nonfiction about things that didn't happen

Tuesday, July 21, 2009



Once there was a man who applied to be on a quiz show and got on it. So he spent the time between his audition and his appearance trying to remember as many things as he could.

Because the thing was that he didn't really have any money and had no choice, he thought, but to win the quiz show. So he tried to remember as many things as he could. Cheddar.

On the day of his appearance he drove to the studios. The other contestants were waiting in a room that was cream and burgundy. He spoke to them but he didn't listen because want to lose all the things he had remembered. Europe. Czech. Prague. Praline. Chocolate. Stomach. Pancreas. Body. HMS Endeavour.

When they were filming the show he was doing well, then in a break the floor manager said "you look a bit hot". The next thing that happened was that the man's brain became so hot that it reached boiling point. The way this became known to the floor manager was through the ears, as a hot sticky liquid. "I thought it was wax, or something" is what he later said to his boyfriend.

Once the police said it was okay, one of the runners mopped up the man's brain and squeezed it out into a bucket. Another one of the runners poured the brain, which was now diluted with water, down the sink in the bathroom.

The man's brain became more dilute every second as it rushed down the drain, and then another bigger drain, and then flew out into the sea. Over time the brain became entirely separate, and completely ceased to exist, as the trillions of atoms made homes in different parts of the ocean. They became part of the water cycle. They whooshed up, hovered, fell down. They were washed ashore. They went to the city. They had side projects. Some were given jobs. Some helped make animals. Some helped dismantle them. Two were were forced to fight each other, and both died. And, Once in about every million years, four or five atoms that had once been the brain of the man came so close as to almost touch. Jungle. Jakarta. Miso. Mall. Aerodynamic. Bluebird.


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