KEYWORDS: boat, nobody, hamburgers, lights

Hamburger Boat, The

David Berg

—MO March 16, 1975 NO.340—GP

A Dream of America?

P.O. Box 31, London WC2E 7LX, England or GPO Box 3141‚ San Juan‚ Puerto Rico 00936

I had a funny picture in my sleep like a cartoon:

1. PRESIDENT FORD AND THE WORLD'S LEADERS WERE ALL LITTLE BOYS ABOUT FIVE OR SIX YEARS OLD FIGHTING OVER THEIR TOYS, BUT THEIR TOYS WERE REAL ROCKETS AND BOMBS! Brezhnev was telling Ford, "Now we've all given up our rockets, so you gotta given up your rockets!—We don't wanna have any war. We don't wanna hurt anybody. You gotta give up your rockets!"

2. BUT FORD WAS SAYING, "I DON'T CARE WHAT THE REST OF YOU DO, I'M NOT GIVING UP ANY OF MY ROCKETS!" So Brezhnev and these other people started walking off with Ford's rockets. He and Brezhnev started struggling over this one rocket, till Ford finally got it away from Brezhnev and took it back and defiantly stuck it back in its hole!

3. THEN IN MY DREAM I WAS WRITING THIS BIG LETTER like one gigantic greeting card that you fold shut and the Letter was inside. I had made nice little neat notations, corrections and comments all they way around the border and I gave it to Laban, one of our artists to correct and fix. I'd worked so hard to make all those corrections. So by and by he brought it back to me.

4. WE WERE LIVING ON SOME KIND OF SHIP and he brought it back to me but he was acting silly and sort of frivolous and joking and clowning, so he just tossed it to me and laughed and ran off. He was like a little boy too.

5. I OPENED IT UP AND I WAS SO SAD because he hadn't made any of the corrections, he hadn't done any of the things he was supposed to do, and I was feeling so sad like nobody really cared. I just couldn't believe he would return it to me like that, not paying any attention to all those notes and corrections I'd made, but giving it back to me just like it was.

6. BUT HE LAUGHED AND THOUGHT IT WAS FUNNY. I was so sad after that, as it seemed like nobody cared, until Little Joy came along and kissed me, and that was real nice! But I was still so sad because nobody seemed to pay any attention to what was going on. Everybody was doing their own thing‚ and they didn't seem to notice everything was going wrong.

7. THEN THERE WAS THIS BIG TOY AIRPLANE MADE OUT OF WOOD, and Brezhnev was standing like a little boy in knee pants underneath the wing between the fuselage and one of the big motors on a sort of a platform like he was one of the mechanics or the ground crew. The plane was an American plane, another one of Ford's toys. All of a sudden it roared and took off and left Brezhnev just standing there surprised!

8. THERE SEEMED TO BE SOME KIND OF BIG EMERGENCY GOING ON because nobody had any lights. Maybe that plane symbolised that America's going to strike first—what they call a preemptive strike. I mean it was all like they were being so silly!

9. LITTLE BOYS PLAYING GAMES, WAR GAMES! It made me feel so sad that everybody was acting so bad. They weren't paying any attention to my Letter. Little Joy seemed sorry for me, but she didn't seem to be all that interested. Everybody seemed to be too busy playing their own games.

10. THE COOK AND SOMEONE ELSE ON ONE OF THESE BOATS WERE FIGHTING OVER THIS LITTLE PIECE OF MEAT, like meat was real scarce. Yet as I walked along the pier and peered down at each one of these boats like yachts, even though they didn't have any lights they were all cooking hamburgers!

11. I THOUGHT, " WELL! THAT'S JUST LIKE THE AMERICANS! It wouldn't matter if there was an international war going on, a great emergency, it wouldn't matter if there weren't any lights or water‚ they would still be determined to get their hamburgers!" And it all made me feel so sad 'cause it seemed like nobody cared about anything that was really important.

