Idyll’s End

Three more days of vacation and then back to work. Which is a problem because I don’t believe in work. Vacation is hard enough because you gotta worry about oversleeping and spending your time and therefore your life wisely, why add work on top of it. Every second at I’m at work I have to meditate to stop hating everyone there. Which is why I live and work in countries where they don’t have guns. It’s to stay off the evening news. If we’re allowed to say that we were born the wrong gender then we should be allowed to say we were born in the wrong caste. I think I’m a rich kid who was born middle-class by mistake. So tolerate me and say I’m brave. Move me up to the highest strata and then kindly fuck off.

 

The Land of 5,000 Virgins

This is an old piece that I re-wrote and put up on the Crusade today:

1933749_504496034427_7219_n

What was the best job you ever had?

The best job I ever had was being a Campus Safety cadet at a small Christian college in Southern California, a place I called the Land of 5,000 Virgins. While we were there we all signed a contract stating we would not drink alcohol, have sex, smoke cigarettes, take drugs, gamble or dance. Four years, zero beers. The result of signing away my vices. But it was all good. I had never even sipped a beer so I didn’t know what I was missing. Back then my liver was so pristine it could have filtered drinking water for the White House.

Strong branding on campus for Team Christ. There was a 20-foot tall mural of Jesus painted on brick by the cafeteria. He looked like Charles Manson at a toga party. There was a Communist-grade firewall on the campus internet to block porn. There were zero parties. Just 5,000 sober virgins drinking coffee on Friday nights. Playing Monopoly and shit. My classmates were future mega-pastors and Republican senators. With no beers to drink and no sex to have, I had nothing to do. So I applied for a job as a Campus Safety cadet. Thirty-two students applied for eight open positions. I torched the interview. I reeled off some bullshit about discipline and punctuality and I got hired. Of course I did. That Fred was something special. 17 years old and the prince of the universe. The world was mine to crack in my hand like a Christmas tree ornament.

They gave us utility belts and maglights and keys to the campus and combat boots. Young pigs in training. I brought my own aviators. My radio callsign was Zebra 7. They told us to do parking enforcement, perimeter checks, door unlocks and escort duties as needed. I did none of these things.

Because they also gave us golf carts to drive around campus. What were they thinking. I wonder how they could have expected us to do anything besides fuck around with these golf carts. That’s like asking a lion not to eat the slowest gazelle. I got a pressure gauge and lovingly inflated the tires on mine and took the extra gear out of the compartment under the seat to make her lighter. I was Harry Potter and she was my Firebolt. I got her up to fifteen MPH. In a world of ten MPH carts, I was king.

I had drag races in the parking garage with the other cadets. And we played chicken. And real-life Mario Kart; we tied balloons to the carts’ frames and chased each other while shooting at the balloons with airsoft guns. We sat in rolling office chairs that we tethered to the back of the carts and slung each other into leaf piles.

My swagger was severely outsized for a guy who at that point hadn’t kissed a girl yet. I was pretty sure that any idea I had would work. That I’d get away with anything. I’d find the cars of kids I didn’t like and tear off their parking stickers, then write them a $50 ticket while resting my boot on the hood. It was OK; their parents owned Orange County Lexus dealerships. Also since I was a white guy from New Hampshire who grew up in the pews I’d stop brown students and ask them for their IDs, because I thought they might be Taliban operatives. I didn’t know any better yet.

The school paid us $9.14 an hour and that was a king’s ransom. Especially for 2006. You can’t even get that in 2016 at McDonald’s. But it wasn’t about the money. I would have done it for free. At $22,000 in tuition a year I was paying my own wages anyway. It was the best job I ever had. Because you can’t replace who you were. I miss having the raw confidence of a kid who hasn’t touched the stove yet. Uncomplicated joy.

