Chapter 21

Even though summer is almost here, which is great, and I’m going to be a sophomore at St. Ed’s coming up in the fall, and it’s great that I made it through my freshman year, I’m not optimistic about the future. NOT AT ALL! Maybe I am some of the time, but only because of technology, OUR technology. Nobody beats it. It might be enough. I hope so.

The world isn’t in good shape and it’s getting worse faster and faster. It’s getting hot. Sadie says climate change is going to doom us to storms mayhem destruction when we are grown up if we don’t do something about what the grown-ups are doing now. There are terrorists and wars, although lately they have been small ones, but they’re on the go all the time somewhere and everywhere.

The economy is bad and there’s a crap load of pollution, too. All kinds of stuff is happening that I barely know anything about, the rainforest on fire, too many people, too much methane, although DB says it is just trillions of cows farting, and slaps his nuts.

He’s a nut, obviously. End of the line, bud. Head of the line soon.

We’re spending China’s money, and that’s not good, because one day it’ll come back and bite us. We owe them a ton of dough. That’s going to start another world war. They’re going to try to nuke us. I’m sure of that. They have nukes, but we have nukes, too, and we have much better technology, so they can’t win. The chinksters will go down the drain.

Sooner or later, they’re going to want their money back. We owe them the bank. Nobody even knows how much, but everybody knows whatever it is it would break the bank. “We want our money and you better pipe up.” That’s what they’re going to say. I think we’re going to say, “We aren’t going to give it to you,” and then the war will start. They’ll make a threat on us and we’ll retaliate with our missiles.

We have missiles that can go anywhere in the world in a heartbeat. They’re big missiles, absolutely huge, and pinpoint deadly. The military has them hidden away. They can blow a butt load of stuff up. They’re big, but we can squirrel them right inside a three-foot by three-foot hole, even smaller if we have to, and blow everything up, no matter what.

There are a boat load of Chinese, so we’re going to need a boat load of missiles. But we don’t really need to get all the Chinese, just the main men. We could do that, easy. We are definitely going to war with China. Soon, I hope, so we can get it over with. It will be so crazy scary interesting. There are plenty of them, but there are plenty of us, too, even though there are many more of them.

We are so outnumbered, but it doesn’t matter. Our technology will work for us, so I’m not worried. They’re the ones who should be worried. They should be going back to their villages if they know what’s good for them.

We have NSA and DARPA and everything in the dark that’s secretive and massive. If we ever do go to war with China, which I know will happen, they’ll have to use all of that hardware, which will be groundbreaking. There will be so much news coverage of it, all over the world, for sure.

DARPA is a military secret, the most secret thing of them all. It’s where all our big projects come from. They used to be based in Area 51, where the UFO’s and aliens are taken to and kept. It’s actually a real place. But now they’re on some island, somewhere else in the world. We don’t know, nobody knows, but obviously the government knows. Wherever they are in the world it’s remote, and a secret, although it’s all probably closer than not to China. They know what they’re doing. They’re not FOOLS!

It’s not a good idea to go to war with anybody especially China, but I know we would win. If and when we went to war with them, we would learn everything about ourselves and about them, too. We’d learn who we truly are and what we’re capable of doing. Our military is better, unbelievably better, than anybody else’s. The Chinese would find out what we’re capable of doing. It wouldn’t be pretty. You could never look back once it started.

St. Sebastian is the patron saint of soldiers. He was the captain of the Praetorian Guards, like the Secret Service and the Mafia all rolled up in one, for the emperor, when nobody messed with the Romans. The emperor took care of the Persians like they were the Chinese, no problem. St. Sebastian made sure none of the Persians got too close to the main man.

Our military should wear a St. Sebastian medal with their dog tags. We’re a Christian country. Since they are all atheists, the Chinese and the Muslims would know where they stood when they saw the medal.

We got the job in Iraq done fast, but then it got all messed up. It just went on and on. It’s just like Afghanistan. It’s always been a screw-up. We should have finished up there before going back to Iraq. The towelheads just drag it on forever. Back in the day the Romans knew how to get things done. They would crush your army, destroy your city, and everyone left over would become their slaves.

We probably had to make sure about the oil in Iraq, that we would be getting it all, and making sure we got it cheap. That’s the only explanation for going there over and over.

I don’t know why we’ve been in Afghanistan so long. I don’t know what’s going on there. It’s all garbage since nobody can trust the Afghans. We’re fighting towelheads and not getting the job done. We can call them that because that’s what they are. I don’t know why we can’t beat them.

But none of them or any terrorists have come here again, obviously, since 9/11, even though there have been threats one after the other. None of them have been able to come back to blow anything up. Our military has made sure they can’t do it, no matter how much they want to. They keep us safe.

