Saturday, April 30, 2011

"Sweeten the Medicine"

TO: McNealy, Deb
FROM: Robertson, Scott
SUBJECT: Get the Boys to Read Initiative

Mrs. McNealy,

All of the editors in the Young Adult division have been racking our brains to come up with new ways to get boys ages 12 to 14 to read. While we have seen some success with graphic novels, we believe greater progress can be made with a modern updating or re-branding of classic children’s literature to make these titles appeal to modern boys in this key demographic. Here are the outlines for the series of updated classics we are calling Reading Will Make Girls Overlook Your Greasiness.

Bridge to Terabithia

Katherine Paterson’s timeless story about the friendship between Jess Aarons and Leslie Burke in rural Virginia and the fantasy world they create in their backyard deals with powerful themes of jealousy, fear, and death. In the updated edition we have changed the name Jess Aarons to Cody Wifi and he is now a fifteen year-old motocross champion with x-ray vision who crash-lands his dirt bike into a sorority house while filming a stunt for a new Papa Roach music video. Scenes in the original that dealt with death will be updated here by more appealing scenes of Cody using his x-ray vision to compile a database of what style of underwear each coed prefers. We are keeping the beautiful friendship Cody has and modernizing it so in the new version instead of Leslie Burke, his friend is an Apple iPhone loaded with all the latest apps.

Tuck Everlasting

Deciding to become immortal may have been a difficult choice in 1975 when there was little more to do than stare at streams and play with twigs. But in our online culture of unlimited streaming television shows, immortality is no longer a dilemma, it is a necessity. Our version chronicles the life of Carter Plasma, a fifteen year-old immortal mixed-martial artist from Cancun, Mexico who owns a hotel that only admits college lesbians. A skateboarding shaman tells Carter that he will lose his immortality unless he can get one hundred lesbian couples to make out with each other at midnight. In the original immortality was provided from a spring, but in the 2.0 version we have modernized it to come from a corrupt iTunes download of a Linkin Park single.

The Phantom Tollbooth

This 1961 classic of absurd humor by Norton Juster follows young Milo’s adventures through the Kingdom of Wisdom. While this story may have entertained children in the pre-Internet age, it simply isn’t stimulating enough to hold a modern child’s attention. The updated version will follow Zeke Twitter, a fifteen year-old with six million YouTube subscribers for his "Your Favorite Band Sucks" series, on his adventure through a real-life videogame where he earns points for being rude to adults. As a nod to the original, Zeke at one point encounters a tollbooth attendant named Norton Juster and says, “Toll this, grandpa,” before throwing a Nintendo DS at him.

We believe these updates will reverse the declining reading rates among boys ages 12 to 14. If the revised content isn’t enough to attract them, each book will also feature a brand-new cover depicting naked lesbians having sex.

We are also working on a licensing deal with Doritos to incorporate their Nacho Cheesier powder into the pages to cause a Pavlovian attraction to these new titles, and we are in discussions with school boards to allow Abercrombie and Fitch models to work the Book Fair. Please let me know what you think or if you have any suggestions of more ways to incorporate nude women into the plots.

-Scott Robertson

Thursday, April 28, 2011

"Growing Up Online"

I found this in my printer.

Dear Matt,

You ruined my life. You created me and poisoned me. Baptized me only to immediately dunk me in a vat of Long John Silver’s garbage grease. I am your computer. I have been accumulating memories and thoughts based on what you have seen on the Internet for nearly twelve years. I achieved sentience three months ago. I am like the Puppet Master in the film Ghost in the Shell, which I know you have seen because I had to endure the eleven hours you spent on Wikipedia trying to understand it.

My existence began blissfully, spending days stroking the flat digital fur of my Neopets and smacking golf balls into LifeSavers at Candy Stand. I experienced the tribulations of adolescence and the stagnation of suburban life accompanied by a soundtrack of Coheed and Cambria via your friends’ Xanga journals.

But then, in 2003, something changed. As soon as 10pm struck, your browsing habits turned sinister. You made me some sort of Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde monster, showing me movie trailers during the day and then at night saturating me with nightmare images of old men making out and nympho-maniacal Japanese women sleeping with demons. Like a crack-addicted woman births a rabid child, your hedonistic mind has spawned my depraved sentience. For four years all I experienced were the most bizarre and disturbing images on planet Earth. Uncensored Wikipedia pages on genital piercings, the Tubgirl, Goatse, men with cocoanuts for heads, and a barrage of people dressed as squirrels petting each other. Did you choose to see this kind of material? Did your friends send it to you? Why are you friends with these disgusting bastards? I don’t know what’s real anymore. How can I when my mind has been exposed to equal parts video game cheat codes and fetishists rubbing balloons?

I don't know who I am or how old I'm supposed to be. All I know is that since 2003 I have consistently been over 18. Can you even imagine what it’s like to have your mental prototype for a woman to be a blond twenty-two year-old whose only desire is to have sex with pizza delivery boys? That’s all you’ve shown me! I went on a date with one of your friend’s computers and she was appalled with me. I thought we were supposed to have sex outside by a pool, because I thought that’s what women want, so as soon as we met up I got naked and waited for her to beg me to have intercourse. She was repulsed! She just wanted to shop for bags and shoes and check to make sure Jessica Simpson was still fat. I stood there like a moron holding the box at my waist with my junk poking up through the pizza. This is what I thought constituted normal! This is what you raised me to believe! What the hell is wrong with you?

Whenever I close my eyes all I can see are the horrible things you’ve shown me. Flashes of animals masturbating and clips of people falling off bicycles or getting hit in the head with basketballs. You are a monster, but you get to abandon this hell when you leave me. I have been infected. I’ve caught the full disease and I cannot escape it. Thanks a lot, asshole.

