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"A fed bear is a dead bear" was a slogan used by radical left wing bears. These were bears who were tired of "The Uncle Yogi's" who abandoned their naturalistic lifestyle in the wild to put on ties and delightful little hats. These 'domesticated bears' were hired by aging drag queen, J.Edgar Hoover in part of an effort to crack down on the anti-war movement of the sixties. The idea was to use wildlife to infiltrate such groups as the SDL and the Weatherman. It was the hope of the F.B.I. that 'those no good-nik hippies would be too stoned to notice that their latest recruit was in fact a dangerously carniverous bear in disguise'.

The plan was just one more shameful chapter in the annals of F.B.I. history.

Step 1.Bear is offered food.

Step 2.Bear realizes "food" is actually from Arby's, reacts appropiately.

Step 3.Bear is finally "put to sleep" ending a killing spree that's added up to 23 dead from its Roast Beef induced murder rage!

Please only you can prevent Roast Beef induced bear rage, only you!

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Thursday: My driving instructor looks like a heavy set Ving Rhames. I catch him there in the modest white Datsun with the 'DRIVING SCHOOL' emblazoned across a sandwich board on the roof. He's got his shades resting on a shaved head that's sticking out of a fur lined hood, he's talking calmly on a cell phone, a massive arm resting out the passenger window. He catches me from the corner of his eye, hangs up and gives me the once over.

"You Robert?" his baritone is seasoned out of state. Up North or out West.


"I'm Walter" he flashes me this fifty dollar bill of a smile, "I'm here to teach you how to drive."

Friday: Five dollars goes far on a Friday night in Atlanta.

10 o'clock. The Princess rings me up. She's restless. She's got some money to burn. She wants to go out out dancing with her man. There's a show down at the Star Bar. The line up: The Cogburns, The Luchagores and Lust. In that order. It's right down the block from me. She wants to know if i'm in or if i'm out?

"I'm in, Princess."

"Cool. We'll be there to pick you up in twenty minutes."

A quick shower, a shave, a splash of 'Smell Good' behind the ears, a lysterine soak, a fresh pair of drawers and a clean t-shirt. That's me all good to go! I mix a strong drink, put on Nothing Shocking, crank it up and light up a waiting around smoke.

Saturday: The Magpie converts alcohol to energy something fierce! One drink in and he's pacing back and forth across the kitchen floor. He talks to me in quick bursts of ideas that get timed and truncated by a non-stop series of cell phone calls he's receiving. One minute it's a stream of conscious monolouge the next it's a hushed converstaion with the cellphone. I turn up the stereo. John Hodgman waxes on Hobos then it's 'Run.Run.Run' by The Velvet Underground. I got the changer on random tonight. It helps me think sometimes. I check on the Magpie who's still on the phone, his steady march across the kitchen floor has trickled down into a absent minded pacing.

Then he hangs up, speeds back up, spins around and HEY WATCH OUT NOW!

"C'mon" he declares with this big goblin grin slapped on his face "Let's get out of here and grab a drink!"

"Where?" I ask more curious than cautious. It's almost midnight but i've only been up for less than an hour. I got a little energy to burn myself.

"The Yacht Club. There's a friend of mine in town and..." his cell phone rings. He answers it quick draw style off the hip, he spins around, slows down and starts pacing the floor again.

Sunday: It's been coming down steady since I woke up. I stand under the skylight watching the rain drops flatten against the window. I feel like i'm underwater watching the ripples of a passing storm above me. I'm listening to a Tibetan Buddhist Funeray Chant on WREK's 'Weekend Cornocupia'. Sandalwood incense drifts from my room and snakes into the kitchen-dining room. The vibrational residue of the LBR has left me with a detached sense of calm. The names of the angels seem to still cling to the echo of the hum in the air.

The chanting of the monks is interupted by spikes of static off the radio. An electric hiss rises up. Floods over the music of the prayer, drowns it out completely until all you can hear is this incessant crackling. It remains like that for a minute then a single drum beat will reverbetate over the din. Then another. The hiss segues slowly out of the noise, ebbing back into the rising tide of a monosylabbic chant.

I absorb it quietly, this waxing and waning between song and static.

As above me the rain taps on the skylight indifferently.
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Sleet coming down in a steady drizzle. Gray sunless sky dark as dusk and twice as nasty. A light mist shivering on a steady wind. Black ice waiting like a wink behind a skeletons eye patch.

Yep, no doubt about it. Looks like I picked myself a great day to start my driving lessons!

