Sunday, July 31, 2011

Rick Perry’s Texas Will Not Defend Christian Family Values!

It is nearly unimaginable, really. I just can’t seem to wrap my head around it, and it gnaws away at me in the night, running counter to everything I thought I trusted, believed. Everything I thought I knew. It defies conventional wisdom and it laughs condescendingly at your momma, at apple pie, at baseball, and at puppies.

It laughs at goddamn puppies!                            

But still, I am a firm believer in laying the truth out on the table, so as much as it pains me to say these words, prepare yourself. Here it is:


I mean, Jesus, Mary, and Noah know that I’ve been trying my hardest.

I’m sitting in the Harris County D.A.’s office with my wife, Dana, her husband, Anthony (who is also my brother), and his husband, Aesop (who is also my husband), and we are trying to turn ourselves in for Double Bigamy (All the Way). We’re prepared to reap what we’ve sown. Eat our peas. Face Lady Justice.

A young black assistant D.A. sits across from us, looking for all the world like he only wants to go home. He is holding a printout of the Texas bigamy statute, which we have helpfully provided him:
§ 25.01. BIGAMY.  (a) An individual commits an offense if:               
(1)  he is legally married and he: (A)  purports to marry or does marry a person other than his spouse in this state, or any other state or foreign country, under circumstances that would, but for the actor's prior marriage, constitute a marriage;  or (B)  lives with a person other than his spouse in this state under the appearance of being married…
(e)  An offense under this section is a felony of the third degree.
The assistant D.A. wipes his glasses again. He says, “I’m sorry, folks.” He says, “I’ve talked to my boss, and we are not going to bring charges.”

He glances up at my t-shirt for the fifth time. My t-shirt says this: “Warren Jeffs is My Hero!”

And the reason Warren Jeffs is my hero is because he managed to get the State of Texas to prosecute him for – among other things – violating the very criminal bigamy statute that I just quoted above. He’s on trial for it even as we speak. Warren Jeffs is my hero because – best I can tell – it’s not an easy proposition convincing Rick Perry’s Texas to uphold the solemn dignity of traditional Christian marriage.

The assistant D.A., he rolls his eyes and says, “Look. If I were y’all, and I was trying to get arrested to… make whatever point y’all are obviously trying to make? I’d head on up to your small rural counties. Taylor, Jefferson, Fort Bend. You’d stand a better chance of pissing someone off somewhere like that.”

So I am a bigamist who can’t get arrested in my home town, but I take my twisted, anti-biblical family and I head on up to Huntsville, where they run the famed Texas Death Machine. Back in the Nineties, they were frying a baddy every other day here. Huntsville doesn’t pussyfoot around! Huntsville doesn’t coddle criminals like some New England hippie commune! Surely in Huntsville of all places, a carful of bigamists doesn’t stand a chance.

We walk into the Walker County D.A.’s office with signed confessions. We’ve spent the morning putting “Wanted” posters up on telephone poles all over town, and Aesop is wearing a t-shirt on which he’s written this in pink permanent marker: “Sometimes I’m a Faggot.”

We talk to a seasoned county prosecutor who quickly convinces himself that we’re trying to get thrown in jail to get some of that sweet, sweet prison rape we’ve heard so much about. Then he informs us it’s his lunch hour and kicks us out of the building.

So I am a bigamist who can’t herself get arrested in East Texas: In the World Capital City of Lethal Injection.

And I can’t get arrested in Abilene. And I can’t get arrested in Sugar Land. I can’t even get arrested in Waco, even though I bring my handy King James Bible with all the relevant verses highlighted in pink.

And I have to tell you, we are getting a little desperate. I mean, what do you do when you cannot get the Great State of Texas to enforce its own marriage laws? Read your Genesis. It was Adam and Eve, by God, not Adam and Steve and Alice and Eve and whomever else happened to be standing around at the time.

