The Wrath of Tuesday
A story by Kyle Miller.
Like The Great Muffin Stories, this was the result of a game we played in 2008 we where my siblings and I chose a word, and we had to incorporate the word into stories we wrote. See if you can figure out what the word was this time.
The sky was rent apart in a torrent of shattered stars that fateful Tuesday. Tuesdays, they’re always so dull most of the time, not being far enough in the week to have much excitement, yet not as infamous as the weekend-killing Monday. However, sometimes the Universe, knowing that everyone is too distracted to even notice, takes out small weekly loans from Tuesday to answer people’s wishes of a more eventful and fun-filled weekend to escape the the doldrums of the week. It’s a sort of “enjoyment redistribution” as the Universe sees it. Just as a large soap bubble will suck up a smaller one, the weekend had been sucking up Tuesday as everyone sought to escape it. Usually an easy-going day, Tuesday finally had enough.
“I’ve had enough,” proclaimed Tuesday to the pantheon of days.
“We’re sorry you’re not as popular as any of us,” said Friday.
Added Saturday, “or as fun.”
“But it’s a loan, and loans need to be repaid,” pleaded Tuesday, “even if it is in part. I’d even be happy with a few more people heading off to the mall to see a movie.”
Monday, the Grand Arbiter of all days, being the first day of the Week, grandly arbitrated, “We cannot allow such a thing. If we let you have a little extra fun, then we’ll need to let every day have extra fun.” The other days looked to each other and nodded in approval. “Therefore, we cannot repay your loan at this time. There is nothing more to speak about. Meeting adjourned.” And the anthropomorphisms promptly puffed into large clouds of smoke.
“Hey!” you may astutely point out, “if there is a cloud of smoke left over, they must have really existed! Don’t try to pull any of that yahooliginary on me! The wool won’t so easily be pulled over my eyes!” Ah, but it will, and that is exactly what I’m now doing (and I don’t believe “yahooliginary” is actually a word). See, the days truly are constructions of our collective mind, but constructions have power. We all abide by them, talk about them in normal speech. “See you next Wednesday!” “I think it was a Thursday.” “Ewww... didn’t you make that tuna casserole a few Sundays ago?” These days are very real to us, and thus, they could, quite likely, disappear in puffs of smoke when we finish talking about them, or even when they cease to talk to each other, but we just fail to notice.
As the smoke cleared, Tuesday stood slightly bewildered and fuming (and gagging—there was a lot of smoke, and the Pantheon of the Days never bothered to update their ventilation system. When someone brought it up, they were told to “stuff it” since a “real day” isn’t bothered by a “little smoke.” For more information on this exciting subject, there is an excellent book by Stephen Hawking entitled “A Brief History of Time and Other Short Stories”).
“I’ll show them,” frowned Tuesday. “Next week will be a Tuesday they’ll never forget.” He surveyed the room, noting the circle of seven chairs, the large digital clock on the wall, ticking off the time, and the purple and gold streamers hanging off the ceiling that the set designers so pushed the Days to accept. They said it set a mystical tone for a mystical group of symbolic beings, and were meant to represent the time since both are mostly one dimensional. Whatever the reasons, Tuesday still thought them to be tacky. How were respectable leaders of time supposed to seriously plan things with that nonsense going on?
“Hmm... time is only mostly one dimensional...” mused Tuesday. With this thought, he promptly went to go play a little racquetball.
Cosmic doings are comings and goings, or at least that was the motto of one Laura Esterson of Eddleberg, New England. She had no idea what that actually meant, was supposed to mean, or where it came from (for all she knew, it could have appeared in that breakfast cereal “Cosmic Crunch” which were bits shaped like little stars, planets, and nebula. A common theme in their advertisements was that a little cliche green man would get into a rocket, fly around, find a treasure, only to be eaten amid squeals of delight by little children. Then, to keep angry parents from phoning in about this potentially disturbing ending, the advertising agency wisely resurrected the alien at the end to say a little diddly. “They’re more than good, they’re cosmic!”).
Unfortunately for her, she was going to experience the exact meaning of her pithy phrase rather shortly, in a cosmic sort of way.
It was a strangely pleasant Saturday morning. Everything was going perfectly. It was almost as if there was some strange force at work trying to justify a normally good time of the week being a superb time of the week. Whatever it was, she was pleased. It is so much better than that Tuesday... He’s such a boring character.
With that thought, the ground shook a bit. In the spirit of scientific methodology, she tested that thought again. “What was it again? It must have had to do with what a great morning it was. But there was a comparison to... to.. Oh yes, I remember. This is so much better than that boring Tuesday.”
