Month: September 2013

SnB on…Laughter and Dating

When you drink, and your laugh sounds more like a crow than a human being, this should deter you from choosing to drink….or to laugh, or both. It is not for some people, as evident with the crowd I played for last night. A very attractive lady who sat across from my DJ booth got a little TOO drunk. Her voice changed drastically (why do voices change when you drink I wonder?) She kept cackling all night. I was thinking of borrowing a scarecrow from one of the neighbouring farms and sitting it next to me. Maybe it would drive her off!

Speaking of laughter, we had an annoying time at a restaurant recently. We sat in a booth, and the seat back was fairly tall, over my head to be exact. Behind me sat a woman with the most annoying laugh ever. From what we could tell, she was on a first date with a very sad man. Every time he said anything, she would virtually howl out laughing, so loud that it annoyed the hell out of me and everyone else in the building. I bet he wanted to make a run for it, but was too polite to do so.

I had a date like this myself many years ago. The girl was quite beautiful, all my friends seemed to envy me for getting a date with her. Everything went splendid at the beginning of the night, before we stopped into a little diner for a meal. When she walked in, most graciously, she said that I should be warned, her nickname was ‘garbage guts’. Looking at her, I would have disagreed, as she had the body of a model. I was surprised when she began to eat however, as she hopped directly to the buffet section, and filled her plate to the hilt. She swallowed food like it was her last meal. I just sat there. And then she got real giggly. By giggly, I mean that she laughed at everything I said. Her laugh was not that of what I figured, it was real loud and very annoying. I excused myself, saying that I had to go to the bathroom. When I reached the counter, I paid for the meal, left a tip, and took off. I peeked into the window and seen that she had made another trip to the buffet, and loaded her plate even higher with food, and when I was making my getaway, she shoveled food into herself like crazy. What a hungry woman. I never saw that girl again, thankfully!

I broke up with lots of women for silly reasons. I was like a Seinfeld episode waiting to happen. One lady actually asked me out. There was a movie playing that she wanted to see, so I agreed to accompany her. She asked if I could drop by her house to pick her up. When I reached her door and rang the doorbell, two small kiddies answered the door. One of them looked at me and asked “Are you here to pick up mom?” When I answered “Yes”, the other said “Are you gonna be our NEW DADDY?”. I took off again. It was a good thing I had a fast car back then!

 

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Saturday’s lesson

There once was a little squirrel who lived in a tall tall tree on the edge of the forest. His name was Bob. Every day Bob planned to cross the highway because that is where all the good nuts grew. On Monday, he decided to attempt a crossing, but just before he got to the highway, he changed his mind and headed home. It took him until Wednesday to make up his mind to try this again. This time he got right to the edge of the highway and then he changed his mind again  and headed home.again.

On Saturday, when the highway was most busy, he had no choice but to attempt it again. His nut supply was quickly depleting and he knew that if he didn’t replenish his supply, he would probably starve throughout the cold winter. This time he couldn’t turn back. He rushed through the tall trees, over the rotten  stumps, along the river and finally to the highway. When he got to the edge of the roadside, he took a deep breath and made a run for it.

Everything was going so good. He had made it right to the center  line of the highway and hadn’t seen one vehicle. Bob started on  his way again and headed quickly to the other side of the highway when a large tractor trailer hurried along the highway towards Bob. When he was just about across the road, he changed his mind and headed back toward his home when suddenly it happened!

SQUISH!

Our little friend became road kill.

The next morning, Charlie Crow happened along our squished friend on the highway..Drool from  Charlie’s beak began to form  as he salivated at the thought of eating little Bob, now lying very flat on the highway.

Moral of the story?

Never second guess yourself or you will end up in the belly of a  crow. Or  something like that!

Second moral of the story? Read this story little squirrels and maybe you wont end up running to the middle of the road and then changing your mind and getting squished by my truck like you did this morning! GOD! I hate squishing cute little animals.

Euzebe and Eunice

My Great Grandparents, Euzebe and Eunice lived at the end of the road in our community. Theirs was the first house built when the community was nothing but a hay field and a bunch of trees.

Prior to moving to the community, Euzebe was a farmer in town. This was before the United States set up an airforce base in the area. When the army came to town, all  residents were forced out of the area. My great grandfather was given $25 per acre for his land, take it or leave it. He took it.

