Posts Tagged ‘relationships’

Going Against the Grain

June 19, 2019

Marsha wept as she rhetorically asked John where they went wrong with their son Gore. Gore seems like a crazy Goth name to give to their son at the time but actually he was named after Al Gore. Around the time of the 2000 elections, Marsha stopped dressing like Siouxie from Siouxie and the Banchees. She made John start dressing like a man who could make money instead of a over grown kid in ripped jeans and offensive Punk shirts from their high school days.

 

Marsha was a stay at home mom and the head of the PTO while John became a realtor. They had a swell home and every five years, they bought one that was even bigger and more expensive. They raised Gore to respect people of all colors and to not make fun of fat children or over the top effeminate men, not torture small animals ect… Marsha was way ahead of her time back in the early 2000’s. She explained that we are all equal in god’s eyes even though Marsha decided that there was no god. Marsha was raised Catholic but rebelled in high school. It was about the time she wore Doc Marten boots with her Catholic school skirt, died her hair jet-black and wore black lipstick. John met Marsha at a Black Flag show and fell madly in love with her. They had so much in common. They hated their parents, society, Ronald Reagan, Michael Jackson and Madonna. They were against anything that their post World War II parents were for but over time like most Americans- they had to get on board, become a cog in the wheel of the dynamo that is these United States.

Gore was against everything that his parents were for too. John and Marsha were Chicago Cubs fans and Gore liked the White Sox. John and Marsha liked their Punk Music from the 1980’s and Gore liked Country. John and Marsha got paunchy and sedentary and Gore ate healthy as a teenager and lifted weights until he was the biggest and strongest guy in the school. Gore wrestled, played football and ice hockey. John and Marsh had been anti-jock back in the day.

Gore had a graduation party with friends that were going off to the military or college. They hunted and owned rifles. They drove American cars and trucks. They all seemed more at home in Nebraska than suburban Chicago. Gore took off his shirt before jumping in the family pool. On his back was a tattoo the length of his back that had Donald Trump making the “OK” sign with a circle between the thumb and index finger. Trump is wearing a suit with a red tie and is winking. It read- Donald Trump 45th president of the United States of America. Made America great again.

 

Marsha was horrified. Her girlfriends from something called the “Fight Club”, a group of moms angry about the election and their husbands were in attendance. The members of the fight club sat drinking wine and eating chips with dip. They had been talking about mundane things until they could not help noticing Gore looking like an underwear model with his shirt off. He was a like a Greek statue with a six pack, strong arms and chest. What was tattooed to his back sent them heading for the exit. The moms protested the president by wearing cat hats downtown. They had lawn signs that said things like love is love and no human is illegal and science is real. There was no way they were staying any longer at the party.  Marsha was horrified and filled with anxiety of what might happen next.

Sitting in a lawn chair with a Fedora hat on, holding a beer was an old man. It was the father of Martha. The moms all left close to suddenly and said nothing to Martha other than they needed to go. Martha worried that one of them might go on an open forum of suburban moms and let everyone know that her son was a pariah, a xenophobe, homophobe, misogynistic racist, a Trump loving… Republican. Marsha was tearing eyed as boys and girls jumped into the pool listening to hillbilly music. Her father laughed. She turned to him and asked what possibly could be funny.

“Oh I was just thinking about when you brought John over for Christmas dinner way back when. He had a safety pin through his face and his Mohawk was orange. He wore a t shirt with cut off sleeves… I’ll never forget that shirt. It said Killing Joke and underneath it was the pope on a German military truck being given a Nazi salute by German soldiers on both sides. My mom, being a woman who never missed mass, cried for a month when John Kennedy was killed. She got up and left. She couldn’t believe that I let you date that guy. She told me that I had to stop you. How likely was that? Well you married him.”

“And what is so funny to you exactly? That my friends are going to make me wear a scarlet letter by posting shit on the internet?”

“Come now… You can’t control your kids entirely. They go against the grain… I think you should get a tattoo of Bernie Sanders shrugging his shoulders with the caption- What Hath God Wrought.”

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From Canada to England

June 5, 2019

Tell my secretary to call Pierre. Tell her that I am going up there. I want to be courtside like Jack Nicholson to watch some hoops and rip the president.

 

“I want to apologize for everything…”

Pierre stopped Barack

as the woman began to sing, Oh Canada for the first time at an NBA final.

“Our people know all the words be it French or English.”

 

Speaking of English- Across the pond, carrying tariffs like a well armed sheriff.

“I like what you’ve done with this place, your majesty… You want to see a real palace? Come visit me… Nah, not that place in DC.”

 

The people on the streets stressed with the thought of Brexit. The British Trump looks poised to fix it. The mayor and various MP’s joined in with protest of the modern anxiety of this right winged Wehrmacht rolling across Europe from over seas.

 

Somewhere today on a beach far way, old men remember a truly hard day. They secured freedom and democracy. Nobody thinks to ask the elderly what they think of where we were and where we are today. And maybe it will always be that way.

