Friday, April 01, 2022

Change of Heart or You're STILL Wrong, Mykel's April 2022 Blog

 


 

Change of Heart
or You're STILL Wrong,
Mykel's April 2022 Blog

by Mykel Board

People will do anything, no matter how absurd, in order to avoid facing their own souls. One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, but by making the darkness conscious. — Carl Jung,


The refusal to discipline our impulses is ultimately at the heart of everything from the negative way we conduct our political campaigns to the selfish and dangerous way we drive our cars.

--Stephen L. Carter


April is when the brown turns green… when nature calls from the night shouting: WAKE UP! Fools ignore the call. I’m not one of them.

It’s some kind of ladder… up against a wall. Wrists and ankles taped to it… duct tape… shiny silver under the floodlight. Another piece across the mouth seals the lips. Muffled screams catch themselves behind the tape. A long drip of saliva leaks from under the seal.

Here comes the candle… my favorite part. A red one… the drippings show against the bright white skin. Start on the chest… over the right breast… drip… drip… drip… The whole body shakes... another muted scream beneath the tape…

I unzip my pants. Another drop… hit the nipple right on it.. Yes! Yes! Now go lower… the lower parts… shaved and ready for drip… drip…

Oh my God! Keep going. Another one in the same place… I’m almost there. Drip… drip.. Yes! Yes! Uh.. Uh… aaaaaaaah! A few dribbles into the handkerchief.

Whew! I needed that.

I leave the website, clear my cache. I don’t need a fistful of advertisers trying to sell me duct tape. Then I get dressed.

Okay. I’m ready to start my day. Supermarket for a week’s TV dinners. Post office to mail off those eBay sales. Shit, I feel bad parting with GG’s Eat My Fuc (original Blood Records pressing) but five hundred bucks will buy me Rittenhouse Rye for a month. Then to the Union Square Farmers Market for produce, bread, and cheese.

Dressed and out the front door. Pfffffft. A bicycle barreling down the sidewalk barely misses me. I hate bicyclists. Self-righteous sons of bitches. Oh, I’m so environmentally correct. I can go the wrong way down a one-way street, ride on the sidewalk, not have a light at night. I don’t need to follow your laws. I’m saving fossil fuel, so get the fuck out of the way.

Get on the fuckin’ street!” I yell at the cyclist.

Still peddling, he turns around, flips me the bird, turns back, and crashes into a trash can. The front wheel slips in the slats of the can. The driver tips… falling hard on the concrete. Luckily, he doesn’t hit his head, or my joy might be tempered. I can see his arm is scraped up and the bike wheel bent like a folded pizza. I can’t hold back a laugh as I pass him, wishing I had the balls to piss on him.

I walk on: post office, supermarket, heading toward Union Square.

Yo Mykel, how’s it goin?”

It’s Kevin, my hugely fat street-living pal. As usual, I find him begging just outside the square. As soon as I see him, I reach in the watch pocket of my Levis, and take a dollar from the small pile of bum-aimed singles I keep there. I hand it to Kevin.

Didja see the bike crash?” I ask him.

Nope,” he answers, “what happened?”

“Some asshole riding a bike on the sidewalk flips me off… then crashes… It was sooo great!”

Kevin shakes his head.

Mykel, Mykel, Mykel,” he says. “I like you and you are always so kind to me, but you shouldn’t be laughing at someone else’s pain.”

Waddaya mean?” I ask.

That guy on the bike… he was probably a delivery guy… service promised in 20 minutes or it’s free. Guess who pays. His life is harder than yours, Mykel. Try to chill.”

I can feel myself starting to get pissed off.

Chill? You want me to chill? I have to walk through this city where half the people on the street are afraid to show their faces? I can’t sleep because midnight trucks backing up BEEP BEEP BEEP warning who? The toddlers on the road at 3AM? Meanwhile half of NYU is worshiping Saint Patrick by vomiting in front of my door. And I should chill?”