Soon enough I flew too close to the sun. They fired me when an officer caught another cadet and I turning 360s in a cart. They only fired me, because I was driving. I’d never been humbled before. It hurt. I took it hard. That was the day I joined the dark side. I had to start drinking to numb the pain. Soon enough I’d drowned Jesus. That’s some irony for you. I’ve had my fun since then but goddamn, if you give me a chance to be a virgin with a golf cart again you better believe I’ll take it.

fredcolton.com

Saturday Night

20151227_010015

Saturday night, aka the Hookup Olympics in the college bars. I was on the scene but only as a spectator. I have a girlfriend so being out on Saturday is the definition of pointless. But the boys wanted to drink, because we can’t conceive of any other method of socializing, so I rolled up to join. Rob also has a girlfriend and also has no reason to be out, so we got some of this thick beer with cinnamon on the rim and threw darts on the outer orbit of the room. All this neon, all this getting it in, and then there was us: A couple grown-ass men in the corner, looking like we were afraid of girls. And I am afraid of girls. If I walk within a three-foot radius of a vagina then my woman will somehow just know it and I’ll wake up with a Swiss Army knife pressed against my scrotum.

I won darts by accidentally tossing a double bull. I’d been aiming at the twenty. Then I got a text, mom’s engaged. Some Jewish lawyer from AA. She’s never even had a drink before. She probably just went there to prey on vulnerable men in recovery; smart. If you were wondering where I got my old schemes from, look no further. Anyway, Fred’s getting himself a stepdad. I had some more beer and then found myself getting pissed that the wedding would be dry.

They’re over 50 and in love, which I can’t comprehend as a possible reality that I’ll someday inhabit. I’m still trying to conceive of a universe in which I’m not a young person and my girlfriend is not a short young baby who looks like a high-schooler. I wonder how people can be happy any other way than the way I have it right now.

 

Vacation, Motherfuckers

12540653_10100330124694947_8288000640161924706_n

Get off your boss’s dick and fly away. Hike around with your salary lumped fat in your pockets and buy some motherfucking bamboo wall hangings. Buy two venti drip coffees, three goddamn beers, ten plates of sushi. Have vacation sex on a mattress with a different bounce to it. Wear a kimono with a hotel logo on the chest. Be a prince for a little bit. Try to find the train; cling to your city map like you’re Indiana Jones and had to shoot a guy to get it.

10314517_10100330125353627_344816984567011859_n

Japanese people are hushed and reverent. Meanwhile back in Korea they scream and hack mucus on your shoes, park fruit trucks outside your window with bullhorns on them. I wish Japan had won the war and imposed manners by force. Turned the whole continent into a quiet temple courtyard, only noise you hear is harp chords lilting on the breeze. But America had to drop bombs and fuck it all up.

12552960_10100330125159017_6752662535822107882_n

Tokyo was what I wanted. Incomprehensible and perfectly foreign. 100% more foreign than any Star Trek planet. A beautiful place. Should net a cool 20 likes for the Facebook album. Not bad for a social media dinosaur such as myself. I look at the people in the background of my photos, wonder if I’m in some Japanese guy’s America Facebook album. I tell myself that people online will admire me because I traveled to a place and took amateur smartphone photos while there. They will equate the city’s charm with me, because I was there. I am international rogue and their gravity does not apply to me.

12507533_10100330124784767_2641946448709804857_n

Until it does apply. At some point you gotta fly back from whence you came. And Seoul burned us up as we re-entered the atmosphere. The nicest place in Korea is Incheon International Airport and it was all downhill once we left it. Got into my villa where it was -9 Celsius and the pipes had burst. Toilet was a block of ice. 24 cold hours waiting for the engineer to come. 24 hours in The Homelessness Simulation Experience. Had to pay the worker a king’s ransom to get back to the comforts of the 21st century. The school I work for owns my place and I asked them to pay for repairs; they told me to go fuck myself. And just like that, I’m back on the boss’s dick.

12509904_981662608569225_3659285761283778729_n

Japan

image

In Tokyo. Happy to report that the legends are true. Five-story towers packed full of milkmaid outfits and porn with the crotches blurred out on the Toshiba flatscreens and blowup dolls of ever conceivable configuration. You can get a blowup of a white woman with rhino-rolls of fat, if that’s your thing. You can get a mechanical dildo machine that piston pumps your asshole, if that’s your thing.

It’s better than Korea. I don’t want to go back. Because Koreans are pretty cunty. They’re so racist they barely like themselves, let alone white devils. But in Japan, a place where you would think the people would have every reason to despise the foreigners who immolated all of their cities seventy years ago, they adore you. If you look lost they’ll come up and ask where you’re trying to go. You wonder how a culture that’s so polite ever produced the barbarians who raped a whole hemisphere.

I’m in Korean mode so I keep speaking that to the locals. Which confuses the hell out of them. That’s like a Mexican walking up to me in the US and speaking Greek. There are very few robots here. Tokyo feels like the future, but a used, dirty, Total Recall future.

There are some geishas and schoolgirls. There are no trash cans on the street because homegrown terrorists used to put bombs in them. We’re staying in a hotel the size of a closet but at least it’s not the common room of a hostel. I hate pretending to be affable. I also hate not having the gym and my smartphone for mindless scrolling and my writing time and the fact that my blog is deflating as I neglect it, but you gotta spend money and live your life sometime. More pics up on Twitter, if you give a shit and have never been to Tokyo.

The Girlfriend Experience

Screenshot_2016-01-15-16-25-07

I.

I’ve put my dick in other girls; she’s sat on other guys’ dicks. Drives us both crazy but there’s nothing to be done about it. You can’t unfuck somebody. It counts forever. Now that I care about this girl I’ve come to detest alcohol, nightlife, biology. How dare anyone who is not me enjoy these things. Particularly, how dare any other male enjoy these things with a girl who would then eventually come my way. Reprehensible. Maybe the Christians were on to something.

II.

Cleaning the place yesterday and we found a condom wrapper by the bed. Not from her; we don’t use them. There are a hundred million reasons to date someone, but that’s #1, in bold and all caps. Because wrapping it up is like having sex with nerve damage. It’s like getting an honorary degree in fucking. Yes, you did have sex, but only technically. Not in the filthy caveman way that the thrum in your loins commands you to.

I swept it up. It’s old. Don’t worry about it, babe. It’s from the Jurassic era.

Then I went to empty the dust pan. Knew it was about to be an icy five minutes. Because you know how the mind of a woman works. Everything is heightened. Her seeing a condom wrapper in my place is like me finding a drawer of large dildos in her place that are labeled “NOT Fred’s Dick.”

III.

So fucking what if you’re a player, or if you were one. One night stands are the opposite of hard. You’ve got hot hot hormones working for you. Throw some booze on the fire and it’s game over. Bragging about it doesn’t even make sense, but tell the gents that. These guys are holding out for a high five like they shot bin Laden. Meanwhile a relationship is a 10,000 night stand. Sustain that, motherfucker. And the whole time through you gotta be a chef and a therapist and a hostage negotiator and keep the house inspection-ready. By comparison this is what you have to do to be a player: know the lyrics to “Shots.”

IV.

But there’s more. Since she moved in the real question has been this: how on Earth do I find myself the time and place to jack off.

Fred At The Office

20160105_120011

At school. I’m drinking strong sour coffee, wishing it was beer. Tired of teaching so I’m screening Inside Out for the kids. I wonder what’s inside my head. Probably a lot of bad writers. Or maybe a Situation Room, full of bad generals advising the president to do the same thing that didn’t work last time.

Going to the bar tonight. I need to keep my social skills from atrophying downward onto the autistic spectrum. Gotta stockpile banter, so I’m on the phone right now absorbing content. Making a Murderer, Golden Goddamn Globes, El Chapo GoPro raid footage. And that’s just today. Who the fuck can keep up with all this homework. Let’s go back to just three channels. Blow up the Internet. Kill all the apps. Everyone shut up.

Time for lunch with the other teachers. Bean sprout soup and kimchi. As always, I’m the only one in the room who isn’t a trilingual intellectual. TV is playing the same headlines on North Korea from 2013. Annihilation is imminent, says Wolf Blitzer. The South Koreans disagree. They don’t give a shit. The North is just the drunk neighbor who throws a bottle through the window every so often but that’s it.

