Tuesday, April 30, 2013

It's A Bad Bad Bad Bad World


Let’s just say my neighbor is lucky her daughter isn’t living next to a pedophile. 

For three years I used to live across from an eighty-year old widow who would drop off a weekly loaf of homemade bread, and often ask if I could turn my TV volume down after six p.m.  Sadly those days had a deadline, and that delicate Grandmother decided to give in to a stroke to go hang out with her husband upstairs, only to be replaced by a family who would be considered “high-class” in West Virginia.

When I say “high-class”, I mean they have a streaming feed of the Maury Povich show running 24-hours a day in their living room, meanwhile their five-year old daughter wearing the same dirty clothes every morning rolls laps around our street every waking minute on her razor. 

Sometimes I actually do miss that old Grandma.

Saturday afternoon I pulled into my driveway transporting a load of grocery bags, gym clothes, golf clubs and a bicycle into my house, only to find that crust-covered five-year old doing her usual routine on the scooter, not caring about anything in the world whatsoever, as the majority of most five year olds do.  Ignoring the girl I began to unload my car, when out of nowhere the dirt-smudged little Cindy Lou Who stopped me in my tracks.

Cindy Lou: “You have some pretty flowers on your lawn.”

Me: “Uh…yep.  They’re called dandelions.  You can pick as many of them as you want.”

For a moment I was a bit nervous about even responding to this little tyke.  After all, isn’t the NUMBER ONE rule of parenting to NEVER talk to strangers? And here I was, talking to a little girl I didn’t know at all! I was going to be in so much trouble if my Mom ever found out. 

Grabbing a handful of weeds, she then walked over to my open doorway and poked her head into my house as I unloaded my groceries.       

Cindy Lou: “Your house is different than mine.  Your house is clean.”

Ok, now I’m a little freaked out.  I have never before made eye contact with this little girl, and now she is analyzing the layout of my front room.  Where did I put my pepper spray?

Cindy Lou: “Can I come in your house?”

This is the part where I look up from my paper bags and pause for station identification with a confused/perplexed/WTF look on my face.  Something isn’t right about this.  She’s a little “too” comfortable than most five-year olds are with their giant big kid neighbors who wear beards.  Is this is a setup? Why the heck would Chris Hansen and a camera crew be hiding out in the bushes trying to fool potential pedophiles? And who the curse word thought it would be a good idea to shoot “How To Catch A Predator” in St. George, Utah?

Me: “No, Cindy Lou. You go on home now, you hear?”

Cut to yesterday afternoon as The Rhinestone Cowboy and myself were strolling down Fremont Street in old Las Vegas, killing time before a college fair. To my left were a handful of muffintop baldies walking into a gentlemen’s club holding giant margaritas.  To my right was a set of bike cops asking a beggar why he thought stealing Crown Royal was such a good idea. In front of me a young woman wearing nothing but leather chaps and a napkin danced on the main stage while a horny Grandma in a wheelchair whistled at her. On the ground were pamphlets full of naked women who thought putting stars over their nipples was a great career move.   

A dirty beard smelling like marijuana and Jack Daniels bumped into me.    

“Heya man, 62 cents man, that’sa all I need. 62 cents.  You wanna helpa brotha out?”

The humanitarian inside me reached into my pocket.  The AA President inside me ignored the man and kept walking. 

The world some of us live in is a bubble.  A giant, protected, confined, misconstrued, I-just-won-the-lottery-for-living-locations bubble. A bubble that the majority of the time is ungratefully forgotten because of the sheltered set of blinders being placed over our eyes.  Anyone want to take a gander at what the “real world” looks like? Just take a quick road trip to the modern-day Sodom 110 miles south of my house; population: a hell of a lot more than the 600-1200 who got turned into salt back in the Bible.   

Had the dirt-smudged Cindy Lou Who gone poking her head into some random stranger’s house down there, well, lets just say that Chris Hansen would have had plenty of clients for the next few episodes. 

It’s a bad bad bad bad world out there kids, I tell you.  And sometimes it runs chills down the back of my legs to think the big man upstairs made every single disrespectful, ugly, drug-addicted, porn-smothered, booze-ingested, filth-covered human being that dots this giant ball we all live on. 

What’s even more unnerving, is that I think he loves them all too.   

What do you think?

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