A ghostly modest proposal

The Return of Kilgore Trout and the debt of the children.
“Well, it is payback time,” the voice of my Father said, Kilgore Trout. This is sort of unusual since my Father has been dead for over fourteen years. I know this; since I saw him have a massive heart attack in front of me and kick the proverbial bucket. Normally, I am a skeptic to this type of things. However, the ghost thing, I believe since I witnessed it first hand a couple of times. You see. I saw my Grandmother walk down our hall after she died. She has now stopped that and no longer visits. I really do miss her. One of the most loving, decent and kind relatives I ever had. However, there still is the ghost of my old man still showing up now and then. My old man, is not one to be religious, but his apparition may be caused by his ashes still being stored in the dining room closet. I was going to spread his ashes in his favorite RC model flying field, but I remember all his broken promises, his drunkenness, and cheap side, so I left him the closet to get even with him. The old man appears once in while in a white cloudy image that is visible and faded, but talkative. He checks every couple of years and has been known to freak out the two cats. Pops was an animal lover, but the cats find it freaky to be petted by a ghost. They only settle down when he moves the cat food to them. The old man claims that he is limbo, but I thinking he is closer to hell than he realizes. He was a good man, didn't discriminate or cheat people, with the exclusion of his drinking problem, cheapness, and a wandering eye, or worse yet his wandering male organ. He wasn't a bad or evil man.

Pop's claims he is some sort of star-trek limbo. With a science, he doesn't fully understand that let's his atoms float around without the pain of hell or the pleasures of heaven. He is thinking that Heaven or Hell is all a myth and that what he is experiencing is closer to reincarnation, but he does fear coming back as a cockroach. To quote the ghost, “ my life wasn't that great on earth to make me come back as a fucking bug.” Dad's image was sitting on a chair in the dining room, so as not to scare my Mother, as her age and health couldn't stand a vision of her disappointing husband. I think Dad was also not ready for being sworn at or chastised for his wastrel previous life. “What's it like Dad, this other world?” “It's like going to view the neighbors' slide show, or I guess viewing somebody's pictures on the face-book. You just see a lot of space and get to float around mainly back to your home town. Most people don't really know you're there. They are so busy now staring at their cell-phones. I fly around and then somehow I pixel-ate back to where you are buried or in my case back to the closet where you store my ashes. ” “Jesus, you couldn't have at least spread my ashes on a golf course or my favorite radio control flying field.” My anger issues return, as Pops made a lot of promises to me as kid, and not any of them actually materialized; he did teach me that life was usually one big friggin disappointment. “Ok, I understand. I wasn't the greatest Dad, but now it seems to late, so just leave me in the closet until hell freezes over.” My fathers imagine being clear enough to make out his normal pout when he is either drunk or pissed off. So, I decide to change the subject. “How the hell do you know about Facebook?"

For some background, my Father's failures as a writer forced him to take jobs that he thought he would like. With his love of all that future crap, and computer nonsense caused him to take a job as a computer operator, when the computer mainframe craze took off in the 1980s. This job did not live up to his Sci-Fi fantasies. He was highly disappointed, then drunk and more dejected by reality. It did add a certain realism to his work, as his sci-fi stories now had more humans screwing things up then most other writers of the genre. Although he hated the job, he did say, he met a new class of weirdo, that he never thought existed until he worked with the Techies of his day. “Jesus, son, those people I worked with the most anti-social freaks who walked the earth, you would have been better trying to socialize with Bonobos Chimpanzees.” Now, I hear the old man start his normal lecture on natural history, which normally would occur while he was over-served himself his liquid of the gods, BEER. “You, know meatloaf, that the Bonoboos have a lower aggression level than other chimpanzees, and they solve their problems by sex. Not a bad idea. Huh?” “Yes Dad, I have heard your previous drunk discussions on Darwin's cruel joke on the bible thumpers.” “Let's get back on topic Dad, are you using my Computer?” Dad now does have a sheepish guilty look on his faded features. “WELL, Dad it is like this the day I was going to spread your issues was the day Mom was sick so instead of floating in some damn field that will eventually be turned into condos. We put you back in the closet.” Pops now shakes his head which makes his image fade into view and out of view like some sort of weird magic trick. Pop's continues his grousing of technology.

“That internet is one disorganized mess.”

“What happened to the personal computer is going to make your kid a genius? It seems like the world is still run by mental midgets.” “Did I ever tell, How I used one, the first Apple computer and the damn thing had a cassette player to load the software in.” “Alright son, I confess when you are asleep I have used your computer.” “You know; it looks like the internet just spawned more time wasters and bubblegum for the mind then even TV did.” He gazes out the window to look at the neighborhood and realizes that you can go home again, but you will most likely be disappointed. What disturbed most was the little kids whom he had hope for and thought they would turn out to be nice and charming adults. Kilgore's ghost is spying through the window into the backyard and patio where he spent most of his time drinking and scribbling out another one of his failed sci-fi novels. Ironically, Dad was a social person unlike most writers who seem to be self-absorbed drunkards. Pops was a drunk, but not self-absorbed one. He actually liked talking to people and getting their opinions and then question them and try to see if they had any sort of redeeming qualities. It struck him that a writer should listen more; while capturing and fine tune these oddities, ticks of people into his characters. “Kid, you won't believe, but I floated into China and ended up in that Apple factory. Holy crap, I took an unsanctioned tour of the place in hopes of seeing a better future. Boy, was Steve Jobs not a compassionate hippie those poor workers actually got so depressed they jumped off the building.”

