DOUBLE WIDEby Jim Parnell
On the Road
Where it goes, nobody knows
So Bubba lost his job again. What a surprise. His resume's got more bullets than a Montana militiaman. Normally I wouldn't care, but now he's got more free time, which means more dreck winging its way to my mailbox...
Slow News Day -- he says he doesn't make these up. I don't bother to check 'em out anymore. I have lost all sense of journalistic integrity.(UPI) Amarillo, TX - Killer bees from South America form a collective and begin implanting mechanical devices in themselves. Sprouting a bewildering array of beer tops and twist-ties, the "berg" issue a warning to the world press: "Rezizz-ztance is futile, prepare to be azz-zimilated."
(AP) Washington, DC - Ted Kasczynski was granted a pardon from President Bill Clinton after receiving a Playdoh kit, and a list of Ken Starr's and his office employees' home addresses. The kit set off the prison's plastic explosive sniffer alarms but could not be detained since it bore the Presidential Seal.
(AP) Malibu, CA - A videotape of Tommy Lee and Monica Lewinski having sex in the Oval Office of the White House has surfaced. The tape, acquired by IGE, appears to have been "significantly altered" in order to hide the true identity of Lewinski's male partner, who is suspected to be a much older, fatter man with abundant salt and pepper hair.
(Enquirer) Somewhere above Roswell, NM - New photographs of Area 51, the top-secret testing ground of advanced US miltary aviation hardware, indicate that the US has developed alien technology, and is suppressing it until actual aliens can be found to pilot the revolutionary new vehicles, this in order to cover up the cover up. A young Elvis Presley, shown here at the controls, has been flight-testing the flying pie-plates inside a time-warp, which has miraculously preserved his youthful appearance.
The Shaming of the Screw -- like the previous, perhaps a little dated and definitely not SF or even F, maybe a little P(ython), yet I have no honor, so it stays:Picture them in Elizabethan finery, with collar ruffs and lace sleeves, brocade coats and hosiery. Starr, as Cromwell, is dressed in drab Puritan black. Bailiffs smack blue bottle flies and gentlemen delicately sniff snuff, in vain hopes of masking the stench of unwashed bodies and other pungent delights...
Hyde: And what hast thou for our pot today, O Mage? Starr: Tales scandalous of pernicious delight,
Betaken in the halls of power!
Heedless, needless, unprotected passion
A-lingering in blue twilight.
Kendall: Wipe thy chin, vile porno-pusher!
Thy copious drooling offends
Not just this august body of pricks and posers
But the long-suffering peasants without.
Hyde: Hold thy tongue, thou!
Tis mine own power seekest usurpation.
Pipsqueak Yaley, degreed and robed
You're just another damn lawyer like us all!
Kendall: Truth it be, much as it pains
Yet loyal am I to my friend of olde,
Not sucking at the tobacco teat
Like yon cigarette lawyer, in chamber's hot seat.
For Harvard men, like Rep. Hyde and me
Hold the majority! Wield the clout!
Kendall: Aye, there be plenty of twits and blue-haired biddies,
Numerous as nits, and heading committees.
Yet when in 2000 the bell does toll,
We shall see who calls the roll.
Hyde: Doggerel! Spew! My honorable name aspersed!
Where is my bastard son, to thrash thee, knave?
I am blasted flat upon my back!
(which is where I sired him, ere my heart attack)
Starr: Ahem, plough not that fertile field
Of extracurricular attention to detail,
And de breast, and de thigh, and de curvaceous calf...
And feet! Oh yes, de FEET!
Kendall: I reprise --
Wipe thy chin, salacious prevaricator!
Thy legions vex the wrong obsessive.
Prozac, lithium, and thorazine!
Should be thy imagining's suppressive!
Hyde: Oh? And what pot hast thou for today, our Mage?
Sick Symbiosis, or May the Best Species Win-- offered as the main reason he was fired, this pathetic paranoid plum was quite popular among his ex-co-workers, most of whom have since walked or been booted. When it gets to the gross part, you will be about 4% of the way through..."Gee boss, I really gotta hit the can." The Flipper squirmed in his seat in the black helicopter hovering silently over the office park. "I don't know what these guys put in their chile rellenos, but I ain't stopped going since we got here."Well, hey, some people eat Spam.
"Quiet, you pusillanimous fool. I am not making another pit stop for you; the psychological indicators say it's almost time," Dr. Ohmm NiScions barked. He extended a tentacle at the screen, where a sad scene was being repeated with depressing regularity. Thanks to alien technology, a time-lapse rendering of the HR manager's office showed yet another employee getting the old heave-ho.
"Look, they're leaving in droves!", he cackled. "Just one more round of scathing emails to the message boards and there'll be a tidal wave of resignations, and the company will go under. Then we can implement our Plan."
"But why them, Boss? It's a dinky little company, on a dinky little planet. It don't seem worth the effort." Flipper flickered shades of green and yellow as he groaned with acute discomfort.
Ohmm turned purple with rage. "You blithering, sack-faced, imbecilic twit! Don't you know that in our timeline, this 'dinky little company' will become the Microsoft of consumer electronics, embedded systems and semi-sentient autonomous devices? Their staggering technological advances will ultimately lead to the development of faster than light travel and star-killer weapons. If we don't stop them now, our race will be obliterated by these scratching, simpering apes when they discover our star system 50 years from now!
"Our plans almost went awry when our top agent was ousted from his post as CEO, but we've managed to replace most of Mahogany Row with our operatives. Fortunately, top management is so removed from personal contact with regular employees that nobody will notice if they're a little, uh, different...
Humming contentedly, he bent over his telepathic interface to compose a new series of emails. Behind him, Flipper grunted in agony, then released a satisfied sigh.
The weather in the 'copter got a lot riper.
Ohmm smiled with relish (if one could read alien facial expressions). He pointed at the mess on the floor and said, "That's OK, I'm ready for lunch anyway, you done with that?"
Kiwi Fruit -- Crocodile Bubba somehow made it to New Zealand, at least in spirit. A bit of a bludger, 'e was, strewth! Up and about before a sparrow's fart, and stirrin' em up at the bun-fight. What a dag!"So there I was, up the boohai shootin' pukeko's with a long-handled shovel, but still just a box of budgies, if you get me drift, when a boy-racer hard-case decides he's going to prang me with his gas guzzler in the car park. I'd been havin' a spot of bother with these young hoons and it's been a hard yakka to scrape the wallys off me wellies, in a manner of speakin', so I figure it's time to cark the dag but good.As Emeril might say, "BAM! Kicked it up so many notches its tonsils are wearin' Speedos!" Then again, maybe not.
"I'd already rarked up the stirrers, but that was yonks ago, and they wasn't bustin' a gut to remember. So I took a cackhanded poke at the barstid 'n' screeched, "Hell's Bells, naff off, ye bleedin' kiwifruit! Go back to the finger stalls and take yer shippie spinner with ye!"
"Right proud of that'un I was, strewth! But then I was in the loo, a great bloody superloo it was, shakin' the dew off the lily, and I hears this snarky voice behind me. I sussed right 'way it was the skiting little spork spewing a snotty sprog rhyme at me, the little puckerhead!
"So I chucked the chunder-head into the chilly bin and locked it in me caravan. I'm going walkies soon, and I'll be doin' a bit of wonky business at the A&P show. I've mixed in a bit of tasty cheese, and some red pepper, and made me up a real batch of bum-bangers, heh-heh.
"If the plods don't wise, I'll make a pound out the pickled piker yet!"
Jim Parnell squashes bugs for a living -- the ones that infest your computer. As a gesture of faith, he plans to be on full life-support in a commercial airliner booking flights and making e-trades at 23:59:59, December 31, 1999.
You can e-mail Jim Parnell at email@example.com
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