Ever get annoyed? Ever feel like someone needs to be told where the dog died? Or handed a crowbar and a tub of Elbow Grease to help them pry their head out of their arse? Congratulations--you've come to the right place.

And when I'm not commenting on the latest thing to piss me off, I'm trying to figure out my own twisted life. Because, hey, I'm like that.

On a gentler note: for anyone dealing with depression, anxiety, and other assorted bullshit: You are NOT alone.

And if you're looking for a laugh, search on the key word "fuckery." It's just my little thing (as the bishop said to the actress).

Thursday, January 20, 2011

The Destruction of the Throne of Power

Or, the Downfall of Sports in Hell's Vestibule

Well, there's little joy in New England this week--aside from all the snow, rain, and more snow, the Patriots lost on Sunday to the Jets.

I couldn't be happier.

Now, I (usually) am a home town supporter; I certainly am NOT a Jets fan, not after their utter lack of sportsmanship (although the Pats don't have a great rep with the coaches spying on other teams, etc.), but I also can't stand the way the city erupts whenever there's a championship here. I mean, I understand getting excited about the Sox. We waited a longass time for that World Series in '04, and after the division win over the Yanks, that Cinderella comeback... That was a glorious year, the one that left all of us saying, "I wish *insert dead dear one's name here* was alive to see this." Then 2007 was just the icing on the cake, y'know? But the stupid behavior in the streets... *sigh* I hate it. I REALLY hate it.

It doesn't help that I don't have a lot of respect for the way the team owner has held the state hostage for money to rebuild the stadium, not to mention the fact that I won't patronize the place--what they want for parking is obscene. And I really, REALLY hate football. I mean, I was cool with the Pats for a little while--seeing Teddy Bruschi playing with his kids on the field right before that first Superbowl win softened my attitude towards them, but after he retired... And let's face it, Hollywood Tom is the NFL's version of the blonde joke. What a fuckin' IDIOT. He opens his mouth, and it's like, Dude, are you retarded and just got lucky that it doesn't show in your face? Wow. That, and the fact that he dumped his pregnant girlfriend to shag a supermodel... Ug. Classy guy. And the fact that the city almost shut down because he had a little fender-bender on Cambridge Street... Please. WHO FUCKING CARES?!?!?!?

I mean, if it was Jason Veritek or Jonathan Papelbon, I'd worry a little. Ditto if it was Papi.

I also don't give a hang about basketball. I used to like basketball--I came of age in the era of Larry Bird, Robert Parrish, Kevin McHale... Decent gents who played the game with style, class and skill. Now... thugs, the lot of 'em. I gave up on basketball after Charles Barkley made the announcement that he was a basketball player, not a role model. Sorry, for the money they're paying you, you can behave like a decent human being and shut the fuck up about it.

Whatever happened to the concept of citizenship? Explain that to me.

Ditto for football. Thugs. I mean, how many convicted felons are playing in the NFL today?

We won't discuss the prices they charge for "official" team gear. Jesus wept. I was actually having a convo with an idiot in Sbux last week, and he tried to give me shit for wearing "official" team gear (I had my pink Red Sox fleecy scarf that Vicki made for me for Xmas). It gave me a tickle to say, "Hate to tell you, but all of my 'official' gear has come from Canadian thrift shops. I've never paid more than $5 for it."

It was funny to watch his jaw hit his chest and try to recover. I LOVE doing that to idiots. That conversation was a trial; not only does he worship Radiohead *gak*, but he needed to one-up everything. What was funny was when he switched the topic to autism and how a "guy he knew" could pass for normal because "he'd learned scripts." When I replied that I could always spot it, he was like, no, I doubt that. The exchange went on for a bit, and I had to bite my tongue from saying, "ASSHOLE, I KNOW YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT YOURSELF!!!" Fucking retard. Two decades working at an education school with an LD program, yeah, I know how to spot.

I'll talk about retards at another time. I have one in my family; I hate his guts. He's an asshole. Not because he's retarded, but because he's a fuckin' retard. If you're one of those apologists who think that just because someone has a handicap, they're a saint, please... fuck off. Go read someone else. Please. Being retarded doesn't exempt you from being human. Don't believe me? I'll introduce you to my older cousin. Actually, I won't. I don't speak to him.*

Going back to the Red Sox in '04, my *insert dead relative here* was my mother's father, Jack. He was a die hard Sox fan, definitely one of the faithful. Never went to Fenway; I don't think I can ever recall Jack going to a live sporting event, but by God, that TV never went off, and if it wasn't the news, it was sports. *slams head on the desk*

And where he watched was from the Throne of Power.

I hadn't thought about the Throne of Power for years (probably because I'd deliberately blocked it out), but Celebricrush's story about his mother (yeah, the fat joke that still makes me howl) and the Throne of Misery brought back all the horror of the Throne of Power. I promised you guys a Jack story a couple of weeks ago, and this is the one that came to mind...

