THE INFORMATION #767 JANUARY 17, 2014

THE INFORMATION
#767 JANUARY 17, 2014
Copyright 2014 FRANCIS DIMENNO
http://dimenno.gather.com
francisdimenno@yahoo.com
https://dimenno.wordpress.com

He who would do good to another must do it in Minute Particulars: general Good is the plea of the scoundrel, hypocrite, and flatterer, for Art and Science cannot exist but in minutely organized Particulars.–William Blake

WHEN THIS WORLD CATCHES FIRE
BOOK THREE: SAVAGE NOXTOWN
CHAPTER EIGHT: PART TWENTY-SIX: THE FALL

If you have an eye for a colorful off-beat story (and even if you do not) you would practically know that one day the Reverend John Otis Cross was peculiarly fated to run across Jim Whitey the turfed out circus clown, who lived on the outskirts of Blowtown over an Oriental grocery with a cigar-smoking pig named Bella. Bella, what they called in those days an arithmetical pig, was very likely more intelligent than her master and was up to performing all kings of cunning stunts. Whitey would bring her to the Seven Stars Tavern only on rare occasions. Whitey had a odd-shaped doughy head as looked more like a giant white beet or rutabaga than a human skull, probably the result of having taken so many knocks about the sawdust ring where he used to ply his trade as vampo clown and general man-of-all-business. On his visits to the bar accompanied by Bella he would wear a garish white stovepipe hat, too small by far for his lumpy head, and a white flannel suit with a black checked pattern which made him resemble a flaccid tablecloth suddenly given the power of speech and locomotion. He wore his red hair sticking out from the side of his head like cotton candy spun from dried snot and he had a penchant for playing cruel practical jokes, and the two of them–he and the furry white pig–who wore a pink tutu–were a sight to behold, particularly once Whitey, as he invariably did, stood the pig upon the bar, balanced Bella on her trotters and bade her do her “Cooch Dance.” The bar-room loafers all grunted their invariable comments:

“Looking good, Whitey.”
“Dances better than my wife.”
“Sure you two ain’t bound in Holy Macaroni?”
“There ought to be a law agin’ it.”
“Sure and I’ll wager that they’re lawfully wed.”
“Pig this good you don’t eat all at once, eh, Whitey?”

And other such chaff.

Whitey would shout, “Dance, my Beauty, Dance! And let the ugliness of the world be effaced by your corybantic antics! Your mythic movements will remain forever embedded upon the eye of the beholder like the memory of first love! They will forget the swinishness of their own ugly faces–the memory of which will be washed away by the mystic smoke of the lake of clarity!”

And the bar-room loafers would respond in kind:

“Pipe down with that garbage!”
“Shove it up your ass, Whitey!”
“You own shit don’t stink–much!”
“Can that breeze!”
“You can teach a pig to dance the hornpipe, but you can’t even pay for your own supper!”
 
In the olden days of Noxtown, such varmints and other rascals as contented themselves with a glass of skull varnish and a warm corner for their evening’s entertainment were, in spite of all their jeering, a sight grateful to Jim Whitey for bringing along his wondrous pig and in general cutting capers and playing the fool. The second part of the pig’s act was a sure-fire crowd-pleaser.  The pig would begin by lifting a foaming schooner to his lips and pretending to drink; Bella would pretend take one taste of the watered down brew and would begin to squeal indignantly out of all proportion to the offense. The bar-room loafers would  roar with laughter at the expense of Tipsy Smith, the suds puller, with the usual smart-aleck comments to be heard, viz:

“The swill in this joint ain’t fit for a pig.”
“Even the swine turn up their nose at it.”
“That hog is a lot smarter than it looks.”
“Bella’s no fool. She knows what a whole lot of nines are–and she’s heard the hooty-owl.”

At which point Jim Whitey would seize an opportunity to make a small profit for providing his modest share of the evening’s amusements. 

“You see before you, Ladies and Gentlemen” (though, naturally, neither were in evidence in such a dive), “none other than the honorific wonderment of the crowned heads of the seven continents and of Kings and Queens the Seven Seas over. From the Hindoo in his ragged garb to the Eskimo in his igloo; from the naked African Pygmy savage with his wooden shield to the Hawaiian Hulu Girls who do the dance without, all marvel at this marvelous animal–wait–do I say animal–no! human! as human as you or I, and a durned sight better-looking–Bella, the prestidigitating, calculating, ruminating, enumerating, and educated pig! You are highly privileged, if I do say so myself, to see an act which has both wowed the crowned rascals of Europe and made sweet the uses of adversity for the hoi polloi! O! Is there anything this wondrous pig cannot do?”

“Take a bath!”
“Eat his own hind leg.”
“Wipe your ass.”
“Get a husband!”
“Kill you and live out the rest of his life a free bird!”

This last comment was greeted with uproar and laughter and gasping howls by the assembled loochers and loafers and yekkmen and yellofs.

Lest the proceedings get out of hand, Jim Whitey wound up his pitch by doing a few elementary card tricks. He covered up the simplicity of these tricks and the blatancy of his signals to the pig by keeping up a steady stream of interminable patter. 

“How many ways are there to shuffle this deck of cards? A question for the ages, and well you might ask, for even as the great mystics and wise and holy men cannot count the grains of sand transported from an eagle’s claws from the top of the mountain to the depths of the shoreline, so this question is a classic example of the question which will consider here: one of infinite possibilities. What are the chances that the learned pig could pull out the black ace in a deck of 52? My gambling friends all know the odds are quite long indeed, for it must be THAT EXACT CARD and no other. Even the sacred Priests of the tribe of Melchizidek would find themselves ‘mazed with wonder at the mere evocation of this feat! This question is a classic example of a branch of prestidigitation known as magical science. There is no use in trying to figure out the dark arts behind such a dark feat–for the Pig simply KNOWS! O, is there anything that this magical, tragical, canonical and cosmological hog cannot do?” 

Only one dour stranger, dressed in a cloak of ministerial black, was silent, but, as though seized by the better impulses of his nature to do the one thing he should not do, he at last spoke.

“My friend,” said the Reverend John Otis Cross, “that poor BEAST…as clever as he mought be…has no immortal SOUL.” 

 
And then a silence…fell. Like snowflake from the bough of a trembling evergreen.

1*SALUTATION
SPIKE JONES
UGGA UGGA BOO UGGA BOO BOO UGGA
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QXwyPCKyTQ0

 
2*REFERENCE
An amazing list of actual reasons for admission into the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum from the late 1800s.
http://imgur.com/r1hCju4
 
5*AVATAR OF THE ZEITGEIST
6* DAILY UTILITY
 
7*CARTOON
 
8*PRESCRIPTION

TOUGH BOOKS FOR EXTREME READERS
http://flavorwire.com/423424/50-incredibly-tough-books-for-extreme-readers/

9*RUMOR PATROL
HARVARD’S GRADING RUBRIC
http://nyti.ms/1ebjADs
10* LAGNIAPPE
11* DEVIATIONS FROM THE PREPARED TEXT: A REVIEW OF OTHER MEDIA
THE NEED TO TELL STORIES
When I hear the words “I have a story to tell you,” that’s when my eyes glaze over.

CONTROVERSIES IN POPULAR CULTURE. 725.
THE ART OF CHARLES RODRIGUES
http://www.societyillustrators.org/Mocca_Exhibit.aspx?id=11046

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