This is an exclusive extract from JAD’s new book, Life in the Late Creepzoid, which will be available soon.
“Creepy” (adjective): Causing an unpleasant feeling of fear or unease
“Zoid” (noun): A shape without definite properties
“Creepzoid” (adjective, noun, verb): A state of being that exists without definite properties in an environment of unpleasantness, fear and unease
Jack woke to the news. It boomed out the badness of the world. He crumbled under the early morning shock and thought that he should step forward and act against the atrocities. He felt a failure because he could not act upon what he saw in the world. He knew his fixation was a neurotic compensation to deflect his suicidal tendencies that repeatedly told him that the pills were in the drawer.
Jack lived in a world of continually diminishing options. It could be worse he thought as he opened the bottle of morning meds. He could be living in China where they had headsets on the school children that monitored their brain waves for mental responses as they absorbed the bullshit they were being taught. Four thousand years of fascism was a long time.
He let his mind wander a bit and considered Apple, Amazon and Google would soon be coming out with similar products to monitor children’s brain waves with an app to make sure they were not emotionally stressed. The little fuckers could stress everyone around them but God forbid they be inconvenienced in any way, or triggered. OMG.
After that it was a simple step to feeling the need to monitor your own brain waves. They could add that function to the ugly black-faced watches everyone was wearing. He must tame the beast. He quickly washed down the pills.
The overpriced coffee machine spat out organic Italian Espresso a friend of his brought in from his frequent trips to Italy. Jack had long since abandoned Starfucks. He had grudging admiration for Starfucks though. Can you imagine building an empire on badly burnt coffee? Now that was something. Not everyone can aspire to that level in one lifetime. P.T. Barnum had put it well when he said, “you never lose money overestimating the ignorance of the American public.”
It really wasn’t the coffee that kept him away; it was the people. He could not bear being in the presence of that many losers all in one place at one time, all sitting around sipping magical corporate brutality while pretending to have lives that only existed on their computers and phones. He had to be honest and honor the situation,, it was on his phone that he had met his new girlfriend.
At that time he was living in Manhattan and was roaming on Tinder. She was in from California and was looking for a hook-up, and what a hook-up it had been. She gave him the best blowjob he had ever had and he fell immediately in love. She was the only thing in his life that was not dead. Her name was Bernadette. Can you imagine calling your daughter Bernadette?
His affection for Bernadette had pried him from the claws of the east coast and shortly thereafter he found himself in Palo Alto working for a Fintech startup that she was involved in. He was originally from southern California so he felt he was a bit on the trailer trash side of the tracks in Palo Alto but that is where Bernadette called home so that is where he went. She was originally from south Florida and had more brains than he’d ever seen in one place. They lived separately; they both preferred it that way.
Soon after his arrival in Palo Alto he went down to the car dealership and leased a Porsche Cayenne. He loved how the California sun beamed down on him through its transparent roof. He felt like settling down a bit so he dropped by the animal shelter and adopted a dog saving it from most certain death and then headed over to Bernadette’s. On the way he was sideswiped by a soccer mom in a huge SUV who had been talking on her phone and not seen him. Of course she was blonde and had obviously just come from her botox treatment. They got desperate as they aged out here. They both pulled over and worked it out, after all they were not savages; they both knew the deal. They agreed he would not mention the phone when the cops came and her insurance would pay for it all so who cared?
When the cops left he went back to his car. In haste to get his papers he had left the passenger door open and the new dog had fled. Jack was only slightly upset by this. He applauded the dog for his common sense and hoped that he would not end up eating scraps from dumpsters but would be found by some sweet young girl who would take him home and fawn over him. Whatever happened it was better for the dog than being dead. The Beast had raised its head again; he took a deep breath and pushed it down. He brought his focus to Bernadette stark naked doing her pole dance workout. It was her way of dealing with it all. His visualization worked.
He arrived at Bernadette’s and she buzzed him in. Unfortunately he was too late to watch her routine but she had other rewards for him. She opened the door to him, naked, gleaming with sweat and holding a set of handcuffs. She invited him in and undressed him. She handcuffed him to the pole, hands over his head.
His knees went weak and he slid down the pole to the floor, an effect she had anticipated. She mounted him and they made love endlessly. After, when their breath had calmed, she un-cuffed him and they curled up together on the carpet at the base of the pole. He had never been so grateful for the presence of anyone in his entire life. His Beast slept.
Jack was originally from L.A. He was a product of Beverly Hills High and Harvard Business School. He was of silver spoon lineage and had used its leverage to the fullest. He was an orphan. His parents had been killed in car accident when he was young leaving him more than enough to get through to the end of grad school. He had been taught self -hatred by his now dead grandparents. He was completely alone in the world and was a prime candidate for the trajectory he had chosen. He was a perfect addition to the startup he called Skank Finetech.
He had been lucky at SF and had settled in quickly, being an ardent participant in the eighty-plus hour week. It kept the Beast at bay. He immediately found a best male friend there, an east coast escapee from Brooklyn; a nice Jewish boy Saul, named after his grandfather. Saul was a mathematical genius immersed in macro systems design. He had also had been taught self-hatred at the proper moment. They fell immediately into a Bromance. The first contract they made with one another is that they would never go fishing. It was all bro bliss from there on.
Bernadette was very happy about the Bromance as it freed her from having to be attentive to Jack when she wanted to pursue other interests. She had girlfriends she liked to spend time with and the Bromance served her as well. Jack had no problem with her side appetites and as most men, was turned on by them.
They already knew they would marry and spend the rest of their lives together so it was best to get it all worked out now. Bernadette was not as open to stray appetites that Jack might have as he was to hers. Early on she stated that he could only have another woman if she chose the woman and that she could join in if she wanted. He was in complete agreement. Your mate chooses your one-night stand for you thereby protecting you from crazy women and on top of it she has a bunch of hot girlfriends. Where do I sign? They made their agreement and as a ritual to seal their commitment to one another they simultaneously deleted their Tinder accounts.