12. EVERYBODY WAS JUST SELFISHLY DOING THEIR OWN THING, cooking their hamburgers, and it seemed like they couldn't have cared less if the whole world went to hell! I felt so bad I was on the verge of tears!

13. I DIDN'T WANT ANYBODY TO SEE ME CRYING, so I ran into the back end of the boat into this sort of a covered after deck that still had two light bulbs burning hanging there on strings. I felt like I was just ready to burst into tears and that I must unscrew these two bulbs before anybody saw me crying.

14. I FELT, "I'VE GOTTA PUT OUT THE LIGHTS!" Just then you came rushing in and said, "You can't do that, Honey! You can't put out the lights just because you're crying and feeling bad. People still need that light!—People on the boat still need the light!"

15. I WAS JUST REACHING UP TO UNSCREW THE BULBS when you ran in and took me in your arms to comfort me, and that made me feel better. You were loving and kissing me and petting my hair and telling me not to worry, like you so often do.

16. THEN WE WERE FINDING OUR WAY back up this muddy road in the dark and the cold like we were trying to get somewhere, but I can't remember where it was, but it was like we were leaving the scene of all the boats and all the people that weren't paying any attention anyhow.

17. YOU HAD ME BY THE HAND and we were walking hand in hand‚ and I was telling you to watch out for the mud puddles and telling you where to step and leading you ,along and it seemed like I was much happier again for some reason, so I don't even know why I'm crying now.

18. WE WERE GOING UP THIS ROAD TOWARD SOME SUNSHINE AND WE WERE HAPPY AGAIN! We were taking a walk again just like old times, enjoying the fresh air and exercise and being together again, even if we had to leave everybody else behind. 'Cause it didn't seem like they were interested anyhow just playing games and fighting over the meat and cooking their hamburgers!

19. NOBODY REALLY SEEMED TO CARE WHAT WAS HAPPENING. Everybody was living on their own little boats so selfishly and didn't care what was happening to anybody else. They just didn't want anybody to "rock the boat". They just wanted to keep things like they were.

20. THEY DIDN'T LIKE ME COMING ALONG WITH THAT LETTER trying to make them change things‚ and they were treating my Letter like it was some kind of joke and supposed to be funny! I couldn't get anybody interested in my Letter, that was the thing that hurt me worst. They just kept tossing it back to me undone, and I kept trying to get them to fix it.

21. THAT'S REALLY STRANGE BECAUSE THEY'RE USUALLY VERY INTERESTED and very concerned and very helpful. They usually try very hard. But this time nobody seemed to care, and it nearly broke my heart! I felt so bad, I just wanted to cry and cry, until you came along and led me out of there and we got off the boat and went up the hill together.

22. IT WAS KIND OF FUNNY ABOUT THE WORLD POLITICIANS AND WARMAKERS BEING PICTURED LIKE FOOLISH LITTLE BOYS FIGHTING OVER THEIR TOYS! That was so funny when little Ford grabbed that rocket back from Brezhnev and said‚ "You guys can give up your rockets if you want to‚ but I'm not giving up any of mine—not one!" And he ran back and stuck it back in its hole! Isn't that typical?

23. ALL THOSE AMERICANS WERE FIGHTING OVER THE MEAT and still cooking their hamburgers even after the lights went out! It sure reminds me of the Americans!—No matter what happened, they still had to have their hamburgers!

24. THEY ONLY LIGHT WAS ON THE BOAT WHERE WE WERE, but even on our boat everybody was so busy—too busy to pay any attention. Laban was acting like a little kid giggling and horsing around, and he tossed me back the Letter and ran off like he was playing some sort of big joke. When I opened it up and found he hadn't made the corrections, it made me so sad that nobody cared.

25. THERE WAS LIGHT ON OUR BOAT, BUT I WAS JUST ABOUT TO TURN IT OUT because I didn't want to let them see me cry. Then you came along and comforted me and led me out by the hand off the boat and up the hill.

