A short story of American Absurdism(ity). Don't be intimidated by the following table of contents: this thing is under 1,000 words.
Chapter 1: What's With This Guy?
Chapter 2: Suck
Chapter 3: Emptiness
Chapter 4: Set Fire To Your Ships and Never Return Home
What’s With This Guy?
Beaux stood in line at a BBQ joint called Peter Seller’s Barbeque.
Everyone was mask-less and no one was following 6-foot-social-distancing protocol. These scumbags!
Anyway, there was one man at the front, in fact, who was wearing a mask.
The fat, bald man at the counter in red suspenders over a blue shirt told him to take his mask off. He took it off but there was another mask underneath.
The man at the counter shook his head. ‘Okay, don’t try to be cute, now come on take the mask off.’
He took the second mask off and there was a third underneath.
Beaux watched this in dismay, he started to get nervous. He felt like he’d seen this in a dream.
The man took off the third mask and there was a fourth mask underneath.
Two inconspicuous screens mounted to the wall flicked on. It was surveillance. But there were green circles around some people and red circles around the others.
The man in suspenders at the front of the restaurant said, ‘Okay everyone, you know what to do.’
The people who corresponded with the green circles searched for themselves on the screen, found the people that corresponded to the red circles, and proceeded to rip their sleeves up.
Men and women in hazmat suits entered the room with trash receptacles ready.
The green circled people found the vax-holes on the arms of the red people, leaned over, and proceeded to violently suck on the holes. Some of the vaxxed people winced, some squealed in pain, others just rolled their eyes and shook their heads.
A few of them punched the people sucking on their arms. That’s when fights broke out and everyone started shoving one another.
Some were spitting the injections they had sucked out into the trash receptacles. One man who appeared to have accidentally swallowed it grew pale and began shaking.
Beaux didn’t do anything at all.
The man who’d been standing behind the man with many masks said, ‘Hey,’ and approached him with his hand out.
The man stopped ripping off his own masks, so the other man began ripping them off for him. For every one he ripped off, it appeared that there was another one right underneath it. But as you can imagine, heh heh, the space where his mouth and nose should have been seemed as though it had to be further and further back or smaller and smaller in proportion with the rest of his head because there were always more masks.
But soon enough, the mask-less man saw a string behind the masked man’s ear that didn’t look like the face mask string. He pulled on it and it appeared that the top part of his face was a mask too. But behind it was nothing at all.
The masks all layered on the bottom collapsed, and soon, the body fell over with a very soft thud onto the ground.
All the fights stopped.
Everyone stopped what they were doing and looked at what appeared to be no more than a pile of cloth lying on the floor.
The lifeless clothing seemed to flutter and twitch a little bit a the collar of the shirt where a fake head had been, and soon, a butterfly flew out of it and into the air.
Set Fire To Your Ships and Never Return Home
The BBQ joint disengaged from the dock cement and the street and started floating out onto the bay.
Some of the people inside jumped into the water to swim for shore. Others remained inside, looking out the window, letting their steaks and brisket go cold, figuring that surely, this was all part of a wonderful evening dinner.
Beaux felt a great tightness in his chest as he thought of his mother. This was her favorite restaurant. He would also likely never see her again.
The thought of finding a wife on that ship to live out his last remaining days eating steaks and brisket before they all died of thirst, starvation or disease was not exactly something that filled him with joy.
So he went into the kitchen, crawled inside an oven and waited for someone to fire it on.