|“Um…well…I guess I should start with my name: Alan Smithee, that’s with two “e’s” if you please. I have been addicted to suicide since my first time when I was 16. It was simple, just a hanging, but it has been slowly escalating to the point that I can’t walk down an aisle at a hardware store without thinking how the tools can be used for suicide. I’ve done em’ all: table saws, hand grenades, electric toothbrushes, bass strings. I even did it once with a turkey baster and a lethal dose of stool softener. I guess that is about it…um…thanks.”
He sat down to the music of over a dozen unenthusiastic clapping hands, which was quickly stifled within an impatient few seconds. The conductor of the group gave a consenting nod to the now seated man and then pointed to the man next to him who promptly stood up.
“Well, I guess my story isn’t much different. I started when I was-” he said before being interrupted.
“What is your name” the conductor asked.
“Do I have to say?”
“Not if you don’t want to.”
“Is it alright if I just say Henry?”
“That will be fine.”
“Well, as I was saying” he said with an increasingly noticeable British accent “I was about 15 when I started. It seemed like a harmless enough thing, but then it just grew more and more uncontrollable. I was influenced by the movies, and would try and mimic scenes. I jumped off a building wearing the wings from the movie “Brazil.” Ironically I died before hitting the ground when a low flying bird with a sharp beak hit me. I also dressed in a superman cape and tried to stop a train. They found my body half a mile away from the tracks.”
“I had something similar” one of the seated men interrupted.
“Let Henry finish please” said the conductor.
“No, it’s alright” Henry replied shyly “I was finished anyway.”
“Ok, go ahead then mister…”
“Johnny Elk, sir” the man said as he stood up. “I tried jamming myself down a wood-chipper. I got up to my thighs when I went into shock and my weight pushed me down a few more inches until I got to my waist. I also rigged a ventriloquist doll to stab me in the back. Scared the crap out of my kids, but my wife loved it. She later married the ventriloquist doll. That’s about it.”
“Thank you John” the conductor said now looking at the man next to John. He had a paper bag over his head with the word “disowned” written on it. “Are you going to talk today Henry?”
The brown paper bag shook from side to side as the eyes near the holes in the bag hid into the bag.
“Well, I think that will do for today. Refreshments are on the table. Feel free to talk with your brothers in addiction.”
Everyone, even Henry, got up and drank the punch that was laid out as they talked. One man began to say to another “hey, we’re all going to commit group suicide after this, want to join in?” when he started to black out and drop to the ground. Everyone soon followed, trying to crawl away until all were still, carpeting the ground in dead men; all except for the conductor who smiled, removed his name tag, and went over to the trash can and dropped it into the can, along with a now empty bottle of homemade poison. He then went to a door which connected to an adjacent room which was filled with about twelve people.
“Sorry about that” the conductor said “I had to use the bathroom.”
“That’s alright” the new conductor in the room said “the intermission just ended. Welcome back, everyone, to the second session of ‘Mass Murders Anonymous.’”
© Copyright 2010 Alan Smithee (UN: alan_smithee at Writing.Com).
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