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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: In-Law(s) (05/08/08)

TITLE: Of In-Laws, Mad Kings, Morty From Jersey, And Mongo The Parrot
By David Ian


First of all, I want to know who made this “law” about in-laws. How did this “rule” about adding whole broods of strangers from strange places into our immediate family circle come about? What legislative body in their right minds crafted a law, then debated and voted for it in order to make it so? And can we impeach these Cretins who did this heinous act? That’s probably what it was called, too: “The Heinous Act”. And how far does this Heinous Act extend, anyways? Can some distant brother in-law’s cousin’s third half-sister still lawfully claim a spot at the Thanksgiving table if they’ve got the proper documentation? Who enforces these laws, anyways? Could you get a visit from the “In-Law Police” if you turn away legitimate legislated distant family?

Or perhaps this whole “in-law” idea was the edict of some mad king drunk with power to make people prefer his iron hand of tyranny over the terror of having strange distant “in laws” drop in on you at unexpected and inopportune times? I wouldn’t doubt it.

“No!” you say. “Please! Rule us with an iron fist, but don’t let aunt in-law Edna suddenly drop in on our quiet Christmas morning with her off-key accordion and puking pet monkey with an infected ear and “Mongo the Parrot” who only knows dirty limericks and bawdy sea shanties! Please! Oppress us! We’d MUCH rather make bricks without straw!”

Correction. Not mad king. Smart king. But we’re left with his clever edict, aren’t we?

In-laws are not Biblical. We are going against the Will of God by acquiescing to this “grafted family” concept. I mean, in Genesis, for crying out loud, it talks about how a man shall LEAVE his father and mother and CLEAVE to his wife. “Leaving and Cleaving” that’s how I read it. A man leaves the parents and family and cleaves to his wife. Period. I see NOTHING in the Bible about getting married and suddenly being obliged to graft into your newly formed family unit whole tribes of brothers and uncles in-laws and quarter cousins by a second marriage named Morty from Jersey with a honking sinus condition. I have scanned the entire Bible from cover to cover and I see NO mention of any obligation to Morty from Jersey with a honking sinus condition. None.

It’s got an exponentially explosive feature, too, if you think about it. The adding of in-laws never ends. Say you’ve got a brother-in-law who then gets married and he is obliged to graft a mother-in-law into his family. Now what does that mean to you? What have you got? A Mother-In-Law Once Removed? Can she be removed any further? And what if this mother in-law has a cousin in-law named Morty from Jersey with a honking sinus condition? And HE’S got an accordion playing aunt in-law Edna with a puking pet monkey? There’s no end to this! Can we get insurance for this kind of thing? Or some kind of “In-Law-B-Gone” spray product with which we can saturate the perimeter of our house? Something?

I wonder if the law that enacted “in-laws” can be repealed? Does it take a “super-majority” to do so? How do we lobby for this sort of thing? Would anyone vote against it? Would any jury in the world convict us if we tarred and feathered someone who did vote against it? Would “defrocked in-laws” in one country still be legitimate in other countries without such progressive in-law repealing legislation? Would we suddenly create vast roving hoards of “in-law refugees”? Would we develop “in-law” ghettos in Third Cousin Countries?

“Hello, I’m Biff Sorensen, spokesman for Missions For In-Laws. For just pennies a day, you can help an in-law who has nowhere to go, no one to drop in on. This is Edna. She used to happily sing bawdy sea shanties with her parrot Mongo. Now, since the Heinous Act has been repealed, she lives in a shanty house made of pressed bits of her off-key accordion. And just a few short days ago, she had to eat her beloved Mongo the Parrot. Won’t you help?”

I don’t think we can do something about this too soon. Morty from Jersey just called, said he’s coming over.

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This article has been read 1011 times
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Sara Harricharan 05/15/08
ROFL! This is simply hilarious! I love the dry humor and particularly your crazy title.

My favorite line was "Correction. Not mad king. Smart king. But we’re left with his clever edict, aren’t we?"

