The underlying message in this chapter, of course, involves one's relationship with one's own self. I'm not going to get into all of the philosophical and/or religious aspects of this concept...though I have my personal beliefs on such things, as I imagine most anyone that reads this also does. The spiritual concepts of our dual nature of being have been explored and explained by much brighter people than I over the millennia already, so there's no need for me to do it again. No, I'm attempting to take the very scientific position that we each have our own unique perspective on things based upon countless factors...and that it's very difficult (if not impossible) for us to be objective when it comes to describing ourselves to others. As humans, we have a tendency either to under or overestimate ourselves in many respects. It's just what we do, it seems to me. Remember how weird it sounded when you heard an audio recording of your own voice for the first time? Or how weird you looked the first time you saw video footage of yourself? Even looking in the mirror can be awkward at times. And that's nothing more than a reflection! But even looking in the mirror or watching a video isn't the same as actually being in the same room with another physical being that also happens to be YOU. From an empathic standpoint, is looking deep into your own eyes in a mirror's reflection the same as it would be actually looking into a separate being's eyes who happened to be YOU? Honestly, I don't know. And that's something I'm wondering if I can figure out as I write this chapter...but only for fun...not for scientific reasons. If nothing else, the reader will get a good look at how I see myself...for better or for worse, whether the same or different from how others see me.
We're going to handle character dialogue in this chapter the same as we did in Part I of Chapter 36, which is to say their words will be color coded rather than using quotation marks...again, so that we don't have to deal with the "he said," and then she replied..." stuff. I'm copying and pasting the color chart now from part I so you don't have to remember or leave the page. Remember if you're reading this on a mobile device, you can scroll all the way to the bottom of the page and switch to "WEB" instead of the default "MOBILE" to see the text in their respective colors (the text will all be black with a white background if you don't change this setting).
Kev will speak in Purple
My beautiful gatekeeper, Madeleine, the Albino Peacock (Peahen) will speak in White
Kev with a turtle on his shoulder will speak in Orange
Dee-Dee the Turtle (upon Kev's shoulder) will speak in Blue
Both Cousin Eddie's will speak in Red
Olga the bartender fairy will speak in Yellow
Edwin the Bee will speak in the same Green as the general story-telling segments
And so now, on with the conclusion to Chapter 36:
So we have good news and bad news, my beautiful gatekeeper.
But mostly good news, Madeleine!
Ahh, yes, I see! But I'm not sure which part you're considering the bad news yet. I'm assuming you've both decided that having two of you around is good news? And you didn't explode, so that's good news too, right?
Yes! See, you know me so well, beautiful gatekeeper!
And me too, Madeleine, yes! You know me so well too!
And so the bad news would be that neither of you have any clue as to why there are now two Kev's in the Sacred Garden?
Yep. Right again. You're so clever, Madeleine.
I was going to say that too!
I know, haha! But I beat you too it! *High five*
Oy vey...this is going to be a complete disaster. I can feel it already. Hopefully Mitzy will be here with our shipment soon. I'm going to need extra wine to get through this fiasco. I can feel that too! In the meantime, do you two have a plan yet as to how to figure out why this happened so that we can work out a solution?
Well, not really no, Madeleine. But we have a pretty good idea I think to get us started.
Yes, yes, beautiful gatekeeper, it's not like we're not doing anything. We've already worked out a way to begin working on it.
We have? I mean, yes...we have.
Ohh I can't wait to hear this...I'm sure it's some sort of brilliant way to pretend you're doing something while actually doing nothing. Oh how you excel at that!
We'll report back to your shortly, beautiful gatekeeper.
Yes, we're going to the Persian rug to get my notebook. Then we can show you our plan.
Yes, exactly. Our plan that I already mentioned to you.
It was actually quite pleasant walking with myself through my Sacred Garden. En route to the Persian rug, the two me's discussed our lack of a plan...but also took time to admire one another, of course. We considered holding hands for a moment, but ultimately decided against it. Turns out there are some things that are too strange and awkward even for ME. We did manage to confirm, however, that we both had Casio communicator watches on our left wrists--and Dragon's Eyes in our pockets. This was indeed a most mysterious mystery...one that would not easily be solved. Dee-Dee, the gorgeous Turtle upon my shoulder was taking a nap, we went ahead and assumed, since she was inside her shell and had made no sounds at all since we were at Madeleine's desk, Achilles' Last Stand.
The two me's found Cousin Eddie thumbing through our record collection when we arrived at the Persian rug. Cousin Eddie, ever being Cousin Eddie, didn't seem concerned or even surprised to see that there were now two Kev's. He only greeted us politely, and tossed us each a can of beer. We all three toasted and chugged down our beers. Then the other me retrieved my notebook.
You're not surprised that there's two of me, Cousin Eddie?
Not in the least, Mr. Kev. We live in a strange and magical place. Things like this happen sometimes, you know. It's no big deal. Besides, I ran into another ME, too. No explosions, no drama. It was actually pretty cool. Two Cousin Eddie's means twice as many beer can creations built in half the time!
Wait a minute! So we have two Kev's AND two Cousin Eddie's running around in the Sacred Garden?!
Generally, yes. But at the moment, no. My other me is at the Sacred Pub, enjoying some well-earned leisure. And I know you're going to ask, so the answer is no...we decided not to tell Madeleine. We're enjoying myself, and we figured there was no reason to get her going. I open cans of beer, not cans of worms, lol. And speaking of cans of beer...here...catch! A toast: To all the Kev's and all of the Cousin Eddie's here and everywhere!
And hear, hear!
Uh-oh, dudes...Madeleine just messaged me on my Casio communicator watch. She seems upset.
She says we need to get...
Our trouble-making asses to Achilles' Last Stand right away...yes, I got the message too. So what are we going to tell her our plan is? Just mark things down under the good and bad columns in the notebook, and tally them up as we watch carefully for clues to an actual solution?
Yep, I think it's our best angle for now. We both know she's not going to like it, but at least it's something, right?
Good luck, Kev's.
Oh, no, Cousin Eddie, you're coming with us! We're gonna need my soulmate for this!
Fine, fine, Mr. Kev.
It was a slow, slow march back to Achilles' Last Stand. We stalled as long as we could, without it looking as though we were stalling. Believing in our own foolish way, as we do, that Madeleine might not be on to us...but knowing full well in our hearts that she's always a few steps ahead of us. That's what makes her such a great gatekeeper, you know. And a pain in our trouble-making asses...albeit a beautiful pain. Once we arrived at Madeleine's desk, it went about as both of me imagined it would:
Oh, so nice to see you again, Kev...and Kev...and one of the Cousin Eddies! Yes, I know ALL about the other Cousin Eddie! You fools...all of you! Olga just messaged me to let me know Cousin Eddie has had far too many Minute Meads, and someone needs to come and walk him home from the Sacred Pub. Isn't that just lovely?! Shall I just send over the other Cousin Eddie to do it? I'm sure that will work out so fabulously.
Actually, beautiful gatekeeper, it's funny you should mention the Sacred Pub...seems like perfect timing. See, we've got my notebook, and we were going to take it to the Sacred Pub and start doing some investigating...start getting to the bottom of this strange occurrence, you know. There are some clever folks there...especially Olga.
The bottom of a few Minute Meads, I'd wager! Investigating, my ass!
Pardon me, Madeleine, but please lower your voice? Dee-Dee is still sleeping.
Nope. I'm awake now.
And you stop snickering, please, Cousin Eddie. You know damn well what I meant.
Look, Madeleine, see? We've created two columns in my notebook...one for good things about there being two of me, and the other for bad things about there being two of me. We've already began filling some things in. We feel that through the course of the sun and moon-greeting we'll be able to tally enough goods and bads. Then we can weigh them against each other, and possibly find some clues as to how this came to be in the first place.
Completely asinine and useless! But that's just perfect for you! And you don't have anything written down under the bad column, by the way. And it's so nice you were finally able to really hug yourself for the first time. Of course that would be a really good thing in your book!
See, you know me so well, my beautiful gatekeeper! And that's a very good thing. I'm going to write that down under the good column!
