Posts Tagged ‘short story’

The Bully Problem

December 15, 2017

Otto played pick-up, drop-in, shinny hockey every afternoon with a group of guys that were third shifters, unemployed, underemployed or lucky enough to have a woman who didn’t care if they worked.  Otto kept looking at the clock on the wall during his 15-minute marathon shift and decided that unless he wanted to smell like ass, he needed to get off the ice and shower before retrieving his children from school.  Otto pulled up and his two children were about the only two students left.  All others had been picked up.  Otto’s cute little first grade daughter raced to the minivan first and whispered a breathy secret to her dad.

            “A big boy in the eighth grade knocked Clint down and shoved his face in the snow…  He was crying really bad.  If you had come on time, you would have saw him.”

            “Okay…  Don’t repeat that to your mom about me being a few minutes late.”

            Otto knew that if his wife got wind of the fact that the kids were waiting in front of the school and everyone was already gone, she would be really pissed that ice hockey, pick-up ice hockey was the reason for tardiness.  Otto’s little daughter Adelaide was as cute as a button but a horrible ratfink.  All Otto could do was hope that Adelaide would forget.  Sometimes little kids forget things.  Otto looked at his fourth grade son who did not like fighting and wondered if next year when body checking begins, if his son Clint would quit the sport.  The thought scared Otto.  What would he do come September?  Take his son to-everyone-gets-a-trophy-soccer-and-we-don’t-keep-score out in a field?  Maybe basketball or football both of which he knew nothing about.  Otto decided it was time to step up and prevent his son from becoming a pussy.  If something happens on the ice and a referee fails to catch it, a fight occurs.  It is the unwritten law of ice hockey and this offense was the unwritten law of life.  Otto drove up and down the streets until little Adelaide yelled into Otto’s ear from the back seat and pointed… “That’s the boy there!”

            Otto exited the minivan with gritted teeth.  The eighth grader was Otto’s height but as formidable as Bambi.  Otto got close enough for the thirteen year old boy to taste his breath.  Spittle hit the boy’s face as Otto yelled at him like a drill sergeant.

            “Did you fucking push my kid face down in the snow?”

            “Yes…”

            “I’m gonna tell you what…  You better fucking stand there and not move…  Like a fucking statue.  If you do move, I will beat your ass…  Do you understand me?”

            The boy nodded.  Otto yelled for Clint to exit the minivan, make a tight ice ball and smash it in the face of the aggressor.  Clint got a running start and jumped a bit to ensure he reached the 8th graders face.  With ice dripping down the boys face, Otto gave his parting warning.

            “If you ever touch my kid again, I will come over to your house and beat the shit out of you and then beat the shit out of your pussy dad and you, you little pussy…  Do you fucking get me?  Don’t fucking forget because I won’t.”

            Later that evening, Otto met his wife with the children for dinner.  Remarkably his blabbermouth daughter only spoke about her day at school.  There was no mention of Otto being late to pick them up, an eighth grade boy pushing Clint face down in the snow or the sentence imposed by Otto.  As they entered the house after dinner, the game plan was to get the kids to bed early, pour the wine, start the music and be ready for love.  Otto put away some groceries his wife had purchased after work and had not noticed the flashing button on their antiquated answering machine that was connected to the landline that nobody used except to order pizza.

“MESSAGE ONE  TUESDAY 4:14 PM…  Mrs. Calhoun…  This is principal Smith from Our Lady of Perpetual Suffering…  I need to talk to you about an incident between your husband and an eighth grade boy at the school.  It is a serious matter and I ask that your husband not be anywhere near the school property until we’ve had a chance to speak with you and the family of the boy.  Please call me at your convenience.”

            Mary looked at her husband who put away peanut butter and bread and did almost anything not to turn around and look at his wife.  She asked what happened and little Adelaide gave her account of the whole event.

            “Okay…  So after school, this big boy knocked down Clint and rubbed his face in the snow until Clint cried and then the boy left…  And then all the people left and we were the last to be picked up.  Cars drove by slow but we didn’t talk to any strangers or get in their cars.  Like a half hour later or maybe just ten minutes, daddy came and then we went looking for the boy and then we found him and then daddy told Clint to push snow in his face and then daddy told the boy that he would beat his ass and his dad’s ass and called him a pussy for beating up a little boy…  And that’s what happened…  Daddy?  What’s a pussy?”

            Mary pushed her young daughter towards the bathroom to start her bath and responded to the question in a way that she couldn’t understand but that her husband could hear.

            “A pussy is something your dad will not be able to have tonight because he was a naughty boy and naughty boys do not get treats.”

            “Will daddy have to go to his room and go to bed?”

            “No…  Mommy will be doing that instead.  Make sure you wash everything well.”

            And eventually, they lived happily as a family could live given these angry times… The end.

Advertisements

Domesticis Angustia

October 17, 2017

WHY DID YOU PUT THE FUCKING DOG IN THE BASEMENT WHEN I ASKED YOU NOT
TO?  I WOKE UP TO A HOWLING PUPPY COMING THROUGH THE VENTS FROM THE
BASEMENT. AND WHY DID YOU CALL THE GIRLS AT 6;30 THIS MORNING WHEN YOU
KNOW THEY WERE OFF OF SCHOOL  THEY GET TO SLEEP IN AND YOU WAKE ALL OF
US UP WITH AN EARLY MORNING PHONE CALL.  INCREDIBLE

I THOUGHT PUTTING THE DOG IN THE BASEMENT MIGHT ALLOW YOU TO ALL GET
MORE SLEEP.  I POCKET DIALED THE GIRLS.  I’M REALLY SORRY AROUT THAT.
I FORGOT TO LOCK THE PHONE BACK UP AND IT CALLED THEM.

I DON’T UNDERSTAND YOU.  REALLY I DON’T.

I KNOW YOU DON’T AND I DON’T UNDERSTAND YOU EITHER.  WHY DO WE HAVE A
DOG? A PUPPY? AND UNTRAINED PUPPY?  YOUR EX-HUSBAND CAN’T FIGURE OUT
WHAT TO DO WITH HIS OWN KIDS WHEN HE’S WITH THEM SO HE TAKES THEM TO
IKEA TO LOOK AT SHIT THEY WON’T BUY AND TO ANIMAL RESCUES TO PET DOGS
HE WON’T HAVE.  YOU WORKED OUT BUYING A DOG WITH YOUR EX-HUSBAND BUT
HE’S NOT WALKING THEM OR CLEANING UP THE SHIT AND PISS.  I GUESS I
DON’T UNDERTAND THAT.

I DON’T UNDERSTAND WHY YOU MADE MY SON SKATE A 60 SECOND DRILL IN
FRONT OF THE WHOLE TEAM AND SINGLED HIM OUT WHEN OTHER KIDS WERE
FUCKING OFF.

OTHER KIDS GOT YELLED AT.  YOUR SON WAS SMILING WHILE I WAS YELLING
ABOUT HORSING AROUND DURING A CONTROLLED SCRIMMAGE.  THAT PROMPTED THE
60 SECOND DRILL.  I SHOULD HAVE JUST THROWN HIM OFF THE ICE.  I KNEW
THAT YOU WOULD COME TO HIS RESCUE WHEN HE’S WRONG.

IS THIS THE REASON WHY YOU SEPARATED HIM FROM ALL HIS FRIENDS DURING
THE SCRIMMAGE AND PUT HIM WITH KIDS WHO CAN’T KEEP UP?