Forced out of the farming business,  Euzebe tried something different. at 32 years of age, and with six children, he went  into the convenience store business. Knowing virtually nothing about this particular venue, it wasn’t long before Euzebe gave it up and went back to farming. Since all  the fine farmland was now paved and used for an airstrip on the army base, he had to set up shop elsewhere. He found a large parcel of land that the army had little use for, and the rest was history.

My dad said that his grandparents were the biggest tightwads ever. I guess that came from having it all, having it all taken from you, starting over, and struggling to make ends meet afterwards. Euzebe and Eunice had eleven children, so times had to be tough.

I remember when they were alive. They lived in the same house Euzebe built when they first moved here. The boards were rough, no doubt sawed by the man himself, and the roof looked like it would collapse at any point. The house was white with green trim, and the yard was surrounded with giant trees that must have been at least sixty years old. Out back there were hay fields where Great Grand Pap’s kids must have spent hours playing and working, and where he made the hay that fed his livestock that eventually ended up on their supper table.

I remember once, the entire community was up in arms. Apparently Euzebe and Eunice were involved in a car accident. Driving his very undependable Renault, Euzebe took a wrong turn and ended up flipping his little car, the two of them sitting upside down in the ditch. My dad was first to find them, and without panicking, he simply turned the little car over and they were on their way. People back then were tough. Nowadays they would be claiming whiplash and suing the Renault Automotive company.

The thing that stood in my mind most was Halloween. Going to their house was always a surprise. On one occasion, my great grandparents peeled oranges, and gave each kid a piece of orange, which eventually made all their candy a sticky mess. On another occasion, I received a big hunk of Duncan Hines Orange cake, simply dumped into my pillow case (we couldn’t afford fancy Halloween bags) and creating quite a mess in the bag.

My great grandmother died at the age of 88. Euzebe would see many more years.

In his later years, we would discover many things about the man.  The first thing we discovered was that way back when the army claimed his land at $25 per acre, he really did receive a tidy sum of money. Some $80,000 dollars in the very early forties made him a rich man at the time. Still, he lived the life of a man with no money. Everyone  wondered what he did with his money. Some of his younger grandkids thought that maybe he buried his money in his hay field, and many of them were found digging holes out back as the old man slept. Some thought that maybe he stuffed the money in his mattress. He came home once to find his mattress cut to bits, the thief making away with stuffing and maybe a cut or two from the old rusty springs in his bed. Nobody found anything to prove that he wasn’t penniless.

One  day, the truth came out. It usually does. It was discovered, mostly by word of mouth and other gossip, that Euzebe had a secret. A secret so secret that even his beloved Eunice knew nothing about it. Euzebe had another family in another community. It had been rumored that he sent all his money to this woman to care for his ‘other’ family. He bought her a boat so that their kids could earn a living as fishermen, an  occupation quite satisfying in outport Newfoundland at the time.

I met one of the kids once. He looked like a carbon  copy of my grandfather. Same age too. The old bugger lived a double life, one with my family and the other with his other family. Of course he couldn’t be questioned about this at the time. At 99, he developed a form of dementia, forgetting almost everything he had ever done or learned. At that time, the family voted to put him in a retirement home.

There are still stories about his time in the Long Term  Care  Center. Apparently dementia didn’t stop his sexual urges, and at the ripe old  age of 100,  he could be seen running around naked, chasing pretty nurses. The old bugger!

Euzebe passed away not so quietly at the ripe old age of 101, the same age that his dad was when he died, and the same age that his father in law was as well. He lived a life filled with adventure and worry and everything that went with it, and left us with so many questions…any other families? The old bugger as mom always called him.. Go figure!

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Those Eyes: A Masterpiece of Terror

I

“It was her eyes that led me to her. As blue and bright as a hot summer day; and that blonde hair, it only made her eyes more beautiful. When he was around, they were even brighter. I can’t imagine a more perfect set of eyes. I had to have them. They would look great in my masterpiece; a whole lot better than they look in that ugly head of hers.”

The disgruntled old police sergeant listened with disgust as The Masterpiece Murderer, a serial killer he had been tracking for the past twenty years bragged about his gruesome works of art.

