inside culvers

I’m at Culver’s waiting for my lunch to arrive.  I’m No. 15.  And my brain is working overtime.  I just left a shop about an hour ago, and I had to inform the owner that his usual discount is history.  “And the times they are a changin’.”

culvers meal

Ah, that’s good.  The burger is hot.  So are the fries.  I’m not a french fry fan, but Culver’s fries?  When they are done right, they are perfect!

Next, I’m headed to see my Mom.  And I can’t help but think that I’m just trying too damn hard.  Way too hard – to make people happy, to satisfy their every demand, always having to explain why, why, why.  Why the price increases, why the variances in blends, why the acquisitions, why the mergers, why the back orders, the whole shebang of problems, complaints, and emotional contusions hurled at me on a daily basis.  And all these things bleed into my private life like collateral damage does on the battlefield and the House and Senate Chambers.

mob bossNow I don’t know how other people cope.  But I can guess they have figured out a way or they wouldn’t be here with me in this chain restaurant having or waiting for their lunch.  I look around the place and what do I see? An overweight woman with scalding orange accents in her hair glued to her over-sized cell phone, taking tiny sips of her pop in between eating her fries.  There’s a couple to my far left who are holding hands.  She’s listening to him and gazing into his eyes.  I’d love to be privy to the conversation.  In front of them is an elderly woman wearing a loosely, ill-fitting light blue blouse chomping on her burger.  Alone.  And right in front of her, an older, gray-haired man who could pass for a mob boss.  Quiet.  Deep in thought.  How do they all cope with what’s going on in their lives?

Me?  I go for long walks at night with a cigar in hand.  Sometimes it’s for one mile, other times two or three.  I normally go at dusk or night when it seems, at least to me, to be quieter and less crowded on the streets.  Often my head in pounding after a day out on the road.  Selling takes its toll.  This helps.

I tell the truth.  Always have.  Always will.  The demands on a cigar broker are total.  And when you come down to this or any other business, it always ALWAYS sinks to the bottom line.  Period.  Done.  I couldn’t sell windows or plumbing jobs, or roofing – I wouldn’t.  The thought is abhorrent to me.  I have a passion for the leaf.  My raison d’être. But in the end – it’s the green scene gene.  End of the romance you Cuban tree huggers.

Ponder “the Comedy and Tragedy Masks.  These were taken from Greek Mythology. Thalia, being the muse of comedy and pastoral poetry; and Melpomene, the Muse of tragedy.  Muse, in this case, is a protector of an art or science.”


I can go into the history of these amazing theater props.  “But on a more practical side, these masks and others like them were worn in the Greek theater to distinguish the different emotions of the characters.  Their exaggerated look was so that people who were sitting far off were still able to see the character’s emotions.  The mouths of the masks were enlarged and designed to make it easier for the actor to talk and for their voices to project to the back of the auditorium.  Actors were able to play more than one character because of the masks.  When they played other characters, all they had to do was change masks.  Talk about being two-faced…LOL.”  (T. Dawn Gatling-Coates)

Take the damn masks OFF!

Get out of line!  Or you have Fritz Lang’s imaginary “Metropolis!”

irv bloodied

Have I become a “pseudo cōper?”  Walks or no walks. Am I being too honest or have I hit that wall, seen stars and then painfully pulled back with bloodied skin risking the truth.  

Being with Jean-Michel of De Los Reyes the last three days, I was inundated with a tsunami of information about the industry.  The man has an encyclopedic mind. He tells me that there is hope if we just “make enough noise.”  No no.  Not the bullshit uninformed rhetorical racket we’re fed on social media every day about how everything is “gonna be alright” now that Trump is in office.  Stop blowing sexually suggestive smoke rings. Ladies, it isn’t attractive.  Enough! That’s delusional.  That’s daydreaming.  Watergate. Babel.

Make utter chaotic unabashed pandemonium that will make a difference.  I’m talking meaningful, raucous, rattling noise.   

Offfff.  I’m tired.  I’ll stop here – I want to listen to all you bellowing . . .


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