This is a short documentary called The Gospel According to Reverend Billy, from an outfit called Syndicate of Human Image Traffickers. This guy looks like a preacher but he’s decidedly against what most preachers seem to be preaching in our angelic little country. He’s Reverend Billy and he’s running for mayor in New York City. He thinks Mayor Bloomberg is a corporate Wall Street guy who represents the takeover of the monoculture. He’s right. I lived in New York for eight years in the 1980s. I remember it as being rough, exciting, nervous, overly work-oriented, and dirty. I visited just a few months ago. It’s now an open-air mall with a Starbucks and a Gap. Gee, thanks Rudi Guiliani for your cleanup. Micky Mouse would feel right at home on Times Square. New York is also home to the several thousand creeps on Wall Street who are personally responsible for trashing the U.S. economy and running criminal scams on a worldwide scale. Well, at least we know where they all live, right? When I lived in the city I worked with many different types of people in many businesses. I would always give the same advice to my friends and acquaintances who were looking for jobs: Never Never Never work for the money people. They are vicious and very poorly educated. I recall working for one of the biggest real estate investors in all of New York. He owned some of the famous big buildings. He was also prone to throwing insults around and yelling at employees. He spent eight hours per day for a full week having meetings in his office about the design for his new closet at home. On Friday at about 1:00 pm he emerged to ask me about a pile of papers I was supposed to have finished that week. I had put them all untouched in a pile that I labeled ‘Complete.’ He picked them up and riffled through them for several minutes. Then he threw them at me and screamed, ‘What the f— do you think you’re doing?’ I picked up the phone while giving him a giant smile and called my employment agency. I said, ‘I’m going to put you on the phone with Mr.____ and I’d like you to tell him to kiss my ass.’
As I walked down the hall, he was screaming at the top of his lungs, ‘Don’t you people ever even think about sending an a-hole like that over here again!’
Yep, that’s the kind of New York SOB I was back in the 80s. And I haven’t learned a thing. I’d still do it on any sunny Friday afternoon.
New York has about as much cultural energy now as Dallas, Texas. It’s like a zombie apocalypse in Manhattan. Everyone looks like they’re trudging to the office on a Sunday. The East Side – Woody Allen’s favorite – is the land of strange men in khaki dockers who buy baskets in small stores. I’m not sure why Reverend Billy would give a damn about being mayor of a dead city but he’s got my vote of confidence if he wants it.
As for the preacher bit, I’m not sure I like it. It’s some kind of a joke or then again maybe not. He likes the vocal patterns of the preacher for sure, but that’s not all of it. Couldn’t he borrow the vocal technique of the preacher without the costume? Oh nevermind, that would be Bill Clinton.