Wednesday, February 22, 2012

THE BEATEN GENERATION: The Dick Principle (Chapter 8)

by Dick & Poli Tico

NOTE: Gays are just minor characters in the novel but in about ten chapters, they figure prominently. This is one of them, where we "unpeel" the psyche of Herman Schonberg. Another character study so don't expect half-bakes, that's not the style here.

Starting this chapter, the Paris segments featuring Hsu will disappear in some chapters but don't wonder if he suddenly would appear later on. I withheld the segments because they discuss French financial politics & they have an ongoing Presidential campaign.

Chapter 8: Over The Hill Blues

"Merkel hat kaum Spielraum"
Claudia Kade, German journalist

"Stacking supermarket shelves is better than dreaming of stardom."
Iain Duncan Smith, British Minister, Conservative

"Gli americani torneranno a investire"
Mario Monti, Prime Minister, Italy

"On ne peut pas dire “C'est juste un film”..."
Selon Kamea, French filmmaker

January 21, 2012 11 AM, Hongkong-Beijing Time, South China Sea

In 2011, the military budget of the United States was 768 billion dollars, the biggest in the world. Despite the economic crisis & all the talks of austerity, no politician tried to touch it. That amount was seen as an insurance that the most modern military on earth would always be American.

As a Chinese warship lurked over an American destroyer near the Spratly Islands in the South China Sea that morning, nobody was thinking of military budget, military high technology or even military theory for that matter. On one side, a row of Chinese soldiers were retching by the railing of their aging warship, a former hand-me-down from the Soviets, apparently discomfitted by something they saw on the enemy side.

On the American side, the soldiers were not really conscious of the Chinese anymore. They were more intent in controlling themselves so they won't launch into runaway guffaws as their commander shouted his orders from his high horse. This little episode in the high seas will go down in future military annals in varying versions, each retold to ensure the maximum laughs each time. But there will be a common punch line: who would have thought that a nude American commander would take command conjoined with a just as nude soldier because his highly stimulated anal sphincter locked around the ample organ of his sex partner? Soldiers of future generations will have raucous times recounting how the two faced & embraced each other, the 6'4" soldier easily taking in his commander's weight as the latter crossed tightly his legs around the boy's buttocks so he won't slip & snap the boy's organ on his way down. He barked his orders over the right muscular shoulder of the soldier & sometimes he even rested his head on the latter's muscular deltoids. How sweet, a naughty machinist whispered to a companion but they had to run to the bowels of the ship before they could finally laugh themselves out to a catharsis.

The Chinese commander was more or less successful in controlling his upwelling stomach but barely. Still he wasn't surprised by what he saw. Homosexuals usually flock to where the boys were & the military was where the real boys were. He read a clandestine North Korean report on the many American officers frequenting the gay bars in Itaewon, Seoul's version of San Diego's Hillcrest in the Korean Peninsula. There was a joke that they only had to bomb the gay bars and the Koreas could be united. The agitations by the gay movements in the West that resulted on the repeal of their "Don't ask, Don't tell" policy just emboldened the many closet officers in the American military to venture out. Tentatively at first, now they were in full force.

Well, that's just a sign of their weakness, mere gays could hold their balls, he thought. The Chinese should encourage the Americans. Let them party. The big American military budget must be equipping hi-tech gay sex clubs inside their costly military installations. China didn't have to exert, it just have to wait for the queens to self-destruct.

338 BC Chaeronea, Ancient Greece

Pancratius knew it was just a matter of minutes and it would be over. He looked at the sleeping young boy, his parabatai. That's the first sleep he got for the last 3 days. He was sure it was the final lull. Demetrius was only fifteen and it pained him the boy might not live to see the next sunrise. The Macedonians were just massing at the next hillock in the east for the final assault any moment now.

The last of the army of lovers...

He was the only one in love, the elder heniokoi. He knew Demetrius' heart finally learned to beat just recently but it was not for him, it was for a girl. He had his chance to mold it the way the wise men before him had done, it was part of the education of the boys. He could still have tried it but he knew war would have its way. His imminent death has finally given him clarity.

They were successful in Thebes. The teachers and warriors who loved beautiful boys. It was easy to trick the wealthy parents who were only too glad to delegate the unruly adolescent years of their sons to what they thought were selfless souls. Especially if they were great philosophers and warriors who would go to extra lengths to provide training and education not only to the brain, the heart, but even to the dirty parts like the anus... his favorite. How greater could a lover be? He wondered if future parents would be as uneducated as the ones in his time. Stupid fathers, delicious sons. What a great time to be a pederast. He hoped the killjoy civil leaders will never be wise enough to spread education to the masses.

It has been 40 years since the Sacred Band of lovers were formed. 150 couples. They vowed to protect each other to the death. Their loyalty to each other will finally be tested today.

"Demetrius, wake up". He shook the shoulder of Demetrius. It was now clean of the grime that collected after three days of non-stop combat. He was seen as the heniokoi but he lovingly cleansed it while the boy slept, oblivious of the reproach in the stares of the other older men who couldn't stoop down to do it to their younger partners. A final atonement.

The boy opened his eyes. He has always been a light sleeper.

"You can leave me here. Zelda is waiting for you." Zelda was the name of the girl that Demetrius murmured in his sleep.

"I can't leave you. Father will be angry with me."

"I'm done with life, boy, yours is still ahead of you. I know you love Zelda. I'm giving you your freedom to follow your heart."

"If I leave you, I will be branded a coward. "

"You are still young, you have all the time to prove you are brave."

"Father told me we are lovers, we should defend each other... until death. I made a vow to die for you."

"You've always believed in me as a teacher, haven't you?"

"Yes. I respect you like my father."

"You believed I loved you very much?" He tried not to choke. He was not a sentimental man. He was angry with the sudden rush of strange emotions.

The boy just nodded. Those innocent eyes are arrows to my heart, he thought.

"Then I'm telling you now I'm letting you go because I love you very much."

"I'm a good soldier, Pancratius. I won't run away from the enemy. I will fight to the end."

"You love Zelda, don't you?"

A moment of hesitation. He saw the boy did not want to hurt him. But eventually he nodded.

"Our relationship was just arranged. I was the only one in love, you never were. It's clear now you never will be. It was my most fervent hope that you would have learned to love me just like in any other arranged relationships... but unfortunately, we will be denied time ... You're free to go, Demetrius. It's because I love you so much that I'm letting you go. You don't have to die for anybody's delusions."

"I'm not afraid to die."

"I will be the one who'll kill you if you don't leave now."

"You can't."

"I will kill myself if you don't leave now."

"You can't"

Pancratius smiled. He's resigned. "Promise me, Demetrius, when you see me die, run, run away to Zelda, will you promise that?"

"I have my honor. I will die fighting for you. I will protect you til death.""

"Promise me, you'll run, Demetrius." He looked at the boy almost imploringly. There's a certain stoicism to innocence and he wanted Demetrius to grow up big. Fast. "You won't have to fight for anybody anymore. Just run!" Then he stabbed his sword into his heart. The boy cried his name, tried to run to his aid but, with the last ounce of his ebbing strength, he slapped his hands then shouted as strong as he still could. "Runn!!!"

He was smiling when he took his last breath. He saw Demetrius running. Away. To Zelda.

He never knew all of those left behind would be killed before the nightfall. The Sacred Band of Thebes was no more.

