Paxo’s Progress by Mike3839 on @DeviantArt https://www.deviantart.com/mike3839/art/Paxo-s-Progress-573023324
I haven’t read a book quite this fast in a long while, and I was barely trying. Published in our fair nation’s Bicentennial year, we have the story of twins separated by their judgmental parents, and a granddaughter the brother twin comes to care for. Family is the core virtue of this satire, even to the point of ludicrousness. Don’t expect it to be an endorsement of what we laughably call ‘family values’. Our protagonist is essentially a modern Neanderthal who with the help of his sister Eliza becomes by turns a genius, an idiot, a pediatrician, the last President of the United States and the King of Manhattan after a flu and the Green Death destroys civilization as we know it.
A means is also discovered to contact the Afterlife which turns out to be as boring as nails, so much so that it’s referred to as a ‘Turkey Shoot’. The biggest religion at the end of the world is the Church of Jesus Christ the Kidnapped. The insinuation that the Chinese are shrinking in stature may have been written in jest but by today’s standards or any other, it might be considered racist. The style is breezy and pure Vonnegut, sparing in detail and broadly farciful with even the most tragic of events. A step up from Breakfast of Champions.
Well, I am used to the rootlessness that goes with my profession. But I would like people to be able to stay in one community for a lifetime, to travel away from it to see the world, but always to come home again,…Until recent times, you know, human beings usually had a permanent community of relatives. They had dozens of homes to go to. So when a married couple had a fight, one or the other could go to a house three doors down and stay with a close relative until he was feeling tender again. Or if a kid was so fed up with his parents that he couldn’t stand it, he could march over his uncle’s for a while. And this is no longer possible. Each family is locked into its little box. The neighbors aren’t relatives. There aren’t other houses where people can go and be cared for.
–Vonnegut interview extract, Todd F. Davis (January 2008). Kurt Vonnegut’s Crusade; Or, How a Postmodern Harlequin Preached a New Kind of Humanism. SUNY Press. pp. 95–97. ISBN 978-0-7914-6676-6. Retrieved 13 July 2011
Mikes’ latest book, FATHERS AND DAUGHTERS, is available at amazon.com.
Mike’s Amazon page:
So, you don’t want to take your kids to have their vaccinations ’cause it isn’t in the Bible. That’s all right, there’s a lot of other useless items that are also NOT in the ‘Good Book.’ This should in no way be considered a comprehensive list; nonetheless here a few lacks I’d love to point out:
-Literacy, so you’ll actually know what’s in the f—kin’ book
-A uniform spelling system where we all agree on verb forms, spelling and grammar
-GUNS; that should please the NRA & all you supporters of the Second Amendment
-aspirin for when your kids get on your last nerve
-fresh running water
-refrigeration to preserve fresh food for days to come
-the most basic understanding of sanitation
–the most basic understanding of medicine
-Tolerance of your neighbors’ religion–oh wait, we don’t have that now, either. OK then, never mind…
-yoyos [I mean the toys, not our politicians]
-the most basic respect for your women-folk
-fire hoses, fire sprinklers or fire protection of any kind
-The Law of Gravity
-Newton’s Laws of Motion
-Einstein’s General & Special Theories of Relativity
-cell phones that allow you to nag your absent-minded children at school or from any part of the country whatsoever
Christopher f—kin’ Columbus
-George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson or any one of the Founding Fathers
-The Bill of Rights
-compasses to keep your sorry ass from being lost in the wilderness for 40 years like some people we know
-The Collected Works of William Shakespeare
-chocolate & candy
-latex stretch pants
-Bras, which depending on the person, may or may not be a blessing
I’m beginning to think this book may not have all the answers to life’s questions after all….
DATELINE: ARCTIC CIRCLE (AP) A battalion of Marines has been deployed by Democratic President Nero to the North pole in search of “left-wing communist sympathizers”. This action was undertaken on the basis of an informative tip provided by the American Conglomeration of Popular Merchandising.
Under the direction of self-styled patriot General Dick Eastmoreland, the 96-1/2 Marine Battalion quickly captured a small toyshop operated by a Mr. Kris Kringle. A horde of plastic rifles, pistols and other weapons were confiscated. Sources claim that each item was tagged a legend, like “Merry Xmas Tommy.”
“The kids ask for them, I just deliver them,” explained Mr. Kringle. “All the boys seem to be into Rambo and toy Uzis nowadays.”
Countered General Eastmoreland, “This is obviously an enemy weapons depo. There are even naked dolls up here. Apparently Mr. Kringle is operating a child prostitution ring on the side. Just listen to that spine-tingling ‘ho-ho-ho!’”
“Ohh, the dolls are for the girls,” Kringle says, “Except for a few orders from San Francisco. HO HO HOI Y’know, I have to admit thig job is getting a mite dangerous. Last year a bunch of MiGs tried to shoot me down over Russia. Now it’s the dagnabbed Marines!”
A brief dispute ensued when Eastmoreland informed the elderly toymaker that he was being evicted. Mr. Kringle claimed squatter rights, then reportedly made some remarks involving ‘coal in their stockings.’
The toymaker was put in tough with Admiral Billy Chickenhawk, second-in-command of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Mr. Kringle is reported by reliable eyewitnesses ae saying, “I understand your position, my dear fellow. Now GET OUT!”
The Marines were hastily withdrawn with Mr. Kringle’s promise of leniency and “no coal this time around.”
In an unrelated development, a team of Greenpeace scientists in winter gear were discovered roaming the beach at Pago Pago. Among their belongings were several crates marked ‘Reindeer Feed’.
Details at eleven.