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Feeling rather non-Euclidean

Knotted on January 8, 2023.

On Monday, I was feeling rather non-Euclidean, so I donned my Möbius belt and went to town. I took a brisk stroll down one street after another, but become quite peevish upon discovering they all not only looped back on themselves, but I ended up upside-down each time I made a round trip. Walking on my head was no fun, nor did my burnt-umber fez fit my feet very well (nor my shoes my head). Worse yet, no longer owning that old isosceles valise, I carried my hexaflexagonal briefcase instead—but it kept turning inside-out and spilling all over the sidewalk.

And worst, everything that wasn’t nailed downed fell upwards because “up” was the new “down.” I had to cling to the sidewalk for dear life.

Fortunately, after I circumambulated the town backwards, I found everything to be upside-up again. Satisfied, I returned home, hung my Möbius belt up in my closet, and vowed to never wear it again.



When I awoke yesterday, I discovered I needed not only a shower but an eyewash: My eyes stank. The noisome ocular odor was so bad I could see it—cartoonish stink lines rising into the air. I went into the bathroom and found my shower stank. I ran downstairs and found my staircase stank. I reached the kitchen and found it stank too. And still my eyes stank.

The kitchen sink emitted an odor like a rancid pig groin in the August heat. My refrigerator smelled worse than a tire fire smothered with exploding whale guts. I scurried about frenetically seeking a single room that didn’t stink. I failed. Everything was malodorous. Everything reeked. Everything stinked, stank, and stunk.

I tried thing after thing, trick after trick, but nothing would dissipate the comprehensive mephiticism embracing me and my surrounds. I stopped my nose with a pair of nose-hair plugs, to no avail. I stopped my ears with a pair of ear-hair plugs, but my ears didn’t smell so that accomplished nothing. In a fit of frenzy, I then emptied every can of Lysol I possessed. But I mistook my cans of Great Stuff™ for cans of Lysol and created quite the sticky pickle for myself. A sticky, foamy pickle.

It was yet another surreal and umbomitable adventure: Fraught with failure, wrought with insanity, it came to naught but grief and misery for yours truly (and the 717,000 stinkbugs I squished in one attempt at up-smelling my home).



On Friday, a man knocked on my door. When I answered, he announced he was a door-to-door salesman selling an encyclopedia of vacuum cleaners. I let him ramble on with his double-obsolete spiel for multiple minutes, only interrupting him to ostentatiously scratch my gonads. He maintained his aplomb throughout, as did I; indeed the man had the esquillious tillinghastery of Richard Uptown Pluckman and even the serene frambouillais of William Hazlett Upson. My balls sufficiently scratched, I let him continue. And continue he did, extolling the virtues of the Encyclopedia of Britannic Vacuum Cleaners and the necessity for every middle-aged man in middle America to own a set. After multiple minutes more, and several seconds, I thought it appropriate to begin clipping my fingernails, then my toenails, then various and sundry other clippable things (for I had, in the interim, undressed fully).

Finally his spiel was complete—the man was done—and showing no visible signs of perturbance at my nakedly erupiscent behavior. I took this as a challenge and upped the ante. While maintaining the posture and poise of an orangutan engaged in vigorous coitus, I asked if his encyclopedia set would make good kindling—or fish wrap, birdcage liner, or horse toilet paper. With his hand melodramatically upon his chin, the salesman thought about it a moment, then admitted he’d never thought about it before.

“Well, now you have!” I blurted triumphantly and slammed the door.

Unfortunately I was on the outside of the door too. And it was locked. I had to chase the man off and then crawl back in through a window. (Fortunately, I have many.)



On Thursday, someone flung a newspaper at me, so I was forced to pick it up and read it. The Bouillabaisse Boulevard Bulletin was one of the few paper papers left in print in town (all the other papers had switched to plastic). They were desperately trying to maintain their readership levels, so I really couldn’t fault them for their aggressive, in-your-face, and at-your-forehead delivery technique.

I could however fault them for that mean, mean review of my blog they printed last week—and I would fault them for it ’til the day I died. This paper would soon be wrapping fish, lining birdcages, or wiping poopy horse bums.

But first I stood on my stoop, sipping my cold-turkey coffee and perusing the ungrulious paper. The Sun was just peeping over the horizon and the trees were alive with birdsong—a flock of Canada geese had just landed up in the trees and were honking it up.

The top story in the Bulletin lambasted the Mayor for still refusing to remove the Hitler statue at the corner of Hegelian Avenue and Strontium-90 Street. I turned the page. The next story lambasted someone else for something else. It was followed by a full-page ad for basted lamb at the local McGonigle’s. I flipped through the rest of the paper absentmindedly, preoccupied by thoughts of my next task for the day: Fusing six sigma with lean methods to eliminate the gap between my strategy and my objectives.



I’ll never know how or why… but I was amazingly successful. I didn’t even need all of the ocelots I had gathered in preparation for the attempt. It was truly phlogistically fantastical.

That task complete, I set about satisfying sundry other needs, wants, and id-driven urges I had amassed throughout the week. Becasue was again visiting her family in Squirrel Blind, W.Va., which made some of this difficult—but if there’s a man alive who knows how to deal with difficulties in spectacular and mind-blowing ways, it is the Grand Pnårpissimo. (As an aside, I was nowhere near the capital this week. You’ll have to blame that goat-muzzling accident and the ensuing hotdoggerel catastrophe on someone else. It wasn’t me!)

I still didn’t know what a Kernodle was, but now I knew I wanted a noodle. Any dish made with noodles would do: A plate of spaghetti, a small bowl of ziti (but only with lines), a large bowl of lo mein, a huge bowl of ramen, or even some finely buttocksed veal Parmesan.

“But buttocksed veal doesn’t have noodles,” a porcupine reminded me. My new porcupine friend was so helpful. He had recently crawled into my home through my under-sink window and set up a nest in the dishwasher. I thanked him kindly, calmly shut the dishwasher lid before I got a faceful of quills for my disgrubious effrontery, and went back to searching my emphatically palatial abode for noodles (of any kind) or buttocks (of the edible kind).

I still didn’t know what a squifflous dinglehorst was, but now I knew I wanted a set of terrycloth sputter-nutters. But where could I find terrycloth nowadays? Ever since the Book of Revelation came true back in ’87 terrycloth been wholly unavailable on doG’s green Earth. The Second Coming had stricken all terrycloth from Creation—Jesus hates dishrags. Perhaps the ancient insect civilization that spanned the world 818,000 years ago knew where to find some, but I had no idea how to get in touch with those buggers!

I then discovered I lost my house keys on that Monday Möbius trip. I went back out to search high and low, up and down, to and fro, left and right, back and forth. I was able to find a set of horse keys and even some hose keys, but my house keys were long gone. Perhaps they had fallen down a storm drain or been eaten by a stumblebum—indeed they were made out of an edible brass alloy. I shrugged, returned home once again, and slunk back into my palatial abode via a window I always leave open (for just such slinking).



The next day I resumed my search for my house keys. It was easier to look for them in my front yard, so I decided to look there. What I found however was a grunt-gorkle on a burpcore pole at the edge of my yard! Writing on it bore an eerie resemblance to the ancient Turdaș–Vinča script, which my grandpooty had deciphered in 1962. He shared the secrets of that ancient language with me before he died—and no one else. That knowledge had served me well all these years. It helped me baste my turkeys and clatter my floozies. It helped me remember how to spell Julius Cæsar’s cognomen, agnomen, and gnome-gnomen. It even helped soothe my chronic drapetomania and ergogerontopathy.

But I’ve said too much about that script, so I’m done for this week.