Calm down Mykel,” says Kevin. “I live on the street… and I don’t complain.”

You should complain,” I tell him. “Sure your life is shittier than mine. Why not scream that to the world? Let them know how you’ve been fucked over! Spit in the face of every pedestrian who walks right past you… pretends he doesn’t see you… ignores your pain… your needs.”

And where would that get me?” He asks. “I already have a bum leg and I should be on insulin… but I can’t afford it. Do I need to add a stroke of stress on top of that? Do I need to carry around a lungful of hate and anger? Mykel, I live on the street and my life is better than yours.”

I donno, Kevin,” I say, “Maybe you got something I lack.”

I take my leave and walk through Union Square

A bearded guy, wearing black, blocks my path.

Are you Jewish?” he asks.

No -ish about it,” I tell him. “I’m a Jew.”

He laughs. “Did you set Tefillin today?”

Instead of brushing him off like an errant cyclist, for some reason I’m tolerant. Listening. Maybe the talk with Kevin had something to do with it. The Chassid invites me into the mitzvah tank, wraps the tefillin around my arm and my head, puts a tallit around my shoulder. [NOTE: The picture is not me. It’s just an internet image I found that will explain tefillin to the goyim.]

Now repeat after me,” he says. Then, line for line, he recites a Hebrew prayer. I repeat it.

As I hear myself speak, I feel my body empty. The tension and the anger slowly leave me. The release is ecstasy. Better than a massive shit. When I return home that night I find I have no interest in the pouring wax videos. I want to see people screwing, yes! But I want them to be in love with each other.

But wait! There’s more:

The next week… on Sunday… I sit on a bench in the park. I guess I’m still feeling the after-effects of the tefillin. An attractive young man in a suit and tie sits next to me. He glances my way. A week ago, I would have thought, Jesus Fuckin’ Christ! A fuckin’ Mormon! Blow me if you want, but don’t tell me how Jesus loves me. Now, I calmly wait to see what happens.

Nice day, isn’t it?” he says.

I nod.

The sky is blue,” he continues, “and we’re here, enjoying the sunlight, watching people have a good time… at the same time feeling we’re part of something bigger. Part of the universe.”

Okay, enough is enough. Tefillin or not, there’s just so much crap I can put up with. I don’t yell at the guy, but I do look him up and down and frown.

He laughs. “Oh these clothes… You must think I’m going to pull out a bible and beat you with it.”

I laugh. “You’re pretty close to right,” I tell him.

“I’m just dressed this way because I’m coming from my brother’s funeral. Half the time you’ll see me I’m wearing orange robes and sandals.”

You’re shittin’ me,” I tell him. “How can you appreciate the sky and the universe and the people in the park if your brother just kicked the bucket?”

It’s all part of the same thing,” he says. “The universe goes through us... live… die… if you believe, live again… if you don’t believe… it’s just turning out the day to enter the night.”

We talk for a couple hours.

FLASH TO NOW: I’ve changed. Maybe you’ve seen me in the park… You probably haven’t noticed. All those saffron robed bald guys. You wouldn’t see the tallit… you’d just turn your head or maybe look skyward… think “yeah, There’s another one.”

But that one is me. The rumors you’ve heard are true. That’s me of the shaved head… of the saffron robes. That’s me Jewish Buddhist… and Hebrew Monk. I call myself a Jewdhist Hunk.

I’m calm. Pissed off at no one. I still chat with my homeless friends… still give ‘em a dollar. But I don’t complain. I’m alive… calm… feeling the sun on my head and the music of the cosmos in my ear.

I start every day sitting on the floor cross-legged… breathing in through my nose and out through my mouth. Clearing my thoughts when some kind of joy-in-pain enters my head, I look at it like a chipmunk running across my path. I let it go and it scampers away. My joy is in the relief of inner pain.

The candle wax videos are gone. I pleasure myself to loversinlove.com. When I see cyclists on the sidewalk, I move to one side and let them pass. “Have a nice day!” I shout after them.

