Month: December 2011

The Atheist

Hello, my name is Erin and I am an atheist.

I live in the atheist part of town. I drive an atheist car. I speak with an atheist accent. I wear atheist clothes.

Being an atheist wasn’t a decision I made; I was born this way, and if you can’t accept that, well, I feel sorry for you. I know who I am…most of the time. There was that incident a few months ago where I got pretty intoxicated and thought I was Chuck Norris and started roundhouse kicking people in the head, but other than that, I am aware of who and what I am.

I was raised Christian and attended church, Sunday school and spent my kindergarten through eighth grade years in a parochial school. I was taught the Word of the Lord five days a week for nine years.

I remember my first time doubting that what I was being taught wasn’t what I wanted to learn. It was in the fifth grade and in our daily religion class, we were posed this question:

“If someone where to come into the classroom and ask you if you believed in God or be shot, how would you answer?”

I was eleven years old and had the realization that being shot over one’s religious beliefs was insane. I, of course, answered “confirm my belief in God,” but who the hell wouldn’t answer that, especially an impressionable fifth grader? At that point on, I began to doubt, but because I was child and didn’t yet realize I could have my own thoughts and opinions, I continued doing what I was told. Church was an absolute bore; spending an hour and a half in uncomfortable church clothes, listening to the elderly pastor drone on and on about scripture. I would count all the old women in the congregation who had short, curly, white hair. There were a lot. I would draw on the bulletin and when I got old enough to carry a purse, I would stuff it full of things to entertain myself. My only reprieve came in the fifteen minutes between the end of the service to the beginning of Sunday school.

When I started high school, my parents became more lenient on attending church, simply for the fact I began to have a social life and fighting with a teenager to get up early on a Sunday was a fruitless attempt they soon grew weary of and they would just let me sleep in. Oh, glorious day when that happened!

I stopped attending church after I moved out of the house and lived on my own. Fuck that crap! I was free! I would get dragged to church on the prerequisite holidays like Easter and Christmas. I remember how awkward that was to hear members of the church come up to me and make off-handed comments about my lack of attendance, and could see their eyes judging me.

When I got married and moved away, the church would still send me the monthly newsletter. I finally got tired of them and the paper they were wasting on me and wrote a letter to the board members asking to be released from the church. They wrote back, of course, and urged me to “find another church family in your town.” Yeah…okay.  I’ll get on that.

During this time, I didn’t consider myself an atheist, though. I was just a “lost child of God” as one of the board members so eloquently put it. I wish I had kept that letter, because as I recall, it was eye-roll inducing.

I didn’t start thinking of myself as an atheist until I met my then-husband and his family. Similar to me, he had been raised Catholic (the poor darling) and as I did, drifted away. His older sister was the only confirmed atheist of the family, with my ex-husband and his little sister slowly edging towards atheism, and their mother tagging along behind them.

I became enlighted whenever I heard my sister-in-law talk about the scientific aspect of the earth. As a child, I was taught straight out of Genesis: on the first day, God created Heaven and Earth and it was good, so on and so forth until he had made land, sea, fish and mammals, plants and trees, the moon and stars, and then finally, his greatest creation–Adam. In his own image, no less! Made from the dirt that God himself just whipped together in his cosmic Easy Bake Oven. God saw Adam was a lonely guy, so he stole a rib from him and made him a mate. The Barbie to Adam’s Ken, if you will.

The Earth, according to Christians is only a few thousand years old, not the millions of years old that we wacky atheists believe. There were no dinosaurs, and don’t even think about bringing up the Big Bang Theory. Just don’t. There’s no way the earth just…happened. No way. Evolution is a theory for madmen and those that believe in it should be stoned to death for their blasphemy.

I became more aware scientifically that you know, the Earth probably isn’t as young as Christians claim. And what about the dinosaurs? And I fully believe in the evolutionary process. I’ve seen it in action. Scientists have done a hell of a job proving religion is…well, wrong.