Most of our military knows what it’s doing; but not all of them, especially not the lieutenants. That’s what Jack is aiming at, being a lieutenant, when he goes. You better not be a Jew Arab Muslim towelhead and run into him over there. The GI’s, the grunts, the guys on the ground, they’re the ones who know what they’re all about. Why they can’t beat the hell out of the carpet is a mystery to me. I don’t know the answer and neither do my buds.

Our grunts are super smart and they’re real people and real people know what they’re doing. It’s the guys who give the orders who are the problem. You can learn all the tactics in the world at military school, but if you aren’t there, on the ground, you don’t know how to apply anything and get it done.

It’s the Rangers and Seals who get it done. It’s just like video games. You have to be the man with the controller in your hand. President Obama? Can’t get it right! Thumbs DOWN. Politicians? NO! Congress? They’re RETARDS, most of them.

I like Sarah Palin and her family. It’s too bad that didn’t work out. She’s a plain-speaking countrywoman. But I didn’t like what she did in Alaska. You have a list of what you’re supposed to do in office. She got everything done in half the time and then she said, “Oh, I’m done,” and dropped her position and went for the presidential election.

I didn’t think that was right.

John McCain wouldn’t have been a good president, anyway. Sarah Palin wouldn’t have been any good, either. Who wants a woman in the White House? No way! I’m not saying she’s ugly or can’t think, but she’s just a girl.

Hillary Clinton is the only woman who could be president. She would have been the best one. She would have gotten things done, I’m sure. She’s always on her toes. She knows when to punch you in the face. Obama doesn’t do anything, or at least nothing good for us. I don’t remember exactly what I expected him to do, but all he ever does is talk  superior down to you.

I know the economy is bad, but it doesn’t affect me like some other guys. My stepmom and dad both work and make a boat load of money, even though they always complain that they don’t have any. They are always scheming to save here or there, shave their taxes, not give me anything. Dad is willing but my stepmom, NEVER! We are better off than most. I know we are better off because we added a big addition on to our house.

I don’t exactly know any poor people. There aren’t any of them where I live. But one of my friends on the next street over doesn’t have it that good.

His mom has to work two jobs and she’s never home because she works all the time. He lives with his sister and brother. Their father is gone. He’s not dead, just gone and missing. On top of that his brother became a schizophrenic and he couldn’t live with them anymore. The last two years, when I was in school with him, my friend got worse and worse grades. Then in eighth grade he was always out late at night and never did his schoolwork. So, he failed eighth grade.

I don’t see him much anymore since he got held back. Actually, I don’t see him, at all. He’s a goner.

Money isn’t everything, but everybody’s pawing after it, so maybe it’s everything, after all. Mr. Hittbone always says it is the be-all and end-all. St. Ed’s AIN’T no slouch when it comes to the old breadbasket. Everybody wants all they can get for themselves. If people have a chance to make a dollar instead of making fifty cents, no matter what, they will do that. Most people are just that way. Just about everybody.

I don’t like it that it’s that way. Many of the grabby people in this world win, but others get shot down. You don’t have to be greedy to win. You don’t have to be a winner at all cost. St. Ed’s should test for greed, not test for drugs, but that’s not going to happen since it’s the greedy principal’s greedy brother who’s got the school’s drug testing business.

Being greedy is not good character. Maybe there should be testing for stupid, too, although stupid usually can’t be fixed.

Our pollution is messing up the ozone layer. Everybody says it’s because of global warming, but that’s not actually happening. There’s no such thing, no matter what Sadie says.  It might be warming up a little. I don’t mind that. A thousand years ago it was even warmer. It was actually much hotter than it is now. Everybody survived through that heat wave. All the animals survived, and the polar caps didn’t melt. A couple of degrees one way or another way isn’t going to kill anything.

That’s not going to happen.

Everybody’s worried about global warming. They believe everything they hear. There’s Al Gore, but how can anybody believe him? He gets you drawn in with all his graphs and pictures and videos, but then he lays so much fluff on and on over everything. Whenever he talks about global warming, he says all the polar bears are going to die and become extinct, and then he talks about his dad dying, and finally how he lost the election in Florida.

It’s more about believing him than anything else. Why should anybody believe him? Pollution is going to get worse. You can’t really get rid of it. There are too many people, anyway.

There are way too many people, actually. The world keeps getting bigger, or maybe smaller, since it’s a cage with us in it. There are more than seven billion people scratching it out. That’s bad and it’s getting worse. It causes pollution and you can’t stop it. There are too many people in the world now, so governments are going to have to clear some of them out.

