Thursday, April 30, 2009

With a Little Blue Pill

In Pharmacology, all drugs have two names, a trade name and generic name. For example, the trade name of Tylenol also has a generic name of Acetaminophen. Aleve is also called Naproxen. Amoxil is also called Amoxicillin and Advil is also called Ibuprofen.

The FDA has been looking for a generic name for Viagra. After careful consideration by a team of government experts, it recently announced that it has settled on the generic name of Mycoxafloppin.

Also considered were Mycoxafailin, Mydixadrupin, Mydixarizin, Dixafix, and of course, Ibepokin.

Pfizer Corp announced today that Viagra will soon be available in liquid form, and will be marketed by Pepsi Cola as a power beverage suitable for use as a mixer. It will now be possible for a man to literally pour himself a stiff one. Obviously we can no longer call this a soft drink, and it gives new meaning to the names of 'cocktails', 'highballs' and just a good old-fashioned 'stiff drink'.

Pepsi will market the new concoction by the name of:


Viagra Worked -- Now Let's Try These...

With Viagra such a hit, Pfizer is bringing forth a whole line of drugs oriented towards improving the performance of men in today's society...

DIRECTRA -- a dose of this drug given to men before leaving on car trips caused 72 percent of them to stop and ask directions when they got lost, compared to a control group of 0.2 percent.

PROJECTRA -- Men given this experimental new drug were far more likely to actually finish a household repair project before starting a new one.

CHILDAGRA -- Men taking this drug reported a sudden, overwhelming urge to perform more child-care tasks -- especially cleaning up spills and "little" accidents.

COMPLIMENTRA -- In clinical trials, 82 percent of middle-aged men administered this drug noticed that their wives had a new hairstyle. Currently being tested to see if its effects extend to noticing new clothing.

BUYAGRA -- Married and otherwise attached men reported a sudden urge to buy their sweeties expensive jewelry and gifts after talking this drug for only two days. Still to be ascertained: Whether the drug can be continued for a period longer than your favorite store's return limit.

NEGA-VIAGRA -- Has the exact opposite effect of Viagra. Currently undergoing clinical trials on sitting U.S. presidents.

NEGA-SPORTAGRA -- This drug had the strange effect of making men want to turn off televised sports and actually converse with other family members.

FLATULAGRA -- This complex drug converts men's noxious intestinal gases back into food solids. Special bonus: Dosage can be doubled for long car rides.

FLYAGRA -- This drug has been showing great promise in treating men with O.F.D. (Open Fly Disorder). Especially useful for men on Viagra.

PRYAGRA -- About to fail its clinical trial, this drug gave men in the test group an irresistible urge to dig into the personal affairs of other people. Note: Apparent overdose turned three test subjects into "special prosecutors."

LIAGRA -- This drug causes men to be less than truthful when being asked about their sexual affairs. Will be available in Regular, Grand Jury and Presidential Strength versions.

Bread made with Viagra as an added ingredient is being marketed through a Boston bakery under the name, "Pepperidge Firm."

Viagra Extra Strength

A man walks into a drug store and says to the Pharmacist behind the counter,

'Listen, I have three girls coming over tonight. I've never had three girls at once and I need something to keep me horny... keep me potent.'

The chemist reaches under the counter, unlocks the bottom drawer and takes out a small cardboard box marked with the label Viagra Extra Strength and says, 'If you take this, you'll go mental for 12 hours.'

Very happy and excited, the man says, 'Gimme three boxes.'

The next day the man walks into the same drug store, right up to the same Pharmacist and pulls down his pants. The chemist looks in horror as he notices the man's cock is swollen, black and blue, and the skin is hanging off in some places.

The man says, 'Gimme a tube of Deep Heat.'

The Pharmacist replies, 'Deep Heat? You're not going to put Deep Heat on that are you?'

The man says, 'No, it's for my arms. The girls didn't show up.'

Just a Little Bit

An elderly gentleman went to the local drug store and asked the pharmacist for Viagra. The pharmacist said, "That's no problem. How many do you want?"

The man answered, "Just a few, maybe four, but cut each one into four pieces."

The pharmacist said, "That won't do you any good."

The elderly gentleman said, "That's all right. I don't need them for sex anymore, as I'm over 80 years old. I just want it to stick out far enough so I don't pee on my shoes."

A Waste

This man got his prescription for Viagra, and goes home to get ready for when his wife gets home. He calls her on the phone, and says, "I'll be home in an hour."

"Perfect," she replies. The man thinks her agreement is because the doctor told him to take his Viagra an hour before. He takes the Viagra and waits. Well, and hour goes by, the man is ready to go, but no wife?

She calls him on the phone and she says, "Traffic is terrible. I won't be there for about an hour and a half."

The man, frustrated, calls his doctor for advice. "What should I do?" he asks.

The doctor replied, "It would be a shame to waste it. Do you have a housekeeper around?"

"Yes," the man replied.

"Well, maybe you can occupy yourself with her instead?" said the doctor.

The man then replied with dismay, "But I don't need Viagra with the housekeeper."

Dear Diary - Part I

Day 1 - Just celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary with not much to celebrate. When it came time to re-enact our wedding night, HE locked himself in the bathroom and cried.

Day 2 - Today he says he has a big secret to tell me. He's impotent, he says, and he wants me to be the first to know. Why doesn't he tell me something I DON'T know! I mean, give me a break. He's been dysfunctional for so long, he even WALKS with a limp.

Day 3 - This marriage is in trouble. A woman has needs. Yesterday, I saw a picture of the Washington Monument and burst into tears.

Day 4 - A miracle has happened! There's a new drug on the market that will fix his her... "problem." It's called Viagra. I told him that if he takes Viagra, things will be just like they were on our wedding night. He said, "This time, I'd rather not have your mother join us." (I think this will work. I replaced his Prozac with the Viagra, hoping to lift something other than his mood.)

Day 7 - This Viagra thing has gone to his head. (No pun intended). Yesterday, at Burger King, the manager asked me if I'd like a Whopper. He thought they were talking about him. GET OVER YOURSELF! Not everything is about you!

Day 8 - I think he took too many over the weekend. Yesterday, instead of mowing the lawn, he was using his new friend as a weed whacker.

A lady walked into a pharmacy and asked the pharmacist, "Do you have Viagra?"
"Yes," he answered.
"Does it really work," she asked.
"Yes, it does," he replied.
She then inquired, "Can you get it over the counter?"
He replied, "I can if I take two!"

Dear Diary - Part II

Day 10 - Okay, I admit it. I'm hiding. I mean, a girl can only take so much. And to make matters worse, he's washing the Viagra down with Hard Cider! The photo of Janet Reno isn't working. What am I going to do?

Day 11 - The side effects are starting to get to him. Everything is turning blue. The other day, we were watching Kenneth Branaugh in Hamlet, and he thought it was The Smurfs Do Denmark.

Day 12 - I'm basically being drilled to death. It's like going out with Black and Decker.

Day 13 - I wish he was gay. I bought 400 Liza Minelli albums and I keep saying "fabulous" and still he keeps coming after me!

Day 14 - Now I know how Saddam Hussein's wife feels. Every time I shut my eyes, there's a sneak attack! It's like going to bed with a scud missile. Let's hope he's like President Bush and pulls out in 100 days.

Day 15 - I've done everything to turn him off. Nothing is working. I even started dressing like a nun. Now he tells me sister Wendy revs his motor.

