Washington Horror Blog

SEMI-FICTIONAL CHRONICLE of the EVIL THAT INFECTS WASHINGTON, D.C. To read Prologue and Character Guide, please see www.washingtonhorrorblog.com, updated 6/6//2017. Follow Washington Water Woman on Twitter @HorrorDC ....

Sunday, September 19, 2010

What do you mean?

"What do you mean she put her finger in a pencil sharpener?" Dr. Khalid Mohammad asked while bending over to examine a bloody rag wrapped around the pinkie of Bridezilla.

"It's for sharpening eye pencils," Bridezilla said with a reproving glance at her erstwhile boyfriend. "I needed to clean out the fawn brown so I could use the raisin quartz. Nothing else fits in there except my pinkie!"

"You should have used a Q-Tip," her erstwhile boyfriend said for the tenth time since he had picked her up and driven her across the bridge to George Washington University Hospital.

"I didn't know it was that sharp!" she retorted for the tenth time. It was their first fight--he had never said a cross word to her before, but she could see genuine concern in his eyes...and she liked it. Dr. Mohammad told Consuela Arroyo the wound needed stitches, and the amazed nurse began preparation.

"What do you mean I have ovaries?!" said former Senator Evermore Breadman, on the other side of the hospital.

"You have ovaries," repeated the doctor who had just examined the MRI ordered after Breadman's last colonoscopy. "Some people have both male and female sex organs--it's more common than you would think."

"I don't have ovaries!" hollered Breadman, starting to turn purple. "You made a mistake!"

"Senator, please! It's no big deal. We discover this about once a month. It's not like you have a uterus."

"Well, I should think not!" hollered Breadman.

"Really, Senator, you must calm down. I think you better lie down and let me take your blood pressure." Usually it was the retired Marines and professional athletes that flipped out over this news--the politicians usually got over it faster.

"It's Lynnette Wong--she's been sabotaging me with her herbs!"

"No, Senator--you were born this way, I can assure you."

A few miles away, the Heurich Society was also having a bad day. "What do you mean that's the end of Operation Fenty?" asked the member who lived in Reston and paid no attention to city politics in Washington.

"He lost the Democratic primary," replied Henry Samuelson, who had spent three hours to cast his own special ballot against Fenty at one of the early voting stations, and was convinced that Mayor Fenty himself was somehow responsible for the cascade of problems that had caused it to take that long. "He can't win as an independent--he's made too many enemies."

"Who will go to Dubai for us?"

"Not him," replied Samuelson, who had always thought Operation Fenty was a disappointment.

"We might still be able to use Fenty," countered the Chair of the Heurich Society. "He will need a job."

"He can't be controlled!" replied Samuelson angrily. "He always has his own agenda."

"Men who need jobs will take the agenda proffered," countered the Chair. Down the hall, the butler plunging the toilet and swearing in Chinese would have nodded in agreement had he been at his normal listening post.

"What do you mean your email account was hijacked?" Charles Wilkinson Montgomery asked his son Charles Wu, who was typing furiously at the keyboard and swearing in Chinese while his father tried to repair a desk lamp in his apartment in upper Northwest. Wu was already finding it difficult to get his spy work done with his long missing father and unknown brother temporarily living in a neighboring apartment building, but this week had been particularly trying--suddenly everything was breaking, and his father insisted on trying to repair things instead of letting Wu go buy new ones. First it was the broken shoe heel, then the cracked drying rack, then the coat hook screws--now the lamp. "Somebody got into my email account through the Internet," replied Wu, who was scrupulously circumspect in all his email postings but, nonetheless, was aghast that his exceedingly complicated password [which he changed once a month] had somehow been breached. (In a couple hours, Henry Samuelson would return home from the Heurich Society meeting and find out that the computer program he had been running for two years to try to crack Wu's email password had finally done it--but the email folders would be emptied out and the password reclaimed by the time Samuelson realized it.) Wu's father, who rarely used email for anything more than trading bird-sighting stories or posting updates on the health of his other son, Phillip Montgomery, didn't see why it was such a big deal. He reconnected the wire in the desk lamp and plugged it back in, failing to notice the tiny spark of electricity jumping in the wall socket.

