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Saturday
Sep242016

Deep State

Before Lucky moved downstairs writing in cold empty rooms waiting to be abandoned, SOL let him crash for seven days in his family (mommy & daddy were pensioners living in instant bull) owned 80,000TL all white Swedish-styled six-room apartment filled with glass tables, appliances, chairs, sofas, wardrobes, plasma screen savers and high tech cleaning tools like rags, brooms and mops with a partial view of the deep blue BS.

SOL (shit out of luck) was kind and lonely - feeling heavy deep real repressed bitterness like millions of others intelligent enough to see know and understand how the Turkish authoritarian micromanaged Deep State system had screwed citizens with grandiose educational employment lies and empty promises pacifying 300,000 unemployed teachers living at home on welfare handouts while exerting Power & Control programs through never ending academic tests, endless exams - play it again Sam - prolonging the inevitable death of individual spirit and curiosity and humor with enough monumental paper pushing to grind humans down, kill hearts and dull minds causing emotional earthquakes on cultural fault lines while stifling dreams and desires of paranoid students to achieve future social and economic dreams.

Fat chance said zero luck.

The future is now, said Lucky and it’s a beautiful mystery. My generation is fucked, said SOL strumming his Spanish guitar with sad eyed seriousness on his balcony near The Department of the Forest.

Before going to Giresun Lucky helped twenty Trabzon university students practice for oral exams. They needed more vocabulary and courage. They studied forty topics to prepare for extreme extra temptations like sex-ting and extemporaneous vocal chords.

Topics were about society, politics, history, current events, moral choices and obscure rigid authoritarian cross-cultural scientific and mathematical legacies focusing on developing and fostering insecurity, memorization and command and control illusionary procedures employing Deep State propaganda to coerce eighty million bleating sheep into medicated anxiety.

Let’s eat more XANAX, said student victims swallowing fear, healthy doubt and mysterious uncertainty.

We cannot change our major, said female university students. Ever. We live and breathe and die in our systemic major whether we like it or not. My dreams to be a boat captain disappeared like the Titanic, said one girl. Poof.

Suck it up, said Deep State.

We need more Engineers said Deep State in 2008. Design and conquer.

We need more Teachers said Deep State in 2012. Buy the book.

We need more prolonged adolescents over thirty living at home, said parents. Females crying silent tears waited for pre-arranged marriages to perfect strangers.

We need more idle backgammon players drinking brown tea and stirring processed carcinogenic sugar molecules said Deep State.

We need more big time watches, expensive cell phones, patent leather shoes, guns, water cannons, tear gas canisters and corrupt profit motivated private mine inspectors in Soma, said Deep State police.

We need more Xanax, said the dumbed down population. Increase the dosage, said a shirking shrieking shrink in Ankara.

WE, Deep State disguised as surrogate parents, will whine you and dine you. Do what we say or we will starve you to death by consensus.

Being curious is not in our vocabulary, said female university students. Personal freedom and independence is not in our lexicon, having been outlawed by Article 301. 

Dissent is terrorism, said Deep State.

Outlandish.

Outsourced to ideological appliance factories and Re-form Through Re-education Gulags in China.

Bend over said Deep State raising a sword. Take it like a man.

The Language Company

 

Saturday
Sep172016

Odyssey of the hat

Sitting in Trabzon in early September he decided to get another Akubra from David Morgan near Seattle. He’d had two in his short life. The first was a Banjo Patterson received in Eugenics. He wore it in China for three years and another year in Ankara/Bursa.

He gifted it to Zeynep before flying to Indonesia where he received a Snowy River. He gifted that cat in the hat to a Ho Chi Minh lover before walking the Nam-Cambodia-Laos-Trabzon path. In Trabzon he ordered a Traveler.

In late October two days before the Sacrifice holiday, Sit Down called from Trabzon, “I have your customs documents here.”

“Perfect timing,” said Lucky. “I’ll be over tomorrow. See you at the office.”

Process: Meet Sit Down and walk to the customs bureaucrazy near the port where Russian container ships unloaded crates of baboons.

Go to Office #1. Office #1 man sent them to Office #2 man. Office #2 man said, “Go upstairs to Office #3 man.”

Ring around the mulberry bush. Here we go and where we stop nobody knows.

