Okay, so Godzilla and Mothra walk into a bar, right, and—
Wait, no, sorry, rule of threes. Hold on.
Godzilla, and Mothra, AND Mecha-Godzilla walk into a bar, and they all sit down, and—
Wait, damnit, I forgot the religions, it’s like a whole big part. Shit, let me start over.
Godzilla and Mothra and Mecha-Godzilla walk into a bar, and Godzilla is a priest, and Mothra is a Rabbi, and Mecha-Godzilla is an Imam. They all sit down, and the waitress comes over, and—
Shit, I just had a thought. Is it, like, offensive to have Mecha-Godzilla be Muslim? Like, I feel like maybe I don’t know enough about Islam and, like, its tenets to know if I’m tapping into some kind of stereotype, and I just…don’t want to be that person, right? Okay, let me try again.
Two Godzillas and Mothra walk into a bar, and none of them are particularly religious. They all come into a totally secular bar, and they sit down, and the waitress comes and over and asks for their order, and Godzilla says, you’re gonna love this, he says—
Okay, so just a little context, right, so that the punchline makes sense. It’s important to know for later that Mothra is, like, this giant moth. Although now that I say it, it’s kinda right there in the name. He’s a giant moth, and in the 90’s there was this product called a “Bug Zapper.”
Anyway, back to it. The waitress asks for their order, and Godzilla says, he says, “I’ll have the bug zapper,” and Mothra says, “The bug zapper, what’s that?” and Godzilla, he goes, you’re gonna love this, it just killed me, he goes—
No, Mecha-Godzilla is mostly here for the rule of threes, and so it can seem like all the monsters are having a fun night out. It’s more of a vibe thing.
Damnit, I lost my train of thought. Where was I?
Oh yeah, so Mothra says, “The bug zapper, what’s that?” and Godzilla, he slaps Mothra to death, like totally to death, and he says, “I’m the bug zapper!”
…Or is it, “that’s the bug zapper?”
Anyway, Mothra’s totally dead, and a fun guy’s night out is ruined, and Mecha-Godzilla is weeping into his whiskey-neat at the passing of yet another good friend from this cruel world, and it’s all just…
Hold on, it was funnier when I heard it the first time. Let me start over.
Frances Klein (she/her) is a poet and teacher writing at the intersection of disability and gender. She is the 2022 winner of the Robert Golden Poetry Prize, and the author of the chapbooks New and Permanent (Blanket Sea 2022) and The Best Secret (Bottlecap Press 2022).