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Jett Superior laid this on you on || August 15, 2003 || 10:15 am

I see two problems with the world today: There are far too many boys with muttonchop sideburns and there is no place to park my gum (that the wine is not coming fast enough is no issue at present; it may just be in another two minutes…that will probably be just long enough to remedy the gum dilemma, but not near long enough to address the sideburn thing).

Birmingham (Bummingham), Alabama is hotter than four hells today: Take-the-Lord’s-name-in-vain hot and I sit here with a slick of sweat over my cleavage, the same sweat curling the hairs unruly at my neck. This is the kind of swelter that suggests you might do well to peel off the clothes down to underthings (maybe blessedly further) and shave every hair on your body, allowing the perspiration to roll southward unfettered. Either that, or find another body to writhe against for a time, pushing the heat to a fever pitch so as to feel infinitely cooler afterward.

The shade of indoors, the plum-colored tables and stools offer no great respite. Purple –any shade of it– is the last fucking color in the world I want to see today. The blues aren’t blue, they are as purple as the crucifixion cloth and soaked just as deeply with vinegar, blood and tears (there are other bodily fluids in there I’m sure, but I’ve no mind for speculation today). This begs the question (I can’t help that these questions occur to me, I can only release them the best way I know how so that they cease to plague me) of whether or not Jesus would have received a pint jar of bathtub gin had one been offered. Jesus, after all, knew the muddy dirt of humanity better’n anyone. Yeah, Jesus knew the blues and other sordid ruminations. Jesus was the father of the blues.

“My God,” he cried, “My God, why hast thou forsaken [ed. note: emphasis purely suppostion on my part...] me??”

“Waitress,” I said boldly upon climbing this here stool, “I will be drinking my lunch today.” She masked her surprise well, but the eyes jumped a little. What, lady? Don’t I look like the type? Is there a type?

“While I am whiling away the afternoon drinking,” I smiled sweetly at her, daubing my chest and neckline with a paper napkin, “could you gather directions to the nearest Catholic Church?” I must go light a candle and pray for my pathetically (im)mortal soul. I wonder if it’s still a penny, or has the economy wrapped its noisome tendrils about salvation, as well? How much should one pay for absolution? For grace? Comfort is far too expensive a luxury, I’d wager.

Or? Is it thought a cheat to light a candle for one’s ownself? Parochial school was forever ago.

Funny, I can’t tell if that sticker on the pole outside says ‘Raise the Guns’ or ‘Praise the Gods’. Not that it matters anyway. It seems I have done a good measure of both in my life and been ineffectual. This is not due to a lack of heart or conviction in either case. It all goes back to the simple truism that ‘Momma just says it be’s that way sometimes’. A lot of times. More times than I can count, but for fucksakes I keep putting myself out there. No regrets. The best slip of paper I ever discovered in a fortune cookie said, ‘Many a false step is made by standing still.’ You bet your sweet ass. At least I’m stupid enough to keep trying; I’ve got that much going for me. I wonder sometimes though….will I one day reach an end to my resolve? Will it sputter away and leave me essentially lifeless? Sometimes it seems such a charming option, but in reality it is one that simply scares the shit out of me. Most people can’t or won’t or don’t try because they are cowards; with me it is an inverse proposition.

I exhaust myownself, slamming headfirst or chestfirst into a wall over and over without a helmet, with only the frail skin and bone of my psyche, my emotions.

It would be somehow better today if my sorrow and confusion would stomp forward, roaring, and engulf me for a time. There’s just this mournful hollow that moves back and forth, dancing between my stomach and my chest. I’ve not ventured near a mirror, but I’d say it’s a safe bet that part of it’s camped out in my eyes. They betray; always they are giving me away to the world, so that I am forced to drape them in a disdainful scowl.

My husband said to me last week (in so many words) that my dislike of people in general is unacceptable, especially in light of the fact that I have such an understanding of them.

