Pages

Friday, September 24, 2010

Lana’s midnight shadow factor

*

Although I’ve long been infatuated with Lana, something about her had been bothering me; ever since the 4th of July when she and I explored the subterranean tunnels that web beneath Hailey’s Main Street. Throughout the festive holiday she kept pressing me to disclose the secret location of the second silver-laden pantechnivan. Then, right before we celebrated the fireworks, I noticed Lana leafing through my personal journal in the library. That wouldn’t get her very far though, because I’ve written most of my notes in cryptic code. The thing that niggled at me the most was that when Lana and I embraced close on the Mint’s deck during the parade highlights, I noticed that she didn’t cast a shadow.

*

By having no shadow, I mean that as we hugged, I only saw one small silhouette on the north ground between the two of us. Granted the parade ends at the same time the sun is near zenith, but still; right when I noticed this strangeness, Lana made an excuse to dash inside The Mint, where the design of the lively dance hall makes it difficult to distinguish individual shadows. That evening too, as we walked out Quigley, it was too dark to say for sure, but every time a skyrocket went off, I noticed the same fleeting phenomena. Thinking back on it now, Lana chose a path, so we wouldn’t walk past any mercury vapor streetlamps. She seemed utterly determined to not reveal anything to me about her darkness.

*

What was I to make of this? Actually I hadn’t thought much about it since the holiday, and even less recently, now that sweet Amy had become a larger part of my life. Still though, there was something irresistible about Lana, and if she wasn’t way down in L.A., I would probably be more obsessed with her. Meanwhile, Amy graciously accepted the sage pendulum I had purchased from Holli Jewelers. After determining which way indicated ‘yes’ for her, Amy made it swing in a positive direction over dozens of queries. Finally, I asked her to focus on something to make the pendulum sway another way, and when she did, I sensed that she was asking the universe about Lana.

*

Since it was a school night, and I still needed to conduct some tests on the antenna in my home lab, Amy and I parted ways at McClain’s. After a few hours in the lab, I felt as though I was making some progress on the underground project, when suddenly both cockatiels started squawking up a storm. I laid down my earphones and heard a squeak at the front door. When I tried to flip the porch light on, it was burned out. By the light of the waning moon, I saw an unfamiliar car in my driveway – an expensive looking pink Porsche with shaded windows. To show I was unafraid, I thrust open the front door with great force and knocked the perpetrator to the end of the porch and head over heels into the birdbath. Lo and behold, it was Lana! And she was dressed to the tees there to surprise me. Now all soaked, I tried to yank her out of the birdbath, but it was unstable, and when I grabbed her wrist, we both came crashing down onto my obsidian mirror sundial. Lana said, “You’re all wet, Max Rudolph and about as clumsy as Maxwell Smart!” The water was warm in the nice evening as we lay together, catching our breaths with the cockatiels cooing in the background. It was amazing how fast my old feelings started rushing back again in Lana’s alluring presence, and suddenly I suspended my earlier criticisms, making myself blind to those silly questions about her elusive shadow.

*

About the author: Jim Banholzer once visited the Enola Gay warplane at the Smithsonian Institution, where he noticed that the lighting of the museum was such that no shadow was cast beneath the Bombay doors from where our first nuclear bomb exited.

No comments: