(This is a bit of pseudo-nihilistic fluff with smatterings of my crabby reality, plus movie references at the end. What do you expect from an ode to Valentine’s Day? Read my Thoughts entry from last week if you want something long and seriously thoughtful.)
I’ve always had a sense of humour on Valentine’s Day, that’s why I’ve always fondly referred to it as “VD”. Okay, I’ve always had a sense of black humour on VD... but that’s not too terribly different from any other day, it simply takes on a particular focus.
Today you see can see my usual VD cheer scattered around. My irc channel topic is “Spreading VD on Twitter”. As I had been! Cheerfully using my own preferred #VD topic for many tweets (I didn’t check, but I’m assuming more serious matters actually have an #STD topic), as opposed to the commonly used #VDay. I wished everyone a happy VD and said I hoped they wouldn’t get too sick.
Next a friend woke up and said good morning to the universe. I replied with a “Happy VD. Make sure the universe uses protection.” Then I went about my usual morning article reading, tweeting the first one with “Naked Romans caused the spread of VD, not a surprise.” followed by “Men getting naked together and spanking young maidens is now called life instead of a one-day pre-Spring fertility festival.”
And later (about another topic): “That wasn't a good VD article. Probably even Texans find feral hogs less approachable than domestic sheep and goats. ;)” Those weren’t at all my only mentions or insinuations of porn: “Is writing about Focus on the Family male prostitute scandals porn?”, in reference to the quoted headline “Romney, Santorum & Gingrich promise to ban porn”.
One might wonder if I’ve always been such a lovely chipper person on VD. Oh yeah!
I found myself remembering VD 1994 (around when CPAOD #5 came out, it was labelled “Beltane 1994"), which was certainly one of my more acerbic years. VD was actually coming up within a few days, or a day, I believe, when we invented “The BB Gang”. (Which at least was a step up in weaponry from “The Kitchen Gang” around my 17th birthday, that one included a cheese grater in its tactics.)
I was sitting with two friends. One was (still is) long-time best friend Gordon (who was a regular CPAOD artist back then) and the other was Paul, who I was having a heavily dysfunctional non-relationship with at the time. So dysfunctional that I couldn’t have a relationship with anyone else and could only feel snitty about my non-relationship with him (it was complicated, heh... by complicated I mean I was recovering from abusive relationships and he’d become a junkie, and we both cared a great deal about each others’ wellbeing vs our own poisonousness despite being deeply dysfunctional individuals).
Part of my grumpy snit of the moment was to ask Gordon in front of him “Will you be my Valentine’s date? We can go kill happy-looking couples together in a park or something”. He agreed to the proposal.
No, of course we weren’t going to hurt anyone (like I would be writing about it and sticking it on a web site if we were guilty of more than bad senses of humour). We did get on a roll, though.
He was going to use a gun, I was going to use a crossbow. Not only have I always been fascinated with crossbows, I thought we needed the symmetry so the headlines would read something about a mysterious “BB Gang” that only uses projectiles starting with the letter B. Everyone would be full of bullets and bolts.
Ultimately we joked this plan out onto a roadtrip where I would seduce obnoxious rednecks or other jerks out of bars and we would bullet and bolt them outside. But Paul was getting steadily more jealous about me only going on a VD killing spree with Gordon, and finally whined enough for me to say “ok, ok” and include him. He would need to use... a bat.
So, rewrite. I would lead them out of the bars, Paul would bash them on the head with the bat, and Gordon and I would then kill them with bullets and bolts. Hopefully only one or two of each per person, it isn’t good to be wasteful. I wasn’t sure at this point if that would ruin everything and turn us into The BBB Gang, but whatever. At least it made an all-inclusive threesome, right?
Don’t worry too much, I enjoy Fair Trade chocolate and I can be susceptible to those sorts of bribes. By susceptible I mean I’ll act a little less surly, not that I’ll do anything. Beyond, possibly, refraining from joking about killing you for a while if you offend my VD sensibilities by looking happy.
And, for the record, I actually did go on ONE (count ‘em) VD date in the course of my life. When I was 20 Cronenberg’s “version” of Burroughs’ Naked Lunch was out in the theatres and Bruce took me to see it. That was a few years before The BB Gang. I couldn’t successfully have a relationship with him at the time because I was too dysfunctional from an abusive marriage, and therefore I instead opted for getting into a considerably more abusive relationship a few months later. During which I fell for the would-be bat-using member of The BB Gang (because, believe it or not, he was a genuinely good and gentle person and despite all self-loathing I craved that).
Naked Lunch was a fun movie, as long as you only considered it a movie and didn’t think it was at all a rendering of the book (that’d be quite a difficult book to render into film). It was a long time ago, but I think I remember it moreso being a hodgepodge of Burroughs’ life story mixed with bits and pieces from his stories... or at least with imagery from his stories.
I should watch it again sometime. Cronenberg was, after all, capable of making such romantic all-time VD greats as Videodrome and Dead Ringers (definitely two of my favourites).
Maybe I’ll see if my daughter has time to watch A Clockwork Orange today (been meaning to get to it lately). As evidenced by The BB Gang, droogies are most definitely a VD kind of thing... and it’s probably romantic to torture someone who raped your wife and led to her death anyway, right? Well, ok, sure, I’m obviously picking it as an anti-VD film.
Bruce and I, on the other hand, might work on trying to remember to celebrate an anniversary, now that our 15th is coming up in a couple of weeks. Maybe. Recently I was looking through some emails I sent in the late 90s and found myself asking Bruce in one if it would be okay to pick Gordon up and go see Jodorowsky’s Holy Mountain on our anniversary. I did at least bother to note that El Topo would be the better anniversary movie, but it was unfortunately showing the next night.
Paul couldn’t join us on that outing because he died almost 15 years ago, about two weeks after I got married. I count his death years along with my years of marriage. It’s probably not a particularly romantic thing to do.
Cheers to The BB Gang. Two of us are still alive, against all odds, one of us is still remembered, and Gordon bought me a handheld crossbow for my birthday last year! VD lives on in our hearts... (Better than in other parts of our bodies, no doubt.)
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