the half-light of poetic inexactitude

Last week I performed stand-up for the first time. Afterward, one of my friends asked me how I felt. I said, “Well, it burns when I pee. I don’t know if that has anything to do with the comedy, but it might have something to do with being in the bar.” Thank God I’ve never seen anyone expose themselves there, because I’m sure I would have had pinkeye the next day. It’s a little scary getting out to that outpost on East Colfax too. I’m aware that Denver doesn’t have any really bad neighborhoods, but the basic aesthetic of its downtown and surrounding neighborhoods is a wedding cake floating in a pile of crap, and it makes me slightly nervous to think that a lot of the people I pass on the approach either by car or foot are aborted abortions.

I don’t know why I joke about abortion so much, since apparently I’m the only person in America that doesn’t really care about this issue, except as an example of how the political parties exploit peripheral issues in order to pretend like there are real differences between them. For example, On TV yesterday one of the Republican candidates for senate in Colorado claimed she would be able to balance the federal budget by, among other things, defunding Planned Parenthood. Crossing off Planned Parenthood should definitely be good for several hundred billion dollars, especially since as everyone knows unwanted illegitimate children are in no way a drain on society.

Obviously this whole abortion debate nonsense isn’t going to go away, even when masquerading as a budget issue, nor desist from annoying and distracting the whole country, so I propose a new compromise: hunting season for fetuses. Limit abortion doctors to three months of the year when they could bait their hooks and go fishing up their patients’ rivers to their heart’s content. Since spring is supposed to be the time of year when the heart swells, that would probably be the time to have it, especially since it would be set in artful counterpoint to the other hunting season in the fall. The Division of Fish and Wildlife could even post the dates for both together. Something like: “Game-hunting season: Sept. 1-Nov. 9. Fetus-hunting season: from the day when daffodils first begin to bloom to the day when the cherry blossoms fall.”

Not that I am one of the hysterics that thinks America is about to be overrun by religious fundamentalists, whether Christian or Muslim, but I know who is hoping that Islamists prevail: the manufacturers of tents. Because then they will finally be able to get into the lucrative business of women’s fashion. I picture Coleman unveiling the fall collection of kerosene lamps and evening wear. And if there are any girls out there hesitant about throwing a sheet with eye-holes punched in it over their heads and wearing that for the rest of their lives, the marketing people can always try to persuade them by telling them that every day will be like Halloween.

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