Tag Archives: Relationships

From the Sheets of My Memories [NSFW]-ish

My phlegm and apathy dot the ceiling as I cough wickedly from a spartan cot. There is no doubt I am reaching a terminal point in my existence, but for now, I wait in the lobby of transition. No fear is there in that, and why should there be? Living forever is for the naïve. My threadbare life is not the brilliant ensign it once was. I’m tired of waving it.

Capturing my attention was a plucky squirrel skipping on a potentially lethal wire outside. As it’s oblivious to grounding, it lives to see the other pole. I look up at my medical masterpiece. I’ve heard of this before, when people become critical of life before they die.  Small animals become as interesting as a war declaration. Nostaglia is understandable, but it should be for the right memories.

My youngest daughter, Chastity, appears at the door. Standing half-way through the threshold, her hand slides up the jamb. It’s quality time with the old man.

“Hey,” I face her. “Come on in.”

Taking up a stool beside the bed, I look her over. Where do I start?

“Your mother was a good women. I… we did very well in not hurting each other.” The shifting of posture was time to phrase a statement more fulfilling. “We knew each other: our habits, our personalities, our histories. It worked for what it was. You and your sister are now married, and successful from what I can tell. As far as rules are concerned, I give myself a gold star for doing what others wanted.”

“You did a fair job, Dad.” She is a tough customer. I did well with that one.

“From a personal perspective, though, I’ll only regret one thing I didn’t do.” My sigh came out while rubbing the skin above my forehead. Thinking about it is painful enough, but this wasn’t going to be any picnic either. There was no use in delaying it any further though.

“When you were a small child, I had to work nights to pay some of the bills. Now, I’m not upset about that. We did what we had to do, and made it out fine but there was a time during the night which I would stop at a diner off of 44. I’d have a cup of coffee and unwind for a bit. That’s where I met Jessica.

Jess was the manager of a catering company out of Tulsa, and she’d often do the same thing after closing up shop. We’d sit for a good hour or so and talk. Sometimes we’d talk about our spouses, our jobs, our dreams, our politics, and so on. She didn’t have anywhere to go, even though she was married. Her husband was a driver for a beer distributor and was rarely home.

Now that I look back on it, I fell in love with her, a real love with feelings your mother and I never shared. She was a short stack, but every bit of her was filled with energy. There was this laugh. It was the oddest thing. When I delivered a good joke she’d put her hand on her forehead and laugh at the ceiling. For my cleverness, I was rewarded with the bumps underneath her shirt. It only embarrassed me the first few times. After that, I saw it as a bit of a turn on.

I started to think of ways to get her to laugh like that. Cheap thrills. I even bought a joke book to help me out. Most nights I’d count down the intervals between delivering the jokes so she wouldn’t notice. If she ever caught on, she didn’t give me any clues. Maybe she enjoyed it? We both were in a lover’s purgatory. She was married; I was married. Neither one of us was particularly enthusiastic about our better halves. I started to want her in the worst way, but kept my vows all right.

Since I’ve been put here in hospice, I’ve replayed those nights several times in my head. I will miss that: to be so close to a woman you can smell the exact spot where she put on her perfume. The nape of her neck. She had dark hair that would slope off to the right showing a slight bump. It drove me wild. I wanted to kiss that bump several times. I was a mad dog on a chain.

It gave me so much feeling. I was hooked on the the most intense lust I’ve ever felt in my life. Probing her eyes for any inkling of sin,  I found us pawing each other on a humid, Summer night. The salt of her hips rolled on my tongue. She’d gasp lightly as I nuzzled between her thighs. Those thighs. To me they were warmed silk. My mind tormented me with that for years. I would have remained in her lap as long as she wanted.

That’s what I regret the most, Chastity. I regret not taking her, or at least trying. Every part of my intuition said to do so. We’d enjoy ourselves for a night, or two, or more. We’d be happy for once.”

My daughter squirms in her chair. To be honest, I never spoke of being sexual or sexuality to my children before. Deep lines arc around her thin mouth. Duty calls for presence, not participation, however a cynical mind can mislead the most sharp of hosts. My mind deceives me. This isn’t disgust I’m watching. It’s restraint.

“This has happened to you. Hasn’t it, Chas?” My narrow-lidded eyes spy nonverbal cues.

