Chetspeak on Sunday
“Had much experience with mushrooms, Bernie?” he said.
“Nope,” said Bernie.
Whoa. Nope? Had he forgotten that huge and tasty mushroom we’d found in the woods on the Big Bear Case? And didn’t Bernie love to throw little white mushrooms on the barbecue when we grilled burgers? Which I hoped would be happening again real soon. I could just about smell them! In fact, with a little more effort, I actually … yes! I smelled burgers. I’d made myself smell burgers when there were none around – wow! What a life. Had something just been bothering me? Whatever it was: poof!
“Once on shrooms,” Nixon was saying, “ – this was down in Mexico, bad idea as it turned out, but that came later – I was sitting by this campfire and all of a sudden I rose up out of the flames.” Nixon opened his eyes. “Not me, but this vision, you see what I mean.”
“Gotcha,” said Bernie.
“Only I was in black-and-white,” Nixon. “Shimmering. Is that a word?”
“I was shimmering,” Nixon said. “There was me, this real person, and then me, this unreal person – but cool, you know? – at the same time.” Nixon shrugged and went silent.
“That’s what Bette Davis had?” Bernie said. “Real and unreal at the same time?”
– from A Fistful of Collars
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