AW Flash Fiction — Patriotism — 1/2/11

High above, over a true "home of the brav...

Image by The Library of Congress via Flickr

Don’t even ask me where this piece came from. I totally blanked out on the theme word, so went for as much foolishness as I could muster within the time limit. The ending is all wrong and I’ll try to tweak it later.


If Pa had done his W-4 right in the first place, I wouldn’t be married to a zombie. But he’d got his knickers in a knot when he found out he owed more taxes than what his employer had withheld (as galling as that already was!) That’s when he got the bright idea to create his own country.

The Freedom Apex of Tennessee, or FAT as he called it, was his big solution to Uncle Sam’s “greedy mitts”.

“How hard could it be to create one’s own country?” he asked, then to everyone’s astonishment proceeded to do just that.

They first laughed and thought him a bit boggy in the head until he produced a letter from the United Nations recognizing his little corner of the Appalachian mountains as its own sovereign nation. Still, respect for the UN hadn’t run all that high in his neck of the woods (not to mention an awareness of what the UN even was) so few paid him much mind until he erected a border fence and charged a toll to pass through his lands.

Ma designed and stitched a flag that consisted of a bottle of moonshine (his country’s only export) and an opossum. Pa wrote a national anthem on his Yamaha keyboard that was mostly do-do-do’s and la-la-la’s with no high notes whatsoever cause he’d always hated the Star Spangled Banner.

He appointed himself King and Ma his consort, though when she looked it up, she was none too pleased and thought Queen sounded better. Pa prevailed when he found a romance novel that used the word to describe a sexy vampire’s lady love. Pa wasn’t a vampire but he could do a respectable Frank Langella Dracula imitation and that was good enough for Ma.

When the IRS came to collect their back taxes, he took their names and put them on his terrorist list then refused to admit them to FAT. They laughed and told him that the US government did not recognize any sovereignty within its borders other than those in the Native American treaties.

Not to be outwitted, Pa produced his genealogy tree and discovered blood ties to both the Mohawk and Cherokee tribes. He dubbed his half-breed tribe the Mohkees and sent an official-looking treaty of his own creation to the Bureau of Indian Affairs to sign. The folks at the BIA must have been swamped the day his paperwork came through because somehow, they approved it and sent him a restitution check for $50,000 with a form letter apology.

All might have ended well if he hadnt decided to send a team to the Olympics. With every sport open to him, he cryptically chose bobsledding because by golly if Jamaica could do it, so could FAT! Not surprisingly, he finished in last place cause old Rosebud just wasn’t all that fast. Humiliated at his poor showing, Pa blamed it on his country’s inadequate funding for sports and told Ma he was abdicating the throne and moving to America, specifically Tennessee.

Being the patriot that she was, Ma refused to immigrate with Pa and instead ascended to the throne of FAT as its Queen.

But Pa came back when the IRS came a-knockin’ again for their back taxes. Ma welcomed his return to FAT and back into her bed but as HER consort. Pa was no dummy. He figured being Ma’s love slave was a heck of a lot better than paying the Man.

So all that I’ve described ultimately led to the passing of the throne to the females (by Ma’s royal decree, which pissed my brother off to no end) and to my status as the Princess of FAT. As royalty, I could only marry another blue blood. Once Prince William was off the market, my hopes of making a good match plummeted. But I inherited my patriotism from my Ma and would have rather died the dried up virgin Queen of FAT than sully the bloodline of the Mohkees…that is, until the King himself rose from his tomb in Graceland and swept me off my feet (after I found him a more appropriate snack.)

Everyone knows that marriage requires the occasional compromise but I am happy to announce that patriotism is NOT one of them. Annoying zombie habits aside, we are talking about Elvis after all.