Your Expiration Date

May 22, 2019

Picture that you knew the day you would die. Think of it as being born with an expiration date. The young ones who pass as young children would get smothered during their short time on earth and those who knew they wouldn’t go on until age 90, would live reckless. Nobody would have to ponder how much time they had left. They would know.

Spencer married at an early age and had children early because his parents were told that he would die 2-8-91. He had two small children and had even discussed with his single brother that he would eventually marry his hot wife and raise Spencer’s children as his own. They had a party for Spencer back in 1991 when he was 24 years old a few days before his expiration date and then nothing happened. There was no car accident, no heart attack, no random gun shooting or nothing. He reasoned that maybe something got screwed up on the computer. These things do happen, you know.

Spencer went on for years thinking that everyday was probably the last and then one day when he was drunk and reading Sartre. Spencer’s wife had taken off with the kid’s basketball coach and he was alone. Spencer started to think that there was some sort of a mistake and the date of his death was probably going to be 8-2-19 and that all the numbers had been scrambled. Spencer was pretty sure that the date is coming and with it being late May of 2019, he had to get some things done and cleared up before cashing in or out.

All those years of anguish and anticipation of the inevitable really prevented him from really living. Spencer bought a motorcycle, joined Internet dating sites, he travelled the country watching sporting events and talking to random people in bars about really deep shit. He got on Facebook and found that girl that he secretly pined for in high school. She looked like the lead singer from the band Bow Wow Wow and liked surfer-looking guys with Van Shoes and OP shorts. They had long stringy hair and liked to skateboard and surf. Her name was Melissa and she was Filipino and she was so pretty that it was hard for a pimple faced Spencer to ever get the nerve up to approach her, to talk to her, to ask her to go to the movies, to be his girlfriend. Spencer had gotten himself in the best shape of his life even though he was pretty sure that the end was coming in August. He reasoned that the grass would be cut and the house immaculate on the day the house gets repossessed.   Spencer hired a detective to find out as much as he could about this girl that was trapped in his head from back in 1985. Here is what he found out- she married three times, had six children, is a big time gambler in Las Vegas and lives in an apartment in North Hollywood, California.

Spencer got off of his motorcycle clad in leather like Mad Max, holding a bouquet of roses. Sitting in a lawn chair of the kidney shaped pool that belonged to the apartment building was Melissa. She was not the thin thing that he remembered but Spencer didn’t see that. He saw the beautiful face that he fell in love with as a teenager. She was looking at her I-Phone with a furrowed brow when Spencer’s shadow cast over her. She looked up and could not make out the figure through the sun. Spencer presented the flowers and got down on one knee like a knight with his helmet on his knee.

“Time is short but there is still time and for my whole life, I’ve wanted to be with you… I won’t leave here today without you.”

Melissa gathered up a few small things and got on the back of the motorcycle. There were a few young Mexican children playing in the parking lot. Melissa tossed the bouquet to a group of young girls and they drove off towards Las Vegas listening to a song by Bow Wow Wow called Do You Wanna Hold Me.

Do you wanna hold me, hold me tight
And I cry all night, there’s only one solution to this life
There’s someone there to tell me what it’s like
Do you wanna hold me, oh yeah, do you wanna hold me, oh yeah
Do you wanna hold me, hold me there.

A Letter to Unwanted House Guests

May 14, 2019

I would be remiss if I let you walk away and not say something to you. When I was sixteen years old, I ran away from home and went to live with poor people on public aid that were willing to take me in. To show my gratitude, I helped clean the house and do chores like all the other natural children of the house. Even at that age, I thought it was exceptional that people with very little, were willing to include me in their lives. With that said, when your daughter came to me to ask for a $500.00 advance to help pay for the rent at a motel flop house after you were evicted from your apartment, I did for you what someone once did for me. I let you move into my home.

 

Being your daughter’s boss in a small restaurant and bar, I blurred personal and professional. I spoke with her often about social issues based on the news of the day. I was asked more than once if I felt any guilt for slavery or white privilege. It was a bit sassy for a young woman of 19 years of age to so brazenly tell me that white people are the devil but especially white men. I should have never gotten involved in hindsight. For my generosity, I never received even so much as a thank you from you or your daughter. Your daughter telling me that her last day working for me will be tied to her last day living in the apartment above my restaurant- my home. I had no choice upon hearing that except to tell her and you to get out of my place immediately.

 

