Sunday, November 12, 2006

New Cracked Review Blog!


All Cracked review have been moved to their own blog!



Friday, July 14, 2006

Cyril P. Welcomes "The Spirit of "76!"

“The Spirit of ‘76!” I’m sure you’ve seen the banner hanging proud and large across the front of the Rialto. For the next few weeks, they’re showing films solely from the year 1976. As you may or may not know, I don’t believe that hopping back into our history like this is all that great. I recently had a chance to glance at my calendar and we’re no longer in 1976 so the lessons taught by these films are no longer valid. There is a reason why they make new movies: Because they are important! Be that as it may, the Rialto is showing these “oldies.” And, the editors have requested that I review them in my “normal fashion.” So, I shall. “The Spirit of ‘76!” is here. Let’s enjoy together. Shall we? We shall.
One question I had right off the bat was: Where was “Queen Kong?” All week long that had been the advertised film. But, when I arrived, the marquee read “Next Week: Queen Kong!” Oh well. This week: “Kiss of the Tarantula.” Arachnids over apes? Were they trying to tell us something? You decide.
So, the tarantulas who kiss are owned by a girl whose name is (most likely) Genevieve. An odd gal who doesn’t have very many human friends but does have many, many spider friends. And, they do her bidding whenever her bidding needs doing. In fact, that’s the gist of this “old favorite.” A strange girl who spends a lot of time with spiders uses them to kill people who throw her the grief. Thank you very much.
What about that scene with the make-out couple in the car, huh?! They’re smooching, it’s nice, it feels fine. Then, the car’s filled with spiders and the guy’s dead! Holy Crap! And the lady goes nuts! Holy Super Crap! Thank God I hadn’t met this odd gal when I was younger. Many’s the time she could have done a similar thing to me when I was in the woods, late at know what I mean. Although, I was never as distracted as make-out couples must have been. Actually, I probably would have got out of there before the spiders swarmed. In fact, I’m pretty sure of it. So, if you’re planning on kissing someone to distraction in a car in the dark, watch out for swarming. It happens. (Or it happened.)
Dear sweet Genny, I’ve got a thing or two I’d like to say to you...Come on, kid! Get with it! You can’t run around killing people with spiders all your life! Where’s that leading you? What’s the future hold? Someone doesn’t give you a job...kill him with spiders. Someone won’t go to the prom with you...death by spider. Someone cuts you off in traffic...spiders down their drawers. The love of your life runs off with your brother...smother them in spiders. I mean, it sounds great but it’s really just screwy! You need a hobby that’s less based in violence against other people. Something like model airplanes, doll collecting, finding shiny rocks, not hurting people. Oh, there you go. Making a hobby of not hurting people sounds like a great start. In fact, I would guess that that’s the lesson of today’s film: Don’t kill people with spiders. Take up productive hobbies of a non-violent nature. Join a Youth Group of some kind. I believe that Jesus was around in ‘76 so perhaps he could help you. And, as always, don’t do drugs.
(A quick disclaimer: As the film is an old one, the lesson may no longer apply.)
“Kiss of the Tarantula:” A journey forward from a past time to share its wonder in the present moment. Go to the Rialto and see what you think. Next week: “Queen Kong!” Bring the kids. Or they might just bring you.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Cyril P. Reviews an "Oldie But Newie!"

It’s funny. I watch a movie. It’s good for you. The memory of that movie is forever emblazoned on the mind. But, Hollywood makes a lot of movies. They constantly press forward, changing and refining ideas. Ideas that are important to them and us. Movie after movie floods my head. So, after 100 or more, I don’t retain exact memories of each movie. I retain the strains of thought from each and the build-up of intertwining moral and social threads. However, the individual moments all mold together into one. Luckily, Hollywood has found a solution. (Did you think they wouldn’t?) This mighty fixative? Remaking (with slightly subtle differences) films we’ve previously seen.

I haven’t watched “Halloween” in about five years. But, it doesn’t matter. Because I’ve just seen “Offerings.” The exact same movie but without a lot of the scares. Let’s be honest, it’s very tough to ingest the message when you can’t stop shriekin’! Know what I mean?

So, I present you now with “Offerings.”

We’ve seen it before. So, it makes everything a little easier.

Small town. The opening is certainly different. A little mute boy kills a relative. Granted, that’s not the part that’s different. The different part is how they present it. This new piece introduces the little girl who becomes a major part of the film.

“Ten Years Later”

The young woman has the house to herself. She has a friend who enjoys sex. The nutty fella has escaped from the loony bin (with a doctor in hot pursuit) and is going for the young woman whose name is nothing I currently remember. Let’s call her Sue-Anne. Sue-Anne is given “offerings’ from the crazy guy. An ear, a nose, a head, etc. He loves her, whereas Michael Meyers in “Halloween” seems to want to kill the girl.

I think this is what’s happened: We learn as we go. In “Halloween,” the young innocent is presented as the center of the stalk. She is what he is after. And, this has been the template for what has happened since. Some variation of that has permeated through each one of these. If the world is flat works for the best and brightest, why shouldn’t it work for me?

Well, they’ve re-thought their case. Our psychopathic innocent is now on the same level with our real innocent. He doesn’t want to hurt her. He wants to give her gifts and make sure she’s happy. Their re-alignment of this once over-the-top theme is very interesting. In the past, one saw the innocent making it to the end simply because she or he was the last one killed. Now, the innocent survives because the psycho doesn’t want to kill her.

Folks, the new thing is here! This is THE most important part of our new variation. Keep it in mind.

But, that wasn’t much of a review.

