Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Last Resort

I'm having all kinds of problems finding place to start writing about Santa Cruz. I excuse myself because this is a traumatic era and my keyboard has a shift key that's sort of sticking and I'm troubled because of intestinal worms and possible mental decay and a long list of other life details to draw my attention from this project. I am not leaving Guatemala until this project has a substantial progress. It's a life goal and involves dramatizing something that is rarely understood. But not in the normal Oggy fashion, which I'm about to delve into, but in a Russia style, embracing the vast opera, the homeless cast of dereliction and emotional refugees, detailing the dirt beneath their nails, the meek expressions they have, all evidence of a broken spirit. Some were not adult children, some had surrendered to circumstance. Some were passing through and some were students of humanity but had elements of all the above. I considered writing the entire thing as a first person recollection, an indictment of myself and my past to shove it down the throats of the reader, brutalize and humiliate them, pull no punches in my attempt to injure those whose stultifying ignorance made them look like wounded cows next to an electric fence with their mouths gaping and chewing cud with flies nesting near their eyes while my brethren were led to slaughter. Motherfucking impotent cunts, my disdain has no words and that's the problem. Because I witnessed the homeless holocaust and smug elite pissed on their graves with no knowledge of anything except their own hidden shame, I have to find better words. I'm dealing with bread dead people, horses without eyes plodding toward some mystical carrot and my ordinary essays will not have an impact with that kind of idiot. I need to step up the game beyond anything I've written before because I don't want to preach to the choir; I want to burn the church down. Metaphorically, of course.

How does one do that? And there are so many anecdotes that I've reflected on in misery and self-loathing nostalgia. I will share one with you in order to move ahead with this madness.


Oggy pushed his flat tire broken electro-bicycle up the brick sidewalk. The Robocops were abundant and followed him on account of his fitting the profile of undesirable, penniless, hairy, dirty, smelly. This is the future, although it really took place in the past. Understand? There were no robotic police, but there will be and there are no electro-bicycles but there will be and the homeless will have the broken ones, the discarded ones that have blown microchips that they hunt for in piles of leeching e-waste near the cancer neighborhoods that were established in order to efficiently care for the millions of dying...near the diabetic neighborhoods...and the obesity city. See, it's easier to divide neighborhoods according to disease in the future. This was all explained in your handbook.

Wait, I was having a flashback to a time that never happened. Where was I? Oggy was pushing the rueful electro-bike that had never worked properly and that's why Oggy was given it when a guy with prostate cancer died. And he's pushing it because the tires are flat. And the battery is dead and the solar charging mechanism has a fried component that Oggy believes he can find at the dump if only the guards will let him in. But they never do and now Oggy is going to the drum circle at the beach...and the Robocops are following him because they've been programmed to follow him. They are making small chat with him, "How are you? Nice day isn't it?" and all the while monitoring his heart rate and retina dilation for signs of illegal drug use.
"You motherfuckers," says Oggy. "you follow me and hinder me and disrespect my sovereignty. You're public servants and you fucks trod on my freedoms."
"Respectfully, sir, a report has been filed relating to your objections." the Robocop says in its mechanical voice.
"Piss on your report," says Oggy. "Piss on it. You see how many people were starving to death because the wheat fields in Central State are owned by China?"
"A Report has been...."
Oggy ignored the Robocop. The withered sun was a mere lightbulb behind a curtain in the cloud filled sky. Cloudy with a chance of Apocalypse, thought Oggy.

Oggy was not amused, his disdain was a constantly generating energy source. If only the city could harness his hatred to supply electricity then the forests might be spared, all the predictions had come true but the news sources had built their comedic propaganda multiplied until the news and the science fiction shows morphed into an unrecognizable soup of lies. 

Oggy bumped into a local nut, Tennyson, who was obsessed with Anna Highlight, the lead singer of Blonde Destiny.

"Anna performed Swollen Whiskers last night for the first time since The Summer of Sunshine tour in 2021." Tennyson hummed a few bars of Swollen Whiskers. Oggy hissed through his decaying teeth.

