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    Run For Your Life, Black Hockey Jesus!

    The End

    So starting this blog as a means to develop my chops and then finding myself in front of 1000+ a year later, reading a post to a bunch of you was quite a ride. And I think probably enough. A good happy ending.

    You guys made good on Andy Warhol's promise. Thank you so much.

    This blog will self destruct as soon as I copy all the posts I want to keep.

    It's over. I quit. It's a calm day with no Wind. ~bhj



    Whenever anyone opens the glass sliding door, Luna, our cat, makes a mad dash for freedom and everyone panics except me because, seriously, if you’ve got a little smidge of wildness jangling around inside you trying to break through the veneer of your lame domesticity, fine, get the fuck out of here. I pretty much hate your guts anyway.

    But then the second you go out to get her, she barrels back into the house like some pussy French philosopher all angsty about her freedom. I just shake my head at her. Is there anything more pathetic than a lame house cat? You know there isn’t.

    BLACK HOCKEY JESUS: You don’t make any sense. Why do you bolt outside whenever someone opens the slider?

    LUNA: It’s that wretched little girl. She pets me too hard and yanks my tail. So whenever I see a gateway to freedom, I swell up with the notion that any fate beyond the slider will be better than living with that 5-year-old monster. I’m telling you. She has to go.

    BHJ: Dude. You’re a stupid cat. You will go long before the little girl goes, I guarantee you.

    LUNA: But all I want to do is sleep and be stupid and she won’t leave me alone. Even when I bare my wild fangs to bite her, she persists.

    BHJ: She’s a pain in the ass. I know. But I’m telling you. If you keep biting her, you’re gonna find yourself gone.

    LUNA: Meow. This is preposterous! What am I supposed to do? Just let her terrorize me? For the love of God it’s my tail. You can’t imagine the way that shit hurts.

    BHJ: Listen, fucker. She’s rough on all of us. She’s always angry and she banished any hope for solitude or peace. But do you see me biting her in the face? No. Biting her in the face will only get us kicked out. That’s the way it is. She gets to do whatever she wants and you don’t count.

    LUNA: But that’s so pathetically anthropocentric. The fate of the world hangs on mankind awakening from its love affair with itself and realizing that animal forms of consciousness have as much intrinsic value as human beings. Why should I get kicked out when she’s the one who starts it?

    BHJ: Because you’re a fucking cat, dummy. Listen. I’m trying to help your furry ass. You can’t bite the children.

    LUNA: But you’re merely proving my point. I’m getting the shaft just because I’m a cat. But cats are a miraculous manifestation of Being unto themselves. There’s no logical ground upon which to value people in a greater way than cats.

    BHJ: Hold the phone, philosopher puss. I’m trying to do my part by personifying you in a blog post. I’m trying to give you a voice above and beyond that whiny mewling you do when your water bowl’s empty. But you still don’t pay the mortgage, you’re still stupid, and—as far as I can tell—you’re absolutely fucking useless. Your only hope is to be cute but look how you’ve let yourself go. How the fuck did you get so impossibly huge?

    LUNA: Oh man this is bullshit. Meow.

    BHJ: Well then why the hell do you dart back into the house? Why don’t you make a break for it?

    LUNA: Because I think that perhaps, in spite of its many drawbacks, I have come to love my confinement. I’m defined by this confinement.

    BHJ: Well there’s fatherhood for you. Sometimes, the kids feels like a jail. But they are cute little jails. Yes. That’s it exactly. Fatherhood is a cute little jail where the wardens are short and mouthy and the bars are made of licorice.


    Friday Crossroads II

    Wonder Twin Powers... ACTIVATE!

    Form of... DadCentric!

    The new DADALOGUE is up at DadCentric - talking about the sensitive issue of yelling at kids. Jack and Lucy give their 2 cents.

    Shape of... MamaPop!

    Also, over at MamaPop, I investigate the murder of Ozzy Osbourne's dog.

    Do you resent it when you come here and I jerk you around like this? But you came here looking for one post and I gave you TWO! It's like you got this 2-for-1 special but you're complaining about a couple extra clicks. You're never satisfied. Do you realize that I make next to nothing? Maybe $12 a month. I hope we can still be friends. No, just go. Say nothing more, and go. Please. Just go.


    What We Can Know

    So we’re eating lunch at the pool and Lucy’s making this face like someone farted and I’m like “Good God now what?” I mean the little kid is always pissed and bitching about something. The moment she becomes conscious, she’s angry. I swear her issue is with consciousness as such. I can totally imagine her one day staring me in the face and saying with conviction, “Daddy. I never asked to be born. Being born pissed me right the fuck off.”

    Anyway, this time she says “A bird jumped in my chips.” OK. So there’s a horde of begging pigeon bums at the pool who will waddle up on you and snatch your chips if you’re not careful. You gotta guard your chips. But if a thieving pigeon bum does manage to snatch a chip or two, it’s not the end of the world. There’s more chips in the bag. In fact, it’s a good thing to help bums. Finslippy’s kid gives bums money. I’m just trying to find a bright side, you know? Lots of parenting is about trying to find the sunshine in big piles of shit. Or in this case, when birds steal your chips.

