Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 218

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 218

…Whack, just like that… I like whack, whack is a good word…

Back where all the Holy Rollin’ action is going to take place, Comiskey Park home of white soxthe Chicago White Sox American League Baseball Team, the team is on a road trip after opening the season on April 17th against the Saint Louis Browns. They have started well, 5-1, considering they finished with a 60-94-2 record in the 1950 season and 38 games behind the dreaded Yankees. But hope springs eternal with each new season. Surely Nellie Fox and Minnie Minoso will lead them to the World Series; surely.

Even more surely, is the fact that the baseball facility must get prepared for a good old-fashioned bible meeting from the right Reverend Billy Graham.

“I’m here to deliver the wine,” a burly man wearing a Wirtz Beverage shirt pulls up the rolling rear door of his delivery truck, revealing not a bottle or two of wine, but 6-55 gallon oak barrels of ceremonial spirits. He muscles the vats onto the loading dock, with the aid of a barrel-mover, an ingenious dolly invented by someone with a bad back, brought on my muscling wine and beer barrels by hand.

“How do we get the wine out of these things?” asks vending captain Joseph Winters looking at the barrels like they are a big mystery. (Note to the wise: They don’t serve wine in hell)

The expert in potable alcohol produces six spigots and a wooden mallet. “Do you see this cork here on the bottom? All you do is position the spout in front of it and give it a steady whack and bam it pushes in the cork and takes its place, 1-2-3.”

“Whack, just like that… I like whack, whack is a good word.”

“I’m not telling you what to do, but if you put the wine into smaller containers, like milk pitchers, it will make it easier to dispense.”

“Yes, we want to make sure everyone gets a good sip! You never know, it may be their last.”

The delivery guy thinks to himself, ‘A little wine won’t kill anyone.’


Constance Caraway P.I.

Forever Mastadon


page 182

Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 213

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 213

…”You can certainly count on me!” – Ready, willing & evil…

Ready & Evil-001

Comiskey Concession-001

“I like you Winters, a real go-getter you are,” the director of concessions for Comiskey Park has identified our villain as a key employee (or the only one to volunteer to do something that isn’t on commission). “That event on the 28th, the one with all those teetotalers, well they need 350 gallons of wine of all things. We will be handing out 45,000 1oz. servings of Manischewitz and I – would like you to be in charge of that.”

“You can certainly count on me!” -Ready, willing & evil.

“Great, I thought I could count on you – you will need to fill, seal and be able to distribute every one of those portions in 15 minutes – that will take a miracle!”

“How do we collect the money?” Winters/Penty is playing dumb. Hell, if churches charged cash money for Communion wine, there would be significantly fewer churchgoers, the ultimate result/goal in his wicked world.

“You’re a  funny dog,  Winters! When exactly was the last time you were in a church,” implying that he didn’t have a clue about lightning striking when he enters a place of worship.

“I don’t believe in going to church. I have better things to do with my Sundays.”

“Wow, at least I’m a two-timer.”

“You cheat on your wife? Great – I mean that’s a shame – You don’t look like the type.”

“No stupid, I go to church at Christmas and Easter, hence two-timer, get it?”

Angry

“I’ll do the job, but never call me stupid again,” he states. ‘I can back up my threats you ignorant human,’ goes unstated.

His poor soak “boss” has no idea what this greasy guy is up to.


Constance Caraway P.I.

Forever Mastadon


page 179

Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 210

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 210

Chapter Eighteen

THE SPREADING WORD

…“How can you make money by giving away free wine?” Devil Dollars aren’t redeemable…

DEVIL DOLLARS-001

On the heels of his great mischief of on March 12th, Pentateuch learns of the Billy Graham Crusades returning to Chicago. “They must be suckers for punishment.” What manner of tomfoolery can the Dark Deceptor unleash on the innocent and unsuspecting that plan to be there in late April? An infectious disease from 1000 B.C. may affect the greatest number of them, but if it gets out of control, too many of his best bad people might become ill. He is in need every rotten tomato in his shrinking basket.

Good thing for him, he can redeploy the Joseph Winters ruse, this time Mr. Winters will get a job as a concessionaire at Comiskey Park. Penty is so versatile that it’s a shame that he doesn’t use his talents for good.

Concessions

And even though his Great Deception monopoly has been pretty much shot to hell, his tormenting spirit lives on and if he can muck up all this revival nonsense, like he has done a number of times before. That would certainly make it a banner year for him.

