A Symphony unto Oneself

A Symphony unto Oneself

Chapter 6

     The Story The Authors
Injun Joe shook his head. It was useless, this shamanistic tradition of reviving the dead and getting them to speak -- these days any schoolboy knew it, used it to impress the girls, but the thing was, the dead spoke pure drivel. Nonsense only. He knew other brujos who'd revive the corpses of their fallen enemies and have a team of secretaries on hand to take dictation, which, that task once accomplished they'd fax the transcripts to the Psychoanalytical Linguistics faculties at Berkeley and Harvard, where they'd be pored over by the same teams of cipherists who'd cracked the Voynich manuscript.
But in the end -- nada. Never a damn thing worth hearing, never a clue as to what really lay beyond the veil.
Injun Joe spat in the former Officer Pencilthinmoustache's face and muttered a few harsh glottals in an unknown tongue; instantly the corpse went limp. He tossed it aside and returned to his inspection of the captive barmaids.
Valetroie had quickly discovered the truth in the old axiom for drawing a crowd of thirsty patrons in the Big Apple. "Post a bloody customer or buxom wench in view of passers by!" If anything, the absence of a sign out front seemed to have stimulated the steady influx off the street. All those thirsty cops, crime technicians from across the square. A crop of young waitresses from some joint down the street,some sort of scary lunatic raving in his cups in there, or so they reported. Phew! She mopped her brow! If those party animals dressed in that Indian get-up hadn't shown up and taken to filling in as waiters, she had been afraid she was going to have to unlimber an extra set of Dextroid arms or two just to keep up with the drink orders! "You guys are SUPER!",she yelled at the two behind the bar, they war-whooped back at her with big grins,kept the steady flow of cold brewskis going out over the little service flap. Where the crowd on roller blades had come from she had never determined. The impromptu band had long since jerked the plug on the jukebox. She couldn't quite see how they had managed to set up the drums,push the tables together, make a stage up where Caitlin and the Professor had been sitting. Caitlin! My God, how long had it been since she had noticed that pair up there? The smell of burning flesh from the cauterization had disturbed her at the time, that COULDN'T be good for business, she thought. Then Caitlin crouched atop the Professor or Count or whatever he was, weeping bitter ritual tears onto the wounds in the prostrate body she had dragged atop the table. The least she could have done was draw the cafe curtains! But the few stragglers entering had turned into a steady flow, and she had lost track, trying to set up their drinks. Could that really have been Caitlin, baring her breasts, tossing her head back to drink from an upturned bottle, wiping her lips with a forearm like a man? And what had those pelvic gyrations been about, they seemed to have driven the table into the wall with a crash? She had given Caitlin a professional withering look when that happened and although she hadn't slowed the pumping motion of her 501 clad hips, she shouted back over her shoulder something like, "REE-pant,pant,SUSS,pant,pant,A-TATION!" The swirling crowd had blocked Valtroie's view a final time, but she could swear she had heard Caitlin begin shrieking as she spoke that last term. "Re-suss-a-tation", Valtroie would have to remember to try to look that one up. Well, wherever those two had gotten themselves off to, her little break was over. Incredible grinning faces were still pressing in to tell her what a great little place she had. The cash register had filled with money 3 or 4 times, she had lost count. Beautiful people were catching her eye, hoisting their drinks and shouting "Happy New Year!", she had long since given up trying to discourage the people hugging her and kissing various parts of her body. She might be running on empty, but she had yielded herself completely to the crowd and its spirits. Grabbing a glass of champagne floating past, she quaffed deeply and shouted at the ceiling, "Happy New Years, New York! You're MY KIND OF TOWN!" The answering roar was deafening! Tom L.
It was at that moment that Dick Deltoid opened the door and gaped at the multitude. Dick was a field investigator for Gramercy National Bank and Trust. He had been dispatched by his supervisor, Viagra Flacid to check out the unusually high volume on Valtroieās credit card account which the bankās computer had flagged. They were always on the look out for scammers. Dick had the uncommon good looks of a Mormon missionary but in fact he was a lapsed Christian Scientist who was known to occasionally use Band-Aids. He was comfortable in crowded places and used to the smell of cheap booze and cheezies. After a couple of questions to the folks waiting for tables he was directed to Valtroie. "Christ!",he thought to himself, "She looks like Mary Baker Eddy with a body" Excuse me Iām Dick, Viagra Flacid sent me. Ignacious
...or so went the blinding visions sent by the ancestors that often interrupted Injun Joe's days."White man, heap big cesspool of decadence." thought Injun joe as he dispersed the visions with a grimace and a shake of the head. These things always gave him migraines that could kill a horse, but the hardened warrior just shook them off and returned to leering at his bound captives.
