How to find your way at Joy Motel

To READ Joy Motel from the beginning
then follow the link at the bottom of each chapter.

To JUMP to any chapter,
use the list of chapter titles in the panel on the right side of every page.

Or use the SEARCH box after each chapter to find what you're looking for.

30 J-O-Y-M-O-T-E-L

Iceberg memories. Bright blue sunshades. Watching kids play basketball. Good-natured yelling. I realize that I am recognized, I just know.

Tinfoil hat time. Still at the BB game. Or is it BBs and skeet shooting? Sleet when no one is looking? This is me when the drugs kick in.

But I've been clean for three reality shifts now. Took the cure back in Room 77, the sweat room, psychDad photos on every wall, plastered.

How long had I been searching for Calumet even after I thought he was dead? Why wouldn't I have gone after Mantell or Degnan, next to go?

The river Calumet drowned in has dried up, his remains long since drifted in the AC/DC air-conditioned diagonal curvature, current carried.

Into the lake, begone! No more current in the river's West Branch, unless it rained or more likely a hobo pisses like a banshee, wailing.

Bubbly Creek, the South Branch, is still there. Ghosts of slaughtered stockyard cattle and stocky slackers, grocery store baggers, selective

this city can be, it will rain in dissections. There is a subdivision where the West Branch watered, now nothing but sunshine over riches.

And I'm stuck in Joy Motel. When did I start my last manuscript and more importantly, what was it about? A mnemonic memoir, sci-fi HI-FI?

State of the art computer repairs? A cookbook to serve man (wrong-o, liabilities ensue!). Kindred at Earth Online dot c'mon you know, why?

It all makes sense at times, if I let the morphing drip begin and the revels halt: SCI-FI RECORDS in the 70s, the parrot a parakeet, tweet.

Forget Mantell, I contemplate for three days. I can leave here because I'm special. Degnan is on the border & ultimately out of luck. Tweet!

Its 1 in the morning, 20 degrees below zero, Venus has gone past the horizon, the church steeple on the corner is not lit. And so I set out.

I crawl across a white landscape pebbled with black lines, curved and straight, clumped in clusters with spaces between, windtunnelempty.

My fingers are turning black, not from cold or gangrene. But what? They smell pungent. Tin? Lead? Ink? I pause and look back, squintpanting.

Barren as an ice floe, Antarctic blindwhiteout. I stab my blade into the surface, testing. It rips a neat hole with tattered edges. Paper?

I'm on a piece of paper covered with text. It stretches to the horizon on all sides. I wander until I find a curve I recognize. Sweeping J.

It takes ten minutes to walk from the top of the J down the main shaft and around the curl to the tip. Several yards away, thick black line.

Exploring. It's an O. J-O. I spend the rest of the morning tracing out letters. J-O-Y-M-O-T-E-L. And a plain of smaller letters tumbling.

I appear to be on a manuscript. Am I the protagonist? Am I the villain? Am I the author? Am I in the Joy Motel? Or a novel called Joy Motel?


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