A SCRIMMAGE IS A PRACTICE GAME.  A MAKE BELIEVE GAME.  WE DIDN’T KEEP
SCORE.  NOBODY CHEERED WHEN THEY SCORED.  IT WAS ALL FOR THE GREATER
GOOD OF GETTING BETTER FOR THE DAYS WHEN REFS SHOW UP AND WE DO KEEP
SCORE ON THE SCORE BOARD.  ANY OTHER COMPLAINTS ABOUT ME?  HIS DAD WAS
OUT HAVING A COLD ONE WITH FRIENDS WHILE I COACH HIS CHILD JUST SO HE
CAN SHOW UP FOR THE REAL GAMES AND PROUDLY PROCLAIM- THAT’S MY BOY.  I
GET THE GRIEF, HE GETS THE GRAVY.  HE FINDS THE DOG, WE TAKE CARE OF
IT.  I’M ON THE WRONG END OF THIS I SUPPOSE.

YOU KNOW WHAT’S WRONG?  I SPENT MONEY FOR YOUR DAUGHTER TO EAT A
CHEESEBURGER AT MY FATHER’S BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION AND SHE CHANGED HER
ORDER TO MAC AND CHEESE WHICH SHE DIDN’T EVEN FINISH.

UM…  SHE HAD IT FOR DINNER LAST NIGHT AND SHARED IT WITH YOUR KIDS WHO
HAD NOT EATEN YET WHEN WE CAME BACK FROM HOCKEY PRACTICE.  YOUR FRIEND
ARRIVES WITH A BOTTLE OF PROSECCO TO SIT OUT BACK WITH YOU.  MEANWHILE
BACK AT THE RANCH, I’M MAKING SLIDERS AND FRENCH FRIES FOR ALL THE
KIDS, THE HOUSE LOOKS LIKE HELL BECAUSE OF THE BROKEN GARBAGE DISPOSAL
AND A PUPPY.  I REALLY WISH YOU EX COULD BE THE ONE TO CATCH ALL THIS
BULLSHIT.  HE GETS YOU TO BUY THE KIDS A DOG.  YOU PAY FOR IT, YOU
TAKE CARE OF IT AND HE GETS A FULL NIGHT REST.  GREAT FUCKING DEAL.

I ASKED YOU TO LEAVE THE CONE ON THE DOG’S NECK BUT YOU DON’T.  THE
STITCHES WHERE HIS BALLS USED TO BE COULD EASILY COME OUT AND IF THEY
DO, YOU WILL TAKE HIM TO THE VET.  DOG IN THE CAGE, IN THE BASEMENT
WITH NO CONE.  EVERYTHING WRONG WITH THAT.

THE FUCKING DOG IS TRYING TO SLEEP WITH ME ON THE COUCH WITH A PLASTIC
CONE AROUND IT’S HEAD.  NOT POSSIBLE TO DO.

YOUR FRIEND THE PAINTER JUST SHOWED UP LATE TO PAINT AGAIN AND IS
TALKING ABOUT THE SIZE OF HIS SON-IN-LAW’S COCK. WTF?! RIGHT IN FRONT
OF THE GIRLS.  WHERE DO YOU FIND FRIENDS LIKE THIS?

I COULD ASK WHY THAT WOULD EVEN COME UP BUT NEVERMIND. I NEVER ASKED
YOU TO HIRE HIM.  WE COACHED AND PLAYED HOCKEY TOGETHER BUT I NEVER
HIRE HIM FOR ANYTHING.  HE IS A SLOB.

YOU’RE OUT PLAYING HOCKEY AND I’M BABYSITTING YOUR TALKATIVE PAINTER
FRIEND.  HOPE YOU’RE HAVING FUN.

I’M SITTING NAKED IN THE FUCKING LOCKER ROOM TEXTING YOU INSTEAD OF
WARMING UP.  GUYS ASKED ME IF I’M WRITING A BOOK.  I TOLD THEM NO
BECAUSE I CAN’T GET ONE PUBLISHED.  THEY LAUGHED.  I’M NOT LAUGHING.
THANKS FOR A GREAT SEND OFF.

FUCK YOU FOR MAKING THE DOG HOWL, WAKING UP THE GIRLS WITH YOUR
BLACKBERRY PHONE THAT NOBODY USES ANYMORE, FOR NOT GETTING GLASSES AND
NOT SEEING DOG SHIT IN THE CARPET FROM THE PUPPY THAT WAS UNCRATED
BEFORE YOU LOCKED HIM IN THE BASEMENT, NO CONE, LICKING HIS MISSING
BALLS.  FUCK YOU FOR SINGLING OUT MY CHILD AT HOCKEY LAST NIGHT AND
MAKING SURE HE WAS ON A SHITTY SIDE THAT COULD NOT SCORE…  DID I LEAVE
ANYTHING OUT?

NOPE.  THAT’S GREAT.  GOING ON THE ICE NOW SO I DON’T STROKE OUT AND
DIE FROM FRUSTRATION AND ANGER.