"Injun Joe need belly warmer" grunted towards the weeping barmaids, "Injun Joe like'em big tits" and the leer spread chesire cat wide across his battle scarred face. He ambled over to Lois, her ample endowments virtually spilling forth fro her torn waitress uniform. His lips smacked eagerly. "This one mine." he declared and around him his braves let out a united war whoop.Their leader's chioce having been made they could now divide the rest of the women between themselves. It would be a long night for all involved.
It would be a long night. But not all were involved, only all minus one. All except of course the politically correct and very repressed Injun John who secretly wished he were Injun Jane, on account of the day he ran into a fallen tree injurin' himself in the nether regions of which legends and babes were made. Injun John gasped and held his hand up to Injun Joe, saying, "Leave her the heap alone - no heaping or humping in my vicinity." Pol Correct
Meanwhile,back at the Velvet Rope in front of "The Badlands of South Dakota"... Tom L.
Just as Dick Deltoid was being let through the rope, and attempting to find the hand of Valetroie,to whom one of the Indian-costumed waiters was attempting to introduce him, a hubub from the sidewalk started scattering the back of the line like tenpins! A shrewish, gravelly, but plaintive voice was imploring and beseeching, "BAMBINO!", "BAMBINO!", as a hulking figure dressed in black veil and silk "widow's weeds" of late 19th. C. Neapolitan origin, aggressively rammed the ankles of the hapless crowd with a large old-fashioned black perambulator into which she was gesticulating with a free hand each time she said the word, "BAMBINO"! She stopped abruptly at the velvet rope, as two large frowning waiters stood between her and Valetroie and Dick Deltoid, who had turned to gape in amazement at the procession of the pram. With many a shout of "Hey! Watch it!", and "Ouch!" the waiting crowd had parted as the Red Sea had before the staff of Moses, only a bit faster! Had the distraught woman's veil been lifted, any of a number of the celebrating patrons in the place might have instantly recognized none other than the Bull-Dyke of Brooklyn herself! Seldom seen in such as yet probationary establishments she nevertheless had a fairly high recognition quotient in certain parts of town. Few would have, or could have, guessed however that the baby in the pram was none other than Jake Ticklestein, of Woodchuck, New Jersey. This was a baby, but a very strange one. One with a healthy stubble of beard, a cigar in his tiny mouth, upon which he puffed cooly, and a .45 calibre Thompson submachine gun cradeled in his tiny arms. Perhaps only the calm indifferent gaze,however, hinted that this was no ordinary machine gun toting, cigar smoking baby. This was a homicidal maniac! Dick Deltoid parted the two volunteer bouncers gently, and said, "Perhaps I can assist this poor woman? I speak a bit of Italian!" Tom L.
It had been a long time since Dick had taken that semester of Italian in college but he managed to ask the woman, with improper tense, badly conjugated verbs and the wrong gender, if she required any assistance. It was at this point that the woman tore off her disguise and revealed herself to be not a woman, not even the Bull-Dyke of Brooklyn, but the notorious Jake and the cigar smoking baby revealed himself to be the even more notorious Mr. Tickles. "Ha Ha!" they shouted in unison. Dick Deltoid fell back in terror and the crowd that had been waiting in line scattered like ants under a magnifying glass. "Now that Pencilthinmoustache is out of the picture, there is no one in the world who can stop us!" Jake laughed a maniacal laugh and Mr. Tickles fired his submachine gun into the air. cuddles
...Injun Joe always loved to watch these little tantrums among the ousted settlers with an impassive, twinkling eye -- the white man was so dramatic! No discipline, no purety of soul and purpose, no outlet for his fear. Instead, it festered in him and in his women and made them all stink with the sourness of the decaying. He let them go on for a few minutes, then nodded at his chief lieutenant, Squatted-In-Many-Pastures. "Cook em all three," he said, and the two shared a chuckle. "We gone eatum white man tonight!" So the whole tribe was laughing along with them, dancing in circles, shrieking, howling, beating the sacred war-drums. Their roars rose up over Trenton and the wax Badlands like a migration of ravens, darkening and almost blotting out what little remained of the thinning afternoon sunlight. Philip
Meanwhile... Tom L.
