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Wednesday, June 7, 2017

maybe not

Maybe not


      Maybe today I won’t look for center mass on the guy in the checkout aisle in front of me. Maybe today I won’t stealthily check under my car for bombs before getting into it in the parking lot. Maybe today I won’t reach for my rifle every time a woman holding a package walks by me. Maybe today I won’t seek out all the high ground as I pick up my daughter from day care. Maybe today I won’t smell human excrement and immediately look around for the upcoming ambush. Maybe today I won’t plan my escape route in case of a grenade while using a public bathroom. Maybe today I won’t have a flashback because the neighbors dog is barking and it’s night. Maybe today I won’t hit the breaks at the last possible second just for the adrenaline rush of a near accident on the freeway. Maybe today I won’t count all my rounds and clean them, and count them, and clean them. Maybe today I won’t take the rope out from behind the bench and swing it over the garage rail. Maybe today I won’t load the gun and chamber a round and put it under my head. Maybe today I won’t put all the pills in my mouth but not swallow them. Maybe today I won’t climb on the house and set off mines in the trees as the neighbors come home. Maybe today I won’t take out those snipers that look like kids in a tree house two houses down. Maybe today I won’t slit the throat of this enemy who dressed up as my wife and is trying to get close to me. Maybe today I won’t. Maybe.




only

       I only killed bad guys. That's what Ii tell my five year old when he asks if I ever killed anybody in the war. What else can I tell him? He can't wrap his mind around the complexities of one nation fighting another over land or politics or whatever countries fight over. How can I explain I shot people I had never met, with whom I had no personal quarrel, with whom I could have sat down and had a beer with, and talked about kids and wives and growing up and just, regular stuff. But I didn't. I shot him. I was faster than him and so he's dead and I'm alive until God decides its my time. Is that God's plan? To make me take the life of one of his children just to hold it over my head until he decides it's my turn? How do you break that down between letters and numbers over breakfast? How do I tell him when he wets his pants at school we have more in common than he realizes, as the first time I was shot at my reaction was the same? How do I tell him to love everyone and accept their differences, unless they're trying to kill you, in which case you have to kill them first? I tell him they are the bad guys, they are the ones who don't get to go on with their lives, they are the ones who will have no stories to tell their children and grandchildren. They are the ones who will be left in the street for the feral dogs to feed on, for the flies to lay maggots on, to have their pockets rifled through like so much laundry piled on the floor. That's what I tell him, that they were the bad guys, and they had to die. I don't tell him about the cold sweats I have when I wake up from a bad dream, why I have to go in my room and listen to music to drown out fireworks every year. I don't tell him about the last moments of life I witnessed for so many people that will haunt me until my dying day. No, I tell him I only killed bad guys, and he goes on about his day, just as it should be.

have I what?

Have I what?

Have I ever killed anybody?

       What kind of dumbass question is that to ask? I serve my country, I risk my life so you can post stupid shit on Facebook about how much you hate this country, I watch friends and strangers die in places I still can’t pronounce, I get shot at and shoot back and watch children with suspicious eyes and fell the fear and adrenaline rush of combat for well over a year and you ask me have I ever killed anyone? I put up with heat, cold, blisters, living in filth, smelling like rotting shit, not removing my helmet for a month straight, watching flies devour what used to be a human, being removed from everyone and everything I’ve ever known in my life, cleaning dried blood off a vehicle, all so you can have a faster internet connection at home, and the only fucking question you have for me is about killing people? Why aren’t you asking about my friends who didn’t make it back? Why don’t you find out where they’re buried so you can pay your respects? Why don’t you ask what it was like to see on the news the same people trying to kill me were now being paid by our government to “keep the peace”? Ask me about how scared I was to land in a country where everyone wanted me dead, or how guilty I feel every time I start to enjoy myself since I’ve been back. Ask me why even though the liquor only makes my self loathing worse, I still drink to the point of passing out every night just to sleep. Ask me those types of questions you stupid fuck. Ask me why I’d go back there in a heartbeat, no hesitation. Ask me why nothing else in this world can or will compare to my experiences there, and how I can relate to another veteran more deeply than my wife. Ask me how you can show you appreciate my efforts there, and honor those still fighting.