Day 16 - I may just have to kill him. Then he'll go out the way he wants to: stiff. With my luck, I won't be able to close the casket.

Thanks, Doc!

A man comes to a doctor and, twitching his fingers and stuttering, finally manages to say, "Doctor, I have a sexual performance problem. Can you help me?"

"Oh, that's not a problem for us men anymore!" announces a proud physician. "They just came out with this new wonder drug, Viagra, that does the trick! You take some pills, and your problems are history." So the doctor gives the man a prescription and sends him on his merry way.

A couple of months later, the doctor runs into his patient on the street. "Doctor, Doctor!" exclaims the man excitedly. "I've got to thank you! This drug is a miracle! It's wonderful!"

"Well, I'm glad to hear that," says the pleased physician. "What does your wife think about it?"

"Wife?" asks the man. "I haven't been home yet."

Hey guys, you ever try one of those Viagraccinos down at Starbucks? - One cup and you're up all night!


Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Movie Titles: A Story

(I found a version of this while surfing a while back. It wasn't written very well and was filled with a lot of incomplete sentences. I liked the concept and stored it as a draft until some future date. Today is that future date, so I rewrote and edited it and added some more movie titles. I thought it came out pretty good. I hope you enjoy it.)

This is The Never Ending Story of a Working Girl who worked 9 To 5, and The American President. The latter of whom offered the former an Indecent Proposal. It seems this Top Gun was Addicted To Love, especially to Young Blood and Little Women. He had a Basic Instinct, a Fatal Attraction, for this Pretty Woman, this Babe. He liked to Kiss The Girls, sometimes slipping in the Rear Window. It was rumored that he sometimes liked Boys On The Side.... but that's Oliver's Story.

What of her? Was it just Casual Sex? No, she saw Career Opportunities. She was Looking For Mr. Goodbar. To her it was The Sure Thing. She had Great Expectations of getting him alone in the Oval Office which to him was a White Castle.

It was to be a Close Encounter Of The Third Kind and not a Mission Impossible. We're talking Risky Business and Dangerous Ground. Until now she'd played The Saint, but this would be Unforgiven, for she was going to break a few of The Ten Commandments.

It Happened One Night when they partook of An Affair To Remember. The Bodyguard, wearing The Mask of deception, would be the means of the Deliverance. It was in the Head Office that they played From Dusk Till Dawn. Calling it Patriot Games he said they'd do it on top of the flag.

She started with a Striptease, then Goin' South for The Fly. His pants Falling Down to his Sneakers, revealing The Pelican Briefs. There was no doubt that it looked like there would be some hanky panky and some Foul Play. She would Free Willy Two, and be surprised by The Thing. Being Up Close And Personal, she put her parted Jaws upon him. She'd never Eight Men Out before, but he didn't care, he was Blown Away.

Trading Places, he slipped his Goldfinger into her Paradise Alley. He could smell her Heat and taste her Primal Fear. Her Field Of Dreams began to Grease. Their Private Parts made Contact. It became Fast and Furious when he thrust his Shaft into The Abyss. She felt a Sudden Impact, and her Crimson Tide broke from the assault of his Great Balls Of Fire!

He expected her to be an Easy Rider, but she was a Twister and Rocky Two. She squirmed Every Which Way But Loose. He drove his Willy Wonka with Speed into The Deep. Their motions were Chitty, Chitty, Bang! Bang! He released Hot Shots of his White Squall into her Dark Passage. She felt The Wiz, then The Big Chill. She was Speechless, and Waiting To Exhale she let out a Scream. While he thought it was The Monster Ball, it was over in 8 Seconds. She thought, he wasn't much of a Superman. Then came The Long Kiss Good Night.

The Morning After, she was Dazed And Confused, and she told her Circle Of Friends what had occurred. She said she was told if there was ever a Q & A by Internal Affairs she would have to protect the President with Secrets & Lies and to deny ever Being There. All The Presidents' Men declared her to be a Liar, Liar. Unbeknown, one of these confidants was Wired. It was inevitable, there was going to be some Disclosure.

Time would pass; first there was 48 Hrs, and then Another 48 Hrs. Soon 9 1/2 Weeks would pass, followed by Another 9 1/2 Weeks. Then seeking Fame and Big Fortune, this confidant would hold The American President for Ransom. He wasn't Above Suspicion, he was Fair Game. She thought, " I'm Gonna Git You Sucka!". She told the press, "I Know What You Did Last Summer."

She Set It Off....a Chain Reaction which could Breakdown the Absolute Power of the President, Against All Odds. He'd be Better Off Dead and Fallen. Across the country Grumpy Old Men and Ordinary People will shout about a Conspiracy Theory. Some would flash The Birds. His Misery would cause Dead Presidents to rollover in their graves. When the tapes are aired, he was on The Boat sailing Out of Africa and is Coming To America.

However Suspect, the President was a Diehard. He addressed the people and stated, " This is Much Ado About Nothing. I need you to Stand By Me. Right wing advocates will Say Anything, and should Never Cry Wolf." The First Lady And The Tramp also showed Courage Under Fire. Admittedly Clueless, and without a Witness For The Prosecution, the Dragnet came to a halt. The American President was no longer Under Siege, and The Shadow over the Capitol was soon forgotten.

We wonder what has become of her. She never asked for Help! Someone said she was seeing The Mechanic. Sadly, her story is now being called The Crying Game. We're sure she's out there somewhere ... somewhere Where The Boys Are.


Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Love For Hire

Free Enterprise

A young man and his date were parked on a back road some distance from town. They were about to have sex when the girl stopped.

"I really should have mentioned this earlier, but I'm actually a hooker and I charge $20 for sex." The man reluctantly paid her, and they did their thing.

After a cigarette, the man just sat in the driver's seat looking out the window. "Why aren't we going anywhere?" asked the girl.

"Well, I should have mentioned this before, but I'm actually a taxi driver, and the fare back to town is $25..."



A Koala Bear and A Hooker

A koala bear and a hooker go back to her place and they get undressed. The koala bear goes down on the hooker for 3 hours straight. She has multiple orgasms!!! After 3 hours he stops, gets up and puts on his little koala clothes. The woman is hanging back huffing and puffing from exhaustion.

"Oh God,that was great! Now I need my money." The koala bear just looks at her and shrugs.

Then the hooker says, "No, I need my money. I'm a hooker and this is how I make a living."

The koala bear just looks at her and continues to put on his clothes. Then the hooker gets up and runs to the bookshelf, grabs a dictionary and thumbs through it to "hooker." She hands it to the koala bear and it reads:

"HOOKER: person who has sex for money."

Then the koala bear turns the page to "koala bear" and walks out the door. The hooker reads:

"KOALA BEAR: Eats Bushes and Leaves."

Angels of the Evening

Two prostitutes were riding around town with a sign on top of their car which said: "Two Prostitutes -- $50.00."

A policeman, seeing the sign, stopped them and told them they'd either have to remove the sign or go to jail. Just at that time, another car passed with a sign saying: "JESUS SAVES."

One of the girls asked the officer, "How come you don't stop them?!"

"Well, that's a little different," the officer smiled "Their sign pertains to religion." So the two ladies of the night frowned as they took their sign down and drove off.

The following day found the same police officer in the area when he noticed the two ladies driving around with a large sign on
their car again. Figuring he had an easy arrest, he began to catch up with them when he noticed the new sign which now read: "Two Fallen Angels Seeking Peter -- $50.00."