Shaking lightly, her brows furrow and chin tucks up in a severe overbite. A floor couldn’t be that interesting to stare at it so much. Maybe she’d faint like a goat, too? The best she comes up with is a terse “no.”

“You’re lying to me. I can tell by the twitching of your left eye. You’re anxious about something. Me talking about my fantasies has triggered a guilty party in you. Who is he? Who is… she, maybe? I’m not going to be here when you come around. What are you hiding?”

Closing her eyes, she moves her throat up and down in agony. “Him!” A sharp bark with an immediate decrescendo bounces off the walls. My release of anger sets my eyes in a droopy fashion. It feels good to be right. Being smug feels better. In an effort to comfort her, I pick up her wrist as best I could. For a moment, I didn’t know what to say. I wonder if straying was in the family blood? If it was, how many of my kin felt the same way? Nobody ever talked about it. Maybe we are all ashamed? With a bit of effort, I deliver my last words to her.

“Devour him!” My grip is lost; I roll over to stare out the window.

© 2014 by Corvidae in the Fields, all rights reserved

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Promulgated

The song “Black Sunshine” was apropos as Marissa floored it down the 10. She couldn’t let a freak storm impede the progress of her Shelby Cobra on its way to destiny. This was her date with death, if it came down to it. Traffic had to go. All this weaving was making for an even more miserable experience. Was she trying to stop a catastrophe for these people? Sometimes she wondered its worth, especially with all the persecution.

Being a manipulator of the forces around her was still a problem for those raised on too many fairy tales. Good and evil always begin in a neutral state. Those who use their mystical attributes take them down that road. Her father, Hogan, would often prance into her study with, “Oh-hoo-hoo, are you a good witch or a bad witch?” Such was his nature to be cheeky, and often used common society to irritate her to no end. Teenage angst, being what it was, would always seem to give him the satisfaction of a reaction to his facetiousness.

Those were easier times for the young sorceress, up in the Superstitions. It was a veritable paradise compared to the current state of affairs. Time was endless and there was always a centuries-old book to crack open. Scribbles could dance with the touch of her fingers even when they were much older than the country she called home. “The trade was eternal,” Hogan would say.

He left when she was 20. It may have been just a matter of independence, a going of one’s own way. That was understandable to a certain extent, but to never get back in contact? She couldn’t think of anything she did to turn him away. A second pair of hands would be well received right about now. There were countless, terribly dangerous users on the isolation planes that could peel the crust off this planet as if it were an orange and with little effort.

Signs were everywhere, but usually explained away with science and reason. Two new moons, sinkholes everywhere, the Flight of the Phoenix, and this unending thunderstorm meant something more sinister than mere traditional explanations. A male member of the tribe was resurrecting himself from suspension. This was a serious Council infraction and whoever it was needed to be put down like a rabid dog. She read no one was willing to return to their assigned dimension.

Turning off on a county road, she skidded left of center and back in time to miss a rig driver laying on his horn for all it was worth. Slick as the road was, it wasn’t nearly as perilous as the destination. A steadiness came over her as she pushed the needle past 80 mph. Everyone she knew, including herself, would be shot to Hell without doing all in her power to get there.

The reception square lay in a remote part of Arizona. Inconspicuousness favored sparsely populated areas. Convicted members would have to rest and regain their strength from such a brazen move. More than likely they would hole up in a cave or derelict house for a few days with their thoughts and motives.

Surrounded by sagebrush and sand, the platform disguised itself as slate rock partially buried in the Earth. Saguaro and yucca obscured it further from the road, but the inter-dimensional charge gave it a light white halo for the trained eye. Marissa was in the right spot; she’d soon find out who she risked life and limb to stop.

The Council of the Dogs was completely unaware of the happenings in Arizona. A New York committee spent that time arguing over the regulations of their charter, which have been known to take years on more than one occasion. She was the point of contact for the desert southwest, which meant little to nothing in the eyes of bigger fish. After three ignored missives, she decided to enforce the will of the Council herself.

 A tall cactus made for the best impromptu cover she could afford. Holding on to the relief of arriving early, rain beat down soaking her to the bone. Through stringy pink hair she surveyed the landing site intently, even though she wanted to fly far away from it. It was too late to have a change of heart.

The glow ceased and the rain gave way as a peal of thunder ripped a hole in the desert before her. A white eye with large black pupil shimmered and curls of darkness gracefully slid out into this world as the passenger came close to the exit. Marissa thought of the old 1950s horror films with their excessive use of dry ice and water. Someone’s science fair project won first place.

