Lots of history to this old, battered, something of a village. Whiz Bang is a high desert mirage that blinked into the New Mexico Territories in 1815, when a rumor started that there were lots of rocks, sand and sticky-burr's awaiting exploitation, whiched caused people to wander in, get lost and forget to leave.
Marcus is the village barber. Handsome rugged and smells like lavender. Has two
independent thumbs on his right hand. Posey and him had a thing going for awhile, but not since Marcus accidently poked her in both eyes at the same time putting his arm around her. Posey looked like a raccoon for a couple of weeks.
Gladdy is the village wanderer. So busy getting nothing done and never getting to where she was going when starting out. Kinda like watching a bee buzzing around, oblivious to flowers. She wears a really frumpy straw hat and slobbers her Tic Tac's.
Village burro is named Duh. That burro is like some arcane prop in every scene of life. Walk out of the merchantile and Duh is meandering by. Digging post holes out on the mesa, there's Duh lopping around. Hang a new screen door, Duh is watching. Come out of the post office and Duh is sitting there. Burro is always around everyone at the same time. Really desert-creepy, if you know what I men.
Cooter is the village sot without a gutter. He wobbles all the time. Never seems to fall down. He doesn't have a neck. Head just sits flat on the shoulders and rolls around a bit.
Nobody that I can recall has ever seen him shrug.
Wynette owns the Root, Grub and Growl cafe. Three table establishment that serves vittles like, crushed saltine-breaded pork tenderloin fried in peanut oil, then smothered in catsup with two layers of dill slices on a leaf of lettuce and wrapped in a toasted bun. Fries so crisp they stand alone. Wynette ran with the carnival in her youth. It shows.
Now Bill is an affable fellow. He...odd, I don't know what he does. Known him thirty-five years...funny, don't remember him doing anything. He's just always been with us. Who is this guy? How obtuse. Who else do I know I don't?
Plato is the village Librarian. He knows his letters and how to count. Maybe not versed on the Dewey Decimal System, but he knows what's in every well balanced stack and he keeps it that way. Checks stuff out and puts it back in the correct stacks when returned. No way this village could operate without him.
Sniffy is our sanitation engineer. Drives the honey wagon. All you be needing to know about him. He's always around, even when he ain't, if you get the drift.
Tommy is the village animal control guru. He bathes Duh once a week and brushes him every morning. Leaves her carrots, turnips and two sugar cubes each evening. Only guy I've ever known who has roadrunners following him around keeping him company. Very gentle heart, that Tommy. Too gentle, I suspect.
Village saloon is owned and operated by Sally. Her great-great-great-great grand pappy built it out of rock. Walls are five feet thick with vigas twenty inches around. Probably be the last bar standing when all is said and done. She once knocked down a desperate man trying to rob the saloon. Knee-capped him with a blast from her coach gun, she did. Best place to be plunked down during the monsoon season. Sally has a 20 foot fireplace in her saloon with stone benches in front of it that keeps the tush warm as toast on Winter days.
Carlos is the village blacksmith. I swear, if the universe broke, Carlos would have it up and running lickity-split. He married Rosita, who makes really beautiful rugs on her loom. One time a richy-rich couple pulled into the village. Their Mercedes was a coughing and spitting awful. It needed a new thingamabob. Carlos told them he would have the part in a couple of weeks. Those folks being rich and all, got all steamed up and knotted. Finally, Carlos said, "I can fix it in a couple of days. It'll cost you, though, cause I have to machine the part from scratch." He did so and charged those pansy-assed snooties $200 just to teach them a lesson. Carlos is one great fixer upper, but ain't too smart in the taking rich folks for a ride, department.
Gaffney was born all crippled up. Never learned to walk. Makes his living crawling around gathering small rocks. Polishes them in a big drum thing he has and glues those rocks onto sheets of slate to make pictures of the desert. Tourists buy them at his selling stand. He once worked all summer, just on a lark, to lay a polished rock walk in front of the saloon. Sally kept him supplied with her special homemade brew while he was working. Beautiful spirit inside ol' Gaffney. He vibrates when he's had one snoot full too many.
Spook is the village dog. So dang old he only lets out a "hurrump" once in awhile. Scruffiest, scroungiest, laziest dog ever known in these parts. Dog literally wore a depression in the rock he sleeps on over the years. Spook caught a jackalope once, or so the rumor goes. Duh and him are the best of friends.
Many villagers actually live away from the village. Desert people are a breed forgotten in the hustle and bustle of America. But, they be salt of the earth. Never doubt that.