Smart king indeed! Cleverly written and well-delivered. I applaud your creativity! ^_^
nicole wian05/16/08
Hilarious, enjoyable read!
Debbie Wistrom05/16/08
Lovvvved the puking monkey and the sea shanties. This shines with wit and creativity.

Love the sarcasm, and can identify with so many of your points.

I'd like to see a ribbon on this entry!
Gregory Kane05/17/08
What a marvellous hotchpotch of ranting and mad reasoning.
Personally I felt that your pice could have done with being a paragraph or two shorter as by the end I was finding Morty and Mongo a bit tedious – slight case of overkill perhaps.
And in terms of the Buible of course there’s the whole area of levirate marriage (resulting in the scenario put to Jesus about the widow who married seven brothers.) Interestingly it’s also a practice to protect the extended family that is still implemented here in Mozambique where we are currently serving. There are a few monkeys around too but no parrots.
Sylvia Hensel 05/17/08
Really funny story and well written. However, someday when you're an in-law, your outlook will change. Mine did!
Sharlyn Guthrie05/19/08
I love well-done humor, and you nailed it with this. What fun! And it is so outrageous, we couldn't possibly take you seriously...could we? Having met you at last summer's conference, I can even hear you delivering this, and that makes it even better. Hope to see this place. It's excellent!
Jan Ackerson 05/19/08
This one begs to be read aloud as a monologue. You can definitely feel your flair for drama here. Love it--you're so witty!
LauraLee Shaw05/21/08
Oh yes, monologue for SURE! If you'd make a YouTube of it, I'd put it on my Facebook. ;)

Incredible wit and brilliant writing! Well done.
Joshua Janoski05/22/08
“Please! Rule us with an iron fist, but don’t let aunt in-law Edna suddenly drop in on our quiet Christmas morning with her off-key accordion and puking pet monkey with an infected ear and “Mongo the Parrot” who only knows dirty limericks and bawdy sea shanties!"

LOL! Oh man! You had me rolling with this one. So funny, and you had me convinced on several points you made. Your title is awesome too!

One of the funniest I have read this week. Thank you for sharing.
Joanne Sher 05/23/08
Congratulations, D_I, on placing 15th in your level and 40th overall. Great job!
Betsy Markman05/24/08
Oh my. I found the level of sarcasm a bit painful at first, but the descriptions were so hilarious that I decided the sarcasm had to be tongue-in-cheek. I loved the insanity, the vivid images and sounds (HONK), and the unexpected "charity for disowned in-laws" angle. And when Mongo turned into dinner, that was the perfect touch. Quite an entry.
lauren finchum11/24/09
Ok, the thing about the puking mokney . . .hystarical! Oh my gosh, I was laughing so hard my eyes watered. I COL (cackled out loud.)
I soooooooo have relatives like this. Oh, lord! Have you met my family or something? Ok, mine aren't this bad (yet), but you never know. . . someone might get married and I'll inherit Mongo the Parrot and his lurid limericks!
Oh, and about Morty from Jersey calling . . .HANG UP QUICK! LOL.
Great work! I want more! :)
lauren finchum11/24/09
Oh, I forgot, that bit about "pennies" a day helping Edna in the accordian house was genius!
Jacob Gibson12/14/09
Guess how I found out about this article? Someone with the initials "L" and "F" who gave you some comments, recommended it to me after she found I love random humor.

Ha ha ha! What can I say that everyone else hasn't? The wit and insults bring the topic to a new level of funny though often painfully true. My favorite parts were the Heinous Act, the mad smart king's terrible edict, trying to repeal the Heinous Act, the infinite addition of new in-laws, and "Can she be removed any further?" XD

I suggest that instead of reusing Morty and Edna you could add a new character with his or her own eccentric charm. Great work! I'll have to read more of your stuff.
Nancy Sullivan 08/16/10
I see the opportunity for some hilarious costumes,especially with a partial accordian and slightly aging parrot. Not too sure about the puking monkey going over, though.