You both are devoid of empathy but picture this- I did hospice at my parent’s home for my mom for a month. She died on a Monday and on a Thursday, my girlfriend came in unexpectedly and went through my place like the Gestapo and found that Anne Frank and her mother had been hiding in a bedroom together, looking at their phones eating Popeye’s Chicken in bed. I never got a kind word from either of you for sharing my place with you. Now as your daughter may have told you, I am not the most liberal minded person in the world but I did something so blindly liberal that you may have mistook at face value human to human generosity with some sort of white guilt. I have none of that shit. Possibly you never got around to thanking me because you felt you were owed this in some sort of way. Maybe that’s racist of me to come to that conclusion. Maybe you’re just ignorant and ungrateful people who are incapable of understanding that someone did you a big time favor by taking you in. After all, everything today is racist, misogynistic, xenophobic, homophobic and if you are white, you have to be willing to go through some sort of truth and reconciliation purging session to cleanse one’s self of privilege. I can tell you that if your daughter thinks she can be surly and judgmental with people that help her, she will get a go fuck yourself response from most people. White or otherwise. My fuck you moment came when I texted both of you to know when she was coming to work on a really busy night. The response- I will be late. The question- how late? The answer- we’re not close. The reply-I didn’t ask you where, I asked you when. Her reply- don’t be rude. Don’t be rude. Don’t be rude is what the 19 year old girl who has been cloistered up in my apartment for free with her mother and says to me when she will be 90 minutes late for work because she was witnessing a friend take prom pictures. That was the limit for me. This was after the death of my mother and the discovery by my girlfriend that you had been shacked up in my apartment. I lost my mom, my girlfriend and then was told by my star employee that when she finds a place to live, she’s quitting.

 

In conclusion, I do not want you to think that this is a racial thing. I was married to a black woman and have a child who is about as black as our ex-president. It might be that black button that every white person presses when pressed about whether they are racially cool. I have a black friend. I married a black woman and so on. I have to sort out in my head if the things that transpired were things that could have happened by any obliviously ungrateful people regardless of the color of their skin or if this goes hand in glove of many with the stereotypes that exist out there. Maybe I will never know. I do know that your daughter is destined to be living with her daughter one day off of the generosity of some fool if she does not wake up and find more ambition than watching mindless shit on her phone all day and learns to work hard. Youth is transitory. I don’t think I need to tell you that.

She’s Leaving Home

April 11, 2019

The two men sat in the dark room with symphonic music playing. Lying in the bed with the white noise of oxygen being pumped into their mother’s nose.

“I think they fucked this whole thing up… If she can’t swallow any longer than how the fuck did she eat yogurt and drink water?” Asked Wade.

“There’s no way of knowing if it’s going into her lungs or stomach…” said Jimmy.

Jimmy is Wade’s son but was adopted by Wade’s mother while he was in Vietnam and so Laurie was the mom of both men. Wade was adamant that his mother was Jimmy’s grandmother and referred to her as such. Jimmy, tired and stressed over standing watch over a dying woman snapped at his dad and brother.

“Look… When someone adopts you, that person becomes your parent. You and my real mom gave me to her and so that makes her my mother too… Why don’t we just call her Laurie? That way I don’t have to hear you call her grandma. She’s not your grandmother and she’s not mine either.”

Back in the old days when Jimmy was a boy, Laurie would make Jimmy spend time with Wade. Wade, a Vietnam Veteran affected by Agent Orange, had a short attention span, problems with anger and an inability to hold a job. Wade never had to ever take care of another human in his life until now with his mother doing hospice. Laurie was a tough woman who fought cancer several times and won. Wade was a man who was burned over 65% of his body in a house fire and lived. Jimmy had a high threshold for stress.

“Wade… Do you remember the guy you shot in the foot?”

“Oh yeah… That fucking guy…”

The man’s name was Gene and he was a drunk Marine who was sitting in the backyard of a drunk Army/infantry veteran. Gene called Wade a pussy and told him he was too much a pussy to shoot anyone. Wade took a sip of his beer, pulled out a handgun and put it to the foot of his drinking buddy and pulled the trigger.

“Whatever happened to that guy?”

“He was as nuts as Mr. Peanuts. They put his ass in a mental institution. I don’t know if he’s dead or alive.

Wade yelled to his hard of hearing mother who was lying in bed holding a stuffed animal, staring straight ahead. He took a sponge on a stick and tried to jam water into her mouth. Lodged in the corner was a ball of yogurt that was being stored not swallowed.

“Looks like Laurie is saving that yogurt for dessert later,” said Jimmy.

Both men quietly thought about the days when she was younger, pretty and vibrant. Laurie was a bundle of energy at all times and could never do enough for her boys. Wade looked at Jimmy in his tank top with his arms folded. Jimmy’s arms looked strong. Both men worked out, ate well and wanted to try to not suffer in old age as much as possible.

“How much can you bench now?”

“On good days when my joints don’t hurt… 235 maybe 240… I remember when them two Greeks kicked my ass and I had to get stitches on my eyelid. You were lifting out in the backyard with your shirt off. It was summer time and Laurie was hanging clothes out on the clothesline. I came to you and asked if you could get me started lifting. You looked at me and told me never to wear stupid clothes anymore and eat more meat… I gained 35 lbs. of muscle that year. Nobody wanted to fight me anymore after that…”

Laurie picked at the blanket that covered her with one hand and reached out to her mother and grandmother who were standing in a field with the wind in their hair. Both women waved to Laurie and she waved back.

“Well, I say we call 911, get her to a hospital and do another swallow test. This is horseshit. If she can swallow, she can swallow.”

