Pseudopod 142: Camp

By Jeremy C. Shipp

Read by George Hrab

My muscles tighten. My teeth clench. My irritable bowel is seriously pissed off.

I’m no good at sitting.

“Hold it together,” my dad tells me. Not physically here, of course, but why would that stop him? Hold it together—that’s easy for him to say. He’s made of steel bars and rivets and bolts. Me, I’m held together with Elmer’s glue and pushpins and chewing gum.

Memories vibrate. They fall and crack open.

01
Dean Seattle
May 15th, 2009 8:19 pm

Fucking Twisted. I liked it. Gonna haunt me for the rest of the day…

02
May 16th, 2009 1:59 am

Weird. Pretty awesome.

03
Chris
May 16th, 2009 10:25 am

So awesome

04
May 16th, 2009 1:26 pm

Brilliant. Dark. Bizarre.

05
C. Augusto Valdés
May 16th, 2009 1:40 pm

I enjoyed it a lot, I only wish the friend’s voice didn’t sound like Beavis from Beavis and Butthead.

06
Marilyn
May 16th, 2009 2:22 pm

This is weird, very visual. You have a strange and creative mind. Well done.

07
phignewton
May 16th, 2009 3:30 pm

interesting.. disturbing but inna somewhat detached way. Its difficult to entirely identify with the protaganist since …. we never went to ‘that’ sort of camp….

08
May 16th, 2009 5:37 pm

Classic Jeremy Shipp.

09
Kevin Shamel
May 16th, 2009 6:22 pm

Freaky and excellent. I really like this story.

10
May 16th, 2009 11:29 pm

I am all together too fond of this story, Jeremy, it’s awesome as a podcast. Mr. Hrab does a wonderful job! Love it.

11
May 17th, 2009 5:27 am

I always liked this story. Cursed should prove an interesting adventure as well.

12
May 17th, 2009 4:00 pm

This is certainly a hole to somewhere else.

13
Megger
May 17th, 2009 9:30 pm

Love this story. Jeremy C. Shipp is killer.

14
HBF
May 17th, 2009 10:37 pm

Love horror. Also love animals. I couldn’t get past the first two minutes to find out if it was any good – I may have to try it in the visual version so I can skip the blender.

15
Pitmonkey
May 18th, 2009 7:39 am

Twisted and wonderful.

16
devora
May 18th, 2009 7:50 pm

Ohmygod. I was listening to this in the dark and right when it ended my husband came into the room. It was not a quiet scream, poor man. That story took me to a very beautifully horrific place. HBF—after the rabbit, no issues like that. Just other, creepier issues….

17
May 19th, 2009 1:05 pm

Wow. Just, wow.

18
Derek
May 22nd, 2009 12:44 pm

I read this story at Shipp’s suggestion (via Twitter) before hearing it on Pseudopod. The story itself is delightfully twisted, but I found the narration, especially the characters’ voices, utterly annoying.

@HBF: So you can handle depictions of people being tortured, mangled, etc. (standard fare in horror) but not animals? Hmm…

19
May 26th, 2009 3:39 am

I love reading everyone’s comments. Happy that people are enjoying the tale. Feel free to visit my site for more free Shipp tales. :)

20
scatterbrain
May 26th, 2009 4:05 pm

Gruesome, just gruesome.

21
Chuck Collinge
May 27th, 2009 12:48 am

That went from kinda lame to amazing in a slow way i love.
I didn’t know George could be creepy. well, i mean he COULD be, but not an enticing sort of creepy, oh fuck it, you know what i mean.

22
June 6th, 2009 3:55 pm

I enjoyed it, and look forward to more as time permits.
Russ

23
caliscott
June 12th, 2009 11:31 pm

It was slow to get started, but come on – its pseudopod – you know it will get interesting. I was jolted when I found out the camp was for ‘lil Jasons, and then again when I realized that the sheep were not really sheep. Excellent way to draw out the story and make me invest in that little psycho protagonist.

24
June 26th, 2009 11:21 pm

@ Darek : It’s easier to imagine horrible things being done to people than it is to animals, because deep down we all realize- people deserve it.

25
Kira
June 27th, 2009 12:32 am

wait, what? I loved it, but i didnt understand it…Like, they were wolves? Killing sheep? I wish i understood.

26
July 31st, 2009 6:50 am

I’m glad I found your site!

27
August 13th, 2009 1:06 pm

Kira– the way I interpreted it is that the “wolves” and “sheep” here are all literally people, but it’s just a new way to define “us” and “them”. It’s okay for the wolves to kill the sheep because it’s the natural order of things.

The protagonist is a sheep in wolf’s clothing because he is bothered by the things he does, and in the end he pays for it.

It did start off slow, but I listened to it on a commute, so I wasn’t going anywhere anyway, and the payoff was worth the wait. I do agree that the Beavis friend’s voice was annoying, but other than that I liked the reading as well.