Tuesday, November 28, 2023

The Christmas Rebellion

There he sat, in his big fancy office, dictating to his entire staff on what was to come next. Pinching his small whiskers of a mustache he could feel the power of dictatorship. He even made his employees tattoo his brand name on their necks, they belonged to him. He was a savage boss, stripping his secretaries down to their undergarments just to make sure he and his empire were safe. Every estate that he owned he had his name in bold gold letters on the front of his buildings and his wife basked and bathed in his wealth. Donald Fury, was his name, and he’d just ran a background check on Craig Riddick. Craig was no ordinary employee because he hated being told what to do, but his passion for people earned him union leadership. After ten years on the job, Jada was spotted leaving the supervisor’s office crying about her paycheck. Craig watched in frustration. Donald Fury eliminated the Christmas bonus and had just bought he and his wife another million dollar estate. This fueled the fire. In all of America’s fragile foundation, when it came to money, people got funny. At night, the workers plotted.

“Prices are going up. Everything cost more, how am I going to get Max a new bike,” Deana said, holding up pictures of Donald Fury on golfing trips as they slaved on his assembly lines.

“We have to stop this man.”

“I hear he plans to replace us all with robots,” Victor explained.

This got Sasha’s attention, “He used Brian to get through last year’s holiday season and then fired him for getting off of the overtime list. He’s a mad man.”

Congregating and conjuring up the rebel spirits a brick painted with Christmas colors flew through Donald’s window.

“You can’t survive without us!” Bob screamed as his wife Janet did donuts on Donald’s front lawn as they sped off. Witnessing the madness, Donald quickly got on the phone with Joe, his Vice President. 

“They’re plotting a rebellion because I’m shutting down Christmas, prepare for code 666,” Donald explained.

Protest soon emerged on one of the most highly invested businesses in the world. The front headlines called it the “Christmas Rebellion,” as workers pinned themselves on crosses just to get a living wage. Watching from his high office windows, Donald Fury and Joe unleashed the army of machine laborers. Donald took to the microphone.

“I want to introduce you all to your replacements, you’re all fired!”

They all watched as police escorted them off of his property as he had his yes men set fire to a statue of Santa Claus.

“What are we going to do now?” Jada asked.

“We have to analyze how this happened and reverse it,” Craig explained to the entire crew of workers. 

“This is war.”

Realizing how clever Donald was they couldn’t help but notice how he’d literally prepared for this moment. He made sure that his power would last by boxing his workers into having little to no power. He made sure that no one had enough force to challenge him. 

“We all fell right into his trap. We bought expensive houses like him. We bought expensive cars like him. We even put all of our children in expensive schools. He played us like a fiddle,” Craig explained. 

Grouping together on Christmas, they all took what they had left and helped each other. They’d been humiliated on national news and the strike dragged on for an entire year. Now poor with little retirement left they sat and watched as Donald and Joe took over the world.

“We have to stop this,” Craig said as the now endangered staff’s strike carried on to another holiday season.

“We have to attack on Christmas Day.”

Recruiting an army, Craig and his former coworkers rioted, they set fire to everything and watched it all burn on Christmas Day. Standing on his truck, Craig watched his frontline attackers being arrested. 

“Send in the second brigade,” he screamed.

This group had artillery fire that they’d stashed in their basements. 


Things got ugly real quick and Craig found himself leading a rebellion to take down the most feared regime to ever live.

“I have a good shot,” Steven said with his red beam on the office where Donald and Joe had been spotted.

Hearing the sound of his launcher go off, everyone stood and watched a red sparkling streak fly above their heads with a fiery explosion soon after.

“I hit the target,” Steven’s voice echoed over Craig’s radio transmitter.

Everyone cheered as Craig took to the megaphone.

“Today we fought for Christmas freedom, and friends, today we won. Fellow coworkers, we had no choice but to fight, and now, in our victory, we celebrate the holiday known as Christmas, a holiday designed for us and our children in remembrance of a God that died so that we may live and be forgiven. On this day we’re not only coworkers, but we’re coworkers who united to fight for our right to enjoy the holiday season together.”

The End

Sunday, November 26, 2023

For Mom

First it was her brother Johnny, his death was a rude awakening of the power of a lady. You see, mom raised me in a dark world. Johnny was the brother that picked her up and kept her encouraged when she’d been mentally and physically abused by men and women foes, he died around Christmas, but mom kept speaking life into the atmosphere.

