Sunday, October 11, 2009

Tings - Anuddah Bahamian Novel

Tings - Anuddah Bahamian Novel

Copyright 2005, drew Roberts

Creative Commons License
Tings - Anuddah Bahamian Novel by drew Roberts is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.

This was previously on ourmedia.org but seems to have gone missing so reposted here and with an up to date BY-SA license.

00. Tings Intro

Caution! Danger!

Tings - Anuddah Bahamian Novel

The End.

But they claim that every ending is a new beginning and so we come to this.

Please note, this is not the end of the beginning or the beginning of the
end, even though it is, in fact, being written in Nassau. I will leave it to
you as to whether Nassau is funky any longer.

Caution! This may end up being a Novel in Name Only. It may, at the end of the day, end up a collection of words only, or even a jumble of words.

Caution! Proceed at your own risk! Read at your own risk! Neither the author nor anyone else to his knowledge makes any warranties of any kind with respect to these words.

Caution! Reading these words may end up being a complete waste of your time. It is unknown as to whether you consider your time to be valuable or not.

Danger! I would tell you that this is The Wrong Novel, but that is another novel that I am already working on. Since that novel is The Wrong Novel, and this novel is not that novel, this cannot be The Wrong Novel. So, although this may not really be a novel at all and although this may end up being a total waste of your time, I must say again: This cannot be The Wrong Novel. Unless you believe in those parallel universe dealiahs.

The duality of my plurality is seeking neutrality and finality.

01. Tings Nov 01

(4:42 am Nov 01, 2005)

Red.

Red, blood red. Redhead, red. Red. The colour of the proud and victorious Lucayans. Red, the same Lucayans whose mascot was the proud and ferocious Simba the Lion. Red, blood red. Victory red.

Red skies at night, sailors delight. Red skies at dawn, sailors be warned. Red. Sunsets. Love.

And so it begins. The quest. The journey that is to be enjoyed, but in reality must be endured during its time and savoured upon its victorious completion.

Bruno found himself in a cold metal cylinder. Rushing through the red dawn skies faster than the wind. Faster than any wind this season, and with the big winds this season, that was saying something. Yes, the big winds this year had been big, and more than that, they had been destructive. Erratic. Almost sly. Pounding coasts into submission. Wiping some clean as a schoolgirl wipes the board clean for her favourite teacher.

The "cabin attendant" came by to attend to the needs of the passengers. After all, what needs did the cabin have that she could attend to? Bruno could still not bring himself to say "cabin attendant" without the quoted fingers deal. He grew up with stewardesses and could deal with stewardess and steward just fine. But, ease up with the "cabin attendant" already. And, to tell the truth, she wasn't actually there to attend to the needs of the passengers so much as to pass out a few tiny bags of peanuts and pour out small cups of soft drinks. In Bruno's case, two bags of peanuts (he was, after all one of the special people, although not in his own estimation) and a Coke.

(5:00 am Nov 01, 2005)

Bruno just touched down on that international runway, that runway in one of his favourite spots in all the world. On the main runway at Nassau International Airport. That runway at Windsor Field. At one time, many would have called at an aerodrome, but these days, to most, it was an airport. Now, it was not that this particular spot on this particular runway was one of Bruno's favourite spots in all the world. No, it was that this runway was in one of his favourite spots in all the world. Nassau. The Bahamas in general as a matter of fact.

Now, you may wonder why Bruno, being a back beat, would like the Bahamas so much. The Bahamas with its junkanoo rhythms, with its rake and scrape, with its island ways. In truth, he did not try to explain it, even to himself. He just liked it. Because of its beats and for many other reasons. One of which was bird peppers and goat peppers and lady fingers. Oh yeah.

Bruno could mash up a conch snack from ounce a dirt or da big bamboo with the best of them and he planned on doing so on many a late night on this trip to the rock. He was, in fact, here as a direct result of his rock longings that had developed during the two months he had been traveling the world as a good will ambassador for live music everywhere and in all its many and varied styles. Rock longings that had developed partly as a result of a conch deficiency in his diet while traveling abroad.

On touchdown, he had felt an immediate sense of rock relief and on deboarding, he had knelt and kissed the tarmac in thanks for it.

After clearing immigration and then customs, nothing to declare but his love, he had jumped in a taxi and told the driver to take him to Native Wind on Bay Street so that he could get himself some stew conch with white rice for breakfast.

(5:20 am Nov 01, 2005)

It seems Bruno had landed in the wrong taxi. The driver was drunk and wanted to carry on a slurred tour of the island as well as taking him to his destination. Bruno tended to have a way about him though. He realized that this might, in fact, be the right taxi and not the wrong taxi after all. This might be the taxi that he would be able to write about in the future, this might be the taxi driver who would provide inspiration for a song, or a fabulous scene in some great novel he might one day write. You never can tell about taxi drivers you know.

(5:25 am Nov 01, 2005)

Conch.

Bruno, as he was often wont to do had gotten ahead of himself again. That, or the cravings for conch were woo strong and he could not control himself.

Conch, that sublime mollusk. Conch, that slime mollusk. Conch, that mollusk that must be de-slimed with sand, salt, and lime to become sublime. Conch, that producer of rare pearls. Pink and radiant. Conch, that white muscle with a foot. Conch, that muscle with a foot. Conch, provider of pistles for young boys and old men to prove their manhood. Slip sliding down dark, muscular tunnels past vocal chords not yet deepened or hotly yearning for those long forgotten days. Long forgotten in the sense that what was remembered was not what had occurred in those days of yore. No, through the cherished retellings, the embellishments had produced memories of days that never occurred and those days that had occurred had long since been forgotten.

By the time Bruno got to breakfast, the driver had filled him in on the night train and on what numbers to buy and box and on which web shops had the best webs for sale. Bruno had asked the driver if he could get all the way to the end of teh intarweb at any of the local web shops, but the driver played it close to his chest on that one. (Perhaps he was not as drunk as he appeared. Perhaps he was a secret agent, or worse yet, a midi assassin.) Bruno paid him the fare with a generous tip just in case and walked into the dispenser of pleasure that was the restaurant, the provider of conch.



(5:43 am Nov 01, 2005)

Turbot.

Turbot, that queen of the sea that is know to those outside the Bahamas as the Queen Trigger fish, but the Bahamians have their own naming conventions with a number of things and the turbot is one of those things. Turbot, that sweet fish, but don't mess with his deaf ears. Skin him if you must. Use his skin as a floor scrubber in hard times. Cut off his fins and slice him along his back bone into two nice fillets. Don't let him bite you though. Catch him at his drops or at his favourite bars if you know what I mean. Catch him steamed or fried at a local restaurant while hanging in the Bahamas.

That's what Jelli was doing when Bruno walked in in search of his stewed muscle.

"Jelli, ma bruddah, what it is? Long time!"

"Bruno? Is dat you? I een seen you in what ten or fifteen years or more? I figure you mussa been duckin me."

"Mabeezo, you break my heart talkin foolishness like dat. How I could be duckin you when you is da one dat is drop outta sight? I een duckin you, you musse is duckin me!"

"Me duckin you? How I could be duckin you when I is been right here all along an you is da world traveler? I een duckin nobody and you know dat!"

"Jelli, don't talk fool. I know you is be duckin ya ma and ya gal from dat time. Anyhow you get anywhere with your resonance thing these last years?"

Jelli stood up all in a rush, knocking over his chair as his cutlery fell noisily to the floor. He ran over to Bruno and began kissing him and crying on his shoulder.

"Jelli, what's this all about?"

"Bruno, you didn't know? Man, I did it. And it was you who helped me do it! It was while we were walking out of the wilderness that time that it happened. Oh man! I never got to tell you did I? I owe you so much! How can I ever thank you enough?"

"Jelli, Jelli, chill man. You're not jellin, know what I mean? And you're causing a scene, know what I mean? People are watching, chill out man."

Jelli pulled himself together and reached for the resonance within. He let out a long breath, slowly. "Cool, I got it. It was just so good to see you after all these years and after all you have meant to me. I have been following you in the papers and lately on the net. You have become quite famous lately. How are things going on the music front?"

"Famous? Are you sure you don't mean infamous?" (Cue sinister music.)

"Then it's true? They are out to get you?"

"Shh. Not so loud. Walls have ears. And if it was only walls I had to watch out for, things would not be so bad. I am not sure who it is these days, but there are still forces afoot to stamp out live music. Powerful, monied interests who want to take the life out of music and box it up and bind it in chains and sell it, or rather rent it out, as a slave to those willing to spend the cash to listen."

"No. How can you live like that? Always having to be on the lookout for sinister agents?"

"It's not easy, Jelli, my friend. It gets hard and lonely at times. But the rewards are there. And every once in a while, I get a glimpse that I might be making progress and that there might be a light at the end of the tunnel. What are you eating?"

"Steamed turbot and grits. It's great, you should get some."

"Nope, I just hit the rock and came straight here for some stewed conch and white rice. Can I join you?"

"Sure, sure. Sit yourself down." Jelli turned and looked at the man behind the counter. "Yo, stew conch an white rice for ma frien here and some johnny cake an annudah cup a tea fa me."

(8:02 am Nov 01, 2005)

Sour Orange.

Doesn't sound too good now does it? Well, it doesn't only if you don't know its secret. To those in the know, it is sweetness itself, even though it is sour.

It's not a lime, it's not a lemon, it's not an orange per se. No, it is a sour orange, beloved of Bahamians for use in conch salad and scorch conch. For use on fish, for making swicha, anecdotally in tin cans. Nothing better.

Jelli always brought his own when coming to da wind because, as good as they were, they only tended to keep limes or lemons on hand and he liked sour orange mixed with lime on his fish. He offered some to Bruno when the lady set his bowl of stew conch before him.

Bruno accepted and squeezed some over the conch and mashed up a bird pepper that Jelli set before him as well. "Jelli, mabeezo, you sure know how to do it right."

The two old friends sat and ate their breakfast and enjoyed every minute of each other's company and of their own food. They sat around for a few hours after finishing and talked old times and caught up on things and lives and dreams.

Jelli finally said that he needed to be going and wrote his number on the back of a card and also his google talk info. "Dude, let's play catch up before you leave this time."

"Yeah, we ga play catch up, an if not, mustard. Check ya later."

Bruno smiled as Jelli walked out of the door.

(8:19 am Nov 01, 2005)

Bruno got up and paid his cheque at the counter and put a nice tip in the jar and unwrapped the mint that came with his change and put it in his mouth. He walked out the door and headed east towards the Paradise Island Bridges.