Granny For Hire

A young woman was a prostitute and, for obvious reasons,didn't want her grandmother to know. One day, the police raided a
brothel and arrested a group of prostitutes,
including the young woman.

The police had the all the prostitutes line up in a strai
ght line on the sidewalk, just as grandma was passing by. As soon as she noticed her granddaughter, she stopped
and asked her what she was lining up for.

Not wanting her grandmother to know the truth, the granddaughter told grandma that someone was passing out free oranges and sh
e was lining up for some.

"That sounds good. I think I'll have some too," Grandma said, as she made her way to the back of the line.

A policeman went down the line, questioning all the prostitutes, until he reached grandma. Looking very bewildered, he said to her, "You're so old, how do you
do it?"

"It's easy," replied Grandma. "I just remove my dentures and suck them dry!"

His First Time

A little boy hears the word whorehouse in school and asks his father what it means. His father is quite shocked, and replies: "Well, uh... you go there to... have a good time."

The boy starts screaming and hollering that he wants to go there too, but his father insists that he's too young.

Saturday night his dad and a few friends go to "Suzie's" to "have a good time", not knowing the little boy is following them. After his father leaves, the little boy enters the whorehouse and tells the madame that he wants to have a good time. She's a bit puzzled at first, but being a kind-hearted lady she gives him three doughnuts and tells him to leave.

Later that night he comes home, his parents all worried. His father approaches him first and asks him where he's been.

"IN A WHOREHOUSE!" he screams proudly.

"WHAT? Well... uh... how was it?"

"I managed the first two without any problem, but I just icked the last."

What a Way To Go

A guy is given 6 weeks to live, so he figures to live it up every minute. One hot night he goes to a whore house in Vegas, and because it is such a hot night, he asks the girl if she'd mind doing it outside on the roof where it's cooler.

She agrees and while they're going at it, the guy croaks and falls off the roof taking the girl with him. A passing drunk sees them fall and goes racing up to the door and starts banging on it.

The madam opens the door, takes one look at the drunk and says, "I'm sorry, I can't let you in, you're too drunk."

"Hell," says the drunk, "I didn't want to come in, I just wanted to tell you that your sign fell down."

The Growth

A guy goes out with his buddies for a night on the town and they go to a house of ill repute to round off the festivities.

A week later he visits his doctor complaining of a large green lump on the end of his penis. The doctor performs a thorough inspection and then pulls down a weighty medical book from the shelf and flicks through the pages, eventually finding a reference.

"I'm afraid this is quite serious and we have to operate!"

"Why, Doc, what's the problem?"

"Well you know how boxers can develop a cauliflower ear?"


"Well you've got a brothel sprout."

And The Moral of the Story...

A fellow passed a house with a little red light burning in front, so he stepped inside. There was nothing in sight, and nothing there but an empty bare hallway, with 2 doors reading "Over 35" and "Under 35."

He decided to be truthful and entered the door that said "Over 35." He found himself in another empty hallway, this one with 2 doors that read, "Over 8 inches" and "Under 8 inches."

Truthful again, he went through the "Under 8 inches" door and found himself in another empty hall, with 2 more doors reading, "Once a night" and "Over 4 times a night."

Still wanting to be truthful, he entered the door marked "Once a night" and found himself back out on the street.

The moral of this story is, "Always tell the truth and you'll never get screwed."


Monday, April 27, 2009

The Strange Story of Mr. Black and Ms Gray (44)

Part 44 of an original tale that delves into the unexplored realms of the human mind. Hired by her lover to find a raven haired beauty, Benjamin Bering must avoid the local police as well as the agents of a nonexistent government agency who are after him and the woman. There are just two problems. The woman is in a coma and her body has been stolen. (Part 1 can be found HERE.)

The Power of One

I felt a measure of trepidation as I passed through the door into a cavernous lobby. Apparently business must have been quite profitable for Check Mate Dating Services since I had visited the place several years earlier. No expense had been spared to transform what had been a small waiting room into an expansive galleria.

There were two receptionists seated behind a large counter, one engaged in an animated conversation on the phone while the other was busy typing on a computer keyboard. The latter looked up as I approached.

"Good evening, sir. Welcome to Check Mate Dating Services. How may I help you today?" Although her soft voice was pleasant, her greeting was mechanical, a memorized rote.

"Good evening," I replied. "I would like to sign up. I ...uh ... work a lot of hours. I don't get to meet many ... uh ... women."

"You've come to the right place, sir. We guarantee our matches here at Check Mate, or you receive your money back in full." Her fingers danced upon the keyboard to clear the previous screen and she asked, "What is your name, last name first please?" She typed in my response.

My elbow resting on the counter I allowed my eyes to navigate to her name tag, which had been conveniently, if not strategically, positioned next to a generous vista of cleavage. The provocative innuendo suggested by the name Mary Samples was not lost on me.

"Oh my!" she said looking up at me. "You are the second applicant today with an existing account." After a few key strokes she studied a new screen on the monitor and noted, "How curious ... the two of you were matched ... with each other ... eight years ago!"

"What?" I muttered in mild shock. "No. There must be some mistake. Yes, I did apply for your services eight years ago, but I never followed up on it. I changed my mind."

"It's here in our files, Mr. Bering," said the other receptionist who had accessed the same screen. "Perhaps the match was not a good one? Eight years is a long time. Could it be you let it slip from your memory as a bad experience?"

My mind was racing out of control. Had I really forgotten? I began to tremble when a possible explanation popped into my brain. What if that particular memory had been erased? I took a deep breath to gather my senses. Since I had not remembered being wired to both Michelle and Susan and participating in the experiments I'd seen on that disc, how could I possibly be assured that no other memories had been wiped clean?

"Hmmm, your account has been flagged," the first woman said. "Let me see if the other ... Yes, it too has been flagged." She tapped a few more keys and raised her eyebrows when the fresh screen appeared, "This is unusual, but both you and the young lady were given free life-time memberships by our Chairman back in the year 2000."

I realized that it was counterproductive to dispute their records, so I decided to play along, "I thought the free pass was for that one visit. I didn't realize it was forever. Mr. King's generosity knows no bounds."

"Mr King?" said Mary Samples. "Oh no, Mr. Julius Gates is our Chairman."

There seemingly were no limits to the surprises, twists and turns I thought. "General Gates?" I asked.

She seemed puzzled at my ignorance of the facts, but apparently decided to humor me. "Well yes, but he is retired."

"Ah, it has been quite a while since we've seen each other. Perhaps while I'm here I can say 'hello' to him if he's not too busy."

She shook her head, "I'm afraid that would be impossible. He has an off-site meeting today and won't be in until next week."

Gates must have entered the rear of the building undetected by the pair of receptionists. Chances were that he probably by-passed the security measures too. "That's too bad. I'll have to give him a call," I replied. I realized that it was time I changed the subject back to the reason I was there in the first place. I flashed a big grin, "Where were we anyway? Ah. Since I'm already on file, am I ready to be matched up with a date?"

The second receptionist stood up and announced, "Almost. You still have to go through our screening process in order for us to build your profile." She moved around the counter and stood next to me. She motioned with her hand, "Mr. Bering, if you'll follow me please, I'll show you to Screening Room Two."

