Even More Mike & Gary: Parrot Man

Gary was Mike’s first visitor in prison after his conviction for drugs and maiming a police officer with the bomb in the trunk of his car. Gary’s visit was not a social one.

“There are a lot of old men who are very nervous.”

They sat in silence for a moment.

Gary already knew the answer though. Mike had several broken ribs. If he had talked, they would have grabbed Gary before he ever got to visit with him. He had kept his mouth shut and that concluded the purpose of the visit.

“Best of luck in the cage, kid.”

It would be years before they met again. Gary retired to Costa Rica and opened a bar. There, he became known as ‘Parrot Man.’ Mike learned this from the locals when he went to visit him, though he had no idea why Gary had earned the moniker.

When Mike eventually found Gary’s home, which was difficult to reach in the Costa Rican jungle, he found it was a simple hut. There was a dead parrot, stiff with rigor mortis, in the yard, which looked like it had seen better days.

In the main room, there was a six by three by three foot cage with a lock on it.

“What’s that?” he inquired.

“Oh, that. There was a parrot who destroyed the roof of the hut. I fixed it. Then the parrot came back and destroyed it again.”

Gary was fidgeting with something. He was still creating inventions for use in covert ops. Old habits like that one and living like a Spartan remained despite his retirement.

“So I captured it and put it in the cage. I gave it enough water for three days. Then, when I was sure it was looking at me, I swallowed the key. It died in the cage.”

Gary saw Mike’s reaction.

“Don’t feel sorry for that damn bird. It tore up my roof. It could easily have dug its way out of the cage. It had sharp talons. It didn’t want to live.”

As they talked into the night, Gary explained that, in Vietnam, he had seen a lot of young Americans die for no good reason. It had not been his place to question it, he said, merely to do the best job that he could. His personal politics had made no difference in his actions while there. However, this admission makes one wonder if that wasn’t part of his motivation for blowing up that general’s car in the first place.

Gary died in Costa Rica.

Conclusion

One thing that these accounts show, true as memory can account for, is that there is often more to stories than we are used to believing and that even when we suspect there is more to a story, our trust may be misplaced in assuming something is being done in secret for our benefit. Mainstream media has us quickly defining stories, such as drug busts and shootouts, a certain way and those ways are not the full story and often leave out the important bits such as why things we perceive as big problems persist indefinitely. Choices are given, often bad and worse and we take them because that is all that is offered.

This is not freedom. This is a simulation of freedom; an illusion of liberty hiding the fact that the age of man and the nation state is ending and the age of a construct is beginning. The age of the gargantuan multinational corporation is merely dawning. They are only loyal to themselves, they do not create jobs but rather profit from deleting them, they thrive on human misery and strife, capitalize on poverty, illness, and hopelessness, they distract us–with the aid of our elected and appointed officials and our corporate media–from the real problems and real culprits. Life from here on to the foreseeable future is going to be about constant fear; fear of being stepped on because a thing decided to step on communities did so; fear of the opposition because that is what the news–or what will pass for it–will tall you that you should be afraid of. This is a moment in time predicted by so many good and bad science fiction stories and yet we fail to recognize it as such because we are living inside it. What passes for normal today would have been completely absurd, totally insane, a mere few decades ago. People persist in thinking everything is sort of random. While I would not go as far as to say everything is not random, there is a lot more that is not, that is planned, executed, and even when things go awry, the fallout is controlled and all for a few simple goals: Distraction, increasing power and profits, and keeping the majority of the population from having a say by siphoning off their wealth and rights a little at a time.

If you can stop and think like a psychopath for a moment, it really becomes clear. What is the end result of the negative TSA coverage? Privatizing airport security which will result in cheaper pay for workers but bigger profits for those who own the companies with the contracts. So it is with this week’s pair of police executions. Politicians will not increase funding to improve training; they will not send money to communities so individuals can get better educations and jobs; they will instead privatize the police and then you’ll only have law enforcement services–aka justice–if you can afford it and you pose no threat to the special interests who control it.

Your dystopia is here. You just need to open your eyes.

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