Eclipse Plumage

"hide the food"

TSG jokes that nearly everything is mating display - advertising health, values and resources. Any overt show of wealth, however, is discouraged in this environment of extremely rural law-enforcement. The town aesthetic is frugal theatre, TSG explains, "a plywood and blue-tarp facade." You need only fool the gulls, apparently.

Fine, I'll order tarps.

There's no local police of any kind. The murder of Gene, for example, was investigated by a young officer flown out for a day - no fancy detective. TSG suggests a place needs 500 residents to afford a trained officer full-time. Otherwise the job is so undesirable, he says, that only criminals apply.

In an average year, official statistics include a dozen property and violent crimes, and often one soul reported missing, vanished into the wilderness. At more than double the urban crime-rate, you have a 1 in 20 chance of being included each year.

Last night I had a dream about ice-cream.

I'm seated alone outside a crowded cafe. A guy sets down this ice-cream boat and hands me a plastic spoon. I stare at three bone-white scoops, each molded in the shape of a tiny skull. Then I notice fine head-hairs, and detailed cranial sutures. I pull at the hair in frustrated effort to reveal edible ice-cream, but these are firmly rooted and the skull lifts out. This scoop has visible hammer indentations.

No comments: