The house lights go down, and the already restless crowd murmurs in excitement.
Then, almost imperceptibly at first, the slow roll of tympani, like distant thunder, begins as roving spotlights careen about the grand hall.
The lights converge on the curtain, which slowly rises to reveal a crowded stage, replete with a brass band, jugglers and acrobats, sequined showgirls, ululating virgins (take their word on it!), and whirling fireworks. A basso profundo announcer is heard:
“Ladies and gentlemen, we are proud to present THE man, that worldly traveler, back from his self–imposed exile in the wilds of Northern Wisconsin… ”
A murmuring is heard in the crowd.… it becomes a chant - “Bat-ty Bat-ty… ”
“He is here to regale you with the insights gleaned from his amazing adventures… ”
The spotlights converge on the center of the stage - a trapdoor opens - the crowd reaches a fever pitch of hysteria… A thousand doves are released and fly above the throng… a million red rose petals float down from the rafters…
The trumpets strike up a fanfare… multiple explosions of colored fireballs illuminate the scene… a shadowy figure arises from the bowels of the stage…surrounded by swirling smoke and electrical discharges… the ululation raises its pitch as the virgins rend their clothes and pull their hair… grown men weep…
The crowd is in a frenzy - cheering, whistling, stamping as the Great Man approaches the microphone - he raises a hand, and suddenly the assembled multitude is silent. He begins to speak…
“Um... er... uh... I guess I blew my budget for today’s post on the introduction. I don’t have any thing left for today“Sorry… I’ll be back tomorrow… I promise!”