Monday, December 19, 2011

A Literary Critique Part 1

"Why The Sky Is Blue"
A short story from the collection Stories from the Beginning to the End
By Juan C. Mendez

Full Text

One day Squirrel was tired of having green grass and a green sky. The next day, Squirrel still felt the same way. The day after that, Squirrel decided to do something about the sky and the grass so they wouldn't be the same color.

First, he went to the Ferret and told him his problem. Ferret said that he would help, but only if they made the sky blue, since that was his favorite color. Squirrel agreed.

First, they decided what to use to make the sky blue. They agreed to use blueberries since that was the only thing that was blue in the forest. They collected as many blueberries as they could find. Then they went to Bear and asked him if he would help them make the sky blue. Bear said Yes. He took the blueberries and threw them at the sky. The sky was turning blue. It worked!

The next day Squirrel was so happy he had a party and invited everyone in the forest. Everybody in the forest was also happy about the blue sky. And that is why the sky is blue to this day.

First off, the squirrel in this story is a top class dick. I mean, it takes an absurdly high concentration of shit in ones brains to make the decision to change one of the most basic sights of earthly existence, which affects every non-colorblind being on the planet (sorry Mr. Mulaney), just because it isn't the right hue. At the very least he had a victory throwdown where (as it says in the epilogue) Rabbit finally put out.

Secondly, what exactly is Ferret contributing to this operation? All he does is pussyshit around like a 2006 Cooper during pick-up games, and yet he gets to pick the color of the whole fuckin heavens?

Thirdly, this pathetic author needs to realize that if you list two sequential actions, they can't both be "first." Additionally, if there's only one item in the entire forest that is blue, you can't really say you "agreed" or "decided" to use that for your entire azure adventure. Just, shoddy fucking writing.

Continuing on, had this brilliantly thought out, bulletproof plan somehow failed to sapphire the shit out of the cosmos, what would have been plan B? Come on animals get your shit together. This is why people run you over.

The only true BAMF in this story is, of coarse, Bear. Why, you ask? Cause he beasted a dickton of blueberries into the atmosphere, where they subsequently blew up into trillions of little perfectly-sized pieces and scattered all over the place in a very specific pattern so that they would refract light in just the right way. Duh. If you didn't read between the lines and see that, you dumb.

So, this is something else now

In the past four weeks, I have slept in over 20 different beds in three (soon to be four) different countries. Even though I'm on vacation, my current job effectively requires me to bum around Morocco like a slightly-above averagely dressed vagrant. After feeling more or less at home in the semi-rural armpit that is the BZ, I don't currently have a solid home or plan for the any timescale in the foreseeable future. I'm a fuckin drifter.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Home Stretch

In less than a month I will no longer be a PCV. I don't know how I feel about this.

I do know, however, that the fact that it's nearly October and summer is still blazing away is some serious bullshit.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Profiles in Crazy

It was about this time last year that it dawned on me how many absurd characters roam the semi-paved pathways of the BZ. Not wanting to seem ludicrously inappropriate, I accompanied this realization with keeping my mouth shut about it...well, ok so not really. Anyway, a few months ago a local friend made a quip on the subject and then went on to espouse one of the community's many theories aimed at explaining the (much) higher than average rando-crazo (1) population density.

So, apparently, the stream at the local swimming hole was once believed to help cure all-out-head-craze disease (2) and so the town attracted odd travelers by the butt-load. When the maladies went uncured, everyone just kinda stayed put. I can't really decide where on the spectrum of crap to total and complete bullshit this particular piece of lore lies but needless to say, it's less than bulletproof. Regardless, the total lack of mental health facilities to take of these people in the region is a bit depressing. Lucky for them, Moroccan hospitality ensures they never go hungry.

Well, anyway, here is a short list of the heavy hitters currently wandering around town.

  • Mr. Problem- This dude's eyes can scare children in a town where burying cats alive passes as a fun childhood outing. He is named such for his impeccable ability to find a problem with whatever you are doing and yell at you for it.
  • Miguel- Perpetually drunk dude who was (allegedly) kicked out of Italy for general misconduct. More realistically he was just booted for lack of grafting. Also looks like a Mexican soap opera character and says "no parlo inglezi" to any foreign looking person.
  • The mute- Kind of a nice guy actually.
  • Berber coat guy- The only BZ male I have ever met who does not speak Arabic. Spews his unintelligible brand of crazy from under a coat he keeps over his head at all times while waving a small branch.
  • The nuclear scientist- The next in a series of totally believable back stories, this dude used to be a highly respected nuclear scientist in Europe until he found out too much and had his brain wiped clean by the French government. These days, he spends his time picking up random objects and examining them closely.

(1) the proper scientific term
(2) again, nothing but medically sanctioned nomenclature

Monday, July 25, 2011

Bored and Sweaty

During my interview to join PC more than two years ago, the recruiter asked "What makes you bored" Then she asked "Do you get bored easily?" Minutes later she completed the hat trick by posing "How do you deal with boredom?" At the time I felt it was on odd point to belabor. I mean, how could my life-changing adventure possibly not be non-stop awesomeness?

Fast forward two years. It's the three weeks between Marche Maroc (a PC organized craft fair) and summer camp. I'm sitting in my underwear eating peanut butter out of the jar with a spoon while a fan blasts my face and I watch the 10th consecutive episode of X-Men the animated series. Boredom, surprising as it may seem to other PCVs, has largely spared me over the past two years, but summer is a time when ennui shows no mercy.

Summer days at home, when the youth center is closed, tend to be long, humid affairs when the temperature can top 115 without anyone making too much of a fuss about it. Add the fact that water and power go out on a daily basis and you've got the makings of a grade-A hellhole.

While this perfect storm of misery only happens a couple of times a year, it is important to always have a set of strategies on hand. With that, here is a list of tactics I've succumbed to in order deal with the desolation:

  • stare at the wall
  • finally kill colony of cockroaches in bathroom
  • spill water on floor, watch it evaporate
  • read five-year old copies of The Economist (watch out for this Obama character)
  • creep on fb
  • burn self with water fresh out of the tap
  • solve crimes
  • use the time productively to better myself as a human through study and personal reflection...just kidding
  • sweat buckets
  • write this piece of shit

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Silver Lining?

My sink leaked to the point where it flooded half of the house whilst I was occupied. Luckily, it's so infernally hot out that the whole place dried in an hour.