    But she was right. This time, it wasn’t just a freeloading pigeon stealing her chips. When I investigated, there was indeed a bird in her chips. It was tiny. It was dead. I’m going to restate this for you in italics after a line break for emphasis because this kind of crazy shit only happens to me and my family.

    A fucking bird committed suicide in my daughter’s potato chips.

    I’d be pissed too. It was gross. I looked up in the tree and found a nest full of tweeting baby birds. What the fuck happened? What would make such a young bird with such a promising future leap to her own death like that? Or wait. Maybe her siblings pushed her out of the nest. Can you imagine? A bunch of murderous baby birds conspiring to shove her into my daughter’s potato chips to make it look like an accident. Fucking devious little birds. Look at them tweeting and shit like nothing even happened. One of your own is dead you chirpy bastards!

    Jump cut. There’s no moral. What would you make of it? My life’s crazy.

    Later that afternoon, Lucy shoves a bunch of red Nerds up her nose. Plugs it good. She can’t breathe, you know? I’m thinking ER, but Jenna grabs a pair of tweezers and begins to pluck red Nerds out of our little kid’s nose. She’s being very calm and supportive while Lucy screams and I’m just crazy irrational: “WHAT THE HELL WERE YOU THINKING?!? WHY IS YOUR NOSE PLUGGED UP WITH CANDY?!?”

    But she doesn’t know. I don’t know either. Who could ever know? I begin to wonder if stuffing your nose full of red candy might in some way serve to alleviate the trauma of seeing a bird commit suicide in your potato chips. It’s counterintuitive—I know—but so much of psychology is. But really. Who knows why kids do anything? There’s no shit like this in the parenting manuals. No “Witnessed Bird Suicide” in the index or what to do about it. Why do any of us do what we do? Why would we stuff red Nerds up our nose? Why would we leap to our own death? Why do we sometimes wake up angry? Fuck. Why were we even born at all? We don’t know. We can’t ever know.


    Sometimes, Your Real Life Accrues Meaning From A Fictional Context And That Is Cool

    After a long hike with the kids filled with lots of I’m hots and water stops, I was thrilled to find this picture.

    (click me)

    It reminded me instantly of Frodo and Samwise Gamgee, having just parted ways with the bulk of the fellowship and crossing the River Anduin, marching fatefully into the Emyn Muil on their long journey to Mordor. 

    Did you hear that? It was Jenna: “NERD ALERT!”

    Jackson marches ahead with his eyes on the path. Lucywise peers tentatively at the orange mountain. The specific quest, the hike on that particular day, opens out to evoke their quests in general—all the adventures waiting down their paths. It makes me smile. It makes me re-imagine what I consider to be their idiosyncrasies as potential strengths. Imagine that. Childhood as Fate training.

    JACKO BAGGINS: Lucywise! You’re a sneaky thief and I’m a bottomless well of useless trivia. I’ll distract the guard while you steal the map and the key and the secret files and the petrified digit rumored to be the finger of Jesus Christ.

    LUCYWISE GAMGEE: I am not no thief neither!

    JACKO BAGGINS: Indeed you are. And you’re also a liar. But save your lies for our enemies, Lucywise, and get ready for some serious thieving. Thus far peanut butter cups and Hello Kitty rings have served as your training for the task at hand. The moment is dire. It's time to shine.

    LUCYWISE GAMGEE (sneaking off in a stealthy manner that rustles no leaf nor snaps no twig): Okway Jay Jay.

    JACKO BAGGINS: Hello there.

    GUARD: Halt! What business brings you to the gate of this scary and well protected castle?

    JACKO BAGGINS: Just looking to rest my legs for a spell and perhaps share a bit of conversation. Is there some kind of law against having conversations with weary travelers? 

    GUARD: Well no. I suppose there's not.

    JACKO BAGGINS: It wouldn’t surprise me if there was ha ha. Did you know it’s illegal for elephants to drink beer in Natchez, Mississippi?

    GUARD: You don’t say?

    JACKO BAGGINS: Sure as shootin’. And did you know that frogs aren’t permitted to croak after 11 PM in Memphis? And in Vermont, it’s illegal to whistle underwater.

    GUARD: Well I’ll be. There sure are some strange laws on the books.

    JACKO BAGGINS (seeing Lucywise creep off with the map, the key, the secret files, and the petrified digit rumored to be the finger of Jesus Christ): There sure are, humble guard. Thank the Gods that there’s no laws against guards having conversations with weary travelers.

    (click this picture to see Lucy guzzling a water bottle that matches her shoes)


    Friday Crossroads

    Have you heard of Momversations? It's a video blog where a handful of world famous Mom Bloggers get together and discuss parenting issues. I'm totally addicted to it. But just like the White Man landing on this continent and stealing it outright, I stole their idea and called it Dadalogues. Because it's simple. Men don't like women having their own thing. I wanna be sponsored by Target. I want fancy editing with a chipper introduction. So go check it out at DadCentric.

    Also, Michael Jackson died.

    My ideas about his impact, in spite of his oddities and strange relationship to children, are posted over at MamaPop. Have a great weekend. Drink some 7-Up.