That was my first poke in the atheist direction. The second came when things in my life took a headfirst dive into shit fan. Everything was changing, and not for the better. Tragedy seemed everywhere…that’s when I began to examine this whole religion thing even more closely. How could a God that claimed to love us unconditionally and wants us to be happy and treat others the way we want to be treated, to not commit adultery, murder, theft, covet our neighbor or his belongings, etc let so many wicked, vile, disgusting things happen to us? There’s war, drought, starving people, crime galore! What the fuck, God? The 1980’s musical group “XTC” perfectly sums up my thoughts on God in their song “Dear God.” Here are the lyrics:

“Dear god, hope you get the letter and…
I pray you can make it better down here
I don’t mean a big reduction in the price of beer
But all the people that you made in your image
See them starving in the street
‘Cause they don’t get enough to eat from god
I can’t believe in you

Dear god, sorry to disturb you but…
I feel that I should be heard loud and clear
We all need a big reduction in amount of tears
And all the people that you made in your image
See them fighting in the street
‘Cause they can’t make opinions meet about god
I can’t believe in you

Did you make disease and the diamond blue?
Did you make mankind after we made you?
And the devil too!

Dear god don’t know if you noticed but…
Your name is on a lot of quotes in this book
And us crazy humans wrote it, you should take a look
And all the people that you made in your image
still believing that junk is true
Well I know it ain’t, and so do you
Dear god
I can’t believe in
I don’t believe

I won’t believe in heaven or hell
No saints, no sinners, no devil as well
No pearly gates, no thorny crown
You’re always letting us humans down
The wars you bring, the babes you drown
Those lost at sea and never found
And it’s the same the whole world ’round
The hurt I see helps to compound
That father, son and holy ghost
Is just somebody’s unholy hoax
And if you’re up there you’ll perceive
That my heart’s here upon my sleeve
If there’s one thing I don’t believe in

It’s you
Dear god”

My thoughts exactly. Yes, the religious among you might be saying, “Erin, you’re just angry at God.” Yes. I am. He is supposed to be this benevolent being, but in fact, he demonstrates utter malevolence and I simply cannot believe in anything that promotes that. The Bible is full of “love thy neighbor” mumbo jumbo yet God willingly inflicts all these terrible things upon his people. “God never gives us more than we can handle; everything happens for a reason.” No, God doesn’t give us more than we can handle because there is no God, so be quiet, Junior. You’re right–everything does happen for a reason. I cut my hand on a knife, I’m going to bleed. Cause and effect. We learned this concept in grade school. Very good recollection skills.

The third strike for religion in my book comes from the bigotry displayed by every religion. I’m not singling out one specific group because all are guilty of it. Christians shun Buddhists because they don’t believe in God, but a different deity. Everyone hates the Jews. Catholics think their papal shit doesn’t stink, all while molesting children. No one religion is wrong, but all of them are in the same breath.

And it’s not just the religious pissing match that I detest. It’s religion itself. I’m supposed to give tithings to the church: 1/10th of my income, to be exact. All of this goes directly to God. Can I get a receipt for that, please? I want to make sure God got it and is going to use it for something worthy, and not blow it on a poker match between him, Peter, Paul and Elvis. No hookers and blow either, God. Remember what happened last time? Yeah.

I recall with disgust when a church here in town expanded. It was a fairly large church to begin with, but we’re talking a metroplex of a church now. It looms large in the horizon and I wonder if these Christians recall the story from Genesis, chapter 11: The Tower of Babel. “Hey guys, let’s build this sweet tower thing! It’s going to be awesome sauce!” “Hi, I’m God and I don’t like this shit, so KABLEWIE!! I’M GOD, BITCHES!” Now, I know that’s not exactly verbatim, but it’s pretty damn close. Lost in translation, if you will, because that’s how the bible rolls. It’s a giant documentation of the game of telephone. “No, you idiots! I said I wanted to listen to ‘Tears For Fears,’ not ‘wander the desert for forty years’!”

My point is this: the church uses the hard-earned money of its congregation to fund projects like these. It’s a contradiction in terms! We’re going to use this money and make the biggest, most bestest church EVAH and God will love us forevers! No, you ding dongs. God gets pissed off when you do shit like this.

So, tithing is bullcrap. This breaches a whole “We are the 99%” topic I don’t want to discuss, but I’ll do it briefly for the sake of making a point: most church-goers are middle to lower class citizens who realistically cannot afford to part with 1/10 of their annual income. There are mouths to feed, bills to pay, etc. “But God will provide.” Okay, fine. You give God $3000 and watch as he returns the favor by what’s this? He didn’t provide for you after all? Really? Well, slap my ass and call me a biscuit. That’s shocking, really. I can’t believe God did that to you. Bad God! No cookie for God. That was a naughty God. Again, not the most useful analogy, but I hope you get the picture.

