Title: Destroy All Monsters
Subtitle: A Complete Guide for Children
Author: Rene Farben
Date: 1895
Notes: First published by Scipion Pinel Press, 1895. Retranslated by Dr. Jeckil Kegloff and reprinted in 1999 by Love Bunni Press. Reprinted in 2018 by Enemy Combatant Publications.






“One of the oldest, most rigid, and seemingly instinctual thought-patterns is the figure of the monster. Instilled in us since childhood, the Monster has imprinted a fearful image so compelling, so deeply buried in our consciousness that we're at once deeply moved by it and rarely aware of its power over us. This children's DIY guide offers some methods for DESTROYING THEM. This new edition, dredged up from sedimented depths at least twice, René Farben's Destroy All Monsters is perfect nighttime reading.”



Monsters do exist. Sometimes they disguise themselves as piles of filthy laundry huddled in the corner of your bedroom or as dancing shadows cast by the overhanging tree that brushes against your window pane, but do not be fooled. Those noises that can easily be explained away by rational men are in fact Monsters. For Monsters have many allies, take on many deceptive disguises, and have paid out many high-priced bribes just so they can eat you right up.

Even if they are unable to get to you tonight, Monsters are extremely patient and they will wait. Hiding under your bed, drooling and gnashing their terrible teeth. They will crowd into your closet, scraping their claws on the back of the door, their bellies growling. They will creep about in the hall outside your bedroom, twiddling their tendrils just to pass the time. They may even be hanging from inside the lamp shade, thinking about how juicy you might taste. Monsters are out there, waiting for you to fall asleep or make some terrible mistake which would allow them to pounce on you, devouring you whole and picking between their fangs with your tiny white bones.

Your parents might inform you in various convincing tones, that Monsters are just a "figment of your imagination" or that "there are no such creatures as Monsters". But, no matter how reassuring your parents might sound, do not ever believe them, for if they dare to tell you these things, they more than likely are collaborating with the Monsters to get rid of you.

After all, children such as yourself, are a horrible bother, always making noise, needing to be fed, and constantly asking all sorts of questions. They probably figured out, with you out of the picture, their lives might be normal and trouble-free the way it used to be before you plopped out. So your parents, if they say these dastardly lies to you, are working with the Monsters to get rid of you once and for all.



In which it is explained where Monsters came from and why are they out to get you.

Well, a very long time ago, children were allowed to run and play all day long. No one told them they could not climb on rocks or open all the closed doors or lay on the grass just looking up at the clouds. No one felt the need to dress the children up or force them to listen to cranky grown-up lectures or attend school or even sit still and be quiet. Children were free to do as they pleased.

Then one afternoon, something terrible happened. The Monsters, dressed in suits and ties smelling of perfume and too much wit, invaded from the West. The Monsters brought with them promises for the grown-ups and horrible plans for the children. The promises promised to the grown-ups were rather silly and made life a whole lot worse for everyone involved, even though the grown-ups will definitely tell you otherwise. The promises all dealt with the accumulation of great wealth, easier jobs, and security from evils that no one dare discuss. The grown-ups were now to be known as "Adults" with certain rights and privileges; such as having to go to work at certain times each day, doing the same job every day, and being allowed to tell certain other grown-ups, as well as ALL children, what they should or should not be doing with their time.

As for the children, the Monsters made them stop playing all day by telling the grown-ups that such things were not the things that "proper" or "polite" children do. What the children need, all the Monsters cooed, was to be treated as children who do not know anything and must be taught to act accordingly.

So the Monsters started schools, where the children were taught how to sit still, listen to their elders, and never interrupt (this last point was a great big deal for the Monsters who really enjoy listening to themselves talk). The children did not like any of this new system at all, and neither would you. But if a child did not listen to a Monster or tried to run and play all day, that child was eaten right up.

Well, that would be enough to make even me scared, seeing before my very eyes my friend eaten right up. So as you can understand most of the children listened to the Monsters because they did not want to be eaten right up.