Pop was also soft touch to listening to kids who would stop and mooch off his kindness. Jesus, the neighbor kids would show up on the patio, and the old man would listen, then tease them and fill their little heads with sci-fi and horror stories. Kilgore also tried to see if the future generation love science and learning, which caused him to become a pin cushion to the neighbor kids. You see my father had developed diabetes, which required shots of insulin, which he let the Kindergartners inject him. He called the tikes his nurses, there were Terry, Jenny and Rose, who at age five were now called to the profession of health services for one Kilgore. Pops did really understand that giving a five-year-old a needle could be dangerous to his arm. Those little nurses would sometimes jam the needle, and the old man would shriek in pain shouting. “ALL OF YOU ARE FIRED!” The next-day pops would wait on the Patio and ask the little nurses, why they were not on duty. They would shake their little Shirley Temple heads and said quite correctly. “But you Fired US!” “Ok, I rehired you with a better candy allowance.” The old man would then hand the Hersey kisses, and the pattern would begin again. Kilgore never saw those little girls grow into teenagers, at least not while he was on earth. The big gripper took him when the girls were about six and seven years old. He didn't appear right away for a couple of months, and his image would not respond at first.

“Hey, kid what's happening with the neighbors?”

“How did those little girls turn out?” “Not good, you would be shocked to know that you were beguiled by their kid charm, which has now been changed into young adulthood malaise and meanness. They sort of become outward packages of beauty with a inner selfish of a chimp, with the energy level of a tree sloth.” Tom's three kids sadly didn't turn out like expected. Jenny never became that nurse, but Terry is still going to be a social worker. I see the ghost of my father laugh and smile. “Terry is a social worker; that's a good one.” “She used to sit on the porch with me and scowl, like she was sucking sour lemon and what a temper. I have never seen such a grouchy three-year old." “Did Tom's marriage fail?” Pops went to the wedding, so I think he was trying to find out the status. “Yeah, Tom's wife ran off with a UPS driver while on a drinking binge, but her brain was not so pickled that she ended out cleaning out his bank account before she hit the road.” “Well, fifty percent of marriages of fail, so it is like Russian roulette with your hormones that make you go broke.” “So, kid did the kids go to college?” Let's review the facts, Jenny flunked out first semester but Tom was bamboozled into signing the loan. So he now owes him $30,000.00 plus Jenny's car loan along with pain and suffering.

The second daughter Terry, the anti-social worker, has been getting her dog taken care of free along with the ability to use Dad's plastic with abandon and glee and no charge. Those debts are mounting along with the cranky ONE sleeping until two in the afternoon while the garbage cans can't be taken in or out. Kilgore the ghost and my Dad shouts out what he told me when I was a grumpy teenager. “DON'T LET THE DOOR HIT YOU IN THE ASS WHEN YOU LEAVE.” Now Pops shouts out his solution for Tom's dismal economic conditions. “Meatloaf, Tell Tom that the solution is simple:” WHO WANTs TO COME TO AMERICA AND WORK HARD? FIRST CLUE NOT YOUR KIDS! “Yeah, Dad you made me pay rent.” “Hey meatloaf. Is your Mom still pissed at me?” “Duh? You left Mom with no pension you schmuck.” “Hey, kid can you get me a beer from the frig? Like an Old Style or Milwaukee's Best?” “In hell or this limbo, all they give is Grain Belt beer, God does it suck.” “No such, luck Pops, if you want beer you are going to have to float over to Tom's house. When you are there make sure you take Barley for a pee, and a fall down and give him a biscuit.”

Ok, Tom always had nice dogs, too bad he didn't stay single and just have dogs as substitute kids, they are a lot cheaper.” “ Why doesn't Tom have hot and horny bimbos coming going from the House?” “Well Pops, his kids would Narc on him to the ex-wife (she who must be obeyed) .” “For the god sake, those kids must be adults by now?” “My god, Tom when he was single used to get more ass than a toilet seat.” “Jesus, that idiot should have never gotten married. He still could be a great player, not a poor penniless schlep.” “Hey, did the kids ever cut is grass or help around the house?” “What do you think?” “Hmmm, I hear that there a lot of women that want to come to America, why is he not being a player and enjoying himself.” “Jesus, remember Ricky Sultz and those Russian girls that lived with him while he was married.” “Oh, yes that was the only time I thought he was a real genius.” “Well, Pops I have a plan, since Tom is not making money selling over-priced jap cars.” “DAMN, Tom selling rice burners. I am so ashamed.”

“Well, Pops his money problems can be solved by just getting hard working girls to move and pay rent.” “For Christ sake, everybody with any brains wants to get out of Russia or Colombia.” “You get them here sponsor them for a work visa, take a cut of their pay and rent and your life is golden.”

“Tom's got a newly remodeled basement and one of these girls is a handy with tools. Such a sweet deal.” “Well, son I have already been chatting with some of those ladies.” “You see, it awful lonely here in limbo.” “HOLY CRAP, YOU OLD HORNY GHOST YOU MUST HAVE BEEN USING MY CREDIT CARD.” “Son of Bitch you haven't changed, have you.” My old man now pixelated into thin air. But he dropped this picture of his favorite ladies.

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