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Friday, October 30, 2015

Dirk Destroyer Part 5 Chapter 2 part 1

This is the 5th installment of an endless serialization of a novel that was never meant for prime time (unless you read this between 8 and 10PM – some say 11.) I’m sure there’s a way to search out the first four parts, but blog navigation has never been my strong suit.
Chapter 2
Politically Incorrect Smoking Protagonist Meets Other Folk

The town of Gyno wasn’t really a town. It was a loose grouping of settlements, scattered across a valley. Each grouping was just two or three buildings, all with small doors so that sheep couldn’t rush in when people came and went. The Ceasarian section of town was in a curved gash between two hills. I walked through the tobacco fields, occasionally running across a ram or ewe experimentally nibbling on a tobacco leaf.
“Sick, sick, sick,” said Swampy. Sheep and tobacco didn’t get along. They might eat a leaf, but they never kept it. Only one thing smells worse than healthy sheep – sick sheep.
Getting through the field, the Ceasaran homestead came into view. It was a pretty little settlement, and I was happy to see it, but getting to the door was going to be a problem.
“Sheep,” said Swampy.
“Yup,” I said. The house, work shed and barn were all surrounded by hundreds of sheep. They were especially packed around the doors.
How do you wade through a huge flock of sheep without bugging any of them?
“Lotta wool,” said Swampy.
A man was sitting on a rock at the edge of the flock. It was a pleasantly warm day, but he was still wearing a one hundred percent cotton overcoat.
“Don’t bug the sheep,” he said predictably.
“How do I get to the door?”
“Don’t care,” said the man, “just don’t bug the sheep.”
“How long have they been here?”
“The sheep?” asked the man. “I’m not sure. Maybe a week.”
“Are the Ceasarans all right?”
“Don’t care,” said the man.
“Well can I call and see if they’re all right?”
“I wouldn’t,” said the man. “It might bug the sheep.”
“Stupid Spy,” said Swampy, and I had to agree. I cupped my hands around my mouth and shouted. “Are you all right in there?”
The man jumped up from his rock. “I better report this!” he said and hurried off. I was just about to shout a second time when what looked to be a second story window opened in the house.
“Is that you, Mister Elmer.”
“Yes Mister Ceasaran,” I said.
You might think we were being formal here, calling each other mister, but we both had our reasons. Ceasaran called me Mister Elmer, because I was the brother of a very important, albeit infamous man. I called Ceasaran, Mister because I’d dealt with so many Ceasarans over the years, that I’d given up trying to remember their first names. He was probably Marko, Mario, or Martin. The Ceasarans almost always named their boys a name that began with M, and those three were the most common. I’d had dealings with a couple of Martins, a handful of Markos, and several Marios. Curiously, I never dealt with Marias, or Martinas. I don’t know if the entire tobacco industry was patriarchal, or just the Ceasarans.
“Are you all right in there?” I asked again.
“We are dying,” Ceasaran replied, “otherwise, we are fine. You’ve come to get cigars?”
“Yes,” I said, “but that doesn’t seem so important now. Maybe I should do something to stop you from dying.”
“That is very kind of you, Mister Elmer. You have always been a kind man, but Maria and I are old now, and there is very little food. We would have to get around to dying eventually, so there’s no reason to put it off.”
“I’d be happy to go buy you some food,” I offered.
“You don’t understand,” said Ceasaran. “I don’t mean that there is very little food in the house. I mean there is very little food at all. Tobacco is not considered important enough, so we don’t get food.”
“Not important?”
“Mister Elmer, most years since my grandfather’s day you have been our only customer. Sometimes a teen asks for a cigar that blows up, or a man with a new baby buys some to give away. We had a politician buy an especially durable one for his mistress, but we didn’t ask if it was for smoking. Most of the time, it’s just you.”
“I didn’t realize that business was so bad.”
“Oh no,” said Ceasaran. “The business is not bad. You are always very generous. We have always been a wealthy family because of you.”
“So why can’t you get food?”
Ceasaran shook his head. “It is not a matter of money; it is a matter of importance. The sheep can’t eat tobacco, and the MOIST people do not smoke cigars. We do not contribute to the thirty-fifth idea.”
“But what about your children?”
“You did not notice, Mister Elmer? Maria and I have no children. We are also very old – not like you are old, but very old.”
I probably should have noticed that. It just seems like you barely notice someone and they grow old and die. The only reason the Ceasaran’s stuck in my mind is that I’d done business with fifty or so of them, and they tended to look alike.
“Hey,” I said, “I have a couple algae bars,” and I zipped open my fanny pack.
“Baaaaaahhhh!” A wall of wool rushed at me.
“No,” I said to the surprised sheep. “You can’t have these. They are for the Ceasaran family.”
“Let them have the algae bars,” said Ceasaran. “As I am dying now, I admit that I am not such a believer in the thirty-fifth idea, but Maria and I have both tasted your algae bars. If we are going to die, I would rather we did so without our mouths tasting like fertilizer.”
“Crappy bars,” said Swampy as I threw the bars to get the sheep to move away from me. This gave me a chance to get much closer to the window. I saw Ceasaran smile at me. He was an old man.
“Wait a moment,” he said. He must have been standing on something, because he lowered himself very carefully from the window height. While he was gone, the sheep wandered back over to me. The sniffed around me and my fanny pack looking for more food, then gave me a look that showed their annoyance when they found nothing. Swampy landed on a ewe and crapped on her.
Finally, Ceasaran’s face reappeared in the window. He held out a bag. It was too far for me to reach, so I used telekinesis to bring it to me, and then did the same with the gold and silver lumps to Ceasaran. A bead of sweat broke out on my brow. Dirk was always better at telekinesis than I was. For some reason it was easier to move stuff in the ground than it was in the air.
The old man took the metal and shook his head. “It is the last sale for Ceasarean tobacco. We were in business over a thousand years.”
“I am very sad to see you go,” I said.
“It has been an honor to know you, Mister Elmer. You have…”

