Monday, December 13, 2004

Changing the Tone, or, My So-Called Interior Life

Then someone get me a band-aid
Before I fall on my fuckin' face
'Cause I'm bleedin' all over the place
--Randy Newman

DURM, Cackalacky--Amid faltering investor confidence, some analysts have suggested a risky re-branding move for JoDI. The site has experienced some difficulty in creating an image that connects with the coveted 28-70mm metrolingual pansexual demographic. Erratic production levels have further alienated the site from those who want More More More, and want it for less...

*******

What am I doing here? I have nothing to report. There are those who have a much lighter touch, are funnier, are more well-adjusted. Much as I try to attenuate my congenital earnestness, I can't help myself.

I once read about "spa" where upscale wooey people go to clean their innards via some new-age voodoo high colonic. The regimen is primarily two weeks of fasting along with some secret herbal concoction and meditation. The proof of the pudding is, after several days of zero bowel movement, a final and particularly nasty ur-shit, a purge of all that lingering red meat signalling a successful bowel rebirth. This technique is not new. Michael Ondaatje wrote a shimmering bit of historical fiction in his imagined life of Buddy Bolden, Coming Through Slaughter, in which we find this passage:
He tried offering Crawley a banana.
Banana, hell, I'm dieting. Just this special water.
Go on, take one. You look sick.
I can't. Jesus, I'd like to. Do you know I haven't had a shit for a week?
How's your energy?
Slow...this time I'm aiming for the tail of shit.
The tail of shit.
Yeah...got to it once before. If you don't eat you see you finally stop shitting, naturally. And then about two weeks after that you have this fantastic shit, it comes out like a tornado. It's all the crap right at the bottom of your bowels, all the packed in stuff that never comes out, that always gets left behind.
Consider this entry a purging of some mental turds, a project not unlike Vonnegut's stated intention at the beginning of Breakfast of Champions that
I think I am trying to clear my head of all the junk in there--the assholes, the flags, the underpants...I think I am trying to make my head as empty as it was when I was born onto this damaged planet fifty years ago..
*******

Things I Need To Shit Out of My Head:

I was born under a bad sign.

It's too late.

Magic.

*******

A couple of months ago on the occasion of myimpending 20 year high school reunion, I wrote a little "potty-mouth rant" (as an old friend called it) which created a minor but satisfying conflagration on the reunion listserv, one which elicited all sorts of interesting interpersonal revelations. One of my former classmates wrote to me and remarked how entertaining and self-flagellating he found it. Now a very demographically significant fellow spending his days on an upper floor of Deutschebank, he made an interesting claim: that he would consider it a high achievement that, if Googled, his name would return no results. I think that's what I want: to not need to be noticed.

But here I am. How do I look?

*******

At JoDI, we're constantly striving to make our product more product-like. Won't you take a moment to fill out the following brief evaluation?

How would you describe JoDI to a friend? (circle one)
1. Pathetic scrawl
2. Sandy crotch
3. Spanish fly
4. Planck's constant
5. Smoke 'em if you got 'em

What qualities come to mind when you think of JoDI? (circle all that apply)
1. Resolute
2. Unwavering
3. Fast and bulbous
4. Frothy
5. Make mine a double

How could we make JoDI more appealing to superstitious morons like yourself?
1. Chase scenes
2. Vanilla scent
3. Body modification
4. Sign on the dotted line
5. White noise

Please tell us about yourself.

What is your household income?
1. Jerry Springer
2. Rikki Lake
3. Maury
4. Montel
5. Oprah

Do you enjoy any of the following hobbies/pastimes?
1. Curling
2. Auto-erotic asphyxiation
3. Bint ear cloth-ing
4. Taxidermy
5. Applied hedonics
6. Compulsive winking
7. Shrinkwrapping
8. Beer can collecting
9. Recreational hermeneutics
10. Amateur keratotomy
11. Pig latin
12. Competitive mastication
13. Agoraphobia
14. Smelting
15. Cocaine

Thank you for your participation. Results will be tabulated, numbers will be crunched, big wheels will keep on spinnin'. You need not be present to win. This message will best self-destruct before the date stamped on the lid. Don't touch that dial.

