Fictoid: the counterfeiter

Fictoid: the counterfeiter

call it the harpooner’s shack
with rich delicious deliberate irony

they gather to
talk and swap lies and brag
about the one they are going to catch
the one that got away this time
but oh brother next time…

the counterfeiter comes in
lays out his wares

the true hunters ignore him
[though truth be told
more than a few
envied him]

he smiles
and waves at them
and a few grunt in return
but most
look away

their disdain is wasted
the counterfeiter acts
oblivious to it

in a few moments
someone comes in
looking for an idea

unable to go through
the impenetrable barrier
between the real and unreal
such people come to where
idea hunters gather
and seek to buy
what wares they offer

genuine idea hunters
real idea hunters
turn their noses up
at those who hunt on demand

rather starve in pride
than soil their souls
bringing back
a trophy-to-order
for someone who
couldn’t hunt

but even those
who hunt on demand
are at least acknowledged
as genuine members
of the company

not like the counterfeiter

the customer
comes in
looks around

even the most proud
of the idea hunters
shifts ever slightly
so the customer
can see their wares

more established
mercenary hunters
rattle their instruments
clear their throats

the customer ignores them

the bright dazzle
of the counterfeiter’s wares
attract him

the counterfeiter
isn’t particularly good
at his craft

his wares
bear only the faintest of resemblances
to real ideas
that real hunters
bring back
cobbled together
as they were
out of a myriad of properties
and while colorful
were all a dull
not the shimmering
of a real true
genuine idea

but the customer
like most customers
has the taste of a pig a pig
who can not tell turds
from truffles

walks over to
the counterfeiter’s table

“See anything you like, sir? 
Anything that catches your fancy? 
Oh, this one here is particularly beautiful. 
My, such a job I had landing him –
not that you’d want to hear anything about that, sir. 
But it is fine, sir, it is good.”

“I dunno. 
Could you perhaps lop off this portion in the middle and
replace it with maybe a piece of that one over there. 
No, not from the middle, from the end.”

“Yessir, very good, sir. 
Most folks would not have
your discerning eye,
but you I can tell see
there is no harm – no harm at all! –
in putting those pieces together
just the way you require. 
See?  There, done lickety-split,
just as nicely as you please. 
Shall I wrap it up for you, sir?”

customer pays up
[real hunters grunt in surprise
hate the counterfeiter they might
but the dirty little bastard
sure knows how to get paid!] 
and leaves with his counterfeit idea
bits and pieces
breaking off
and trailing
behind him

the counterfeiter smiles at the real idea hunters
not a smile of triumph
or even a smile of contempt
but more like a sad smile as if
he had…well…not really an idea
perhaps more of a clue
as to the vast gulf between
him and them
a clue flavored perhaps
with a bit of an appreciation
for the irony of it all

“That’s the way it’s done”
he says packing up his wares
and hustling out the door

he doesn’t bother to offer
to buy any of them a drink




© Buzz Dixon

(updated August 11, 2018)

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