Deep in the rapturous depths of the silvery reflective virtual lake where he had first crouched in breathtaking wonder to revel in the rippling narcissitic grip of his own splendid reflection, Gurn lay moaning and writhing under the weight of the 4 and 1/2 tons of rose petals that had smashed him into semi-oblivion. Tom L.
Caught in the silicone depths of endless loops of repetition, his malignant limited capacity for fantasy was spinning out of control, generating endless myriads of 19th. Century hoakum, and male hoakum at that. The death of 10,000 Masks had been planned with the utmost care and now was being tapped by the Bull Dyke of Brooklyn for the enjoyment of her minions. Tom L.
But then Old Man Coyote came and just ate him up. That was how the old staory went, Old Man Coyote ate up Gurn and what he didn't eat up, he sold to Turtle, to Beaver, and to Rabbit. It was Injun Joe's favorite story; had been so since he was a boy. Philip
As Gurn spiralled deeper into the pond.... They returned from their floral traipsing weak with laughter at the many tiered spectacles on their banks of monitors. "Go Gurn, go!", they chanted, as they watched this latest repeat of their favorite show, "Injun Joe"! They fell all over themselves cackling at the sight of a virtual beeswax confection hovering 400 miles off the mark over southern New Jersey. Alas, Gurn's "feel good" California education had tripped him up in a thousand unknown ways, now Geography was stimulating their very nerve endings to the heights of orgiastic amusement. Indeed they had linked the Dallas Cowboy's cheerleading squad into one of the complicated hook-ups that was their specialty, just to cheer the latest side-bar on Injun Joe! Women squatting in Guatamalan villages were having some difficulty getting some of the imagistic overlays they were downloading, but still hugging each other in delight as the Cheerleaders mimed and mugged around behind Joe's savages bent on raping and pillaging. It was restoring some of their shattered faith in 'women helping women'. Whether they "understood" it or not, much healing was taking place. Several servers in the Northern Hemisphere were down temporarily due to the over-load of congratulations pouring into Brooklyn. When they captured poor Gurn, the ladies had caught a Big Fish indeed! Tom L.
Sadly, this explosion of peace, harmony and globally conscious empowerment was cut short by a titanic blast of Bad Vibes from Mr. Tickles' patented Evil Bad Vibes generator. A single touch of the blinking red button was enough to throw society back into the Dark Ages indefinitely. Pow!, then -- a black cloud circled the earth and made all human beings reexperience the deadly cloud of comet-dust which had caused the extinction of most of the dinosaurs. Mothers made love to their sons' girlfriends, sons copulated with their fathers' grandmothers, boy scouts rolled in an autocthonic frenzy with girl scouts across lawns festooned with crushed boxes of girl scout cookies, and the airwaves rang with the tinny vocal harmonies of Whitesnake. In his secret command post, Mr. Tickles whinnied, and through another unbaptised infant on the fire. Philip
Evil Nicole desended upon her enemies smiting them left and right none
all were afraid save one, Kimi the chosen one none
Sadly too was that in the midst of all of this wanton lusty frenzy Jake still could not manage to get laid. Stepping over copulating pairs of nannys and their elementary charges as he crossed the park, he could do little but sigh. In the dog run an obese record company executive in a dark Armani suit and sunglasses was chasing an Irish setter, his pants around his ankles. Kake's only consolation was that he really did like Whitesnake. ignavia
It was then that he spied the tall, wooly, deep black Standard Poodle standing all by its curly lonesome at the far corner of the dog run. His heart stuck in his throat -- his forehead burned -- he had to, he couldn't himself, he --

Back in front of the banks of monitors, Mr. Tickles was laughing to the point of incontinence, warm urine running down the insides of his stumpy little legs. It wasn't every day that a man got to stage an apocalypse of his own design...

