Saturday, October 16, 2004

 

Vive!

Yes, yes, fine. Rousseau and Jefferson are waiting outside. What of it? They are here every day, selling brioches. Get us each one, Derrida, and send them away.

B-but, M’sieu Barnier. I am speaking of Jean-Jacques Rousseau and Thomas Jefferson.

I don’t have time for your jokes, Derrida. Just get us two brioches and a coffee.

I am not joking, Mr. Secretary. They are even wearing typical 18th-century clothing and reek of fish, sulphur and opium. They say they must see you now on a matter of international importance. Something to do with squid, and bugs, and a volcano. Mr. Jefferson says he has a letter from the American president.

Lunatics, then. Call security.

I think you should see them, sir. I think they are the genuine articles.

If this is one of your practical jokes, Derrida, I swear I’ll drop you out of the window onto the avenue.

Please, M’sieu.

[The phone rings.]

Yes, what is it? Yes, this is the minister. Who? Sartre? Jean-Paul? Ohhh, this is the day for jokes, isn’t it? My assistant? Why, yes, he’s here. One moment. [Cupping the receiver.] It’s your ass, Derrida. This is the last joke I’ll tolerate.



[Taking the phone.] Yes, who is it? Jean-Paul Sartre? Why are you crying? You can’t be resurrected? You are trapped in a volcano? I should channel for you? What is this “channel”? How can you be alive? There is no God, yes. No afterlife. What? Squid? You are a squid? You are forced to eat fish? Speak up, I can barely hear you, I—

Let’s be done with this, then, Derrida. Bring in this “Rousseau” and “Jefferson” and let’s have it over so you can have your laugh and I can beat your ass.

[Derrida opens the door. Two men walk in, dressed in coats and tails and hairstyles of the 18th century. Rousseau carries a large squid.]

Oh, Dieu! You reek of fish and sulphur and opium.

[Jefferson speaks.] So sorry. We’ve been busy. Mister minister, this letter is from the president.

Bush?

No. The president. Mr. Lincoln.

Fools. Have your laugh, then. [He opens the letter, reads it.]

This says that Mr. Lincoln has taken over the American government. Legally. By acclamation. It’s on White House stationery.

It’s all true. Turn on your television.

... Chaos in Washington and across the country today, as Abraham Lincoln walked into the Capitol and asked for an immediate impeachment and vote. Assured that such a vote would be unconstitutional, Lincoln then proceeded to open two bug bombs and release them before anyone could knock him off his devil-cow. Over half of the congress fell instantly on their backs and dried up, with their legs in the air. The remaining members immediately elected Lincoln by acclamation. Polls taken across the country show the nation evenly divided, with a slim majority favoring Lincoln. The Joint Chiefs of Staff, speaking through a new spokesperson, a Mr. Booth, have declared that they cannot support Mr. Lincoln, in spite of “sentimental ties” with him. Sources at the State Department say that Mr. Lincoln, operating for the moment out of the studios of National Public Radio, has sent representatives to France to ask for assistance ...

Sacre Bleu! That would be you two? And you, Rousseau? Why now?

I am always at the service of the natural order.

Mr. Jefferson?

A bas le Roi!

So, what can France do? Why do you both reek of fish and sulphur and opium? And why are you carrying a squid?

It’s a long story. Mr. Minister. Let me explain. It has to do with a mountain in Washington, some odd squid behavior in the Pacific, and the need to dream great dreams ... and ... we were ordered to bring the squid, and ...



And?

And there is this.

Merde! It stinks! What is it, a dried squid?



No sir. It’s a former presidential political advisor, we think. It was handed to us by a large skipjack tuna on the voyage here. He said, “take Rove.”

Are you sure?

I can tell you this. We have been followed across the Atlantic by a large black man, wearing coat and tails, a top hat, odd dark glasses, and smoking a cigar. He wants this thing.

You took a ship here?

No, no. A dolphin. The black one was chasing us on a manta ray. He kept insisting he was on our side, a very powerful Loa whom we should trust since he’d been to treatment.

Brandy, Derrida. I must have brandy! Does Chirac know of this?

I don’t know sir. But I do know this is no time for brandy, or doubt, or superiors or prayer.

What are you saying?

It is time to leap into the abyss.

But I feel nauseous.

As you should, sir. As you should. Shall I call the Minister of the Navy?

The two men nodded, placing the squid silently on Monsieur Barnier’s desk. It lay there, flopping its tentacles around and winking at the minister with a round, wet saucer eye.

Then the minister saw it. In the seventh tentacle. A rubber-stoppered vial. He grabbed it.

It was labeled “Om Mani Padme Hum 20mg./ml.”


 

Found In O'Reilly's Blood-Stained Breast Pocket


Death to fish-loving slave-freeing Lincolnites!


 

Bug Spray

"I suppose you think you can just waltz in here with your devil-water-cow and your stinking fish and take over, huh, Lincoln?" O'Reilly starts off hot. "You make me sick. You hated America seven score years ago when that great American hero John Wilkes Booth put a bullet in your brain, you lying liberal, and you hate it just as much today, don't you? Of course you do: I can see it all over your smug liberal face. What are you doing smelling up my studio? Get this liberal slave-freer out of here! I won't have it!"



"You're looking a little green, O'Reilly," Lincoln says dryly. "What happened to you? Did you eat some--bad fish?"

"You sent that little dildo in to slice me up, didn't you? You're behind everything bad that's been happening to America lately. We thought you were dead and buried, but no, there you were all along, living at the bottom of some scummy pond in scummy Central Park, eating scum and plotting the scummy downfall of the greatest country on earth. You sent Karl Rove to kill me. You told Andrea Makris to invent some scurrilous story about me wanting to soap up her big freckly boobs in the shower in some five-star hotel in the Caribbean. You stuck that blowfish down the back of the President's suit coat and made all the traitorous liberal bloggers say that Karl Rove, that Fucky Chucky dildo, was whispering answers to him. Come on, admit it, you filthy liberal. You're the one smuggling fish and guns in to al-Sadr and al-Zarqawi, aren't you!"

"You love the President," Lincoln says.

"You're goddamned right I love the President!" O'Reilly retorts in high dudgeon. "I'm a patriotic American! I'm not like you liberals that go attacking the President every chance they get! I support my President!"

"You're no patriotic American, Bill," Lincoln says calmly. "You're a mantid invader. And Curious George is a Chimp Clone."

"Oh, great," O'Reilly sneers. "Call him names. Just because you love the terrorists so much, that doesn't mean you can come in here smearing the President of the Unit--"

"George Bush starts wars against foreigners," Lincoln says. "And if we reelect him he'll go on starting wars against foreigners. I'm the only American president ever to have started and won a war here at home. And if I'm elected November 2, I'll do it again."

"You'll--what?" O'Reilly looks around, wondering if everybody got this. "You'll start another civil war?"

"You bet," Lincoln says. "Against you."

"Ha!" O'Reilly guffaws. "Against me!"

"Against you and the other mantids that have been taking over this country, infiltrating key government posts, bankrupting the federal government, insinuating your police state laws into the law books, taking over multinational corporations, dumping your toxic effluvia into the world's waters and killing the fish. You're the real terrorists. You're the outlaws from outer space, and I'm going to hunt you all down till you're dead, dead, dead. Like this!"

And with that he pulls a family-size can of Raid out of his wet black coat and empties it into O'Reilly's face. O'Reilly gasps and gapes in disbelief, then begins twitching and buzzing and flailing his switchblade arms about.



Mantid millions watch in horror as Bill O'Reilly, insect hero from outer space, expires on his own talk-show table.

"Listen, America," Lincoln says, turning in his saddle to face the camera, which zooms in close. "Those who deny freedom to others deserve it not for themselves, and under a just God can not long retain it. Let us have faith that right makes might, and in that faith, let us to the end dare to do our duty as we understand it. The probability that we may fall in the struggle ought not to deter us from the support of a cause we believe to be just; it shall not deter me. In your hands, my dissatisfied fellow-countrymen, and not in mine, is the momentous issue of civil war. The Government will not assail you--unless you be mantids. You can have no conflict without being yourselves the aggressors. You have no oath registered in heaven to destroy the Government, while I shall have the most solemn one to 'preserve, protect, and defend it'."


 

Bill O'Reilly's Surprise Guest

"Five minutes to air, Bill," Peter's voice comes over the headset.

"Is, uh, DeLay here yet?" O'Reilly asks.

"Well," Peter says, "there's a tiny little problem there."

"What fucking problem?" O'Reilly yells. A feedback squeak zips around the room.

"His, uh," Peter says, "his office can't find him."

"Can't find him! Can't fucking find him! What do we pay you for? Why aren't you out on the fucking street looking for him, you lazy no-good liberal son of a bitch! I'll rip your arms off! I'll--"

"But," Peter inserts smoothly, who had grown wearily accustomed to this sort of abuse from his boss long before the conservative pundit had come out as an insect from outer space, "we do have a guest for you."

"Tell me it's that pipsqueak fascist Machiavellian dildo Karl Rove," O'Reilly says, loudly, but no longer angrily, "and I'll personally shove him up your tired old fagged-out ass."

"No," Peter says, "it's not that pipsqueak fascist Machiavellian dildo Karl Rove. It's--"

But he didn't have time to say the name before everybody heard the clop-clop-clop of the ex-president's devil-water-cow Bessie entering the Praying Mantis Factor studio. She was soaking wet, as usual, of course--they lived, as the whole world now knew, at the bottom of Turtle Pond in Central Park--and a whole school of live fish flopped in alongside her. And riding her, of course, was--

"Abraham fucking Lincoln!" O'Reilly gasps.

"None other," Lincoln smiles, already miked.

"You're on the air," Peter says.


 

The Praying Mantis Factor

"I don't give a flying fuck what the lawyers say," O'Reilly snaps, flapping his double wings angrily. "I'm going on. And I want you to get that goddamn little murderous dildo Karl Rove in here, and Tom DeLay, and Hermes over at Hermectoral College. I'll lambaste the whole fucking lot of them! And Andrea fucking Makris, too, goddamn it! Where the fuck is she? I'll tear her fucking head off and eat it for breakfast!"

Nobody says a word. He looks around at the shock and horror on their faces. Fox News CEO Roger Ailes looks like he's swallowed his own dick. His senior producer Amy Sohnen is white as a ghost. Peter Zorich, his producer, is examining his fingernails, as if casually, but seems to be hyperventilating. All the associate producers, Kristine Kotta, Kristin Lazure, Shanna Goldner, Nate Fredman, and Makeda Wubneh--and where IS that treacherous lying little big-boobed bitch Andrea Makris?--cower behind Ailes and Sohnen.

"What," he says. "Why won't anybody talk to me on this? Is my fly open?"

He looks down, humorously--but what he sees down there reminds him what they're seeing.

"Oh, I get it. Just because I'm really a praying mantis from outer space, you think I shouldn't go on. Is that it? Is that where we're going with this? I'm the same guy I was before that fucking Karl Rove dildo ripped my host body to shreds. I'm still the same conservative watchdog. I've still got the same family values I had before. I still believe we should eviscerate the Iraqis and bite off the liberals' heads. Come on, people. Don't let appearances get in the way of good conservative talk TV!"

"Face it, Bill," Roger says--"uh, if you really are Bill. People have always been afraid of you. We put you on looking like this, they're gonna run in terror."

"Let em run!" O'Reilly hollers. "The goddamn traitorous liberals! What, are you going soft on me too, Roger? Get Murdoch in here. He isn't fucking scared of me. He knows I earn this network $60 million a year, just by putting the fear of Jesus in my opponents!"

"But Bill," Amy says, "you're a praying mantis."

"So what if I am?" O'Reilly snaps. "Praying mantises PRAY. Are you saying you're opposed to prayer? Hm, Amy? Is that what you're telling me? Our President prays. Do you hate him too? Maybe you hate America, Amy--is that it? Maybe you've got no business working on my show. Roger, do we really want a senior producer who hates America? Amy, you're fired."

"Amy," Roger says testily, "you aren't fired. Bill, calm down."

"I won't calm down!" O'Reilly shouts, his switchblade arms opening and closing spasmodically. "Praying mantises are highly valued in many cultures. Did you know that? Did any of you know that? It is believed that we can cure bedwetting, impotence, cowardice, and a desire to vote for John Kerry! The name mantis itself comes from the Greek word mantes, meaning prophet! A prophet that prays! That's me, you liberal quislings! That's me!"

"Come on, Bill," Roger says, "be reasonable."

"Look," O'Reilly says, suddenly calm. "Here's the bottom line. I am under contract. That's the legal fact here. Got that? I go on or I sue Fox News for big money--for the kind of big money that I earn for this network, and will go on earning if you just put me on camera. Are you reading me here?"

"Uh--" Roger says.

"Good. Girls, book Tom DeLay or Karl Rove. Either or both. And if you do manage to get Karl Rove, I want a fucking cock ring around that motherfucker's arms. He ain't gonna slice this body up on national television!"

"Uh, yes sir," Makeda says.

