Wednesday, July 31, 2013


                                                                            A SENSE OF POSSIBILITIES

       Hank awoke with a general feeling of doom... That
sense of impending disaster got worse as he approached 
the ladder.
        Withdrawal from moonshine is more like drug
withdrawal than a mere hangover....Hank knew this.
"Mere hangover?  Did I just say mere hangover?"
                    The man is talking to himself, mumbling,
just the occasional word out loud...He crawls up the
ladder and climbs up into the sunlight.
             He is hit by an extremely bright and intense sun.
He closes his eyes and breathes. It`s going to take
a very long time for Hank to get used to this
midnight sun business.
             He stumbles down the road carefully...
"Slowly make my way to the wharf...see if there`s
a boat there....ha! ha! fat chance!... take it down
river so I can drown myself in the sea....  ... No!
so I can find a town with electricity - make a call
to get a plane - before the quarter-yearly landing."
         " How long before the regular plane comes? 
Ah, yeah, 81 days...And I`ve been here, how long? 
Nine days! Nine days only!... all that time, all the 
craziness happening, getting used to an insane culture. Careful  not to make any sudden moves... Nine days
only!  Then I`m well and truly screwed"
          That feeling of doom returns...
         "This  is backed up with analysis and reason,,,  my thinking is logical. I really am doomed!. it`s not just the hangover talking.," Hank, the former reporter, thinks.
           At the wharf he found it!  No boat!
He walked to the end of the wharf, 
stood up on his tip-toes and 
shouted his name out into the wilderness.... 
        An echo comes back... ... sounding different somehow... a name conditioned (by the wind)... 
purified by the wild.
           "Like the angels will sing at my funeral." 
Hank whispers to himself..... he falls to his knees 
and feels very sorry for himself.

            About 20 minutes later he sees Frank, the 
former mayor, riding some kind of a board downhill...
black smoke puffing out behind him...
              "I know how you`re feeling" the mayor
says when he arrives..."The world
ends now, I`m no good...I`m such a shit! I don`t
deserve anything... etc  etc!"
              " What you need
is the second drink! The first one in the morning -- 
 instant hangover cure. I`m not kidding!"

              Everyone in the Mackenzie River  valley 
drainage basin is certain of this fact...
               One good shot in the morning will cure the    
overproof "Desperation Blues."
                Hank has the drink the mayor offers
him.... moonshine and pineapple juice...In twenty
seconds he feels much better.  He jumps up,
says to Frank: "Where we going?" 
          They both get on the large motorized
skateboard- the Town Bus"  Frank calls it.
And roar up the hill, hanging onto - the
 rein of a horse bolted to the floor of 
the skateboard.
             Frank takes Hank to Artie`s Bar
where  the new shine is on tap. Artie`s a pro.
He`s been working 24 hours a day distilling
the Alcool brought up from Edmonton.  The new
stuff tastes fine just fine, and much stronger than the
original town-bought stuff.
            The whole town`s drinking today.
Even a few people Frank`s never seen before. 
       Frank: "Here I`m thinking the town`s 
population was 16... but those two guys I`ve
never seen before...  How the hell can they
get here without being seen?... or have
they been hiding out all this time,
afraid to show their faces after the last
       Highly unlikely, but not impossible 
in Wait-A-Bit.

Might have to do a census...
Change the numbers on the `Population` sign."
       Someone has stuck up a board that says
Population 646. The 646 is crossed out. Now it
reads 16... It`s standing right in that decimated
flat powdery area where the centre of the Town of
Wait-A-Bit used to be... Some comic has put up 
a population sign right where the bomb
hit - the blast happened.
       Nothing grows there, even now

       Artie asks Hank: "How`s the new hootch? It`s
fabulous! I NEVER want to  leave this place!
I LOVE IT here!"
       Hanks depression is no longer terminal, it`s
entirely gone.

       The mayor stand up and shouts to the l
crowd: "Did we make the right decision voting
 ` Booze, not Electricity`?"
       A big cheer of approval rises in the dugout
bunker bar.. "Yes we did!  Remember who your mayor
is,,, and I`ll be working closely with Matilta."
      Matilda`s sitting on the bar showing her great
legs..."He`s already has been working closely 
with me."
     The gang cheers... Everybody in town knows
exactly what Matilda means by, "Closely."  The
whole town has been working "closely" with her.
That`s why she can be mayor or anything else
she wants... She can be Queen Matilda, if she
     So far Wait-A-Bit is a republic, but everything`s
negotiable in Wait-A-Bit.  Next week it might be
an absolute monarchy - the boys will call it
whatever Matilda wants.   Luckily, she`s
a benevolent dictator.Maybe we should
call it a benevolent dictatorship.
      It doesn`t matter what you call it. So
long as the mayor doesn`t screw up
the annual hooch purchase, he`ll
continue to be mayor. If you don`t
give the people what they want -
call the town whatever you like... 
the mayor will be out on his ear.


That`s as close to public speaking
as Frank has done... and that`s all he ever
wants to do.
       Frank asks Hank: "What do you think?"
       "FUCK ELECTRICITY!"  Hanks says.  He`s on his
third hangover cure now... His depression
 he has forgotten what seems like a long time ago.


          Doom in the EARLY A.M.

        Hank`s up early in the twilight
of the sun that just bare sets these days.
He`s peering down the big river and it is
quite a sight.
       Makes a man feel insignificant, the
mere size and scope of the place... all
that water running north to the
       Hank`s been doing some introspection,
and it`s usually not a good idea to do too
much of this sort of thing in the Artic...
 Soon as you turn your head, something`s
trying to bite your horse.
       You can see why Shetland ponies do well
up here - although I`ve never seen one,
I here that they`re so hairy the insects
can get through to bite the skin --
or is that some kind of a dog
I`m thinking of...
     Before he goes to look at what`s
left of the town`s encyclopasdia... Hank
stand by the screens and listens to the
sound of the crows, maybe ravens - their
eternal cawing call..
      "I`l be the Romans and the  army
from Carthage listened to the same
sounds 2300 years ago, or whatever
the count is," this is Hank`s thought
       Counting loses its significance
up here, same as introspection.
Too much of either activity is a bad
thing here in the Great White North,
you must be ready in the present
at all times...
       Hanks ready all right, boy is
he ready! He`s ready for something
or nothing, whatever comes his
way - even if it`s nothing but
a few ravens cawing across
trhe calm waters here of the 
Mackenzie River.
        "This place is almost
civilized this morning," Hank`s
thinking. " I could get used
to this...."  Soon as he has
this thought Bertie runs by
naked waving a red flag....
closely followed by a big
muscular blonde woman
with large breasts.
       Every time Hank starts
taking himself too seriously,
whenever the sense of DOOM
creeps in too close
to his cerebral cortex, every
time his tendency to worry
closes in on him, something
outrageous happens!
       "I wonder who that
blonde woman is?" Hank`s
thinking, "I`ve never seen
her before...Where do these
people come from ... with a
population of 16, I should 
already know everybody
in this whole berg!"
        With this thought and
with his sense of doom gone
for good today, "I better lie
down and get some sleep. It
looks like noon outside."
        It`s seven thirty in the 
morning, again.
        Hank goes to bed.

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