Beside the Dirty River:
Reaganized and Im-Palinized Along
the Fox River in St. Charles, Illinois

Symmetry comes to your mind, but it’s hardly late enough in the hour to consider it fully, completely. More like, it’s this: Listening to a long sad aphorism by Mark Twain, once of Hannibal, Missouri, thus misquoted, misre-engineered: The hardest thing in life, the thing that really wears you out, the rub, as they say (some call it entropy), is having to spend most of your life trying to convince completely ignorant, stupid, ill-mannered, superstitious or otherwise plain retarded people that there’s such a thing as being smart.

Not to get too prideful on the subject. To think too much of your own education is no humble way to go on living. In fact, information can really get in the way. Too much information, poison. If you have too many beeping crickets in your head, if you haven’t gone completely Luddite (and therefore mad), then you are simply pushing the envelope on what the mind can actually contain. There are just too many things that if you did know, you’d wish you didn’t. If you are like one of those poor folks who are suckerfish for data, well, condolences, bothered brothers, sorry sisters. And if you wield it all like a sword, using the word (lowercase, though solemnly used) like a shield instead of a sword, well, we regretfully inform you that your apologies are not accepted.

On that opposite side of that coin, sometimes, yes, you just need the effing noise. Say you are camped along the mad boulevard of St. Charles, outside of Chicago … and it’s a Saturday morning and the motors are roaring in front of you, camped at the Starbucks, sucking down your caffeine, getting your first cig with coffee for the day. A glorious morning, with motors a roarin’. Down America’s snaky trail they go: The rented cars, the newly bought golden bows, all funded by the cash for cars program, making the whole roadway look like a new car lot running like blood from the old century into the new; the cattle trucks, the dump trucks, the pickups carrying horses to their polo games, the motorcycles, the morons and their motors, there they all go … in camper cans and brightly colored vehicles designed in the late 20th century and made to all look like aerodynamic Clorox bottles, the Porches for the Plutocrats, the Lincoln Continentals for the Republicans, the Democrats, seeking prestige, in their Priusi (hybrids of dinos, still, sucking the vampire blood from the earth, but only half as often), the independents in their silvery gleaming galaxies of wheels, the Redcoats in their redcoats, the Blues in their bluesmobiles, sex and death and terror and awestruck to the bottom of the gully in front of the Starbucks, down the red brick canyon, carting coal or gasoline or ethanol, corn oil and hydrogen and eternal air in the morning’s last pure light. Lawyers dressed as gangsta bikers. Gangsta bikers dressed as lawyers. All of the dogs and cats and homos and lesbians in their convertibles, their hair glaze getting Beatled down by the sun and blazing classic rock radio, their stereos boom boxing their personal music, their power, their Powaqua, piped in by satellites now right into their husks, into their chests, and the latter, their long blonde hair flying wild in the evil, weaponized breeze … a wind, tainted by the Fox River, on this day overflowing and reeking of kerosene … Holy Ronald Reagan! … if you are downwind today it will make you dizzy …

And there you are in front of Starbucks, with your notebooks and designer coffee, your pack of smokes, American Spirits, expensive as a vote in these Chicago gangland parts, with the strange wise guy in a T-shirt staring down at you from his second-floor window right across the street, above the pizza parlor. There you are, with your pride, your conceit. O, you have so much information flowing in your head, faster, faster, faster … esters and ketones and raging hormones, from sex denied from living in the burbs for just one week, for living among the so-called (as Tom Wolfe put it), the “Masters of the Universe.” Little do you know that, even as you think all of these wonderful beautiful mind thoughts, he is plotting against you: the Dr. Cyclops, master of all the fatherlands you can currently survey.