"All right, all right," Ailes says. "You can go on. But can I make one suggestion?"

"What's that," O'Reilly growls.

"Can we change the name of the show to The Praying Mantis Factor?"


Friday, October 15, 2004

 

At St. Elizabeth's

Yes, I was excited, of course. I was invited to the White House for dinner! Me, a little old lady from Fargo. Just because I wrote the best essay on “Why President Bush Should Be Elected for Life.”

Just tell me what you saw. Nobody’s going to hurt you here.

I’m scared.

It’s okay. I promise.

Well, I was sitting at the table with Laura Bush, some congress people and senator people, you know, elected officials. And there were some White House aides. They had just served the fish.

Uh-huh. Go on.

So I was about to eat the fish when it looked at me and whispered, “Lincoln.”

The fish spoke to you?

Yes, I know it sounds crazy, but that’s what happened. It looked up at me with a big cooked eye, and opened it jaw and whispered.

Is that all it said?

No, it also said, “Olympus.”

What did you do?

I looked around the table to see if anyone had noticed the fish talking.

Had they?

No, I guess not. They were all eating and talking.

What happened then?

Well, it was then that I saw the snakes and bugs.

Snakes and bugs? The ones you were raving about when they brought you in?

They were real!

Okay, okay, calm down and just tell me what you saw.

Mrs. Bush was looking at me funny. She said, are you all right? and that was when the snake peeked out of her ear. A little green snake. It stuck its tongue out and went back in her ear. Then one peeked out of her nose. She seemed not to notice. I screamed and dropped my fork. Then that ugly one, Senator Santorium or whatever, he came over and asked if I was all right. And there was a centipede hanging out of his mouth like a tongue. And a preying mantis peeking out of one of his ears. And then I saw…

What? What did you see?

Everybody at the table was filled with some kind of loathsome creature! There were bugs coming out of everyone, and snakes, and then the fish got up off of everyone’s plates and began flopping around, their cooked flesh flying all over… and I was screaming and screaming… and then I was here.


 

A Hat in the Ring

"Stop kidding. I'm busy.”

“No shit, really. All the stations are carrying it. Come on in here and look.”

He wasn’t kidding. Abraham Lincoln on the TV. Sitting on some sort of huge, red-eyed cow. Addressing an audience of amazed reporters and people off the street.

“I chose Ford’s Theater to make this announcement,” Honest Abe drawled, “because I see this as a rebirth, a new beginning, a fresh birth of liberty. Surely,” he gestured, holding his top hat, “you didn’t expect me to make this announcement at the Republican Convention? My good friend Jesus, here, who resurrected me and brought me here today,” another gesture, to a skinny young man in a white robe with a shiny halo standing on his right, “has convinced me that it is the right time to throw my hat in the ring. I know, I know—it’s only seventeen days until the election. I know I’m dead. I know that a lot of my ideas won’t be popular. But let me ask you this, America: who would you rather have as your president? Me, or some Johnny-come-lately boy no older than a good pickled herring?”

The crowd was cheering madly, shouting “We want Abe! We want Abe!”

“So what do you make of this? Could it be the real thing, or some kind of hoax?”

“How the fuck would I know?”

“You’re the National Security Advisor. Isn’t it your job to know this shit?”

“Buzz off, pal. I have other fish to fry.”


 

Sleep Voting No Hoax, Scientist Insists

By day, they are respected professionals who read online news from four different continents, discuss manufactured consent at the dinner table with spouses and children, and knit their high brows at the thought that Democratic Presidential candidate John Kerry may be selling out to the large corporations.

By night, they sneak out of their apartments and houses to vote for scurrilous right-wing demogogues.

And the frightening thing is, they are typically unaware of their own double lives--because their nocturnal voting derelictions happen while they are asleep.

Or at least so claims Dr. Alphonso Midnight of the Department of Parasomnia at Hermectoral College in Washington, D.C.

"It's natural to be skeptical of these patients' claims to have no memory of leaving the house," Dr. Midnight said in an interview yesterday, "let alone their alarming voting habits. But in NIMH-funded longitudinal studies conducted in my Parasomnia Laboratory here at Hermectoral College, we have determined time and again that they are telling the truth: they really don't know what they do while asleep."

Dr. Midnight confesses with a boyish laugh that over the last eight or ten years he and his associates at Hermectoral College have "experimentally" swung several key elections in Congressional districts up and down the Eastern seaboard, simply by putting their test subjects up at motels near polling places on election days.

With radio-operated electrodes attached to their foreheads reporting their sleep states back to the mobile van lab, these educated liberal subjects have gotten up out of bed, walked to the polling places, and cast their ballots for backwoods right-wing shysters, hucksters, con-artists, and snake-oil salesmen.

When asked whether he would consider running nation-wide experiments with the upcoming Presidential Hermection, however, Dr. Midnight grows serious.

"Certainly not," he says. "Too much rides on this one. The very future of our country rides on the reelect--er, hermection of a strong leader to office."

Parasomnias are sleep disorders. They include sleepwalking and sleep sex.


 

Faithless Hermector Sign-Up

Yes, um, I wanted to sign up to be a Faithless Hermector in the November 2 Presidential Hermection. Do I do that here?

Yes you do, sir. You've found us.

What do I do?

Have you been faithless before, sir?

I've cheated on my wife plenty of times.

That isn't going to be enough, sir.

I've cheated on the girlfriends I was cheating on my wife with.

Interesting. What about party affiliations?

I don't follow.

You and your wife are registered--

Oh, I get you. We're both registered Democrats. But I've cheated on my wife exclusively with Republicans. And once I cheated on a girlfriend with a WWJD skinhead.

Male or female, sir?

Male.

Perfect. I'm sure you're a viable candidate for the College, sir! If you'll just walk down this hall to my left and knock on the door labeled BUG FARM, someone inside will take your information and put you on the list.

Thank you.

You're quite welcome, sir. Next in line?


 

Vote Abraham Lincoln!

Tom DeLay, Majority Whip in the United States House of Representatives, staggers down the sidewalk toward Hermectoral College, buzzing and clicking and surging ominously with the boiling of the liberal cockroaches that have taken over his body.

At an intersection someone bumps up against him.

"Excuse me, mister. Could you possibly help me across the street?"

DeLay looks down at a horribly deformed blind man, about four feet tall, both arms and both legs twisted into pretzels by God knows what childhood disease or birth defect.

"Uh, sure," he says. The man takes DeLay's blattodeified arm. The Walk light comes on and they start across. DeLay thinks: what the fuck am I doing, here?

They haven't taken three exruciatingly slow steps when Tom Daschle comes up alongside DeLay.

