The Whales have no choice but to come and slap the waters twice, so that the first time doesn't seem like it were just a FLUKE.



Dear Dry Landers, read on!


The past can be a rotting corpse that is best to bury before it begins to smell bad.


Beauty IS in the eye of the beholder. But HOT is hot.


The pre-diluvial sunshine was lovely to feel gently melting the skin and baking freckles into it. With but a day remaining before Noah's return from vacation, LUTHER MEANS stumbled upon a novel way to begin boarding the human subjects under his ancient watch. THE MAN OF A THOUSAND YEARS, a good friend of Luther's, and one of the 'watchers' who exist outside yet within our time frame, had suggested via meditation waves to Luther that he consult with a one Dr. PERRY COLOSO, the head of pharmacology at the University of Bologna, in Italy. Getting the ZOOATHALON right was an important objective for Means, as he took on nothing that he were not compelled to complete, and with honor and focus attached. That Dr. Coloso were also the President of the University's STATUES AND STAMPS Faculty Club is not germane to this story. Neither his cross dressing past. It were upon consultation with Coloso that Luther came up with the idea of how to board the contentious human contingent of the Ark's journey. It seemed all but impossible to board the humans any other way as of yet, since the factions between them were greatly suspicious of all other tribes. Luther himself, with the help of the usually bickering 800 pound gorilla's (of joke lore), had to step in and quell a probable riot between a tribe identifying themselves from 'Brooklyn', and another, hailing from 'Brookline'. Only narrowly were tensions sorted out. And not being sure of what the future held, these differing peoples felt none too rushed to mingle with other mingy strangers. BUT! Dr. Perry Coloso's grand suggestion, to get the ball rolling as it were, was this: Instead of boarding people by tribe, race, gender, or aversion to homosexuality, BOARD THEM BY MEDICAL CONDITION! And with the ARK offering free and full coverage health care, this was as easy as blowing a whistle and getting people to eagerly line up. On the day of registration, the same people who had the day before crossed eyes and swords at one another, couldn't wait to find out which other person shared the same medical complaint as they. There was a palpable buzz of excitement as Luther began calling out the various conditions and ailments covered by Noah's health plan. Just a day prior, the same two men who were daring the other to make a move, to start something, even a little bit, were now acting as fond old brothers upon learning that they both shared the same lower back condition. Hepatitis sufferers formed a brotherhood. A man from 'Brooklyn' and a woman from 'Brookline' gazed coyly into the near distance of each other when drawn together by their mutual Tourettes syndrome. 
They could now curse one another in bliss. Friendships were established that would last for many years. Boundaries that had once been firmly set, began vanishing. The way a chalk line slides away in a rainstorm. Men who had lumps formed deep bonds. Men who had lumps on their testicles formed even deeper bonds. Men and women with cysts formed a union which would later influence the whole of time thereafter. Men with compulsions were put to work where those compulsions would serve the greater whole. The men and women who loved to fart, were left to work the fields. Though the men with warts were pretty much left alone to their own employment. And with amazing and cooperative speed sped the registration process. Naturally it were decided that the men and women with the most severe anger issues would board first (the passive aggressive's agreed, as long as everyone else was OK with it). Those with bad feet would board next. All in all, THE ZOOATHALON was preceding well along the lines proscribed for it by Noah and Luther. 
