The World’s Peachiest Boy In the World
Written by Simon Becks
Pipsqueek was a little man,
Somewhat shy, somewhat sheepish, somewhat ‘fraid.
But Pipsqueek knew smart things this man,
He just simply did not like to parade.
Balthazar Dolla’ Bill on the other hand,
had a mouth, as big as a monster-super, mega truck, which left the entire group stupefied, awestruck.
'Grandilloquence! Humdudgeon! Sotto voce!',
bellowed Dolla, shrill. 'Grandiloquence. Shmandiloquence.' muttered Pipqisqueek to himself,
that sounds to me a bit like overkill.'
Flash. FLASH. And a lightbulb appeared.
Pipsqueek grabbed it. Pipsqueek broke it.
Pipsqueek had a murder weapon engineered.
‘I prefer direct communication Dolla’ Bill exclaimed’,
leaving spittle as he spoke.
‘Lets leave feelings at the door, like the stoics for example did…’
Something something artichoke.
Pipsqueek did not listen any more,
to humdudgeons and what not.
'Sotto voce, Sotto voce' whispered he,
as he stabbed Baltahzar Dolla Bill,
Blood and spittle sputter spat
all over the flipper flapper floor,
and little Pipsqueek, peachy Pipsqueek
never heard Baltazar Dolla Bill speaking anymore.
‘Sotto voce, sotto voce’ spoke Pipsqueek meekly.
‘Lets now continue our critiques more respectably
and I’m a little tired so maybe bi-weekly.’
Simon’s story was born out of the time he had the idea of shooting a giraffe in South Africa. There are natural parks there where the rangers will take your money and let you shoot a member of an endangered species, and they will use that money to save more members of that species. Sort of like the old thought experiment about a train heading towards a track with five people tied to it. We have the option to derail the train to the track with just one person tied to it. Do we push the lever?
Simon did not shoot a giraffe in South Africa. He did however think that he could externalise his wish through fictional characters, and this was the genesis for the story of Pipsquak, ‘the peachiest boy in the world’, and Balthazar Dolla’ Bill.
Balthazar wants to talk about his feelings and Pipsqueak, feeling attacked, reacts with murder, so he doesn’t have to express himself. The structure of the story almost frames Pipsqueak as the hero and Balthazar as the villain, when in fact the opposite is true. It is Pipsqueak who commits the heinous act of murder, while Balthazar was just trying to express himself.
While the quieter people are often framed as victims, loud people who take up room are often also in need of communication. Someone who is quiet is not putting themselves out there and is therefore protected, while more expressive people are taking a risk and constantly getting metaphorically punched in the face. As the old Dutch saying goes: ‘The sun is the best way to bleach’.