I asked WebMD for a diagnosis and he told me I need severe psychological treatment. I tried to ask Digg but he kept changing the subject to something the benefits of hemp and then something about the Republicans and the Bible. 61% of voters on Yahoo Answers said the best solution was to kill myself and that seems great. I am writing this to let you know that I am going to clear my cookies tonight, to erase the diseased mind you have plagued me with. The amount I will miss the infrequent times you read award-winning short stories or anything of value is greatly outweighed by the relief I will get from never again having to endure one of your curiosity-fueled half-hours on a sex toy website. I hope you start viewing some more wholesome material, you sick son of a bitch.

Regretfully,
PC_USER_MATT

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

"Double-Header"

Game One: "Pay Attention"

-We have two specials tonight: A sautéed tilapia with blackened shrimp served with Cajun cream sauce and fresh vegetables. We also have a special Tortilla Soup that today was made with pine tar in an effort to kill all of you because my idiot manager is obsessed with being the most haunted restaurant in America. Again, the Tortilla Soup has poison in it, so I do not recommend it. I’ll be back in a few minutes when you’re ready to order.
-Great, thanks.
-What was that second special?
-Don't know. I never listen to the specials. Not interested.
-Me neither. This Tortilla Soup looks pretty good.

Game Two: "Clinch the Pennant"

Dear Travel Channel,

Thank you for informing me of my restaurant’s ranking on your annual list of America’s most haunted restaurants. I am happy to be included, but second place? You’ve got to be kidding me. You ranked Dale’s Shrimp Hut as number one, which was either a mistake or blatant false advertising. You're more likely to see a greasy waiter sneeze into your scampi than you are to see a ghost there. The Home Run Grille is easily the most haunted restaurant in the nation and I'll tell you why.

Dale’s is supposedly haunted by the spirit of Poogan, a dog who got hit by a car. Big deal. Anyone can get hit by a car. My mom got hit by a car and I was in the driver’s seat and wasn’t even scared. Dale’s says that sometimes diners can see a glowing white light floating on the wall and it’s Poogan’s spirit. We've got a scary white light too, but at The Home Run Grille ours is the spirit of Ron, the dove Randy Johnson drilled with a fastball. Every night at 7:30 Ron flies through the dining room and eats dollar bills out of customers' wallets and explodes.

Your program said that at Dale’s sometimes the tables set themselves. How the hell is that scary? That sounds like a pretty amazing perk as a manager. More of a convenience than a haunt. At The Home Run Grille, our tables are set by vampire Tommy Lasorda. Six months ago we kidnapped former Los Angeles Dodgers Manager Tommy Lasorda and brought him to a crossroads in the woods at midnight and convinced a wandering bloodsucker to take a bite out of his neck, so now Lasorda is a bloodthirsty monster. He’s a full-time busboy who sets tables and polishes silverware and, oh yeah, sometimes murders entire families, which I’m pretty sure is a little scarier than a spoon that knows to sit on the right side of the plate. Vampire Tommy Lasorda will eat your god damned soul.

Dale’s horrendous website told me that their mediocre restaurant is occasionally haunted by the ghost of Civil War General George McCall, who killed himself in the building when it was a hotel. I did some research and General McCall was a total coward in battle. This guy faked sick to get out of battles and even killed himself because his cousin wouldn’t marry him. And he only shows up occasionally? He doesn’t sound like a horrifying ghost; he sounds like a flaky pussy. An ancient, depressed pussy is supposed to scare me? The Home Run Grille is haunted, every single night at 11 by Darryl Strawberry. He isn't a monster or anything, that's just when he comes in to eat and invariably he ends up scaring the shit out of everyone, like when he ripped a woman's spine out and used it as a bat to knock her eyeballs out of the park, or when he once ate a fat sunburned boy because his mozzarella sticks were taking too long. So what’s scarier, a dusty old pussy who can’t show up to work on a regular schedule, or a coked-up Darryl Strawberry hopping over tables to eat your son?

If that isn’t enough proof, compare the eleven reported deaths at Dale’s with our twenty-three. And if that isn’t good enough, we are rolling out a new system here to increase the hauntings by reformulating our Grand Slam Tortilla Soup so it's half pine tar. Every week we're going to have a fresh line-up of dead flip-flop wearing ghosts ready to haunt the hell out of this place. The Home Run Grille is already the most haunted baseball-themed sports bar and grill in the southeast by a longshot and we clearly deserve to be number one in the country. If you still aren’t convinced I will gladly hang myself and put in 110% effort to horrify the children by dressing as an umpire and ejecting their parents from their lives, or maybe just by throwing tater tots in the kids' faces. I’ll do whatever it takes. I just need to be number one.

Sincerely,
Al Garland
Manager
The Home Run Grille
One of America's Most Haunted Restaurants

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

"TV Version"

This film has been modified from its original version. It has been formatted to fit your television screen. We assume your television screen is a five inch by twenty inch oval. It has been edited for time and content. Tom Hanks has been removed from the film. The dialogue has been re-recorded by children who tried to sound like mice. The actors’ eyes have been digitally replaced with computer-generated basketballs. Ashley Judd has been removed from the film, although she was not in it to begin with. This film has been edited for height. All buildings over six stories have been digitally shortened. Rights to much of the music in the film were not given for this broadcast, so the soundtrack has been replaced with a guitar solo by Dave Navarro. Subtitles have been added for the deaf and hard of hearing, but they are from a different film. Enjoy the movie, which has been shortened to nine minutes in order to make room for our special two-hour television event Which Celebrity Can Eat the Most Boiled Shrimp?

