9.6 –Altamont, Illinois Gas Station

I made it all the way to Illinois before I started getting tired and my butt hurt.  Because I wasn’t a Reality Traveler anymore and didn’t hafta MeToo as many Realities as possible there was no rush, so I’d planned to rest whenever I needed to and maybe even get a hotel room.  But once I was on the Road I still anxious to get to Where-ThePlains-Meet-TheMountains as soon as possible, so I could start My New Adult Life right away.

My Dr. Pepper was only so powerful, and I had no music to keep me pumped up, and I was thinking about taking a short Power Nap, when I remembered I still had the mysterious pill Scorpion gave me.  I dug it out of my pocket, and there it was all fat and black&white and shiny looking like a piece of candy.

“Hmm,” I said.

Then I shrugged and swallowed it and washed it down with Dr. Pepper.  It kicked in almost right away.  Suddenly I was wide awake, my butt felt great, and my eyes grew to twice their size and could see everything on The Road.  I didn’t even seem to get any jitters or twitches like Speed Perceptions usually give you.  I just pushed the pedal down and felt like I could keep driving until an ocean got in the way.

Wings needed more gasoline eventually tho, and I decided to pull off Road-70 at an exit that said Altamont, Illinois, cuz it reminded me of the concert at Altamont.

Altamont was a concert all about The End of The 1960’s Golden Age of Reality Travel.  It was supposta be just like Woodstock, The Peak of the 1960’s Golden Age, where every single RockNRoll band played and a huge crowd MeToo’d at once about Music, Perceptions, Peace, and mud.  But at Altamont not every single RockNRoll band played, and for some reason a huge crowd of MeNotzies went and ended up going to War, and four Realities got destroyed forever.  It gave everyone who was there Big Doubt, and they all realized The Golden Age was over, and then everyone started quitting Reality Travel to become Adults.

There was only one gas station off the exit, and it didn’t have any of the names I was familiar with.  It just said “IT’S A GAS GAS GAS” on the sign, and there was no one there except the Reality working inside.  I’d been in Alone Reality for hours and wanted to keep it that way, but I hadta go in to pre-pay again.

“Okay,” I said to myself, “all you have to do is go in there and pay.  You don’t have to MeToo them or anything.  You can even go to War if you have to.  When you start Your New Adult Life, they’ll give you a credit card, and you’ll never hafta do this again.”

Inside the girl behind the counter was wearing strange tattered gray robes even tho it was modern times and sunglasses even tho it was nighttime.  When I went up to her she didn’t say hello or even seem to realize I was there.

“I need gas,” I said and handed her money.

“In time,” she said confidently.

She didn’t take the money or even notice I was holding it out for her.  It seemed like maybe she was blind even tho she’d hafta have vision to be able to succeed at a gas station.

“Can you see?” I asked her.

“Yes,” she said, “just not right in front of me.”

“Don’t you need good eyes to help me?”

“Don’t worry about that, Reality Traveler.”

“What?  Why would you call me that?”

“Because that’s what you are, Bluebird.”

“Who are you? Where did you hear that name?”

“I didn’t hear it.  I saw it, because I’m The Seer.”

I noticed her nametag said “THERESA S.”

“What do you mean?” I said, “like a psychic?”

“Yes,” she said.  “I can see thru nearly all time and space.  The past and the future.  This World and The Other World.

“Yeah, right.”

“Silence Big Doubter!  Serious things are happening right now in The Other World. The Gods are wise to your illegal Love affair, and The Goddess of Faith has been arrested.  Soon they will hold a Trial in The Underworld to determine both of your Fates, but there is still an opportunity to save her and yourself if you dare Travel to that dark and treacherous realm.”

“Look, I think I see what’s going on here.  I’m having some Side Effects from Scorpion’s Pill, and you’re just a normal gas station person, and I’m hallucinating all of this.”

“No, Scorpion’s Pill is making you see thru The Veil more easily.  Now you must listen to me and follow these instructions.  As you continue down this Road you will encounter The Guardian of The Gates of The Underworld.  If you can evade this powerful defender you will come to The Tollbooth, at which you must pay The Ferryman to take you to The Heart of The Underworld where the Trial is being held.  There they will listen to The Testimony of Witnesses, and if they are moved by your courage, they may allow you to Testify on behalf of yourself and The Goddess.  I cannot yet see the exact outcome of this, but I assure you it is the only way to avoid certain Elimination.”

