Blackhumouristpress's Blog

June 4, 2013

Mr. Rumsfeld comes to Chicago

Chicago gave birth to a new mayor and we shall call him Emanuel (Matthew 1:23) Meaning God is with us in Hebrew. This new mayor, who was once the president’s chief of staff, took the reins of the city of Chicago and came to realize that within the city of Chicago, there was a war going on that he could not win; gang violence that was leaving more people dead in the city of Chicago than in Afghanistan.

After brain storming with numerous people who came up with various weak strategies, the idea came to Emanuel to contact Donald Rumsfeld. The same Rumsfeld that ran the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Rumsfeld came to the mayor’s office, had bourbon on the rocks and talked about some of the best restaurants he ever ate that were right in the city of Chicago. The question came up of Rumsfeld on a strategy to stop the murders in Chicago. Rumsfeld swirled his drink, smiled, squinted, paused and then spoke.

“Strategy is a general plan of action fashioned to achieve a major goal. It is the process by which goals are prioritized and resources marshaled to achieve those goals. Tactics are then used to implement the strategy. Strategy doesn’t begin at one point and end at another. It involves planning and evaluation, requiring trade-offs and decisions along the way. It takes work, thought, and time and then tactics.”
The mayor raised one eyebrow, smiled like the grinch who stole Christmas and asked what Rumsfeld about tactics. Rumsfeld, always elusive danced around the question.
“There are known knowns. These are things we know that we know. There are known unknowns. That is to say, there are things that we know we don’t know. But there are also unknown unknowns. There are things we don’t know we don’t know… Follow me? So if you follow a strategy, a true formulated strategy with a major goal in mind i.e. ridding Chicago of the current nemesis, you must be willing to deal from a position of strength and speak a language that can be understood and respected… My question to you is how willing are you to truly take this on?”
Rahm Emanuel allowed Donald Rumsfeld to turn closed Chicago Public schools into neighborhood detainment centers for questioning. After a drastic drop in murders, the mayor was interested in seeing for himself how the magic worked. The mayor and Rumsfeld sat behind a two-way mirror in what was once a neighborhood grade school and watched a pudgy man by the name of Sal who had a bushy moustache, smoked a cigar, conduct a questioning session.
“Sal was one of our best in the old days,” said Rumsfeld.

“Hey! Fucking look at me!”
Sal grabbed a young eighteen-year-old man by the shirt around the collars and pulled him towards him with the cigar puffing into the face of the young man. Sal then separated his fingers and open-handedly cracked the young man across the face.
“I will ask you again what you know about the murders that occurred on your street while you were on that street…”
“I don’t know shit… I ain’t saying shit and fuck you. Y’all ain’t let me sleep, it cold as fuck in here, you done let snakes out in this room and then they disappear, I pissed in my damn pants cause you got my hands tied up so I can’t get to my shit and then you keep playing that bullshit over and over. 555 and 666.”
The mayor chuckled and asked Rumsfeld about the song. It was the Heretic’s Anthem by Slipknot.
“I heard the song and a lot of it means nothing to me but the idea that we’re dealing with heresy and heretics sold me on using this song to try and induce the desired results. I think we’re close on this one.” Said Rumsfeld.

“So you ain’t got nothing to say?”
“I got this to say; fuck you, your cigar and yo fat white ass…”
“Okay… Time to go for a swim. You know how to swim? Every fat ass white boy knows how to swim. Let’s go swimming.”

The young man was bound securely to a bench, with his feet elevated. A cloth was placed over the forehead and eyes. Water was then poured on the cloth, and the cloth was lowered to cover his mouth and nose. 
 Breathing was then restricted for up to 40 seconds at a time; this caused an increase in carbon dioxide in the young man’s blood. It was designed to simulate suffocation and panic. This last tactic worked.
“Okay… I know who killed that dude. Imma tell you. Just take me out this water.”
Rumsfeld smiled, looked at the mayor who was stunned by what he just witnessed.
“And this is how it works. Wash, rinse and repeat if necessary. Just follow the instructions.”

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July 31, 2012

Rendezvous in Chicago

Filed under: Ethnicity,humor,Short Story — blackhumouristpress @ 10:25 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

Lena came from a small town you never heard of in the south of France.  For as much as most French seem to look down at the United States, Lena was quite taken in by the pop culture, brashness and general oblivious naivety of believing that Americans believe they are the smartest, trendiest and most free in the world.  Americans to most French, were like that middle of the road, slightly above average looking woman at a party that truly believes she is the hottest thing in the world and believes that everyone wants to be with her or emulate her.  Lena loved Americana.
            Lena decided upon Chicago to spend her time in the states primarily because her admiration of Ernest Hemingway and Frank Lloyd Wright who both lived in the village of Oak Park, some six miles west of the center of downtown Chicago. 
            Lena ate hot dogs with all sorts of foreign things on it and ate foie gras and sipped white wine in the bleachers at Wrigley Field as she tried to speak English to two fat former frat boys that identified themselves as former University of Notre Dame students.  One of the fat Americans had a tattoo of the fighting Irish symbol on his chubby arm that resembled a leg.  They bought her a beer and jokingly told her how much they appreciate French fries.
            Lena listened to Jazz and Blues.  She did tours and visited museums that had better French impressionist art than they had in France.  It was on a Sunday that Lena decided to take the green line from downtown Chicago, through the heart of darkness which is Chicago’s west side.
Chicago’s west side is about as third world as you might find in North America.  There are no grocery, department or drug stores between Ashland Avenue and Austin along the green line that follows Lake Street from west to east.  Lena watched black people, Americans of African descent and thought about the suburbs of Paris where Africans rioted and trashed their own neighborhoods.  A white far right Jean Le Pen follower who was a police commander, insulted the African immigrants on a bullhorn by refusing to address black men with the polite “vous” form used among adults in France and used “tu”.  Tu would be used for children or someone you are really familiar with, not to be used with angry, unemployed Africans by a white cop.  Cars burned and businesses were looted.  The west side of Chicago resembled the Paris suburbs to Lena.
 Zombie looking street walkers with missing teeth and track marks,  hooking up with suburban white men in Volvo station wagons with stick figure decals of a husband, wife, two children and a dog, holding hands.  Black men filed in and out of liquor stores tucked in between store front Baptist churches and barber shops.  Lena was startled by a middle aged black man who plopped himself down in the seat next to her.
            “Look miss…  I was jus let out of a half way house not far from here, see this is the picture of where I was.  I am jus looking for some change to help me git a meal.  Y’all could be a really good American by giving jus a little bit to help me git by.”
            Roger sat in a seat near by wearing large framed glasses with a .44 magnum tucked into his belt line.  Roger loved movies like Walking Tall and Taxi Driver.  His bald head was white and shiny and he glared at the panhandler who was shaking the attractive young white woman down for pocket change.  Roger spent all of his free time preparing for the apocalypse or a coup d’etat against the first black president in the United States.  Being 100% disability from inhaling burning oil in Kuwait, Roger spent his days lifting weights, taking target practice and practicing martial arts.  Roger lived alone in an apartment in Oak Park and rode the trains waiting for a chance to intervene between a robber and a rider.  Roger saw his chance.
            “This is a .44 Magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world, and would blow your head clean off, you’ve got to ask yourself one question: Do I feel lucky? Well, do ya, punk?”
         Leviticus Jones looked at the man wearing a trench coat, pointing a hand gun at his head and didn’t worry much about the prospect of dying.  Life on earth had been hell for Leviticus so the afterlife couldn’t be all that much worse.
         “Bitch…  I will take that mutha fucking toy out yo crazy white hands and stick it up yo ass.  Keep pointing that shit at me and see what happen to yo crazy shit, motherfucker…  Ma’am, scuze my French.  I am a good Christian man but when push come to mutha fucking shove, this nigga ain’t bout to turn no other cheek.  Do unto others befoh they crazy ass do the shit to you.  That in Proverbs or some shit like it…  This yo last chance to pull that gun way from my heed.”
         Leviticus sprung to his feet and grabbed the barrel of the gun before Roger could discharge it.  The two men rolled around with a loaded gun.  It was just like in the movies.  One bullet went through a window and another ripped a hole through the wall the size of a golf ball before a black woman pushed the emergency button to alert the conductor of a problem.  The conductor walked up and grabbed the gun from the two struggling men.  He threw the black man off of the train and said nothing to the white man.  The black woman who pushed the emergency button questioned the conductor.  The conductor looked bored and bothered.
         “You throw a man off who was accosted by this here man off the train with out calling the po-lice?  Foh yo information, this here man pulled the gun.  You black as night jus like me, jus like the man you done thrown off the train an you assume some brother pulled the gun…  Shame on you.  Shame on you foh jumping to conclusions and shame on you foh not calling the po-lice.  This man, this white man here is the damn criminal.”
         Roger walked into the next car and then opened the door and escaped.  Lena was visibly shaking and crying at the display of Americana that Europeans hear about; racial incidents involving guns.  Lena asked the people on the car to hug her.
         “I need one of you to jus hug me…  Please… Anyone?”
         The angry black woman, a quartet of gay men, a Filipino au pair and a young white male college student, all ignored Lena’s plea.  A young black man who had just worked ten hours cutting vegetables at a five star restaurant and was looking forward to seeing his young daughter and wife stood and embraced Lena.  Nothing was said.  Lena grasped the stranger’s shoulder and cried.  The young man in a white chef’s coat, sat holding Lena until she exited at Oak Park Avenue, walked north towards Hemingway’s childhood home.  Lena thought about the song from Westside Story and began to sing.
         “I want to live in America, everything is good in America.”

