Clinker

Most of the time I’m able to let the daily bullshit and banter sift through the cranial grates inside my cue ball noggin but on occasion I get a difficult clinker that won’t pass through.
I have to take it out and look at it and figure out why I can’t mentally digest it.
Case in point: the other night I was surfing the net for the latest in the way of books on Alzheimer’s disease; a simple and innocent task, right?
Imagine my surprise (and horror) to find a book titled “Alzheimer’s for Dummies”.
Needless to say, my searching was over for the night.
I’d found a seriously incongruous clinker that fueled my rage against the literary machine.
I was livid.
This was a subject much too close to home for me and to see it reduced to a ‘manual for dummies’ format personally devastated me.

“Dummies” manuals cover a range of topics: Chess, Poker, MSWord, Windows Vista and Grammar, to name but a few.
But Alzheimer’s disease?
Personally, it was unthinkable.

Why not “Breast Cancer for Dummies”?
How would that go over?
Believe me, I know.
I’ve lost too many friends to the disease and I would be outraged at the total lack of compassion and sensitivity used in publishing such a book.

Never mind.
What the hell is going on here?
I must be losing my mind.

I’ve checked out the contents of the AFD book and I’ve no doubt the author’s intentions were good.
But . . .
So this is what’s it’s come to?
Christ in a sidecar, I’m almost speechless here.
File this one under “roll up that manual and insert forcefully into your keester, sideways“.
But maybe there’s a “Dummies” guide for that as well.
Hey, if ICHC can get a book deal, why the hell not these buttmonkeys?
IMHO, those suffering from this disease deserve an apology from these inconsiderate ‘Dummie’ assholes.
Do I know what I’m talking about here?
Yes, I think I do.
All too well . . .

~m

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For here, or to go?

Alright, a guy comes into the store several months ago and asks,
“Hey, can I try some pipe tobacco?”
I say, “Yeah, help yourself.”

He proceeds to eat, yes, eat small handfuls of 4-5 of our blends.
I shit you not. Yeah, I’m dying and no one knows but me because it’s a Sunday and I’m working alone.
“Which blend has more latakia?” He asks, while munching away.
I show him and he asks for 2oz of said blend.
I ask (and I can’t help myself), “You want that for here or to go?”
God, he looks confused.
“To go,” he says.
I’m still laughing about it . . .

~m

Fade to Black

newspaper shifting, a cough, smoky conversation, HVAC, swallowing, scratching skin, paper, face, construction and squeaky brakes, jet engine overhead, train rumble underneath, a possible shift in the Matrix; I am utterly surrounded . . .

construction, machinery, car horns and moving earth, muzak, PA announcements, metal to metal <at 2K, wind and leaves, sniffles and sneeze, Treo ringtones and Blackberry blasts of email with water running and footsteps walking; I am not even at work yet

child screams on the train, and screams and screams and screams, animal, and I scream (silently), doors open as fast as doors slam shut, a kiss, a grumble, laugh and whisper,
<my mind>bluebird chirp, dog barks and cat purrs, whistling</my mind>, humming,
the envious sound of money, cash register bleeps and the phone rings, time perpetual; I am sonically losing my mind

saxophone, drums, cymbals and melody, bass, piano, guitar and violin all singing the blues, a fucking out of tune shithead soprano doing scales in a room next to a mystical piano tuner, trucks and buses, earsplitting motorcycles because “loud pipes save lives”, noise, pinks and whites but it’s fucking noise, noise, noise . . .

Sometimes I just want it all to STOP
and it does . . .

~m

Norm Abrams, I'm not

I’ve been promising my wife that I’d put together a cabinet for the kitchen.
She bought it several weeks ago and everytime I’d walk through the kitchen I swear I could hear “baaaawk, baaaawk . . . “coming from inside the box.
Its purpose was supposedly going to reduce some of the cabinet clutter and organize the pot and “pandemonium” wreaking havoc in the heart of our home.

How hard could it be to put together a small and innocent antique cabinet?

I’m no Norm Abrams, alright? Building things just isn’t my thing (stop laughing, Laho).

I consider myself a reasonably intelligent man but when an inanimate object begins making a monkey out of me, I have a problem.
I should have known better when I spied the little gold oval sticker proudly proclaiming “made in China” on all 76 pieces.

Assembling this hunk of shit (from the directions given) was worse than trying to comprehend quantum physics.
I seriously think the Chinese are out to get us, all of us.

Said directions were a series of “exploded” pictures; no words or explanations, just pictures . . . all 14 of them. Bastards.

Does the term 3-D puzzle of wood mean anything to you?

The cabinet was mainly black and I almost went frickin’ blind trying to screw this thing together. The phone starts ringing, I spill my coffee, I gotta take a crap and one of the cats starts throwing up a hunk of the Styrofoam packing this thing came in and I’m only Step #1.
I only have 13 more to go.
Please shoot me.
Point the gun at my brain stem and mercifully pull the trigger.
End my pain.

I think about throwing the damn directions away but err on the side of caution and instead start talking dirty to the sad looking unassembled pieces still littering the kitchen table. Things start clicking and I’m beginning to enjoy the dirty talk.

By the time I was finished (2 hours later) I look Chinese, well, my eyes do anyway.

Some people really have a talent for this building shit.
Not me.
I say pay another 20 bucks and let some other choad go Oriental.
I’m an artist, damn it, not Norm Abrams.

~m

Norm Abrams, I’m not

I’ve been promising my wife that I’d put together a cabinet for the kitchen.
She bought it several weeks ago and everytime I’d walk through the kitchen I swear I could hear “baaaawk, baaaawk . . . “coming from inside the box.
Its purpose was supposedly going to reduce some of the cabinet clutter and organize the pot and “pandemonium” wreaking havoc in the heart of our home.

