The Icy Beefeater

The Icy Beefeater

I woke up this morning, as usual, in the confines of my igloo. The surrounding tundra was in turmoil. Yep, the Beefeaters were at it, again, but the only question this time: Was this a drill, or the real thing? I strapped bricks to my feet to make sure I’d stick to the surface of the Earth since gravity had been failing of late and I’d seen entire tribes of pygmies and Austrians tumble, lederhosen and all, into the inky blackness of a sun-forsaken (ever since last Wednesday) sky. Stepping forth, barely clearing the top of my noggin of the ceiling of my dwelling’s icy foyer, I gestured to the nearest yeoman and asked politely what his superiors thought they were doing, god damn it, at five o’clock in the morning outside of my house, again, god damn it? And what’s wrong with letting me get a full god-damned night’s sleep for a change? God damn it? Did they have no sense?

He was somewhere in the age range of forty to seventy. His radish red, wind-chapped jowls quivered and he bellowed, “Harumph! No, sir! Pinocchio magnets! ALL OF THEM! Couldn’t harbor the cause of a real boy if he weren’t made out of wood to begin with! I say, they’re just making us march about until our hands turn into giant slabs of slivery meat from the bayonets they make us carry back and forth all morning! His former majesty wouldn’t have let this sort of thing happen, I dare say! Harumph!”

I nodded sympathetically and offered the old lad some ChapStick, which he gladly accepted. Well, I think he was glad. He had worn a constant grimace for, I guess, the last thirty years or so, and all other expressions in the spectrum available to the common countenance had become strangers to his face after all this time. King Baltimore XIV had, after all, been a rather popular monarch, but our current ruler had a strange way of showing affection for his charges (the present baffling situation a prime example of his unorthodox methods). Caligula Bonaparte was, frankly, despised by the populace, but never openly. I looked forward to someday pulling down his plaid-painted statue in the town square that had been an eyesore since its installation, but I guessed that day would not be soon in arriving.

The old Beefeater went back to his duties (drill, not the real thing, it turned out), and I plugged up my ears and wore two pairs of earmuffs to keep out the sound, drifting in and out of slumber for the next three hours or so. Eventually, I woke up again.

For lunch, I had smelt cobbler.

I wrote a poem about barnacles in the afternoon.

I saw a troubadour (superlatively dourly) perform an opera on stilts by himself on the roof of a bombed-out coffeehouse in the evening. He only fell twice.

I went to sleep listening to backwards-masked Nancy Sinatra records that were designed to teach me, subliminally, Swiss etiquette with absolutely no effort on the part of my conscious brain.

So, yeah. Just another day, basically.

[Image shared by The Library of Congress]

About Robert Glen Fogarty

Sometimes I'll take the wrong bus just to get out of the cold for a little while.

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