Fiction Collective Two is an author-run, not-for-profit publisher of artistically adventurous, non-traditional fiction.

An Illuminated History of the Future


An Illuminated History of the Future
Edited by Curtis White

Paperback
1989
Price: $10.95

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"In the stories which follow, the future is no longer merely one of the usual suspects to be rounded up."

New stories from new and established writers; blending the postmodern, the surreal, the cyberpunk, and other uncharted forms. Features stories from R.M. Berry, Gerald Vizenor, Constance Pierce, Don Webb, and many others.


"Dark, disturbing scenarios abound in this arresting collection. Beverly Brown's allegorical 'Gardener' conjures up a threatened and threatening paradise where the menacing overlord, obsessed with his goal of 'parasite control,' brutalizes plants and subordinates rather than nurturing them. Constance Pierce's 'In the Garden of the Sunbelt Arts Preserve' depicts an artists' colony that is a home where no one belongs, certainly not the narrator, who filches a beer with someone else's name on it. And art overruns life in Conger Beasley Jr.'s 'Japan Invades America': Asian performers crawl off a stage 'like a swarm of insects ... wave after ragged wave' and engulf rows of submissive theatergoers. Gerald Vizenor, Edward Kleinschmidt, David Wong Louie and Martha Baer are among the contributors." —Reed Business Information, Inc.


Excerpt


In Thailand: a Prefatory Parable


I was welcomed to Thailand by Coca-Cola: an enormous billboard featuring a popular Thai rock band relaxing with cans of Coke. Later, at the Impala Hotel in Bangkok, I was given a more authentic Thai greeting by mosquitoes. I found one or two, but others were small, silent and smart enough to elude and survive. Silent, that is, until I turned the lights out, at which point they buzzed in with all of the subtlety displayed by Japanese businessmen reaping Thai bath over coffee and cigarettes. When I awoke the next morning, there was a set of bites in the shape of a lotus lead on my pale chest. The bites looked like the perforations on a customs document.

Let me tell you a story. It didn't happen to me while I was in Thailand, but never mind that. I was down in Songkhla staying in a 100 bathroom at the Holland Bar. Fat Dutch guy owned the place. He catered to an upscale gay clientele and their native boys. He owned a VCR and nice color TV but only one tape, a Madonna concert tape live in Italy. (Prince Minister Chatichai ousted ex-Prime Minister Prem on the strength of his commitment to "Material Girl" as the new Thai national anthem.) For my part, I grew to know the muscles in Madonna's arms. By the end of my stay, I was convinced she had fallen for me. I think we could have worked something out, but I was damned busy with the boys. I was straight as a string till I found myself in Thailand. It started out with suck jobs with fellows on the beach. It was all good fun for the boys, although none forgot the service charge. By the end of my stay, I was balling four boys per day, none of them a bit better than they needed to be. It only took two weeks for my disease to depopulate most of southern Thailand even to the Burma mountains that look like angular camels. Only a few woman remained in scattered, stubborn rural pockets, places were JELLO still causes a stir. I was asked to leave and agreed it was probably best for all concerned. New boys are being smuggled back into southern Thailand even to the Burma mountains that look like angular camels. Only a few women remained in scattered, stubborn rural pockets, places where JELLO still causes a stir. I was asked to leave and agreed it was probably best for all concerned. New boys are being smuggled back into southern Thailand in the flat woven baskets traditionally used for growing silkworms. Damndest thing, the boys take on some of the worm's identity in the process, wriggling over each other and lifting themselves to be fed. When I learned of this strategy, my fatigue and distress became extreme because I knew it would all just have to be done again. That's the misery of mastery here in post-imperial, new colonial Thailand, where the tourist is sahib.