26. IT'S LIKE EVERYBODY HAD THEIR OWN BOAT AND WAS DOING THEIR OWN THING living their own selfish private lives. You know, boats are so self-contained! Even on our boat where we still had a little light left, everybody was so busy they weren't even paying attention to what I was trying to tell them! That's unusual, because they usually seem to be interested in what I have to say.

27. BUT THIS TIME EVEN OUR OWN CREW APPARENTLY DIDN'T SEEM TO BE CONCERNED. They were all too busy about their own things. Only Little Joy stopped to kiss me, until you came along. You'd been looking for me and suddenly found me like, I'd been hiding out cause I was so sad. You came rushing into that little back deck saying:

28. "WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE?—YOU CAN'T TURN OUT THOSE LIGHTS! THE PEOPLE NEED THEM!" I was trying to hide my sorrow and I wanted to turn out the lights so nobody would see it. Well, I guess it makes a little sense. I don't know when it's going to happen. Maybe it's already happened with some.

29. ANYHOW‚ YOU AND I GOT OFF THE BOAT together and walked on up the hill in the cold and the dark and the rain towards the sunshine. I was guiding you between the puddles like I always do‚ and I was happier again.

30. (MARIA: WELL, MAYBE IT'S LIKE WHAT YOU'RE DOING NOW: YOU'RE STARTING A NEW REVOLUTION and maybe some of them won't want to follow and you're having to walk out on those who won't listen. But you've still left the lights on behind you.)

31. I WAS SO SICK OF HEARING FIGHTING AND QUARRELING OVER THAT MEAT! They were so busy cooking their hamburgers!—It seemed like they were more interested in flesh and playing their silly games, like tossing paper airplanes and sailing nutshell boats!

32. IT WAS LIKE THERE WAS A BIG EMERGENCY happening and the lights were out and it seemed like there was a war going on or something. Ford and Brezhnev were scrapping, but nobody really seemed to care.

33. BUT THEY SEEMED TO BE MORE INTERESTED IN COOKING THEIR HAMBURGERS, EVEN IF THEY HAD TO COOK THEM IN THE DARK! They weren't paying any attention to what was going on anymore than they had to‚ and I was trying to warn them and tell them, but they just didn't want to be bothered. It made me so sad I wanted to cry!

34. SO WE JUST FINALLY GAVE UP AND WALKED OUT. I sure hope I don't have to do that to wake them up, but I've sure threatened to! But if they don't follow, I'm going to have to leave them behind.

35. WE'RE GOING TO GO ON TO THE LIGHT OF A BRIGHTER DAY and leave all this mess behind, the cold and the dark and the rain, with all their fighting and fussing and feuding and warring!

36. WE'RE GOING TO KEEP ON FOLLOWING THE LORD AND CLIMBING THE HILL until we find that peaceful happy sunny valley of His Light and Love, where we'll start all over again if we have to, in a new day, a new land and a new Kingdom, praise the Lord!

37. I WONDER WHAT LITTLE JOY KISSED ME FOR? It was almost like our own younger generation are more concerned than their parents! Anyhow‚ we're moving on, His gypsy caravan keeps rolling on!

38. THAT GREAT BIG CARD, BY THE WAY, WAS LIKE A NAVIGATIONAL CHART, just about the same size too! It was like I was the captain‚ but apparently I couldn't interest anybody in sailing. All the ships were tied up to the dock, nice and secure, and nobody was going anywhere, just busy cooking hamburgers!

39. SO YOU AND I GOT OFF THE BOAT and walked on up the hill toward the sunshine that looked like Heaven. You don't suppose we're going to die and leave them all behind fighting over their hamburgers, do you?

39. I HOPE IT JUST MEANS WE LEFT THE SELFISH HAMBURGER GOBBLERS BEHIND and went on to start our New Revolution in new lands of light and the sunshine of His love and blessing!

40. I WONDER IF ANYBODY ELSE GOT OFF THE HAMBURGER BOAT AND FOLLOWED US up the hill toward that brighter day ahead? Do you suppose they did? I hope so‚ don't you? God bless them!