The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.10 – Extreme Parsimony

Image result for scrooge


‘In the jungle the miser is king.’ Cook’s translation of Lobo’s little epigram kept circling round my brain.

The Capybara hunt had simply been an assessment of our frugality.

We had failed.

A complete restructuring of habits was in order. The incident with the boots had only been a taste of Lobo’s OCD.

I understood military precision. I understood the psychological and physical necessity of ritual of tidiness. I understood the fastidious caution of the seasoned outdoorsman. But I did not understand Lobo.

What I had mistaken for reticence and a stiff upper lip was actually just energy conservation. The guy was a human sonar. Taking in every little thing and every little thing beyond the smallest thing ad infinitum. When we’d go into town for meetings and supplies he was as gregarious as anyone. He liked to sing and could play a little guitar. The instrument dwarfed comically by his cyclopean hands.

Despite speaking excellent English he opted to communicate in Portuguese more often than not. Even to us. I figure he was trying to get us used to the language. Or that he was just being an ass. It was always difficult to tell.

‘In the jungle the miser is king.’

I found the thought a touch odd. The jungle is a place of extreme abundance. Fertile and fecund beyond belief. Rain, game, and fuel was for all intents and purposes boundless. Yet we were supposed to exhibit: ‘extreme parsimony’?

It took a while for an obvious fact to dawn on me. Every calorie expended in the jungle was a huge withdrawal. Food might be everywhere and even if you are a skilled hunter you still must hunt. Rain may be everywhere but you must catch it. River water must be purified. All things that take time and energy. Time and energy that here beneath the canopy would tax an Olympian.

As such the utmost must be done to promote efficiency. Even minor setbacks like a scrape that went a little too deep could quickly escalate far beyond control. Infection, death, etc.

You had to move quick, you had to move light, and you had to move tidy. There was little room for error if any. Even in as propitious a season as we had chosen to embark. The lack of flash floods was not the lack of snakes, bacteria, or mercurial natives.

Everything must be conserved because everything took a fortune to replace.

I understood this after a few exercises. After really letting the fatigue of even the most mundane tasks seep in. But still…

“Yeah, but aren’t we gonna have 24/7 comm lines and air support?”

All I got in response was a condescending grin.


Part I – Kentucky Door

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

3.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.6 – Feijoada

3.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.7 – ‘Good food and good work…’

3.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.8 – A Good Egg

3.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.9 – Oregon HillThe Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.9 – Thera_

3.10 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.10 – ‘Thick Bushes’

4.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.0 – No room at the Inn

4.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.1 – The Union Jack

4.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.2 – The Genevive

4.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.3 – Ecclesiastes 1:18

4.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.4 – Bleached

4.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.5 – Marty

4.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.6 – Highland Deep

4.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.7 – Sunshine

4.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.8 – What is it?

4.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.9 – Thera

4.10 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.10 – Father Crespi

4.11 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.11 – Why this?

Part II – The Wizard’s Nod

5.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.0 – Thurible

5.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.1 – Parlour Tricks

5.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.2 – Tropical Brutalism

5.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.3 – The Dreamers in the Wood

5.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.4 – Les Goddams

5.5. The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.5 – Lobo

5.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.6 – Madonna

5.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.7 – Basic 2.0

5.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.8 – The Least Dangerous Game

5.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.9 – Bichanos


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The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.9 – Bichanos

Image result for anaconda amazon


There at the edge of a tributary was a huge anaconda. It was motionless and we soon understood the reason why. There near the center of the serpents trunk was a very suggestive bump.

“Does it count if we paint the snake?” Sam joked as he trained his gun on the reptile.

I had no idea. This whole exercise was very wild, very irregular.

At times I thought that Lobo was trying to put us off the trip. He didn’t seem too keen on trekking into the depths. His quiet cryptic protestations chilled me more than even the most graphic accounts of the Candiru fish.

I was hot, tired, and we were almost out of water.