II

It was a cold, damp September morning when Henry Halling, a crusty old war vet and lifelong resident of The Dockside Inn, noticed something floating in the harbour. At first he was hesitant on seeking it out, but in the end, his curiosity got the better of him.

When he got to the edge of the dock, the image became more visible. Using a fishing net that he grabbed on the way, he fished out the item. At first, It appeared to be two red bobbers, a popular fishing item here in the county, but with further notice, old Henry was horrified to find that he had fished out two bloody eyeballs. The old man nearly collapsed at the sight, and it took him several minutes to regain his composure. He took for the police station immediately.

“Something else has turned up” said Edwin Turnbuckle, the investigations  officer assigned to the case. “A set of eyeballs” he added.

Edwin suspected that those eyeballs belong to one Cynthia Belling, a beautiful fashion model who disappeared a few weeks ago. Edwin knew that the two cases were related, and when the DNA results were returned, he was certain.

“We have a madman who stole a set of baby blues from one gal, and a head from Ms. Belling, minus her eyes. What the hell is he doing?” he pondered. “Get that bastard back in here, I think we need  to talk!”

III

“…a yes, Cindy Belling. Perfect cheekbones and a wonderfully sensual smile, but the worst set of eyes in the hemisphere!” bragged Edgar Lewis, aka The Masterpiece Murderer.

“I had a ton of work to do just to get the eyes right, thanks to my years as a surgeon, everything turned out just right!”

“We need to know where the bodies are, the rest of the bodies. Families need closure, they need to bury the dead. Can’t you at least allow them that?” asked the police commissioner.

“The bodies? I don’t know where the bodies are, I don’t handle the bodies, I am an  artist, not a madman!” uttered Edgar.

“You don’t handle the bodies? Then who does?”

“I have many who like to ‘help out’. They are the ones you should have in custody, they are the ones who are still doing my bidding, and providing me with my models. You should let me go and find them” he said.

While the questioning continued, a lone figure walks along the docks. The night is especially dark, not a light from the moon  or even a star. Streetlights seem to be at a minimum on this side of town, and the dark figure is content in the darkness.

On his back is a large sack that appears to contain something very heavy, like dead weight. He stumbles to the edge of the dock and unloads his shoulders, letting the heavy sack drop into the water. The sack was no doubt filled with rocks, as it quickly plundered to the ocean  floor. The figure doesn’t leave just yet though. Instead, it makes its way to the doorway of the Dockside Inn, apparently waiting for something or someone. Seemingly impatient, the figure tosses something into the window, causing it to send glass everywhere. In minutes there is an explosion inside the Inn.

Suddenly the door to the Inn swings open and a crowd of patrons run from the  building. Among  the crowd is a long legged blonde. The figure makes his move, tacking the woman to the ground and covering her with a dark brown  sack. Wielding a knife, he stabs the sack until there is no longer any movement or screams. He ties the bag at the top, heaves it over his shoulder and heads to the edge of the dock, where he jumps into the water and quickly disappears from all sight.. The whir of an outboard motor take him and his quarry to safety.

IV

Signs were up all over town. The biggest thing to hit this little town since the ferry service. Hotels were booked solid, bed and breakfasts were preparing for the crowd as well. The gala opening of the Dockside Gallery was the most talked about event in years. People from all  over came to the little town to see what all the commotion was about.

Reviews of the art show came in from all over the United States. The paintings were all done by one of the most misunderstood geniuses on  the planet. His work was compared to that of Da Vinci. What made him even more famous was the fact that at the time of the showing, the master was locked in solitary confinement in a maximum security prison.

Thomas Cerling, long time supporter and sometimes assistant of Edgar Lewis, toured the country, holding exhibits painted by his best and probably only friend. Everywhere he went, people were hypnotized by the beauty and horror of the paintings. Now at last, the show was scheduled to take place in the birthplace of the genius himself.

On opening night, it was standing room only, as people gathered to view the work of art. Between the oohs and aha’s of the crowd, it was easy to see that they enjoyed themselves.

