How We Dream to be Seen

Heard another thinker

today bemoan the sight

of peasants in a far-

flung country gazing

at their new cell phone

screens, “even at the

dinner table.” He went

on in his keening,

philosophical tone

to expound on the

idea that an actual

reality is better than

a virtual one. Well,

all things being equal,

who can argue that

flesh and breath can

be beat by transmitted

images, words, and

sounds? But if this

thinker had to meet

and then interact

with the absurd

excuses for humanity

who have poisoned

most of my days with

their senseless presence,

he might think differently.

Those who just happen

to meet people they

resonate with and

are attracted to in

their actual lives

can easily believe

that some higher

force placed those

people in their

path for some

grand purpose

or even just to

make them happy.

But for many of us,

that’s not how it

plays out; again

and again, we

waste our days

(and sometimes

nights too) in the

presence of those

who spark only

disgust or can’t

hear our words.

So if the Fates or

Big Daddy in the

Sky keeps casting

our lives with cheap

extras and villians

instead of the

superstars we

all long to to be

loved (or at least

liked) by, then

the heck with

superficial

condemnations

of those

technologies

which show us

that there are

people out there

who can hear our

words and see us

how we dream to

be seen.

 

–By Fyodor Bokowski, author of Mail-Order Annie

 

Pissing on the Old Man’s Grave

sounds extreme and distasteful too

but you didn’t know the old man.

He had an uncanny knack for deceiving

himself a he pursued his own

comfort and pleasure

to the detriment of every

living being he came into

contact with, especially those

he spawned himself, like when

he’d fart aloud proudly in his

old Nash Rambler, but then

after my little brother laughed

and did the same, “dad” reddened,

pulled the car over, and gravely

threatened to stuff Lil’ Mike into the

trunk, until his tiny lips quivered and

he bawled his eyes out and threw up

all over himself, while I sat stoner-faced

and wondered why guys like dad

were ever born and allowed to breed.

Then I became an atheist. But years later,

now an adult, I guilted myself into visiting

dad in his Taj Mahal McMansion off the lake.

We’d sit and he’d talk about politics and religion,

then to bolster his beliefs, he’d always lift a yellow

book up to my face and exhort me to read about the

healing miracles performed by the Virgin Mary at

Fatima or Majigoria, I can’t remember which,

while his latest drug-addled hooker scampered

past us and out the front door, and my now-crippled

brother sat in a wheelchair in a tiny apartment

with my mother. So on one such occasion, I asked

“dad” why he didn’t sell some of his gold coins

or Pre-Colombian vases and take Mike to Majigoria

or Fatima for a healing, and then I’d believe.

Dad blinked, turned purple, then after a long pause,

and with a straight face, he said that Mike was only

faking and could really walk but simply sat in a

wheelchair or crawled on his hands and knees

because he was lazy and liked to be waited on

by mom. But when I mentioned the accident, the

hospital, doctors, and disability check, dad simply

got up and stomped back to his bedroom.

And I sat there wondering why it’s not legal

to kill a creature like him. But sadly, it was already

the age of DNA evidence and CSI, so I quietly decided

that since it seemed to me that neither God nor Karma

could really exist, I’d have to piss on “dad’s” grave

one day, and if somehow the gassy ghost of his former

self rose up and haunted me after, I’d just stare at it

and state with a straight face that what I’d just sprayed

on his grave wasn’t piss at all–just lemonade.