I did it!
I found the reincarnation of George Washington!
It wasn’t easy. I had to leave my central air, overstuffed couch, 60 inch screen, and French onion potato chips for a grueling 3 hour flight in coach class. Then I had to sit in the desert with 20 other people while I swallowed Ayahuasca…
…and smoked a lot of weed so that when the snake appeared to answer my question I wouldn’t freak out.
Did you know that a snake can smile? Not a pretty sight, let me tell you. But it helped to have unicorns hopping around in back of him singing, “My Way” while rainbows glittered in my eyes.
Anyway, that’s enough background information. For now.
Ends up, that old George now sits at the right hand of the Dalai Lama. Sort of. I read in the National Rag that it would be much too painful for the Buddhist icon to form that level of attachment to another living spirit again.
“I’ll have to translate for you,” The snake says, his voice echoing in my brain like a jack-hammer at point-blank range. “You don’t speak cat.”
I gulped loudly. “George…is a…cat? What heinous crime did he commit that sentenced him to cathood?”
The stately feline hovered close to the Dahlia or Llama or whatever, but not too close. I’ll just call it ‘an acceptable distance.’
“Gggg…George?” I stuttered.
“No. It’s not a punishment. I chose this blessing.”
“The Dalai Lama asks that both of you think softly,” the snake said. “He’s meditating.”
“Why did you choose to live in this ice laden hell hole?” I whispered.
“It beats fighting ice flows in the Potomac, and I like the simple routine of meditating before dawn, pooping in the garden, and relaxing under the stars.”
“Sounds boring,” I said, yawning.
He curled up into a ball of contentment, staring at me with that incredulous cat look.
“That delicious looking snake says you want to ask me something. What is your question?”
“Have you been anyone else during the last 216 years?”
“I thought I could do some good during the war of 1812, but I was 9 at the time and diphtheria got to me before I could join the battle. Then I was a woman in Georgia during the civil war. Let me tell you, it’s not easy being a plantation owners daughter when you’ve commanded an entire army and served as president of the United States. I have great respect for the half of our world that men are constantly treating like commodities. After I died trying to give birth at the age of 16, I floated in oneness for a while.”
“I want to be a rock star when I’m reincarnated,” I said with a smile.
“Your second husband told you that you’d better watch out what you wish for, you might get it.”
“I don’t remember much, but I do remember he used to say that a lot. I’m still trying to understand what it means.”
“I’m not surprised,” George sighed. “You’re not the first, nor will you be the last to seek me out. I’d hoped that being a cat would discourage people but nooooo…you idiots continue to ask the same d@mned question over and over and over again.”
“I wanted to know what you thought of Memorial Day and the Fourth of July?”
“That’s 2 questions but, okay. I’ll bite. Most people ask what I think about the United States as it is in 2016.”
“What did you tell them?”
“I gave you a chance, you blew it, and I’m over it. So go have your picnics, terrorize your pets with fireworks and leave me in peace, man.”
“Tell me, were you a Hippie in the 1960’s?”
“Yeah, man. That lasted until I died of AIDs in 1977. I wasn’t a Hippie for the politics.”
“Let me get this straight. The father of our country would rather be a womanizing Hippie or a meditating cat than fight for his country again?”
George stretched out, yawned, and sniffed the crisp, clean air. “You people are addicted to amassing things and you crave entertainment.”
In the defense of our country I said, “That’s the American way.”
“It didn’t used to be. Think of the present US population as an alcoholic lying on a bench guzzling cheap wine. He says he wants to clean himself up and start a new life. A man with compassion and integrity fights for his right to individual treatment and nearly dies trying to help him acclimate to the new life he said he wanted. A year later, that same alcoholic is on a bench guzzling cheap wine and complaining that no one wants to help him start a new life. Why would any sane entity try to help him again?”
“So then, what do you think about Memorial Day and Independence Day?”
“I think I smell a rat. It’s time to get back to my day job.”
“It’s not my responsibility to decide how you’re supposed to think! It’s your job to stop “training” children and start educating them in the art of critical thinking.”
“Your time is up,” the snake told me.
I took in a deep breath, looked at the snake and asked, “Is this a joke?”
“No,” He said solemnly. “It’s a warning.”
The snake faded away and I giggled at the unicorns dancing on bright green valleys under blue skies…until I fell off my noble white steed, the rainbows faded and my mind returned to the desert.
I scratched the sand out of my derriere, oblivious to the people laughing as I did it. But I had more important things to think about than humanity’s shallowness.
A man who could’ve been Native American or South American, or something like that, asked, “Was your question answered?”
I smiled up at him and said, “I was told to get a cat and treat him as if he were George Washington.”