Friday, November 15, 2019

The Wabbit at his Adventure Caffè

The team assembled at a favourite caffè in Piazza Giambattista Bodoni - and waited for Skratch. They didn't wait long. "Oh look! It's Skratch the Cat," shouted a man. "Ciao Skratch!" yelled a woman. Lapinette turned as customers welcomed the approaching figure. Skratch took a seat. "You're popular," observed the Wabbit. Skratch meaowed. "Must have been my popular lecture series." Lapinette twitched enquiring ears. "Foregrounding factors in signification," explained Skratch. Everyone applauded but the Wabbit tapped the table. "So tell us, Skratch. What kind of adventure did we just have?" Skratch laughed. "I'm tempted to say it was about the semiotics of light." Wabsworth nodded sagely. "My thoughts exactly. Typically absurd, the adventure's narratology configured around light itself." Lapinette rummaged under her frock for a spare copy of Samuel Beckett's Comment c'est, L'image, which she kept for reading emergencies - and lifted a paw. "The light followed, illuminated and ultimately reversed the adventure's absurdist flow." Wabsworth laughed heartily. "So the Wabbit would like to be indifferent to the universe, but the universe is not indifferent to him." The Wabbit nodded his head in agreement. "I think I'm somewhere between being and nothingness." He pointed at the empty tray and then raised a paw for service. "And only halfway to an aperitivo."

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

5. The Wabbit and the Abstract Place

The Wabbit and Lapinette climbed along the stairs. It was hard because water sloshed everywhere. They were slipping and sliding until they passed through a threshold of solid water. They pushed hard and their heads popped out on the weir on the River Po, more or less as Big Blue Snail had promised. The Wabbit patted his reflection and Lapinette did the same. The river eddied around their paws. The Wabbit shook his head. It was a weird weir and no mistake. "Which way is up?" he asked. "I think it's us that's up," said Lapinette. "This is an abstract place," commented the Wabbit. Lapinette nodded her head in vigorous agreement. It was then that she saw the beam floating towards them, the one they'd met before. Its course was slow and measured and it made not a ripple as it drew closer to the weir. The Wabbit waved. "I thought you were going to Venice?" The beam bumped against the breakwater. "I'm afraid no matter how hard I try, I never get further than this." The Wabbit leaned across. "Let me give you a helping paw." He placed a paw under the beam and flipped it over. For a moment it balanced, half on and half off the crest of the weir. Then it tipped, plunged and lay floating on the other side. It called up. "Maybe I don't want to go after all." Lapinette giggled. "Go on, take a risk." Now the beam was moving quicker and soon it was out of sight. "Make a wish," said Lapinette. The Wabbit grinned. "I wish we were both on the beam, sailing down to Venice." "Got the Po Delta Blues," laughed Lapinette ...

Monday, November 11, 2019

4. The Wabbit and the Mobius Snail

The fog cleared and there stood a familiar figure. "What are you doing on my strip, Wabbit?" The Wabbit and Lapinette breathed a sigh of relief. The Wabbit began to tell the story but Snail wiggled his antennae in dismissal. "Please don't burden me with a long explanation. You're here now." The Wabbit grinned. "Well why are you here, my slithering friend?" The clouds of gas abated a little and Snail's head became clearer. "This is my Mobius strip and I am here to practice keep-fit mathematical exercises." Lapinette laughed out loud. "Are these clouds your gaseous snail goo?" Snail inflated his chest and raised his shell. "Yes indeed, they represent my considerable physical efforts." "How do we get off the strip?" asked the Wabbit, "We've lost our orientation." Snail gestured with his antennae. Vapour swirled to reveal a shadowy stairway. "You must understand that the strip is a topographical construct," he said, "So please take the topographical stairs. But be careful - they're a bit one sided." "Where do they go to?" asked Lapinette. "A simply-connected domain," replied Snail. "Where's that exactly?" sighed the Wabbit. "Near the river," laughed Snail. But Lapinette was already climbing the stairs and calling down to the Wabbit. "I can see our house from here." The Wabbit made for the stairs, but just before he started to climb, he turned to Snail and said. "I don't suppose you ever lose your way ..?"

