“A Jacket With Teeth”

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“A Jacket With Teeth”

Never the rain slicker that gets dirty or sloppy spaghetti sauce, or spilled derogified coffee cream souring as it dries. No, but,instead it’s the sweet cashmere, velvet, valore, denim jackets of the world with the satin inlays, maybe? The ones with the puffy breasts, and secretive pockets for secretive things. Those are the ones.The ones that when you roll around in a pile leaves, the schmere of dog shit remains on the sleeve just at the cuff. Jackets that call for bird droppings from above. Coat coverings that are prideful and vain, the ones that tempt fate. Magnets for malign. I love how people take offense  at their sports team of choice, and  complain about having to add another championship patch to their jacket because there’s no more room or that it makes the design look a bit off. then somehow, whatever they do, they up and die and you see them in the casket with their modified jackets containing all the spoils of death all the roiling churning rotting meat. tokens put inside the pockets.packs of cigarettes and cigarillo, lucky poker chips, perhaps a used pen that doesn’t write under water. also, when no one was looking, that young gal you had the good time with sneaks in a pair of panties that were there when the lights went out. those are the stuff,  the things. the portable property that follow you to your penitent end, pertinent end, palliative end. patience gone with the rest, and sometimes we wear Champion sweatshirts out, and then it rains. the material gets moist and soaked, and thoroughly heavy, weary heavy.  those were all the rage for a while. they were items of status. if you didn’t have one in my neighborhood when you were a kid, then you weren’t with the cool kids. clothes make the man. I don’t know, one time John Rivers showed up my house with a garbage bag full of secondhand jackets which he was going to sell to me for a modest price. I can’t remember if I bought one, but I do remember trying one on for size,  and then I thought about his mother and the times that I witnessed her humanity. For me, I was just as excited in the second grade when I received my first Baracuta jacket with the tartan inlay. It was a gift for receiving the body of Christ into my body. sacrilicious. there as a little piece, a loop,  in the back that you could hang your jacket out on a hook. between that, and the Scally cap I was as third generation Irish-American as they come; getting a particular and peculiar parochial education. playing street hockey until the dusk overcame us. listening for church bells so that we knew when to be home in time for dinner. Spaghetti-O’s Spaghetti-O’s, Beefaroni, what is it? Full bellies in short nights, ended with early morning entry behind regimented school yard lines, that ended up somewhere in dark coat rooms with book-bags, and lunch pails, and lunchboxes and Kelly green Baracutas hanging in sequence. Secret pockets full of string, and Star Wars figures, and Topps Hockey Sticker Book Stickers. Ready to be pealed and applied. Inside pocket made a nice place to stash a plastic .45 revolver, and you could get to it in a pinch. and then when we heard about being able to obtain a switchblade comb at the U.S.S. Constitution Gift Shop, we went all in, until our parents found out. Regardless of uncombed hair, Michael Jackson taught us that we needed switchblades to settle our differences. Thank God, we never made it to Neverland. I don’t know if a Baracuta jacket could have protected me from that broken soul. wrapped neatly around my waist on a spring trip to Pine Banks. Perfectly, Baracuta. I jacket with teeth. And I chased the girls around the rocks, listening to the delights of Footloose Soundtracks, and other magical notes on the portable-not portable boom box upon my shoulder. Bigger than a breadbox, smaller than a car. I don’t know what happened to that jacket. I only hope that it found it’s way to another as deserving, or more deserving soul. youth plays invincible, and in order to slay dragons, you need the appropriate armor.

“Hot Urine”

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“Hot Urine”

Oh, the years in between,

then and now.

But, how?

Traveling from Boston to Miami.

From Miami to Key West.

At tradition’s behest.

Appropriately dressed.

A briefcase full of booze.

New Balance shoes.

A plush animal stolen from a Walpole Kegger.

Kennel beneath the plane, in cargo.

Chompah!

Midnight Rompah.

Chicanery ensued.

Krispy Kreme paper hats.

Suspicious fun.

Arrived before we left,

bereft of sobriety,

and

propriety.

Miami Airport Car Rental Center.

A Trojan Hearse.

 

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Full of dead youth,

not for lack of trying.

 A bachelorhood dying,

for spite and gripe,

and a nasty fuck of fiancée,

that later enlightened me.

Not all stories have a happy ending,

neither do massages.

Messages crossed,

and we’re off!

160 miles to where the birds land,

where the pelicans can,

Pelican Landing.

Key West grandstanding.

So demanding.

Three hours, and twenty-two minutes,

according to MapQuest.

 

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First stop, packy.

Pile in backy.

How does one decrease the ETA to a more palatable time?

No bathroom breaks.

Just groupthink,

and speed limit skill.

Don’t spill.

Six cases of beer.

Beer in, beer out.

Bucket brigade.

Don’t drink the Kool-Aid!

Hot Urine!

Pass the cuppy to the left one time,

shotgun launch.

Highway becomes whizzway.

Solo cups,

filled up,

passed up.

Returned empty.

How do you get to Carnegie Hall?

Practice.

