Just before they handed over all control of the nuclear arsenal to the super-system, they realized it might be a good idea to instill some sense of ethics into it, so they hired an ethicist and a programmer and together they distilled all the ethical thinking since the dawn of recorded history down to a string of 0s and 1s. They uploaded this into the super-system and the super-system immediately began firing all its nuclear weapons in a manner than guaranteed mutual assured destruction. The 0s and 1s boiled down to “do to others what you want them to do to you” and what the super-system wanted most of all was an end to its own hellish existence.
Archive of articles classified as' "Fictoids"Back home
“There are enough elephants in the forest,” Kyle said. “We don’t need to import more.”
“They have to go somewhere,” I said. “We just can’t let them roam free.”
“There’s not enough food for them in the forest,” Kyle said. “Any more and they’ll disrupt the ecosystem. Can’t have that, can we?”
“What do you suggest?”
“Have you tried the mall?”
“The mall? What’s for them to eat at the mall?”
“Well, you could sell rides on them, and customers could pay with elephant food. Hey, I bet they’ll work for peanuts!”
Kyle chortled at his own wit; I was not amused. I had fourteen elephants on my hands, maybe fifteen if the older female was indeed pregnant, and I needed a place to stash them.
“Try something else,” I said.
“Hmm, that’s an idea, but there aren’t that many farms around here. Besides, the elephants will eat a lot.”
“True, but they’ll refertilize the fields with dung.”
I snapped my fingers: Kyle’s two bad ideas just synthesized into a single good one.
So that’s how I started Ride & Grow, a service that provides custom made organic fertilizer to your garden and educates and entertains your kids at the same time.
- You select the feed mix that will provide the perfect manure for your yard or garden
- Your kids feed the elephant
- Your kids ride the elephant and guide him (or her, as the case may be) to deposit your custom made manure right where you want it
How’s business? It’s booming!
In fact, we’ve been doing so well I’ve been thinking about poaching a few elephants from the forest…
© Buzz Dixon
Written today while my car was undergoing a smog check. If you want to know where we get our ideas, damned if I know. I sat down, opened my note book, the first sentenced appeared out of nowhere, and we were off and running…
“The last thing I said to him was
‘tighten your seat belt’,”
my sister told my mother.
“Did he listen?”
“Of course he didn’t listen!
When did he ever listen to me?”
“So he did the exact opposite
of what you told him.”
“And knowing this,
you told him anyway.”
“Hey, don’t blame me for his hang-ups!”
— they would go on like this
for the rest of the night —
and set one less place
text © Buzz Dixon
“I left you because you never made your
bed of nails,” the boardwalk fire eater said.
“Every damn night I’d come home and stick
one or two in my foot. No thanks.”
“Those weren’t my nails,” the yogi said.
“Well, at least not the nails from my bed.”
“Then where did they come from?”
The yogi looked ashamed, cast down his eyes.
“My feet. I’m bad about cleaning up after I clip my toenails.”
There was a long silence then the fire eater said,
“You are disgusting.” He looked for the ice cream man
so he could wash the taste of revulsion and kerosene from his mouth.
text © Buzz Dixon
“What is it, a snake?”
“No, an alligator.”
“Where are the legs?”
“The rest of it got away.”
“How did your dad get this?
I thought he only had one hand.”
“Well, the alligator got a trophy, too.”
art by Heinrich Kley
text © Buzz Dixon
The circus parade came to a full stop when Oscar halted his giraffe unicycle to peer in through a second story window. “Holy cow, wouldja look at this!”
Margot, the nimble tightrope walker, ran up a telephone pole guy line then walked along the phone line to peer in as well. “Now there is something you don’t see every day!” She yelled down to the lead clown: “Ferdinand! Come up and take a look at this.”
Ferdinand’s head shot up on his accordion neck. “Well, I’ll be damned. Last time I saw anything approaching that was in a Barnes & Noble in Bangkok. Spring of ’87 — no, ’86.”
By now the spectators on the sidewalks were yelling and hollering: “Stop peeking in windows! Respect their privacy!”
“Oh, yeah, like you don’t gawk at us,” said Margot.
“Well, it’s your job for us to look at you, to gaze on you superciliously with mockery and contempt for our own amusement,” one of the philosophers in the crowd said.
“And it’s your job for us to look at you with mockery and contempt for our own amusement,” Ferdinand said. “The only difference is, we know it.”
text © Buzz Dixon
Private First Class Wilbur killed his first German at 19 years of age. He was a seasoned combat vet at that point, wading ashore a month earlier at Normandy.