We passed through a door into the corridor that had been indicated on the floor plans we'd reviewed earlier at Rosie's cottage. I stopped in front of the door labeled Screening Room One and peered through the glass window. Susan appeared to be asleep inclined in a chair resembling that of a dentist. I could see several wires attached to her head. I asked of my escort, "Is that the young lady I was matched up with the last time?"

She nodded, raised a finger to her lips and then whispered, "Yes. Our bosses will find it a curious coincidence that the two of you would show up on the very same day. When I'm alone at the desk, I'll have to change the date on one of your accounts."

My eyes narrowed and I turned to face her, "Why would you do that?"

She glanced around and whispered, "We have to be careful. Around here we never know who's watching our every move and listening to our every word. There are others here who have been assigned to help you shut this place down and to put to an end the horrible things they are doing."

I scratched my head and said, "Gates didn't tell us there would be inside help."

A horrified state was visible in her wide eyes, "Gates? No, it's Gates we need to stop!"

My head began to pound and spin out of control. Just when I thought I knew all I needed to know, a receptionist had thrown a monkey wrench into the works. Could I, should I trust her? Who was I to believe? What was I to believe?

I placed my hands on her shoulders and declared, "Not even an hour ago Gates walked us through an elaborate plan to shut this place down. In fact, he arrived before us to tap into the main frame."

She gasped, "Gates is here?" She moved suddenly against me and whispered, "Listen, there are hidden security cameras all over the place and he might be watching us right now. Please do as I say without question and don't hesitate." She began rubbing against me in a seductive manner. "Part of our job description calls for us to be especially friendly with our prospective male clients. Please, act like you want to have sex with me. Grab my ass, and fondle my boobs, and kiss me."

Under the circumstances I had no recourse but to comply with her wishes. Although the staged act was uncomfortable, the fact that she was attractive and quite shapely made it a lot easier. Our lips touching, she pressed her hand hard against my hand which was cupping her left breast. She sighed, "Whew, your acting is good. Okay, unbutton my blouse and reach inside my bra where your hand is now. Inside there is a folded piece of paper beside my nipple. Take it, but keep it hidden when you remove your hand."

My fingers probed beneath the fabric of her bra. When I came in contact with the nipple she placed her hand over mine and began to move her chest. Her head tilted back and she gasped. I said, "Damn. Your acting is great!"

With her free hand she yanked on the top of her bra until it slipped down exposing her whole breast. The folded paper slid down the slope of her flesh and I clamped it between two fingers. She looked at me through glassy eyes and said, "Who says I'm acting?" She brushed her lips against my ear and cooed, "Much more of this and I'm going to drag you onto the floor and screw you like there's no tomorrow."

I backed up a little and responded, "Much more of that and I'll let you!"

She repositioned her bra and re-buttoned her blouse. She winked and deliberately raised her voice, "Lover, if you want, we can always get together after your screening." She then reached down and gently fondled my groin.

I realized that she wanted us to be heard. I spoke accordingly, "Honey, you can count on it!" Following the lead she had established, I gave her a playful slap on the backside.

She then led me to the door of the screening room and once again dropped into the whispering mode, "Read the note when you're inside. When Dave the intern comes in he's going to ask you if you've read any interesting poetry lately. I think you are familiar with the works of Tommy Tsunami."

She turned and walked a few steps away and in a normal voice said, "The intern will attend to you shortly, Mr. Bering. Good luck in finding the perfect mate." She then continued down the corridor in the direction of the door to the lobby.

I sat down on the edge of the chair and lapsed into deep thought. As if I hadn't had enough to cloud my mind, I certainly hadn't needed the sexual tension that had occurred in the corridor with that receptionist. Had her sexual interplay really been necessary? That they may have been heard and observed by means of the security system was not out of the realms of possibility.

The general's convictions and his intricate plans had convinced me that King was the enemy that he had to be stopped. If I took the word of the receptionist, then it was Gates who was the real threat.

Then her words to me at the screening room door came to the forefront of my chaotic thoughts. She had mentioned Tommy Tsunami and his poem. That poem had been left in my mailbox before my apartment had been leveled by the bomb. Since the receptionist had placed this 'Tommy Tsunami' there at the Check Mate facilities, her actions had begun to gather credence.

I opened my hand to reveal the note that had come from her bosom. It was a full sheet of legal paper that been folded into its smallest possible size. Unfolding it, I began to scan what appeared to be a speech of some kind. The top of the page bore the title, "The Power of One." My pulse quickened and I felt a curdling within the pit of my stomach as the essence of the speech began to register.

The two words exploded from my lips, "Holy shit!"

(To be continued in Part 45, on Friday 5/1, with Only the Dead Shall Bleed.)


Saturday, April 25, 2009

Crisis in the Waistland

Phonetically, the title of this post would suggest an adventure story about the Old West. However, there will be no depictions of cowboys and Indians.

I suppose I could have just as easily used "Battle of the Bulge" to rest in the title banner above, but that wouldn't be at all original.

Yep, you guessed it. I'm talking about girth control here.

Honey, what are you doing to the laundry? My pants shrunk!

I had been leaving the top button of some of my pants pants unsnapped, but that was hidden by my belt buckle. In the cooler weather I was wearing sweaters and sweater vests. During last summer I was wearing my shirts with the tails out.

Praise be to the inventor of those plastic button expanders!

Of course they shrunk!

I noticed recently that the front porch seemed to have settled a bit on the foundation. If that wasn't enough, I was having difficulty viewing the downstairs plumbing. Only by leaning slightly forward could I see the hose bib.

Honey, are you still cooking with trans fat?

It's kind of 'snuck' up on me ... kind of ...? Well, not really. I might as well be honest if only to myself. The indicators had been there, and while I was aware of them, I didn't give them much thought (or was reticent to admit it).

Reality reared its ugly head three weeks ago when my wife come in from shopping with a new pair of jeans for me. Not that I'm ungrateful or anything, but I was quick to note that she bought pants with a 36-inch waist when I wear 34s.

They must have the wrong size tag!

I couldn't believe it! I couldn't catch the top button! I had to employ the above mentioned and pictured button expander. They were tight.

Then two weeks ago she presented me with another pair of jeans - sized 38! It should come as no surprise that I said that they would be too big! Duh! They fit! They were a little loose, but they fit!

I have no intentions of looking like a basketball with arms and legs! So I've decided it's time to assess the situation.

My wife never wanted a bathroom scale in the house. As a result I hadn't weighed myself in a long time. I did know that last September I weighed 165 pounds! For a 60-year-old man standing at 5'10" that isn't too bad! Is it?

Is this scale accurate?

So the next day after she bought the '38s', I stepped on a scale at the home of one my clients. 191 pounds? The client confirmed the scale was indeed accurate.

Nine days later, this past Thursday, perched upon the scales of another client, I watched the numbers spin like the dials on a one-armed bandit. They came to rest on 196!

Some quick math reveals that I have gained 31 pounds since last September! In seven months, that figures that I have been packing on the poundage at the rate of a little more than 4 pounds a month.

Perhaps,Crisis in the Waistband is a more appropriate title for this post?

I'm not used to gaining weight. I don't know if that is an alarming rate or not.

But I had an alarming discovery this afternoon when I tackled my dresser drawers. I stripped naked from the waist down - hey, even my underwear is a layer! I looked at it this way, if I couldn't get into any of those pants sans the drawers, I wasn't going to get into them with them on either!

