& Recently . . .


by Nick Jezarian

“Why’d ya do it?” The detective knew what he was doing. His questions were blunt and straight-forward and, frankly, much too open-ended for a cop with his pedigree. His line of questioning was awful, to the point he left me…

I’m Sorry, What?

by Geoff Wolinetz

I’m sorry, what was that you said? I couldn’t quite hear you. I’ve got a leprechaun in my ear. A leprechaun. Yeah, I don’t know. He’s in there though, and he loves to talk. Something about stealing his pot of…

Dear Starbucks

by Josh Abraham

Dear Secretary of Transportation

by Geoff Wolinetz

Secretary of Transportation Norman Y. Minetta 400 Seventh St. SW Washington, D.C. 20590 Dear Secretary Minetta, I’ve been meaning to write you a letter for so long. It’s really an Honor to correspond with you at all. You are the…

Polish Fact

Machine building, iron and steel, coal mining, chemicals, shipbuilding, food processing, glass, beverages, textiles.

Learn a Foreign Tongue!

Learn Portuguese
Não é tevê, ele é HBO.
It's not TV, it's HBO.

Y.P.aRt Gallery

Syndicate! RSD | RSS I | RSS II | Atøm
Large Print | Spanish Bea! Add http://yankeepotroast.org to your Kinja digest Creative Commons License
This journal is licensed under a Creative Commons License and powered by Movable Typo 3.15.
© MMV, Y.P.R. & Co.
Wednesday, March 12, 2003   |    Fiction

Sticky Situation

by Josh Abraham

Why is Krazy Glue dangerous, you ask?

Well, as you can plainly see, I have a long-tailed South African scorpion stuck to the palm of my left hand. He hasn’t stung me yet, but he will, he will, just wait. Look—there he goes, twitching and wriggling … I’m sure he’s no happier being stuck to me than I am being stuck to him. Of course, he has the upper hand, so to speak, what with the venomous sting and all. Why would I pick up a scorpion with my bare hand, you ask? A bare hand glopped in Krazy Glue, yet? Well, as you can clearly see, I had no choice: he was crawling among the wires and pinching his pincers … any second he could have cut the red wire—no, no, the other red wire; yes, that’s it—and detonated the time bomb prematurely, blowing us both to smithereens. Yes, that time bomb! The one that’s Krazy Glued to the heel of my foot, and ticking down to showtime as we speak. Why is there a time bomb Krazy Glued to my foot, you ask?


Well, I obviously didn’t intend to be Krazy Glued to it. If you must know, I was simply nudging it in place with my foot, and, well, perhaps I wasn’t too neat when applying the glue to the bomb. And I can’t try to separate my foot from the bomb, by leveraged force or by the application of chemical dissolvent, because, well, as you can clearly see, there’s a long-tailed South African scorpion in my left hand, and my right hand is, unmistakably, stuck inside the mouth of an African slender-snouted crocodile. Yes, of course it’s held there by the Krazy Glue—you don’t think I’d intentionally keep my hand in a croc’s mouth while I’m stuck to a ticking time bomb and an angry scorpion, do you?

Yes, I can tell the difference between a crocodile and an alligator, thank you, smartass. For one thing, gators have rounded snouts while crocs’ snouts are pointed. Also, adult male crocodiles grow to over 19 feet in length, while alligators rarely hit 14. Yes, yes, there are plenty of other differences—gators hibernate in the winter, crocs do not; also, crocs are tropical, saltwater beasts, while gators are found in freshwater; furthermore, gators are notably less aggressive than crocodiles. But, clearly, I do not have the time to elaborate on the vast biological differences between the two creatures, as I am currently stuck in one, and, also, to a scorpion, while a time bomb tick-tick-ticks its way ever closer to zero.

What do you mean, ‘What was I doing with my arm in a crocodile’s mouth to begin with?’ I dropped my pliers in there, and I had to get them back to deactivate the bomb. No, no, not deactivate permanently! That’s the whole point of what I’m trying, desperately, to accomplish here! I just wanted to deactivate it until I could remove myself from it, and then reactivate it so it would blow up while I’m not glued to it. That’s why I needed the pliers. No, no, not those pliers Krazy Glued to my thigh—I could reach those, if I weren’t stuck to a scorpion and inside a crocodile. But I don’t need those pliers. I need needlenose pliers for the bomb, and those are what I dropped inside the crocodile’s mouth. Well, yes, I dropped them—it’s very, very difficult to operate pliers while one hand is stuck to a scorpion, but how could I have known they would drop inside a crocodile’s mouth? Are you not following me? This is all very plain and simple. Look: I was sloppy with the glue when fastening the time bomb to the vault, and because of my negligence, my foot became affixed to it. And I picked up the scorpion because otherwise the thing might have set off the bomb before I freed myself. And I only stuck my arm in the alliga—

Crocodile! You see, you’re confusing me now! Really, I’m rattled enough as is without your endless questions. O.K.: I only stuck my arm in the crocodile’s mouth to retrieve my pliers so I could turn off the bomb. And now, yes, I am stuck to all three: crocodile, scorpion, tick-tocking time bomb. Well, yes, technically, I’m stuck to my pliers too, but those aren’t very threatening, so I dismissed them without thought.

What? Hell, I don’t know why Ted Turner guards his vault with crocodiles and scorpions, but if you could find a pair of needlenose pliers around, I’d be incredibly grateful. Please hurry.

Josh Abraham was born in Algeria in 1913. He spent his early years in North Africa, working various jobs—in the weather bureau, in an automobile-accessory firm, in a shipping company—to help pay for his courses at the University of Algiers. As a young journalist, his report on the unhappy state of Muslims in the Kabylie region aroused the Algerian government to action and brought him public notice. From 1935 to 1938 he ran the Théâtre de l'Equipe, a theatrical company that produced plays by Malraux, Gide, Synge, and Dostoevski. During World War II he was one of the leading writers of the French Resistance and editor of Combat, then an important underground newspaper. Abraham's fiction, his philosophical essays, and his plays have assured his preëminent position in modern French letters. In 1957 Abraham was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. His sudden death on January 4, 1960, cut short the career of one of the most important literary figures of the Western world when he was at the very summit of his powers. No, wait. That was Albert Camus.