= Chapter 1 =
(The Real Chapter 1)
“Get down from that tree, Goldman!” Missy was chok-full of digust and embarrassment. “You are embarrassing me!”
“Why are you embarrassed,” came Goldman’s chipper response from behind the leaves twenty feet up in the embarrassment causing tree, “I’m the one up here?”
“Uhg,” one of Missy’s famous noises. “Just get down,” she demanded while multitasking – putting on another layer of Chic brand lip gloss, checking the shine on her nails, and texting someone. That someone wishes to remain anonymous.
For a moment Goldman considered the demand. His foot had started to cramp and he also realized he forgot to pack sunscreen. Another perk, if he chose to get down, was the only squawking he would hear would be the birds in the park, not the birds and Missy. But, just like gas, the moment passed.
“I can’t get down. I’m stuck,” Goldman lied.
“Good. Now I have a reason to call the fire department,” Missy shot back, her eyebrows unconsciously wiggled up and down.
“Hold on. I’m not stuck.” Goldman’s lying strategy never seemed to pan out. “I cannot bear to see this tree cut down. I need to make a stand.”
Another voice cut into the Goldman/Missy conversation, “a stand? Like, a tree stand? Well, I sure can help. I made a real nice tree stand, I use it every year for huntin’. Way back there in Bastard’s Bog. It’s got one of them swivelly office chairs I stole from a job site once. Only problem with it is that I fall asleep, seein’ as the chair is so comfortable. And, well, I do tend ta drink a bit seein’ as there is enough room for a cooler full a beer.
Hey, I gotta idea. I’ll check back at the truck. See’s if there is any lumber we could use?”
Another guy, carrying a rather large chainsaw, put his arm out. This rather unorthodox stop sign succeeded in stopping the treestand project manager from heading back to the truck to check for lumber. “
! What the hell?! We’re here to take down that god damned son’a bitch tree, not to build an f’n tree house!” Gary
“Tree stand, I believe the man said,” Goldman commented.
The interruption promted a glare from the chainsaw holder.
Goldman continued, in his chipper voice. “Sorry, not a tree house but a tree stand. I believe one has a roof whilst the other…”
Chainsaw man bellowed, “we ain’t building a tree nothin’! Now, stop humpin’ that god damned tree and let us do our god damned job for Christ sake!”
Missy pleaded, “Goldman, listen to these guys. They are making logical sense. Well, not the tree fort thing, but, the getting down part. Please, get out of that tree.”
Goldman knew from past experience that Missy’s pleads were disguises for her anger and rage. He did not want to get now to join that costume party.
“Oh, no,” Goldman said.
Treestand Gary, confused as usual, asked, “what kind of ‘oh, no’? Oh, no we have no two by fours to build a tree stand? Or, oh…no, I’m not coming down!?”
“Probably, oh no I’ve got a god damned splinter where the sun don’t shine from huggin’ this god damned tree.” Chainsaw laughed quietly to himself at his joke. Sadly, his joke was being used as a defense mechanism against a phobia of splinters. In an attempt to hide this phobia he overcompensated by continuously making questionable jokes about splinters in unusual places and taking on the job of chainsaw operator. Nobody had any reason to suspect. Nobody ever found out.
“Neither oh no. I just remembered that I have forgotten to call the media. The power of the press would be of great help in furthering my cause,” Goldman started to lecture. “The word of this injustice on nature must spread, like the branches of a majectic oak, to the people…”
raised his hand. Gary
Goldman pointed to him through the foliage, “yes, you. Question?”
“But, this ain’t no oak tree.”
There was silence for a moment as Goldman tried to compose himself and figure out an appropriate response to this non-question.
Strangely, an agreement came from Missy. “It’s true Goldman, this guy here is right. This is not an oak tree.” She turned to
, whose hand was still in the air, and apologized. “oh, how rude of me. I’m sorry I referred to you as just ‘guy’. What was your name again? Greg or Harry? Something in that class?” Gary