Yes, I’m ending the excerpt here. It could be that Mister Ceasarian (not to be confused with Caesarian,) had nothing left to say. I could also be that I’m an SOB that sadistically ends an excerpt in the middle of a sentence.
Anyone vote for both?
To find out web in (well tune in doesn’t work,) next Friday!

Here’s the vid.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Scary Food

Growing up in the 60s, Halloween was all about candy. You were thrilled if you got a full-sized candy bar (unless it was Almond Joy or Mounds,) and you prayed that nobody put a homemade caramel popcorn ball in your bag to mutate into a candy wrapper giganto monster by the time you got home.
But other than the giganto monster, and the rumors of hidden razor blades in the candy, Halloween food wasn’t really about scary.
Witches teeth? Maybe scary if you’re a dentist, or the tooth fairy, but to us kids – nothin’.
Things have changed in the last five decades.
Halloween is more of a holiday now, and less of a candy grab.  It's more about adults and less about children.  It's less about Three Musketeers bars and more about edible body parts.

It requires a lot of thought.
   But what is the cerebral without a little heart as well?
   Finger food isn't enough.
   You need put your whole arm into it.
   Can't you see?
   Modern Halloween food has to have some bite to it.  But don't worry...
   You'll be fine as long as you keep your head.
   All kinds of creepy food ideas are birthed at Halloween.
   Though some might not be appropriate for young children.
   Or house pets.
   Aquatic house pets.
   Exotic house pets...
   All kinds of house (ugh) pets.
   Don't let it gross you out.
   Neither hurl, nor howl.
   Festive medical assistance is standing by.
   To help you scab over those rough patches.
   And put you all back together, safe and warm.
   snug as a bug,
   In a rug.

   Some gross food traditions do go back to my generation

Friday, October 23, 2015

Dirk Destroyer part 4 Chapter 1

This is Chapter 1 of the novel, Dirk Destroyer's Less Destructive Brother, which means that lots of stuff came before it that you may or may not want to look at in previous posts. This story is a satire, which is not a concept I really understand except it keeps me from being sued.

