Infectious Artistry: Keeping the Orifice Of Human Understanding From Puckering
Poverty tends to be a common affliction amongst the artistic of every medium. Edgar Allan Poe, Dickinson, Mary Shelley, Emily Bronte, Dante Alighieri, H. P. Lovecraft, Oscar Wilde, and Herman Melville are all hailed as literary giants and all died virtually penniless. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Robert Johnson, Billie Holiday, Judie Garland, and Marvin Gaye created angelic music, yet all joined the heavenly choir broke. Vincent Van Gogh, Rembrandt, and Monet could replicate nature's beauty with little more than paint and canvass, but they too entered the gates of heaven as destitute souls. Sometimes it is only after great artists die that publishers, music industry moguls, and gallery owners reveal the full brilliance of the deceased to the world. Ultimately, they gain great wealth from the works of those who can no longer benefit from monetary wealth. Can artists prosper alongside those who sell their work to the public? Of course. We see it with the likes of Frank McCourt, the Beatles, and Andy Warhol. My question is does it matter? Did the great artistic geniuses of the past create to fill their pockets? They did at least to a point because an artist's got to eat (I've heard they're always starving). Still, would they create even if there wasn't a penny to be had for their work? Duh. For those of a creative bent, withholding the art that rages within would be as impossible as holding in the Arby's mystery meat sandwich a person ate the day before. In short, the creative disciples of all mediums must create because if they don't the virulent infection of artistic expression stewing within the bowels of their souls can only be purged by projectile, explosive art. What matters is that the artist has what they need to continue to express their creativity. Unfortunately, except for a few lucky bastards, this often means working a nine to five. Working a steady gig insures that both the body of the artist and the body of the artists work remains healthy. Thankfully, the art virus will enter remission just long enough for the infected to make the return home from the daily work commute which insures that the infected can continue to spread .
When I was in high school, I had an AP English teacher who wrote great poetry. Looking back, my favorite poems that she shared had an almost spoken word feel. While most of her work was silky, delicate, and colored in shades of Whitman, I preferred when her verse took on a blatant, raw, and a caustic kind of honesty that scarred the listeners thoughts. Though brilliant (and I'm hoping published in poetry anthologies), Mrs. Fitzgerald also had bills to pay, therefore she taught and inspired a love for the word in others. Her husband, was an artist who taught art at Shasta College, a community college in Redding. He also did graphic art work on the side. I only saw a few pieces Mrs. F shared of Mr. F's work (he was eclectic and seemed to do a bit of everything), but to my novice artistic eye he was also very gifted. I always thought of the Fitzgerald's as old school hippies whose jobs allowed them to pursue their art while also keeping them fed, housed, and with enough cash to attend the occasional Grateful Dead show. Though I don't know for sure, it seems that the experiences, problems, and interactions the Fitzgerald's have in the work world may also have provided inspirational sustenance for their artistry. I can't say that Mrs. Fitzgerald's poems and short stories are well known or that Mr. Fitzgerald's pieces sell for six figures in a fine art galleries around the world. Of course, I think their work is worthy of such attention, but I don't think it's enjoyed this level of commercial notoriety. However, so long as the bills were paid, I believe the Fitzgerald's were content to be artistic typhoid Mary's spreading the artistic virus they carried through their work to whoever chose to be susceptible to the infection.
So, what about the great creators who created masterpieces while suffering in poverty? Would they have created even if they knew that their brilliance would go unnoticed until they slept eternally in their pauper's grave? I think they would have pursued art even if it meant living in the gutter. The desire to recreate, reinvent, and reexamine beauty with word, paint, stone, or melody is more visceral than the desire to become wealthy or even the hope to someday be dressed up as a German school boy and spanked with a rubber chicken by a 200 pound Polish lady body builder wearing a Swedish milkmaid costume. No, the desire to create art is an all consuming, virulent compulsion to bend the human condition over and repeatedly thrust new visions, textures, sounds, and ideas in until the orifice of understanding has expanded. Let publishers, art dealers, and the music industry reap the benefits of the dead. Those of us infected by the creativity virus must continue to hump the human senses sans lube because the orifice of human understanding is always in danger of puckering especially when it is cruelly exposed to the likes of the Harry Potter books, Thomas Kinkade paintings, and the sounds of Taylor Swift or Nickelback.
Can those who create poetry, literature, art, and music enjoy monetary success alongside the opportunistic executives who specialize in selling the various artistic mediums? Of course. However, the person infected with the artistry virus will create no matter what. The desire to be wealthy will always be secondary to the feral desire to produce beauty. So to those also infected with the virus of creativity, I say we much continue to go at human understanding doggy style, because if we don't I'm afraid Franklin Mint collectors plates, reality television, and (gag) country music will become the new, much diminished standard for what can be considered art.