“Wade… The car is running but it’s not going to drive anymore… You know what I mean? It is what it is. She’s doing better because she sees you and me now instead of the nurses at the nursing home twice a day. She has advanced Alzheimer’s. It’s a matter of time. I don’t want that but it’s coming. We’re watching the sun setting with clouds. When the clouds pass and the sky gets lighter, we think the sun is coming back. It’s not coming back. It’s setting here and rising somewhere we can’t see.”

“That’s some deep, poetic shit, Jimmy. Put that on a greeting card, make some money.”

“I’ll put your picture on the front for people to laugh so that they won’t think it’s too heavy…”

“Fuck you…”

For as much as Jimmy disdained the man who was really his father, he was impressed with his ability to go on. His ability to persevere. His ability to conquer without fear. Jimmy understood that Wade was afraid to lose his mom. More so that Jimmy.

“Where are you going?” Asked Laurie, faintly.

Laurie’s mother and grandmother turned and held their hair in the breeze. They were young and vibrant like they were back in the 1930’s with crimped, short hair.

“We’re getting things ready for you… We’ll see you soon.”

Wade started to tear up as he looked at Laurie. With a crackling voice and sniffles, he explained harsh things that happened in his life that never left him.

“We captured a gook that got some of our guys killed. We tied him to the back of our truck and let him bounce around until his body was pulled apart and only his trunk was left. I watched a guy next to me die after a hole was put through his head. I watched people die in that burn unit from their injuries. I screamed myself when they scrapped my skin with a wire brush and had to cream my whole body and give me morphine… Those were hard things. Losing your mom is the hardest thing I have ever gone through and I’ll never forget her.”

Jimmy began to tear up. He was crying too. All he could do was shake his head in agreement. They would both miss her.

 

The Beatles

She (we never thought of ourselves)
Is leaving (never a thought for ourselves)
Home (we struggled hard all our lives to get by)
She’s leaving home, after living alone, for so many years.

Inverted Universe

March 29, 2019

There is an other universe where alternate endings happen. The Germans and Japanese won World War II, the Soviets remained Soviets and apartheid still exists in South Africa. In this alternate universe, John F. Kennedy never was shot, neither was his brother, Richard Nixon was never president, the Vietnam War never happened. Oh and the Dead Kennedys named their band, California Uber Alles.

In the deep down south, a cable company in a quest to find something interesting for people to look at like the zoo, found a man Virgil who found oil on his land, sold it and lived a gaudy life that seemed funny and odd to people who live in urban or suburban environments.

Virgil married the daughter of his sister but his sister was really his mother but his mother gave Virgil to her mother because she was only fourteen. His birth mother told Virgil that his cousin was actually his sister but it was too late, he had gotten her pregnant and they had strange looking slow children with wide set eyes. Virgil would invite city folk, mostly black gangbanger types to go fishing and hunting with him and that was the angle of the whole show- take a homie hunting.

Now Virgil wanted Donald Trump to win the election of 2016 with all his being. He wore Trump hats and shirts. He had lawn signs and bumper stickers on his large trucks. When Donald Trump lost the election, Virgil would go on right wing radio shows and talk about how there was a definite conspiracy with hackers to change the results of the election. Illegal aliens and terrorists being allowed in, all had a hand to throw the election to Hillary Clinton and Virgil and many people like him were quite vocal about not accepting at face value that their horse wasn’t tripped, their horse just lost the race. Then one day it all happened.

“It was reported today that the cable television show star Virgil Hibbets of the show, City Meets Country, was attacked by two hooded black men. Virgil had come out of a local barbeque restaurant with a slab of ribs in hand and fought the two attackers. They were described as young black men in their teens or twenties. They attempted to pour tar and feather Mr. Hibbets. As you can see in the grainy closed caption film captured outside the barbeque restaurant, tar is poured on the head of Mr. Hibbets while a second man dumped feathers upon him. They then punched and kicked him and drove off in a car with New York license plates that were captured in this video. There is a Bernie 2016 sticker and Hillary 2016- I’m with her sticker on the back bumper of a green Nissan Leaf.”

The right wing was incensed. Virgil went on Hannity and Laura Ingraham’s Fox television shows and spoke about the incidents.

“Now these evil communist perpatratahs come outta one of them hybrids. They faces was obscured by they hoods… They took they hands and made the letter H like some kinda gang thang and shouted out dat this is Hillary country. They called me a fat crackah and pro-ceeded tah pour tar upon me and then feathers. The tar got into mah eyes… You kin imagine how much mineral spirits ah needed to get the tar off? Mah eyes still ain’t right… The climate in this ah here country is a di-rect result of the politics of the day. It’s horrible tah think dat people would attack me fuh a difference of opinion…”

For a short while, people believed Virgil and then after a while, they started to put together the whole thing and it just did not make sense. Where did the Nissan Leaf come from and why was it in Mississippi? Two young black men who happened to be passionate Hillary supporters in a part of town where if you were black, white people would look at you as if to ask if you were lost. The next thing was that Virgil’s cell phone had been wiped clean. It wasn’t done professionally like Hillary’s with BleachBit. This was just old fashion erasing and not understanding that erasing is not enough. Before long, they found out that the two black men were not black but actual white men who worked for Virgil and wore black shoe polish on their faces. There was closed caption films of the two men buying clothes that black people might wear at a mall in Jackson and another film of them buying tar and feather pillows at a Home Depot outside of their town.

