The Tale of Sancho and Mork: Otherwise called Brotherly Love

Illustrations by Mariel Rutherford

My friends: Here is the tale of Sancho and Mork, chemists and brothers both, and of how they found successes, and camaraderie, and love, and of how they saw their life together was good. And so, come:

1:1  In the beginning it is Sancho, brother 1. Sancho is a chemistry talent, and spends his evenings either in libraries or his garage lab, where novel compounds abound. Alas, chemistry in these economically troubled times is not as profitable as it was in the times of old, and so Sancho can afford to live only in a self-storage unit, and he has breath alone which could kill small flies. Yet he is as intelligent as the gods of old, and with bifocals equipped is as omniscient as these gods too. Plus Sancho is youthful and bold and bears resolve. And after many days of toil, Sancho designs a drug which he discovers to obliterate cancer. This is a good day.

1:2  Sancho is half-ecstatic, and runs towards the grand Office of Patents. Along the way he kisses many girls in the street, his mood inducing forgetfulness of his strong breath. His compound becomes patented. Then, Sancho makes a company called Sancho’s Annihilate Cancer Company, SACC for short. Sancho is not good at making names, but he is good at making drugs, and he calls his drug Sancho’s Annihilate Cancer Drug, SACD for short. SACD and SACC are a huge success, and Sancho and SACC become rich.

1:3  Now enters Mork, brother 2. Mork, like brother Sancho, is a chemistry talent too. It is no coincidence; their father was a chemist. It is a family profession. Because chemistry in these economically troubled times is not as profitable as it was in the times of old, brother Mork lives in a self-storage rental unit as well — though not the same unit as brother Sancho. However, by sheer coincidence they happen to be neighbours, living in the uptown self-storage facility without its washroom amenities or tooth powder or Fresh Burst Listerine, both brothers bearing their breaths of legendary status.

1:4  Mork is as smart and all-seeing as Sancho, and so Mork too intuits an idea for a parallel annihilate-cancer drug. Yet Sancho, by pure coincidence, has been able to develop his SACD idea first, and so brother Mork’s anti-cancer-drug idea, while not bad — perhaps, according to some subjective sources, even better than Sancho’s original idea — Mork’s does not become a success. Hence, Mork is scooped; there is already SACD.

1:5  With the success of Sancho and Sancho’s Annihilate Cancer Company, Sancho has the resources to procure a new suburban living arrangement. And because he is an honest and generous and equitable and family-oriented man, Sancho has Mork upgrade from the self-storage life too, Sancho giving Mork a room in his new home in the suburbs.

1:6  And SACD saves many lives, and the world’s voices come together, and rejoice, and resolve that SACC is just.

2:1  Sancho in his success brings home girls of exotic nature for many nights in sequence. He is rich from SACC; he attracts these types. His nightlife is slippery and wild. Only on the rarest occasions do Sancho’s exotic girls lose their way and arrive at Mork’s room by accident, thus enabling Mork access to exotic girls too. This is perhaps not too hard to believe; Mork’s room is coincidentally right next to Sancho’s, and is the same large size. And indeed Mork’s room is even a passing monument on the walk from the suburban household’s second-floor washroom to Sancho’s bedroom, and Mork’s face is identical to Sancho’s (they are brothers), and confusion happens, especially after a number of fresh and crispy and loose-lipped hours. So Sancho’s girls sometimes end up in Mork’s bed instead. There are signs on their bedroom doors that read SANCHO and MORK, respectively, but still confusion occurs on occasion.

2:2  Mork is not resentful or mad, because he was scooped fair and square, which happens in these competitive and chemically troubled times. And so Mork does not put Sancho under dark light in his heart.

2:3  Still, Mork cannot help but be unhappy that he did not see success instead with his cancer-annihilating drug idea, which perhaps could have been as successful as SACD. Mork had been thinking too of patenting his idea, and of developing a company called MACC, and of naming the corresponding compound MACD. Like Sancho, Mork is not good at making names. For a time Mork wanders the suburban house with rain clouds in his eyes; and Sancho, as the selfless and empathetic cancer-annihilating phenom that he is, observes that Mork is not plumb.

2:4  In a spark of lightly aged wisdom, Sancho approaches the elder household chemist called Pops, who in his old age of retirement relegates his tired, uncharged body to the basement of Sancho’s suburban home, where his time is spent drinking Jack D and looking at VR and alphabetically organizing his impressive stash of vintage performance-enhancing drugs, on the off-chance that exotic girls find their way all the way downstairs by accident, which hasn’t ever happened as far as Pops in his senile age can recall. His domain smells of mildew and Crunchy Cheddar Jalapeño Cheetos. And Sancho comes here, and he asks elder Pops what it is they should do about Mork, whose pathways are aimless and whose flatulence always smells of hand-me-down exotic spices. And wise old Pops says to Sancho, between sips and breaths, that Mork is his brother: and brothers love.

