The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.6 – Feijoada


My hell was abruptly ended by a loud, “Senhor!”

A tall, Latin-looking fellow, seeming to be somewhere in his mid-thirties was standing directly in front of me.

“May I help you?”

“Yes, you are Senhor Baird, am I correct?”

“Sure, but don’t tell the authorities.”

The stranger laughed heartily.

“Very good, Senhor Baird, very good. You still have your sense of humor…that is good. But you are seeming to be missing something.”

“Oh?”

“Si, that nasty drink, that will not fill you, you must eat!”

“I’ve never been known to pass up a meal. So are you…Proffesor…Böhm?”

 “Yes! But you can call me Leo”

My surprise passed when I recalled how many krauts had expatriated to Brazil. What I at first thought was Spanish inflection I now recognized as Portuguese. I guess Thornton had wanted to surprise me.

“Ok, Leo, is that short for Leonardo?”

“Leandro.” Here he threw up his hands in disarming ‘Comme ci, comme ça.’

But that is no matter. Leo is fine. Where are your friends?”

“Two are sleeping, one is at the pool, and I haven’t seen the fifth in weeks.”

“Ah, you are talking about Senhor Hoyt?”

“Yea,” I said, my curiosity peaking.

“He is in Virginia, where I stopped before I come here.”

Wirklich?”

“OH! Deutsch?”

Ein bißchen.”

“Ah, ok I suppose you figured out my father’s family.”

“Not exactly an episode of Unsolved Mysteries, so, what the hell is going on with Graham?”

Leo sighed. “You Americans are all business.”

“Maybe Thornton…” I smirked.

“Your friend was with Senhor Thornton, in Richmond, I could not believe what he told me…”

“Was he alright?”

“Well, yes in terms of uh…he seemed strong…but well I have always been sort of superstitious and I don’t know…he was…”

“Freaky?”

Leo laughed. “Si. I would not have said it that way but I guess so.”

So it seemed that Graham was still under whatever the hell spell he’d fallen into all those weeks ago.

So what did he tell you that was so unbelievable?” I inquired regaining the pace of the conversation.

“Hmm…” the professor looked around.

“Hush hush?”

“Oh no no, nothing like that, nobody would know what to do with the information except us.”

“Us?”

“Si, but that…all of it…is sooo much information…and…you must eat! Look at you…like a skeleton. Crazy eyes too, hungry…”

“As I said, I’ve never been known to pass up a meal.”

Excellent. It is Saturday, I will show you how Brazilians celebrate such afternoons. There is a fellow Fernando has a restaurant on Fifth Avenue just a few blocks from here, best Feijoada in the states.”

“I’m game.”

After a bit more banter I headed off to corral the other reprobates.


1.1 (Intro) The Sketch of Sam Monroe

1.2 The Cajun Prayer

1.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter One: The Cambridge Gable Scene (‘Gator is Waitin’)

1.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.4 – The Cambridge Gable Scene – (Horticulture)

1.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.5: ‘To Luckadoo Cove’

1.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.6 – ‘Is there anybody out there…’

1.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.7: ‘Jesse’

1.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.8: ‘Lungful of Bees’

1.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.9 – ‘Precedent’

2.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.0 -Calvinist Neuroses

2.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.1 – Mirage

2.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.2 – Estate Planning

2.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.3 – High Tech Summons

2.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.4 – Amazon Stonehenge

2.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.5 – Jung

2.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.6 – Dee

2.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.7 – Meeting 211

2.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.8 – Itinerary

2.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.9 – Fact and Fiction

2.10 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.10 -Kaffeeklatsch

2.11 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.11 – Catnap

2.12 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.12 – ‘One Pair’

2.13 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.13 – Reentry

2.14 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.14 – Phoenix

2.15 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.15 – Apollo and Dionysus

3.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.0 – Inherit the Wind

3.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.1 – Stardust

3.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.2 – Loyola

3.3 Chapter 3.3 – High and Dry

3.4 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.4 – One Dream

3.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.5 – Pensive


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The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.5 – Pensive

Image result for hotel lobby with clock


I was glad to be rid of that blasted tunic. Its exotic charm had faded quickly. I was glad for my jeans. I was glad for the feel of the cool tumbler in my hand.

