UNtucking the Baphomet
The Adversarilist Ideogram
a written character symbolizing the idea of a thing without indicating the sounds used to say it, e.g., numerals and Chinese characters.
[As the title of the Flannery O’Connor novel suggest with “Everything that Rises Must Converge” that in stark contrast and in polar opposition that Everything that S(t)inks Must Coagulate. I offer the following exploits only in the expectation that none should necessarily follow my example. My heroes have always been non-conformist, fellow misanthropes, antiheroes, beatniks, Avant-garde Artist and noble, self-righteous to a fault punks. These words could have just as easily been inspired by Hunter S. Thompson’s Gonzo Journalism or a page out of A Confederacy of Dunces by the severely underrated John Kennedy Toole or best yet a vignette stolen from the cult film classic 1997’s Gummo. So in quick summation I’m going to quote Type O Negative here and the late great Peter Steele when he bellowed in his trademark baritone that “shit comes in all hues” and that he was an E.O.O. (Equal Opportunity Offender)]
Once upon a time…there i was getting inebriated off of some tallboy Steele Reserves (which can look and taste like swine piss or a cheap silver bullet being that it’s a Malt Liquor much like Lando’s O.E.) with a fellow good ol’ boi lets call em’ NateDawg. The panoramic environment was a picturesque Southern Gothic, kakaesque landscape of debris, detritus & equal parts despair. A pettily proud self-made trailer park nestled behind a pool hall which had mere weeks before been raided by the ATF and had innumerable assets seized for illegal gambling or some such. Beside the abandoned fiberglass shower/bathroom/renovation/ abortion set a miraculous fire pit encircled in stone and dug-out which was indeed large enough to Teepee innumerable wooden pallets and build an edifice that homeless pyromaniacs could flutter around like wayward moths and its ever rising flames could ascend ever onwards to indeed set the heaven’s ablaze. It never failed that the Fire Dept. was called out each time due to the inescapable fact of some city ordinance, us never inviting our neighbors over for the festivities, and lack of a permits, the inferno was quickly doused and our smoldering dreams along with it as they congratulated us on our overall safe construction but simply could not abide the 16 to 29 ft flames that jetted above the Dirty South’s horizon aided by the accelerants. Sorry I digress…the beer had run out along with the R&R rotgut whiskey and our transportation was nihil though our train tickets enabling us to board the locomotion was never in question. I laced up my Converse with shit for arch support and do as the Buddhist say “the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”. So with that said me and NateDawg got to steppin’. Some few miles later our gas station oasis destination had arrived.
Once inside the product now procured I noticed an associate of mine “Dannyboi” whom I’d worked with at a grocery store (Winn-Dixie, The Beef People) and as luck would have it was currently working behind the register. We’d both worked around other cultures to include a varied bunch one of which was an individual named “Byron” who was a well mannered Erkel-type whom I’d talked into joining The National Guard along with another named “Bochie” who was an odd Caucasian of a cracker (maybe even a stale saltine). On occasion when others were usually not around we’d pump our fist and say As-Salaam. Then the other party would return the hand gesture greeting with the appropriate response of As-Salaam-Alaikum. Now a days I would probably respond with a Shemhamforash to you too as well! Needless to say it’d been sometime since our last visit so I did the whole spill…fist pump and all at my old friend and got a laugh as me and NateDawg made our exodus backout the store and onto the large parking lot. There I found myself accosted by a dark skinned individual, gasp a African American, in his vehicle where I found myself cut off from NateDawg. Words were parlayed to-n-fro along the lines of “you know where you are” and as I leaned in the window his demeanor changed. A small pistol was being brandished just out of eyesight and aimed through the door at my less-than-bulletproof crotch. I believe when he realized that I’m Non compos mentis and not easily intimidated he lost interest in trying to teach me a lesson. This is not some strange boast but an observation I make at my own peril often reminding the daughters I’ve raised that for one my mouth has gotten me balls deep in some shit but that same orifice has ever so eloquently lifted me beyond the podunk quagmire and gotten me back out of those same Gordian Knot mishaps by being able to cut through to the heart of the matter and for two never text anybody anything you wouldn’t say to their face (as in person) in front of their back. That all said the individual had obviously been mad at my use of his perceived lingo or slang. He had been triggered. My Yall’bonics had been lost in the translation. This wasn’t created to flout the obvious pun but the truth is a brutal one in that I almost lost my life for a misunderstanding. The translation of the Muslim phrase I had used was “peace be unto you” and held no negative connotations. I’m not really arguing for sides or splitting hairs with the semantics nor do I say these things for mere shock value but ignorance of one’s culture or an unwillingness to study past orthodoxies will lead to repeating a past failure again and again until in eternal reoccurrence one’s own tattered Phoenix raises its head from the smoldering ash heap and squawks WTF!!! Or as it has been said on The Boondocks (a colorful carton/comic strip) that one should beware having a “Nigga Moment”…one where boastful ignorance disguised as street cred leads every race color and creed to Er against commonsense and decency forsaking all attempts at culture. Just as one jokingly might call a bundle of sticks a faggot the context must always be factored in lest we stereotype it all and repaint the scenario in a hue of malice. As in were we seeking to offend or merely pretend (in this day and age of PC Culture) offense. For the record I am not saying that I was right. I am quite ashamed of my inebriated behavior and what on the surface may appear youthful bravado but as the time passes seems more and more troublesome. I too am guilty and along with Kafka am awaiting the charges even though I remain on Trial. Just don’t assume my white guilt.