Illustrations by Mariel Rutherford

2:5  Meanwhile, SACD is a hit, and SACC becomes grander and grander. The world sees Sancho and declares him a god for annihilating the perils of cancer. Earth is of the opinion that Sancho should be on the throne. And although brother Sancho’s mind is warm with flattery, he is a humble man, and knows not to accept.

2:6  Now Sancho takes a look at his brother Mork, who is down in the dumps; he takes his look long and hard. Sancho, it goes without saying, is CEO and CFO and owner of SACC, which reality he is reminded of every day due to the tasteful embossed bamboo name plaque on his high-paying office’s desk. By this time SACC is an enterprise, with employees and helpers across countries and space-times and worlds, and the HQ in Sancho and Mork’s hometown reaches its glass walls several twelve-foot-ceilinged storeys into the sky — i.e., being nearly as big as many North American egos. And Sancho sees Mork’s face, similar to his own (they are brothers): Mork’s ill-hygiened oral cavity, Mork’s eyes like faraway ships. He remembers Pops’s words: that brothers love. So Sancho rubs his own rotund belly and says he will give to Mork a high-paying, high-importance position at SACC. Thusly, Mork is instantly Sancho’s number-two man.

2:7  We must realize that, amid the initial rising success of SACC, Mork did not feel jealousy towards brother Sancho, not once. However, Mork did sometimes wish that time was more on his side.

3:1  But now at this point, with two brilliant chemists at the helm, SACC flourishes like microbes on unrefrigerated meat. Cancer rates drop through the drain. Sancho’s and Mork’s intelligent minds become aligned, and enable the price of SACD to go down, down, down, giving persons in financially inept and other less fortunate positions the ability to harness the joys of cancer-free living too. All thanks to the single idea of SACD: one idea, one path. And time passes, and Mork soon forgets his original anti-cancer idea, his idea of different flavour but not necessarily different value; he forgets it, him now being a high-profile chemist for Sancho, which is what Mork does best. And for a while it is like Mork’s idea never even existed, and Sancho and Mork, brothers both, are resolved, and life is prime, and worriless, and good.

3:2  And if you thought Sancho’s original rags-to-riches, exotic-girl parties were wild, now with brother Mork they are unreal. Sancho has a double pocket door installed in the dividing wall between his and Mork’s rooms, which sit in adjoining positions. And every night the door is opened wide to fit all the fun that their nights now constitute. They achieve full utilization of two-for-the-price-of-one deals on exotic girls, and complete more Domino’s Pizza sixth-one-free cards than can be counted on two regularly digited sets of hands and feet. Too, it goes without saying, there are ample illicit compounds all around; Sancho and Mork are chemists both.

3:3  SACC flies high, and becomes a piece of vision in the public’s eye — with Sancho and Mork at the helm. They are good-looking men, bearing stubble and tough chins, and their faces move tabloids off the shelves. There are TV dramas, email bulletins, YouTube analyses — all on brothers Sancho and Mork.

3:4  Okay, yes, they are good-looking dudes, Sancho and Mork, but it should also be admitted that after so many nights of pizza, the brothers both do indeed possess imposing bellies; they are not all merely stone-cheeked faces. And some days Sancho’s belly is bigger, and some days Mork’s is instead, and it is as if this depends on the weather.

3:5  Their parties become wilder, and there are heated nights. There are two fans installed, one for Mork’s room and one for Sancho’s. The sheets on the beds are leopard print, and some days Sancho and Mork end up beside each other, and they are brothers, and brothers love. And when the pocket door is opened, the circulation from the fans moves throughout.

3:6  But we must remember still it was not merely one idea; once there were two.

3:7  And lo, the history of SACC soon surfaces. It is realized that Mork was not always at the helm. Drama abounds. It is said that Mork is a charity case, a SACC unoriginal. It is said the positions are uneven. It is said one brother is giving the other short change. They are smart men both, but could one be more or less smart than the other? What if it is one mind being rewarded for the other’s stead, and it is false attribution? There appear many tabloids at grocery checkout shelves that put the brothers’ faces side by side; their faces are nearly the same. Could it be the case of a one-two switcheroo? A fifth-floor fiasco? SACC is huge, and SACD saves lives. Drama ascends. It is prophesied that one brother cannot live while the other survives. And so on and so forth, for days and for years.

