High and Low

September 7, 2007

Emanuel Broker is a populer comedian, despite not actually knowing how to tell a goddamn joke. A bull of a man, he is over six feet tall and blessed by a unnaturally high and squeaky voice. When he stands on stage and unloads waves of profanity in his little girl voice, the audience explodes into laughter and cheer.

The money is rolling in – which is good, because he has little else going for him. He can’t actually take pride in his work – he wanted to tell jokes, not amuse people through a quirk of genetics! But his routines fall flat, and he knows he’d be nothing without his voice.

He won’t have ever had a girlfriend, since the piercing wail of his speech has inevitably driven every woman away – at least until tonight, when he passes by a lonely young widow while strolling home and practicing (pointlessly) his comedy routine. She’ll hear his voice in wonder, for she has her own quirk – a disability with her hearing that makes it almost impossible for her to understand normal human speech. As she passes him by, she’ll hear his words ringing loud and clear in the lonely night, and he’ll turn to see her gazing at him with sudden and overwhelming love.

But it won’t be a world of instant happiness  for the two of them – she’s the perfect woman for him, save for her pious nature, and hatred of profanity. Their love will be a heartbreaking battle between his desire to make something meaningful of his career, and his one chance at true love. Unable to fully commit to each other, yet unable to break apart, they will be spun in relentless circles for twenty-odd years before finally overcoming their own foolish certainties and pledging each other unconditional love.

For tonight, however, there is only wonder and merriment as kindred spirits meet on the cool blue city streets, and a moment in which two souls are brought together as one by a single, hideously shrill obscenity.

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