We’ve got bigotry, frivolous spending, what else? Oh, yes…

Let’s now discuss the atheist versus theists argument.

I, by nature, hate confrontation. I loathe it. It makes me uncomfortable and want to crawl inside a hole until the whole thing blows over. I just want people to get along. A simple dream, but I am also a realist and know that this is never going to happen. The old adage “agree to disagree” seems lost in this ongoing debate between those that believe and those that don’t. I am of the thought that while I don’t share your beliefs, I’m not going to call you an idiot or stupid or uneducated for your thoughts. I will urge you to look at both sides of the equation instead of your own single-minded processes. I know people who poke theists with their atheist sticks and that just annoys and frustrates me, but it goes both ways. There are theists out there that mock and ridicule us atheists for our lack of believing in their god.

As Penn and Teller say, “and then there’s this asshole…”

Ladies and gentlemen, I know him only as @GodsWordIsLaw on Twitter, and he embodies everything of what I dislike about religion. I should have known this guy was going to hash my browns when I saw his profile picture: it’s the gay flag with the international symbol for “no” or “do not.” The first time I saw it, my blood instantly began to boil.


As you can see, he’s a real nice guy and I hope we can be friends. And by “friends,” I mean I want to kick him in the head with a pair of steel-toed boots made out of nails and porcupine quills. This is the kind of crap that I cannot tolerate. I especially love the top tweet. From what I gather, this chucklefuck believes he can speak with God and we’re in for another rapture on New Years Eve. When asked about what Gee Oh Dee said to him, the second from the bottom tweet cracks me up: “God spoke to the faithful tonight and gave us details. I am not at liberty to divulge.” Uh…okay? You’re going to withhold pertinent information from your fellow godoholics? Did God swear you to secrecy? Make you pinkie swear? Cross your heart and hope to die or stick a needle in your eye? I can’t help but laugh at people like this. The psychology community has a word for them, as well: paranoid schizophrenia. Hearing voices? Delusions of grandeur? Thoughts that everyone is out to get them? Interesting indeed.

But wait! There’s more! Meet the guy that probably wants to do things to my buddy Keith here that would make the residents of Sodom and Gomorrah blush. Friends, may I introduce to you @LoveGod50:


Oh yeah. Patrick wants to fondle Keith’s balls alright. Fondle them good.

I know, I know…I’m doing it myself. Being hateful, not fondling Keith’s nuts, I mean. But it’s people like these two that make it so freaking easy to do! I mean, COME ON. I find it ironic though, and I’ll tell you why: these two fine gentlemen claim to be bathing in God’s love and are the ultimate Christian soldiers of the Lord. If these two dorks are such God-fearing Christians and claim to follow the Bible to the t, they should not be so hateful towards us lowly atheists. Here me out–instead of firing back with bullshit like Keith has when someone challenges his beliefs, he should practice what he preaches: forgiveness. My absolute favorite retort when I do get into a religious debate  is “forgive me.” Your God says to forgive people like us, so…do it. Don’t hate the player, hate the game, baby.

Religion, man…religion. I really could go on and on about this, but I’m going to end up repeating myself and getting angry and then I’ll start emotional eating and I’ve already eaten like, two cookies and some beef jerky and a thing of Triscuits tonight, so I’ll stop before my waistline expands any further.

I hope I’ve maybe shed some light on this for you, at least my own personal reason for being an atheist. Don’t you dare pity me or offer me prayers because that is insulting to me and an empty gesture. “I’ll pray for you” translates to “I don’t understand what you’re going through and can’t help you so I’ll just pray for you instead.”

I am an atheist. I can’t believe something like this is even an issue between people, but if we are still hung up on skin color and you not speaking English as your first language, I’m afraid it always will be one, and if that isn’t heartbreaking, I don’t know what is. Your god says to practice tolerance and love, yet you are the least willing to prove that, and this is why I feel sorry for you. Have a nice life because if you can’t accept me for who I am, I don’t want you in mine.

