The first thing Squattedman wondered is where to start? The second, where to continue? And finally: where to end? The order of these three phases was important. If he started at the end, he could continue to end at the beginning and not only would he not have figured out anything, but he might not even be able to remember where he had put the key to his apartment.
Squattedman had rented a small apartment on the top floor of the tallest building in New York, from where he could watch with his eagle’s eye the course of citizen life, ready to act if he noticed any anomaly. But now he should focus on breaking up that corrupt politicians’ organization called Tammany Hall.
He was especially concerned about the identity of the man with a cow mask. He immediately ruled out that he was a cow dressed in men’s clothing specially tailored for him. Because, although sometimes clothes do make the man, he had had occasion to milk him and not a drop came out of the udder. Fortunately, that greatly restricted the number of suspects: there were three hundred thousand cows in New York State alone! However, on that very occasion he had not been able to tear the mask from the cow-headed man’s face, no matter how hard he pulled. Undoubtedly, that meant something, but he didn’t know what.
In sum, Squattedman believed that the cow-headed man should be a famous politician above suspicion in appearance; otherwise he would not need to wear a mask that made him unrecognizable. Either that or he was a nut who thought he was a cow. But a nut would not have been able to occupy the cusp of that pyramid of corruption that was Tammany Hall, unless the rest of the gang were more nuts than him, which was not unlikely.
So much reasoning gave him a headache. After all, he was a man of action. He had never been good at reasoning, especially if there were any logical conclusions to be drawn from his reasoning. Stupid conclusions, he could extract as many as he wanted. However, stupidities were not going to help him much in that case, so he decided to get down to business. He would do what he already did the other time, when by chance he came across the masked man. It happened shortly after his arrival in New York, when he hadn’t even heard of Tammany Hall and was simply looking for a high apartment. The two were traveling in the same elevator, only that Squattedman was going up and the man with a cow mask down. That discrepancy generated some tension between them. Although Squattedman (who went undercover) was the first to enter the elevator, the man with a cow mask came forward and pressed the descent button. But Squattedman counterattacked by pressing the stop switch and then the ascent button. This back-and-forth was repeated several times. In fact, it lasted throughout the morning, until Squattedman lost his temper and pounced on the cow-headed man and began to milk him. Then he still thought he was a cow. Only when he saw that not a drop of milk flowed from his udders, he changed his mind and thought he must be a man with a false cow head. But he tried to tear the mask from his face without success. Taking advantage of Squattedman’s momentary stupor, the cow-headed man took the offensive. Ah, if the elevator had been wide enough to squat! But they were both squeezed like sardines in a tin. It was then that the man with a cow mask socked him on the jaw laying him out.
After recalling these facts, Squattedman headed to the skyscraper where he had come across the cow-headed man. He did not remember the floor where the two had entered the elevator, but in the lobby there was a concierge who would no doubt remember a man with a cow’s head. He asked, but the man told him that there were so many animals that went through there that he couldn’t remember one in particular. Before the skeptical look of Squattedman, the concierge explained that among the residents of that building were the animals that worked in Central Park zoo. And indeed, while Squattedman was on his way out, he came across an orangutan and an ostrich.