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“But you’re not real.”

“I’m not real like you but then you’re not real like me. You know I’m not real but really believe I am. It’s about the reality of belief or the belief of reality. I had to come to you in a belief because you people live in a land of make-believe. It don’t matter so much if something is real but if it’s believed to be real.”

“What are you talking about?”

“I don’t know. I do know your belief in me can keep you real.”

“O.K., So you were with Jack?”

“Yeah. Come on you need a beer.”

From the Stop-n-Go I get us a couple of beers and change for Wisconsin, a self-proclaimed Hoodoo guru with the power to heal all but himself. I swallow half my beer, burp and ask..,

“You fucking Jack?”

“Yeah, couple of times, nothing serious.”

I slam the rest of my beer and Sally is telling me,

“You’re upset - I don’t know why you’re upset. What you should be upset about if you choose to be upset and I don’t understand why you make that choice - is Rose.”

“What about Rose? You fuck her too?”

“I fucked her too. But that’s not what I’m talking about.”

“You fucked Rose and Jack?”

“Not at the same time.”

“What, you offer a family plan? Shit.”

“Reality makes me horny.”


“It all starts with a thought.”

“Yeah but Rose? Isn’t that gay? I didn’t know you were gay, I didn’t know she was gay or bi-whatever.”

“Me fucking Rose is not gay, me fucking Jack is gay.”

“That don’t even make sense.”

“That’s because you don’t fully understand yet. You don’t see the dots to connect; that’s the problem with categories and generalizations.., static boundaries in a dynamic world. And that’s not what I’m talking about.”

“No, I think I’m being pretty specific; how could you fucking her not be gay?”

“You’re not getting it - it’s like she fucked you.”

“What?” Then it began to sink in, if I was the re-incarnation of and Sally was a manifestation of, then.., I started to feel better before realizing;

“Oh shit, you fucked Jack how gay is that?”

“Look we don’t have time for this bullshit. People’s lives are on the line.”

“Oh come on, ‘people’s lives’, you don’t need to be so dramatic. In this day and age., Well, at least in many places., You know.,  Gays are almost considered.,”

“It’s not about what is or isn’t gay. Answer me this; is masturbation gay?”

“No, of course not.”

“Why not?”

Suddenly the line, now questioned, appeared arbitrary and rather too-conveniently accepted; Sally waited – then continued;

“When I say people’s lives I mean Yours, Mine, Rose and Jack’s.”


“Yeah that’s what I’m trying to tell you. Events are coming into alignment and I can see how it goes down so you got to trust me; you got to write about Juan Costellos so he can go back in time.”

Sally hands me a flash-drive holding some PDF files.

“That’s all the info you need to write Jalapenos and Beer. It tells you about San Lobos, New Mexico and Juan Costellos - including some jokes. Now where’s Rose?”

“She took off work early to sign up for that online course, to bleach and wax assholes.”

“Wax and bleach. And we have to stop her.”


“It’s just a path to indentured servitude, stuck with that school loan she’ll be sold-off to bleach and wax sultan ass in Dubai.”

“Wax and bleach.”

“Not in Dubai.”

So we rushed as fast as we could against time up a block to the bus stop to wait on the six-thirty which if on-time was fifteen minutes away.

While we waited Sally further explained that Juan Costellos had modified stock trading technology from the future that could send transactions faster than the speed of light, and he could use these transmissions to break away from a fixed timeline and carry his manifestations parallel to any timeline in any direction. And he needed to go back in time and destroy the evil multi-billionaire Jon Santo and stop the genetically modified jalapeno peppers threatening his existence.

“But what does that have to do with..,”

“Juan Costellos stumbled upon the secret to immortality or at least a very pro-longed life with the combination of Jalapenos and Beer but his future is now threatened by genetically modified jalapeno peppers. So he has to go back in time and destroy Jon Santo – needs to end it before it begins. Cause if he’s not alive in the future he won’t be able to go back into the past and if he doesn’t go back into the past he won’t have much of a future and you’re the spark. It all starts with a thought.”