June 2, 2012

Nato Torturers- Happy Talk

Happy talk, keep talking happy talk,

Talk about things you’d like to do,

You gotta have a dream, if you don’t have a dream,

How you gonna have a dream come true?

The happy, syrupy, musical song from the movie, South Pacific played loudly through speakers in a stainless steel room.  Russell sat naked and shackled to chains on the wall.  The lights cut out and suddenly fire hose force jets of cold water ripped at Russell’s skin.  Water filled his ears, went up his nose and caused immense pain to his testicles.  The dousing lasted thirty seconds followed by a drop in temperature within the room to a crisp 45 degrees with giant fans from the ceiling that sounded like a World War II propeller plane.   The cold temperatures and high wind, made it difficult for Russell to catch his breath. The music suddenly stopped, as did the fan.  The lights, as bright as the sun went on and standing with their heads cocked towards one another as they studied Russell was Phil and Andy.  Phil was a giant of a man with broad shoulders who wore a white lab coat splattered with blood.  He wore a Hilary Clinton mask over his face.  Andy, a legal midget wore a white lab coat also stained with blood and a Mexican wrestling mask over his face.  The music resumed loudly as Andy used a remote control switch to elevate Russell to Phil’s eye level.  The chains that held Russell suddenly tightened so that his back was plastered against the wall.

Talk about a moon floating in de sky looking like a lily on a lake,

Talk about a bird learning how to fly making all the music he can make

Happy talk, keep talking’ happy talk, talk about things you’d like to do,

You gotta have a dream, if you don’t have a dream, how you gonna have a dream come true?

Andy took a bat used to play cricket and smashed the bottoms of Russell’s feet.  Russell screamed about his civil rights and rights as a human.  Phil took a feces stained washcloth and stuffed it into the mouth of the career protester.  Russell gagged and shook his head in an attempt to get the washcloth out of his mouth.  Phil took duct tape and ensured that the rag would remain in Russell’s mouth.  Russell was then lowered so that his head could be placed into a tub of water.  Phil held Russell’s head in the tub for about twenty seconds as electric contacts that were attached to Russell’s finger tips, suddenly carried a current from the bike that Andy pedaled furiously.  It was a 1970 gold Schwinn with a banana seat and blue poms that hung from each side of the handlebars.  With each revolution of the pedals, a current ran from a car battery and caused a painful shock.  Russell, whose head was underwater when the initial shock took place, gasped for air while his head was underwater.  Before Russell could drown in twelve inches of water, Phil pulled the choking Russell out of the water and into a plastic bag.  Russell went from immense pain to complete panic for close to thirty minutes while the song, Happy Talk played over and over.  The Asian woman with an accent sang about dreams and happiness, the moon, the stars and birds while Russell nearly passed out from the torture.

Talk about a star looking like a toy, peeking through de branches of a tree,

Talk about a girl, talk about a boy, counting all de ripples on de sea

Happy talk, keep talking happy talk,

Talk about things you’d like to do

You gotta have a dream, if you don’t have a dream, How you gonna have a dream come true?

Russell’s head was covered in a dark pillowcase as he was transported and dumped in a park near Lake Michigan in Chicago.  Russell cried and whimpered as other protesters untied him and asked what happened.  Across town at an all night diner, Phil had a steak with eggs while Andy ate oatmeal and read the paper.

“How bout that, Phil…  The paper says that the city of Detroit is a safer place to be this week than the city of Chicago.  The article says we can expect about 10,000 protesters.” Said Andy.

“Well Andy…  You know what God said in Genesis 18 about the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah?  God said, “If you can find fifty good people there, I won’t destroy the city.” Said Phil.

Andy took a sip of his coffee and looked out of the window at a group of unwashed kids passing out literature to disinterested people walking by.

“Hmmm.  Well maybe we should get the hell out of here and go to Detroit.  I don’t want to be here when god decides to torch this town.  It happened once, it could happen again.”

“Amen, little buddy, amen…”

May 5, 2012

Hey Mickey!

 

“Look at fucking Bernice.  You’re a fucking wizard at video games, aren’t you, Bernice?”

Mickey stood next to Bernie as he played a video game and nervously stared straight ahead at the screen.  One of the rockets got hit by fire and ended the game.  Bernie and his friend Saul tried to step away from the group that surrounded them but was unable to move.  Judas Priest blared through out the game room, which was full of teenage boys playing video games.  Mickey flicked Bernie behind the ear and then poked the Chicago Cubs logo on his baseball shirt.

“Bernice…  It’s fucking winter.  Don’t wear fucking white painter’s pants and a Cubs shirt when it’s snowing outside.  You know what?  You and your fucking girlfriend come outside for a moment.”

“We’re not leaving, Mickey,” said Bernie.

Martha, who was hanging on Mickey’s shoulder, laughed and weakly tried to persuade Mickey to just leave the two smaller boys alone.  She was enjoying the hazing.  Bullying is always a bit more funny when one is high and in a group of three or more.  Mickey and Martha were there with two friends Mathew and Mark.  In fact Mathew and Mark were sort of disciples of Mickey.  Mickey was the captain of the hockey team and his father was the coach.  Mickey’s father had a job lined up for Mickey, driving a beer truck just as soon as he graduated from high school.

Mickey, Martha and the disciples had just come from Mark’s basement where they took turns toking on a bong, listening to Rush.  They all became famished and went to eat hot dogs and cheese fries at a Greek fast food restaurant.  Mickey noticed Bernie and Saul through the window of the game room next door and decided that they would torment the two Jewish boys because they were Jewish, nerdy, small, timid and rich.

“Them fucking Jews run the world.  It’s a conspiracy.  You show me one poor Jew.  Bankers, lawyers, doctors, jewelers.  The name Jew is in Jewelry.  The old Jew who owns the liquor distribution company my old man works for, never leaves Miami.  He gets a big fat check each month and guys like my old man, run around making him rich.”

Mickey heard his father’s anti-Semitic rants over the years from his recliner, wearing a tank top, holding a beer after work from the time he could retain what he was hearing until he grew up and moved out of the house. Mickey grew up believing kids like Bernie and Saul were privileged and for that reason, teasing, bullying and terrorizing Jewish kids, was warranted.

“You two kikes strip down to your fucking underwear.  Leave that Cubs shirt over here next to those pants and you two Woody Allen looking motherfuckers…  Now get the fuck out of my site or I’ll tell the Nazis you were here.”

Bernie and Saul stripped down to their underwear and ran across the parking lot in their boots and white underwear and disappeared into the night.  Mickey went back to Martha’s house and had sex with her three times after getting high again while her parents obliviously slept.  Life in 1982 was great for Mickey and Martha.

 

Oh, Mickey, what a pity You don’t understand You take me by the heart When you take me by the hand Oh, Mickey, you’re so pretty Can’t you understand It’s guys like you, Mickey Oh, what you do, Mickey, do, Mickey Don’t break my heart, Mickey

Hey, Mickey

 

 

 

Bernard showed up at the door of a dilapidated home with weeds knee high in the front yard.  He pounded loudly on the door of the home with his bodyguard standing beside him.  Mickey answered the door in a stained white T-shirt that read Pabst Blue Ribbon.  He came to the door in a pair of underwear with rust stains near the side to where his cock pulled towards.  Mickey strained to adjust his eyes to the sunlight as he looked at two unfamiliar men who stood with suits on at the front steps.

“Hiya, Mick…  you mind if I come in? You really shouldn’t mind because I just purchased this fucking palace for back taxes.  It’s my home now and you and your family are now squatters.”

Mickey, who had been hounded by creditors regularly, tried to slam the door on Bernard and his large bald man.  Bernard’s bodyguard stopped the door from closing.  The two men forced their way into the living room and sat down on the couch.

“Let see, Mick.  You got laid off as an assistant deliveryman due to the fact that you lost your license for drunk driving, correct?  Look at this fucking hillbilly palace…  you probably got live coons living under the couches here, feeding on pizza crust that fell between the cushions.  Let me guess…  You married the beautiful Martha and spawned these inbred looking monsters I see wandering from room to room here.  They’re probably smoking your weed and watching goats fuck blond chicks on the internet while jacking off while you catch up on sleep on this here couch that smells like something the cat wouldn’t dare piss on.  It has been many years, Mick.  I’m in the driver’s seat now, you pathetic piece of shit…  You probably never knew this back in high school but karma has no expiration date. Now, I need to know when you’re moving or paying me rent.  I don’t care if you don’t have a job.  I own a Subway franchise.  You will work arm and arm with the Indians I have making more sandwiches in a day than you could shake a fucking stick at…  Practice asking if they want mustard on their sandwich.  You will fucking pay me rent or my associate here who is a war criminal from the Yugoslav War, will make your life less worth living than it currently is.  Now, if you decide you will not carry your end of the bargain, life will get a whole lot worse for you than it is now…  Oh and the rent just went up.  You can thank the president for that one.  Yes we can raise the rent.  Yes we can put your ass on the street.  Yes we can force you outside in your nut stained underwear if you’re not really fucking careful.  You thought you hated Jews back in the day?  Well now you really got a reason, my friend.”

Martha came into the room smoking a cigarette, with a T-shirt that said, “I’m sexy and I know it.”  Her breasts were at half-mast and it appeared as though her ass had deflated.  In a husky smoker’s voice, she smiled, cleared her throat and calmly posed a question to Bernard.

“Bernice…  Can’t we somehow work this whole thing out?”

At a well to-do nightclub in downtown Chicago near the large hotels that house conventioneers and businessman, Mickey dressed in black pants, white shirt and bow tie.  Mickey’s job was to hand paper towels to patrons in the men’s bathroom that had just relieved themselves before returning back to dance and drink.  A large patron among some very large people in these United States sat with his pants around his ankles in a stall and called out for help, unable to help himself up as he gasped for air and sweated profusely.  Mickey caught a glimpse of himself in the mirror helping the morbidly obese Jewish man with a yarmulke on his head, pull up his pants. Mickey was nauseated by the fresh scent of shit that had not been flushed away into the abyss.  Mickey could almost taste the breath of the large man who was sweating and panting as they both struggled to pull the man’s pants up and help him to his feet. The winded man asked Mickey his name as he stuffed a one-dollar bill into his shirt pocket condescendingly.

The obese man then recalled the old 1980’s syrupy; bubble gum hit by a woman named Toni Basil and began to serenade Mickey.

Hey, Mickey

Now when you take me by the hooves Who’s ever gonna know And every time you move I let a little more show, There’s something you can use so don’t say no, Mickey

February 29, 2012

Amigos in America

 

            The Ortega’s, no relation to Daniel Ortega of Nicaragua at least none that any of them know, came from a small town in Mexico.  The town that the Ortega’s come from in Mexico is not one that American vacationers would flock to overeat, over drink and generally over indulge in.  After the birth of his third child, Ronaldo Reagan Ortega, Javier packed up his family and crossed the Rio Grande and made his way up to the city of Chicago.

 The idea to move to the United States came to Javier when his wife gave birth to a sandy haired blue eyed boy that he named after the United States President that he admired so much.  Javier thought that it was fantastic that a man, who made pretty bad movies, could go on to be a governor of a state and then become president of one of the wealthiest and most powerful countries in the world.  Way back in Javier’s ancestry, there was blond haired, blue eyed German man who was his great-great grandfather who had immigrated to Mexico.  Javier took the recessive trait that surfaced in his son as a sign from god- go live with the white people in America.

Javier washed cars, drove trucks and cleaned tables as an undocumented illegal alien.  He did an outstanding job of saving money to help his children as they got older.  There was Socorro who was tall and thin with straight and long jet black hair with high cheek bones.  Socorro was the eldest and the rebel among the three children. Socorro had moved to Los Angeles and married a Low-rider gangster who gave up gangbanging to customize classic cars for other Low- riders.  Socorro had two children and lived in a small house not far from LAX airport in Los Angeles.  Nina was the middle child who was quiet and always there to help family at all times.  Nina bought a home with her husband in Chicago and moved her parents in with them.

Ronaldo was handsome and fair skinned.  He resembled those European actors in the  Spanish speaking novellas and had the ability to blend in with Anglo looking people without a second look.  Ronaldo was an outstanding student that finished medical school, became a citizen of the United States and had a birthday all in the same month. 

Ronaldo had a girlfriend named Jennifer who was a complete physical package in the eyes of most men.  She was pretty on an athletic frame with a nice set of breasts and perky posterior.  Jennifer was high maintenance among women who are considered high maintenance.  Jennifer had to have all the passwords to Ronaldo’s emails, Facebook account and cell phone.  Jennifer chose all of Ronaldo’s clothes, told him where to go to medical school, what car to buy.  Slowly over time, all of Ronaldo’s childhood friends were slowly phased out and those with money and title moved in to become Ronaldo’s newly sanitized friends.  Ronaldo’s family said very little about their concern that Jennifer, a rich sheltered woman was reinventing the pliable Ronaldo into something that was not Latino.  The family’s fear was that they were going to lose their brother and son.

Jennifer rented a coach bus to take Ronaldo on a tour of his thirty favorite places in Chicago with his newly adopted friends.  Jennifer had planned on renting out a banquet hall for the celebration of becoming a citizen, a doctor and having his thirtieth birthday.  Ronaldo asked Jennifer to have the party at the culmination of the six hour tour on the coach bus at his sister Nina’s house so that he could see his family for his birthday.

Nina and their parents didn’t feel slighted that Jennifer did not invite them to go along on the coach bus to tour places that she felt were Ronaldo’s favorite places.  Socorro had driven in with her husband for the celebration in a sharp 1964 Chevrolet Impala that was lowered three inches from the ground and painted a sparkly red color with spoke wheels and a hand painted sign on the back window that said, “Chavo Y Socorro”.  Socorro voiced her displeasure about Jennifer’s controlling nature to her parents and sister but promised to hold her tongue.

At a few minutes after six in the evening.  Thirty loud, drunk people filed out of the coach bus and into the home on Nina.  The crowd was mostly white and well to do.  The new friends of Ronaldo devoured all the food and drank more alcohol.  They were drunk, loud and obnoxious.  Nina, Socorro and their parents looked out of place in their own home among the partying people.  Jennifer, who was wearing a tight black dress, climbed on top of a coffee table in the living room and banged a spoon against her beer bottle until everyone stopped talking and listened to her.  Jennifer sucked in her quivering lips and put her right hand against her chest.  She began to cry as she gave her dedication speech to the entire room.

“I just want to say that I am so proud of the love of my life Ronaldo who has come so far from where he was to where he is now.  From a little town that nobody ever heard of in Mexico to become an American citizen just like all of us.  Very soon Ronaldo will do his residency at Children’s Hospital here in Chicago.  I want to thank all of you for being here to celebrate a special time for both Ronaldo and I…  I really love you all so very much…”

The crowd cheered and chanted Ronaldo’s name.  Friends raised shot glasses and bottles of Mexican beer.  The room had the feel of a frat party that was about to get out of hand.  Drunken urban professionals showed up at Nina’s home to eat and drink more.  Socorro could no longer hold back.  Socorro stood up on her chair and banged a fork against a bottle of beer.  A few men whistled as the shapely woman with blue eye liner stood up to say a few words to the group of friends.

“I want my brother to know that his family has always been proud of him and have always known he is special.  He is special not because he looks like Europeans but because he has a good heart.  I hope as he enters and is accepted into the world of Caucasian people, that he always remembers that little town he was from in Mexico that I have heard of as has my sister and my parents.  I hope my brother keeps in mind to be American does not mean to not be Mexican.  I hope my brother remembers that while blacks were once sent to the back of the bus in favor of white people during this black history month, Mexicans today weren’t invited or even allowed on the bus.  I hope you all enjoyed the authentic Mexican food you ate today and will be considerate and clean up your mess before you leave because these Mexicans who live here are not servants or busboys today.  I hope you all keep in mind when you leave here and are safely back in your safe suburbs among all the people who look just like you…  The day is coming when you will all have to recognize that we are here, we are growing and we are not going anywhere.  Every time you see a nice front lawn, every time you eat at a restaurant, think about the people who make that possible…  Think about that when you’re drinking your Coronas on Cinco de Mayo and think about that now that you’ve adopted my blue eyed brother as one of your own…  I ask you all to raise your glasses and repeat after me…  Viva Mexico, putas.”

And they lived happily ever after.  Separately.

February 15, 2012

The Day You Passed Away

Filed under: humor,Short Story — blackhumouristpress @ 7:06 am
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Jasper opened his eyes to find himself in his childhood bedroom.  He looked at the blinds that let rays of light filter in through the slats.  He sat up and studied himself in the mirror; a thin figure with acne and long, wavy, brown hair.  Jasper slipped on a T shirt and walked down to the kitchen.  A tinny voice spoke about the state of emergency in South Africa through a small radio on the kitchen counter.  Jasper looked out of the kitchen window and noticed a table full of people in what would have been the backyard that was nothing more than a large field that went as far as the eye could see.  It was a giant picnic table that seemed to stretch to the horizon.  At the table were people seated on both sides.  A warm breeze gently made the high grass bend lazily.  Two of Jasper’s childhood dogs ran up to greet him followed by his grandmother who kissed him and held him so tightly that it was hard to breathe.