(5:30 pm Nov 01, 2005)

What a day! Bruno had bypassed the new bridge and had taken the old bridge over to P.I. After reaching the island, he had continued north and taken the path out to the beach. Before going down on the beach proper, he sat for a while in the shade of the casuarinas. There was a little nip in the air and the water was far from smooth. There were some swimmers though and the sun was out so, after watching for a while, he went down dune from the needles onto the sand and secured himself a little temporary real estate.
Well, things stayed calm enough for awhile but then, oh brother. This girl came speeding by on a jet ski about fifty yards offshore. Bruno watched her, the sunlight was dancin' off her hair, her long blond hair, blowing in the wind. Did I mention that the sunlight was dancin' off her hair? Did I mention that her long legs were tanned and brown? No? Well I should have because they were and they kept Bruno captivated for long, slow moments. Time had a way of playing with Bruno. It was how he had met Jelli, in fact.

Well, as he sat mesmerized by the yards and yards of skin, the jet ski hit a swell and went airborne. It didn't land well. In fact, it landed really badly. It entered the face of another swell and went under. It did not come up. Nor did its rider.

Bruno was in the water in a flash, swimming out with a strong, sure rhythm. When he got to the spot where he estimated the ski had gone in for the last time, he jackknifed and went down looking around as he went. She was next to the ski on the bottom, her long blond hair waving in the current like the mermaids at Weeki Wachee. He swam down and grabbed her and planted his feet on the bottom and, giving a strong push with his legs, headed for the surface with her in tow. Once on the surface he towed he in to the beach and revived her.

Well, she coughed up some water, looked him in the eye and slapped him. About the same time, the jet ski operator came up and started rowing him out talking some foolishness about him causing the jet ski to wreck and he tried to punch Bruno as well. Now, to Bruno's mind, it was one thing to let a pretty girl who had just almost drowned slap him and another completely to let some joker punch his lights out for no reason. So he did what he usually did in these situations, he ducked, then he sprang up and did a flip with a half twist and landed behind the aggressive operator and clamped on a little sleeper hold while locking his legs around his antagonist's waist. It wasn't long before the operator saw the light. Then again, perhaps it was the darkness he saw. Bruno had had enough and gathered up his stuff and walked over to a little place on the point by hurricane hole and secured a table and a drink and had spent the rest of the afternoon sipping and writing.

Time passed slowly and Bruno watched the people, the birds and the boats pass by. He watched the current pass by as well. He ordered another drink and a chicken caesar wrap. He wrote some more. This nano thing could be somewhat addicting. He went on line with a little wifi mojo and updated his word count and passed some time in the "Games, Diversions, and Other Exciting Forms of Novel Procrastination" forum, specifically, the "Song (Question and Answer) Game" and a few others.

(7:06 pm Nov 01, 2005)

He checked out slashdot and then fired up his irc client (xchat) and went into the bslug channel on freenode. A few of the lug members were in the channel tonight and he talked a bit with one or two of them about his novel and his musical ideas. They had the beginnings of a discussion on the interrelation of live music, Free Software, Creative Commons BY-SA music, lyrics, and other writings and art.

Bruno felt that there may be some synergies to be had in the fusing of his various interests and wanted to pursue these discussions further but know that November would be crowded due to the nano blocks in his days.

02. Tings Nov 02

(5:50 am Nov 02, 2005)

Moke.

Ah yes, the moke or the mini moke. What a fun vehicle for a young man to play in. To drive with the top down. To drive like a desert rat in a world war ii jeep.

Cangman was driving moke at the moment. Driving west on Cow Pen Road. Driving at speed. Daydreaming of Miami Vice his land hermit crab from his childhood. Daydreaming even thought the sun had not yet really done a whole lot to get the day started. Around here, they apparently called land hermit crabs soldier crabs. Cang liked that. Miami had been a regular little soldier when they first met, that is for sure. Not like those wussy crabs his friends had bought through mail order. Those wussy crabs that had come in day glo fuzzy shells. Those wussy crabs had never beaten Miami in a race, even after his friends had helped them move into better homes.

Cang passed the grave yard and the road right next to it and took the next right heading for Carmichael Road. At Carmichael, he hung a left narrowly missing a jitney that was speeding east in the rights lane. Now, I am not sure you know enough about the Bahamas to realize that although the jitney was in the right lane, it was in the wrong lane. Jitneys are famous for that. Infamous if you must know the truth. They are infamous for a lot more besides which we may get into later.

Cang took it in stride, pretending that it was a German half track sent to wreck his mission by Hitler himself. Godwin, and the traditions surrounding, could lump it.

(6:12 am Nov 02, 2005)

Cang stops the moke on the side of the road and walks over the casuarina pine needles to the Coral Harbour beach. At the water's edge, he turns east and walks with the sea lapping at his ankles. It is cold at first, but Cang quickly gets used to it and stops noticing.

And now we learn why Cang was daydreaming about Miami. True, it was turning out to be quite a day for daydreaming in general and true, Cang was generally somewhat of a daydreaming boy, but the daydream about Miami was no regular daydream. No, this was a daydream of monumental proportions, of monumental significance to the future of the free world, for you see, Cang had set out some bait the previous night in the hopes of attracting Miami Vice Junior. Well, OK, probably Miami Vice XXIII, but who's counting? Right?

As Cang approached the area where he had set out the bait, he slowed down and angled up the beach towards the bushes. Suddenly, out of nowhere, when he was least expecting it, he felt a sharp pain in his little piggy on his right foot. He looked down to see a small soldier crab locked like vice grips onto the self same toe that Miami had clamped onto all those years ago.

Cang let out a yell of pain and jubilation co-mingled.


(6:26 am Nov 02, 2005)

Time folded and unfolded for a while before settling down again. (Was Bruno nearby?)

Cang could not get the crab to release his toe! Memories of Miami Vice came flooding back to his mind. Childhood memories. Wonderful, joy filled, memories.

The pain was unbearable. But he had to bear it. How do you bear and unbearable pain? Is it like righting and unrightable wrong?

Canh hopped and hobbled down to the water and put his fight foot underwater. It took a few minutes, but Miami Jr. finally got the message and let go of Cang's toe and began crawling up the submerged sandy sea floor for the foamy shoreline.

Pool.

It could be a tidal pool. You know, those bits if water that remain above sea level, trapped as the tide recedes, chasing its lunar fantasies.

It could be a swimming pool. You could get a notion to swim across the USA from one back yard pool to another. I don't recommend that you try such a thing. You know, a swimming pool. Those oft times concrete, man made holes in the ground, filled with dihydrogenmonoxide and juiced with chemicals, and not just any chemicals mind you. Dangerous chemicals. Chemicals to bring a flutter to a young boys heart. Watch your children well. Chemicals like chlorine, muriatic acid (HCl) and sodium carbonate. Don't get overly excited about the latter though.

(6:46 am Nov 02, 2005)

(Elsewhere that morning, Bruno made a mental note to stop or severely cut down googling for information as it seriously reduces his words per minute output on his nano novel.)

Cang reached down and grabbed Miami Jr. Careful to put his thumb over Junior's big biter and apply firm but loving pressure.

Back at the moke, Cang placed Junior (OK, OK, XXIII I promise to call him XXIII from now on, get off my back) in a glass bottom bucket into which he had placed some lettuce and some bread.

At the Coral Harbour round about, Cang headed for Clifton.

Cang parked the moke by the porpoise pens and began to get to know XXIII and slowly started introducing him to his training regimen...

(6:55 am Nov 02, 2005)

From the small cliffs to the left of the porpoise pens (looking out to sea) Bruddah Bing and Bruddah Boom watched Cang interacting with XXIII with growing concern. This did not look good at all. No, not in the slightest. Soldier crabs were not supposed to get along with humans. And getting along with a caveman looking human had to be worse. And what was a caveman looking human doing in two thousand and five anyway?

Bruddah Bing decided that they should start an anti NaNoWriMo movement to combat the ridiculous things these nano novelists were wont to create. I mean, a caveman in two thousand and five? What next, soldier crabs who can talk and start protest movements? I mean! Really!

Bruddah Boom crawled back into a bit of mixed broad leaf coppice and uncovered a spool of Blue Nylon Thread that he had been saving for emergencies. If this did not constitute and emergency, he didn't know what did.

(7:05 am Nov 02, 2005)

Friends.

A good friend is someone to be cherished and held dear.

A friend in need is a friend in deed.

What does this mean?

Does it mean that if you have a friend who is in need, then that friend is really a true friend?

Does it mean that if a person is a friend to you in your hour of need then that person is a true friend?

Does it mean something else entirely? (Write and let me know if you have any other ideas. Will you?)

For a long time, I thought it meant the former and was confused by it. The possibility of the latter explanation never occurred to me and I never thought to ask for an explanation. You may wonder about this but you must understand that I come from a family like the one I come from. This is a family that, when a child asked the inevitable and famous:

"But why, daddy?"

Would get back and answer like:

"Because Y is a crooked letter and you can't make it straight."

Or the enigmatic:

"Because it's an eyebrow."

Figure that one out if you think you're bad.

A family that, when correcting a child and receiving the answer:

"I don't care."

Would respond with:

"You know where Don't Care live? Don't Care live in Fox Hill Prison."

That one at least made sense to me.

A family that, when a child was being stubborn would boldly proclaim:

"Hard head bird don't make good soup!"

I always wondered if they were secretly encouraging me to be hard headed, or if they were under the mistaken impression that I had some hidden desire to be made into soup or that I believed it was a bird's fondest to be made into the same.

I never asked them about that one either.

You get the drift?

(7:26 am Nov 02, 2005)

(7:22 pm Nov 02, 2005)

So, what were we talking about? Oh, yes, friends. I am sure you have a few of your own.

Bruddah Bing and Bruddah Boom were not really brothers at all, well, actually they were, but they were not each other's brothers. No they were each other's friends. Each other's best friends in fact. In fict too, but we will not go there right now. Will we? They hung together all the time. Causing no small amount of trouble on the island along the way.

They were so well attuned to each other that they often did not have to talk about their plans and intentions and this was one of those occasions. When Bruddah Bing saw Bruddah Boom crawl out of the coppice with the Blue Nylon Thread, he knew the plan and they began to execute at once.

They measured off a certain number of strands, clipping the thread with their multi-purpose pinchers. Then the quickly wove a net from the strands.

Stealthily, they began to creep down the cliff towards Cang and XXIII with certain intentions that are best left to the readers imagination at this point. As they crept down, they slowly increased the distance between themselves until the net was stretched fully between them.

As they reached the bottom of the cliff and began to crawl across the open ground, Cang happened to turn in their direction and he spotted them right off. Well, really he first spotted the blue net, but then his eyes scanned around and saw Bruddah Bing and Bruddah Boom although, at this point, he had not yet learned their names.

