Anthony’s Weiner

New York City Mayor Anthony Weiner. Get used to that title, because it’s a coming.
On one hand it’s an incredible comeback from a very embarrassing and public event. On the other hand it represents why we are all so frustrated with our government and their general inability to get anything accomplished.
Certainly you all remember that Weiner got caught sending multiple texts of various body parts to multiple women of various ages while living the life of a married congressman.
Hey, everyone makes mistakes. We all do flat out stupid things from time to time. Admitting to it and coming clean is the admirable thing to do and I applaud Weiner for doing so, if it weren’t solely for his own benefit.
His admission and apology are flawed because it coincides with him trying to do bigger things. That is not meant to be a pun, but it is literally impossible to talk about this without accidentally making a play on words.
He admitted that his “sexting” continued even after he was removed from office, with some evidence having surfaced from November of 2012. 8 months ago. About when his mayoral campaign started.
This is obviously self serving, but even if it wasn’t, here is my concern.
We have no one better.
This isn’t the mayor of Ottawa, Kansas (no offense Ottawa). This is New York City. The glowing beacon of the free world. Weiner is going to be the highest-ranking officer in the municipal government of New York City?
The reason we don’t have anyone better is multi-faceted, but quite simply no one of sound mind wants or can attain the job.
You must be a corruptible sociopath in order to scoot up the political ladder.
There are certainly people that get involved in politics to do good, but trying to get agendas accomplished comes with a price. Money makes our electoral process go round, which makes a career in politics very difficult without the support of large corporations. So our politicians compromise, over and over, watering down their bills and own morality.
The American public pays the price for “leaders” like Anthony Weiner, ones that have no ethical values. Decision makers that will fix one hole in their boat by making two more in another.
I do not believe in “trickle down economics”, but I do believe in “trickle down politics”, which may not actually be a term. But when the ultimate goal of our elected officials is to get re-elected and move up in the political system we are left with our collective elected voices muted and indecisive.
“In any moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing.” -Theodore Roosevelt
Damn straight, Teddy.

