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We Are Golden

Aug. 12, 2009
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I’m Art Kumbalek and man oh manischewitz what a world, ain’a? So listen, what with the Irish Fest down by the lakefront ’tis this weekend, I thought it a nice thing to share a little story with you’s afflicted with affection for “Ye Ole Sot,” and it goes something like this:

Catholic guy enters the confessional box. To his right there’s a fully equipped bar with Guinness on tap. To his left is a shelf laden with a dazzling array of the finest Cuban cigars not to mention a well-thumbed stack of gentleman’s periodicals of a variety to succor any and all preferential needs. He hears the priest clear his throat from the other side of the confessional window, and so the guy says: “Father, forgive me, for it’s been a heck of awhile since I’ve been to confession, but I must first admit that the confessional box is much more inviting these days.” The priest replies: “Yes, my son. And now you will leave to go say 500 ‘Hail Mary’s’ in penance for trespassing Father’s side of the confessional.” Ba-ding!

So listen, I should tell you’s that I don’t seem to got the gas to pony up an essay’s for you’s this week since I’m still in recovery from the other night when me and the fellas got together over by Little Jimmy Iodine’s place to reminisce and watch the Woodstock movie from years ago on his VCR, seeing as how it’d been 40 years since we ourselves piled into Ernie’s 1966 second-hand two-door Plymouth Valiant to head to the festival and by way of bum directions ended the journey off Route 66 at a filling station in Amarillo, Texas on account of a bum fuel pump, as analyzed by the Johnny Reb pump-jockey moments after routinely checking our dip stick: “You Yankee boys who don’t know shit from shinola when it comes to a Yankee automobile engine driving through the Lone Star State got yourselves a situation here. Do hope you’re not in a hurry to get somewheres.” And forty years later, I still believe that I would choose an eternity in hell over a day in Texas, what the fock.

Anyways, we were well into our third case of ice-cold Rhinelander whilst watching the movie when Joe focking Cocker hit the stage and Julius says, “What the fock. What would I do if you sang out of a tune? I’ll tell you what I’d do, I’d tell you to go take some focking music lessons, that’s what, and then I’d tell you to go find a focking day job and leave the rest of us listening public alone. How come Roy Orbison’s not in this movie? There’s a guy who could sing in tune, I kid you not.”

And then Little Jimmy wondered what the young people today would celebrate 40 years from now as remembrance-anniversary in the year 2049.

“Tough to say,” Herbie says. “What, how cool the ‘Clash for Clunkers’ program was back in the day? Or that Disney Demi Lovato became way cooler than has-been Miley Citrus? Yeah, or maybe they’ll remember how the white American fascist movement got jump-started by the focking health insurance companies who bullshitted about the ‘death panels’ that an option with public insurance would mandate for all white people to be put to death immediately by your doctor, as opposed to the ‘certain death’ all people would have with only the ‘choice’ of private blah-blah market capitalist insurance that no one can afford, and so no insurance, and so you die.”

And then Ray says, “And those hot-shot health-insurance companies won’t even rent you a shovel to dig your own grave, ’cause they’re all about cost-cutting, ain’a? But yet they got plenty of dough to pay the anti-free speech Brown-Shirt knobshine Nazi wannabes to go kibosh town-hall meetings supposed to be about discussion about…”

So Little Jimmy says, “Forty years since the Woodstock. Maybe what we ought to really watch right now is that Easy Rider movie ’cause that’s been forty years to boot, 1969. And talk about the health-care disruption that should be about Americans speaking their mind, I still remember from that movie when the hippie Dennis Hopper hippie biker character says to the older Jack Nicholson Louisiana-lawyer character: “What the hell’s wrong with freedom, man? That’s what it’s all about.” And Jack Nicholson/George Hanson says: “Oh yeah, that’s right, that’s what it’s all about, all right. But talkin’ about it and bein’ it—that’s two different things. I mean, it’s real hard to be free when you are bought and sold in the marketplace. ‘Course, don’t ever tell anybody that they’re not free ‘cause then they’re gonna get real busy killin’ and maimin’ to prove to you that they are. Oh yeah, they’re gonna talk to you, and talk to you, and talk to you about individual freedom, but they see a free individual, it’s gonna scare ‘em.”

And so it goes, ain’a Kurt? ’cause I’m Art Kumbalek and I told you so.


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