Anyhow

The gratitude of my temporary inmates seems only to ring truer with each passing circumstance. I suppose I may have acquired a skill or two over the years where it pertains to the custodial caretaking that so many in this throwaway culture would prefer to ignore.

It’s not Stockholm Syndrome that these folks have come down with, since I’m not the one responsible for my subjects’ captivity, but it is definitely a similar phenomenon (a guy sure could get used to all the attention, anyhow). My wards do actually receive that kind of no-strings care that the medical insurance industry forgot about as soon as private concerns got their hooks into it (even though their advertising tries to sell a different story).

Perhaps because of this comfort, every single one of our emerging beer-krausening technologies has been behind schedule under my watch. Maybe it was a mistake to combine a halfway house with a chemistry lab. Our three chemists-in-captivity are functioning alcoholics who just use this particular project to get tanked on the job all day–with my tacit blessing, I suppose. Last Thursday, Ernie–the least-tactful of the three–decided to not look both ways before crossing the street on his lunch break (I do give them at least a little time in each week to get out and smell the flowers). Long story short, Ernie got hit by a shipment of cabbages (with a truck attached), survived, and is now suing the city for not putting a stop sign in a 40 MPH zone. As soon as he got back from the hospital, you’d better believe I gave him quite the lecture on roadside awareness!

Chucky Dan

Falsified drugstore positions
will do you no good, Chucky Dan.

First you’ll want to get at the razor blades
without customer assistance–good luck
if you don’t have a crowbar
or similar striking/prying agent.

Before you know it,
you’ll be halfway down the rabbit hole
of convenience addiction.

It won’t be long now
until you find yourself
checking into hotel rooms
just to assess the price of french fries
(weighted against the corresponding preparations).
Trust me on this one, CD.

Working the Counter

Grand ideology
rakes tempestuous porcupine failure
across the arena, unconcerned
with the aftermath involved.
Mammal tidings prevent intervention.

Audience opinion shattered,
an elevenfold androgen titan
laps the competition
for the price of a
testosterone meatball sundae,
a similar portion to what you’d get
at Arnie’s when Glen’s working
the counter. Tell him
Jimbo’s dog had puppies,
$1,500 a pop to a good home.