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Twisting all the bad things into good

Dec 31, 2011

The Nitty Gritty 30: Headshots

Oh my dear, what have I gone and done now?
It's curtain call, I'm about to take my last bow
What did you expect from me?
Senses Fail, Calling All Cars

 WEDNESDAY. SEPTEMBER 7th, 2010. 5:15ish     

            A man without a country has been captured by an enemy without a face. I don't know where I have been taken for interrogation, but it resembles a POW camp. This is not Ho Chi Minh Trail in Vietnam. This is Military Trail in Delray Beach. At least I know where I'm at.
            At least I know that if I can escape, I can find my way home.

            This compound has been strategically positioned less than a half klick from a WalMart. It is surrounded by fences that extend inward on a 45 degree angle at the top. It is wrapped with that razor wire that tears into flesh in a way that makes barbed wire seem as threatening as a friendship bracelet. Unless you were a world class pole vaulter, there was no getting out.
             Getting in, on the other hand, was not a problem. With a police escort, they let you walk right through the front door. The officer hands over my personal belongings to the people at the front desk. Everyone is sizing me up as the handcuffs come off. Before leaving, he wishes me luck with my lobotomy or whatever it is that I am there for. I shake his hand and thank him. I'm not exactly sure what I was thanking him for. I guess it was for dropping me off somewhere that wasn't the Palm Beach County Jail.
            I look like some 3rd world refugee who just washed up on the beach and got picked up before he could reach A1A. My feet are bare. My Abercrombie's are ripped from above the gash in my knee to just above my ankle. My white Polo t-shirt needs to have the underarms bleached and then be thrown in the trash. I can't remember the last time I showered, shaved, slept, ate, or had a rational thought. All I know is that my parents and my best friend have conspired to have me institutionalized.
             In Florida, they call it being Baker Acted.
             In Pennsylvania, they call it being 302'd.
             I call it being fucked over by the people closest to me.

             I hear the door unlock. Some guy walks me through the doors and gives me some bullshit about how everything's gonna be alright. I hear the doors automatically lock behind me. He leads me down a very drab hospital-looking hallway. We pass some small rooms with cots in them. He tells me to have a seat in one of the plastic chairs outside an office. I'm waiting to see the lady inside who is sitting at her desk. I'm watching her multitask as she fills out paperwork while pretending to listen to the rambling of some girl who is clearly unstable in her emotions.
            I sit there like I'm waiting to see the principal to face her accusations. She calls out to me. "James? You have a phone call. You can use the phone on the wall".
            I walk over and pick up the phone. I doubt it's anyone I want to speak to since I hate everyone I have ever known.
            It's my mom. This should be good. At least my dad didn't kill her. She is talking as if there had been no conflict between them. There is no way they could have settled this kind of madness in less than an hour. The phone must be tapped. I never knew my mother had it in her to be so scandalous. She is acting like I am the one with the problem. She sounds heartbroken. She is a fine actress, my mother. Now I know where my histrionics come from. Since our dialogue is being recorded, she is hamming it up. This whole scene was written by my father, who is also directing this family drama. After a few well scripted words of motherly concern, she pretends to be holding back tears. Bravo, mom, bravo. She attempts to choke up the audience with her next line.
           "Honey, your dad and I wanna know, do you want to come home and be a family again?"
            And the Oscar goes to...Jimmy's mom for her role in "Making The Firstborn Think He's A Crazy Person". The audience does not go wild. The audience is silent.
             I tell my Meryl Streep of a mother, "Not if you guys are going to involve me in whatever is going on".
            "What are you talking about? Your dad is right here, he's fine. And I'm not having some clandestine affair".
             The lies are too much to listen to. How far are they going to take this? I took Intro To Acting in college. I can play along. I ask, "And I suppose you're gonna try to tell me that I wasn't in Vegas?"
           "No honey, you weren't in Vegas".
            Wow. She really deserved that Best Actress Award. She sounds so sincerely sad, but she is lying. I know I was in Vegas. I haven't always been the best son, but I've never talked back or raised my voice to my mom. Unbelievably, I've never even cursed in front of her. Then again, I've never been put in a nut house to cover her lies before. It has certainly been a day of firsts. I'm going to do some method acting of my own.
            This is the part in the movie when the villain sets fire to what the hero loves most.
           "You know what, mom? I DON'T NEED THIS SHIT!"
             I yell.
             I hang up.
             I END SCENE.
             I FADE TO BLACK.

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