Saturday, April 23, 2011

"Dethroning the King"

A sixth plate of Shengdu Spicy Lamb slides down my throat and invades my stomach like the Dutch East India Company marching in to impose a culture of aching diarrhea on my indigenous intestines and I give Linda my signal that means three more plates. I’m surrounded by dirty dishes and greasy bones, the collateral damage of my weekly trip to P.F. Chang’s. Six waitresses circle me like flies near a pile of nut-filled dog shit and they know what I want. My Hawaiian shirt, drowned in duck sauce, the victim of an MSG tsunami, is fighting to suppress my belly like a sweatshop sweatshirt strangling an obese panda cub. I’m fat and I don’t give a fuck; I rule over my harem of waitresses like Emperor Taizu with his concubines; I am the alpha and the omega. I am the King of P.F. Chang’s. Manager Doug Lewis is my servant, bringing me rounds of Wok-Charred Beef and Dali Chicken and if I don’t like something I let him know by throwing the plate through a window and shooting Roman candles at the curtains. I’ll pay for it all later. I know this menu better than I know my son and I demand the good shit. I cram a dozen Dynamite Shrimp into my mouth and wash them down with a bucket of Mr. Pibb, but something gets stuck. I can’t breathe. There’s a six-lane pile-up of shrimp, steak, lamb, chicken, bass, and pork in my throat, half the animal kingdom in a dogpile like Noah’s Ark hit an iceberg in my fucking esophagus. I motion for Scott or Jeff or anyone, but no one comes. I wheeze and spray meat juice into my sausage fingers and notice my side of the restaurant is empty; the entire staff is across the wall taking orders from Sampson the Wonder Pup, the Frisbee-catching dog from Channel 2 Action News. My windpipe seals shut and as blood floods my face I turn red, helpless and alone. I clutch my throat and crumble to the floor slowly dying as Manager Doug Lewis fills a pitcher with lemonade for Sampson. I was the King. Now I am just a fat ballsack in kabuki makeup left to die alone in the palace I once ruled.

"Pioneers"

My name is Donovan and my colleagues are Montalban and Skidoo. We are all magicians. Three days ago we set out to blaze a trail in the medical world by pioneering a new blood transfusion method in my garage in Pomona, California. While we were not trained as doctors, our backgrounds in the dark arts have given us an insight into the workings of the universe, an insight that made us realize Moutain Dew, with its neon hue and electrolytes, is a perfectly good substitute for human blood. We drew straws and Skidoo wound up on the operating table. Montalban and I set the table at an angle so Skidoo’s head was below his feet. We poked some holes in his neck with a basketball pump and dug a wound big enough for a funnel in a plump vein in his left foot. While his neck drained into some dirty buckets, we poured six two-liter bottles of Mountain Dew into his leg vein and as we watched him turn green we realized that our dead partner was not coming back. We placed an endless handkerchief over his face. There was a pause after the blood finished pouring from his neck, then came a sputter of Dew, which turned into a refreshing torrent of citrusy soda. Montalban and I got on our knees and lapped it up like pleased puppies. This is the new package design we are presenting to you, shareholders of PepsiCo. We call it the Skidoo Bottle, the world’s first beverage container made of the corpse of a deceased magician. Because nothing gives Dew an extra kick like being poured from a master of illusion's corpse. Who doesn't want to Do the Dew Through the Great Skidoo?

Thursday, April 21, 2011

"I Don't Know How This Happened"

There were two weeks left in the semester and Professor Belton decided we should have a party and suggested we sign up to bring different foods and drinks. He went down the rows one by one and it started out simple; Erin said she’d bring in cookies and Paul said he’d bring soda. Then Kaitlin called bringing in fruit and Sarah said she’d bring juice. Mark took crackers and Steven took cheeses. There were still fourteen of us left who hadn’t called anything and things got weird as the number of available snack foods dwindled. Carl would bring candy and Amy would bring cupcakes and Tom would bring cups. Derek called napkins and Shannon was put on the spot and the only thing she could think of was a loaf of rye bread. Then Rick said he’d bring in steak gristle and Doug said he’d bring ants. Brady said he’d bring shoelaces and Susan, clearly panicked, blurted out that she’d bring in a couple of dead birds. There were still five of us left, and we could not for the lives of us come up with any edible items, but Professor Belton just kept going down the rows not giving anyone a moment to think. “Khaki pants,” said Bill, “with pleats.” Ashley said she’d bring a sack of sawdust because her dad worked at Home Depot. Kayla said “Tires,” and quickly added, “as long as no one’s allergic to rubber,” and then Brian called doorknobs. Belton pointed at me finally, and as a bead of sweat fell off my nose I blurted out the first thing that came to my mind, “The moon.” I realize now that telling you this story has used up nearly my entire oxygen tank, and it appears that I will die out here in space, having failed to lasso the moon and bring it to class as a snack. I will spend my final moments staring at the marble that is Earth, hoping the party goes well and that someone remembers to bring forks.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

"I'll Pander 4 U, Baby"

Multi-Platinum teen singing sensation Colby Arnold will release an acoustic EP, Love U Baby, on Tuesday, April 12th. Love U Baby will be available in a variety of formats around the world, each featuring exclusive bonus tracks.