"Well, damn," he says, "now I've seen everything! Tom DeLay helping a blind disabled Kerry voter across the street!"

DeLay starts. Kerry voter? He looks down, and sure enough, on the cripple's lapel, big as day, shines a red-white-and-blue Kerry-Edwards button. Oh shit. What has become of him?

"Buzz off, Daschle," he growls.

"What is this," Daschle jokes, "a What Would Jesus Do moment? You got a camera crew following you or something?" He twists around, pretending to look for the camera. "Oh, no, I know: he must be rich. You're trolling for contributions to your PAC. You've already got him on the hook, and--"

Just then the cripple opens his mouth wide and a huge sturgeon slithers out. Daschle and DeLay watch in horrified fascination as the giant fish flops through the air and slaps Daschle hard across the face with its tail, then flops right back into the cripple's mouth and disappears down his gullet.

"The man said 'buzz off, Daschle,'" the fish-man says. "Now buzz off."

Daschle, his left cheek glowing red from the slap, a few scales still clinging wetly to his skin, gulps, glances fearfully at DeLay, and buzzes off.

"Who the fuck are you?" DeLay asks the fish-man.

"You're wasting your time going to Hermectoral College," the fish-man replies. "Hermes ain't there. He's been called to the White House to repair the Chimp Clone."

"Oh," DeLay blinks, "uh, thanks. But you still haven't answered my question."

"Never mind that," the fish-man says. "November 2, vote Abraham Lincoln. He's alive."

At that moment, out of the clear blue sky, a bolt of lightning flashes down just ahead of them and incinerates an elderly woman out walking her Weimaraner. The dog sniffs puzzledly at the ashes, then trots off, dragging its leash behind it.

And then the rain comes down. Instantly everyone on the street is drenched. They will later try to describe it as a cloudburst, but someone will invariably correct them: there were no clouds to burst! It is a thick wall of water falling from the same clear blue sky the lightning bolt dropped out of.

"Sorry to bait and switch," the fish-man shouts over the pounding of the rain, "but--"

And with that he collapses to the street. Out of his clothing flop two dozen sturgeons, steelheads, and pikes. DeLay watches as they swim across the torrent on the street and dive down a nearby rain grate, and thinks: Abraham Lincoln?


Thursday, October 14, 2004

 

In The Registrar's Office, Hermectoral College

Hermes puts his feet up on his desk, careful not to bend the wings on his heels. Just then the phone rings. He makes a rueful face, drops his feet to the floor, picks up.

"Yes?"

"I got this number from the guy at Hermes Repairs. Said you were moonlighting."

"I'm the owner. And you are?"

"Never mind who I am. Top-level clearance. We had another--incident."

"Oh, of course, Mr. Vi--er, sir. Sorry I didn't recognize your voice there for a moment. What happened?"

"I'd rather not discuss it over the phone. But turn on the radio. Pick up a paper. Read about what happened to the Secretary of Defense. The thing's gone haywire again."

"I'll be right over."

Both men hang up. Hermes sighs, tells his secretary he'll be out the rest of the afternoon. Clearly, he thinks, the Bush-head Jerks-on-a-Rope are not working; the Rove doll still is, probably in the hands of some extremely powerful Loa.

He sighs again as he reaches the street and zooms off. If I can't get my hands on the Rove doll, he thinks, I don't deserve to be head god.


 

Donald Rumsfeld Dead in Mysterious Attack

Washington, D.C. (AP)--Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld is dead, victim of a vicious attack by what police are tentatively saying was a crazed liberal with a grudge.

As far as the Secret Service can determine, Rumsfeld and President Bush were alone in the president's helicopter en route to Camp David when the assailant somehow attached himself to the outside of the chopper, possibly with large magnets on his hands and feet, worked his way around to the door, forced it open, and went berserk inside the compartment, slashing Secretary Rumsfeld to death with a knife.

President Bush, a strong leader, did not hesitate. With no thought for his own life, he rushed into the fray, quickly disarming the assailant and sustaining in the process only a few minor cuts and bruises.

In the scuffle the assailant apparently fell out of the chopper through the open door. His body is currently being sought by local Boy Scouts. The Maryland police officers and National Guardsmen who would normally conduct such a search have all been deployed to Iraq.

Unfortunately, the brave president was unable to save his friend and advisor. The attacker's knife had found its mark.

Donald "Rummy" Rumsfeld, 72, an Eagle Scout himself from Chicago, Illinois, who served his first term as Secretary of Defense under Gerald Ford--in 1975 the youngest man ever appointed to that position--will best be remembered by a grateful America for his calm confidence that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction.

His softer side was less well known to the American public. Few Americans know that he was also a poet, who wrote the classic "Unknown Unknowns":

Reports that say that something hasn't
happened are always interesting to me
because as we know, there are known knowns
--there are things we know we know--
we also know there are known unknowns
that is to say we know
there are some things we do not know
but there are also unknown unknowns
--the ones we don't know we don't know--
and if one looks throughout the history
of our country and other free countries
it is the latter category that
tend to be the difficult ones


"Rummy" Rumsfeld is mourned by his wife, three children, fourteen grandchildren, and upwards of 7000 tame mantids.

Next story

 

You Don't Want To See This

And then the driver sees something he knows he'll never be able to forget.

Underneath Bill O'Reilly's bloodied chest, something starts to thump and prod. It looks a little like a cartoon character's heart beating out of his chest when he sees the girl of his dreams. Except, of course, that this chest is slashed to gory ribbons.

Then the thing pokes through. It seems to be a long green arm, bent almost double in the middle, like a half-closed switchblade. It's spiny and serrated, and it begins to cut a larger hole. Then a second green arm emerges, grabs the leather seat, and starts to push and pull until finally an ugly green fly head pops out. It swivels around till it sees the driver.

"Back off," it says in Bill O'Reilly's famous voice. "You don't want to see this."

The driver backs off, but can't take his eyes off the emergence out of Bill O'Reilly's hacked-up corpse of what appears to be a six-foot praying mantis.

By the time the mantid is out on the sidewalk, the driver is cowering behind a tree. The mantid peers through the branches.

"You didn't see this," it says to him. "This isn't happening."

And it stalks down the street on its long legs.

Next story


 

In the Fox News Limo

The door opened. It was raining hard outside. O'Reilly's driver stood in the rain to hold an umbrella over the door opening. O'Reilly was just about to extend one $500 Italian shoe and the tailored pant leg that hung over it out onto the sidewalk in front of the Westwood One Studio building when something moving fast thumped hard into his open door and splashed into the gutter with a little cry.

"You fucking terrorist!" O'Reilly yelled at his driver. "What the fuck are you trying to do to me?"

