Friday, August 19, 2011

A Letter to the Swamp

Dear Mr. Dismal Swamp.

    Times have been rough for you lately. I mean, the government has been stealing you and converting you into useful, arable land, you kinda smell funny, and you’ve got a serious pest problem. The History Channel has even begun a vigorous and aggressive campaign against your Floridian and Louisianan cousins depicting toothless, amoeba brained men that exploit your resources for various reasons. Now, don’t get me wrong, I support using natural resources in a responsible manner, but those shows are a little over the top mostly because of the people in them, not because of the swamps.
      You are who you are though and I can respect that. In a way, your aforementioned maladies give you an endearing quality. Sorta like Oscar The Grouch. He’s rude, lives in a trash can, and smells too but he was always a favorite character of mine when I was child. And even though I loved Oscar, I doubt I would have given him a hug, given the opportunity. Similarly, I doubt I would venture to give you a hug either.
      But you need a hug right now. You’ve got a serious problem and it seems to only be getting worse. A lightning strike, or what some would call a terrible smiting from on high, set you ablaze. So now, you’ve got bugs, an odor problem, and a raging fire in your armpit. The problem is, that your muddy, unkept self is making it difficult for our best to put that fire out. Perhaps you should consider keeping a tidier place so that next time you have company, people won’t be sloshing around in your muck. They say cleanliness is next to godliness, perhaps that’s why you were smited, or is it smote? I’m not sure, but either way, you are a slob. Despite the fact that I think, on an abstract level, the chemical processes fueling your fire are interesting, I really wish you’d consider my advice in cleaning up in order to avoid this next time.
     Now, you may ask your self why I am taking the time to write you a letter. In fact, I would bet my neighbors RV that this is the very first letter you have ever received. I’m confident your lazy, sloppy cousins aren’t put together enough to write at Christmas. I hope I’m right, because I would hate to see my neighbors RV leave. They are currently retired and spend a lot of time on the go because of that big brown bus in their driveway. If they were to be stuck at home all the time, I’m positive I would see a significant increase in the (already copious) amount of stray cats hanging around my house. Neighbor lady feeds them and calls them her babies, which seems nice until you stand at my front door and are assaulted by the rancid odor of cat feces in my garden bed. But I digress.
     I’m writing you, Mr. Dismal Swamp, because you owe me exactly two hours of lost sleep. I will, of course, accept repayment in the form of a jet ski and/or a new truck as I know that time can’t exactly be replaced or returned.
     You may ask your self why you are responsible for my two hours of lost sleep.
     Well, this morning at approximately o dark thirty and whilst dreaming of Scarlett Johansson, I suddenly awoke in a terrible fit. There was a very strong smell of burning in the house and, in my half awake mind, it was assuredly on fire. Scarlett and the go kart ride we were enjoying was quickly forgot as I hurriedly and clumsily exfiltrated my bed. Damaging my closet door in the process and smashing at least three of my toes, I ran to my son’s room. His undoubtedly vivid dreams of chocolate covered monster trucks were interrupted by his crazy old man yelling.
     “There’s a fire! There’s a fire!”
     I grabbed my surprised son and ran down the stairs, thankful they were not on fire, and out the front door. Once outside, I noticed there was smoke everywhere! I thought to myself, “The whole neighborhood is on fire! Surely, the end times are at hand!”
     Of course, all of this happened in the blink of an eye. Just as I realized my house was not on fire, my two year old son looked at me curiously and said “Daddy, no fire.”
     Now, if you have children you know that once they are awake, they are awake. So I sat in bed with my son, trying to doze back off while he watched TV and intermittently smacked me in the face to make sure I was still alive. Why do they do that?
     So you see, Mr. Dismal Swamp, you are directly responsible for my lost two hours via the smoke from your fire. I will gladly accept repayment as described above. Yamaha makes excellent jet skis. I hear they are fast and reliable. I would really like a Ford F-150 but if you can’t afford it, a used Toyota Tacoma will do. Just make sure to get something with four doors as I need to accommodate a child with better sense than I.




  1. Very nice letter, but I'm sure that Mr. Dismal Swamp will not bother to reply, except for sending spiders and mosquitoes to your door in retaliation.

  2. This is great. Sorry you lost your sleep. Made me giggle though.

  3. Yep, I can see it taking place now.