Cousin Ernie developed a yen for flight early. His dad liked to throw him high in the air and then threaten not catch him, of course his dad did catch him, well most of the time, but these experiences instilled a deep-seated fear in Ernie.
The last time his dad threw him high into the air his instinct for fight or flight overtook him and he took to the skies floating high out beyond the horizon. They found him weeks later across the ocean living in a small village near the Yangtze River. He refused to come home. The natives had taken his great ability to fly as a lucky sign and had made him their leader. He still lives there today tethered to a pole, Stop by for a visit.
“The Guide says there is an art to flying”, said Ford, “or rather a knack. The knack lies in learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss.”
I am a time traveler. I travel in a linear fashion, straight ahead and very slowly but travel I do and so do you…
I know I look young for my age. It must be in my genes or something. That’s how I have been able to pass myself off as a ridiculously youthful and right-on looking middle-aged woman. I have seen a lot of history, hell, I’ve been in a lot of history. Most of it has been untold until now for obvious reasons of International security. The truth has been hidden all these years. Only now has the various governmental agencies given me permission to tell the tale.
Reader discretion is advised:
My career as an insanely popular and charismatic daredevil and Queen of the Segovian Circus started out ordinarily enough. My dog Mr. Fluffy happened to be a speedboat driver for the International trade unionists union in the Segovia province of Spain. He mentioned they needed a show girl for the aquatic circus there. I jumped at the chance to show my moves and show them I did.
I wowed the crowds every Saturday afternoon performing gymnastics and dancing atop a shiny speed boat driven by my faithful dog and now manager Mr. Fluffy. Eventually my fabulous baton twirling, amazing flexibility and obvious flair for fashion garnered me the notice of trade newspapers and famous people all over Europe. I received countless fan letters, tokens of affection and numerous marriage proposals.
I settled for Clive. The lead zookeeper for the circus. Clive seemed mild mannered at first. He lured me in with his fondness for animals and his keen intellect. We lived in a tent by the river. There I make “delicious” vegan meals and pots of strong coffee for him and the animals; a lion and a lamb.
It wasn’t until the lion, who happened to be a double agent for the CIA, asked me for my help that my life took a strange turn.
It turns out that Clive wasn’t really a worker in the circus he too was an agent a secret triple agent, so secret no one knew who he worked for. The lamb bought me a bus ticket for Las Vegas and handed me twenty bucks, get out while you can and don’t come baaaack it said.
I made it to Vegas, a wide eyed country girl with a dream to make it big in Sin City. The lion was waiting for me. He told me he had a job for me with great pay and travel.
If I have learned anything in my long life it is to suspect “the hard sell” especially from a someone from the government dressed up in an animal costume. I bought his jive and before you know it I had been enlisted in the CIA as a super secret inter dimensional and International Spy.
I met with a top scientist. Doctor Zulu. He had just “been released from his duties ” from the Miskationic University and had some “ideas” he was working on and asked if I could “help out”
I reluctantly agreed…
The first few times didn’t go too well.
but before you know it Doctor Zulu had me higher than a kite and tripping the light fantastic!
Somehow the brilliant doctor had figured out a way to send me forward and backward in time using everyday items that can be found in any home or office. And from then on my unbelievable exploits were only covered by comic books under the guise of fiction.
I became the foremost expert in time traveling espionage, spy gamery and tomfoolery. They called me the Mata Hari of time travel. I would have been a celebrity had I not had to keep my identity secret.
I met and interacted in the lives of countless people famous and infamous through many important times and places. Much of it unrecognizable to anyone here on this timeline. But I did make quite an impact.
Now I have retired. Left to fend for myself in an insane world that makes no sense. A world we time travelers have helped create. Imagine the Butterfly effect multiplied by infinity.
Sorry about that. We have formed an alliance, the ones that have remained here. So far its just the lion and I but we hope to recruit followers. We are devoted to setting things straight here. We especially feel bad about this world, this particular timeline, I don’t have to tell you but this is the worst, by far.
Please email me with any strange goings-on or sudden changes to your reality and I will try to send someone out when we can.
What they didn’t say was that Mocha is no ordinary cat, not by any means.
Never have I seen a kitten jump so high, or run so fast. Never have I encountered such a keen intellect in a cat his age. He is only three months old but reads at a sixth grade level.
