Swan Dive! Ch. 21: Life Begins at Deception

Smelling like a slice of sugar-coated gummy orange candy, citrus scented fumes wafted from Florida First Lady Jenna DeShifty’s deep perfumed cleavage like heat waves snaking off freshly poured Alligator Alley asphalt on a bare stretch of I-75.

Shaking her orange short shorts encased booty while lining up a golf ball for a drive, she wriggled one last time. Using an orange polished pinkie to push back a dangling lock of dyed strawberry blond hair, Jenna jiggled one more time. Then she squirmed again, like a shiver or a conniption fit, just for good measure.

Even in the deadly aftermath of Hurricane Ian, Jenna needed to get a golf club in her hands to keep up her image as a doting athletic wife, fundraiser and Christian among the fawning fans of non-thinking women who could not care less about patriarchy, oligarchy and right-wing anarchy. So Jenna hit the links with hubby governor Ronnie for a volunteer recruitment “drive” to call attention to the needs of the poor who lost everything in the historic storm.

One long drive to the fairway should do the trick. All Jenna needed to do was keep her eye on the ball, rear back and swing. Even a bad shot would serve her see-through altruistic purpose and allow the charity ladies, as she called her jewelry jiggling girlfriends, to feel philanthropic, fulfilled and convinced they truly cared about the downtrodden the way their personal savior Jesus wanted them to care.

“Those poor shrimp fishermen,” Jenna said. “I mean, shrimp cocktails are so necessary for on- the-go women like us to, like, I mean, to like, survive.”

Jenna often told female luncheon audiences how much she cared about women’s rights, regularly repeating how she once led a successful protest in high school to establish the first women’s varsity golf team which resulted in slashing the library budget. That victory prompted her in later life to call herself a “femalist” and campaign with her chauvinist pig sexist husband at women’s clubs that drew countless vacuous grand dames just like her, women who grazed across Florida like prime rib steers on farm-fed ranches that supplied America’s best beef.

The governor put up with Jenna even if she was a lousy duffer because she had memorized the first three chapters of Revelations from the Bible and could recite them at will at prayer breakfasts and the many anti-spay and neuter rallies she led because, like her husband, she opposed contraception even for stray cats.

Truth be told, though, Jenna and Ronnie believed only in the higher power of themselves.

“Always keep them guessing,” Ronnie often told his wife. “Life begins at deception.”

Russian thug Ivan Popov stood nearby leering and taking nips from a pint bottle of Smirnoff he pulled from the waistband of his mint green shorts covered by the tail of a periwinkle polo shirt. Billionaire brother Borys stood beside Governor Ronnie DeShifty who smiled and signed autographs for his biggest re-election donors, adding the flourish of a bold lightning bolt beneath his name that rivaled anything German SS officers engraved on their letterhead or rally flags.

The governor never let an opportunity to cash in pass so he had invited his biggest donors to attend Jenna’s volunteer reception drive. He’d make a killing in contributions while she offered condolences to unfortunate taxpayers and uninsured home owners ravaged by the latest Florida natural disaster.

“Charging $10,000 a hole is genius, your honor,” Borys said.

“With an extra hundred thousand contribution at the 19th hole,” DeShifty said.

“I meet you at 19th,” Ivan said with a wave before waddling off to the cabana bar where the after party meet-and-greet would commence and shifty campaign contributors would sign their biggest checks to DeShifty.

Sam Bennett and RayRay watched from behind a Golden Dewdrop bush with frilly purple flowers and golden berry clusters that fronted the clubhouse at the Mana Tee Off Golf Club, a private resort that catered to cigar-chomping men of the world whose conservative politics leaned to the right of the late Italian strongman Benito Mussolini.

“This is worse than when all the Mafia bosses met at that Apalachin summit in 1958,” RayRay said. “These are the wealthiest crooked businessmen in Florida with a sprinkling from Nevada and Pennsylvania.”

Sam glared.

“How dare they make fun of manatees by naming their club after my sweet sea cows,” Sam said. “Somebody needs to tee off on them.”

“Gulls, manatees, whatever,” RayRay said. “These boys are rich and comfortable enough to make fun of everything. They say they’re born again and specialize in meanness.”

“Thanks for wearing a mask,” Sam said.

“It makes it harder to put my face on a wanted poster, like yours,” RayRay said.

Sam sounded committed and calm.

“I need to make sure my exploding golf balls work,” Sam said.

As always, Sam had a plan.

A good bottle of extra-strength Dos Locos tequila easily persuaded Pancho, who drank at RayRay’s and worked washing dishes in the country club kitchen, to swipe the event guest list including mailing addresses for all well-heeled donors and do-gooder Republican women. Sam could send a special exploding golf ball to each highfaluting hotshot with the forged governor’s autograph inscribed on the ball. He also planned to surreptitiously scatter plain white exploding golf balls on golf courses throughout the state. He’d borrow RayRay’s car and enjoy a few days driving around scattering his special load.

