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My Adventures at Public University

 Today is the day I had been instructed to meet with my attorney and his brother, the good doctor, at the campus of the local university.
    Still shrouded in mystery, this was a meeting that was supposed to be instrumental in our legal battles, and our pending litigation against this esteemed seat of learning. I made my way through the bucolic grounds housing all the schools and colleges making up the university proper, and proceeded with not a small degree of trepidation, as my legal council had given me somewhat irregular instructions to meet just outside the front gates and not within the actual precinct of the schools, as I was given the unsettling news that the good doctor, who had received his doctorate and degree from this very institution, was forbidden by law and several restraining orders from setting foot on, or within 100 meters of, even, the grounds and property of any part of the colleges, schools, university, or maintenance outbuildings owned or related to the institute in question! So I enjoyed the pristine examples of mid-century "Brutalist" architecture, and made my way to just over 100 m distance from the back gate, and the locale our proscribed rendezvous.

Fine example of Brutalist Architecture

The Rear Gate

Our Meeting Place
 Here I found my lawyer, and the doctor, milling around nervously. Neither man looked as though he had slept, both wore the same clothes as yesterday (looking rather unkempt and disheveled) and the doctor in particular, smelled strongly of vodka and cigarettes. Medjuck, my attorney, spied me with blood-shot eyes, and quickly waved me over. Even in the bright sunshine of this beautiful morning he managed to appear as though he was hiding in shadows. "Get over here quick" he urged, his beady eyes darting around nervously. The doctor looked on distractedly, belched, lit another cigarette, then, just as sudden; eyed me with suspicion.

 I was told by my legal representative that it was up to me to go "under-cover" into the auspices of the university, and in covert fashion, I was to apply for admission to the colleges, under the assumption that I was pursuing a doctorate, sign up for several degree programs, and enter into the schools on an "information gathering" mission. He handed me I.D. and credit cards that said my name was Umbutu Kiwanuka, a Ugandan National, and instructed me to proceed to the admissions office and sign up for every neuro-psychology course offered by the university. He also gave me an attache case and warned me to never let it out of my sight. He then implored me to follow his instructions to the letter as my mission would be instrumental to the litigation he was bringing against the university on behalf of the doctor, and would finally avenge the damage done to his sterling reputation. The doctor smiled at me, nodding slowly, the slightest degree of nefarious pleasure crossing his face.

Medjuck's attache case
As per instructions, I entered into the administration building of the university to pursue admission to the schools, supposedly in pursuit of a degree, but I was not prepared for the dystopian nightmare that is common to the bureaucracy of all schools. I simply could not figure out where, or even how to apply. I wandered fruitlessly through countless offices and corridors, following vague instructions and chilly receptions at every turn. Finally, when I was nearly out of my mind with frustration, I spotted a tiny hand-written sign taped to a door. It read "Apply for admissions here" and had an arrow pointing to this desk...

Chilly Reception

When I approached and was about to speak, the woman behind the desk sternly raised her hand, signalling me to be silent. She was doing a "find-a-word" puzzle and needed absolute concentration. Minutes past as she poured over the rows of letters, one by one, until she finally found the word she was searching for, carefully and triumphantly circling it, then crossed it off the corresponding list. She looked at her work with a measure of pride, put down her pencil, then looked up at me returning to her original hateful demeanor. I began to state my case...

" I wish to gain admission to this university, in pursuit of my doctorate degree, and would like to..."

This is as far as I got because she was rolling her eyes so dramatically, and looking to the side with such a degree of disgusted sarcasm that I was simply intimidated mute. She informed me that she would not help me. She could help me, she admitted, but just didn't feel like it. I was told that there was a volunteer student liaison set up in the main rotunda of the university and it was their job to help prospective students navigate the admissions process. She sighed heavily, as though lowering herself to actually speak to me had burdened her so that she was completely worn out, through her torpor she glared momentarily, then shot a wizened, crooked finger straight past me and at the door, meaning I should leave. Now!

Some time later, when I had located the "rotunda", or open mall that connects the various schools and colleges that make up the university, I made my way to a small table manned by this fellow, a student-volunteer who was there to help people like me. Frankly I was relieved and excited at the promise of finally making some headway in my new academic career. I stepped right up and declared "I want to get my degree, I want to sign up for this university!" Alas, my optimism was not to last.

"Why would you want to do that?" He asked, grinning a smarmy grin. "This is one of the shittiest schools around, there's better colleges that advertise on matchbooks, man." Still grinning he was shaking his head and looking at me with unmasked derision.