But, don’t ask me such a dumb question,
you wouldn’t understand the answer anyway.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

The next step

Dear all three of you who have looked at this blog, this is the swan song. The next logical step in my creative evolution is uopn us. I will be taking down this blog in favor of an actual website that contains both the funny and serious, in order to further my machinations. I apreciate the views, and the comments, anynomous or not, and hope you will continue to support me in the future.




www.whoismattjanak.com



This is what I have been striving towards without even knowing it all these years. This website is my baby, I created it, made it, whatever you want to say. And, as with all babies, it's not perfect, but it is to me. I again thank you for considering even the thought of any of my ideas.




Thank you again,

Matt

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Dramatic

      I just laugh to myself when people ask how accurate the tv shows are about what I do. There's no clean cut motive, there's no suspect we figure out after a day or so. And definitely no nice, clean little crime scenes that we can walk around and pick stuff up in. I mean, blood is like, sand at the beach, it has a way of getting into EVERYTHING. Die in the kitchen? Blood in the toaster. Killed in the living room? Better look under the coffee table. And the bathroom? Shit. Better take off the fan blades from the exhaust fan, they're bloody too. It's not neat, little bullet holes with a small pool of blood under them, it's a goddamn blood grenade exploding all over the place. And the best part they leave out of the tv shows and movies? The family. Yes, the loving, caring, "my world just ended and now I have blood spatter on my soul" family. Ever try to hold back a woman who finds her husband dead in the bathroom from a suicide? I don't care what society thinks, a woman who is emotional like that can overtake any linebacker in the NFL. And children, sheesh, don't even get me started on them. Both the dead and the live ones. A three year old holding on to his mothers bloody hair so tight we have to cut it off her head to take him away. Bet you won't see that on CSI. And trying to take a dead child out of a grieving mothers arms is worse than taking a starving dogs bone away, at least the dog will only try to bite you. But no, overall the accuracy of the shows and movies you see isn't real. You see the actors mill around acting like they see it everyday and it bothers them but not really, and a few episodes they act all crazy and break down. But in the end they move on and keep fighting the good fight. The truth is we only look as much as we have to, like we're peering into the sun and can only handle a brief moment here and there. We don't obsess over cases and poor over photos looking for something we missed. We see what we need, we gather the evidence we think is important, and we move on. Because we know the longer we stay, the more we look, the more we see and expose ourselves to, the less souls we have to give, the less we are as humans ourselves, and the less we have to give to the job.

Bah, this is all bullshit, you don't care about any of that, as you're just buying time till my ex wife gets here to try and talk me "down". Fuck it.


Just make sure It's a closed cask

Sunday, May 27, 2012

The beginning

Okay, so this is the beginning of a story. It's a dream I had last night, and it has no ending or middle or whatever. I was actually one of the three men I describe in the story, but I leave that part out.  I feels like the beginning of a novel or book or political thriller or some shit, but since I've never tried to write that much before, it may never get done or go any further than what you read here. I apologize in advance if that angers you at it's incompleteness, but here goes.



The three men wearing military uniforms walked silently into the lobby of the large office building. Anyone who knows about such things would be able to recognize the uniforms as being out of date, from earlier in the decade, but no one made any such observations audible. The men looked stern and unwavering, the type of look that screams "don't even ask what we're doing here" even though the nearest military base was 200 miles away. The men made their next appearance on the 30th floor of the office building, walking from the elevator down the hall as if they had done so for years and without hesitation. They arrived at the desk of a petite young woman with red hair and business suit, not quite a receptionist but not quite a supervisor either. She looked up at the men surrounding her desk and was immediately crestfallen at the sight of them. She knew what they were here for. They didn't have to say a word as she slowly walked from around her desk and down the hallway to a storage room, her head down in sorrow and shame at the tears starting to show. The men remained at her desk while she was gone, not moving, not looking around, not even making eye contact with each other. She returned with a plain brown packing envelope, it's bulge obvious, and handed it to the older of the three men, without looking up to see his expressionless face. He opened the package, glanced inside, and walked out with a purpose as the other two men followed without hesitation, none of the three having said a word to the young woman, now sobbing with her head in her hands at her desk. The men walked out of the building with the same          
earnestness, and didn't stop until the alley not far from the entrance to the building, yet out of sight from general passers by. The oldest man opened the package and distributed it's contents to the other two, now animated at the sight of what they were being handed. As they looked through the slips of colored paper and polaroids, the younger looking of the three spoke up, "Why didn't he just spend his share and be done with it?" The older man responded, "I don't know, but we're going to find out."       