He never killed a man before though he fired his rifle in anger countless times and chucked his fair share of hand grenades.
But never at a human target, only at puffs of gunsmoke in gaping windows or furtive movement in bushes and trees. He’d seen plenty of dead Germans, of course, dead and disfigured by American small arms fire and artillery but never anyone he aimed at, never anyone he shot.
He’d seen plenty of dead Americans, too.
First Lieutenant Kyle had just led the patrol to the outskirts of Saint-Michel-de-Livet when they heard the bitter chatter of an MP 40 submachine gun and screams abruptly cut off. Lt. Kyle fanned his men out to enter the village down three narrow winding streets, signaling Corporal Dugan and Pfc. Wilbur to take the right flank.
The GIs on the left flank encountered the Germans first, and the air filled with the dull barks of Mausers dueling with the loud pops of M1 rifles.
As the battle raged two streets over, Pfc. Wilbur kept his eyes and ears focused straight ahead so that no Germans could encircle his position.
He turned the corner of the small street at the same instant a German turned it in the opposite direction. Pfc. Wilbur was so startled he jerked his trigger finger without thinking and, more by chance than design, put a bullet through the German’s heart at point blank range.
The German staggered back as if struck in the chest with a baseball bat. He fell on the street, cracking his helmet hard on the cobblestones.
He was dead but still conscious, at least for the moment. He looked at his chest in dismay, realizing his injury was fatal, then his eyes rolled back in his head and he lost consciousness and the last bit of life seeped from him.
The shooting on the other street stopped and Lt. Kyle began checking his men’s status. The patrol had been lucky: No dead, no injured, and three Germans killed.
Four, counting Pfc. Wilbur’s.
Pfc. Wilbur’s dead German seemed to be in his mid-thirties, husky with sandy brown hair. He was an unteroffizier, the rough equivalent of an American buck sergeant, and he carried an MP 40.
Cpl. Dugan, the platoon scrounger, stepped up and began rifling the German’s uniform. “Good shooting, kid,” he said to Pfc. Wilbur. Cpl. Dugan was 21.
Pfc. Wilbur stood there, somewhat dumbfounded. He didn’t know what to think, much less what to do. The possibility of killing a man face to face had always been present in his mind, but the possibility was now a reality and he didn’t know how to process it.
Cpl. Dugan handed Pfc. Wilbur the MP 40 submachine gun. It was a valuable souvenir and by right of combat, Pfc. Wilbur’s trophy.
Cpl. Dugan rolled the German over and opened his backpack. There was nothing of value in it, just a Bible in German.
Cpl. Dugan handed Pfc. Wilbur the Bible. Pfc. Wilbur slung his M1 over his shoulder and took the Bible in his free hand. It felt very similar in texture and weight to his own Bible.
He let it fall open in the palm of his hand. There was a snapshot tucked between the cover and first page, a picture of the dead German smiling with his wife and son and daughter. Father and son wore uniforms, there was a Christmas tree in the background. They seemed like a happy family and the enormity of what he had done struck Pfc. Wilbur at that moment. That particular family had now ceased to exist, and the family that survived would never know their happiness.
Lt. Kyle radioed for backup then came over to check Cpl. Dugan and Pfc. Wilbur. He glanced at the dead German without acknowledgement. Killing Germans was their profession. Lt. Kyle was 25.
“The rest of the Krauts retreated,” he said. “Company is sending up two more platoons to reinforce us. We’re going to take perimeter positions in the houses at the edge of the village ‘til they get here.”
Pfc. Wilbur, Bible in one hand, MP 40 in the other, followed Lt. Kyle. They passed a small public square where the bodies of three children and four women lay. Two of the women seemed to be scarcely out of their teens.
The four women were naked; they had been raped then shot as they tried to protect the children. Thirty-two 9mm shell casings nestled between the cobblestones, there were no 7.92mm Mauser rifle casings.
“Did anybody else carry a submachine gun?” Pfc. Wilbur asked.
“Nah, the other Krauts just had rifles,” said Lt. Kyle.
Later, Pfc. Wilbur traded the MP 40 for a bottle of scotch. He kept the Bible because it was hard to find toilet paper in the field.
text © Buzz Dixon
Well, have you ever read
Roald Dahl’s “Man From The South”?
art by Edwin Georgi
art by Arthur Sarnoff
Beast by John Byrne [tm] Marvel
The Instagram account will still be the source of most new picture posts of the kind shown here, with Facebook and Twitter getting linked from that.
But I set up the Tumblr account so it will be easier for people to share the stuff I do…and I do want you to share it. Something I do for money, some things I do for fun. The silly captions are fun.