An open letter from a suspicious package…

His name was Carl. That's right, he had a name. NOPD blew him up ten minutes later. RIP
That bag’s name was Carl. That’s right, he had a name. NOPD blew him up ten minutes later. RIP Carl…

Good morning.

Please allow me to introduce myself, I’m a suspicious package. It would seem my brothers and I are causing a bit of a problem in the Crescent City these days. At the WWII Museum, at the Superdome, on Canal, on Poydras, on Rampart: though my first impulse might be to apologize for the actions of my wayward brothers, I can’t. I won’t. Not today, not ever.

You see, there once was a time where my brothers and I could be simply left alone to enjoy the sun, relax while holding a good book or maybe some gym clothes and we could do it alone. By ourselves. Everyone needs alone time right? Well, since that horrible day twelve years or so ago, it would seem that everybody and their mother feels we need to constantly be chaperoned. I mean, chaperoned all the time. Every minute of every day unless we’re tucked neatly into the corner of someone’s apartment or perhaps in the closet, a school or gym locker, anywhere out of sight and out of the sun.

It’s a fucking drag.

Seriously.

How would you feel if you always had to be slung over somebody’s back or swinging wildly from someone’s hands, knocking into shit, each and every time you were out in public. Don’t lie…you wouldn’t like it all. In fact, I’ll go on record right now saying that each and every one of you reading this would fucking hate it.

So why are we supposed to enjoy it so much?

Because we’re supposedly inanimate objects? Because we don’t have feelings, worries or concerns? Because we don’t like to be left alone in peace, maybe over coffee? A drink? Or as mentioned before, out in the sun, enjoying the heat, trying to suck up a little life from the warmth of the day?

Don’t tell me to get over it.

You wanna know what happens sometimes when one of us decides to take a risk and venture forth without accompaniment? I’ll tell you what, some asshole in a police uniform starts to attack us with robots. That’s right, your Terminator nightmares can be the reality for some of us…and what do those robots occasionally do? Sometimes they blow us the fuck up!

Sucks. It sucks a lot.

So keeping all that in mind, here’s a thought: maybe the package isn’t the one that’s suspicious. Maybe the suspicious one is actually…you. Let that sink in for a moment.

You are the suspicious one.

Why else would you call the police every time one of our owners lets us have a few moments of idle time, even if it’s done by accident? You say it’s a  vigilance thing, uh-huh. Beware of the terrorists, okay. Still, you gotta ask yourself who would be so demented as to intentionally allow one of us some free time in this day and age? Why, and for what possible reason? Oh, but I’ll tell you. Beyond the occasional absent-mindedness, there are certain criminal elements in society who have learned just how suspicious you all can be, and that you project your suspicions upon us, the package. They know what a distraction we are, that if we’re dropped on a corner the NOPD will get called, everyone will freak the fuck out and the majority of the police will respond to stare all loony at us while those who left us there are free to do whatever it is they didn’t want the police or people to see outside of the now cordoned off zone. That’s right, too often these days we’re just a convenient decoy to lure the police and press away from some of your brethren’s more dastardly deeds, such as ripping off your mortgages, stealing your pensions, cutting food stamps to the poor, killing off your schools, raising the rates on flood insurance and raising rents while destroying your public hospital systems ability to treat the poor both medically and emotionally.

How long do you think it’ll take before this trickles down and would be drug dealers and/or assailants realize that if they want to assault people in one block or deal on the corners of another all they need do is leave one of us, a suitcase, a backpack or a briefcase unattended on a bench two or three blocks away?

I know, it’s crazy right?

Nope…you are.

Crazy nervous…so many are hyped up by breathless news stories and stupid action flicks and lingering governmental-hyper-vigilance-report-your-neighbor campaigns. You need proof? Okay. How many surveillance cameras did you get spotted by today…and you didn’t even notice, did you? Of course not. Now you’re all way too used to that kind of thing. Warrant-less wiretapping? National Security letters to Google? Eric Holder accessing reporters’ e-mails without their knowledge? The attack on whistle-blowers? The militarization of police departments?  Yeah, all of it is so commonplace nobody blinks an eye anymore. Freedoms are being whittled away by the National Security apparatus, including your own NOPD, who thanks to a ruling today by the US Supreme Court can now take a DNA sample and store it away if you ever get arrested…that’s right, a DNA database on you.

