Sunday, June 7, 2009

The New Roadkill

My life is a place where things come to die—plans, good intentions, potential, woulda-coulda-shouldas, great ideas, friendships—life in general, really. I was pondering this as something else wandered into my life for its demise: a cheeseburger. A fucking cheeseburger. I’d like to say it threw itself under the tires of my Monte Carlo, but I know better.

It fell out of a burger shop bag that lay on its side on the shoulder. I suspect it was fresh out of someone’s vehicle because I only left the apartment to get some MGD and put gas in the car. I couldn’t have passed that spot in the road more than 10 minutes earlier and it wasn't there then. The burger was probably still warm. Shit.

It could be a good thing to run the burgers down. Sometimes I swear those burger joints are out to get us. They’ll take our last dollar just as we clutch our clogged chests under the suffocating darkness of a fatal heart attack. They’ll take our children’s last dollars as the hospice nurse arrives to make us more comfortable during our last days with chemical-laden-beef-induced cancer. Is there even any dairy in those “shakes?”

But other times I want that cheap and easy satisfaction of the ever-unholy gutbombs. I want to be just pulling away from the drive-up window as my unoccupied hand—in sensual, nearly automated motion—unwraps the warm, waxy paper in peels of soft, reassuring crinkles.

I want the smear of ketchup on my knuckles and gooey American cheese in the tiny gullies around my fingernails as lift the sandwich to my mouth, just barely keeping the pickles securely pressed under the top-flap of a steam-soggy bun. And as I bite, the meat slides just a bit beneath the excess of mustard and onions. (I hope I didn’t drop any in my lap.) Fuck, it’s good.

I’ll just take one more bite and then shift gears, I say to myself. But, it’s so good I nearly finish the whole shit as I drive two miles down main street in second gear. The pistons are so hot and angry they threaten to swap cylinders. That’s a game of Wac-a-Mole that no one needs, but the burger is like a womb.

Then I nearly burn myself on the grease-fire-hot French fries. The salt is rough in the oil on my fingers but I’m shoveling them in; It’s a good thing I got the “large.” I bite open a couple of ketchup packets and squeeze them into the carton of fries. Some fries get covered, others get none, but I like the variety and surprise. I take another mouthful of shoestrings and double check with fatty, salted fingers that my seatbelt is secured.

And a Coke or a shake? Jesus! I can never decide, so I get both. Hell, they’re still cheap. What we don’t spend on this processed food will only end up in the doctor’s pocket anyway.

I lick the ketchup off my fingers and grab the ice-cold cup that drips with condensation. My fingers slide around the wet, now-slightly-greasy, wax-coated cup. I slurp some of the water droplets off the side of the cup before shoving the giant, Alaska pipeline straw in my mouth and sucking down about half the soda.

I’m a little bloated when I reach for the shake. Another giant straw slurp and the faux-vanilla, milk-syrup chemical spill coats my esophagus and stomach. I’ll probably develop type 2 diabetes before I get home, and I sure wouldn’t want to see what the mass of food in my stomach looks like. I’ll bet it’s an unappetizing and chunky brownish-pink sludge.

It was this meal experience that rushed through my mind in that split second that I drove over the cheeseburger. I know it was a cheeseburger because I recognized the paper. It was still wrapped and round and that soft crush was more nauseating than all the animals I’ve ever rolled over with a splattering crunch or crack.

The meal that could have been, but never would, dropped into the inky, empty depths of my soul without so much as a rustle. I thought about turning around to save the burger—it might still be in the paper—but I saw a car behind me. My heart sank. Fucker.

There could have been more food in the bag by the shoulder, too. How did it land there? Was it tossed out by ungracious and angry punk kids in the back of their abusive stepfather’s pick-up? Did it fall from absentminded person’s car roof? Did someone have a diet-related revelation before even opening the bag, swear off everything but tofu and righteously hurl the bag out the passenger window?

I will never know. I arrived home depressed and too ashamed to go back out. I sat on the couch with the six-pack. Nothing good was on television and, as the sun went down, the room darkened around me.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Graham Seeks Additional Apologies

Following his controversial request for U.S. Supreme Court justice nominee, Sonia Sotomayor, to apologize for a statement she made about her ethnic heritage during a 2001 speech, South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham is now seeking additional apologies from other people he believes to be similarly “proud.”

