Cosmic Vomit
by Don Cheney
A multi-media project by Max Cheney
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-¿Why don’t you talk to me, Nadia Comenic? -I asked Alix.


-Because you and your army of gargantuan snails are always showing off your fangs. Because approximately every other time I see you, you seem testosteronal -Alix said as he cooked a tater tot sandwich over an open flame-. Because I’m afraid that whatever you have, it’s contagious. It’s as simple as adding two and two.


I added ‘em up, but all I got was lambs wool.


-¿How much? -I prayed to Gϋnter Grass-. ¿How much is that, Alix?


I didn’t know how much it was, other than it was more than two. But, ¿what did Alix know? And, ¿when did he start knowing it? And, ¿where the freaking hell were my goddamn fangs?


-Two and two -Alix murmured. And fuck me if he doesn’t come up with 3-. Two plus two...


Let’s go, Alix, I thought. Come on. Two plus two is twenty two. Surely he knows that.


-Come on, dumb-ass. Two plus two -I repeated


Alix seemed a bit intimidated.


-I don’t remember. I should say “I don’t FUCKING remember”, because this is the science curse-offs.


Somebody shoot him. It’s not the preoccupation of France, my friend, and it has nothing to do with world peace.


Alix wouldn’t know a Contra if it shot him in the head and then skull-fucked him. The fangs I didn’t have were probably turning over in the grave at the missed opportunity to bite this dork sandwich.




When it was time to pass out drunk, my mom and dad were always the first in the auditorium.


-We want to be good sports, darling -Mom told me-, and we always want to be the first to start cursing.


Being intent on cursing didn’t mean that my parents had the most acerbic wit, but it did mean that they had upper respiratory problems.


-Be a good sport too, my son, my son -Dad said in a bad imitation of Doggy Daddy doing Durante.


-Thanks a lot, Dad -I said-. Thanks a lot.


This visit to the auditorium was etched in my brain - right next to the assassination of President Kennedy and Martin Luther King. It was like a gigantic Etch-A-Sketch®.


-Let’s go -Alix annoyed me-. This is about as much fun as cow juggling.


-I know what you mean by that, frog-brain -Mom said.


I saluted Mom and Dad and slapped Alix upside the back of his head. Sappho slapped my ass and then slugged me in the stomach so hard I couldn’t breathe.


-Pardon my right jab -She told me, moving her hand to cover her labia, which was emitting a sound of its own. That made Geoff a little nervous.


Alix and I weren’t going to be able to sit for a week. I looked at Melanie and Tanya. They weren’t particularly nervous. They were absolutely nervous.


Melanie was now housed in an enormous globe of Chiclets®. And Tanya was aiming to chew on her when she wasn’t looking.


Mr. Emerson Fittipaldi was making a scene just at that moment, as he crashed into Melanie’s globe. He had crashed right before he was to make a pit stop, in an attempt to get away from all of the Chiclets® that were surrounding him.


-Fuck all of you who have come to the First Science Curse-Off of the year. Yayyy -Mr. Emerson Fittipaldi announced-. I especially want to thank the students, the teachers, the friends and families who are here today, as if anyone else would come to this godforsaken excuse for a piece of shit. And I just want to remind you that when I curse at the contestants, I am actually being nice. All that matters today is that you win and not that I call you a gutless, spineless, gonadless, dumb motherfucker.


If only George W. could hear Mr. Fittipaldi, hear the passion and courage in his voice when he tells someone that they’re a crap-eating, chicken-shitting, candy-ass.


-Let’s start, penis-heads -Mr. Fittipaldi said-. Remember that when we ax a question, a piece of equipment might fall on you. The size and weight of the equipment has been predetermined. God help all of you.


Mostly it was amplifiers that they dropped on people, and sometimes sacks of disemboweled fish tacos.


-Let’s start off with some heavy equipment... err... I mean... questions -Fittipaldi announced.


BIG fucking shit. I’m not even gonna respond if they ax me the question.


-As much as I like to talk shit, I think I’ll take the rest of the day off -Mr. Fittipaldi said-. ¿Does anyone know what the initials SMF stand for? And it’s not a single transsexual.


Geoff looked at Sappho, but neither of them were stupid enough to answer.


-Great, wake me up when somebody responds -Mr. Fittipaldi said, raining sarcasm.


¿Why doesn’t someone just drop a piano on those pipsqueaks, Sappho and Geoff? ¿Is Fittipaldi serious when he talks decapitation, or is he just jerking us around?


-¿SMF? -Sappho axed-. I’d be a fucked-up auto mechanic if I didn’t let you respond, Asswipe... I mean, Geoff.


