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Chronicle of the NonPop Revolution


 
The Essay
Show #174
Not in the Biblical Sense
David Gunn

There was once a man with popular cheeks of great enormity who lived his entire life in retrograde motion, but verily is this parable about him not; rather concerneth it of an entirely different man, one of modest cheek girthage whose mortal term was spent in the chaotic throes of forward motion. The man -- whose name knoweth I not, though Ned would a bad guess beeth not -- came from a land far away in geographicality if the oddly patterened raiment in which he was clad was any indication. Wrapped was he in a robe of mauve and lichens, with indigenous insect life forming a kind of ambulatory bunting around the hem; thus was he an instant visual curiosity to the citizens whose village he visited. Gatheredeth they around him, the better to knoweth his intent, for if he was of the ilk that selleth wares of neither value nor warranty, they wanted of him nothing.

Waitedeth he until around him were congregated a throng ten deep; then didst the man bow in humblement, produce a hat and wand from the entrails of his robe, tap the hat with the wand, and magically a rabbit out of the hat didst pull. Verily amazed were the crowd, whence a smattering of applause didst unbidden arise. But this was as nothing comparest to what he next doeth. Arrangeth he down upon a table three nutshells; underneath one placeth he a golden coin of much value and desire; then shuffleth he the nutshells about whilst muttering "Round and round she goeeth, where she stops, nobody knoweth," an incantation foreign indeed to the villagers. At last, stoppeth he the transit of the nutshells, and verily tappeth he them with the wand. Pointeth he then to the first of the three nutshells. The crowd, as one, shaketh their head. In like manner doeth he pointeth to the second of the three nutshells, and in like manner doeth the crowd its collective head again shaketh. Then pointeth he to the third of the three nutshells and, amidst great excitement, hath the crowd in agreement noddeth as to the final location of the golden coin. Verily didst the man of modest cheek girthage remove from the table the third nutshell, and lo was the golden coin there not. A great surge of surprise then gusheth forth from the gathered villagers, and lo didst they clappeth with fervor and puckered lips, the better to produce whistles of appreciation, and also presenteth him thus a maiden fair and available.

Bowing in humblement again, he holdeth up his hands so as to lessen the tumult that he might speak. And lo, all was soon silent, except for the quarreling of two harlots who were discussing possession of the rabbit. Paying them no attention, the man, sayeth he, "listen to me, my Sons, though sons not in the Biblical sense, and be attentive to the words which fall from my lips like unseeing camels over the edge of yonder precipice." So saying, didst he to a distant hillock point upon which dromedaries of pleasant disposition grazed; then suddenly and thoroughly didst they pitch over a retaining fence and falleth far and hard onto the vasty fields below. Continueth he then, saying, "let ten people eat of the sea, for grazing amongst the crops doeth they exceedingly poorly. A lesson is here to be learned, but understandeth it I not. Yea, sometime later will lucent water again cover all the lands and the sheep shall be reduced to stock; and lo from a distant urban area with substandard macadam shall there come a prophet bearing hairpieces, and these hairpieces shall thus be distributed to the common men and women who launder the pants of judges, and therefore shall they be blessed with naphtha and kept clear of burrowing rodents, for the son of Naphtha, named Jedd, shall one day look down and bestow halvah on all who have not let his name be ... well, I forget, but at this point it mattereth not. Selah, and thanketh I thee for thou fine maiden."

Yea didst the utterance draw upon their countenances expressions most blank, and didst they their brows scratcheth in puzzlement, for sense to their heads made it none. Then, as didst the man beginneth to gather up his hat and nutshells, from the rear of the gathered crowd didst a boy aged no more than 15 but uncommonly wise in the ways of shenanigansters shout, "Verily looketh thee beneath the other two shells!" The man berobed of mauve and lichens hesitatedeth just a nonce, but long enough for a largely girthed villager to clampeth down his meaty hand over that of Ned before the nutshells couldeth removed be. Another villager turneth over the first of the three nutshells, whence nary a golden coin appeared; in like manner turneth he over the second nutshell, and again didst the golden coin emergeth not. A trice before the crowd realizedeth it had beswindled been didst the robed man scoop up the nutshells and take his French leave, ditching the fair maiden so as not to his abrupt skedaddlement hamper. Verily didst the crowd give chase, but stoppeth they when the bruised and bewildered dromedaries camest they upon. And lo was the confidence man never seen again, although were his exploits heard of whenever village elders gathered at zoning board meetings to partake of the weekly broadcast of Kalvos & Damian's New Music Bazaar, this 174th episode of which is unexpectedly high in confidence, though low in manpower, as the Kalvos portion of the show has invoked his own French leave in order to flambeauically eschew hosting duties. Thus, the remainder of the program will be remanded to ... well, to me.