Oggy was accustomed to Tennyson's unsolicited information about Blonde Destiny. Tennyson believed he had been married to Anna Highlight at some point in the past, he believed they were spiritually connected, be believed she was equally in love with him. Oggy shivered as he recalled the week he spent underneath Tennyson's kitchen table a Anna Highlight altar...the cat shit, the unflushed toilet, the flickering lights, the tin foil hats and brain wave transmission devices. It had been horrible beyond words but because at that particular time Oggy had been avoiding the forest due to a Meth Empire bounty erroneously put on his head for crimes he had never committed. Oggy had met Tennyson at the daily meal at "Bibles and Bread" Oggy mentioned that he needed a place to sleep because the bounty, the Robocop patrols in the park, the drone patrols at the beach, the awful prisoner trains....the acid bath stench from the river..., it was complicated and Tennyson had said, "Well, you can stay at my place until Anna gets back from tour." Oggy had innocently thought Anna was really on tour and was going to return to Tennyson's cat shit-infested subsidized housing in the Autistic Neighborhood one day. This is obviously insane, looking back with perfect vision, but at the time Oggy had been relieved to find refuge even for a week or two, 'until the tour ended'. Now Oggy remembered the awful sinking of his heart when he realized what the truth was, like a kidnap victim knowing he'd be raped and murdered soon.

Oggy's electro-bike's rear tire seized up as the drive train locked because of a faulty impact sensor.
"God Is this cursed!" Oggy howled to the sky as he dragged the bike quickly away from Tennyson, who merely picked up his own step to keep up, all the time blabbering about Anna's tributes to him during the concert, none of which was true, all of which was a figment of Tennyson's Asperger imagination.

Oggy remembered the trials of pretending to be autistic in order to gain entrance to the neighborhood of lunatics to the south. While not as chaotic as the bi-polar neighborhood to the west, the autistic neighborhood was awful for someone in full possession of his emotions, and Oggy was hypersensitive so it was even more hellish. Oggy had been besieged on all sides by cat lovers and people with doll collections and there was a swing set at every street corner and Tennyson had insisted they play on the swings for five to ten minutes, extending the short walk into an all-day marathon. What did they care, Oggy speculated, they were autistic, wards of the state, kept like bunnies in a cage. Then the slow revelation that Tennyson was a high functioning mental case, the ritual to enter the house, the ritual to prepare for the ritual, the prayers to Anna, the songs to Anna, the ritual to sing the prayer songs to Anna...Oggy had begun to think the forest, with all the dangers of the Meth Mafia, was preferable. But his feet were nearly bleeding from that toxic hemp oil someone had rubbed between his toes. He had to sit down so the long rituals and sub-rituals were worth tolerating if it meant refuge. 
When they had finally entered the ruined waste of the apartment Oggy's suspicions were confirmed: there was no Anna, there was no security guard, there was no resemblance of habitation. There was only the creepy altar to Anna and the cat shit.

"No, we don't have running water because I'm suing the bureau of hydration due to how Anna was accused of abundant waste during the 2017 "Get Wet" tour where she had a water slide and...." droned the flat voice of Tennyson.

Oggy needed that water to clean the hemp oil off his feet...and he ended up using an old news paper...as long as he didn't throw it away but returned it to the pile of paper designated to clean up cat shit, although there was cat shit everywhere and tons of paper.

"Maybe I can help you around the house," Oggy suggested, and Tennyson said, "No, Anna doesn't need any help." as he threw a rotting banana into the paper recycling bin.


It was obvious a decade or two had passed since any kind of cleaning had been done, let alone an internationally famous rock musician had lived there. These things were obvious now and Oggy was trapped. The gates to the Autism neighborhood were locked at 8pm and he would have to dodge drone patrols and dig a ditch under the fence, maybe swim across the poisoned levee moat.