At least Luther's part of it. He had also found a way to quiet the dispute between the 800 pound gorilla's. Neither of whom would budge an inch about being the only of it's kind needed aboard the ship. 800 pound gorilla's just didn't do TWO 800 pound gorilla's. Until NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC were invited to film a documentary about the extreme rarity of two 800 pounders in captivity, especially outside their primal habitat of punch lines. Of course, neither wanted the other to be the film's only subject. Also knowing that if just one were used on camera, he would more than likely steal the other's jokes and pass them off as his own. These comics were cutthroat. These funny boys danced on the glass cartilage of extreme pain. The barrel of laughs they juggled were laced with real explosives, and should one fall, BOOM, many, many cupcakes. What made Luther even more secure that the plan would work is that he had signed onto the Zooathalon, the last two remaining BI-POLAR BEARS. Even the 800 pounders, bullies as all hell, lived with a hushed and circumspect regard for the Bi-Polars. This rare breed of Polar bear was none too thrilled to have been discovered by the Noah team, but had thought it best to leave their part of the ice world after the turf war which started when one of the Bi-Polars insulted the head of the polar bear clan for his eating habits and a hit was put out on him. Known for their unpredictability, and for their ability to hold a grudge for a long time even after they forget what the grudge was, they were valued for the order they tended to inspire around them. No one liked pissing them off, you never knew what you'd get. 'Gandhi Bear', or 'Bitter Bear'. Cuddle bear or killer beast. The 'Peacemaker' or the 'Piece-maker'. And as long as people were not sure, they behaved. The Bears had also managed to go to the production company and make sure that they were included in the 800 pound gorilla documentary. The Killer Caterpillar problem was solved by inviting into the ARK, the famed SHOGUN SLUGS. Those mythic creatures known for their ability to defend themselves to the death as well as to levitate small objects if more than 3 of them are together in one space. Known for their espousal of aphorisms that make even less sense the more you think about them (but by which time the slugs are long gone). The Shogun slugs were known for their speed. They were faster than normal slugs, they moved at a snail's pace. But carried a heavier gravity and a tradition dating back to the first emperors of the middle kingdom. Legends say they were taught by the Cricket Lords of China. Like certain large snakes, the shogun slugs can swallow animals as large as pigeons, even as large as hyenas, and hide this under their shell while digesting. Suffice to say, their brainwaves can shift frequencies the way you change a radio dial to another station, and the Killer Caterpillars wanted no part of them, in any way, shape or form. Even the scorpions gave the Shogun slugs a wide berth. Legend has it that if you swallow a shogun slug, IT HAS JUST BEGUN THE PROCESS OF SWALLOWING YOU, though, if you are going to swallow it, it prefers a white wine sauce with garlic and mint. That way, when it begins eating away at your digestive system, your intestines first, it can enjoy what seasoning you have already leant to the meal. It had been mapped out by Luther that boarding the slugs would take place with the help of the rhino's. These rhino's were more than just that in name only, they were generous and had offered to have the slugs placed on their horns, and walk them in that way. This plan discounted the SHOGUN SLUGS and their fierce pride, who insisted that, just like every other creature called to the Zooathalon, they would board as they were. Anyway, why was everyone so worried? They were a faster breed of slugs, weren't they? A compromise was brooked. They would be carried on by the people whose medical profiles favored 'leeching' and 'slimy edibles'. This would also make them easier to Google. As a safety precaution, the shogun slugs did insist that they be kept away from the French and all salad dressings. The stroke of luck that rounded out this portion of the pre-boarding exercise was the decision to include the hyenas in the 800 pound gorilla documentary. With the SHOGUN SLUGS aboard, the hyenas were quite nervous. And a little nervous laughter was a good audience for the jokes and anecdotes which would come zinging out of those two gorilla's as they tried upstaging one another for the title in their minds as the world's most relevant and entertaining massively oversized gorilla and compere.


