TO SAVE THE DISCO • by Kevin Shamel

“Did someone stick a transceiver on the hull? Was it you, Ed?”

“There is no transceiver on your hull. You are not in contact with your vessel. Or any vessel. Just me.”

“Come on, Ed. I’m not speaking with a narwhal.”

“You most certainly are.”

“Ed, if you don’t fess-up right now, I’ll be forced to tell anyone who’s listening on this frequency about that thing you told me Friday night.”

“This isn’t Ed. My name can’t be pronounced in your language.”

“Ah ha! Are you Russian? Norwegian?”

“I’m Narwhalian. But I spoke with a Russian yesterday.”

“Oh, this is bull — Look, I’ve got a job to do. I’ve got about an hour left down here. Let me finish my survey in peace.”

“Let us dance in peace.”


“That’s the reason I’m talking to you. You’re too close to our disco.”

“Now I know you’re Russian.”

“Get your eyes off the computer screen and look out the porthole.”

“Black ocean.”


“Holy! Nice trick. Got yourself a trained narwhal, or fish stuck on my sub?”

“It’s me, you dolt. Helloooooo.”

“Okay, great joke. I’ll bet your crew is laughing their butts off. Now stop disrupting my radio. I need to check in with my ship.”

“Yeah… I can’t let you do that until you’ve heard what I have to tell you.”

“This is getting ridiculous. I’ll be reporting you.”

“That’s what we want you to do.”

“You’re looking for a fight?”

“Looking? No. You’re invading our space. We thought we’d let you know that you’re too close to our disco. And we will kick your asses if you wreck it. We want you to leave.”

“Yeah, I’m sure you do want us to leave. Us, the Canadians, Norwegians, Brits, Greenland… But we’ve got as much claim here as you — the treaty and everything. Just let me do my job.”

“I’m not Russian! I’m a narwhal. Look out the porthole again. I’ll show you how I’m talking to you.”

“What is that?”

“Modified radio transmitter. Had this sucker stuck on me when I was three. We fixed it up with some scavenged parts from a sunken sub. Now it’s a translating walkie-talkie. And radio signal jammer.”

“This is bull. I don’t know how you’re getting the narwhal to follow me, unless it’s got something to do with that gear on its head — and that’s real creepy.”

“Stop your sub, just drift with me a minute.”

“This is an elaborate prank to play on a surveyor.”

“You still think it’s a joke? Stop your sub.”

“Of course it’s a joke.”

“It’s an even bigger joke that I’m conversing with a human. If you only knew. But then it wouldn’t be much of a joke. At any rate, thank you for stopping those whining props. If I could just have a minute of your time to discuss our disco…”

“Okay. A narwhal disco in the Arctic Ocean. Let’s talk about it.”

“Great! Thank you. See, here’s the deal — our disco is secret. No one knows about it but us and the octopi. The only reason the eight-leggers know about it is that they’re great musicians. We sorta need them. Anyway, you humans have been getting awfully close to it lately. One of these subs like yours zipped by a hundred yards from the entrance. If the person inside had been paying attention, she’d have seen the velvet rope! And all this talk about drilling for oil…”

“So, we’re crashing your party.”

“Nearly! It’s a serious concern. This disco has been around for a thousand years. It’s an institution.”

“Okay, so next time we’ll bring a case of vodka.”

“Oh. Still with the Russian thing.”

“Or Norwegian, they like vodka, too.”

“They told me you wouldn’t listen.”

“Your comrades?”

“Yeah, my comrades.”

“I knew it!”

“My wife knew it, too. She said, ‘Srrreeeaowrrreeaaarr, you know humans are racists. They won’t listen.’ But I thought if I could talk to just one of you, all alone down here… Oh, never mind. I didn’t want to have to do this.”

“Racist? I’m no racist. I have black friends.”

“Good. You’ll need all the friends you can get. I’m going to open up the radio now. Hold on a sec — there. Now it’s going global.”

“It’s wha–?”

“Attention humankind. I am Srrreeeaowrrreeaaarr, Supreme Commander of The Royal Narwhalian Sea-Force. You are destroying our lifestyle in your quest for oil.

“The Arctic Ocean belongs to Our Narwhals, governed under the Authority of the League of Animalia by Queen Ooowiiiiiiiarriiiiiiiieaoooee the Third, Grand Madame of the Northern Seas, Governess of Southern Oceania, Protector of the Poles, Our Loving Graciousness — Heart of the Water. Not to any of your miserable governments. It is not yours to fight over, or draw treaties. The bounty of the sea is not yours. It is Ours.

“Under Her Authority, and the backing of All Animalia, we do hereby declare the world’s oceans off-limits to humankind. We do so legally and under provocation, after rebutted attempts of diplomacy. You will withdraw all oceanic endeavors.

“You have one month to evacuate the seas. Any human or human vessel entering the oceans after one month will be subject to swift, deadly penalty. Any amassing of naval troops will be considered an act of war and will be met with swift retaliation. You can blame it all on this surveyor jerk down here in the sub at the North Pole. I don’t know his name, but he’s got a mate on his vessel named Ed, who told him something secret on Friday. Something he was going to blab about to whomever was listening. Blame it all on him.”

“This better be a joke.”

“Get away from our disco.”

Kevin Shamel says: “With the North Pole becoming yet another battleground for the human nations of the world, someone has to speak for the Narwhals. Why not a Narwhal?”

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