“We’ve been here for some time now and we had gotten word that you might be coming home today…  We just weren’t sure when…  Come say hello to granddaddy.  He’s over there talking to General Patton.”

General Patton wore his helmet and had four stars on each side of his collar.  Over his left breast were several military pins.  George was petting the dogs and discussing World War I and II with Jasper’s great-grandfather who had served in Belgium during World War I.

“I proclaimed many things and you have to be bold when you’re a four star general.  People want to know if you’re brave or flapping in the breeze like a surrender flag…  That’s all fine and well.  When I got to Lorraine region of France, I made a bold declaration.  I told the medical corps that there will be no more VD and there wasn’t.  You can imagine all the wounded and dying and we have medics trying to cure The Clap…  I put an end to that nonsense…  Well then, there he is, the man of the hour.  Your granddad says you were an outstanding young man and would have joined the military had it not been for something called Punk Rock.  Each generation has something that would lead the previous generations to want to slap the shit out of those that followed.  We call them descendants but we really don’t wish that they descend into the mire after us.  You understand?  Bismarck might have gave me a good crack and possibly Peter the Great might have backhanded him.  I don’t know if you have kids but kids have a tendency to let their parents down.  I have had very little in the way of poor reports on you, kid…  Nice to have made your acquaintance.  If you have ever wondered what you can do forever, you have the chance to meet and talk to anyone you want.  Just the other day, I was talking to a guy named John Lennon. A nice English fellow. It took a good half hour before I realized that he was no relation to the Russian Lenin.  Some here say that his music was quite popular but probably not my cup of meat.”

Jasper furrowed his brow and looked around at people he knew and didn’t know.  Jasper’s cousin Sheila came jogging up in a pair of shorts and a spaghetti strap top.  She had a smile as wide as one could manage.  She hugged Jasper hard.  Sheila smelled of Babysoft and Clairol Herbalessence shampoo from the late 1970’s and early 1980’s.

“Dude!  So good to see you.  I heard you were coming and I had to make sure I was here to meet you.  It’s so good to see you again. We just got word that Whitney Houston is on her way here today…  Hey!  You remember when we traveled from L.A. to Denver in your little Fiat?  We had to pretend to be married cause none of those yokels would rent us a room thinking we were just teenagers out to fool around for the night.  Remember?  I wrapped my arm around you and convinced that old woman at the Bates looking motel that you and I were newly weds and that you didn’t have the money to buy me a ring.  We slept in the same bed and I warned you not to touch me…  Do you remember?”

Sheila still had both her arms wrapped around Jasper at the waist as she studied his face.  Sheila was young and vibrant.  The wind blew her reddish brown hair over her face.  A few strands stuck to her lips.  Sheila was still smiling.  She put her head against Jasper’s chest and hugged him tight.  The thought suddenly came to Jasper that he had not seen his cousin in 27 years and the last time he saw her was during the trip from Los Angeles to Denver.  Their Uncle Butch had just called Jasper not long ago to report that Sheila had taken a gun and shot herself in the head while taking a shower.  She left behind a few children and a husband.  Butch had told Jasper that Sheila had become depressed and obese.  Jasper felt badly that he had never connected again with his cousin that meant something to him at a time when life had changed from youth and had taken a distinct path towards adulthood on the road from Los Angeles to Denver.

“Butch called me not long ago…  I had heard from him about you…”

Sheila closed her eyes and put her index finger across Jasper’s lips.  She put her hands on Jasper’s cheeks and held his head still as she spoke to him with serious but playful eyes.

“You decided to leave Los Angeles for Chicago at a wedding when we were 18 years old.  You told me that you were going to go to college and stop chasing the dream to be a musician…  We didn’t know it then but that was the pinnacle of our youth and the dividing line between what was and what was going to be…  You were a big James Dean fan and you even said as we drove in your Fiat Spider with the top down, that Jimmy went out when he was on top and that you couldn’t see yourself playing bingo and cutting coupons one day.”

James Dean walked up with his blondish brown hair ruffled in the front.  He wore a plain white T shirt, faded jeans and a pair of boots.  He smiled, showing a dimple on one side of his cheek.  He held a red coat over his right shoulder.

“Sheila tells me that you drove from Chicago to Fairmont, Indiana to find where I lived…  That’s a little kookie, kid.  You remind me of Sal Mineo a little bit; two nervous guys.  Just so you know; Indiana is everywhere and nowhere all at the same.  You don’t believe me, ask Kurt Vonnegut.  He’s over there talking to someone called H.L. Mencken.”

The whole thing began to make sense to Jasper.  Tears began to stream down his cheek.  Sheila hugged him and wiped away the tears.  She asked why he was upset.

“I’m either having a very descriptive dream or I’m dead and if I’m dead, it’s unfair that I had so much I wanted and needed to do and didn’t get a chance to finish it.  I couldn’t even tell my wife and kids that I love them and that despite the fact that I’m always so busy, I really do love them more than life itself…  I remember driving home from work and that it was my last day.  I had to go home to tell my wife that my job had been eliminated.  I had to tell her that I hadn’t been paying the mortgage on a home that we owned for ten years and that any day we could be evicted.  I needed to tell her that the college money we saved for our daughter was squandered on bad investments and then I open my eyes and I’m laying in my old bed from when I was kid. I’m skinny, with acne and a lot of hair.  If I’m dreaming, I want it to end now so that I can sort out the shit I got myself into…  Sheila, promise you’ll stay with me for a while til I figure this all out.”

“I’m holding your hand and will til we figure this all out…”

At a suburban Chicago hospital, Jasper laid on a bed.  His two children stood nearby answering text messages as his wife held his lifeless hand.  A young doctor, who hadn’t been on call when Jasper was rushed into the emergency room, read the chart of the man who had a stroke and appeared to be having no brain activity.  The young doctor was thinking about his vacation to Aruba that would begin at 4am with a plane ride to Miami and then off to the island.  The sad wives and stunned adult children scenario was common place.  Dr. Brown felt very little empathy but had learned early on to speak in sympathetic tones.  His recommendation was to pull the plug because the 48 year old Jasper would never be what he once was.  The family sobbed and wailed for a good hour or so.  They touched their husband and father who meant something to them.  There would be a visitation and service, he would be buried and then the realization would set in a few days later, that he was truly gone and that one day they would each take their turn.

Whitney Houston walked up in a full length gown looking young and elegant.  She smiled a confused smile.  People that neither Jasper, Sheila nor George Patton knew, came to greet Whitney.  Sheila walked with Jasper along the table that was taken up by guests.  Jasper asked where they were going.  Sheila kissed her cousin on the cheek and clasped his hand in hers.

“Believe this or not…  As big as this table is, there is a spot for you and I.  We are going to find it…”

Dedicated to my cousin Sheila and all of those who once lived.

July 19, 2011

Ali/Babar and the Wife Thief

Filed under: Detroit,Ethnicity,humor,Oprah,Short Story,walmart — blackhumouristpress @ 5:15 pm
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Ali was born a full six minutes ahead of his twin brother Babar.  Mother decided that her boys would be A and B and so it was.  A and B’s father decided when they were young that there was a land of great opportunity and diversity where immigrants were accepted and could find work, this land was Canada of course.

            Ali and Babar were as identical as identical could be.  Their parents could only tell them apart as infants and toddlers by a small birthmark on Ali’s left butt cheek.  As time went on, Ali was the quiet, thoughtful and a methodical young boy that would construct buildings with Lego’s and Babar was the loud, busy child that would deconstruct things his brother created.  As time went on, Babar suspected that his parents favored his twin brother at every turn in the road.  When it came to time to find them each a wife, Babar was convinced his parents held Ali in higher esteem.  Babar was matched up with a woman nearly the same height as him who carried more than a few extra pounds who had to shave the hair on her rotund stomach.  She wheezed, chortled and drooled in her sleep and always smelled like salami.  His wife’s mother had accompanied her only child to Canada fromPakistan and so Babar had a package deal that he did not care for on top of all the quirks.

            Ali went to Queen’s University in Kingston,Ontario and landed a job with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.  Babar often joked with his brother that he wanted to come toOttawato see his brother on a strong black horse, dressed in a red suit.  Ali was not offended.  Ali’s wife had been a runner-up in the Miss Pakistani World contest in Mississauga,Ontario and was beautiful among beautiful women.  Babar was upset that his brother had a good government job and a hot wife who maintained her shapely physique despite having two children, while his wife appeared to have swallowed furniture after having just one child.

            Babar actually loved the freedom of being a cab driver.  Like most Canadian boys, Babar was hockey crazy.  Babar loved watching the sport and playing it.  Babar kept his goalie equipment in the trunk of his cab and would not take customers who needed the trunk for suitcases.  Babar played shinny and league games all overTorontoand in nice weather, he could be found playing cricket at a park here or there.  Having a smaller home and less prestigious job was the trade off for Babar who loved the freedom to do what he wanted at anytime.  Babar could live with all that.  Having a less desirable wife than his brother was something that was hard to absorb and after close to seven years of marriage, the reality that his wife was plain and heavy and his brother’s wife was stunningly pretty and fit, still was something that overtly bothered Babar.

