Universal Stories

STUDENT sits at a table. ALIEN enters, turns a chair over, and sits inside the chair.

 

STUDENT

Hey, buddy. How are you enjoying Earth so far?

 

ALIEN

Your interplanetary exchange program leaves a lot to be desired. Apparently, educators on your planet desire apples from apple trees as a present. Adams apples, I discovered after the fact, are not an appropriate gift. By the way, your friend Adam will not be attending class this month.

 

STUDENT

You’re taking a Biology class, correct?

 

ALIEN

And failing it. Human biology makes no sense. What cruel god of your would make chocolate fattening? Fat is wonderful. Chocolate should make you explode so you’re spared its awful flavor, like with everyone else. On our planet, your Hershey and Dignitas companies have merged.

 

STUDENT

Hey, I didn’t make the rules.

 

ALIEN

(Sighs)

Tell me a story.

 

STUDENT

Pardon?

 

ALIEN

Your species values the universality of stories. Prove it. If I have to solve another biology worksheet, I’ll take a break from homework to eat some chocolate.

 

STUDENT

I’m no— wait. Have you seen Star Wars?

 

ALIEN

Yes! My favorite was when the Domp’ats of a red star fought the Domp’ats of a yellow star, and when the war was over both stars were black holes.

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STUDENT

Ok. Well, imagine that an evil Empire runs the universe.

 

ALIEN

Logically impossible.

 

STUDENT

So is that thing you call a penis. Anyways. There’s a Rebel Alliance that’s fighting the Empire, and they just stole the blueprints for the Empire’s biggest superweapon. The Empire catches up to the princess that has the plans, but she gives the plans to two droids and sends them on a desert planet before she’s captured.

 

ALIEN

Does the Empire not see this?

 

STUDENT

Well, the Empire scans the escape pod the droid use, but they detect no lifeforms, so they let it go.

 

ALIEN

That makes no sense.

 

STUDENT

Yeah, it’s kind of a plothole. In a universe where droids are common, you’d think…

 

ALIEN

…an advanced civilization like that should know that droids are lifeforms!

 

STUDENT

What?

 

ALIEN

Ipods, Roombas, Siri- they’re as alive as you are, and make more sense in design. Did you really think the shuffle function for your music is random? It disgusts me that you buy and sell such superior lifeforms.

 

STUDENT

Well. So anyways, a farmboy named Luke buys- I mean, befriends the two droids, who tell him the princess is looking for someone named Obi-Wan Kenobi. Luke knows Obi-Wan as a hermit named Ben, so they go and find him. Obi-Wan is wise in the ways of the Force. Now the Force is kind of hard to explain-

 

ALIEN force-chokes STUDENT for ten seconds, then lets go.

 

STUDENT

(Gasping to regain breath)

You… can use the… fucking force!?

 

ALIEN

Yes. I just forced you to stop using that offensive word. The ‘e’ word.

 

STUDENT

“Explain”?

 

ALIEN

Quiet! “Shut Deellup,” as your people say. That word is very vulgar in our language.

 

STUDENT

Can I still do what the word describes?

 

ALIEN

Since you are a man, yes. If you were a woman, we’d call you a slut.

 

STUDENT

Yeah, that happens on our planet too. So Luke, Obi-Wan, and the two droids hire a smuggler to take them to the princess’s home planet. Only when they get there, the planet is gone. It turns out it was destroyed by the Empire’s superweapon battle station, the Death Star. And the Death Star just captured our heroes!

 

ALIEN

How did the Death Star destroy the planet?

 

STUDENT

A giant laser.

 

ALIEN

That’s stupid. Why not introduce the plant to chocolate?

 

STUDENT

You’re still not over that, are you?

 

ALIEN

ZALPAX WAS MY BEST FRIEND, YOU ASSHOLE!

 

STUDENT

Moving on… before they’re captured, the heroes disguise themselves as enemy soldiers. They also find Princess Leia! They get out, but Obi-Wan is killed in the escape from the Death Star.

 

ALIEN

Wait. Are we past the midpoint of the story?

 

STUDENT

Yeah…

 

ALIEN

Where was the fishing competition? How am I to know which characters stand the best chance of surviving if it’s not symbolically shown by how many fish they catch?

 

STUDENT

But that has nothing to do with… anything. And Luke’s from the desert, he doesn’t know how to fish.

 

ALIEN

All the more reason he loses the competition and dies later!

 

STUDENT

All right, all right! Obi-Wan and Darth Vader, who uses the Force for the Empire, have a fishing competition with laser poles. Obi-Wan’s hook gets caught in his throat and Darth Vader pulls it too hard. Are you happy?

 

ALIEN

At least one character should catch a rainbow trout.

 

STUDENT

Do I really need to explai… you know what, let’s move on. The heroes go to the Rebel Base, but the Death Star arrives after them and threatens to blow everyone up. The droids give their plan to the Rebels, who find the weak spot of the superweapon. Luke and the rebels go in spaceships to fight the Empire. Most of the rebels die, but Obi-Wan comes back as a ghost and helps Luke use the Force to destroy the Death Star and save the galaxy!

 

ALIEN

All right! What’s a ghost?

 

STUDENT

A ghost? It’s when you’re dead, but a version of you can, like, walk through walls and be invisible.

 

ALIEN

Ohhhhh…

 

What’s dead?

 

STUDENT

You don’t know what death means?

 

ALIEN

We skimmed over it in Bio. Is it when you’re too lazy to breathe?

 

STUDENT

Never mind. Did you like the story?

 

ALIEN

It’s ok. Lots of consonants in it, which is always a plus. Someone needs to teach you to be more respectful to cultures that have weaker hearts for action. Also, did Luke choke the Death Star or something?

 

STUDENT

Yeah, maybe it’s best I don’t talk about the sequels. There’s a bunch of unexplained stuff and incest and plotholes in those.

 

ALIEN

Incest? That’s just gross, dude.

 

BLACKOUT.

 

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