before the blast, and they've incinerated each other!

I go a little further, then I find myself on a gigantic pinball machine. I'm looking around, and, good God, this seems familiar. I've seen this somewhere before -- but where? Oh, you know what? This is the pinball machine from the old game show "The Magnificent Marble Machine," from the '70s, an old favorite of mine! But thankfully it wasn't on that long, because I remember myself feeling stressed that the big old machine, never changing, was going to be old hat in no time. Fortunately, I remember precisely how it went, and I'm able to outmaneuver the big silver ball, which would have crushed me.

My next labor is to face a thousand red-eyed demons, the exact kind my minister, Pastor Wadd, warned me about. On the wall, though, there was a sacred sword, the kind that kills demons, especially in a trained hand like I keep at the end of my arm. I slice them to steaks. Someone in the kingdom's going to have a hell of a barbecue tonight!

Finally, a big gate opens. This is the way to the chambers! I see the radiance of the kingdom. The Pink Professor's in here somewhere! Everything becomes very clear as the radiance fades. There's a throne with a big abstract lawn figure on it, hands on its knees. I see it fading out, then the Pink Professor appearing, then disappearing, then appearing more distinctly.

It's like a big whammy to me! I'm in love, but can I approach?

Next: The Zipper!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

What You Can Expect When You Visit My Blog

I was raised to always be welcoming of company to our home. I had plenty of experience with it, because there was a time when visiting folks was very common, sometime before the "Me Decade" of the '80s changed everything and everyone started staying home. And of course it wasn't just selfishness that did it in, but everyone was suddenly afraid of getting AIDS, and so the family suffered. (Anyone else remember Ayds, the weight-reducing candy, that was ruined thanks to its name being pronounced the same? Fortunately, Spam has been resilient.)

But just because everything changed doesn't mean I forgot the lessons of those years; I'm still the same gregarious family man, still open to folks stopping by and "sitting a spell." And I carry that spirit over to my blog, where everyone is welcome, regardless of race, creed, color, sexual orientation, height, weight, age, glasses orientation, clean ears or not, Friends of the Library or not, dumpster divers, dump pickers, pea pickers, transsexuals, people who go to R-rated movies, Unitarians, hippies, thieves, hiccuppers, Goodwill employees, lifeguards, prophylactic vendor owners, blues fans, Pee Wee Herman, hitchhikers, pagans, bellyachers, vegans, butchers, elephant trainers, lion tamers, railroad dicks, graffiti artists, starving artists, film noir fans, people with serious BO, and derelicts. I guess there's only one exception to who's welcome: I'd prefer no Republicans. Unless they're transsexuals, Unitarians, blues fans, railroad dicks, and all the rest.

I kid ... of course ... that's what I do. If you're going to hiccup, it should be mixed in with a belly laugh.

But, no, seriously, everyone's welcome, and I want you to know what you can expect if you visit my blog. You can expect that you will be treated as an honored guest. Because in some sense that's exactly what you are. I don't get that many visitors here, so I have to appreciate the slim pickens that somehow make their way here. Guys like me (beggars) can't afford to be choosers. I try my best. Every other post has the word "sex" in it somewhere so I can be at the top of Google listings, but it doesn't do much good. They're on to me that I don't allow any blue material here. So I have no choice but to keep my quality high, hoping against hope, as it's turned out, that I'll create such a buzz that I'll become viral.

So what does it mean to be an honored guest? For me, it means you get the keys of the kingdom. Whatsoever you bind in heaven is loosed here. Anyone you forgive, I also forgive, withholding never a jot or tittle. Tittle's an actual word, too, it's nothing I made up to refer to little you-know-whats. I'm very gracious to my guests. If you have any good ideas you want me to write about, and are willing to sign away all your rights, including movie treatments, just let me know. I actually have plenty of ideas, as should be obvious, but it wouldn't hurt to cash in on a few that didn't cause me any personal mental strain.