The co-workers ask if I want to go hiking. I tell them I’ll think about it. But I won’t. It’s cold because it’s January and we’re right next to Russia. When it’s cold outside the air hurts. And besides that, a Korean hike is a disaster. They drink soju at the summit and then stagger back down the hill and get lost. An hour to round up all these old drunk prunes in the woods. A further three hours of barbecue after that. Eh, sounds like it would be a much, much better use of my existence to just stay inside cradling my phone, gently kneading my balls like Greek worry beads.

Anyway. Only a few more weeks of dodging invites like this, then on March 26th it’s off to Vietnam. Pretty much anywhere America has waged war I’ll go live there. Be a prince because I speak neutral Hollywood English. And still continue to perform my incredible trick of finding things to complain about.

Here’s Some Blog Content For All You Skimmers Out There

20160109_172650

Another Saturday in my amazing life as a white person abroad. Just got into Seoul but lied to my friends and said I wasn’t here yet. Need some me time. I’m in Itaewon’s illustrious Tom & Tom’s, second floor. Coffee now but probably booze soon thereafter. After a quick run over to Tokyo next week I’ll have maybe eight Saturdays left in Korea. But it’s not like that means anything anymore. I’m married. As in my girlfriend moved in and we went shopping for cookware. As married as two people can be without that dumb party with the Chicken Dance.

She’s out lingerie shopping with a photographer for a shoot. A male photographer. Just the two of them. Oddly I’m not jealous. I believe I’m better than many, if not most people, and jealousy is an issue many people have, so I should train myself to not have that issue. Though I do think the dude’s smart. There are no female photographers in the whole world, none at all, just a lot of conniving men who invested in a Canon and strafe girls on Model Mayhem with this message: LOVE your portfolio, you should come meet me and maybe I can show you some of my photos, with my dick. As a retired player I know a good racket when I see one. I have a camera; show me your tits. Nothing oblique about that, gotta respect it

Good thing I retired though. Club rats age in dog years. Before long I was gonna be hobbling around out there like Peyton Manning. Crows feet and diabetes. Now I just have to defy the odds and make this relationship last. Ignore the stats on failures. Dad and all his brothers, mom and all her sisters. No one could make it work. Troubling. At least I’m better than most people, that’s a relief. Don’t know how I’d manage if I weren’t.

You’re Not Smart Enough to Sell Yourself

Atlantic Pic

I loved this article I caught on The Atlantic last week:

Hit Charade

It’s about the business of popular music. All of your Big Hits are created by maybe a half-dozen people. They have the perhaps unteachable instinct for what the people want.

A quote on songwriting:

“The songs are written industrially as well, often by committee and in bulk… almost no pop celebrities write their own hits. Too much is on the line for that, and being a global celebrity is a full-time job. It would be like Will Smith writing the next Independence Day.”

So don’t be too impressed with Taylor Swift. What a relief it is to know that they don’t do it all.

On audience attention spans:

“[in a song] you need a new high every seven seconds—[that’s] the average length of time a listener will give a radio station before changing the channel. [A Roc Nation co-founder says,] ‘You’ve got to have a hook in the intro, a hook in the pre, a hook in the chorus, and a hook in the bridge, too.’”

We’re all carnival barkers with seven seconds (probably less) to get the audience into our tents, and even less time to keep them there. Hook, hook, hook, never lag.

On familiarity:

“Pop hitmakers frequently flirt with plagiarism, with good reason: Audiences embrace familiar sounds. Sameness sells.”

Which made me wonder: why mix up a new color when the people have shown that they only want the primaries? I like experimenting and using new tools. But I also like not doing that. When I’m writing, hitting the same old notes gives a thrill, just like how sugar always tastes good. Both avenues (making new magic, or re-capturing old magic) are just as challenging.

