Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Solaris Syndrome

"Before you formed in the womb
"I knew you;
"Before you were born you were set apart
"To find me."


They told me not to come here. They said the sun's reflection off the Solaris ocean would burn out my eyes. They live in fear.

Now I'm here at the space station, I wonder and wander. When I was traveling I knew why I was coming, but having arrived I've lost my cause. My mind is blank. I live in fear.

If I return to Earth will I remember why I needed to come? Or did I never really need to in the first place? Is this the work of an outside entity or is this me? Who can understand?

Seems I came to find freedom in a prison. Men hold hope in leaving their doubts unspoken. Despair is the root of all philosophy. I can move neither forward nor backward; I must make up a dream.

Who can come to me here? Is there life beyond these walls? Do I dare hope the ocean is alive as some believe? Or are they making up a dream too? I both pray and deny life is more than what I see.


Is she who I hope she is? In my darkest hour do I find my greatest light? I feel I'm trying to grab snatches of fog. Looks so real until I try to take hold. Won't it disappear if I let go?

Can I trust her? They say she's made from the mass of Solaris. Is this what happens when you wander too far? I was determined to find...what? Her? But how? But, yes. I came here seeking she who did not exist. Was that not madness?

Madness. Mass. Mayhem. Morose. Mired. Marooned. Mute. Maimed. Misguided. Meditated. Myth. Miracle.

Is wisdom beyond me? She looks for the sun and sees me. Does she not know how I got here, that I came from nowhere? Maybe she's asking herself those same questions.

The other two are angry with me. They say my love is not real, my joy an illusion. For them, sympathy is a sin. Yet I too must know what's real.


I stand alone. The decision is mine. They won't tell me what they feel. Every mind here goes blank. Few speak with a script unwritten. The mirror comes for me.

To know what I want is easy: to be with her. Is knowing that enough? Something is alive that was not before. Only the cynicism of science demands a question of a miracle.

It is right I keep this alive. But does a stupid man deserve a miracle? I am exposed here for all to see. The wickedness I hide on Earth is laid bare if I stay under the Solaris sun.

Reasons for failure are infinite. Only one reason to succeed. Pride births men's shame. So easy to destroy, it's frightening. I feel nothing must happen to the Solaris ocean or we will perish. I can give no scientific proof of this fact.

In the light I see and am seen. Our love is glorious to behold. Questions in the dark are absent in the light. I speak to the other two to save them, to tell them it's alright to stay. Communication is what will save Mankind. How clear and obvious it is: life is life, that's all I need know.


Saturday, August 29, 2015

Gross Pointe Harry


Still don't get it, do you? I simply couldn't face you.

My Maker I can face. That Entity has been far less kind to me than you were.

Now I'm forever un-whole in a corporate containment cell.
I want to say Thank You.
Suicide, in any form, is never painless.

There I was, sitting alone behind that goddam computer screen and I realized, finally, for the first time in my life I fully trusted - fully needed - someone. I needed you day and night and forever. I didn't want you to marry, have friends or children, have a job that interested you or any interest outside of me. I wanted your whole life. I figured since I loved you so much I shouldn't see you again.

Then I broke down and disintegrated. As expected. The life force drained out of me, finding myself sitting entranced in an alley watching a dumpster on fire. I've never been a part of anything really. What was I going say? "I ate out of a trash can last night. Care for an evening out?"

I wasn't exactly raised in a loving environment, no trust at all. It's not an excuse, just an explanation. My soul was empty, it was up to me to fill it. I didn't want you to know I hadn't.


My life is a festival of humiliation. I was looking for some validation in my writing but I guess I came up short. So I do horrible jobs to degrade myself. I can give lots of bullshit reasons why but really you're encouraged to do it, you're trained do it and eventually...you get to like it.

Then I saw this abandoned kitten crying and it killed me and I realized we're all abandoned children in this world connected to all living things. I've been having recurring nightmares of futility five times a week for years. Who sleeps well on an exposed park bench? I'm more than mildly sprained.

So I'm asking you to take a deep breath and realize: this is me dying. I know what I do isn't exactly moral, per se. I can't ask you to forgive and forget and just accept. I can get the hell out of town - but I've nowhere to go without you. Hollow pointe wound care is all I see on the menu.



Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Half Life


this is beyond awful...this is hell
i'm swimming at the equator, chasing a dying sun
i can only swim as fast as the earth turns
if i stop or slow down i lose the sun and slip into darkness
if i don't stop to rest i die anyway
what do i do?
where can i go to live??
- nightly nightmare

"This is stupid," muttered Margaret, only half realizing she'd even spoken aloud. However stupid, she never for a second considered changing the channel in her vacuous Plano home as the flat screen blared its babble.
"I can't believe they got away, Lieutenant. Those two fucking punks rape a nun and never see a day behind bars. And your dumb ass still wants to tell me there's a God?"

"They didn't get get away. They're unconfessed. There's no escape until then."

"That's just stupid. Those two spics are back in Mexico, free as birds. No way we'll ever see them again. And you know what? They're going to do it again. I feel it in my bones. Tell me more about your God."

"I see you agree with me."

"What? Agree with you nothin'!"

"You agree they'll keep doing it until they confess. They have to confess or they'll never be free. One thing I can tell you is you have to be free."

