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Chapter Two:

Yeah, so anyway, after the whole murder slash cannibalism thing my future-self didn't come around for a while until I was 14. I was at my locker after school. The halls had long emptied out and I was taking advantage of the privacy to smooch the photograph of Lady Di I had taped to the inside of the door. My tongue was tracing the hem of her skirt when I raised my eyes. There he was. He winced and reared back, holding his hands in front of his face in a way that seemed to indicate both mock horror and genuine revulsion.

"Dude, ever hear of Clearasil?"
"Yeah, It doesn't work," I said with defiance so philo dough thin that tears started to seep through. "My dermatologist has me on 50 migs of tetracylcine and topical Retin-A." I clicked my retainer.
"Ya, well anyway, hold the pepperoni, please! Ha, ha, ha!" He leaned into me as he laughed and touched me affectionately on the shoulder as if to make me his co-conspirator in a joke at my own expense. I stood there, unblinking, trying my best to look past him. He lit up a cigarette and offered me one.
"I don't smoke! Coach would kill me!"
"What's the diff, soccer season's over anyway?"
"No it isn't. Just because the school season is over doesn't mean we aren't doing dry land training and indoor. And don't forget about town-team," I replied snottily.

Tremors began in his face and moved to the rest of his body and soon he was in hysterics.
"I gotta tell ya kid. This soccer stuff and all this exercise ain't gonna mean a thing when you hit, say, 34. Trust me, you may as well start smoking now. You're not cut out for the long haul." My chin started to quiver. "Yes I am!" I blubbered, barely containing a wail of woe but not really knowing what he was talking about. "Aww, come on. No tears here please. Come on! Hey, listen, you got any weed on you? Let's go behind the auditorium and smoke a jay." "We can't smoke in the school" I whined. "Jesus Christ! Of course we can. I used to do it all the time. Fuck! What kind of a pussy are you?"

I began convulsing with a deep, deep melancholy. "Why do you have to be so mean to me?" I stammered, looking at him with eyes that pled for a world without curfews, without parents and siblings, without acne, without vicious taunts and harangues and violent assaults on the way home from school, without daily public humiliations and indignities, without retainer replacement fees, without cutting remarks from embittered teachers, without pretty people and smart people and the self-confident, passing through the halls with their feathered hair and their cocksure swaggers and wiggles. Oh, the injustice!

