Shares in Creative Writing & MFA, Inc. fluctuated wildly on North American markets, causing a sharp drop in the valuation of the Commercial Poetry Product on news of the ongoing scandal engulfing the University of British Colombia and its bevy of Prize Winning Creative Writers. Accusations and counter accusations continued to circulate around disgraced Prize Winning Novelist and former Chair, Steven Gallbladder. Gallbladder, who was subject to accusations of – well, that’s something of a mystery, but they do seem to have involved allegations of sexual relations with a student and charges of bullying, favoritism, drinking beer, and other behaviours deemed unseemly by the Administration.
In a decisive move to deal with the accusations, the University invoked the Franz Kafka Trial Protocol from its policy on sexual harassment and other undesignated faculty crimes. It immediately suspended and then fired Gallbladder after ignoring various witnesses, actively avoiding due process, and muddying the waters as much as possible by organizing little group meetings to publicly repeat unproven allegations and allude to further unspecified additional complainants. A spokesperson for the University defended the decision to invoke the Kafka protocol. “They are writers, OK,” he stated. “It’s their territory. Kafka was a Creative Writer, too. It’s only fair. What are they complaining about? We could have invoked the Lewis Carroll protocol – first the verdict, then the trial – but we are merciful and malevolent – I mean benelovent. Ben . . , ben . . . – You know what I mean. Next question. . .”.
Gallbladder’s admission that he had sexual relations with his student led to the charges in the first place, although the charges eventually had nothing to do with the sexual relations he had with his student that he was never charged with either by the university or by the police and which resulted in his firing even though the Prosecutor – also known as the Independent Investigator – appointed by the University chose to ignore ancillary complainants in her fearless breaches of confidentiality in the interest of proving the serious allegations that remained unspecified but were really bad and threatened the “well-being of all members of our community.”
That well-being has been seriously affected, throwing CW&MFA, Inc. into a profound, existential crisis and instigating a civil war in the ranks of the usually self-satisfied, complacent Canlit Corporation. As one student creative writer explained, the stress was so intense, he could no longer write, creatively or otherwise. “I can’t write,” he said. “I was really looking forward to going to, like, creative writer’s festivals and winning prizes. Now that I can no longer write because I am so stressed out, it’s all over. My creativity is spoiled, ruined. I may never write again. I want a refund.”
In a curious twist, Gallbladder was found innocent of all the charges against him except for the redacted ones that no one can find out about. Hence the severity of his punishment. Several creative writers in the program, many of whom have won prizes, including several women, spoke up for Gallbladder implicitly suggesting that sex with students was no big deal if you are a Prize Winning Creative Writer.
Gallbladder, meanwhile, offered to write “I will not touch my students” 50,000 times on the Creative Writing Department blackboard as an alternative to having it etched into his flesh by a machine as is required by the Kafka Protocol. The University has yet to respond to Gallbladder’s offer, and so far has not returned our calls.
In a proactive gesture meant to protect the fictional integrity of its programs and calm jittery Creative Writing markets, CW&MFA, Inc. has asked that all its employees follow Gallbladder’s lead and find a blackboard where they, too, can write “I will not touch my students” many many times in hopes this will head off future threats to the well-being of the community, as well as avoid the loss of market shares to competitor, Avant-Garde Pro International, who in recent years has made serious incursions into MFA markets with their upgraded Poetix instruments.