Mothman: Another Misunderstood Monster

As far as I can tell from all the Mothman stories I’ve read and that one movie I watched, Mothman, although menacing in appearance, was after nothing so substantial as our very souls.

I’ll explain. I read no accounts of disemboweled animals. No eviscerated owls or exsanguinated cattle were ever found that I know of. Simply humans. Frightened horrified humans. And what is one thing that all humans, especially suburbanites in the 50’s, have in common?

They have clothes on. Right? No one that I read about was out for a nude stroll when Mothman confronted them. They were out with their families having completely G-rated (and in the case of the teens that saw him/her/it no more than PG, it was 50’s conservative suburbia, for crying out loud). They were wearing clothes!

Moths eat clothes. Men wear clothes. Mothman was either hungry or ashamed of his nudity. He didn’t want to horrify folks. He wanted to eat their Sunday best. He didn’t want to scare them. He couldn’t help that, by nature, he was scary. He wanted to either eat or wear their clothes and he hesitated. He never killed anyone because he just couldn’t decide which clothes looked tasty and which looked fashionable and I think, deep down, he didn’t want to kill anyone anyway. Otherwise, he would’ve.

Now, about that bridge collapse and the idea that Mothman prophesied it. Perhaps he truly did. But I think, in his innocent monster way, he didn’t show up to warn people about it. I don’t think he truly realized that people were dying. I think he simply thought “CLOTHES BUFFET!” And all the carnage was lost on him because it all had this decadent stagnant water sauce on it and he didn’t even stop to think about the terror that had been wrought on the small community he’d been terrorizing. He was, after all, a monster. A hungry, naked, confused monster.

I bid you adieu…and a don’t.

Adieu…wear clothes, even though it might attract mothman.

A don’t…stroll nude to repel him. The police are much more prevalent than mothmen and much more likely to complicate your life should they find you unclothed in public.

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School Breakfast: Scientific Miracle, Conspiracy, or Simply One Man’s Overactive Imagination?

I think it is worth noting that as I’m writing this, a cup of coffee (Cain’s; black, no sugar and steaming hot) is sitting next to me. I think this is worth noting because it is the first time I’ve ever written anything with a cup of coffee (as perfect as previously described) next to me and it somehow feels right. With that out of the way, let’s proceed:

I went to school with my kids this morning for breakfast. They invite the dads a few times a year for breakfast and guided conversation with their children. I’ve been to several of these but this morning, for some reason, I suddenly realized that it felt like neglect, if not outright abuse.

That last sentence probably begs some explanation. Here goes: We woke up at our usual time but, instead of fixing some pancakes or spreading Nutella on toast we simply watched cartoons and did a little work on the cardboard haunted houses we’ve been building. The kids kept telling me they were hungry and I kept reminding them that we were going to have breakfast together at school. They brushed their teeth, as usual, commenting on how weird it was to brush before breakfast, and we piled into the car. The trip to school was dark and wet and chilly. This morning was a real Halloweeny type of morning here where we live. I didn’t realize it was a fore-shadowing of what was to come. When we arrived at the school we hurried in before we got too rained on or shivered ourselves to death. Once in the cafeteria we lined up and the kids encouraged me to help myself to chocolate milk. I did. I didn’t regret it. We made our way to the end of the line where the trays sat ready to grab with a steaming breakfast (technically that’s exactly what it was; breakfast.) of a single biscuit, a slightly larger in circumference than a half-dollar yet wafer thin sausage patty and a small tub of apple juice. The biscuit looked like it was made of whole wheat flour, so there’s that, but…I hadn’t even fed them and now the school wasn’t feeding them either. We found a place to sit across from some other dads who didn’t have forlorn looks on their faces. They must’ve fed their kids before breakfast.

Maybe my kids eat more than usual. I sat looking at the barely breakfast before us thinking of how my kids usually eat like ravenous pigs in the morning. Two and sometimes three, pieces of toast or pancakes (whichever we’ve made) heavily laden with Nutella followed occasionally by, as my daughter calls them “Canola bars” (although when I call them canola bars she laughs and says “not canola bars, they’re canola bars”). I harassed them to eat it and eat it all so they wouldn’t get too hungry before the end of breakfast. They nibbled at bits and crumbs. My oldest daughter ate three small bites of her sausage patty and, after I’d harassed her sufficiently, tried enough of the biscuit to realize she didn’t like it. My middle child, canola bar girl, didn’t try any of it and got a tub of fruity cheerios, which I didn’t even know existed. My son ate all of his and I was relieved even though he made some sort of weird sausage-upside-down-biscuit by mashing the patty onto the top of the bread. He sat there chomping away with a disturbing ravenous carnivore sneer on his face, oblivious to anything but the dinosaur fantasy I’m sure he was having. I wolfed my own down and was surprised that the taste wasn’t all that unpleasant. I spent the rest of the breakfast ignoring the goings on the administrator initiated such as a video on respect and an opportunity for dads to stand and brag on their kids. I wasn’t disinterested. I was simply worried that their little tummies would be growling before they got to class.

That’s when the idea first crossed my mind that the school gets away with neglect. I understand that it is a parent’s responsibility to feed their children. I wasn’t worried about my own who, even if hungry this morning, wouldn’t have to worry about that tomorrow. But what about the kids whose families can’t afford to feed them and a free school breakfast and lunch are something they look forward to? I know some people have misgivings about the government being involved in welfare and such, but I don’t think kids should suffer hunger simply because their parents can’t afford enough food. I have no problem at all with my tax dollars going to fund free school meals for kids who truly need something to eat. But for crying out loud, I thought, give them something to eat!

As I sat there having these thoughts rather than paying attention to the goings on, I began to realize that I, a full grown man, felt satisfied in my belly. This was nearly three hours ago and I’m still not hungry! Now I’m thinking new thoughts. It seems school lunches are scientifically engineered to swell to the size of your stomach. Maybe my kids really did eat until they were full. Maybe now I should be worried that my son is going to founder rather than starve because he ate just as much as I did and he only has a flat, tiny five year old tummy. I only hope that this isn’t some make-them-feel-full conspiracy. I hope that the little bit of food provided had some disproportionate nutritional value. I hope it wasn’t that we were essentially filling our bellies with cardboard and, though feeling satisfied, were left lacking essential proteins and vitamins and such.

Or, as the title of this post suggests, perhaps my brain was bored and I’ve severely overthought this.

I bid you adieu…and a don’t.

Adieu…spend your time with your children enjoying their company rather than letting your mind race to bizarre and distant places. After all, we spend a large portion of our lives hallucinating in the dark. Why do it in the daylight when you could be enjoying your family?

A don’t…let them eat too many school breakfasts if you can help it. I’m not completely convinced it’s real food. It certainly didn’t behave like real food this morning. But it did taste good.

Let’s Conspire! Here’s a Theory to Get Us Started

I present to you a real cake-taker of an idea. This idea was presented to me as a truth, or at least as a perceived truth. It has some flaws, but my reason for posting it is so that perhaps a dialogue can be started to iron them out.

The theory goes something like this: Hitler was on the verge of creating a gas that would only kill Jews. I already asked the first logical question; “How?” The answer was that the gas isolated some genetic…bit, for lack of a better word…that was specific to Jewish people and then, somehow, killed them with it. Hitler never got to use his gas, as it was still nearing completion near the end of the war.

In case all that wasn’t quite enough, the theory goes on to state that a certain environmentally conscious former Vice President got his hands on the formula, modified it to only kill cows and then procured several crop dusters. He is planning to fly these over every cattle operation in the U.S. so that, with cows extinct, we must all become vegetarians. More questions arise here. So I asked them. First was “If he only kills the cows won’t people just resort to filling their pastures with deer or bison?” Burger lovers like myself could certainly make do with another form of burger as long as it included meat of some sort. Beef is preferable but not necessarily necessary. Second was “Once the people realize what’s going on won’t they simply keep watch and shoot all crop dusters out of the sky?” The first question was never answered, although I assume the answer is he’ll eventually kill all those too. This of course implies that he doesn’t care for the environment at all, as mass extinction is not extremely environmentally friendly. The answer to the second was that it would be so well coordinated that all the ranches would be hit simultaneously.

You’d think that would be enough. It wasn’t. The next stage somehow has the has-been V.P. owning the only car in America and going door to door confiscating every gun in the country. And that, finally, was enough.

Now, there are those out there who wouldn’t stand for such things and there are those who would shrug their shoulders and live on. If you wish to participate in any discussion you should probably decide which side you’ll be on.

I bid you adieu…and a don’t.

Adieu…keep an open mind. Stranger things than this have turned out to be true.

A don’t…judge me for sharing. This is a theory held by at least one person that I know. There may be other believers out there somewhere.

End of the World Prophecies End, The World Survives; A Possible Solution to the Age-old Conundrum

Perhaps you’ve heard the most recent Doomsday report that claims the world will end Saturday. If you haven’t, the end of the world has been predicted for Saturday, September 23, 2017. Get ready.

Or don’t bother. We all know that it won’t happen (not all of us, I guess. Most of us). The Mayans were wrong. Perhaps more fairly put, the people who “interpreted” an ancient calendar with no surviving users were wrong. Nostradamus was wrong, (I’m no expert on Nostradamus but surely he’s prophesied on this) web bots were wrong. Biblical scholars, Jewish scholars and crack-pot prognosticators have all been wrong. It isn’t because they are stupid or uneducated. Perhaps it is simply because the world has already ended and we are already in some sort of after-life.

It’s very simple to throw out theories like this. Rest assured, I have substantial evidence to back my claim.

Let’s consider technology. High-end tech labs continue to churn out products at a pace that is nearly as unbelievable as the products themselves. I heard on the radio the other day about a phone security app that gives access to you only after scanning your face to be sure you are an authorized user. Apparently this even adjusts itself over time so that it continues to recognize you even as your face droops with age. Amazing! Slightly scary. Fraught with bugs? We should know the answer to that in about ten or twenty years. I also heard about a pair of pants that will vibrate one leg or the other to notify you that you need make a turn as you progress toward your destination. That’ll be off the market as soon as someone allows their pants to lead them into the path on an oncoming train. Maybe the pants are smart enough to detect trains. At the very least you could call someone smarty pants and literally be correct. It’s about time. Thank you, techno geeks. But I digress.

The unbelievable nature of these products and the speedy  jumps of technological history could be attributed to the fact that the world has already ended. This would go a long way to explaining why these unrealities are realities. They could simply be mass hallucinations inspired by something in the atmosphere we believe we are breathing in.

If we were already in an after-life setting this would also explain Bigfoot, UFOS, ghosts, ESP and every other new-age idea and supernatural experience. People don’t die, they just leave behind their “body” and become invisible.( Or maybe there’s some after- life after the after-life. I hadn’t considered that until just now.) Some people have really seen Bigfoot. Some people have actually been abducted by aliens. People can really read minds and make the Statue of Liberty disappear and keep their teeth white and do any other unbelievable thing because the science we profess to understand doesn’t apply here like it did before the world ended.

Anyway, just food for thought.

I bid you adieu…and a don’t.

Adieu…think about it.

A don’t…overthink it.