The painting that gained the most attention was the one in which Edgar was arrested for. The image showed thousands of severed arms and legs in a pile, and at the center was the most beautiful image of a woman  ever depicted on canvas. The face of the model was a cold white, causing the bright blue eyes to nearly jump out of the picture. People stood in amazement, staring at the image. Looks of terror and and curiosity ensured that they could keep coming back. At the end of the show, one wealthy resident offered over one million dollars for the work of art, the one simply entitled ‘Eyes of Desire’. He was turned down  abruptly.

When word of the art show got to the prison, Edgar was the first to hear. Apparently two of the guards who watched over him chatted among themselves, and Edgar heard everything. Despite being barred in the cold dark cell, a insane smile grew on the face of the madman. He was gaining popularity and becoming famous even while he was held here. Listening further, Edgar discovered that the two guards were so taken by his work of art that they were slowly becoming fans. Perhaps he could use this to his advantage…

——————————————————————————————————————–

With his master still incarcerated, The lone  figure entered a dark building. Carrying a heavy load on his shoulders, he dropped the sack on a table and began to work. Using an ax, he chopped at the body, detaching the arms and legs from the body, and stacking them in an irregular pile on the floor. He took the head and dug the eyes out with his bare hands and them in a bucket that contained many other body parts, and cleaned the sockets with a green solution. He then tossed the head towards the pile of body parts and left the room.

V

“If the warden finds out, our asses are so fired! We may just end up in here with you!” said Frank O’Dell, the senior guard, as Edgar worked his magic.

“Relax, it’s not like I am asking you to help me escape, at least not right now. The longer that I am held captive here, the more famous I am getting. Now  with my magnificent artwork on display all over the country, I am gaining popularity as we speak! All I ask is one little favour, and you will get the rewards that I promised.”

The two underpaid guards took a minute to mull over the request, and then quickly made their decision.

“If all you want is a few tubes of paint and some brushes, and a photograph from your assistant. I am sure we can get them to you. Let me get this right…we do you this little favour and you reward us with ten million dollars? That sounds too good to be true!”

“Well, there is something else, but it is a very little thing. I need the warden’s wife’s eyes. Two of them. I don’t care what you have to do to get them, you don’t even have to kill her, just do what you have to do to get them for me.  Can I count on you?

“Ten  million  dollars to get you the brushes, paint and a photo.  What is this about the eyes?”

“Apparently I have not been persuasive enough with you. At this moment, my assistant is at one of your homes. He has your beloved daughter in his sights. In his hand he has a tool  that I use quite often. He plans on waiting until your little girl is fast asleep. If I don’t have what I asked for by midnight, he will get me another pair of eyes. Your daughter will be famous. Well, at least her eyes will be. Its up to you.”

The two men looked at each other in dismay. How did they let themselves become involved with this madman? Was he telling truth or was he trying to force them to do his bidding with lies? Could they take the chance? Was their job and their morality worth their daughter’s eyes?

VI

FOR  THE FIRST TIME EVER!

THE LATEST WORK OF ART BY THE AMAZING AND ALLURING EDGAR LEWIS IS ON DISPLAY FOR ALL TO SEE AT…..

THE LOCKHORN PENITENTIARY!

The artwork, which the master painted not on an ordinary canvass, but on the walls  of the solitary confinement cell where he had been imprisoned made the headlines immediately. He calls this particular work ‘Thelma’, not coincidentally, after the first born  of one of the prison guards; the one who was reported missing early this morning. He claims that he named his painting Thelma as a tribute to the hardworking men at the prison. We suspect differently. The mural features the image of a beautiful head of a woman lying in a mess of broken body parts. A set of tiny blue eyes lie next to the head, as if they were in search of a home. Looking closely at the arms and legs,  it is evident that they were piled in such a way that the pattern actually spelled out the name of the missing girl. This was done prior to her going missing.

Outside the prison, Frank O’Dell talks to the police chief. He is sitting on the edge of a table with his head in his hands. He cannot talk without crying.

“He offered us a ton of money if we provided him with his brushes and  paint. When we agreed, he added one more item. He wanted the eyes of the warden’s wife; he said that if we didn’t comply, he would take the eyes of our children. Of course, we didn’t believe that he was capable of such an act. How could he, locked up and all? I guess he had someone help him out. Please find the madman who killed my little girl and desecrated her body. That bastard should be put to death!”