And he won’t pick up the phone today. He, who lured you into this state of placated freedom after a full week of endless horrors. He who knows much more than he lets on, some effing one-eyed grandmaster, He! So you thought you had one grand Peter Pan fantasy in yer head … lazy post-literate you, without a so-called “pot to piss in,” as you have heard frequently during the week. Every time you heard it you looked into your Navajo-made sacred earn for your cig smoke ash. You with you shaman pretenses, your rael as blood pink sunglass lenses … He, with his plan, working against, and yet, despite his best efforts failing … because she is basic, gorgeous, a queen, true to her times as a bee in some mysterious hive, commanding the spirits of the earth, the underworlds and over worlds, her sex divine, her Joan of Arc in full arc, her animal magnetism, fully magnetized, all sharpened by the wickedly severe engine of grief.

O yeah, it’s real. The day you two arrived in this plastic castle fantasyland Dr. Cyclops was hatching his plot against this fairyland queen and long away from home Ulysses, both barely unable to even gauge which way was north or south or east or west, save for the unfamiliar sunlight and the direction of the foul winds, blown up this north by the British Petroleum-launched war to re-take America, an undeclared war that now, not even the U.S. military quite gets yet … from the moment the divide and conquer game was on as you are carefully guided into his road raging castle on the hills of the Shire. The whole neighborhood is a military base in the meadows of the Plutocracy, homes for colonels retired but still having their use, for KGB queens, but hell, they aren’t near half as dangerous to this sacred soil as the real estate mavens in their pink Cadillacs and their busy blood for time-is-money ways and means, all meeting the endless ends, the service to the great digitized seas of that false god: The caches of electronified cash, the stolen formulas for beers, the Kentucky fried generals on their furloughs, watching it all go down in deep bunkers beneath their homes … O yeah, trust this, if nothing else: It is so effing so! In God you can trust. In Ta’Iowa you can trust the things you wished you didn’t know.


And Now

For a Few Words

on Buying

a Plastic Compass

at Wal Mart

You hear them gun up. They are like tanks gassing for battle. Just as the sun rises. You are at the Wal Mart distribution center in Mount Pleasant, Iowa, and the not-so-tiny army is just getting ready for the pusch.

You want to salute, but a tall, highly distinguished looking, slightly limping, downright admiralesque truck driver is watching you, watching him, and that already, as the sun continues to climb, makes the perfectly "normal," well, perfectly "paranormal." The distribution center features a huge complex, maybe four or five football fields long, with vast numbers of trucks in the back, enclosed by a barbed wire fence. Activity is continuous after the sun rises. It is systematic. Ghosty, with few souls to be actually seen. Downright robotic.

But you are simple folk. Practically human. Actually somewhat happy. Your plan for the day is to buy a compass at the Wal Mart nearby, and if it wasn't for the blazing orb in the bright orange in the circus animal clouds, you'd never be able to tell that the Mt. Pleasant Super Center is directly east. However, you do know this: If the great cities of the earth are 24-hour-a-day hotspots, your friendly neighborhood Wal Mart burns just as brightly in the spangles still gleaming, the stars brightly steaming, and so on .... With retirees at the door. Half the county is employed there, at the Super Center, actually. The other half? Most likely running in and out of the Super Center in a kind of wild-eyed state of panic.

The panic is for going in, quite truthfully. The release can be determined, the very sense of a short-term satisfaction, maybe only as good as the car ride home, in the trail of candy wrappers, soda cans, plastic pieces of all kinds of things, that stream, chaotically, along a nearby access road bordered on both sides by fields of corn grown for ethynol.

The front of the Super Center big box store is more palatable to the eye. The front is decorated with the words "Always" in a kind of cursive, red, giant type, and "low prices," half as large, directly below: reading, thus "Always low prices." But above is not always as so below, so when it comes to the medium being the message in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa, you really only know one true thing: Something is quite FUBAR here. Because, for one thing, if you check the prices in the surrounding small towns, prices are far lower, just to compete and ... maybe, just maybe, even survive.

Meanwhile, over the technologically zombiefied distribution center, the angry sun continues to rise in the east and the trucks continue to gun up and line out for invasion and the people, one out of seven in America now living in poverty, continue to get, well, hungrier, angrier, more anxious, more in panic. Toward the north (one supposes, since we are still sans a compass), the trucks slowly move out in a parade of equally metered marches to thy mind in a military mode.