"Sorry, sir," the driver mumbled. "I'll get it out of your way. Looks like some old dildo or something."

"Dildo?" O'Reilly said, his eyes lighting up. "I love dildos. I love how they look like cocks. Women love phone sex with a guy who gives them a dildo. Pick it up and dry it off. I want it!"

The driver bent over, picked the dildo up with his thumb and forefinger, took it around up front. Somewhere in a side pocket of the driver's area he had stashed a dirty old rag. O'Reilly watched intently from the back, then gave the famous grimace of disgust his fans know and love--the one that signals to his audience that his guest is an Enemy of the State.

"You fucking liberal," he said, "you traitor, you hater of America, you're not going to wipe my dildo off with a fucking oily old rag. Pass it back here. I'll do it."

So the driver passed the dildo back through the window. O'Reilly took it lovingly in his hands.

"My God," he said. "It's gorgeous. It must be a foot and a half long. And it looks like--goddamn if it doesn't look exactly like Karl Rove! I gotta call Andrea Makris. I know she'll want to have phone sex with me now!"

He reached for the car phone and speed-dialed Ms. Makris's cell phone number, exchanging significant glances with his driver as the phone rang.

"Hi, Andrea? It's Bill. Listen, have I ever got the toy for you! I'm gonna bring it right over. Of course I know I'm your boss! That's why I'm the-- No, listen! I want to tell you about my Caribbean fantasy. We fly down there together, see, and check into a five-star hotel, and you're in the shower, soaping up those big boobs, and I come in behind you and take that little loofa thing and start soaping you all over--"

The driver later described the carnage that then ensued:

"That fucking thing went berserk. The dildo, I mean. I mean, it was alive, sort of. Some kinda, I don't know, alien or something. Mr. O'Reilly had leaned it up against the wet bar, and while he was talking on the phone to Ms. Makris and, uh, well, what's the word for it--well, masturbating--that thing started rifling through the drawers until it found a tiny little knife, you know, the kind you use to cut up limes for margaritas. And before I knew it the inside of the limo was speckled with Mr. O'Reilly's blood, and the car was rocking back and forth with his frantic attempts to escape. By the time I could come back around to the side door, Mr. O'Reilly was dead, with his, uh, penis and testicles cut off and stuffed down his mouth and the, uh, telephone receiver stuffed up the, uh--I don't know what to call it--the hole left where his genitals had been cut off. The phone was sticking out about halfway. And that little dildo, or, well, I guess it was actually Karl Rove all along, was standing at the doorway covered in blood and menacing me with the knife. I got out of the way, let me tell you! I'm no hero. I'm just a driver. I don't have a death wish. I stepped back, and little Rove jumped out and ran down the street squealing. And that's all I know, I swear it."

Next story


Wednesday, October 13, 2004

 

That Embarrassing Bulge

Well doc, what wrong with it, er—him?

I don’t know. Suddenly it, uh, he has the worst case of hemorrhoids I’ve ever seen, and they just popped up. I mean, in seconds. Look—they’re the size of peaches. Look at all this blood.

Like he got a stick jammed up his ass.

Why did it have to happen during the debate, dammit? On national television?

Sorry.

Oh, it’s not your fault. Where’s Rove, goddamit? I need spin control!


 

A Dinner Lost

The wino looked down into his small fire. Time to cook up that fish he’d found. God, it was smelly. But, he thought, I’ve had worse. At least I managed to get this bottle of wine with them cans. That’ll wash it down jes’ fine.

He picked up a sharpened stick to spit the fish and began to insert the stick into the rear of his dinner. No sooner did he begin to stick it into the fish’s butthole, though, than the thing began wiggling furiously and whining.

The wino removed the stick and looked at the thing more carefully.

My god, he realized. This isn’t a fish. This is a tiny human. How could that be? Was he seeing things? DT’s setting in? He poked it with the stick again, and again it emitted a high pitched whine, its tiny ugly face screwed up, and its legs began running frantically.

Fuck this, the wino thought, and he put the creature down. He watched as it ran away into the dark night, screaming eeeeeeeeeeeeeeiiiiiiiiii!


 

The Mountain Speaks


It’s still pretty dangerous here on Mount St. Helens, Jane. I’ll keep broadcasting as long as I can. The sulfur fumes are thick.

Okay, Roger.

My name is Peter, Jane.

No, I meant “roger,” as in, okay.

Roger that, Jane.

Okay, Mike, can you bring that shot into the frame?

What’s wrong with the mike?

No, Jane, the mike is fine. I was talking to Mike, the cameraman.

Oh, I see. What is this that we’re seeing at home?

You’re at home, Jane? When did the network begin allowing that?

I meant for our viewers at home. I’m in the studio, Mike.

My name is Peter.

Right. What is that we’re seeing, both here in the studio and at home?

It’s a temple, in the Corinthian style. I’m told it’s ancient Greek, according to Dr. Pasclovich, here. Is that correct, professor?

Yes, that’s correct. It’s apparently a temple erected to Hermes. You can see there, on the architrave, the words in Greek, “Welcome to Hermectoral College Main Campus.”

Hermectoral College? Some sort of a school, then?

No, no, I don’t think so. At first that seemed logical, but what we found inside suggests that it’s actually some sort of elaborate voting fraud organization headed by Hermes.

Voting fraud? They had voting in ancient Greece? Er, I mean, in ancient Greek America?

Greece was the cradle of democracy, of course, but this doesn’t appear to be related to voting in ancient Greece. It appears to be a purely American phenomenon, albeit ancient.

I don’t understand. America is only 228 years old.

The United States, yes. But this is older than that, probably closer to 2,000 years. Inside we have found inscriptions in an Athabascan tongue previously thought to be purely an oral language. Apparently voter fraud has been a focus of American culture since long before the arrival of the United States on the political scene.

Fascinating!

Oh, that’s not the half of it. There’s a prophecy.

Really?

Yes. It says, “When he who bears the simian one comes the mountain will open; when the mountain opens, the college will be in its final session; when the college has its last session all representative government shall come to an end under the one who brings the smirk of the simian one.”

Who is this “simian one”?

I don’t know, but clearly the mountain has opened up.

The prophecy is being fulfilled?

If you believe in that sort of thing, I suppose.


 

Saturday's Game Cancelled

Notice to Hermectoral College students and fans. Saturday's football game against the Sufi University Rumis will be cancelled to enable grounds crews to change the school name in the end zones from Electoral College to Hermectoral College. Though this cancellation will inevitably mean the loss of some television revenues, we do all want the TV cameras to show our new name and not the one flip-flopper liberals have been trying to abolish!

Next Saturday's game against Bob Jones University will be played as scheduled.

Go you HC Mantids!


 

In the Carlton Sherwood Hotel

DeLay staggers down the street, stealing honor as he goes, deciding to buy a newspaper and then--changing his mind. "I decided to buy that paper and then I decided not to," he thinks. "What's up with that?"

He lurches into a nearby Carlton Sherwood hotel. A mantid Moonie at the door tries to stop him, but DeLay walks right through the outstretched arm. Mantids and scarab beetles swarm over him; the liberal roaches inside him blog frantically in response. Seething and boiling coleopterically, he practically falls on a potted ficus, pulls out a clicking and buzzing penis, and pees bug juice all over its trunk.

Two Moonie security guards with long green serrated spiny arms and double wings step up and lock onto DeLay's arms. He throws them off and grabs a mantid nymph from her parents.

"I'll eat this baby!" he growls.

"Calm down," one of the security guards says. "What do you want? What are you doing here? This is a holy place owned by the Unification Church. We are a peace-loving people. Do not harm the girl or you and your liberal friends will regret it for a very very long time."

"I don't want to harm the girl," DeLay says. "Just tell me where Hermes is hiding and I'll let her go."

"We, uh," the second security guard says, "we don't know."

"All right, then," DeLay says, and leans in to bite the young mantid's tiny fly-like head off.

"Okay, okay, we'll tell you! Just don't hurt the nymph!"

DeLay drags the whimpering nymph over to the front door.

"Tell me and I'll let her go."

"He's gotten himself appointed Registrar at the Electoral College," the first security guard says. "He's changed the name to Hermectoral College, and he's going to make damn sure you collectivist liberals never abolish it. It's down on D Street."

"I know where it is," DeLay says.

"We've told you what you wanted to know," the second guard says. "Now let the girl go."

DeLay gives the girl a push and dashes out through the door.


Tuesday, October 12, 2004

 

The Exterminator

DeLay, a former exterminator, knew what he was dealing with as soon as he saw them. Liberal cockroaches. Fuckers. He’d dealt with them before. As soon as you think you have the nest wiped out, they come back again. Some of them were openly gay. He knew that. They knew how to read, and write, and reason. They published non-governmentally-approved things in their little non-mass-media outlets. They convinced other roaches, decent, god-fearing roaches, to join them with their promises of a liberal utopia. They gave powerful insects like him the hives.

But how had they gotten into his kitchen? He had people whose job it was to take care things like this.

He lifted his jackboot to stomp one of them.

And that was when it happened. They swarmed over him like a mass of moving leaves. When they were done, nothing was left inside of the old exterminator. He was just a sheet of skin covered with clothing. The liberal cockroaches climbed in through the mouth and ears, filling the sack of skin. Only someone looking very closely—which nobody did to DeLay—would be able to tell it wasn’t his original guts inside.

The roaches called the driver, and headed for the Capitol. They had an appointment with a guy calling himself Hermes.


 

Alas, Poor Karl

Baron Samedi looked all over his room. No doll. Goddamit, he muttered, I left it right here on the bed. I know I did.

He went to the nurse’s station to complain.

“Yes, Mr. Samedi?” the shift nurse said.

“I left a very important doll in my room when I went to group session, and now it’s gone. Someone has stolen it.”

“Was it about so big,” she gestured, “with a pink head?”

“Yes, yes, that’s it. Do you have it?”

“The janitor brought it to me a little while ago. Said he found it on a patient’s bed.”

“Yes, that’s it. That’s my doll.”

“Oh, I’m so sorry, Mr. Samedi. I told him to throw it away. It smelled like a rotten herring. I assumed it had come up through the pipes like a rat. I didn’t know it was a doll.”

“You threw it away! What the hell!” Baron Samedi pushed back his top hat a little, and thumped the counter with his gold-topped cane. “I want it back!”

“Mr. Samedi, calm down. I’m sure we can get you a nice Barbie doll if you want a doll. That thing was disgusting.”

“No, goddamit! I want that doll!” He smashed a vase of flowers with his cane.

The nurse called security. The guards took Baron Samedi to his room and tied him to his bed. Sedatives were given.

Meanwhile, just outside the hospital, a homeless and hungry wino was poking through the dumpsters. He was surprised to find, not only twenty of the aluminum cans he was seeking, but also a piece of fish. Funny looking piece of fish, with that pink head, but it should cook up okay, he thought. He stuck it in his pocket.


 

"Chimp-Cloners" Spread the Good--er, Word

Houston (AP)--The newest rage among Bush supporters in the last weeks before the Presidential election has some Republican strategists worried.

The group calls themselves "Chimp-Cloners," or just "Chimpers," after the widely disseminated reports that George W. Bush looks like a chimp and actually is a clone.

They are typically well-educated professional young men, in the 18-25 age range. They sit in cubicles all day, working at computer terminals. And on their lunch breaks and while out in the evening, they stand around in large groups with their tongues under their lower lips, scratching their armpits and chanting "Huh huh Internets! Huh huh Internets!"

The nonce plural "Internets" is a reference to an unfortunate remark President Bush made in last Friday's town-meeting debate about what people might be saying about him on the "Internets."

Because of the position of the Chimp-Cloners' tongues, of course, their chant comes out "Huh huh In-nuh-neth!"

At first thought to be Kerry supporters, or possibly even antivote anarchists interested only in making fun of the President's simian qualities, the Chimp-Cloners have now gone on record as admirers of Bush, who are planning to vote for their hero in the November election.

As Lanth Bothey, an assistant IT manager at Pennzoil and one of the leaders of the Houston Chimp-Cloners, put it: "BUTH WOOTH! BUTH FAWEVAH!"

An unnamed source in the White House reports that strategists there are concerned, but uncertain how to respond.

"Where is that damn Rove?" Dick Cheney is quoted as saying. "He'd know what to do with these Chimpers."


Monday, October 11, 2004

 

Group Session

Baron Samedi is sitting in the chair looking very uncomfortable. “Why can’t I smoke? I always smoke.”

“No smoking is allowed in the facility, Mr. Samedi. We went over that completely during orientation,” the counselor notes. “You signed the behavior contract."

"How about if I slip you a twenty?" Samedi asks, pulling out a wad of bills and assorted offerings. "Maybe a watch? A ring?"

"Mr. Samedi, that's very counterproductive to your recovery."

Samedi sits glowering, thinking fucker'll wish for that twenty when I get back to my room and pull out the doll...

"Now, this is a group session. I expect everyone to participate. Mr. Billdoug?”

