Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Margaret Atwood’s “Happy Endings” put into practice

So, in reading this piece by Margaret Atwood, I realized how much time I’ve wasted reading books when I could have just applied this text to them:

Foucault’s Pendulum by Umberto Eco
On the brink of discovering the true nature of the Knights Templar, Diotallevi discovers that Belbo has been having an affair with the corpse of one of the Templars, his “Object of Desire,” and so they engage in a great swordfight around the Pendulum that ultimately leads to a pistol duel atop a train running through the Swiss Alps in which Belbo revels in his victory until the Templars return to life as zombies and hunt him down for desecrating their bodies. The End.

Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs
Young Lord Greystoke discovers Jane has been running around with D’Arnod and so sets Cheetah on them (yeah, I know Cheetah wasn’t in the book, did you even read my previous entry?) and then escapes back to the jungle to live the rest of his life engaging in his stimulating and challenging hobbies of ant-picking and vine-swinging until he is eventually dethroned by a silverback that crushes his puny human body into the mud.

Ragtime by E. L. Doctorow
Father and Tateh discover that their Little Rascals kids have gone crazy and intend to cut the purse strings. In a mad rage after a fight, Tateh knocks Father out with a frying pan and then gasses him in the stove. After three days of crying over his body – still head-first stuck in the oven – she begins to realize that Houdini was behind it all and hires Harry K. Thaw, recently released from the mental institution, to kill him. Just as the battle of the Harry’s ends with one of them, I don’t really care which, dying, Tateh is rejected by Emma Goldman from the Communist Party and in despair, she kidnaps the Little Rascals and escapes to a dungeon Father had built years earlier. In the dungeon, she commits suicide, but her death helps provide a food source for the Rascals for several days, until they all asphyxiate and die.

Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
Once Jim is freed, he discovers that Tom and Huck have designed a grand plan to play detective before going abroad in a giant balloon. His feelings devastated, he butchers the children with an axe and a lightning rod before going on the run. He is ultimately found and turned in by the King and the Duke who claim the reward. The sheriff, as he’s giving them the reward, recognizes them as the scoundrels that swindled a nearby town and so arrests them as well. Locked in the same cell, Jim beats the pair to death with a piece of iron yanked from the foot of the bed before being shot through the jail bars by the deputy on guard. And Huck’s dad kills everyone else.

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