An Irregular Column
for MRR 310
by Mykel Board
SCENE 1: It's a pug. Like the obnoxious little bug-eyed runt in MEN IN BLACK. This one's not black. It's yellow. Piss colored... not a Guinness piss... a Bud-lite.
Attached to one of those expanding leashes, it meanders across the sidewalk, tripping up students, office workers, and anyone else who uses the sidewalk to actually go someplace, rather than sniff around trying to find a place to shit. At the other end of the leash is a young woman. She wears a long black coat. The ends of a brown scarf show over her back next to the perfectly cut edge of her black hair. On her head, is a white furry bell. Not an actual ringing bell, but a bell-shaped hat that would do DEVO proud.
That's all I can see of the girl. Of the dog, I can see more... full view. Sniffing garbage, staircase edges, the shoes of passing pedestrians. Its little chopped-off tail sticks straight into the air. I can see its gray-brown sphincter. An anal stargate. Closed up tight. Clean as a Disney movie.
But wait..there's a little pressure. A tiny bulge in that chocolate spiral. The pointed tip of an emerging turd. The dog stops and squats. There on the sidewalk, as if squeezed from a Crest tube, first one, then the other: two perfect turds, the second slightly shorter than the first.
The woman removes a plastic bag from the leash end. She puts her hand inside, turns the bag inside out, wearing it like a glove. Then, she scoops up the two brown sausages, unfolds the plastic around them, ties the bag shut, and drops it in a litter bin. That's not very interesting.
What IS interesting is, when the dog stands up, its tiny little anus is still perfectly tight, and clean. Just like new. After I take a shit, I spend half a roll of toilet paper cleaning up. Sometimes more... depending on the beer brand of the previous night. Sometimes I need to wipe up my back and down my legs. Ripping the paper, wiping up, down, front to back, back to front. The white paper turns brown, no matter where its whiteness touches.
And here's this little mutt, two perfect pieces, anus clean as Whistler's Mother. It's not fair.
Then again, there's something special in that act of wiping. Something satisfying, like an accomplishment. The outside of my body covered with the inside... like my heart on my sleeve... controlled and made nasally presentable to the outside world by rubbing with soft white paper. Maybe I have the better life after all.
Cut to scene 2: I stand outside the St. Barnaby's Middle School playground. It's the first warm day. The youngsters have shed their heavy coats and run back and forth teasing and testing each other. In one corner, several skinny guys in bluejeans flip a haki sak back and forth: Adidas-to-Nike-to-Nike. Right in front of me. A group of girls in pleated dresses huddle over a cellphone, backs to the oblivious teacher,
One youngster, skin the color of chocolate milk, stands against the school wall. He's the only one wearing shorts. His thin yet adolescently muscular legs disappear appetizingly into his silver shorts. He puts one leg in front of the other, as if posing for a Greek sculpture. I imagine the callipygian youth naked, turning. I imagine his sphincter, much-wiped, but probably eternally closed to me. I imagine... Uh oh.
There... on the other side of the street... this NYU jock. Six and half feet tall. Shoulders out to here. Crewcut. Xanthrocroid. A square hairless face. Some football team barely visible on his hooded sweatshirt. I can see an O and a piece of another letter. TROJANS? WARRIORS? GORLOCKS? I can't tell.
His simian right arm drapes over a girl's shoulder. She's half his height. Long “blond” hair... tits as frontal as his shoulders are side. She looks up into the guy's eyes as if he's the only human in the world. In profile, I see Mr. Muscle look down at her. The shadow from his baseball hat hides his eyes, but I can imagine their practiced blueness, penetrating the otherwise empty brain of his big-boobed girlfriend. He bends down. Kisses her lightly on the forehead. Yuck. That's sick.
The meat: This is the health issue of MRR. I expect most columnists will focus on the sorry state of healthcare in America-- or on their own particular health problems. We've got some ill amongst us. Maybe George Tabb will talk about his own problems. That is, if he can stop talking about me. (I love it, of course!)
