by Liam Scheff
You are an Alien Overlord. You sit in meetings with your fellow Alien Overlords and you manage all the inhabited production planets in the galaxy. You need to produce, to mine for minerals and metals, and to keep the wheels of industry turning.
Your job is to take clean, green functional planets of happy creatures and turn them into slaves to work in your meaningless industries, to produce plastic crap and churn out drugs and pollution and misery.
You are terraformers, and you need to turn fertile, wet, warm planets into hot, dry, sulfuric cauldrons to serve as mining operations for the sale of goods on the intergalactic market.
You’re not at the bottom rung, you’ve risen in the ranks, you’ve worked hard to poison planets, but you’ve always been a 2nd or third in command. You’ve learned to manipulate the psyche of sentient species all over the galaxy. And you’ve been noticed by your supervisor overlords for your excellent work in manipulating and undermining entire species. it’s paid off. Now you are being given your first big assignment.
You have been given a planet of talking pink monkeys to rule over. This is the assignment that was handed to you, now you have to manage these little creatures. They are funny creatures, walking upright, laughing, joking, eating, picking food. They seem to live for amusement and frivolity. How will you ever get these silly animals to do become dutiful slaves to the empire?
You observe them carefully, and begin to note their personalities. They have a few over-riding, consistent characteristics. One – they eat regularly; two, they sleep regularly; three, they like to play, share, and laugh, and finally, above all, they like to touch. They particularly like to touch and rub each others’ backs, arms, necks, feet, hands, to hold hands to lie all over each other, to cuddle and canoodle, in groups of two, three, four, five or more.
They call this “love-touch.” And they, well, they love it. It is their absolute favorite hobby, past-time and daily, nightly and hourly activity. With one exception.
They like to do one other thing with particular relish. They like – and how to put this delicately. Well, there is no way. They like to … uhm. With their…uhm…
More than simple “love-touch,” they like. to…oh, it’s so indelicate and offends your Alien Overlord sensibilities so…
There’s no way to say it but this: they like to lick, suck, suckle, slurp, kiss, rub, squeeze, pump, thrust – in every possible combination. They like to hump, screw, penetrate, be penetrated, twist, turn, play the round the world, in fields, haylofts, beds, on rooftops, in their houses, on boats, on rafts, in tents, under the moon, the sun, in the wind and rain – they like… ahem. TO… well. They love the many methods and of genital and intragenital massage. IN fact, it seemed that the more genitals, sometimes, the better. In, again, groups of two, three..four…five… it seems they are very creative.
This is a kind of love-touch, but it’s wetter and ends with a great sigh of profound relief on all of their parts, as though they’re happier than any creature in the universe has a right to be (in your Alien Overlord’s opinion).
You’d think that they’d perform love-touch with only monkeys they’ve known for years, maybe decades – but, no! They seem willing – and perfectly happy to – perform love-touch with new monkey friends as well as old. IN fact, they delight in expanding their circle of love-touch friends, and including new monkeys in the loving. (How unnerving and upsetting this is for you, as an Alien slave-master!)
The act of love-touch, of any sort, seems to bond them; make them feel deeply happy and harmonious, and sets them with a feeling of ease and vigor, calm and capability.
But why is this happening? You decide to investigate. You send a mosquito probe to steal a sample of blood after one has had some happy love-touch. Under your microscope you find that their bodies are veritable natural pharmacies; producing a host of healing chemicals that are otherwise hard to get – just by touching, kissing, playing, rubbing, and … yes. all that sucking, slurping, screwing and canoodling, too.
You realize: These chemicals are standing in your way:
Dopamine – the accomplishment chemical.
Oxytocin – the loving, soothing, bonding chemical.
Serotonin – the happiness chemical.
Endorphins – the healing chemical.
They make all of these in their own bodies.
How will you ever get this planet of talking monkeys to be your work slaves if all they have to do to feel all of this healing joy is to… well. uhm. You know. Do it. All of the above! (Touch, love, kiss, cuddle) and to do it freely?
You go to sleep, you’re restless. You turn and toss and don’t sleep. Then in the burning hours of blackest morning under the Alien Overlord triple midnight sun – the answer comes to you…
You don’t have to beat them. You don’t have to bribe them. You don’t have to do anything at all. No, you’ll get them to do it all for you. You’ll get them to take away their best quality themselves.
And when their love-touch is gone, they will have to seek every other method available to try to produce even a little tiny fragment of the healing chemicals they used to produce by loving. You will find a way to get them to reject it themselves! Pure genius! But how? You’ll have to be subtle. They are so in love with their loving. How will you take it away from them?
You devise a plan. You develop a thought-worm in your laboratory. Using your Alien Overlord dream-interruption device, you wirelessly insert this thought-worm into the minds of a few of their leaders. The thought-worm is a repeating pattern of word pictures and ideas that expresses itself inside the thinker’s head as though they thought it themselves. It unfurls as a notion. And the notion you programmed will tell them that loving is… Well, you can’t outrightly forbid it. They’ll fracture! They’ll crack! They’ll rebel! And you’ll fail in your mission of enslavement.
You can’t entirely forbid it. You just have to make it… less appealing. No. That won’t do. Less appealing isn’t a strong enough deterrent for something that is infinitely rewarding! No, the love-touch has to become something they actively shun.
