Wednesday, February 1, 2012

THE BEATEN GENERATION: The Dick Principle (Chapter 5)

by Dick of All Dicks & Poli Tico

NOTE: This novel is fiction but all the Western characters with names, except for Tina Ford & Herbert Caldwell, were based on real people I came into contact with at some point, just satirized. However, all names used were pure invention. The story is provocative but very much unlike the usual hackneyed ones which are mainly designed to kowtow to certain intellectual constituencies. This one cuts across the board.

Chapter 5: More Tales of Highly-Evolved Has-Beens

"Dei partiti, come della politica, bisogna avere una visione non demoniaca"

Giorgio Napolitano, President, Italy

"It's like someone tying their own legs together & then complaining that some unseen but all-powerful deity is making them hop!"
Julie Burchill, British journalist

"Souriez, Alain, souriez"
Jacques Chirac to Alain Juppe

A nonchalant German

January 20, 2012 Los Angeles

If there was Greek democracy, why shouldn't there be Greek gods in the clouds?

The Hollywood Hills didn't exactly reach the clouds but he felt as powerful as a Greek god while he languidly looked down at the downtown skyline jutting disdainfully above the oblivious urban sprawl. He just made his decision, but unlike those made by the mythical Greek gods of ancient times, it will affect real lives. Whatever the consequences will most certainly be documented for posterity in real historical records, not just whimsical footnotes of any 21st century mythology. His fellow modern Greek gods have had too much leeway to play. Enough...

Herbert Caldwell II looked down at the Calendar interface of the open Android tablet in his hand. He will be meeting with the biggest Hollywood mogul later that day. Time to slay the Thebans, he thought.

January 20, 2012 Malibu

She was found dead by her housekeeper in the morning. She died in her sleep alone in the biggest & most luxurious room, the entire third floor, of the biggest beach house in Malibu.

"She has been living alone for ten years after divorcing her tenth husband." Patricia was sleek & matter-of-factly as usual, delivering the news to her best-friend as if she was presenting the latest ratings of her television programs to a roomful of advertisers. She looked younger than when Tina last saw her a month ago. She couldn't find the deep wrinkles in Patricia's forehead which she loved to count whenever they meet. The last time around, there were three really deep ones, now it gnawed at her that Patricia's forehead was smooth like a marble even when she smiled widely as she opened the door to welcome her a while ago. But really now, why should she be insecure? She was aging gracefully, no need for Doctors, thank you.

"Laura was a warrior woman," Patricia continued her matter-of-fact monotone about her dead mother." She really stuck with her principles up to the end... a woman should never be a slave to any man, she always would say. Nobody passed her strict standards... which every right-thinking woman should have, of course. She had five children but children shouldn't be a reason to stay married. They eventually all led broken lives & committed suicide except me... but you can't afford to cry, the fight for the rights of women must not be bothered by sentimental trivialities. Too bad she went insane after her tenth husband. Alone & insane... but proud. Officially, she was in seclusion, of course. The image of the saint of feminism should stay immaculate forever!"

Patricia had the same age as her but she dressed as if she was in her late twenties. She was wearing a simple printed dress but the neckline plunged to reveal the meaty foothills of two Marilyn Monroe breasts which Tina was sure (!) were silicon implants. When they last met a month ago, she was sure (!) she had the bigger breasts. Oh, she felt like spanking Patricia's plastic surgeon now. It's unfair that those with money could change their mediocre looks just like that. She feared if she returned next week, she'll look like the prodigal aunt of Patricia.

She noticed Patricia was waiting for her to say something. "I just hope I won't die as miserab... uhm, lonely as her!" she blurted with a start as if recovering from a bad nightmare. Tina was so happy the past few days that she was practically walking on clouds but Patricia's brand-new improvements today were starting to unnerve her. She came here so she could share her happiness to her "mourning" best friend but she could feel her red-manicured claws sharpening instead. She really wanted to prick those breasts with her long nails so they'd fizzle to their proper sizes. Then she noted Patricia's nose looked less like a beak today. So, Patricia just had a major overhaul! God! Life's injustices never cease. Suddenly, she wanted to cry.

