Let’s start from the middle.
I’m shrieking like a banshee in the downstairs bathroom of my parent’s house. My younger brother comes bolting down the stairs. “ARE YOU OKAY??!!!” he screams.
I am not. The skin at the top of my penis, or the frenulum if you will, is caught in the zipper of my work pants. Why I decided to go ‘commando’ that day? I’ll never know. Thinking it was no big deal, I tried to just quickly unzip it. HOLY SHIT. The most excruciating pain I’ve ever felt. “I think you need to take me to the hospital..”, I tell my brother, tears welled up in my eyes by now. He laughs, and agrees. I grab some scissors and cut the fly off my pants around my wounded soldier. Put on some other pants over that. We drive. He smirks the whole way.
We arrive and I check in. Wait 30 minutes. Finally they call my name. “So why are you here?” the nurse asks me, she asks. I say sheepishly, “I’m stuck in my zipper.” “What? What’s stuck in your zipper?”, she asks. “My penis.”, I replied. “WHY DIDN’T YOU SAY SO???!!!” she exclaims. Off to the ER I go.
The doctor arrives. He looks at my situation and snickers. Two minutes later he shows up with about twelve interns all looking at my zip locked dick and laughing. Great. They even pulled the curtain back so other patients could bask in my shame. Everyone had a good chuckle. I thought, “Fuck whatever is wrong with you! My dick hurts for real.” Then the doc pulls out the needle….
Years ago, I was walking up Broadway towards 42nd street, alone. An old homeless man pleads to me, “Please, make a donation to the ‘United Negro Pizza Fund’!!??” Amused, and grateful for his originality, I gave him 2 bucks for a slice (or whatever else, who knows, I don’t judge.) As I’m walking away on this busy street he shouts to me, “THANK YOU!!! THANK YOU!!! MAY YOU GET LAID A THOUSAND TIMES TONIGHT!!!!”
Now, obviously this is physically impossible. I chuckled about it the whole way to where ever I was going that night.
All I remember was him.
Okay, so… Daoism? Daoist. Darwinism? Darwinist. Buddhism? Buddhist.
Alcoholism? Alcoholist. Right? It only makes sense. An ‘ism’ by definition is a doctrine or belief. I believe in it and it works for me. I went to rehab screaming, “NO! NO! NO! I’ll miss my wine and my house!!” (yep. I just did that.) The doctors ask me why I checked in. “Drinking”, I says I says. Their response was, “That’s all???” At this point I almost felt guilty for not shooting heroin.
Okay, so…I get to my room. It’s like the bastard child of a hospital and a motel. My room mate’s name is Joe. “Pills” he told me before I even asked. Didn’t care. “Drinking”, I replied. He looked even more perplexed than the doctors.
Seriously? That’s just cruel. They gave me the patch. Worked for me. Not for Joe though. He starts sifting through his pockets and pulling out tobacco crumbs and lint and God knows what else. I’m doing a crossword puzzle when he asks me if I have any papers on me. I do not. This white, lanky dude with dark hair, bloodshot and marble mouthed, rips a piece of paper off of my newspaper. This maniac rolls the most fucked up, cracked out, pinner of a pocket menthol, lint, and God knows what else ‘cigarette’ and smokes it in the bathroom. Immediately I realize I don’t have a problem.
Three days after finally reading Watchmen and Dante’s Inferno the doctors tell me I can leave. Under one condition; You need a prescription for something called Cepasol. It’s a pill. I tell the doctors,”You know if you changed the ‘s’ to a ‘b’ Cepasol would be an anagram for ‘placebo’.” The doctor cracks up. The crossword puzzles paid off. Word up.
My parents pick me up. They ask me how I’m feeling.
I says, “Okay, so…”
Great men arise out of fear.
Out of genitals and into trust funds. Out of mind. Out of sight. Into wealth. Out of health.
Into dust. In the heartless stitch of a dead father’s eyelid.
Leaning against the checkbook. Snatching crutches from the legless. Arming themselves.
With faces of fool’s gold. Tangled in the net worth.
(Excerpt from my journal from like 10 years ago. Yikes.)
When I was a younger man I wanted so badly to not be like anybody else. I did everything I could to seem ‘original’. Green hair? Check. Big ass weird glasses? Check. Wearing a top hat and a coat with tails is a sure fire way to getting your ass kicked by football players, kids.
Was I asking for it? I don’t know. Those soulless fuckers did then and still do now represent everything I never wanted to be. When you want to be the opposite of everyone around you they create you, in a way. So who wins?
Knowing you don’t fit in is the key. Looking the part is secondary. Laughing at them when you’re getting mad laid after high school because you’re smarter is rewarding, to a degree.
After graduation the whole football team dyed their hair green.
Consequently, I did the opposite.
Does the realization of knowing you have no right to complain give you the right to complain? Are you angry because you have no reason to be angry? Well, maybe you do. Far less than others, though. Do you determine your level of ‘happiness’ based on other’s ‘unhappiness?’ Are you the victim of having a job that some people would kill for but it’s killing you? Are you sick and tired of being paid good money to help the truly sick and tired? Well, have I got the answer for you….
It’s my new product called ‘Shut The Fuck Up’ juice.
Yes Ladies and Gentlemen, one sip of ‘Shut The Fuck Up’ juice and your fingers are rendered useless. Texting, Facebook, Twitter, or whatever shit it is you do at your desk job all day, as opposed to actually doing it, is physically impossible. No longer will you have to suffer though tweeting, “Cathy in the editing dept. smells like anchovies.” Or the ever burdening and controversial Facebook posting of, “Look what this stupid intern wrote on her cover letter.” No, no, NO. One can of ‘Shut The Fuck Up’ juice and you’ll almost be on your way to being a real human being to other human beings.
As you may have noticed by now, I use this product regularly. So, if you want to criticize me on my job, have a cool refreshing glass of ‘Shut The Fuck Up’, finger me an on-line complaint, and just try and call me, as your thumbs are numb by now.
If you have a problem with your job, simply shut the fuck up and drink.