            Babar was more Canadian than he was Muslim or Pakistani and so it came as a surprise to Babar’s extended family when he had made the announcement that he was going back toPakistanto become a better Muslim than he had been up to that point.  Babar made friends inPakistanand grew to hate the Americans like the rest of the world.  A persuasive older man had convinced Babar that he was the best candidate to go to Afghanistan to train to be a terrorist.  It sounded like a good idea at the time.  Train to do god’s work of stopping infidels who occupy the land of Allah and his messenger Mohammed. 

            Babar got into the best shape of his life running around in a part of the world that looked more like the moon.  Babar was sent back toPakistan and ordered to wait in a hotel room.  Three men picked up Babar and covered his head, whisked him away in a hot van to a room without windows where an intense older man with a beard, instructed Babar in English what it was that he had to do.

            “Have you been to Chicago in the United States, my brother?”

            “No sir, but it has an attractive lake front with a food festival in the summer that would be worth checking out if I had a week or so to spend away from home…”

            “Yes…  Well that can be arranged.  You will be picking up a Ford Flex at Pearson Airport that will be registered to you with Ontario plates.  We will need you to drive to Chicago and put the vehicle through the basement of what they now call the Willis Tower.  Most still refer to it as theSearsTower.  Same difference. It is on a South Wacker Drive.  You have to navigate your way to the lower Wacker in order to get to the parking structure that supports the entire building”

            “Am I to leave this car in the parking lot of the building?”

            “You are to drive this automobile at top speed into one of the supports of the building…”

            “And when do I bail out of the automobile?”

            “There is no bailing.  Thus shall it be.  You shall be paired with companions pure, most beautiful of eye.  In the gardens will be mates of the modest gaze that have never been touched…In other words, you get the virgins when you’ve completed the mission.”

            It was sort of a tough sell for Babar.  He undoubtedly felt that the talent in the afterlife had to be better than what he had at home.  One in seventy two had to be hot or at least beautiful to the eye.  Babar convincingly accepted the task of picking up a new Ford Flex stuffed with explosives and caesium-137 that had been purchased by a Russian cab driver who was actually Ukrainian but spoke only Russian because back in the old days, that is what everyone spoke.  This Russian cab driver used to be a scientist in the formerSoviet Unionand was able to steal enough of the radioactive material stored in lead cases to sell to crackpots for a good price.

            While Babar was on a long flight from Pakistan to Toronto, he thought about how he could get out of committing suicide.  After all, Babar didn’t hate Americans anymore than other Canadian citizens.  Americans were loud and fat and felt that they were the standard bearers of freedom and had won the Cold War through their brand of democracy and capitalism tinged with strategic economic imperialism.  Babar really wasn’t passionate about felling the largest building in the world that represented American greatness and strength.  Babar was just not that passionate about donating his life to the cause.  The wheels began to turn in Babar’s head and before long, Babar had devised a way to complete his mission and get his brother’s beautiful wife all at the same time.  All he would have to do is convince his twin to drive the Ford toChicago.  And rig the automobile to detonate from Toronto with his brother in the vehicle in Chicago.  Technology is wonderful.

            “I have never asked anything of you in my whole life.  All I am asking is that you drive this automobile for me toChicago.  Someone will meet you in downtown Chicago who is interested in buying this vehicle that I won in a hockey raffle.  I don’t need the car, I need the money. I cannot afford to make this trip right now.  You have the vacation time to do this for me. You park it in a parking structure and wait for my instructions.”

            Ali opted to do this for his brother.  Besides, he really wanted to visit Chicago to hear some Blues and eat some really good pizza.

  Ali had crossed the border at Windsor without much questioning just as the skies grew dark and angry.  Before Ali could change his Canadian currency into American greenbacks, it had begun to storm.  The wind was hurricane force and the sky was as dark as night.  Ali pulled off the highway in Detroit as the windshield wipers could not keep pace with the rain that came down as if he were in a car wash.  The streets in Detroit resembled rivers.  Ali had decided to pull off the highway until the rain let up when he hit a hole in the road that was caused by a Detroiter who had stolen the sewer cap to sell as scrap metal.  The scrap yard accepted the sewer cap even though it had stamped on it in clear letters, CITY OF DETROIT.  The new vehicle had extensive damage and made a wheezing sound like Babar’s wife as it chugged along at about 10 miles an hour or 6.2 kilometers per hour.

            Ali drove past many abandon homes and streets that had no homes as the sky began to clear up.  Off in the distance was a Walmart unlike any he had ever read about in the middle of nowhere Detroit.  This Walmart was the Disneyland of Walmarts.  There was daycare, eye care, auto care and a petting zoo within the building that stretched over a length of a city block.  Ali passed thousands of parked cars as the Ford Flex limped up to the auto center.  Upon lifting the auto up in the air, it was discovered that the shocks were shot and the frame was twisted. 

            Ali walked to a motel that rented by the hour or night.  The beds took quarters and the ceilings had mirrors.  Ali watched the BBC news on public television and drifted asleep.  It was early in the morning when he returned to the Walmart. Ali drank coffee in the waiting room of the Walmart auto service center watching re-runs of the Oprah Show when the explosion occurred.

             One of the mechanics took a torch to the shock and a frame support that had gotten crushed when the front wheel on the driver side fell inside a large hole.  Ali had been speaking on the phone when he hit hole at thirty miles an hour.   Ali nearly bit off his own tongue as his head hit the roof of the vehicle.

            The explosion was the loudest thing that anyone had ever heard before except for those that had served for their nation in places like Afghanistan or Iraq.  The sound was familiar to them and they knew that it wasn’t a gun shot or a back firing truck.  It was a homemade bomb.

            Babar took a train up to Ottawa and hung around a coffee shop until the news broke that there was terrorist act against the world’s largest Walmart.  The CBC showed pictures of stunned people crying and consoling each other while fire fighters tried to extinguish the smoldering mess that was once the grandest department store ever erected.  Babar wondered what had happened and what had gone wrong.  It made no difference to Babar either way.  A few Detroiters were interviewed near the scene.  One was a man who went by the name of Yates.

            “Itta damn shame actually…  You know how hard it was in the first place to get any kinda grocery stoh, dee-partment stoh and automotive stoh and what have you right here in inna city Dee-troit?  Shhh damn…  Come on, now.  Who gonna wanna come back now aftah this?  Terrorist don’t like no success.  Dee-troit was coming back.  People was working again and buying cars and now this.  We all gone hafta go north of 8 Mile again or buy all important stuff at liquor stores…  Ain’t right.  It like roaches, you think you got them all an then some somehow git into yo box of cereal. Bin Laden waddent the end.  He die and someone else grab the wheel and drive. I’m saddened by this today.  Damn shame….  Ain’t nothin else but a damn shame.”

            Now Babar had gotten a tattoo of a mole on his left ass cheek and purchased clothes that he knew his brother would wear.  He walked into his brother’s house with out Ali’s wife or kids batting an eye.  The dog knew his master by scent and snarled at the imposter.  Babar had to give the dog some treats just to calm him.  The wife clung to who she thought was her husband and tried to console him over the possible loss of his brother.

            “It is a shame really.  To think your brother, playing hockey, drinking and watching porn and he turns around in a short period of time to become a fundamentalist.   They say he is in intensive care and has no hearing and cannot remember who he is…  So sad.”

            Babar was hopeful that his brother might die or remain incapable of knowing who he was.  Babar rolled with it.  He made love to his sister-in-law five times the first day and four the next.  She had to leave home to shop just to keep who she thought was her husband off of her.  Everything was working out as planned until Monday morning came around and Babar arrived at work and showed his name tag and had to hold his hand over a scanner.

            “This crazy thing has been acting up lately, Ali…  Just go ahead, we’ll have this checked, eh?”  Said the guard.

            Ali worked in forensics for the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.  In fact Ali or Babar was studying finger prints and did not have a clue what he was supposed to be looking for or what he had was supposed to have been working on the Friday prior.  Ali’s co-workers thought he was a bit out of it but understood since his brother had been part of a terrorist plot to destroy an American institution like Walmart.

            When Babar returned home that Monday evening, the land line rang.  His wife or sister-in-law answered the phone and had a look of relief and happiness as she listened to a doctor report’s that Babar or Ali actually, would live.  They suggested his twin come to Detroit to spend time with him in hopes of getting his memory back.  Ali’s heart sank but really it was Babar’s heart.  He wondered if he would wind up in a Canadian prison or an American prison or if the terror cell that paid him and trained him, would catch up with him and kill him.  Ali/Babar looked at his beautiful wife/sister-in-law and told her what he thought would be best given the situation; more sex.

            “I will go to Detroit to help my brother…  It is the best thing I could do now.  I think before I go though that we should probably…  Well you know…  One last, I mean more time before I go.”