In a press conference Friday, Graham said these people include, among others, “Blacks, Jews, ‘tee-pee Indians’” and his “Oriental dry cleaner.”

“Look,” said Graham, “I just want a fair shake—whether I’m in court, at the supermarket or at the local Taco John’s. I’m just worried that certain folks of color are more likely to look out for their own. It’s un-American and unfair. Besides, whites were pretty much here first.”

Civil rights groups are up in arms over what they say is Graham’s “reverse reverse racism.”

“This is unacceptable,” said Benjamin Todd Jealous, president and CEO of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. “This ain’t the way the script flips. And of course we look out for our own…we let whitey ‘look out’ for us for almost 300 years, and we know where that got us. Hell, he owes us an apology for that!”

“Graham is a putz and a shmuck,” said Stymie Neusbaum, spokesperson for the Jewish Council for Public Affairs. “Us apologize? That schlemiel can go straight to hell! Oy vey! I’d better sit down. I’ve got a pounding kopvaitik!

“I don’t even know what he [Graham] is talking about!” said Kamala Ho, owner of Top Hat Dry Cleaners, which handles Graham’s laundry “I always help him first and I never mention to anyone all the odd stains on his clothing. And I’m not ‘Oriental.' My family’s from Hawaii. Screw him and his apologies. He can get his shit cleaned down the street at Sid’s. Now that guy is totally Asian.”

Graham abruptly concluded his press conference after a reporter asked him if he had read the full transcript of Sotomayor’s 2001 speech with which Graham was taking issue.

During a May 31st appearance on Fox News, Graham called on Sotomayor to apologize for stating in her speech that she hoped a “wise Latina" judge would, in certain cases, reach a better conclusion than a white man.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Local Boy Fails Family Stress Test, Files for Bankruptcy

Thursday, May 7, 2009—At a press conference held in living room of the Johnson family’s Des Moines, Iowa, home, Abe Johnson announced that their son, Jacob, did not survive a recently completed, two-month-long stress test.

“We will be sorry to see him go,” admitted Abe tearfully, “but he just couldn’t cut it.”

The stress test was administered to all three of the Johnson children. Tina, 14, and John, 8, fared well and will remain with the family. According to Abe Johnson, Jacob, 11, will be filing for bankruptcy and liquidating his assets, which include a 10-speed bicycle and the entire Jonas Brothers catalog on compact disk.

“I mean, what if something really bad happened to our family?” asked the childrens' mother, Joan Johnson. “We know we could count on Tina and John, but Jacob would just be along for the ride and it doesn’t seem fair.”

The press conference outlined the measures that had been taken to accurately assess Jacob's solvency. They included withholding Jacob’s birthday gifts and a reduction of his allowance by 38 percent—actions supported by some very important economic experts, including U.S. Treasury Secretary, Timothy Geithner.

“Abe called me in January,” said Geithner. “We reviewed Jacob's assets, liabilities and capital, and we thought 38 percent was extremely generous, considering what a lazy, do-nothing that kid is.”

During the press conference, both of Jacob’s debtors gathered on the lawn of the Johnson home and demanded what was owed them.

“He still owes me 6 bucks from that last time we were at Chuck E. Cheese’s,” lamented Timmy Stringer. “How am I supposed to make ends meet without that capital?”

“And that’s my fucking 10-speed,” added Mitch Barger. “We never should have invested in that irresponsible dreamer.”

Jacob was unavailable for comment following the press conference, but spoke with our reporter while catching pond frogs in the woods near his home Friday afternoon. Much of what he said was unintelligible because he was crying so hard he got the hiccups.

One thing, however, was clear: he seemed strangely unconcerned about the impact of this devastating economic failure on his future.

“Why don’t they love me?” Jacob sobbed.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

The Real Faggots

It’s an ugly word, I know. But I’m still attached to it.

If god is the supreme decider, why do the self-righteous dogma thumpers have to ride everyone’s cases? “Judge not lest ye be judged yourself”? Bullshit. More like: Judge not, and you risk being judged yourself. Amen.

It didn’t take long for me to reject the christianity with which I was raised. My parents were good to me, but the religion wasn’t. Even if its rigid and paranoid ideology had been a good fit for me, the “scene” wasn’t.

