Tuesday, June 24, 2008

option a wins

Chapter 4

Bing hesitated. With a shrug and a light step, Bing followed the hippie Marley. Indeed, the confidence that he was shortly to accomplish his Divine mandate overshadowed any nagging misgivings about the eccentric stranger. And eccentric he was!
Marley extended his hand to little Bing and began to weave his way through the tents and rvs. His long hair fascinated the boy. His raiment looked well worn and smelled of earth and camp fire. Marley's voice boomed like a prophet's. And it boomed now as it greeted other bearded figures (Bing didn't always know if they were men or women) along the way.

"Hey, man, what's trippin?"
"Diamond, you've gotta meet my new friend; he'll blow your mind!"
"GROOVY, Billy."
"Prism! I've got someone you need to meet."

And with the last explosion of jargon, Marley swung Bing around to face the much anticipated Prism. By now Bing was beginning to sense the strangeness of his current situation. The scenery was different. These people were different. And all at once he missed his 12 cats. He missed the docile receptivity of his uncle's sheep. He missed his Aunt Constance. This woman was no Aunt Constance.
Prism was indeed a beautiful woman. Every square inch of her person jingled or sparkled. Bing was overcome with the impression that the person in front of him had been rolled in glitter and wind chimes. With long wild red hair and colorful clothing, she rivaled Marley for "loudness." And now she was pumping Bing's hand with vigor and welcoming him to the pad. Bing was fed a sandwich and given a glass of milk. He was called "dear" and "hun" and "small fry." He was offered a beverage that smelled like Uncle Danny's garage. He drank his milk.

"I'm looking for green pastures," Bing began. He looked to Marley's wise face. "You know where they are right?"
"Far out, little man. Far out. You lookin for that too, huh. Prism, what can we say to that?" Marley replied and then was arrested by an expression of deep thought. It seemed to occupy him for some time.
Prism ventured, "Well, hun, that's a big question for someone so young. You've come to the right place if you think the establishment is a drag. This crash pad is yours if you need a place to chill for a while." At this invitation, Marley nodded his assent and added, "Like I said, Bing, welcome to greener pastures."

It was at precisely this moment that Bing began to doubt his calling. He felt his spirits lagging. In his heart he could feel the black trusting eyes of his woolly congregation looking to him for guidance. He had promised them this obedience. He would lie down in green pastures. And yet, he had never anticipated that the angelic heralds of the will of God would answer to Prism and Marley. Without a doubt, green plants abounded in this place. Each carefully tended plot was guarded by an earnest if not somewhat languid personage. Bing had observed several people actually laying down by these small verdant patches, and imagined they too had heard and obeyed. And yet . . . his confidence wavered. Maybe he was wrong. Maybe he should go home.

What happens next?
a. Bing walks back to the highway
b. Bing discovers that Prism makes cherry pie and is instantly convinced to stay
c. Bing converts to Buddhism

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

After these pics we'll be right back

Its been a while since I've posted some pictures, so here we go! We were with family last weekend, which was fantastic. Addison does so well with all the holding and the loving. Some of the pics are from this weekend and some from the last few weeks. When we come back, (a) wins.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

option c wins!

Chapter 3

And when the jostling of the moving vehicle finally ceased, Bing's eyes adjusted to the light of his destination, a hippie commune.
Still taking in the scene before him, Bing was startled by a gruff voice saying, "Well hello, little fella. Welcome to greener pastures." This was all too serendipitous. The young lad's heart swelled with gratitude. His eyes filled with tears. Hot from his long ride and hungry from the journey, Bing had arrived at his destination!
"Hello" replied the boy. "My name is Bing Keefer."
"Marley," the tall man replied and he stretched out a steady hand. "Where are your parents young Bing?"
Bing raised his eyes, now moist with happiness, to the stranger. A patriarch, thought the boy. Just like Aunt Constance's flannel-graph figures. Marley was clothed in coarse material, colorful, simple with an ample beard that descended from his face and neck to his belly button. Surely a man who resembles a flamboyant Moses can be trusted.
"They are dead." Bing answered truthfully.
"Well, that's a shame! You all alone at your age. You will just have to come with Marley. We'll give you some sweet nectar of the earth and fill your belly. You will find that we are all family here. Come on, I know Prism will be delighted to meet you." With this welcome fresh on his lips, Marley turned and motioned for Bing to follow.
A conflict now raged within the lad's chest. He had been taught, along with all the other little boys in the neighborhood to not only disdain the use of matches as play toys but to never absolutely never go with strangers. But Marley looked like Moses, spoke with nearly prophetic clarity of the green pastures long anticipated, and even promised sustenance. This was cruel indeed. Bing hesitated.

a. With a shrug and a light step, Bing followed the hippie Marley.

b. Remembering with sudden clarity the earnest warnings of his Aunt and Uncle, and reasoning that they had never made exceptions for Biblical characters in the flesh, Bing resolutely ran in the opposite direction.

Friday, June 6, 2008

option c

Chapter 2

Bing was 6 * when he came to live with Mr and Mrs Daniel Keefer and the only thing he grew to love more than the dozen saintly cats was . . . playing "melancholy minister" with his uncle's sheep. Danny and Constance often puzzled over the doleful, sometimes macabre tones that Bing chose to employ in the spiritual shepherding of his uncle's flock. Happening upon the congregation one day, Danny overhead the following monologue:

"Open your Bibles please." Bing directed with as deep a voice as he could muster. Bing held a sizable flat rock in his pudgy hands. As he commenced his sermon, Bing directed a drooping gaze at the half a dozen sheep now meditating on the grass at his feet.
"The Lord is my shepherd," he began, "I shall not want. But I don't know why I don't want Him. The Bible says I don't want Him. He makes me lie down in green pastures. Do you like to lie down? I don't. So, sheep, you are just going to have to obey and lie down. I don't think you can pray to the cats. I prayed to the cats like Auntie Constance and it didn't work. So you'll just have to do what it says." A note of pathos in his voice, Bing set aside his Scripture, and solemnly patted each sheep on the head, ending his exhortation with an amen.

Danny was amused and looked for his dear Constance to recount the quaint episode. In so doing, he missed Bing's closing statement entirely.

"Brethren," the little lad's voice became resolute, "I will obey too. I know what happens to bad little boys." This said, Bing pointed his morose face in the direction of town and began to walk. His earnest zeal gave strength to his feet and within a half hour's time he was not only marching up main street, but within sight of the brown van that everyone said could get anything you wanted, anywhere you wanted it to go. Surely the vehicle with UPS on its side would know how to find a place called "green pastures" where one could fulfill one's duty to lie down. And so it was that Bing Keefer found himself in the bowels of the United States postal service, trusting as it were its kind bosom to transport him from his "Ur" to the promised land (though he did not know whither he went). And when the jostling of the moving vehicle finally ceased, Bing's eyes adjusted to the light of his destination, . . .

a. the big city of Cincinnati

b. a giant sign reading, "Hatam Sofer Jewish school for Boys"

c. a hippie commune

*author's edit for plausability

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Choose Your Own Adventure

Here's how it works. Leave a comment if you want to decide where the story is going. The option with the most comments will "win" and decide what happens in the next segment. I've never done this before. It should be fun.

Chapter 1

If not for Danny Keefer's love for medicinal spirits, he may never have married the lovely Constance Gray. You see, physical beauty aside, Constance had the misfortune of being Methodist. Danny was Catholic. And so it was that twenty five years went by before Danny's bottled admiration gave utterance to professions of undying love. Constance would never know how indebted she was to the liquid courage that settled Danny's seasonal cough and loosed his ardent tongue. They were fifty and fifty three when they wed, each with their youth cleanly spent and their respective pews comfortably worn in their respective houses of God. They said their vows in the apple orchard behind Mason's hardware store. They prayed to Jesus and Mary.

Danny and Constance may have found love late, but they wasted no time in sharing it. Within two years they had adopted 12 barn cats, named after the 12 apostles, and been given custody of Danny's great-nephew Bing, the only grandson of his sister Mary. Bing was 4 when he came to live with Mr and Mrs Daniel Keefer and the only thing he grew to love more than the dozen saintly cats was . . .

a. knives

b. eating Aunt Constance's pies

c. playing "melancholy minister" with his uncle's sheep