"You can sleep over there," said Tennyson pointing to a dog bed under Anna's altar. "But don't get too comfortable because Anna's coming home.. and she's gonna 'be sweet to my bunny love' he sang in a spine chilling impersonation of the pop star...a song Oggy recognized from a period of time when he was on a labor bus during the construction of that damn Olympic village and songs by Blonde Destiny had been played non-stop during the commute. It brought back horrible memories so Oggy was momentarily frozen on the sidewalk as he struggled to retrace his steps back to the present from a memory within a memory, a sub-memory regarding the labor bus and the dark-haired girl he'd had a crush on with the deformed ears, her personality was so kind, she had made friends with everyone and Oggy knew that he was not worthy of her because he wasn't loyal to the Olympic cause, and had even lied during the oath, and he was ashamed that the girl with the deformed ears was honest and pure and he was disloyal, within a primary memory of that evil 'bunny love' song that was playing on the labor bus and how Tennyson sang the same fucking song during his only week in his apartment...and now he was walking on the sidewalk with Tennyson and his broken Electro-bike. Or was he? Or was this another sub-memory within some other present time that he had drifted away from? His feet ached.

The few days he'd been trapped at Tennyson's were like a snail slowly being cut in half as it slithered down a razor blade, a sentence among lunatics, frightening, awful. Oggy could not escape, nor could he understand what anyone was talking about. Tennyson communicated to Anna's spirit using a tin foil hat and some used hologram equipment. It was not the effort that bothered Oggy, but the delusional belief that Tennyson could communicate with Anna Highlight, the manner in which he described these conversations were so depressing to Oggy because Tennyson was lonely and this delusion helped his loneliness but the descriptions could not help but reveal his underlying loneliness, this twisted fantasy was only partially embraced, Oggy could still see the hesitancy in Tennyson's eyes, the gestures that were mechanical...the tone of voice that betrayed his hidden sadness which was a model of all Man's sadness. And that's why it wasn't so easy for Oggy to escape that first week, because Tennyson was outwardly crazy, trying too hard to attract friends, desperate for companionship, but Oggy had seen beneath the fantasy and sympathized with Tennyson. Everyone was lonely in Affective disorder neighborhood and their manic fluctuations merely reminded Oggy of the troubled human mind, the fragile, fractured, wounded mind; a baby hardly opens his eyes and the assault started, the scars formed, the mind retreated to a safe refuge, like Tennyson's altar to a woman who had never met him, a woman he claimed he had married. 

The two moved down the sidewalk, Robocops watching them via the network of security cameras linked to the police headquarters, waiting for them to jaywalk or impede pedestrian traffic or spange. Oggy remotely recalled being diagnosed with something like autism or some spectrum disorder when he was younger, manic depression, bi polar disorder, he could remember the exact the terms and the tone of mystification in the doctor's voices, but he still maintained at the time that his sickness gave him insight that would otherwise be lost to humanity if he tried to medicate himself to normalcy. It was undeniable that even Tennyson's illness gave him a supernatural vision that if properly harnessed would aid mankind. Instead, Tennyson was quarantined and his vision allowed to fester. No wonder it decayed into a fixation of pop artists and decades old typographical errors in the newspaper. 

It was these old tortured newspapers that Tennyson claimed were under investigation for evidence predicting the future and confirming his spiritual connection to Ms. Highlight, and designated for use cleaning up cat shit, that Oggy first learned of the recorded history related to the increased oppression of the destitute, before the neighborhoods had been established, during a time when your disease did not designate you for an apartment in a certain area of the city. While Tennyson had ranted and lectured loudly about Anna's imminent return and minute details involving her concert tour, Oggy read the old newspapers, the paper papers, the physical papers that he'd only heard about in the reserved archives at the law library but because he refused to be subjected to the lice disinfection he could not see them in person. In Tennyson's filthy apartment he had years of newspapers available for research so he had examined them all and learned the history that would change everything.


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Man in the Van by Oggy Bleacher is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License.