See you in hell... No! See you in the heaven we make for ourselves,

Mykel Board


ENDNOTES: [You can contact me on facebook or by email at mykelboard@gmail.com. Through the post office: send those... er... private DVDs..or music or zines... or anything else (legal only!) to: Mykel Board, POB 137, New York, NY 10012-0003. If you like my writing, you can be notified when anything new is available. Send me an email with SUBSCRIBE in the subject line. Back blogs and columns are at https://mykelsblog.blogspot.com]



April Showers Dept: By the time you read this, I will have taken my shower for April. I’ll be smelling like Irish Spring… with a touch of herbal essence. You might see me in Washington Square Park... sitting next to that jazz band by the fountain… chanting my mantras while the sax wails tales of love for the universe. Make sure you say hello. I won’t ask you for money.


Hope she wasn’t in pain dept: WKBN reports: On March 12, a standoff in Pennsylvania dragged on for 10 hours after a woman made an odd appearance at a neighbor's home. The woman was naked, and forcefully entered the home, where she stole the owner's shotgun. As she walked out his back door with the gun, he asked her what she was doing. She said, "It's my house." The woman then returned to her own home. The neighbor called the cops, who set up a perimeter around the woman's house but couldn't extract her until late that evening. She was taken to a local hospital with self-inflicted injuries... from a sword

How Much Punk Rock Do You Hear In Russia? dept: Since I got through this entire blog without mention of the Russia-Ukraine war, I should at least offer a YouTube video with my feelings about the whole thing. It’s right here.

See you in hell, redux… No, not this time.


MB

LINK TRADE DEPARTMENT:

I read that the search engines like lots of links... and it's also nice to support my friends and enemies in their blogs. So facebook me or email me if you have a blog, webpage or something else to connect to. I add you. You add me.

Here's a start:


Here’s Richard Goldberg: goldberg.wordpress.com

Poetry and humor fans will like Justin Martin in The Latency

And my friend Mike R has a nice site with recipe hits from the past! (He cooked for me once... great stuff.) Check out Yesterday's Recipes.

And here's one by a member of ANTI-SEEN... a tour diary of sorts.

Andy Shelton has an interesting blog here.

Savage Hippie is a guy who has been YouTubing for a long time. Our opinions largely overlap... but he complains that I'm a Communist. I'm not! I'm a communist.

Chris Stecher publishes a zine called PRECIS. You can see the back issue links there... and he promises a new issue soon.

George Fertakis has a very nice graphics-heavy blog... with music and books featured prominently. If there’s no link here (I can’t find it temporarily), then Google… er… Duckduckgo him for information.

And my long-term pal Sid Yiddish contributes with his Mishegas Master Blog.

And connect to TRUST Zine, a long-running German punk zine… that STILL PRINTS!!! Yeah, they have a website too… of course! It’s here.

Here are a couple video links.

This from Jon Cox https://squelchchamber1.bandcamp.com/album/down-so-low

And this one from my very long-time friend Roger Armstrong.

Jim Testa moved his long running zine, Jersey Beat, to the blogosphere awhile back. You can read it here. Jim also recommended a kind of unique album… in a style you don’t see to much of these days… or any days. Neo-Hassidic Rock Opera. You can stream the album here.

Kyle Nonneman is in prison in Portland. At least he can’t be kidnapped by the secret police… I think. I post his blog for him, he can’t do it from the klink. Lots of stuff about noise metal… and some very weird politics that will either fascinate or repulse you… or both.

My long time pal, Jim Hayes rightfully complained about my leaving out his blog. He’s a great writer, so it was a tragic omission. Here it is.

Oh yeah, then there’s me. I have a blog of stuff I’ve written mostly from last century. You might enjoy it. Then again, you might not. It’s here.


Let me know if you have a blog… or a print zine… or a YouTube and want to be added to the list. You show me yours… you’ve already seen mine. god@mykelboard.com


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