Bimmie Says 1962 scifi short story

Bimmie Says scifi short story




Bimmie says people are stupid. Bimmie says he can help themóbut theyíre not really worth his trouble, Bimmie says!




Bimmie Says (1962)

June 27, 1982 Bimmie said to do this, keep a diary. I said, Cows? He said, You deaf, woman? A book! Then I remembered, only I havenít seen one. Itís for when heís famous. Then we can have it published anytime we need money.

Iíd better tell about us. Iím short, sort of cute, and I cook good. Bimmieís tall and skinny, he likes to eat. Heís 18, Iím 16. We got married 22 days ago. Instead of a fancy wedding, Bimmie told my folks, Give us money.

He needed the money for his laboratory. Itís in the basement. Itís whatíll make him famous.

June 31, 1982 We got a cat and dog. Theyíre black and two months old. I wanted red collars. Bimmie said, Donít waste my money, woman.

Bimmie wanted them down in his laboratory. He said thatíd be proper conditions. I said, No, Iíll leave if you do and youíll have to eat capsules.

The catís he, the dogís she. Bimmie doesnít want them outside, ever.

July 3, 1982 We thought Bimmieís folksíd change their minds. But they said, Finally and conclusively, we wonít. Bimmie says he doesnít want to go to college if theyíre stingy because we got married. He already knows everything important.

He wants me to finish school. I can finish in December. I thought when you got married you didnít have to, just slept late and fixed your hair.

July 9, 1982 The puppyís Susta, the catís Sup. Sustaís jealous because Sup jumps on the couch, and she canít.

Bimmieíll have to make pills for Susta. She hides from his needle. Sheíll be small. Thatís good, Bimmie says.

August 17, 1982 He just married me to cook! Every night heís in his laboratory. Iím always in this stupid, ugly house.

August 18, 1982 Susta wonít change for a long time. Bimmie has pills now.

September 1, 1982 School started. Frankieís still stuck on me. He says Iím sexy, thatís why Bimmie married me. I said, He married me for my cooking. He laughed.

September 11, 1982 I felt funny again. I stopped by Mommaís. She bets she knows what it is. She knew after ten days.

September 15, 1982 I had to ask the school nurse if it was that. She said, Yes, two weeks. I hope sheís wrong. Babies are work. She said, But the fulfillment. I said, Changing soppy diapers is what you call fulfillment?

It doesnít show. Frankie winked at me.

September 17, 1982 The cat climbed those lace curtains Bimmieís mother gave us. Bimmie said it was my job to watch him. I said, Thatís a stupid way to spend my life. He said, I didnít marry you to have you sit around and do nothing.

Susta watched Sup and whined. She wants to be a cat.

September 27, 1982 Bimmie read my diary. He said there wasnít a June 31. He says to tell more about his work. It wonít make money if heís not in it.

I told him about the baby. He said, Whoopee! He got some obstetrics books.

October 5, 1982 Bimmie expects the baby to kick already. Iím glad it doesnít! He made the puppyís pills tonight.

October 7, 1982 I let them outside. The smell in the house turns my stomach. Iím afraid to take the pills Bimmie made me.

October 9, 1982 I let them out again. Thereís a black dog next door with a long nose, ears like rosebuds and white feet. Susta was scared. Sup hissed.

October 25, 1982 Bimmieís so nice. He took me to a tridiversion. He hates them. He said, Theyíre for the cloddy-minded masses. I said, Well, what are we?

I want a tridiversion wall. Bimmie says, No. We had a fight.

October 30, 1982 I took a pill Bimmie made. I felt good.

I let them out. It beats cleaning up. Susta played with that dog.

November 7, 1982 I went to Dr. Brantly. He hypnotized me. I donít remember it.

December 13, 1982 Sustaís leaving spots. I thought, Sheís hurt. Bimmie explained and said, Donít let her out. He wants to wait till next time to have puppies. He said, The treatment must take full effect first. He explained but I didnít understand.

January 5, 1983 Iím out of school. Itís boring. Momma says Iím too young to settle down. Sheís crazy. Iím sixteen.

January 11, 1983 Bimmieís reading more obstetrics books. Hypnotism too. He tried to hypnotize me, but I went to sleep.

January 14, 1983 I wish Momma would stop. She said, Whereíre you going to put a baby, with only one bedroom. She cried and called me Baby. Gosh! She said, You shouldnít have cats around babies, youíll have to give him away.

Bimmie heard, from the bedroom. He came out. He said, I am conducting an important scientific experiment with the cat and dog. I would as soon give away the baby. Momma got white under her plasti-skin. She said, Bimmie, youíre a monster for experimenting on dumb animals. And for rejecting your own child.

Then Sup climbed the curtains Momma gave us. She shrieked, Youíre ungrateful! and huffed out.

