More about the autor

Midday Matinee – Tuesday’s Tale: Ancient Carnaubans

February 5, 2013

Midday Matinee

Midday Matinee – Tuesday’s Tale: Ancient Carnaubans

“From the dawn of our species to the drafting of the Declaration of Independence, was human development steered by wax figurines?” Nora asked in a breathlessly dramatic tone. She looked around the room. “C’mon, admit it. It has potential.” (More)

Midday Matinee is our people watching, people doing and people being feature. Join the Woodland Creatures for an afternoon break.

Welcome back to Tuesday’s Tale, a weekly feature where we collaborate to write a story. Previous Tuesday’s Tales include The Meeting Society Meeting and Paranoiburg. We follow the basic rules of the “Yes, And” improvisational game – accept everything written so far as part of the story, and add your own paragraph (or so) where the last addition left off – except you needn’t begin your addition with “Yes, and.” I’ll start the story….


“It has the potential to make us look like idiots,” Wanda agreed. “I’m not going to write complete crap.”

“Compared to what?” Nora asked. “Have you seen what else is on cable TV?”

“Nora has a point,” Ed agreed. “As executive producer of Metareality Productions Limited, I gotta be honest. If we get any more … limited … we’ll be out of business.”

“And you weren’t so picky about the script for Cannibal Anorexics,” Dave added, looking at Wanda.

Wanda shrugged. “Okay. I’m not going to write complete crap again.”

“But this isn’t complete crap,” Nora insisted. “Look, all we need is three or four bizarre looking guys – ”

“We can find those in the break room,” Ed interjected.

” – who are willing to spout theories about humans and wax figures,” Nora continued. “Think about it. Carnauba wax is biodegradable.”

“So?” Wanda asked.

Nora sighed. “So … that means we don’t have to explain why our ancient carnauba theorists have no real evidence. The wax figurines decayed!”

“What are we talking here?” Dave asked. “Voodoo dolls?”

“Yes, we could work that in,” Nora said, shifting back into her narrator timbre. “But the best evidence may be halfway around the world, in the practice of voodoo….”


Have fun!

  • winterbanyan

    “O. M. G.” Dave spoke the initials singly, separated by a perceptible pause. He was the only one in the room who had taken internet-speak to its ultimate conclusion: wrecking the English language. “W.T.F. are we selling here? History or wax? Or voodoo? And if you tell me the answer can be found halfway around the world, I know another production company you can write for.”

    “But Carnauba comes from halfway around the world,” Nora retorted.

    “Doesn’t mean the answer to what we’re selling is there,” Dave retorted.

    “Cow patties,” Wanda announced. “Carnauba-waxed cow patties.”

    “Hold it,” Nora said. “We need to mention the ancient Carnaubans. The sponsor insists. You know, the ones from Zeta whatever. Or was it Sirius B?”

    “Get serious,” Ed argued.

  • addisnana

    “Actually,” said Wanda, “Brazil is the sole source for carnuba wax. It’s not halfway around the world but it is far enough away and exotic enough to work as a locale. Voodoo is from west African and a religion. I think we should leave religion alone and go with either zombies or mythical creatures.”

    Ed sighed. “Wanda, we are Metareality Productions Limited not Facts-on-the- Run Productions Unlimited. We cater to conspiracy theorists and gullible viewers who have more than enough realty in their everyday lives. They are looking for an escape.”

    Nora said, “That’s rich. Conspiracy theorists who have more than enough reality in their daily lives. Hello Ed. Hello, earth to Ed. Come in.”

    “How about this,” said Dave. “We take on zombies by creating and painting wax figures that are in terrifying postures. We ‘create’ a story for each and the civilization they represent. As we tell the story they melt in front of our eyes.”

  • Jim W

    “Can we visit Madame Tussaud for inspiration?” Ed asked.

  • NCrissieB

    Nora nodded and again adopted her narrator’s voice. “Is it possible that myths about vampires, werewolves, and other shape-shifting monsters were inspired by these ancient Carnaubans? If so, were they trying to warn us about many of the changes we see happening today?”

    “I like it,” Dave agreed. “Then we cut to a scene of that politician who talked about family values until the cops caught him asking a stripper to put on his diapers in a men’s room by the Reflecting Pool.”

    “I think that’s three guys,” Ed said.

    “Actually I think that’s most guys,” Wanda said. “Meta-realistically speaking.”

    “The point is,” Nora insisted, “people change. They seem like one thing and next thing you know it’s invasion of the snotty batches.”

    “You mean Invasion of the Body Snatchers?” Wanda asked.

    “Them too,” Nora said. “But I was thinking of when Dave took that cold medicine and almost chewed through the camera while we were filming Haunted Taxis of New York.”

    • addisnana

      Dave said, “If we’re going with politicians, let’s work in the reincarnation. I’d love to see a snarling John McCain in carnuba. We would of course say that this is an ancient Irish carnuban who only resembles his later incarnation. We could say something like, ‘Anger management issues are typical of the carnubans and the heat of their passions is one reason that they have all melted.'”

      Wanda added, “Or melted down to be metacorrect about it.”

  • NCrissieB

    “Ooh,” Nora said, narrating once again. “Is it possible that Arizona Senator John McCain is one of the ancient Carnaubans? If so, why didn’t he melt with the rest? The most compelling evidence may be halfway around the world….”

    Dave shook his head. “We can’t make fun of a guy’s war record.”

    “I was thinking of that town in Russia where the people live to be over a hundred because they eat yogurt,” Nora said.

    “You’ve lost me,” Wanda said.

    “No, I get it,” Ed said. “A product tie-in, right?”

    “Exactly,” Nora agreed.

    “In that case, why not Tic Tacs?” Wanda asked. “They’re basically flavored carnauba wax.”

    “Puh-leeze,” Dave said. “How is anyone supposed to bounce John McCain on the end of a pencil?”