“Everybody wants to be somebody’s somethin’
Ain’t nobody wants to be blue
Ain’t nobody anywhere ever loved nothin’
Half as much as I love you
Somebody somewhere said “love is a prison”
But no one really wants to be free
I’d have to be crazy to ever think someone
Could love a nobody like me”
– Steve Earle –
I heard it said that true love is when you love someone despite of their faults. But brother that just sounds kind of snooty and condescending. I think maybe true love is when you love someone for their faults. For the flaws and defects. Because it’s that what makes them human, makes them unique and makes them yours. Ever stood close enough to a face to see the creases and pores, the texture of the skin. It’s in these tiny places that secrets are best told, when you reach up a hand and gently touch their cheek and draw them to you. And in that kiss, there’s a secret place.
Man there’s so many fools out there. And not the good kind. Yeah there’s a good kind of fool. One that will do whatever it takes to give love back. And one that knows that pushing the dark is the only way to find the light. But the bad kind is the ones out there with their plastic thin eyes, looking for the window dressing and tinkling lights. Who don’t see beauty, they only see shape. They look for the perfect number, the perfect ride, the perfect badge. Brother they spend so much time searching for the trophy. And goddamn if their might be a person attached.
It’s been my experience that there’s a lot of men out there who view women as nothing more than a life support system for tits and ass. Women are an unfortunate attachment to the orifices that best satisfy their frictional needs to reach orgasm. Harsh isn’t it. But it’s true. And believe ol’ hoss I have traveled in rarefied circles and it’s the same in factories as in circles of the “enlightened and educated”. They just call the game a different name.
And women, well if I had a dollar for every time I heard “I am not a material type” or “I just want a guy who cares and can make me laugh” I’d be a rich motherfucker. And if I had two dollars for every one of them girls that turned out to be full of shit. Well Bill Gates would have nothing on me…Except maybe a real fine haircut. Women seem to be caught up in the accoutrement, the accessory and pret-a-porte of the man they want around. They want to parade the man out and show him off and have him win a blue ribbon like some prize pony in a 4H show. And as for not being material…Uh huh…And I see women cruising the library and soup line all the time. It’s just the hottest meeting place ever.Women are petty and filled with a weird sense of entitlement. It’s kind of sad.
Now I know right about now you’re saying “Hey asshole that ain’t me! Or my friends, family and business associates” And to that I say BULLSHIT! It just is the truth, it is as it ever has been. Like the cavemen, the man needed to drag home the biggest bounty to mount the hottest cavewoman. I read Clan of the Cave Bear….I know man! I say this sort of as a joke but maybe it is the truth, maybe the wiring is done that way and it’s set in the circuits and veins. It’s how the animal is built.
But ain’t we suppose to be enlightened? Ain’t we suppose to be evolved?
I know there are exceptions. But really the fact is that these are few and far between. And they ain’t found hanging around coffee shops and martini bars trying to get the television poses just right and act like the perfect ensemble cast. The group that is just so refreshing and witty. Without having a clue you’re just sheep. Nah man, the real exceptions the true and fine hearts are lonely and lonesome. They spend too much time alone and too much time healing broken hearts because they’ve tried so god-damned hard to find that other one, the one that sees them, the one that values them and doesn’t have a grocery list or flag to wave. And they’re so sore that sometimes they are fooled by the kindness and soft words of wolves in sheep’s designer clothing. They believe in “Maybe this time…”
And they hurt for it, but they plug on. And in the rare case they find another of their kind. You don’t hear from them or even know them. You know why? Because they don’t need you, they don’t need me or anyone. They got each other and the world is just big enough for them. And at night when they curl up into each other and sleep, it’s the sleep of them that have traveled a long, long mile and finally found home.