Saturday, November 09, 2019

3. The Wabbit, Lapinette and the Fence

The banister in the Cinema had got on their nerves. So when the Wabbit and Lapinette found themselves facing a high wooden fence across the street they were furious. "Where'd this come from?" said the Wabbit. "Beats me," replied Lapinette. They looked around. There was nothing whatsoever left - except the fence. They traced along it - but it didn't seem to end. "I think this was where we started," said Lapinette. She thought for a bit. "I tell you what. You go one way and I'll go the other." They both set off - and within a minute they both met. Then they tried the other way but within a short space of time they were face to face. "A Mobius fence?" shrugged Lapinette. The Wabbit had heard worse explanations. "I'll climb up and see,"  he said. Lapinette punted him up and he was nearly at the top when clouds of gas swirled over the fence. "I can't see a thing," grunted the Wabbit. The gas clung onto Lapinette's frock. She tried to brush it away. "Yuk, it's sticky!" The vapour was cloying but she summoned energy and gave the Wabbit an extra punt up. He flew over the top of the fence. A moment elapsed before she heard him drop to the other side. "I'll try walking along it on this side," shouted the Wabbit. Lapinette listened to his paw steps fade. Then they got closer. Suddenly his face peered directly through the gas. "It only has one side," he sighed. "I told you so," said Lapinette. The Wabbit ran his paws through his fur, then gestured in the air. "What's this for a sack of hammers ..?"

Wednesday, November 06, 2019

2. The Wabbit and the Banister Rail

The Wabbit and Lapinette forgot all about the talking beam on the river and went to the movies. But when they came out, the Wabbit stooped to examine a banister rail. "It's a good thing all wood doesn't talk." He shook it until the supports rattled. "Can I help you find your way out?" said the rail. Lapinette looked at the rail in a quizzical way. "How many are you?" The Banister shook himself. Light glistened from his varnish. "Many? Why?" came the response. The Wabbit tapped the rail lightly with a paw. "We met one of your number down on the river." "Him!" yelled the rail, "Is he still floating around?" Lapinette smiled. "He's on his way to Venice?" The rail almost arched in the air. "He's never gone further than the weir. He's a layabout. A rough sort." The Wabbit and Lapinette looked at each other and winked. "Oh, you don't believe me?" The rail shook with anger. "He's not like us. We're carefully-prepared ... and delicately moulded." The Wabbit hopped back and caught Lapinette's eye. He gestured to the stairs with his ears. "Urgent appointment," he said. But the banister rail wouldn't stop. "I've met film stars you know. William Shatner ran his hand along my varnish." "Me too," said Lapinette. The Wabbit hopped forward again and dragged Lapinette by the paw down the stairs. "I go all the way down!" yelled the rail. The Wabbit and Lapinette ran across the foyer and into the street. "That banister better belt up," shouted the Wabbit, "or he's dead wood!"

Tuesday, November 05, 2019

1. The Wabbit and the Floating Beam

The Wabbit wandered along the riverside and then wandered back to the jetty. He was in deep contemplation, as was his way between missions. "Hello Wabbit! That ol' riverboat don't go nowhere no more." The Wabbit laughed. "Hello Lapinette. I know, I was just thinking about a swim." Lapinette giggled. She knew the likelihood of the Wabbit plunging into the Po was slim as a cigarette paper. "Water's looking a bit murky today," she observed. The Wabbit nodded because it was none too clean. "I was watching bits of debris floating past." He gestured at the river. ".. and to each piece I attached one of my problems." Lapinette nodded sagely and listened. "Then," said the Wabbit, "I watched them until they passed out of sight on their way to Venice." Lapinette raised an eye. "How long would they take to get there?" "It depends," grinned the Wabbit, "maybe a week." "So no problem," shrugged Lapinette. The water behind them swirled. Something clunked on the jetty steps. "It takes longer than that," said a voice. The Wabbit didn't look round but Lapinette did. "That floating beam spoke!" The Wabbit started to hop away. "Everyone's a critic," he sighed. But Lapinette persisted. "Are you flotsam or jetsam?" The beam bobbed up and down on the eddies, displacing tiny bubbles. "Neither. I am my own wood." The Wabbit grunted and turned to look. The beam floated out midstream and called. "Do you have a problem?" The Wabbit winked and grinned. The beam returned inshore. The Wabbit leaned down and hissed, "Problem is my middle name..."