Wise-Ass Volunteer

"That doesn't matter!" I insisted, "I want to get my doctorate, and this is the university for me! I've already looked at a lot of schools, and none of the colleges have what this university has to offer!" I hoped he wouldn't question me about the specifics of my bold statement, because I had no idea of what I was talking about, but I got lucky, he had already given up on me and pawned me off by directing me to booth #437 in the auditorium, where I would find what I was looking for. They were having an "admissions fair" and I could proceed from there.

Unfortunately, when I finally located booth #437, it seemed as though I had been given bad information. I found that it was the admissions counter for one of the colleges distance learning degree schools of business run out of India, and no one there could even speak English! This didn't stop them from handing me brochures written in Urdu, offering me complimentary barfi, and enticing me to sign my name to a contract on a clipboard, with the offer of a free long distance phone card as a reward for enrollment. I had to physically shoo them away like flies, and make for my escape through a nearby fire exit.

Foreign Delegation
 Upon exiting the auditorium, I found myself, by fluke, to be at the only helpful admin. office I had visited all day and in the entirety of the university itself. Here, hidden behind a furnace room were some truly dedicated individuals, ready and eager to help me on my way. Finally!

At least someone's got their shit together

 I was given a detailed map and instructions to one of the colleges of the university where admissions into my specifically chosen doctorate degree programs were to attend, and I was to make haste because there was an alumni association presentation and luncheon in progress and if I hurried I could catch most of it. Great news! I wasted no time in making my way to this well appointed building complex...

More "Brutalism"

I really was in luck! I entered and found many vibrant faces, students hungry for knowledge, teachers passionate about molding young minds, and esteemed graduates of the Alma Mater, all seated in a large conference room, waiting for the presentation to start. I found a place at a table with some other members of the student body and watched eagerly as the proceedings were about to begin.

Hungry for Knowledge
An "In-Depth" Seminar
Professional Presentations
This part got sort of long winded
More presenters
Awards were given, Speeches made
  The whole thing went on for hours. Literally. It was so mind-numbingly boring, I could not follow a word, and kept nodding off to sleep, but just as I had been lulled into a complete trance, I was awoken with the news that the presentations were done, and now we would be treated to a buffet lunch, completely free, and entirely on the university 's tab. Fill yer boots!

Who says there's no free lunch?
delectable comestibles
"Hey buddy, leave some for the rest of us!!!"
2nds, 3rds, 4ths, and 5ths
  I had worked up such an appetite, running all around the colleges and schools of the university, trying desperately to gain admission and pursue my doctorate degree, that frankly, I wound up making quite a pig of myself at the buffet. I filled several plates with mystery meat and other unidentifiable free foodstuffs, eating every morsel, and only stopping when the kitchen staff carted away the hot-tables and the janitorial staff began vacuuming around me. I can take a hint, even if I was the very last to leave.

While I was making my way out of the schools campus, mission accomplished for today, I noticed that there was some sort of a commotion going on around one of the colleges. Police cars were everywhere, parked willy-nilly in the road, campus security, cops and ERT rushing all about urgently. It is a good thing that there was all this confusion and distraction going on because I had eaten so much spicy (and kinda unsanitary) greasy food, that I was rudely struck with an immediate need to go to the bathroom, and since there was no toilet nearby, I could discretely do my business behind one of the many cop cars parked in the way, and hopefully evade immediate detection by using the chaos of this security situation as distraction from my ablutions.

Immediate Evacuation in Effect
 
 Relieved, I continued on my way, seeing the police in action, trying to figure out what they were responding to, and as I watched this scene unfolding in an adjacent field, I couldn't help feeling that I had forgotten something...

Cops in action
It wasn't until I was safely at home and watching the six o'clock news that I found out that terrorists had left a weapons-grade multi-megaton stink-bomb in an attache case in the main rotunda of the university. It had exploded and permeated the whole campus with such a horrible rotten egg/fart smell that industrial strength fans and a tanker-truck of Lysol had to be employed to diminish the pong. Until they could get the smell to go away and find the culprits, the university would remain evacuated, and be closed indefinitely. "What luck!" I thought, "My first day of school, and already a holiday!" It doesn't get better than this. Then, when I saw the security footage from the university, broadcast on the news, I suddenly realized where I had left the attache case that my lawyer had given me..."Oops!"

My mom always said I'd be on TV one day

More Legal Entanglements and Litigations Pending

 After I had only slightly recovered from the previous adventures with my lawyer, he called me early the next morning.

  Dizzy and still smarting from my surgery, I made my way downtown to the shmate district and the legal offices of my attorney, "Double-Double" Medjuck once again. My wound, and the many staples and sutures holding it together, ached, and was still so raw I could not but even gingerly touch the side of my head.