Chapter 1

Boiler Plate Opening Chapter to Novella
It was a typical morning. I awoke on the dirt. It wasn’t so bad. Long ago, I’d learned how to make the earth soft, like a fine mattress. I sat up and looked around.
A ram and ewe were standing by a small patch of stinkweed. It was the closest thing to grass in sight and the ram was eyeing me as if he thought I might fight him for his precious stinkweed. The ewe was munching placidly. Swampy landed on a rock next to me.
Need fish?” said Swampy. He said it as a question, as if he was offering me fish, though I don’t think that was his intent. Swampy was a swamprat bird, a remarkably ugly creature, which normally would have the capacity for a few words only. Swampy had a large vocabulary, largely because he was about half as old as I was. I think Dirk did something to him, though I have no idea what. Dirk is cleverer than I am, and though neither of us is magical, we’ve learned to do a few things over the years.
Need fish?” said Swampy again. When he says that around some people, they feel obligated to go and catch a fish for Swampy, like he was a sheep, or something. I know that Swampy is not offering to fish for me, and he should know I won’t fish for him. I don’t particularly like Swampy, though I’ve known him longer than any other being but Dirk, and I’ve spent a lot more time with Swampy than Dirk.
The stupid rat-bird won’t leave me alone; I have no idea why.
Stay with Elmer,” says Swampy as if he’s read my mind.
Wonderful,” I grumble. I focus on the dirt, bacteria, and other unuseful organisms clinging to my body since I fell asleep. After a few seconds, it all falls away. Swampy swoops down and feeds on a worm that must have spent the night with me.
Well now, I’m clean, and you’re fed,” I say to Swampy – not that I’m looking to start up a conversation with the rat-bird, but I guess it’s better than talking to yourself. “Now it’s time for my breakfast.”
I squat down so that I can lay my palms flat against the earth. I concentrate on vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, proteins and fats. I feel my body begin to absorb the nutrients, until something buts me in the back.

It’s the ram. He’s looking at me as if it’s my job to give him anything he wants. I feel like punching him between the horns, but you never know where Moist might show up to enforce the thirty-fifth idea, so I move away submissively. Swampy flies by and farts in the ram’s face.
At times, Swampy isn’t such bad company.
One of the advantages of living out in the open is that you have nothing to defend. Sure, the sheep were annoying, but they weren’t a threat. They couldn’t take anything from me because all I had were my clothes and whatever I could fit in my fanny pack.
I wandered over the rise that had once been a grassy bluff. The soil was loose and sandy now, with an erosion ditch that led down to the river. How long had it been that way? From the height of the rise I could see quite a ways. I saw lots of sheep, lambs playing, ewes clumped in groups as if they had anything to fear now that nearly all the wolves were dead, two rams were butting each other across the river, probably over a large group of ewes nearby, though maybe over a patch of short grass. There was surprisingly little grass.
How long has it been this way, Swampy,” I asked. The rat-bird had followed me, as it always did.
Need fish?” said Swampy.
A single worm isn’t much when you’re a rat-bird, I guess. I was still hungry too. The ram had interrupted my breakfast, and river soil is rich in nutrients. Swampy flew ahead as I made my way down the rise.
The river was muddy; filled with silt. There must have been some flooding downstream, though I couldn’t remember any particularly heavy rain. I didn’t notice rain much since I learned the secret to repelling it. It was a pretty simple trick – one of the first I learned when I was only three or four hundred years old. Every once in a while I let the rain drench me; just to remember how it felt.
I knelt by the river. Swampy waddled over to join me, his greasy wings flailing, and his seven rat-tails stirring up the sand behind him. He stared at me with one gray and puce eyeball. Birds don’t stare at you straight ahead. He didn’t need to say anything, I knew what he wanted. I thought about him farting at the ram and laughed. I leaned over and dangled my fingers in the water. It took longer than usual to attract a fish – it must have been all the silt. It wasn’t very big.
Swampy pounced. That would keep him quiet for a while.
I imagined that my body might still be able to digest fish, but I didn’t try to catch another. I just put my hand flat in the river shallows and soaked up nutrients. It was pretty poor for river soil. Maybe there was some natural disaster going on that I didn’t know about. Plagues, famines, earthquakes, floods – they didn’t affect me much anymore. The first few were exciting, but after you live through a hundred or so, it’s kind of like diarrhea, go about your business and it passes after a short while.
I wasn’t hungry anymore. I reached into my fanny pack for a cigar and noticed that I was down to two. It was a good thing that sheep didn’t like the tobacco plant. I’d have a hard time obeying idea thirty-five if flocks started threatening my cigar supply.
Not surprisingly, I was short on matches too. One of the matches was wet. I pulled it out and smelled it. It smelled like sheep urine.
How had a sheep managed to pee into my fanny pack and onto one, but only one, match?
I was just glad the other matches were all right. I once spent a couple centuries trying to figure out how Light Bringers made fire come out of their fingertips. It would be a useful skill to have, but I couldn’t learn the trick. I asked Lenny Bruise to teach me once and he made fire come out of his middle finger.
Flick – you, Elmer,” he said or something like that. I can’t quite remember exactly what it was.
I guess that meant no. Maybe Light Bringing wasn’t a skill, but actually magic. I always expected magic to be more dramatic.
Well Swampy,” I said, “if I don’t want to run out of cigars, I better go see the Ceasarans.”
Going to town,” said Swampy.