I spent too much time in catholic school as the target for the insecure, ass-kissing tattle tales; as the fall guy for the nuns desperate to make an example of someone; as the pariah who dared ask the reasonable questions of the cryptic and nonsensical passages. I’m over it...all of it.

So...the real faggots? The christians and other myopic, desperate zealots who want to misquote a political volume passed off as a spiritual text in order to stamp out everything pleasant about human existence.

Gays getting married? Not on the real faggots’ watch. But, it’s the real faggots who have our country’s divorce rate at about 50 percent. If they really hate the gays, they should let them marry and at least 50 percent of gays would be as miserable as half of the rest of us.

Or maybe it’s about semantics. Maybe those people don’t like “gays” because by name they’re gay, happy, jovial or just enjoying life. If I were stupid enough to be religious, I suppose it would piss me off, too.

And the zealots think they’re the experts, that they’ve got all the answers. Yeah—they’re experts...on being real faggots. Fuck them. Fuck them brutally hard. And fuck them without remorse or mercy.

This is what I was thinking about, stewing in and fuming over, as I listened to the radio news while driving to another job interview.

I was just glad I put on clean underwear; it’s more important than showering. The elasticated cotton of my boxer briefs was tight around my thighs and dry beneath my balls. As I stewed in frustration over news of the real faggots, my ball sweat was neatly wicked away from my skin, preventing bacteria and the subsequent odor—but more importantly, it kept me comfortable.

And comfort is paramount. Discomfort can drive a sane man to the sharp edges of his own soul. I’m pretty sure Hitler suffered from foot and ball sweat—serious foot and ball sweat. Wet feet and wet balls, like wet shoes and wet underpants are enough to turn a harmless German art student into a fucking murderous fascist. Well...that, and sucking at art.

Hitler's shitty art and writing aside, sweat would, have in the least, ruined my job interview at a local restaurant.

Last month, the adhesives plant where I work cut my crew's hours back from five days to four days to three. I can see the writing on the wall and I’ve got cabin fever. I don’t enjoy time off. It’s just another chance for my brain to work me over like a sadistic, lobotomized prison cell mate. It’s a wonder I don’t drink more than I do. Hell, it’s a wonder I don’t just hang myself.

I'm desperate for professional vitality. I’ve sent out so many resumes and cover letters that I don’t know who I am any longer. I’ve tweaked myself for every job; I must have 30 different resumes. They’re all accurate, but each spins the information a bit differently.

It’s no different than how people are during the interviews or—if they get the job—at work. At work, we’re all tweaked versions of ourselves. We pass to get paid. We sell out.

“What is something you feel you need to work on, professionally speaking?” The woman asked me. She’s a manager of some sort, but not important enough to be anything other than the “weeder” for these corporate interviews. “If I can get past her,” I thought, “I might have a chance.”

“I work too hard sometimes,” I said thoughtfully, as if revealing a private sentiment and not simply saying what I know she wants to hear. “I try to tackle too much at one time. In fact, I have trouble leaving work because I know there’s always more that can be accomplished, and accomplishment makes me feel good because I’m helping the ‘team.’”

I offered her a little smile, raised eyebrows and a shrug as if to add “I’m just a company man, m’am.”

What I should have said is “If this company wants me to eat shit with a big fucking grin, sign me up. If you want me to slice the tires on your competition’s manager’s car, I’m your man. If you want me to fuck up the guys delivering food to the diner next door, I gotcha covered.” But, I thought better of it and just kept reading my script.

“I would absolutely travel.”

“I would be willing to relocate.”

“There’s always another way to cut costs.”

“I’m a manager before I’m a friend.”

“Blah blah blah fucking blah fuck fuck blah...” is how it sounded to me. I could spew this crap in my sleep. I should teach a seminar on how to apply for jobs, handle interviews, and then pick yourself up when they never call you. I’m great at that last part, but it usually involves a tranny hooker, some tainted hash and a lot of cheap whiskey.

I was trying to forget about the interview when I got home. I took off my shirt and tie, and checked the fridge for booze.

Marcy’s sister was in town, and the two of them were out somewhere. Though this sister is the older sister, she’s still not old enough to buy alcohol. As usual, she had drunk all my whiskey and beer. All that remained were the ingredients for Marcy’s drink of choice: a “Calimosa,” as she calls it. It’s the gayest drink I’ve ever halfway enjoyed.

