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The front door of Dr. Stanley Touche's unremarkable home burst open at 6:17 AM. Still in his pajamas, he ran barefoot across the dewy grass, his arms waving above his head orangutan-style.
"The female orgasm is a myth," he bellowed to his sleeping neighbors.
Picking up speed, he sprinted directly for Tommy the paperboy and launched himself into a Captain Kirk-like flying bodyblock. From their bedroom window, Mrs. Touche watched as her husband sent the boy tumbling off his bike.
"The female orgasm is a myth," Dr. Touche shouted as he pedalled furiously on the ridiculously small dirt bike, throwing rolled-up newspapers at the foreheads of everyone he passed.
Hours later, after the Xanax had worn off, Mrs. Touche got out of bed to make some coffee. She clicked on the television, where the image of her husband, his face streaked with sweat and grease, his jammies in tatters, sat behind a desk on the local news hour.
"Research has shown that the female orgasm--"
A hail of gunfire interrupted his lede, tearing for Dr. Touche dozens of new assholes. A "Technical Difficulty" message filled the television screen.
In heaven that day, God informed Dr. Touche that the female orgasm was in fact a myth. I mean, come on, has anyone ever seen this elusive beast? Anyone?
Date Written: July 16, 2004
Average Vote: 4.2222
1) Dr. Stanley Touche is possibly the work of OSS, but the argument here is week, and if it is his, he may have chosen this name to cover his tracks. On the one hand, you’ve got touché without the accent, on the other you’ve got douche without the D. Interesting. Let us look further.
2) “...his arms waving above his head orangutan-style.” Has OSS fingerprints. The hyphenated “orangutan-style” as opposed to the more common “like an orangutan” seem like it could be an OSS touch. The image itself, hyphenated or not, has a certain OSS aura to it. But is it genuine? Let us look further.
3) "The female orgasm is a myth." Could very well be the foundation of an OSS short. It is just the sort of unpopular crackpot notion that OSS cherishes (like “Shakespeare’s no good” or “wine doesn’t go with food” or even, to a lesser extent, “smoking weed makes me not want to eat.”) Or is this merely a meaningless coincidence? Let us look further.
4) “Captain Kirk-like flying bodyblock” is very damning. Not only is OSS known to have sited particular amusing Captain Kirk fighting moves in the past, but “flying bodyblock” is an actual (though perhaps uncommon) wrestling move. OSS is in a position to know this, and has been known to use such specific terms in the past, where others might settle for “tackle”. However, perhaps any pro-wrestling aficionado might describe the scene the same way. Let us look further.
5) The “Hours later, after the Xanax had worn off...” graf also displays OSS tendencies. The shift in POV to the wife followed by the surprise shift to the TV and the revelation that Dr. Touche is a news anchor have the feel of an OSS device. Shuffling through scenes or POVs in quick succession has been used by OSS in “Oz Fan Fiction”, “One peanut butter and salt sandwich” and other shorts. However, this short makes limited use of this technique and it is not clear if such usage has any significance. Let us look further.
6) “interrupted his lede” is OSS-ish. He has co-opted “lede”, I believe, from scoop and his noble industry of journalism. Does it apply to TV newscasts or just print journalism? I don’t know. But maybe OSS doesn’t either. “Dozens of new assholes” could be an OSS cliché twist. But is it? Let us look further.
7) The epilogue, I would have said is not OSS, because OSS is an atheist, But the sad fact is that I would be projecting. While I would never include some shit about a so-called god due to my hatred of all things religious, OSS would have no such compunction. Further, the “One peanut butter and salt sandwich” ends in a very similar fashion. Perhaps too similar? Let us look further.
8) The final shift to a narrators voice and a direct address of the reader could be seen as an OSS move. It feels like the way he might end this short, cutting the crap and getting down to what he believes (or pretends to believe) to be the actual point: the idea that the female orgasm is a myth, here stated as the word of God. This fits with OSS’s tragic confidence that his crackpot theories are incontrovertible truths. But does that mean he wrote it? Unfortunately, there is no further we can look!
Fortunately I have developed a powerful software package that can usually predict who the author of the short on the home page is. Unfortunately, it is unable to come to a determination on this one.
So, you decide. I however, will bet that this is OSS, though I do not believe it is his best work.
07/21/2004 Jon Matza: Snow, I know you mean well and are concerned for OSS' hypersensitiveness to being identified as the author of this short--but pretending you think he did write the short actually comes across as cruel and demeaning. You should say what you really think about whether or not he wrote the short.
07/21/2004 Ewan Snow: Huh? Are you making a joke I don't get? Otherwise, I don't know if he wrote it, but as I said, I think he probably did. Not that I couldn't be wrong. What's your point? Who do you think wrote it?
07/21/2004 Ewan Snow: First, why do you think I'm pretending? And second, how would that be cruel and demeaning? Cruel to whoever did write it (in your opinion, not OSS), or cruel to OSS?
07/21/2004 Ewan Snow: Further, I don't mean well and am not concerned for OSS' hypersensitiveness, in any case, though I don't see what that has to do with anything.
07/21/2004 Ewan Snow: Ah, I see your comment below. Sorry, thought you were serious.
07/21/2004 anonymous: two points of correction, snow:
1) touche is not an anchor. the implication was that he stormed the news studio and took over the desk. 'my bad' if that wasn't clear.
2) more importantly, i (oss) do not think the female orgasm is a myth. i do not espouse the viewpoint of touche. i myself have given many many many many many lucky women fabulous female orgasms. i have, in fact, experienced female orgasms. the idea of the short was that Touche was lousy in bed, and one day, in a fit of shame and rage, snapped over his wife's unresponsiveness. then, the punchline was that the narrator of the short, the storyteller as it were, only told this story as a smokescreen to get agreement that females can't achieve orgasm, because he, like Touche, is lousy in bed. it's actually a very sophisticated joke i was making.