As I said before we did not drink Brazilian water. Rather bottled American stuff. We were slowly being weaned onto the local sources. I really thought this an overcaution something that played into the little game of trekking through unforgiving terrain with limited resources.

Now our camelbacks and the liter bottles in our packs were getting dangerously low. This place sucked the moisture right out of you. It bled through your pores to join the liquid air.

Now that our main objective might well be compromised I felt more tired than I’d ever been before. We hadn’t received very much conditioning before he sent us on this wild goose chase.

I wanted to jump into the river. Just strip down and jump on in. I didn’t. I knew all the reasons why it was a bad idea.

So instead I inspected the ground for perils and tossed down my pack. Sat on the makeshift chair and pulled out my flask.

“Well fuck,” I said looking up at Lucas red tired face.

“You really think that’s her in there…”

“Well, it’s about the right size.”

“Sure, but it could be any number of things.”

“What if it’s a princess…” Sam said producing a cruel looking combat knife from the swordlike sheath at his side. “I haven’t fucked in days.”

“Put that away ya fuckin dork,” Lucas said with fatigue accentuated exasperation.

“You haven’t seen pussy since the womb and the womb was trying to spit you out…” Chuck attempted some raunchy wit.

“Jesus, you guys…pardon me for trying to lighten the mood.”

“The only thing that could lighten my mood is an igloo, a six pack, and your mother.” The heat really wasn’t helping my banter. I highly doubted that shoving the blarney stone square up my ass would help improve my rhetoric under these circumstances.

Graham was even creepier in the wild. I felt like he still had most of his supply. He was calm, almost bemused, but with that same mocking edge. He was pouring over a field guide completely detached and oblivious to our whingefest.

“Hey Hoyt gimmee a damn smoke!” I grunted at the specter.

“Now’s a pretty bad time to pick up that habit wouldn’t you say, Alan?”

“Now’s a pretty bad time to piss me off,” I said with a violence that surprised me.

Graham obliged.

No sooner had I lit the cigarette then I heard a distant whir.

Pretty soon a green and blue helicopter burst into sight over the tree line on the opposite bank.

“Bichanos! Bichanos! Why have you drunk all the water….” Lobos voice boomed in mocking triumph through a megaphone.

I took a drag and lifted my middle finger high.


 

Part I – Kentucky Door

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

3.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.6 – Feijoada

3.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.7 – ‘Good food and good work…’

3.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.8 – A Good Egg

3.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.9 – Oregon HillThe Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.9 – Thera_

3.10 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.10 – ‘Thick Bushes’

4.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.0 – No room at the Inn

4.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.1 – The Union Jack

4.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.2 – The Genevive

4.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.3 – Ecclesiastes 1:18

4.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.4 – Bleached

4.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.5 – Marty

4.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.6 – Highland Deep

4.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.7 – Sunshine

4.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.8 – What is it?

4.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.9 – Thera

4.10 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.10 – Father Crespi

4.11 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.11 – Why this?

Part II – The Wizard’s Nod

5.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.0 – Thurible

5.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.1 – Parlour Tricks

5.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.2 – Tropical Brutalism

5.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.3 – The Dreamers in the Wood

5.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.4 – Les Goddams

5.5. The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.5 – Lobo

5.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.6 – Madonna

5.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.7 – Basic 2.0

5.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.8 – The Least Dangerous Game


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The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.8 – The Least Dangerous Game

Image result for paintball gun

 

We were sick for a while. Though the food and water were clean our bodies required some adjusting to the local microbiome.

Of course, I was expecting this. I’d gotten a lot of background from Thornton as usual. The fact that we’d be facing gastric distress had been hammered into place by the round of vaccinations we’d undergone.

As such malaria and yellow fever were less of a worry. Though I still did not entertain too high a confidence in my immunity. Especially now that I was here.

It was so vastly different. Even the touristy parts we’d seen before heading into the ‘proper’ jungle for Lobo’s little course were forbidding.

I did not relish my discomfort as we moved through the worlds biggest hothouse. We’d been tracking Madonna for some time now. How a two hundred pound rat gets lost is beyond me.