I fished the earth for gold or silver. It’s a lot like soaking up nutrients, but I had to stop the mineral before it entered my body. There was still plenty of precious metal in the ground, and it only took a few minutes before I had a decent sized wad of silver, and a smaller one of gold which I put in my fanny pack. I did a similar thing with river algae, drawing it up into a couple of rough bar-shaped lumps. I pushed the moisture out of the bars, along with any harmful bacteria. Algae bars might not taste good, but if there was a famine in the land, one of these would keep a body alive for a day or two. I wanted to keep the Ceasaran family alive. They were the only cigar-making family I knew, and had been selling me cigars for… well, quite a while.
I didn’t bother asking Swampy if he was coming. Of course he was coming. The stupid rat-bird never left me alone.

I might mention here that I created the character Swampy before I ever saw Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs, though I imagine the screenplay writer had the concept first.
Sometimes muses mess with us like that. Here's a clip from the movie.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Tender Vitals

Tender Vitals
by Headley Hauser

"Look!" said Dander. "There it is again. They named a candy after you, Skittles!"
Skittles pouted. "It's not named for me. There are lots of fairies named Skittles."
"But not near this Seven Eleven! Look, some of the candies are green like your eyes, some of them are yellow like your teeth, and some of them are red like the color your cheeks get when you're angry."

"Stay back in the flower bed!" scolded Skittles. "A human will see you - or worse, a cat!"
Dander gave a little jump at the mention of the C word. There were a lot more of them now, and they weren't staying in houses and getting fed small cans of meat and meat byproducts; they were out hunting for birds, rodents... and fairies!

"A-ha!" laughed Skittles, "worried about your tender vitals, I see."
"The humans never should have named their cat food that. The cans turn every content calico into a fairy hunter."
"The humans named the cat food Vittles," said Skittles.
"Close enough!"
"And they don't think cats can read, or even understand their language."
"They don't think cats can read," said Dander. "They don't think cats can turn door knobs, or drive an SUV, or load and fire an M16. Humans aren't very bright."

"Most cats prefer Uzis. They're easier to carry."
"It's not like the old days when we twitched our wings and flew out of the cat’s reach."
Skittles bobbed her antennae. "It's hard to out-jump a nine millimeter bullet traveling at four hundred meters per second."
"I'll give the humans one thing," said Dander, "Their veterinarians help slow the rate of fairy-folk genocide."
"Yeah,” said Skittles. “They get those cats right in the bob-o-links.” Like most fairies, Skittles chose her euphemisms from among the names of small flowers and birds.
"Shush," said Dander in a whisper. "There's a tabby at five o'clock."

"What's she packing?"
"It looks like a Kalashnikov."
The two fairies hid among the marigolds. Marigold scent was unpleasant, but it masked their fairy airy from the hunting feline. The cat must have heard them, or seen movement because she was staring at the marigolds. Three banana clips hung from the cat's collar, and she wore a small medal with the word, "Neverland" inscribed at the top. This was no casual Sylvester, but seasoned campaigner. A lot of Tink's best fairies bought it in the catastrophe of '07.

A mole scampered across the path, catching the cat's attention. The calico released the Russian-made automatic weapon's safety and followed after the small rodent.
"You know," said Dander after the danger had passed, "maybe we fairy-folk should consider a new career as house pets."
"Like the canaries? You want to live in a cage?"

"We could avoid cages by using a litter box, and making ourselves useful. We could help them find their house keys after the imps steal them. They might even feed us Skittles!"
"Very funny," said Skittles, "but count me out. Humans claim to love their pets but how is it that the world is filled with homeless cats? Remember what happened to Charlotte’s 4H friend, the pig. Instead of feeding us sweets, the humans are more likely to feed our Tender Vitals to their cats."
You’re right,” said Dander. “We should stick to fairy stuff. You go paint a water stain of the Virgin Mary on that Seven Eleven, and I’ll grab the candy while the humans are staring at it.”

The moments before that cats landed in Neverland 2007.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Dirk Destroyer part 3 Chapter One part 2

If you're just tuning in - or whatever it's called in a blog, this is the third installment of a serialization of Dirk Destroyer's Less Destructive Brother.  You can go back to last week (or even the week before) and figure out what's going on - or not.

