April, 2015


Friday, April 24th, 2015


Here’s a sneak preview of my latest project.

David Harrington Campbell

A bunch of us are perched around the pool, drinking beer and smoking pot and playing cards, two tables of four for Rook and one table of four for Spades.
At my Rook table is my husband, Luke, and wife and wife Ann and Nancy.
David has a colonoscopy on Friday.
Who dealt?
I think I did, Nancy says.
Yeah, you did, I say.
I bid 135, Ann says.
Luke just loves to talk about my ass, I say.
I smoked a bowl, a couple of bowls, before I had mine, Ann says.
That’s a good idea, I say. 140.
You can’t make 140, Ann says.
I want that green 1, I say, pointing to the top card on the widow, the only one that is turned over.
Luke says, David thinks the Rook’s in the widow.
That’s good news, I say. What’s your bid?
Pass, Luke says. Ann is his Rook partner.
I pass, says Nancy, my Rook partner. She slides the widow in my direction.
Wait. I’m still in, Ann says.
Sorry sweetheart, Nancy says to Ann.
You can’t make 145, I say.
145, Ann says.
There yours. I slide the widow in Ann’s direction.
�What did Luke say about your ass?�
�I�m having a colonoscopy on Saturday.�
�Friday,� Luke says.
�Friday,� I say. I look at Luke. �Do we still have some of that stuff we got from what�s-her-name?�
�Yeah,� Luke says. �But do you think it�s a good idea? You don�t smoke that much weed.�
Since Ann bid the highest and picked up 5 extra cards from the widow, she now has to discard 5 cards after she rearranges her hand, hopefully for the better, which is the point of bidding and winning the 5 cards in the widow.
�Trumps are green,� Ann says as she lays down a green 13.
I play my Rook. Luke plays a green 12. Nancy plays a green 5.
I rake in our points.
�Takes 40 to set them, Nancy. We�ve got 25,� I say.
Ann smiles.
I lead with a red 1. Luke plays a red 9. Nancy throws on a red 10 for 10 more points. But then Ann trumps with the green 1 that was on top of the widow. She then plays her green 14, a trump.
�I think I will smoke a bowl before my colonoscopy,� I say.
We play the rest of the cards out. Ann makes her 145 bid.
Luke is driving our azure-colored Jag up the 163, toward the clinic where I am about to have my colonoscopy.
�My asshole is gurgling,� I say.
�I hope there�s not an explosion.�
�Don�t make me laugh,� I say, firing up another bowl.
�You haven�t had anything to eat in what, two days?�
�Just one. Or one and a half.�
Luke nods.
�Maybe I have smoked enough. I�m just nervous. I don�t like strangers looking up my asshole.�
�They actually stick a camera inside you then watch it on a video screen.�
�Watch what?�
�The procedure. When the Doc is looking for polyps.�
�Watch my asshole on TV?�
�Well, the inside of it, David.�
�Oh, joy.�
Luke drives into the parking lot of the colonoscopy clinic.
I pull down the visor mirror and look at my red eyes. �I better put on my sunglasses, the prescription ones.�
�The big black ones?�
I put my monstrous sunglasses on and open the Jag door.
�Let�s get this over with,� I say.
As Luke opens my car door, I whisper in his ear.
�I�m really stoned.�
The young nurse at the front desk asks me if I followed all the directions, if I took my Dulcolax and my Prepopik as prescribed.
�My what?�
�Your Prepopik, the bowel preparation.�
�Oh yeah, that. I did. I shit my brains out.�
�That�s the point, sir.�
�In fact, I feel a little dribble back there right now, coming out. My asshole�s been hissing and growling. Can I get a gown or something, or better yet take me to my room.�
�You have forms to fill out. That�s why we asked you to be here one half hour early.�
Luke steps in. �Can�t I fill out his forms, I�m his husband. He really needs to get back in an exam room. He hasn�t had anything to eat in days.�
�I know it�s difficult, sir.�
�You don�t� know shit you little prick,� I yell, surprising even me. �I realize you went to Harvard and this is the only job you could get and now you�re sitting here talking to me about my asshole and you�re pissed because your life isn�t working out all that well because of us baby boomers and yeah my generation did fuck up your world but guess what, I�m not one of the people who helped fuck it up, I was recycling before you were born, I was putting gray water on my hydrangeas when you were in grade school.�
Luke leans in and whispers to me, �pot is supposed to make you mellow.�
�That�s what I thought,� I whisper back.


Wednesday, April 22nd, 2015



Mr. Ben Affleck’s being told that some of his ancestors owned slaves and then his attempted cover-up, which never works but is kind of understandable, got me to thinking about the southern part of my family.

Were slaves owned by my half-southern family? Who knows? I kind of doubt it. It would have been a long way back and I don’t think my ancestors on either side have been here long enough. First of all, my father is a Campbell, the “fuckers who killed the McDonalds.” His parents emigrated from Scotland and he was born in Canada and raised in San Diego. My mother’s people could have possibly been wealthy 5 or 6 generations back, but if they had money they lost it so it serves them right if they held slaves.

In my mother’s family, the Hackler side was a haughty and preening bunch. Aunt Rosa Lee, my maternal grandmother’s sister, who was part Indian I’m almost certain, lost her mind in her 50s and lived for 25 years curled up in a fetal position in a nursing home in Wytheville, Virginia. The Livesay side of my mother’s family was just plain hateful. And mean. Though one of them, my great-great grandfather, died in the Asylum in Marion, Virginia. Madness on both sides. Whoopee.

On Dad’s side, come to think of it, his only sister, Viola, went to bed when she was in her 50s, most of it spent at the Cloisters of Mission Hills in San Diego. I don’t know what was wrong with her. Some whispered she was felled by a broken heart. I do have a picture of her wrapped up naked in a blanket of sea weed with another naked woman, both of them splashing in the surf.

So if the southern half of my gene pool owned slaves, I have no historical record of it but then I haven’t been asked to go on that television show where Mr. Affleck learned of his slave owning ancestors.

I had a nanny named Nanny from the time I was born until I was 10 when my parents divorced, and she was black, and was a surrogate mother to me (not my sister, another story there). I used to drive with Momma to take Nanny home about 20 minutes away and as often as not we went into Nanny and her husband Arlee’s house where Momma always had a shot of moonshine with Nanny and Arlee. I think I might have had a nip or two as I got older.

Anyway, this whole business with Mr. Affleck got me thinking about Nanny and Arlee Thompson.

c. 2015 dhc llc