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Entry date: 8-23 -2023 – My Brain is Gooey (and The Bet) – Letters to My Friends

Dear Friends,

I realized yesterday afternoon that I used the same picture of Alex from our one and only Son of Crackpipe show twice in the last two weeks. I could change it, but I’m not going to do that. I’m to use it as a reminder to myself to have a better memory.

Yeah. That should work.

I wonder if any of my other friends of a similar age have noticed that a lot of the small, insignificant stuff just floats right out of the old mind these days. Things like, “Did I use soap?” or “Did I brush my teeth?” I’m such a fan of my rituals that if I get sidetracked or distracted in any way, my routine goes to hell in a handbasket pretty quickly.

Time just goes by so damn fast. How can anyone remember what they did ten minutes ago? I certainly can’t a lot of the time. My students think I’m an idiot, I’m guessing, because I can’t remember where I put things during the day quite frequently. If they only knew that I was also interviewing people, writing a bunch of things, making music, keeping my kids alive, and wondering how my wife’s day was going…on top of every other thing I do, every day. Maybe they would cut me some slack.

Their whole lives are slack, though. That’s what nine-year-olds are. A fucking slack machine in tiny sneakers.

Happy Wednesday.


Before long, Marcy started talking to Jonathan’s dead body. She checked it several times while she waited for Paul. It had been longer than two minutes, she knew that much. Where the fuck was he, she wondered.

Jonathan was still very much a dead man. She hated him a little bit for a few seconds. Why didn’t he come back? Wasn’t she all powerful now? Maybe she was just another Wizard of Oz. Would it be so bad to be a big fake? Could it have all just been a coincidence?

No, it was definitely not a coincidence. Even Betsy had managed to rest relatively pain free the night before. Her phone vibrated.

Where are you?

I’m in with Jonathan. Go to room 118.

She could hear Paul’s rushed but heavy footsteps outside the door before he opened it. Greg was following closely behind him. Paul stopped so quickly when he walked through the door and saw Jonathan that Greg couldn’t help but run right into him.

There was a third body trying to get in the door, too. It was Aidan Mann. Marcy could tell it was Aidan and not “Jimmy” right away. There was a completely different feel to him than what she had experienced with “Jimmy.” Later the next day, Marcy would be able to put words to what she felt in the ER room that morning. He felt human.

“God damn it,” Paul said over and over.

Marcy went to Paul, and as she passed by Aidan she gave him a look that seemed to bewilder the handsome actor. Aidan had an awkward look on his face, and it was clear that he had no idea who she was. Marcy dismissed this thought quickly, though, and focused on her husband.

“I’m so sorry, babe,” she said.

Greg moved over to the other side of the gurney and checked on the condition of what had once been Jonathan. He wrote something on the chart he was carrying and stood quietly with his friends and the famous stranger.

Tears were starting to stream down Paul’s face.

“I’m sorry, Mr. Mann,” Paul started to say.

“Please call me Aidan, Paul…(he paused for a short time as he looked forlornly at the body between them) I’m sorry, too. I think after all this, we can call each other by our first names,” Aidan replied.

“Babe, this is Aidan Mann. I think you know who he is,” said Paul, trying to be funny but failing a little, too.

“I wish this was under better circumstances. I believe you are Marcy?” asked Aidan.

“I am and me, too, Aidan. I’m a big fan. I hope we can talk later about what happened. I know you must be in shock like the rest of us,” Marcy replied.

The four of them stood around Jonathan’s body for another five minutes or so before Greg broke the silence.

“We need to get him down to the morgue. I’m sorry. Is there anything I can do for any of you?” Greg said.

Marcy shook her head slowly and Aidan and Paul both mumbled a hushed, “No.”

“Let’s go home, Paul, okay?” Marcy said.

“Sure. We need to make some calls, I think, too. Jonathan’s sister…uh…Aidan? Can we do anything for you? Do you need a ride somewhere?” Paul asked.

“No, Paul. I’m good. I have Jonathan’s car. I’ll follow you guys, if that’s okay.” Aidan said.

The three of them headed towards the lobby. Marcy split off from them as she had to get her car out of the employee lot. Her mind was racing. She turned to look back toward the room where Jonathan’s body was and saw an orderly heading in to fetch the gurney.

She felt sorry for the orderly. That was a shitty fucking job. She would find out in a few hours that she should have felt sorry for him in another way, too.


See you tomorrow.

Yesterday morning after our walk.

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