The Stay at Home Dad’s Poetry Meet-Up

October 7, 2017
Jack met Martin before they finally said a few words to Buck.  All
three of them had small children that they would take to the park at
about the same time.  There were Spanish and Polish speaking au pairs
and a few young moms but the three men found one another and became
friends.
Jack, a stand-up bass player in Jazz bands at night, watched his two
boys during the day.  His wife is an attorney and she essentially pays
for everything.  Jack needs to pay his car insurance and for his own
food when he eats out.  Jack lives in a big house and loves watching
documentaries on Netflix.  He’s a good dad but has trouble being
patient with his son, Jack Jr. who has ADD.
Martin writes short stories and poetry and makes almost no money
except that he takes care of pre-school age children on Mondays from
9-3.  His daughter gets to be part of the school for free and they
give Martin $200.00 a day for his work.  That money needs to stretch
all week.  His wife is a schoolteacher truly believes her husband will
get one of his manuscripts published one day.  She asks Martin to see
the queries he sends out daily to ensure that he is not playing video
games all day while their toddler twins play close by.
Buck is a high school hockey coach by night and a stay at home dad by
day.  Buck also plays hockey and is a referee to earn a few extra
dollars.  Buck makes $10,000.00 between September and March and then
he gets a few hundred for running clinics and camps in the summer
months.
When times were tough at home for the boys and their spouses, the
fact that their wives were carrying them more or less, did not go
without mention.  Martin’s wife was probably the harshest with him in
that he would go long periods of time without writing anything.  His
response would be that when there is acrimony between them, he
couldn’t get in the mindset to write anything.  Her response would be,
“Then go get a fucking job like every other man on the planet and quit
fucking moping…”
Jack’s wife hated Jazz but was turned on by him playing the stand-up
bass.  She wanted her husband to give music lessons on the side to
children to help make more money but he said that he really hated
children other than his own.  Truth be told, Jack wasn’t entirely sure
that he liked his boys all that much.  They were loud and messy and
truly whining little bitches in his opinion.  He felt that their mom
coddled them way too much.
Buck’s wife liked that her husband was rough and straightforward.  If
you were ugly, Buck might tell you so.  He was hard on his hockey
players and trained them to be as rough as possible.  Buck often wore
a shirt that he had made up himself that read, “MAKE HOCKEY VIOLENT
AGAIN”.  Buck still played ice hockey and still fought as a man in his
later forties.  His large dick could get hard on command and for that
reason, his wife found redeeming value in her caveman.
Martin spoke to an owner of a small restaurant about having a poetry
reading night once a week on a Tuesday night.  Most of the poetry
sucked but the authors believed it to be good.  Some would read short
stories or essays but most were poems.  Martin began a Meet-Up poetry
night at the same small club where Jack played Jazz at a drop-in Jazz
night on Wednesdays.  The owner, desperate for extra business, allowed
the bad poetry night and circle jerking Jazz musicians to play the
same tired old shit like hymns at a protestant church.  Jack played
the bass softly while people read.  There was a local finalist who
read his award-winning poem first.  His poem earned him a place in an
anthology of poems and a $500.00 award.  His name was Bruce and he
smelled of onions and had greasy wispy hair.  His collared shirt was
stained around the armpits and his ass crack hung out of the back of
his pants when he sat down.  He looked nearly homeless but was
actually a rich trust funder who never had to work a day in his life.
Nobody understood his poem but they all agreed it was good.  A young
black man came up and read his next.  He dug the bass behind him.  He
had a large Afro and was slightly angry just because it was en vogue.
He came from adopted white lesbians in a well to do area of town.  The
young, thin man grabbed the microphone and paced back and forth like a
distressed lion in a cage.
“What you need to know is a knee makes me free.  A knee tells the
world about my plight and all the things in society that just ain’t
right.  What you need to know is that my life matters and as a matter
of fact, you can’t know what it’s like to be in my skin or understand
where I’ve been.  A knee makes it right and I have the right to right
a wrong…  Play that bass, motha fuckah!”
A man named Jose came up and asked Jack to play the bass line for the
girl from Ipanema while he strummed a guitar and sang in Portuguese.
Nobody knew what he was saying but it really sounded nice.  The
English translation was not as nice.
“I loved to love you and loved you with all my muscle.  When you
fucked me in the ass, I  fucked you in the ass for real.  How dare you
take my shit and give me diseases.  Even though you did many wrong
things, I would take you back but lock my things up.  I love you…  I
love you…”
Next was the sushi woman.  The sushi woman catered parties dressed
like Betty Page from the 1950’s with no shirt on and a multitude of
tattoos.  Guys hired her for bachelor parties and football games.  Her
name is Gretchen; she’s 27, teaches Pilates and has a side gig as a
topless sushi maker.  Her poetic rant against Trump was with her shirt
off.  Over her nipples were two X’s of black tape.  She wore tight
black exercise pants and high heels her hair was poofed up high and
her black lipstick was thick.  Thick enough to need a scrubber to get
the paraffin off of her wine glass at the end of the night.  The men
didn’t give a damn about the message.  They marveled at her tight body
and round breasts.  People off the street stopped as they walked by to
look at the young woman on a stage, under lights.
“You’re not my president.  I’m no longer a resident of this country…
You shattered my hopes; you’ve shattered my dreams.  You taken the
best part of me and pulled it from my breast…” Gretchen cupped her
left breast from underneath.  Her natural breasts were round and firm.
Everyone clapped for her as if it was the best thing they ever heard.
She then passed out cards for her sushi catering with a picture of
herself without a shirt on, arms crossed, holding two knives.
Last to come up was Buck.  He had never done something like writing
poetry and reciting it.  He was strong looking and stood with his left
hand in his pocket.  He wore a CCM hat and an Expos T shirt.  Buck
looked out of his element.
“I was a lad near Montreal.  J’ai parle Francais chez moi…  My dad
listened to Hockey Night in Canada sur la radio…  Patriotic?  you
better believe, I wear it on my sleeve.  Red, White and Blue, les
trois colouer of the Canadiens of Montreal.  I might buy you a beer
and talk about the power play, I might beat your ass on the ice the
following day.  Don’t take offense, its just hockey.  Hockey might be
better than sex.  The sound of the crowd and the puck inside the net.
The wind blowing around my ears and the snot flying around your helmet
and the tears as I cartwheel your ass with a solid hip check.  A slap
shot, wrist shot, a child in the stands cheering a lot.  Wearing the
sweater to your favorite team, playing outside on a winter day, sweat
steaming from under your hat.  This is life; this is where it’s at.  I
hope to play this game til I die.  Don’t understand?…  Enough of this
bullshit and listen to the man play the bass.  Coffee tomorrow at the
park, boys?  Solid Jackson play it out…  In case you didn’t know,
Kerouac was Quebecois too… I rest my case.”