The tan liquid soothed as its familiar spiritual warmth embraced my palate. Balm was much required. The face I’d glimpsed in the bathroom mirror was not my own.

The eyes that peered from the gaunt brown visage shone with a luminosity that could never have been my own.

“What the hell do you think you know?” I mumbled sticking out my tongue at the unkempt specter staring back at me.

Everything seemed slow as if it were suspended in molasses. I felt this profound sort of calm…as if I were a deep and silty lake, fertile, fluid, and self-contained.

The thing that brought the need for balm was precisely this. It produced a sort of tranquil annoyance at the pace of things.

I stared at the large ornate clock hanging in the middle of the lobby. It lacked a second hand. A fact that only added to my Zen ennui.

That hour hand would circumnavigate that disk four times before I could give Thornton a piece of my mind. It was odd. All my ‘spiritual’ or ‘philosophical’ or really whatever realizations, hallucinations…whatever they were. These were still present strongly. Still enthusing me with their tantalizing energy. Yet the mundane was so tightly coupled with these. That’s why I could hate the acrid hotel coffee more than love the grandeur of zero.

Zero was an Indian invention or at least is purported to be. I could see something eastern, something Hindu, being the origin. I detested Hinduism. Its caste system and obscurantism were filth that very nearly nullified the sins of the English. But, I had great love and respect for the central Asian geist, the peculiar genius of that continent, and was not at all surprised that such a people would see such a magic potential in nothingness that they’d give it a name.

This I think was the summation of what we were supposed to realize. A sort of reorienting toward the true north of naught. Not empty in the sense of void but empty in the sense of the next second. Like the missing hand on the clock in front of me, you knew it was there. You knew it in the realization of well…realization. But I digress. At this point, I at least in part fancied that I’d grasped, ‘the other meaning of inheriting the wind.’ I knew much was coming out of nothing and couldn’t wait for the nothing to unfold. So I was, pensive.

Yes, pensive was the proper word. And, I must have telegraphed it. A sin that I found easy to forgive myself because I swear. I swear that 48 hours was never such an aeon in the history of man. They say that a billion years or some equally absurd sum is like a blink in the eye of God. Well, I felt very much like something was a bit lugubrious about the normal procession of terrestrial phenomenon. Was I so full of the Spirit that my mortal coil could no longer bear the constraints of the heliocentric orbit?

I allowed the gauche absurdity of approaching Godhood to wash over me. I chuckled internally. Ah, the calculus of conceit! What a ready folly for the novitiate mystic…Nowhere was I nor anyone else approaching Godhood. A fact that for me was presently highlighted by my obsession with the redhead behind the counter.

I suppose she was more of a brunette than a redhead. Reddish brown was the color. Not that it mattered. I think that I would have been fascinated by anything female after two weeks of boys club in the Mojave. This fixation though, it was different, it was something akin to limbo.

As I said, I must have telegraphed it, my pensiveness, my ennui.

She’d done that thing. The most annoying thing that a woman can do. She’d left me hanging.

I was the liasons officer after all. So it was no surprise that I was the only one in a state to speak after our adventure. I was the one who checked us into the hotel.

At first, she was all smiles and intrigue at the grim-faced ruffians who’d trooped through the posh lobby like so many marauding barbarians. Then during the course of our brief exchange I must have said something to annoy her. Because suddenly for no intelligible reason her effusiveness ceased. She informed me that I looked tense and in need of a drink and pointed in the direction of the bar.

That’s where I’d gotten the tumbler of Scotch. I think that subconsciously I was drawn in her direction. Because I left the bar to sit in the lobby. I had plausible deniability. That’s where the newspapers were. And I was, in fact, waiting for our contact to arrive. Yet, neither of those was the real reason.