            The beautiful woman became suspicious.  The unquenchable appetite for sex, the politeness, the indifferent attitude towards their children and the dog who constantly growled and snarled at Ali/Babar all indicated that Ali was not Ali actually.  An idea came to the beautiful woman.

            “It has been quite a long time since I’ve allowed you to have anal sex with me… I think since we may be apart for some time, anal sex would be best for both of us.  Would you enjoy that, my love?”

            The real Ali had confided in his wife about his brother Babar’s fascination with having anal sex.  Ali on the other hand was never interested in engaging in that sort thing.  Ali/Babar’s eagerness revealed who he really was.

            “Okay my love…  I’m going to freshen up.  Why don’t you hop into bed and I will be there momentarily…”

            Within minutes, the RCMP had surrounded the house and came through the bedroom door and windows where Babar anxiously waited with an erect penis that pitched a tent under the sheet while he clasped his hands behind his head.  It became a very interesting story to all that heard, watched or read the details.  A man trained to be a terrorist sends his twin brother to bomb the largest building inNorth Americawith a vehicle packed with explosives and nuclear material, while moving in and assuming his brother’s life. 

The two Mounties and FBI agents burst out in laughter when Babar told the story of laying in bed waiting to have anal sex with his wife or the woman who was supposed to be his wife.  One of the FBI agents, a large African-American man, shook his head and put his hand on Babar’s shoulder.

            “You should have gotten up and ran at that invitation…”

            “Why do you say that?”

            “What beautiful woman asks her husband to perform anal on her…?  Shh damn… Come on, now.”

May 10, 2011

Covalent bondage or Schopenhauer’s girlfriend

Filed under: Uncategorized — blackhumouristpress @ 3:09 am
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Covalent chemical bonds involve the sharing of a pair of valence electrons by two atoms, in contrast to the transfer of electrons in ionic bonds. Such bonds lead to stable molecules if they share electrons in such a way as to create a noble gas configuration for each atom.

Hydrogen gas forms the simplest covalent bond in the diatomic hydrogen molecule. The halogens such as chlorine also exist as diatomic gases by forming covalent bonds. The nitrogen and oxygen which makes up the bulk of the atmosphere also exhibits covalent bonding in forming diatomic molecules.

   

 

 

            Phoebe woke up early to go over her chart about Covalent Chemical bonds for her first lesson plan as a student teacher at theJohnElroySanfordHigh Schoolon the north side ofChicago.  John Elroy Sanford, better known as Redd Foxx or Fred Sanford, had donated a large sum of money to the Chicago Public Schools. 

            Phoebe showed up early to class before the students showed.  She wore a sleeveless dress and wore her black horned rimmed glasses which she felt made her look more adult than without them.  Phoebe at best looked to be twenty years of age although she was closer to thirty.  Hall monitors asked her for hall passes and male students tried to talk to her on more than one occasion. 

The Chemistry teacher was a man by the name of Bill who mistook Phoebe’s smile and approachable demeanor to be interest.  Bill showered that morning and doused himself in Chocolate Axe.  He had heard some teenage boys talking in the hallway about how the cologne was loaded with pheromones and how females could not resist a man wearing the said cologne.  Bill died the gray from his hair, flossed his teeth and bleached his breath with mouthwash and gum.  He wore a spandex shirt under his collared shirt that kept his slight gut looking flatter and his man tits from looking too missile like.  Phoebe proudly showed Bill her chart about Covalent bonds.  Bill stood beside Phoebe, careful not to rub up against her even though he was itching to touch her caramel colored skin.  Bill had heard that Filipino girls were wild for white men and so he was oozing confidence. 

            “That is a wonderful chart, Feebs…”

            Phoebe was completely disgusted that a man old enough to be her father, had breached the space between two human beings in western cultures, lowered his voices and whispered near her ear.  Fortunately for Phoebe, the first two students entered the class.  They were loud and obnoxious for8:00amin the morning.  Several more students filed in until all the seats were filled.  Phoebe nervously began to speak to the students that looked to be her age.  The boys were sizing her up; they looked at her arms and legs and studied her pleasant face as she spoke about things that they did not care anything about.  The girls in the class criticized her appearance to make themselves feel better.  Phoebe felt like she was under a microscope.  Her mentor whose eyes never left her form, the boys in the class that thought about sex every four seconds on average and the young women that looked like they wanted to work her over after class.  Phoebe did all she could to conduct the class with clammy, shaking hands and a voice that cracked several times.  All Phoebe wanted to do was go home.

           Phoebe got home to find her roommates boyfriend loading up furniture into a moving van with three other young men.  Three young white men with hair that stuck straight up in the air, all three with tight shirts and white shoes, it almost appeared to be a uniform.   Clinton, the Doberman Pincher that Flavius, had bought for his fiancée, Monica was barking in the back of a racing Honda with fins on the back, lowered and outfitted with neon blue lights around the bottom of the car.

            “Yo man, that fucking dog fucks my fucking shit up, Imma shoot it in the fucking head.  I take pride in my shit, yo.  You should just leave that fucking dog here.  You gave her the fucking dog, let her ass take it.  I would take the fucking X-Box and leave the bitch ass dog.”
            Flavius yelled into the open window at the dog that gnawed on the slightly open glass in an effort to bite Flavius.  Flavius then turned to his friend who was worried about his car and threatened to kick his ass.  The third guy was rapping along with a song as he blasted the music to the point of rattling windows in the apartment complex.

            “Motherfucker…  Turn down the music.  One of these old ass bitches gonna call the po-lice.  Help me get the couch out this place and we gone… Clinton!  Shut the fuck up!”

            Phoebe and Monica arrived at work which was called Ye Olde Skokie Ale House.  Monica’s eyes were bloodshot and mascara had dripped down to her pink tank top.  Rubin, the bar manager who wore a Hawaiian shirt and shorts with calf high white socks and sandals, was visibly upset that Monica looked unfit to work the floor.  The Chicago Bulls were in the playoffs and the entire bar would be filled with overweight patrons looking to eat chicken wings and drink too much beer.

            “I don’t like to ask you girls too much bout your private lives but what the hell happened?  I can’t have you working here tonight looking like a bloodhound.  Go to the washroom, wash your face and put some eye drops in your eyes…  Tonight is gonna be the biggest night since the Superbowl,” said Rubin.

            Phoebe explained that Monica and her fiancé called off the wedding and so all the furniture they bought together was collected and taken to garage belonging to the boyfriend’s parents. Clintonthe Doberman was on a leash barking in the backyard of the former beau’s parent’s house.  Rubin called his friend Calabrese whose six foot Chinese wife was the bartender at The Ale House.  Fu came fromBeijingand was a mail order bride belonging to a 5 ‘5 Italian cop with a thick black moustache and hair all over his body.  Calabrese chewed his gum obnoxiously; thumbs in his belt line while he listened to Monica tell her story.  Calabrese winked at his tall wife who could only really serve beer since she didn’t understand English very well.  Fu was tall and pretty.  Calabrese wrote down a number of things on a pad of paper, took the palm of his hand and rubbed his face before asking Monica if she wanted to press charges.  Monica didn’t understand, Calabrese became impatient.

            “If he stole your stuff, it’s theft.  If it’s theft he goes to jail and his momma posts bond…”

            “Well, all I want isClintonback.  He will be so nervous.  He one time ate all the stuffing to a comforter and I had to take him to the vet to get it removed.  He did this because I left him alone for a day.  I just know he’s freaking right now.”

            Monica and Phoebe pulled it together and served close to a hundred people over the course of eight hours.  People ordered pizza, fries, wings, shots, beer as they watched very large men lope up and down on a basketball court for forty eight minutes.  The poker king came in took his seat at his table and challenged anyone to beat him.  He wore a cowboy hat and aviator glasses.  The poker king had just lost on television at4aminLas Vegastwo weeks earlier.  He was a transitory celebrity for those that deemed card playing a sport.  Joe, the cook from a neighboring bar, ordered a sixteen ounce steak with seasoned fries and fell asleep at the table as his food was served.  Marjorie, who lost her job, was playing pool with a guy named Ted who was married but said he was single.  The more they drank, the more Ted was going to take Marjorie toEuropeandAustralia.  He ordered Marjorie Fosters and spoke in a really bad Australian accent. 

            Phoebe’s final customer every night was a professor of philosophy from Northwestern.  Phil drove a twenty year old Honda Civic with a bumper sticker that said Nixon-Agnew 1972,  which illustrated his dry sense of humor.

            “The usual, Phil?”

            “If I were to change one thing in my daily routine, I may ruin the balance we have on this planet.  This world that spins at 1,450 kilometers an hour might wobble just enough to cause all sorts of issues of gravity.  We naively believe our problems have been solved by the killing of one man who is responsible for us having to face the indignity of being groped and frisked at airports all across this land and yet it isn’t clear who has won Dancing with the Stars, just as it isn’t clear who the stars actually are.  Change at this point in time might be detrimental, dear Phoebe.  Here you are scurrying about like an ant on an ant hill, serving those seeking a momentary diversion from their mundane existence by numbing themselves through legal means so that they can face their drab home life and their unfulfilling occupations and nary a man would guess that the optically pleasing Phoebe tried to teach those that we will one day entrust to carry on our human legacy.  Might I ask how you fared today?”

