The Pie
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The Pie

On the way to Camelot, According to Stu

Day 5 of Christmas Convergences 2021

A countdown to Christmas with Stu’s “Cursory Rhymes for Our Curious Times”

(Day 6 is here)

Stu’s Idea: From Out of Nowhere

It came upon a warm night clear
with three bright planets lined up near.
Venus, Saturn, and Jupiter shined
like Christmas lights to my bug mind
as I went uptown to see the sights,
the castle wall festooned with lights,
the keep prepared for the coming nights.

Stu has been thinking a lot about Camelot lately. It’s something that comes and goes with him and has ever since he saw pictures of men in armor, which of course, reminded him of bugs with shells.

He imagines Camelot preparing for Christmas festivals. He imagines the Christmas spirit and the roles that the castle community would have played for both their families and the larger community.

The keep is on the left. The west castle wall is on the right. Blurred Venus is center right.

He sees that as a metaphor to explore and consider, just as we should consider the possibility of his small misanthropic aliens, the Stralfs, and their elaborate insidious mumblings that drive us apart — and possibly away from Earth.

Stralfs don’t use simplistic villain/hero or good/evil mental suggestions. Over the decades, they found something more effective. We helped them come up with it. But it’s not nearly as effective at Christmas, which is why they hate Christmas. Some even think they should all just take a week’s vacation each year from December 19th through the 25th.

One of the first Stralfian scouts, whom Stu calls Stralphie, actually proposed this in late 1914, after the impromptu truce had occurred on the WWI front lines between the Germans and the British on Christmas 1914. He was rebuffed by a much younger leader that rallied against him, calling him Santa’s Elf.

More importantly, the chant that defeated Stralphie’s idea, which was simply a pragmatic idea and not intended to honor Santa Claus or the Christmas spirit, referred to the Stralfs’ landing here in 1819. (Stu has always been fascinated by the effectiveness of chants in both humans and Stralfs, partly because it reminds him of grasshopper, cricket, katydid, and cicada chants, except in the bug world they’re used for peace.)

“From 1819 to 2425, 365 until we take the hive!” That was the simple chant. Stralphie’s idea was defeated by the chant, but there were other consequences. 1920 became a push year, as is 2021, especially in December. (A lot of Stralfian strategy was very successful in 1920.)

They assess their effectiveness at the end of December, and that report deflates or inflates them, so to speak, for the next year’s schemes. Thus the importance of Christmas season, 2021, according to Stu.


(Note: This is my 100th post at Medium, which is ironic since Stralfs focus on 100 year intervals. And according to Word, there are 365 words below the poem, not including this note. Of course, 365 is very important to Stralfs. Clearly, these are just a coincidences. Clearly, Stu wonders.)



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T.J. Storey

T.J. Storey

Former teacher, Jeanne’s husband, Brandon’s and Elyse’s dad. No guru/no woo woo. Fan of how-things-work and what it means for our kids, theirs, theirs,…