"What do you mean you have no driver's license?" Congressman Herrmark asked his legislative aide over the phone. Ann Bishis was sitting in the waiting area of the CVS pharmacist on Capitol Hill, cringing as she tried to explain to her boss that they would not let her pick up Sudafed for him without a driver's license. ("It's a semi-controlled substance--" she began.) "I know that!" he hollered. "What do you men you have no driver's license?" She told him her wallet was pickpocketed at Soho, and then she was moving, so she didn't report it stolen but simply mailed in a request for a changed-address driver's license, and three weeks had gone by, and she still didn't have it. "Why didn't you go in person?!" he bellowed, as she moved the cellphone further from her ear. ("I didn't want to take time off from work--" she began.) "I DON'T CARE! YOU'RE FIRED!" The little old lady waiting for her blood pressure medicine could hear that even without her hearing aid, and patted Bishis tenderly on the knee. The Congressman had actually fired and re-hired four people in the past two months, but the Chief of Staff had told Bishis this was quite common in election years. Bishis put down the phone and stared blankly at the cold and flu season display in front of her. The little old lady stood up, pulled down a tissue box, ripped it open, and offered it to Bishis, whose eyes were dry.

Back at the G.W. emergency room, Dr. Mohammad was examining another bloody bandage. "What do you mean he landed in the flower pot?" There was a piece of pottery shard sticking out of the man's forehead, and Dr. Mohammad regarded the man's wife critically, wondering if she had clocked him with the pot herself.

"I don't know!" she exclaimed. "He knew it was my favorite pot, and he tripped and fell right into it." She was shaking her head in annoyance. "He didn't even want to come to the hospital!" she added. "He's always bleeding somewhere, he says, because of the ibuprofen," she concluded. She folded her arms across her chest and shook her head in annoyance again--though Dr. Mohammad was uncertain at this point if she was annoyed with the ibuprofen or her husband. The doctor told nurse Arroyo to prepare again for putting in stitches.

"What do you mean he cut his hand on a filing cabinet?" asked the emergency room intake nurse to the next man that approached her, who had his arm around another new patient. (The injuries were beginning to seem comical to the intake nurse, who was accustomed to seeing a parade of knife and gunshot wounds on the weekend shifts.)

"I don't know!" exclaimed Charles Wu. "He was working on a sticky drawer! I told him not to bother with it!"

Back at Wu's apartment, the spark in the electrical outlet had caught the drywall on fire. Then the fire (and smoke) had quickly spread to the neighboring apartment, where an alarmed accountant from KPMG had ran out into the hallway and dialed 911 from his cellphone. By the time Wu would return three hours later to the gaping hole in the wall and smoke-damaged debris, the firemen would already be gone...and Wu would decide that perhaps he did love his father but it was time for the man to return to England.

Out in the river, Ardua of the Potomac was pleased with her new strategy of tormenting people through multiple tiny strikes, rather than expending her energy on large-scale operations. Humans are so easily distracted, she thought, as she reached up to the 14th Street Bridge and punctured another tire. Nearby, the pink dolphins were not amused.

Washington Water Woman will be heading out the West Coast later this week, but expects to return to blogging about Washington in two weeks....

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Chaos Theory

Washington Water Woman would like to explain to you why her life has been too chaotic to post lately, but she will have to wait until the chaos subsides.

In the meantime, she is happy to recommend www.planetwashington.com for its own brand of irreverent analysis of the chaos that is Washington, D.C.

Monday, September 06, 2010

Bull Sh**

Golden Fawn Vazquez and Marcos Vazquez were picnicking on Roosevelt Island. For once, Marcos had not offered to work a Labor Day shift for the Coast Guard and was letting the single people do it (as he used to). Marcos would have preferred spending some time working on condo repairs and then hiking in the National Arboretum, but Golden Fawn loved being near the water and relished the rare times they spent boating together. The problem was, Ardua of the Potomac was still out there, so, even though Golden Fawn was enjoying the weather and the water and the birds (brown pelicans?!), she also wanted to spend some time invoking spirits to fight the demon in the river. "Bull Shaman," she called out, trying a new one, "cleanse the waters of your land and rid us of this evil spirit!" Deep in the river, Ardua groaned at the stabbing pain and dug into the thick silt.

"Bull sharks!" screamed Dubious McGinty, shaking his fist at the Potomac River from his perch in the drawbridge watch tower. (He was referring to the pair of 8-foot killer sharks fished out of the Potomac last week. "I know you brought them here, just like you brought the damned snake heads! How many more are out there?" he screamed at Ardua. Then he felt her grimacing, and for a moment thought his screaming had actually upset her, but he quickly saw the puff of smoke from Roosevelt Island and realized Golden Fawn was out there again. "Ha! Bull sharks?! You're getting desperate, old girl!"

