Sunday, December 30, 2012

Say Hello to My Little Friend.

Hello. My name is Peter. I''m short of stature and am graying at the edges. I have a friend, Richie, who is my opposite. Tall and robust, but completely bald.

Together, we make quite a pair. You remember that comic strip, 'Mutt and Jeff?' No? Then you're too young to be reading this blog. Or, you're not well-rounded. And don't we all want to be well-rounded?

You see, I've been trying to see eye to eye with Richie all of my life. He tells tall tales, I tell short stories. He elaborates with his smoothe talk and I stutter and stumble over the hairiest of details. Certainly, you have a friend with whom you have similar contrasts? No? Oh yeah.

I've been crazy, a bit nutty, as long as I can remember or my name isn't Peter. I've extended my love and acceptance to many in my short, yet full lifetime. Yet, it seems that I always fall short. I've banged my head on so many walls after failing to hit my goals that my helmet is dented and I have a black eye.

Yet Richie, he is always successful. Always reaching the mark and eliciting smiles no matter how trite the task or how little the effort. Sure, it's easy for him to stretch himself to the limits in order to garner those smiles. But, can he put himself aside for a few moments and allow words from the lips to attain the same results? I think not.

I remember once when I was strictly confined. My head was aching as a result and I was bursting to be set free from my prison. My two closest friends felt my pain and hatched a plan. That's what true friends do, they hatch plans. They dangle ideas in front of you, hoping someone will bite and follow your lead.
Nearby, Richie was also feeling confined. Yet Richie was never able to restrain himself so he broke free without reservation. Let's just say that the door swung open but Richie couldn't read the signs and entered a situation in which he'll always remember as one in which restraints no longer apply.

That's ok though. Richie is still doing well. He has a dark tan and has his own hair once again.

Me? I'll always be short and robust, but I'm secure with myself. My two closest friends never leave my side. They hang back a few steps on most days, occasionally jumping up to greet me after a hard day. I never go anywhere without them and check on their well-being daily. Meanwhile, I still need a helmet due to my over-eager mentality, but at least my flashlight works.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Yelps from the Closet: Green Paper, The Cliff and Buffalo Nickels

Yelps from the Closet: Green Paper, The Cliff and Buffalo Nickels: Hello world, meet Cliff. No, no, no, that didn't come out just right. Now, imagine a young Sean Connery, donned in a tuxedo, slyly glancing ...

Green Paper, The Cliff and Buffalo Nickels

Hello world, meet Cliff. No, no, no, that didn't come out just right. Now, imagine a young Sean Connery, donned in a tuxedo, slyly glancing at you while casually with coolness lighting a cigarette and saying, 'The name is Cliff, Fiscal Cliff.'

That's about the only way that I can imagine hearing those words any longer. I'm so very fatigued from hearing and reading about this so-called Mayan death of America and, thus, the world, that I could shoot thumbtacks from my sphincter and pin a Farrah Fawcett poster to the wall from seventy-five yards.

Yet, the entire partisan, political spectacle known as FC (as I now refer to it) is nothing more than a sad commentary on humankind's millenia of fascination with money. Moolah, greenbacks, dough, whatever you choose to call it, money is again at the center of everything. In the words of the late, great Richard Pryor, 'How long will this bullshit go on?"
It seems that we, humanity, have lost our shit over money. Again.

Now, I realize that money is important. Without it, bank executives would freeze to death. Starter logs are a bitch to light and money burns fast and bright. Politicians would never be elected without it. Christianity, nay, all organized religions in our time would come to a screeching halt without hope of resurrection. And, by golly, how would we ever know what car, tampon or dating site to buy into without advertising?
Pass the plate and hand me a biscuit. If I had a nickel for everytime I've said that.....

Now, as we pass from the devastation that arrived on 12/21/12 into the year 2013, we are poised to jump into the abyss of extinction as political parties grab each other's crotches, squeeze tight and enjoy either the pain of giving or the pleasure of grabbing an opponent's balls. What's funny about that image isn't the whole ball-grabbing thing but the idea that there are opponents... opponents bent on doing what's right. However, in the middle of doing what is right there is a big-assed S with either one or two vertical lines. For the layman, $.

Maybe the Maya were right. Hell, they had the same discussions about who can live comfortably and who should suffer monetarily. The only difference is that their fiscal cliff (FC) was detailed in skull carvings and ours is broadcast by talking skulls on FOX News.

I know, I know. This argument has happened throughout time. However, I'm not making an argument, I'm making a statement. Money sucks. Money Divides and Money has a forked, and pierced, tongue. Why pierced? Because every good whore knows that a piered tongue adds zest to a blowjob. That's just what money does to people, licks, sticks and ultimately makes us pricks.

Ask yourself this question.... if we jump off that cliff in a few days and your taxes go up, will it matter? And, before you say, "Yes! I can barely afford my Red Box late fees as it is!" think about this... What are you gonna take with you when you leave this big 'ol planet filled with universal excrement? Nothing. Nada. You're going to go out with the exact same thing you came in with. Money? I'm fairly certain that your god, my god, or whatever source of energy you subscribe to won't give two shits and a bag of wooden nickels that you were taxed too high or too low, drove a Mazda, a Ferrari or lived financially one day at a time as opposed to owning your financial future like a submissive slave in a BDSM flick.

Wake up. Maybe the cliff we should be talking about is a place where we throw our self-absorbed selves from and look within for what is truly valuable.

Cliff. Fiscal Cliff.

Mr. Cliff - "Do you expect me to talk?"
GoldDinger - "No, Mr. Cliff. I expect you to die."

Art does imitate life, eh? And yeah, I'd like rocket launchers on my Aston Martin.



Monday, December 17, 2012

Sins of the Father

Monday, December 17th, 2012.

I preface this blog entry with a date for a reason. You see, for six straight days, I've held my emotions in check. No one has seen what I've been feeling.

I made it nearly seven days. Yeah, that sounds almost like a line from 'Cheeseburger in Paradise', I know. Nearly. But, in emotions and anger reminiscent of manic days when I'd repeatedly punch brick walls until my knuckles were bloody, beaten, bruised or broken, I've faltered.

One is strong in one's own mind until the unthinkable or unexpected happens. For me, that was the unexpected death of my father, my dad... six days ago. And, being the way I am with a mind such as I possess, I felt the need to be 'strong', 'resilient', a pillar of strength. Ha! I pity the fool!

Then, on the heels of my own unthinkable personal loss, the senseless murder and loss of elementary school children in Connecticut.

Oh wait, lest I forget, add to that the total stupidity, inane mentality and inbred fucktardedness of the Westboro Baptist Church and their satanic minions as they plan to protest at the funerals of toddlers killed by a mentally-unstable person. Talk about the ultimate irony.

You might ask, "Jeff, how will you combine your unresolved anger, grieving for the loss of your father, the loss of toddlers and utter disdain (I'm being kind right now) for the Westboro Baptist Church and their love of hatred, not to mention the misunderstanding of those of us who are not mentally stable (whatever that means) at every moment into a single blog entry?" Good question. And I'll just say that I make this shit up as I go along, my fingers pecking as my mind leads them to keys on the keyboard.

But, there is a connection. And, it's not anger. Yeah, I'll admit that if I lived in the vicinity of Fast-Five Freddy Phelps and his coglomerate of hatemongers I'd gladly pay four dollars per gallon of gas to burn him and his minions in effigy. After all, according to their 'loving god', that's what's gonna happen to each and every one of those lemmings and their blind, hate-filled leader anyway. Hell, I'd listen to a sermon espoused by Mussolini and Hitler and give it more credence than what I'd give Freddy's words of 'salvation' as he and his limp-dicked followers proclaim to be truth.

Sure, there's anger in my words due to my dad having passed. Yet, my dad would be no less a target for the hypocites of WBC than the innocent children that were murdered, or the soldiers killed in the field of battle, or Elizabeth Edwards, or your family member, friend, co-worker.... and at that thought, I want to go Popeye Doyle or Charles Bronson and just eliminate the source of unnecessary bigotry and hurt impressed upon people already hurting as a result of life's absurdities.

Am I calling for violence against Freddy and his ilk? Surely not. That would make me as inhuman and soul-less as they are. Karma's a bitch, though. I do call for a protest for their having been born. Sort of a reversal of what they do. The whole '666' thing, in a way. Maybe we, as a single source of positive energy, can become the 'Anti-Freddy.' I'm down with that. I'll even make bumper stickers.

I don't want to diminish the hurt I feel at having unexpectedly lost my father to a massive coronary. I'm finding that stifling emotions can do damage to one's own heart and lead to harsh words and actions towards those who are just as vulnerable. Geez, I'm growing up and I don't like it.

Therefore, I'll end with something I wrote a while ago which resounds with me, and hopefully with you, in these difficult, unfriendly and senseless times....

The Fred Phelps/Jesus Wikileaks Transcripts

(The following has been edited)

Okie doke. The following is an unofficial transcript obtained by WikiLeaks that details a conversation between Fred Phelps and his leader, Jesus, son of Tammy and Travis. The Westboro Jesus who was born in a mangy trailer, covered in swaddling sheets, complete with hood and a copy of 'Mein Kampf' and damns those who swill Jim Beam in favor of Jack Daniels and will save everyone who believes that he is the Savior of Dale Earnhardt's soul.

... and we begin ...

Fred: "God? Jesus? You there? I need to speak at ya ... this whore wife of an adulterer died today. Thank you. Can you give me a sign that you snuffed her? I mean, I know that you hate those who stand by sinners, whoremongers, liars and fans of Jeff Gordon. Woot woot."

.. and then, silence.

Fred: "Hey, Jeez ... it's me, Fred. I'm thinkin' that after dinner at the Sizzler, my flock might do a video that shows Liz Edwards as a sinner in Hell ... maybe to the tune by Bow Wow Wow ... you know, "I Want Candy" except we'll spin it into, "I Want Cancer" ... I know you like parody."

..silence.