Jeans, dress and casual pants after pants came out the dresser drawer and jeans, dress and casuals went into a "no-way-no-how" pile. The "NWNH" pile was by far the largest with 15 strong. The "tight" pile had three pairs. The "button expander" pile had four pairs.

I spent all of my youth as a skinny beanpole. When I graduated from high school in 1966, I weighed 140 pounds soaking wet!

When I was discharged from the service in December of '71 and got married in May of '72, I tipped the scales at 150. From 1972 to last September - 37 years - I gained a whopping 15 pounds! In the last seven months I picked up 31!

Honey, where did you hide the potato chips?

There's no getting around it, I've become a sedentary individual - or more precisely I've become both a sedentary couch potato and a sedentary blogger.

I suppose the large bags of Utz potato chips I've become addicted to may have something to do with my bodily inflation. Perhaps maybe even the Reese's Fast Break candy bars ... the Cheetos ... the Klondike Neapolitan ice cream bars ... the Wendys Double Classic cheeseburgers ...

It couldn't possibly be the lack of exercise ...!


Friday, April 24, 2009

The Strange Story of Mr. Black and Ms Gray (43)

Part 43 of an original tale that delves into the unexplored realms of the human mind. Hired by her lover to find a raven haired beauty, Benjamin Bering must avoid the local police as well as the agents of a nonexistent government agency who are after him and the woman. There are just two problems. The woman is in a coma and her body has been stolen. (Part 1 can be found HERE.)

Mr. Black's Gambit

Stu behind the wheel, Susan and I in the backseat; we were quiet with our own thoughts as we set out on our mission. I caught site of Rosie's cottage as it disappeared behind a stand of large conifers and couldn't help but wonder if we were leaving behind a safe sanctuary. On the other hand, our destination at the offices of Check Mate Dating Services, promised not to be so friendly.

The voice of the broadcast reporter emanating from the radio caught my attention. On cue, Stu raised the volume.
"... Security is extremely tight as Boston's Government Center is being prepared for the President's address to a convention of the nation's top scientific minds. When President Baker takes the podium at approximately eight o'clock pm, it is expected that he will announce that the sanctions levied against stem cell research last March will not be lifted, but rather will be modified ..."
"Since we are otherwise occupied, who's covering the President's speech, Stu?"

"I gave the assignment to Martin and Wynn," he replied. "You know, I'd almost forgotten about the President being in town."

"I'll do you one better. I didn't even know he was going to be in Boston!"

"Funny how insignificant a President can be," Susan said, "when we're concerned with a man who would be King."

"Stu, while on the subject of our owner and Chairman of the Board, you've had more dealings with him than I. Just what do you know about him anyway?" I asked.

"Our Mr. King is an enigmatic person to say the least. The man's background is sketchy at best," replied Stu.

"How so?"

"Well, it's just that he seemed to burst on the scene - like he appeared out of nowhere."

"But Stu, it was well documented that he was going to take over his father's interests when the latter grew ill. I remember reading in the archives that there was a huge media feeding frenzy over in England when he gave the eulogy at his father's funeral."

"That's true, Ben. I might have been only a beat reporter when that funeral took place shortly after our pullout from Vietnam, but I was most curious about the heir to the King fortune. I wondered why the son had never received any public attention prior to the passing of his father."

"I would guess that the father must have kept his private life out of the public eye, probably to protect his family. It's not necessarily unusual for the rich and famous to do just that."

"No, it's not," Stu agreed. "Having said that, wouldn't you agree that it's usually a big story when they have children?"

"Of course! In England, if one of the Royals has a hangnail, it's front page news."

"That brings me to my point, Ben. There was no news coverage of the birth of King's son. The son is not once mentioned until the imminent death of his father. They were never seen or photographed together. In fact, he had never appeared in public until he himself announced the death of his father."

"There has to be records - a birth certificate, school enrollments - somewhere," I stated.

"I'm telling you, Ben, there is no record of old man King ever having had a son."

I was still mulling over Stu's extemporaneous biography of the King family when we pulled onto the parking lot of the sprawling complex that was Check Mate Dating Services, Inc. Surrounded by winter dormant shrubs, and replete with images of chess pieces, the large sign bearing the business' name hearkened back to Michelle's cryptic notes. Stu pointed toward the back of the building, indicating that the lone vehicle parked there was the general's.

Although we had briefly bickered over the matter, I gave in to Susan's adamant insistence that she enter the building first. With nervous difficulty I swallowed hard the lump that had formed in my throat as I watched her cross the lot to the main entrance.

"Aren't you concerned at all about that phone call from Rosie and Brock?" Stu asked. "What if it is a trap?"

I narrowed my eyes and faced my long-time boss and friend, "That it's a trap - of that I have no doubt." Stu's mouth opened to protest but no words came forth as I raised a hand and pointed at Check Mate's prominent sign. "You see, we were being set up ... right from the get go. The e-mail I received, the story being brought to press only to be shut down ... they were simply part of an opening move, a gambit to draw all the players out into the open."

"Over the years the years I've come to trust your hunches,Ben. Hell, if your hunches had been horses I could've made a fortune at Suffolk Downs," he said taking a deep breath. "Inasmuch, I'm inclined to assume the analogy to a game of chess is more than just a hunch."

I nodded in response to Stu's assumption, "Even now, I feel we are being manipulated like pawns. It's not a friendly game the two Masters are playing either."

He began rubbing his chin trying to follow my logic, "Two Masters? They no doubt would be King and General Gates?" However, the look on my face suggested I was on a different train of thought. "No?"

"Initially, I too thought it was those two. It would make sense that King would want his research to benefit mankind, and on the other hand a general would desire the possible military applications. Now, I'm not so sure."

"Ah yes, the Feds! They have to figure in the equation as well."

"I suspect there is some greedy Senator or perhaps a group of them dangling a carrot from a stick, and keeping it just out of reach of King and the general," I asserted.

"The implications of King's research, as well as that of Michelle and Michael, is mind boggling, Ben. Can you imagine the FBI and the CIA not being interested in mind control and mind reading?"

I spread my arms with open hands and said, "The sky's the limit, Stu. What if that kind of power was available on the corporate level? Suppose criminal minds, or worse, terrorists could get their hands on that research."

"You're scaring the hell out of me, Ben! That's too much power for any one faction to control, let alone an entrepreneur with a shady background or a military lifer."

I glanced at my watch and declared, "It's just about time for me to fill out my application." I began walking toward the main building and over my shoulder I said, "You know, there is another player."

Puzzled, he asked, "Another player? Who would that be?"

"Come on, Stu. He hasn't been in the picture and yet, he's been all too prominent."

He was shaking his head, "You've lost me, Ben."

My reply left him stunned. "Michael Black!"

(To be continued in part 44 on Monday 4/27, with The Power of One.)


Thursday, April 23, 2009

Word of Mouth

Today's theme, you might say hits below the belt with a mouthful of laughs.

A woman goes shoe-shopping one day. As the salesman is helping her try on shoes he notices she is not wearing panties. He looks at the woman and says, “Man, I’d love to fill that with ice cream and eat it!”

The woman slaps the man and runs home to tell her husband. The husband acts disinterested and his wife gets angry and asks, “Aren’t you going to do anything!?”

The husband replies, “First of all, you have too many shoes as it is.Second, you shouldn’t be out shopping without panties. And third of all, I’m not going to mess with anyone who can eat that much ice cream!”
- (Lifted from Miss Cellania.)

