The Short Humour Site

Home : Writers' Showcase : Submission Guidelines : A Man of a Few More Words : Links

Writers' Showcase

The Die Hard
by April Winters

My neighbor calls himself an idea man. Folks here say Donnie’s ideas aren’t worth a watered down ice cube; and if he bends over, his brains will rush to his head.

His most recent idea was for the only drive-thru funeral business in Littleburgh. “Just think: no more hassles with a traditional service. John Doe won’t care – he’ll be dead! Customers drive up to a window, punch a code, and a curtain opens showcasing the dearly departed. Is that convenient or what?”

Donnie had a TV ad made emphasizing the fact that busy families could “wave bye-bye to Granny and be off to the local amusement park in a matter of minutes.”

A journalist decided to experience The Drive Bye firsthand. After punching in a random code, he viewed some dead old lady and declared it was the freakiest thing he’d ever seen. The nationwide media blitz that followed brought tourists galore. Every business in town turned a profit. The people who used to call Donnie a flake said he was a genius.

Unfortunately as fewer tourists sat in line to stare at dead strangers, profits dwindled. Donnie resorted to gimmicks; but honestly, how many people want fries with their viewings?

The main complaint was visibility, so Donnie rigged a hydraulic system that stood the coffins on end. Everyone was happy. Then Prissy Jenkins pitched out of her casket, shot through the drive-thru window, and ended up with her face in her bereaved husband’s lap. Donnie looked outside and saw Ed Jenkins kick the proverbial bucket. He also saw The Daily Scoop’s reporter – snoop Myrtle Wisenheimer – snap pictures of the incident. Excedrin headache #532 hit Donnie like a sledgehammer; he dashed to the first aid kit, grabbed the medication and munched a bunch like M&Ms.  

The next morning, he saw the grotesque photo on the front page: about a hundred pounds of Prissy draped inside Ed’s Dodge Ram and the other hundred or so still inside The Drive Bye. Donnie said that shouldn’t have been a Kodak moment.

The next day, he told me, “Whoever said any publicity is better than none was on meth. One measly airborne cadaver and I’ve gone from champ to chump, just like that. When I walked to the store this morning, everybody either crossed the street or pretended I was invisible.”

I told him to hang in there, but Donnie was devastated. Yesterday he permanently shut down The Drive Bye and wondered aloud why he was doomed to a life filled with such rotten luck. Head in hands, he said, “I’m tired of being a failure. I have all these money-making ideas spinning in my head; why don’t they turn out right?”

Not wanting him to commit Hari Kari, I gave him Pep Talk 101.

Encouraged, he said, “I had an awesome dream last night; if you’d float me a loan, I could … ”

You’re nice to somebody and the next thing you know, they’re sticking their hand out. Where’s my damned Excedrin bottle?