I filled a pint glass half with ice, poured in about 4 ounces of Dr. Pepper and about 6 ounces of crappy red wine. I rummaged through Marcy’s sister’s suitcase and found a couple airplane bottles of vanilla vodka. I floated an ounce of that shit on top.

It worked. After three of those, my brain was pretty quiet. But I couldn’t watch the news; that shit would set me off again. I set the clicker beside me on the couch while Judge Judy gave the third degree to some poor sap with a shitty necktie. They were passing around Polaroids of his dented Tercel when I was fortunate enough to fall asleep.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Vatican’s Ban on Condoms a “Godsend” for the KKK

Mt. Holly, NC—The ranking officers of the Ku Klux Klan gathered for their annual “G-Hate Summit,” and to draft a resolution supporting the Vatican’s recently renewed ban on condoms.

“I told you we was officers o’ God!” exclaimed KKK Grand Wizard Pro Tempore, Jimmy Griffin. “This proves it! And we don’t need no rope or a tree; just good ol’ fashioned AIDS.”

The global economic downturn has caused the KKK's overall membership to dwindle and the subsequent drop in dues had dashed any hopes of an imminent, full-blown race war. The organization, however, has been invigorated by Pope Benedict XVI’s reaffirmation of the ban.

“Look,” Griffin said excitedly, “the AIDS epidemic in Africa kills, like, two million niggers a year! And for free! Praise Jesus!”

National Klabee, Joe Purdy, agreed.

“This truly was some Godsend,” he said. “We couldn’t ask for no better support for our cause. Now, we know the Pope ain’t gonna mention the KKK, but we’re clearly on the same side. Under our robes, we white Christians are all equal.”

“You gotta hand it to the Germans,” admired Griffin, smiling. “The Pope will finally finish what Hitler started. All we do now is wait ‘em out. Those niggers’ll be dead in, like, 6 years, I figure.”

Despite this philosophical windfall, the KKK still faces tough times. The organization has enacted a nationwide hiring freeze and cut back on the purchases of everything from paper clips to giant, wooden crucifixes.

Group leaders are optimistic about 2009, though they haven’t ruled out seeking government bailout money.

“We’ll prob’ly just talk with Biden about that,” said Purdy.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

The Dog Whipper

I really wish Marcy could see it when I’m depressed. It doesn’t happen often, which may explain why she can’t tell. Still, that may be all the more reason I need her help when it does happen.

I had a three-day weekend—to be the first of many. The adhesives plant had trimmed back to a four-day work week to save money. That means a 20 percent smaller paycheck. I spent Saturday in bed; I didn’t feel there’d be any point in getting up. I feel like everything I touch turns to shit. I don’t know where I thought I’d be at this point in my life, but I’m not happy right now. Don’t tell my ex-wife; she’d only celebrate.

For my girlfriend, Marcy, everything—even my depression—is all about her. “If you’re not going to talk to me,” she said, “then I’m gonna go stay with mamma. You can pout by yourself.”

Two things: First, when you’re in high school like she is, you don’t know how tough reality can be. Second, her going to her mamma’s isn’t so dramatic; her mamma’s town house is three blocks away. It’s still aggravating in principle, though.

“THANKS FOR NOTHING!” I shouted as she closed the door behind her.

I had to shit and passed the kitchen on the way to the bathroom. I opened the fridge, grabbed an MGD and headed for the toilet. I sat down, stared blankly at the wall and took a few pulls off the beer. On the floor were a few pages from the USA Today I swiped from my neighbor, but I’d read them all several times. I’d farted, but couldn’t shit, so I just pulled up my shorts without wiping.

I grabbed another beer and headed back to bed. I just sat there propped up against my pillow searching for anything in my head that sounded good. Should I go for a walk, watch television, or make some food? Everything I thought of just bored me. I chugged the second beer and went to sleep.

The phone rang sometime after dark. It was probably Marcy, but I can’t be sure. I yanked the phone cord out of the wall and threw the entire shit across the room. Fuck everybody.

I awoke about daybreak, which is too early for a day off. I retrieved another beer and chugged it while standing over the kitchen sink. That, together with the toilet paper I stuffed in my ears bought me another three hours of sleep.

When I opened my eyes, I replayed Marcy’s comments from the previous day, as well as some of her choice comments from previous arguments. Christ, if I were waiting for her to help my depression, I might as well eat a gun barrel, or just go lay down on the train tracks and wait to die. And she wonders why I don’t open up and rely on others. Relying on others would have killed me by now.

