Some time in October, Chad Coles packed his vacation belongings in an old canvas grip his mother gave him when he went off to study plant science at Tupelo U in 1963. No one in the offices took much notice. In fact, no one was in the office. Everyone was at work. Chad left a note not even the Administrator scanned because it resembled a utility meter reading. That stuff is Chad's business and no one here messes with it.
After ten days or so the customary call from the Mechanicsville, Alabama crossroads [where you can still find a pay phone that accepts Confederate coinage, according to local lore, and real fried pork rinds] came to the offices through Skype. C. Penbroke Handy was in-house working on a prototype sketch for "Giant Ass Clown," a comic that was supposed to be sent off to illustrator Belinda Cho for finalization last summer. The computer happened to be on, possibly because the cat had walked across the keyboard while it was set to sleep. Handy says Chad was in a big sweat: "I diddit, I diddit. Didda did-diddit!"
Chad is only so high and Handy only saw the top of his straw boater.
"Did what?" Handy asked.
Chad said: "I wrought the whole thang in two weeks. I dayid. I dayid."
Chad lapses back into the soft drawl of his bolo tie-wearing days at Tupelo where he invented NAUGHTGROW something that would've made him a fortune but that's all in the past now. Long and short of it was Chad wrote a book. The title is called "There Is No Voice."
It's a complicated book and his editor, Diamond Fells-Naptha, took most of the middle part out so there's only a beginning and an ending. Still, it ran to 139 pages. The story gets complex because it is based on one of Chad's arguments that there is no such things as a "voice inside our heads." If there was, he says, other people would hear it. He also doesn't believe in tinnitus for the same reason.
However, Handy's wife has tinnitus and he says the high pitched whine and roaring, rushing sounds coming out of her left ear forced him to start smoking out on the back porch -- which is screened in, in case you wanted to know.
"Keeps the secondhand smoke from getting stolen," says Handy.
Now, Chad is one of the smartest people we've ever been acquainted with, especially given he is only seven inches tall and is made of plastics. There's no accounting for Mother Nature ... The plain and simple fact is he's a genius. You try getting an advanced degree in plant pathology, develop 1,500 patents for making things not happen (we can thank Chad for a lot of stuff that hasn't happened and there's a list in his book, one of the few parts in English, because most of it's ideograms that none of us can decipher -- yet. But we're onto it).
We know it's tribal and Chad may be the last one in his tribe so maybe only he knows it and will explain it when he gets back from Broomestown, where he is meeting with a team from an Italian publishing company; apparently there's already a bidding war with the Germans.
Jason Forrest Plaidsport, renowned cryptographer, says the entire work is a spherical song, curved and disappearing over the horizon of sense into another dimension that is in fact voiceless, and impossible for any of us to read because we all think we have a voice in our heads and we can't "hear the book" because of this voice.
The whole of it may be ethereal song or chant. "But it's an invisible, inaudible bit of dark matter," JP said. He was calling long distance from Dubai, his time, and we're not sure if that's exactly what he told us and without Chad here, we forgot to put the SD card in the recorder, so, Bob's your uncle on that one.
To frustrate things, this Diamond Fells-Naptha, a former friend of the highly cultured belles and lettres set where Coles (not his real name, turns out) is from, decided to edit the book and took what he claims "were just a bunch of plain empty pages, like a blank book" out. Coles is suing him over this "mendacious performance of a so-called family friend" and, in a separate writ, suing over the fact that DFN claims to have ghost-written the book.
How Fells-Naptha has time to harass Chad while he's trying to bully his plans for a Panamax Container Ship Canal from Yuma to the Sea of Cortez and vice versa through the Arizona State legislature without consulting either the federal government of the U.S. or Mexico ("Hell, it's all private funded, we don't need big gummint," he says) is a story that's just too big for us. Still, we want to get Chad back here okay and see that what's left of his book is at least written in ways we can try to understand why we can't understand it ...
This is a chore, especially with all the bills piling up and REAL books like Adam Perl's Tiny Town Teasers Vol. 1 needing to be finished before Kwanzaa or Ebola or both get here ... Ah hell. It's late now and I've wasted the time I needed with the Indian Pins telling you not much of nothing.
We'll tell you more or less another time. -- A senior official, tinytowntimes.com