Peace,

Erin

The Swindler

John Davies paces nervously around an empty parking lot. The halogen street lights cast a soft orange glow on the pavement and his shadow appears drawn out before him.

He reaches into his leather coat pocket and pulls out a pack of smokes and his Zippo. He flips the top of the lighter, the flame devouring the end of the cigarette in fire. He inhales deeply and harshly blows a stream of grey smoke between his pursed lips.

“Jesus Christ…” he mutters under his breath and takes another drag.

He was told to be at this specific location at 9:00 p.m. on the dot. The phone call from the unknown man was very adamant about this. Not a minute too soon or too late: 9:00 p.m. or the deal is off. John takes his cell phone out of his front pants pocket and looks at the time–9:14 p.m. He’s been walking this parking lot for nearly fifteen minutes. Why did he have to be on time and this guy late? The nerve of some people…

John huffs furiously on his smoke, burning it halfway down with one drag. He started doubting his decision to be here. This was stupid, and not to mention probably very illegal, but the offer was too good to pass up, so that’s why he stood impatiently waiting in an empty parking lot.

John then reached into his coat again and patted a thick manilla envelope that was pressed against his chest. Five thousand dollars was in there; a huge amount of money to John and he couldn’t believe he was parting with it so easily, but it was going to be worth it.

At twenty after nine, John saw headlights at the entrance to the lot and he tensed up. A black sedan slowly turned in and approached John and stopped a few feet in front of him. The drivers side window went down and inside sat a tiny man with fiery orange hair and a cigar jammed into the corner of his mouth which he was gnawing on like a stick of beef jerky. So this was Jimmy “The Fart” Consella, huh? John expected a much more menacing-looking man, not this Keebler Elf.

“You Davies?” Jimmy growled in a deep voice. He didn’t look at John, but stared straight ahead, his face illuminated by the pale blue glow of his dashboard lights.

“Yeah,” John had to stifle a laugh and covered it by coughing.

“You got the money, Davies?”

John patted the front of his coat in response.

Jimmy leaned over to the passenger side and grabbed a brown paper bag and shoved it out the window at John. He reached into his jacket and grabbed the envelope, hesitating a second and then placed it in Jimmy’s outstretched hand.

“It’s all there,” John said. Jimmy snorted and put the envelope under the visor, not bothering to count it.

“Pleasure doing business with you, Davies,” Jimmy said as he started to roll up the window.

“Hey, Jimmy? Why do they call you ‘The Fart’?’ asked John. The window stopped and Jimmy turned to look at John, only his eyes and top of his head visible through the crack.

“Because I shouldn’t be trusted, Davies,” he croaked. He rolled up the window and sped out of the parking lot, the tires of the sedan squealing in protest as Jimmy rounded the corner.

John stood frozen in the same spot, all of a sudden very afraid to look in the bag. He reluctantly opened it and peered inside. His heart stopped in his chest and he could feel all the blood draining from his face and his knees started shaking. He dropped the bag on the ground and as it landed on its side, the contents spilled out.

John just paid five large ones for a half-eaten turkey sandwich and an apple core.

Jimmy was right: never trust a fart.

The Accident

“Shit” the man muttered.

He was desperately trying to wash the blood off his hands by pouring water from a plastic bottle he had laying in the seat next to him. Most came off in streams of pink and splashed on his boots, staining the light brown leather. There was still blood under his fingernails and around his cuticles, but he didn’t have time to be thorough; he had  places to be tonight.

He looked behind him at the huddled mass haphazardly strewn across the back seat. He hadn’t seen him coming until it was too late and he hit the homeless man. He panicked–he couldn’t leave the man to die in the streets, although from the looks of him, he was doing a pretty good job of doing that himself.

 His face was gaunt and sickly ashen; his blonde hair matted and had bits of dried leaves stuck in it. The collar of his corduroy jacket soaked with blood as was the Yale University sweatshirt he had on underneath. The man shook his head at the irony of the man’s shirt. He glanced down at the dead man’s feet and saw ratted old sneakers being held together with duct tape and willpower.

The text alert tone on his phone shook him from his thoughts.

“Where are you?” the message asked. It was from his wife.

He picked up his phone and quickly typed his location: “Philadelphia” and hit send.