Freddy: "Jesus, Jesus ... I always do what you tell me to do. You say 'hate', I hate. You say, 'antagonize', I antagonize. You say, "blow an altar boy', I say I'm not Catholic but I'll finger a schoolgirl ... I'm always here for ya, J-man. But, what are we gonna do about this evil, evil woman that died? I mean, Hell-fire, you sent her death and suffering and damnation, afterall. So, how can I, we, my church, further extol your message of love and acceptance by denouncing her self-perceived strength of spirit?"

... "ahem":... silence...

And then, as if a breeze was blown from the sphincter of God, a voice emerged from behind chords of a banjo ... and the voice said unto Fred the Divine ...

Voice: "Fred, Can ya hear me? It's me, Bob. I like the name 'Bob' because you can say it backwards or forwards and it still says 'Bob'.

Fred: "Jesus? God? Hallelujah! You have shown yourself and affirmed that your church, THE church, here in Kentucky, is right in protesting the death of a life of one who died in trying to live as she proclaimed false hope knowing that she was going to die which in effect is a lie and as such condemns her to damnation and hellfire."

Voice: It's 'Bob'.

Fred: "Oh, Bob. My utmost apologies. I should thrust myself upon a sword or stone myself. But, If I were to do that then who would lead the flock to the promised land of polygamy, judgementalism and paradise?... the paradise in which women without makeup or hair care products are desireable,.. the paradise that has St. Peter at the gates of Heaven, tearing in trackside tickets complete with an eternal pit pass and handing each of us entering a bucket of chicken wings and a cooler of holy beverages? J-Man, you and I are equal ... Let me bow my head for a moment as you nod to St. Earnhardt ..."

Voice: "Fred ... Fred, Fred, Fred ... first of all, just so ya know ... Dale is downstairs. Yeah, he rubbed too many cars the wrong way. Secondly, Liz ... Miss Edwards ... well, she's written quite an appeal on her own behalf as a result of your damning condemnation. I gotta tell ya Freddy, you might need to hire an attorney ... I hear Lindsay Lohan's and Mel Gibson's counsel might be available ... I might be the judge, jury and executioner but I'm willing to give you your day in court ..."

Fred: "Wait a minute ... Is this you Jesus? I know that sometimes there are people that try to impersonate you... Hold on, wait a second, I have a call from FOX News ... can you hold?"

Voice: "Suuure ... hehe ... (little does Freddy know that I made the call and I own FOX News) ...

....... moments later ....

Fred: "Uhhhh ... sorry 'bout that bro ... Beck wanted to know the details of the protest and bought four tickets. By the way, all monies received for protesting the death and life of those who died while exhibiting unholy faith and strength goes towards the new Family Life center and annual Chicken Pie dinner for the unsaved and unworthy. It's a good thing, trust me. All I personally get from it is a blurb on network news and possibly a blowjob from a parishoner which I know you'll forgive because I'm doing the work of...well, you."

Voice: "I most certainly have a nice spot in mind for your life in eternity, Freddy. Your actions really do accentuate my teachings in a way you'd never fathom. "Fathom" ... there's a word you might want to explore.
"Liz!" "Liz!" ... Hold on a sec, Freddy ....

Voice: "Hey, Liz ... would you reach over St. John and pass me that red Sharpie? yeah... that one ... and if you don't mind, I need that sheet of poster board ... I have an idea for a sign that is gonna make headlines at an upcoming protest ....I'm thinkin' you should be there to speak for me ..."

Voice: "Hey, Freddy? Here's where I want you to go next ... Oops... My bad. You're gonna be there already. Oops again, I just spoiled your surprise ... you're the guest of honor, so to speak. By the way, did you know that Westboro, Kentucky is now the galactic center of the universe and a spiraling black hole rests underneath the altar of your sanctuary? *wink wink* ... Just trying to clue you in ... "

Fred: "I KNEW that I was your chosen one! Can I have your chair at the right hand of God? I mean, Hell...oops, Heck ... You might have raised the dead but I condemned 'em ... so, move over...."

..... And so it is .. so let it be written, so let it be done ... please.
 
Amen and Holy Shit.


Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Yelps from the Closet: Been Awhile. Back With A Vengeance.

Yelps from the Closet: Been Awhile. Back With A Vengeance.: Hello world. It's nice to be back... sorta. My life as a seemingly normal individual has been at the forefront while I shove the dark side a...

Been Awhile. Back With A Vengeance.

Hello world. It's nice to be back... sorta. My life as a seemingly normal individual has been at the forefront while I shove the dark side aside, or behind, as I attempt to live life as a moralized, humanized, domesticated human being.

.... and the crowd went silent.....

The crowd is composed of the noises, voices and thoughts that bombard my mind. Then, I relay those voices as thoughts, both good and bad, verbally to those I feel are within earshot and worthy of either humbling or praise. Hey, I'm not judgemental, what can I say. If I wanted my voices to be judgemental I'd have named them after parishioners of the Westboro Baptist Church.

Yet, I'm here again. I've been purposely not writing. Yeah, purposely. Ask me why.... "Why? Jeff, oh why?..." you ask...

Well, a couple of reasons. A). I've been a good boy. and 2). I'm only writing when I feel the inspiration to write. Picture yourself after a big breakfast of eggs, bacon, grits and black coffee... suddenly, *KaBlam* mr. tummy provides inspiration to run from the table and, well, provide a sacrifice. That's how I write, except I haven't had much bacon and eggs lately. Mostly tofu and Triscuits.

In any case, there is a point to this posting. A point that surely will upset those looking for a rant from me. Hell, I don't rant anyway, I 'express'. Like anal glands during a rectal exam, I express... get the stank out.... But this isn't an expression.

I'm happy. Yeah, fuck you too. I said 'Happy'. I know, I know, 'happy' isn't the same as 'joy'. I've had Joy since I met my soulmate but happiness has been elusive. And there's many reasons I'm happy. Let me expound... if I bore you, read on...

One, I'm happy with myself. I'm finally in a place of self-acceptance despite my flaws. That's fuckin' tough for me so if you call me a wimp for getting to this point, well, fuck you and try to ive through my last five years.

B). Although my daughter still hates me, she did send me an abusive email telling me why she hates me.

3). I hugged my son for the first time in five years.

4). I recognize that I'm needed by those who aren't connected to me by DNA, marriage vows or my ability to spout random trivia.

D). I have underwear with holes in places that now qualify them as sexual fetish wear.

11). I'm with a woman who not only loves and accepts me as I am but also wants me to stay crazy.

Ok, so one of the aforementioned is a little nuts. I'll leave it to you, the reader, to discern which is which. I guarantee that no one will agree with me as to which brings me the most happiness.

But hey, does that really matter? I'm just as nuckin' futs as you are and vice versa. I just accept it and am proud of who I am. it's taken a long, long time to be able to do that. I've blamed everyone from my ex to myself to the Loudoun County Sheriff's Department to my kids.... there is no one to blame, only those to offer my hand to shake and say, 'Mucho Grassyass'... 'You made me who I am and I've done something positive for you as well (except for the sheriff's department. That' wasn't mutually life-enhancing).

It feels good to write again. I'm ready to finish my book, tell my story and help others. Yeah, you heard that right. The ranter wants to help. And I know that I can help. Because, like you, I have a story that most haven't heard with situations that most haven't encountered and outcomes that most can't comprehend.

That's why I write.
That's why I'm Back.

That, and I just can't sleep without Klonopin.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Let Them Eat Crow.

I'm sort of known for saying and doing the wrong things. Most times, I don't even know when I've done so. Just happens.... like the sun rises in the morning and farts happen after beans.... both can be beautiful things.

Yet, farts are often better. The sun always rises but the sky may be cloudy or you might live in Alaska and not see it for awhile. Fatrs, however, are always noticed, despite the weather. In fact, on a humid day, a fart will often make itself known more quickly.

On that note, I turn to crows. Black, feathered, claw-toed bastards and bastettes that seem to perch just outside my window each and every morning. Worse than roosters, these cawing, yawing, looking-for-love birds of no relevance wake me up every morning.
Of course, maybe it's partly my fault. I sleep with my windows open now that the weather is turning cooler, much like my demeanor. And, just outside my windows are flower pots that held poppies before the bastard black birds picked away all of he seeds.

So, at nearly six in the morning, each morning, after a long night of work and several hours of trying to fall asleep, I hear, "Caw, Caw, Caw"....... three requests for something, who knows what, just outside my window. And, for some reason I can't yet grasp, it's the only fuckin' animal sound in nature that my dog will not bark towards. My god, Shizzle will bark if he hears a gnat fart but not a big, black cawing bird. So, I have to get up, go to the window and yell at the damn birds.

Here's what I've learned.... yelling at crows only encourages them. If you yell at a '3-cawing' male, four '5-cawing' females show up. I don't know what they'e saying to each other but their vocabulary is quite limited and highly annoying. Much like listening to the Microsoft help line.

I killed a bird once, when I was a kid, with a BB gun. I swore I'd never kill another animal again. Despite my anally-challenged, highly-abnormal Shit-Zoo, I've stuck to my guns with my swearing.

But, these crows, these 'Spy vs. Spy' loudmouthed, cock-wannabees... they're making me rethink a trip to the sporting goods store for a shotgun purchase.

I'm thinking crow must taste at least a little like chicken.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

A Day Like Any Other

Just a day .... like any other. Some are good, some are really good. Some are bad, some suck, But, they're all nothing more than ticks on a clock, a day lasting no more than 24 hours.

I just happened to wonder what my son is doing today. In his 2nd week of college, undoubtedly still getting aquianted with his surroundings, meeting new people... overcoming fears.
I remember my first days away from home. I was fortunate though that both of my parents were just a single phone call away. My son... is two phone calls away ... and I'm not in either call. I miss my boy. I miss his smile. I miss his laugh.... and I miss his trust he had in me. I'd give every last quarter I've saved to make is life easier as he transitions from childhood to adulthood. But, he doesn't want my help, my concern or my love.

Funny thing is... he's just like me. An individual with short-sighted vision and a hard headed mentality bent on proving a point to everyone and especially to ones who hurt him.