Oh, yes! Definitely write that down there...she knows us so very well! See, we're already making progress!
So that's progress?! How do you deal with this Madeleine?
Oh, so now the Turtle decides to speak?
I have a name, you know. And you better be nice to me. You just never know how I may be able to help you.I'm a very intelligent Turtle. As the REAL Kev knows!
Hey, it's okay, Dee-Dee. I'm sure the other Kev didn't mean any personal offense. He's me, you know. I'm sorry, gorgeous, intelligent Turtle.
REAL Kev? The "other" Kev?! Dude...I'm YOU! We're in this together. And if anyone is the REAL Kev, it's ME. I'm the one that's been here all along.
No, I'm the original Kev that's always been here. Cousin Eddie knows!
Leave me out of this, dudes. Here, have another beer.
Oh yes, more beer is definitely going to help us solve this mess! Great! Wonderful. Actually, what the hell...toss me one of those too, please, Cousin Eddie. And Dee-Dee?
Yes, please. Though I prefer wine.
The wine will be here shortly, Dee-Dee. I know that for sure because I handle ordering our shipments from Mitzy. If Kev or Kev handled it we'd never have anything!
How can YOU be the original Kev?! You just got here...with a Turtle--sorry, Dee-Dee--on your shoulder that no one else has ever known!
Ahh, I see you are enjoying this far too much, Edwin! Don't think I don't see you over there snickering from atop your lotus flower. You know something, don't you?
Ohh, indeed. I know everything...as you well know..both of you Kev's.
So tell us. Please? Tell us so that we can figure out what happened and how we can fix it?
So now that things are awry, you have time for dear old Edwin, do you? You humans really are so pathetic at times. But I'm going to do you a tremendous favor, Kev, my son...I'm going to stay out of this and let you figure it all out yourself--with yourself. I know you can do it. If you really want to. That's how you'll learn, you see. Besides, as you already mentioned, I'm enjoying this far too much to have it end so quickly, lol.
Well, You did tell me to learn to love myself as a spouse rather than as a mistress, Edwin. I haven't forgotten that. If nothing else, this will be a way of putting that concept to the test.
That is a very cogent thought, Kev. And a great start toward solving your latest dilemma.
Umm, excuse me, but have you imbeciles forgotten we still have the problem of there being at least two Cousin Eddie's now too? That we know of! There could be multiples of BOTH of you that we just haven't come across yet. And if there are multiple Kev's and Cousin Eddie's, that means there could also be multiple others...Dear Caesar's, Ptolemy's, T-Yays, Caw-Caw Carl's...and on an on. I don't think you're realizing how serious this whole thing is.
Oh, yes, yes...of course! Two Cousin Eddie's...I forgot to write that down in the good column!
Ohh, indeed, that's a good good thing! Two soulmates. Writing that down right now!
Thank you Mr. Kev! Cheers!
Of course you would write that down under the good column! I'm surprised you guys didn't make a good good column too! Noooo...forget that I said that. Please don't do that. I was only joking.
Umm, Cousin Eddie, can I have another one of those beers?
Of course you can, gorgeous and intelligent Turtle Dee-Dee! Cheers! But drink it up quick...we've got to go to the Sacred Pub and get drunk me out of there before Olga the bartender fairy bans us all. You know how she gets when I get too drunk.
Actually, I don't. We've only just met, you know?
Well I know, haha! Remember that time Olga confiscated your remote control patrol jeep?
How could I forget? Ahh, what a night that was!
Indeed! Here here!
Now go, go, you imbeciles! And try and come back with some useful information please? And Dee-Dee, take some of these kale chips with you. You're going to need them for sure!
And so two Kev's--one with a gorgeous and intelligent turtle named Dee-Dee upon his shoulder--and one Cousin Eddie were off to the Sacred Pub to retrieve the other Cousin Eddie who was too drunk to stay there. What could possibly go wrong?
We'll find out in part III of this chapter, when I get around to writing it. Hopefully soon.
Thank you all for reading and just generally for being along on my crazy journey.
Beautiful of beautifuls!
I love you
I love you