An honored guest has certain rights, and I'm here to see that they get them. Of course I still need to have security, that shouldn't be an issue, and I probably should have the right to define exactly what the parameters of the security should be, since I'm the one seeking it. So, to the extent that all that's a given, if I have a few hidden cameras, a few hidden microphones, the ability to turn your webcam on and off at will, that's all something allowable. If you're not doing anything wrong, then you have no reason to worry about it. But I need to know what my readers are doing all the time. Because they might investigate me too, if somehow we're connected by you visiting my site. I need plenty of evidence that I had nothing to do with it, and no matter what I saw on your computer, I need to be able to swear that I received no illicit gratification from it in any manner of speaking.

To conclude, I'm happy that you're here, that you've visited my site. The average stay time at my blog being something under 30 seconds, I'd like to invite you to help me extend that. I keep getting the impression that people hitting my "sex" links are disappointed when they get here. And I aim to please. I'm just not that into other people's perversions. But I'm not calling you a pervert. You're my honored guest.

Note: Just for the historical record, here's my original notes on what this blog post would be. How do you think I did sticking to it?

several paragraphs of "honored guest"

welcoming, pampering, making at home, careful not to offend.

Then one incongruous paragraph of making paranoid, watching you at all times, triggering the camera on your laptop, always on the lookout for something scandalous. Biting hand.

Then a last paragraph of kindness, welcome, making feel at home.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

The Guidance Counselor Goes Rogue

I've written before of my undying disdain for guidance counselors (Link 1 and Link 2).

The idiot we had at my school ruined it for all the others, unless, as I suspect, the others are all idiots, too. After all, how much intelligence do you need to send kids home with the counsel to think over their future? It might be nice if you gave them a few pointers, you know, guidance and counsel. It's kind of like being a soda jerk, if you're not jerking sodas, what are you doing? You can tell I'm mad, that's when I use the italics.

I remember sitting in my idiot guidance counselor's office for some reason, like several times. It was kind of like a place you sent kids when you didn't want them disturbed, because no one ignores you like a guidance counselor. I can't believe I'm still mad about this guy 40 years later, but hey... If anyone deserves my disdain, it'd have to be him.

My above links on this idiot are from 2009 and 2010, respectively, and now it's 2011, so maybe I'll make it an annual thing. One day every year to dump on this idiotic creep from my childhood. I should find out where they buried him, assuming he's now physically dead in addition to being mentally dead. It might be well worth a trip to his burial site, of course after having visited every strong coffee shop in town and filled my bladder with the biggest bladder-busting fill of coffee there's ever been. I'll leave it to your imagination where I'd relieve myself, but I'll give you a clue: It wouldn't be an ordinary toilet.

You know, when he told me to go home and think about my future, I wish I would've had the bright idea, Hey, why don't I be a guidance counselor? He probably had the matchbook somewhere and I could've gotten the college's address. Then I'd show up and blow the whistle on the whole stinking place, a guidance counselor mill that's been putting out mongrels instead of professionals. Give 'em their shots and send 'em out to an unsuspecting school. Next thing you know, everyone's aptitude stinks. You had aptitude all your life, but as soon as the mongrel shows up, you're a dullard.

I'm not a dullard. Good grief, I've had some smart moments in my life. Look, I know how to put sentences together. And it's not because I'm just a run-on talking guy. There's such a thing as the gift of gab ... and there's such thing the curse of gab. I don't have either one, but if something needs to be said, I've got the mouth and the brain to say it. I don't know what the guidance counselor had on his mind. I'd love to ask him, but I'll never get the opportunity, because hopefully he's dead. And where he went, I don't plan to go. Naturally I'm talking about Hell. And that'd be a drawback to pissing on his grave, since I don't want to douse any flames that might currently be licking him.

I really should look up the scourge. I seriously don't know if he's still around. If he's still around, I could show up at his house and say, "Well, the future's here. I've been doing a lot of thinking." Of course he'd look befuddled, like Who's this guy? Always the one for individual attention, huh? Can't remember me?

