A Short Tour of Bill Steinkellner’s Mind.

2 Dec

A post card story is a road with many forks. This card was going to be a monolog from the POV of the store owner. It would have been titled “Crap”. The point being that no one needs the carnival glass, cut art (I have no idea, either) and copper doo dads that this place sells.

But then when I looked at it more closely my eye is drawn to that hanging bird cage. A short history of all the occupants of that bird cage? Or I could have gone on a rant about how thematically out to lunch the bird cage is surrounded by all these stone and copper gee gaws. (And I love to rant. Though, it’s tough in a town where Dennis Miller is the Ranter’s ranter. I can rant all I want and still be #2.)

On the other side of the card the owners pitch the superiority of their store by saying they provide souvenirs “at last year’s prices”. How would you fact check that? Do they think tourists would come to Butte, Montana — three miles south of Interstate 90, on Highway 10 S. — two years in a row? Did they lose a lot of repeat business and after a lot of hand wringing this was their solution?

The card is addressed to “Mother” from “Bea and Royce”. As a skilled postcardologist I might be able to spin some gold out of that mundane straw that might hold your interest for 300 words.

Finally, it’s postmarked 1968. I was nineteen that year. The government was toying with the idea of sending me to Southeast Asia to kill or die. Or both. You’ve met me. Is that a bad idea or what?

Instead I thought of writing this. Thanks for your time and attention. Watch your step as you exit the tram!


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