Yes well it is somewhat of my pleasure to reach out to your eyes and hearts again. This time its my first writing i’m doin as a official 1900HOTDOG colummist which Office and Calling has provisioned me with not only a really pretty neat art portrait but also both civic authority and financial support for expanding my research capapilities. For Example i am no more limited to the county bookmobile for materials of learning: i was able to re-enter the city libary which i was disallowed from due to a unfortunate late-fee situation which got out of hand when it took me a real long time to find the copy of Jonathan Livingston Seagull I checked out in ‘87. And even after i found it in the barn in a old moonboot (which i stopped wearing due to stepping in dog mess in it) i was too ashamed to go back to return ANY of the books i had out (and lets just say there were alot of them) until now with the backing of your patreon contributions, thanks to you everyone who’re reading this! As they say in the South Lands “Muchos Pocos Hacen Un Macho”
(Expense receipt attached: $748.72 library late fee, note: “ajusted for claimin financial hard ships and emotional upsets.”)
So, with a clear conscious and after crying a little bit at the circalation desk, I re-entered the libary of my youth and it had changed! I asked where was the card catalog and they showed me a computer and now they have comic books in their and also movies which i gravitationed towards right away (being as we all know i am a bit of a film buff). There were so many things to look at for a Learning Day but due to i’m still on libary probation, i am limited to one item at a time for now, which I felt like I must choose very wisely and get a item that would maximize a educational experience. So: in kind of a libary life hack i found a VHS triple-feature with THREE films on it which seemed like could provide just so much Learnin probably and so this is what i proudly took to the self-checkout (which is a ‘nother new thing at the libary):
So I went home and started with The Bridge and repositioned my factory outlet La-Z-Boy in the center of the living room for optimous viewing angle and respectfully asked LaRene and Trayton if they would play Angry Birds Battleship with headphones on and use our indoor voices and pushed Play and here we go:
Theres a password or something and it says Visual Transit Authority so I guess its some sort of PSA and it starts off pretty cute theres a Kind Dad:
And A Boy he kinda looks like me when i was little!
And they are having a wholesome day like doing piggyback rides by corn:
And feed a calf what i imagine must be a orphan:
And plant there crops even though the boys pants keep falling down haha!
And take a river nap which that sounds pretty good to me:
But then the dad has to go to work and guess what his job is:
That is something else I never saw a bridge like that!
But there is a Problem:
The Bridge won’t close right and here comes the train so the dad has to run down real fast to do it manual with a lever he has to hold down but NOW guess what!
Here comes his little son to tell him its supper time or maybe the mom is gonna have a baby (i wasnt clear on that) so the father has a terrible choice to make, who does he save:
I will tell you at this point I was real stressed out, I expertly popped my chair lever to unrecline faster than i ever did before and was right on the edge of my seat and pretty much almost couldnt watch:
Yes that face is exactly how i felt, i looked at my sweet family tappin on their phones with their mouths kinda open and NO i would NEVER let a train run over them but then I thought about: but theres ALOT of people on a train! What would i choose!? I couldn’t tell you and i hope i never have to but heres what the dad did:
So you can imagine it took me some time to recollect my emotions and LaRene and Trayton were pretty confused about why i was holdin em both so tight, and they were saying stop we cant see our phones but i dont think they could tell i was just fightin back sobs.
Just fightin em back.
Researchin Reflections aka What Did We Learn?
So once I wasnt so upset i took a walk to walk the dog and to ponder upon what i had seen and what was it, the lesson that the Visual Transit Authority was trying to teach me? Maybe don’t walk on the tracks? Or: have a labor plan what doesnt depend on a little boy doin’ a Stand By Me to say the babys coming? I rewatched it (but not the end it was to painful) but was still confused, so I wondered if there was anything about the creators of the film that might hold a clue as to its meaning. So i paid real close attention to the opening credits and what I found there:
These names…these ‘ticular names…there was something about these names, something FAMILIAR but everytime my brain thought it found the Connection it scampered off away from me again. It was like a extra sticky booger on your finger, you flick and you flick and maybe you think you got it but then: there it is all stretched out on a whole differnt finger somehow and we all know the unpleasant truth of what Must Be Done in such circumstants: i must ingest this mind booger and envelope it and digest it and then excrete it as a new booger. But also as: Understandin.