Mr. Tickles had settled back in his ergonomically correct chair and wiped away the last of his tears of pure joy when he noticed something odd appearing on his monitors. Up there, in the top left corner he could see Janice, Jeremy, Joel, and Kristi. In the right hand corner he could see Vashondra Du Luncheonette with her best friend and sidekick Bitzy Bootleg riding in Vash's convertible mustang. On the monitor below that he could see Xerxes, Sophocles and Kate driving down the road in a suburu. There was Zsa Zsa Gabor! There was Dastardly Dan and Neenor! There was the ghost of Terrence and the angel Diane! There was Pencilthinmoustache! There was Gurn Blansten and Little Socco and on all the other monitors a myriad of brief walk-ons and cameos. "What the hell?" Mr. Tickles sat forward in his chair. "Why am I seeing all these dead characters from forgotten past storylines on my monitors?" Little beads of sweat broke out on the little man's out of proportion head. He knew that some day he would join the ranks of these tired out fictional beings but it couldn't be his time yet! Could it? cuddles
yup, sure could. none
It wouldn't even cost that much. I mean, all you have to do is sell a couple of pints of blood, and it's yours. Tamiko
The gods would always demand their pound of flesh and Mr Tickles wondered what he had done to draw their disfavor. He'd tried to keep things moving along dispite the constant interuptions of unruly minor characters, he'd attempted to be coherent and stay in character. And he wasn't done yet. There was still much to accomplish. He flipped Monitor One back to Injun Joe with an irritated flick of his wrist.
Back in the bar a brutally enforced orgy was going on. The women were wailing and the braves slipping and westling around in the blood leaking from the stacked corpses. At least something was going right.
Richard Gere, appearing in Tandem by special courtesy of Tri-Star Productions, had fallen completely to pieces in the character of "Dick Deltoid". Kissing Valetroie and both bouncers, he apologized profusely for not being able to stay in character. The sight of both the baby firing a machine gun at the ceiling and smoking a cigar, while the so-called Bull Dyke of Brooklyn was revealing her true character, had shattered his fragile hold on multiple illusions. Crying like a baby he had rushed out the back door of the "Badlands of South Dakota", jumped into his limo, and between sobs indicated to his bewildered driver he had to be taken at once to his private jet to seek another audience with his mentor, the Dalai Lama. [Mr. Gere's Wardrobe courtesy of Benedick of Beverly Hills. His hair styling courtesy of Lorena Bobbitt Creations. Any use or copying of any scenes featuring Mr. Gere prohibited by law.] Tom L.
...and with this sad turn of events, Monitor #17, second row down from the top and third from the left, blew a tube (must have been the gerbil, eh?), showering Mr. Tickles with a spray of sparks. "Dammit and tarnation upon this cursd technology!" swore the dwarf.
Meawhile, inside the pub, the curtain was raised and out stepped Injun Joe in a brilliant gold lamŽ tux and matching top hat. The band behind him struck up Cher's runaway hit "Halfbreed," for an overture, before launching into a song penned by Injun Joe himself.
Whitey gonum die [sang Injun Joe, cavorting lasciviously back and forth across the stage]
Gonum go'p to that Happy Huntem Ground in the Sky-yi-yi
Gonum wake up trampled under de buf-f-lo-o
Den we sendum on down to de land be-low

The barmaids went wild, shrieking and screaming at the lamŽ-clad figure leaving absolutely nothing to subtlety or the imagination as he gyrated his crotch against the mike stand up on the stage.

In dat endless ice and snow [continued Injun Joe, in a husky whisper, the band riding their instruments round the quieter edge of a subdued rhythm, waiting for the chorus to come round so they could really let loose]
Feedum to de Wen-de-go
Ain't no Win-neh-be-e-go
Can save-um from dis doom

And with that Injun Joe moved elegantly to the side of the stage as the spot light narrowed itās beam around his magnificent countenance, he gracefully exited to stage left. The crowd rose to its feet in a crescendo of adulation. The band went into a romantic up tempo version of "Over the Rainbow" , a lone spot cast an empty oval at centre stage. The crowd continued to express itās appreciation in wave after wave of roiling applause. There would be no encore tonight. Ignacious
The crowd began to realize that Injun was not going to return and they began to stomp their feet and shout angrily at the band who, being the troopers that they were, kept playing cheerful tunes. Someone, somewhere in the back of the assemblage threw an empty Corona bottle towards the stage where it smacked the side of the bass player's head, knocking him out cold. The crowd exploded into anarchy and rushed the stage. They smashed all the musicians instruments over the musicians heads and then the riot poured out into the streets. The peaceful townspeople pined for their lost Pencilthinmoustache. cuddles
"Cut to camera six!",screamed Mr Tickles in the control room. "And for fuck's sake get Pencilthinmoustache out there!"
There was a flurry of activity in the wings as the numerous assistants and their assistants scurried to do Mr Tickles bidding. Outside the uneasy rumblings of the massed audience built to a roar of indignation.
"Get him out there NOW!!
The crowd went wild with applause as soon as Pencilthinmoustache hit the stage. His arrow peppered corpse being strapped to a dolly wheeled out by a pair of bikini clad and buxom twins. The very foundations of the building shook with the thunder of the applause. In the control room even Mr Tickles managed to produce a glimmer of a smile. He hadn't seen a crowd reaction like this since he'd toured Gilligan's brain in a glass jar of formaldahyde back in '82.
"Ladies -- and -- Gentlemen," keened the anxious emcee --
Beginning with a series of clumsy, jerking steps not uncommensurate with the broken and (already, for it was the hottest day of July, and the flies were busy) stinking state of his body, the reanimated pride of Scotland Yard set forth upon the arduous journey of nine feet between himself and the mike stand. Blood bubbled from his mouth, from the hole in his throat, and from a wide variety of tears in his flesh from which the shafts of arrows or the jagged ends of broken bones protruded...
"The Trenton Scalping and Potlatch lounge extends a warm welcome to that esteemed son of the moors, the lift, the torch, and the clue --"
It was hard going, with two multiply-fractured legs, but he was English, he had that inbred British get-go all the way to the (now sorely depleted and ever depleting, sigh) marrow in his bones. "Offi-caaaaaaaaah --- " [and here a rousing drumroll]
He tripped once -- spraying the hushedly expectant front rows with a wash of blood and bits of flesh and adipose-tissue -- lurching forward and just managing to catch himself on the microphone stand, with -- unfortunately -- his broken (left) hand taking most of the force of impact. Bones ground together and he nearly blacked out from the pain. Where had he just been? Hadn't there been a bright white light at the end of a long, dark tunnel, and the sound of a deliriously Muzak'd version of Nena's "99 Luftballons" swelling around him like angelic choirs? Ah well; must have been a dream...
"Pencil! thin! moustache!"
The crowd howled, each hoping, in his or her heart of hearts, that there would be lions, and there would be Christians, and the twain would come to meet in a most dismembery manner --
He cleared his throat into the microphone, gave the crowd a steely nod, and began, the band warming up behind him, and began.
"Ladies and gents I'd like to begin with a sweet old air first taught me by me grand-pa-pa back in Bristol, when I was a lad and 'e'd dandle me on 'is knee. This one were origin'ly recorded by JosŽ Caramba an' 'is Old-Time Boys, an' it's entitled, for your pleasure, 'I Like Bananas, Because They 'ave No Bones.' An' a one, an' a two, an' a free, an' a four, and --!" Philip
Meanwhile,somewhere in the Bahamas... Pencilthinmoustache rolled langorously on the satin sheets, raised himself slightly onto one shoulder to take another toke on the excellent hash on the silver room service tray. Washed down with a swig of Mezcal followed by a sip diet R.C.Cola, he cleared his throat. The darned surf was drowning out the sound from the TV again. "HONEY-BUNNY???", he called out into the doorway of the outer suite of rooms, "BRING ME ANOTHER R.C., AND TURN UP THE SOUND ON THIS CHANNEL, WILL YA? LOOKS LIKE I'M ON THAT CELEBRITY RE-RUN SHOW AGAIN!" A very pregnant Caitlin came padding silently back into the bedchamber, still dripping from the morning swim she had just taken along the secluded beach! Pointing the clicker she turned the sound up. Taking the hash pipe, she hopped back into the bed to join her husband for another day of the All-Brooklyn Channel that had become their favorite source of news and entertainment. Tom L.
