The Grammy/man-briefly-involved-with-a-Ding-Dong/penisless-man Coalition

in persuasion nation


A man and a woman sit in a field of daisies.

“Forever?” he says.

“Forever,” she says, and they kiss.

A giant Twinkie runs past, trailed by perhaps two hundred young women.

The woman leaps to her feet and runs to catch up to the Twinkie.

“The sweetest thing in the world,” the voiceover says, “just got sweeter.”

The man sits sadly in the field of daisies.

Luckily, a giant Ding-Dong runs past, trailed by perhaps two hundred young men.

The man leaps to his feet and runs to catch up with the Ding-Dong.

“But not to worry,” the voiceover says. “There’s more than enough sweetness to go around!”

The Ding-Dong puts his arm around the young man, and the young man smiles up at the Ding-Dong, and the Ding-Dong bends down and gives the young man a kiss on the head.


A hip-looking teen watches an elderly woman hobble across the street on a walker.

“Grammy’s here!” he shouts.

He puts some MacAttack Mac&Cheese in the microwave and dons headphones and takes out a video game so he won’t be bored during the forty seconds it takes his lunch to cook. A truck comes around the corner and hits Grammy, sending her flying over the roof into the backyard, where she luckily lands on a trampoline. Unluckily, she bounces back over the roof, into the front yard, landing in a rosebush.

“Timmy,” Grammy says feebly. “Call 911.”

Just then the bell on the microwave dings.

We see from the look on his face that Timmy is conflicted.

“Timmy dear,” Grammy says. “For God’s sake. It’s me. Your Grammy, dear.”

Timmy comes to his senses, takes his MacAttack Mac&Cheese from the microwave, and sits languorously eating it while listening to his headphones while playing his video game.

“Sometimes you just gotta have your MacAttack,” the voiceover says.

Grammy scowls in the bush. We see that she is a grouchy old unhip hag who probably wouldn’t have even been cool enough to let Timmy have his MacAttack, but would likely have forced him to eat some unhip old-person gruel or fruit.

Then fortunately Grammy’s head drops back, and she is dead.


Two best friends look at their penises under sophisticated microscopes.

“You call this Elongated?” says one man.

“Jim, I gained four inches,” says the other. “Perhaps you should try my brand.”

“What is your brand, Kevin?” says the other.

“My brand is, I hang a brick from my penis and stand for hour at the edge of the Grand Canyon,” says Kevin.

“Okay Kevin,” says Jim. “You’ve been my dearest friend since kindergarten. I’ll give it a try.”

Then we see Jim standing at the edge of the Grand Canyon, brick dangling from his penis, while Kevin tiptoes toward Jim’s car, and a voiceover says: Pontiac Sophisto: So sophisticated, it might just make you trick your best friend into a dangling a brick from his penis!

While Jim is distracted by the pain of the brick on his penis, Kevin squeals away in Jim’s Sophisto. As Jim spins around to look, his penis rips off and plummets into the Grand Canyon. Jim smiles wryly, acknowledging Kevin’s trick but also Kevin’s good taste in cars, then starts down into the Grand Canyon, to retrieve and, hopefully, reattach his penis.

— George Saunders, selections from the story “In Persuasion Nation” (from the book In Persuasion Nation)

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