Why the Coyote Doesn’t Just Order Chinese

by Phill Provance

No money. That Coyote’s a survivalist. He converted all his currency into precious metals and Swiss Army knives back in ‘08. The setting is obviously New Jersey. Obviously the bomb has already dropped. Obviously, the laws of physics no longer apply. The Coyote, in fact, is not a Coyote but a man, and all the Acme shit and the Road Runner himself are just figments of his imagination. Really, his name is Bob. He’s the lone survivor of a nuclear war. He whips his body wildly at an imagined bird, imagining himself an equally small canine. It’s ridiculous, he knows. But what else is there to do when you are a meter underground and the last of your kind? You might as well dream big or go home.

So he dreams of explosions. He dreams of contraptions. He dreams in technicolor, deep in his underground bunker. He’s about 70 or so—maybe 80 max. His hundred-thousand C-Rations and cans of peas have long since been opened and their contents devoured alone so that their containers litter his safe cave like so many empty bombshells. Two weeks ago, he ate the last tin of Viennese Wieners, the very last food left after 40 years. Now, he is starving—listen:

That is the sound of him starving. But in his dreams he’s getting closer. Each dream he thinks of falling off a cliff. He is getting there, and each time it happens, he arises perfect, whole, finally unscathed, ready to assemble the cogs, gears and pulleys that are the next mechanism of tomorrow.

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