In all fairness to him, and I said something like this in 2009 or 2010, one of the links, and as a contradiction to what I said before about guidance counselor mills, no one really goes into guidance counseling. A teacher-type person shows up at a school. They give him a contract and if they notice he didn't read the small print, they slip in the additional paper where he's surreptitiously designated the school's new guidance counselor. By the time he realizes what he's done, the ink's dry, and he's legally bound to it. He looks around the room for help, but all of them are patting each others' backs and laughing, "Too late, sap."

But then, he goes and reads up on the job. How hard could it be? You could easily schedule each kid in school to come to your office for five minutes. That'd give the appearance that you were doing something. Just put them off as best you can. What difference does it make? A high school kid doesn't know the whole thing's a scam. And by the time they graduate, it's too late for them to do anything about it. Maybe a truck will run over the kid and no one will be the wiser...

Happy Rogue Guidance Counselor Day, 2011. See you in 2012! I'll try to fit it in before the world ends.

UPDATE: Guess what, I googled my guidance counselor and he did die, a few years ago. They cremated him, so he got a jump start on the flames. The obit mentioned he was a guidance counselor. No mention of the human wreckage he left behind.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Losing Your View Of The Lake

This is based on a true story, being the first, then having diminishing returns after having been the pioneers.

They were the first in the neighborhood. It wasn't even a neighborhood, since they were the only ones. It was the country, outside the city limits, off the west side of the lake.

What a nice view they had of the lake. They could see the sun coming up every morning, the bright light shimmering, rippling on the waves.

After a while, the surrounding land was divided into lots and sold, and in came a few builders, putting a house here and there. Of course it was still very spotty, and the view was still excellent. But then another, and another, and another. This house over here blocked part of the view, then a few houses closer to the lake blocked it a little more, but for the most part, they still had a view of the lake.

But those were some boom times for building, with another few houses going up, and trees getting bigger all the time. They could just make out the lake by looking between this house and that one.

It continued like that, with new houses filling in the blanks. After a while, the roads were lined with houses, and the pioneers' house up the way didn't have a view at all. Just streets, houses, and trees. You wouldn't even know there was a lake in the area.

Finally, in their old age, their pet bird Petey got out of his cage, flew over and was on one of the easy chairs. One of them -- either the husband or wife* -- sat on him and killed him. A little after that, they went into a nursing home, and eventually both died.

*OK, it was the wife.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

The St. Patrick's Day Massacre

It's been a long day. I've been spending some very anxious hours at the hospital. I must look a fright. I'm looking down at my St. Patrick's Day clothes, a green shirt, a green tie, and a green necklace. There's blood spattered everywhere. I also had a green spangly cardboard/felt hat, lost at some point in the melee. It was probably crushed, trodden underfoot in the stampede to escape, in everyone's mad dash for cover.

To the survivors -- those of us lucky enough to survive -- what happened to our hats and other holiday accoutrements is the least of our worries. We'll just start over next year, getting the things necessary for the holiday a couple days in advance. As for this year, we're more worried about our loved ones, those who were trapped in the crossfire and killed or wounded.

It was a wild, terrible scene, something I never imagined in my worst nightmare. It started out as normal -- the St. Patrick's Day parade. We were there at the curb along the main street, watching the parade just like a thousand other people. Miss Teen America for the Tri-County Region was passing by on the back of an open-top Mustang. I'll never forget it, how she was waving like normal, but a second later it was like she was waving in slow motion, with a horrified look replacing her beautiful smile, and her crown clattering unceremoniously to the pavement when the driver hit the gas.

Everything went crazy, like what might happen in some half-baked fantasy bantered about by guys around a campfire, but this was all too real, something I still can't believe. But it happened. Rival music store gangs, who obviously have had some bad behind-the-scenes history leading up to this day, literally blew everyone away in a horrific shootout, a terrible shootout. I'd rate it a 9 on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the most horrific shootout there's ever been.

And to think we welcome musicians to our parades! That might change! We expect they'll pass by peacefully, blowing their horns, pounding their drums, etc., even working their violins in a beautiful way. We don't expect them to viciously turn on us while taking out their frustrations on one another. But that's the way it happened, their best intentions notwithstanding, the desire only to kill one another. Everything went horribly awry.

