SCENE EIGHT (8)
On 189 Chrystie Street
“взять себя в руки”
Pronunciation: VZYAT’ siBYA v RUki
Literal translation: to take oneself into one’s hands
Meaning: to pull oneself together; to calm down
“TO TAKE ONESELF INTO ONE’S HANDS”
‘I’m not fully happy with some central elements of my life’, thinks aloud Siegfried Sassoon the actor. I cannot exactly say that I am satisfied, though I do have many elements of a good life going; I am not using my human potential; not as an actor and not as a man. Siegfried Sassoon, the Cuban American actor is a begrudging friend of the resistance. He works as bartender in the night club called ‘The Red Fox Box”.
There are only several places where they cannot hear you, see you, record you and file you by number. And these places are not one hundred percent secure, they only make your detection harder and prolong your date of capture.
Bathhouses, fitness clubs, loud electronic music venues, camping & wilderness activities, dancehall parties and in the back of municipal ambulances.
I take to the woods. There are so many things we forgot to do when we became civilized; we lost innate mechanisms for our self-preservation; we became reliant on government, on governance on divisions of labor so infinite that we no longer possess any intrinsic individual use. Well, a great deal less any way.
I am following a new serial on Netflicks and Chill. I have no stomach for film or TV! I was classically trained in Moscow for the stage! For the fucking stage, but that is a dead medium now. I have bachelors in philosophy, I wrote my thesis on the history of time travel. I work as bar tender at an elite supper club in the Isle of Mann. I have a pleasant and attractive girlfriend, she is not as amazing as my last girlfriend, but she makes me happy and keeps things mostly drama free.
My father works for the military industrial complex. I rarely see him. My mother is a hippie still. It’s peace love and light, and then you marry rich; it’s good for your future, your children’s future. My father has a job I don’t know the details of; his company holds patents to space craft and commercial airlines, it builds them for the United American States; the U.A.S. has been the name of the 87% of the U.S.A. that was not lost to socialism during the Separatist Wars of 2012-2015. The Capital is now in Chicago. The 13% lost is called the Autonomous Administration of North and East America, the Isle of Mann is just over the river from the so-called ‘Breuklyn Soviet’; which is one of the most heavily armed hot beds of the sedition. The Bronks and Queens are confederated with it; Staten Island is an enormous military garrison, it got very blood for three years, now it’s all quiet. The rebels threatened to use atomic weapons and took hostages, I will tell you what appears to work; terrorism it seems to work every single time. It is actually understood to be far less bloody than conventional war, and a lot less expensive. Who fundamentally funds these rebels is a subject of great debate in the high class circles I run in. Oh yes, the upper classes are composed of big brained thinking men.
My particular club, like many of the establishments in cash rich, high stressed Isle of Mann, high tower living; caters to the millionaires and billionaires that compose what you might call were you to site rather populist rebel propaganda; the 2%. Wealth in the United States of America and subsequently in the United American States is a maldistributed slope like absolutely anywhere else in the 206 habitation sectors, em, countries. In virtually all 206 national harvest units the distribution is about the same; though there are sharp gradients in the peripheral and semi-peripheral zones; social welfare systems and trickle down economies have enabled most of the 46 Core nations to eliminate all obvious forms of extreme poverty; life below $1.25 a day. Underclasses of course exist; the Muslims in Europe and the Noires and Mestizos in the U.S.; but they are not volatile, starving underclasses, but observe the slope; same in peripheral zone Kenya, as Semi-Peripheral zone Brazil, same are core zone France; a slope of the underclass and “middle classes” that in raw net wealth and assets are not radically disparate. Suffice to say you could call much of the middle class, the working poor. And in any society the distribution of reported wealth, emphasis on reported wealth would show that with welfare, with subsidy; the majority of the citizens of any county; 80-90% are all on slope that tapers off at its highest mark at annual earnings of $100,000 per year; then you have a 5-10% of the Bourgeoisie, the Upper Middle Classes, white collar managers, athletes and celebrities with earnings let’s say between $100,000 to 1 million per year. This still is not a radical accumulation of wealth, not in the scale needed to exercise power. Control of political and productive mechanisms. And then you have a class in itself, what they called in Occupy the 1% is actually 0000.1% of the remaining population; a Kleptocracy; more appropriately called; the Oligarchy. Organized into clubs and factions that see national boundaries as mere human resource brands, or more appropriately the names of various large scale mega plantations.