She came back later, asking us to forgive her. She said she wanted to help, since weíre both still children. Well!

I do wonder where weíll put the baby. Maybe on the couch.

February 17, 1983 I had to tell Bimmie I was letting them out. Sup fought with the dog next door. Bimmie got mad. He told me, They must have a controlled environment. I said, Itís hard for me to bend over to clean up. Finally he said heíd clean up and wasnít it funny Sup and that dog knew they were rivals.

I didnít know myself.

March 17, 1983 I saw Dr. Brantly today. He says Iím fine. I tried to remember him putting me in the trance, but I couldnít.

April 19, 1983 Saw Dr. Brantly. Sup pulled the curtains down. Susta isnít jealous any more, sheís playing with a string.

May 9, 1983 Iím writing this next day. Last night I had this sharp pain. I said, Bimmie, call Dr. Brantly. I remember him looking at me funny. Thatís all I remember until I woke up in the hospital. Bimmie was sitting beside me, looking proud. I asked him, Whatís happened? He grinned. We have a nine-pound son, he said. I named him after the man who delivered him. I said, Did I faint? That wasnít the way it was explained, just that Dr. Brantly would put me in a trance. Bimmie was too busy grinning to say, then he had to go to work. The doctor came in. I said, It wasnít bad, I only felt one pain. He frowned. I said, Can I see the baby? He said, Later. He went out too.

I thought I must have cussed.

I didnít understand until the nurse brought the baby. He had a little plastic bracelet that said Bimford Fost, Jr. He was red and squalling. I felt like doing the same, because I knew why Bimmie had been studying those obstetrics books. He has to try everything!

May 21, 1983 Iím seventeen today. Bimmie says to write more. He thinks thatís all I have to do. The baby sleeps all the time he isnít crying. I like him, only Iím tired of diapers.

Susta gets three pills every day. She plays with them, then eats them. Bimmie said last night, It wonít be long until my experiment bears fruit. He said to write that here.

June 3, 1983 Susta tried to climb the curtains.

June 5, 1983 Bimmie wanted to give the baby some pills he made. I said, No. He said, Theyíll make him smarter, woman. I said, Heís enough trouble dumb.

Today was our first anniversary. Bimmie wouldnít buy me anything.

June 9, 1983 We fought about a dryer. After he left I said, For that Iíll let your animals out. The dog next door came up. Susta arched her back.

June 21, 1983 Iíve been putting them out every day.

June 25, 1983 Bimmie says to write every day, his experiment is coming to a head. I canít see anything happening. Susta gets six pills now.

June 27,1983 The dogís that way again. Bimmie said, At last my experiment shall be carried to completion. Not that I care for fame and riches, no, I care only for the accomplishment of something man has never before achieved. I said he didnít sound natural. He said, Put it down that way, woman.

June 29, 1983 Bimmie wanted to feed the baby. I caught him before he gave him a pill. We fought. He said, Who delivered him? I said, I made him, and pointed to my stomach. I said, I wonít have you using him like a guinea pig.

July 4, 1983 Bimmie says tomorrow weíll shut them up in the basement.

July 5, 1983 The funniest thing. Bimmie said, You put them in the basement. Then he left. I thought, Iíll just take them out while I hang diapers. But when we went out, three dogs came up. I said, Scat! I couldnít chase them because I had my arms full of diapers, because Bimmie wonít buy me a basket. They came closer, edging around. I stomped my feet and yelled. The dog next door came and growled. Then Sup hissed at him. This was the first the other three saw Sup. He hunched up, spitting and intending to chase them off. Only they took out after him instead. He ran off with four dogs after him. I couldnít do anything, my arms were full.

July 6, 1983 Bimmie didnít think it was funny. He yelled, What are you, stupid? Didnít you know dogs would come around? Didnít you know dogs chase cats? He took the car and called, Kitty, kitty, all over town. No luck. I said, Get another cat. He said, This one is used to Susta. I said, Thereíll be another time. He stared at me and said Sustaís system would tolerate only so much of the stuff heís been giving her. He canít give her any more after next month. Heíll have to wait another year. Then he went looking again.

That was last night. Maybe heíll come home tonight.

July 7, 1983 He hasnít. Bimmieís biting his fingernails. Heíd bite harder if he knew what happened today.

I thought Susta was asleep when I went to hang diapers. I had my arms clear full. When I opened the door, Susta shot past me. I yelled at her, but she went flying down the street, and I saw that dog next door take off behind her. I thought first thing, Itís Bimmieís fault for not buying a dryer.

I hung the clothes fast. After all, nothing could happen in such a short time. Then I started up the street calling, Here Susta! But the baby was alone, I had to hurry home.

She came back in half an hour. I didnít tell Bimmie yet.

July 8, 1983 I didnít tell him, still. He was mad because he had to pay to get Sup out of the pound. Bimmie salved his ears, they were torn, and put them in the basement. He said, Now!

