After reviewing the September Rocky Point Times “Our Contributing Writers” section in which brief biographies of a dozen feature authors was posted, I was astounded my picture – actually a generic sketch of what someone thinks I should look like – was included among the gallery of portraits.
While I may not possess the facial distortions of Cap’n Greg or the innocent appearance of Lannette, I believe it is obviously safe to assume that I’m infinitely better looking than Joe Houchin, who seems to frequently grace the paper’s pages. This is not meant to be a derogatory reflection upon his rapidly receding hair line, instead a simple statement of fact. Joe’s a nice guy and willing to assist in any endeavor asked of him, but let’s face it, somewhere along the way the process of evolutionary “handsomeness” must have gotten derailed. At least my picture plainly shows a perfectly formed cow lick crowning a very distinctively shaped head.
God has blessed me in this way.
However, I understand a different picture has been substituted; one which the editors of the paper must believe reflects a more positive likeness of my image – A Grotesque/Gargoyle looking creature, menacingly perched atop some kind of pedestal. If that’s what management thinks I look like, then I’m fine with it – as long as they continue to publish my articles.
The bio also made reference to my continuing struggle with numerous mental disorders – some real and some intentionally fabricated for expediency. You see, out of necessity I’ve often been compelled to act in an apparent deranged manner in order to protect my secret government identity. And this was a requirement long before the recent DEA gun running, NSA and IRS scandals grabbed the headlines.
Although not actually enrolled in the witness protection program, I was clandestinely recruited by a black-op government agency code-named ZIPPITDAMNIT, an acronym for “Don’t Tell Anyone Anything About Nothing That You Didn’t See Or Hear.” I know, the letters don’t seem to fit the title but that helps keeps the organization hidden from prying eyes. Consequently, the witness protection story was just a ruse to deflect attention from my official/unofficial assignment.
My mental stability, however, has always been a matter of contention. Even as far back as elementary school I can recall Mrs. Warden (in those days teachers didn’t have first names) my 3rd grade teacher, admonishing me to get up off the floor and quit slithering around like a barn snake in search of a mouse.
I assured her it wasn’t my intention to act in such a bizarre manner, but for some unexplainable reason I felt compelled to crawl under the desks, continually sticking out my tongue in order to sense the presence of a small rodent sized meal.
She wasn’t amused and ordered me to counseling. My parents were also informed of my erratic behavior, but dad simply replied that he didn’t think it was any big deal as similar conduct was not unusual in the Bibb household. I later found out both my brother and younger sister had involuntarily participated in some kind of hush-hush experimental drug testing which eventually altered their DNA composition to more closely resemble a reptile than a homo sapien. This would probably account for the annual shedding of their skin and the constant in-and-out darting of the tongue.
Not that it mattered, but I think dad was paid 30 or 40 dollars by the drug companies as compensation for donating my siblings to the betterment of science.
Fifteen years later, I found myself in the USMC sloshing through the rice paddies of Vietnam, and covered with something called Agent Orange. “Don’t worry” my sergeant assured me, “the stuff is harmless.”
Maybe not as harmless as thought. He was soon hospitalized with a nervous disorder and I was tagged with having a newly defined malady called PTSD, which I thought meant Permanent Transfer to San Diego. Little did I imagine I would eventually end up in a Navy psych-ward, being forced fed handfuls of mind altering pills and then required to tell the doctor if an ink blotch smeared upon a white piece of paper more closely resembled the Orion Constellation or spider veins on the back of nurse Sylvia’s calves.
Actually, I couldn’t tell the difference because I had no idea what the Orion Constellation was and nurse Sylvia’s calves were not really very distinguishable to my drugged state of mind. So, I just guessed the Orion thing. Apparently, that was the wrong answer and I would continue to remain under doctor’s supervision for another three years.
It wasn’t until representatives of the CIA visited the hospital in search of “volunteers” for a super sensitive covert operation designed to subvert internet sexting activity between the White House and certain congressional interns. I was recruited as a “mole” to infiltrate various top level computer files while at the same time presenting the unassuming image of an ordinary pizza delivery guy who just happened to stumble into the vault of our nation’s most sensitive records and hard drives. Not an easy thing to do when carefully juggling a three topping pan crust pie.
Things went reasonably well until I discovered my supervisor was a “counter mole,” working for the opposition. His mission was to alter all the intelligence information I had gathered by reversing the osmosis of the photosynthesis and substituting bogus data into the department’s subliminal mainframe. This would give the appearance of an actual interlocutory transmission but no pertinent cells or cyber follicles would transfer onto the browser, resulting in a default within the high-tech apparatus and unsecuring all external links for possible viral infestation.
It all sounds very complicated, but simply boils down to a multiple series of 0’s and 1’s, placed in proper sequence as to produce a meaningful message to anyone capable of deciphering such gibberish.
The term “whistleblower” had not been officially sanctioned yet, consequently upon my arrest I was simply referred to as a traitor and promptly tossed into a heavily guarded small room, a dozen floors below the Supreme Court’s washroom. There I would patiently await my sentencing, since any prospect of a jury of my peers had been overruled, based upon a 14th century case law in Bulgaria which said, in part, “No person charged with whistleblowing – aka treason – while in the performance of his said duties shall be allowed the customary practice of a trial, but instead his guilt or pretended innocence will be determined by a panel of nine senile men and women, costumed in flowing black robes and speaking in tongue.”
I don’t remember much after that until I reawakened from my drug induced stupor, sprawled upon a beach in a foreign land with a copy of the Rocky Point Times clinched securely in my convulsing hand. I was later told such activity really wasn’t all that unusual in this part of the world, but normally several bottles of Tecate would be seen scattered about the semi-breathing carcass. To have a local newspaper lying inexplicably in close proximity was, indeed, a very uncommon occurrence.
But such is fate. After regaining consciousness and restoring sufficient equilibrium to at least partially stand upright, I scanned the local chronicle and immediately discovered there appeared to be an urgent need for a mentally challenged, pharma saturated contributing writer to help bring balance to an otherwise sane publication.
Apparently the staff at the RP Times had similar thoughts and recognized an opportunity to expand its readership to include the quasi-coherent underworld of the tormented mind.
According to Sandy O’Hare, owner and editor of the local paper, my qualifications and experiences more than exceeded her wildest expectations.