Tuesday, July 15, 2008


SO FAR IN THIS LITERARY ADVENTURE: Doogie built a time machine with the intention of traveling back to 1894 London and watching H.G. Wells write the first page of his science fiction classic, The Time Machine. Instead he ended up in colonial Philadelphia, where he lost a fight with a pygmy farmer and his battle ogre (who hit Doogie with a bathtub). Doogie woke to find himself a captive in the farmer’s basement, where the farmer raised hobos like cattle and fed them to a race of Molemen™, who traded him gold for human flesh.

The queen of the Molemen™, who was being held ransom by the farmer, was locked in the cage next to Doogie. She gave him a sigul along with instructions to find her father, and revealed a secret passage beneath his cell. Doogie broke through the passage, found the king of the Molemen, and told him that his daughter, the Princess, was indeed alive.

The Molemen mounted a massive offensive against the farmer, who was armed with a death ray from the future which he used to kill King Ralph. The farmer and Doogie fought in the basement, where the farmer shot Princess Amidala with the death ray. The Basement People freed themselves from their cages and ate the farmer alive. Doogie rushed to the Princess’s side and discovered that the death ray hadn’t killed her, it had simply burned all the fur off her body, revealing a beautiful woman underneath. The Princess was horrified to find herself disfigured thus, and wailed in shame.

Catch up with past installments: I, II, III, IV, V and VI.

The Basement People’s clacking teeth, as they ate the farmer alive, sounded like Satan tap-dancing on an empty coffin. Amidala’s screams merged with the Farmer’s death throes, creating an atonal melody that reminded me of the Pixies’s early albums, especially Surfer Rosa. In that moment I had an epiphany: I would make a great music critic. I made a mental note to send my resume to Dog Fancier Magazine once I returned home. If I returned. (Dramatic foreshadowing, or red herring? Read on to find out!)

Amidala wept, knees huddled against her ample, heaving breasts. Holy shit she was hot. Her boobs were big, but not too big, a little more than a handful, which is perfect. Because when you go to grab boobs like that, you’re like “Oh shit, this is more than I can handle!” But it’s not so much that the slack boob meat slips between your fingers and you realize “This really is too much.” With a boob like that, the extra 10% of boob tantalizingly out of reach holds the allure of the unattainable (especially if you only have one arm because your other arm was vaporized by a laser).

I’d like to go on and describe the rest of Amidala’s body, but I’ve already spent a whole paragraph on her boobs, and I don’t want you to think I’m shallow. So all I’ll say is that her personality was incredible, totally bald, and beckoning to me; its silent song wormed its way into the reptilian corridors of my mind.

The Basement People were finishing the last morsels of the Farmer, which wouldn’t take long, since he was a pretty little guy. Perhaps now they would rush over and proclaim me as their savior! Or perhaps they would eat me too, since they had lived their entire lives in cages, like wild animals.

“Princess Amidala,” I said “We have to leave.” She continued to weep, heedless of my words. I pulled her arm, but she wouldn’t budge.

“I’m hideous! Leave me here to die!” She wept.

The clacking of teeth stopped. I looked back over my shoulder and saw nothing but blackness beyond the thin strip of light cast by the open basement door. Then I saw a pair of glowing eyes rise from the floor. Then another. And another. They all turned and stared unblinkingly at Amidala and I.

The Princess followed my gaze to other side of the basement, where the glowing crowd of eyes shuffled closer to us. Amidala shrieked, and the terror in her voice must have awakened some primal hunter instinct within the Basement People, because the pack broke into a run. I could see them appear in the corridor of light and then disappear on its other side: eyes wild, pale arms outstretched, scarlet blood smeared on their pallid lips.

Then a thousand hands were upon me. My stump was still sensitive, and though I swore I wouldn’t scream out, I did as their stubby fingernails scratched my nub. “Stop!” I yelled. “It’s me! The guy who released you all from your cages! Remember?”

They stopped immediately. This was a polite mob. Slowly they released me. One of them, very old, pushed through the crowd and peered into my face.

“You’re the adventurer?”

“Yes, yes, the guy who saved all of you.”

He placed the brass key to the Time Machine in my hand. “This is yours.”

Nervous laughter floated up from the group. One of them spoke. “Geez, sorry we tried to eat you. You know how it can get. Mob mentality and all that.” Everyone apologized profusely.

A thin voice piped up from the back. “I’ll tell you what makes ya’ crazy, it’s the taste of blood.”

At the mention of the word “blood,” all the Basement People stared into space and spoke at once, in a daze: “Blooooooood.”

But Amidala and I were already rushing up the stairs and into the light.

– – –

We were in such a rush to escape the Basement People I didn’t have time to warn Amidala about the carnage she was about to see. Her hands flew to her face, and I put my arms around her. I was looking for any opportunity to put my hands all over her.

The entire house was ruined, a pile of rubble and broken wood.

