There's this misconception that the Navy is this cruise ship, and you get to go out and sail around, and every now and then, you have to swab the deck. But, no, it is a very impressive group of young people that live at sea, in this place that's very uncomfortable. They exude a pride that is well-deserved.
I regret always writing, writing. I gave my kid the whole plastic bag of marshmallows, so i could have 20 minutes to write. I sat at my mother's deathbed, writing. I did swab her mouth with water, and feel her pliant tongue enjoy water, then harden and die. Before I had language, before I had stories, I wanted to write. That desire is going away. I've said what I have to say. I'll stop and look at things I called distractions. Become a reader of the world, no more writer of it.
Maxine Hong Kingston
I had to de-program myself. From myself. Had to reinvent rituals of purification. So full of the vagrant pollutions of others. It was time to detox. Not only from alcohol, sex, and drugs, but from needy leeches who looked to swab me with their sores. Detox from my own needy lechery. Had to locate the center wound and cauterize. Undo the original sin, the origin of my sickness...Had to learn to replace Them, It, Want, Hurt, Anger, Sorrow, Loss, with Power, Healing, Wisdom, Fulfillment, Satisfaction.
In my younger days dodging the draft, I somehow wound up in the Marine Corps. There's a myth that Marine training turns baby-faced recruits into bloodthirsty killers. Trust me, the Marine Corps is not that efficient. What it does teach, however, is a lot more useful. The Marine Corps teaches you how to be miserable. This is invaluable for an artist. Marines love to be miserable. Marines derive a perverse satisfaction in having colder chow, crappier equipment, and higher casualty rates than any outfit of dogfaces, swab jockeys, or flyboys, all of whom they despise. Why? Because these candy-asses don't know how to be miserable. The artist committing himself to his calling has volunteered for hell, whether he knows it or not. He will be dining for the duration on a diet of isolation, rejection, self-doubt, despair, ridicule, contempt, and humiliation. The artist must be like that Marine. He has to know how to be miserable. He has to love being miserable. He has to take pride in being more miserable than any soldier or swabbie or jet jockey. Because this is war, baby. And war is hell." Page 68
YOU'RE NOT BLOODY SWAB PARADISE YOU'RE GOLDEN STARS LICKED TO STICK A WORLD WITH FROGS AND MAGIC TRICKS FLOATING LOGS AND SCISSOR KICKS AND LEMONADE AND SWEATY SEX HUG ME LIKE I GAVE YOU CHECKS YOU KISS ME LIKE THE UPPER CRUST TELL ME THINGS TO MAKE ME BLUSH CHAMPAGNE BOTTLE, BON VOYAGE A SOUVENIR GARAGE A MELODY TO MAKE ME SMILE NOT THAT YOU'VE BEEN GONE A WHILE A PURPLE MEDAL EIGHTH PLACE BACKLIT IN A TROPHY CASE SIGN THAT SAYS "FOR LITTLE ACE" SUPPORTIVE LIKE AN ANKLE BRACE NOT BLOODY COTTON SWABS AND LIES STOLEN CHECKS AND EMPTY EYES YOU'RE A COUNTY FAIR IN JULY CANADIAN FIELD OF WILD RYE YOU KISS ME LIKE POTTED PLANTS BITE ME LIKE FIRE ANTS TOUCH ME LIKE AN OLD STAMP OLIVE OIL AND SEVEN LAMPS NOT STOLEN CASH I'LL PAY YOU BACK BLOODY PARADISE ATTACK YOUR SUNDAY AT THE PUPPY TRACK TIME TO TAKE THE LONG WAY BACK SWEET AS THE APPLE OF PERU THE INKLINGS OF THE EASTERN SIOUX NOT BLOODY COTTON SWABS AND LIES STOLEN CHECKS AND EMPTY EYES BUT RATHER...
Buck 65 Remix