All Kids Know About The Toe Eating Monster

…who lives under beds

The Doclopedia #85

Yeah, Joe was average…the kind of average that a smart guy could use…the kind of average that could give a private¬†dick an edge when it came to dealing with tough mugs and hot dames

Average Joes: Joe Hinkley, Barber

Me? Hey, I’m just the guy who gives shaves and haircuts. Yeah, I might hear sometin’ interesting now and then…sometimes some interesting mugs come in. Sell information? Me? Now whatever gave you that idea?

What’s this? A picture of President Jackson? Hey, he’s one of my favorites! I’ll just put him in a place of honor here in my wallet.

So, you say some guy got a hot lead escort to the next life, eh? Up at Griffith Park? Hmmm…seems to me I might have heard a couple of fellas talking about having been up there on the night in question. One of them may have been a large gentleman of Italian ancestry who has a scar on one cheek and walks with a limp. The other guy might have been a weaselly looking little bastard who needs to learn how to tip properly.

Tony the Gimp and Eddie the Mouse? Never heard of ’em? But if I had, I might guess that they tend to spend most nights down at the Bluebird Club on Sepulveda. I hear that it’s a fine establishment that a smart guy might enter through the back door if he wanted to avoid being spotted.

There now, all trimmed up and you look like a million bucks. Another picture of Mr. Jackson? Why, thank you, sir!

Doc Tempest vs The Rain Of Madness

…from the May, 1951 issue

The Doclopedia #84

Arrr, this Joe be a right popular feller among the pirates!

Average Joes: Joe Brown, Tavernkeeper

Here ya go, matey, fresh off the boat from Jamaica today. That there rum’ll put a wind in yer sails fer sure! Just got inta port, eh? Well, ye came at a good time, I reckon.

Oh yeah, it be a tad quiet in here now, but I expect that ’round noon the ships’ll drop anchor and the Council O’ Captains will start their monthly meetin’ over on the Red Lady. That be Captain Irina’s ship, an’ right now she’s the High Captain. They’ll talk on all sortsa matters, includin’ what to do about th’ upcoming alliance between the Spanish and the French.

Ye’ve not heard o’ that? Well, them two countries has gone and decided ta send a small armada out here ta teach us honest pirates a lesson or two. Now normally, that would be a very bad stretch of weather, but I’m hearin’ that the Council has a little surprise fer them French & Spanish dogs. Not sure exactly what it is, but they’ve been sendin’ shiploads of supplies over ta Angelfish Island where that perfesser fella and his mates done set up shop a few years ago. Could have somethin’ to do with them strange tales people been spreadin’ about seein’ lights in th’ sky at night. Whatever ’tis, I’m bettin’ it catches that little armada by surprise.

Anyway, once the Council meetin’ ends, things around here’ll get hoppin’ or I’ll kiss a barnacle!

The Rare And Beautiful And Huggable Giant Yellow Bunnies Of Potawango Island

…I’m gonna hug ’em and squeeze ’em, George.

HAPPY 14th ANNIVERSARY TO MY SWEET ANGEL, GRACE! I love you, baby!

And now…

The Doclopedia #83

Yippie Ky Ay, Joe’s in the Wild West!

Average Joes: Joe Chang, Bathhouse Proprietor

Yes, yes…you’ve come to the right place for a bath, sir. For only 50 cents, we’ll fix you up a nice hot bath and give you a bar of fancy French milled soap. Very nice! For slightly more, we can give you the extra soft towels, too. A beautiful young lady to share the bath? I’m sorry, sir, but that is beyond our meager offerings. Still, I would suggest that after your bath you visit Miss Becky’s Sporting House, just 3 door down from us.

Yes, sir, I’ve been here quite a number of years. My lack of accent? Well, that comes from being raised right here in Virginia City, by a missionary couple. My parents came here with them as servants after their mission in China was cut short. Unfortunately, my parents died of a fever when I was but a year old. Reverend Harris and his wife raised me as their son.

A drink? Oh, by all means, sir! Here we go, a fine bourbon that a former customer had shipped in from Kentucky. Join you? Why, thank you, sir. Aah, very nice.

That tub on the wall? That’s the tub that the Sunset Kid was in when he was gunned down by Frisco Jim Delaney. Oh, yes sir, it was an exciting night here in Virginia City. It all started when the Kid was over at the Silver Dollar Saloon…

Atomic Pants

…really!

 

The Doclopedia #82

Average Joes: Joe Konk, Security Guard

 

Uhh, yeah, I’m the only security guard here at the ACME factory. It’s rough work, but what else am I gonna do? I’m not good lookin’ like Mickey Mouse or smart like Bugs Bunny.

Besides, I recover pretty quickly from all of the assaults by thieving toons. Why, I’ve been konked with baseball bats, hit in the face with frying pans, had pianos dropped on my head, run through a pasta machine, shot by 27 kinds of gun, blown up, made to watch daytime television, eaten by a tiger, covered with cement, squished into a number 303 can, pounded into the ground by a huge mallet, chomped by a crocodile, inflated like a balloon, steamrollered flat, stomped on by elephants and painted pink. And that was just this week!