Saturday, November 02, 2019

The Wabbit's Adventure Caffè

The team met in Piazza Carlo Felice at a caffè they'd seldom visited. It was a little chilly that day, but no one cared. "Where's Skratch?" asked the Wabbit. "Behind you," meaowed a voice. Lapinette laughed. "Cats stroll in when they like." Skratch vaulted the rope barrier, took his seat and meaowed again. "So what was that for a sort of adventure?" Wabsworth wanted to be the first to comment and he'd spent the best part of his android day, speed reading a whole film library. "It was an adventure that specified the ultimate in antinomies, the struggle between good and evil." Lapinette nodded. "That signifies an emotional semiotic system, reified by way of names." Skratch nodded sagely. "Fredric Jameson does suggest that, but I felt that the adventure embodied a formal subversion often typified by nouvelle vague." "Structural or stylistic?" murmured the Wabbit. "In realism?" asked Wabsworth. Everyone could hear his circuitry whirring. "In Godard," responded Skratch. Wabsworth's circuits stopped buzzing and he launched himself forward. "The adventure was a most strident hyper-realism, which codified fundamental antinomes." Skratch laughed. "Aha! It was through comedy then, that motivation, plausibility and belief were all dramatically confronted and transmuted." The Wabbit broke into an enormous grin. He leaned back and whistled. "So it was good then ..?"

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

The Wabbit's Hallowe'en Surprise

The Wabbit turned up slightly early for his Hallowe'en get together. This time he was ready. He'd brought his axe and a small gizmo that made his voice warble. He decided to practice. "I aaaam the Bunneemaaaan!"  His voice echoed across Pluto Park in a very spooky manner. The echoes died away. He ran his paw across the axe blade. It was suitably blunted for the occasion and presented little danger. "Bunneeeemaaaan!" The voice came from behind the Wabbit - and even though he knew it might be a trick, his blood ran cold. He decided to play along. "No! I am the Bunnyman!" he yelled and he turned. But there was his doppelganger, dumping the axe head on the ground. Up and down it went, making a hollow rapping noise on the concrete. The Wabbit drew a breath. He wished he'd brought a sharp axe, but reached for his automatic instead. It wasn't to be found and he cursed. Way above his head and deftly hidden in the mural, Lapinette stifled a giggle. Skratch dug her in the ribs. He meaowed softly all the same and Wabsworth sniggered. The Wabbit's ears twitched. "I smell a rat," he said firmly, "That's a cardboard cut out!" But with a sudden lunge his double tore towards him. The Wabbit turned to run, but he lost his footing and fell. That was when his tormentors took pity and came down from their hiding place. But the double's eyes flashed and the heavy axe smashed down. Lapinette gasped in horror. A shot rang out. The double dropped. The Wabbit picked himself up and tucked his automatic into his fur. "Good working model," he said. "That's not our model," said Lapinette. "No. It's mine," grinned the Wabbit, "I changed it ..."

Monday, October 28, 2019

14. The Wabbit insists on a Devil's Coda

"I rather insist on a coda," said the Wabbit. "I absolutely agree," said Lapinette. The Wabbit pointed. "I think that's the door," he muttered. "Who the devil's going to clear up?" asked Lapinette. "I'll have a word with the cleaning staff," grinned the Wabbit. "They'll want a bonus," replied Lapinette. "They'll deserve one and they'll get a good one," agreed the Wabbit. He grabbed what was left of the door and opened it for Lapinette. "So our ghostly priest dispatched the cultist who murdered him?" said Lapinette. "Straight over the balcony in Episode Eight," smiled the Wabbit. "Yes," said Lapinette, "We flushed 'em out." "And he did the deed," nodded the Wabbit. "So all's square," said Lapinette. "Hah! Square, frame and order!" The Wabbit winked and continued down the gloomy stairway. Lapinette skipped down the steps after him and sped ahead. Then she turned and called back. "Did we beat the Devil?" "I think we ran faster," replied the Wabbit. "Then we won!" said Lapinette. "We won the heat," laughed the Wabbit, "but the Devil probably wants a replay." Lapinette scurried to the bottom of the steps and about to push open the door. She looked around. "The Devil is persistent, give him his due." Just then they heard a ghastly voice echoing from the walls. "Until the next time, rabbits ...!"

