5. The Emergining of the Great Stellated Dodecahedron
I was driving my antique egg-van along a small sketchy road…
Sometimes I make sharp turns and go into random roads to break the drab spell of this route of humdrum. I knew, no matter where I turn, I will anyway end up on a familiar road. This time was no exception – after a couple of small roads I suddenly found myself on the noisy route 9, on a part of it far from my usual course. A big flashy sign materializedon the right – Liquidation Sale – going out of business. It was a relatively upscale store – Lexington furniture. Unexpectedly for myself I pulled over and went in.
I do this sometimes, I go for no reason into locations appearing along my way. Besides, furniture stores are special, they are nobody’s dwellings, arranged in amfilads of rooms with no habitants. Only salesmen lurk around like trolls. This store was a maze of rich glares and half-empty spaces with dusty contours on the floor.
I made a couple of haphazard turns and suddenly here it was – A perfect Great Stellated Pentadodecahedron (GSDH for short), made of polished stone, magnificent and shiny.
It literally jumped towards me from a total non-existence.
A nuclear chain of thoughts exploded in my head.
Half a year has passed since the December 2010 California revival, when I turned my attention towards Kepler’s 400 years old discovery…
The winter 2011 was brutal.
Between snowfalls and ice storms I had been working on the
FIVE PIECE COORDINATE MOTION MACHINE.
It was supposed to be based on the green-orange parts rolled around one axis, and each wrapped by four beams of the third stellation of the dodecahedron,
THE ONE I AM LOOKING AT RIGHT THIS MOMENT IN THE FURNITURE STORE!
… The model turned to be extremely complex. It took a month to finish just one part out of five. All that time I wasn’t really sure if this is worth pursuing.
The first half of 2011 has been grinding through survival tasks as a wounded animal through jungles. The pressure of earning living has been gradually rising leaving less and less time for anything else. Four more paper parts would consume all the time left including probably a chunk of sleep…
The dragging Spring morphed into a dragging Summer with no break in sight.
I needed at least some assurance that the course is right. I could barely wait till I was able to visit the Woodshole SPDH again.
Yes, it vanished over the winter.
The crab was there, along with the spider,
but the Magnificent and Rusty One was gone.
It was such a blow!
I had nothing to stare on, nothing to match the four-beamed part against… Until now!
I just have to get this stone one! I can’t let it slip through my fingers like the SPHD…
I checked the tag – $730. Wow, that’s steep. I checked it again – it was already marked down for liquidation – about 80% off. What is it made of? Granite can’t be so expensive.
“Black Onyx” – said a salesman, passing by – “Huge bargain!” Well, on our current shoe string budget it was not. I stood there silent not knowing what to do. I couldn’t just leave. I just COULD NOT!
Suddenly someone said aloud into my left ear – “Can you believe it! So cheap! And I just bought another one just like this for much more”. I turned my head – it was our acquaintance K. She was looking straight at the GSDH with a frown of serious regret.
“Are you saying you already have one? ” – asked I in a disarray.
My confusion grew sharply. She didn’t seem to me as someone seriously interested in Kepler’s polyhedra so she would buy a second one for a bargain price of $730.
“Do you really have a star like this one? ” – asked I again.
OF COURSE! I didn’t even notice that there was something glassy under the GSDH.
“So what would be a right price to you?” asked the salesman, who didn’t really go away. – “Don’t forget – it’s made in Beverly Hills! Let me check again – Yes, see this label – Made in Beverly Hills”.
“Well, let me explain” – said I – “This thing has a tremendous value to me. It’s not just a pretty ornament. This thing falls into a chain of very meaningful events which are very important to me. So I would pay you any amount of money I could. If I were a Beverly Hills resident, I would shell out a hundred million, but being myself I can give you seventy bucks or I will not be able to pay for the gas to bring it home”. He got offended and left into his shady lair.
There was something else I needed to do – I called my wife and asked what she would think if I buy something expensive and totally home-useless. Besides, I’d like to keep it visible and it’s quite large and most likely won’t improve the house interior.
And my wonderful wife said literally this – “Of course, go ahead, buy it!”
The salesman never really went away. He was watching me as a hawk and reappeared when I started to look around.
“When is the last day of the sale?” asked I.
Nothing left! To me that meant the GSDH would follow the SPDH into oblivion.
“Give me your last price” shouted I
And that ends the story of how in the month of July of the year 2011 I took possession of
Onyx Great Stellated Dodecahedron