Karma (Sanskrit: कर्म , kárman- "act, action, performance"; Pali: kamma; Chinese: 因果 yinguo ) is the concept of "action" or "deed" in Indian religions understood as that which causes the entire cycle of cause and effect (samsara) described in Hindu, Jain, Sikh and Buddhist philosophies.
That's what Wikipedia says. In other words, what goes around comes around.
As I sat in my office today gloating about my brilliant play with Smithee, a.k.a. Nick Zima, a man popped his head inside my door and identified himself as Detective Curran. My bumptious smile dropped quickly as I stood up to shake his extended hand. He looked like Warren Beatty maybe as Dick Tracy without the hat.
"You work for Alan Smithee, is that right?"
Who called the cops? What fucking idiot called the cops?
"When was the last time you saw him?" he asked.
I thought for a moment. Maybe I should come clean and say I've never seen him because he doesn't exist. It's always hard to admit you've been lying. But in this case, I'm dealing with the law.
"Well, that would've been on Wednesday," I said, ignoring common sense. "He's been missing. I guess that's what your here for, huh?"
"Actually," he said, as he sat at my table. "We found him."
That's when my eyes fell out of my head and rolled around on the floor. It was hard to keep a straight expression. I mean, the cops found an imaginary person that I made up in my head. I like to think I handle anxiety and stress really well, but I think at that moment you could probably see my heart pounding through my shirt. I sat down, unable to speak, looked at Callahan and made some sort of expression on my face that probably meant, Tell me more, I'm just dying to fucking hear this...
"Alan Smithee is actually Nick Zima, the porn star," he said. "And of course, Nick Zima is his stage name. His real name is Johnny Boz."
"He cashed his checks for Smithee the same way he cashed his checks for Nick Zima. With a counter signature using his real name. That's how we connected the two. At first, it was as if Smithee didn't even exist. Funny, huh?"
I attempted a courtesy chuckle, but the sound I made was more like me choking to death.
"Good," I said. "Then I guess you've found him."
"Yep, we found him all right," Curran said.
Then he just stared at me as if I were supposed to respond somehow. I raised my eyebrows, stared back at Curran, being very confused by his look.
"Uhhh," I said. And that's all I said.
"We found him dead in his apartment," Curran said.
I nearly fell off my chair. He really was dead? Holy fucking shit! I muttered for a few seconds before actual words escaped my lips.
"Was it an accident or did he..." Oh, please don't let it be the latter. That might make me somehow responsible. "... Commit suicide?"
"Well," Curran began. "He was tied down with an ice pick stuck in his chest. So I'm guessing neither."
Great. Just great. How does everything I think these days keep becoming reality? I think I'm losing my mind. Of course, the bright side is that all the gambling on the matter may actually pay off for someone after all...
I had a severe case of cotton mouth by this time, but I still managed to ask:
"How can I help?"
"Where were you on Wednesday night?" Curran asked.
It didn't click at first, although it should have. This is the classic question that signifies, You are the prime fucking suspect.
Once it did click, the rest of my mind was suddenly a blank. I stammered, having absolutely no idea where I was on Wednesday night. Which of course, made me look guilty as hell. Guilty of killing, I might remind you, an imaginary person. The same imaginary person who I pretended had been murdered by an employee of this company. Of course, the porn star who actually pretended to be my imaginary person was the guy who actually got murdered, and now I'm somehow a suspect. I should write a book... Or, I could just keep writing this blog...
"Athena," I said. "Athena... Athena the Lesbian. I was with Athena the Lesbian."
Forget the fact that this will ruin my marriage. Becoming someone's bitch in prison will kill the marriage anyway.
Then I thought about the details of my alibi. I left Athena the Lesbian's place at about 11:00 p.m. I got home around 11:30 p.m. My wife was out like a light and didn't wake up when I got into bed. I like it that way so she can't ask me questions. So I'm very quiet when I come home and get ready for bed. Which means... I really don't have an alibi after 11:00 p.m.
"What time did it happen? I asked.
"Around midnight," he said.
Detective Curran told me that he'd be in touch, most likely Monday. And he said to have a good weekend.
Well my friends... Karma is a bitch. I hope you all have a good weekend. I'll be spending my weekend curled up in the fetal position weeping like a baby.
This post is dedicated to the late Nick Zima, my good friend and partner in crime, whom I DID NOT murder. Thanks for listening...