The Figure in the Carpet – The Golden Parachute Continues!

Here are Week 37 @Twitstery tweets of “The Golden Parachute” the amazing new sequel to Executive Severance!

“It’s also proof you haven’t. You looked for evidence of wrongdoing at your medical school. Here it is.” “Yes. We have them dead to wrongs.”

“Your father is our proof. We have to get him back to the States in one piece.” “How? We’re in the middle of their campus on their island.”

“There are no flights off the island until the end of the week and no way we can smuggle a cadaver onboard an airplane. We’re trapped!”

“We deserve better.” “True, but what I’m thinking about is the $85,000 I borrowed to finance my degree. I can’t get it back. I’m trapped!”

“You deserve better.” “True. I can’t pay it off if I don’t get my MD. My future patients will settle for another doctor. They’re trapped!”

“They deserve better.” “True. How horrible the way they desecrated my father’s remains, reducing him to an anatomy cadaver. He’s trapped!”

“His body deserves better.” “True. I think I did well on my midterms. Can I transfer to a stateside med school?” “You’re probably trapped.”

“I deserve better.” “True, but if we can’t get off the island, the rest of it is probably moot anyway.” “True. So how do we get untrapped?”

In my pocket I have David’s business card. I recall the air taxi flight: The noise; the acrobatics; the narrow brush with death; the noise.

The idea of another joy ride on David’s Air Taxi Service and Storm Door Company does not especially appeal to me. What are my other options?

I can’t pay Regi’s student loan. I can’t help her transfer or get her an MD. I can’t bring her father back to life but I can bring him home.

I say “I have an idea but I have no cellphone signal. Can I borrow yours?” “My phone? Who are you calling?” “I know a man with a plane.”

“If you have no signal, how are you tweeting all the time?” “I don’t know.” “Is it possible no one is reading your tweets?” “It’s possible.”

On David’s card a yellow biplane spirals out of the air, dogged by Luftwaffe fighters. His slogan reads “We Get You There and Back Again.”

Dialing gets voice mail. “You’ve reached David’s Air Taxi Service and Storm Door Company. Press 1 for flight info. Press 2 for storm doors.”

I press 1. “OK. You want to fly. If you want to fly right now press 1. If you’re not sure when you want to fly, call back later.” I press 1.

“If you are flying alone, press 1. If you are flying with someone else, press 2. If one of your party is deceased, press 3.” Huh? I press 3.

Why would he ask that? Regi makes a hurry-up motion with her hands. “OK. You’re transporting a cadaver. I can help you make arrangements.”

“David, pick up. This is Arkaby.” “Arkaby? Why didn’t you say so?” “What’s with the IVR on your cell phone?” “What are you talking about?”

“The annoying prompts. You don’t have interactive voice response?” “Nope. It’s just me, my vehicles for hire and, of course, storm doors.”

“Weird. It sounded like the IVR at Body Parts R Us.” “Why are you calling?” “Are you still on-island? I need passage for two with baggage.”

(The Twitter Mystery continues daily at @Twitstery)

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Transhumanists Are People Too! – The Golden Parachute Continues!

Here are Week 36 @Twitstery tweets of “The Golden Parachute” the amazing new sequel to Executive Severance!

“I was so busy, first investigating the school stateside. Then the admissions tests and application paperwork. Once I got in, the workload.”

“”All for naught! I’ve discovered nothing except anatomy is hard!” “Regi, this is your father.” “And don’t get me started about biochem!”

“”By the way, who was the woman answering your phone in the middle of the night?” “That’s not important right now. Did you hear what I said?”

“Regi looks at me. “What?” “This is your father.” “Baloney.” She nods toward the cadaver’s erection. “This fellow clearly has been embalmed.”

“”Considering how he split we chose not to have Dad preserved. All that’s left by now is bones and goop.” “Dads make lousy preserves anyway.”

“Regi frowns. Her father, Willum Granger, was cut in two, severed by a tragic combination of fast acting sutures and a call to post ringtone.

“”How can I prove this was your father?” “My Dad had a birthmark on his butt shaped like Philadelphia.” “The city?” “No. The cream cheese.”

“”I don’t know Philadelphia.” Regi lifts up the cadaver. “Let’s take a look. I don’t see a Philly birthmark. This one looks like Houston.”

“”It’s upside down.” “It IS Philadelphia. OH MY GOD!” She drops the body and after pausing briefly throws a modesty cloth over its erection.

“Regi says “I never cared for Philadelphia.” “Houston’s not great either. What was Granger’s connection?” “None. It was just a birthmark.”

“”I may be sick!” “You’re a cop. Get a grip” “No thanks.” Regi peels off her gloves. “How can Dad’s body be intact and be here?” “And why?”

“”Do you finally accept that these are the mortal remains of your father, Willum Granger?” “More like the immortal remains. Isn’t it ironic?”

“”Why is being here ironic?” “He shouldn’t be anywhere.” “You said you didn’t have him embalmed. How do you explain his still being around?”