“I am just so happy to be on the road to recovery. I feel my inner Republican growing stronger every day.”

“Was there a note of sarcasm in your voice, Mr. Billdoug?”

“Don’t be absurd. I am incapable of sarcasm, irony, parody or farce. My medications, you know,” the Mullah says, tapping his skull with his forefinger.

“Hm,” the counselor hums, making a note on a legal pad. “And you, Mr. Siddhartha?”

“Fuck off, you old bat. Goatama Muthafuckah takes no shit from nobody.”

“I see you’re improving, Mr. Siddhartha. Just last week you were still showing some signs of serenity, and then this week, not even one.”

“Bite my ass, you leaky sack of donkey puke.”

“And you, Mr. Yahweh? How are we today?” Long pause. Yahweh stares sullenly at the tiled floor, arms crossed over his chest. “Mr. Yahweh?” Pause. The only sound is the air conditioning. “Ahum. All right, then, Mr. Yahweh,” the counselor warns, “play your little silent game. Play it as long as you want, but you’ll never get better.”

“I will NOT share heaven with Satan! Or any of these, these other wannabes! And that’s final!” Yahweh shouts. “I don’t care what Mary says. If that’s a sickness, well, too bad!” And he crosses his arms again, and sits tightlipped.

The counselor makes a note, clucking slightly. Adjust meds. Yahweh: Oppositional-defiant disorder worse. Increase by 30mg.


 

Valley of the Voodoo Dolls

You’d like me to do what?

Join our team. Become one of us. A partner.

A Voodoo Olympian?

Think about it, doc. Wrap your mind around the possibilities.

But, well, I don’t know. Would I just be a token hire? Or will I really be in the power structure?

No, no. We’re out to really expand our ethnic and cultural diversity here on Olympus. We’ve got scouts out right now in India, Africa, China, the Phillipines, even America and France, checking out all the religions.

Can I throw lightning bolts?

Sure, sure. Everybody gets to sling a bolt or two, now and then.

Well…okay, then. I guess. Where do I sign?

Oh, no no. Heavens. No signing. I just say the word, and you’re in.

Fine, then.

Gooood, gooood. Listen, you do have the, um, doll, right?

The doll?

You know the one.

Oh, that? No, no. I gave that to Baron Samedi. He insisted. Very powerful Loa.

You’re not a Loa?

Me? No, I’m just a medical examiner who happens to practice the Old Faith.

Oh, well, then. Ahem. I don’t know how to say this…

I’m uninvited, right?

Well, you see, we can only allow deities and spirits to join the team, officially. We could make you an honorary Olympian.

No, that’s okay.

Well, okay. Sorry about the confusion. If we ever need an autopsy on Olympus, you're the man, I promise. You wouldn’t happen to know where I could find this Baron Samedi, do you?

Yes, of course. He’s in treatment right now.

Treatment? For what?

Addiction to bribery, I think. They found out over in Legba that he was taking bribes at the crossroads to the spirit world. He refused to stop. That’s why I gave him the doll. He said he might need it while he was in treatment.

Okay, where’s this treatment center?

Here’s the address. It’s a specialty center, for priests, cult leaders, liberals and deities.

How will I recognize Baron Samedi?

He’ll be the one wearing a top hat, black coat tails, sunglasses, and smoking a cigar. Can’t miss him.

Right, thanks.

And your name was what again?

Oh, just call me Vulcan.


 

Christopher Reeve Arrives in Heaven

The first thing I notice is: fuck me, I can walk!

The next is: hot holy damn, I can fly!

And I'm telling God's own truth when I say that it was only the third thing I noticed that the lights were out. Pitch-black dark.

Funny how eight years in a wheelchair can rearrange your priorities.

So I'm flying around like a madman. And when I get tired of flying, I do the Superman running landing thing and walk for a while. I walk around with my head held high, though I know nobody can see it.

Then I hear a little voice.

"Hey mister!"

Very little. Think talking grasshopper voices.

"Uh--where are you?" I say.

"Down here," the voice says. "Lie down on the ground. We'll find you."

So I do, still taking absolute joy in my mobility, and within seconds can feel myself surrounded by little beings.

"Who are you guys?" I say, quietly, so I don't scare them with my big booming Superman voice.

"You don't remember us?" one says. "I'm hurt."

"Fievel?" I guess.

"Not even close," the little guy says. "We're the ones that provided the 22 lines for stem-cell research. The ones that the Chimp Clone allowed scientists to use."

"Aborted fetuses!" I cry.

"You remembered!" the little guy says.

"Wow," I say. "I never thought I'd ever get a chance to thank you guys."

"Yeah, well, there's something you can do for us," another says.

"Anything," I say. "Just name it."

"We know where the light switch is, but we can't get to it. Can you fly us there? We're tired of bumping around in the dark."

"The light switch for--heaven?" I say, amazed. How'd these little guys figure that out?

"What else? You got a, like, shirt pocket or something? We'll just climb in, and you fly us there. Okay?"

So I do it. What the hell! I can fucking fly!


 

Mr. Fix-It

I can't tell you how much I appreciate you making a house call at such short notice.

No problem. I still get around pretty good for a man of my age.

Our, uh, senior technial advisor is away on, um, an extended--business trip. And we just didn't know who else to turn to, to make the necessary adjustments.

Call me any time. You do have my card, don't you?

No, no thanks, no cards. I've got your contact information up here. No sense making things any easier than we have to for our enemies.

Right. I understand.

And you're sure you've fixed the problem? We really can't afford another incident like the other night, yelling at that poor bald man in the audience. He blows his top again and it could cost us the election.

My work is 100% guaranteed.

Excellent. Well ...

I'll be off.

Yes. By the way, I like your sandals.

Oh, you like these?

Those wings--that's like that Roman god guy, right? Mars or somebody?

Mercury.

That's right. Mercury. Haven't studied Roman mythology in decades! Where'd you get those? I might like to pick up a pair myself. Just to, you know, wear around the house. Lynne's always buying me these fleece-lined leather slippers that make my feet sweat like sonsabitches.

Oh, I've had these forever. I don't really remember where I got them, sorry.

No problem. So--

So thanks for calling me, Mr. Vice President--

Call me Dick.

Sure, Dick. Bye now. Call me if it--er, he--malfunctions again.

I will. Thanks.


 

Liberal Irony Disorder

Mullah Billdoug, right?

Right.

Do you know why you’re here?

To get better.

And so you do believe that you have a “problem,” that there’s something wrong with you, that you need to recover from.

Of course I do. Everybody says so, my staff says so, you say so--I'm thinking, how could all those people possibly be wrong? It must be true.

And yet that was an ironic remark too, wasn’t it?

