I got a thing in my mailbox the other day telling me the second coming is drawing near. It was a small piece of white paper folded in two and was coloured green white orange and yellow. It was folded so that a drawing of the back of a Man on a horse was on the cover. The Man was wearing a golden pointed crown. The Man was holding a golden sword up in front of His face. He had pants with King of Kings and Lord of Lords written down the leg (I wear Adidas). The horse was white and had a white mane. The Man on the horse was wearing a cape like Skeletor. The cape was rippling. The Man was hovering in space looking down on the earth (with clouds above the atmosphere) brandishing a golden sword. He was somewhere between the earth and the moon’s orbit. The horse had its neck back and front left leg bent up at the knee. It looked like the horse was about to rear. The Man was looking down on planet Earth and you could tell by the way He was holding His sword that He was preparing to charge. Inside it told me the second coming of Jesus to the earth is called the RAPTURE.


The piece of paper told me that if I didn’t repent I would be damned. It told me that putrefying painful sores, seas of dead men’s blood, rivers filled with blood and the stench of dying aquatic life plaguing man and beast are coming. It told me the sun would scorch the flesh of blasphemous men (I am sunburned today) and then disappear into the blackness of full darkness as men gnaw their tongues (it’s been years since E’s) for pain. It told me the Euphrates River is going to dry up (is that in Sydney?) as great earthquakes pound the remnant of earth’s inhabitants. It went on to tell me that God will say it is done as his wrath is satisfied. This piece of paper told me that if I miss the RAPTURE that I would be a deluded non-believer and burn up in Hell for all eternity. I read it and thought wow. If you don’t believe like I believe you’re going to burn in Hell. Thanks a lot. Is that what its come to, scaring people into religion? Did anyone else get this in the mail or was it just me? Anyway, that’s all beside the point. I’ve already said sorry.


Everyone picks they’re own ideals. It’s a means to an end. It becomes a reason when people can’t see a point to life. I can hardly see a point to life but I can’t believe like they do. I sat in my wheelchair trying to imagine what sort of people are trying to recruit followers to a vengeful God. Do they look like you and I or do they have it written all over their face? They’re normally easy to spot. They hang around train stations smiling inanely. It’s come down to pamphlets in the letterbox trying to recruit. I had an encounter with a beautiful woman in Bondi one day. She looked like a princess from a Golden Book. She was smiling (too much for a stranger) at me as she approached. She stopped in front of my wheelchair to tell me that she was part of a congregation that ran a healing clinic at a church nearby. She told me that I should come along and that they would cure me (I already knew better, there is no cure for what I’ve got, but couldn’t help wondering if I went along and joined up would I be able to fuck her?). I asked her what religion she was? She said Christian. I asked what denomination? She said Christian again. Yeah, but what denomination are you, I asked again? She looked at me like I’d just caught her kissing her good-looking cousin (you know guilty yet pleased) as she told me; I guess you could call it evangelical (I knew I wouldn’t be able to fuck her). For those of you who don’t know what that means, that means she goes to a church where people collapse. You’ve probably seen them before on television with their eyes closed and their arms waving above their heads in the air trying to catch God. You’ve probably seen on TV a preacher touching someone on the forehead and then the person collapsing. The person collapsing from the supposed power of God the preacher carries with them. I told someone that I was thinking of going along. Really, they asked? Yeah I said; it would make great fodder for a short story. They asked if I would be taking the piss out of the congregation. Of course, I said. The person frowned and told me that it would anger God if I did that. I haven’t gone along yet so I still don’t yet know how He’ll feel about it.


I had a bad day yesterday. It got me thinking about God. I had a day where I questioned the reason for my existence. I woke up feeling that way. I felt like I didn’t belong. I prepared then went through my morning bowel routine. It told me I wasn’t normal. I lay in bed and injected three enemas via a plastic syringe and length of catheter into my rectum. I lay in bed awhile then transferred over a blue sheet on to my wheel commode-chair and pushed it into the bathroom. I pushed the chair over the toilet, removed the blue sheet from under my bum, and waited to hear a plop. I sat for five minutes wishing that I were allowed to smoke on the toilet (oh Heaven, anyone remember that?) until I heard two plops. I put on a glove and stuck one finger in my bum to pull any stragglers out. I was clean inside so I took the glove off, chucked it in the bin and pushed the commode chair next to the shower. I transferred on to the shower commode char. I reached up and got the showerhead off the wall and turned the water on. I asked Him as I sat on my chair washing the tears that had started to drop down my face. I turned the water on to my chest and said give me a sign. I reached down to get a squeeze of soap. Just give me a sign that there’s a point to all this. I told Him that I understood why He hadn’t given me a sexy neighbour to spy on through my bedroom window but couldn’t understand why I was still alive. I told Him, just give me one sign. I need one sign. I turned the hot water up. It burned me well. I felt my stomach cramp. It suddenly smelled bad in the shower. I looked down to find I’d shit all over the floor. The shit was dark brown, almost black (too much seasoned seaweed) and was made up of three long skinny turds. I hadn’t even felt it. I asked Him to show me a sign (I meant give me a woman you Bastard) and He showed me by making me shit on the floor. I wanted Him to show me but that’s not what I wanted to see. I had to pick the wet turds of the shower floor. As I bent down to start picking them up another plopped out.


