Take a commonly accepted practice and argue in its favor as though it wasn’t commonly accepted.
The screaming started just after 2 A.M. I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter. I reached the living room to find Adam standing over a prone body, bloody baseball bat raised over his head ready for his next blow.
“Stop! What are you doing?”
Adam mumbled something about an intruder, but I was already on the floor, checking the eyes of the man on the floor. Seeing no twinkles, I checked his other vital signs. His dimples were no longer merry, and his droll little mouth lay slackly open, a trickle of blood staining the carpet.
“You killed Saint Nick.” I breathed. Adam dropped the bat and backed away in horror.
My first thought was for the children. I’m not sure if that makes me a monster or a candidate for mother of the year, but what were they going to do when Santa didn’t show? Sure, this year we could just plunder his bag of toys and they would be none the wiser, but what about next year?
“What happened here?” a new voice asked. I whipped around. I hadn’t even heard my mother-in-law come in. I explained the situation, concluding with my worries about the children. She was cold, calculating, and heartless as always. I’m not sure she even looked twice at the body on her carpet. “Here’s what we do. We become Santa. The kids will never know the difference, once they’re older, they will figure it out, but they’ll just assume it was one more lie that we told them, just like the puppy that got sent to the farm and all that.”
The teenage department store employee gaped at me, rendered completely speechless. “And that,” I concluded, “is why you need to march yourself back into the storeroom and find me a Transformers Dark of the Moon Ultimate Optimus Prime.”
What is wrong with me?
K: Oh, Jeez, I was convinced I didn’t care about scoring this week, but you people are MAKING me care. This is about the fifth one that deserves the top spot, but I only have one five to give. It’s an unconventional choice, presented unconventionally, with shock humor that actually shocks and is well-written throughout leading to a punchline that’s hilarious and specific while remaining pitch black. Alright, you convinced me.
5 points on a forced curve (5 point max.)
DK: I laughed at this one a fair bit, too. I thought this idea was pretty clever and the author made it make a lot of sense.
4 points on a forced curve (5 point max.)
I almost overthought this one and spent way too much time on world-building and stuff that really didn’t matter. Thank goodness for the word limit.