Have you ever wondered about the background of panhandlers? I have. That’s why I recently invited a bearded hobo to join me for lunch at my favorite hamburger joint. The unlikely name of the homeless wanderer is Juarez Smythe-Jones. Turns out Smythe-Jones has a degree in Behavioral Science from Western New Mexico University and participated in the infamous Hamburger Hill battle during the Viet Nam conflict.
After an initial exchange of pleasantries and the spilling of ketchup all over the table, Mr. Smythe-Jones got on a roll while telling the story of his life. The following is his unedited monologue.
“Everything is going to be all right now. I have remembered who I am – Khris T, the illegitimate Son of the Son of God.
It was all revealed to me in a dream while I napped on a cot at the homeless shelter while the Masters golf tournament was selling Mercedes-Benzes on the television. In February of 1944, during a Mardi Gras celebration in Marfa, Texas, Jesus (or “Daddy All Mighty” as I like to call him) appeared before a group of financially strapped students from Sul Ross College. The poor students wanted to party, but had no money for adult beverages. Blessed Jesus did what he does best – turned water into wine. Of course in that desert region of West Texas, the real trick was finding water.
Daddy All Mighty enjoyed the company of these impoverished students, so he decided to get his groove on. He mysteriously (that’s the way he rolls) transported the Arte Shaw band to the side of the road where folks stop to view the Marfa Lights (the source of which even He could not explain.)
The party went the way parties often go. Partiers did what partiers often do. Daddy drank wine the way Kings of Kings often do. You know the expression ‘drunk as a Lord?’ Hormones surged the way hormones often do. Inhibitions vanished the way inhibitions often do. Women got more beautiful the way women often do. Daddy got seduced the way daddies often do. OK, perhaps he was partially responsible for the seducing. He among you that has never been stoned, let him cast the first aspersion. All I know for sure is Lucifer was jealous as Hell!
To make a short story even shorter, amidst the music, the frolicking, the consuming of the sacred grape juice and the dancing of the magical lights – Yours Truly was conceived.
The next morning, during one of the most profound hangovers under Heaven, J.C. received a sign from The Big Boss. My miraculous birth would be downplayed for the sake of propriety within the church. The Infinite did not want a repeat of that whole Virgin Mary fiasco that, although an effective marketing tool for both the church and Mary’s dancing career, got completely out of hand. I appreciated the fact my mother was spared that notoriety. And my dad never had to be known as “God’s Cuckold.” Is Joseph not the most pathetic creature in history?
This mass amnesia was achieved nine months after my birth when the entire Cosmos was forced off kilter by the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. God’s plan? Who knows? It was suspiciously convenient.
You can imagine the shock when I first recalled my true identity. But now that I remember, I am ready to assume my rightful place in what we, with an absence of irony, refer to as Western Civilization. I am prepared to be worshipped. Render unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s. Render unto Juarez Smythe-Jones all your spare change.”
James BigBoy Medlin © 2017
James BigBoy Medlin was the sports writer for the original Austin Sun. His column was called "Why Not?"
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