He is witty and charming but has a bit of a temper. And whatever you do, don’t trust him with your marbles as he is bound to steal them and put them in your shoes for you to discover later.
I don’t know who his mother was exactly. The adoption agency won’t tell me. I have a feeling she was born of noble blood and so was Mocha by the size of his ego and of his bank account. I didn’t know that kittens came with their own stock portfolio’s but apparently this one does. Once we took him home he immediately got on the phone and called his broker and then his accountant. I didn’t know cats had accountants.
I have a feeling that Mocha is money obsessed and it’s not good for him. He is a bit artificial and frankly snobby with the other cats that have come by and welcomed him to the neighborhood.
And he keeps buying things! Like fancy pet furniture and cases of canned Mackerel. I don’t know where to put it all.
He goes down everyday to Starbucks and gets himself the Vente size Java Chip at Starbucks, he loves it there. And they love him! They have named a drink after him, just shows how persuasive he is!
In fact he is paying me to write this fascinating and favorable post about him. Money does talk and since I am temporarily unemployed the money comes in handy. So watch for more stories about his antics. Maybe next time we can find out how he got such a silly name.
Adventures in Mocha
The voodoo priest and all his powders were as nothing compared to espresso, cappuccino, and mocha, which are stronger than all the religions of the world combined, and perhaps stronger than the human soul itself.
The modern mocha is a bittersweet concoction of imperialism, genocide, invention, and consumerism served with whipped cream on top
In the interest of science I am putting together a team of elite experts and chartering an expedition to the jungles of Borneo to seek the all illusive psychedelic toads that are rumored to live there.
A film crew will be documenting the events…
We will be led by Doctor Major Hector Cortez Santa Ana Rodriguez Rodriquez. He is hands down the foremost expert on those trippy toads of legend.
He has sought these elusive toads for over seven years close and believes he is about to hit paydirt.
That is why we hired the film crew and that is why I personally loaned the Doctor Major 50 bucks of my own money for this very important and possibly dangerous scientific event.
The Doctor Major first became interested in the idea of Psychedelic Toads after reading a slender book smuggled to him by a fellow inmate at The Rocky Butte correctional facility in Portland Oregon in 1983. It was entitled Bufo alvarius, the Psychedelic Toad of the Sonoran Desert.
The Dr Major was instantly fascinated. The book explained how to find the toad in dark damp caves, how to extract the venom and how to prepare it for smoking.
The Doctor Major was so fascinated by this idea that he after his release he went immediately to the Sonoran Desert in Arizona where he met two teenage boys at the 7 eleven in Gilbert. They were riding a mule and eating jelly donuts. They told him that the Sonoran toads were “dude, so totally last year” and if he really wanted to find “the real shit” he should go see the Toads of Borneo. Ever the optimist The Dr hopped the first barge to Borneo where he met a man, an old Indian who was drinking in the only decent bar in the town of Putatan near the edge of the jungle. The man was wearing a loincloth and speaking in a language The Doctor Major could not understand but that or because of it the two immediately had an understanding that transcended all words and all logic whatsoever. They decided to join forces and descended into the dark jungle.
There they spent seven grueling years fighting off bouts of malaria and godless heathen tribes who wanted to eat them. They searched deep caves and high into the mountains. The jungles beat the hell out if them but this made the Doctor Major even hungrier for a taste of the toads. The years had not been so kind to the old Indian who had died six years previously but this had gone unnoticed until recently by the Dr Major who had thought the Indian old and lazy and hadn’t noticed he was decomposing.
Obviously the Doctor Major was distraught. That is when he contacted me and told me his story. Of course I was compelled to help.
Together we have raised almost 2,000 dollars through a series of Tupperware parties and by selling The Doctor Major’s high grade marijuana.
The day we put out the ads we were swamped with offers to go along. We have picked what we have deemed the best ones.
The mate is a mighty sailing man, The skipper seems brave and sure. He tells me it will only take three hours to get there, yes–a three hour tour, a three hour tour.
I will be writing an epic novel based on the adventures of the Doctor Major and his brave crew if they are successful and survive the journey.
I, of course reluctantly have to stay behind due to my job as president of Shenanigans University. I will however be hiring an assistant who will be my eyes and ears on the mission. I will be accepting applications all week.
(Hint: I am NOT above bribery)
Please send your resumes (and bribes) to my secretary.
