11.29.2004

God's Waiting Room/Stab-Wound Trauma Ward

Yesterday, my private zepellin was tethered at Ft. Myers airport in Florida. I was driven in from the airport to an excessively luxurious beachside penthouse in Naples Florida, which I had had Alphonso acquire for me in the mid 80's, but have, until now, never seen.

[ Don't ask; it was the fruit of a decision made at the climax of a horrible bender that ended with myself and Mr. Belvedere watching 27 consecutive, taped episodes of Miami Vice and drinking scoth that was *shudder* less than 20 years old.]

The drive was 45 minutes and until we reached the beach, we did not see a single building higher than one story. Admittedly some of these building were one very high story -- gigantic Walmarts in need of high-ceilings in order to house massive jars of mayonaise -- but, in all honesty there was literally not a single two-storey building to be seen. There is an astoundingly low population density here, not low like Canada with its endless forests, but low in the sense that a ton of people have spread themselves as thinly as possible, so as not to ever have to come in contact with one another -- except at fast-food drive-throughs and by-the-hour motels.

So it was that I arrived in Florida.

Florida; God's waiting room. The air here is scented with sea, sun, palm and imminence. At the airport I picked up a local rag, The Naples Daily News. To my well-trained eye, the very headline may as well have been "Apocalypse Expected By Early Next Week." I am only able to write about it now after continuously bracing myself with Gin and Tonics since opening the paper at 4 pm yesterday afternoon.

I'm having trouble deciding what was the most disturbing thing in this paper, but I'll take a stab at it. I will draw your attention to an advertisement on pg. 6. After leaving the seemingly innocent meadows of page 5, the reader is confronted with a full-page cover ad, which proclaims:

120 EDGED COLLECTIBLES ONLY $149.99

What could be better? Apparently these knives and perhaps swords (axes? bayonettes? halberds?) have a retail value of $300 dollars. Indeed, there is considerable savings to be had here. To quote: "Don't miss out on the unbeatable deal. We've packaged 120 collectible knives into one exclusive set. If you're just starting your collection of looking to complete it.. this is the knife set for you. Each mirror-polished blade is constructed from top quality stainless steel."

The picture features many different knifes. In the upper left there are half a dozen dark grey switchblades -- perhaps carbon fiber so as not to set off metal detectors? Below that is a buckknife in a cheesy wooden box. There are a dozen tiny red switchblades in the bottom right. A long, black curved knife that might function as a boomerang. Multi-cultured folding keychain knives. In the upper right, there is a set of kitchen knifes and two inexplicable red peppers. Beside them, passing through the middle of the image is a huge, ornate sword. There are three or four different kinds of generic stabbing knives. In the bottom left there is a JAR of coloured knives, photographed to give them a remarkable similarity to jellybeans.

What exactly this set includes is unclear. While there is a picture, the advertisement clearly proclaims that "actual knife styles may vary." It actually says that in not particularily fine print. You will not receive these knives. Upon mailing in your check all you know is that you will receive 120 "edged-collectibles." This is not for the discerning collector, this is for a man or woman who just wants to have a whole fucking mess of pointy things around the house.

Now for some reason, although I had no part in the creation of the ad, I find myself ashamed to mention the next detail. But, in unselfish service to my readers, I must press on. In the bottom right corner of the ad is a cartoon of Santa Claus and -- so help me God if I am lying -- he is proudly declaring that this set of 120 completely-random edged weapons "Makes a Great Gift for Everyone on your List." And since you don't know what's going to be in the box, it's almost like a gift for you to! Waiting in eager anticipation to see just which edged collectibles your loved-one/fellow stabbing-enthusiast will receive.

Glee!!!

Your wife --
After all, you love her because she loves stabbing as much as you do.

Your grandmother --
What better way to get people to speak up than by stabbing them?

Your children --
Never to early to start them on the wonderful road to stabbing.

With this I would like to send out an early Christmas Blessing to all the sun-loving stabbers in Florida and beyond.

This is a scary place and the posts may come fast and furious for as long as I can keep myself gin-braced and unstabbed.

6 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Uh-oh. In hopes of finally turning up Von Mustard's site at the top of a search I googled "stabbing-enthusiast." Unfortunately for Von Mustard's chances of getting the word out and my own sanity I turned up a site that was actually for "stabbing enthusiasts."

The end is indeed nigh.

Matthew Lie - Paehlke
Official, but Occasional, Editor

11:05 p.m.  
Blogger deadpan said...

My cousin and her husband live in Dundalk, Ontario. Dundalk is quite possible the opposite of Florida. It's the highest point in Ontario and consists mostly of farmland. There is a large Mennonite population in Dundalk - large enough that my cousin was once nearly run over at 3 am by drunk Mennonite boys racing their horse-buggies. But I digress.

My cousin-in-law has a collection of probably 120 edged items. However, they didn't come in a handy kit. He made some of them himself (blacksmithing is a quasi-popular pastime in Dundalk) and has acquired the rest over the course of his life. He also has a nifty set of very sharp kitchen knives, a hold-over from his days as a professional chef.

The knives are displayed in a charming jumble, contained safely in a glass table. Do you think the Naples Daily News would write an article about this man? Maybe I should get him the set for comparitive purposes.

Apologies for not having an actual point. My mind is being numbed by Canadian legal history.

11:45 a.m.  
Blogger Matthew Lie - Paehlke said...

Ah.. but lovely Lessa, you need know point, your gracious presence on my site is blessing enough.

I for one have no opposition to edged collectibles. I own several swords and jewelled daggers from the Ottoman Empire. But to suggest that one can acquire a set of random blades and call it collecting? This is tasteless (like the rest of Naples) and what's worse it demonstrates that the interest is in the edgedness of the collectibles rather than their aesthetic qualities. Bloody Stabbers, always ruining things for the rest of us.

5:07 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Get stabby or stab happy, I can't decide which I like more.

Today, while I worked, someone asked if B&N carried "The Poor Man's James Bond." PMJB is one of the many variants strains of the anarchist cookbook that have popped up like dank mushrooms in the last so many years. Their publisher doesn't sell to B&N.

I gave them the publisher name and ISBN to search down on the internet. I also added that I'd often seen it at gun and knife shows.

At these shows, frequented by so many edged and projectiled object enthusiasts, there is usually a teeny, tiny book section filled with zine sized publishings with subtitles that either encourage the reader to make destructive weapons in their basement to fuck stuff up or to make destructive weapons in their basement to protect themselves from those weirdos who like to fuck stuff up.

I always used to feel a little queasy after a good gunshow.

erindneophyte, stabber extraordinaire

11:49 p.m.  
Blogger justin said...

Readers of this paper! I urge you to give ear, not to the ramblings of this devious huckster, but to REASON! POINTY OBJECTS are both GOOD and NECESSARY, as I have shewn in my reply to this unctuous pablum!

--J. Davenport III

12:41 p.m.  
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10:15 a.m.  

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