The Coming of Dave

By Keith Errington

An observation from the Hopeless, Maine Scientific Society.

Physics is a funny thing. Full of strange behaviours and surprising outcomes. It can inspire and confound. It can amuse and frustrate. But once you understand it, it’s entirely predictable. Science is like that. Even on Hopeless, Maine, where a good deal of magic interferes with many scientific principles, in day-to-day life science and logic generally still prevails.

Take the properties of light for example, universal and immutable. Refraction works here as elsewhere. And on Hopeless, Maine, it is a combination of refraction, weather conditions and freak cloud reflections that results in a phenomenon that is hard, but let us say, not
impossible, to explain through physics alone. Unfortunately, Hopeless, Maine, is not known for a high level of physics knowledge amongst its inhabitants. I suspect they would probably think that refraction is the process of cutting a cake into even smaller pieces.

And so it is that the phenomenon that happens approximately once a year is referred to as The Coming of Dave by islanders – a very unscientific label in my opinion.

A small, haphazardly organised group of religious followers, or more accurately, nutters, has taken this annual event to heart and formed a fanatical sect. These believers refer to themselves as Davotees. In the month leading up to the possible sighting of Dave, they prepare as best they can and try to spread the word of Dave’s coming to other, mostly disinterested, often irritated, occasionally violent, islanders.

Predicting the coming of Dave has a random margin of error when it comes to knowing the exact timing and place. This means that Davotees have to keep an eye on known manifestation locations for several days. This is known as “Davewatch” and is generally accompanied by Davotional fasting and wailing in equal measure. (The wailing being mostly a direct result of the fasting).

Finally, there will be a faint shimmering for up to an hour and then Dave proper will appear. This generally results in a mad dash to that particular location by all the watchers in the other locations. Nobody wants to miss the Word of Dave.

For up to five minutes (Usually a lot less- one year it was a mere three seconds) Dave appears as a glowing vision, surrounded by a halo of light. During this time, Davotees will eagerly and voraciously watch everything Dave does and religiously record everything Dave says.

Afterwards, there will be weeks of debates. What did Dave say? What does it mean? How should we change our lives as a result? (Mostly Dave doesn’t speak – so many times the endless discussions will be over interpreting a glance, or a hand movement or the use of a potato peeler).

Once they observed Dave with a stack of magazines and a box of tissues. Well, that sparked a particularly lively round of debating, as you might imagine.

Dave himself, is entirely unaware of the import his mundane actions might have to a such a deranged bunch of individuals and goes about his daily life blissfully ignorant of the powerful influence he wields. He is not a famous person where he lives. His life is entirely uninteresting. Even amongst nondescript denizens of the world, his ranking is, at best, very, very average. He does nothing exciting, and in fact will do nothing exciting his entire life.

Basically, we have already spent more time in describing Dave that he should ever warrant. We don’t need to know what he does or where he lives – both facts are immaterial to this story and would only serve to increase the sense of ennui that Dave engenders in his peers, neighbours, friends and workmates.

To Davotees however, he is a god, an infallible oracle, an all-seeing prophet – a divine being. During Dave’s brief materialisations, Davotees will hang on to his every word, his every move, his every expression, his every sneeze, or cough, or fart.

There have been a series of official pronouncements from the Davotees – and these are being collected in a tome they refer to as The Book of Dave. Such pronouncements include: “thou must always put your right sock on first”, “thou must never unbutton your shirt completely before removing it” and most controversially “thou must addest the milk after the tea”. Two Davotees had to be forcibly detained after a fight broke out over that one.

As well as the debates, there is a week of official mourning for Dave’s passing after the manifestation ends. During this period, Davotees only wear strictly black and only eat black food. And as this will follow the Davewatch period of fasting, they are all generally in a black mood.

Whilst they are interesting to observe from an ethnological point of view, Davotees really have very little impact on the island, with most others tending to ignore “those nutters”. Generally, the most interesting thing about the whole affair is the physics behind the phenomenon. But as we stated earlier, there are very few people on the island with sufficient knowledge to investigate. Whilst here at the Hopeless, Maine Scientific Society, we have neither the time nor the resources to investigate what is, after all, a relatively harmless phenomenon.

Now The Arrival of Pete, on the other hand…


One thought on “The Coming of Dave”

  1. Daveotees – 😂😂😂😂

    Sent from my iPhone


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