View Full Version : The Meaning of Life.

March 15th, 2005, 05:43 PM
This will be part of a continuing series, should I decide to continue it. As it is, it will probably be my <2000 words entry to the Contest. Not my greatest work ever, but it's amusing, and somewhat deep, when subjected to serious literary criticism. But mostly amusing. :)

Fritz was sitting in his living room, pondering life. He stared at the wall for a few minutes. He was wondering about the meaning of life, but not too seriously. He sat is smallish, sunbathed room. The window was open, and the whole feel of the place made one feel liazy. As he was thinking along, he stumbled across a philisophical idea so revolutionary, it would have blown the acedemic world away. However, the wall again caught his attention, and he continued to stare at it.

Fritz was somewhat annoyed. Yet again, he found himself inexplicibly the target of massive amounts of German junk mail. Having his ancestral roots in England, he was rather annoyed. His parents, however, liked Germany, and wished to have come from it. Hence, they decided to be German vicariously, throught heir son. Living in upstate New York did little to remedy the situation.

The junk mail accumulated, nonetheless. Fritz petulently shook his fist at fate. Unbeknownst to him, Fate Francis, a Network Administrator at the Rolindal Insurence Company, NY, felt a stange drop in her feeiling of self worth. Through a simple, yet hidden course of events, her self-esteem dropped, and she commited suicide, jumping out her office window. There is a valuable lesson to be learned from this, but Fritz did not learn it, having no idea it existed.

He threw away most of it, after carefully searching it for the one piece he was waiting for. Inevitebly, it did not come. Annoyed, he threw the rest away. He was still annoyed, as the piece he was waiting for was comformation of his energy bill. Despite having already payed for this month twice, the energy company refused to provide him service. When he complained, they sent him a theoretical physicist who argued, quite convincingly, that he had in fact payed for the parallel electric bill of a paralell Fritz, in a perpendicular universe. On the way out, the theoretical physicist pointed out how Fritz's cat was a dog, that he'd dropped his pocket, and that the laws of gravity were myths. He then walked out the door with a smile and flew off into the night.

Despite this, however, he still lacked power. He sighed, turned off the TV, and watched a movie. It was quite annoying, all in all.

As he watched the movie, he pondered life. He also pondered death, but decided that the meaning of death was irrelevant.

As he pondered, he considered what he had accomplished in life. He felt decent about himself, but he lacked purpose.

"I feel decent," he thought to himself "but I lack purpose."

Having lived comfortably for several years as an assistant cheif under-supervisor to the department of acronyms at OBGL Industries, he found himself getting bored with life. His major aspiration at the moment was to become the senior cheif under-supervisor of the DoA. Try as he and his psychiatrist might, he coud not convince himself that he had a purpose in life. He'd struggled with this problem before.

He'd tried finding religion, but all the other members of his church died in a big fiasco involving Kool-ade. He was buisy pretending to be sick to avoid going the service, and apparently missed out.

He considered asking the passing hobo. Then he considered how he could consider asking a passing hobo, when he was sitting in his living room, sorting German mail.

"Excuse me sir, but I'm trying to sort mail, what are you doing passing around in my house?" He asked, trying to stay calm, as his psychiatrist had advised in such situations.
"What's it to you?" replied the hobo.
"What's it to me?! This is my house!" Exclaimed Fritz, getting only slightly angery, as his psychiatrist admitted was sometimes needed.
"I disagree."
"Yo- Bwa- Huh?!" replied Fritz in the calmest outraged shout possible, as his psychiatrist had advised.
"You can't just walk into someone's house and stay there!"
"I disagree."

"Well," said Fritz, regaining his temper, and exercising his logic, "the burden of proof is on you, to prove your disagreement."
"Not so, but I will take the challenge, nonetheless." Said the suprisingly coherent, if slightly inebriated bum. "Of course, should I prove that I CAN just walk in here, then I shall"

"Of course." said Fritz confidently. He had debated with the best analytical and aruementitive minds that the OBGL acronym depeartment had to offer. He could take a hobo.

"Very well, then I shall" replied the hobo confidently.

"Bwua?" replied Fritz, almost exactly as unconfident as the hobo wasn't.

