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"Where she at?" Marvin said, pushing the gun against my back.

"Lucille!" I called out.

The house was quiet.

"She's probably asleep. The fever," I explained.

"Gimme those fuckin lectrolytes." Marvin grabbed the Duane Reade bag and bounded upstairs in three strides.

I took the Steuben penguin off the credenza and rushed quietly after him. He was coming out of my bedroom when I reached the second floor.

"Man, where the fuck—"

I threw the flightless, crystal waterfowl as hard as I could and leaped down the stairs.

I heard his body hit the floor, so I went into the kitchen to fix myself some cereal. I like Smart Start, because it doesn't have a lot of simple carbs. Sometimes I mix in a little muesli. It was a special occasion, sort of, so I used my favorite bowl, the one that flares out dramatically at the rim. It looks like an upside down bowler hat.

Halfway through my snack, Marvin stumbled in, a chunky shard of penguin lodged deep into his right eye. He pointed his gun listlessly in my general direction.

"You ain't have no daughter," he said. A fluid that was maybe tears, maybe vitreous humour, trickled from his exploded eye.

"I'm so sorry, Marvin. I had to make something up. I thought you were going to kill me."

"Man, I don't kill fuckers," he said. "Just jack rides. Why you gotta pluck a nigga's heartstrings and shit with that shit? That shit's serious. My own baby boo almost died of the salmonella."

I nodded sympathetically, pulling a lopsided grimace to dislodge some chewed-up cereal from my between my cheek and gums.

"Oh, Marvin," I said between bites, "I'm so sorry."

I gripped the rim of the bowl and prepared to Oddjob this lowlife nigger's head off.

