I was going to describe yesterday’s trip to buy school supplies, complete with my mixed feelings of shock, pride, and inadequacy when hunting down a calculator with required square root, exponent, and cosine functions—for my fifth grader*—and trying hard to set a good example for Sunny in my favorite office supply store, when all I wanted to do was join the chorus of, “If you get one, I get one, too!”
But this morning, a friend of mine—you can thank her later—sent me the latest in an off and on conversation we’ve been having about a flow chart she’d sent me:
I’d said that the whole thing looked sadly familiar, but that I really wanted to kill off a character with a Mongolian Death Worm.
She told me no.
I persisted, claiming that I really needed an interesting plot point, and she finally said this morning that I was welcome to kill off my characters (I’m paraphrasing slightly) but please NOT with a Mongolian death worm:
“First, how would you explain that it got there? Second, what the hell is a Mongolian death worm anyway?”
I gave it a generous second or two of thought and answered:
“Mongolian Death Worms are a delicacy in the finer Asian danger-fusion restaurants right now. If you remove certain parts of the worm, all the diner experiences is a warm glow and, an hour or two later, a colonic purge that is near-orgasmic in its intensity.
So it would be very easy to simply ‘forget’ to remove the certain parts of the worm (or switch worms) so that the diner/victim experiences an excruciating, karma-satisfying death.
Or so I imagine, since I refuse to google ’em.”
She e-mailed me back, saying that she’d changed her mind and I HAD to drop a danger-fusion restaurant in my new WIP and murder someone via Mongolian Death worm.**
I’m taking that as a victory of sorts.***
It turns out that she’d been picturing these Dune-like sand worm things—which I have to admit would take some finagling to be a realistic murder weapon outside of Frank Herbert’s universe^—while I’d immediately assumed it was a sort of hagfish/tapeworm thing, with a hint of fugu and maybe a soupcon of that psychotic shami kebab in the “Polymorph” episode of Red Dwarf.
I don’t know what influenced my friend’s vision, but mine stems from my fascination with what people will happily eat if they think it’s trendy—other people, I mean—and my inability to rationalize the existence of the hagfish.^^
And this fascinates me, how two people can come to completely different assumptions.
Three, really, because after I described the Death Worm differences to a co-worker,^^^ she looked at me for a second and said, “Oh . . . I thought it was something from the Kama Sutra.”
Now there’s a game of Clue . . .
What’s YOUR Mongolian Death Worm Like?
What Would YOU order at a Danger-Fusion restaurant?
Is fifth-grade math going to be THAT COMPLEX?!?
*Found it in pink. Who’s the Mom? I’m the Mom. Boo-yah.
** “It was Chef Antoine! In the Bathroom! With a Mongolian Death Worm!”
***Though I’ll have to set it aside for the right story . . . or the really, really wrong one I’ve always wanted to try . . .
^”It was Paul! In the subway! With a Shai-Hulud!”
^^I don’t lie awake at night or anything, but ugh.
^^^When you giggle in a library break-room, people ask questions. Oddly, they don’t seem to mind the answers. And sometimes they run with them . . .
14 thoughts on “Think I’ll Go Eat Worms . . . Not”
I’ve never even read Dune.
I wish I had thought up the Kama Sutra line, though. Props to your coworker!
Really? I’m not sure if you’d love it or be ticked off at Herbert’s style . . .
The Kama Sutra and sandworms aren’t naturally compatible thoughts . . .
I don’t know, they’re kind of phallic.
DP says I might like them because the mom is such a strong female character. (It’s gotta pass the Bechdel test, natch.) I’m still doubtful.
Try the first one. If you hate it, no harm, no foul, right?
I may’ve mentioned this before, but when I taught Grade Two math back in the day, I was mighty grateful for the teacher’s answer book.
Shoot, I had to ask the clerk to help me figure out what the calculator buttons meant . . .
I’m into the whole go-go dancer/private detective thing. I would call her Carlita and have her wearing sequins under her bully-vest.
Duuuude. Dibs on beta! 😀
Huh. Several weeks back, when I ate my first worm, I experienced nothing close to orgasmic.
Wrong kind of worm. And all things considred, you should probably count yourself lucky, Sherry! 🙂
You really need to cut to the chase and just write a sitcom already. The conversations that you and your friends have are so fantastic. It’d be the library version of Big Bang Theory. So great.
In other news, I so want you to kill somebody off with the Mongolian Death Worm. I’m almost sad you posted it here. What if somebody steals that idea! It’s so Sarah. You have to use it right away.
Maybe so, Lyra . . . I’ve always wanted to write for TV (she says, wistfully).
As long as a good writer steals it and let me read it, I think I’m okay with that, Lyra. Though there’s a story story contest coming up . . . 😉
You mean it’s not some kind of karate/tae kwon do/krav maga move perfected by Eliot Spencer? Tres disappoint.
‘Dune’ is far and away the best of the books. The second one bites, but is necessary to get to the third.
It could be . . . though you know what Hardison would say about any move called a ‘death worm.’ 😉
I completely agree about the second book.