Cang was not sure of their intentions, but this was a lonely and desolate spot and he was taking no chances. He quickly grabbed up XXIII and jumped in the moke. He pushed in the clutch, pulled out the choke, and fired up the engine. He put it in first and popped the clutch. He spun tires and fishtailed for a while throwing rocks off his tires and then bounced over the bumps as he headed up the hill.

Bruddah Bing and Bruddah Boom crawled back up the cliff and hid their net under a poison wood tree.

(7:40 pm Nov 02, 2005)

Alley.

Alleys can be narrow or they can be wide. They can be dark and dank, or they can be bright and sunny. They can be twisty and confusing or they can be straight. They can dead end or lead to somewhere. They can have crossroads (crossalleys?) or not.

Let me tell you about the alley that Cang and XXIII ended up in. This was an alley that we shall not name. An alley that we shall not give the location of either. We can say, however, that is was a narrow, twisty alley that seemed to dead end but at the very end it instead narrowed to be unpassable by the moke and then turned a blind corner before opening up onto a park. On the other side of the park it, or another alley similar to it, continued on. This alley was not clean either. There was rotting garbage everywhere. Flies swarmed and rats played freely, seemingly without fear of humans. And just let me say that theese were no play play rats, not these beauties were johnny rats. And one of those johnny rats was Johnny. In fact, Johnny was not just any johnny rat. You might say he was THE JOHNNY RAT.

Johnny watched with a keen interest as Cang and XXIII passed. He saw the haunted look of fear in Cang,s eyes. People with that look could often be dealt with in a certain way that could lead to a nice little something something. And Johnny knew how to deal in that certain way with the best of them.

(8:00 pm Nov 02, 2005)

Johnny fell in behind Cang and XXIII as they abandoned the moke and crossed the park to the alley on the other side.

A little more about the alley if I may...

The alley, on both sides of the park actually, was lined by dilapidated clap board houses. Many with their porches rotting through and many with holes in their roofs where they were missing wooden shingles. Often, there were several houses in the same yard. Sometimes, the alley would wind around in such a way that for someone who knew the area, there was a shortcut through a yard. Johnny knew the area well. He had things planned out. As Cang and XXIII turned a corner, he cut across a yard and got ahead of them. He climbed up a guinep tree and crawled out on a branch that overhung the alley.

He waited quietly for them to pass beneath them and then pounced on Cangs back!

Now Johnny had calculated his actions and plans to a T and things were going even better than he had planned. But there was a problem. He had mistakenly focused his attention on Cang and had not reconned with the probable reactions of XXIII. It was to be one of the most costly miscalculations of his life.

You see, XXIII had grown quite fond of Cang during their short time together and when he saw Johnny pounce, he promptly went into action. XXIII definately had Miami Vice's genes in him. (He may have even had genetic memories of Cang passed down in these genes.) Johnny didn't know what hit him. XXIII was all over him like white on rice. Johnny soon let out a squeal that was heard for miles. The pain was unlike anything he had ever experienced before and he had felt a lot of pain during his rough and tumble life.

XXIII clamped on him and pinched him in places and ways that he never could have imagined before actually experiencing them for himself. In fact, the pain was often so intense that he could not actually understand what was happening to him. XXIII left him broken. Under a bucket with a hole in it. Dear Liza or dear Henry may have been able to fix the hole in the bucket, but they, nor anyone else, would be able to fix Johnny again. Johnny was broke worse than Humpty Dumpty.

(8:21 pm Nov 02, 2005)

03. Tings Nov 03

(5:31 am Nov 03, 2005)

Junkanoo.

Junkanoo - Energy.

Junkanoo - Power.

Junkanoo - Creativity.

Junkanoo - Freedom.

Junkanoo - Confidence.

Junkanoo - Strength.

Junkanoo - Resourcefulness.

Junkanoo - Persistence.

Junkanoo - Purpose.

Junkanoo - Achievement.

Junkanoo - Success.

Junkanoo - Valley Boys.

Junkanoo - Saxons.

Junkanoo - Roots.

Junkanoo - One Family.

Junkanoo - Scrap Gangs.

Junkanoo - Rhythm.

Junkanoo - Beat.

And so we come to Bruno. Sitting in his car with his notebook plugged into the receptacle (also know as (or should we say once know as) as cigarette lighter) his wifi card spitting bits into the aether. He was working on his 2005 Nano Novel. He had xchat fired up and was joined to #bslug on freenode and to the nano channel #nanowrimo on goodchatting. #bslug was quite at this time of morning, but #nanowrimo was cooking already. Forty five people joined and text scrolling up the screen faster than he could hope to keep track of and write at the same time.

The words were coming out well this morning, a little slower than he would like, but no major blocks at this time. Abiword was doing its usual fine job of recording his thoughts and leo was keeping the whole book, and the notes and ideas that went into making it, well organized. Firefox was sitting minimized, waiting to be called into use to quickly hit google and look up any needed information. Sitting underneath the whole was his trusty Debian. His Linux. His Gnu/Linux if you will. This jewel of an operating system. And so much more.

Bruno thought of the GPL and smiled. His thoughts drifted to the Creative Commons and their BY-SA license and he smiled again.

Gotta get back to the novel. Gotta remember not to use google too much this year as well. Last year, the searching had put a serious damper on his words per minute figure.

(5:53 am Nov 03, 2005)

He was just getting going again when the need for tea hit him. Got to take a break to grab a cup. He sat his computer on the car seat and closed the lid. He dashed into a nearby place and ordered a cup of hot tea to go.

(6:09 am Nov 03, 2005)

Well, what was that all about? You would think they had to dig the well to get the water to make the tea. Or perhaps plant the tea bushes and wait for maturity? Who knows. Words per minute were heading south and if he was not careful, Bruno could start losing his groove. Focus. Let the fingers fly.

He wrote for a while longer and then saved his work and opened up a new document to make some notes for his interview with one of the local papers. It seems that the girl he had rescued yesterday was someone famous and that word of his exploits had gotten around and everyone wanted an interview.

Bruno didn't grant too many interviews these days. At one time he had relished the publicity because he figured it could help the cause of live music. These days, he didn't like giving others an exclusive copyright on his words. He preferred to keep his own copyrights on his own words and to release most of them under a copyleft license.

(6:25 am Nov 03, 2005)

Clifton.

What can we say? We have already had a passing introduction to Clifton, but I am sure many of you will need more information before we are done wit dese tings.

Clifton Pier. A place of caves and cliffs. A place of ocean swells and coral reefs that invite filmmakers and photographers. A place for thrill seekers and fishermen. A place for lovers. A place for bats and guano. A pirates staircase. A power plant. A brewery. A place where oil tankers dock and unload. And spill. A place for scuba divers.

A place of historical significance. A battleground.

And sometimes, a dangerous place.

A place that Bruddah Bing and Bruddah Boom called home.

(6:35 am Nov 03, 2005)

A place that they were reluctantly making plans to leave.

What the had witnessed yesterday had unsettled them and caused them a restless and sleepless night. In their world view, things like that just should not happen. When they awoke this morning from a troubled doze, they looked into each other's eyes and they knew. There was no discussion needed. They just knew.

And so they were going over plans to set the situation right. To track down Cang and XXIII and to free XXIII at all costs. And to deprogram him if necessary. The alternative did not bear contemplating.

(6:41 am Nov 03, 2005)

Cang and XXIII woke up on a smack boat headed for Spanish Wells.

(6:42 am Nov 03, 2005)

Jelli rolled out of bed. He had a passing thought of starting the day off with some hot corn bread but decided to head down to the Wind once again for some steamed bologna and grits with some johnny cake and some tea.

He was hoping he would run into Bruno again. He had something he wanted to go over with him. It was funny how you could make a friend and then go for so many years without seeing them and on meeting them again pick right up where you left off. Sure, there were things to catch up on, but the friendship seemed to be able to endure the gap. Then again, it could just be Bruno. Time seemed to do strange things around him.

Sometimes it seemed to run fast and sometimes it seemed to run slow. That wasn't too much of a problem. Sometimes it seemed to run backwards. That could really warp the mind and cause strange feelings.

When Jelli walked into the Wind, Bruno was already there, sitting at a table in the back by the coolers and typing away madly. Funny thing about Bruno. If you listened while he typed, there was an almost musical rhythm produced by the striking of the keys. If you weren't careful, it could lull you into a state of not quite full consciousness.

Jelli needed to remain fully conscious for what he wanted to go over with Bruno this morning and decided to stay that way with a combination of loud and boisterous talk and caffeine .

(7:04 am Nov 03, 2005)

(7:48 pm Nov 03, 2005)

Jelli pulled his whaler in to the dock and eased back on the throttle as Bruno jumped from the bow with a line in hand. It was late. to be getting back in. They should have been back hours ago.

They had headed out from the Wind after breakfast and headed out in the whaler. Jelli had taken her out through the narrows and then behind Spruce Cay and over to the North side of Rose. They had done some spearing out around Green Cay and Iron Bound Rock before heading in to McTaggert's beach and roasting their fish on an open fire built in a hole dug in the sand and fueled by dead casuarina branches gathered up in a few minutes.

Sand.

Yes, sand in the islands was something special. Bruno loved it. He loved looking at it. Photographing it. Digging in it. Lying on it. Playing on it. Making things with it. It was very versatile. It came in multiple colours and in various sizes from very fine to coarse. Bruno was fondest of the white and pink beaches.

While Jelli cleaned the fish and started grilling them, Bruno had broken out some conchs and cleaned them down at the water's edge. Sand was a great help in this endeavour. It was extremely useful in getting the slime away.

After a late lunch, they had messed about a bit more on the beach before heading out an messing about a bit more in the boat. It was during the second round of messing about that the trouble had started.

The prop go tangled up in something and everything fell apart. It had taken hours to untangle and chop away the mess. In the end, it turned out to be a net made of Blue Nylon Thread.

Now I know what you are thinking here.

You are thinking that it must be the net that Bruddah Bing and Bruddah Boom had made.

Nope. It was a completely different net. I know, I know, it is hard to believe, but I must ask you to try extra hard to suspend your disbelief for me on this one.

Anyway, after the had cleared the prop, the engine wouldn't start. Jelli tried some not so gentle persuasion on the thing, but it was finally Bruno who had coaxed it into life. Well, some semblance of life at least. It would not put out enough power to get the whaler up on a plane. It wouldn't even get them going very fast in a displacement sort of way.

Anyway, they finally limped into the harbour and were now going to hook the boat up to the hoist and drop her on her trailer. About now, you may be wondering what the name of this whaler was and I will tell you. It was named Cay Dreams. Jelli had bought it years and years ago from a girl named Linda Pinder. He had kept it in good condition and had changed the engine once about ten years back.

He had liked Linda but she had moved away and he had lost track of her. He always remembered a verse she had told him someone had written for her in her teenage years.

Linda Pinder,
your beauty's fire,
my soul's a cinder.

Jelli liked how that felt on the tongue.

Perhaps he and Bruno could do something with it.

(8:19 pm Nov 03, 2005)

Coral.

You got hard corals and you got soft corals. You got brain coral and you got fire coral. You got fire coral and you got trouble. Trust me on this one.

Bruno was suffering its effects now. Sometime during the day, he had wondered into a fire coral without realizing it until it was too late.

And by then it was too late.

Take my advice. Learn what fire coral looks like and stay away from it.

Jelli wanted to take Bruno out to dinner but Bruno said he was in too much pain and that he had to get back to writing his book and so Jelli dropped him off and headed out for a quick bite to eat.

He grabbed a snack from a chicken shack and wolfed it down with a pepsi and then headed out to a local club that had opened up recently where you could hear live music playing. Bruno had started affecting him again already.

Bruno drove back to his room and ordered in a pizza. He went on line to browse around a bit and fool around in the nano forums while waiting for the food to show up. His plan was to finish eating and soak in a hot tub for a while before getting down to writing for the night. He hoped he could stay awake long enough to get our his daily quote. It had been a long day and he was beat. He really should not have gone out in the boat today, but Jelli was an old friend and it had been enjoyable despite all the mishaps.

(8:35 pm Nov 03, 2005)

Bruno fell asleep and dreamed sweet dreams of West End Girls. Dreamed of East End Knights and honeyed twirls. Then the pizza delivery guy woke him up pounding on the door and shouting pizza.

Enough wasting time. Bruno paid the delivery guy and carefully locked the door. He sat at the dinette table and ate his dinner and then went back to his laptop. He minimized firefox and then fired up leo and abiword.

Soon, he was lost in the process of creation. The process of bringing forth words from deep within. Sometimes dragging them out kicking and screaming, sometimes rushing to keep up as they gushed out in great torrents, faster than he could type.

He was really starting to get into his story now and was finding himself grinning in places. Sometimes, he even heard himself chuckle. Yes, this year had possibilities.

(8:47 pm Nov 03, 2005)

He wrote for a little longer and passed his word goal for the day. It was good that he had done so much in the morning before going out with Jelli. After passing the goal, he switched from cranking out the words to planning a bit for the upcoming days. Both in terms of writing and in terms of his live music promotional efforts.

He woke up the next morning with his head on the table and leo staring him in the face.

04. Tings Nov 04

(7:50 am Nov 04, 2005)

Bulla.

"Hey bulla, where you been?"

"Right here, right here, Bulla. Where you been?"

Frizzell crawled out of Bruno's bag during the night while Bruno slept at the table and scurried under the bed. Frizz had stowed away in the bag while it sat on the beach in the bright sun and Jelli and Bruno had been walking its curves.

There were voices coming in the open window. Low and a bit slurred.

Frizz curled his tail.

Time played a few tricks in the night. A couple of cheap tricks and one rather expensive one.

(7:58 am Nov 04, 2005)

Now he watched with interest as Bruno woke up with a puzzled look on his face. He would have to bide his time until he could safely make a dash for the outdoors and freedom.

Bruno woke up groggy with a head ache and a bit off beat. This was not a most auspicious start to the fourth of November. Bruno reached for his optical mouse and called up Kontact. Nothing in the works for today except work on the book. His eyes slid over to tomorrow's entry:

Remember, remember, the fifth of November!

Ah yes, the burning of the guy. Bruno would have to add something to take up some of today's writing time. He wanted to get together the things needed to make a guy and them come back and make one. He had plans to go to a guy burning bash tomorrow night with some friends.

A couple of hours writing this morning, then a break to head out and get the needed materials, back by say four and a couple of more hours of writing and then a few hours to make his guy. That could work.

He added and entry before shutting down Kontact and then brought Abiword into focus. He was unaware that the had an unwanted visitor in the room with him.

Hey began typing and then remembered that he had not got the morning's paper off the porch yet.

Frizzell's tail twitched as he watched Bruno push back from the table and stand up. It curled tightly as Bruno headed fro the front door. While Bruno was looking the other way, he made a dash from under the bed to under the small table by the front door.

(8:33 am Nov 04, 2005)

He was poised and waiting and when Bruno opened the screen door and stepped out on the porch and reached down for the paper with one hand while holding on to the door with the other, he took his chance and made a dash for freedom.

Bruno went back inside and threw the paper over on the bed before going in an brushing his teeth. Frizzell was gone and he had left little evidence of his presence. It remains to be seen if Bruno will stumble on this evidence and if there is any importance to the fact of their paths crossing like this.

Red looked down at Froggy and his anger grew. He spread his wings and launched himself from the top of the lamp post where he had been singing. When he was directly above Froggy, he folded his wings and headed down.

(8:42 am Nov 04, 2005)

(6:38 pm Nov 04, 2005)

Froggy yelped as a sharp pain exploded in his head. Time smiled.

Dread.

Yeah dread, what it is?

Dreadlocks.

I dread this next stretch.

Oh yeah? I dread these exams that are coming up. You taking BGCSEs and SATs at the end of this school year?

I look young to you hey? Chile, back in my day we took GCEs. I did take the SATs too though.

Dread. that feeling that comes on you in the night.

Dread. What you call you buddy. (Among other things.)

Dreadlocks. Some people grow their own, some people buy fakes and wear them. Have you ever seen anyone wearing fake dreadlocks that looked real?

She came in through the bathroom window. Bruno felt a brief gentle breeze as she slipped in, but thought nothing of it. He concentrated on painting the face of his guy.

---

Bruddah Bing and Bruddah Boom crept across the bridge to Russell Island with their blue nylon thread net. When they had learned of Cang and XXIII's departure on the smack, they had caught a fast ferry up to Spanish Wells in the hopes of getting to the island ahead of them. Unfortunately, when they pulled into the harbour, they could see the smack called "Old Wrinkles " tied up at a dock near a restaurant that was closed for lunch.

(6:56 pm Nov 04, 2005)

They did not realize that the restaurant was closed for lunch until they tried to go in and get a bite to eat and to see if they could pick up the trail.

And picking up the trail had proved very difficult indeed. Although the people in the settlement had seemed friendly enough, they had not proved very forthcoming with straight answers to the soldiers admittedly sometimes aggressive questioning.

Finally, after dark, they had gotten a break. They were sitting beside a stone wall between a neat lawn and a road. They were resting and to be honest, they were both a bit confounded. At first they could not be sure, but they got the feeling that the same cars, usually with the exact same passengers, kept driving buy on a fairly regular schedule. Some people passing would wave. However, others would point at them and smile.

This made the two somewhat paranoid for a while, wondering if there were some deeper message behind the pointing. Bruddah Boom started to note down the license plate numbers and sure enough, it was the same vehicles passing again and again.

So, like I said, they were sitting by this stone wall and being passed by the same cars again and again. What I have not revealed yet is that there were some Segillians sitting behind them. Sitting on a swing. A front porch swing. On a front porch. The front porch to a neat little wooden house. A house painted white with pink trim. A house with wooden shingles and dormer windows in the attic and shutters pushed up with sticks. Shutters that could be dropped and fastened securely at a moments notice. A moments notice as to an approaching storm. And storms had a history with this settlement. The infamous Andrew had put a hurting on the place years back. A house sitting primly on ground pins.

The soldiers heard the people on the porch laughing. One of them had apparently just today told some visitor to the island that they had imported the ground pin holes for the house from Nassau early during the previous century and that they were installed with the help of sky hooks.

The soldiers chuckled a bit at this themselves. Their ears picked up however when they heard the butt described as hairy. Their break came when they heard that the visitors had been invited to the local men's club in the bushes.

Bruddah Bing and Bruddah Boom had been waiting in the shadows by the club and had seen Cang come in with some of the locals. There was no evidence of XXIII, but he could have easily been in one of Cang's many pockets.

In any case, they had seen no opportunity to net Cang without being seen and Cang had not stayed long in any case.

When he left, they had followed and seen him cross the bridge to Russell Island.

And so, they were creeping over the bridge with the net ready.

Guava.

A truly special fruit.

Guava duff. Guava ice cream. Guava pie. Guava jam. Guava jelli. Guava paste.

(7:24 pm Nov 04, 2005)

(7:43 pm Nov 04, 2005)

Guava tarts. The smell of guavas ripe on the tree.

Bruddah Bing smelled guavas in the air tonight. He remembered that they had not actually eaten anything since early this morning. His stomach rumbled.

The two were hiding out in the bushes bordering the house that they had seen Cang go into. After getting here, they had marched around the house looking for a way in that could be easily effected without making too much noise. No such ways were in evidence and so they had set up watch.

---

Bruno finished his guava duff and licked the remaining sauce from the spoon and then from his bowl. She peered into the room under the bathroom door. The skin on the back of Bruno's neck stood up. She sensed this and closed her eyes slowly and Bruno shivered slightly before his hair settled down and he put the finishing touches on his guy.

Froggy was long gone. Down to Retirement park to hang with some of the other potcakes for the evening. He did not usually hang with this pack as they tended to be a little rough around the edges for his taste and he feared getting the mange or even fleas. But tonight, the pain in his head was pounding and he had already downed a 40 ounces of the rats brew and was not feeling too discerning as to his company.

Red was once again singing outside of Bruno's window. He noticed his feathers fluffing out every now and again for no apparent reason.

She was paying Red no mind.

(7:59 pm Nov 04, 2005)

Music.

What should I say? You could write a whole book on this one subject alone and when you were done, no matter how thik the book, there would still be more to write.

Bruno had once considered writing a detective novel with the working title of "Murder in Three Quarter Time" but had never quite yet gotten it started. He had written a short story once called "The Syncopated Killings" but it was back home in his trunk at the foot of his bed. perhaps he should get it out and put it up on his ourmedia site with a BY-SA license. He fired up Kontact and added an entry to his todo list.

(8:22 pm Nov 04, 2005)

The block was threatening. Time was passing and no words were flowing. Google had called seductively and research had replaced writing. This could easily derail a nano effort. It was hard not to spend too much time watching the words scroll by in #nanowrimo on goodchatting as well. At least he had not yet fallen to the temptation to post in #nanowrimo or in the nano forums. The Song (Question and Answer) Game was calling though. A quick check showed that no one had posted since his last response though so that particular temptation eased a bit.

---

(8:27 pm Nov 04, 2005)

The soldiers decided to take direct action. No more of this foolin around. They strung their net on the front porch of the house and Bruddah Boom managed to crawl up the wall and ring the doorbell.