‘The sooner we find that beast the sooner we eat.’ I ruminated as I hovered over the trigger.

Now don’t get me wrong. We weren’t going to eat Lobo’s pet. Just give it’s fur some color via paintballs.

This made me feel doubly sorry for the critter. Capybaras were gregarious. Being alone in this remote area of the Pantanal was as unnatural for a capybara as the space age colors that adorned some of the trees we’d mark with our arsenal.

It had been four hours since we’d left camp and there was no sign of her.

Capybaras only range about 25 acres max on average. But, she was far out of her range. And I really doubted that Lobo would be so lenient. Even though this was our first exercise. He wasn’t the sort to ease people into something.

I wondered if she’d find some other capybaras.

Just then I heard Sam give a long low whistle.



Part I – Kentucky Door

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

3.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.6 – Feijoada

3.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.7 – ‘Good food and good work…’

3.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.8 – A Good Egg

3.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.9 – Oregon HillThe Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.9 – Thera_

3.10 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.10 – ‘Thick Bushes’

4.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.0 – No room at the Inn

4.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.1 – The Union Jack

4.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.2 – The Genevive

4.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.3 – Ecclesiastes 1:18

4.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.4 – Bleached

4.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.5 – Marty

4.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.6 – Highland Deep

4.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.7 – Sunshine

4.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.8 – What is it?

4.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.9 – Thera

4.10 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.10 – Father Crespi

4.11 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.11 – Why this?

Part II – The Wizard’s Nod

5.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.0 – Thurible

5.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.1 – Parlour Tricks

5.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.2 – Tropical Brutalism

5.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.3 – The Dreamers in the Wood

5.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.4 – Les Goddams

5.5. The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.5 – Lobo

5.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.6 – Madonna

5.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.7 – Basic 2.0


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The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.7 – Basic 2.0

Image result for latrine

I awoke to the sound of drops on fabric. Groggy, exhausted, and unbearably hot I cursed the dawn.

Despite the planned expedition’s manifest including portable climate control, we would suffer a month of conditioning.

‘We need conditioning alright…air conditioning.’ I mused as the Jeep’s side mirror revealed my ruddy face.

My trek to the latrine was abrupted by a heavy accent.

“You did no check your boots.”

‘O Christ..’ It was Lobo.

He was wearing combat boots, cargo pants, a t-shirt, and a paddy hat. How anyone could stomach a hat, much less a woolen one, was beyond me.

“You will be killed…sick…before we start, this way…”

“Yeah, yeah…” I muttered drowsily.

His expression informed me that he didn’t like that answer.

“Look, Senhor Lobo I’m not a civ, I know this…I understand this.”

“You understand nothing.”

I really had to piss.

“I think the camp is wet enough without my fertilizing it.” I turned to go on my merry way. But I was stopped by a vicelike grip.

The sound of the rain, the feel of it, wasn’t helping the matter. A mad thought flashed through my mind as abruptly as the local lightning.

‘I’m going to kill this son of a bitch.’

The guy was bigger than the spook that had broken into the lodge. I’m a strong man and the position of Lobo and his hand would make it easy to slam him over my hip. But why alienate an ally? Why risk injury?

I relaxed.

“Look, I’ve already seen my share of drill sergeants. Lemee piss and then you can bitch me out…ok?”

He released me and I nearly jogged to the latrine. I was nauseous from my over occupied bladder.

‘This shit is bad enough at nineteen…at nearly thirty…unbearable…” I ruminated after relief.

When I returned he instructed me to get back in the tent, get out, and check my boots.

‘Yep..basic 2.0.’


Part I – Kentucky Door

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

3.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.6 – Feijoada

3.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.7 – ‘Good food and good work…’

3.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.8 – A Good Egg

3.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.9 – Oregon HillThe Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.9 – Thera_

3.10 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.10 – ‘Thick Bushes’

4.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.0 – No room at the Inn

4.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.1 – The Union Jack

4.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.2 – The Genevive

4.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.3 – Ecclesiastes 1:18

4.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.4 – Bleached

4.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.5 – Marty

4.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.6 – Highland Deep

4.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.7 – Sunshine

4.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.8 – What is it?

