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Archive for October, 2011

Twice upon a time there was Max the village’s only shepherd. Max was the thirteenth of his mother and father’s twelve children. Max was born with a silver spoon in his mouth which figuratively isn’t a bad thing, but in Max’s case it was literal, making it very awkward when his mother attempted to breast feed him.

Max’s pasture was on the border of Wales and Scotland. (Don’t go look it up on a map, because this is my story and I can write anything I want.) Max was the shepherd of a very unusual flock of sheep. Unlike normal sheep that have to be sheared first before their wool can be made into sweaters, Max’s sheep didn’t have wool. They had sweaters. Some were cardigans, some pullovers, and the black sheep of the flock was a turtle neck, which caused a number of eyes to be raised because the only turtle in the vicinity was a loose living reptile that had this sheepish grin.

Max was bored. His life had turned grey and there was the problem with his teacher, Miss Gulch who didn’t appreciate the fact that Max’s sheep followed him to school one day. And then there was the bullying. Max’s wardrobe was less than boyish. It’s true that he wore the typical shepherd’s tunic, but Max’s footwear was far from traditional. He wore ruby slippers because red was his favorite color. People wondered about Max.

On impulse Max sold his entire flock of sweaters, with the exception of Turtle Neck, to Ye Olde Abercrombie and Fitch and took his small fortune and sought to find his dream at the spiritual center of the nearest city of Oz. Unlike other cities that boasted magnificent cathedrals, the citizens of Oz had toiled for years building a casino.

Max entered the casino at Oz with Turtle Neck at his side and went straight to the roulette table. He removed the leather purse containing his sweater money and poured the contents out on the table. He yelled, “all of it one red!”

The rouletteer spun the wheel and as it slowed down the little white ball jumped back and forth. And when it stopped a “hush” fell over the crowd, which wasn’t a good thing because in my story a hush is a speeding object from outer space.

The “hush” crashed through the glass ceiling of the casino in the ballroom where it landed squarely on Betty White who was appearing in Dancing with the Stars with her partner Derek Hough. Judge Len Goodman held up his paddle and said “Fore!” which he should have yelled sooner because it might have given poor Betty White a chance to dodge the “hush.”

But back in the game room the wind began to switch – the casino to pitch and suddenly the hinges started to unhitch. And oh, what happened then was rich. The casino began to pitch…and you know how the  rest of it goes.

Max and Turtle Neck were transported over the rainbow to Kansas.

And with that “along the yellow brick road” comes to a close. And while the blog will stay up, Dorothy and her traveling companions will go their separate ways.

Since its inception in January 2010, the YBR has had 10,000 views…averaging 15 views a day, from a one-day high of 154 to a low of 0.  (For some reason, two blogs, “Beginning to see God Again for the First Time on the YBR,” and “My Three Fathers. A Father’s Day Reflection on the YBR” earned a combined total of 5,600 views, with both of them scoring views every day. Go figure.)

The end of the YBR does not necessarily mean the end of my blogging, but at the moment I want to focus my attention on a book I’ve been hired to write and another project I’ve been contracted to complete by the end of January.

Although I would like to conclude the YBR by answering the question Glinda asked Dorothy before she clicked her heels, “And what did you learn?” I believe I would like to save that answer for a book I want to write about the meaning of Oz.

There’s still facebook and twitter. My facebook goals are to come up with some really pithy and relevant quotes or some awesome lyrics I can post to the amazement of my facebook friends. And when I really learn how to tweet, I’ll tweet my ass off.

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