That's ok. I can live with that. I can live with his snubbing me just as I have learned to live with my daughter snubbing me. But can they live with the knowledge that their snubbing doesn't stop me, despite all of my faults, and boy oh boy do I have faults, from loving and caring for them and being there for them no matter what life may bring their way?

You read my blog.... you know I'm a pretty messed up guy in many ways. My thinking doesn't adhere to most people's standards. That's ok with me. I'm not alive to adhere to anyone individuals' standards. Nor are any one of us ...

But, despite my faults, despite my thinking when it comes to life, religion, politics... whatever.... I love my son... and my daughter.

It's just another day.... another day without a response to a text, or a call that I've sent my kids. A day like any other. But even my mind, my crazy, bipolar, 'out there' mind, looks at every day... every day as the day my phone might buzz twice with a text reply to my reaching out....

I don't stop living knowing I'm despised. I live harder hoping to overcome the past.

Sorry to disappoint those expecting a humorous post, but hey, humor keeps me alive, so as I write this I have 'Always Look on the Bright Side of Life" playing in my head .... that, and I woke up this morning with the unexplicable repitition of the 'Gilligan's Island' theme song resounding through my noggin....

That said.... I love you, Avery and Anna. And no matter what happens in your lives, no matter what you may need, I'm here. Just like Robinsin Crusoe, as primitive as can be.....

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Yelps from the Closet: Elmer, The BiPolar Bear, Chapter 1

Yelps from the Closet: Elmer, The BiPolar Bear, Chapter 1: Elmer was quite the bear. He was big, he was intimidating, He was white and hairy and full of himself. Elmer loved life. He considered him...

Elmer, The BiPolar Bear, Chapter 1

Elmer was quite the bear. He was big, he was intimidating, He was white and hairy and full of himself.

Elmer loved life. He considered himself the biggest, baddest bear ever createted. He was, afterall, a polar bear. Able to live through the harshest of conditions, Elmer knew of his limitations yet knew of his own ability to survive, no matter the conditions.

Elmer was the bipolar bear. Big, hairy, white and quite sure of his invulnerabilities. Long claws, sharp teeth, the mind of a killer and a disdain for any creature smaller than himself.

Yet, the wildlife surrounding Elmer scoffed. Why fear a bear with the mind incapable of determining what to kill for food and what to spare? After all, Elmer considered otters cute and unworthy of dying, no matter how hungry he might be. Yet. elk... well, elk were fair game. Cocky, antlered bastards.

Elmer thought too much. Always thinking. Not like the 'Bi' polar bear who jumped at the chance to gobble down anything, Elmer was a bipolar bear with a heart of gold and a mind of lead that often caused him to go hungry as a resulf of indecision.

One day, during October, as ususal, Elmer felt a change in his demeanor. No longer comfortable with the role he played as the big, hairy white bear expected to catch fish and. well, be the one to sustain other's happiness and survival, Elmer grunted 'arrgh, ummph, ooga booga/....which translates to 'fuck it, I'm not a pawn to anyone'.....

So, Elmer, without consltation, decided to become a grizzly bear....although a white, unusual grizzly bear.

There are no white grizzly bears. But Elmer was now a grizzly bear. And, he educated the grizzly bears that bears are bears, despite color. White, brown, black... bears are bears. Bipolar or not.

Elmer was never accepted into the bear community outside of the cold, icy world in which he lived. The other bears couldn't understand how anoher bear so different could ever even imagine being part of the bear world.

Bears are intelligent creatures. Bipolar bears are exceptional creatures. The rest of the bear community doesn't understand and is quite ignorant, eating nuts and killing squirrels.

Elmer is doing just fine. His scratchings will soon be available as a book describing his difficulties living amongst the outside bear communities.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

All a blur

It's all a blur anymore. There's no set directives, only feelings and a belief that what I do and say is right, or wrong. Usually right.

I have no direction I have no reason to move ahead. I once was told that I had a mark upon me that set me apart from most everyone else. At the time, I felt it. Now, I wonder. I've become a loving caregiver while sacrificing myself. Yet, I know that my sacrifice has a purpose.

My losing the love and respect of mh children must assuredly have a purpose if not, I'm simply a worthless, unneeded human being

But this isn't about my offspring. This is about a deep-seated desire and pulling to help others who suffer from the ones in life who don't appreciate us, our intelligence and our ability to look beyond the present.

Call me crazy. It's ok. I am crazy. Every great mind who thought outside ghd box was crazy. Einstein curie, newton the list goes on and on.

I'm holding a genius IQ. yeah, me. Go figure. Mh mind never stops. I drive Pam and those around me crazy. That'd ok too. Normal Is boring. Normal makes one talk about food and galas priced. Normal shows up at the office five minuted early on order to show fhr'boss that you're committed.

Be committed. Commit yourself. Spend a day and dont talk. Just listen and learn. You'll wonder who's really crazy. Surprises come in fruit cups.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Vacation, Man-tits and Management

I'm in Tennessee. On vacation. In Tennessee. No beach. No surf. No 'special' taxi drivers. No music without a banjo. Tennessee, a land time forgot only after it forgot West Virginia.

In my last post, I mentioned the gentle roar of my wife, snoring beside me as she slumbered. Tonight, the gentle snoring is less pronounced, yet, on an airbed to her right sleeps my sister. My sister, who obviously has a deviated septum and a wonderful knack for calling elk to our window as she sleeps.

Yet, again, this is vacation. And, I'm thankful that my sister is able to share at least a small amount of time with us here in the land of Deliverance and man-boobs. Yes, this is the land of obesity. Man boobs are as prevalent as pine trees and molasses here in Tennessee. I know that as I've aged I've padded my midsection with a few pounds of survival fuel, but here in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, I'm surrounded by survivalists who plan on living off body fat for years after the apocalypse.

However, despite my observations at the inhumanly intolerable indoor waterpark here where I reside, I'm not going to write about the effects of Big Macs, french fries, gravy and ballpark franks. The sights, smells and visions that will haunt me after this week do not compare to the horrors of what has preceded this vacation.... the sights, sounds and experiences recently thrown my way as a result of, *gulp* , my job.

I know, I shouldn't even be thinking of my job while on vacation. Hell, I'm a bar manager, I shouldn't give two shits and a can of ravioli about my job in the first place. Especially while I'm in a place like Pigeon Forge, Tennessee and the land of DollyWood. Oh, and you readers who look at me and judge me for not caring about my job while you're out of work... well, too bad... there are jobs out there. Climb down from your pedestals and find something beneath you if need be. Not everyone makes a huge salary but jobs are out there (my political rant for the day).

I might not be the highest-titled manager with my employer, but I am the one with the most insight and the highest intelligence. Sure, I don't wear a tie, and I never will again, but what I have to offer is immeasurable compared to what less-experienced, less intelligent and less self-important morons have to offer. I have always had a disdain for incompetence and it hasn't been until recently that I've repeatedly been bombarded with not only incompetence from management but lack of respect for my abilities.

Again, I'll never claim to know everything. I'm not my ex-wife or a member of the GOP. But, I'm no dummy. either. And, I'm no pushover who will accept a word from management as being concrete without actions to back up what management says. I seem to have developed a big mouth that has both made me a black sheep with management and a vocal proponent of rights amongst my co-workers.

I'm no different from anyone else with the exception of a few jail stays, arrests, mental ward visits and 'supposed' suicide attemps. As a result of age and experience, I refuse to accept anyone attempting to walk over me and deny my authority in a position that I've clearly earned and worked hard to attain.

Can you relate?

So, as I sit here late at night, straining to hear the keystrokes as my sister and beloved wife call to the wildlife here in Tennessee as they sleep in blissful peace, I will ponder how I will face my future Seven days from now my future will either be changed positively or negatively. It all depends on the man in the monkey suit sitting behind the desk and how he reacts to a man who's ego and intelligence exceeds his own.

Yee haw. Bring on the banjos. This is 'Deliverance' at it's core. Survival of the fittest.


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Yelps from the Closet: Never... Never would I have thought this.

Yelps from the Closet: Never... Never would I have thought this.: I'd add audio to this post if I was able. Not to let anyone hear my voice or my words but to let everyone hear the snorts and snores of the ...

Never... Never would I have thought this.

I'd add audio to this post if I was able. Not to let anyone hear my voice or my words but to let everyone hear the snorts and snores of the lady who is beside me as I write this. Her snores...her breaths...her slumbering snorts...all music to my ears.

As sweet and musical as this may sound, i'm sure to offend at least two to seven people who may read this blog. You see, as I glance to my left, admire the open mouth of the one I love and simultaneously use the 'up' volume button on the remote control while I watch 'American Pickers' on the History Channel, I have experienced something I never thought I'd ever experience again. A feeling I thought I'd buried under years of hurt....

I look at this woman, my wife of almost one year, a woman who has endured her own parental hardships and continues to do so.... and I regret.........

I regret.....

I regret that I'll never have a child with her that is our own.

Yeah, I said it. i can't believe it myself. Maybe it's due to our spending time in a doctor's office today as younger women and men without a clue of what's to come filed in two by two to have an ultrasound and marvel at the creature that was growing within...

Or, maybe it is because my love for this woman exceeds anything I've ever experienced. That's not to take anything away from the two children I had with my other wife. I do love them and want to have them love me too...

But, I wonder.... what would my children with Pam be like? Tall, like her? Short, like me? Smart, like both of us? Screwed in the head like me or rational and realistic like Pam?

I never once considered being a parent again. After all, I'm already a parent, whether my own kids recognize it or not.

But, for a moment, a moment that I now continue to remember, I wonder.... what would our children be like? You see, Pam can't conceive anymore, despite my efforts to fertilize.

But, I glance to my left. And, as she sleeps, I picture her as a mother of my children. Would those children be different than those she has? Than those I have? Absolutely. They'd be our children and they'd be perfect and certainly well-versed in the workings of the real world.

Would I drive a mini-van?... Uh, No. Not on your fuckin' life. We'd have a side car on the Harley and a double harness belt in the convertible. But, we'd be good parents, no matter the race and ethnicity of the baby that popped out.

