[Ex-is-tense, 1,667 words, Genre: Experimental]
* Image courtesy of Dirk de Bruyn
Dee had just stumbled upon what was really going on. That was, reality was being revealed to him. Existence was being revealed from behind the curtain of facades and illusions. It occurred earlier that day when he went to the gym. He had just finished his workout and then went to the closest supermarket to buy cigarettes and a bottle of iced coffee. As he sat at the side of the supermarket, drinking his iced coffee and smoking a cigarette. A couple came up to him. The man, or what appeared to be a man, stood by the car. His partner came up and greeted Dee. She had straightened short blonde hair, she had a dog of the staffee breed on a leash.
“Don’t worry, he’s just coming up to say hello.” She told Dee as the dog made its way towards him.
Dee petted the dog and spoke, “Hello fella. How are you today?”
The woman spoke, “I was going to go to the gym today, but instead I had a beer. What have you been up to?”
“Well, I just went to the gym. And now I’m relaxing, having this iced coffee and a cigarette.”
“Okay then, have a nice day.” The woman, as she walked away, began to hum to herself a song. It was the song, ‘If God had a name.’ Dee finished his iced coffee and slowly began to hum to himself the song, unaware of what the song was. As he rode his bicycle back home, the song began to ferment into his mind until it reached a point that it bore fruition and began singing the song out loud. As he rode his bicycle, he sang to himself, “Yeah, God is Great! Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!”
He arrived home. Made himself a coffee and smoked a few more cigarettes. He had to go into the library that day to access the internet and apply for a few more jobs. So he caught the bus into town. All the time quietly singing that song to himself as he made his way into town. He received angry looks from the men around him, he didn’t understand why. And then he thought about the lyrics of the song that he was singing. That is when existence begun to unfold before his very eyes.
The song wasn’t a feel good song, as he imagined it to be. But what it was, was a song about infidelity. The song was about a woman calling out another man’s name through the act of intercourse. Outside the library a man took him aside, “Do you know what that song is about?”
“Not really, why?”
The man then explained it, “That song. Everyone has lost one of their best mates to that song.”
“What song? If God had a name?”
“Yes, don’t say it. All men hate that song and only evil women like that song.”
“Well, you see when a man and a woman have sex. The woman usually calls out a name during sex. Usually it’s with the man that she’s with. But, it has been agreed upon. For the sake of maintaining order that she should call out the name, ‘God’, instead.”
“Why? I don’t understand.”
“Because if she calls out another man’s name during the act of intercourse, it will drive the man into a rage. Sometimes he kills her, sometimes he kills himself. That’s why women call out the name ‘God’ during intercourse. It helps…”
“It helps with what?”
“It helps the man feel good about himself. It helps avoid issues of jealousy and it makes him feel powerful.”
“Oh, I see.”
“Yes, but that song. That song is evil. Don’t sing that song… They will chop off your penis if you sing that song. Where did you hear it?”
“Well, it’s a catchy tune. I think I was talking to someone at the supermarket and then they started humming it.”
“Bastards! That’s how they get you!”
“What? I don’t understand.”
“Look, I’ll take you to the men’s room and show you.”
So the stranger took Dee to the men’s bathroom in a public toilet, dropped his pants and underpants to show him it. Instead of his genitals. There was a plastic straw sewn up in the place of where his penis and balls used to be. Then, a slow drizzle of urine began leaking out of the straw, “God damn it! It’s leaking again.”
Dee turned away in disgust, “Pull your pants up! Pull your pants up!”
“I can’t. I have to let the liquid drain out.”
Dee staggered out of the men’s toilet. He looked around and everywhere around him he saw fully grown men, giving him evil stares. He saw one man who sat on a bench being comforted by another man. The man on the bench was weeping. He called out to Dee, “You bastard! We’ve all lost best friends and lovers to that song! How could you?! You bastard!”
