Daily Archives: June 17, 2017

Toilet Gator – Chapter 104

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An old tarp flapped in the breeze on the roof of the hardware store. Whatever was stowed away underneath it, it was of considerable size. Rain pelted it and ran off onto the gravel that covered the top of the building.

“Will you get that camera out of my face?” Sharon asked.

Walter kept rolling.

“We have to document this!” Natalie snapped. “This is the biggest story since…since…I don’t think there’s ever been anything this big!”

Burt and Rusty set the canoe down.

“The hell do you think he wanted this for?” Burt asked.

“Beats me,” Rusty replied.

The door leading to the roof swung open and Cole rushed through it, chainsaw in one hand, Angry Barracuda in the other. “He’s coming! He’s coming!”

Skippy’s terrifying “ROAR!” bellowed up through the stairwell and up into the open air.

“Get back!” Cole cried as he pushed everyone aside. He jumped into the canoe and looked up at Rusty. “Throw me off!”

Rusty was puzzled. “What?”

“RAARGA!” Skippy bashed through the door and bared his teeth.

“He just wants me!” Cole shouted. “Throw me off!”

Burt grabbed one end of the canoe while Rusty grabbed the other. They carried the canoe and passenger over to the side of the roof and then started to swing the load back and forth as they counted. “1…2…”

Sharon cocked her shotgun and fired at Skippy. The gator charged right through the blast, hellbent on grinding Cole between his jaws.

“Cole,” Sharon said. “I hope you know what you’re doing!”

“I don’t but I’ve got to do something!” Cole replied.

“I love you!” Sharon shouted.

“I love you too!” Cole replied.

“Gag!” Rusty said.

“Pussy!” Maude added.

“Throw me already!” Cole demanded.

Rusty and Burt cried out in unison, “3!” They let go of the canoe on the final outward swing and watched as Cole and the canoe separated on the way down. Skippy bypassed everyone on the roof and jumped after Cole. The gang crowded around the roof as Cole, the canoe, and the gator each landed in the water with a splash.

The rain and wind made it difficult to see much of anything below.

“Did he make it?” Sharon asked frantically. “Rusty! Did he make it!”

“I don’t know,” Rusty said.

“Oh God,” Sharon said. “He can’t be dead. He just can’t be.”

Rusty looked away. “This is hopeless. Maybe we should just give up.”

The tarp was pushed to the sign and a shadowy silhouette emerged out from under it, carrying a very large object in his hands. The gang did not notice this newcomer until he was standing right next to them.

He began to speak. “At times like these, I’m reminded of the words that the great Winston Churchill once uttered in an effort to give his people hope at a time when the Nazi scourge made the cause of freedom in Europe seem hopeless.”

Rusty stared at the man in shock. “What the?”

“Those words, applied to our present day situation would be, ‘Even though large tracts of our town have fallen under the grip of the toilet gator and all the odious apparatus of toilet gator rule, we shall not flag or fail.”

Burt looked at the man. “I’ll be damned.”

The mystery man continued. “We shall go on to the end, we shall fight the toilet gator in Sitwell. We shall fight the toilet gator on the seas and oceans. We shall fight the toilet gator with growing confidence and growing strength in the air. We shall defend our town against the toilet gator, whatever the cost may be.”

“You’ve got to be kidding me,” Maude said.

“We shall fight the toilet gator on the beaches. We shall fight the toilet gator on the landing grounds. We shall fight the toilet gator in the fields and in the streets. We shall fight the toilet gator in the hills. We shall never surrender against the toilet gator.”

The man looked over the side of the roof and pointed out Cole, who was, at that very moment, pulling himself out of the water and into the canoe. Despite the rain and wind battering their faces, the gang cheered and applauded.

“And even if, which I do not for a moment believe, this town or a large part of it were subjugated and starving under toilet gator rule, then our Empire beyond the seas, armed and guarded by our noble fleet, would carry on the struggle against the toilet gator, until, in God’s good time, the New World, with all its power and might, steps forth to the rescue and the liberation of the old against toilet gator oppression.”

Sharon put a hand on the man’s shoulder. “Felix. That was the most beautiful thing I’ve ever heard.”

“Errm,” Felix said.

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Toilet Gator Mistake

Yeah, it just dawned on me that Walter and Natalie should have been filming the whole toilet gator showdown in downtown Sitwell but I forgot about them for the past few chapters.  I’ll fix it in the second draft.  For now, they suddenly appear out of nowhere again.  Sigh.  A writer’s work is never done.

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Search Engine Optimized Poet – An Ode to Bookshelf Q. Battler’s 35 Cents

:::Bongo Drum Beats:::

Hey there all you hep cats and hep kittens. Come on down to the East Randomtown Java Bean, where the poets always stink and the cups are never clean.

