Or Else

A fable of when people get everything they want until they choose to pursue only what they need

Philip Siddons
ILLUMINATION
Published in
13 min readSep 22, 2020

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Image: Brian Froud and Allan Lee in Faeries/ Photoshop editing by author

The people in the town of It’sAllAboutMe were a fun-loving folk. They liked themselves and they thought everyone was just like them. They especially liked their possessions. In fact, they loved birthdays when they could spend the whole day with all their new presents. They really liked their stuff.

On their birthdays they would get lots of presents. The fun thing about It’sAllAboutMe birthdays is that everyone would get whatever they wanted. If they wanted a new castle, they got it. If it was the latest toy or a zillion dollars, it was theirs. That’s because in It’sAllAboutMe, it truly was all about me. Since everyone was a Me, people pretty much had it made.

Image: Shaun Tan in The Arrival

In time, people got bored waiting for a birthday because it would only come around once a year. That’s when The Powers That Be invented a new holiday called Thank-Mas-Er. Thank-Mas-Er was observed halfway between one birthday and the next. That meant that the good people of It’sAllAboutMe had two days a year when they could get anything they wanted. They would stay home and enjoy their possessions.

In the passing of time, people grew impatient while waiting half a year for their next gift-getting day. Therefore, The Powers That Be proclaimed that Thank-Mas-Er could be a floating holiday. By a unanimous vote, The Powers declared that a floating holiday could be anytime someone wanted it. Every day, in fact.

The next day, everyone took off work and went to pick out what they wanted for Thank-Mas-Er. Oaf got the castle soon after he saw that Pislee had requested and received a castle of her own.

Image: Brian Froud and Alan Lee in Faeries/ Photoshop editing by author

Pislee went out and got herself a new hot tub.

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Philip Siddons
ILLUMINATION

Working to create egalitarian communities which seek gender, racial & economic justice. medium.com/@psiddons | FlyByNight.us | http://connectedness.org