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Twisting all the bad things into good

Apr 25, 2012

CHAPTER 19. THE PATRON SAINT OF . . . WHATEVER. Atypical Saturday





Times have changed
Times are strange
Here I come 
But I ain't the same

Ozzy, Mama I'm Coming Home    


        SATURDAY AFTERNOON. 9/11/10

        "I spoke with your attorney."
        "My attorney?"
        I don't have an attorney. I'm a loser.
        What's next? Is my conglomeration going public?

        "Your attorney friend" my dad says.
        Big difference between having your own attorney and having a friend who happens to be an attorney.
        "Are you talking about Mike?"
        "Yeah. Mike."
        "You talked to Mike? How'd you talk to Mike?"
         "Jeff gave me his number."
        "Ok. What did you and Mike talk about?"
        "He was really concerned about you. What a super nice guy."
        "Yeah, he is. I don't know what I would have done without him. He really came through for me. I was facing three felonies for those pills. Mike's awesome."
        "How did you get hooked up with him?"
        "He went to Pope, but he graduated the year before me."
        "We spoke for a while about your case. Why didn't you say anything about the D.U.I.?"
        "Wow. So that did happen. I wasn't sure."
        "You thought it was one of your hallucinations?"
        "I don't know what I thought. I guess I kind of forgot about it."
        "You forgot you got arrested?"
        "No. I just...I don't know... it's weird, I can still remember my hallucinations as if they happened, but the weeks leading up to them are just a big blur. I mean, I'm not even sure about when I got the DUI."
        "You got it on the 25th."
        "Oh.The 25th. Okay."

        He observed my moment of silence.        

        "Of August," he says. "August 25th."
        "Ohhhh, alright. So, like 2 weeks ago. I really lost track of the days."
        And the weeks...and the months...and the years.

        I tell him, "I only know today's date because everyone is watching the 9/11 anniversary coverage on the tv. Man, you believe it's been nine years?"
        He didn't shout "ALLAHU AKBAR" or anything, but it was clear that he was more concerned with a slightly smaller American tragedy.
       "You have to go to court on the 25th. That's a week from Wednesday. I'm gonna fly down on Monday the 23rd. We'll get packed up and we'll drive back on Thursday. When you got the DUI, did they take your license?"
       "Yeah, it was already suspended."
       "How much did you have to drink when they pulled you over?"
       "Not that much. I shared two buckets of beers with my friend and his son, so I had probably had  three or four."
       Then I shared another bucket with myself after they left.
       "The only reason I even went out that night was because I thought a few beers might help me get some sleep."
        They did. I passed out as soon as the cell door closed behind me.

       "Jimmy, we're gonna put everything that happened behind us. All of that is in the past.  Your mom and I just want to know you're gonna be alright on your own for a week until I get down there?"    
       "Yeah, I'll be fine. Don't worry about me."
       Laugh. Out. Fucking. Loud.

       "Everybody's excited for you to move up. You're gonna make a fresh start. We're gonna make up for lost time, we're gonna go to the gym everyday, you're gonna get in really good shape."
       With a bad back and no painkillers, I don't see myself doing the whole L.A. Fitness routine, but I keep that to myself.
        "Just don't get in any trouble. Don't drive anywhere, not even around the corner. You're starting with a clean slate today."

        "I know. I'm not going to do anything stupid."   
        "How's it going in there?"
        "Actually, dad, it's not that bad. I kinda feel like I'm at summer camp."
        "You're fucked up, son."
        He didn't say that, but he probably thought it.
        He did say my mother wanted to talk to me.
        My mom got on the line.
        I couldn't even hear the shame in her voice.
        "Hi, mom. So, I hear you're glad your crazy son is coming home?"
        "Of course. I can't wait."
        "Uh, thanks, Mom. You're supposed to say "You're not crazy, son"."
        "I've been praying for this for years, that we'd all be together again. I just always thought you'd get married, have kids and never leave Florida."

        This is the part where I totally distort my mother's prayer.

        The Gospel According to Peg.
        Chapter 2
        Verses 1999 - 2008

        Are you there God? It's me, Margaret MacDonald. 
        Sweet Jesus. I know you did not answer my prayers when I begged you to not let my husband go to prison for eight and a half years or when I pleaded with you to let our family stay together, but I'm still going to ask for a little divine intervention.
       Please, Lord, I'm begging you to allow my first born child to fuck up his life really bad, not so bad that he dies, just bad enough that he has nowhere to go but to come home to his mommy.
       And Lord, please allow his self-destruction to happen  before he meets a really hot girl dumb enough to marry him and bear his children. If he ever does have children, I'd like to be close enough to them to know he is not dipping their pacifiers in Jack Daniels because he thinks it will help them fall asleep. 
       Maybe all my prayers are in vain, but for some reason, I keep praying. Even if my son does not deserve his prayers to be answered, that's if he even prays anymore, I have faith that, if it be your will, you might still answer mine.  
       I never believed that Da Vinci Code bullsh...I mean, blasphemy, so I know you never had any children of your own, so maybe your Blessed Mother can explain to you what it's like to have a son. Yes, "we're all God's children", but you know what I mean. You know everything.
       I'm sorry, Lord, but I have to go, that's my other line's beeping. That might be him right now, calling from Florida, or it might be my daughter who I never see because she lives on the opposite side of the continent in Canada where she stayed after we left the country. It's neither one of my kids, but I still have to answer it. It's a call from a federal prison, where my husband lives. 
        But I don't have to tell you.
        You already knew.
        K, bye.



       She said "k, bye" before hanging up with me.
       She must have forgot to say, "Son, you're not crazy."
       But she didn't have to tell me.
       I already knew.
       




     

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