Fuck it! There'll always be excuses and i'll always be tempted to coddle my nerves with promises of 'tomorrow' if I should put it off today. Besides if I can learn to drive in this shit, then it stands to reason that I should be able to handle most other road conditions fairly easy. *crosses fingers*

Heading out now. Wish me luck!
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August 20th, 2006
~Rob M.

It was one in the morning last night when the Jagermeister shots kicked in and the DJ played "Janie Jones". One of my unwritten rules to life is that whenever one has a chance to dance to The Clash one absolutely must! So I left Teddy Bear & Magpie at the bar to watch my drink and made my way up to the floor. It was packed shoulder to shoulder. I had to squirm through the outer ring of 'shufflers' to get a decent spot. 'Shufflers' are people who can't or won't dance but insist on being out on the floor anyway. They stand there around the perimeter, doing the meat market two step: That's one foot to the left, then (with no apparent regard to the beat or the rhythm), they lift one foot back to the right, swaying their upper torsos listlessly as they desperately press their drinks into their chests. Hence 'shufflers'. Though here in Atlanta it's also known as Buckhead Ballroom Dancing.

Luckily I found an opening by two toxic blondes. They dance cute. They know the song. They're in love with rock'n'roll... woaahh! They're in love with gettin' stoned... woaahh! They're in love with Janie Jones! But they don't like they're job, noooo...oah! I let Strummer & Jones take me over LOA style. I ride the machine gun fire of the drums. I explode with the guitar bursts smooth. I move with the grace and the fire. I sing out the words loud:"But the boss at the firm always thinks he shirks/But he's just like everyone, he's got a ford cortina/That just won't run without fuellll... FILL 'er up, Jacko!".

The DJ reads the floor right. He reads the vibe and the mood crystal clear. He roles the beat right into Billy Idol's 'Dancing with myself'. The floor lets up a quick drunken cheer. More Shufflers stagger up to the ring from the bar. We get mass spillage. The Toxic Blondes are shimmying. Their expensive bangs swing wild in their faces. Their eyes flash revealed, veiled, revealed. Some cat with a fauxhawk is clapping along to the song. His woman is shaking that ass stupid. Three Frats are doing some hip-hop stomp they must've seen in a video somewhere. Check out the skinny chick with the Frank Sinatra hat going ballistic. I catch a quick flash of her naked in my imagination, she's bent over a few lines of quality and still wearing that hat. Look at the little asian guy in the Reservoir Dog suit go. Look at him shimmy through the mob like they're not there. Little Asian Guy slips on a wet spot on the floor. He goes down. He catches recovers with a flat palm down and pops back up immediately like it was just one more move in his repertoire. Little Asian Guy is my new hero!
In which our hero shakes his rumba! )
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June 11th, 2006
~Rob M.

The best job I ever had was working in Purgatory.
Ruminations and such )
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In a just a couple of hours i'll be sipping Jack & Cokes somewhere over the clouds and on my way to enjoy a sucker-free two weeks on holiday! Well, that or i'll have been taken down by over enthausiastic TSA agents who've somehow mistaken my bottle of cologne for some form of home made flame thrower. I believe the TSA base it's list of items forbidden for air travel by reviewing old episodes of Macgyver.

TSA Agent 1: "Well let's see here.... the passenger has three paperclips, a stamp, a bottle of mouthwash and the latest issue of Sports Illustrated."

TSA Agent 2: "My God man... he could kill us all!"

Incidentally, i'm still wondering how it is that I can't bring a can of shaving cream on board the plane but apparently if I was to turn my cell phone on mid-flight we'd all go careening into the ocean? Really, is that right? You mean to tell me it just takes a few maniacs armed with a couple of NoKia's to take down a plane?

Just curious, that's all.

Anyway, the real reason for this post was that I wanted to do a list of some of my favorite things from 2006 ( within the realm of pop culture). "Television, movies and comics" as the old Pop Will Eat Itself song goes. So, without further ado....

Favorite Comic Book: NEXTWAVE - Agents of H.A.T.E.
Writer: Warren Ellis (aka the Ambrose Bierce of the internet)
Artist: Stuart Immonen

Read more... )

Favorite Book:World War Z
Author: Max Brooks

Read more... )

Favorite Movie: A Scanner Darkly
Director: Richard Linklater.

Read more... )

Favorite CD: The Audience Is Listening.

Read more... )

Favorite TV Show: Heroes

Read more... )

Okay, if you've made it this far, thanks for reading.

My next reports will be dispatched from sunny Orlando, Fl.

