“Pardon me, but…”

Does anyone remember that old Grey Poupon commercial where the two limos pull up to each other? The guy in one asks the guy in the other “pardon me, but do you have any Grey Poupon?” The second guy says “but of course,” and passes a jar of super fancy rich guy mustard to the first guy.

I was wondering as I tossed and turned in bed last night: Did the second guy ever get his Grey Poupon back? The red light couldn’t have lasted long enough for them to sit in traffic while the first guy spreads his precious mustard on whatever sandwich he was eating (probably caviar flavored with the tears of his employees that work full time and still need Food Stamps). Then again, I imagine that the guys in the two limos wouldn’t care if they were holding up traffic for others. Caring about others rarely makes you rich.

I think the Poupon is gone. That man drove off with another man’s mustard. Condiment robbery!! A jarring theft!! That kind of behavior does NOT cut the mustard!

Neither does this post. It earned the Turtle of Judgement.

Shelvin watching

doge in space card redux

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In Dreams…And Nightmares

The nightmares have started again.

If you don’t know, I have nightmares about my late fiance. I was there, completely helpless, when she died a horrible death. I relive it at night. It used to be every night and the day too in the first year after she died. The only thing that has kept the nightmares away is sleeping with someone next to me. But now the nightmares are finding a way through.

Combining that with waking up at 4am (because my brain demands it), means that I’m mentally exhausted all of the time. I also think that this new wake up time is caused by the numerous concussions I’ve received as a special ed teacher. I’ve developed Old Man Brain.

Things aren’t great here, but at least the sequel to The Watchmage of Old New York is coming out soon. BTW, it’s 99 cents right now. Pick it up. It’s worth your dollar and more.

Yes, that was a shameless plug, but man’s gotta eat…and sleep.

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A Quote From E.M. Forster

I recently read the essay “What I Believe,” by E.M. Forster, and one passage resonated powerfully with me. I’d like to share it with you. I put my favorite parts in bold:

I believe in aristocracy, though – if that is the right word, and
if a democrat may use it. Not an aristocracy of power, based upon 
rank and influence, but an aristocracy of the sensitive, the con- 
siderate and the plucky. Its members are to be found in all
nations and classes, and all through the ages, and there is a secret
understanding between them when they meet. They represent 
the true human tradition, the one permanent victory of our queer 
race over cruelty and chaos. Thousands of them perish in
obscurity, a few are great names. They are sensitive for others 
as well as for themselves, they are considerate without being 
fussy, their pluck is not swankiness but the power to endure, and 
they can take a joke. I give no examples – it is risky to do that – 
but the reader may as well consider whether this is the type of
person he would like to meet and to be, and whether (going
further with me) he would prefer that this type should not be an
ascetic one. I am against asceticism myself. I am with the old 
Scotsman who wanted less chastity and more delicacy. I do not
feel that my aristocrats are a real aristocracy if they thwart their
bodies, since bodies are the instruments through which we
register and enjoy the world. Still, I do not insist. This is not a 
major point. It is clearly possible to be sensitive, considerate and
plucky and yet be an ascetic too, and if anyone possesses the first
three qualities I will let him in! On they go – an invincible army, 
yet not a victorious one. The aristocrats, the elect, the chosen, 
the Best People – all the words that describe them are false, and
all attempts to organize them fail. Again and again Authority, 
seeing their value, has tried to net them and to utilize them as the 
Egyptian Priesthood or the Christian Church or the Chinese 
Civil Service or the Group Movement, or some other worthy 
stunt. But they slip through the net and are gone; when the door 
is shut, they are no longer in the room; their temple, as one of 
them remarked, is the holiness of the Heart’s affections, and their 
kingdom, though they never possess it, is the wide-open world.

I am not going to add my analysis, but I’d like you to think about this for a while and decide if you agree.

doge in space card redux

That Time I Drove Off A Sexual Harasser With My Dick…

This is a funny story, but not a joke. It really happened.

I was at a small pool party at my friend “K”‘s house. It was mostly girls, but a creepy guy that was K’s acquaintance from facebook was there. For most of the afternoon, he was creeping on the girls, flirting and asking inappropriate questions. Nothing so bad that he earned the door, but enough to be weird.

Night came, and everyone left until it was Me, K, and creeper. Now he goes into full harassment mode. He’s talking about how hot and fuckable K is, and then suggests that she go skinny dipping (not him or me, just K). K and I are both hippies and have skinnydipped together, so normally we would have no problem with it. But K was weirded out and asked me how to get rid of him without physically throwing him out.