"You know, Lieutenant, sometimes I wonder why you ever became a cop."

Click. Margaret was beyond annoyed, without knowing why. In insecure moments like this she did what she always did: she reviewed her clients' real estate listings online. However empty it ultimately made her feel, she clung to this routine, a worldly success she could point to as indisputable proof of the rightness of her life choices. It was most important to her to prove that point since her soul cried out otherwise.

No new emails. No bids. Nothing. She hoped against hope she'd get a bite any second. But it was late in the evening. People were busy. The world was turning. Margaret was anchored to her starving monitor, its light the only thing between her and the enclosing darkness. She perused a couple of news aggregate sites. Slim pickings there. She rummaged through her mind for something productive to do. She'd already done everything. End of the road.

"Being a nun is dumb." Her mind traced back to the TV show and the uncomfortable feeling it gave her. If she'd had an email to answer or any sort of retail activity to conclude she could have pushed off that feeling for another day. So how to feel good?

"All it is is running away from life. That raped nun didn't forgive those boys like she said. She only got harder inside, steeling herself against her feelings. She'll be horribly dry and rigid when she gets older. I should write about that and expose it to the world."


Running away from life, steeling herself against her feelings, Margaret followed the ancient axiom of writing what you know about. She imagined herself as an Enlightened Being talking to a Lost Nun, setting her straight.

"This isn't dedicating your life to God hiding yourself away like this. We're supposed to live!"

"This is my life," insists the nun who believes that being willing to die for her beliefs means she is willing to die for God, mistaking stubbornness for faith. "I can only hope God gives you the same fulfillment I have found."

Margaret had been sent to Catholic school as a child and hated it. They were always lording over her their greater piety, gloating on how they'd been saved as she herself yearned to find her way. Most of all she remembered the uttered lines that brought stinging guilt that she now channeled into her own nun's character. Bitch!

"Jesus didn't die for our sins like you say. We murdered him for no reason! Whore of Babylon!"

She turned off the monitor, disgusted with people who make stupid choices. Margaret feared the night, the dreaded Recurring Dream looming, waiting for her to doze off so it could attack. In her half-life as a real estate novelist, no matter which side of the fence she was on, the other side was always greener. Some things cannot be bought. Never could she shake the dream of becoming a successful writer. All the gold in the world couldn't make that to happen.

But in half-life, Margaret was successful. She made good money as a realtor, had a knack (if not a passion) for it, and she led a very comfortable lifestyle. She also did writing she hid from home visitors and, most of all, her clients. She even denied an interest in literature during business time all the while she floated away during presentations, notating her clients' characteristics and working them into her grand and glorious unseen novel. Then she'd squint her eyes hard as she could.

I'm getting money. I'm doing writing. I'm a successful writer!

To keep the fantasy alive, she refused any romantic entanglements. Then she'd have to explain herself and all the bad choices in her life. Complete isolation was required to keep the half-life vision alive. But no soul however unclean or pure escapes the thorns of the world. Margaret's agency was bought out by a national chain, steeped in the disease of corporate culture.
"From now on," read the memo, "every realtor shall start his or her day writing 100 times 'I love being a realtor!' This will create a positive environment to promote sales as well as be an excellent team building exercise. Our iconic orange beanies are to be worn when showing a home or conversing with a client in person. Each day will end with the 'Jig Of Joy', hopping on one foot from side to side until your supervisor deems it sufficient time. We must be right. We have a billion dollars in cash."
"Just because you have cash doesn't mean you're a success!" stormed Margaret, ripping the memo to shreds. But her horrors were only beginning. She alone among her co-workers was outraged. To them, this was simply part of the deal of keeping their luxurious lifestyles. Tino actually said he'd wear a clown outfit if they told him to, "Makes no difference." As the only one with an identity - or half-identity - outside of work, Margaret felt the ice melting under her feet.

But I don't love being a realtor. It's just a way of getting money. This is beyond humiliating. I can't lie like this. My life is over. If I lose my money I won't be a successful writer anymore. This cup is too bitter to drink.

That night she retreated to her online novel, the one place where she could feel good of her own volition outside worldly thorns. Where I go to feel alive I can't make a living. Where I go to make a living I can't feel alive. Then her own words rushed back to haunt her: Just because you have cash doesn't mean you're a success! Stunned, she staggered to her bed sticking her head under the pillow, her muffled words only she could hear.

"I'm a total failure and a fool! How do you like your phony success now? I can't wear that stupid goddam beanie! Real authors are laughing at me. I don't ever want to write another word. Life has no point! I'm just like those lost nuns trying to buy a stairway to heaven. I'm being punished for living a lie. You have your revenge, God. I'll quit pretending to be a writer and let my book be just like its title: Gone With The Wind."


Sunday, August 23, 2015

Homeless Hell Bytes


If you ever want to be alone in your home - free of all intruders be they vampires, zombies, bill collectors, or jackbooted JSOC operatives - one need only spread an ample fragrance of what I call "Free Clinic Smell." Even if an invader were tempted to breach the premises he would be rendered impotent by this life draining aroma; the intruder rendered helpless as a baby as his mind dissolves into wondering what possible purpose his life ever had. This is the end of line, so sayeth the odor.