There are no beer sales at this Major League ballpark, tailored just for the crusade Christian clientele. “How’s an angel supposed to make a decent wage?” You must keep in mind that Pentateuch is an Angel of God, although falling as far as possible from His good graces. His current lament applies to how he can poison as many of the 45,000 as inhumanely possible. “Poisoned bodies or poisoned minds, how did I do it back in 1904?”

(There have been other revivals since 1904, mainly in the British Isles and Africa, but the legacy of D.L. Moody was strong as he passed the torch on to others. But it is hard to keep the momentum going when you attempt to evangelize the entire planet; a noble but improbable undertaking.)

This time around, Penty/Winters have discovered that the concessionaires will be handing out something for free. “How can you make money by giving stuff away?” Devil Dollars aren’t redeemable.

Communion is the heavenly handout and it is only given to those who are right with God. This means that the vast majority of the forty thousand plus will eat a hunk of stale bread and drink a miser’s portion of Manischewitz wine; hmmm, the putrefying possibilities.

Libbyites-001The what-ifs and why-nots are all point toward mass mayhem. After all, what does he have to worry about? Those damned Libbyites think they have won, above all that witch Caraway; the one human that has plunked herself in the middle of his best laid plans…….but even she is given to go off and cavort with that grounded Texas fly/playboy. (She doesn’t even know -nor does he – that he has a kid in Brazil.)


Constance Caraway P.I.

Satans Place-001

Forever Mastadon


page 176

American Oddities – WIF Fun Facts

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Facts About

America

That Make

No Sense

to Foreigners

America. It’s one of the biggest countries on Earth, both in terms of population and sheer size. It’s the planet dominating superpower; the heaviest hitter where culture is concerned; a place known by nearly every single human on the planet… and, to all but the 4-5% of humanity who live there, it makes absolutely no gosh darn sense.

 See, despite its cultural clout, America still seems deeply weird to foreigners. And we don’t just mean people who come from repressive kingdoms and tin-pot dictatorships. Europeans, people from Southeast Asia, Australians and Brits all find yuge chunks of life in the good ol’ US-of-A beyond comprehension. If you were born stateside, the following might not seem super crazy to you. But trust us, every single foreigner is reading this with their jaw dangling open and their eyeballs popping out.

10. US Toddlers Shoot One Person a Week

Americans sure love guns. The US has the highest rate of gun-ownership on planet Earth, and the least-restrictive gun laws (only Switzerland comes close). That’s all thanks to the 2nd Amendment, which has been the subject of near-constant debate since being written.

But it’s not the sheer number of guns in America that really astounds foreigners. It’s the crazy things that leads to. Things like US toddlers shooting one person a week.

There’s literally no other country on Earth you could write that sentence about. Even countries that are swimming in guns, like Serbia, Norway, and Switzerland, don’t have toddlers blowing one another away. To be fair, they have tiny populations, but, to be even fairer, c’mon buddy. US toddlers have shot on average one person a week (including themselves) for the past two years. Even war zones don’t have numbers like that.

More bizarre still, America keeps on arming its toddlers. In 2016, Iowa made it legal for babies to handle loaded guns. That’s right. The guys in the Hawkeye State elected to arm the very babies that are trying to shoot them. How’s that for hubris?

9. Bestiality is Still Legal in 9 US States (but premarital sex is outlawed)

Despite this being 2017, plenty of US States still have sex laws on the books that are… unenlightened, to say the least. And by that, we mean they were seemingly written by two guys named Festus and Bubba while necking with their pet hog Clancy.

Incredible as it may seem, there are nearly ten US States where it is still legal to have sexual intercourse with animals. We say ‘nearly’ ten, because one’s the District of Columbia (not a state, kids!). The other nine are Hawaii, Kentucky, Nevada, New Mexico, Ohio, Texas, Vermont, West Virginia and Wyoming. In addition, plenty of states still only consider bestiality a misdemeanor.

This would be odd enough if the US was a spectacularly licentious place, but it’s not. In addition to allowing you to marry your best-est sow, four states still outlaw either premarital or extramarital sex, or co-habiting with your partner prior to marriage. While the laws are effectively never enforced, the fact they’re still on the statute books attests to America’s unique mix of religious piety and deep-seated desire to mimic the guys from Deliverance.