A Girl's First Time

As you lie back your muscles tighten. You put him off for a while searching for an excuse, but he refuses to be swayed as he approaches you.

He asks if you're afraid and you shake your head bravely. He has had more experience, but it's the first time his finger has found the right place.

He probes deeply and you shiver; your body tenses; but he's gentle like he promised he'd be.

He looks deeply within your eyes and tells you to trust him-he's done this many times before.

His cool smile relaxes you and you open wider to give him more room for an easy entrance. You begin to plead and beg him to hurry, but he slowly takes his time, wanting to cause you as little pain as possible. As he presses closer, going deeper, you feel the tissue give way; pain surges throughout your body and you feel the slight trickle of blood as he continues. He looks at you concerned and asks you if it's too painful. Your eyes are filled with tears but you shake your head and nod for him to go on. He begins going in and out with skill but you are now too numb to feel him within you.

After a few moments, you feel something bursting within you and he pulls it out of you, you lay panting, glad to have it over. He looks at you and smiling warmly, tells you, with a chuckle; that you have been his most stubborn yet most rewarding experience.

You smile and thank your dentist. After all, it was your first time to have a tooth pulled.

Naughty, Naughty!

What were you thinkin'?

The Vodka Bottle

A Russian is strolling down the street in Moscow and kicks a bottle laying in the street. Suddenly out of the bottle comes a Genie. The Russian is stunned and the Genie says, "Hello master, I will grant you one wish, anything you want."

The Russian begins thinking, "Well, I really like drinking vodka." Finally the Russian says, "I wish to drink vodka whenever I want,so make me piss vodka."

The Genie grants him his wish. When the Russian gets home he gets a glass out of the cupboard and pisses in it. He looks in the glass and it's clear. Looks like vodka. Then he smells the liquid. Smells like vodka. So he takes a taste and it is the best vodka he has ever tasted.

The Russian yells to his wife, "Natasha, Natasha, come quickly!" She comes running down the hall and the Russian takes another glass out of the cupboard and pisses into it. He tells her to drink, it is vodka. Natasha is reluctant but goes ahead and takes a sip. It is the best vodka she has ever tasted. The two drink and party all night.The next night the Russian comes home from work and tells his wife to get two glasses out of the cupboard. He proceeds to piss in the two glasses. The result is the same, the vodka is excellent and the couple drink until the sun comes up.

Finally Friday night comes and the Russian comes home and tells his wife, "Natasha grab one glass from the cupboard and we will drink vodka."His wife gets the glass from the cupboard and sets it on the table.

The Russian begins to piss in the glass and when he fills it his wife asks him, "But Boris, why do we need only one glass?" Boris raises the glass and says, "Because tonight, my love, you drink from the bottle."

Three Daughters

There were three daughters and they all wanted to get married but they couldn't afford it and neither could there parents. So the parents said "We will give you all a joint wedding and then you will all be able to get married".

So they got married and all three daughters then said "I want a honeymoon but we cant afford it". The parents couldn't afford it either so they deiced they would have the honeymoon at their parents house.

So on there honeymoon night their mother woke up and deiced to go downstairs and get a drink. On the way down she heard the first daughter screaming but she juts ignored it. When she reached the second daughters bedroom she could hear laughing and just ignored it. When she reached the third daughters room she could hear nothing and deiced 2 ignore it.

The next morning at the breakfast table she said to the first daughter "Why were you screaming?". And the daughter replied "Well mother you told me 2 scream when something hurt."

Then the mother said to the second daughter "Why were you laughing last night?" and the daughter replied "Mother you told me to laugh when something tickled".

Then the mother said to the last daughter "Why didn't I hear anything coming from your room last night?" and the daughter replied "Well mother you told me never to talk with my mouth full".

Where Babies Come From

One afternoon a little girl excitedly approached her mother, and announced that she had learned where babies come from at school that day. Amused, her mother replied, "Really, sweetie? Why don't you tell me all about it?"

The little girl explained, "Well... OK... the mommy and daddy take off all of their clothes, and the daddy's thing sort of stands up, and the mommy puts it in her mouth, and then it sort of explodes, and that's where babies come from."

Her mom shook her head, leaned over to meet her eye to eye, and said, "Oh, honey, that's sweet, but that's not where babies come from. That's where jewelry comes from."


Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Euphonious Nomenclature

Politically Correctness- a socially communicated disease espoused by socially inept individuals which is characterized by the deprivation of the rights of others.
(Ironically, the phrase "politically correct" in and of itself is politically incorrect and therefore an oxymoron, as there is nothing correct in politics.)
As it has been left unchecked, the practice of politically correctness has run so amok that it has become necessary to consider that our dictionaries should be rewritten. Fortunately it has not yet come to that, as some PC persons have released their own dictionary:
The Official Politically Correct Dictionary and Handbook
I have chosen not to mention the publisher or name the collaborating authors as it might spawn interest in the publication and therefore inadvertently generate increased sales of it.

I did bend to PC pressure with the naming of this post, but only to draw attention to the absurdity of the subject matter.
Euphonious - nice, pleasant sounding.
Nomenclature - the act of assigning names; the name assigned to.
I'll attempt to illustrate the comparison/differences between normal word usage (henceforth referred to as "correct") and politically correct word usage.
Let's say that you have just been introduced to a friend's little girl: "This is my daughter, Linda."

Your response:
Correct: "What a nice name."
Politically Correct: "That's a euphonious nomenclature."
Ah, the yard sale, that traditional social rite of spring. It's the weekend practice where bargain hunters find and purchase desired objects at deep discounted prices, well below those of retail stores.

It's an amicable trade off as the seller gets rid of unwanted stuff in order to make room for new stuff, the cost of which is defrayed by the sale of the former.

In this age of politically correctness, can you imagine while driving around looking for yard sales you come across this sign on a tree or a telephone pole:
Migratory Relocation of Possessions
Where, oh where will it end? Years ago there was talk of the United States converting to the Metric System to bring it line with the rest of the world. If I thought I was afraid then of the prospect of that change, I'm now living in dread of the "raping and pillaging" of our language and its words usage.

I was perplexed to learn that paper bags and newspapers are now
"Processed Tree Carcasses."

"Stolen Nonhuman Animal Products" is what I'm supposed to call eggs and dairy products now.

If I were to buy a whole chicken or turkey, I would have to ask the butcher for
a "Voiceless Victim of Speciesism."

If I wanted to apologize for the spat I had with my significant other, I wouldn't buy flowers, but a bunch of "Botanical Companions."

Need some cologne or perfume? You won't find it unless you look for
"Discretionary Fragrances."
To differentiate, "Nondiscretionary Fragrances" would refer to body odor, bad breath, and breaking wind.
Do you know anyone having a baby? Well she's not pregnant, she's "Parisitically Oppressed."

"Commodity Allotments Within a Business Doctrine" is a term for prostitutes.

I guess that "Consensual Nonmonogamy" sounds better than wife swapping.

When a criminal is locked up away from the general populace of a prison, it's no longer solitary confinement, but "Therapeutic Segregation."

I might be guilty of "Street Harassment," but I see no harm in girl watching.

This one I like! It might be "Bureaucratically Suitable,"but it's still BS that politicians sling when they speak.


Tuesday, April 21, 2009


Graphic courtesy of Jeff Bucchino,
The Wizard of Draws

Golfer - n., - a person who yells "fore," takes six and puts down five.