While Frank ranted his disgust, the crowd were won  over by the horror and beauty of the artwork. One of the fans asked to see Edgar, to thank him  for giving him the opportunity to see this magnificent painting. With all the commotion, Edgar managed to sneak out among the crowd and mysteriously disappear into the night.

Sirens began to howl, the entire prison was locked down  and each of the visitors were searched. The investigation provided nothing. Edgar was gone.  This was his plan all along.

VII

After a five year absence in the art world, several works by Edgar Lewis began to resurface. The work, while still grim and horrifying, lacked the intensity of his earlier works. No more were the lifelike images of body-less heads with eerie eyes, the newer works featured images of confinement and abandonment. Perhaps it was the time that Edgar spent in prison, behind cement walls and separated from the victims of his imagination. Either way, the artwork was not as popular as it once  was. In Edgar’s mind, it seemed as if his fans cried out for more, and that they demanded that Edgar return to his old ways. With sales dwindling, and an effort to make ends meet, Edgar  figured that he should act on his fan’s wishes. What Edgar didn’t realize was that the police force never stopped looking for the Masterpiece Killer, and that the moment a piece of art was identified as his creation, they would resume the search.

Edgar was faced with a dilemma. If he signed his work with a different name, people would figure that he was an imposter, and refuse to buy his artwork.  If he signed his name, or painted images that matched his earlier work, he would be identified by the police and returned to prison, or even worst, be put to death. There seemed to be no solution….unless Edgar faked his own death.

His plan was simple. He had to find a follower that he could trust totally. Edgar found the perfect partner in his old friend Thomas Serling. Thomas  had recently been released from a mental institution, having been cleared by doctors. Edgar was quick to contact his old  com-padre, and in just a few hours, their plan  was created.

That night, Edgar and Thomas visited the graveyard to obtain a body.  They planned  to dress the body in Edgar’s clothing, and plant various personal items on the body. Things like a belt buckle that Edgar had always worn

Thomas would claim to have found Edgar’s house on fire,  along with an entire collection of Edgar’s older paintings. The artwork would sell  for a fortune, and Edgar would become famous. Edgar planned on moving somewhere, probably Mexico, where he and Thomas would share in the fortune that would be made from the artwork. A simple plan, but it had to work!

The two began to work on their plan. Thomas visited several cities and apprehended several new victims. He made sure that at least half of the victims fit the description of his master. “The eyes. Look for beauty in the eyes, the rest we can fix with makeup, but the eyes have to be perfect!” said Edgar, as he sat and waited for his newest art models.

Thomas, never the genius, actually attempted to overtake an undercover police woman. Suzy Shelling was working as a model at a local agency, hoping that the two serial killers would take the bait. With a set of dazzling blue eyes and a perfect body, it was only fitting that Thomas would attempt to take Suzy from where she stood. One dark night, while Suzy was leaving the agency, Thomas made his move. He ran up behind Suzy and covered her head with a black plastic bag. He wrestled her to the ground, knocked her cold and threw her over his shoulder and headed for the marina where Edgar waited patiently. When Thomas arrived, he bragged to Edgar that he found the perfect set of eyes, and they were attached to an even  more perfect body. Edgar ran to Thomas, unzipped the bag to see if Thomas spoke the truth, and was surprised at the outcome.

“YOU IMBECILE! SHE LIVES! YOU DIDN”T KILL HER FIRST!” Shouted Edgar.

Suzy hopped from the bag, gun in hand. When Edgar tried to knock her out, her gun went off, killing the madman instantly. Thomas, in an attempt to get free, ran for the boat that was sitting next to the dock, only to find that fourteen armed police waited for him to arrive. Thomas was taken into custody and later charged with attempted murder, kidnapping and conspiring to commit a felony.

With Edgar Lewis dead, the paintings of the madman sold like hotcakes. Fans of the mastermind fought to obtain his works, and his paintings were displayed in galleries the world over. In a strange way, Edgar finally got his wish. He became a famous artist. The only problem was that he couldn’t be here to see it happen.

a lesson in manners

At work the other day a rushy customer came into the store.  The guy was very ignorant and rude. He asked for Studio Blue, a brand of cigarettes. Because of the crowd in the store and the way in which he spoke, I didn’t understand him. I asked “the red or the blue”, to which he replied “The blue ones on the right, are you Fucking Blind?”

