A Van Raft Christmas: Page 2 of 4 Pages

. . . and just eggzactly what’s all that got to do with furniture anyway , eh

IMMORTAL  MORTALS

THE  GREAT  MEDIA  PARTY  IN  THE  SKY

PART  I I

LITTLE  DID  THEY  KNOW

isn’t it funny how when you’re havin’ a good time , time seems to  fly , and since none of our friends wore a watch they had to look up to the sky , and since they could still see the moon they knew it was still well before noon , and since the moon cave restaurant tavern in greenwood on the danforth was just ‘round the corner , mr. jupiter , with his big boomin’ voice suggested that his uncle’s might just be the spot for breakfast

. . . as you can probably well imagine the gang was lookin’ a little rough by now , but our cordial host mr. mom , who was an early morning partier himself , didn’t even mind . . as he actually howled right along with the rest of the crew

. . . everyone settled in for a delightful breakfast of freshly squeezed concentrated anita bryant , eggs benedict , and of course , you got it , zookini omelette . . . not only that , but as it happens , we were there just in time to catch mad man connors and his scruffy pack holding court on the airwaves of his early morning radio show . . in what to some might have appeared to be a dream . . just down the stream . . at the good old curved space ship , where the danforth flows into the mighty yonge

. . . and what a scruffy pack it was . . why there was danny the rock ‘n roll kid , whodad , muriel the R. D. R. lady , R. J. , wolfman jack , tasha , wooden , A. N. A. , the all night andy , and his bride to be . . page six , chickenman , dave know it all the other , glen cochran , carole pope , the reverend ralph rock , this twelve piece high school marching band , larry  from mothers , a white java temple bird called one guy , michael , andrea , and robbie van raft , mark the quark , a magical chinese zoo carpet , boo hoo , this faded , age - old yellow ‘n white sabre toothed tiger on a field of blue , scruff’s straight man eddy as wally , june as mrs. cleaver , gene gene , the beaver , and of course , YFAM  lou , their fearless leader . . all decked out and sittin’ there all dapper , between the sheets , and in the arms of their cuddly dream weaver

. . . and just in time too , to witness mr. connors , lookin’ a bit like a nutcase himself , in his floppy sandman hat , sunglasses , ‘n  hospital greens , and/or his producer lee eggley  put their names into music history , by fusin’ this wacky chicken  mr. mueller had brought in to liven up the show , with the beatles’ sergeant peppers hit “ good morning ”

 . . . think about it . . SWITCH . . mornin’ . .  mornin’ . .  mornin’  mr. dressup . . SWITCH . . and you’ll recall there’s a sheep dog barkin’ , and a chicken just a cluckin’ ‘n  a  buckin’ right at the end of the song

. . . well our friend , who we might just as well call wings , couldn’t believe what she heard . . she flips right out , and lets out one of the most freaked out buck , buck , buck , BAAACKS , you ever heard . . SWITCH . . one , two , three , four . . SWITCH . . of course all the zoo faithful couldn’t believe what they heard either . . . there they were scratchin’ their heads , and wondrin’ if they heard what they heard . . hay , what was that . . was that for real . .  was that what they heard . . was that subliminal madness . .  a cheap publicity stunt . . or was that just the beatles comin’ through live

. . . and would you believe lou our fearless leader havin’ a nervous breakdown right then ‘n  there . . . if you can’t stand the heat lou , you shouldn’t play in the kitchen

. . . lou looks over at mr. mueller , all spiffy in his blue blazer ‘n grey flannels , that he still had from his military college days  on the banks of the richelieu -- not you lou . . . right , now lou looks over at mr. mueller , who earlier that week had offered him a dozen fresh eggs  --  thanks to the girls  --  and unwittingly screams    “hay , is this your show or mine      . . get that  b . . . . y  chicken off the stage “

. . . well that was that . . our wings , who had just gotten over the last one , flips right out again . . . and then , you got it , we’ve got mr. mueller crawlin’ all over his sofas ‘n beds , and sofas that flip into beds , and rafts that are really sofas , but look a lot more like beds . . dreaming about chicken shit sales , giant muffins , and rafted houseboats , with built in hot tubs . . SWITCH . . i’m confused by the things that you do . . SWITCH . . quickly , finally , half an hour later , mr. mueller thinks he has our feathered friend cornered in this multi - colored - mirrored cube  . .  preenin’  herself ,  playin’ camouflage games , ‘n strutting her stuff . . . “this is my chance” thinks mr. mueller, all poised on the arm of a sofa . . he dove at wings . . wings does this dainty little sidestep . . and then it’s mr. mueller lookin’ at himself again . . . fear not though fearless  readers , for as luck would have it , wings flies right into the cube

. . . ” thank the lord”  says looney lou  . .  “ i like it ”  says the rev  . .  “count me out” says the count  . . . and so he , the captain , and this particular jay , headed off to the dock of the bay  . . . and now there were only 62 . . 62  comrades all ready to play , and play , and play . .  in the . . you got it lou . . the hay

Let me take you back in time and space to a time when Scruff Connors , a chicken called Wings , and you friend and mine , Lou completely changed the course of radio history with their hysterical antics on the Q107 morning show coming to you direct from our flagship store at Yonge and Bloor

