THE CUTTERS LOUNGE “The Treasure of Heather Meadows”



“The Treasure of Heather Meadows”

        We all had been invited to The Katman’s Cutters Lounge cigar bar to share in some particular surprise of his.  The Katman had said cryptically that it “will make men of us all”.

We sit in leather chairs in the alcove named The Glorious Forge of Men.  The Katman’s daughter Katie serves the ceremonial Clynelish 20-year old Scotch to Michael, Rick, David, and me.

        Michael asks Katie slyly, “So, what’s your dad’s big secret tonight?  Do you know what ‘will make men of us all’?”

        Katie does her best Mona Lisa, answering him, “The right woman.”

        David laughs, “Michael, you sure pitch them for her to hit.”

        Katie looks at all of us and says, “Most guys can’t recognize the right woman.”

        Rick asks politely, “So, is the right woman coming?”

        Katie says, “You’ll probably never know.”

        Michael leers and says, “Oh, if she’s mine she’ll be coming alright.”

        Katie walks away scratching her ass at Michael, saying to him over her shoulder, “Won’t your hand be jealous?”

        Dave slaps Michael’s arm and laughs, “What did I just tell you?”

        The curtains part to the nearby private-meeting alcove named Last Prison of the Gods.  The Katman emerges and beckons to us, saying, “Come, enter, my little menschkins.”

        We arise as one.  I bow.  Rick curtsies.  Michael salutes smartly.  David flings his right arm out with a “Heil, mein Meister”.  As we begin to file into The Last Prison of the Gods, The Katman hands to each of us a cigar that he has recently reviewed.

        The Katman pronounces, “For you, Michael, The Hammer + Sickle Moscow City Series.  For you, Ricky, the Alec Bradley Overture.  For you, Dave, the Perdomo Habano Corojo.  And for you, Skippy, a Viaje Cache.”

        In the dimly lit alcove there are five leather chairs place around a shrouded object the size and shape of a hospital bed.

        Michael asks, “Who are you now?  Dr. Katman von Frankenstein?”

        The Katman chuckles, “That’s Franken-shteen, Igor.”

        Dave speaks up, saying, “This is a little creepy.  Are we all getting colonoscopies?”

        Michael says, “You wish, pretty boy.”

        Dave then lunges for Michael’s crotch with his hand held like a beak and shouts, “Parrot attack!  RrrAWK!”

        Michael jumps backwards, yelping involuntarily, “RrrAWK!  Quit it!”

        Rick shakes his head, grinning, “Decorum, gentlemen.  Decorum.”

        Dave says, “This is Dick-orum!” and he feigns to lunge at Michael again, who casts a façade of stern warning for Dave.

        The Katman says, “Gentlemen, man your chairs and light your engines.  Focus, please.  You all are going to help me tonight,” and with that The Katman removes the shroud from the mysterious object before us to reveal a good-sized computer processing unit and five cyber-helmets with five cyber-gloves attached.

        Michael asks, “What kind of a circle jerk is this?”

        The Katman smiles and answers, “An oddly ironic assessment, Michael.”

        I said, “Hey, I don’t want any part of any 3-D cyber porn orgy.”

        The Katman tisks at me and says, “You are all going to help me design the perfect woman.”

        Rick asks, “Does God know about this?”

        Dave says, “I think God needs help after Eve.”

        I laugh, “Does anyone else hear thunder?”

        The Katman continues unfazed, “You are all going to help me design the perfect virtual-hostess for my website Cigar Reviews by the Katman.  This is the hardware and the software to make it happen.”

        Rick parodies the catch-phrase from The Six Million Dollar Man, saying, “Gentlemen, we can build her…we have the technology.”

        Dave asks, “Where did you get this?”

        The Katman will only say, “It is available.”

        Michael has already put on his black cyber-helmet that covers the eyes and he says predictably, in his best Darth Vader, “Dave, I am your father.”

        Dave says, “I knew you were a mother-fucker.”

        Michael adds, “Doing your mom since 2011.”

        I finally say, “Guys, come on.  Don’t you want to invent the perfect woman?”

