Archive for September, 2012

Voting Skills; Learned Behaviours Or Critical Thought?

Saturday, September 29th, 2012

 

So. It’s now fewer than 40 days until Federal Election Day and like most people who actually give a shit about elections, my head is aswim with politics. Maybe aswim isn’t an actual word, but I don’t really give a shit. Should be.

I don’t like to say, “My head is swimming with politics,” when it’s the brain part swimming inside my head, and not my head in the pool doing the backstroke with politics. I make every effort to be accurate herein, as accuracy is my middle name.

OK, my actual true and given middle name is Einstein, the middle reliever on the team of words that were chosen to name me when born. My birth certificate says that my name is Butcher Einstein Johnson, which, had I not become Mooner during the first hours of my first day of First Grade, I’d likely be named “BJ”, like my buddy BJ, and everyone would be confused anytime a blogger mentioned, “I saw this over to BJ’s blog.”

Which reminds me to tell you that when you get a chance, step over to BJ’s place at: http://www.bjsunoriginalthoughts.blogspot.com/

and check out the embedded video clips that show on his first page. The Sammy Jackson clip is an easy fit for whatever theme I had when I started this tome. But look at the others posted to his first page.

Then again, what set me off in the first place was something I read over to Q’s place at

http://www.thankq4commonsense.blogspot.com/.

If you are wondering about the funky spacing in these last two paragraphs, it’s because I can’t figure out how to write text next to an embedded linkster to another site, like I did there with BJ and Q. There isn’t a single fucking button on my keypad I can push to prevent other text from merging with the linkster stuff if I don’t plan ahead and make extra blank spaces before I insert the linking text.

ADHD kills at any speed.

Anyway, what Q was talking about was how people don’t use their own brains to make voting decisions, they use Fox News or MSNBC or Smushed Limburger to make decisions for them.

And, sweet Jesus, how, inthefuck, did Rush Limbaugh ever get so popular? How many bigots still live in America?

I made a comment on Q’s site in response to his thesis that contained the following:

I was lucky. The first time I was old enough to vote–a time when my head was firmly planted in a cloud of pot smoke hovering under young womens’ skirts, I asked my father who I should vote for. He told me, “Pull your head out of your ass and figure it out, son. If not, please don’t vote.” 

Those words between the quote marks would be Daddy’s actual words to me when I asked him for whom I should vote when I was first of voting age. I was in college then and my head was too busy blowing hot pot smoke up young womens’ skirts to consider my voting choices. The candidates of my first Presidential voting decision were Hubert Horatio Humphrey, Richard Millhouse Nixon, and George “Ain’t No Niggers Gonna Roll Tide on My Watch” Wallace.

Wallace was out for me, and without any consideration. I was raised to hold no quarter for racists.

As for Nixon, I remember that I didn’t like him for multiple reasons, but I can’t remember what the specific reasons were during the last 40 days before that election. I liked the politics of HHH, but he was a limp dishrag to me, and for some reason I felt my President should demonstrate some moxy.

But 1968 was a terrible election year. Lyndon Johnson—my first choice—had health problems and chose to not run; Martin Luther King had been assassinated; and then my second presidential choice, RFK, was murdered as well. I had been involved with Johnson’s campaign even before I could vote and took up Kennedy’s banner after that. When the final candidates were known, I asked Daddy who he was casting his vote for out of confusion—I wanted his advice.

And he gave me his best advice.

But he also had already given me his best parenting and that gave me the values upon which my evaluations are made. Once, when I was seven years old, I told a joke at the dinner table that I heard in school. In the mid-1950’s the joke was known as a “Nigger” joke. And don’t you just hate that word? Doesn’t it make your skin crawl? I don’t like it coming from any person’s mouth—my own or even black people.

I think that black people are perpetuating the use of that word by using it.

Then again, I just used it twice to express precision in my words and I think I need to spend some time thinking about the N-word. Maybe I’ll ask God how to deal with it when I’m next visited.

So, we were in the middle of dinner and I had been waiting for just the right time to tell my joke. When Gram asked for a second helping of mashed potatoes, I took the following lag in the conversation to act. I told my joke, then I almost rolled out my chair laughing at myself.

“Go out back and cut a switch, Mooner. Didn’t I tell you to never say that word?”

Oops.

“Wasn’t it funny, Daddy? Everybody laughed when Junior Basher told it.”

Turns out, Junior Basher was killed over to Viet Nam when the latrine seat occupied by his ass blew both him and the latrine across a small chunk of jungle. Seems Lt. Junior Basher couldn’t stop himself from telling racial jokes, even in the company of enlisted men carrying the racial genetics bearing the brunt of his jokes.

Daddy replied, “Never means never, Mooner. That’s the same as when people call you white trash only way to the worse. Now fetch me that switch.”

How willow switches were used on my sister and me depended upon the season. In colder weather, the switch would be used classically as a whip on our asses as we bent over and grasped the edge of the table. But when the weather allowed us to wear shorts, we were made to stand up straight with our legs apart and the tip of the springy switch would be applied to our legs above the knees.

The whippings were always administered there at the kitchen table in front of the entire family, and each family member was given the opportunity to lay on a few strokes. On this mentioned occasion, each person present lay some wood on the tender skin of my thighs.

But I think I might be digressing just a touch. In less than 40 days, we will be making one of the most important decisions for America in modern times. We will choose whether we want to continue as a country towards becoming a Christian theocracy that plunders its working classes for the corporate good, and blunders about the Globe to enforce our desires on others in the name of Freedom.