He stared down at his phone, waiting for a response. She was not going to be happy about this. He should be hundreds of miles away from here by now, but hitting and ultimately killing a man tends to put a kink in your travel plans.

His phone beeped at him and he picked it up.

“What?! You better have a good explanation for why you’re so far behind schedule. We are on a very tight time frame. People are depending on you. I swear, if you’re at a strip club again…”

The man chuckled in spite of the current situation.

“No, I’m not at the club. I learned my lesson last time. I had an accident and running behind. Will be back on the road shortly,” he typed.

“WHAT KIND OF ACCIDENT?”

Goddamn it, he cursed.

“Hit a homeless man. He’s in the back seat. I couldn’t leave him, so took him with. We’ll deal with him when I get home. I’m leaving now.”

“Good. Don’t mess this up, Nick. Get those packages delivered,” his phone beeped again.

Nick tossed the phone in seat. She was right–he couldn’t fuck this up.

He started up the engine and hit the gas. The force of the acceleration caused the dead man in the back to fall to the floor and the other packages in the back on top of him.

Santa sighed.

This is going to be a long Christmas.

 

 

 

December 20, 2011

What a day, what a day, what a day.

Today was the funeral of my grandmother-in-law, Leona. This sounds bizarre, but it was a wonderful funeral. That seems like a contradiction in terms, but honestly, I hope I have a funeral like hers. It was obviously heartbreaking and very sad to finally come to terms with the fact she is gone from our physical lives, but during the service, several people stood up and shared memories they had of Leona and it never ceases to amaze me the scope of emotions us humans can go through in a matter of seconds.

I was crying and laughing at the same time. If that doesn’t make you feel mentally unstable, I don’t know what does, but it was such a relief to be able to laugh. Funerals, to me, are always so grim and dismal, but Leona’s gave us a chance to truly celebrate her life, and my goodness, what a life she led. I always enjoyed hearing the grandkids share stories of growing up, but to hear members of the community and other extended family members tell their tales was incredible. That’s how funerals should be and I’m grateful I got to be a part of hers.

As you know, I was also slightly nervous about attending due to some of the family not knowing the situation between Jason and I, and while there were a few “Hi Erin, how are you and Jason doing?” moments, I handled them with grace and poise and successfully managed to divert the conversation to avoid further awkwardness. So yay.

It was also the first time I’ve seen Jason in over four months. Honestly, it was good to see him. That little shit has gotten so skinny…my god. He looked well, though; not sickly thin, which I was scared of. He even sat next to me in church and I was glad he did so. I hope I was able to offer him some comfort; he was obviously emotional and without hesitation, I put my arm around him and he leaned in and rested his head on my shoulder for part of the service.

After the service, my sisters/brothers-in-law all went to my mother-in-law’s house and we sat around to unwind. It was like old times again and that was kind of emotional for me; Sandy, my mother-in-law, has always said that I will be part of her family and for that, I’m eternally thankful. After a few hours there, the nieces and nephew were starting to tear the house apart, so their parents decided a trip to an indoor playground was in order, so we all convened for the day. To my surprise, Jason asked if he could ride back with me, which I accepted.

The ride wasn’t as awkward as I thought it would be; he always felt comfortable talking in the car, for some reason, and we were able to have a short but needed conversation about his current situation. He accepted his family’s pleas for seeking counseling and treatment and is on a waiting list to begin outpatient therapy, and hopefully that begins within the next week or so. He said he’s ready for the help, and that brought tears to my eyes. For him to admit that, not only to me, but to himself is epic, people. Epic. I only wish him the best and hope he can commit to the treatment and finally be the man I know he’s been capable of being for years. But you know, I’ve also been in a similar situation in my life; you see you need to make a change and are aware of it, but YOU have to be ready to make it and willing to accept the fact that yes, things are getting out of my control and it’s time to do something about it. Don’t let things pile up until they drown you, and I seriously am kind of dumbfounded he’s come to that realization.

I did give him a stern look and too tight of a hug when I dropped him off, though–I asked him to not go months without contact again because he knows I care about him and want to help him in any way I can, and if he pulls that shit with me again, we’re going to have words. I got a sheepish look and he said he’d be better. I had best stick to those words; he may be bigger/stronger than me, but he’s seen me livid pissed off angry before and I don’t think he cares to witness that again.