The Aliens’ Conundrum

Bruz Pequine (a very rough approximation of his true name) squirmed into his skin-tight flight suit and zipped it from crotch to clavicle. The zipper faded into the metallic fabric and Bruz made his way to Bay {%} (a very rough approximation of the bay’s true number). Foot traffic in the hallways was light, Bruz’s mission being the only one scheduled this particular cycle. The only other being he encountered on the way to his ship was Braz (rough approximation) his co-pilot. They thought a few general pleasantries in one another’s directions as their paths crossed and continued on to the bay in the comfortable silence familiar to consistent comrades.
Upon reaching the ship (the name of which I dare not even attempt to approximate) they found that they were not first to arrive. Brez (approximately) was waiting at the foot of the ramp and although his slit mouth was incapable of smiling, Bruz and Braz understood Brez to be quite excited. He tilted his bulbous head in their direction and indicated a barely-contained desire to dash up the ramp and into the ship to begin his first mission. Bruz, being the boss, projected thoughts we might roughly equate with rolling one’s eyes at Braz. To Brez he indicated, quite professionally, that entering the ship before the rest of the crew arrived would be most impossible due to the security constrictions on the evening’s endeavor that required the presence one Captain, one Co-pilot, one Scientist/Psychologist and one Trainee before the door at the top of the ramp would open to admit anyone.
So they stood in a silence that was now a little uncomfortable as they awaited the arrival of Briz (the true name of the mission’s Scientist/Psychologist). When the final crew member finally deigned to arrive the four crewmen (sort of) made their way to their duty stations and prepared the ship for departure. Brez stood on the bridge between Bruz and Braz, watching intently until the bay doors opened and the ship swept out into space. Brez’s attention turned to the vast panorama of dark nothing dotted by stars. His mind was overcome with awe, not only at the view but also at the fact that he had lived his whole life in the midst of this without ever having been out to view it. He transmitted these ideas to his crew-mates who responded with polite if slightly cynical generalities to Brez and, privately to one another, more of the thoughts we equate to eye rolling. Brez was quite content staring off into space and he did so until the glow on the horizon began to curve upward before the view port.
He looked at his captain who sent him an affirmative thought and when Brez turned his eyes again to the view port the convex haze had become a blue sphere splotted with green-brown patches topped with intermittent gauzy, white swirls. There were some mild rumblings and a bit of a shimmy as the ship passed into the atmosphere and when these had died down Brez indicated that he’d like to know where on Earth their mission was going to take place. Bruz and Braz conferred privately, excluding Briz who wouldn’t care either way as long as a being soon lay on his exam table, and when they had reached an agreement they sent to Brez images of Las Vegas.

I have taken the liberty of transcribing the following conversations, which were originally transmitted mentally from being to being as visual ideas, into the rough plain English approximations. The conversations are presented as if they had been verbally spoken. This has been done to avoid confusion and so that I can quit typing things like “they sent to one another thoughts equivalent to derision.” Typing such things makes me feel like an idiot.

Brez: “Las Vegas? Why Vegas?”

Bruz: “Trust us! If you’ve never seen the commotion that ensues when we let people see our ships, you’re in for a real treat!”
Brez: “I trust you, of course, but isn’t Vegas rather close to their Area 51?”
Braz: “Yeah, so?”
Brez: “Well, aren’t they used to seeing weird things in the sky?”
Bruz: “The natives would be immune to wondering, perhaps, but previous missions have shown that there are very few natives of Las Vegas. This place is overrun with drunks from out of town. Vegas sightings are the best sightings.”
Brez: “Drunks?”
Bruz: “Does Broz (you get the idea) not teach this anymore? They feed fruit and sugar to certain enzymes and ingest the resulting flatulence. This causes them to become extremely excitable and unpredictable. Drunk, as they call it. It’s what they call a sport. And Vegas is one of their favorite fields for practicing this sport. So we buzz in fairly low and run the radiation shield. When they notice the glow they film it with their poor quality recording devices. They make exclamations of disbelief. They call out to others and soon large crowds amass in the streets causing uproarious disruption to their transit systems. Some fall prostrate. Some cry. The true beauty of our technique becomes apparent the following morning. They usually fail to monitor their intake of the enzyme’s excrements. This causes them to awaken nauseated with aching heads. Their memories are affected. In this state they fail to remember that our vessel did not actually zig and zag and so when they view their recordings the instability of their cameras due to their drunken inability to hold them still is generally regarded as our craft maneuvering in a way that is beyond the capabilities of their aircraft. It contributes to their belief and in turn causes greater hysteria the next time we do our thing.”
Brez: “I suppose it also helps that most of them are from elsewhere. In addition, a metropolis known for the “drinking” must have multiple ways of disposing of those who aren’t careful. Does this draw suspicions away from us when one goes missing?”
Braz: “It certainly does. Perhaps you, Brez, have the necessary mindset to work in this field. Now, let us focus on the mission. As we go in to hover, notice the large congregations on the roadsides.”
Brez: “Um, Gentlemen, surely we have miscalculated our coordinates.”
Bruz: “No, we are in the right place. No other place on Earth has so many such buildings in such proximity. But I see your confusion. There are no beings.”
Briz (arriving on the bridge from the onboard medical facilities where he prefers to spend his time): “No beings? Preposterous! There are currently over six billion of the beings we are most interested in inhabiting the planet.”
Bruz: “He’s right, Briz. I don’t perceive a single one.”
Braz: “Nor do I, now that it’s brought to my attention.”
Brez: “I see one. There, it just darted across that street. It’s in the shadows there by that large receptacle. I don’t perceive it only visually.”
Bruz: “Got it. There’s some interference. Braz, come in a little lower and run the radiation shield. Let’s see how it responds.”
Braz: “It’s approaching! I hardly dared anticipate this. The most frequent response when we approach this close is fear, Brez. Especially when the subject is isolated from other beings. Quickly, let’s get it onboard.”

After much use of technology that I don’t personally understand, the being is brought aboard the ship with Bruz and Braz and Brez and Briz, all of whom were taught by Broz. He is restrained to a gurney sort of table. The following conversation takes place between the being “Bob” and his captors.

Bob: “All that’s left are freaks! All that’s left are freaks! All thats left are freaks!”
Briz: “I beg pardon, but I’ve no idea what you mean.”
Bob: “You’re a freak. They’re freaks. What happened to you guys? Am I the only normal person left?”
Briz: “Again, I don’t understand. It seems you think we are beings such as yourself in a mutated or mutilated state. Is this what you believe?”
Bob: “…yes…”
Bob: “You’re right. That’s silly. I’m sorry. Its just that I haven’t seen anyone for months. How long have you guys been looking for others? How do you keep this chopper fueled? And for crying out loud what happened to your faces?”
Brez: “…um…”
Briz: “Quiet your emissions, novice. Bob, you say you haven’t seen anyone for months?”
Bob: “Yeah.”
Briz: “Why?”
Bob: “Well, I’m starting to think I’m the last person left on the planet.”
Briz: “Preposterous! We would’ve known if something catastrophic enough to wipe out nearly an entire species occured! Return him to his…whatever he was doing. We need to report back immediately!”
Bob: “Return me! No! No! Aww, come on guys! I’m so lonely. Come with me. We’ll scrounge the buffets or crack open the slot machines, it’ll be fun I promise just please don’t leave me alo…”
“…ne!” Bob finished his sentence as the ship whose name none on Earth can pronounce vanished spectacularly into the clouds. “Never seen a chopper do that.” He muttered distractedly as he kicked a ravenous rat from his ankle. He sneezed twice and meandered in the general direction of the nearest buffet, to busy dreaming the daydreams of the lonely and stranded to notice that his watch was curiously out of synch with the watch he’d just stepped on.

I bid you adieu…and a don’t.

Adieu…pray (if you’re a praying person) for Bob.

A don’t…forget to check back for more misadventures with Bob and the aliens who’ve managed to abduct the last living human being.

 

Simians and A Revolutionary Traitor: Co-Conspirators in an Attack on Culinary Sensibility

I’ll try to be short winded again this time. We shall see how it goes.

I’ve developed a partial menu for a horrible restaurant. I wish to pepper these odd selections in amongst more normal fare in the hopes that people will not bother to notice the details of the stranger offerings and will jab a finger at one or the other of my putrid creations without looking too closely.

The first of my macabre dishes is Eggs Benedict Arnold. It is exactly the same as Eggs Benedict with the notable exception of being made with eggs that have turned. If you are unfamiliar with this usage of the word turned I shall educate you. When used in reference to edibles, saying that an ingredient has turned indicates that the product has spoiled. Most certainly using rotten eggs will make quite a traitorous dish. The stench of foul fowl will accost the nostrils most regrettably and the ingestion of turned eggs will cause turning of the stomach and a most boisterous moving of the bowels. As horrible as the dish must taste, the pun is delectable and I delight in thinking of it.

As a dessert I’ll offer Rhesus Pieces. While phonetically this menu item makes one think of candy coated peanut butter, the spelling of the first word indicates a much more sinister treat. I haven’t decided yet if the bits of Rhesus monkey will be cooked. Perhaps I will coat them in colorful candy to further the possibility of at least one piece being eaten.

Now that I think of it I’ll not place these items on my menu. I will instruct my wait staff to offer, only and always, these two selections as specials of the day. In this way the diner has only the words of the server to lean upon. Social convention generally dictates that it is impolite to question what one has heard, although there are of course exceptions to this rule and some will ask for clarification. Others will not be so lucky, and I shall delight in their misery as I’m carted off to jail and my establishment is condemned.

And with that I proclaim “Mission accomplished!” I have succeeded in being fairly short winded. It has left my system and my next post need have no restrictions on word count. I bid you adieu and a don’t.

Adieu…keep an eye out for new restaurants in your area.

A don’t…ever take a servers recommendation if there is any doubt as to whether or not I own the restaurant.

Wrapping Paper: Innocent Tradition or Sinister Conspiracy?

I fear I have but few words to say this time around. Perhaps this is for the best although I wouldn’t trust it. Longwindedness seems to stalk me and what I expect to be a scant few sentences turns into several paragraphs. By way of evidence, I present this introduction. Now to the heart of the matter.

I find that it is very true that the cheaper the product the lesser the quality. This extends even to such fragile things as wrapping paper. Here is a product that must simply be opaque and easily torn. This two-fold design is easily achieved with the application of heavy inks to thin paper, or so I assume, I am not myself a wrapping paper producer or aficionado.

With all that said, I now offer proof that the wrapping paper producers seek to teach us to buy the more expensive product. Would you assume, as I do, that it is cheaper to manufacture an easily ripped paper? Assuming you assume as I do can we not further assume that the more cheaply manufactured paper would be sold more cheaply? And if we assume this we may safely assume that a wrapping paper less prone to tearing would be more expensive (and more nonsensical) to make and therefore cost the consumer more.

Keeping these assumptions in mind I ask that you journey with me to the past. Our destination; my oldest daughter’s fifth birthday party. I wrapped her presents in paper from a dollar store. She opened the presents from other guests with ease, however when she got to mine she was unable to tear the paper. I offered to get it started for her and I had to get the scissors out to do that. The stuff just wouldn’t rip. It was like a fruit snacks package that has been improperly machined and arrives in your house without the standard factory installed easy tear notch in the top corner. It made me angry, although I was careful not to foul my daughter’s party with demonstrations of rage.

Years have passed now and the rage has faded but the lesson has not. That lesson is that money is the root of all evil. I suspect that wrapping paper manufacturers produce the easy to tear paper as well as the kind that could be used to make safety deposit boxes in the same factories. They sell the latter at a cheaper price, enforcing the adage about getting what you pay for. They take some loss, but the practice drives us to buy the more expensive paper so that the gifts we give and receive may be enjoyed.

I’m sure we’ve all seen holiday displays at banks and stores with stacks of “presents” under beautiful trees. We assume they are empty boxes festively wrapped to invoke feelings of contentment and the cheer of the season. I submit to you that in actuality these are not “presents”, rather they are presents. Note the lack of quotations enclosing the final word in the previous sentence. They are forsaken gifts, unopened because someone gave all they had for the perfect token of love and spent their last few cents on a bit of paper to remain in compliance with tradition. After many hours of tugging and scratching, after fingernails have given way to open beds of bloody quick and tears of pain and anguish have been shed, these unopenables were tossed away causing, along with a decision to never buy the cheap stuff again, a need to purchase a new gift. The gift manufacturer then certainly spreads the cheer by offering to the paper maker a small kick back.

Once again I’ve rambled on much longer than expected. I bid you adieu and a don’t.

Adieu…Purchase gifts and paper in separate trips. Use different methods of payment if possible. This should confound their efforts to track the necessity of a kickback.

A don’t…request a gift receipt. My hope is that this will further confound and, fingers crossed, fustigate them as well.