IMMORTAL MORTALS

as if you couldn’t see this one comin’ . . . after all it was just a question of time before someone somewhere would ask our cosmic duo to appear sometime . . . but as secret mystery guests on a dozen or so radio stations at the same time                    . . . well now , that’s another story

. . . come join us then as we look in on ‘em as they not only monitor themselves , but also study the synchronicity of five TV channels at the same time . . . let’s watch how they heat ‘n stir that delightfully thick media soup of carrots , tomatoes , cauliflower , barley , ‘n  corn . . . let’s let ‘em savour it for a while . . . and then let’s tune in as the lads walk that thin red line . . SWITCH . . tell us gentlemen just how do you keep comin’ up with story after story , time after time , without even missing a beat . . . right ,  if these tales were true it wouldn’t be nearly so hard comin’ up with a new one every week , so today for a change of pace , we thought we might just tell you a little tale that’s actually true

. . . many moons ago , early in the morning , and right in the midst of the then toronto we decided to spend a little time visitin’ our not quite so wild friend at the good old wiverdale zoo . . . as we came around this corner in the big animal exhibit , we couldn’t believe our fortune as we happened upon these two heavenly nuns . . . to our dismay , the two sisters suddenly put their hands in front of their mouths , lifted up their long dresses , ‘ n scurried off to somewhere in nowhere -- nowhere land

 . . . you can imagine our curiosity to see just what form of beast might have inspired such thoughts , even if from behind bars . . SWITCH . . if i built a fortress around your heart . . SWITCH . . you got it , our mischievous trouble maker was this giant ape NO 1944--80--92 A , who we’ll just call abe for short

. . . now abe wasn’t exactly your average monkey , ‘n neither was his cage . . . you see , somewhere in the past he must’ve expressed his feelings by greeting an unsuspecting demoiselle in a slightly more overt fashion

. . . in order to moderate this rather creative flaw in his behaviour the authorities must’ve decided to separate him from his admirers with a glass partition six  feet out from his bars . . SWITCH . . blue , blue , windows behind the stars . . SWITCH . . so when friends ‘n  relatives came to visit abe they’d throw him peanuts over the glass shield . . . abe’d enjoy eatin’  ‘em for his friends . . . first he’d eat all the nuts in his cage , and then all the nuts between the bars ‘n the glass that he could reach . . . but what about the ones he couldn’t reach . . what about the ones in what he called nowhere -- nowhere land . . SWITCH . .  what does it take . . SWITCH . . fear not though fearless  readers for our abe wasn’t without his devices . . . for as luck would have it our dear friend had this tire in his cage . . and not even a monkey wrench to boot . . SWITCH . . we built this city on rock ‘n roll . . SWITCH . . abe’d give you this whimsical , all - knowing look , and then he’d saunter over to his tire . . he’d rip off a strip of rubber 7”x 1” . . concentrate on the end of it ‘til his eyeballs almost collided . . bite off 1/16”of an inch . . delicately peel this 1/16” strip -- with eyeballs widening -- almost to the other end . . flip it ‘round . . bite off 2/16” . . and repeat this process ‘til he had fashioned a 104” or thereabouts , give or take a half inch on ends – hey, is this australian rules football jargon or sumpin’ – long rubber string . . or to simplify the commentary , how about an eight and a half foot line . . SWITCH . . aha . . SWITCH . . and then , without a word of a lie , abe’d  put one arm through the bars of his cage , and the other arm through the gap four bars over . . . he’d grab the other end of the string . . and then , you got it , he’d lasso all those pesky little peanuts he couldn’t reach before . . SWITCH . . if i could grow things i would give you the sky . . SWITCH

. . . at about this point in time the boys spotted an old friend spittin’ back at this outrageous llama called d’masho , and would you believe , d’masho didn’t even mind . . . it was none other than the son of chicken man , and your friend and mine , captain amnesia , and the party really began to warm up

. . . the capt’n ‘n the boys kibitz around about with all the captive critters , discussin’  the nuances and rather eccentric nature of the english language . . SWITCH . . you gotta  get in to get out . . SWITCH . . in particular they dwelt upon the intrinsic nature of the word “through” . . . the fact that the ”R” and the “U” – not to be confused with are you – of course not you silly old fool – are in fact the only letters that sound like what they are . . . not only that but upon further investigation it became apparent that the last two letters of the word “through” are also the first two letters of the word “ghost”

. . . as you can imagine , this kind of speculation was just the kind of talk all the inmates needed to get ‘em  goin’ again  . . . they began dreamin’ of fresh air,  fields , and trees again . . . little did they know , eh . . .

