Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Dear France,

Dear France,; As we wind down from our own Independence Day celebration, City Paper would
like to wish you all a happy Bastille Day. Each July 14, you celebrate
the day in 1789 when common folk took up arms to free political
prisoners and send a message to the monarchy, an action that sparked
the French Revolution and unfortunately led to many royals being
dragged from their homes and beheaded in the streets.
Certainly nothing like that would ever happen in the U.S. though.
You were suffering under extreme circumstances, like unending war that
left the country on the edge of bankruptcy; crippling national debt
despite high taxes; no localized trade or local economy due to French
industry being based overseas; and the conspicuous consumption of the
noble class, while the lower class suffered high unemployment and
rising food costs.
That’s, er, nothing like the U.S. today. 

    Columbia City Paper

Dear hitchhikers,
    Back when I was a kid in the pre-serial killer days, it was common to see a fella� with his thumb out, just hoping for an honest ride. Sure, you guys often looked like unwashed roadies for the Allman Brothers and reeked worse than the county dump. But that was part of the experience, my dad would say, as he pulled to the shoulder and motioned for you to hop in the station wagon.
    Sometimes you�d tell jokes and then ask for 10 bucks and sometimes you�d just sit brooding and silent in the back next to us kids. On occasion, you even had a scrawny, toothless woman with you, who�d ride up front and creep everyone out with her life�s story while you sat in the hatchback and secretly rolled joints. Yes, you were an American original.
    But, honestly, you�re not really that missed. 
    Columbia City Paper

    Dear little kid at bedtime at Grandma�s,
    Sorry your nightlight�s busted, but c�mon dude, it�s only one night in the dark. Alone. Everyone else will be just down that long, eerie hallway with all the creepy portraits of your dead ancestors staring from the walls. Your great uncle died in this very bedroom, come to think of it. Rabies, I believe. Was bitten by a rat while he slept in his bed and went raving mad. They had to lock him in here. Anyway, sleep tight. If you need anything, just yell, though we might not be able to hear you over the big thunderstorm that�s approaching.
    Columbia City Paper

Dear self help book,
    I recognize that you have a basic need to disseminate helpful information and I own my responsibility to that. However, after using the Self Checklist on page 42, I don�t believe it will puncture our Friend Bubble if I use you to prop up this wobbly computer table so I don�t spill my Scotch while I watch Russian porn online and quietly weep.
    Columbia City Paper

Dear sun,
It�s the same thing every summer. I spend the other 360 days of the year in a low-lit office building, so I have to use 90+ sun block at the beach and end up looking like a painted aboriginal warrior. �Damn, Dracula, you got enough of that stuff on?� passersby laugh and tease. But then they look ashamed for teasing when they pass again a few hours later and my sun blisters have already started to ooze. Back at work, they�ll often send me home as I�m too hideously burned for decent society. But, on the bright side, wearing a thong over the last few summers seems to have seared off that tattoo on my ass I�ve always kinda regretted.

Columbia City Paper 

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