Me? I don’t know what I am or where I fit. I do know that I have known girls who when they smiled at me I felt like I won something and I didn’t know what or how. And so whatever it was I did to make ’em smile like that I swore to remember because I always wanted to see it again. I’ve known women who are not typical anything. Different physically and different intellectually and emotionally. And I have loved them like mad. Like the last of the hardcore troubadours. But it has gone bad, either by my hand and my stupid lost little man trip. Or they turned out to be just like the rest. Just another off the rack and predictable life form. But mostly not. In fact I am fucking grateful. I have known and do know some incredible women. And I have had some incredible loves. They just seem to fall away. And it makes me sad. But I guess it’s just like any old cowboy…They sing a sad, sad song. And every rose…
Holy fuck! I am quoting Poison lyrics. It’s time to close this down. That’s a sign of brain damage you know. Quoting hair metal power-ballads. Maybe I am having an aneurysm?
Alright then, get my bandanna…I’m done.
1. Philosophy A movement consisting of varying but associated theories, originally developed by Charles S. Peirce and William James and distinguished by the doctrine that the meaning of an idea or a proposition lies in its observable practical consequences.
2. A practical, matter-of-fact way of approaching or assessing situations or of solving problems.
I have attempted to start this post a dozen times. I know what I want to say but feel so limited by my abilities. My language, my machine, my heart and even my talent to speak. I want to sound brilliant and grandiose. I want to say things that leave you gasping and trembling like a post-coital embrace or an after orgasm gasp and shudder. I want to shake your faith and belief. And make you love me. Want me. I want your women and your gold. I want to be Shiva. Burn your existence down and rebuild it in my likeness.
But doesn’t everyone?
See this is a transcendental place for me. I have changed much in these past months. I have come to your temples and found them empty. I have knelt before your Gods and found them absent. And I have listened to the light. After an eternity of darkness I heard the creaking and moaning of dawn. I know now there are truths that are mine. You need not have them. Hey man, Pontius Pilate asked Ol’ JC at his worse hour “What is truth?” I think a good answer would be “The things that make sense.”
See Ol’ Hoss, me, myself, I am a pragmatist. Don’t tell me you’re wounded until you can show me the blood. Don’t tell me it’s over until it’s done. Don’t do any of the huffing and puffing all them big bad wolves do until you bring down the house of stone. I figure that most people are just people, lives, biological reactions. Ejaculations and spittle. There’s very little to be called unique or real. And them that are, well baby they’re brilliant bright stars. And not a one of them knows it for sure, that there is beauty. The world is full of people who will tell you how lovely, hateful, smart, cute, coy, interesting, individual, non-homogeneous, talented, bright, important, sexy, lovable or holy they are. But here’s how the dice roll, if you have to tell someone you are something, then you are in fact none of it. I will swear by that wisdom and will teach my child that as a valuable lesson.
Here’s how it goes. He that is, does. That’s all, that’s it. Pretty clear if you ask me. I know this girl, she’s not much of anything really. But boy oh boy! Will she ever lay the heavy I am’s on you! And she acts it all out, the whole role. All the accessories and accouterments too. The slang, step and swing. And in truth she’s just a sad broken thing. I think of the Dylan song “Just Like A Woman” whenever I see her. She breaks like a little girl… And I know a fella who will bluster and puff up his chest and talk up the whole room. He will shift and unfurl at will. But the truth (the thing that makes sense) is that he’s just a scared boy. I almost want to say “Hey brother, put down the bullets and smoke. You will become if you give yourself half a chance.” Ah well.
And that’s the big thing, that’s how it swings. It seems people now-a-days shop for lives, personalities and attitudes in books, movies and records. They see what they like and then pull it off the rack and then Boom! They assume it. The clothes, the language, the manner. And they never try again to become. Until they tire or the trend changes or they get scared. Then they take off the old skin and grab a new one. Wearing it in just the right way.
So few people become. They never grow into their true flesh and scars. They never take the time to be birthed. Impatient and frightened they will not risk the time or wager the bet to say what they become will be something worth being, something they will want to be. And it takes a long time in some cases. SOme are born into their skin. They’re the best kind, they are so pretty, so touchable. But the ones who take time, they’re even more…Even more everything. They’re warm and whole like a blanket you want to be wrapped in. Even if it is just for a moment. They walked a long way to get here and they are worn and broken in just the right places….This passage of the Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams is exactly what I mean…
“”What is REAL?” asked the Rabbit one day, when they were lying side by side near the nursery fender, before Nana came to tidy the room. “Does it mean having things that buzz inside you and a stick-out handle?”
