Because pigs. That’s Will, the runt of the litter born as we arrived. He died the next day, alas. In the middle is cubed bacon for the beans. On the right, still life with pork roasts and banana.
As legend has it, whether true or
Perhaps a tallish tale, John Back
Was dry and needed more hard liquor
Than what he’d hid beneath his sack.
He barged aboard a tied-up steamer
And found a case of gin, some creamer,
A loaf of cheese — that was enough:
John grabbed the gin and other stuff –
As much as his poor arms could mule –
And would have left the ship, but that
Was not his fate; instead a rat
Appeared and challenged him to duel,
Produced a tiny pistol, fired:
John Back lay dead, wiped out, expired.
With sly humor he shows us our strategies for solidifying and shoring up these tenuous Selves. We can, for example, seek status (my Self is better than yours). We can quiet the self’s discomfort through connoisseurship, associating the Self with what it owns: a Stella McCartney dress, a $2500 fixed-gear bike. These moves are nothing more than attempts to give the Self an illusion of reality. Seeing through it is the real “help” Percy offers.
The fire had crossed Second Avenue, and was heading up to Third. Smoke could be seen in Tacoma, and the roar of the fire heard for miles. Help had been called in from Tacoma, Portland, and even Victoria, B.C. …
Realizing their geoduck was cooked,
Moran raced into the offices of the Sunset
Telephone-Telegraph Co. and unhooked
the contraption himself. “Get
me Tacoma!” And Portland and Victoria,
B.C., and then, remembering a noria
he’d seen on the faraway Kickapoo
River, put out a call for someone he knew,
had heard legend of, anyway—a Wisconsin
firefighter by name of Paddy or Mick
O’Somethingerother, who with a single lick
and a little spit could put out the fire in
Hades itself. “The name? People are dyin’
here! Wait; I got it … Get me O’Brien!”