Some Listings From One Who’s Sanity’s Missing
The 1-3 Reasons My Cat May Be A CIA Agent.
1. He can’t account for where he was at the time Kennedy was assassinated.
2. I keep finding weird messages scratched in his litter box that might be secret codes such as:
a)The hairball is wet and spongy. Repeat…the hairball is wet and spongy. Please advise.
b) The dog humped the mail lady’s leg. Abort! Abort!
c) The black alley cat is in heat…the black alley cat is in heat. Request catnip protocol!
d) The rottweiler knows it's not Tootsie Rolls in the litter. Situation now Charlie Foxtrot!
3. The cat’s scratching post has weird antennae sticking out the top with tiny glowing red lights on the end. I swear that every once in a while I hear someone speaking Russian I'm scooping the litter box.
The 2-3 Reasons Alien’s Left Without Bothering
1. The aliens felt they were being racially profiled. They resented that humans think all
aliens anal probe everyone they abduct. This isn’t true, what really happens is they take
the abductee to dinner and a movie first and then they see where things go from there.
2. Earth has developed a reputation as as the Tajuana of the galaxy. Oh, some aliens
might've occasionally visited Earth, bought a poncho, had some tacos, and enjoyed a bit
of low-class debauchery. However, as some curious and naughty aliens learned the hard
way, if they stay too long, they run the risk of contracting the dirty trifecta of STI’s:
gonorrhea; chlamydia; and genital warts courtesy of a prostitute who goes by the name
of Wanda, or Juan, depending on the alien's favorite flavor. Being unaware of all the
dangers involved in visiting Earth, the alien life forms would've likely drank the water
giving themselves a raging case of dysentery. As one can imagine, the 1000 light year
return trip home (with no rest stops until the Andromeda galaxy) without access to
antibiotics to treat the STIs would be painful. In addition, the dysentery fueled Old
Faithful-like diarrhea contaminating and overwhelming their space craft's only
nutritional waste disposal unit would be less than pleasant. Upon their arrival home,
the aliens would quickly warn their peers via the intergalactic travel blog to avoid Earth
at all costs.
3. Recently, as an alien vacation vessel entered Earth's orbit, the ship's sensors
accidentally tapped into a radio signal that played Taylor Swift followed by Justin
Bieber and rounded out with Coldplay. The ship's crew immediately concluded that
the horrific noise was some deadly new form of auditory defense system designed to
repel alien incursion. Little did they know, the aliens barely escaped before a much
stronger country music signal was picked up by their sensors. One verse of, “She
Thinks My Tractor’s Sexy” would have overwhelmed their artificially intelligent
navigation system. Exposure to this drawling audio drool would have transformed
their normally artificially intelligent intergalactic GPS system into an artificially stupid
navigation system. The result? The alien spacecraft would’ve veered off course, only to
be inescapably caught in the Earth’s gravitational pull. With the artificially intelligent
guidance system offline, the spacecraft would've been sent spinning out of control
plummeting towards Earth at hundreds of miles an hour until it’s lifeless, blackened,
and melted hull finally crashed into the beer booth at the San Joaquin County Fair. It
would've been the alien equivalent to the sinking of the Titanic, minus the god awful
Celine Dion song.
Why the FDA Approves of Nicotine and Alcohol
I’m sure that the FDA considers nicotine and alcohol as an inexpensive way to cull the population with minimal effort. Who needs war and disease to keep the population manageable? Let those self-destructive folks who overindulge in tobacco and alcohol cull themselves. It’s an efficient and inexpensive win-win solution to to Earth's increasing problem of overpopulation!
1. The FDA understands that nicotine operates as a self-administered form of evolutionary pressure that weeds out those who lack common sense. It allows people to accelerate natural selection. Smoke some more! If someone is too self-destructive and dismissive of their health and the health of others to heed the Surgeon General’s warning on their pack of Marlboro’s, do we really want them to procreate? Thankfully, smokers aren’t exactly prime mating material. What with their always sexy, phlegmy-hacking-wheezing-hoarse-metastasis filled voice and all. Now if we could just keep smokers from poisoning children and non-smokers around them it would be a perfect solution to Earth's pesky overpopulation problem.
2. Alcohol: What? You’re going to quit drinking because you’ve got advanced stage
sclerosis of the liver? Fuck that quitting shit and have a drink on me! After all, you
won’t be considered for a liver transplant because, you’d more than likely just wreck the
new one. So, you might as well go out in a blaze of glory! Sure, you’ll be so jaundiced
that you look like Winnie the Pooh gone horribly, horribly wrong, but we’ve all got to
die sometime, right? Just don’t drive, okay. Killing yourself is one thing, killing others
by driving intoxicated, well that is the ultimate state of douche baggery. Just remember,
play your cards right and you’ll end up in a hospice that’s liberal with the morphine and
you’ll pass away on an opiate cloud.
3. The FDA is in the middle of a complex longitudinal study seeking to understand the
paradox that exists where those who are the least morally, emotionally, psychologically,
financially, and mentally capable people of child baring age can conceive and deliver
children with rodent-like efficiency and quantities while also having a remarkably low
infant mortality rate. It’s called the “Keeping CPS in Business Paradox.” Oh, it’s a bit
wordie, but it's also about as accurate as one can get. Like peanut butter to a mouse in a
maze, or cocaine laced alfalfa pellets to a rat, alcohol and nicotine serve as self-
administered behavioral reinforcers for the human longitudinal study subjects. Without
these, self-administered rewards, it would be difficult to replicate the conditions where
these mysterious, improbable totally irresponsible, and most likely to end in a felony in
some way conceptions occur.
Excuses to Call in and Go Fishing
1. Hi Boss! I can’t come to work today because I must spend an absurd amount of money to participate in the only sport that might be more boring than golf. In fact, after purchasing the fishing license, tackle, life jacket, and urine sample quality beer, I will likely have spent more money than I would taking my entire family to a five-star sea food restaurant. During this unscheduled time off, I will absorb enough sun while sitting in a boat to develop every skin cancer known to medical science. I will also likely contract West Nile Virus from the mosquitos around whatever mud hole I’m forced to fish at. Finally, my IQ will drop between 10 and 20 points as a result of second-hand exposure to country music. Let it be noted that not only will I be bored into a sea cucumber level of consciousness, but I hate fish, so I won’t want to eat whatever I might catch.
2. Hey boss! I want to live dangerously today instead of going to work. So, I’m going
fishing! As self imposed punishment for calling in, I will force myself to eat whatever I
catch. By eating my catch, I will be exposing myself to carcinogenic microplastics. I will
also be ingesting enough pesticides and herbicides from the agricultural run off into the
fish's habitat that my piss could used as both a pesticide and defoliant. In fact, just two
milliliters of my tinkle would be strong enough to clear a 100 acre almond orchard of
every spider mite, caterpillar, foxtail, or blade of crab grass that would dare try to take up
residence amongst the trees. Finally, I could luck out and contract flesh eating bacteria
while standing in water infested with billions of microbes! Who needs expensive
liposuction or gym memberships? If I get flesh eating bacteria while fishing, the inches
and pounds will literally just melt away!
3. Hi Boss! You know how some people will call out sick to play hooky and have fun?
Well, I’m calling in, because I'm going fishing, but I promise I won’t be having any fun.
Wait! What’s That Hiding in the Corner?
1. Alone in a corner it sits, silently gathering the dust of neglect. It was meant to sing, wail, and growl, but now it’s just a stagnant wooden ornament on a plastic stand. She said it was her dream, her yearning, her destiny, and she wanted it at any cost (so long as someone else paid whatever the cost would be). So, he gave in to the weakness that a father has for his daughter and bought her the candy apple red, Fender Squire guitar and the practice amp, that he imagined would be the source of a lot of feedback and even more headaches. Elated to have what she wanted, she took lessons for a month and said the instructor at Guitar Center gave her the creeps (dad knew the teacher and he’s a great guy) and she wanted to quit. Other teachers? No, she declared that her hands were too small for the fret board and besides, the strings ruined her perfectly painted black fingernails. So much for her dreams of becoming the lead guitar player for My Chemical Romance, he sighed as visions of money going down the drain filled his head.
2. The smell hits you first. The stench is a weird menage of sweat, mold, aged toe jam, and
teenage skin grease with just a touch of peanut butter thrown in for good measure and a
sense of mystery. A glance in the rooms’ dusty corner reveals the source of this unholy
reek. It’s a pile of dirty clothes sitting on the bedroom floor. Oh, but these aren’t just
any clothes. THESE FILTHY CLOTHES belong to a sixteen-year-old boy. Shirts,
socks, grayish boxer briefs, gym shorts, and jeans have created a rancid, alien ecosystem
just beneath a Slipknot poster and across from the bedroom's only window. The
window's glass radiates the warmth of the sun providing life-giving heat to the
biological disaster growing within its rays. This natural warmth then accelerates the
fermentation process which takes place in the boxer briefs and acts as an incubator for
the slowly evolving lifeforms which feed on the abundant grease and dead skin cells f
found like nutritious veins of filth throughout the two-foot-high mountain of polyester,
rayon, and cotton. If a microbiologist could examine just one square millimeter of the
clothing under a microscope, they’d likely piss themselves and call the CDC. However,
there is no microbiologist present and no scientists in hazmat gear sent in to contain
whatever the pile of clothes has become. Instead, it’s just mom or dad, armed with little
more than a Tide Pod, and a cap full of bleach who must face the horrific pile of
mutating, logoed biological matter. That which grows on the Stranger Things T-shirt
has already gained the intellectual equivalent of our ancient ancestor homo-habilis and
it laughs in the face of Tide and bleach. Nothing short of a full exorcism coupled with
a multi-stage nuclear warhead can end the foul new life that is now growing within the
threads of the teenager’s sweaty collection of Haines and Fruit of the Loom.