Sunday, May 15, 2011

get out

Maybe by putting these thoughts down they will get out of my head finally.

In no particular order:

The las ttime I saw my mother she was laying in a bed with tubes up her nose. She looked up at me and looked back down. Never to lay eyes on me again. The next time I saw her it was laying in a coffin, knowing her hair was a wig and her eyes were sewn shut from previous conversations we had. She had too much blush on and _____ asked if they could wipe it off a little. The guy did, much like you would wipe off a previously unnoticed smudge from a  mirror. ______ then asked if her hands could be clasped together, so the man did as _____ asked, and arranged her fucking hands like she was some goddamn doll that had to be positioned a certain way to look pretty. She was wearing a blue dress, my favorite color, even though her favorite color was red. I had to pick out the dress for some reason. A real fun time for a fourteen year old. "Oh hey, we know your mother's dead and you are going home to live out the nightmare you've dreaded more than any perceived monster most children are scared of, but go ahead and pick out a death dress for your mother laying downstairs." I remember sitting outside and talking with _____ for most of the wake. Mainly because of that damn depressing music they kept playing in the funeral home. That combined with the low lighting and the realization of the next day was just too much for a fourteen year old mind I suppose. ______ just fell to pieces at the burial, crying on anyone's shoulder he could find. I got a lot of hugs myself. I remember at the hospital he asked us all to leave the room and we could hear him balling like a baby about how he didn't want to lose his mother. It's been 17 years and we still can't talk about it. I could tell a complete stranger more details about that time then I could ______ or _______. The hardest part for me wasn't until the next day, saturday, when I woke up and _____ and her friend were cleaning the house. It was just, like, what the fuck do I do now? How do I act, where do I go, how do I feel? I remember doing the dishes and Dad yelled at me about something and I just started crying. Not because he yelled at me, just because of the fact that there was no one else. Just me and him. My worst nightmare growing up wasn't of the boogeyman or Jason or Freddy Kruger, it was Mom and Dad getting divorced and having to live with Dad. I always told my mother that, and she always said the same thing, "it's up to the judge". Then one day, boom. I get a call from my aunt ______, and my mothers dead. Ironically the Ken Burns documentary baseball was playing and it was the scene where a famous player had died. Everything just stopped. Like when you're at a party and having a good time and someone turns off the music and the lights come up and you are told to leave. Just, over. That quick. And it's never the same. You may go to other parties and have a good time, but, that first one is gone, forever. In one instant my toys were no longer entertaining to me, what made me laugh just an instant before no longer did. The bubble was burst. The innocence lost for good, never to return. I think that is what they talk about when people have been through  a war and they they lost their innocence. That way of looking at the world through a child's eyes. I guess for most people it dies slowly, a natural death. But for some of us it's a shock, a sudden smack to the face. There was a time I wished I believed in God and the Devil, because I would have sold my soul to relive that time in my life, from 0 to 14. I would listen to certain music and watch certain shows and movies and look up commercials on you tube and even go buy toys to play with all in an attempt to recapture that feeling of being like I was back then, before everything changed. I was so desperate to relive that time I would cry myself to sleep at night willing to give anything just to have one more second of how I felt back then. Even as I write this now I have had to stop four or five times to regain my composure. I am the only one who saw my mother with no wig on, who heard her throwing up because of the chemo, who had to go home with my dad. ______,_______, and _______ all were in their 20's , they could go home and do whatever they wanted. And then fast forward to one year later, September 29th, 1995, and where was I? My dad remarried, the house was re-carpeted, re-painted, and re-furnished, and the woman wanting me to call her mom, (I later did) was abusing me physically and emotionally on a daily basis. Then we move to fucking bum fuck egypt, away from all my friends and family, and have to live in a shed with a bathroom for two years. Here I am though, watching my dad slowly die in front of me, and people ask why I act so goofy and childlike all the time. Well, read this story again, and you see why I say what I say to that inquiry:

"I've had enough serious moments in my life, I'll take the goofy ones when I can."