Will we keep reducing social nets and networks and reducing the paid retirement benefits of people who prepaid for those benefits? Will we give religious zealots control of our country’s reins in much the same way as has been done in Egypt?

Or we will choose to demand social fairness, sanity and civilized administration from our elected officials.

Either way, please think before you vote, or don’t fucking vote. Manana, y’all.

All Hail King Mooner; If I Only Had A Crown

Tuesday, September 25th, 2012

 

So. I read over to BJ’s place at Dumb Perrignon that Ann Coulter has criticized the Democrats for dropping their support of blacks in favor of courting the Latinos. In Mz. C’s eyes, America’s black population and their issues have nothing to do with Civil Cights and our immigrants from the South are all about it.

Really?

Then at Squattie’s place over to Squatlo Rant I read about how Herr Field Marshall Schmidt Rommel had openly wondered why commercial airplane windows don’t open and suggested that the oversight might should be corrected.

Really?

I’m starting to feel a small sense of relief over the pending elections. I’m starting to feel that the tide has turned on our Nation’s recent nosedive into the swill and muck of extreme right-wing Christian idiocies and back towards the middle where I think our political climate belongs. And while I mixed my metaphors there, I did manage to state—with precision—my current sentiments.

And how confusing must that seem? I’m a liberal-thinking person with the social policies reported in some circles to mimic those of Jesus; I think our military should truly be orchestrated as a Department of Defense only; I think it takes a village to grow a billionaire and that some of the resulting wealth should be taxed and returned unfucking equally to pay for the infrastructures of said village; I think that physical and mental health services are a required product of any advanced civilization; I think that Jane Fonda is still sexy.

But I think our national political systems need to be fair and balanced—middle road bodies of compromised conclusions. While I know that my ways to do things are far better and fairer than those of differing views, I don’t think that my ways should be the only ways, and I don’t think that revolution is desirable when things are only damaged.

Like America. I think we’re damaged but not broken. I think that most of the folks with far-right thinking are misinformed but not evil. I think that for every Rove or Coulter or Bachmann there are thousands of confused citizens who simply are not connecting the dots in the big picture of our country. Likewise, not every liberal thinks we need to stage a revolution of our own.

If I were King and this not a democracy of sorts, I would impose my will on the rest of you, and you would like it. OK, you would like it for the most part. I would enforce equality in every aspect of society and I would share our Gross National Product with a fairness not before seen. I would arrange an accounting system that would judge the cost to produce wealth—the incremental expenses to pay for roads and schools and hospitals and Police and all the rest—and tax all income under that system.

It wouldn’t matter if you were a school teacher or an oil tycoon, a movie star or a $50,000 per year fireman. The infrastructures required to produce your income would have an allocation to your income source, and you would be taxed accordingly. The more you earn, the more infrastructure was used to support the growth of your wealth.

For starters, the first $40,000 of earned income would not be taxed at all. No federal tax, no how. That $40 grand is what it takes to enjoy a basic American lifestyle in most parts of the country and the only taxes allowed on that income would be state sales taxes. And, by the way, all income is earned income. Corporations earn income just as people and religions would be treated just like the businesses that they are.

The only non-profit organizations allowed to not pay taxes will be required to apply 85% of all monies collected to the actual need they serve. If they can’t administrate on 15%, they can kiss my ass. And you’d better not be wasting donated funds, shithead. I’ll send your carcass to jail. Break my new banking and investment laws and I’ll jail you as well. Matter of fact, if you bend or break financial rules for personal gain you, dear friend, will be treated as a murderer. While I’m on the subject, if you are a child molester you’d best consider repatriation.

I’d limit state sales taxes to 8%. With me returning much of the federal taxes collected back to the states, those governments will be able to pay for their services on 8%.

After the first forty thousand, your income will be charged a “Use Fee”. Use Fees reflect what it costs for you to make your money. A fireman will pay less than an oil company. Oh, and in my system corporations will be people as far as taxes go. An oil company will pay for the roads used up by trucks that provide the company services, and all the other affiliated costs required to support their enterprise. The company will pay taxes based on gross revenues, not net.

Fuck your net revenue bullshit. General Electric—watch your back, mother fucker—King Mooner is gunning for your ass!

And holy shit have I gotten ADHD waylaid. I wouldn’t want to be King if elected and I’d likely get sidetracked with my mental illness and fuck things all to Hell and back. I’d be meeting with my Secretary of Defense, BJ, and he’d have set up a demonstration of our new vaporizer weapon and I’d suggest we share a few tokes of weed before we lunch on some pulled pork sammies and Carta Blanca beer, and we’d forget the vaporizer dealie and it would over-charge and blow up somewhere over to Iowa where we kept it hidden in a silo.

I wonder how much of Iowa would need to get vaporized before we’d miss it?

Anyway, I think the mark of a true semi-democratic society is that it compromises its way through its evolution, and I also think that I have spent enough time on this subject. Nobody really gives a shit what I think. When we were sitting out on the portal last night after dinner, I was talking about how I think that the current bunch of far-right Christian assholes are, at least, somewhat fascist.

One-by-one my son, his lady, and then the dogs excused themselves to go inside to pee. When the Squirt excused herself, I told her that I had planted the cute little patch of fescue bluegrass so she could pee outside. In answer, she said to me, she said, “We’re not going to pee, dumbass, we’re playing Scrabble. You have managed to bore the ever-loving shit out of us all.”

Whatever, I made some cogent points. Manana, y’all.

