Howdy Mist, (Edited Version Available 2020)
Something was wrong when we got to the Tennis Courts….the air was too still, the Moon was too full (actually it was sort of handy when keeping an eye out for Harriet Young). As we pulled in to park we noticed that we had forgot to reset the trip odometer from a gas up a few hours before. Ridicu reached down and pushed the reset button – only Kimmie Lou was still rolling into a spot – SPOINGGGGG ! Now the thing about Ridicu is…he is always doing shit like this, only he completely shuts up when it’s time to do some explaining. “What did you Morons do to my instruments?”
“Em, ah…didn’t realize you were still rolling”….. “Great! So you broke my trip odometer – I suppose every dial is cockeyed with most numbers half showing?” “Well, actually it says 17 7/8, now wadda ya suppose….. The most silent approach we can describe is: pretend you are L’orange, then, without any other information your orange plastic coating starts to crawl – just as every clock in the universe strikes midnight. From our left, up coasts this Peach Convertible Beetle encasing 4 lovely young ladies in tennis whites. I’m trying to figure out if they make Beetle Hybrids and if they do, then why didn’t we at least hear tires rolling when “howdy miss, would you happen to know where an old, fat, balding biker can get in a little doubles action?”
We are just noticing that these gals have beautiful long locks of stunning Chestnut, Raven, Honey and Copper when Chestnut replies “you aren’t fat…you boys are just built for comfort.” As Chestnut speaks she is leaning forward in the passenger seat and turning to look up at us – her right eye is closed and her left has that steadiness needed when lining up rifle sights. A “SWISH” floats right through us as her hair brushes over the Bug’s center console and sways to a stop between what can only be described as electric knees.
That slip again, only this time I’m tumbling….right out of Ridicu’s left ear! I look up at Ridicu as I slide down his forearm…he smiles and shrugs in response to my bewilderment – I’m only 2 inches tall and this shrug has me bouncing up and off his left hand sloping up over Kimmie Lou’s left grip. I’m launched – up through a high arc – all this hang time allows me to survey the situation. There is giggling below and Honey says “maybe you can be our ball boy.” These multi-colored crowns, when viewed from above, look like they have haloes….then I realize it’s just that they have all recently shampooed with molten lava, “RUN!” My yell evaporates 17 7/8 inches out of my mouth. Even if it hadn’t , Ridicu is so entranced, a sledge hammer to his forehead would just bounce right off – I’ve seen that elated goofball look before.
Kimmie Lou heard me though, (Cheerleader Telepathy is acceptable at times like these) she starts right up and is growling at an impossibly low RPM (something around 666). Raven jumps out of the car and plants a bunch of kisses all over Kimmie Lou’s instruments, the last thing I see as I fall into the Peach is Kimmie Lou pop up on her SW Motech Center Stand with another goofy grin. My fatal fall into the passenger floor mat is broken by Chestnut’s hair – I’m all tangled up and hanging just above her feet. The heat from her Crimson Toenail Polish feels good, then she says “hacky sack” and her wisps of hair unfurl till I drop.
These girls are all barefoot and Crimson Toed, I never touch the ground as we make our way onto court 17 7/8. There was this movie I remember once, where this guy becomes a tennis ball and got swatted around for awhile – this wasn’t like that. Copper grabbed me as everyone got in place, I wasn’t served, just pelted right over everyone’s heads into the highest row of chain link. The impression of the racket strings across my face hurt, but not as much as the wire digging into my back – I was basically melted into the fence. LOVE. LOVE. LOVE repeated over and over again, (maybe related to scoring ?) vibrates the fence wire until it becomes an extension of my skeleton – thousands and thousands of feet of wire, encircling these courts, now feel as if they are merely my fingertips.
My attention comes back to the net, or rather all the nets – laying in a pile in front of Ridicu. Honey and Raven are talking to him as Chestnut and Copper begin wrapping him in the first net. ” I have been trying to tell him for years…” Giggling, “shhhh, don’t spoil his surprise,” more laughter – Ridicu’s the loudest. Eventually Ridicu can’t stay standing because about a foot of net is globbed onto him, they lay him down and start rolling him into more and more nets. Clouds thick as pea soup shift over the moon and the soup must have just come out of the fridge cause it suddenly feels around freezing.
I’m rattling and shivering with the cold, but then I notice the rattling is just all the fencing collapsing off the poles. After a couple of dozen spirals of fencing is added to the net, Ridicu and I are face to face….we can’t see each other except we know we are looking right at the other – that familiar teetering before fainting. The layers of material separating us are just enough to keep us from losing conscientiousness “what sort of shit have you gotten us into this time?” “C’mon….are you really telling me you don’t remember these chicks?” A few seconds pass, I can sense he would like to tell me and I know that he would if I asked him directly, but we both know I am not going to…we wait while more and more chain link is wrapped around us.
“Okay boys – just stay nice and relaxed” says Raven. I immediately tense up, Ridicu starts laughing….“Ryder, buddy – this is happening, just let it happen.” I understand resistance is futile, after a few seconds and a few deep breaths I start loosening up. When I tilt my head left, I can see out the top of the chain link burrito, the Peach Beetle has silently drifted down to the courts – it’s top is up and the girls are pulling a long green ribbon from around it’s stem. They start rolling us over the laid out ribbon – it sprouts tiny antlers that hook into the chain link. Very softly comes the thrum.
Our nylon mesh and plastic coated-galvanized fencing cocoon starts to throb – the rhythm kind of gurgles, Ridicu is laughing ….”here comes the peach!” The VW is shrinking or wait….it is draining! The green ribbon coming off the rag top is dilating – the giant peach is pumping into the green artery and it is coming right at us. The weight and tension of the spool has been making it hard to breathe, as everything becomes peach I expect suffocation/drowning by peach will be a nice way to go, I’m oddly peaceful, happy….another dimension, here we come!
Then everything becomes lighter, but tighter at the same time. There is this muscular yet fluid surge and suddenly we are standing up….about 50 feet in the air. Atop each of the 4 surrounding light towers stand the beauties. We make eye contact with each of them, Ridicu and I have gelled back together and now I understand – these are the 4 Peach Pits of our Apocalypse. Their crimson toes begin to glow and they rocket skyward.
Our instinct springs us taller, but before we follow, we arch over Kimmie Lou – she is bathed in our soft light, “it’s OK….go check it out, just come back, Kimmie Lou doesn’t want to break in new Morons!” Kimmie Lou’s words are still hanging in the air and we have caught up to the Peach Pits, all of us are alongside the Moon. The girls smile at us and let a very slight tension out of their wrists, thumbs angle slowly beside thighs – those electric knees start burning blue and we begin to twist as they start spinning around us. In the next few seconds Planets are zipping through our peripheral vision like guard rail posts on the universe’s drag strip.
According to Kimmie Lou, we were gone around 17 7/8 minutes, in that time a Mountain Lion around the size of a Greyhound Bus pounced up beside her. “Howdy Kimmie Lou, I’m Misty.”