Date Written: March 15, 2004
Author: Dylan Danko
Average Vote: 4.2222

03/18/2004 qualcomm: is the future-self who visited your past self older than you are now, author? also, does the hyphen between future and self mean that i'm supposed to place stress on "future" rather than "self"? my FUtureself, or my futureSELF?
03/18/2004 Craig Lewis (4): 4.5, only 25.5 fewer stars than Penny Pulaski! Am bugged by the "murder slash cannibalism" line: detracts a bit from the purity the short. The adolescent angst/future-past self metaphysics stand gloriously on their own, IMHO.
03/18/2004 Mr. Pony (5): This is a rich thing you've found to mine here. Keep up the good work.
03/18/2004 anonymous: Lewis please see chapter one.
03/18/2004 Craig Lewis: AHA! .5 star restored. Thanks, Pony.
03/18/2004 Craig Lewis: I would have Reuven log on to restore the unjustly docked star, but I might get yelled at.
03/18/2004 qualcomm: lewis, you realize of course that the murder/cannibalism thing is a reference to this short's prequel?
03/18/2004 qualcomm: man, those comments came in quick. now i look like a real jerk.
03/18/2004 Dylan Danko: No Lewis, it's ok. Go ahead.
03/18/2004 Craig Lewis: Had no idea, The Lerpa. Wish I had. Great job, Danko. The final graf is a super-duper tour de force.
03/18/2004 Reuven Goldfarb (5): !!!
03/18/2004 qualcomm (4): i didn't like this that much, but i'm giving it four because danko's emotionally blackmailing me.
03/18/2004 Dylan Danko: Wha???
03/18/2004 John Slocum (5): Lovely effort. I had a feeling this was yours before I even knew about the 'prequel.' The 2 future-selves from the 2 shorts seem a bit different. Is the future self the same age in every visit? I don't need this question answered now, in fact I'd rather wait.
03/18/2004 Mr. Pony: Yeah, you really cut loose at the end there. I'm proud of you.
03/18/2004 Ewan Snow (4): I laughed. And I'm glad somebody is raising awareness about the human costs of retainer replacement fees.
03/18/2004 anonymous: Lerpa, I'm wondering if it's possible for you to give me a decent rating without also making it backhanded.
03/18/2004 qualcomm: i'unno. what's lerpa?
03/18/2004 anonymous: it's kinda annoying.
03/18/2004 qualcomm: i believe my four star votes for this, this and this, while containing some critiques, were all given without serious reservation.
03/18/2004 Mr. Pony: Is The Lerpa demanding the definite article?
03/18/2004 anonymous: What utter bullshit.
03/18/2004 qualcomm: you talking to the lerpa, author?
03/18/2004 anonymous: yuh
03/18/2004 qualcomm: may i inquire as to the amount/nature of ransom you're demanding to let me off the emotional hook?
03/18/2004 qualcomm: pony: yes.
03/18/2004 anonymous: Now that's what I call emotional blackmail!
03/18/2004 Benny Maniacs (4): This is what The Lerpa was talking about when he said "heart-strings". Philo dough, topical, both awesome words, though conclusion in the third act waned for me.
03/18/2004 anonymous: And what was your original blackmail comment about anyway, Lerpa?
03/18/2004 Will Disney: it's a good thing your future self didn't stumble across the 4th grade version of you in school. WHOA! HELLO FCC!
03/18/2004 qualcomm: author, see your first post directed at me in this short for example.
03/18/2004 Dylan Danko: Lerpa, if you mean, "Wha??" in reaction to your accusation, my question still stands. Wha??
03/18/2004 qualcomm: no, the next one directed at me
03/18/2004 Dylan Danko: Dude, why don't you just answer the original question. My second comment was also in response to that and you know it.
03/18/2004 qualcomm: the question of whether it's possible for me to give you a good rating without a backhanded compliment? yes, i believe that it is possible.
03/18/2004 Dylan Danko: Nice try there. No, the emotional blackmail accusation. And also while you're right, it is possible, i've just noticed that it hasn't happened. With one very slight exception, not once...ever!
03/18/2004 qualcomm: you're insane. look at my last "this" link below. and if you're going to argue that my description of a word you used as "obscure" is in any way a criticism, you're even more insane than i asserted in the first sentence of this post.
03/18/2004 qualcomm: as to your question about how you wage emotional blackmail, come on! you're trying to imply that my critiques of shorts prove i have some chip on my shoulder, or are unfair in some way, aren't you? why can't i just say what i want about them? emotional blackmail!!
03/18/2004 scoop (3): This one is medium-sized.
03/18/2004 Mr. Pony: .
03/18/2004 Dylan Danko: What I'm saying is that you when you give my shorts 4 or 5 stars you refuse to actually compliment them. This is only so glaringly apparent because often you feel the need to somehow mitigate your 4 or 5 star vote with a diss, whether it be the highly dishonorable ironic vote for my "glossy life" mishap, the "i'm giving this 4, i don't really know why..."line or your 5 star rating with the comment "the idea of this mediocrity getting a higher rating than my brilliant "Jibley" short really rankles my chancre. i mean, it totally cheeses my keyster. thing is, i kinda like said sensations!" and of course todays 4 stars with the false accusation that you were only giving it such a rating b/c i was blackmailing you.
If you don't think I've written a single good short I would have to disagree with you but am fine with it. But if you're giving me a 4 or 5 star rating do you really have to make sure everyone knows that you think the short doesn't merit it but hey you're doing it anyway b/c...blah, blah. It just strikes me as dishonorable. Can't you also show my some love Feldy! Haven't you learned anything from today's short? Don't you know how close to tears I am??? Etc.
03/18/2004 Dylan Danko: In response to you're last comment please review the sequence of events, douche.
03/18/2004 qualcomm: regarding YOUR last comment, today's sequence of events is irrelevant, because as you know, but choose to ignore at this very moment, we've discussed this very topic before, though it may have been at Pete's, so maybe you don't remember. i love you.
03/18/2004 qualcomm: and i'd like you to acknowledge that the last link i provided in one of my earlier comments here does go to short of yours that i gave an unequivocal 4 to. the "i don't know why" that i amended to one of my other ratings wasn't intended as a dis, by the way. i was just saying that the short in question worked on me in mysterious ways.
03/18/2004 Dylan Danko: What should I acknowledge? You're missing the point which is that you seem incapable of actually complimenting me when you give be a decent rating and often you feel you have to mitigate it with a dis. Yes as your last link indicates, sometimes you simply don't say anything at all.
No I don't remember you accusing me of emotional blackmail. I assume it was in response to the Brad, Ewan jack-off controversy. What a ridiculous thing to feel not that I really believe you considering it's effects have only now taken hold. But if for some stupid reason you do feel blackmailed, i urge you please to stop inflating my shorts. If you don't like them - as your emotional blackmail comment seems to indicate - rate and comment on them accordingly. It's not very honorable to give me a decent rating and then say you're only doing it because I made you. I must call bullshit. I love you as well.
03/18/2004 Mr. Pony: .
03/18/2004 Dylan Danko: Yeah, Pony, lets see how this puppy plays out for a bit longer first.
03/18/2004 Will Disney: yeah, this isn't the latest controversy, but it may be one of the funniest.
03/18/2004 Dylan Danko: Disney, show me your tits.
03/18/2004 qualcomm: a few items: 1) the conversation at pete's had nothing to do with the jackoff controversy, it was much more recent, and actually there have been several such exchanges on different nights. for example, you once pounced on me for having given texxx a 5 when i hadn't ever given you one. 2) so now you're changing your argument from "jon never rates my shorts highly without a dis" to "well, he has, but only when he doesn't say anything at all." 3) am i really required to say something nice when i rate a short well? there've been several times when i've rated shorts with no accompanying/relevant comments, not just with you. 4) again i must reiterate, the "i don't know why i'm giving this a 4" comment i made in reference to your Young Goodman Browne short was not intended as a dis. 5) the fact that i'm spending all this time explaining my ratings proves that i'm being emotionally blackmailed, and that you are quite possibly even emotionally abusing me at this very moment!
03/18/2004 Will Disney: *my* tits? what about annebot?
03/18/2004 Jon Matza: I'm there at your side, I'm part of all the things you are/ But you've got a part of someone else/ You've got to find your shining star/ And where are you now, now that I need you?/ Tears on my pillow wherever you go/ I'll cry me a river that leads to your ocean/ You never see me fall apart