07/21/2004 Ewan Snow: 1) wasn't clear to me. I thought he just went crazy and didn't go to make-up, hence the torn PJs, etc.
2) Yes, I figured much of that, which is why I said "(or pretends to believe)" and described it as the point of the short, rather than your point. Didn't mean to suggest that you haven't made very many many many many ladies happy. The narrator's motive joke is opaque, or at least I never would have guessed. The effect of the epilogue on me was that, while I started by assuming that Touche was just bad in bed and making excuses, I ended by thinking that in the world of the short his thesis was correct.
Also, aren't I great for all my insightful observations? I forgot to mention the "ridiculously small dirt bike" which was also an OSS indicator for some reason. By the way, that was a little clumsy. Touche knocks him off the bike (which goes undescribed) and next thing we know he's pedaling away (with no mention of him being hurt or getting back on) and then suddenly the bike gets a description/joke. And who shot Touche? Security?
07/21/2004 anonymous: i figured that if i show touche knocking the kid off his bike, and then in the next graf he's riding it, it would be clear what went on in between. as for the gunfire, the implication was that the powers that be, eager to squelch the earth-shattering news that the female orgasm is a myth (at least, it's "news" in the demented narrator/author's mind), sent in the national guard to kill the messenger and prevent worldwide panic.
07/21/2004 anonymous: and the narrator's motive joke should have been clear from the last two sentences. shame on you.
07/21/2004 Ewan Snow: As for the kid on the bike, yeah, I thought that too, that him getting back on shouldn't have to be shown. But somehow it felt clunky and I paused for a moment, maybe because you put the tiny bike joke in later rather than earlier, or maybe you shouldn't have shown him at all after the body block. I don't think you're seeing the narrator joke clearly from an outsider's perspective. I never would have guessed that was your intended joke. Maybe because the narrator only shows up in the last sentence. I mean, it seems like he's telling it to prove his point, but that makes it seem like Touche was right (and not merely bad in bed), and that, at least in the world of the short, it turns out that female orgasms do not, in fact, exist.
07/21/2004 anonymous: i guess that in the world of the short, the orgasms actually don't exist, because the short was written by a biased "author". holy shit, this joke's even more sophisticated and important than i'd originally thought!
07/21/2004 Ewan Snow: Yeah, and more half-baked, too!
07/21/2004 anonymous: i don't know. i think the last two sentences make it pretty clear. it's not that big a leap. the narrator's talking, so it's clearly from his point of view. the repeated questions make him sound sufficiently self-conscious and eager for support, i think. i didn't want to insult my readership by overexplaining it.
07/21/2004 TheBuyer: dramatic results. cool.
07/21/2004 scoop: This argument between you two sounds like something Ann Coulter and Bill O'Reiley would drum up in an effort to make themselves look fiercely independent and intelectually honest. If I was a member of the monolith and not the unilith I woudl suggest that this is yet another stunt by the WHers to dispel any possibility that the WHers think alike. Since I am a member of the unilith I won't do that. I'll just say Dostoyevsky is better than Nabokov, but not better than Gogol.
07/21/2004 Ewan Snow: First of all, this isn't an argument, dummy, it's merely a conversation. Second, as Dostoyevsky said, "we all came out from under Gogol’s ‘Overcoat’”. So stuff a sock in it!
07/21/2004 Craig Lewis: Scoop: please email me your address so I can post you nice paperbound copies of Pale Fire and Pnin. I've also got a Fine Young Cannibals tape here for Swow, which I'll drop off at his flat the next time I go to Kosar's for my bialys.
07/21/2004 anonymous: i'm disappointed that, like so many of today's coarsened media consumers, scoop, you only respond to opinions that are shouted, rather than reasonably set forth between two persons of substance. really, i expect more from a member of the fourth estate. now if you'll excuse us, ewan and i are having a delightful and informative conversation about craft.
07/21/2004 scoop: I will just say that being called a dummy is better than being called a stuffy cunt, but worse than being called a wonderful person. As for your conversation on craft I will merely add, adoy pffftttttttt doy hcikey duhduh thpppptttttt.
07/21/2004 Ewan Snow: ...also the monolith's pretensions to Britishness ("post", "flat"). Maybe Danko's the leader after all...
07/21/2004 anonymous: yes, scoop, quite. now, i'll retire to my chambers to further hone my pointy craft, whilst you return to the business of inflating your rabblerousing broadsheet's circulation figures. quite.
07/21/2004 scoop: I thought everyone knew Danko secretly controlled the monolith through a saavy manipulation of high-tech emotional blackmail and self-deprecating groans.
07/21/2004 Ewan Snow: I was going to respond to your last comment about the narrator, but I feel certain persons may not appreciate my important point. Feel free to stop by tonight so I can explain why you screwed up and also cuz of other reasons previously discussed. WINK WINK!!! COLONIAL POTATO CHIPS!!!
07/22/2004 TheBuyer: ya ferucio, i can do sound too. fu Lerpa, 'jammies'?
07/22/2004 Stash: TheBuyer: please prepare, as there is a mere 48 hour holding period, max. "if OSS wrote this, I'll karaoke 'I got you babe' dressed like Willie Nelson in drag and post pictures."
07/22/2004 Ferucio P. Chhretan: Hey Ol' Summer Sausage, in your mind does Dr. Stanley Touche in any way resemble Stanley Tucci?
07/22/2004 Ferucio P. Chhretan (4):
07/26/2004 Mr. Pony (4): Yes. This one works. Yes.