The Curious Case of a Man with Gelotophobia

For a long time, we’ve thought about publishing a book. Not a normal, mainstream crap book like “Twilight” (oh no, my boyfriend’s a vampire, the horror!) or “Harry Potter” (zippity-zoopity zap, take that Voldemort… What kinda name is Voldemort, anyway?); we’re making a really cool book. The kind you won’t see at Barnes & Nobel for various legal reasons. An underground masterpiece with a cult-like following.

The only trouble was “what to write about?”

But after two weeks of (as much as we hate this word) “brainstorming” ideas, we thought of a suitable topic: freaks! Weird loners who don’t seem to have any friends! Our school is filled with them! From the cannibal who eats his neighbors to the arsonist who burns down churches, our book on freaks will cover them all. We’ve written about three chapters so far, and we’ve decided that we’re gonna give you all a free sampling. Now, get ready to have your world rocked as you step into the mind of a freak. Note that this portion of the book is written in “diary” form.

My name is Albert Flatt. All my life I’ve, in a way, wanted real friends that would never leave me. The problem was, I knew in my heart (without even having to meet them) that they’d leave me without a second glance my way. Pretending to have friends solved my problem… For a little while anyway. This is my epic. It’s no tale of rising glory, of overcoming monsters, of sailing the high seas. Nay, it’s a tale of betrayal, of hardship, of cannibalism. But it’s all I know.

All through High School I never made an attempt to make real friends and relationships because I always knew I had my imaginary friends to fall back on. My imaginary friends would never betray me- they wouldn’t even know how. So, in contrast, I spent my High School days as a nerd (or, as the jocks liked to say, a “freak”. But I showed them…). I was tormented and ridiculed for being who I was. Girls thought it was odd how I talked to myself on occasion. Of course, I wasn’t “talking to myself”- I was talking to my friends no one else could see. In school, I didn’t need real people. I had all the friends I needed, real or not.

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Nowadays, I’m about 40-50 years old (I’m not telling you my exact age because I’m afraid of giving too much information to “real” people), I live with my mom in her basement, and I haven’t been in contact with a living human besides my mom, the clerk at the D&D store which I frequent, and my mailman, for about thirty years. I don’t like to chat with any of them except for my mom (whom I occasionally come on to), and the mailman whom I hit with a baseball bat if he tries to get to close to my mom. Heh heh. If you consider that “chatting”.

Chatting with my imaginary friends is much more entertaining. They tell me jokes and I laugh and laugh and laugh and laugh and laugh and laugh and laugh and laugh and laugh and laugh and laugh and laugh and laugh and laugh and laugh. I’ll tell you one that made me laugh and laugh and laugh… “Why did the chicken cross the road?” … Answer me, please. … ANSWER! … ANSWER MEEEEEEEEEEE!!

But where are my manners? I haven’t introduced you, the audience (I know you’re there, I can hear your mind moving), to my bestest friends, although not quite “living”, on the whole planet. I have four and a half friends: One of them is a pink polka-dotted Power Ranger (I love that show- I have all the seasons and action figures, and even keep the actor of the red Power Ranger of the original series in my closet), one’s a dragon (I’ve always nursed a soft spot when it comes to dragons), one’s a dog who looks shockingly similar to Hitler, and one is a scary, blood-drenched clown who attracts little children into his van by offering them candy. Although they aren’t the greatest of people with the greatest morals you’ll ever meet, they’re fine once you get to know them.

The problem is, my mom has been trying to get me involved with “real” people when I’ve got all the people I need in my life right here in the basement. What’s the difference between real and imaginary people? I’ve lived so long without knowing real people, I think I’ve forgotten. Is there even a difference? What’s so great about “real” people? Real people can hurt you, and scary clown doesn’t it like it when I hurt…

You see, Mother has this crazy idea that being alone in the dark, soulless basement all day could “warp” me. I told her that I’m as warped as I’m gonna get, but it only seemed to worry her more. But tonight, I’ll show her just how normal I can be by demonstrating my oh-so-normal ability to handle a running chain-saw without harming a soul. Won’t Mother be surprised when she is awoken by a man wearing a hockey mask wielding a chain-saw, and then see that she still has her arms and legs attached to her body! I just hope, for my mom’s sake, that I’m as good with the chain-saw in real life as I think I am… You see, I’ve never actually held one. But I’ve seen people on my television (sweet, sweet television) juggle them all the time!

I hope I’ve explained my predicament well enough. I don’t think there is anything wrong with having imaginary friends, I only wish my mom would be convinced. I’m happy how I am, but sometimes I wonder what life would be like without the paranoia and pills I undergo every day…

We think that’s enough for a teaser. Chapter one ends there, but there are about 756 chapters in the finished novel. Wanna find out if Albert Flatt really does chop his mom up? Or if he ever sees the light of day from his lonely basement again? Then buy our finished novel at any local book store (as long as it’s not from Barnes & Nobel) and find out!

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