The Konformist

January 2002

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Part III


Jaye C. Beldo



*Please note: The McHajj series you are about to read came to me directly via a series of disturbing dreams, dreams which continue to haunt me at present. These dreams, more like interminable nightmares, have resulted from life long exposure to advertising in the relentlessly predatory, capitalistic society that I'm haphazardly posited in. In order to deal with the severe psychological trauma such exposure has caused me, I have translated what my unconscious mind has directly conveyed to me into the story below. It is the only way I know how to cope with the constant trespassing into my psyche by the corporate powers which loom about in a most menacing and merciless fashion. Thank you for understanding my dilemma. BTW: I am currently starting a twelve step support group for those who may believe that they are victims of a similar kind of corporate psychological terrorism. I will provide more information in the near future...if there is one. Thank you!


The Pope gaped at the fuzzy icons hovering near his bedside. Were they angels? Reporters? Eager Cardinals insinuating heirdom? He closed his eyes once again. But when he whiffed the Chanel and heard the familiar burger chuckle, he offered up his hand, marbled with swollen veins and weakly gestured towards a water bowl on a table next to him. He motioned for the couple to genuflect. He dipped his fingers into the bowl and sprinkled their heads.

"I pronounce you husband and wife."

His debility allowed no more. With a weak wave of his hand, he transferred the remaining formalities to the Cardinals who gathered around the couple. Mr. Paul hadn't done a wedding since his moonlight job at I.G. Farben back in the thirties, when his Deutscheland comrades jibingly monikered him 'Quick Karol'. Deprived, he fell back into his pillow and even further, into a beatific, anesthetized daze, that neither of the newlyweds could fathom.

"Enough stress for one day." warned a doctor who entered the room as the tints of life faded from the Pope's visage. A wind sidled its way from the court yard below into the room and ruffled the groom's wig, as sensitive as a theophanic barometer. The bride took off her chador, looked for someone idle, distracted enough to interview. ABC would want something prime time enough to run back home. Maybe even milk it for a series.

"Our union may be his last communion." Barbara proclaimed solemnly to the cameras and beckoned for a close up. Ronald behind her waved and then mouthed, "Hi Mom."

But there was still pulse left in the Pope.

The Marlboro Men , Joe Camel , Palmolive Madge, the Pillsbury Doughboy, Reddy Kilowatt and the Tidy Bowl Man managed to get into the room upon hearing the Good News. The Pope came to for a moment and nodded. Joe Camel flicked a butt into the Baptismal bedpan and placed his hand on the Pope's forehead. The doctor leered at the reprobate Bactrian ungulate. He wondered if that camel had enough sisu to make it back to Bethlehem after he got done with him.

Not much time and a millennium spent without any unfolding of Papal revelation. Time for another counter reformation? No, no more Luthers to contest. So invisible, so blended in with the corporate architecture they are. No Hapsburgian Vectors to carry out orders from Rome. Not even a Jesuit at large to boot. Not like in the good ol' days of the Thirty Years War. No locust, no floods of blood, nothing from the Patmos camp either. Only vapid promises of holographic wish fulfillment dished out by NASA PR and HAARP. And that beast that equaled eighteen, no matter how you added it up? He was a no show as well. Only the icons. No back up generators had been aptly ordained to keep the stage lights going in case of global brown out.

They had no choice. They had to keep PJP II alive. Barbara worried about John's diminishing telepresence and pressured the doctor to operate. At least plastic surgery for they had no foundation to apply.

The doctor quickened to the maculate pall, the obvious onset of Parkinson's disease. But he began to muse. Why were there only pathologies named after baseball players and celebrities? Not one single religious figure had a disease named after him or her. The Doc could fake it, revise the etiology a little and dub it "Paulitis" and get a Noble Prize for curing it on the very day of diseases's world premiere. He eyed Ronald McDonald. Doc could read a blood type like a poker bluff. Just by the skin, even if it was covered with greasepaint. Ronald grasped the portent, telepathic aptitude heightened by the demands of the Hajj. He felt compelled to Jingle.

"You deserve a break today." He twittered into the Pope's ear. The Pope smiled as if receiving benediction from Number One.

The clown chuckled, rolled up his puffy sleeve. A nurse polished up his carotid artery with sanctified antiseptic and inserted the catheter. Barbara saw the transgression and began whispering, "Malpractice" over and over and her eyes brightened up a bit. She reached for her wireless. But the Pope immediately came to when Ronald's plasm hit his system. His eyes lit up like a pair of Golden Arches over a midnight parking lot. The veins and arteries snapped to attention, graciously receiving the fresh influx. Lymphatics sparked along with the neurons and axons and dendrites-the mossed neurology of an apocryphal avatar destined for immortality, He was fired up for another thousand years of the Reich-o-Rama. The infusion brought him to an upright position in the bed. Barbara thrust a microphone towards his lips.

Yet it was not enough. No one, except Ronald himself, knew it was cow's blood they'd been pumping into Ol' Karol, the Zyklon B colporteur.

The Pope faded back into the eternal folds of the bed. The pall returned. He began a coughing jag. He vomited up some hallowed, citrine pus from the pulmonary Rome housed in his rib cage. The doctor turned to the Marlboro Men.

"All for the want of a lung?"

One of the cowboys offered his tar sodden lung to keep the Pope alive. Surgery only took an hour. Yet it was not enough.

"Any volunteers for a liver transplant?"

Yes, one of the icons, Captain Morgan, the Rum Pirate offered his organ of life to keep the Pope going. Yet it was not enough.

"Any volunteers for a heart transplant?"

Joe Camel, a brave bactrian of integrity, sacrificed his pith to keep the Pope alive. John, Jerry and Jack Camel survived their famous brother and carried on with the good work to the delight of Philip-Morris. "See...See.." The tobacco magnates screamed as they watched the proceeding from their Virginia Headquarters, "There is such a thing as altruism!"

Palmolive Madge sacrificed her bone marrow. The Tidy Bowl man sacrificed his digestive tract and colon. The Pillsbury Doughboy had nothing humanly feasible to sacrifice but was there at the bedside, reassuring the Pope that he would rise again. During the revivification, the Papal henchmen , disappointed, worked their way out of the inner circle. The Pope was alive...would stay alive...forever...for there would be no shortage of organ donors. 1-800 numbers would flash and scroll at the bottom of every T,V, show like storm warnings. Blurbs on milk cartons and the back of trucks would beckon for donors to meet the insatiable need of fresh organs for our Pope. No wonder he threw sanctified fertility pills to the Third World. The black market would be glutted with organ donors! The Pope's immortality would generate more media revenue than any celebrity event in history.

Somewhere a lone Turkish gunman slouches towards a Bethlehem carved into a prison wall with his fingernails.

After remission, Pope John Paul Infinity, the Chiliastronaut of the 21st century, was deemed fit enough for the next shuttle mission. For the Newlyweds, a Honeymoon in space? Yes.

Geosynchronous orbit in a space station. The threesome would watch the apocalypse on earth through Pince Nez ,Opera Glasses and Zero Gravity champagne bubbles. And then off to the Pleiades to convert the aliens?


to be continued

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Kirby The Konspiracy Boy Says, "I NEED 2 KONFORM!!!"