Noted ironist author Case Hope Long was executed by lethal injection this morning for a crime neither he nor anyone else could remember. Beforehand, he announced that his last words would be, “These are my last words.”
Considered a master of the arcane form of recursive historical fiction, Long’s last and possibly greatest work was a novel titled … Sweat, considered unfinished by the few critics and scholars who have seen it because it is less than a single printed page in length—or about nine tweets, depending on your customarily preferred frame of literary reference.
The book is about a man assigned to write his own death notice for publication while waiting to be led off for execution, a task he was very much up to and anxious to complete, but was unable to get very far on because the first seven of the fifties era typewriters on the work table he was to work at were in such poor condition that they were inoperable, and when he finally found one that would suffice, the paper prison officials gave him to type on was already printed on both sides, so he had to go and ask for more with at least one blank side. When he got back he had barely three minutes to work on the project.
Oh crap, they’re here already.