I Am a Brain in a Jar

Honeycutt Five-Point-Oh

August 24, 2020 Klaus Brenner and Doctor Brandon Winter Season 1 Episode 19
I Am a Brain in a Jar
Honeycutt Five-Point-Oh
I Am a Brain in a Jar
Honeycutt Five-Point-Oh
Aug 24, 2020 Season 1 Episode 19
Klaus Brenner and Doctor Brandon Winter

Arthur Honeycutt 5.0 lives for the sale, forevermore.

The voice of The Brain is Sarah Nightmare. "Imagipalement" by Klaus Brenner. "Honeycutt Five-Point-Oh" by Dr. Brandon Winter.

Show Notes Transcript

Arthur Honeycutt 5.0 lives for the sale, forevermore.

The voice of The Brain is Sarah Nightmare. "Imagipalement" by Klaus Brenner. "Honeycutt Five-Point-Oh" by Dr. Brandon Winter.

Good evening. Did you know you’re my favorite listener? Yes, you, and only you.  Just don’t tell the others, okay?

We’ll get to the story in a moment, but first...

Are you the creative type? It’s alright if you’re not. You’re just dead to me, that’s all.

But if you are the creative type, then I’m sure you’ve experienced that most eternal and annoying of artistic predicaments, writer’s block. You know, when you sit down to write and there’s simply nothing there, deadline be damned.

If that’s the case, then may I introduce you to Imagipalement Incorporated?

For a nominal fee, the good scientists at Imagipalement will beam new and exciting ideas directly into your brain.

A late-night talk show run entirely by hyper-intelligent aardvarks. A planet where the best and worst people of all time play laser tag against each other with the fate of the universe at stake. And, at long last, the cephalopods rise from the sea and drive the human race to the brink of extinction. 

All these ideas are copyright of Imagipalement, and if you use them, they will sue you into oblivion. But they have other ideas that are almost as good, ideas that could be yours.

And now, there’s only a  forty-five percent chance of permanent psychosis. That’s closer to zero than a hundred, so there’s nothing to worry about.

Imagipalement. Invasive thoughts are our business.

Hunicutt Five-Point-Oh

Arthur Hunicutt Five-Point-Oh lives for the sale. It is his only thought and reason for existence. When he chooses to dream, he dreams of commerce. That is why he is here today, at the same door, talking to the same woman, holding the same case. It is something of a tradition for him now, and, he likes to think, for her as well. But he has never asked. He simply knocks each day at precisely 8:15 AM and the game begins anew. He has come here once a day, five days a week, for five thousand years.

That is not to say there have been no surprises in the one million, three-hundred thousand days Arthur and this woman have spent together. For the first five years, she opened the door for him. She wore a powder blue bathrobe then, though now it is darker. And she always smiled, and she still does. But for the last four-thousand, nine-hundred and ninety-five years, he has opened the door. It is part of their ritual.   

He is opening the door now. He is nervous for a moment—there is always the possibility that today will be the last day—but his fear is short-lived, because she is there, right where she is supposed to be. She has a hand held up against the light, as she always does, and he is pleased to see the look of surprise on her face. Perhaps, he thinks, she thought he had finally given up. Well, he had not, and he has surprised her again. It is always good to surprise customers. The unexpected is an important element of commerce, after all. Her hair is paler and coarser than it was when they first met, and her skin is not as smooth or as soft as it used to be, but he knows about age—he is not concerned. People change with time. That is a fact. He wonders briefly what that must be like, but wonder is not commerce, so he pushes it aside.

“Good morning, Mrs. McTavish. How are you this today?” She only stares at him. This is part of the game, and he is pleased to see she is keeping to it. 

“I’m a good judge of character. I bet you’re a busy lady. Am I right?” She looks at him from behind her hand. The light is quite bright this morning, he realizes, and he steps in front of her slightly to block it. She does not move. 

“I thought so. Like all of us, you struggle to balance a busy modern life with healthy eating. Well, today your ship’s come in! I would like to offer you a special deal on a brand new set of nutrient gel master plates. There’s no need to recycle the same old, same old anymore: I have here a wide variety of cuisines, and installing them into your nutrient dispenser is as easy as one, two, three. Italian, Chinese, Thai, Neo-Soviet, or Latter-day American, I have it all.” He leans forward now. Physical presence adds force to words, and knowing when and where to apply force is an important element to a successful sale. She does not move, but she does not stop smiling, either. This is a good sign. She has not said no. He notices her teeth have yellowed. People change with time, he tells himself again. It is a fact.

“And just because I like you,  I’ll throw in a set of cleaning brushes, free of charge. Just don’t tell my boss.” He laughs now, three times. Less is not enough but more and the humor becomes unsettling. He had noticed that with her in the early days. He steps back and waits. She is standing there with her hand in front of her face, not speaking. The light is very bright today, he thinks. He counts off 115 seconds of silence while watching her. She does not move. He sighs, shifts his case to his right hand, and smiles. 

“Think it over. There’s no rush.” He tips his hat to her, bows slightly, and closes the door. He turns on his heel and walks down the street, whistling as he always does. He looks at the buildings, blasted apart and crumbling. He counts the permanent shadows—a man walking here, a woman jogging there; a boy on a bike, a bird on a wire. The neighborhood is different than it was when he first saw it, he thinks, stepping over a hardened ball of melted glass, swinging his case. “Things change with time,” he says out loud as the sun shines on his silver skin. But Arthur Hunicutt Five-Point-Oh does not. The sale goes on. 

  He will try again tomorrow.