So I walked up to him said, “that’s a great idea! I’ll go first.” He was sitting, I was standing. I strip down right in front of him, my dick maybe three feet from him.

“Okay dude, now it’s your turn.” I gave a little hip check, just enough to make things wiggle. I’ve rarely seen a face with that much fear and embarrassment on it.

And suddenly he changed his mind. Shocking, right? He left five minutes later. The perv so intent on seeing a naked woman wasn’t brave enough to put up, so he ran.

Predators are cowards. How weak do you have to be to be scared of genitals?

The moral: If you won’t do something yourself, don’t demand it of others.

It’s a dick move.

The Watchmage of Old New York: Only 99 cents for a short time only!

Watchmage black

doge in space card redux

You Can’t Save Everyone…

There is someone very important in my life who has been in a downward spiral for…well…for all of their life. They’ve always been…troubled, but it’s gotten worse. I’ve spent most of my life looking after this person and bailing them out when they get into trouble…which is always. And I am so messed in the head that I shouldn’t be looking after anyone. I can barely take care of Shelvin (my turtle, see the previous post).

Shelvin watching

I don’t know what to do anymore. I’m mentally exhausted, and they are only getting worse, more self-destructive, and potentially dangerous to others. We used to be so close, but now I only hear from the person if they need me to help them. Mostly I hear about them from their friends, who message me about how worried they are about the person.

And I want so bad to help the person, but they aggressively refuse all help and then blame you for not helping enough. I’ve seen, heard, and have been the recipient of it for 25 years. I’m not a babysitter.

And yet, I know that I’ll keep trying. You can’t save someone that doesn’t want to save themselves. But it’s a lesson I’ll never learn.

I suppose I don’t want to save myself either.

The Watchmage of Old New York: Only 99 cents for a short time only!

Watchmage black

Happy Adoption Day Shelvin

35 years ago when I was 6, I got a little Eastern Painted Turtle from the local pet shop in Co-op City (in the Bronx, where I lived until I was 10). That little turtle, Shelvin, has been my companion for 35 years. For 35 years I’ve watched over my friend. 35 years! Have you ever had a pet for 35 years? Can you even imagine it? I hardly remember a time where I didn’t hear him splashing around his tank. He’s a part of me. You might call him my familiar if you have a head for fantasy.

Shelvin watching

Shelvin’s old. 35 years is a long time for his species to live in captivity. Usually, they live for about 25 years. He doesn’t do much. He’s as picky an eater as a cat addicted to wet food. He won’t touch leafy greens or brine shrimp anymore, only his food pellets. But when you walk by his tank, he gets excited and pecks on the glass. He’s friendly for a turtle, but only because he knows that I’m the Great and Powerful Food Giver. Maybe I’m his pet.

I don’t know if today is his actual adoption day. I know that it was in April, and today is close enough. Happy adoption day, Shelvin. You’re kinda boring, but so am I. We go together.

I like turtles…

doge in space card redux

(Im)mortality

A guy that I knew from my childhood died on Friday.

We were not close. He was the older brother of my friend and two years older than me. When you’re six, two years is a canyon, practically adulthood.

When you’re forty-one, it’s a crack in the sidewalk.

I lost contact with my friend about twenty-five years ago, but I heard about the death through the grapevine. If I wasn’t for the hive mind of the internet, I would’ve never known.

Still, I sad for the family, but I’m also self-centered. “Oh my god, how did he die? Can this happen to me? I don’t want to die young, and he was my age! Ahhh! *starts doing cardio*

I don’t think I’m abnormal in this way. People are naturally self-centered. Usually, the first thing anyone asks after someone dies is “how did they die?”

Do people want to be immortal? I don’t, but I don’t want to die either, at least not for another forty years. In The Watchmage of Old New York (Just 99 cents for the Kindle copy or free with KU), the main character does not age, and he constantly suffers for it. He’s not quite part of society, and he grieves for all the loved ones that he had to watch die.

As someone that lost their fiance five years ago, I can tell you that the only thing more fearful than death is a loved one’s death.

So I grieve for the deceased and his family, but I can’t help grieving for myself. I know that it’s weakness, but part of strength is admitting your weaknesses. Shine a light on your darkness. Be self-aware.

But you can still fear the Reaper.

Watchmage black

doge in space card redux