Errata Literary Magazine

Bucks County Writers Workshop

My Second Cousin Abdul

by Jules C. Winistorfer

Is strange land, America. I am saddened by the thousands of deaths on September 11, 2001--but on the other hand, the infidel dogs get only what they deserve. And the anthrax attack, which follows is, how you say, "Icing to the cake." It is beyond my understanding why American people are so incensed at my Islamic brethren--everybody knows it is the Jews who blow up the World Trade Center.

About three years ago, not long after these celebrated events, I am completing my book, Rushdie Unmasked, by Akbar Mousaad--that's me. In it I am debunking the motherless pig's vile lies about Islam. I am proving false Salman Rushdie's many blasphemous references to the Prophet Muhammad and... enough of my book. If you want to know more you must buy book.


I live in Jersey City for about eight years now. I become citizen of this strange country six years ago when immigration authorities challenge status of my visa. How they find me I will never know--as Americans say, "Every son of a bitch and his grandmother violates the immigration laws"--why me? But it is either be deported or apply for U.S. citizenship. Because I do not want to return to a hovel back home where, for ten paisas a day, my wife carries heavy bags of flour on her head to a government bakery, which makes matzo to be exported to Israel, I succumb to the coercion of Big Uncle Satan.


"Nadya, remember to pick up your good chador from the cleaners; did you forget we have dinner at Hillary Clinton's this evening? I don't want you looking like a camel boy. It is important, they are saying, 'To hang with the right people'." That is my wife, Nadya. She is a good woman, but since she learns to read and write she is sometimes downright disobedient. "Nadya, do as I say or I cut out your tongue and feed it to the goats." As you can see, I must be quite stern with her to keep her in line--make sure she knows her place--like the Americans say, "Which side of her bread must have butter on it."

Not long ago, I find her standing in front of mirror, wearing red mini-skirt and high-heeled shoes. For a few moments, I am thinking I stumble into the brothel in Chinatown where I sometimes spend Thursday afternoons. As you might imagine, after my libido subsides, it behooves me to inflict considerable trauma on the unruly woman. The arrogant bitch is calling the police on me. Ah, American police, you cannot trust them; they are worse than used camel dealers... but enough, that is a story for another time. Forgive my digression.


It is my desire, back in 2001, to obtain a suitable publisher for my book, which precipitates this story. It begins when I mail a query letter and three chapters of my book, in accordance with printed rules in my possession, to Middle East Classics, an American company, said to specialize in books by Islamic writers. About a week later, I am receiving the package back from the motherless pigs, unopened with a big red ink stamp on it, which says, "Due to increased security, we are accepting no unsolicited queries at this time." The audacity of the sneaky jackals.

I am not knowing the form which my revenge will take, but I become determined someone must pay dearly for this transgression. As they might say in America, "Don't fuck with Akbar Mousaad."

As I begin to ponder the possibilities, I am thinking if those sons of goat farmers get away with the shoddy business of refusing to open mail in the name of security, why not me? With a ten-dollar investment in a rubber stamp and a red ink pad I am thinking I can return my unwanted mail: utility bills, mortgage bill, donation requests, even tax bills--all unopened and more importantly all unpaid. Is it not unjust to ask a man to risk his life merely to pay money to capitalist thieves? I am thinking, is okay that Middle East Classics go unpunished for returning my query unopened--if I can make the other capitalist money dogs pay for the disrespect to which I am subjected.


For many months, I am happy as a sand flea in pubic hair when my plan meets with great success; I even stamp the late notices and return them unopened. Even Nadya observes the number in our checkbook grows larger and larger. I am thinking the extra money is causing deviant desires in Nadya when I catch her studying a Victoria's Secret sales catalog one day. I let it pass without inflicting pain on her. Last time the police are telling me, if Nadya calls once more, I am spending thirty days in the slammer--those treacherous infidel bastards. As they say in my country, "If a man sleeps with vipers, they most assuredly will bite him in the ass."