A sinister sight emerged from the portal and fell to the ground. Such was the way of  forbidden rituals. Even the most powerful of magicians would be weakened by it. Some fare better than others, but there was always a negative impact on the user. This was her best chance to gain the upper hand. Shouts as good as any law enforcement came forth as she charged the spent figure on the ground.

“In the name of Alexia Oroyo and the Council, I am here to enforce the rules set forth in the tribal charter. Your sentence was to be served as promised, and reintroduction is a clear violation of said promise. No exile is to return from their suspension unless granted explicit permission by the Council itself. Under these conditions, I must either escort you back to your imprisonment or destroy you. That choice will rest with your actions.” It sounded authoritative enough, even if she had no experience with either.

“Are you a good witch?” Inquired the fatigued warlock, “or a bad witch?” He couldn’t quite raise himself up off the floor, but was trying regardless.

Marissa knew that voice. So long had it been, the sound of her father moved her to tears. This was the last person she’d expect to meet at a charter breach rendezvous. Why was he in limbo to start? It certainly would explain his disappearance, but the new question was a little harder to answer.

“Dad! Why are you here? Why were you there?! What’s going on? Tell me! I don’t want to kill you, but that’s not saying I won’t.” Patience wasn’t the strongest of her virtues.

Swallowing hard and gaining moisture back in his mouth, Hogan tried to explain. He wanted to lay out the whole story, but could only manage “needed to see you.” With this he took in slow deep breaths and looked at her for a reaction.

No amount of training could prepare a member for this situation. Sifting through her thoughts she lifted her father and supported him on the way to the car. Many people make poor choices; she was willing to gamble this time. The Council certainly wouldn’t approve.

© 2014 by Corvidae in the Fields, all rights reserved

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Saturday, February 15th, 2014

I tried not talking about it, but observed holidays aren’t easy to dodge. Valentine’s Day came and went without much of a to-do. That’s primarily because I fell asleep when I got home from work and didn’t wake up until midnight. How hopeless of a romantic could I be? Very hopeless, I assure you.

Earlier, I wrote out a rather sincere holiday wish on my other social media:

“Today is Valentine’s Day. As such I wish all that are in love, happy, and content a wonderful day regardless of orientation. As long as you’re happy with your arrangement, I’m happy for you.

Tonight, though, I raise a glass to the singles. The independents who refuse to let society tell them what to think or how to think politically, socially, or otherwise. I toast to you for seeking your own way, thick with the fear and hatred of others who think you’re an affront to their way of life. I salute those who know what it means socially to suggest a different viewpoint than what is popular. Your mile is just as important as any special interest.”

Now that may have ruffled a few feathers for one reason or another, but the people that truly know me know I won’t bite unless provoked. I don’t go around with the intention of picking fights, but if I can’t say what’s on my mind it gets ugly. That was also on the heels of some people digging into me for suggesting women are human and are susceptible to bad habits like bossiness. Not all “bossiness” is misinterpreted leadership, people. Cut the crap.

Once I shook off my bonds of slumber, I grabbed a pint down at the bar. There wasn’t much to be had for the likes of me, except a game of darts and a Doris Day movie. I did, however, get my first comment on a book review from the dating site:

“hi, i have a business proposal that will benefit both of us.If you are interested, email me to my personal email [redacted] for more details. Please note that chatting is not allowed, only email communication.”

I’m not sure about you, but I think I was just propositioned like a John. That’s an odd feeling, being thought of as a customer. In fact, I really dislike being thought of as a customer in many situations. After a little fiddling, I was able to remove it. People would start to get the impression it was abandoned. If anything, it needs a whole biographical rewrite. I’ve been known to scrap and start from scratch multiple times.

Also, a woman complimented me on my cologne for the first time, albeit the cashier at fast food restaurant. All together, I thought I handled it rather graciously. It makes for awkward ordering, but what can I say? I’m McIrresistible, ladies. Maybe that should be the new form of speed dating? Dinner and a show.