Then there was John, her father. We all watched as Chemotherapy slowly ate him alive. He suffered, even as he took his last breath, mom dusted herself off and kept going, even as he passed before Christmas.

We then watched as other relatives slowly fell off the family wagon reminding us to cherish every moment in this life, for we all will have our day with the death Angel. I personally don’t believe in death because even in darkness there’s an empty feeling eager to get back to living life.

Now it’s Grandma Edith, her Mother, my grandmother. Mom has been stuck in the neutral corner for this one, fighting with one glove tied behind her back listening to gospel songs to stay up. It’s evident that this one hit her hard, but somehow, everyday she gets up for work. Her favorite line is, “Grandpa always says, ‘Never give up.’”

My Mom, has never given me a reason not to believe in something greater than this life. Somehow, someway, I don’t know how but her clock keeps ticking. Fight, after fight I’ve watched her get knocked down and get back up. I’ve learned something from her just by watching. At times when I tried to jump in and help, she covered my eyes and pushed me to the other neutral corner. Mom has been a friend, a sister, a brother, and a father so today I give her an early Christmas gift. I give her my words. I know that she may never get to this piece and if she does it’s by fate. When Father Time and the good Lord calls her home I’ll be sad but I will learn to go on without Mom. Even on her bad days, she’s Mom. On a good day, she’s mom. Life is like an ocean pushing a small ship in the dark night at sea with a small sailor eager to make it back home to solute Mom. This Christmas gift didn’t cost a dime I paid for it with a thought.

For Mom.

Friday, November 24, 2023

The Weight of the World

 First there was the final exam, then the SAT, then the ACT, then more entrance exams. Sitting in a silent room, I realized that I had nothing left in the bank. The entire generation before me literally robbed me of a financially secured future. I had to work for everything so I could pay the bills. As I sat and watched people going on with their lives living like there was no tomorrow, I laid dormant in a room with only a bag of noodles to eat. I was a soccer standout who could barely meet the grades. I came from a poor middle class family and at the age of twelve I was pinned down while being forced to watch my brother being beaten to death right in front of me. Sitting in my dorm room fighting to get the motivation to study, I noticed people going home for the holidays while I had nothing to go home to. Sore from my last practice, I’d reached a tipping point and the more I studied, the more I realized that it felt like the weight of the world had slowly pushed me off into a universe filled with crazy wonders and ideas. Most people lived a simple life, but here I stood on Christmas Day for an experimental collegiate Africa Vs. America exhibition fundraiser with thousands of people watching me and millions of fans wearing my jersey. We all wore Christmas colors and I had to make the final penalty kick to win the game. Standing there, I don’t know why, but I sat and wondered if there was something divine helping me get through this life or if it were just pure skill because my life and career depended on this goal. Here I stood, an African American with the most important shot of the first soccer game televised in America and parts of Africa on Christmas. This feeling was worse than walking a tightrope with no net. Realizing that I had no home to go to, only a dorm room with noodles, I had no choice but to make this shot, and I did. Feeling the edge of my spike tap the ball just enough to give it a lift above the goalkeeper’s finger tips was enough to finally get me an endorsement. Watching the goalkeeper fall to his knees in the agony of defeat I could feel my team grabbing me to carry me off of the field. I guess that’s how life works, just yesterday I had questions about this life, I had test to pass, and I had hurdles to jump. I’d become numb to the woes of late night test. Reading numerous books and now the whole world watched me create a Christmas miracle for a country that needed a soccer hero for the sport. After I hit the mainstream, the pressure on me would have drove the average person mad. Why would anyone train as hard as me? Why would anyone do this to themselves just to graduate or win a game? Standing at the edge of space holding the entire weight of the world in my right hand on Christmas Day with a soccer ball in my other hand and a bunch of wild soccer fans cheering, literally turned me into a living legend. I guess something does guide us through this life, I guess something does answer our prayers. After shaking the goalkeeper’s hand as a sign of good sportsmanship, I began to understand why some people have to work so hard, why some people literally have to sacrifice everything so that others will feel some form of hope. Some form of motivation. As my story spread, I gave billions of people around the world something to believe in and it all happened on Christmas Day, but that wasn’t the end of my journey, it was just the beginning of a long career. What turned me into a madman was the fact that I had to keep doing it over and over again. My fans started calling me Santa because every game I gave them the gift of soccer.

