by Graham Stephen
I joined the army as a “fuck you” to my parents. They wanted me to attend Rhode Island School of Design and study paper mache, but I didn’t want to become another corporate sell-out. I wanted to chain smoke electronic cigarettes in my parent’s basement, while playing air bass to Weird Al’s Greatest Hits. I just needed to find a way to monetize this passion. I shot a youtube video, where I covered my body with strawberry-flavored lube and played air bass to Weird Al’s “Eat It.” It only got 15 views.
I decided to join the military, after talking to my Uncle Sam, not the fictional personification of America, but my actual uncle. He was a heavy-set man with alligator arms, a horse face, and a horse cock. I only knew the latter because my Uncle Sam once got drunk off turpentine and streaked through my sister’s ballet recital.
“Wanna really piss off your parents,” he said during a drunken rant. “Go join the military or sell your sister into Thailand’s booming sex trade.”
Thailand’s sex trade was in the midst of a recession, due to a recent genital warts epidemic. Also my sister Tara had recently gained 15 pounds and cut her hair short, which deflated her value so I chose the military.
I went to my town’s military recruiting center and met Corporal Sampson. He put out his massive hand to participate in the local custom of shaking hands. I didn’t want to shake Corporal Sampson’s huge mitt since I had weak bones in my hand from a fingering accident. I responded to his open hand with a curtsey. He chuckled and his head flew back, which caused him to accidentally choke down the six-feet of Bubble tape in his right cheek.
Coporal Sampson tried to throw it up, but couldn’t. He sipped from a bottle of Avion water, but was visibly nervous. I assured him that the six-feet of Bubble tape would not rest in his stomach for seven years and that it was an old wives tale. Wives of a certain age loved to scare their dopey children with this tale.
He drank three cups of coffee and left the office for thirty minutes. He came back relieved, after relieving 5 of the 6 feet of Bubble tape in his stomach. He was smiling and gave me the nickname Goofball, which I preferred greatly over my high school nickname “Faggot!”
Then Coporal Sampson told me I’d start basic next Monday. He said, “You’ll start basic next Monday.”
This was rather disheartening since, I believed I was ready for Cadet Training. I didn’t want to waste my time with Basic, when I already understood keen military strategy. I had fought in over 500 World Wars in the board game Risk. The key to winning world wars was to roll a six. My other strategy was to set-up huge armies on the borders and secure Australia. Coporal Sampson disagreed with my insistence on invading Australia, but agreed with heavily protecting our borders from enemy combatants or Mexicans looking for dishwashing jobs.
Basic training was no vacation, although it was better than the summer of 2007, when my family vacationed in Korea’s Demilitarized Zone. At Basic, I was woken up every morning before I could even begin my REM cycle. Staff Sergeant Peters would scream at me, as I removed the cucumbers from my eyelids. I barely had time to wash off my face cream, which kept my skin hydrated and smelling of fresh mangos.
Staff Sergeant Peters had the gall to mistake my excellent hygiene practices as a sign of weakness. He was particularly frustrated with me on my first day when I came into line-up wearing no pants.
“Where’s your pants?!”
“It’s my first day!” I aptly argued.
“You’re just making excuses!”
“Yes, I’m glad we’re on the same page.”
But we weren’t and his contempt for me burned uncontrollably, like a SoCal fire during dry season.
The next day my bottom bunkmate Speedy, nicknamed Gonzales, helped me put on my pants. He held them up and I jumped from the top bunk into my pants. My fellow grunts began copying me and it became the standard way to apply pants on all military bases. It cut three seconds out of pant application time.
I had revolutionized basic training in three weeks, but Staff Sergeant Peters still called me an imbecile, an idiot, and a moron. I tried to point out that his insults didn’t make any sense because an imbecile, an idiot, and a moron were three different levels of stupid, according to psychology, so how could I be all three. He responded by holding his boot on my back, while I attempted to push my body up from the earth’s gravitational pull. Basic training would have been much easier on the moon.
This was certainly a negative work environment, which I tried to address with Staff Sergeant Peters.
I’d say, “Staff Sergeant Peters. Maybe we could–.”
Then he’d cut me off and launch into a perfectly strung together mash-up of hateful obscenities. They usually involved his inaccurate perceptions of my sexual orientation.
He’d say, “What’s the problem, Goofball? You’re too busy fantasizing about smoking poll to climb that wall.”
Staff Sergeant Peters seemed to believe that most grunts could overcome any physical challenge as long as they could keep their homosexual fantasies at bay.
After training, we went to the mess hall, where Staff Sergeant Peters sat at the officers’ table. He looked less miserable than normal. This was my chance. I gathered all the false confidence I could muster and said, “Staff Sergeant Peters. I believe you’ve created a negative workplace.”
Staff Sergeant Peters wasn’t paying attention. He was engrossed with his generous helping of beans.
My hands began to shake. I lost all false confidence
“Can I have your beans?”
This was a stupid thing to say. Everybody knew according to Rule 369 dash H apostrophe 99 comma B with a tilde in the 2014 U.S. Military Handbook, it was high treason to ask a superior officer for his beans, especially navy beans.
“You want my beans? Then you’re going to have to fight me for my beans!”
“But I don’t know how to fight.”
“Well, you’re gonna learn!”
While I waited for him to give me a syllabus and a class time, he sucker punched me in the stomach. All the combined atoms of oxygen were driven out of my body and I collapsed to the ground. I was sure I was going to die, but instead I just blacked out, as the back of my head slammed into the linoleum floor.
I was finally unconscious long enough to enter my REM cycle. I dreamed about having sex with a Blue Whale, while being cheered on by a Merman wearing a stethoscope and holding a camcorder. Before I could picture our future calves, I woke up with a three hundred pound nurse on top of me. A doctor stood next to the bed holding a camcorder and cheering her on.
He kept yelling, “Go! Go! Give’m hell!”
I was trapped, unable to escape underneath her girth. Her body thrust up and down, until I finished. I had never had sex with a woman or whale before, but that day I did both.
Her exhausted, sweaty body rolled off me.
“You saved him! It’s a miracle!” screamed the camcorder carrying doctor, “I have performed a miracle!”
I was confused and sticky. Dr. Spoon explained to me that Nurse Barbara had saved my life. I had been in a coma for six months and pronounced a vegetable by every respectable doctor. Sick children had already been calling dips on my vital organs. Lucky for me, Dr. Spoon had taken an interest in my case and he was not a respectable doctor.
Other doctors would making quacking sounds and flap their arms, like wings, when Dr. Spoon would walk by. He was known as the foremost quack in medicine, who had only graduated medical school because he was a member of the Spoon legacy, a 7th generation doctor.
He had become a laughingstock, after he did a five-year trial attempting to prove HIV could be cured with Vick’s Vapor Rub. It was unsuccessful.
He had entered me into his new trial experiment, which went against everything human beings knew about anatomy. He believed the male’s brain actually resided in the penis, and by increasing the blood flow to the penis, the patient would awake from their coma. While the brain existing inside the penis was a popular metaphor used by women, only Dr. Spoon believed it as scientific fact. Dr. Spoon went on to win the Nobel Prize for Physiology and an AVN award for best amateur sex tape in the Fatty Category.