Cajun Tomato’s NYC 100 is a periodic series chronicling my experiences and observations as a New Yorker. Today’s post – No. 36, if you’re keeping score at home – looks at the flu gospel and the secret to salvation in the harsh New York City winter.
She sat to my right in the pharmacy’s two-seat waiting area moments after the needle poked me. Her age and weight were probably equal, somewhere between 85 and 90. She was frail with big veins and bigger glasses and spoke to me in rapid Spanish and smiles, holding up three, four, five fingers to punctuate her points. I nodded along but had zero clue what the words leaping off her tongue meant. Except, that is, when she tapped her left arm. It was the universal signal for flu shot. I returned her smile but resisted the urge to tap my arm.
NOTE: I started this Tuesday during lunch and finished it this morning.
If the idea of god disappears
Who will be there to answer our prayers,
To ease our fears or count our sins
Does this mean the world will never end
Will we look within, accepting responsibility
For our flaws and simple-minded hostilities
Or will we treat each other like shit
And wash our hands clean of all it means to be human
I don’t want to live forever, give me 70 years
Yeah, 70’ll provide enough laughter and tears
But I don’t want to think much about death either
There’s nothing sexy about the Grim Reaper
I’m looking east, toward the sun and the city
Away from the west and its gray misery
Time to wipe away fear and play my chips
As skaterbros say, “Fuck it dude, life’s a risk”
I grew up attending a Southern Baptist church in south Louisiana. Both my parents were ordained Southern Baptist ministers, though they long since switched denominations. I ate from a buffet of fundamentalist hatred and bigotry each Sunday morning for 12 to 15 years. No surprise, then, I have issues with organized religion. Today, I’m reading a book about Iraq’s people called Night Draws Near. Some of the fundamentalist clerics author Anthony Shadid described within remind me of Southern Baptist ministers I have encountered. I don’t need to meet anymore fundamentalist holy men — whether Christian or Muslim.
NOTE: This is a composite sketch of Southern Baptist ministers I heard preach — I did not include my parents in the composite because they always struck me as moderate, even left-leaning (oh no!). The worst offenders were the revivalists. They would scream and stomp and work themselves into striking distance of a heart attack. All to rescue sinners like me. Also: I upped the tithe amount most pastors request. Call it artistic liberties.
Click below for “Don’t, The Pastor Said (You’ll Go To Hell)”.
No new cars, no new jewelry!
America is fucked. I know, I know. I am being too optimistic. Forgive me.
Kim Kardashian has more than 12 million Twitter followers. Theoretically, she could be our next president. If Rick Santorum, Mitt Romney, or Ron Paul were serious about reaching the White House they would ask Kardashian to run as her vice-president. PS: Did America divorce Newt Gingrich while I was sleeping? Guy is unlucky in love.
Kardashian could be the next American Idol. Instead of singing she would play her dimly lit porn with Ray J every week before a live studio audience. “Yeah dawg, you really made that one your own,” Idol judge Randy Jackson would bark after watching the clip.
In honor (or dishonor) of Nancy Grace’s now infamous “The devil is dancing” quip about the Casey Anthony not guilty verdict, I penned this mini-rock opera, “The devil is dancin’.” I’d imagine the music for it is something like Charlie Daniels torching his fiddle till his fingers bleed or the slinkiest, sweatiest disco beat you’ve ever heard. Yeah, it could go in a number of ways.
Nancy Grace, I know you’re somewhere this morning putting on your daily scowl. You’re probably practicing your shouting in the mirror. Something’s working you into a fury. And that’s all well and good. But just take a moment to calm down. I think you’ll enjoy this piece.
After all, the devil is dancin':
What does it all mean?
WARNING: This review features potential spoilers, not to mention countless blasphemies against the sacred talents of director Terrence Malick.
NOTES: This film is rated PG-13. Brad Pitt, Sean Penn, and Jessica Chastain star. Director Terrence Malick has helmed movies such as Badlands and The Thin Red Line.
On his way back from the IMAX presentation on the birth of the cosmos and the death of the dinosaurs, reclusive director Terrence Malick drove his rickety ’52 Ford truck down a dirt path deep in the heart of Texas and discovered a god-fearing family under the thumb of an angry father. Satisfied with his find, Malick teleported back to present day NYC, a metropolis dressed in vanity as tall as its skyscapers, and observed a brooding man, still clinging to his childhood in Texas, amid all the sin and degradation of the modern age.
Sounds disjointed, right? Doesn’t make sense? Ok, I confess: This is not the genesis of how Malick developed the storyline, if it can be called that, for his fifth full-length feature, “The Tree of Life.” Though if it had been, it would have made more sense than much of what appeared on the screen.
Countless reviewers have cited Malick’s ambition in their reviews of “The Tree of Life,” as if ambition alone is a sweet-smelling aroma capable of seducing moviegoers into buying into surging hype. Sure, few directors would create a film that gazes at the monolith in Stanley Kubrick’s “2001: A Space Odyssey” and attempts to make sense of it. I get that, but attempting such a film and pulling it off are light years apart.
It’s 7:20 p.m. PST. The West Coast Rapture should have happened 80 or so minutes ago. I took a power nap in preparation, hoping God would tap me on the shoulder and say you’re one of the few, the proud, the raptured. But no dice.
I’m sitting on the couch, relaxing after my softball team’s epic 10-8 victory. I am still wearing my team’s shirt — the one with the rooster clutching two softballs on the front. Come to think of it, my cock and balls-referencing T-shirt might have been the deciding factor in me not being raptured.
My roommate, @ben_lundin, just flipped channels to an NBC show called “Minute to Win it.” A show contestant just kicked two soda cans into a bucket in less than a minute to win $5,000. Seriously. Dare I say lowest common denominator?
The “kicker” just thanked God for allowing him to boot the soda cans in a bucket. I’m pretty sure God does not care about your ability to kick cans like a bum, sir. But, I’m pretty sure your church will want 10 percent of your game show winnings. Thanks!
FYI: The contestant is an unemployed fence builder from Concord, N.C. Seriously!
I am tempted to say, “Shame on NBC and its owner, General Electric, for showing this pig’s piss to a national audience. Yes, I called it pig’s piss. I call it like I see it.” Yes, all of the above. But this show is oddly watchable like Ramen noodles are oddly edible.
Today I read a link posted on Facebook where someone mentioned Osama bin Laden should have been in hell years ago. Translation: The U.S. government should have killed him years ago. (Well, duh!)
One of the people who replied to the link wrote they did not believe in hell, but that if such a place existed then bin Laden would most certainly be there. Interesting.
So where is bin Laden tonight? His body is somewhere in the North Arabian Sea. It is in the bellies of fish. They’re probably already shitting him out. Fish know evil when they taste it. Gives them fish runs.
But where is bin Laden’s soul? I guess the answer depends on your belief system.
Big Freedia at VoodooFest
I knew seeing Big Freedia in the tiny sauna that it is Holocene would be intense. The diva’s music dares you not to sweat a pound of mussy liquid out of your system.
And yet, two hours before the show, I watched the Trail Blazers defeat the Lakers at a local bar, in the company of four chicken tenders and fries splashed liberally with salt.
I knew what Freedia’s show would entail — namely, azz everywhere — and yet I gluttoned out anyway. By the time Freedia (pronounced Free-duh) came on around 12:30 a.m., I regretted my decision, but there was no going back.