Main Fiction: “The Pink of Fading Neon” by James Blaylock, first published in Triquarterly Journal, Northwestern University, #47, Winter, 1980.
“The Pink of Fading Neon” ©1980 James Blaylock. Used by permission.
Narrator: Fred Himebaugh.
Interview: Author James Blaylock discusses steampunk, pulp fiction influences, and his latest novel The Aylesford Skull with editor Fred Himebaugh.
I’ve heard and read—and it doesn’t surprise me a bit—that the armadillos have turned back. After eons of slow, northward creeping from the plains of Central America, through the jungles and the deserts and the swamps of Mexico, while wooly mammoths and cave bears crashed through the chaparral, and still, ages later, while Aztec and Toltec tribes lived in fear of loathsome, toad-infested pits of skeletons in rainwater, on came the armadillos, on the march for twenty million years, and culminating in unimaginable pairs of shoes and ridiculous scaled and tailed caps. All of that has reversed, in an instant. Up and down the flatlands of Oklahoma, say the scientists, armadillos pause and listen and sniff the air and turn calmly about, on the march, south now, once again.