Friday, April 29, 2005

April 29//Tall Tale I: REAL NEWS

I’m not currently committed to the news in the traditional sense, but since your infinite curiosity awaits, I’ll report that today my stray cat ran away. I found it under the wheels of a car. It was black and white and the exact size of my fist. I can make my fist smaller than ever, now that I cut my nails regularly down to the cushions to play lounge piano at the Tangerinn when I go and the awful disco music is silent. This never happens, more like years ago, when I am told the classification of the patrons was half human, half shell, no one but barnacle-crusted sailors. Providence shines on the place through xeroxes of photocopies of Burroughs, Kerouac, and the captive recapitulative scribblings of Ginsburg on the walls. Seeing as the bartender mixes drinks with the idea a gin martini is too strong a fix, downing gunpowder tea to stay awake till the wee AM, things have changed, a mere five bottles of alcohol back him, one is coffee liqueur.

My cat reminded me of Alaska, because everything does if it can, at the Yukon Bar up at the plank for another Wild Turkey. There on that dark oak was the smallest dog I’d ever seen, smaller than a dram of whiskey. There was music on loud from the stage, so I ambled to the owner and said,

“My, that’s the smallest dog I ever did see,” and he said, without turning to me,

“Damn right it is. This here teacup terrier is the second smallest dog in the world. If you’ve seen a smaller dog you’ve seen the smallest dog in the world, the first smallest being a teacup terrier in Stanfordshire, Great Britain.”

I thought about all the bar dogs I’d ever known and how many of them are a warm color just like whiskey, which is the color of good conversation as one once said, but usually a completely different shape. And then I thought how I wanted to drink that dog while I still had the chance. Thankfully the bartendress came over just then.

That cat was newborn, had no idea of home, and I only had a chance to think that before it was gone. So there I was in the middle of the afternoon street, catless, with the longest nails I’d had in 6 years and thirsty as ever, so I headed to a cafe and ordered a mint tea and a man next to me said “you are thinking too much, you mustn’t do that, for when you think you think about your past and about how sometimes you do somethings for something that doesn’t exist.” But that’s how I got where I am today. With a few exaggerations holding water and a short relationship with a stray cat, I thought about my life as always, though this time it seemed strangely detourless. I sip my tea.


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