Saturday, May 31, 2008

"Elvis Wasn't Real."

In the car, heading home from school yesterday...

Luke: "Elvis wasn't real."

Me: "Yes, he was."

Luke: "Not according to my book, Do Not Open (by John Farndon, available on Amazon). He was born real, but he had implants at age 16 to have his brain and heart removed."

(At this point, I had to explain the definition of an implant versus an extract or transplant. Just so's we're clear.)

Me: "Elvis Presley was real, he was born in Tupelo, MS, and was one of the most famous singers of the 20th century, and they nicknamed him 'The King of Rock n Roll.'"

Me: "Why did they remove Elvis' heart and brain anyway?"

Luke: "To make him look better."

(Huh? Sing better? Possibly. Dance better? You never know. Never mind that Luke's probable re-telling of whatever Elvis urban myth is actually IN this book is muddied, or how ridiculous the notion is to remove one's internal organs in order to improve one's external appearance. My knee jerk reaction is "Puhleeze! Like anyone could improve on Elvis' looks??"

Luke: "Is Elvis dead?"

Me: "Yes."

Luke: "No, he isn't."

Me (so totally not wanting to open THAT can of worms): "So, how was school today?"


The Anxiety Dreams continue to saturate my periods of rest. Without going into extensive detail, I will say that the cast of characters, locations and seemingly unsolvable problems change from time to time, but the underlying vexation remains constant. The trade off is, I suppose, better than continuing to pickle my liver with alcohol, but kingdom for a REM sequence where I get to play strip poker with Daniel Craig, Ralph Fiennes and Linus Roache.

A mild version of the Anxiety Dream was a few nights ago, during which I was at my local gas station buying cigarettes and pulled out a $50 bill with which to pay. (I'm on a first name basis with most of the staff at this gas station because, well, I buy a lot of cigarettes. But the clerk behind the counter in the dream was the middle-aged, unfriendly, grumpy lady I don't like and avoid at all costs.)

Me: "Two packs of Camel #9 100's, Pink Box, please."

(Grumpy Lady turns around to fetch my cigarettes.)

GL: "$12.65."

I hand over a crisp $50 bill. Grumpy Lady takes the Magic "Is It Counterfeit?" marker thing to it, and instead of one swift line across the bill to verify it's authenticity, she starts writing all over it, "FAKE!"

GL: "This bill is fake."

Me: "No, it isn't. I got it from my ex-husband who got it from the bank."

GL: "Can you come back here in 20 minutes?"

Me: "No, why?"

GL: "Because I'll have the police here to arrest you."

Oh sure, most criminals are more than happy to return to the scene of a crime at a time more convenient for the victim and authorities. Heaven forbid Grumpy Lady didn't get all of her prosecutorial ducks in a row.

Me: "No, and fuck you. The bill is real."

Blah blah blah, then I drove away with my Nana (my deceased Polish grandma) in the car and we dodged flooded streets in order to get home. End of dream.

The next day, I was reading the Park Ridge Journal-Advocate, the local newspaper covering the Stepford-esque suburb in which I was raised, where my mother and ex-husband still reside. The Police Blotter headlined with:

"Counterfeit Currency

Someone used a counterfeit $50 to pay an invoice at Park Ridge City Hall, 505 Butler Place. City staff learned of the counterfeit currency after being contacted by JP Morgan Chase Bank on May 21. The bill was turned over to the Secret Service."

Ack! It sure as hell wasn't me, people, but it wouldn't hurt to question the Grumpy Lady at the Minuteman on Cumberland or the Anatomically Altered Elvis.

And if the Secret Service is "secret," how would you know when they came to confiscate it?


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