I love my wife. Yeah, I'm soft like that. And, I'm conjuring visions of parenthood with my wife despite the hatred my own children exhibit towards me.

If that doesn't scream 'Love'. then what does? A forty-eight year old man with two unloving kids, married to a woman with two kids who consider me an afterthought, yet wondering what life as a father with this woman would be like.

Life would be complete.

That's the great thing about life and the mind. It takes you everywhere you were, are and will possibly go.

Again, I look to my left. 'Snort.

Love is grand/ Truly.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Yelps from the Closet: Well now, was I ever called down to reality?

Yelps from the Closet: Well now, was I ever called down to reality?: It seems that perhaps my brain speaks before consulting my fingers. You see, I type with two fingers, the index finger on my left hand that ...

Well now, was I ever called down to reality?

It seems that perhaps my brain speaks before consulting my fingers. You see, I type with two fingers, the index finger on my left hand that is perfectly normal and the index finger on my right hand that shows the signs of a permanent reminder of a temporary feeling.... lumpy, deformed and probably still encasising a bit of brick from a punch to a wall for some reason I still cannot recall.

I've been told lately that my writings have been cynical, angry and maybe a bit indicative of oncoming mania. Despite my objections, I know enough to take what I'm told both seriously and with a grain of salt due to my past experience with mania. Mania.... what a wonderful, yet unsettling state of mind.

I'm not angry, I'm frustrated. I'm not cynical, I'm honest and forthcoming with my opinions. I'm not manic, either. Mania has a way of sending me to jail, the mental hospital, the ER and on tangents that alienate everyone.

I'm just me. A forty-eight-year-old man with quite an active mind, a bag full of opinions and a disdain for the system that seemingly holds control over an individual's life.

An anonymous responder quite aptly pointed out in my last blog entry that maybe it isn't all about being an individual as it is about being a member of a team, albeit possibly a losing team. A valid point to be sure. But what if the leader of that team, despite talent, training and all the right moves, still manages to undermine the team? It's when that realization hits that a low chop block from behind on my own team leader, a supposed star, is in order.

Don't misunderstand, I am all about team harmony and cohesiveness. Afterall, that's what makes our world liveable. But when a leader undermines the many for the sake of self, well, then, chop block from behind. Take out the knees and push the head to the turf and hope that the concussion reverses the self-important thinking that puts the masses in the crosshairs of authority's directives.

Anonymous had it right, in a perfect world. But this isn't a perfect world and the corporate world is a battleground that requires body armor and a mind of steel. What Anonymous said to me spoke to me. But a team requires a leader worthy of respect and it seems that those type leaders are few and far between. I admire Anonymous. I know Anonymous. I wish I could have the resolve and dedication that Anonymous exhibits.

But, alas, I'm a doubter. I trust no one who smiles, gives me an answer and promises to be in my corner when I know that their corner contains a bonus and recognition for doing just the opposite of what promises I've just received. It's the corporate world. It's the political world and often, but not in my case, it's the personal world as it pertains to relationships.

Am I cynical? Damn straight. Do I have a bit of a reason to be cynical? Absolutely. Should you, we, be wary of those who seem to have our best interests at heart? Of course. Is everyone who seems to have our best interests at heart a lying, smiling, unethical person worthy of cynicism? Absolutely not. No way.

There are good people who care out there. They might not look the way you expect them to look, speak the way you expect them to speak or elaborate on their intentions in a clear and concise manner. But, they're out there. Not on TV usually and not in political endorsements and certainly not on FOX News, but they're out there.

Anonymous know that is the case and has called me to the mat on it. Sure, I'm cynical and a wee bit disenchanted with not only my life but life in general. Yet, it sometimes takes a faceless, nameless opinion and calling out to point out the inconsistencies of life as well as the mistakes in judgement that we all ocassionally make.

Is Anonymous perfect? No. Am I always right? Uh, nah. But can we all learn from a word or two from another? Absolutely.

I still have a problem with suits and their sense of superiority. But I also now see another side of the team spirit.

Chop Block, team cheer, and final victory.

Amen.

Oh yeah, and Holy Shit.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Yelps from the Closet: Control What? Well, Control THIS!

Yelps from the Closet: Control What? Well, Control THIS!: I can't help it. I think of the word 'control' and I picture Janet Jackson in black spandex, singing a hit from the early 90's. I like the s...

Control What? Well, Control THIS!

I can't help it. I think of the word 'control' and I picture Janet Jackson in black spandex, singing a hit from the early 90's. I like the song.... catchy beat.

But, I hate the word.

The thing is, quite unfortunately, we allow control of others to dictate who we are and where we go in life. I've lived that way all of my life, it seems.

"Act this way."
"Do this, or else..."
"We expect this of you in order for you to succeed...."
"You're one of us now... here's what we need for you to do for us...."

Fuck that. Capital FUCK that.

Who am I, or you, to succumb to another's expectations of who you should be or how you should act in your life in order to succeed?

I'm not specifically speaking about career, either. How many people, be it a spouse, a parent, a sibling, a friend or a coworker, or an etcetera, has looked upon you with a quizzical look as you say or do something that is unexpected or unwelcomed in their eyes, despite what you believe to be right?

My guess is a helluva lot of 'em.

Here's a harder question.... how many times have you sacrificed your own beliefs and sense of self in order to placate another with intelligence less than your own but position higher that what you percieve yours to be?

Be honest. Really. We have all caved to those who claim to be our 'boss' or our 'superior'... 'superior'.... a word that chaps my hairy, yet lily-white ass. Would you like to know who my superior is? Me. I'm my superior. Only I can decide what I'm to do to better myself and my life. Not some fucker in a starched white shirt and cufflinks or anyone else with a title that can be shortened to an acronym such as 'mgr', 'sup'. 'Rep', 'Dem' or 'Mitt.

Yet daily, we all seem to succumb to the control of another due to their title, position or simply a look of importance due their wearing a designer set of clothing.

Again I say, FUCK that.

Now, I'm obviously asking for dissention amongst my own ranks since I hold a title. Yet, I will never, ever expect anyone to surrender their sense of self to cater to my own ego for the sake of the 'greater good', which seems to always be the bottom line. The almighty dollar. As a matter of fact, I hold a title for the sole reason of being able to move to warmer, tropical locales without having such a difficult time in finding a position to alienate future employers.

Control. What an ugly word. What a word that screams 'surrender'. Control implies adherence to another's rules and expectations instead of one's own. Who ever told you that your expectations were wrong and unworthy of recognition? I'll tell you who told you that.... everyone you ever bowed to and feared. Not dear of harm, but fear of rejection, of being unheard, of being dismissed because of your personality, views and opinions.

Control is an evil, evil bitch and it exists at every level of life. From grade school through death... someone wants to keep you and your thoughts at bay and make you think that you should be doing what they want you to be doing, not what what you know you're capable of accomplishing. The part of this equation that is most disheartening is that what your capabilities might be screaming are far better than what those controlling your actions are demanding.

Loss of individuality. Loss of self-identity and loss of ...well... self. Then you die. And some guy in a suit has basically led your life for you.... or maybe it was a spouse, or a relative or ..*gulp*... a religious leader spouting verses from a book written by men who , well, demanded and expected adherence through their own control.

Control.

Janet Jackson looked best saying the word. At least she did twenty years ago before Nutri-System bought her soul with their control... ie, money.

Grab your crotch with one hand and extend your middle finger with the other as you accept life as being yours, being precious and being no on else's domain. Then, when you're told, "You don't fit our mold, you're fired," Say, "FUCK that, your mold isn't my mold. You don't fit MY mold." Then grasp your identity, smirk, and live a life meant for no one but you.

Amen and Holy Shit.

I'm Jeff Brunk, and I endorse this message.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Yelps from the Closet: A 'Pryor-esque" Rant... Yeah, It's Not P.C.

Yelps from the Closet: A 'Pryor-esque" Rant... Yeah, It's Not P.C.: Richard Pryor said it best in his rendition of Mudbone on his 'Bicentennial Nigger' album .... "How long?.... How long must this bullshit go...

A 'Pryor-esque" Rant... Yeah, It's Not P.C.

Richard Pryor said it best in his rendition of Mudbone on his 'Bicentennial Nigger' album .... "How long?.... How long must this bullshit go on?...."

If you haven't heard the routine, you'll not have a clue as to what I'm referring. If you have heard the Mudbone routine, you'll not only understand what I'm saying, but what the great Mr. Pryor was saying and the accent he used while verbally portraying a southern Baptist preacher fed up with the bullshit that life, and those seemingly in control of our lives, doles out to each of us on a daily basis.

I now ask that same question... 'How long must this bullshit go on?...." as I face not only minor personal dilemmas but major issues facing both me and those closest to me.

"But, Jeff...." you may ask.... "what can be so bad as to reach a point of decisiveness that may or may not affect your future and reality as you know it?"....

Or maybe you're not asking that question, but now you know where my head is going.

I'll start with the mundane, my own personal circumstances. To me, my circumstances in life are nothing more than mosquitoes

It is now 1:53am. In twelve hours I will be sitting in front of the desk of a man who considers himself my boss and superior. That's an entirely different blog. He will begin the conversation, as the newest head of our floundering organization, by expounding upon the company's expectations. Yadda, Yadda, Yadda, ho hum, ho hum, it's off to 'work' we go... again. His zest for bringing new blood into a broken artery will soon be replaced by his disdain for my own expectations and experience. Then, the Hell that is waiting for me will be unleashed due to another's dumber than shit decisions that occurred this past weekend that circumvented the entire organization's directives.

Oops. I shouldn't question a man in a suit. STFU. Apparently, corporate america hasn't had enough of me ... yet. I imagine that I'll be told directives, shown pie charts, reminded of chains of command and given a 'mutually understood' agreement that non-compliance to the rules will result in some type of punishment or, *gasp* termination. Please. Really? I plan on carrying into this farce of a meeting a copy of my personal resume that will most likely scare the bejezzus out of the one who calls himself my superior.