So. That’s been my day. I’m glad it’s mostly over, but am pleased with how it went, aside from the funeral thing. Now I’m off to find Christmas gifts for two girls and I have no idea what the hell a ZhuZhu pet is or if it’s even legal to own in the United States, but that’s what one of my nieces wants, so I guess.

Wish me luck.

Best regards,

E

Dead Tired

The clock on my desk reads 12:56 p.m. I sigh heavily and move my computer mouse to take the screen saver off the screen. My eyelids droop and pop open as I wake myself up. I would punch a nun in the head to be able to take a nap now…

Another heavy sigh and I look at the clock again. 12:57 p.m. Four more hours left of my shift at work. I sit staring at the screen, my eyes not quite focusing and then darkness as my lids close again, this time rocketed back awake by the phone ringing.

“This is ridiculous,” I mutter to myself.

I get up from my desk and walk out of the office and down the corridor. Maybe a few laps around the hallways will wake me up. I pass the patient rooms and see people sitting in there, waiting for their doctor to see them. I make eye contact with an elderly gentleman and offer him a polite smile. He nods in return and picks up an outdated copy of some magazine laying on the bed tray next to him.

I continue walking and see an empty room, save the lone gurney in the corner. I stop and stare at it; it looks so inviting and comfortable. There’s a pillow and blanket folded up on the end. I turn my head in both directions to see if anyone is coming. I’m alone and walk into the room, shut the door behind me and walk over to the bed. I climb on top, fluff the pillow and spread the blanket over myself and drift off to sleep.

***

Carl Davis walks down the cement stairs to the basement level of the hospital and he fumbles for his keys as he approaches the door.   He jams the key into the hole, and the key-heavy ring jangles. He pushes the door open a little too forcefully and it bangs against the wall. He strides over to the desk in the corner and throws the keys down. He sits down in the green plastic chair and logs in to the computer, his long, thin fingers tapping loudly on the keyboard. He sits there a few minutes, checking his email and wishes he could look up porn on these computers. A man gets awful lonely down here.

Carl gets up from the desk and walks around the room. The fluorescent lights are too bright as they shine off the grey stainless steel cabinets in the room, and he squints his eyes at the glare.

“Hello, everyone. Nice to see you again,” he says to the people in the room, but they don’t respond.

Carl walks slowly around the room. He approaches a woman he has a crush on. Her name is Kate and she is beautiful. Long, wavy brown hair; soft white skin that Carl imagines stroking with is rough hands and he relishes the thought of how smooth she would feel under his finger tips. He doesn’t know what color her eyes were because she’s never looked at him, but if she did, Carl likes to think they would be the purest blue he’s ever seen. Yes, Kate is beautiful, indeed. He walks over to her and brazenly rests his hand on hers.

“Hello, darling…”

He pulls the white sheet away from her face and stares at her peaceful face. It looks like she’s sleeping, he thinks as he reaches forward to touch her pale blue-grey lips. Devious thoughts race through Carl’s mind. He pictures himself on top of her,  holding her by the thighs as he has his way with her. I bet if she were alive she’d like that, he says to himself.

Carl can’t control himself and pulls the white sheet off the dead woman and climbs up on the gurney. He unfastened his belt buckle and the fly of his work pants, reaches inside and puts himself inside the woman. He moans with sick pleasure at the feel of her. She hasn’t been dead that long, so she’s still warm on the inside. He places both hands by her head and brings himself in and out of the dead woman. He takes his time, though; he wants to enjoy her as long as he can.

***

I am awoken by a noise in the room, kind of a soft grunting sound. Crap, I think…I’ve been found out. Someone must have gone looking for me when I didn’t come back and now I”m caught laying here on this hospital bed taking a nap when I should be working. I open my eyes and I’m blinded by fluorescent lights and stainless steel. Where in the hell am I? This isn’t where I fell asleep. I’m suddenly hit by a chill in the room. Why is it so cold in here? It wasn’t this cold in here before… Then, it hits me: the morgue. Holy shit, I’m in the morgue.

Panic washes over me. How did I get down here? I must have been more tired than I thought if I was mistaken for a dead body waiting to be taken down into the basement to the morgue.