Luckily - I should have put that in quotes - I have built up a minimal but sad tolerance to this olfactory malice. Those who work in free clinics are immune by virtue of receiving the smell's permanent brain damage, like doctors contracting leprosy from treating leper colonies. To survive these occasional ordeals I prepare myself as a Zen lord would before an especially difficult regime of discipline. One does not win, one simply hopes to endure.

We without the benefit of abodes - who then by conjecture must be deficient as human specimens as well - are herded like children into events "for our own good." Because, Lord knows, we couldn't possibly know that on our own. Our self-appointed heroes shepherd we sheep so that we may be poked and prodded to see if we are fit for continued survival. I assume the weakest are purged in merciful furnaces of the governmently contracted. Never is the world so foul as when it wishes to appear noble.

"Good news, Mr. Homeless."

"I'll be the judge of that."

"You're fit as a fiddle. Amazing, really, given your circumstances. You must tell us your secret!"

"Daily masturbation. Got any pictures of your wife?"

Dr. Welby's enthusiasm waned after that. "I see. Regardless, you're on your way to decades more life. Another good 30 or 40 years, at least."

"Worst news I've had all year."

"I don't understand."

"You know, what I should of asked is if you've got any daughters in high school. Now that would be hot!"

"That's not funny. Quite sick, actually. Frankly, sir, after a remark like that you can die tomorrow."

"Now we're on the same page!"

Then I heard the doctor mutter on my way out: "Fucking asshole."

*****


She was upset, but wouldn't say why.

"You care more about that cat than you do any person."

"No doubt."

"If you had to choose between that cat and a person's life, you'd just let somebody die, wouldn't ya?"

"I think I already confirmed that."

"There's something wrong with you! People can't be acting like that."

"People act all sorts of ways. How do you think you ended up in this hellhole shelter, anyway? The milk of human kindness?"

"That right! You lucky you got a place to go! I never met anyone so ungrateful in my life."

"Don't worry. You can kiss their ass all you want, no one's going to give you a ticket out."

"They do if you work hard. You just be lazy is all!"

"Hard work gets you nowhere but used up. I'm more valuable than that."

"No you ain't! And that cat ain't either!"

"Don't hope to compare yourself with my cat or you'll live to regret it."

"How can you say such a thing?"

"My cat lets me be nice to her, I can please her, and she lets me take care of her. Can you say the same of me?"

"No, I can't!"

I took that as an ender but she stood there waiting for a response. Still she remained mute on why she was upset. I petted my precious kitty until she finally stormed off. "Fucking asshole," muttered my adversary in hasty departure.

*****

How to get me to agree with you

No matter how down and out or desperate or hopeless a situation, people always feel they need to lecture you on the secret of their success. I suspect were I to engage a convicted soul on death row he would attempt to regale me with pearls of his wisdom ("I might be gonna die but..."). So even among the homeless one will find a good portion of conservatives clinging to our myth of civilization even as they bear the brunt of that lie. If everyone simply fought back every time they were shit on and left their ideology outside the door the world would be fixed in a day. Politics is religion by any other name.

One favorite false axiom of the morally challenged is right and wrong are determined by what does or does not make people upset. Jesus would not be remembered today had he subscribed to that lunacy. Funny how it's those who claim to be his followers who believe this sacrilege the most.

"I've said it before and I'll say it again: anyone who fought in the Iraq war wasted their life for no reason. They died and were damaged for nothing. Total pointless waste. They did not serve their country. They did not serve their fellow man. Being told to sell your soul makes the crime no less egregious nor the price any less dear. Only people who say otherwise are those who betray the soldiers - just like those who ordered (or supported) the war."

I've seen even those who claim to hate religion as the untruth of all untruths desperately seek to cover up this truth just as badly as any bishop covering for a molesting priest. What is it about politics makes us want to speak well of evil? What do we hope to gain in the end? Fool's gold is the devil's currency. But my sin is not that I speak the truth - however accurate or not I may be - but rather that I speak that which is unpopular. Many are those who track such things and if they feel you've said something that does not poll well that gives them in their mind free reign to rip you to shreds hurling epithets disparaging your integrity, your lineage, etc.

"You just don't care what anyone thinks, do you? You better work on that attitude or you won't get along nowhere!"

"That's a double negative so you're really saying I'll get along fine. Of course, Jesus said people were evil all the time."

"You're not Jesus!"

"But I want to be like him. Don't you?"

"Don't you be twisting this around. You better change that attitude and start respectin' folks or won't you ever get a job!"

"Right. Let's keep pretending the soldiers died for a good a reason so others can follow in their steps. That's what's going to bring me success in this world. If being a lapdog is your idea of success all I can say is I hope you like dog food."

"You want to be like that, that's fine by me! See where that gets you. Nobody's going have nothing to do with you! See how you like it then. But don't come whining to me. I wash my hands of you. You ain't ever gonna have a place in this world. You your own worst enemy."

"If you're saying you're going to crucify me then I'm certainly in good company."

"Don't you say that! Don't you ever say that! You ain't Jesus, not by a long shot."

"Right, but no one is ever crucified for telling a lie. Know how I know that? Because truth-tellers don't have a need to crucify. Only you do."