In the words of a broken heart/ It's just emotion that's taken me over/ Tied up in sorrow, lost in my soul
03/18/2004 Will Disney: you mean you're on my side about the tits, right?
03/18/2004 Dylan Danko: I did not pounce on you and you fucking know it. I simply mentioned it during a conversation about how everyone thought Texxx sucked - if I remember correctly. I can't remember any other exchanges though I defer to you on this, I guess. Regarding points 2,3 and 4: I apologize for, and admit to, not having been clear in my initial response to your baseless accusation that I had some emotional hold on you such that you were forced to inflate my short(s). But really, it’s all part of the same argument. I realize that this is sounding rather thin-skinned but your 4 star rating and comment below "stuck in my craw" coming on the heels of two ironic (boy oh boy) 5 star ratings with accompanying commentary just to make sure everyone knew how you really felt about them. I went back and reviewed and found that, for the most part, the few decent ratings you’ve given me have come with either caveats or decidedly non-committal (and yes, your “hey I don’t know why…falls into this category) comments. No, of course, you're not expected to provide favorable commentary with good votes. It just seemed, combined with everything else above, that the absense of it stuck out. Again, none of this would have mattered much if not for your most recent vote and comment. Should I not be expected to respond? So which is it? Are those 4 and 5 star votes both ironic and genuine or are they all due to the emotional vise I have you in? The fact that you won’t admit your dishonorable nature speaks to the physical abuse you’ve unleashed on me. Somehow, though, I just can’t bring myself to press charges. Baby, I’m sure you’ll change.
03/19/2004 qualcomm: all i know is i love you and i'm going to try, really try, to be an even better friend to you.
03/19/2004 Dylan Danko: I'll expect jokes like the one below for the next few weeks or so and then only once in a short while. I will also try to be a better friend by trying to harness the great psychological power I have over you and only using it when absolutely necessary, like when I need a favor or something. MMWAAA!
03/19/2004 Benny Maniacs: Dylan and The Lerpa sitting in a tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-G. First comes love, then comes marrieage, then comes a hybrid Snow/Lewis baby in the baby carriage.
03/20/2004 Will Disney: That's a nice image - Dylan and the Lerpa.
03/21/2004 Dylan Danko: Put it back in your pants, Will.
03/21/2004 Mr. Pony: Does that go for all of us?
03/21/2004 Jon Matza (4): Good short, by the way.
03/21/2004 Dylan Danko: No, Pony, with you I wanna watch.