"What in God's name is wrong with these television programmers?" gasped Mr. Tickles, slapping himself on the forehead and noticeably hyperventilating. He crossed the banks of video monitors to where Tommy, his manservant, stood at attention. "What's the frequency, KENNETH?" he screamed, grasping the slight adolescent by his lapels and shaking vigorously. "Huh?!?" Smack."Haven't I told you to stay awake?" Slap. "What is your chronic malediction?" Smack. "Answer." Thwack. "Me."
The boy said nothing, so the frothing-at-the-mouth dwarf began to run round him in busy cirlces, rearranging the Tommy's fingers at the tips of the two rabbit-ear antennae which brought in the signals to his one hundred and forty video monitors. Someday, he sighed, we'll get cable here.
Meanwhile, the rabbit was not amused. In fact, he was growing more concerned by the minute. One day he was happily munching on clover; the next he was strapped to the top of a large black box (getting hotter by the minute) with a thick wire inserted in his nether region. Maybe, he thought, some of the Happy Plant got mixed in with the clover and this is just some sort of surreal hallucination. That's it. It's an hallucination. Soon I'll wake up in the field, on my back, and all of this will be just a bad memory. I'll have to remember to tell the rest of the rabbits about that damn clover patch. Jeffster
Or such were Mr Tickle's unfortunate assistant's thoughts as the raging dwarf thrashed him mercilessly with a copy of the Physician's Desk Reference he had always nearby.
Tommy often like to think of himself as a bunny. A happy lop-eared critter drowsily munching bits of lettuce in a wire cage, a little bottle of fresh water always handy. It helped him forget things. The needle nose pliers that Mr Tickles was applying to his left nipple, for instance. In Tommy's mind he was a carefree little rabbit frolicking in a sun dappled meadow searching out the choicest bits of juicy alfalfa to nibble to his heart's content far from the diabolical workings of show business.
On stage the reanimated broken corpse of the late Officer Pencilthinmoustache was just finishing the final chorus of "Shine on You Crazy Diamond" to earsplitting cheers and trying to appear casual as he shooed away the ravenous flies. It was becoming rather difficult however as rigor mortis set into those of his joints that he could still work. There was naught that he could do but finish and wait for the vamp that would lead him offstage and his eternal rest or so he hoped.
Camera 51. NOW!bellowed Mr Tickles turning back to the task at hand.Cue MC. It's time for the headliner.
"Whoa-ho! How's about THAT for a tough act to follow, folks?" shouted the emcee into the microphone, trying to make his voice heard above the boisterous din of screaming fans. "Well, if you thought that that was an act to die for, you're gonna love what's coming up next. That's right! It's the star of our show! The man you've heard so much about in the newspapers and on television! He was last seen doing his thing on Jerry Springer and will be headlining next week at the Jesse Helms Center for the Performing Arts! Put your hands together, open your lungs, and give a warm, rockin' welcome to Ronnie Rectum and his singing Enema!" Jeffster
It was a joke, of course, contractual stipulations forbid the Emcee from stating the performer's real name, but just about everyone there knew it anyway. It had hardly been a secret,after all. The vibes just hadn't been right and names are sacred keys to the yin/yang harmony of body and spirit. Screw up with the name of something and it's like fucked, you know, man. The contract also stipulated a plastic wading pool of lime jello, three bottles of Glenlivet, and a twenty gallon fish tank filled with only green M&M's.
The crowd laughed approvingly at the Emcee's humor and each moved a little further forward in their seats to get just that much closer to the stage. The orchestra vamped a bit with theintro to "It's Not Unusual", flashpots bursting behind them, while the laser light show made splendid psychedelic patterns on the ceiling. And then they hit the stage.