I did not come to any of that by reading the manuscripts or hearing the speeches of Zivistan, Solomon, DeBuitléirs and other famous rebel orators. I am no prole, nor were their Partizan songs written with my class in mind.
These Oligarchy men do not even come to my supper club. But I pour their managers drinks. I pour their entertainment drinks. I stay sober sometimes while their supervisors drink and I know about things like robots, clones and the great salt mine. I knew that the ‘new Panama Canal’ had already been built in the 1980’s. I knew this from the mouths of babes. The call girls these lackeys bring around. I have smoked joints with fellow help and shared what we’ve all heard about the great wide world.
Zivistan tried to recruit me no less than twice to twenty three times a year in round about and direct appeals to my level of awareness. I long suspected he would ask to spy for him, or something trickier. I’m a man of privilege, but not impervious. My father is well connected because of his company’s trade in trains and planes and missiles; but if the secret police took me there would be not very much he could do. I have friends too from the Club in which I work; but honestly when they take you they take you away. Your body is found in a tragic accident or a suicide, but that’s not your real body; you end in a container ship and then in a secret prison and that’s all she wrote.
I once wondered if “Kawa Zivistan” could ever analyze the sacrifice of his own privileges. Being white, being raised upper middles class from a family with land. Well his father is no lesser oligarchy but still they were the House of Zivistan! Excuse me, the House Adoneav. An esteemed lesser Ivory house allowed into certain elite clubs, given lands in both the District Financial and the Hamptons. Allowed in professional trades despite being Ivory. Well, suffice to say that house was eventually outlawed and obliterated after the Great Revolt.
They stripped his Ivory father of all his land and military rank. Then they executed his entire extended family. This is all I read in the underground papers. Sometime immediately after the Great Revolt began. The 803 Martyrs of the House Adonaev. They even hunted down and killed and tortured many of Sebastian’s past lovers.
‘The world to come’ is not a much changing world from the worlds’ before it, though Sebastian Adoneav now more infamously known as “Kawa Zivistan” is still working overtime to make his many enemies pay for their crimes. There are always barbarians at the gates, slaves in sex cages and unrest in the colonies. It has always been this way, it will always be this way; who am I or Zivistan or any in the Resistance to clamor for ‘a new world and a new way’. Zivistan and I used to sit in the downtown bathhouses and I would hear his yarns. I could hardly believe much of it was real. We were in university together, though I never joined his movement officially. Never took the plot outside the steam room. The House of King and House of Zivistan were of relatively equal social stations. He seemed to disregard my sympathies to him and grow angry as we got older that I didn’t wish to die on some barricade like him; but there are not barricades now; there are only strange events. Strange changes to reality that happen to keep up with the future science and black magic making war.
Nothing is what is what it seems! Are these vast plantation camps or are they so-called developing nations? Is democracy about speaking freely or is about governing together? Why has the winter not ended for three years in grim Massachusetts? Why do proles take trains to serve others in the Isle of Mann and those trains take 45 minutes, but I know and Zivistan knows that to get from Manhattan of Breuklyn Soviet you need a plane or a 40 mile base jump down a mountain. Are you a citizen or are you a serf? Did America win the Cold War? Why is it half of the lesser, and one third of the greater oligarchs all have Russian names? What is a Princeling? What is the Bohemian Grove? Who are the Free Masons? When is it time to smoke a joint and join a conspiracy theory, or get your cock rubbed via Netflicks and Chill? How much is a human life really ever worth?
Make us a good price! I came to much of these realities during my senior thesis called ‘A History of Time Travel’; which explores the metaphysics behind parallel reality states, fourth dimensional travel and such themes of Pre-Soviet parapsychology.
My ex, I can’t say her same as it was so painful to lose her. Her father is a Greater Oligarch. From she and from Kawa Zivistan and also from the whispers of the lower echelon elites assembled at the Red Fox. I learned that truly nothing is as it seems.
Kawa Zivistan, before he embraced the Baha’i nonviolence teachings of Sheikha Saadiya Usmani and was inducted into the Blue Lodge. He was a killer. I watched him evolve. I saw him go between talk and action over a period of ten years, he was changed by his experiences in the colonies. Palestine first then in Haiti, then Syria and into the imagined wilds of Greater Kurdistan.
I think almost nobody knows what year it really is. How far in the future we actually are. But this actually was the profound elegance of the New Social Gospel, it is open ended and egalitarian. Disciplined, principled but wildly inclusive. Most importantly as it tidies up mythology, religion and science; it grounds all who approach it. Ground you in the now as well as the infinitive continuum of being.
I will not speak to what did or did not happen during ‘the Millennium Theatre Hostage Crisis’. There are wildly different accounts. I never saw him again after that night when the whole country first learned his name. They say he died. As did thousands of hostages being held all over the country that night! Then a calm. Then a great gold mist blew over North America. The internet turned off. The world outside our country was blacked out. In that gold happy mist changes were made. There was no more Zivistan. There was no more United States; the entire population was put to sleep. When we woke up out of the dream, out of the week following the Millennium Hostage Crisis. Some estimated 13 % of America was a wild rebel free zone, and 87% was called the “United American States”, had always been. And you couldn’t take a 45 minute train to Breuklyn, no this violent anarchic thing called Breuklyn Soviet was a 40 mile drop off a cliff where the East River used to be. There was mile high wall between the edge of that cliff; and I was still in the U.A.S., which had always been the U.A.S. But, Breuklyn, Queens, and the Bronks were no longer Federal territories. These were now autonomous zones we were prohibited from traveling to. Rebel cantons. Lawless zones of sedition. American Soviets.
I got a letter in the mail from Kawa Zivistan, after he supposedly “died”. I guess a courier moved it across the lines. The letter stated he was interned in a special engineering camp not far from Boston, another recently liberated City State. He told me that shortly his compatriots would be taking him out of the camp ad returning him to “Breuklyn Soviet”, which was of course he claimed now ‘free.’ And what did he want, why had he written? Of course he wanted something. He never was capable of just having a normal friendship. He had taped a micro USB chip to the letter; it contained god only knows what. Nothing would shock me. He letter asked to go to 7th F.D.N.Y. E.M.S. Outpost in Chelsea. To a paramedic named find Anya Drovtich. To buy her a drink and give her the chip. Just commit treason, matter of flatly.
I had met Anya Drovtich once before the letter said. ‘A bad Muslim sexy Polish chick with the dreadlocks and red Hijab.’ That narrowed it down quite a lot. What the rational person would do, despite having knowledge of a highly irrational world, even sympathizing with the resistance secretly. Having bathed and been friends with supposedly dead public enemy number three, behind DeBuitléirs and Solomon, ahead of famed Jamaican Rebel Tabor commander still at large in the so-called Breuklyn Soviet Mickhi Dbrisk. I remembered this Anya, I let them both in the Red Fox Club once on night against my better judgment. They were planning to take hostages. In the end they were ordered to stand down. Zivistan got drunk and pole danced for her in a private room. He wasn’t always so dower, unsmiling and totally humorless.
I look at this letter in my hand and I wonder what I should do. Turning it in means incriminating myself. The televisions have said he was killed in the hostage crisis along with co-terrorist Emma Solomon. This is proof of sorts he is alive; maybe his prints are on this hand written letter. His security culture is sloppy I know. Maybe throw it away? What’s on this micro USB chip? Should I even open it? Maybe this all a setup, maybe the Joint Terrorism Task Force is looking at anyone Zivistan used to know and I used to Banya with him twice a year, he’s been to half my theatrical openings. Maybe it’s another purge. And why would he send this to me? All of these years later. He’s been officially dead for over three years.