Not at all. I believe it implicitly. In fact, in saying it I have a very strong feeling that I am already on the road to recovery.

You’re having your ironic way with me, aren’t you?

Don’t be absurd. I’ve never been more straightforward in my life.

You think irony isn’t a disease, don’t you? You think it’s a lifestyle choice.

Well, wait a minute. Let’s think about this. You’re a doctor, right?

Not a medical doctor. A Ph.D., but yes, quite.

Your degree is in--psychology?

In a way, yes. My doctorate is in Creationist Foxology, from Rupert Murdoch University.

Foxology, as in Fox News Channel?

Yes. You'd like to make an ironic remark about that?

Heavens, no. What a fascinating degree program that must have been.

It was.

It really must have opened your eyes to the simplicity of the human mind.

Ah now see: that's irony, isn't it.

Good Lord no. I've long believed that the human mind is far simpler than Sigmund Freud and intellectuals have wanted to make it seem.

You're an inveterate ironist. A chronic satirist.

I'm serious!

You hate America, you hate George W. Bush, and you hate me. I know that. It's written all over your liberal face. And you want to make fun of us any way you can. But you know that I hold the keys to your freedom, right here in my pen, right here in what I put in my report. So you're cleverly disguising your satirical remarks as sincerity. But see, that's part of your sickness. That's a symptom of your disease.

My Liberal Irony Disorder.

Your LID, yes.

Can I ask you a question?

Certainly.

Your diagnosis of me is Liberal Irony Disorder. Does that mean your training leads you to diagnose all irony as liberal? Or do you assume that only liberal irony is a disorder?

I don't follow.

Suppose you heard Bill O'Reilly or Sean Hannity make an ironic remark about liberals. Would you assume some sort of pathology there?

Oh, the sickness goes deep in you, doesn't it? You really can't stand being wrong, and it's got you all twisted up inside. Well, let me assure you, Mullah Billdoug: we're here to help you. We want you to get better. We're going to do everything in our power to make sure you kick this LID monkey off your back but good.


Sunday, October 10, 2004

 

Oh, an undecided voter, how nice, I---ARRRGGGH!


Dr. Mgogo grabs the Rove voodoo doll by the balls.


 

Jerk-on-a-Rope™

Edibles Incorporated, how may I help you?

I, uh--I wanted to ask about your edible exercise equipment.

Yes sir! What sort of equipment did you have in mind?

I don’t know, actually. I’m not sure what all you carry.

Perhaps you’d be interested in our edible free weights, or our multipurpose edible weight station? Folds right up and slides under your bed when you’re not using it.

No, you know, I just don’t get all that hungry when I pump iron. Or pump--what, beef jerky? Ha ha.

Turkey jerky, sir. It’s healthier than beef!

Oh, right. Of course. So is all of your exercise equipment made out of turkey jerky?

Yes sir! Indeed it is, sir! We have the Turkey Jerky Thigh-Master™, the Turkey Jerky Rowing Machine™, the Turkey Jerky Stair-Master™, the Turkey Jerky Treadmill™--shall I keep going?

Well, I do have one question.

Yes sir?

How does--eating the equipment affect its structural integrity? I mean, I can see taking a bite out of a Turkey Jerky Dumbbell™: it would just weigh less, right? But what if I took a bite out of a Turkey Jerky Thigh-Master™. What if I was really hungry, and took two or three. The next time I did thirty reps it might snap in two!

Oh, no, sir. Absolutely not! Our engineers have developed a special Neanderfemur™ foam-cell megacompression system that makes our turkey jerky equipment flavorful and easy to chew but feather-light and rock-solid right down to the last bite. You won’t be disappointed, I can assure you! And it’s guaranteed!

Really? You guarantee that your equipment will retain structural integrity down to the last bite?

100% guaranteed, sir. Plus, with a minimum purchase of $100, we’ll throw in absolutely free a ten-pack of Jerk-on-a-Rope™.

Jerk-on-a-Rope?

Yes sir. You’ll never have to bend down for a snack in the shower again! This month we’re featuring celebrity-head Jerk-on-a-Ropes. In a ten-pack you’ll get one Mother Teresa, one Marilyn Manson, one Clint Eastwood, one George W. Bush, one Saddam Hussein, one Larry King, one Elizabeth Taylor, one Michael Jackson, one Morgan Freeman, and one Queen Elizabeth.

Wow. Is it possible to, um, swap any of those out?

Sir?

If I wanted, say, ten George W. Bushes?

I’m sure that could be arranged, sir. Would you like to place an order today, then, sir?

Yes.

Wonderful, sir. And which item or items would you like to purchase?

I'll take the Turkey Jerky Thigh-Master™, please. And ten George W. Bush Jerks-on-a-Rope™.

Perfect, sir. Can I get a name and address, please?

Hermes Trismegistus, Mount Olympus, Greece.

Oh, Mr. Trismegistus, I'm very sorry, but we don't deliver outside of the 48 contiguous states.

Very well. I'll just have to come pick it up in person, then.

Wonderful, sir. Do you know where we're located?

No, but I'll find you. Will you be open for another ten seconds?

Ten--why, yes, sir. Of course. But--

See you then.


 

Denialozine

Have you, Mullah Billdoug, ever taken denialozine, in any form whatsoever?

No I have not.

Have any of your friends ever taken denialozine?

Not to my knowledge, no.

Have you ever discussed denialozine use with a licensed physician?

No. I wouldn’t know how to ask about it.

Have you ever shopped for denialozine at a pharmacy, or on the Web?

No, I have not.

Are you aware that you could be on denialozine right now, and the drug would make you deny it?

I was not aware of that, no.

Now that you know that, would you like to change any of your answers?

Definitely not.

Have you been asked whether you would be willing to take a lie-detector test regarding denialozine use?

No.

Would you refuse to take one?

No, of course not.

Were you aware that denialozine use has been shown to be efficacious in “beating” the polygraph machine?

No, I didn’t know that.

Knowing that, if you were given a polygraph test right now regarding denialozine use, would you be inclined to take some denialozine in order to “beat” it?

Absolutely not.

Can you think of any harmful side effects to denialozine use?

No, sorry, I can’t.

Do you know why denialozine abuse is against the law?

I have no idea.

You're a clever one, aren't you.

No, not at all.

You think you can fool me, don't you?

Never occurred to me.

You think, he's just a shrink, I'm a Sufi mullah, I can tell him anything I want and he'll believe me.

No.

You think shrinks are the lowest of the low.

Certainly not.

Okay, then. Name a profession that's lower than shrinks.

I don't think along those lines at all, sorry. High or low.