No one besides you can take care of you. How does this fact elude me even for a moment? “I’ve got to get out of bed,” I thought. I got up and threw on some shorts, a t-shirt and my sneakers. I went out and knocked on my neighbor’s door.

“Hey, Bishop,” he said with a smile. “What’s up?”

“Is your kid home?”

“Naw—he’s with his bitch mom. You want to borrow his bike again?”

“Yeah,” I replied. “Is that alright?”

“Sure. You wanna come in for a beer? What I save on food with him being gone I spent on a little hooch.” He glanced at his watch. “It’s noon somewhere. How about some Sunny D and vodka?”

“Maybe when I get back.” I said.

“Sure. The bike’s locked up to the back fence—same combo.”


“Say, Bishop, you seen my newspaper around here?”

“I’d ask the Mexican family that moved into 3C,” I said over my shoulder as I headed into the stairwell.

His kid was almost as tall as me, so I didn’t have to adjust the seat. The gears were a little stiff from being left out in the weather, but they worked. I wasn’t sure where I was going. I just wanted to be moving, toward anything and anywhere else.

The neighborhoods around the apartment building were pretty quiet, but a bicycle would always bring out any dogs not behind a fence or on a leash. I hadn’t gotten more than a couple of blocks away before some stocky mutt lunged out from behind a large juniper bush and nearly knocked me off my bike. I kicked out at him, but he dodged my foot. He ran beside me, snarling and barking for about 30 yards before turning around.

I stopped at the next corner. My heart was racing. Between work and Marcy, I was done being fucked with. I lay the bike down near the curb in front of the local elementary school. I pulled off and stripped a three-foot-long switch from a young tree in the school’s front lawn. I whipped it around a few times to hear it slice the air with a satisfying swipp. I got on my bike and headed back the way I’d come.

When the dog lunged from the juniper, I was ready. I caught him across the forehead with the switch. He yelped and retreated underneath the bush. HA! “Don’t fuck with Bishop!” I thought. I was feeling better already.

I remembered a few more loose dogs up on the street behind the elementary and biked in that direction. Right on cue, the dogs leapt from their yards into the road and I nailed ‘em with the switch. They’d yelp and run back to their houses. Who would have thought whipping dogs could cure depression?

I was dripping with sweat and invigorated when I locked the bike to the fence behind my apartment building. Things were looking up.

“I think I’ll take that Sunny D & V,” I said as my neighbor opened up his door. He just grinned.

After a couple drinks I returned to my apartment. Still no Marcy. I had busted the clip on the phone cord, so I just gently set it in the jack and placed a strip of duct tape over it to hold it in. Maybe she’d call and we could patch things up. I grabbed a beer, turned on the television and sat down on the couch. My neighbor had mixed the drinks pretty aggressively, and I was riding a solid drunk.

Maybe I hadn’t been that depressed after all. The bike ride had definitely helped. I just hoped I hadn’t hurt any of the dogs. I mean, they shouldn’t be lunging at me like that, but maybe dogs aren’t smart enough to understand roads and bikes.

Jesus, what if I really hurt those dogs? I took a long pull on the beer. I don’t think I hurt them, but how would I know? I was so caught up in the invigorating rush of whipping that switch around. Fuck! I’m such an asshole. I took out my mood on a bunch of stupid, helpless fuckin’ animals. Was that one dog wagging its tail? Oh, Jesus. What have I done?

I half-heartedly took another swig of beer and started crying. “What the hell is wrong with me,” I wondered as the tears really started flowing. Just then the door opened.

“What the hell is wrong with you?” Marcy asked, standing in the doorway. “I thought if I gave you some time you’d stop pouting. Now you’re pouting and drunk. I was calling you all night. I don’t even know why I came back over here. And to think I felt bad for leaving. Mamma was right.” And with that she left again, slamming the door behind her.

I couldn’t stop crying. Not because of anything Marcy said, but because I felt so horrible about taking advantage of those damn dogs. I finished the beer and went to the fridge. I took what remained of the leftover pizza and threw it in a plastic grocery bag. I ran downstairs, unlocked the bike and headed back towards the elementary school.

“Dammit. I must be more drunk than I thought,” I thought. And I could only remember where a couple of the dogs lived. I was horribly unsteady on the bike as I approached the house with the large juniper. The dog cautiously peered out from beneath the bush.