Trouble in Sac Town

THE END
Ham. Fucking Ham. I wish my problem really were just the rear end of a pig, but the reason I am laying in this puddle of garbage water outside of a shitty sandwich shop can really only be blamed on myself. I am an envelope salesman from northern Idaho and this big city isn’t for me. Sacramento was supposed to be the end, the “big score”. I was making money, selling some ‘lopes, and look at me now, laying broken in the state capitals worst restaurant alley. This is not where I should be. If I would have stayed at home, where I belong, my vanilla reality would have played out blissfully. But I stupidly wanted more.
I am Derrick Walker. My eyes closed.
THE BEGINNING
“Derrick Walker”
I stood up as I heard my name called, and gracefully walked towards the podium. I was sweating, of course I was a little nervous, but it was also just flat out hot. This would be the first and last time I would ever wear a gown. I extended my right arm to shake the giant outstretched hand in front of me, my left went to retrieve my diploma. An award. This would be the first and last time I would ever receive an award.
I went and sat back down. Next to me was the most beautiful girl in all of Lava Hot Springs Idaho, Della Wells. True, the two of us made up .5% of the entire population of Lava Hot Springs, so to be the most beautiful out of 400 is not an overwhelming compliment, but these were the only people I had ever known, and she was the world to me.
We had spent our entire childhood side by side, literally. Going to school together from kindergarten through graduation our class had been alphabetized by first and/or last name hundreds of times, and I always had one constant, Della.
Summer after 8th grade I finally worked up the courage to ask her out, summer after junior year we were each other’s first, and here we are tonight, together, diplomas in hand. What else could I possibly need?
I reached over and put my left hand on her thigh, she smiled as her right gently came down on top of it. This was the beginning for us. A real beginning.
Her uncle Raymond Wells owned a small apartment complex just off Boulder Drive, the main street. There were 9 units that had been cleverly nicknamed “Well’s Bells” after the AC/DC song “Hell’s Bells”. I am not sure if people call them that because they are hellish dwellings, or just because it has a ring to it. The unit certainly isn’t impressive, but I couldn’t be happier. Raymond gave us a pretty good deal, and month to month is perfect for us. We have 2 months saved up with no means to pay the third, but that is what being young and in love is about.
THE MIDDLE
“Bro”
I looked up from the classifieds to see my brother standing in the doorway.
“There is no job worth having in that paper.”
Harold, my brother, aka “The Ham”.
Harold was 6 years older than me and came back to Lava Hot Springs once a month or so, he never really explained why, or where he spent the rest of his time, and I quit asking him about it. It was just nice to have him home.
I pushed my empty cereal bowl to the middle of the kitchen table and leaned back in my chair.
“You got a better idea Ham?”
He did.
STILL THE MIDDLE, BUT AFTER THE OTHER MIDDLE
“Leave the box in the corner, and get the fuck out.”
I did as I was told. His reaction was pretty much par for the course and I quit being surprised by how rude everyone was to me. The bottom line was that I was making $200 for every delivery. I didn’t know what they contained, and quite frankly I didn’t want to know. “1000 8x 11 Manilla Envelopes” was printed on the side of every box, so in my head, that is what I delivered.
My brother asked me to come work with him in California. 3 weeks on the road with Ham and an easy $5000. I drove and he slept, he drove and I slept. I missed Della, but this “work” with my brother was probably the best time of my life. I loved spending time with my bro. Plus, $5000 in Lava Hot Springs was a years rent on an apartment for Della and me. She would be proud.
“Hold on”
I froze.
“Open it up”
This was our 3rd to last box, last stop, Sacramento then back to the Springs.
He saw the fear in my face and stood up.
22 packages down, and the 23rd sitting on this mans office floor, atop of his zebra pelt rug, was going to be my demise. I swallowed hard.
He pulled a knife from the center drawer, and slowly edged around the corner of his giant wood desk. His peppered gray hair slicked back, crisp white shirt tucked in, and even though he came from a seated position, his khaki pants were perfectly unwrinkled. My senses opened up, my adrenaline was pumping. I quickly surveyed the room and realized the possessions in his office did not match his job title of “senior accountant”. While petrified, I was not surprised. He didn’t say a word, and never broke eye contact with me as he bent down and cut through the tape.
Since the beginning of our trip I had no curiosity about what was in these boxes. None. I figured it was either something my brother should not have in his possession, or it was something other than what the recipients were expecting. I didn’t care. Even though my brother is super shady, I love him, and I would do anything to help out. Obviously I wanted the money, and prior to right now I hoped that my brother was not a criminal. But at this moment if Heroin and plutonium were what this guy wanted, then by God I hope my brother had it.
He reached in and pulled out an envelope.
He looked into the envelope.
He repeated this 5 or 6 times.
Unfortunately the box was labeled correctly.
A mixed expression of anger and disappointment came across his face, and he started towards me.
I took two steps back and found myself pressed against a floor to ceiling 6th story window.
“Ham.” I whimpered “Fucking Ham.”
I felt his hand hit my chest. I heard the sound of glass breaking. I dropped.
BACK TO THE END

Shark!!!

I remember seeing it for the first time, I felt tiny. I was tiny. I was 5. I wandered across the beach to where the water meets the sand, barely able to make impressions with my little feet, and picked up a shell. Then it hit me, literally. A (relatively) gigantic wave crushed my toddler body and sent me tumbling through the shallow surf. I felt the sheer power of the ocean, and I was afraid.
This is a fear I have outgrown. There are few things that make me feel better than being submerged in water, preferably, the ocean. I believe that there is something healing, therapeutic, and life energizing in this earth covering substance.
So over this holiday weekend, naturally, I jumped in.
As usual, it was great. Then I saw a fin. The first pass it came down the face of a wave 15 feet away from me. I slowly started back to shore. Then I saw it pass again going up a wave. I went faster. When I got to knee depth I rushed up the shoreline in the direction of the animal and started waving people in.
I didn’t want to yell “shark” because I knew it would create panic, but as people poured out of the water, panic was in their eyes.
Without a whistle or an authoritative red bathing suit, I managed to get 20-30 people back onto land.
After my job was done, I walked to the beach set-up where my friends were relaxing. Before I could tell my story someone said, “did you see that pod of dolphins swimming out there?”. I guess I saw at least one of them.
Aside from the fact that I ruined a beach day for a few people, quite possibly scarred a child for life, and in all likelihood looked like a complete asshole, I was pretty happy with how I responded to this.
I directed people out of what I perceived as harms way, and felt like I would have gone back into the water if need be.
So really, I am kind of a hero. You know, the kind that ruins your Saturday.