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Chronicle of the NonPop Revolution


 
The Essay
Show #238
Oh Woe Is Us
David Gunn

By the time this essay reaches word #666 this afternoon, you and I and everyone within the confines of this mortal continuum will be nine minutes closer to death. The moment each of us is born, millions of little nettling microbes set about trying to end that organic process known as life, repeatedly endeavoring to eradicate one body part or another from the face of the earth and turn each of us, not to mention our beloved pets and domesticated ungulates, into so much inanimate matter. Diseases that were unknown to Science a week ago are gearing up to bring untreatable misery to the new millennium. A US stock market that on the surface seems to have no natural foe is instead poised for fiduciary devastation. Once chipper philosophers now regularly sink into a morass of self-despair, gladdened only when they can think of an analogy for mankind's woeful existence that's even more discouraging than their last. The gloom has even permeated the writings of a weekly humor columnist, who recently said "I wish I could be more cheerful, more cavalier, more positive for you on this day, a fine day in other respects, notwithstanding the horrible weather conditions, but I can't. If you want mindless inspiration and happy chatter, go sniff a furby. No, this is a wake-up call for all of you readers who harbor a hope of someday taking the world by storm. Face it; you won't. Youíll fail just like the rest of us. Like me. My life is so chock full of chaos and personal trauma these days that about the only place in which I havenít failed is by ..." And here his column ended abruptly, when he reportedly checked into a mental institution, whence he has since refused to write a single word. Normally upbeat graduation speeches and positive thinking discourses have been littered with pessimism, cynicism and melancholy. An administration official who spoke at a dedication service for a World War 2 shrine this past Tuesday, Pearl Diver Day, suddenly turned sullen and morose, crumpled up his speech, and walked away from the ceremony. He was later found cowering in the Cow Shed of the Ungulate Center at the Ohio River Zoo, another immense human turkey. In 1997, the mayor of Cincinnati staked his city's fiscal future on raising $550,000 to stock the new Ungulate Center at the Zoo. Not only did his efforts fail, but they also indirectly caused the Mars Polar Lander to go missing.

The trail that leads from southern Ohio to Mars is no less convoluted than the velocity algorithm which kept the lander at a speed limit that produced well-within-tolerance mile-per-gallon numbers. The Center -- affectionately called the Hoof Hotel, since its lodgers would be mammals of the order Hoofius, such as pink elephants and smart cows -- was to be located on zoo property just east of downtown, near the old Lunken Airfield. The land had been acquired in an "Assets for Acres" property swap with Peter Pucker Parsonage, the shadowy investment arm of the Church of the Klondike, an equally suspicious religious tax shelter that had been linked to organized chrome, a factor not elemental to the story. More to the circuitous point, thanks to the 1904 Subsurface Mining Claim Act, the mineral rights to the property belonged to Hydrogen Sneeze, the super secret intelligence arm of NASA. To make a long story thankfully short, once ground had been broken for the Ungulate Center, attorneys for Hydrogen Sneeze swooped down, repossessed the animals that were there for ceremony publicity and, for reasons known only to them, sequestered them aboard the Marscraft, where they eventually caused said space vehicle to exceed landing parameters and go missing.

If that story isn't convoluted enough for you, then stay tuned for this 238th episode of Kalvos & Damian's New Music Bazaar, where your assembled hosts are presently providing a living petri dish for the previously noted microbes, including that walking danger germ smorgasbord also known as Kalvos.