Author Topic: Short Stories, yeah?  (Read 800 times)

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The Perineum Falcon

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Short Stories, yeah?
« on: April 25, 2004, 11:32:53 AM »
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This was recently chosen for publication at my school's campus literary magazine (I'm breaking out!), figured I'd share it with you guys, make the most of this new thang. Enjoy, or something:

I suppose a little history on this subject would be a worthwhile investment for the readers.
I wrote this short piece just shy of a year ago.  It was around the time that, like now, the Terror Alert was on High or “Orange.”  At the time, it was the highest the Alert had ever gone and a certain amount of manic paranoia was to be found in America.  Bottled-water, canned foods, gas masks, duct tape and plastics were selling like never before across the country.  
And, if my memory serves me well, there was one such case of a man-gone-overboard, a man who duct-taped plastic all about his house in fear of a bio-terror attack.  But even if it were just a nasty rumor, I found it curious that life in “the land of the free and home of the brave” can involve so much fear and self-imprisonment.  It was with this that I wrote my Piggy.
Enjoy.


Deep and dark, here I am stuck in this room. A cubicle of a space specially made for and by me, now occupied by ten others. The radio bzzt-bzzt’s in and out, no contact with the outside world.
I have my house plasticizsed and duct-taped, my water bottled and my gas-masks masked. I live in America, I live in fear, and the terrorists have won. I do not live on the west coast, I do not live on the east coast. I do not live in New York, I do not live in Los Angeles; I do not live in a big city. I live in fear, I live in America, I live in a basement bunker with 10 other people, and the terrorists have won.
The alert was orange, I think it’s red now, I’m not too sure what the colors are; all I see is black. “High” was all I saw before I rushed out to the local Home Depot. I beat everyone there. Some say I’m crazy for doing so, some say I’m a coward, some say I over-reacted. I would say I was being prepared, cautious, and safe. I am the ant and they are the grasshopper.
My neighbors are grasshoppers too; annoying, mooching grasshoppers. I always knew they were. I should never have told them about my secret; big mistake on me.
I have enough oxygen for me to breathe for a years time. I have two gas masks, for me and my hopeful love who never came in time. I have enough bottled water to last a life time (but life time in this case is extremely relative as it could end any time soon). And though by all appearances I have everything covered, I do not have a gun for my neighbors’ heads.
I knew I had forgotten something.
Bzzt-bzzt goes the radio. Fragments of words static in and out. “Thi.....n.......ne....overnme....bzzzzzzzt...” The batteries are almost gone, and I’ve no power. The electric bill still lies on the table, upstairs and in the kitchen. My canned food: baked beans, raviolis, meat stew, spaghetti and such. Good eating but the eating’s gone. The neighbors, nameless and faceless locusts have devoured the rations; their children were especially keen on the cold and watery apple sauce.
Trapped below my bathroom, we’ve sat in wait for nearly three months. I hadn’t thought this out much when the obsession began two weeks prior. I quit my job at the airline and took all my life savings and invested in shovels, buckets, jackhammers and the like. Some people say I’m crazy, the government claims there’s nothing for me to worry about, I say there is and I say I’m just being prepared. There is nothing left of the savings, and there is nothing left of the food.  There is only one option left to us.
We must revert to cannibalism.
“I pick the child!” “The hell you do! You’ll pick mine!” “You’re right! I will! And I call the legs!” “You sick bastard! That’s my son!” “Yeah well you’re son’s a fat, greedy, little shit!” “Don’t you get into this!” “It’s true! He sucked up all the food!” “The key to survival is to take out the fattest one!” “He’s right, ya know....” “He’s a growing boy!” “No, he’s my goddamn supper!!” And so the conversation ends.
The flashlight clicks on; risky move, the batteries are all gone. Flashlight is a loose term, it’s more of a spotlight. With the cubicle of a room lighted up, I give chase. I never knew the fat little prick could move so fast. Squealing in fear and ducking under legs and chairs, he escapes me. Running is quite a surprise for me, as I thought he might roll a little better.
BAM! goes the shovel and the fat little fuck is out. Click! goes the spotlight and the room is dark. I am joined by eight others in our full course meal of pig skin, pig’s feet, liver and onions. Haggis was desert. You could taste the Chef Boyardee and TV dinners like a new flavor of ice cream. Though not appetizing at all, it filled us full. They say I’m sick, they say I’m going to Hell, and they say I’m going to die. I say I’m hungry, I say I’m full, and I say I’m surviving.
Bzzt-bzzt goes the radio. Time glowing red is the only light we see, static the only sound. Voices bzzt in and out. Move the antenna someone suggests. The natural antenna mover person I am, I find the best connection. “For those....ust tuning in, this is the EBS: Emer...cy Broadcast Sys.... The panic-stricken citizens of America, who have hidden themselves in their hom.....unkers,” “I think that’s us guys,” “are advised by this Government Issued statement claiming, ‘There is not, and never was, a cause for alarm. All warnings of inevitable disaster have been false alarms and, in some cas.....est the EBS. I repeat, all warnings of inevitable disaster have false alarms and, in some cases, drills in order to test the.....pologize for any inconvenience these tests may have caused you. Thank you, and God bless.”
Oh. Shit.

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And if you hadn't noticed, I was fresh off a binge of Chuck Palahniuk when I typed it up....
We often went to the cinema, the screen would light up and we would tremble, but also, increasingly often, Madeleine and I were disappointed. The images had dated, they jittered, and Marilyn Monroe had gotten terribly old. We were sad, this wasn't the film we had dreamed of, this wasn't the total film that we all carried around inside us, this film that we would have wanted to make, or, more secretly, no doubt, that we would have wanted to live.

El Duderino

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Short Stories, yeah?
« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2004, 08:19:30 PM »
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yeah, i like that a lot, and it is very Chuck Palahniuk. nice job.
Did I just get cock-blocked by Bob Saget?

 

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