Family Meeting Announcing My Recently Published Submission

Gather ’round! Tim Cushing has finally been published on the internet.

I’d like to thank you all for coming here on such short notice. I’m aware that many of you had unfinished business elsewhere, especially those of you whose supervisors were left in the lurch by your sudden disappearance.

Photo by melisdramaticFirst of all, I’d like to clear the air: Uncle Chet has not passed away, as many of you might have expected due to his recent health problems or the subject line of my email. He is in fact alive and well, despite having been dragged out of bypass surgery prep earlier today.

No, this meeting is to draw your attention to my recent publication in a Major Online Publication.

I’m sorry. This hand gesture indicates “air capitalization.” I’m trying to emphasize the importance of this journal, which is much harder to do verbally without excessive facial expressions and/or inadvertent spitting.

Alice, I can already hear your unasked question and no, it’s not the local newspaper’s police blotter. Those days are behind us, and I was hoping that we all could get through a family event without mention of my sordid past. No, it’s not a Craigslist personal either. Thanks, Jeanne, for bringing that up.

This major online humor journal has selected my piece to run today, and I’d like for all of you to read it. Yes, I’m sure many of you have never heard of it, but let me assure you, it is a Major Online Publication.

That’s right. That means “air caps.”

Your previous unawareness of its existence has little bearing on its renown and respectability. You’re not the most up-to-date people I know. I’ve floated meme after meme in your general direction and received nothing but blank looks and offers of prayer from you. That Rick Roll I attached to Grandma’s funeral announcement was priceless, but all I got were tears of incomprehension. Oh, and a death threat from Todd, but who here hasn’t? Todd, put your hand down.

The LOLCAT commemorating Jack’s divorce? “I CAN HAZ SUPERVISED VISITATION?” Come on! A LOLCAT! Even Chet’s heard of those! And let’s not forget Chad’s intervention via ChatRoulette. I thought that went extremely well despite your insistence that random genitalia are not part of the healing process.

Look, you can downplay this all you want, but the internet is where all the publishing action is these days. Print is dead. The only people still selling books are Rowling and Patterson. And as for the late, great magazine industry? It’s down to teen heartthrob magazines and the Smithsonian, both of which do little more than add an illusory level of “coolness” or “smartness” to the reader This is the future, and you really need to start embracing it in the co-dependent way that I have.

Chet, I specifically requested your presence as you’ve dodged all other invitations to read my published work. The assertion that you “don’t get the internet where you live” won’t fly this time. I’ve got plenty of internet here and I’d like you to go first.

And Carmen, I know you’ve said repeatedly in the past that you just don’t “get” my humor. I know some of my other pieces have been a little too conceptual, but this one is squarely “everyman.”

Basically, it’s Jean Paul Sartre trapped on an intercontinental flight, bemoaning existence and the food selections while interacting with a stewardess who has been victimized by various gender constructs and bad relationships her whole life. There’s a lot of projection from both parties as they discuss the entree choices. All of this is delivered via highly technical Tweets from the sentient on-board computer which take the form of a Top 10 list.

I’m telling you, Carmen, if you don’t “get” this one then I sincerely doubt you know Art Buchwald’s body of work quite as well as you think you do.

Now, I’ve got it open on the computer in the den. I’d like for each of you to take a turn reading it. When you’re done, please fill out one of the comment cards I’ve printed up. Be sure to indicate which line(s) was your favorite. This will be completely anonymous so be candid. I’m especially curious to hear which line(s) you thought were the best.

No, those were “air parentheses.” The “air caps” look like this. Go ahead and use that whenever. But not the “air caps.” I’m patenting that in case this whole writing thing doesn’t pan out.


Photo by melisdramatic

Tim Cushing considers himself a domestic humor writer, saving the more continental "humour" for trips abroad. He also blogs. Because why not. Friends and family remain "awkwardly unamused."