"Fucking asshole!"

*****
"But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed."
But they don't like me, either.


Monday, August 17, 2015

Denny And The Debts

Getting you to kneel before me makes me hot!

"I don't know what to say, Father. It's like a bad movie. I spend my savings on my Mom's operation, my car breaks down, got no money to fix it, then lose my job 'cause no car then lose my car 'cause no job. What did I do so wrong? Why is God punishing me?"

"God is not punishing you, Denny. You must keep the faith."

"Keep the faith? How? I'm starting to believe there is no God."

"It's true there's only as much God in this world as we let in. Be a portal for light in the world. It's all anyone can do."

"How much does that pay? What good is that if I'm starving to death? I'm sorry, if you can't give me more than words I'll have to find another way."

"Love is the only way."

"Remember that when I'm dead, Father."

Outside the church loomed a shadowy figure in a black fedora hat looking for dissatisfied customers.

"Hey, bud, dem guys didn't give ya nothin', did they?"

"I don't want to talk about it."

"You know how many billions they got in that church? They got priceless relics just sittin' on shelves gatherin' dust. They hold on to their stuff while everyone else loses theirs. That don't seem right."

"Whatever. I gotta go."

"Hey wait. Maybe's I can help ya."

"I doubt that. Father Sims was my last hope."

"Nah. Don't believe in them guys. Dem bastards burned people alive for centuries. How can you trust scum like that? Could you ever burn someone's alive like dat and then say after God wanted ya to do it? They got a lot of gall in that!"

"I need money, not advice or history lectures."

"Money's what I got."

"Oh? How's that?"

"I can guarantee you millions, sure as the sun shines."

"What's the catch."

"Easy. Just sign this paper givin' me your soul."

"Are you saying you're the Devil?"

"Nah, I just collect souls for him on the weekends. Rest of the time I'm CEO of Goldman Sachs."


"A bankster. You really do know about getting money. So how does this work?"

"Easy. Sign this and I guarantee you that the next lottery ticket you buys wins it all."

"Mom told me never to trust anyone with a Jersey accent."

"Mine is Manhattan. And besides, all it costs is one dollar to find out if I'm full of it or not. You don't win, dis piece of paper mean nothin'. Can't get a better deal than that. Besides, what does it profit a man to gain his soul and lose the world?"

"Sounds like a big waste of time. I got real problems."

"You got that right, kid. You's a step away from bein' homeless. I seen them guys. They age real quick on the streets, dying slow and hard, livin' like animals. And forget about the dames. That dick of yours ain't gonna feel another soft leg rest of your life smellin' like yesterday's trash. You's think about that."

"OK, I'll sign. But I think you're full of shit."

"This really works, kid. Sold my useless soul decades ago. Now remember. Dis is only for the next one you buy so wait till it gets good and plenty before you's cashes in. Got it?"

"Will do. In for a penny..."

***

Denny's friends were waiting for him at his apartment to hear the outcome of his meeting with Father Sims. Denny couldn't bring himself to speak of his bargain for his soul.

"Maybe I could win the lottery and solve all my problems," he mused.

"Don't be a fucking moron. That's a sucker's bet, even for a buck."

"That's same as giving up, Denny. We need to think of something more realistic."

"Like what? Getting a loan with no collateral? You know what asshole banker said. I got a better chance with the lotto than those assassins."

"The lotto is just a con game anyway. When the mob used to run numbers the cops put 'em in jail for it. Now the government does it it's suddenly OK."

"That's right, Denny. You want honest money."

"Honest money? Fuck that! Money is money. Nobody gives a shit how you get it. Nobody gives a shit I worked my ass off at two jobs. And God sure as hell doesn't give a shit if I have money or not. We're just fucked on this planet, trapped like rats."

"You can't say that."

"Sure I can. God has a live-and-let-die attitude. That asshole lives and we die."

"You'll go to hell saying stuff like that."

"Saying it? Shit, man, I'm living it!"


But Denny was plagued by guilt hearing how his lottery scheme was immoral money even if legal. But how was he to get "honest" money? What choice did he have at this point? He'd done his part paying his bills and holding down a job. That got him nowhere! Only slave-holders and losers go around squawking that hard work is the answer. That's the real fool's game!

But try as he might, Denny could not escape his moral crisis. Millions for him while others starved? And what did he do to deserve it? Then again, what did he do to deserve a wretched death in the streets just because he helped his mother? Be smart. Take the money.

A 230 million dollar jackpot was more than Denny could stand. Time to cash in! Time to be on the winning side. If all the honest men die what matters life then anyway? Denny had never be so nervous or self-conscious as when he walked into a convenience store on the far side of town (to hide his doubt and shame however it worked out).

"No, sorry, sir. We do not sell lottery here," kindly explained the Indian clerk. Denny rushed outside his heart beating in wild confusion.

It's a sign from God! Walk away before it's too late. You've been given a second chance. You were never going to win anyway.

That afternoon was the loneliest of Denny's life. He walked through foreign neighborhoods seeing poor families living life as if the world would go on forever. The sun seemed to trail his every step, questioning his next move. But finally a rationale hit him: If I'm not going to win anyway, no harm done. Might as well play and put this behind me. God's got me marked as a loser  - right?