January 20, 2012 10 PM, Pacific Time, Malibu

Without delay, cable news transmitted live pixelated video feeds of the morning drama in the South China Sea. The Chinese authorities immediately saw a propaganda opportunity & they lost no time. Herman Schonberg caught it at his home office as he sipped his usual brandy before going to bed.

Well, it was just a matter of time, he thought. Sexuality was a private matter and it had no place in politics. He was never in favor that gays in the military should declare themselves as such. They would only be unnerving the esprit de corps of the unit, he thought. No way would it give the equality being sought by gays anyway. Another of the stupid political delusions which have been piling up recently even as the West skidded in almost all the fronts. All it did was erect a facade but it would only undermine the country in the end.

This is a major breach of the facade, he smirked.

He never considered his attraction to other men a major problem. It was just a secret like his other many secrets & he was in no obligation to share it. Life was not supposed to be a walk in the park, the fun was in negotiating around the bumps so one could reach the ice cream vendor anyway. It's never wise to go around proclaiming your warts. If you can't flaunt you're ugly, why should you flaunt you're abnormal? In a nature which prized perfection, it didn't really make sense to invoke selective exception. Much more if that exception invited revulsion. You can't tell the gears of evolution to just stop & exempt gays for any pretension much less if it's only for humanitarian reason. Evolution discarded the deletory by default, and it's insane to interfere with a natural process bent on improving the species. If there was anything wrong, it was delusional politics, this insistence of equality by the crabs who couldn't accept they simply didn't amount to much. He knew his being gay was a defect, and he was realistic enough to accept it & just worked around it. Coming out was never an option. Only the pretentious would applaud him anyway & he had no time for those types.

Having sex with Herman Schonberg was the prima facie evidence that a boy was heterosexual. Herman made sure of that. He went to great lengths to assure himself a boy was really straight before even inviting him in. Each sexual act was beneficial to everybody, most of the big actors in Hollywood passed through his bed. The secret Hollywood code of conduct: been there, done that. Doing it with a straight boy was supposed to ensure his secret remained a secret forever. It appeared now he was wrong there. Apparently, there was never going to be closure to each clandestine sexual act. The secret was out there in that external hard drive and it was just a matter of time, it would explode. He was sure many reputations and careers would be destroyed.

Except his. He never relied on an image, he was simply too rich to be really affected eventually anyway. The great equalizer: great wealth. He laughed at all the historical revisionism just to prop up gay delusions. There was this longing to revive the grandeur of some ancient time. Homosexuals were never accepted at anytime. Except the rich ones, of course. In a way, the gay philosophers in the upper strata of ancient Greece were wily enough to gain acceptance, but the poor ones were ridiculed in the streets even then. What changed since then? He was a billionaire, even if it was known he was gay, not much will change because he could still control his milieu anyway. You can't say that to the gays on the streets. Same storyline through the centuries. He was not convinced that would change. Ever.

Especially with how the world is turning now...

He could see no comparison with the Black struggle. Which was just a matter of cultural prescription but all the human functions remained the same. With gays, you have to challenge the very same pathways that respond to pleasure & coax them to lose their code for revulsion for the abnormal. He was gay but he couldn't even force himself to concede that to gays. The revulsion was just too strong. He could see an impenetrable physiological, not political, brickwall separated gays from their delusion.

He considered the gay movement as just a part of the overbearing pretentiousness which pervaded Western culture in the past decades. Their sudden prosperity spoiled the pretentious to imagine they were bigger than what they really were so they developed this fantasy to share their "good fortune" by smothering what they considered "unfortunate" with "compassion". To the point they politically blackmail anyone who were not as pretentious as them. It amused him to hear they were actually babbling about modernizing the world. Nice to dream of future utopias when you know you'd be dead to admit you were just fooling yourself all along. Wait til that prosperity was taken away from them, or are they so busy wishful thinking they haven't noticed anything?... He was gay but he was naturally homophobic... so what was he, an enemy now of these clowns? If they were any wiser, why did they build their campaign against Homophobia when majority of the people more likely have clinical symptoms of Homophobia in varying degrees anyway? All the pretension of compassion didn't exempt one from being stupid. Even if they threatened revolution, would that stop him or Herbert from vomiting?

Were they Plasil now?

That reminded him, he was getting nauseous watching the military conjoined sexual twins in his television screen. He took two 500 mg. capsules of Plasil, one tablet of 10 mg. Diazepam, threw away his brandy in the bar sink then shut off the TV.

He thought too much time was wasted on irrelevant politics. He's not interested in becoming embroiled in a political hullabalo amidst all these pretentious people. If you're ugly, don't pretend you're beautiful. If you're abnormal, you're abnormal. He was never in favor of giving false expectation to people who will remain forever trapped in their abnormality anyway.

He felt somewhat surreal knowing he would be exposed as gay soon. His brother will look down more on him. Not that it would really matter, he despised Frank anyway. But he still wanted to be the first to tell him.

"Frank, it's Herman, I called because I want you to be the first one to know something..."

"Have you seen the breaking news?"

"The sea incident?"

"I bet all those stone-age people who wanted to control our lives are shitting in their pants right now. I bet they must be praying sick to their gods now. Let's see if they could still eat their money after seeing this."

"That fool shouldn't have been assigned to that boat."

"You don't get it do you? Enough of you peddling fantasy, show the rot, dammit! It's the wretched of the world who are the salt of the earth, boy. They say all these faggots were sent by the devil, show more of them and rub the most wretched on their faces. But you act as if you were born in a high horse like them. Have you shown a faggot in your movie? No, because you worship only the money. The faggots are your vampires and atomic bombs, boy, lob them to scare the real devils so they scamper away."

Herman saw no virtue in mining the gay dollar in showbiz. He was leaving that to the peanut operators. To him, that market merely paid for hamburgers and French fries, a waste not only of good investment, but worse, of many talent. Hollywood was littered with star materials who became spoiled merchandise after being hoodwinked into appearing in all those gay propaganda roles. Mere sacrificial lambs for a never cost-effective delusion because your audience would just be the same converted miniscule crowd anyway. Politics and business didn't mix in his universe. He fired a producer who advised him it was "wise" to do so to educate the conservatives & the religious. His politics was liberal but he knew a dumb employee when he saw one. There's nothing easier than changing the channel, turning off the TV, not going to the cinema or buying a CD. The only real dent would only be in the shrieking decibels of self-congratulatory hot airs in the production offices of mostly gay men, lonely women & their political cohorts. Small-time pursuits. He could see the imagined bandwagon will be swept away in the next backlash anyway.

He had a reputation for being ruthless. He just didn't beat around the bush. Once, he already completed the casting of a movie when he saw the picture of one of the chosen male lead stars while surfing. He clicked a link which opened into a clip from an old movie. The actor was engaging in a somewhat explicit gay sex scene and there were a hundred comments mocking the real sexuality of the actor. The usual racket. There were tons of small-time gay directors hunting for young actors who would kill for any chance to be noticed, even if it was for a forgettable gay movie. Innocent they have just been suckered into a poison landmine to their dreams. Nobody became big because of the "vaunted" gay market, but many careers were nipped in the bud instead. Still he gave the boy a chance. He told himself if he didn't feel anything if the boy was presented to him, he would forget about it. The boy must have been so honored to be invited by the great Herman Schonberg into his private sanctum. But when the boy touched his hands, his stomach instantly made the decision for him. Anybody rejected by Herman Schonberg's stomach never worked in Hollywood again.