In Oklahoma (don’t make me sing it), some teens are having a heck of a time. It seems a boy they once picked on and pushed down a well is back to kill them. The funny thing is that the well doesn’t kill the boy or really seem to hurt him at all. The prologue ends with him falling in and the kids running away. Except for one little girl. His friend, Sue-Anne.

Well, then we get the “10 Years Later” and they tell us that that night the boy came out of the well and killed and ate his mom. That’s why he was put away. The well apparently sparked it and...really I don’t know. The events in the opening relate to the movie but not what got him put away. So, anyway...

“Ten Years Later”
The boy who was pushed in the well is coming to kill the kids who pushed the boy in the well. Except for the girl he likes (Sue-Anne). But, really, she was just there. She didn’t have anything to do with it.

Crazy McFriend squeezes one head in a vice, cuts a throat in a car, hangs one guy, decapitates a gal and so forth. And, that’s the line up. It feels like something we’ve seen before but we know we haven’t seen this.

In closing: Be good.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Mystery Writers...Listen Up!

Are you working on a 2-Minute Mystery or some sort of "Mini" Mystery
story that you need a snappy ending for? Do you sit up at nights saying "I
know, I just know, that I can write a mystery story as good as any of those
multi-millionaire writers."? Do you want to make some extra income? Was
a career as a Dental Assistant something that just didn't appeal? Well, I
am Your Catalyst!

I have a small stockpile of "Mini" mystery endings that can be extended
to novel-length endings if the client requires. Sometimes you have all the
characters assembled, everyone is ready to learn who the murderer is,
and you just bomb out-- No ending. How will you resolve things?

Read on.

Here are a sample of five solutions that could get you out of that

Detective **** knew that the Madame was lying because of the clock. She
could not have seen the clock the moment she entered because the
Cleaning Lady had moved the breakfront. But, she could have seen the clock in
the mirror, which means it was 1, not 11. Her alibi crumbles to dust.

Inspector **** brought the feather to tickle Uncle Mumfin's underarms.
There was no way that a man as ticklish as Mumfin had proven himself to be
would be able to keep the Colonel's frozen hands under his arms. So, if the
dead man's fingerprints weren't from an abortive attempt at thawing, then
when else could they be from? The Inspector says it was Murder!

Two things become apparent when you examine the carriage marks: 1) they
were made with a Standard issue wooden wheel Model RT19, which were made by
the Bradenton Brothers from 1887-1892. It was a replacement for the RT18
and was replaced itself by the RY12728'. 2) The marks could not have been by a
horse-drawn carriage as the gradient of 15% would not allow for a
comparable exchange of momentum with the shoes that the animals would have been
wearing. So, Mrs. Henderson pulled the carriage herself. It was her
carriage, which she pretended was out of commission in the old barn.
And, she ran over Henrietta Wainscot on the night of March the 8th! J'Accuse!

One word: Applesauce. Not on his back, but on his shoes. Uncle Burdock
would never look at a porkchop again.

Paisley Wilmington knew that the German ate bratwurst every morning for
his heart. But, as there was none in his stomach at the time of death, she
knew that he hadn't eaten any that day. So, she deduced that any man without
his daily bratwurst was in danger of doing something he didn't want to do.
The lack of pants on the Scandinavian jockey meant that he was doing wash
and had no spare pants. Putting two and two together, they arrested the

There it is, folks! Your ticket to a better life. What are mysteries?
Works of art? Beautiful constructions where form and function latch together
for all eternity. Or are they something that any old hack can churn out
quicker than corn through my digestive system?

The latter, ladies and gentleman!

So, contact me through Del Berman and this blog. I'll hook you up. (As
I said, I have hundreds of these. We're a horse suit and I'm the man in
the rear!)

Your dreams await!

Monday, May 08, 2006

I'm Del Berman! I'm in charge now!

Hey, everyone! Del Berman here! And, I run Turbot Town Stories now!

Isn't that great?

I'm bringing back some old favorites (Cyril P.!) and some new fun times. (It's a surprise!)

I took over this goofball blog and now I'm gonna make it the best! Hold on to your Johnsons, kids!

Here we go!

Del Berman signing out...

Sunday, March 12, 2006

A Good Thing

Grey's may be closed. We may all be losing our jobs. We may all be losing our trailers. We may all end up at the bottom of Old Hagar's Swamp.


I can't think of anything. Feel free to leave messages with things we can be happy about.

Friday, March 10, 2006

It's Official...

...and it hurts!

Grey's Prepared Beef plant is officially closing down. All jobs are being outsourced to Guam or somewhere similar.

The entire town of Turbot (with a few exceptions) will be out of work on May 21st of this year.

Good luck to everyone!


M & A

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

One Tired Man...Still Swimming

If there's anything I love about Turbot, it's Old Hagar's Swamp.

I've been swimming in that for six days now. I'm covered in lichen, detritus and just general filth. I've been coughing a lot and my lungs are clogged with life. Beautiful life. But, I'm swimming again. People say I wasn't going to be swimming after my Ba**s went south in the Marinate. Bull stank!

I'm swimming! And, they're closing down and they're done! And, I'm swimming!

Anyone who wants to join me...please do so. I start at 6AM and go until I become so tired and phlegmy that I can swim no more. I can't wait to see you.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Recipe Time

Well, it looks like Grey's is shutting down. So, all of the unemployed in the area are going to need to eat light for a while...

I've got a recipe for you.

Take a box of tortilla shells, some cheese that you get in the mail and a can of Spaghettios.

Warm up the shells and cook the Spaghs. Make sure the Spaghs bubble lightly before you sprinkle in some shredded cheese. Then, take the shells out of the oven.

Crack the shells in half. Spread the Spagh & cheese mix on the shell half. Salsa, if available.


It is wonderful. And cheap. Sour cream is a nice touch. Taco meat can be used, if, once again, available.


Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Three Cheers For Me!

I'm Melvin!

It doesn't get better than me!


Friday, February 24, 2006

MC Hammer to Play Free Concert On Top of My Trailer Home!

Free Tonight! At My Trailer!

MC Hammer! It will be "his prerogative" to play a concert for you!

Show starts at 8PM.

Free refreshments! Just knock on my trailer door and I will answer.

If no one answers, yell for Wally! I'll come a'runnin'!

After the show, I'll be setting out my collection of lawn chairs and we can sit down and talk for a while. I've been really cleaning up the place nice so I think you should have a good time.

Maybe you could come over again tomorrow night? Whitney might be here...

I can't wait to see you. Bring a friend. Please?

Monday, February 20, 2006

We Apologize

for the infrequent number of posts over the last week.

Things have been going very strangely here in Turbot.

We'll get back to you soon.


Monday, February 13, 2006

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Thursday, February 09, 2006


More news as it comes in. But, we were told today that Mr. Grey and Family have accepted an offer for the purchase of the plant.

We've not been told who the purchaser is our what the future of the plant is but we've got out fingers crossed.

Until then, we will try to continue "business as usual" here at the blog. We've got some real wisecrackers comin' up. Stay tuned!

- Marlene & Arthur

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Super Bowl Fun-Day

Well, everyone, it’s a Red Letter Day in Turbot. Because we are going to have a Super Bowl Party!!!!

Oh boy!!!

I’m not much of a fan myself but, come on, aren’t those commercials great? I wish they’d cancel the game and just show those commercials. They never let you down.

Arthur’s anxious because he’s a big fan of Pittsburgh so the trailer is on edge. “They’d better win, Marlene!” He tells me with that tone. What a goofball! In fact, the first of the guests are arriving (mostly folks from our floors at Grey’s) right now. I’m waving “Hello!” to them as you read this. We are going to have a great time.

Pizza, check. Beer and pop, check. Nachos, check. Assorted veggie platter, no way! This ain’t any Figure Skating Party! (By the way, have you been watching Skating with Celebrities? We love it.) And, when the fourth quarter hits…Beef Jerky and Banana Splits! This will be the best party yet!

What about next year’s, you say? Who knows? Who knows?

Uh-oh! I hear Arthur arguing with Berns and his wife. Already! Did the game start? These sports rivalries are so exciting when you know what’s going on!

All right, everyone! Enjoy the game! I’ll talk to you soon.

P.S. If YOU are reading this (you know who YOU are), forget about it. You can’t come. Arthur does own a bat and his temper can flare. Coppish?

Friday, February 03, 2006

Alyssa's Final Journal Entry


Alyssa here.

Sorry. It’s been a while. I imagine you've all read about what went on over Christmas. Tim and I are very sorry for any trouble we may have caused. We actually thought we’d be back sooner than we were. There was a mishap. Unfortunately, I can’t really go into it.

I’m here today to say good-bye. Good-bye to Turbot. Good-bye to Grey’s Prepared Beef. Good-bye to Alyssa’s Journal. Don’t worry. I’m not getting morbid on you. Every thing I was complaining about in the past year is gone. Everything that was dragging me down and taking the energy from me is unimportant nonsense. I’m gone.

I have sold my trailer. I got a decent price for it. I’m going to use the money and travel because I can no longer remain in the town of Turbot. It is falling apart. Grey’s is being sold. I’m sure you all know that. Who is it going to? Who is taking the reins of the town’s only business? I’ve no idea. But, this area isn’t so great for keeping businesses open once they get sold off. And, frankly, I don’t really want to move to Guam. Although, I may visit.

The whole feeling of this town is just plummeting. That feeling that I used to have of being lost is everywhere now. I see it in every face. I’ve given my two weeks. The new tenants move in when my time underground ends. I’ve sold them most of my things. I’m keeping a backpack full of things. I plan on collecting as I go along. I feel free.

I wish I could tell you what happened to me over the holiday. My eyes opened up. I saw past the beef and the petty backstabbing. I realized that working several stories underground is awful. I learned and saw what this town was like at the beginning. It would put you to shame to see what we’ve done to this beautiful place. Grey and his Prepared Beef can drop into the center of the earth as far as I’m concerned.

My hands are shaking as I write this. The things Tim and I did and saw. (No, none of it was sexual. (I feel gross even having to mention it but I know what many of you think. I don’t want to be in this gutter anymore.) My bridges aren’t just burning. I’ve destroyed them. If I fail, I fail knowing that I’ve done what I wanted to do. Have you ever seen Grey and his family? Mole People come alive. He cares about his family and nothing else. He would seal us all underground if it made him a decent profit. Maybe that’s the American Way but I think it sucks. I’ve seen more. I’ve seen better. People deserve better. Every single one. Not just a few lucky folks sitting up top. That’s garbage.

Good-bye everyone. Maybe I’ll start my own blog. Keep an eye out. Live a good life.

Monday, January 30, 2006

Mulletville Main Street, Part 2

Let me finish my story.

So, they had the subway car going. From the factory to the empty field. Well, after all that time had passed and all that money was saved, people were pretty excited about the whole thing. Wondering what it would look like and all that.

Turns out they didn’t have nearly as much money as they thought they did. They couldn’t construct a real Main Street in the middle of that field anymore than I could fly to the moon by eating a lot of beans. The townspeople were pretty wrecked. Another 10 years? 20? The Chamber of Commerce had no idea. At first, cries of “Corruption!” went up. There was no corruption. They just didn’t have the money. So, there was a compromise.