How long must this bullshit go on? How long must I play by the rules of corporate structure and those placed in power who would be better at barking for the Yak Lady at the Loudoun County Fair? (I speak to you, David, Mr. F&B guy... you make people like me appear as genius (which I am) while you further dig your hole to obscurity).

Now... whew ... I'd like to change gears a bit. However, the topic of controlling, self-loving , grandiose individuals remains the same.

Doctor's office receptionists .... what a fuckin' waste of time it is to talk to these people. Apparently, a high school diploma and one semester a community college studying bookkeeping or medical transcription is enough to steer a patient away from answers and, more importantly, needed medication.

Since when... nevermind... dumb start to a dumb question...

So, doctors now rely on office note-takers to dispense medical advice and rely on their own judgement as to when seeing the doctor, or simply speaking to a nurse... a fucking nurse.... is necessary.

A bit more background... my wife, love of my life, soulmate and best part of me was just today given a diagnoses as having Lyme disease. After my joke of 'will you be tangy when I lick you?' I learned that the receptionist ... yes, the one trained to answer a phone.... told my wife that she can see her doctor in two weeks at an additional cost of $150. A visit that will consist of, get this, picking up a prescription to treat her condition.

1). Two Weeks.
2). $150
3). It was a fucking receptionist. Not a nurse, not the doctor, but a woman who's lot in life is to record the practice's voicemail message and accept credit cards for payment when insurance says, "This place isn't worthy of coverage by our company."

Red flag. By the way, I'm a bit pissed off, can you tell? Controlling others through smiling intimidation, whether a receptionist or employer just doesn't sit well with me.

How long, how long must this bullshit go on? The answer is right in front of us.... always has been and always will be.... The bullshit will go on as long as we allow it to go on. It's about control. Who has the control? You? Me? A dumbass receptionist? A shit for brains F&B director?

The answer is easy and hard to swallow.... the only one who has control of circumstances in ones' life is the one living it. That's you. That's me. Done, end of story. The bullshit ends when we claim our lives as our own, despite the circumstances.

Bluntly, fuck those who disagree. My life, your life, is not their domain. I want answers now and medications now for my wife so that she can be healthy and happy. Not two weeks and $150 later. Yes, fuck that.

I also want to be taken seriously for who I am and what I've done and can do by those who apparently view me as nothing more than a number not wearing a suit. Put me in a suit, I own you. Test me mentally, you will wither away in a heap of dung piled with beetles (not you, the reader, but those who claim to have superiority over me).

I rarely speak this way. I never, ever, toot my horn because, quite frankly, I'm not as limber as I once was... haha.

But enough is enough. How long must this bullshit go on? No longer for me. Or, my wife. Or, for anyone else I care about.

I call you to the mat, control. You and your minions who smile to my face while plotting my demise. As another wonderful, insightful comedian, Steve Martin, once said in 'Planes, Trains and Automobiles', .... 'You're fucking with the wrong guy...."

Amen. So let it be written, so let it be done. And, oh yeah, holy shit.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Yelps from the Closet: Flabbergasted and Humbled.

Yelps from the Closet: Flabbergasted and Humbled.: Odd. Very Odd. A bit disturbing but at the same time quite enlightening. Last night I wrote a blog in a moment of personal weakness. Rar...

Flabbergasted and Humbled.

Odd.

Very Odd. A bit disturbing but at the same time quite enlightening.

Last night I wrote a blog in a moment of personal weakness. Rarely do I exhibit personal weakness unless I attenpt to carry Pam over my shoulder, in which case due to my short stature and her added height she drags her knuckles and feet as I carry her off to the bedroom so that I can let her have her way with me.

However, last night I penned, or fingered (outta the gutter, people), a blog that showed me in a place that few, if any, every see me being. I'm not sorry I wrote it. On the contrary. It seems that maybe my weakness and thoughts of stupidity hit a note, a chord or an off-key kazoo resonance with more than a few.

Odd.

Out of all the crap that I write about... the inane, the rants, the reflections, the delusions of grandeur ... this one blog has somehow garnered more reads, worldwide, than any other I've written.

Never would I have thought that my writing about weakness and self-effacment would cause so many to both lend support and share their own weaknesses.

Dammit, people, you have given me hope and.... I hesitate to say this without reference to Steve Martin... a special purpose. Maybe, somehow, in some way, my struggles to survive despite myself resonate with like-minded, or should I say, 'strong-minded yet seeking' people.

Tonight, the klonopin bottle is safely stored and my only vices are wine and a sense of self that hovers between superiority and inferiority. That's not to say that the struggle is over. But, it means that for tonight, at least, the afterlife is safe from my rants about why ghosts always wear boots on "Ghost Hunters" and how I should invest in a pair of Tony Lama's so that those after my demise will know I'm walking around on stairs and unusually creaky floors.

It's still odd that my writing a blog about life and death struggles within my own mind causes such a spike in readership. Or, maybe it's not that odd at all. Maybe I'm but a voice among the multitudes worldwide that also sense within themselves something special, unique and largely unrecognized.

If that is the case, fret not. Don't worry about me. I'm going to be ok no matter what befalls me in life, and death. And, so will you. Don't question how I know this, just know that I know this.

Life is a journey... a journey seemingly set on I-95 with big rigs and dumbass drivers bent on going nowhere fast. Oh yeah, don't forget the occasional rest area and blue light in the mirror. These things only slow us down and cause us to curse, piss and buy a Moon Pie... not necessarily in that order.

You are me. I am you and we are all the same. My struggles are yours and your struggles are mine and your reading my blog while wondering if I twisted that bottle top is something we all do because we all know that eternity awaits us all in some fashion. Be it worm-riddled corpse or energy moving amongst the cosmos (my own interpretation), we all gain some sense of self in reading or hearing another's struggles.

So, read on. I'll continue to struggle. Happy one day, wishing to not wake up the next. Just like you. I'm priveledged to be you, if even for a few moments if it helps you be who you are meant to be.

Just don't twist the lid. Stupid is as stupid does.

Amen and Holy Shit.



Sunday, July 15, 2012

Yelps from the Closet: Dear Jesse Jackson Junior....

Yelps from the Closet: Dear Jesse Jackson Junior....: Dear Jesse Jackson Junior.... or J3, Triple J or The Jackson 3.... I'm there with ya. As much as I believe that your dad is a self-effacin...

Dear Jesse Jackson Junior....

Dear Jesse Jackson Junior.... or J3, Triple J or The Jackson 3....

I'm there with ya. As much as I believe that your dad is a self-effacing, grandiose slimeball bent on alienating mankind due to race and religious beliefs, I applaud your personal decision to seek help for your mental disorder.

You're not alone. Believe it or not, we white people also have mental issues. If we didn't, we wouldn't be supporting your recovery right now.

Just kidding. That was said to get a rise out of your dad. It's been obvious for years that he needs mental evaluation and quite a bit of therapy to overcome his didain for the pigment-less population,

I hope you emerge from your time spent working jigsaw puzzles and taking B-12 injections with a newfound appreciation for all of the populace ... white, black, male, female, gay and straight... and realize that just like you, we are all fucked up in your god's eyes but equal just the same.

Time for your jello cup and lithium.

Hurry back.

Yelps from the Closet: A bit too personal, perhaps?

Yelps from the Closet: A bit too personal, perhaps?: As a victim of manic depression, I have but one thing to exclaim.... People. What a fuckin' waste of skin. Yeah, I said it. That means y...

A bit too personal, perhaps?

As a victim of manic depression, I have but one thing to exclaim....

People. What a fuckin' waste of skin.

Yeah, I said it. That means you. And me.

Let me begin this tirade by simply saying that I'm tired. Not tired from baling hay or shoveling shit or any other worthwhile occupation. I'm tired of living in a world full of stupidity, self-absorbedness and hypocrisy.

That's not to say I've not exhibited any of these traits at one time or another. Sure, Pam and the Loudoun County Sheriff's department can attest to my stupidity. I consider myself a whiz at trivia and I am one of the masters of the 'do as I say, not as I do' philosophy.

But really, I'm tired. Not just, 'gimme a klonopin and let me sleep', kinda tired, It's more of a 'gimme a bottle of klonopin, bottle of vodka and a porn site to drift off to' kinda tired.

How much bullshit can the world dish out before we all ask ourselves the ultimate question? 'How can I go on?'

Thankfully, I have a friend who has endured much, much more than I could even comprehend enduring. No, wait a second.,... that didn't sound just right. Let me rephrase that.... I have a friend that has endured much, much more than I can imagine having to ever endure. Thankfully, she's my friend.

Yet, she persistently survives. And encourages. She knows my struggles and understands my frustrations. How, I have no clue. Ok, yeah I do... she's just like me, except stronger and a bit more voluptuous, but not by much.  To be honest, ..... nevermind..... let me just say that her words just once have kept me from twisting a bottletop from left to right and counting the moments that energy meets eternity.

Thank you, Elisabeth.

However, that was yesterday and today my mind still whirls with activity. I was quite aptly reminded just this evening that I was playing a game on my computer, a game on my iPhone and watching television all at the same time as a dumbass director at my place of employment was circumventing the rules and harassing a wonderful employee. All this while I composed an email to management stating that if said management couldn't follow the rules then I would be quite vocal and be a thorn in the white-collar wing-tips. Oh yeah, I would. Fuck 'em. I gave up being a pawn to white-collar politics quite a while back.

But, that's not really the issue here. The issue is fatigue. Namely, my fatigue. I write to stave off fatigue with life. I write to escape the entrapment of mundane life. I write to hopefully fall asleep before I decide that what I'm writing doesn't matter any more than I matter.

You see.... I'm not nice. I'm not smart. Sure, I have an IQ higher than most, but I'm not smart. I'm not sane and I'm not worthy of the unconditional love that only a few have ever shown. Yet, here I am. Why? Really, why?

Oh sure, I could go into self-pity mode. But I won't. This isn't self-pity, this is realism. This is a place that we have either all reached or all will one day reach. The difference is that not everyone has a bottle of klonopin handy when they reach that point. The test of life is how far are we willing to twist that bottle cap on a day that tests us. Will we say, 'enough'. Or will we say, 'fuck you."