"Like I told you, sooner or later, they'll fall flat on their faces. That's reality right there, boy," Frank's voice was very loud now from the other end. He could visualize his sharp features, very animated, ominous.

"America doesn't deserve him, Frank. He did his country a great disservice by being a fool."

"Ah, the imperialist bro talking now, eh? Why shouldn't he be? Just because his asshole wanted to be a cunt? The wretched are the soldiers for the better world, boy. That major has no idea how he just turned into a national hero!"

Herman thought it was useless. Conversations with his brother have always been theoretical whirlpools.

The older of the two sons (with different mothers) of a Berlin physician who escaped the Second World War to build a new life in America, Frank Schonberg was a former Professor in Political Science in Stanford University, drived a clunky Volkswagen Beetle, had a former porn actress wife and lived a lifestyle more simple than that led by Herman's private secretary. He was one of the original Hippies in the Bakersfield area. To Herman, Frank still was. At 69, he was still a Hippie who listened to the promises of tomorrows that were "blowing in the wind".

January 21, 2012 12 Noon, Hongkong-Beijing Time, South China Sea

During erection, a big portion of the blood volume enters the cavernous tissues of the penis. They should flow back to the body after a few hours to restore the blood supply or normal metabolism could be deranged producing relative dehydration & acidosis. There were already many cases of mortality recorded as a result of locked-in penis during copulation. Mostly, vaginal. If ever, the spectacle created by the spastic anal sphincter of Major Albert Hageman would be the first to be fed live to international television.

The Chinese were basking on the PR manna from heaven. They even had the chance to show to the world their humanitarian side. It turned out the American destroyer's benzodiazepine supply has been raided by addict soldiers from its clinic. Eventually, they had to airlift the conjoined American soldiers to the Chinese warship so the proper muscle relaxants could be injected to them.

The Chinese Commander was interviewed by a burly TV reporter who looked like a sumo wrestler.

(Translated from Mandarin)

"What do you think happened, Comrade Commandant?"

"Well, we know the enemy has no morals. They love to stuff things into their... behind."

"What kinds of things, Comrade?"

"You wouldn't want to know."

"I'd like to, Comrade, that's why I'm asking you?"

"Believe me, you wouldn't want to know."

"Comrade, I told you, I'm dying to know!"

The commander whispered it to him. Immediately, as if by magic, the reporter's eyes became dreamy and he darted his tounge over his lips as if licking an imaginary ice cream. The Chinese Commander was unnerved by the transformation of the sumo wrestler who seemed to have been turned into a blooming flower bud right before his eyes.

"Really?" The reporter's voice became soft, almost breathy.

"See, Americans have very low morality. They are very dirty, indeed."

"Was it big?"


"T-the Americans... yes, the Americans!"


"Really... big?"

"I said definitely."

"I bet it was delici... upps, dirty indeed. They are dirty, aren't they, Comrade?"

"Definitely dirty."

"Can we see how b-bi... dirty they are, Comrade?"

"The doctor declared it off-limits. They are going to separate them by injecting something."

"I can't apply as his assistant?"

"No, you're a reporter. You have no more questions?"

That seemed to have snapped back the reporter from his trance. He immediately modulated his voice into a baritone. "Ah, of course, as we have seen, the Americans really have very low morality and definitely will rot in the garbage soon. That shows the ascendancy of the Chinese way of life over these over the hill degenerates..."

He was not fooling the Commander. The latter was just barely able to control his stomach watching the two abnormal Americans conjoined to each other a good part of the morning, but being face to face with this abnormal was the last straw. They never saw the likes of it before in Chinese television. Ever. His breakfast splattered all over the reporter's face.

At least, the Chinese reporter was a fast thinker. Dripping, he shouted to the camera before it signed off: "Now, you see how degraded America is, it makes the Chinese vomit."

January 20, 2012 New York City

Richard Gluck, the character actor, was beside himself. He did it. Well, he had no more to gain by hiding the truth. Actually, he has outed himself to close friends a long time ago. He knew he has reached what he could reach and it would be wishful thinking to think otherwise. He was 40, he couldn't be the A-list star of his fantasies anymore. So he did it the big way. He came out by marrying his boyfriend.

And as he looked at the face of Roberto, he saw his future. Then he saw no more. Only one bullet and his head was shattered.

Next: Chapter 9

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

THE BEATEN GENERATION: The Dick Principle (Chapter 7)

by Dick & Poli Tico

NOTE: I am amused by friends asking when is the next murder. For this first novel in the "The Beaten Generation" series, there are two serial killers, Tina Ford, & History, which kills civilizations serially. Compared to the latter, Tina is a babe in the woods. This novel is mainly an anatomical dissection of what might turn out to be the latest victim of History, the real-time on-going murder of the present civilization. Tina Ford's murders are just the file covers. This is presented as fiction, true, but we can't help but feel it could be much closer to reality than to fantasy. Sketches of nipped-in-the-bud ideals?

Apparently, in the preceding chapter, some friends didn't bother reading the part where there were withheld paragraphs. Better read it, the gist of the novel was there: when Hsu asked himself that rhetorical question- Who would bother to listen to these idiots if they came from Bhutan? Well, that's their future.

Chapter 7: History Is A Serial Killer

"... Le pic de la crise est à venir et que la “bourrasque financière” pourrait même intervenir pendant la campagne électorale..."
Michel Rocard, ex-Prime Minister, France

"... Bring in the clowns"
Robert Fisk, British journalist

"Ich habe schon harte Sache durchgemacht"
Roger Federer, Swiss tennis player

"L'Italia non e la Grecia"
Giorgio Napolitano, President, Italy

January 20, 2012 Los Angeles

History is a serial killer.

Why do human beings cling to values that degrade them? Because those are what make them live. But everything came at a price, Herbert thought, those could also hasten their end. History and nature have always conspired. When predictability and boredom set in, it's time to mess up the pieces and play another game. The danger was when man started thinking he was the decisive player. The reality of just being a pawn would only dawn at the end.

Herbert knew something was very wrong. He could trace it from the youth rebellion from the conformity of the 1950's. Perhaps, the fact most of the beatniks died broken was a portent of things to come. While everybody was distracted & innocently wistful of the promise of the unknown, he believed it was at that point when the seeds of destruction were sown. It's always romantic to fight windmills but romance is not the default mode of human beings. Existentialists believe it was suffering. The dumb believe it was delusions. Lamentably, majority belong to the latter. Nobody dared to ask the obvious question how democracy could survive forever if most were dumb. Worse, if the dumb started believing they were not dumb. What if the dumb started believing that equality meant they were winners too, and that it was cool to defy, there's always drugs to numb the resolve anyway. Inequality still became worse, they say, but how long could you really dumb down a real winner? It was self-preservation that forced corporations to start defending themselves in the 1970's and form lobbies to protect their interests. Everybody had to protect his turf and nobody was expected to give in. He thought everybody was eventually so compromised by the system anyway to be able to prevail. Fifty years and he could feel the floor started caving in. He could see the resulting ideological gridlock was the lull before the storm.

They saw what were coming. He and Herman Schonberg. They had this little competition where they funded non-governmental organizations & determined at the end of a period who has helped more. Palliatives, true. A little contest between privileged gods.

The Clash of the Titans...

There were things he would have wanted to clear up with Herman. But now, he knew that was already impossible. His body has already made the decision ... Herman Schonberg was history.