 

Hosed Again; Moving Moments

Sunday, September 23rd, 2012

 

So. Here we all are in Santa Fe, New Mexico. We’re tired and sore and sick of wrapping paper and moving boxes, but we’ve not often been as happy to be tired and sore. As the Squirt put it last night when we were out to the portal having icy-cold Carta Blancas and a plate of finger foods, “Son of a bitch but this is some fine living, Bwana Mooner. This is some mighty fine living.”

She was right, of course, and a portal is a covered patio and the finger foods came from a selection of fresh veggies, handmade sausages and meats, and some pickles we grabbed from the Santa Fe Farmer’s Market. I picked up some fresh bread and other accouterments from the Whole Foods over to Cerrillos Road and we were set.

The weather was crisp and clean and the temperature fell from about 69 when we sat down just at dusk and was 62 when I checked it at 11:00 pm as we finally went inside. Then this morning it was 55 when I got up to go get the Sunday paper. I see from the sports section that Tennessee won yesterday, so I won’t need to listen to my buddy Squatlo piss and moan about that, and Kansas State whipped Oklahoma so I get the pleasure of hearing Sooner fans whine about that. A Daily Double.

My elder son and his special lady will arrive for a visit in a few hours—the first of family and friends to see the new casita. It’s still a work in progress but he wanted to help me with some of the update stuff, and help is what I need.

“You’re as clumsy as a borracho pintor Bosnio, Mooner. Everybody knows that you have to put the clamp on the hose first, dumbass,” Squirt advised me. “Look at that dumbshit, Yoda, he worked his ass off getting that hose into place and now he’s got to take it back off to put the clamp on it.”

I was squatted behind the clothes dryer—cramped and crowded in the tight space and likely looking like a drunk Bosnian painter—and the Squirt had her nose wedged between it and the washer next to it. Yoda the goat dog had jumped atop the dryer and was peering down at me like when Snoopy played vulture in the cartoon. The smell of stinky dog breath was a fetid cloud of halitosis as I was struggling to get the too-small vent hose snugged-over and clamped-to the out-of-round vent pipe in the wall. I was thirty minutes into the job and I already had two slices in my fingers from the sharp metal edge of the pipe and an ass full of frustrations.

“Have I told you that they eat dog meat tacos up to the Reservations near Taos? We’ll be heading that way this afternoon.”

Squirt laughed at me and the goat dog tried to eat the end off the dryer hose. We all climbed into the GTO to head over to the Ace Hardware store for a new hose and they were making a new batch of popcorn when we got there. Yoda went to stand station by the popcorn machine to capture anything that dropped and to practice his begging skills.

“Mr. Johnson, how are you sir?”

It was the head cashier. “Listen, you might want to leave Squirt in the car today, sir. We just waxed and polished the floors and I don’t want her to rub those wax finishing products into her cute little bottom.”

For those of you uninitiated here ’bouts, the Squirt had impacted anal glands and would drag her ass on the floor tiles all over the Ace Hardware. She was so fucking adorable with her hind legs pointed skyward and that grimace plastered on her face.

“Oh, Thanks, but don’t worry. We got her all fixed up before we moved.”

Here I lifted the miniature bundle of brown fur and wonderment and flipped her around to show the scars. “See, most of the swelling is gone and you will hardly be able to see her scars. I paid extra to get her cuts and sutures done cosmetically.”

“Uh, ah, I can tell,” was the only reply I got.

When we had made it to the dryer vent aisle, Squirt stopped and looked up at me. “That, you giant flaming asshole, was soooo embarrassing. If you do that to me again I’m going to shit in your favorite sneakers and have Yoda eat your car seats.”

Point taken. I guess I can be somewhat inappropriate at times. “OK, little lady, I’ll try to not do that again.”

Anyway, when the family arrives we’ll head out to the Santa Fe flea market and off to lunch in the mountains. Another day in paradise.

Manana, y’all.

Packing Is Such Sweet Sorrow; A Moving Story

Monday, September 17th, 2012

 

So. I’ve been busy sorting and packing the things to take to Santa Fe. And thinking. I’ve never really moved except back to my college days when Streaker Jones and I rented a furnished house over near The University of Texas.

Precisely how do you decide what is important enough to move from one state to another—from one culture to one of a complete difference? What personal mementos are better placed in one home as the other?

How does a person divide their life’s possessions and histories into two separate piles?

Me—I have no fucking idea.

I have gone from thinking that I should move everything I own across state lines to giving everything away to the Salvation Army and starting over. I have keepsakes from three kids, ten marriages and six decades of life enjoyments and pains. I have a big house here to the ranch and every wall, nook and cranny is full and packed with my—and my family’s—shit.

I have an entire truckload of stuff from my own childhood. I have the cactus needles removed from from my body that time I fell into a mature prickly pear; I have the pair of old coveralls—rusty zipper still hanging from their crotch—from that time Mother zipped me up; I’ve even got the newspaper notice that appeared in the Metro Section from the first time I was ever arrested.

Which of those keepsakes is better kept in Santa Fe and which will age better in the higher humidity of Austin?

How does a man who loves to cook divide his kitchen gadgets into two separate yet equal allotments—one to stay in Texas and the second to travel to the Enchanted Land? Assuming that everything has some semblance of a soul, how do you decide which things get the same blessings as you yourself are to receive with your move, and which are to stay in the arch conservative political cesspool known as Texas? Will my favorite All Clad cookware have hurt feelings if I leave them behind and buy new there? Will the stockpot miss the saute’ pans if I separate them? Will they burn stuff on purpose if they are unhappy with my decisions?

