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Sunday, November 28, 2010

flats and tubulars II

(flats and tubulars I) (enter Shitbird)

I roll out of bed and slip into knee-high socks just before my feet hit the floor, a mixture of rock, gravel and earth, a reminder that I am below ground. I ignore the cross-border shelling on the radio and the sniveling little smart-ass from the BBC reporting on it. I slap some jam on butterless toast and hum Boys of Summer, and I scratch myself just above that useless piece of bone at the bottom of your spine – a reminder that once, a long time ago, we had tails.

Then, for reasons only I am aware of, I think of that snotty squirt I punched in the nose that summer down in Dubrovnik, and I stop what I’m doing, what with all that blood running down his face. But Boys of Summer cuts in and I am humming again, chewing toast as North Korea threatens the South with total annihilation.

The guy with jam on his face, the guy humming Boys of Summer, that’s Lui Labas, and we are inside his head. You should not be asking yourself whether a young man like Lui ought to be humming such a tune at daybreak wearing y-fronts and socks, and what kind of message that sends. Instead, you should be asking yourself about the guy sitting across from him, the guy in the suit scribbling numbers in a notebook – that would be Shitbird – scribbling and shaking his fountain pen that is threatening to dry up in his hand as he prepares to sum the Grand Total of his and Lui’s spectacular financial straits. And you should be concerned with the Yak-haired Yeti, three heads taller than either of them, standing at the stove preparing oeuf-au-plat for his guests.

These should be your concerns. Plus, above ground, hovering in the ionosphere in a small carbon-molecule craft are two guys you should also be concerned with; two guys typing up a report about their observations on the ground and the best way to impress their sergeant-superior. Especially how to sell to him that the footage they hold in their hands, showing flats and tubulars in a ritual interlocking of limbs, was indeed recorded live by them, and is not part of an elaborate montage recorded – typically – on the Golden Coast of the Americas, and sold as compact discs at refueling posts along transport corridors, so called, highways.

Why can’t we just tell him we recorded it ourselves?

Because he’ll know we’re lying.

Why? He’d have to track down the flats in question?

Oh yeah, and when he asks you how you managed to get right up against that flat, right in the middle of the action, without being seen, what are you going to tell him then, you dipstick?

No, no, we just tell him we were PART of the action.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

in your heart, a kamikaze

I am told we are not bushfires, but human beings. We congregate and interact peaceably; we shake hands and rub elbows. On occasion we binge on substance and fill our bellies to sickness with foodstuff. On occasion we vomit in corridors and fire off guns at passersby. On occasion we penetrate damsels and tear clothes from their bodies – the vicious among us, without permission. On occasion we wear our hatred as a badge of honor and rampage without restraint – the Kazakhs were Huns once; the Swedes Visigoths – but all in all, history aside, we are a kindly folk when we snicker at the lamentations of housewives on the tube. We are a kindly folk when we prepare macaroni and wonder about boiling points and condensation in the fridge. We are a kindly folk when we pick up dog turds with plastic gloves. Kindly, when amazed at the size of this orbiting landmass that houses our skinny asses. Kindly even when we grovel, when we look like shit, and when we suck in a big way.

But don't be fooled. In your heart is a wiry, short-legged kamikaze. He has no name (unless you have given him one). He does not fuss over he-said-she-said, and he does not give two turds about what is cool and what is not. But he will, at the drop of a hat, throw himself unarmed at an enemy barrage; and we will, with his bare fists, fight off an angry mob of humans to save your skinny ass.

Yes, he’s Japanese, yes, he doesn’t speak a word of English, yes, yes, yes. So what! He may look a bit funny and “old world”, he may be impetuous and unkindly at times, and he won't pick up dog turds, but he’s your kamikaze, and at the end of the day he’s also your man against conquering Huns and Visigoths, not the he nor she in he-said-she-said. So when he shows his face in your heart of hearts, when he gets up to show himself, DO NOT act like you don’t know him! Put down your i-phone, get off your skinny ass and show him some respect.

Don't be a pansy.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

enter Shitbird

[Aloysius Constantine Shitbird: 5ft 4. Colorblind. Cyprio-Montenegrin. Scorpio. Skeptic. Pain-in-the-ass]

We have been traversing the European continent without respite for well-nigh two months now, laying bricks in Bratislava, groveling for food in Dortmunt, and from Lille , escaping by the skin of our teeth.

It has been a lively peregrination, without a doubt, but crisscrossing thus has left us stranded on German soil, currently near Frankfurt, out of funds, out of food, and looking for a way home.

We spent most of yesterday debating what home is, exactly – not a simple matter – and it might have been shortened considerably were it not for Lui’s obsession of late with an alleged encounter on a rooftop two weeks ago.

I was out taking a piss, Shitbird, when these two wraithy dudes in uniform come down from the heavens. Barely had time to tuck in my prick and these guys were huddled around me looking quizzical and scientific. Plus, no gunboat overhead – no flashing saucers, nothing – so how these yoyos alighted on that rooftops, Shitbird, is a mystery, ungodly and unprovable.

Exactly my point.

What do you mean?

Never mind.

Anyway, one guy had a notepad, some kind of little back-lit clipboard, and a scribbler to hand. Oh, and guess what... are you listening?

All ears, Labas.

Guess what else they had? Both of them... Opposable thumbs, Shitbird. Opposable freakin' thumbs.

I did not wish to enter into a discussion that would surely escalate into an argument about APES. Neither of us knows goddamn thing about apes, so I insisted we not discuss the opposable thumb, but use it, by the side of the fucking road, with a cardboard sign that reads ROTTERDAM CITY, which we had decided by unanimous vote would be “home” for the next couple weeks (Lui knows a place “underground” where we can crash).

Another thing, it was dark, but I coulda sworn I saw a zipper on that sucker. Horizontal, round his crotch

So what?

Think for a minute, Shitbird. Who do you think came up with the zipper? The guys with the backlit clipboard, or the guy with his pants down? What does that tell you?

What it tells me Lui, is that we are sitting here on the outskirts of Frankfurt wasting precious time. When this nut-bread you are chewing on is finished, we will be eating grass, you piss-ant. So stop your bullshit about alien technology.

Look, I'm telling you what I saw.

I was there, don’t you think I would have seen these little green men?

Nope. Beyond your capabilities my friend.

And why the hell is that?

Because you’re colorblind, Aloysius.