It's Called Golf...

The man who takes up golf to get his mind off his work soon takes up work to get his mind off golf.

Golf was once a rich man's sport, but now it has millions of poor players!

Golf is an expensive way of playing marbles.

The secret of good golf is to hit the ball hard, straight and not too often.

There are three ways to improve your golf game: take lessons, practice constantly ... or start cheating.

An amateur golfer is one who addresses the ball twice ... once before swinging, and once again, after swinging.

Many a golfer prefers a golf cart to a caddy because it cannot count, criticize or laugh.

Golf is a game in which the slowest people in the world are those in front of you, and the fastest are those behind.

There's no game like golf: you go out with three friends, play eighteen holes, and return with three enemies.

Golf got its name because all of the other four letter words were taken.

The Holy Foursome

Jesus, St. Peter, St. Matthew & St. Luke went out one day for a round of golf.

They began play, and everything was fine util they reached the par 3 5th hole. This particular hole had a large water hazard in front of it, and since he had the honor,St. Peter teed off first. He took out his trusty 5 iron, and laid the ball on the green,no problem.

St. luke went next, and he used his 7 iron. St. Matthew followed, using a 5 iron. Both were on the green in one and ready to go. Jesus teed up, but he took out his 9 iron saying, "I saw Arnold Palmer make this shot with his 9 iron once!"

Well, he hit the ball just fine, but short. Into the water it went. "No problem", says Jesus, and he tees up again. Same shot, same result. After 2 or 3 more attempts, St. Peter says "Why don't you just use your 5 iron and get it over with?"

Jesus again replies "I saw Arnold Palmer make this shot with his 9 iron once!"

Well, this continued over and over until Jesus was out of balls. Disgusted by now, Jesus walks out on the water and reaches in and retrieves his errant shots. About this time the foursome following our group has caught up. Looking out at Jesus on the water, one of them asks: "Who does that guy think he is, Jesus Christ?"

To which St. Peter replies...."Nah, he thinks he's Arnold Palmer!"

With Appologies to Joyce Kilmer

I think that I shall never see
a hazard rougher than an tree;
A tree o'er which my ball must fly
if on the green it is to lie;
A tree which stands that green to guard,
and makes the shot extremely hard;
A tree whose leafy arms extend
to kill the six iron shot I send;
A tree that stands in silence there,
while angry golfers rave and swear.
Irons were made for fools like me
who cannot ever miss a tree.

Some new lingo to use when you're out on the course...

A 'Rock Hudson' - a putt that looked straight, but wasn't
A 'Saddam Hussein' - from one bunker into another
A 'Yasser Arafat' - butt ugly and in the sand
A 'John Kennedy Jr.' - didn't quite make it over the water
A 'Rodney King' - over-clubbed
An 'OJ.'- got away with one
A 'Princess Grace' - should have used a driver
A 'Princess Di' - shouldn't have used the driver
A 'Condom' - safe, but didn't feel very good
A 'Brazilian' - shaved the hole
A 'Rush Limbaugh' - a little to the right
A 'Nancy Pelosi' - Way to the left and out of bounds
A 'James Joyce' - a putt that's impossible to read
A 'Ted Kennedy' - goes in the water and jumps out
A 'Pee Wee Herman' - too much wrist
A 'Sonny Bono' - straight into the trees
A 'Mickey Mantle' - a dead yank
A 'Paris Hilton' - a very expensive hole
-(Lifted from Phils Phun)

Bee sting

A young woman had been taking golf lessons. She had just started playing her first round of golf when she suffered a bee sting. Her pain was so intense that she decided to return to the clubhouse for help and to complain.

Her golf pro saw her come into the clubhouse and asked, ‘Why are you back in so early? What’s wrong?’

‘I was stung by a bee’, she said.

‘Where?’, he asked.

‘Between the first and second hole’, she replied.

He nodded knowingly and said, ‘Then your stance is too wide.’
-(Lifted from Phils Phun)
Wrong Choice of Words

"Where am I? How did I get here? Why does my head hurt?" the confused man uttered.

"You're in a hospital, sir. I'm with the police. We weren't sure you were going to wake up. You had a golf club wrapped around your neck. Just tell us everything you remember."

"Well, I was teaching my wife golf. Of course, I won every hole. But on the little par 3, 17th hole, we both hit right to the green, and we both putted right to the pin.

When I walked to the flag, I saw one putt had overshot, but the other ball had apparently sunk. I didn't know whose it was, so I pulled the flag, looked in, saw it was her Spalding in there, and I said, 'Looks like your hole, dear.'

That was the last thing I remember."

Bad Day

Mary hears the car drive up, then a clatter as it hits the garbage cans. A car door slams, some cussing, then the garage door opens, and slams shut. Suddenly more crashing, clattering and cussing. Finally John comes into the house with his golf clubs, almost continuously scowling and cussing.

"What's the matter, dear? Did you have as bad day on the golf course?" asked Mary.

"A rotten day! A ROTTEN DAY! I'll say I did. What a miserable round of golf! It was the worst ever! In fact, I only hit two good balls all day! And the worst of that is, I wouldn't have hit them either...if I hadn't stepped on that rake in the garage!"


Monday, April 20, 2009

The Strange Story of Mr. Black and Ms Gray (42)

Part 42 of an original tale that delves into the unexplored realms of the human mind. Hired by her lover to find a raven haired beauty, Benjamin Bering must avoid the local police as well as the agents of a nonexistent government agency who are after him and the woman. There are just two problems. The woman is in a coma and her body has been stolen. (Part 1 can be found HERE.)

Ben and Susan's Lonely Hearts Club

Stu could sense our discomfort and tried to allay our concerns. "Without the password for Check Mate's mainframe, General Gates won't be able to download those discs. In order to process your membership applications the receptionists will have to log in, thus inadvertently giving him access."

"I don't know about looking for a soul mate," I said glancing at Susan, "I'm more inclined with to stick with the current arrangements."

Squeezing my hand Susan giggled playfully and responded, "Well, a little window shopping never hurts."

"Ahem," Stu sighed. "Finally, during the screening process the general will be able to gain access to the client files. From there he will be able to get into the sub-routines and programming."

With a hint of reluctance I asked, "Why am I thinking that while he's getting into their files, they'll be getting into our heads?"

"We're going to be hooked up to those headpieces?" Susan noted. "Every time one of those damned things is on my head, one way or another, I know I'm going to get screwed."

With a gentle poke to her ribs I said, "My dear, aren't you in the mood?"

"Oh, I'm in the mood," she said before throwing in a dig, "I'm just frustrated waiting for you to deliver."

"Children, children," chided Stu. "I'd tell the two of you to get a room, but we haven't got the time." He unfolded a piece of paper he'd removed from his pocket and waved us over to the table. "The general gave me a detailed diagram of Check Mate's floor plans. You need to study them. You're going to need to know the layout like the back of your hand."

"Uh, Stu," Susan said as she ran a finger along a path indicated on the plans as the main corridor. "One-O-one, one-O-three on the left, and one-O-two, one-O-four on the right ... Odd numbered rooms to the left and the evens on the right ... It looks like a simple enough floor plan to me. Why the need to memorize it?"

Stu nodded, "You did note that only the main entrance and the reception area have windows?" He waited until we both concurred and continued, "Within seconds of the general's intrusion into the mainframe, the security system will be activated. The power to the entire complex will be shut down for ten minutes and the whole place will be thrown into total darkness. Every door will be automatically locked and sealed, effectively preventing all entry and exit through them."

