T-Bonz, Part 1
So we finally come to the well advertized adventures of T-Bonz on CREEK. As you can see he has some compatriots on his journey, namely what’s called the Mmmmmm’s. These are 3 in number, 2 being red and 1 green. The two red ones are called Cherry and Berry. The green one’s name is Verdy, a moniker not unconnected, as it turns out, to the Verdigris name choice for Baker Bloch’s and Hucka D.’s camping spot at the AI5 volcano. And as will become evident as the series rolls along especially, Verdy is a favorite of T-Bonz. At first I couldn’t wrap my brain around this favoritism, but RL wife Edna summed it up neatly one day: there are, after all, *2* red Mmmmmm’s, and if one is lost there’s always the other to act as a spare. There’s only 1 green Mmmmmm in contrast; if he’s lost then that’s it for the green strain of the species.
So here we have the whole band rezzing in from unknown locations beside the two CREEK tiles already photographed several times for this blog. From now on this rock will be known as Rez Rock, or perhaps RR for short.
In short fashion, they investigate all the nearby, manmade objects that also mysteriously appear in or around CREEK at this point. T-Bonz is wondering the same thing that I, baker b., am: is this the remains of a lost civilization, perhaps of “renegade” avatars from the SL grid? It’s a radical thought, admittedly.
T-Bonz readily sends either Cherry or Berry — I can’t tell one from the other yet — into the dangerous mouth of a rusty old pipe. Notice Verdy remains with T-Bonz, away from any potential immediate danger.
What luck! T-Bonz and the Mmmmmm’s, thinking they had a hike of perhaps several days ahead of them through rough terrain, instead find this old goodmobile, as the Mmmmmm’s describe it to T-Bonz, and still in working status. This proves that other Mmmmmm’s use to inhabit this area, or perhaps still are in the area somewhere. This came as a complete surprise to both T-Bonz and his own small troup of Mmmmmm’s, although Verdy seemed less surprised than the others. So with a couple of spoken commands, they were off the ground and flying speedily along toward Jonesborough, reaching it in a matter of minutes instead of days.
Cherry and Berry didn’t get to enjoy much of the view while in flight, as there was only room at the lip of the vehicle for T-Bonz and his favorite.
The group safely down and landed at the heart of Jonesborough, as described in the former series of posts. This is on the elongated rock that forms the northern boundary of the aforementioned open space. T-Bonz and the Mmmmmm’s use another dead tree to lower themselves to the open space, intending to get to the bridge and the other side of Jonesborough, or the rock wall/cave/white jut complex.
“Hey, we’re on the wrong tree!” barks T-Bonz to his subordinates. “We need to be on *that* tree; that’s the bridge!”
Also I should mention that between the two trees here T-Bonz and co. find another rusty old goodmobile, but don’t realize that someone has also used this to recently fly into Jonesborough.
T-Bonz and the Mmmmmm’s cross the bridge into “Jonesborough West,” unsuspecting of the visitors that already lurk in the area. Will T-Bonz sadly lose his only green Mmmmmm? Will he even lose his other arm? (I”ll tell the story of the first arm loss soon, perhaps). Or will all instead share a nice cup of tea? We’ll know shortly!
Three Days Earlier…
As hinted at before, this particular party of 4, just like the later party of 4, find a goodmobile, and probably at the same place as well. We know now that the sole Mmmmmm of this particular party would know what a goodmobile is, and how to use one.
The goodmobile’s landing is not a smooth one this time, however, for various reasons, perhaps because these “characters” combined weight is a little more than T-Bonz and his 3 Mmmmmm’s. But I’m not sure of this either. At any rate, here’s the “crash” site. Screamer, as I’ll call him for obvious reasons, at first appears dead to the others just after the landing, but turns out to be only frozen in fear. It takes several minutes for him to become unimmobilized, um, mobilized I suppose.
In short time they arrive at the log bridge over (Tile) CREEK, just as T-Bonz and his Mmmmmm’s
do will 3 days later. But in the case of this earlier party, a recent rain has made the bridge too wet to cross immediately, in their judgment.
A decision that proves to be prudent (!) since one of the troupe slips and falls to his untimely death from the west end of the log immediately afterwards. This is Bill Fork, who himself comes from another band of 4 but which is now reduced to 3.
The remaining 3 from *this* band proceed to higher ground to avoid being eaten by roaming wildlife that the lone Mmmmmm, orange in this case, warns them about. Not a comfortable perch for the night, admittedly, and in the middle of it Screamer dies of fear after hearing a long and deep growl from below.
The next day the two survivors of the preceding day, out of 4, cross the bridge into Jonesborough West, like T-Bonz and his Mmmmmms will do after them, now only 2 days behind.