Virgil was confronted with the evidence as were the two men who worked for Virgil and before long, they were all arrested. Virgil having deep pockets bailed himself out and the two who were paid a whopping $3,500.00 by check to help Virgil get back into shape. Call it personal training. CNN, MSNBC, CBS and so on took Virgil to task and rightly so. Virgil’s explanation was that the network that hired him, was thinking of dumping his show and to draw attention and sympathy, he came up with the whole thing. Horrible to think, right?

In Jackson, two weeks later, without cameras, the judge in a speed trial took into account that Virgil had a clean record and never even had so much as a parking ticket in the past. Virgil had to forfeit his bond money and they took as community service, the food bank work he had done as a young man with the minister, Billy Graham. Virgil emerged from the courthouse draped in the American flag, holding the hands of his two little children who looked a little off. The press yelled questions at Virgil. He quietly with a tear in his eye put his hand over his heart and thanked god, his mother and those that love freedom and the United States of America. God Bless.

Genetically Modified Men

October 4, 2018

I thought maybe it was just me. I thought maybe it was just my age and that I didn’t understand that things change and people change along with them. I began to notice that some men just disappeared and then others made a dramatic change from who they were. When the NFL banned tackling and the NHL banned body checking, I began to wonder what was going on. How could so many men change at once and others just vanish?

 

As A medical doctor, I began to examine men who went through big personality changes and found that most grew center punch man buns and beards. They began to develop breasts and discussed things that were less than manly.

“My wife and I found a lovely little town in the country that is basically a strip of antique shops. We found some fabulous deals and stayed at a really charming bed and breakfast that they claimed that Ulysses Grant once stayed at during the Civil War… If you would like information on this, let me know, doctor…”

This was coming from a man who once drove a truck for a living and now works in the children’s section of the local library.  Words like “lovely”, “fabulous” and “charming”, were never part of his lexicon in the past. Every other word in the past was profanity such as, “My fucking back hurts and I’m having a really hard time taking a shit, doctor.” It was quite a change. I’m not a particularly political person but I began to bring up the president to men that I felt had lost their masculinity.

“That man is not my president. He is a horrible man and he needs to be stopped by any means necessary!”

“What about our GDP or unemployment or Wall Street going through the roof?”

“And what about those poor children ripped from their mother’s arms and sent around the country like it was Auschwitz. What about that? No human is illegal, doctor and borders are not who we are…”

“Really? Hmm… Fred… Let me ask you about playing hockey recreationally. How is that going? Are you still playing several times a week?”

“Well doctor, my wife and I take ballroom dancing and Pilates together and go for nightly walks now…”

“Interesting… Can you tell me who you believe will win the Stanley Cup this year?”

“Doctor… I really don’t have time to follow that stuff. I have a list given to me by my wife that I need to complete of things that need to be done around the house. I’m happiest when doing those things rather than sitting in front of the television all night.”

What could it be? What was going on? Why wasn’t I falling victim to this mass transformation? One day I thought I would treat myself to $5.00 latte and went into a Starbucks. The counter girl had a nose ring and a rainbow shirt with a big button that said Resist. I was taken back by her question.

“The usual, sir?”

“Usual? I haven’t been to a Starbucks for years.”

“Is that so… Well, then this one is on us, sir and we hope to see you everyday going forward.”

I drank the coffee and had an overwhelming desire to have another. For no reason I put on the View and asked my wife if she was interested in seeing a romantic comedy rather than playing softball with my team and drinking until the bar closed. All day long I sweat and fought back the desire to leave and get another latte. All night I sat on the couch rocking and thinking about having another latte. When I woke, it had passed. I felt myself again- I ate, dressed and went off to work. I began to loiter at a local Starbucks and noticed the same people coming in over and over again. Men who looked like androgynous hipsters who once looked like frumpy fat men. Weeks later I examined a man who appeared to be examining me.

He eventually couldn’t refrain from telling me what he discovered once he was sure that I wasn’t one of them.

“I’m a garbage man by trade. My job is to collect refuse and take it to a dump sight. Nothing unusual, right? Well I noticed a pig farm next to the dump and wondered what was going on at 4am. I walked through the mire to a fence where they had lights lit up enough to play baseball by. I noticed body bags on the back of trucks… Hundreds of dead bodies and a conveyor belt of old, dead white men. Their nutsacks were being cut from their bodies and dumped into buckets and then fed to pigs. The bodies then went into a crematorium. The people doing the castrating were all large women. I imagine them to be lesbian but maybe just large European types. I was amazed. I wondered where all the old white men were going. I found it, doctor. Tell me you’re not with them! Please tell me!”

I wasn’t one of them and I had to see it for myself and it was just as described. I began to notice that everyone except Eddy the garbage man had become like them and I didn’t know what could be done. I woke this morning to find a latte next to my breakfast cereal. My wife was smiling as if waiting to watch me swallow arsenic. I refused to drink the latte, grabbed my things and headed for the door.