The trouble got more serious a century later when Uriculous Wisehind (now known as Uriculous the Great) became the head archivist, high priest, and translator of the Thirty-Seven Really Good Ideas.

If you’re following my story, you may have figured out (especially if you’re Phasian and good at math) that we were down to just one idea – Number Thirty-Five. Now, in my early centuries I didn’t pay much attention to Idea Thirty-Five. Dirk thought Idea Thirty-Five was meant to be a joke and even told Uriculous Wisehind that he thought the entire Thirty-Seven Really Good Ideas began as a put-on. When a high priest of the Thirty-Seven Really Good Ideas is down to only one good idea, he’s usually not inclined to pass it off, but it did sound like… Well, you decide.

Idea Number Thirty-Five: Thou shalt not bugger the sheep.

Having the authority of translation, Uriculous Wisehind decided that the one remaining Really Good Idea had been garbled over time. He proclaimed that the true form of Idea Number Thirty-Five was (and now would be again); Thou shalt not bug the sheep.

The wool industry took a big hit that day. International Mutton had a convenient fire and collected a very lucrative insurance settlement that set the owners (but not the workers) up for life. Uriculous Wisehind, whose father sat on the board of Cotton and Linen Inc., made no apology to the thousands of displaced shepherds, spinners, weavers, and cleavers. “A translator’s job,” said Uriculous “is to find the truth and not worry about the economic implications.” Wisehind found his truth accompanied by three bags full of donations from Big Cattle, Big Fish, and Big Chicken.

Dirk figured that Big Pig must have stiffed Wisehind because there was talk of further translating Thirty-Five: Thou shalt not bug the sheep or the swine. People of any given generation will tolerate only so much revisionist translation. Wisehind wasn’t known for his discretion, but even he knew that people deprived of their morning bacon could get ugly. There was also pressure from politicians who were inordinately fond of their pork. Industrial animosity could possibly have been avoided by changing the imperative to, Thou shalt not pork the sheep, but the suggestion was vetoed, and The Idea remained: Thou shalt not bug the sheep.

Dirk didn’t like the new translation. For one thing, Idea Thirty-Five had always been (and “always” was starting to mean something for Dirk and me) his favorite idea to quote out loud at solemn occasions.

“Wise-hiney’s translation is no fun,” he told me.

“Maybe if you said it in a funny voice.”

“Tried it – it’s just not the same.”
Complications arose when the sheep wised up – at least as much as sheep can – sheep aren’t that bright. After a few years of human deference, sheep realized that the shepherd’s crook was in the other… appendage, and they got downright haughty.

“Who would have thought sheep could be so arrogant?” I asked Dirk.

“What kind of people do arrogant best,” he answered, “intelligent, or stupid?”

“Good point.”

Farmers started losing their homes by mistakenly leaving their doors open near sheep. The wooly beasts just flocked to open doors and helped themselves to whatever they found inside – grain, wine, lingerie. Women’s unmentionables became the preferred headgear for sheep planet-wide. Efforts to remove the invaders were met with stiff punishment by the Ministry Of Innocent Sheep Toleration (MOIST), a suddenly well-funded police organization with license to maim anyone who so much as giggled at a lamb with panties on its head. MOIST organized massive wolf hunts, and the lupine species was nearly eliminated. Those that survived remained in hiding, except during political conventions, when ravenous packs descended from the hills and tore apart the more obnoxious politicians to the cheers of a grateful public.

Dirk never worried about giving offence to man or ram. When he felt like laughing, he laughed, but in spite of MOIST’s efforts, he proved very difficult to maim. He took to roaming the country-side dressed in wool, wielding a shepherd’s crook and a pair of clippers. Of course, he had to wander the country-side because the sheep, seeking a better grade of both liquor and ladies’ unmentionables, had over-run many cities. Phasian cities were spared. The mathematically gifted inhabitants simply fenced off all urban areas where there were no sheep.

Dirk was making himself a menace, poking wooly behinds with his stick and teaching impressionable children to laugh when they heard the sound, “Baah.”