-No -Geoff was so sure-. You respond. You’re always running off at the mouth like David Huntley or something. Show us what an asshole you are.


Sappho shook her head.


-This isn’t anal retention surgery, just take a guess at the answer.


A renegade to the end, Geoff pushed his own face into pie.


-SMF... -Geoff murmured-. It’s not that fucking difficult.


-You two sure piss me the fuck off -Mr. Emerson Fittipaldi said-. I’m sure you have quite weak and similar genetic histories.


Geoff looked up after that one.


-My DNA is actually SNA -Oh, Christ, no-. I heard that if you have SNA you’ll get genetically parted-out after you die.


¿Why did I leave my fangs at school? ¿Why? ¿Why? ¿Why? Geoff’s brain was turning into gelatin right before my eyes, and all I had was a cup.


-I don’t remember -Geoff finally said.


Mr. Fittipaldi turned to Melanie and Tanya.


-¿What kind of equipment should we drop on you two? -He axed.


That was the kind of question you never want to hear. And neither of them had the mental prowess to answer appropriately. Hell, they might not even know it’s a question. I thought that, but I didn’t tear them limb from limb.


Melanie knew that she didn’t have a Chiclets® chance on a playground if any equipment got tossed her way.


-¿Can I call a time out? -She asked, trying to mask her nervousness with a dumb-ass question.


I looked at my parents for the first time today. Dad was eating a sandwich of pig entrails. I looked again and he was pointing at the equipment, probably thinking what I was thinking.


-¿How about something in red? -Mr. Fittipaldi axed. His voice seemed like it was preoccupied with talking bad words.


I looked at Alix and realized suddenly that she was a she. She was mumbling “SMF” over and over and shaking her head like she was in some kind of a lunatic trance.



-We’re waiting for one of you strategically-shaved monkeys to answer -Mr. Emerson Fittipaldi said, channeling Black Adder.


Even though I knew I was in a public place, I was still paranoid that Eric would slice me up with a paring knife. I wouldn’t mind if I couldn’t see because he had cut my eyes out, because I didn’t like looking at my parents anyway. Besides, now that TV was closed-captioned, I didn’t need to see anyway.


-All right, quiz kids... And for your information the last answer was Stupid Motherfuckers... Let’s ax a different scientific... investigatory... Oh, fuck it. ¡Let’s just drop shit on these motherfuckers!


¡Someone throw this guy a sack of tacos!


-Okay, this time we’re fucking dropping shit -Mr. Fittipaldi announced-. ¿What do I mean when I say “Lick me”?


-I know this one -Alix said, pulling her face out of pie


I wondered where my fangs were, and then I wondered if I knew Alix’s gender, and then I got paranoid about Eric again.


-All right then, little Alix -Mr. Fittipaldi exclaimed-. ¿What do I mean when I say, “Lick me”?


There was an ominous silence as Alix turned and spat toward the lectern.


-Al-ix -The animated Mr. Fittipaldi said.


-Look, lizard-face, just give me a fucking minute -She replied, and then threatened to kill him, using only her right index finger.


I could hear the audience mumbling. And I could see the steam rising from the tops of their collective heads.


And Alix looked just like the punk-ass she was.


-It means just what I say. ¡You suck! ¡You suck! ¡You...!


-You fucked that opportunity, little Alix -Mr. Fittipaldi said-. The Science Curse-Off makes you nervous, ¿eh? Well, viddy well: ¿do you two want some blue equipment dropped on you, or do you want to answer a question?


Geoff was asleep, but not Sappho.


-Pinch me and repeat the question -Sappho sighed.


Mr. Fittipaldi was suspect.


-¿What do I mean when I say, “Lick me”? -He repeated.


Sappho took off her hat and fanned her self with it, because her head had become too hot.


-You say “Lick me” when you have money in your hand and lust in your gastrointestinal tract -Sappho said, her voice a bit gritty.


-Incorrect -Mr. Fittipaldi said quickly.


-¿Shit heel says what? -Sappho asked.


-¡¿What?! -Mr. Fittipaldi said without realizing that he didn’t believe what he couldn’t hear.


-Fuck you, pussy -Sappho insisted-. My dad is an oncologist and he can give you cancer. That answer was correct.


-And I’m an economist. ¡A fucking economist! -Someone in the audience, fond of humiliation, screamed.


-¿Is that you, Dad? -Sappho said-. I thought you were a...


-Sappho -Mr. Emerson Fittipaldi interrupted-. Shut the fuck up, please. “Lick me” does not mean “Tell me how wrong I am”.


Mr. Fittipaldi turned to threaten Tanya and Melanie.


-¿Girls? -He asked-. ¿Who knows how to curse?


Melanie got so agitated, her pulse rose above her head and started moaning.


