Thursday, June 11, 2009

Phantom Pains



I once wrote a poem about a game where you put a rattlesnake in a box and tried to take a cookie off its head. I don't know why people played this game in my hometown, but they did. It didn't, as people often say of something gone awry, even seem like a good idea at the time. Boredom, I guess. Or desire for drama. Like the time in a storefront church I attended briefly when someone claimed a demonic squirrel had been looking, no spying, on them every Friday for a month. At the same time. Let's just say that the first time I read Flannery O'Connor, I did not think it was a strange world she had created. For me, she told it like it was.

I suppose my world is just as strange as all that now except it's reflected on television. We've even left the weirdness of Michael Jackson behind (at least he had talent as a child even if it meant giving up his childhood in service of being forced to do complicated dance routines and sing love songs to rats) and have a slew of depressing dating shows where contestants vie for the love of a good woman, man, cougar (whoever invented this term needs to be shot), etc. I never watched "The Cougar" but did see an ad where the host, a hopped up Vivica Fox tried to make it work, announcing the arrival of the lovely lady to her group of young lads barely weaned off the teet, much less X-Box. "The girl's got legs," Vivica says. So does everyone I know except those men who got them blown off during the war or amputated because of gangrene. One such man was one of my dad's friends. He'd take off his prosthetics at the end of the day, content that there was nowhere he needed to go and pour himself a glass of Jack and Coke. He'd use one of his fake legs as a cup holder and watch "All in the Family." No taking cookies off the heads of snakes for him! Those snakes could keep their cookies and he'd drink until he fell asleep, a medication for all the pain from something that wasn't there anymore.

Michelle's Spell of the Day
"The hardest part of faith is the last hour." David Wilkerson

Cocktail Hour
Drinking scotch suggestion: Laphroaig

Benedictions and Maledictions
Happy Thursday!

7 comments:

Charles Gramlich said...

Loved the story of the guy using his prosthetic for a cup holder. That's making do. And I suppose if you've had real excitement you don't care much for the manufacted kind. Love that quote about faith too. That is certainly true.

the walking man said...

I am curious who got bit by the snake more often, the one placing the cookie or the one removing it?

When did our world become such that a whole new genre of entertainment sprang up called reality TV? My God if any of that were even a dim reflection of my reality I would do the world a favor and end my life.

A man with no legs, a glass of Jack and Coke with his prosthetic as cup holder sleeping comfortably in his chair. Now that is a reality I could watch on TV.

Wil said...

Great story Michelle. Also, please take care of your legs!

Wil Harrison.com

R's Musings said...

Seems to me that "The Cougar" is also "a medication for all the pain from something that isn't there" for her anymore. Our society is so youth-obsessed. I can't imagine what kind of conversation I could even have with a 25 year old man right now. I loved playing video games on my Atari 2600 way back in the day, but that was then -- I have no desire to sit on a sofa for hours glued to the TV, playing X-Box. I would much prefer a great dinner, a glass of wine, and some stimulating conversation. Thank God I'm not single! :)

Cheri said...

My favorite "reality" television is medical stories... about the morbidly obese. Though I'd like to see one of Flannery's stories as a TV show...

Anonymous said...

HA, CAROLINA COUGER WAS MY CB'R MONIKER BACK IN THE DAY. THEY WERE SO MUCH FUN ESPECIALLY ON LONG TRIPS AND TO BE WARNED OF TROOPERS IF ONE WAS SPEEDING WHICH OF COURSE I NEVER WAS. HA.

Scott said...

Michelle,

Not a fan of the term 'cougar' either...and I hate TV more and more. 'Deadliest Warrior' is the only thing I've watched recently.

Take care, Darlin'!