They will never notice a missing gargoyle

By David Grima | Oct 30, 2012

When I moved up here into the grain towers last spring, I was not thinking about the bad weather. I was deceived and blinded, I do not deny it, by the heat wave we had in March that turned the ground under my old house to a muddy swamp into which the house eventually sank.

Now I find myself wondering about my old abode, asking if there might be some room still intact under all that mud that I could excavate and move into for the winter. I will have to carry out some exploratory digging in the vertical style…

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The mental illness we call the elections is about to be over for another brief season. I remember how Mr. Churchill once described democracy as the worst possible form of government — except for all the others — and wonder if there is anything we might do to improve the whole business.

I heard a local candidate described this week as having reached a condition of what would ordinarily be described as advanced neurotic illness, but with the cause simply being the candidate’s participation in the political steeplechase.

The symptoms were described as follows: The candidate goes to bed exhausted, wakes up exhausted, forgets to eat lunch almost every day, and is expected to be everywhere all at once. Why anybody would do this deliberately to themselves is beyond my limited grasp, unless it is some sort of last-ditch self-sacrificing attempt to prevent somebody even more dangerous being elected. Yes, perhaps that’s it.

* * * * *

I saw a political ad in a paper the other day in which all the supporters of a certain candidate had consented to have their names printed, urging readers to back their particular horse. At least three of the names in the ad were listed twice. I checked.

* * * * *

In the spirit of seasonal mischief, I have been thinking of adding to the many political signs that have sprung up everywhere like deadly nightshade in a cemetery.

My signs would say things like “Vote twice on 5,” Please just say no to 11,” Vote yes on 8 and get free milk for life,” and “Please vote against me, I need the rest.”

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Sunday, Oct. 27 — Halloween up here in the grain towers over Mechanic Street — promises to be a strenuous piece of business, but potentially worthwhile. I have made some vague preparations for it.

The daylily variety called Bela Lugosi that I stole from the Old Granite Inn back in July is now in full hideous bloom, thriving on a diet of bat wings, old spider eggs, and other such nasty stuff that the Four Seagulls have been collecting across the South End, and which I have been feeding them since August. These seasonal flowers are growing conveniently in four black urns at each corner of the circular tower, and have begun to lick their lips as the air gets cooler.

There is also a mechanical talking gargoyle at the South End Market that I plan to steal and mount upon the very edge of my parapet. This store is so stuffed with delightful plastic monsters that I am sure they will never notice a missing gargoyle.

Furthermore, after much thinking alone at midnight under a crescent moon over a mug of stale cocoa, I have decided that the best way to deliver treats to passersby from this elevated situation is to take a page from the Addams Family and rig up some sort of cauldron at the west edge of the south-east tower, just north of the gargoyle.

At the foot of this tower directly under the cauldron I will place illuminated headstones and laughing skulls, (which I plan to “borrow” from Tom and Drew Woodman’s house on Crescent Street when they are not looking,) with the intention of drawing the ghastly innocents to this particular spot, and distracting their bird-like attention from what is going on directly above. I will provide bales made up of old editions of the Three Press for them to sit on, (and perhaps also for them to read what that terrible, terrible man said about South School) while I lay my plans.

Once enough of them are gathered, I will get to work on the cauldron. In it, earlier, I will have melted down all sorts of candies to their essential sticky nature, producing a swampy mess of sugary liquid that will be somewhat more fluid and swifter to respond to gravity than molasses. This I will pour over the edge of the battlements in an effort to coat the assembled hordes down below on the street.

Then the final flourish, handfuls of unmelted corn candy flung down upon the sticky masses, so that they take on the general appearance of yellow porcupines as they make their way home through our darkened streets and terrifying everyone.

* * * * *

Greetings to Dennis at the ferry terminal. I understand he reads this nonsense on a regular basis. Also to Mr. and Mrs. Robin, who apparently do the same thing. Poor lost souls, is there nothing that can be done to help these people?

* * * * *

A notable headline from the Sept. 25 edition of the Big Daily Newspaper: “Buttocks Implant Killed Woman, Probe Reveals.”

(It probably happened in Florida , where due to the complete absence of the rule of law all sorts of terrible things take place on a routine basis.)

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And don’t forget to visit on Halloween. I promise you’ll regret every moment of it.

David Grima is a former editor with Courier Publications. He can be reached at if you insist, but preferably not at all.


Comments (1)
Posted by: Drucinda Woodman | Nov 02, 2012 00:18

We're keeping our eye on you,Mr Grima

Dru Woodman

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