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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The Happydale travelogues: Dr Einstein I presume

This is the second installment on some fictional stories based on persons and adventures I had on a recent trip I took. Naturally I used no one’s real name and changed the names of places I went. Here is the second in a series I call The Happydale Travelogues;

Dr Einstein I presume

The next day I got up and Ted’s aunts made us breakfast. They really knew how to cook, making us scrambled eggs, beacon, toast and coffee. As we sat at the old wooden table, we both began to talk. Ted wanted me to meet some of his other mentors.
“You must meet Dr. Einstein,” Ted said. “He is our local psychiatrist. He’s a doctor and a darn good one. He’s helped me a lot.”
“But you’re still Theodore Roosevelt,” I reminded him.
“OK! But I used to feel bad about it. Dr. Einstein convinced me that religion would help me feel better about myself and even if I stayed a president, I can trust in Jesus.”
“You’re really getting into this religion thing I see.”
“It isn’t just that. Dr. Einstein taught me that a person has to redefine himself. I needed structure, routines and a dedication to staying sober and avoid all types of intoxication at all times.”
“I see. So Pastor Phlasch taught you religion and Dr. Einstein taught you structure and discipline.”
So what else could I do but meet Ted’s good friend Dr. Einstein? We went down the street to a large yard, with a small two room house, just bigger than a trailer would be.
Now I have no idea what kind of schooling or degree Dr. Einstein has. When I met him he was short, thin and had black hair. He had some kind of a German sounding accent and I believe he said his first name was Rococo. Or maybe it was Herman. I’m not actually sure. Actually he sounded a lot like Peter Lorre.
“So you are Ted’s close friend?” Dr. Einstein said.
“Yes I am,” I replied to the rather sweaty looking man. He took out a bottle of Schnapps and took a swig.
“Are you sure you know what you are doing?” I asked him while he was guzzling the Schnapps..
“Don’t worry. I’ve performed delicate surgery after drinking this stuff. I never lost a patient yet.”
Dr. Einstein was sitting behind a wooden bench with two sticks and a sign up above that said in black on yellow letters; “The Doctor is in.” Then there was a little can with a slit in the top and a label on the can that said “50¢.” The little booth sat shaded between two large trees.
“Are you competing with Lucy from the Funny Pages?” I asked.
“No,” he answered. “I charge 50 cents. Times have changed since Lucy charged a nickel. I have to factor in inflation.”
I thought it was kind of strange, but in this town that was the case for everything and everyone. I put the two quarters in the can. Then he handed me some booklets with those answer pages that had a fill-in-the-dot section, so they can be read by a machine.
“How many questions are there?” I asked.
“Well you can always have Ted help you with filling in the dots as long as you answer your own questions on the test.”
“Well when you put it like that, I guess I’ll fill these out.”
Ted and I worked late into the night filling out the questions. A lot of them were the same questions reworded a little. Others were obviously designed to see if the test-taker was paying attention, such as “have you been on several magazine covers this year?” Ted was fairly good natured about it. We drank lemon aid and tea into the wee hours of the night. Then next morning after breakfast we took the pages to Dr. Einstein. He was still sitting at his desk with his feet up. He took the papers into his house and then came back with a printout.
“You don’t like authority much do you?” Dr. Einstein said.
“That’s true,” I said.
“You don’t like to follow the rules much do you? You kind of feel you can just break them if it suites you?”
“Well, I guess I feel that way at times.”
“You have a chip on your shoulder and you feel the world or society has mistreated you?”
“Well….at times…maybe.”
“I know what your problem is. You’re a miscreant with no redeeming social values. Why you don’t even have any serious religious beliefs!”
“I’m a dedicated communist!” I blurted out.
“There are fewer and fewer of them every year. You have chosen to be loyal to a community that lives as aliens among us.”
“There are chapters of various communist communities all across the country. Many are working with the Occupy movement or the anarchist black bloc actions,” I retorted back.
-“And yet since the fall of the Russian Empire there are even fewer communists and they are just a fringe element in our society. No one considers any of them relevant today.”
-“Well maybe you haven’t heard of the Red Corridor in India? It’s an area that takes up about a third of the country and it is controlled by several communist parties that are working together to fight a guerrilla war against the government. In some parts of the country they ARE the government. AND there are thousands of those people.”
-“I’ve never heard of that!”
-“Look it up on Google. And while you’re at it, check out the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) which won an election a few years ago, after almost 10 years of guerrilla war. Now there are two legal communist parties that hold most of the seats in the Nepalese government and there is a new communist Maoist party that plans an insurrection. Let’s not forget the Communist Party of the Philippines and their New People’s Army, which has made lots of gains in recent years and now controls a large section of the country.
And in Europe, with the near economic collapse, communist parties are much bigger and more active then they have been for year. Europe has always had more socialists and communists and they have always been more active. So in the rest of the world we are not an alien community at all. We fan all over the world. We all have solidarity with each other and communism is more a belief than it is a state, such as Russia or China. If you have certain ideals, they don’t just go away because a country collapsed.”
By now I could tell Dr. Einstein was not amused by my belief system. He seemed rather angry and loathsome.
“You need to get back to your religious roots,” he said. “You need to ditch those idealistic ideas you have and join the rest of society. Join a church!”
“Um…I don’t think I want to,” I said.
“Then you’ll remain a bitter malcontent, who blames your problems on everyone else and you have made yourself an enemy of this great country and God himself.”
With that he through his can of coins at me.
“Get out of my yard,” he said and then chased me to the street.
We walked back to Ted’s House.
“Boy that guy is a hot head,” I told him.
“He’s not for everyone,” Ted replied. “There are a lot of people he just doesn’t get along with.”
“Does he get along with ANYONE?”
“Oh yes. Some people swear by him. He’s helped me a lot. It just depends on the person, I guess.”
“Wow! Someone getting help from a guy like that! I’d like to see that. It is just hard for me to imagine.”
I guess that guy would work out with someone a little less rebellious than I. I can’t help it if I’m a life long rebel. To a large extent I’m a product of the society around me. Perhaps if my life had gone differently, I would not have become so radical. But life is what it is so I am what I am, a product of my surroundings.
-សតិវ អតុ

1 comment:

Jami Nixon said...

Very nice gotta love Dr Einstein lol