Bag of Tricks

Growing up in L.A. during the 60s taught me the value of illusion and how insular my world was. Almost everything I believed and trusted has been slowly purged from my consciousness in the decades since. The late 60s were amazing from my perspective. The music alone was enough to occupy me and in 1968-69 I had a teacher who unscrewed the top of my head and opened my mind to an invisible world beyond the concrete barriers of sense. I loved this teacher and had no clue that I did at that time because I was her foil. I hated her at times. She "picked on" me. I spent more time in detention with her than all of the other seven grade school years combined. She found faults in me that amaze me to this day. I would argue with her about silly little things on a constant basis for no other reason than to be her opposite. I would show her. In retrospect, I have never been so wrong about a person in my whole life.

Two things happened that year in Miss Brunner's 6th grade English class. The first was alluded to earlier and, with the exception of the many elective and extra curricular activities of high school which I loved, those were the most enjoyable days I have ever had in a classroom as a student. It was towards the end of the school year when she introduced a unit on figurative language and my mind forgot that I resented this tiny little red haired teacher and I discovered a spectrum of colors in the written word. I hung on her every utterance. Then, the unit ended and we went back to tenses or pronouns or some other equally "exciting" lesson and I resumed my role as Loki to her Thor.

Which brings me to the second event. I don't know to this day if she planned it or not but she trapped me with my own bravado. I don't even recall the nature of the argument but at one point she issued a challenge to me she knew I could not decline no matter how abhorrent. Pride, peer pressure, face, and , yes, honor were at stake. All the cards were on the table. She offered me the "chance" to prove how "easy" her job was by assigning me a day to teach in place of her. Her prey fell into the trap with ease and I spent the next few days preparing for my day in the sun. I have completely blacked out all memory of the lesson I taught except to note that it was the happiest I had ever seen her. Sitting in my desk and smiling while I suffered through the agony of my fall and the loss of my soul. She stopped me about half way through and gave the class free time. As I was erasing the chalk board she came up to me and told me that I did a good job and she gave me one of her bookmarks with a gold star on it.

I wish I could see her now and tell her "Thank You." Instead I will gaze at the stars and remember her for what she is still teaching me.


Take the Pledge

I pledge allegiance to the bar code of the United States of Amway, and to the oligarchy for which we serve, one world under the jack boot of the multinationals, with hate and fear for all.

Corporations win when they lose... always.

Riding til the Bell

Well, I just missed another birthday; mine. Seems I turned 50 a few days back and no one noticed. Oh, wait, yes the company that insures my car sent me a card; I've never met my agent but the two girls she has working for her are very nice. Anyway, this birthday brought no new revelations or earth shattering epiphanies so I guess I can catalog it with all of the previous ones and move on. However, a milestone like this deserves a pat on the back at a minimum because I truly did not think I would ever make it half as far. In this spirit I am going to spend the next half century doing exactly the same things that got me through the last half century. If you were expecting me to make a list of my sins here you are sadly mistaken. I am, as I was, still... a private person with passions that run the gamut from enriching to perverse and that is all that I will say.
Oh, a timer bell has rung somewhere in this box I call home. It is either the dryer, the stove, the front door or my "beer in the freezer" bell so I have to run. (I hope it's the one for my frosty libation as I am a bit parched from all of this scribbling I make myself do.)


"Boom Boom"

I will vote if Obama is on either Edward's ticket or if Gore runs. Otherwise, I will do as I have done in every presidential election except one; vote for the socialist/communist/anarchist/satanist/wiccan/dirty fucking hippy/none of the above.
The one time since 1976 when I voted for a dem was 1988 because I had a deep concern about electing St. Ronnie's hatchetman (see October Surprise.) What was Dukakis thinking when he rode around in the commander's cupola of that tank. Oh well, past history... It still makes me laugh to this day.
If "Dick" Cheney gets away with his 4th branch thingy, we'll have Obama as our imperial vice president. The thought of this makes me giggle like a schoolgirl. Hey, it's just a saying. You questioning my macho manliness? If so, then we will meet at daybreak at the base of the monument dedicated to Hamilton / 10.

Encyclopedias at ten paces.



Drip... Mountains crumble and wash to the sea and we shrug our shoulders, bow our heads and follow along the path for no other reason than that is where everyone else is going. Drip... There is only one absolute Truth; change occurs indifferently. Drip...The arrogance of homo sapiens lies in believing that we our masters of our environment and the future can be manipulated. Drip...

Drip... I despise exceptionalism. Drip... The roots of moral decay are nourished with the blood spilled in it's fervor. Drip... We are trapped in that tragical moment when we learned and understood our DOOM. Drip...

Drip... Some questions have no answers. Drip... Some answers are so repellent that we inherently purge them from our collective souls. Drip... Race memory is biological not sociological. Drip...