Saturday, March 31, 2007
For a split second we almost wrapped our arms around each other and started doing that giggly sitcom girl “we’re so excited about what was just said” dance. The cursing was made up, but our 7 year old minds thought the equivalent. Instead we just extended high and low fives to one another. We hadn’t watched any black comedies at that point in our lives so it was none of that “shake and bake” shit that everyone does today. We were old school because it was still the old school.
Dad had never taken us to a carnival before, but now he had to be creative about what we did since mom kicked him out of the house. He wanted to be original and taking us to Chuck E. Cheese was either getting old or he fucking hated it. Looking back, I’m sure he despised that God damn pizza eatin’ rat or at least he thought I did. The first time I saw that fucking rodent I started crying. After I regained my composure I laid in wait.
When he refocused his torment on a group of children across the room I went in for the kill. My brother and I had only started taking Tae Kwon Do lessons the week earlier and they didn’t even teach you the ninja shit. It was pretty much only punch, kick, fuck off! You would’ve thought Americans would’ve created that martial art. It was so straight forward, loud and to the point.
The American Ninja Marathons on USA were probably where I subconsciously honed my skills because after I ripped that fucking vermin’s tail off I started swinging it around my body in a nun chuck like fashion.
I’d like to say that children across America cheered in unison because of my great feat and that I took my trophy home and it still hangs above my fire place, but in all honesty my dad snatched it out of my hand and beat my ass with it. It’s kind of my claim to fame now amongst my friends, not many people have been spanked with an over-sized rat tail before.
Unfortunately, Dad was so pissed that he never got around to taking us to the carnival. From then on out it was either McDonald's or Burger King. At least they had free toys in the happy meals and Hasselhoff looking clowns only scared my brother.
I still got excited every time I saw him, but he seemed to get annoyed when I asked him if he was just wearing a disguise for Knight Rider.
Wednesday, March 28, 2007
A man is murdered for doing good, calling out those who oppress others and oh yeah, claiming to be the son of God. Not only is he murdered, but he’s tortured and given one of the most slow and painful deaths that was possible at that time in history. I imagine if the Romans hadn’t come up with crucifixion, Eli Roth would’ve conjured it up and fit it in among the other many gross out gore scenes in his next movie.
Could you imagine how it would effect society if Jesus had been killed in another way? Let’s say Jesus was killed by being ripped apart limb by limb, would a dislocated shoulder be considered the stigmata?
Not only do people believe that Jesus truly existed, but they consider it fact that he is the son of God and that he also rose from the dead. When you’re a kid it’s easy to believe this, because everything is believable when you’re a kid and that’s ok. Shit, I was pissed off when I realized there weren’t any three headed dragons flying around or any monsters under my bed, not so much the latter though.
With all of the speculation, I’m not saying that Jesus didn’t exist or wasn’t God. Nor am I refuting the idea that he rose from the dead. My aggravation is that if all that has been said about Jesus is true, people need to start thinking about the fact that they have been worshiping an omnipotent, zombie king for the last 2000 years. Wouldn’t that make an amazing script for George A. Romero? (Apparently, I'm not the first person to think about this.)
Seriously though, people don’t think much about the fact that Jesus rose from the dead after being brutally murdered. When was the last time you heard of the dead rising outside of sci-fi movies or ancient mythology? Most of us grew up being taught that everything in the Bible, especially regarding Jesus is infallible, yet we’ve never seen half the things in the Bible with our own eyes. You know, people walking on water, bodies of water being parted or even the blind being able to see. Outside of Benny Hinn conning the spiritually gullible through his Holy Ghost Circus these kind of miracles either seem outdated or something out of a bed time story.
Maybe that’s all the Bible really is though, one big bed time story about a prince (of peace) or a king (of kings) that comes to save us from the bad guy and ultimately ourselves. Seems like a good story to me. Jesus did say though that to enter the Kingdom of heaven you must have child-like faith. That was either a great way for the author to cover up his tracks or maybe, just maybe it’s all very true.