This time Denny made sure to check the signs before entering. To provide cover he bought a candy bar and bottled water; a hungry soul who just happened to also buy a lotto ticket. But Denny could not overcome his swirling mind at the time of execution. A million mad messages bombarded him both for and against. Is this how an honest man feels? Do all the smart people feel this conflicted? Jesus, get me outta here!


Denny fled out the store in a panic. He jogged for three blocks then turned into an alley to make sure he wasn't being followed. Calm down. Once you've had the money for a while it'll become normal and you can take care of everyone else so they won't have to sell their soul. "Call me Godfather," giggled Denny. Yes, he could handle success. It wasn't until this moment he realized how much he'd feared it. He felt sickly strong stepping into this new world but here at last was a chance to breathe.

"Oh, no! Dear God Jesus, no! I can't believe you! You're the biggest loser of all time! Do you hear me? There is no bigger idiot than you! God, I hate you!"

Denny had reached into his pocket to once more look at the magnificent figure he was slated to win - and found nothing. In fact, he had no lottery ticket at all, leaving it behind in a confused state of self-sabotage. Since he'd feared he was doing wrong his subconscious deluded Denny into a false sense of morality.

The run back was terrifying, exposing his desperation to the world. But he had to take that chance. Why is this taking so long? Breathless and sweating. the clerk had expected Denny's return.

"Sir, you forgot your ticket."

"I know! Please, may I have it."

"No problem." The clerk walked to the machine and spit out a new ticket.

"No! What happened to the one I bought before?"

"A woman and her children came in to buy so I gave them that one. I could not be sure you were coming back."

"What was her name? Where do they live?"

"I do not know. I cannot give out that information regardless. It would be illegal."

"Just fucking tell me!"


Three long days later the winning family made the news. Denny tried to locate them to plead his case but to no avail. For the next six months he walked around in a stupor.

How strange the shadowy figure could be trusted in this world when all else failed him. Why had he done what he'd done? How could he go on knowing he'd self-betray himself of every opportunity? If he thought there was no point to living before, he'd surely proven it now. We stand abandoned by God.

Having moved into his mother's house, Denny did get one piece of news from a friend.

"Hey, Denny, my sister wants to date you."

"Who cares?"

"Wow, you've really lost your soul."


Saturday, August 15, 2015

Tres Caprichos

"Hey, like my deformity?"

Gina was a daydream believer and a homecoming queen. And she wanted to stay in that world forever and ever. But leaving the high school bubble made life difficult. She latched onto whatever hero worship she could find: police, firefighters, the military. She found great joy in lionizing their deeds but like with any addict, she had to have more.

Next she decided to devote herself "to the glory of God." All good things come from God. I am nothing! We're all nothing! Praise be to we who follow the word! She twisted and turned and mangled her rationale into believing her life still a dream to be envied. But her overly supplicant nature caused amusement in some.

But though she had many like-minded souls with whom to cavort, Gina became frustrated that not everyone saw the light. How outrageous to ignore the truth and the way! She became rigid and narrow-minded in her self-righteous martyrdom. I am persecuted because I speak the truth! But many started avoided Gina and her inevitable dogmatic speeches on behavior.

She decided she needed to do more. The world need guidance to enlightenment and a strong voice to lead it there. Reverend Jones was that man. His clarity and conviction fed a need in her in a life that had gone off the rails. Above all, she must cling to the idea she still led a magical life no matter how deformed it became. Then came the Kool-Aid time. A wailing woman approached Gina.

"Oh, my God! Did you hear? It's poisoned! Don't drink the Kool-Aid. People are dropping like flies. Oh, the horror!"

Gina corrected her to the last. "The horror is you! If this is what our leader says to do then it must be a good thing. Are you sure everyone is dying? How do you know until you try? Be open-minded! Are you saying you're too good to drink like everyone else? As for me, I'm a believer - and a happy one at that! It's good to die for something greater than yourself!"

*************************


"Uncle Freddy is nuts."

"How do you mean?"

"He's the only person I know who burns himself in effigy."

"What does he do that for?"

"He says to make up for things he can't do."

"Like what?"

"He wouldn't say. He just said he can't do things he needs to do."

"How does hating himself help that?"

"He says it's a measure of his morality."

"More like a measure of his moron-ity."

"He said he can't just can't do nothing."

"Burning himself in effigy is worse than doing nothing."

"I said that. But he said he holds on long as he can then sooner or later he capitulates and lights up the effigy dummy. He feels satisfaction when it's burning then feels like shit afterwards."

"So hopeless."

"I asked him how he expects to go through life that way. He said it's immoral to expect anything from life."

"Good luck with all that!"

*************************


Mr. and Mrs. Jones had acquired 12 million dollars over the years in clever banking schemes. All legal, all above board, no one could say a word against them. But they were afraid - very afraid. Their much beloved home with a view of the San Francisco bay was built on the foundation that "legal" equated to "moral". If people started to wake up to this being an untruth all their wealth and scheming would vanish into thin air.

What to do? Grab the loot while you can!

