Editor’s Letter

Scary Monster

What in God’s name is that thing?”
I was starting to freak out. There was a mass of unspeakable bullshit beginning to take the shape of ... no, it was definitely taking on the form of a multiheaded monster with each head sucking the brains out of the other ones. But that wasn’t even the weird part. It was wearing khaki chinos and a blue blazer with an American flag lapel pin.
     “I gotta get outta here.”
     Did I say that? I couldn’t tell where the voice came from. It was as though all the air had been sucked out of the room by the monster. Like I was living in a vacuum. My mind ached. The monster seemed annoyed whenever I would try to make sense of it.
     “Crap! The damn thing’s telepathic!”
     As hideous as the thing was, I couldn’t look away. It was that quintessential cliché of not being able to take one’s eyes off a car wreck come to life. Only this was my living room.
     “It can’t be coming out of my TV, can it?”
     Definitely my voice this time. I was slowly coming around — at least enough to hear my own voice as a thought in my head. This thing, whatever it was, was definitely emerging from my TV. Emerging is probably too tame a word. Bursting forth? Exploding out of? Whatever. All I know is it was FREAKING ME OUT.
     What was really scary was the damn thing looked vaguely familiar — which is in and of itself freak-out worthy since it’s not every day you see a multiheaded monster wearing khaki chinos and a blue blazer with an American flag lapel pin sucking its own brains out. Wait a second; I think one of the heads ...
     “Hey, babe, you wanna order a pizza for dinner?”
     OK. Definitely not me or the monster. Great. I’m freaking out, the end of life as we know it is imminent, and Lisa wants a pizza for dinner.
     “Sure, honey, but can you order it? I’m kinda busy right now.”
     I tried to sound normal.
     “Sure. What kind would you like?”
     “Whatever you’re having, honey. I’m kinda like freaking out about the end of the world right now, so I don’t really care.” 
     I don’t think she heard the second part, and if she did she ignored it. Probably for the best. The distraction did nothing for my mental state, however. Just as the dinner issue was settled another disembodied voice wafted through my cranium:
     “Are you freaking out? [YES] Do you believe the end of times are upon us? [Definitely] Are the Muslims coming to get you? [Wha?] Do you want to nuke countries you can’t find on a map? [What the ... ?] If so, you may be suffering from Acute Bullshit Syndrome, or ABS.”
     The monster has been replaced with heavily armed, shiney white people and lame background music.
     “ABS affects white, low-information voters that have an overwhelming desire to stockpile automatic weapons in fear of a government takeover — by the government. Ask your Medicaid-paid-for doctor about ABSexor. Side-effects may include nausea, vomiting, and a complusion to vote for a Democrat.”
     The lame background music makes me want to gouge out my ears with an icepick. Thankfully, the monster has returned. One of its heads resembles an orangutang.
     “Hey, honey, are you still watching the Republican debate?” Lisa hollers from the bedroom. 
     Happy 2016. It’s going to be an interesting ride.