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Sunday, February 9th, 2014

Dear Citizens of WordPress Province,

I know it’s highly irregular of me to post three times on a weekend, but this needs to be done for my reflection. Not in the mirror, mind you, but mental reflection. I’m not that vain. This is much like my earlier post about the dream, which I have a vague idea now what I was troubled over. I think I am concerned over making the wrong move again. The two roommates were a thought over the people that I meet in my life. The two were actually one, and the second was skeptical of showing all of themselves to new people. Guarded, if you will.

Right, now for the real point. I set up a profile on a niche dating site. For right now, I won’t specifically identify it but it’s not match.com, OKCupid, or eHarmony. As an aside, the eHarmony starter kit depressed me so much I couldn’t finish it. I read in between the lines way too much, and the “encouraging” lines translated just so to the point I felt like a sorry sack of crap. This place is a tiny website that scares away people who don’t like to read. I’ve given you all the information you need to figure it out on your own.

It has been over three weeks since I started the profile, but the return hasn’t been much of anything. I put everything in its right place, even several short but meaningful reviews of books I’ve read over the years. That’s not to say I was expecting anything, but there it is. The point is there were no corners cut in the effort I put into it. I’ve always thought I haven’t read as much as I should, but looking at other people I’m a little ahead of the game. That’s disappointing, not reading.

Last night, as I finished my flash fiction and laundry, I received a small two-sentence message from another user.

“Biting profile words; I’m hooked. Tell me more, tell me anything.”

As far as I could tell, she wasn’t a spammer. The reviews looked genuine and there weren’t any links to other websites. She was from Oregon, which I later ran the numbers to be approximately 2,500 miles (~4,000 km) away from the Fields. Maybe she mistook the OH for OR?

It was at 6:00pm, and I decided to think about what to say. After all, what do I have to lose from responding with a well-thought out email? By the time I was ready to write, she vanished. It was no more than 17 hours after she said something. I don’t think anything less than 24 is rude, do you? The profile was deleted with no way to respond. I didn’t realize what happened, until I screamed “how the Hell do you respond on this thing?!” That’s when I saw the small-print notification.

What was it that made her bail so quickly I wonder? Was it the time lag or the distance? I can relate to the mileage. All of my “matches,” and that’s in quotes because they’re not seemingly good fits, are on the coasts. That’s a long way, brother. Maybe the whole idea really brought her down?

Whatever it was, I hope she finds what she’s looking for.

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The Un10n

The thirtieth of March, five hundred and eighty-two Post Congregationem (P.C.), saw a unity the first off its kind. Syler, a fifth-generation android, was finally permitted to wed his long-time companion: the Molecularly Operated Artificial Intelligence System (MOAIS). They were more than grateful to receive High Council’s decision and began the ceremony that day. The cybernetic couple had been planning this for decades, and truth be told, they thought it would never come. Plenty of  humans thought the idea was either too insulting or too dangerous to permit and lobbied Council for years in preventing the two, among several others, from receiving the same courtesy as their makers.

The two had entered the global spotlight as poster children for what was informally known as “Mechanized Marriage,” and as such were accused of everything from being disobedient to their masters to revolutionaries establishing anti-human norms before staging a hostile takeover of the planet. Too many people pointed to the apocalyptic age that spawned a new era, the Great Gathering. Leading up to that time robots were all synchronized by a demented sociologist, Dr. Menenda Blunk, who thought that population control was imperative to a more prosperous world and best meted out by emotionless minions. Extermination, or what Dr. Blunk liked to call “reformatting,” drug out for a better part of a decade as humans fought countless waves of semi-sentient machines all babbling about a happier humanity while trying to kill them.

These arguments, full of fiery rhetoric and conviction, would not hold out in the end. It took the Council months to accept the appeal let alone try it, but it was Chancellor Fiixberady who finally said, “I may be painfully gullible, or simply a hopeless romantic, but maybe we should err on the side of love this time instead of doubt.” With its unusually aesthetic appeal, the chromatext verdict was transmitted to MOAIS via skylight. A beautiful sight it was, columns of white, azure, rose, gold, and spring all flickering in a sequence most palatable to android and AI alike. The war was over.

In a widely-broadcasted event, hundreds gathered outside Pendragon Station to observe history being made. A few chose to protest, as was their right under the Articles of Humanity, but little good it did. The stage was set for a new view on existence and being. Humans were demonstrating they could be something other than perpetually afraid. The moment was commemorated by MOAIS with a multi-colored LED blinking out the chromatext sent to her that very day and by Syler with a gold band bearing the inscription “intrepidus homines sunt.”