Office #3 man was not at his desk. Another man said the value of the Traveler ($135) would mean BIG customs duties ranging from $25-75 depending on (a) his mood (b) international currency fluctuations based on speculative financial trades after the market closed and (c) his executive decision to charge said custom taxes in (1) Turkish Lira (2) Euros (3) Dollars (4) undetermined.

Lucky selected #1, filled out forms with blue ink on a line printed for that purpose the man entered data into a computer databank stamped some forms formed some stamps adjusted his purple Windsor fit to be tied neck knot smoothed his 100% blue cotton medium sized shirt into government issued tax pants nestled next to a black plastic belt above shiny handmade black leather shoes smiled and said, “46TL. Pay downstairs at Office #2.”

The portly going bald Office #2 man was loquacious. They exchanged grins paperwork and telepathy - We are in this together.

He copied essential documents accepted 46TL stamped and signed where he was authorized to because it was important necessary and fun. He handed forms back, “You brought me luck today. No one smiles here. Everyone wears grouchy pants. They rehearse eternal morose ambivalence. Go to the Receiving Office fifteen kilometers from here.”

Lucky smiled, “Every day above ground is a prodigious day.”

Lucky and Sit Down hitched a ride on a garbage truck overflowing with past, present and future used grammar textbooks. The RO was a cement building in an industrial park. A bonfire burned in front.

“Why?”

“They are destroying evidence of Kurdish and Armenian genocides, self-autonomy dreams, regretful memories, future fears, and Turkish democratic ideals,” said Sit Down.

A man in a death mask threw Human Rights Watch on flames.

“I see an eternal flame for international peace,” said Lucky.

“You’re dreaming,” said Sit Down.

They walked through dusty rooms filled with boxes.

The Receiving Director sat at his desk with a brown account ledger from 1900. Modern technology obscured. Lucky handed him formless forms. They shared tea and small talk. Spoons danced with brown leaves and sugar molecules.

Two workers carried over a long box from Holland. One slit it open with a serrated knife. He handed the Director an invoice, no voice and silent voice.

He enumerated the contents as the director marked off items in his book with a leaky pen: two aluminum bike frames including magnesium handlebars, miniature pedals, custom designed Italian foam seats, sprockets, chains, Shimano gears, hollow Zen bell from Kyoto, GPS navigation gadgets, four titanium wheels with be spokes, two hydrocarbon water bottles, two polyurethane reflective helmets featuring solid blue racing stripes augmented by spiral nebula galaxies, three pairs of form fitted black and blue iridescent bike shoes, three pairs of water soluble black/white racing gloves, synthetic shirts, shorts, and quick dry underwear in fifty shades of gravitational necessity.

The Director double-checked items in his ledger and handed the silent invoice back to the man. He put it in the box taped it shut and pushed it away.

The Director handed him a lucky paper. He disappeared into a cavern. He returned holding a box with white sticker #2443. The Director verified the form from Office #2 man. Tick. He handed over the form and box, “Here you are. You brought me good luck today.”

“Thanks very much. Luck favors the prepared. Thanks for the tea.”

Lucky and Sit Down enjoyed thick coffee in Trabzon while seeing/hearing a blind Kemil player sing laments. They confirmed future conversations about residency permit paper work, shook hands and he returned to Giresun by hot air balloon skimming the BS.

On his last evening at TEOL he helped scared students. “Open your head open your heart and open your mouth. Say ah.”

Students chimed, “First we open our wallets. Ha, ha, ha.”

He carried the box to his cold empty apartment. He pasted #2443 in his notebook. He opened the magic box. Size 59 in Regency Fawn.

Box paperwork said, “The Traveller is the Akubra to accompany you on your travels. It is made in Akubra’s pure fur Pliofelt, a soft pliable fur felt developed specifically for crushable hats. The pre-creased pinched telescope crown is 4 3/8 inches high. The welted brim is 3 inches wide. The brim has a unique memory insert that allows the hat to be manipulated back to shape easily after being packed or crushed.” Unquote.

Addendum in invisible ink: Travelers wearing this hat cannot be crushed, folded, fooled, spindled, cheated or manipulated. This hat brings the wearer good luck. It spreads fortune and prosperity to others along the way. This hat allows Travelers to appreciate diversity, freedom and tolerance with beauty, truth, and gratitude.

