A Short, Short Story

by Derek Bacon?

Converted to HTML by Benjamin D. Hutchins

Lance Gerund had a problem.

His problem was this: His name sounded like a grammar excercise.

It wasn't his fault, of course. Nobody chooses their parents. At least, nobody did back when he was born. Today, things were different.

That was his real problem. Not only did he have a name that sounded like a grammar excercise, but everyone assumed he had chosen it on purpose.

Solutions did not come easy. After the cutoff date, at age ten, it was much harder to requisition new parents. And, just changing your last name, was a sure fire way to get yourself written out of a will. There was no denying the advantages to being the only heir to the vast Gerund Empire. An empire grown out of a small publishing company that specialized in English texts. It has soon spread to PBSD documentaries, history-based game shows. Now it was a multi-media conclomberate that controlled nearly all of what everyone saw, heard, or read about on the east coast.

There! Yes, there was the solution to Lance's problem.

He started small, borrowing video equipment from his father's television production facility, using the studios late at night to do final editing. He made several movies, each a different plot, each with a different hero.

There was Preposition Man!, the superhero with the inclination to speak in complex sentences--diagramming the structure as he went.

Detective Friedrich vonVerb, the grammar sleuth.

And who could forget Mamie Natasha Noun, the voluptuous star of stage, screen, and television.

Soon, everyone wanted a name that sounded like a grammar excercise.

Problem solved.


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Benjamin D. Hutchins