8. The Highest Paid Public Employee in 39 States is a Sports Coach

Go to any other country in the Western world – Canada, Germany, the Czech Republic, New Zealand, wherever – and the highest-paid public employee will be someone working in a selfless capacity. They’ll be the guys and gals running universities, or public hospitals, or the local council. America, though, laughs in the face of such devotion to the public good. Instead of rewarding headmasters or doctors or teachers, the highest public pay package in 39 states goes to sports coaches. Specifically, guys coaching football or men’s basketball.

We’re not talking comparatively small sums, either. The salaries involved would be enviable in the private sector. University of Alabama football coach Nick Saban, for example, rakes in over $7 million, plus bonuses, likely making him one of the highest-paid public employees not living in a corrupt dictatorship. For those from outside the states, this seems less extravagant, and more like an absolute inability to get priorities right.

Only Alaska, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, Montana, New York, Nevada, New Hampshire, Vermont and both Dakotas refuse to award their highest public pay packet to a football or men’s basketball coach. Interestingly, both Hawaii and Vermont, as you’ll remember from a second ago, still technically allow bestiality. We’re really not sure what to make of that.

7. Over Half of All Americans Don’t Hold a Valid Passport

In 2014, polling company YouGov revealed only 8% of Britons had never left their country of birth to travel abroad. While this is maybe not all that super-impressive (Britain is tiny and France is close), it puts the US to shame. The same poll found only 50% of Americans would admit to ever having left the country. That’s nearly 160 million people who have never been to Canada or Mexico, let alone Europe or Asia.

For people who were born in Europe, that’s almost like saying you’ve never seen a glass of water. The idea of not going abroad from time to time is alien. In places like Germany, over 90% of the population hold a valid passport, and you better believe they use it.

But that’s Europe, we hear you cry, it’s a small continent with, like, a bazillion countries. Well, first, we’re pretty sure you’re exaggerating there, bud. Secondly, look at Australia, a country nearly as big as the US, and more cut-off from the rest of the world. According to official data, one third of the population goes abroad every single year. That compares to 50% of Americans over their entire lifetimes. Clearly, the US is a travel-averse country.

6. 30% of Americans Prefer Saving Money to Vital Medical Treatment

Compared to other developed nations, healthcare in the US is expensive. You can blame that on too much Obamacare, or not enough of it, but the fact remains that public systems, private systems, and public-private systems elsewhere in the world all deliver better service at lower cost. This alone can seem staggering to foreigners. Then there’s the American attitude to health. Faced with a serious illness or injury, around 30 percent of Americans would rather walk it off than pay for treatment.

 This… simply doesn’t happen elsewhere. Norway has the second most-expensive healthcare in the world, and pretty much no-one there avoids necessary treatment. Japan has an insurance-based, private system with payments often covered by employers, just like the US, and people don’t skip out on medical care. To find other people choosing money over hospitalization, you have to leave the developed world behind and start poking around in poorer countries where wages are low and healthcare unaffordable.

We’re not trying to rag on American healthcare here. America has some of the best doctors and hospitals going. But the idea that you’d choose money over health (or that you’d have to choose)? To non-Americans, that’s insane.

5. 7 States Have Custody Rights for Rapists

OK, let’s turn to some really, really dark stuff now. There exists a certain subsection of guys who like to rape women. Occasionally, this results in their victims getting pregnant. Depending on where they live and their religious convictions, the women may then decide to carry the baby to term. Now, here’s where it gets creepy. In around 7 states, it’s perfectly legal for the rapist-father to sue for custody of his newborn child.

Imagine that for a second. You’ve been violently assaulted, gone through the hell of guilt and self-recrimination, been courageous enough to bring the resulting baby into the world… and now you’re forced to watch as the D-bag who hurt you decides he wants to be a father to your son/daughter. Well, if you live in Alabama, Mississippi, Maryland, New Mexico, North Dakota, Wyoming or Minnesota, that can totally happen.

In addition, there are 20 more states where it might be legal. In Indiana, for example, you can only block the rapist from seeking custody if you remember to do so within 3 months of your baby being born. This is some seriously dark stuff, and we guarantee that if you mention it to anyone from elsewhere in the developed world, their jaws will drop so low they hit the ground. Sure, some Middle East states may have even-worse laws, but that’s not really a benchmark to aspire to.

4. America Has More Self-Identified Patriots than Anywhere Else on Earth

In July 2016, Gallup released the results of their yearly patriotism poll. They found 52% of Americans call themselves “extremely patriotic”, the lowest level in polling history. The news triggered a slew of introspective articles by American writers, wondering what had gone wrong. For those reading elsewhere in the world, it felt like stepping through the looking glass. 52% is such a good score it leaves other countries eating the USA’s dust.