We’re going to be talking about the Resurrection, Jesus and Zombies tonight, Thursday, March 29th at Theology on Tap. You can find us at Corner Tavern in Little 5 Points between 7-9PM. Shoot me a message if you’d like to join us for a drink.
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
“This is a classy place, you know?”
“This isn’t a strip club. Girls just dance topless here.”
I couldn’t have disagreed more. After she got out of her chair and walked across the room I realized where the random comments were coming from. She was wearing crotch-less panties, a corset and thigh highs.
The first thing I saw when I walked through the doors of this hidden, basement establishment was a 45 year old woman dancing on top of the bar. Her breasts looked like pancakes and it appeared that there was some sort of syrup on them. You could have seen her if you were blind.
Do I stare in disgust or in amusement? Do I look away because she could be my mother or because it’s the right thing to do? I kept moving.
We made sure to sit in the corner because I had a sneaking suspicion that Vincent Vega was going to come through the door at any moment and things might get a little bloody.
Through the course of the night there was one decision that I couldn’t seem to make.
Who was creepier?
The guy sitting at the end of the bar who kept licking his lips and throwing one dollar bills as he was dreaming of eating flapjacks or the cracked-out, homeless guy who not only managed to pay the cover, but was on the dance floor moving like a Tourette’s Syndrome version of Michael Jackson while making his eyes-bug out.
Then came the lap dances.
Amazon women who was covered in bruises and actually looked like a man or the Grandma who probably rushed reading her grand children a bedtime story earlier in the evening so she wouldn't be late for work.
She honestly would’ve been hot 40 years ago, maybe even 30. My ribs felt like they were breaking as I laughed at my horrified friend. I’ve known him for 18 years and I had never seen him so afraid. We weren’t getting any special treatment though apparently she spreads her vagina for everyone. My laughter managed to suppress the vomit that kept trying to exit my system.
After dismounting the scarred young man she leaned down and asked us if she went long enough because she was already tired. We gave her a thumb’s up.
“You get worn out doing this at 60.” She said.
Sunday, March 25, 2007
Oh, the suspense.
Our first meeting with the consultant was corporate. As we all gathered in the conference room we were introduced to “Rick”. He told us his sole purpose was to help us refocus on how we do business in the office and the marketplace. “Branding” within the office sounds painful.
Rick proceeded to go around the room and interrogate all of us.
“What’s your name?”
“What do you do?”
“What makes you successful?”
“How can we help you do your job better?”
He didn’t ask anything original, but at least he seemed sincere.
I might have fallen asleep if it wasn’t for everyone interrupting each other to make one another look better. I felt like I was in the middle of a corporate circle jerk. The object of their lust: Each Other
…and it was running down all of their faces.
It was fucking disgusting, but at least they’re loyal.
To be honest with you, I’m not sure what was thicker in the room, the fear or the bull shit. It’s as though they all felt like their jobs were on the line and the only way to save their own ass was by shoving themselves as far as they could up someone else’s.
Finally, he came around to me.
“Johnny, what makes you successful?”
I stalled and thought to myself, Truth or Bull Shit?
My decision was a quick one.
“Honestly Rick, I’d have to say it’s partially because I don’t fucking give a shit mixed with never listening to what my bosses say and topped off with creating my own strategies to sell our product.”
He stopped the meeting and I was immediately made a partner. They tripled my salary and gave me all of the bonuses they’d screwed me out of. Not only was I given a company credit card to expense anything work related, but they paid my mortgage and gave me the keys to the newest company car that the owner had previously been driving.
Billy in customer service started tugging on my arm.
“Johnny…Johnny…Hey man…Rick asked you a question.”
All eyes were on me. I stared back like a deer in head lights.
Fumbling my words I blurted out “Oh…I agree.”
“It’s alright Johnny, seems like we lost you there for a sec.”
After dozing off in a meeting, I’m sure that they probably wanted to lose me forever.
