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Week of 9 August 2021: Fos continues...

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By Jim Thompson interpreting for Fos the Rat

The Rats arrived at the big building with the big half ball on top. What we didn't count on is how bad it stinks inside! Don't know how the Big Things stand it, but after a day or two, we pretty much got used to it. I guess because it has been here a long time and gotten saturated with the residuals of Big Thing's activities causes it to stink so.

The Great Mother called us to order. "Thank you for coming. As usual, the Big Things have been working overtime again creating havoc and committing crimes throughout the land. What's on the docket today?"

"Chewer!" the Great Mother called. "How many cases do we have on the docket this year?" (Mr. Jim note: chewers are the court clerks. They record the proceedings by chewing and making marks in a piece of wood. You could say cellulose used to store ideas.)

"Quite a few, but you know I can't count. Rats can't count."

"Yes, I know," the Great Mother sighed. "Give us the first case, please."

"Rel, come forward!"

Great Mother, "Didn't we see you a couple of thousand lights ago?"

Rel, hung his head. "Yes, Great Mother, I am sad to report that you did. The mill I live in keeps getting more and more corrupt. I don't know what to do!"

"So, what's going on in your mill, Rel?"

"Well, we have these places called 'Technical Departments.'"

"OK, what goes on there?"

"They test paper. There are all sorts of things there the Big Things call 'instruments.'"

"Yes, go on..."

"Well, one kind of instrument is called balances. Not sure what it is, but I heard the Big Things say they are used to weigh things, whatever that means."

"So, what's the problem?" The Great Mother was starting to sound a little irritated--she doesn't like to beat around the bush.

"They keep disappearing."

"You mean like, poof! They are gone?"

"Not exactly. They are there one day and then gone the next."

"Then what happens?"

"The Big Things buy new ones and then they disappear!"

"Does this ever stop?"

"No, it doesn't seem so. I overheard one of the Big Things say he is taking them to weigh druds, whatever that is."

Zil, the ever present and lively smart aleck interrupted, "I think they mean DRUGS. They use the balances to weight DRUGS."

"You mean like aspirin?" The Great Mother naively inquired.

"No! Illegal drugs!"

"Oh! Well, they shouldn't be doing that!"

"Really?" I thought. Maybe this location is affecting the Great Mother. I hear some of the Big Things that meet here have comprehension problems at times.


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