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Holistically Sunk

Jul. 29, 2010
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I’m Art Kumbalek and man oh manischewitz what a world, ain’a? So listen, not much of an essay on the platter from me to you’s this week seeing as how it’s 10 minutes to deadline and I just now got back into town from being out of town, and by out of town I’m talking some 30-odd miles north of Hayward way up northwest there where me, Little Jimmy Iodine and our buddy Ernie spent a psych-idyllic week and then-some at Ernie’s brother-in-law’s ramshackle cold-water cabin-hut on a lake where the fish weren’t biting but the focking flies sure were. Ba-ding!

It was to be only a week’s holiday but the extra hours-and-hours got logged on account of Ernie accidentally losing his grip on the car keys amidships his morning constitutional—the keys that then plummeted down the long chute of the antediluvian outhouse out back. Numerous rescue attempts were made. A passer-by would’ve thought there were miners trapped down that poop chute instead of a set of keys to a yesteryear rust-bucket Chevy Celebrity with three-hundred and seventy-focking-five thousand miles on her; what with the painstaking valor we demonstrated throughout the retrieval operation, I kid you not.

Unfortunately, all any of the three of us have to show for our recovery project are the advanced symptoms of some kind of E. coli/salmonella/shigellosis combo platter. But I think we may have learned something other than never again to appoint numbnuts Ernie as keeper of the keys: Personal hygiene is everything it’s cracked up to be, I shit you not.

You know, when you go Up North there, you always hear about the deer ticks and the wood ticks and I say big focking deal, ’cause I tell you that the ones that really get under your skin are the goddamn luna-focking-tics you’re vacationing with.

So yeah, the return trip took a little longer than planned since we didn’t figure-in having to walk 10 miles to a pay phone in the Town of Barnes (Population: a couple two, three) to call Ernie’s brother-in-law way down here on East Bottsford Avenue in Cudahy, and then wait on him to come fetch our sorry asses all 362 miles back home.

And a quiet journey it was you betcha, the stone-cold silence interrupted only by the occasional retelling of Northwoods stories, such as:

So this game warden comes across a duck hunter who’s bagged three ducks and decides to “enforce the laws pending.” He collars the hunter, flashes his badge and says, “Looks like you've had a pretty good day. Mind if I inspect your kill?”

The hunter shrugs and hands the ducks to the warden. The warden takes one of the ducks, pokes his finger up the duck's dupa, pulls it out, sniffs it and says, “This here's a Washington state duck. You have a Washington state hunting license?” The hunter pulls out his wallet and calmly shows the warden a Washington state hunting license.

So the warden takes a second duck, pokes the bird up the butt, pulls out his finger, sniffs it and says, “This here's Idaho duck. You have an Idaho state hunting license?” And the hunter hands over an Idaho state hunting license. The warden takes a third duck, proceeds with the finger test and says, “This here's an Oregon state duck. You have an Oregon state hunting license?”

Now the hunter’s pissed. He whips out an Oregon license and says, “Read it and weep, Kojak.” The warden’s a little miffed at having struck out, hands the ducks back to the hunter and says, “You've got all of these licenses here, son. So just where the hell are you from, anyways?”

The hunter drops his pants, bends over, and says, “You're so smart, YOU tell ME!” Ba-ding!

Upon my return, I heard that the City That Always Sweeps has had more than its fill of watery double, double toil and trouble of late. And I had a phone message from my chanteusical muse Robin Pluer, who with her friend Kevin imagine a musical event to be called “Sinkhole de My-Oh,” to benefit those that need benefit in and around that extended neighborhood stretched around E. North and N. Oakland avenues. Cripes, over the years, the fires at Century Hall, Beans & Barley, Elliot’s Bistro, Pizza Man, and now the sinkhole of sinkholes. Time to battle back, ain’a?

And come to think of it, what with all this Republican versus Democrat lying bullshit we’ve got these days, it’s time to take our un-sing-able National Anthem back, what with its “bombs bursting in air” and “rockets’ red glare” bullshit and replace it with something sensible, poetic and goddamn hummable, that being “Hang On To Me” written by those sons of Russian immigrants, George and Ira Gershwin.

Not familiar with it? Then I suggest you come out to O’Donoghue’s Irish Pub on Watertown Plank Road there in Elm Groove where the John Schneider Orchestra performs from 9 p.m.-12 a.m. Friday, July 30. God bless America, ’cause I’m Art Kumbalek and I told you so.


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