The god of those little things you use to make your collar bigger around the top button

“What are you the god of again?”

Sigh.

“Those little things you use to make your collar bigger. Around the top button.”

“Oh, for if you have, like, a wide neck, right?”

“Right.”

“That’s a weird thing to be the god of. Aren’t gods supposed to…”

“Yeah, I know. War, love, harvest, sun. But, I’m the god of collar extenders.”

“Oh, is that what they’re called?”

“Yes. They’re called collar extenders.”

#

It’s the reunion. Sex is sexy, as always. Thunder is being loud and obnoxious. Everyone loves Thunder. He’s such an asshole.

“Hey, the KAHL-ERRRRR! It’s Collar, guys!”

Sigh. Smack on the back. Big smiles. Noogie.

“Collar, when you gonna get a better gig, man? You just gonna ride it out with those neck hook-y things forever?”

“They’re called collar extenders.”

“Whatever. Brother, you gotta try something new. Look at me, I control THUNDER! You know what the ladies do when I do THIS?”

BOOM. CRACK. BOOOOOOM.

“No, Thunder, I don’t.”

“Yeah, and you NEVER will!” BWAHAHAHA.

Thunder is such an asshole.

#

Momma’s homemade meatballs, goooood. Momma’s motivational speeches, baaaaaad.

“…so talented, and so handsome! You could do anything you want, you know.”

Yes, Momma.

“Did you hear about the opening over in Architecture? Very stable, you know, with regular hours. A little inspiration here, a little construction there. Quarterly sacrifices and an established worshipper base…”

No, Momma.

“I don’t know why you insist on wasting your time with those silly loopy neck things. You’re never going to get anywhere unless you take some initiative.”

They’re called collar extenders. And I like them. I don’t know how to explain it, but it’s what I care about. It’s just…what I do.

“Your father and I really wish you would apply yourself.”

And I wish you would just leave me the hell alone. Maybe I could get an internship with Death, he’s probably easier going than Momma.

#

BBBBBRRRRIIIIINNNNNGGGGG

What? I have an old phone. Click.

“Hello?”

“Oh, yes. I’m looking for…ummm…the god of those little things you use to make a collar bigger. Around the top button.”

“That’s me.”

“Oh, yes. Good. I, ummmm…need one.”

“Oh…okay. Have you looked online? Wonder Button sells them in sets of five for three dollars and fifty cents.”

“Oh, ummm…no. I need a special one. For my son.”

Awkward silence.

“Special how?”

“Can you just come over and take a look? We’re…ummm…on the Mountain.”

“On the Mountain?”

“Yes. At the top.”

Oh. THAT Mountain.

OK. I’ll be right there.”

“Thank you.”

Click.

#

KNEEL BEFORE THE ALMIGHTY, YOUR KING AND SUPREME LORD OF THE SKIES, WHOSE NAME IS JUSTICE AND WHOSE MAJESTY IS

“Oh, would you be quiet! Just, come over here, please.”

The King looks nervous. The Queen looks pissed. Then I see why.

“He’s just a bit wide around the neck, you see. And, it’s very important that he look presentable for this evening.”

A bit wide around the neck = tennis ball balanced on top of missile silo.

“Oh come now dear, tell him whyyyyyy his neck is so big.”

Angry Queen makes me shiver. Kinda like Momma.

“The boy is…well, he’s my…you see, the Giantess Queen and I, we…”

“He’s a bastard. Look at him! That peanut head and that tree trunk neck of his. You’ll never get him married off! This ball is a waste of time.”

The boy’s shoulders slump. His teeny tiny little face gets all red and hot-looking. His collar is dangling off to the sides of his neck like swinging gates that have just been rammed open.

“Can you help him?”

Of course I can. This is what I do. This is why I am.

I wave my hands. Then I sing.

Thirty-two, Thirty-six,
Medium, Small.
These are the sizes
that must fit them all.

Your tuxedo, your blazer,
your sweaty sports coat.
Their value is fleeting
if you’re pinched ’round the throat.

You’ve grabbed and you’ve pulled,
You’ve twisted and shouted.
You’ve begged and you’ve pleaded,
You’ve cried and you’ve pouted.

But what can you do,
when you’re about to surrender?
I give you this gift –
the collar extender.

And just like that. Eyes are wide. The boy looks down, and smiles. The King adjusts the boy’s tie, and then grabs me by the shoulders.

“You…you…you DID IT! Can you…I mean, would you consider…we have an office, here. We could use someone of your resources.”

His Highness, the Royal Collar Extender. I like the sound of that.

#

The King knows how to party. THIS is a ball.

Sex is there, and so is Thunder. He’s doing his BOOM BOOM thing, but Sex looks bored. She comes over.

I heard you got a new job working for the King. You gonna live at the palace?”

“I guess so.”

“Wow. That’s impressive. They say you really bailed the King out of a jam.”

“I guess so.”

“What did you do?”

“I did what I do.”

She smiles. She is…pretty.

“I’ll bet you did. What are you the god of again?”

“Those little things you use to make your collar bigger. Around the top button.”

“Oh, you mean collar extenders?”

I smile. Yes, they’re called collar extenders.

Matthew Hentrich is a struggling young author who writes silly stories like the one you just finished reading in between serious attempts to put together speculative fiction novels. He has travelled to sixteen different countries on three continents in his meager twenty-eight years of existence, and now spends his spare time trying to remember how it was that he ended up settling down in Eastern Iowa. He wishes he had a long list of impressive achievements and writing accolades to quote, but alas, he does not. But, his third-grade teacher did give him an A-plus on his paper about what he did over the summer.

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2 Responses to The god of those little things you use to make your collar bigger around the top button

  1. colleendown says:

    My son is 5’1″ and has a 17 1/2″ neck–I get this–it spoke to me 🙂 I bet that paper on what you did over the summer was amazing too!

  2. Thanks Colleen! I have a big neck too 😛

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