Drifting thoughts of a snowflake

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

THE MUST READ POST OF THE YEAR

If you read only one of my posts this year, I beg that you read this one. I know it’s long, but it’s worth it. I’m super hella busy at work and the Playa MC has graciously allowed me to publish his childhood trauma right here to entertain you all. So without further adu, I bring you the baddest man in in the ATX – the Playa MC:

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Hey Snowflake fans. Amanda has been kind enough to lend me her fine blog for long enough to get something off of my chest. It’s the Bert Incident, you see. The single most important event of my life. Travel back with me to the mid 80’s, back before Dora the Explorer, Blue’s Clues, and even that dreaded purple dinosaur Barney had their turn ruling the public airwaves. It was a time when things were good and pure, and everyone could tell you how to get to Sesame Street. But a monster lives on Sesame Street. And it’s not the Snuffleupagus.

The story actually begins not when I was the biggest Sesame Street fan, in my kindergarten and pre-K years, but instead later, when I was at the age of 8-12 or so (I don't remember exactly when.) I was a relatively rambunctious and stubborn kid; quiet in school, but not really shy or withdrawn. Probably close to the way I am today, except much fatter and with leopard-spotted dork glasses. Then the Bert Incident occurred, and I totally changed personalities overnight. I became sullen, withdrawn, and untrusting. I credit the Bert Incident as the reason why I did band instead of sports, didn't date anyone until my senior year of high school, didn't lose my virginity until the summer after my freshman year of college, didn't drink until after I graduated from college, and played WAY too much computer games and Dungeons and Dragons throughout my J-high and early high school days. In other words, while I was a nerd before the Bert Incident, I was a total geek afterwards, and I don't think I really escaped my geekiness until college. As you can see from the date of the E-mails below, it took me almost 10 years to even get the nerve to talk about the Incident with my brother. He’s 2 years older than me, and he and I are the only witnesses to the Incident that are still alive.

All dramatic stuff, I know. And all this drama is built up around nothing more than a Bert handpuppet.

My grandmother is integral to the story. We called her Mee-maw, and she was a tiny little old lady (she was, like, 5 feet tall or so.) She loved to lecture us about all things conservative. Me and her always got along pretty well BEFORE the Incident, but I hardly ever spoke to her afterwards, and never without family present if I could help it. She died a couple of years after the E-mail exchange below. As my brother and I used my grandfather’s fireplace tools to bury the urn that held her ashes, her elderly brother looked on and commented, "Yep. It's just like planting okra, ain't it boys?" The surreal follows Mee-maw around like a shadow, even in death.

Anyway. I wrote the E-mail below just about a year after graduating from college, and over ten years after the Incident. It was the first time my brother and I had ever discussed the Incident--we didn't even talk about it right after it happened:

Subj: Me and Ernie have a bit too much in common

Date: 07/13/97

To: [the Playa MC’s brother]

Howdy.

I thought I'd drop in out of the blue and discuss early childhood experiences that involved muppets that scarred me for life. But that's a little redundant. What child can escape ANY experience with a muppet unscarred? Anyway, I refer to the infamous and long repressed "Me, Bert, & Mee-maw Triangle o' Disturbance."

Do you remember the event in question? Lets set the scene. We were young. And spending the weekend at the woodywoods. (possibly week? The events that are to follow could have only occurred after a great deal of severe mental trauma... most likely Mee-maw induced. I'm bankin' on a week long stay.... ) It is night. You and I are in the Vomitous "Lion Room" upstairs. You know... the one with the lion heads scattered all over the beds. You are near the bed against the wall. I am IN the other bed. Ummmmmm.... I also happen to have been stark naked and lying next to a Bert handpuppet, I do believe.

We will shoot by the incredibly disturbing "why?" question and cut to the Moment of Crisis. Mee-maw walks into the room. I panic and attempt to... I dunno what? Hide Bert? Squirm back into my pants? I'm not sure what. Anyway, Mee-maw notices my struggling and removes the covers. She sees me lying naked in bed next to Bert.

At this point, I've managed to successfully block almost everything else out. I seem to recall her screaming something Mee-maw-like like "Do you know what this is? This is GAY!" And me screaming something else back at her, something most likely profane. The rest is squeezed down deep inside me in a tight little ball of rage and humiliation. My next memory is of her lecturing us as she drove us home, and of me sitting in the backseat honestly considering bashing in her skull as she drives. And that's the story! I think, deep down inside, I've hated Mee-maw ever since. The End!

Recently, I finally let the parts of this story that I wrote above come back to me, and even told the story to a couple of my friends. They enjoyed it tremendously, and enjoy teasing me about it even more. I can't walk into a toy store with any of them without being showered with Bert Puppets. Fearsome.

But now its time to take the next step, and as the only other witness to this event (aside from the Mee-mawnator) I want you to fill in the holes. How much did I manage to repress? Is there any more to this story that I've blocked out? Did I do anything awesome like push her down or spit in her face? That would rock. But even if I wasn't THAT cool, I'd still like to know what all you remember. Most importantly:

1.) What the HELL was I doing naked in bed with a Bert Puppet?

