Open on the interior of a small log cabin. MA is at the stove, stirring a large steaming pot. APRIL lies on one of the beds reading a book. The front door bangs open and snow billows in as PA enters, wearing his polarbear-skin coat and carrying an armful of wood. His beard is caked in ice.
PA: I'm home! I brought this wood I chopped for the fireplace. Boy oh boy, a man could freeze to death out there! Life sure is hard in the old frontier times.
MA: You said it! I've been slaving over this wood stove for thirteen hours just to make us a tasty meat pie for dinner. Luckily I'm almost done.
There are two things of which I am certain. The first: Death awaits us all. The second: The majority of human beings will end up saying at least a couple of words within their lifetime. When examined individually, neither of these events seems significant. A guy drops dead in front of you? Eh, big deal. It was bound to happen sooner or later. You hear someone speak? So what. Not surprising at all. Well, unless you're deaf. Then it'd probably be pretty shocking. Well, unless you're a deaf schizophrenic. Then you might not be too shocked by a disembodied voice.
Although...what if you were a schizophrenic who's been deaf since birth? Then you wouldn't even know what human speech sounds like. So if the voice of, say, Micheal Landon popped into your head one morning and started shouting things like "Chew on that baby's arm!" "Start a fire in the public library!" "Those dogs are laughing at you!" "Masturbate into an aquarium!" it would probably just sound like "Blaguhblagublah!". Also you wouldn't even know it was the voice of the dreamy-eyed heartthrob who played "Pa" on Little House on The Prairie and "Teenager Who Gets Turned Into a Werewolf" in I Was A Teenage Werewolf you were hearing, so the fear you feel wouldn't even be mitigated by the fond childhood memories that would've normally been conjured-up upon hearing said voice. Anyway, just some food for thought.
Celebrity last words!
This guide is concerned with only the latter type of demon, so those of you who've come here seeking advice on how to overcome personal demons (like a fear of flying, compulsive overeating, or the fact that Sixpence None The Richer's 1998 hit single "Kiss Me" has inexplicably been playing on a loop in your head for the past fifteen years) would do well to look elsewhere for assistance because this guide only covers demons of the supernatural variety.
So less "Doctor Phil" and more "Sweet little girls hefting grown men over their heads and tossing them through plateglass windows, middle-aged men scrawling glyphs upon the walls in their own excrement while gibbering in elder tongues, and kindly old grandmothers scuttling into your room late at night on dislocated limbs and unhinging their jaws to disgorge huge clouds of bees that swarm down your throat and eventually you choke to death on them because who could even breathe through all those bees?".
Nobody, that's who.
I awoke to the aroma of freshly-ground coffee. I could tell it was expensive coffee due to the way it smelled: Expensive. It made sense, of course. Only the finest coffees would be permitted in the mansion of infamously-handsome sex playboy Rick Mexico. I let out a sigh and began to reminisce about the countless acts of debauchery the two of is had engaged in the night before, but a sudden knock at the door jarred me from my reverie. The door swung open, and a small wrinkled Cuban hobbled in, clutching a tray of erotic breakfasting materials.
"Hot dog! Eats!" I cried, greedily rubbing my hands together before seizing several handfuls of what I took to be vagina-shaped pastries. As what shoved these into my mouth, Rick strode through the door.
"Good morning beautiful" he grinned, his teeth flashing like some diamonds someone was shining an LED flashlight onto, "I see you're enjoying Koko's novelty baked goods."
So what can you do to survive an encounter with one of these godless, swirling deathtubes? Well, for a start, you can read the rest of this article for some juicy tornado survival tips.
The other alternative is to rely on idiotic folk wisdom like "you get what you pay for". But of course, whenever any reasonably wealthy person follows "you get what you pay for" to its logical conclusion they end up buying German cars, $7 bags of "organic" corn chips, and eight thousand dollar sets of Bose speakers simply because these were the most expensive options available to them at the time.
Anyway, here's a bunch of entertainingly-overpriced crap.
The door opened, revealing an extraordinarily handsome man in a white leather three piece suit. He extended his hand, "Hello, I'm eccentric billionaire Rick Mexico. I made my fortune by being successful in big business. I'm looking for a sexually-active woman with whom I can share my material and emotional riches. Won't you come in?"
"Pleased to meet you, Mr. Mexico," I said, stepping into the foyer and fanning my brow with an ornate Asian fan, "You'll have to forgive me for not returning your handshake, but your masculine jawline has my heart fluttering like the pages of a butterfly book."
"You're not so bad yourself, sweet cheeks." He laughed a meaty laugh, and his eyes began scanning my body like a pair searchlights on a big city skyscraper.
To whom it may concern,
I know letters like this are a dime a dozen, but I hope you’ll hear me out, because I've got an axe to grind, and I'm afraid I can't just let sleeping dogs lie. I know what you're thinking: My advice is about as welcome as a skunk at a lawn party. If it's not one thing, it's another! But make no bones about it, there's a method to my madness, and once the cat is out of the bag, you'll be thanking your lucky stars that I got down to brass tacks instead of fudging and mudging like a lost dog in high weeds. So let's run this up the flagpole and see who salutes it.