Mankind is fearless

© 2014 by Corvidae in the Fields, all rights reserved

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Sunday, January 5th, 2014

The Tubes are as 80s to me as the fake-animal-print clad David Lee Roth, and provide Hallmark wisdom in a way only the era could deliver. I did tip my hand too much in the previous post about the strip club experience. It’s not easy talking about such personal memories, being that the Internet is so vast, but if I were on my deathbed would I appreciate not saying anything? This post isn’t going to candy-coat anything. If you are the type to either be easily offended or insulted, I strongly advise you to visit another day. I’m not the type of person to tolerate bullshit either, and this won’t be up for debate. This is simply a story of how my life played out on one Saturday afternoon in April of 1997.

I was 18, and it was a few days after my best friend’s 18th birthday. His rambunctious mind could only think of one thing, and one thing alone: strippers. He was always after ideas sexual in nature: Playboys (for the articles, my ass), video pornography, John Valby aka Dr. Dirty et al. They revolved around him in an electron fashion, only drawing closer to the nucleus with each passing moment. There seemed a sort of Christmas excitement that ran across his boyish face when he talked about it, and he spoke of it for weeks. I knew that day was coming, even though I already had deep reservations about it. Most people don’t give me enough credit for my intuitiveness, but it’s definitely there. Maybe it’s for personal use only? Regardless, I was being muscled into his quasi-wingman as we ventured to a larger city for the venue.

There was a feeling in the pit of my stomach the whole way there. It was not something that sounded great in the first place, but like usual, I felt coerced by societal norms (e.g. “this is what you’re supposed to be like: dumb and horny,” or “why not? Are you in the closet?”). We ended up in a strip mall in Toledo, where I handed over a matinée price of $7.00 to a short man with greasy ginger hair kept in a long pony tail. The insides were painted black, lit with black lights. UV light accented all the fluorescent materials present with a thin veil of smoke drifting from the seats to the stage. It wasn’t too long ago that people could smoke indoors.

The first stripper was a petite blond with cropped hair to match. Her gaunt figure danced upon the pole to a three-set of Beatles songs. “Sexy Sadie” was her stage name, and the bits of metal from her piercings held tightly to her b-cup breasts, glinting every now and then when she’d spin. After “Helter Skelter” was over, she bounded right up to us. Being that my friend was the cause of all this, I let him buy her the brink which turned out to be apple juice. Even though we weren’t of legal drinking age, there wasn’t any alcohol on the premises. I suppose I could see why. Drunk men and naked women could present a problem. My friend and I were also required to have a drink in front of us at all times, and we chose fountain beverages for the free refills. I still remember vividly how bright and pink my plastic daiquiri glass was. It was cheap, exactly like how I felt.

After a few minutes of light discussion, we were hit up for some additional dancing at the booths across the stage. Fortunately, my friend could not turn the offer down and went promptly over there with her. I was left to watch the other two women perform their sets. I began to fidget, trying to keep a calm exterior about myself and pretend I was enjoying it. There were a few other men around, smiling at me. They were having a good time. I wasn’t, not in the slightest. I felt like I was being used, not only by the dancers but by my friend. He didn’t want to go alone, but I didn’t have that many friends. I didn’t want to cause a rift because I would feel awful in a strip club.

The air felt thicker and denser as time inched along. I felt snake-like coils move around my face and head, whispering offers of faux-affection for $40 a turn. I was even startled when an African-American dancer slid her green-tipped fingers down my shoulders. She approached me from behind. So, I never knew she was there until I was jumping an inch out of my chair. I know they meant no real harm, though. They were just trying to earn a paycheck.

So often had I pined for female ardor, it made for many a lonely night. This sadness brought to me by my peers was heightened with whispers of high school girls not quite out of earshot, providing quite the venue of criticism from weight to attractiveness to creepiness. Everyone did it though. There were several males who would make themselves feel better at my expense, but it always stung worse to hear it from the girls. I could be jumped or clotheslined or socked right in the face, but it was their words that would ring in my ears for years. Admittedly, that day in April was the first time being in the presence of naked women. It wasn’t real though. None of it was real. All of it was a delicately-wrapped lie for a price, a group of women trying to sweet talk me only for what I had in my wallet. I didn’t have a whole lot of it to start. It hurt; it hurt like the Devil. I felt ashamed, and tried to overcome a burning face at the notion of having to buy my affection. What the Hell did I ever do to require buying love?