“Nope, none of this is Real.  And if you can’t just do the pre-pay for me I’ll just go to another gas station, thanks.”

“Believe me or not, your journey inevitably leads to The Underworld.  It’s your choice whether you make a stand and possibly return or back down and get sent there forever.”

7.7 – Track #5 of The Great Trip Mix: Bob Marley’s “One Love”

Bob Marley was a ShaMan and a MusicMan Traveler, from the far off and exciting Realities of Jamaica, about MeTooing via Preferring Marijuana Perception and also songs about everything being alright.

I remembered I’d had a dream with Bob Marley in it the night before.  It started off in the furthest thing from Jamaica, Valley Forge.

Valley Forge is a historical site aboutthe beginning of America.  One winter during the America vs. Great Britain Reality War, General George Washington and his Army were getting their asses kicked by the British Army and hadta retreat into the wilderness outside Philadelphia.  The only place to stay was at Valley Forge even tho it was just a little iron forge covered in snow and didn’t have houses or meat or boots.  It caused the Army to start dying alot and start thinking about maybe just stopping the War, but their leader The Great Warrior George Washington wouldn’t let them.  They made it thru the winter, and they ended up winning the War eventually.

The Goddess of Faith was there in the middle of all the dying soldiers.  She wasn’t a Guardian Angel tho.  She was an Angel of Death, and when they died she hadta take their souls out of their bodies and carry them low into the ground thru the center of the earth to a part of The Other World known as The UnderWorld or Land of Dead Souls.  It was a total drag and the only way she could deal with it was by making the song “One Love.”

“One Love” is a song about The Dream of One Reality. Every Reality at some point imagines every Reality in The World MeTooing over the same thing at the same time, and then it not feeling like billions of different Realities anymore but like one single Reality and then everything finally feeling Alright.  MeNotzies want it to come true by Domination and War, but a Reality Traveler like Bob Marley wants it to come true by Love.

The song was the first time The Goddess of Faith had ever used the word “Alright,” and it made her feel Alright even tho she just carried dead souls around all the time.  She was so excited she actually broke The Angel of Death Corps Rules and went straight up to George Washington himself, even tho he wasn’t dying, and told him to sing the song to all his men.

“I don’t understand,” he said.  “We can’t Love the British.  They’re too different from us.  It’s like they come from a whole other bizarre Reality, in which forcing someone to pay slightly more taxes without representation is alright.  We have to kill as many of them as we can until they stop Dominating us.  Besides, I can’t sing.”

“Oh,” Faith said.

Then the dream skipped all the way ahead to the 1960’s Golden Age.  Bob Marley was there, but he did not have his big black dreadlocks or a huge rolled up joint of Marijuana Perception.  He was working in a factory, and he was sneezing a lot.  It sucked because product parts would come down an assembly line, and then he hadta put them together with other parts, and they’d keep coming like that all day even if he was bored with it.  Finally he took a break and went outside and cried out to the sky about how he didn’t wanna be an Adult anymore, and he hadta be a MusicMan Reality Traveler but he had too much doubt and didn’t know how.

Then suddenly the golden-winged Goddess of Faith came swooping down, and she was a Guardian Angel now.  She gave Bob Marley a big It’s Alright, Baby hug, and then the whole song of “One Love” suddenly went from inside her to inside him.  And then he knew what he hadta do to make life better for the Realities of The World.

“Thanks and praise,” he said with a huge smile.  “I feel Alright.”

“You’re welcome,” said the The Goddess of Faith.

And then I woke up.

 

6.12 – Track #14 of The Great Trip Mix – Peabo Bryson and Regina Belle’s “A Whole New World”

One day I came over to The Den and Wolf&Lamb were listening to songs. Wolf had on some kind of electronic music that didn’t have any words and wasn’t about anything and kinda sounded like a prisoner inside a computer.

“I don’t know about this one,” Lamb said.

“Really?” Wolf said, “I’ve had some profound experiences with this music,” Wolf said. “It’s like a code that can only be cracked and understood in certain advanced Perceptions.”

“But most of the Realities at The Wedding will be in simple Alcohol Perception,” Lamb said. “Will they get it?”

“Hmm,” Wolf scratched his chin, “maybe you’re right.”

