I´m one of those people who have never seen an octopus. Not even at the zoo when my parents took me when I was little, at least not that I remember, and in hindsight it´s probably better that way. On TV, and on the net, yeap, alright, but that´s about it when it comes to my experience with them. Or that is what I thought.
Matthew is your typical high school graduate whose life is a big party. Booze and girls, and dreams of becoming a pro-basketballer, who is leaving Odessa, Texas coz the grass is always greener on the other side. That kind of young, stupid, innocent guy we all know and have met in our lives. Sometimes we are that kind of guy or gal, but who is to blame when the own town is too small, and the world so big and interesting?
How he ends up in the jungle of Nicaragua as a member of a counter-revolutionary unit you ask? A few days ago I would have answered, 42. Now I have to say the answer is The Octopus. You know, the one you can´t grasp. The shadowy part of the government, the bankers, the ones who really, truly rule the world. The Rothschilds and the Clintons. Those are the ones who are responsible that your life is not what you think it is. Or those of Matthew, poor fool. And for most parts you will never know why you end up where you are, or what friends you have. Sorry to shatter your delusions. It´s all there, you only have to look around, but be careful that you are not gunned down at some point. No, not because you know too much, don´t be silly, that would be a tinfoil hat theory.
The scariest part, the most paranoid one, was a small detail. When Matthew, from within the story, directly talks to me, the reader. Hey, I know it´s a weird story, and it´s cool if you don´t believe me, but there are books written about that stuff. Check it out and make up your own mind. I paraphrase, but that´s the gist of it. It made my head spin, and I felt I am in the middle of some mind game. What is truth after all? Right now I am inclined to say some fringe explanation of a string of events, questionable at best, or authored by some puppet master at worst.
The real genius is in the mix of verifiable facts, like the Sandinista regime in Nicaragua and their counterparts, the Contras, Oliver North and a long line of US government officials with their own interests, and a story of a young man who wants to believe in some just cause. The mix is what makes the ´One Arm Of The Octopus´ story so ... no, not sexy, not cool, but paranoid. We all are Matthew.
The girl you met at a party? Sure, she just happens to be there and you got friendly with her, coz why not? That is what parties are for, right? Are you really, really sure? Ask yourself the next time you meet someone the ever so often quoted, and still true, question, cui bono? It´s unlikely it is you who benefits. Just saying.
If you still believe that things just happen then I can´t help you. Some things do happen, probably, and some things ... don´t. Coincidences? Never laughed more.
A typical Bunker. Or bonkers. And so very, very good. Now go ahead, make an informed decision. *giggles like crazy*
4,5 tinfoil hat stars for ´One Arm Of The Octopus´ by Michael Bunker
(Legal disclaimer: I received a free copy of Tales Of Tinfoil from the editor, David Gatewood)