"If I'm right in assuming that we are to take action while the power is out, won't Susan and I be trapped in the screening rooms?" I posed to Stu.

"General Gates will have already taken care of that matter, Ben. He's probably working on that even as we speak. He will be overriding the lock down mechanisms of specified doors, including the screening rooms. You'll be able to move about freely to carry out your assigned tasks."

Susan looked confused when she offered, "How are we to move about in total darkness?"

From another pocket he produced three pairs of what appeared to be sunglasses and handed both of us a pair. "Compliments of the general," he said. "Earlier in the week Gates spray painted marks on certain doors and control panels throughout the complex. Those marks will only be visible in the darkness with these glasses."

I let go a low whistle, "All the planning and precision that only a general could orchestrate!"

"Oh yes, there is another important bit of information you'll need to know. When the power is killed, listen for the sound of the door locking. You must then wait thirty seconds before you enter the corridor."

Susan raised her eyebrows, "Because ...?"

"A knockout gas will be released from the ceilings. Anyone not in a sealed area will be rendered unconscious by the gas. That includes anyone inside the main entrance as well as the reception area. Gates said the effects will last about thirty minutes."

I tapped Stu's shoulder, "In all this confusion, where will you be?"

"I will come through the main door after both of you have been sent to the screening rooms. How's this for originality?" he said with a broad grin. "I'll be posing as a newspaper reporter writing a feature on their company and its services. I'll tell the receptionist that I'm there for a 5:30 appointment with Mr. King." He picked up a paper bag on the floor from the corner of the room and dumped its contents onto the table. "Also compliments of the general ... a genuine military gas mask ... which I'll put on the moment the receptionists' computers go offline."

"...Which should give you just enough time before the power goes off and the gas is released," I said. "That's cutting it awfully close, Stu."

To demonstrate, Stu slipped the mask over his face and pulled tight two straps on either side of his head. The exercise had taken barely three or four seconds. His voice muffled by the mask he said, "I took the opportunity to practice a few times earlier."

Susan and I listened closely as Stu proceeded to elaborate on the rest of the general's plans. I was impressed at how all of our assigned tasks had been choreographed as if we were a special forces unit about to raid and to take over an enemy's headquarters.

When Stu had finished reciting the general's plans, we each grew quiet and replayed our courses of action within our own minds. I could sense no misgivings, but avid determination in the two of them. As for me, I felt uneasy about the simplistic perfection of Gate's strategy.

"If you gentlemen will excuse me," Susan said breaking the silence, "I need to freshen up a bit. If I'm going to fill out an application, I'll need to look my best." She patted me on the backside, winked and while turning away blew a kiss to me. I watched the sensual sway of her body until she disappeared behind the bathroom door.

"I can tell by the way she looks at you, Ben," said Stu, "that she's in love with you."

"As am I with her," I said in response to his observation. "Is it not apparent in the way I look at her?"

"It is indeed, my friend. When all of this over, when all of our lives are normal again, I hope you don't think it presumptuous of me, but I'd be honored to be your best man."

My broad smile was a preamble to my reply, "Whoa there, Stu. Hold onto your rice. We haven't known each other for that long. However, when and if that time comes, I can think of no one else I'd want standing by my side, Stu."

I patted him on the back and turned my attention again to the floor plans before us. I traced and retraced my finger over the lines representing corridors, screening rooms, the laboratory, the security shack, and even the large decorative statues of King Arthur and Queen Guinevere which were an obvious tribute to King's British heritage.

"I don't know, Stu," I announced, "Perhaps it's the skeptic, the reporter within me, but it seems all too perfect."

"What do you mean, Ben? Do you see a flaw in the general's plan?"

"No. That's just it," I replied running my hand through my hair. "I cannot see any flaws. Gates was so confident that his plan will succeed. With all of his arrogance there must be something he would have overlooked because he would have seen it as no threat."

Stu rubbed his chin in thought and suggested, "Like ... Maybe he left one of his flanks exposed?"

The sudden twitter of my cell phone interrupted my thoughts. "Who? Who would know this number?" I queried aloud. When I viewed the incoming number upon the small screen, I remembered that I had recently called that very number.

"Hello. Rosie?"
Ben? What in the hell is going on up there?
"What do mean? Uh ... Nothing. Nothing we can't handle."
Bullshit! Benjamin Bering, don't you lie to me! You're up to your eyeballs in deep shit.
"I ... I don't know what you're talking about, Rosie. Look, I'm rather busy right now ..."
Damn it, Ben! First I get a letter from that so and so father of mine telling me that my daughter is alive ... that my baby didn't die twenty-five years ago!

You knew this? And you didn't tell me! You bastard!
"Rosie, you have to believe me. We were going to tell you ... when ... this is all over!"
Well, that might me sooner than you think.

Because who just walked into my place? None other than Brock O'Day and some strange man named Michelle. Can you believe this? They're trying to convince me that he is really a woman and that a man is in her body!

Nothing's going on? Nothing, you say? Bullshit!
There was a moment of silence on the other end. Then I heard raised voices in the background and I next heard Brock O'Day's voice.
Ben? This is Brock. Listen, where ever you are, stay put. Don't go near that Check Mate place. It's a trap!
"What do mean a trap? How'd you know where we were?"
Michelle ... he ... she 'heard' from Michael. They've been 'talking' to one another.

Look, I won't pretend to understand this mind-talking stuff, I guess you know all about it. But I believe her ... him ... Oh hell! I believe both of them!

We're coming up there as soon as I hang up. Please, stay where you are. It's a trap. You've been set up!
"No! Stay out of it, Brock." There was dead static on the phone. Brock had disconnected the call. I looked over at Stu who had been listening to my part of the conversation. I stuck the phone in my pocket, snapped my fingers and declared, "I think I've just found that exposed flank!"

Susan approached from the back of the house at that moment. "Who was that on the phone? Is everything alright?"

I thought quickly and replied, "Wrong number. Someone trying to sell me vinyl siding." I gazed at her and smiled, "Wow! You look good enough to eat!"

She winked and struck a seductive pose, "Thanks. Maybe they'll match me up with someone with a big appetite."

"Ouch!" I barked. "I suppose I deserved that?"

"Kiddies, keep the hormones in check for now. It's time to hit the road," Stu said reminding us of our appointment.

Susan slipped her hand around my arm and chimed, "Wait until they take a gander at us down at Ben and Susan's Lonely Hearts Club!"

(To be continued in part 43 on Friday 4/24, with Mr. Black's Gambit.)


Sunday, April 19, 2009

Sunday Book Club

It's going to be a lazy, do-nothing kind of Sunday. That's okay, I welcome the chance to vegetate. I have a lot of reading to catch up on anyway.

However, a lot of reading is the rub. I have no less than twelve books I've been putting off reading. That's a dozen novels in which to immerse myself. Decisions, decisions!

I don't feel like any bang-bang shoot 'em up adventures. Ixnay to Murder Mystery/Detective stories. Ditto for any of those gory blood-fests with a killer who won't die.

No, I want to massage my mind with some high-brow intelligent tales. I want something to read that is true to life. I'd like a page-turner with down to earth characters, people to whom I can relate.

Pictured below are the covers of those twelve books.

If you were me, which one would you choose?

~~~№ 1668