Open Letter #96 to My Heart and Facial Tac-tics
There are days the credibility of this entire operation withers under scrutiny. Days like today, yesterday. Last week. September. 1992 through 1997. The phrase beyond belief
. A briefcase has been handcuffed to my wrist. What is in it? We have been waiting around for too many seasons now to mention hoping to get an answer. You should know the writer is making it up as he/she goes, and no amount of histrionics or quirky detail will prepare you for the eventual realization that there is nothing in the briefcase. The island is a jungle backlot. The professor is a schizophrenic. Gilligan has a jet ski parked around back. Mary Anne dreamt the Others and convinced us they were real. Integrity has been compromised. God accidentally left the polar bear on a live set and the plot had no choice but to encompass it.That place you stayed last night was under surveillance.
You were busted while you slept.
A list of things/notions swirling in my late, gnawing Fear:
1) A middle-aged office temp named Justin Stone
3) “Minimum payment of [a lot] due by [yesterday]”
3a) 22% apr
4) Mechanical birds
5) High school reunion
6) Small talk
7) Political opinion
8) My car’s anxious idle
8b) Photos of me lying
9) Others using the public restroom in my office
10) Carpal tunnel syndrome
11) Food preparation
12) Serious writing
13) Parking tickets
13a) Street cleaning, literally
14a) Intricate filigree of silver, failure & folly
14b) Headlong foisting of things
14bI) Dream somersaults (long falling)
15) A clock beneath the floorboards of my chest
16) My unfinished thesis production of Onan the Barbarian
A list of options:
1) Dental work
2) Mental work
3) Seals, to throw off the sharks
5) Learn a new trade (something, perhaps, with “smith” at the end of it)
6) A seat in the Missouri Commonwealth?
7) Pine tar, benzoin? (need to give the ball some action)
9) Shoot night for day, 8 day weeks
11) Keep pulling my shirt down
12) Take long walks; stare at homes
13) Coach a team of inmates into the sectional championships
Jon Bon Jovi did not famously say that we will sleep when we’re dead, but he did say it. Fact: I am tired. Slippery When Wet
was one of the first tapes we could listen to together, mom.
Will Oldham, Bonny Billy, Significant Wolf, thanks for making it all better the other night at The Smell. You were an electric rascal, buddy. You had me goose-pimpled and high-minded again, you slipped me a bit of that wily consciousness.
I would have left with you, had I not had this thing go down. Might you know a bail bondsman? I swear I remember you telling me that your cousin was a bailbondsman, or that your cousin used to date a bailbondsman? Maybe you can go into the bathroom and find me that number? The ad was above the stall, I think, or on the back of the door?
His name was Terry...?
Also, if you have a few bucks. I can get a tax return again in a couple years and I will hit you back, bro.
I hate having to do this. Beg and sally. Wheedle. Search want ads. Hide out in libraries and book stores. The contact high doesn't last the walk home. Once I'm out, I'm going to quit, I'm going straight. I'm going back to night school. Classes about frowns turning upside down, maybe some web design. I know you have seen this particular blogger template all over the internet. Not only that, I know you have repeatedly seen this template filled with the most trying writing! Oh, my gawd. The ridiculous, boring suffering my fellow citizens must bear. For all this and more, I apologize, mother. This is what we get. This is what it's come to. What would you call the opposite of Manifest Destiny, mom? The question would appear to be the set-up for a great punch line, but I am afraid there is none. The answer is a turkey sandwich. Ba-da-bing! Ginger told me that joke. Oh Captain, where is my Captain? With Gilligan, settling in amongst the crash survivors. In flashback we see there never was an assignment I couldn't skip, a responsibility I couldn't shirk. There never was a challenge I could rise to.
I have just been informed that there is
something in the briefcase. Gawd; this is all I need. If it ain’t one thing, it’s another, and usually that other thing is wearing a lousy wig and painting his nails with shaky hands as he talks, telling you all about how he quit painting his nails last year and how he just got hooked up with a fantastic hair guy. You should see this writer’s room: the get-ups, the prancing, the plastic bowling set, the voodoo dolls, yesterday’s one-liners, Nero’s bust. You would positively drown your television. I apologize for the desperate tenor of this missive, but what is one to do…?