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 Post subject: Statue
PostPosted: Tue Dec 20, 2022 8:10 pm 

Joined: Sat Jul 11, 2020 5:36 pm
Posts: 820
Location: Chilliwack, BC
A tourist was visiting San Francisco for the first time. He stopped at various venues — Nob Hill, Twin Peaks, Fisherman’s Wharf (where he saw a bus with a group of penguins seated, but that's another story) — and as the afternoon lengthened, he decided to visit Chinatown.

Ah, exotic Chinatown! He was enchanted by the different rhythms and tones of language, the steam and smells of various cuisines, stores offering herbs, clothing, souvenirs.

One curio store caught his eye. He wandered inside to see artwork and sculptures of amazing intricacy, and even, in some pieces, a hint of something sinister. The proprietor, an aged bearded gentleman in an old-fashioned robe, greeted him with a knowing nod.

The tourist’s attention was captured by an astonishingly realistic statuette of a rat. It seemed that some strange power emanated from its red jeweled eyes.

“How much for this?” the tourist asked.

The owner smiled. “For the statuette? Only $25. But …” His voice lowered and his smile widened. “There is a story about that statuette. Oh yes, there is a story. And the story costs $500.”

The tourist threw $25 on the counter. “Keep your story, old man. All I want is the statuette.”

The old man laughed. “If you change your mind, return here — if you can.”

The tourist, slightly unnerved by this remark, left the store, heading to Aquatic Park and a dramatic view of the Golden Gate Bridge.

As he walked, he began to get an uneasy feeling. After a few blocks, he sensed the sound of tiny footsteps following him. He turned to see a rat following him.

After another block, two rats.

After another, four.

Block after block, more rats followed him … and began to approach more closely, with their malign intent obvious.

And the statuette was becoming heavier to carry, as if it wanted the tourist to stop and yield to the oncoming rats.

Perspiring with effort, the tourist broke into a run. The rats, now a horde, followed in close pursuit. The tourist, gasping for breath, reached the water’s edge. With his last reserve of strength, he hurled the rat statuette into San Francisco Bay and turned to face his pursuers …

to see the rats follow the statuette, to a watery doom in the cold waters by the Golden Gate.

Shaken and muttering, the tourist slowly returned to the curio store.

“Ah,” smiled the owner. “You have returned. You are ready to pay for the story now?”

The tourist frowned. “The story? No, I don't want that. But I was wondering … Do you have a statuette of a lawyer?”

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