Saturday, October 26, 2019

13. The Wabbit and the Marching Priests

"Here we are," said the Wabbit and he pressed a remote control. Lapinette waved the Cultists in with a theatrical signal. A mirrored door opened and through it came the duplicate priests, marching as one. They waved their bibles as they marched and sang in spooky voices that the Wabbit had recorded.  "Oh when the priests! Oh when the priests!" The Wabbit joined in. "come marchin' in." The Satanists of the Rabbit Foot Cult froze, speechless. One by one they sank to their knees. The Priests came closer and closer. They waved their bibles in the faces of the Satanists like Mao Zedong waved his red book. One of the Satanists cried in a feeble voice. "All hail the Rabbit Foot Cult!" A priest whacked him over the head with his bible. Then all the priests moved forward, trampling Satanists underfoot. The Cult lay everywhere on the floor, crying for forgiveness and praising the Lord God Almighty. But the priests continued whacking until all the Satanists were silent. It was carnage. "Wabbit! You can switch them off now," gulped Lapinette. The Wabbit pressed a button and the priests stopped moving. All except for one. He smiled at Lapinette and poked the Wabbit in the ribs. "Thank you both!" He twitched his rabbit nose and made the sign of the cross. "Be seeing you!" Then he began to vanish, just like before. The ears were almost the last to go and they wiggled a farewell. Only the bible remained. The Wabbit picked it up and stuck it in his fur. "Might come in handy." "What about the Cultists' bodies?" asked Lapinette. But when they looked, all had gone. "Let's get a drink," said Lapinette.

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

12. The Wabbit's Welcome

The trap was laid. The marks were set up. All the Wabbit and Lapinette needed from the Rabbits Foot Cult was gullibility. A knock came to the old unused door at the back of the building. The Wabbit answered. He led them in to a dark and dingy hall and up a flight of rickety stairs. Even the biggest of the Cult seemed nervous and his followers shook in their cloven hooves. The stairs cricked and creaked. "I don't like the dark," said one. "I don't like rickety stairs," said another. "Shut up," said the leader, "They said we'd be able to drink the blood of virgins." A follower moaned a long moan. "Don't they have anything else?" "You're supposed to be a Satanist!" yelled the leader, "You'll drink it and like it." The Wabbit and Lapinette beckoned them on. "Just a little bit now, not much farther." She scampered up a few more steps. "My hooves hurt," said a Satanist. "Don't worry. I promise you a black mass to remember," said the Wabbit. Lapinette was going to say it would be the party of a lifetime but she thought better of it. "This better be good," said the leader, "I cancelled an important Satanic engagement." "We have goat curry," smiled the Wabbit. "What about bats?" said a Satanic follower. "I hate bats!" said another. "Bats are off," shrugged the Wabbit. "Eek! What's that over there?" said another of the Cult. There was a crash as he stumbled on the stairs. "An in-house ghoul," said Lapinette ...

Monday, October 21, 2019

11. The Wabbit and the Original Copies

The Wabbit worked all night to get the duplicate priests right. They needed to be convincing to scare the Satanists. Lapinette arrived and she was quietly impressed. The Wabbit waved a screwdriver. "I think they'll do." Lapinette poked a priest on the nose. "Do they talk?" The Wabbit fished in his fur for a remote control. "Go in peace, my child," said the Priest. She poked it again and the priest gave a hollow laugh. "Holy Moly," he said. Lapinette wagged a disapproving paw. "Wabbit, you go too far!" She poked another priest. The Wabbit pressed his remote control. "The Lord is your shepherd," uttered the priest. "My shepherd," said Lapinette. "I can't get that one right," scowled the Wabbit. Lapinette sighed. "OK. So what's the plan?" asked Lapinette. The Wabbit suppressed a snigger. "We hide out in the Hall of Mirrors and when the Satanists arrive, the priest replicas will all come in." "They move?" gasped Lapinette. The Wabbit pressed his remote. The priests began walking around. One of them pushed another and the other pushed him back. "They need more work," said the Wabbit. "What next?" asked Lapinette. "They sing, well - chant." Lapinette didn't bother asking, she just waited. The Wabbits 28 teeth glinted in a menacing fashion and he burst into tune. "'I wanna be in that number. When these priests come marchin' in.' and then they clap." Lapinette shook her head and shrugged. "I don't know about the Satanists, but that certainly frightens me."