The Wal Mart trucks, loaded up with every conceivable kind of petroleum- or corporation corn-seed-based product, are streaming out in a viral march into every demographically correct corner of middle America. Humming onward sweetly. Moving not-so-discretely. In perfect echelons of control. One might consider how each truck driver might be as equally automated as the consumers they are targeting now.

However, as those consumers line in and out, one is more easily led to understand quite the opposite. People who work at Wal Mart are completely varied human beings, with their own tastes, flavors, beliefs and so on ... So before you go on categorizing the consumers of middle earth as being a race of Lilliputians gone completely insane, let's set ourselves in proper motion. Let's ground ourselves. Let's first seek to maintain a proper moral compass. Let's just do that first. As the sun rises. Before it sets.

One handy way to do just that is to take a closer look at what is happening within the concentric circles of what is happening, even as you read this, in other small towns in southeastern Iowa. In places like Morning Sun, for example. Maybe 30 miles away as the crow flies. In Morning Sun, you will find, the situation downtown is dismal. The whole place could be bought up now with Monopoly money. The only storefronts or commercial retail spaces left standing look burned out, bombed out, forgotten, dead, de-neighborized, closed for the rest of steaming eternity under the angry sun.

O sure, there might be, in any one of these surrounding towns, the occasional shop keeper left standing, who will greet you like Daffy Duck, waving his finger. He wags. He complains. He dreams of moving getting out his business, entirely. If not for the few good folks who come in to shop locally, he'd be in Bermuda by now. Since the finger wagging is a universal sign indicating the common small-town accusal, meaning, "Shame on you," each of these towns on most days would be classified better as ghost towns.

"Shame for all who shop at Wal Mart," they might say. "Shame on all of you who drive out of their communities, burning all of that gas, burning all of that time and money, to go out of their way to destroy the very towns they live in. Shame on all of you, far worse criminals than the little thieves who sit in their tiny small town cop jail cells, who go all of that way to buy all of that foreign-made crap, when they can buy some of my crap, much of it frequently locally produced, that they could buy instead."

But holy Ronald Reagan, sweet finger-flipping Jesus, as everyone must not know, as all wild-eyed Wal Mart shoppers do not feel or deny or fail to understand, they know not what they do. They know not that they are citizen soldiers as well for the zombied technological armies of the corporately sponsored seige against the American dream. They can't even see how they are bleeding their own communities dry. They do not know that, without their moral compass; hell they can scarecely listen or even be told, how the Wal Mart army is a big bluesy vampire sucking their very vitals, their lifestyles, their values, completely dry.

So go ahead, buy your plastic, Chinese-made compass at Wal Mart. Notice how it breaks easily. It will happen ... someday soon. You can always buy another one, and another, and another ... and if you have enough money, in great bulky bulks at Sam's Club, too ... all soon to be built on the surface of the moon.


Fer Bermuda, Aye!

For those about
to wake up
for their next
tropical depression:
I blow a kiss
and an antidote
loaded with Vitamin D

For my brothers
and sisters,
weak, picked on,
flipped on their backs
like doomed sea turtles
for the past twenty years:
I push a little blue button
issuing a satellite beep
causing instant pain relief

For a phony Noah's Ark
full of pixilated African animals
diving deep into twin lakes,
moving slow or fast,
enjoined at their hips:
I call up a might cloud,
concealing a thunderbird

For illegal immigrants
(as well as half-human aliens)
hiding like Apaches
in the motel rooms
of America: I send
a silent warning,
a three-hour head start,
initiating a two-year
launch sequence before
the power all goes off

For dangerous rip currents
building something together
in cascades of waves,
the top one silent, deadly:
a unified nomenclature,
be you rogue waves,
sneeker waves,
baddass high tides,
a roiling, boiling
but quite sexed up
good egg project
shaping smoother shores
so we can all learn
just a little bit more
under mostly cloudy skies

For all of the supposedly poisonous
under toads, intelligent horny toadies,
a tinted glass manufactured
by mere mortal men,
to hide behind
and therefore
to evolve anew
and grow

For all of the rest
of you angel hatchlings
in your fleshy husks:
for each, a single ticket
to ride, to sink and then fly,
riding high up in wood coffins,
rising up to the sea's surface,
like the meek in the Hopi bible
swimming with the shore

Douglas McDaniel,
Coralville, Iowa



The Reformed
Presbyterian Church
was hit by a thunderbolt
and Morning Sun, Iowa
was rendered back to the year
Nineteen Fifty One

And brother Jesus
sat on his Cardinal corner
with the ghosts of three gauzy
British colonial columns
behind him, more than twice
the height of the man
commanding them,
who lives four or five
times more often in life
than in death,
but who's counting?

