Thursday, October 7, 2010

Early Xmas in New Orleans

Po Boy Views
Phil LaMancusa
Sweet Baby Jesus
Fools and Mortals
Okay, this is not a holiday article about Joe and Mary on a Harley looking for a room or three fat men on a bicycle with gifts of Frankenstein and Mirth. What do you think I am, an antidisestablishmentarianista? Not me. It don’t pay to make no fun of peoples fates or faiths; if I did that, the Pope would have a hit put out on me quicker than Salome can shed a veil.
And so this is the Christmas season where good Christians everywhere proclaim ‘Peace on earth, good will towards men’ as if that has been a possibility since the riding of Tamerlane’s horde. Think about it.
Here’s a question: how come you can write the word ‘Xmas’ and not Jesus X? Is that what Malcolm X was thinking about when he took that surname? Work with me here; this may get fast paced and require a little more knowledge than your GoogleTexterPedia can keep up with. I hope that my editor doesn’t correct my spelling or my voice; I actually make both of them up as I go along… much to his chagrin.
How about A Christmas Carol a-la-New Orleans? Scrooge can be played by anyone you’d like him to be (played by); preferably someone that pisses you off because they have a power over you and misuses, abuses, or uses it without it with a shred of honor. Someone you would love to see an epiphany of biblical proportions come down on (him, her or them) like a can of WhupAss on an irritating drunk. Like white on rice. Like ugly on an ape. Like a cheap suit on a used car salesman.
So, here comes the Ghost of Holidays Past looking like John Goodman in biker gear saying: “back in the day, Dude, you were stand up! Remember hangin’ at the Seven Seas with Sonny Dupre and Lady Blue?” and he takes Scrooge back to the French Quarter that was, when it was genuine and there were no parking meters. There were phone booths on the street and vegetables at the French Market; you know, when dinosaurs and hippies ruled the world. On Christmas, the saloons and public houses would serve huge holiday meals; everyone was invited and no money was asked for or expected.
Jimi, Janis, Jim and Joni were on the jukes. There was music in the cafes at night and revolution in the air. The Quarter was a candy store and the kids were in charge, rent was cheap and the grass was greener and more plentiful (or was that: ‘the rent was greener and the grass was cheap’?).
“Hey,” sings John Goodman in leather and now lace as well, “remember how we rolled? Reelin’ and a rockin’, we was reelin’ and a rockin’ way ‘til the break of dawn.”
Exit, John, exit stage left, let sleeping dogs lie and leave the past to fade….
BAM! Then comes the Holy Friggin Ghost of the Future played by James Carville; the economy has flat lined, there’s nutria swimming in the Carousel Bar in the Monteleone Hotel and all electronic devices have been rendered useless.
Other horrors and acts of depravity pervade the city on a scale that would make a category five storm seem like a walk in the park. Boats are sunk in the river, one on top of another and smoke and ashes cloud the sky. City Hall is housed in a FEMA trailer surrounded by razor wire; Chris Rose is now mayor and can you guess who is Chief of Police? Chris Owens? John Besh? Fats Domino? Some dude named Emiril?
“Don’t get me started!” yells James “you blew it, FEMA blew it, the Corps blew it, God blew it and even I blew it! The reason that you have drive by shootings is that there’s no place left to park! Kids have Ichips put in their heads at birth and The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has declared New Orleans a hazardous teenage wasteland; AND, now you’ve brought down the wrath and curse of the Bloody Blue Blazing Ball Busters! Oh woe! Oh calamitous unharmonic convergences! I told you that you shouldn’t have been nicer to good old whatsername!” here old James takes a deep breath.
(This is James taking a deep breath: “whuuuuuuuyuup!”…) “What you see around you is desolation, loneliness, hunger, darkness, madness, frenzy and a weariness of the soul. Despair and desperation from the lack of love, and the pains of broken hearts litter the streets like go cups on Sunday morning after a Saints game. Right now, it would suck being you!”
Well, needless to say, Scrooge is taken aback, dumfounded, and flummoxed. “Nay, nay I say!” he screams: “show me no more, Great Spirit, for I am humbled and will surely change my wicked ways!”
“What the !@#$%^&* are you talking about, Ebenezer” says James, “this is what happens when you do change your ways! You see, the world needs rat bastards like you, and you are a rat bastard of an epic proportion. And, had you not been so bad… others would have not been so good, just to have the satisfaction of not being like you!” Fade to black.
Next, Scrooge wakes up in his own bed in a cold sweat; there is a knock at the door, a knock a little louder, and then a banging to beat the band. “Let me in Scrooge, I am the Ghost of Christmas Present!” (Brad Pitt)
“Screw you,” says Ebenezer, “go tell those worthless pricks that I’m raising their rents, their vet bills and their taxes, I’m lowering their wages and their expectations. I’m not going to repair their streets and roads and I’m going to feed their babies pickles! Bwahhahahahahahahaha!” And rolling over in his covers… smiling peacefully, Ebenezer Scrooge goes back to sleep.
Oh, by the way, that’s you, in the future, tied to a red ant mound on Monkey Hill while your best friend steals your Jazz Fest posters! Mend your ways now; there’s enough rat bastards in the world. Happy Happy and Joy, Joy in the holiday season.
Has anyone seen my life; I left it around here somewhere?

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