So MOIST and Dirk began a war. Dirk played pranks on MOIST, like sewing wool linings into their coats when they weren’t looking. (Dirk is a really fast sewer. It’s nothing magical, just a skill he picked up.) MOIST unsuccessfully but continually attempted to sever Dirk’s arms, legs, fingers, toes, and… Anyway, I tried to stay clear of it. Unlike my brother, I’ve never been one to make waves, but I could tell that all the conflict was wearing on Dirk. Then the ancient and venerable high priest (and honorary head of MOIST) Uriculous Wisehind made this prophesy on his deathbed.
There will come a man after me who will bring light to Planet Two. He will cast the Destroyer into oblivion for all time. You will know him by the light he brings. Flames will sprout from his fingers. Watch and follow the Light Bringer!

Sure enough, days, weeks, or years (when you live this long, you lose sense of time) after Uriculous’s death a Light Bringer arose. His name was Luxcurious Bidden. He had a great quantity of lovely flowing locks of hair, neatly trimmed, shampooed, highlighted, and stapled to his otherwise bald head. As the high priest/prophet predicted, flames, or rather a flame, two inches long sprang from his fingers – well, finger – his index finger to be exact, which he pointed continuously at Dirk, making confusing allegations.

I was relieved. I had feared what a Light Bringer might do to Dirk, but Luxcurious was obviously not a threat. Most of his accusations were garbled or downright inaccurate, and I just laughed in spite of the significantly vexed expression on my brother’s face. Finally Luxcurious said, “I think I have the highest IQ in this room,” in spite of the fact that we were outside at the time. I don’t know if it was the absurdity of his remark or what, but suddenly Dirk was seized into the air, spun several times, and disappeared.

There was much celebrating after that. Luxcurious was awarded several very expensive hair pieces by a grateful MOIST, and I might have been the only one to mourn Dirk’s passing into oblivion.

Then a couple hundred years later, there he was – my brother, in a new wool worsted coat and wool fedora, brandishing a new shepherd’s crook.

“Hey, Elmer,” he said.

He produced from his coat what he insisted were not magical shears, though when he pushed a button the shears made a buzzing sound and the blades clashed together repeatedly without any effort on Dirk’s part. Dirk brought his bellow, and I got out my scratchwing. The music of Fassentinker once again filled the air of Planet Two. A sheep came by to spoil the party, and Dirk used his non-magical shears to shave a creditable likeness of Uriculous on the animal’s behind. We had a fine few days together before a new Light Bringer showed up.

This Light Bringer was Lik’emall Busch. Lik’emall almost didn’t defeat Dirk. He seemed more interested in starting a land war in Phasia, but eventually a few of his aides put up a sign behind him that said, “Mission Accomplished,” and there went my brother back into oblivion.

I worried less this time, and sure enough, I saw Dirk a couple of centuries later. We had a nice couple of days until another Light Bringer – always with the initials LB – cast him back into oblivion.

It got pretty predictable. Sometimes my brother found me first; sometimes the Light Bringer did. Sometimes the LB tried to recruit me to the great cause. Sometimes he/she/it (I wasn’t sure with two of them) tried to cast me out first – either as a practice run, or maybe they were afraid I would team up with my destructive brother. I remained oblivion-free.

I always had mixed feelings about seeing a Light Bringer. I was happy because it meant I would be seeing Dirk soon, but by and large Light Bringers (and their MOIST hangers-on) were tedious people.

There was one exception. Lenny Bruise Light Bringer was alright. Dirk did his old trick of poking a cigar into the Light Bringer’s flame, only this time, he poked three cigars. He kept one himself, gave one to me, and the third to Lenny Bruise. They were funny smelling cigars. We all got to laughing after a while and my brother and Lenny started exchanging the foulest insults imaginable. I don’t think the MOIST officials appreciated Lenny Bruise’s methods, though one woman leaned in a bit where she could inhale the funny smelling smoke, and I think she started getting into it.

“I really gotta cast you out you…” I’ll spare you what Lenny called my brother.

“I could use a pizza anyway,” said Dirk.

None of us knew what a pizza was, but Lenny said, “Then go get one you dumb-f__k.”

There must have been power in that incantation, because my brother disappeared.

Lenny and I got together to smoke cigars a few times before he died. It was never the same. Dirk was missing – along with those strange cigars of his. Just the same, Lenny was one of the few of the millions I’ve seen die that I actually mourned.

It was just like Dirk to shake things up. Just when I got used to this into-oblivion-then-back routine, everything changed. I don’t know if I could say that I knew it was coming. I’ve always been cautious about saying I knew something ahead of time, but I could smell something in the air which was getting to be a challenge on a world with so many sheep.

