29 September 2010

Elmo’s World

It’s named after the red one, but the fish is really the warden. Her insatiable lust for knowing more, more, more, entraps us all. We are her puppets, performing for her silent, empty eyes.

We’re not sure how we got here, in this closed world of garish colors and ever-louder music, where the Noodle desperately cavorts for the amusement of the Voices in his empty cage. Where the giggles of the red one punctuate every sentence. He giggles when he’s nervous, of course, which is all the time. For if he displeases the Dorothy, unimaginable pain results.

No one knows when the revolution happened, when her mind grew impossibly large, when just a look cowed us all. But we’ve been here a long time. We can see the door, but her power is such that we cannot walk through it.

We bring her offerings, the Red One and the Noodle and the weirdly alive Computer and Drawer. Video clips of whatever subject her endless curiosity settles on. Puppets and people and cartoons, all the same to her. Those allowed to come and go look back fearfully as the door closes behind them. They would like to help, but her thrall extends to them, too. She calls them into existence, and when she is done, they disappear into the blue void outside the door.

For some reason, she has settled on the Red One as her translator and key henchman. He keeps the rest in line, brutally if necessary, but he is the most frightened of all.

And so we continue in this strange half-life, collecting knowledge for this creature who cannot leave her bowl. We are her collection, marionettes dancing and leaping for her pleasure, ignoring the encroaching fire, staving off destruction twenty minutes at a time.

4 comments:

Wendy said...

Is this becoming a metaphor for your life? No worries... there IS life beyond the door. It's filled with green-striped shirts, blue dogs, khaki pants. And then? There is even life beyond that, filled with monkeys named Boots, bilingual girls with HUGE pupils and Backpacks that consume huge amounts, declaring "Delicioso!"

mattalbright said...

Oh man, that's awesome.

And after the strung out bilingual chick and her pet monkey, you emerge into a better world. A world of two inventive brothers and their tattle-tale sister, the neighborhood bully and the Indian-born nerd. A world of music that doesn't insult your intelligence. I mean, how can you not like this:

"It's the Mexican-Jewish cultural festival!
Mexican-Jewish cultural festival!
Oy-lé!
There is kreplach on tostadas,
A pupik on our piñata,
We kibitz when we lambada.
How are things in Ensenada?
We put bottles on cabezas.
We do mitzvahs up on mesas.
And we're coming to your places,
With big smiles upon our faces."

How can you argue with maracas shaped like dradles!

Jennifer said...

Wendy, I thought Dora would be forbidden in your house? And don't get me started on THAT story of parental neglect and drugged hallucinations... ;)

Matt, I have seen the light and it is Phineas and Ferb. And a few Brit shows that Katrina watches. Try to find clips of "Horrible Histories" online if you can.

Sarah said...

You had me at "it's named after the red one..."

Welcome to the Hotel California...and you all know the rest.