Blackhumouristpress's Blog

April 21, 2016

Hockey On Monday’s Only

Filed under: america,humor,humour,Short Story,Uncategorized — blackhumouristpress @ 3:19 pm
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“This is a new era…  There are many things you can’t say no more.  I grew up with 30 different names just for black people.  Then you had the Jews, Asians, Hispanics and then the gays.  Gay could have meant actually gay or it could have meant stupid, wimpy or retarded back then.  We can’t use retarded today either.  The day is coming when we won’t be able to call another man a pussy and maybe it’s good and maybe it’s not…  I dunno.  All I do know for sure is that people, some people, want your head on a stick today…  The gays are season ticket holders in this small town.  We could have been stuck in minor league hockey half way up the arctic circle in towns where they only want to see guys get their brains bashed in out in the fucking tundra.  It’s a nice town here.  We’re in Florida for fuck’s sake.  The league wants us to come down hard on you.  Like they want us to get rid of you.  This is the fourth time.  Fines, suspensions and sensitivity training and you’re still calling people names like homos, faggots, queers, gayrods…   What the fuck is wrong with you?”

Byron pulled his long hair back and took a sip of his coffee.  The nerve was still alive in one of his teeth that was cracked in half from a puck to the face from the night before.  He had stitches in his chin and his left eye watered for years involuntarily from a stick to the eye.  Byron was a low-level warrior born in a town near Sudbury, Ontario.  He played two levels below the NHL, earned $32,000.00 a year and lived in a trailer park outside of Fort Myers, Florida.  When Lord Byron as he was known wasn’t playing ice hockey, we was sitting outside his double wide trailer, drinking beer with the neighbors, having lot’s of sex and riding his motorcycle.  Byron didn’t care about being a fourth liner on an NHL team.  In Florida, he was a star in the community.  He did local commercials for Mexican restaurants, car dealerships and bail bonds.  He started a summer camp strictly for obese children that didn’t have the money to go to fat camps.  Byron loved his life.  Slowly, the town to the west, nearest the ocean, became a hot spot for older gay couples from the northern part of the United States as well as Quebec.  There were a lot of French-speaking gay couples too.  Byron grew up thinking that all French speaking Canadians were gay.

So here’s what happened- A team from Macon, Georgia had a player from Byron’s childhood area that was a native Canadian.  Indian, indigenous whatever you prefer.  The player had crossed checked Byron years ago when they were in youth hockey.  The player got Byron in front of the net and crossed checked his kidneys so hard that he wound up pissing blood for a few days.  It was hard for Byron to move but he finished the game and vowed to seek retribution someday.  The day came for Byron.  The player wound up getting picked up in the southern states by an opposing team.  Byron waited until the player made a pass from the boards in front of his own team’s bench.  He hit the guy who had once made his kidneys bleed from the inside and dumped him head first over the boards.  Then he dropped his gloves and waited for the player to get up, get back on the ice and face him.  The guy wouldn’t fight Byron.  It could have been that Byron had blindsided him and he was winded, dazed from landing on his head or knew Byron was a fighter and that he had thirty pounds on him.

“You fucking faggot…  You’d rather have a cock in your mouth or ass than play hockey, wouldn’t you?  Remember giving me a stick to the back in midgets, you fucking asshole.  I almost had to go on dialysis because of you.  Let’s go, you fucking faggot ass pussy motherfucker.  I’m gonna make you piss blood tonight.”

Byron forgot that he was wired for sound.  To try to build interest in ice hockey in a part of the country that only had ice in little glasses pool side,  the team made all players take turns wearing a camera.  It was Byron’s turn to wear the camera.  Families at home on the internet got to hear Byron in real-time.  Byron killed a lot of interest that day.  Local families watched and heard, everything that went on in a local game that day from Byron’s perspective.  Byron had two fights and a hat trick.  One of his goals was the game winner.  Byron forgot about the camera until the press conference when he was asked how he felt about homosexuals.

“How do I feel about what?  Did you say homosexuals?”

“Yes, that is correct.”

“What kind of question is that?”

“As you know, you were outfitted with a camera that recorded everything that went on in the game from the top of your helmet.  Fans got to really be a part of your goals and fights.  You used a homophobic slur while challenging an opposing player to a fight for an incident that occurred at a previous game when you were a youth.  The fans of south Florida will want to know your thoughts.  We want to be the first to carry it.”

“Well …  You got to understand that certain things are said sometimes but that they don’t mean anything bad towards anyone other than the person it is directed at, eh?  It’s part of the job to occasionally fight and before the fight…  Occasionally there are negotiations and discussions.”

The response made some laugh because they loved the gladiator nature of the sport and others it did not.  Some season ticket holders threatened to cancel their season tickets if Byron was not released from the team.  On local talk radio, it was a mixed bag.  Some liked the way Byron talked and others thought it was not good for children to hear graphic profanity and slams towards the gay community.  After it looked like Byron might be released over the fourth offense, Byron took to the airwaves again and offered an olive branch.

“I’m very sorry about the language I used that was broadcast locally.  I forgot that I had the camera on and well…  There is no excuse for what I said.  When I was a boy, my mother would have stuffed soap in my mouth for using profanity.  I wasn’t raised to swear.  I was raised in a town where I don’t think we had any gays.  We just got used to using that term but we didn’t mean nothing by it.  I understand that I could use other words and terms and so if I hurt anyone’s feelings by my language, I am truly sorry.  I don’t want anyone to feel badly about being gay.  It’s like being left-handed…  I’m left handed.  I often wondered why god made me a lefty when the whole world is righty.  Being gay has to be a little like that.  I dunno exactly but I’m sorry if I made anyone feel bad.  I don’t ever wish to make people feel bad…  If the community will accept my apology, I would like to start a youth and adult hockey program here in south Florida just for the gays.  If you’re gay and a man or a woman, or your a man but you feel like you might be a woman actually or whatever.  I don’t know how it all works…  What I’m offering is a chance for all of you who are gay, to come and learn the game.  Learn to skate, learn to play and have fun.  No charge…  It’s on me.”

Byron thought to call his clinics/camp, Lord Byron’s Hockey School for the Gays or South Florida’s Gay Hockey instead it was given the name a simple name- Lord Byron Hockey.  Games and clinics were on Monday nights.  A web site for it was set up.  The first four words after the name was- Hockey on Monday’s only.  Byron was not to blame for this one.  People laughed it off.  Byron’s camp was a success.  Everyone in the area wanted to learn to play hockey.  Men, women, children, blacks, Hispanics, Asians and homosexuals.  Hockey is actually for everyone.

 

 

 

 

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March 3, 2015

Half Families, Ice Hockey and Wonderpets

Filed under: humor,humour,Short Story,Uncategorized — blackhumouristpress @ 6:29 am
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Every couple, every family has that thing that puts them over the edge. For Coach Monahan and his wife Lynn, the team manager of the squirt house league ice Devils hockey team was a bacon cheeseburger on a pretzel bun.

It would be too simplistic to blame the burger. Of course it was the overbearing, unrealistic parents with stopwatches and whining about “balanced ice time” and the problem of living life in America. Lynn would approach her husband about parental concerns while Coach Monahan would watch NHL highlights late night after their kids went to bed, long after practices and games.

“J wants to know why his son J jr. never gets to play on the power play or penalty kill and why it is that when there are faceoffs in our zone, you pull his line off the ice.”

Monahan looked over at his wife who was monitoring the mundane lives of Facebook friends and catching up on email beside him on the couch. She would rather be watching Kardashians but would let Monahan watch hockey highlights. Monahan got a free pass for going to watch 50 Shades of Gray instead of staying home to watch the Detroit Red Wings play the San Jose Sharks in real-time. Monahan taped it instead. 50 Shades seemed improbable and too Harlequin to be real for Monahan but he was a trooper and for that reason, Lynn was a trooper right back. She did have to ask her husband the coach how she the team manager should answer a group question copied to the whole team. Monahan answered Lynn.

“Junior is twenty to thirty pounds too heavy. J who knows nothing about the fucking sport of ice hockey and should be happy that his little butterball gets as much equitable ice time as I can afford without giving the game away because his little liability is huffing and puffing like a middle-aged man making love… Ask J why it was that he didn’t have the nutsack to ask me these questions tonight when he was standing over me while I tied my skates to get on the fucking ice. He talked about how cold it was outside and how much his kid is learning from me and then goes home and poses questions he could have asked me in person. Ask why it is that he needs an open forum to ask a question that he knows the answer to- his kid is fat, slow and ineffective and uninspired to move his fat ass to the best of his ability. Video games and high fructose drinks have caused him to develop tits and love handles at a young age. When the boy smiles, his eyes disappear… Am I going to fast, dear?”

Lynn did not answer Monahan. Instead she wrote the email verbatim paused for a moment before hitting the send button much the way pilot paused before hitting the drop button on the Enola Gay before releasing the first atomic bomb on Japan in 1945.

