Episode 5 / Species and systems

You might remember from the last episode that The Second Stringers arrived in the Land of Marionettes. If not, go back one episode to get some insights from this new country they are visiting.  

Despite the strings they are forced to use when traveling around the Land of Marionettes, The Second Stringers are simply fascinated about their new abidance. They knew long before there are incredibly many species of puppets crafted among the world theatres, but they never hoped to meet them all on a single stage. And what is even more fascinating, is the fact that some of the species established their own traveling system within the strings system. And others made their sticks and wooden legs to function according to the wire networks, improvising with new technologies and using strange materials like wheels, rails, and screws and even…wireless.  The Second Stringers took some walks just by themselves and meet again at night in their set.

Tulip: Oh, my fingers are hurting. I don’t understand. Why are they choosing to stay all day with their arms hanging? This traveling system makes me want to scream. My blood flow paralyzed!

Gron: The question is why do they prefer to be pulled and dragged and banged all day?

Bipolic: Funny, you’re talking as if it was their choice. You never stop surprising me with your delighting innocence.

Gron: Oh, oh…evil face is back. Take a look at him, guys!!!The smirked face has something to tell us.

Bipolic: I am telling you something, my friends: you will never succeed here without me.

Mely: What?? Heteroclite!! Do you pretend that a normal puppet would never find its way here?

Bipolic: Let me think … Yes! I do not pretend – I am sure that a normal puppet would never find a way in the Land of Marionettes by being “normal”. If you care about being “normal” – but, of course, we need do define this characteristic – than go back to Fingerland.  This country is for heteroclites like me. So watch and learn! I had a long walk in the city, I opened all my four eyes and guess what? Not everybody is using the strings to travel.

Tulip: What??? No way! Those were tourists or foreign students.

Bipolic: No! They were not!

Mely: You lifted over, Bipolic ! You might have found an of of of stage, where every puppet passes over in its own way…But not on the main stage.

Gron: Let the man speak!  In the end he has four eyes.

Bipolic: Thank you, Gron. Guys, I am taking about the main stage. Which, as you noticed, it is full of finger characters, wayangs, bunrakus, bamanas, khayal al-zill[i] and other.  At first you think this puppets use strings purchased from here. But when you look closer, something is peculiar about their walk. Their systems look very alike the strings marionettes use. For a normal eye, there is no difference.  But this puppets know exactly they are not in the power of the same strings. The marionettes are also aware that the puppets pretend to have strings but they fake it. The puppets now that the marionettes now. The marionettes know that the puppets know…But nobody talks about that.

Gron: This is so fucking strange!

Tulip: So, you are telling me that the marionettes admit in their system the presence of fake strings?

Bipolic: Not only they admit it, but some of the fake systems are created by themselves. They actually love it.

Gron: Throw a wet blanket over me! Why would they do that?

Bipolic: As I told you, the systems look exactly like the strings.

Mely: But they are not!

Bipolic: Who cares? If I make a copy of a famous painting many will know it is not genuine, but they will still celebrate the talent of the famous painter through the copy of an anonymous.  The mainstream will not even notice the painting is a fake as long as they are told it is the original. Moreover, if they find out the truth, they will still believe in the beauty of the painting.  And everybody will talk about the famous painter again and again. As for me, I will never be a true artist, but also not a hungry one. Everybody wins something.

Gron: So what should we do, then?  How are we going to travel from now on?

Bipolic: We need a plan!

Gron: I bought some wine. This is going to be a long night.


[i] Traditional puppets used in theatre from different countries.

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