You ever find the perfect shell?
You ever go walking along the beach and see a perfect shell, but a wave is coming in? You know what I am describing, perfect shell, wave and you in your Sunday best? And you’re thinking, “that is a damn fine shell, but I’m standing here in a three piece suit” or maybe “a nice dress with a fine bonnet”.
But still the lure of the shell wins out?
Yeah, I know you know, happened to me the other day. I was wearing this tuxedo, tails, top hat, the works. I know you’re asking yourself where I got such a nice set of threads and truth be told, I conned a tailor out of them. I gave him some magic beans in exchange for this tux. He told me the material was imported and I said the beans were magic. Well, I was feeling bad about the trade since the beans weren’t any kind of magic. Then I checked the label and it turned out the tux wasn’t any kind of imported. So, I guess with both pulled a fast one. All of that is neither here nor there or even over to yonder.
What matters to this story is that I was wearing this tux, walking on the beach wearing this amazing pari of Lucchese sharkskin boots. Now the story on the boots and how I got ’em is a bit simpler to tell. I knew a guy with the boots and then he didn’t want them anymore on account of the boots were shark and they yearned for the sea. He gave em to me if I promised to take ’em to the beach every now and then. Well this was then and I had the boots out for a sandy stroll. Then I spot this shell, this prefect shell tumbling in the sand. I decide to throw caution to the wind and run after it. As caution caught a good breeze and floated into the sky, I dove for the shell and another wave washed over me, knocking me down. I had a good grip on the shell and tried to get it and myself above water, but something had a hold of the other side of the shel and it was pulling on me and pulling hard. I was heading out to sea and heading out fast. At some point I must have blacked out, but I had a death grip on that shell.
So I come to in this underwater magic kingdom. There’s seahorses swimming around with prawns riding on top of them and mermaids fanning me with kelp. Let me tell you, kelp does not make a good fan. I still got a grip on this shel and I slowly become aware of this tugging on the other end of the shell. There’s this big dude tugging and saying “leggo, leggo of the shell. It’s my shell. Gimme.”
So I wake up completely and say, “No. It’s my shell and you leggo.”
And then this guy pulls this crap, “I am Poseidon god of the oceans and this is my shell.”
I say, “I’m holding it and from where I’m sitting, it looks like my shell. Also, I thought the god of the sea was named Neptune.”
“I am known by many names. Neptune, Poseidon, Bangpūtys, Morskoi, Manannán Mac Lir, Yam, Ezili.”
“So, you got a lot of aliases. You don’t sound like a god. You sound like a straight up criminal. Also, wait, Ezili is a goddess not god.”
“Don’t judge. Just let go of my shell.”
“No. Make me.”
“Someone, fetch my trident.”
“You can go and get your trident and you know what happens when you do, you let go of my shell and it is mine. Possession is nine tenths of the law. You try to take the shell and I will sue your ass.”
“You surface dwellers are so selfish.”
“Surface dwellers, what the hell? You a Morlack and me an eloi? An Eloi wearing a tux? Can you be any stupider? Who do you think you are?”
“I AM THE GOD OF THE SEA!!!”
“You sound like a spoiled brat. I had the shell, it’s my shell and I’m not letting go. You aren’t letting go. No way to solve this.”
“Yes, there is, Ariel, get dad’s phone from the charger and call Sol.” One of the mermaids, the red headed one, swam off and came back shortly.
“He’ll be here in a couple of minutes.”
So, we sat for a couple of minutes, each holding our side of the shell. Then this guy come bopping in. Looks at the two of us and says, “Not again.”
So, Poseidon or Neptune or whatever the hell his real name is says his part of the deal and I say my part and then Sol thinks for awhile and says, “I know, we will cut the shell in half.”
“Solomon, that is always your solution and it never works.” That’s when I notice that most of the stuff down there was cut in half. Shells, barnacles, this IKEA dining table, an anchor, a limited edition Hell Boy figurine.
“It always works. Always. Always, always, always.”
“Guys. Guys. Guys!” They finally turned my direction.
“This just got really stupid. I have no idea why King Solomon is down here. That’s just a bit much for me to take. Plus the fact that you have so much crap cut in half shows that you are just a petulant child and you’d rather have stuff destroyed then admit you’re wrong. So, I’m just gonna go.”
“Pretty preachy all of a sudden.”
“Shut up, King Solomon.” I was getting tired of all of this.
“Sol’s right, you’re pretty preaching for a guy with no shoes.”
Then I looked down. My boots had swum away.
So, I left the two of them high fiving and looking at the shell. Who high fives anymore?
Anyway, I bought a better shell at Neptune’s gift shop on the way out. I’ll miss those boots, but I’m sure they are happier now.