Wednesday, February 19, 2014


Antonio Caballero, nicknamed the Crimson Cabal, CC for short: ginger, red hair, quick to anger, specially-cobbled dark shoes, pencil mustache, stern brow, one arm from a bull accident, forever bitter, failed gold medalist in short-track speed skating: crashed into the rest of the pack during his gold-medal run and was promptly disqualified forever by the IOC, the human version of Benson from Regular Show.

Brutus Sharpe, Bullshit, BS for short: 7 feet tall, major surgery on his legs required 7 makeup surgeries, sidelined him from a lucrative NBA contract, not bitter, goes with the flow, loves gangsta rap, likes to think his athleticism is the suavest thing about him save his smile, huge fan of both MJs, truly believes the Olympics can bring warring countries together through peaceful competition.

the IOC took a risk bringing these two together, but with the fires raging just outside the city limits, this would be symbolic if nothing else.

"are you Mr. Sharpe?"

"no, mon, i'm bullshit."


"Buuuuuuuuuuuuullllllllshit, pleased to slap skin, ha."

"okay, let's start this relationship off on the right foot, teacher/student, right? okay, we can't use that, the loudspeakers can't use that name when they announce you, so i guess we'll go with BS. are you sure you know how to skate?"

"yeah, brah, hockey mask and Jason and shit."

"no, figure skating, figure skating?"

"oh yeah, brah, figure 8, i got an A in maths."

"i won't waste your time. you don't waste my time. i've got one arm, i don't need this shit, i don't need any more shit in my life. i'm only doing this because they threatened to remove my other arm. i hope to love you as the son i never had after this, but no promises. you look like my son, if i were to have a son."

"yeah, mon, come on, there's still time, i'm not dumb, i passed kindergarten with flying colors brah, never had anything marked on my permanent record, was the highest ever at Harvard but being another doctor or lawyer is boring, i want to live, feel me?"

"no. let's get started."

there was only enough time for one major practice before the short program at the Olympics. CC was aghast when he saw BS "perform" for the first time. BS spent the first ten minutes stumbling and falling on his butt on the ice and the next crashing into the boards left and right.

"do you know how to skate? i mean do you know how to in fact stay on your skates, to basically skate at all?"

"no, but i'm a quick study, man, Harvard."

CC slapped his forehead with his good arm.

"are you okay after that? your body can take a beating on the boards like that?"

"yeah, man, this is just another Saturday night for me if you catch my drift, ha," BS swung and missed slapping skin with his teacher because there was no arm there in that space.

a crash course of lutzes, spins, toe loops, triple axels---well, axels---and as a last resort, twizzles, followed.

"you need to listen to me, for once in your life, take directions," CC spouted like a coach, "this is only gonna last one week, let's just get this over with, i don't like you, you don't like me..."

"whatcha talkin' bout, Willis," BS interrupted, "i love you like a dad."

"let's go. remember what we talked about. for the short program, you need to get in just the least amount of technical elements for it to count. don't do anything crazy, if you want to flip, do a single flip, if you want to axel, do a single axel, make sure you land each element and get the points, in and out, simple, uncomplicated, no falls, no distractions."

"yes sir, " BS saluted sincerely.

"as for the long program, the free skate, this is more of an artistic choice on the skater's part, it's up to you, it's anything you want it to be, move and shake and swivel and jump and flip and spin all you want, go crazy this time, express your hot art---your beauty, your self, your identity---on that cold ice. just don't do anything which would bring shame to our two countries."

BS looked up to the sky, to the huge jumbotron fastened to the top of the roof of the cavernous skating rink and smiled devilishly. "oh, i know exactly what i'm gonna do."

"no stunts, just beauty and grace, okay?"

the night of the short program, the first try, and CC is sweating bullets. BS is sweating comfortably in an ice bath with his headphones on.

"are you ready, Brutus? can our two countries count on you? this is the biggest night of your life."

BS was lost in the MUSIC HE WAS LISTENING TO, CLICK HERE, RIGHT HERE AT THIS LINK, his eyes closed having entered oblivion.

CC angrily swiped off the headphones, hurting BS's left ear. "what the fuck, man. listen to ME, not this flow in your headphones. I taught the greatest bull riders and matadors the world over, i know what i'm talking about!!!"

"language, brah."

"sorry, you're right, the state-sanctioned psychiatrist did tell me i couldn't use fuck and shit anymore..."

"but you just did," BS mused.

