Bewildering Stories

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Spirit of the Game

by Steven L. Shrewsbury

“Morality is herd instinct in the individual.” — Friederich Nietszche, 1882

“Mr. President,” a flaxen-haired reporter addressed the large man to her left as she made certain the camera shot was tight. “What’s your opinion of these opening festivities of the 2060 Olympics?”

The gruff voice of the American President, Trevor Cane, Texas native, replied, “Well, hon, I’m glad to see the summer games in London.” Adjusting the lapels of his dark suit, Cane gestured a meaty palm at the British athletes bringing up the rear in the parade of nations. “They always have stood with America best. Though the food isn’t my flavor, it beats what they serve in France.”

“Yes sir,” she said politely, but her lips curled at him, a move not seen on camera. “I was wondering what your attitude was concerning the opening ceremonies themselves?”

Cane imparted a sly look. “Oh sweety, I know what you’re getting at. When my forefather carped about the 2002 games in Utah, how the indigenous tribes were allowed to dance and pray to their gods on national television, he was crucified in the media.”

“But he said...” she started but was cut short.

“All Travis Cane said back then was that the display was a bit extreme and you all in the press made him into a racist for not toeing the line of Political Correctness. God forbid, he said what was on his mind. If you were all about truth and fairness, you would respect every opinion, not just those that differ from your own. If I were a paranoid fella, I’d think you had an agenda in the media by pushing that issue so.”

The lights went down in the stadium and several people holding huge torches ran out to the center of the stadium. A hush settled on the crowd as the sound of thudding feet began.

Pressing on, the reporter said, “But after so many years, the balance of understanding has increased. Political correctness, as you put it, is—”

Again, Cane snipped her, saying, “Political correctness is now mandated, dear, and you can quote me on that. Individual thought is peachy as long as you believe what the pack does. Makes me feel freer, let me tell you.”

As the opening ceremonies climaxed, thousands of individuals jogged into the stadium. The reporter crossed her legs and inquired, “So you are against all aboriginal tribes of host nations performing at such proceedings?”

Cane sighed, beholding the rows of huge hirsute men with black hair assemble in the northern end of the stadium. Their weapons glinted from the torchlight. “Naw, hon, I never said that. I’m all for balance. Glad to see the C.P.A. here in the United Kingdom has made damn sure balance will be done.”

In the southern sector of the stadium, a legion of tall, blonde men with heavy beards waved spears and iron swords. They performed no dance, sang no songs and the only god they called on was in their charging cry of “FEY!”

The crowd waved fluorescent rope and performed the “wave” as thousands of warriors ran together. Electric lights surged and the video screens provided close up shots. Sounds of iron on steel reverberated in the stadium, punctuated by squelching notes of flesh separating from bone.

Non-plussed by the display, the reporter asked the American President, “We are glad the C.P.A. could be here today.”

Limbs flew, heads rolled and blood painted the sand. “The Celt-Pict Appreciation society lucked out, huh? Yes, I’m delighted the Olympic committee could ship in the sand from Libya as part of the world community outreach effort. That grain of sand is extra absorbent.”

When the Celtic warriors vanquished the dark haired Picts, they shouted another cry to the goddess of war FEY, then advanced on the Swedish swim team standing in the first row of athletes. Under the screeching din exuded from the next act, one of mass sodomy, the reporter questioned blithely, “So, you still don’t appreciate political correctness?”

Cane shrugged and then nodded at his teenage daughter behind them. The horrified girl gaped at the spectacle in silence. “I appreciate that my daughter didn’t get the front-row seat like she wanted.”

The reporter looked away and Cane settled back. His daughter gripped his shoulder as he watched the display before him, put on and approved by the civilized tribe of Mankind.

Copyright © 2003 by Steven L. Shrewsbury

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