An Irregular Column
by Mykel Board
Mykel's column for MRR 260, in which he explains how he'll never act
"A man does not learn very well. Women, yes, because they are used to bending with whatever wind comes along. A woman, no matter the age, is always learning, always becoming. But a man stops learning at fourteen or so. He shuts it all down. A log is capable of learning more than a man.” -Edward P. Jones
She's in her late 20s... maybe Dominican... maybe from Brazil... with the kind of Latina ass that white girls tsk tsk about objectification but you know they really envy. She's in the middle of the gym, working with a trainer. I'm on the mats, stretching my 75 year old muscles, trying to keep the creaks from popping too loudly, depressed that my body will NEVER be objectified. I watch the girl as I spread my legs and pretend to stretch this gracilis, then that one. This satorious, then that one. This rectus femoris, then that one.
I watch her bend down and grab a barbell. Then, using her own rectus, she stands and holds it several feet from the mats. On the barbell are huge weights. The biggest in the gym... at least two hundred pounds on that barbell... She sets it down and lifts it again. My corpora cavernosa fill with blood and stiffen.
I shower at home, not wanting to deal with the engorgement problem among the sweaty jocks in the lockerroom. Leaving my bathroom shower, I dry myself, dress, and open the day's mail. There it is: in no wrapper at all, the newest MRR.
I flip to the letters section... scanning for my name. There it is: two letters. One's from my pal Marc Rentzer... upbeat and cool. The other, strategically run right before Marc's letter, is from someone complimenting MRR, and PS-ing that “Mykel Board is an old perv.”
Yes! Another dissatisfied customer.
The comment stokes the engine of a thought train. Are there young pervs? When young people do perv stuff, it's experimentation or curiosity. A teenager who jerks off to Victoria Secret catalogs is a victim of raging hormones.
But an OLD PERV? Isn't that redundant? The problem isn't the action but the age. Old people are not supposed to do that. They're supposed to sit in the park and feed pigeons.
In the summer, I see a few in Central Park, feeding pigeons or sitting on a bench slumped over a newspaper. But that doesn't account for most.
A Google images search for “old people” brings up mostly faces. But when the people are doing anything, they're flipping the bird, getting a tattoo, muscle building, fitting into a thong... anything but ACTING THEIR AGE. At least anything but acting the cliché of their age.
Maybe that's WHY the images are there. They're unique, because these older folks DON'T act their age.
Back when I was 30, I wrote a song called When You're My Age You'll Be Selling Insurance. Now, when they're my age, those letter-writing punk rockers will be cashing in their 401Ks.
I doubt if I'll be invited to the Bar Mitzvah of the guy who wrote the old-perv letter. But, if I live long enough, I might go to his graduation from business school.
Scene change to the school I teach in... teacher's lounge between classes.
I ask what April, my favorite colored girl, has been doing lately. She hasn't been at work. I hear she had made it to off-Broadway.
“Mykel,” says a liberal teacher, born and bred within the shadow of the Whitehouse, “you can't say colored. It's like saying Nigger!”
“It is not!” I protest. “Nigger is a pejorative... an insult. Colored People is used by colored people themselves! There is an organization called The NAACP. That's The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. You heard of them? Civil rights for colored people exist because of them. You ever heard of The National Association for the Advancement of Niggers? It's not the same thing at all!”
“That was an organization STARTED by African Americans,” she answers. “THEY can call themselves whatever they want. You're white. You can't do that.”
Her comment is like ACT YOUR RACE.
It gets me thinking. What do people of my race do?
In the summer, I see white people at the beach, trying to darken up. At night, they walk the streets in large chested packs of fratboys and soror-sisters? Boys ugh ugh ughing as they guzzle Bud Light while watching colored guys smash each other up in pro-football. White girls chew gum and worry about how their ass grows to the side and not the back like their more aesthetically pleasing colored counterparts.
Among the people I recognize from a Google search of white people, are Michael Moore, Bill Gates, John McCain. A screen capture from FOX News shows a little white girl crying with the FOX caption “Stolen Pony.” The headline, added after by the picture clipper is: WHITE GIRL PROBLEM?
Many of the pictures make fun of white people. A few defend them. There are almost no photos of people actually DOING anything... except one of a white girl on her knees... taunting a bull.
I spend most of my life with non-white people. During the day, I'm teaching Japanese folks how to talk good. When I travel, I mostly avoid places where white people live. I used to deny being white at all.
“I'm not white. I'm a Jew,” I used to say. Unfortunately, it is now fashionable to LIKE Jews, to bring us into the fold. We're anti-Muslim, ya know? That makes us white.
Well, buckaroos, my trip to Africa brought me a ton of Muslim friends... even to drink with. Just like some Jews (like me) eat pork. Some Muslims drink alcohol. The appeal to me? Most Muslims aren't white.
FLASHBACK: Highschool gym class; Hicksville High School 1960s. Along with study period, it's the class I hate most. Out the back yard... over a fence... to Al's Pizza on Newbridge Road. I'm convinced that my regular consumption of pizza while cutting gym class was responsible for my serious teenage acne. But at least on the days I made it to Al's, I didn't have to suffer through being the last to be picked for the baseball team, football team or any team.