Meanwhile, the local fire captain,
Tom "Torch" Lawyer
sits as the Grand Poopba
in the unmarked Oddfellows Hall ...
He, a Big Brother, of the weather map
and he sings, "O Hey, Gaia, what did I do?"

"O yeah, there was that, and that and that ...
I'm so sorry angry sun, sorry for this,
sorry for that ... O Kracken King Igor,
heavy weather hanging from across the plains
to the mountains once made pleasant
from Denver, Colorado
to Bloomington, Indiana:
Where John Cougar Mellencamp
is still wearing his hard hat ...

"Please, O Kracken,
spare me your change
and please spare
me some of my favorite
old mason bricks,
and spare me
from my brats

"Leave me one
Rosetta stone
and at least three
favored stocks
for six hundred
and sixty six
Fortune 500 companies
and please sponsor
my one last storm rider
so he can broadcast,
like Paul Revere in silver
my long last broadcast
on the Weather Channel
on Ruppert Murdoch's
Blue Ray Disc-shaped
magic Thunderbird carpet,
so that music can still be
piped in like rock'n'roll
in a cowboy hat
at the local Wal Mart

"And spare me your golden
spike in natural gas,
your January jolt
in coffee prices,
and spare me your sanguine
advice on what to expect
and spare me your photo radar
lanes used by Fed Ex,
and spare me your
weaponized Pineapple Express
as it tingles a trio
of water spouts
across the forty eighth paralell

"But please remind me later
to use a higher quality
white ashy paint
so I can smile upward
with a stun gun kept
quite safe behind my back
as I move beneath overhanging
chemtrail inspired clouds
to keep my doormats dry
when you try to reclaim
your honestly inward saints

"And tell that bastard
Mr. Ringo, he's running
out of time, and though
he bought a Wal Mart sold
Chinese-made plastic compass
that we have him lined up
in our electronic eye sights
and he'll never get across
King Henry the Eight's
magical river line

"Because, you see,
Medicare doesn't cover
especially his supposedly
secure bright and sunny
horizons, or bullets
or my elitist religious conceits
because he can't use his cell phone
or even mark a fully mastered retreat
with the sunspots buzzing up auroras
against his great hope for liberties
because they will always cost him more
than his lonely Roosevelt socialist dime

"Say a big hello
to that second toughest
man in America,
that next-to-last Templar
because I can see, feel and read
the second coming of Joan of Arc
sleeping in her shrine ...
'Coswe all know there's nothing
more exhausting than inaction
and his sacred pen as shotgun
won't bring his dead doggies back

"So hey! Angry Solari,
let's just say it was all
a good old boy's
and even if the annointed We
run the risk of getting heart arrested,
or if sanctified gloomy We
speed through our Freemason made
towns, rocket launched
at the speed
of thirteen million
miles per hour,
and even if Johnny Ringo
can teach himself
to silence the two stormy
coasts in the centered
silences of his mind,
we can cut off his touch
to Taiowa her in Iowa
in order to remain in Tombstone
to review the cannons loaded,
in the late afternoon aspenglow,
as they are pointed
at Cochise's last stronghold
so that we, alone, can enjoy
the bonny bones of Norteneo
from our weaponized
plastic transister radio,
nor can he enjoy sweet
Maggie Marlowe, sleeping
in nicotine terrified migraines
without a tweet in our jail-baited
basements humming up thunder
from our cold dark basements
down below, so we can
keep up our plans to sell off
glassified dead scorpions
to the last of the plutocratic
touristas at the high noon
military movie show."