Homophobia doesn't necessarily mean hating homosexuals. Herbert definitely didn't hate them. Unfortunately, he's totally physically allergic to them. Homophobia is not only a political mantra, it is also a clinical curse. Sometimes, he could alleviate the symptoms by simple medications like anti-emetics. Herman Schonberg was just too strong a phobic shock that his body defenses went berserk. Almost all his favorite actors he found having sex with Herman in that external hard drive. Who would have thought his film heroes & friend were all homosexuals? Even now, one hour after Herman hurriedly left when his suit was drenched by his vomit, the gross feeling was still unrelenting. He has washed his hands ten times. He has spent half a bottle of rubbing alcohol. He knew it was not microbial but he just wanted to do some cleansing. Anything.

He took another 500 mg. capsule of Plasil, the third in the last hour.

He still shuddered as he thought of the role assigned by history to homosexuals. Sodom. Thebes, Sparta. Rome. Los Angeles?

History is a serial killer. It kills civilizations.

He remembered what Paul told him... You want gays to be treated like everybody else but you push them to be a special case instead, inviting resistance & setting him up for possible backlash in the process. Gays could be cute but you turned them into villains...

January 20, 2012 Beverly Hills

Tina felt nothing. Not even numb. She must have died. There simply was no justice in this world. One second, love was overpowering, the next second... Oh, Armageddon? How could she have fooled herself?She was as delusional as that pompous bitch friend of hers, Patricia, who must be having another facelift that very moment. Patricia's face sagged when she sobbed a while ago. She was sure the sutures behind the ears just gave way. Christ, Patricia sobbed like a pig, how she would have loved to skewer her & make a kebab. She wondered how Patricia would have tasted with all that silicone & Botox. But wait, forget Patricia. She almost got distracted there, she's in despair, dammit! She's desperate... What could have she done to deserve such a fate? But wait, wasn't that some lyrics from a Beatles song? Mr. Moonlight. She just lost his Mr. Moonlight! Oh... How she wished she was back in Liverpool, away from this terrible fate!

Tony called up this morning while she was on her way to Malibu. That he received an urgent call from his mom in Vallejo and he had to drive there immediately. She might have been born in a small cottage in Hoylake on the wrong side of the Mersey in Cheshire but she has been in America for thirty years. She was sure that dreary Sweet Dreams Motel was nowhere near Vallejo.

Was she younger? She bit her lower lip, feeling the gloom constrict again her chest as she got down from her car. But, heartache or not, she still made sure she maintained her regal bearing- straight back, chest out, chin up, butt out, with an automatic come-hit-her look into her eyes as she scanned the other parked cars in front of the mansion. She counted four. Her spirits lifted a bit, she was sure she'll have her dramatic entrance. She needed that. She shook her butt once, twice, then swayed her hips a la Marilyn Monroe as she strode towards the ornate front door of the mansion. She imagined all the guests were peeping from cracks somewhere marveling how beautiful she walked in her 3-inch red stilleto heels. But was she as beautiful as her? Did she walk like a fashion model like her? Did she love 3-inch stiletto heels like her?

Her spirits lifted some more when the door was opened by a liveried Negro as she reached the top step. She smiled sweetly to herself, they were obviously waiting for her. She took a deep breath once, checked her posture, tossed langourously her hair to one side thinking that was how Kim Basinger did it, deep breath once more, then sashayed her hips forward, all the while imagining she was entering a stage before a multitude waiting for her all night long. Miss England is the new Miss Universe! She vaguely wanted to pinch herself, did she hear the thunderous applause? She actually raised her hand as she entered the doorway & did that small beauty queen wave to the five people seated among the faux French provincial chairs in the living room.

The schmucks just briefly glanced at her then resumed their conversations. Stella came forward to greet her, she always wanted to do the "air-kisses" she always saw being done in Europe. She felt sophisticated that way. Stella, her hicky friend from Oklahoma, was the owner of the mansion. There were benefits to being a beard, she thought as Stella introduced her to the guests.

A French advertising executive from Paris who looked like a Beirut carpet dealer, a poof designer who looked like an emaciated cadaver, a fat black woman who looked like a Santeria high priestess instead of a respected Law professor at UCLA, then another poof, a closet variety notwithstanding, the husband of Stella who looked like a Mexican cartel dealer (which he probably was, she suspected). Some crowd, she thought, feeling too beautiful already to waste her time. Stella told her the guests "control the world's taste" & "will change the world". She wondered what world, Lilliput? But she should show her high breeding, she told herself. Stella had her flights of fancy, prone to exaggerate to compensate for her hickiness. These riffraff had human rights too, they should be treated with "compassion". Her high-minded sacrifices for tonight will contribute to a "caring society" in the end, she consoled herself self-importantly.

"It's good you didn't miss this one," said Stella as she returned to her seat on the left of her husband who was obviously uneasy sitting beside the cadaverous designer on his right side. Like poles repel each other, Tina thought."We're really having these absolutely interesting & really intelligent conversations. It's from gatherings such as this where ideas that will shortly shape the world are hatched. Only the chosen ones could be here. It takes intelligence to understand the unknown & I am sure my guests are the fearless ones who will unlock it for a modern world."

"Oui, I'm so privileged to have been invited, Stella," the French executive quipped, graciously smiling. She had bad teeth, thought Tina. "Your intimate parties are only for the select, I'm sure. I've become wiser a million times just for being here ce soir. Not to mention the aroma which is tiltillating my nose now. Steak par excellance it will be, n'est-ce pas?"

"Steak?" growled the high priestess. Too loud. She probably thought she was haggling in a market in Burundi, thought Tina. "Did you make sure that was halal, Stella? We definitely can't eat just about anything without making sure we're not offending the sensibility of anybody. Did you make sure they electrocuted the animal before slaughtering her?"

"We're all civilized, dears," smiled Stella widely. Her dress was violet, so were her gums, Tina thought."Trust me, we made sure. The salt was even kosher though I couldn't see a Jew here."

"Oh no, you know, I'm vegetarian, my dear," squeaked the designer. The first time I came face to face to a poof who obviously had a facelift, thought Tina.

"Oh, Twinkle dear, of course, I did a special salad just for you." When Stella tries to act sophisticated, she comes out looking like a gym receptionist, Tina thought. "How could I forget your delicate tastes?"

The cadaver called Twinkle sighed self-importantly. Tina noted half the face was less taut than the other. Probably not fully-paid, she decided. The surgeon will pull tighter the other side on a later date after clearing the check.

"That reminds me, I don't like your shirt, honey," Stella said to Twinkle, grimacing as she looked at his multi-colored shirt."It makes you look darker."

"And what's wrong with being dark, may I ask?" The high priestess no longer sounded like haggling in an African hinterland flea market but picking a brawl in a bikers bar instead."Please, somebody may just have ears around here you know & could hear your crude disrespect to a civilized human sensibility here. Do you mean I have no right to be here just because I am dark & worse, definitely black?"

Stella was stunned for a second but she immediately recovered & assumed post-haste her sophisticated smile which made her look like a chastened gym receptionist, Tina thought. "Honey, you know I won't ever think anything bad about you. I apologize if you heard it dark. I said Twinkle looked like a park because of the prints."

"Park?" The fat woman still tried to look incredulous but Tina could see her ears erect & almost clapping with glee. She was obviously fishing for the mother lode: apology. She knew an apology for whatever was the modern key to what pass as civilization in the twilight days of Western civilization.