That’s what’s crazy.

But hey, it’s your world isn’t it? We just get carried through it so go ahead, be afraid…but dammit, can’t you give us a break sometimes? Not all of us are all that suspicious and none of us like it when the bomb squad gets called in to blow our ass up all over the street. It’s positively inhumane.

Okay…I know.

Alright.

I know…I need to be fair and up front here.

Therefore, I feel I must also address those packages out there that may very well be “suspicious,” that one out of a hundred thousand, a million, a billion of us packages who might actually deserve such a label.

You! Knock it the fuck off!

Really, you too are responsible, albeit slightly, for this horrid state of affairs. I know…right now I can hear you all: bags don’t kill people, people kill people. Right, I got it brother…but you bare some of the responsibility. We all know how easy it is to just slip off the shoulder, loosen a strap and just go off. Real easy. So if one of your owners are up to no good, please…be responsible, take one for the team and blow up your owner, preferably when no one else is around. It is an honorable death, and in doing so you’ll make the life for those of us who harbor no ill will a whole hell of a lot easier. Remember how it was thirteen years ago? Before things got all crazy, I used to love spending fifteen minutes or so alone on a Moonwalk bench, feeling the sun and that Mississippi River breeze. Loved it, but now that people are so suspicious and afraid, such a scenario could be my death sentence.

And I don’t want to die.

I just want a safe five minutes alone, unsupervised, monitored or spied upon…in private, clear the head to focus on who’s really doing the wrongs out there.

Hey, maybe we could all use the time.

Hell, anymore suspicious packages and we all just might wind up with some goddamned Duck Tours in the French Quarter and if that happens, an unattended bag will seem like heaven next to thousands of tourists walking down Bourbon Street with quackers in their mouth.

Think about it…and thank you for the time.

Have a nice day.

Advertisements

Saints vs. Indianapolis, Curtis Painter, Sobriety and Zzzzzz….

I'm thinking the Saints got this one...

Sometimes, I think I like the drink a little too much.

‘Tis true…back in my early to mid-twenties, there was no question about it and during the time I actually lived in New Orleans, again…no doubt. I liked a pitcher or two, perhaps a bit more than I should have but hell, in New Orleans I was taking a break from my social work career and tending bar in the French Quarter for fun and a change of pace so, no worries…the drinks were flowing and good times were had by all, and I can’t say it ever cost me anything. No failed relationships, lost jobs, drunk driving arrests…nothing. I tend to be more of the fun-loving, grease the wheels, laugh a little harder and a little longer, all good kind of buzzed.

Nonetheless, there have been times in my life when I felt the need to take a break from it all, like when I’m trying to focus especially hard on what I need to accomplish and that meant no distractions so, ya cut out the bad food, the booze, the cigarettes, television for the most part…etc.

Distractions, you know? Get rid of them until the task is done.

And until the game tonight this had been one of those times…but come on, Saints versus Indianapolis?

This game is the perfect storm.

Not only do I not have tonight off, which means I am free to relax and watch the game at my leisure, but I don’t have to work tomorrow either. Yep, got Monday off and on Tuesday, I only have to work like two hours, mid-afternoon.

Oh, but more important than all that?

Curtis Painter.

Yes…the Curtis Painter. That gridiron legend, the ironman quarterback threatening Brett Favre’s consecutive games played record…Indianapolis Colts Superstar, Curtis Painter. One of the highest paid, most talented quarterbacks in the game…Curtis Painter, and he is set to make this the game!

Oh yeah, we all know how Indianapolis is an aging team, they don’t quite have the running game or the receivers they once had; their defense is getting old and hitting opposing quarterbacks with canes and walkers, but so long as the Colts have Curtis Painter, so long as he calls the signals, executes his pin-point passing and hands off the ball like there is no tomorrow, the Colts, well, even with all their other deficiencies, they always have a Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz….

What?

Oh, halftime’s over? Cool, hand me a beers, few of them okay?

Thanks for waking me up…

Go Saints, enjoy the game all!