“Think about what you just said,” I replied, “Can’t you see that the one is born of the other? People hurt. They either hurt themselves or one another. I cannot handle the constant hurt.”

So yeah, the empty sad that I mask so carefully from you people is all I can think of right now. Though I could never do it myself, I can see where those people who take up sharp things and mar their own flesh are coming from. Somewhere to focus that empty hurt would help to purge it. I just need a grassy meadow to lie in and be inordinately sad for awhile. You know, because I told myself long ago that drugs are no longer an option. You know. You know.

::: :: ::: :: :::

As long as you hold me I’ll get by / As long as you need me I will try not to die / I don’t want the shame / I don’t want the blame / I don’t want the fame anymore

If only they’d tell me, tell me why / If I could believe them and their lies / But I don’t want their name / I don’t want their pain / I won’t play their games anymore

I always look at the last page of the book / How will it end? / The suspense robs me of lovers and friends

I don’t want the shame / I don’t want the blame / I don’t want the fame anymore

// Kirsty MacColl, “As Long As You Hold Me”

8 worked it out »

  1. gjoe 8.15.2003

    That’s a beautiful piece of wordery, Ms. Superior.

    No one has ever captured a writhing restlessness in such a way before.

     
  2. Gary 8.15.2003

    So many things:

    Jesus was offered “gall” which was an anesthetising drink. He declined because he HAD to feel the pain. We as humans HAVE to feel our own pain if we are ever to grow.

    My philosophy: Always expect the worst out of people. If they do something good then you are pleasantly surprised and if they do the worst it will only be half bad at best and no worse than expected.

    Now stick your gum in some kids sideburns, take a shower and meet hubby at the door wearing only the suit God gave you.

     
  3. Joe 8.15.2003

    Yes, even salvation comes with a price tag on it. Don’t feel bad about being misanthropic, it’s part of being human. I don’t feel so smothered as I once did because I cast my religious beliefs aside and started to live my life for myself instead of some ungrateful god, thus I was able to shed the guilt and fear, plus it makes it a whole lot easier being a misanthrope.

     
  4. Holy shit. Why am I not hearing your voice right now?

     
  5. Joe: who’s you to distinguish between an ungrateful god and an ungrateful sinner?

    Gary & Elizabeth: Bullshit. If it is your experience that people are generally bad, then you need a long hard look at yourself(s).

    Yesterday I resolved to write a list of all the people I hate. At first it was easy, all those dicks at school that were so easy to despise, for a start. But upon greater reflection I realised I don’t know a single person who has never been good to me, who is diabolically rank, who creates constant hurt.

    One in a thousand is pure scrotal fungi, he will kill your mamma for her shoes. Everyone else is on this planet trying to feel the love. And it’s not easy to feel the love when people are (for starters) expecting the worst of you.

    The husband is right for once, it is absurd to generally dislike people.

    John: sorry for stealing your thunder as the rediculously long-posting commenter.

     
  6. Jett 8.15.2003

    My, that Richard Dee is mightily cheeky!

    This is why we here at Superior Industries wholly endorse his candidacy.

     
  7. John 8.16.2003

    It’s OK Richard. Few things can take away from my ability to ramble save a swig of nepenthe.

    I have to say there are those out there that do like to spread hurt as constant as they can. I don’t know their exact numbers. As far as I can tell, most folks engage the rest from a hierarchy of concern tempered by self-interest. Only when we are far removed from most of our own worries does it even make much sense to be concerned about those on the outskirts. Self-interest is not a bad thing, it’s quite natural and the best we can hope for is a bit of the enlightened self-interest that Spinoza was on about.

    I’m not immune from hate, but it fades quickly. It doesn’t suit me and therefore I tend not to indulge beyond a rant or two.

     
  8. Joe 8.17.2003

    Mr. Bartlett if your an ungrateful sinner, that’s your business. You can keep your ungrateful god, I’m dong fine without him.

     

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