The Return of Bendysseus

Sing, oh Muse, of the man of many ghetto-fabulous devices, who wandered LAX of the land of California and Incheon of the land of Korea, doing so after sacking the shops and wineries of the famous Citadel of Oregon, taking with him many treasures and presents. Many were the security offices he saw and varied the airline representatives’ minds he came to know, and many woes did he suffer upon the airways, seeking to win his own return tickets and the security clearance of his comrades.

Mighty Father Delta and Queen of Olympus, the matchless Korean Embassy, did allow Bendysseus to come near his home, saying “your proof of full vaccination and promise to sacrifice a fat PCR test to the gods once you’ve returned to the land of Korea have pleased us.” And so Bendysseus flew as if upon Hermes’ winged sandals from the Citadel of Oregon to the land of LAX.

Upon his coming, the goddess Asiana Airlines went to heaven, calling to Father Delta and Queen Korean Embassy, saying “oh most exalted gods, Bendysseus can never go home, for he has passed by the shrines of my nymphs, paying no homage, neither did he offer unto me a sacrifice of a fat Rapid Antigen Test.”   

Father Delta and Queen Korean Embassy looked to the Goddess Asiana Airlines and spoke, saying “our problem is he no longer.” And so the Goddess Asiana Airlines flew down from the heavens and took the form of a ticketing agent, saying “goes ye no further, oh Bendysseus. Thou has paid no homage to the nymphs or shrines of LAX, nor has thou offered in sacrifice a fat Rapid Antigen Test. Stay ye in the lands of LAX forever, and think ye no more of home. Put your mind instead to enjoying the call of the Siren Cardi B, for she sings the sweetest song in all the world, calling it ‘Wet Ass Pussy.’ Think ye of the nymph Amber Heard, wearing a red wig and coming from the ocean, freshly single and looking for a new hero. Become you a suitor to this nymph and she shall make your name famous in the courts of law for all time.”

Bendysseus wept bitterly, saying to the goddess “oh Asiana Airlines, goddess most fair, I have eaten the kimchi of Wal-Mart and recoiled in horror. Saw I the cost of treating even the most minor wounds, and I wept bitterly. And so do I long for the land of my thesis presentation, my cookery, my insurance policy and the minstrels with whom I compose poetry to the gods. No nymph or Siren can for me charm such as to take the weight of separation from my heart.”

The Goddess Asiana Airlines, hearing these words, grew wrathful and cursed Bendysseus to wander LAX, saying “get thee out from the zone of security and traverse the basement level where brigands and madmen live. Surely they will take your treasures, surely you will lay in the dust, surely your body and robes will come to stink and you will despair of your home forever more.”

Bendysseus fell upon his knees, tears staining his cheeks. He improvised a phone charger, for this was not the land of 220V phone chargers, and prayed to the god Hanatour. Hanatour did answer his calls, complaining only shortly about the time difference and how sweet his sleep had been. “Save me, oh Hanatour,” Bendysseus cried out. “For you vouchsafed my return to the sacred land of Korea and ever have I honored your name with sacrifices of fat credit card numbers and positive reviews upon the altar of my SNS.”

“You speak truth,” the god Hanatour said. “Oh Bendysseus, and I shall forget you not. However, you must pass the night among the madmen and brigands of LAX, laying upon the dust and weeping as your body and robes come to stink. Hold fast your treasures and sleep not, for in the morning I will show you how to sacrifice a Rapid Antigen Test. Lose not your treasure, though, for the sacrifice is dear, and you shall not please the gods with any less than $80.”

Bendysseus heard the words of the god Hanatour and sat upon the dust, amongst the madmen and brigands of LAX. They came to him, filled with the mania of methamphemine and the sloth of valium, they spoke as if possessed and looked hungrily upon his treasure. Bendysseus remembered his time living among the park of trailers in the Valley of the Sun in the Land of Nevada. Remember also did he working amongst the brigands at the Mill of Pepper in the Castle of Reno and, sitting upon his treasure, Bendysseus did stair death into the eyes of the brigands of LAX. Their terror was such they would come not near while Bendysseus was awake, but as he had not slept in two and a half days, the brigands kept close watch less the wanderer fall asleep.

Indeed, Bendysseus’ eyes grew heavy and Hypnos, god of sleep, hovered over him. Just as Bendysseus was about to sleep, he prayed to the god Starbucks. “Come to me, oh god, that I might resist the embrace of Hypnos and hold safe my treasure against these brigands and madmen.” The god heard his prayer and took the form of a barista, short and bucolic, who threw open the doors to the Temple of Starbucks even in the midst of LAX. The god in the form of the barista gave unto Ben sacred beans which vivified his spirit and, knowing all, pointed Bendysseus to the Altar of the Rapid Antigen Test. There Bendysseus sacrificed a fat Rapid Antigen Test to the gods and the goddesses. The goddess Asiana Airlines, despairing, said unto the god Hanatour “oh wretched Hanatour, why have you taken from my nymphs and Sirens this victim? Bendysseus may go home, but I curse his treasure and vow before heaven, it will be long before he washes the stink from his body and robes.”

Bendysseus rushed through security and came to the Gate of Asiana Airlines. The goddess, gnashing her teeth, did accept the sacrifice of the Rapid Antigen Test and let him onto the ship for the land of Korea. Bendysseus came upon the ship, robes and body stinking, and did offend the fellow travelers. “Sorry,” said he. “I was laying on the concrete all night in the basement.”

And so the travelers left LAX and ventured over the ocean broad. More vivifying beans of the god Starbucks did Bendysseus eat, for he cannot sleep sitting up. After many hours did the vessel come to Incheon, prosperous port in the land of Korea, whereupon Bendysseus’ fellow travelers from distant Ethiopia did come to the Temple of Immigration.

The Ethiopians, ignorant of the tongue of the people of the land of Korea, knew not which offerings they should make, nor upon which altar they ought to sacrifice. Bendysseus, seeing their distress, did translate between the men of the land of Korea and the travelers from distant Ethiopia, ensuring that the gods of the Temple of Immigration were not moved to wrath, nor were the priests and priestesses offended by the strange customs of the foreigners. Thus did several hours pass and so Bendysseus, coming to the Palace of the Baggage Claim, found not his treasure.   

Bendysseus went to the priestesses of the Sanctum of the Lost and Found, saying “I have travelled long and far, vivified by the beans of the god Starbucks, freed from the grasp of the dread goddess Asiana Airlines. My body and robes do stink, and I wish to take my treasure home that I might share with my thesis advisor, my friends, the minstrels of whose number I include myself and, most of all, with the maiden for whom my heart longs.”

The priestess, hearing these words, wept, saying unto Bendysseus “the spirit of forgetfulness, dull Lethe, came upon the mind of a man of lands unknown. He, leaving his own treasure upon the threshold of the Palace of the Baggage Claim, went away to his own land carrying the treasure of Bendysseus. Many messengers have we sent to the man of lands unknown, but the god Lethe has kept him in stupor, forgetful and dull. Our messengers he hears not and so Bendysseus should go home without his treasure.”

Bendysseus would not move, choosing for himself a stone platform near to the Sanctum of the Lost and Found. There he sat, saying “oh priestess, I shall not go without my treasure. In the land of Korea, one in two men do live in the Province of the Gyeonggi. Therefore I shall stay here, in the Sanctum, which is also in the Province of Gyeonggi. I shall move not, bearing no mind to the stink of my body nor my robes, until the man of lands unknown is freed from the spell of dull Lethe. Neither shall I give the priestesses of the Sanctum of the Lost and Found any peace until they vow before all the gods to send yet more messengers to the man of lands unknown.”

The priestess, tears upon her fair cheeks, did vow before all the gods. She then grasped the edges of her desk and called forth a scribe. The scribe did make for Bendysseus a Property Irregularity Report, asking if she might give to the man of lands unknown the sacred numbers of Bendysseus’ phone. Bendysseus did assent, saying only “remember your vow, oh priestess, for if you do not send another messenger in the morning, or if your messenger should prove faulty, I shall return and sit ever more upon the stones of your Sanctum.”

The priestess did assent, saying only, “go ye Bendysseus to an inn and wash the stink from your body and robes. In the morning shall I send another messenger, strong and full of capitalized letters, to the man of the lands unknown. Unto this man shall I deliver the sacred numbers of the phone of Bendysseus, and Bendysseus shall have no more cause to lay upon the stones of the Sanctum of the Lost and Found, stinking and moldering in his sorrow.”

Bendysseus did then go to the inn of a kindly hermit. From within his chambers Bendysseus did wash the stink from his body, cleaning especially the dust from the stones of the land of LAX. He dipped his feet into the porcelain cauldron and washed from them the grime of travel. He then anointed his arms and shoulders, head and back in the sacred waters of the Province of Geyonggi. Doing so did Bendysseus feel the drunken ecstasy of Dionysus, desiring as he did to wash after so long a journey.

Bendysseus did then reach for his satchel, yearning for the embrace of freshly washed clothes. Then did the Fates remind him that all his laundry, save only the stinking robes of his journey, were bundled together with his treasure, even then taken far from the inn by the man of lands unknown. Bendysseus wept and prayed to Athena, saying “oh grey eyed Athena, beloved of Zeus, come to my aid. I can no longer endure the stink of these robes and the people of the Province of Gyeonggi will not let me leave this inn undressed.”

The goddess heard Bendysseus’ prayer and flew down from Olympus, saying “ever did you sacrifice to me fat thesis projects, Bendysseus. Ever were you faithful in offering to me the finest translations and test-making workshops. However, you unto my priestesses at the Temple of Academia have given little gold, subscribing as you do to but one academic journal. Therefore shall I hear your prayer, but offer unto you only half that which you desire.”

Bendysseus cried out to the goddess, saying “I wish only to wear clean robes, that the scent of my body offendeth not the people of the Province of Gyeonggi. Grant to me, oh goddess, new robes of cotton and polyester that I might go into the Land of Korea without shame. Grant also, goddess, deodorant so that I might forget the horrible smells I did give to my travelling companions these days before.”

“The stink of your robes I shall remove,” grey eyed Athena did say. “But deodorant shall I deny, bundling it as I did with your treasures, even now in the hands of the man of lands unknown. New robes shall I also deny, keeping shut the stores of the clothesmakers on this, a weekend morning. Nay, in place of these I grant the ambrosia called ‘shampoo’ that you might cleanse your stinking robes. Wash them with shampoo in the sacred cauldron of this inn, called in these lands ‘the sink,’ and hang them next to the conditioner of air, that they might dry by the time you awaken.”

Bendysseus heard well the words of the goddess and washed with shampoo his robes in the cauldron called sink, hanging them to dry by the conditioner of air. The goddess then closed the eyes of long-suffering Bendysseus and to him did grant 5 hours of sleep.

Bendysseus awoke and sent forth messengers to the Sanctum of the Lost and Found. The priestess, weary of Bendysseus’ wailing, did vow to send forth yet more messengers to the man of the land unknown. Bendysseus then went to his robes by the conditioner of air and wept, for the conditioner of air ran on a timer, and had dried his robes for one hour only. Thus in wet robes did he venture forth into the land of the Province of Gyeonggi. Finding a crone upon her stool, Bendysseus called out, saying, “oh crone, hast thou the soup of kimchi? I have travelled far and my robes are wet. Sleep have I little and a man of lands unknown has carried off my treasure.”

The crone did give to Bendysseus her soup of kimchi, far surpassing in flavor and nourishment the kimchi of accursed Wal-Mart. From this did the wanderer derive hope and courage, sending again a messenger to the Sanctum of the Lost and Found. Grey-eyed Athena, favoring Bendysseus greatly, lifted from the man of lands unknown the stupor of dull Lethe, and caused him to call Bendysseus’ sacred numbers.

“Come ye to the land of Daejeon,” said the man of the lands unknown. “For I also do live near to the home of Bendysseus. Come that I might return to ye your treasure. Come ye quick, though, that I might go this day to the Province of Gyeonggi where my own treasure lies still within the Sanctum of the Lost and Found.”

Bendysseus did fly from the crone, leaving her rich presents and many thanks. He did send to the priestesses of the Sanctum of the Lost and Found messengers bearing thanks, saying unto the priestesses “thank you so much, you have no idea how much better I feel now.”

Unto the station of trains did Bendysseus go, upon the KTX did he ride, even the wetness of his robes did he forget. Happy was Bendysseus coming so near to home, though the gods had not yet exhausted their wrath.

When the train did come to the blessed fields of Daejeon, Bendysseus went to the Temple of the Oracle called Mokwon University, wishing as he did to retrieve his sacred chariot, gift of the god Hyundai. Woe unto Bendysseus, for while he adventured in the lands of Oregon, sacking many shops and wineries, School-Boardius, god of all administration and fundraising, did overthrow the parking system at the Temple of the Oracle called Mokwon University, taking away the men as prisoners and setting in their place automatons. Thus did Bendysseus ride his chariot to the gates of the Temple of the Oracle called Mokwon University, calling out for the man-servant of that place.

“The servant have I taken prisoner,” sayeth the automaton. “No longer shall Bendysseus see him. Neither shall Bendysseus take his chariot, given by the god Hyundai, from the parking lots of this Temple of the Oracle called Mokwon University lest he pay unto the god School-Boardius 80,000 shining won.”

“Silence automaton,” said Bendysseus. “Honorest ye not the pledges of your god School-Boardius? The man-servant whom you carried off was also pledged to this god, and it was with him my vows were exchanged.”

“Fair is thy point,” sayeth the automaton. “Givest not 80,000 shining won, only send to me 20,000 shining won and I shall let you pass.”

Bendysseus thought to debate with the automaton yet more, but grey-eyed Athena spoke to him, saying “Bendysseus, thou art crabby as hell, having slept five hours in four days. Picketh they battles wisely, oh wanderer, giving to the automaton 20,000 shining won. Go then to the man from the lands unknown, taking your treasure. Go into your home that you might bathe properly, spread onto your body deodorant, change your robes and sleep much.”

Bendysseus listened well the words of the goddess, giving to the automaton 20,000 shining won and taking from the Temple of the Oracle called Mokwon University his chariot. To the man of the lands unknown did he ride, gathering to himself the treasure for which he’d so long searched.

Into his home did triumphant Bendysseus thus go, bathing himself properly, putting on himself deodorant and sleeping for the next 15 hours. Only when he woke did the muses come to him, saying, “Bendysseus, write ye a poem in the style of the Odyssey about airport security, baggage claim and airline companies. Surely your companions the minstrels will wish to know.”

This Bendysseus did and to his blog uploadeth the result.


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