. . . and whether or not these thoughts had anything to do with a new wilderness park that was about to become their new home just outside of the city is something that we’ll never know . . . one thing that we do know however , is that on their way our resident philosophers met mr. jupiter and fred , of CN tower and starwars fame ,  hangin’ round a den on mars , and tellin’ tall tales about a jug-jawed species of sheep , who were so gentle that they actually laid eggs . . . so that they might also have something to count

. . . count me in , says the count . . . and now there were ten . . ten comrades . . ten comrades actually headin’ out of town , and singin’  ‘n   playin’  “you can count on me”

PART IV

THE HOUSE THAT CAPT CONNIE SMYTHE BUILT

. . . since our dear friends were doin’ just swell we thought we might just take a break from our journey to check out the harold ballard wilderness youth project in action . . . we had already heard old carrot top beseech his crew  “come garden with me"  said  he “ and verily i say unto you , that those who stay to play , shall rise from the swamp , create energy with energy , transcend mortality , enter into eternity , and yay though you have come through the valley of the depressed , you shall never have to fear the wrath of the great subterranean exterminator again”

 . . . hearing these words the faithful exploded , not unlike seeds into spring . . with a newfound vigour , measured only in exponential terms , and unparalleled in modern times . . . this time it became clear that they had truly come to play

. . . not only that , but at about the same time our faithful publisher fearin’ that our recent exercise in verbal gymnastics , and our change of direction , might have tended to confuse your average reader . . whilst at the same time leavin’ others oh so far behind . . . you can imagine andré sheepishly dropping gentle hints , empty projections , ‘n obtuse suggestions , that we re-introduce more of what this had to do with furniture . . . quite true . . no problem . . just ask his wilderness harold , and he’ll be the first to tell ya that a sense of equilibrium and timing is paramount in these matters . . . win or lose , let us always remember , lest we forget , that it’s really how you play the game . . or is it . . . of course not stupid . . we’re winnin’  aren’t we . . . and how are you . . just  flyin’ . . thanks again mr. clark – not to be confused with joke or kent – you know you’re a friend of mine

. . . in case you were havin’ a hard time keepin up . . let it suffice to say that we regret -- just jokin’ of course – that due to a slight variance between our time , air time , ‘n your time , there may be some irregularities in synchronicity , and/or distortions in time ‘n space . . . fear not though fearless readers , for these changes are not uncommon in the time warps that generally accompany oscillations in the realm beyond the speed of light  . . . relative to what . . . why shy you , of course , silly

NOTE ON DAYLIGHT SAVINGS TIME

all overlooked by

cedars , sumacs , hemlocks , poplars , and maples

that have been known to roam

. . . well below their dear friends pushed off their rickety old  row boats . . their names etched in the early morning sun . . in pinks , ‘n greens , ‘n yellows , ‘n red . . proud names such as  VINCENT , MISS  T , GROG  E , and of course  THE FRED SEA DOBBS  to name just a few

SIX  SISTERS   .  .  THE   ISLANDS  IN  THE  SKY

from the crow’s nest atop old faithful the giant old maple

that overlooked our mystical gardens of ballard

 trusty rusty the squirrel could catch the tower of babel and it’s satellite globe

at the same time some were better stayin’  sailors . . ROW . . ROW . . ROW . .  and all together now

. . . and  with the capable assistance of that legendary wilderness vet dr. wolf van raft , lookin’ quite dapper in his bran new uncle bobby glasses , our wealthy philanthropist friends ,  their media pals , a delightful band of enlightened compassionate leafs of impeccable character , the harold ballard wilderness youth program , and the entire zoo , worked their transplant magic just for you . . and right on Q . . as they brought

the country back to the city

or in other words

they brought the country back from the country to the city

for those of us here in the city who’d like to be back in the country too

HOE . . HOE . . HOE

. . . and just in time too

for the buds were a  poppin’

the sun a  shinin’ , the eggs a  hatchin’ , and the juice just a flowin’ 

. . . TURN . . TURN . . TURN . . .

and we had transplants

why we had transplants of all sorts

transplants of mossy stones  and caterpillars and gnomes

. . .  and of hummingbirds in orchids , trilliums ,  jack in the pulpits

and pink lady slippers just a glowin’

and finches, in gentle birches

balsam firs , spruces, and magnificent pines perches

 

. . . all saved by rafted helicopters

from precarious cliffs overlooking meandering streams

where fortune had seen them

blown

of terns ‘n ferns by waterfalls

and the peaceful ponds

red winged black birds liked to call their homes

 . . . or how about blue berries , black berries , raspberries

. . . and comfrey . . .

known in old english as knitbone

and all the other marvellous herbs ‘n spices that draw from the earth exactly what it takes to help your mind , your heart

and even your bones

nor should we ever forget all our darling little deer mice

the tricky little chipmunks

and all the other happy little elves

that’d love to set up their magical little homesteads

in great old sweeping weeping willows

that could actually be heard to  moan and groan 

not to mention the lightning  ,  and  the thunder

. . . and all those busy little insects

as they scurry  up down and all around all the funny little clovers

the dandelions

and all those big fat old mushrooms

.  .  far far  .  . from where they had been sown

. . . and of course of john and johnny appleseed

come back to save entire populations of apple orchards

from a phantom monster called urban sprawl

for you awl before everything was blown

. . . and you got it . . you got it all . . . all . . . that’s right all . . and all , all absolutely free . . .

or as they say in the world of the birds and the bees . . . 

