Who knew as I remained unaware early that morning I would later be subliminally skimming the surface of Monterey Bay for signs of a superior intelligence to emulate? Not me, that’s who. As it turned out, as it does often, I was closer to next to last to know. I thought I was merely manifesting symptoms of an acute outbreak of good health by skipping my day job forming neat rows of wry words to be mouthed by Lt Guv Gav Newsom in the campaign to pass AUMA, the Adult Use of Marijuana Act. Why not slack off when victory is tied up with such a cute knot? Prop 64 was a darling.
As it turned out, the state of unawareness to which I was attached meant I was oblivious to the powerful forces at work drawing me into a vortex of king salmon swimming in shallow pools. Powerful forces may include, though are not limited to, superior intelligence.
But, first things first.
The contoured beige robot responsible for the hushed-up murders of Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, and Paul Butterfield after Monterey Pop remained in comfortable hiding after all of these years. He sat in a straight laced chair overlooking the eleventh fairway at Pebble Beach, analyzing the twisted threads of his hoodie, automatically calculating angles, odds, and trajectories. He knew whales were nearby transmitting interference, but what were they going to do about it in his bigger picture? Fuck ’em. All his vital rivets were aligned, his flesh toned, and designer back angled away from the radiating wall that blocked the spectacular view of the ocean beyond the fortified cliffs. Spectacular to a limited human sensibility, that is. He was free to pursue his amalgams in advancing geometry and calculus without wasting valuable time posing for more of the mindless selfies needed to fit into the gated community. The backlog in his vault when correctly recycled would last for 16.344 years. By then the human stooges will be lining up wholesale for a slot on a rocket to Mars.
The high walls surrounding the beige robot were topped with broken bottles and razor wire that complemented the aluminum patio decor and kept the wastrel riff-raff at bay. It was better to be alone without human distractions. Not that his preferences were to be considered important in any bigger picture. The house was solid concrete disguised as stucco and contained sufficient quantities of lube packed into the basement storage pod to last. The stucco was painted pink enough to fool just about any outsider. The whales knew, of course, but what could they do besides blow? It did not matter in a bigger picture that the death of Mama Cass, who had never been a threat like the others to the operations of international robots, was none of his doing. As it turned out, she really did choke on a tuna sandwich. Nor was he responsible for the demise of Otis Redding, who was rubbed out in a different equation by a Milwaukee based eraser of screw components. The whales put out a big contract on her for that. Empathetic owls organized a phalanx of high flying raptors to help. She had to move way out into the low desert. He might as well be blamed for everything, though. It made good, efficient packaging sense. All that really mattered in the biggest picture was the electricity.
International robots assumed after eliminating the ungrateful Michael Jackson they would be able to conquer a vast shallow landscape via soulless techno music. But when it uh turned out to be like uh way too uh lightweight, and like shallow, like duh uh, and blew away in just most any uh weeny breeze like a speck of uh untethered dust, it caused more breakdowns in logistics than conquests of mental turf, requiring increasingly more loads of lube. Only humans could ever believe that more could be less. Inappropriate. Unacceptable. Weak. So poorly premature.
Sure, robots may be smart compared to humans, but so are masterful humpback whales plying multiple depths on simultaneous planes, along with high flying owls enmeshed at soaring elevations with rising consciousness, and the all-time longevity champions right down in the real nitty-gritty dirt, irascible scorpions, bad ass motherfuckers for 430,000,00 years. Whales have long memories that pre-date simple storage of electricity by nine million years. Scorpions don’t consider newbies as established for at least fifty million years. Naturally, bullshit like that pisses off the whales, but they don’t let it get them down. Owls continue to rise higher and expand consciousness no matter what the fuck. No highly evolved species worth the stub of a sharp tail would ever give up a mental hunt prematurely.
The humpback whale who appears to be light taupe while frolicking near the surface of Monterey Bay, unless he more accurately reflects dark ecru on the eternal color wheel, is still a big fan of Jimi. If he wasn’t constantly having so much fun in his superlative life as a humpback whale who was free to breach and blow anywhere in the Pacific Ocean he could get pissed off all over again. Then he would need to concentrate on the depths of his breathing. Five thousand feet was just about right, no biggie. But, still. He was going to get that fucking robot.
At the current rate of crumbling, the humpback whale who appeared to be light taupe calculated the cliff was going to take seventy years to fall into Monterey Bay. The weight of the radiating wall helped only a little. But he had a plan to speed it along. And I was going to be there. I was going to be going along for the ride.
Who knew that during my many expeditions searching Monterey Bay for the humpback whale who appeared to be light taupe, except when he more accurately represented dark ecru on the eternal color wheel, in order to apologize for nagging transgressions of an egregious nature by my wastrel kind, I had been blasting Jimi from the starboard bow? Not me, that’s who. I was just trying to dig it while it was happening. Coincidence? Not a chance.
But, the humpback whale knew. I like Jimi, he like Jimi, we all like Jimi. You don’t as it turns out have to be that smart like a humpback whale to like Jimi. You are allowed to be young and dumb and old and dumb like any standard human specimen. I fit as well out there skimming the surface of events on earth as anywhere. Deep may not be shallow, consciousness need not be too high, or expanding. But still.
Why else would a large and smart whale follow such a singularly small and unaware weeny member of an ordinary species like me except to lead? What other higher purpose would I be more likely to serve while breathing a small weeny bit in a bigger picture? The popular self-help literary scrolls written by and for illiterates who faithfully knew for sure the Earth was flat and revolved around the one sunny God who looked remarkably just like mama’s papa had become visibly chafed and raw in the flesh, and a lot more than a weeny tad tattered for centuries. Souls did not get no satisfaction taking lumps from feudal chumps with chains. Nothing gets saved that way but doubloons that refuse to melt down. The same old scrappy wars get fought to the same outcomes in deserts and alleys. Where do you think the irony in cartoons comes from, chumps? The barrel was scraped dry of flesh long ago. If I knew it, the humpback whales sure knew it better.
It wasn’t until I was steering my boat south of the Santa Cruz Harbor in pursuit of the ideal paradigm of a nearly obese king salmon to carve into a sacrificial steak anointed in gushing spiritual oil that I learned more and better. The humpback whale breached off the bow in a maelstrom of metaphorical taupe and looked me straight, no chaser, into one small eye.
I wiped the salt from the tracks of my tears and responded the way any small man striving on tiny toes would in a maelstrom. “Whoa, fucking, whoa,” I proclaimed with reverence.
After that, I was hooked. I felt deeply as if we had just united as mutually animate objects spiritually abutting. When the whale led, which it did, because whales do, I followed. As a follower, I was willing to be led anywhere. And he sure did know how to lead, you betcha. There were no cliffs to fall over. He was so like all metaphorically deep and cool in his element. I felt titanic wetness flowing. I felt instantaneously fulfilled with completion. I felt as if I was somehow in some way getting closer to something intensely somewhere.
When it turned out to be aground against a wall on the rocks of Pebble Beach, I felt a spiritual jolt. I eyeballed the new hole in the wall. Perhaps deep could also be shallow.
Except for the handcuffs, I felt pretty good about the day.