I say, ..................................................................................................................'fuck you'

Maybe tomorrow will be better and my thinking clearer. Maybe I'll be just a tad bit more sane.
Maybe not.

In which case I'll ask myself that question again. And I'll wait for the answer.

Enjoy your sanity as you read the words of one who struggles.

Goodnight.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Yelps from the Closet: Purpose in a Bottle.

Yelps from the Closet: Purpose in a Bottle.: Purpose. We all have one. We all need one. But, well, most of us don't know what the hell ours is. I'm one among most. I always joke that my...

Purpose in a Bottle.

Purpose. We all have one. We all need one. But, well, most of us don't know what the hell ours is. I'm one among most. I always joke that my special purpose is similar to Navin Johnson's special purpose. For those uninitiated in classic movie culture, Navin M. Johnson was 'The Jerk'... aptly portrayed by Steve Martin. A character to which most all can in one way or another can relate.

Yet, purpose is more than a penis...sadly.

Despite the fact that a penis with vim and vigor can surely stand in for a special purpose for many, or at least some, of the male population, it doesn't hold the same meaning for most females and otherwise unendowed individuals.

So, we must look at purpose in an entirely different context. I may at times to seem as if I'm rambling in this entry.... that is solely due to my search for purpose. Just kidding. I have a reason for writing this, I just can't quite find the words.

I'll try anyway. As is best for me, I'll try and elaborate through personal circumstance.

I bartend. At first thought, it would appear that my purpose is to inebriate and wipe away the horrors of the day from those I serve. That seems about right. Yet, it isn't quite on the mark. Many view me as the servant, the one available to make them a drink, to cater to their need for justification to wash away a bad day, year, week, marriage, whatever.... I'm nothing more than a pair of arms which can hold a glass, pour a drink and present a bill. I'm lower in the food chain than they are despite my having a genius IQ and quite a firm hold on the art of sarcasm and reverse psychology.

Those aren't my purposes though. My purposes in this particular juncture in life are to make someone smile and forget those troubles. And, if they are still to consider me less of a person because I'm simply serving their vices, to put them a notch or twelve lower whether they realize it or not. Now, that's quite a feeling.

Time and again I hear people contemplating their purpose and, quite frankly, it makes me feel good. Not that these people are searching, but that these people are searching. Think about it.

A bartender sees and hears everything. A good bartender can relate to everything. Read my blog. I'm a fucking great bartender. Yet, I still search for purpose.

Want to discuss quantum physics? Let's do it. Want to discuss a failed relationship? I'm in. Want to know what love really is? I can and will tell you. Want to order a Blue Hawaiian with A Mustache? Tell me what's in it.... my purpose isn't to know what every freakin' drink is composed of. But, my purpose might be to realize and understand what I'm composed of and help another realize what they are composed of just by listening for a minute...

Alcohol, it can be devisive, pervasive and troublesome. I pour emotion, not alcohol.

We all pour purpose. We just have to know what purpose doesn't give us a headache the next day.

*I'm Jeffrey Brunk, and I endorse this message*... like it or not.

Yelps from the Closet: And, so it is written, so let it be done. Please.

Yelps from the Closet: And, so it is written, so let it be done. Please.: "...... and the Lord saieth, "Lord? Lord? C'mon, this is 2012. Lord? In what century are you living?" "But," the masses responded, "this i...

And, so it is written, so let it be done. Please.

"...... and the Lord saieth, "Lord? Lord? C'mon, this is 2012. Lord? In what century are you living?"

"But," the masses responded, "this is what you are called in our book.... you are called 'Lord'... so therefore, we call you 'Lord', because, after all, you wrote that book."

"Uh, nah..." saieth the one formerly referred to as 'Lord'..."I didn't write that book. Some guys bent on controlling your emotions and ...well, your wallets, they wrote that book.Good intentions and all that... But, hell ,whoops, bad word, sorry, well, you know what they say about good intentions."

"Hold on, just a sec .... " the people responded. "If this is true, then how are we to know that everything we hear isn't true? You mean to imply that Liberty Mutual isn;t really that concerned about our family and the family finances after we pass on in4to the kingdom of Heaven?"

"Did I mention anything about the 'Kingdom of Heaven'", saieth the One formerly known as the 'Lord'.

"Well, no... not really... but, well, I figured that Liberty Mutual really does have a vested interest in my family's well-being after I die. Are you saying that isn't the case?"

"No, no... not at all," saieth the OFKATL (acronyms, people). "What I'm saying is that 'Lord' is an archaic term used to describe a man of leadership... which also implies that you, my friends, are serfs, servants, followers.... incapable of choosing for yourselves what you do, think and believe. What type of 'Lord' or, lets lay this down... ''Son of God', the creator of everything, the one who is expressed as having made you in 'His' image, would want you to be any less of a being than 'He' is by being subservient and referring to him as 'Lord'? Really... you humans... so searching for something that has always been within you..."

"Hmmmmm..... you're freaking me out, Looo.... I mean, ...uhhh....what shou;d I call you?"

"Call me 'You' ... There isn't a 'Lord'. There isn't one to whom you must bow...  geez... those days have passed. That damned book and it's wording. It's tough enough to understand lyrics in todays music... how can you expect to comprehend the wording of a book written by men hundreds of years ago? Men, who by the way, were bent on controlling everyone through fear by using verbage? My god...ooops, my bad... my goodness, It's as bad as the Arizona legislature's view of immigration. No better, no worse. Fear and Loathing in a book penned by a king. Sound familiar?"

"Brain fodder. But what about Liberty Mutual's claim of no-hassle burials and security for my family after I'm placed six feet under? Isn't that the same thing? Instilling fear through advertising?"

"Yes.... yes it is..." saith TOFKATL. (Acronyms, people.)

Amen and Holy Shit.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Yelps from the Closet: "Buncha Racist, Judgemental Asses You Are" - Yoda

Yelps from the Closet: "Buncha Racist, Judgemental Asses You Are" - Yoda: Hola, muchachas. That's about all of the Arizona english I know unless I'm at Taco Bell. I also know how to say 'Achtung Baby' in U2 english...

"Buncha Racist, Judgemental Asses You Are" - Yoda

Hola, muchachas. That's about all of the Arizona english I know unless I'm at Taco Bell. I also know how to say 'Achtung Baby' in U2 english, 'Flied Lice' in Chinese english and 'Helllo, this is the Dell PC service hotline" in Indian english. Add that to 'How... smoke'em peace pipe' in Native American Indian english and 'Welcome to my Hauose' in canadian english, lest we not forget 'Hey y'all, let's shoot sumpin' and eat it for dinner' in southern American english.... Oops... I almost forgot... extended arm from window and raised finger directed to tailgating minivan mom... spoken in Northern Virginia english.

Know what this makes me? Take a guess. How do you feel right now? Go ahead, say it. C'mon, you know you want to say it. Sure, you bet, it makes me a seemingly inconsiderate, racist, judgemental asshole. If this was your answer, congratulations. You got it right. Know why you got it right? Because you were able to see yourself in one or more of the very positions I just described. Welcome to humanity..... or, as I prefer to call it, the Asshole Club. No matter your locale, race, creed or political affiliation (an entire different subject), you've either mocked, belittled or directed judgement towards someone unlike yourself.

What makes us so judgemental of others? I ask myself this often as I sit at a traffic signal and glance at those around me. Is it because any one of these people has ever done anything to me that has caused me harm? Is it because I was served a cold Big Mac from McDonalds (thanks Rosita... I'll remember that the next time I pay in rupees)...?

No. No, I say. What makes us judgemental of others is our inability.... nay.... our unwillingness, to see others as equals to ourselves. The funny thing is, this applies to everyone, no matter how fucked up someone may be. I bet Hitler not only hated Jews for their beliefs but also for their stoicism and those tiny little hats. Today, Hitler would slow to a stop at a traffic signal, look to his left (he was always in the slow lane), and automatically react with judgement towards the bearded guy wearing eyeglasses, driving an HVAC repair truck simply because the bearded guy was driving under the speed limit in the left lane.

Ok, so I'll maybe give Hitler that one .... or maybe not. Is that a reason to judge? We have all done it. Let's use the bearded HVAC guy as an example, shall we? Driving slow in the fast lane. How many times have we bitched, yelled, flashed lights, raised our fingers and called someone a dumbass or asshole simply because they delayed our trip to the next traffic signal by a matter of seconds?

Just me? Nah. I know one or two people who have done so.

Yet, here's the kicker... we are happy when that speeding dumbass gets stopped at the very same light we ease up to. It's a feeling of justification. A feeling of equality. 'You, dumbass, got what you deserved and where did it get ya.?'  Right? We feel better about ourselves because someone we felt was less intelligent, ugly, stupid, driving a car on a donut tire, whatever, had to stop beside us three seconds before we did.

This makes us 'equal'. 'You're no better than me, asshole.' 'The light stopped you and you have no control over the light'.

No control. Welcome to life. The main crux of the whole judgemental thinking mechanism. We have no control. Just because Mr. Patel's wife can cook up a mean curry doesn't mean that it's better than the venison that Bubba's baby mama can boil in the slow cooker. Just because some guy driving a Camry while wearing a turban passes you as you sport a Kangol cap in your Corvette (yeah, you, middle aged man) doesn't mean he has an issue with your religious beliefs.

Under that turban is a head of hair (albeit hair most likely in need of a shampoo... what? Am I perfec?) that covers a scalp that envelopes a skull that encases a brain that looks no different from yours, or mine, or anyone elses'... except for maybe Einstein, but he's an exception, you know, being from another planet and all....

Get it yet? I'm an asshole. So are you. And you, and you, and him and her and .... him (i think it's a him), and everyone else.

Go ahead, judge me. Call me names. Call everyone who annoys you a name. Let them get under your skin and let them be a small part of your day's pleasure as a result of their either being different or just stupid. Odds are that you are also a small part of someone else's pleasure each day... for reasons you'd take offense.