Literally. The wires that were supposed to gently lower them onto the stage in a glorious deus ex machina moment unexpectedly snapped. Bodies and instruments rained on the parquet floors as the audience screamed in glee, thinking it all part of the act. Bone and sinew, metal and wood, cracked and snapped as it slammed sickly to earth. "Close the curtains, dammit!" Yelled the promoter, "Close the curtains!" Behind the red crushed velvet, the crowd whooped and hollered for more. Meanwhile, the roadies and paramedics roamed the twisted alleys of flesh, slick with blood, searching to find signs of life amidst the rubble. Jeffster
The West Coast Pop Art Experimental Band! Back together! After all these years! Mr. Tickles felt tears of nostalgia welling in his eyes as lead singer Bob Markley frŸgged across the stage in mod-a-go-go boots, silken pantaloons and a fringed jacket of real leopardskin, hamming it up on the opening bars of "Suppose They Give a War and No One Comes?" while behind him, brothers Shaun and Danny Harris plunked and raved on, respectively, an electrified koto and a white Vox Phantom. Mr. Tickes couldn't restrain himself, the dwarf ran across the room and hugged Tommy, weeping into the immobile lad's chest (causing several channels to crackle out of reception) before delivering young Tommy a savage retaliatory blow to the solar plexus and racing as fast as his stubby little legs would carry him back to the monitors. It was too good to be true! The West Coast Pop Art Experimental Band! He hadn't seen them since the Whiskey, late '67, opening up for the Mothers of Invention. Gol-lee... Philip
Michael Lloyd, the unacknowleged member of the group stepped up to the mic, "You all expecting The Doors?" Two thousand massed voices yelled back "NO!" so loudly that bits of plaster rained down from the roof of the ampitheater. "Good 'cuz we aint them." And again the crowd roared. "This is a little ditty we wrote back in 1968 and it's called "Our Drummer Always Plays In the Nude" lanark
"Tommy you worthless piece of shit, get that slide show working! NOW!fumed Mr Tickles following the demand with an expertly flung PDR
Tommy worked his battered carcass off the floor to move over to the psychedelic slide show projector. He'd been happily reenacting his favorite scenes from Chris Farley movies in his head. Onstage the band was pulsing its way through an extended jam of "Help, I'm A Rock" always a showstopper. Mr Tickles was beside himself with joy.
"Oooooooooh," he squealed, beside himself, sporting a woody beneath his scratchy woolen Army pants as the band launched into 'Watch Your Step' complete with electric sitars and a bank of those honey-blonde nubile cage-dancers for which southern California is so rightly famoso. Philip
On the left side of the stage Bob Markley his face lined with the years smacked his tambourine randomly in front of his dead mic. It didn't matter. He'd just rented the band anyways, a way to pick up horny groupie chicks. He leered at the tasty creatures frigging and frugging and gyrating in the golden cages ten feet to his right, his mouth watering. It was all going according to plan. And the five hits of Sandoz Laboratory's finest Lysergic Diathylamide was just beginning to cause his pudgy belly little spasms. god, how he loved being a rock star. Lanark
Back at Control Central, Mr. Tickles, after a monumental snort of raw, uncut Di-Methyl-Triptamine, began to bounce off the walls in histrionic imitation of the Cocoa Puffs bird. Looking up, the hallucinating dwarf saw Injun Joe, sponging off in his dressing-room after a hot lard bath, beckoning him from within the confines of the screens of monitors #45 through #48. "Come, old friend," intoned the treacherous halfbreed. "Come with me. COme away from all this. Come to me and we shall fly away, straight into the Mystery."
An offer like that he couldn't refuse. The dwarf took one last peek at the concert, brained Tommy with a single stroke of a 23" diam. cast iron skillet, and stepped through the screen of Monitor #45 into the dressing room.
Knocked off balance by the force of the blow, Tommy sprawled forward into Monitor #113 currently showing a hidden cam shot of Carmen Electra's bathroom. Gene Simmons gave him a swirly. Lester
As he stepped into the cramped confines of the dressing room, through the tattered burlap meant to hide his shame from the world, he spied the silver space suit hanging on the hook by the mirror. "Hmm?" intoned the voice from behind the burlap. "Is it your size?" "It might be if I add the skillet in my pants," quipped the dwarf. And with a quickness untarnished by a giant's slothful ways, the dwarf zipped up the silver suit. The air hissed as the helmet sealed around the collar of the suit. Ryan Somerville
"Fire up the Vaseline oscillators!" boomed a familiar but not-quite identifiable voice over the P.A.
"Measure density of Readi-Whip in tank A --"
"Approaching terminal density at 0.88659."
" -- Tank B --"
"Mustard, ketchup, slaw?"
"The works."
