Josh B., where are you when I really need you?

Buster and I are back. We had a grand adventure, as promised.

Buster is my little truck. I’ve never named a car before, but I’ve never had one wink at me in the dealer parking lot before either. It felt like he deserved a name.

Buster is the first car I ever bought all by myself (I mean without the help of a male person of some sort or other). I got a good price without assistance, and after somewhat over 100,000 miles, I think I got a pretty good little truck, too.

For the last 10 days, I’ve been a “residency assistant” at my old MFA in writing program. One of the blessings of being retired (and there are many) is that you have a lot of freedom in arranging your schedule. So when the call went out for program graduates who could come for the 10-day residency and do assorted stuff, I raised my hand.

My responsibilities were nebulous, mostly introducing writers at their readings and doing a little airport ferry duty. Buster becomes important in this part, because the airport runs were all on Sunday and Monday. You may recall that we had a little snow and ice those days.

Buster performed like a champion snow car (frankly much to my surprise), slipping occasionally but getting us safely from here to there past spinouts, head-on collisions and rolled-over semis. I never even had to chain up, which hurt my feelings not at all. The Monday morning trip to the airport over Hwy 30 took nearly 4 hours. The return trip, when things were thawed, was just over 2 hours.

In exchange for these light duties, I got to attend 10 days of lectures and readings by world-class writers, drink a LOT of Keoki coffee (just what my bronchitis needed, I’m pleased to report), and eat fresh seafood for a week or so in Seaside. I’ve OD’d on Dungeness crab and razor clams. The paying folks spend about $2,000 for this experience. I got it for free.

Long days of readings and writing craft discussions were topped off with evenings of sincere discussion of the curvature of space/time, Frank O’Hara’s “Lunch Poems,” games of Catch Phrase, and other really important matters.

So I’m back. One of the things I found in Seaside was my Mario hat. I was sure it would improve my power star accumulating ability by leaps and bounds. But the truth of the matter is, even with my magic hat, Major Burrows is still kicking my butt. And I thought we had mole problems on the golf course. . .

So, Josh–what do I do about this guy? Several times I’ve had him running down the trail holding his rear in pain. Then he turns around and offs me, and I seem helpless to prevent it. Any suggestions?

The forest damage from the December storms around Seaside and Astoria is mind-boggling. Picture a hillside of a couple of hundred acres with a half-mature forest on it, thousands and thousands of trees 20-25 years old at a rough guess. All but about 50 of the trees are simply blown over, lying flat on the ground. The “survivors” are all broken off about halfway up. There’s not a single tree intact. It was like a massive explosion or meteor strike or something. It was one of the saddest things I’ve seen in a long time.

I’ll write more tomorrow, but after all that fun and frolic, I’m really bushed tonight “and so to bed.”

Josh, I’m counting on you to tell me how to finish off Major Burrows before I throw the Wii controller through Ralph’s TV set.

2 Responses to “Josh B., where are you when I really need you?”

  1. Josh Bancroft Says:

    I’m right here. 🙂

    So you do a ground pound to get him to come out of the ground, right? Then he starts running around for a little while.

    Don’t run straight after him when he does that. Try running around the other side of the planet. What you have to do is spin and hit him at any time while he’s running around.

    Then he’ll go back underground. Pound again, repeat. On the third time, you’ll have to pound him twice before he pops out. And he gets faster each time. But hit him three times with a spin, and he’s done.

    Don’t miss the Life mushroom on the little planet right before you get to him. I will raise your life points up to 6 (from 3), allowing you to last longer in the battle. Pound the little wooden disk thing to get it.

    Good luck, and email me or something (or post again) if you’re still stuck! Wouldn’t want you ending up on 🙂

  2. Marianne Says:

    Oh, thank you, Josh! But I feel really stupid. I should have known that from all the other monsters that you have to attack from behind. The problem I was running into was that after the second hit when he was running around berserkly I couldn’t catch him, and if I tried to attack again with the thump-jump from the rear he turned around immediately and ate me up. Thi sis like the Bowser nephew that went crazy on the transparent globe that you had to head off. I’ll be going in in a short time to try it.

    I knew you could help. . .Thanks. I miss you.

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