Everything is offensive. There’s no plainer way to put it. There is no topic that can be brought up that is universally inoffensive.
“What about a box of cute newborn puppies?” A voice in my head asked, when I first conceived the opening paragraph.
“Gotta do better than that head voice,” I said. “Try to fight this: ‘Cute, but that breed shits on the floor, no matter how hard you teach ‘em not to. How dare you rekindle that memory.’”
“Okay. How about World Peace and True Love? Surely no one can complain about them,” my head voice said; for it was a stubborn head voice that needed to be smacked on the nose more than once.
“Munitions manufacturers will find something wrong with the first and the second does not exist. Go away, head voice.”
I believe that to know the meaning of life it is first necessary to know of, and how to do, everything else. All languages, every musical instrument, and why some people find durian tasty while others would rather devour the contents in a septic tank before putting durian in their mouths, are just a few of the billions of things one needs to know to know life. It probably goes without saying, but I do not know everything, thus I do not know life. And if I did know the meaning of life I’d be aware of why some things lots of people find funny are not amusing to others.
Although I know that alcoholism is a terrible disease, I find drunks funny. And whilst in a funny mood, recently, constantly, I heard Paul Simon’s Fifty Ways to Leave Your Lover play on the radio. Apparently Simon was taxed ninety percent of those fifty ways because he listed only five. Then something in my fifth Guinness on an empty stomach suggested that there may not be fifty ways to leave your lover, but at least twenty-six to describe a drunkard. That is when another head voice (perhaps that of a Tippleganger ghost, who is a Spirit that whispers Big Ideas in your ear when you are even funnier than usual), suggested that for the weekly wrap up post for this respectable publication that I alphabetize a list of drunkards, using one adjective and one name both beginning with the same letter (i.e. “High Hugh”). Furthermore the voice suggested that I leave some slots open to force audience participation, much like a singer annoyingly exhorting you to clap and sing along when you do not wish to clap and sing along because you and the rest of the audience are paying him to do what he wants you to do for free. Such an item is found at the bottom of this post.
And now, with all the subtlety of pushing a well insured spouse off a cliff, I stagger away from my meanderings and address the purpose of this post. It has come time to pass out the ribbons and wreaths, praises and approbations to this week’s authors and their stories. Two are extremely familiar, one makes a debut and a pair have shed the One Hit Wonder tag. All are sources of pride to Literally Stories.
Monday was Memorial Day in the United States. And it is fitting that Korean War Vet, Tom Sheehan, should once again reset the site record for stories (which he has held for many years), with Cohort Retirees. The only kind of sign you can put up to track Tom’s record (nearing a hundred-forty) is a blackboard. Maybe a scoreboard like at a game. Anyway, the current record is far from safe; Tom continues to write, submit and to get stuff accepted. So we’ll stick with the blackboard.
Tuesday saw the anticipated happy return of David Thomas Peacock. The unique touch he displayed earlier this year is evident in In For a Penny, In For a Pound. (I suggest having a look at his earlier work, Jack’s Back, before too much stuff gets in the way of it).
This week’s newcomer, Josh Walker, debuted with Mother on Wednesday. We love first time authors to the site, and we do hope that they find the accommodations to their liking. From what I see from Josh, his name should appear atop a sizable canon, by and by.
Yash Seyebagheri is piling the successes up so quickly that I can’t keep up–Twenty? Beats me, like with Tom the number changes so often that the best this lazy Ed can do is take a stabbing guess. Yash has his own voice and is someone, with little familiarity, whose quality you’d recognize without hesitation. His pointed Empty Histories graced the site on Thursday.
Monika R. Martyn capped the week with her own shedding of the One Hit Wonder designation (which is still a hell of a lot better than a No Hit Wonder) with The Human Condition on Friday. This is a good subject for Monika because her steady support of the site this year, not only with her fine works, but for the comments and encouragement she gives others makes her someone with humanity, and she should be considered an expert on the matter.
I will not dignify my wrap to this wrap with too many words. I have omitted five letters from the list of drunks to encourage you to sing and clap along: D, H, N, X and Y.
A: Agog Abigail
B: Bombed Bob
C: Curtailed Cathy
E: Effed-up Ed
F: Fricasseed Francis
G: Gobsmacked Gertie
I: Inebriated Ian
J: Jaundiced Jack
K: Killianized Karen
L: Lobotomized Leila
M: Meaded Marianne
P: Pie-Eyed Peetie
Q: Quaffed Quincy
R: Ruined Rudolph
S: Stewed Stu
T: Three Sheeted Tim
U: Ulcerated Uriah
V: Vibrating Victor (whilst coming down)
W: Weavin’ Wilma
Z: Zoned Out Zeke