Thursday, May 15, 2014

We were given shelter part 8

The screen announces with a mild orchestral crescendo, that it had a broadcast. Mika turned off the cartoon rerun that he was watching instead of working since it couldn’t compete with the noise of the new screen.
The screen showed a man running down the street. He is running with abandon, hurtling himself on despite his limbs that kept threatening to tangle. His hair was shabbily trimmed, his clothes trash. Epic music swelled as he ran, he tripped once and then pulled himself back up. Swelling strings, guitars and pounding drums made his actions seem worthy of a champion. He couldn’t be the protagonist thought Mika. The  street in the video was the one right out front, Mika began to realize. Was he being asked to identify with the commonplace events of the street? It was a neglected street. A couple of city offices that the mayor had defunded but left staffed, mainly so people could wander in and shout their complaints. This was mixed with a couple of private shelters and kitchens/social welfare offices like the one he worked for that people tolerated, and then black market stalls, kitchens, and junkies. The screen showed a series of clips of junkies doing junkie things which even the hardest core of drug enthusiast would have found depressing.  Ripping apart radios and bicycles and then leaving the parts scattered in ritualistic displays. Puking into gutters. Scouring the same patch of dirty sidewalks for hours saying I know I left it here, it was right here. Crouching in dark spots administering drugs.  This hirsute, sweaty man that was being shown to him was definitely of the junkie tribe.
The man turned and shouted (silently for he wasn't sound tracked) and ran towards the plastic door of one of the neighboring agencies. He slammed into it full force, bouncing back onto the sidewalk, leaving a spot of blood on the doorway.
The music rose in intensity and an operatic female voice joined the proceedings.  Black armored van dripping with sound equipment appeared. It stopped and out poured figures in full body suits. They surrounded the man who was now struggling to rise and laid into him with black sticks that telescoped from their gauntleted hands. More blood hits the door, and the sidewalk, and the mirrored goggles of the attackers. Then they haul him into the van as the music reaches a climactic pitch.
A montage is shown next. More of the black vans, vomiting out parties of truncheon happy squads taking down sweaty junkies, little kitchens cooking suspicious looking meat, and street preachers. Some of the attacked clothing disintegrates in the assault and the indignity of being hauled off mostly nude is added on. The soundtracks is quieting and the sound pouring off the vans takes over, a combination of babies crying and laughing mixed into a rude car horn symphony cut through with white noise bursts and ancient death metal. A whole montage of eyes popping open in shabby tents and sleeping bags trying to understand that sound, the sound that now envelopes them.
Then a vision of the street filled with shops, restaurants, happy children stuffing multicolored “food’ in their mouths. Jubilant clean skinned people in well matched outfits relishing a day. 

Waterfront market coming soon from the Business Coalition and the Mayor’s office in bold print moved across the bottom of the screen.

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