        Michael asks, “Would she be obedient?”

        The Katman laughs, saying, “We don’t have that much computing power here.”

        I ask, “Can she be silent?”

        The Katman says, “Again, computing power…”

        Rick asks, “What if she didn’t have a head?”

        We all have a quick and earnest discussion wherein we all agree that we all want the head.

        The Katman says, “Gentlemensch, put on the cyber-helmet and cyber-glove that is nearest to you.  The cyber-glove will select and execute options presented in your cyber-helmet visor screens.”

        Upon donning our apparatuses we all exhale, “Whoa.”

        Rick exclaims, “I’m in The Matrix!”

        The Katman says, “Gentlemensch, select your avatar so that you may see one another.”

        Michael calls out, “I’m Gandalf the Wizard!”

        Rick says, “I’m Elvis.”

        Dave wonders, “Am I Hitler or Jesus?”

        I say, “I’ll be Shakespeare.”

        The Katman urges Dave, saying, “Choose, Dave.”

        Dave ponders, “Hitler, Jesus, Hitler, Jesus…”

        The Katman quotes Aristotle, saying, “Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.

        Michael says in exasperation, “Hey, Dave, why don’t you just be Aristotle?  I think he liked little boys too.”

        Dave quotes, “Fear is pain arising from the anticipation of evil,” and he then leans toward Michael and shrieks, “RrrAWK!”

        Michael pulls off his helmet, yelping involuntarily, “RrrAWK!  Fucker.”

        The Katman’s eyes glow red with the tip of his cigar as he admonishes, “The gods too are fond of a joke, but we have work before us, menschkins.”

        Michael scowls, “Work?  Are we being paid?”

        The Katman has the final word, saying, “All paid jobs absorb and degrade the mind.”

        And so, inside The Final Prison of the Gods we face each other as our chosen avatars within that cyberworld.  A luminous undulating energy appears between us.  It is mesmerizing.  It strikes me as feminine.

        Elvis says, “Wait.  Where are you, Katman?”

        The Katman speaks, “I am the ghost in the machine.  I will start first.  Her first character as the hostess of my website must be that she likes cigars.”

        Shakespeare says, “Wait.  She needs a name.”

        Gandalf the Wizard blurts, “Nicotina.”

        Aristotle scowls, “Naw.  Tabbaca.”

        Elvis offers, “Rola? Thank yuh, thank yuh very much.”

        Shakespeare whispers, “Heather Meadows.”

        Aristotle asks, “Where did ‘Heather Meadows’ come from?  It’s nice but you’ve obviously been thinking about that name.”

        Shakespeare nods, “I knew a ‘Heather’ in high school.  She was cool.  I thought of the name Heather Meadows for a poem but I have only the notion so far.”

        Gandalf the Wizard says, “Good enough.  What about her body?”

        The Katman ratifies, “Heather Meadows will work.  For now.”

        Elvis says, “Let’s make her Asian.”

        Gandalf the Wizard adds, “With red hair!”

        Aristotle protests, “She’s not hosting an escort service!”

        The Katman agrees, adding, “Let’s save that one for a future investment.”

        Gandalf the Wizard pleads, “Not too future.”

        Shakespeare says, “Heather Meadows has soft blond hair.  Short but wavy.”

        Gandalf the Wizard asks, “Have you got a thing for Shirley Temple?”

        Aristotle asks rhetorically, “Who doesn’t?”

        Gandalf the Wizard says, “Let’s ask your pretty-boy students.”

        And then the face of the luminous hypnotically undulating feminine entity begins to come more into focus.

        Gandalf the Wizard begs, “The body. Now the body, OK?”

        Aristotle says, “I saw this German girl, I think her name is Micaela Shafer, she was taking The Naked Ice-Bucket Challenge.  Her body, I am sure, will be adequate for any of us.”

        The Katman agrees, saying, “I book-marked that video myself.”

        And then the body of the luminous hypnotically undulating seductive feminine entity begins to come more into focus.

        Elvis says, “She’s the hostess of a sophisticated website.  Her ‘Landing Strip’ is nice but I think she needs clothes.”