Trying to Remember…

May 12, 2017
I brought a photo album that my grandmother put together over to where
she now lives which is a waiting room for death.  Assisted living is
what they call it.  It was nursing and convalescent when I was a boy.
You walk in and a room full of old people look up to see if you are
the person that they have been waiting and hoping to see.  I’m not the
guy they been waiting to see.
So my grandmother has essentially been my mother my whole life and my
mom was kind of like a mom and not like a mom at the same time.
Anyone 16 years old, should never have a child and so I don’t totally
blame her for lapses.  I go to see my grandmother when I can.  Within
the last three years, her husband died, her dogs were put to sleep and
her house was sold.  Dementia has been taking hold of her and it get’s
stronger all the time.
“Did you see my mother wandering the hallway?  She’s got two guys
that she runs around with and if they ever catch her with the other,
there’s gonna be a fight.”
“No, grandma…  I didn’t see her…  I brought this nice photo album of
your garden and your dogs.”
She looked at it as if she had never seen it before.  She thought the
dogs looked cute.  A Bassett Hound and a Dachshund, both became
adopted pets which I initially purchased for my adult daughter when
she was a girl.  It got me to thinking, how will I chronicle my life?
Nobody takes pictures anymore and presents a slideshow on Christmas or
Easter.  You take pictures on your phone and upload it to social media
and when your phone falls in the shitter, those pics are gone forever.
The only thing I hate more than taking pictures, is being in pictures.
So putting together photo albums like my grandmother did going back to
her youth, World War II, the birth of my dad and uncle, my life and
then my children’s youth, won’t be possible.  I guess I’ll need to
write shit down and let one of my kids read this stuff back to me and
ask if this stuff really happened.  I’ve had an interesting life but
then again, a lot of people have also.  They can write their own
fucking blog.  This one is mine.
To look at me, you might not guess right off that I play ice hockey .
After a few minutes, you might notice scars on my face and a cracked
front tooth and wonder how I got so beat up around the face.  Some
people ask.  Most never do.  You might never guess that I have an
upright bass and play Ska/Reggae music, sing and write the music I
play.  I am fluent in French and have surprised a few people when the
French language is spoken and I join in.  I really don’t like French
culture, French people and I’ve never really wanted to go to France.
I’ve used it on visits to Martinique and Quebec.  I have three
children.  Two by a woman of African descent by way of Cuba and one by
the other by way of Jamaica.  I know you’re thinking… Ah yes.  Black
women, Reggae…  Of course.  The woman I’m with now is white and blonde
and I’m not liberal in my political views.  With that said, let’s talk
about hockey.
B texted me and told me that for sure there were going to be two
goalies at the rink near downtown.  He’s a cop on the night shift and
I own a restaurant/bar so we play pick-up hockey during the day time.
We usually play at a rink near the airport but I decided to meet him
out at the rink just west of downtown.  The Zamboni guy whose name I
never learned, recognized me and asked me where I’ve been.  I used to
play at the rink two to three times a week.  I found skates that were
more to my liking and so I stopped going to the downtown rink.
“Everyone is at J’s skate…  You know that.  Nobody comes here on
Wednesdays.  Just then M walked in.  M, is a bus driver and is black
and a goalie.  He is a virtual Rain Man with statistics of all hockey,
NHL and minor league.  He has a voice like the Chef from South Park.
He could sing, Old Man River, with his deep baritone voice.  Next
walked in B and his friend K.  K just finished playing midgets about a
year ago.  K has good hands and a quick shot.  I talked to him about
playing juniors in the past while sitting on the bench, waiting for
our shift.  K says that he just wants to get on with life and that he
doesn’t think that juniors will lead him anywhere.  One more guy
showed up and so I decided to stay.  Two on two half ice with a
goalie.  A good work out with a lot of passing and turning.  My game
is one of passing.  I believe that there can never be enough passing.
Good things come from passing.  There is a time when one should pass
and when one has to pass.  Those that know the difference are good and
smart hockey players.  K and I played against B and young guy wearing
a practice jersey from a USHL team.  He was young, average height, had
a good shot, good speed and good hands.  He was probably no better
than K.  I covered B and K covered the USHL kid.  I passed and dropped
down to create a cycle in the corner.  If you’re not familiar with a
cycle, picture that you have the puck and you’re skating towards the
goalie.  Rather than shoot the puck at the goalie, you make a right or
left turn and skate up the boards towards the blue line.  You then
look over your shoulder and drop the puck behind you along the boards
to your team mate that is coming up the boards behind you.  You make
that pass and then circle back so that you’re now following the guy
who was just following you.  He can drop it again or cut to the net
and get a pass on his way to the net.  I did this over and over and
scored a bunch of times.  I wondered how a kid from the USHL and B who
has played over twenty years since he was a kindergartener, could not
pick up on what I was doing.  We wore ourselves out doing this for
about an hour.  I looked up in the stands and little four and five
year olds were watching us.  I looked up to a small boy sitting next
to his mother and asked him if he was faster than me.  The mother
smiled and the boy nodded.
The weather was just warm enough to lay my equipment out in the
backyard.  Nothing is better to kill the stink and sweat of wet hockey
equipment better than the sun.  It’s not a fact, just my opinion.  I
walked over to a little Mexican restaurant with the newspaper and had
huevos rancheros…  The newspaper opinion section was down on Trump for
firing the head of the FBI.  The whole Democratic Party is calling for
a special prosecutor to look into Trump’s involvement with the
Russians and the Russian’s involvement with our election.  Interesting
to note that the same politicians who were astounded by James Comey’s
firing, were all calling for his head back when he was investigating
Hillary Clinton’s missing emails, use of a private server with
government business.  Today, Trump is painted to be just like Nixon.
Nixon wanted the special prosecutor fired and had to fire someone who
refused to do the firing on his behalf.  Nixon found a man named Bork
who fired the special prosecutor.  Bork was shot down as a supreme
court justice nominee due mostly to being the hatchet man for Nixon.
So Trump fired a man the Democrats felt  had done too much and that
the Republicans felt had not done enough.  Sometimes when you’re a
nice guy, it backfires and everyone hates your and finds you inept.
Better to be respected than loved.
I finished lunch, went back to the restaurant and got ready for the
night.  Washed left over dishes from the night before, bar and dinner
dishes.  Washed the floor, set tables and then went upstairs to my
apartment and practiced the bass in preparation for a gig Friday night
at my own place.  I had a rather quiet Groupon night.  Two young Asian
girls as cute as could be.  They’ll need to be carded for the next
thirty years since they look like junior high girls now.  They had a
charcuterie plate and a few empanadas and giggled a lot through their
chatter.  Another couple sat at the bar and agonized over which wine
to buy.
“What can you tell me about this wine?”
I make up plausible bullshit.  Truth is that 95% of the people who
come in cannot tell the difference in any of the wines.  They sniff,
they swirl and it’s all something they learned in Napa.  The husband
was chubby and kind of pushy.
“What do you have that’s a special?”
I’m always ready for that question.
“Everything on the menu is really special to me…”
I know what he meant.  Looking for something for next to nothing with
his Groupon.  His hips were wider than his shoulders and he was sort
of a whiny bitch.  His wife talked to him about the fact that he stole
her pillow a few times during the night.  I’m behind the bar and feel
compelled to ask at least one question.  His wife answers while he
studied his phone.  She seemed nice and genuine and out of his league.
That happens a lot.
The last table was a chubby woman across from a MILF.  The MILF
looked like she just got done with a yoga class.  The chubby woman
looked frumpy and looked at her friend while ordering instead of
making eye contact with me.  They ate a little, drank a little, paid
their bill and then sat for an extra hour.  I often wonder what  women
can talk about one on one for over two hours.  I was just happy as
hell that it wasn’t a Thursday because Thursday night I go to play
hockey after closing up and two women loitering for an extra hour is a
definite hockey cock block.
They left and I turned off all the lights to the bar and put on the
Anaheim/Edmonton game and ate and had some wine.  When one of the
Anaheim skaters skated in front of his net, in front of his goalie and
the Edmonton forechecker shuffleboarded the shot past the Anaheim
goalie who was just standing their like a scare crow, I thought
Edmonton was on it’s way.  On paper, they have almost what Edmonton
had beck in the eighties with Gretsky, Messier, Coffey and Grant Fuhr.
The Ducks woke up and crushed Edmonton in the second period and
stymied them in the third…  Dommage.  I’m hoping for Ottawa but feel
like Pittsburg is going to repeat.
Slapshot line of the day- Maurice, you make sick when you talk like that..