As time went on, the Monsters started to look more and more like normal grown-ups or maybe it was that the normal grown-ups began to look more and more like the Monsters, who can say for sure. The children grew up listening to and obeying the Monsters' lies as well as sitting really still most of the day. When these children became grown-ups and started to have children of their own, it was only assumed that these new children would suffer the same fate that their parents had suffered as children. And with this the vicious cycle, which has continued until today, was started.

You should now realize that part of the Monsters’ fiendish plot was to make children forget what it was like before the Monsters came, as well as to crush the imagination and freedom of childhood. Monsters hate children because children ask too many questions about silly things that Monsters do not care about. Plus Monsters find children excessively noisy and "under foot" too much, which is just a bunch of fancy words which mean that children are always getting in the way.

Monsters like to have everything in order, very neat and tidy with everyone in agreement about everything, no messes or loose ends. Monsters hate, more than anything, explaining themselves, because Monsters like to believe that everything they do is always and in all ways right. Or at least THEY like to think so.

That is why today, this very night, Monsters are planning to ambush you and gobble you right up, because you are a perfect little child who asks too many bothersome questions and won't do as you're told. And because of these things you can defeat all the Monsters who are out to get you.


In which what Monsters look like and what they do is explained.

There are two distinct types of Monsters, those which actually are disgusting, drooling messes and those which disguise their true despicableness under elaborate and expensive costumes.

Within these two categories exist numerous sub- divisions (many too many to list in any detail here, so we will concern ourselves with only the few most common subgroups, okay?)

Let's begin with the disgusting foul smelling, dripping looking Monsters, since these are the ones you will be fighting until you are considerably older and somewhat stronger.

These gross, disgusting Monsters, the ones that hunt you down at night and do not wear fancy disguises, are the most fearsome on account of their terrific appetites and fiendish plans. These Monsters will stop at nothing until they have sunk their rows and rows of pointy teeth into your belly or arms.

Luckily, these Monsters are the easiest to beat because they are exposed and cannot rely upon the help of other more powerful and disguised Monsters. This is because a Monster in disguise is afraid that a grown-up, dedicated to killing disguised Monsters, would recognize it and kill it right on the spot.

Some of the more common types of these Monsters can be divided into two groups: Those That Hide In Your Room and Those That Lurk In The Hallways or Outside Your Windows.

The Monsters that hide in your room usually do so by creeping under the bed or jumping in the closet just as the lights go on. You will be able to detect a Monster's presence, say under the bed, by listening closely for any rumblings or watching for any unusual lumps or bumps in your mattress.

If Monsters have infested your closet they rarely do so alone, so listen for giggles or annoyed complaining about being too crammed or crowded. Simply assume that there are Monsters out in the hall or outside your windows, because nine times out of ten there are.

Avoid going into the hall altogether. The closed window will stop most Monsters, for they won't break glass for fear of making a nasty mess, which as we all know Monsters hate.

Most of these Monsters, while terrifically terrifying and repulsive in appearance and overly noisy and fearsome, are in all actuality extremely cowardly. The majority of these Monsters overcompensate their physical weakness with traits and behaviors that they think will scare and intimidate children. They hope to stop you with fright or make you cry, for a crying child is an easy dinner and somehow a better tasting one at that!

So no matter how many rows of drooling, gnashing teeth are bared, nor what leftovers are clinging or dangling between their large, razor sharp fangs; no matter what bottom muck outhouse stink you smell; take no notice either of the grumbling, bubbling slurps nor the tethered dog growls, for these are only simple tricks Monsters play hoping to freeze little children with frightful tears.

Just remember that if they spend all that time trying to scare you, then they are not really that powerful. It is the Monsters that do not employ these tactics that gobble you right up without you even realizing that they are Monsters, until too late!

If you want to see one of those powerful Monsters right now, go into a school or find a policeman. All teachers are Monsters in disguise and so are all policemen.

All you have to do to find a Monster is ask someone you suspect of being a Monster a silly question, talk when you want to, or get up and move about as you please. Monsters will scream at you, look at you funny, or try to eat you right up.

