Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : November 1st 2013 Contents A27
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7 Patterns to
Milne Major moved one step
up the golden staircase in
the clouds; he could see
pearly gates high above. Milne
turned to the step below, where a
fierce-looking dark-skinned man
in priest s robes stood with a
physics textbook and a short,
knobbed, bamboo cane. On the
step above was a grizzled man
with a Gibson electric guitar.
"Excuse me," said Milne Major,
"but do I need documentation to
enter Heaven? I could try to pass
off this hole in my chest as one of
those pix of JC they used to hang
in Catholic primary schools. David
Rudder said our tickets were beat-
ing in our chests, but does access
to Oval also allow entry to Para-
dise? And what happens if your
heart was actually removed? Do
flapping aortas count as ticket
stubs or hanging shards?"
"There is no God," snarled the
reedy little guitar man, "and Brian
Wilson is his son!"
Milne stepped back. "I beg your
pardon, Sir," he said, "but I mis-
took you for a human being. You
seem to have benefited from Dale
Carnegie courses Keith Smith sent
me on, but mine did not take.
Like the Latin that prevented me
following the family footpath to
the law, I lacked your finesse in
aggression. I m going over the
bannister to move closer to the
top, an old Trinidadian trick to
beat traffic and/or criminal jus-
"Hey, Babe," said the reedy man,
"take a walk on the wild side."
Milne Major prepared to scale
the banister but the dark-skinned
priest rapped his knuckles with
He peered at the priest. "Father
Knox by Night!" he said.
"And you are Milne Minor," said
Knoxy. "I never forget a posterior
I ve benched."
"Milne Major, now," said Antho-
ny, "promotion coming with the
heart attack that killed me first,
thereby moving me to the top of
the siblings line."
"Whichever," replied Knoxy (by
Nightie), "don t embarrass the
family or college!"
Below, voices started the school
song, "Out of the shadows of the
past they come to cheer us/Boys
of the old brigade of gallant CIC!"
Knoxy smiled, rapt, but Milne
was being pulled over the banister
by two female forms, both pretty,
one fair and large, the other
smaller and darker.
"The Hardy Girls!" declared
"Hardly," said the bigger one. "I
brought you some stewed fish but
Veni had no sweetbread today!"
Anthony peered closer.
"I would have," said Anthony,
"had the coconut bake."
Behind her, Gail Massy held out
a battered copy of Scientific
American. "Hold on to this," she
said. "Deliveries are Hell up here.
And the bandwidth sucks."
"Good Lord," said Anthony.
"You mean BC, Raff and Kevin
were right! Heaven isn t perfect?"
"Depends," said Allyson, "on
which one you go. Because of your
background, you could go to
Trinidad Heaven or Catholic
Heaven; and even Hindus go to
"I m not going Pentecostal,"
said Milne, tipping his head back
towards the priest below.
"Good choice," said Gail. "It s
only preaching and Bible class in
Pentecostal Heaven. Once a month
you get a glass of Peardrax but
that s as b---s-out as they get. In
Catholic Heaven it s peaceful, but
there s not a lot to do, once you ve
gazed at the face of God for a
while. Not that it s not a nice face,
eh," she added hastily.
Milne stood in silence but, when
no one volunteered, he asked.
"And what about Trini Heaven?"
They glanced at one another.
"It different," said Gail, at last.
"Everyone does get een. Is like
North Stand Panorama Prelims
Sunday in there sometimes."
"Thank God for that," breathed
Gail. "You know how dull Heaven
would be without sinners? Who
would beat the iron in the rhythm
Milne frowned. "Rhythm sec-
tion? You mean that..."
Before he could finish, a huge
shout came from above. "Anthony
Milne turned to Allyson. "No!
Don t tell me! But he overdid
everything, from crack cocaine to
unsuitable sex, and even more
unsuitable sexual companions!
How the Hell he got to Heaven?"
"Ahhhhh," said Wayne Brown,
gliding up to the edge of the stair-
case on a white Sunfish and low-
ering the jib. "He wrote beautifully
and God s a sucker for a nice turn
of phrase." "
Now I know I m in Hell," said
Milne. "How can I stand your
pretentiousness for eternity?"
"You can," said Wayne, "stop
my column. I prefer sailing."
"No," said Anthony, "the col-
umn was good. I just didn t like
you much. But you re better than
"Who he?" demanded Keith
Smith, as he flopped across the
nearest cloud, oversized shirtjac
barely covering even more over-
sized belly. Milne slumped.
"Don t tell me," he said, "you re
the firetrucking editor!"
Keith raised his eyebrows. "I was
acting editor-in-chief," he replied.
"Until now. You re taking over."
Somehow, Milne knew it was
true: he held power, now, over all
who had dominated him.
"I can t say whether yours was
easier to tote than mine," said
Keith, "but we carried baggage,
the both of us. And it was called,
"It killed me," said Milne.
"No," said Keith, "you were a
tortured genius, is all."
Easy for you to say, thought
Anthony, when you were the one
torturing me with stupid assign-
"What you want me do?" asked
Keith. "You have time. The lime in
Heaven is on the steps; just like at
any bar on any Friday in Town."
"I can really send you to cover
the opening of a standpipe?"
Keith grinned. "Heaven for
you," he said, "could be Hell for
me. But the more time you spend
here, the more you will be glad
you carried your burden, like I did
"We never put it down," said
"And Trinidad has a chance,"
said Keith, "as long as they have
people willing to take care of her,
not rip her off.
"Come. Look Bertie tuning up.
Let we go hear him play one for
Errol on Monday."
BC Pires is preparing to help
Errol Fabien look for his deposit. E-
mail your "it could happens" to
him at firstname.lastname@example.org
THANK GOD IT'S FRIDAY
ANTHONY IN HEAVEN
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