Bad Things, Gerbil Sings, Awful Wings

urlSometimes bad things happen to awful people. Sometimes awful things happen to bad people. Which is worse? Which is better? Which is more entertaining? It really comes down to a judgement call. We all see things in our own way. Vive la difference!

Gerbil trama is no laughing matter. Until it happens to people you don’t like. Then it’s popcorn time.

What’s the point of living through extreme circumstances unless it is to gain valuable perspective that will come in handy when the shit rains down on someone else?

This is a story about some awful people I know and some brief exploits of their gerbil. Grab some shredded newspaper and get comfortable. It’s story time.

As an atheist I do not officially believe in karma. Bitter experience has been an excellent teacher on that score. I’m totally convinced there’s no such thing. But, due to simple laws of probability, sometimes the bad things can happen to the right people.

So there’s this guy I know who is a giant douche. He treats everyone he meets like they are children and he is the daddy. Even grown adults in all sorts of settings in such a way that is patently offensive and totally inappropriate. He’s the all knowing and everyone else only exists to be schooled in his magnificence. I’ve developed the penchant of referring to him as The Awful Person. And he really is.

The truly sad part of it all is that he really believes he’s a good guy. Never before in my life have I seen such a disconnect between self-perception and reality. Even most psychotic mass murderers at least know what they are. That gives them a leg up on this fellow.

When it comes to his actual kids, though, it’s like everything negative about him becomes amplified to the Nth degree. He’s like himself only on steroids washed down with a case of Red Bull. Watching him with his kids is a cringe-inducing exercise in torment. Every fiber of your being screams out, “It’s not supposed to be that way! Can’t you realize you’re creating little clones of yourself?” Hell, it was so bad I even felt for the kid.

But that’s the point of reproduction, isn’t it?

I think there’s an old saying that goes something like this: “He who lives by the shit dies by the shit.”

Or, in Abyss-language, “It sucks when your gerbils come home to roost.”

awful-peopleSo it was that I was none too surprised when a few cracks started to appear in this perfect little oasis of family. In her past life the mom had gone through one of the most awful divorces you could ever imagine. Then, halfway through his senior year of high school, the gerbil pulled a rabbit out of his hat. The little fellar up and disappeared and went to live with his real dad, the ex.

I had heard stories about this guy. Stories that curdled the blood. I mean, he did things so hideous that even the unethical and awful people took umbrage and showed great acrimony. That’s saying something. And then what happens? The gerbil goes away to live with that guy. Yowza. That hurts.

Thus began an extended period of gerbil high jinx. I’ll leave this part out. But good times!

Then as quickly as it started, it was over. The people began to realize their gerbil was back in town. He didn’t bother to tell them. They just sort of eventually came to know that it was true.

The gerbil eventually ended up at their door. It seems he was demanding some of “his” property. (Gerbils are notoriously possessive of that which does not belong to them.) Let’s just say there wasn’t universal agreement regarding who owned what.

The next weekend they went on a trip and when they got home, their house, against all odds, had been burgled. And what a specific type of burglary it was, too. A lot of the items of recent contention just happened to be among the items purloined, including the XBOX 360. All in all it was a few thousand dollars worth of stuff.

Cue the drama. It was as if Armageddon was at hand, judging from their reactions you’d think they were being devoured alive by locusts.

The other incident I’d like to mention started two years before present day. The gerbil had a friend who wanted to sell some mountain bikes. The two minors put the deal together, mom and dad provided the money, the kid charged top dollar, and the deal was done.

Back to present day. The gerbil is somewhere in town, a criminal on the lamb, and won’t even return his mom’s call regarding his Christmas presents and care packages. So they leave the shit on the porch of the house where they are pretty sure he’s staying and where he refuses to even answer the door.

Around this time they get contacted by the parents of the other kid. The kid that was involved in the mountain bike deal. Long story short, they want their mountain bikes back.

“What the hell?” responded the awful people. That was years ago. And we bought ’em fair and square. And besides, the gerbil and the bikes are both long gone.

The other parents explained the problem. Their kid never had permission to sell the bikes, and besides, the deal was only a “rental.” Now please return our bikes. Now.

Ha ha ha ha! I find it so interesting how shit like this keeps happening to the same people over and over again.

Of course they were just stunned by this turn of events. Thus a delicious little feud brewed nicely between the two families. It has grown to the point that their little worlds collided and they took hits on their reputation. There were common circles of friends and, of course, the church they all shared. Why was it that this awful family wasn’t returning what wasn’t even theirs to begin with?

So it was that something from years ago intruded into their lives. Their options were to return what they had already paid for (assuming they could get it from the gerbil in hiding who had cut off all communication) and be out all of the money they had paid as “rental” fees or say no and risk massive reputation hit in the worlds and friends they all shared. I couldn’t have scripted it better myself.

Sometimes it’s almost enough to give one hope.

4 responses

  1. Mostly, the story makes me feel bad for Gerbil’s mom.


    1. I feel bad for her, too. Oh wait. Awful person! Nevermind! 🙂


  2. This is unspeakably beautiful. The Awful Person will never see his own role in creating his dilemma, but this is close enough to make me very happy.


    1. The awful people remain blissfully unaware. Maintaining the ability to look down one’s nose from the bottom up is a true gift.


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