"Then all abooooooard for Cupcaaaaaaake Islaaaaaaand!!!!"
A steam whistle split the air.
Meanwhile, back in the "Badlands of South Dakota"... Valetroie tucked the postcard from Caitlin into the bosom of her Oktoberfest dirndl and apron get-up. Although she had been able to decipher most of the ancient Dextroid script, and had gotten some indication Caitlin and Pencillthinmoustache had unearthed a stash of genuine Ousley acid in gallon jugs, it did not occur to her that the card itself might have been dipped in LSD. Ivar KrŸger, the new manager, and Harvard MBA, hired in Caitlin's prolonged absence, had, step-by-step, been taking the tavern away from its original concept. She knew he was right. But she couldn't help wishing that that urbane stranger had never stumbled in and changed things forever. As her pulse increased, and her bosom and face began to flush, she couldn't help but think what a long stange trip it had been! Jake's Place, around the corner, HAD been taking away a lot of traffic! Especially with their new gimmick of abducting New York police rookies and leaving them in the front window duct-taped to a chair until Tuesdays, when a topless Indian wench would cut off one ear with a straight razor, drinks 1/2 price until 7:00! She couldn't argue with Ivar's cold-blooded assessment that "In der long run, 'charm' vill get you no place in zis town!" Tom L.
Nonetheless it had been a shortlived promotion. The Indian wench was good for only two ears and then she had to be replaced. There were no volunteers and the supply of feckless police recruits had dried up when Dunkin Donuts opened six blocks away. Half price drinks were so common that she decided to go with full price drinks but with complementary cocktail weiners. The toothpicks with the colourful plastic tassels were extra. Even with this creative solution Ivar thought it, "Too charming by far!" Ignacious
With a sigh-she had to learn to trust SOMEONE-Valetroie signed the 48 page contract Ivar was holding out for her. $450,000.00 a week probably was CHEAP to get the Koncertgebouw Orchestra for their front window. She wasn't entirely sure that she was thinking straight any more, but if there was anything New York needed and wanted perhaps it was a little cultural uplift. Surely Hayden and Mozart hadn't gone completely out of fashion? She fished around in the dirndl for her Visa card. Was the plastic all melting, and the chromium too? Why was Ivar's leering grin of anticipation stretching into the spinning wheel of a unicycle with spokes made of teeth? Tom L.
Ivar drummed his fingers on the bartop. There had to be some way to restore the customer flow. And cocktail weiners just didn't cut the mustard. Humming a heretical Gregorian Chant sealed in the 6th century by Pope Pius II, a thought plowed into his head like a fully loaded dump truck skidding on a patch of ice: if there was nothing in this world that could save his business, perhaps there was something in another that could. Bursting with excitement, Ivar rushed around the bar, locking windows and doors, pulling down blinds, and disconnecting everything electrically operated. Taking a bottle of ketchup from off of one of the tables, he proceeded to paint a large pentagram in the center of the dance floor. Candles, he thought, I need candles. A half an hour of fruitless searching turned up matches, but nothing remotely resembling candles. Well, he thought, I might as well put these to some use. With that, he placed empty liqour bottles at each point of the star and plugged the top of each with the remaining cocktail franks. As he solenmly lit them, he found himself whistling the Oscar Mayer Weiner theme song. That being done, he stood in the center of the pentagram, and shouted, "Omecay ootay emay, owerspay foay arknessday! I, variay ommandcay ooyay!" As the last syllable echoed away into the darkness, the room began to fill with unholy smoke. The discordant notes of a thundering organ pounded the air, threatening to split Ivar's skull in two. The music swelled and Ivar grabbed his ears, screaming in agony, and dropped to his knees. Suddenly, it stopped. And from out of the smoke stepped a tall swarthy man, draped in a red velvet cloak. "Arise, foolish mortal! Arise and face Nahtan!" Ivar stood up, still trying to regain his hearing. "Oh great Satan--" he said, only to be cut off by the looming figure. "Not Satan, fool--Nahtan!" Ivar was confused. "Excuse me? I was expecting someone else." he said, sheepishly. The infernal being poked a foot at one of Ivar's be-weienered bottles and said smugly, "You want Satan, you use candles; you want Nahtan, hot dog vendor of Hell, you use frankfurters." Jeffster