I do not reside in some hippy, dippity state and here rebel flags wave and hateful monuments abound. We remain 47th in everything excluding SEC Football. Its predominantly a “my way or the Yahweh” mentality with black and white and no room for that grayish spectrum which is the day-to-day minutia of our actual lives and not always that ideal to which we aspire or as I’ve heard it more astutely put “contradiction is not for the want of truth” and allows for a more interesting playing field where one is free to paint oneself into and out of theses pesky little corners of both dualistic and duelistic thought and allows for even the most aberrant of opinion(s) to be expressed (but never unchallenged). I’m soooo deep in the Bible Belt that we are unfortunately the Buckle. Being raised and indoctrinated at a young age summarily baptized/ceremoniously drown around 10 into the Southern Baptist faith (by my adopted uncle whom i call “Dad”, J.B. who was an interim on the road preacher—harkening the call of being self-ordained and going wherever a chicken was fried in the name of the “Lort”!). Around 16 or so, (despite being a Youth Leader/Teacher, Sound Guy and Deacon) I became insatiably literate and began to explore everything forbidden from back masking Suicide Anthems to Guttural Death Metal to PMRC stickered albums (which made them all the easier to identify with the Parental Advisory Warnings) to The Dreaded Necronomicon. I began to see it all as a morose Death Cult worshipping its own ends through a self-inflicted Mythology. All Religion became by its own excesses half Tautology and Thanatology Only later when i joined the U.S. Army i found that i could not put Satanist, nor even the catchall brand of Atheist, on my dog tags and had to result to “other” preferring not to have Father McDuffy preying above my lifeless corpse in some archaic ritual i never signed-on for. So then i began some 20 some odd years later to understand the subversive merits of Tucking the Baphomet in my initial encounters with Bible Thumping Backwoods Cretins. It allows them to stop judging me first, though my stitched inverted star on my throat, tattoos and piercings (gifts of a decade long career) are off putting enough, but if i feel inundated by ignorance i will whip it out and show my colors, in some display of elitism or start clearing my throat loudly and begin scratching at my throat. If further provoked i can escalate with a voice that’s as deafening as any Drill Instructor and begin with the knife hands that point to them the way of exodus with a vocabulary i have honed through years of sitting on a toilet after eating blisteringly hot and spicy food with a collegiate dictionary to nurse my bleeding anus. As a Disabled Veteran I pride myself on not just letting my appearances speak for me but have never let character be in question. Pure Motives and intentions are tantamount in a society which has increasingly lost not only its moral compass but its overall spine.
So thats my take on it. Now up the North way where tolerance is merely a rainbow flag away at the local TST its gonna be perceived differently as far as that original line of questioning of should one indeed Tuck the Baphomet. I do find mirroring their behavior to be a great approach because it forces them into an introspective state, etc. i say emphatically to the point raised do what is advantageous for you! One moment it might be to hide away a sigil you wear around your neck as both jewelry/ornamentation and never be so boastful or full of pride/hubris that you have to “represent” as it were. The most inflammatory approach to someone who is trying to get a rise out of you is to not give them the satisfaction. This takes the wind out of their sails as it were. Everyone has their breaking point with the occasional fist needing to punctuate one’s words. The Silver Rule or Lex Tallionis or The Law of Retaliation allows for an eye for an eye with little other justification needed. Regardless of how articulate you may be, Them’s fighting words. However, if someone starts preaching at you even after you’ve let it be known that you do not believe in their religion then decimate them within a fraction of their being. This can be subtle such as Untucking your Baphomet or i start clearing my throat a lot and scratching at the inverted star on my Adam’s Apple.
& Hail Satan,
The HELL Priest, XVL