Sunday, December 25, 2011

What I Learned this Christmas

Here's what I learned this Christmas:

1. I have no business wrapping presents. A retarded one armed sloth would have knocked it out in an hour. But not me. Thankfully there is tape. Oh I love tape. Tape helped keep badly cut edges stuck together. Tape covered poorly placed tape or jagged pieces of different paper to make one jigsaw present. Origami would be easier to learn than present wrapping. Santa has an army of elves; I have scissors and tape. Lots of tape. Did I mention the tape? So I learned that next year I will recruit the retarded one armed sloth to help...and maybe the zombie Pygmy Gerbil to fill in name tags. Might as well, my writing looks like I dipped his toes in ink and let him walk on "To" and "From" already. My wife will wake up and think the presents are for someone who goes by the pictograph name of bunny wipes with leaves. Oh well, I tried.

2. "It's a Wonderful Life" and "Christmas Story" never get old and always make me smile. There are traditions that should go(mistletoe really? Give perverted uncles an excuse to haunt your doorways) but those movies are as much a part of Christmas as mall Santas and a plastic baby Jesus.

3. It doesn't matter your reason for the season. What matters is the caring, the bonding, and giving nature towards man that ripples through the air. It is about feeling, not receiving or wanting. It is above all about love.

4. I now know why my mom was always exhausted on Christmas morning. Parents, the whole Santa thing is cute until your red eyed with bleeding knuckles trying to put together some toy, bickering at your spouse over tools or where they put the damned batteries, until it's together. Then as you slide into bed the screaming spawn of your love crashes in screaming "it's Santa, it's Santa" and through a half open eyelid(the other is gummed shut from eye crust) you see the bitter bitch that is the dawn burning through your curtains. But all is well once you see the smiling faces...and drink coffee, lots of coffee.

5. Teaching a toddler about death during the happiest time of the year sucks. My son never got to meet my mom before she passed. This is the first year he realizes that I have a mom, who isn't here. Where is she? She died bud. What's died? To sleep forever. Where? Don't know. Why? Because I'm not dead. Will you died? Yeah, we all do. Where you go be when you died? Huh, Oh, don't know, nobody does. We sleep forever. Now put the flowers on grandma Vicki's name plaque. Why? It's a show of respect. Why we come here? To remember her, to honor her, and for some to feel and talk to her. Why mom cry? She misses her bud. She was like a mom to her. Will mom going to die? Yeah, kiddo, she will...but not for a long time. Why mom died? We all do. We all just...go. Daddee, I no want mom to died. Me neither bud, me neither...

That's all. It's been an interesting Christmas. Interesting and enlightening. Merry Christmas everybody.

Merry Christmas movie house...!

Friday, December 16, 2011

The Lion Who Ate God

His voice roared with a deep, gravelly baritone. Words flowed like the whiskey in his glass: smooth on the rocks but always burned going down. His opinions stung with fanged honesty; dulled only by his dry Brit accent. But the written word was his roar; a deep bellow that raged across social class and politics until it reached the hearts of the faithful who feared his words the most. For they knew when the lion roared, an atheist was born.
Dedicated to Christopher Hitchens: writer and critic, voice of free thought, the atheist Malcolm X.

R.I.P (4/13/49-12/15/11)

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Dead Reckoning: Upon a Midnight Clear

(Quick note: I intended to create a separate blog for fiction but for simplicity everything will be to this blog for now)

    It was an indigo clear night with with a fat belly of a full moon hanging low in the sky. Stars shimmered like too much glitter on a kid's art project as the North Star shone above like God's scornful eye. It was cold; made even colder by gloves with torn fingers, scavenged jackets, moth eaten socks, and no fires to burn.
    Couldn't light a fire, they would see it. The dead always did.
    Weeks past, as Autumn's iron month of November gasped into December, some poor bastards lit a rooftop fire. Half of Boston's dead stormed it like the Bastille. So no fires.
    It wasn't all bad. Across rooftops shadows moved, flashlights flickered in Morse code on the hour, and a community was born. Every week there were fewer flashlights; rooftop shadows lumbered instead of walked, and names learned were forgotten.
      Half a dozen shadows moved across the silver lit nightscape. Jokes flashed through Morse. Boots stomped, hands were flexed, and beneath the rooftop village a city of staggering death.
    A quick flash from Janice atop the Reilly Liquor store: midnight. Another series of flashes: happy Pearl Harbor Day.
   The community flashed in respect. Heads were bowed for those grandfathers and friends that died back then. The mind wandered to all the dead below, walking and non walking, the amalgam of a country and a people that was...and never will be.
    Lights stopped. Silver darkness and distant groans became the night. Then over the dead came a harmonic wail. Confused heads cocked. The deep screech of a saxophone wailed like a mourning widow. Then an answering note blared through the cold air as a trumpet joined. Trumpet and sax, brothers in melody, cried out to the night in a mournful dirge. Heads lowered as "Taps" played. The soulful wail warmed hearts, forced tears, and brought forth memories of those below once alive.
    The pair played on. No one saw the dead swarm like agitated ants. The band played on until the song ended. Tears froze. Hands wiped eyes and nose.
     Then the pair played, deep, mournful; they wailed through souls as  "Amazing Grace" haunted the night. Hearts swelled. Stars twinkled through tear blind eyes. Some noticed the dead below. Flashlights flickered in frantic warning. The pair played on.
     The music sailed across the night on the wings of angels, spreading throughout the silent Necropolis.  Distant shadows, deep in the city, moved on far away roofs. Clicks echoed as upper story windows were thrown open.
    A crash boomed as the door to the player's building smashed in. A distant gunshot rang out from a neighboring roof. Then another from a different building. The rooftop sentries tried, but the swarm flooded into the building. Moments in dread froze as all waited. But the band played on.
    Then the saxophone silenced mid note.
    There was no scream, no shout.
    Then the trumpet went mute. Dead shadows surged across the roof where once two had dared to live. Some watched. Others turned away. None who heard would ever forget.

     It was an indigo clear night with a fat belly of a full moon...

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Welcome to Fright Night!

Welcome to my blog! This is my professional and personal outlet for creativity. This blog, Grave Thoughts, is for thoughts and opinions as well as updates to professional life. Other blogs will feature stories or poetry as well as a novella or two. I will keep this introduction short and to the point. Welcome to my mind; welcome to Fright Night.