But Anyway and Fortunately I have developed a dependful method for the seeking of wisdom beyond my own:
yes that is a camper i have converted into a Mindfulness Self-Compassion Meditation Sweat Lodge with the use of internal tarps and the thermal blankets they were giving away at the Church “make-a-bug-out-bag” Social. In this chamber of sasquastration i spected I’d find the answers what was alludin me.
So I gave a tender kiss to LaRene and Trayton and said i’ll be back in time for Wheel, and then I gathered the necessary supplies-
(Expense receipt attached: $48.63, 40-pack HotHands Hand Warmers, note: “sweat lodge heat source.”)
Sweat-proof proteen and carbohydrates-
(Expense receipt attached: $7.28, 12-pack Slim Jim Meat Sticks, “Savage” Size; 1 canister Pringles, “Ketchup” Flavored.)
(Expense receipt attached: $9.45, 12-pack Busch Beer, Non-Alcoholic, note: “for clarity of coignition.”)
I stepped into the Alaskan Telescopic Camper of Pure Awareness, real quick tore open a shitload of them handwarmers, took off my clothes, folded my arms and closed my eyes and just opened my mind to The Universe.
Well I must draw a veil of sacred privacy over most of what I beheld and understood anew there in the camper, but I am permitted to share a dramatic recreation of the vision what arrived to me as I returned to this physical realm, pretty damp too:
Those names, so familiar to me of course! It is because they are all strong Mormon surnames, good Utah stock, all of em!
(Yes I too look forward to the day when I can learn something without the Mormons showing up but today? This day isnt that day)
And then all the internet did was just pretty much confirm my personal revelation:
Thomas Christensen, if that IS your real name or are you Also Known As:
Anyhow so now I realized I had the rosacea stone to dis-cipher the short film The Bridge: I must view it through the lens of Latter-Day theologies and of course it is so OBVIOUS NOW! The father is The Father God Our Father In Heaven and the boy is His Son, Jesus “Savior” Christ The Messiah and just like God: the dad in the video had no choice but to kill His Only Beloved Son to save the rest of us, just riding so ignernt there on the train of life, cuz what else was He gonna do? Use His Magical God powers to ramp the train up to fly over the little boy? Or turn the boy into like a quantum spirit for a few minutes so the train would just pass through him? Or maybe just wedge the lever with His boot and then run like hell and form-tackle His sweet boy to safety!?
I don’t want to confuse the issue its just pretty much the movie version of John 3’ 16’’
Researchin Applying Our New Comperhension to A Different Case Ensample
So with this knowledge required now I figured I had learnt how to learn from this video cassette. So I sat down and reclined into TotalBodySupport™ position and hit unpause to watch the next film with a smile of confidence but also Beginners’ Mind.
(I’m going to skip the middle one, The Mouths of Babes one, cause its just sorta like “Mormon Kids Say The Darndest Things” but its honestly kinda charming: there’s a little girl who sings a song that is So Cute she forgets she’s supposed to be explaining about Satan. You can watch it if you want but there isn’t really a Plot Puzzle to disenravel so it is unqualified for this research.)
And here we go:
“No not THAT Pump!” I said out loud and then looked over to see if LaRene knew why that was funny, but i forgot she still has her headphones on and i don’t think she listens to the podcast anyway. But anyway let’s see who made this one:
Well well look who it is Thomas or is it TC or is it Tom? We know his game now.
So this one starts with a man in a old-timey car driving through the dessert and playing old-timey music and also I forgot at the beginning it says August 1947, so thats when it is.
And then of COURSE he runs out of gas and its just dessert therefore a dilemma:
And then he remembers his Wilderness Survival merit badge and what you should do in this situation:
And then honestly its just like 10 minutes of walking in the desert. TC didnt anybody teach you kill your darlings?
And then holy god thank christ FINALLY we arrive at a salvation town:
And what’s this? A rusty promise of relief for a man of ravinous thirst?