IF 1983 WAS THE YEAR OF THE TREE , THEN 1984 WOULD NEVER BE

. . . and now it was row to the left . . then row to the right

. . as our beloved islands drifted slowly from sight

. . . and then it was the sun , that’s right , you got it ,  the sun shinin’ with all her might . . hopin’ somehow to make the billows all big , soft , ‘n bright . .  what a beautiful sight . . and just in time too . .  for tired eyes pretending to be all polite

. . . yes indeed we had clouds and sea breezes . . . and flyin’ fish tellin’ tales of terns ‘n gulls , and  THE CU8  , the carleton university rowing team . . . but wait . . hold on , hold on for just a moment . . what was that . . was that not  . . oh no , it just couldn’t be . . could it now . . . for what at first a sail appeared to be . . was in fact bigger many times more than three

. . . and you got it , comin’ in , and comin’ in just in time , and never even worrying about who was first , was a silent crew who never had to worry about thirst

. . . for from high up above , and still further below , come to join us now a collection of five magnificent , long-necked snow geese , and a gaggle of nonsensical , fat artists who didn’t even have to row . . . that’s right , come to join us now were the people who love to play . . . come all the way from yuk yuk  ‘n  tuk tuk , and other floatin’ hamlets all alike  . . all in the company of their pet penguins , ‘n seals . . and bears all dressed in white . . . carvin’  their egg-shaped heirlooms into lucky soapstones . . . and green ones , and brown ones , and variations of other clones

. . . and all together now . . and with every passing moment . . lookin’ more like that veritable arc . . and all for art’s sake . . art who thought it was at  OCA  where he was goin’ to preside . . . but when he got there – walkin’  ‘n  lookin’ like a penguin himself – he found he was wrong

. . . so let’s sneak up on ‘em then and catch them in their dreams . . . wake up , wake up , wake up mr. dress up . . oh no , not the mr. dress up . . the mr. dress up of mrs. dress up fame . . the mr. dress up , who in an earlier time  had transformed a snake into a raft , chatting it up with a kermity muppet called ted . . . but when he found out what he had done , ted almost flipped out , and went for a great big run

we can imagine ted askin’ mr. dress up to be careful not to turn him into a piece of furniture too . . . this amused all our little salts . . as they, their secret philanthropist friends , and the entire set design crew from the journal played their decorator games . . . decorator games of legendary  missions and spacey transmissions . . all in blues and purples  and magentas . . with highlights in mauve

. . . it was fun to watch our friends as they joked and whistled as they played . . with pockets of reeds . . replaced by some with seeds , and still others with beads . . . and blocks of foam . . . all covered in fat sumptuous colourful fabrics , and soft , silken pillows . . . stitched , here and there , with threads of silver . . and with the likes of intelligent velcro to hold everything tight . . . and made just right . . . to fit your dog , your cat . . or maybe even , your very own home

. . . and oh how about all that fluffy stuff . . you know the kind of stuff . . the kind of stuff that puffy clouds , draped under bright lights and blue skies should be made of . . . and all held high with great tall bronzed mirrors . . and the walls of the celebrity pet portrait gallery . . complete with all kinds of card playing dogs and wild brightly coloured birds in big friendly trees . . . til their perspective was just enough

. . . and oh wasn’t that chauncy the gardener . . . of course not silly that was only clancy and the kids puttin’ the final touches to  “inside out”      . . the , by now , classical neanderthal contemplation room . . a room like no others . . . a space where vines ‘d love to climb trees covered with beautiful white flowers and hanging mosses overlooking waterfalls .  . . and all kinds of refreshing frogs on logs . .  pollywogs . . not to mention those fancy painted turtles and chameleons  . . who’d appear and then quickly disappear . . on great giant prehistoric rocks

. . . and now , and would you believe , even sharing their thoughts with the music and the magic of the willows . .  a gentle rustle in the cattails . . and even the fragrance of the water lilies that graced the wonderful reflecting ponds a paradise come true in a dream that was real

. . . and so it was that the captain , the gardener , and this particular ted helped the kids , til they too could help themselves . . . and all our little ones learned their lessons well , as they manned the lines , and really got into gear . . . for after all isn’t that why we’re here . . . and last but not least , we had reginald the third , this transylvanian count . . . all slicked down , and polished , and ready to count

LOVE  .  .  .  LOVE  IS  A THING  THAT  WE  ALWAYS  WILL  SHARE

LITTLE  SARAH  FULLER  8  .  .  .  TORONTO  MAY  25  ,  1987

 . . the time has come , the walrus said to do so many things . . of sticks and stones , and the shells called holmes . . . of carpenters ‘n masons and bucky beavers . . . good friends to all . . . and of a pontifax john , and little john , his dreamweaver . . . of the sheep that count the magic wands called hands . . and the special smiles of silly sally , the seamstress for the band . . . now wouldn’t that be grand . . . and of course of  WVRVW the peace brothers , come back to give us all a hand

Chapter : 8 : It’s  Up  Up  Up And  Away 

EARLY  SUNDAY  MORNING

and dum dee dum , and dum dee dee , and of course , you got it , our secret mystery guests were really none other than twiddle dee dum and twiddle dee dee , our trusty old radio chum , and his younger sister the TV

. . . thank Q . . i needed that . . . and so it was that our friends continued to kavort and kibitz around until well into morn . . . and there was no one too important not to show . . . and to top it all off everyone left their egos . . where . . why , you know , back behind , in the tricky old clothing box where jack sleeps , silly eh

