Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Please visit "My Private Coney"

The wonderful writer and NYC blogger, C.O. Moed, interviewed me for her latest series on her blog. I'd be pleased to have you take a quick look and be sure to read over the archives of her blog - she's great.

The interview is here.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Dem Nah Really Know Dem Selves - Tales of Perseverance

So you have to admit, you have a knack for attracting more than your fair share of crazy psychos, quiet sociopaths, mis-guided Ja-Fakens, rasta wannabees, outright criminals and generally unstable kooks into our lives over the past several years. True?

 How yah mean? (giving the side eye)

Let's face it, honey, you're like a Flystrip for Nutjobs, a Crazy-Ass Magnet. You're the Hurricane Alley for Storms of Insanity. Every year, a new one blows through. 

{Kissssss teeeeth} Ah true, dat. Mi nah know how dem always a fine mi.  A pure chobble dem gi' mi.

It's kind of like having your own personal hurricane season. They arrive slowly, without any indication that the season will be anything but slightly breezy. Maybe a few pockets of high pressure. Nothing to be alarmed about at first....

Ah true, dem all seem like dem narm-al. Dem nah seem so crazy.

Yeah, right and most hurricanes start out with only a few gray clouds in a clear blue sky. And, just like the storms, these nuts don't give you much time to  nail plywood over the windows. Before you know it, they've whipped up a fury of crazy ass winds, a Category 6 pounding. They barrel through the place making the weathermen cling to stop signs, and leave a trail of debris in their wake.

Hah -- mi like dat! Dem bring starm a true. Pure wind a blow true and mash up evry-TEENG. One come like a Gilbert, one come like a Ivan. 

So, why do you still spar with some of them?

Cho! How yah mean? Mi no really spar wid dem. Wi no really fren'.

Well, you still chat with most of them on the phone, you take their calls or still play ball with some of them or such. You never really burn a bridge, no matter how nutso they've gone on us.

Well, a true but dem nah really know dem selves. Mi finally see dem fi real, but (shrugs) dat a fi dem bizness. Mi no need fi say dis or dat, mi just know fi miself dat dem nah really fren', jess let dem hold dem carnah.

I think you have trouble with boundaries. You don't really put any fences up with these kooks. They still think you're best friends. Maybe after an initial dust-up you put them out for a hot minute,  but then it's right back to normal, as if nothing happened.

A so yuh tink. Cho. Nah mon, mi know dem and how far mi cyan tek dem. Mi have borderline wid dem, but dem just nah see it. Mi seh, dem NAH know dem SELVES, so how dem a know mi?

Let's run through a few - shall we?

(Smiling) Ah how many wi haff? 

Quite a few, sweetie, quite a few. And they all seem to follow a similar path, a pattern.

How yuh mean, pah-ton?

Well, I see a lot of similarities in the path to full-scale crazy. First, they all think you are their Best Friend, within a very short time of knowing you. You're very agreeable and likable, people instantly think they are close to you.

Ah true, dem teenk we a bes fren' but dem nah even really know mi. Sometime mi cyan even remembah dem name. Mi sit wid dem fi two ow-ah and mi nah know dem name.

See what I'm sayin'? And they are clueless. Here's what else is usually the case with the psychos:

1. S/he is a loner with few friends OR recently dumped by the only friend(s) or significant other they had.

Ah true, dat, dem nah have much fren'.

2. S/he is a college drop out, if they were lucky enough to even get into a college.

Mi cyan believe how dem have so much opportunity, nah like fi wi, and dem still a phuck up dem life.

3. S/he is a drug user of some kind and to to varying degree. But each has an intoxicant of choice. Which is used to excess.

Yah mon, dem like fi bun weed or tek acid or bun rock or sintin'.

4. S/he is unemployed and able to sit in front of the Sci Fi channel for hours on end. Or surf the internet until their eyes bleed. Or run up our phone bill.

 Ahhhh, true dat. Dem nah werk, dem nah haff no responsibility, like a mi.

Which brings me to number 5:  S/he is on the dole of some kind -- either public, such as welfare/social security/veterans benefits, or private such as a trust fund, distracted wealthy parents, or lottery winnings - seriously. 

Seen, suh? Dem nah haffi werk, dem haff munny! NUFF! Dem free fi jess sit an chat and bun. See wha mi seh? Dem nah know dem selves.

Let's start with "J". 

Ah, mi remembah "J".

Yeah, so do I. Troubled "J", who thought a nice little trip to Jamaica, to get life sorted out and, being your Best Friend, would also get an original Rasta Tour. See the Real Jamaica. Got a whole heap of money from Mommy to pay for the trip.

Yeah man, mi a teenk mi a gwan and get a whole heapah munny fi do sintin' in Jamaica. Mi teenk mi gwan gi' one tour and cash out. Dat a mash up fas' {kisssss teeeeth}. Pure prob-LEM.

