Click here to read this story from the beginning. Otherwise, let’s get this thing across the goal line…
Now that we’ve had the “clean and squeaky” tour of the city, with all the pretty lights and charming houses, it’s time to peel back the layers and find out what’s really going on in Bonnywood Village, exposing some of the secrets and lies surrounding the citizenry. I won’t tell everything, of course. I’ve got to hold back the juiciest stuff for the inevitable sequel.
And here we go. Please note that the pictures in this post were taken by me using my non-professional camera. Since I don’t have the skills or the equipment that my sister has, I had to compensate for my amateur status by looking for interesting angles that hopefully tell a story while at the same time distract you from the fact that I suck at taking pictures.
We’ll start in the rural part of town. Keep in mind that you can click on any picture for the full-blown version in case you desire to carefully study the depravity contained within…
Isn’t this cute? We’re looking at the Berrywood School, where all the little farm boys and farm girls go to get their learnin’. Think “Little House on the Prairie” except they have running water and electricity, and Nellie Oleson has long since moved on to the Bitchy Cloud in the Sky.
The charm of this scene diminishes once you realize what’s about to happen. You see, the matronly woman on the left, the schoolmarm for Berrywood, is just returning from a private prayer consultation with the local minister. (You can see her personal house of worship just behind her.) Five seconds after this shot was taken, she walked into Berrywood to find underage Johnny Banger and Marissa Slutworth racing about the room, completely naked and sweating far more than is required when one is attending school.
Completely aghast, the schoolmarm then ordered the youngsters to locate and resume wearing their clothing. Both of the naughty teens quickly did so, while at the same time protesting that this was not what it seemed, as they were merely re-enacting the Temptation in the Garden scene with Adam and Eve. And we all know that they didn’t wear clothes back then, so they were simply aiming for realism to fully understand the emotional angst of that moment. (We’ll ignore the fact that no apples were found on the premises, making their story a bit suspicious.)
The schoolmarm did not buy this at all. She dismissed the children and sent them home in disgrace. She knew they were lying. After all, she had just been doing the same “scholarly research” with Father Hardwood at the church next door. (No apples were found over there, either.)
Next, we travel to one of the downtown streets. There are three reasons for reporting on this particular scene.
The first point is that something illicit has apparently happened in one of the buildings on the left side of the street. We have a police officer investigating a crime, so something unfortunate has obviously taken place, despite the rather casual manner of the officer. Why has he not drawn his gun? Why does he look rather irritated and defensive, as if he’d rather be watching “Desperate Housewives”? Regardless, the curious crowd of onlookers on the right side of the street confirms that evil lives among us. Any time you have villagers gathering collectively and pointing their fingers, there simply must be malfeasance of some kind occurring.
Second, we have the initial appearance of one Tiffany Delacroix. She’s the blond child on the left, rudely crossing in front of a manger scene. Who in their right mind would try to upstage the Baby Jesus? Tiffany would, with her curly golden locks and her “it’s all about me” manner of walking. Tiffany appears multiple times in this travelogue, madly racing to every part of town where I shoved my camera, vying for attention with psychotic need.
Thirdly, and most quizzically, why is everybody in this scene, even the children, much larger than the vehicle parked in the middle of the road? None of them could possibly fit inside. What’s going on here? What lies are we being told by our elected officials? This is what happens when decent people don’t take the time to vote.
This is Hubert, and his tale is a tragic one. You see, he had fallen in love with a wonderful young woman that he met on “Lustbuddies.com”, one of those social websites where people are looking for love in all the wrong places. Happily, he had been corresponding for several months with the object of his affection, Drusilla, and they had truly grown very fond of each other without ever having actually met.
Sadly, Hubert is a very stupid man. Drusilla had finally decided it was time for them to meet. (With said meeting taking place in a public setting, of course, because you should always be cautious whenever you decide to cast aside your carefully-manipulated user profile and actually reveal your true self.) She asked him to meet up with her at the mailbox on the main square, near the gazebos.
Stupid Hubert misunderstood this directive, and on the night of their planned meeting he went looking for the mailbox near the gazelles rather than the gazebos. (Who in the hell has gazelles on the village square? Did I mention that Hubert drew the short straw at a critical developmental stage in his life?) Unable to find said animals, dimwitted Hubert marched home forlornly, walking right past the intended mailbox on the square and, if you look to the far right, he marched past Drusilla herself in her pretty ball gown. They would never meet.
Which is a good thing, really. We have enough stupid people in the world as it is. We certainly don’t need stupid offspring confused about structures and animals.
Okay, with this shot, I had originally intended to capture the cute little family tying a Christmas tree on top of their car, as well as the lovely skyline of housing in the background. But what happens? That rude Tiffany child raced into the scene, directly in front of the car where family bonding had been scheduled. No one asked her to do this, she just did, because she has boundary issues and was not raised properly.
