Monday, February 2, 2009

The Blogspot Nudist Colony

Bagman slouches in the chair across from Butler’s desk, the left side of his long overcoat slipping off of one hairy thigh, the right side draped just enough to cover himself. Butler rolls his eyes.

After a brief interlude during which they watch the Superbowl Game together, pleased that their beloved Steelers manage to pull off a victory in the last few seconds.

Then Butler clears his throat and says, “You know you can’t just run around streaking like some inebriated fraternity boy. We’re 62 years old, for Pete’s sake!”

Bagman scoffs, “What kind of person uses the word ‘inebriated,’ for Pete’s sake…or should I be more proper and say ‘for Peter’s sake’? Peter. Get it? Peter.” Bagman cracks himself up.

“Don’t change the subject. I can’t let you ruin our reputation and the reputation of our benefactor by taking your clothes off whenever you want to!”

Bagman stares straight into Butler’s eyes and spits on his carpet. “Reputation, my ass! We’re not even real so don’t bring our benefactor into this! All he was doing was sitting at his computer capturing my heroics for his precious blog!”

Butler scurries around his desk, cleans up the spittle from the carpet with a paper towel and some germicidal cleaning fluid. Returning to his desk, he shoots back over his shoulder, “Well, nobody who is reading his blog wants to see anybody naked either!”

Bagman considers spitting again but realizes that this will just set off a meaningless cycle which, although it would be a fine metaphor for his relationship to Butler, would waste too much time. “You are wrong there, brother. Every blogger in Cyberspace wants to get naked, just like me.”

“Fiddlesticks!” screams Butler with the closest he ever came to cursing. “The blogs you are following are written by fine, upstanding ladies and gentlemen who are interested in higher ideals.”

“And they all want to get naked!”

“Fiddlesticks! Fiddlesticks! Fiddlesticks!”

“Bagman sighs, lets out a deep breath which is really the same thing as sighing, and says, “Maybe not always the way your little anal retentive mind interprets it. Just because I’m coarse doesn’t mean I’m shallow. Clothing is only one layer you can shed. And one of the least interesting, except maybe for the co-eds that were on the street a few minutes ago. This whole blogging thing that our benefactor has dragged us into is focused around exposure. People wanting to show themselves to each other. Thoughts, feelings, beliefs, desires. And other people wanting to look!”

Butler blinks. He is thinking.

“Can’t you see it?” Bagman moves in to hammer in the point. “Blogspot is a nudist colony!” He shoots his fist in the air as a victory sign and the other side of his coat falls open.

Butler looks away, disgusted, and thinks hard. He can’t bear to think of the consequences if he loses control of Bagman now. It was bad enough when they were teenagers and society gave them some slack. “But we’re 62 years old, for Peter’s sake! I mean, for Pete’s sake!” He shuts his eyes tightly with frustration and hopes a line of rebuttal will come to him.

On the other side of his closed eyelids, he hears the sound of spittle landing on his carpet.