Yeah, seems "J" tooted all of Mommy's money right up the nose before stepping on the plane to Mobay. I remember when you went to the airport for the pick up and "J" couldn't even put a dollar of gas in the car. Idiot "J" thought Jamaica was just one tropical paradise where you can just roll out your sleeping bag on the beach and live for free. Fool.

What a phuckery. Mi haffi put "J" up in Perseverance fi live fi nuttin. Pure cost. Cho.

Yeah, Perseverance, an aptly named dump. The place for those with nothing left to lose. If I recall, "J" ended up selling an expensive camera and even the last pair of shoes in order to pay the room fee. And I was on the phone with  "J's" Mommy over and over again, trying to get a return trip all sorted out.

Man, mi haffi borrow one shoes so "J" could fly home 'pon de plane.See wha' mi seh? Dem nah know dem selves.

Yeah, and so much for making money on the Original Rasta Tour. Let's talk about "E". Now "E" was a different story.

Mi all-wess say "E" gonna start some mischief. Mi know it. Mi mine seh "E" a chobble.

Yeah, but still you did business with "E."  Now "E" also thought you were Best Friends, when really you were just loose business associates. Right?

Gwan, chat now, lemme hear wha yuh seh?

Well, once "E" realized that getting burned in the business department, to the tune of around a thousand bucks, was just the cost of friendship, well then all hell broke loose. Thank god for the District Attorney's office and one speedy Restraining Order. Need I say more? What a nightmare.

(Shaking head) a dat mi seh, "E" jess chobble.

Let's chat about "D". Also one Best Friend for the longest while. Until things started going missing from our house. First it was little things from the bathroom - soap, toothpaste, fancy lotions.

And den mi nice gold watch GONE. Mi know seh "D" tek dat watch. Mi put "D" 'pon probation for lang time.

Yeah and then you let the probation lapse and before you know it, "D" was back in the house and stole a pile of checks! No more "D" in the house, ok?

Mi know seh mi haffi watch "D" close, mi know seh mi cyant let "D" alone in I house.

Like I said, I think you have trouble setting up boundaries with these kooks. Someone steals from you and me, just for starters, they should be banished. Others have done a lot worse. Banish and done, I say.

S'alright, mi jess know seh "D" is one teef. Mi have my boun-dree in my mine.

A boundary in your mind? Ok. How about "T", who we took in, fed, gave a place to stay for the longest time. "T" would have been living out of a car if it weren't for us. Then after a month passes and we're going to Jamaica, "T" expects to stay on, for free, while we are gone.

A true, we haff uddah people come fi stay and rent wi place, mi tell "T" he haffi go. An "T" no like dat.

Yeah, then "T" starts bad mouthing us to our friends and neighbors because we tell "T" it is Time To Go. No good deed goes unpunished. Do you still talk to "T"?

Mi no really spar wid "T". If "T" call mi a chat, if mi pass "T" 'pon de street, mi jess hail up, but dats it.

That's more than enough. Ok, let's chat about "K". Yet another misguided nut who mistakes a business arrangement for being Best Friends. Yet another sad soul who decides a first timer's trip to Jamaica for one Original Rasta Tour would be just the thing to get "K"s life on track.

What a ting. Mi sarry mi evah look 'pon "K." A true dat.

Yep, yet another one who soaked Mommy and Daddy for cash to see The Real Jamaica. Except that Mommy and Daddy didn't know Jamaica was the plan. A stolen credit card, forged checks and a switcheroo with an airline ticket -- the whole nine yards, what a scammer!  -- and "K" ends up in Jamaica alright, but eventually with NO CASH. Not at least as soon as Mommy and Daddy figure out they've been scammed by their own offspring.

Pure disappointment. Mi teenk "K" haff munny fi bun, mi seh, munny a flow. Cho. Pure phuckery a gwan wid "K". Eediat bizness. Mi really teenk dat mi gwan finish Miss Una's house 'pon dat trip (shakes head).

Oh, you finished something alright, but not Miss Una's house. Yet another loser on our hands who had to spend some time at Perseverance once the forged check gravy train came to a grinding halt. They all end up at Perseverance, don't they? There have been a few more in years past if we really want to dig up ALL the history.

What a ting. Mi sorry dat evah happen. "K" a pure phuckery bizness, pure teef an' lie.

You see what I mean about a pattern? And each and every one of these folks could call you on the phone today and you'd still chat with them, right?

So (shrugging again), what I dif-rence? Ah true, mi gi' dem one chat but dat no mean wi a fren'. MI SEH, dem nah know dem selves. Dat a fi dem problem.

But mi know dem now fi true. And dem nah know mi at-tall.