Jenny Lind: The Swedish Nightingale
Jenny Lind, a renowned opera singer of the 19th Century and known across the world as the Swedish Nightingale, visited my small, fair city, Northampton, Massachusetts for a brief run near the hight of her career. The event was highly celebrated and well publicized. Indeed, at one point she made a comment from the stage of our Academy of Music, pronouncing the little dimple in a small valley along the Connecticut River “The Paradise of America.” I can only assume that Ms Lind was then swooning under the influence of too much tincture of opium taken as a precaution against stage fright or being kidnapped by the rough and ready local merchants and still nearby red-skins of that day.
Whatever. She was pretty well right. This is a lovely place, even today. It is the sweet spot in the middle of an urban and rural terrain beset by a severe recession and the failing of family farms. It’s far enough from the river, some one-hundred and fifty feet above sea-level, to remain dry and cozy and we’ve got our own soot belching coal plant and a nearby nuke to provide power even when the lights go out on neighboring burgs. There are also many public parks and playgrounds that are well tended, good schools, and several colleges within eye-shot from the meadows down low by the water or from up on the mossy bumps we call mountains ‘round here.
The place is quite congenial. People actually look up and say “hello” to each other when promenading on our prosperous Main Street or searching the aisles of the little food markets that still thrive in a day when in most other places they’ve long shuttered their doors. Folks are also quite politically active in both local civic affairs and politics nationally and worldwide. We tend to be conscious and conscientious citizens. Thus, a group of fine individuals have come together to act in concert, or not, in The Occupy Movement.
That is were I see the trouble in Paradise. These folks tend to be too nice. They are obliging to the goon with a loaded gun and pepper spray guarding the the little office of the local Bank of America. Their signs are itty-bitty things, nicely laminated. Their banners could have been painted by a brutally damaged vet undergoing art therapy in rehab at the local VA hospital. They politely stand on the curb so as not to disrupt anything, and are always handy with a hug but otherwise do not bother anybody or anything… other than handing our tiny flyers adorned with indecipherable doodles or a few dozen bullet points so as to be utterly meaningless in informing the public.
There is one very large exception to this stereotype that I have just drawn. There’s this one amiable, shaggy, very clever and observant fellow that regularly shows up to raise some gentle hell. He noticed a sign on the door to the bank that said “No Pets Allowed.” He had the idea that we should bring a horse into the lobby. I rather liked that idea. I thought about it for the next day or so.
Now, I do know how to get my hands on an old nag, one about to be put down by a nearby college’s stable. That stable is close enough to walk the old lady down to Main Street, and gentle pat on the ass will get her to walk on in, just as she enters her stable. Once in, she will be in the comfy confines of a place of no exit, except in reverse. She will not be able to move forward to the lobby, as the corner around the banister is too tight for a beast of such dimensions. She will likely be rather upset and confused and her bowels will loosen. A heavy compost of horse poop will now grace the entrance to the Bank of America. The manager will not be pleased.
He will encourage his hired thug to shoot the poor creature. As this jerk has been thumbing the stock of his pistol and fingering the trigger in a masturbatory gesture for weeks on end (without ever achieving climax), the guy might just comply in his eagerness to satisfy his boss and get his rocks off by killing something, anything, at last. Now they got a dead horse and a further enriched pile of horse manure blocking the entrance of the bank.
I rather like that plan, but wonder if it is ethical to doom a creature, even one already sentenced to meet her demise, to death by prank… even in the name of a good cause.
So, let’s try Plan B. We get a pig. I know where to get a pig. So, what I do is get a pig and pull up the trailer and loading ramp to the door of the bank. We then run Piggly-Wiggly down the ramp through the door after slathering the little monster in cheap mineral oil or sun-block discounted by CVS for the New England winter season.
Most of the public will have no problem with seeing a pile ‘o porcine flesh dispatched, even at the hands of a creep in jack boots in the lobby of a major bank. People eat bacon or ham every day. They will be grateful for the bloody horror before them, in fact, as the two-hundred pound pink maniac will be charging around the lobby, forcing customers up on the counters and the manager’s desk, tellers will be weeping and screaming. Poor, old Mrs. McGuillicuty will vomit and faint. Mr. McGuillicuty, a prominent local lawyer, will be irate when he learns that his wife has to be picked up at the hospital and will begin legal proceedings as no bank that allows crazy pigs into its lobby should be in business.
I think, quite assuredly, that either on of these modes of direction action will serve to advance the cause of The Occupy Movement, put our points across, and perhaps get the attention of local news media.
Res Ipsa Loquitor,