I asked them what they were up to, and they said they were making a Mix for The Wedding.

“After the ceremony and The First Dance, everyone’s going to get together and drink and dance,” Lamb said. “We’re hand picking all our favorite songs that they can MeToo.”

“All I know is I don’t want them to play any of those typical Ice Breaker songs,” Wolf said. “You know, the ones where everyone gets in a line and the song instructs them what to do. The thinking is that everyone will MeToo about doing the same moves together, but it’s at the price of your dignity.”

“I hate those, too,” I said.

“Maybe you can help us pick some of the songs,” Lamb said.

“Alright, but I only like Old Radio Hits, which a lot of Reality Travelers seem to hate for some reason.”

“We like some Radio Hits,” Wolf said. “What do you think about this?”

Then he put on Steppenwolf’s “Magic Carpet Ride.”

“Magic Carpet Ride,” is a song about taking a Reality with you for a ride on a carpet that can magically fly thru the air. And how once you’re in the air you can see new things that you can’t normally see when you’re just on the ground.

“I like this song,” Wolf said, “because like every good Anthem of the 1960’s Golden Age, it’s really about Perceptionism. ‘The carpet’ is really just a symbol for a Perception which can take you to The Other World.”

I knew the song from Old Hits Radio and liked it even when I thought it was about an actual carpet. I approved and started singing along.

“Wow,” Lamb said. “You have a great voice.”

“Yes, that’s quite a talent, Bluebird,” Wolf said. “How have we not heard you sing before?”

“I really only sing alone now.”

“That could be some MeToo strength if you use it right,” Wolf said.

I was still traumatized by my Dead Voice experience and could only shrug.

“You know who else likes singing?” Wolf said and pointed to his fiancée.

“It’s true,” Lamb said, “We should totally do Karaoke together sometime.”

“I’ve never done that before,” I said.

“Well,” Lamb explained, “Karaoke is about going to a bar that has the lyrics and music recordings for a big list of songs and then picking one of those songs and going up to a microphone and singing in front of everyone.”

“A bar?” I said. “Wouldn’t that be full of drunken MeNotzies?”

“It’s alright tho,” Lamb said, “because every Reality knows Karaoke isn’t about being good. If you screw up everyone will MeToo you for being drunk and bad just like them. And if you’re good they’ll MeToo you because you’re good. It’s really a win-win.”

“I like the sound of this,” I said. “Do you sing too, Wolf?”

“I never sing,” Wolf said. “My voice comes out in a terrible howl that disturbs Realities whether we’re in Alcohol Perception or not. But I do like to listen to others do it.”

So the next time there was a Karaoke night we all went. I was nervous cuz I hadn’t been following The Rules of Singing, especially since I’d started delivering pizzas, and hadta sing in the car all the time, and I knew there was a chance I could get The Dead Voice again. And I didn’t care what Wolf&Lamb were saying about everyone MeTooing you at Karaoke, no one can MeToo The Dead Voice. I told them about what happened with my Voice Training at ALC.

“You were singing great earlier tho,” Lamb said.

“Yes,” I said, “but The Dead Voice comes on quickly and without warning, maybe even in the middle of a song.”

“I don’t know about The Rules of Singing,” Wolf said. “But I do know the Rules of Perceptionism, and I’ll make sure you have enough Lubricant that you don’t even remember this Dead Voice exists.”

“And I’ll sing a duet with you,” Lamb said. “That way if the Dead Voice strikes I’ll just start covering your part, and then it won’t be so bad.”

“Alright,” I said.

Then Wolf took care of the Alcohol Perception end of things, and Lamb grabbed a huge notebook that was full of song titles.

“My Gods,” I said. “It’s the entire Great List of Old Songs!”

We looked thru it together, and it was hard to pick one song out of all the possible ones.

“This is too overwhelming,” I told Lamb. “What do you usually sing?”

“My favorite songs are a little embarrassing.”

“MineToo. What are yours?”

“They’re all from Disney Movies.”

Disney Movies are cartoons about talking animals who have problems at first but then solve them and live happily ever after. They make kids feel like life is going to be alright.

“I like Disney Songs, too,” I said. “They’re so catchy and uplifting.”

“I don’t know,” Lamb said. “It just seems like they’re only for kids or something.”

“Reality Travelers are kids tho,” I said.

