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Mrs. Ordinary drank red wine at 3 PM in her kitchen, trying to numb her nerves and pondering how to get rid of her aunt who was suppose to stay through next Wednesday. She couldn’t take it any more. Tomorrow they would hike into the mountains of Yellowmoon and she would tell her. Get a room in town or leave. Sucking on teeth in the middle of the night, snoring, getting up early and staying up late watching cartoons on TV. Yosemite Sam, pheh. How did we come from the same gene pool? I need my 9 hours beauty rest and she needs like 5!

She awakes at 8:25, a bit before the 9 she usually does. Elvira of course was already in the living room watching the boob tube. The sound of an especially loud cartoon explosion stirred her. Seems like Bugs pulled out the atomics in a desperate attempt to win the mayoral race from Sam this morning. He planned to get rid of all insects when elected, and Bugs had no choice but to try to stop him. Atomic cigars — that should do the trick. But, no, here comes Sam again, all blackened and without hair or clothes but still quite alive, ready for yet another battle in the war that will only end at the ballot box.

“Elvira, could you please put on some clothes, hmph. And what’s that all over your face, dear? You look like a golden statue.”

“Avocado mask. For the man who is suppose to enter my life today. My horoscope predicted (!). Here.” She picks up the Daily Toilet and rustles it in front of her naked body, then offers it over to her, which Liza (Mrs. Ordinary) reluctantly takes as the TV explodes again. “There… take a look at Scorpio. You’re Taurus… you may not understand, being from the Earth and more grounded with your own life in general. Scorpios need relationships. Scorpios need…”

“Don’t say it, Aunt. Not after last Friday when you brought that town bum Otis back and kept him all night on the couch with you. I know what you need.” Doctored watermelon this time, but of course Sam emerged okay.

Hiking today. How could she possibly meet a man way up there in the grey nothingness where no one hardly lives? But she did. Another Ant, but not the human kind. It’s like they both fell into the TV set after putting on their walking shoes and came out in Looneytoonville with Bugs and Sam and the rest. And perhaps they did.

She took one last look at the TV before switching it off. The cartoon had changed. She hesitated, then sat back down on the couch with her aunt, the paper still opened up to the horoscope section between them. Expect a tall, spindly stranger to enter your life today, it said. She studied the small orange castle on the screen, noted the pixelated cartoon man pulling the cartoon woman toward him with an impossibly long and wavy lasso, then entering the castle gates with her, the assumption being they got “married.” Over and over this happened. It did not get boring.

“What’s the name of this one, Elvira?” The show predicted the future inside the past. Then they were *there*.

(to be continued)

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