Were they whores? Were they sluts? Only if you include the audience and me. Whether it was for money, lust, or my desperate need for belonging, we all sold ourselves at some price. My area of interest just happened to be the size of a planet, instead of a Marlboro-tainted skin shop. Those buyers and suppliers were not on my list, as I had other business to attend to. After my friend got his inaugural lap dances, we folded tent and left. Rarely have I ever felt relieved as I did that day, with the slight wind at my face and a drive through the fields of Ohio.

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Sunday, December 8th, 2013

Snow is not my enemy. I may have an aversion to the powdery, white precipitation but no real disdain. Ice, however, is my sworn nemesis as it makes the land slick with a Devilish sheen. Its only purpose is to frustrate any plans to leave the house, as my habitual affliction of cabin fever flares up like a match head. I do get lonely, and in such a frigid territory as the fields, Winter only makes it worse. The Christmas season doubly so. With my tongue-possibly-placed-in-my-cheek, there was a suggestion of a bottle of Jack Daniels and circus acrobatics on an overpass Christmas Day.

Much to my dismay, I only drive 300 feet to notice the freezing drizzle making command of my vehicle uncertain. Like a sensible person, I return to the house. I’ve heard two dispatches for emergency vehicles in the last hour. Some aren’t so sensible. Falcor skated in an unannounced Ice Capades of terror and sadness, as I creep home only being out for a mere five minutes. Tonight could have been the night I fell into a hilarious romantic comedy with the person others always say I would find. Frankly, if you know the name and the whereabouts of this woman, I demand you stop holding out on me. This isn’t the Price is Right; I’m not playing Cliffhangers again.

All wasn’t totally lost, as I kept busy with interior maintenance. Most of the day’s activities included the dismantling of the remnants of a finished basement, which had outlived its useful life several decades ago. Some basements were made for fun; mine was not. Utility basements should not be pushed into an awful career choice such as host or entertainer. It can only lead to the metaphorical unemployment line. Stand-up philosopher. Brilliant!

As for my writing, well, this is the first time in a week I’ve tried to put anything down. My blog is fancied a journal of sorts, as I peck away at something constructive, but I do want to write something a little more accessible. From my end, it’s to wonder how I relate to the rest of the world. The best I could ever deduce is to write fiction, as cliche as that sounds. What else does a single guy in the middle of a soulless land have to offer? However, ideas don’t always come to me in the vivid form I enjoy. That is to say they arrive from some ethereal plane in which I often think, “that would be fantastic!” Mood, life, and people often buffet me and consume my thoughts for days on end. That is where nothing gets done. I can definitely see why people enjoy muses.

Forget the dime, anyone spare a thought? Ha!

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We’re Not Gonna Take It Anymore

Ah, the 80s in all of its absurd pageantry. What a laugh riot that was. This isn’t to diminish the acoustic contributions of Twisted Sister, rather laugh at our zeal in exploration. There comes a point in discovery when you are so eager to do everything that you may blush about it years later. I never thought Zubaz were a great idea. Ever.

The theme is quite old, a rebellion of new desires versus the established norms. Every generation wants a voice. Everyone wants to be noticed. This isn’t new at all. America was established because a handful of people said, “we’re not going to take it anymore.” Peter Finch in Network gave us the unforgettable line, “I’m as mad as hell, and I’m not going to take this anymore!” There has, and always will be, a breaking point in the tolerance of others and other beliefs.

This leads me to think about all of my past relationships. I’m not an old timer here, but old enough to consider myself a veteran of the arena. I’ve met all sorts of people in many situations. Sometimes people would frustrate me to the point of misanthropy, but these days I think I’ve been able to adopt a philosophy of de todo ha de haber en el mundo, or “there must be all types in the world.”

Norman Douglas once said, “to find a friend one must close one eye — to keep him, two.” I find this statement horribly misleading and the gateway to being a doormat. If there was ever a situation where I had to look the other way, it better be something small like picking one’s nose in public or breaking wind on the ride home.

There’s definitely a line between accepting people for their faults and overlooking toxic behavior. If people want to benefit from my company, which is indeed a perk (I’ll explain later), then they’re not going to use me for their own gain. That’s where I draw the line, even if it is merely saying an insult to elevate your self-worth. That’s it; you’re done.

