I was cranky.
I hadn’t slept, I was overwhelmed and a cardboard cutout of the Princess that turned out to actually be the Princess just bombarded me with information that had nothing to do with my problem. Five minutes ago I was absolutely certain the year was 1984. I was so certain that if I had to write a check out to pay an outstanding balance I would have written “84” in the date line. Of course there aren’t many six year olds who have checking accounts, or those who pay their own bills via checking but that’s beside the point. The point was I wanted to know how the hell was it 2012, not be informed I perpetrated mass genocide on a race of half owl half men creatures.
So I started to yell, then scream then go into one of the greatest temper tantrums of all time. Kicking, screaming, punching, biting a pillow, throwing various items at walls, shattering two glass mirrors, you name it I did it. In fact, my performance was so outstanding that it caught the attention of Fred, who came charging into the room to make sure everything was both hunky and dory.
I didn’t notice he entered until his Kirstie Alley of a left hand engulfed my right shoulder, spinning me around. I immediately knew I had committed a tactical mistake. As much as I didn’t care about Europe’s most bizarre country, I was still crushing hard on the Princess. I didn’t dare tell Fred what I learned, or how I learned it. All I said was,
“I want to go home.”
Looking back it was a brilliant play. By playing the part of a tired, scared little boy who just wanted his mommy back in the forests of Oklahoma, Fred lowered his guard immediately. I’m sure he suspected something was afoot, my words reassured him that he was dealing with a silly child and so he gave a silly answer,
“You will go home soon enough. You just have to get married and live here for eighty years or so.”
Then, without looking back or showing an ounce of sympathy to a crying child he turned around and walked out of the room. I sat on the bed holding my breath, unsure what to do or how to proceed. Fortunately the cardboard cutout of the Princess had knocked herself over and was behind the couch. She called for me to straighten her out so we could resume our talk.
“What you did there was at first very dumb but turned out to be very brave. You could have placed yourself in mortal jeopardy. Now, was there a reason why you freaked out the way you did?”
“Yes. Why is it 2012? I thought it was 1984.”
“Okay here is what you are going to do. Do you remember the two nurses who took care of you after your encounter with Phil the Polar Bear?”
“What did they want to do to you?”
“Grease me up with KY jelly so I could come sliding out of her private place.”
“That’s the key Tom. That’s it. You have to be reborn to once again get on the right timeline.”
“But I don’t understand.”
“Well if you had let me finish telling my story you would already know. Are you going to let me finish?”
“Good, then let’s continue. There are certain places on Earth where, for whatever reason, time and space do not follow the standard set of laws we have in physics. The Bermuda Triangle is one, the island from LOST is another, and the kingdom of Denmark is the third. So far so good?”
I nodded a yes and continued to listen.
“For whatever reason time moves faster here. What would be considered an average day everywhere else in the world, twenty-four hours, is only sixteen here in Denmark. Years are actually months. So what you have perceived as only a little while passing since you first arrived here has actually been twenty eight years.”
“Okay, so why am I still six years old both physically and mentally.”
“That’s why you needed to be reborn via the grandmother nurse. If you came through her birth canal in Denmark your axis would be realigned with all of us and you would be thirty-three going on thirty-four years old right now.”
“And everyone in Denmark has to do this?”
“Oh God no that would be both disgusting and unfortunate for the grandmother nurse. No, the rebirth ceremony only applies to outsiders who plan on one day becoming insiders. You, Tom will marry me and we will rule Denmark. That means you are planning on being here for a very long time. You get me now?”
“I like how random events from earlier in my life play an important part now. It’s almost like someone has mapped everything out and is just following a script.”
“Believe me, there is no script. This is borderline chaos, shit thrown against a wall to see what sticks and what slides down.”
“Okay, so I have to be reborn.”
“You have to be reborn.”
“I will be reborn.”
“You will be reborn.”
“That’s right Tom, re-born.”
“Reborn reborn reborn.”
“Shall I sing it like a song, reeeeeeeeeeeeeeeborn?”
“No don’t do that.”
“I guess what you’re trying to say is I have to be reborn.”
“Yes that is the crux of it.”
That conversation continued for another fifteen minutes, just the two of us saying and restating the word, “reborn” over and over. For some later devotees of me, Tom Starita, this extended dialogue is known as the “Reborn Development,” and every year around March various actors and actresses will dress up in costume and reenact the conversation. Of course I’m getting way ahead of myself here. In my tale of woe and triumph I’m still only six. Let’s get back to the conversation when things returned to actual real dialogue.
“Does Fred know what I must do?”
“Of course, he knows it’s 2012 and you are still only six. Remember though, he is a diabolical one and I’m sure he has plans A through J regarding this. He doesn’t care what he has to do, as long as in the end the story ends with him on the throne and Kim Kardashian at his side.”
“If he could unite the Kingdom of Denmark with Hollywood we would be the most dominant country in the world. We would control public opinion, fashion and reality television forever.”
“Although I don’t want to die and I don’t want to see you murdered either, objectively though how is that a bad thing?”
“Because he is a bad man Tom. A very bad man and he will use his powers for evil.”
“All right you learned your lessons today, now go find that grandmother nurse and climb inside her vagina!”
The cardboard cutout of the Princess gave me a wink and I went running out of the room as if Gene Hackman just gave me the “Hoosiers” speech. I ran out of that room unsure of where exactly I was going but sure of where I ultimately had to be, inside an old vagina.