5 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh, Mr. C. Don't you dare take this down before I have a chance to reply properly. This is a gem.

Bakerina

11:41 PM  
Blogger goliard said...

hold on, back up the truck. what sign is it? for fear of public humiliation and recriminaton, exposure, etc. i cannot be pinned down to numbers, nossir. problems with authority n'all.

10:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

At last!, she said, Dexter-like, cracking her knuckles...

To answer your preamble question, "How do I look?"...(smokes case of Lucky Strikes for that "real New York flavor!")..."You're a vision, doll."

How would you describe JoDI to a friend? (circle one)
3. Spanish fly, only without that pesky side effect of causing death. Yeah, baby, yeah!

What qualities come to mind when you think of JoDI? (circle all that apply)
How about 6. Make mine a fast, frothy bulbous double? Hey, I think I'm getting the hang of this!

How could we make JoDI more appealing to superstitious morons like yourself?
2. Vanilla scent. I'm a bakerina, it's the law.

Please tell us about yourself.
Well, I got up this morning, and then I had a piece of toast, and then...oh. Sorry.

What is your household income?
6. MST3K.

Do you enjoy any of the following hobbies/pastimes?
1. Curling
2. Auto-erotic asphyxiation
3. Bint ear cloth-ing
4. Taxidermy
5. Applied hedonics
6. Compulsive winking
7. Shrinkwrapping
8. Beer can collecting
9. Recreational hermeneutics
10. Amateur keratotomy
11. Pig latin
12. Competitive mastication
13. Agoraphobia
14. Smelting
15. Cocaine
All of them. Simultaneously. In the company of a dozen lithe, naked Scotsmen.

If you have any questions concerning the above, please do not hesitate to contact my security detail at PCAMB.

yereverluvvin'
Bakerina

12:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

One of my sons had, according to the pediatric gastroenterologist he saw infrequently for a year, a lower bowel condition that had probably persisted since he was an infant. Probably created by habitually holding back his stockpile of dump, his lower colon was stretched out, pulling some naturally oddly wired nerves out of the path of the waste they are intended to detect. The body, when not distorted by such behavior, naturally detects when we have a deposit to make, and closes up an inner sphincter so we can wait for an opportune time/place to let loose. His refusal to excrete also caused the load to ferment, something we are all familiar at to some level, creating a little reservoir of liquid yuk at the exit of his body. Without his body signalling itself of the presence of a mass of old, suppressed, and increasingly rigid leftoevers in his tube, he was left to consciously keep the gates closed lest the cesspool that was waiting on the other side make its way out. Of course, kids run and play and couldn't/shouldn't be charged with pinching their cheeks together 24/7, so his relaxed body frequently let out what normally is saved for the pot, into his shorts. When querried, he would reply, "I didn't feel it until it was too late." It wasn't until we understood the anatomy that we felt so bad, how wronged he had been.

After a year of prescription-level laxative, he's done with his physical problem. He certainly recalls his difficulty, and has much healthier bathroom habits. And our laundry is not what it used to be.

Travails as metaphor: while the pharmacy interaction wasn't medically necessary, more fiber, less milk, and mineral oil would have worked eventually, it was expedient. More vital, though, was his need to purge regularly, around 4 PM we established with the Dr., so he wouldn't have that stuff sitting around to do the bad deed later. And a weekly enema, to start the week off right (maybe that's why some people go to church; but, then again, maybe that's a psychospiritual 20 oz steak, too).

Rebranding, focus groups, direct sales, Ponzi schemes, whatever it takes: I can't say I practice it, but the purge is, indeed, curative.

9:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

look at her!) prolific, magnanimous, and a dozen other words for sweet. frankly, you lost me when you called me a moron...*

goliard

2:01 PM  

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