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The Twee “Friday Followed” Gary Shteyngart and Sam Lipsyte, preceding their #ff hashtag with, “will u be the bestest ever and attend our war council?” Shteyngart and Lipsyte, responded simultaneously with “ASL?”, before cravenly rubbing their hands together and sending one another short, dirty poems about sailors.
The Middle-Aged Dirtbags exited their underground network from beneath a stack of discarded copies of Middlesex in Community Bookstore. The tunnel collapsed under the weight of the unsorted books. The laughing Ames raised a hand, and Auster, Moody, and the undead Selby Jr. came to a stop. Egan hovered near them, balancing on a levitating collection of The Secret. “Fall is coming,” She spoke through Selby Jr. “Our new books will be in the high double-digit demand among the literate masses—perhaps an alliance between us, the living, and you, the almost dead, will be amenable for both parties.” To prove their fealty to one another, Ferris made Auster young again. Auster, however, still felt old.
But with such tenuous alliances, a betrayal was inevitable. Shteyngart’s bottomless outfits, as well as libido, proved to be too much for the Twee camp. “As a sign of your loyalty, I demand a tribute of all your young daughters in order that they become courtesans in my harem,” with a wave of his hand he gestures to an empty parking lot behind him. “On top of that... on top of your daughters...” Losing himself in a giggle fit, he finished by breathlessly demanding a contract for seven books about a character named Barry Shteynovitch, an overweight Russian immigrant who accidentally pens the Great American Novel despite being a functional illiterate.
The Twee hung their heads in silence. They refused outrageously disgusting demands by not saying yes. This they did in unison. “I see... I understand now... you all haven’t seen the last of me! Old Shteyngart will have his day! For starters, I’ll blurb every book published in this wasteland of a borough! No book shall go untouched! If I can’t have your daughters, by God, I’ll have a slice of your publicity!” The first alliance was in tatters. The war had begun.
As news of the diplomatic collapse spread over Twitter, the Mensheviks sprang into action. To his artisanally cracked bathroom mirror, Gessen said, “First things first, we need to publish a Kindle Single about the phenomenon that was the Twee/Manhattan Slobs alliance. We enter into this project accepting that all descriptions of the alliance are doomed to fail, because the alliance itself was composed of people who, through an everyday dialectic so intimate as to render itself esoteric through its overly-insistent familiarity, are no longer the same members of the alliance that once existed. They have changed. At their most extreme, both members of the former alliance present rival ways of rejecting bourgeois modernity. This shared sense of being outsiders that initially brought them together couldn’t be sustained against their oppositional stances on sex and cleanliness. Because of historical conditions, and the F train, it had to happen. But it also had to dissolve. We will hold a public symposium on the phenomenon: What Was The Alliance? We will make it clear to the public, in no vague terms, that we’re doing everything we can to win the war. With our rhetoric, we can’t appear to lose!”