How hard could it be to put together a small and innocent antique cabinet?

I’m no Norm Abrams, alright? Building things just isn’t my thing (stop laughing, Laho).

I consider myself a reasonably intelligent man but when an inanimate object begins making a monkey out of me, I have a problem.
I should have known better when I spied the little gold oval sticker proudly proclaiming “made in China” on all 76 pieces.

Assembling this hunk of shit (from the directions given) was worse than trying to comprehend quantum physics.
I seriously think the Chinese are out to get us, all of us.

Said directions were a series of “exploded” pictures; no words or explanations, just pictures . . . all 14 of them. Bastards.

Does the term 3-D puzzle of wood mean anything to you?

The cabinet was mainly black and I almost went frickin’ blind trying to screw this thing together. The phone starts ringing, I spill my coffee, I gotta take a crap and one of the cats starts throwing up a hunk of the Styrofoam packing this thing came in and I’m only Step #1.
I only have 13 more to go.
Please shoot me.
Point the gun at my brain stem and mercifully pull the trigger.
End my pain.

I think about throwing the damn directions away but err on the side of caution and instead start talking dirty to the sad looking unassembled pieces still littering the kitchen table. Things start clicking and I’m beginning to enjoy the dirty talk.

By the time I was finished (2 hours later) I look Chinese, well, my eyes do anyway.

Some people really have a talent for this building shit.
Not me.
I say pay another 20 bucks and let some other choad go Oriental.
I’m an artist, damn it, not Norm Abrams.

~m

Asshole

A death row inmate in Ohio feels lethal injection is unconstitutional cruel and unusual punishment.
Cry me a river, asshole.
Let me make sure I am crystal fucking clear on this; he raped and stabbed to death a 14 year old girl in cold blood and is complaining about the way he will die.

It’s cruel and unusual punishment?

Really? Come on, you disgusting cretin.

You are so low in the human decency scale that you’d have to climb a ladder to blow a snake, for God’s sake, you assclown.
You have no voice in this, as far as I’m concerned.
Shut the hell up and just die.
It frosts my stones to no end that we actually entertain the thought, all at the risk of political effin’correctness.
Please excuse my really bad French.

My wife served jury duty last week.
The case she was (almost) selected to serve on was fairly clean cut; a defendant was caught red-handed with handguns and drugs and was supposedly associated with a murder.
22 some odd State Troopers were standing nearby to give their testimony against this slimy piece of shit.
Everyone awaiting a jury appointment was asked a series of questions to rule out bias and impartiality.

“Is there anyone here that has already formed an opinion regarding this case?”

My wife {God love her} raises her hand and is called to the judge’s bench.

The conversation went something like this:

“Mrs. Murphy, you’ve already formed an opinion on this case?”

“Yeah. Guilty.”

“Mrs. Murphy? You’re excused.”

There may have been a bit more conversation but that’s all the ammo I needed to write this post.

What am I missing here?
Our judicial system is on way more drugs than Jimi Hendrix was when he was playing Woodstock.
Really, what am I missing here?
As far as Romell Broom goes, screw him.
I say fry his pussy death row ass . . .
And that’s almost too good for the likes of him.
As a taxpayer, I’m so sick and tired of paying for 3 squares a day, a bed with blankets and a roof over the head of slimebags like this guy.
I rant, therefore, I am.
Pissed? Ayup.
Can you tell stories like this bother me a bit?
Please excuse me while I go and vomit.
~m

Nine Eleven

I remember the day vividly; there were crystal blue skies, warm and ample sunshine, comfortable temperatures, a picture perfect fall day in New England.

The date was September 11, 2001 and I was just getting into work (selling pianos at the time) when the phone rang.
It was my friend Colin, a piano technician from the store where I worked calling to tell me he’d heard on the radio that a plane had just flew into the World Trade Center in NYC.
It must have been a terrible accident we both agreed, a freakish malfunction of an old turbine perhaps, a minor incident but nevertheless a tragic loss of life of strangers neither of us would probably ever know.
At the time, it seemed safer thinking of it that way.
It was a small plane, Colin said and that made me feel better.
Fewer people meant fewer casualties in a city the size of New York.

 

After I hung up the phone, it occurred to me that something didn’t seem quite right about the conversation. Couldn’t put my finger on it but something was wrong.
I knew it and Colin knew it, we just didn’t want to say it.

I mean, planes just don’t fly into buildings, do they?

My question was promptly answered when the phone rang 15 minutes later.
It was Colin again sounding a bit nervous.

Another plane? Jesus Christ, what the hell is going on? I asked.

He went on to tell me that both of the towers were hit and that it looked like we were at war.

War? I thought, With who?

I went outside and looked up into the sky for a sign that the world was still alright and all I saw was the endless crystal blue of the atmosphere but I noticed something else; there was an eerie stillness and silence hanging in the balance.

Word got around quickly that the US had been attacked as we began adding words to our daily lexicon: WTC, 9-11, Atta, Al Qaida, Al-Jazeera . . .

The dark truths would begin to bleed through the seemingly impenetrable fabric of our lives virtually changing all of us, forever.

The phones started ringing at the store . . . but not from customers.
The calls were from wives to husbands, sons to mothers, sisters to brothers – with one simple question; are you okay?
By noontime the phones stopped ringing and business ceased as the United States was brought to its very knees.

I can’t help but think of the same three words I thought on that horrible day: God Help Us

 

I still pray for all that we lost that day; the brilliant lives, our {unjustifiable} innocence and our shattered sense of {false} security.
We were too blind for far too long.

My words describing that day are still woefully inadequate but my thoughts and feelings of incomprehensibility are still so incredibly tender and raw.

I want badly to forgive but I still can’t.

God Bless all those we lost.

As Annie said, turn those headlights on . . .

~m