Oh My Aching Head!

 When I arrived, my attorney was there, joined by his brother; the doctor, both seated on the far side, behind a giant oak desk. There was no time to waste getting right down to business. We were going to bring about litigation! This was a crime so heinous that it had incredible legal ramifications, would set new legal precedent and  go down throughout history, in the annals of litigation, here, to for, now, and forever afterwards.

  As my lawyer spoke, his brother, the good doctor, sat motionless and silent by his side, hands folded and eyes lowered. My legal council went on, "There can be no question, we must sue!" He brought his fist down to the table only to stop just short of touching it, "But..." he pauses..."Litigation, is expensive." He sort of shrugs his shoulders and looks back at his brother, the doctor.


My Medical & Legal Representation

 I'm confuse. My head's killing me. Like really, there's something seriously wrong with my melon, this hack doctor has opened up my brains and rattled them for good, we should totally sue (or "bring about litigation" to quote Medjuck) but even in my state of diminished acuity, I still can't help thinking..." Is it really such a good idea to have the person you plan on bringing suit against sit in with you on your consultation?" I look at the doctor and he has been staring at me the whole time. He's looking right through me, in fact, near boiling with rage.

"ENOUGH!" he explodes, interrupting the attorney and pounding his mighty fist into the furniture, shaking the  entire building. "Enough of this insignificance! Puny details! Trivialities! Just get to the heart of the matter, man!
Tell him!" fanning his hands at me and looking disgusted.


The Doctor Takes The Stand

 Medjuck, ever the professional, picks up as though on queue, and slithers right into mode, "As I was stating, litigation is a costly process, and for this we need capital. Funds, monies, currency, and/or any assets or luxury items you may posses at this time and could be easily converted into cash." He's smiling at me now. "I suppose you have insurance coverage? A policy you could cash in?" He's talking very sweetly to me now, licking his lips, "Maybe you could take out a mortgage on your house? Or a second mortgage? Possibly a third?"
"You see," he continues, almost graven with seriousness, "We simply cannot let the university get away with this appalling miscarriage of justice..."


Hallowed Halls of Learning

 Again the doctor gets excited and cuts in abruptly, "They LAUGHED at me at the Sorbonne! RIDICULED me in Vienna! They Scoffed at my theories at University Heidelberg! I WILL NOT STAND FOR IT! They must pay! THEY WILL PAY!"

"Don't Think You Won't Pay!"

  This doctor has really got issues, he's making me kind of uncomfortable, and what on earth does the university have to do with anything? He's looking at me in a very strange way. He extends his hand towards me and looks over at his brother, and legal council. "We shall bring thee specimen to the university and show it to them!" He's pointing at me like I'm a rat in a cage. "Here is the proof of my genius, we take him and bring litigation against the university for the defamation they perpetrated against my peerless reputation. When we present the specimen (again, pointing at me) of my neuro-surgical artistry, they will crumble at my feet and grovel as I ascend to my throne of honor and immortality where I rightfully belong."

"An Impassioned Speech"

   All three of us are silent for a few moments, it really was a pretty impassioned speech, and my attorney, Medjuck is staring into the middle-distance, cribbing mental notes for later. Then, just as quickly, he's right back to the pressing matters at hand; funding. He's got papers already drawn up and contracts ready for me to sign. It's no bother at all, really, and I should be honored to be part of such an historic legal proceeding, so I hand over the keys to my mortgage, sign over my insurance coverage to the doctor, and enjoy the luxury of the rarefied air that surrounds such titans of their respective industries. And enjoy it while I could, I did, because all too soon, I was being hastily shown the exit, my attorney growling into my ear as he strong-armed me towards the door, "Make sure you show up to the university tomorrow at 8 am, sharp, if you know what's good for you." and just as I was about to ask him if I should wear a suit and tie, he slammed the door in my face, our meeting over. From behind the closed door, I could hear the lock bolting shut, then laughter, so obviously, things were going pretty well with my legal/medical team on the home front, so I tried to remember my way home, and hobbled with confidence and (what's left) of my mind put at ease, Lady Justice herself as my guide.

My Mind at Ease, Justice as My Guide.

"A truly wealthy man has both a doctor on call and an attorney on retainer" - Quote; Unknown.





FULL COVERAGE of my MEDICAL EMERGENCY

 I got a call, the other day, from the Front Desk of my Attorney, "Double-Double" Medjuck. His secretary had phoned to inform me that I was to waste no time in getting myself immediately to the offices of his employer's Law Practice downtown, post-haste, and without delay, as it was a matter of great urgency and time-sensative importance, and also, was of such a "delicate" nature that neither could he discuss it over the phone.