The Language Company

Sunday
Sep112016

Gratitude

A forest outside my new room.

Evergreens towering into sky. Crow calls at 6. Wake up! Wake up!

Sunburst over the Black Sea.

The flat is high in hills.

Fresh sea air.

Trabzon lies near the sea. On the sea. Greek, Roma life, ancient fort, walls, steps.

People share curious greetings, ah, so you know Turkey from 2007?

Dancing spoon glass

Wandering old roman stone streets early light,

Fruits, veggies, 28 olive varieties, raisins, tomatoes, cheeses, fish in food heaven.

Feels great being an anonymous ghost, blessed to be here now.

Hospitality is slow.

Imagine the day.

Gestures.

Time machine.

See through eyes, not with eyes.

Zen way Tao.

Acceptance and gratitude.

 

Saturday
Sep102016

English School Management Style in Turkey

Early in September at the beginning of a 51-day short story, Lucky suggested to Trabzon management, I’ll be happy to move to Giresun. You need a full time eloquent teacher there. It saves you time and money. It means you don’t have to send a native barbarian over by daily bus. Saves 2.5 hours two ways. Turn around time. Students will have a full-time talking monkey expressing clear pro-nun-ci-a-tion with a silent eye.

The ineffective English coordinator-director married to Mr. Fat Profit said, Ok and called the Giresun Die Rector conversing with wild specific gestures. She stopped yakking. Connection died.

She spoke with trembling hands it’s ok. She grabbed the teachers’ schedule and scratched out his name. I eliminate your name, identity and memory. I erase your existence here. You do not exist on my scheme of language inquisition and massive revenue if you only knew. We want our teachers to be happy, lying through her teeth. In Giresun they will help you settle in. Get a spacious apartment near The Department of the Forest. No hot water and a view of the Black Sea. Find your way. Etc.

Thanks this is my lucky day.

He traveled to Giresun by bus along the sublime Black Sea. The bus passed a long haul semi. The blue plastic canvas tarp read TRANSTIM.

Met a four transit. The rucksack truck carried refugees from Georgia to Grease. Three million lived in Germany. They were the pre-invasion poverty and destitute force seeking social welfare benefits.

B quiet, said Ata Leader born in 1923. Immigrant mothers covered children’s mouths. Don’t speak. If they discover us they will kill us with false hope, lies and acts of random kindness.

Police stopped TRANSTIM. They murdered adverbs and adjectives. Kill modifiers. Murder darlings.

In Giresun Lucky saw many people with bandaged hands - domestic victims…shhh no talking about reality.

4/10 Turkish women suffer domestic violence in terrified silence, speaking of unpleasant facts. If they go to a hospital, human services, or police to file a complaint they are exterminated with extreme prejudice. Liar, liar, pants on fire.

Everyone’s ego carried a gun reinforcing visual intimidation.

 

Shit Outta Luck

 

In Giresun, Lucky needing a temporary place to crash met Sooner Or Later (SOL) or Shit Outta Luck, a sad spinally hunched over articulate 28-year old part-time neurotic Turkish/English teacher. He was strong on grammar rules and weak on life.

I love rules, said SOL. I failed my government teachers’ exam by one point. What’s the point, asked Lucky pointing at the Black Sea. Being correct is never the point.

The point is to get a cushy government-teaching job, said SOL. Now I teach, cajole, bribe, insist and incite with grammatical insight, exam material to blind, deaf and dumb university students.

How to pass, how to pretend they know the grammar rules. How to keep their fucking mouth shut in a Big Ears No Mouth society. They struggle for jobs. They struggle in/out of university. They struggle to be free and independent. They struggle to escape the tyranny of oppressive, emotionally distraught neurotic parents and teachers like me with our obsessive-compulsive control issues.

Yes, said Lucky, I see a distinct similarity between your fate and young female Chinese university teachers. Your age is the same as students. You are their brother. In China teachers were sisters. Students’ attitudes were, ‘be my friend.’ It’s impossible to be objective treating them like siblings. It perpetuates dependency versus autonomy.

I motivate them in the simple present, said SOL. Subject+verb+object. My fate is future past perfect, he said.