The End

Thursday, November 23, 2023

Black Friday

Mirror, mirror, on the wall what shall I buy for them all.

The serious people that kill and steal and use their education to make crack and pills.

There I stood in front of her father, a serious man trading shipments for dollars.

Growing old and grey I’ve learned to loosen up so sometimes I grab a mic and spit in a cup.

In my times of sadness and trials, I heard a politician telling me to sit down.

So I frowned, and kindly read a book only to discover that my thoughts were took.

Stolen I say, like a thief in the night, so while watching a child dance I saw the light.

I smiled at her father and reached in my bag of goodies to give her a gift.

In deep thought I watched her mood shift.

Her father wanted her to be a doctor or nurse.

I told her no, sing for the people and rehearse.

You’re an angel, don’t lose your light, you were sent from God to sing us through the fight.

I got her a gift on Black Friday with glee, I spent hard earned cash at the store for it wasn’t free. It was a brand new microphone laced with diamonds and pearls.

She sang her heart out and began to fly while her daddy had to accept what she had become.

She was born to entertain, and teach the world to loosen up and have fun.

Santa is real I say, so be merry and good. 

He’s not just a character, he’s all of us, I say, so on Black Friday turn into him with glee, and don’t forget to leave a gift for me under the tree.

For it’s that time of year so let go of your troubles, spread the gift of joy and do it in doubles.

Black Friday

Monday, November 20, 2023

Thankful Work

Overtime has crippled my old frail body.

I can literally feel my back crackling every time I lift a patient. 

Eight hours a day and six days a week I clock-in. This workroom floor is all I know. 

I can even remember the first day I started. I remember I caught a flat in the parking lot and one of my coworkers helped me get home.

I can tell our administrative team is having financial problems this year because they didn’t pass out gift cards for the holidays.

Every year I see the same look on my kids’ faces praying that their father brings home some holiday blessings.

I’ve sacrificed everything for my children, they hug me when I’m off to work in the morning. They’re always eager to show me their good grades. Every ounce of work that I give to this job is for them. I love my family; therefore, I work for them, and not for my boss or even myself. I work to keep them happy, I work to keep them fed, and I work to keep clothes on their backs.

Thankful work.

Tuesday, November 14, 2023

Writer’s Block

I could feel the sweat dripping off of my forehead. The truth was that I had to think of something quick. My book deadline was approaching and my readers yearned for more. Speaking to my therapist, I did everything to blockout my evil thoughts and lustful desires. I was turning into a reck. I sat in my back room for hours searching for something. Thinking about every fabric entwined in my fickle imagination. I just sat there in front of the typewriter. Running my fingers through my now beard, I hadn’t shaved or showered in days. There was paper everywhere. Searching for page twenty-one of the murder scene, I began to read.

Her passion led her down an empty path. Lonely and superstitious, she sat in solitude. Abstinence had become her preferred method for pleasure but her obsessed neighbor couldn’t help his lust for her so he often watched her through his window. 

Ag, no, the readers want clean thoughts, something magical. Something to live for that will purify the imagination. I scrambled and stumbled across page thirty-five.

Slowly easing through her backdoor she watched as Tabitha begged for mercy while crawling slowly attempting to flee to safety, but Roxy wanted her revenge. Tabitha had driven her over the edge. Feeling the funk of hatred eat away at her thoughts she put the knife to Tabitha’s throat.

“You slept with my husband, my brother, and my father. Now I must purify your blood,” Roxy said while whispering in Tabitha’s ear as she lunged her kitchen knife through her back.

Wait, let me gather my thoughts, I have to focus on something that will give people some form of pure vibes. Something that will give them strength. Battling with my thoughts I fell to the floor. 

“Oh my God, I think I’m having a stroke,” I whispered to myself.

Shaking in the middle of the floor, drowning in paper, I notice an owl in the tree outside of my window.

“You’re a mess,” the owl says.

I’m like, “Oh my God, I’m losing my mind.”

“Get up off of the f*** floor you bum. Cuz that’s what you’re going to be if you don’t bow down to your s***y publisher,” the owl said as he just wouldn’t stop trashing me. 