Sam Bennett hated golfers.

Exploding golf balls would induce panic among upper and middle classes alike. Campaign donors would refuse to meet and play with DeShifty. A whole hierarchy of women’s clubs would steer clear of leisurely mornings, afternoons, tournaments and fundraisers. Those who braved the terror would risk coming face-to-face with balls that might blow up and set their leg hair on fire.

The press would go wild.

DeShifty would lose.

By terrorizing denizens of the green, Sam figured he’d be doing society a favor. Golf grabs duffers by the birdie worse than Catholicism, evangelism and circumcision. The game takes over the mind, offering obsessive appeal, working its way into even limited self-image and controlling spare time better spent on better endeavors.

Golf stole America’s working and middle class compass back in the 90s when blue-collar adults took up the game and taught their sons who quickly turned their backs on jobs as bricklayers, bakers, butchers, postal carriers, carpenters, laborers or even cops and firemen, resulting in this new breed of generation wanting “work” as financial advisors and stock brokers. Without experience these new golfers wanted jobs as insurance and real estate managers. Stock brokers, for Christ’s sake! These egotistical narcissistic and aspiring aristocrats expected to golf during the week with clients at country clubs and remain aloof from the maddening crowd.

Sam offered no mercy.

Some golfing exceptions exist but not many. Sam only knew one or two rare rugged golfers capable of going back to riding a soul-shaking Harley Davidson after putt-putt-putting around an immaculately manicured course like privileged patricians decked out in pastels and plush pomposity.

Crude as it sounds most golfers thought their feces didn’t fume which brings us back to First Lady Jenna DeShifty who was about to become Jenna DeShitty all over again.

Putting a finger to his waxy lips, the governor called for silence as Jenna lined up the drive. Wriggling and giggling, she called as much attention to herself as she could muster. The volunteer ladies beamed, watching with wonder at her self-confidence. Fat cat donors stared in awe of her waggle, a subtle butt shake Jenna practiced after seeing professional golfers shake their booty on TV to relax during a Pro-Am Tour.

Sam held his breath as Jenna prepared to slam the special golf ball he had hand-crafted. Pancho placed the special ball on top of the pile of balls in the bucket no questions asked in exchange for a happy hour’s worth of free tequila.

Sam had spray painted the ball hot pink, Jenna’s favorite color, and hand-inscribed her initials on the ball in gold paint. Even from a distance Sam could almost feel the ball’s pulse like it was alive, which wasn’t that far out scientifically or mechanically. Millions of tiny bacteria including swarming E. coli, Salmonella, Campylobacter, Cryptosporidium (“Crypto” for short). and other grisly germ parasites crawled, paddled, dove, waded and glided around in the gull poop.

Sam had packed and jammed the ball so tightly with gull guano the round white bitter pill was all but ready to explode all by itself like the Big Bang that created the universe even without the help of a mini explosive detonator about to blast off on impact. Once again Jenna DeShifty was about to get the shitty end of the stick.

Holding with nine degrees of loft a $579.99 Taylor Made Stealth Driver she had received as a gift from the Fetus Power political action committee that worked to empower the unborn with all the rights of a human, including, credit cards, in-the-womb mortgage applications and scratch-off instant winner lottery tickets, Jenna stood with her brown and white saddle shoes one foot apart, lining up the special golf ball with her front heel.

Jenna gripped the club firmly but gently in order to hit the ball at a good, consistent distance. Jenna started her backswing, shifting her weight into what the governor called the honey buns of her tightened bottom.  Jenna kept the start of her downswing calm and unhurried at an easy pace so she could pick up speed before hitting the ball. This enables you to build up speed so that the golf club is still accelerating when it reaches the ball. Jenna swung in one single movement that utilized her entire body at the same time.

Despite all the practice, charm and poise, despite planning and privilege, destiny came her way.

First Lady Jenna DeShifty found herself shit out of luck.

The club hit the ball.

The shit hit the fairway.

The activated mulligan booby trap and subsequent ordure outbreak sent everybody running for cover. A few stalwart global business thieves reached for their handguns concealed in Velcro thigh holsters available in extra hefty sizes that could easily fit under the leg of any size Bermuda shorts. Others ran for their cars screaming for their drivers, worried that the Mexicans they saw in the kitchen might be part of a cartel specializing in kidnapping American business executives. At least one social media CEO hit the ground, expecting machine gun fire.

Otherwise uninjured, First Lady Jenna DeShifty dripped doo doo from head to toe, a victim of a gull lover’s irritable bowel syndrome turned irritable bomb syndrome.

If what’s done is done, so, too, is what’s dung is dung. Florida remains a mushrooming political madhouse fertilized with financial avarice, racial bigotry and flagrant stupidity. Societal Armageddon hangs in the balance.

Between Sam’s drone attacks and the exploding golf balls, he’d wake up the world.

Russian leader Vladimir Putin has threatened to go nuclear.

Our hero went one better.

Sam Bennett went pooplear.