Grunion Time

by Leonard Richardson
May 15, 1997


SPICY!
SPICY!
SPICY!

The Silent RadioTM would display only the word SPICY! It would display the word SPICY!, perform an exotic wipe that left the screen blank, and then display the word SPICY! again. Some kind of brainwashing attempt, apparently.


Dr. Luz Kabassannah laughed maniacally as she slammed down on the clutch, threw her pickup into park, pushed open the driver's side door, and jumped out into the pavement. "The fools!" she laughed, unlocking the nearby chain-link gate. "They scoffed at me when I told them of my theories! But now, now I'll show them! I'll show them all! Ah, ha ha ha ha ha!" As Dr. Kabassannah went through the gate, her flashlight flickered across the lurking giant of the liquid nitrogen tank behind the fence, briefly illuminating the lettering WARNING: DOES NOT SUPPORT LIFE. Her slender fingers reached upward and opened a valve, feeling the sudden temperature change as the supercooled liquid began rushing through a pipe, down through the ground and into a secret underground tunnel. It would be about an hour before the liquid nitrogen reached its destination downtown. Once more Dr. Kabassannah's mad laughter rent the night. "Ding, ding, ding," said the pickup. She had left the door open.


The grunion began to spawn. Flip-flopping up the shore of Cabrillo Beach, they deposited their eggs in the sand, that another generation might survive to carry on their legacy. Somewhere in the distance, 80s music played.


The guy on the other end of the cellphone felt a chill wash over him. It was as though some higher being had weighed his life and found it wanting. Without warning, he hung up his cellphone and kept driving.


O.J. Simpson was asleep. CNN was there. O.J. wouldn't let them use his bathroom so CNN had brought in two Porta-Potties for the cameramen. They were outside O.J.'s house and had to be removed on street-cleaning day.


Mark Thompson and Brian Phelps had just finished hosting a fund-raising event. As Brian loosened his tie, Mark picked up a leftover turkey and avocado sandwich from a nearby platter and was surprised at how cold it was. It was as if the sandwich had been frozen ahead of time and been incompletely thawed. He ate the sandwich anyway.


Paul Moyer had hijacked the Channel 4 Evening News. Fred Roggin was tied up in the corner, while Kelly Lange was crying hysterically in the manly arms of her secret lover, Fritz Coleman with the weather. Paul, meanwhile, was conducting an in-depth interview with himself. He would sit in one of the chairs, ask a question, run to the camera to change the camera angle, then sit in the other chair and answer the question. When it was time to break for a commercial, he would look straight at the camera and say, "Hot, spicy chicken comin' atcha! After this!" It was all on the teleprompter, of course.


An advertising artist in Santa Monica looked at the latest focus group results in dismay. First, they had wanted a bluish-pink tint to the amphorous blobs in the lava lamp in the corner of the living room of the couple in the furniture store print ad. Now, the same test audience preferred an orange-green tint by a factor of three to one. He started up the latest version of Photoshop on his PowerMac and began to sob. What in hell did people want?


THE END


This document (source) is part of Crummy, the webspace of Leonard Richardson (contact information). It was last modified on Tuesday, April 13 2004, 04:17:23 Nowhere Standard Time and last built on Thursday, August 28 2014, 01:00:04 Nowhere Standard Time.

Crummy is © 1996-2014 Leonard Richardson. Unless otherwise noted, all text licensed under a Creative Commons License.

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