The Baker, The Butcher and The Brewer, Part Four – The Brewer 13
The Brewer couldn’t sleep well. He woke up congested with stifled muscles and low energy. The bitter breeze and salty water had won. All the parables and allegories from the previous day couldn’t make a difference. He had to see a doctor before the museum.
The waiting room was filled with stressed, overworked audience. Luckily (he thought) the walls were more entertaining than average. They were covered in framed bold sentences in the fashion of ‘Smoking kills’.
‘Children will never grow hair if pregnant women eat eggs.’
‘Lemons take the bad energy.’
‘Green beans won the war.’
The Brewer entered the office after a short wait. He closed the door gently only to feel it opening behind him. The doctor gave him a stern look. He closed it again, waited for a moment to see it slowly separating from the wall, once again. He pressed it firmly and lifted the handle in final attempt to subdue this inanimate object. He turned around to meet the mildly amused physician.
‘That’s what doors do, they close and they open.’ Explained the Brewer.
‘You were raised by a women weren’t you?’ Smiled the doctor.
The Brewer was stunt by this piercing insight. He stared down as if he saw a penny on the floor and couldn’t tear his eyes from it. His mind flying back in time. His mother and grandmother used that verbal weapon. Now he knew why it came out of his mouth, etched in his memory. Ineffective, like the apple juice law. (A law passed that every pub has to have at least one soft beverage cheaper than the cheapest alcohol beverage.)
‘You look scattered. What is it?’
‘I went fishing yesterday with a boat out in the ocean.’
‘I see. It was a bitter day.’
‘I need to work today.’
‘I see. Well. This kind of ills are like a river incepted by the monsoons that flows strong but it can be easily dried up before it reaches an ocean, a sea or a lake.’ Explained the doctor.
The buzzing noise in the Brewer’s head subsided (the gummy bears took a break).
‘Is it true about the eggs and the pregnant women?’ He inquired amusingly.
‘Yes and no. Yes and no. See all these statements on the walls are true to a degree. They serve or had served society at some point or another. I believe they carry lessons. Undercooked egg yolks for example are loaded with bad cholesterol. But you can’t explain that to the people in a tiny village that do not know what cholesterol is. So you make up a fictional story they would understand. For their own good. You see! The rest are less riddle-like.’ The doctor smiled proudly.
The Brewer nodded amused.
‘Back to business.’ The doctor pulled out two boxes of meds out of his desk. Opened the first one and took out two capsules. Took a pencil and put the date on the box. Then pulled out a smaller box from the second. It was open so it was already dated. He dated every container he opened.
‘Alright! Those three capsules are for today so you can go to work. Very strong stuff. They are sort of like a lottery ticket, give you a fake sort of comfort. Eventually you will crash. The rest are moderate and will cure you if you follow the instructions.’
‘That’s it?’ Inquired the Brewer.
‘That’s it. Pleasure to serve you!’ The doctor shook his hand and suggested the door.
The Brewer walked out uncomfortable in his skin. The city noises were far from sympathetic to his ears.
Something uninvited, unintellectual, unclever, uneducated was spreading rampant in his body. Virus.
Rampant. Rampant. Rampant.
Rampant was its only goal. That mindless organism had grip and focus.
‘The appearing small bureaucratic battle to pave the only dirt road leading to a tiny village gets bigger the closer you get to it.’ Thought the Brewer. ‘It’s in the hands of two rivaling neighbors (both in vogue) living in two opposite-hills farmhouses. One secretly intruding with a telescope the other’s privacy. The other finding the telescope during a friendly visit.’
‘The village is my soul.’ He went on. ‘The neighbors are my heart and my mind. My dreams are abstract and un-linear. Does that mean my antenna is not tuned? Nope!’
How much oak could be added to wine’s identity before the identity was lost. Before it got harsh on your lip and soft on the mind. Not much?
He thought of life as a cube made up of twenty-seven smaller cubes, every edge of the cube was three small cubes long and every side had nine small cubes. He could clearly see twenty-six of these cubes most of the time. The twenty-seventh cube? The one that was in the center was completely elusive. No mater how he turned it, it was always covered by one of the other twenty-six cubes. He thought of that invisible cube as the essence of life even the meaning of it all. No one could see that. He could break the cube to see the center. But! If he did it, he would break his life and he wouldn’t be able to put it back together. I taught him not pursue that impossible path, instead to try to realize that there was no cube in the middle. What was there was a mechanism that made the other cubes work. Mechanism that no one had ever seen or would see. Mechanism that if he managed to avoid worrying about would be ahead of most.
That was what true artist’s mind was troubled with, the twenty-seventh cube. A temperament so strong that it blinded and unbalanced the other twenty-six aspects of life.
Stay tuned for next week’s installment of The Baker, The Butcher and The Brewer – Tuesday, April 19
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more by PETER ODEON
photograph by Patrick Tomasso