Atomic Pants

…really!

365 People, Places & Things #82

Today, Joe gets Tooned

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

365 People, Places & Things #81

Joe does Horror, but it doesn’t seem to want to do him.

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!

365 People, Places & Things #80

Jooooooe innnn spaaaaaaaace!

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?

365 People, Places & Things #78

Here’s Joe in the Pulp 1930’s, still just doing his job.

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.

Girls Who Like Pie And Naked Hopscotch

…they were…aw, nevermind

365 People, Places & Things #77

Due to my new work schedule, my writing time is greatly reduced. The result is that y’all get two more weeks of Retro 365 entries. This time, it’s 14 Average Joes.

Average Joes: Joe Jones, Sanitation Engineer

Yeah, I’m a garbage collector. So? Somebody has to do it and the pay ain’t bad. Sure you sometimes end up smelling pretty funky by the end of the day, but a good shower and some Old Spice and yer a new man.

And hey, some interesting stuff happens along the route sometimes. Like that time me and Duffy found that guy all cut up and stuck in a dumpster over behind the Wal-Mart. We answered all kinda questions for the homicide cops. Then, some Feds who said they were with Homeland Security asked us even more questions, but they got kinda weird. I mean, who the hell asks ya if you’ve seen any wolves in the middle of the friggin’ city, fer chrissake?

And then there was this time that Duffy found some strange lookin’ eggs in with a buncha garden waste. We figured they were eggs from somebody’s bigass python or somethin’, so we chucked ’em into the bushes near Golden Gate Park. That was just a few months before all them people got killed in the park and they had to close it off for a while there. Me and Duffy figure it was a bear come down from Marin county that did the killin’.

Anyway, sometimes ya find stuff ya can use or sell, like when we found a suit that belonged to Tarantula-Boy and we sold it to the Daily Trumpet editor for a cool three bills. Of course, later, T-Boy took it back, but hey, not our problem, ya know?

So yeah, bein’ a garbage collector ain’t a bad gig.

Dice Addicts Anonymous

…my name is Doc and I’m a diceaholic

Here now, the finish to our first Retro 365 week. Starting tomorrow: Things That Blow Up Real Good Week

365 People, Places & Things #49

Any pet owner will tell you that dogs & cats are, by turns, cute, stupid, smart, loving, infuriating, disgusting, goofy, hilarious, stubborn and sweet. Today’s characters are mostly goofy and stupid.

Dogs & Cats Living Together: Weenie and Bill

Weenie is a fat female Miniature Dachshund and Bill is a scroungy looking male cat of indeterminate breed. If you combined their IQ scores, you get a total equal to that of the average bar of soap.

Weenie is full of energy, but very accident prone. She has hurt herself and others 34 times just by trying to lick her own foot. She also has chronic flatulence of the sort that should put her on some EPA list.

Bill is also full of energy, especially when it relates to food. Pity that he is even more accident prone than Weenie, especially when it comes to falling off high places or getting electrocuted. He also should probably stay away from fans when they are operating.

As if Mother Nature wanted to make up for shortchanging them in the brains department, they are both very tough and resilient. That’s a good thing, since otherwise they both would have never lived out their first year of life.

They are the best of friends and often come up with “fun ideas” for whiling away the time while their humans are at work. These “fun ideas” often take the form of overly involved plots to get some extra food or get into things that they aren’t supposed to. Hilarity, bodily harm and property damage ensue.