Victor Padula Fables for a Degenerate Culture: The Witch's Standards

Fables have long been a part of our collective heritage. In prehistoric times, fables were simple tales based on little more than the fact that people found the notion of a talking coyote to be fucking hilarious. As human societies grew and became more complex, so did the talking coyote stories. By the time the greeks rolled around, humans had figured out that they could make up stories about all kinds of talking animals. Also, people were realizing that the subjects explored in these stories could quite easily deviate from the traditional discussions about the weather and persistent lower back pain.

Some really ambitious storytellers even decided that their fables should actually have a point. Since that time, fables have been the vehicle by which wise men share their insights with the masses. Without the fable we would have no idea how to deal with trolls, thorns in paws, and all of the other practical, real-life scenarios that they prepare us for. Unfortunately the kids today just don’t seem to have the time for fables. It’s not just that they’re too busy, it’s that they don’t relate.

The problem is that the fables that we’re used to were written for a bygone era. No longer is it necessary to educate the people about thing such as honesty, nobility, or how much to compensate the orphanage when the mangy street rat they sent over died of creosote-related asphyxiation. That’s why we need new fables. Fables that reflect our contemporary values, dreams and aspirations.

The Witch's Standards:

It is said that in the black forests of the north country there lives a mighty witch. The witch was known throughout the land, not just for her immense power, but also her great beauty. A lesser reputation proceeded her with regards to her line of gourmet salad dressings, which all agreed were tasty, although some found that they were somewhat overpriced. In spite of all the Witch’s power and beauty, she was quite lonely. On several occasions she even appeared on local cable talk shows when the episode’s theme was “I’m too hot! Men are scared to approach me.”

For years the Witch languished endlessly, with only occasional breaks for lunch and to take a crap and stuff. One day she decided she was tired of waiting, and set about discovering a spell that would create for her the perfect man. She spent years looking for the right spell in all of the great spell books and many well regarded online message boards. Day after day she spent searching without rest. Every once in awhile she would think that she’d finally discovered the spell she was searching for, but more often than not it would turn out to be yet another one of her old salad dressing recipes. Years passed, and eventually she accepted defeat.

She sat down in a cherry orchard to lament her life of loneliness. Across the orchard she watched two farm hands as they pretended that the cherries were their testicles in a variety of homo-erotic slapstick scenarios. It was then that it donned on her that if she couldn’t make a perfect man, she could, just maybe, make an already existing man perfect for her. And so it came to pass that the Witch developed a severe drinking problem.

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