I throw the blanket off myself and get up off the table. I can still hear the odd sound coming from around the corner of the room and as I turn the corner, I see a tall man on top of one of the bodies, his bare ass sticking up into the air and he’s…oh, dear Jesus, he’s having sex with a corpse. I stop in my tracks and my rubber soled shoes squeak against the linoleum floor. I gasp and quickly bring my hands up to my mouth to keep any more noises from escaping.

The man stops and snaps his head in my direction. His brown eyes locking on to mine. I’m still frozen in place and drop my hands to offer a meager apology.

“I’m…I’m…I’m sorry…I’ll uh, just be letting myself out…” I manage.

The man leaps off the table, tucking himself back into this khaki work pants and he hurriedly zips them up and he fumbles with his belt. He is coming at me in huge strides and I try to duck out of his way, but being in the cold morgue has made my muscles slow to respond and he grabs me around my neck. His hands feel like hot vice grips on my cold skin and he tightens them around my neck. I started to scream, but he pushed his thumbs against my trachea and any sound is cut off in a rasping gasp.

He quickly overpowers me, due to sheer size and strength and lack of oxygen and I slump to the ground as I lose consciousness.

***

Carl Davis is in deep shit.  Not only did he get caught fucking a dead woman, but he’s pretty sure he killed the woman who caught him. After he choked her and she passed out, he snapped her neck. He checked for vital signs, but he couldn’t feel her pulse and she definitely wasn’t breathing.

He went back over to Kate and reluctantly covered her back up, but not before running his hands over her one more time, lingering over her. He pulled the sheet back to her face and wheeled her gurney into one of the storage lockers. Now for the woman on the floor. He dragged her over to the gurney she had been on and struggled to get her back on top. He finally managed, but it was a huge task and it left him sweaty and breathless. He had just finished rolling her into one of the lockers when he felt a hand clasp down on his shoulder.

Carl let out a yelp and whipped around to see his co-worker, Mike.

“Jesus fucking Christ, Mike! You scared me to death!” he yelled.

“Ha! Well, this is as good of a place as any, Carl,” Mike laughed. “Hey man, are you okay? You don’t look so good? Are you feeling alright?”

Carl saw this as his golden opportunity.

“No, actually. I think I’m coming down with something. Mind if I go home and get some rest? Maybe I have that flu bug that’s been going around. ” He faked a cough for good measure.

“Yeah, sure, man. Go home and get some rest. I think I can handle these stiffs.”

Carl walked back to the desk in the corner, grabbed his keys and walked out of the hospital, and was never seen again.

The Anger Post

Anger is a very natural emotion. The dictionary defines anger as such: a strong feeling of displeasure and belligerence aroused by a wrong. In general, I don’t get angry that often. Sure, some things piss me off, but for the most part, I take a moment or twenty and think about the situation and after a few minutes, I’m not so upset anymore.

However.

Don’t deny my anger. Let me be livid if I am. And there are some situations in life that call for you to be downright red-hot furious. I have encountered five such situations in my thirty years of life.

1. I was a sophomore in high school. I went through a huge body change from the time I was thirteen to about age fifteen. I gained close to eighty pounds over those two years. I’ve tried to pinpoint what caused this huge flux, but namely, I’d say just puberty and all the stress being a teenager can bring. Plus, I had a really awful short haircut which I decided to perm, so I that really didn’t help matters much. I remember this day clearly and probably will even when I’m eighty and riddled with dementia. I was at my locker getting books for my next class and to my right was the locker of a kid that I’ve never really gotten along with well. He was the stereotypical high school jock and to be honest, a bit of a prick. I was getting my books out and accidentally dropped one. As I bent over to pick it up, one of his equally prick-y friends came by. He started laughing and called me a cow. Oh, ho ho! Looking back now, having the slightly thicker skin and a much greater arsenal of sarcasm and snarky retorts, I can think of at least nine different things I’d say to that asshat now, but back then, it crushed me. I felt my cheeks flush with embarrassment,  shame and anger. It was the first time anyone had ever ridiculed me for my weight and I can honestly say, that one remark has left me scarred for life. That one word set the scene for a lifetime of low self esteem and poor self image issues. I stood there and took it. I let him call me a cow.

