Saturday, May 24, 2008

A little meta-fiction

I thought I'd write up a story and put it in a bottle, and then maybe throw it in the ocean... or Lake Ontario... or maybe just a puddle somewhere. I hadn't gotten too far with the plot up to then. All I had was, 'story in a bottle.'

And I thought, 'Well, seeing as how I don't have a story yet I might as well get a bottle... of Jack Daniels.' Then being left in the predicament whereby I had a full bottle when what I needed was an empty one I did the only reasonable thing and got ossified, as any self-respecting artist would, until I found myself babbling away to the walls as though they were sentient beings.

Anyways... I almost had my empty bottle and was about to start in on the story to put inside when I started to get hungry. I figured that I'd best get something into my stomach to soak up all the booze. I thought about going to the corner store until I realized that I'd spent all my cash on the bottle I'd almost drained. I stumbled over to the kitchen to see what I could find in the way of food there... opened the fridge to find plenty of condiments but no food. 'Drat,' I thought, 'The curse of the single man!'

I got a spoon and had a few scoops of mayonnaise... then I had some mustard and some ranch. My insides started to turn and curdle. I checked in the freezer and found some hot dogs in an open package. I would have microwaved them if I owned a microwave, but as I didn't I just bit into one of them. It was like eating a Popsicle, except it didn't taste like sugar and fruit... it was more like a meatsicle... a crunchy crystalline bland substance mixing with Jack and mayo and mustard. 'The hell with this,' I thought.

I went back to my room and sat at my desk. In my drunken stupor I'd taken half of the uneaten sausage with me. I poked it into the empty bottle. 'Now there's a story for someone to try and figure out. If that washed up on your shore you wouldn't have the first clue how it'd all happened... how it came to be like that. But that's the beauty of a story... that sometimes it's the not knowing that makes for the twist in the tale... makes the imagination work.'

I thought about what it is to be a storyteller... thought how you can't trust people to tell their own tales and how everyone gives you a necessary fiction... like a defense mechanism against the unflattering things that we do and the way that we want others to see us instead of as we truly are. I thought about telling a story where fact was less important than fiction and then I wrote these lines... in the hopes that you'd know better than to believe a word I said.

7 comments:

sukipoet said...

I rather like the idea of sending a partially eaten hot dog off in a bottle. So what are your thoughts on the guy, whose name I forget, who wrote a supposed memoir that Oprah revealed as fiction. Where is the line between fact and fiction. Unless one is a newspaper reporter, who must be right on the facts as he sees them, all other writers seem to create a meld.

Lynn said...

I'm so glad I am not to "believe a word you said", as your image of drinking that bottle of Jack Daniels just brought up too many memories, sad memories of learning yesterday that a dear friend of ours died of his years of alcoholism finally catching up to him. (at age 61) A terrible loss, wasted life of a brilliant man, musician, friend.
Otherwise, you story was "cute"...
no, I am sorry, I am too deep into my real feelings to ...I shouldn't even try to critique just now, forgive me. You are a good writer and deserve better, but thank you for letting me spout off here in this sad time of this moment.

Fern said...

ah the fiction/reality tango...my favorite dance...indeed

Forever Young said...

ha ha, at my son's wedding in december in australia, we all wrote a message and i put them in a bottle and threw it into the sea....hope someone found it and had fun reading them!

Cestandrea said...

:) thanks for this story, I'm smiling, cause I see this saussage bottle washing up at a shore where some picks it up, eager to get the message out and then he/she has to ponder the hotdog and then will write another story, completely different,
what a lovely sunday tale, thanks you funny grasshopper
love
Andrea
ps my blog cestandrea has been temporarily banned by google blogger as a spamblog, the ghosts know why, meanwhile I'm posting on Miss doodle's blog, until they checked and found that my blog is a harmless one....or is it?
PS

human being said...

...

human being said...

crows have got a problem with their eyes... or rather their minds:
they see no opposites in the world... all their coins have got one side...
fact? fiction?... they've got just 'faction'

when people tell their tales or even their lies, they're telling... revealing the truth...

brilliant piece of faction...
;)