AUGUST 16 , 2015

 

POLITICAL DEBATE IN THE USA


 

So anyway, the Bay Area got body slammed by a heat wave that shut down just about everything taking place out of doors as temps rocketed into triple digits in the Valley and into the 90's along the coast. Marin phoned in with cancellations saying, "No way dude! Here it is pure misery!"

As Mssr. Soleil drove his flaming chariot higher in the sky, the Island broiled in shimmering waves, a flat griddle surrounded by a hot sea that offered no relief. To the north, the smoky reek from the Lake and Trinity County fires failed to block the sun, turned everything under that pall into a simmering hothouse. Somewhere up there the flicker of burning sought out more things to destroy like a fiery Eye searching from an evil tower.

About as innocent of evil as can be, Bonkers and Wickiwup lay plotzed on the porch, panting, while Johnny Cash ran down to the beach to jump into the tepid water there and shake himself in the manner of the shaggy dog he was. Everyone in the Household save Marlene and Andre had gone in search of shade and whatever breeze there might be at the Cove.

People are saying in the Old Same Place Bar that the El Nino is going to bring on a ferocious tempest of rain and all hell breaking loose. Padraic has opened all the doors and windows and had fans pushing the heavy air around. They all took turns going to the back to fetch things from the walk-in cooler. The AC had died and so between rushes, Suzie put a plastic bag with ice on her head while Angus McMayhem flirted with her. Angus flirted hopefully with everybody that could wear a skirt. Suzie just happened to be in front of him at the time.

"Let's go out back and I'll show you what's in my sporran," Angus said. Some Scotsmen are genteel and subtle. Angus was not one of them.

"Are you crazy? It's too feckin hot to kanoodle!" Suzie said.

Dawn guffawed. "Angus, go stand in the cooler a while."

"I'll go if Suzie goes," Angus said.

"Sure, be right along after I serve this gentleman his Guinness," Suzie said coyly.

Angus followed Dawn to the back and after he entered the walk-in refrigerator Dawn closed and locked the door from the outside.

"Hey!" Angus said. "It's dark in here!"

"There's a lightswitch. Find it and look at your brethren."

Angus found the lightswitch and turned to face the wall where rashers, trotters, and pork ribs hung from hooks. "Dawn, when are ye gonna let me out of here?"

"When you learn yourself to be a gentleman," Dawn said, and turned to go back to the bar where everyone was laughing until the tears ran down.

"O for Pete's sake!" Angus said and sat heavily on an upturned plastic bucket.

"We are needing to get in here to fetch the soda cylinders," Padraic said.

"That's when we let him out," Dawn said.

At the air conditioned parlor for the Native Sons of the Golden West the political debate among the Conservative Party candidates for President of the Rotarian Club was in full swing. The parlor was packed, as every standing member had come to attend, not that they were so concerned about politics, but this hall was one of the few air conditioned rooms on the Island. Also, for some reason, all the members of the Club were contending for just two open positions: President and Eagles Liaison.

Perhaps because of the extensive line-up civility had departed the spirited exchanges.

"I AM THE MOST SUCCESSFUL BUSINESSMAN HERE! I AM THE ONLY ONE WHO KNOWS HOW TO STRAIGHTEN OUT THE FINANCES, KICK OUT THE UNDESIRABLES AND MAKE THIS CLUB GREAT AGAIN!" Shouted Ronald Bump.

"You are overly loud and you don't know noodles!" Said Jack Shrubb. "Furthermore your hair is a danger to the public!"

"LOSER!" Bump shouted. "I AM LEADING IN ALL THE POLLS AND I OWN MY OWN HELICOPTER!"

"I would like to call attention to the misogynist comments made by some of the candidates . . .". Karin Durina began.

"ARE YOU BLEEDING!" Shouted Mr. Bump. " WE CAN'T HAVE A PRESIDENT THAT GOES ALL OTR ON US EVERY MONTH!"

"I would like to say something reasonable," Kit Carson began.

