Have I told you that C.W. has taken up reading? Oh yes. He’ll fold into the shape of an Oxford Don and read for hours these days. It’s a welcome relief from some of his shenanigans. He says it’s a sort of punishment meted out to him by the Falloonian Elders for that movie theater incident.
Anyway, he seemed to be taking a break for I found him on my wife’s computer this morning pecking away like a student finishing an overdue paper.
“You know you’re going to die,” I said. “Don’t you?”
“Wait one,” he said, and finished a thought. Then he looked at me. “What’s your problem?”
“Not my problem,” I said. “Yours. When she wakes up and catches you on her computer, you’ll be a dead ma…, uh thi.., uh alien.”
“It’s okay,” he said. “She told me I could.”
“Write a book.”
“A book about what?”
“Yes, perfect husbands.”
“What did you tell her you would call it?”
“I Married A Monster.”
I sat down. “Does it have a plot?”
“Are you at liberty to share it?”
He thought for a moment. “Why not?” He looked away and started to speak.
“Just a moment,” I said. I rose and walked to the coffee pot and poured myself a healthy portion. I returned and sat. I sipped and savored the taste. “This had better be good,” I said.
“Okay,” he said. “So there is this woman who wants to create the perfect man, see?”
“I can’t imagine where this might be going,” I said, “but proceed.”
“So she takes the raw material and first decides that he needs no education or understanding of any body of knowledge, other than blind obedience to commands … her commands.”
I said nothing.
“So,” he continued, “she educates him by force-feeding a 24-hour barrage of meaningless input from a TV monitor, designed to make him hate and fear the outside world and distrust any authority but that of his handler.”
“I can’t see,” I said, “how any woman would want that. But it’s your story.”
“Then,” he said, “she subjects him to an intense behavior modification program.”
“Designed to do what?”
“Despise any other living species other than his immediate handler. The slogan is: ‘Inside good. Outside bad,’ and this produces a rabid person marked by the general hatred, distrust or contempt of the human species or human nature.”
I interrupted. “A what?”
“What I just said.”
“Did you mean misanthrope?”
“Of course,” he said. “That’s why I said it.” He sighed his sigh of exasperation contempt. “Now may I continue?”
“Sure,” I said. “What is next?”
“As in there is a paradise filled with pizza and ice cream reserved for those who obey.”
“So this is it?”
“No, there is one more step,” he said.
“And it is?”
“She has people who appeal to his developing instincts counsel him.”
“About how successful and happy he will be when he is like them, and rich … how filthy rich he will be.”
“This is how they became rich?”
“Oh no,” he said. “They were born rich, but he is so baffled by now that he forgets things.”
“I must leave soon,” I said. “Want to hit me with the ending?”
“Well of course,” he said. “She thinks she has created the perfect husband: obedient, unthinking, unquestioning, fiercely loyal, protective, distrusting of strangers, and disciplined.”
|I can't see why Mrs. Big Dope is so mad. |
It looks like a perfect husband to me. - C.W.
“Can’t you imagine what occurs?”
“The law of unintended consequences?”
“In a hard external covering in which the kernel of a nut is enclosed,” he said.
“Yes,” I said. “In a nutshell. And the ending?”
“She is gazing out over a dead, cratered, and smoldering landscape where her house once stood.”
“And the final line?”