Illustrations by Mariel Rutherford

4:1  But this is just a hiccup. Such is the way of the world. We know the drama is untrue. Cancer is on the low, low, low. And Sancho and Mork survive; they do, they do. See, they are brothers, they are flesh until the end, and their flesh is strong and unfreckled and highly motile from a careful lifetime of UV-ray awareness. SACC endures for many moons. And so, it becomes twenty years later, and the brothers grow impressive bellies both. Their oral hygiene is now well-informed. The patent on SACD expires, and generics jump on it right out of the gate — what can you expect; SACD was the most successful drug ever developed. And so Sancho and Mork in their middle age are to decide what they will do next. They sit down to plan their coming years, to ensure they will both find success. Realistically speaking, this is a discussion they should have had many years before Sancho’s patent was to expire, because now SACC is at the risk of bankruptcy. But they were busy these years with exotic girls and pizza; they have no regrets. They look into each other’s eyes. They say how they don’t want a repeat of the past, with one of them stepping on the other’s ideas, and the other turning melancholy due to his lack of success. They are brothers, and brothers love. They have Starbucks coffee on the desk during this discussion, to aide their traversing of the tough problem. Off the bat they conclude that what they cannot do is again both be independently coming up with the same idea, which would put them in a position where they would need to compete. So they observe two options. Option 1: they come up with different ideas, on different diseases (not cancer, since cancer has been destroyed), and guide each of their respective companies along different paths, and each hope for independent success; and this option would most likely represent a parting of ways, a goodbye, probably both brothers segregating towards their own separate houses, which might not even be on the same street. Option 2: the two brothers combine forces and create SMACC, a joint company, and collaborate, harnessing their supreme mental firepower to annihilate diseases left and right — as well as, it goes without saying, also annihilating the competition, i.e., all the other weak disease-ameliorating companies; and this way they would live long and prosperous lives together, as brothers. Except with option 2 there is a catch, as there often is: the brothers at this point of life are so old and atherosclerotic and fatty-hearted that the choice of option 1 versus 2 is determining, and will shape the short rest of their old-age lives; and so, by combining forces and making SMACC, the two distinct brotherly lives of Sancho and Mork would be damned to one; thusly we would go from two brothers to one; in a way one brother dies. So they see the options but don’t know what to choose. The options are both good, but too they are both bad. And Sancho and Mork for a minute are lost. But they recall the words of Pops, when Sancho went to see him that one time: You are brothers, and brothers must love. Pops had his funeral five years earlier, which they could not attend because they were busy with exotic girls, after which funeral there was an occasion where one of the exotic girls accidentally tripped and fell down two flights of stairs and ended up at the door of the now-vacant bedroom of Pops, the first time Sancho or Mork recalled this ever happening, which was poor timing for late Pops and his alphabetically organized performance-enhancing compounds indeed. Then they remember as well the time when Sancho and Mork were in the same bed together, and making love to many exotic girls; and sometimes at these moments they would also be making love to one another, Sancho to Mork and Mork to Sancho, because these were wild times and it was unavoidable, there on the leopard-print bedding amid ample compounds and pizza slices and fan breezes and exotic smells; and this wasn’t all that bad, since brothers love. They recall, and they ruminate, bearing their round bellyfuls of Starbucks coffee, which is stale and burnt. And from the coffee they now both have to use the facilities.

4:2  And they get to the suburban second-floor facilities, and they look upon the mirror, and see their faces two: Sancho, brother; and Mork, brother; and they look from face to face. Faces that indeed are quite alike and similar and easy to confuse, which makes the tabloids’ blunders perhaps a little bit excusable; and Sancho and Mork are thankful for the tattoos they procured to go across their upper backs — SANCHO across Sancho’s, and MORKacross Mork’s — which keep them distinct. And they see their faces tired and oily from hours of thought, and so they dip to wash. They dip there, into the sink of water, blowing air through nose and mouth like making water bubbles is a game. And they come up, and they slip on their bifocals, and they look.

4:3  But now what they see is something new. It is new and something not seen before. Because now there is only one face. There is one face, and Sancho and Mork are not distinct, and have not been this whole time. It is merely Sanchomork, with his two minds inside, and thus there are not two brothers but one; the second brother has been dead all along.

4:4  So Sanchomork stands, and he thinks — of Sancho, of Mork, of Pops, gone three, and lo, he sees: today there is death, and death is real, is real, is real.

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