“Real isn’t how you are made,” said the Skin Horse. “It’s a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real.”
“Does it hurt?” asked the Rabbit.
“Sometimes,” said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. “When you are Real you don’t mind being hurt.”
“Does it happen all at once, like being wound up,” he asked, “or bit by bit?”
“It doesn’t happen all at once,” said the Skin Horse. “You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.”
See what I mean?
So what are you? What do you want to be? What really matters to you? Make something good. From a tiny acorn a great oak comes.
Me. I think after many years and many miles I am coming in to my place. I have love and there’s plenty more where that came from. I am coming to a place where I can lay it all down, my love, my sin and the sad boy who has spent an age ready to sleep but never at rest. I guess if I could say anything to that boy now I think it would be “Lay down boy, you’ve come so far and you can rest. I’ll carry the load now.”
*Written while listening to the brilliant album by Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds “No More Shall We Part”…So please excuse my verbosity!
I’ll post the other half of Too Bad later this week.
I have these things running around the machine, worms and wires. The animal is restless and anxious. Like a hunted thing. Tigers at the door Bukowski used to call it. The feeling that if I move too quickly, if I breathe too deeply, if I make a sound I’ll startle them and they’ll attack. And I have made that mistake before. My god how they can make pain. These things I hide from. The bleeding is just for effect. It’s the scars. The stitching of devoured skin and tissue. The screaming does nothing to ease it. It only makes them seem more satisfied. Like they’ve made you cry out and in that suffering they’ve won.
I thought about this fear, anxiety and the animal/machine much lately. It’s an old thing. Ancient. It was there when I was a child. I know that. I can remember standing with my ear pressed to doors. Listening for the sound, a warning, a growl or the ticking of a bomb. Something to tell me what might come. Because reading the smell wrong, misjudging a grimace for a smile meant bad things. Always aware. The tigers they were there. A little boy staring down the war beasts.
How the hell I made it this far sometimes amazes me. The numbing elixirs and potions. They weren’t excesses. They were survival techniques, a sort of spiritual and emotional triage.
The flying fists and the swinging and flailing limbs were not acts of violence. They were contact. Any contact. A savage expression of humanity. Of rage and hate. I didn’t know how to speak. So I made you do it for me. In moans and cries. In statements of disgust and spite.
These dark corners. I like them. I do in fact love them. Leave me alone for a bit and I’ll nest in them. I came out of them for some reason I’ve since forgotten. But on days such as this. I want so much to find my place in the blackness.
Here’s what I know. Most of you are cowards and light-weights. You talk a noisy game and pose real well. But when it’s time for battle you hide. Because it’s ugly, it’s hideous. It scars and takes parts you’re to selfish too lose. You are fascinated with the filth. But refuse to get any of it on you.
A few of you, a rare few are bold and brave. You’re just as fucking shell-shocked and crazy as I am.
I adore you but I cannot stand your company. We animal/machines do not run well in shared space.
Me, I’ll still tell you tales, bring back wounds and mementos and offer you ancient secrets. You’ll watch and lust and long for more.
But you’ll never see.
And tonight when you go to bed, get down on your knees and thank whatever thing you call God for that. Thank that God for not having the thoughts I do or the experiences. Thank that God that you can be ignorant.
It’s better that way.
Perhaps I should make this addendum to my last post. It sucked. It was snarky and childish. But it was adequate for what it said. The sentiment is still true. Except in hindsight I don’t really dig the way I said it. But I ain’t erasing shit. It stands. I mean hey…Even Billy Shakespeare had his off days, I can just imagine him saying “Verily doth the word before sucketh much, alack I have tainted mine quill with such verbosity. I shall prize open another keg of beer and try again for I have a yearning to speak.”…Hey man how do you think he got the inspiration for Falstaff (no I ain’t explaining the humor there, trust me. I made a funny!).