Dee didn’t know what was going on. The other man, the unic, Dee guessed is what you’d call him, had told him what was going on. He ran to the bus stop, avoiding all the men that had gathered around him. They wanted to do something to him, Dee didn’t know what exactly. Dee was lucky enough not to find out, because the bus back home had just arrived. He got on the bus and sat down, beads of sweat and a deep fear rising up in him. The only other two people on the bus were the bus driver and another woman.
The radio was playing, the spokesperson on the radio was presenting, “Someone’s been singing that song again. You know which one. Look like there’s going to be more fights occurring all around town. Whenever someone sings that song, you know that the price must be paid.”
The bus driver then reported something on his radio, “Yep, I see him. He’s on the bus. Yep, I’ll tell you when he gets off.”
As the bus drove there was a man on the side lawn, mowing the grass. He saw Dee and flourished the whippersnapper, like waving his hand at the bus. It was a sign… They were trying to signal that they were going to cut his penis off or something.
The woman on the bus came up to him and started explaining, “So you’re the one they’re looking for. Singing that song, were you?” Dee nodded sullenly. “How could you not know? About that song? About it all. Didn’t someone explain it to you?”
“No… no-one explained anything.”
The woman just sighed, walked away and back to her seat. Then Dee began to sweat profusely. Trying to work out what was going on and what was going to happen next. He got off the bus and returned home. To his block of flats. There, sitting outside was his neighbor. His neighbor was smoking a cigarette. “So, been singing that song, have you?”
“What song? What are you talking about? Everything is so confusing.”
“Didn’t anyone explain it to you?”
“It. Life. Existence.”
“What is it?”
“Well, when IVF, that is in vitro fertilization, was created in the nineteen sixties. It created an odd effect on the populace. An underground movement occurred.”
“What underground movement?”
“I’m getting to that. In the underground movement, certain criminal elements started to arise. These criminal elements began to sever the genitals from males that they saw as unfit for breeding. It was a mass effect. You notice that most men in their forties and beyond have got stomachs.”
“That’s because they’ve lost their genitals and those genitals were responsible for generating testosterone within their anatomy. As soon as their systems stopped producing that testosterone, their bodies gave out and created these testosterone free bodies.”
“So, some of these criminal leaders allowed for their soldiers to keep their genitals for the simple sake of pumping testosterone throughout the body. But the leaders of these criminal groups did not allow their soldiers to breed. The leaders of the criminals would masturbate and collect their semen that would then be used in IVF procedures to take over the world.”
“Take over the world?”
“Yes, taking over the world through genetics. The criminal leaders would inseminate fertile females. Outbreeding the rest of the population whose genitals had been mutilated. The criminal leaders were all fighting amongst themselves to outbreed the rest of the population. There were different groups.”
Dee was getting agitated by this stage, “What the hell does that have to do with me singing that song?”
“Well, didn’t someone explain that to you? About the lost loves…”
“Listen. They’re going to come for you. They’ll give you a choice. Either the gun or the knife.”
“The gun or the knife?”
“Yes, think about it.”
Dee thought about it. If he chose the knife he would lose his genitals, if he chose the gun then… Well, they’d probably just kill him outright. Dee went back inside to his home and then heard a bell being rung through-out the street. A man in an ice-cream van was ringing out a bell and calling out over a loud speaker, “Bring him out! He’s in one of these houses. Bring him out!”
Dee sat inside as the sound went out across the street. His nerves were slowly creeping up on him as beads of sweat ran across his forehead. Then, coming to a resolution, he stood up in a sudden movement.
He went out to the ice-cream truck. There, in the ice-cream truck, stood a man. “So, what do you want? The gun or the knife?”
“The gun, of course.”
The man in the ice cream truck brought out a shotgun. Slowly lowering it in front of Dee’s head. Then, he asked, “Why the gun?”
“Because if this is existence. Well, then, fark existence!” The man in the ice-cream truck pulled the trigger of the shotgun and blew out Dee’s brains.