There are aliens inside us…hidden deep inside us…restless ones who move about changing shape and creating quite a stir…subtly effecting us in ways we cannot imagine…slowly taking over our minds…driving us insane…
This is the dramatic version I like to entertain myself with. The one that suggests a nerdy sci-fi thriller mixed with a slick medical docudrama. This may not be too far off. ..
So just what am I jabbering on about you ask?
(Play dramatic music here)
that’s right. Mitochondria.
As we all know from Science class , mitochondria are adorable microscopic rod-shaped organelles. They live inside our cells, they give us our get up and go, our va va va voom and our very breath.
Really far out and groovy scientists hypothesize that millions of years ago a microscopic free-living single-celled organism met up with another larger microscopic free-living single-celled organism and the two dug each other so much they reached some sort of agreement to develop a symbiotic relationship. And so they did; shacking up together like bohemian live-in lovers, one not being able to live without the other, each complimenting each other perfectly. Eventually, the larger organism developed into a cell, the eukaryotic cell to be exact and the smaller organism developed into the mitochondrion we know today. But how much do we know about mitochondria anyway?
Although they live inside us, mitochondrion do not share our DNA, they have their own. They are quite the powerhouses of energy. They can change shape rapidly and are quite restless moving about ours cells almost constantly.
Mitochondria may not be literally the air that we breathe but it is they who convert the oxygen we breathe into energy in a process called aerobic respiration. Without mitochondria higher animals such as you and I and even my cat Mario are not likely to exist…
Ever since I heard of mitochondria and this arrangement made millions of years ago I have been fascinated.
I myself have entered into what most would consider a symbiotic relationships with another human and I don’t have to tell anyone that sometimes these relationships just don’t turn out. Sometimes they end badly and by the time you realize this, it’s already too late and you have been driven insane. It happens all the time. But imagine if you had literally absorbed this partner into your body and now it’s DNA is in your nucleus! How can you undo this? Argument, logic or idle threats cannot separate you. You are stuck with this mistake forever and there’s no amount of clever legalese or high priced lawyers that can save you. OMG! Yikes!!
Really? Can your Mitochondria make you crazy and if I ever do go crazy can I use this as an excuse?
I have been catching up on my technical journals and ran into articles citing evidence that there is a correlation between mutated mitochondrion and mental illness. This is no surprise.
This aspect is what intrigues me about the whole subject. I mean could these little buggers be influencing us on a more subtle level, and if I screw up or do something stupid can I blame them?
Would anyone buy this?
This is what I ponder as I look out the window into the great wide world outside. I watch two crows fly high in the sky which leads to more pondering. Yes, there are times when symbiosis goes horribly wrong but what happens when it goes wonderfully right? Apart from some craziness, are we not the product of a successful symbiosis? I try to imagine a time before the merging of the two single-celled organisms that created life as we know it here on earth. In our narrow human point of view not a lot had happened before this chance meeting. It was a spark that set off a whole heaping helping of a lot, dammit…
…has all of this been good ? That I will ponder another day…
This is a scene from the upcoming musical remake of the Science Fiction classic 2001: A Space Odyssey. It features an all-star all cat cast and is directed by and stars my famous feline Mario. I know what you are thinking: How can a cat direct a movie? I thought that myself at first but when he explained to me that he had attended “directoring school” in one of his previous nine lives and that he was, and I quote, “Golden” I felt he may be onto something. I mean he isn’t famous for nothing.
I had the impression from him that this would be easy but it has been anything but easy. Cats never do what you want them to do, even the so called “professionals”. They are demanding and picky. The cast members would send me out for tuna sandwiches and almost every single time they were dissatisfied with the quality of the fish and would meow mercilessly until I returned to the restaurant and demanded better. Half the delis in town thought I was a nut.
These actor types, what prima donnas…and the director himself you ask? What a hot head. He was driven by some sort of vision but what that vision was, I had no idea.
Mario had no sympathy for me and no time. Whenever I tried to talk any reason with him he would suddenly get up from his easy chair and utter in his heavily accented husky voice: “This conversation can serve no purpose anymore, goodbye” and sashay out.
The power has gone to his head I tell you. ( He’s gone quite mad you know)
Mario would stay up late at night practicing his dance moves and sing old bawdy sailor tunes from his past life as a ship’s cat. My goodness, those songs can get raunchy. The neighbors complained. The police have been out several times due to the loud music and the gang of mewing groupie cats that sit outside on the front lawn at all hours stupefied on what I think was very potent catnip.