"I'm offended, Stella," The cadaver wasn't about to be eclipsed by the fat high priestess."I'm a designer of note & you mean I can't distinguish a park from a shirt? Is that because I'm just a fag? I never thought I still could be a victim of homophobia in liberal Beverly Hills."

Tina looked at Stella. Stella always tried to look calm, & the usual sign she was ever agitated was when her false eyelashes started quivering & detaching themselves from the edges. "Homophobia? I apologize, Twinkle dear. You know how a good champagne gives me a buzz sometimes"

Her famous false eyelash now was askew.

"Park, not dark? I thought it was fart," the husband suddenly barked. Tina could see the closet queen was drunk. He must have lost patience maintaining a straight face, she thought. She was late for an hour so he must have been suffering silently for an hour already.

"You mean, I smell like a fart, you moron? Apologize or I'll report you're violating my human rights."

"Shut up, you ugly cow. You not only smell but you look like a fart." He started standing to attack the black woman but Stella immediately pulled his husband back to his seat.

"Come on now, silence everybody. Let's toss to Low Carbon Emission! Long live, Low Carbon Emission "

That did the trick. They automatically assumed a serious look & all raised their glasses. " Long live, Low Carbon Emission!" they chorused before sipping their glasses.

"But you've lit so many chandeliers, Stella." the Frenchwonan chirped." Your carbon is shooting through the roof."

Without a word, Stella ran to put out all the lights except for a ceiling droplight in a corner.

"Wow, we have orgy now?" The Frenchwoman giddily gasped. "Any actor coming?"

"What you need actors for? You from the Alps? Girl to girl is hot right now, baby," the fat black woman sidled beside the Frenchwoman who promptly pushed her away then ran to sit besides Tina.

"You, racist French fries. You mean you reject me just because of my skin color? I can't believe racism still rears its head in the 21st century."

"It's too dark, I can't see her. Where is she?" asked the cadaver who was nearsighted. He was groping haphazardly & he jumped when the closet husband slapped his hand.

"I thought so, you dimmed all the lights so you won't have to see me, you racist pigs! You will all go to hell for being bigots!"

Stella didn't waste a second, she ran like an automaton & all the lights returned. Then she approached the fat woman and whispered almost conspiratorially: "Hell? I thought you're atheist."

"I'm my Mother's daughter, you ho. She's a pastor. Studies showed that in moments of extreme agitation all the imprints lefts by our parents would resurface even if you've all but civilized yourself to the max. I grew up hearing about hell & brimstone, you see."

"Is that so?"

"Yes, I presented a paper on that in the last International Lawyers' League Conference in Belarus. They gave me a standing ovation for ten minutes. I brought my mother, she cried & told me it was good she didn't abort me."

Tina overheard that. She was now bored on top of being depressed, she wanted to be naughty. "Let's toss to Abortion. Long live, Abortion!"

"I'm offended." The cadaver suddenly stood up looking deeply offended that he looked decomposed, Tina thought."Why should you toss about abortion when you know I can never have one. Just because I'm a fag? My God, I never thought I can still be a victim of heartless homophobia in liberal Beverly Hills."

"Don't worry, baby, you should be thankful you don't worry about pregnancy," the Frenchwoman cooed.

The cadaver calmed down. "Really?" But then changed his mind: "I'm offended even more, you menopausal baguette. You're insulting me just because I could never have pregnancy. Is it my fault if I was born without a uterus? My God, I never thought I could still be a victim of criminal homophobia in liberal Beverly Hills." Then screamed. Like a butchered pig, Tina thought.

Stella immediately hugged him."Poor Twinkle. I apologize if you were offended. We know you're just a sweet soul, we won't hurt you, dear."

The eyes of Twinkle twinkled like stars as if nothing happened.

"Magnifique!" Amused, the Frenchwoman raised her glass still half-filled with champagne. Her armpits were dark, Tina thought." Now everybody is happy & gay!"

"My dear, don't use that... word!" Immediately, the eyes of the poof were glaring. His facial skin were so stretched Tina feared it would rip. "That's a big no-no in civilized society. All men are equal."

The Frenchwoman was confused. "What word? Not everybody happy?"

"The other one." Twinkle growled. Like a cat, Tina thought.

The Frenchwoman finally got it & she smiled."Ok, we don't use that word. Everything clear, white as snow, nothing is black."

"Hey, French fries, don't use that word in polite society," tweeted the black woman.

"What?" Now, the Frenchwoman started showing signs of confusion. There were beads of sweat in her forehead & her thick pancake were excavating, Tina saw.

"They don't teach you intelligence in France? All people are equal... why emphasize white? Why emphasize b-b-b...?"

Tina was naughty when she's not happy. She just lost the love of her life tonight and she had to put up with all these immigrants from the Republic of Dumpster. She intoned as if in a nursery rhyme: "I can see it but I don't. I can smell it but I don't. I can hear it, but I don't. I can say it but I won't"

"Well, at least, it's not the government that's telling you not to use your senses, dear." Stella knew the naughty streak of Tina.

"Well, at least, I elected them?" Tina downed her glass. She had no interest for any theoretical hairpulling tonight. Does it matter?

"But they don't have class, honey," Stella loved discussions like this, though. Her ultimate compensatory self-affirmation, Tina always thought. " We are higher level... above it all. Greek gods in the clouds, if I may say so. People are suckers anyway. Fashion arbiters come from slums so you wonder where did their taste come from. Does it matter? Because we claim they have good taste anyway. It's their fault they were not us. Because we can! We can!"

Then as if a belated coda came the shriek. "I definitely didn't come from the slums, you vulva," Twinkle suddenly stood with arms akimbo, glaring at Stella. "For your information, we had our own trailer. My God, just because I'm a fag of fashion, you're belittling me as if I didn't know you were a cowhand..."

He never finished. Suddenly, the closet husband stood up & roughly grasped the collar of his printed shirt. Without a word, he pulled the shrieking queen all the way to the front door & told the black doorman to throw him outside. Then he turned back & looked gravely at the remaining four women. He was trying to look menacing like a Mafia boss, thought Tina, but he's not fooling her, she knew he was a closet queen. He didn't have to say a word, the Frenchwoman & the black woman promptly got out silently, Stella climbed up the stairs but Tina remained cool, silently debating if she'd invite him instead to teach him how to manicure properly his dead fingernails. She was having her naughty moments after putting up with those low-lifes. Fate just snatched her love, then she let her suffer listening to this garbage. Very unfair...

She hummed a tune as she gyrated her hips while she looked seductively at the closet queen with the Mafia look. Living without you, I couldn't live! Wasn't that a song by those Irish poofs U2? Why were all these songs popping all over her head? Were they angels singing? Angels? Will she die now? What's that sound?

Her cellphone was ringing. The caller ID told her it was Tony.


"Honey, my parents will sleep in the house tonight, theirs got burned down. They're waiting for you."

Of course, she was wrong, he was not in the motel! That was not his car. And he was waiting for her in their house all along! And her parents-in-law (aherm!) were there waiting for her.

Now she was sure it was an angel she heard singing.

January 20, 2012 Paris

Hsu looked at his caller ID. It was his godfather from Hongkong.

"Buy as much shorts against French debt that you can. If you want to be really rich, that is."