July 15, 1983 Bimmie says to write every day. Itís dull, them in the basement. They come up tomorrow.

July 23, 1983 Susta acts funnier than ever. She rubs my legs when Iím cooking. She keeps wetting her paws and rubbing her face.

August 3, 1983 Today I caught Susta sharpening her claws on the couch. I said, Bimmie, look at the crazy dog, thinks sheís a cat. He frowned. He only has one pimple now, heís kind of handsome. I said, Isnít it cute? Bimmie went downstairs. I think he was worried.

August 11, 1983 Sustaís getting big. I let her sleep with the baby. Bimmie says, Whoopee! It worked! Iím scared to tell him now.

August 12, 1983 Susta rubs my leg when sheís hungry. Then she sits and switches her tail for a long time.

August 17, 1983 Susta meowed today. I was fixing dinner. She looked up and said, Meow. It wasnít supposed to be this way. Bimmieís afraid sheíll have kittens. That isnít what heís trying to do.

September 5, 1983 Susta wanted to go down in the basement this afternoon. When I called her for supper she came up with her stomach flat. Bimmie and I went down. Susta ducked back in a hole in the wall. Thereís a sort of little cave. We said, They must be in there. We got a flash, and we could see little black balls. Bimmie couldnít reach them.

Bimmie kept talking about how his experiment is going to revolutionize agriculture.

September 6, 1983 I can hear her meowing to them. We can see them with the flash. We canít tell anything yet.

September 7, 1983 Heíll buy a typewriter but not a dryer! Heís going to write a book about his experiment. He expects me to type it.

September 10, 1983 She still wonít bring them out. She purred today, rusty-like. Bimmie says, sometimes, It had to work. Other times he bites his nails.

He gave me ten pages to type. I thought Iíd better.

September 13, 1983 I went down to call Susta and I saw them. There were five, wobbling everywhere. Theyíre the cutest fat things. I picked one up, and then I felt sick. He had a long nose and little rosebud ears and white feet. He looked like the dog next door.

All of them do. Theyíre all puppies. Nothing else, just puppies.

I put them in a box, and took them upstairs.

Bimmieís working tonight. Iíll go to bed before he comes home.

September 14, 1983 He raved all morning and tromped around. I said, Shut up or Iíll leave and youíll have to eat capsules. He said, I could eat dog food! Then he wanted to see my diary. I said, No. But he yanked out all the drawers and found it.

I took the baby and went to Mommaís.

It was suppertime when I came home. He was on the couch with Sup and Susta and the puppies.

He didnít act mad, just nasty-nice. So you came home, he said. I never realized how limited you were, Listie. Your diaryís shown me a lot. Can you at least find homes for the puppies?

I said, I guess. I put the baby down. He hadnít thrown anything or burned my diary.

He said, Good, then. Iíve fixed supper.

He had hamburger, frozen pie and hot chocolate. Some of it tasted bad. I didnít say anything.

September 15, 1983 I asked Bimmie, Should I quit my diary? He said, Yes. Then, No, keep on. I asked, was he doing another experiment? He said, Not yet. I said, Bim better not start talking early. He said, You donít think Iíd experiment with my own child? I didnít know. He said, Bim might be smart anyway. I said, He might be, heís your son. It was a good compliment.

September 17, 1983 Bimmie wants to learn cooking. He said, You have to work hard, hanging diapers. It will help if I can cook.

Iíll teach him hot chocolate first. His fixing tastes awful.

October 5, 1983 I have little to report. Bimford, Jr. is flourishing. The puppies are adorable. Susta and Sup tend them jointly.

Bimmie has no new project. He has thrown all his energies into cooking. He does quite well, except for hot chocolate, which still tastes of chemicals.

I never, until yesterday, realized the intellectual and sensual joy to be derived from delving into Greek drama.

November 9, 1983 Bimford, Jr. is six months old today. Since I gave up the last puppy, the house seems barnlike in its emptiness. I mentioned the fact to Bimford.

His glance was speculative. "I have some money saved. Want a tridiversion wall?"

I was horrified. "Whatever for?"

He shrugged. "Maybe youíd like to go to the library. Get something to read."

I considered. "Perhaps I will," I said. "There isnít much for me to do, hang diapers and push buttons. Automation has almost completely eliminated the housewifeís traditional chores."

I left Bimford, Jr. with Mother and walked to the library. I asked the librarian to show me about.

"What are you interested in?" she inquired.

"I donít know," I replied. "Do you have any good recent works on chemistry or perhaps nuclear physics?"

She raised her eyebrows but conducted me to the proper shelf. After finding several interesting volumes, I also checked out a volume on cookery for Bimford. His hot chocolate doesnít improve, despite nightly practice.

He tells me he is working on a new project.



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