Bug Nuts

Today marks the first [and very overdue] public eulogy for Bug Nuts Bogdanovich, our champion in countless conspiracies to take over the world at large.

His first name was actually Larry (Lawrence Milton), but nobody bothered to call him that once he’d begun his studies in undergrad. You see, he was constantly running around from place to place, appearing to be perpetually late for an appointment, while in reality he was always early. His main concern was to make sure that he didn’t get distracted along the way.

It’s a sad sight when a person who’s perpetually early is always rushing around in addition to that particular quirk. They can’t stop to smell the roses or anything. They’re just frenetic, losing small pieces of their humanity along the way, as achievement after achievement just whizzes by, a parade of accolades that really mean nothing in the grand scheme of things. I see it as his way of compensating for validations that he may not have received earlier in life. Or perhaps he’d gotten too much recognition and it developed a pattern of addictive behavior to continue seeking that high.

Who knows… he never let anyone into his inner life [enough] to see what really made him tick, so it’s all conjecture now. What his cohorts and loved ones do know is just how much work he took on all the time. People were naturally drawn to him, even though he kept everyone at arm’s length. That’s precisely what gave him an alluring aura. “If only he would take the time to get to know us better, maybe we could see what kind of a person he truly is! As it stands, he could be a really nice guy, a serial killer, both, neither… frustrating.”

The moniker “Bug Nuts” stemmed from the one time he actually let his hair down (metaphorically–he would never allow himself to get bogged down in matters of extreme grooming, it would be such a waste of time in his eyes). He went to his dearest friend Beatrice’s little birthday gathering for a couple hours, actually imbibing spirits and taking down his defenses for once. If there had been more people gathered there at that time, he more than likely would have withdrawn into his introvert’s shell and waited it out while occasionally making pained eye contact with Bea.

But since he did feel comfortable enough to be more of himself around these people (he got a “Goldilocks Zone” vibe off of them), he found himself embroiled in an entertaining conversation about insects. He fancied himself an amateur entomologist (among his other passions), and he was really getting fired up about dung beetles of all species. Bea, having witnessed several minutes of unbroken bug talk, exclaimed “hey wow, look at Bug Nuts Bogdanovich over here!”, and the rest is history.

I don’t claim to have known this man very well at all, but from the few fleeting moments we spent with one another, I felt it was my duty and privilege to give him a respectable send-off into the great blue yonder with a laugh or two.

So here’s to you, Mr. Bogdanovich. Beetles love you more than you will know. Whoa whoa whoa.

Wooden Spoons

Double up the foundation dust,
trouble finding lurky lust while wincing
under beveled falls; egregious
concertina riffs agree with Wes
(our father’s postman): the passion
never does leave the feet.

Snowcapped griffins found asylums
rich in iron, poor in aprons.
Mythology holds no place
in institutions of higher psychology.

Where reprimands come for assurance,
our collective mothers grease their wooden spoons.
We may only marvel as to which grease traps
were harvested for such a folksy purpose.

You insist that I have a soul for dingers,
I retort that your trout lost its diaper yesterday.
You ask what that means, and while
seething in your stupor, I quip
“which radishes peak first?
Why, only the early growers, son.”

——

First draft posted on 6/11/11,
originally entitled #10

DFM

Enter our eternal and infernal friend,
Deflatermouse–
careful about the point he makes when scrimmying across the kitchen floor in a fairly affluent suburban subdivision that would otherwise say it’s been treated well by the rodents and mongrels of the world. Only DFM (as the folks in the know have referred to him) gets a pass–you know, for sheer name novelty that has nothing to do with his aptitude for deflating himself (or others) and everything to do with occupying the (then) hovel of Fretful Fred, a beleaguered baritone at the peak of malaise and circumspection.

“Well hello there, little fella.” DFM pauses, startled to be addressed in such a cordial way.

“You’re the first visitor I’ve had in quite some time!” DFM appears to be intently listening to Fred, if only to take in the sonorous quality of his voice.

