Clouds in My Heart
I find it fascinating how few of our millionaire Congress people seldom face DEATH. I mean a lot of them are meaty-beefy fat, yet they slide on through life going nightly to cocktail parties and fat-flowing banquets and state dinners but still very few of them face death. There are exceptions like Slick Willie the former McDonald's fat burger and transfat fries-eating freak who got the message via a heart attack--though boy oh boy how wonderful was his health care? How great was it that Slick Willie got the finest heart care available to mankind--thanks to We the People of the USA who are now daily being denied health care by these so-called Blue Dog (where did that bullshit term come from?) budget hackers. Why We the People of the USA are even being denied this pay-or-die Obamacare that this Wisconsin cheesehead privileged child Paul Ryan is fighting so hard to whack to death. Even that evil slop-swilling Unka Dick Cheney has benefited over and over with his multiple heart operations from We the People of the USA giving that twisted little crooked man the best health care known to man. Recently giving that sorry swine another chance at life by finding him a heart donor and paying for him a heart transplant. I wonder how many heart patients had to die being denied that heart so Unka Dick could move to the top of the waiting list? Still Unka Dick and Slick Willie are exceptions to the rule. I look at that disgusting old fart Alan Simpson from the backward state of low-populated Wyoming (Unka Dick's home state though he hasn't lived in Wyoming since when?), this man who "Yes We Can" Obama chose to head his budget reform committee. He's healthy as a horse as he enters his 80s. And even if he has a problem, he'll get the finest health care known to man. And Hillbilly Hillary (now claiming she held her breath for 35 minutes waiting to see if those Navy Seals had assassinated Osama bin Laden and then had dumped his bullet-riddled body in the ocean (I wonder why our President wouldn't have wanted to capture him alive?)), look at the world-traveling she does and all those high-fat state dinners she frequents and yet though she looks bedraggled and pooped out and a little broad in the hips, still she seems to be in great health (did you know Chelsea Clinton gets the finest health care known to man simply because she's an ex-President's daughter--now her daddy is the richest-ever ex-President--worth over a staggering 200 million dollars--from whom did he steal that money?). Even that creepy little Bush baby, Georgie Porgie, now living like an earl down in Dallas, the sorry slimebag who took us all down to the brink of economic disaster with his two lying-us-into wars (and I claim the Afghanistan war was unnecessary--Afghanistan never did a damn thing to We the People of the USA) still gets the best healthcare--he and pot-smoking Pickles. One thing that puzzles me is why President Obama has never put any blame on that little creep? Never. Doesn't even mention him when he's making a political speech. All these shams. All these privileged political dumbheads. Yet, they get the best healthcare known to man.
Little ole me, a wolf-man whose growl is evidently worse than his bite, wakes up every morning wondering if I'm going to make another day, an adventure that started two months ago when I woke up on a Sunday morning to the tune of a major heart attack. Yesterday, for instance, after taking my 7 meds, I decided I was going to try and walk around a couple of long NYC blocks to a deli on Fifth Avenue. I made it over there fine, but on the way back suddenly a truly mean and Grim-Reaper-beckoning chest pain hit me. On the corner a block away from my apartment, I had to decide did I grab a cab and head to the Bellevue Emergency Room or did I forge on to my building? I managed to forge on and got home and quickly downed an aspirin and waited for that chest pain to subside, which it finally did later in the afternoon.
I sat here the rest of the day cursing my condition. I thought of Unka Dick now recovering sweetly in the lap of luxuries from his We-the-People-of-the-USA-provided new heart. God help me if I needed a heart transplant. I'd have to go ahead and die--totally unable to afford such an expensive procedure.
And all this while this cheesehead prick, Paul Ryan, wants to cut Medicare and Social Security while he gets the best healthcare known to man simply because he's in Congress representing the backward state of Wisconsin, this same state that elected this idiot Scott Walker who they're now spending millions trying to recall. Remember, those lame-brained Republicans were swept back into a House majority by these same idiots who are sorry they elected these political freaks. Don't be surprised if Mitt "the Mormon" Romney steals this coming election. The same bozos who elected Georgie Porgie Bush to two terms are still out there--and you know they hate Blacks so much, they're liable to kick Obama out on his ass if he doesn't start mounting a fierce oppositional campaign against them--unfortunately Obama, the Great Compromiser, is totally afraid of these death-threatening morons (you can read "Mormons" for morons if you wish, I certainly do)...or is he? We shall see, shan't we.
Sunday, May 28, 2006
Down and Out in the World
I woke up this morning extremely hungry. It was a growling hunger, a hunger that made me blue. Remember a few posts back I said I might be entering a zone of poverty in my life since my rent was due, my phone bill is due, my ISP bill is here, and I owe a friend $350, and I don't have a pot to piss in. I make my living off my wits and so far in the past month, my wits have only gotten promissory monies, over 500 bucks, but this is a long holiday weekend so I have no hopes of getting a sou of it until Tuesday when the mail gets delivered again, so "What Me Worry?" and my reply is hell no; right NOW in the NOW, I'm fine and dandy, and I'm having fun right now contemplating poverty.
