Sunday, June 22, 2014

Wheel, Fire

One dark night back in the Stone Age, two Stone Age bros were slowly rolling the big stone wheel they'd made and they saw a woman walking alone, and they hooted salaciously at her to indicate they had invented this wheel and she should have sex with them. She thought their stone wheel was kinda cool and also there were lots of creepy animal screamy sounds out in the dark, so she went back to their cave and had sex with them because it was better than being eaten by tigers. Thousands of years later, the story survives, and stupid dudes are still cruising around in the dark hooting salaciously at every woman they see, just in case it's a lady who will be really impressed by a wheel. They've even upped the ante -- now they have FOUR wheels, baby, hubba hubba. 

Oddly, very few dudes today remember another piece of history -- the time when a nice German lady, Mrs. Fiedler, who was tired of being hooted at salaciously when she herded the goats home at night, tired of how even an activity as unsexual as tending goats could have an unwanted sexuality pressed upon it by passing yahoos, said to her husband Richard, "May I borrow that flamethrower you invented, dear?" And he said of course. So Mrs. Fiedler strapped on her husband's prototype, and next time she was buzzed by a jeep full of horny beer-hall lederhosers, Mrs. Fiedler lit up their jeep with a rope of fire, and the goats all stood around it watching it glow in the Bavarian darkness, the flames reflecting in their weird goat eyes.

Strange and sad how some pieces of history inform our decisions even today, where other ones get forgotten. 

1 comment:

John Michael Cummings said...

Dear Ecstatic Doggerel:

Will you please consider reviewing my new novel DON’T FORGET ME, BRO, to be published this October-November by Stephen F. Austin State University Press, an imprint of Texas A & M University Press and Texas Book Consortium?

DON’T FORGET ME, BRO deals with themes of childhood abuse, mental illness, and alienated families. (See synopsis below.)

My award-winning debut novel THE NIGHT I FREED JOHN BROWN (Philomel Books, Penguin Group, 2009) won The Paterson Prize for Books for Young Readers (Grades 7-12) and was one of ten books recommended by USA TODAY. For more info:

In addition I've published a collection of short stories, UGLY TO START WITH (West Virginia University Press) Here’s a link to some information about my collection:

My short stories have appeared in more than seventy-five literary journals, including The Iowa Review, North American Review, The Kenyon Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, and The Chattahoochee Review. Twice I have been nominated for The Pushcart Prize. My short story "The Scratchboard Project" received an honorable mention in The Best American Short Stories 2007.

I look forward to hearing back from you.

My email is

Thank you very much.


John Michael Cummings

P.S. Could you kindly give me a reply back to let me know you received this email?

Synopsis of DON’T FORGET ME, BRO

DON’T FORGET ME, BRO deals with themes of childhood abuse, mental illness, and alienated families. The book opens with the main character, forty-two-year-old Mark Barr, who has returned home from New York to West Virginia after eleven years for his older brother Steve’s funeral. Steve, having died of a heart attack at forty-five, was mentally ill most of his adult life, though Mark has always questioned what was "mentally ill" and what was the result of their father’s verbal and physical abuse during their childhood.

The book unfolds into an odyssey for Mark to discover love for his brother posthumously in a loveless family.

DON’T FORGET ME, BRO is a portrait of an oldest brother’s supposed mental illness and unfulfilled life, as well as a redeeming tale of a youngest brother’s alienation from his family and his guilt for abandoning them.

- end -