The ground did not shake. She tried it again. This time, it seemed the ground stayed so firm that it was trying to prove it wasn’t related to her thought. Apparently these events weren’t causally related.
If only she knew that they weren’t necessarily causally related, but there instead was a topical relation. If only. Actually, at this point, there was nothing she could do.
She turned on the news to see if there were any stories yet about the recent vibrations.
“That’s odd... it’s Tuesday evening.”
With that, the morning light was extinguished.
Marvin looked up at the night sky and was unable to see anything. He couldn’t even see his hand in front of his face, but then he realized that he didn’t have one after that accident with with the potato battery he made for the ninth grade science fair. This event is too tragic to recount here. Upon his remembrance of this aspect of his life, he looked at his other arm and was relieved, there was just enough light for him to make out a dim outline. He carefully rubbed his eyes, and there was truly nothing, not a single star or source of light, save the flashlight someone was shining directly into his face.
“What? Who’s there?” called out Marvin somewhat confusedly.
“No, that’s not the right question. It seems I should ask you what you are doing, seeing as I’m the one with the flashlight.”
“That does make sense,” he agreed, “would you care to start over?”
“Yes, we need to do this correctly.” With a slight click the flashlight was put out. A second later, the lamp was again burning into the eyes of Marvin, who by now had little spots forming before his eyes.
“What are you doing out so late, dear sir?”
“Just a few minutes ago, I was taking my weekly Saturday morning stroll.”
“That seems like the thing to do on a Saturday morning.”
“Yes, it does, but the oddest thing happened, it’s evening now. Do you happen to know what time it is?”
To prevent any further confusion, Marvin is completely confused, Laura is the one holding the flashlight, and it is now Tuesday evening, and not Saturday morning as the man would rather like it to be.
“Last I checked, Tuesday evening,” Laura replied, “and I’m not yet sure what to make of it.”
“Oh, well, I think I’ll just continue my Saturday routine. It couldn’t hurt. Goodbye, I hope this all gets sorted out soon.”
He walked off into the darkness.
Without warning a taxicab appeared, perhaps going eighty miles per hour, traveling down the very street she was standing. It passed her. There’s not much to say about it anymore, and it’ll never be referenced again.
In the barren mountains separating the continents of Asia and Europe—which are, in fact, the only feature that cause people to classify these land masses as distinct—the nomadic people of the area noticed something very odd, apart from the sudden change in the date, of which they didn’t mind because of their nomadic nature.
After a long week of work, they had a diversion, a diversion of the likes they had never seem before.
“Worm! Worm! Get me a worm!” squawked Abnadi’s prized chicken.
The people watched the chicken with glee. They had only heard the legends of talking chickens. The bird hobbled around. It stopped. A child approached it.
“Here you go,” said the child, who dropped a night crawler on the ground.
The chicken pecked at it for a bit, and then retorted, “Big! Big! Too big!”
The child was prepared, however. The tribal storyteller had taught about always being prepared and to always keep a second worm. He dropped it in front of the chicken.
“Yes! Yes! Yes!” The chicken ate it and proceeded to grow. He grew and grew and grew. The people started to talk to it about problems with determinism and free will. They were divided on this issue and they needed someone (or something) to set them straight. They talked long into the night, and became enlightened. Then, they had a feast and became contented.
They had leftovers for weeks.
“Yes, it worked,” thought Tuesday to himself, “something has at long last happened on a Tuesday. Now, it is time for the Tuesday night spectacular!”
He couldn’t wait through the rest of the week, so, remembering that time is only somewhat one-dimensional, sent the universe forward in time. He did overshoot a bit into the evening, but what he was going to do was going to make up for this slight oversight. With a rumble, he ripped the sky in two.
Laura looked up in horror.
Large balls of fire rained down.
“They’re going to love it!” yelled Tuesday in giddy delight.
With a pop and a bang, the fire turned into confetti.
“Wow, what a surprise! This is the best Tuesday ever!” exclaimed Laura.
But, it wasn’t confetti. In his haste, Tuesday actually rained down tiny black holes.
The world was obliterated, and with it, Tuesday went into a puff of smoke.
Actually, I’m kidding about that. It really was confetti, and people started to realize they hadn’t respected all of the days of the week as they should have. The Pantheon of days reconvened and apologized to Tuesday for their rudeness to him earlier. They all wanted to be his best friend. More importantly, they wanted to know how he made that talking chicken.
“Oh, that wasn’t me.”
Not another word was said on the subject.