"If you admit that, should I win, I can live here, then I have won. I have proven that, under certain circumstances, I CAN just walk in here."

The minds of the OBGL acronym department shook a little in their respective heads as the power of perspective hit them.

"Well...umm..." rebutted Fritz, repeatedly. He was unsure of how this debate was going, but it looked as though it MAY have taken a downward turn.
"Exactly. Now, I would ask you, what the hell are you doing in my house?" Replied the bum.
"I live here!" Cried Fritz.
"No, I do".

"But-" Started Fritz, and stopped, as that was a far as he had planned. He expected something to come to him by the end of the silyble, but it stubbornly refused to do so.

"Well, it seems you are thicker than you would appear; and I'll be the first to say, you appear quite thick."

"Now hold on, I don't have to take this!"
"I agree!" said the Hobo, enthusiastically.
"You do?'
"Yes, you should leave immediately, befoe I call the police!"
"No need to be rude" replied the now homeless Fritz. :By the way, you woulsn't happen to know the meaning of life, would you?"
"Live long, live well; for tommorrow you may be eaten by a duck"
"Ah haaa..." said Fritz, as he backed towards the door. "How did you come to that conclusion?"
"Through personal exprience."
"Really? How many times, to date, have you been eaten by ducks?"
"3." Said the hobo with what appeared to Fritz to be a straight face.
"Ah haaa..." said Fritz as he backed out the door.

Walking along the crowded streets of Rochester, Fritz pondered life yet again. He had no home, but he was fine with it. He mused that it was probably a sign of inner peace; or a nervous breakdown. He mulled over this as he wandered aimlessly along the crooked sidewalks, peering down the dark alleys.

One such alley, though, suprised him, and he paused. As soon as he did, though, it was gone. He could have sworn that he'd seen a flash of light there. He continued on, wondering more about the whole nervous breakdown concept. He pondered fate for a while, giving life a nice break. However, fate doesn't take kindly to being pondered, and decided to drop a Network Adminstrator on him.

March 16th, 2005, 10:37 AM
I sense a feeling of frustration in this piece - junk mail, network administrators, etc. Maybe the stress of working daily inspired this? If you are not stressed then it was a very good effort at role playing.

March 16th, 2005, 12:14 PM
Why thank you, I'm unusually serene these days, moreso than most points in my life. :) I have, however, a great deal of experience to draw from when I wrote this. I tried to convey the sense that the world is simply refusing to cooperate. In movies and books, time seems to slow down when the protagonist has to make a decision, or when a deadline is pressing, or when there is a lot to consider. One thing I hope to convey, if not in this piece, then in the further writing I will do in this story, is that life doesn't slow down. It keeps going by you; you have to roll with the punches, kicks, feints, knife wounds, and the occasional ray-gun burst. I was also attempting to make it somewhat amusing, so it doesn't sound whiney. Not sure if I succeeded.

March 16th, 2005, 12:16 PM
BTW, I just realized that the meaning of the last line might be ambiguous, as I never mentioned the NA's method of suicide. I've now corrected that, by mentioning it near the beginning.

March 21st, 2005, 08:54 AM
So is he on some drugs? Cuz it does seem like it. Hidden importance in this line... lol
Or is he having some weird during death experience.

Also I was wondering, does this line:
"He'd tried finding religion, but all the other members of his church died in a big fiasco involving Kool-ade. He was buisy pretending to be sick to avoid going the service, and apparently missed out." reflect, in part, your belifs on that 'issue' - or subject? Tossed in as a minor part of this man's life .

On a whole you got that sorta amusing sound, reminded me of douglas adams a little. Sorta a slightly unusual and somewhat abstracted perspecive on the situation. Makes it easier to ease into the thought (and maybe even entertains and encourages your thoughts). And doesn't really sadden or annoy.

But I don't like those wholly unexplained and weird sort of things things like how he landed on himself. Just a random perspecive switch? Lame. I think it should be explained (better; if it is supposed to be now) and plausible too. Unless you're using that lack as a device to say something about the idea that frames the story, or the guy's perspecive.

In any event it was a pretty entertaining story that I don't quite get. I know what happened but it doesn't fit together very well in a bigger picture for me. You might describe it as a little too jumpy (or maybe not close enough to what I think to be as jumpy as it might actually be).