Waking Finnegan

“We are such stuff as dreams are made of, and our whole life is rounded with a sleep” ~ Shakespeare

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Location: zurich, Switzerland

Sunday, December 12, 2004

December 12, 2004

In a minimal conference room with what appear to be foreign dignitaries, but have no idea who they are or why they're dignified. The suits look Technicolor bluish-black like Jimmy Stewart's Scotty in Vertigo. A woman is heading the meeting and is wielding a huge rubber mallet that she's using as a gavel--pounding it down on a Chinese butcher block and calling order.

But nobody's talking. I'm there in some sort of journalistic capacity--I'm jimmying around with a video camcorder, but it's one of those pocket-sized ultra-mini models and mounted on a large tripod designed for television cams. The whole cartoonish rig looks like a big man with a little head.

But its live feed of the proceedings is being displayed on a studio monitor next to me and it's in HD. I can't figure out the controls because there are so many. Tiny ones that have odd functions such as 'Jib squelch', 'PT/modify' and 'Save as draft'. I start wondering about the crystalline picture on the monitor and the tiny camera and then look to the date on the little pop-out LCD screen. 'March 18, 2025'. It's my birthday when I'm exactly 70.

I realize I'm wearing the same sort of suit as the others because I'm in the monitor's frame. There's an old black man standing
hunched in rental cop attire at the door. I go over to him slowly and ask what's going on. He leans in and whispers: 'You better watch yourself bro', and don't ask why. Even though you got a camera, they watchin' cause you from the outside.' I start looking at their faces--one of them is Mr Roberts, my P.E. teacher from King Jr. High. But he was fat. This guy has the same face but is fit. Above the shoulders he's old and haggard. He looks at me but doesn't recognize who I am.

Everyone in the room has a blank expression. No one is talking. The woman 'judge', who's also in a suit, is clipping her already perfectly manicured red-polished nails. She reaches down, pulls a small canister out of her handbag, un-screws the small cap and begins pouring something thick, amber and viscose over the fingertips of her right hand. The room immediately smells overpoweringly intense. Everyone pulls out a gasmask from under the table, and the black guy hands me one too and winks. His face had already been covered. The woman isn't wearing a mask. She seems impervious and calmly requests a light. The black guy walks over to her slowly with his Zippo and lights her fingers. She holds them up and yells: 'Lights!'. The room blackens and five flames float in the darkness, with every face now revealing skeleton-like features like starving people. I can see a window in the room, which is now gigantic in the dark. The window is like a clerestory in a church. I can see script done up in stain glass. Can't make it out. Too much smoke from the woman's fingers, which are now consuming her whole hand. She's got on a white lab coat now and wearing gold-framed reading glasses. She tilts her head back and looks at me through them and faces her burning palm at me. I can see one of her eyes through her burning hand--it looks like a surveillance camera.


Blogger Danny Haszard said...

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"Measure wealth not by the things you have, but by the things you have for which you would not take money".Cheers,Danny Haszard Bangor Maine USA

6:40 PM  

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