Territorial Pissings

I learned black magic as a kid. I fell into it one day at church while flipping through the hymn book. The text held a secret just for me. That’s what I felt.

It said, “When peace, like a river, attendeth my way / When sorrows like sea billows roll / Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say / It is well, it is well with my soul.”

Or, in other words, “Sneak out to the cemetery tonight and piss on the most pompous-looking headstone, praising Satan.”

I was eleven at the time. I figured I must be the most evil kid in the whole town. All these people had love in their hearts and wore clean clothes. I wore hooded sweatshirts with stains and heard the voice of the devil in my hymn book.

This was in Montesano, Washington, a logging town of 3,000. Kurt Cobain lived there as a kid. Back then, he was the most satanic person around. I had his band teacher, Mr. Nelson.

“He played drums and sat in back with his hair long and unkempt,” Mr. Nelson would say.

I also had his history teacher, Mr. Winbeckler. “Every year I give a lesson on Eastern religions. It’s from this same lesson that Kurt got the name for his band. Nirvana.”

Skip ahead a few years and you’ve got “Territorial Pissings” on the airwaves.

When I was an alien, cultures weren’t opinions … Just because you’re paranoid don’t mean they’re not after you.

I snuck out Sunday night and walked a mile down the logging road in darkness so intense it had to be evil. No moon that night but there were plenty of bats.

I was pretty sure from what I’d heard in church that if I did black magic then I’d be cursed by God. Just look at what happened to Kurt. He lived a childhood of poverty and loneliness; he dedicated his life to angry music to exorcise his demons; he was catapulted into fame he didn’t even want and overnight became the biggest rock star in the world; he married Courtney Love who probably looked great naked and was also more than likely into Satan herself. And then he died on heroin and will live for eternity as a god-like legend and a cultural symbol of youth and rebellion. What a shitty life, huh? Who would ever want that?

It was in Sunday school, in fact, when I first invited Satan into my heart. Mr. Kramer, the teacher, said there could be no conversing with spirits, no magical spells, no playing with a Ouija board, not even as a joke, or else God would smite you.

Gotta find a way, a better way! screamed Kurt in my mind.

That lyric played full blast in my head until all the angels were too scared to get close to me. And that’s when Satan came in.

The thing with the hymn book happened next. I knew what I had to do.

In the cemetery, surrounded by crumbling gravestones, I unzipped and pulled out my eleven-year-old virgin prick. It was a powerful, magical wand in the night. The only gleaming thing in the world. The cemetery was shaking under my feet, the trees towering over me, the bats shrieking all around.

“Gotta find a way,” I chanted as an incantation, “a better way to get away. Gotta find a way…”

And the stream of piss poured down hot and wet, soaking the dignified gravestone of some random dead guy who probably croaked in old age after a dull life trusting in angels. Then I zipped up and ran home chanting the first words that came to mind, “It is well my soul.”