Determined, I began to write about my dreams. I created a character that couldn’t use his arms or legs. To be honest, I don’t know where these thoughts were coming from but the more I wrote the better I felt, and while looking out of the window there was that gray and brown owl again. 

“You owe me for saving your sorry a**,” he said.

Ignoring him, I just kept writing. My characters were disabled but they had one strength and that’s the fact that they wouldn’t give up. They never complained, they lived life and didn’t give up on themselves. Realizing my masterpiece, I went to close the window but decided to have a conversation with the owl.

“So what’s your name?” I asked.

“The angry owl, now tell me, who’s your daddy punk b****?” The owl replied.

“Why are you so angry?” I asked.

The owl said nothing. He flew into my apartment and turned into a woman.

“Hi, honey.” 

I couldn’t believe my eyes as she got closer to me.

“It’s me, your wife. Now wake-up, breakfast is on the table,” she said.

Seeing my finished manuscript on the table, it was like I’d entered a whole new world. I had literally written myself back to sanity. I had a wife and a family. I’d met my deadline and my book was a best seller. The disabled owl was the people in my story. The people with disabilities. The people who got up everyday accepting who they were. These were the people who appreciated an author who wrote about their struggles. My writer’s block left me when I wrote for a cause and once I devoted the rest of my life to be the author who wrote for the disabled, for some odd reason I never had writer’s block again. I had a purpose and my audience needed me. 

There I sat, every night with the angry owl sitting outside of my window.

“You’re a nasty old man to think I would turn into your wife,” the owl said.

“Honey, take a break, and come in here and lay with me,” I heard my wife calling from the other room.

“Go in there with your wife and stop looking at me. I’m just an angry old bird. I can’t do anything for you but give you something to think about. Go spend time with your wife,” the owl said.

Soaking in the victorious feeling of finishing up another book I decided to listen to the owl. I took a break from writing and spent time with my family and never had writer’s block again. The more I fed my spirit the more the thoughts kept coming and the owl was just another character in the fabric of my work.

Realizing that I’d now had a new pet friend, I decided to write about him too. I wrote my first children’s book called the Angry Old Owl and for some reason when I wrote it the owl wasn’t so angry anymore. I couldn’t help but notice him in the backroom now on my couch away from his tree branch reading my book with his signature glasses on grinning from ear to ear.

I guess the little furry dude just needed some attention.

The End

Wednesday, November 8, 2023

The Retirement Party

 “Well John, me and my wife would like to congratulate you on 30 years here at Aluminum Steel,” Curtis said as John accepted his sincere invitation.

“So what are you going to do with all of your spare time John?” His cousin Pete asked.

“I don’t know, probably sleep. I don’t have any kids. I’m not married. Probably just sleep.” John replied.

The next day, John woke up and there was nothing to do. He got tired of hanging out at the gym, he didn’t drink, and he wasn’t really in to what the new school folks were in to. He tried to get involved with politics but really didn’t have the stomach for it. He thought about opening up his own business but had little education. Realizing that he’d gained twenty pounds in less than two months, he came to the conclusion that he had to find something to do or he would fade away. In about month eight, John got a call from his old boss.

“Hey, how’s retirement treating you?” Ron asked.

“Well, I have a lot of time on my hands and everything that I do seems like I’m running in circles. After watching several movies and reading several books, I’ve come to the conclusion that the main characters always seems to win.”

Ron laughed,

“Ah, well, let me get to the point, none of the young folks are showing up to work, would you like to come back for double your wages as before?” Ron abruptly asked.

Realizing that his new life had him on the edge, he quickly checked his bank account. It’s amazing how fast a retirement check can wither away. He thought about how many times he’d played in the community theater plays since he’d been retired. He thought about how many stores he’d been at and how he’d become the guy who had a bit too much time for conversation. He thought about how tired he’d gotten of his family who always hounded him for cash. His last thought was his last words with his parents before they died, the conversation led him to realize that everyone that he’d grown up with had moved on to new things and some had passed on to the next life. John found himself in a bubble where nothing mattered anymore. Church wasn’t the same and honestly all he had left was work.

“Count me in Ron. I’ll be in first thing in the morning.” John said.

After he ended the conversation he gracefully went upstairs to ironed his old uniform. He had something to look forward to.

