Tuesday, June 06, 2006

No Sympathy for the Devil
... But I Wasn't Late for Work, Either

Normally, Tuesday mornings are pretty boring. Get up, drink my five cups of too - damned - strong, black - as - death coffee, eat my Lean Pockets, forget to shave, etc...

But this morning was different.

I woke up and realized Satan was sitting at the foot of my bed, reading the Cincinnati Enquirer.

"What the fuck, man...I'm trying to sleep."

"Dude, lighten up. I'm the Prince of Fucking Darkness... and I'm bored."

"No, seriously. What the hell are you doing in my townhouse?"

The Devil lit up a plump Honduran Maduro and sipped on the last of my Wild Turkey 101.

"Pfft...cable's out at my place," Mr. Morning Fucking Star explained. "Plus the old lady's got her Anti-Christian Ladies' Brunch this morning, the kids are screaming, and I think I've got hemorrhoids."

"Dude, I've got to be at work in, like, two three hours..." I explained. "And that is the cheapest smelling cigar I've smelled in years. Whadidya do? Steal that off a hobo?"

I quickly pulled on some underwear, not completely comfortable lying in bed naked with the Devil staring at my junk.

"Dude, where the fuck did ya get the banana sling there?" Lucifer said, staring over the Sports section. "The whole mankini thing is so not you."

"A friend."

"Oh yeah. I remember her. Do you remember when she used to --"

I interrupted him with a grunt.

"Dude, you were such a total bastard back then," Lucifer continued. "You used to ruin more good lingerie than a closet full of moths. C'mon... admit you miss me..."

"Dude, I really don't want to talk about it." I said. "Besides, don't you have something better to do than critique my choice of underwear?"

"Well, I do have that new Left Behind book launch later this morning, a couple of preachers to corrupt before 10ish, and my usual afternoon German scat porn viewing with my boy Karl out in Washington..."

"Karl who?"

"Oh you know I can't say. But, well...you don't think the political party goons have box seats in Heaven, do you?"

Satan winks. I hate it when he winks.

He follows me downstairs, through the living room, into the kitchen. As I'm fixing the coffee, Don Diablo's stealing Mp3s off my laptop. He walks over to the stereo and puts on Robert Johnson's King of the Delta Blues Singers.

I tried ignoring the motherfucker, but, well, it's damned near impossible to ignore a huge reddish man in a white suit, a virtual Tom Wolfe/John Waters clone who stinks of brimstone.

"So what the fuck do you want from me?" I ask.

"I want your first-born child's immortal soul."

Donnie D. just stares at me with this serious look on his face, then bursts into laughter.

"Dude, that's like so 1654. Besides, your soul ain't worth shit on eBay."

I'm not amused.

Lucifer walks into the kitchen, I hear the microwave door open, and helplessly watch as the Fallen One devours my breakfast.

"I need you to do me a favor"

"Oh, for fuck's sake...what? I'll do whatever you want...just leave me alone already."

The Devil picks up my coffee cup and takes a big sip of my first cup of the day. When he sits the mug down, I notice chunks of food floating in there.

Hell hath no fury like the Devil's backwash.

Satan let loose a ferocious belch before he spoke again.

"I need you to go back to being that fucking asshole we all knew and admired down in the Pit. We had so much hope for you, actually. You used to be such a fun guy."

I got up and poured myself a new cup of joe, in a clean mug.

"Remember that girl with the George Clinton dreadlocks in the port-o-john in Morro Bay? That hot waitress in Baton Rouge?

"How about that 43-year-old? You totally knew she was married, man - don't lie. The tanline on her ring finger, the "you're my son's age" slip-up, and, oh yeah, how can I forget, the fact that you'd just been shot down by her daughter...that was VENGEFUL SHIT..

I turned on the T.V., put on Headline News, and tried to ignore Old Scratch.

"C'mon. Remember T__? The hood of that old Dodge pick-up you had? Back in '97? Right on the corner of 23rd Avenue and 12th Street in Greeley, all those people watching... that was pretty cool."

My ears perk up a bit. Recognizing this old trick, I get up and change the CD in the stereo. Good - the fucker forgot to take out Live at Folsom Prison.

Don Diablo stretches out on the couch, relights his Maduro, and stares at the television.

"Oh, and we can't forget about M____. Man, talk about a firecracker. I still can't believe you're STILL embarrassed that your roommate caught you guys using HER fuzzy handcuffs in HER bathroom....that was almost ten years ago, man..."

I can't take it anymore.

"Dude, either tell me what you want or get the flying fuck out of my life. I lived it and I don't need a history lesson from a wannabe antagonist. Go bug John Milton or something."

The Devil just laughed.

"You know, I laughed when you told that girl a few weeks ago that you don't really care about sex anymore," Donnie D. said. "That was the funniest damn thing I've heard come out of your mouth in months.