You remember I told you that the missing building had a huge, huge room where all the train loading and unloading was done? Well, you should. Here’s what they did… They built the Main Street. Underground. They used the empty space that was the platform. Imagine this: You step off the subway and there is a lovely sidewalk, capped with bushes and a couple of big fake trees.

There’s a sign right outside the doors reading “MAIN STREET”. It points to an archway in the far corner of the platform. Directly in front of you, there is no longer a huge platform. There is a big, fake brick wall stretching up three stories. If you listen carefully, you can hear the sounds of people having a good time.

Follow the arrow. Walk through that archway onto “MAIN STREET”. Well, they’d done it. It was a big city Main Street with two lanes of traffic, fire hydrants, and an intersection with a stoplight. And, the stores. Everything they wanted was there. A huge department store stretching up three floors. “BARNEY’S DELI”. A video store and all of it. Everything you’d want to see on the Main Street. And, there was always the sound of hustle and bustle. People talking, cars beeping, dogs barking.

Except, of course, it was all fake. The stores were well-arranged storefronts. The noises were piped in through fake rocks. There were a couple of scooters that drove up and down the street to simulate traffic but no cars. People could walk down the street and peer into the department store windows with their constantly changing window displays and promises of big sales. But, they couldn’t go in. Oh, the Chamber hired people to walk around just beyond the displays. You could see shadows and the occasional person but you could not pin them down.

The deli window was filled with meats and signs selling meats. In between all of this, there was a counter that shadows passed across. There was even a bologna smell piped past everyone.

They hired someone to stand at the newsstand and yell headlines. But, none of the magazines or newspapers was real. The stoplight worked perfectly. A traffic cop would give you a ticket if you fooled around. A fake ticket.

At the holidays, the street would be lined and covered appropriately. As the day progressed, an enormous light would pass across the street. Streetlamps would flash on when the light was gone.

At first, the Street stayed open 24 hours. After a time, it was 9AM-10PM all week. It was just easier. A voice would announce that Main Street was closing and people would hop back on the train. Although, it was tough to pull some people away.

The whole thing was like a full-scale version of those Dickens’ Villages things that people have. You know, you can peer in the windows of the Toy Store and see little people at little counters or playing with toys but none of it’s real. The Mulletville Main Street was a giant fake Village. Every building you looked in promised something beyond what you could see. Nothing was there but they did what they could.

You think all this is lame? A bunch of hicks wasting all their money on an unreachable dream. Well, you’d be surprised. For the first six months, people used to flock down here whenever they could. They had a hot dog stand and an actual restaurant down there so folks could eat. Lunch was big for the Marshmallow People. They’d window shop and have a nice slice of ham at the “MAIN STREET DINER”. People were thrilled by it. It was almost everything they wanted from a Main Street. For a time, it was wonderful.

We always have hoodlums, don’t we? Or curious people who screw things up. Kids started sneaking in after 10PM and spraying graffiti on the storefronts. At first, everyone thought it was local color. But, then they started spraying rude words and things like “U PEOPLE SUCK!” That made a lot of people stop going. “We’re tired of it” That’s what they’d say. But, I think people felt less and less safe.

Then, there was Norman Marn. He worked in packaging down at the plant. They always say that he was a bit of a dope. Always doing his own thing and usually screwing stuff up for everyone. Well, it was Christmas time and the workers had made a beautiful display for the holiday. People from all over town were there that evening. That was when they made it snow. The year they made it snow. They’d turn up the air down there to get you to see your breath. That was great. Anyway, the display was wonderful. Big ornaments and snowmen. A manger. Giant Santa waving back and forth. A thousand lights. Their best ever. Really.

Everyone was watching the display, enraptured. Then, one of the background “Shadows” began getting closer. At first, people thought it was anew effect. Then, ugly old Norman Marn stumbled in. He was a little drunk and quite a jerk. Somehow he’d gotten behind there and was inside. People were shocked. At first, they thought that Marn worked there and was going to do something. No, he didn’t. No, he wasn’t. He went to the store door and pulled it open. No one knew it was supposed to open. Some folks say that Marn unlocked it. Others say that he broke part of the fa├žade. Regardless, he waved everyone in.

There was a pause. Then, the crowd flooded in. They found the storage room. The break room. The employee bathroom. But, there was no more store. You can imagine that even though the people knew there was nothing there that they were very disappointed. Some people broke things. Most just never came back. By Christmas, only a few visitors stopped by Main Street.

Six months later, Main Street closed down. The employees got thrown out of work. Some went back to the plant. Others left. Marn “Quit” his job and no one ever saw him again. Main Street began its decay. The dream was over.

This was twenty years ago. As far as I know, no one has been down there in a decade. When the marshmallow plant closed, everyone but a few of us left. I don’t know that the trailer park people even know about Main Street. The train sure doesn’t run anymore. But, it’s still there. Still able to take people to Main Street. A potent memory for some. I don’t know. I’m too old to ferret it out. Let some young fritter explore. I just want to rest.

Well, that’s my story. I think Ray is up next. His story may not be as good but he’s a nice guy. So humor him.


Thursday, January 26, 2006

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Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Mulletville Main Street, Part 1

By Jake

You want an old fun story? Here’s one. Although, it may not be all that fun. But, anyways, here it is.

When the had the old marshmallow plant up, people in the town got a bit of a hanker-on to have a Main Street. This was when people were living in the houses. Yes, the ones we’re still in. But, most folks are in those trailers now and, God Bless ‘Em, I think they smell. That doesn’t preclude the fact that sometimes I might smell but those tings have that sanitary smell you get in public lavatories. You know that smell? Yeah, you know that smell. I can see it in your eyes. Anyway, the workers at the marshmallow plant wanted to be more cosmopolitan.

