Karma, Purgatory, Bureaucracy


Karma, Purgatory, Bureaucracy

“Just another number”.

Be there “no Karma about it” but THE RECENTLY DECEASED will hit that old after-life office with the thud of paperwork.

(Reminds me of the ole’ Social Security office)

Franz Kafka couldn’t have said it better, whether just the victim is mad or “THE SYSTEM”, itself is even crazier. . . . . and remember, that guy in the “Metamorphosis” story did turn into an insect. OR EVEN A BEETLE.

A lot of people “kill time” in the waiting room, bearing the incarnation they took when “struck-down, mortally”. The visual cue—its own kind of karma whether you’re a shrunken-head on the leash of a witch-doctor as it didn’t end well for the big game hunter.

Don’t go smoking in bed, either—or take poison which will turn you into an icky, translucent green like the secretary behind the sliding window.

Perky, pert, and sarcastic—if not despondent in this perfect illustrated example of the mind/body and material/spiritual splits that cleaves the world into an alienated hell.

Ole’ Beetlejuice pops his head in and takes a seat. I’d imagine him probably sticking his hand down the front of his pants like Al Bundy in “Married with Children”. Half-resourceful or maybe just fool-hardy “no one will notice” as he lopes across the parking lot to grab a cooler of beer.

You’d imagine he’d only lose his place in line.

Solely the balance between evidence and lyricism can allow us to achieve simultaneous emotion and lucidity. . . . . but there he hollers at his loss.

In this last week, we’ve lost Chris Cornell—the singer from Soundgarden—and Roger Ailles—the chairman of Fox News. Only out of an episode of “Adult Swim” could these figures every encounter each other.

The moody rock singer leans up on the chair, hang-dog with his hands stretched over his knee while the right-wing chieftain tries to bluster and glad-hand his way out of federal commitment for dinner reservations “elsewhere”.

There’s only a few things certain in this life. . . . . death, taxes, and irate constituents.

End up here and you have to meet your quota of lingering, ghostly “overtime” back on earth. Spook the hell out of the living for a spike of adrenaline and ecto-residue that kicks into your early retirement, building enough parasitically-fueled power to ascend up the spiritual pyramid to eternal bliss.

Sounds like Medicare and Social Security.

You’ll pay though. . . . . they’ll take everything “but the squeal”.

Death. Taxes. Hollywood sequels. . . . .

Welcome to America. You could die laughing. . . . .


“No dream”, kid. This was your life! Remember to Linger in the graveyard and pick the daisies before summoning for pizza on the Ouija board.

Karma, Purgatory, Bureaucracy

The Grim Reaper Speaketh!

Here is an hilarious grip from “Monty Python & The Meaning of Life” when the film-set is visited by the Grim Reaper, itself. This is close to my conception as a kind of boss or overlord of the netherworld whom Beetlejuice must answer to, like a supervisor in a kind of social work or IRS debt-collection service.

We must “pay our dues”, after-all as Beetlejuice “goes through a portal” and is summoned on some far-off, grisly planet between realms where he and Death have business.

In a flutter of spectral rags and diseased skeleton-fingers, Death towers over Beetlejuice and his cousin Hugo as they are made to take account. The universe of karma “keeps its own books” as suffering is what makes life and death “go around”. You see Beetlejuice lashed to “a wheel of pain” where he grinds around and turns the clock of the universe as Death and Father Time laugh, kicking him in the buttocks with a sandaled foot and Hades, of the underworld pulls-along a chariot as they all sit there like middle-managers in the hierarchy of the afterlife. Maybe even the Norse god, Wotan as they knock back doughnuts and add to the quotas of Beetlejuice’s suffering on this hellish service “neither here nor there”.

A ghoul’s work is never done– as Beetlejuice always shirks duty and there Death is before a computer, knocking-back coffee and supervising his quadrant “as the scales must be kept”– even pressing a “Kill” button that drops a piano on some hapless earthling walking-down the sidwalk.

A two-headed vulture sits on Death’s shoulder and parrots advice like good and evil nature as Death clicks around the desktop and truly, lords over all before making on-sight appearences like supervisory manager “on the killing floor”.

Will Beetlejuice get away from the crushing load of debt? Or is it “death”? No rest for the wicked, and if it’s anything certain it’s “death and taxes”. So pay the piper and answer your summons to the netherly dimension, here between the star-cluster Beetlegeuse and Alpha Centauri. Be there!


The Grim Reaper Speaketh!

The Hierarchy of Hell: Who’s Who in Lucifer’s Underworld – article by Daz Lawrence

Facinating article, here– in the vein of my version of Beetlejuice 2, a bit

The Hierarchy of Hell: Who’s Who in Lucifer’s Underworld – article by Daz Lawrence.

Hell would strike me as a comical place, the nether-world like a janitorial sweep up of “karma” as you meet the after-life’s minions, led by the Grim Reaper. Yes, all sorts of reality/splicing animation sequences as one thing is certain– Beetlejuice must “pay his dues”, or else get vomited down on living Earth without his magician’s super-powers and otherwise meet his fate as he must find a way to crawl back to his lowly-abode.

If you can think of the “ooohhy-ohh” chant from “The Wizard of Oz” you’d get the idea– hell’s minions tolling in a dead sleep like working under “Father Time”, the boss– as you can bring in all sorts of creative guesswork.

How about “Death” at his computer– working over a spreadsheet and figuring-out “who to smite” with the press of a button? Like working life, death is full of quotas as I won’t kid you about “dead-end” jobs.

You’d have to see it to believe it– as toil continues on my vision of “Beetlejuice 2”. See you soon.

The Hierarchy of Hell: Who’s Who in Lucifer’s Underworld – article by Daz Lawrence