The Skull Was Talking to the Pumpkin

I was listening to the skull talk to the pumpkin, over the last couple months–oh, I should explain that. You see on Halloween I bought one of those bumpy weird looking pumpkins, for display, the kind that looks like a skin disease under a magnifying glass, and like all pumpkins it lasts a remarkably long time without visibly rotting. I kept monitoring it and it didn’t seem to rot, and I was impressed. So the pumpkin became prideful, and I was nearby, heard it boasting of its longevity. Next to the pumpkin is a plaster skull we actually bought at Target, made in China, covered with decorative Chinese characters; it came that way and we have no idea what the Chinese writing says. I figure the writing says good luck or is a conciliation to ancestor spirits, but it could say, “Screw you, American, we hate this sweat shop.” The skull doesn’t know either, I asked it. But it has opinions about the pumpkin–says it’s vain and foolish. The pumpkin said “I shall last longer than you. You are plaster. The rain will wear you away.” The skull said, “No–when anyone sees me they think Death. I am Death! Death outlasts life every time. If I wear away or shatter, I’m even more proof of Death. I’m entropy personified then. So Death remains–I remain forever! But you are already rotting!” “I am not rotting!” But it was–today after all these months I checked it, its bottom was finally rotted, and I had to throw it away.

I was tempted to shatter the skull, to get rid of it and its sneering, but as the skull pointed out–that wouldn’t work.


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