Has anyone watched that new TV show called “Eli Stone” about a lawyer with a brain aneurysm, who formerly was a total asshole and made lots and lots of money for his law firm by steam rolling over human decency, but then discovered that his new role in life was to help the little guy. His change in behavior comes in the form of outrageously strange visions that no one else sees, like bi-planes swooping down on him on a San Francisco street a’la “North by Northwest”, him opening an office door and suddenly being hit by an ocean wave and first and foremost, a rocking church choral group abruptly popping up in courtrooms, law offices, singing spirituals that are supposed to give him a clue about what is right and wrong.
Even though I don’t watch much TV, I particularly like shows like this because 1) they’re whimsical 2) they have heart 3) someone is giving someone a message on how to change their lives for the better. Oh, and I also have whimsical flights of fancy when I’m out in the real world.
I have written about my repeated fantasy of going into some bleak, depressing store like the Salvation Army and hearing Aretha Franklin singing “Respect” over the loudspeaker (Oh, the irony for people in the Salvation Army hearing a song like that). Because suddenly, upon hearing that music, I’ll suddenly start doing a little sassy Aretha walk. And nearby clerks will suddenly be holding up hangers like microphones and become my backup singers. And then all the customers, who were formerly just people sadly pawing through the linty, torn, out dated clothes along the racks will suddenly burst into a major Motown number in sequined jumpsuits. And then, of course, I’ll jump up on the counter and finish things off with my soaring vocals to thunderous applause with the total flair and polish of the superstar I really am.
Unfortunately, these fantasies have been coming closer and closer together in recent weeks. I mean I’m gonna have to call in Bob Fosse from beyond the grave soon, you know, since how can you really do a big musical number without Fosse.
So do I have a brain aneurysm or am I just severely depressed. Wow. What a fun choice.
I pulled out of the yuppie grocery store the other day. I had turned on the radio and the Bee Gee’s “Stayin’ Alive” was playing. I decided to turn it up. Blast from the past and all. But I found the lyrics a little troubling. Since this is all I heard:
Just the “Life goin’ nowhere. Somebody help me yeah. I’m stain’ alive” part over and over and over. Nothing else. WTF? Was I having one of those “Eli Stone” moments? Because I had it turned as loud as I could in my car and then it ended abruptly right when I drove by “A”s office. He’s on my way home. (No, I don’t make special trips by his office, despite what certain people think).
I’ve had a rough week. Food stamps were taken away from me, because: 1st woman on phone: We screwed up and lost your file. 2nd woman 10 minutes later:“YOU screwed up. You didn’t fill out your budget form (which, whoops, wasn’t included in what THEY sent me, but pshaw, its only $100 out of a poor person’s budget. Hee hee. We’ll just go all official and make the pee-on feel like maggot poop on the bottom of our shoe and then they’ll back down). I mean it was a bad enough going in the office and having the guy at the counter say I wasn’t in the computer. And then next being bitch-slapped by some toady woman (worker 8) because I hadn’t completed the form correctly. And then next being told by Worker 59B that I was rude when I said I had done everything correctly and yet I had to fill out the form for a third time because evidently I had committed a mortal sin when I had filled it out in pencil because according to him “No form in pencil will ever be accepted on my watch.” What are you? A fucking soldier guarding the Afghanistan border?
Truth was though, I was too tired to fight. I had just fought a three day battle with AOL They had taken over $100 out of my bank account over several months without my permission. And all I could do was talk to was some guy named Abu from India. Does anyone else see the irony of AMERICA Online being manned by people from India? I couldn’t understand him and I was unable to get the charges reversed. I did leave a complaint on a Consumer website. I then talked to a guy at Time Warner where I now have my service and he said he had so much trouble with AOL taking money out of his account after he left, he had to change his bank account number.
So I’ve also had lots of other things going on, some that I won’t get into. But they are all crushing. I even ended up calling a crisis help line last weekend at 1:30 in the morning. Just couldn’t handle it anymore. I finally went to my medical doctor yesterday. Lots of anxieties, aches, shortness of breath, sharp jabbing pain in my neck and chin. I was sure I was on the verge of another heart “situation” like a year ago January. I think she could see that I was just mainly severely depressed. So she hooked me up with a psychiatrist who I guess will help me with meds sometime next week.
I think perhaps the weirdest thing that happened to me this last week though, was something that sounds like it fell directly out of an “Eli Stone” episode. I’ve been so anxious about my health, that I’ve been trying to sleep in my bed, but its too far from my phone, so I’ve been sleeping in the living room on the couch. And the word “sleep” is relative. Its been sketchy at best, especially the night before I was waiting for my phone interview with the idiot food stamp guy the next morning. I just could not sleep. I’d sleep for like a half hour…wake up. Sleep. Wake up. Finally at 3 a.m. I just decided to grab my remote control and see what was on TV… at 3 a.m. I’ve never turned on the TV at that time before, so I had no idea what to expect. So click:
ABC News: Two Jennifers were giving the news at 3 a.m. against a black backdrop. They were both very young… actually a little too young to be reading news at a major network, I thought. It was so strange I even began wondering if this was beaming out live or not. They were both impossibly pretty and had flippy hair. I don’t remember what the first story was but I definitely remember the second one. The fact that the Pope at the Vatican had just released Seven New Commandments.
I was laying in the couch in the dark, thinking, now that’s weird. How can the Pope do that? Doesn’t there have to be like a burning bush or something? So Jennifer #1 started reading them off and there was a graphic behind her. Can I remember them? Not really, it was 3 a.m. But there were two in the middle that I definitely do.
They were kinda informal, these NEW Seven Commandments. None of that “Thou Shalt Not…” stuff. Because the two that I remembered said that it was a sin to have “Obscene Wealth” and that it was a sin to “Cause Poverty”.
And its funny, because both newscaster girls started to giggle like giddy teenagers when they were through reading them. They even wondered aloud how much money was considered obscene and why would it be considered obscene to have money. They were probably just wondering how many pairs of Manolo Blahniks they could own before they had to go to confession.
So anyways, the next day I had the phone interview with 57B. It went poorly. I lost everything. Afterwards, trying to blank things out, I went on the internet to research the new Seven Commandments. After all, I had seen it on ABC News!! First I Googled “New Commandments” “Seven Commandments”, “Pope + Commandments”. I certainly came up with some funny things like Commandments for Driving like “Don’t kill people’ and then a humor website that included the commandment “Thou shalt not bounce a psycho”. Dang and that’s what I was gonna do tonight after my art class.
Anyways, I finally went to the official Vatican website…AND….nothing about the New Seven Commandments.
So….? Ummm??? Heh.. I guess there ISN’T any new Seven New Commendments and I was just having some funky-ass, Charlie Kauffmanesque movie dream about waking up and receiving Commandments from two Jennifers on ABC News. Were they my Burning Bush? Do you think I know? I’m the one dreaming about biblical things as filtered through “Girls Gone Wild”? I know one thing. I definitely need to see a psychiatrist for new meds.