The government is going to have to eliminate a bunch of people in China and India, where there are the most of them. They won’t have to kill them all, but they will have to burn down whole cities. They’ll leave the elite alone, but the less fortunate are going to have to go. There are many more of them, anyway, so that will be all right with most people, as long as it isn’t us.

Our government is the government, so they can do whatever they want. All the white people will lend a hand. They’ll just kill the chinksters and turbans.

People will resist, but the government can do it in a way, not necessarily hidden, but it can be secretive, at least. When a whole city burns down, they could do it in a way that no one would believe they were the ones that caused it. They could cover it up. They could make it seem like an accident, like it was just something that happened. Do it, but don’t do it. Pull the wool over everybody’s eyes.

It’s been done before. Look at the Jews. Big countries and big governments can do whatever they want. There was a book written two years ago about confidential things, but the government saw it right away, when it was getting on the shelves, and they took every copy, hundreds of thousands of them, and burned them all. They can do that. They can destroy whatever they want.

I don’t trust the government and don’t want to be a part of it. But I wouldn’t mind being in one of the agencies, like the CIA. It would be a great experience, even though they’re hard to get into. The Secret Service would be a very cool job. Those guys have a plan for everything. They know how to make knives out of newspapers that cut right through your throat, through the soft spot in your throat, and kill you on the spot. They make their knives out of sheets of PAPER!

If the president gets shot, they pull Uzi’s out of their briefcases. No paper there! They’re ready for anything. They can’t stop the bleeding, but they can make you bleed bad.

Technology will solve our problems, but it’s going to take time. It can solve all our medical problems, make cars electric, and grow more food. What’s best of all, technology solves military problems. Most of our advancements are because of the military. So, it’s a good thing. Even starting wars can be a good thing, although just killing people, even if it’s the military, isn’t always right. But if we have to go to war with someone, then we have to, whether it’s a good thing or a bad thing.

You can’t just back down.

People always ask me what I want to be when I grow up. I’m not going into the military, like Jack, that’s for sure. I take it smart. I started thinking about it after I got into St. Ed’s and saw the lay of the land. The bookster billionaires are freaking geniuses, but I don’t necessarily want to be like them. What I came up with was the idea that I want to be a doctor.

Most kids don’t know what they want to do. Not really. They’re living in the moment. I do that, too, but I know now I want to be a doctor. I could help people a little and make a big pile of money at the same time.

Next year I’m going to take Latin instead of Spanish. It helps becoming a doctor to know Latin. Besides, I hate Spanish. At least I’m good at it this year. I don’t suck at it anymore, but I need all the help I can get to become a doctor. It’s going to be hard and Spanish won’t help me, at all. What doctors speak Spanish? Latin is the way to go. I’m going to join the AMA and fight socialized medicine right away.

When I’m a doctor I’ll be able to make a butt load of money. I might not be rich right away, but I’ll have plenty of money in my bank account. Then, later on, my son can go to St. Ed’s and my daughter can go to Mag’s. I won’t let her go to Joe’s They can go to good schools right away. That’s my motivation. It really is. I’ll do everything for my family, even though my family hardly does anything for me.

I never knew I wanted to be a doctor, but now it’s just in me. I don’t know what kind of a doctor I’m going to be, not that it matters, but I’m going to be Dr. Sebastian. I think it’s a good plan and I know Dr. Sebastian Gray sounds great. I haven’t told anyone. I’m keeping it a secret. All I have to do is hang on to it, keep my eye on the prize, at least until the school year is over. All I need to do is take it smart.

I’ll be Dr. Gray in a white lab coat and money out the wazoo to do whatever I want.

The end of school, the end of my freshman year at St. Ed’s, is right around the corner. I’ll just have to see in what direction things go when I’ve stepped out of the this way in door. I have summer camp and all my friends, all our girls and our manhunt game, and all our other good stuff in the woods to look forward to. I won’t have to go back inside to Mr. Rote Mr. Hittbone Mr. Krister for almost three months.

In the meantime, when school’s finally out, Scar and I will be running down Hogsback into the Metropark every morning, barking it up and chasing down anything that moves, making our own trail on the single tracks that twist along the Rocky River, not trying to make it in anybody’s shadow, going our own way, crashing into paradise, faster than anything anybody anywhere can sling our way.

The future starts here, singing up the crows, hunting down the finish line from the beginning like a rocket on the loose, staying on the ricochet in the seesaw sunshine, playing it smart not blowing my mind staying lean breaking the waves keeping my blood boiling and keeping the scars coming my way small as can be, small as pinpricks.

Ed Staskus posts feature stories on Paperback Yoga, Lithuanian Journal, and 147 Stanley Street Click “Follow” on a site to get its monthly feature in your in-box.

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