Welcome to the latest TAN, man. I've been having a bit of writer's block lately to go with recurring viruses and an unpleasantly hectic schedule, but inspiration strikes in the strangest places and the TAN is surely the strangest place of them all. With that said, I present something a little different for this TAN. After the rules, enjoy a little storytime, and forgive the fact that it's unedited and may contain the occasional tense error or whatnot.
They are as follows:
1) No politics, no personal attacks, no excessive swearing, no porn, no graphic violence/ gore. Period.
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Once upon a time there was a young boy named David. David was the youngest son of Yishai, a popular farmer and sheep breeder in the city of Bethlehem. Yishai had seven other sons, all of whom were fine young men in their own right and would go on to lead good, simple lives afforded to them by their father's distinction. David, however, was destined for something more. David was to be a mighty warrior, an eloquent poet, a noble husband eight times over and a father of twenty recognized children as well as an indeterminate number of offspring from his many ravishing concubines. David was to be one of the great kings in Jewish history.
Of course the David in this tale is not that David. He's alright in his own way, but it is unlikely that there will be songs written about our David. Where the David of old felled the mighty giant Goliath with a slingshot, our David is more likely to fling verbal pebbles at giants fans. The David of old is widely known across time and space for his beautifully lyrical psalms to the lord, and our current David is only known by a handful of misfits for his adequately readable comments on the internet. When the David of old collected an astounding two-hundred Philistine foreskins for his king he praised God for the strength to accomplish the deed, whereas our David has only seen one foreskin in his life, and he swears to god that he certainly didn't mean to click on that link. The comparison between the biblical David and our David is a pale effigy, and there is of course no shame in this. Not all Davids could live up to such an imposing namesake, and that reality is where our story begins.
Our lesser David had a son named Adir. Being a doting father, David did his best to pass on to his son all of the things that he knew to be true. Adir did not know much at first, but his neonatal instincts told him that this tall goofy cooing thing who shared his mother with him was a trustworthy sort, and so as Adir grew he followed, first cautiously tottering and then eagerly ambling, in his father's footsteps. The precocious infant became the studious child, and he progressively learned all that he should. First the boy discovered basketball on television and found himself rooting for the New York Knicks. Then the boy discovered that there was a game going on in the loud blue and orange park where his father would take him for hot dogs and cotton candy, and so he became a fan of the New York Mets. And finally, the boy managed to escape his mother's clutches one Sunday afternoon and he started to see the world with a tint of rich green. All was going according to plan.
In the boy's first ten years of sports viewership he experienced all the heartache and joys associated with rabid fandom. He groaned and cried when his teams lost, and whooped and cheered when his teams won. He wore his gear with pride and argued with friends of other local sports teams over whose franchise was better. When he played football on the playground he would pretend to be Geno Smith and when he was on defense he was Dee Milliner. It all seemed pretty clear to him, but there was one thing he could not understand. Finally, one Sunday while his mother was preoccupied with the two year old quintuplets and his father was sitting on the couch enjoying his five goddamn minutes of peace and quiet, Adir asked the question that had been niggling at his mind.
Adir shrugged as his father looked at him incredulously. Where had this idea come from, his father wondered? Had Adir been talking to that troublemaker from Gang Green Nation? The one who had been banned for life after posting a video of himself pooping in a coonskin hat? This just could not be happening.
"Son... where in the world did you get this idea? That the... the ravens... ugh. Cool? No! What the... where did you get that idea?????"
"Everybody knows it, dad. I mean, they are america's team. All those clutch Joe Flacco wins are iconic. But why do you hate them so much?"
David felt himself start to sweat profusely. He could explain himself to his son, but that was not the problem. The problem was that his son felt that way. David shrugged, mumbled an apology to no one in particular, then went upstairs to the master bedroom and pulled the Jets-themed covers he had fought so hard with his wife for up over his head. By the time his bewildered wife came upstairs to ask him why their son thought he'd done something wrong, David had sunk into a restless sleep.