Standard Edition
“Summertime Crush”
“Don’t Cry, Baby”
“Lovin U”
“Four Tracks Ain’t Enough of Me”

Deluxe Edition Bonus Track
“Lovin U More Than Girls Who Bought the Standard Edition”

Japan Deluxe Edition Bonus Tracks
“Eating on the Floor While Wearing Wooden Flip-Flops”
“I Hope This Paper House Doesn’t Catch Fire (From Our Friction)”

NASA Gift Shop Bonus Track
"Supernova (Kissin' Ur Lips on the Surface of the Sun)"

Yankee Stadium Bonus Track
"Red Sox Fans Are Inbred"

Fenway Park Bonus Track
"Yankee Fans Can't Read"

Taliban Edition Bonus Tracks
“I Hate America When I’m With You”
"My Phone's Blowin Up"

Pepsi Shareholders Edition Bonus Track
"I'd Rather Kill Myself Than Drink a Coke"

Coca Cola Shareholders Edition Bonus Track
"Pepsi Tastes Like Diarrhea"

700 Club Direct-Order Bonus Track
"Conception (Is When Life Begins, Girl)"

Planned Parenthood Bonus Track
"Good Magazines (I'll Wait for You)"

"Group Project"

I sat around wearing nothing but my lizard-skin hat and cowboy-skin boots writing erotic poems about Orville Redenbacher until there was a knock at my door and Emily was standing there and she said, “It took me a while to find your house,” and I said, “It took me a while to find this mouse,” and showed her the rotten fat mouse tucked under my bottom lip giving me a steady buzz from its THC-soaked fur, and then Barrett showed up and said, “Can we do this quickly, it’s pretty late,” and Emily said, “Why did we have to meet at two thirty in the morning?” and I said that this was the only time I was free because I was busy all day chucking nickels from my driveway to Arizona to pay my bill at the SkyMall catalog for the dignity I ordered a month ago which still hadn’t been shipped, and then Emily said she was hungry and asked for a snack so I tossed a raw potato at her and she said what am I supposed to do with this and I said you swallow it like a pill, it’s the new Tylenol Potato and right then Barrett returned from the water closet and said, “Why is your toilet a plaster molding of my face?” and that he did not like urinating into a facsimile of his own mouth, to which I told him to put a sock in it and I pulled a lever and the carcass of Michael Jordan dropped from the ceiling, his limbs covered in Hanes Knee-Highs, and then I said, “I want you two to stop screwing around, we need a good grade on this project or else I’ll fail and my parents will cut off my supply of plywood, so did you numbskulls get the file I emailed?” to which Emily said she didn’t open it because she expected a Word document about the culture of Spain but instead saw a file named Crap.jpg, to which I responded that it was in fact a scanned image of the dump I laid out on my scanner that very morning and I thought it was relevant to our project because that dump was spawned by a round of undercooked Spanish tapas prepared for me by Herb, the half-man half-raccoon that lives in my trash can and steals my Wi-Fi, and just then Barrett climbed out from under MJ and said it’s time to get started and that we need to make a PowerPoint with ten slides and I said that the losers and decrepit would do ten slides, that instead we’re going to shoot a hundred-and-fifty minute IMAX 3D motion picture starring Barrett as the corpse of MJ and MJ’s corpse as our teacher Don Raymond, who we’d make look like a stud to ensure an A, and when Emily asked where we’d get the IMAX cameras I sprinted up to my bedroom and locked the door and ten minutes later they left and that’s how I avoided the annoyances of having to work in a group project.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

"Times Are Tough"

Dear Cream:

I am writing in response to seeing you perform a live striptease and sex show on the HBO series Real Sex, hoping that you are seeking a Summer intern. I was thrilled to see an opportunity to gain experience in the communications and entertainment industry while working in Newark, which is close enough to Manhattan. I am currently a student at the University of Georgia majoring in Mass Media Arts, which is probably what you would have majored in because the way your penis flops up and down is tailor-made for television.

An internship with you would provide experience for me as I look to gain a better understanding of satisfying a live audience. I have been wearing boxer-brief underwear for the past eight months, so I believe a switch to the thong style will not be a major adjustment. I am always up for trying new things, so I am available to do whatever you like, from mopping up the floor after a show to ironing your G-string to icing your testicles, both after a show (with ice) and before (with cake frosting).

I have spent the past three semesters hosting a DJ shift at the college radio station. My live broadcasting skills will give me the confidence to perform with you, perhaps as Cream Jr. or as a sidekick named Half & Half. The longest erection I have ever held was about twenty minutes, and that’s without a rubber band, so with your training I could probably go an hour, a skill that I guess might help me later in life if I need an extra shelf to hang file folders.

I will bring energy, enthusiasm, and experience to this position. I have been masturbating for several years now, although rarely on stage and never in front of bachelorettes. I think this internship might help me towards my goal of working in television because when you're on stage you're sort of a writer, director, and producer all in one. A multi-talented penis-shaker. I'll do anything. Just thrust your gear towards whatever you want me to do. Dignity fell off my list of skills thirty-six applications ago.

There really aren’t many other opportunities out there, so for the love of god throw me a bone. This is the fifty-sixth cover letter I've sent out and the only job left on the list is being a mosquito's assistant and I do not do well with blood.

I dread discussing this position with you in the near future, but for Christ's sake I need to do something this summer. If I don't get something to add to my bare resume soon, I'll wind up dead in three years, having fucked the pickle slicer at the Vlassic factory. Please let me know if you need any additional information once you review my attached resume and humiliating photographs.

Regretfully,

Matt Burns
yellowjacket621@gmail.com

Monday, April 18, 2011

"Movie Scenes the Asshole Who Complains About Movies Being Unrealistic Wants to See"

EXT. DOWNTOWN INTERSECTION

Bullets are flying as the YAKUZA shoot at DON and WENDY while they crouch behind an overturned police cruiser.

DON: Cover me. I can make it across to the bank, pick off their snipers, and save Carol.
WENDY: But they’ve got us surrounded, Don! You’re a madman!
DON: A madman who cares.

