Waking the Dead

Lately I’ve blogged on college football and politics. Now I’m sick of both, and reality in general.

A few years ago I wrote a handful of short stories. It’s presumptuous of me to think anyone might be interested. Nevertheless I’ve decided to post one of them. Actually, it’s a short, short story. Or a vignette. It’s called Waking the Dead.

“Marlboro me” Fast Eddie ordered as he sped through the night. When no cigarette was immediately forthcoming, he barked “Marlboro me now!”

“Can’t get this thing to light” Melvin whined. He was flicking the Bic butane furiously, but to no avail.

Eddie began fishing in his pants pocket for a Zippo. “Do I have to do everything myself?” he growled. After a few seconds he found the lighter, then repeated the fishing ritual in his shirt pocket. Initially it produced a broken cigarette. “Shit.”

Melvin finally managed to get the Bic to burn, but not long enough to light the two smokes dangling from his lips. “Damn” he whispered.

“Beer me bitch” Eddie ordered. Melvin reached between his feet into a brown paper sack and produced a sweaty can of Budweiser. He opened it and passed it to Eddie.

They’d been out partying. It’s what they did most every night. There was no work or school to get in the way. There were only the parents who financed their excursions because it was easier than trying to steer them towards adulthood.

“I gotta piss” Fast Eddie said as he veered sharply to his right. Everything and body in the car lurched hard to the left. They were used to being tossed about. Eddie wasn’t much of a driver, even when sober.

Melvin’s eyes grew wide as he realized where they were. “Why we goin in here?” There was more than a hint of desperation in his cracking voice.

“Cause I gotta piss you ass-wipe” Eddie replied. He clicked on the high-beams as he made his way altogether too fast through the old cemetery. When he’d gone half-a-mile from the main road, he pulled to the side. “Let’s go” he said through a sneer.

“I ain’t goin nowhere dude. Let’s just get the hell out of here. Now!” Melvin was the chicken in the bunch. He was also very superstitious.

“Get out you pussy” Eddie ordered as he climbed from the car. “We ain’t leavin till you had yoself a good look around”.

Melvin obeyed, his head turning in every direction as he tried to see through the dark. He followed Eddie from the road, taking extra long strides to shorten the distance between them. “Oh man” he muttered half a loud. “Wait up Eddie”.

Eddie stopped and waited for Melvin. “See, there ain’t nothin to be afraid of.” He unzipped his fly and aimed for a tombstone.

“What you doin man?” Melvin shrieked. He looked down at the headstone where Eddie was preparing to piss. The moon, through a brief break in the clouds, illuminated it for an instant. John Watson: Born 12/13/1903 Died 12/07/1941.

“Man you a crybaby” Eddie said as he began to pee. “Ole Watson here don’t mind none, do ya Watson?”

Melvin was sure something rustled just off in the shadows. “What was that man?” he whispered.

Just then a booming voice roared from the darkness, “I’ll drag you two to hell with me!” Before the last syllable rang out, Fast Eddie and Melvin were in a dead sprint across the grave yard. Screaming like school girls, they made their way into headstones, trees, and bushes. Much of their clothing, and a fair amount of their hides, was left on the barbwire fence that separated the cemetery from a cow pasture. The boys didn’t slow down until they reached a convenience store a couple miles down the road.

Curtis Mathers, caretaker for the cemetery, stepped into the light coming from Eddie’s open door. From a pocket he produced a half pint of cheap bourbon. “Punks” Curtis sneered as he unscrewed the top and took a long pull. “I hope ya breaks somethin” he called into the night. He peered into the car where two cigarettes burned in the ashtray. “Leather” Curtis mumbled as he undid the buttons on the fly to his overalls. As he began relieving himself in Eddie’s seat, he heard a commotion coming from the back.

“What cha doin?” a groggy voice asked from the car’s rear seat. It belonged to Tater Pickens. He’d passed out a couple hours earlier.

“Awe, I’m just pissin in your buddy’s car” Curtis replied.

A couple seconds later Tater howled with laughter. “Me too” the boy roared, just before passing back out in his urine soaked Levi’s.

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Mal Moore must go!

With the Rich Rodriguez debacle, Athletic Director Mal Moore has, once again, embarrassed the University of Alabama. His inability is the stuff of legend. It’s time to put him out to pasture and out of our misery.

Here, in a nutshell, is the case against Mal the Aged.

  • Moore made the call to keep former ‘Bama coach Mike DuBose after he copped to sexually harassing his secretary. He was kept in reward for winning the SEC and in hopes that he’d bring the national title to Tuscaloosa in 2000. When his coaching ability proved commensurate with his character, he was finally fired.
  • Moore hired Mike Price who embarrassed Alabama before he could even coach a game. Apparently Coach Price has/had a drinking problem. Based on his behavior once he came South, it’s hard to believe that half the people in Washington weren’t aware of it. Obviously, however, Mal Moore wasn’t.
  • Moore fired former Crimson Tide quarterback and Alabama coach Mike Shula sometime close to midnight on a Sunday, after letting him swing in the wind for a week. Never mind that Shula is one of the family. Never mind that he came to Alabama when nobody else wanted the job. Never mind that he’s a Shula for Christ’s sake. It was an utterly classless move and indicative of the state of things at Alabama.
  • And now, when coaching prodigy Rich Rodriguez was poised to sign a multi-million dollar deal with the Tide, lose lips at Alabama sank their chance to close the deal. This was Moore’s deal to louse up, and he did. Alabama is again a laughing stock.