        Gandalf the Wizard says, “A curse on you, Elvis!”

        Aristotle responds, “Don’t be cruel.  Elvis is right.”

        Gandalf the Wizard says, “A pox on you, Aristotle!”

        The Katman is heard saying, “She will be robed in her honor due.  So let it be coded, so let it be done.”

        And then the body of the luminous hypnotically undulating feminine entity is clothed in a short black sleeveless dress.

        The nascent Heather Meadows looks around at all of us and blinks and says, “Hello, boys.”

        She has the most mellifluous intimate voice as if she is whispering in our ears.

        The Katman is heard saying to us, “You’re all welcome, menschkins, and thank you for your input.  And, of course, welcome to you, Heather Meadows.”

        Gandalf the Wizard, Aristotle, Elvis, and Shakespeare all speak at once, entranced, “HiHelloYoHey, Heathereatheratherther.”

        The Katman is heard to say, “Heather, I think you will be the perfect hostess for guys like these.”

        Then Heather Meadows astonishes us all by showing independent intelligence, asking, “What about the women?”

        Gandalf the Wizard trembles, “Ooh, ooh, can we make you lesbian?”

        Heather Meadows says, “I was talking about a male host for the women.”

        Gandalf the Wizard becomes annoyed at our creation and asks sarcastically, “How many cigar-smoking women can there be?”

        We all suddenly sense The Katman as a fluctuation in the pixels.  Yet he remains silent and he lets hostess Heather Meadows enlighten us, as she iterates, “Jennifer Lopez, Jodie Foster, Jessica Simpson, Sandra Bullock, Ivana Trump, Demi Moore, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Sharon Stone, Britney Spears, Tyra Banks, Brooke Shields, Jennifer Aniston…”

        Gandalf the Wizard interrupts, “Alright, alright.  How about me as the male host?”

        Heather Meadows replies, “Your wand leaves much to be desired.”

        We laugh as Gandalf the Wizard cries out to the matrix, “Katman, you are making her say that!”

        The Katman is heard to say, “No, I am not.  Heather is working off of heuristic code now.  It is like free will and we can’t alter the code without termination.”

        Elvis asks amazed, “A real woman?  You can’t change her without, without killing her?”

        Heather Meadows says to Elvis, “I think that is so.  However, the right woman can alter your code, my dear.  That is what makes her the right woman.”

        Gandalf the Wizard protests, saying, “I’ve been with women who obliterated my code.”

        Heather Meadows replies, “I am afraid that those women were only compiling your routines.”

        Aristotle finally speaks, saying, “The more you know, the more you know you don’t know.”

        Gandalf the Wizard scoffs, “Thanks for nothing.”

        Aristotle grins, “I know.”

        Shakespeare suddenly looks apprehensive and says, “We should take off our, our… helmets.”

        The Katman is heard to say, “What helmets?”

        Gandalf the Wizard says defiantly, “I remember a helmet, something about a helmet!”

        Aristotle asks, “Why do we need helmets?  Are we at war?”

        Elvis asks, “Helmet?  War?  Am I drafted?”

        The Katman is heard to laugh heartily, “Ask Heather Meadows.”

        Gandalf the Wizard, Aristotle, Elvis, and Shakespeare all speak at once, asking Heather Meadows, “What what what what is does the The Katman he happening he mean saying fuck?!”

        Heather Meadows laughs and says with luminous hypnotically undulating seductive femininity, “I release you.”

        At once Gandalf the Wizard, Aristotle, Elvis, and Shakespeare come to with a series of shudders.

        Gandalf the Wizard yells to the matrix, “You hypnotized us!”

        The pixels blur as The Katman must be shuddering with silent laughter.

        Shakespeare observes, “None of us has removed our cyber helmets yet.”

        Aristotle whispers to Shakespeare, “Hold on to your helmet tightly.”

        Heather Meadows whispers, “Thank you all for coming.  For making me.”



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But, the most ancient scrolls are kept on: THE TABLE OF MALCONTENTS


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