The 35 Things That You Should Know How To Do To Avoid Crazy Women

…#1: Never associate with crazy women

 

The Doclopedia #81

Average Joes: Joe Wyznowski, Cemetery Custodian

 

Yeah, I know, it’s a creepy job taking care of a cemetery. Some of my friends thought I was nuts, but hell, the pay is good and I get this nice little cottage to live in. It’s a quiet neighborhood…ha ha ha…and door to door salesmen never come around. I got nice gardening all around me that the ladies from the Historical Society take care of and there’s lots of songbirds and squirrels and such. Yeah, I like it here just fine.

Oh sure, we get some vandals every now and then…and there have been a few exhumations by the cops, you know, to help solve crimes. Last one of those was just a few weeks ago, when they dug up old Jasper Hood in order to find out if his wife had poisoned him. Turned out she did, with some poison mushrooms in his pasta sauce. Kinda put me off Italian for a couple of weeks, I tell ya.

Every now and then you get a wacko coming on the grounds, like that creepy goth guy who insisted that his dead girlfriend was not really dead. He got hauled off by the cops because he had all this vampire slaying stuff in his bag. They sent him up to Pinewood Sanitarium, but I heard that he slit his own throat a few days later and bled out. Anyway, they cremated him and that was that.

Ghosts? No, I haven’t seen…ok, look, I’ll tell ya this but it’s just between you and me…I’ve seen a couple of folks walking around the grounds who had a see through complexion. Nothing threatening, just one is some guy from around 1890 who strolls around with a big phantom boxer dog and the other is this young chick from about 1968, a hippie type, who dances on some of the headstones near her grave. But like I said, nothing sinister. Actually, they guy tips his hat when he sees me and the girl flashes me the peace sign.

Zombies? Hey, you’ve been reading too much pop fiction. But even if they did show up, I ‘ve got a 12 gage pump action that would take off a head slick as a whistle.

So anyway, it might be a creepy job for some folks, but all in all, it beats pumping gas.

Coelacanth Breeder’s Quarterly

…now with full color photos!

 

The Doclopedia #80

Average Joes: Joe Orion, Starship Mechanic

 

Oh now, jeez, I haven’t seen one of dese in years. An old Asimov 250 wit’ jump drive, right? Gosh, this is a classic, don’t ya know? There’s a fella back home in Fargo has got one o’ dese. ‘Course, he tricked his out wit’ da fancy nanopaint and some o’ dem fake Heinlein guns, but boy, he sure looks good in da annual Cruise Night parade.

Can I fix it? Oh yeah, you betcha! Might take a few days to get the parts, but I can have her up and runnin’ soon as I get ’em. I know a guy over on Seledara 4 who has a parts yard an’ he’ll get ’em here in a couple of days, fer sure. Probably be costin’ ya seven or eight thousand credits, can’t be real sure yet. Sixty day guarantee on all parts an’ labor, unless you see hard combat.

If yer lookin’ fer a place ta stay, dey got nice rooms over dere at da Olympus Mons Hilton. Great buffet, too. Can’t beat our Martian cattle for a nice big steak or slice o’ prime rib. Dey got maybe 200 kindsa beer, too.

We got a buncha folks from Titan in town dis week and things have been gettin’ a bit excitin’, don’t ya know. Dem outlanders get in-system, dey just start raisin’ hell.

Say now, is that a Ellison Industries particle cannon ya got there? Ya know, for an extra 500 credits, I can install the full auto upgrade for ya…

Pizza My Heart

…isn’t that a Janis Joplin song?

 

The Doclopedia #78

Average Joes: Joe Doakes, Diner Cook

 

So like I was sayin’, ya work at a place like this…on a busy corner in a big city…and ya see all kindsa things. An’ I ain’t just talkin’ about good lookin’ dames and rich guys, either. Hell, I was on my break one day last year when that Dr. Havoc guy tried to destroy the bankin’ district with his army of robots. I was across the street, talkin’ with Benny the newsboy about them bums out in Brooklyn blowin’ that big game and we saw the whole deal go down, just three blocks from here! Fifteen foot tall robots just wreckin’ hell outta everythin’, bombs goin’ off, all hell breakin’ loose! It’s a damn good thing them armored G-men showed up ta knock them robots inta next week.

Then there was the time that Doc Tempest…yeah, THE Doc Tempest…comes runnin’ in here, asks for all my salt and fist full of bay leaves. I gives ’em to him and he tosses me a twenty dollar bill! Turns out, him and his crew was fightin’ some sorta zombies one block over. Yeah, I didn’t know salt and bay leaves would stop a zombie either, but hey, ya live and learn. And ya spend that extra twenty steppin’ out with yer gal, right?

And hey, don’t even get me started on what the night shift is like around here. I gotta start getting’ my burger patties ready for the lunch rush anyway.