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The Goat Of God

At one time in my life, I thought I would stay in New Orleans. I went to school at Tulane and then took a zombie job in a gas company's office in the CBD. I started romping a Cajun goddess with a head full of trouble. I made a spectacle of myself at Mardi Gras, punched out a midget with a switchblade on Magazine Street and threw dice on graves with various crazies from the four corners of the globe I met in dives. Eventually, the Big Easy became hard to love and so did I. If I stayed there any longer, I was sure to have gone rancid all the way.

Sick of seeing me spinning my wheels in the swamp, an uncle set me up with a DC lobbying firm where he was juiced in. "Son, here's the deal," Uncle Bill said as he reached for the olive in his martini. We were in the basement bar of the Hay-Adams Hotel. "Our family takes care of their black sheep. And I sincerely wish you every success. But only if you can keep stupidity in check."

"I understand."

He chuckled. "I want to believe that but I will reserve judgement. Now it don't matter to me what you got up to in New Orleans because I went on the same adventure. I know every dark alley and rabbit hole in that city. But this town has got its own special breed of grifter. When some congressman hands you the collection plate and starts talking about the lamb of God, he's setting you up to be the goat of God. You'll be eating a tire in prison and he'll be fingering a staffer at his new beach house."

My parole officer still laughs at this.

Story by:

Timothy Dugdale

2 July 2014