Throwing stuff at the internet to see what sticks
Tuesday, May 20, 2003 Found Audio
This is what I heard the other night while I was watering the front yard:
“ALL ATHLETES AND SPECTATORS! PLEASE MOVE TO THE CENTER OF THE FIELD FOR THE HOKEY-POKEY.”
No, I hadn’t mistakenly filled my drop-spreader with PCP or accidentally kicked over a wacky mushroom growing on my property. The local high school has a football field and race track a couple of blocks away, right next to the park. Every once in a while we hear what’s going on over there; a football game, or commencement ceremony, or whatever. This fell dead center in the “whatever” category. I went back to watering.
“ONLY EIGHT PEOPLE ARE IN THE CENTER OF THE FIELD. I SEE MANY PEOPLE MOVING IN THE WRONG DIRECTION. ALL ATHLETES AND SPECTATORS PLEASE MOVE TO THE CENTER OF THE FIELD FOR THE HOKEY-POKEY.”
I had to ease up on the spray nozzle to hear properly. I listened for a few more seconds, but no more Hokey-Pokey-related announcements were forthcoming and the nascent blades I’d planted a couple of weeks before were crying out for moisture. I started spraying again, then stopped a minute later.
“IF YOU HAVE MISPLACED A PAIR OF SIZE 7½ TIGERS, COME TO THE ANNOUNCER’S BOOTH TO CLAIM THEM. THEN RETURN TO THE CENTER OF THE FIELD FOR THE HOKEY-POKEY.”
At this point, I probably should have gone into the house to fetch Trash; she might want to hear this. But I figured that by the time I got her outside where she could hear, there’d be nothing to listen to. I figured wrong, as an announcement several minutes later demonstrated:
“WE ARE STILL WAITING FOR ALL ATHLETES AND SPECTATORS TO MOVE TO THE CENTER OF THE FIELD. PLEASE MOVE TO THE CENTER OF THE FIELD NOW AND FORM A CIRCLE FOR THE HOKEY-POKEY.”
Whoever this guy was, he had a microphone and a PA, he was not afraid to use them, and he was not giving up on his Hokey-Pokey. By the way, my backyard looks great now, thanks for asking. I mowed it for the first time this past weekend and it looks like a golf course.
“PLEASE FORM A CIRCLE NOW FOR THE HOKEY-POKEY.”
The front yard, on the other hand, still has some dead spots where I’m waiting for seeds to sprout. I’ve learned that it’s almost easier to restart a lawn from scratch than it is to patch a damaged one. I finished up and coiled the hose next to the house.
“PLEASE FORM A CIRCLE. THAT IS NOT A CIRCLE.”
Okay, I know that, it’s really more like a long, narrow, messy oval whose length is more or less equal to that of the side of my house,, but I’m not going to waste time coiling up my hose all anal-retentive-like when I’m just going to have to pull it out straight again in twelve hours or so. And for the life of me, I can’t think of a way to rephrase that to make it sound not dirty.
“THANK YOU FOR YOUR COOPERATION. PLEASE STAND BY FOR THE HOKEY-POKEY.”
I went inside to fetch Trash for our evening walk around the block. We stepped out to the sidewalk in front of our house, Trash bearing in a direction away from the park.
“YOU PUT YOUR LEFT FOOT IN, YOU PUT YOUR LEFT FOOT OUT…”
I didn’t know she could turn around that fast. She wanted to know what was going on at the athletic field. By the time we arrived, I’d brought her up to speed and the Hokey-Pokey was over by the time we got there, in less time that it had taken to make it happen in the first place.
Trash and I giggled at the mortified high-school track stars slinking onto their buses, avoiding each others’ eyes like frat boys the morning after a long, debauched party with more beer than women. It’s only days away from graduation for the seniors, and we just knew some of them were thinking that they were at a point in their academic careers where they could immolate a litter of kittens in the principal’s office and still expect a diploma, yet some announcer’s-booth General Ripper had debased them so thoroughly.
And what can one say about that, other than the fact that that’s what it’s all about?
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I’m on the panel for this quarter’s Diarist Awards. We’ve gotten the finalists posted. Go check them out and vote for your favorites by the end of this month. And I’m not just saying that because I’m one of the tallyists; if anything, I’d be happy with fewer votes to count. posted by M. Giant 3:49 PM 0 comments