Cang came out to see who was there and became entangled in the net. The soldiers sprang into action, wrapped him up and dragged him off into the bushes.

---

She briefly opened her eyes. Not fully, just small slits which emitted a faint reddish glow. Getting her bearings, she closed her eyes again and slithered out under the bathroom door and crawled across the floor to hide under the bed. The very same bed which Frizzell had hidden under.

For some reason, Bruno was feeling restless. He saved his work and scp'd a copy to a server located elsewhere and made another copy on his small flash drive. he got up and walked over to the bed. He took off his shorts and sat down and pulled on his jeans. Then he reached down and felt under the bed for his boat shoes. They weren't where he first expected and he groped around for a while before his fingers found them.

She was feeling an uneasy pulsing feeling in her gut. She did not open her eyes.

Bruno pulled out his shoes and dropped them on the floor and slipped them on. Then he stood up and walked towards the door.

She felt a little better and took a chance and opened her eyes. She saw Bruno's back as he opened the door and stepped out. She saw the hairs on his neck stand up briefly.

Bruno felt a vague sense of unease as the door close. You could almost call it a sense of dread. Then the door slammed shut and rattled a bit and gave off a few good vibrations and he felt better.

Forget the writing for tonight. He was near his daily goal and he could catch up tomorrow. Tonight, he needed to find some live music somewhere. He wanted to at least listen, preferably to get in on the playing somewhere.

(8:42 pm Nov 04, 2005)

05. Tings Nov 05

(7:26 am Nov 05, 2005)

Dollar.

In that letter, was a dollar.

Cent, five cent, ten cent, dollar.

In her right hand, was a silver dollar.

BRAAAAANK!

Dude, I bet you think the song goes:

paper bag, I'll meet you
same place, same time

too.

It is:

And in her right hand is a silver dagger.

OK, OK, gimma one break.

I never said I was an expert on dollars ya know. If I was to show you my bank balance you would know dat. But then I would have to kill you. I heard someone suggest the other day that the "But then I would have to kill you" ploy might count as a valid protection mechanism under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

So, we used to have pounds, shillings and pence but sometime in the sixties we switched to dollars and have not looked back since.

I mean, can you imagine?

Penny, thruppence, shilling, pound.

Just not as musical, is it?

Even after the switch though we still had funky money. A square fifteen cent piece. A ten cent piece with a scalloped edge. A fifty cent note and a red three dollar bill. Now, the three dollar bill is not special in our monetary affairs on account of it being red. No, all of our notes are of various colours. The half dollar bill and the three dollar bill are just special on account of their denominations. And no, they are not jumpers.
(7:50 am Nov 05, 2005)

OK, I think it is time for you too meet some new characters.

First we have Spike. Spike is a scorpion and he lives on a small cay offshore of the bay that is east of Coral Harbour and has the rat bat's palace on its shores.

Next we have Leggs. Leggs is a centipede. Leggs is no play play centipede mind you. Leggs is fifteen inches of meanness and obstinance.

Hmmm. Who else should we bring on stage today. OK, OK, I know this is supposed to be a novel and not a play and so, technically, there is no stage to bring these characters on to, but again, give me a break will you?!?!

Besides, all the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages.

That has a nice ring to it, don't you think? That might be one of the better things I have ever written.

BRAAAAANK!

I look like I just fall off a turnip truck to you? You didn't just write that.

Yes, I did, you just saw me write it. OK, well I typed it, I didn't write it. You are always being so technical.

Now you are being foolish. I know those words are from "As you like it." Act II Scene VII. You should know better than to try and pass another's work off as your own. Especially the Bard's.

Now, that's where you are wrong. You see, passing a significant chunk of another's work off as your own can get you in deep trouble. I am not talking of simply alluding to or making a reference to someone else's work. I am talking of actually using the work of another as if it were your own.

Right, and that is what you tried to do.

Precisely. And precisely wrong. You see, if I had tried to pass off some obscure writer's work as my own, people might have taken me serious. And I could have landed in hot water. Now, by pretending to try and pass off some famous quote as my own, it ends up being humourous instead. At least it would have been if you had not gotten involved and made this long, drawn out, boring, discussion happen. Go back to working on your own nano novel will you and stay out of mine. Well, no, I don't mean exactly that. You know what I mean, just go.

Exit, stage left.

(8:16 am Nov 05, 2005)

Blue.

Blue moon. Blue Bayou. Blue Suede Shoes. Blue on blue. Blue, the colour of those pesky Caribs. Soundly defeated by the Lucayans robed in their victorious Red. "SIMBA!" chants ring out!

Blue. Many shades and variations of blue in the Bahamian seas and skies. Beautiful blue. Soothing blue. Appetite arresting blue. The blue plate special. All you can't eat. Now maybe that could work in the islands. An all you can't eat restaurant.

Blue Nylon Thread. Blue Thread Hues. Concerning The Establishment Of A Blue Thread Factory In Outer Mongolia.

I give you a quote from that famous tome...

"We are presently looking for a small, select group of alien investors to help fund our infrastructure development program. We are offering Class IAA shares in our company. Each share also comes with the right to buy a share in the factory itself at a future date. Considering the excellent profit potential of our endeavors, we expect having the required investors at an early date. Therefore, if you wish to gain an equity position in this venture you should call right away. Don't wait, call today!"

I called and it looked like I would be rich for a while. Then things turned ugly and the alien investors pulled out.

Now you have to understand. These weren't alien investors as in investors from another country. No, these really were alien investors, you know, the kind that are rumoured to visit in UFOs. Yes, those kind of alien investors. Something about some plans in some out of the way room in some government office. I don't really know. That was all rumours too.

---

Spike decided he was tired of his little cay and wanted to see the wider world. He dragged a small piece of driftwood down the beach and hopped on as it began floating on the waves. Between the winds and the current, he ended up coming ashore on the beach in Coral harbour in the exact spot where Cang had been painfully introduced to Junior a few days ago.

OK, OK. XXIII. And yes, I think there are a lot of coincidences in fiction as well, but you never know. Humans just don't seem to have good instincts when it comes to statistics and especially the statistics as it relates to degrees of separation and the like.

(8:30 am Nov 05, 2005)

(9:23 am Nov 05, 2005)

Just ask a bunch of people their opinion of the birthday problem if you want confirmation of this.

What is the birthday problem, you ask.

How many random people do you need in a room to have a better than fifty-fifty chance of two having the same birthday. Not counting the year naturally.

Bogus.

That is so bogus. The bogosity factor just went up around here. he tried to pass me some bogus money.

He was like, budy, you gat change for a thirty? So I was like, not exact, but I could give you thirty five if you have a five to add to that thirty.

He said sure, so I take his thirty and his five and give him back two twelves and a leven.

Man, you bad like dat.

(9:31 am Nov 05, 2005)

Bogus, bogus, bogus. Spike liked he sound of that word. Bogus, it just sort of came out smoothly. Bogus. Tres bogus.

Spike, headed east, crossed the canals, passed the rat bat palace and then after a little more walking along the rocky shore, headed in along the creek lined with the mangrove trees.

---

Leggs was sitting under Bruno's porch when she slipped out, the morning sunlight was not her bag. You could say that she and the morning sun were bad company. She did have a rebel soul though.

Leggs took one look at her and she yuk up his vexation. Now, like I have said, Leggs was known around town for his meanness and his obstinance, but seeing she brought him to a whole nother level entirely. What he felt when she burned her form into his mind was multiple orders of magnitude of meanness than he had ever felt before. If fact, this feeling was qualitatively different to everything he had ever felt before, not just quantitatively different.

It was all he could do to hold himself still and await his chance. Every leg on his body wanted to burst into a frenzy of motion and carry his body headlong into action.

The years of ninja training payed off. Although all of his hundred feet remained touching the exact same spot on the earth, his entire body vibrated. It was strange, it almost seemed to him that he was resonating.

He had begun to notice this new feeling after the new guy moved in a few days ago. There was something about him. Leggs felt deep inside that that something may also have been contributing to his feelings towards she.

She came to the edge of the porch and turned around and cast a longing glance to the bathroom window she had used to gain entrance the night before. There really was nothing like love in she eyes though. Not now, nor the night before.

She came down the steps. Bruno had never returned and she suspected he might have gotten stuck on the MTA with some guy and his never ending supply of sandwiches. She was mistaken. This was the Bahamas and not Jamaica.

Zoned.

Well, Leggs wasn't zoned, but he felt he was in the zone as it were. He let his mind release the hold it had on his body, his legs in particular and he was off like a shot, silently speeding up behind she.

She had no chance. Leggs was on he in an instant. A regular centipede could have probably put a hurtin on she. A fifteen inch centipede could have definitely put a hurtin on she. A meaner than a junk yard dog, fifteen inch centipede could have put a major hurtin on she. Leggs was a fifteen inch, meaner than a junk yard dog, ninja trained centipede. Like I said, she had no chance.

You could say that she was zoned after the fist bite, but that would be an understatement. You may not have noticed, but we are not generally given to understatements around here. Overstatements, yes. Underhanded statements. Yes, but let's not shout it out loud, OK? Undertow? yes, but that is not relevant to this part of the story.

(10:20 am Nov 05, 2005)

He left she in pieces on the concrete pathway. You must understand. I don't mean to imply that he left she heart in pieces. He, he actually left she in pieces.

Pieces which Red swooped down and flew out over the harbour and dropped into the water. Pieces which Heath swallowed in passing. Sorry, I wasn't supposed to introduce Heath today, but he sort of butted his way into the story there.

Leggs crawled back under the porch and crawled into a crack and settled down contented. He dreamed ninja dreams of she demise and his glorious part in it. Even as he slept, his body vibrated with a subtle rhythm.

(10:28 am Nov 05, 2005)

---

Spike crossed the creek at a spot that looked promising and continued on.

---

The soldiers woke up in the bushes, tangled in their own net, their own blue nylon thread net. The shame. The disgrace. At least it wasn't Cang who had overpowered them and trussed them up like two chickens. Who had handled them as easily as two drunken chickens, their heads bound for the chopping block. Their bodies destined to run around drunk with no heads. No, it was XXIII who had done this to them. They still could not believe it. Two, large, strong, highly trained and highly motivated soldiers overcome and trussed up by a child of a crab. Two soldiers, turned on by one of their own in defense of a human. A hairy human at that.

It was certainly gonna be hard trying to live this down. perhaps they should not tell any of the other soldiers. No, that wouldn't do. They would have to at least tell Big Sal. They would need his help in making things right.

(10:37 am Nov 05, 2005)

(6:15 pm Nov 05, 2005)

Over a hundred million words now and my share is just over eleven thousand.

