Mirrored Life

The Gonzo Journals

March 27th, 2023


I can’t seem to snap out of it this morning.

Yes, yes. The coffee is well in hand and hotter than the fires of Hell, or so I’ve come to imagine due to decades of forced Christian dogma. I prefer to imagine Hell as less of a fiery chasm and more of a, well…

The United States of American from 2015 to Present day. I’m a little disappointed that Satan turned out to be a fake rich bastard reality tv failure with a spray on tan and annoying, forced New York accent but, according to the Rolling Stones: you can’t always get what you want. All those years of listening to Ozzy for nothing. I feel robbed.

I had the pleasure of sitting in the cab of an 1897 Porter narrow gauge steam locomotive this weekend and, let me tell you, she was a beast! It was a little intimidating at first since she was so much smaller than the 1901 I was used to. There’s no way you can be a fireman in this locomotive and be afraid of fire. It’s basically trying to lick you the entire time. The fact it was one hundred degrees inside the cab of the train was inconsequential, and a reminder of what’s to come during the Texas summer.

Every chug of the pistons would suck the fire right out the box and you had to be quick to recover. She also builds steam like a hive of angry bees, causing the safety valve to pop off even when climbing hills. There’s no lazy firing while inside the “Charles Jefferson Patton”. Charlie, as I prefer to call her, will keep you on your toes. A steam locomotive is truly nothing more than a giant hand grenade on wheels. If you were within a half mile of me yesterday and didn’t die a horrible, scalding death…you’re welcome. I try to be good at what I do.

Today, I begin writing the last two chapters of the “Guns Immortal” video game and, as awesome as this opportunity is, I would much rather be sitting in Charlie’s left seat, thundering down the tracks, blasting through tunnels, and waving at awestruck children who view me and my fellow railroaders as gods of times gone by. There’s nothing like the howl of a steam whistle to wreck the quiet morning. All the dreaming I did as a child pales in comparison to reality.

I’m juggling three loves at this point in life. My wife will always come first, and she deserves nothing less. My writing finally doesn’t feel forced, and it flows from my fingers seamlessly twice a day in my morning and afternoon sessions. Finally, I’m doing what I consider to be a damn good impression of a railroad man from one hundred and twenty six years ago.

If I concentrate enough, I can almost smell the intoxicating fuel oil as it feeds the controlled, captive explosion taking place at my feet. Closing my eyes, a light mist of warm droplets slaps my forehead as the steam from the angelic whistle transforms to water once more. The squealing wheels grind the tracks of every curve in a way which can only be compared to the ear-piercing torture of a Taylor Swift album. I jest. She’s truly beautiful and talented – in the eyes of some – but there’s definitely something going on there otherwise everyone in Hollywood wouldn’t lick her and kick her. Maybe she doesn’t wipe thoroughly. Maybe she’s just crazy. That sort of thing is known to happen from time to time, especially if she had a mother who dropped the ball during her raising. Perhaps she should take the Freudian approach to her subconscious song writing psyche?

Some live life from points ‘a’ to ‘b’ with no variation between the cradle and the grave. I decided at a young age that this was no way to ‘live’. Though some would claim my antics were nothing more than a narcissistic plea for attention, I was preparing for what came next. I was never destined to fill a funeral slide show with photos of me sitting at a table drinking coffee or napping in a recliner day in and day out. No, I plan on having the most interesting headstone in my hometown of Greenville, Texas. I want prom night babies to be conceived atop my grave and impromptu teenage Saturday night drunk sessions to commence involving legends of my lunacy. I want to be an inspiration to those who feel there’s no way out and nowhere to go.

Hunter S. Thompson always said, “buy the ticket, take the ride”, but I feel this quote was of unusually limited sight for a man of his stature.

C. Derick Miller says, “buy the ride and charge admission to the shit bags who will eventually come to their senses…but never forget how they doubted the design. Let them climb to the top of your hill, hit the brakes, and kick them off.”

The look on their faces as they’re forced to walk the wobbly path back down to the ground will be worth the trouble of setting them up in the first place. Make sure you take photos.

The word ‘live’ when viewed in the mirror reads as ‘evil’. I think Ozzy taught me that, too.

(insert sinister laugh here)



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