“Hey little guy,” I said pulling a slice of cold pepperoni pizza from my bag as I eased the bicycle down against the sidewalk. My shoelace had apparently come undone and gotten caught in the chain. I didn’t notice this until I tripped and fell hard on the concrete, skinning both knees and an elbow. The dog backed away, still watching me as I struggled to get the lace loose and stand up.

I tossed the now-dirty pizza slice underneath the bush beside the dog. He sniffed at it and took a few tentative bites before wolfing down the rest of it. I tried coaxing him out, but he wouldn’t come out from under the bush. I felt a little better anyway.

After about 40 minutes of sweaty, drunken bicycling, I found two of the other dogs I whipped, I think. I fed pizza to two more dogs, in any case. Maybe it’s all the same as far as my karma is concerned. I hoped so, because I was out of pizza.

The sun beat down on me as sweat ran into my eyes and the cuts on my knees and elbow. It was all I could do to lock the bike and climb the stairs to my apartment. I took another beer with me into the hot shower, which stung something fierce for the first few minutes.

Wet and naked, I fell into bed and slept soundly until morning. Singing birds awakened me. I lay in bed watching the first rays of sun move across the wall above the headboard. I sat up in bed and my knees stung as the sheet moved across them.

At least I still had my health and my four-day-a-week job. And after a plate of eggs and bacon, I figured I could probably talk some sense into Marcy. Who knows? The week might turn out okay after all.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

KKK to Boost Membership with Marketing Campaign, Free Hot Dogs

March 3, 2009, Listre, North Carolina—The Mid-Atlantic branch of the Ku Klux Klan announced Friday it has hired a marketing firm to help boost the organization’s dwindling membership. “There’s nothin’ more American than hangin' a nigger from a tree,” said Great Grand Dragon Cleetus Jeeter, “but we can’t rely on that no more to bring in the new boys.” Jeeter said the Klan’s newly unveiled marketing campaign has been designed to reveal a kinder, gentler Klan, which is sensitive to today’s whites.

He says the first phase of the campaign will feature “block-burnings.” Jeeter admits “block-burning” sounds a bit off-putting. “We ain’t burnin’ city blocks or nothin’. We’re just replacing burnin’ crosses with burnin’ blocks of wood. People has got the wrong idea about our crosses, so we’re gonna start fresh.

We had changed the name to ‘Rapture Days,’” said Jeeter, “but someone forgot to call the print shop. Next thing you know, we got some eighty thousand ‘block-burning’ flyers, and they’s too costly to redo. He knows to change the name for next year.”

Jeeter is also telling folks they need to bring more than an appetite for a race war. “We’ll be giving away roasted hot dogs, too.” he said. “Besides, we figured we already had the fires goin’ you know.” Jeeter says the group is doing it’s best to court the environmentally conscious racists who have strongly criticized the Klan’s failure to go green, much less even clean up themselves, ever. Jeeter says the Klan will now be collecting trash as well as militantly segregating the recyclables from at all events. “Sure we killed us some Jews last year,” said Jeeter, “but nothing ruins a good hate crime like a bunch of litterbugs.”

The second phase of the Klan’s marketing campaign will initiate a so-called “billboard blitzkrieg.” The ads will feature a hooded Klan member, holding a fully-garnished hot dog in one hand while giving a thumbs up with the other. “The marketing boys wanted to show folks our friendly side by showin’ a Klansman without his hood,” Jeeter laments, “but won’t nobody do it.” The campaign seemed stymied, but the marketing team overcame that hurdle with a catchy slogan, which Jeeter says is the backbone of this campaign.

The billboards, as well as magazine ads, lapel pins and bumper stickers will focus on that slogan—showcasing the organization’s new “Klan-Do” attitude. Future marketing phases will support the slogan with pictures of Klansmen helping old, white ladies across the street and helping old, white men bag their groceries—all while giving a big thumbs up. Jeeter says the new image is just the shot in the arm the Klan needs.

“It brings a tear to my eye, and that’s a fact,” says Jeeter, grinning and giving a big thumbs up. “Klan-Do! Heh, heh. Serious, though. Jesus would be proud. I think it’s somethin’ real positive that God-fearin’, race-hatin’ whites can really get behind.”

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Real Men Don’t Slap

Marcy and I got into an argument over her Parakeet crapping on the carpet. It’s technically my apartment and my deposit in jeopardy, so I’m not sure how I lost the argument or why she kicked me out for the evening. Ugh.

Whatever. I had a hankering for Taco Bell anyway. At the drive-thru I pick-up my usual: 4 bean and cheese burritos, cinnamon twists and a jumbo Mountain Dew. I used to get tacos or a couple Mexican pizzas, but those never survived for long. Soggy tacos are worse than warm lager, so I switched to burritos. Besides, those things reheat really well for breakfast.

Since I grabbed a laptop from a co-worker, I’ve been able to sit in front of a house in Waterbury, eating my fast food while snagging free wireless internet. (Funny, the guy whose computer I grabbed got fired later that week. It’s a good thing I swiped it before he took off.) I don't worry about being spotted while surfing; my Monte Carlo’s windows are tinted pretty dark. Plus, the house is on the corner of a quiet cul-de-sac.

So, with a warm burrito in hand, I was in Waterbury downloading a bunch of porn—mostly videos. I found some good ones with a couple of skinny transvestites using a plunger. I was getting into it when a commotion started outside a house across the street and the cops soon showed up. I guess the rich folks aren’t any happier than the rest of us. I had enough porn to last a bit, so I left.

After I download my fill, I usually park behind the old folks home on School Street. I can sit there for hours. The parking lot is nearly full, but the residents rarely drive so there’s not much activity. I get in a few leisurely workouts and then head over to Buddy’s for a few beers. Fridays are always fun times with the karaoke. I’m usually good for an Abba tune or two.

Some Latina cross dresser was belting out “Dancing Queen” when I walked in, so I decided to skip the Swedish serenade. I grabbed an MGD and sat down in the corner. I hadn’t been there more than a few minutes when two beefy guys started shouting at each other. Before I could figure out what they were arguing about, the bigger of the two guys slapped the other in the face. The place just went silent. The smaller guy snatched up his jacket and stormed out with the bigger guy on his heels, lisping “I’m tho thorry. Omigawd! I’m tho thorry!”

Now this was the third time in as many weeks that I’ve seen one guy slap another in the face. The first time was in the bathroom at Applebee’s, and last week it was at Hooters. I don’t remember what started either fight—if you can even call it “fighting.”

Real men don’t slap. Men punch, elbow, kick, shove, grab, throw, chop, knee and maybe even bite, but not slap. I don’t understand the thought process—or lack thereof—that precedes the bitch slapping.

If you want to give the other guy a taste of the whoop-ass he’s asking for, a good shove is perfect, especially if he goes to the ground. If you’d rather scare him good, just go ahead and let him have a solid hook to the nose. If you want to drop him, nail him hard in the temple. And though I don’t like dirty fighting, I’ve got nothing against carrying a set of knuckles just in case.

I suppose if you’re not a real man, and you want to momentarily confuse the other guy—and everyone else—then that slapping shit is just what the gay doctor ordered. If you slap a real man though, you’ll likely just make him madder than hell and then you’ve got that to deal with.

The whole slapping scene made me uncomfortable. I just don’t get it. If I see it again and can get over feeling grossed out, I’ll have to ask these guys what the deal is. At the rate things are going, I’m sure I’ll get the chance again real soon.

I don’t know what’s come over Des Moines. The city used to be a lot tougher. I hope America didn’t sissy-fy itself by voting in a black president. I mean, I’m all for giving other races a chance, but maybe we should have started with someone who was only, like, a quarter black, or just really good friends with some blacks.

I’m telling you: it is possible to change too fast. In American today there’s subtle fear, unrest and a subsequent lack of trust that’s compromising America’s traditional commitments. This slapping thing is a mere symptom. America’s men can no longer commit to our God-given right to physically defend our women, ourselves, our property and our country. The entire institution of noble brawling could be endangered.

Ugh. Just talking about this shit is making me sick, but I refuse be infected by this cowardly, “open-handed” epidemic. I’ve got to be perpetually deliberate. I must be true to my X&Y. I've got to man-up and commit 110% to everything that I do—starting right now!