Next on the mic is the one and only Search Engine Optimized Poet…the only rhyme-smith whose beats bring in the web searchers’ feets, ya dig?

BQB’s latest royalty earnings report for BQB’s Writing Prompts.

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35 cents!  Whoa, 35 cents!

BQB’s book sales profits are incredibly immense!

What will he buy, with 35 cents?

The possibilities are long and intense!

A fence?  To put around BQB HQ to keep out his legions of fans?

Sands, tropical sands, and the best laid plans of mouses and mans.

Jams!  BQB, make your jelly shake…

At the thought of the 35 cents you just did make.

You can now bake…35% of a cake.

Or sleep in a motel room for 35% of the time until you do wake.

Snake.  You could probably buy a serpent.

Or a few flakes of off brand laundry detergent.

Insurgent.  The lady who wrote that made much more than you.

But don’t feel bad, for 35 cents is better than a pile of poo.

That’ll do pig, that’ll do.  It’s what the farmer said to Babe.  I thought you knew.

Didn’t you?  Didn’t you already spend your 35 cents on a stick of gum?

Maybe you should just spread good will and give your 35 cents to a bum.

 

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Toilet Gator – Chapter 103

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WHAM, WHAM, WHAM! Skippy head butted the glass window of Pemberton’s Hardware store until the tiniest crack formed and a slow but steady trickle of water poured onto the floor.

“That’ll never hold,” Sharon said.

Cole pounded his thumb down on the detonator button, yet the alligator remained intact. “Damn this thing!”

The great hunter looked around the store, putting his mind to work on what could be used to extricate everyone from this dismal state. He saw a canoe.

“Rusty, Burt! Get that upstairs now!”

“Sure thing, boss,” Rusty said.

“We’re on it,” Burt added.

“Sharon,” Cole said. “Get Maude upstairs.”

“Cole,” Sharon said. “What are you..”

WHAM! Skippy was getting angrier and that crack was getting bigger. More water trickled in.

“No time to explain!”

Sharon nodded and put her arm around Maude, nudging her toward a stairwell located behind the counter. Maude shook Sharon’s arm off. “Unhand me, woman! I’m fine.”

Cole checked the chamber of his Angry Barracuda. One bullet left. He would need to make it count. He grabbed a menacing looking chainsaw with an extra long blade, then searched the store frantically until he found a gas can behind the counter. He used it to fill up the chainsaw, then grabbed a piece of rope.

SMASH! The store window was obliterated, and shards of glass sprayed all over as water gushed in, flooding the entire bottom floor. Cole narrowly escaped being swept away as he headed upstairs.

Skippy swam inside and looked around for his target. He’d grown a visceral hatred of Cole and wanted him dead. Seeing his opponent nowhere, he roared out of sheer frustration, then waddled upstairs.

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Toilet Gator – Chapter 102

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Skippy was stunned, but not down for the count yet. He reeled from the explosion, which bought the gang just enough time to retreat into Pemberton’s Hardware store. After Sharon picked the lock, everyone ran inside and hid behind the counter. Their clothes were sopping wet, dripping water all over the floor.

“Are you going to be ok without your oxygen, my little cumquat?” Burt asked

“Cumquat?” Cole asked.

“Yes,” Maude replied. “I can’t go all day without it but I should be fine for a few hours, my handsome stallion.”

“Handsome stallion?” Cole looked to Rusty. “When did that happen?”

“Last night,” Rusty said. “Oh, by the way, good job Burt.”

Burt and Rusty exchanged a high-five.

“Nothing stops him,” Sharon said. “We’ve tried bullets, grenades, trucks, explosives.”

“Speaking of that,” Cole said as he pulled the detonator stick out of his pocket and pressed the red button a bunch of times. “Moses really screwed the pooch here.”

“What a pussy,” Rusty said. “Turning tail and running out on us in our time of need.”

“I don’t know,” Cole said as he pulled out his phone and sent a text message to Moses. “Why…won’t…C4…work…and…failure to send. Shit, Hurricane Dakota Rothschild has shut everything down.”

“Just like a rich socialite bitch,” Rusty said. “Everything is about her.”

The gang took an hour. They rested. Dozed off. Loaded their weapons. Raided the hardware store for supplies. They even helped themselves to some beef jerky and chips set up near the counter in an impulse buy display.

“What’s next, fearless leader?” Rusty asked.

Cole stepped over to the store’s front window. The complete lower half of the building was now submerged in water. Parked cars, downed utility poles, assorted debris, everything out on the street looked as though it had been magically transported to the bottom of the ocean.

“The hurricane to end all hurricanes,” Cole said.

