A Tale That’s Too Shitty


by Eric J Baker

It was the best of times, it was the worst of…

Hold on. My editor tells me that opening is taken already. That’s all right; I wasn’t married to it. The construction is passive and the comma should be a semi-colon anyway. I don’t know what rank amateur came up with that clunker, but I’m sure I would have fixed it on my second pass. I’ll start again after you take a moment to enjoy the pretty picture.


Humans of the future: Oil slick for clothing, pink hair, and designer booty.

Our world is on the cusp of epochal changes in medicine, energy, and transportation that were dreams of fantastical science fiction a mere 50 years ago. We are truly becoming a planetary society that, within 100 years, will have knifeless surgery, orbiting solar panels beaming down clean microwave power, and superconductors that produce almost no pollution and send magnetic trains cross-country in but a few hours. We will have all-purpose, shape-shifting, one-stop-shop electronic devices that eliminate the need for all other gadgets, and we will enjoy the clean air that comes about when nuclear fusion powers our cities and helps end the tumultuous era of fossil fuels. None of us will be there to experience it, but our youngest children might.

Ashton to Ashes


by James Killough

It hasn’t been a good year or so for my ideal younger man, Ashton Kutcher.  This breaks my heart because I do wish him all the best, in a concerned, fatherly way.  First came his split with Demi, then his stint on Two and a Half Men, a show he is being credited with killing, although I see that more as a kindly act of euthanasia; I agree with Charlie Sheen: TAAHM kinda sucks.  Now he has managed to outrage some members of the Indian community by appearing in “brown face” in an ad for PopChips, and he has been roasted alive on Twitter, a social media platform he in no small part helped to build.

This poses something of a conundrum for performers in general and the people who create material for them: at what point does satire become offensive and racist?  Are actors, comedians specifically, only allowed to appear as their race or, in the case of repeat-offender Sacha Baron Cohen, as something other than their real sexuality?

Yahoo! Can It Be Now?


by Eric J Baker

Dear Yahoo!,

I had a speech prepared about why I’m breaking up with you, but I’ll just let these They Might Be Giants lyrics do the talking for me: This is where the party ends. I can’t stand here listening to you… and your racist friend(s).

Love, Me.

They Might Be Giants, putting my thoughts to music since 1986.

OK, here’s the speech:

Something about the silver medalist appeals to me. I like Yahoo! better than Google. I like Pepsi better than Coke. If I ate at fast food joints, I’d probably like Burger King better than McDonald’s. But Yahoo! is fast becoming that self-destructive friend who pushes people away at the same time she cries about being lonely. She’s kinda pretty and has a lot to offer, but, frankly, she has fallen in with a really bad crowd.