 

“ Someday you will want it. All men want it. They need it. They live for it and when you do get it, it will come at a price, love.   You will pay for who you are.”

“What am I?”

“You know who you are, I don’t need to tell you…”

“I’m not that sharp, Susan. What am I?”

“A man who is white… And you know what that means.”

 

I ran out and began speeding towards the office. I was stopped two blocks from home by a female police officer. She approached the car and never asked me why I was going so fast. She put two hands on the door and looked at me dead in the eye and asked me if I had my latte this morning. I panicked and took off. Here I am at my office with the door locked. I can hear them through the door. Women with sweet, calm voices trying to convince me to unlock the door.

“You have to come around, doctor. All the others are changing and you will change right along with them… It’s futile to resist… Resist… Resist.”

 

I woke up sweating and looked over to find my wife sleeping. It was a dream but it was so real that I sat there for a moment wondering. Just wondering.

Make Believe

August 27, 2018
Kurt ran the plates of the young woman who was swerving while texting in an old Buick.  The car’s registration was expired, the driver’s license was expired and she had no insurance.  She cried as he explained to her that she would be ticketed and the car towed.

“If I had the money for insurance and to get the license tag renewed, I would have done it.  I am flat broke right now until I get my first check.  If you would find it in your heart to let me park here and take the bus home, I will get someone to take me in and register the car…”

Kurt, a police officer used to dealing with so much gang violence on Chicago’s west side, actually felt bad for the young lady.  It did not hurt that she was fit and pretty, dressed well and her car was clean and did not smell of booze or weed.

“Okay Ms. Tonisha…  I will let you get this automobile home without towing or ticketing you.  You have to get everything in order.  The next cop you come across will not be so kind…  I have a favor to ask of you and you do not have to say yes.  There is no gun to your head figuratively speaking of course…”

Now Tonisha felt that white people were the devil and those they were all of privilege, responsible for slavery and for all the misfortunes of the black community and the world.  Only thing worse than a white man was a white male cop.  She saw them as predatory profilers.  Kurt while driving his beat, thought that many blacks were animals that preyed on each other and pointed everywhere except at themselves over problems in their community.  Like most people, Kurt didn’t see himself as racist.  He has a black friend he drinks with that also is a cop and a former soldier.  Every white person has a black friend and they often begin a sentence while speaking to black people by saying- I have a black friend…  Kurt was never drawn to black women particularly but saw how beautiful Tonisha looked and thought hanging with her for the night would be fun and really amusing. The thought came to Tonisha that he was going to ask for a sexual favor.  She hit the record button on her phone.  The question was weird but there was an opportunity to make some money.

Kurt showed up at the banquet hall in a convertible Jeep in a suit, Tonisha in a tight fitting black dress, with pearls to contrast against the tight velvet dress.

“All you have to do is roll with me…  I want to have fun with this all tonight,” said Kurt.

Kurt was fit for a man of nearly 50 years of age.  Kurt had not been to his previous 10 and 20-year reunions but told some old friends that he had lost contact with that he would come. Kurt didn’t believe in Facebook or Twitter and nobody really knew much about him.  He had attended a high school in a northern suburb north of Chicago, joined the military and then became a cop.  He grew up a hockey playing Punk Rock kid with a bald head, tight jeans, Doc Martin Boots, plain shirts with suspenders and hated the world.  He hated his mom for marrying a man he hated back then and the anger of Skinhead Punk Rock, appealed to Kurt.  Thirty years later, Kurt was still playing hockey, was divorced from his wife and living away from his children in another state.  Kurt had a great disdain for the people he went to high school with.  They made fun of the culture he had adopted and didn’t accept him in their circles of friends.  Even the guys on the hockey team felt he was a weirdo albeit a good player.  Kurt put his nametag on and one for Tonisha.  Kurt gave Tonisha his last name on the tag.

“Do you like Champagne?”

“Um…  Hell yes.”

A group of men who used to be on the hockey team were sitting at a table together with their wives.  Kurt walked up and pulled the chair out for Tonisha and then pushed the chair in.

“Wow…  Thirty years…  My god, where has the time gone?  Toni…  These are all guys I told you about that I played high school hockey with…  Lester, Tom, Jim, Horse…  You don’t wanna know why we called him horse…  Bill the goalie.”

Tonisha could feel all the eyes of people old enough to be her parents, burning into her.  The men were thinking that he had managed to land a very pretty, young, black woman… Black woman.  They knew that Kurt was one of those bald kids who hated everything and everyone back in the day.  The Skinheads hated everyone who was not like them and thirty years later, their star defenseman married a black woman?  No way.  After drinks and more drinks, some dancing and then dinner, the questions started coming.

“Toni was driving fast…  I mean really fast.  Texting, swerving, changing lanes without signals, blowing red lights just to get away from me…  Because I’m a police officer, not just some crazed white dude after a pretty African-American princess…  Naw…  I’m just kidding.  She has a thing for ice hockey players and white dudes in general and she happened to be at the rink watching another white dude that she broke up with to be with me.  After a few years, we married and have… two girls…  Twins.”

