Banh Mi Me My Marching Shoes


The lowdown creepy enemy, after marching up the hill for what had to feel like a hellish eternity, finally arrived. They were not us. They started out lower down. We were better. I felt prepared to skirmish in their prosaic depths of mud. My level felt pretty high up there. This was going to end up wrapped in the bag. I had the feeling. My ass was moist with insurrectionist fervor.

Though technically alone, I averred, “Now we’ll see the stuff we’re made of.”


Before the next drip of mist disappeared, two enemy guards took a third sneaky peak. Two more scoped, two noted in addition. Two dogs in matching collars choked. Teeth bared. Lights gleamed. Lines drew squares. Sides vied. Checks cleared. Systems made do. Go went. No holes showing.

Astutely I said from my distance, “Ha.”

..string theory

Soon, an army towing tanks arrived. Troops stormed. Meat seared. Loads exploded. Chunks blew. Belts snapped. Weapons stacked. Dirt dumped. Dust swerved. Dribbles dripped. Gas hissed. Fires fanned. Fat jiggled. Terrain gave. Asses wiped. A lot of fucking messing went down.

I observed, “What the fuck.” It was not a question. I had the answers I needed. A line of red flags attached to pointy stakes had been breached. Handwriting appeared on the wall.


Then, I heard, “Eww, that’s disgusting.”


As a responsible parent to the spawn of my loins, the teen twins, I called out in vain, “Everybody all right out there?”

“Not the losers.”

I knew I had nothing to worry about when it came to inspirational performance by the teen twins. The correct answers provided pure satisfaction on my side of the line. Why not swill at will? I continued to stir, non-stop. My side, the right side for all the right reasons, was about to surface as a titanic threat to the nefarious wrong side, the overly charred crusty side occupied by the diabolical oppressors in the struggle for freedom to smoke weed and ingest edibles in California.  There would be no more fucking messing around in muddy trenches for us once we fixed our gears upon solid higher ground. Being right, we had awesome tools at our disposal. All I had to remember to do was keep stirring. How can we ever forget that extremism in the defense of liberty is no known vice?

Out of breath, the yang twin ran inside and reported, “I got to pee bad.”

.hands in pants

On the high side of the line, the right reasons included my all out sanctimonious commitment to passage of AUMA, The Adult Use of Marijuana Act, Prop 64 on the November ballot, the axis upon which global freedom depended for a better groove to ride in the latest spin around the circuitous block. The teen twins understood the thoughtful and elevated reasoning that glowed beneath the flames of my nuanced position, but good. Plus, the gig paid authentic pork banh mi as a perk. I might have just as easily been eating al fresco in Ho Chi Minh City with my eyes closed. What more does a single detached man need from his distance? I was listening to Howling Wolf, mighty and loud. He made frequent growling references to a nearby killing floor. History continued to slap its groove on electric bass, no biggie. Howlin’ Wolf was presumably carrying a knife in a handy side pocket. Because why wouldn’t he? I continued to stir my batch of incipient brown beer on the stove. It was coming along. The stove was well-positioned at a key juncture. All of my favorite windows were open wide.

Indignant, the yin twin declared, “I’m going to throw some of that dirt back.”

“Free speech,” I blathered perfunctorily.

“Someone has to pay,” she demanded.

“As long as you remember when to duck.”

cement wall

The wrong side, constructed by primitive mainframes in blocks of gray pre-stressed concrete, served as home fortress to the robotic techno-dweeb who commuted daily to Silicon Valley when not straddling his sallow complicit lawn mower from lame John Deere. He was a short stout object of a man, recruited from a beta mold on a shelf at MIT, certifiably controlled 84% by remote robots on command. No day went by in which he did not execute a bang up job of wrenching precious minerals from the earth, poisoning plants, and murdering trapped animals.