I heard the police at the hospital talking about them: The One Note Gang, whose guns went "Tat tat tat tat," like that, constant; The Chords Gang, firing shells that formed patterns of sound with many 7ths thrown in; and The Symphony Gang, issuing staccato flurries of rounds like Beethoven's 5th. What precisely ignited this musical apocalypse, we don't know yet, but obviously there was a sour note somewhere.

I'll never forget the horror of those first dreadful moments, horses scattering, crapping everywhere. Teenage shovelers were hiding behind their blades. Ambulances descended from the hills like bees from their hives, giving everyone emergency shots and asking for our insurance cards.

Since then, here at the hospital, I've been watching their triage measures, probably instituted and practiced in dry runs, but this was the real deal. They were looking for the worst cases and sending them to the beginning of the line. It's demanding work, but with the vast numbers of injured, they had to work fast, cauterizing blood vessels that were pierced by unforgiving bullets. As is typical in such wounds, the entry of the bullets was easy, but they can be very hard to excise.

I mentioned the police. They've been crawling all over the place, crawling in packs, asking questions of anyone who's not in shock. I told them my story, about the beauty queen, and what I could make out of the music gangs, who took their stand and sought to even the score.

I myself -- thank God on high -- was not injured. But I'm at the hospital because a friend of mine was mowed down. A doctor came in and I gave him what information I could, referring to a card in his wallet for his insurance information. These guys are always full of friendly small talk in the hospital, like they're your best friend, but just wait for the bill and the collection agency, and suddenly there's no more Dr. Nice Guy.

These are dispatches from the front lines, I'm sorry if I sound a little spacey. It's not everyday that a holiday is so dramatically ruined. And it's not like having your Christmas tree fall over, even though that would be bad enough. This was a life or death situation for all of us, and to get our thoughts back in order is going to take both counseling, meds, and diligent efforts on all of our parts. I'd rather have a July 4th explosion any day -- anything but another St. Patrick's Day massacre.

Next year I'm going to stay home -- huddling together with friends and family, and thank my lucky charms that I'm still alive. And I'll bet that goes double for my injured friends.

UPDATE: I wanted to mention two other things that I just remembered. 1) There were some frat boys having hospital bed races in the hallway. But the families of the injured went out and asked them to keep it down, in honor of the dead and dying. 2) Five collectable Corvettes were wrecked in the fracas, meaning a busy time for insurance agents tomorrow.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Cold Case -- The Dollar I Found

Here's another entry from my file, "Cold Case -- The Trivial Stuff." This one is so cold it might be called "The Case of the Cold Cash," but to me that doesn't really describe what happened. I want to keep it closer to a descriptive title, if for no other reason than to distinguish it from other cold cases that may come up involving money. So I'll call it "The Case of the Found Dollar."

This one goes way back. Still, I think of it maybe once a year, sometimes more. This week I started thinking about it again because someone told me she found $5 in one of the self-serve checkout stands at the grocery store. In fact, she said, she's always finding money, which tempts me to stalk her. Because I could always use some "found money," if for no other reason than to spend it on things I want.

That's what I did with the original dollar at the center of this case. I probably should set the scene. If you can picture me as around 12 years old, estimating, walking through a variety store, you'll have the scene. The year was sometime in the '60s, the place at particular store at the town's shopping center that isn't there anymore. For some reason I can't remember, they went out of business. In the same space since then has been other stores.

One day, as I was shopping without any money, looking at the toys and things in that area, I looked down, my eye was drawn down, and I saw a dollar bill in the aisle. My immediate impulse, which I acted on, was to reach down and pick it up and keep it for myself. Well, I didn't keep it long, because I bought some things right then and there that I suddenly couldn't live without, I believe including one or more of the old balsam wood airplanes we used to play with. Remember, this was back with a dollar was worth something. If you're not old enough to remember that a dollar used to be worth something, ask an older person. People were paid a dollar an hour back then.

Was I happy with this find? Yes, I seem to recall I was very happy. But looking back on it now, I wonder, should I have done the right thing and sought out the original owner? Could I even now make restitution to the person? I could, but this is obviously a cold case; there's no telling who the owner could be, whether he or she missed it, and whether it's really made any difference all these years that it was lost. Probably not.

After all, how many dollars have every one of us wasted over the years, and we haven't been exactly sunk, or financially embarrassed in any way? I see people always dropping several dollars on lottery tickets and it doesn't seem to bother them. Or families taking their little hellions into the convenience store and coming out with $30 worth of junk food, pork rinds, licorice packs, 64 oz. drinks, king size candy bars, $3 ice cream bars, etc. They don't seem to care. But if I'm the dad, I take them all to the grocery store and get them one thing, and one thing only, the little brats.

OK, it's a case in the cold case file, meaning I need to sketch out some theories about what could be done if someone wanted to solve the case and find the original owner. The store itself wouldn't be any help, since it's not there anymore. And this was back before there were video cameras everywhere, so to find a tape of the incident, and back it up to see the original person drop it, would be impossible. Plus, even if there were a tape, have you ever seen surveillance tapes on current TV shows? You have a guy robbing a liquor store, the camera's right in his face, and you can't make out a single feature. Try to imagine what the cameras of the '60s would have been like! A sketch artist sitting up in the store's security booth would do a better job, even if he wasn't able to capture all the action.

I could probably put an ad in the paper, asking for anyone who might remember losing a dollar at the time in that particular store, to get ahold of me. Then, if they wanted, I could reimburse them and everyone would be happy. But I'm doubtful, very doubtful, that the person would even be alive after all these years. On the other hand, I'm still alive, so it can't be excluded entirely. It might have been another kid, since, as I said, the dollar was found in the general area of the toy section.

I could contact the police and see if they have any records from that time frame, and see if they'd mind it very much going through them to see if anyone reported a missing dollar. Their mission being to protect and serve, I'd guess they'd be happy to look through the archives, even if it took days or weeks, to see if there was any way of getting this resolved.

My counsel to anyone reading this would be, If you find money, make notes about the circumstances, check everything, get down every angle. Because you never know, someday you might feel like making restitution. And if so, it will go much better for you if you have this kind of information. Without it, you'll be in the same straits I'm in right now, wanting to do the right thing but just not knowing how.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Does This Make Sense?

I'm up and having a great morning, getting back into the things that do me most good. It's weird, I started this post last night, then didn't have the time to finish it, and now I'm getting back to it with an entirely different mindset. Does this make sense?

It makes sense to me, but of course I have the inside track on my own thoughts. Which started last night, by the way, with that very question, "Does this make sense?" I put it out there; this is no concoction of this morning. This is still last night's baggage, if baggage is the right word. It's a holdover, a carryover, a remnant of the previous day, with its own new meaning for today. Does this make sense?

Right now, I'm thinking micro and macro. Does this make sense? I keep thinking I'm captain of my own ship, all that, that the ordinary thinking center, as typically perceived (at least according to my own experience), is in charge. Then events, sometimes events, happen to shake that confidence. More than events, it's my own inner shifting that reminds me, when I'm clear enough to see it, that all is not as I pictured. Does this make sense? With the micro in this case being me and my abilities and/or inabilities. The bottom line being, if I haven't got actual control over the micro, what hope is there for the macro? Does this make sense?

It makes sense right this moment, thanks to some renewed clarity; as I said, it's a great morning. And that's the way I'd like to stay, if only...

It takes some push on my part to make it happen, insofar as I have any control whatsoever, and I believe I do. That makes sense. It really could be that I'm being blown around like a cork on the sea and therefore have little say over these matters; I can't exclude that possibility. But the way it feels -- I really allow for the possibility of a modified, limited captain of my own ship role -- is that I do have some say-so in my own psychology and experience. Does this make sense?

Just to push it a bit, how can any of it really make sense if I don't even know the ground on which I seem to stand? Since I allow for so many unknowns, making sense of things is something that seems like it will necessarily have to come later, not now. Does this make sense?

UPDATE: There are a lot of addenda I'm tempted to write to the foregoing. But they'd just get me in deeper. Does this make sense?