There are Monsters hanging around outside or in stores attempting to sell you things or walking back and forth to work. If anyone tries to get you to buy anything or tells you that you can't play there or even to quiet down, you can bet that person is a Monster in Disguise.

The most dangerous Monsters, though, are the ones that hide underneath uniforms. Disguised as policemen or crossing guards, they are walking around making sure that no one acts like a child or becomes too rowdy.

They are allowed to swallow you right up in the middle of the street, even in the middle of busy afternoon traffic, for they carry powerful authority which means everyone is taught to look away or not get involved.

So be very careful around people in uniforms. Do not let them know that you are blarneyed from staying up all night fighting Monsters. Do not let on that you know that your teacher or that policeman is really a Monster. You are not strong enough yet to beat on them, so let the grown-ups who are at war with the Monsters take care of those guys. You, after all, have quite a deal to worry about anyway.


In which it is explained how one goes about beating monsters.

There are twelve easy steps to remember when you are doing battle with hairy, gruesome, teeth-baring Monsters. They are:

1. Stay Awake. If you suspect that there is a Monster lurking about inside your room, the worst thing you could possibly do is fall asleep. Not only will the Monster be able to sneak up on you, but you will not be able to defend yourself properly if you have to waste precious time waking up. Plus Monsters are, after all, really cowardly and afraid of children, that is why they hide and wait. If you stay awake it is very possible that the Monsters will never work up enough courage to make an outright attack.

2. Leave A Light On. Not only will this help you discover where the Monsters might be lurking, but it will also let you see them if they do attempt to attack. Leaving the light on will also let the Monsters see that you know where they are hiding, which un- nerves them right away. The Monsters will be able to see that you are not frightened by them and that you are ready to beat on them if they should attempt to eat you right up. It is a well known fact that Monsters do not like well-lit rooms because Monsters cannot see that well in the light.

3. Be Curious And Inquisitive. If that pile of filthy laundry looks to you to be a Monster crouching, go right up to it. Poke it or ask it a few simple questions, such as "Excuse me, but are you a Monster?" Or "Why does water go down the drain in the bathtub instead of just sitting around like in the pool?" If that pile of filthy laundry is a Monster in hiding, that Monster will be so mad at your direct questioning that he will jump up, revealing himself for what he really is - a hungry, stupid Monster. No Monster can stand direct questioning, it's one of the things they hate the most.

4. Carry A Large Pointy Stick Or A Loaded Pea Shooter. For some reason, these are the best weapons to use against Monsters. The large pointy stick allows you a reasonably safe distance at which to poke and whack at Monsters. A pea shooter is even better, for it allows you to hurl powerful peas from the fuzzy warmness of your bed at the Monsters, putting their eyes out or painfully lodging underneath their scaly skin. You don't want to get too close to Monsters for they will be bigger and somewhat quicker than you in direct hand-to-claw combat.

5. Call For Your Mommy. This should be used only in dire emergencies, such as when you discover you are horrendously out-numbered like a quadrillion to one or if you are somehow caught off guard. Do not expect help in any other way from your mommy other than momentarily scaring off the Monsters, allowing you time to regroup. Most of the time, she will have been sleeping with your daddy or fighting off Monsters of her own and will probably be tired and cranky. Never tell her that you have Monster problems, because it is very possible that she is working with the Monsters and would not come the next time you might need her. Instead ask for a cup of water or a cookie; this will buy you more time, for the Monsters might not attack if they think she might be coming back.

6. Carry A Teddy Bear Or Blanket. No Monster likes the sight of a cute furry teddy bear. Most Monsters hate cute things and will not go near them. It helps if you find your teddy bear an interesting person to talk to, for then the teddy bear can help you stay awake. It might also be useful to instruct your teddy bear in the ancient arts of kung-foo fighting. This way the odds won't be so uneven when you and your teddy bear are confronted by a quadrillion Monsters. Most Monsters would rather run away than have to fight a cute stuffed bear, anyway. A blanket is useful for it can serve as a cape, a disguise, or as a whip if twirled around and knotted.