“He’s right,” Wolf said. “I like Disney Movies, too, especially the more Perceptionist ones like Alice in Wonderland and Fantasia.”

“Let’s sing a Disney song then,” I said. “What’s your favorite?”

“It’s probably “A Whole New World’ from Aladdin,” Lamb said.

Aladdin is a Disney Movie, in the far off and exciting Realities of Arabia, about a lowly street thief Reality who falls in Love with a princess but doesn’t think she’ll like his Reality and is afraid to introduce himself. Then he finds a lamp with a hilarious genie inside who gives him three wishes and the street thief thinks that’s the only way to MeToo the princess, but she ends up falling in Love with him anyway in the end.

“A Whole New World,” is a song about taking something with you for a ride on a carpet that can magically fly thru the air, and how once you’re in the air, you can see new things that you can’t normally see when you’re just on the ground.

“Yes!” I said. “Let’s do that one.”

Then Lamb filled out a little slip of paper and handed it to the Karaoke guy, and a little while later he called us up to the microphone. The “A Whole New World,” music started to play, and there was a screen in front of us that showed all the words that were about to come up. I took the Aladdin words and Lamb took the Princess words, and we both started nailing it right away. Lamb had a high and powerful Baah voice, and all my throat spots were alive, and I was able to bounce air off of them to create all the right notes. There was a part when we had to sing at the same time, and our two voices combined were more powerful than our voices on our own. It gave me The Chills, and when I looked out all the Realities of the bar had gotten out of their seats and were dancing in front of us and singing along.

It turned out Disney songs were more MeTooable than we’d realized. When we were done everyone clapped and went “Woo!” and I heard one Reality say “Best of the night!” Wolf was standing up and clapping and howling the loudest.

“You guys are both RockStars,” he said.

5.6 – LoveHunting

“I am related to the Great Reality Traveler Gabriel Garcia Marquez,” El Puma had told me.

Gabriel Garcia Marquez was a South American WriterMan Traveler who MeToo’d via Magical Realityism. He wrote a famous book about two SoulMates who meet when they’re young but don’t actually get together until they’re really old, but at least that’s something.

“My family taught me about Reality Travel when I was a small boy, and I was inspired to become a Great Reality Traveler who MeToo’d via Love like my famous relative,” he said. “I especially wanted to Travel to the far off and exciting Realities of North America, where they had invented the 1960’s Golden Age of Love, in which Realities would Love any other Reality even if they were not attracted to them. This brought me, of course, to Artsy Lawless College, which they said had the most Reality Travelers. I thought I would be in Love here all the time, but when I arrived I discovered the 60’s Golden Age had long vanished after its leaders had all died of HIV/AIDS. It seems the women now are like little baby chickens who quickly scurry away at the sight of me, and I’ve had to learn how to hunt them. I have been studying their habits the whole time I’ve been at this campus, and now I am ready to pounce.”

When the next Dorm party came up, El Puma said we hadta go.

“Do we hafta find Love there?” I said. “I don’t really like Dorm parties.”

“I know of no other way,” he said. “There are many chicks in one place at one time, and the music and alcohol seem to help them MeToo.”

As soon as we got there a girl walked by and recognized El Puma.

“Oh gods,” she said and rolled her eyes and kept walking.

“What was that?” I asked him.

“Ah,” he said. “She is one of my past failures. I once gave her the gift of a rose, but she said it seemed like I was ‘too interested,’ and then she would not Love me. But do not worry Traveler Jonathan, there are many other chicks here to Love.”

“How do we start?”

“First we look at the chicks and decide who we like.”

I looked around the room and saw one who was cuter and fluffier and yellower than the rest. I remembered her from Voice auditions, and she had a really high and powerful chirp.

“I like that one,” I pointed, “The Hottest Chick.”

“Yes,” El Puma said, “she is flawless. Now you go speak to her.”

“But I don’t know much about her Reality yet. Shouldn’t I watch for awhile until I notice some things we can definitely MeToo about?”

“No, I have learned that approach only leads to failure. You must go to her at once while the impulse is fresh.”

“What do I say?”

“Tell her she is the most beautiful chick you have ever seen, and you imagine her mind is even more beautiful.”

“No way. I’m not saying that.”

“Anything complimentary will do. But you must say something and soon.”

“Alright, I’ll try.”

“Good, and I will try to talk to my own hot chick.”