“Anyway, back to the question.“
I nodded in anticipation to try and make up for zoning out.
“What would you say makes you successful?”
Tuesday, March 20, 2007
There are lots of things that I hate about being in a sales position, but today I’m just going to briefly talk about one of them.
Are we so socially retarded that when we first meet a client, whether it be on the phone or in person that we have to fall back on talking about the weather to keep a conversation going?
Seriously, the fucking weather?!?
I’d rather talk about who’s going to be on The View tomorrow morning. God that was painful to type. I'm lying, but at least I'd rather hear about their kids that I will never meet or where they're going on vacation, as long as they don't talk about whether or not it's going to rain while they're there.
The only people I know who talk more about the weather than sales people are my fucking grandparents. I’m sure your grandparents are the same way. Conversations about their failing health, which results in being prescribed 32 different kinds of medication that they can’t take when it’s raining, almost takes up the rest of their daily communication. Ultimately, it causes them to start talking about the weather again, full circle baby.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not making fun of my grandparents completely, but more so calling out sales people’s declining conversation etiquette.
I’ll admit that from time to time I fall in to the “How’s the weather up there?” conversation. Shit happens.
Honestly though, I’d rather sit in silence and listen to you type on your keyboard while ignoring me, than talk about the wind chill factor in
Monday, March 19, 2007
Saturday, March 17, 2007
Friday, March 16, 2007
Life seemed like one big innuendo that was merely a prelude to God knows what.
It was like trying to say a word that he couldn’t pronounce or a lost recollection of a faded memory, always on the tip of his tongue, but never able to be uttered.
Finding that it could only be articulated in a drunken haze or in a dream like state, he would wake up with new vigor each morning, despite his hangover, ready to embrace his destiny.
Unfortunately, he was forced to not only hide what fulfilled him, but also dispose of the hope that was forged in his mind from the previous night of sleep.
All of his desires, dreams and fantasies were exercised every morning as the hot water poured over him in the shower.
Though it was an act of love, still they were strangled and washed quietly down the drain.
Tuesday, March 13, 2007
As I was chained and rotting in my cubical yesterday, a co-worker of mine, Frank, who momentarily escaped his own personal 9-5 hell, was strolling around the building when he decided to stop by my Fortress of Solitude.
This guy and I have only a few things in common, but they’re the essentials. We both like beer and we both hate our jobs, so most of our conversations revolve around lying to one another about why we’re here and what we’re supposed to be doing. We’re basically like blood brothers in a corporate fraternity, minus the douche-baggery that is alive and well in your regular frat. We’d fit in well with Lambda Epsilon Omega in Old School.
Frank: Hey dude.
Johnny: What’s going on Sizzle (We have many nick names in our office)?
Frank: You got some big booty hoes in your back seat!
Johnny: What the fuck are you talking about?
Frank: I parked next to you after lunch.
Frank: There’s an open magazine in the back seat of your car with two big booty hoes posing, thought you might like to know.
Johnny: I don't buy porno.
Frank: Just saying man.
When we got out to my car, lo and behold, there were some big booty hoes in my backseat.
Johnny: "It must've opened up to that when I threw it back there. Shit!"
Fortunately, one of my other buddies had parked on the other side of me. The magazine that was showcasing these fine young women is a local news and events publication that is distributed free of charge. They manage to get by on the proceeds of advertisements.
It appears that they don’t turn anyone down though, as the main text across the top of the ad read: $5 Dollar Dances.
Monday, March 12, 2007
The day after trying out for his high school’s basketball team, his coached told him he was cut due to his lack of touch when it came to shooting. But after he was elected team “manager” he made sure to pee in all of the water bottles before games and practice his touch while he secretly watched the cheerleaders change after practice.
When he told his wife that he wanted to have an open relationship because she wasn’t quenching his sexual appetite she simply said “no”. After his plea was rejected, he began to drink excessively so that he could at least see two of her.
