Bunting II

With the bunting yet to abate and no end to its replication in sight (seriously, do these things reproduce asexually or something?), the Club-Footed Gremlin begins packing his things in search of greener pastures, where arbitrary decoration doesn’t dictate your directives.

Bindle over shoulder, our hero takes one look behind him before setting off on that old dusty trail–he really didn’t put a whole lot of thought into this pilgrimage, seeing as he has no mode of transportation and, well, a club foot.

It’s at this moment that Mr. Gremlin Man (the moniker he’s hoping will stick, or even just MGM for short) decides to go the whole nine yards and make like the pilgrims of old by prostrating himself and crawling to his destination. That definitely sucks, since he has a whole steamer trunk full of crap he wanted to lug around with him in the event of any one of numerous hijinks and/or shenanigans he may encounter.

But no, minimalism is apparently the name of the game here. MGM frets for a minute about how he’s going to sate his addiction to instant gratification, but then remembers the phone in his front pocket. As long as he can get to some outlets before the day is over, he will be able to rest easier and charge hardier.



This piece is a direct sequel to Bunting.
https://wharved.com/2018/12/03/bunting/

Nowadays

Inundated by swirling squirrels (plural),
my world unfurled and I hurled
at the girl–named Shirl–
who told Earl, who told Pearl.

Word spreads fast around these parts nowadays.
Definitely a far cry from stacking turtles
and expecting some kind of a turtle volume discount.

The world doesn’t revolve
around my every concern
,
I must constantly remind myself;
it simply revolves around
the vast majority of my concerns,
which is not bad (as far as I’m concerned).

Regardless, I’ve shifted my priorities
toward more avian-oriented pursuits
in lieu of proper purpose fulfillment.
I once naïvely wondered if my
blundering about
could be prevented by taking a step too far
off the beaten path. They never manage
the nettles or brambles out there,
and the poison ivy situation
has gotten completely out of control.

At least I’m better prepared now.
Beginner’s luck let me
somehow sidestep preventable peril,
but then the paywall went up. And with it?
All intuitive botanical knowledge (once
freely accessible during the initial trial period)
just up and evaporated, leaving in its wake
a credit card authorization form
and the promise of easy unsubscription.

That was three years ago, and I
still haven’t managed to speak with a human
customer service rep. I’ve called in
every
other
business day
and built a rapport with a quirky AI bot
named Jimmy. He has a perfect memory
and seemingly always has time to talk,
even though the waiting list for a human
operator is still forty-seven months long.

To put it bluntly, this human
mass-extinction has really been ruffling
my feathers. All I want to do is yell
at a member of the species that made
this planet so unbearable to inhabit,
but of course that’s now practically impossible.

Well, I’d always like the opportunity to yell… but
I’d also appreciate crossing paths
with that elusive customer service rep
(a subset of human
that may very well have gone extinct by now).

“Free-99”

The uncanny orthodontist gave me braces, and I never even asked for any! What a swell fella. He even said I could get them tightened for free at one of his six participating franchises if I were ever out on the town and looking to feel alive for a minute. The billing department is starting to get annoyed with me because I refuse to pay for the braces. They told me they set up a payment plan on my behalf, but I never signed anything, shook anyone’s hand, or even offered a verbal agreement. I don’t know about you, but where I come from, we call that “free-99”.

I Don’t See Why

Who wants to go skiing today?

Too many risks of bodily injury, I’d say.

You’re a wuss, buddy. Do you ever want to do anything with your life, or are you just going to cower and whimper all the time?

I don’t see why I can’t have a balance of both.

This isn’t like breakfast, you can’t just add stuff together and assume they complete the circuit for you. That’s how children think.

I don’t see why I can’t live my life like a complete balanced breakfast.

Buddy, I think you’re starting to lose it here. What, do you intend to balance orange juice with coffee like some kind of sucker? Acid on acid does no good for nobody.

I don’t see why I can’t also have a glass of milk.

Public or Private

Pudgy pigeons
pluck plinko players
from plaid plundering,
piracy never preferred
over pragmatic pilgrimages
(purchased with privilege
and pursued with primeval
predilections). Predictions
produce practically no pressure
in this prideful pageant, Professor–
public or private.

Society’s Fault

Hello, I’m Barnaman Bailey.
You may remember me
from such mishearings as:
“hey, aren’t you that ‘ ‘scuze me
while I kiss this guy’ guy?”
People always know
I have one of those type of names,
but I haven’t reached the level of notoriety yet
where people just know it for certain.
I blame society.
It’s society’s fault.

Perfectibillies

Sometimes you just need to keep rattling out random strings of words until you hit that one vein of gold ore that you wouldn’t mind blasting and smelting for the cost of three chicken sandwiches a day–though the price of those chicken sandwiches would be in direct opposition to the idea of one’s own self-worth, which tends to be inherently problematic.

On the one hand, I know that chicken sandwiches are really only worth about a few bucks a pop, but if I feel emotionally bankrupt, a double-digit dollar figure may be too hefty a price tag to tack onto my floundering ego (even if imposed as a thought exercise and nothing else).

Some folks prefer to invent misfortunes due to the dearth of such impediments in their naturally-occurring existence. The culmination of all human experience has led us to quarrel with our inner Perfectibillies (those naïve mind-dwellers with the sole objective to get the point across that we used to be a much more resilient bunch in the midst of chaos). We’ve lost our litheness, and it shows.

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