This is why I will always be a failure. It is nine thirty on a Friday night and I sit typing. If I was typing the great American novel it be one thing but I'm not. I'm sitting at a laptop in a Shad Landing hooded sweatshirt with a picture of a buck on it that seems to look up at me in disgust. For the sake of conversation I have given this buck a name. For his brief foray in this story his name will be Corporal Ferguson. Now Corporal Ferguson was never in his deer lair on any Friday night watching Everybody Loves Raymond or whatever deer do in their lair. He was out in the woods running, ramming horns with other bucks, or slipping the stiff love cyclops to a buxom doe during the rutting. I say "was" because I am assuming with all the running he ran into the middle of the road and had been hit by car or ran into a round from a drunken crackers firearm of convenience. Either way now he is just the bloodstains on the roof of the car who hit him or the pickup of the man who shot him because in the Shad Landing area everyone is going to tie that beast down to transport to the taxidermist then the head to the wall of their trailer. For the car driver needs something to make up for front end damage and the drunken hunter needs something for dignity he lost soaking himself in deer urine to sit in that deer stand all day and the dignity he’s going to loose when the doctor tells him he has lost his left testicle to the frost bite gotten from soaking himself in deer urine and sitting in that deer stand all day. The hunter can not fix that front end damage. Anyway, Corporal Ferguson is dead but he died of a life lived.
I tried to live tonight. I was going to try and mix it up. I was going to try and talk to people. I went to an art show just down the street. I put on my conversation pieces and made my way down the road. After getting to the show I took my lap carefully looking at all the art at times interested and at times not. Then I made my exit. As I walked away I thought of the things I would have said if I had talked to anyone. I would have said something about how I had been in Penthouse. I’d tell them of a Shad Landing sweatshirt my father gave me that I wouldn’t be caught dead in. I’d compare this show to the ones in college where I’d go just for the free food and booze. This made me smile. I didn’t eat or drink anything at this show. Much like I never took part in the free food and booze at the shows in college. I was in my dorm room wandering why the groove was never in my heart as it wasn’t in my heart in elementary school as I wrote in my Garfield journal with Odie’s accusing eyes looking at me, my red-orange crayon, and my embittered red-orange words, “WIL I uLWays BE a FAYLYeR.”
Tonight the ghost of Corporal Ferguson wonders how a picture of a deer on a sweatshirt gets so much face time in a blog then calmly answers, ”Yes David... you will.”
At ease, Corporal. At ease.