3. There it sits silent, rusting, and unused. I’m not sure if it even works anymore.
Hmmm. I’m not sure if this can be salvaged at all. It looks like it’ll need a new set of
parentheses, the commas should be turned, and the periods ported and polished. Who
let the simile and metaphor reservoirs run dry? Uh oh. The imagination to creation
transmission has seized and the passion gear has melted to the prosaic lifter. I’m not sure
if any of this is rebuildable. Wow. it keeps getting worse! The plot generator and idea
alternator are fried, and I don’t think they make replacement parts anymore. The
adjective pump motor is cracked and when did the verb belt get cut? Wonderful! The
pronoun gaskets are leaking sentence fragments. Well, I guess my creative writing engine
is shot. So, I won't be taking a long written journey anytime soon. Oh well, I guess I’m
just a creative pedestrian. but at least I'm honest. I didn't sneak onto the publication
train using falsified talent tickets like the writers of the print covered toilet paper that are
the Harry Potter, Twilight, and Fifty Shades of Gray books.
God and the Bromance With Men
The idea of God(s) having a gender has always interested me. If there is a great creator I have to say that God or Deity Numéro Uno must be male. Now, I don't think the creator of the universe is female because of some sexist ideal. Quite the contrary. The reason I believe God is male is because there is NO WAY a female God would fuck things up this bad. I'm not a theologian, but if Judeo-Christianity is correct in any way then I have plenty of evidence that to back my theory that God must be of the testicular sort.
The story of Adam and Eve is a good place to start because it is, "In the beginning." The very male god placed Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden within shopping distance of the Tree of Knowledge. Oh, he tells them not to mess with it, but then he lets the serpent into the garden to fuck things up and manipulate them into taking a big bite. When Adam and Eve succumb to the serpent and partake of this naughty tree, what happens? God flips his lid and kicks Adam and Eve out of the garden, but the punishment doesn't stop there. Nope. Adam has to work for a living which is getting off real easy compared to Eve. Poor Eve gets a menstrual cycle and risks her life every time she gives birth as punishment. Oh yeah, that's fair. Ultimately, Adam and Eve are set up by God to fail and when they do, he goes all Old Testament on them. Basically, God blames the victim and then punishes them when it was HE who was negligent and showed horrible parenting skills. A female god wouldn't have allowed the situation to happen in the first place.
How would a female god have handled the situation? Well, a female deity WOULD NEVER have put Adam and Eve near something they were forbidden to touch. That would be like a mommy today letting her toddler play with a plugged in toaster at the edge of the tub during bath time. Nope, a female God would first-human-proof the garden before allowing them in to play. Now let's talk about the serpent, or devil in disguise. A female god wouldn't let the serpent into the garden because a good mom never allows her kids to fraternize with a bad influence. In today's terms, that would be like letting your daughter date any of my relatives which unless you want an son-in-law who's in prison all the time is not recommended. So, a more nurturing female god never would have allowed the shit to go down like it did nor would she have punished Adam and Eve when it was her fault they were put in the situation to begin with.
Okay, now let's talk about all the smiting that goes on. The male God has no problem wiping out entire populations with fire and brimstone, floods, or directing the Israelites to wipe out the long term residents of the, "Land of Milk and Honey." Let's be clear here. God uses a scorched Earth, no mercy approach which means that nearly ALL men, women, and children are smited from existence. Basically, if God felt a group was wicked, he either liquidated them himself or let the Moses Gang wipe them out. So much for the idea that children and babies are without sin. Apparently, when the male God decided to go all cataclysmic on a group of people it was too much of a bother to separate the innocent from their, "Wicked.' parents. A female god? First, it's doubtful she would go scorched Earth. It's wasteful and cruel. Second, if she did have to go all fire and brimstone she would've figured a way to get the little ones out.