The Emperor’s New Clothes or F#ck the Cubs

October 28, 2016

Gil and Gail packed up their deviled eggs and New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc that they bought while in New Zealand and headed over to their friends Tom and Tam. It was a beautiful fall night more like summer than fall with a full moon. The event was a baseball game between the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Chicago Cubs. Tom, a huge Cubs fan, set up a television outside in front of a fire pit and a trampoline off in the distance.
Gil was born and raised in Los Angeles and was a life long Dodgers fan stranded in the midwest. He walked past a teacher’s union lawn sign and three different lawn signs for Hillary Clinton and a giant blue W painted on a plain white background to signify a win for the Chicago Cubs on the way to Tom and Gail’s backyard. Gail and Tam really liked one another. They met at a Pilates class and became great friends. They watched the Kardashians together at different homes and texted about it at night. Their sons played youth hockey together and Gil was the hockey coach. Gil was quiet owner of an ice hockey pro shop who played hockey, sold hockey and played hockey four to five days a week. Gil and Tammy’s son was thin and good-looking, fast and capable at being a scoring threat at every game. Tom and Tam’s son had man boobs and hips wider than his shoulders. The bookish son of Tom and Tam was slow and had a weak shot. Gil took their son as a favor to his wife who really wanted a friend up in the stands to sit with at games. Tom was jealous that Gil was in good shape and was a good skater and coach. Tom couldn’t skate but was wealthy and had season tickets to all Cubs and Chicago Blackhawks games. Tom was a partner at a law firm and drove a Range Rover and a Corvette with personalized Cubs and Blackhawks Illinois license plates. One license said PWR PLAY 69 and the other said LUV CUB 69. Gil had no hair, was built and had a half missing tooth much like the hockey great Alex Ovechkin and a face full of scars from years of playing ice hockey without facial protection. Gil refused to wear a cage or a half shield while playing and looked like a rough neck. Tom wore black horned rimmed glasses and had looked like an LL Bean model in front of his $5000.00 built in backyard grill, 50 inch television exclusively for the backyard and excellent sound system. A band from the 1980’s called Haircut 100 blared through the speakers while the ball teams silently  took batting practice. Gil stood with a bowl of deviled eggs in a LA Dodgers hat and shirt. Tom wore a Cubs hat with a T-shirt that had a large W on it. He was cooking filet mignon, he offered Gil a beer. Gil declined as he was gluten-free. It irritated Gil when Tom would offer him a beer. Even though Gil had declined dozens of times, Tom would still offer a beer to Gil. Gil had Ceiliaks disease which prevented him from processing gluten properly.
“Tam remembered and purchased a gluten-free, lesbian safe beer for you from Trader Joe’s… You can be like every other man around this town watching this game tonight and start the night properly with a beer.”
Gil opened the beer, tapped it against the bottle Tom was holding and talked about their son’s hockey team. Gil was careful not to say too much and let Tom comment on the high and low points of the season.
“The goalie is brutal… It is truly a testament to your defense that we’ve been in every game. Do you put your best skaters on defense always?”
Gil took a drink of his beer and pondered the best answer to a question he didn’t care to answer truthfully. Gil felt that it was a good idea to be as cryptic as possible with parents when it came to playing time, position and lines. Gil played Tom and Tam’s son on the first line even though he was a slow, tentative, ineffective player. It was a political move to appease his wife who was considering her friend’s feelings.
“I try to find a balance…”
“That is a beautifully scripted answer, coach. People try to figure out where you’re coming from. They want to know if there is something deeper to your tactics. I think mystery comes off as deep but I think I have you figured out, coach…”
“Tommy… This is a night all about baseball. I’m ready to take the night off of hockey. A full moon, great fucking weather, good food, booze and the Dodgers poised to make a California boy proud…”
Beer turned to scotch and then to wine. Bottles and bottles. Blue cheese on choice steaks with gluten-free pasta. It was a night to remember. A clear, full moon and August like weather in October. The game turned ugly for Gil. The Dodgers tanked and were getting crushed by the Cubs. It was a debacle not unlike when Gil was young and the Dodgers would lose every year to the Yankees. It might have been a moment of hurt pride that caused Gil to change from a good-natured fan to a critical observer of the type of man he disdained- bragging, rich, unathletic, pudgy Chicago fan. The Dodgers were losing by a touch down when Tom lit a cigar and laughed at the score between innings. Gil told Gail that he wanted to leave. she was having a great time without having to watch her children and she did not want to cut the night short and return home yet. The game ended with a huge Cubs win. Tam put on a song that harkened back to Burt Bacharach buy a band called Cousteau. No relation to Jacques called, The Last Good Day of the Year.
There’s something there
Among the fallen fruit and flowers, won’t rest
Only minutes, only hours unless
Now the morning breaks in showers, I guess
We’ll remember this all of our lives
On the last good day of the year
Gil sat and looked at the full moon as a gentle breeze blew through the leaves in the trees that were ready to turn colors and fall. Tom was going on and on about the Cubs and then switched to politics. After a beer, a scotch and many glasses of wine, Gil was ready to speak freely, uninhibited or reserved. Tom was taken by surprise.
“Fuck you. Fuck the Cubs, fuck unions, fuck Hillary and fat kids who really don’t want to play ice hockey… Enjoy your win you fucking pompous asshole. I hope Hillary gets the same fucking treatment Nixon got for the minor shit he did compared to that cunt.”
Gil knew that his wife hated the word cunt and that most women had a thing against the word. Both Tam and Gail gasped and tried to get Gil to calm down. It only made him angrier.
“You want to let all the Mexicans in? All the Syrians? Every fucking moderate who makes their wife cover their whole fucking face like a goddamn Ninja? Fuck you and your W shirt and Hillary lawn sign… Your kid is going to wind up with heart disease by high school if you don’t discover the word no. No you can’t eat whatever you want and drink sugary bullshit. Your son has bitch tits… I know that might be harsh to hear but you can thank the Cubs and Hillary. Bitch fucking tits on a 10-year-old and why? Because you can’t say no to him? You wanna know why my kid is fast? Because he eats yogurt instead of gummy worms and fucking Doritos…”
” I think you’re angry Tom…”
“Yes, I am. When unathletic fucks like you gloat, I get mad. You don’t know dick about how to really win and it falls into your lap tonight and you’re like a fucking scientist about baseball. Yes… The fast capable kids play defense on my teams and really I believe your son would be happier with a hot dog and a drink up in the stands next to you than forechecking. You got season tickets and you want your little son of sam to play like Kane or Toews.”
Gail came up and hugged Gil and put her hand over his mouth. Gil pushed Gail away in a way that let her know that he was not done. Tom had enough drinks to stand up to Gil and he did.
“You’re mad that the Dodgers lost and that Trump is about to go down in flames. Too many people do not buy into the Hitleresque bullshit spewed by Trump. Mexicans are the paste that holds this country together. Who is going to do the shit they do for the money they make? Big strong, stupid, flag waving, tear-in-the-eye patriot who hates anything not white. You’re the big hockey coach but you weren’t quite good enough to make it so what do you do? You coach.”
Gil took a step towards Tom with the thought to give Tom a smack. Tom sneered and raised his chin as if to say, “smack me! I don’t give a shit.”
“You know something, fuckface? I won’t ever apologize for being white. I won’t ever apologize for not blindly trusting people who hate me. Vote for whoever you fucking want. Why do we all got to know who it is? Why not put up a lawn sign that says you need a little blue pill and porn to make it with your old lady? You know what? All I need is a little text telling me to get home fast and my dick hurts to be cramped up in my jeans knowing that it’s going between my old lady’s legs just as soon as possible. You like baseball analogies? I’m the fucking closer who doesn’t need a warm up pitch. Put me in cold and I’ll finish the game…”
The women left the two men alone who were about to come to blows. Tom was about to rebut Gil when the women put on a song from the 1980’s from their youth. It was a Sinead O’Connor song called The Emperor’s New Clothes. In the light of the moon, the two men watched their rather fit middle-aged wives sing and bounce on the trampoline naked slathered in coconut oil. The oil glistened off of their breasts. The men stopped fighting and looked on at their wives without saying a word. Tom poured a glass of wine for himself and Gil. The men stripped down to nothing and joined the ladies on the trampoline on probably the last good day of the year. The song played on repeat while they made love or something resembling love beside one another.
Everyone can see what’s going on
They laugh `cause they know they’re untouchable
Not because what I said was wrong
Whatever it may bring
I will live by my own policies
I will sleep with a clear conscience
I will sleep in peace
Maybe it sounds mean
But I really don’t think so
You asked for the truth and I told you
Through their own words
They will be exposed
They’ve got a severe case of
The emperor’s new clothes

Half Families, Ice Hockey and Wonderpets

March 3, 2015

Every couple, every family has that thing that puts them over the edge. For Coach Monahan and his wife Lynn, the team manager of the squirt house league ice Devils hockey team was a bacon cheeseburger on a pretzel bun.

It would be too simplistic to blame the burger. Of course it was the overbearing, unrealistic parents with stopwatches and whining about “balanced ice time” and the problem of living life in America. Lynn would approach her husband about parental concerns while Coach Monahan would watch NHL highlights late night after their kids went to bed, long after practices and games.

“J wants to know why his son J jr. never gets to play on the power play or penalty kill and why it is that when there are faceoffs in our zone, you pull his line off the ice.”

Monahan looked over at his wife who was monitoring the mundane lives of Facebook friends and catching up on email beside him on the couch. She would rather be watching Kardashians but would let Monahan watch hockey highlights. Monahan got a free pass for going to watch 50 Shades of Gray instead of staying home to watch the Detroit Red Wings play the San Jose Sharks in real-time. Monahan taped it instead. 50 Shades seemed improbable and too Harlequin to be real for Monahan but he was a trooper and for that reason, Lynn was a trooper right back. She did have to ask her husband the coach how she the team manager should answer a group question copied to the whole team. Monahan answered Lynn.

“Junior is twenty to thirty pounds too heavy. J who knows nothing about the fucking sport of ice hockey and should be happy that his little butterball gets as much equitable ice time as I can afford without giving the game away because his little liability is huffing and puffing like a middle-aged man making love… Ask J why it was that he didn’t have the nutsack to ask me these questions tonight when he was standing over me while I tied my skates to get on the fucking ice. He talked about how cold it was outside and how much his kid is learning from me and then goes home and poses questions he could have asked me in person. Ask why it is that he needs an open forum to ask a question that he knows the answer to- his kid is fat, slow and ineffective and uninspired to move his fat ass to the best of his ability. Video games and high fructose drinks have caused him to develop tits and love handles at a young age. When the boy smiles, his eyes disappear… Am I going to fast, dear?”

Lynn did not answer Monahan. Instead she wrote the email verbatim paused for a moment before hitting the send button much the way pilot paused before hitting the drop button on the Enola Gay before releasing the first atomic bomb on Japan in 1945.

The answer did not sit well with some parents and with others it was exactly how they felt only they would never have constructed such a frank response. J, the father of Junior, did not attend the next game but he did make sure that several officials from the league were in attendance to monitor the game. The game went poorly. The goalie was sick and so a stand in had to face a firing squad of competent skaters and shooters and stood there like a deer in the headlights, like a scarecrow in a field a corn field- you get the picture.

After the game, before the pilgrimage home, the family unit stopped for food. Monahan’s step-daughter ordered a bacon pretzel deluxe but failed to mention that she did not want onion, mustard, mayonnaise, catsup and lettuce. The prepubescent curled her lip at the food as if she had a pile of shit on her tray.

“This is not what you wanted?”

“I didn’t want all this stuff on it.”

“Did you tell them you wanted nothing but a burger, bacon and a bun?”

“Well… She didn’t ask me.”

Monahan took a deep breath, took the sandwich to the woman behind the counter and asked her to scrape off everything and give it back to him. Monahan’s step-daughter opened the burger and was astute enough to see that it was not a new burger but the same burger which had been scraped of condiments. This caused momma to come to her daughter’s rescue.

“You could yell and scream at kids and refs for an hour and a half but you don’t have the fortitude to go ask a small woman behind the counter to just give us a plain burger. It’s not coming out of her pocket. She won’t be offended… And I’ll tell you this- your daughter will not wear her coat in an ice box ice rink when I tell her too, will not urinate when I remind her to, will not drink lemonade because it’s pink and none of that matters to you. You want to give MY daughter a hard time over a burger. I will buy the fucking burger myself. I will go face that tough looking woman behind the counter and ask for another burger. Sit here with your daughter and ask her why she cannot drink lemonade that is pink.”

It was at that moment that Monahan pictured himself walking out of the restaurant, getting into the car and driving to the most southern point in the United States- Key West. No ice except in glasses, no hockey, no parents, no wife, no kids, no problems. Just a Mai-Tai and warm water.

On the ride home, Monahan’s daughter was quietly listening to a Taylor Swift song next to Lynn’s daughter. Lynn looked out of the passenger window with tightly folded arms. Monahan knew there was nothing he could say to make Lynn speak to him at that moment. He knew that being a coach was a thankless job that he did for the kids and that being the team manager was a thankless job his wife did to share in something he loves and to be with him. Monahan turned down the radio and began to sing a song that he learned watching the Wonderpets with his daughter when she was a toddler. Monahan always thought that the idea of a talking duck, guinea pig and turtle was pretty lame but the song popped into his head and he knew his wife would soften up and laugh if he could get the girls to just sing along with him.

“This is sew-ious, there’s a baby bewd in twouble somewhere… What’s gonna work? Teamwork! What’s gonna work? Teamwork!”

Yes, it was teamwork that melted the ice in Lynn’s heart, made the pre-teen forget about her hamburger debacle, the grade schooler forget about lemonade being pink, made Monahan not look like a too serious lce hockey coach who was afraid to rectify a burger gone wrong.

 

Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms

January 14, 2014

If you live in a place like Australia or Brazil, it would be hard to imagine it being colder than inside a freezer with wind and snow.  Not a soul stirred outside a small restaurant five miles west of the United Center on Madison Street in Chicago.  It was the sort of night when police officers are directed to pick up homeless and dump them off at centers designated for warming during extreme cold.

The owner of the small bar washed dishes, toilets, tables and salt off the hardwood floors that was tracked in by patrons alone.  The Chicago Blackhawks were playing the San Jose Sharks at the United Center just a few miles away.  A man with a voice best fit for opera, sang the national anthem of the United States.  Over weight, mustachioed buffoons stuffed into hockey jerseys like casing around sausage of white, black or red colors with a the profile of a Semitic looking indigenous American Indian plastered across their chests, cheered wildly for a song that they really didn’t like or revere all that much.  The proprietor leaned on his mop and watched the display of temporary patriotism prior to the start of the game and wondered how many of the “fans” actually understood the game of ice hockey.  As the owner pondered something that could not be quantified, a neighborhood patron entered the establishment.  There he stood with long flowing hair a la Fabio and a deeply assertive voice.

“I take it you have the game on…”

“If you want me to turn on the Bachelor, I could do that for you…”

“Quite droll…  Fix me a Motherfucker post haste, my good man.”

A Motherfucker is composed of Gin, Rum, vodka, triple sec, Galliano, Hennessey and a splash of whatever cola you have available.  The former marine who went by the biblical name Matthew downed two Motherfuckers before two other patrons entered the bar.  The pair who soon entered the bar was already liquored up and only entered the bar because they saw humans watching a television screen together in front of a wide array of liquor.  They were old, white, rich, drunk and obnoxious.  The bartender, floor washer braced for idiocy as he asked what it was that they wanted to drink.

“A really good bourbon that would remind a man of a warm day at the Kentucky derby where debutants team up waiting to be tapped like kegs.  Yes a bourbon for me and whatever beer my accomplice might want.”

The accomplice rattle off a slew of obscure microbrews that most people never heard of and then settled for a Harp.  The bourbon drinker appeared to be a bloated Richard Gere with money.  He spilled a little of his bourbon on his white shirt and then went on to tell the other two men how he bought the suit jacket in Bermuda while on vacation with the wife of a close friend.

“Do you have a Lear Jet?  Have you ever been to Nova Scotia to see the total eclipse of the sun?”  Asked the barman.

“Only an old fart would refer to a song written by a young woman who is now in her seventies.”

“Your only as old as you allow yourself to feel, my good man.”

“Fuck both of you and this long haired pussy motherfucker right here.  Only a faggot wears his hair that fucking long, hoping to get butt plugged by a priest or a Penn State football coach…”

Mathew took a look at the thin man dressed as though he had escaped from a country club, raised his Motherfucker to his lips and then posed a question.

“What kind of a J. Crew looking dork wears Topsiders with no socks on a day when it’s colder here than in Alaska.  You wanna make fun of my hair?  I can still comb and grow my own.  In fact I’m willing to donate the hair off my nut sack so that a fuck stick like you can grow a little on top of their head…  Calm down Sally before you get hurt.  I’ve fucked tougher guys than you in prison when I had nothing to do.  I am a Marine and have fought to keep this country free for people like you.  Enjoy your first drinking experience and fuck yourself.”

Everyone but the longhaired Marine laughed.  The mince man with beer muscles decided to accost the longhaired man because he was indeed jealous that a nearly middle-aged man could wear his hair like a debutante.  Mathew covered his drink with a bar napkin and went out to the sidewalk to have a cigarette.  Within a minute, the other two men walked out to the sidewalk to have cigars.  The Richard Gere-esqe man bragged about a one night stand with a young woman that he had landed the night before and how he had referred to something from the 1980s and went on to learn that she was born in 1991.  The country clubber began to sob about his recent divorce and how he missed his kids.  Matthew flicked his cigarette into the street and went back in to watch the hockey game.  Chicago was up 2-1 in the third period.  Matthew told the barkeep how good the Blackhawks were and how they were going to go on and win another Stanley Cup this year.  The bartender with the Detroit Red Wing tattoo on his left arm that was visible listened and politely disagreed.

“Corey Crawford is playing about as good as Joan Crawford.  I will bet you $20.00 that he let’s in a goal to tie and they lose in OT…”

Matthew slammed down a twenty-dollar bill on the bar.  Not more than a minute later, San Jose scored a goal to tie the game.  Matthew ordered another Motherfucker.  Richard Gere and the country clubber returned from the cold smelling of cigars.  The man with Topsiders playfully punched Matthew’s shoulder, as he was about to take a sip of his Motherfucker.  The Motherfucker spilled on Matthew’s shirt.  He stood and grabbed the shirt of the thin man.  The manager reached over the bar and pushed both men away from each other.  The man with a sweater draped over his shoulders like a Princeton co-ed laughed in the face of the longhaired military man.  It only serves to stoke the flames of anger in a man who angered easily.

“I like blindly patriotic fucks like you…  You sign up to die for causes that don’t even exist.  You cry during Chevy truck commercials and love the president because he’s the commander-and-chief.  Never mind that he was born in Kenya.”

Matthew took out a small revolver and set it on the bar.  The sweater-clad man pushed Matthew off of his barstool and laughed.  Matthew grabbed his gun, pressed it to the foot of the offender and discharged his weapon.  The bullet went through the foot of the thin man, bounced off of the floor and lodged in the ceiling of the establishment.  The thin man howled in pain and then laughed so hard that he urinated in his pants.  Richard Gere slapped down a $100.00 and told the barman to keep the change.  He didn’t want any part of a police inquiry that could last all night.  Matthew was suddenly scared for what he did but remained stoic.  He apologized to the barkeeper for a sudden lapse of sane judgment but justified the act by stating that the victim was an asshole.  The victim agreed that he was an asshole and asked for a cab to be called.

“I’m a dick.  I know it.  My wife would agree with me.  I’m just going to take myself to the hospital and claim that some punk with a hood on shot me when I wouldn’t give him any money for panhandling…  Oh shit.  The Blackhawks did lose the game.  Looks like longhairs lost twenty bucks.”

“Do you want me to shoot your other fucking foot?”

“No…  How bout a shot of tequila before the cab comes and it’s on me…  Bartender, pour yourself one.”

The three men had a shot of tequila and then Matthew helped the thin divorced man with a sweater draped over his shoulders, no socks and a hole in his foot get into a cab.  Matthew accompanied the man to the emergency room where they both agreed it was a young guy with a hood on who shot the thin man in the foot.  The desk clerk, a black woman asked for a description of the offender.  Both white men looked at one another before answering.  Matthew decided to answer.

“It would be racist of me to say that the offender was of a particular race consistent with this sort of crime, ma’am”

The black woman held her pen to her lips and squinted while listening to Matthew.  She surmised that the crime was a drunken mistake.  She posed a question.

“Do you want to admit to shooting this man in the foot or should I just wait for the police to ask you?”

Never Tear Us Apart

July 23, 2013

“My old man dies and doesn’t leave me his antique cars, his house, his summer house, his condo in Florida, his restaurants but he leaves me a fucking horse?”

“Yes…  A horse.  The horse is housed at the Hazel Park track and is a harness racer.  Your father saw to it that all the expenses for the horse are taken care of.  There is a note that goes along with this if you would like me to go ahead and read it.” Said the Attorney.

“Sure…  Read the fucking note.”

Nicholas,

I had always hoped that you would have had my ambition to succeed and persevere.  You had extraordinary talent for ice hockey and were content living in my basement to play beer pong and X-Box.  The fact that I owned several Coney Island restaurants and you were content being counter help for minimum wage instead of helping me run things, sent up a red flag years ago.  I have left the chain of restaurants to your sister as well as my homes and cars.   You can have that beat up old home in Detroit that you now live in with your friend and I too leave you my horse.  I was given this horse as a gift and I am giving it to you as a gift.  I envision you and your bust-out buddy, sitting in the stands at Hazel Park betting your pittance against your own horse.  It is yours to do with as you wish.  Your mother always came to your rescue whenever I tried to push you along and you never amounted to much.  I love you, Nicholas but could not in good conscience give all that I created to you just to have it melt away.  Have fun with the horse.

Dad

“My dad was always a tight waded motherfucker…  So when can I see my horse?”

Nick finished playing morning pick up hockey with Anthony at the Hazel Park rink in suburban Detroit and showed up at the stable where their horse was housed.  In the stable was a small black man in a Speedo bathing suit and a pair of Timberland boots that was singing and doing Tai Chi moves.  He had long hair and was ripped, as he was petite.  Josiah sang the INXS song, Two Worlds Colliding.  Josiah was unaware of the two large white men watching him as he closed his eyes and sang until tears came to his eyes.

Don’t ask me
What you know is true

Don’t have to tell you
I love your precious heart

I
I was standing,
you were there

Two worlds collided
And they could never tear us apart

We could live
For a thousand years
But if I hurt you
I’d make wine from your tears

I told you
That we could fly
’cause we all have wings
But some of us don’t know why

I
I was standing
You were there,
Two worlds collided
And they could never ever tear us apart.

“Fucking great…  I inherited a broken down horse with a gay Sammy Davis Jr. horse jockey.”

The smallish black man stepped up to the two white men without fear.  He spoke like the Geico gecko which surprised the men even more.”

“Take me for a fucking poofter will ya?  I’ve shagged more female white and dark meat in me loife than Colonel fucking Sanders could shake a stick at, mate.  Fuck with me and you’ll be feeding the fucking trees.  Now then…  Who the fuck are you?”

Josiah’s great-great-great grandfather had been taken on ship from England and dumped in Australia.  Josiah’s ancestor was a former slave that was imprisoned and had found aboriginal people and mated with them.  Josiah wanted to be a singer and actor and was working his way to Hollywood from Sydney, Australia and was stuck in a quagmire, which was Detroit.  Josiah was talking with two career recreational, non-paid ice hockey players who never quite made it and they never made it because they lacked drive and dedication.  They coasted throughout their twenties and at the cusp of thirty years of age, they were about to become inspired by a Prince look-a-like who was determined to win harness races, earn enough money and move to California to be discovered.

Josiah took the hands of Anthony and Nick and looked them intently in their eyes and began to sing again.

“You were standing…  I was there…  Two worlds colliding and they could never tear us apart…  We were fucking brought together by a hoi-er being for the purpose of making it, mates.  Let’s not fuck this up, eh?”

Nick and Anthony laughed hardy laughs and took their jockey to a Detroit Tigers game and then to the casino.  They got trashed and then formed a triumvirate.  Within a year, their horse won enough money for Nick and Anthony to buy a low-level minor league hockey franchise for $30,000 in the Michigan League.  On Friday and Saturday nights, you can find them playing for their own team at a rink in Suburban Detroit.  Patrons pay $5.00 to see fights and a little hockey.   Working at a coffee shop in West Hollywood, California is a singing, small black man with a strong Australian accent, passionately desperate to realize his dreams so much so that he inspires all those that he touches to try harder and keep hope truly alive.  Two worlds colliding.

Never Tear Us Apart

July 23, 2013

“My old man dies and doesn’t leave me his antique cars, his house, his summer house, his condo in Florida, his restaurants but he leaves me a fucking horse?”

“Yes…  A horse.  The horse is housed at the Hazel Park track and is a harness racer.  Your father saw to it that all the expenses for the horse are taken care of.  There is a note that goes along with this if you would like me to go ahead and read it.” Said the Attorney.

“Sure…  Read the fucking note.”

Nicholas,

I had always hoped that you would have had my ambition to succeed and persevere.  You had extraordinary talent for ice hockey and were content living in my basement to play beer pong and X-Box.  The fact that I owned several Coney Island restaurants and you were content being counter help for minimum wage instead of helping me run things, sent up a red flag years ago.  I have left the chain of restaurants to your sister as well as my homes and cars.   You can have that beat up old home in Detroit that you now live in with your friend and I too leave you my horse.  I was given this horse as a gift and I am giving it to you as a gift.  I envision you and your bust-out buddy, sitting in the stands at Hazel Park betting your pittance against your own horse.  It is yours to do with as you wish.  Your mother always came to your rescue whenever I tried to push you along and you never amounted to much.  I love you, Nicholas but could not in good conscience give all that I created to you just to have it melt away.  Have fun with the horse.

 

Dad

 

“My dad was always a tight waded motherfucker…  So when can I see my horse?”