I looked up from the corporate rag and briefly turned my eye in her direction. She was looking at me. She smiled coquettishly. Or maybe it was my imagination.

‘Great,’ I thought to myself, ‘two days of wondering if I should fuck the receptionist.’


1.1 (Intro) The Sketch of Sam Monroe

1.2 The Cajun Prayer

1.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter One: The Cambridge Gable Scene (‘Gator is Waitin’)

1.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.4 – The Cambridge Gable Scene – (Horticulture)

1.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.5: ‘To Luckadoo Cove’

1.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.6 – ‘Is there anybody out there…’

1.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.7: ‘Jesse’

1.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.8: ‘Lungful of Bees’

1.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.9 – ‘Precedent’

2.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.0 -Calvinist Neuroses

2.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.1 – Mirage

2.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.2 – Estate Planning

2.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.3 – High Tech Summons

2.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.4 – Amazon Stonehenge

2.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.5 – Jung

2.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.6 – Dee

2.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.7 – Meeting 211

2.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.8 – Itinerary

2.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.9 – Fact and Fiction

2.10 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.10 -Kaffeeklatsch

2.11 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.11 – Catnap

2.12 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.12 – ‘One Pair’

2.13 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.13 – Reentry

2.14 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.14 – Phoenix

2.15 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.15 – Apollo and Dionysus

3.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.0 – Inherit the Wind

3.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.1 – Stardust

3.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.2 – Loyola

3.3 Chapter 3.3 – High and Dry

3.4 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.4 – One Dream


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Water – The Case for Stewardship (Vlog)

 


Yet another rough draft towards a more professional coverage of the state of water as a resource.


Sources and Further Reading 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MpI-FKqk0Ew

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qgLoHA4cer4&t=20s

https://www.newsdeeply.com/water/community/2016/02/11/the-secret-to-water-pricing-during-a-drought

https://water.usgs.gov/edu/earthhowmuch.html

http://www.gdrc.org/uem/footprints/water-footprint.html

https://insteading.com/blog/clean-water-human/

https://www.treehugger.com/clean-technology/how-many-gallons-of-water-does-it-take-to-make.html

http://www.worldofbeer.co.za/news/role-of-sorghum-beer-in-south-african-culture

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1046/j.1442-9993.2000.01036.x

This Strange Magic (Poem)

 

Image result for wilted
Source

 


This strange magic

The dream remains

Ah, to range through spells and mazes

Sights that dazzle though mundane

Meeting the eye that never glazes

So, it’s So, and So…

Keep the watch

The flame of sight

Don’t twist don’t stretch

Realize the right

This strange magic

The dream remains

Hanging like a feather

In the dizzy air

That knows no fear and does not care

So is to become so is to dare

This strange magic

The dream remains

Eternal is a word for fools

Their own wardens

In arbitrary prisons of stylized rules

The true bars are flowers

Of an iron that does not hold but does not break

Rising, wilting, into ever

All their graves, and all their births a lake

A shimmering light hailing neither always neither never

This Strange Magic

The dream remains

Lucid on this mulchy bed of dust and ashes

Wind we are wind we will

We never cry we always spill
Our garlands of red roses

On the air

The dream that never dozes

A perfume to greet immortal noses

Sweetest

I kiss you

I kiss the air

Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.4 – One Dream

Image result for kit fox


We dumped our gear all around the weird antique and set up our shade. The last few days were listless. Reading, dreaming, and silence, that was the trip.

We spent each night round the hole ridden tub. Impelled to be as near the thing as possible. Our four sleeping bags formed a neat little semi-circle round it.

I imagine that if someone had happened to fly by overhead they’d have thunk they’d stumbled cross some weird desert flower.

It was the whistling that did it. There was something in it. Some unspeakable allure.

We hardly ate and finished our daily assignments with desperate haste. All in the interest of laying round the brass flute and listening to its strange music. Drifting in and out of a bottomless somnolence that would take us from mid-afternoon on through to dawn.