Aside from minivan moms with no regard for highway safety, there is no reason for us to speak harshly of anyone. Whether Christian, Muslim, Jew or Atheist (fuck, even you, Mormons and Scientologists ... Jeez) ... whether black, white, off-white, eyes that slant up or eyes that slant down (sorry, I can't remember the difference between Chinese and Japanese eyes), brown or yellow (i'm throwing a shout out to my alcohol-induced jaundiced friends), there is no difference between us. Unless of course you're a midget... then, well, there's a difference but only in stature and the pitch in our voices.

I jest, of course. I'm trying to make a point for crying out loud. My point being that I'm as bad at being judgemental as you are. Admit it, you're an asshole like I'm an asshole. We might not all be tight sphincters but we are all sphincters nonetheless. Loosen up people... let others live and don't be hating.

Tonight I witnessed a black guy with a groovy beard snatch up a $10 bill that I left as a tip for my bartender. I automatically said 'Hey, dude, put that ten bucks back down. I saw you pocket it...."
Turns out that he worked for the establishment and was playing around ...

Whether or not this is true, I don't know. What I do know is that I didn't know him.

Hello. My name is Jeff and I'm an asshole.
"Hiiiiii Jeff" ... (collective greeting...)

Thanks for the welcome to your club.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Yelps from the Closet: You, Me and We makes All.

Yelps from the Closet: You, Me and We makes All.: I'm not a proud man. I consider myself just an everyday schmo with a slightly twisted perspective and a middle toe unusually longer than the...

You, Me and We makes All.

I'm not a proud man. I consider myself just an everyday schmo with a slightly twisted perspective and a middle toe unusually longer than the rest of the toes onboth feet. Oh yeah, I also am a bit of a visionary with a penchant for being quite the procrastinator.

Yet, despite my procrastinating tenedncies, I think I need to make a few things clear to you, the reader. These things are quite obvious to some, horrendous to others and worthy of judgement to eternal damnation to a few. Yet, here I am. Fingers pecking away... one broken and deformed, the other a leader, two-finger typing away at 2:39 in the morning with yet another thought that has crossed my mind and will remain there unless I dismiss it upon the world.

Know what? I have a few things that need to be said, expressed, shouted and verbalized to those who know me and those who don't. Some know me as Jeff. Some know me as Jeffrey, son, husband, brother, *ahem" father, bartender, asshole, loudmouth, .... whatever. Call me what you will. I don't care. I really don't care at all. But, if you must call me a word, call me 'you'. Because 'you' is what I am. 'You' this... 'You' that.... I'm just 'you. Nothing more, nothing less.

I'm not an 'I' because 'I' would suggest I'm better in some way that 'you'. I'm just 'you'. Like it or not.
I say things that piss people off. You will think before doing that type thing.
I consider myself one of you. You wouldn't dare dream of that.
I dream big, fail often and admit my failures. You would rather die than admit failure.
I like hotel sex. Okay, so do you.

I make mistakes seemingly every moment of every day. In thought, action and speech. You would never admit to such a thing, would you, you?
I can never realize my potential but you.... you... you do everything right to make your potential a reality. Don't you?

I'm you, right? Just call me 'You'. Because I fail. Because I can never be who 'You' are supposed to be. Because 'You' is a misnomer and is nothing more than a title given to another who isn't 'me'.

But 'we' .... we all like hotel sex. Yes. Yes, 'We' do.

'You' had better damed believe it.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Yelps from the Closet: Drunks, Family and Dumbass Impatient Shitwads

Yelps from the Closet: Drunks, Family and Dumbass Impatient Shitwads: I told myself I wouldn't do this. I keep my personal life public and my public life personal. Yet, this has been one helluva wacky week. T...

Yelps from the Closet: Drunks, Family and Dumbass Impatient Shitwads

Yelps from the Closet: Drunks, Family and Dumbass Impatient Shitwads: I told myself I wouldn't do this. I keep my personal life public and my public life personal. Yet, this has been one helluva wacky week. T...

Drunks, Family and Dumbass Impatient Shitwads

I told myself I wouldn't do this. I keep my personal life public and my public life personal. Yet, this has been one helluva wacky week.

Truth be told, I'm nowhere near perfect. As a matter of fact, I'm about as screwed in the head and gut as any one person can be. However, I placed myself in a position, a job, profession, whatever the hell you care to deem it, in order to not only keep my own sanity but maybe bring a bit of sanity to those I come in contact with.

Ok, ok... so the ones I come in contact with are drinking. And the profession I've migrated into is 'bartender', 'bar manager', 'intoxicologist'..... whatever. The profession is a far cry from what I once did and who I once was. But that's irrelevant and national security prevents me from elaborating.

Yet, I begin every shift, every day, with the intention of making someone smile, laugh or feel better, despite their circumstances, as the warm nectar of life glides through their lower intestines before finding its' way back into the brain, rendering it useless.

Hell, I do unto others as I'd do unto myself. It's the golden tequila rule, right?

I consider myself a provider. I provide a respite from a hard day's work. A respite from a relationship's delicate moments. A respite from life and its' bullshit.

Yet, despite my best intentions... my best attempts to foster a smile or happy evening, there is always one who either begins the day with an attitude of haughtiness or wants to end the night with an attitude of haughtiness. Ones who deem others, including myself, as less than themselves... in my case, a servant, a knave, a being to be spat upon as one would expect in a Monty Python skit.

This has happened to me thrice, that's three times for the unititiated, this week. Twice, it was due to alcohol. I'm ok with that. Alcohol is the great deciever... it makes men invincible and Snooki do-able.

But once, just yesterday, it made one gentleman, nay, gentleman is an overstatement, a complete asshole. Not because he drank too much, but because he expected me to be his servant. To be at his beck and call. Horror of horrors, he had to wait a matter of minutes before he was offered his third Crown Royal and Seven-Up. Woo. What kind of big shot drinks Crown and 7 anyway?
Yet, this dick of dicks, a man of means, apparently, who viewed me as slow, incompetent and unworthy of caring for his cheap alcoholic needs, berated me for leaving him to palm a glass of ice as I tended to others and  their needs.

This, of course, brought to mind others in my past who expected the same, minus the Crown Royal but just as cold with icy veins.

The images of self-deprication and words, 'I'm perfect. You're not' flooded into my brain, filling me with that unholy yet ungodly elation of mania as I bit my lip. Yes, I bit my lip. The thoughts I had as this cheap-smelling, tattooed man wearing a shirt purchased at K-Mart smacking of the worst Nat Nast knockoff, asked for his check, left no tip and eyed me with a look of contempt were bursting from my overzealous mind. I stared him in the eye and visually dared him to push me further into the abyss which is the smartass, intellectual self that I am. I could have easily placed him firmly in the IQ range of 80- that he obviously belongs.... but, I didn't. He did that to himself.

Just as those before him in my life have so easily and readily done, he placed himself in a position of not being able to respond to reason and humility.

Working a bar isn't always fun. As a matter of fact, working a bar is a way of remembering not only who I am but what I've become. It's a wake-up call. And, it's a wake up call for those who challenge me when I firmly say, ".....you, you're done, get the fuck outta my bar. No one talks to me that way. Not now, not ever...."

I like people. I love stories. I have a helluva story myself. But, respect ... respect is a two way street and Main street is a one way street. Think about it and act accordingly. I'll call ya on it otherwise, like it or not. Customer or not. Family or not.

Life is a bar and we're all looped on an idea of some sort. Sleep it off and see me tomorrow. I'll still be here and I'll still welcome you back to my bar.

Cheers.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Yelps from the Closet: Answers, Please

Yelps from the Closet: Answers, Please: So, here I am. Again, awake, wide awake, at 12:30AM. I'm in no way sleepy, tired or ready to retire to my peaceful klonopin-induced slumber....

Answers, Please

So, here I am. Again, awake, wide awake, at 12:30AM. I'm in no way sleepy, tired or ready to retire to my peaceful klonopin-induced slumber.

"12:30," you say. That's early. Well, yes it is. Early to me as well when I'm used to being up until 3 or 4 writing, pondering and questioning everything from my own existence to why my dog has to lay right between my legs each and every night.

I'm 48 years old. In societal norms, I'm supposed to have been asleep for at least two hours by now since I'd have to be awakened by a godawful alarm clock at the crack of dawn that beckoned me to start my day. In societal world, I'd be up and out the door, dressed for success, so to speak, by 7:00am in order to make it to my lavishly decorated cubicle by 9:00am.

Yet, that world doesn't exist for me. In another life, it was my existence, but not now. Now, I sit awake on the bed, fully awake as my wife slumbers beside me. She understands. She tolerates.

My mind cannot rest. It turns and spins. It jumps from topics as diverse as quantum physics to things as inane as who played 'Tootie' in the 80's sitcom, "The Facts of Life". All in a single, swift motion. And more amazingly, I can both understand the physics of gravitational pull and how it affects time and space while knowing that Kim Fields was 'Tootie'... and that Mindi Cohn was Natalie, a fact I try to forget, but can't.

Yet, while all of this bounces around in my skull, I try and try and try to grasp the importance of my being and why I seem so different than most others. I don't consider myself special by any means. As a matter of fact, my self-image is quite opposite. Yet, I can't fathom the idea of living the life of a typical, suburban, urban or otherwise 'normal' man.

There's nothing special about me, mind you. Except for the idea that I'm the guy in line behind you at the supermarket who chuckles when you scan your canteloupe and the register instructs you to "Please move your MELONS to the belt," I try to consider myself the everyday kind of guy... minus the mini-van and dumbass stick-figure stickers on the back window.

Then again, I do understand quantum physics. I do know how numbers comprise every element of the universe and I can give a logical, yet debatable, explanation as to how humankind has brought itself to the brink of extinction due to hubris and a false sense of security brought on by religion and greed.

Then again, here I sit. It's now 1:00AM. And the thoughts continue. It's maddening. And if I weren't already beyond the point of self-comprehension, I'd be questioning my thoughts.

A vicious cycle this is. But, it's worth the maddening influx of thought. Because really, who wants to be 'normal'? Who wants to be the one who keeps up with the Jones's, so to speak? Who longs to have their identity stripped from them for the sake of image and career? Honestly, almost everyone. And it's quite sad that so many do sacrifice mind and self for approval.