And now I’m up to 50 percent sure who the leader is!
Behind The Scenes
“You guys drink all THAT last night?” (and I knew that it wasn’t filled with gatorade before, but something much stronger… knew that all along).
Well I finally got them moving about and cleaning up the camp and preparing for the day’s shoots. One of the hired hands has some fun waking up former child actor Tommy “The Scream” Benerson here. This moment seemed to lighten the mood.
A literal army of crewmen build the circular dolly ramp that unfortunately couldn’t be used today. Maybe tomorrow or next week, but at least it’s set up now.
George Jetson and Huckleberry Hound confer with dogfight expert Snoopy of Charlie Brown fame about the logistics of animated air battle. Unfortunately, this scene had to be cut from the shooting script today as well.
Similarly, one of the stars of our production, T-Bonz, consults with Captain Crunch regarding the inherent difficulties of working with child actors, which the naval officer has considerable experience with. That’s why we hired him to direct our crew, he he.
While the Mmmmmm’s aren’t technically children, their behavior and demeanor are comparable.
Speaking of which, here’s most of the Mmmmmm’s from our cast attempting to rouse the still sleeping Mossman. A sound snoozer this he-man is! Admittedly I’m afraid/wary of this cast member more than any other.
His short day of advising done, Snoopy enjoys some sunbathing atop his doghouse, which he always takes along on out-of-town job assignments.
The camp in relationship to the goodmoblie prop that T-Bonz and his 3 Mmmmmms landed here in the production several days ago. I’m guessing that its condition can’t be worsened by sitting out in one or two more rains!
Now to the shoot!
Jonesborough East: Prelude To “The Parties Unite”
Safely off the bridge across (Tile) Creek now and in Jonesborough East, as I’m calling it, T-Bonz and his Mmmmmm’s scamper down the root system of the overturned tree to the open area below the long rock wall discussed before, which runs all along the east side of the “burg”. Coops, Berry or Cherry make boo boo climbing down!
A view toward the top of the Wall. No way to access the top from here.
“Is this the cave?” Cherry or Berry stupidly asks his Master T-Bonz, pointing to the relatively tiny hole above his head while walking toward the south end of the wall.
Only 30 minutes later, after they finished exploring the south and move past the roots again to the north, does T-Bonz dare to speak in his anger. “THERE,” he then emits like a volcano spewing forth molten lava. “THAT’S the cave you red stained dummy!” He growls again, and then tells all the Mmmmmm’s to stay on this rock and DON’T MOVE… or else. “Where are you going Master T-Bonz?” the red Mmmmmm’s ask innocently and innoculously in their child-like voices. But Verdy, the lone green Mmmmmm of their group, already knew the answer. “Never mind where I’m going, just STAY PUT,” he commands in no uncertain terms again. “ON-THIS-ROCK.”
T-Bonz then moves toward a rhododendron tree that, when climbed, will give him access to the rock ledge that his destination sits upon: the white rock jut discussed in former (Tile) CREEK related posts on this blog just before production began.
“Ahhhh, there it is. The legendary White Rock,” he coos. “Sing to me dearest, now. Sing to me the mysteries of this place. Sing to me the knowledge I seek and have come for, with these imbeciles in tow — subtracting Verdy a bit, because I actually like Verdy a little, you see. But the others — well, never mind that now. I am here with you and that’s all that’s important. Speak to me; sing to me if you wish but at least speak.”
And the rock obeyed and began to sing…
… making T-Bonz fall instantly asleep, which Verdy foresaw.
“Now’s my chance Cherry and Berry,” Verdy said to them with a wink, moving toward the cave and inside. “Wait, Master T-Bonz said stay put!” they implored. But it was too late. Verdy was consumed by the darkness.
Interviewer (Toy Avatar Weekly):
We’re here with Grassy Noll, star of the new toy avatar production The Adventures of Salad Bar Jack in the River of TILE. Tell us how you got involved in this production Grassy, and how you won the coveted role of Salad Bar Jack? And how you approach this character?
They were looking for either a one armed actor or one whose arm came naturally out of joint so they could pin it behind his back. I fit one of the two categories (laughs).
You are a Mmmmmm in real life as well.
Yeah, hard to hide that fact (laughs).
What are your inspirations to play the character, or how would you define your philosophy of acting as applied to this particular role?
You take it day to day. I may act tomorrow and I may not. If I don’t I’m drinking (smiles).
Seriously, I will add there’s a special quality about this production, and it has to do with the actual river that the whole story revolves around.
The River of TILE?