I don’t remember what it was I’d dreamed. But I know it was profound. The memory of something monumentally important, something fundamental, still tickles the periphery of my conscience.

I do remember one dream, or whatever it was.

The fox came by on the second to last day just as evening had settled and just laid there a few paces off. Regarding us in its Sphinx-like way.

I don’t know if any of the others had seen it. As I’ve said we hadn’t spoken for days and seeing this familiar apparition was no cause for comment.

Then it spoke. It spoke as it had before, not aloud, but sort of in my head.

‘Pretty aren’t they?’

‘I suppose so,’ I answered. I knew the creature was referring to the chromatic light show that wove its way in and out of the holes with the wind.

Yea, one and the same.’

‘What?’ I asked.

‘Well, all of it really.’

‘O god, this old schtick! I thought I was past this mawkish infantile unity bit. Can’t I dream better?’

You really want to be original, don’t you? That’s the trouble with this crop. As if origin implies novelty. Does that make sense you utter pillock? Does it make any shade of sense that you should come up with some profundity – something you could call original – what does original imply? It implies origin – are you the origin?’

‘Well in some sense there is novel authorship. So I am the origin of novelty peculiar to me.’

‘And what made you capable of this then? You say you are the origin…’

‘No, I say that I am the origin of novelty.’

‘But then does novelty exist sperate from you? Did it exist before you existed? Or are you (laughingly) are you novelty itself?’

‘Yes, and no.’

‘Ah, don’t prevaricate. It’s all one and the same. Yes…in fact you hit it there. Yes and no. One and the same. Off or on? Hmm…?’

My mind was silent.

‘Lets have something different then. Something a bit more visceral a bit more limbic eh?’

With this, I was back in the dreamscape of that nap. There was the old man with his strings seated by the monolith in the jungle scene. Except this time I was not the sinewy youth. I wasn’t sure what I was at first, I knew that I was looking down at the pair, and I had a sense of great height.

After a bit, the youth and the old man’s chat ended. The former gathered up his strings and the pair disappeared out of my range of sight.

It was here that I’d realized I was a tree.

I spent some time musing about my predicament. I guess it wasn’t so bad being a tree. I felt solid. And despite being unable to move I had a calming sense of motion running through the ground beneath me, beneath the ground itself, my roots had inner motion, there was no need for an extrinsic walk.

Then she appeared. Her hair was such a raven hue that it felt in some sense blue. She was barefoot and quite devoid of clothes. I didn’t really feel any sort of lust. I was a tree after all. Though I did appreciate that she was beautiful and the flitting way she walked round my base was soothing.

She began to play a strange sort of flute. I later realized that the melody coincided with the whistling of the wind through the tub. But here in this place, it was not mere whistling but the sweetest music.

After the tune ended, she placed the flute on the ground beside me and disappeared back into the forest.

I was appreciating the warmth of the sun on my leafy crown and pondering what this all meant when I felt motion at my base. Then I had the impression of a vast speckled band writhing up my side. It wasn’t alarming, more like an embrace.

Suddenly, the scene shifted and I was in a very cold dim room in some rather itchy clothes. Graham was seated at a table next to a window through which some dwindling sunlight aided the candle atop an antique desk. He was wearing what appeared to be colonial garb. I was confused.

The man that looked up looked like Graham but wasn’t Graham.

All he said as he slowly raised his head was, ‘Hmm, looks like it’s some manner of vine.’

I don’t recall anything further.


