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Power

09/14/2012 04:06 pm ET | Updated Nov 14, 2012

Dear Waldo,

I'm going to tell you right up front that I'm a guy who fucks up a lot and it's no goddam good although it did lead to the idea I'm writing to you about. As you may be able to decipher from my use of decipher, I'm a smart fuck-up as are many other fuck-ups I know who just didn't take to the school thing thanks to home being so whacked, which is why on my fourteenth birthday I walked out of algebra with two big fuck-you fingers meant for everyone behind me except Mr. Milk, my English teacher who said my limericks were fucking awesome.

I'm changing paragraphs now in order to tell you about this unbelievable thing that happened to me. I am drinking way too much and I passed out and when I woke up I was on the pavement of some parking lot somewhere and there was this bumper sticker less than two feet away from my eyeballs that said "Power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely." I carry a pencil with me at all times just in case I get a great idea that could get me out of this fucking hole I'm in, and I found a bag on the ground and I wrote this power corrupts thing down because there was just something about it.

Then I got up and had the greatest time with my best friend Stevie who is sick as a dog right now and we passed out under some bridge and when I woke up I couldn't believe it. It was like someone's sending me signs. There was another one of these messages in spray paint on the cement right where I was looking up that said "Youth is wasted on the young." Youth is wasted on the young. I'll fucking say. How terrific is that? I wrote that one down too.

Then later I was helping Stevie throw up and when he finished it was quiet for a while and I took out that bag and looked at those two messages and they kind of blended together in my head so I took out my pencil and wrote down what I was thinking and I showed it to Stevie and he said You know what? That's the goddam truth. What I wrote down was, "Power is wasted on the powerful." Power is wasted on the powerful. Think about that. Stevie boy is right. That is the fucking truth. Them powerful sons of bitches in charge, any one of them, they don't got a fucking clue what it's like to be me and Stevie. The shit that happened to Stevie right from the start, foster fucking this, foster fucking that, I know some drowned fucking puppies that had a easier time of it than Stevie. But he's still trying. I'm still trying. I had my fucking plans. Didn't fucking work out. This guy I am, I hate that fucking guy but what am I supposed to do? We're walking on the side of the road with nothing. Please do not give me that shit about what money cannot buy. Everybody's got problems, but if you got money you got good fucking problems. No money, bad fucking problems. Me and Stevie, give us work, we'll work our goddam asses off. Give us a spatula, you'll get some fucking burgers flipped. Give us a screw driver, you'll get some screws screwed in I can goddam guarantee it.

But here's my big fucking point. You make me powerful, you give me and Stevie some fucking power, we'll know what to do because it's so fucking obvious. You ever hear of fucking food? What's the big fucking problem? You got piles of food, you got mouth-holes everywhere, you got me and Stevie going OK everybody, raise your fucking hand if you want a job. Now everybody that raised your hand, let's get some fucking food together and go stick it into every one of them goddam mouth-holes on the planet, on the fucking double. We do the same fucking thing with clothes. We do the same fucking thing with blankets. Then me and Stevie go to anybody with a dick, lay down the fucking law: If you end up with a kid thanks to that dick of yours, you and that kid's mother are going to fucking hold that kid and take care of that kid and do the best you can to make that kid into somebody who at least tries, and if you don't, sorry, you are off to fucking How Not To Suck At Being A Parent school until you get the fucking hang of it, how do you like that?

And how are we going to pay the fucking bills for all this shit you may ask. No fucking problem. Stevie's like a fucking arithmetic genius. He comes up with a number that represents the fucking idea of You Got Enough Pal. If you make more money than Stevie's fucking number, thank-you very much, you throw your extra into the extra pile and your name goes on this gigantic fucking thank-you board so everybody knows who's helping everybody else out.

And I know there would be all kinds of shit that me and Stevie would have no fucking idea how to handle, and maybe everything would go to hell, but at least we'd all go to hell warm and with full bellies.

Stevie's throwing up again. If we had fucking power, he'd be in this real bed with clean sheets and there would be nurses and doctors all around him saying Stevie Stevie Stevie. But the goddam thing is if me and Stevie had power long enough, why the fuck would we be any different. Soon enough, we'd be the assholes. So just forget the whole fucking thing.

Fuck it.

Lester

Dear Lester,

Fuck it indeed. Your letter reminds me that a lisp can undo the most eloquent speaker, and that bad spelling can drain the charge from the most electric writing, and that saying fuck all the time makes you easy to dismiss. It's a shame a kind heart these days isn't close to enough.

Your Fan,

Waldo Mellon

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