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by OPOVV, ©2020

Image: Myriams-Fotos, Pixabay, License

(Jan. 24, 2020) — “Good evening, ladies and gentlemen, and welcome to another enjoyable evening with your Roving Reporter (RR) on ‘The Pulse of the Nation,’ a television show where if you hear it here you don’t have to hear it anywhere else. As you can see, we’re back with Professor Zorkophsky in his tricked-out office at the university to discuss – you guessed it – another bestseller that has the earmarks of becoming a screenplay and, possibly, another blockbuster from Hollywood. Welcome to the show, Professor.”

“Always glad to assist you hawking my latest. Now, Roving, as many times as you’ve been to my office, you should know by now to address me as ‘Zork.’ You see, it makes for a more pleasant atmosphere, don’t you think? I think so; surely I do. Now I want to show you my latest addition, if I may, and I won’t take a ‘no’ or a ‘maybe later’ for an answer. Is it a deal?”

“It’s a deal, Zork.”

“Thank you. Now, if you would – watch your step – follow me over to this door, I’ll show you my truly unique invention, guaranteed to promote good health and prosperity.”

“You’re kidding.”

“Yes, I am, but nevertheless it’s quite a neat toy. See, my very own electron microscope and look here. Put a finger – any finger, or even a toe, now there’s an idea – in this hole and look at the screen. See?”

“I see my finger on the screen; so what?”

“Ah! Just you wait. Now, see that dial next to your hand? Turn it slowly to the right and your finger gets larger. Now move it – that’s right – so only the very tip of your fingernail can be seen. More to the right; even more. Now turn up that dial all the way to the right and don’t move a muscle. See?”

“Why, that’s amazing – kind-of creepy – but rather interesting, anyway. I’m not moving but my fingernail is moving; I can see it growing. Wow, some toy.”

“Thank you; I enjoy it. And do you know what I’ve learned? I learned that each fingernail grows at its own rate; individual fingernails, same hand, grow at different rates. I’m writing a medical textbook on the subject, with time-lapse photography. What do you think?”

“I’m speechless; yet another bestseller for sure. Now, about your new book, ‘Sessions’; what’s it all about?”

“As you know I treat many of our veterans who have issues.”


“They’re nuts, okay? I’m trying to speak in purely medical terms; are you with me? So, as I was saying, during my sessions with these nuts we often discuss dreams. No, that’s not right: we discuss nightmares. Anyway, one of my patients said something rather interesting the other day.”

“Go on.”

Image: TheDigitalArtist, Pixabay, License

“He had a dream – or thought about in a daydream; did you know that daydreaming is asleep while awake? – about going back in time so we started talking about a time machine and the limits of the topic.”

“Okay, what were the limits?”

“First of all, you couldn’t change history, meaning you can’t go back in time and assassinate Hitler. And then you could only stay for a little while; I mean, you can’t like live two lives: go back in time, get married and have kids and grow old and then, just before you die, come back to this time as if nothing happened. So we made it that you can go back in time for just a little while; less than a day or maybe just one day.”

“Just one day. Doesn’t seem like much.”

“It’s a lot; trust me. Like, let’s say you want to know the secret of building the pyramids, why, you just go back when the Great Pyramid of Giza was being built, at the halfway mark. Or maybe attending the winter solstice at Stonehenge.”

“Could you go back and meet yourself and give yourself advice, like don’t do drugs and stay out of bars; go to church?”

“Yes, we talked about that and concluded it would be a waste of time. I decided to be with my grandfather when he saw the Statue of Liberty from the steamer as he arrived in America, legally, from Norway.”

“That must’ve been quite a moment for those immigrants, seeing their dream come true.”

“Yes, but this nut case I was treating, this Vietnam Veteran, really got me to thinking; matter of fact, that particular session was the impetus for why I wrote the book.”

“Well, Zork, don’t keep us in suspense; what did he say?”

“He said something so unselfish it took me by surprise. Matter-of-fact, I told him I couldn’t help him anymore: I did all I could do.”

“We’re waiting. Earth calling Zork.”

“Oh, sorry, I was just daydreaming. You asked what he said that was so profound that it took me by surprise. He said, if he could go back in time, for just one time for just a few hours – mind you, this is from a guy who had issues but overcame them; had a hard time with drugs and getting drunk often enough to make his life many times more difficult than it had to be but, as many have, he not only survived his wife’s cheating but went back to college and graduated with honors as he quit the drugs, cigarettes and alcohol – he said that he wanted to be on the street where Jesus was made to carry the cross and help him, to run up to him and take the burden for just a little while, to do whatever he could to make it better, somehow. And as he said this his tears were flowing, but it wasn’t of sadness; no, they were the tears of pure happiness and joy that marked the passing of a scared young man that survived a fight to the death – a couple of times – over in a little country in Southeast Asia many years ago.”

“He came home.”

“Yes, he came home only to find his mother and dog had died, but he made it back, as they say. Right here, in this room, in the very chair that you’re sitting in now, Roving. Think of it, giving up any knowledge or experience to be able, maybe just for a little while – maybe for only a few steps, or even one – to give an unselfish helping hand to the person who has helped millions, to He who has given hope to us all.”

“Thank you for watching and so, on behalf of the crew and Zork, I’ll be wishing you all a goodnight: Goodnight.

“Good story, Zork. Burger time: my treat.”

Crystal Blue Persuasion” (4:02)


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