2012 -- 4.2 (Spring) Fiction

A Cruel Irony

By: Robert Griffin

A Cruel Irony

“Hello. I am Ted,” I said “and I am carrying the new living lord.”

The “wagon circle”, as the counselor called it, was comprised of: Sarah, the counselor (forty-sevenish, married but lonely); Parker, a schizoid homeless nihilist man with, get this, a chronic masturbating syndrome; Jeff, a man who stabbed an elderly woman with a plastic “spork” at a picnic for no reason; and me, thirty-two, single, male and pregnant, pretty damned happy if you ask me.

The group sessions for “people like us”, as Sarah would say, was what was replacing my church visitations these days. Ever since I had been

“Immaculately conceived… in…” Which is what I had told people when they noticed my swollen stomach and new, “touchy”, attitude, invoking short choking fits and a glare of disgust.

“Yes, I was knocked up by God…” I told the people in my church with a big smile. At first they thought of it as cute, but as they began to see it as a lifestyle choice, the less sensitive they became until, I had to leave. I had expected a different reaction.

“So, Reverend Bob,” Parker always called me “Bob”, “What are you doing tomorrow at four in the afternoon?”

“Parker, we don’t ask other member’s to join us in our neurosis!” Sarah chimed in.

Parker mumbled something close the word “Bitch” before one of his alter-egos got him and he was suddenly a plumber from New Kinsey, Kansas, named Buck.

Two men in white coats came and pulled him away as he kicked and screamed about a rusty copper pipe in the ceiling.

“So, Reverend Ted,” Sarah distracted us from the scene, “How has your community been reacting to your…Discovery?”

The pretentious bitch doesn’t believe me either, I thought. I put my hand on my stomach and gave her puff, jerking my head away from her in disgust.


“Oh, it wasn’t too bad.” I responded to the wall, “You know, the normal. They basically shunned me out and now my unborn child and I will be looking for a place to sleep!”

“Oh, I am so sorry!” She exclaimed. Thus began an hour long apology session in which I developed a pulled muscle in my neck due to the length of time I was staring at the wall.

I’ll show you! I’ll get an ultrasound and let you see the little savior!

“I think we’re done here, Doctor.” I said and stormed away.

Now, normally, I would think of an ultrasound as a sin, what with the inherent evils of technology, especially when it came to seeing the unborn savior deep in my belly, but with the lack of the patrons of my church to support me, I had begun to fall away from my reliance on the acceptance of my congregation.

I arrived at the Gynecologists office around eleven thirty in the morning. As I sat and waited for the tech to get back from going to the bathroom my mind wandered and raced as I began to think of the possibilities of its sex (admittedly, I was a bit behind in my education of medical advances, because when I asked the technician if she could tell me if it was a boy or a girl, she gave me a puzzled look and told me that it was far too soon. We had an uncomfortable laugh I only stopped looking at the ceiling panel when she gasped and said something in a foreign language.

Over the course of three days and four “exploratory operations” it turned out that the “baby” I was having was actually a “nondescript mass in [my] abdomen containing estrogen”.

Trying to explain to my “brethren in Christ” that having a large mass removed from my stomach that I mistakenly claimed to be the next christchild wasn’t even close an abortion was a difficult task and eventually I decided that I didn’t care for them anymore anyhow.

Arriving at the bar, the bartender acknowledged me, and went back to entertaining the customers. I ordered scotch on the rocks and sat down in a booth with my head hung between my arms.

I wonder what Parker is doing today…

I looked at my lap for a moment….

“Besides,” I said aloud before taking a hard shot, “what has God done for me anyhow?”