For the last Biblical example, let's talk about Abraham. Abraham and his wife, Sara have the ultimate geriatric pregnancy (Sara is supposedly in her nineties) and bless the couple with a son, Isaac. Of course, the couple is ecstatic at having a baby and raise him well. Unfortunately, God decides to test Abraham and tells him to sacrifice Isaac. Isaac, knowing about God's tendency to smiteth when mad, chooses to do as he's told. Now, just before Abraham plunges the knife into Isaac, God call out, "Psych! Got ya! You don't have to do that!" Let me remind the reader that Abraham is OLD and the stress of the ordeal could have killed him. It's kind of a dick move. A female creator of the universe? This would never have happened. No female would ever needlessly put a child in danger or be so cruel as to tell a father to sacrifice his own kiddo.
From a historically verifiable perspective, God has always favored the men, giving them control over, well EVERYTHING! With the male of the species in control, humanity has become a tedious string of war, more war, oh let's have a bit of peace, now we're bored and greedy, so back to war we go! A female God would see this as pointless, wasteful, tragic, and she'd put a stop to it. Given God's macho affection for smiting and destruction, it stands to reason that he lets mankind murder itself as a weird kind of spectator sport.
Okay, finally the reason GOD MUST BE MALE is how he has allowed women to be treated by the men running things. In almost every culture, women have been treated as property, livestock, weaker, and totally inferior to men. They are often called the, "Weaker sex" which is the most absurd notion ever put forth by a man (of course). Frankly, I think that the subjugation of women has been ongoing because men are actually the weaker sex AND THEY KNOW IT, but are too selfish and arrogant to give up the control they've enjoyed since, well, just about forever!
Evidence? I got plenty. First, women carry life within them for 9 months allowing the little human parasite to take everything it needs from her all the while enduring a lot of discomfort and physical change. If that isn't bad enough, women then have to pass a decent sized baby (I always think seedless watermelon sized) through an opening the size of a smallish lemon. Who the fuck calls this weak? If men had to do it, we would have become extinct after the first pregnancy. Once the little one is born, the mother then devotes 100% of what she is to nurturing, protecting, and sacrificing everything for nearly two decades to raise her child to adulthood. All this while dealing with the less than ideal circumstances created by, yep you guessed it, MEN.
Men? We get distracted and lose interest too quickly to be the bearer and nurturer of future generations. As a result, humanity would likely become extinct in the aftermath of mankind's dereliction of parental duty. For example, a man would quickly lose interest in their needy baby and leave it for that nice pride of lions to take care of while he goes out to compare who's dick is bigger with his buddies. Or if the next door neighbor got a new chariot, he'd leave his baby on the edge of that nice warm volcano so he could check out the neighbor's chariot. Oh, and when mankind started to feel a little insecure about the size of its throbbing veiny love limb, it would drop the kids with whoever and go off to war.
Due to the sustained amount of pointless fuckery mankind has been allowed to engage in for pretty much forever, God must be of a sympathetic and equally masculine sort. A feminine God who understands the precarious nature of life and bringing life into the world, would have put a stop to the needless killing and destruction a long time ago.
Now even though God is likely manly, that doesn't mean women have to accept where man have forced them to exist. As a father of a beautiful, brilliant, compassionate, and kick ass 14 year old girl, I know that women are up to the challenge of changing things for the better. My little girl will go up against the biggest knuckle dragging, misogynistic troglodyte, there is. She will then proceed to outsmart, out work, out empathize, and out change things for the better than any man can. She will change things, but she can't do it alone. Ladies prosers, my wonderful, talented, capable, and generally ass kicking extended family, please join her in the feminine takeover of things. Here's my selling point. Man has managed to create enough weapons to exterminate all life (excluding lawyers and Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones), on Earth and allowed his greed to ignore the climate change going on. Having bigger missiles than a neighboring country is more important than peace. After all, life on Earth is overrated, isn't it? Plus, being able to drive massive, diesel, gas guzzling, and polluting trucks is more important than making sure that future generations don't have to deal with the dangerous weather patterns caused by a global warming. Ladies, you can and you will do better.
Now, it is unfortunate that humanity still requires a few males around to continue its existence and continued the existence of Monster Truck rallies. That means that many of you ladies have to find suitable male mates. I have established that women are superior, so how does a lady choose a suitable mate from an inferior gender? As a card carrying male, let me provide some guidelines: If during the finding of a mate the perspective male:
1. Uses phrases like, "No woman of mine" or "This is men's business." Run.
2. Cheats on you. Cheating on a partner demonstrates (this can be male or female) a serious lack of caring, lack of moral compass, the emotional maturity of a two-year old, the willingness to be cruel, and a level of selfishness that is beyond redemption. Once the cheating is uncovered proceed to kick said male in the nuts then proceed to rent a billboard near his place of employment with his picture on it and the following information:
a) The cheater couldn't find the G-spot with GPS, compass, Hubble Telescope, or Sacagawea to guide him.
b) The cheater currently has a particularly virulent strain of genital warts that is in full flare up.
c) The cheater is hung like an ingrown hair.
d) The douche bag cheated and shouldn't be trusted EVER AGAIN!
e) Cries out his mom's name during sex.