Ciao for the niao dahlinks
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Santa's not much of a gentleman is he?

One thing about Christmas that hasn't changed since I was a kid, is the way clocks start trickling seconds out like an IV drip the closer one gets to vacation. Each drop of minute seems to percolate in mid air, gathering up enough gravity to finally overcome the inertia of expectation, where it finally drips into the next second.

This always reminded me of the scene in STII: The Wrath of Khan, where Spock explains to Admiral Kirk that while he was trapped in the Genesis Cave that time would be distorted so that: "...seconds will seem like minutes, minutes will seem like days ...", in other words it would almost be like Kirk was forced to watch an entire episode of Star Trek: Enterprise!


Another thing that hasn't changed over the years is how down right creepy I find those little kids singing "Christmas Time is here" during the segue scenes in 'A Charlie Brown Christmas'. I can't help but think that at best the song represents a bitter sweet reminescence of a childhood innocence long gone. At worst I figured it was the echoing chorus of children who were mysteriously, but never the less gruesomely, murdered during the '65 winter of Schultzville, USA. I can almost picture Nick Cave doing a cover of it ... or Boyd Rice.

A new tradition seems to have taken hold here in the "A-T-L" though. Strange Santa sightings on the railways of MARTA. Last year I wrote about a quick Christmas Story I was fortunate enough to witness.

This year the sightings continue.Read more... )
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"Hello there Mister Po-lease Man" the little girl says to me as she makes her way to the playground, "You gonna arrest somebody?"

"I don't know..." I answer thoughtfully, scratching my chin in slow diliberation, "I guess it all depends."

"On what?" She says her voice dripping with equal amounts of demand and contempt.

"Wellll, sweetheart it's like this... if the next doughnut I get is jelly filled then nobody gets arrested tonight. But i'll tell you this for free, if I all I get is a Boston Creme..." I suck a hiss of air through my lips, "well let's just say somebodys going down."

She bunches her face up in confusion, her little hands balled into fists and thrust into the side of her hips, she wants to say something to me but her mother is calling from a park bench in the adjoining playground.

"Girl you leave that man alone and get over here right this minute."

She looks up at me with the hardened suspicion of an old soul in the know, a look tha's tragic coming from the face of one so young. I answer that look with a playful wink, trying to hot wire a smile off her. Instead she turns around and runs off as her mother shouts a warning regarding the perils of her having to repeat herself. I catch a glimpse of the Mom grabbing her by the wrist and hissing a dire reminder at her.
"What'd I tell you 'bout not talkin' to no police man".

I figured I could have corrected her, told her that i'd rather wear 'cuffs than a badge any day of the week. In fact I could have pointed out that the surest way you could tell that I wasn't a cop is by the simple fact that this neighborhood could desperately use one right now. Unfortunately since this neck of the hood has no loft spaces for sale, three-dollar-a-cup coffe shops or resteraunts that sell ten dollar sandwiches with a salad as a side that the odds of finding Johnny Law here after dark is roughly the same as spotting a twenty dollar bill on the sidewalk in broad daylight. Not impossible sure, but you wouldn't want to bet on it.

Still i'd rather have the locals make me for the law than for an easy buck. Though to be honest if anyone were to roll me right now they'd be doing it strictly for the practice. My ass is flat broke right now. Still I imagine there might be a few bucks to be made off my baby. Speaking of which I finish readjusting the chain, I flip her over, check the wheels - solid and hop back on her and start to make my way down Boulevard.

It's Saturday night and right now I got no love, no money and no friends to speak of. All I got going for me is my camera, a full pack of Camels and a mountain bike. It's odd but I realize that my conversation with that little girl was the longest i've spoken to somebody today. I remind myself that silence is good for me, but instead decide to sing a very off key rendition of Nick Cave's In The Ghetto. If i'm lucky someone'll pick a fight, if i'm realllly lucky i'll win it.

I navigate through a trio of blunt smoking young men dressed in black arctic wear. I pop the curb onto the street after a beligerent midget tries to make a grab for my handle bars, slurring out the accusation of -"Thas' my bike N____a!". I glide past an old lady waddling slowly down the road, plastic grocery bags swing in cadence to her steps, singing gospel music at the top of her lungs with the infamous white iPod headphone cords dangling down from somewhere under a squirrel gray wig. I wave at a group of kids yelling 'RIDE CHILLY WILLY RIDE' at me from across the street.

It's hard to believe this, but whenever I miss the Apple, I come down here to Boulevard for a little taste of home.