The answer did not sit well with some parents and with others it was exactly how they felt only they would never have constructed such a frank response. J, the father of Junior, did not attend the next game but he did make sure that several officials from the league were in attendance to monitor the game. The game went poorly. The goalie was sick and so a stand in had to face a firing squad of competent skaters and shooters and stood there like a deer in the headlights, like a scarecrow in a field a corn field- you get the picture.

After the game, before the pilgrimage home, the family unit stopped for food. Monahan’s step-daughter ordered a bacon pretzel deluxe but failed to mention that she did not want onion, mustard, mayonnaise, catsup and lettuce. The pubescent curled her lip at the food as if she had a pile of shit on her tray.

“This is not what you wanted?”

“I didn’t want all this stuff on it.”

“Did you tell them you wanted nothing but a burger, bacon and a bun?”

“Well… She didn’t ask me.”

Monahan took a deep breath, took the sandwich to the woman behind the counter and asked her to scrape off everything and give it back to him. Monahan’s step-daughter opened the burger and was astute enough to see that it was not a new burger but the same burger which had been scraped of condiments. This caused momma to come to her daughter’s rescue.

“You could yell and scream at kids and refs for an hour and a half but you don’t have the fortitude to go ask a small woman behind the counter to just give us a plain burger. It’s not coming out of her pocket. She won’t be offended… And I’ll tell you this- your daughter will not wear her coat in an ice box ice rink when I tell her too, will not urinate when I remind her to, will not drink lemonade because it’s pink and none of that matters to you. You want to give MY daughter a hard time over a burger. I will buy the fucking burger myself. I will go face that tough looking woman behind the counter and ask for another burger. Sit here with your daughter and ask her why she cannot drink lemonade that is pink.”

It was at that moment that Monahan pictured himself walking out of the restaurant, getting into the car and driving to the most southern point in the United States- Key West. No ice except in glasses, no hockey, no parents, no wife, no kids, no problems. Just a Mai-Tai and warm water.

On the ride home, Monahan’s daughter was quietly listening to a Taylor Swift song next to Lynn’s daughter. Lynn looked out of the passenger window with tightly folded arms. Monahan knew there was nothing he could say to make Lynn speak to him at that moment. He knew that being a coach was a thankless job that he did for the kids and that being the team manager was a thankless job his wife did to share in something he loves and to be with him. Monahan turned down the radio and began to sing a song that he learned watching the Wonderpets with his daughter when she was a toddler. Monahan always thought that the idea of a talking duck, guinea pig and turtle was pretty lame but the song popped into his head and he knew his wife would soften up and laugh if he could get the girls to just sing along with him.

“This is sew-ious, there’s a baby bewd in twouble somewhere… What’s gonna work? Teamwork! What’s gonna work? Teamwork!”

Yes, it was teamwork that melted the ice in Lynn’s heart, made the pre-teen forget about her hamburger debacle, the grade schooler forget about lemonade being pink, made Monahan not look like a too serious ice hockey coach who was afraid to rectify a burger gone wrong.

February 18, 2014

Unwanted Guests

Filed under: humor,obama,Short Story — blackhumouristpress @ 11:55 am
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“So have you been watching the Olympics?” Asked Tristan.
Tristan studied the couple while his wife Isolde or Izzy was putting an assortment of cheeses and Spanish ham on a plate to go along with some wine from Argentina. The man with the thick glasses and pronounced under bite, had a permanent smile. He was a horse of a man, which will be interesting to note, but as soft as a marshmallow. Izzy thought it would be nice to invite a new friend from work over to their house. Izzy’s thought was to get Tristan’s mind off the fact that their daughter, a one time Olympic prospect for women’s ice hockey who had quit playing division I hockey at Princeton, met and married an orthodox Jewish kid who writes his own Reggae on acoustic guitar. After getting married, they opened a vegan café where people can come and do nothing on computers all day, read their poetry or play music on a small stage. Tristan often wondered where he failed. What did he do to drive his daughter, a young woman who was recruited by every major university in the United States with a women’s ice hockey program, to Judaism, vegetarianism and away from sports. Tom, the man with the folksy southern accent and marvelous under bite, pushed back his glasses, swirled his wine like a massive… mass and this mass’s center was surrounded by electrons which orbit the nucleus like planets revolving around the sun. You get the picture, right? Tristan watched the swirling red wine and was waiting for the moment when it might leave the glass and fling itself against the wall, the white carpeting, his wife’s blouse or his chubby son’s ugly sweater. It never happened.
“The Olympics is a farce and the winter Olympics are even more farcical than the summer. My son Audie here shows champion Arabian horses and has been a world champion three times. Lemme show you this.”
The southern gent showed pictures of his pugs, perfect lawn without a weed, his cats and then dozens of pictures of his son dressed in various costumes on top of horses.
“This horse here… You see this horse here?”
“Yes, I’m seeing it,” answered Tristan.
“This horse here is worth more than your house. This horse had to be put down for a broken foot; I mortgaged my home to buy this horse for my son who was diagnosed with Asperberger’s . This horse saved my son and won more awards than any other show horse that has ever walked this planet. My son is a three-time world champion. Someone advised me once to get my son on a horse to help him build empathy as he matured. It was as if a light switch went on.”
“Oh my god! I loved Homo Americanus. There was no greater horse I’m convinced than Homo Americanus,” said Audie as he stuffed his face with Cheese, ham and crackers.
“Quite a name. Did you name him?” Asked Tristan.
“Oh my god no! The breeders give them their names and it’s customary to not rename the horses,” said Audie.
“Do the horses respond to names?” Asked Tristan.
Nobody answered that question. More wine flowed and Tristan listened to how horses were inseminated by men with long arms and rubber gloves up to their armpits. More pictures were shown and movie clips on a phone. Tristan kept drinking and listening and looking at his wife who forced this gathering upon him on a night when he just wanted to relax. The southerner with the under bite named Tom, his wife Mary Sue and their son Audie never asked any of them one question. They went on and on about horses, breeding horses, horse shows, where you keep horses, finding the right places to house horses. Finally Tristan left the room and re-emerged in his pajamas. Izzy, Tristan’s wife was incensed by the rude act of sending a non-verbal message to houseguests that it is time to go home. Tristan filled his wine glass with some more wine and a hunk of cheese, took a seat and began to speak.
“I raised my daughter Catholic, taught her to play ice hockey, she became an Olympic prospect, received a Division I scholarship, walked away from that and married a Jew, became a Jew herself, makes lesbian safe muffins without gluten and any other substance that could have derived from an animal. It broke my heart… My heart beats at 52 beats a minute while resting. I can bench press more than my weight six times. I can run a mile under nine minutes still for a man of my age. I can still fuck on command. I like historical fiction, Jazz music sometimes and rock sometimes. I didn’t vote for the president and this does not make me a racist. With that said, I think the guy is doing okay considering the idiots he works with and against who refuse to help one another out for the good of the people. My wife posts shit like I’m saying on Facebook constantly so that anonymous friends of friends give her a thumbs up. I hope you all give me a thumbs up tonight for what I’ve told you. You didn’t ask me any of the things that I just told you but then again, I didn’t think you were going to ask us any questions at all. Horses are great and it is most interesting to know that a man impregnates show horses rather than other horses. I tried to be a sport tonight and I’ve had just enough wine to express my thoughts. My wife won’t talk to me now for a week and that might be just the time I need to get through the Olympics and accept that my daughter might move to Israel and collaborate with her husband on a folk album of children songs written in Hebrew, played with a Reggae beat… We all have our crosses to burn or bear, my friends.”
Tristan wolfed down the rest of his wine, held up his glass and smiled.
“L’chaim… Hebrew for to your health. I’m sure somewhere my daughter would appreciate me saying this. Goodnight and may your god keep you.”