Yes, the hostage tragedy happened in 2015? I think so. 2017? Maybe, they say never forget but I do forget. So much happened, so much was changed. So many people died in the Millennium Theater Hostage Crisis. I know, what the public doesn’t know which is that the rebels were very close to using nuclear warheads against major Americans cities. Leveraging that was what allowed the Separatist victories. I know that Department of Homeland Security pumped gas into all of the hostage points, four if I remember and that gas killed most of the hostages, not the rebel small arms fire. I know the official story is that Emma Solomon, a citizen of Spain and Kawa Zivistan a dual citizen of the USA and Trinidad, some allege, also Illubador lead some forty terrorists into a packed showing of a new Broadway play and held hostage some 850 people, mostly the Crème de la Crème of the lesser Oligarchy in New York and celebrities; and then coordinated seizures of buildings happened in Las Angeles, Atlanta, Houston and Chicago; and then there was 48 hour five site siege; and the terrorists called for an end to the three year Separatist Wars and independence for 13 Soviets; 13% of USA’s territory, including all of the Puerto Rico sex colony. Then, blood, fire, gas and then as if nothing had happened all. Just like a mass shooting or a bombing in Baghdad.
I ask myself, I ask you; what would you do? The world is falling apart, the wars are closer and closer to the top of the mountain; no one is safe. What is on this USB could be highly consequential, or could be a test or a set up. Plot upon sinister plot.
Anya Drovtich who I have met only once. How consequential is her role in the Resistance, how close is she to Zivistan. What should I do? We all know at the Box that the Secret Police are cunning; 17 whole agencies spying on us. You never know when you’re being filmed only when you’re maybe not being filmed; we carry these fucking phones everywhere like the mark of the beast.
In the woods I am free; there are of course cameras in the woods too, there are even cameras I read inside dogs and cats; inside bees! It can make you a little insane to keep reading. There is no conspiracy your rational mind declares! There is no oligarchy! There is just the high, the middle and the low classes; a product of their merit and work ethics. Whites are on top because they work hardest, we all know that! And life is certainly better in the United American States, which has always been the name of our country; then anywhere. Definitely better than that corrupted, vile violent mafia federation of Russia. Which I do live dearly having studied their as an actor for a year. And evil red China with its pollution and one child woman killing polices, which I do love dearly, my ex the love of actual life being half Russian, half Haan. I digress. Well most of the proles have never left America. Most of the upper middle class if they have left America they’ve gone to Europe or the tourist garrisons of the Caribbean. Or banal Costa Rica, the C.I.A. eco-colony/ sugar brothel. Who can say they’ve seen the world! Who has laid eyes on the Salt Mines! On Kandahar! On the night train of Beijing to Moscow. Almost none, and thus they cannot believe the things the resistance says are happening, are even real.
One year, maybe Gregorian 2010 Zivistan and I went to the Russian bathhouse on 88 Fulton and maybe he liked the Banya so much cause we can talk freely, no phones no hidden mikes, you’d hope, no cameras, you’d hope. Or at least the illusion of privacy in the stream and sweat. He took out an envelope and showed me pictures of the atrocities in Syria. He told me they were preparing to send fighters and medics would I go? Would I raise money? Well I feigned enthusiasm but ultimately contributed nothing. Like when he’d asked me to carry out some operation on the trains they were planning. Well anyway, everyone they sent into Syria was killed. He was shortly after arrested and tortured for sedition. And by Fructidor 1st, Labor Day 2012 the Great Revolt had begun and the rebels soon took Breuklyn, Queens and the rest.
History will absolve almost everyone! I have looked this man dead in the eyes in the steam of the baths and heard him say seditious things and never informed. I am still absolved. One day people may look back at their uprising and say they committed atrocities, they were extremist, anarchists even! They tipped the arch with their fuckery! If you showed me video of Zivistan executing four men with a shot gun, like the one they played on TV. If you tried to tell me Zivistan was really a Persian sleeper; a Shi’a triple agent. Like they said on TV. I wouldn’t believe it. I wouldn’t believe he’s killed a single person. They just seek to ruin him so his words mean nothing.
I ask myself again what on this latest USB? A list of names? I could bring it to Haan Town, they would tell me for a pretty small price. Or maybe I’ll bring it to Anya Drovtich. Hand it over to the Banshee Underground to get it where it need to go. Those people can move anything.
I want this last thing clear. I am an actor. I am here to capture the human experience and make it relate. But the craft on stage is dying, it’s a bourgeoisie fringe event. That Hamilton brought back black face-white face, claiming to empower people of color, forgive me while I quietly vomit in my hands. I am making the last round of drinks on the Titanic, and knowing what I know, seeing what I saw; you cannot escape the coming war. Too much was accumulated for too long and now, well now I need another drink.
A New Orleans whiskey or a Mescal maybe. Something mega Smokey. I’ll just head to work and if I can think of a clever way to get Ms. Drovtich this token of our mutual friend’s appreciation, I’ll do it not for some cause, not because of the atrocities, not because of anything. Because if Kawa Zivistan is alive, if he’s passing women notes again. Well a loyal droog, and I think myself a loyal droog to him; I will pass his note along.
I am not an old soul, but I do remember the past. I did write a book on time travel; I know that Kawa is a serious person who has suffered a lot. That he is also a mad man and possibly a terrorist, well cheers he is also my friend.
Comrade, I know you cannot hear me. I know it is not safe or prudent to hand Anya your calling card. I will either follow her after her shift ends on the ambulances, or I will call 911 fake a medical emergency have her take me, or some accomplice to the hospital and in the back of the ambulance where we believe no one is filming us; I will hand her the USB.
They used to say on the TV; ‘if you have nothing to hide why do you care if we watch over you’. Then there was fucking Snowden. Who defected to the Russians and testified that every single cell phone call, text, email, even ToR and snap chat was stored in National Security Agency server warehouses. Filed and linked to social security numbers. Even when Patriot Acts I, II and III came out; basically canceling out whatever proud rights Americans thought they had; we said we were not terrorists, who cares, drink booze, and watch Sports; Netflix and Chill! They used to try and tell us on TV Democrats and Republicans were different somehow. Well they things they say are different, but now both parties are suspended under the War Powers Act of 2077. Who’s the President of the U.A.S.? That’s what Anya the F.D.N.Y. Paramedic will ask me or my accomplice. After our name and ‘if we know where we are and what day of the week is it. The orientation questions. If she asks me ‘who’s the President of the United States of America’, instead of asking me who is the President of the United American States; well that’s resistance code.
Kawa told me in the letter, ‘When they take you, pretend you’re very, very drunk.’
I wonder if I will see my old supposedly dead friend ever back to happy. What would make a man like him happy? A nice girl. A life on the beach? A fast car? A published book? Well everyone has a price do they not, we all have a price. Sadly, what I think will make my old friend happy, as happy as he can be at this juncture. “Falsify a medical emergency, avoid detection by using some proxy you seduce and pass off that card to the underground. That would make me happy.”
Well he put as much in explicit pamphlet writing: “The aim of the entire Great Revolt therefore is to take full control of the means of human development at the most localized levels without using unnecessary violence to do so. Thus we harness our collective might to secure our human rights entitlements once and for all.” But there was something more to what he was doing than all this rhetoric. That’s why people listened to him and risked their lives for his various visions. Albeit sometimes very begrudgingly.
One time he was very, very drunk. And he told me about the execution. The very brutal execution of his first love and co-conspirator. Some woman named Emma he had known in the Jewish Military Colony, when it existed. On the eve of the dark years.
Initially. I helped him because of that story, not any political idea. I was moved by how much they had taken from him and how far he was willing to go to hit back. Thus my sympathy with the resistance was not based on an ‘imagined community’. It was a basic human bond. Something inside me knew this man was going to take this up the mountain as far as he could and we all need something to believe in.