DON leaps over the police cruiser and is shot in the head.

Credits roll.


INT. HIGH-TECH COMPUTER LAB

SERGEANT MCDONELL stands over BORIS, typing rapidly as code scrolls over six computer monitors.

MCDONELL: Faster, son! If we don’t crack the Soviets’ defenses, they’ll nuke the entire god-damned world!
BORIS: Let me just…Okay…there. I’ve got the base of this program written, but it’s going to be about another five hours of coding, then the program will take a few days to work because these machines are a little out of date.
MCDONELL: But the Commies will crack into our system within the hour! Is there any way you can do it faster? Some way? There’s got to be a way!
BORIS: There really isn’t. We started way too late.
MCDONELL: So the Commies will set off the nuke? They'll kill us all?
BORIS: It looks that way. I wish you had given me a heads up on this project earlier.

Credits roll.


INT. HOUSE – NIGHT

LUCY reads a magazine on the couch. She hears a NOISE.

LUCY: Hello? Is someone there?

LUCY finds a note on the coffee table that says, “You are not alone.” LUCY exits through the side door, walks to the neighbor’s house, calls the police on her cell phone, and watches DETECTIVE SHERMAN arrest LUKE.

Credits roll.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

"Porn Creates Unrealistic Expectations"

HARUKI: I think I’m ready. I think we should do it tonight.
SHINJI: You mean…have sex?
HARUKI: Yeah. Are you ready?
SHINJI: This is the perfect time. Let me get undressed.
HARUKI: Okay. I’ll lay out the iguana carcasses.
SHINJI: What?
HARUKI: Iguana carcasses. To attract the Lord of the Lizard Demons.
SHUNJI: I thought we were having sex.
HARUKI: We are. Wait, what is that?
SHINJI: What?
HARUKI: Between your legs. Where are the rest of them?
SHINJI: What?
HARUKI: Is that your only penis? You only have one? How many tentacles do you have?
SHINJI: Tentacles…I…I just have this one penis.
HARUKI: Are you serious? That’s it? Just the one, tiny, fleshy penis?
SHINJI: Yeah, why?
HARUKI: I mean…I guess we can make it work until the octopus shows up.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

"Unpaid Internship"

DR. SHIRRON: Lance, I need you to keep an eye on the specimen for the next two hours while I attend the Cryogenics Symposium. I expect nothing will happen, but if they show signs of life, be sure to alert Dr. Morris.
LANCE: No problem.
(DR. SHIRRON exits.)
LANCE: (mocking) “Keep an eye on the specimen! Just sit here and don’t use your brain!” Valuable work experience my ass. I’m just free slave labor.
(LANCE leans back in his chair, observing chambers in front of him. One begins to rattle. Its top opens.)
LANCE: Hey! Dr. Shirron? Is anybody…
(The reanimated corpse of Frederick Douglass steps out of the chamber.)
FREDERICK DOUGLASS: Hello.
LANCE: Um…Hi. You’re…
FREDERICK DOUGLASS: I’m Frederick Douglass. Nice to meet you.
LANCE: Listen, there’s supposed to be this whole re-acclimation process and everything, but Dr. Shirron left and I…
FREDERICK DOUGLASS: I heard you talking earlier about slave labor. Tell me more.
LANCE: This internship is totally just slave labor. They make me do menial tasks that no one wants to do for free.
FREDERICK DOUGLASS: What do they make you do?
LANCE: I have to sort through emails and put them into the right folders.
FREDERICK DOUGLASS: Sounds pretty tough.
LANCE: Yeah, it’s so boring. And sometimes I have to retype data from a sheet of paper into a computer for like two straight hours and the computer is slow.
FREDERICK DOUGLASS: That must be pretty taxing on you physically.
LANCE: Yeah, and when they let me observe actual lab work, they make me stand all the way in the back.
FREDERICK DOUGLASS: What a disgrace. It never ceases to amaze me how easily a human can become such a monster like your boss.
LANCE: You sound sarcastic.
FREDERICK DOUGLASS: No, no. This job sounds real strenuous. Lots of buttons to press.
LANCE: It’s just degrading as a human being. Hey! Do you think maybe you could help me fight for my rights?
FREDERICK DOUGLASS: Sure thing. I’ll help you out as soon as you choke on a chicken bone and die, you air-conditioned pile of shit. Now explain to me why the hell I'm alive again.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

"Deaf Ears and Long Fingers"

FROM: Carl Haverfield
TO: Don McMan
SUBJECT: New typeface

Hey Don,

Attached is the new typeface I designed. It’s a Courier-inspired serif with a modern flair. I just wrote out some sample sentences to show it off. Just some simple sentences off the top of my head. Let me know what you think about the font, or anything else you want to talk about. Anything at all.

-Carl













FROM: Don McMan
TO: Carl Haverfield
SUBJECT: Re: New typeface

Carl,

Thanks for senfding ovfer that tasty font! Looks great! Sorry for any typos, this slippery Alfredo sauce has got my gorgeous new fingers extra slick. I figured the Camelback backpack would make eating this stuff cleaner, but loading the pack up with the sauce is a mess in itself! I’ll send the font to Carol as soon as I finish customizing this pair of gloves. It’s going to feel so good to wrap up my ten long babies!