It talks to us at night, even through the drunkenness. Something has happened in the camp that’s pretty odd. We left the recorders on by accident, or so they say, the second night we were in the woods. Something was picked up.
No, seriously. The Scream (actor Tommy Benerson) said he heard it in reality, but no one took him super serial until we listened to the playback. It was a hum, a humming I should say.
Back to your inspiration for the role.
Grassy (ignoring request):
It was humming the Alphabet Song. No words — or letters in this case — but just the humming part, the tones. That’s what we recognized.
Jonesborough East: The Parties Unite + The Appearance
Mossman was enjoying an afternoon nap on the mossy cliffs above the cave and the White Rock when he was roused by the singing. In his several days in the area, he had never heard the rock “sing” before so he didn’t know what to make of it at first — couldn’t tell what direction it was coming from. Finally he was able to get a bead on the source and came upon the the still sleeping T-Bonz.
“Wake up sleepy head,” exclaimed the moss creature in a ferocious but not-as-ferocious-as-you-would-imagine voice. “What did you do?” asked Mossman to the stirring T-Bonz, pointing to the white rock jut. “What is that humming or singing and why is it coming from that rock? Why are you here?”
All legitimate questions, of course, but when T-Bonz came out of his fuzzy headedness and looked around, he was more concerned about there being only *two* Mmmmmm’s on the rock below, and not the three he left there. “WHERE’S VERDI IMBECILES???” he roared to the remaining Mmmmmm’s Cherry and Berry below, who began to quake upon seeing their master up and about again.
“How dare you speak to an Mmmmmm in that tone?” the surprised Mossman then exclaimed, not as a reproving remark but just one of disbelief. “Why?” T-Bonz asked gruffly, turning back to the moss man. “How do you treat them? Like princes and princesses?”
“I treat them with the honor that elders should be treated, although I am not familiar with the dealings of the red strain of that species. I know the orange ones command much respect. You appear to be the master of those, but Lodi, the orange one I travel here with from, as for now, unnamed dimensions, is more my master than I his, although he wouldn’t put it that way.
“Well that’s just plain stupid,” T-Bonz retorts. “They’re just little pieces of plastic candy.”
“Are we not plastic as well?” responded Mossman thoughtfully in that loud but not-too-loud voice.
“We’re different,” T-Bonz says. “*I’m* different anyway. We are shaped like the man of the outer world. They are not.”
“Just because they are natives of the inner world and are more distant to the shapes and forms of the exterior does not make them necessarily inferior to us, um, what did you say your name was stranger?”
“I didn’t,” T-Bonz replied. “But since you’re asking it’s T-Bonz. But I haven’t got all day to stand up here yammering about philosophy of up and down and sideways and whatnot. I gotta find that stray Mmmmmm.”
“Yes, like you T-Bonz, I do not know the whereabouts of my companion Mmmmmm, one in my case. He disappeared inside that cave your red Mmmmmm’s stand on the edge of and hasn’t returned yet, although he promised he would as soon as he could. He said something about a, um, what was it? Portal. Yes, the cave is a portal. It is called The Cave of The Alphabet, he said. Have you heard of it? Is this by chance why you are here, to also deal with this portal, whatever it is?”
“Damn you ask a lot of questions green man,” replied T-Bonz in his gruff way. He turned and jumped down from the ledge, going up to the shaking red Mmmmmm’s and demanding simply, in about as loud a voice as he could muster: “WHERE?!?”
It took all of Cherry and Berry’s balance just to remain upright, so frightened they were, but one of them managed to point toward the cave. T-Bonz understood, then.
He stomped toward the mouth of the cave but then turned back to Mossman who had followed him off the cliff. “You don’t suppose, mossy man, that they’re in there TOGETHER??? (pause). What sex did you say your little orange buddy was?”
“Male, I think,” replied Mossman. “What’s yours?”
“I dunno… female I suppose.”
But before they could follow this train of thought further to its possible, logical conclusion, Cherry and Berry were excitedly calling them back to the rock they had remained on all this time. “We found her, we found her. Verdy is here!” they shouted, waving to Mossman and T-Bonz at the mouth of the cave. “Well, at least MY problem is taken care of,” exclaimed T-Bonz, actually happy to see Verdy in the distance. “Stupid things must have just imagined she went into the cave or sumtin.”
But when T-Bonz and Mossman went back to the rock, they found a green Mmmmmm who T-Bonz definitely knew was not Verdi. Like T-Bonz, he only had one arm, while Verdy most assuredly had two.
“Who are you?” demanded T-Bonz in an unflattering voice.
“My name is Salad Bar Jack,” came the response. “And I am the last of the green Mmmmmm’s.”