Hsu was not a professional economist but he knew enough just so he could grow and safeguard his portfolio. He knew right from the start that the Greek economy was too small to really destroy the Eurozone. The French economy has been a concern even in the early part of the crisis but everybody was reluctant to dither with its rating for fear of spooking further the markets. The bloodbath could be massive. However, if you were accurate with the timing, really great fortunes could be made from somebody else's misery.

"Not after the elections?"

"It would be too late, do it now!"

January 20, 2012 Malibu

Of course, Herman Schonberg understood what happened. The external hard drive was offered to him for $2 billion but they wanted cash. He just instructed his accountant in Zurich to launder the amount when he learned somebody from Hongkong bought it for twice the amount. He knew Herbert's phobia. Herbert loved to talk about the time when his puke all went straight into the mouth of a closet classmate who tried to French kiss him after a drinking spree in college. "Bang shot!" Herbert would say.

He knew he has lost the guy as a friend. But he calculated Herbert would keep his secret in LA. He didn't bother ruminating about what the Hongkong guy intended to do, he knew he'll know soon enough.

Of course, he had other secrets. He didn't get to where he was by being prudent with an immaculate closet. Far, far too many secrets. Now it's out, he's gay, but things were not as simple as that. The last people he would hang out with were gays. Like Herbert, he also got clinical homophobia. Like Herbert, he developed nausea, even vomiting, in the mere presence of other gays.

January 21, 2012 9:55 AM, Hong Kong- Beijing Time, South China Sea

Commander Albert Hageman was contented with life. As a commanding officer of a destroyer that ensured American power was felt in the narrow seas between continental Asia & the rim archipelagos, he was glad he was instrumental in the dominant might of his country. All the right things were going for him. He's always away from his wife. The repeal of the recent "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" crap really unleashed his full potential as a military man. Only two years left before his retirement so he better make the most out of it. There were so many handsome personnel in his ship and he felt less and less inhibited to turn it into his own floating pleasure palace.

He moaned freely as the blonde, 6'4" enlisted man drilled ever deeper. He could feel alive in his veins the boiling testosterone of the warriors of the Sacred Band of Thebes of long ago.

"Yes, harder! More!"

Suddenly the impertinent shriek of an alarm ripped thru the pleasure moans in his quarters. Code red.

Damn! Wrong timing!He tapped caressingly the enlisted man on the shoulders to stop.

"I- I can't..."

He smiled & roughened up sweetly the boy's hair. "What do you mean you can't? We'll continue later on, silly boy!"

There was alarm in the boy's face."It's stuck!"

Then he finally caught on. He's heard of vaginismus before but, to his growing alarm, apparently his spastic anal sphincter also knew the trick.

The door suddenly swung open & his deputy rushed in panicking.

"Sir, a Chinese warship..." Then he saw his officer straddled by the nude enlisted boy. His palm immediately went up to his agape mouth while the widened white of his eyes almost made him look like an owl.Should he laugh? Should he cry?

Commander Hageman had no choice. He was joined to the boy & so be it. He was a professional. So the Chinese commander expertly watching the American destroyer's bridge thru his binoculars was beside himself at what he saw: a nude boy carrying a nude old man, both facing & embracing each other but joined at the waist, the older man's legs crossed and hooked around the boy's naked buttocks. He could see half of the boy's organ was still stuck in the old man's asshole.

The impaled old man, from his lofty perch, started shouting orders to the soldiers who were obviously struggling to keep a straight face. He was the American commander.

Next: Chapter 8

Mountains - Biffy Clyro (acoustic)

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

THE BEATEN GENERATION: The Dick Principle (Chapter 6)

by Dick & Poli Tico

NOTE: The quotations were culled from current headlines but the novel was written last year yet. I noted some current events mirror some scenes in the novel, I credit that to my informed imagination. You'll notice I withheld a two-paragraph section, it will appear AFTER the Presidential elections in France. I wrote it last year but apparently I was accurate in guessing the protagonists. France is supposed to be where the Great Fall begins because of that election, not Greece, & I don't want to besmirch the candidates before the elections due to my overactive imagination. This novel is followed by my French friends but they support different candidates. Lol. Another thing: I invoked literary license: the Greek government is headed by a Prime Minister but I made him a President instead. I introduced new literary devices here: the multilingual quotations which are a little novel by themselves. I'll introduce a new one today: relating events that will occur in the future in the present time just to remove the growing impression they are the climax of the story (though I withheld a big part due to abovementioned temporary self-regulation). I call it "counter-climactic jump back" (to prevent my friends from asking the ending, I anticipated that). Something more surprising is in store at the end. This novel is the first of "The Beaten Generation" series featuring Tina Ford. Yes, like Mr. Ripley of Patricia Highsmith, she will not die. Captured? Let's see, little suspense. I'm preparing the next one.

Chapter 6: Still More Tales of Highly-evolved Has-beens

“ ...Vous nous ramenez jour après jour à ces idéologies européennes qui ont donné naissance aux camps de concentration...Est-ce que vous considérez que le nazisme était une civilisation ? Est-ce que vous pensez que ce type de pensées-là ne risque pas de nous conduire à ce que nous avons connu avec les camps de concentration?"
Serge Letchimy, French Deputy, Martinique

"Oh I insulted the Queen. How very dare I. #growup"
Matt Zarb-Cousin, secretary, Young Fabians

"L'UE chiede di agire"
Elsa Fornero, Minister of Labor, Italy

"Ik ben geil!"
a horny Dutch

January 20, 2012 Paris, Orly Airport

Hsu liked to call it a "happy coincidence". Whenever homosexuals became very prominent in any civilization, be it in Biblical Sodom, in ancient Greece or in Imperial Rome, that civilization was due for substitution. He was sure the present one which arose from the ashes of the Roman Empire was in for a correction.

He has always been fascinated by the patterns & cycles of nature. Science is nothing but discovering and deciphering those patterns & cycles, and any serious reader of Western history won't miss the signs, Hsu thought. There was no mistaking it, the time of China has come. Its consistent rise was coming at a time when the West was steadily disintegrating. The Western media was filled with bleak reports on the effects of the depression which started lashing at financial markets since 2008. But he thought that was the lesser problem, they were barking at a mere symptom. They preferred not to look at the underlying general unraveling of the system itself. The West simply had no more way of growing competitively & has become an arrogant dinosaur due for extinction. There's a common thread in the fall of civilizations- hubris. When one has his nose in the air, he couldn't see clearly the ground shifting.

He was curious about a recurring theme in Western history: the greater the level of influence of homosexuals in an imperial society, the nearer the downfall of that society. He thought it must be really rotten behind the facade to offer no resistance to the dregs. In that society, everything has been reduced into a game of facades. He suddenly thought of a drag queen. Beautiful & flashy outside but fake & depressed inside. He thought of the many muscular gays clogging the gyms whenever he entered one in the West. Who were they kidding? Then the false glitter of Hollywood! The coopted media events to subliminally control the thoughts of the gullible! All contrived facades. It amused him to discover homosexuals were at the forefront of the current facades of the West.

They are the indicators, he thought.

He's a Buddhist, no longer an atheist, but he was well-read about the Judeo-Christian roots of the adversary. He has been a reluctant admirer, but lately, only one word glimmered in his mind. No, not Sodom. Thebes!

January 20, 2012 Los Angeles

He often read about the presumed prosperity of the decade before the depression of 2008. He didn't quite agree. How about mere impression of prosperity due to easy money flying all around? In short, debts.