January 14, 2014

Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms

Filed under: humor,Short Story — blackhumouristpress @ 9:23 am
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If you live in a place like Australia or Brazil, it would be hard to imagine it being colder than inside a freezer with wind and snow. Not a soul stirred outside a small restaurant five miles west of the United Center on Madison Street in Chicago. It was the sort of night when police officers are directed to pick up homeless and dump them off at centers designated for warming during extreme cold.
The owner of the small bar washed dishes, toilets, tables and salt off the hardwood floors that was tracked in by patrons alone. The Chicago Blackhawks were playing the San Jose Sharks at the United Center just a few miles away. A man with a voice best fit for opera, sang the national anthem of the United States. Over weight, mustachioed buffoons stuffed into hockey jerseys like casing around sausage of white, black or red colors with a the profile of a Semitic looking indigenous American Indian plastered across their chests, cheered wildly for a song that they really didn’t like or revere all that much. The proprietor leaned on his mop and watched the display of temporary patriotism prior to the start of the game and wondered how many of the “fans” actually understood the game of ice hockey. As the owner pondered something that could not be quantified, a neighborhood patron entered the establishment. There he stood with long flowing hair a la Fabio and a deeply assertive voice.
“I take it you have the game on…”
“If you want me to turn on the Bachelor, I could do that for you…”
“Quite droll… Fix me a Motherfucker post haste, my good man.”
A Motherfucker is composed of Gin, Rum, vodka, triple sec, Galliano, Hennessey and a splash of whatever cola you have available. The former marine who went by the biblical name Matthew downed two Motherfuckers before two other patrons entered the bar. The pair who soon entered the bar was already liquored up and only entered the bar because they saw humans watching a television screen together in front of a wide array of liquor. They were old, white, rich, drunk and obnoxious. The bartender, floor washer braced for idiocy as he asked what it was that they wanted to drink.
“A really good bourbon that would remind a man of a warm day at the Kentucky derby where debutants team up waiting to be tapped like kegs. Yes a bourbon for me and whatever beer my accomplice might want.”
The accomplice rattle off a slew of obscure microbrews that most people never heard of and then settled for a Harp. The bourbon drinker appeared to be a bloated Richard Gere with money. He spilled a little of his bourbon on his white shirt and then went on to tell the other two men how he bought the suit jacket in Bermuda while on vacation with the wife of a close friend.
“Do you have a Lear Jet? Have you ever been to Nova Scotia to see the total eclipse of the sun?” Asked the barman.
“Only an old fart would refer to a song written by a young woman who is now in her seventies.”
“Your only as old as you allow yourself to feel, my good man.”
“Fuck both of you and this long haired pussy motherfucker right here. Only a faggot wears his hair that fucking long, hoping to get butt plugged by a priest or a Penn State football coach…”
Mathew took a look at the thin man dressed as though he had escaped from a country club, raised his Motherfucker to his lips and then posed a question.
“What kind of a J. Crew looking dork wears Topsiders with no socks on a day when it’s colder here than in Alaska. You wanna make fun of my hair? I can still comb and grow my own. In fact I’m willing to donate the hair off my nut sack so that a fuck stick like you can grow a little on top of their head… Calm down Sally before you get hurt. I’ve fucked tougher guys than you in prison when I had nothing to do. I am a Marine and have fought to keep this country free for people like you. Enjoy your first drinking experience and fuck yourself.”
Everyone but the longhaired Marine laughed. The mince man with beer muscles decided to accost the longhaired man because he was indeed jealous that a nearly middle-aged man could wear his hair like a debutante. Mathew covered his drink with a bar napkin and went out to the sidewalk to have a cigarette. Within a minute, the other two men walked out to the sidewalk to have cigars. The Richard Gere-esqe man bragged about a one night stand with a young woman that he had landed the night before and how he had referred to something from the 1980s and went on to learn that she was born in 1991. The country clubber began to sob about his recent divorce and how he missed his kids. Matthew flicked his cigarette into the street and went back in to watch the hockey game. Chicago was up 2-1 in the third period. Matthew told the barkeep how good the Blackhawks were and how they were going to go on and win another Stanley Cup this year. The bartender with the Detroit Red Wing tattoo on his left arm that was visible listened and politely disagreed.
“Corey Crawford is playing about as good as Joan Crawford. I will bet you $20.00 that he let’s in a goal to tie and they lose in OT…”
Matthew slammed down a twenty-dollar bill on the bar. Not more than a minute later, San Jose scored a goal to tie the game. Matthew ordered another Motherfucker. Richard Gere and the country clubber returned from the cold smelling of cigars. The man with Topsiders playfully punched Matthew’s shoulder, as he was about to take a sip of his Motherfucker. The Motherfucker spilled on Matthew’s shirt. He stood and grabbed the shirt of the thin man. The manager reached over the bar and pushed both men away from each other. The man with a sweater draped over his shoulders like a Princeton co-ed laughed in the face of the longhaired military man. It only serves to stoke the flames of anger in a man who angered easily.
“I like blindly patriotic fucks like you… You sign up to die for causes that don’t even exist. You cry during Chevy truck commercials and love the president because he’s the commander-and-chief. Never mind that he was born in Kenya.”
Matthew took out a small revolver and set it on the bar. The sweater-clad man pushed Matthew off of his barstool and laughed. Matthew grabbed his gun, pressed it to the foot of the offender and discharged his weapon. The bullet went through the foot of the thin man, bounced off of the floor and lodged in the ceiling of the establishment. The thin man howled in pain and then laughed so hard that he urinated in his pants. Richard Gere slapped down a $100.00 and told the barman to keep the change. He didn’t want any part of a police inquiry that could last all night. Matthew was suddenly scared for what he did but remained stoic. He apologized to the barkeeper for a sudden lapse of sane judgment but justified the act by stating that the victim was an asshole. The victim agreed that he was an asshole and asked for a cab to be called.
“I’m a dick. I know it. My wife would agree with me. I’m just going to take myself to the hospital and claim that some punk with a hood on shot me when I wouldn’t give him any money for panhandling… Oh shit. The Blackhawks did lose the game. Looks like longhairs lost twenty bucks.”
“Do you want me to shoot your other fucking foot?”
“No… How bout a shot of tequila before the cab comes and it’s on me… Bartender, pour yourself one.”
The three men had a shot of tequila and then Matthew helped the thin divorced man with a sweater draped over his shoulders, no socks and a hole in his foot get into a cab. Matthew accompanied the man to the emergency room where they both agreed it was a young guy with a hood on who shot the thin man in the foot. The desk clerk, a black woman asked for a description of the offender. Both white men looked at one another before answering. Matthew decided to answer.
“It would be racist of me to say that the offender was of a particular race consistent with this sort of crime, ma’am”
The black woman held her pen to her lips and squinted while listening to Matthew. She surmised that the crime was a drunken mistake. She posed a question.
“Do you want to admit to shooting this man in the foot or should I just wait for the police to ask you?”

July 23, 2013

Never Tear Us Apart

“My old man dies and doesn’t leave me his antique cars, his house, his summer house, his condo in Florida, his restaurants but he leaves me a fucking horse?”
“Yes… A horse. The horse is housed at the Hazel Park track and is a harness racer. Your father saw to it that all the expenses for the horse are taken care of. There is a note that goes along with this if you would like me to go ahead and read it.” Said the Attorney.
“Sure… Read the fucking note.”
Nicholas,
I had always hoped that you would have had my ambition to succeed and persevere. You had extraordinary talent for ice hockey and were content living in my basement to play beer pong and X-Box. The fact that I owned several Coney Island restaurants and you were content being counter help for minimum wage instead of helping me run things, sent up a red flag years ago. I have left the chain of restaurants to your sister as well as my homes and cars. You can have that beat up old home in Detroit that you now live in with your friend and I too leave you my horse. I was given this horse as a gift and I am giving it to you as a gift. I envision you and your bust-out buddy, sitting in the stands at Hazel Park betting your pittance against your own horse. It is yours to do with as you wish. Your mother always came to your rescue whenever I tried to push you along and you never amounted to much. I love you, Nicholas but could not in good conscience give all that I created to you just to have it melt away. Have fun with the horse.

Dad

“My dad was always a tight waded motherfucker… So when can I see my horse?”
Nick finished playing morning pick up hockey with Anthony at the Hazel Park rink in suburban Detroit and showed up at the stable where their horse was housed. In the stable was a small black man in a Speedo bathing suit and a pair of Timberland boots that was singing and doing Tai Chi moves. He had long hair and was ripped, as he was petite. Josiah sang the INXS song, Two Worlds Colliding. Josiah was unaware of the two large white men watching him as he closed his eyes and sang until tears came to his eyes.

Don’t ask me
What you know is true

Don’t have to tell you
I love your precious heart

I
I was standing,
you were there

Two worlds collided
And they could never tear us apart


We could live
For a thousand years
But if I hurt you
I’d make wine from your tears


I told you
That we could fly
’cause we all have wings
But some of us don’t know why


I
I was standing
You were there,
Two worlds collided
And they could never ever tear us apart.
“Fucking great… I inherited a broken down horse with a gay Sammy Davis Jr. horse jockey.”
The smallish black man stepped up to the two white men without fear. He spoke like the Geico gecko which surprised the men even more.”
“Take me for a fucking poofter will ya? I’ve shagged more female white and dark meat in me loife than Colonel fucking Sanders could shake a stick at, mate. Fuck with me and you’ll be feeding the fucking trees. Now then… Who the fuck are you?”
Josiah’s great-great-great grandfather had been taken on ship from England and dumped in Australia. Josiah’s ancestor was a former slave that was imprisoned and had found aboriginal people and mated with them. Josiah wanted to be a singer and actor and was working his way to Hollywood from Sydney, Australia and was stuck in a quagmire, which was Detroit. Josiah was talking with two career recreational, non-paid ice hockey players who never quite made it and they never made it because they lacked drive and dedication. They coasted throughout their twenties and at the cusp of thirty years of age, they were about to become inspired by a Prince look-a-like who was determined to win harness races, earn enough money and move to California to be discovered.
Josiah took the hands of Anthony and Nick and looked them intently in their eyes and began to sing again.
“You were standing… I was there… Two worlds colliding and they could never tear us apart… We were fucking brought together by a hoi-er being for the purpose of making it, mates. Let’s not fuck this up, eh?”
Nick and Anthony laughed hardy laughs and took their jockey to a Detroit Tigers game and then to the casino. They got trashed and then formed a triumvirate. Within a year, their horse won enough money for Nick and Anthony to buy a low-level minor league hockey franchise for $30,000 in the Michigan League. On Friday and Saturday nights, you can find them playing for their own team at a rink in Suburban Detroit. Patrons pay $5.00 to see fights and a little hockey. Working at a coffee shop in West Hollywood, California is a singing, small black man with a strong Australian accent, passionately desperate to realize his dreams so much so that he inspires all those that he touches to try harder and keep hope truly alive. Two worlds colliding.