There are three main concepts of disease:
ONE: The Western version says disease is like war. An army (of cancer cells, bacteria, viruses) invades. The job of the doctor is to kill or repel the invading army. Drugs and surgery are the weapons. If you have the flu, for example, it's caused by a flu virus. If you kill the virus, you get rid of the flu. The more you kill, the healthier you are.
TWO: The Eastern version of disease says disease is like juggling. As long as everything balances, it works. But if the balance is off, you drop your balls. If you have the flu, for example, it is because an imbalance in your body allows the flu virus to have a bad effect. There are always viruses and bacteria in the air... on the land... in water. Some people get sick, others don't. The reason? You get sick because your body is out of balance. In that weakened state, the flu bug can take over. The job of the doctor is to restore the body's balance. They use herbs, pressure, needles and food, to restore that balance.
THREE: In America, “healthy” and “sick” have replaced “sin” and “virtue” as a way to judge others. Drinking too much... eating too much... homosexuality... gambling... “too much” everyday sex... even “over-shopping.” These are sick, in America in 2009. They are no longer “sins.” No longer “bad.”
In Spanish, you tiene (have)sickness. In English, we ARE sick. Disease of new, like sin of old, defines the individual: I am an alcoholic. You are not what you eat. You are your sickness.
In the past, I've ranted against this definition. I've stood outside America's linguistic gates, banging my hair-plugged head against the lock... demanding change inside.... a new way of speaking... a way that allows people just to be, rather than to be sick. For some unimaginable reason, the linguistic gates, like that little colored guy's much-wiped sphincter, never open for me. So I'll try another stratagem.
I'll accept your definition. You got it. No sin or virtue. No good or bad. Just sick or healthy. But my kind of sickness is Eastern sickness. An imbalance. A tilt, like the leaning tower of Pisa. It's not an invading army. It doesn't need surgery to cut something out. It doesn't need poisons to kill the invaders. It needs a gentle tug the other way. A pull back to equilibrium. Let's take a look at what's sick-- and what isn't.
RULE ONE: Nothing that occurs in your mind is sick. Your mind is where you can do ANYTHING. You SHOULD do anything. It is the center of freedom, a test zone for all ideas. The wildest things are possible here, with NO REPERCUSSIONS. Put a bullet through some evangelist's head in real life... you're outta here! But do it in your mind... and you're free. NOBODY KNOWS!
RULE TWO: This kind of freedom is available to anyone. Every prisoner in every cell in the world has this freedom. It is healthy. Mental freedom is healthy.
Included in this rule is knowledge that some things should remain in your mind. You learn to see them in your mind, smell them in your mind, do them in your mind and then let them go. A fantasy about ripping through your highschool class with an AK47 is healthy. Actually doing it, is not.
RULE THREE: Outside your own mind you can lose your balance... begin to tilt on the slippery slope of disease. And it is DIS-EASE. Your body feels uncomfortable. You aren't satisfied with life in your mind. You're worried about life in other people's mind. You're worried about what THEY think, or worse, what THEY think of YOU. You have something to prove.
“I'm getting laid and you're not,” is what you have to prove to the guy next to you. So you drape your arm around your big-boobed catch, and mark your territory with a kiss to the forehead.
You need to show you possess this girl. You need to keep her in your hand. She might run. You might be alone. Your fears push you off balance. You become sick.
What else is sick?
RULE FOUR: Acting immorally in the world... that's sick. I'm not talking about Christian morality. That says anything that makes your body feel good... is bad. Or the new Christian morality that says anything that makes your body feel good... is “unhealthy.” I'm talking about human morality. A morality that says anything that contributes to the pain of others is ba... er... sick. Buying sweatshop shoes that create the pain of poverty... that pushes the world off balance. That's sick. Withholding money from the bum on the corner, when you're going to use it to download some crustpunk song from i-tunes... this guy's starving in front of you. That's sick. Becoming a temp-lez, so your politics will look right to your fellow students before you find Mr. Corporate Right and move to the burbs to drop puppies. That's sick.