Friday, October 18, 2019

10. The Wabbit and the Hall of Mirrors

"I think we'll use this," said the Wabbit. "I never knew about this room," said Lapinette. The Wabbit wore half a grin. "No-one comes here, it's too spooky." Lapinette looked around. "Is this the Hall of Angels?" She gave a little shove and the door creaked under her. "The Hall of the Cherubim," said the Wabbit. "What about the Seraphim?" asked Lapinette. "Too much hovering," said the Wabbit. Lapinette made the door creak again. "How do you know where you really are?" "I don't," said the Wabbit, "That's why I hold onto the door." This time the Wabbit made the door creak. Lapinette giggled. "What's the plan?" "The Satanists are coming by invitation." announced the Wabbit, "They won't know where they are. The Cherubim will frighten them." "But they're only paintings, dear Wabbit," said Lapinette. This time she made the door swing wide and the Wabbit clung for dear life in case he got lost. "We'll make the paintings speak and confront their malignosity." Lapinette screamed with laughter. "There's no such word as malignosity." "All the more frightening," sighed the Wabbit. He paused for effect, but Lapinette swung the door and for a moment he found himself outside. He pushed his way back in. "When the Satanist look in the mirrors," he said, "they'll see the rabbit priest they murdered." "How?" said Lapinette. The Wabbit shrugged. "I'll make cardboard cut-outs like you see in the cinema - and attach a motor." "Ghostbots," smiled Lapinette.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

9. The Wabbit and the Devil's Door

Safely out of sight, the Wabbit and Lapinette stood with their back to a door. "We need to set a trap for the Rabbit Leg Cult," panted the Wabbit. He knocked on the door just for fun. It made a hollowed out empty sound. "So what attracts a Satanist?" mused Lapinette. The Wabbit didn't have to think. "Hedonism, transgression, energy, and power." "This might the Devil's Den," said Lapinette. She too knocked on the door. She wrinkled her nose. "It smells of mould and sweat." The Wabbit looked at it with more suspicion than a scrap yard dog. "Aha! Definitely where these devils diddle." Lapinette's eyes twinkled. "Let's have a look." The Wabbit stepped back. "Do you have a twenty sided dice?" "Not with me," grinned Lapinette. The Wabbit shook his head in disappointment, then span around three times. "Hocus pocus, a plague of locusts. Bim Bam Bom. Open sez me." The door stood where it was. His face fell. "That was my best spell." Lapinette smiled and bowed. Then she unhooked a padlock and slid back a bolt. They heard a voice. "Who goes there?" "Just us mice," said the Wabbit. "Dio Cane!" said an angry voice. "Just advance warning for the Satanist's Rabbit Leg Ball," yelled Lapinette. She nudged the Wabbit and announced directions. "Bring your friends!" shouted the Wabbit.

Monday, October 14, 2019

8. The Wabbit and Lapinette lose Grip

Morning came - and with it an icy frost that melted quickly in the sun. That was when the Wabbit and Lapinette lost adhesion. One second they were stuck fast and in the next they fell without warning from the wall. The fox waved goodbye. She'd been waiting for breakfast and now she was disappointed. "Yikes!" yelled the Wabbit as he span towards the sidewalk. Lapinette pirouetted gracefully down but she saw some movement out the corner of an eye. It was a Satanist, strolling onto a balcony. Lapinette knew he would raise the alarm, but as she fell she noticed something else. A green figure appeared behind him. It was the rabbit priest. She saw him grab the Satanist round the waist and then with his other paw, give him a mighty push. She heard an anguished cough as the Satanist doubled over the rail. He was about to plunge onto the road but the priest caught him by the leg and dangled him upside down for a moment. He said something, made the sign of the cross - and let him go. The Satanist tumbled onto the road head-first with a splat. The priest vanished. It was all over in an instant and Lapinette found herself on the sidewalk with the Wabbit. They stood and caught their breaths. "What did you see?" asked the Wabbit. "Poetic justice," replied Lapinette.