Chess Is Stress

Afternoon, fuckheads. Happy thanksgiving. “Don’t alienate your friends by calling them fuckheads.” OK, then: if you’re a friend, of mine, and you’re reading, this web page, then after this sentence it is illegal for you to construe yourself as the “you” in these sentences. Fuck you. For real. Choke on a chokeberrry. Suck a suckberry. Leaf a leaflet — straight up your ass. With chokeberry ink. You fuck.

Playing chess is intensely stressful. I’ve played a total of maybe ten games in my life, moast of them when I was [shut up] years old, being felt up by a majorly foxy hobbit, like the cutest female hobbit in the shire. I’m going to fuck you up with one of those switchblade combs. You’re like — Oh shit, he’s got a knife! You’re relieved: oh, dude, it’s just one of those novelty switchblade combs. But: Oh, shit, he’s not letting up! He’s really lettin me have it with this comb! He’s, like, jabbing  me all over my person! I’m getting the shit jabbed out of me!

Yeah you are.

I start to lose at chess and I get frustrated and impatient and want to give up immediately. It’s the same thing with “the ladies” (a.k.a. “women”). Everything’s fine at first — I’m like, Whatevers, I’ll open by making my pawn go out two spaces. Why not. It’s summer vacation, everybody’s waterskiing, so hey I’ll waterski, too. It doesn’t matter that without a shirt on I look like if every contestant on the worst-ever episode of Double Dare combined fatty forces and turned into one megafatkid contestant — I’ve got like five Hollywood game show kids’ stomachs lovingly embracing my one stomach. And someone appears to have written homoerotic doggerel in cursive Sharpie across my stomach. It won’t wash off. I’m on television. I’ve got painful flatulence. There’s a leaf of iceberg lettuce here being filled with unspeakable fluids.

Got my Pawns, fiddlin around with my knights, the old horses, whatever, maybe spritz her with my bishop. Suddenly, or maybe eventually, things get dicey. My horse is threatened. Her goddamn bishop takes my knight. Fuck this. I hate this. I give up. I don’t want to be here anymore. Now there are rooks knocking on my door, looking at my queen’s ass, jiggling my king’s balls with bare hands — humiliating. All my pawns look on in mute horror. Some of them make sweet, failed attempts to help. I can’t believe dad’s just standing there while those guys say that stuff to mom. This is awful. Why is dad such a pussy? Why doesn’t he say something back? So I get messy. A crazy, unthought-out attack puts them back, momentarily, on the defensive. Very momentarily. I start sloughing pieces and then it’s over. I’ve taken plenty of their pieces, but what does that matter? It doesn’t. What matters is “winning.” I’ve probably learned something from playing the match. I finish feeling impotent, stressed out, ineffectual, weak, and, above all, stupid. I hate myself. My girlfriend (hypothetical) deserves the winner of this chess game, not the loser. I am the loser. I wanna live on an abstract plane.

On the train after today’s plane I was reading Alan Watts. Found it at mom’s house. Was a gift to me long ago, never cracked because I teenly thought I was “over” Taoism. I am enjoying his philological approach. Ideograms in the margins, calligraphy.

Didactic but good reading for a northbound BART car full of earbudded frowning white people with Thanksgiving knapsacks on their laps:

You are asked—temporarily, of course—to lay aside all your philosophical, religious, and political opinions, and to become almost like an infant, knowing nothing. Nothing, that is, except what you actually hear, see, feel, and smell. Take it that you are not going anywhere but here, and that there never was, is, or will be any other time than now. Simply be aware of what actually is without giving it names and without judging it, for you are now feeling out reality itself instead of ideas and opinions about it. There is no point in trying to suppress the babble of words and ideas that goes on in most adult brains, so if it won’t stop, let it go on as it will, and listen to it as if it were the sound of traffic or the clucking of hens.