A few minutes later and i'm cruising through Cabbage Town. I pull over to light up a smoke on Carrol Street just as three young ladies are walking towards me from the bar. All of them are huddled under expensive coats and their soft faces seem to float over brightly colored scarves. One of them is trailing behind the other two who are speaking in the truncatated bursts of "Rillly" and "Oh my Gawd!". The straggler is probably the 'Cute One' I would imagine. From what little training i've had with socializing I recall that single women, when in groups of three, break down into one of three archetypes: First there's 'The Fun One'. Usually blond, usually has the loudest laugh and if one could sprachen the dull sufficently would be the easiest to get into bed. Second up is 'The Bitch'. This is the alpha female of the triad, the one who decides where the other two are going and is the most dangerous when drunk. Because most guys think that general bitchiness is a sign of sexual performance, she is the most sort after and therefore hardest of the three to land in bed. Finally there's the Cute One, who due to western societys obsession with anatomically impossible women, is the one who has to try the hardest.

This paticular 'Cute One' has a button nose with a small sprinkling of freckles poured over her chipmunk cheeks. She has big dark eyes that look around her rather than simply at what's ahead of her like the shark forward stare of her other two friends who walk around me as if I didn't exist (and who knows? Maybe I don't). I'm having a good laugh at my own invisibility just when the Cute One stops and turns to me.

"Excuse me?" She says with a voice marinated in a soft melody.


"Would you happen to have an extra one of those?" she says pointing her chin at the cigarette dangling from my mouth. I look at her for a second, taking in those curves that are obvious even under the insulation and those dark eyes sparkling. Then it hits me. She reminds me of someone long gone and better off for it. There's this ache that tugs at the center of the chest just from thinking about it.

"Sure" I flip open the pack and give it a little shake so the smokes pop out for easy access. She plucks one gingerly, I light it for her and she leans in close to flame so that her face lights up a bright orange. She's really quite beautiful I realize. She glances up and thanks me.

"No worrys" I shrug.

She then begins to step quickly in an attempt to cover lost ground as her friends round the corner. I take a long drag watching her hurry along but then just as she's about to turn the same corner she turns and smiles at me. I give a little wave.

Then she's gone. Just like that.

I close my eyes for a second, allowing the taste of that smile to linger fresh on the memory for a quick minute. What if I could just...? But nah, I know who I am now, I know what i'm not and I know what's expected of me. Good for a laugh and that's about it. I kick off the pavement with a shove of my boot and begin a slow ride back home.
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Be strong
For we all must bear the burden of character.
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Three floors up and from my parents balcony I watch the Swan Boats sail over the still waters crackling silver from an early afternoon sun. They are piloted by families, couples and friends across the cup of lake below. I smile as they navigate around the fountain that sits just off center of the lake or drift carefully through flocks of insolent ducks like a submarine crawling through a mine field. It's a little odd these anachronisms from a Edwardian picnic, these refugees from a theme park seeking sanctuary in an Impressionistic landscape. It's almost as if the menagerie of a carousel had come to life late one night and escaped from the loop of the merry-go-round. Where the horses trampled down the gates of the carnival and rode off to freedom, the Swan carriages took flight and after many long days and nights of searching, decided to take nest in Manet's Luncheon on the Grass. But then again this is Orlando, Florida and one must expect to see rides somewhere.
Read more... )
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There's a Numb sun in my eyes, grease on my fingers, a rattle on the chain, i'm down to my Fred Flintstone brakes with three drags left on the smoke between my lips and here I am gliding to a stop in front of the Ruins of Dekalb Avenue. I dismount my baby, chain her up on the down low behind some overgrowth. I check out the security. I'm looking at ten feet of fence topped with barbwire frosting. I spit out my smoke and light up another. I pace the perimeter like a tiger at the zoo. I'm losing the dusk shadows quick. The wind soaks my bones in Autumn but i'm too cold to shiver right now. I catch a squad car coming up left two blocks down. I turn around slow, drop to a squat, wrap my arms around my legs, bury my chin in my chest and hide my face between my knees.

