My 1-hour return flight from Gatorade, Ariz., where I attended the first annual crossdress-in of Drag Queens for Jesus, was, well, heavenly.
I held hands between helpings of salted nuts and sticky Goobers with dream-boat attendant Chance Ankleman.
Five-thousand feet above the Arizona Desert, Chance and I sneaked off to the in-flight, unisex loo for a private, unscheduled stop-off blessing. I must say the view of things below was spectacular! (Especially off-limits Area 51.)
While there's little chance Chance and I will settle down to wedded bliss – he's a Recovering Catholic and I'm a non-recovering senior citizen – mixed marital mileages seldom stay on track – heaven knows it was fun while it lasted.
(Two days, 6 hours, 24 minutes, 10 seconds. Those last 10 seconds were, well, breathtaking – no doubt because of the altitude we were flying at in a non-pressurized cabin. It occurs to me: maybe that's what causes Chance to wink a lot. Gaydar gone off on the blink.)
I confess I was in a funk returning. It's been years since I've been swept off my feet by anyone special. (County commissioner hopeful Covey doesn't count – let alone guys named Ankleman. And, anyway, I'm not into that kinda appendage-specific kink.)
Frankly, I was about to throw in the proverbial recyclable towel – cancel all my "let's hook up for fun, position (and profit)" desperation Craigslist ads – when on the drive back I saw a digital billboard that caught my attention.
It flashed, LET US MIND YOUR BUSINESS! Alternating with: We will think for you! What caught my jaded eye was the halo'd face of a smiling gent, long hair, bearded, guru type, pointing an index finger and – surely this is an auspicious sign – winking at me. (My gas-pedal garters snapped!)
Settled in at my studio, I immediately called Chance to chat, only to learn his cell phone contact is no longer in service. "The party you've connected to is unavailable. Permanently! He's off in the wild blue yonder being spacey. Thanks for flying Rainbow Three Ways Airlines."
Reluctantly erasing Chance's pix – in his multicolor Speedo trunks, with testicular uplift – from my iPhone, I halfheartedly dial 1-800-WHY-THNK, the I-94 billboard come-on. What the hell. Jilted again. What do I have to lose? So…
"Thanks for calling The Why Think Foundation, an ecumenical helpline for those too tired to think for themselves. Welcome to the club. There are millions like you across America. Millions who 24/7 are now happy, content to no longer have to deal with confusing, disappointing, trying, damned annoying life choices and agendas facing them.
"There's comfort in knowing that thinking for yourself is really the ultimately selfish act. Truth is that it's not important what you think. What's important is what the group thinks. What the country thinks. There's safety in numbers. If old thoughts work best, why think new ones? It's, duh, that simple."
Just when I was about to hang up on the recorded Why Think Foundation message, a live baritone voice soothed. "Greetings, brain-worn-out, simple-minded friend. Don't think. Just listen. This is what you MUST do to be carefree. Let us make ALL your decisions. We offer our clients – GOD knows there are many – plans that work. We ask only that you sign on for life or $100K, whichever runs out first.
"We have a convenient all-purpose political plan, a surefire, no-Hell, religious plan, an industrial/military complex exchange contract (with golden warmongering opportunities), and a no-think-ever-again rebater that automatically makes you superior to your neighbors who, unfortunately, think – incorrectly, arrogantly, unpatriotically – for themselves."
"Have you a non-thinking plan for jilted gays?"
"Do we ever, buddy. A no brainer. Get stuffed, er, stiffed."