In David's sleep, a hellish dream formed. He found himself flying straight ahead into the night, plunging forward into a pitch black sky. As David stared into the oncoming skies, sharp green star-bursts filled a wide-angled dreamscape all around him, and with the dissipation of each green burst a dark purple patch settled in its place. David wanted to stop, wanted to pull up and find soft green earth below, but the directionless void kept pulling him in, in, in... until it suddenly stopped and gravity violently jerked him downward. As David fell towards the expanse of purple below, he extended his arms out in front of him and screamed.
And then he was alive, but the purple was still there. David's eyes adjusted slowly, and he realized that it was a jersey. It was Adir's jersey. David's ex-wife and other children was grasping tightly to the fresh smelling purple cloth worn by Adir Dubois, the heralded number one overall draft pick for the Baltimore Ravens. David looked around. He was in a hotel room. The walls were a pale gray and the carpet a scuzzy green. On the television screen, Joe Flacco, Rex Ryan and Tony Gonzalez discussed Dubois' potential and gushed at how adorable his siblings looked. It was just such a shame that his father couldn't be there, but everybody knew that sad story. A man so driven by hate for the Baltimore Ravens that he'd chosen to divorce his son the day Baltimore clinched the number one seed in their lone losing season of the past decade. What kind of a jerk was that, asked Rex Ryan? He needs to get smacked, exclaimed Rex. And then Rex reached through the screen. David was too shocked to move, too shocked to react as Rex grabbed him, pulled him close to the screen, raised a giant hand over his head and screeched in a demonic voice... "LET'S GET SOME GODDAMN SMACKSSSSSSS"
Before the impact of the smack could be felt, the scene shifts again. David in his drab green apartment that looks just like the drab green hotel room. His son, now a pro bowl quarterback and super bowl champion for the Baltimore Ravens, is visiting for the first time. A reconciliation attempt. Adir is introducing David to a woman. It is his new wife. She converted to judaism for him, but she is twenty-three years his senior. Their torrid affair, which shattered both of their previous marriages, has been tabloid fodder for a year. David does not say it, but he is certain that Adir pursued the relationship to anger him. How else would he find himself courting cougar extraordinaire and living legend Taylor Swift? A young man like Adir should be pursuing a young woman like rap superstar Blue Ivy Carter or even a prominent entertainment television businesswoman like North West. Taylor Swift may be the most popular woman on earth, but surely he could do better? Still, David does not say this. David just listens as Taylor tells him about the album of Jewish folk songs she is planning to record. He listens, and he nods his head. He nods, and nods, and nods... and then his head falls off.
The funeral is held in a parlor with purple carpeting. David the ghost watches as David the body is wheeled in. First the body and then the head. His children are there and so is his ex-wife. His son is back in Baltimore with his own wife and they both send their best. The family decides that the most fitting tribute to David is for the scant few mourners to sit and watch a good movie. They select The Dark Knight Rises. The lights dim and the opening credits flash. David the ghost hears that gravelly Christian Bale voice and tries to run away. He tries but he finds that his ghostly form is tied to his corpse. He is tethered, and he cannot look away. He tears at his otherworldly tether but he cannot free himself. And the movie plays on. And on. And on. David the ghost wails, but nobody can hear him. So he wails on. There is nothing more he can do.
Then the wailing fades, and David begins to return to reality. David feels his tongue hanging at the corner of his mouth. Darkness is pulled back with blankets as he begins to re-acclimate himself to waking life. He thinks about his dream. Then he thinks about his son. He can't imagine a fate worse than that fantasy coming to pass. He thinks about how his son is a pretty scrawny Jewish kid and is unlikely to make it to the NFL. He thinks about how his son is probably not going to be attractive enough to hook Taylor Swift. They say he looks like his father, after all. And he thinks about how even if it does happen, his hatred for the Baltimore Ravens could never outweigh his love for his son. So maybe he'll try to pretend to not hate the Ravens so much, for his son's sake. If his son thinks they are cool, he is entitled to that opinion. Besides, if the day ever comes where the Ravens do draft Adir it wouldn't be all bad. They do give out huge contracts to quarterbacks, and there are worse things than a son who can afford to buy you a new houseboat.