I remained calm and while removing both my hearing aids, I responded “No sir, I am deaf.”

His face quickly grew very long and it looked like he shrunk in his shoes.  He said nothing, paid for his cigarettes and left the store.

The next morning he came back. He reached out to shake my hand and apologized. “I am so sorry for being so rude to you. I had no idea that you were deaf, and you were more than courteous to me, despite my terrible behaviour. I spent most of last night awake, feeling terrible for what I said. You, Sir, taught me a valuable lesson; never again shall I lose my temper and harass a hard working person…..” Ya Right!!  Even if I didn’t suffer from hearing loss, he shouldn’t be treating people that way. Some people just don’t get it.

 

Choosing your future

When I was a kid, my dad was a logger. I think he hated his job. He worked for a contracting company that treated their workers like dirt. He always swore that none of his kids would have to work as hard as he did. My dad didn’t have much education. Back in the day, if a kid was fortunate enough to learn to read and maybe add, that was practically their education. They went to work  soon after.

My dad did everything he could to keep me out of the logging industry. He wanted me to have a cushy job indoors. I guess that is why I went directly from high school (at the ripe old  age of 16) and into a Clerk Accounting course at the local community college. I hated it and flunked out badly. I was always an English geek, and hated numbers. Still do!

After flunking out of accounting school, I picked up a few jobs. The first (and worst) was for a bible totting God fanatic and his weird family. The Butts ran a furniture store in the area, and since they couldn’t keep workers very long, there was always work available for young people. I still  remember the job interview; it was given by the mother of the store owner. She used to walk up and down the hallways of the store singing hymns. She came in and took one look and obviously didn’t like what she saw.

She started quoting bible verses and acting like she was performing an exorcism on me. I would have worried, but I knew she wasn’t Catholic (I was/still am) so she wasn’t qualified to perform an exorcism, but that is another story for another time. I wondered what freaked her out, only to discover that it was my appearance.

At seventeen, I proudly sported my first mustache. The thing took me almost the entire seventeen years of my existence to grow, and even though  it may have looked  like a patchwork quilt, I was quite proud of the thing. My dad used to say that it looked like I got too close to a candle, and soot gathered on my lip, but I was  still proud of my manly ‘stache.

“The mark of Satan!” she hollered. I looked around, terrified. “Where? What are you talking about? You are scaring the hell  out of me!” I replied.

“That thing on your lip, God Bless you my son, but you should know that facial hair on a man  is a sign of the devil himself!” she said. It was obvious that she didn’t get out  much, either that or this was her first time  out…out  of the insane asylum!

She made me shave it off before she would give me the job. I didn’t want to, but I had my first car, and I needed gas to run the thing.

That  job didn’t last  long. They were looking for a co-pilot on  their delivery vehicle. At least that is what their full time driver said. He was the dirtiest person I ever met.  He had the same smudge of dirt on his neck for four weeks. The younger workers in the shop  had a bet going to see when he would finally wash the thing off. I won the bet. I bet that his neck would come  clean  the first time we got a hard rain.

Bert was a complete nutcase. He used to drive that poor old Chevy two ton like it was a Nascar racing car. He would  make all the deliveries early in the morning and we would spend the rest of the day searching for car parts for an old Dodge Charger that he was fixing up. One day we arrived back at the shop  with the entire front end of an ‘R/T that he had found in an old barn. When we  pulled into the shop, the owner’s mother was waiting. She fired him and promoted me to chief driver. She never asked if I knew how to drive a stick shift.  I didn’t. Two days later when I killed the clutch, she fired  me too. That was the only job I was ever fired from. Right after I was fired, I began working on my mustache again.

There were other jobs, some good, some horrible, but in the end, I wound up working side by side with my dad, in the logging industry. We worked for my uncle, who ran a contracting company. We worked together for over twenty years, and to this day, dad still says that those were the most enjoyable days he can remember.

I recently took a job at a service station/convenience store. The work is steady but enjoyable. I can easily outwork the younger kids because I am not glued to a cell phone and I don’t know how (and don’t want to learn how) to text.