Being the model employee that he was at a major sales company for a number of years, he finally decided to ask for a promotion that would hopefully be accompanied by a pretty hefty raise. When his boss shot down his request he started stealing customers credits card numbers to compensate for his lack of salary. His actions were justified in his mind by credit card fraud protection.
On Thanksgiving Day he surprised his undeserving parents with an all expense paid cruise to Jamaica for Christmas. At dinner that night, they told him that they were disappointed in him and that he had no future because he still wasn't married. He decided to put a down payment on a couple’s grave plot for next year’s present and told them that he looked forward to their future together.
When he realized he was headed down a path to a horrible after life, he decided to start attending church and tithe double that which was expected of him. But when the members of the congregation stopped talking to him and only about him, due to his recent separation from his wife, he decided to start spending his tithe money on porno magazines. When he was finished using them for his own purposes, he would cut out the most vulgar pictures and tape them inside the hymnals after each service. Think anal penetration meets Softly and Tenderly.
Life seemed to have a knack for not only kicking him while he was down, but aiming for where it counts. He didn’t let this dampen his spirits though. Through it all, he felt like he did walk away with a special skill that only a few could master. He liked to call it an improvised response.
His shrink thought it was just a fancy way to say revenge.
Friday, March 09, 2007
Drum Solo Fucker!
Yeah, I want to rock n’ roll
Who cares if it’s late
Hurry! Deal the cards
Action is on you, All In!
My Aces hold up
Irish in our hearts
We all shout “Erin Go Braugh”
Car bombs for us all!
I am a sinner
Purgatory awaits me
It sure beats hell though
Britney Spears is bald
Anna Nicole Smith is dead
Sorry, I don’t care
Friday’s is shitty
I do not like to eat there
Where is all your flair?
Ninja Turtles Rule
Go Ninja, Go Ninja, Go!
Shredder is dead, dude.
Thursday, March 08, 2007
Anyway, Cog over at Driving the Flies awarded me with a "Thinking Blog Award".
Here's what he had to say about me:
"Wildly uneven, but when he’s on, he’s on. Consider this a shove to get you back out on stage, Johnny."
Wildly uneven, if that doesn't sum up my existence. Not sure about the stage though, definitely not Broadway. I can't sing or dance.
Thanks for the compliment and award Cog. It's much appreciated. Now I'm supposed to "pay it forward" so to speak.
God Damn! I hated that fucking movie. Not because it was about doing good deeds, but because they tried to knock it out of the park by manipulating your emotions. Bastards. Shit just pisses me off. That is neither here nor there, but honestly, how many second graders die in a knife fight?!?
Blogs that make me think, I would've put Cog, but he beat me to it and I'm sure there's a "no tag back" rule. He put Caustic Bunny too! I'll play by the rules. I do have a few tricks up my sleeve though.
1. Blog for Nick- I met Nick playing poker. He doesn't really play poker anymore, but he was a damn good card player. When I first started reading his blog he didn't update very often, but he seems to have his routine down now. Nick's one of the nicest dudes I've ever met and he's quite insightful and very original.
2. Confessional Highway - Recently, I joined a site called Indie Bloggers. The site showcases the talent of other bloggers who don't really fit into a mold. I came across Deezee's blog there. Deezee is very creative and I always enjoy reading the intriguing short stories and essays posted there. Seriously, check this shit out!
3. Throwing Roses - This guy is my old roommate. He's changed his blog name a couple of times so I'm just going to stick with this one. Matt writes about anything from Religion to Pop Culture. He might post an essay about homosexuality in the church one day and some wisdom from the X-Files the next. Regardless, he always leaves me thinking.
4. K Farmer - K fucking rules. She's old enough to be my mother and we live two completely different lives, but we both have a love for outlaw country music and throwing back some brews. She recently quit her job and started working on her farm full time. A neat lady with a fun Blog. You might hear a story about a long lost friend or see some pictures of chickens. You never know what she's going to have up, but her wisdom and advice is always very heartfelt. Not to mention it's been fun to watch her grow as a writer.
