Thursday, May 10, 2007
I found these at Mcsweeneys.net, please enjoy the letters and unrelated posters
AN OPEN LETTER
TO KEITH RICHARDS'
December 10, 2004
Dear Keith Richards' Immune System,
Hey! How are you? I know you're busy sustaining four packs a day of Gitanes and overcoming the long-term effects of black-tar heroin, but here's the thing: I need your help.
I have an illness, CFIDS, that suppresses my immune system, and I don't like it. I get fevers that last a month and I'm allergic to 72 foods. (Food, the thing that sustains life, frequently makes me sick.) But I'm not writing on my behalf. No, what keeps me up at night is that AIDS is enveloping Africa, Asia, and Russia with horrifying speed. Tens of millions of individuals—people with families and middle names and private jokes and birthdays—are dying, and all science has been able to do is slow things down a bit.
Here's where you come in. Out of the 6.1 billion human immune systems on the planet, you're clearly the strongest. You've triumphed over the aforementioned tobacco and opiates, and over Mick's preening vocals on "Hot Stuff." What other immune system can claim the same?
On behalf of the immuno-compromised populace, I'm asking that you allow epidemiologists to study your molecular activity before it's too late. Had researchers pounced while Charles Bukowski and William Burroughs were alive, millions could have been saved and I might eat eggs without throwing up.
To paraphrase Princess Leia: Help us, Keith Richards' Immune System. You're our only hope.
Thanks and much continued success,
AN OPEN LETTER TO
MY CATS, WHO ARE JEALOUS
OF MY NEW BABY DAUGHTER AND
ARE ACTING OUT NOW THAT SHE
RECEIVES ALL THE ATTENTION.
September 22, 2006
I'm on to you. I see the way you look at us. Those devious cat eyes glaring at us from under the rocker during a 2 a.m. feeding. You don't think I see you, but I do. You see, I've been watching you, too. I am aware of what you are up to, you maniacal bitches. Go ahead, chew on the newly purchased stuffed lamb with a bell inside of it that we bought to make her giggle. Rip it to shreds. I've got plenty of money and there is a Pottery Barn for Kids right down the street from our house. And if you are attempting to mark your territory with the "wet spots" that I find in her nursery, you better step up your game. It takes a lot more than damp carpet to raise my ire. The vomiting? What the hell is that all about? Just because she can do it without getting sprayed with the squirt bottle and chased down the stairs, you think that gives you the right, too? Your constant pleas for attention are duly noted. I can deal with these things, and I can deal with your perching atop our headboard while we sleep, making your low, gutteral cries, begging for attention, yet at the same time figuring out ways to disfigure my face with your rear claws and sharp teeth. I can deal with that. (Although, I have to admit, you're starting to freak me out.) But where I draw the line is with what you did yesterday. Your weaving around my feet while I carry her is not just unappreciated—it is dangerous. (Note to self: Never carry baby down the stairs with the cats around. They'll eventually figure out that that's where we're most vulnerable.) This child is helpless and, though your jealousy runs deep, your deliberate attempts to "take her out" will not be tolerated. I extend my hand to you in truce. If you promise to change your ways, I promise to teach her to not chase you and grab your tails when she is mobile enough to do so. I understand your feelings of having to play second fiddle, and for that I'm sorry. Truce?
AN OPEN LETTER
TO THE AMAZON PARROT
I HAVE BEEN SUPPORTING FOR
OVER 15 YEARS WHO STILL
TRIES TO BITE ME FOR NO
May 19, 2006
Dear Amazon Parrot I Have Been Supporting for Over 15 Years Who Still Tries to Bite Me for No Apparent Reason,
I am writing because I have a surprise for you. Ever since you've been living with me (rent-free, I might add), you have led me to believe you can't understand a single word I say. Even a simple command like "Please stop pecking at my eyes" goes unheeded. You've also seemed completely unable to imitate human speech. For an embarrassing number of years, I carefully repeated the same simple words and phrases, always hoping that someday you might repeat them back to me. One morning I would be preparing your usual gigantic breakfast assortment of tropical fruits, whole-grain toast points, and pricey organic cereals, when a wee voice would issue from your little feathered head and you would finally say to me, "You're such a pretty bird! I love you, pretty bird!" That was my dream.
Instead, over a decade later, you have apparently learned only three vocalizations: the cackling laugh of an evil hag (a sarcastic parody of my own innocent laughter?); a tuneless steam-whistle sound rising in pitch like an engine about to explode; and your favorite, the sudden, high-decibel bloodcurdling scream.
Well, guess what? Recent scientific research has finally exposed your perfidious avian secret: Several parrots have been proven to understand and speak perfect English. As a result, we now know that your species has self-awareness, awareness of the feelings of others, and a heretofore unimagined intelligence. Unimagined by me, anyway, since you never indicated by word (ha-ha!) or deed that you possessed anything more than the simple self-seeking cognition of a lower animal, like, say, a cat. I actually felt sorry for you and your tiny bird brain.
But now I know the truth, Amazon Parrot I Have Been Supporting for Over 15 Years Who Still Tries to Bite Me for No Apparent Reason. You have lived a life of deception and mockery at my expense. And I do mean "at my expense." You are a high-maintenance money pit with feathers. Even though I raised you from a baby, and protected you from all harm, you still won't let me touch your precious little feet and razor-sharp beak without attempting to kill me. As a result, I am forced to pay for a visit to the bird vet every time you need a trim. Yes, only a highly paid professional can safely handle your temper tantrums, your rabid biting, and your needlelike claws aimed at her face.
And what about the overpriced toys I have lavished upon you, only to see you cringe and act as if I'd left a slavering monster in your cage whenever I present you with the latest carefully designed construction guaranteed to "keep your bird happy and intellectually stimulated"? The cleverly designed spiral exercise ladder I bought for you two weeks ago, which you attacked and demolished in a matter of minutes, cost me over $60. I'm not made of money, you know. Oh, that's right—you do know, because you have been eavesdropping on every conversation I've ever had within your hearing, no doubt filing away any information that could be used to manipulate me in the future.
However, O Exalted One, you apparently can't be bothered to actually carry on a conversation with me, even though it is now very clear that you have the ability. Why not? Am I not interesting enough for you, Your Highness? Do you sneer at my lowly human intelligence? Or perhaps you have made a secret rule for yourself that it is beneath your majestic dignity to speak to your groveling servant.
Now that I think of it, I'm actually paying for the "privilege" of serving you. My life now revolves around you and your many needs, all because I thought you were cute and helpless and unable to fend for yourself in this complex world. But it isn't complex for you, is it? You simply demand, and it is done for you. Your wordless scream has been carefully calculated to waver around the exact eardrum-shattering pitch that will drive me into frenzied attempts to placate you so that the awful noise will stop. And, all these years, you could have simply asked me politely for whatever you required.
But no, you kept your cognitive and language abilities to yourself, forcing me to guess frantically at what you wanted, and shrieked like a nuclear warning siren whenever I couldn't somehow psychically pick up on the exact nature of your request. It is now obvious that you are quite the little intellectual, and that your species isn't afraid to use our human technology for your own ends. Now that I have read about your fellow parrots' ability to operate a computer so it will show only the pictures they prefer (pictures of themselves, of course), I think I have figured out just how my new laptop got infected with a mysterious virus that destroyed the hard drive.
Well, the next time you bite into me for no apparent reason, your evil charade will come to an end. I will feel free to demand that you apologize immediately in grammatical, clearly enunciated English. If no such apology is forthcoming, you will find yourself tossed out on the street. Where the hawks and eagles live. Just try playing dumb with them, Amazon Parrot I Have Been Supporting for Over 15 Years Who Still Tries to Bite Me for No Apparent Reason. I'll bet those raptors are just as smart as you.
AN OPEN LETTER
TO JAMES RANDI
REGARDING HIS "ONE MILLION
July 10, 2006
Dear James Randi,
I am writing to you in regard to your offer of $1 million to anyone who can demonstrate, under proper conditions of scientific trial, paranormal abilities. I deeply admire your policy of holding those who claim to possess supernatural powers to the rigorous standards of scientific inquiry and rational thought by working with these claimants to develop a preliminary, and then a formal, test of those abilities.
The warning, posted so ominously (and, dare I say, smugly) on your website, that "no one has ever passed the preliminary tests" only deepens my conviction to be the first.
Delightfully, I have not only a love for the scientific method but also a demonstrable paranormal skill! I have the ability to control men's minds with my vagina.
To test the claim that I can control men's minds with my vagina, I propose the following experiment:
A statistically significant even number of volunteers will be recruited to participate in the test. Volunteers should be male, heterosexual, and unknown to me, and should have at least $5 on their person. Each volunteer will be assigned to a group: "vagina" or "no vagina."
In every trial, the volunteer will be seated within a short walking distance of a hamburger stand. Volunteers in the "vagina" group will also be seated within a short walking distance of my vagina. Volunteers in the "no vagina" group will have a leaden wall placed between them and my vagina. To ensure that the "no vagina" group is not motivated by even the suggestion of my vagina, I will not be seen by them, and my voice will be conveyed only through a voice-altering device that masks my gender.
For each trial, I will ask the volunteer if he will buy me a hamburger.
I predict that volunteers in visual proximity of my vagina will be at least 50 percent more likely to comply than those separated from my vagina by a leaden barrier.
I think you will agree that mind control of any kind is certainly a paranormal phenomenon, and that this proposal represents a fair test of my ability to control men's minds with my vagina.
As anecdotal evidence—which I am aware is not sufficient for your challenge but seems apropos in an introductory note such as this—I have previously obtained a number of hamburgers in this manner.
P.S. With fries!
AN OPEN LETTER
TO THE GYM SHORTS
THAT ARE NOT IN
MY GYM BAG.
November 3, 2004
Dear Gym Shorts That Are Not In My Gym Bag,
I think we need to talk, Gym Shorts That Are Not In My Gym Bag. This has to stop happening. We've had this problem a couple of times before and, seriously, I thought things would improve. I thought you could change. Do you know how it makes me feel when I get into the locker room, carefully remove and hang up my business-casual attire, and attempt to change into you, only to find you missing? Don't you know how I wonder where you are? How this could have happened? Do you think I can't hear the snickers as I walk, dejected, out past the other people in the locker room? Well, I can. And it hurts.
Oh, don't try to turn this around on me. Forgetful!? That's rich. I'm the one making all the effort here. Everyone else made it into the bag; the socks were there, Wake Forest Men's Track T-shirt showed up, even the change of underwear, the usual culprit, was right there in the bag. But where were you when I needed you? Sitting on the bed, right where I left you this morning. You hadn't even moved!
You know, when I bought you, you were full of promise. You entered my life at a time when things were turning around. You represented hope, the promise of a new day, as well as stylish performance. But the breathability of your fabric belied your commitment. We were supposed to be a team. And a team is only as strong as its weakest member. That weakest member is you, my friend.
The promise of that day, three weeks ago, at Sports Authority, seemed like forever ago as I stood there on the cold tile in my black work socks and boxer briefs. Gym Shorts That Are Not In My Gym Bag, I'm disappointed. I thought we had something. I guess I was wrong.