Reception Desk
Frankly I was a little worried. I've done so many ridiculous things I tried to remember which of my escapades could have resulted in litigation pending towards me? There's quite a checklist, personal injuries, destruction of property, criminal endangerment, recklessness. That's just the stuff I can remember, usually, I black out and god knows what I get up to then, anyways I'm right out the door and down the office of my Lawyer. He can sort me out.

I get to the building, with his suite of well-appointed offices situated atop an ambulance dispatch service (all drivers give out his cards) and I hurry up the fire-escape which "doubles" as an entrance (my pun) In the reception area, his secretary, who was reading a well-thumbed Michael Moorcock novel, looks up at me like he doesn't know why I'm here, or what I'm doing there.
"I'm here," I announce,"I got here as fast as I could, what's the deal? Where's Doubles?" I'm out of breath and all excited.
Secretary-boy is nonplussed. "He's not here. I don't know when he's coming back" Then he looks kinda disappointed at what has to come next. "You can have a seat over there and wait for him" he waves his paperback wetly at the stackable chair over in the corner, and turns his back to ignore me, looking at his computer screen for a second, scratching at a zit on his earlobe briefly, then shuffling the mouser around pointlessly for 3.2 seconds until finally resuming reading his much more engrossing book.

"an engrossing read"
   I sat there for a while tapping my feet in time to the failing florescents and looking around the dingy office. I slowly took my time, when reading the one magazine he had on hand, a copy of the International Brotherhood of Dry Cleaning Employees Newsletter,and  biding my time, I savored every article and photoplay, reading through every classified, studying the front and back covers: both, intently, whieghing the complete article in my hands, and eventually, ultimately, viewing it from all angles, before tossing it, and settling in to just sit there impatiently-like with arms folded and huff and wheeze loudly, staring at the back of the secretary-guy's head.

  Something in his book made him laugh a bit and I laughed too, a fake laugh, because I had no idea what he was reading. He turned around and looked at me, meaning that I should "shut up"

  An Hour, and forty-five minutes later, the door to my lawyers private office opens. He ignores me and addresses his secretary only, all business; "Send him in, I'll see him now."

Inside Medjuck is in a serious mood, as my attorney he must inform me that I have problems. The problem I have is that his revenues are down, and as my legal council it is his duty to inform me that something must be done to remedy this situation or there will be dire legal ramifications for us all, but mostly me. Then I would be on my own, he informs. I'm not an expert in legalese but this sounds bad, I'm confused and I don't know what to do, but fortunately my Lawyer is the best in the business and he has a solution readily at hand.

"I want you to pay a visit to this doctor" he says, writing down a name and address. "He works very close with my organization, and is the tops in his field. I want you to do exactly as he tells you. But I'll warn you, he's eccentric. A brilliant doctor, but not really my type of person..." at this his voice drops off sourly, and as he hands me the paper, he grimly adds "even though ... he is ... my brother..." and with this he looks away in disgust, verklempt, and bidding me to exit his sanctum with pained, curt, flicks of his hand.

So I high-tail it across town to the offices of one Kleinholz Medjuck, Doctor of Neurosurgery, the mysterious brother who I've only now just learned the existence of. Its on a fancy street, with stone mansions, so he's obviously done pretty well for himself, and if I hadn't been so comforted by the sheer wealth of the surroundings, and reassured in the trust of my impeccable legal council, I might have been a little put off by the good doctor's appearance at first.

der gute Doktor
   He had an unfortunate and pronounced nervous tick, seizing up in a full body spasm every 30 seconds or so. Also whenever he had to read something he held the paper right up to his face about 2 millimeters from his eyeballs. Despite these cosmetic drawbacks, his bedside manner quickly put me at ease. He told me a long rambling story about "The War" and his devotion to Science, and frankly it was all a little difficult to understand, but relaxing and soothing enough and this MD seemed like a real class act so I agreed then and there and more-or-less consented, when he proposed, triumphantly, that surgery, immediate surgery was to be the call of the day. Before I knew it he leaped on me with his syringe and that's the last thing I remember.

I guess I'm OK, I don't feel any worse for wear, having just had major surgery and all, but for some strange reason, every time I see a picture of a hippopotamus I smell bananas.
  I'm not really sure what procedure was performed on me, but Doctor Medjuck did kindly provide me with a video taped cassette recording of the whole operation, which he had specially commissioned the incomparable; Vangelis ... to specially compose an original soundtrack for.
This guy has connections!


A personalized VHS record of my ground-breaking brain surgery, with original score composed specifically for the occasion by...
The  Incomparable Vangelis