Yes, yes. Turbot, or Mulletville back then, does have a “main street”. It has the general store, the video store and the office of the Turbot Tribune. Hicksville 100%. Absolute hicks laugh at it. People who live in the smallest Appalachian towns blink and miss “Main Street”. The Mulletvillians wanted something bigger. They wanted a full-on New York City/ Chicago-style street. Now, I know there are a lot of them in the big cities. They wanted a generic one. Ya know, a block long with a busy four lane street. All the buildings would be three or four stories high. Department stories, pizzeria, delis, newsstands. You know, you’ve been to a city. They wanted the light, the hustle &, frankly, they wanted some bustle in there. They knew that their confectionaries went around the world so why do they have to be secluded.

“Let’s get in some of the big department stores. We’ll put a Harrods in Mulletville! Eight stories high with a permanent Christmas department, the biggest food court in the U.S. (with sushi), a whole floor devoted to shoes and more expensive chocolates and nougats in gold boxes than you can shake your wang at! We’ll have a Kosher deli with meat, meat, and meat! We’ll have a Chinese restaurant, an Italian eatery and a Greek dinner hutch! There will be a video store next to the coffee shop and a bakery with fresh bread 24-hours a day! We want a Main Street. And, we will pay for it!”

They weren’t goofin’ your noodle. They were going to pay for it. For 15 years, the Chamber of Commerce set aside cash and donations towards the Main Street Project. The Government would match some of the funds and so would the owners of the factory. Those puffy, white hotshots thought that they could expand production and put a store on the Street. Tricky, crafty fellows. You should have seen the people’s faces light up. Once a year, they would have a get-together towards the construction. They would review budgets and pertinents. Each year they got a little closer. It was a thrilling time. Mulletville’s prime.

Now, I know what you’re thinking. How in the hell are they gonna pull this off? This sounds like an ass-headed venture if ever there was one. Yes and no. They had one big advantage. You remember that the marshmallow, now prepared beef, plant was once used for arms manufacturing during WWII? Well, it was. And, there were actually two plants. The one that still stands and the one that used to be in the large field where all the trailers are. It was knocked down after the war for mysterious, government-men reasons but the other was kept up.
What the folks of Mulletville knew was this: There was a connecting underground subway that would bring “Classified” things from one building to another. They are only a mile apart so it wasn’t a long ride but… If you go down to the 5th sub-floor of Grey’s Prepared Beef and you go all the way to the west wall. There is a door. Just a door. An ordinary door. I don’t even know if it’s still there. They’ve probably walled it up, sealed it off. If you went through the door, there was an enormous warehouse room. That’s where they kept the “Super Secret” things that they did. Germ warfare? Kill-em-all explosives? Possibly. I don’t know. At the far end of this room, there is a track. A subway track leading deep into the underground darkness. It went under Mulletville and wound up at a long, high room directly under the basement of the now-torn down building. This is what made it possible.

They would get a subway train. One or two cars. It didn’t have to be a big one. People didn’t mind crowding in. They would dig a separate tunnel down to the 5th Sub-Floor room in the marshmallow factory. Now, all the employees would have instant and easy access to the train that would take them to Main Street. On weekends, some people would walk there but you’ll notice one thing… The houses are on the other side of the factory. On the east side. The trailers and the now-gone building were on the west. It was far more convenient, and far more cosmopolitan, for them to take the subway to there beautiful Downtown.

So, they had it worked out. Well, that part of it was.

What I’m going to do is take a break and use the can. When I get back to you, you’ll learn about Mulletville and their Main Street. What really happened in The Little Town That Thought It Could. Bye now. Stay safe

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Dr. Lipton Montgomery here, folks!

Hello, everyone!

I've decided to start the Old Fun Stories Reports I've promised you all in a slightly different way.

My thought had been to give you detailed descriptions of the five elderly gentlemen who told me all about "Fun Town". Instead, I've done something that is far more interesting.

Each of the men over the next few weeks will be telling an "old, fun story" of their own. Something from their life or about the town that they think (and I think) represents them well. I believe this will give you a better intro to the fellows than all my chatter ever could. It's more fun, too.

So, on Tuesday, Jake will be regaling you with a story. About what? I don't know. He hasn't sent it to me or told it to me yet. But, it'll be good.

Stay tuned. Tuesday - The Stories Begin.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

I, Rene Descartes, am writing this to regale you with an adventure I have just taken part in in the year of our Lord sixteen hundred and forty five. An adventure, indeed. It was more than that, so much more. This is such a wondrous time in our history, but these things I’m sure you know. The story’s the thing here, my friend! Pick up a daily parchment if you need updating. &, do I have an adventure for you? Yes, I can say I do. So, let’s get right to it. This man can wait no longer.

My 48th year & I was strong of body & trim of mustache with a beard whose bushiness matched the density of my mind. I had published numerous scientific, philosophic & theologistic pieces that kept me in the public eye & which, if I do say so myself, kept people thinking & wondering, pushing their minds further & further along that path of darkness & confusion into the light. Well, this all comes at a time when I had a couple of new ideas & new theories, experiment was a top priority of mine whether it be physical or mental, which were taking me over. But, I see that I am surpassing myself in narrative thrust, you don’t know where I was or how I was living. I haven’t even given you a proper description...Oh, when one wants to tell a story, one can be literally dragged away. Let us set these things aside so I can relate my tremendous adventure. Will you please join me at the next paragraph?

Well, I was of average height for my times, relatively thin & sprightly, even at my age, & that’s not including my mind, with dark hair, dark eyes & an exquisite symmetrical combination of mustache & beard. My teeth were as well as any member of the nobility’s ever since I had taken up brushing them weekly with a small brush. My disposition, I will try to be as honest as I can, tended towards an isolation. I had, by this point in my life, been swarmed by numerous multitudes of Our Lord’s creations. Fought in several wars, lived in the lovely & crowded Paris loveliness. I have spent so much time with noise & the hustle-bustle of humanity that I now find I keep myself to myself in the main. My manservant of 20 years, trusty Henri, was my closest companion & that was only because we lived in the same house.

