Monday, June 30, 2003

A fictography* (with a nod to Hot Soup Girl)

All I ever wanted was to marry a nice girl, raise three kids, pilot experimental aircraft and bomb the hell out of the commies.

Not original ambitions, I’d admit, but it was the Eisenhower administration.

My own childhood’s kinda blurry. Dad, was mostly a pipe and newspaper. Mom was a towering hourglass: I’d trouble seeing past her skirts. Her face usually got blocked by her two-warhead-caps bust-line anyway. I guess that involved some pretty uncomfortable underwear, but all women sorta looked custom-moulded then. Just like all men arrived starched, pressed and pipe-smoking.

At military school I learned Dad was a psychologist and a biological determinist. Probably explains why he never spoke to me much. He invented a lie-detecting machine called the polygraph. It wasn’t a bomb, but it helped catch commie spies.

I guess I was a determinist too. I never surprised easy. Not even when I survived that test-flight crash-landing on an uncharted island.

It was a bit unusual to find a Hellenic civilisation 50 miles off the South West coast of the USA like that. Especially one that had spent 5,000 isolated from the outside world - and men. The whole place was swarming with female warriors. Greek gods visited sometimes, but only to make trouble, I reckon.

Still, it took me a while to realise I was not in Cuba. (I really didn’t know much about commies.)

The island was OK, but I didn’t fit in. What with being from the twentieth century, not worshipping incestuous gods and being male and all. So they decided to send me back with an ambassador for peace to “Man’s World” (not sure they realised we had women too, or maybe they was just thinking of President Eisenhower’s cabinet).

The best person for Peace Ambassador was gonna be a warrior, so they had a contest to pick one. They didn’t fight too bad for girls, even if their technology was all spears and shields and magic lassoes. (I thought cowboys invent lassoes, but it musta been ancient Greeks.)

The Queen’s daughter, Diana, won.

I never did think on how the Queen got herself a daughter. Or how they got along without men all that time. We didn’t have revisionist scholarship then, it was the 50s.

So, they looked at the bits of my plane and built the Princess an invisible jet. President Eisenhower should have got his hands on some Amazons instead of them left-over Nazi scientists. These gals went from chariots to stealth aircraft in an afternoon! They coulda blown up commies real good.

So, the Princess flew me back. She sure knew how to sell her message in Man’s World - what with the Stars and Stripes style one-piece bathing suit and her tall read boots and all.

After the air force psychologist - who looked a lot like my Dad - was through with me, I got assigned a desk job. Grown men shouldn’t believe in Amazons. Or lady aircraft engineers. Just determinism.

Still, working in the General’s office was fine. He got a new airforce secretary too, pretty girl with glasses. She always gave her name military-style: “Princess, Diana”. Miss Princess always seemed to have eyes for me. But I only had eyes for the Ambassador: swooping from the skies to lasso bad guys.

The rest of my airforce career was a mite strange. I got kidnapped lots. I was killed at least once. A robot-double of me married Miss Princess a couple of times, and I think I was only a clone of myself for a while. I saw the Ambassador plenty though, what with all the rescuing.

One morning I woke up and I was twenty again, and it was the Reagan administration. It was pretty crazy how the whole time-line had just rearranged itself without most folks noticing. I thought of calling my Dad - but he’d just say, “Son, it’s in your genes”. (He started talking to me after Watergate. He took that hard.) Still, I had a whole new chance to fly experimental aircraft and bomb the hell out of commies. I wound up on that dang island again, and got flown out by the Princess again. No invisible jet though - she could fly magically. I missed the jet - but they said the idea was too “phallic” and “sixties”.

I didn’t argue, not while being carried by an Amazon in a patriotic swimsuit.

Things worked out different this time round. It took another three Presidents, and the Princess Ambassador needed a business suit and a PhD in international relations, but now US foreign policy seems ready for an Amazon Warrior Ambassador for Peace.

There may be no more commies, but it’s good to see that World Peace by Armed Force can be a job for a good woman, even a princess.

I sure do miss that lasso, though.

*A fictional character’s autobiography
(more about polygraphs and dad)

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