Also included on the wrong side of the line was the gang of guard dogs employed by the brittle porcelain wife of the techno-yuppie dweeb to enable her pampered white cat with the pink skin to murder beautiful birds. Two dogs had been mutated in a cage and two learned how to crawl for humiliating Euros. Two others failed each day to lick their own balls. They stood guard as a unit each evening as the pampered white cat gorged on huge balls served on a gilded platter. They covered, never ducked. Little did they know that my stirring was not done.

string theory 6string theory 6

I stirred with knowledge aforethought. I knew where the wrong side belonged. I did not forget how much the right side meant to me as a Benedict Arnold to my species in the just war against clueless human enablers of venal cats who murder beautiful birds.. Without the spike in the level of spiritual degradation injected by the porcelain wife that enabled the venal white cat to murder beautiful birds, freedom for all cosmic creatures formed in salt solutions from the combustible dust of stars would be enhanced for the greater good of the expanding multiverse. Even simple base ten logic is aligned that far. Ergo, the porcelain wife was a prime target for elimination. Totally legit.

Which is why the next feelings that came over me in body and soul when the dogs started to howl were so comforting. Cogito sum. All of the essential elements were floating in deep space. I knew that HHUMH Thee Tawny Owl was on the scene.

I also knew that if the tawny owl was laughing his ass off nearby, which he had to be, because that’s what he does up high best, I was too low in elevation and consciousness to know. But I was used to that. I could still pretend to understand.


HHUMH Thee Tawny Owl turned out to be directing events from a high perch in the redwood tree near my back door. I should have known sooner, though it’s hard to stir while attempting to remember so much detail at once. He had the pampered white cat with the pink skin targeted in his magnificent sight. His holy rolling eyes followed the tell-tale trail of a banana slug. It led to a slimy hole with a dramatic arc for opening. Those big eyes sure did know how to shine.

slug 2

When the tawny owl began to hoot with the tremulous appeal of a liberated wah-wah pedal, it messed with the silicate mesh that anesthetized the decayed canine minds. Spokes spinning wheels broke ranks and ran. Sharp objects sprung. You better believe something gross imploded under thin skin. It sounded like the somnolent mewl of country music from suburban Nashville. The dogs turned tail and busted ass to get at the pampered white cat. They knocked the techno-yuppie dweeb from the molded seat on his mower into a cluster of swarming bees. He went down and stayed down. His matching white pants and belt betrayed evidence of shit stains. That would never come out in the wash. Then the first shrieking began.

The brittle porcelain wife of the techno-yuppie dweeb shrieked the shrillest in a starring role as a diva. She leaped over the fallen body of her so-called husband and scampered to rescue the white cat. Pink froth smeared on her twisted lips. She broke a heel, snagged a cuff. But she was too late. Her porcelain skin began to yellow. Amphibious scales peeled from her reddening neck. She began to shriek and pull her matching hair. She also went down and stayed down. No counting out needed. Her flush became mottled. Justice got done, but good.

The yang twin returned to the kitchen and announced, bravely, “I’m going back out there.”

“Are you sure you don’t need a pork banh mi first to maintain your strength? The brine will keep you tingling.”


“As long as you know when to duck.”

“Yeah, yeah, slip the jab, stay away from a knockout punch, bob, weave, duck. Like duh.”

I did not reveal until later how swollen with pride I had appeared to become. My cup was running over. Though the shrieking was not done I kept on stirring. I remembered my mission, seriously. I tasted, and remarked, “It could use a little more.”

It had to be even later than that, because what else is there but the here and now, as I was reflecting on the aesthetics of brown beer immersed in the crystalline state before pouring, that I was able to reflect upon the important lessons of life and life only I was sharing with the teen twins as soldiers in a just war for the right reasons on the right side. I knew there were a fucking lot of them as I began to count, and consider, even if the specifics sometimes technically abandoned me when the addled numbers tried to be added.

I said, “I know I had a point there but I lost it.”

The yang twin said, “Yeah, right.”

The yin twin, though happy to be a winner on the right side, was not satisfied with the victory. She was still angry over the desecration of sacred ground. She knew the war had yet to be won. The other side, though venal and cruel, was tenacious. She said, “What’s the big deal anyway to try and block freedom to smoke weed and ingest edibles? You smoke weed and it never hurt you.”

I said, “That’s right. Who told you that?”

She said, “You did. Lots of times.”

I said, “Sometimes, it’s not easy to remember so much that passes through my mind.”



About marclevytoo

writer of fiction
This entry was posted in animals, birds, family, fiction, humor, parenting, short stories and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s