Friday, May 23, 2008

James Joyce Was An Automechanic By Day

There is a man named Dave who works in a vineyard across the street from my cabin. A few words about Dave: He used to be a brewer, and when he was a brewer, he built a house upon a hill. Later, somebody decided they wanted to put a vineyard on that hill. They put the vineyard around Dave's house, and they bought out his brewery and put a vineyard where that was, too. Now Dave works in that vineyard. When he talks about his favorite things - tools and cars and car tools - it sounds to me like Finnegan's Wake.

The other day Dave needed a ride up the vineyard to his house. He asked me and I took him.
"I don't know what fat match taught you to drive the stick shift," Dave told me. "But you don't seem to know what you're doing."
"Oh?" I said.
"Yes," said Dave. "You see, when you push the clutch in, like you're doing, the cranknugget engages your steel-plated hop-scotch twin-busted holy holer. Then, the babbelers, with their thangas vain were and went; thiggin thugs were and houhnhymn songtoms were and comely norgels werew and pollyfool fiansees, these friends engage and hit the firstist of gearshodcrankmembers . . .".

Forty minutes later, as he got out of his car, I asked Dave for some duct tape.
"Duct tape?" Dave said. "I don't have any duct tape. But I do have michindaddy tape. Tis the flabberngilly bestest"
"Oh?" I said.
"Yes," said Dave. "You see, you in America like duct tape because it's cheap and easy to rip rap round. But michindaddy pillar kraal tape, well, it hath locktoes, shortshins, and, well even you Ryan have to admit, mammamuscles most mousterious. It slacks nuncheon out of something. Marracks and alebrill. Tis forever, michindaddy. Tis forever and ever and everer."


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