4.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.9 – Thera

4.10 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.10 – Father Crespi

4.11 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.11 – Why this?

Part II – The Wizard’s Nod

5.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.0 – Thurible

5.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.1 – Parlour Tricks

5.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.2 – Tropical Brutalism

5.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.3 – The Dreamers in the Wood

5.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.4 – Les Goddams

5.5. The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.5 – Lobo

5.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.6 – Madonna


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The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.6 – Madonna

Image result for capybara


Lobo grinned broadly.

“Madonna?” I confirmed.

“Si.”

He did have a sense of humor.

We watched in amusement as Madonna lilted lazily around Martin’s feet.

Capybaras are rather retiring beasts. Madonna was no exception. Black button eyes regarded us with beach bum tranquility.

Fabre chuckled and exchanged some words with Adrien in French.

“What do you frogs find so damned amusing?”

“You will not find her.”

“Come again?”

“You know last night there was a caiman under the house.”

I was getting even more confused.

“You do not remember what that means?”

I shook my head.

“It means you are going to piss away all the water and die of a heatstroke.”

“Would you people stop talking in riddles,” Chuck interjected.

“Suppose you’re out there,” Fabre said jerking a thumb at the jungle behind him. “What happens when you run out of food…more important…outta water?”

‘A question with a question.’

“Are you guys fucking lawyers or something?”

Fabre laughed pulling a paintball gun out of a chest beneath some awning.

“No, but that out there is judge, jury, and executioner.” He said as a paintball ‘thwunked’ into the depths.


Part I – Kentucky Door

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

3.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.6 – Feijoada

3.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.7 – ‘Good food and good work…’

3.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.8 – A Good Egg

3.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.9 – Oregon HillThe Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.9 – Thera_

3.10 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.10 – ‘Thick Bushes’

4.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.0 – No room at the Inn

4.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.1 – The Union Jack

4.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.2 – The Genevive

4.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.3 – Ecclesiastes 1:18

4.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.4 – Bleached

4.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.5 – Marty

4.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.6 – Highland Deep

4.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.7 – Sunshine

4.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.8 – What is it?

4.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.9 – Thera

4.10 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.10 – Father Crespi

4.11 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.11 – Why this?

Part II – The Wizard’s Nod

5.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.0 – Thurible

5.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.1 – Parlour Tricks

5.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.2 – Tropical Brutalism

5.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.3 – The Dreamers in the Wood

5.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.4 – Les Goddams

5.5. The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.5 – Lobo


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The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.5 – Lobo

Image result for cuiaba night


I suppose it is true. There is some overlap between the bayous of Louisiana and the Pantanal. These hot humid wetlands develop similar skillsets in their natives. This at least was Thornton’s stated reason for Fabre’s presence.

Apparently, he’d been here ever since he had signed the NDA about a month prior. Fabre had insisted on following us, on helping guide us, with much vehemence. And since his background was so ‘fit to task’ Thornton had arranged to have a Sheriff take over the Cajun’s precinct.

When I pressed him on why he was so keen on joining us in this mad business, he simply said that some things couldn’t be conveyed through words. He said that maybe we would see when the time was right. He said something about duty.

I recalled vaguely some fear of his about some business in his past. But decided not to press the matter any further. Not only would it do little good but I was too preoccupied with dreading yet another bout of training.

No one was about to let a bunch of recently sequestered boffins just waltz into the Amazon. No matter their background. That’s one of the reasons why Fabre had arrived so far ahead of us. He’d been here training with Martin advising him on American culture, tactics, and on us.

Martin Lobo was a recently retired C Op Esp guy. Basically the Brazilian equivalent of an army ranger. He was large, square-jawed, and distant. I did not relish the month of ‘conditioning’ ahead of us under his supervision.

I’m sure that whatever regimen he and Fabre had concocted this past month would make our fortnight in the Mojave seem like a vacation.

