Healing Holidays: Anti-deadbeat Day

I’d like to dedicate this holiday to anyone who has been abandoned/rejected by one, or both parents. I am not referring to parents who decide to put their children up for adoption to ensure they have a better quality of life. I am referring to the men, and women who run away from their responsibilities.

Here are some tips for coping with the pain.

  • Create your parent(s) on the “sims” game. Dress them in goofy clothes. Make them act silly.
  • Download a photography app. Modify a picture of your parent(s) in a humorous way.
  • Make a poster with the words: “Happy Deadbeat Parent Day.” Write the names of your parent(s) on it. Write about depression, anger, worthlessness, or any other emotions these people make you feel. Burn it. (Careful that you don’t cause a fire.)
  • Realize that you did not do anything wrong. Your parent(s) abandoned/rejected you, because they have problems of their own.

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The Rumor Mill

“What do you think you’re doing sleeping around with my husband? He’s twice as old as you are!” Janet pounded at the door.

Tanya turned out the lights, drew the blinds, and retreated to the back room. The phone rang. “Damn!”

She took the phone into the closet. “Hello?”

“Hello Mrs. Channels. We have a great opportunity for you. How would you like to be on a game show?”

“I guess,” she peeked out of the closet door, and glanced at the stack of overdue bills on her desk.

She snuck out the side door of the trailer, and shouted, “Sorry, I have to go to work now!” Then she ran out to her car.

“You bitch!” Janet’s face turned red. Then she threw down her purse.

Tanya anxiously walked onto the set full of snickering college age kids. They were whispering to each other. Everyone went silent when she entered the stage.

“Welcome to the Rumor Mill,” the announcer said. He was a thin man in his late sixties, or early seventies wearing spectacles and a suit, and tie.

“And our first question is what rumor did you hear on the bus last Wednesday?”

“Your baby’s daddy is too cheap to buy diapers,” Tanya replied. “What a strange question,” she thought to herself.

“And the next question is what rumor started in the third-floor bathroom of the campus three months ago on Thursday at 7:30?”

“What kind of question is this? How could anyone know but me? I just happened to be going to the bathroom.” Tanya wondered. “Professor Reuben’s wife is a homewrecker,” she replied.

“And for the last question, what kind of lies is your ex-boyfriend spreading about you?”

Tanya was perplexed. “What kind of game show is this? My boyfriend told everybody that I slept with a cop to keep from getting arrested,” she replied.

“Winner!” the buzzer went off, and confetti fell from the ceiling.

“You won the big prize,” the announcer said, winking at her. “What door would you like?”

“Door number three,” Tanya replied.

“You’ve won a vacation to a surprise destination.”

“That’s awesome,” Tanya said, “Shit, I could use a vacation. I don’t care where I’m going.”

As she left the building, a masked man grabbed her from behind, and shoved chloroform in her face. She was tied up, and thrown into the back of a car.

Tanya awoke in an undisclosed location. She was strapped to a gurney. Someone shoved a needle into her arm.

She awoke to find herself on a bus going deep underground. The temperature rose as the bus ventured deeper into the earth. Flames were lapping at the windows.

“Excuse me, ma’am,” Tanya said to the pale-looking young woman with bags under her eyes, and needle marks in her arm, “Do you have any idea where were going?”

“To the underground, honey,” the passenger replied in a fit of hysterical laughter.

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Destiny’s End

“I’m going to the old apartment,” I said as I stuffed cookies, chips, and cans of soda under my shirt to sneak up to the dorm like attic of the battered women’s shelter. “I’m going to kick in the door, beat Brian’s ass, and grab the rest of my stuff.”

“He’s not worth it,” Mary replied as she sat on the edge of her bed munching on chocolate chip cookies. “Anybody got a story for tonight?”

“I guess the world still does need writers,” Stephanie grinned. “I got just the story for you. Many years ago, this battered women shelter used to be a college dorm. A fire started in this attic early one morning, killing most of the residents. Their souls are still trapped here to this very day…”

We huddled in a dark corner of the attic, and occasionally flickered our lighters so we didn’t disturb any of the other women.

I arrived at the old apartment at 9 a.m. the next morning. I banged on the door for 20 minutes. “Brian, open the fucking door, now! You’re going to give me my shit!”

Finally, I went to get the landlord. “I just need to get the rest of my belongings. Could you help me?”

“Wait here,” Corey replied. He went to his office to get the master key.

I thanked the landlord for letting me into the apartment, and made my way up the stairs.

I noticed that my ex-boyfriend was sprawled out in the hallway. I flipped on the light switch to get a closer look. His body had turned blue, and his mouth was covered in foam. There was an empty bottle of pills lying next to him.

Two weeks later, my case worker called me into his office. “Good news, honey. We’ve found you a place to live! Your name came up on the waiting list for an efficiency apartment. It will be available in two days.”

As I trudged through the snow on my way to the dollar store, I noticed an adorable, black puppy shivering in the alleyway. I tucked him into my jacket, and brought him back to the shelter. Since I was moving into my new place in the morning, the staff allowed me to keep him.

A couple days later, I caught a glimpse of something shiny while I was unpacking. The dog appeared to have a locket around his neck. I opened the clasp. I found a picture of myself, and a note tucked into it. I unfolded the note, and read it. “This is Brian. I could no longer live with myself. I told you that you should leave me if I ever got violent with you! I can find no words to apologize for what I’ve done! I killed myself. I was given a second chance to come back to you. I hope that I can make you happy in this form. Love, Brian.”