You know people always seem shocked that I am a fan of Shakespeare. And love his stuff. And I even have an active knowledge of his works….I almost named my daughter Cordelia…Damn right I am that cool!
Anyway here’s some stuff I have been thinking about.
The God thing. I’ll sort out. Really alot of my reaction is about dogma, rhetoric and unsurpassed stupidity. I don’t really give a fuck how we came to be, evolution, creationism, a celestial scratch and win ticket. And I don’t give a damn about your Rapture or you prophecy. Geez man, what makes you entitled to know what comes? If there will be an end it will come even if you have highlighted in 4 different colors all the doomsday prophesies you can find.
My loss in faith comes from the fact that right there in the middle of your holy book there is four books that talk about this great life. What he was really holds no relevance, if it does you may have missed the point. See this guy came and he was human, so human. He hurt, he wanted to give up, he got angry and he did what he thought was right. And all he said through it all is “Don’t put so much stock in what is here, but love each other. Make this trip easy for those around you and for God’s sakes people, stop being dicks!”
Unfortunately a club formed around the dude and they have lost the whole damned point. It’s like watching people starve to death while the cooks stand around arguing over the recipe.
Bah! I am a Jesus guy…You Christians can have the rest.
And I have been thinking about the things we say, in throes of passion, orgasm, love, need. Whatever your moment is.
When we promise. When we pledge and when we swear on our names, cross our heart and hope to die.
The promise of I’ll always be there, I will love you, you’ll never be alone no matter how far apart we are.
Then time comes and beats the drum and alone you both go. In that terrible lonely heartache. Does the promise still count? Are they still there? Do they see you and feel you when you lay alone and long for someone to speak, someone to soothe. Are they there in the broken heart they made?
Makes you wonder about the way we speak. Is it the rehearsed lines? Or the lust? But somehow we say these things we don’t keep.
Speaking of heartache.
I got this image of a dying God in my head. It was killed by the dagger and thrust of a broken heart. Here comes the confession. And I don’t know, maybe I am unique, but I have been so sad, so hurt and so lost after losing someone that I start talking to God, because when you’re that fucking spun ain’t no one want to be your friend. And talking to God it comes to making deals “Hey There God, listen if you bring her back I promise I’ll be good and I’ll do the things I’m suppose to” and she never comes back. Then you try to tip the deal, sweeten the holy pot I guess “Hey God, I’ll go to church an I’ll help poor folks and quit my rambling. Just make her call, make the phone ring and let her be sweet and soft again.” But the phone never rings. And you hurt more and the booze don’t cut it down and the numbness is not enough. So you try again “God, take this hurting”. And it never leaves, it gets into your bones and makes your crazy and punch-drunk.
So the idea of God himself starts to get pulled apart. thoughts about the possibility that if there is this loving God, he’d never leave you alone like that. If there was a God maybe he’d come back and tell you why it was the way it is.
The answer never comes.
You eventually grow out the hurt. But it still stings. You hide the hurt and move forward. And it only hurts on certain days of the year at certain hours of the day. Or maybe at certain intersections when you pass by and see the ghost standing there reminding you of what used to be.
You know this stuff all makes me sound so scattered and schizoid. But I am not. Honest Injun! I am nuts, I am at times spacey and I am the animal/machine. But I write this because….Well I don’t totally know. Maybe because I never have anyone around who speaks my language, maybe it’s because when I have tried to speak my truth you earthlings are either doubtful, scolding or without much understanding. I mean come on Bubba, you ever try to shoe horn in a conversation about the nature of love, sex, feathers and the nature of God when there’s talking about the weather and American Idol going on?
Sheesh…Where was I?
Never mind! What I mean is I want to fuck, fight, talk all night, get drunk, watch the world crumble around me, listen to a song that can make me cry, smell the perfume of a woman on my pillow. Someone (more than one) asked me recently “What are you looking for?” well maybe that’s it. To feel that alive again. To feel it all like I know it can be felt.
