Dream Bend

Novella excerpt - Chapter 5


(page 3 of 5)

"Like what?"

"Like why aren't we wearing clothes? Like why don't we eat or sleep? Like just where in the hell are we...do you remember where you were before you came to this place?" Tyson was all excited, his jaw muscles jumping like frightened rabbits.

"Yeah, I think so," said Texas Bill. "I was a famous air ace and hero of the Caustic War best as I can recall...led the shitstorm on Mexico City and a bunch of other shit, had more decorations than a fuckin birthday cake."

"You think all that's true?"

"Damn right I do, cause it is."

"I'm not so sure," Tyson replied.

"Well, what the hell were YOU?" Tex asked, getting just a tad pissed at the little fellow because he didn't particularly like to have his heroic past questioned and especially not by some little knothead with a peter little as a redworm.

"Oh, I have a 'past' if that's what you chose to call it," Tyson replied. "Just like everybody else here has. According to what I remember, back in the other I was a producer, a promoter...perhaps entrepreneur would be a better word. "For one thing I produced 'The Suicide Show' for television. It was a weekly series and the premise was we'd find people who wanted to kill themselves and then sign them up to do it in front of our cameras--of course they didn't get anything but a few moments of fleeting fame, but we DID pay their survivors well, perhaps too well. A Congressional sub-committee investigated us and determined that we were exerting undue influence on some of these people...In short, people were killing themselves on national television for the fifteen minutes of fame a fellow named Warhol once mentioned. There were riots when we were canceled, because the viewing public loved nothing more than sitting down with a big pan of hot buttered popcorn and watching some poor fool blow his brain out or hang himself...Those were the two most popular forms, although on one occasion we had this oriental fellow who insisted on disembowelling himself in living color. We pulled a 79 share that night, it broke all records for one night including Roots and the last M.A.S.H. episode!

"After that fell through, I started something called Wheelchair Boxing. We'd take these paraplegics and tie a glove on one hand and put them in the ring. They'd roll around and really beat shit out of one another as best as they could. You know how that kind of crap goes, a guy racks up a few wheelchair wins and he thinks he's ready for the real world champion.

"That's what happened with Irish Ironsides Murgatroyd, a paraplegic and brain-damaged war veteran. He signed a contract to take on the world middleweight champ, a Ugandan named Mooloolie who had two good arms and legs and a punch like a goddamn mule. The Kansas Boxing Commission sanctioned this farce, and Irish Ironsides appeared on every morning TV show across the country, bragging about how he was going to rip Mooloolie apart in less than three rounds. The fight got a lot of international attention and with closed-circuit and ancillary rights from straight TV, the gate for the big fight topped $34 billion--an all-time record.

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About J.Chandler Lee


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I was one of those rare individuals born insane. Institutionalized early, I manage to escape and have managed to remain free from many years, where I hole up on dark mountain nights and ponder the truth of life and death. My vision is somewhat different than the norm.
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