The carnage was gut wrenching. Fun Fact: Dead Molemen smell awful! Giant worms were squished all over the place, and their segmented halves continued to writhe aimlessly through the rubble. Fran had finally been subdued, held down with thick gold chains and guarded by a dozen Molemen. The precautions were unnecessary, I could see the fight had gone out of her.

Lefty saw Amidala and I and rushed over.

“Is the Princess alright?” he asked.

“Yes, yes, she’s fine, just a little shaken up.”

“Where is she?”

“Well, she’s right here,” I pointed to Amidala.

Lefty looked at the naked, hairless supermodel huddled under my arm. He screwed up his face.

“Ugh, that dog? That’s not the princess. Where is she?”

Fire blazed in the Princess’s eyes. “Insolent swine! Bow before your Princess!”

Lefty recoiled. “Please, hairless wench, be silent.” He turned to me. “Doogie, I don’t know whether to thank you or not. We are free from the farmer, but our victory has come with a terrible price. Are the basement people still alive?”

“Yes,” I said.

“Good. We’re starving.” He gave me a fist bump. “God speed you on your journey, adventurer.”

“Where is my father? He will recognize me,” the Princess said.

It was then we saw the King’s body. Six Molemen carried it on a golden platform studded with burning torches. A procession walked ahead playing what sounded like the theme song to Alf on accordians, while a phalanx of soldiers did the electric slide, shaking golden kooshes.

The Princess tried to rush forward, but I held her back. She watched the funeral procession pass by, tears streaming from her eyes. She turned to me. “Take me with you. There’s nothing for me here.”

I tried to maintain the proper tone of mournful sorrow, but it was difficult.

– – –

Amidala and I got into the time machine and took a quick jaunt to the year 3000, where we spent two weeks vacationing on Titan, Saturn’s largest moon. We lived in a little space hut on the shore of Kraken Mare. We spent our days swimming in Titan’s massive hydrocarbon lakes and hiking its breath-taking cryovolcanoes, and our nights (which last 15 days) were occupied . . . in other ways.

One morning Amidala rushed into the bedroom and shook me awake. “Look, look!” she squealed.

I woke up groggily, looked at her face, and screamed in terror. Amidala had a massive grey handlebar mustache, and her bountiful knockers were covered in whispy grey fur.

“It’s growing back!” She leapt on top of me and showered me with kisses. Her mustache tickled my nose. I prayed for the merciful darkness of night, and realized, ruefully, that another chapter in my adventure had come to an end, and the final chapter was about to begin.

The next installment of Doogie's live comedy show, THE MINISTRY OF SECRET JOKES is on Wednesday, July 30th at Fergie's Pub (1214 Sansom St.)


Steve Saturn said...

I like how accurate the depiction of Titan is. Furthermore, it was very smart to pick Titan as a possible future vacation destination, since it's the most earth-like planetoid in the solar system (dense atmosphere, standing bodies of water). The author's depiction of Earth, however, was far less convincing.

David Sedaris said...

In an earlier installment (I believe Part II) Doogie (what a dumb name) makes the unpleasant realization that his machine travels only in time, not space, so he can't get to England. But in this adventure, he goes to the future and visits Titan. Well how the fuck did he get there? PLOT HOLE!

By the way, check out my new book, When You Are Engulfed in Flames. I think it's my best one so far.

Literary Intern said...

Hi David,

I am one of Mr. Horner's (Doogie) interns. My job is to reply to asinine blog posts such as yours. To answer your question/rude accusation: After traveling to the year 3000, Doogie and Amidala hopped on a space ship and flew to Titan.

By the way, I don't think your new book is all that great.

David Sedaris said...

I do think my new is all that great, and apparently 300,000 other people and the New York Times Book Review agree.

You've got all the answers, don't you little intern? Alright smart guy, riddle me this: Why did the farmer's death ray blow a hole through King Ralph, but only burn the fur off Princess Amidala?

P.S. I'm going to write a charming slice of life short story about how gay you are, and read it on NPR.

Literary Intern said...

Hi David,

Technically that question is about The Time Machine Part VI, not VII, but I'll answer it here anyways. Here's a german quote from that installment:

"The farmer shot wildly into the darkness, but couldn’t see me. Was the laser’s beam dimmer than it had been before? I thought it was, perhaps it was running low of energy. "

Indeed, DAVID, the laser WAS running low on energy, which is part of the reason why it didn't kill Amidala. Her pure heart also afforded some extra protection.

Hey, I have an idea: Maybe if you weren't so busy writing incendiary blog posts, you could write a short story where something interesting actually happens! I think you're jealous because none of your stories have giant squids or Molemen or death rays in them.

Literary Intern said...

Sorry, I meant "germane," not "german."

david sedaris said...

Touche, intern, touche. You have shamed me into silence.

Pruneface said...

This adventure has too many comments. ENOUGH!

David Sedaris said...

I won't be silenced.