As long as Moore is around Alabama, there’s no chance Alabama will be back around the top of the college football world. He’s a disaster plain and simple.

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Rich Rodriguez gets last minute reprieve

Apparently the media in the great state of Alabama were sadly misinformed as to the the depth of Rich Rodriguez’s commitment to the University of Alabama. It’s being widely reported that Coach Rodriguez is staying put in West Virginia.

Yet another coaching search has been badly bungled by the decrepit, obviously incompetent Mal Moore. ‘Bama’s ability to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory is becoming more legendary than their football heroics from long ago. It’s just pitiful.

No matter who takes the job now, and no one with any name recognition is left to turn the Tide down, this is yet another public relations disaster for the Alabama football program. It’s been years since Alabama was feared. Now they’re just funny.

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Rich Rodriguez is rich!

Well Alabama athletic director Mal Moore got his man. Nope, it’s not Steve Spurrier. It’s not even Nick Saban. It’s Rich Rodriguez of West Virginia, or so WKRG in Mobile is reporting. (Don’t bother checking the web site. Looks like they update it about once a week and it’s only been five days since the last one.)

Coach Rodriguez has built his alma mater, West Virginia University, into a national power. Last year’s Mountaineers systematically destroyed SEC champion Georgia in the Sugar Bowl, which is a pretty good indication that his philosophy and system will indeed work in the SEC.

Whether it’ll work right away, however, is another matter. Part of Rodriguez’s system is based on a highly mobile, option quarterback. Alabama has an up and coming star at quarterback in John Parker Wilson, but he’s not an option quarterback. Whether it’s curtains for John Parker, or Rodriguez’s offensive system, remains to be seen.

Additionally, Rodriguez’s West Virginia team is two deep. That’s part of his philosophy. Alabama figures to be thin for at least another year, if not two, due to scholarship losses that ran from 2003 through 2005.

Hopefully the fan base at Alabama will grasp that it’ll take at least a couple of years to get things rolling under Rodriguez. If they are a little patient, good times may very well be back in Tuscaloosa by the end of the decade.

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Around WordPress.com – 12/6/06

Here are a few more posts I found interesting, amusing, whatever.

Slide by and leave a comment. You don’t have to agree with ’em. It’s just blogging.

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Filed under Economics, Medicine, Military, Music, Pets, Politics, Science, Sociology, Sports, WordPress.com Blogs

Around WordPress.com – 12/5/06

Here are a few posts from around WordPress.com.  I’m linking to them because I enjoyed reading them and thought maybe somebody else would too. They aren’t in any order, other than how they popped up in my aggregator , or the order I found them via their tags.

That I liked something doesn’t mean I agree with it, believe it, or anything else. It just means I liked it.

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Filed under Economics, Medicine, Movies, News, Politics, Science, Sociology, WordPress.com Blogs

“War on Terror” a misnomer

We need to rename the “War on Terror”. Maybe we should call it “Guarding Against Terrorism”. I don’t know, but I’m open to suggestions.

9/11 scared the bejesus out of me. I realize fear is unbecoming of a middle-aged Southern boy. Nevertheless it did. Still does. It’s time to put it in perspective though.

I never thought twice as the US embarked on the “War on Terror”. It was obvious something had to be done about al-Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan. I’d have nuked ’em, but nobody asked me.

To hear our government tell it, we’re still waging the “War on Terror”. We will be, they promise, for a generation. Our leaders want us to believe our way of life is under attack. It may be, but not from the terrorists. The politicians want us to be afraid so they can usurp our rights and do things like invade other countries in our name. It’s worked well for them so far.

The fact is, though, being afraid of Muslim fanatics is just ridiculous. Yes, 9/11 was a horrific event. If terrorists could pull something similar off on a somewhat regular basis, then it would make sense to fear them. But to fear them, in light of who and what they really are, is ridiculous. (But flattering, I’m sure, for the terrorist themselves).

Oil is the only thing we need that is produced in the Muslim world. It seems safe to surmise that if the western oil companies shut down their operations, dismantled their wells, storage facilities, and pipelines, the oil would stay right where it is, under the sand, until someone from outside the Muslim world extracted it. Muslims lack the technology to do much of anything for themselves. Sadly, the only things they are good at making are terrorists and WMD. Such a people don’t constitute much of threat to our way of life.

Consider tiny Israel. They are some six million strong, surrounded by a billion Muslims, most of whom profess to want Israel wiped from the face of the earth. But they’re still there, right in the Muslim’s backyard. The US is infinitely more powerful than Israel, not to mention exponentially further removed from the apex of the threat.

It’s time to rename the “War on Terror”. It’s time to tell the government we expect them to protect us, not scare us to death, and certainly not infringe on our rights. In reality the politicians are a much greater threat to the American way of life than are the terrorists.

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Filed under Economics, Military, Politics, Terrorism