In baseball, when I can't cut out of class, I hide in the outfield... hope that no one hits a ball to me... run away when they do... use my glove to protect my head instead of catching the ball.
“You play like a girl,” one of the jocks tells me. “Why don't you pick flowers or something?”
Flowers? What about flowers? I love flowers. In America, guys never get flower. One of my life's highpoints was visiting a friend in Holland and meeting him at the airport. In his hand was a bouquet of tulips. Girl enough for you?
I ask directions, for G-d's sake. Several times. Is that non-manly enough? It's one of my favorite ways to meet people... and to judge the character of a country.
ASIDE: The worst place to ask directions is Venezuela. Even if you ask in Spanish, the people look right through you... as if you're not there.
Better is Japan, where instead of explaining, people will walk with you a bit, and make sure you're going the right way.
Best is Trinidad, where, when you ask directions the answer will be. “Yeah man, what's your hurry? Let's be havin' a drink first, a little limin'. I'll get you where you want to go. But what's the hurry?” END OF ASIDE
What does asking directions, hating to play sports, and liking flowers say about Men from Mars and Women from Venus?
Way before that book, Samuel Johnson said: Men know that women are an over-match for them, and therefore they choose the weakest or most ignorant.
Weakest? Most Ignorant? I don't think so. I certainly don't want to hang out with... much less fuck... any girl who can't beat me up. But that's not how guys are supposed to think.
Me? I'LL NEVER ACT MY GENDER.
I may be an old pervert. Chronologically I'm old, even if I refuse to act it. A pervert? Well, if we go back to the Latin root it comes from pervertere "overthrow, overturn, corrupt, subvert, abuse..." sounds pretty punkrock to me. So my answer to the guy who called me that? Guilty as charged... and I'm just getting started.
ENDNOTES: [email subscribers (firstname.lastname@example.org) or blog viewers (mykelsblog.blogspot.com/) will get live links and a chance to post comments on the column. Your zines, Cds/records, and... er... private videos... can and should be sent to me at: Mykel Board, POB 137, Prince Street Station, New York NY 10012]
-->Drug your kids for money dept: Does your child have bad moods? Poor school performance? Difficulty focusing? Even if s/he doesn't, could you use some extra cash? "Compensation for time and travel."
Let us drug your kid and we'll pay you!!!
So says a company called Acurian Health that encourages parents to submit their kids to drug testing... and will pay them cash to do so. Get those welfare kids into something productive... like drugs! Go to www.KidsDepressionStudy.com for details.
-->Speaking of act your gender dept.: I'm in love. I went to Brooklyn to see my friends WORLD WAR IX and BLACKOUT SHOPPERS play at the Trash Bar. Opening for them was this band called inCircles. The girl vocalist/guitar player is amazing. She moves on stage like Sam McPheeters or that dancing guitar player in Meryl (sp?). Wow! Best new band I've seen in ages. And that girl, hah! Guitar hero showdown time! No boy is gonna match that!
-->Record stores are not dead dept: Used to be that Bushwick was the SCARY part of NY. Now it's got an organic bakery... scary in a different way. But, it also has a great record store: Heaven Street Records. No CDs, but they have an extremely tolerant buying policy. They're honest, and owner Sean sings barefoot with Cult of Youth. Find 'em on Facebook and ask 'em to carry your records! They probably will.
-->Faith in humanity... even the Swiss dept: The Nation reports that the residents of Wolfenschiessen, Switzerland polled slightly in favor of a nuclear waste facility near their town. An industry group figured that they could get more support by giving money to each citizen who endorsed the facility. Instead, local support for the plan went down. The bribe cut the rate of acceptance in half. Even when locals were offered more than $8,000 each, they turned against the program.
Yow! PUNK ROCK, I'd say.
-->Was the harasser acting her gender? dept: The Associated Press reports that the widow of a New York City police officer says her husband committed suicide because his female supervisor demanded sex from him in exchange for a favorable work schedule and job assignments. The widow is now suing.
According to the suit, the cop's career depended on his "submission to the sexual advances" of his married supervisor.
"Officer Schindler was made to understand that he would suffer tangible detriment in his job, job assignments, working conditions and future prospects if he did not submit to the sexual advances," the suit says.
The pressure was too much and the cop shot himself.
You haven't heard this story, but if the dead cop were a woman, I bet you would have.
-->Google Acts Its Race dept: A new study has found racial bias in ad results from Google. Harvard Professor Latanya Sweeney studied names typically associated with African Americans. She found they were 25% more likely to produce Google ads offering background checks or suggesting the person had a criminal record. Sweeney conducted the study after a search for her own name turned up an ad reading, Latanya Sweeney, Arrested? with a link offering background checks. Sweeney concluded: "There is discrimination in the delivery of these ads."
-->Oh yeah dept: I expect you figured it out. My last column, about taking over the dictatorship of MRR, was an April Fool's column. The endnotes, however, were all true.