The Future of America has big biceps.
He wears tight shirts to show them off.
He saves his money to buy steroids to keep them big.
This matters. He wants people to stare at his arms.
He is a he, when he’s not a she.
When he’s a she, she cracks her gum and pads her breasts.
She has a dollar sign tattoo on the left cheek of her ass.
She watches cable shopping and America’s Next Top Model.
Let’s follow the Future of America. There he is now.
He gels his hair into black polished rock.
He is flexing in front of the mirror.
He has a big day ahead and must get pumped.
The Future of America is not worried, though.
He never worries.
The future will arrive, no matter what.
He can’t wait for the party that will be the future.
It will be grand, he knows, a nonstop celebration
with caviar, champagne, the best weed and private VIP rooms.
He will be the guest of honor, after all his name is the Future of America.
All the old folks who will not be invited to the party
keep telling him to get ready, it is coming.
They tell him he needs to prepare.
“But I am the Future of America,” he says, “I already am ready.
How dumb, you shouldn’t have to prepare for a party.”
So he plays video games and texts his buddies (He keeps his cell in one hand
at all times except when hoisting dumbbells, then stuffs it into his gym shorts pocket). He checks My Space and Twitter and Facebook a hundred times a day. He wants to be sure everyone knows how many aliens he’s blown-up, what brand of potato chip he’s eating, when his last bowel movement was. It is important to stay close to your friends, he thinks (he can’t tell you the color of their eyes).
He dropped out of school. He works sometimes at McDonald’s. He likes the smell of dead beef that clings to his skin even after showers. He is proud of the smell. It is so American, he thinks. But he would like a little more cash for pills and gadgets.
So, today is a big day. He must pass a certain test to receive his gold-embossed invitation to the really big party. It is called the GED Exam. Piece of cake, the Future of America thinks.
The Future of America sits in a room at a table.
He is told to turn off his cell phone, which irritates him.
He is given a pencil, which he asks how to use (he is used to pressing buttons).
He is shown a clock on the wall and told how long he has to answer all the questions.
He is proud that he needs no instruction how to read a clock, which boosts his
confidence as the test is passed out. Soon, I will be mailed my official invitation, he thinks. I wonder which shirt I should wear to the party, he wonders. Should I comb my hair straight back or to the side? I think the brown boots would look nice with my jeans—no, I should celebrate by buying new shoes before the party. I wonder if Lulu will be there, and Dave. I adore Lulu and Dave. I hope Zack doesn’t make it though. He is so stuck up it makes me gag. Maybe I will bring something with me, like a bottle of Jack Daniels. I know where Pops hides the booze cabinet key. No, maybe something classier—wine or something pretty. I am so excited! That girl over there—or is that a boy?—sure is cute and keeps looking over at me. Hi there (wave). I wonder if she/he notices my biceps? I wonder if he/she will be going to the party?
Well, I’d better get started. Oops. Wow. The clock says I only have a half hour left. My god, where does the time go? They really should give you more time. How unfair. Ok. Here we go:
Q. Name the four seasons.
(Oh my god, this is going to be easy).
- Salt, pepper, mustard and vinegar
Q. What guarantees may a mortgage company insist upon?
A. If you are buying a home they will insist that you are well endowed.
Q. In a democratic society, how important are elections?
A. Very important. Sex can only happen when a male gets an election.
Q. What happens to your body as you age?
A. When you get old, so do your bowels and you get intercontinental.
Q. What happens to a boy when he reaches puberty?
A. He says goodbye to his boyhood and looks forward to his adultery.
Q. Name a major disease associated with cigarettes.
A. Premature death.
Q. What is artificial insemination?
A. When the farmer does it to the bull instead of the cow.
Q. How can you delay milk from turning sour?
A. Keep it in the cow.
Q. What is the fibula?
A. A small lie.
Q. What is the most common form of birth control?
A. Most people prevent contraception by wearing a condominium.
Q. Give the meaning of the term “Cesarean section.”
A. The Cesarean section is a district in Rome.
Q. What is a terminal illness?
A. When you are sick at the airport.
Q. What does the word “benign” mean?
A. Benign is what you will be after you be eight.
The Future of America finishes and feels good. He texts his friends how easy the test was. He tells them not to even worry about studying, the questions are a joke. He celebrates by stopping on the way home and buying People magazine. He likes to look at pictures of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. They are in every issue. They are the most beautiful people in the world, the Future of America thinks. They are so important that People magazine features them every week. The Future of America dreams of one day being in People magazine. He wants to be important too. He goes home and sits on his bed and flips through the pages. He superimposes his head onto the rippling, muscled bodies at beaches and the tuxedoed models with perfect hair and white teeth in ads sitting around tables sipping martinis.
One day, one day, he thinks. Soon, soon…
It is a lot harder being the Future of American than most people think, the Future of America thinks…having to be patient and wait for your invitation.
He turns on the TV and flicks on the computer. He looks at his cell phone. Actually, the present is not all that bad, even if the future would never come (though he knows it will), the Future of America thinks. He likes to play these mind games of “what if,” which, if he plays too long, give him a headache. “Dad would never kick me out. I have a great job, friends. Ow! My brain is starting to hurt.”
He looks at his People magazine open on the bed. Jersey Shore comes on the TV. He likes that show. There are lots of muscular bodies on that show. The computer lights up. He is at peace knowing there are many others like him, which feels like he belongs. He is proud to be an American. And it will be even better once the party starts. He turns the TV sound up. He logs onto the computer. He looks over and stares at his cell phone on the counter. He wishes it would vibrate, and then it does.