2. I was nineteen. I had been living with my aunt and uncle in a different city while I was attending a private college there, and due to a series of wacky events, the college announced before Christmas break that due to lack of enrollment, they were closing and we would not return to finish. Having no school to go to and no job, I reluctantly moved back home. Apparently while I was gone, things between my parents quickly started to diminish and I returned to resentment and a dissolving marriage. It was late July, I think. I was awoken one morning to the sound of my parents screaming in the living room, namely my dad yelling at me to “wake up, Erin! Your mother has ruined our marriage!” I remember lying in bed trying to convince myself this was all a really fucked up dream. I hesitantly got out of bed and opened my bedroom door. I saw my father pacing the living room like a crazy man and my mom sitting on the couch, slumped over on her knees. She looked up at me and she had mascara smeared down her face from crying. My dad stormed out of the house and went to work, my mom retreated to their bedroom. I’ll spare you the more unsavory details, but this is the day I watched my mother attempt suicide by taking an entire bottle of her blood pressure medication. She was standing outside by her car, crying hysterically and she threw back the pills and I just stood there, frozen in terror as I saw the pills go down her throat. She got into her car and drove away. My dad returned from work a few minutes later and I was freaking out. I tried to tell him what happened between my uncontrollable sobbing and managed to get it out. His reaction? “Good. I hope she dies.” Those words coming from my dad’s mouth…I couldn’t believe it. I looked him in the eyes and screamed, “I FUCKING HATE YOU.”

3. It was a week before Jason and I were to be married. Despite my mom’s attempted suicide two years earlier, she survived and my parents reconciled. All was well and good…or so we thought. Just as Mom had done two years before and cheated on my Dad, my Dad then began cheating on my mom. I was coming home from work late one night and met my mom on the highway. She flagged me to pull over and told me, “your father has something to say to you when you get home,” and she sped off back to work. I walked into the house and saw my dad sitting in the living room recliner. He then told me about his affair. This time, I had no words for him, but the hatred I had for him was intense and lasted for nearly two years. I refused contact with him and when forced to interact with him, it was brief and curt. Only after a talk with my older brother telling me I was being an immature brat did I slowly come to terms with what happened and let my dad back into my life.

4. November 9, 2009. The day my husband of six going on seven years refused to talk to me. He had been cut back hours at his job to part-time and we were barely scraping by financially the way it was, so to have his salary reduced was putting a heavy strain on us. We had never been the best conversationalists; it was as difficult for me to initiate conversation with him as it was for him to want to talk with me, but this needed to happen. I asked him what his plans were: either find a new job, get another part-time job, or he had been talking about going to school for a graphic design degree, so what about keeping the part-time job and going to school part-time? Well, this was not what he wanted to hear. He completely shut down on me and shut himself in our bedroom for an entire 24 hours, only coming out to go to the bathroom. This was the day I decided I didn’t want to be married to him anymore.

5. The day Arrested Development got cancelled.

Okay, that last one is a goof, but I was getting pretty serious here and I can’t handle being serious for very long or a baby seal gets clubbed somewhere.

Today got me plenty angry, but I’d rank it in the top 20. I try to be a good person. I try to do what is right, I brush my teeth every day and I assist elderly people when they need help. I tell my parents I love them regularly. I let my dog sleep on my bed. In general: good person. However, I make mistakes. As I’ve mentioned above, I’ve become angry enough to say mean, hurtful things to people. I am not proud of this and in all instances, I regret these things. I’m far from perfect, as my mother can well attest. I’ve said horrible things about Jason and his friends. I was pissed. However, this does not entitle me to run my mouth off about him or the company he keeps. Looking at my first instance of being truly angry, I can appreciate the irony. Someone’s one remark forever changed my perception of myself.

This may be an instance of too little, too late, but know that I am truly sorry for saying these things. I hope I can someday be forgiven as I’ve done with all the people who’ve made me angry in the past. Anger is a normal human emotion, but forgiveness is also imperative as a human. Don’t dwell on wrongdoings or you’re going to end up living a lonely life and die wondering why you’ve never accomplished much.

Oy. Alright. I didn’t really want my first attempt at writing in over month to be a post like this, but whatever works, I guess.

Good night.