“Conspiracy of Males” by Evan James Roskos is from Granta Online’s excellent New Voices series. To me this reads like a well-executed experimental sketch than a fully considered story, due mostly to Roskos’ use of the first person plural. The most recent, and most notable, use of the first person plural is Joshua Ferris’ And Then We Came To The End. But unlike Ferris, who used it to evoke a commiserative mood, Roskos uses it to underscore a sense of menace and paranoia:
“We hated your fat little face. We called you elephant. We called you Jupiter. We called you fat-ass. You asshole. Cocksucker. Dickhead. Shithead. Faggot. We beat you up in fifth grade, eight knees to your temple. You got detention because you were fatter than us. The principal, also the civics teacher, said we were too smart to start a fight with a big kid. How fair, how fair.”
A little unsettling, isn’t it? Definitely worth reading.