January 16, 2012

A Letter From My Son’s Hockey Coach or Darwin Was Right

Filed under: humor,Short Story,Uncategorized — blackhumouristpress @ 7:42 am
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Parents, Please be advised starting with our next game (Jan. 21st) I will go back to having 5 defence and 9 forwards. This will address any issues we have had with trying to keep ice time balanced during a game. In the event we are short players for a game I will do the best I can as a volunteer coach to try and keep it as fair as possible to all our players. This means I will roll the lines to get as even as possible skating time for each child, regardless of how other teams “match” our lines . TRANSLATION- YOU SIGNED UP FOR PARK DISTRICT ICE HOCKEY.  THIS IS NOT AAA OR AA AND SO THE PARK DISTRICT HAS PUT A GUN TO MY HEAD BECAUSE OF YOUR COMPLAINTS AND SO I HAVE AGREED TO PLAY EVER KID AS EQUITABLY AS POSSIBLE.  IF ANY OF YOUR KIDS EVER MAKE A AAA OR AA LEVEL, YOU WILL SEE WHAT INEQUITABLE IS ALL ABOUT DESPITE THE FACT THAT THE COST FOR YOUR CHILD TO PLAY BETWEEN SEPTEMBER AND APRIL IS EQUIVALENT TO BUYING A USED AUTOMOBILE EACH YEAR OR TAKING A HAWAIIAN VACATION FOR A MONTH.  KEEP THAT IN MIND WHEN YOU ARE CRYING.

 It has always been my intent to try and keep everyone’s ice time as close as possible while trying to keep competitive with other teams. It is not an easy task to try and get the kids off the ice for a shift change while play is going on. I am always open to suggestions that any one might have , about ANYTHING . If there are any parents that would like to assist in working the bench during a game I would be more than happy to oblige.  TRANSLATION- I WILL GIVE YOUR FAT ASS A STOP WATCH AND TELL YOU THAT YOU NEED TO GIVE EACH PLAYER ON THE TEAM EXACTLY 15 MINUTES OF PLAYING TIME AND YOU CANNOT CHEAT AND GIVE YOUR BORED, UNINSPIRED, SPOILED, TALENTLESS LITTLE BRAT, ONE SECOND MORE OF PLAYING TIME THAN ANY OTHERS.  WHEN YOU THROW YOUR HANDS UP AND TELL ME IT IS IMPOSSIBLE, I WILL PAT YOU ON THE BACK, GIVE YOU A HAPPY MEAL AND RECOMMEND THAT YOU SHUT THE FUCK UP FOR THE DURATION OF THE SEASON.

 Please contact me with any concerns you may have regardless of what they might be . Don’t forget that we follow the 24 hour rule for any complaints to any of the coaches. The intent of that rule is to prevent any “heated” discussions that may cause hard feelings , not to give you time to forget the problem . Level heads solve more problems than hot ones ! Hockey is a journey , not a destination- TRANSLATION- I HAVE A MILLION OTHER THINGS GOING ON IN MY LIFE OTHER THAN COACHING THIS TEAM FOR NO MONEY.  I DECIDED TO COACH THIS TEAM BECAUSE MY NIECE IS THE ONLY GIRL PLAYING ON AN ALL BOY SQUAD AND WANTED TO ENSURE THAT HER EXPERIENCE WAS AS POSITIVE AS POSSIBLE GIVEN THAT YOUR HORMONE DRIVEN LITTLE FUCKS ARE THINKING ABOUT LINING HER UP A WHOLE HELL OF A LOT MORE THAN PUTTING A HIT ON AN OPPOSING PLAYER DURING A GAME.  WITH THAT IN MIND, WE CAN DISCUSS YOUR CONCERNS AFTER 24 HOURS SO THAT I AM NOT TEMPTED TO ASK YOU TO STEP OUT TO THE PARKING LOT AFTER THE NEXT PRACTICE.  I’D ALSO LIKE TO RECOMMEND THAT YOUR SON TAKE UP GOLF BECAUSE THERE IS A LOT LESS PASSING IN GOLF AND HE WON’T HAVE TO FEAR BEING HIT UNLESS HIS ASS IS STANDING ON THE FAIRWAY.  I AM FULLY AWARE THAT YOU FEEL YOU COULD COACH THE TEAM A WHOLE LOT BETTER THAN ME.  BASED ON THE PARENT/PLAYER GAME THAT WE HAD BEFORE CHRISTMAS, I WOULD HAVE TO CONCLUDE THAT YOU NEVER PLAYED AND ALTHOUGH YOU HAVE SEASON TICKETS TO SEE AN NHL TEAM, I SUSPECT YOU ARE WATCHING THE BEER VENDOR MORE THAN STUDYING THE GAME ENOUGH TO VOICE AN OPINION WORTH CONSIDERING.  REMEMBER WHAT DEAN WORMER ONCE SAID IN THE MOVIE ANIMAL HOUSE?  “Fat, drunk and stupid is no way to go through life, son” – DON’T BE THAT PERSON.

 I hope it will become a life long love your child can someday share with their own kids . There are many skills he will learn along the way . Some children pick up the game easier than others, that doesn’t mean they can’t all have the same amount of fun. See you at the rink- Coach Bob-TRANSLATION- YOUR KID WILL HAVE KIDS ONE DAY PROVIDED THERE ISN’T OCEAN FRONT PROPERTY IN KANSAS WITHIN THE NEXT TWENTY YEARS AND WE GO OUT LIKE THE DINOSAURS.  I HOPE YOUR CHILD REMEMBERS YOUR SCREAMING AND BERATING YOU GAVE HIM FROM THE STANDS AND SHUTS HIS FUCKING MOUTH AND JUST SITS AND WATCHES THE GAME.  YOUR SON WILL NOT BE IN THE NHL UNLESS HE CHOOSES TO WORK AS AN USHER AND SIT PEOPLE AT AN ARENA.  THAT IS AS CLOSE AS HE WILL GET TO WORKING AT AN NHL ARENA.  I WOULD SUGGEST YOU ALL READ UP ON DARWIN.  YOU MAY GET BORED AND SINCE YOU REALLY DON’T READ MUCH OR UNDERSTAND WHAT YOU ARE READING, PLEASE READ RE-READ.  I WOULD STICK TO THE INHERITENCE OF ACQUIRED CHARACTERISTICS.  THIS WILL EXPLAIN A LOT TO YOU ABOUT NATURAL SELECTION, SURVIVAL OF THE FITEST AND THAT PHYSIOLOGICAL CHANGES ACQUIRED OVER THE LIFE OF AN ORGANISM MAY BE TRANSMITTED TO OFFSPRING- FURTHER TRANSLATION- WE CANNOT PICK OUR PARENTS.  IF YOU ARE UNATHLETIC AND SLOW, DON’T EXPECT TOO MUCH FROM YOUR SON…  WHATEVER…  I’LL SEE YOU AT THE RINK- COACH BOB

 

June 14, 2011

Going to see The-rapist or X-Box Will Kill Your Marriage

Filed under: humor — blackhumouristpress @ 4:17 pm
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Lacey came out of her condominium with her toddler daughter in tow when she noticed her common law husband was asleep on the hood of her car.  Lacey swung the Hefty bag full of shit diapers from their daughter’s special poop container that they received at a baby shower which Lacey loved so that the dirty diapers would not stink up the kitchen garbage.  Instead it stunk up the child’s bedroom.  Lacey swung the garbage bag like a battle axe upon Jeff’s relaxed abdomen.  Jeff immediately sat up and looked bleary eyed at Lacey who looked pretty and smelled even better albeit furious.

            “You and I are going to go to a marriage counselor or you can get your things and move out.  It’s become hockey every night and drinking until dawn while I’m a single mother…  This is fricking poppycock, Jeff.”

            Jeff went into the apartment and slept for an hour before getting on with his day.  By noon time, Jeff had sent a simple text to Lacey.  He had decided to send the white flag up the flag poll.

            ALTHOUGH I DO NOT BELIEVE WE NEED TO SEE A THERAPIST, I WILL GO IF YOU WANT ME TO.

            Ten seconds later, Jeff received an angry text from Lacey.

            YOU WILL GO IF I WANT YOU TO!!!  YOU’RE DOING ME A FUCKING FAVOR?

            Ten seconds later, Jeff sent another text.

            I BELIEVE THAT THERE IS SOME MERIT IN HAVING AMODERATOR, THIRD PERSON, DETATCHED, GUN FOR HIRE TO LOOK AT OUR RELATIONSHIP FROM THE STANDS AND TELL US WHAT WE MIGHT BE DOING WRONG.  IN OTHERWORDS, I WILL GO.