But there was a fly in the ointment of paradise. A blogger with an axe to grind against the couple for their greedy ways kept a blog at mrandmrsjonessuck.com. He portrayed them as morally bankrupt, conceiving their children in selfish sin, and Christian hypocrites. The more the couple proclaimed their wealth a gift from God the more the angry blogger claimed they were possessed by their money.
This is how the deceptive among us act. If you were a Russian spy elected to office you'd spout anti-Russian venom every day to pose yourself as a patriot. Real patriots don't have to pose. Same way with hypocrite Christians. The more they talk God, they more phony you know they are. The innocent don't need to justify their lives.
Living life as if money and power were their saviors, they told their lawyer to find a way to silence the pesky blogger. A very official cease and desist letter was sent. It did not have the intended effect.
I got a notice from a lawyer today to end my blog and wipe it clean or face legal consequences. All I got to say to that is: See you in court, Johnny Cochran! Can't wait to cross examine that bitch. "True or false: are you the Whore of Babylon?" These dummies still think that winning legally means winning in reality. I've got a hundred questions for them. And besides, I would love a trip to San Francisco!
Over their lawyer's objections the couple decided to drop the suit. The point was to gain control not give it. Then they hatched a plan to beat this bastard at his own game: bribery. So an offer of $10,000 was sent to sign an agreement to no longer reference them. "We'll see who's greedy now!"

This notice he kept off his blog, instead replying he would agree - but at a different price: one million dollars. "I'm going to hurt your bank account as well as your greed. How much is peace of mind worth to you? This is my final offer." The pair were outraged, this being too much to swallow. They'd sold their souls for that money and to lose a chunk of it like that was to lose an equal amount of their souls.

Seething, they replied under no circumstances would they pay that amount. The letter they received in return surprised the couple. Their foe stated he would sign the agreement for the new price of one cent. But their own reaction surprised them even more. "No! Not one red cent! I can't do it. The price is too high. Never! Never!"

Knowing this would be their possessed reaction all along, the blogger posted the outcome with much fanfare to be read for the ages.



Thursday, August 13, 2015

The Kidnapping Of Karla, Part 1

"Your life is devoted to satisfying me
or I'll leave you to hump your hand
and join the army."

Karl was a collector. In a world where it's claimed manhood can be obtained in a pill Karl just had to believe there was a place for his unvalued life outside of that officially deemed valuable. He loved to rummage for "pieces of discarded life" (even as he often kicked dumpsters yelling, "Shit! Shit! Shit!"). Then he'd take his loot back to whatever abandoned building where he was hiding at the time and somehow try to feed off them. Somewhere somehow there had to be a scrap of dignity outside the norm.

Spotting Karla in her party dress storming off from her boyfriend in the 7-11 parking lot one night, Karl at last put all the pieces together. Karl didn't know where she was headed to or what she was thinking on how she'd get home, his only concern was she stay in a dark area long enough for him to pull his gun. And that she did and that he did.

"Run and I'll shoot!" Karla started to run anyway. Karl fired a shot into the air, Karla started begging for her life. "Just do what I say, bitch!"

Karl had swiped the gun from a pickup cab, too embarrassed to buy bullets he had only the three left in the revolver. But she didn't know that. Frightened by his desperate face and homeless garb, Karla's social instincts kicked in knowing what wrath a disenfranchised soul might hold. She was infuriated with herself to find she was yet drawn to his plight and curious as to his possible grievances. No time for that now, you fool!


Karl continually plied her with threats on the walk back to his hideout. He himself did not know if he'd shoot or not. This was a new experience for him having something real to lose. Easy to speak of the greed and selfishness of others while wandering his desolate life, but now Karl knew a new fear. Once having this sweet taste in his mouth, how much more difficult to go back to nothingness! No wonder everyone is acting like animals to keep what they have. It was then Karl first realized he was not alone in leading a desperate life.

"Get over there, rich bitch!"

"I'm not rich! What are going to do to me?"

"Stick your hand and feet in there or I'll shoot your foot off and you'll never walk again."

God knows the story behind a BDSM set of stocks thrown out behind a sex shop but Karl was drawn to it as an object of desire. Seeing her hands in feet writhing in its hold finally brought that object to life. What ecstasy! He slipped off her heeled shoes.

"I've always liked feet. Yours are so pretty! I must tickle them!"

Karla squealed in agony at the top of her lungs, partly from the torture and partly to raise an alarm. She had no way of knowing Karl had anticipated this and made their isolation was complete. He was excited like he'd never been before: a real live party girl all of his own!

"Oh, God, you look so hot in that skirt! Those bare legs are gorgeous!"

Karl lowered his pants to show his appreciation, helplessly stroking his satisfaction. Karla did not appreciate his appreciation of her sexy attire.

"You're sick! That's disgusting! What kind of a man are you?"

"The kind that doesn't need viagra!" exploded Karl. He zipped up his pants in abused relief. "Dear God Jesus where did you get those legs?"

"Touch me and I'll kill you! Let me go you bastard! Let me go right now!"

"Shut up! Your job is to do what I tell you to do whether you like it or not."


Karl was unconcerned by Karla's continued trite ranting. He knew it was her job to find any chink his armor she could exploit. But his only thought was now that he'd achieved paradise where did he go from here. He couldn't keep her and her wonderful legs forever. Afterwards he'd be back to where he was before: hopelessly outside alone. Shit! never thought about having success before. He'd have to play it by ear.

