Jim Trainer


In Uncategorized on September 24, 2020 at 3:16 pm

I’m so glad I got all my shit together just in time for dystopia.
-Pamela Dawson

Early this morning I shit myself standing up. I was ‘roided to the tits for days prior and south Texas was gripped by a “false Fall”–grey and warm and about to rain every day since the summer broke, whenever that was. The two officers who shot and killed Breonna Taylor were not charged today and there is no face in this country as beautiful and gone as hers. Her face will come to symbolize a freedom the working poor will never have. These are strange days. No bottom to the abyss, as John Cusack put it last year and without presentism, or any faith that things will be as they are based on how they were, the days grind by and the nights come on with dread. I’ve run out of wisdom posts ago. We’re all so sick of it coming but stuck and held in place waiting for whatever it is to get here. I don’t want to write this post. I don’t want to write. I don’t want to do anything but that’s probably my problem.

I’ve come at depression and low self worth for years with work. Now I’ve got a body of it. So what. My writing’s gotten better. Good thing, too–if I still wrote like I did in ’10 I would’ve hung myself by now, with or without a decade done and almost six-hundred fifty of them in the can. I hit my stride Good Reader. I got better in every sense. Though my guts are wrecked. And my sex drive is stalled. My diet’s alright. I’m able to keep the anger mostly in check. I work in the daytime and come home and do the real work. I’ve everything I ever wanted. I should’ve wanted more. It’s a strange sense regretting things, now that we’re in a state of diminish and free fall. Strange to regret not traveling more now that I can’t travel at all. Strange to come up on 10 years writing here and release a 6th collection–a Going For The Throat Anthology. It’s strange to want anything other than what I have but coming up empty, too, thinking I should want more.

The cops who shot Breonna Taylor, dead, in her home, won’t be charged. 200,000 people have died from a disease the leader of this country won’t acknowledge, let alone treat and try and contain. I’ve fought against depression and abysmal self-worth for my whole life and I’m sitting on a body of work. I can write my way out and through and it’s everything I ever wanted. So what.

Curator at Going For the Throat, columnist for Into The Void, progenitor of stand-up tragedy™. Jim Trainer publishes a collection of poetry every year through Yellow Lark Press. To sign up for Jim Trainer’s Poem Of The Week, visit jimtrainer.net.




In Uncategorized on September 17, 2020 at 2:43 pm

I’ve been sick for years. Trauma is a motherfucker. When I struck out on my own in ’17 I had to confront a post-crash market with the same lack of skills or degree. I’d since thrown out my serving blacks and swore I’d never go back. Alas, while delivering hundreds of cold lunches to elementary schools in W. San Antone, I’d get overcome with uncontrollable bowel movements–well, I could control them if I held the cheeks of my ass together and punched the roof of the cab with my free hand as I drove. When I finally got to where I was going it’d only be wet gas. It got worse the worse my employment situation became. I left the lunch delivery gig and signed on as an electrical supply courier. I had to be in Round Rock every day by 4AM. I was usually done 12 hours later, making about $140 a day. I’d be hauling tons of copper from Waco on an 18′ stake bed and with it shimmying in the wind the whole time behind me. I’d deliver massive comp reels and great long lengths of lead and fixture. I’d pull in to the job site and off the wet road and sink into the endless black mud or stand around in the Samsung lot in the cold pre-dawn dark and have to shit the whole fucking time. No quarter until the drop was made and I could whip around to the Exxon at Grand Park off 35, a heinous and horrible super 7-11, with shit food and never-cleaned bathrooms without toilet paper. I’d squat over the bowl clutching a handful of wet paper towels from the sinks but nothing would come out. My diet was pretty bad then. Could’ve been worse but Turkey burgers and vegan cheese snacks, whole wheat bread and carrots, gas station coffee and convenience store donuts isn’t the food regimen for optimal gut health. Not to mention the stress.

My roommate was a freeloading ponce and toad into me for $1,750 by the time I moved out. He never bought food or toilet paper but was quick to ask for the rent. It was hard then, one of the worst times of my life but I’d done some groudwork. Progress might not have much to do with the externals ain’t it, just that when the shit hits you know better how to flinch and anyway get on and through with it without it taking too much of your pride. Which doesn’t say anything about my guts. My guts were gone and have been ever since. I’m fucked up, Good Reader, though I took some good turns after after my stint as a blue-collar truck driver. It’s getting better though it’s still not great. I mean to say I’m still sick.

I made my way back into the food service industry. That didn’t help with the anxiety or my angry and upset bowels–and there isn’t anything to eat on a catering job when you’ve got IBD. The reason I held on to these jobs at all was due to a bad trauma I suffer from being homeless at 20. Ought to explain why though it says nothing of how little I knew I could do, behind a desk working for a non profit which is what I find myself doing today.

I thank the lucky Gods too, and my Boss, for giving me a chance. I’ve got insurance. My colonoscopy will end up costing me two grand, scripts and all. We think it’s ulcerative colitis. I spent the weekend horizontal, unable to shit but feeling like I had to go the whole time. Monday I must’ve released 50 straight feet of shit. It was solid, there was no blood but it hurt coming out. It always does. I’m sick Good Reader. Damn near incontinent. What do you think about that? There were things I should’ve done by now and don’t you know I really wish I had, before the cashout and Oligarchy came calling and home to roost, before Bin Laden and Putin’s wet dreams came true for this country but, the truth is…even with all the ruin and tyranny that’s here and getting closer irrefutably, I might’ve could’ve done something–at least saved some money or got out of country for awhile. Can’t do that now, I know. Of course what would I do when I got there, if I got there at all without my sigmoid colon blown out on some bad road between here and Guadalajara?