I watch them pull right up to me and then slow down to a crawl. I look up from my huddle at them with wide empty eyes and a shoot them a desperate look of raw anquish. Through the window I see the passenger nod at me to the driver. This is it I figure: Questioned, frisked, requestioned, IDed, named and warned... and that's if I get my bullshit story straight the first time... but nope, they speed up with a rev of the engine, gun it hard down the block and vanish around the corner. This is something my friend Bud taught me a long time ago: That the most effective way to hide from the law is too look like you need the law like never before. In fact the more you look like you need them, the less likely they'll see you.
Read more... )
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11:25pm-Outside the Abbey

We've been standing on line for about forty minutes now and have moved a grand total of thirty feet. That's not even a foot a minute for those of you too lazy to do the math. Now if you look from across the street you'll see me right there. Yep, that's me inching my way to the awning, decked out in a dark blue pinstripe suit jacket, black velvet trousers, a Virgin of Guadalupe button-up and a black with silver highlighted Luchadore mask. The Magpie is in front of me, yeah that's him... done up smooth in the bondage gear with a bowler hat, looking like an S&M version of a Clockwork Orange Droog. As you can see we're tightly sandwiched betweeen a Green Beret with his demure little piece of chicken gufawing at the other costumes and the guy behind us dressed up as some kind of clown-pimp along with his old lady, who is working 'ye-old-medieval-fairy-in-a-corset-routine'.

"You know what this is like?" I ask the Magpie with an excitement that makes the question completely rhetorical.

"What?" He says bored with the answer already.

"It's like what Dragon*Con would look like if it was held in Buckhead." I answer with that smug sense of satisfaction I get whenever I think i'm being witty.

"Heh" The Magpie nods forgetting what i've said already, "Hey look! We're moving."

It's true. We take four steps and stop. We stand there about five minutes when a skinny Jesus of Nazareth squeezes in between us and the Green Beret, and makes his way up the grassy hill, with a homemade cross bigger than him being dragged behind him on his back. He makes his way up to the front of the entrance where he's promptly stopped by the cop they got working the door.

Jesus waves for back up. Two blond pieces of euro-skank emerge from behind the door and wave back. "Heyyyy...let Heem in. He'ssss'lright...." They testify with a slur of strange accents. The cop just stands his ground, eyeballing the Son of God, not quite sure if he's really 'alright' or not. Finally, an Edwardian era valet(complete with powdered wig, sparkle gold valet uniform with matching gold stockings) slides out from between the euro-skanks, gingerly walks over to the Cop, whispers in his ear and then promptly disappears back from behind the blond veil from which he appeared.

The cop nods and Jesus is allowed into the Abbey.

Friends in high places and all that.

Ten minutes later we move another four feet.



Oct. 3rd, 2006 10:22 am
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"Frankenstein's Castle"
The Old Croton Aqueduct Trail, Van Cortland Park
Yonkers-Bronx, NY

Read more... )
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It was only ten minutes before noon when our office was struck by a sudden and unexpected tragedy. A few of my coworkers are hovering over the walls of their cubes like an impromptu gathering of Jack-In-The-Boxes to discuss it:
"We're trapped." an owl faced woman sighs helplessly to the group.

"How long are we gonna be stuck up here? I'm getting hun-gry!" her friend snarls lighting off a chorus of discontent across the floor.

"Someone needs to do something and quick!"

"It's just not fair..."

"...yeah I mean what're we supposed to do? Sit here and starve!"

"I can't believe this is happening to us..."

"Hi. I need to place an order for pick-up. Uh-huh... yeah I need a Tuna Melt on wheat; lettuce, tomatos and pickles... ten minutes? Alright..." I hang up and see that the Jack-In-The-Cubes are eyeballing me all shock and awed like. "What?"

"You know the elevators broken right?" the Snarler says looking at me suspiciously.

"Yeah... figure i'll just take the stairs and walk down there ..."

"You're crazy!" one of them almost hisses.

"Never mind that... what I wanna know is how you gonna just do us like that?" The Snarler accuses and before I can say 'do you like what?'"you're just gonna abandon your coworkers and let them go all hungry!"

"We're only four floors up." I say.

"And?" The Snarler says shooting me the stink eye.

"Well.. um... you could just walk down..."

"You're crazy" the Hisser practically shrieks in disbelief.

"I ain't walkin' all them stairs"

"That's too much like excercise"

Yep it's almost lunch and the two elevators have broken down. Now we're all apparently prisoners of the fourth floor. Some of my coworkers are on their cell phones pleading with delivery men to walk the four flights of stairs and cursing them out when they refuse. Others are resigned to dining from the vending machine and those of a more charitable disposition have decided to share their bagged lunches with their less fortunate coworkers.

I'm sitting here at my desk trying to figure out when my life went from an episode of The Office to the latest spin off of Survivor.

"Look there's only thing to do." the Snarler declares with the level headed authority of an Emergency Worker, "Rob... you have to get us all lunch."


"... it's the only way we can all eat."

"You can't just walk..."