Ugh.

When I asked my grandmother what she thinks, she told me, she said, “Oh who gives a shit, Mooner. Take what ya want and leave tha rest. Now git yer ass out to tha grillie and cook them ribbies.”

I love that crazy old broad. When I asked her if there was anything I could do for her before I leave this time, she said, “Ya can fix me some a yer ribbies—ya know, them ones with tha sticky sauce.”

Sticky sauce would be a fiery-hot honey glaze that I apply after the ribs are cooked. I slather the sauce on and then move the meat over the hot coals. Most of the glaze slides off into the fire, and the resulting flare-ups from sugar on glowing coals crisps the remaining sugars onto the meat. The results are tender and juicy pork meat with a super-thin spicy crust.

As my Gram likes to say, “Makes ya wanna slap yer own damned self.”

Anyway, I’m really too busy to screw with writing and I’m likewise way behind schedule with the packing. Movers will arrive Tuesday morning to load and I need to get ready. So this will be the last posting until Thursday or Friday, and then I’ll be writing as a New Mexican.

Squirt told me yesterday, she said, “Maybe we should change my name to “Chorra”. Chorro is Spanish for Squirt.”

When I reminded her that chorro can have a negative connotation she told me she’d think about it. Then she told me that since luna was Spanish for moon that maybe we should call me Lunatic. She then laughed herself breathless and almost broke her leg patting herself on the back.

Manana de la manana de la manana, y’all.

Tough Questions Tackled; Mitt Romney Still A Prick

Thursday, September 13th, 2012

 

So. Here we all are in the middle of the year 2012—ten thousand years into our evolution as a civilization and our planet’s highest life form—and we don’t seem to have moved far beyond the tribal mentality from when we were all hunter-gatherers. We have once more regressed as a world to repeat the bigotry of Territoriality. America’s religiously-bigoted Christian shitheads are inciting those with Muslim-based bigotry and violence is the net results.

I think these incidents of zealots with opposite ideology are not unlike back to our cave dwelling days when Grog shit in Grunt’s campfire in an effort to get him to move to different hunting grounds, and Grunt stole Grog’s woman in retaliation. Then Grog gets really pissed and rolls a big rock off the cliff onto Grunt’s head, killing him.

Grog runs down the hill, cuts Grunt’s ears off with a flint stone ax, steals his stuff, grabs the wife and has a party back to his cave.

I think that the more we evolve as a species, the more we devolve back into our baser instincts.

And I also think that maybe I might be just a touch crazier than previously thought. I think I might be just as big a cuckoo bird as Joan ‘d Arc or Osama Bin Laden or Pat Robertson. I’m spending an inordinate amount of time speaking with God and I’m giving advice based upon those conversations. I guess the only thing that distinguishes me from each those nut cases is the simple fact that I’m not a nut. I’m telling the truth—God’s words from His lips to my my ears to your eyes.

I spent last evening watching news reports of the latest Mideast insanity while sipping Carta Blanca beer and sampling a selection of my Gram’s latest mushroom potions as we sat on the patio. My personal favorite, labeled in Gram’s sloppy handwriting as, “Don’t laugh at me, buster, I have spies,” was a soothing concoction designed to keep us from getting too happy at Mother’s vacating our premises.

Maybe I wasn’t sipping the beer and again, like I said before, maybe I’m slightly more than slightly nuts.

“Hey, shitball,” Gram said to me when the Rachel Maddow Show went to commercial break. “Ask yer buddy God about all a this crap. Maybe He can make headers from ass holies.”

I thought about it. “I’m not sure when we’ll be speaking again, I have no control over his visits,” I answered.

Then I wondered if you should say capital-W “We’ll” when the we part is you and God. See, me, I don’t understand why we don’t capitalize every fucking thing when we are speaking of the capital-G God. Maybe that’s the real reason we have a Caps Lock key on keypads.

And why, inthefuck, isn’t the Caps Lock key lettered in all caps? English is a confusing enough language without all of the contradictory rules and regulations. If we can’t spell shit phonetically we should be allowed to punctuate as it feels when we write.

Anyway, I told Gram that God visits at His will and not mine. Then she told me, she said, “Who gives a shit, Mooner, ask God to come an’ talk ta ya.”

I thought about that. “OK, but won’t that be like a prayer. Asking stuff from God—isn’t that what a prayer is?”

See me, I’m really unsettled about asking God for anything. I’m worried that even asking a question is dangerous—I think that the ultimate example of “Be careful what you ask for” would be to say a prayer. You know that joke where the guy asks God if he can have a pecker long enough to touch the floor and then the guys legs fell off?

Add to that unsteady logic the simple fact that—just like in physics—for every prayer you offer there is an equal and quite opposite prayer getting offered up to your, or some other God.

“Maybe that’s why the world is so fucked up,” I told Gram. “Maybe all of those Gods from the different religions are all trying to grant all of those conflicting prayers and making a mess of things.”

“Nah, too simple, Mooner. Ask tha big guy.”

“OK,” I said and closed my eyes tight. “Dear God, how about You come over for a little chat. There’s some craziness I’d like You to explain to me. Please don’t come if I won’t like Your answers. Amen.”

Hours-long story shortened for brevity’s sake, God came to see me last night. I was fast asleep when I was awakened by the sound of John Lennon’s voice singing Imagine. I love that song.

“Hey, God, how’s it hanging?” I asked him.

God stopped singing and transformed into M’hat’ma Gandhi. “I’m unwell, Mooner my man, things are not so hot with your world.”