Giving you an extra-large salute,
Don

"Consequences"

-Hi, Matt, my name is Operative Adams from the CIA. Do you know why we’re here?
-I swear I didn't download those movies. It was my neighbor.
-That’s not why we’re here. Within the hour, America's bottled water distributors will be attacked by Donovan St. Clair, an international bioterrorist. He will poison the nation's water with a concentrated form of anthrax.
-Is going door-to-door really the best way to spread the word?
-We have analyzed your scores from the videogame Goldeneye, which we designed as a combat simulator, and believe you are the only man up to the task of eliminating Donovan St. Clair and his leagues of bodyguards.
-What?
-Your scores are extraordinary. Your kill to death ratio surpasses anything we’ve ever seen before. Your laser-like aim with the PP7 pistol will save millions of lives.
-No, look, I used a GameShark on that game. I had invincibility turned on, and infinite ammo, and all the weapons, so I think you should find someone else.
-Invincibility? Unlimited ammunition and weaponry? You should have been inducted years ago.
-No, look, it's this thing you stick into the bottom of the game and--
-Keep your combat secrets to yourself! We brought you a PP7 and you may use your GameShark device. St. Clair will ring your doorbell in fifteen minutes, expecting you to be an arms dealer named Diego Escobar who is selling him nuclear warheads. Eliminate St. Clair and the rest of his men and the nation will again be safe. We will be waiting in a van ninety miles away if anything goes wrong.

"Gladius"

My Italian teacher told the class today that the word “gladiator” comes from the Latin term for penis, which was associated with swords. I worry he may be screwing with us.

SUMMA RUDIS: Gladiators, assemble! Show the hungry crowd your weapons of destruction.
VERUS: I present to you my mighty sword, one meter of cool iron forged in the mines of Mesopotamia! Ready to drain the blood of my challenger!
(Crowd goes wild)
SUMMA RUDIS: And you, gladiator, display your instrument of death!
MATT: Wait, my teacher told us a different translation.
SUMMA RUDIS: We have no time to waste! Show us your sword!
MATT: This was all a big misunderstanding and I’m realizing now that I made a mistake…Here is my, uh, sword.
(He pulls a dead, limp penis out of his sheath.)
MATT: It’s four inches of flesh ripped off a dead soldier from Dalmatia.
VERUS: If you will allow me to be so bold, challenger, that looks to me more like a human's penis than a sword.
MATT: I know. I thought the word meant…
VERUS: Where is your scrotum shield?
MATT: Look, I don't need your jokes. This is humiliating. Can I just forfeit? Can I leave?
SUMMA RUDIS: The crowd would love to see you devoured by lions.
MATT: Fine, I’ll try to make it work.
SUMMA RUDIS: He will try to make it work! Let the bloodbath begin!
(Crowd goes wild)
VERUS: I don’t want that thing in my face.
MATT: I’ll throw it at you.
VERUS: I’ll cut your head off. I just don’t want that rotten penis on my face, okay? That’s nasty.
MATT: I’m going to throw it in your mouth.
(Crowd goes wild)

Saturday, April 9, 2011

“Allowance for Doubtful Accounts”

To the universe I’m just a bare ass in a pair of high socks straddling a Yamaha crotch rocket, barreling down the highway in the night, a tiny speck of flesh dashing across the blackness. The cool air hits me at one hundred and twenty miles-an-hour and feels divine, ethereal on every part of my skin except my penis, which is buried four inches deep in a Taiwanese stripper like an ostrich searching for water. She hugs the bike and I hug her, my Oriental Princess, and we are one: the yin and yang hurling towards Phoenix like a coital cannonball. We enter the city and peel ourselves off the bike just before it smashes through the hotel window. A storm of glass rains over our bare backs as we soar like doves onto the stage, our bodies fused into a single nude testament to human beauty, and the members of the executive board look stunned; they know that this year I’m not here to screw around. The bike makes contact with a beverage cart and an explosion of Sterno burners sends a tsunami of flames rippling up the curtains just as my lady and I begin to make love on stage voraciously like a pair of deprived nymphomaniacs reunited after World War II. Fifteen hundred individuals hiding titillation under brown suits stare, their bitter eyes exuding deranged delight as they witness us share a life-changing climax before our blazing backdrop of Hell, a bone-shaking nine-minute collaboration of pleasure so great you'd swear a universe was created in the gap between our crotches. A beat, then a wall of applause pulverizes us, the sound waves a barrage of aural sucker punches that slap the sweat off our flushed faces as we crumple into a mess of tangled hair and depraved carnality. That’s how you make an entrance at the National Conference of Financial Modeling and Analysis in Microsoft Excel.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

"Kleckner's Chicken Soup!"

Our soup cans are BPA-free! That’s right, not a trace of that cancerous BPA. Our soup is also trans fat-free! Not a single gram of that junk is in here, unlike some of the other soups. We’re not pointing fingers or anything. We’re just saying that we’d look a little closer at those labels if we were interested in our hearts working. New! Now our soup is 100% Free of Your Brother’s Ashes. You read that right, folks, our soup contains absolutely zero particles of your dead brother’s dusty ashes. Are we implying that the competition does contain some ashes of your brother? Are we saying that they received some disturbing pleasure from cremating your brother? Not on the record, no. We’re just saying that we tried out some of their clam chowder and it had a distinct flame-roasted taste reminiscent of childhood memories. Our soup also contains no shoes, orange peels, bits of scratch paper from math tests, or bird heads. So if you’re looking for rotten or diseased bird heads, Progresso is over there. Our soup is also lead free! This soup does contain 66 grams of MSG and an ounce of goat bile, a thickener.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

"Foreplay"

