With only two weeks to sell a contract I couldn’t use, I did the only thing that came naturally: wrote about flying groundhogs and lint. I quote the post on Craigslist here:
“(Basic info and Google Street View link below thrilling, Hugo Award winning narrative)
“How far d’ya think it’ll fly?” asked Larry. Rigoberto furrowed his brow in thought and grunted as he hefted the obese rodent. “Oh, I dunno. I’d say fifeen, twenny feet, mebbe,” said Rigoberto dubiously. Twelve was the furthest he’d ever managed. Their plan to determine how much wood a woodchuck would chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood had shuddered to a halt when it quickly became apparent no self-respecting rodent would ever be found lobbing lumber in daylight, nor could one be persuaded, coerced or bribed to do so. In their frustration, the two dimwitted pals had decided to answer a simpler, more satisfying question: How far could a woodchuck BE chucked if it were simply tied to wood?
Rigoberto and Larry stood on the edge of the busy street, their groundhog lovingly affixed to a moldy 2’x4″ with strips of a tattered, pink T-shirt. Rigoberto looked slyly at Larry. “Hey Larry,” he began.
“Betcha you can’t throw this here woodchuck onto yonder campus.”
Larry looked appraisingly at the edge of BYU campus, thirty feet from the edge of Rigoberto’s lawn. “Wot’s at stake?”
“Well…” Rigoberto began, “say if ya make it, I’ll give ya, say, two hundred bucks.”
Larry thought for a moment. “And saying I don’t chuck this here varmint all that way?” “Then you gives them $100 to me,” said Rigoberto swarthily, itching his scruffy chin. “Let’s raise it. Make it $135.”
“Cocky, is we?” Rigoberto elbowed Larry knowingly, causing him to almost drop the groundhog squirming under his arm. “But seein’ as $135’s th’ exact entrance fee to become part of th’ Awesome Possum Tossin’ Posse team this summer, y’ got yerself a deal.”
Larry wrapped a couple more fabric strips around the groundhog, which had nearly gnawed itself loose. Wasting no more time, Larry stepped up to the edge of the sidewalk. Rigoberto watched, unconcerned. Larry smiled, and then began yelling. Raw energy burst from his person. As Larry’s hair turned a bleach blond as a ferocious wind screamed out of nowhere Rigoberto knew something had gone horribly wrong… but couldn’t quite place a finger on what had changed. A passing jogger yelled over the gathering storm. “Looks like his power level’s over 9000–” but further wisdom was cut short as he was blown bodily from sight. Rigoberto frowned in contemplation as Larry raised the woodchuck overhead. “KAMEEEEEHAAMMMEEEEHAAAAAAAAA!” The groundhog sailed from Larry’s suddenly Super Saiyan hands across 800 N, easily clearing it and the looming hill behind it. As suddenly as it began, Larry’s glowing being and chiseled musculature faded back to his tattered jeans and potbellied self.
Rigoberto grunted, a glazed-donut stare of defeat creeping over his brown eyes.”See, Larry…I don’ have thems $135.”
Larry picked a piece of lint absentmindedly from his prodigious navel, then another. “Gee, Rigoberto. I seen this stuff corrode steel. It’d be a shame if this here lint ended up somewhere it warn’t wanted…” He began to fiddle with the gas valve to Larry’s prize four-wheeler.
Rigoberto’s eyes widened. “Git yer grubby hands off Sheila! I’ll get ya the money in a couple o’ days.”
“Like heck you will,” said Larry. “Ya got three weeks to get the money to me. After that, yer octane’s gonna be half lint, half funk.” Rigoberto grimaced and looked from Sheila to his beautiful, yellow house. He knew where his heart lay. He’d need to sell it to keep Sheila safe. Yessir, the house would have to go.
THE END? In order to help Rigoberto recoup his financial losses to the villainous, inhumanly strong and smelly Larry I am selling my summer contract at my Monticello-owned house.
(then I said some boring contract things, including:)
No, Larry doesn’t live nearby. Your four-wheeler is safe from his pernicious lint.
Literally so close to BYU campus you could chuck a woodchuck there from your front porch, Super Saiyan or no. 3 minute walk to the Testing Center or Comms building, five minutes from the Chemistry and brand-new Life Science building.”
I sold my contract in two days.
(Gracias, Don Gregorio)