Little fantasy friends

Sometimes, out of the blue, they make me slam on the brakes, pull off the side of the road and say, "C'mon, pay attention to us." At other times they bounce on my head and shout while I'm asleep, and wake me and make me turn on the light. They say, "C'mon, pay attention to us."

Usually -- and it doesn't matter where, from showering to dining to banking -- they poke me, push me, and badger me relentlessly in order to prevent me from having too much rest. I am necessary to them, and not the other way around. After all, they reason, my time is their time, and they all know I need only the stubbiest of pencils and the most dogeared piece of paper to keep up with them; and sometimes the luxury of a typewriter eases them quickly from one place to another while they speak and argue. But they don't care what I use as long as I'm doing what they want met to do.

It is the kid, Buzzy, who leads the harassment. Sometimes he comes on a toddler, a think, tough little kid daring to do anything without fear, and at other times he is a lanky, rangy, deer-like boy/man with a secret knowledge of some part of the world which he is saving to spring at just the right time to make everything fall into place, to heal something, anything.

The name, Buzzy; fascinates me because it means and sounds like movement, action, something thrust into motion with a kind of hands-on-the-hips defiance. Buzzy. The kid can run fast, he can break something and repair it, he can take a flower and name the parts, he can tell you all the labor parties in Sweden, he can talk to a girl and not be a fool. Buzzy. He is destined for a life of grand accomplishment over adversity; he is the great kid of all kids, neither a super athlete nor any stereotype, but living and breathing somewhere in between because it is nearest reality, rearest to the concept of human warmth and concern that I, the creator of Buzzy, saw in Buzzy, who in turn, is the boy/man leading the characters in the life they must have.

Buzzy. Where did you come from? Where are you going? Where are you leading all the others? Chandler Corona, for instance, the ugly, dark eyed motorcycle rider with the greasy hair who thundered into the living room on a Sunday afternoon and just sat there, revving his machine, staring at me as if to say, Okay man, deal with me now. I'm here and I'm waiting.

Chandler has deep blue and red tattoos on his arms. He wears a white T-shirt gray with life and sweat, and a leather vest with a huge vulture painted on the back. His belt is three inches thick; his boots are a dusty black and thick as tires. And he oozes a kind of brittle pretense, a kind of adolescent competitiveness which says, Hey, man, you ought to see my record. You ought to be impressed with how evil I've been. But Buzzy knows, he knows that Chandler is an ex-con who is a very tired ex-con who roared into the living room because he is looking for something better, and even though he doesn't know how (or couldn't or wouldn't say it), he wants to change, to be free not only from evil, but from the smell and look and feel of evil as well. I sit and watch them, because if they came out of my brain, I've got to know them.

Buzzy knows enough to be patient with Chandler's symbols, and at the same time to call his bluff, to load bullets in the chambers of the funny gun and shoot them at Chandler to pierce the shell with laughter, so that he and Chandler will laugh their way toward a distant healing with the greatest of patience on both sides.

These are the people that follow me with rage and impatience. But it is Buzzy who leads the pack, the unshakable child riding at the point, the smallest leader with the greatest skill.

Buzzy. Where did you come from? Where are you going? Where are you leading all of the others?

I don't remember a time in my life when I've been without Buzzy.

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