RETRO RELAPSE is a series of older articles from various places where I used to write before Talking Pulp.
*Written in 2014.
*Taken from my personal journal.
There is a legend that must be chronicled in order to keep it going for generations. A legend that I had never heard about until I experienced it firsthand while camping recently at Fisheating Creek in Palmdale, FL. The legend I am speaking of here in this journal, is the Legend of Dr. Chek.
Now before one might jump the gun, don’t simply assume that I am talking about the generic brand of Dr. Pepper soda pop that Winn-Dixie distributes through their chain stores. Oh no! This Dr. Chek is a raccoon! A brave warrior raccoon with an uncanny and bizarre handicap.
You see, while camping late at night, my fellow campers and I left a cast iron pot full of chicken and potatoes near the bushes by our camp in an effort to lure some small woodland creatures out of the brush for a little bit of casual observation. As the hours passed and I had to chase off some feral cat a half dozen times, I was alerted to the presence of something alive and unusual in the scrub palmettos approaching the cast iron pot.
A peculiar sound emanated from the palm brush. It sounded like “tink… tink…” -pause- “tink… tink…” -pause- “tink…” The sound kept repeated like some strange Morse code getting nearer and nearer! At first I thought that maybe some backwoods redneck was playing a joke on us, but no!
Out of the bushes crawled two raccoons. The first seemed very confident and brave and dove his tiny raccoon paws into the cast iron pot honorably and heroically. I named him Colonel G.W. Bertram Garrett. Behind the good Colonel however was the answer to the odd mystery behind that “tink… tink…” sound for there stood a raccoon with a rather bewildering and unbelievable feature.
As I was a bit taken aback by this interesting discovery, I had to stare harder to make sure that my 20/20 eyes were not deceiving me. But they weren’t; there was a raccoon with a soda can for a front right leg! Somehow it must have gotten stuck and he was never able to get the damned thing off! Hence the name, Dr. Chek.
Now one would think that this can could cut into Dr. Chek’s flesh and sever an artery and that is very much possible. However, when startled by our observation of him once or twice, he darted into the bushes like he wasn’t hindered by the abnormal handicap at all. In fact, he seemed to be just fine in his condition even though he could only eat and scrap with one paw, he couldn’t climb trees and lost the art of stealth with his ominous “tink… tink…” The truth is, he didn’t even seem to care and he didn’t let it get him down. Pretty impressive, as I’ve seen bear-sized men get taken out by springtime pollen. This raccoon was a goddamned warrior!
Maybe somehow that old soda can will combine with Dr. Chek’s DNA and when he plants his seed in a lady ‘coon, it will birth a new species of aluminum raccoons. It would only be a matter of time before they conquered the Earth! It’d be like Planet of the Apes but with metal raccoons – Planet of the Tin ‘Coons! Except they probably wouldn’t try to kill mankind, they’d just make us work on farms created for us to generate human trash for the tin ‘coons to eat. Damn, we all might be royally screwed!
I probably should have thought of this sooner, like when I was camping, and thus murdered Dr. Chek while he was in my sight. If mankind falls to these creatures, I am to blame. I should do something to make it right, if it isn’t already too late.
I apologize Dr. Chek, for I must not stop the hunt until your little half ‘coon, half cyborg soda can body is quivering and bleeding at the end of my bodacious cutlass!
Or… I could just leave him be, as a warrior of Dr. Chek’s caliber should be worshiped and admired like a just and righteous god.