We discussed the world situation for a bit before I said, “OK, answer me this if You will. Why are there so many religious zealots out there who are willing to kill for their faiths? Why is there so much hatred and distrust among the World’s greatest religions?”

“How about I answer you by making you one of those zealots? Close your eyes and I’ll make you a loony charismatic Christian for a few minutes.”

I shut my eyes and immediately felt a sense of personal calm and one of political agitation. The personal calm came from the absolute knowledge that my buddy God was THE God and that His promise that I would have everlasting life at his right hand in Heaven, and that my job on Earth was to promote those facts to others. I also felt that I had the right to enforce those beliefs onto others.

The political anger was for anything of contrary nature. I was so committed to my belief in my God that any other thoughts were unacceptable to me. I felt a hatred of those different. I felt a surge of desire to do something—any fucking thing—that would put down those with conflicting ideas from mine.

“Now I’m going to make you one of the men protesting at the US Embassy in Yemen,” God said, and I suddenly found myself dressed in a robe and throwing a rock.

I was angry to the boiling point and had the absolute knowledge that I had a few dozen virgins awaiting my arrival to Heaven’s gates. I felt, simply said, exactly the same as when my fanaticism was Christian based except for my perspectives. Suddenly I felt like meeting my virgins sooner rather than later, and I rushed the Embassy walls.

“Wake up, boy, come on. It’s not your time yet.” God said.

But I was anchored—right foot stuck in the cement of Mohammad’s Love and left leg knee deep in Hate’s quicksand.

“Wake up, dammit,” and God slapped my face. Hard.

“Ouch, Dude. That hurt.”

I was stunned from the slap and still punch drunk from the overpowering emotions of religious fervor.

“Powerful shit, no?”

“Is that really what it’s like?” I asked.

“Why would it be any other way? If you have absolute certainty about unsubstantiated theories… Well, how else could you think, act? There is no more egocentric or bigoted human position available. Your species’ ability to have absolute faith-based convictions is the root of your evils, sonny boy.”

I thought about that and God interrupted by saying, “And don’t even think that it’s only the lower-intellects who think these things. Some of your brightest are delusional, bigoted.”

“Why can’t those guys find it in their hearts to live and let live, Big Guy? Why must they hate each other?”

“It’s contra-intuitive. Impossible to have absolute certainty about one thing and not distrust/dislike opposing views. That’s also why those guys can be so easily manipulated.”

Ugh.

“It’s Your fault,” I told God, “I think this is all your fault.”

“Oh, please. Don’t be a shithead. I let you guys drive your own cars, Mooner, you’re the ones putting them into the ditch.”

And with that, He was gone.

Hard to hold much hope when the fact is so sobering—that bigotry’s very origins lie in our gathering in the comfort of like-thinkers—that by conjoining and solidifying our faiths we generate arch enemies.

Ugh and again. I had to ask.

See what I mean about prayer? Manana, y’all.

 

Old Lease/New Lease; Mitt Romney Is Really Stupid

Wednesday, September 12th, 2012

 

So. After Mother announced to the family that she’s moving out this weekend, the family mobilized to pack her bags for her. I wrote to you guys about the move yesterday morning and then took the dogs with me to go pick up my new Rx glasses. Once we got away from the house and free of the terrible emotions of my mother’s pronouncements, I must admit that I started feeling pretty good. And well too.

I called back out there to ask Gram what I might need to get from the grocery store. “Fer starters ya can grab yer mother a case a Kleenex. That crazy bitch is already weeping like a busted whistle an’ she ain’t even gone yet,” Gram told me. “An’ we need one a them bung holy jobbers to finish packin’ yer Mother’s shit.”

Huh? My grandmother needs a bung holy jobber to pack my mother’s shit?

Oh, I get it. I told her, “OK, so Mother has already started packing to move and you need a bungy cord to strap her bags closed and Kleenex to stuff her snuffles.”

“I didn’t stutter, boy, an’ who said anything ’bout Mother packin’ her own shit?”

That cleared up everything. The family got pissed at Mother’s pissiness and decided to move her out in advance of her current lease expiration date. I guess my mother has stiff opinions to offer but a weak sensitivity to stiff opinions offered.

Which reminds me. While I think that President Obama has done a decent job with our military and international applications thereof, my antiwar natures still wish that he would pull back from Gaf-loonystan faster and that he would use our military technologies and might more judiciously. But I’m today reminded that my status as an antiwar human isn’t the only reason for us to think more than twice before playing World Police Chief.

In the way of evidence, I give you Libya. We step into the frayed fabric of that Middle Eastern cesspool to prevent their leader from slaughtering hundreds of thousands of his own citizens and our thanks are recent events there. In my personal opinion, the millions of religious freaks that populate that part of the world are much less dangerous to America when governed by the iron fist of a strong dictator than they are when freed to not govern themselves.

If you examine each and every example of the US using its military and financial muscle to intervene in another country’s politics, you will see the long term failure of the strategy. Start with Viet Nam and come on down, America, you’re next up on The Price is Just Too Fucking High.

If we had the money we wasted on our attempts to stabilize unstablizable chunks of mineral-rich political geography instead on sustainable energy resources, we would be energy self sufficient by now.

In fact, my Gram had what I think is a brilliant idea just the other day. “We need ta have all a them convicts and soldiers and tha fucking politicians all blow hard to tha south. Put one a them wind chime dealies down to tha border and make ‘lectricity an’ clean tha global blanket too.”