-“Lick me”... ¿Isn’t that your name after you’ve had 10-12 drinks, lost your memory, your car keys, and your will to live?


-No. And fuck you too -Mr. Fittipaldi said. He said it, and then he started dancing in front of Melanie-. Not even remotely close.


-Second question. Now don’t piss me off. ¿In what year did Louis Pasteur do a naked poodle dance, like the clothed version I just demonstrated?


-¿Who? -Tanya said.


-¿Huh? -Melanie said.






A sack of pancakes flew by Mr. Fittipaldi’s head and landed in the laps of a mean streak of people, including Alix and the other contestants.


Alix shook her head. She was either going to pass out, or her dorsal fin was going to dislodge and pour into her eyes.


Oh well, it was better than seeing her nude. That gave me a stomach ache. ¿Was Alix “and... loving it”? No, she never “and... loving it”’d.


-I’m just a fucking dandy to ya’all, ¿aren’t I? -Alix exclaimed-. ¿Oh, yeah? Well, I don’t even want to be at this fucking Science Curse-Off. Fuck every bastard one of you.


-Fuck Geoff too -Sappho interrupted, as the Curse-Off finally kicked into gear-. That fucking pecker wood couldn’t even pronounce SMF. ¡He is an SMF!


--¡You Tampax® saleswoman! ¡Fuck you! -Geoff griped.


-¡In your Technicolor dreams! -Sappho spat.


-Not in my dreams -Geoff responded-. And believe you me, your dad ain’t an oncologist.


-He is an oncologist -Sappho said.


-No, he int -Geoff grunted.


-¡You bastard! -Mr. Fittipaldi intervened.


-It takes one to know one -I wasn’t sure, but I thought that was Sappho.


Melanie and Tanya weren’t paying attention, and neither was Sappho and Geoff, and neither was Mr. Fittipaldi. Melanie was trying to hold back an enormous globe from crushing everyone. And Tanya was staring down the front of her t-shirt.


-¡At least I fucking know how much two and two is! -That greaseball Alix said quickly-. ¿You want me to tell you? It’s the woman your dad slept with last night - less ten-. After he said that, there was no doubt I was going to set her TV on fire.


I passed the hot sauce and tried to proposition her.


-Excuse me, Alix -I sure had nothing, if not grit-. It’s not your fault that you’re a jackass. It’s...


Mr. Emerson Fittipaldi grabbed my throat.


-One of your teachers should’ve done this for Alix -He told me-. ¡Shut the freaking hell up!


I shut up.


-We’re going to try to ax another question -Mr. Emerson said, his voice trembling-. If you miss this one, we’re dropping the blue equipment. ¿Who described the earth as a poor man’s sun, with a tourniquet tied around it?


The sun. That reminded me of something. Oh yeah: breakfast. Michelle was always axing me questions while I was trying to eat.


-¿Sappho? ¿Geoff? ¿Do you know who said such utter bull crap?


-I don’t want any equipment falling on me -Geoff salted.


-Great. You don’t want any equipment falling on you. Then we have something in common: ¡I don’t want you all over my equipment!


-¡You bastards! -Mr. Fittipaldi said. I closed my eyes, probably for good-. You bastards -He said in a more suave tone-. ¿Are you going to respond, or should we rain down green equipment on you?


Melanie raised her hand.


-¿Yes, Melanie? -Mr. Emerson Fittipaldi said in a tone that was even more suave.


-¿Can we do both? I think you’ve been chewing so many Chiclets® and trying to be so cool, that you forget your dual nature -Melanie said.


Everybody had expected it to rain. but what was incredible was that it was raining inside. Not only was it incredible, it was bogey-5 for the Science Curse-Off course.


-No, we can’t do both, we’d need more Chiclets® -Mr. Fittipaldi said firmly. I could see his point. It was above his eyes, on top of his head.


-Then I won’t answer -Melanie replied.


-¿A sphincter says what?


Tanya lifted her head.




Mr. Emerson Fittipaldi shook his head.


-¿Do you know what you just said? You just said that you’re a sphincter who walks on Earth only when you’re too red from walking on the sun.


I looked out into the auditorium. My parents were looking up and praying.


I spat. And spat again. At least I think I spat again.


I looked at my fingers to count to 7. I wanted to count to 8, so I spat on my hands and tried again.


¿Was I spitting just like my dad does? No, I was spitting like a Ninja Turtle.


-¡Galileo! -I exclaimed.


Mr. Emerson Fittipaldi was in full cardiac arrest by the time he heard that. The audience held back their applause. But mom and dad looked like they were on fire to applaud.


I had been a nut-case before, but now I was cursing like a scientist.


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