But me, in my heart, I know. I know when God falls to the wayside and his holy Word is ignored and all looks to be for naught, there still exists one man who can be counted on to save the day. A man called by God at an early age. A man who prays for rain and tells his flock of constituents to do the same. A man who NEXT WEEK is inviting all people of (Christian) faith to join him at Houston’s Reliant Stadium for a Day of Fasting and Prayer.

I know Rick Perry cannot abide Double Bigamy (All the Way) in his state on his watch. When I send him that large envelope full of signed confessions, marriage certificates, wedding photos, Leviticus excerpts, the Texas Penal Code, and complaints from my neighbors, I just KNOW that this abomination will not go unpunished!

But now it’s a month later and still I am left free to walk the streets and flaunt Texas, Jesus, and Good Taste.

It’s a month later and I am left wondering whatever happened to the traditional Christian Texas family values I knew as a child?

What the heck does a pervert need to do to get punished in Rick Perry’s Texas?

Monday, July 18, 2011

There’s a World Going On Underground

Finding that cricket was the important thing. It was the turning point, the morale boost I’d been needing for several days.

It’s funny how that works, idn’t it? How something so small – as literally and figuratively insignificant as a cricket – can loom so large, psychologically speaking. How it can make its appearance and save the day at just precisely the right moment.

I mean… a cricket!

But it was 2 a.m., and me and Dwayne the Security Guard and Marty the Residentially-Disadvantaged Cripple were taking turns with the flashlight in the tunnels beneath downtown Houston, trying to find somewhere with a shower in it. And that’s when I saw the cricket.

And so I hooted and I hollered and I snatched the little hopping dude up off the ground before Dwayne or Marty knew what was going on, really, and then we found us a little spot at the bottom of a stairwell a little ways down from there. Dwayne and I stretched out our legs and we touched feet to form four walls of blue jeans all around that cricket, so he couldn’t hop away.

And then I reached into my backpack and I pulled out this little box. I opened it. It was just a little box like had probably housed a necklace or… you know, something like that, originally. I cupped my hand over the hairy thing inside, lifted it and I set it down in the general vicinity of the cricket I’d caught.

And there she was! Saint Athanasius the tarantula.

Despite their being right next to each other now, the cricket did not seem to take any notice of Saint Athanasius, and Saint Athanasius did not seem to take any notice of the cricket. This cricket I’d caught, who was, theoretically speaking anyway, Saint Athanasius’ dinner.

The cricket wandered off and away, and I tried to corral it back towards Saint Anastasius with a ball point pen. I had the ball point pen, I mean. Not the spider. Dwayne the Security Guard and Marty the Residentially-Disadvantaged Cripple kept their eyes fixed on the tarantula at all times.

“So,” Dwayne said, never moving his eyes from the spider. “What I don’t understand is, aren’t you married to two people? If one kicks you out, can’t you just go live with the other one?”

The cricket was hiding from me directly beneath Saint Athanasius’ many legs. Saint Athanasius herself, honed by millions of years of evolution to be efficient and brutal predator, was lifting individual legs – first this one, then that, then that, and so forth – so as to avoid touching the cricket. Hell, the cricket was the safest living thing around there. At this rate, I was going to die sooner than that cricket.

I said, “Well, there’s the rub, Dwayne. I tried that.”

I said, “Dana kicks me out for a week or two at a time once, maybe twice a year. Sometimes more, sometimes less, all depending on what it is she’s caught me smoking. But this time! This time, I figured HEY! I have a back-up ball-and-chain! You know?”

Saint Athanasius was very, very slo-o-o-owly – almost imperceptibly, really – going through some sort of extremely convoluted exercise with all her legs to make her way away from the cricket. Although I couldn’t be sure, the cricket looked to be attempting to give chase surreptitiously.

I said, “So I did what any good spouse would do. I headed over to Aesop and Anthony’s house. I walked right in and I called out, ‘Honey! I’m home!’ Just like it was Ozzie and Harriet or the Cleavers or… whatever… The Huxtables, maybe…”

When the cricket brushed up against Saint Athanasius this time, the tarantula sunk a quick fang into it, tagging and then releasing it. You ask me, I think she just wanted the cricket to leave her alone and hoped this non-lethal injury would end the matter.

But the cricket, he seemed eager. He came back around, basically harassing the spider now.

I said, “And what does my husband of four months – four months! I mean, we’re newlyweds! Newlyweds! – What’s he say to me in response? Hmm?”

My companions… I don’t even think they heard what I was saying by this point. Which is just as well, really, because I was mostly talking just to get it out and not to be heard. The wheels on Marty the Residentially-Disadvantaged Cripple’s wheelchair squeaked a little as he pushed himself closer to the vermin between my legs…

I said, “My husband, Aesop, says to me, ‘You can’t just move in here, Katy! This is my home with Anthony. This is our home, not a college dorm’.”

Everything was still for a second or two, and then Saint Athanasius made her move. She hopped and then a couple of her legs and a couple of the other things that looked like legs cupped the cricket as she sank her fangs deep into it. And that cricket, why, he twitched for the last time and then turned white and sort of crumpled in upon himself.

Now, me, I’d seen it a hundred times or more, but Dwayne the Security Guard and Marty the Residentially-Disadvantaged Cripple, they were most mesmerized by the show, so I kept right on talking.

I said, “My own husband! Won’t let me stay with him on account of his homosexual relationship!”

I said, “I tell you, this is yet another prime example of how gay marriage is undermining traditional heterosexual marriage in this country…”

The show was over. Saint Athanasius was finishing off the cricket and I was finishing off my story. I was back to thinking about finding somewhere to take a shower. As it turns out, daily showers are the biggest hurdle to my living permanently in a sort of gypsy state, as a land pirate or such…

As I set Saint Athanasius back in her box and her box back in my backpack, it hit me: “Gyms!”

I said, “All those big law firms have gyms in them. And where there’s gyms, there’s showers! And where there’s showers, there’s a way for me to stop stinking like this…”

Dwayne the Security Guard held the flashlight as we came to a crossroads in the tunnels. “Which one d’ya think, little lady? Haynes & Boone? Baker Botts?”

I chose a direction, sort of randomly, and off we went. Dwayne the Security Guard. Marty the Residentially-Disadvantaged Cripple. And me.

Oh, and Saint Athanasius, too, of course.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Black Metal Musings

This is the Good Stuff.

Not like the old stuff. The Good Stuff. The stuff that reaches right down your throat and pummels you with your own intestines. A rain of salt on a raw fresh wound and a straight shot of hot sauce like the Devil’s Jism. It’s the stuff that’ll grow hair on your chest overnight, buddy – maybe sooner – results may vary depending on individual temperament.

This is the Good Stuff. The stuff that sets fire to all the sacred cows, and your wife makes it through about ten seconds before begging you turn it off, please, just turn it off, but by then it’s already too late and in the blast, the poor thing’s eyebrows have been singed right off.

Like this.
It’s tectonic plates shifting beneath the world’s last and slowest glacier and your ankle has somehow gotten wedged in between.

Any art that’s worthy of the name – and much of what isn’t – is an acquired taste. It took me the better part of a decade before I could make my way past David Tibet’s vocals and make any sense of what it was Current 93 was offering. But at its most potent, Black Metal brings difficult listening to a whole new level entirely. This is out-out past the last outpost of civilization and up-up past the snowline in the dark in that season when the sun never rises. It’s the diving headfirst into the shadow side of yourself that you’d never ever volunteer to see.

Ahhhh the hell with it. If there is one thing forty-five years of Rolling Stone-quality music journalism ought to have taught us every one, it’s that talking about art – about music, about something that is at bottom pure experience – it’s less than useless. It’s a Mortal Sin, an exercise in extreme arrogance, an attempt to feign cleverness by fossilizing into words something that isn’t about that languagy part of the brain in the first place.

Diss-o-nance. Tre-mel-o.

The only explanation of the thing is the thing itself.