I have used my four words for today and I don't want to dip into tomorrows words so I will have to pick some extra from my spares. It is a good thing I have already prepared a spares list.

Authentic. I want you to know that my desire to entertain you is authentic. This book is made up of almost one hundred percent authentic words. Some are slang or dialect mind you, but no less authentic for that. Some may be spelled in an innovative fashion, but let me assure you, they are no less authentic because of that.

Authentic. Bona Fide. Tales of brave Ulysses.

Please, if you find any non-authentic words before the contest is over, please, please post suggested authentic replacements so that we can publish a book on lulu at the end of the month that is composed of as near to one hundred percent authentic words as is humanly possible. Let me add... as much as humanely possible as well. You can post suggested authentic replacements as comments on the book's ourmedia blog page.

Authentic. Der real ting. True true tings. Autentic. Ya gat dat right.

(6:26 pm Nov 05, 2005)

Bruno decided to write a little nano song for inclusion in his nano novel. It took a while, but here is what he came up with:

The NanoWriMo Song
Copyright 2005, Bruno da Beat.

I'm gonna write me a nano song.
Not too short and not too long.
Not too weak and not to strong.
I'm gonna write me a nano song.

I'm gonna play me a nano tune.
Along the lines of the cow and the moon.
Hey mister fiddle what became of the spoon?
I think I need him for my nano tune.

I'm gonna throw me a nano ball.
Wine and women and that's not all.
Lot's of beef and hot salsa for all.
Come and dance at my nano ball.

I'm gonna write me a nano book.
Thirty days to write it won't you take a look.
Like my tune there's gonna be no hook.
You can read it in my nano book.

I'm gonna play me a nano game.
There in the forums where some are lame.
Looking for my quarter hour of fame.
I'm gonna play me a nano game.

I'm gonna steal me a nano kiss.
Steal it from you if you will let me miss.
You and I could share some nano bliss.
If I could steal just one nano kiss.

Won't you sing me my nano song.
I would do it but it'd turn out wrong.
Record it for me and send it along.
Won't you sing me my nano song?
Please sing me my nano song?
Won't you sing me my nano song?

(6:37 pm Nov 05, 2005)

Now that is an authentic nano song.

Let's all get up and dance to it. If all you two thousand and five nanoers join with me, we can make it a worldwide hit. What do you say? Let's record it and I will put it up on lulu for sale. Lulu takes twenty percent. If you know of a place to get a better deal, we can go with that. I propose that whatever is cleared on the CD be divided like this.

One share to the 2005 Nano Fundraising Cash-o-Meter
One share to me.
One share to the person who writes the best by-sa music for it.
One share to the recording artist.
One share as a prize to be given out to a 2005 nano winner.

So, we put the cd on sale and buy a copy and promote sales for it. Could we make it a gold record? That would be an accomplishment. OK, so this is somewhat self serving. It would be nice to get some money out of this year's effort. Are there any other nano songs that could go on the cd?

(6:53 pm Nov 05, 2005)

Bruno started on a bowl of oatmeal with brown sugar for dinner and continued writing while he ate. You woln't think that a beat would have to watch what he ate, but you would be mistaken. Bruno had been watching what he ate for several good years now.

Free. Now there is a word that is music to the ears of many. Now English is a funny language when it comes to free. Many languages, I am told, have the equivalent of libre and gratis, but English has free. Free means libre and free means gratis. Many people out in the world currently, love to use these meanings of the word free to confuse matters when arguing before the public. Actually, it is more likely that they are trying to confuse the actual public and not to confuse matters. Of course, they may just be terminally confused themselves. You can find many fine examples of this verbal sleight of hand taking place in discussions surrounding Free Software. Please note, if you decide to do this research for yourself, you should at all times remain cognizant of the fact that Free Software refers to software that is libre and not software that is gratis.

This very book, yes, the one you are currently reading is being released under a Creative Commons BY_SA license in an attempt to set it free. If I find a license that I believe sets it free in a better manner, I will probably release it under that license as well. I do hope to sell it though. So I don't always intend it to be gratis. As a matter of fact, you can even make and sell copies if you so desire. Legally no less. You won't go to jail and face huge, outrageous fines if you make and sell copies of this book. Without sending me once red cent mind you! (SIMBA! Red! Victory!) Obviously, if you sell a bunch of copies, I wouldn't mind if you sent me a share of the proceeds, but there is no legal requirement to do so.

(7:07 pm Nov 05, 2005)

Imagination. Use yours. Imagination. You can do it! Imagine. Imagination. What a beautiful word. What a powerful word. Why, the power contained in that one word is ginourmous.

Let's imagine together for a while. What sort of buzz would be created around nanowrimo if that nano song cd idea that I just imagined took off and the cd went gold or even platinum. I mean, I know that nanowrimo gets a huge amount of buzz as it is, but just imagine.

Let's do it.

Now imagine with me a little longer. Imagine we came up with some way to set a lot of this year's nano novels free. Free as in libre mind you. How could we do this? let me ramble for a bit and see what shows up.

Let's say nano novelist that wanted to let the public read what they had written after having won the contest were to set a Freedom Price on their nano novel this year. Let us imagine further that every nano novelist would commit to buy at least twenty dollars worth of two thousand and five nano novels. I just checked and see over fifty thousand novelists listed as being a part of team two thousand and five. That would give one million dollars to purchase the freedom of nano novels this year.

Now, I need to explain that the Freedom Price is. The Freedom Price is the amount and author sets at which their novel would be set free under a BY-SA license and put up on ourmedia.

Is you imagination working? Let's go on rambling for a bit.

OK, so nano authors set a freedom price for their novel and then put their novel up on lulu or some place similar. I guess we would need a forum set up on nano where they could post links to their shops. They would also pick a selling price for their novel. Natch.

Imagine. This could work you know.

(7:40 pm Nov 05, 2005)

Nano authors would browse around and buy at least twenty dollars worth of nano novels that had not yet reached their freedom price. We could free a lot of words and send a few bob or more to some nano winners. It may help warm a few novelists this winter. And by the way, bob's your uncle.

Or, here is another scenario.

Imagine we decided to put one lucky 2005 nano winner on the new york times best seller list. Since we are discussing Free as well. Imagine we decided that the person would have to set a freedom price of reasonable proportions.

Now imagine that we came up with some way to choose this nano author.

Imagine we took those same fifty thousand plus nano 3005 authors who still committed to spend twenty dollars on nano books after November.

Imagine the lucky winning author put their book on lulu or somewhere similar with a sale price of one dollar. (Actually, they would probably have to get the package with the ISBN number and we would probably have to do our purchasing through Amazon and Barnes and Noble for this to work. I am not sure, does anyone know?

So, we could make a million selling author, overnight.

IMAGINE what sort of BUZZ that could create for NaNoWriMo.

Do you imagine it might generate just a wee bit of buzz? A wee bit do you?

Imagination. Let it run free.

(7:57 pm Nov 05, 2005)

You might be wondering what all of this has to do with the actual novel itself. You have every right to wonder. Those of you paying attention and who are familiar with foreshadowing may already have picked up on this.

You see, these are the sorts of ideas that Bruno had running through his head when thinking about live music and free music and the like.

Badda bing, badda boom. No, not Bruddah Bing and Bruddah Boom. They are still off stage and yes, I know this is a novel (at least it is supposed to be one) and not a play. Remember that quote by the bard? Sure, I knew you could.

Secrets. Ooooh. I could tell you some. Some nice juicy secrets. Not everyone knows this, but secrets and rumours are closely related. Not everyone knows this either, but the people of Spanish Wells are world renowned experts in rumours. Not everyone knows this either, although most Bahamians probably do. In the Bahamas rumours or gossip often go by the name of sip sip.

Now it is a fact that people living in Nassau who have Spanish Wells connections will often be given the latest when talking to their connections up in Spanish Wells. And not the latest concerning the goings on in Eleuthera. Oh no, the latest on the goings on in Nassau. Sometimes breaking news even. It is no wonder that there is a world renowned institute established on the island dedicated to research in the field of rumours.

Of course, it is no secret that Bruddah Bing and Bruddah Boom were still stuck under the bushes in their self woven, blue nylon thread net. Now it may be a secret to some, but did you know that, under the right fictional conditions, blue nylon thread can exceed the strength to weight ratio of carbon nano tubes?

Oops, there's another coincidence for you. Carbon nano tubes showing up in a nano novel. I wonder if that is a first. Perhaps I should let a space elevator get built in a later scene.

Keep that disbelief suspended please. The Author will turn off the sign to let you know when it is safe to turn on your disbelief once again.

(8:21 pm Nov 05, 2005)

Oops. Bruno looked at his watch and realized that he would be late for the burning of the guy if he did not leave soon. Just a few more words to crank out before he could leave.

Now, those of you from other cultures may think that the island women of today are taking things too far. I mean it is one thing to be smarter than the men, but they do not have to get into immolating them. You should know that the burning of the guy is not the same thing as a man being burned as in roached or some other fashion.

Google is your friend in this matter. Remember, remember, the fifth of November.

Bruno dashed out of the door with his guy in his arms. He had not felt the hairs on his neck stand up all evening.

(8:30 pm Nov 05, 2005)

06. Tings Nov 06

(7:33 am Nov 06, 2005)

Cheese. Now you have all kinds of cheese. But there is one kind of cheese that was more famous than all the rest when it comes to the Bahamas.

Daisy Cheese. This is the cheese you want in your grits and cheese. I sure do miss it. Cheddar has been my substitute of choice in latter years. It works for grits and cheese well enough, but it is not a perfect substitute.

Now, in the Bahamas, some people make their grits runny and some make theirs hard or stiff.

On a recent trip, I was talking to someone from Louisiana who told me they made their grits different than we did and went on to tell me they made runny grits.

Well, runny grits was always the way to go in my family. There was a long running (that's a pun for those who are not paying attention) juke in the family that if you couldn't count the individual grains, it was not runny enough.

There are places you can go and they make the grits so hard that it is almost like a pie. You can cut into it with a knife and it will stand up. Not in our house. Runny is how we run things.

Daisy Cheese. You go to the corner store and they cut a wedge for you from the block or wheel and wrap it in paper. It is always nice if you get the red from the edge. It can be wax paper or brown paper. You probably let them cut you some thick slices of bologna (likely Maple Leaf) from the big stick. If you are lucky, you buy a loaf or two of hot bread (unsliced) from the bakery nearby.

By the time you get home, you probably need to turn around and go back and repeat the order. Slam Bam!

(7:50 am Nov 06, 2005)

(8:07 am Nov 06, 2005)

Bruno was getting back to working on his book when there came a knock at the front door.