Seriously I had my doubts. I mean the whole thing was filmed in our backyard and most of the sets were imaginary. I was never allowed back there during filming. I would go to the side gate and leave the tuna sandwiches. I had no idea…but it just goes to show why my Mario is as famous as he is…
The advance reviews have been “stellar”. I don’t get it, but the critics loved it. I hear it is a “tour de farce” and a “cinematicmeowsterpiece”. I can’t believe it but my cat’s movie will premier at the Canne Film Festival.
It’s just goes to show that you never know and don’t doubt the dreamer until you see the fruition of a dream.
“I’m already crazy. I’m a fearless person. I think it creeps up on you. I don’t think it can be stopped. If my destiny is to lose my mind because of fame, then that’s my destiny. But my passion still means more than anything.” ~Lady Gaga
My famous cat Mario is beside himself. He fears his fame is fleeting and soon he’ll be forgotten. I was shocked. My cat never talks this way; he has been always a positive force, what happened to his great lion-like confidence?
Apparently he’d noticed his page-rankings were down. He had Googled himself multiple times over the past few weeks and had been disappointed by the results. I laughed and cited his numerous accomplishments, awards and medals.
In a light hissy tone he ranted on and on about link analysis algorithms and numerical weighting. He then he spewed out formulas and equations. Honestly I was lost there.
He complained that his new book “Napping for the Sophisticated” hasn’t been selling and that he’s sick of “playing some fool human’s pet in tawdry pet food commercials.”
Mario confided in me that his secret dream is to be the star of his own talk show. He wants to bring back the glamour and as he put it: “The Va va va voom of old downtown Burbank back into late night T.V. just like his idol Johnny Carson. He said he needed to “create a stir online to garner support and create a buzz”.
I offered to write a blog post about him and he laughed at me with disdain for suggesting such a thing. He brought up the fact that my readers are few, a devoted few( thanks guys) but a few nonetheless.
He said we need to hire a production team to make an overly dramatic and wildly expensive but tasteful You tube video about his napping habits. He showed me this pic of him I took last summer. He called it “golden” and asked how could anyone human or cat “resist this cuteness?”
He also wants a publicist “that knows what they’re doing” and a secretary to keep all his projects together for him. He demanded money to pay these “over-priced but well worth it professionals”.
He went so far as to suggest he could pull a wild stunt possibly involving himself and that other cat Spotsy who he calls White Fang in some sort of well-documented and digitally enhanced posturing incident where Mario wins a place atop all the furniture ( yeah right) while The Fang is delegated outside.
In a fit of hysteria he told the tale about the cat down the street who flushed the toilet all day long while his human servants were off “working”. Eventually he become so famous for this one simple act a news crew showed up and filmed him.
“He now has his own pilot coming out this fall on NBC.” Mario wailed in a mournful and pathetic mew.
Like I said, I had never seen Mario like this. My poor loving and faithful friend was reduced to a sad and desperate victim of that bitch goddess, fame.
Follow your bliss Mario, I said in no uncertain terms, he rolled his eyes knowing it was just me quoting Joseph Campbell again. There is a reason I do this. I brought up the fact that his true love is music, which it is and that if he diligently and deliberately pursued this love, all that he desired will come to him. As some of you may or may not know, Mario is a fabulous vocalist. He has the soul of Cat Stevens with all the pizzazz of a young Catty Purry. His lack of confidence holds him back, it’s something we share, that and pure laziness.
Your family loves you and that’s all that really matters Mario, I told him. Fame is supposed to be fleeting, love is not.
We spoke on throughout the afternoon. Mario entertained us with a medley of his favorite show tunes and we twittered away the rest of the day lost in a sweet and legal marijuana haze his musician friends contributed to the packed room of neighborhood cats and trippy neighborhood people. We drank tea and enjoyed the music and that is what it’s all about.
“The world is a wonderfully weird place, consensual reality is significantly flawed, no institution can be trusted, certainty is a mirage, security a delusion, and the tyranny of the dull mind forever threatens — but our lives are not as limited as we think they are, all things are possible, laughter is holier than piety, freedom is sweeter than fame, and in the end it’s love and love alone that really matters.” ~Tom Robbins
(UPDATE: Mario will soon be coming out with a new album. A bluesy reggae pop sound he’s been working on. I’ll keep you all posted)