Suddenly drained, Karl crawled into his makeshift bed to sleep. Karla kept up her protests until she too was drained. In the morning light she found Karl sucking her toe. "I fucking hate you," she hissed, then surrendered to the soothing sensation. She needed to see nothing but evil in him.

"Want some breakfast?"

"No!"

"OK, suit yourself. I'll be going out. Try your hardest to escape. You are a vision in the morning sun!"

"Go fuck yourself. I can't wait until your bitch ass gets raped in prison. You'll get ten years for kidnapping!"

"I'm already doing life."

Karl went to make his usual rounds. If she was still there when he got back then he'd know he made the stocks escape-proof. He also knew the longer he kept her the more attached he'd be. Karl had a lifetime of hunger stored up inside and she was just what the doctor ordered.

How wonderful to have someone to come home to! Doors that once seemed impossibly locked to him weren't so impregnable. Why not give them a try? Why not see if he can open them? What had he been waiting on all these years? One pretty party girl made all the difference; to step out of the shadows at last.

Karl reflected on the lost time in his life, something he rarely did. The gradual descent into the streets, unable to cope with the reality of pointless jobs and the mirage of money. He needed to breathe and for that he was given no quarter in a dying realm. Hope existed as a carrot he can never reach, mocking him during the day as it called to him forlornly at night. Having Karla changed all that.


She was still there when he got back but Karla was certainly not his.

"Let me out! Let me out, you sick son-of-a-bitch!"

"I will never let you go. You're mine now. I'm never going back to the life I led before. And your body is magnificent!"

"Don't you touch me! This is insane. You have to let me go!"

"You have no say! Welcome to my world. Now I'm going to run my hands all over your legs."

Karla wailed and wiggled, nearly losing consciousness in revulsion. But felt death enveloping her. I hate feeling used!

When Karl finally stopped, he was desperate to speak in a normal manner. "Let me know when you're hungry." He figured she'd spit in his face,

"I'm starving," honestly spoke Karla, trying a different tack.

"OK, first you have to say something. You have to say it before every meal or I'll let you starve to death. With no food you'll not even have the energy to escape and you'll just sleep all the time trapped here forever. Trust me, I know what happens when you eat no food."

"What is it then?" asked a suspicious Karla.

"Tell me you want to suck my dick."

"Fuck you!"

"No, not that. Just suck my dick."

"I'll go ahead and starve."

"Brave words now. I'll be back with a cheeseburger. I almost never eat out but today is a special occasion!"

"No wonder you're homeless, you sick fuck. You're a fucking freak! You don't belong in any part of a civilized society."

"We'll find out when when we have one," replied Karl as he departed. He waited several hours to soften her up for the food.


"Still not willing to say it?"

"Am I supposed to say or do it?"

"I said to say it."

"I don't want to."

"Suit yourself." Karl's cheeseburger was sliced in half. He hungrily dove into his half.

"Wait a minute."

"You want to say something?"

"No, but.." Karl kept eating. Soon he would be eating her half. "It's just that...do I really have to say it? This is ridiculous. Come on!" Karl finished his half, then picked up hers. "Wait! Just wait, OK?" Karl waited. "I want to...s*** y*** d***."

"What? I didn't get that."

"I want to suck your dick, you fucking asshole!"

"See that wasn't hard, was it? And guess what? You'll only have to say it for the rest of your life every time you want to eat! Hahahaha!"

"This is a nightmare. This can't be happening to me. What did I do to deserve this? It makes no sense! Who are you?"

Karl scoffed. "I say that every day of my life. I'd tell you you'll get used to it but you won't. You'll just grow old before your time."

"This is hell..." Karla nodded off to sleep.

Karl also used his other weapon: isolation. Leaving her alone for hours at a time withered her into submission to accepting his company. As with him, their time together was all she had to look forward to. But Karl wanted revenge on the world as much as he wanted Karla.


"Now I want you to tell me it's raining."

"OK, it's raining."

"Not yet! When I tell you!"

Karl stepped behind her and unzipped his pants. Karla immediately protested as she knew what was coming. She screamed for him to stop urinating to no avail.

"Say it! Say it now!"

"It's raining! It's raining!"

Karl zipped up his pants as Karla sat in a pool of piss; broken, defeated, and suicidal. Whatever relationship she thought she'd forged with him vanished. This man could not be bargained with, could not be reasoned with. Her appeals fell on deaf ears. She lived at the mercy of a beast. She shut her eyes to pray for death, but death would not come.

When Karla woke up she was free of the binding stocks. Karl had vanished. At first she wondered if it had been a dream. Then waves of shame crashed over her and she knew she had to get out, get cleaned up, and cover up before anyone found out her humiliating weekend. That night in bed, feeling safer, waves of anger replaced the shame.

"I want to kill that bastard! I want him beaten to a pulp! I'll cut off his dick and throw it in the sewer where he belongs. God damn him! I'll get him if I have to die..."


The Kidnapping Of Karla, Part 2


You fucking asshole! I can't believe what you did! What kind of person are you? You really liked her and now she hates your guts, wanting you dead. Fucking prick. You must be the biggest jerk in the world. All this time you spend ranting about the world and everyone else - well look at you!

