Marlena started talking. To her friends, to people she just met, to her colleagues in the university campus where she worked, to the “stoners’ that sat on the lawn outside the Library of Illiteracy … To Anyone and Everywhere!
Out of the blue, without the influence of drugs or the divine intervention of a bump in the head or a calling from above or below.
It wasn’t a trance and it had none of the bitterness of the • Holly Rollers you‘d come across in the streets of her city, foaming at the mouth for the sake of salvation and the occasional donation –“thank you Ma’am”.
She was more like a child describing a “once in a lifetime” adventure or a toy that no one else had seen before.
She once got up in the middle of a “political science” lecture –appropriately held in the Carl Sagan Auditorium, abandoning her role as ‘projector coordinator” –and started shouting:
“Bullshit! This is all bullshit! They’re putting you on for the sake of profit and you just swallow it whole and gag on their toxins and their lies with a f%@n’ smile on your face! Did you know that in the Planet Allopia of the Neverland Star System … the kids.. the kids are the ones that do all the teaching? Huh? Their parents seek their advice on how to live and how to love. Can you understand that? Can you fathom the green pastures of Planet Water-Lilly where the Colors sing all day and the Cosmic Flowers make love to the Material Bees as they sound the trumpets –all at the same moment –not those of the Apocalypse, no sir … but ones that speak of No War and No Hatred and No Greed and No Vengeance! Can you ever even imagine of Smells that dictate the Motions of the Stars every Dawn of every Second? Did you know that Nixon happened because a Celestial Fart was kept in the Cosmic Bowels for too long? Did you? ”
All this weird talk of “other worlds” sent everyone away from Marlena. Her “normal” parents started parading the offices of the local shrinks. Her “normal” husband –a guy named Norman –ended up in the orifices of her best friend, feeling guilt-free and quite sure of the notion that what happened was that Susan (who was not secretly envious of his relationship with Marlena for years –oh, no!) she … well, they just got caught up in the moment as they both struggled to save their friend from insanity.
Her colleagues avoided her and one day –one blessed day –the Dean of Human Resources and Inhumane Management invited her “for a chat” in the President’s Office. Twenty seven minutes and two cups of coffee latte-r, it was quite obvious to them that she could no longer be active in the businesses of This Fine Establishment. She had to go on vacations, think things over, perhaps see a doctor…
So, she took a couple of months off, never to return. Then the word got around. People would invite her for coffee and tea just to laugh at her. Strangers kept showing up her door, trying to sell her Interstellar Travelling Machines and New and Improved Therapies for the Irrevocably Cured. Some schmuck from the • Urantia Found Nation came to her, thinking that she could be a new recruit, perhaps even a new recruiter.
“Look at your book”, she said, “chapter This, page That. Yes, right there, where your book talks of Perfect Administration and a Perfect Political System and Perfect Justice. Can’t you tell that this is a human contraption? It’s not about how we move freely out there, it’s about the efforts of Your Masters to enslave us Here, right here on Earth.”
Then she started describing her latest visit to the Planets of the Apolitically Inclined and the Star System of the Rotten Starflowers, where the Personas of Politicians and Hollywood Celebrities stem from. She was too weird, even for him and his Organization. So he Left. Out the Right door.
Susan and Norman –having depleted the fire of their escapades –split up. Norman came back to her. He talked of “proper care, perhaps for a few months” and “then getting back together again, back to our lives and our home”.
Marlena laughed. She said to him: “Honey, every day now, for the past year… I‘ve been travelling to the Stars, to places Far Beyond what you call ‘real’. And maybe it’s all in my head, maybe not… but it’s definitely a place more comfortable and more liberating than your embrace or –what used to be –our apartment. You like to think that all there is in this life… is a job, a good pay, a good car, and a good blow job right before breakfast. I know better”.
The divorce papers cited “a Radically Different Sense of Volume”.
But she was not meant to stay alone.
The Cosmic Flowers had stirred up the Celestial Strings for a Purpose. It was no accident.
She first saw his back. He had a t-shirt on and on its back it said:
On the front… on the front it had a picture of a guy that was bare naked, wearing a feather on his head like in a bad “Cowboys and Indians” movie, standing in the middle of a Zoo with its cages wide open and the Animals roaming Free, the figure of some of them having turned into the midnight sky with the Constellations of the Zodiac.
They never discussed sanity or careers or health insurance or any other plans for the future.
They just were.
Προτού αρχίσετε όλοι να φωνάζετε • K-Pax…
… επιτρέψτε μου να σας εξηγήσω πως βρέθηκε το άνωθεν Ιστορικό μεσ’ την κεφάλα μου.
Όνειρο έβλεπα. Έβλεπα αυτήν και τα ταξίδια της, τους κόσμους που επισκεπτόταν, τους απογοητευμένους της φίλους / γονείς / συναδέλφους. Έβλεπα τα Κοσμικά Άνθη να τραγουδάνε την Αρχή κάθε Στιγμής. Άγγιζα τις μυρωδιές τους, άκουγα τα πέταλα τους.
Καθώς μου λέγανε αυτή την ιστορία, μέρος του εγκεφάλου μου λυπόταν που δεν θα μπορούσα να χρησιμοποιήσω τις ατάκες τους –καθότι ήταν σίγουρο πως ταινία «βλέπαμε». Ευτυχώς ξύπνησα.
Τότε ρώτησα τον εαυτό μου: «Ποια ήταν η κοπελιά;»
«Μαρλένα», μου λέω.
Όχι, δεν είναι η Μαρλένα (Marlene Dietrich) του τραγουδιού της Σουζάν Βέγκα.
Επέλεξα όμως για το ρεπερτόριο μουσική (και) από την Βέγκα… όπως επέλεξα να δανειστώ και τα ονόματα «Σούζαν» και «Νόρμαν» από τους στίχους του John Lydon: “Susan and Norman / You're so normal.”
Άγνωσται αι Βουλαί του Πιθήκου!
Ναι, την προηγούμενη νύχτα είχα ξεσκιστεί στις τεκίλες.
Κάποια παιδιά εκεί στο μπαρ έχουν το συνήθειο να με κερνάνε απανωτά.
Νομίζω θέλουν το κακό μου.
Δεν πρόκειται ποτέ όμως να στηρίξω τον ηλίθιο μύθο που θέλει το Αλκοόλ να «υποβοηθά» τη δημιουργικότητα. Πίνουμε για να σταματά ο εγκέφαλος –η τουλάχιστον κάποιο κομμάτια αυτού. Πίνουμε γιατί τα τραγούδια τους πουλάνε τις μπίρες τους, γιατί οι μπίρες τους κρατάνε εμάς σε ανώφελη νιρβάνα και αυτούς σε επικερδή μέθη. Αυτή είναι η αλήθεια. Εμένα και της Μαρλένας.
Labels: Non-Science Fiction, ΞΕΝΙΤΕΊΑ