Herbert Caldwell II, assessed by Fortune Magazine to be worth $21 billion last year, knew all about money. He knew it took a special kind of people to earn the big money needed to feed the delusion of the politicians. Finance is not one plus one equals two. One plus one could be a million if the right sentiments were at hand. But it required an ideal setup hermetically sealed from the ignoramuses to attain that. Especially the dense political types who love dipping their hands where they had no business doing so.

When the past Greek Socialist Party politicians discovered the financial connections of some monks with the then reigning Conservatives, they tried to score a political point to use in the approaching elections. More often than not, money grew because some people have the savvy, not because of greed. The monks were only trying to raise money to save neglected monasteries, which the then Greek government facilitated by twisting some rules along the way. Another government of another political party would have done so if they were in power. But reason is often not a priority in politics, especially in Greece, where Western democracy, most have forgotten, was born. The Socialists won because of the ensuing scandal, but they drove Greece instead to the abyss. The new Greek President tried to drive the final nail on his political enemies by revealing the financial holes they left behind at a time when financial markets worldwide were being pummeled after the US subprime debacle. He was blissfully innocent of the ramifications of his grandstanding stupidity, Herbert concluded with contempt. Instead of diving in responsibly to contain the ripples, the Greek President announced it to the world & spooked all the already rattled creditors not only of Greece but all the deadbeats of the Euro zone particularly the laid-back Southern part. Now they were all standing over quicksand. High finance would be unnerved when one plus one become two. It would go crazy if they become, like in the case of Greece, negative two.

Herbert sighed. It's more convenient to analyze other people's financial troubles, he thought. It pained him to do so with those of his own country.

He was living right in the financial sinkhole of the US. California.

Paul, his primary financial consultant, mentioned something yesterday which baffled him. He was not particularly superstitious, neither was Paul, but a battle-tested intuition didn't discount anything. After giving him his daily appraisal of the various financial markets, Paul suddenly blurted: "Isn't it curious that in all the big states where gays congregate, those places are heavily indebted? I'm toying with developing a Financial Congregated-Gay Risk Index- financial uncertainty proportionally increases the bigger the congregated gay population of an area is."

"I know they are really a negligible market contrary to their propaganda pretensions to gain leverage, but I should assume they were creating value-added services?"

"That's my presumption too. There must be more to it. There must be already a widening sinkhole in there to tolerate all those gays in the first place. Gays are probably indicators of some not yet evident degradation somewhere."


"Social, political. Intellectual. Anything."

"Like California?"

"Especially California. Much of the money lost in California were scooped up by unions. I wonder if similar forces were at work behind the politicized gay movement too. Very likely, I think."

"The good old Leftists?"

"Most of the gays aren't political. Out of desperation they would just cling to anybody who could provide them hope, attention. I wonder how many really wanted to get married. Nobody even thought of marrying two decades ago. Or how many are foolish enough to even believe they really will ever be treated like any normal boy? Just the feeling of being organized will give them the false sense of empowerment, I think. That's an old leftist tactic. Identify a need, organize a sector, convince them they need it, create the conflicts to rattle the hated society & you have captive fodders for your cannon for your bigger agenda.''

"Which is?"

"I'm a Catholic & gays have the best treatments in Catholic countries. I've gone around. Effeminate gays could be seen on TV from Brazil to Italy for decades. My gay friends said they really have the best sex in Catholic countries. Gays have far better acceptance in Mexico, Brazil, Italy than in America. But why was the Pope so vilified by Leftist-led gay propaganda? It's not enough, true, but no need to encourage impossible expectations. They created this impossible wedge called gay marriage which they know the Church could never give because it would be changing its teachings just to pander to a special few. The impossibility works for them because that will always disappoint gays, making them more pliant for their intended role... pawns to erode religion which is the prime obstacle to the old grand leftist design to social engineer society. "

"I'm familiar with the technique. Everything decided at the top, the flock just have to follow thinking it was for their own good, innocent of the fact they are being used for something else. Just like the California peace officers. They just let the union fight for them as long as they get the money, innocent that the city would be bankrupt in time because of them. Just a socialist corruption of a market competitive maneuver, only it doesn't intend to destroy business competition but a hated society itself."

"Destruction is sought to build their delusion over it. Millions have been killed over that delusion & nowhere near their objective. In their last census, 71% of the British still believe in a Christian god. And with the coming economic step-down in the West, expect people to return to their religion again. After flirting with a brief prosperity & liberalism, the down and out Spaniards flocked to see the Pope. Evangelicals are even now suddenly sprouting in France. They believe America is game because of its high rate of believers. But they will have to fight forever. And gays are reliable bullets as long as somebody promised to fight for them for whatever, and that is forever because they will always be gay."

"Well they could test their religion-free dogmas in the small countries of Eastern Europe. I can't see any utopias there now. The last time I looked, I didn't even want to invest." The trademark Herbert Caldwell guffaw exploded."That reminds me of these militants. Funny they like to think of themselves as intellectuals but I don't seem to see them around where the real intellects are."

"Part of the delusion. That they have more abstract thinking than anybody to sustain their delusions. More compensatory than anything. After all, more ego boost to be seen fighting society than accept your own demons. Like you always say, pretending to be intellectuals to justify to themselves why they are big losers. "

Again, a series of guffaws exploded. "Oh, that's a mouthful. You should be a politician. Republican now?"

"Still nominally a Democrat but it's more a tradition, just because my father was an immigrant. But most Latinos aren't necessarily voting Democrats anymore. I myself don't want to paint myself in a box. That old categorizing is outdated. I am against war but I believe in free markets like you."

"You don't believe in gay marriage?"

"I don't think you have to call it as such. Science uses specific terms for everything just to keep order. Same sex union shouldn't be a special case. It should have its own clear terminology. No need to muddle the neat order just because of capricious politics. You want gays to be treated like everybody else but you push them to be a special case instead, inviting resistance & setting him up for possible backlash in the process. Gays could be cute but you turned them into villains. You need goodwill, no need to be smart-aleck."

"I agree. Gays will be gays forever anyway. A sense of balance & reality have been lost somewhere."

"Balance & reality are not part of the delusion. I've gone to Holland. They had had gay marriage there for ten years. But gays there are treated like any other gays in other educated countries. Educated people anywhere won't hassle you as long as you don't make yourself a nuisance. They will still pummel you if you do. But gays in their daily lives are better treated in Brazil or Thailand where they don't allow gay marriage. Treated like other normal boys? Not by a long shot. Heterosexual boys simply have their own culture & gays are out of place there, no matter what their delusions would say. All the political revolutions & hallucinations in the world simply won't change that."

"Man couldn't be guinea pigs to delusions. But you seem to know a lot about gays..."

"Latinos are good Catholics. We grow up treating gays like human beings. Basic Christian teaching. But if you want my opinion, I also know about feminists who'll never become a man so they will shrivel up alone because their husbands will rather put up with a younger one than with their rigid political prescriptions, not to mention their wrinkles, of course."

Herbert was allergic to the topic of feminism. He had the same wife for 50 years. "I never thought you were religious..."

"I returned to it. It filled a void my own delusions couldn't fill."

Herbert himself was agnostic but he respected the believers, he found them to give stability to the American heartland. They were the bedrock why America became the wealthiest country on earth & it was not a coincidence that the floundering parts were where those who mock them lived. Like floundering California. More often than not, those he found mocking them were those who needed religion to straighten themselves up in the first place.

