Through the many ages that have passed since Chainsaw’s inception in 2009, patrons have gazed slack-jawed with befuddlement at our sign.

“2009-2012ish?” they ask, eyes alight with confusion, “But that was years ago.”

Indeed, loyal patron; your powers of deduction clearly know no match. What you don’t know is that the world as we know it was almost lost to us in that fateful year, 2012.

You see, back in 2009, Chainsaw had not yet officially opened. After having acquired the bar through a dangerous game of chance, we were eager to finally realize our dream of opening the first Chainsaw-named karaoke bar in Uptown Waterloo.

After a long afternoon spent trying to remove the stickiness from the floors left by the previous owner, we engaged in a spirited round of karaoke.

But unbeknownst to us, we had an audience.

We spotted a most peculiar creature watching us from the shadows.

The small blue fellow was horned and had eight legs. He looked like the product of a passionate, consensual three-way romance between a Smurf, a centaur, and a tarantula. The eclectic love child told us that his name was Diane and that he had a message for us.

He looked like this but also completely different.

He spoke of impending doom at the hands of extraterrestrial nuclear fire. Diane told us that his people, the Ryangoslings (no relation) had been fighting a desperate war for supremacy of the Milky Way galaxy against their fierce enemy: The Galgarumps.

The Galgarumps were bulbous, bloated, boisterous, and blasphemous creatures with orange skin that knew no decency and had nought but a semblance of morality.  

Diane said he had been tasked by the Ryangoslings with the protection of Earth. He had spent much of his difficult life living in the shadows as he went about his near-impossible task. But at last he had been drawn out of his solitude by the sweet sound of music, specifically, a karaoke version of Journey’s beloved ballad Don’t Stop Believing.

Diane said that he related to the song immeasurably. He’d been feeling a little blue lately (no pun intended) and the song had reminded him of the depth and talent of the human race.  

Diane then told us that the Mayans had been right. They too had heard tell of the infamous Galgarumps, and knew that they planned to launch their attack in the year 2012. The Mayans had thought the Galgarumps arrival in force would surely mean the destruction of the planet. The Ryangoslings had shared this belief and had dispatched several sleeper agents to prevent this terrible act of violence.

But one by one, the Ryangoslings had been hunted down and taken from the world.

For twenty years, Diane had wandered the world alone, in a perpetual state of dread over the inevitable arrival of the Galgarumps.

But the music had cracked his steely visage and brought him forth from the shadows. In his desperate state of loneliness, he chanced an appearance. And now, meeting all of us and hearing the hallucinatory poetic lyricism of Journey, Diane’s soul was renewed; once again, he believed.

Journey in all their kinetic glory.

For the rest of the night, we sang him the best humanity had to offer: Oops, I Did It Again, Lose Yourself, Teenage Dirtbag, Sweet Caroline, and the immortal, Stacy’s Mom.

“My friends,” he said in his baritone brogue, “You have given me the faith to stand on my own eight legs. I will fight for humanity. When the Galgarumps arrive in and around the year 2012, I will fight and die for you.”

“What are your chances, Diane?” we asked.

“I’d put them at about 50/50.

“But whenever you sing those songs, I shall hear, and it shall give me strength. And remember, I’ll… be… right… here,”  he said, jabbing each of us where we can only imagine he thought our hearts were.

And with that, he was gone.

To honour Diane’s wishes, our sign reflected the open-ended, undefined nature of the future. Yes, we knew the world might end in 2012, but we chose to have at least some faith in our furry blue friend. The brave Ryangosling deserved, at the very least, an “ish”.

And here we are. Still alive to this day. We like to think he’s out there somewhere, still riding that midnight train, going N…E…where…  

Pictured: Artist’s conception of Diane’s soul.







This article was written for Chainsaw by Greg Johnson