"Ninny!" said Tim "Red" Cross.

"What we need is some Jersey toughness around here," started Dan Danny. "The present Administration clearly does not care about losing the illegals in the Club."

"Ah lose some weight," snarled Mike Wallabee.

"None of y'all gave a rat's ass concern about mah home neighborhood durin' the big flooding a few years back," said Robert Janedoll. "As a community organization we need to see to the Community's welfare."

"Socialist! Socialist!" exclaimed Rand Pete.

"On that subject," said Rick Frothystuf, "I believe that abortion should only be performed in the extreme case of liberal welfare mothers. And the Club should not have to pay for it ever."

Scott Trotter next weighed in with his comments. "Disband all unions. They are bad for the Island."

"The present Administration clearly does not care about Cuba," Marco Polo said. "I believe our official beverage should become the Cuba Libre."

"Fool! You are as bad as Mr. Bump!" Scott Trotter said.

"I AM GIVING OUT ALL YOUR TELEPHONE NUMBERS TO THE HOOKERS ON SAN PABLO!" Mr. Bump shouted.

"Whom you know quite well," Ms. Durina said.

"FAT COW!" Shouted Mr. Bump.

"Oooooo . . . . You imperfect ass!" Ms. Durina stamped her foot so hard her heel broke.

"Jackass!" Lindy Cracker said to Mr. Bump.

The disputation went on well into the night until it descended into a free-for-all brawl that descended even further into savage, atavistic melee which had to be broken up by David Phipps and his father wielding one million volt taser batons.

At the end of the day it was up to Jose and Pahrump to sweep up the shattered glass, toss out the broken chairs and mop the blood off of the floors. George Souvlaki had broken Nick Perrier's nose when the latter had claimed Souvlaki possessed Democrat tendencies and harbored a secret love for poodles. Running out of verbal insults for the first time in his life, Mr. Bump had responded to Randy Peter calling him a sissy by biting the man on the neck hard enough to tear the skin and burst a vein.

This was just the first of three more debates and the Quasi Liberal Party was showing no signs of better behavior for its own series amid the on-going infighting between Bernie Beans, Joe Bidet and Helen Bent.

After the mess had finally been cleaned up the guys leaned on their mops and brooms just like Homer described the warriors leaning on their spears during the siege of Troy. Above the scene of battle the peaceful stars glittered in broad array above the quietly clinking boatmasts in the marina.

"The light of those stars takes so long to reach eyes on the earth that many of those suns had already winked out forever, shrinking into themselves to become either cold stones or the void of black holes", Pahrump said. "By the time the light of our own sun passes the steadily outgoing Voyager to arrive some place where slimy creatures scan the skies, this election, all the ballots, these candidates, and perhaps this Country will have ceased to matter any more than bee pee on cigarette paper".

"You got some perspective, amigo", Jose said. "I think it comes from growin' up on the Piute Rez."

"Piute just means 'not Ute.' Nothing I can do about that," Pahrump said. "Someday you gotta show me that desueno you inherited."

"Why's that?"

"Might be worth something. Says you are supposed to own a whole lotta land up here from your great great grandfather."

"It aint worth a single god damned dime," Jose said. "It's worth about as much as a BIA treaty."

Pahrump tilted his head back and laughed up to the stars who also laughed in their twinkling.

Then came the ululation of the train from far across the water as it trundled from beneath the gantries of the Port of Oaktown with their burning lamps, letting its cry keen across the waves of the estuary, the riprap embankments, the grasses of the Buena Vista flats and the open spaces of the former Beltline, through the cracked brick of the former Cannery with its leaf-scattered loading dock and its weedy railbed and interstices of its chainlink fence, dying slowly away until the locomotive click-clacked in front of the shuttered doors of the Jack London Waterfront, trundling out of shadows on the edge of town past the Ohlone shellmounds to parts unknown.

 

That's the way it is on the Island. Have a great week.

 


 

 

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