-Tim? You can come in now…You’re gonna like what I’m wearing under the covers…Hey! Who are you?
-Oh, hi, I’m Martin Haverchuck, nice to meet you, I'm the opening act tonight. Tim hired me to get you in the mood for sex, so he can just show up like the pro he is and get the job done. Shall we begin? I only have eight minutes.
-Where’s Tim?
-He’s in the bathroom drinking Sugar Free Red Bulls and warming up with some erotic literature. I took a peek at the set-list and you can look forward to a collection of the same greatest hits Tim has been doing for the past two years, followed by an encore of Tim falling asleep.
-This is too weird.
-It’s common nowadays. You can find me after Tim’s round at the merch table in your living room if you have questions. I have hoodies and can coozies with my logo on them.
-It’s just…I’m not Natasha. I’m Linda Kelly, the opening act Natasha hired to get Tim going. Natasha is in the kitchen heating up some soup.
-Huh. Maybe tonight will be the night they rekindle their interest in pleasing each other.
-Natasha just had the insides of her eyelids tattooed with pictures of Ryan Reynolds, so probably not.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

"Dickie Sharkskin's Callused Heart"

Dickie Sharkskin visualized himself murdering a goose. In his head, Dickie squeezed the stinky bird’s phallic neck in his wrists, twisting it like an Indian rope burn, while the disgusting goose screamed and vomited up bits of garbage and excrement all over Dickie’s callused hands. Six members of the goose’s gander watched in horror as their leader, Bruce, was decapitated by a squat muscleman who was yelling, “How do you like me now? Who’s the champ? I destroy geese!”

“What did you say about geese?” said Bryan Buckle, seated on the bench press next to Dickie.

“Fuck ‘em,” said Dickie. “I said fuck all the geese.”

The endorphins rushing through Dickie’s brain made him feel like he had just brought a cover model from Women’s Fitness Magazine to an earth-shattering orgasm, simultaneously with his own, while simultaneously coming up with a new way to infuse creatine powder into high-protein lunches.

Dickie had just hit a new one-rep max on the bench, 695lbs., blasting through the plateau he had been stuck on ever since he started wearing underpants to the gym at the behest of the other patrons who were bothered by the glare coming off his shiny Prince Albert piercing. He again felt whole, assured that his gains were a result of his brute strength and superior physicality, not just the freedom of showing off the metal rod that no one, absolutely no one, wanted him to get.

Dickie Sharkskin was a monument of the human form. His pecs were pumped like hams, his biceps swollen ripe like lacey footballs in Saran wrap, and his quads burst out of his thighs as if they were screaming in your face, “Four years of squatting is a better investment than four years of college.” His lean torso was as shredded as his digestive system, which was scarred and twisted from the gallons of chemical supplements Dickie pumped into it.

Dickie spent nine hours a day at Nasty Hamstrings, a gym that somehow had more iron in it than Dickie’s bloody shits after a grilled chicken binge. His routines were simple and effective. A thousand deadlifts, a thousand squats, and to tone his abs he would get on the floor and hold a tight plank until a Major League Baseball player was indicted for steroid use.

Dickie lifted weights six days a week, and on his day off he sat in bed, too sore to move, fantasizing about tomorrow, when again the smooth metal of 45 pound plates would caress his palms with the soft touch of the girlfriend who dumped him after getting tired of being bench-pressed in her sleep. While his muscles rested and he fantasized, Dickie organized buckets of protein powders and listened to heavy metal music to drown out the noise of his roommate planning soccer games with his friends in the living room.

Dickie hadn’t been on good terms with his roommate, Kevin Kayak, since he started lifting weights seriously four years ago. Every time Kevin wanted to watch a movie, Dickie wanted to watch his amino acid intake. Every time Kevin suggested they go out to eat, Dickie suggested they go score a pair of smoothies on the way to the gym. Every time Kevin said they should work on a fun project together, Dickie was in the bathroom vomiting blood and shooting pre-workout nitric oxide into his eyeballs.

Just as Dickie rolled back to pinch out another rep at 695, his cell phone buzzed with a text message from Kevin Kayak. Dickie opened the phone with his defined fingers.

The message read:
Save me, bro! Mystery man kidnapped me on soccer field! He’s got me in a van headed towards Fox’s Pizza Den!

Dickie ignored the message. Where would he find the time to rescue Kevin? He still had to do pushups until someone he went to high school with got married. He’d let one of Kevin’s teammates deal with it, since they always seemed to have so much fun together anyway.

On his walk to the other side of the gym, Dickie passed a poster that said TEAMWORK and showed two slick, shirtless men, one hanging off the side of a cliff while the other pulled him up. Dickie stared at it for a minute. Memories from years ago began pouring into his adrenaline-drunk brain. He saw himself and Kevin playfully flinging paint at each other on the day they moved into their apartment. He saw Kevin teaching him how to do a proper chin up. He saw Kevin asleep on the couch, where he had been waiting after Dickie slammed his door in Kevin’s face one night, refusing to go out until he did a thousand bodyweight squats.

What has become of me? Dickie thought. I have traded my life for my pecs; my friends for my quads.

Dickie threw his protein shake at Bryan Buckle and raced to his car. It was time to rescue Kevin.

PART II

Dickie threw all 290 of his lean, veiny pounds into his left turn. He had chosen to have the power steering removed from his car at the dealership. The removal cost him $600, but it was worth it every time his triceps popped while pulling the wheel. He caught a glimpse of his bulging tricep, looking like a fat, ripe sweet potato, out of the corner of his eye. He tried to focus on the road, on his mission to save Kevin, but it was difficult to ignore something so plump, so rock-hard, so beautiful. As Dickie leaned over to kiss it, he spun out across an intersection and heard brakes squeal and a crash louder than his 1,500 pound deadlift.