3. Being intellectually compatible is important. No matter what a man may do for a living or his education level, he should have a deep love of learning and desire to be better. This means that the perspective mate will read, choose a cause to fight for, stand up for women, and parent along side his mate.
4. That nice guy who is such a good friend and always there for you. He probably has a major crush on you, but is too shy to act on it. It's 2023 ladies, take initiative and consider the fact that your friendship may have the chance to grow. It's okay to test the waters.
5. If a guy starts talking about always being in the, "Friend Zone," run. This guy lacks the maturity to take responsibility for his circumstances and his inability to find a mate will always be the girl's fault.
6. While the male of the species is famous for thinking with their dicks, ladies can be just as guilty of thinking with their mommy parts when it comes to looking for a mate. Ladies, he may be 6' 5,'' have sixpack abs, be hung like a bull, and drive a Porsche, but remember, there is only so much fucking a person can do before they have to talk to their partner. Physical attraction is great, but when you realize that you actually have to talk to a person when fucking him is done, the stud may be an intellectual dud.
7. A sense of humor is sexy. If he makes you laugh, he may be able to make you moan too.
8. Money is a piss poor excuse to do anything in a relationship. Just because he has money doesn't mean he has the ability to be kind, decent, and respectful.
9. If you're like my daughter and guys aren't your thing, I don't blame you! Don't let that stop you from making a family for yourself. There are currently over 300,000 kiddos in foster care who would adore having two mommies!
10. Don't take relationship advice from Shallowgenepool. Really. It is a light weight miracle he's been married almost 18 years.
Someone Pass the Search Warrant
Thanksgiving in my family feels a lot like a circus freakshow you don't have to pay admission to. You won't find a family with more felonies, divorces, children conceived as a result of a, "Well, I don't know I was too drunk to remember" situation, or with more working knowledge of schedule 1 drugs than my family. So, picking THAT relative is difficult in my clan. However, there are certain mechanisms in place that limit the number of people who can attend one of my family's Thanksgivings. These mechanisms include:
1. Incarceration: More than one chair at my family's turkey day table is empty due to an aunt, uncle, or cousin receiving a most insistent invitation to spend the holiday at one of California's various correctional facilities.
2. House Arrest: It's not unusual for parole or probation to generously give one or more of my family members a fashionable, court ordered, ankle bracelet. Unfortunately, though the bracelets are an elegant and functional black appropriate for any occasion, my grandma's house was usually just outside of the bracelet's programed range.
3. Restraining Order: Some of my family members just seem to viciously rub each other the wrong way. Of course the friction caused by this angry rubbing needs to be addressed by the appropriate safety measures. The safety tool of choice in these too frequent occurrences in my family is a nice, cool, restraining order. Without the extinguishing effect of a well written restraining order, the friction between my family members could spark a fire which within minutes would set a good portion of Santa Clara, California ablaze.
4. Inner Family Debt: One family member owes another family member money (where the loaned money originated from is best left a mystery). As one can imagine, a confrontation with the holder of the debt would be both uncomfortable and potentially hazardous to the health of the poor schmuck who owes the money. The absence of the deadbeat during Thanksgiving dinner is questioned only once. When the word, "Money" is said in reply, the situation becomes completely understood.
Okay, so with the potential Thanksgiving guest list whittled down courtesy of California's penal system and familial fiscal irresponsibility, we can now answer the challenge question. The answer is simple. It could be anyone. There isn't a member of my family who isn't capable of taking a chainsaw-like attitude to the current limbs of my family tree thus pruning any possible joy away from the gathering. So, where does the ill will come from? That to deserves some analysis which I have provided:
A) History Raises its Ugly Head: Now, it's no secret that the majority of my aunts, uncles and cousins have cooked their brains to a charred well-done with recreational pharmaceuticals. As a result, most of my family probably couldn't tell you where their own nipples are standing naked in a snow storm. However, the one area of the brain that remains completely functional in spite of being soaked in various narcotics is the center of the brain that remembers old grudges. This amazing recall gets even more laser focused when a little alcohol gets involved. So, at some point, a slightly tipsy aunt will remind a sister that she fucked sister's high school boyfriend in the Wilcox High School's shower room. The resulting explosion and the aftershocks that follow can often be felt as far as Canada.
Side note: It is well known by the children of the two combating sisters described above that their mom's names and phone numbers are prominently displayed on all of the inside stall doors in every boys bathroom at Wilcox High School to this very day. Oh, we don't consider our mom's as former high school sluts, instead, we think of them as legends in their own time.
