On A Wet Tarmac

Updated: Oct 17, 2018

It is March, rainy, and I am just stepping off the plane and onto the tarmac. The landing we had just succumbed to could only be described as frenzied. Many passengers, myself included, had surmised the pilot must have been fornicating with a puma to cause the melee we had just been privy to.


Now that I think about it, who would have been the dominant force in the bestiality ruckus in the cockpit, and from where did the term cockpit derive? I imagine I could call my English professor friend to find the origin of the cockpit and other various words once I finish compiling my “where did that come from?” list. Maybe the copilot knew the origin. Maybe the copilot was the puma. Maybe I shouldn’t have popped so many pills on the flight.


What did I take anyway? Let’s see, there was the green and white one, the all blue one, teal, another hue of green – maybe chartreuse even – oh yeah, that’s going on “the list” too, chartreuse – orange, yellow and orange… I think my belly has turned into a pharmaceutical mishap or a demented box of crayons. You know what color I haven’t seen in a while? Burnt sienna. Whatever happened to good ol’ burnt sienna? I know, I know, put it on “the list.”


I think Lady Chatterley said it best “People suck.” Or was that “suck people?” Ah hell, maybe it wasn’t even Lady Chatterley, nor any of her lovers. The whole entanglement of quotes reminds me of this one time a puma was found to be residing in an airplane – that must have been detrimental to the passengers. I could only imagine the quotes emanating from that flight like, “Holy shit! What’s going on up there? Is a puma humping the pilot?” I would definitely venture a fair wager something to that effect was uttered at least once.


Speaking of wagering, I once bet this poor sap he couldn’t eat a whole, raw, 20-pound pumpkin. I’m a little sadistic in the place of a crisis, which was my exact latitude and longitude at that specific moment. It was about four years ago, 273 vodka martinis ago, 712 shots of bourbon ago, and I was living in the cab of a semi. It wasn’t my semi per se, but the owner was already a lifeless heap on the side of the road, so suffice it to say, I squatted on his property.


One wouldn’t believe this guy actually had a plasma TV in the cab, not to mention the world-class pornography housed in a shoddy box labeled “stuff.” Stuff, I say! It was the crème brulee of porn! And the plasma TV was my medium, digesting every savory bit, then defecating it out for my eyes to feast upon.


All too often those days I found myself at the precise locality of Crisisville – please don’t confuse this with New York City nor any of the Burroughs. I’m not sure what those places smell like, but Crisisville reeks of moldy antelope, and anyone who’s sniffed the pungent but ever-so-curious smell of moldy antelope knows definitively what I mean. I once walked into a bus station and cocked my head immediately in the bewildered canine fashion at some odor lingering in the still air. I thought I was in Crisisville again but it turns out a bum soiled himself four days prior and he never gained the ambition to leave, much less wipe off his rancidity.


If rancid were a color would it be chartreuse? Probably not.


My hair is wet as am I, standing on the tarmac in the rain. This matters very little as no one is around to see me in this moistened condition. Let me tell you, no one knows more about moistened conditions more than I. I once spent a year and a half in a perpetual state of not-so-drenched, not-so-dry. Humidity? Nope. Glandular problem. Not mine, but the lady living upstairs from me.


I begin to head towards the doors leading inside the terminal. For whatever inexplicable reason, I check my pockets for loose change. A nickel, a penny, a red pill, a green pill… This could turn into something Dr. Seuss would be proud of. I weed out the change leaving a small platoon of racially harmonious pills behind. They shall have their war, I think to myself as I build a sufficient amount of gin-laden saliva in my mouth, then throw the boys down my gullet. “Talley ho!” I yell. Upon second thought I probably could have found something hipper to say. “Step back, bitch!” I say loudly to let the youth know I’m not among the detritus as of yet.


The terminal doors slide open in front of me at the same exact moment my right arm swings up inexplicably. My thumb extends upward and I immediately realize my motions are being controlled by the irreverent Arthur Fonzarelli. I smirk and let out an almost silent, “Heyyy.” Forward is the direction in which my body leads me. In the past, it has led me in an innumerable amount of vectors, but this time it was definitely forward.


I wonder if the Karate Kid knew his mentor was a chef in a past life?


I am in dire need of a cigarette.


There was a time when I didn’t smoke. I was 18 and the thought had never even entered my mind, until I had to make “the choice.” Walking carelessly from the comic book store back to my house, after buying my latest collector’s item – still in the original packaging of course – I was so rudely assaulted by a band of thugs, the dregs of society as I remember them. One held a gun, another held an elderly lady. The man wielding the instrument of death, the gun that is, not the old lady, told me I had a choice. After educating him on the economics of having no money due to being a comic book nerd, he informed me that it was not money he sought.


I believe his exact words were, “You racist prick! I don’t want your blood money. I’m a Yale grad who is going to show you the ramifications of smoking cigarettes, through a metaphor. You see, this old lady here represents life and you are the decisions leading up to this point. Take this cigarette! Now, if you smoke it, you being the bad decision, she dies. If you refrain, a good decision, she lives.”


I asked what the gun represented, to which he said “Nothing, stupid. It’s just a gun!”


Having never fully comprehended simile and metaphor, I took a puff of the cigarette. At this, I was informed I could leave. I wonder what happened to the old lady? I’ll bet you smoking killed her.


My luggage is just around the corner and I think I have control over my appendages once again. I walk towards the conveyor belt and watch the procession of suitcases follow each other ‘round and ‘round like people repetitiously and ignorantly following each other through life, not making any individual choices leading to the progress of society. Holy shit! That description is a simile and the suitcases are real-life metaphors for people. It all makes sense now!


There is much commotion behind me and I turn to see many people deep in agitated conversations. I begin to eavesdrop.


“Can you believe the pilot was actually humping the puma?”


“Can you believe both the copilot and the navigator were videotaping the whole thing?”

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