The women looked at the young woman with a waist the size of a neck and wondered how she got that figure back.  The women there were older, lumpier, wrinkled and Kurt looked like the fountain of youth with a shapely and pretty young thing that would jump-start any man’s libido.  When the night was over, Kurt stopped at a pizza place that never closes in Berwyn and in fancy clothes; they stopped to have a slice of pizza each.  After hours of dancing and drinking, they had worked up an appetite.  Tonisha talked about mundane things with Kurt as they laughed and ate but she had to know why Kurt went through such an elaborate lie with people he used to know.  Tonisha stood to earn $100.00 and keep the clothes he purchased for her and yet she had to know his reasoning for such a bizarre night.

“Those people all live in a Facebook world.  They might take forty pictures of their annoyed wife and kids but they post that one where everyone smiles and looks happy to be together on vacation somewhere.  I’m so happy for you that your kid got a trophy or that you’re at the Grand Canyon…  That’s fantastic…  Why should I give a good goddamn?  It’s not real.  You never hear that their lives are fucked up and that they are stressed out, maxed out on credit cards and suicidal.  They want each other to think everything is fabulous.  I was interested to see if I look as bad, better or the same as those fucks.  I’m trying really hard to fight the effects of aging.  It was purely scientific.  I appreciate your help with this whole make believe night.  I know it’s silly but I really wanted to put on a show for these people tonight.  What are they saying to on another on the way home?  Wow, she is so young, so beautiful and so… Not white.  I may never see them again in my life but I left them wondering…  Come on, I’ll take you home.  Your mom is probably waiting at the window to make sure the cop didn’t kill you…”

Kurt flipped channels as he pet his dog that was sleeping on the couch beside him.  Baseball highlights, hurricane footage from Hawaii.  Kurt was drifting off to sleep when his cell phone buzzed.

I HAD A GREAT TIME TONIGHT.  MAYBE WE ARE FROM DIFFERENT WORLDS AND MAYBE THAT’S NOT BAD.

 

YER WELCOME.  YES.  DIFFER WORLD NOT A BAD THING

 

After close to a half hour a response from Tonisha came in.

I WOULD NOT MIND GOING OUT AGAIN IF YOU WOULD WANT.  I CAN GET BABYSITTING FOR THE TWINS ANYTIME ; )

 

Kurt responded immediately.

 

I WOULD REALLY LIKE THAT.  REALLY I WOULD : )

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Coexist

March 25, 2018

It was some time after 9-11 that Lars Bjornson left his home in Stockholm to discover America. He wanted to eat hot dogs, see sporting events of sports he knew nothing about. He wanted to be in the audience of a Jerry Springer show. He wanted to see where Michael Jordan played basketball and where Al Capone once ran around. Lars wanted to see the tall buildings of Chicago and he also wanted to see the ghetto.

Lars rented a car and asked the doorman of the posh hotel he was staying at on Michigan Avenue, where he could go to see the real ghetto. You know… Poor people. The doorman thought Lars was a bit nuts but then again he felt that all of those really white, white people of Northern European countries, were truly different than your run of the mill American whites. In reality, it was not unlike going on a safari in Africa or visiting a zoo. Lars wanted to see blight, hopelessness, drug addicts and the mentally ill hanging around on street corners. The doorman spoke frankly with him.
“Hey man, there’s shit in life you just should not do. You puttin your life in yo own hands…. It ain’t like round here, dude…. Shit…. It’s yo life. Tell you watchu do…. Take any one of these streets named after old dead white dudes that was once president. Madison, Washington, Adams…. Randolph…. I don’t remember no President Randolph in school but it coulda been one them dudes who was president fo like a day and then got shot. You might wind up like them but you welcome to go. Four miles that way. You cain’t git lost.”
Lars was excited in a sick way not unlike when people go online to view people getting beheaded or shot and watching the life drain out of them. Lars wanted to visit the most dangerous city in an area where the most people get killed every year in the richest most prosperous country in the world. Lars was hoping to actually see a shooting happen in the streets. He slowly drove up and down streets that were strewn with debris, high weeds, barber shops with men hanging out in front of them, boarded up storefronts and liquor stores on almost every corner. People looked back at Lars not unlike when animals make eye contact with humans at the zoo.

