I don’t really have the drive, desire, or spoons available to write anything at night normally. I always just want to lie down and let my throbbing head throb in the cold and dark of my bedroom. However, a thought occurred to me tonight.

I was watching John Oliver, a episode he did a few weeks back about police reform, and it occurred to me that I used to live in Los Angeles, California. Now when I say I lived in Los Angeles, I don’t mean that I lived in the suburbs, we lived downtown for a couple of years.

I remember the LAPD driving around, handing all of us baseball cards. I’m assuming it was some community outreach thing, or maybe it was just a really nice cop that I just don’t happen to remember seeing constantly. What I do remember, is what was on the back of the baseball cards instead of the statistics that I loved, and still do love, to look at.

What I saw there, was a random police officer, it would give his likes, dislikes, a little like a basic interview format. Nothing important, nothing big.

Except, it kind of was.

Now I’ll be the first one to admit that I could be misremembering this entire thing, but when you are, as I was at the time, five to eight years old, you are highly susceptible to education and propaganda. Your brain is a motherfucking sponge that absorbs information more than life itself. It’s why you start school at that age, it’s why a lot of development happens all at once around that age.

So, I’m sitting here 35 years later realizing that they were handing us baseball cards with the baseball player that we all idolized on one side and an LAPD officer on the other. Now, call me a little jaded my old age, but I have a feeling that we were supposed to associate one with the other.

I may be talking out of my ass here, I understand that, I recognize that.

I remember my favorite baseball player when I was a kid was Eddie Murray. Eddie Murray played first base for the Dodgers and he was my fucking hero. We used to chant his name when we went up to Chavez Ravine to watch the Dodgers play live,and when he did anything, every kid in the goddamn stadium would go insane.

I’m not going to say that I remember the name of the police officer that was on the back of his card, but I remember it was a very tall white guy, and the reason I remember he was very tall, was because he was standing next to his police car, and the roof of it had to have hit him just about at the waist, again childhood embellishment notwithstanding.

So, were the children of the Los Angeles Police Department’s area of influence brainwashed to believe that the hero’s they saw in baseball players should be associated with those who protect and serve?

I am not smart enough to answer this question, I am just the old guy laying in bed with a migraine who had an idea and likes to write in a little blog.

Question everything Gentle Readers, nothing is for free, not even a baseball card.

The Help – The Assemblage – Madame and Monsieur

Monsieur had been raised with a purpose. He had known precisely what he was going to do in life since before he was able to verbally express it. It was not thrust on him, nay he had a choice to do anything and everything that he had wanted to do. However, who would not want to do what his Family did? Not the money, that was just a side effect of what they did, but to be a mover of mountains, a replacer of Gods, a maker and destroyer of man? It was an intoxicating thing that had sunk its claws deep well before grammar school had begun.

When, in whatever way his Père had known, that is was clear he wanted to follow the Family Way, he was placed in the best schools to learn precisely what he needed to learn. Business, Languages, Psychology and various smatterings of things to fill in the corners to make sure he did not come across as an automaton when speaking to the people he would be speaking to. He had loved art from an incredibly early age and he took class after class on the history of it and absorbed the knowledge like a sponge.

His Mère, gods bless her existence, took over his martial training directly. She hired everyone from karate masters to target shooters, Brazilian Jujitsu experts, and lords of techniques that had no name. He never learned to be cruel with it, he learned to use it, however. He was not a giant hulk of a thing so all the leverage he could get on his opponent was essential. Through the years he learned more and more, never tiring of anything his Mère placed before him.

On his twentieth birthday, as he was in Rome touring the much-touted secrets of the Vatican Archives with his father’s friend, a cardinal, a messenger ran breathlessly down the endless corridors to tell him the worst of the worst things he had ever heard.

Mère and Père had been taken to the Gods. The messenger, the youngest Edward to serve his family loyally was shaking with grief and yet maintained his composure as he told Monsieur that an airplane crash in the Adriatic was to blame and he was needed at The Estate immediately to assume control before others tried to “help” too aggressively and all that had been was destroyed in an orgiastic feed of greed and avarice by people he would never be able to accuse face to face of doing it. Monsieur wrapped his arms around the Edward, both as a comforter, and to be comforted by someone he knew had loved his beloved Père nearly as much as he had.

With grim resolve and serious doubts as to the validity of the plane crash reports, Monsieur returned home and began to not only run his Empire but to find out the details of who had taken those who had given him life, love, knowledge, and endless joy. There would be a reckoning, on that there was absolutely no doubt at all.

Madame had been raised to learn. She had read at three and excelled at everything in academia from an absurdly early age. There was no formal training in the sense of schooling, whatever she desired to learn her overjoyed parents brought to her in an instant as a tutor or private teacher. She learned a half a dozen languages, finance, and science, political theory and philosophy and still she could never get enough.

She never once asked what her parents did, she knew of course. One did not sit down and hammer things out and lay out the exact nature of things, it was just known and understood. Madame started to attend meetings with her father at ten, first as a cute distraction that remembered everything and then as a knowledgeable aide that delighted in sparring with idiotic people who seemed to think they were better than her because they thought she had less money than they did, (she had much more). respect for her never did anything but went up when people began to not only to respect her intellect but to seek it out for matters of importance. Her father and mother never needed to guide her away from the people she should not associate with, she was well aware of what a leprous animal looked like when it appeared to her covered in the costume of the day.

She was nineteen years old when both of her parents died. A car accident is what she was told, although she knew better, she knew better and never said a word because revenge should not be an open discussion among even the closest of friends.

Madame and Monsieur met at a function shortly after the deaths of both of their parents. They were instantly attracted to the personality of the other. The wise eyes of Madame, the kind knowledge of Monsieur. it is said that love, at first sight, is a tacky way of describing things, but there truly is no other way to put it. Within a year of meeting another they were married, Madame proposing to Monsieur on a riverboat in the Seine. There was fanfare over the match, two power families combining was always a sign of good things to come.

There were people who did not like the union, and Madame and Monsieur were well aware of them and knew precisely why they did not care for the match. It mattered not at all to them as they had confided in each other completely, no supremacy of one gender over the other, but equals in every way as it should be. Secrets and wishes, hopes and despairs were both worn like a second skin on them and together they planned and planned, one day they were going to be able to do precisely what needed to be done in order to avenge the murders of their parents, for that is precisely what it was, murder.

Standing in the main hall of the main residence, madame greeted each of The Assemblage in their mother tongue if it was not English and Monsieur gave each a customized gift to make sure they felt just a little more welcome into their home.

One did not lure the fly into the trap with something it did not desire.