1.1 (Intro) The Sketch of Sam Monroe

1.2 The Cajun Prayer

1.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter One: The Cambridge Gable Scene (‘Gator is Waitin’)

1.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.4 – The Cambridge Gable Scene – (Horticulture)

1.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.5: ‘To Luckadoo Cove’

1.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.6 – ‘Is there anybody out there…’

1.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.7: ‘Jesse’

1.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.8: ‘Lungful of Bees’

1.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.9 – ‘Precedent’

2.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.0 -Calvinist Neuroses

2.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.1 – Mirage

2.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.2 – Estate Planning

2.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.3 – High Tech Summons

2.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.4 – Amazon Stonehenge

2.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.5 – Jung

2.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.6 – Dee

2.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.7 – Meeting 211

2.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.8 – Itinerary

2.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.9 – Fact and Fiction

2.10 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.10 -Kaffeeklatsch

2.11 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.11 – Catnap

2.12 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.12 – ‘One Pair’

2.13 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.13 – Reentry

2.14 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.14 – Phoenix

2.15 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.15 – Apollo and Dionysus

3.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.0 – Inherit the Wind

3.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.1 – Stardust

3.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.2 – Loyola

3.3 Chapter 3.3 – High and Dry


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Chapter 3.3 – High and Dry

66" Donnelly Hammered Copper Clawfoot Slipper Tub - Bathroom


It had been a little over a week. Only five or so days of involuntary sobriety and contrived gravitas left. When we realized our predicament on the fourth or fifth day in, we were irrepressibly chatty.

Now, however, there was silence. We seldom spoke or had need of speaking. The food we’d been afforded was sparse and so plain as to almost be entirely unpalatable. Sardines, unleavened bread, wild rice, and water.The salty little fish though initially delicious quickly lost their charm. There was nothing we could do about it either. Even if we had been equipped enough to hunt, game here was so rare and flighty that it wouldn’t have mattered if we were.

True, we could trek the thirty miles back to Engmann’s house but that meant throwing away our jobs. None of us wanted to go back to living on base waiting for Uncle Sam’s next whacky adventure.

So it was that we continued our trek towards that little blip on our GPS. Forty miles from Engmann’s house, there was supposedly a tub just sitting out there. We could have already gotten there long ago. But we were required to stop and camp every afternoon, to read old dry philosophy, to copy passages by hand, and to record our thoughts and the time that they’d occurred to us.

We all started seeing and hearing things fairly quickly. That’s probably one of the big reasons for our speechlessness. We were rapt up in weird melodies, voices, and films. I knew why but it didn’t help to dispel the strength of the thing.

Going from heavy psychedelic indulgence to absolute monastic ascetics was a sure fire way to open doors best left firmly shut. Not that they’re necessarily all wicked or bad, but the strength of the things, whether fair or foul put us dangerously close to cracking.

I could swear that the little kit fox I’d glimpsed all those nights ago was following us. Most of the time I could feel it rather than see it. When I’d wheel around I’d see something matching its description but then it disappeared leaving me wondering if it was a trick of the light.

Each encounter was always paired with the thought ‘one breath, one pulse.’ There was nothing associated with it beside the memory of that critter, the words, and the profound blue of the desert sky.

We were within ten miles of objective. Not far to go at all. None of us showed excitement however. It was true that we were arriving ahead of schedule but we’d rather complete the rest of the ‘exercises’ without the monotony of walking. It had been a silent agreement. But we were far beyond excitement or anything save our own luminous thoughts; that glowed as bright as that fearsome, mighty sun, seated regal on its azure throne.

As noon approached I saw it. At first a distant speck on the horizon, with each step of my feet, or something that rather felt more akin to floating, it grew more distinct till I perceived the outline of a bronze coloured antique tub. Next to it was what looked like some sort of sign which I couldn’t read until we were right on the thing.

The thing was riddled with holes. Sitting there in the midst of absolute nothing was this antique rusted tub with its little Victorian feet.

The wind whistled strangely through the perforations.

The sign that had till now remained illegible was a rustic wooden affair, with a thin velvet scrawl that read: ‘Holy, holy, holy.’

None of us laughed.