. . . and now just back from “ uncle albert “ the celebrity pet portrait room , complete with all the fanfare befitting just such an occasion , we had  J.T.  and his muppety pals garfield and theodore , and all their unbelievable brown bear buddies , including sheb wooly , harry larry , curley casey , his tremendous sidekick the fridge , and this little squirt of a bear , called bucky beaver , our proverbial tour guide , and an already highly accomplished home builder . . . and then ready or not , guess what , guess who we caught . . . why it was none other than david  “ i’ll catch you in the wings “  bendith practicing his hooks ‘n ladders , and even crafting all the lyrics with mike healy , a new world wordsmith . . that’s wright come to join us now a long distance receiver . . come all the way from the backwoods not far from the sound , and of gypsy wind fame . . . and last but not least we had YPAM shakey, our pet door mouse , decked out in the height of fashion in his bran new tux , and made custom from scratch , and personal , just for you

FOREVER  YOUNG  .  .  .  and suddenly we have friends in front of us , and friends behind . . . in fact friends all around us now . . . hay is this a parade or something . . says van raft to van winkle . . . and tales of winking vans with outstretched hands . . banana splits , and talking dogs . . and even the precision of a high school marching band . . . and oh wow, check out those flying penguins . . desperately tryin’ to hold onto all those crazy hopped up balloons . . . and here comes an elephant with great big fat ears . . surrounded by , you got it , an outrageous collection of hiding ‘n sliding harmonicas , a couple of swingin’ good old fashioned yo yos , and a quintet of five . . just back from the hive

. . . and what’s more , who was that on the floor . . . followed quite closely by the strangest bunch of outlandish nutcases in rolling sticks . . . we were quite amazed to sea how they amused themselves as they crawled up the tiny little hills on their float . . only to pull in their curious little heads , hands , and feet . . and roll wright back on down . . . far out thought the freckled twig and all his funny little cosmic communicator pals – all retrieved from under the house in the land of glad  . . retrieved from dirty old garbage bags where the dogs used to sleep -- and that according to legend , had heretofore never been sold , and that according to the freckled twig were only to be given to the kids at christmas -- indeed there was hope  . . . and oh here comes count reginald  the third of lichtenstein , our mustachioed , and betassled quartermaster , and YFAM reginald snavely , his sister sally , and their wonderdog WC finnegan , harriet , and jerome . . . not to mention mark , jim and slim, and an entire cast of wild outrageous injuns, just a howlin’ and a whoopin’ it up, in the back seat of their horseless 53 pontiac

WHAT  WILL  THEY  THINK  OF  NEXT .  .  .  and best of all , all the kids also got to ride . . . all the way over to visit with sammy the one-eyed seal . . and before you knew it they were once again riding . . but this time , would you believe . . sea cows in lalalalafontaine . . the splashy activity areas that skirts  25 or 6 to 4 , the glass encased 3-D squash pong court . . overlooked by four raft observation lounges 6” to 7” below the deck . . so that we could , once again , get our perspective just right  . . . and of course the entire get up was subtended by mini fridges , books , cassettes , controls . . hey don’t touch that dial . .  and  of course all the holes . . holes right back into the kitchen , the rock ‘n roll museum , and the art and sculpture garden . . home to a cacophony of caretaker crickets , beetles , and butterflies . . the complete audio video encyclopedia of rock ‘n roll music and verses . . organized by , and for historians , into subject matter such as the weather , the water , chicken stories ,  time , space , and of course the classic standby “love” . . . with highly receptive spiders takin’ their little ones for a walk  through the mind stone museum . . past  slow motion  prehistoric sloths , and giant flipped out grass hoppers . . .  and there just in time to send you reelin’ right back home into  A  VARIABLE  TIME ‘N SPACE  ROOM  called  “ultra realism “ . . . a space in which giant screens are projected with the actual views of summer , winter, spring , and fall . . . connected to equally big windows looking upon the same fresh spring – you know the one that springs eternal – and turning turning  and turning  .  .  . til all horizons were perfectly synchronized from above . . . and with woodpeckers singing “ if i had a hammer “ and kookoo birds telling time “all over this world “

THE   $40,000  ROOM  .  .  .  and to top it all off there was up on the roof  . . a  roof that to date had been nothing more than barren asphalt  – in the same vain as picture windows  that used to overlook things called streets – which we redeemed with great haste as we , our plant , and inter-planetary friends danced with our  – you got it  – with our hands up to the sky

.   .   .  and with a new day dawning , we could see our asphalt sea begin to  crater ‘n crack  under those great colourful friendship rings   .  .   of trees  enough to call forests   .  .  air enough to see the sky  .  .  and water enough to create life

. . . all surrounding this 21’ octagonal raft – thanks to curved space – a  $25,000 stereo system – thanks pal hal . . . and to cap it all off , overlooked by an ivyed octagonal mushroom dome  – you know the kind of space a telescope could call home   –    for there was more to this than what meets the eye   – and also a pizza , for there were also phones  . . .  and in the end everyone had a friend . . . and music  .  .  .  “don’t you know i love you more than i can ever say “ . . . and . . . “ you know i’ll love you twice as much tomorrow “

. . . and little by little we began to turn it up  . . . til it was plain for all to see that the whole blessed thing actually began to take off and fly away . . . and as you can see . . if i was a teacher, i couldn’t wish for a better class  . . . and wake up , wake up shakey

. . . and in the morning as they awoke , i bet you can imagine all our little salts beginning to rub their tiny eyes  . . . and boy , were they ever in for a big surprise

COMING  SOON  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  tributaries  from  all  over  .  .  . 