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Dr. Hatchet the Axe Murderer

“Dennis, I hate to tell you this Dr. Hatchet said, “Now that you’re on full disability for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, you’re going to have to give up your guns.”

“Why? I’m not homicidal. I only have them for protection.”

“I’m sorry,” Dr. Hatchet replied, “It’s the law. Besides, I’d be liable if something happens. What if something triggers you?”

“O.K.,” Dennis sighed, “I’ll give them to my son.”

“Honey, it’s for you,” Veronica handed her husband the phone.

Brandon’s face became pale, and the phone slid out of his hands.

“Honey, are you all right?”

Brandon went into the basement, and locked the door. Several hours later, he joined his wife in bed.

“Honey, who was on the phone?” Veronica inquired. “I’m worried about you. You’re acting kind of strange.”

“It was my dad, O.K. We haven’t spoken in ten years, and all of a sudden, he calls out of the blue. I don’t know how he found me.”

“What did he say?”

“He wants me to come to some stupid picnic.”

“That’s nice. Are you going to go?”

“Probably not. My dad’s been in, and out of my life, and I’m tired of his damn head games!”

“What if I come with you for moral support?” his wife suggested. “Who knows, you might have fun.”

Brandon felt a knot in his stomach as he pulled into the parking lot of Mongoose Lake.

He was approached by a frail-looking, elderly man in a ball cap. “Dad? How did you know where to find me?”

“I hired a private detective,” Dennis replied. He motioned toward his car. “Son, I’ve got something for you in the backseat.”

Brandon was puzzled. He hesitated briefly, and followed his father to the car.

On the backseat were two AR 15’s covered up by a blanket. “These are yours,” Dennis grinned. “We’ll go the shooting range together if you’d like. Just don’t tell anybody.” His eyes filled with tears. “I’m sorry I haven’t been much of a father to you. Vietnam really screwed me up, and I’ve been in, and out of the hospital for Post-Traumatic Stress…”

The emotional reunion was interrupted as Veronica approached them.

Dennis, and Brandon bonded with each other as they feasted on hamburgers, and hotdogs. Then they rented a pontoon boat, and went fishing.

“My idiot doctor will be glad to know that I got rid of my guns,” Dennis thought to himself as he called the PTSD clinic.

He became frustrated. He’d been calling the PTSD clinic for days, and he kept getting the voice mail. “What am I supposed to do when I run out of medication?” he wondered.

After a couple weeks went by, he noticed that the number to the clinic had become disconnected.

“I’ve been out of medication for days. I’ve got to do something,” Dennis thought to himself.

He drove up to the clinic. The building appeared to be empty. As he approached the parking lot, he noticed there was a foul smell coming from the building.

Dennis stifled a scream as he entered the building. There was blood everywhere. Dismembered bodies were leaned up against the waiting room seats in various stages of decomposition.

The words, “Weapons! Barricades! Weapons!” were smeared in blood all over the walls.

Dennis heard a voice down the hallway. He investigated the source. “Sure, I may be ex-military, but I’m not sure what the hell I’m supposed to do without a gun,” he thought to himself.

Dr. Hatchet was pacing the hallway. He was wearing his navy uniform, and carrying a bloody axe. “Weapons! Barricades! Weapons!” he shouted as he burst into fits of maniacal laughter.

Dennis barely escaped with his life, but he was never the same.

He roams the hallways of his apartment building wearing his old military uniform, and carrying a small hatchet.

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Medicine For Cabin Fever

  • Write a story, or poem about your childhood fears. I’ll share something about myself. I used to be afraid of lint. I have a cousin who was afraid of owls. I also have a cousin who was afraid of the Virgin Mary statue in my grandparent’s basement. One of my cousins was frightened by the lumberjack on the “Brawny” paper towel commercial. Another one of my cousins was afraid of the “Mrs. Butterworth” syrup commercial, because of the talking bottle.
  • Play the “Sims” game, and create characters based on people you don’t like. Dress them in silly clothes. Make them act goofy. Decorate their house in a ridiculous way.

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Medicine For Cabin Fever

  • Write a story, or poem about your childhood fears. I’ll share something about myself. I used to be afraid of lint. I have a cousin who was afraid of owls. I also have a cousin who was afraid of the Virgin Mary statue in my grandparent’s basement. One of my cousins was frightened by the lumberjack on the “Brawny” paper towel commercial. Another one of my cousins was afraid of the “Mrs. Butterworth” syrup commercial, because of the talking bottle.
  • Play the “Sims” game, and create characters based on people you don’t like. Dress them in silly clothes. Make them act goofy. Decorate their house in a ridiculous way.

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Dust Bunnies

“I hate cleaning!” Bruce grumbled. “Grandma, why do you always say that cleanliness is next to godliness?”

Gerty grinned. “I was hoping you would ask me that,” she said as she dusted the walls, and closet doors. “Dust bunnies were once fairies. They were turned into demons, because they became too violent.”

Bruce rolled his eyes. “Be serious, grandma.”

“O.K., if you don’t believe me, see what happens if you don’t clean your room for a month.”

Four weeks later, Bruce was awakened by scratching on the walls. A huge rabbit made out of lint with red eyes, and antlers, grabbed him. He became tangled within the cobwebs of its nest.

The demonic creature dipped him into a huge vat of chocolate, and proceeded to take bites of his body…

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