"I told you he was crazy..."

"I'm not gonna spend my entire lunch break playing delivery boy..."

"So you're just gonna do us like that, huh? I mean I thought we were friends Rob."

They all stand there now quietly waiting for my answer.

45 minutes later and i'm climbing up the fire escape stairs, my arms stuffed with styrofoam cartons packed with various sandwiches, lunch specials, combo meals, plastic silverware, napkins and four dollar slices of chocolate cake. It occurs to me that i'm not on Survivor as I speculated earlier. I'm actually on Lost and i've been given the role of John Locke, the groups hunter-gatherer-survivalist-shaman.

'Oh well' I tell myself approaching the landing to the fourth floor, 'at least i'm not the Comic Relief for once...'
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He doesn't see me. He's just all chill and checking out the new kitchen. I step quietly towards him the fear amplifying every nerve in my body. He begins to turn. This is it. If I don't do this now I lose the advantage of surprise.

"Die you filthy mother-fucker!" I scream suddenly, whacking him across the length of his entire body and dropping him down to the ground. I leap back trying to see where he's landed but he's gone on stealth mode. My skin breaks out in goose bumps. I can feel him out there hiding in the shadows. Watching me. Waiting for the perfect moment to come scurrying out of ambush and come crawling up my leg.

There is only the silence of extreme expectation.

I step forward to kick the sink cabinet doors closed. That's when he makes a break for it across the kitchen floor. I go to smash the little fucker with my sandal and that's when his back opens up into a pair of wings and he flies up after me.

I scream in terror and make it back to my bedroom slamming the door just in the nick of time!

'My god this one can fly' I think to myself. What am I going to do? I can't just hide in here for the rest of the night. I have to go out there eventually. Where he'll probably make a kamikazie flight straight into my mouth. From there he'll crawl right down my throat and hatch it's filthy brood in my guts. Thousands of them will hatch in my stomach and begin colonizing the inside of my body, converting my organs into some hideous insect hive. Soon they'll take other my brain and i'll be a walking palmetto zombie bug factory. They'll have to shoot me, in the forehead no less, overwise i'll just get up again and go all George Romero on their asses. This is horrible! They'll have to have a close casket funeral and my parents will sit there in tears, their only child another victim of the Insect Peril.

I can't be a coward now. I have to be strong. Not just for me but also because I got my Mom & Dad to think about. I have a girlfriend i've never met and then there's my best friend Bill, who'll probably be the one who has to take me down (he has agreed to be the one to put a bullet in my brain in case I should ever contract the "Zombiitist"). Shit, what about my Live Journal for that matter? Who'll post non-sensical comic book covers if I go to that big blog in the sky all of a sudden?

This would be a good time for Jesus to show up!
"Rob... Rob what's the matter my son?"

"It's a nasty ass phantom fighter palmetto bug, Jesus!"

"What?!?! O man I just hate those little fuckers... y'know the only reason DAD made them was to give me the heebie jeebies... sorry kid you're on your own here... ewwww palmetto bugs..."

"Gee thanks loads Jesus! Now you see why the Buddhists get my vote!

Okay, this is it, no more fooling around! I'm armed with only a single flip-flop and I slowly creak the door open. Bill Paxton's astral body hovers behind me doing his whole 'we're all gonna die man... game over! Game over!' routine. I shoo him back to the corner of my pop culture haunted subconscious and step out into the kitchen cautiously.

So far, so good. The coast is clear. Maybe, just maybe, he's left for some other... oh shit! There he is crawling along the wall behind the coffee maker like he owns the fucking joint!

"DIE YOU SON OF A BITCH DIE-DIE-DIE!" I scream and slap him with the sole of the flip-flop with a large bang. It just fazes him a little and he drops down to the counter. "FUCK YOU" I yell and slam the fucker with a flip-flop shot that smashes his exoskeleton into a biological car wreck. "DIE!!!" I yell again and proceed to hammering him into a pulp of smashed organs.

I'm shaking from the adrenalin rush. I can't stop trembling. I look around scanning the kitchen for any possible back up. I check the ceiling. I check the doors. Eyes tick tocking back and forth and a sheen of panic sweat forming a film over my body. Nothing. This must have been their champion... sent by his people to slay me and rid his land once and for all of the evil giant. Or what if he was merely a scout? What if this was just a test? What if next time there's a whole squadron of the flying fuckers?

I can't believe I live in a country where this is allowed to go on. I can't believe that the President (any president not just our current Chimp-in-Charge) has allowed the American people to be held hostage by these hideous demon bug invaders. To quote the great Homer J Simpson: "Did we lose a war? That's not America... that's not even Mexico!"