1.1 (Intro) The Sketch of Sam Monroe

1.2 The Cajun Prayer

1.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter One: The Cambridge Gable Scene (‘Gator is Waitin’)

1.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.4 – The Cambridge Gable Scene – (Horticulture)

1.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.5: ‘To Luckadoo Cove’

1.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.6 – ‘Is there anybody out there…’

1.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.7: ‘Jesse’

1.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.8: ‘Lungful of Bees’

1.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.9 – ‘Precedent’

2.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.0 -Calvinist Neuroses

2.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.1 – Mirage

2.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.2 – Estate Planning

2.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.3 – High Tech Summons

2.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.4 – Amazon Stonehenge

2.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.5 – Jung

2.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.6 – Dee

2.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.7 – Meeting 211

2.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.8 – Itinerary

2.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.9 – Fact and Fiction

2.10 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.10 -Kaffeeklatsch

2.11 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.11 – Catnap

2.12 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.12 – ‘One Pair’

2.13 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.13 – Reentry

2.14 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.14 – Phoenix

2.15 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.15 – Apollo and Dionysus

3.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.0 – Inherit the Wind

3.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.1 – Stardust

3.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.2 – Loyola


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The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.2 – Loyola

Image result for ignatius of loyola


“That fuck!” I exclaimed examining the small note that had been stuffed at the bottom of the Vicodin bottle.

We were doing our mid-day reading and I was getting distracted by the gnawing pain in my ribs. It was sapping my will to live. There was no alcohol no balm save those little pills and now…

That miserable…Catholic…fuck….”

‘A M D G’ That’s what the note read. I’d been suspicious about the lack of efficacy. I was too clear-headed and too aware of the stabbing near my lungs.

This confirmed it.

“Huh?” Lucas looked up from his copy of Aurelius.

Ad maiorem Dei gloriam,” I muttered ruefully.

Schmidt’s features contorted into a wry smile. “O Jesus! Christian trolling…that’s the worst…especiall Thornton’s brand of it.”

“These are fucking sugar pills!” I exclaimed downing the whole bottle.

“Hmmm…” Lucas said, “I dunno Baird, if your guess is wrong …what you did just there…”

“It’s not wrong! This is bullshit…this is his usual…Spartan bullshit….”

“Probably.”

“I fucking hate stoics…”

Schmidt laughed a hearty assent, “Dry cunts aren’t they?” He remarked tapping the ancient emperors ‘Meditations.’

“Repackaged common sense and humble bragging fucking ugh…dude fuck…two weeks of Lent….that’s what we’re doing out here. Dry was the right word…he wants to dry us out….”

Lucas drew in breath sharply, he wasn’t exactly thrilled either.

“Yeah…but at this point, the best thing is probably to just go with it. It’s a trip in its own right.”

“Easy for you to say,” I remarked as I ran my fingers across my bruised ribs.

“Yea, that was a pretty nasty kick…”

Just then I remembered Sam’s clavicle.

I looked across the shadow of the mesa. Despite this slight darkness, I could tell his face was contorted in unmistakable misery.

I threw down my copy of Arrian and trooped over to Monroe.

“Find anything interesting in your medicine cabinet?”

“To the greater glory of God!” He exclaimed sarcastically miming the sign of the cross.

Bastard…” I murmured.

It all made sense now. This was a monastic rite. Thornton often waxed poetic about the ‘exercises.’ He was a profound contradiction. Despite being mired in what most would consider to be occult.. even wicked – he remained a devout Catholic.

‘Inherit the wind.’ I recalled his cryptic parting words. I remembered where I’d heard that before. It was from the book of Proverbs.

I suppose we had ‘troubled our own houses,’ the project, our own bodies, had been terribly bothered. And this was a secularized reinvention of the spiritual exercises of St. Ignatius. The isolation, the privation, the focus on abstracted philosophical reading, and the vision quest of ‘learning what it means to inherit the wind.’

This was going to be awful.