"Come on in Jelli, the key is under the mat."

"Stop talkin foolishness, there aint no mat here much less a key under it."

"Be right there, this isn't the sixties you know. This is the naughties. (I use the American spelling to make the joke work better. For those who prefer the English way, the noughties. The decade with the noughts get it? Oh forget it!)

"Jelli man, what are you doing here this morning, didn't I tell you last night that I had to write this morning."

"I know, I know, Beat, but I thought you would want to know this. I just got the sip sip that there is a pickup junkanoo rush out starting in a while over at the park. I found someone who will lend you his drum. They have the fire going for you now. So how is the book coming anyway."

"Jelli, man, that's great news. You know I gatta do that. But I gatta do this too. And I am having great fun with this book. I am in the middle of this great ruse that I have been setting up for years now."

"What kinda great ruse? I love ruses. Is it elaborate?"

"Oh, it's elaborate, Jelli Man. In my book, I have this guy writing a novel where I am one of the main characters. Now the thing is, this guy doesn't actually exist. But I have set things up so that he seems real."

"How can someone who doesn't exist seem real, Beat?"

"Well, here's what I did. Last year, I signed up for him at NaNoWriMo and wrote a book and submitted it and won in his name. I did a lot of posting in the forums as him and have actually been leaving traces as him on the net for years. Man, I think you might still find evidence of him on the Digital Oasis if you can ever get an account out of the sysop."

"Man, I remember Digital Oasis, what was your handle on it?"

"That's just the thing Jelli, I never had a handle of my own on the Oasis. I used this character's handle."

"OK, so what was it? I wanna see if I remember it."

"Jelli man, it was zotz and I know I remember dealing with you."

"Zotz! Are you having me on? That's not possible. Next you're gonna try and tell me that you fictional character ran the ZotzBoard."

"You got it Jelli, I have been laying the threads for this year's nano for years. Now, obviously, since I have been laying these threads since before nano existed, I wasn't laying them with nano in mind, but I was laying them on purpose and when nano came along, I saw my opportunity. I bided my time. Then, like I say, last year I signed up in his name and wrote a novel as if I were him. I submitted it and won. Or he won. This year, I entered as him again and and writing a book as him again but this year, I am one of the main characters in the book he is writing."

"Beat Man, that sounds like fun, but it is too elaborate and is taking too long to explain. We gatta go if you want to get dat drum and get in dat rush."

(8:35 am Nov 06, 2005)

(9:23 am Nov 06, 2005)

Cang was on his way back to Nassau with XXIII. His heart was troubled. His heart was singing with joy. Troubled because of what had happened last night. When that net dropped on him, he knew he was done for. He could feel the strength in it. The more he had struggled, the tighter it had bound him. He could see the bad intent in those soldier's eyes too. He thought of scuba equipment. Well, only one piece really. Aqualung. He played the part of the little girl in his mind's eye.

Then XXIII had come crashing through the front plate glass window like some stunt man in a lousy, big budget blockbuster movie. Claws snapping like they were guns blazing.

Cang was so proud. Those soldiers were so much bigger than XXIII and there were two of them. They stood no chance. He tore into them and they were confounded by his snappy style of kung fu. Every move they tried to make was countered three moves ago by his technique. While he held the two of them off with his little biter, he had begun to snip through the net with his big biter.

Cang smiled and his heart sang with joy when he remembered watching the plan unfold in XXIII's sharp mind right before his eyes. Yes, XXIII had started to snip through the blue nylon strands of the net, but then Cang had seen a gleam come into his eyes and he had switched strategies in mid snip. He began an amazing untangling process with his big biter while continuing to hold off the two big soldiers with his small biter.

The two soldiers had been conducting a combined frontal attack, but when they saw XXIII switch from the cutout maneuver to the untangling play, they too had switched tactics. In their case, it was to prove tactics of mistake. Unfortunately for them, it was a mistake on their part.

Bruddah Bing had continued with the frontal attack while Bruddah Boom had tried a flanking maneuver. XXIIIs kung fu was strong though and again he had countered their moves three moves before they made them.

Before Cang knew what had happened, he was free and the two big soldiers were bound hopelessly in their own net and hidden in some bushes.

Frog.

Egg. Tadpole. Tadpole with legs. Froglet. Frog.

(9:42 am Nov 06, 2005)

(10:46 am Nov 06, 2005)

A bullfrog dressed in soldier's clothes
Went in de field to shoot some crows,
De crows smell powder and flyaway,
De bullfrog mighty mad dat day.

Adapted to the islands would go something like this.

Bullfrog dress up in soldier clothes
Gone to da river to shoot some crow
Crows smell fire and dey all fly away
Bullfrog get wex an he cry all day

In the islands, the frogs like to sing for you after the rain, especially at night. An chile please. Don't talk if ya gat rainwater tank. You juss ga have frog song den.

Bullfrog it's rainin, don't go cross da road.

Da frog, he don't like salt though. He do like. No dat een right. She do like to leave her eggs in ya barrel of rainwater or in dem swimmin pools an in da puddles and ponds.

Potcake was a frog. Try to remember this. If you miss it things could get confusin and you will end up confuddleated. Potcake is a frog and Froggy is a potcake. Dat's juss how tings verk out and you need ta stay on ya toes and min ya Ps an Qs or you ga be confuse.

So Potcake was hangin in the rainwater tank in the park. You may wonder what a park needs a rainwater tank for. Well, it goes like this.

Once upon a time, (I bet you didn't expect a once upon a time story in a book like this.) there was a house on the land that the park now occupies. It was a nice two story wooden house with nice balconies all around and two big rooms in the attic with dormer windows all around. A big family lived in the house and during the hot months in the summer, all the children slept outside on the upstairs porch. The father in this family was a fisherman and one day he was out on his smack boat (11:13 am Nov 06, 2005 - dreaded google research sidetrack has struck) and the sloop was done in by a water spout. The father never returned. There was fighting in the family over the will and one thing led to another. Several lawyers made out well. The mother was allowed to live in the house until the children were grown and moved out and then the house sat empty for years.

If you look, you can still see the front gate and the stone walkway up to those stone stairs going nowhere right over there. That's all that is left of the house. That and this rainwater tank that we are sitting on.

Potcake is down there in the damp darkness below us now.

Lignum.

Lignum Vitae. This is the wood you want to use to make your pegging tops from. Now a pegging top is a spinning top used in the game of pegging. You don't want none a dem play play store tops if you are going out to peg in da street. You need a good native top with a powerful peg an a hard body.

A lignum vitae top.

Problem is, the Lignum Vitae tree is the national tree of the Bahamas and it is not so easy to get good lignum legally anymore. I don't know, that might not be right, but you hardly ever see a good lignum top around anymore.

Pegging goes something like this. Say you draw a line on the road. Everyone gets to try and peg the line.

To Peg: to throw your spinning top down at the ground with an overhanded motion. If pegging on macadam, pegging will leave a hole in the tarmac.

OK, so the one whose hole is farthest from the line has to lay his top down for others to try and peg.

So far so good? Is that clear?

Now the game really begins. The object of the game is to split your opponent's top in half and put him out of the game.

Play proceeds something like this.

Each remaining player goes in turn and get's an opportunity to peg the top in the ground.

If you actually manage to peg the top on the ground and inflict damage, or even split the top, great. You are done for the round. If you miss the top in the ground in your peg, you must bring your spinning top into contact with the top on the ground before your top stops spinning.

This is generally done in a couple of ways.

The most desired but the most chancy and the one requiring the most skill is to loop your top string down over your top and around the peg and to give a quick lift. This will pop your spinning top up into the air. You then catch your spinning top in your palm as it descends. You then proceed to walk your top, still spinning on your palm, over and drop it on to the top on the ground. Done right, this will inflict minor damage at least.

The second method is to put your top string behind your spinning top and to pull it over to the top on the ground and have your top bump into it.

If you manage to cause contact between your top and the top on the ground, your turn is done.

If, however, your top stops spinning before you manage to bring about the needed contact, the top on the ground is taken up and your top replaces it. Now your top will be the one getting pegged.

There used to be a top season in days gone by and you could see children out pegging in the streets and on the playgrounds in the neighbourhoods and in the playgrounds at schools.

No more. Pegging has all but disappeared from the streets of the capital.

Ooooh, here is a secret for you. Pegging still thrives underground. I know it is hard to believe, but there are underground pegging clubs where lignum tops still do battle with the help of re-purposed clothes lines.

If spme shady character should offer you some contraband while you are walking the streets, ask if they know where you can get in on the next pegging game. It is a spectacle not to be missed.

(11:56 am Nov 06, 2005)

(1:29 pm Nov 06, 2005)

Kite.

Another favourite in the islands for the young and the young at heart.

Now please understand that we are not talking about cheque kiting although that too is a favourite in the islands. Only adults tend to be involved in this pass time though.

No we are talking about the kind of kites that you fly. At one time, like top season, there was a vibrant kite season in the islands. Fathers would teach their sons how to make kites and then go out on windy days and fly them together.

Kites were often made out of wooden shingles, twine, and tissue paper or news paper. Now, when your dad taught you to include what was known as a hummer or a singer and your baby was high above your head making sweet music, calling out to you sweetly above then wind. Man, then you was havin fun.

Now one of the standard designs for an island kite is the hexagonal kite. To build your singer, you could generally go one of two ways.

First let me say that the hexagonal kite of the islands is made by overlapping three sticks, say split shingles or bamboo, in the centre. Think of laying down an X with and extra stick crossing in the middle horizontally.
These are then lashed and glued together. A string is then run around the outside of the sticks. The paper is then cut a bit larger than the kite. Notches are cut out near the sticks and the paper flaps remaining are then folded over the string and pasted down. The paste is traditionally made from flour and water.

OK, back to the singer.

Making a singer, method one:

Leave the top section of the kite without paper. Now, in either method, the singer itself is the same. You make it by folding over some paper and snipping the edge. So, after you have left the top section without paper, you will have bare string across the top of your kite. Take some paper and cut two square pieces that when laid side by side are not as long as the bare string on the top of the kite. Fold each square in half and hang the folded pieces on the bare string. Paste the sides together in a manner that they can swing freely around the string and be sure and leave the bottom pieces of the paper not glued together. All you need is a thin line of paste near the string but not touching it. Now take scissors and fray the paper by making cuts from the bottom, free edges up to just before the glued section. Bam Sookie!

Making a singer, method two:

To do this, you make a slightly different kite design. You have two sticks longer than the third. You then have the two longer sticks poking up or down (take your pick) but tie the string around the edge of the kite and put the paper on the kite as if all the sticks were the same length. Now you tie another string at the ends of the sticks that poke out. Form your singers on this string as you did in method one.