5. Shaunna Faye - I know Shaunna in real life. We don't hang very often, but I'm glad she writes in her blog. She's kinda quiet, but I think she also might be afraid of me. That might explain a lot.
I'm passing the "Thinking Blog" off to her because she explains the events in her life in a very real, but not "I'm updating my LJ" kinda way.
Don't consider these awards to be tags. Feel free to pass it on if you'd like. Thought I'd do it though because I love it when people write, especially people who are good at it and keep getting better. I appreciate all of these bloggers a lot and I hope they keep it going as long as they can.
Wednesday, March 07, 2007
Looking deep into his soul through the reflection of the mirror, he felt like he saw someone else in there.
“I hate you!”
Meaning, himself of course…
Eyes were averted by the razor that she had shaved her legs with earlier in the evening. It would make a great accessory, like a wrist watch, but he used it as an instrument instead.
He felt like he was doing geometry, maybe architecture, definitely art!
Cold metal on warm skin, warm blood on cold metal, warm flesh on cold tile, he never planned on dying so close to a toilet…
The floor was now wet, but not from moisture.
It wasn’t as painful as he once imagined.
It was like watching TV without any reception, just gray and fuzzy.
Painted red like an Indian War Chief going in to battle he started to rethink his actions when it finally dawned on him.
Tuesday, March 06, 2007
The jackpot for the Mega Millions lottery is fucking huge!
350 Million Dollars!!
It hasn’t been this big in a long time. People are getting crazy. I talked to some guy last night who bought a ticket for every possible power ball number that could be drawn. I’m not so sure that’s such a great strategy though.
He’s bound to hit at least one of the power balls, but after that he only has one chance for the rest of his numbers to be drawn. Doesn’t seem like a very sound strategy, but then again we do call him “Rain Man”. I wish I could say it was because he’s a genius and not because he’s always asking everyone when their birthday is.
Ever so often I find myself day dreaming about winning the lottery, making little promises to God that I’ll do “good” with it if He would just grace my ticket with the winning numbers. If I don’t block it out I’m usually reminded that I rarely do good with the money I currently have.
Of course I’ll take care of all of my loved ones. Friends and family are good for life, unless they cross me. Some homeless shelter would receive some big check from me and my face would be all over the news. Everyone would rejoice. I’d be the man. I'd be a hero. I’d be on Conan!
All of the little people would praise me as I do the hard work of pulling out my big wallet to save the day. After writing the check I could go party with all of my new found friends at some posh charity dinner thrown by Larry King in my honor. God bless everyone!
More cars than a Lexus dealership!
Business cards printed on the back of Ipods!
My own charter jet for world travel!
This could all be mine if I just win the lottery tonight.
I’m a shit head, but it’s not going to keep me from buying $10 worth of tickets on my lunch break today.
Monday, March 05, 2007
Trying to be patient while waiting for your name to be called is always harder than I imagined. This is just the preliminary waiting room anyway. We all know that once you get out of the “corporate stall” they shove you into a smaller room where everything appears to be sterile.
The objects in the glass jars seem odd. I don’t recall bloody syringes being so openly displayed, with second glance they’re filled to the brim with cotton balls. I’m seeing things. Add delusional to the list of my many ailments. Check!
My anxiety peeks when the door starts to crack open. It’s just the nurse to check my vitals and go down the checklist of diseases. She’s fat. Why are nurses always fat? Maybe the Doc hires them so the patients don’t feel so bad about themselves.
The “screening process” is one of my least favorite parts of the whole visit. Never have I wanted to disclose any information regarding my condition to a nurse. I feel like as soon as she leaves the room her report will go straight to the other nurses regarding my issues. She leaves and I can already hear the other nurses cackling like a bunch of gossiping hens sitting on their eggs with nothing better to do but ridicule me for being nuts. Maybe I should just add – hearing voices and paranoia to the list of my problems. Check and check!
