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Tuesday, February 4, 2014

"Success..." 'Bettejo Dux' (Classic Wednesday)

Bettejo Dux has lived on the cosmic Garden Island of Kaua'i for over 40 years.
Bettejo is a regular columnist in the Garden Island news and is the author of the
famed novella, "The Scam."



“Who are all those people?”

I shrugged. “Don’t know.”

“You don’t know?”

“That’s what I said.”

“Your house is filled with people you don’t know?”

I looked around, “I recognize some of them. Maybe they brought  friends.”

“Better they brought  libation, you’re gonna run out.”

” Got plenty of cheese and crackers,” I smiled at a cute couple of guys with six packs in hand. “Loaves and fishes…”

“…and wine to water.”

“That’s water to wine, dunce. Don’t get her started. Heard that story a dozen time.”

“Wanna hear it again?”

“No.Nope. Negative.  I suspect  they’re here to celebrate her success,” that was my Editor. The one with the dog who was dancing with my grown up puppy, Boots.

“Success. I truly despise that word. “


“It’s so sibilant. It hisses. It’s reptilian.”

“Tell that to Madonna.”

“That’s what I mean.  Look around at so many of the people who are successful today and hold your nose.”

“Whatever. Isn’t this supposed to be a happy, healthy occasion?”

“Well, one must, on occasion, consider the ‘dark’ side in order  to take pleasure, be happy and healthy, on  the light side.”

I smiled at this young woman- a fellow writer- who was traveling the long hard road to publication and whispered. “I couldn’t have said it better. There’s some good cold Chardonnay  in that round black table- looking thing that’s really an ice chest. Cork’s popped. Grab an opaque plastic glass and pour under cover.”

Everyone within hearing distance giggled and made a dash. I tripped one guy and he dropped a slice of pizza. Boots and Obama, my Editor’s dog, sniffed and ran to snatch it. They shared.

“I’m thinking of Paris Hilton. Her parent spent a fortune hiring some guy to make a celebrity out of her. He said it was not easy. Celebrity equals success? Come on.”

“Success. Celebrity. Success. Celebrity. And all that Hilton money.”

“Well she got successfully hatched into a wealthy family. I’ll take that kind’a success.Next time”

I know now why I never liked this guy.  The one who splattered cheese and pepperoni pizza. “Advantage over. Edge. Upper whip-hand. Ascendancy. Mastery. Expugnation…”

“I really like that word,” said the would- be writer. “‘To erase or strike out’.”

“Go on…”

“…Conquest. Victory. Subdual. Subjugation. Nothing pretty here.”

“Come off well.  Colors flying. Make progress. Surmount. Triumph.”

“Everything Paris Hilton didn’t do.”

“But Madonna did. Wasn’t she great in Evita?”

“I’m gonna stop inviting writers to my parties. You guys are word addicts,” I turned my back and sauntered off to chat with the darling guys with the beer. I hoped they were surfers. They looked like surfers. Long hair. Great bodies. Tan. Maybe they’d share a beer. I propped my shilelagh against the wall, grabbed a platter of organic potato chips and home-grown tomato-Vitamixed-spicey dip. “This is hot,” I smiled.

“You’re hot.”


“You finished the book? Can we proof read? We’re gonna be writers when we grow up.”

“What’s your take on success?” I sighed.

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