How are we to describe Henri? If you’ll forgive the aside...He was several years younger than I, wiry, but I think without the same mind as mine. A man suited perfectly to the trade, as I think God must put us all in our proper places & positions, which he was given: to be my manservant. Lighter hair than mine, his eyes were hazel & his face was free from hair, which I teased him about but he claimed was his own business. A hard working man who was there at a moment’s notice to give me a towel, powder my social wig or hand me another bottle of wine during the endless hours of writing in my bedroom.

Which is where I did all of my writing, at least as much as I could. With a fire glowing, wine & cheese by my side & myself tucked under covers with a tremendous amount of quill & paper. This bedroom, which I had occupied since the house was acquired, had been the snuggest of all my writing desks as it were, making for such interesting theories which I could right another book about. I recommend to all those who write in the bedroom to get oneself a canopy bed. Something with a lovely covering over it. A hazy silkiness adds to the feeling that you’re in a wonderfully enclosed space. Add the curtains on all sides & you are there. The outside world, or at least the world inside of your bedroom, can be seen but you are a caterpillar cocoon’d to do your work.

An adventure can only be put off for so long & now I find myself further away than before. The bedroom is part of my house, which I have lived in for several years now, right outside of that lovely, unfettered, generous, holy, remarkable city-town of Holland. One can peak his mind in such a place. Its endless & lovely streets filled with such a large variety of people, the rich, the poor & those hard working folk somewhere in between. So many & varying places of business abut against charming houses, hovels & otherwise. You have never seen as many vendors of as many vendable items as out on that Main Street where even the sewer flows past us & smells like wine. Buns, rolls, breads aplenty, cheeses of a 1,000 varieties, leather, buttons, pastries, meats, shoes, fruits & vegetables, nuts that will crack themselves, sweet & glorious candies, one man sells earthenware crocks, one woman has alchemical doo-dadery which would do better in Portugal or Spain but she does allright, kittens & puppies, I do not tell lies when I tell you that I could go on for many more pages on our illustrious street vendors, with their splinter-wheel carts lined right on the edge of the King’s Memorial Sewer, making & plying constant worthy trades. But the vendors could exhaust one, when there are so many other wonderful sights in Holland: the mansions & castles of our smartest & wisest, the hospital with the adjacent ground of the Holland School of Higher Learning, both so large & full of learned men that I like to liken, to my good friend Dr. Johann Bjornmanian, all the visionary intelligence walking about during the day to the illuminatory & vibrant lighting of the night lamps which line the city’s streets.

I guess, looking back, my finest friend, I have many colleagues but he is a friend, would be Johann, an intelligent man, rather short & without facial paraphernalia or cranium hair except for two strips which arched over his ears like little gray rainbows. A good, wise man & an expert in the brain & general anatomy. He was 10 years my senior but, if anything, a little more sprightly than I. -The constant energy of my teaching & surgical room, he would say. Medicine had gone through so much in his time, as we would talk over the coffee bean drink he loved & a dinner. -Every 4 or 5 years I find myself updating my entire curriculum. -Wonderful things are afoot this century, Johann. I’m surprised it’s only every 4 or 5 years. -Yes. Ha! I feel like Adam at times. Cataloguing Creation. Johann is a fine man & I know he is extremely glad to take part in the upcoming adventure, which happened only a little while ago.

Leaving Holland, I bet you had forgotten we were there, one enters the hills & glades beyond. For a while, if you could walk backwards from Main Street into the rural area, the lights would still shine & the noise would be audible. In a city like ours, there is always some noise if only the lamps flicker or the sewer’s flow. But, the noise dies away &, at least heading towards my place, the lights disappear over the crest of a green hill with a small brown road stretching across it. The city is gone although forever within my walking distance, a lovely road flanked by trees & woods populated with all kinds of tremendous animals &, probably, one or two people. After a 1/4 mile, little roads weave in & between the trees, stretching to houses, many 1,000 times larger than the one I inhabit & epically beautiful. There is even a small parish Church down one of these.

The house, which Henri & I inhabit, is about two miles outside of town. Wind past trees & you enter a large field with a single walking path to the front door. Many houses have paths for carriages & stables but Henri & I prefer to walk. It suits our constitution. There is space all the way around the manor, green grass dotted with the occasional tree. But, we are, as all out here are, surrounded by these woods. The house had been built 30 years ago in this natural clearing. The back yard stretches back for about 500 feet & then becomes woods that fall away on a rather steep incline into a beautiful horizon from which I can see the sunset from my windows, or the yard, every night. At the time our adventure begins, I had never really been back in those receding woods so, I guessed, anything could be back there.

At this rate, we will never reach my house, which is larger than the average Holland home but not as large as the Prince’s summer home or the hospital. Allow me to give my first rendering of the place.

Done in the early 17th Century Holland style in a lovely white. Made from strong wood & two stories high, two high stories high. Spacious rooms & an indoor plumbing facility, which we rarely used. My bedroom on the second floor, south corner, & Henri’s nearby. A spacious dining room & elegant entranceway. Three guest suites & 25 windows. No basement & no attic. 18 steps leading to the second floor & two leading into my Master Suite & three dropping you into the backyard. Three main balconies on the front of the house & three on the back, six in all. My bedroom had two, one on each side, front & back. Sort of a rectangle with bulges at both ends. The large dining room below me & a second Master Suite on the other end with a spacious & underused banquet room. I acquired this house through the goodwill of my fine friend, Dr. Harvey*, whom I worked with on many occasions & who treated me to dinner here on numerous nights. When he & his wife left for London, where because of his teaching there & his age he decided to leave the house for someone because he didn’t think he’d ever come back, I found myself, with Henri, the sole proprietors of the estate -for the purpose of continued research- & I continue that research. Free rent & I get all the rest of my sundries from sales & commissions of my works & several points of royal patronage, you shall encounter one of these fine nobles soon. So, I am probably a little more well off than your average person but not as well off as, say, the King of Spain.

