A Visit to the Manipulator of the Mind – Mr. Quost, a Neighborhood Wizard

Arlene Schneier and I had heard that Mr. Quost who lived on Albemarle Road was a Manipulator of the Mind.

“What does that mean, Arlene?” I liked her.  I wanted to impress her.

“It means, Eric, that he went to NYU medical school and he studied Brain Science.”

I had heard that Mr. Quost helped kids whose brains were messed up so they couldn’t talk properly or walked weird so this made sense.  I rang on his doorbell and asked to come in.

“Do you want to visit another planet?” he asked me after we had a little tea and saltine crackers.  “I have a special machine in my office where you can do just that.”

“What planet?”

“Well people go all sorts of different places in my office but where I’d really like to take you is a special place that only you can go.”

He strapped me down onto the table and gave me ether and started stimulating my brain with wires.  I went to a planet called OLIVETTI.  On Olivetti music is just like flavor is for us — everybody hears music and responds in exactly the same way and people need music.  But flavor is also just like music for us — there is such a subtle range of responsiveness that the human consciousness can respond to a grape or a cheese sandwich.  Cooks are like composers.   Their philosophers talk about the FLAVOR of the spheres.

There were so many magical animals: gryphons, dragons, wyrms, and cockatrices — I had so many flavor tournaments riding the dragons, casting the lance into the mouth of the great worm, I won tournaments.  I was a knight.  I was the lord of knights. I was the king.  Only five minutes had passed.

I was done and felt sweaty and weird. In school at PS 139 I was confused, had difficulty paying attention.  I went to MR. Nadel the guidance counselor.  He looked in my pupils.  “Have you visited a Manipulator of the Mind?”

I told him about Mr. Quost.  He was very concerned.  He said there should be a law.  “You’re very very lucky.  This kind of man is like a spider — he was trying to find the precise point in your brain where you would like it so much that you would never want to come back.  And then you would be his slave forever.”

“Arlene!  Arlene!” I realized she was in danger.  I went running to Mr. Quost’s house.  I saw on the screen where she was — holding a harp, fluttering her white wings.  I beat the old man and strapped myself into his apparatus.

I mounted Snazak my Black Dragon and  to ride to her heaven heaven where she sat by the right hand of God the Father playing her harp and grabbed a lance to rupture her bliss and save her from her dreams.


One thought on “A Visit to the Manipulator of the Mind – Mr. Quost, a Neighborhood Wizard

  1. Mikey says:

    On the planet I went to there were aliens, but hard to describe. As an analogy, they were most like our plants because they were stationary; but in some ways they weren’t. Like they were rooted into the ground physically and if you stayed for long enough you could see the roots, if I can call them that, digging into the ground and strengthening and expanding.

    Just like a plant they took their nutrients partly from the ground where they were planted and partly from the air, but they had a more sophisticated system than I’ve come across on Earth. If the Tarabs – I called them Tarabs, though I never found out what they called themselves – needed some cryolite or ammonia or something, they would extend roots to another spot near where they were planted (they weren’t planted, of course) which had the mineral they needed or, and this was the remarkable thing, into a neighbouring Tarab.

    They were certainly intelligent, but the thinking matter flowed fluidly throughout the Tarab through these roots. This meant that at one time the brainstuff was heavily concentrated in the tusks and if you wanted to communicate with this thing then you had to go to talk to the tusks. And at another time you had to go to the proboscis to talk to that. Of course that’s not how the Tarabs talked to each other. In fact the concept of talking doesn’t really translate into Tarab. They clearly communicated, but this process was the most bizarre of all – some of the brain matter from one of these creatures would ooze down one of the roots and into another Tarab. Sometimes the original brain matter would ooze back, sometimes different brain matter oozed back and sometimes the brainstuff just stayed in the new Tarab, eventually becoming part of it.

    I stayed for a while talking to these creatures, thinking how much I could learn. But you know how, even if you’re not a racist, you sometimes find it hard to talk to foreign people because they have such a different sense of humour to you? Well it was a bit like that. I’m so used to talking to one person and building up a relationship with them that I found it hard to connect with the Tarabs. One moment they seemed to have an aggressive and surly attitude, the next moment some of their brain had oozed off and they had taken on a submissive and sycophantic mien. “Who are you?” I shouted eventually. But the Tarabs just tilted its head to the side and looked at me, and I think it was thinking “What kind of a question is that?”

    I came back after that. It was an interesting experience I suppose. I’m not sure if I’d do it again.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s