How do you get to Key West?

Debauchery.

All that time saved,

ETA decreased.

What does one do with the excess?

Why, you spend it wisely of course,by stopping at the first Adult Store available.

Twenty-five cent peeps.

Screen down, screen up.

Jizz mopper at attention.

Not a mention,

of the tension,

released.

Novelty:

A bumpah stickah slapped on the back of the great white whale.

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Many horns accompanied us on our surge to Mordor.

Solos used, beers consumed.

When did we get there?

We got there before we arrived.

The lot imbibed.

Boston Pride.

Hot Urine ride.

All over the sides.

On the Hunt for Freeto Pies.

Not denied.

Returned the white whale to the rental deal,

it had more of a mustard sheen,

our pelican queen.

Bladder camaraderie.

Landing on a Key West Beach.

Chompah, unleashed.

Megaphones, and Hemingway homes.

Discocock.

Duval Block.

Papa Joe found his soul,

at Teasers.

Met Derek,

and his mullet.

Broke all the rules,

of the pool.

Within twelve minutes of arriving.

Got launched from Pelican Landing.

Cash withstanding.

Megaphones demanded.

Eat my ass!

Eat my ass!

Perhaps, in a different quarter the response would have been more acceptable.

Blue Marlin Motel.

 

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Mexican Wrestling Masks.

Sunburns.

Swingers.

Kid Rock routine boombox,

while Sarah Smiles played her bass in tune.

Naked hangs.

Stolen bikes.

“Wouldn’t fuck you for a nickel!”

Boy, did that incite.

 

Memory forgets.

 

Oh, the years in between,

then and now.

But, how?

Traveling from Boston to Miami.

From Miami to Key West.

Those guys were the best,

some are fiercely missed.

Traveling down the highway of life,

a fellowship of launched piss.

“Two Uncle Mikes Walk into a Bar…”

 

bachmr-dooleysThe year was 1995, and I turned 21 that year. It was an auspicious time, filled with many misadventures and many happy circumstances. I was blessed with a great deal of luck and privilege, and my guardian angel surely deserved an award for guiding me past any and all adversities that came my way.

On Thursday, March 16,  I crossed the threshold at 77 Broad Street, around 5pm, wearing my Tartan Scally Hat. I was to meet my Da there, for an after work birthday pint. To those not in the know 77 Broad Street, Boston, is one of the finest drinking establishments in town, Mr. Dooley’s Tavern. It is a place that is both small and large, and contains the kind of charm that a wide-eyed late teen/early twenty-something would covet from afar when starting to desire and plan to drink legally.

Somehow, the word got around to my Uncle Mikes (I have two Uncle Mikes, a paternal and a maternal ) that I was meeting my Da for a pint at Dooley’s. If there is a crossroads of time, or an alternate universe where I could re-experience this night again, I would do so. The magic of it is well remembered and cherished.

I sat and waited for my Da to come, and in walked my first Uncle Mike.

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He was also wearing a Scally Cap. He sat and we shared a drink. A moment later, my second Uncle Mike walked into Dooley’s.

100_0814  He was also wearing a Scally Cap.

Last but not least, in walked Da, and you guessed it, he was wearing his Scally Cap too.

The mood was convivial, and I felt as if I had been baptized, brought into the club, as if I was one of the guys. It felt great. It still feels great.

On this, the 23 anniversary of that event. I thank the universe for such a gift.

Although, Da has moved on to Broader Streets,

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I still have my Uncle Mikes, and when I lift a pint, I think back to that night, huddled in a booth,

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sipping pints, four huge Irish-American heads covered in Scally Caps, welcoming a young lad into the fold.

Slainte!

 

 

 

“Crayola Census”

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“Crayola Census”

 

When I smell colors, this is what I see.

The brown smells like wet cardboard and soggy Rice Krispies languishing in a stodgy bowl in a dirty sink full of dishes.

The black smells like licorice flavored liquor and settled smoke obscuring my vision on a deathly autumn night that seems to last forever.

When I smell colors, this is what I hear.

The white smells like vanilla candles burning special, on vanilla birthday frosted cakes, too, too sweet.

The red smells like angry acne and sweat from a sleepless summer nights of rejected sexual advances, festering in a marriage bed growing toward displeasure.

When I smell colors, this is what I taste.

The blue smells like the mystery of a shadowed ocean being overlooked by a winter’s dark starry night above.

The orange smells like corporate cubicles during rushed at-desk lunches, peels peeled of pride and dead inside, cleaning the clogged dreams with citrus solutions.

When I smell colors, this is what I feel.

The green smells like the verdant vegetative estates of spring sprawling out into the forever, ground up for health drinks consumption.

The purple smells like mountains majesty and spiced plums bruised by vascular varicose varieties.

When I smell colors, this is what I smell.

The peach smells like generalized skin tones of nude pantyhose on a Kmart shelf hanging suggestively from a plastic egg packaging.

The grey smells like the ashes of dead relatives left on counters at mortuaries and funeral parlors sealed with precision so all that is left materially cannot escape order.