TALES  FROM  A  DIRTY  OLD  MAN  PART  I

THIRTY  MINUTES  TO  SHAKE ,  MAKE ,  BREAK  ,  MAKE ,  BAKE ,  ‘ N  MAKE IT  TO  YOU  X  2 . . . and of course there were also phones . . . not to mention ying yang the thirty minute chinese pizza delivery man . . . says ying yang to van raft  . . i here . . you rang . . . but then he suddenly got this pang . . as he began to realize that he still had a second pizza for the others of the gang . . . for just up the stream , in a state we call a dream . . . and it might just as well have been . . . for by the time all was seen . . . GRIZZLY  THEATRE  PT-2 . . . and exactly what was it that gave ying yang his pang . . . and as for his part of the toil , the good doctor played with his beloved soil . . . and a fine mess it was indeed . . . and as he tried to effect the exchange , something happened that was really strange . . .  TWO  FREE  PIZZAS  . . . excuse me says van raft to the younger yang as he flew off to the room to wash his hand . . . and all the while the hands of the clock ran . . for it was in this time too that everyone was in such a big rush . . when we might have preferred a little more hush  .  .  .  .  .  .  but when he came out of the can , he found that it was really ying yang who had ran . . . d’you get the plan man

A  VERY SPECIAL  SURPRISE OR  TALES  FROM  A  LEAKY  BOAT  PART  9  :  THE  TRIP

what you should know about keele hauled , and to shield you from any further irresistible inferences , is that  ( a )  there will come a time when an increase in speed will compress the waves of a red light source til it turns green  . . .  but try tell that to the judge  –  hay , you’re not allowed to charge me twice for the same offence says van raft to van winkle , the winkin’ van , as friends and family still loved to call him  --  of the dizzy chick who charged him for invading her privacy  –  asked the lady if she was having a good time ( b )

LOST  AT  C  :  KEELE  HAULED  :  PT  -- 1

. . . and everyone was true to their word , except that what at first 21 appeared to be , was only 14 , when interpersonal distances were taken into account . . . count me in says the count . . . and so he , the captain , and the count began to turn up that great big pink ‘n  black polka dot wheel  .  .  .  7  .  .  .  6  .  .  .  5  .  .  .  4  .  .  .  3  .  .  .  2  .  .  .  1  .  .  .  WOW  .  .  .  and as promised all the little kids went for a ride  .  .  .  through the clouds we could sea ‘em shine , as they actually flew back in time  .  .  .  back  .  .  back  .  .  back     in    time  .  .  .  back past our dear old friend rip van winkle , who was just takin’ a leisurely nap under the old obo tree , in a past and  / or future life  –  hay what came first dreams van raft , the chicken or the egg  –  says van winkle to van raft disguised as an ant . . why the hay of course , silly . . the hay that comes from the fields . .  mmm . . the fields on a gentle brook called donald , that flows past delightful tomato plantations , loving wine presses , and how are you doin’ enio . . .  and right back into a high school named after a hairy mouse called george

. . . and as they sat there in their desks and flew past fortune and misfortune . . . and the time . . right on the time . . you got it the time was exactly . . SWITCH . . we’ll be back on friday . . SWITCH . . and that’s the journal entry for wednesday , june 4th , 1986 . . SWITCH . . precisely 8 : 59 on or about the morning of june 5th  –  get it straight will you   – the hospital for sick kids telethon is on Ch9 . . NO9 . . NO9 . . NO9 . . on saturday june 14 . . and then it follows that early the next morning should be sunny . . and a rather appropriate way in 86 to spend father’s day . . i should think , wouldn’t you say  –  that’s right , you should always say what you think , and write wat yu sa . . nice try . . but no bananas . . . hi there carl  .  .  OK  .  .  OK  .  . OK  .  .  A OK roger . . . or as they say in these parts one minute to nine

. . . let’s look in on ‘em then past the red light that suddenly appeared to mr. mueller , all sweaty in those grey flannels , blue blazer , and old school boy tie . . . that’s right mr. mueller had two choices                                                               

1)    follow the golden rule , and be late for school or

2)    sneak across the u know what , right then ‘n  there , and right in front of all the little salts , and various ‘n sundry other fools . . i’ll consider that a compliment . . thanks i needed that

. . . and the boat began to sweep to port . . and across the threshold , through the vestibule , and into the sacred halls  –  not to be confused with sacred cows  . .  mmm  –  of this pillared institution  –  funny how in this alma matter they built the pillars after they built the school  – where they teach you how not to do it  –  ‘cause if they were doin’ it , they wouldn’t be teachin’ it  –  thanks ed glanert  –  HA  HA  HA  –  send that boy down to the vice principal in charge of discipline , he’s havin’ too much fun , eh mr. cross -- hi there mike stelmach and bill kostik . . GO TEAM GO . . . not to mention joe meagher , the freckled twig , of the stone falcon and cosmic communicator fame  –  only to be freaked out once again by