*Editors Note: Dr. William Harvey discovered the general circulation of the blood. In 1628, he published De Motu Corids et Sanguinis in Animalibus (On the Motion of the Heart and of Blood in Animals). From 1618 until his death in 1657, he taught in England. While there is no actual evidence of Harvey and his wife having a ‘summer home’ in Holland, that doesn’t mean they couldn’t have. Harvey would have been around 60 when Descartes relates this, which was very old for men in the 17th century. It could be absolutely true that he wouldn’t be able to make the journey anymore.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

A Post From Marlene

Happy Sunday!

Arthur & I are spending the day today installing a brand-new antenna on top of our trailer. The NFL playoffs are on and Arthur got real rowdy last year because we couldn’t see them. Who can afford the satellite thing? We sure can’t.

We’ve taken some old metal pieces and some hi-test tinfoil and soldered them into a large pointy mess. Arthur says that it is sure unsightly but it should attract the reception that we need. “I want those games, Marlene!” he says. A lot. And loudly. So, I’m not going to stop him.

Luckily, reception should be helped by the fact that the Pucketts hauled up stakes and left sometime during the middle of the night last week. One morning, we all set off for the plant together. The next morning, there is a large, empty, burnt space and more scattered garbage around it then you’d imagine three healthy people could whip up. Well, we always used to say that they were overachievers. I guess this proves it, in a way.

The Pucketts are actually the third trailer to leave in mysterious, dark circumstances since Christmas. (Hopefully, Mama Miller and Nana George won’t be leaving soon. The Patricks are living over there now. They can’t face another eviction.) I guess everyone’s starting to climb out onto the edge what with the Plant being sold soon and all. Can’t say as I blame them. Arthur and I are just going about our daily business, trying to pretend as if everything’s normal. Although, it did get a little rough ignoring the Pucketts moving out at 4AM the other night but we are happy in Turbot. We don’t want to go.

Oh by the way, we hope you’ll like Dr. Lipton Montgomery IV’s series of posts. He found out some things about our town and the area that he, frankly, won’t tell us until he posts them. Should be great. Hopefully…

Regardless, I can hear Arthur climbing down. I have to fiddle with the TV now. If we’ve got a picture, it should be a great day.

With love,

Marlene Yurvis

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Old Fun Stories - The Introduction

Dr. Lipton Montgomery IV here, folks. I’m glad you’ve decided to join me. This should be fun.

Here we go…

Today’s entry is an introduction. I spent several days in the Old Diner sitting with five old men who used to know the town of Turbot as Terranville. It hasn’t been Terranville since the marshmallow factory closed but they still refuse to call it Turbot. What you will be reading in my weekly entries are the stories these men told about the town they lived in and what it became during that vague period in-between Terranville and Turbot.

The old men called it Fun Town. But, it may never have existed.

Read on…

Imagine a long, two-line road lined with trees. The yellow line is solid double, solid and dashed but, most of the time, it’s dashed. The trees are tall and strong. Leaves are turning brown and red, although a few remain green. The branches are baring themselves. The leaves drop quickly all along the ground. You can see which stretches of road are rarely touched by the amounts of leaves spread around. When you plow through scattered piles that crackle and whoop up all around you, you’re in a rather (more) desolate area of the Route.

Every couple miles you’ll see a warning that the speed limit is going to drop. Slow down and the trees vanish. Sometimes you’ll fly through a town, sometimes it’s a natural clearing or rest stop, sometimes there’s an actual metropolitan area. But, mainly, things are really quiet.

When the road opens up and the sky comes out for Terranville (Turbot), things are still pretty quiet. You won’t see a lot of buildings; most homes are off on side roads, or many people. There’s a large, strange green, triangular building on the south side. Pass through some woods and you’ll slope down to Lake Schulman, which the locals’ll do some fishing on. On the north side is the “Rest Stop” all the signs and arrows have led you to. A large, silver circular building, with an overhang that has a gutter stretching all the way around it. The overhang, depending upon the time of day, lent a strange, thick shadow within the restaurant.

In the space beyond the restaurant, there is an old, decaying building that, apparently, used to be a hotel. But, more about that later.

Inside the diner, things are pretty standard except they’re circular. Two entrances, one on the west side and one on the east. The layout is constructed from three circles. Along the edge of the diner are booths. Perfectly spread out along the whole circumference, with the exception of the doors. Then, there is the counter (after a little circle between booths and counter) which has stools lined up all the way around with four spots for the waitress, Darla, to exit. Between the counter and the center is Darla’s strolling space. All the accouterment necessary for running a good diner was tucked under the counter or in the little refrigerator or in “special” nooks. Then, one would reach the center. Where Ronny cooks. A completely enclosed space except for one door that Ronny locked behind him. Two holes in the wall that flew open and ejected the food. Unless Ronny wanted to see you, he didn’t get seen. No one ever really saw in there (although mythological speculation abounds) and Ronny wouldn’t let me in so this is a rather strange area in an already strange town.