"I want to die...I want to die..."

Why should she have to pay because you screwed up your life? Isn't that what you always bitch about, how you pay for the sins of others? You're no fucking better, douche bag.

"I was out of my head. I wanted to be with her so badly. What could I do? Ask her back to my hellhole? I have nothing legitimate to offer. It all just started coming out. How will I ever live with this?"

Nobody likes you. Nobody has ever liked you. She's going to figure out you had feelings for her. If that happens she'll come looking for you and that will be the end of you, you fucking piece of shit who deserves feelings for no one. Out of the frying pan and into the fire!

"My life is hell upon hell. I deserve to die, I know. I won't fight it anymore. If God were truly merciful my life would be taken as I walk down this street."

But Karl's life was not taken. After suffering a total moral collapse he refused to speak as much as possible. He spent four days eating nothing but a honey bun and a fruit pie, hoping to off himself. He kept wondering why God didn't take his life already. It was obvious he was never going to have a life. And it was even more obvious the more he liked someone the less he could trust himself. Before this he never realized how urgent it was Judas hang.

*****


Karla wasn't lying when she said she wasn't rich. Anyone showered and wearing a nice outfit was rich in Karl's eyes but she was stuck in a retail clothing job she hated. But she was determined to be "responsible" and be regarded as a good person. Her burning envy of her boyfriend having an actual career had been the true driving element behind their spat that night. And where did that lead her? Into being kidnapped!

If only it hadn't happened. Karla felt the trajectory of her life permanently altered. It was her own failings that put her into that trap. She felt a new emptiness she hadn't known before. As if helplessly caught in a whirlpool she was being sucked into an abyss she could not fight. How would she find her way home?

Of all the days she needed a pleasant day at work, this was it. But the universe conspired otherwise, sensing the void in her life. Today would be her worst possible.

"Jimmy's out today so I need you in back doing all the stocking."

"But that's not my job! I'm not a stocker."

"Your job is to do what I tell you to do whether you like it or not."

Karla physically stumbled backwards, stunned to hear the same words spoken all over again. Falling, falling falling. She felt sick in the pit of her stomach. Every fiber of her being told her to flee, to be free of this. But where was out?

Where is out? How can I be asking myself this again? It's like I'm still trapped in that warehouse. This can't be happening!

Karla wanted to cry but she feared the tears too much. An emotional wreck, she was glad to be hiding in back not facing the public. Little did she realize this was the beginning of the end.

The falling sensation only got stronger. Try as she might, Karla could not escape the feeling she was still kidnapped, her asshole boss the new Karl. When her friends complained of their asshole bosses and shitty jobs it seemed the whole world had gone mad. But wasn't this the same world as before? Why is it just now she noticed?

I hate feeling used!


God damn that Karl. That feeling of outrage he awoke in her did not leave when he left. "Karls" were everywhere! And that same helpless feeling shackled her. Who could she run to? Where could she go? Was she damned to drink her life away in denial? When she experienced her first "black out" night it scared her what she was becoming. Then she heard Angry Aaron at work the next day.

"Look at this fucking bullshit. "Ninety percent insured!" and a picture of that smiling cocksucker gloating like he's done something. That son-of-a-bitch is worse than any plantation owner. For the rest of my fucking life I gotta carry this shit on my back. "Where's your card, comrade?" So fucking what if I have insurance. If anything goes wrong I'm still fucked! Any of you got 4,000 dollars for my deductible? Don't I have to fucking eat and pay rent? Do I exist to make that psycho happy? And even if I do make more money that just means I pay more to the insurance thieves! And these people are writing this shit like it's a good thing. Well, fuck you assholes! Don't piss on me and tell me it's raining!"

Karl was speaking to her still, channeling himself through Aaron's voice. Karla was transported back to the warehouse and this time she knew she'd never leave. She really was Karl's for life.

This can't be happening! This can't be real! It's like I never left! I'm so angry I can't stand it! I don't know what to do with all this rage seeping out of every pore. It makes me want to...

*****


Karl never saw Karla come back to the warehouse with or without the police or a vengeful gun. He imagined the worst, of how he'd damaged her for life, left a walking zombie in world she now knows she can't trust. Like a moth to a flame he returned to the scene of the crime, squatting and staring for hours in silence. There is nothing. I am nothing. There can be nothing. As surely the most unfavored child of God he awaited his doom. And Karl suspected that returning here would facilitate that.

Slowly the door opened but Karl did not move. The angel of death had come at last. What possible protest could he mount? Time to die.

"I've got just one question for you," spoke a new and different Karla. Her eyes were focused with a sense of resolve rarely seen in a world drowning in guilt and shame.

Karl cowered, frozen in fear. As Karla before, he too wanted to cry but too much feared the tears to let them fall. Of all the things to flash back to at this moment of death Karl remembered the suited man talking on his cell phone in his black BMW stopped at an intersection on a miserable rainy day. Outside and wet, Karl had never felt so lost seeing he who was his opposite: successful, purposeful, a winner. The clicks of the recently unemployed Karla's heels echoed louder as she approached.

"I've got just one question for you," she repeated, then smiled in what normally Karl would call a warm dream. "Who do we kidnap next?"