    This morning I was stirred by the pretentious desire to spring from my bed at 4:30, to don naught but a pair of running shorts, and kick off 10 light footed 7 minute miles. I was an airy nothing carried on the delicate wings of morning, fueled only by the engine of my monstrous ego. Shortly thereafter, I dipped my quill—made from the feather of a lonely suicidal eagle—into a well of my own blood to continue working on my novel using bombastic red calligraphy. It was fucking awesome. The whole time I felt better than you.

    Actually, that would be a ridiculously pretentious way for me to start the day, so instead I cleaned up my daughter’s piss. An unexpected side-effect of writing a personal blog is unsolicited advice about what’s appropriate for me to write about, but thank God for it. Dear Eric From My Last Post’s Comment Section. Here’s a post just for you about monsters and piss.

    Lucy’s bedroom has lately been a riot of Monsters. For all the hullabaloo with which I write about the imagination, I tend to neglect the fact that it’s also filled with Monsters and sometimes a horrible place. I’ve got dead friends in there and it’s not like they only visit atop clouds bearing enigmatic advice. Anyway, the Monsters are rioting and every night, Lucy begs for a spot on Jackson’s top bunk. This seriously cramps his style and the only thing worse than a 5-year-old terrorized by Monsters is a 10-year-old with a cramped style.

    So me & Jenna, wise like Solomon, just alternate nights. We cramp Jackson’s style one night and throw Lucy to the Monsters the next. It’s only fair.

    Last night was Monster night so—yeah—Lucy was crying at 4:30 about a pissy bed. As I moved through mountains of books and princess shoes and self-pity just to get the sheets off her bed, she took off her yucky pajamas (Oh God is that pedophile fodder? Writing a blog is chock full of many a snare) and of course just tossed them—wherever they might land. I stared at them, thinking that maybe my hot stare would indicate to Lucy that throwing piss wet pajamas on the floor was a fucking irritant. But it was too early for such subtle teachings.

    BLACK HOCKEY JESUS: What happened, Little El? You don’t pee the bed. Peeing the bed’s for little kids.

    LUCY: Calamari did it.

    BHJ: Calamari peed your bed? I thought he was dead.

    LUCY: No, he’s done being dead sometimes.

    BHJ: So. You were sleeping with your 16-year-old sometimes dead boyfriend and he peed all over your bed. Oh honey, you deserve so much better. Where is that imaginary jerk?

    LUCY: In the closet. He’s 27 now.

    BHJ: Good God. Calamari!

    CALAMARI: Yes?

    BHJ: Why are you, a 27-year-old sometimes dead imaginary figment, sleeping with my 5-year-old daughter?

    CALAMARI: She’s afraid of Monsters, sir. She likes to cuddle.

    BHJ: Which is well and good. But that’s no reason for you to empty your bladder all over her bed, you rogue. Perhaps you could go light on the juice before bed, you incorrigible lover of fruit punch.

    I wet the bed every single night until I was in the 6th Grade. I have a built in sympathy for it. There’s so much about the night that you can’t control. It's more than a metaphor. During the night, things are irrational and uncertain and out of control. But even these words are adult abstractions trying to get a handle on what refuses to be handled. The dark's original inhabitants are Monsters.



    After a long night of writing I sneak into bed and turn into a big hunk of dead stone, only to shake awake an hour later when Jenna’s alarm goes off for work. I wait for her to emerge from the shower and act like I’m sleeping while I steal looks at her getting ready at the mirror. Tracing all the lines of her, I vacillate all dreamy between lewd thoughts and sparkling fragments of poems.


    I was reluctant about the 4th of July. I question the current outbreak of patriotism against the background of a larger world historical context. But mostly I hate the traffic. You sit all bumper to bumper for an hour after a 9 minute show, wishing for wide open spaces where the breathing is easy. I pouted. Refused. Threatened to move to Canada. Then we packed the cooler full of trail mix & juice. We went early to secure our spot on a soccer field in the shadow of purple mountains.

    But when they started shooting off I was inexplicably happy. Jackson was beside himself. Lucy screamed “A Flower!” at every single one. I tore into two people—one completely absorbed in my own childlike awe at colored fire in the sky and another asking “Why?”.

    What is it about fireworks?

    I imagined a space between moments completely composed of fireworks. Too miniscule and instant for our eyes to see, maybe the way each moment bleeds into the next is via the snaps and crackles of fireworks blurred over by a lack in our ability to make such fine distinctions. Can you imagine? The whole day held together by tiny bridges of exploding colored fire.

    I then turned to the idea of fireworks being an outward representation of thought. Maybe that’s what makes us look up and smile. A chance to actually see the way we think. Those flashes of light shooting out from the center are neurotransmitters on their impossible mission across the synapse to spread their urgent message. Maybe a firework is a great idea lighting up your head. Do you ever feel like that? Like finally figuring something out after thinking long and hard is some kind of colored explosion coursing through your brain. Fireworks might be mirrors of figuring something out. Or maybe seeing something beautiful is a firework in your head. Like when something grabs your attention, seizes you, and makes you look—a flower! Or a woman in the morning on the edge of getting dressed.

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