~ Douglas McDaniel,
Morning Sun, Iowa


Lost Hero Blues
Laying down his bones
in the dispossed back alley,
the bone man shivers in the streetlight
Ambushing archers, waiting in the wood,
keep a keen eye far into the distance for the enemies of love
She picks up his bones breathes flesh from her stone,
but then walks away, stinging his flesh with a slap to awake him
Leaving his bones, again ...
Le Heusero died again, and he lingers here, beneath this tree,
as the corridor waits to hear the song of the beautiful man
whose legend is told from hill to hill,
mountain to mountain & sea to misty sea.
Information Disease
After seeing the morning light
through three motel room windows
the dog came out, delivered by a member
of the Select Committee to Keep Me
From Doing Anything But Writing Poetry
and in that morning blight, the red and yellow light
yellow as the angry sun, degenerated all of mankind
into a dumbed down cromagmun gun, that, lacking
any more access to information, imagined itself into a slick
And just as fast, although less permanent,
in the corner of my eye, the profound Eris of the deep
caught up with conversation with an heiress of the Grand Old Party
and the earth's unpleasant grip on the dominion of sin quaked, rattled, rolled
and water vapor seeped up, toward the earth's surface, from underground and flowers
bloomed louder and we all got younger and the wind softened and daylight sent love sighs
into the breeze
Douglas McDaniel,
Morning Sun, Iowa


The Solar Bath

She awoke
shapely but shaken
And I watched her bathe
In blinding electricity
Beneath the solarized sky
Tiamat met Zeus
Were unable to reach
The porch to punish her
And over the cornfields
Of Republicanated Iowa
Thunder a’ trumpeted,
And Tesla’s lightning
Failed to defeat her,
And solar light bounced
Off the feet of her
Bouncing upwards
Off the earth, to fire
Up the weaponized,
Quite culinary clouds
On the ninth
Of September Eleventh
She awoke shapely but shaken
As the neighborhood watchers
Faded away like gargoyles,
Draconian unbeings,
As the Ta’ Iowan
dawn made
The winds sing
A new day, and all
The old fucked up
Old ghosts all
But ran away
I watched her bathe
In electricity last night
As we watched the watchers
And then all of the watchers
Started signing in Morse Code
And before dawn we chased
Each other around
Wondering which one
Was pretending to be
The scariest and smartest
of them witches on
the mirror ball wall
And internationalist
Viagran huntsmen fumbling
For newsy spells to foul
The electrician’s switches
As the shapely but shaken
Wake up call doomed up
A first breath of hurricane fires
Churning up in the earns of the earth
And I imagined how the tectonics
Of how the globe might burst
Sending more seawater, yes,
Up from down below,
Way way way down below
More even than
the moon can send
if Zeus ever came back
to toss that old rock
down again
And before dawn she bathed
In a lake of fire
Sent down from the sky
And we all chased down
The shapely but shaken
Without causing a ruckus
Or a Venusian star
to start screaming
About her long lost
Gothic Civil rights

Douglas McDaniel
Morning Sun, Iowa

September 11, 2010


The Rivalry

The sun came up cold, wolf-nosed,
with its business being your business,
and I knowing neither north nor south
and the divided elusive spheroid lands,
a football chopped into the Tao of two,
half cheese, half butter, all corn-fed,
rolling a gutter wash flood of drunk
monkeys into an Iowan university town ...

Saint Hayden Fry,
a cash-in-carrion
mixture of cow tippin',
tow truck drivin',
methane dispensin',
hawkwind huntin'
dark sunglass wearin',
Jim Jonesian hero cult
leader of the local FBI ...

Scoured and scorched
pump and dumpin' fear
into the rectangular fronted
armies of black-and-blue
burned bloody armies,
yellow hawkwind beaked,
technocratic beepee
station technocratic
fire and ice breakers
of split-levelled skyboxers
pointin' binoculars top-down
onto the grassy flats of evils
won and lost beneath
the split-level sky

A remote viewing post-toasty
hosting a contagion of baddass
battalions of flankers and big-necked
booboos, uneven into elevens,
spinning once snapped
into sun-punished twenty twos,
balancing their rises and falsies
just like the American Civil War ...