Date Written: April 01, 2005
Author: qualcomm
Average Vote: 3.6875

04/8/2005 Partytime (2): Well, in looking-up vitreous humor I learned something.
04/8/2005 The Rid: Oh, boy. I don't know whether to laugh, cry or shake my head in disgust. Must consider heavily.
04/8/2005 Dylan Danko (3): My own baby boo almost died of the salmonella
04/8/2005 TheBuyer: You lowballing cocksuckers.
04/8/2005 Jimson S. Sorghum (4): I agree, Buyer.
04/8/2005 qualcomm (5): normally i'd probably 4 this, but i need to correct for erroneous votes. it's different than the usual thing here, and there are a few good gags. i especially like how the narrator comes off as the bigger asshole for playing with marvin's feelings and shit.
04/8/2005 Dylan Danko: Fair enough. I thought about 4ing it but I was in a bad mood. Author, forgive me.
04/8/2005 Jimson S. Sorghum: Hey, Dylan: tooooo late, tooooo late, tooooo late
04/8/2005 Mr. Negative: Hey, somebody chastise Danko for voting because of externals and not based on the merits of the short. You cunts.
04/8/2005 Mr. Pony (4): Hey, I thought this was pretty funny.
04/8/2005 Mr. Pony: Hey, I left my comment window open for half an hour before posting it.
04/8/2005 Will Disney: and it worked? amazing!
04/8/2005 Dylan Danko: Jimson: Story of my fucking life. Mr. Neg: I enjoy your presence. Thank you for it.
04/8/2005 Will Disney (4): This narrator really doesn't seem to be very racially sensitive, unless of course he is black. But in that he still might not be very racially sensitive to white people although there isn't enough info on that point to make a call.
04/8/2005 Mr. Pony: Danko shouldn't have let his mood affect his vote, but he's been here a while; and as far as I know, voting based on how he's feeling at the moment wasn't his defining characteristic for the first couple of weeks he was on Acme.
04/8/2005 Front (5): Very funny. Read it again just now. Also a necessary corrective vote.
04/8/2005 Dylan Danko: Pony, weren't you breast feeding back then? Did you even exist? Um...no actually you didn't.
04/8/2005 Ewan Snow: I don't know. I didn't find this funny. There were a couple of good bits, like the "flightless, crystal waterfowl" and Oddjob. But the thing qualcomm mentions, about making the narrator seem like the real jerk, which I think was the overarching joke, fell flat for me. Also, the black-speak seems like it has been used a lot recently. Not to be F-ing PC, but it came off a little odd. It didn't add anything to the joke that I could tell, and felt forced, as if the author thought "because this is Acme and everybody knows it's cool, I'm gonna put in a black guy who speaks ebonics, and have my main character call him a nigger. Everyone knows it's ironic and shit, plus I'll make him sympathetic." Am I "off base"?
04/8/2005 Front: Yes. I thought it was casual. And funny. But I'm just another opinion.
04/8/2005 Ewan Snow: As are we all, Front. Did you mean "casual" as opposed to "forced"?
04/8/2005 Ewan Snow: The fact that the guy was going after "lectrolytes" was hossenpfeffer, though.
04/8/2005 John Slocum: He/she meant 'casual' like 'relaxed' or 'romantic.'
04/8/2005 qualcomm: i think he meant casual in the sense of chris penn's oft-repeated "it's casual," from the wild life
04/8/2005 anonymous: The narrator being the bigger asshole wasn't a joke, I just thought it would make an interesting reversal. It was simply an element of this compelling, morally complicated life drama I have unfolded before you. I chose to make the carjacker a black dude but his manner of talking wasn't a joke. It was a dialogue choice like any other. If you think his dialogue is supposed to be funny it's probably because you are all racists. I just made him talk the way I thought this black carjacker talks. The ebonics thing has been done before. I would say not nearly as much as the emotionally numb uncaring Easton Ellisy white guy. However, no one complains about that since most of you are all a bunch of similarly situated boring white guys. Sorry if that makes you feel uncomfortable. On the topic of the N word. That is something I struggled with at the last second -- taking it out and putting it in several times -- before deciding to leave it. It was true to this asshole white guy's character so I left it. I didn't put it in because I thought it would be "cool."
04/8/2005 Front: Sorry, typo - I meant causal.
04/8/2005 Streifenbeuteldachs (4): Funny. You need to work on your black speak though.
04/8/2005 John Slocum (3): some good things to enjoy here, but overall I didn't derive that much pleasure from this short. It's partly because I find the white guy's behavior (behavoir?)[yes, behavior!] to be poorly laid out, that is to say, it doesn't make sense to this reader. Why does he act the way he does?
04/8/2005 Ewan Snow: Easy, author. I'm not trying to be hyper-critical. I was just saying what I thought. First, by "overarching joke", I meant precisely "story reversal" so there's no disagreement there. And the ebonics doesn't make me "uncomfortable" in the least, I just thought it wasn't the most imaginative choice, and didn't add anything. Just my opinion and obviously others disagree.
04/8/2005 Ewan Snow (3):
04/8/2005 Dylan Danko: Other than QC, which one of you assholes lowballed this work of genius?
04/8/2005 Klause Muppet (4): Gosh, when did things have to make sense!?
04/8/2005 TheBuyer: Front, that typo just made my morning.
04/8/2005 TheBuyer (5): I really enjoyed this one, please pardon my 'cocksucker' from this morning, you're probably not cocksuckers. Probably.
04/8/2005 qualcomm: yes, author, you need to work on your black speak. you don't understand it the way i do. but enough about you, let's talk about my firm grasp of black speak...
04/8/2005 Ewan Snow: Hey, author, I changed my mind. After a re-read I appreciated several details and the quality of crafstsmanship in general a bit more. Though I'm pretty macho, I'm not so macho as to not admit when I'm wrong, at least every once in a while, or when I don't really care much either way. So I owe you a star. Grolsch guy?
04/8/2005 Dylan Danko: Firm grasp of black.
04/8/2005 Ewan Snow: qualcomm, what's that in aid of, specifically? Are you saying that's what I was saying? Also, I posted that last comment before I saw yours, though I guess that's not very relevant.
04/8/2005 qualcomm: i was mocking sbd
04/8/2005 Ewan Snow: I thought he was joking.
04/8/2005 qualcomm: then i'm really really sorry
04/8/2005 Ewan Snow: Don't apologize. Just change your underwear.
04/8/2005 TheBuyer: hey Streifenbeuteldachs, we were all talking about you in the third person yesterday as if you had gone away.
04/8/2005 Mr. Pony: Did you make a vacation?
04/8/2005 scoop: I know a lot of emotionally mute, morally vacant white guys and that's not how they throw stuff, either. Exhibits a certain lack of versimilidude.
04/8/2005 scoop (4): One star off for failing to capture white throwing.
04/8/2005 Mr. Pony: It must be really cool to be a white guy.
04/8/2005 TheBuyer: Not for us wasps, have to pretend to have some ethnicity like, "My background? Oh, I'm English, Irish, Welsh, Ukranian, Dutch, and a small part Swedish" when we should just be saying 'I come from a long line of honkeys.'
04/8/2005 Partytime: Man am I glad I 2*'d this. Yes glad glad glad. Alzo, I don't like the corrective voting thing--giving later opinions more weight.
04/8/2005 Litcube (4): Enjoyable story.
04/8/2005 The Rid (3): Kinda funny, not too inspired, though the Oddjob joke is above average. Woulda liked it better if this had stopped after the narrator described his upside down bowler hat cereal bowl.
04/8/2005 Mr. Pony: Is that your "white guilt" talking, Dinsey? Man, you white people say some crazy shit.
04/8/2005 Jon Matza (3): Above average writing but a pleasureless read for I MATZA. Too twisted/edgy, not funny enough for my druthers.
04/8/2005 Ewan Snow: Yeah, I agree. I changed my mind again. Author, I don't owe you a star anymore.
04/8/2005 Dick Vomit: This is racist, scoop.
04/8/2005 Jimson S. Sorghum: What, you chaps didn't like "flightless crystal waterfowl"? C'mon!
04/8/2005 Will Disney: Pony, you've internalized the feelings of the very people you oppress! Turn down the Pat Boone and come back to Earth, buddy.
04/8/2005 Ewan Snow: Yeah, I do like that, Jimson. Author, I owe you a star. For keeps this time.
04/8/2005 Litcube: Hah.
04/8/2005 Mr. Pony: So now you're telling me what to do? That's quite a burden, Disney!
04/8/2005 Will Disney: All I'm saying, Pony, is that I'm completely right in this case. K?
04/8/2005 Phony Millions (4): A solid 4, nigga.
04/9/2005 Mr. Pony: Completely *white*, you mean.