Ted (merovingian) wrote,


When you wake up to the insistent pulse of unseen drums, you know the day is not going to be boring. When your first waking thought is a dreamy awareness that the drums are spelling out cheap pornography in Morse code, you can be sure you'll be having lunch in a strange place.

My pajamas were charming, and I stayed in them as I tried to track down the thrumming, dot-dashing beat. It took me an hour (including time to stop for coffee) but eventually, there I was, standing in front of a very tall, narrow, four-story townhouse far too gingerbread for this century.

I knocked on the door, which was stupid. Who could hear door-knocking over drums? So I climbed to the second floor and pried open a window, to be courteous.

Instead was a stick figure at a laboratory table. Strapped to his shoulder was a big sign:

Victorian Gentleman-Adventurer

I appreciate this attempt to be an individual as text, and while telling the story I'm sure it'splenty of characterization, but at the time I was just annoyed. Why just a stick-figure? Couldn't this guy afford features?

He looked up at me and probably smiled as he explained himself, "It is a patented procedure, which is a rational extrapolation from universally accepted principles of Science."

You couldn't actually hear the capitalization when he said "Science". But he seemed like the kind of stick figure who wished that you could hear the capitalization, and I don't want to be a rude guest by failing to indulge his suspected wishes.

I didn't ask him to continue, either. He just did it anyway.

"The concept of 'Passion' is a simple one. The principle in question is that extreme emotion is an inherently passive process. We feel tossed about by our limbic system and by a world which we feel a need to control which grows stronger as our ability to control it grows weaker. What is amazing is that this passiveness, this humble helplessness, is desirable. We, as a species, crave to be drowned, to be in awe, to feel as if we may crumble to death. Somehow, this helpless need is not merely pleasant; it is a requirement."

I didn't nod in interest. The stick figure was not in any way holding me enrapt. In fact, I was turning to leave as the stick figure explained the rest.

"The sex drive and the religious experience are experienced in portions of the temporal lobe directly adjacent to one another. This is no coincidence. What we get from each is a desirable sense of worthlessness. A feeling of being so tiny, but which somehow inspires us to be greater. A soaring lowness, if you will indulge me. There is a love which crushes us."

I was climbing back down as I heard his words trail off, "And that is why I have developed my patented..."

The drums ended about five minutes later, while I was on my way to McDonald's for lunch.

Which is strange. I don't go to McDonald's very often at all.
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