Frankly, most of the time all I need to do is raise my thumb and aim my index finger at a woman as if I'm preparing to fire an imaginary flintlock pistol, and a woman'll have torn her clothes off and tackled me before I am even able to pretend to pull the imaginary trigger, causing the imaginary flint to strike the imaginary frizzen and ignite the imaginary gunpowder and propelling an imaginary lovebullet into her heart (causing her to fall deeply in love with me).
Of course this is not always the case. On occasion, I do come across women who (for whatever reason: blindness, foolishness, lesbianism) don't immediately realize how utterly captivating I am. Women like these always require a bit of convincing before they'll begin demanding sex from me. Fortunately, this process is not overly complex or difficult, provided you know all the right things to say (which of course, I do). And Double-Fortunately, I'm more than happy to share some of these "right things" (great pickup lines) with you.
And please, there's no need to thank me. I don't perform public services like these for accolades. A good deed is its own reward.
What if I told that written poetry was on its way out? What if I told you you there was another way to enjoy poetry? What if I told you that instead of READING words arranged on a page, you could rip a poem open, hollow it out, and wriggle INSIDE of it in order to literally EXPERIENCE the thoughts and emotions of its author?
If you're like most people, you'll almost certainly respond to these questions by screaming until your father runs into the room wielding a fire poker and bellows, "Sweet Christ! How the hell did you get into our house?! Answer me! ANSWER ME YOU SON OF A BITCH! Cheryl?...CHERYL! Call the police! There's a goddamn MANIAC in Katie's room! Jesus God, HURRY!"
That, or you'll just ask me to explain what I'm talking about. For simplicity's sake, I'm just gonna go ahead and assume you've asked the latter question so I can get started.
THE 2014 HOLIDAY INTERNET GUIDE TO PRODUCTS ONE COULD HYPOTHETICALLY PURCHASE AS GIFTS FOR OTHERS IF ONE WERE SO INCLINED12.2014
So you know what? I'm gonna make their holiday wishes come true. Ladies and gentlemen...put your hands together, pull them apart, and bring them together again forcefully enough to create a sort of slapping sound for The 2014 Holiday Internet Guide To Products One Could Hypothetically Purchase As Gifts For Others If One Were So Inclined.
This is not to say that children are worthless during a fire. Obviously their unconsious forms can be stacked against walls to facilitate access to otherwise unreachable portals of egress, and certainly fastening a number of the pudgier kids around your waist before you leap from a dangerous height would greatly improve your chances of surviving impact, but this isn't I'm talking about. This article is meant educate kids about how they can make themselves useful before they black-out, not after.
Now by this point you may be saying, "You talk a big game old man, but why don't you put your money where your fat mouth is and tell me exactly what I, the average non-firefighting child, can actually do to survive a fire?". A fair question, to be sure, but I'm not sure why you needed to phrase it so rudely. Honestly. I'm only trying to help here.
In fact, you know what? I'm not even sure a kid like you deserves quality fire safety tips. Why should I waste my time educating angry, spiteful little shits? Tell you what: Since you obviously aren't interested in my actual fire safety tips, I'll create a list of fire safety tips especially for undeserving, mouthy children who don't respect their elders.
This should teach you.
Alas, the same cannot be said of adults. As humans age, we develop "tastes" and the ability impose "value judgments" upon "objects" people "hand to us". For example: If you were to offer a full-grown woman a bucket filled with antifreeze and say "Drink this, it's antifreeze", she would almost certainly refuse. Not so with a child. In fact, a recent survey conducted by the Pew Research Center found that a full 100% of children surveyed happily drank antifreeze out of a bucket. So yeah, in conclusion...uh...kids...and, umm...they love...not good...boardgames?
Dammit. I blew it. This segue is the worst. There's no way I can make it work now. I guess I'll just have to start the article manually. Hold on a sec, let me find the thing here. Alright, got it. Let's see if this works.
We all know of microprocessor computer, but do we know each part and piece that make it function? No. Of course, no. Why even learn such foolishness? Here is reason: Today, computer is much importance at all job. You work at school? You work at police? You work at petrol station? All these are putting the entry into computer.
So yes, learning computer is no joke. So let's come together with me...and we learn the world of computers.
For example, I was able to come up with several fairly decent ideas a few weeks ago when I placed a rusted can of quintuple-filtered spray butane to my left nostril and held the nozzle open until the room began to vibrate and shriek and indescribable colors exploded all around me and my screams became muffled as the walls pushed in and in until consciousness failed me and I knew no more.
Upon awakening, I found myself entombed in a small chamber of pulsating, amaranthine velvet. Though I did not know it at the time, it was to be my home for the next several centuries. And although the pod was cheaply furnished and the lone bookshelf contained only a small rumpled-up stack of older Highlights magazines (in which most of the mazes and puzzles had already been completed...IN PEN), I was determined to make the best of a bad situation.
So while it is true that the endless I spent imprisoned in that were neither interesting nor eventful, I was able to spend a lot of quality time reflecting on my life, which in turn lead me to consider the human condition and eventually the very nature of existence itself. And while it is also true that none of this rumination ever resulted in anything in anything other than a drowsiness or a mild headache, I did end come up with a few pretty decent ideas for alarm clocks while I was in there.
So here are some of those.