Such levels of patriotism simply don’t exist in the rest of the developed world. In a similar survey by YouGov, only 13% of Brits thought their country was “the best in the world.” That was the highest score in the EU. Germany and France got only 5% each. The second and third highest-ranking countries globally, India and Australia, scored 34% and 36%. But the US? The US busted through the 40% mark, with an additional 32% claiming America was at the very least “better than most other countries.”

For the majority of foreigners, the idea of showing US-levels of patriotism is simply alien. You will never see a flag in every yard in any other country on Earth. But that’s the US public for you: optimistic to a tee. Even if they’re unhappy with their current government, folks still believe that the idea of America itself is worth believing in.

3. Americans are More Likely to Get Bitten by Other Americans than Rats

The stereotype is that Americans likes three things: football, fast food, and violence (often all at once). It’s true that America’s murder rate is crazy-high. It’s also true that the national sport is getting drunk and starting bar-fights. But surely it’s not as bad as all that?

Well, we hate to break it to you, but this arresting statistic says otherwise. If you live in America, you are more likely to be bitten by another American than you are by a rat.

To be clear, this isn’t because US rats are particularly docile or rare on the ground. Cities like New York are completely infested, and people get bitten all the freakin’ time. There are over 40,000 rat bites recorded in America each year. The only trouble is, there are at least 45,000 human bites recorded right alongside them.

Again, this is a freaky fact for Americans, too. But, also again, it’s just something that doesn’t happen in most other countries. Sure, drunks in Britain like to hit each other, and Italian soccer hooligans are violent as heck, but biting enough people to outstrip rats? It’s something we can’t imagine happening anywhere else.

2. Americans Take ‘Fast Food’ Extremely Literally

The US is the birthplace of fast food. It’s the nation that brought the world the drive-thru, perfected the snack, and coined the phrase “lunch is for wimps.” Foreigners know all this intellectually. But confront them with a statistic like the following, and it’ll still blow their minds. Americans, you see, are the 3rd fastest eaters on Earth. On an average day, Americans spend only 74 minutes eating, nearly the lowest in the world.

That’s only slightly over 20 minutes each for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and far less if you include time put aside for eating snacks. If you live in the USA, this probably doesn’t seem so weird to you (the working lunch is an American specialty), but if you live elsewhere… man, you’re probably wondering how the heck they do it. In France, the average eating time is 135 minutes a day. In Turkey, it’s 162 minutes. Even in Japan, where people work far longer hours than in the US, they still manage to put aside 117 minutes a day for chow. The only other countries to spend as little time eating are Canada (72 minutes) and Mexico (under 70 minutes).

This is probably to do with both the American hard work ethic and fast food culture, which prioritizes productivity over relaxation. The same can be seen in a related statistic on cooking times. Nowhere else on Earth do people spend as little time cooking each day as in America.

1. Government Departments Have Official Advice for Reporting Elvis Sightings

One of the things foreigners know about the US is that it’s full of wackos seeing wacko things. There’s a reason The X-Files was so popular 20 years ago. But it’s one thing to hear about guys filming shaky footage of Bigfoot on their cell phone. It’s another entirely to hear that actual US government departments have official advice for reporting Elvis sightings.

Here, for example, is a link to the Federal government’s official website for copyright. Hover your mouse over the link. See that it ends .gov? It’s impossible for anyone not representing a government entity to register a .gov address. This site is legit. It’s part of the Federal government, and paid for by taxpayers’ money. And it includes official advice on how to copyright your sighting of Elvis.

 This isn’t a joke section put up by some lighthearted bureaucrat indulging a whim. It’s completely, mind-bogglingly serious. Which means the government was getting deluged with enough requests about Elvis sightings that they went to the trouble to post official advice about it. OK, say it with me now, altogether: only in America.

American Oddities

wif-fun-facts-001

– WIF Fun Facts

Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 194

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 194

…Now back to the regularly scheduled narrative…

Switchboard

Billy Graham Telephone Prayer Switchboard

On Tuesday March 13th 1951 the Billy Graham Telephone Prayer Switchboard is lit up like a Christmas tree. Partially due to the powerful message delivered and the foresight of young Goldwyn, compassionate operators have been made available, to dispense encouraging words for thee distinct types of people:

  1. Their power went out, hence no alarm and late for work
  2. Post crusade indigestion brought on by anxiety caused by awful dreams
  3. The objectionable combination of raucous kids and rebellious pets or rebellious kids and raucous pets.

And believe it or not, those are the lucky ones of whom were at one of the first two events (Sat.-Sun.).

butFor many who attended the Monday night Crusade, a rousing success can be claimed by all accounts; but…

…But the car ride

…But the bus trip

…But the airplane flight home

…No buts about it… were a disaster.

Related imageStarting as cold rain, leading to freezing fog morphing into freezing rain, weather related accidents, injuries and even deaths are directly attributed to the hazardous driving. Electric trolley lines are snapped by the weight of the ice. Public transit buses crawl along at a snail’s pace. The two major airports are shuttered until the warmth of the morning sun can melt away the hoarfrost.

But God does not abandon His faithful children. Once upon a similar midnight weary, on the heels of the Devil’s dark dare, He (God) took everything away from his faithful servant Job, to test Job’s faith and resolve. And only after Job had lost his possessions, his family, his health (without renouncing his faith in God), was that Royal Wager won and Job’s life was restored; all those blessings and a thousand times more.

As will He restore these recently converted and very inconvenienced in the “Town Without Pity”.

And to be sure, any blow dealt to Pentateuch will be swift and the accompanying drop precipitous.


Constance Caraway P.I.

Forever Mastadon


page 163 (end Ch. 16)

Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 191

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 191

…R.W. Moore and Fanny’s perplexity and confusion is shared by the other Libbyites, subjected to similar horrible alternate worlds…

“Good morning sleepyhead,” Worth Moore is soliciting a response while he splashes water on his face from the washbasin. With the power grid tampered and terminated, the hotel where he is staying does not have a generator, so the only available alarm clock is the bright light of the new day. Fanny is sleeping in the other room, rolled up in her king-sized sheets, looking as if a cement mixer tossed her around.

She is slow to regain her bearings, scratching her head, “I had the strangest dream. Connie and me were back in Tallahassee, like sometime before Christmas. But when I saw you walking down Tennessee Street, you acted like you never met me before, like I was a total stranger.”

He is taken aback by her unsolicited comment, admitting, “I had a similar dream, only you did recognized me. But you told me that you didn’t want anything to do with men anymore… particularly me, because you found out that I was already married.”

“You aren’t, are you?” Any confusion can be attributed to a night jam-packed with infiltrated thoughts. As untrue as they may seem, the hallucinations are eerily real.

“I guarantee you that I am an honorable Southern Gentleman with the sincerest of purposes, Fanny Renwick. How could you doubt me?”

“After the past 3 months, I don’t know what to think.” Kidnapped, lost in a town without pity, wrongly accused of vehicular manslaughter, hospitalized and now this; her issue is what?

Their perplexity and confusion is shared by the other Libbyites, who as a group are subjected to similar horrible alternate worlds and nefarious nuisances as the other run-of-the-mill crusaders.


Constance Caraway P.I.

Forever Mastadon


page 162

Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 190

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Constance Caraway P.I. ~ Episode 190

…Like an uncoordinated symphony conductor, the Dark One sends out his legions, for his version of midnight madness…

Unwilling to take this whole revival thing sitting down, Pentateuch has arranged for a not-so-special reward for anyone attending the Graham meetings. His has amassed every available demonic spirit for the purpose of polluting any feel-good images that they have taken home with them.

  • Traffic tie-ups for travelers w/flash freezing fog to make roadways impassable
  • Grotesque nightmares for those newly inspired dreamers, the ones able to fall asleep
  • Misbehaving pets and children to greet them – diversionary domestic derailleur(s)
  • Grumbling religious doubters at every turn, stealing the joy from their mass evangelical experience
  • Widespread machine malfunctions: fridges, stoves, laundry rebelling at every attempted use

Like an uncoordinated symphony conductor, the Dark One sends out his legions, for his version of midnight madness.

And not everyone receives the same exact mischief.

Some, like the Libbyites, are spared any logistic inconvenience on the way home that night, but not the subconscious discord.

There are the already irretrievably lost, those who have unwittingly subscribed to Satan’s temptations with no enhancement necessary.

Satans Place-001

In fact, the next day, a city wide blackout results from a balky Commonwealth Edison power grid; shared funkiness for the rest of Chicagoland.

But Pentateuch is allowed but a brief 24 hours, one day to do his best damage, allowed being the keyword.  Divine intervention will cap the harm at a mischievously low level.


Constance Caraway P.I.

Forever Mastadon


page 160