Snarky newcomer opines, basely

Phantom menacing

Posted 3/26/24

Tommy Ruttlesberry was excited. “They were lined up right over there by Smalltown Inn, you know? Maybe 15 all together carrying I don’t know how many Mexicans—or I don’t know …

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Snarky newcomer opines, basely

Phantom menacing


Tommy Ruttlesberry was excited. “They were lined up right over there by Smalltown Inn, you know? Maybe 15 all together carrying I don’t know how many Mexicans—or I don’t know what are we supposed to call them now, Latinos?—maybe there were some kids too I couldn’t tell, but all illegal immigrants, I guess. There was some guy from the government, I think. He had a clipboard. And I saw him give a check to the motel people... And then they just weren’t there. Even the buses and the drivers. Even the Federal guy with the clipboard! I kinda thought those material things wouldn’t be raptured but you know god moves in mysterious ways. Sure didn’t expect those types, govs and illegals, would be the ones to get raptured first! Guess they got religion on their way up here or something. I suppose you’d be coming to god, too, if you got here from one of those—uh, what Trump said—countries.

“I just hope I’m good enough to make the next round.”

A few blocks away, scattered among the empty storefronts plastered with For Rent signs, the storekeepers of the quirky craft stores and antique emporiums and the homemade ice cream “shoppe” on the main street, all with Help Wanted signs pasted in their windows, were on edge after hearing about the buses. The local Facebook and Nextdoor pages were full of rants and fears. 

-They’re walking though the town now, looks like they are heading north. 

-Not the Smalltown Inn, but the Bland River Motel. 

-I heard the Fancywaters Resort.

-Man, you’d think they’d be spending money on us instead of shipping and housing those illegals up at the Fancywaters Resort! 

-Has anyone asked the police what they know? 

-We know they don’t tell us anything! No one told us about those crimes over on Major Road!

-It’s all part of their plan! Those people first, they move here, bringing their drugs and nonfamily values, taking over the local government, then they look the other way when the government brings in these people to vote illegally! 

-They don’t care about us! And they’re sending them Here after those people from There all moved Here. We know why.

-Uh, no, I don’t know! Why? 

-Hey that isn’t about Weather and Road Conditions! I’m reporting your post to the Group Administrator. 

One or two storekeepers kept looking up and down the streets, almost eagerly, to see if any strangers appeared, who might, just might, have asked for jobs. But no one came. 

Perhaps Tommy was right, for along with the buses, their occupants and even the drivers, all social media mentions of their arrival which had brought the town to a standstill also vanished from the internet as if they had never existed. Except for a few lingering screen shots which the heavenly hordes rapturing the worthy must have failed to notice.

Something clattered on the now empty street. A store clerk and a customer cautiously inched out of a door to look. The clerk stepped off the sidewalk and crossed to the middle, bent down, and picked up something that seemed to have fallen from the sky.

A clipboard.

snarky, newcomer, opines, basely, phantom, menacing,


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