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So, one day, at about two in the afternoon, a furniture salesman named Shelts took a break and sat down to enjoy a glass of milk outside, a delicious glass of whole milk, above a velutinous panorama of hills and mists. Well, halfway into his glass, he almost gulped down a sock that was floating in the drink. Quickly, he fished it out. Aha! A long, wet tube sock with red stripes at the top.
Shelts was absolutely grossed out, how revolting, especially considering that the bottom of the sock had some wear and tear, and he dashed off to chuck it over the cliff into the velutinous panorama. But before he let get of it, the sock cried out, "Please, Shelts! Don't do it. Don't throw me over! I will do anything!"
He said to the sock, "Oh, really? What exactly can you do for me? I am really furious about this."
"Well," said the sock, "I can talk. Do you happen to like conversation?"
"Not really," said Shelts. "I prefer peace and quiet."
"Oh, well, no problem," said the sock. "I can just shut up and keep one of your feet all warm and cozy."
"Oh no no, that just sounds uneven," said Shelts. "I really don't like any of the options you've offered so far. What's more I didn't at all like the taste of you skulking around in my milk in the first place. So off you go."
And with that, he threw the sock off the cliff, off to drift down the hills and mists, off into the velutinous panorama. And that would have been the end of it, except that the magic of milk did not stop there. No, hardly.
Milk enjoyed such a remunerative renaissance, this new kind of milk that could spontaneously generate sentient socks and curious coats of all kinds. Milk became the great worldwide seamstress and no gulp or swallow went without a complimentary sleeve streaming from the side of every cup.
Eventually, it dawned upon Shelts that he had been quite unfair. And as the furniture business took one of its occassional plummets, Shelts found himself begging the cartons in his own refrigerator for some kind of gloves or vest. Even a sock, a worn tube sock, with a dirty sole and red stripes, perhaps? What a terrible spot Shelts had got himself into, not a single gallon or half would pay mind.
Ah, but no matter, he didn't last long. Milk and its magic soon learned to generate more milk and more milk magic. And the land was awash in self-reciprocating dairies, happily lapping against each other, so that there were no more roads and no furniture and no more furniture salesman to sell furniture and no hills or mists and no velutinous panoramas.
All that was left in that whole world was a clumsy antelope who had gotten herself trapped in an airtight barrel, bored and snorting, bobbing across the many milks.
by why the lucky stiff
june 15, 2007