They think I’m nuts because nurses can never pin point why I’m here. It’s understandable because I’ve always been a little off. The Doc is my buddy though and if he doesn’t prescribe me any drugs he checks for cancer and gives me a pep talk about how my ticker is still ticking. He knows I’m crazy and need peace of mind. Usually he suggests a psychologist. I never go. I need pills.
Doc never turns me away. He told me once that he’d be out of a job if the majority of his patients got their heads straightened out, hearing that made me feel not so alone. When he finally arrives he goes down his own checklist and shines lights in my eyes, ears and mouth. My pulse is good and my chest only hurts because of an inflamed wall that’s caused by an imaginary ulcer I have.
He knows why I’m here though. Drugs… All of my prescriptions have run out and he’s the magic man. As I bring up subject he just smirks and with two letters he shuts me down: NA.
“I’m not going to be your own personal drug dealer anymore. You have an addictive personality. There’s nothing physically wrong with you. You just need to clear your system of pills and go see a shrink.”
I couldn’t stand any of those 12 step programs. They traded in their drug addictions for religious superstitions. No thank you. Popping pills and not feeling bad about it sure as hell beats smoking 2 packs a day and drinking a pot of coffee while constantly repenting and trying to make amends for every one you screwed over.
“This intervention is over.”
I storm out of his office, but not before paying my $15 co-pay.
Friday, March 02, 2007
You’d think that I would’ve learned by now, but sometimes I can’t resist getting involved. If you knew me a decade ago you wouldn’t believe what I’ve turned into. It’s not completely awful, but I’m a true Devil’s Advocate. Knowing the flaws of both sides allows me to be pretty effective.
Maybe I do it to be an asshole, maybe I do it to fuck with their heads, but maybe, just maybe I do it because I want people to think more clearly and to not be so blinded to what they’ve always been told. The answer to why I do it is probably, all of the above.
Believe it or not, I do actually care though.
Working in an office with a bunch of Fundamental Christians can be great practice for my art, but at the same time I try to respect other’s beliefs. It’s hard though. One part of me wants to make fun of them and belittle what they believe, but then again at the core of it all, I believe it too. The other side of me wants to ring their necks and ask them if they really understand what they believe in and why do they believe so blindly.
In retrospect, it’s me that I would be making fun of. It’s my neck that I want to put my hands around. Choking the life out of my superstitious, judgmental, condescending self that knew all, but in the end realized that I know nothing.
My hatred is aimed at what I see in them,
It’s easy to understand what you hate when you see it in your own reflection.
What I despised most was the condemnation, not aimed so much aimed towards others, but myself. Never was I good enough. Finishing the race was not an option, but I doubted I could do it. Guilt set in. Shame took me to new depths. The burden on my back drove me to my knees.
“I thought this whole thing was supposed to be about peace and grace. Didn’t you say that Your yoke was easy and Your burden light? I feel like shit for everything I do. Where’s this so-called peace that surpasses all fucking understanding? If it exists it sure as hell isn’t in this fucking religion.”
Those words were never uttered, but that’s how I felt. Saying those things would only make me feel terrible, cursing and doubting were sinful.
My burdens were left when I turned my back.
I let it all go, but I’m still reminded of it on a daily basis through my co-workers and the “Christians” that I come across in life. Their zeal is beautiful, but zeal without knowledge is dangerous.
Reliving the past places the weight of a new burden on my shoulders, but this time it’s different.
It’s for them.
Blogging seems a lot like MST3K to me. Like critics we sit back and comment on the happy, sad and ridiculous moments of our every day lives that play out before us just like a movie. Sometimes, it’s an Oscar nominated performance, but most the time it seems like a B movie.
We might not be trapped in a spaceship that is being hurled towards God knows what while being driven mad by below par acting, but it sure seems like it sometimes.
You can’t always change the channel on the movie you’re watching. Just remember though, that no matter how bad the film can get, it always makes it a little more bearable if you can poke a few jokes at it.