Except now the uniforms
are more graphically beautified
and the forward pass unpunted,
as opposed to the run and gas
is rewound into the awkward
remains of unconsecrated,
polyunsaturated ground ...

And there's always, outside the box
the African-American man,
remade as black boy,
who was once a believer,
shaking a broekn banana in town
since now he's unable to reach
anymore money-grubbing,
property owner theiving thieves
on the apartment rental emergency phone
in order to earn his martyred manger
for his hollowed out poverty mole mound ...

You, season ticket holder,
may have never known him
as more than a mere jersied number
but he came to school
with airy Jordan skills
glitters of jittering futurtastic
static plastic stars
in his decieved eyes

And I remember a hooded
bulldogger, drill sargeant,
screaming, "Are you a pussy?
Are you a pussy? You are just
a plain pussy, aren't you?"
I remember dirt seat and scarecrow
scared, gasping from behind my facemask ...
I remember being emasculated
for the terrifying linebacker's task
of using my helmeted Hopi head,
full of old Gaelic soul, wordy woes,
to fill a gawdamn imagined hole
so he could go home and howl
to his half-deaf bored overweight wifey
that being a wannabe Vince Lombardi,
now there, bitter cherry berry,
now, that's the life ...

Animal mind controlled
on fields of stolen gold
prairie son bloodied
all skylighted to maintain
Romanesque economies
of momentary plunder
between waves and waves
of beer and truck commercials,
church churned into jars of cash
and coins jingling into thunder ...

Yeah, Hayden Fry ...
Here's my greatest wish
to broadcast on my hopeless
limping satellite dish:
I hope that when they carry
you in that grand parade to your
tummy tucked tomb
that they bury you alive
with Iowa license plates
tattoed to your ethanol eyes ...


