Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Goodnight Mr. Unknown, Wherever You Are

"Without mysteries, life would be very dull indeed. What would be left to strive for, if everything were known?"

-Charles de Lint

It's time to once again to ask the question... Who is this guy? I met him on a cold December morning in 2005, when I went out to my car, and found him sitting on the little brick fence that sits alongside my driveway. He is a mystery because no one who lives on the property knows where he came from, or who placed him there. No one that lives on the property has children, so how could the unknown man have gotten there? I have asked everyone I can think of, including a toy expert I used to know, and no one has been able to identify the vagabond traveler. I sure would like to know who he might be. If you have any insight into his identity, I would love to hear from you.

Every year, on December 3rd, I write about him, hoping that someone will finally recognize him and tell me his story. Do you recognize my little stranger? If so, feel free to tell me who he is, and if possible, where I can find another one just like him! See, I don't have the little stranger anymore, because he disappeared just as quickly as he had arrived. He made me smile in the short time I knew him. :) I liked him at "hello." I will never forget him! One of these days, someone will be able to tell me who he is. :)

Last year, in an effort to have a little fun, I asked folks to submit possible names for Mr. Unknown. Let's do that again! If you don't know who he is, but would like to submit a name, feel free to leave a name for him in the comment thread for this entry. :)

"Mr. Unknown"
December, 2005
Early Morning


The Cheshire Cat said...

I'm a G-nome,
A g-nother g-nome,
I'm just looking for a g-nice home!
I just T-roll g-neighbourhoods and
Occasionally like g-now, stop and stand.

Wil said...

Hemo Flubberman, of the Hilo, Hawaii Clan Flubberman, is an intrepid, albeit reluctant, world traveller of no little infamy. His first voyage occurred in the 1950's when his 4 y.o. compatriot, Harold Isingore, left Hemo tucked amongst the hull fibers of Thor Hyerdahl's Kon-Tiki during a shipboard tour prior to the vessel's departure from the harbor at Waikiki, Honolulu, Hawaii. Owing to a misidentification by Hyerdahl as the evil troll responsible for the vast quantity of water leaking into the bilges, Hemo found himself floating on the wide expanse of the central Pacific for several years before washing ashore on the beaches at Sequim, Washington in the Olympic National Park. There, he was pounded into the sand during a particularly nasty winter storm, coming to rest about six inches under a teak log which had also ended its long sojourn in the Kuroshio current on that strand of sand.

Hemo thrived as a subterranean beach bum for many years until his idyll was ripped asunder by timber thieves on a moonless winter night. His home was transported to a mill outside of Eureka, California where he barely escaped an ignominious beheading at the teeth of the sawmill's blade as his clump of sand fell into the sawdust below the blade's rollers. Hemo languished in his woody demesnes for many years until a peripatetic sawyer discovered him while struggling for adequate footing during a filing and tooth-setting session in 1968. Sam the Sawyer gave Hemo a ride later that spring to Big Sur. There Hemo struck up a conversation with a one-legged Skipper diva doll on the beach, culminating in a nearly fifteen-year stint as the cog to Skipper's wheel in the toy box at the residence of one Jaxom Smoot (of the Berkley, California Smoots).

Hemo would have gladly continued on, giving Skipper and her pal Barbie the old plastic sprue if it weren't for the intervention of Fate in the form of Mrs. Smoot, emptying the basement of a half-century's accumulation of detritus, flotsam and jetsam washed upon that subterranean shore by the combined neglect of her seven children. Each moved out leaving a cardboard box labeled “toys” behind. After Mr. Smoot blew a triple-A having sex in said basement with that wanton hussy, Godiva Smith, from two doors down one July evening while Mrs. Smoot dozed to the dulcet tones of Alex Trebeck on the living room TV after supper, Mrs. Smoot exorcised her anger by cleaning out said basement once and for all. Everything was heaved, including Hemo. In fact Hemo came to rest up against the white picket fence that separated the driveways between the Smoot home and the cute cottage rental of Alan and Carly Gordon. There he lay amongst leaf mold and a gum wrapper for nearly a year before finding himself being unearthed by the black and white paws of a huge cat with the unlikely name of “Elvis.”

Elvis was the fur-child and family clown of the aforementioned Alan and Carly Gordon. Now, Elvis was a character all on his own, worthy of far more than a simple paragraph. Alas, for the purposes of this tale, Elvis gets short shrift. Elvis was a trickster, descended from a long line of coyotes, created during a menage a deu between a sleek siamese named Jasmine and a shape-shifting canine named Sam. Elvis took one look at Hemo and knew he had to do something with the tiny traveler. But what?

Then it came to him. One morning, when his friend Penny the Possum was a little slow to descend from the tangerine tree she made her home in, Elvis carried Hemo to the top of the picket fence and there affixed him with super-secret sticky cat saliva for an early morning sunbath. Owing to a particularly juicy bit of gossip from Penny, Elvis forgot all about Hemo sunbathing amongst the fir pickets.

Well, you know the rest. Absent-minded Carly stumbled upon our hero as she fumbled for the keys to the Saturn, late (as usual) for her weekly appointment with Dr. Bob of the headshrinking Bobs. Puzzled by Hemo's near-nakedness, intrigued by the telltale bulge in his loin cloth and the cunning shape of his spear, our sensuous beauty plucked him from his perch and embarked upon her own journey to learn the identity of Hemo from Hilo.

The rest, as they say, is herstory...

Mike said...

Well, I was going to suggest the name Elmer, but after Wil's nice story, I feel mine is inadequate.

Nancy said...

I'm with Mike! How can I possible top Wil? Anyway, I see him as a Baby ET. So maybe "ETeeny"?

Sure hope you find him again. Looks like maybe a Happy Meal toy?

Hugs to you and Eteeny...


Nancy said...


It's ET grandpa! That's it. No name, but that's just gotta be who he is.

Suzanne R said...

Wil's story is untoppable, but my humble submission is the name Durante, since you have named your kittens the last names of singers. You may be too young to remember Jimmy Durante, but Mr. Unknown resembles him, especially in the area of the nose. There is a vast difference in the clothing worn, however. LOL! (If you don't know who Jimmy Durante is, you might Google him -- I imagine there is a little bit or more about him online.) So that's my submission, for what it's worth. ;-)

Suzanne R said...

Here is a P.S.: It just occurred to me that your title is a take-off on a Jimmy Durante signature sign-off, "Good night, Mrs. Calabash, wherever you are," which was a tribute to his late wife. Who woulda thunk it? LOL!