Murphy had been adjuring me incessantly to pen this commentary.
Ab initio, I was unhorsed by his impertinence, this suggested
cerebral deracination. “Isn’t your audience the
American booboisie? Your tabloidism a rather zootrophic enterprise?”
I queried him. “Is not The BEAST merely a form of intellectual
dulosis?” I asked with arch incredulity. (I’m sure
you’re laughing as hard I was.)
“Uh, I don’t…think so…” he replied.
My thick nullifidian rime unthawed, I simply glared at him.
“I have enough trouble with my computer’s benighted,
purblind spellchecker,” I told him. “It’s
a murrain upon modern man. A pox on Gates’ head!”
I screamed, the imprecation iterating loudly throughout my commodious
I avouch, though, erelong the proposed declivity intrigued
me. Write for the hoi polloi? My cogitations and ratiocinations
became febrile. Then again, I’m no thaumaturge! And this
was an Augean, ultrafidian feat. I would have to become an abecedarian,
a tyro of my own language all over again, reborn ab ovo. But
funny side up? That was the question…
The very thought of breaching the tenebrous gloom—the
dank, stygian depths of ignorance—gave me a frisson. I
felt like one of Lovecraft’s demoniac explorers: pursuing
his eldritch quarry only to discover, upon breaching its chthonic
lair, that he was the prey all along. Worse yet, we weren’t
talking about supernal beings, a thrilling foray into xenology.
No, this was an anabasis into the empty head of the American
troll: a decidedly terrene auntter. A valetudinary shudder came
over me. What if the BEAST readership’s philistine cachexy
were, in fact, loimic? What ullage of intellective ichor would
I hemorrhage by this sanguisugent confederation? My weasand
“I’m no joculator,” I cautioned Murphy. “I
don’t go in for vaudevillian battology, inane prolixity,
elocutionary gimcracks. Nor will I abase myself in the fetor
of fundamental fetishism; koine of the keister; the cheeky succedaneum
for high comedy in these topsy-turvy times,” I declaimed
with a roguish rictus. “An arrant nostrum, don’t
“Sure,” Murphy ventured, almost interrogatively.
“The coxcomb is not my strong suit,” I said, chuckling.
He nodded dimly. “I’m no macrologist, of course,”
I elaborated, sensing his unease. He proffered another shallow
Needless to say, dubiety abided. I told Murphy I was utterly
nescient of the demotic “form”: the patois of the
American prosimian, if you will. I refused to adulterate my
mandarin prose with proletariat shibboleths.
“I’ve heard about Uthman,” I hissed, referring
to the redoubtable BEAST editor. Many a quidnunc related to
me that Uthman’s procacicity had invited considerable
calumny, and more than casual threats against his dentition.
“I know all about his editorial proclivities: his tonsorial
excesses, his excision mania.
“My poesy is a saliferous farrago, albeit with nary a
soupcon of compromise,” I quipped, cacchinating indulgently,
overcome at last by the concatenation of recherche japes. “I
will brook no redactions! I’ll launch a stet offensive!”
I railed, subderisorious.
“Right,” Murphy concurred faintly.
“You’re fastidiously laconic,” I observed.
“Look,” he fired back tetchily, “How long
do you think it’s going to take to put a piece together?
We’re on a deadline.”
“Don’t be so hasty, young jehu,” I counseled.
“A daedal problem such as this requires deep intellection.
Besides, what other recourse have you? You’re holding
a yarborough, my friend.”
I won’t vouchsafe a transcript of the billingsgate—the
irreligious scurrility—that poured forth from this scapegrace’s
putrid maw. Suffice it to say his ululations were of the foulest
sort, redounding exclusively to his own traducement: hoist on
his own mephitic petard. (He osculates his mother with those
labras?!) The odoriferous, excretory miasma proved a puissant
excantation. I was jolted, as if from an oneiric terror.
I wonder now what I could have been thinking.
Well, it’s your loss, dear analphabetic reader. You won’t
be privy to any more of my sesquipedalian bons mots, my hitherto
irrepressible eleemosynary pedagogy. A more lachrymose state
of affairs, I cannot easily recall. I’m comforted only
by the thought you haven’t understood a word of this.
Rejoice! Your ignorance is bliss.