I am simple present and empty, said Lucky. The day after tomorrow belongs to me. Welcome to the insane asylum. I celebrate with crazies.

I invoke the Light of God within.

I am a clear and perfect channel.

Light is my guide.

Welcome to Land of Erasers. Turkish university students at TEOL loved forcing erasers across paper with passion, purpose and dexterity.

Erase mistake’s memory. There’s the rub.

  

In Banks We Trust

 

Every morning scared Giresun citizens lined up at banks before opening time.

In Banks We Trust. Give me your coins. Give me your artificially valued numerical currency with implicit trust. Give me your economic life. Give me your insolvent fear of financial collapse and worthless exchange. Give me your tomorrows. Give me your unlimited potential. Give me your laughter and stupidity. Give me your hope, the last evil thing to die at low interest rates.

Stepping with energy along a frozen alley at dawn an old bearded man wearing a knit cap and layers of cloth carried a sharp saw and wicker basket over his shoulder. Going to The Department of the Forest to harvest kindling. His best friend stumbled behind him staying one step ahead of death closing in.

Age whispered, Faster, faster. Enjoy the time you are given.

A young girl carrying a bouquet of red balloons walked past crumbling Ottoman walls. Her head scarfed mother gripped her hand in morning’s desperation. Stone stories sang as red, pink roses wearing thorns said hello to men haggling over silver fish. Are you passing through, said fish man, Yes, said balloon girl, there are not many things you need to remember about your visit to Earth. This is the day of my dreams.

 

 Give us a quick Giresun tour one fall afternoon.

 

You take a path away from bland towering apartment blocks watch time shops, sartorial dummies and modernity into a neighborhood of eighty-year old plastered stone/straw homes. A smiling curious Kurdish woman on her balcony asked quest-ion words. You shrugged. You didn’t know. You smiled. She smiled. Smiling is the answer. She shared Kurdish stories. Leaf plane shutter images whispered family and community minus alienation.

You wandered down another path and met a shaggy golden retriever chained to a wall. He was happy to have his ears scratched by Lone Wolf. Everyone stared at you playing with the dog. When they were distracted by nothing as usual you cut the chain. The dog ran free. Trailing thread a tailor emerged from his shop yelling, where’s my fucking dog?

Red, yellow and white wild roses said hello. A man planed wood for an axe handle at his shop. Honing laughter’s axe his bushy moustache and sharp eyes said he studied biology. His methodical passion reminded you of your father in his basement workshop on Independence Street. He respected his tools.

You visited a kind seamstress in her hole-in-the-wall shop. She fashioned a coin bag with satin ribbon drawstring refusing money accepting a smile.

You sat outside a teahouse. Across the street hard-working men and women with weathered faces haggled over farm tools, axes, hoeing instruments.

Young black haired men with strong backs, dark eyes, solid boots and motivation carried sacks of hazelnuts (Findik) to a wholesaler. He weighed them on a scale. Men sold their nuts. My wife loves my nuts, laughed one. His friend said, my wife never says show me your nuts she says show me the money honey.

Late light slanted off cobblestones.

A nursery gardener shook dirt off a small tree and cut roots. He helped an old woman bag it. Planting it in her garden she heard a woman crying in a Bursa cemetery water soil with tears near a gravedigger pounding a sledgehammer.

Everything must go.

Verifying her existence a woman studied her undulating reflection in a window of female dummies sporting wedding dresses. She glimpsed a serious fleeting vision of her calm beauty self-reliance and wisdom without a care in the world.

It will be cold in January, said Bamboo. Turning pages, yellow leaves sang, what a long strange trip it’s been.

The Language Company

 

Sunday
Sep042016

Intention and motivation

Attention

To: Secret Agent Wordsmith.

From: Godot. Nobody shows up. Nothing happens.

Discernment is everything in his mute Turkish life. Silent speculative tongues babble on community islands. Hustle tea with brown details. Clown town. Mother leads fashionable daughters. An old man’s shoulder weights a box of hazel’s nuts. A battered pewter teacup sits empty. A flaneur primps.

Inbreeding statistics reveal genetic truth and future medical issues at rural population control centers. Confront basic Turkish insecurities – loss and awareness with repressed aggression, sullen anxious attitudes, pervasive psychotic disorders and phobia.

What you don’t see between unemployed words is fascinating.

A cripple without legs heard laughter’s lymphatic memory. They were amused by a smile stirring sugar’s anger. A reader read a weather forecast to a friend. Rain. A black bearded man carried a chainsaw into a Giresun forest with intention and motivation.

The Invisible Ghostwriter


Down below love’s labyrinth looking for sexual partners 50,000 symbolic woodcarvers gesturing possibilities fostered benign footsteps telling 4,000-year old stories behind fish markets hearing catatonic voices seek meaning.

Quest-ions ran around looking for answers, Where are you? Come out come out wherever you are my bright little star.

Worry beads between male fingers worried themselves to death.

Alone and feeling cold, an old man stirred tea with ambivalence.

Love conspirators sang the blues.

Harmonic convergence polished black dress shoes.

A beautiful Trabzon university girl with shattered dreams and zero hope of being a boat captain attended an economics class.

Do the numbers. ABC. 


Chance


It’s come to our attention, said Deep State, we need more police – yes that’s correct...more police...more guns, ammunition, uniforms, plastic hats, plated belt buckles, shields, face masks, tear gas canisters (made in Brazil) water cannons, green parks in Istanbul, collapsed mines in Soma killing 301, authoritarian boredom, fear, self-censorship, zero social networks, NO judiciary, more imprisoned journalists, more GREED and less wisdom, compassion, freedom and tolerance.

A new directive was issued. Verb 3.

Eating is important for a balanced diet.

Turkish female robots with bored black eyes conducted international surveys wearing skintight jeans promoting small chattels.

Remember to accessorize your demeanor with high heels and a serious facial expression of:

1) disgust

2) stupidity

3) monochromic awareness

4) worry

5) anxiety

6) fear

The die was cast.

Fate and Destiny sang a duet.

Timing played Danishan melodies at 1644 hours.

 

Giresun Before Dawn Mid October 2012 6:02 a.m.


Mild air outside designer storm windows fitted with rubber air current verb modifiers played through grammar-based pine trees eating kabobs in The Department of the Forest.

Mother, may I sleep forever? Yes my sweet, she purred stirring tomatoes content in the context of creating a lifetime of dependency while baiting a sharp fishhook sentence snaring a gentle reader, Let’s Eat the alphabet.

Are you a victim or participant, asked Quest-ion.

A victim, said Turkish student-citizens. We are (free) willing victims. We eat loss for breakfast with twenty-eight varieties of olives. I am a proactive participant, said a linguistic Chinese waif. You are Other, said victims, a barbarian and a rouge element. We share everything, said Other. Eat your freedom like Lone Wolf, said a reliable narrator having their ears cleaned with sanitized stainless steel tools by a Cambodian woman waiting for Mr. ATM.

I have nothing to say and I’m saying it. That’s nothing, said Milling Around in Asia. I have nothing to do and I’m doing it. I sleep, eat and fuck. So what, said Curious, I have no reason to live except to find out what happens next in this adventure. I don’t have time for negative losers. Get a life.

Inside a frozen sterilized room planning his great escape under the cover of Sacrifice, a national holiday 26-31 October, Lucky scribbled by tenor sax. Blue Train echoed through empty rooms with acoustic memory.

This geographical derivation detour wasn’t his glass of tea or chai in local lingo.

I agree, said Z, Ya got get a move on. Get back where you belong. You did your work here, brought people some luck, helped others develop courage, made field notes and street photography, I don’t belong anywhere, he said, It’s ok, where you go there you are, your heart’s in Asia.

Where’s Franz Kafka when u need him? He’s living in Anatold you so as an unmuting amusing assumed mute protagonist so he is. The bureaucrazy night dream mare plays on...

Write another chapter, said Z to calm your tortured heart.

Scene: Giresun, 4,000 years later. I’ve been here before, said a fish in a bowl. What’s water? It’s all I know. It’s the first thing an infant needs and the last thing a dying person requests.

I am amused by Freedom said a woman opening her legs getting to the verb.

One word. One vision. One day. One dream. One chance.

Make it new day-by-day. Make it new.

Opportunity cost. Return on investment. Cost-benefit ratio.

Lucky paid now.

Putting profit before people, Trabzon English Language School paid later.

The Language Company