That’s how my day started. I washed myself then transferred out the shower. I put on a glove reached down and picked the poohs off the bottom of the shower. I flushed them down the loo. I wheeled back to the shower and sprayed it with disinfectant. I dried my face armpits balls and bum got dressed and pushed my way to Icebergs. It’s straight down Bondi rd to get there (sounds like fun aye? downhill in a wheelchair, it’s no fun pushing back up the hill in your wheelchair). I’ve worn holes in four pairs of gloves from the friction of hanging on to the wheels getting there. I love that place. It’s beautiful and the people there are nice to me. I did some standing and then swum two laps in the pool. It was on my way back from the gym I met her. She was with a friend and they both smiled at me. She introduced herself (I promptly forgot her name) and told me that she always saw me pushing myself ‘round and that I was an inspiration. I said, don’t say that. I didn’t tell her why. An inspiration? Fuck! Didn’t she know? I stared into her eyes. She really didn’t know. Everything I do is based on necessity. She told me that she always saw me pushing my wheelchair up the hill. An inspiration? Fuck it. I don’t want a woman to be impressed by my actions. I want a woman to want me.


Just last week it happened again. There was another woman who I’d met at the Icebergs before. I saw at the start of the week in the middle of the morning halfway down Bondi rd. She stopped and wanted to talk. I didn’t want to talk. I wanted to go to the gym. She had dirty uncombed hair and came at me from a deep and low tone about spirituality. She went on and on about the forces. She told me I was an inspiration several times in the conversation. I wanted to get to the gym so eventually put my hand out to shake and go when she told me she was sincere and had meant everything she’d just told me. She put her hand out. I shook it. I looked at her hands and saw dirt under her fingernails. Her voice changed as she said that it wasn’t the booze talking. I smiled and asked why? Did she have a few drinks the night before? No, she said, I’ve had a few drinks this morning. The smile dropped from my face. All the things she’d said were tarnished knowing she drank by herself in the morning. As I pushed my wheelchair away from her I understood and acknowledged that we are all broken. It’s just that you can see how I’m broken. I wanted Him to show me but that’s not what I wanted to see.


I met a twit as I approached Knotts Ave. He stopped walking and stood in front of my wheelchair to block my way and yelled at me, I WISH I HAD ONE OF THOSE! One of WHAT, I asked? A WHEELCHAIR, he yelled back at me. The look on his face said he was impressed. I don’t think I frowned but I remember my face dropping thinking what an idiot… he wished he had a wheelchair. He obviously had no idea of the ramifications of most wheelchair users. Now know that I’m not talking about old dears being pushed by their grandchildren. I’m talking about damage to the spinal cord. I’m talking about loss of bodily functions. He’s as bad as the twit who said he was jealous of me not having a job. I’ve pretty much had some sort of a job since I was eleven years old and I hate the fact that I’m not healthy enough to work. Twit obviously hadn’t thought properly about not having a job. No money no honey. I remember reading something where a man said that, no woman actively sought out a dishwasher. What chance do you think a man in a wheelchair without a job has?


Most people will go their entire lives without ever seeing a psychologist. A large percentage of those people could do with seeing a psychologist. I woke in hospital to have lost the use of my legs and have a balding …fat man (I’m a customer come on play nice) with a clipboard asking me questions. I may be dumb but I’m not an idiot. There was never a good question asked. Even with a brain injury I could see he painted by numbers. The GOLIATH has made me see two more within the last week. One was a garden-variety psychologist and one clinical. My life was made harder for me and it hasn’t stopped. I woke out of my coma to find them slowly pulling the rug out from under me. I’ve got a good DAVID fighting for me but all he’s got is a big bag of stones (he’s a good shot though). I sit (literally) and wait while the Avocado tries to smear some guacamole on GOLIATH’S sandal (doesn’t God wear sandals too? no wait, that’s Jesus… God probably wears high heels or gumboots). The GOLIATH had arranged the appointments. Seeing the clinical shrink made me feel dumb. She first read out a list of twenty-five words. She’d told me to remember as many words as I could from the list and repeat them to her. She spoke in a monotone (I would give you some examples but I’ve forgotten). I remember initially remembering the first four words. My ears were hearing the sequence she was saying but my mind was trying to remember the first four words (what where they again?). She repeated the same test three times. I got progressively worse before she told me she would read out words and I would have to tell her if they were on the list. I couldn’t remember. I had even forgotten the first four. The whole experience made me feel dumber. Now I know I wanted Him to show me but that’s not what I wanted to see.


Tomorrow’s got to be a better day. It can’t be much worse than yesterday. I keep getting up hoping my view’s going to improve. It has to… it better.  People keep telling me that there’s a reason I’m still alive. I’m not so sure about that. To have then to have not is something else. It’s character building if nothing. Apparently He only helps those who help themselves. Well I have helped myself but now I need a little help (I need somebody, Help, not just anybody).


Some day He’s going to show me what I want to see.












PS. I hope I haven’t offended Him by writing this and I don’t want people to think I’m seeking pity or am angry.  I don’t think I have offended Him. I’ve been smiling writing this. He’s probably got a good sense of humour. He must have. After all He sent his Boy down to us and we hammered him to two pieces of wood with three nails







Andrew Stuart Buchanan


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