In the meantime, I reminded myself of Eric Blair's (George Orwell) rich little book, Down and Out in Paris and London. I quickly "Googled" the book title and, Aha!, there it was, the complete book. Right off the bat I devoured 8 chapters of the well-written, fast-paced little book.
And there is another feeling that is a great consolation in poverty. I believe everyone who has been hard up has experienced it. It is a feeling of relief, almost of pleasure, at knowing yourself at last genuinely down and out. You have talked so often of going to the dogs—and well, here are the dogs, and you have reached them, and you can stand it. It takes off a lot of anxiety. [Down and Out in Paris and London, Chapter 4, last paragraph.]
Of course, that was Paris in the late 20s and early 30s (Down and Out was published in 1933) and this is the USA in the 6th year of a new century and hard times nowadays are ferociously biting and tearing at your flesh, like the weasels that ripped old Frank Zappa's prostate to pieces. Why hell, a coffee and a roll costs you $2 these days as compared to pennies in the 20s. Still poverty progresses right along with everything else in this world, so today's impoverished may be a little better off than those of the 20s. And rooms and rent? Well, here, Orwell tells you about his room:
My hotel was called the Hôtel des Trois Moineaux. It was a dark, rickety warren of five storeys, cut up by wooden partitions into forty rooms. The rooms were small and inveterately dirty, for there was no maid, and Madame F., the patronne, had no time to do any sweeping. The walls were as thin as matchwood, and to hide the cracks they had been covered with layer after layer of pink paper, which had come loose and housed innumerable bugs. Near the ceiling long lines of bugs marched all day like columns of soldiers, and at night came down ravenously hungry, so that one had to get up every few hours and kill them in hecatombs. Sometimes when the bugs got too bad one used to burn sulphur and drive them into the next room; whereupon the lodger next door would retort by having his room sulphured, and drive the bugs back. It was a dirty place, but homelike, for Madame F. and her husband were good sorts. The rent of the rooms varied between thirty and fifty francs a week.
[Ibid. Chapter 1.]
Sounds like where I live now--"Davenport, Iowa, drinking Keokuk moonshine" remember? Except for the marching troops of bugs. I got rid of cockroaches many years ago. First of all, I quit cooking in my room. Second, I live amongst Asians and they know how to get rid of cockroaches. At one time, when I first moved int0 this two-bit room, both regular-old cockroaches and those frightening Palmetto bugs (the huge cockroaches that used to rule the roost in Key West, Florida, when I lived there) came and went as they pleased, settling down for the night maybe in my laundry basket or perhaps in the stack of newspapers, magazines, and books that usually surround me as I hack away at my writing in my loft bed. These atomic pests are mostly gone now though an occasional Palmetto giant gets loose and goes about nest searching in my bathroom in the hot months of the year. Storms approaching also sometimes set the Palmetto bugs to doing rather psychopathic things, like running about in circles or suddenly buzzing and then flying like a maniac for a few wing flaps and then falling as though dead to the floor. Touch them with your healing shoe and they miraculously come back to life. Mice? Well that's for another "down and out" time.
One thing is for sure, after reading Down and Out in Paris and London, I will never eat in an expensive hotel again, whether in New York or Paris, and certainly not in Davenport, Iowa. Getting the food prepared and served is what is important in very large eating establishments. Cooking it is not as important as the time involved in prepping it, cooking it, and serving it. If a steak falls on the floor, so what? Wipe it off and serve it anyway. If the cook sneezes in the soup, you should consider yourself lucky he doesn't have cholera; but then, too, the cook usually spits in the soup anyway. I once met a man who told me he had run a Childs Restaurant in New York City. After he told me what went on behind the swinging doors that lead from the kitchen to the dining room, I was suspicious for years when eating in any restaurant and I actually used to demand to see the kitchen if I were eating in one of those chi-chi joints that charge an arm and a leg. Kitchens are naturally dirty, but one that seems clean is good enough for me. Whether the cook spits in the food or blows his nose in it or sweats all over your plate, that you can't predict. If you go to a restaurant during the slow times, then perhaps you'll get cleaner and better prepared food, though there's no guarantee about anything once it leaves the kitchen of a restaurant.
One good hint I learned from Down and Out in Paris and London. If you only have a crusty three-day-old roll to eat, spend a sou for a head of garlic--or steal one, as Boris the Russian in Down and Out would advise you--and rub garlic all over the roll. Orwell says it leaves an aftertaste in your mouth that fools your stomach into believing you have just had a huge meal.
Another thing about this book, it's called a novel by a lot of people, but I've never read it as a novel but as a reality book. Burmese Days, that Orwell book I read as a novel because that's how it was presented to me. By the time of Animal Farm (need I tell you it kind'a shows you how a totalitarian regime rules), I was a semi-intellectual, so everything I read was turned factual in my novelistic way of intellectualizing.
for The Daily Growler