Lars saw a beautiful young black woman at a bus stop, eating something carefully out of a bag. Her young, perfect body and model like face attracted Lars. He parked the car and strangely pitched the idea of the woman getting into his car to go to dinner, talk to him and then later have sex with him. For $1,000.00. Asha ( pronounced ASIA ) thought about all the things she could do with $1,000.00 and hopped into the car of the tall blond man from Sweden. Asha went to an expensive seafood restaurant and then back to Lars hotel room to do the deed. Asha marveled at her strange day as she put her clothes back on in front of a floor to ceiling window that looked out at Lake Michigan and the high rises that lined the downtown. It was a glimpse into a life she had only seen on television. She concluded that to be white was truly a boost up the tree of life that black people rarely get unless they have some redeeming value to white people. Lars thought to himself while he showered with all his jewelry, cash and credit cards where he could see it in the locked bathroom, that it was a really cool experience and that having sex with someone of a different color was something that everyone should experience once. Sometimes weird moments and actions lead to something surreal. Well… It did.
Two presidents and sixteen years later, Asha’s son Lars was about to play in the state championship basketball game. Picture a tall caucasian looking child with a tint to his skin with sort of yellow hair with large rotini like curls. Around his ankle was a tracking device for those that should probably be in prison but are allowed back out in society. Lars was arrested for carjacking. Several times in the past, Lars had successfully secured a car, drove it around, smashed it up and abandoned it. In Chicago, things such as that are sport for underprivileged inner city kids who see the disparity between those that have and those that have not. The last carjacking backfired when Lars and his buddies tried to carjack the car of an off duty cop who had a vintage 1970 Plymouth Challenger. Upon pulling a gun on the officer and hopping in, they found that the car was manual transmission and none of the trio knew how to drive a car with a stick shift. Lars looked up to find a gun back in his face. Lars’ two friends had no redeeming value to society at this point in their lives- high school drop outs, gangbangers with criminal history but Lars intrigued the judge. The judge listened to the tall boy speak who looked like he could be white but also could be black, looked at his African American mother and asked the boy rhetorical questions. Do you want to go to jail? Do you want to die young? Do you want your life to amount to nothing? Do you want to become something? Asha told the judge that her son was a very good basketball player and that 6’ 7, he had a good chance of getting a college scholarship and possibly professional basketball. Asha handed a handful letters of intent from division one universities from around the country that were interested in having young Lars play basketball. The judge saw a letter from his alma mater and grew excited. The stern looking white judge looked at Lars and said that he wanted to see him, his mother and his attorney in his office. Once in the judge’s quarters, the judge picked up his phone on his desk and made a call to the president of his alma mater who happened to be a friend, a golf buddy, a drinking buddy to let him know that he should send someone from the athletics department to come to the championship game in Quincy, Illinois to sign Lars to their university. Asha and Lars were stunned by how the serious looking judge was talking so casually to them.
“You’re going to love this school. It is one of the greatest schools in the country. You’ll get a great education in a good environment and you could really help the school by being on the team. They came so close this year! Sweet sixteen! Hopefully you can help them win a national championship…. So listen. Lars will have to wear an ankle monitor for a while. You’ll come back in a few weeks and I’ll clear him. No record. You have to stop fooling around, Lars. You have a promising life ahead of you. Don’t screw it up…. Tell you what…. I think I can make that game in Quincy. I have nothing on my calendar. I will be there with your mom.”
Somewhere in Europe, there is a man with an American son that he knows nothing about. Lars Sr. would be so proud to know that he helped create hope for a woman who was destined to live a dismal, mundane life. Stories such as this make white people feel really good when they know their own kind are helping in some small an indirect way to create prosperity and equality. Even if they didn’t mean to.

Looking For Love

January 17, 2018

Male late 30’s seeks compatible female under 30 for a relationship and
possibly more   Somebody that is hot but no so hot that I can’t deal
with you.  If you’re not into sex for whatever hang up or reason,
you’re not for me.  If you have to have Indian food, please do not do
it too often cause the smell of curry makes me ill.  You have to have
been born a woman and always considered yourself female.  I don’t want
anyone who was once a dude… Sorry, guys. No bi or tri, group sexers,
swappers or twisted types that want to put shit up my ass.  Please no
stupid tattoos or weirdo piercings.  I do have video game night with
my buds on Tuesdays, I like country music and do occasionally watch
wrestiling. I like long walks on the beach but I hope you don’t mind
if my dogs come with.  I don’t mind chick flicks if you’ll
occasionally see a good war movie with me.  I have a thing about going
down on a woman unless she is completely shaved and pristine.  If you
are- I’m amazing.  A true vagitarian ☺. Please don’t respond if you’re
taking medication for anxiety or depression. I don’t do crazy. I can
live with the basic monthly mood swings. If you have kids or are
“kinda” in a relationship, you can skip me.  I don’t want militant,
overly political or someone who lives their life on social media.  You
put down your phone to talk to me and I promise to look right into
your eyes ☺.

So let me tell you about me. I’m fit, good looking, intelligent, have
a good job, two good cars, a nice home and a timeshare in Mexico.  I
work out daily and never have less than 25,000 steps on my Fit Bit and
under 10% body fat.   I like to eat out.  If you’re caught up on
vegetarian, vegan or are a gluten Nazi,  I’m probably not your guy.
If you saw me out, you would look at me twice. I’m not religious but
consider myself Christian.  I love football- college, pro and
lingerie. I love craft beer and margaritas, the color red and know how
to swing dance if you’re into that.  I can play the guitar a little
and have 1970 Dodge Charger with a Hemi engine in cherry condition. I
know there’s a lot here but I don’t want to waste your time and please
don’t waste mine.  I think I offer something special to the right
person of interest.  Okay? Cool.