7. Prepare Escape Routes. Having hiding spots or places to run to are always smart and safe things to have in the ready. Not only will such things confuse the dim-witted Monsters, but hiding spots will also give you the chance to surprise the Monsters when they come hunting after you. Who knows, not every battle will be easy, so it is best to be prepared for the worst. Running Away is a time honored, well-established tradition of childhood. Honor it accordingly and use it well.

8. When Surrounded Or Almost Beaten - Set Your Bedroom On FIRE. Monsters hate fire, especially fires started by children. In fact, Monsters hate fires so very much that they are the ones who first thought up the idea of having Firemen who put fires out instead of just allowing them to bum. You see, Monsters bum rather easily. Plus fire is much too bright and hurts Monsters' weak night-vision eyes. You must practice setting fires, quickly and easily. You must also learn how to control or not to control fire. The easiest and best way to practice fire starting is in your backyard on a sunny, summer afternoon. Just set a small fire, at first, using stolen matches from the kitchen or your father's desk. Gather some dry leaves, scraps of paper, or tiny twigs, set them in a pile and toss on a match or two. Eventually, experiment with paper balls and bits of coal or other household fuels.

This is very important: Most grown-ups, Monsters or not, will try and tell you that setting or playing with fire is extremely dangerous and potentially deadly. Just remember that you are fighting for your life, so you must understand every defensive technique possible.

9. Never Fear. Even when confronted with a quadrillion tough-to-beat Monsters, never let them know that you are afraid of them or are worried about getting eaten right up. Fear just encourages Monsters to think they are more powerful than they might actually be. Monsters thrive on fear, so they actually try to scare you. One of the most common tricks used by the tiniest and one of the weakest Monsters is to blow themselves up so full of hot air, then bounce up and down while groaning and moaning. It is a rather disgusting and disturbing display. But, if you just stand there, waving your pointy stick through the air, the Monster will deflate and run away.

So never fear. Monsters are never as fearsome as they might first appear to be, after a few good whacks on the head most of them are beaten and run away.

10. Attack Before You Are Attacked. If you are in doubt over whether or not a pile of filthy laundry is a Monster, it is best just to whack it. Remember it is always better to get in the first hit. Most Monsters aren't that tough, as we have seen, but it is better to have weakened or surprised them before the real bat- ting might actually begin.

11. Wear Pajamas And Slippers. This will give you extra protection, not only from gashing teeth and ripping claws, but such garments will also protect your flesh if you are forced to start a fire. The slippers will give you extra traction if you have to run away or jump down a wall. It is also harder for Monsters to sniff out certain types of fabric, so that will come in handy while you are hiding.

12. Believe. Monsters do exist and they are out to get you. Never forget this, for the minute that you start to doubt this fact, the Monsters will see you as easy prey and swoop down to eat you right up. Your best defense in the war against the Monsters is your belief in the creepy-crawly side to everyday life. This belief will help you to recognize all the evil slime that is constantly oozing around you, trying to fool you into thinking you're safe, like the grown-ups believe. It is, after all, possible to grow up without ever stopping for one single instant believing that Monsters are real and are, in fact, out to get you.


In which we say Good-bye and Good Luck!

It is a dangerous and filthy, no good world in which we live. As a child you, more than most, understand what lengths one must sometimes go to in order to simply survive - whether it be temper tantrums or whining hysterical fits thrashing on the floor.

You are engaged in nothing short of a total war. Your very existence is at stake. What we have suggested here has been a brief, and scant, outline of some of the tactics we have discovered useful in our own continuing fight.

As we said, once you start fighting monsters, once you refuse to buckle under their stupid, petty authority, you can never stop. There are no surrender options presented (which you are fully aware of, already, we are confident).

So by no means use this as your only guide, your sole means of engagement. Your Imagination and Inventiveness are your best and last hope at staying alive.

Never give up or despair! There are others out there staying up all night and throwing hysterical fits of temper upon the floor.

We wish you all the peril and success available to someone of your size and stature!

Good-bye and Good Luck.