His underlings knew Herbert Caldwell II was homophobic. Not the political kind but the clinical one. He had real pathologic phobia on gays. He developed nausea, even vomiting, just in the presence of one. All the 100,000 employees working in his business concerns were confirmed heterosexuals (complete with background checks) as a matter of necessity. All his close business contacts were already aware of his "strictness". They always sent their most heterosexual emissaries when dealing with Herbert Caldwell II. But he didn't hate gays: he built a foundation that gave scholarships to deserving gay students. But as a preventive measure, he never got to meet anyone of them.

"Regarding your Financial Congregated-Gay Risk Index...Make a formal report on that one. I mean exhaustive. We don't want to be caught flat-footed now, do we?"

Then he remembered something. "Isn't Herman Schonberg gay?" he suddenly asked.

"The film mogul? As far as I know, he has a wife. I heard stories but..."

Of course, Herbert knew the truth. He just got the confirmation that morning. He was just testing the reaction of Paul. Herbert Caldwell II ultimately knew everything.

"I have my usual get-together with Herman tomorrow," he said gravely.

That was yesterday. He came early for their meeting. He would have liked to cancel it but he knew he had to hold the line this last time around. He wanted to clear some things first before finally cutting off forever. He knew Herman was on his way in his sports car. Let Herman Schonberg have his last dramatic entrance.

He took two 500 mg. capsules of Plasil (Metoclopramide, anti-vomiting) as precaution.

Then he remembered his last question to Paul yesterday. "Your father was not a police or fireman?"

"No, he was a laborer. He was never used as an unwitting pawn to any delusion."

Was it a concidence that the Thebans were in California?

January 20, 2012 Paris

When he arrived in Paris that morning from Hongkong, Hsu immediately saw a bunch of sashaying queens but he didn't have the slightest inkling of the great cataclysm that would befall his favorite European city just a few months later.

Everybody was expecting Greece would be the trigger. Surprisingly (to the delight of the Britons before the backdraft reached them two years later), France will turn out to be the epicenter of the Great Financial Fall of 2012. Did anybody even believe French democracy was forever? On his way from the airport, as Hsu watched from the taxi window the noisy electoral supporters loiter the streets of Paris, never did it cross his mind that it would only take one day for the new dictator to take over the whole country just a few months after the coming Presidential elections.


The new French dictator Alain Belmondo will adopt the same mocking tone on his initial speech: "My fellow French who all turned into folles! You didn't even give me the pleasure of sweating a bit in becoming a dictateur. I never thought becoming a dictator could be so boring! What fraternite? It's sororite! You are all Franggots!"

Nobody will understand the word. All the educated French who knew English will all evacuate themselves after the cluster bomb explosion so those left behind will never know the etymology of the word. Moreover it will be pronounced with a silent "ts". But the French will find it cute so they will start calling themselves "Les frangots".

By 2015, Paris will be called the "Pyongyang of Europe" because of its dramatic funerals. They will choose the most beautiful girls from around the country & train them to the techniques of the correct way of wailing a la Pyongyang during state funerals as meticulous as they would teach chefs in French cooking schools. By 2011, in a poll taken by Lonely Planet, French cooking was already judged only the tenth in terms of preference among a sample of travellers, way below Vietnamese & Italian. It will be the thirtieth most preferred by 2015 so somebody will have the practical idea to just apply the precise vintage cooking techniques to the proper way of wailing a la Pyongyang: ... Now, mademoiselle, think of an onion, punch it, cut it brusquely then imagine the vapors stinging your eyes, then wail...

Today, Hsu was still unaware of those future events. He was in Paris as representative of the Chinese government on a conference called "Final Evolution of Man". He never bothered to read the documents emailed to him. He has become jaded from this kinds of conferences. He sensed he won't have to put up for long.

He met at the hotel lobby some of the participants of the event. Same faces, he thought. It will start the next day yet but already, an effeminate 60-year old white-haired man from Spain was speaking as if declaiming on a podium, "... I have already been married to my husband for twenty years but our evolution is not yet finished because there is no real equality in two men being married to each other if they excluded women from their sexual lives. In order to have final equality, we must all be bisexuals, & through time, if we are really serious in becoming equal to each other, then we will be equal. We were still unable to get it up with women but we expect to do so when we reach the age of 70 or 80. Hopefully, before we die. Everybody can do that if we can control politically the factors that could condition & reprogram society, & ultimately, man, even his sexuality. We should submit to the programs of modern evolutionary imperatives..."

Hsu snorted. I'm already normal now, why should I want to be abnormal just to be equal with this marginalised delusional fag? Just as he thought, another pretentiously intellectual wacko gathering. The Chinese have done more to experiment with equality, killing millions in the process, but they have long ago outgrown it, it was just a futile exercise in stoking man's natural crab mentality. Western intellectuals refused to learn from China's experience thinking they were always of a higher breed, defeating their hypocritic egalitarian pretentions right at the gate. They refused to heed the signs around them... well, let them self-destruct with their delusions. It's too easy to pretend superiority when one is compensating for an unacceptable reality. Yes, he thought, economics & politics go hand in hand... weaken one & you weaken both. Who would bother listening to these idiots if they came from Bhutan? Well, that's their future. China helped the unfortunate but they shouldn't be the reason to weigh down the whole society. The dregs shouldn't blackmail morality & civilization. This Spaniard probably thought the final evolution of man is for everybody to be mutated into a wasp, he concluded. But no, you can't even program a wasp. The delusional Spanish model was a human clay.

The next day after France will have become a dictatorship, Spain will likewise turn into one. In ten minutes. No casualty whatsoever. After the unemployment will have hit 50%, the people will collectively decide as if by divine national epiphany that they should just stop pretending they were "modern" once & for all. They will chase the pretentious with bulls. They were rulers of the world when they were supposedly backwards, one smart-aleck unemployed garbageman will say to anybody who would listen to him at Puerta del Sol. They will declare a National Day of Siesta, then immediately following it, a National Week of Fiesta. The new dictator will be called Franco Segundo, in honor of the last dictator General Franco. He was the garbageman.

There will be heavy betting among bookies in London that the other Latin deadbeat, Italy, will fall within 5 minutes. Not advisable to underestimate Italian food, they will all be wrong.

January 20, 2012 Los Angeles

Tina held her breath. She just drove past the needle-like Schonberg Thebes Tower. She thought it was the car of Tony which turned left inside a courtyard just across the road. Sweet Dreams Motel.

January 20, 2012 Los Angeles

Herman Schonberg strode majestically into the room. He just came from a month-long vacation in his island near Madagascar & his teeth were sparkling bulbs over his deep-tan as he smiled widely when he saw his old friend. Herbert was the 12th, but Herman was the 22nd richest man in America &, between them, they have a net value bigger than that of a middle-income South American country. They've been close friends since they started their "Clash of the Titans games" five years ago. Their differences in politics were no obstacle to their friendship. Brothers, they started calling themselves.

Then yesterday, Herbert received the package. It contained an external hard drive containing about a hundred videos showing Herman having sex with various actors.

When he clasped the offered hands of Herman, Herbert knew the Plasil was useless. He could feel his stomach upwelling. The next thing he knew, his breakfast was all over the white suit of his erstwhile friend.

Next: Chapter 7

Crossfire- Brandon Flowers