THOSE DARNED ALIENS
by Matthew Sanborn Smith
Saltwater got them drunk, so you can imagine what they felt when they discovered Earth. Imagine humans discovering a planet with vast oceans of rum. Didn’t matter that it was peppered with tons of fish poo, that rum was going to be drunk. To hell with “Take me to your leader.” The Sock Monsters of Becky’s World made big time deals with the first bozos they found, usually fishermen, to export our seas in little shiploads.
“Say, you can’t do that,” the rest of the world said. “You don’t own the oceans.”
“Neither do you,” replied the fishermen. “Don’t piss us off or we’ll sic our alien pals on you.” The rest of the world backed off. They didn’t really need to argue. The Sock Monsters were an undisciplined lot. They drank more saltwater than they moved so they were loaded long before their ships were. They got into crazy drunken fights, rending one another to tatters. We actually made out well on the deal, selling the aliens tons of thread once their medical supplies ran out.
They bankrupted themselves here, every last patchy drunk of them and eventually, with all the Terran thread coursing through their bodies, they became more Earther than Becky’s Worlder. The fight had gone out of them. They were pulled in by the net-load and wound out their days in ignominy, wrapping the feet of fishermen’s children throughout hundreds of Atlantic coastal villages.