Thoughts on the Worldstate by Hank
The hideous Mr. Kuttner returns with an equally hideous tale.
We absolutely guarantee this story will induce nausea and slight
regurgitation. Lead on, McKuttner!
I have, as usual, been brooding over the intricacies of modern
civilization. It seems to me that life is a peculiarly futile business.
This mood of mine may, perhaps, be attributed to my recent tragic
encounter with a horse at the corner of 42nd and Broadway.
I shall not dwell upon that incident, save to mention briefly that
horses should, at least, be careful of what they eat. One never knows
the result of the most innocent action, and that, by imperceptible
degrees, brings me to the subject of this article, PLAYING FAIR WITH
FANS, or, FANTASTIC DECENCY.
It has been said (and very loudly, too) that fans fight a lot. Well, I
do not care to refute that; I happen to know that a Californian fan, a
Mr. Ackerman, is in the habit of knocking down visitors and kicking them
in strategic places. The question naturally arises, does fantasy lead to
I am reminded of the remarkable case of Scarlett O'God, an ardent fan
whose tininess led to her being occasionally called by the diminutive,
or fanny. This may seem somewhat confusing at first glance. Let us,
therefore, go hastily on to the next paragraph.
I should, perhaps, mention a mysterious white-bearded gentleman called
Tarboth the damned, or Toby, since he played a significant role in the
incident. It was he who listened, toying at his beard idly, while
Scarlett feverishly upheld her position against the onslaughts of her
foes. Just what caused the argument I cannot recall at the moment. Nor
does it matter especially. I believe it had something to do with
Scarlett's being locked out of the Sanctuary, or Washroom, by previous
Mocked, scorned, and jeered at, Scarlett at first said nothing.
Ultimately, however, she lost her temper and cursed her enemies roundly.
"I would," she observed with feeling, "sell my soul to the devil in
order to obtain vengeance!"
At this moment the white-bearded gentleman smiled unpleasently and
vanished. Simultaneously lightning struck the Sanctuary and demolished
it, to the natural discomfiture of the occupants. Laughing in a
triumphant manner, Scarlett departed.
But the seeds of doom were already sown within her soul. Not until she
was soaked to the skin did she realize the ghastly and hideous truth.
Then, looking up, she saw that above her hovered a small black cloud,
from which rain was steadily descending. As she realized the terror of
her position, black horror flooded the girl. SHE HAD BECOME ALLERGIC TO
Well, after that, of course, matters got steadily worse. She was driven
from home, after blasting the bathtub and spoiling a valuable Angora
kitten. (It was later made into a muff, but moths got into it. That,
however, is another story, and not an especially good one.)
Poor Scarlett was excluded from all fan gatherings. Sun stroke and
eclipse were her constant companions. She came with the deluge and was
gone with the wind.
The girl was utterly friendless. She roamed wildly here and there,
haggard, careworn and miserable, in a tattered gown made from the covers
of AMAZING STORIES. At night people could hear her moaning under their
windows, and they huddled closer to the fire, whispering, "Fetch aft the
rum, Darby! Evil walks abroad tonight and I feel my soul shudder in me.
No soda, thanks!"
Hopeless and forlorn, Scarlett stowed away on a schooner out for Hong
Kong. But she was discovered, cursed for a Jonah, and set ashore on a
cannibal isle in the South Seas.
It was a blessing in disguise. The natives mistook her for a goddess.
They were used to bad weather, and did not attribute the altered climate
So they garlanded her with leis and made her their queen.
And she rained happily ever after.