Monday, October 27, 2014

Goblin Accounting Office

The following is a transcript of a recording taken at Aragorn Air Force Reserve station, by Ssgt Joe Robinson, at the Goblin Accounting Office, August 15, 2010. 

[Scraping noises as I slide my recorder across the desk toward the subjects.]
G1:   “Get that thing away from me.”
ME:   “It’s just a recorder.”
G1:   [pause] “What the hell for?”
ME:   “I’m Joe Robinson.  I’m a reporter from the Stars and Stripes.  I called you yesterday.  We’re interviewing participants in the new military de-segregation program.  I cleared all this with Lienutnant Jones and Chief Gurg.”
[long pause]
ME:   “Do you still want to do this interview?”
G1:   [sigh]  Yuh-yuh.  Long as chief know.”
ME:   “Okay, so start off by telling me your name.”
G1:   “Shigrit.”
ME:   “Shigrit?”
SHIGRIT: “You got problem with that?  You make some kind of joke, pink-face?”
ME:   “No, I just want to make sure I’m saying it right.  How do you spell that?”
SHIGRIT: “Like it sounds.  You know how to spell, yuh?”
ME:   “Do you have a last name?”
SHIGRIT: “Shigrit Blood-Vole.”
ME:   “Blood-Vole?  Is that your clan name?”
SHIGRIT: “Yeah.”
ME:   “Ok, tell us about what you do.”
SHIGRIT: “Uuh…this is Goblin Accounting Office.  We keep track of treasury.  Everything you want, from paperclip to stealth drone…it come through us.  All of it.”
ME:   “Sounds interesting.”
SHIGRIT: “Nyeh, nyeh.  I mean, don’t get me wrong, it is job.  It is good job, but I signed on with military so I pay for college.”
ME:   “But you’re getting job experience.”
SHIGRIT: “Sure, sure.”
ME:   “What kinds of challenges do you face being a goblin in today’s military?”
SHIGRIT: “Uh, you know.”  [snorrt]  “Sorry, I got cold.”  [snooooorrrrt]
ME:   “Would you like a Kleenex?”
SHIGRIT: “What?”
ME:   “To blow your nose?  There’s a box on the desk there.”
SHIGRIT: “Nyeh, don’t worry.”  [snoorrrt-snort]  “I never use those.  What was question?”
ME:   “What kinds of challenges—”
SHIGRIT: “Oh yeah!  Well, you know.  Usual stuff.  Why would goblin go to college?  I get that a lot.  I mean just because you are goblin they expect you to be lazy, cowardly…that sort of thing.  I have dreams, too, you know.”
ME:   “What do you want to study?”
SHIGRIT: [pause] “Goblin stuff.”
ME:   “Goblin stuff?  What’s that?”
SHIGRIT: “It is mind your own damn business, that is what.”
ME:   “Hang on.  The point of this interview was to get to know the goblins.  We’re trying to break down walls, not build them up.”
SHIGRIT:  “Meh.”
ME:   “Do you want to continue?”
SHIGRIT: “Yuh-yuh, as long as chief says.  Beats working.”
ME:   “So what do you want to study in college?”
SHIGRIT: “Why you keep asking that question?  What does college have to do with military?  Ask me question about work.  This work, the work that I do.”
ME:   “I’m just trying to keep it real.  I mean, we’re not all gung-ho, GI Joe, are we?  We all have dreams—aspirations, if you will—outside of military life.”
SHIGRIT: “Ask different question.”
ME:   “Um, okay…”
[a second goblin voice butts in (loud) close to the mic]
G2:   “He wants to study dance!”  [snigger]
SHIGRIT: “Shut it, pig face!” [A chair scrapes across the floor.  Something falls over with a crash.]
G2:   [voice echoes from across the room] “He tell me!  He got drunk last weekend, he tell me!”
SHIGRIT: “Va gala hootu!  I said shut it!”
G2:   [sniggering]
ME:   “Is this true?”
SHIGRIT: “You going to clean that up, fart-eater.  When chief sees that, it is your ass—not mine.”
[Long argument in Goblin-speek between Shigrit and the other goblin.]
ME:   “Shigrit?”
G2:   [Sounds like swearing.]
SHIGRIT: “That’s right, I tell Chief!  Then we see who is laughing.”
ME:   “Shigrit?”
SHIGRIT: “What?”
ME:   “Can we continue?”
SHIGRIT: [sigh] “Yeah.”  [The chair scrapes across the floor again.]
ME:   “Well that’s cool, man.  You’re studying dance, I’m cool with that.  What kind of dance?”
G2:   “Ballet!  Woooo-oooooo!”
SHIGRIT: “You wanna eat your teeth?  Shut it!
G2:   [singing]  “Wooo-ooooo-hooooo.”
ME:   “Are you going to study ballet?”
[long pause]
SHIGRIT: “I tell you something I never tell anybody, eh?  You don’t put this on your web-page-whatever-thing, panyes?”
ME:   “Hey, man, I won’t tell.  Scout’s honor.”
SHIGRIT: “What is that—what is…scout’s honor?”
ME:   “It’s a…it’s just something that we say.  It means that I promise not to tell.”
SHIGRIT: “You better not.  If you tell, I have Chief Gurg come an’ he find you, and he break your kneecaps, panyes?  Both of them!”
ME:   “Sure, I understand.  This is strictly off the record.”  [Scraping sound as I slide the recorder away from the subject.]
SHIGRIT: “I take modern jazz.”
ME:   “That’s awesome.  I have two daugh—er, I know two people who are into that.  I think it’s great stuff.”
G2:   [huffs] “You’re a pyosset.”
SHIGRIT: “Your father is a pyosset, and your mother rides on top.  Shut up, or by Urok I flatten your nose!”
ME:   “Look, if he likes dance I can respect that, whether it’s jazz or ballet or hip-hop.”
SHIGRIT: “Gah!  My friends, they do hip-hop.  Break-dance.  They look like…like cloonz…how you say it?”
ME:   “Clowns?”
SHIGRIT: “Yeah, clowns.  They think they bad-ass.”
ME:   “Well, that’s cool.  If you like modern jazz, I’m cool with that.  Do you plan on becoming a dancer?”
SHIGRIT: “I don’t know.  I take classes, I see where it goes.  Maybe I try out for play, and get part.”
G2:   [sniggering]
ME:   “I know someone who can get you an audition with Tops in Blue, you ever heard of them?”
ME:   “They’re an entertainment showcase sponsored by the Air Force.  They do all kinds of musical numbers, dancing, too.  They tour all over the world.  Would you like that?”
SHIGRIT: “You do that for me?”
ME:   “Sure, man.”
SHIGRIT: “You all right.  You all right.”
G2:   Skeelgah.”
ME:   “Hey, can I ask your friend some questions?”
SHIGRIT: “Pish!  Go right ahead.”
ME:   “Hey, you mind if I ask you a few questions?”
G2:   “Sure, pink-face.  Ask away.”
ME:   “Well, for our readers why don’t you tell us a little about yourself.  Start with your name.”
G2:   “Bugger!”
ME:   “Bugger?”
SHIGRIT: “That is not name.  Don’t listen to him.  He is being rude.”
ME:   “I can call you Bugger if that’s what you want.  You want me to call you Bugger?”
G2:   “My name is Greenskin, pink-face.”
ME:   “Greenskin, that’s better.  So, Greenskin, how do you like the military?  Do you think this new integration program is working?”
G2:   Ack!  Thptptptpht!  That is what I think!”
SHIGRIT: “He has got farts for brains.  Do not listen to him.”
ME:   “Okay, well that’s—” 
[end transcription]

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