B) The Social Lubricant and Opportunity to Learn Your Miranda Rights: Now, there is a lot that can be said about age and experience. However, there is also a lot to be said about still having a functional liver and alcoholism on training wheels! Now, mom and Aunt Jennifer may be ready to start throwing right hooks at each other (unbeknownst to them the high school boyfriend at the center of their argument was also fucking their eldest sister), but the younger generation attending the Thanksgiving celebration wants in on the fighting too. So, cousins happily get hammered (one abstaining so he is sober enough to bail mom and Aunt Jennifer out of Jail later) before grandma breaks out the pumpkin and cherry pie.
Realizing this is going to be another ONE OF THOSE THANKSGIVINGS, grandma wonders if she should release a guest list to the Santa Clara Police Department prior to dinner next year. It would allow them to cross reference guest names with assigned parole and probation officers and also connect any outstanding warrants to the guest before Thanksgiving arrives. After all, they're always so polite when they put one of her children or grandchildren in the back of the cruiser. It'll make their jobs so much easier, besides, it's Thanksgiving and the men and women and blue are away from their families so that they can tase, cuff, and stuff one of her family into a police car.
C) AA Chips and Dip: Now, I must give a shout out to those relatives who've achieved sobriety in my family. They've proven that clean and sober can be done. Even more impressive is that they can also walk away from one of our family gatherings and remain sober, which is a FUCKING MIRACLE! Oh, they can cause trouble too, but it's usually because someone brings up an old beef or a story from the glory days when they were still using to see if they can be tempted to slip. Some will just be dicks and drink in front of them. So if the AA crowd at grandma's Thanksgiving throw down you can guarantee it's justified. Coincidentally, this is the group I used to hang out with at Thanksgiving. I knew my wallet wouldn't come up missing there and my girlfriend wouldn't be offered a quicky by one of my cousins in the guest bedroom.
So, to answer the question in simple terms, Thanksgiving at my grandma's was a lot like trying to navigate a mine field, blindfolded, on a pogo stick. Any one of us could make the meal slow torture because, well to be honest, we were all a bunch of fuck ups. Some were just better at hiding it.
The grandma noted here was my favorite person on the planet. She raised 4 children by herself after her husband committed suicide (she was pregnant with child number 4 when he died). The issues her kids had/have can be blamed on genetics and the fact that she worked 3 jobs to keep a roof over their heads. By the way, she obtained a mortgage and bought that house by herself in a time when women didn't regularly buy houses without a husband.
Grandma's biggest regret was the road her children and grandchildren would choose to follow, but it's hard to catch your kids doing drugs/playing back seat Barbie when you're working and never home. She also raised 1 grandchild because his mom loved heroin more than him. Finally, she contracted a disease that a grandma had no business catching while working in house keeping at a hospital. A misplaced needle in a trash bag changed out lives forever. Finally, when she was given the diagnosis and a prognosis of 2 years to live she told the doctor, "You're not God. We'll just see." That was 1994. She survived to see my children born 2006, 2009, and 2011 saying fuck all to that doctor's 2 year estimate. Sadly, she passed before my littlest guy came into the world, but I know wherever she is she's laughing at his silly dances and his delight in saying, "BOOTY" every chance he gets.
Love you grandma. I won't be attending any family Thanksgiving dinners until it' with you again.
Blessed Be the Assholes
Blessings are confusing. The human to human blessings are cut and dry. One person gives, does something for, or assists another with no expectation of reimbursement. What I can't understand is the blessings associated with higher powers. The criteria to earn such a blessing from a god(s) seems totally back-ass-wards. I mean, shouldn't blessings be given to those most in need or most deserving? This doesn't seem to be a required factor in the blesser towards the blessed. Call me cynical, but from what I can see, people who don't need or deserve blessings appear to be lavished with these godly bonuses, while the deserving, innocent, and needy more often than not, go without.
Please note, I don't equate blessings as material or monetary in every instance. However, if you have money, a situation that would ruin the life of an average person is a minor inconvenience. So, money doesn't buy happiness, but it does keep away many of the things that can make life difficult.
One only need look at the likes of Elon Musk or Donald Trump to see my point. These two individuals were born into extreme wealth, given every advantage, and are complete dicks. However, everything they touch seems to turn to gold. Let me explain.
Elon Musk once said that ending world hunger would cost 6 billion dollars and he promised to provide the 6 billion. The World Food Program has yet to see a dime of that promised cash. Pay up Elon! I've seen your net worth (225.5 billion) and 6 billion dollars is chump change to you! You promised the money you Eddie Munster looking fuck! Now let me ask, has karma bent Elon over fucked him dry because he failed to fulfill his promise? Nope. The blessings keep rolling in. Even his business failures don't faze him.