But can you guess what? The pump doesn’t work and no water comes out! Oh no i guess all is lost for a protagonist we all feel a connection with and care about what happens to him, but whats this again?
He finds a letter from a old-timey voice-over that asplains theres a bottle of water under a near by rock, pour EVERY DROP of it into the pump to prime it and then it will pump water. Yes use EVERY DROP to prime it, if you dont you will surely die and then fill it back up and leave it for the next guy.
So now there is another terrible choice to make maybe not as bad as: “Do i let a train run over my kid?” but still: pretty serious! Somebody might say to me: sissyneck you need to learn about Escalating Stakes but this is the order they were on the tape.
What does he choose!?
Oh it just cuts to him falling down dead. So…did he drink it? and then die anyway? or did the pump not work? or wha-
Ok there’s the bottle so he didnt leave it for the next guy but still again: did he just take it and drink it? but the desert was too big?? or did he prime the pump and drink alot??? and then fill the bottle with water like some kind of old-timey water bottle???? but he still got smited because he didnt leave it for a future Travelor or…?????
Oh wait theres a few more shots, maybe one of these will provide us with the subtle answer like the Inception fidget spinner:
A drop! A single drop.
Researchin Reflection #2 aka What Did We Learn (Reprise)
Not as Upsetting as the other one where a child is obiterated vis-ä-vis: a train, but this time I have the Power of Mormon Doctrine to solve a cinematic mystery. Ok THINK sissyneck THINK! So in this one God is…God is probably the water? And we should pour God back into God so as to not perish in the…Or wait I think Jesus said HE’S the water so then God is the pump or no wait i think its actually the HOLY SPIRIT that is the water, but God is still The Pump and then the man dead in the sand is…um…JESUS, yeah! Cause he died like the boy what was torn under the train wheels while his father watched just like Jesus, so in this one we learned that Jesus SHOULDNT have NOT put The Spirit back where he found it? Like maybe after He was done using It to make those pigs drown? And then i guess He wouldn’t of died?
Something ‘bout mysterious ways?
I Say These Things in the Name of Jesus Christ Amen.
(Expense receipt attached: $0.96 library late fee, note: “I forgot to get the tape back in time sorry about that im a idiot”)
(Expense receipt attached: $13.72 Maverik Bonfire Grill Jalapeno Bahama Mama (5), note: “i eat my feelins sometimes”)
9 replies on “Learning Day: The Bridge and the Pump 🌭”
I’d totally let a train of innocents die to save my son but I’m not a Mormon so ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
I have taken one Mister neck’s dedication to research to heart and attempted to ascertain the meaning behind that last short film that he spoke about and I believe that I have uncovered the answer to this mystery. All investigation indicates that this is something called The Parable of the Pump that Mormons appropriated from certain protestant communities that’s meant to teach how you have to put in some of what you have on hand maybe even if it seems like you can’t stand to part with it with the faith that you will receive more in return. That sounded awfully familiar to me so I did a bit more digging and it turns out that this is one of those stories that the big church fellas tell about prosperity gospel, which I remembered from a particularly entertaining episode of the John Oliver show wherein he talked about how you’re supposed to send a dollar to a man who wants to buy an airplane and you will become a very rich man in turn (I assume you get free airplane rides for life or something). Mister Oliver didn’t seem to approve of it very much so he did a joke where he and his wife asked people to send him some seed but I guess the joke was on him because a lot of people sent him actual seeds and also some semen, which seems to me like something the post office ought to have noticed when the packages started dripping but I am not a mail scientist. On the other hand he did get a big old mahogany hog out of the deal so maybe he was the real winner in the end.
This was a quality cover of the Sissyneck voice.
I read all sissyneck’s articles in Mr. Plinkett’s voice.
I like that. I hear him as a combo of Early Cuyler and Sheriff.
I absolutely read him as Chuck Tingle.
I very much appreciate the titties on that remote control, and if someone could tell it for me, that’d be great.
As a librarian who has done a stint in a pretty rural system, the intro got to me hard.
All hail sissyneck, our soft-talkin, homespun, ramblin man overlord.