            Phoebe thought about lying to Phil who looked down at everyone and everything, who hated life and had nothing but disdain for anything seeking order.  Phil was a nihilist, atheist, anarchist and misogynist who constantly over analyzed the simplest things and then ridiculed them.

            “I think I reached them, Phil…  I think the kids have a basic understanding of what a covalent bond might be now and in some small way, I feel as though I may have taught somebody something.  Hopefully one day when the students are old enough to drink at a bar, they can dazzle someone they hope to sleep with, with the knowledge that they learned today from me,” said Phoebe.

            “You can only hope that the electricity leads to a stable bond,” joked Phil, as he swirled his ice cubes in his empty glass.

            “One more Scotch, Phil?”

            “One more Scotch, dear Phoebe, and then I shall sleep like an infant.”

            Phil jotted down some words on a napkin as a heavy set young lady with pig tails sang an ABBA tune in front of the Juke Box while her boyfriend in a Cubs jersey hugged her from behind.  Phil smiled and shook his head.  Phoebe was pettingClintonwith Monica and the Mexican chefs in the kitchen.  Calabrese had proudly delivered the dog to the bar before closing.  Phil left a 100% tip for Phoebe and a message on paper napkin before climbing into his ancient Honda.  This is what it said:

“The very first
Of human life must spring from woman’s breast,
Your first small words are taught you from her lips,
Your first tears quench’d by her, and your last sighs
Too often breathed out in a woman’s hearing,
When men have shrunk from the ignoble care
Of watching the last hour of him who led them.”

October 8, 2010

Section 8 or Happy Endings in Paradise

Horace owned an apartment building that housed close to thirty families on a side street just north of Devon Avenue between California Avenue and Kedzie in Chicago.  For most people, these coordinates mean absolutely nothing.  What you need to know is that it was a launching pad into Americana for fresh off the boat European Jews, Indians, Pakistanis, Croatians and Koreans with a smattering of Latinos from various Central American countries. 

            Horace inherited the building from his father who had purchased it upon moving to the United States from England.  Horace’s real name was Armitage Cockfoster III.  There were two other Armitage Cockfosters before him and a string of others going back to the days of feudalism.  In honor of one of Horace’s relatives who was viscount, they named the last stop on The Underground after him.  If you take one of the lines going out towards  nowhere, The Tube train has a sign on the front that reads; Cockfosters.

            All the tenants knew was that they paid there check to A. Cockfoster Management Inc. and their logo was a rooster on a weathervane.  Horace never told his janitor or any of the tenants that he was in fact Armitage Cockfoster III.  This mysterious entity who was supposed to be living in London always scared the janitor into complying with Horace.

            “Dwight…  Mr. Cockfoster received a most inarticulate letter from a Mr. Leviticus Israel regarding a plethora of inadequacies in his unit.  Mr. Cockfoster has dispatched me to determine what is necessary and what is bogus.  I shall be at the building later this afternoon,” said Horace.

            Dwight, who was named after Dwight D. Eisenhower, was actually born and raised in Romania and received the name Dwight after General Eisenhower had traveled through Bucharest after World War II.  General Eisenhower took a picture with Dwight’s father and had a bite of a pastry and a sip of coffee.  Both are still in a sub zero freezer and have been determined to indeed have Dwight D. Eisenhower’s DNA on the pastry and coffee.

 Dwight Iliescu was smoking a cigarette out in front of the building and nervously groomed his bushy moustache with his thumb and index finger.  He flicked the cigarette into the street as Horace pulled up in his Jaguar with a Union Jack sticker on the back.  Dwight thought Horace was a mealy mouthed little yes man for some fat cat sitting in a comfy chair in front of a fireplace somewhere in the English countryside, sipping Scotch and petting one of several bloodhounds.  That kind of stuff only happens in movies.

            “Meester Horace…  Let me say to you something before we go up.  These people are animals.  They are dirty people who cause this problem for themselves.  These guy can’t even talk English.  Everything motherfuck this motherfuck that.  You see for youself.  He’s home now.” Said Dwight.

            “Don’t they work during the day?”  Asked Horace.

            “Boss, nobody works.  You work and I work so that they can stay home and don’t do shit.  That’s how it work, boss.  Come on.” Said Dwight.

            They climbed a staircase that squeaked and flexed.  The hallway smelled of spices from India and urine.  The forty watt refrigerator bulbs helped to set the dismal mood of the run down building.  Horace did what was necessary.  Much of what needed to be done for the sake of humanity was optional in Horace’s opinion.

            The door opened and a smallish black man of possibly forty years of age, opened the door and genuflected as if he were ushering royalty.  Mr. Israel had no idea he was actually in the presence of some sort of periphery royalty and that’s the way Horace liked it.

            “Yeah…  I done sent an email to that Mr. Cock…  Cock…  Whatever his last name is.  Far as I’m concerned it cain be Cocksucker cause he ain’t spend a fucking nickel on this bitch.  Who you now?”  Asked Leviticus.

            “Horace Spencer…  I have been sent by Mr. Cockfoster to see what your complaints are so that we can avert any issues with Section 8,” said Horace.

            “Kay…  Follow me…  You see them motherfucking baseboards?  That there some Tom and Jerry bullshit.  Look at the size them fucking holes!  I got them stuffed up with steel wool but them motherfuckers cain chew threw anything.  I done come out the other day an they looking at me dead in my face.  I done stomped my feet and they just look at me like I’m crazy.  Well I come home the other day an my two boys got one them rats on a goddamn glue board and the pouring bleach on the motherfucking thing in the bathtub and it screaming and then my wife an daughter was screaming and I was ready to just clean out the whole motherfucking place.  I went and got my 22 and shot the thing in the head.  Now I will pay to fix the damage to the wall.  The shell got lodged right here and I done took it out already.  So I know Dwight brought up some Mexicans to put some shit in the corners but them rats are fucking sharp.  They ain’t eating that shit when they cain chew through the cabinets and eat themselves some Captain Crunch…  Okay next,” said Leviticus.

            The three men walked into the living room where Leviticus pointed at the ceiling.  Horace was mystified by the huge Star of David that hung from a thick and expensive gold chain from Leviticus’ neck.  Leviticus wore a long sleeved polyester shirt that was unbuttoned to the middle of his chest.  Horace was familiar with Sammy Davis Jr. but was not aware of any other black Jews.  Truth was that Leviticus married a devout Jewish woman and changed his name so that he and the children and wife, would all be Jewish together.  Israel and Leviticus were adopted names.  His real name was Ronald Smith even though nobody called him that any longer.

            “Look at that ceiling…  Okay…  They students up there, right?  Indians and they do some kind of dance and light up some shit that burn my eyes an my kid’s eyes.  The kids be crying.  I went up there an toll them they breaking my ceiling and to quit lighting that shit up.  They do what they fucking want.  Crazy ass fucking music at all hours … One time I go up there an they got a fucking octopus looking thing on the floor an they all smoking out this thang.  I toll them they gone push me too far.  You best talk to them Indians cause we gone have a problem soon,” said Leviticus.

            “Are we talking about east or west Indies?”  Asked Horace.

            “I don’t know nothing bout which side they come from.  You got the 7-11 Indians and you got yo casino Indians in a fucking tee-pee fighting with John Wayne, okay?  Upstairs they the quickie mart Indians.  They cook some crazy shit and smoke some stuff I ain’t never smelled before.  I smoked weed in my day an this ain’t no fucking weed that I know of.  Anyway, you talk to them and I need this shit fixed cause I don’t need no fucking plaster falling on my family, ya dig?  Okay next…”

            The three men then moved into the bathroom where flies clung to rust colored stains on a bubbled wall.  Horace blinked hard and shook his head.  Horace understood that the damage meant a leaking sanitary pipe in the wall.  The cost to fix was going to be possibly hundreds or a thousand.

            “Them flies love shit and shit coming down the motherfucking walls from the inside.  Now I cain smell the shit an piss.  You cain’t smell that now cause my wife done bleached the shit out the walls but it will come back.  Now y’all cain fix this or I cain call the city an then Section 8 ain’t gone pay shit, y’dig?  Now I know y’all ain’t got rats, dancing Indians and shit rolling down the inside y’ walls at yo place.  I’m tire of Dwight here always telling me he gone fix this an fix that.  I cain tell you his lazy ass don’t do shit round here.  If it weren’t for the fucking Mexicans this place would look worse than it do.  You wanna keep Dwight, that’s Mr. Cocksucker’s bullshit to work out with y’all.”  Said Leviticus.

            “Fuck you, you fucking guy…  Who you think you are?  I work more in one day than you work in you whole life!”  Shouted Dwight.

