Writer - Kyle Hemmings
Across the country, families sat glued to their TVs. It was a historic event. Historic in the sense of never exactly before, like eating chocolate buttercups with cheese dip. Mr. BubbleHead planted the first flag on the planet, Canis Calida, then turned toward the camera and waved through his awkward space suit.
At the NASA control room, a burst of applause erupted, then stopped abruptly. Two engineers stood in front of the video that was real time. “Why he is planting that flag?” the ex-astronaut said, pointing to the letters CHARLIE’S WIENERS DON’T TREAD ON TASTE.
“Because,” said the head NASA technician, Erin Fogg, “his father started the franchise. It’s a kind of family honor thing. And BubbleHead is obsessed with Charlie’s wieners and mocha chip cookies. He lives on them. Like Pluto with those damn hamburgers. It was Pluto, wasn’t it?”
There was an even closer close up shot. The letters were wrapped around a man in a chef’s hat and the man was holding a spatula. The man was actually Mr. BubbleHead’s father and the flag was constructed by Mrs. Emma BubbleHead, who had a hero worship of Betsy Ross as a child. “Someday,” Mrs. Emma BubbleHead said to her son, “you’re going to plant our flag on that faraway planet, Canis Calida. You’ll make this set of rational family members proud.”
After returning to earth, waving to crowds from the back of a limousine, showered with confetti and mocha chips, Mr. BubbleHead was made honorary chairman of Charlie’s Fiddle Fries & Wake Up Wieners. He also invented The Solipsistic Charlie Grill, which not only cooked the wiener, but could change it into one of 64 different shapes, including dogs and grandmothers. The kids loved it.
In his last years, Mr. BubbleHead developed appendicitis and became a hardcore vegan. He resigned from his position at Charlie’s. On a gorgeous summer night, he was found dead face down in his neighbor’s lettuce bed. No charges were pressed for trespassing because Mr. BubbleHead had already crossed a certain boundary.
As for the planet, Canis Calida, its status was later demoted to that of a Grade B star and eventually, like a tummy subjected to long bouts of indigestion, it exploded.
Kyle Hemmings was dropped to earth by an illegal stork then kidnapped by a band of punk rockers who could only play themselves. His latest collection of prose is called Split Brain available on Amazon and there are a lot of Bohemian girls in it who think Kyle is the Bukowski they were written for.