        NO 3)  god save the queen . . . well that was that . . and so you had it . . and before you knew it , mr.mueller was once again confronted and confounded by another wooly mammoth of a puzzle

         NO 4)  he could now  . . 1 . .  stand there all at attention with bated breath or  . . 2 . .  whilst the kids in his class . . and quite rightly so . . tear the whole place apart

. . . or how about the one . . WOW . . dj catch those lake of bays through the mist  . . the one about when little jeff neufield  . .  A. K. A. the very reverend count reginald ralph rocky scruff connors the third of lichtenstein .  . the master of all voices , and comedian to boot .  .  dismissing the entire school in his role of principal on the  PA . . PA . . PA . . PAPA . . PA . . PA . . PAPA . . squeak . . oh shut up, squeeky

 

 

DJ  CATCH THE DRIFT

THE  DOUBLE  HEADER  .  .  .  and by now I bet you’re probably wondrin’ whoo was there . . . right . . . and so the game was on again . . . and ready or not , it was catch me if you can . . . and , oh , just who do we have here . . . for what at first an innocent piece of driftwood appeared to be , was in fact  YFAM  the freckled twig , and his cosmic communicator pals wee all washin’ thems elves , and numbered 33 , and through whose eyes we could actually see all our little salts sea- sawing , swashbucklin’ , and just a buzzin’ and a hummin’ away , as they finished their homework on the roots of the swingin’ old oboe tree

or maybe this clue will help

BETWEEN  THE  PIPES  .  PART  I I I

. . .  IM  . TGMP  IS  .  PART V  . .  EARTHBOUND  GARDENS

. . . in the affairs of men and mice it was lou . . that’s right it was lou who flew the entire zoo right past our dear friends behind that tricky old duck blind , and wright on back home to you  . . . yes you pal hal . . . and so by now we had a crew of 102 , give , take , or trade a  few

. . . let’s look in on ‘em then , through the mist that had begun to rise from the glades of their ancestral  home . . . a place that here to fore had been nothin’ more than arenas of war , misery , and ice . . . through the branches we could see the great gardener prophets clancy  ‘n  hal and their disciples patiently take their rightful places in the inspirational rebuilding process underway in the nooks , crannies , ‘n open spaces of our proverbial garden . . . between stations we could hear the rush of the carlton and the elation of the congregation , as the entire gang sang right along . . TURN . . TURN . . TURN . . there’s magic in the music , and the music’s  in me . . TURN

THE  DAWNING  OF  THE  AGE  OF  AQUARIUS

I’m . . PARTIO . . hay who said that . . TGMP . . it’s a bird . . it’s a plane . . it’s something in the air . . . SUNNYSIDE UP . . . and of course no way we’d leave you hangin’ there all tilted towards the sun , and lookin’ down at the sky . . . or as they say in these parts , suspended in the suspense of lookin’ for a place to happen , and not even knowin’ what it was

. . . and before you knew it . . that is if we can catch ’em . . SWITCH . . chances of flurries  20 . . 60 . . and 80%  dependin’ on your position in time ‘n space . . . and as our stellar golden curved space ship began to drift , shift , ‘n sift back ‘n forth in rhyme we could actually see our entire universe unfold right then ‘n there , and right through the eye of a heavenly springtime blizzard so divine . . . each fluffy flake a star appeared to be . . as it deflected past the electro-magnetic spectrum that surrounded our craft so wee left the stars , that sliver of a moon , and the northern lights , reflected through those fabulous , billowing , rainbow coloured , candy floss clouds far behind . . SWITCH . . our WAWA Warriors have just won the rubber match with the Winnipeg Chiefs of the Upper Canada division of the N.L.L in   Fredricton , New Brunswick , Boo Hoo . . SWITCH . . hay catch that giant goose . . and dj know that accordin’ to an old huron indian legend all his great , great , grand , and great grand fathers are buried in that spontaneous pile of glacial rubble called Giant’s Tomb Island by the natives

. . . and as we looked south past North Pine we could spy a topless , solitary Mr. Mueller lookin’  for a tan on his cross - country skis on the north shore of Beausoleil Island as he stumbled round about amongst the deer tracks . . that looked upon a cheerful little brook that flowed right though the granite bedrock . . . and down into a bay that King George VI must’ve taken a particular liking to . . . past dwarf birches , cedars , alders , and all the beautiful mossy little barney pine groves . . . that broke up the monotony of the silence of the vast expanse beyond

ONLY  IN  THE  QUIETEST  MOMENTS  . . .  and in no more than a matter of seconds as he skied up , and over a ridge of what  H  H  2  4  been nothing more than an impenetrable melee of scruffy , tenacious juniper and blueberry bushes                    . . . and on the other side lay Fairy Lake a vision too beautiful to be real. Mr. Mueller silently slipped over the lake                       barely scratching the surface of his dream come true . . . and as he came  round the corner he found that there was no corner . . . T I L T . . . Ha . . Ha . . Ha . . . hay , who was that  . .  why that was our darling little Goblin quipped our dear old friend Knowlton , the chief spokesman , and chimney sweep of the ring of elves and gremlins that frequented the banks of Goblin and Fairy Lakes