Another burrito and a couple more free videos and I’m going straight home. That goddamned bird is going to stop shitting on the carpet—and not because I’m gonna slap it!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Thank the Machine

I went out with my girlfriend last night. For a few weeks we’d wanted to visit the new Western Sizzler near our apartment, so we did. Marcy had the salad bar and I ordered the small rib eye plate. They brought me a New York strip that was completely overcooked and the 7-and-7s were watered down, but other than that, it was pretty good. Being a complainer isn’t going to help anyone, and our country really just needs to stick together in this economy.

On the way home, I stopped to put half a tank of fuel in the Monte Carlo. I gave Marcy a ten-spot to grab a pack of MGD cans and a jumbo bag of Funyuns. It was Friday, after all.

When I finished fueling, I hung up the nozzle. The pump beeped at me, asking if I wanted a receipt. Blinking black arrows on a LCD screen pointed at two buttons on the surrounding panel. My choices of responses beside the arrows were “Yes” and “No, thanks.”

“No, thanks?” Who the hell am I thanking? Am I supposed to be thanking the pump? I mean, somewhere, some bastard had to think about this as he created the text and programming for thousands of fuel stations.

So what was it this idiot had in mind? Is this his quiet way of reminding the country to be nicer to machines? Had this mongoloid sot watched Maximum Overdrive one too many times and simply snapped?

“No, thanks” The sick fuck even put in a comma. Like it’s not stupid enough for us to be thanking a cold, unthinking, unfeeling fuel pump, but we’re going to take the absurdity further with a thoughtful pause before saying “thanks?” That goddamned comma speaks to the detail and twisted deliberation with which this madman crafted the pump’s interface.

And this is what happens when corrupt, totalitarian regimes ship our American men’s jobs overseas. The circuit boards in fuel pumps across our great nation are now suffering the ills of being molested by slant-eyed assembly men and corrupted by perverted, curry-sniffing programmers—people unfit to clean prison crematoriums, much less construct fuel pumps that transfuse the lifeblood into this proudly mobile, motoring American nation.

I pressed “Yes” so hard the LCD display flickered and faded into faint, rainbow waves—interestingly, not unlike the rainbow waves I see in the hose water as I wash my old motor oil off the pavement and into the sewer drain near our apartment. The tab printed and curled and I tore it off with a patriotic vigor.

I didn’t want a damned receipt, but if I had pressed “No, thanks.” I would have been complicit in this crime—an accessory to the terrorist who designed this pump, an accomplice to the deranged and dumb son-of-a-bitch, foreign architect attempting to force this seemingly insignificant moment into existence millions of times each day across the United Stated of America.

The government wants to fight terrorism? Here at these subtly anthropomorphized pumps is where the homeland battle should begin. But, will that sell papers or generate viewers? No. And it’s a damned conspiracy.

“I hope you got everything you wanted,” I said to Marcy as she climbed into the car, “because we’re NEVER coming back to this Christ-forsaken, communist gas station!”

“The beer and Funyuns are in the bag,” Marcy responded with sympathetic eyes and a shrug.

I just stared at her for a moment before kissing her forehead. For a sixteen year old, she really gets it and I’m lucky to have her. I just smiled and turned the engine over without another word. She wouldn’t understand my anger, and I don’t yet want to corrupt her with the reality of this fucked-up world.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

North Carolina Governor’s School Introduces “Klan Klass”

After a rash of Klan-themed graffiti attacks on buildings in and around Siler City, N.C., the state has decided to take a stand against what it’s calling “an affront to decent citizenship.”

“You would think these young men and women would know that the Nazi swastika points to the right, not the left, always to the this one on my arm,” said Senator Rip Long, a Republican from Townsville, N.C. “This is North Carolina, not some Indian reservation.”

The final straw, however, according to school administrators, was the constant misspelling of “Ku” as “Klu.”

“We refuse to be undermined by simple, easily preventable mistakes after working so hard to purge our curriculum of evolution, alternative lifestyles and physical education.” said North Carolina Governor’s School Superintendant Dixie Duke. “We see the blatantly erroneous graffiti as a desperate cry for help that we intend to answer with love and support.”

“Klan Klass” will begin in the fall semester of 2009, pending the instructor’s release from prison. The course is slated to focus on fascist iconography, Proto Indo-European history and spelling. The course will also feature a recitation presenting a primer on filling out application forms for a Graduate Equivalency Degree, unemployment, as well as disability and welfare.

Duke says she’s optimistic about the progrom’s success.

“You have to goosestep before you can fly,” she said.