When I reminded Gram that having political blowhards blow hard would likely have little effect on global warming, she corrected me.

“Them silly fuckers can’t talk and blow too, Mooner.”

While I’m still skeptical as to the reduction of greenhouse gas with Gram’s plan, I can see that the noise pollution might be nearly cured. Add to that the total insane stupidity of Herr Field Marshall Rommel’s attempt to lie about the President for a political point over the attacks on American embassies and I’m even more ready to move to the Land of Enchantment.

Anyway, I stopped to get the Kleenex and stretchy straps and headed home. When I arrived, I found Mother sitting on the back porch amidst a broad assortment of luggage and black plastic bags.

“Why all the plastic bags, Mother? We have plenty of luggage to get you moved,” I told her.

“Your grandmother wouldn’t let me use any luggage but my own—said that since I bought a one-way ticket I’d use the plastic bags.” Mother sighed quite deeply and added, “I’ve never been more humiliated!”

Really? Arriving at her new address with plastic bag luggage is her most humiliating moment? Me, I was most humiliated when the half a Kotex pad I used to pack my infected ass fell out over to Dr. Sam I. Am’s place when I was mowing the grass that one time.

Or was it when I had a wet dream on that American Airlines flight back in 1982? That’s why I always wear long pants on the plane these days. And how sheltered has a woman been to have plastic bag luggage her most embarrassing moment?

Anyway, due to familial intercedence, Mother has moved a few days in advance of her plans. I asked her as she sat beside her possessions if I could load her stuff into the truck and take her to San Antonio.

“Oh, don’t you worry about me, Mooner. Pastor Browningwell has sent the church bus to pick me up. Now kiss me “Goodbye” and leave me alone.”

I did, and except to ask her to phone when got settled in, I have. That was 1 pm yesterday and we haven’t heard from her since. But I’m not worried. I’m relieved.

Sometimes life actually serves you the lemonade.

Manana, y’all.

 

 

Free At Last; A Mother’s Forgotten Love

Tuesday, September 11th, 2012

 

So. I’ve been back to Austin from Santa Fe for ten days and I have several things to say. First, had I been born in Santa Fe I would not own property in Austin, Texas. I would not have a second home anyfuckingwhere within the borders of the Lone Star State. I might have an alternate home in some other state—like maybe Oregon or Vermont—but I would avoid the red states like the plague to humanity they have become.

My birth state is in a state of shambles from the perspective of civility. Right-wing Christian politics has turned a wonderful place to live into an almost third-world country and I find myself done with it. I’m too fucking old to think I’ll live long enough to see things change, so I bought a place over to Santa Fe, New Mexico. I’m moving in over there the middle of next week and after this move, I have no plans to move back.

When I first started thinking of getting a place over to the New Mexico mountains it was to gain temporary respite from the hot weather in Austin. As our globe has warmed under its canopy of greenhouse gas, the heavy, fetid heat of an Ecuadorian jungle has supplanted Austin’s once bearable weather cycles. Austin’s summer heat and humidity can suck the air out of your lungs in thirty seconds.

Not that I’m selling out here to Texas. Everything here will remain status quo save and except my presence on a continuing basis, and thoughts of hot, fetid air remind me of something.

Ann “When do I Blink” Romney has declared that the issues of gay marriage and contraceptives are distractions to her and not worthy of debate among true Americans. Mrs. Herr Rommel made the claim yesterday that over the last year her hubby has been on the campaign trail, she has grown to understand just what things are important to we common people and, especially, common American women.

Really? Access to contraceptives is not an important issue? Nope, not to the Herr Field Marshall’s modern Stepford mate. Fitting the politics for the spouse of a greedy man who secrets his immense wealth offshore, Ann Romney wants to focus on economics.

Of course her focus is on economics.

Second on things to say is to say that my mother’s memory loss has blossomed into full-fledged dementia and an associated dull idiocy. At breakfast this morning she informed the table that she has rented an apartment in, as she calls it, “That nice old folks home in San Antonio where they treat Christian ladies with the respect we deserve.”

When I asked her why she was leaving the loving comfort of her family home to live with strangers, she told me, she said, “It’s all your fault, Mooner. You allow homo-sex-u-als to sit at your table and you mock the Lord. You are evil and I don’t want to remain in your presence.”

She then handed me the Lease and first Invoice for her new apartment and demanded of me to, as she put it, “Handle this. You owe it to me.”

She is moving this coming weekend and asked me to notify people of her new address and contact information. She poked a hand written list into my hand and told me, “These are the ONLY people I want to know where I am. DO NOT, Butcher Einstein Johnson, give my information to anyone else.”

I scanned the list and when I raised my eyebrows, she said to me, “I mean not one other person !!!”

What had raised my brows was not who was on Mother’s list but, rather, who was not. Not on the list is Sister and her wife, Anna the Amazon, Streaker Jones, Dixie, Aunt Hilda, my Gram and me.

“Are you saying that you don’t want your family to know where you are, Mother?”

I was asking from a sense of confusion and got a confusing answer. “I hold no stead for homo-sex-u-als nor heretics, son. You’ll miss me. Did you get the birthday card I sent?”

My initial thought was to pretend to forget about the Lease and list and give Mother a chance to forget she had done it, but further thought convinced me to do otherwise. I’ll follow the instructions to the letter, and my last planned gift to Mother will be to pay her expenses while she spends her last days degenerating into a head of cabbage in a small apartment two hours’ drive from her closest family. I’ll tell her that she can request contact from those she’s excluded but that I’ll insure that none of us will darken her door without an invitation.

When I examined the lease, it’s cover letter was dated August of last year. My mother made this decision with forethought and before she had lost much of her mind. If it didn’t reflect her actual feelings—if it was an aberration of thoughts—I’d ignore her wishes and barge ahead in typical fashion.

But this is what she wants and I guess that I should be proud that she can finally be honest with me. When I told her that I would honor her wishes she said to me, she said, “Thank you, Mooner. You’re a good son but a terrible human being. You and your sister are the biggest disappointments in my life, and it’s your fault she turned out as she did.”

When my mother expressed her disappointments in my lesbian sister and me, I had an epiphany—an unsettling deja vu moment that should have been a foreshadowing for me. While my father was alive I thought that Mother was a saint of sorts. Daddy had my ADHD and a child’s exuberance for life. He was, in a word, a handful.

Whenever Mother would mistreat Sister and me with callousness she would blame it on Daddy. It didn’t matter the instance, Mother would treat us badly because Daddy was whatever he needed to be to explain Mother’s uncaring attitude. Mother always made it clear that she was only acting on Daddy’s orders. I loved my father but I always thought he was mean.

It was after my father had died that I felt like publicly exposing the fact that I had been raped as a child. I didn’t want Mother to hear it from someone else, so I decided to tell her first. I felt that she would be shocked and angry that one of her friends from church—a man she respected—had sexually abused her son.

I felt that Mother would be horrified and angry. I felt that she would comfort and console me.

I invited her to join me out back to the patio with a glass of iced tea. When seated, I explained to her the story of my thirteenth birthday and her not picking me up from aquatics camp, and the church Deacon-Boy Scout leader molesting me. The story rolled out of me in a rush and it seemed as if I had told it all in one breath.

When I finished, I took a deep breath and said, “I wanted you to hear it from me and not someone from your church.”

Mother lifted her frosty glass, sipped thoughtfully, and set it down carefully in the water ring already glistening on the marble tabletop where we sat.

“A boy tried to kiss me once and I fought him off,” my mother told me. “Are you going to grill for Easter dinner or will you make me cook?”

So much for comfort and consolation. I grilled goat and pork sausages for that Easter dinner and never again sought solace at my mother’s bosom. I’m not certain why, but Mother has made it crystal clear to me that I’m unwanted in her life

If you love something you are supposed to set it free. I have decided to set my mother free.

Manana, y’all.

Mexican Food Mambo; God Imparts Sage Wisdom

Monday, September 10th, 2012

 

So. We’re a full week into the Squirt’s recovery from ass surgery and she’s finally back to near her normal self. She was still cranky and bitchy all day Saturday but then awoke Sunday morning with a big smile and a new attitude.

“Buenos dias, Bwanna Mooner,” the little puppy almost purred at me. “Let’s crack some eggs!”

One of the diminutive dog’s favorite Sunday breakfasts is Huevos Rancheros—the northern Mexico dish of a grilled corn tortilla topped with runny-yolked eggs and your best salsa—and I’m an especially good cooker of Mexican ranch eggs. I grill the tortillas outside on the BBQ pit over mesquite, the salsa Gram makes is likely world class, and I fry the eggies in hot pork fat. The egg whites will get all crisp and crunchy and leave the yolks soft and bursting with flavor.

And don’t start on me with any of that “you need to cook the shit out of your eggs for the sake of food safety” bullshit. If you’re worried about the food safety of your eggies, you, dear friend, need a new fucking supplier of eggs. Or get a chicken and grow your own. Nothing is easier than raising chickens. Cluckers are the simplest-raised food resource there is.

They’re dumber than the back side of a hoe but loyal if you feed and water them routinely. And in this case, the chicken comes before the eggs.

Which reminds me. My buddy Katy over to the Lesbians in my soup site has gotten herself into quite a pickle. I’m thinking she has put a major league fuck job on her marriage and caused Dana to take the kids and leave Katy to suck the dirty, fetid Hoover air that can only be found in the carpets of a broken home.

While her most recent writings left me wishing she’d posted a pic of her mentioned rug carving, the power of her prose likewise broke my heart for her and her family and left me wishing I could help her. I feel a kindredness of crazy spirits with Katy and wish I could provide her with some soothing salve.

Should that be “kindredlikeness” of crazy spirits?

Speaking of crazy spirits, I had another visit from God over the weekend. I’d not been visited for over a month and had actually started to think that I was imagining the visits. Should that be the “Visits” with a big V?

It had also been over a month since I had sat out to our fishing dock with my menagerie of animals, a cooler of icy Carta Blanca beers and a can of worms. I had eaten an after-breakfast dessert of medicinal cannabis-infused chocolate—an herbal remedy I’m not yet accustomed to dosing—and I was sporting a pretty spiffy buzz. I think this particular Rx was prescribed to help a person suffering from stress and I must say I was feeling stress free.

The Squirt was sitting at my side with her head trapped in the big plastic cone that prevents her from chewing at the stitches on her ass. “Take this fucking megaphone off my head and I’ll tell you a secret.”

Her voice had the tinny, desperate edge of an Alabama Civil Rights protest organizer of the 1960’s as spoken through a rolled-up newspaper. “I promise I won’t mess with my stitches.”

“Sorry, kiddo, you’ve already broken that promise and I’m not chancing having to go through a second surgery recovery with you. These last seven days have been rough on me.”

I closed my eyes and enjoyed the somewhat cool air and the sounds of my animals as they farted around on the wooden dock. I heard the sound of hard plastic battering tin and knew that Rick Perry had attacked the can of fishing worms. Like chickens, ostriches love them some earthworms.

