by MK Laughlin
Benjamin Cottage, age eleven, lay dying in an oncology ward, surrounded by his family, who did not want to let him go. A millionaire scheduled for liposuction in the same hospital heard about Ben and offered to grant him a final wish. “His favorite movie is Jaws,” sobbed Mrs. Cottage, “and it’s always been his dream to meet a member of the cast — is this something you could arrange on short notice?” The millionaire made some calls but received no answer from Hollywood, so with time running out he improvised as best he could. “Look at this, Ben,” he said, guiding an elderly Little Person into Ben’s hospital room, “this guy right here was in the movie — he was the stunt double for Richard Dreyfuss during the shark cage scene... Spielberg was very sneaky don’t you see... he wanted the shark to look bigger, so he made the actor look smaller!” This lie had three results: 1) Ben Cottage died a happy little boy in the company of his family, his benefactor, and the kindly LP who worked in the hospital parking garage, 2) the millionaire felt so good about himself that he cancelled his liposuction, booked a cruise, and strutted around on deck with no shirt on, and 3) the Little Person, reminded of his own unfulfilled goals, decided to pursue a lifelong dream: scuba-diving in Australia, which he’d avoided up to that point due to an intense fear of Great White Sharks.
6S - C1
MK Laughlin, author of Zombies, spends too much time watching old movies.