            Horace stepped between the two men.  It was at that moment that he noticed a hole in the wall behind a poster of The Power Rangers that was twenty years old, torn and curling enough to show a fist sized hole in the wall.  Horace pulled the poster back to discover the hole.  Leviticus quickly explained the damage.

            “Okay now this here a touchy subject cause I done toll my wife you cain’t be hammering on them walls less you know where the studs are.  So she wanted to hang a religious thang there an I toll her to wait til I cain git to it an she tried and made that hole.  I will pay this out my own pocket but I wish not to discuss this in the presence of my wife cause she will git violent an I don’t need that shit.  I got nough problems without having to fight over walls, y’dig?  So I will cover this one but y’all gone hafta roll up y’sleeves and git this shit done lickity motherfucking split cause I done had nough.”  Said Leviticus.

            Horace made a few notes on a note book and told Leviticus that he would get back to him shortly.  Leviticus told them both men; god bless.  As Horace and Dwight walked down the stairs, Horace read an email from his realtor on his Blackberry.  There was a cash offer for the building that was thirty percent lower than what the market value was just a year earlier.  All Horace caught was Dwight’s question about what he thought could and should be done.  Horace massaged his temples and looked across Devon Avenue where there was a neon sign on a Korean restaurant that advertised live barbeque.  The sign flashed the word Paradise. There was a massage parlor behind the restaurant for happy endings. Horace said the word out loud and smiled.  Dwight didn’t understand the comment.  He lit a cigarette and watched as Horace drove off in his late model Jaguar and then spit on the ground.  Dwight said to himself in Romanian inside his own head.

            “If this is paradise, what the hell is hell?”

October 2, 2010

Mixed Marriage

Filed under: Uncategorized — blackhumouristpress @ 2:05 am
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Kevin met Keisha after a hockey game.  It seems unlikely given that Keisha really had an almost disdain for the sport of ice hockey.  Keisha’s boyfriend at the time was the goalie on the opposing team.  Kevin noticed the pretty African-American woman in the stands and made it a point of finding out where the opposing team was going to drink that night.  It was at the bar of a Red Lobster that Kevin met Keisha.  Kevin paid the waiter twenty dollars to check her identification and then give Kevin all the information.  Keisha got up to use the washroom at the Red Lobster and it was in the galley that Kevin intercepted Keisha and professed his undying love for her.

            It could have been Kevin’s boldness that really attracted Keisha to him since Kevin grabbed Keisha and began kissing her in nearly clear view of where her boyfriend was sitting.  That move was the beginning of a love and life everlasting.  The profession of love that needed to be legally bound by a document whereby Kevin and Keisha would belong to one another was where it all headed from that moment on.  It all culminated in marriage at a Baptist Church with a Catholic priest also presiding.  It was a grand affair to see the friends and family of Kevin get together and break bread with the family and friends of Keisha.  Black people trying to dance to rock from the 1980’s and white people just trying to dance.  The whites had to admit that Keisha was stunning in her white gown and the blacks had decided that Kevin looked okay for a pasty dude that really needed to take in a bit more Vitamin D via the sun.

            Time went on and is often the case, Kevin and Keisha got together and eventually had a child.  They both were excited to be parents and really loved their young daughter with all their being.  Kendra was born with curly light brown hair, light skin and blue eyes.  There was a twenty five percent chance that Kendra would come out light skinned and she did.  That in itself meant nothing to either parent other than the child looked more white than black to most but occasionally she looked more black than white to others.  Kevin joked that Kendra was a white zebra with black stripes and everyone always chuckled at the comment.  It was sort of cute to all but Keisha.

            Now for Keisha’s thirty fifth birthday, Kevin had decided that he and his wife would take a grand vacation and travel to South Africa.  A land where white people once ruled over black people and now black people ruled over all.  As the time drew closer, Keisha began to think about the tremendous amount of miles and even more kilometers it would take by airplane to get to Johannesburg and the possibility of the airplane crashing into the sea and then their young daughter would become ward of the state.  It suddenly became imperative that legally custody be granted to one of their friends in the event of their death.  The only issue was who it was going to be.

            “Benita is the sister I never had.  I would do anything for Benita and she would do anything for me.  She is Kendra’s godmother and she loves Kendra as her own.  Benita did a great job with her own children and knows that she would do a fabulous job with Kendra if something were to happen to us.  I would like to legally make Benita Kendra’s legal guardian before we go…  She is the right choice; she is a loving, educated black woman.”

            Kevin happened to be working on his spoken word/poetry reading.  He was matching up a bible verse from the Gideon Bible that he stole from a motel in Fargo, North Dakota to some rhythms that he came up with on his $150.00 Casio that he bought in at a pawn shop under the elevated train on the north side of Chicago.  It was sort of a Bossa Nova beat underneath poetry.  Kevin frequented a coffee house on the north side of Chicago with a clear view of Lake Michigan.  On Tuesday nights, random people would congregate to read indirect words about being indirect.  Kevin chose the Gideon’sBible.  A smooth jazzy beat looped over and over as Kevin softly read Deuteronomy 4: 32.

            “Ask about the former days, long before your time, form the day God man on earth; ask from one end of the heavens to the other…”

            Keisha interrupted.  Kevin blinked hard and turned off the Casio.  He could no longer concentrate.

            “Why the bible, baby?  Why don’t you write a poem about something on your mind and rattle that off at the poetry readings?  Asked Keisha.

            “Because the bible moves me.  That’s why.  Why is black so important to you?”  Asked Kevin.

            Keisha was taken aback by the question.  Kevin was aggravated by being interrupted and by Betty’s qualification of being a suitable surrogate parent because she was black.

            “What if I said I wanted to have my brother Peter to be a surrogate in the event of our death?”  Said Kevin.

            “You want you’re under achieving brother to raise our child?  The only white landscaper on the north shore?  Maybe he could put her in a junior college and teach her how to tell the difference between grass and weeds,” said Keisha.

            “Oh and your friend Betty, the one you call your sister, the one you tell our daughter that she is our aunt, the one who chose some man whore to be her husband…  You want her to hook up with some slick bastard who is going to be lining up our daughter when she hits puberty?  Great idea.  Benita chooses a worthless man before and so he will be the next one but meanwhile our daughter winds up being the Korean chick that Woody Allen wound up marrying that was his foster child.  No way.  I’m not game for that.”

            Keisha became indignant at the implication that all black men were womanizers and capable of indiscretions with young girls who may or may not be relations.

            “So all black men will rape our daughter, huh?  Is that what you’re saying?  Its cool to sleep and marry a black woman but still keep your eye on the brother, right?”

            “You get on a goddamn elevator; you’re the first one to hold your purse against your body as soon as some dude with braids, sagging pants and a long white t-shirt comes slooping up towards us.  I already know he views you as an Uncle Tom and a sell out because you stand there staring at the floor display, clutching my hand.  I didn’t make the black man a villain, they made themselves one.  I’m just here to give each individual a fair shake.  When it comes to my daughter and I’m already dead, I have to say that the screening process left up to your friend Betty, scares the hell out of me.  Her judgment sucks in my opinion.  A warm body and a large cock is all that she really needs, right?”

            “Your brother is an under achieving bust out.  He’d be happy watching television all day, drinking a six pack, asking your mom if the mail came so he could see if maybe some credit card company sent him or your mother’s dog a check in the mail.  Loser is what should be tattooed on his forehead and it saddens me to think that you would want your daughter to possibly be raised by someone that has zero ambition that is content watching NHL games in your mother’s basement with other bust outs who live with their mothers.  Why is this?  Because he is white?  You can be a worthless human being as long as you are white?  Is that the case?”

            Two days passed and neither Keisha nor Kevin would talk to one another.  The two had angered each other and dredged up latent racism that dwelled deep within both of them.  It was Kevin that thought long and hard about a compromise that would keep their South African vacation from being a case study in apartheid; suggest the lesbian Asian friend to be the surrogate mother and custodial parent in the event of death.  Keisha was surprised by the suggestion but listened to her husband without interruption.

            “I thought about this whole thing and it is really all pretty silly.  I know that Benita would be a good parent to our daughter despite whatever philandering waste of space that she might hook up with and although my brother is a bit arrested in his development, rest assured he would care for and love our daughter more than if it were his own.  I have a solution.  Your good friend Joyce from Wisconsin would be a great alternative.  Although I hope our daughter does not turn out lesbian, I know that Joyce would take good care of Kendra and being sort of butch, she would try to instill in her the necessity to be proficient at sports.  Hopefully our daughter would never be a Green Bay Packer fan but if it happens… Just like being a lesbo, I won’t be around to witness it…  What do you think?”  Asked Kevin.

            Keisha thought about the whole issue and the potential for ruining their own two week dream vacation to Africa and decided that an Asian lesbian was a great compromise.  Joyce cried upon being asked to be a parent in the event of their death.  Kevin, Keisha and Joyce toasted the agreement.  Disaster was averted.

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