Fortunately, the goobers Catholic sadism had relented enough to allow us a few days to explore Cuiaba. Despite its modest size, it was a modern city with all the comforts that this entails. We had decided to make the best of it by letting Cook’s niece introduce us to her friends.

These girls turned out to be earthy goodnatured sorts, as did pretty much all the people we met, male, female, European, indigenous, or mixed. There was a sense of ease and abundance in the music-filled streets that almost made us forget the herculean task that lay ahead.


Part I – Kentucky Door

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

3.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.6 – Feijoada

3.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.7 – ‘Good food and good work…’

3.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.8 – A Good Egg

3.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.9 – Oregon HillThe Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.9 – Thera_

3.10 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.10 – ‘Thick Bushes’

4.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.0 – No room at the Inn

4.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.1 – The Union Jack

4.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.2 – The Genevive

4.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.3 – Ecclesiastes 1:18

4.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.4 – Bleached

4.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.5 – Marty

4.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.6 – Highland Deep

4.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.7 – Sunshine

4.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.8 – What is it?

4.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.9 – Thera

4.10 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.10 – Father Crespi

4.11 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.11 – Why this?

Part II – The Wizard’s Nod

5.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.0 – Thurible

5.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.1 – Parlour Tricks

5.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.2 – Tropical Brutalism

5.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.3 – The Dreamers in the Wood

5.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.4 – Les Goddams


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The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.4 – Les Goddams

Image result for server room



The air was cool. The room was dark. Servers hummed and blinked like Christmas trees. It was a surreal world punctuated every now and again by a blue glow and a little puff of vapor.

The source of the latter phenomenon was a bearded and bespectacled youth. Who was so busy clack-clacking away at one of the terminals that he didn’t hear us enter.

“Good morning Adrien.” Cook boomed.

There was a big metallic clank as the e-cigar dropped and rolled on the linoleum floor followed by a loud “Merde!”

Leo and Cook laughed at the profuse litany of French curses that followed.

“You are the reason for Agincourt.” Leo teased.

The youth fumed again. But this time in English. “You surprise me in the dark like a coward Les Goddams.”

He picked up his futuristic nicotine dispenser and resumed copying whatever it was he was copying.

“You should not be so focused. It is not French. What if we were thieves.”

“You are theifs. You steal my time. I want to finish this EH ES EH PEH so I can go home to your nieces cooking.”

I chuckled at Sam’s look of dismay. Seems like his newest crush was in the clutches of a hipstery Frenchman.

“Ah, now you comport yourself as a proper Norman.” Cook said goodnaturedly.

“Mm…and who are they?”

“Hoyt et al.”

“Ah, so you are going to go chasing fairy tales.”

Cook began to protest in Portuguese but not before the door opened behind us and I heard someone yell something in French.

This polyglot mess was about to get a whole lot more disorienting.

There was something really familiar in the tone and cadence of that Gallic lilt. As the owner shut out the veil of fluorescent light I realized why.

“What the hell…!”


Part I – Kentucky Door

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

3.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.6 – Feijoada

3.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.7 – ‘Good food and good work…’

3.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.8 – A Good Egg

3.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.9 – Oregon HillThe Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.9 – Thera_

3.10 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 3.10 – ‘Thick Bushes’

4.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.0 – No room at the Inn

4.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.1 – The Union Jack

4.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.2 – The Genevive

4.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.3 – Ecclesiastes 1:18

4.4 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.4 – Bleached

4.5 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.5 – Marty

4.6 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.6 – Highland Deep

4.7 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.7 – Sunshine

4.8 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.8 – What is it?

4.9 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.9 – Thera

4.10 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.10 – Father Crespi

4.11 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 4.11 – Why this?

Part II – The Wizard’s Nod

5.0 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.0 – Thurible

5.1 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.1 – Parlour Tricks

5.2 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.2 – Tropical Brutalism

5.3 The Sketch of Sam Monroe – Chapter 5.3 – The Dreamers in the Wood


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