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Death By CultureThe Haunting of James
POSTED BY VINNIE BLESI, April 23, 2011    Share

James has fallen again. This time his chin and mouth hits the hard floor first. Blood spewing from his lower lip, he knows he will look like a botox bimbo or Angelina Jolie the following day with his swollen lip. James finds the humor in the thought that he got it free, except for the pain.

The ghost that has followed James for the last year has become more aggressive lately. Three falls in the last month have rendered him to using a cane for his injured knee. The bruises on his shoulder are slow to heal. James is afraid to get out of bed in the dead of night to urinate, as the last time he did he was pushed into his armoire, crashing to the floor in a drill that has become too familiar for him.

He remembers that waking dream two years ago when he awoke with the Grim Reaper leaning over him. Cruelly the master of death chose to spare the lost soul of James, leaving him to deal with the ghost that was haunting him. The haunting being more sordid reality than death. The Grim Reaper laughing at the irony.

James recalls his ex-wife calling him anal at how clean and organized he kept their house. Now the house is dirty. The house is cluttered with used frozen food trays, old grocery bags, and dried up cat hairballs. The bathroom reeks like a bad truck stop and the kitchen is full of roaches and bacteria. James does not care anymore. He does it to torture the ghost. The ghost loves a clean kitchen.

James thought that his childhood troubles some forty years ago were his fault. He carried the guilt for all these years. Now he realizes it was the first time the ghost visited him.

Childhood James loved to visit the local merchants. He just browsed, having no money of his own. He eyed the toys that he knew he would never get for Christmas. He checked out the long playing albums of his favorite music groups that he heard on the radio.

The first real gift he ever got for Christmas was a 10 speed bicycle. James was excited. He rushed up to the J.M. Fields department store to peruse his usual dreams. He had a new bike, a new lock, a new life. That life shattered when he emerged from the store to find his new bike gone. James did not realize it at that time, but it was the first encounter with the ghost that would continue to haunt him to this day.

A year later the ghost would fuck with him even more during the Christmas season. James' mother had previously married a perverted piece of shit and gave birth to their daughter. Oddly, they were still married even though he beat her, even breaking her arm once.

James will never forget that Christmas when, the girl child, approximately 5 or 6 years old at the time, was showered with gifts. James sat back watching. He got no presents at all that year. Obviously he had been bad. Obviously the ghost had been with him since birth.

"Death By Culture" is ©2011 by Vinnie Blesi. All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2011 by Nolan B. Canova.

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