“ Far Out ” thought Mr. Mueller , who had completely forgotten the smaller of these two magical lakes , and upon whose surface he had skipped countless stones in the midst of enchanting mid-summer walks . . . and across whose whale back playing fields , surrounded by stands of wavin’ pines , oaks , and birches , that stretched from Honeymoon Grove to Chimney Bay , where he had had the fortune to grow

A Van Raft Christmas

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. . . did you say swimmin’ . . says wvRvw a two headed turtle to rvWvr this funny flyin’ sun ‘n sail fish, who in an earlier time had escorted ted , this gnarled little pine that had slipped off another shore , all the way back to windy ridge , mr. mueller’s ancestral island retreat , and a destination that the little fellow now likes to call his home

BECAUSE  HE  LIKES  THE  NAME .  .  .  or was that really Gene Gene , a frisky monacled count Baron Asphalt , Doctor Snuggles , Knobby and another Steven pretendin’ to be fishin’ for compliments from Chantal , when it was plain for all to see that it was really only his front man  Salidali the Eggman , and his sidekick Silly Sally , together with George Plimpton and RJ , a couple of old friend’s who’d had dropped in just for the partee . . . and makin’ a fine mess of themselves , as they gobbled up all the twisted clock-shaped fish ‘n finger pies  . . to the total dismay of RDR and RDD , and their soul cousin R2 D2 , the tin man too

. . . this flipped-out-finger-lickin’ insanity amused all the little Van Rafts and their nine newly - hatched baby duck pals  . . little  Danny, Jenny, Mikey , and Gayle . . all sitting in a weensy little circle with Andrea , Robbie , Monica , Solange . . and of course little Kimberly

. . . and makin’ secret little wishes . .  and havin’ so much fun . . . beside the trickle of a springtime stream . . that actually seemed to know exactly where to run

.  .  .  and just what  does furniture have  to  do  with  all  of  this  .  .  .


ACROSS  THE  MILKY  WAY  .  .  .  which reminds me of another tale says  WVR  to  RVW  who often carried on two or more conversations at one time , whilst watchin’ their precious tree brothers blowin’ paper numbers , all kinds of weather ‘n water systems , and a raft of radio and television connections around at the same time

GRIZZLY  THEATRE   Part  I I   TOO  .  .  .  BOO  BOO  WHOO  .  .  .  and as wvRvw , andre , aaron , levon , the two ronnies , deano david ‘n munzi , the leapfrog three , and ruby ralph cramden , norton , and wilbur , the carpet crawler four entered the grizzly theatre they peeked under this radiant white veined , pink ‘n grey granite rock to see just who might be there  . . . but when they got there they were shocked to hear this slouchy grouch yell out . . . oh no , not the grouch   . . the grouch who stole christmas  . . . that’s  right . . get out . . get out   . . get out . . whoever you are . . . and of course we yelled back  . . come out . . come out . . come out . . wherever you are . . . and of course by now it wasn’t even a rock . . not even a rock . . . of course not silly . . not even a rock  . . . for what at first a rock appeared to be was really a lid . . a lid you say . . that’s right the legendary lid of the grouch’s beloved garbage pail . . . and by now it wasn’t even the grouch  .  .  SWITCH  .  .  G   L   O   R   I   A  .  . SWITCH  .  . for what at first the grouch appeared to be was really a swany she . . . and who was that she that was so shy . . . ya , who was that she , who was the first to kiss  . . . and not even a garbage can to boot  . . . why, that was really goldilocks , the grouch and lou’s magic lantern , and three baby grizzly bears . . . for what at first a kiss appeared to be . . . and what at first a king appeared to be was luckily only a jack . . a  jack you say . . right on a jack . . a jack of hearts of course , silly . . . and of course before all was said and done , everything and everyone got married . . which was really far out  . . and more than even that . .  lots of fun

INTERMISSION  WITH  A  SMILE . . . and all the while rip van winkle , wolf van raft , and papa smurf , all jazzy in his royal blue velvet bowtie played    INVISIBLE  TOUCHES    a subliminal 3D time , space , ‘n mind game with confusin’ confucious , abstract albert , ‘n absurd alfred  e . . . and of course the joke was on twiddlee dum and twiddlee dee . . for all our little van rafts to see

 . . . and all our little salts had mikes of all sorts . . . why we had cordless mikes ‘n wireless hypes , and even intercontinental , interplanetary , and interstellar types . . . and all these marvellous space age toys , that to us were were nothin’ more than souvenirs and ploys , were in fact the subjects we contemplated over a dish of . . you got it . . macaroni with the boys

. . . for what at first a simple matter of phoning , playing , kibitzin’ , singing , writing , concentrating , and praying with our media pals appeared to be , was in fact really a series of  gyratin’  ,  rotatin’ , concentric circles , and not just a one way street . . . hay who said that

. . . and as the time went by we began to fly . . and then to tape . . to relate . . with friends from the past . . . til at last . . . we could actually be with all of our dear old pals who had long since passed . . . and then of course , the future was also theirs to see . . . and the rivers flowed as we laughed and cried  . . . and in the tree by a brook a mocking bird sighed