As previously mentioned, there are perks to having good relations with me. I’m one of the few that move my friends. I’ve moved roughly 15 friends on 20 different occasions in my lifetime, and it probably won’t stop there. I’ve been known to jump start dead car batteries, pick up dinner tabs, donate goods, taxi friends to and fro, and other things people need an extra hand with. This isn’t behavior to be taken for granted. Unfortunately, there are some people who do and others that will go beyond that.

I can say in my experience that I have never, not even once, regretted walking away from a bad friendship or relationship. There are plenty of toxic people just waiting to steal your time and use your good nature. There is absolutely no need to be a doormat to them. As a friend of mine once said, “people are either flowers or weeds, and you should only water the flowers.”

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My City by the Bay (Chapter 4, Part 4 of 4)

The Dip

Love loves complication. Love loves drama. Love loves attention. One day you want to nestle your head on her chest, the next you’re looking for an apartment far away from her. For as painful as it is, this condition has to be for the best. Continuity and consistency are rules for robots, and no one’s a machine… yet. That’s to the wealthy’s chagrin anyway; they would be the only ones to benefit from it.

At the heart of humanity, being human, is change. Without it a person becomes obsolete like a Commodore 64 or 8-track tape player. Sure, they’re fun for the sense of nostalgia. People would like something more modern for the day-to-day activities though.

Sig’s ride jostled with each imperfection in the road. He looked up at the ceiling ads and sighed, “what am I doing?” This was some sort of defeat, but there wasn’t any definition to it. He hadn’t actively done anything to destroy the relationship, but wasn’t the greatest proponent of it either. Who was to blame? No one, he supposed. Chrissy and he were just two incompatible people hoping to cross over. He was out helping family, while she was in need of most of it.

With a little anxiety, he rolled together stems of the bouquet purchased in Old Town. Cellophane became a cathedral radio, crackling as he adjusted to his favorite station: nervous. The last time they spoke was at 100 decibels. Love loves scorched Earth, too.

Life in the Dip felt like living in a hole. In truth, it was a depression in the land but also acted as an oubliette. Deriving itself from oublier, French for “to forget,” many lost recollection of the area and its residents. Unlike Old Town and North Harbor, people in the Dip kept to themselves and didn’t make a fuss. Heavy notes of defeat and resignation drifted through the neighborhood as sweeping winds carried litter down its streets.

Christine’s house stood as a fortress from all that was outside of her personal sphere of influence. Not even the smog of Uptown could penetrate the small, ecru bungalow of Stapleton Row. Mostly-plumb pickets poked the atmosphere with an air of defiance and smacked of rough carpentry. Sig was not the best craftsman in the world, but it worked for what they could afford.  It was better suited for filtering plastic bags anyway. Cheap pine is serviceable baleen.

Bottles from Sig’s “Alcolympics” disappeared since his departure. His favorite past time was the “beer put,” which involved launching an empty beer bottle like three-pound shot from the porch. The unbroken bottle furthest from the front door won. And what did they win? Another beer, of course, however the crisp shatter of glass was a satisfying runner up.

Sig pushed back the front gate, and it drooped to the right as if to say “oh God, not you again.”  This was the first time he was back in months, only enough time to settle into his new digs, yet crossing the threshold felt like a violation itself. In a strict sense, it was trespassing, but this was beyond any technical interpretation.

The porch was different only in the sense it had been cleared of various debris from unfinished projects. She let a whole flat of petunias wilt one year, but something prompted its removal. Change is good, but change is scary. The eyes of an emotionally worn man turned up to peer at the knocker which was polished, yet not entirely wiped clean. An oak tree in the front lawn waved its shadow on the beast as if to warn of bad ideas.

“What is going on here?” Fingers touched the hastily buffed brass ring attached to a lion’s mouth, which gave way to space a few seconds later. In its place stood a stern looking man in a white tank top and a cell phone.

“Can I help you?” the wall of a man was at least getting down to business in a semi-cordial manner. Tonality indicated, however, Sig’s reputation preceded him. There wasn’t much room for a favorable opinion.

“I… uh… I’m here to see Christine Taureano. Is she in by any chance?”

“She went shopping. Sor…” The obviously lie was quickly foiled when a sprightly, small figure came up from behind the slab of meat and gave him a kiss.

