Since I don't have a common theme to play with today and there are lots of images I haven't found space to include, consider this the start of a rummage sale of moments, stories, and such that I've seen and heard while on the road.
But let's start with the god Pan, the avatar of drunken debauchery and profligate fucking from the pagan days when the worship of many gods for various purposes made sense and everybody was okay with that. Anyway, centuries later when the Word of the Lord was spreading far and wide and probably because Pan was the rock ‘n roll party god, he had the dubious distinction of his image becoming that of the Devil by over-zealous Christians who believed that the flavors of life should be only colored by shades of gray. In case you haven't figured it out, I am a blithering Tom Robbins fan, and “Jitterbug Perfume” gave the god Pan the respect he deserved, with a major, if not starring role, and the favorable impression stuck.
Why do I mention this now?
Because perhaps it’s possible that the god Pan had to go underground and reincarnate as various human beings to survive the attacks against him; and although he has lost a lot of power, his spirit still lives. And for some crazy damn reason, I'm convinced his current incarnation is in the form of Michael Pando, aka Pando to his friends. For those of you who know Pando, this statement makes total sense because he adores booze to the point of alcoholism and young girls barely into the phase of adulthood. Since he's lost god-status and invincibility, he is weakened by his passions for the party that doesn't stop and often winds up in jail. Everybody who knows Pando has a half dozen outrageous Pando stories to tell, which will become legend.
It is inevitable.
Love him or hate him, he is a character, but a character challenged by finding his good space in this world. He was chased out of Juneau due to a shoot out
with a psycho bum who had taken over the cabin Pando had built.
That kind of thing, you know.
This past summer, Pando had a touristic rafting job with an anal company - which seems to be the case with many touristic companies in Alaska, you know. Anyway, being himself, Pando got drunk one night and stole a golf cart - buck nekkid - and had security chasing him. To disguise himself, he put a box over his head and hightailed it to safety.
Thus he became known throughout this camp as "Box Man." Every so often, during the summer, Box Man would make a naked public appearance streaking through at the most random moments and it wasn't long before he became legend, and the best part was that nobody knew it was him. One day, he was talking to some dude from some other country and the guy said with a thick
accent, "Box Man, I think he like Zorro. Box man, he come for de peeple."
Can you imagine hearing something like that about yourself?
Eventually, Pando got booted out due to failing a surprise piss test – he also liked to smoke weed. Well, he had to make a spectacular exit, didn't he? His people would expect it of Box Man.
So one night, when everybody was at dinner, including all the bosses, Box Man makes his final appearance, nakedly running in with a box over him. He stops, strips the box away and stands there with his bare ass and cock, unmasked for all to see before streaking away and packing up his shit to go.
Pando may have even been sober.
Since I've only heard about this through the grapevine, I may not have all the details straight. But what the hell, it makes a good story. And when I showed this to Pando, he seemed more than a little flattered.
The god Pan keeping the spirit alive - what do y'all think?
PS This is from the DIY booktour/roadtrip I did in 2005-2006 when marijuana was still illegal everywhere. This is one of my favorite stories from that road trip. Although I did not experience it directly, I knew Pando, and Joe told me this story at the Blackburn Music Festival in Kennicott/McCarthy. I would later have a challenging night crashing in a squatters treehouse in Girdword with both Pando and Joe, while they were drunk and I was sober. Good times.