Is that too much to ask?
- I don’t care how you argue it. Working in an office or at a desk or even a cash register is never going to be as hard as working a manufacturing, semi-skilled job. I am a die caster. Which mean I make things with liquid metal which is run into dies (molds) and then hardened at a rapid rate. I take a bus to work and watch in the windows of a couple gyms I pass every morning a bunch of office folks doing exercise before work. I can’t imagine a guy like me ever doing that. Because it is so physically taxing and demanding that you keep your energy as much as possible till you start working. It’s hot, dirty and there is tons of exertion to be done. And here’s the greatest difference between my work and the desk, counter or office jockey…When you make a mistake you can re-enter, re-type or re-arrange things and correct it with maybe a little bit of heat from the boss. Me I make a mistake someone gets hurt, badly. And there is always a possibility of death. Not an exaggeration, just a fact. So next time you pass a guy or gal who looks like a factory drone or a manufacturing bum or if you maybe work in an office connected to them. Show some respect. They don’t make a lot and they work hard and deserve more than they get.
- Teenage girls frighten me. As the father of a little girl I mostly cringe when I see them. I guess the prospect of parenting one someday just scares the hell out of me. So when I do see a teenage girl with poise, esteem and intelligence I am fascinated and want to ask her parents how they tamed the crazy wild beast.
- A funny little story. I was on a bus this week and beside me were a woman and her little girl about my daughter’s age. When the bus came to a hard stop I reached out to brace the little girl out of habit. It was a little embarrassing and I apologized to the woman for doing it. She was reaching too. Apparently I have developed a parent’s reflexes without even realizing it.
- That woman, a woman in my building and a woman I bump into regularly have all made invitations to me. Two for dates and one for…Well never the less. Why is it when I am crazy and storm-tossed you women never want to know me from nothing. But as soon as I get my legs back and I can stand on my feet and I need nothing from you, that’s when you all come out of the woodwork. And it seems with a goal of knocking my legs out from under me again. I have come to the conclusion. You wimmins like the crazy. But only the crazy you make. A bit of ownership I suppose.
- Politics is for the stupid and misguided. Nothing but a revolution and a burning will ever make a difference. Your Facebook petitions and groups are effectless (Ha! I made that word up!), honestly if the government hears of them it’s through a PR firm at best. You can march all you want, the general heard and sheep don’t give a good goddamned what your marching for. The average person at home looks at the news pictures and footage and thinks ‘What are they whining about now?’ And legal process is so refined and set up to prevent confrontation that the concept of suing for change is ridiculous. As for voting for change, well I truly believe as Roger Daltry once bellowed boldly in the Who song “Won’t Get Fooled Again” and that is “Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.” and that politics is an industry built to keep itself in power and employed. No matter what color, what gender or what sexual orientation the face on your billboard. They are never going to truly represent you or your needs and desires. We need to burn our houses of politics down, rape their system and say whatever it is they don’t want us to. Even if as an individual I don’t agree with you I believe in your freedom to say it and live it. And that is exactly what your leaders don’t want. A free thinking society. Because questions are not compliance. So please, call me a pragmatist, but don’t ask me to sign your petition or join your online group. Because I am not interested in your posturing and your pretend acts of social awareness. Set a fire or get the fuck out, it’s cold in here and no one is doing the right thing.
- God and me are working out a deal. I’ll stay out of the deity business and he’ll stay out of the being Jeff business. And if we need a bit of help on either side of the creek well then paddle on over and we got us a helping hand. It works better this way.
- And now contrary to all this sometimes I think all I need is to get laid, get drunk and to break a nose. Because sometimes being more animal than machine is alright too.
- Why yes I am doing okay, thanks for asking…Now unless you got cash for me or maybe some crazy carnal adventure. Strand aside. I am building momentum and getting a rhythm. And you’ll just get hurt when I pull the blocks from the wheels and this machine gets to going.