S T R E A M # 1 8

Ralph never wanted Toy soldiers to invade his papier-mâché teepee. (Who would?) But they did. And they took him prisoner—that’s right, the Toy soldiers did. In fairness, Ralph didn’t mind being held prisoner. Toy soldiers are famously courteous and well-groomed chaps. ‘Twas the fate of the papier-mâché teepee that worried Ralph. He is, after all, a bit of a neat-freak. Plus, as you might expect, his humble abode was a rather fragile affair. Ralph deliberately built the teepee here, on the ever-calm shores of Flapjackistan. Here, in Flapjackistan, the wind nearly always blew less than a half mile per hour. Serenity prevailed. That is, of course, until the invasion of the Toy soldiers. To be clear, these Toy soldiers were not the tiny green plastic men you might have in mind. No, they were brutes from Toyota. In sooth, they merely fancied themselves as brutes, for they were really quite civil. Indeed, shortly after becoming the World’s #1 auto-maker, Toyota went into the real estate business; and after buying up so much foreclosed property, the auto maker surreptitiously overthrew local and then national governments. Toyota officials accomplished this by tossing the word “synergy” all over the place. Nobody complained. As it turned out, they built homes and ran governments just as efficiently as they manufactured automobiles. So, for a while, everybody was happy. That is, save for those few who fled to Flapjackistan. (Like Ralph.) In fairness, the Toy soldiers weren’t all too keen on invading Flapjackistan, either. They wanted to indulge in bananas splits and Mrs. Fields Cookies and Auntie Anne’s Pretzels. They wanted to race their tricked-out Corollas. Really, they wanted to party. (Who doesn’t? Well, Ralph doesn’t.) But they also had an insatiable desire to dine on pancakes; and, as it happened, all of the pancake houses had relocated to Flapjackistan. Why? In a word: Cheap and biddable labor. (Yes, I know, that’s seven words; but in Flapjackistan ((much to the chagrin of the meticulous Toy soldiers)) nobody gives a flying fuck. Even if you’re not currently in Flapjackistan, why should you give a flying fuck? For starters, Flapjackistan exists wholly in my addled brain; for enders, you’re wasting what little is left of your life reading a bullshit blog. Go play Pac-Man. Better: Go watch some stranger play Pac-Man.) It all came down to this: Toy soldiers cannot bear going without quality pancakes. So they invaded. Really, “Invasion” is too strong of a word. After all, they didn’t exactly force Ralph and his fellow Flapjackistanis to make pancakes. They paid for them just like anybody else would. And they paid handsomely. What’s more, the “invasion” turned out to be a real boon to the Flapjackistani economy. Although, in sooth, the cost of maple syrup and butter skyrocketed; and aside from the fragility of his teepee, inflation was what most worried Ralph. He wanted prices to remain reasonable. He wanted everyone and everything to remain reasonable. But we always want what we can’t have, don’t we? What with the sudden scarcity and attendant price gouging, none of the native inhabitants of Flapjackistan could afford to pour syrup over, or smear butter upon, their own pancakes. And this, of course, lead to the riots. The natives swept through the land and laid waste to all of the pancake houses and papier-mâché teepees and Port-O-Potties (there was no such thing as indoor-plumbing in Flapjackistan—such luxuries went against the religious beliefs of the native Flapjackistanis). Consequently, the Toy soldiers hated having to relieve themselves outdoors, and without at least the Port-O-Potties, they were inclined to retreat. Ralph rebuilt his papier-mâché teepee and waited for the next wave of whatever was to arrive next. If not the slightest of breezes, then something else. Something else is always blowing in. Bottom reached? 
10 June 2008 

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