Landscape Turned Red for $500

In which Lawyer reveals the true nature of the Späten Song unto Everyman
even as he tries to remember where he put it.

"Your honor, let the record show that on the night in question, right at the 3rd period buzzer, Blake spanked one in from the crease, sending the crowd into an uproar and me into the arms of an ample-bosomed Arcadia woman who shall, henceforth, be referred to as 'Lulu'.'"

"Your point?" asked the judge, bristling slightly.

"My point?" retorted Lawyer. "Did I not say 'henceforth'?"

"Yes. Yes you did indeed. What is the relevancy to this case?" further bristled the judge.

"Well how else do you tell time?" said Lawyer giving a little "ba DUM bum!" and dance to boot. "Yuh see, 'cause... 'cause I was trying to establish the time of the exchange... heh... yuh see."

The jury that Lawyer was attempting to humor stared blankly. Juror 8 yawned and disinterestedly extended her middle finger in Lawyer's direction. Lawyer responded in kind, but realizing his faux pas, quickly extended the remaining four fingers and began fanning himself.

"It sho is steamy in this here co'troom. D'yall mind if remove my wrap?" purred Lawyer realizing that he probably would've been better off not only flipping the bird as originally scheduled, but actually verbalizing the subtext. Now he was sweating profusely and deep in the middle of a Blanche DuBois that even Clarence Darrow couldn't have reversed gears from. Lawyer sallied towards his notes, snatched them up and summoning all the energy that Blanche's repressed sexuality had to offer, he cooed "Now hows about my big, strong Honor allows me to introduce the following exchange into evidence seeing as its not only relevant to these li'l ol' proceedings, but jurisprudentially irresponsible if y'all don't, honey pie."

The judge blushed and squirmed in his robes. "Err, yes, yes of course. Please proceed, couselor... err ma'am."

"Gotcha," mumbled Lawyer under his breath as he swung around and daintily flagged his hanky at #8 who was now wide awake and in a visible huff.

Lawyer sashayed over to the bailiff and handed him a few sheets of scented yellow legal pad paper. After a near-scuffle, he forfeited them to the judge.

Lawyer ripped off an arena-volume whistle and announced, "I enter the following exchange as Defense Exhibit Uh-huh."

Shap: I sure could go for some cottonseed right about now.
Harley: Shut up and deal.
Shap: You've never liked me, have you Har?
Harley: You remind me of Mentos, that's all.
Shap: The candy? Or the Mexican gardner who killed your Hibiscus?
Harley: Shut up and deal.
Shap: I think I'm Harry Truman's lovechild.
Harley: I should never have saved you in Kuwait.
Shap: I can't feel my toes.
Harley: Shut up and deal.
[The curtain comes down on the author's head.]

As Lawyer began applauding during the curtain call, his cell phone clucked like the wily chicken.

"Yyyyello!" barked Lawyer.

"Are card-carrying artist-types allowed to brandish cutlery with injurious intent?" breathed Everyman, "Because if they are, I'm forked!" giving a little "ba DUM bum!" however the dance to boot was obscured by the sound of splashing.

"I trust that your not knee-deep in your own blood. You're wearing my Nunn and Bushes!" screamed Lawyer over the hooting of the gallery.

"Nah, nah, I escaped by wading through the lake," wheezed a clearly winded Everyman, "but I ran out of there swinging, the money-grubbing Commies!"

"Hey, listen, the house lights are just about to come up here and I've got some hearts to break, but before you throw yourself into the arms of a fate worse than repeat viewings of 'Ice Castles', I think I've found the answer to our troubles, compadre. I have come into the knowledge of a tune, but no ordinary tune is this. It's a doozy, I tell ya, a ringer. They call her 'the Späten Song' and she's a real firecracker!" said Lawyer, forgetting to breathe and blacking out momentarily.

"Not another word. You're getting my dander up. I can't talk here; I'm sitting on some guy's Cobb salad. Meet me in 10 minutes at the Rue l'Engina. Ask for Monty Hall unless he's working the door. Then ask for Senator Laura Ingalls Acid Rain and Lavenderia Wilder (Jabon Gratis). Späten Song, eh? Sounds like a spicy meatball, mon frere. Gotta go. My fresh melon plate is ready. Salud!"

After the courtroom fanfare had stopped and the jurors were prepared for the semi-finals of their Barrel of Monkeys tournament, Lawyer lept onto the table and shouted, "Can you dig me, MC Honor? I'm busting a move for dismissal!"

The judge, who was pages away from finishing A Stranger In The Mirror (not realizing that the story of a comedian and a film actress who share a passionate and ruthless love in a story of stunning suspense and steamy emotions, had already been written, and masterfully, by Sidney Sheldon) pounded absently with his gavel and proclaimed, rather contrary to the established rules of criminal proceedings, "It's all over, kiddies!"


The main idea of this story is

The criminal justice system is unfairly biased toward white, male, 30-something,
     Southern belles.
Everyman can cram his size 12 foot into Lawyer's size 9 shoe and still sit
     comfortably on somebody's entrée.
Heterosexual men can make a references to Tenessee Williams, Ice Castles
     and Sidney Sheldon in the course of one chapter and still be a considered
     "non-fruity" as long as they also make at least one reference to busty
     women in the same chapter.

A judge is someone who

Wears a robe, listens to people's problems and gets fat on graft
     and political favors.
Breeds, trains and performs with dogs in carnivals and street fairs
     and is sworn to uphold the law.
Is easily distracted by brightly colored objects and likes chewy candy.


Everyman recklessly mangles the English language. Speak to your friends using high-falooting jibberish. Do they look at you puzzled? Do they beat you with rocks? Describe your favorite hiding place. Is there enough room for a husky fella?

The Späten Song: Chapter 2