1.1 (Intro) The Sketch of Sam Monroe

1.2 The Cajun Prayer

1.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter One: The Cambridge Gable Scene (‘Gator is Waitin’)

1.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.4 – The Cambridge Gable Scene – (Horticulture)

1.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.5: ‘To Luckadoo Cove’

1.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.6 – ‘Is there anybody out there…’

1.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.7: ‘Jesse’

1.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.8: ‘Lungful of Bees’

1.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.9 – ‘Precedent’

2.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.0 -Calvinist Neuroses

2.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.1 – Mirage

2.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.2 – Estate Planning

2.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.3 – High Tech Summons

2.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.4 – Amazon Stonehenge

2.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.5 – Jung

2.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.6 – Dee

2.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.7 – Meeting 211

2.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.8 – Itinerary

2.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.9 – Fact and Fiction

2.10 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.10 -Kaffeeklatsch

2.11 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.11 – Catnap

2.12 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.12 – ‘One Pair’

2.13 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.13 – Reentry

2.14 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.14 – Phoenix

2.15 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.15 – Apollo and Dionysus

3.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.0 – Inherit the Wind

3.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.1 – Stardust


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The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.1 – Stardust


There were just four of us now. Pearce, Fabre, and Graham were gone. Pearce and Fabre’s absence made perfect sense. The NDA’s finalized, there was nothing more for them to do but go back to Kentucky. Honestly, I wasn’t sure why it couldn’t have been done on site, or at least closer than Phoenix. I guess it was more dramatic or something. Spook ‘em silent…

I was really curious about Graham though. Sure, we’d sort of grandfathered him in but he was part of the project now. Thornton knew that. He had no complaints, no grievances. It couldn’t have been cause he was a civ. Chuck was a civ and he was right beside me snoring loudly.

Which, really wasn’t an ideal soundtrack for stargazing on a desert night. Yet, despite that abominably terrestrial snoring, we may as well have been on another planet – The sky was so clear. It was exhilarating.

It felt like we were part of the sky. That it was enveloping us, embracing us, just like our sleeping bags. That’s exactly how it felt too. Rather than being frightening or lonesome or making one feel minuscule in the vast face of the cosmos – it felt like home, cozy, familiar, warm. We are stardust, after all, comprised at least in part, of the same elements as those luminous orbs burning their way through ether a billion miles hence.

‘What’s a billion miles?’ I mused to myself, my eyes drooping despite the obnoxious noise directly to my left.

“What indeed!”

‘Woah!’ I snapped my neck to the right.

At first, I saw nothing in the inky blackness. Then a faint glow made itself apparent. It wasn’t intrinsic to whatever it was. More like a reflection of the last dying embers of our fire bouncing off two dark orbs.

After a bit of squinting, I finally let my eyes relax.

Which is when I saw the outline of two outsize ears and a funny geometric sort of face.

“Come with me!” It was so loud. But I realized that it wasn’t actually sound. It was like a thought in my head. Very prominent.

The face turned and I saw the outline of a small fox.

“Well!”

I could have sworn that the critter had stopped mid scurry just as I heard this rattling in my head.

“Must be the meds,” I mumbled under my breath right as I fell into a deep dreamless sleep.


1.1 (Intro) The Sketch of Sam Monroe

1.2 The Cajun Prayer

1.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter One: The Cambridge Gable Scene (‘Gator is Waitin’)

1.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.4 – The Cambridge Gable Scene – (Horticulture)

1.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.5: ‘To Luckadoo Cove’

1.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.6 – ‘Is there anybody out there…’

1.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.7: ‘Jesse’

1.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.8: ‘Lungful of Bees’

1.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 1.9 – ‘Precedent’

2.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.0 -Calvinist Neuroses

2.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.1 – Mirage

2.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.2 – Estate Planning

2.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.3 – High Tech Summons

2.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.4 – Amazon Stonehenge

2.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.5 – Jung

2.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.6 – Dee

2.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.7 – Meeting 211

2.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.8 – Itinerary

2.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.9 – Fact and Fiction

2.10 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.10 -Kaffeeklatsch

2.11 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.11 – Catnap

2.12 Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.12 – ‘One Pair’

2.13 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.13 – Reentry

2.14 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.14 – Phoenix

2.15 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 2.15 – Apollo and Dionysus

3.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.0 – Inherit the Wind


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