“How’s he going to destroy the evil multi-billionaire Jon Santo?”

“By killing Mrs. O’Leary’s cow and stopping the Great Chicago Fire of 1871.”

“I don’t understand.”

“Doesn’t matter. Past and future –- it’s all bullshit – it’s never not now - future desires are seeded by past disappointment set-up by future desires. You’re problem exists now, Rose is in danger now and you can only save her now by writing Jalapenos and Beer.”

“What does all this have to do with Rose?”

“Because Blind Ambition Technology had monsantoed farms creating a disproportionate amount of transsexuals, largest per capita in the world to feed a budding slave trade.”
“Oh yeah, didn’t they do a NCIS episode on that?”

Rose, not hip to the reference thinking it un-hip, continues to fill me in as we; in a desperate attempt to beat time and save Rose; hi-jacked the six-thirty over the objections of the bus driver who needed to contact his superiors. But then Ruth, a very old lady, needed to get off in front of the pharmacy at the next stop and she was really old and out of Lyrica - starting to detox - so we had to stop; and since we stopped for her it was only fair – considering a hijacker’s vulnerability to mutiny - that we stop for everyone else before our stop which was a half-hour later and two blocks from the apartment on Fountain which we ran uphill all the way followed by TSA and a DHS swat van trying to justify justifications.

I stop, turn, “Hey what the fuck’s TSA doing here? We’re miles from an airport!”
From a bull-horn I hear, “TSA jurisdiction covers blah, blah, blah., up to and including covert inspection of moving subjects on sidewalks.,”

As I turned to run from scattered live rounds - serpentine style – I thought to myself,

“That’s bullshit – covert? - That can’t possibly be true.”

We just barely escape a barrage of bullets as we bust our way into the vacant apartment – Rose wasn’t there. So we flee/fall out the bathroom window, climb over a fence and up into the hills; away from the now bullet ridden building and as we rounded the corner I heard an explosion – idiots shot a gas line.


“So the evil multi-billionaire Jon Santo, along with The Bates Foundation, are behind the whole thing; their the cornerstone, man.” I’m telling Jack over drinks at the Slam Drunk.

“But I don’t understand.” Jack was losing it to synthetic alkaloids and cheap Ouzo.

“That school Rose wants to sign up for.., Remember?”

“Something about ass?”

“Yeah, TFA, it’s just a front; funding the cover-up of the manipulation of crow meat production influencing crow meat futures.”

“Crow meat future? I didn’t know crow meat had a future.,”

“Not a future - futures. And where do you think our number two supply of crow meat comes from?”

“I don’t.,”

“That’s right. So under the cover of humanitarian intervention they fucked these people’s shit up. Farmers burned and hung themselves till dead over the loss of their farms; while their sons - as so many of the now displaced boys and young men had been severely affected by exposure to gender-bender insecticides Blind Ambition Technology was spraying provided by the evil Jon Santo and The Bates Foundation – they were growing breasts and shit – fucking induced gynecomastia. So you know Nike wasn’t going to exploit them - worried about a boycott - losing the feet of major religious groups who have no problem with slavery but no tolerance for sexual ambiguity. These mutant transvestites.., to the curb and in search of work; were hustled, kidnapped and otherwise persuaded into a slave trade to wax and bleach assholes.”

“I’ve been thinking about becoming a farmer. I could grow..,” We were interrupted by a muffled ringtone - pirated and outdated - from Jack’s back pocket.

My phone was dead so Rose called and told Jack, who told me, that her apartment building had been blown up by terrorists and they already got the guys; two dead at the scene; but she couldn’t go back, “it’s a crime scene. And they’re ransacking apartments and tazing the neighbors” – collective punishment to send a message.

As I’m ordering another round of drinks I tell Jack to tell her to go to my place and I’ll meet up with her there – she’s got a key.

I slam a beer and says,

“They’re selling this patriotic crap and a lot of people are going to get screwed. I mean just think about it; how’s Rose