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| There Ain't No Justice |
| #32 |
HELL IS A BANJO
By Black Rose
That was terrible. I never want to die again. I suppose I won't
have to though. It's really only something you go through once, isn't it?
So. I'm supposed to head towards the light, aren't I?
Where's the damned light then? It's dark. Hang on, I see a glimmer.
It's resolving slowly... can't make it out yet. Hang on, it's... beautiful!
I see the face of...
"New arrival are you sir?" she says, in the most pleasant voice I've
ever heard in my, er, life.
I nod dumbly. "Thank you. Here, this will explain everything." She
hands me a small laminated card. "Just place it in that box by the door when
you have completed your re-orienation experience."
She turns to a small boy and goes through the same process with him.
There seems to be a new person materialising every ten seconds or so, and I
figure my chances of asking her a few questions are slim. The small card
marked 'Welcome to Eternity' gets my full attention.
"Welcome to Eternity" it informs me. "You are now 'dead'. In the
next few days, we will be determining your occupation for the rest of time."
I start to wonder who 'we' might be. "Please pay close attention to any
requests made by our staff, as your future direction is a VERY IMPORTANT
DECISION! Right now, you have very little idea of how long you will be here.
In a thousand years you may start to gain a small handle on the concept."
Oh great. Variety may have been the spice of life, but it seems that
monotony is the go here. But then again, it might not be so bad. Just got
to find the right corner to get into. Read on, I think.
"Basic orientation will progress shortly, via a series of
instructional video presentations. You should now take a number from the
dispenser marked 'O.V.P.'. Under NO CIRCUMSTANCES attempt to take a number
from the dispenser marked 'FNORD'!"
Great. Vague hints of menace. Oh joy. I figure that since I have
'eternity' to go before this is over, I'll wander around and take a look
at the place before taking my 'O.V.P.' number.
Crowded place, indeed. There are a LOT of number dispensers around,
so I guess I'll see this place again. Seems like a big central place. Ah!
some guys over there seem to have magazine stands. Good, I could use some
Two stands. One marked 'Moose' and one marked 'TANJ'. The guys
seem to be arguing with each other a lot. The one with the antlers is calling
the bearded guy a 'perverted filth monger' while the beared guy seems mainly
concerned with informing the world at large that the Moose guy is a
plagarist. I THINK they're enjoying themselves.
They don't seem to pay any attention to me, and don't seem to be
after whatever might pass for money around here, so I grab issue #1 of each
and head over to the O.V.P. dispenser, to grab my number.
Number 667. Wonder who was last here? I take a seat on a small
plastic chair and wait.
Well, Moose was funnier, but TANJ is better written. I debate going
over for issue #2 when a buzzer sounds.
"O.V.P. numbers 600-700 please proceed to door 45-JA. Repeat, O.V.P.
numbers 600-700 please proceed to door 45-JA. Thank you."
Door 45-JA is easy to find. It's got a big sign, and it's right next
to door 44-JQ, which seems to have someone screaming "...and they just
PRINTED it! No concern at all!" behind it. I open 45-JA.
I find myself in a large auditorium. Other people are filing in from
OTHER doors. Huh? How many 45-JA's are there? Oh well, I suppose I'm not
in the world I'm used to anymore. I take a seat near the centre and relax.
The people stop coming in, and the place is only one third full. I start
thinking about the place maybe being ALWAYS one third full, no matter how
many people wander in, but that just makes my head hurt.
The lights go down, and a huge screen at the front lights up. The
words 'Orientational Video Presentation' appear in red letters, and are
replaced by 'Written and Directed by David Lynch'.
We see a large room, bordered by red curtains. A spotlight hits the
centre of the black and white patched floor. A tall man wearing a green tie
tells us why salmon migrate. A bottle falls from a table and shatters next
to a small boy's bleeding head. He moans 'Tell me why.' and his eyes close.
Suddenly, it is twenty-five years later, and an ashtray tips over, spreading
its contents over a small placemat marked 'Joe's Emporium'. Three girls
stand side by side and sing 'We'll meet again' before walking off in
different directions. A girl with short blonde hair and a man with dark
hair speak in unison, saying 'My left arm is completely numb.' A mirror
breaks, and the credits roll.
"Well, that explains everything." I say to myself, and realise I am
suddenly alone in the auditorium. I realise that nobody has spoken to me,
besides the receptionist. Curiously, I have no desire to speak to anyone
myself. This would explain the numbness of the left arm in the film.
It's amazing. The connection is so clear! I assume the rest of
the film will fall into place sooner or later, and I stop worrying about it
and head for the door marked 'EXIT'. I open it, and
fall face down for a thousand years passing skeletons embedded in
stone walls the entire cast of star trek the next generation call me an
idiot and i feel hot.
The demon looks down at me. "Can't follow instructions, huh?"
I remember the small laminated card in my hand. I forgot to put
it in the box like I was told to. Shit.
"Welcome to your eternity." says the demon.
He hands me a banjo. I understand the salmon lecture.
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²²²ÛÜ Phoenix Modernz Systems: 908/830-TANJ
±²²²ÛÝ The Syndicate: 908/506-6892
±±²²²ÛÜÜÜ VapourWare BBS: 61/3-429-8510
±±±²²²²²²ÛÜ Yellow Submarine: 404/552-5336
ÛÛ±±±±±±²²²Û Urban Discipline / VaS World HQ : 313/464-1470
ÛÛ±±±±±±²²²Û RipCo ][: 312/528-5020
²²²²Ûß ú ù ³ TANJ Mailing Address ³
²²²²²Ûß þúßÞþßþþÜùþ ³ PO Box 174 ³
±±²²²²ÛÛßßÛßÝÛÛÛÛÛÝÜúþ ³ Seaside Hts, NJ ³
±±±±²²²²²ÛÛÛÛÛÛÛÜþúÝ ù ³ 08751 ³
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