“”Dad sought immortality through self-cloning and gene manipulation. Maybe altering his DNA made him unpalatable to tissue-eating microbes.”

“”An unexpected consequence of transhumanism.” “Trans what?” “Dad believed in using technology to help humans evolve beyond current limits.”

“”He made himself transhuman to live forever. Now that he’s dead it appears we can’t get rid of him.” “He’s mortally immortal?” “Perhaps.”

“”Transhumanists believe death is not an absolute event. It is a grey area negotiable with modern medicine.” “So the dead can come back?”

“”The point is that reversing the near-death experience lends itself to therapeutic intervention. No one can be reanimated after true death.”

“”Are you sure? Not long ago your father visited my office. He was very animated.” “I don’t know who you saw. It can’t have been my Dad.”

“We look at the cadaver, who may be transhuman, but nonetheless remains inanimate. “Granted, it’s unlikely that I saw your actual father.”

“”He was a convincing restoration and he challenged me to find you.” “And so you have. This cadaver is proof you’ve been chasing shadows.”

(The Twitter Mystery continues daily at @Twitstery)

The Recumbent Dead – The Golden Parachute Continues!



Here are Week 35 @Twitstery tweets of “The Golden Parachute” the amazing new sequel to Executive Severance!

Leaving Yorick to his humerus, I helped Regi up and we walked to the lab next store. “Is that boy peeing in the drinking water?” Regi asks.

“Funny I never noticed that…” Regi turns to the cadaver on the table and freezes. “What is that doing here?” “I thought you could tell me.”

She walks to the table “There are no classes today. Everyone’s still celebrating or sleeping it off. This needs to go back in the fridge.”

“I thought medical cadavers keep forever.” “Nothing keeps forever. This will turn if left out.” “Can’t smell worse.” “You’d be surprised.”

“Why does the University get bodies from a cemetery?” “They can’t.” “Look at the toe tag.” “Founders Cadaver Exchange? That can’t be right.”

“Founders Memorial. That’s where we buried my dad after you closed his case.” “I don’t think so.” “What do you mean?” “Take a closer look.”

“At what?” “Being a Caribbean med school makes it hard to get fresh cadavers. It appears that they traffic in illicit cemetery recyclables.”

“You’re suggesting the University imports illegal cadavers for anatomy?” “If the shoe fits…” “That’s ridiculous. Dead men don’t wear shoes.”

“Each year BMU admits over 1000 medical students who must each cut up a cadaver. How do they provide enough bodies for all those bodies?”

“In addition the University is in perpetual financial distress. They wouldn’t be the first bankrupt business to cut corners to cut costs.”

“You’re saying suffering sustained insolvency, the school supports sundering surreptitiously stolen stiffs?” “I’m not sure I CAN say that.”

“I don’t believe you. Too risky.” “It’s even worse. Does he remind you of someone?” Regi glances at his face. “Corpses all look the same”

“Would it convince you if this wasn’t just you know, some body, but was somebody you know, whose body should still be at Founders Memorial?”

“Arkaby, have you seen a ghost? You’re not usually so tongue-tied.” Coughing out the string, I point to the cadaver. “Take a careful look.”

Regi lifts the head. “Usual anatomy specimen. See the grey skin tone? No red dye in the embalming fluid. Also explains the tumescence.”

“What do you make of the sutures around his middle?” “That is something you don’t often see. He must have undergone some massive trauma.”

Regi isn’t conducting the proper postmortem. Are we certifying her father’s remains or not? What will to take to push her over the edge?

“This body isn’t somebody to you?” “We medical students learn to depersonalize our cadavers.” She lifts the torso. “No sign of… Oh my GOD!”

Maybe she finally makes the connection. “What have you discovered? What’s wrong?” “I just realized. I never returned any of your calls.”

“What?” “All those messages you left me. I never called back.” “That doesn’t matter.” “Except before Hurricane Sandy when I did call you.”

“You called me before Sandy?” “It was late at night. A woman answered and said you were sleeping.” “You’re missing the bigger picture here.”

(The Twitter Mystery continues daily at @Twitstery)

Ne Buvez Jamais D’eau – The Golden Parachute Continues!

Here are Week 34 @Twitstery tweets of “The Golden Parachute” the amazing new sequel to Executive Severance!

Piling some remaining Great Books on the cage kept the monkey in place. Upon my skiing roommate’s return I sent him and his mascot packing.

Alas poor monkey! You lived under interesting tomes! Thoughts of that monkey chase of yore make me hesitate in the Yorick pursuit of now.

There’s no sign of Regi or Yorick. I face a small building with two entrances. Hesitating no more, I choose the one on the left and go in.

I immediately regret my choice. I’ve entered a room that looks like the morgue autopsy room. The smell of formaldehyde is overpowering.

A hauntingly familiar cadaver lies in state on the steel table. On my left someone has mounted a disturbing image:

 
 

Also in view: Hogarth’s “The Reward of Cruelty”

 
and Rowlandson’s “Death in The Dissecting Room.”

Never drink water indeed! What chamber of horrors have I stumbled into? I tear myself away from the prints on the wall and examine the body.

A body on a table. This is my area of expertise. Is there evidence of foul play? The cadaver seems to have an erection. That can’t be right.

Prepped for a gross anatomy lab, the body disturbs me, and not in a homophobic-necrophilia manner. I examine the sutures circling his waist.

Anatomy class usually involves cutting things open or off. Why would someone join these body halves together? I know I’ve seen him before.

The corpse’s toe tag reads “Property of Founders Memorial Cemetery, (Cadaver Exchange). The truth hits me like a reflex hammer to the head.

The French boy was peeing into the water supply! I’m drinking only bottled water from now on. I still don’t know the deal with this cadaver.

Why sever a cadaver? In a flash I realize I’ve been deceived by the bald head and lack of a moustache. The split midriff is a dead giveaway.

Are these the shaven remains of Willum Mortimus Granger I see before me? He’s been dead these four years. I’m mortified! How is it he isn’t?

At least I think he’s dead four years. First his spirit visited my office and sent me on this dismal mission. Now his sheared body shows up.

Regi can identify her father’s body. I must find her, fast. As I leave the lab I notice more prints:

“How practical?”

Even worse is this one:

“Business is business?” What sort of medical training are they giving students at this school?

In the lab next door Regi slumps on the floor while nearby, Yorick inspects a human humerus. Lifting her head she says “I’m tiring him out.”

I say “You’re doing fine. In a few hours he’ll have the complete skeleton.” “You’re not helping.” “Maybe you can lure him into a rib cage.”

Regi sits up.”Will you help me catch Yorick?” “Will you come back to the States with me?” “Nothing you say can make me change my mind.”

“I don’t need to say anything.” “Good. You’re finally making sense. “I don’t need to make sense.  I need your opinion about something.”

(The Twitter Mystery continues daily at @Twitstery)

You Monkey, You! – The Golden Parachute Continues!

Here are Week 33 @Twitstery tweets of The Golden Parachute the amazing new sequel to Executive Severance!

“How do “we” do that?” “Don’t know. Never chased a monkey before.” “I have.” “Huh?” “Let’s just say I handled evidence that handled back.”

“You know how to catch monkeys?” “Sure. All I need is a tranquilizer syringe, a big butterfly net, a small harness and a bunch of bananas.”

“Here’s my plan. Distract Yorick with bananas, net him, tranquilize him, harness him and cage him.” “There are two problems with your plan.”

First, we don’t have those things.” “You don’t have bananas?” “Yes, we have no bananas. They’re grown for export.” “And the other problem?”

“Yorick has left the building.” Where monkey and skull had been only skull remains. Regi dashes to the exit. “Quick! We have to catch him!”

I shout “Have you ever caught a monkey?” “No!” She dashes out the door. When I get to the hallway neither Regi nor Yorick are in sight.

Regi has never tried to catch a monkey. Best to leave her to it. I once had a roommate who brought home a pet monkey and then went skiing.

The monkey escaped his cage and climbed atop our built-in bookshelf. I came home to find him tearing pages out of The Works of Shakespeare.

Disclosing no particular dramaturgical preference, he littered the room with folio fragments from comedies, tragedies and histories alike.

“You monkey, you,” I shook a finger at him “you give me back my book!” The monkey only shook his finger back at me and said, “Tsz Tsz Tsz.”

Angry, I shook both hands at him “You monkey, you! You give me back my book!” The monkey shook both hands back at me and said “Tsz Tsz Tsz.”

Now I felt quite angry. I stamped my foot “You monkey you! You give me back my book!” He stamped his foot back at me and said “Tsz Tsz Tsz.”

Now really very, very angry, I stamped both feet “You monkey, you! Give me back my book!” He stamped both feet back and said “Tsz Tsz Tsz.”

I became so angry I pulled off my cap, threw it down and began to walk away. The Shakespeare Folio came flying down and hit me in the head.

Then the monkey began tearing pages out of my first edition copy of Finnegans Wake. I figured it wouldn’t make any difference, so I let him.

I couldn’t just leave a monkey up there on my bookshelf. I didn’t like the way he was looking at me. Or at my other books, for that matter.

Donning a heavy coat, hat, gloves, boots and ski goggles for protection, I effected his capture. It was lucky there were no eyewitnesses.

Actually, it took a four hour chase ‘til he collapsed and I could drop a cage on him. Then I collapsed. From the cage he said “Tsz Tsz Tsz.”

As I lay drenched in sweat, I spotted a note from my roommate: “Here’s our new mascot! Not named yet. Don’t let him get out of the cage.”

My roommate’s note continued: “Hitting the slopes. Back Monday. Monkey chow in fridge. Have a great weekend!” The monkey said “Tsz Tsz Tsz.”

I didn’t know anything about keeping a monkey happy or more important, in his cage. I did know one thing for sure: I needed a new roommate.
(The Twitter Mystery continues daily at @Twitstery)