I long for approval. But, not for what I've become, but for who I am ... a flawed, skewed, sarcastic, imperfect yet quite perceptive, intelligent and insightful individual.

Quite a wish list. Only a few can claim to be Santa and fill my stocking with more than coal and the occasional orange. But I do appreciate those few and I do appreciate those of you who read this rambling man's thoughts and grasp what I'm saying. To you, I say "Booyah"... you are picking up what I'm putting down.

To the rest, think. Slow down. Stop a moment or twelve and grasp your crotch while sensing who you are, what you do and what you're meant to do. If you can do that and figure it all out, let me know. Really. I need to know how you did it.

It's 1:15AM. Mr. Drummond on 'Diff'rent Strokes' was played by Conrad Bain and the idea that an alternate universe on the flipside of an existing wormhole is an antriguing combination of thoughts.

.................................. on to the next....................

Sunday, June 17, 2012

In a day....

.... you can all at once realize who you are, who you were and who you can be.

Yelps from the Closet: A Day For the Ball-Scratchers

Yelps from the Closet: A Day For the Ball-Scratchers: Greetings. It is 2:15am on Sunday, June 17, 2012. It is officially the 'holiday' regarded as Father's Day. For all of the men reading this w...

A Day For the Ball-Scratchers

Greetings. It is 2:15am on Sunday, June 17, 2012. It is officially the 'holiday' regarded as Father's Day. For all of the men reading this who are fathers, dads or otherwise have offspring roaming the earth as a result of a moment of passion resulting in a gutteral 'Uuuuughhh, shit baby!', this day is for you.

As anyone who has followed my ramblings here knows, I'm a father. Of course, depending on who you ask, the term father is all relative. But, nonetheless, I have two children. Whether I'm loved or hated isn't the issue. The idea is that despite any and all circumstances, hard feelings, mistakes, disrespect, more mistakes, harsh words, harsher writings, disassociation... all of the above and probably more .... I still love my children unconditionally. And, my friends, that is not always easy for a father to do. Nor is it any easier for a child of a less-than-perfect father.

Mother's Day is a no-brainer. Hell, here is a person that went through enormous agony to bring into the world another human being, fully knowing that the very human being that emerged from her loins covered in mayonnaise, connected by a rope and wrinkled beyond recognition would one day do everything in his or her power to belittle, overpower and relish in the joy of her very existence being brought to it's knees over the keys to a car or a need for $20 for a visit to Subway.

But, Father's Day.... father's day .... daddy day ... a day devoted to a man who's contribution to a child's beginning of life consisted of a contorted face, stiff back and a muffled ''uuuuuggghhhh...errrggghhh".... while the swimmers were released to invade and bring forth life to an otherwise happy and content dozen or so Eggland's Best... a day which is mostly overlooked and relegated to a card from the growing swimmers, or their fountain (mom) and the opportunity to sit before the television, hand upon crotch, beer within reach and a bit of quiet which is really not what the father wants at all.

Stop me if I'm off base. Better yet, don't stop me. Because this isn't a blasting or 'woe is me' blog about my relationship with my own children. What happens with them now or in the future is anyone's guess and I'm a bit fatigued with the guessing part of the equation. This isn't about me, or them, in the least.

This is about a single man who is the epitome of fatherhood and an example of a father, a man, a husband, a friend, a human being that I can only dare dream to be or become.

This is about my own father. Sure, growing up there were plenty of times that I either resented, feared or was even embarrassed by him. Go figure, a kid embarassed by a father. Who woulda thought?
But now, now as an adult, as I look at the man that he is, I recognize that his imperfections were what made him perfect. My appreciation of his imperfectections were tempered by his love for me, no matter what stupid things I did and said.

Was he the perfect dad? No. Is he the perfect father? No. Is there a perfect father? No. Is he the and was he the perfect father to me despite his imperfections as they related to my own? Absolutely. An imperative yes.

I have watched over the last several years as he has humbled himself tremendously to care for his wife, my mother, as she has endured surgery after surgery. He has washed her feet. He has helped her dress herself. He has sat tirelessly at her bedside as she labored for her own life in the hospital. But at no time did he ever become less of a father to me or my sister. He was always there for us just as he has always been there for us, despite his own circumstances.

This is something I've failed to do myself and I'm ashamed to admit it. However, I'm also proud to recognize that my father, Rollis Gene Brunk, is the man I one day hope to be for my own kids, my wife, my grandkids and any and all pets (including a possible turtle, who knows?) in the future.

Sure, he drifts off to sleep while watching Fox News. Who doesn't? But he drifts off to sleep content with himself ans somewhere, deep down inside his soul, he knows he's done a good job as a father, despite my mistakes, ideals and everything else that makes me, me.

Unconditional love. That is what Father's Day means to me. Thank you Dad. I love you, respect you and will always remember that one day many, many years ago when I sat upon the porch of our small house in Winston-Salem, feeling depressed, and you sat beside me, placed your hand on my shoulder and said, "so, why are you feeling blue?" 

Happy Fathers Day.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

What a Day, Eh?


"What? C'mon! Are you a pussy?"

The words are etched into my brain. Not because I was berated myself but because I actually uttered these words to my then fourteen-year-old son as I proudly brandished my newly purchased 16-inch Bowie knife.

"C'mon, just hold it. It's cool!"

But it was the sentence before that remains etched into his brain as the defining characteristic of the father he didn't know anymore.

I often write, joke and bandy about the condition rambling around in my head. Bi-Polar, Manic-depression, whatever you want to call it. I usually try to justify each and every past action in my life that resulted in consequences that haunt me based upon my condition. Sure, I still have no clue why I was tossed out of one establishment, punched a wall and to this day have a broken finger. I understand that high doses of anti-depressants mixed with alcohol can have a quite humbling effect in the morning when you wake up on the floor of a jail cell in a bright orange suit and some dude staring at you like the next meal.

But, there is only one instance that replays in my mind as the one in which I lost my best friend, my best buddy, my son. "What? C'mon! Are you a pussy?"

Today I went, alone, to my son's high school graduation ceremony. He had no idea that I was there or was even going to be there. In fact, I labored over the idea of going at all. My son has no interest in me, in having a relationship with me or at the very least returning a text. In my eyes, my son, my former best friend, hates me with a passion... a passion fueled by both a condition he doesn't understand (nor do I, entirely), and a former family that views me as a hindrance.

As I sat in the auditorium, just three rows behind my former wife, her family, my daughter and newcomers to the brood, I didn't feel anger or resentment. Even I was shocked at that revelation. What I felt was remorse at alienating a boy without having any idea that I'd even done so.

I read emails each day from people who also suffer from bi-polar disorder and I get angry at the 'poor pitiful me' 'boo-hoo' attitudes that most bring to a wide audience. Know what? Grow a pair and deal with it. I understand it's difficult. Most days, I regret at least one thing I've said or done during the day. Depression is as defeating as mania is elating. The difference is that mania brings on the 'I'm invincible, I can do, say or act as I please... damn the consequences' mindset. This is where I was when I uttered "What? C'mon! Are you a pussy?" to my son.

I can't take the words back. Nor can I take back the tear I shed when his name was called and he crossed the stage to be handed his diploma. For the first fourteen years of his life, I helped mold him into the man he is today. And even the sentence I uttered some four years ago that is etched into his brain has made him stronger in some way, even at the expense of our relationship. But, I can't help but wonder where we would be if my mouth, mind and actions didn't succumb to the mania within me.

Congratulations on your graduation, Avery. I hope that one day you'll see that I'm not the monster I'm portrayed to be by others and that a brief moment in time, be it days, weeks or months, doesn't erase the bond that you and I once shared and hopefully will one day regain.

You're my best buddy. I'm always here for you. No matter what. Love ya, man.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Holy War, Batman!

It was an inevitablility. In what has been described as the new 'Holy War', the unesteemed Reverend Fred (Fab Freddy) Phelps of the Westboro Baptist Church has declared, through seemingly unscrupulous, yet devoutly Christian attorneys, a lawsuit against North Carolina espouser of 'biblical troofs' Chuck (Gimme Da Bucks) Worley due to the Reverend Worley's recent anti-gay sermons and suggestions that gays and lesbians should be fenced and forced to die off due to the inability to reproduce.

"This is unacceptable!", exclaimed Phelps. "It is obvious that Chuck has drawn inspiration from the Westboro congregation and my own messages of hatred for those our God hates. I first had the inspiration to not only build a camp for degenerates to slowly expire from this life but to also place a bounty, or 'Soul Exchange Fee', if you will, on anyone supporting the degenerate lifestyle. What Chuck has done is usurp my ideas, put my devoted congregation in a position of demotion in the eyes of our loving, yet judgemental Lord, and therefor reduce the income of Westboro Baptist Church by hundreds if not tens of hard-earned dollars."

"It is due to this travesty of hypocrisy within our belief system that we are announcing a multi-thousand dollar lawsuit against the Reverend Worley and his backwoods, idea-stealing congregation. In lieu of potential losses that will undoubtedly cancel both the Westboro and Worley congregational covered-dish meals of KFC and green beans for a period of weeks, I challenge Chucky to come forth and proclaim his disregard for God's plan to allow Westboro Baptist Church lead the crusade to eradicate idiocy and religious cruelty from our society."

In response, Pastor Worley denounced Phelp's lawsuit and derogatory comments while telling news outlets that he had been contemplating the idea of fencing in homosexuals since first watching Schindler's List several years ago. Declining to comment on Phelp's allegations, Worley simply threw his head back, raised his arms to the side and began swaying in Axl Rose fashion while chanting in a low, muffled voice a song that vaguely resembled 'It's Raining Men'.

In what will surely be viewed by most as a Godly war between loving, accepting pastors and congregants, this promises to become an ugly example of religious intolerance, which is quite rare and never experienced due to the Universal Love and Acceptance policies that each religion is sworn to uphold.

In the meantime, Pastor Worley today announced that the local 84 Lumber Supply outley has rolls of chickenwire on sale for $1.36 per square yard.

Amen.