Tuesday, June 07, 2022

Soul Insurance (Part 2 Enter the Claims Adjuster)

Adjudication begins... Part 2 of Soul Insurance

II. Enter the Claims Adjuster

Meanwhile, the claims adjuster had already started to make his way to the plains
He threw a few changes of clothes
   in the bag he used for this business
Laying waste to a people could sometimes be messy, as god was his witness
Other than the blood, it was mostly
   the tears of the widowed that left stains

Thus he packed a few extra pods of detergent,
   he placed them in a ziploc bag
He was trying out a new brand,
   the new formula Tide cleaned better, they bragged
He always carried spares of the latest creations
   that could pass through customs
These days regulations had been relaxed,
   and one could travel with these substances

For his luggage, he had decided to try out one of those sturdy bags
Plastic, lightweight, it was quite practical for the upcoming task
Wrapped with a little tape around it, whether cellotape or duct tape
It would be a good signal to all that it was now time for them to pack

Being rugged and functional, he was quite sure that it wouldn't split
Before he arrived at his destination, and gave the cease and desist
The bag could take being manhandled by the underpaid bag handlers
And its distinctive plaid was appreciated by many across the border

He'd used them repeatedly
   when dealing with those who lived in the torrid zone
Back then, the punishment of choice
   was merely being forced to leave one's home
This was an earlier time, what they wistfully called their lost decades
A little presumptuous of them,
   they had even given the bags a nickname

Nyame's claims adjuster sculpture

He would start in the east, Chwedru, between the sea and the lagoon
The Wan tribe were long accustomed, close companions, to misfortune
Hard working, sporting blank faces, some labeled them orientals
Beasts of burden, they behaved as if sleep was merely incidental

They were up-and-coming
   and constantly kept harkening back to their golden age
It was almost like a tic, this nostalgia for when they ruled the world stage
The faded glories of empires and dynasties, when they were number one
But for centuries now, they were second best, consigned to the utilitarian

If he had to adjust that lot,
   he could draw on their long history of oppression
And weigh that against their relatively recent state of exploitation
Their rise as the world's bread basket, home of the big tribe that could
Underestimate them at your peril, the song went:
   "Don't let me be misunderstood"

jo bag: ghana must go in South Africa

Nyame's direction was sometimes ambiguous
   and, in practice, hard to measure
Despite the terms of employment,
   the adjuster didn't care much for adventure
The exact nature of his adjudication was normally left to his discretion
He enjoyed his work, especially the nuts and bolts of the investigation

When you have an arrangement, as the gods did,
   incorporated as The Company
You were all but guaranteed to encounter a troubling lack of consistency
The body-soul duality was one thing, but try dealing with the complexity
Of the cosmology they'd now come to,
   and the aspects of their Holy Trinity

He knew that Odomankoma would advocate for humanity as a matter of course
But when Nyame was this displeased, normally all bets would be off
That left Nyankopon, who sometimes tempered the wrath of Nyame, his evil eye
He'd have to sound out Nyankopon before adjusting, his opinion would break the tie

He preferred working for conquerors,
   their catechism
was understood rather easily
None of the ambiguity of The Company,
   precise orders akin to the military
Black and white, there were no shades of gray
One wrong move and you would be made to pay

The organization of the gods' corporation
   left a lot to be desired, of course
But then, you could hardly complain successfully about the gods
That was a home truth acknowledged almost universally
For they might deal with your impertinence rather brutally

Although, there was always a loophole,
   there was the whistleblower provision
But, due to their being all knowing, it was hard to avoid retaliation
He remembered a previous agent,
   who had gone through the official channels
Without any fear that his very existence could be duly canceled

He'd lodged his complaint against, get this, Nyame of all the gods
The agent would later rue his mistake
   and wish he'd remained anonymous
The adjuster had never had to resort
   to testing the system like that poor sod
A betting man, he would never lay a wager
   in a game with those long odds

The adjuster had become a little jaded
   having to constantly deal with deceit
So he had inscribed the bag with his new monogram in a fit of conceit
GRIST was his new calling card, he would lay it out like a destroyer:

G stood for the gods that had now become his regular employers
R for the review of the scrolls that duly reported the malice
I for his inspections of the actual damage, their extent that is
S for speaking to the witnesses, almost all of whom were known dissemblers
T for the quiet talks with the gods after dispensing his brand of justice

The part of his job he enjoyed most was the tales of the witnesses
The lazy fictions they proffered, and the rare, rather great, inventions
Spun out of whole cloth these last, their patterns of exchange intriguing
But a leopard cannot change its spots, they'd ultimately fail at misleading

There was one thing the adjuster admired about the humans,
   their hubris couldn't be denied
They expected consistency, that every day the sun would rise in the sky
His mammy wagon arrived, it was on time, and left just a minute after two
The slogan at the top read Sea Never Dry. He chuckled, if only they knew

Sea Never Dry

The Claims Adjuster, a playlist

A soundtrack for this note, he means business. (spotify version)

Soul Insurance (Index)

A covidious folktale
  1. Ananse and the Chief's Scribe
  2. Enter the Claims Adjuster
  3. An Audience with the Linguist
  4. Pity the Mink
  5. Short Sale
  6. Excessive Liabilities
  7. Premiums Due
  8. Soul Insurance, a playlist
  9. Indemnity Provisions
  10. Full Circle
  11. Enforcement Actions
  12. The Die is Cast

This folktale is part of a series: In a covidious time.

Next: An Audience with the Linguist

File under: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Writing log: Part 2 March 22, 2021

No comments: