Friday, September 27, 2013

Bathroom Monologue: The Head Case

Reed’s head was a book, and one that was three-quarters unwritten.

Penn’s head was a writing utensil. Not a pen or pencil, because even I’m not that bad, but a fine horse hair brush. Penn fell madly in love with Reed, and he went on to scrawl most of the following in the margins of his lover’s head.

Taryn’s head was a fire hydrant. She spat on burning buildings, and for this was considered a hero. She had many unwanted suitors.

The Finn Quintuplets’ heads were fish. They kept trying to swim in Taryn’s spittle, following her around from heroism to heroism. She found this untoward, and so kept her valve shut whenever the Finns were at the similar parties.

If there was someone Taryn admired, it was Antonio, whose head was a water filtration system, and whose head filled hers with the naughtiest thoughts a hydrant can retain without leaking. He was, to Reed’s estimation, Penn’s mental image of himself. Antonio threw the best parties, with the spiciest foods, and interesting foreigners who played the latest music on their heads, and it all would have been perfect if Antonio didn’t own the biggest and most elaborate swimming pool in the city. The Finns always used this as an excuse to come, and so they followed Taryn along through the intricate tubing of the pool. They could be in any room she was.

Marta Maria’s head was the most elaborate swimming pool in the city. It was very hard on her neck, and she got quite lonely having to keep her body two floors below the best parties in the city. Thus Antonio often excused himself early to go downstairs and visit with her, and rub tiger balm on her neck.

Taryn would excuse herself early and follow Antonio to be jealous of Marta Maria’s neck problems.

The Finn Quintuplets tried to excuse themselves, but were stuck up in the pool, unless it was raining. If it was raining, they followed Taryn down and performed obnoxious tricks with flakes of calzone crust.

Marta Maria would have given them all a disparaging look if she were capable. However, she was capable of asking Miss Yaki for help. Miss Yaki was a city councilperson and universally heralded as wise since her head was an idea. If you wanted solutions, you had to look into Miss Yaki’s eyes. Fortunately for Marta Maria, Miss Yaki loved spicy food and was entirely intolerant of it, and so always attended Antonio’s parties, and always ate a bite too much, and always needed a glass of water. As you’d imagine, Marta Maria had always been good at finding glasses of water. Miss Yaki owed her a favor, and Miss Yaki came up with a solution seven seconds later.

Now Penn thought this solution should have been: “That solution, like the rest of this story, is in Reed’s head.”

Reed, however, kept blotting away Penn’s brush strokes. Reed felt that the solution should be: “And they found Rosetta, a nice girl whose head was the world’s best neck support, and Rosetta and Maria Marta fell madly in love, and they explained sexual harassment to the Finn Quintuplets, and Taryn confessed her feelings to Antonio, who let her down gently about his lack of reciprocity, and the two of them instead became casual friends with minimal awkwardness ever after.”

Penn felt that his lover, while cute, was a terrible writer. And so the man with head of pages and the man with the head of a brush argued about the ending for three dawns, until as a gag they started transcribing the best parts of their bickering, the sharpest lines and barbs, and goofiest ideas. It is surely for that reason that Jove showed up in their story, a radiant third-gendered young person with a god for a head, who fixed everything for everyone to everyone’s satisfaction.

If that seems like a disappointing ending, then you’ve likely guessed that by the third dawn, Reed and Penn had stopped taking their joint novel seriously. Co-authoring is very difficult for some people. Partners tend to get ahead of themselves.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Where John Went

This space has been too quiet, don't you think?  Aside from my Friday Flash, The Bathroom Monologues were pretty much dormant for the last week. It still feels like cheating. Does it feel like being cheated? I sure hope not.

Most of my energy had been going into the first feature length screenplay of my life. I can't say too much about it, or who it's for, or what might come of it - not yet. But I can say these three things:

1. It's a Horror movie.
2. In fact, a Slasher movie, responding to the things I grew up loving about them.
3. Specifically those things Scream and Behind the Mask didn't cover. Cabin in the Woods? Ehhh. No.

I'll throw in that Scream 4 was madly underrated. Love that final act enough that I'd pay money for a Scream 5. I'm one of those people. I grew up walking distance from a pharmacy with a VHS section that rented movies for a dollar a day. My siblings can attest to how thoroughly I plumbed the Horror racks. The amount of times I rented Predator 2 alone probably paid for some pharmacist's kid's braces.

That's also why one of my killers is a pharmacist.

Darn it, now I've said too much.

I've also been relatively quiet on all social media because I spent Friday traveling to visit a friend and build a new PC. It's the first computer I've ever built by hand and I learned that I really don't know what I'm doing. There's just enough competence for me to figure out that a zip-tie is caught in a side-fan. Just barely enough. But the new rig is sturdy, non-figuratively cool, and has Word 2003 all loaded up. I think I'm six scenes away from the rough draft being ready to rest in peace.

More than the building of the computer, the driving destroyed me. After six hours at the wheel for two days, I can barely move my ankles, my hamstrings keep waking me up, and my knees, neck and spine all hate me. It was still neat to know I can physically drive that far, even if it means a little agony.

Also, I'm going to start saying "non-figuratively" until we get "literally" back. Or, in case we never get it back. One seems more likely than the other.

What have you been up to?
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