Time comes for us all I guess. The phone stops ringing, you’re stuck with the life you were living when you were too cool for the other. You get old. Even then, with all my diminishing libido and bedtime blues, the fact that I can’t-shit or have to shit-all-the-time, can’t read or drink and otherwise haven’t had any real fun in years–how could I possibly go about changing now? It’s probably too late for that old life which is a sadness that lays on the lungs like a sack of lead. It’s the Final Century Good Reader, though we’ll be lucky to get through the 20s. The bell curve of history look like a tidal wave. The coast is on fire and our elections are rigged. I don’t see a future for the middle class, entertainers have less to say to me and the working poor than they ever did, at the street level the music industry is dead, which means, we’re stuck with the dead generations’ greatest hits, spinning blindly from our prosthetic technologies as methane levels lock us in and border crossings close. Grim shakes it’s true all around. I just hope I don’t shit my pants today.


Curator at Going For the Throat, columnist for Into The Void, progenitor of stand-up tragedy™. Jim Trainer publishes a collection of poetry every year through Yellow Lark Press. To sign up for Jim Trainer’s Poem Of The Week, visit jimtrainer.net.


In Uncategorized on September 10, 2020 at 5:26 pm

I never thought I’d be so glad to have Writer’s Block. I’d been throwing down and slinging 6 and 1,200 word posts and columns like lightning. I was getting lucky too long. I stayed out of the hot seat and got away from the worming of the world by divulging great and grisly psychological weather and personal detail. Then the American Century ended. Well, depending on who you ask–could’ve been any number of dark days in the 80s…or the countless times we went back to the well of hegemony and waged endless war. I’m not sure myself, I avoided politics as long as I could, but I’d put good money that even Saint Mike could get behind, on the day when capitalist labor and modern day slavery, corporatocracy writ large and the monopolization of media, glommed into a giant, 244-year old ball of shit, lost it’s thrust and started to roll back–and you know what they say about shit rolling, it started doubling back and coming downhill and all over us. That’s when the working poor got rubbed out of history and thrown into the breach of an insurmountable wealth divide.

The worst news is often the news nobody hears, or says anyway. Not Obama and not the Bushes, nor the Clintons and certainly not this clown up here having a run for Dictatorship in the Year of the Metal Ox. The market crash of ’09 was it Good Reader, kiss your middle class and healthcare and standard of living goodbye. Mind you, harbingers of ecological scarcity begetting terrorism and constant war, the outsourcing of American labor and rise of the Corporate State all but guarantee this country will never be as good as it is today, and today, Saturday September 5 in the Year of the Rat is worse than it’s ever been. That’ll fuck the mind. Or what’s left of it after surviving The America. I did alright. Made it through alcoholism and day labor, amour fou and communal living. I never got into politics but thanks to Going For the Throat, I never had to.

Personal Journalism. It was a way of life. I wrote my way through. It wasn’t so much about what was happening as what had to be endured. And as sex-crazed and wet-brained as I was, I’m still not too far gone. At least I know the difference between getting fucked and making love but now I ain’t doing either. Hit the testosterone dip, can take sex or leave it, going bald on top, have a bedtime, eat meals, the whole nine and anyway live well-adjusted and healthier than I’ve ever been. I probably sold out and without too much to show for it but at least I prioritized. I’ve foregone love and fame and savings, holding on to my solitude the whole time and above all. I’m sitting here writing ain’t I which only goes to show. The world’s offbeat too ain’t it, ego and greed have run the clock down. It’s Shadowtime in the Anthropocene which, for me, is plenty fine to write about from the desk on a quiet Saturday in one of America’s cities where they’re not lining up with semi-automatics like they are in Louisville right now. Put it to you plain and country simple, right now there’s a Trump parade on Lake Travis, boats full of dickheads flying red flags in the wide open and folks gathered and spiking Corona levels watching from the shore. As I write and close in on 600 words here, I come to peace in my own way. A whole other set of folks will be taking to the streets later, on foot, and cops in riot gear will hang back in alleys as they pass, like they did when Garrett Foster was murdered and then let his killer Daniel Perry drive away, scot-free and without a charge.

I came here to tell you I mean to write more responsibly. Thoughtful, less personal and more journalist, but then I was rolling and having the kind of fun that hasn’t failed me in 10 years and over seventy-five thousand words yet. Old boy’s still got it, fat and old as I am, and I suppose I’ll always relish in shooting my mouth off this way. I was at a loss though, writing Part 30 of The Grind last week, and I can’t make sense or come to any wisdom about Dictatorship in the Year of the Metal Ox. There really isn’t anything to do or say. No point in looking into border crossings and naturalization laws. At a loss. A big one. Fuck me and fuck us all. From rope’s end this is Jim Trainer signing off.


Curator at Going For the Throat, columnist for Into The Void, progenitor of stand-up tragedy™. Jim Trainer publishes a collection of poetry every year through Yellow Lark Press. To sign up for Jim Trainer’s Poem Of The Week, visit jimtrainer.net.