Akbar Mousaad, after a while, is finding his plan, which is working like a well-oiled pushcart until then, to be coming down on his head, like you say, "A hovel made of cards." He is being threatened by everyone. He is deprived of heat and light by the utility companies. Repo men try to sneak in while he is not home to take back his furniture and automobile; the mortgage company is threatening to take away his house--and I need not tell you, Nadya is impossible since they make void her charge cards. He is not knowing what to do. This land of Satan is making his life, as they say in America, "A living hell."


I am at last deciding to pay all the bills to get these jackals off my back. My finger is pained from hours of punching phone buttons in fruitless effort to speak with helpful persons. But they will not be placated--the harassment continues without abatement. Oh--sweet mother of Allah--the fear, the mental anguish, the sleepless nights.


One morning, just when I am thinking I can no longer bear such suffering, I read the Karachi Chronicle--my hometown newspaper--a Pakistani periodical I get delivered to my door for five bucks a week. Not bad, eh?

I spot an advertisement, which takes my interest. "Get sick from rancid goat meat in the marketplace?" it says. "Your neighbor's camel stomp on your sandal and break your foot? Slip on mule turd and split your head in a friend's stable? Don't let these careless, negligent acts go unavenged. Call 'Tough' Abdul Ahmed, specializing in tort law and personal fatwas. No injury or affront too large or too small. Remember, a bulging purse is your greatest vengeance."

I am not knowing what kind of help Abdul is able to provide, but I like his style, and am dialing him up. It is quite by accident I discover he is a second cousin on my mother's side. Small world, eh?... but I digress; that is a story for another time.

"My dear cousin Akbar," he says, "You come to the right watering trough on this one. I am knowing I can deliver you from your oppressors. And I make you a rich man in the process."

Because I am ignorant in matters of the law, I am putting myself completely in Abdul's hands--but only after some questions. I query if he belongs to the New Jersey Bar. "No," he is saying, "but makes no difference; I do court in Jersey many times and nobody checks my credentials."

"Abdul, I am thinking it quite ridiculous for court to make Akbar's creditors pay him money."

"No, No, No, you do not understand," Abdul says, "you are the victim; these jackals inflict pain and suffering on you by harassment. It is a willful act, not accident like old lady who scalds herself with hot cup of coffee between her legs in a car--and she gets eight million bucks. Trust me, you will see. And, because you are my cousin, I will do the whole thing on a contingency basis, which means I get nothing until you get your settlement.


Abdul is, indeed, a formidable and clever adversary in court. He fleeces every one of my enemies of many rupees. After Abdul's fees are paid, I am winding up with ten million dollars--not too shabby, eh?

Before leaving, Abdul says, "Akbar, because of your ethnicity, under the hate crime laws, we can now go for criminal indictments against the infidel executives of these companies. All I need do is convince a district attorney of criminal intent of which there is plenty to go around. Think of the ecstasy putting the motherless pigs in prison will add to your already exquisite revenge."

"How much will the legal fees for this undertaking cost me, Abdul?" I am asking him.

"I am guessing about half a million."

"Abdul, I am intrinsically a gentle man. Inflicting physical discomfort is not my style. What useful purpose would it serve?"

"Your pleasure, Akbar, only your pleasure. As they are saying in America, 'It is yours to make the call.' Abdul's motto, 'A satisfied client is his most important product'."


"Nadya, the limo to take us to Hillary's will be here at six o'clock sharp. Before you put on your clean chador, take a bath; you smell like a stable boy. Do like I say or I cut you up in little pieces and feed them to the mongooses." Ah, my Nadya, she is such a gentle, simple woman.


Middle East Classics, it turns out, is little more than a mom-and-pop shop and well within my means to purchase. Because I am now the boss, my book gets published very quickly.

Before I publish it, I am doing a major rewrite. It still exposes Salman Rushdie for the treasonous blasphemer I know him to be, but now it is telling mostly the story of my excellent ascent to wealth and power. It is available in major bookstores or at

I am almost forgetting. I change title of book. Is now Only in America.

Bucks County Writers Workshop