The two days I was there there was never a slew of customers. In fact, the main visitors were the five gentlemen I talked with. Cars pulled up, people stopped in for a quick bite and then left. I was worried that there would be moments when Darla wouldn’t be able to handle it but it was well taken care of. 6-8, 6 days a week. I don’t envy them.

I explained to Ronny and Darla that I’d be asking these men to tell stories. They didn’t seem to mind. Well, actually, they did mind, but, when I’d given them $---- each, they allowed it. Provided it didn’t interfere with their customers or their running of the diner.

So, on October 20, at 7:30 AM, I sat with these five gentlemen and discussed their lives, the stories they knew and, more specifically, what this area was before it was Turbot.

Next time, we will meet the men. Their elaborate stories of Fun Town shall begin.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

A Memo from Grey's Prepared Beef Managers to the Workers

Hello, Workers.

This is Barbara. Most of you don't know me but I am one of the Assistant Managers in the Plant. I work on the First Floor, near Marketing. I have been asked to post this memo on your charming blog in regards to the main refrigerator in the Cafeteria, which is located on one of the underground floors.

I had a look at the refrigerator in question at it is appalling. Forgive me if I sound rude and I'm not singling anyone in particular out here but all of you people will be requested during your shift tomorrow to, one by one, look at the filth that is the workers' doing.

The refrigerator is filled with little worms. They seem to be scurrying up the inside and leaving their dead (or dying) in the freezer. It has now become some sort of Worm Graveyard. They remain forever frozen awaiting revivification.

Like I've said, we are not blaming anyone in particular but you people need to know that when workers are filthy, you attract all sorts of filthy creatures. It's a wonder we don't have rats running throughout the factory with the way the workers (not you specifically) spread their filth across everything.

I don't know the way the people who work here live but it's certainly not the way I do. We found a six month old tostada crammed behind the filthy appliance and the wall. We know it's no one from the above-ground floors because we've never seen each other eat a tostada and cram it behind the fridge.

Again, this is just a general call to keep a closer eye on your food. Mr. Grey has discussed taking away the refrigerator and, possibly, all "food privileges". Maybe the new owners will be less stringent on the decaying filth that the workers bring to cram in their mouths or maybe, as is more likely, they'll close this hole down and leave you all to swim in offal in the privacy of your own home.

Regardless, when the company gets sold, I make a cool $150,000 so do what you want. I could care less.


Barbara Schwarz,
Ass. Manager

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Castanet & Bongo!

Super Heroes for a New World! Castanet & Bongo! Their adventures will be coming your way sooner than you can imagine!

With their charming & evil cast of colorful characters, such as The Apocalypse Mistress, The Transgender Warrior, Pepe Villa, Bad Man and so many others, they will make you shake in fear and excitement.

Turbot Town Stories apologizes for the number of Coming Soon... posts this year. Things will actually appear soon.

Trust us.

Friday, January 06, 2006

Bleeding is a "Cyril P. Pick of the Month!!"

I, Cyril P. Drathmoor, movie reviewer for the masses, do hereby declare that Bleeding is an excellent source for reviews on some of the finest pieces that the Land of Entertainment has to offer.

If you are one of "the masses", use the link to your right and enjoy.

I Charge You! Go Now!

Good night, America.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

An Important Announcement from Dr. Lipton Montgomery IV

Everyone, listen up!

I have finally finished my intensive survey of Folk Stories across America. It's been eight years in the making and it will make Thomas Lombardo III's previous study look as obsolete as the original McDLT technology from the 1980's.

Why do you want to know this?, you ask yourself. Let me tell you... Turbot! That's why. I have spent two solid weeks with the five old men who hang out at the Turbot Diner on the Rural Route, the round, grey building next to the vacant lot. And, the stories they have told me about your town would make a fat whore blush, if you'll pardon the colloquialism. (As a folk story collector, I do tend to let my colloquial dangle in the most embarrassing places.)

Beginning next week, I'll be starting an in-depth look into the history of your town. Weather permitting. I think you'll learn a lot. Laughing, crying and possibly stark, raving terrificness will be the order of the day!

Stay tuned! The Old Fun Stories of Turbot begin soon.

Dr. Lipton Montgomery IV,
Folk Story Ethnologist

Monday, January 02, 2006

We don't punish enough whippersnappers!

Mr. Miller here, readers.

I just wanted to shove my two cents in your face and wave it around for those of you who may not have heard me on earlier occasions.

It's about those two punks who went missing at Christmas: the kid and that woman. I hate 'em. It was so cold and snowy. Why in the hell would you want to run away? What would possess you? Having no brains, possibly? Being inconsiderate young flim-flams? Why would you pull that sort of flim-flammery on the honest, hard-working people of Turbot, in particular Mr. Warren G. Miller, on the happiest day of the year?

Yes, what about me in particular? "Mr. Miller, you have to help us look! You have to help us look!" I'd love to help you shut up is what I'd love to do. I said it was too cold and that God would sort them out. The looks you people gave me! I've been in my trailer almost as long as John Turbot! I deserve some respect and, as I sit down to a beautiful Loin dinner, I don't need your scorn. The walls are thin in my trailer and I can feel your looks burning through the old aluminum. Knock it off!

Those rapscallions should be placed over knees and walloped within an inch of their lives. Not mollycoddled like veal! String 'em up and teach 'em a lesson about inconveniencing taxpayers, I say! Then, they will learn a little something about right and wrong. And, I can celebrate my holidays in peace.

Barring that, I want the details on what they got up to when they were missing. I like my stories as hot as the next guy! Hotter even! Give it to me! Or shut up.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Happy New Year from Marlene & Arthur!

From us to you...

May your 2006 be the most wonderful year you've ever had.

Thank you for spending time with us over this past year. We hope you continue to enjoy our company in the coming months.


Marlene & Arthur Y