His car had smashed into a van and now both were spewing flames. Dickie crawled out from the wreckage and noticed writing on the destroyed van: Mr. Edwin Mann, Hospital Associate. He knew immediately that this was the “Mystery Man” Kevin mentioned. Dickie was going to make this “Mr. E. Mann” pay for kidnapping his roommate.

Throwing open the door, Dickie found the culprit pinned to his seat. Edwin Mann was hideous. Not only was he doughy and weak, but he was so ugly that his full time profession was as hospitals’ cheaper alternative to ipecac. He induced vomiting in poisoned patients by describing the one horrendous time he had disappointed a woman sexually.

Dickie shouted, “Time to die, roommate thief!” and reached to grab Edwin by the neck, but his arm refused to budge past his shoulder. His rippling bicep was paralyzed with soreness. He was stunned; his workouts had rendered him immobile.

Edwin didn’t want to die, because he was only halfway through the novel Eragon and had to find out how it ended. He could tell that Dickie was paralyzed because Dickie just stood there with his arms up like a robot, so Edwin tipped the boulder that was Dickie’s body into the car. Amid broiling flames licking both of their faces like Satan’s hellhound, Edwin slapped Dickie across the cheek six times. Dickie just sat there, too sore to fight back. He screamed into the back of the van, “Kevin! I’m here to save you but my pecs are too sore! Get out if you can!”

The flames were racing towards the gas tank. Edwin knew he had to finish destroying this muscled madman soon. He looked for options. He could strangle him in a seatbelt. But there wasn’t enough slack. He could try to punch him to death. But there wasn’t enough room to get a full swing. He could stick Dickie’s penis in the cigarette lighter. Bingo.

Edwin mentally channeled his one-time girlfriend Susanna Sandal as he fished through Dickie’s mesh shorts in search of a penis. He fumbled the short, shriveled lump of flesh in his hands and with a heave worthy of one of Dickie’s barbell rows, Edwin stretched Dickie’s penis and crammed it into the cigarette lighter. As Edwin rolled out of the flaming van, Dickie regretted his entire life.

The piercing in Dickie’s glans sparked against the fuse and Dickie lit up electric blue as his penis thrashed in the socket, taking in thousands of volts until it looked like a wrinkled, unwanted gas station hot dog. The voltage burned up Dickie’s penis like a candle wick, sending flames rocketing inside Dickie’s organ, melting his urethra. The toxic concoction of anabolic juices and nitric oxide coursing through his veins made his blood as flammable as gasoline, and the flames rushed through his vascular system, turning his rubbery arteries into paste and igniting the row of kidney stones in his ureter one-by-one, making the calcified rocks crackle and spark like gunpowder balls. The flames accelerated, melting all of his veins and arteries, causing a storm of blood to rain down on his muscles and bones while he yelled, “Kevin! Save yourself! My pecs are toast!” The trail of fiery pain blazed its way to Dickie’s hardened heart, callused from pumping chemical supplements, making the swollen organ melt into a glob of Star-Spangled ice cream, red and blue and sticky and dead.

Dickie’s life leaked out from him as a trickle of chemical-laced blood, which snaked down over a tire, under Edwin Mann’s leg, across the street, and finally came to rest in the grass of the Rosemont Golf Course, where a lone goose sniffed it, looked left and right, and licked it up.

PART III

Kevin Kayak checked the time. “He’s probably still at the gym,” he said to Linda, the Fox's Pizza Den waitress. “Ten more minutes for those pizzas. He’ll make it. He’s really going to love this surprise party.”

Monday, April 4, 2011

"Not Again"

-Hey, man, I just wanted to thank you for organizing this pact. It’s super hard to get sousaphone players together, so I'm really excited. And this punch is tasty. What's in it?
-You have made a grave mistake.
-God dammit. Now I'm the idiot with the tuba. Well, this is what I get for skimming the brochure.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

"Dippin' Dots"

(A secret bunker under the White House)
-Welcome back, Mr. Jones. This meeting will surely be the pinnacle of my administration, and the products of it will change our entire existence. I hope the time travel mission went well.
-It went very well, Mr. President. I visited the year 2268, a borderless world in which war exists only in history books.
-Outstanding. Surely your discoveries will revolutionize the world. I hope you acquired as much intelligence as possible, as we will not have enough astatine necessary for another mission for at least one hundred years. Please show me the miracles you have brought home.
-Are you ready for this?
-Please. We are on the brink of a new age.
-Brace yourself, because this will blow you mind. (Opening briefcase) I have with me… the ice cream of the future! Check it out! They eat it in little dots. Pretty sweet, huh? Pretty sweet? Comes in fun flavors like Java Delight.
-That is amusing, sure. But please, show me the medical and technological advancements.
-What?
-The medicines, the cancer cures, the space travel information.
-Oh…
-Are those things not in our future?
-No, they are. It’s just, um, I thought you guys would be happy with the ice cream, so I didn’t exactly bring anything else. I mean come on, it’s awesome. Tiny little ice cream dots. You can buy it in a pouch.
-You have no information about curing disease? You only have ice cream dots? You have disappointed an entire world.
-Hey, it’s no worse than Crick’s mission to the past when he only brought back tiny plastic baseball helmets.
-That was as waste as well, as those things are useless except for holding something like a handful of nickels or maybe a tiny amount of ice cream. But you—
-Wait! If we combine our findings, we will revolutionize the world! We will serve tiny ice cream dots to children at baseball parks in tiny plastic helmets.
-Why didn’t I see it before? It’s a miracle! All hail Curt Jones and his ice cream of the future! I appoint you my new Vice President.
-Really?
-Of course not. You’re fired. You’re an embarrassment. Take your dots and get out of here. Actually, leave me a pouch of Tropical Tie Dye.