Several miles to the east, Sebastian L'Arche was eyeing an unusual looking dog at Eastern Market. "Bull shepherd?" he asked the bespectacled young man walking it.

"Yeah!" the man replied. "Most people can't figure that out! Her mother was a bulldog, and her father was a German shepherd. she usually barks at strangers, but she likes you!"

The dog whisperer nodded and knelt down to whisper in the bull shepherd's ear, and the dog responded with a whimper and a face lick. "She wants to run free every now and then--you really need to take her to a dog park where you can unleash her."

"Ummm, OK," the doubtful dog owner said, then pulled his dog away from the unsolicited adviser and walked over to where a crowd was forming around Mayor Adrian Fenty--who had just pulled up on his bicycle wearing black cycling shorts and a t-shirt that said "MAYOR". Fenty asked for people to vote for him in the primary, which quickly led to a shouting match between Fenty supporters and Fenty opponents. Results are non-negotiable! (Cronyism!) School tests are up! (Your attorney general is a joke!) Violent crime is down! (Who paid for your trip to Abu Dhabi?) New parks and swimming pools! (Given any contracts to your fraternity brothers lately?) D.C. is greener! (Fenty raided the Anacostia clean-up fund and the Sustainable Energy Utility!) L'Arche walked away, disappointed on many levels.

Several miles to the west, Chloe Cleavage was also disappointed on many levels. First of all, when her cousin Chloris Cleavage had announced she was coming to town, Chloe thought this would mean a lot of partying at trendy clubs with the movie star, but her last film ("Sorority Kickboxer") had not done as well as expected, and nobody seemed to recognize her the way they used to after her topless scene in "Midnight Mini-Golf". Plus, Chloris kept saying she needed to go to bed early to avoid getting dark circles under her eyes! Yesterday they had spent six hours doing a photo shoot at the Brewmaster's Castle [much to the consternation of the Heurich Society], and today Chloe was stuck watching Chloris do today's photo shoot at Hillwood Mansion. The photographers were all gay, the caterers were all gay, the agent and publicist were women, and Chloe was running out of people to email on her Blackberry. She had tried to get Calico Johnson to come hang out with them, but he had told her he was going out of town for Labor Day--without telling her where! (She just knew he was with some other woman.) "You are 26?" asked today's photographer (for "Hollywood's Hottest Hooters" magazine). "You do not look a day over 21!"

"Bull sheeeeeet!" cried out Chloris, in her exaggerated version of an East L.A. chicano accent--only one of several new habits that annoyed Chloe to no end. Then Chloris tossed her hair back and spun into the fan breeze dramatically. Chloe lay down on an elegantly upholstered fainting couch and stared at the exquisite ceiling design wondering what she had done to deserve this, while Chloris shook her head at Chloe, convinced that law school had turned her into a Blackberry-addicted zombie who was incapable of having fun anymore.

A few miles to the south, the ghost of Robert McNamara was suffering a psychological and spiritual relapse. "Bull shit!" cried out Didymus to his therapist, Ermann Esse. "End of combat in Iraq?! I don't think so! Iraq is going to Hell in a handbasket!"

"Well," replied Dr. Esse, "didn't they say that about Vietnam? And now Vietnam is a stable trading partner with the United States."

Didymus stared gape-mouthed at Dr. Esse. "Are you serious?! You cannot be serious!! What is Iraq gonna trade with us? All they've got is sand and improvised explosive devices!"

"Well," answered Dr. Esse, "didn't people think that Vietnam was just jungles and landmines? You need to have some faith in the resilience of human nature."

Didymus had faith in nothing, least of all the resilience of human nature. "Sometimes nations just fall apart, Doc--you know that, right? Roman Empire, Anasazi, Mayans, Easter Island. A quarter million dead or wounded in Iraq, and we've got nothing to show for it."

Now Dr. Esse wasn't sure if Didymus was suggesting that Iraq was falling apart or the United States. "How does that make you feel, Didymus?" (This was what Dr. Esse asked when stalling for time to collect his thoughts.) Didymus rolled off the couch and started banging his spectral forehead on the floor.

Over in the Potomac, Ardua smelled political winds of change wafting towards her and contemplated them thoughtfully.