Good.

So Jelli was sitting on the rainwater tank in the park, flying a kite that was humming sweetly to him as he watched Bruno rushing with the rest of the group. Now, although the kite was humming to him constantly, Jelli could not hear it except every once in a while. I doubt the kite has been made that could be heard above the sound of the junkanoo drums.

Bruno was rushing and beating his drum to this junkanoo rhythm. Each thump would hit him hard in the chest before passing through. All around him where cowbells, whistles and horns. It was a life changing experience.

Here is another secret for you. There is a small movement afoot to let non-Bahamians into the junkanoo lifestyle. Don't even think about it if the only TV show you have a chance of being featured on is "Lifestyles of the poor and unknown." No, if you're not a native and you want in on the lifestyle, you bess come loaded. You know those tourists taking those trips up to the space station? That kind of loaded and then some.

So come loaded, ask around. Don't bother asking those guys that I told you about in relation to the pegging though. If you are lucky, you may run into the right contact. One that will be able to hook you up. Come back in November, certainly by December. Spend your nights in the shack. Pasting, beating, blowing, shaking. Sleep and beach it in the day if you must.

Practice rushing.

Yeah, yeah. I know most of you big city types think you are experts at rushing, but down this way, we bring a whole nother meaning to rushing.

If you are lucky and show enough promise. You may get slipped into one of the big parades on Boxing Day or on New Years Day. The parades are at night though. Das we tings.

(2:15 pm Nov 06, 2005)

(6:25 pm Nov 06, 2005)

Superstar. "I am a Superstar. I am on top of things. I am succeeding beyond my wildest dreams. Stop, stop."

"What's wrong Beat? Come on, try again. "

"I just can't do this Jelli. I mean, I know I go over board sometimes, but I think I am too grounded in reality to talk to myself like this."

"What are you crazy? You are a superstar man. I saw you out there rushing today at the park man. There's nobody like you. I mean, these native boys beat a mean drum, but man Bruno, you are a beat man. I mean, open your eyes man. Look at yourself. Look in the mirror. You don't just have the beat, you are a beat. You, Bruno, are a superstar. And Bruno, you have grown since I first met you."

"Sure Jelli man, you have put on a few pounds too you know, no need to rub it in."

"No man, I mean, you used to just be a back beat. Now, you were one heck of a back beat, but that's what you were, pure and simple. A straight ahead, rock and roll, back beat. And back then you were great enough to change my life. Man I achieved resonance because of you. You are a superstar man. Look at you now. You have grown. You are so versatile man. What you did out there on the park today. man, I've never heard anything like it. I mean, that beat was solid. Pounding. Fantastic."

"Enough already Jelli. Tone it down before you swell my head."

"See, that's what I like about you Bruno. As great as you are, you're just a simple beat. Even when you are into complex rhythms, you are still a simple beat. Not everyone can pull that off."

"OK, so, not to be rude, but can you head out so I can get back to writing."

"Sure thing man, but do you have time to finish telling me about this ruse you are pulling this year?"

"OK, it may help me get back in the swing. Where was I?"

"You got up to telling me how you were writing a novel as zotz agian this year but that you were gonna be one of the main characters in this year's book. Man that is whacked."



"Jelli man, it get's better. In the novel that he is writing about me, he has me writing a novel for this year's nano."

"Wait, so you're writing a novel for nano as a guy who doesn't existand you are one of the main characters in in this guys novel and he has this character, you, writing a novel for nano. So, does he have you ,as his fictional character, signed up for nano yet? What is his word count and what is yours?"

"No, no, in the book, I am not signed up yet, I haven't decided if I will have him have me sign up soon, or at the last minute. Be does have me writing now though. Enough though, see ya later, I gotta get crackin."

(6:50 pm Nov 06, 2005)

Bruno sat down and started in on his novel again. He wondered when Jelli would be back to try and fill in the holes in the story he had told him. He hadn't told him anything wrong. He just hadn't told him all the twists and turns and Jelli had grown a hole lot more shrewd since they had first met all those years ago.

Skyrocket.

Skyrocket. Fireworks. Roman Candles. Fire Crackers. M80s. Pin Wheels. Sparklers.

A lot of skyrockets had been set off in the last week. A lot of dogs had bothered a lot of people during the same period.

It was not over yet either. More were going off as Bruno pursued his prose as it were. There was a bulldog barking in the backyard right now as a matter of fact. He considered going to the fridge and taking a swig of Mateus but thought better of it. It was hard to concentrate on his writing with all that barking going on. He would not get more writing done if he were to get half cut though.

---

Cang was safely back in Nassau, hiding out in the downstairs apartment of an old friends house. XXIII was there with him and the two of them were happy but concerned.

---

Bruddah Bing and Bruddah Boom were finally free, but hey were still stuck on Spanish Wells. They had freed themselves too late to catch a boat back to Nassau. Tomorrow would have to do. They thought of stealing one and trying to get back themselves, but neither of them was an accomplished seaman and they decided tomorrow would be soon enough.

(7:15 pm Nov 06, 2005)

(7:50 pm Nov 06, 2005)

They went over to the local club in the bush and watched from the shadows. They wanted to walk up and say hello, but something about the set up made them realize that this was an invitation only kind of deal. They did wonder how Cang had managed an invite though.

---

Cang was feeling a bit restless. He and XXIII went out on the patio and sat on the lay off chairs and looked up at the stars and listened to the waves breaking against the seawall. Every once in a while, a light mist from a bigger wave drifted down on the two of them.

They needed to go over what had happened but neither one of them felt up to it yet and so they lay there for a while longer. Soon though, they both started to feel a hunger. Just a normal ordinary hunger for food though. Don't go getting yourself primed for more kung fu action just yet.

One good thing about being in the Cable Beach area, there were a number of good eateries within easy walking distance.

They went to this nice place and got a great buffala cheese and tomato salad and a bottle of red wine.

Phenomenal.

Fantastic. Fabulous. Top notch. Top drawer. Great. Greater than great.

Frizzell searched for a word to describe what a great time he had had today, but, try as he might, none seemed to do his day justice.

To put it simply, he was in love. Well, the kind of love that characters in fiction seem to fall into at the drop of a hat anyway. He didn't know if it was true and lasting love, but he knew he was on cloud nine. He knew he had never felt this way before. Never been in love before.

Frizzell was a good looking curly tail. Up on Rose Island, lots of the girls had chased him around the beach. None of those small town girls had caught his fancy though.

Things were different here in the capital. These curly tail gals around here were almost another breed of gal. Stars burning bright in the firmament. And Felina, she stood out above all the others. The curve of her tail was captivating. Enchanting. She had curled it his way last night at the club and Frizzell was hooked.

All the other guys were trying to catch her eye. She ignores them all. Even ignores the King of the Mall.

Frizzell had charmed the club's owner, a nice looking young Brazillian lady into letting him play the guitar for dinner and drinks.

Frizz had played some calypso and some older rock and roll and a bit of clues. The crowds seemed to respond favourably, but Felina, try as he might, he could not catch her eye. Not until he had started in on some old country tunes.

When he started in on The Wabash Cannon Ball, Felina had started trying to catch his eye. Well, needless to say, she did not have a hard time catching it. He though once of trying to play cute, but immediately thought better of it.

Phenomenal. That's what she was. Phenomenal. That's how he felt. Phenomenal. That was his day. Phenomenal. That was his hope. Phenomenal. That was his dream.

(8:28 pm Nov 06, 2005)

Felina, for her part was enjoying her time with this yokel. He was so green it was delightful.

---

Bruno was stuck. Blocked if you will. The words were trying to imitate gunk. It almost seemed they were super glued to each other. He needed a new wrinkle. Smack. He hit his head on the table.

Well, that didn't help at all. They have a saying in the islands about certain medicines.

If it don't kill ya, it'll cure ya.

Bruno needed strong medicine to get out of his slump, but not that kind. Not the bush kind either.

I am writing my book at a fast pace.
I am writing my book at a fast pace.
I am writing my book at a fast pace.

STOP! This is not for me. I can't pull it off with a straight face. I gotta go out and get some fresh air and play some live music somewhere.

Attractive.

Ah, now there is a special word. A word of strange and wonderful power. Magnetic. Charismatic.

Bruno was walking down Bay Street, with each step, his funk lifted and his joy seeped back in. Before long, his walk had taken on a small bop even. He was light on his feet. He didn't want to make music tonight he realized. Not even live music. He wanted to dance all night to live music.

He wanted to mash a few roaches. he wanted to scull a few dingies. A little line dance perhaps. And if he could find the right someone, a slow merengue. Someone attractive. Someone whose rhythms synced well with his own natural rhythm. A little back beat merengue would suit him just fine tonight.

(8:58 pm Nov 06, 2005)

Felina was getting worried. She found herself more and more attracted to Frizz. She was even thinking of him as Frizz now and not as Frizzell or as that island yokel. This wouldn't do. Felina had big plans for her life and they didn't include getting entangled with some small town tail. No matter how attractive. No matter how funny. No matter how kind and polite. Big plans she didn't want to give up. Big plans she didn't want to put off.

The thing was, she was having fun. Great fun. Too much fun as a matter of fact. And so she was getting worried.

Frizz was having the time of his life. No really. He had never imagined meeting anyone like Felina. She was so much fun to be with it hurt. It hurt so sweet. It was delish. He was attracted to her in a way he could not describe. He felt like he was on top of the world. He felt like dancing all night. Dancing with Felina. Dancing in the dark. Dancing in the streets. Slow dancing. That sounded attractive. Come dancing. dance the night away. He felt like dancing to nine or more guitars. Dancing to a wall of sound even. To something with a beat.

Mona was in the club soaring when Bruno walked in. He heard her sweetness right away and looked around, but the place was crowded. There were gonna be a lot of people with attitudes at work tomorrow.

When Bruno got out on the dance floor, the energy level shot up from its already pegged levels. (Shhh. the pegging is going on out in the back. Wink. Wink.)

The place was jumping, but it smoothed out as well. The dancers became more graceful. The base and the drums hit a groove. I mean we are talking in the pocket here.

Melody knew something special was going on in the club tonight. Something special was taking place out on the dance floor. Something special was occurring up on stage where the band was playing better than she had ever heard them play before.

She took her game up a notch to match.

Bruno heard her again. He looked all around but could not find the source. The way she sounded inspired him though and he took his game up a notch to meet hers.

She found him. She came up from behind and put her hands over his eyes and sang. He turned around, looked her in the eyes. Took her in his arms. Dipped her.

They were dancing together in the centre of the floor when Frizzell and Feline walked into the club.

(9:40 pm Nov 06, 2005)