Butt Head & The Stranger
By James Reesor
This is a famous story about a stranger who often walked along a crooked path near the home of a young boy that people called the “village idiot.” Most residents of Wilmington had never seen the stranger and they knew nothing about his existence until the rumors started flowing from person to person.
According to what was going around on the local grapevine, Glenn Buttery – the “village idiot” who is also known as “Butt Head” to most folks in town – had been seen sneaking around with a flashlight behind a stranger one night.
“It was like he was trying to be some kind of investigator for the FBI,” was how Sarah Ann Bachmann described what she had seen while sharing gossip with Nikki Malkin.
Sarah Ann was a lady in that particular neighborhood south of downtown where unusual things kept happening. She had been sitting in her rocking chair on the front porch one night when she first realized a strange man was being followed by Butt Head. When they started talking, she leaned forward, straining her ears to hear what the old man with white hair was saying, but the sound of his voice was drowned out by barking dogs.
Sarah was watching when the flashlight was turned off. She saw the two of them walk over to sit on the bench under the oak tree next to Miss Web’s fence. They were talking for nearly an hour before Sarah saw the stranger return to the crooked path. The village idiot was leaving in the opposite direction with a bundle of papers in his hand, giggling like a little girl while running as fast as his legs would carry him until he was out of sight. “It was a strange thing to see,” Sarah told Pat Helena, Stu Santorum, and Michele Perry when shopping at the food market. “That boy would give any mother a nervous fit.”
“Butt Head” was also known by friends as “Goofus” or “Fatty Boy” or “Cookie Muncher” or “Great Pretender” or “Berry The Bucket” or “Silly Grinner.” He had a habit of pestering people because he believed himself to be superior. His relatives were always defending his erotic behavior by telling unbelievers he was a misunderstood genius. They said he was very clever and had a reputation only someone with a sense of humor would appreciate. Using a flashlight to scare young girls or torment old men he found walking alone at night near where he lived was only one of many stories told about his mischievous exploits.
It was Sunday morning, a few days after the stranger had last been seen walking along the crooked path when three pastors found mysterious messages tacked to their church doors. Some unknown person had used red magic markers to write English words like the King James version of the Bible. The messages on yellow paper had been signed with a “G” in a circle, but nobody had a clue about who had done the writing.
Rumors began circulating around Wilmington after those words were carefully read by church members. The messages were too hard to understand, so sensitive people with spiritual insights in matters regarding invisible realities were asked for translated versions. It didn’t take very long before daily newspaper articles were being printed, speculating about “Secret Codes” and “False Prophets” and the “End of Days.”
“I think that letter ‘G’ at the bottom of those messages is ‘God’ trying to tell the world something,” Herman Ingraham told his wife after she had asked for his honest opinion.
“I wonder if that stranger on the crooked path, the one Sarah told us was talking to Butt Head, wrote those weird messages,” Michele Pawlenty asked while eating lunch with her boss Ron Perry. “Maybe, but I’d be more inclined to think our buddy Butt Head was writing those messages. I saw him using a computer over at the library last week, and mumbling to himself while writing something in a notebook. He was probably taking something off the Internet,” Ron told her.
The “mysterious messages” controversy was monopolizing how conversations were evolving all over that small community. The gossiping people in every part of town had invented dozens of scenarios to rationalize their own suspicions. It finally became clear to a few folks after newspaper articles were unable to fully explain the facts, someone at the local radio station would need to get involved. The most popular on-air personality, “Crazy Man James,” announced he would be doing his best to provide a public service. His search for “truth” started by interviewing Glenn “Butt Head” Buttery.
“Do you know the name of the stranger you were following with a flashlight on the crooked path a few weeks ago?” James asked Glenn – who was fidgeting next to the microphone while acting extremely nervous – as though he wasn’t sure how to answer. Finally, after the question was repeated by the radio show host, Glenn coughed, and then politely responded: “No sir. The old man didn’t actually tell me his name.”
“You’re probably aware that many people here in town suspect you might have had something to do with those controversial messages found on church doors,” James said with a smile as he winked his eye: “Did you write those messages?”
Glenn Buttery paused for a second to think before answering the question. He was feeling uncomfortable when wondering what people were saying about him. He was believing he needed to defend himself – even though he had done nothing wrong. He bravely scooted closer to the microphone, speaking in a loud voice: “All I did was tease him with my light. That old man is just a stranger in our town. Nobody knows him. I didn’t mean any harm. He never acted like he was angry when explaining things about politics and religion to me.”
“Some of my radio show listeners say the old man was seen giving printed messages to people he meets along the crooked path where he walks. Did he give any to you?” James asked.
“Well, yes sir, but not before telling me he was a prophet sent from God with messages for the world,” Glenn told James in a quiet voice as though it was a secret he was reluctantly sharing. “When I got home that night after talking with him, I read every word on the pages he gave me. There was a web site address, so the next day I looked it up on the Internet to see what I could find. That old man’s picture was right there in plain sight. It looked just like him. It made me curious, so I wondered what else he had to say. I found hundreds of messages all over his web site to read,” Glenn explained.
“Hundreds of messages would take a long time to read,” Crazy Man James said with a grin, and then asked: “Did you make a few copies of those messages you were given, signing them with a ‘G’ – like the first letter of your name – before tacking them to church doors here in Wilmington?”
“It’s just a coincidence,” Glenn declared without showing guilt in his expressionless face. “I suppose you know the first letter for God is ‘G’ – or did you forget how He spells His name?”
“People here in town have been saying you’ve been using words like those found in the mysterious messages. Are you trying to imitate the old man by writing messages like his or using ideas from his web site?” James asked.
“Absolutely not,” Glenn declared. “If anything I’ve ever said or done reminds people of that old man, it’s just a coincidence.”
“Do you know the meaning of the ‘JIGROP’ word – or do you know if the stranger who has been seen walking on the crooked path is the real Prophet Elijah?” James asked.
“I believe I know the meaning of ‘JIGROP.’ Jesus is God... repent or perish,” Glenn answered, “And from what I’ve read on his web site message boards, nobody seems to believe he is the real Elijah from the Bible.”
“Did the stranger you met on the crooked path tell you anything about angels, demons, why the world is in crisis, why the wrath of God is real – or what will happen to America and Israel during the final Middle East war?” James asked.
“Yes,” Glenn replied. “The old man told me many things, but since I’m only a kid without a college education, everything he said went sailing over my head. I guess nobody warned him it was a waste of time to talk to a ‘village idiot’ like me.”
They were both laughing when phone calls started coming in to the “Crazy Man James Radio Show.” Listeners who couldn’t believe what they had been hearing were asking more questions than either James or Glenn had time to answer. One caller said Glenn Buttery was the smartest kid she had ever known and was probably the only person in town who could explain what the old man wrote in those messages. Other irate callers told stories about predictions the stranger had made – and how he described current events before they happened. Fortunately, while Crazy Man James was trying to apologize for making his guest squirm when answering tough questions during the radio show, they were interrupted by a shocking news alert: “We are receiving unconfirmed reports about an earthquake in Los Angeles and a nuclear blast in Damascus.”
Today is 20 August 2011. Pray for divine intervention in Israel and pray that Jerusalem will remain an undivided Holy City.
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