Luther did have to spend a little of his 'down' time answering to a crowd of protesters. They opposed the invitation to the Zooathalon of the BATTERING RAMS. They were a group calling themselves THE BLEATING HEARTS FOR BATTERED RAMS. These ewes were furious that more attention were not being called to those on whom the battering rams earned their reputation. 
Said one protester, “We must educate the world that for every battering ram, there is a battered ewe or ram walking around with their head down, ashamed”. Luther noticed that the protester did have a pretty nasty black eye. He promised to look into it. Right after he sorted out the mess brewing in his office over whether or not the Zooathalon would be sued for having excluded the lesser known cousins of the laughing hyena's, the BURPING HYENA'S. At least on the bright side, and on the plant side of the ledger, the GLADIOLA'S were glad all over!


Their participation in all of those controversial clinical trials were not all for nought. For their pains, their sponsors used their considerable clout to gain passage aboard the ARK for: THE PERCOSET PENGUINS. There are things which are better left unsaid, and the release forms they had to sign forbade them from even claiming knowledge of there ever having been any trials at all. What trials? Penguins follow trails, not trials. But dark secrets are not always easy to hide and the other gathered penguins wanted to keep their distance, until certain, from these PERCOSET PENGUINS. They weren't just wobbly on their feet, aloof and snobbish, they seemed to also suffer a form of dyslexia which confused penguins with pigeons, so they always ended up in the wrong line or in the village square chasing down the pigeons and doves for their crumbs. The Blue Jays hated them. They also had seizures that were like a horizontal vertigo in a vortex crossed by an updraft from a back draft in a time warp on the last deep bend of a roller coaster ending with you throwing up the popcorn while hitting your head on something hard in a hurricane looking to become a tsunami. This was sure to be one fun ride. Not to mention they only spoke the language of rehab, a language foreign to the other penguins. Who could tell which would be the bumpiest part; the rough high seas to come, or the high tensions of life being managed in all of its splendid, crazy diversity? It's quilt like chaos. It's diaphanous ebb and flow. Surely our woodpecker friend, WOODY, would find empathy for the state of mind THE PERCOSET PENGUINS experience their life through. He would understand that sometimes, in getting through this thing you need a little help. Help in getting through this thing of ours, THE ZOOATHALON. And life through a HAZE, didn't phase much WOODY, these days. He knew the landscape, and how crooked it often lays. He knew that birds fly south, because true north never stays. And that even vultures act out the neuroses of those on whom they prey.


Woody thought to himself, “Why are they drug testing athletes. Shouldn't they be drug testing Wall Street?”


They drew strong admiration. Those particular Battering Rams who stuttered as a consequence of their heads being rammed into stuff so hard and fast that it affected their speech. Whereas others might have succumbed to the pressure of having the STUTTERING RAMS as a recognized group of their own (and thus eligible for federal funds), these rams would have none of it. So they stuttered a little. So their bleating was meant to be one long horn blast and not the short staccato little machine bursts that come from them instead, like a constant echo swallowing and repeating itself. This just made them keep their heads down all the more, and ram into things that much harder. More intensely. There would be no parades or telethons for them, no one to organize them into a party or special interest group. No short yellow buses for their children. And no merchandise to exploit their handicap. They would not be baptized in revenue streams.


Though it ran contrary to captain's Noah's orders, nobody wanted to see the MOLES taking their place with the rest of the Ark brigades. They weren't trusted. One could never be sure whose interest they were willing to represent, and they were notorious for their undermining ways. This would cause the ship's supply team to have to stock up, as per sea faring requirements, on UNDERMINING HELMETS (the kind with all the lamps blown out). Hearing of the trepidation as it concerned their passage aboard the craft, they sent a spokesman to beseech Noah's awareness of their plight. The boss of the moles, 'DON' REINER WEINER, wished to send a message. The moles sent their well known advocate, THE MOLATOLLAH MOLE-TOLA. His words, conveyed directly to an otherwise very busy Luther Means went as such: (Said in a fast nervous twitchy type of voice) “You gotta have us on this ship, or there will be BIG trouble, and I mean BIG trouble. 'Cause you see, we got major sponsorship behind us, the 'family' if you will, and you GOTTA include us. Or things might not go so right for your little sea voyage here, if you know what I mean. If you get my drift. Get it? If you and your little boat buddies get my drift! So you might wanna rethink your whole carnae or there could be carnage. Or a whole lot of driftwood, then you'll be left, drifting. Then you and BEN E. KING will have something in common. You'll both be known as DRIFTERS”. Luther had never encountered a mole so wary of making eye contact, though confident of making threats. Nor had Luther ever encountered a man so amused of one silly overstretched pun, that he would milk it three, four times. The mole had never encountered a man such as Luther, who right in that moment decided that there was no way in hell's waiting room that these Moles were going to make his passenger list. If THIS was what the moles spewed up to represent them, his boat was sure to make better sail without them. And that was the only drift he needed to get. Luther never took a soft heart to threats, and decided that what Noah didn't know wouldn't hurt him. Moleskin Cuban heeled boots always held a strange appeal for Luther Means, and THE MOLATOLLAH MOLE-TOLA looked like a good start on a nice new pair. The ship would come with shoe makers. It was one of the reasons Luther signed on. And if Noah by chance insisted, the moles could always be added to the 'sample' section. The 'library'. Stored DNA. Re-Animated at some later, safer date. Perhaps after even a little time spent tinkering with their matrix and turning them into less weasels.