 

            Jeff and Lacey showed up at the office of a thin woman named Marcy who had two cats that walked around the cushions of the couch and rubbed up against Jeff and Lacey.  Jeff hated cats and was suspicious of any man who would choose a cat over a dog.  Jeff looked around the room that had copies of French Impressionist paintings and some Asian art next to a smiling Buddha with a Bonsai plant and a tiny waterfall.  Marcy had pictures of her bald husband with a beard and moustache that was chubby and shorter than her with their two fat children that had their father’s toothy smile and mother’s close set eyes.  The space between Marcy’s eyes were so close, it actually looked like she was cross eyed sort of like Shaquille O’Neal.  Jeff thought the whole idea of therapy was a scam but did not want to fight Lacey who had been coached by her friends and Dr. Laura Berman that drawing out hidden, latent, simmering resentment, was the only hope to keep from an eventual break up.

            “Jeff, I think what I am hearing from Lacey is that you have trouble connecting and are caught up with things that do not include your fiancé.  Playing ice hockey, playing X-Box, playing softball, playing golf, putting together model airplanes in the basement are all things that are fine as an individual but what can you do as a couple that can help you connect?  What things do you think that you and Lacey can do together that would help you to be a strong couple again?”

            Jeff took a sabbatical from his hobbies and took up Salsa dancing, wine tasting, a pottery class and started seeing plays once a month.  On weekends, they would watch a movie together and bang around tennis balls.  They went for walks with the dogs and their daughter went to zoos and museums.  Jeff was father and partner of the year.  He was a role model of compliancy.  Lacey’s female friends thought that Jeff had become a renaissance man.  Their husbands thought he had been an emasculated wimp who let his testicles dangle from Lacey’s ears like chandelier earrings.

            Jeff got the call one evening that his old hockey team needed him to come out and fill in for their new goalie who had taken over for Jeff while he went through his reformation.  Jeff asked Lacey if it would be permissible to play a men’s league hockey game at 10:30pm on a Tuesday night.  Lacey was looking through an Ikea catalog and watching two gay Australian men on Oprah’s OWN network, redecorate a house in South Carolina.  Lacey had her back against the headboard and was nearly ready for bed.  Jeff had hoped Lacey would have just gone to sleep so that he could just sneak out, but Lacey had stayed up later than usual.  Jeff felt like a little boy again.  It felt as though he was asking his mother if he could spend the night at a friend’s house.  Jeff hoped to hell that Lacey would not oppose the idea since he had committed to playing the game in advance.

            “Jeffery, I am not against you playing ice hockey.  I think you need an outlet.  I just worry where I fit in when you’re playing five nights a week and then you are shot the next day and need to come home from work and sleep because you have another late night game the next night.  I need you and so does your daughter…  That’s all I’m saying, baby.  You need to keep balance.  Go ahead.  Have a good time.  If you win or lose, remember that goalies don’t win or lose games for a team.  They just try to help their teams.”

            Jeff kissed his wife carefully who had just slathered vitamin E all over her face and had her hair up in a scarf.  Jeff gathered up his gear and headed to the rink.  Jeff had a rough first period.  He allowed in the first three of four shots and then he became impossible to get past.  The team won and decided to go for the proverbial one drink.  Jeff had four.  Jeff had four drinks and fish tacos with sour cream.  At about two in the morning, Jeff took off for home.  Jeff began to sweat and it felt as though gerbils were running through his intestines.  It became urgent that Jeff find a bathroom before it became impossible to hold it in the diarrhea that was trying to get out the way the French once stormed the Bastille; with vigor and anger.

            Jeff got the key to the gas station bathroom that stunk of urine.  Jeff hovered slightly above the seat so as to not allow any strange microbes from entering through his asshole.  The angle at which he hovered allowed for projectile shit to hit the handle and wall behind him instead of the water below him.  Worried that Lacey was in bed, sleeplessly waiting for him, Jeff decided to text Lacey on the status of the situation.

            I’M AT A GAS STATION BATHROOM SHITTING MY BRAINS OUT.  THE SOUR CREAM MUST HAVE BEEN BAD.  I DIDN’T WANT YOU TO WORRY.  JUST A TOUCH OF FOOD POISONING, WILL BE HOME SOON.

            Before Jeff could hit the send button, the phone slipped out of his hands and into the abyss of brown water in the commode below him.  Jeff had to fish through his own excrement to retrieve his phone.  It was Jeff’s hope that the water did not reach the inner components.  The phone died a tragic death. Jeff swore and was tempted to throw the phone at the wall.  Instead he wiped it down and washed his own shit off of his hands before he headed out to his car.  Before getting to the car, the sinking feeling came over Jeff that he may have left the keys in the ignition and then locked the door.  Jeff could see the keys dangling from the ignition and the doors were locked tight.  The night became early morning and the light of day did not make things any easier.  Jeff came to on the hood of Lacey’s car.  Lacey did not have any dirty diapers to hit him with.  Instead Jeff got a face full of organic whole milk from the sippy cup belonging to his daughter.  Jeff was startled awake.  He leaned on his elbows on the hood of the car and whipped the milk from his eyes.  Jeff tried to plead his case but Lacey wasn’t interested in hearing what he had to say.  Jeff became angry after everything he had been through and began to yell at Lacey.

            “You know what?  I played hockey and then had a few drinks and while I was on my way home, I was abducted by tall beautiful red haired aliens who love to play X-Box, give oral sex and play fantasy sports.  They took turns on me and then dumped me on the hood of your car.  I don’t have a good explanation for why my cell phone smells like shit and that I have crap under my fingernails…  So if you want to tell Marcy that I have fallen off the wagon, so fucking be it.  I don’t give a shit right now.”

            Jeff received no text messages during the day and after work, he was a bit apprehensive to come home.  Upon coming home, Jeff was greeted with a beer and a deep dish pizza.  The baby was put to bed early and Lacey stayed up watching the Detroit Red Wings play the San Jose Sharks.  Jeff thought that he was being lured into something by Lacey the way male preying mantises lose their heads.  Jeff finally asked Lacey why everything seemed upside down.  Lacey kissed Jeff’s neck and looked into his eyes while twisting his hair around her index finger.

            “I was so turned on by the way you spoke to me this morning. It was so forceful and full of emotion.  All I could think about was getting you home tonight…  Finish your pizza.  Momma’s got some dessert for you.  In the other room.”

            And they lived happily ever after…  The end.

December 21, 2010

Merry Christmas, Detroit or Take the Homeless Skating

Tim could hardly be called tiny but the name sort of stuck with Tim since he didn’t hit puberty until late in high school.  As the saying goes, Tiny’s nut did not drop until late in adolescence.  Tiny or Tim as his mother called him, was short and had a high pitched voice until senior year of high school.  It was at that time that Tiny joined the ranks of all the other boys who were becoming men.

            Tiny grew up in suburban Detroit and played ice hockey from kindergarten through juniors when he finally came to grips with the fact that he was good and not great and that professional hockey was not going to be his vocation.  Tiny went to the University of Michigan, became an accountant, found a job and started a family in Los Angeles before being moved back by his company to suburban Detroit.

            Saying that he was born and raised in Detroit was not a source of pride to Tiny.  He felt as though he had not really gone very far in life by returning to a town that seemed to have crumbled, decayed and stagnated through the years.  Returning to Detroit seemed to be a punishment to Tiny who was squeezed out in the running to climb a rung up the ladder of his company’s firm.  Instead his boss gave him a ho-hum review and gave him the choice of losing his job or move to Detroit.  Tiny opted to keep his job and move to Detroit.

            For anyone that ever had to move from Los Angeles to Detroit and really spent some time in inner city Detroit where neighborhoods gave way to prairie and trees grew through the roofs of abandon homes that were not burned down or decayed to pieces, Detroit could be quite surreal.  Tiny was determined to put in his time for his company that was housed in the General Motors Renaissance Center along the banks of the Detroit River in the heart of downtown Detroit.  Tiny bought a condominium on Lafayette which was walking distance from the Renaissance Center.  He didn’t want his family to get the feeling of permanence.  Condominiums seem more transient than single family homes at least Tiny felt this was the case. 

            Tiny’s wife was sort of indifferent to Detroit being a native Angelino who thought places like Michigan was somewhere on the east coast.  It had to be since it was in the Eastern Time zone, right?  Susan exercised profusely and shuttled their sons to hockey practice up in Troy, some fifteen miles north of the city to play for Little Caesar’s.  Tiny, when he wasn’t working, spent a great deal of his own free time late at night playing men’s league hockey or rat hockey in well to-do towns north and west of Detroit.  When Tiny told fellow hockey mates that he lived in 313, most were quite stunned.

            It was the night before Christmas Eve that Tiny went with some of his buddies that were Detroit Firemen to play in a fund raising tournament in Windsor, Ontario.  Tiny sent his wife Susan alone with their two boys to a holiday tournament outside of Toronto and opted to play hockey himself. 

