It's New Year's Day and after two weeks of me and Dave Johnston killing it in general and attacking news video like a school of TV News Piranha, I'm decompressing and don't wanna hear jack about anyone's news, politics, trending topics, Year End Favorites or anything else.
I was pleased, in my way out the door, to hear about Air Asia and the discovery of wreckage, bodies, etc. Don't get me wrong----I feel very badly for all those families who lost loved ones----but at least I won't have to hear any weird theories about where the plane is being hidden and who might be behind it.....(yawn)
So, anybody wanna buy a painting? I've got tons of 'em. This stuff is taking up tons of room in my tiny-ass apartment and you should take it off my hands.
Hoping you guys are going to have a good 2015. I hope nobody has died. Kick ass, do something that's meaningful to you and keepliving strong.
So I've been working, off and on, on this thing that might be a book-or-at-least-novella-length piece of whatever, tentatively titled DOO-DAH DAYS IN MAMMON. Here's another excerpt. Enjoy.
THE PRETTIEST GAS STATION IN TOWN
Downtown everyone is precious and witty. They throw words like “paradigm” and “dialogue” and “sustainability” around, and everyone refers to everything that happens to them as their “journey”. The pretty embankments cause cars to collide on all corners and in the grip of the car crash derby everyone adores the saplings that have been planted in the middle of the road. Members of City Council take turns scolding smokers and policing their litter. The Mayor even took it upon himself to carp at some slovenly ham-and-egger who left his engine running while parked. All in all a picayune utopia.
There’s little debating that we love our city and that we know we’re something special. Everything’s pretty---even the gas stations are pretty. Not like the old ones---just---you know….pretty. Places where people can gather and shop.
There’s even an ordinance for that now. We hammered that through. We have an ordinance for everything.
The last gas station was a thing of beauty----they knocked down slums for a block and a half and it was gorgeous---you drove past it and the lights were so nice you had to think there was a 24-hour fiesta happening there.
Nobody needed those dirty slums, anyway----that’s what the lower levels, the outer rims, Dogtown, Sherberville, The Holler, Betty Jo, the whole damned Southern Quadrant are for. The property values have already gone up and they’ll be able to put in a whole new row of condos later this year.
The parking lot of the new gas station is always hopping and there’s plenty of room to park, so the investors are already seeing returns. And jobs---yes, jobs---roughly a dozen—all part time, so they don’t have to pay benefits or anything sticky like that—further returns on investment and it keeps the kids off the street, doesn’t it? It’s a win-win.
Did I mention that it’s clean? Not like the old ones. Looks like a museum. The employees are all dressed like museum guards, too---collared shirts, blazers, the whole nine yards----there won’t be any “broken windows” here! No dirt, no scum, no shirt, no shoes, no service…you can buy groceries there, too---not just soda pop and microwave burritos---homemade tabouli. Almond Flour----the good stuff, with Bolivian Orphan Tears. Tahini. Yes, I said Tahini. Pickled Asparagus. Dried red chili peppers. No broken windows here…
There’s no litter or dirt in the parking lot, either. Ever. We have an ordinance for that, you know. Hell. I sat on the committee that wrote it.