How to dispatch a Jehovah’s Witness

For many years, for as long as I can remember, I have fallen into the trap of getting drawn into discussions with Jehovah’s Witnesses. Not that a “trap” is such a bad thing. They are good for catching things, capturing things, altogether being good for the collection of just all kinds of things, including special information that just might get you through the day. That includes such highly specialized information as how to get to heaven, why you are going to hell, why you generally suck … and so on.
In fact, I’ve had furious but generally beneficial discussions with Jehovah’s Witnesses in the past. In fact, just once, while I was a reporter covering religion for the Prescott Courier*, I decided it would be a fine idea to do a story about what it was like to be a door-to-door evangelista. So I talked two of these Jehovahcrats to allow me to follow along with them as they went through a neighborhood. Turned out to be a fine story. I wrote it in real time, like a day in the life kinda thing. And if I learned one thing, it’s this: It’s no fucking fun being a Jehovah’s Witness.
Ever since then I’ve remained compassionate for these people. I became even more curious about them. They seemed to have the thickest skin of any style of religious zealot ever, save for perhaps Jesus of Nazereth … you know, that original polydactal cat who, in being paranormal, or, perhaps quite insane, was made to be “normal,” by agreement of many so-called wise Jesus historians, clergyman and political thinkers, about seven centuries later in a nation I believe at the time was called Byzantium, in a city I think was called Constantinople, but is now called Turkey, about seven centuries after he was reportedly crucified. In other words: When his round peg was fit into a square hole (“whole?”, hell no!) thus leaving four odd joints all quite unaccounted for at each corner. Not a perfect fit, save you, but, at least, it made for a decent book, which today they still call the Bible. Now, to complete that thought, and I apologize for getting so far off the point, there remains many clear thinking folk who at least can agree on one thing; and that is, some key portions of the real story were left out.
Those points, in fact, were always pecadillos for myself, and they became keys to my ongoing conversations (OK, OK, arguments) with Jehovah Witnesses. I mean, I’m just a reporter, after all, and to report on an event seven hundred years after the fact is just plain no bueno.
The problem with these folk, as I see them, is you can’t get a word in edgewise once they get locked into explaining to you why you can’t get to heaven, why you are going to hell, why you suck … and so on. This is one reason why people don’t like them to come to their door. It’s not so much the invasion of privacy … though that irritation is no doubt included. Getting spammed by Bible beaters is, after all, about the worst thing anyone in America has to accept without question … due to the First Amendment … and so on … no, the real problem with Jehovah’s Witnesses is you can’t tell them a fucking thing without causing a hemmorage to break in the vessels of their brains, and then they start spewing about the blood of Jesus all over you, the unhappy consumer.
The wisest amongst us just tell them to go away. But that rarely works. They are trained to remain steady. To stay thick skinned. To hang in there. To become, well, victorious. Victory, being, I suppose, an elusive hope, since absolutely nobody really knows if you’ll make it to heaven, or, hell, or why you really suck … not one fucking living soul, anyhow, despite all of the different claims, once you are dead. And so, you can probably see why they can get under your collar … in case you don’t have a First Amendment clause in your city, state, nation or planetary system …
After many years, I have become something of an expert, though, in discussions with Jehovah’s Witnesses because, well, I’m a compassionate guy who believes you can learn something from everyone, especially (and this is one of those completely quite remarkable things about life) complete fools.
But as time has gone by, I have learned to save time on these discussions, and here is my secret: Just fucking agree with them. Then, they will leave.
But don’t agree to anything else … boy, this is a fine point, the real “deal breaker,” because if they get a whiff of your dissent … they will launch into when, exactly, they can come over to launch into more disagreeable discussions, or, want to know when they can come over and take you to their church. I’ve, personally, never been in one. In fact, since the last time I was in a church, a Presbyterian haunt in St. Charles, Illinois, I completely messed up the whole sharing the sacrament ritual, since it was my first time at that place, and I was raised just straight Presbyterian, and but they didn’t do the breaking of the bread or the drinking the Kool aid thing the same way … then, later, and belive me, this never ever happened: the madman named Dr. Mengele, who brought me there, left me at the church and the pastor had to drive me home to this strange city I’d only been in for about 48 hours, without mountains, nor compass, nor stars to even remotely comprehend, much less the fucking weather, which nobody (this part being true, even understands anymore) … and it turned into a real mess, and now I’m seeking counseling for that particular unfortunate, quite traumatic event …
Anyhow, to conclude, to be a real Jehovah’s Witness de-neighborizor, you have got to scare them with something far scarier than hell, far more truthful and therefore less apparent than heaven, while at the same time, at the end, telling them you totally agree with everything they have to say.
This is how it worked for me in the morning sun the other day: I went outside my front door. I saw three of them coming toward me. I said, “Boy, you guys are really in trouble.” Then, I said, looking up at the incredibly suddenly stormy sky, “Look up there, we’ve got weaponized weather,” then making a broad circle with my other hand, creating a globe-like circumference, continued with “a hurricane headed toward the Gulf of Mexico named Earl,” and finishing it with, “and I totally believe in everything you say.”
And so, they left. Scattered, in fact, in three directions down the street. One guy went over to a house that looks like some kind of Adams Family recreation, perhaps even a Disney recreation for a very scary ride, and he got stuck trying to get his way through the bushes and deep, deep weeds. He looked back at me, and, to continue my de-neighborizing, I shouted over the increasing winds, “Don’t go there. Nobody home. Everyone who is actually home here mows their lawns.” So then he turned, after tripping through the brambles a bit more, to get away. The other two went scurrying down the street, looking for homes with fully mowed lawns, I suppose. I knew, of course, since this is basically a Presbyterian territory, that they were really headed for even worse trouble. I laughed to myself. Imagining the horrors that awaited them …About 15 minutes later, I saw them drive by in a white compact car. No doubt driving out of town as fast as they possibly could. I think I will never forget the deer-in-the headlights look of the youngest of them sitting in the back seat car. He gazed back at me in amazement as I smiled and waved. He looked as if he’d just seen a ghost. Oh God how I will miss him. He could have actually been a real friend ...