Poor Mojo's Almanac(k) Classics (2000-2011)
| HOME | FICTION | POETRY | SQUID | RANTS | archive | masthead |
Fiction #78
(published Early, 2002)
Trying Not To Laugh Out Loud
by Robert Y. Rabiee

Riding on a Northbound M5 bus, I found it ironic that Today's Man dresses just like yesterday's. Does that strike you as odd? It struck me as odd.

The bus ride was uneventful. An old fat woman sat in the seat across from me — that's the most exciting thing I can think of. Oh, and seeing that guy plummet to his death from the 23rd floor of a Sixth Ave. office building. I guess that and the fat woman were the two highlights.

You don't know what life is until you've seen death. Or a good concert. Of course, it's best to see a death at a good concert, like at Altamont. I would give anything to have seen the Angels nail that guy. Then maybe I could go to sleep at night without praying to see someone get hit by a car on Park and 35th.

That'd be nice.

So I took a nice, long walk, trying to scope out more human tragedy. What a fucking disgrace. . .

The most I saw was some black guy crying at the Sheep's Meadow. I was really hoping to see someone get run over by an N.Y.P.D. cruiser.

Why is the world against me? Oh, sigh.

I sat outside Tavern on the Green for a while, just trying to get into a happy place. A breakup would've complimented my nicotine buzz quite nicely. Or even a mugging. Maybe just a jogger tripping on a crack in the pavement or something.

Wait. . . I don't want you to get the wrong impression of me. I'm not a dangerously unhealthy person. . .

I'm not a smoker, is what I'm saying. So don't worry about me.

I'm doing just fine.

Do this for me — think of the worst pain you've ever suffered. The most hideous pain you've felt, the most tragic event, the deepest embarrassment. Now type it out and e-mail it to me at redrockszq@hatemail.com.

I'll write a song about, but not before taming the inevitable erection I'll get after reading it.

Don't believe me? Just ask my ex. I'd have to watch Saving Private Ryan — you know, that D Day scene — before we could screw.

Why? Well, mainly because she wouldn't let me watch Schindler's List.

I respect a religious person. I don't like them, but I respect them. I only like a religious person when lions are tearing them limb from limb.

You must think I'm just awful. The most terrible person that's ever lived, right? A sick social pariah. I should be cordoned off in a pen somewhere in Madagascar.

Well fuck that, 'cos I'll live forever, and mark my words, I'll be laughing at your funeral.


I don't drink.

I don't smoke.

I don't do drugs.

I run two miles a day.

I'm not just a vegetarian — I'm a fucking vegan.

And guess what, Mother Theresa — you'll be a decaying mass of Liberal Democrat mush while I'm pushing girlfriends to suicide and kicking puppies at the ripe old age of 100. How's that feel? I'll be oppressing the outrageously colored lemurs of Kuala Lampur while your corpse decorates the Lexington Cemetery.

I'll be cackling with joy as an old man has a heart attack on Amsterdam Ave. the minute after his son announced his forthcoming wedding.

And you'll be fucking dead, oh my sweet, sweet author.

Are you trying to kill me, Rob, or was it just a coincidence that a tree almost hit me on the way to the bank? I don't think you like me very much anymore.

You are trying to kill me, you son of a bitch. Why else would my girlfriend and I have this conversation:


"Yes, Cindy?"

"The girls and I have been talking, and we want you dead."


"Yeah — we're going to kill you."

"You mean you and the ones that haven't killed themselves already?"

"Yeah, that's right."

You think you can win, Rabiee? 'Cos I won't go down that easily.

Face it; I'm fun to write.

Aren't I? Well, aren't I?

I think maybe you misunderstand me, Rabiee, which is ironic since you created me. Get it? You fucker? Do you get it?

It's been rough for you recently, hasn't it? Dealing with depression? Thinking about the death of God in a shallow college-boy manner? All the pampered rich boy neuroses starting to come out, huh? I feel sorry for you, Rob. I really do.