Nick finished playing morning pick up hockey with Anthony at the Hazel Park rink in suburban Detroit and showed up at the stable where their horse was housed.  In the stable was a small black man in a Speedo bathing suit and a pair of Timberland boots that was singing and doing Tai Chi moves.  He had long hair and was ripped, as he was petite.  Josiah sang the INXS song, Two Worlds Colliding.  Josiah was unaware of the two large white men watching him as he closed his eyes and sang until tears came to his eyes.

 

Don’t ask me
What you know is true

Don’t have to tell you
I love your precious heart

I
I was standing,
you were there

Two worlds collided
And they could never tear us apart

We could live
For a thousand years
But if I hurt you
I’d make wine from your tears

I told you
That we could fly
’cause we all have wings
But some of us don’t know why

I
I was standing
You were there,
Two worlds collided
And they could never ever tear us apart.

“Fucking great…  I inherited a broken down horse with a gay Sammy Davis Jr. horse jockey.”

The smallish black man stepped up to the two white men without fear.  He spoke like the Geico gecko which surprised the men even more.”

“Take me for a fucking poofter will ya?  I’ve shagged more female white and dark meat in me loife than Colonel fucking Sanders could shake a stick at, mate.  Fuck with me and you’ll be feeding the fucking trees.  Now then…  Who the fuck are you?”

Josiah’s great-great-great grandfather had been taken on ship from England and dumped in Australia.  Josiah’s ancestor was a former slave that was imprisoned and had found aboriginal people and mated with them.  Josiah wanted to be a singer and actor and was working his way to Hollywood from Sydney, Australia and was stuck in a quagmire, which was Detroit.  Josiah was talking with two career recreational, non-paid ice hockey players who never quite made it and they never made it because they lacked drive and dedication.  They coasted throughout their twenties and at the cusp of thirty years of age, they were about to become inspired by a Prince look-a-like who was determined to win harness races, earn enough money and move to California to be discovered.

Josiah took the hands of Anthony and Nick and looked them intently in their eyes and began to sing again.

“You were standing…  I was there…  Two worlds colliding and they could never tear us apart…  We were fucking brought together by a hoi-er being for the purpose of making it, mates.  Let’s not fuck this up, eh?”

Nick and Anthony laughed hardy laughs and took their jockey to a Detroit Tigers game and then to the casino.  They got trashed and then formed a triumvirate.  Within a year, their horse won enough money for Nick and Anthony to buy a low-level minor league hockey franchise for $30,000 in the Michigan League.  On Friday and Saturday nights, you can find them playing for their own team at a rink in Suburban Detroit.  Patrons pay $5.00 to see fights and a little hockey.   Working at a coffee shop in West Hollywood, California is a singing, small black man with a strong Australian accent, passionately desperate to realize his dreams so much so that he inspires all those that he touches to try harder and keep hope truly alive.  Two worlds colliding.

 

Beyond Good and Evil- The Hockey Coach

February 1, 2012

The Oshawa Whackers had a season unlike any professional team had ever had in any sport at anytime.  They went from a dismal last place finish last year in the Ontario Hockey League to a nearly undefeated season.  The franchise had to thank Otto Werner for the turn of events.

            Otto was born and raised in Kitchener, Ontario and came from a long line of Germans going back to Prussia.  Otto’s grandfather jokingly told Otto at a young age that their family was related to Bismarck and for that reason Otto was named after his great, great uncle by marriage on his mother’s side; Otto Von Bismarck. 

            At a young age, Otto believed he was born special because he was German and a descendant of the man who was responsible for unifying most of the German-speaking people.

 Otto like all young Canadian boys, learned to play hockey and he excelled at it.  Otto made it all the way to the NHL and did well at the top level of the hockey world until he was forced to quit due to concussions.  Otto had well over five solid concussions during his two years of NHL hockey.  Since leaving the NHL, Otto became a coach who knocked around all over Canada at various levels.  Otto coached for a few years at Waterloo University and it was while he was at the school that he received a BA in philosophy.  At the age of fifty, Otto was the picture of health and virility.  Otto ate well, played hockey five days a week, lifted weights, listened to Wagner and studied Friedrich Nietzsche as if he was a god and that is sort of funny since Nietzsche claimed god was dead or worse, never was.

            Before the championship game with a 3-0 lead over Guelph after at 74-6 season, Otto made love twice to a young female student who came from a farming community in western Ontario.  She read passages of Nietzsche while Otto did pushups naked.  Rather than touch his chin to the ground, when his flaccid cock hit the ground, Otto would spring back up.  Melanie, with her exposed swollen breasts, full of life, sat on the bed reading a poem out loud which was written by Richard Wagner while Ride of the Valkyries blared on the an actual phonograph.

                        Is this still German?

                        Out of a German heart, this sultry screeching?

                        A German body, this self-laceration?

                        German, this priestly affectation,

                        The insense-perfumed sensual Preaching?

            Otto stopped Melanie who was not reading the poem as if it was a question but rather a statement.  Otto popped two pain pills to stop what he described as broken glass pressing against his brain.  Without the pain pills, it felt like shards of glass were digging into his skull.  After a glass of German white wine and two pain pills, rough sex and a shower, Otto left for the arena.  The young men filed in and began stretching out and taping their sticks.  Otto entered wearing a suit with his hands in his pockets.  His black hair was slicked back and his eyes made him look as if he was somewhere else all together.  The players thought their coach was a whack job and that moniker would be fitting for a hockey coach of a team called The Whackers.

            “Between good and evil…  Lays victory.  Several thousand people from this town will come today to see a victory…  A man who says, “I like this, I take this for my own and want to protect it and defend it against anybody”.  This is what I have sought in each and every one of you all season long.  You trusted me and I believed in you.  With so much starvation in the world, what will this victory ultimately mean in the larger scheme of things?  Well, not a fucking thing actually to anyone but us.  You become a permanent statistic in a book and on a cup so that when we leave this place, it will be noted that on this day, we did something that meant something to several thousand residents of this town and to every man who put everything into achieving something tangible and something memorable.  We are less than tiny grains of sand in a cosmos we cannot begin to grasp and yet I must tell you that of all the things in this life that you could undertake, playing ice hockey is among the noblest of occupations.  It is a secret we hold dear to our hearts and is our national treasure.  It is more than a sport, it is life itself.  For those who toil at menial tasks for a pittance to sustain themselves, they always come back to the arena to honour and appreciate those who have mastered the art of working together for a common goal and a greater good which is hockey.  Every attainment, every step forward follows from courage, from hardness against oneself.  There is an innocence in admiration; it is found in those to whom it has never yet occurred that they, too might be admired someday…  Simply put, finish off these suffering Guelph bastards.  They couldn’t hold your jocks at a Sunday mass.  You all are aware of where you stand in the history of modern day sports if you win this game.  Where we go from here is not as important today as what we can and will achieve…  Fucking bury them and then say a prayer.”

            The Whackers won handily and the coach who was a cross between Adolph Hitler and Vince Lombardi, quietly slipped away during all the celebrating.  At a hotel off route 401 that runs from north of Toronto to Windsor, a fire broke out.  This fire was a magnificent blaze that took firemen from several small towns to help extinguish.  News reporters arrived at the scene to interview those that were able to escape.  One of the survivors was a man by the name of Otto Werner.  He wore a white robe and had his arm around two young women that looked young enough to be his daughters only they weren’t.  The news reporter recognized Otto and asked Otto if he was relieved that he made it out alive and then asked what he was doing in a hotel in a town that he lived in. Otto never took his arms off of the young women that were shy in front of the cameras.  Otto smiled and grasped the shoulders of the two young women and then kissed them both on their cheeks before speaking. 

            “Around the hero, everything turns to tragedy…”