Thursday, November 20, 2008

Christmas in Heaven (Again)

The three-legged white cat scheduled to be euthanized got adopted on the eve of its execution. The vericose veins in my left leg have been removed and I can start training again next week. I'm going to spend a few nights in the shadow of Mt. Everest next month. And the not-too-far left of center utopia I've been thirsting for all my politically aware life is just around the corner.

Now, Gmail beta has themes I can add to my Email client which will greet me every time I open my Email like those mass forwarded conversations with God PowerPoint presentations that come around about every six months or so and remind me why I haven't given up, keep on keepin' on, instead of bolting for Cambodia to score morphine sulphate over the counter as a slow and painless way of beating having to work. I want for nothing.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Can I Also Go Back to Saying "I've Been Gypped"?

Cool. It's OK to be politically incorrect and rascist again. I can say things like "would you look at those bazooms", "The Cleveland Injuns needs a better relief pitcher" and "Don't be such a Hebe! Leave 20% on the tab."

Remember Earl Butz--secretary of agriculture for Nixon? He made an off-the-record joke, "the only thing the coloreds are looking for in life are tight pussy, loose shoes and a warm place to shit." That was in the less progressive, cocainey times known as the '70s. Still, Nixon sacked Butz and Butz faded into obscurity, and old white guys bitched about what this world was coming to when you could no longer make jokes about blacks and Jews.

Did that mean only blacks could tell jokes about Jews?

Poor old Jesse Jackson made a remark about NYC--off the record of course, calling it "Hymietown" back in the go-go morning-in-America 80s, and in the end, after some side stepping and blatant denials, he had to humble himself before a large congregation in a synagogue and say "Sorry, sorry about that."


Haven't we all just joined forces, linked arms, formed an unstoppable, progressive posse hell bent for leather on chasing down the elusive future of change, that better world Obama spoke of on election night in a speech that choked me up and made me all misty eyed?

So. Benjamin Emanuel, our new chief of staff's Daddy was quoted in the Jerusalem Post as saying of his son's new job, "“Obviously he’ll influence the president to be pro-Israel. Why wouldn’t he? What is he, an Arab? He’s not going to be mopping floors at the White House.”

After some prodding and kvetching by Arab-American groups, Rahm dashed out a boiler plate letter of apology. End of story.

Now, supposin' Rahm's Daddy had said, "Neggra"? or "Spick?" or "Fag" then maybe his boss would have felt that he should step up, live up to the hype, step in, or at the very least pander to special interests and remind us all that he's the point man in this posse of change.
Dammit. The man promised us change! I want my brave new world! I've earned it.

Oh, and maybe the story would not have been an A-5 single column news event.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Tear Down the Other Wall

Bury my heart at wounded knee.
Free Nelson Mandela.
Do spend seven years in Tibet and take Martin Scorsese with you to film the bloody thing.
Name streets after Martin Luther King Jr.--he deserves the honor. So does Medgar Evers. Rosa Parks is an immortal.

Rambo's gone into Burma to defend the honor of Aung San Suu Kyi.

Bobby Sands and Steve Bilko--martyrs. But so is Mohammed al-Dura.

Hollywood does like to spotlight the world's underdogs. Well, except for one. Try getting the green light for a project on the heartbreaking massacres at Sabra and Shatila.

Appointing Rahm Emanuel to be his chief of staff, as his first order of the day, is the first but won't be the last time we shouldn't be disappointed when we discover that Obama is incapable of walking on water, and that of course he owes a lot of folks with very special interests in a big way, and that those people now must be compensated.

We do know that already, don't we--that Obama can't heal lepers nor give eyesight to the blind. Don't we. Don't we?

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Pulp Sudden Fiction

A man in his early 50s, not tall, not too short, average build, his once coal black hair now streaked with gray highights above his ears, stands outside the gates of his health club. He carries a backpack. Inside the backpack there is a plastic bag filled with sweaty shorts, a sweaty t-shirt and sweaty socks, all needing to be washed. On the outside of the backpack, the outline of a maple leaf can be still be seen, the stitches having recently been removed.

In the soft evening sunset, guests from the hotel across the street come out dressed for a night on the town and begin to queue up behind the man, all waiting for a taxi. The early evening call to prayer rings out in all directions, echoing through the glass and steel skyscrapers.

A taxi stops. The man gets in and tells the driver where to take him. The taxi driver, a smiling man with a long beard wears a Chitrali, a traditional Afghani wool hat. Although he is younger than his passenger, the leatheriness of his face and his long gray beard make him look many more years senior. The driver looks in the rearview mirror and asks the fiftyish man, "Where from?"

For the first time in too many years, the man does not say, "Canada." Instead he tells the driver, "USA mother fucker. You got a problem with that?"

The taxi driver says nothing. He continues to smile because he wants a tip. His seventh child, a daughter back home in Kabul whom he's only seen once in the past five years, needs new shoes. She will start school soon and enshillah, will be the first daughter in his family who will be able to read and write thanks to the country his asshole passenger comes from. Although his passenger is an asshole, the driver stills gives him his "barack", which is the word for "blessing" in Arabic, in his Qu'ran.

"Say a prayer for the common foot soldier/ Spare a thought for his back breaking work/Say a prayer for his wife and his children/Who burn the fires and who still till the earth"