And we know this isn’t limited to music or movies. I wonder to what extent our superstar writers are packaged. Do the editors behind a good bestseller just give suggestions or are they veto-wielding overlords?

I think it would be cool to be a product, honed and trued by people who know what connects and who know the psychological whys behind marketing. Be a sellout, why the hell not. I’m just like everyone, I want to be loved for saying something. I’m pretty good at lying and saying I don’t, though.

Thank You For Your Submission

 

reject

but your best output will not suffice to hold an audience. In all likelihood your brain is miscalibrated. The thoughts you subconsciously elect to capture are no different from the rest of the masses, and your re-expression of them only compounds their inanity.

But please, whatever you do, don’t give up. Keep going. Focus your anxieties here instead of parking a truck bomb outside a Stephen King book signing.

***

There really is no benefit to writing except that it’s soothing, sometimes. So never give up. There are all those links that ricochet around the web about that. Before Abraham Lincoln was president he failed at everything… couldn’t even tie his shoes. Success. I think it would be more comforting to read the countless other examples. Like the dude in art class who produced a hundred thousand paintings and they were all shit because he just never got it and his work never connected with another soul and then he died. But he enjoyed the work so that’s what he did, and so his life wasn’t all that bad actually. That’s the lesson that doesn’t cater to our inner whisper that deems us the Chosen One, that’s the lesson we need.

Defense Against the Dark Arts

Just dropped this over on the Crusade:

 

Harry Potter was banned in my house because of the witchcraft. And for good reason: Eighteen years later, the whole literate world now guts infants in a coven to appease Lucifer. Mom got that one right.

No Halloween either, she said.

It’s just fun, Mom. It’s just a costume.

Fred, a lot of the people having “fun” are people who don’t even know they’re lost.

Wow, that’s truly scary, I thought. Can I go see Spider-man? I asked.

Maybe, she said. We have to check the reviews first.

So onward I floundered, with a social arsenal devoid of pop culture ammo.

Even after I punched eject from the church I just assumed I couldn’t do anything. The summer I was 21 I had Mary over three nights a week. She brought edible lube applied it liberally. We’d get right up to sex but stop, stay there on the goal line for an hour, throbbing and wriggling. You’re such a tease, she said.

Yeah.

I’d sigh and roll over. I assumed she’d recoil and smack me with lube-slick fingers if I suggested we get a condom. Nope, not at all. But she had to have been mortified; she’d turned another guy gay and thought she’d done the same with me. What persistence on her part, though. And what thirst. This was pre-Tinder, she really had no options besides this lapsed Baptist up the 5 Freeway.

Stayed clueless for a long while. I thought trickery was required; a month out from age 22 I lied to notch #1 to get it in, said I wasn’t a virgin so she wouldn’t have that stress on her. But all guys lie to get in so it’s OK. And she didn’t care. Then later I figured out what to do, in the whole dance of vice and how to do all its rituals, and became one of the lost ones completely.

Sometimes it sucks; nothing is taboo anymore. Momma might have been on to something. Though the stance on Harry Potter is unforgivable; those books were dope.

 

Relapse

Sick again, from all the Siberian wind blowing out of the north. Razors in my throat. In a perfect world I’d simply die from this and not have to teach tomorrow. Instead my girlfriend will give me honey tea and I’ll forge on ahead.

She lives here now. Extreme Apartment Makeover ongoing; I didn’t even own salt or cups before she got here. She’s French and lives up to it, feeds me cheese and crackers in bed. I used to be fit but now it’s over. I have to stop her from burning my suits. But overall it’s a win-win thing here. Either we stay together and it’s all good or we break up and I can use her to make the next girl jealous, and her the next guy. Win-win.

New Year’s a few people lost their minds at that party, especially me. Still wincing over it, some real harsh shit that I said. In the aftermath it made me feel better to hear that two good friends were severely depressed. Maybe it had to start like this. I think 2015 went a little too well. Like Godfather II setting up that third one for failure. I worry that it was kind of a high water mark, which is a dumb thing to worry about, because time isn’t real, but sometimes I still do.