            The tournament was uneventful for Tiny.  He played defense and had a few assists and allowed a few bad goals to happen by not tying up his man.  He had a few push matches in front of his goalie, had a good sweat and then returned with the team to downtown Detroit to finish a night of male bonding; play hockey, drink, watch hockey, drink, gamble and drink some more and then possibly hit a strip club, pass out, return home hung over and be low keyed and a family man on Christmas Eve.

            Tiny stood out in front of a downtown watering hole called the Old Shillelagh after watching the Detroit Red Wings play at Joe Louis Arena.  A digital display could be seen from the street letting everyone know that only eight two days were left until St. Patrick’s Day or possibly one hundred days left of potential winter weather before the Tigers would return to Comerica Park as a sure sign of summer.

            Tiny smoked a large cigar that dangled out of the corner of his mouth like a large phallic symbol.  Smoking indoors was only allowed in casinos and so the men stood on Monroe Street smoking, laughing and talking.  A disheveled looking black man with rags hanging off of him and leathery exposed hands asked the smoking men if they had any change to spare.  The man wouldn’t take no for an answer.

            “Its Christmas y’all…  Y’ain’t got some spare change so I kin buy me a hamburger and a little water?  Come ahn y’all…  Find it in y’heart t’help a man who ain’t gotta dime.”

            Tiny listened to the man and he thought about how he felt trapped in a Detroit that was so different than the city his father had worked as an assembly line worker for General Motors from the end of World War II until 1984.  Tiny’s father retired before he was let go.  He outlasted the change that was coming.  Tiny’s rant was angry, racist and drunk.  Even his fellow hockey mates were surprised by his words even though they may not have disagreed with him.

            “This is your fucking Detroit…  Since the riots and Coleman Young, you people have done nothing but run this city into the fucking shitter and you hold your hand out and ask people like us to give you more.  Well you got the whole fucking city to yourselves.  Go ask one of your own to give you some fucking change…  I could use a change.  Change this town back to a place where people might want to live.”

            The man looked at Tiny with a blank stare and then shuffled off into the night.  Tiny went back in and had a few more pints of Guinness before deciding to go to his parent’s home rather than go on to play poker at the Greektown Casino and crash at the Greektown Hotel with his teammates.  Tiny would have stayed but he needed to let his parent’s dog out at his boyhood home in Warren since his parents were visiting Tiny’s brother and his family in Akron, Ohio.

            Tiny blared Van Halen on his fabulous sound system in his Range Rover as he sped north on interstate 75.  The thought came to Tiny to piss on the abandon Fisher Body 21 that once made Cadillac limousines. It was symbolic.  Tiny needed to piss but he was going to piss on the symbol of what Detroit had become and was mired in. The building stood abandoned with all the windows smashed out of it, covered in graffiti and home to drug addicts and homeless. It was Detroit’s Chernobyl. Snow had begun to gently fall as Tiny took the interstate 94 ramp from interstate 75.  Tiny was singing, Hot for Teachers as he took the curve too fast.  Tiny couldn’t control the SUV.  It hit the guard rail and went right through it.  The large vehicle felt weightless as it plummeted over twenty feet and landed nose first on the ground.  The car didn’t roll or tip, it stood vertically on end.  The airbag deployed and hit Tiny with such force that it broke his nose and cheek bones.  Tiny smashed his sternum on the steering wheel and fell in and out of consciousness.  Tiny had a dream that he was walking on a sunny day through a field of knee high grass towards the Fisher Body 21 building.  It was the 1950’s and the building was strong looking, vibrant and intact.  Tiny walked up to the security guard at the entrance who saw him bleeding.  The security guard posed a question.

            “Say Mack…  What in the world happened to you?”

            The security guard asked over and over until the voice changed along with the words and the accent.  The day was no longer sunny; it was cold, dark and snowy.  He could hear a voice posing the same question over and over again.

            “Say man… What happened to you?  You okay, man?  I know you breathin.  Kin you hear me?”

            Two old homeless black men raced from the fire they had built within the Fisher Body 21 building to see what had happened to the driver of the car that had sailed over the side of the freeway.  Tiny gave a faint response.  One of the homeless men took off on foot to possibly find a cop or someone with a cell phone that could call for an ambulance.  The other homeless man ran back to the building and grabbed a ratty old comforter that he dug out of the garbage.  It smelled horrible but it was warm and Tiny began to go into shock.  Tiny was aware of the fact that he was seriously hurt and the idea of dying that night was entirely possible.  Tiny was scared and began to say out loud that he wanted to live.  He had a wife and kids and he hadn’t yet done all the things he set out to do in life.  Tiny suddenly regretted that he didn’t spend more time with his wife and kids.  He regretted racing through life, doing two things at a time at all times.  He regretted being so angry and dissatisfied with life.  Tiny sniffled as he listened to a homeless black man that he couldn’t see.  All he could feel was a random stranger holding his hand.  If he were to die, someone living would witness it.  The homeless stranger was no stranger to the loss of life.  Jonas had lived through Vietnam and at least a decade on the streets.  Jonas quietly tried to reassure Tiny to fight.

            “Listen boy…  You keep yo eyes open an tell y’self you gone live.  You got a wife an kids…  That reason nuff to live foh.  Yo wife an kids don’t want to be putting yo ass in the goddamn ground on Christmas…  Hell naw.  She want you to give her some present and y’kids want the same.  They want to sit round and eat and talk like people do on dem holidays…  Just like Jimmy Stewart,” said Jonas.

            Jonas rubbed the top of Tiny’s left hand.  Jonas was cold but acclimated to being cold since he lived in the cold.  Tiny trembled almost uncontrollably as his teeth chattered.

            “You cold, I knows it…  Picture walking through a jungle where it so dang hot you kin barely breathe.  You got mosquitoes biting on you and you sweat so much at all times.  I lived through that in Vietnam foh two years, boy.  I sat in the jungle with a young good ole boy from Georgia who hated me foh the color my skin an when the time come an he was tremblin from shock ah been shot, he held mah hand an thanked me foh being wid him… He died an I felt bad.  I felt real bad cause I nevah toll him to fight.  I jus listen to him an he needed t’hear me tell em to fight foh his life…  I’m telling you, boy.  Fight foh yo life.  Fight foh yo family…  You don’t give up, boy.  You keep treading water cause the lifeguard coming.”

            Tiny fought hard to stay awake.  He thought about all the things he wanted to do and say to people that meant so much to him.  After a while he could hear sirens getting closer and closer.  The voice ceased speaking to him and his left hand grew cold.  Tiny passed out and came to in the hospital surrounded by his entire family and a television news crew.

            Every year since the accident on the day before Christmas Eve, Tiny and his hockey teammates rent out the Old Shillelagh and Campus Martius ice rink.  Homeless people from all over Detroit come to get a free meal of corned beef and cabbage and then ice skate for free at Campus Martius, which has an outdoor rink.  Homeless men and women put aside their woes and demons for a few hours as they shuffled across the ice to the sounds of Bing Crosby’s White Christmas.  It may seem like a bizarre thing to take the homeless ice skating but none of them minded.  In fact every year the homeless look forward to a day of dignity.  Tiny served food at the restaurant and tied skates at the ice rink.  He no longer raced around in traffic and cut people off.  He did not let insignificant things ruin his days either.  Tiny spent time with his family and took time to appreciate and grasp that every moment of life was life itself.  Tiny took the time to take life in instead of letting it race past him.  Almost dying will put life in true perspective.

            Tiny was offered a lateral move with his company back to Los Angeles and he declined.  When asked why, he answered; I am Detroit, Detroit is me.

December 5, 2010

I Love You, Dude or The Hockey Marriage

Filed under: Uncategorized — blackhumouristpress @ 8:23 am
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The Ronnies are what Ron Taylor and Ron Fitzgibbons were called by everyone from grade school on who knew the two best friends.  The Ronnies spent nights at each other’s house as little boys and played on the same hockey teams all the way through high school.  They were voted the most likely to go Columbine on their own high school by their classmates.

            Ron T. never finished college.  He was a freshman for four years at a junior college and was fortunate to pass the drug test that UPS gave him before he got a job loading panel trucks in the middle of the night.  Ron T. sort of liked his job.  It was mindless and secure.

            Ron F. sold beer in the summers at Wrigley Field which was sort of funny since he hated the Cubs and thought baseball in general was sort of an out dated sport.  Most of the year he worked for a Korean man who owned an independent video store.  In the store on the shelves were the entire first rate Hollywood blockbusters like Iron Man 9, Spiderman 7, and The Flintstones meet Yogi Bear at the Phantom Ranch with The Globetrotters and Scooby Doo and so on.  Behind a wall of the store was the world of debauchery that 90% of the customers came in for but even those customers were getting most of their stuff off the internet.  Ron F. was able to talk his boss into buying the Center Ice package so that he could watch all the NHL games from work during the baseball off season.  And so between selling and renting DVDs to lonely men, Ron T. would sit behind the counter, glued to any number of NHL games. 

