Mmmmm. . . That Cooked Bacon Smell!

“Whatever colour you wore when you went into the shop, you
always came out in grey or bottle-green.”
Julian Barnes, Metroland

Gotcha!!

I was told the other day that I was spiritually clogged up. I was on a date catching up with an old friend who was visiting from out of town and we were having the best of time of our. . . She insisted that we have our palms read. I smirked like all cynics at the idea. Her persistence, if anything, was the reason why I went along with it.

We approached the fortune teller “stand”—it wasn’t a booth—and allowed commerce to take its natural course. A laminated 3×5 card which could’ve easily been a happy hour menu at the bar behind their operation was placed down in front of us. I didn’t like any of the prices. They started at $250 and decreased in very small increments: Trust fund-Beamer brat; Middle class to upper class well-wisher; Pretend middle class card swiper. . . blah, blah, blah; landing on the last: Obviously YOU need this money more than we do. I (we) chose the $20 – Obviously YOU need this money more than we do package. (Hell, I’m not going to put much value into what’s going to be told to me, I thought. And when I sit down to look over my finances for the month I most likely won’t sigh when I see – $20 bucks “fortune read” 8/20/2012 – as one of my purchases. Anyway my friend said I needed to loosen up and have more fun. When did having more fun require spending more money?—I’d never bitch like this in front of her.)

Come and get it…

My friend went first. Having spent the afternoon talking in detail about her trek through life, I was amazed at how close (It was a little pop-up over second base that landed right in front of the center fielder for a single to start of the inning, not a bomb cranked deep right into an auto insurance ad forcing the right fielder to put heels to butt so the defense doesn’t give up a triple) the fortune teller had gotten to a lot of what was going on in my friend’s life past & present and neither of us could stop laughing at how eerie all of it was.

Moving on. . .

Now me –

“Make a tight fist,” her first command. Her eyes the least bit understanding of how procedural all of it looked and how it added to my cynical view of the entire process. “Open them and relax.”

Yeah right!

(I’ve often wondered what I look like when I’m trying to impress someone, that someone being a girl. I see other guys doing it and I roll my eyes at them. [“Damn, you must think everything is so beneath me.”] I’m guessing I draw the same analysis. You’re not your real you when you’re trying to impress someone—correction: I’m not my real me when I’m trying to impress a girl. And I shouldn’t say impress because in my mind I don’t believe that’s what I’m trying to accomplish. There has to be a milder verb I’m not thinking about at the moment to more accurately describe what my agenda is on dates when I’m hanging out with “friends”. What I’m getting at is that my style—or way of courtship—is not to draw any attention to myself which would in turn make me do all of the things I’ve seen men do when they’re trying to impress a girl: be very excited about trivial shit, talk with my hands, mic check famous people I know or saw once, etc. . . Complain about all of the things wrong with my car, you know the routine. Knowing that I can comprehend, think rationally and speak in full sentences should be impressive enough. That and I don’t stare at a woman’s breasts, especially when the woman is looking directly at me. [“C’mon, I’m no Saint!”] I’ve always felt like these kinds of movements have hurt me more than they have helped me.)

Man this fortune teller began rambling and fumbling all over her words. All of the flickering of the eyelids that ceased the moment we gave her our money started back up again. She started talking with her hands, being overtly excited about trivial shit that happened in my life—she lost all of her swag. Over moi! You would’ve thought I had paid her to act that way. I got my $20 bucks worth but this was borderline excessive. I felt like we were on a date, a date that she wanted to end right—you know what I mean. Maybe she should’ve listened to her own command and relaxed.

It got beyond embarrassing. I could barely face my friend whose eyes grew with intrigue as the fortune teller unraveled what I had spent all afternoon keeping laced. There was nowhere to hide from all the attention. My friend kept squeezing my arm and hitting me as the fortune teller forged on giving us glimpses of what my life was potentially going to be like for me.

“You’ll be fine,” she ended, standing there proud and almost to the point of exhaustion with her conclusion.

My friend, she was like: is all of this shit true?

Yeah, I guess it is true give or take a few things, and not knowing my future of course, and really nothing I hadn’t heard before from drunkards and the one other time years ago I had my palm read (long story):
— Success means everything to you.

— You’re highly creative and torn between your love-life and career.

— Something from your past is troubling you.

— You’ll (I’ll) be fine.

I’ll be fine. That became the theme for the day after that. My friend playfully attacked me whenever she got the chance.

“I forgot everything that bitch said about me,” my friend said as we sat down for a nightcap, two glasses of champagne bubbling up in front of us. “But you, this bitch couldn’t stop talking. How long did she even talk to me for? Less than two minutes? She hands you her card because she wants to get your spirit unclogged—what the fuck! What did she say about me again?”

But I wasn’t moved by any of what she had said. Spending what amounts to two monthly cell phone bills to have my chakra? (I think this equates to spirit and what the lady wanted to tap into) “unclogged”—come on, really? She seemed way too enthused about it all. It just felt like she was gaming me. So let me get this straight: if I fork over more of my hard earned cash then I get to see what’s really holding me back from a life of luxury, something you say I’m “destined for”, something I can’t know any further having been spoon fed a sampling at the cost of $20 already unless we dig deeper? What am I: a sucker? Quite possibly in her eyes if I hadn’t held firm in declining her offer.

The whole ordeal got me to thinking about the past month or so. I’ve been tempted by the likes of lottery tickets, MLMs (multi-level marketing scams – look them up yourself), sorcery (the current), sure-fire stocks, the list goes on. It’s like Americans want the cheat code for everything. And none of this falls on my friend’s shoulders, she was just looking to have “fun”. This observation is of my own doing and has been a long time coming. I’m disgusted with what I’m seeing out there with all of the shortcuts whether it be health, money, love, success, etc. I’m sick of bad people dumping these intoxicating ideas onto the masses minds. I’m sick of being preyed upon and taken advantage of. These are interesting times right now: the economy is stale, those on the job hunt are walking into Costco-like lines at interviews, and those with jobs are walking on eggshells because they know how rough it is out there yet people still believe there’s a cheat code for a way out of this hell, mine being as simple as unclogging my spirit. It’s not that! Nor is it stocks, lottery tickets or MLMs.

I get it. It’s attractive enough. It looks good when it’s presented to you in a colorful, eye-popping PowerPoint package—it even smells like cooked bacon (not sure of a vegetarian/vegan equivalent), but these offers are designed for taking your loose change. That’s their niche. Your lose change equates to millions for them because you foolishly believe that you, you of all people are going to get a front of the line pass. You’re making it easy for them! – to sample a line from one of my favorite films: Michael Clayton. Life’s tough. I’m right there with you fighting the good fight, but now more than ever you have to be aware of the morally bankrupt who want to extract from you.

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Nuff said

Probably too deep for an entry, but seeing as there has been a nice chunk of time since my last post went up, maybe it’s a good idea to let loose a little; I’m sure my friend might like it if I loosen up. 🙂

Phrases like “you-I-we-she-he-they’ll be fine” plant the wrong kind of seeds. Although it’s “fun” to get caught up in the moment.

Heat up the frying pan!

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