no. 22

Kelly Lynn Jones, The Exquisite Book

The True Story of Edmond, Oklahoma

There is a very small town in Oklahoma called Edmond that is occupied entirely by retired mechanical engineers and their curly-haired children. For a long time, many people assumed that Edmond was a myth. They would hear about it from their milk men during their massages.

Every milk man knew someone who’d heard someone who had been to Edmond but they are notorious gossips and grapefruit juice lovers. It is, understandably, difficult to believe someone who loves grapefruit juice out of all the fruit juice in the citrus kingdom.

Take it from me, however, Edmond is not a myth. It is very much a real place threatened only by what threatens us all — massive golf course expansion and the closing of the Western frontier.

The mechanical engineers (all of whom had straight hair), their spouses, and their curly-haired children lived life much as you do. In fact, they watched you for years just learning how to get it right and now live almost exactly as you. Please do not think this is creepy, though. This is simply how engineers express themselves.

They had come about in the fair oasis of Edmond by a combination of a strange wind currents and presidential decree. Once settled, they developed their own quiet ways of life, various machines to pick up and drop off their children at school, and a gigantic steam-powered calendar that was placed in the center of their impeccably planned town.

A crystal was in the heart of the calendar, it was engineered such that on the anniversary of the death of Grog, the first mechanical engineer (he is, of course, only famous to the practitioners of the field), a giant beam of light hits a diamond the size of a milk man’s fists and shoots a rainbow into the chest of the nearest curly-headed child.

This is part of The Exquisite Corpse, a daily writing challenge.

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