            Ron T. and Ron F. would play ice hockey every morning somewhere around the city of Chicago.  Sometimes it was at Johnny’s Ice House on Madison Avenue, some times Mc Fetridge on the north side of the city, sometimes Franklin Park by O’Hare and so on.  Usually the boys played everyday except Saturdays.  Saturday nights were reserved for going out to clubs to try and find love for the night with any women that would have them.

            Both Ronnies played juniors for a few years after high school and then hung it up when they realized that being third liners on a junior B team in the middle of nowhere, was a sign that they were not going to be scouted by the NHL.  They both came back to Chicago and became men’s league all-stars.  Any night of the week, they could both find a late night game with a team that needed a player and usually they did that in addition to playing pick up hockey each morning.  Days went as follows: Ron F. picks up Ron T. after he takes a quick nap after work.  They hit the 7-11 to get a Monster energy drink and donuts though most recently; Ron T. began to grow up a bit at 28 years age and began to drink coffee.  The clerk whom they called Habib yelled at the Ronnies almost daily for making a mess. They would then show up at a rink early and watch whatever was on television which was usually The View.  They would criticize the women and guests without listening to anything they were talking about while putting tape on their sticks and checking the blades of their skates for nicks.

            “Dude…  That one dude from Cheers was fucking Whoopie Goldberg until he found out she was a fucking bull dyke and was fucking around with Ellen degenerate…” said Ron F. in his pseudo surfer boy/burnout voice that he still maintained from high school.

            “That’s fucking bullshit, dude.  They just fucking broke up.  She’s as ugly as your asshole but she ain’t a dyke.  She’s fucking old and knows that she’s not fuckable anymore.  Most white dudes wanna fuck a black chick like Beyonce.  When they can’t, they go home and beat a woman that looks like Whoopie.” Said Ron T. while taping his $200.00 Easton one piece stick with 5.5 lie and a slight heel curve. 

            “Fuck it, dude.  I hope we get two goalies.  I don’t care if it’s a fucking St. Bernard or your fucking mother just as long as we have something to shoot at,” said Ron F.

            In the pick up games, the Ronnies always wore the same color.  It was a gray which was not white and not dark.  On the front was the name of one of their men’s league teams that they had pledge alliance to called The Pigs.  Their jerseys said in big letters, “The Pigs” and underneath that was a pig with a flat top hair cut holding a hockey stick in one hand and his penis in the other.  At the age of twenty eight, the Ronnies thought that was still hilarious.

            Ron T. was the passer and Ron F. was the scorer.  Ron T. was geared towards being defensive and Ron F. was most concerned with scoring and so they worked well together.  One day Ron T. took a slap shot from the blue line. It rode up the blade of someone’s stick and took out six of Ron F.’s front teeth.  The teeth exploded and left shards of porcelain throughout Ron F.’s mouth.  The Ronnies were sent to Cook County Hospital where they sat for close to six hours because Ron F. did not have health insurance and after six hours the duo grew tired of waiting for the free health care and went home. The bleeding had stopped but Ron Fitzgibbon’s mouth was a mess as was his swollen face.

            The cost to replace the three upper and three lower teeth for Ron F. was going to be over $10,000.00.  There was no way either of the boys had that sort of money.  Luckily for the boys, there was a way and a loop hole.  Since civil marriages between men and men and women and women were going to be legal in Illinois, Ron F. popped the question to Ron T.

            “Look man, you hit me in the fucking mouth.  I can’t talk or even smile cause I look like a fucking golf ball went through my fucking teeth.  We get this thing done and I get my fucking teeth fixed after you can claim me on your insurance and then we get a divorce or annulment or whatever it is you need so that you can still get married in a Catholic Church when you find the right person,” said Ron F.

            “Are you fucking cracked?!  You want me to marry you so you can get insurance?!  I’m not fucking doing it, dude.  I’ll find a way to get the $10,000.00,” said Ron T.

            “What the fuck do you care?  Being a fag is in style now, dude.  Nobody is going to say shit.  They’ll say those two dudes got married.  Who the fuck cares anymore?  Fucking Magic Johnson got AIDS, got rid of it and got fat and nobody cares that he’s probably fucking dudes.  We don’t gotta have a party and invite friends.  We just do this and I get my shit fixed and then we get this shit undone.  I think you owe me this much, fucker…” said Ron F.

            Ron T. thought about the idea and decided it was the fairest thing he could do considering he was the reason his friend was missing a mouthful of teeth.  Both Ronnies were too manly to wear a cage or a visor on their helmets.  They grew up idolizing Chris Chelios and Tony Amonte from the Chicago Blackhawks and decided after high school that they would never use facial protection again.  Both received a few stitches here and there as well as a black eye now and then but never a need for a dental overhaul. 

            Ron F. did all the leg work.  He got the marriage license and filed all the paper work so that on the first day of legal same sex unions, he could get legally married to Ron T. so that he could then add him to his insurance and get Ron F.’s teeth fixed. 

            The spring day happened and both men dressed in dark suits nervously sat waiting for their chance to approach the judge as they looked at honest to goodness same sex couples that were ecstatic that their day had finally arrived.  An older white man with a close kept gray beard and a young black man, young enough to be his son, held hands, giggled and snuck kisses as they sat next to the Ronnies who looked more like they were going to jail than to be united in matrimonial bliss.  The flamboyant young black man asked the Ronnies if they had plans to go on a honeymoon to celebrate.  Ron F. was disgusted and gave the most deranged answer he could muster.

            “I got a can of fucking Crisco, a gerbil and some PVC in the trunk of the car.  My fiance lost a bet we had on who would win Dancing with the Stars and so he will be the happy recipient of the rodent at the closest fuck palace we can find near this place.  We don’t have the time for Cancun…” said Ron F.

            The two Ronnies looked somber and embarrassed as they said their vows in front of the judge.  When the ceremony concluded, they hugged each other like two Soviet era diplomats and then walked out without any further contact.  They emerged from the court house with cameras and microphones in their face.  Ron T. was ready to just run on foot but Ron F. punched a camera man in the face who put the camera too close to him.  For that he landed in jail and in the paper and it soon became known to all who ever knew the two Ronnies that they were joined together in matrimony.  Some were genuinely surprised but most who remembered the inseparable pair said that they knew it all along. 

            If you go to open hockey some morning somewhere in Chicago, you may run into the Ronnies. Don’t mention the marriage if you can help it.  It makes them both angry. They most likely will be wearing Pig jerseys.  And full metal cages.

March 3, 2010

The Gold Medal for Dad or Oh Canada!

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Horace Stewart turned fifty years old on February 28, 2010.  To look at Horace, you’d never know that he was half a century old.  Horace spent his free time biking, running, swimming and playing ice hockey.  Horace played ice hockey four days a week.  He played on a forty and over men’s team in Brampton and then with the Toronto area Royal Canadian Mounted Police’s second team of men over the age of thirty five.  Then there was the Sunday night shinny hockey or open hockey, as it is widely known as in the United States.

            Horace woke up that Sunday morning and went to the local Catholic Church.  Horace was raised Anglican as he was of British descent but after his wife left him nearly ten years earlier, Horace began to go to the Catholic church to meet other single or divorced people.  Horace had been seeing a few women but they all seemed to come apart after the age of forty five.  It was as if a bomb went off inside each and every one of the women he met.  Horace was never sure what the cause of the interior combustion was but he suspected it was menopause compounded by the realization that life was changing in tangible ways like falling summer leaves in a cold stark autumn.  There were always the rink rat women who hung around the lounge above the hockey arenas who watched the games and then chatted with the players after.  Some found their way into the homes and beds of the various adult male hockey players and occasionally Horace was driven by loneliness to take on one of the rink matrons for the night.  Mostly though, Horace was alone.

            Horace’s job kept him busy and he had moved all over Canada working for the RCMP.  He helped bust drug rings in aboriginal areas and murder cases in Saskatchewan and Nova Scotia.  Horace put in for a permanent post in Ontario when his wife left him after twenty years of marriage.  His wife Madeline had met a real estate investor from the United States and was living in San Diego, California.  Horace never spoke to Madeline but could not refrain from asking his son and daughter how there mother was.  Bill was on the cusp of thirty years of age and Alison was twenty six years old.  Neither of Horace’s offspring was married but each had jobs and busy lives.  They usually checked in with their dad by leaving him messages on his antiquated answering machine at home that had the same recording on it since they were children.

            “Hello…  You’ve reached the Stewart Family… We’re not in but if you’d kindly leave a message, we will be sure to return your call… BEEP.”

            Horace returned home from church the Sunday of his birthday and saw the digital display showing that he had three messages, one from Bill, one from Alison and one from a woman he had met at a bar the week before.  The woman lived near Vaughan and she bred some kind of little dogs that looked like their faces were smashed at birth with a frying pan.  Horace had finished playing his league game and engaged the woman in a conversation on which nation was going to win the gold, silver and bronze in the winter Olympics in Vancouver.  The woman believed that it would be the Russians, Swedes and Czechs.  Horace didn’t agree.