Then he left. I watched my chick from across the room and waited for the right moment to make my move. I was hoping maybe something from the Great List of Old Songs would come on, and she’d show some sign she liked it, and then I’d swoop in for the MeToo. But as always they didn’t play anything I knew.

El Puma came back soon.

“I am very upset,” he said. “I went up to the chick, and she was very flattered by my compliments. But before we could MeToo any further, another chick interrupted and warned my chick that I am a ‘stalker.’”

“Oh no!”

“I am still relatively new to America and do not know yet what this word means.”

“It means like a hunter.”

“But I do not mean to kill and eat them for food. Can’t they see I am only hunting for Love?”

I shrugged.

“Enough of my troubles,” he said. “What did you say to your chick?”

“I didn’t talk to her.”

“I see. Perhaps it is best not to begin with the Hottest Chick.”

“But that’s the only one I like.”

“I know what you are saying, but I have discovered you often must hunt at least ten chicks before you catch one’s Love.”

“That’s a lot tho.”

“Yes, and there is only so much time. Let us return to the hunt!”

This time I watched El Puma operate. He was right, most of the chicks ran away from him, but eventually one danced right next to him, and they even started to kiss for awhile. He came back later to tell me about it.

“We have just MeToo’d with the mouth many times,” he said, “I believe this could turn into Love.”

“You did it!”

“Yes, and she has invited me to her room, where we may confirm this Love with the Horizontal MeToo. But before I go I want to know how you are doing?”

“I still haven’t talked to anyone.”

“I understand. You are not as experienced in what to say to chicks. As your new Reality Travel brother, perhaps I must speak to her for you.”

“Alright.”

Then El Puma went over there. I was too far away to hear what they were saying, but they looked over at me once, and then he came back pretty quickly.

“What did you say?” I asked.

“I told her you think she is the hottest one here.”

“And what did she say?”

“She said it would have been much more attractive for you to approach her yourself.”

“Dammit.”

“It is alright. I did not speak with her for long but I could tell she is a MeNotzie.”

“Really?”

“Yes, she would’ve just MeNotted everything you say. You wouldn’t want her Love.”

“Oh.”

“Do not worry, Traveler Jonathan. Love hunting is very difficult and there is much failure, but you must not give up.”

“Alright.”

“I must now go with my chick. Will you be alright without me?”

“Yeah.”

Then I left the party alone right after he did.

1.7 – Track #2 of The Great Trip Mix – The Beatles’ “Here Comes the Sun”

The Great List of Old Songs was started by The Beatles.

The Beatles were a RockNRoll band, from the far off and exciting Realities of England, about making such good songs that they became the Leaders of The 1960’s Golden Age of Reality Travel.

The 1960’s Golden Age of Reality Travel was an era about having more Reality Travelers at one time than ever before. During the 1940’s The Great MeNotzie Army went to War with Every Other Reality in The World. The MeNotzies were eventually defeated, but not before many Realities got completely destroyed forever. The Gods hated it bad, and in response they Called Upon millions of Reality Traveler babies to balance things out. By the 1960s, the babies had grown up and started creating new and effective MeToo inventions like the BirthControl Pill, Acid Perception, and most importantly RockNRoll. And with them they were able to stop many old Reality Wars like White Realities vs. Black Realities, Men Realities vs. Women Realities, Democracy Realities vs. Communism Realities, and Repressed Realities vs. Sex Realities.

Few remember what music was like before The Beatles came along. It’s assumed there were songs, and they could’ve been alright, but the Beatles were the ones who invented all the most important things in music like high and powerful vocals, the four person band, harmony, the guitar lick, going on The Road, long hair, screaming fans, and songs that can change The World. My favorite invention by the Beatles is songs about everything being alright, like “Here Comes the Sun.”

“Here Comes the Sun,” is a song about it being cloudy for a long time but then the sun finally coming out. While it was dark everyone felt like everything was all wrong, but when it got light out again everything was alright.

Every time the Beatles say “It’s alright” in the song, it makes you suddenly feel alright too, even if the biggest, darkest, coldest, graymean cloud is all over you. And because of things like this, every band that came before The Beatles were suddenly never played on The Radio ever again, and every band that came after them sort of sounded just like them. Songs like “Here Comes the Sun” could MeToo people so much better than ever before that it erased whatever The Old List of Great Old Songs was and it started a whole new one.