Monday, March 14, 2011

Save Sex Till Your Retirement Years

First, let me just say, I'm not a fool. I know when I advocate saving sex until your retirement years there's going to be very few people who'll listen. And so it'll go on, the ill-advised and harmful coupling of unthinking people caught up in the lust of the moment.

Believe me, I know how it goes. You're young, and perhaps you're at the peak of your sexual potency, and you cannot be held back, cannot be tamed. The last thing you're likely to do is listen to an old guy like me -- what would I know? -- when I tell you something that goes against every one of your instincts, that you'll enjoy sex more and you'll appreciate it more if you wait ... not until marriage, but until your retirement years.

There's nothing wrong with getting married. If you fall in love, go for it. But you should know that the biggest draw for people to one another are the more superficial things of appearance and selfish satisfaction. First, we're not looking at the heart of the other person, but at the external things; it's purely physical, body parts. Then we're seeking selfish satisfaction, what it can do for me, me, me, with no regard for the pleasure -- physical, emotional, or spiritual -- of the other person. But what if you were able to save those physical yearnings and the consummation for 40 or 50 years? Can't you see how it would be that much more pleasurable, as each of you has known each other through and through for so many decades?

Of course it'll be hard, but if you can do it, your golden years will be so much greater! It's just getting there that's the trouble. Because you're young, perhaps you marry when you're around 20, you're already past your peak, which came in the third or fourth week after your 18th birthday. You're completely anxious that you're losing it, so you want so desperately to start getting it on. Add in the fact that you're in bed together every night, and it's a situation of sights, smells, one another breathing, etc., not to mention your raging hormones urging you, tempting you, with everything they got that you must do it -- I'll repeat that, you must do it! But do you really?

If you catch yourself in time, you will start to think of the years ahead. Maybe you will think way ahead, to the time you turn 60 or 65. It's only 40-45 years away, which in terms of galactic time, measured in billions of years, is essentially nothing, a blink of the eye. You can do it! So you're 20 and you restrain yourself. If so, you've overcome the biggest hurdle. Because from there it's just a matter of constant denial; if you did it once, you do it again, then again, then again. At long last, you're 30. You're still looking good, your color's good, because you've maintained your sexual vitality intact. You're working out strenuously; you feel you have no choice. Then you're 40. Your midlife crisis is just a blip because you've denied yourself all your life.

Then 50, see how fast time is going when you keep it uncomplicated? But it's actually going to be the years between 50-60 that are the worst. One, you're having real doubts whether this was a good idea. Everyone else has kids and grandkids. But look at the additional problems they have too. Every one of those kids will cost them a million dollars in their lives. Two, you'll start thinking your looks aren't so good, with the wrinkles, losing your hair, and an assortment of other diseases and conditions that come with age. You'll start thinking, maybe we should've done it when the doing was good. But hold on, that's a deception! Because, remember, you aren't looking for superficial external thrills. Plus, it's too late now, you may as well hold on...

Finally, you turn 60, and now it's time to start thinking how it's going to be. Around 61-65, these are great years to start exploring the sex act. Find a good manual and memorize the location of things on the human body. These will vary from the man to the woman. In general, though, you'll want to be familiar with the area below the waist yet above the feet. Or to narrow it further, the area of the crotch.

OK, the time has come. You've officially retired, now it's time to let nature have its way.

I don't want to get too graphic about what this will entail, lest it tempt any young people. But just to keep it basic, you will discover things with your partner -- sensations -- you never dreamed existed. Nature is kind. When you come together, just let nature be your guide, although I would counsel keeping the manual close by your bedside, just in case you don't know how build and finish. I can briefly speak to that: You shouldn't have too much trouble, if you've faithfully taken your pills and started before 7 p.m.

Among the sensations you will experience will be the satisfaction that you did wait-- no matter how hard it was -- and now you're able to love and enjoy your partner, respecting one another, and knowing that it's not selfishness and the lust of the flesh, but the coming together of two spirits who've shared the best and worst the years brought. Finally, you're able to give and yield your all.