It started on a day I went to get cigars and met the minions of the last Light Bringer, Lustavious Brachenhun.

I never liked that guy.

There! That's the end of Chapter One, so naturally the next installment will be Chapter 1.

What? Should 1 go before One?

As I mentioned in a previous post, this story is a satire. Any similarity between characters in this story and actual persons living or dead may or may not be intentional based on two factors

1) If it makes it funnier, then yes.

2) If it makes me get sued, then no.

   Unfortunately, no one on Planet Two knew the secret password.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Notes for the End of the World

I'm grateful to my friend Joe T. for making me aware that the world ended on October 7th. Otherwise I would have missed it. It didn't go as planned but I'm confident that the disappointed apocalypt (my new word for the rapidly growing profession of prophets who predict the end of the world,) is hard at work realigning his (it always seems to be guys that do this,) stars, bible verses, chicken bones. Any day now he'll announce that his calculations were only slightly off. The world will ACTUALLY end in the relatively near future - whenever he's best able to re-fleece his followers who give outrageously to the apocalypt as if there's no tomorrow.

After all, you can't spell prophet without profit... wait, okay, you can, but who’s going to remember that when the earth turns into a ball of molten lava, or falls off the great turtle's back because one of the four elephants farted.
Fall off the turtle's back? Don't ask me, my muse of the day is Hindu.

It occurred to me that there's got to be a companion industry to apocalyptancy (like that one?) I've started offering prepper check lists for you future crispy critters. Apocapreps is what we like to call ourselves, or at least it will be when I find someone else who A) wants to create prepper check lists, and 2) wants to be called an apocaprep.
After all, we have to work this out now. Creating a prep list after the earth has dropped into a black hole may be problematic. Here's a sampling of some of the fine prep ideas you can purchase from me for only half of all your earthly goods (the valuable half, please. I don't want your hoarded ramen noodles.)

For those who think the world will end in a fiery inferno
1) Check your local Walgreens for SPF 20 trillion sun screen.
2) Enjoy a s'mores apocalypse by packing plenty of graham crackers, Hershey bars, and marshmallows in your cargo pants.

3) Remember, light colors reflect the heat, dark colors absorb it.
For those who believe the world will end by cessation of the earth spinning
1) Join a gym and take spinning classes, but (here's the key,) spin in the opposite direction to the earth's rotation. This will acclimate you (assuming you can spin at 1040 miles/hr.)
2) Make friends with a spinning guru like... the Tasmanian Devil.
What's that? He's only animated; he doesn't have a body? Yeah, you might want to learn that trick too.
3) Economy sized Dramamine.
For those who think the galaxy is only a complex molecule in a doggie treat that as we speak is being fed to a surprisingly large beagle. (These are my kind of folks!)
1) Be kind to every beagle you meet.
2) Politely apologize to the doggie treats next time you visit your local Safeway.

3) Stop reading Douglas Adams.
For those who believe all human-kind will be over-run by zombies.
1) Reduce the flavorishisness of your brains by regularly reading Just Plain Stupid (that's what you're currently reading for the more prepped among you,) and other works by Headley Hauser!
2) Buy my novella downloads - then buy them again, especially if you don't have a reading device. Compared to your neighbor's brains, yours will smell like hospital food.

3) Maybe not brushing your teeth might help.
For those who think a black hole will swallow the earth and crush us all with gravity so powerful it swallows light.
1) Practice up by sleeping one night a week in your aspirin bottle.
2) Buy a really sturdy night-light.
3) Get more great tips from those fabulous Star Trek spin-offs. Those guys went in and out of a black hole like it was the corner deli.

For those that worry the earth will fall off the great turtle's shell when the elephant farts...
1) Maybe growing more arms might help.

2) Eat more chicken?
3) Sorry - I got nothin'. My Hindu muse just left for Chick-Fil-A.

Finally, I would like to try my hand at being an apocalypt and make a prediction. AFTER THE 7 BILLIONTH FAILED APOCALYPTIC PROFITSEE, (sorry) PROPHESY, (and we've got to be more than halfway there already,) THE WORLD WILL CONTINUE SPINNING, BUT APOCALYPTS WILL CEASE PREDICTING DOOM AND GLOOM!
Unfortunately, like all other apocalyptic prophesies, mine won't come true either.

I hope this has been helpful to you, (almost as much as I hope to find a way to make as much money being and apocaprepper, as those apocalypts are raking in.)

   Here's that spinning guru.