“Take a load off, friend! I don’t have much of anything to offer, but I’m sure you’re fairly adept at fending for yourself at this point.” DFM then immediately proceeds to scrimmy away, marking the exact moment in which his fabled moniker first graced Fred’s consciousness.

Fretful Fred considers himself a bit of a wordsmith, in addition to his accomplishments of the stage and screen. It took about two to three seconds to formulate the nickname, during which time there were numerous cognitive connections taking place, not at all dissimilar to the series of adjustments that a world-class athlete must make while performing the repetitive tasks that put them in that spotlight in the first place.

Our tiny rodent companion lit the fuse that led to a lightning-quick series of self-deprecating blasts. Every moment neglecting my life’s passions seems to just fuel the bonfire of self-hindrance, perpetuating a “woe is me” mentality that only spirals as the moments compile. My pesky new pal graced me with his presence at the intersection of doubt and fear, giving me the semblance of camaraderie, no matter how fleeting. But, just as all moments ever experienced by we, the mortal folk charged with hoisting the weight of the cosmos (whether or not weight is an accurate measurement), our fledgling friendship seems to have vanished as suddenly as it appeared.

“You’re a real Deflatermouse, you know that?” Freddy knew that an intellectual connection couldn’t be made, now or ever, but he continued to consciously deny the existence of a language barrier for the sake of infusing any wonder into his underwhelming existence.

Systematic – 07:22GMT

Heaven-bent for suicide and lifted from a promissory life, I spent my passion undermining solitary refuge as a systematic impulse-follower.

She said to me, “listen son, I’ve gotta tell you something you may not wanna hear. I ate that last piece of taffy you had saved up, and it was glorious. I know you were planning to give it to your grandma next week, but guess what? Now we’re even. Don’t you go around promising me trips to Hawaii anymore, you arrogant prick. Just because I birthed you doesn’t mean I need to be your friend. Fuck those stereotypes. Now are you staying for dinner or aren’t you?”

Is that all I am? A systematic impulse-follower? I can paint over my stripes, but it’ll chip off and reveal my ugly nature before too long.

I miss having the option to chew my food.
I really wish I could use my arms, too. Fork, knife, the whole deal.
Maybe I crossed too many people to be a free man.

XCIX

T: “I’m sick and tired of this situation, constantly running around and spitting out rhetoric at every person I see, able-bodied or otherwise. Who knows, if they can’t perform daring feats on a high wire, that doesn’t mean they don’t know how to recruit that kind of talent.”

R: “What the hell are you yammering about? Tightrope walking?”

T: “Yes, tightrope walking. Some consider it to be vastly more important than the entire field of biology, you know.”

R: “Are you referring to the French family of wire walkers?”

T: “Well, they’re definitely included, but they’re certainly not the only ones who find the art of high-octane balancing to be more important than life itself. Believe me, there are a lot of them out there.”

R: “If by ‘a lot’ you mean a couple of dozen, then I’m sure you’re correct. Don’t go making this into a whole thing just to show how much you like tightrope walking–no, scratch that, spectating while others walk the tightrope.”

T: “A ‘whole thing’, you say?”

R: “Yes, hijacking the conversation to give you the upper hand, or what you think happens to be the upper hand, when in actuality you’re just yammering about something that probably came up in a dream, and you can’t tell the difference between dreaming and waking anymore. I mean, I haven’t seen you running around in years.”

T: “Maybe this did come to me in a dream. So what? Surely you’re not discounting the importance of dreams and their power to influence the waking world. I don’t have any examples of this, but I instinctively know that some of the best minds of all time made serious breakthroughs after having dreams and applying them to their lives.”

R: “Yeah, that’s how the periodic table was developed by Mendeleev. I happen to know that you’re not one of the best minds of all time, sorry to day. Just stick to your day job.”

T: “What an original witticism. Can you at least admit that you’re not much of a genius either? All you can seem to do is knock me down when I try to explore new scenarios.”

R: “Yeah, stupid scenarios.”