“You’ll miss this when you’re in Santa Fe, Mooner. There’s other things you’ll miss as well,” a familiar voice advised me.

It was God. When I opened my eyes to look, I saw She had fashioned Herself into the perfect visage of a young Kate Hepburn. I love Katherine Hepburn, but God’s voice wasn’t the gunmetal gravel and sex of Katie H.

“That’s my best version of Moses, kid. Not that idiot Charlie Heston, the actual one from way back on the Way Back machine.”

I was thinking that Moses had a weak and sort of silly-sounding voice, something akin to Arnold Horschak from Kotter on TV.

“He was short as well. Almost all men were short when compared to today,” God said.

Then I started thinking what lesson this Godly visit could have for me. Each time they happen I get some insight from God.

“Have you ever wondered about Moses and the Egyptians and all of that wandering in the desert, Mooner?”

Without much thought I could answer that question. “Like most of the incredible stories from the Bible and other history books, I always wonder what recreational drugs folks used when they wrote their version of events. Old Moses? I’d bet the farm that he chewed Peyote buttons. Now if you want to talk about Joan of Ark…”

“Don’t say it, Mooner, don’t even think it. Joanie wasn’t a batshit crazy bitch, sonny boy, she was a true believer,” God informed me.

Huh? How does a sane person distinguish between the two?

Reading my thoughts as only God can, She replied, “You can’t tell the difference. And that, dear sweet man, is the problem with histories. You can’t distinguish the liars from the prophets or the loonies from the sage reporters.”

Isn’t that the Truth—from God’s lips to my ears. “It’s no different today as we write our history from current events, is it?” I asked. “Every word is at best tinted with personal perspectives, and outright lies at the worst. How will our history ever be accurately recorded?”

As I looked at God for the answer, She morphed into Richard Nixon. “It won’t, silly. Half of all histories were written untrue, and the other half have been re-and-misinterpreted so many times even I have trouble with them. In a hundred years from now, Tricky Dick Nixon could be one of your greatest Presidents and Mitt Romney an honest man. As long as school textbooks are being written under the guidance of the Texas School Board…”

“… Then man played with dinosaurs and You started this entire mess because you were bored,” I told Him.

I added, “Sometimes I think You are an asshole, Sir. Some of the shit you pull is just plain rotten.”

“You shouldn’t blame me, buster, no more than you should praise me. All I did was give you humans a brain, a heart and a conscience. This dealio is yours to make or break.”

And with that, God was gone.

God said “dealio”, and I guess I will miss this dock when I’m in Santa Fe.

Manana, y’all.

 

Squirt Gets Cut; An Unfriendly Welcome Home

Wednesday, September 5th, 2012

 

So. I’m back in Austin and now back on the Beat. I arrived in my part time home city last Thursday afternoon and had planned to write to you that very evening. But plans being plans, that idea was fucked from sometime approaching Noon CDT, Eleven am Mountain time last week.

Things were going grandly on the trip back until we got to Post, Texas—a small town south of Lubbock and 2/3rds of the total drive from Santa Fe to Austin. “Pull the car over to that Dairy Queen, Bwana Mooner, I need to use the bathroom,” Squirt told me.

When I started to say that this was the tenth time she’s needed a break, I only got to the “This is the tenth…” part when she barked at me and said, “Pull the car over NOW!!!”

I did, unhooked her from the leather harness that makes her safe at any speed, and then watched her leap from the partially open GTO door. For the ninth of her ten pit stops, Squirt squatted in the yoga posture called “Dog Takes A Shit” where she gritted her teeth and strained until her already buggy eyes nearly popped out of her skull. I left the car myself to stand at her side.

“This has gone way past Baboon ass, little lady. Your anal glands have become a liability to your health,” I told her. “You need to think about getting them taken out.”

“Fuck you, asshole. Why don’t you get your ass operated on first—then come talk to me.”

When I reminded her that it has been but a short two years since I did just that, she got a defeated look all over her face. “You’re right. Call the vet. Or shoot me—your choice.”

I called and made an appointment for early Friday am to get her operation and then spent all Thursday night placing and holding ice packs to my adorable puppy’s swollen bottom while listening to her constant chatter as to her fears of going under the knife.

“What if he slips and cuts my sphincter muscles and makes me incontinent? Then what will you do?”

“I’ll clean up after you just like I’m doing now,” I told her. “Have you seen the stains you’re leaving on everything that touches your ass?”

Anyway, she had her operation Friday and I picked her up early Saturday morning. She was still goofy from the drugs and I’ve never seen her any funnier. “I think I’d like to have sex with Yoda,” she slurred to me in the car when I asked her what she wanted to do when I got her home. “He’s so fucking ugly he’s got to be good in bed.”

“That was a terribly sexist remark, my little bundle of fur, and quite inappropriate given the circumstances surrounding today’s American political debate,” I advised. “Women are under attack by the Republican Party and we all need to be sensitive to our remarks.”

“Fuck you. I need a drink.”

How more blessed can a man be that to have this dog as his best friend?

Anyway, once she came down from her drugs the Squirt has been a miserable patient. She wants to be held by me for all the twenty-fours. So I’ve been quite tied up and unable to type until now, and now I’ve managed to negotiate only a thirty-minute span of time to say as much as I can. Then I must return to the couch to cradle my sad, sick puppy in my lap.

A thirty minutes that I have just been informed has passed. Manana, y’all.