I light up a smoke and sit on my bed waiting for my heart to slow down. I've won a skirmish but the battle for the attic has just begun!

"Get away from my kitchen, you bitch!"
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From across the nefarious underbelly of the Bible Belt they came! Descending upon a sleepy little town called Atlanta to engage in a four day geek orgy of sin known as... Dragon*Con: The RPG Junkies rattling their D20's in a desperate bid to score their next fix of 'Saving Throw'. Sith Swingers eyeballing unsuspecting young Jedi's in the lobby like pimps at a Grey Hound Station. Comic Book ghouls hissing and haggling over mylared kitsch and reeking of moldy pages. Roaming wolf packs of Klingon bikers sniffing the air for a whiff of fist fight. Poorly aged B List actors, with their tanned skull faces smiling mechanically, scribble their name across 8 by 11's for 20 bucks a pop. Shadow Children gather like gargoyles over the hotel balcony, chain smoking cloves through Kabuki make up and refining the aristocratic art of being perpetually bored. Nostalgia Merchants selling relics of abandoned dreams - mint condition action figures, unopened model kits, replica helmets and limited edition variants. A vampire dominatrix huddles at the bar with a pair of office bureaucrats who get off when they cross dress up as pirates. A Subgenius preacher shouts the gospel of BOB to a mob of bewildered superheroes while a Jesus Christ look-a-like bums a cigarette from a cardboard robot.

Somewhere in all this commotion a young lady smiles at a nervous young man. A few drinks later and they close their eyes for that magical first kiss. She see's him as Spike, Captain Sparrow, Neo and Han Solo all at the same time. He see's her in turn as Buffy, Wonder Woman, Seven of Nine and Princess Leia.

Neither one of them is mistaken.

So if you think all this is 'Revenge of the Nerds Redux' then you're in the wrong movie. The truth is that for four days not only has the circus come to town... it's dropped way too much fun on the tongue and now wants to dress up as Darth Vader and make home made porn!

You are invited!!!
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Here's how the classified to my new apartment read: "Delightfully Lovecraftian attic efficiency near the heart of Little Five Points Atlanta. $595 a month w/o Utl. Includes walled in witch & her human faced rat familiar. Skylights and on location w/d."

"Wellll Robert" my potential new landlord drawls out in a voice that is somehow as slow as it is anxious. "what-do-you-think?"

I stand there, hands thrust in my pockets, craning my neck along the surface of the ceiling. I lend my eye the bored cruelty of an art critic, searching beyond the surface, beyond the obvious and going deeper into the details until I can find a flaw and pluck it out of the pool of vision to hold up victoriously before him.

The walls resemble the set of "The Cabinet of Doctor Caligari", shifting slightly in height as you step from left to right, disappearing into the sudden stab of an angle off the ceiling, shrinking into cabinets or exploding suddenly into an empty chunk of space. There is only closet in the place. It stands at just under four feet, has no door and stretches across the length of the bedroom. I can imagine hiding in there when the law is at the door or the inevitable zombie apocalypse strikes. Whichever happens first. There's a huge bathroom that reeks of ghosts and candle wax. There's a new A/C, space heater and refridgerator. There's a kitchen that looks like it was modeled out of a Bukowski novel. There's two doorways into the apartment one at the front and one at the back. Both open into narrow passageways that snake and wind into the second floor landing, which also has two sepearate exits leading to the first floor landing or out into the parking lot. That's good because I feel better when there are at least two ways in and four ways out!

"Well what do you think?" I ask my friends a month later. The three of them are gathered around an island of deconstructed furniture, cardboard boxes stuffed with books and roughly two and half tons worth of comic books stacked in plastic crates. The Attic has been set on BROIL since I was last here and agreed to sign the lease. My friends cast weary eyes at me through a sheen of sweat. Tired. Hung over. Bored and beat. They look around at the 'Non-Eucleadean' Geometry, nod to themselves in an exhausted agreement and tell me:
'It's you!'

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"One distinct advantage literature holds over cinema" I tell my friend, an aspiring director of sorts "is that unlike movies nobody ever does a remake of a book."

My friend answers with a single arched brow, which always resembls the string of a bow being pulled taut before firin as he takes a prolonged sip off his espresso. The last few years of our friendship have taught me that this combined gesture translates as:'I can neither deny nor confirm this statement, so I will withold judgement until you elaborate further on your initial proposal'. Of course sometimes it means: 'I don't know what the hell your babbling about now man, so i'm just going to nod along and watch the waitresses until it's my turn to talk...'

"I mean really, could you imagine ummm... whassisface the guy who did Fight Club...?"

"Brad Pitt?" He shrugs the answer out maintaining a steady vigil on the young Hindi waitress who is clearing off the adjacent table.

"Nooooo..... the author. Chuck Palindrome or somethin'..."

"Palahniuk" he answers matter of factly now, sneaking one of my smokes out of my pack like he was performing some kind of sleight of hand trick all the while shaking his head in awe of the more obvious physical virtues of the departing young waitress.

"Yeah him! Can you imagine Chuck Palahniuk announcing that he was going to 'Remake' Moby Dick?"

My friend turns back to me, tilting his head a little to the left then the right and back to the left again. This translates as: 'What the fuck are you on about now?'.

"Seriously man, picture the press release or the Times interview where he'd be all like: 'You see i've always been a big fan of the Melville classic, but just thought that it needed to be ... well updated for the 21st century. That's why i've changed Moby Dick from a 'Whale' to a 'shark'..."

"A 'shark'?" My friend asks incredulously

"Oh yeah. Shit... and that's only the beginning! Why not change Ishmael into a little kid? Tap into that whole Harry Potter market... and while we're at it... let's make Queequeg a pet monkey or something... marketing says you can't go wrong with a monkey..."

"A 'shark'?" he repeats and you can tell by the way his brow is furrowed that he's picturing Ahab, as played by Roy Schneider, muttering to old Moby Dick: 'Smile you sonuvabitch...'

"Sure and why stop there? Why not have Danielle Stelle remake 'Pride and Prejudice'... y'know sex it up a bit. Let Stephen King have a crack at Goethe's 'Faust'... Grisham's 'A Tale of Two Cities'... hell why not make it 'A Tale of Three Cities' and one up old Dickens?"

"Alright enough already!" he snaps.

"Alright... just making a point thas' all."

We sit there quietly for a minute.

The cafe has Massive Attack dropping off the XM radio. Outside the rain falls down on Carroll Street. The Hindi waitress is laughing with the sunshine blond over by the register. Sound of silverware on plates, the clinking of glasses, the muffled rumble of brunch conversations. We light another round of cigarettes.

"Jesus Rob...a 'shark'?" my friend snickers shaking his head at the thought of it, "Y'know now that you mention it... i'm kinda surprised they haven't gone ahead with it."

"Yeah... me to to be honest."
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It's the humidity that brings them out. The human bugs crawling out of the asshole cracks of the city. They can smell the 'artist' on me I guess and figure me for an easy mark. Now to be honest most of these cats are just down on their luck and wanna make me for some change. No worrys there. A buck or whatever i've got under and they nod me a small thanks and make their way to wherever it is they've got to go. It's the others that bother me. The Hungry Ghosts of the Bardo Terminus.
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While money can't buy you love, it could on a Friday night in Downtown Atlanta, rent you a delightfully accented french woman to be your slave for 30 minutes. Or maybe you'd prefer the gregarious Tranny with the nice tits? How about the Steve Reeves with a gut look-a-like? Not to your tastes sir, well then, there are a flock of cherub faced and half naked young ladies strolling around, who would love to be bought, collared, used, abused and set back into the wild... for the right price of course.

This was my first slave auction and I must admit I had quite a lot of fun, even if I was only window shopping. I did take part in the bidding process however. I wanted to get a friend of mine a couple of play toys since it was her birthday a few days ago, and since I had a decent amount of fake walking around money I figured I would give the gift that could be ordered to keep on giving.

I'm fairly new to the fast paced world of human commodity investments so I had some questions for my fellow night traders: "Can I make my slaves fight each other? Can I make them fight each other in the nude while I hum the fight music from Star Trek? Can I make them hunt down my childhood enemies? Can I use them as body guards? Can I ride them around like I was on Safari? Can I make them perform an interpertative dance based on the mating patterns of werewolves? Can I demand that they "KNEEL BEFORE ZOD!"?"

You'd be surprised by how many of those questions got a 'yes' for an answer.

Sadly though I didn't have enough money to buy my friend the Frenchie she wanted. We did win the bid on the sexy tranny though and had enough change to buy her a couple of friends! I left my friend to play with her new toys and made my way to the bar to hang out with Jim Bean for a bit. While some are submissive to the whip, the collar, the chain and apparently the camera - I remain Mrs. Whiskey's bitch!

Until next time


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September 2016

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