And now… the Saga of the Epic Battle

In Hell’s Vestibule, the Throne of Power was the Center of the Universe. Jack always had a chair, a recliner covered in naugahyde (what the fuck is naugahyde? Has anyone ever seen a nauga?). God help you if you sat in His Chair, even if he wasn’t home. Ever seen All in the Family? My grandfather made Archie Bunker look like a flamin’ liberal, I shit you not. My grandmother had her chair, too—always a fabric-covered rocker, sometimes with a foot rest that popped up, sometimes not. Their chairs were side by side in The Den, and the narrow path between them was the only way to get into The Parlor. Directly across from the chairs was the TV, to the right of the kitchen doorway. The TV was the High Altar of the household—Jack’s constant companion after he retired. That goddamned thing never went off, I swear, and if it wasn’t news on the box, it was sports.

If you ever wondered why I am not a professional sports fan (with the exception of the Red Sox, but then, that’s a religion; and hockey because he never liked hockey) it is because of Jack. If there was a football game on, he’d find it. If there was no football, there was a boxing match. If there was no boxing, there was baseball. Basketball. Gymnastics. Horse racing. Billiards! Shit, the Olympics were like Christmas for him, TV wise. Didn’t matter that no one else wanted to watch it, it was HIS house, HIS TV, get the hell out if you don’t like it.


Anyway, Himself went through a couple of Lazy Boys and fuck knows what else. After my grandmother died in ’85, he decided to get himself a NICE chair. Her rocking chair was moved to the parlor, and he bought himself a Craftmatic Contour Recliner.

With heat.

With massage.

With a fucking remote control.

It was warm beige. Naugahyde. Wooden arm rests. HUGE.

And it was FUGLY.

And uncomfortable.

This was a $1000 chair, and the damn thing was the worst piece of shit to sit on. There was no way to get comfortable on it unless you used a mound of pillows and covered it with a sheet. Any bare skin stuck to it otherwise, and peeling yourself off of it was painful, like ripping off a bandaid times ten.

And he loved that chair. It was his Throne. He watched TV in it, he read in it, he ate in it, he slept in it.

Well, he and his love affair with the chair lasted until he went into the nursing home in 1989.
When it was well and truly established that he was not coming home, the decision was made to dismantle the chair.

We tried to do it properly. We did. Rick (my ex-husband; he'd earned a shot at it--he'd done more to take care of the old man towards the end than any of his miserable sons, including bathing and dressing and generally dealing with him when the rest of us were considering calling Dr. Kevorkian, or just grabbing a hammer) pulled out his electric screw gun and tried to find a way to take it apart piece by piece. However, the chair would not cooperate because even though the motor had gotten cranky and the heat didn’t work any longer and the massager made an ominous grinding noise that made the monstrosity dance across the hardwood floor, it was actually incredibly well constructed.

So we decide to take it apart.

Fuck that—we decided to massacre that damn thing.

Picture this: three adults (myself, St. Teresa and Rick) armed with a crowbar, a hatchet, and a saw, approaching the Throne of Power like we were stalking a wild boar, ready for it to turn on us and gore us bloody. It took all three of us to turn it upside down, legs in the air, helpless as a turtle dropped on a rock by a hungry eagle.

And then… then we fell upon it. Every scream of a screw being ripped from its anchorage made us cackle in fiendish delight as the Throne protested its demise. Every wire torn from its housing, every mechanism levered out of its safe niche… the Throne of Power put up a hell of a fight, but three hours later, covered in sweat, dust and sawdust, the three of us stood over the pile of scrap that had been the symbol of ultimate control in the house, gripping our instruments of destruction, panting with exhaustion, glowing with triumph.

The Throne of Power was dead.

And the oppressed celebrated! We howled in jubilation over the pitiful remnants of the instrument of our subjugation. We patted each other on the back, complimenting ourselves on our fortitude and grace under pressure, for not bowing before our stubborn foe.

Frabjous Day!

And then, of course, we had to haul the parts out to the side of the house to wait for garbage day. But that bit of drudgery didn’t matter—we had prevailed.

And you can be DAMN SURE not a scrap of it was allowed to be squirrelled away and taken back in.

I'm also willing to state that, with the exception of the occasional Bruins and Red Sox game, professional sports has not been allowed on our TV since the day he left the house.

I'm good with it.

* I used to work in a theatre company with someone who would deliberately cast at least two of the LD students per production. It was good for the company. The only problem was that, rather than treat them like they were human beings, this person would speak to these kids like they were three-years-old and hard of hearing and thinking, rather than just in possession of a learning disorder. I don't see that as a positive thing; I see that as just another form of stupid prejudice. I mean, yeah, you make allowances for the LD, but at the same time, the whole point of the program they were enrolled is was to prepare them for independent living and functioning.

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