2.) What did I scream back at Mee-maw? Did she say anything else particularly cool back to me?

3.) How did this all end? Did I chase her from the room with a hatchet?

4.) What the hell were you doing all this time?

Also, if you remember things any way differently, please let me know. I think with these questions answered, the Healing can begin.

Some good has come of this. [An ex-girlfriend] just gleefully sent me a web address that she thought I would appreciate in light of this story. It may be the coolest thing I have ever seen. Check it out: http://fractalcow.com/bert/bert.htm. It explains a LOT. [Sadly, the website referred to is long gone. It was shut down exactly one month after September 11 when Bert's evilness was connected with none other than Osama Bin Laden. No joke! There is conclusive proof that Bert is one of the evildoers that our president is always droning on about. Read all about it at http://www.snopes.com/rumors/bert.htm ]



My brother responded a few days later:

Subj: Re: Me and Ernie have a bit too much in common

Date: 97-07-15 16:51:21 EDT

From: [The Playa MC’s Brother]

To: [The Playa MC]

[Playa] --

Yes, of course I recall the event in question -- in fact, I knew immediately from the subject heading of your e-mail what event you were referencing. You see, I too have a Bert-shaped scar at the core of my being.

The residual humiliation stemming from the event still troubles me from time to time -- which is ridiculous, considering that the goings-on in question were all perfectly innocent. I recall thusly:

You were frolicking nude in bed with Bert; I was prancing around in a latex Catwoman outfit, masturbating onto a stack of Saline crackers. Mee-maw came in and accused us of being faggots. You called her Satan's cunt, then whipped out a fan knife and opened her up like a can of Vienna sausages.

She rolled around screaming for a while, trying to collect her slippery innards in her tiny hands; we bludgeoned her with kitty pillows until she grew still and cold. Then we hauled her down to the bathroom and dismembered her lifeless corpse in the tub, sealing her limbs and viscera in cellophane and washing the remaining gore down the drain with tapwater and a couple of bath pearls.

We were afraid Granddad would realize what had transpired, but he proved to be occupied with sitting at the kitchen table, shelling peas and mumbling like an autistic. We smuggled the chunks of her body out of the house one at a time and buried them in the creek, pausing a moment to urinate on the disturbed ground before returning to the house.

Everything was fine for about a week. Then Duke [their pet dog] dug up her decomposing head and began batting it around the front yard like an old Nerf volleyball. We both pled insanity.

See, you didn't repress much.



No, seriously. I pretty much remember it like you do, with a couple of additions:

1) The all-important "what the fuck were we doing, anyway?" question: I'm a bit sketchy here, but I'm quite certain it didn't involve any sort of faggotry. (Sorry; I just love the word "faggotry.") As I remember, we were engaged in a sort of spontaneous game that involved my repeatedly leaving and re-entering the room; each time I re-entered the room, you would have arranged some sort of humorous tableau involving Bert: Bert throttling a stuffed kitty, Bert hanging himself, Bert in flagrante delicto. You were obviously running out of ideas when Mee-maw made her entrance.

I am certain that this is the proper answer to the "what were we doing" question based on my second recollection:

2) The "what was I doing" question: I was not, as you mentioned, sitting on the other bed -- at least, not at first. When Mee-maw entered, I was on my hands and knees sucking your toes. Just kidding. I was standing by the cabinets, having just entered the room to witness the scene you had constructed. Later, after Mee-maw had begun her lengthy lecture on all things sexually questionable, I took my place on the other bed and dug in for the long haul.

3) The bad news is, that's about all I remember. I do remember you engaging in a bit of a tussle with Mee-maw when she first charged into the room, but if you threw any elbows or did any serious damage, I don't recall. I also remember you screaming something at Mee-maw, and it seems like it may have been profane, but I'm damned if I can remember what it was. As to how it all ended -- I don't remember that either. In many ways . . . it will never end.

We should have sent her to hell when we had the chance.

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So that’s my story. I already feel much better having shared it with you all. I think with this step, it’s finally all behind me, and I will no longer cringe when I catch sight of yellow objects out of the corner of my eye. But if you only learn one thing from this story, learn this... if you’re walking downtown on a sunshiney day, and you look up and see Bert headed your way -- cross the street. That puppet is one bad muthafucka.

by body item ;

5 Comments:

Blogger Dirty Dan Sin said...

hey - thanks for that. now i am wondering what i may hve repressed that needs a letting. look out below!

9:58 AM

 
Blogger chunk said...

That was awesome.

Playa MC, its all about letting go.

The whole Street, even Oscar, the grouchy fuck, would be proud.

Cheers,

j.

10:55 AM

 
Blogger Hotpants said...

that post was so hot it mentioned Ernie AND MEEMAW...

it was the bestest ever!!!

1:40 PM

 
Blogger mona said...

i may very well never recover from this post.

thanks!

12:26 PM

 
Blogger Lunatic said...

I don't find this story all that bad, but then again, I have done some gnarly shit. I always found those two (Bert and Ernie) creepy.

My suggestion: find some chick willing to let you do her while in a Bert costume.

5:17 PM

 

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