“You retired?” … “Hell no. I’m in My Prime.”

3-The-Great-Gatsby_edited

This is a long one. Sorry. Reading these is
it’s … uh. It’s a rollercoaster through my brain.

You start at the top of the hill, put up your
hands and enjoy the ride on the way down. So…

Memorial Day honors veterans who
died defending our right to decide what we

say and how we behave, yes? That’s freedom, right?
Right, so if I choose to celebrate their life

and why they chose to die, why is that not right?
Those people died so we wouldn’t have to be

miserable today (or any other).
They died so we wouldn’t have to listen to

some random, clueless stranger going, “Uh, no.
NO! Nuh uh! It’s this way or it’s no way, jerk!”

All due respect, no it is not. That is called
Facism. Is that why our soldiers died? No.

Ironically, the answer is really yes.
They died fighting facism. What’s that line from

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off? “I don’t believe in…”
My full name? Thomas Robert Sorrell. Jr.

Today I gave my step-father a birthday
card. It had a owl on a branch. Cards these days

really are lazy. When’s the last time you found
a good one at a Walgreens or C.V.S.?

Anyway, it made him cry – the big softie.
And he called me by his old nickname for me.

“TomBob,” That’s all the man said. Later we bought
a copy of the original Gone in

60 Seconds, starring … uh. I can’t even …
The lead role on the back says Elanor. Weird.

I guess the car is the star. How about that?
This Elanor is from the ’70s, though.

It’s not the GT version from sixty-five.
It’s a black and gold Mach One. On the bottom

of the box, it reads, “Let the wrecking begin.
93 cars destroyed in the crash-crushing

car-slamming 40 minute chase scene. Fully
restored and digitally remastered, wide

screen. 25th Anniversary Edi-
shun. It slams you on a rocket ride, blah-blah-

blah and yadda-yadda-yadda. Yabba-dab-
ba-do, yeah? Little dab will do ya? That’s Jim-

me Buffet shaving his pencil thin mustache
with a hot foamy bit of cream on his lip.

You don’t need much rum in Key West. Just a sip.
Anyway, I wanted to say Happy Birth-

day to my old friend Steve Lyninger.
That’s pronounced Lynn-in-ger. I remember how

to pronounce an old swordmaster’s name too. Bob
Anderson. He worked with Errol Flynn, a man

who went from hero to goat in the blink of
two beautiful blue eyes, like the ones that stare

down like the eyes of God in The Great Gatsby.
Sorry, Leo … didn’t watch the movie. I

am busy trying to live it. Picture me
in a suit, standing awkwardly near a stone

fireplace, nervously knocking things over
because I don’t know what to do with my hands.

I’m just waiting for Daisy, hoping no one
kills me before I can at least talk to her

face to face, and see those lovely eyes gazing
into mine once more, with feeling. I love her.

I love God. That’s where this path has led me. It’s
a figment. A phantom. Second-cousin to

Harvey the Rabbit, that old Jimmy Stewart
flick. Personally I always preferred It’s

a Wonderful Life. The knob that came off the
stairs. Bert and Ernie – the cop and cap driver

serenading George and Mary Bailey on
their honeymoon in that old, broken-down house.

Zuzu’s petals, “Every time a Bell rings an
Angel gets its wings,” right? What’s that Bob Dylan

song? Ring them Bells? Silver Bells? Sterling Silver?
Or is it a golden bell and a pomme-

horse to do gymnastics on? A man’s event,
only because of potential wardrobe mal-

functions and machines, just staring.
Ever seen 8MM, with Nic Cage?

I have. It’s shit you can’t unsee, like 50
Shades of Gray and anything on MTV.

50 Cent, though? He’s a wordsmith like me. Yeah.
I made fun of him one time and he just laughed

me off like I was nothing … because I was
nothing at that time. I was a fat, lazy

piece of shit who had to heal. I finally
know why I went through it, though. The only way

out is through. It’s a hard road to walk, but I
promise the man any of you knew is gone.

The water weight has been shed. I no longer
carry it with me in a wheelbarrow or

on a tray. Hey Trey … if you run for office
I’m telling everyone about your Dollies.

You stole those from Meghan because her step dad
doesn’t know when to keep his big mouth shut, right?

She didn’t do anything to you or yours.
Neither did I, right? Other than stand up for

my wife? Think about that, brother … who could love
her more than a man who will flip out on you like

Nic Cage in Con Air, in the beginning. You
beat the Hell out of the Devil that day, right?

Me too … but I did it in my own way. May
we bury the hatchet and share a beer? I

don’t care about money. It’s the principle
here. We’re adults, aren’t we? I don’t want to

put you “on blast,” as the kids say, but the worst
thing you can do is say nothing if you read

this all the way through. I mean, come on, man. We
mostly feel the same, I think. We just see things

from a different point of view. I respect
yours. Can you do the same? If not you’re not fit

to hold a position of authority
in this place. So … are you? Are you? Answer me!

Tell me why we should vote for you, because if
you convince me to help you … I will. Megh too.

Flyers and bullhorns, like The Blues Brothers, like…
“Hey folks! We’re the Good Old … Blues … Brothers … Boys … Band.”

Or something like that, right? That chicken wire
was worthless ’til Tammy Wynette’s song saved the

day. Elwood said it. His real name’s Dan Ackroyd.
You knew that, right? Me too. Don’t be afraid, bro.

Every word I say these days is true. I
don’t hate you. I don’t hate anyone. This is

just a role-playing video game from here
to eternity. “I’m an old soul.” I’ve had

so many people tell me that, but I pay
it no mind. Death is coming. I know it’s true.

Maybe they’ll loosen my front left tire or
maybe both, so the flammable load I hold

will ignite and trap me in a burning cage
on the side of the road near a Marathon.

Station! Remember those twins from Bill & Ted’s?
In the bogus journey they took, everything

was a little off, yeah? Why? Because they died.
It happens to all of us, yeah? That and tax…

YOU: please visit. John Lennon’s old car is here.
“Wheels up” is a hell of slogan, you know?

You can meet Megh, Will and Melissa, Josh and
Blake, Big Tom, Jimmy, Brundon and anyone

else you’ll let me introduce you to. I like
all of these people. I swear it’s true. Let me

show you what the stars look like when they fall on
Pensacola Beach into the soft sugar sand.

BOB? I’m still waiting to hear from you about
your unused lines from Leopard Skin Pillbox Hat.

You know the ones I’m talking about, don’t you?
Meghan does too, you know? It’s true. It’s all true.

What’s that line of yours? I know you hate this, but
“You said you knew me and I believed you did.”

Oh! Look at that, Bob. 11 syllables.
No kidding? That line too? I’m just talking, man.

But it’s like I’m talking directly to you…
“Once upon a time you dressed so fine, threw the…”

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