The Retirement Party

Death Votes

 At the last ballot they celebrated their victory yet the righteous still stood their ground, for God was not gone. Friends his work had just begun as a war between good and evil began to unfold. Shekinah Glory and the temple where he dwelled left a certain group of people and they were left to fend for themselves. Exhausted priest and clergyman took up arms. If it was drugs and the power to choose that they wanted, for they voted for that right. As the righteous stood and watched, a death angel was unleashed, for if they voted against life they signed a contract with him. For even in Egypt there were goddesses of life, but friends in today’s world they desire a different decision. They desire a different vibe. Seeing a cloud of smoke and darkness fill the sky the death angel spread his wing at the span of the devil’s. For his wings were so long that they blocked the sun and fire began to fall from the dark sky, for they voted for death, yet the righteous stood and watched while also protecting their children. A war between good and evil had been waged and not many were spared who voted for the death angel’s curse. Dark venom began to spread deadly STDs and beauty sadly turned ugly. In the distance a group dressed in white gowns sang holy, holy, holy and began cursing and writing heathen quotes on street walls to label a section of earth as the pit of hell, and no righteous were allowed to enter for the people drugged, raped, and literally were killing themselves. Religious scholars began spreading mixed gospels of lies while the righteous stood on truth. Even in Egypt there were Goddesses of life. As doctors failed at the Hippocratic oath the power of healing was no more, because as long as the death angel’s wings were spread no one but the righteous had power. For the ones who signed the death wish thought they knew everything, but soon found out that they voted to kill everything around them. For they voted for death, but only in God there is no Death, only life. Some cried tears of sorrow while those who voted for life triumphed and moved on carrying out God’s will. For even in defeat they still won.

Saturday, November 4, 2023

Someone stole my 8 Ball

There I stood, working 8 hours a day in front of an 8 Ball.

A religious scholar would have probably condemned me to hell just by the history of the toy but that’s another discussion that may take too long to comprehend so I’ll keep this piece basic.

Three to five customers a day, all knowing that when you enter a business there are rules.

The first rule is that you do not steal. It’s a business and a business provides.

The scariest part about stealing is that the owner can never actually prove who stole but it usually cost him or her more money every time someone steals.

The mystery behind business is what I like to call the crumbling theory. It’s when so much mystery and hatred lies in some people’s heart that they literally pray and hope for the business to crumble. Some of these people even do business with you just to watch you suffer. 

The crumble theory has everything to do with the mental stain of having an 8 ball at the front counter. I have to admit that a large part of a business owner’s operation is mental. You have to mentally prepare yourself for what comes in once you setup shop in a neighborhood and open the store, because what people convince themselves to believe can be scary. 

You also have to realize that everyone is raised differently and a lot of people convince themselves that everything that they do is right and you don’t know what you don’t know.

So let’s get to the main point. Someone stole my 8 Ball. It’s not in the store, it’s gone. I’ve had this 8 ball hanging around the store for over 16 years. It has been in the hands of so many people trying to master the art of thinking and after 16 years someone cracked the sphere and gave-in to their own ambitions. Just like everything that goes on in my life I’ll most likely replace it with a new one and just like when an atom loses a proton or electron new energy will come in. I have really never been a superstitious person. In my earlier days I admit I joined a few strict Christian institutions so I can reason with why someone would be motivated to steal an 8 Ball. Perception plays a huge part in a business environment and some smiles are actually symbols of deceitful intentions.

For 16 years I watched people marvel at this ball, pick it up, and ask it questions, and today when I realized that it was gone, I kept working and came to the conclusion that either someone stole it because they wanted it; someone stole it because of their beliefs, or someone stole it to face their fears.

Whatever the case, I’ve come to learn as an older man now, that what people train their mind to believe is more dangerous than anything else unknown because even the truth to them is a lie.

The first 8 Ball that I’ve ever owned is in someone else’s hands now and if there is a mystery behind a sequence of events, then I’ll let nature take its course. Someone stole my 8 Ball.

Wednesday, November 1, 2023

Autumn Breeze

 Watching the orange and brown leaves falling randomly into a pile gives me a slight feeling of ease. On a windy autumn day they float on air and land onto the moist ground. Some leaves even freeze to the ground in a puddle on the sidewalk. Feeling the temperature shift, I sit by the window and drink some hot tea to reflect on past experiences. I even take the time to visit the local market where the farmers seem delighted that people are purchasing their fall harvest. In peace, I’m fascinated with the autumn breeze.