Naturally, THE WEASELS RESPOND: “Hey, watch that fellow, there's no reason you have to go placing us in direct context with Moles. And in a reference designed for negative comparison and implication. It's intellectually lazy on your part and may even be spiritually corrupt. Now we won't bring lawyers into this. We prefer to bring your attention into this instead. Weasels are good. Weasels wear straw boater hats. Weasels wear bowties. People love weasels, weasels go 'pop'. Moles, as far as we know, do not go 'pop'. Weasels do. Of course weasels also go for jazz, not just 'pop', but we got connected to the 'pop' thing and you know how the market is. We are also quite fond of Barbershop Quartet singing. Maybe it's the boater hats. And a lot of our young weasels are into metal. We find it best to let Moles be who moles be and to let weasels remain in the good spirit of weasel mind. And while we are at it, we also take pains to remind you that we do not all aspire to be lawyers. If you wish to contact us to find out more about what makes us different from moles, visit us at WWW.WEASELWORLD.COM.”


As it pertained to Luther's interest, he had brought along with him his scuba gear. Once out to sea, this time traveller, this shape shifter of the ancient ways, this dragon slayer, this dragon lover, would take a nice warm swim into a swirling tongue of waves. He would then dive and look for mermaids. He knew where most likely to find them. Where the pearl beds are, the mermaids are there to caress them. They speak in strange tones to the oysters of the deep, where giant sea slugs are. Where prehistoric marine life refreshes what lies beyond it, where the chain of life begins. Somersaults are made by things too voluminous to remain still. The pace of life takes on the breath of Neptune and his twisting current of fables. Luther Means had known the love of a mermaid once. A deep love. She made what sacrifices she could, to steal away from the waters. He used his yogic knowledge to sustain what time the waters would host him, before spewing him out as unnatural to her causes. Mermaids loved with an umbilical grace. You merely touched their hands, interlaced fingers, and your whole body sang. Your body rang out like a church bell on a wedding day. One could feast on their assumptions alone. There were men, pirates, willing to die for this. Even Saint John the Baptist had dreams of loving mermaids. Luther would follow the tides, the sea's inner tides. Her tides within tides, and listen for the singing pearls. Those pearls which sing have been sung to by the mermaids and they would tell Luther where to find a school of mermaids, being suckled by their sorority. One did not have sex with mermaids, one loved them. The sex took place in the mind. While the mind took it's place in the underwater coral reefs of Eden in her underwear.


And at that time of the month and moon, the mermaids flirt with God by synchronized swimming, churning the tides, with their tails, into a frothy buttermilk sea.


It were determined by fiat, that with major sponsorship monies behind them, the BATTERING RAMS would wear football helmets. They would also appear in the special ARK EDITION of MADDEN NFL.


…and free for a while, while aboard the ship from having to make their usual BABY deliveries, THE STORKS, were looking forward to settling back and taking up other activities. Stretching themselves a bit. Especially their resident poet, FEDERICO GARCIA 'STORCA'.


and finally THE CRANES, those most elegant of tall water birds, let it be known up front, that they were NOT to be confused with CRANES. Said a spokesbird for the cranes, “Cranes lift heavy things. 'The Cranes' watch heavy things being lifted. You see the difference? We are not moving cranes, just Cranes.”


and last but not least, THE GUINEA PIGS held a press conference to announce that they would be RE-BRANDING themselves, since as it happened, they were neither Guinea's, nor were they pigs. As a result, they reported that they experienced many hours of therapy working through their displacement issues. This was also an issue for them that they claimed made them more susceptible to low self esteem , and more vulnerable and likely to be chosen for clinical trials. Said one, “We feel strongly that we have lost enough of our tribe already to science and beauty products, and re-branding allows us a new psychology while we work to rid ourselves of the old one”. When asked if the Guinea Pigs had an interim name for themselves, one drew a laugh from the assembled journalists by saying that he himself leaned towards 'Scottish Ferrets'.


……a CARILLON is what they call the little musical roundabouts for infants that usually plays tunes above their heads while going around in a circle as they lay in their cribs. You twist a knob, it goes around and the music plays. Maybe 'Rock-A-Bye-Baby'. That having been said……….


…..your family was so cheap, that when you were a baby, your CARILLON was coin-operated.



MILANO 17th JUNE 2010