“Who is it, swee… oh, hey Sig.”  Disappointment became palpable at that moment, and the energy drained from her form. This was obviously not the day she wanted to break the news to him. She might have been banking on never seeing him again. It was probably the lack of control over the situation which carried the most dissatisfaction.

“Yeah, hey. I was hoping you still had my box of clothes. It could come in handy down the road.” Yeah, for when he wanted to burn an effigy of Sergeant Beefhead standing next to him.

“Oh! Yeah, no problem.” The softball was smacked with so much fervor, one would think nothing happened at all. There were a few seconds of awkward silence that followed between the new beau and Sig. That was nothing compared to the awkward silence following him home that night. Chrissy returned with a faded egg box signifying the end of the round. Sig got a consolation prize.

“There! That should be the last of it.” Smiling during a meeting of this nature could be considered an insult, but the one riding up her face was probably meant to be such. The two lovebirds probably met within the last month or so. Her benevolence was a good way to avoid spoiling the honeymoon. “So, what’s with the flowers?”

“Oh, these. I happened to meet a florist today and she wanted to know if you would like them.” No one would have ever bought that. What good would it have done regardless?

“No, thanks.”

That hurt more than it should. They both claimed the fire was gone more often than he could remember, but this was it. Sig pursed his lips at the bitter end of book he didn’t want to finish. She actually found someone new.

“OK, then. I’ll see you around.” Lingering any further would result in someone either getting physically or emotionally battered. A quick exit was the way to salvation.

“I sure hope not,” followed quietly thereafter.

For all the enticing aromas, the flowers refused to look at him at the bus stop. They only stared at the street wanting someone else to plant them in a vase. Sig knew that was only his perception, but it seemed real enough at the moment. An attitude like that only gets the trash can. An attitude like his only gets the curb. It was the price of being himself.

The egg carton showed wear from being thrown about the house. Rough in feel, only the dried adhesive provided competition. Failed duct tape clung to one end of the box as if to document some sort of effort in the storage process, but maintenance had a lot to be desired. Sig tucked the flaps back and peeked into the faded darkness.

Various garments felt fresh air for the first time in ages. Underwear, bowling shirts, and the cut-off jeans he used for mowing were among various articles tossed about like a wild sea of dyed cotton. Bailing out the container, he noticed something sunk at the bottom of the box. Diving deeper, it became apparent Davy Jones found a picture of them when they first started seeing each other.

Sig looked up at the sky and added a few more drops in the ocean.

© 2013 by Corvidae in the Fields, all rights reserved

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Acceptance Overdue

After my last non-literature post, I had to think (sometimes aloud) about what life means to me, and conversely, what I mean to life. Outside of one’s self, the concept of life and living is owned by the rest of the Earth’s population. It would seem important to acknowledge the difference. With that difference, one also must acknowledge any difficulties that comes with it.

For decades, I have looked for lasting connection with people. There are a handful (considering the population of the Earth) that I consider to be “successful” in the sense of longevity. As time marches on, I’ve had to relinquish hope on plenty. Their lives are just as important to live on their terms as mine to be a part of it. I’ve also considered my love life a sore subject, which also needed reflection.

I cannot help but agree that we’re all bombarded with notions of love and romance from a very early age. The proliferation of media in the late-20th and early-21st is truly a remarkable invention, but it doesn’t come without any drawbacks. I think we’ve been lost in a mire of ideas for some time now, and only recently wise to it. This ties in with my previous blog post about blood types. All the information and philosophy in the world isn’t meant to be thrown together into an individual’s mind. It conflicts too often, and the person  needs to decide what they should be in a cohesive manner.

Granted, this isn’t meant to be a rule or law. This is merely a recommendation. Far be it from me to advocate a censorship of sorts for everyone, but everyone should be a filter of their own. As my ninth grade Algebra I teacher once said, “there’s more than one way around a fence.”

So, what would I consider myself? I’m a bachelor with my own itinerary. I’m trying to let go of any notion of romance and relationships of that sort. I think it’s only for the best regarding my stress, and ultimately, my health. It’s not easy to accept such a position, but my history speaks otherwise. My actions tell my story, even if I don’t want to listen. It’s difficult and takes a Hell of a lot of courage to be alone. However, I don’t think the notion should be feared. Instead of keeping that dog outside, it’s time to let it in and give it a good bath.

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