Short Story Competition – Second Place: The Fight Against Kilimani Eminence

THIS IS A PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT FROM THE FEDERAL INVESTIGATIVE LIASON OF TRANSNATIONAL HEALTH (FILTH): PLEASE WASH THE MUGS.

 It’s a common thing really, leaving your dishes out for the night. “Ah, fuck it,” you think. “I’ll get it in the morning.” Except that when morning comes, you’re still a bit hungover and so you’ve missed your alarm. Those mugs still need to be washed, but when you get home that night and look at the stack of dishes in the sink, you resign yourself to a microwave dinner. Once the stench from fetid, standing water gets bad enough, the miniscule desire to clean that existed in the first place flies out the window, along with the flies. Now it’s too gross. You suffer from short-term amnesia: How did it get so bad? Who could have let this happen? What is that noise I hear? Why am I not wearing pants?

There is an evolutionary reason as to why humans must clean their surroundings (and wear pants), why we must purge the defiled and unsanitary from our midst – we cannot afford another Kilimani invasion. We remember the creatures only as shadows, figments, or spectres from our past. Their crimson exterior, formed from month-old tomatoes, are the “demons” that we’ve internalized and created entire faiths around in our prehistory. Historically, it was the appearance of the Kilimani that created the need for civilization in the first place – a sort of pact with the gods for eternal salvation. They have shaped our entire existence and given every surviving human a case of PTMD (Post-Traumatic Mess Disorder). Lest we remember what our psyche has forced us to repress, we run the risk of bringing them back. Cleanliness is next to Godliness for a reason; filth is where the Devil dwells.

In August of 2014, researchers and scholars from our Lost Indigenous Earthenware Squad unearthed a stone tablet, hidden away at the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro, which depicts a great battle. One group, who have been identified by our team of scholars as the “Kilimani,” are depicted emerging from a heap of dead bodies and rotting food, while the opposing group appears to consist of nomadic hunter-gatherers, called the “Jaro,” who are arming themselves with early forms of sponges, brooms, and Lysol. The tablet presents multiple scenes, ranging from the initial invasion, to the coming of three great warriors out of the pantry (described merely as “7 minutes in heaven”), to the defeat of the invaders at the broom-wielding hands of the Jaro warriors. After the battle, the Jaro are seen to offer the Kilimani up as a sacrifice to afro-donning deities, codenamed JIMI. The people make a pact and the gods make love; to prevent another invasion, the Jaro will spend the rest of their days on this holy ground, devoting their life to the creation of soap. While the historical accuracy of this tablet has yet to be entirely confirmed by outside sources, and some have even claimed that the piece seems to be more akin to a child’s doodle rather than an ancient work of art, the importance of this relic to the history of humanity cannot be ignored.

All in all, the Kilimani have been proven (by our scholars, not theirs) to be the third leading killer in human history, behind only Religion (#1) and White Men (#2). For the last millennia, we have done well to protect ourselves against the foe. Thankfully, different warriors have emerged throughout the ages to keep up the fight, such as infirmaries, sewers, and Mr. Clean. Now, however, our global society is facing the threat of another invasion, this time brought on by our own apathy towards sanitation. As the world gets wealthier, the egotism of our “invincibility” grows along with our susceptibility. Total areas of the world devoted to garbage and waste rival that of a small country, and recently “trash demons” were spotted at the Sudokwon Landfill in South Korea (Jong-un, 2013). If Sudokwon comes under the control of the Kilimani, humanity will face its greatest threat yet (besides other humans, of course).

Therefore, we urge you to please follow these five, simple steps in your home to help combat the oncoming storm:

  1. Clean your dishes right away. No one wants to see your half-drunk café con leche from four days ago sitting atop an overflowing microwave. We know that it’s hard to get around to it when there’s a new “Orange is the New Black” on, but if you think Piper has it bad, wait until you’re in a Kilimani jail. Our recommendation: listen to the life lessons your mother has been trying to impart upon you for as long as you can remember, namely “Pick up your shit.” The Jaro didn’t devote their lives to making soap just so you could drop it in a prison shower.
  2. Take only what you need. Which option will produce less trash: (A) One slice of pizza or (B) The entire box of pizza, which you can’t finish? If you chose option A, we congratulate you. Next time, try using ingredients from your garden to make it homemade. They will be healthier, more sustainable, and you can finally show your parents how adult you are. If you chose option B, skip to Step 5.
  3. Stop pretending like nothing you do matters in the grand scheme of things. Three Jaro warriors saved humanity millennia ago, equipped merely with brooms and a righteous cause. What’s your excuse? Our recommendation: realize that you are the product of an infinite number of possibilities that have culminated into the survival of one specific sperm cell coupled with one specific egg until the present moment. Appreciate it.
  4. Arm yourself. In the event that the Kilimani do rise up, you will need to be prepared. Essential accouterment to the revolution will be AK-47s, colored bandanas, and bomb shelters. Remember, isolation is the key to survival; look at Atlantis – no one even knows where it is it’s so well prepared for the Kilimani’s return. Our recommendation: visit Compton, CA, or the Gaza Strip to stock up on all the latest supplies for urban warfare. There you’ll be sure to find such useful items as a power hegemony, prejudice, and segregation.
  5. Kill yourself. If you’re dead, you are automatically making less trash than someone who is living, and even if the Kilimani still invade, you won’t be around to experience it. Our recommendation: find somewhere isolated in nature to do the deed. Head out into the middle of the desert, ocean, or woods with a fifth of Jack Daniels and a full-blown case of self-loathing. Be sure to finish the bottle as quickly as you can in order to achieve the full, desired effect.

If you would like more information on the importance of hygiene and sanitation for the survival of the human race, please contact General Information for Vehement Existential Upsets and Problems at +1-666-FUTILITY (International).

This message has been brought to you by FILTH and paid for by the Fight Against Kilimani Eminence. Please wash the mugs.

By C. G. Huff

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