So Iím broke again.

This is just one more piece of bad news in a generally troubling time.

Between my girlfriend, my uncle and my mother, I feel squeezed dry of everything but pain.

Each one seems to inspire guilt in me.

Even my ex-wife seems desperate for help.

I supposed guilt is a good motivator.

Fran uses it most effectively on me, as if a whip, snapping me back into line each time I make noise that I am my own person.

Last night, she told me how unwell she is, and how she needs more attention from me.

I left without saying good bye, a bit cruel since I know she honestly feels pain, too.

But I needed to escape her moaning quickly before I said something rash. This made me seem like I do not care about her, when I do.

She called me at work. She repeated her claims about her ill health, and asked why I had rushed out.

I donít always understand my impulses.

But I have always fled uncontrollable situations, quitting high school, my family, even some jobs when they threatened to overwhelm me. I even quit Dr. Thomas this year -- but that was mostly financial since I got a secret kick out of his frustration at my analysis. I didnít lie; but I shaped my life in dramatic terms as if was writing a stage play.

With Fran, like is always a matter of muddling through some uncontrollable situation, working out the details as if tip towing through shards of glass.

One misstep and I bleed for a week.

Letís face it; Iíve always been the bull in the china shop.

Dr. Thomas claims I have a fear of success.

I suppose this is true. Yet I donít always see the point of succeeding, when the primary indicator is accumulated wealth.

Iíve had some other strange developments lately.

I keep getting calls from Scientologists for me to attend a great gathering on Saturday, they spreading the alarm that something has happened or will happen that ďaffects all mankind.Ē

Iíd rather stay home and read about UFOs. They make more sense.

Iím of the Woody Allan School of enlightenment: I donít mind the world coming to an end as long as Iím not there when it happens.

As these nuts ponder off the book of Revelations for signs of the end, I search out Jules Verne for ways to get out before the horsemen arrive.

The Bible appears to be full of space encounters, and it was good enough for the Old Testament, it is good enough for me.

I keep asking my religious friends whether or not Christ will come down in a space ship (aka Close Encounters) when He returns.

I got hooked on Jung for a while, but gave him up when he claimed UFOs were mere projections of the human mind, much in the way angels were prior to modern technology.

The damned fool has no imagination, and seems more sour that the Scientologists. What was it that Mark Twain said about the Old and New Testament Gods: One wanted to make hell on earth for humanity, while the kinder Christ created hell for us for all eternity?

Jung adds to our misery by removing the escape hatch.

I was baptized a Christian, but will all the nuts that profess to be Christians these days; Iím examining the fine print of my contract for an escape clause there as well.

Lifeís troubles shapes people into two kinds of people: those that figure to get as much fun out of life before the hammer of damnation falls, and those that believe there is some benevolent being beyond our reality that will reward us for restraining ourselves.

Pauly called God ďa sadist,Ē which sort of fits with Phillip K Dickís idea that God may hate us, and puts us through all this misery so as to be less bored in that place full of sanctimonious Christians.

I prefer the idea that there are alien races watching over us, waiting for their chance to invade.

Most likely, if such races exist and are watching us, they treat the rise and fall of the human race as something of a bitter sweet comedy, a Charlie Chaplin film with the majority of us stumbling over our own feet, banging our heads on walls, the victim of falling pianos and such -- and thanking the Lord for His blessing after each disaster.

Perhaps God and the Aliens both like to torture us with occasional revelations, giving us glimpses of the perfect society we are too stupid to ever achieve.

Fran thinks we live in a world of playful spirits, a kind of jet set of elite beings who wander into our world like spoiled movie stars, mocking us the way American tourists often mock natives of other countries.

Perhaps the angels and aliens use us for some perverse pleasure, akin to the secret vices of the extremely wealthy, who pay to have sex with underage girls and boys and engage in every more disturbing habits.

If so, the world religions seem hopelessly deluded, thinking they will find salvation in the arms of such selfish beings -- or perhaps salvation being a kind of perverse invitation to eternal vice.

Iím tempted to go to the Scientology meeting after all, just to suggest this new theory of mine.

No, they would break out the torches and pitch forks, or put me on a cross to die.


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