This is a snap of “Somerset Lanes”, a bowling alley in the seedier part of town. I risked personal injury in order to take this shot, because I felt it was my duty to report on the wickedness that has invaded some of the metropolis. There are multiple signs of sin and hooliganism surrounding this establishment.
First, we have an overabundance of signage on the front of the building. There are at least five signs on the right side alone. This can only mean one thing: drugs are sold on the premises. This does not lead to a healthy neighborhood.
Then we have the fact that the tree on the right is highlighted with gaudy neon spotlights. This is quite shameful, and is a clear indication that hookers are available at reasonable rates. If you have any relatives with commitment issues, you should be very suspicious if they announce that they are headed to Somerset Lanes for “some bowling with the buddies.” They are lying.
Finally, on the far left, we have what appears to be an outhouse that has fallen on the building. Why does this place have an outhouse? And why has it fallen over? Actually, we probably don’t want to know the answers to these questions, and we should probably keep walking, tightening our coat around us against the looseness of the morals on this depraved avenue.
I don’t even have to add a story to this shot.
The picture speaks for itself.
The sadness on Mr. Potter’s face, the immense snow drift about to consume the town, the alarming power surge in the restaurant in the background, the ugly item Mr. Potter is clutching. The pathos is overwhelming. Mr. Potter needs to move to a different neighborhood, preferably one with a lenient pharmacy on the corner.
And we have yet another shot of the evil Tiffany trying to take center stage.
I was originally trying to capture the sad tale of Mr. Gruntworthy, the man standing in between the two left gazebos. Word about town is that he was hoping to reunite with his long-lost daughter in this very square where, years ago, the two of them shared happy times before she became a bitter revolutionary that refused to wear deodorant or acknowledge familial ties.
Tiffany heard of this possible encounter, and raced to the square before I could capture the man in his lonely sadness. She’s obviously not his daughter, but she’s running towards him as if they were, fully aware that cameras are flashing.
And even though I despise the spotlight-hogging tyke, I do have to give her credit for agility. If you study carefully, you’ll see that she somehow managed, in the time span of one snapshot, to play the role of loving returning daughter (lower center of the square) and tag-along friend/sister that could also be returning to Poppa or offering assistance to people dealing with the transport of a Christmas tree (lower right of the square), with her golden locks and annoying beanie cap.
This is Jack’s Diner, which you can probably discern based on the sign on top of the building saying “Jack’s Diner”. This is one of those places where rich people go when they think they are being all street and stuff.
We have four primary players that you can see in the windows.
Let me break it down for you. Left to right, we have Abigail Powers, Rudy Powers, Jed Beavers and Crystal Beavers. Abigail has just announced to her husband that she will no longer have sex with him because she had a vision while watching a servant clean the lint trap on the dryer, and the Lord told her that sex was no longer in fashion.
Rudy isn’t really bothered by this pronouncement, because he’s secretly banging Jed and welcomes the free time for more banging. Jed, sitting a bit stiffly because he plays catcher for Rudy, is listening to Crystal announce that SHE is banging the short-order cook at Jack’s. Just to the immediate right of Crystal is said short-order cook, apparently in the process of banging someone else.
I didn’t promise you a rose garden, folks. I just call it as I see it…
And here’s our parting shot. (I had to use a flash so you could get all of the detail, an intrusion that sucks some out the charming ambiance the other images have. I wouldn’t have had to do this if the housing participants in this section had agreed to light up all at the same time, but they refused to do so, just like tipsy family members who can’t sit still for two seconds so you can take a decent holiday group photo.)
Yes indeed, we have Santa, drunk off his ass, staggering out of a Victorian Pub. (I’m not making this up, look at the sign on the building. I would never lie to you or exaggerate in any way.) I have no idea where the reindeer might be, or for that matter, the undelivered presents. Chances are there will be some dissatisfied children contacting their social workers and/or lawyers in the morning. Then again, aren’t they always doing that?
And with such, our journey ends, not because there isn’t anything else to see, but mainly due to my growing restlessness after cranking out seven episodes of this morality tale and it’s time for me to find other things to desecrate.
I hope you enjoyed your time in the Village of the Damned. Perhaps you find our little metropolis rather charming, with its glittery fakeness and disproportionately tall citizens. If so, why not hop on the subway back into the city square and seek out “Velma’s Real Estate Boutique and Bait Shack”? Just ask anyone for directions, they all know where it is. Perhaps Velma will have a nice bungalow for you that is ready to move in, complete with its own giant bulb shoved through the back wall and nice appliances that don’t really open but they sure are shiny and pretty.
Hope to see you on next year’s tour!
And thanks for the milk and cookies, that was really sweet of you…
Originally published in “The Sound and the Fury” on 01/06/10 and “Bonnywood Manor” on 01/04/16. Minimal changes made, mostly to avoid harsh words being exchanged at the next Town Council meeting. And if the photo of Mr. Potter seems familiar, yes, I have used that same shot multiple times for other Christmas stories over the years. He gives me a sense of comfort in an odd way…