SO: Jerking off to fantasies of sucking the eyeballs out of severed baby heads is NOT sick. Dreams of wallowing in entrails pulled through the hairless vaginae of 10 year old daughters of British aristocracy are NOT sick. Holding hands with your girlfriend while waiting to try on a pair of Nikes. That's really sick.
ENDNOTES: [email subscribers (firstname.lastname@example.org) or website viewers (www.mykelboard.com) will get live links and a chance to comment on the column]
--> Celebrities go free dept: No, I'm not talking about the Lillo Brancato Jr. murder trial. I'm talking about another case.
Most of America knows that Rush Limbaugh was caught with a bottle of Viagra prescribed for someone else. It was at U.S. customs on a return trip from the Dominican Republic. I guess me and Rush have similar tastes in colored girls. Unfortunately for Radioland, Rush will not have to face charges for the illegally possessed drugs.
The local DA (or the feds, I'm not sure which) have decided not to pursue the case.
-->Keith Dobson sent me a brochure of "Precious Gifts from the Redwoods." It lists all those great things (like vases and "three tier modern bowls") that you can buy from the deforested redwood trees. Now that's appreciating nature: cut it down and put it on your home shelf. Yowsah!
-->Nutrition Action Newsletter is published by The Center for Science in the Public Interest. The newsletter shows lots of scams Big Food uses to make you think the shit they're selling is “healthy.” The only thing I dislike about the publication is that it calls especially unhealthy food: Food Porn. That gives porn a bad name.
But, I was dismayed to receive a mass emailing from CSPI calling for a government ban on SPARKS! That beer/Red Bull mix is as logical as spaghetti and tomato sauce. I mean, the only DISADVANTAGE to getting drunk is that you can't stay awake to enjoy it. SPARKS solves the problem.
Sleazier than a letter-writing campaign, CSPI is asking for people to send them “bad experiences from mixing Red Bull with alcohol.” How about the GOOD experiences? How about the people who DIDN'T fall asleep at the wheel when they were drunk? How about the folks who COULD keep their eyes open to enjoy the sex that their drunken conquest got them? How about THOSE experiences? (Is there any difference between SPARKS and Irish Coffee?)
Let's show 'em! Send them your GOOD experiences with Red Bull/booze mixes... and your thoughts on this ban. Email Carol Walsh at: email@example.com. Tell her that you think banning SPARKS is SICK!
-->Real DIY dept: So the banks and auto execs get bailouts from the government. Where's my cut? That's what the factory workers at Republic Windows & Doors in Chicago wanted to know. The factory gave them three days notice, then fired everybody and tried to shut down. Hang on! The union guys on the floor said no. They sat down and took the place over.
Even though I'm not a big fan of WORK, it's nice to see people DOING things instead of taking it on the chin. I only wish New Yorkers had the balls to do something when it hits them... like when the transit fares go up. The mayor has 36 billion dollars, and they're raising MY fare to cover a gap of less than 1/36 of that. Yo Mayor, bail ME out! Meanwhile, I'll sit in on the subway platform floor. Gonna join me?
-->Church and State Dept: The government of our nation's capital gives $12 million to Central Union Mission for a homeless shelter. Sounds good, huh? Well, the shelter requires church attendance, or they throw you back on the street. One man was too ill to go to the religious services. They kicked him out-- to sleep on the streets. That's sick.
-->Even in New York and Berkeley Dept: Two bastions of liberal free speech? Yeah right. In New York, City officials ordered Cooper Union College to remove Picasso's portrait of Joseph Stalin from their facade. The banner was part of an exhibition by the artist Lene Berg. Complaints from the local Ukrainian community brought the ban. They thought the banner “seemed to promote Stalin.” We wouldn't want pictures of Stalin, would we? He was against free speech.
In Berkeley, four posters were banned from display at the city-run Addison Street Windows Gallery. The posters were banned because they contained images of guns. Oh yeah, the name of the exhibition was Art of Democracy. Yeah, right.
-->Keep them (and me) coming dept: Yeah, keep sending me those homemade porno vids! I love 'em. I'm still at POB 137, Prince St. Station, New York NY 10012
You can go to Mykel's homepage for lots of other interesting, weird stuff.