Now as to Donald Trump, the fucker was born into money and received every perk of the wealthy. He dodged the draft, daddy most likely bought his college degree, he bankrupted multiple companies, cheated on every wife he had, and has been caught in THOUSANDS of lies. Still, the fuck stick won the presidency Of course, Donald is facing some serious legal heat now on multiple fronts and has already been identified as a sexual predator, and guilty of fraud. Has it affected his second presidential run? As of now, nope. Many evangelicals still use their religion as knee pads while giving Trump an ideological blowjob and many conservative politicians continue to turn a blind eye to his stupidity to gain his approval. Even after being outed as a slime ball and facing jail time, he still leads in the polls! My guess is that if Trump is found guilty (he's also been caught intimidating witnesses and court officials) he will get off with a legal love tap on the wrist.
Let me ask, do either Musk or Trump deserve what they have? Given the opportunity to use what they have been given, have they made significant contributions to humanity? I'd have to say no. So, I'm not sure why whatever entity that controls things continues to bless the likes of Mr. Musk and Mr. Trump. Merit doesn't seem to be much of a factor.
Now, this is hardly a new phenomena with god(s). In the Bible, King David had one of his soldiers killed so he could fuck the soldier's wife. Despite this horrible act, David didn't lose his blessed status, he remained king, and continued to enjoy the perks as one of God's favorites. Anther example? How about Lott who offered his virgin daughters to a rape gang to protect angels that likely didn't need protection. He was blessed by being allowed to escape Sodom before god went all Old Testament on the city. Yet another example, Abraham was willing to forgo the sacred role as protector to his child and was willing to sacrifice his son because God told him to. God pulled a, "Oh, you don't actually have to do that. Your son can live. I was just testing you" just before Abraham buried the knife in his son's chest. Abraham was then named the father of many generations. How the flippity, five dollar hand-job fuck were these three despicable men worthy of blessings?
Okay, so who deserves blessings? That is easy. Anyone who does their best to be decent human beings, but still go without, those who have devoted their lives to serving others, and of course those who are incapable of true malice, children. Sadly, the blessings are few and far between for these deserving individuals.
A big example that comes to mind is Ryan White. Ryan was a 13 year old boy who had hemophilia and as a result occasionally needed blood transfusions. Unfortunately, during one such transfusion, he was given blood containing HIV. At the time Ryan contracted HIV and AIDS it was considered a death sentence. Still, Ryan and his mom became advocates for AIDS research, treatment, and ending the stigma associated with the disease. They ended up with very famous allies such as Elton John, John Mellencamp, and even Princess Diana. Didn't Ryan deserve a blessing? He contracted a disease he did nothing to deserve and then set out to help others who also suffered from the disease? Apparently not because Ryan died a month before he graduated high school. Wasn't god(s) paying attention? Or did Ryan's net worth fail to meet the thresh hold needed to qualify for a blessing.
On a personal note, I regularly receive babies on my caseload that were born exposed to drugs courtesy of CPS. Many of these babies suffer through painful, torturous withdrawal from whatever poisons mom exposed her unborn child to. I have never witnessed a newborn in withdrawal (Thank whatever deity has arranged that), but I have read medical reports. Babies in withdrawal find touch painful, they don't sleep, they often refuse to eat, and they suffer the same pain as an adult trying to kick opiates, meth, and alcohol. CAN SOMEONE PLEASE EXPLAIN TO ME WHY THESE LITTLE ONES DON"T DESERVE THE BLESSING OF BEING PROTECTED FROM THE SHIT MOM IS PUTTING IN HER BODY? Anyone? Any deity out there with a good answer?
Now I've heard that people who die or suffer through disease, sickness, and mental, physical or psychological abuse are allowed to suffer so that those around them can learn and develop faith and compassion. WHAT THE FLIPPITY FUCK? That makes zero fucking sense! I'm all for learning by example, but this is taking things way too far! I don't know about anyone else, but I don't need to watch someone suffering from stage 4 cancer to understand that they're hurting, scared, and deserving of compassion. I can also have faith that cancer can be treated and hope that a cure is found. So, cancel the fucking lesson, we get it! We don't need to watch pain and suffering in real time to understand it. Bless the sick and dying so that they can be healed or if that's not possible, let them die a quiet, painless death surrounded by family and friends (who again don't need an example to understand that their loved one is hurting, scared, and deserving of human compassion).
In short, whoever's in charge of blessings in the universe needs to seriously rethink things. Maybe there needs to be a blessing merit system. Something like five good deeds equals a blessing that gives a couple the ability and stamina to fuck multiple times in a short amount of time the chance they get to experience the sweaty-sticky-naughty. I don't know, but what I do know is that there are a lot of blessed dick heads and not enough blessed innocents.