You can't control me now, and you know that. So what if you made me — congratulations, you hack, you created a shallow son of a bitch who revels in the pain of others. I know it. You know it. I know it because you know it, which is very Fight Club, and very fucking stupid.

I guess you think I'm your plaything, right? Wrong. Very wrong.

Because I just want you to think back, and this wasn't all so long ago so I think you'll remember, to Seventh Avenue South, that fantastic little strip near Sheridan Square. It was beautiful, wasn't it? This was only a couple of days ago, shortly after you concocted this absurd plan to kill me, so I think you can remember. There you were, fat and tired with messy brown hair, and you were crying. Some 40s movie star friend of yours holding you, and you were crying, crying into Lon Chaney's shoulder for all I care, but crying.

And there was that guy, that one that you made the LIE joke about — remember him? Something you may not have realized is that he was laughing at you. Smiling and laughing, and yeah carrying a forty of Old English in a brown paper bag, but I'll forgive him for that. What do I care? I can videotape his grieving relatives after he dies of heart failure.

Ooh, you're getting real mad now, aren't you?

But he was laughing and smiling, thinking about that son of a bitch crying on the pavement, and it made him happy. Happy, Rabiee. So I'm terrible. I'm horrible.

But I'm happy. And you hate that.

And I bet you'll hate me even more in a second — 'cos that kid was me.

Now this is just immature. Who tries to kill a man with a laser-equipped falcon? Falcons don't even live in Washington Square Park!

An excerpt, for the reader:

Peter Saunders suddenly heard a loud shriek come from behind. In a flash the falcon was upon him, a maniacal gleam in its eye. He barely averted a shot from the laser cannon attached to the great bird's head. And as he lay panting on the ground, his khakis singed at the knee, he could only think two things: how did a falcon acquire a laser, and why is my author — my father — trying to kill me?

A fucking falcon, Rabiee? That's just pitiful! Couldn't I have been mauled by a squirrel? Or castrated by The Singing Nun? A copy of the Kama Sutra wired with high-powered explosives? Maybe an ethereal being with a potato gun? Get off it, Rabiee — you're no good at death scenes.

Ok, so you're starting to scare me, you fat fuck.

Yes, yes — choking on the Body of Christ in St. Peter's Cathedral would've been beautiful and very symbolic. So you can write a death. Can't you just leave me alone?

I don't cause tragedy. I just laugh at it.

And anyway, you created me! You took some events from your everyday life and put me in your place. That's great! Good job!

Suddenly. . .

No, no! Not yet! Look, don't take narrative control from me! Just let me —

Suddenly Peter found himse —

Stop that! Look, I'll right my wrongs just as much as you write them. I'm sorry, that was just awful — please, accept my. . . wh-what, what? Please! I'll be just like the loveable nebbish all of your other thinly disguised characters. . .

Ok, that was a terrible thing to say, I —

Suddenly Peter found himself face to face with a monstrous reincarnation of Ada Murphy, dressed all in rags. Inhaling deeply, she let out a boisterous and deadly high C note, causing windows to shatter and ears to bleed. . .

This fucking hurts, you asshole!

. . . AND EARS TO BLEED. Peter's head was suddenly tight, and the last thing he saw before it exploded into bloody bits was her smiling visage singing into the Edison Wax Cylinder of eternity.

the end

Share on Facebook
Tweet about this Piece

see other pieces by this author

Poor Mojo's Tip Jar:

The Next Fiction piece (from Issue #79):

The Spectators
by Fritz Swanson

The Last few Fiction pieces (from Issues #77 thru #73):

Missing Invisible
by Marni Borek

The Dream of Maxen Welig
translation by Lady Charlotte Guest

The Story of the Good Little Boy
by Mark Twain

The Story of the Bad Little Boy
by Mark Twain

Leaves of Absence
by Marcy Jarvis

Fiction Archives

Contact Us

Copyright (c) 2000, 2004, David Erik Nelson, Fritz Swanson, Morgan Johnson

More Copyright Info