CC picked up the headphones he had chucked clear across the locker room and decided to try them on. he got into the music. he proceeded to do the Cabbage Patch to calm his nerves. BS smiled the whole time and put something in his dress pocket. "yeah, i'm cool, i'm cool," CC muttered to himself while doing the Running Man eyes closed, "take that, Ferdinand the Bull, you can't keep me down, i won life after all."

it was time for the short program. BS dressed in a pink tutu and ballerina slippers...which actually for CC it looked nice on his temporary student, if that was it CC could survive this night, i mean it was a tribute to Russian Ballet and everything, so whatever.

BS started off slow, but picked up speed. he was flying everywhere on the ice, from one side of the rink to the other, the crowd was eating it up, it was a frenetic energy, but it was still a contolled energy. first jump: single, good. he did crash into the boards. he did fall on his butt and had one of the girls who wait on the side to collect any flowers which fall from the audience after the perfomance help him up. okay, odd, not the norm, but endearing, CC supposed. definite mistakes, but no disasters. last jump of the program, keep it simple, keep it single: but BS instead tried for the quintuple axel...5 rotations around, 4 more than a single...he bounced off his head and into the arms of the loving crowd. he had the biggest smile on his face.

CC's mouth was open and aghast. at the kiss-and-cry booth, NBC zoomed in to their two-man conversation. CC noticed the large camera in his face and paused greatly before exploding right into his pupil's face: "what the damn!"

BS wiped the hard-earned sweat off his brow and smiled at his teach, "the Olympics, man, nothing like this moment, i'm crying on the inside, men can't show emotions, so..."


"oh, teach, can you like put in a petition to the IOC or something to have it not be every 4 years? i need to experience this, like, weekly, it can replace coffee for me."

the scores for Brutus Sharpe:

00.00 and 00.00, for a combined score of 00.00.

the crowd roared. Brutus raised his hand up to the jumbotron and jumped up in the air.

two days passed quickly and it was time for the all-important 5-minute free-skate long program. BS was dressed as Michael Jackson, complete with red jacket, glittering socks, and silver glove.

CC sighed before addressing his student for the last time: "*sigh*, okay, my son, this is your pep talk: go out there on the ice and redefine who you really are, become someone new, show the world your new you, express your art as only you can, dance your soul into oblivion, leave it all out there on the ice, fuck the judges, i mean damn the judges, only God can judge, and i am your god."

as BS was just about to open that little swinging door to the rink and hit the ice, CC used his one arm to bring him back from the shoulder to the carpet area off the ice. CC had a pained expression on his face, but his eyes were lit 'cause he forgot something urgent he needed to tell BS: "hey, hey! listen! remember! don't touch your crotch..."

"but it's Michael Jackson, man..."

"...DON'T touch your crotch, honor him in some other way, the generals are watching this, the governments are watching this, it must all be pure decorum or the peace treaty won't get signed. the 700 trillion people of this Earth are watching this, be good, be more thing: don't use any foul language when you do interviews or anywhere else, any terms for ladies you may be thinking about in that strange noggin of yours."

"i know, man, i got it, Harvard, brah, come on, i'm not dumb, respect, respect."

BS's long program was a beautiful medley of Michael Jackson tunes and spins and arcs and flourishes and dancing left to right, from one point of the skating area to the other point at the way other end, crashing into boards, falling attempting to do the moonwalk, and living the art.

those 5 minutes flew by, BS was at the end, at the pinnacle of his training, all of that hard work---those two weeks---had paid off for him in this moment, it was all worth it to live the Olympic dream like everyone else, regardless of which country you were from, what music you listened to, this would bring about peace, it was all summed up right at the end here.

BS raised his arms to the screaming, cheering crowd. he took off his silver glove and threw it down like a gauntlet forcefully on the ice floor. a woman hollered at that. BS touched his crotch. the women, and men, hollered at that. he took out a crumpled piece of paper from his dress pocket and uncrumpled it. he made sure the cameras were pointed at him, that his face was showing bright and big on the jumbotron and to all the citizens of Earth.

"where my camera at? is it Camera 5? Camera 3?," BS pointed here and there, "okay, that one." the cameras shot directly on his face. BS held up the piece of paper right next adjacent to his face so the message on the slip of paper was clear, concise, and legible despite all the crumpling. there was no mistake, the letters were written on there with the boldest of black ink, everyone could read it. the slip of paper said:


BS smiled his biggest smile yet, and his 3 front teeth were gold, silver, and bronze. he stood there in front of a hushed crowd with the slip of paper next to his cheek for 10 minutes. all of the women started to holler...then all of the men...then CC clapped with one hand which didn't make a sound.



Juliette said...

Your finest piece of black comedy, dear Phoenix. Very droll ;)

the late phoenix said...

thank you, juli, it's a new subgenre known as black-hole comedy...