            “The Russians have no work ethic anymore.  Ever since the Soviet Union collapsed, they don’t have anyone there to put a bayonet in their spines and tell them that they will excel or go to the gulag…  Swedes?  Maybe bronze.  Most of them are playing for Detroit and Detroit is suffering this year.  Czechs…  Maybe silver.  Gold is going to Canada.  This is our sport and it is being played in this country in front of thousands of cheering fans.  It will be Canada eh?” said Horace passionately.

            “Well Mr. Mountie… Care to see my pugs?”

            Horace woke up with his arm underneath a woman with more lumps than half day old oatmeal, varicose veins, sags, cellulite and a hairy bush.  Horace was afraid to wake the pug farmer.  Somehow he was able to slip his arm free, dress and escape before breakfast was forced upon him.  The woman had his number but little else.

            “Hey baby…  I had a great time the other night.  Why don’t you give me a call so we can figure out where we’re going for Italian in Toronto …  Gimme a call, babe.  Okay, hope to hear from you soon… BEEP.”

            Next message.

            “Eh Dad…  Was hoping to tell you happy birthday live… Well um…  Hope you’re doing something special today…  Talk to you later,” said his son Bill.

            Next message.

            “Hi daddy…  Happy birthday…  You might be a year older but you’ll always be like Peter Pan.  If you get a chance, call me back… Okay daddy, be good and no fighting,” said Alison.

            Be good and no fighting was what Horace had always said to his children all while they were growing up.  It was his way of saying, I have to leave now and I love you.  Horace was an involved father who saw above average abilities in his two children in the sport of ice hockey.  Horace coached his children locally until they moved on to higher levels of play.  His children’s hockey was his love and hobby.  Bill quit around the age of eighteen even though he could have gone on to play juniors and then Alison went to the states to play division I college hockey for a year, quit and returned home to learn how to play an acoustic guitar and mentored poor students from India and Pakistan in after school programs in Toronto.  Both children quitting hockey crushed Horace.  The final blow was the letter from his wife Madeline when she had moved to the United States to be with her investor.

Dearest Horace,

                                        It is with a heavy heart that I write this letter to you.  There is nothing that you did in particular to warrant my departure.  You are at face value, a good and simple man and it might be the predictability and realization that I will not live forever and may never see, do and experience all the things in life that I had hope to experience when I met and married you as a young woman who was little more than a child.  You’ll have your hockey and other exercise to occupy your time.  Know that I love you even though I have out grown this relationship.  I wish you all the best.

Sincerely,

Madeline

            Horace repeated “all the best” to himself over and over again the night he found the letter and noticed that his wife’s wardrobe had vanished with nearly a hundred pairs of shoes.  Horace marveled at the fete of moving so many things during the course of eight hours.  It was a monumental task that had to have been orchestrated carefully and pulled off with blistering speed.  When Horace returned the house nearly echoed with emptiness.  It had been ten years and the emptiness, loneliness and regret over not being a more well rounded and interesting man, constantly haunted him.

            It was a few minutes past three in the afternoon when Horace returned home from the gym and had picked up a sandwich and soup at Tim Horton’s.  The gold medal match between the United States and Canada was about to begin.  Horace spread the sandwich out on the coffee table and dipped the sandwich into the soup in between swigs of his favorite beer called Rickard’s Red.  Horace was as charged up as he had been as a young boy listening to Hockey Night in Canada on his transistor radio in his bed as a boy when he was supposed to be sleeping.  Horace yelled and clapped and made comments that were inaudible to anyone but his Dalmatian that he named Stripes.

            It was during the beginning of the third period when Bill and Alison showed up together with a cake.  Both were aware that their father was going to be deeply engrossed in the most important hockey game for Canada in years.  Horace greeted his children the way children greet their parents while playing a video game; a head flip for a hello and a raise of the eyebrows.  Bill and Alison sat on the couch beside their father and watched as the seconds ticked away towards a Canadian victory.  With less than thirty seconds to go in the game, the United States pulled their goalie to gain another attacker or a 6 to 5 man advantage.

            “Holy cats!  All they had to do was get the blaming puck oat of the zone.  It’s a simple, basic thing you teach the youngsters at the age of five.  You put a little English on the puck so it dies just before the goal line so there’s no icing, for the love of god.  Now over time…  You know if the Americans win, nobody will give a damn the day after.  They probably got more people watching college basketball right now in the states than this game.  I heard they put all the hockey games on some kind of cable news program where hardly nobody could find it…  Send more men to the damn moon, will ya?  For Pete’s sake…  This will be the national disgrace if we lose this one.”

            Now Bill and Alison really wanted the Canadian national team to win.  Alison knew a few of the woman who had played on the women’s hockey team and was happy to see them win a few days earlier against the United States.  Bill still played occasionally but had become so burned out on the necessity to excel, that his love for the game was all but killed off.  They both saw their father as a one dimensional character as did their mom and had resented the fact that hockey and their ability to excel at the highest level, was what seemed to matter most to their father.  Alison was annoyed with the passion and let her father know indirectly.

            “I sure hope they win the gold for your sake, dad…  I don’t know if the world will still be spinning tomorrow if Team Canada loses.  People are dying in Haiti and Chile from natural disasters but I’m sure god has made Canadian Hockey a priority today,” said Alison sarcastically.

            Horace was taken back.  He never asked for either of his children to come visit him for his birthday and certainly would not have asked for them to come in the middle of the gold medal game.  Horace was on his fourth Rickard’s Red and could not prevent himself from speaking without great emotion instead of thoughtful consideration.

            “That’s the kind of stuff I’d have expected from your mum, eh?  Who asked either one of you to come here today, eh?  I did what I was supposed to as a father and I did what I thought was right.  You kids were never beat or starved or belittled by me or your mum.  My mistake was assuming that hockey meant as much to you as it did to me.  I love the sport for everything it isn’t.  It isn’t work and my whole life ever since I married has been work and the need to provide and hockey has and always been my escape.  I don’t know what your escape is but I hope whatever it is doesn’t kill you…  You two can take your cake and get the hell out of here.  You both felt some sort of guilt or obligation to come see me for my birthday, eh?  Well let me absolve you of any obligatory visits in the future.  I wasn’t and am not what you wanted or expected of me as a father?  Well I have a few dashed expectations when it comes to you two and your mum.  Take your cake and get the hell out of my life.  Let me watch the damn game in peace.”

            With that, Bill and Alison grabbed the cake and left without saying another word or making eye contact with their father.  Horace sat on the couch regretting all he had said to both of his children.  The game resumed in overtime and concluded with a give and go play between Jerome Iginla and Sydney Crosby.  Crosby scored the winning goal.  Horace cried as he sat on his couch.  The win was an empty win.  Horace had driven away two of the most important people in his life because he was hurt.  He wanted to say something else and it came out the wrong way.  It was during the national anthem that Horace got on his computer and sent an email to both his children in attempt to apologize.

Dear Bill and Alison,

                                   There are few days such as today that will live in the memories of Canadians everywhere and it is not one that I will ever forget.  What will stay with me more is how I sent my children out of my home on my fiftieth birthday.  Few days live in our minds and days get blurred and forgotten with the hectic pace of life.  The days that each of you entered this world are and will always be with me as the happiest days of my life.  There I was a brand new parent with Bill weighing almost nothing in my arms, so helpless and fragile and he grew to be a big strong man who is a good man.  Then a few years later came Alison and I held her wondering what I would ever have in common with such a beautiful little girl.  I shared with you the things in life that I loved most.  I’m sorry if you ever felt that your success in hockey determined your worth with me.  I have and do love you because you are a part of me and your mom and are evidence of a time that I loved your mom and she loved me.  I want you to know that I am sorry for what I said today.  If I don’t hear from you either of you for a while, I understand.  I’m not a perfect man and might never be.  I just want you to know that I tried the best I knew how to and I hope you can appreciate me for that.

Love Dad

            Horace shut down the computer and watched the post game interviews along with clips of a beaming prime minister and Wayne Gretsky until he dozed off on the couch.  When Horace woke, the sun had nearly set and trees outside the window stood out against a bluish black sky.  Horace tried to decide if he was going to go play shinny at nine in the evening with the group he had played with for over twenty years.  Horace was feeling a bit too despondent to want to play but far too lonely to just stay home.  In the locker room, men put on their hockey equipment and discussed various points of the game.  Horace just listened.  One of the men asked Horace why he was so quiet.  Horace attributed it to his birthday.  Everyone laughed.  The men warmed up and began to play.  Horace was at the far end of the ice when the door opened and two skaters skated across the ice to get on the bench.  Horace could tell by the way the two carried their bodies who they were immediately.  Tears welled up in Horace’s eyes and he just stood for a moment as his son and daughter waved to him.  The tears dried as Horace raced to the corner to beat the opponent to the puck.  Players began to change and Horace could hear his daughter bang her stick and call for the puck at the blue line.  More than the cake or the gold medal for the nation, playing pick up hockey on a Sunday night with his children was the greatest thing to Horace.  It was an event that will stay with him as a special moment for the rest of his life.

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