Patricia was sharp. "Don't cry, she's already ninety, you know. Actually, she overshot her deadline long ago, bless her." Patricia sashayed daintily towards the bar counter. God, even her butt is bigger now, she bit her clenched fist as if wanting to smother a scream."What do you want?" Patricia turned to look at her sweetly. Were her eyes violet now? Weren't they black before?!!

She really needed something strong now. "Ah, you have... mao tai?"

Patricia smoothly tossed her long newly-blonde hair. The animal was brunette, for Chrissakes! "Hmm... I don't seem to know that! A new hot one?"

She felt triumphant, the plastic surgeon was helpless with Patricia's IQ. She coolly purred, savoring her superiority,"A Chinese wine. I want something different for my palate. European wines are so passé." She thought she sounded like Mae West there.

For a moment, she saw Patricia was confused. A Hollywood big-shot producer couldn't possibly be outclassed by the NGO types. These are beggars.

"I tasted it after a fashion show in Paris," Tina was glowing now."Carla Bruni told me it's cool so I tried it, it was indeed cool!" She never met Carla Bruni. She hated that whore. She tasted the cheap mao tai when it was served to her by a peasant on a field trip to China a decade ago.

"I bet Laura died without tasting it. She loved wines, you know. But she did eat all kinds of men." Patricia regained her competent air."She said, the attack against men should be relentless."

Suddenly Tina felt she was in unfamiliar territory. When she's happy, she was clueless where all the old reliable angst have gone."Yeah, men..." ... sure are delicious! What was she thinking?

"I'll tell you something funny. They tell me my programs are too gay-friendly. But who cares about gays anyway? They are only useful as insults to men, of course. What greater insult to a real man than to be told he's not a real man?"

Tina suddenly felt really protective of real men."They have to be insulted? For not being women?"

"They are all gay, Tina."

"Then don't mind them anymore, gays will be of no use to you." She thought, Tony was of use to her. She needed real men like Tony. Suddenly, her heart jumped at the thought Patricia was loveless for a year now after her husband left her. "Besides, I'm sure, the real men are not watching your shows anyway." She guessed Patricia never tried to understand men because she wanted them to fit her script anyway.

Patricia rushed to her & embraced her tightly. She hugged back, so the girl needed solace after all beneath the cool facade. Then she felt the right hand of Patricia mash her left breast. She jolted herself free.

Patricia laughed wryly. "The final revenge, you see? We don't need men! We have to rewrite the backward storyline handed to us. Gays repel each other but they were easily hoodwinked into believing they deserved each other. Do you really believe two thousand years of gays were so backward in being repelled with each other then only got wiser with their taste in the last 20 years? Desperate humans are basically suckers, they could fool themselves into anything just to escape the pain. In a way, one has to fool himself to be modern, you know that? Women should, just to maintain our self-respect. It's all in the mind, you see."

"Then why don't you just fool yourself into believing you are not really being oppressed instead of eating something which naturally revolts you?" In her loveless days, she could believe anything against the status quo. She was basically a provocateur. Unhappy people are anarchists. But she never really believed you could dupe humans forever, they will regain their senses at some point. Hubris just complicated everything. When the concerted actions against Apartheid & Communism succeeded, it was inevitable the redundant forces would eventually be directed internally because they were genies that wouldn't be easy to bottle up again, but she herself couldn't reconcile her democratic principles with a rule by committee which is unaccountable to anybody, just a bunch of arrogant individuals who had the gall to impose arbitrarily their idiosyncratic causes du jour on the world. What differentiated the Gestapo or even the Soviets from these overeager do-gooders? But she couldn't remember now her old self. She's fair when she's happy.

Well, she's no longer stupid, just happy!

Her girly grudges suddenly felt puny. Why should she be insecure with Patricia? Her husband just left her for his twenty-year old secretary. A boatful of plastic surgeons could never undo the gap. Well, Patricia thought her success as a big-shot producer would be enough to make her husband stay horny with her forever. Bless the men who have taste, the feminist in Tina resolved with finality.

Patricia was suddenly sobbing."Laura never gave up looking for a soulmate even during her last brief lucid moments. When I visited her last, she was still debating if it was worth it being so adversarial to the men of her life. As if she was always referring to an all-powerful script which enumerated the things she had to do to be recognized as a modern woman... and she followed them to the letter but it always ended up with her left alone. There were always those who would tell her they supported her, she did the right thing...she was the greatest Hollywood actress, after all, she should be the model for all oppressed women... but they were lonely women just like her, they would go home & she'd still be alone. Alone! God, how she hated being alone! In the end, she decided she was the one oppressing herself all along. I believe her insanity was her final salvation. She didn't want to grow old alone, Tina." A brief pause. Then: "Neither do I."

Tina almost jumped with glee, but she checked herself just in time. She triumphantly thought, "On the contrary I have found the love of my life", & her happiness overflowed, she felt as if she were floating on the clouds again. She actually felt pity for Patricia now. The new Patricia was surgically born not to assert she was the superwoman she strived to be all her life but simply just to attract a man who could save her from her own demons.

Gotcha! Winner? Nobody else, ladies & gentlemen... Tina!

January 20, 2012 Vallejo

Once more, Tony looked at the pile of smoldering embers. The house where he grew up.

"Sorry, son, the firefighters were stretched, they arrived too late," his father gently touched his shoulder. Antonio Calderon Senior was the General Manager of the city. Or more precisely, the walking City Hall of the city. What remained of the City Hall was his desk & that of his secretary. All the rest of the staff had to be terminated because the city simply had no money to pay them. The city's coffers were tied up to the pensions of policemen & firefighters whose unions fought hard to extract the most that they could for their wards. No money anymore for the usual trappings of a normal civilized city. The Fire Department had to be cut down half its size to save. It didn't save the house of the City Manager when the sudden fires came. Their neighbor's was, in the nick of time. Their burning roof just caved in when it was their turn to be hosed down.

"This couldn't be happening in America. We're not Africa!"

"Vallejo is not alone, just the worst off. Same story in the whole of California. The people's money is tied up just to pay the pensions of police & firefighters. Everybody just had to get the most pound of flesh that they could & the peacekeepers & firefighters all cleaned up. The city is practically just existing to pay their benefits."

"Some people could be selfish," her mother's eyes were swollen but were still wet hours after the start of the fire.

The fire chief nearby overheard them. He was a middle-aged rotund fellow who had a wounded-child look in his eyes as he approached the three. "Don't blame me. When I decided to become a fireman, all that inspired me was the thought of being a good fireman, the salary was farthest from my mind. We just let the union fight for our rightful share, as they termed it. I just received whatever they gave me."

Tony wanted to punch the hypocrite but he checked himself. No use crying over spilt milk. He heard of the money problems of California but living in the city provided enough distractions that he never really focused on it. Reality just hit home today. Hard.

"San Jose has the second highest per capita income in the country next to New York but is in the same boat," his father was trying to find solace in having a company in misery.

His childhood just blew up in smoke. His stamp collection. His baseball cards. He wanted to scream. It would have been easier if a dirty capitalist was involved, how he would have loved to explode his venom to his face. But all his weary eyes could see were ordinary-looking firemen who just got lucky. These assholes will probably take business class when they fly to Mexico City but there would really be no cathartic drama in screaming at them. Too small-time...

Images of burned industrialists' heads pulled up in stakes were still bobbing up & down in his mind when his Blackberry beeped. He immediately stepped away from the group then glanced at the little screen.

Sorry, but we can't meet again. That was the last time. I won't do it again, not with you, not with anybody. No more.


Then another beep. He opened the next message.

I love you, baby.


January 20, 2012 Los Angeles

Herbert silently watched the elegant man enter his sports car from the live feed relayed straight to his tablet.

Coming shortly, the clash of the Titans, he thought.

Next: Chapter 6

January was my Italian phase, dominated by Max Gazze, a cool singer whose natural artistry is a refreshing departure from the usual pretentiously "intense" arty types. From my last trip to London last year, I brought home a pile of records recommended by my friends but which I never found time to listen to. I finally caught up with the backlog. They were all good: The Maccabees, Tribes, Pulled Apart By Horses, Iceage, Frankie & the Heartstrings, Errors, etc. I discovered from the lot my favorite rock band today. Watch their Wembley DVD to get the full effects.

57 - Biffy Clyro

My girlfriend discovered this video & Brandon Flowers has become our favorite American act. His album "Flamingo" more than a year ago is currently the most played in our nest. Pure, music on its terms. We decided the song below will be the theme song of our wedding later this year.

Right Behind You - Brandon Flowers