Sunday, October 25, 2015

Free Bee Stings! (A Prospectus)

“Careening. Yes, that’s it. I like the word ‘careening’ for this. I am a twin and my twin’s name is Antony and the two of us forever risk careening off into literary cliché.

“I assume you know what I mean here. Abel and Cain? The good son and the bad seed? Darkness and light? Yin and yang? Cage and Travolta swapping mugs in that old action flick?

“It’s a really well-worn trope.

“I’ve never liked cliché and I never wished to go careening off into it. I never wanted it because it is bad: Bad to be only half a person. Lousy to possess half a soul. To bomb science class while the other one excels in it. To be the slightly-too-boyish sister of a slightly-too-girly brother.

“I said ‘No thank you’ to that. Never out loud, of course – that would be crazy – but in my life, my actions, my thinking? I said ‘No thank you’ to that from the start…

“…and wound up constantly careening into bad twin clichés.

“I was the shadow self. I was the moon. I literally lived underground in Houston while my brother stayed in some bright Dallas tower!

“It happens everywhere. Just look around us! Look at the people walking by. The slump of the shoulders. The balling of the fists. People get labeled and they get labeled early and they get labeled wrong – and then this is what comes of it.

“I’m not the evil twin and I never was the evil twin but they called me that and they kept calling me that right up until the moment when the good twin abandoned his sick, pregnant wife and her kids.

“Oops!”

It was just about here in my monologue when the bees became an issue.

I handed the remains of my rum to The Shudder. He hadn’t noticed the bees yet. Or maybe he had and just didn’t care.

“If you kill your brother, shoot him from behind a mirror,” said The Shudder. I flapped my hands at the bees.

I’d never heard The Shudder speak before. I’d never been entirely certain he knew English. Hence the honesty of my monologues during our visits.

THRAK! the first bee struck me and I tried leaping from the lawn chair, realizing too late that I was too drunk for such gymnastics. I… well, I careened around and down. I lay in a heap on The Shudder’s balcony.

THRAK! number two to my left wrist.

THRAK! number three to my forehead. 

The Shudder finished off the rum. “I believe you are really underestimating the importance of divine symmetry,” he said. “As your brother grows weaker, you become more and more powerful.”

From my position on the ground, I looked out at the darkening sky.

This was turning into the worst hurricane party ever. 

28 comments:

  1. Sorry about your bee stings,
    You beng labeled the evil twin,
    You having an evil twin,
    You having to live a cliche,
    You having The Shudder that spouts cliches,
    But not sorry for you putting the past behind you and using such cliches to embrace it all and make a wonderful happy-go-lucky life for yourself and those you love.

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    1. Thank you!

      If you think about it, on most Tv shows, the evil twin/villain is the better character anyway. Or at least more fun.

      Except for the inevitable defeat and/or dying part.

      Of course, I watch a lot of Doctor Who, and nobody stays dead there. Especially not villains.

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  2. As a mirror twin, I see the point you are aiming for...

    However, This "Twin Kid" is a bit confused.

    First Born Twin believes - "The Butterfly effect In chaos theory, the butterfly effect is the sensitive dependence on initial conditions in which a small change in one state of a deterministic nonlinear system can result in large differences in a later state"

    Second Born Twin believes "Astrologist has proven that two minutes difference in time of birth does not change your forecast that much."

    BTW - This Public Service Announcement was brought to you by the The Other Shudder

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    1. My brother is definitely more logical and rational than I am, actually. And he's a few minutes younger than me.

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    2. Phantom Fins of Pharmacology

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    3. The druggie fish have the answers!

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  3. Although not twins, don't forget Thor and Loki. Sibling rivalry sucks. Yes, I now use Marvel superhero movies as my frame of reference. Sue me.

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    1. Loki in the movies has that cool horned helmet thing! I would be the evil sibling if it meant getting those horns.

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  4. No wonder we have a bee shortage.

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    1. I keep hearing we do, but they're everywhere in my neighborhood. They congregate on the back of my house every morning and I don't even have any flowers back there - or anything of interest, for that matter. Maybe the scientists are just looking for the bees in the wrong places.

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  5. Are you sure they were bees and not wasps? Bees are typically very docile and reluctant to sting, whereas wasps are like those tiny pocket dogs that are hyper aggressive for no reason or dude-bros who drive raised trucks. Wait, there was a hurricane!?! You can't throw in a hurricane at the end! That's like if, at the end of To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee just threw in, "Oh yeah, and all this happened while frogs rained from the sky and Atticus was fighting off a case of the bubonic plague. Goodnight!"

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    1. I have been working on trying new ways of writing, and one of the things I want to work on is changing my pacing. I tend to start off with one speed and one mood and keep going that way until the end.

      So I wanted to see if I could successfully change direction mid-stream.

      I ended up just sort of telling a story inside out and backwards.

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  6. At least they didn't get in your mouth. "They're in my moooooouth!"

    I like visiting with the bees in my garden, like some kind of drunken Disney princess. They land on me, hang out with me, pollinate the flowers. It's a good time. It's the wasps that give me the kind of treatment you wrote about above.

    Then again, I've never tried to hang out with the bees while in a hurricane. Maybe that would make them a bit more stabby. Or stingy, I guess.

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    1. Yeah, the baromectric pressure throws them into a tizzy. It's ALWAYS the barometic pressure that's to blame. And I can say that, since I know exactly what barometic pressure is and I know that it affects bees.

      Everyone is telling me that these horrible things were probably wasps.

      But one of them looked a lot like John Belushi, so I'm not convinced.

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  7. Y'know, I have never been stung by a bee. By wasps, yes, a couple of times. By bumblebees, yes, also a couple of times. By bees though? Never.

    In fact wasps seem to love me. I'm not talking about stinging. If a wasp is around, it's most certain to buzz me, or even crawl on my arms and face. I've got used to it.

    What the hell. Who am I to judge a wasp anyway.

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    1. These weren't just honey bees. They might have been wasps, but the thing is, it didn't hurt all that much, so I attributed the inferior stinging power to their status as bees.

      Not my area of arthropod expertise.

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  8. Probably yellow jackets. They are aggressive and stupid, like men who drive big black jacked up pick'm'up trucks with Angel Wing Dale Earnhardt stickers on the back window. And they can sting multiple times, unlike bees. The yellow jackets, not the stupid aggressive guys you'll encounter in traffic...

    Sibling rivalry between twins probably started in the womb, with one of them believing "Mom always liked you best!" from the beginning.

    Yellow jackets suck.

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    1. I used to be able to tell the difference on sight. Bees are the round furry ones and wasps are the horned ones that breathe fire.

      When I was a little girl, I sat on a tree stump that was full of yellow jackets and got stung a whole bunch of times. I remember that hurt really, really bad.

      Granted, I was a little drunk on Saturday night when this happened. The alcohol was probably acting as both a physical and mental pain killer.

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  9. Katy. Stinging bees and mirrored twins--horses of a feather. The unkindest cuts of all come from those closest held. Which brings up another topic.

    How do I rid La Casita Johnson de Santa Fe of its Black Widow spider plague. Venomous bitches are everywhere. They seem to be headed indoors with the cold, and the Squirt is beside herself. I dislike genocide but don't have an option as live-and-let-live seems to be a one-way street with these pretty red bellied killers.

    Also, please write a story about fire ants. I'm tired of telling mine and those little shits are among Nature's worst evolvements. Thanks, in advance.

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    1. Hi, Mooner! Fire ants would make a good topic, actually. I spent most of my youth kneeling in ant beds, so I have a lot of stories.

      I don't know how to get rid of sppiders. I've never wanted to be rid of any. Well, I've managed to kill 17 in one go earlier this year, but I don't know that that would work for your problem.

      (Are you not feeling strongly about Walmart either way these days?)

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    2. "...those little shits are among nature's worst evolvements." pure poetry to addled minds everywhere.
      Fuck Walmart! and black widow spiders - except that if you have bws ... you'll not have any other ground insect pest. BWS are ferocious and hungry. I was told that if you notice an absence of visible spiders you probably have Black Widows. they eat everything and don't just sit around a web waiting for dinner to come along either. they hunt. wisht i had more here to johnsonville. MOONER!! send yorn to me ......

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    3. There, Mooner. I got your answer. You get rid of them by sending them to bj.

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  10. I believe they were bees. I cannot doubt you on this. And, I liked the way that the story unfolded.

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    1. Thanks! My comments with you over on your blog led to this. As it turns out, the story ended up just being backwards, basically, but it's a start.

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  11. No winners or losers sans you. I think you won on blog style points. This is really good. Turn the music up:)

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    1. You know, I need to write a music post sometime. I wind up only writing a top ten albums post every year and nothing in between. Everyone deserves to be subjected to my thoughts on music.

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  12. Bees stings feel like Mother nature putting a cigarette out on you. Mother Nature is like a jaded parent who punishes you for being present during one of her unprovoked fits. That's why I'm in favor of turning the rain forest into a parking lot. We'll see how mighty nature feels then.

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    1. And what about sharks? Infesting our swim areas! Ours!

      If these lower life forms want my respect, they need to settle down, move into houses with a fence around it like everybody else, and start playing by the rules.

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