You’ll have to make it…ah-ha. Frightful. Upsetting. And…terrifying. Shameful.
And that’s precisely what you do. Marveling at your own dark genius, you programmed their leaders, and many of the important talking monkeys worldwide, to explain to the masses that there is something called an “afterworld.”
It’s not enough to live here and enjoy it anymore. No! The thoughtworm says: “we can’t live for today! We must live for another time! Not even in this lifetime! We must live for the next one! It will be glorious! No pain! No want! No need unfulfilled!”?
And everyone will want to get into this afterworld, free of all conflict and struggle. It is there – not here on the planet – that you will achieve…And what will you call it? Solace? No. Serotonin? No! What about…salvation? Yes!
In order to achieve “salvation” in the afterworld…and here is where you make your move…they will have to avoid sex.
But you can’t call it ‘sex.’ You need a new word. Something that will find a little crack in their brains and wriggle in, and spawn. A word that means something new and fearful to every one of the talking monkey people. Something like…
At last. You’ve done it. And you put the program into motion. From the top down, the notion of happy sensual loving touch is replaced, bit by bit, by the notion of “sin.”
And the monkeys are confounded. Confused.
The thoughtworm has instructed them that if they even think – THINK – of having loving touch with any other monkey, ever – they are Damned. Sinners. Fallen. Whores! Sluts! Slatterns! Despicable! Hated. And worthless. Worth only being shunned and despised. Excommunicated and Ostracized!
And they begin to act neurotically. They reach for touch, and recoil in terror. They want to heal. But they’re sure that their very impulse to love is, in fact, damnation of their eternal soul.
Your plan is working perfectly. Now you spring the trap.
The thought-worm is implanted again, with a new wrinkle: Loving touch will be allowed! (You watch them breathe a sigh of relief.) But only under certain conditions! (You watch them huddle in fear.)
No longer will it be freely given and shared among monkey friends… no, no, no! That could never be permitted! Love-touch among friends equals Shame and Scandal! Love-touch must be strictly monitored and controlled. But by whom?
And here is the singular brilliance of your master plan.
In order to have loving touch, each talking monkey is made to imagine that there is, hidden among all of the millions of monkeys, one and only one other with whom they will ever be permitted to express love-touch with. Yes, you will get them to believe that love-touch is something rare! Even though it’s right in front of them all of the time – they will forbid themselves from healing! From loving!
The plan unfurls. The thoughtworms descend and wriggle thought. The happy monkeys who used to frolic and play and heal with touch and love, are now cowering and even reacting violently to affection, marked by the eyes of all of the monkeys around them, who are all watching each other – spies in their own homes and neighborhoods – to make sure no one ever has loving touch with anyone but the one they have pledged themselves to – and then only with the approval of the leaders in pink monkey churches and pink monkey government who grant promissory binding certificates for each petitioning pair, which they cannot violate without hatred, fear and shame, and loss of property and things!
This is so evilly brilliant, you can’t stand it! You can’t wait to tell your superiors! But you’re not done yet…
Even this small allowance won’t go unperturbed. Love-touch at home will also be considered a bit sinful. Yes! You’ll even shame them when they do it in small doses! The thought-worm wriggles and tells them: Love-touch is something you CAN do – but it’s always going to be a bit ‘dirty.’ And if you do it too much or talk about it loudly, everyone will know that you are dirty and gossip about you, and hate you and shame you.
And it takes hold planet-wide. Where love-touch and cuddling groups used to exist, now gossip clutches spring up, everyone worrying that soon they’ll be marked by loose talk and slander. Every little monkey is now afraid.
You have made them all forget that love-touch is actually healing. That their minds are natural pharmacies that produce those energizing, nurturing molecules that their bodies require.
You watch them fall under the spell. They stumble. They flail. Their minds thump with fantasies of loving touch – as their bodies try to return to their natural state. But now, their programmed minds consider their own natural impulses to be ‘base,’ ‘frightening’ and ‘animalistic.’
They turn to excessive labor, marathon running, and this strange industry of media – the business of a few monkeys putting naked photos and movies of themselves out for everyone to secretly look at, delivered in brown paper wrappers and on internet video sites late at night – to satisfy their built-in need to be whole and to love.
The once happy talking monkeys now spend every day looking for something – anything – to fill a mysterious void gnawing through their souls and guts. They stuff themselves with drugs. Anti-depressants. Television. Sugar. Junk food. Alcohol. Romance novels. Gossip rags. Video games. Warfare. Violence. Even rape. But nothing works.
Without lifting a whip or a finger, you have enslaved them. Now they work for you, toiling in industry to make plastic while destroying their once-beautiful home world. And all you had to do was to make them afraid of their own magic. Which you did, so effectively. They do your work for you: they spy on, hunt and destroy themselves, while you benefit from their labor.
Well done, Alien overlord. Well done! This dirty little planet and all its talking monkeys are yours for the taking.
This essay is from The New Book by Liam Scheff, Deep.Sex.Talk. due Valentine’s Day, 2016.
Liam Scheff is author of “Official Stories” and other books. Please support his unique work by buying a Book or Ebook.
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