"Clock's ticking, my man. You're closer to 40 than you are to 14. And I know your sorry ass...."

I finally decided to do what I usually do when the Devil comes a-callin'. I picked up my mankini-covered ass and left him flipping through the channels, trying to decide between watching infomercials or VH1.

I went up to the bathroom, took a shower, intentionally forgot to shave, and went to work. And it was a very good day, actually.

Cross-posted at The Troll Potty Reader - One of the online homesteads of Stephi, winner of the 2006 Barbara E. Nicholson Prize for Best Undergraduate Essay in Gender Studies. Congrats!

Her choreopoem is found here.

Anyone wishing to join the TPR blog...er...cross-cultural brainfuck...um...blournal..., drop me a line.


cooper said...

I loved that story Zenpro; it made me laugh.

I'm going to check out your friend.

Yeah and anyone wanting to post at Darfur: An Unforgivable Hell on Earth - all raise your hands at once please.

cooper said...

Hey that's a pretty cool place Zenpro.

Ogbuefi Stephi said...

thanks for the mention, j.

and i loved your post. made me laugh as well...

totally didn't realize what the fuss was about today, then i realized...


Miz BoheMia said...

Great story and if there is any truth to it when reading between the lines, from one who knows some corners of the Devil's world quite well, glad you beat the voices and made the best of your day!

Bohemians everywhere applaud you amigo mio!

The ZenFo Pro said...

Hey, glad to have entertained you...I've been feeling lately like I've let my more artistic writing - the pressure valve stuff I send to lit mags - fall along the wayside. Totally forgot about the TPR, which was created at Northern Colorado 10 years ago as less o a zine and more as an artistic release.

I may actually have a peice or two to contribute to Darfur, actually....hmmm

Hey, no problem! That was awesome. I had no clue, and, lol, I feel so downright dirty for not mentioning it earlier...

After rereading the poem, I was actually inspired to write this essay, btw. If for no other reason than to remind you that, well, life's an adventure and sometimes we all walk into those soul-searching, gut-wrenching relationship-traps.

Lol...you remember that post I promised ya? Lol... well, this is a bit of a creative way to get around the whole "parental advisory-explicit content" thing... I figure anybody who's been through similar shit with internal-demons should have NO PROBLEM WHATSOEVER reading between the lines

Lol, the Don Diablo character developed a few years ago in a past offline poetry/performance art life as a way to channel some of those memories, to demonstrate the war between personal growth and guilt for past sins. This s the tame one... ;) I'm still pissed that an ex here in Oxford "borrowed" my Don Diablo Tales notebooks and never returned them after the relationship ended. Grrrr...

That still pisses in my cornflakes. First gal I ever let borrow one, and she steals it as a frigging souvenir.

I've been working on a chapbook e-book ed. for years now...I may just post it this summer, if I can find the right web hosting service...

cooper said...

That would be nice Jason. ;0

I like that troll potty thing. I'm going to out alink up to it when I get less lazy. It isinteresting.

Smurf said...

Great reading... you have definitely gotten your sense of humor back.. I really noticed it when you called me on your birthday and I see it mixed in with the trail through your history... 23/12th... isn't that near where Fat Albert's used to be? lol... I will not delve you did great and Chewie, Kfig, you and me have lots of stuff on eachother... although you already revealed my most embarrassing one... the cucumber/penis thing... anyways... this was an exceptional piece.

KFigment said...

What can I say if you every want to run for office you will have to pay me off bigtime. I know in great detail every one of those stories and yes I still haven't gotten a new set of handcuffs out of you;).

I needed a laugh and that stumble down memory lane is always good for one. Never change you rock!!!

kT said...

Well, unlike, apparently, everyone else commenting, I don't know you. I've only be reading here for a few weeks. But this piece is funny, relatable, and engaging -- and while it may be based on your personal experiences, is not limited by relying on unexplained stories.

The more I read, the more I need to come back for more.

shayna said...



I do love to read about your devilish side... :)

Cowgirl said...

Interesting post.

The devil wears a white suit? Hmm.

The ZenFo Pro said...

Lol...I've got a few scraps left over from my research...eventually, I'll get to it :)

Me? Lose my sense of humor?

Lol... actually, near the Old Chicago, across from the mall...

Lol...no worries there. I'd rather eat my own ass than actually become a politician :)

The handcuffs? Oh my! You're actually claiming them? On a blog?

Hehehe...now who's got the blackmail ... ;)

Yeah, this is a strange blog, eh? There are folks who read this who know me offline, but the vast majority have never met me. No worries. I try to keep the inside joking to a minimum, but its occassionally difficult to do so when, well, the subject matter includes shared memories...

Many thanks for reading and for the compliments! :)

Blogger's been a bitch and a half lately.

My devilish side? I have a angelic side, too, right?


Actually, he only wears white during the summer. He has a pinstripe he's fond of wearing in the winter months ;)

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