tHE lITTLE bANG tHEORY

Her life was a movie, made up of all movies, every genre one can live and this is how she lived it.

Born on a bed of nails, the daughter of a monk and a pimp. Two fathers, no mothers, yet from day one the girl more than made up for the lack of oestrogen in the home. You see, she was blessed with a Nasonov’s gland, the first human to be so. Her pheromonic radius cast a net of many miles into which men fell, unable to walk where their legs intended. Instead, they back-pedalled into her vicinity, where their gender would sway.

You could say things progressed, or regressed, at pace. Within a month, world peace was upon us as 93% of mankind became womankind. Those who resisted, resisted with all they had left – their stone age genes. These last few million men ate rocks, but despite a brief spike in palm hair, they too conceded their sex.

Animals followed, as they do, creating several super-species of she-creature en route. Mother Earth sat back on her axis, took up pilates and deep stratospheric respiration. In doing so she lucked out and met another planet that just happened to be hurtling by. And so begins the little bang theory (all lower case please ed) that led to the litter of planets that shall sustain all living things unto the infinite day (and beyond).

The end (aka, the beginning).

DEATH KARAOKE

No, this isn’t Russian Roulette rebranded, he implored.

It is a game, of sorts, he thought.

You choose a dead musician, he declared.

You relive a one-on-one concert with them, a crowd of you and only you, he explained.

They sing and perform as though there are 100,000 of you, he contextualised.

You feel like you’ve had sex via song with them, he exaggerated.

You only get one go at this, he clarified.

You say Sia, he hears Cilla.

Surprise, surprise, he sings.

You run for a cliff.

MOTHMAN

They had no idea how or when he had moved into their attic. He just had. They’d never have known but for one sleepless night, troubled by work, she heard him above her.

It was 4:15am. It wasn’t a dream – she never dreamt. It wasn’t a ghost – she didn’t believe. It wasn’t a rat – a rat can’t whistle.

No daylight, no food, no sanitation. What did he do up there? How did he survive up there? Did he sip from the drips of the old water tank? Why here? Why us? Did he plan to kill them in their sleep?

Her husband doubted her sanity. She implored him to call the police. I am the police he reminded her. He scoured the attic for the eight time. As ever, no man, only moths, in search of light.

THE INEFFECTUAL INTELLECTUAL

He had a way with words.

A wayward way.

Every thought he thought fell over before it reached his mouth.

What came out weighed less than the air into which it was born.

This perennial disappointment became his calling card.

People near and narrow raced to the back of the queue to hear him talk.

Destined to lead a light life, he eventually found his purpose in an industry made for him….politics.

THE CHOKE COLLAR CASE

“Attagirl!” said the man, grabbing the lead.

The bitch looked at him, as if to say fuck you.

The man won, as he always did.

They walked.

They returned.

The bitch ate and the man drank cheap instant coffee.

Until one day.

Same “Attagirl!”

Same result.

Same walk.

Same meal.

Except this time, the man sat down before his coffee and nodded off, with the lead around his neck.

The bitch crept up to the man, took the hand strap of the lead and started to pull.

Only once the lead was taut did the man awaken.

A little too late.

The bitch left via the back door.

The police tracked her down.

The coroner corroborated the cause of death.

It went to court – the first time an animal had been tried for murder.

The case collapsed.

The bitch walked free.

The end.

ZAQIK JOX #74,857

Zaqik Jox was born lucky.

His mother knew the moment he came into the world.

He wasn’t meant to live but did.

The surgeons had written him off days before, but Mrs Jox insisted.

She knew as only a mother does. She refused to concede to no heartbeat.

She felt a different sign of life within.

Not a thump but a purr.

Her inner voice told her to ignore their scans and so called expertise.

At 23:20 on Wedsnesday 16th December 2015, she gave birth to a screaming child that had been pronounced dead up until that moment.

And so began the Pre-Euthenasia Act, or the right of PEA as it became known.

The boy was given the name Zaqik Jox, after his improbable first few seconds of life.

A name of just 8 letters that would win him the world Scrabble title by the age of 15 and a special reality guest star role in the live action Dr Seuss biopic.

MRS SECONDARY

She dealt with her condition as if it wasn’t there. It didn’t stop her but it did delay her. She invented the secondary syndrome. Every time she thought she had a situation under control, a second wave would come along and throw her off beam.

She’d suddenly sweat for no reason, on a dry brow, with no pressure, in a regular room. This late deluge could arrive unannounced even if her glands had already shed enough moisture to re-irrigate the Gobi Desert.

She lectured in secondary sleep. The kind of nap you have deep into the morning after a disrupted night. She taught insomniacs to master this technique, and cast off the guilt accrued when rocking up late for work.

When it came to sex, she developed what became known as orgasm echo. This random release of deep-felt carnal joy crept up on her up to 24 hours after making love. No specific act triggered the reaction. It could erupt anywhere: a supermarket aisle, turning right at a junction, at the launderette where she worked. She made no attempt to disguise things as those around her hid, or called the paramedic.

In her 80′s she even died twice. Only at the third time of asking did she finally ‘peg it’, as she always put it. She gave her body to medical science. Her condition solved motor neurone disease.

OH MAYOR, WHERE ART THOU?

You just knew she’d end up as mayor. Anyone who clears up the dog shit of others for a decade deserves to be repaid in kind. This was that day. Once in office, she began to haul the town off its scabby knees. She led gangs into tourism, running OD-themed hotels and peddling post-modern sink-estate souvenirs. She persuaded former prostitutes to dig up a derelict road and plant a community veg plot in its place, winning a Chelsea rosette en route. Teenagers who’d missed years of school suddenly started to read in their teens, sparking an ill-lit genre that mugged the publishing industry in broad daylight. Yet as the town improved, she felt an unease. Gentrification made her sick. With drugs, homelessness and poverty off the agenda, she left her post. Transport and refuse felt fickle. One week into her 49th year, she left town and was never seen again. To this day, she’s still missing. They named a square after her. As far as they know, she’s never been back. They live in hope.

NATIONAL HAND GALLERY

He wrote a list every day on the back of his hand. Always in black biro. Always a Bic. Always upper and lower case. Yesterday’s list never quite disappeared, so over time the layers of words began to build up their own epidermal fabric. Graphologists and geologists fought over him. By 70 the National Portrait Gallery stepped in with a cryogenic bid. Upon his death, his hand became the founding work of their new annexe, the National Hand Gallery.

THE QUEUIST

He loved to line up. Never side by side. Only ever in a queue.

He found comfort in being sandwiched between people with their breath warm and moist on his neck as, in turn, he stared at the way the hair parted on the head ahead.

Yet the moment he hit the front, he fled.

The point was not to be served.

It was just…to…wait.

He found the suspense pleasing, fulfilling, arousing. He dreamt of being in a circular queue that went round and round, never ending, never starting.

Was he waiting for God? Or Godot? Or God knows what?

All we know is he met his death doing what he loved.

In a queue.

Near a cliff.

Among lemmings.

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