Jesus of LA, Going Home to Vote, a capella…

img_1068End of Days got you bummed? Not sure what to do if/when the rapture comes? You need the new best-seller “Apocalypse for Dummies: 10 Survival Tips for the Future” by Hardie Karges, available now in standard or e-book edition. But first, the news:

“Now in those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. This was the first census to take place whilea Quirinius was governor of Syria. And everyone went to his own town to register.
So Joseph also went up from Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to the City of David called Bethlehem, since he was from the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to him in marriage and was expecting a child.
While they were there, the time came for her Child to be born. And she gave birth to her firstborn, a Son. She wrapped Him in swaddling cloths and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.”

Fast forward two thousand years and we have no more decrees, just degrees, of madness and mayhem, on the threshold of a catastrophe, on the threshold of a dream. And we don’t need a census, per se (that’s Latin), since everyone is registered from the moment of birth, with ugly rumors of conspiracy and data chips embedded within us, and the orders come down from Washington, D.C. these days, not Rome, but…

img_1069We do have the vote, and sometimes we have to go home to do it, a legacy of the primitive democracy that once defined us, ‘one man/one vote’ now long replaced by the principle of ‘one man/one car,’ so that no one must ride a donkey anymore, but instead we have machines to do the dirty work for us, as long as we feed them black gunk and clean out the junk every month or when our mothers tell us…

But this election would be different, the one that might definitively decide the future of the world and the future of the human race, for this was the election that pitted hate against acceptance, fear against tolerance, and emotional reactionism against calm reason and rationale. For this is the election that pits the Big Orange One against us all, we the victims of our own success, forgetful of how we got here, and uncaring of where we go from here…

So Hardie decided to go home to vote, from Asia to America, and take his wife Tang back to the empire, Babylon, where she longed to be, full of consumer goods and suburbs for the perusing, two-story homes for the gazing, and fast foods for the grazing. For she was pregnant with jobs, and ambition, and anxious for places to spend her new-found American dollars, for she kinda’ liked the bright lights and big city, the crimes of Paris in general, the streets of Baltimore in metaphor, and the shops of LA in particular…

And so they traveled from Thailand, her home of birth, to America, Hardie’s home of birth, for him to vote and for her to work, and spend, and enjoy the pleasures of civilization, though her husband Hardie would much rather enjoy the pleasures of spirit, which are non-pleasures, really, communion with nature, mystic crystal revelations and the mind’s true liberation…

img_0698But the road was long and full of obstacles. And on the first day they stopped in China, where the old Mandarins are the new Mandarins, for they are the country destined to found the new Empire after America declines and falls to its knees begging and screaming. But that is tomorrow. Today the service is lousy and the airport is arctic, for winter comes early to Beijing or even if you prefer Peking, it’s still cold, and the layover is long, fourteen hours and counting, but the WiFi is free, so I’m good…

Then they landed in Los Angeles, and there was room at the inn, but Hardie doesn’t like inns—he likes hostels—so they stayed at Richard’s house, where they would find a manger for Tang. But Hardie was not of the House of Richard, so he could not vote in California. He was of the House and lineage of Harold in MS, but he would not vote in MS, either, because America did not operate on the principle of birthplace, for it was a mobile society, in motion and emotion, and it functioned with money…

So Hardie would vote in Arizona, because that is where he was when it was time to register, the only prerequisite to voting, that and an address of sorts assorted, for Hardie was not one to settle down and sh*t in a nest, but rather one to p*ss on trees while traveling the world, marking turf and counting countries, while gathering souvenirs along the way…

And on the first day they got the van started, no small task since it had been a long time since it had been started, and the battery had grown weak and tired and needed replacing. So God sent AAA to save the day, doing the job that battery companies themselves refuse to do, and making friends and making neighbors in the process; and the price was good—sold American.

img_1055And on the second day they looked for an apartment for Tang, but the openings were few and the prices were high, for Hollywood was in a process of expansion, and realtors were not returning calls, even though it was the first day of the month, and the peak time for vacancies. But they persevered, and used intuition where logic often fails, and by the third day they had found a place, and on the fourth day they were accepted, credit score and all…

And on the fifth day, they moved their old lives out of cold storage, and on the sixth day they moved in to warm quarters, where she could live for the rest of her wage-earning days, while he would return to the old Asian neighborhood and the monk-hood if the stars are right and the lines are not long. And on the seventh day they rested. And on the eighth day Hardie traveled to Tucson, for it was there that X would mark the spot, and there that he would cast a vote for the future, not the past…

p.s. the future may not be the orange of politics, but gray, the gray of uncertainty and the gray of rainy skies. For while a bullet may have been dodged, a nut and a bolt have been dislodged, and life will never be the same for the average American. The system is broken and the repairmen are all Mexican. The myth of democracy has been downtrodden and the odds of restoring it are not good. What to do is anyone’s guess. But for now I’ll just take a Big Gulp; and make it a Big Orange One. The only other orange in my future are the saffron robes of a Buddhist monk…

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