About eight months ago, I was in Rochester, New York. Arrival by airplane on Thanksgiving Day was quite a perfect choice. I went to see my one of my childhood best friends, Chance Michael Phillips. No person has ever been there for me as much as Chance. He rescued from the tyranny of my alcoholic father when I was a high school. Then, he rescued me from a Bessemer group home I did not belong in when I was nineteen. Finally, he took me in when I was heartbroken over a cocaine swindling former shot girl at a Florida strip club. It should be noted that I never went to said strip club.
My flight descended from the blue-black-purple night sky and delved right into in the ambient snowy evening on Thanksgiving of 2016. Upon arriving at the city where dreamers go to live, or vice versa, snow covered the ground. I was both emotionally and physically unavailable. The first person I met, not including my childhood best friend, was Monsieur Adam, whom is a veteran of the War on Terror. My dreamy childhood friend Chance, and Adam—my soon to be great friend—escorted me to the residence I was to fill with love, joy, and soliloquys.
Upon arrival, Chance’s roommate and my long time Native American scholar friend, Nancy, greeted me. Immediately, I was bequeathed a glass of red wine in one hand and a glass piece in the other. I sat down at the dinner table to feast. Tunes by the Grateful Dead and the Talking Heads embraced the air in which they danced.
The polyphonies of quotable conversation cleansed my consciousness in a constructive fashion. Temporarily, I unearthed contentment by gazing into Chance’s pacific, emerald eyes. I finally became entirely inebriated when resounding, sonorous cacophony of sorrow riddled the air. To everyone’s dismay, my fiery, rip-roaring soaring that was entirely stoked by hugs, drugs, and friendship-induced ecstasy faded to black. Everything deadened, though not due to vapidity. And, if I am being honest, the origin of eerie, yet beautiful, blues was everything I felt so inclined to discuss.
But, dammit, I persevered. I became innocently effervescent later in the evening due to the eyes, ears, and elegance of the Zahra, who is currently visiting form the Middle East to hone the art of translation through the lens of the University of Rochester’s MFA program. Mademoiselle Zahra, who is a total babe by the way, captivates her audience. Positively worth of being an empress, and 1000% not a temptress, Zahra speaks more articulately than the vast majority of native English speakers. In addition, her peerless ability to see a symbol as an unconscious manifestation of a culture that once was and still has time to be. She inspired me to ponder an audience’s personal relationship with not only religion, but also, commodities and communities.
Religion itself is, sometimes, best described as personal. Sigmund Freud’s Civilization and Its Discontents opines that it is utter vanity, and quite possibly insanity, to claim to have reckoned the ultimate character of God, aka the infinite. Yet, it is clear that one can still healthily Romanticize a being’s spirited, personal relationship with an avatar—or a symbol for that matter.
In contrast, the impersonal relationship with avatars is presumably a passive, dismissive acceptance of the potential inability to reckon absolute truth for all of humanity. All things considered, to wager that one God is superior to another God is rather ridiculous, pitifully procrustean, and sanguinely stupid.
“Really though, how much destruction goes into maintaining civilizations or empires like the Ottomans, Rome, and the United States of America?”
“Entirely too much.”
“It is clear to me that a nation with too big a military may be cheating the world when it comes to economic overhaul. Don’t all civilizations reach a point at which they should become obsolete intellectually.”
“Certainly, this is why I speak on community and commodity exchanges as opposed to the reductive political totality of nations and nations.”
This conversation is exactly what I love about the ontology of Thanksgiving as it carries onward into the future; in essence, no one owns the land, for we are all children of Earth. The aforementioned counter-cultural ideology becomes clear when one considers the sheer vastness of the Cosmos, or of the Heavens. Let us face it, if Earth is irrelevant, which it is, then why would one exert any energy at all hypostatizing a political structure? These narratives, though entirely relevant in this era, are too generalized to be true and too fickle to be worth hypostatizing.
So there I was drinking red wine from a goblet sized wine glass on the most torturous of all holidays with my best friend’s spouse, Nancy Scott. Her vast, immeasurable knowledge of history was just as rich as the lovely feast. Granted, everyone thought the choice of chicken instead of turkey was a bit weird. But, we rolled with it. The present company included Adam, Zahra, Chance, and Nancy.
With impeccable decorum, Adam, who is and will forever be a Middle East war veteran and theoretical physicist enthusiast, gave me the affirmative that it was indeed a little weird.
All was well in the historic district of Rochester.
“America is a place that goes to shit sometimes; however it is really a place of utter love and chaos because I demand it so. I might as well be king because Trump’s word may one day become American law. You are aware I am in an accelerated master’s program at the University of Rochester. I study post-structuralist critiques of Modernism. I feel esteemed. I feel both great and afraid. My life is sort of like the grey, wintry weather.”—Chance
“Well damn Chancie-Boo. I miss you, too. Thank you so much for you and Nancy taking me in. I am currently unemployed, careless, and salty over heartbreak.”—I told him in his ear.
“You’d like Tanja.”—Chance compassionately responded
Zahra snickered silently to herself.
“She fine, though?”—I asked in spirited curiosity with utter disregard to Nancy’s squirming body language.
“Hell yeah, Playuh…”—responded Chance who was quoting his Father.
“My squishy tooshie doesn’t want to touch butts with her.”—I replied ostensibly courteously.
“Shame… You deserve better than Bitch.”—Chance and Nancy replied in unison describing their attitude about the immature shot girl who ripped my heart out and ate it in front of me.
“So it goes, friend.”—Said Adam and Zahra in unison.
Truth, I spent more time with the lovely Nancy Scott than my friend Chance during my month long stay. The moment I realized that I love her is tatted on my soul. I had just returned from wintry weather whilst utterly sauced. I dove onto the living room futon. Fighting back tears while she choked on resolve, I whimpered that I did not deserve love from no one… ever. Why? Because… because I ruined everything with Heather when I lived in Baton Rouge, Louisiana with my older brother…
Nancy quelled my spirit like she did with Elizabeth when I was sixteen. This is not to say that I was overflowing with tranquility. But, she provided me hope for my future in a peerless fashion over pasta. She told me a folklore story she dreamt up with her creative mind.
In Canada there is a man named Zed that sells drugs from behind a liquor store counter. There were four star-embracing, innocent, puckish mavericks that wanted to jazz up their mediocre evening. So, the four amigos and their dog Amelia trotted through the snowy city streets to party with Zed. Sipping actual Champagne and shooting whiskey, the hyper-congenial party people listened to Zed’s sagacious take on love. Before Zed stood a celibate divorced man, a heart broken wanna be playboy, and two five year love birds. They all learned from the liquor salesmen that love must be or the relationship ought to be put on a shelf—forever resting and simultaneously yearning and presently constructive. They did blow and played in the snow and had a beautiful nights sleep.
Although the story I went on to call “A Few Jaded, Innocent, Puckish Mavericks” was a bit strange, I learned a lot about institutionalized rehab. Nancy and I concluded the night by comparing the excellence of our sexual fetishes. Collectively, we declared that sexuality should never be disgraced if it is between two consenting adults. Love with reason is what mischievously called our motto. We agreed the best word for it was con-sensual.