“At the same time as the gator to end all gators,” Rusty added.

“Just our luck,” Sharon said.

Cole draped his arm around Sharon’s shoulder and looked out at the town underwater. “Story of our life, babe. If it weren’t for bad luck, we’d have no luck at all.”

“I don’t know about that,” Sharon said. “I feel lucky to have you.”

“Gag,” Rusty said.

“Pussy!” Maude shouted.

“Yeah, Cole!” Burt said. “You big pussy!”

Cole glared at Burt.

“What?” Burt said. “Sorry. I just wanted in on the fun.”

“Look people,” Cole said. “Sharon and I are back together. Anyone got a problem with that?”

Maude pulled out a flask and took a swig. “No problem. It’s your life. I just think you’re a pussy for taking her back is all.”

“There were extenuating circumstances,” Cole said. “We’ll explain when Mother Nature and a thunder lizard aren’t conspiring to destroy us, OK?”

Rusty squinted into the grimy water through the store’s dirty glass. “Where the hell did old snappy jaws go anyway?”

“Good question,” Sharon said. “I don’t see him.”

“You think he’s gone?” Rusty asked.

Maude emitted a boozy burp. “That sucker ran away with his tail between his legs. Probably half way to Cuba by now.”

“I don’t know,” Cole said as he stared into the water. “Something about this doesn’t seem…”

WHAM! Out of nowhere, Skippy pounded his head into the window and roared. The gang let out a collective scream. “Ack!”

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Daily Discussion with BQB – Amazon Buys Whole Foods

Happy Saturday, 3.5 readers.

Have you heard the news?  Amazon has just bought Whole Foods for $13.4 billion dollars.

My first reaction?  If Bezos has that kind of loot at his disposal, why the hell did he need to take 64 cents out of my 99 cent sale, literally the one and only copy I’ve sold of my book in over a week of it being online?

(Just kidding.  This dog doesn’t bite the hand that feeds him, even if it is a tiny piece of kibble at this point.  I wuv you Jeffykins!)

Did I mention you could be the second person to buy my book?

You might think this is just an interesting business deal but it’s much more.

Amazon didn’t just buy a chain of food stores.  They, in essence, bought a whole shit ton of buildings that will serve as good regional distribution centers which means, yup…you’re sitting on your computer late at night, you think a nice lobster and a gallon of milk would be delicious right about now.

Just click on that button and wham-o…some dude will show up at your doorstep with a lobster and milk, both delivered in time to avoid spoilage.

I mean, the Jeffmeister doesn’t clue me in on what he’s up to but I assume that’s where this deal is headed.

Many food store chain stocks took a dive because of this news.

Do you think this is good or bad, 3.5 readers?

On one hand, I’d hate to see brick and mortar grocery stores go out of business.  Perhaps they will always be around because a lot of people will still want to squeeze that melon to see if it’s ripe before they buy it.

I mean, really, who doesn’t like to squeeze a ripe melon?  Am I right?  Huh?  :::rimshot:::

On the other hand, sometimes I waste so much time in grocery stores.  You have to fight for parking.  You have to find a cart.  You have to roam around the aisles until you find what you want.  Usually there’s some blue haired old broad standing right in the spot I need to be and I’ll have to wait an hour before she moves just so I can get my hands on my hemorrhoid cream.  Extra-strength for extra itchiness!

Then you’ve got to wait in line.  You’ve got to check out.  Something will inevitably not have a price on it so some kid will have to go roam the whole store until he finds the price and everyone grumbles at you because you’re holding up the line.

Then you get home.  You have to haul all the bags into your house.  You’ll do that thing where you come super close to breaking all the bones in your hands just so you can carry extra bags to avoid making additional trips between your kitchen and your car.

Meanwhile, all the d-bags in your house will see you struggling with the groceries and they won’t lift a finger to help.  You’ll resent them because they’ll still eat the food you brought home even though they didn’t help you bring it in.  God, your family is a bunch of butt monkeys but you still love them.

So…yeah…I gotta be honest.  The idea of being able to sit at my computer, click off all the food I want on a website, and then some dude brings it to my house for me sounds pretty sweet.

I don’t know if they’ll completely tank grocery stores altogether in the near future.  Some may remain.  Some may modernize and start their own online delivery services.  But, yeah, in the near future, Amazon is going to take a big chunk out of the grocery biz.

Will that mean anything for us aspiring writers?  Maybe we can forego monetary profit and just ask readers to send us a jar of pickles from Amazon in exchange for all the books they download from us on…Amazon.

Of course, Amazon will take 64 percent of the pickles (or 30 if you ask for 2.99 worth of pickles, but not more than 9.99 worth of pickles).

FYI I hate pickles.  It’s like a witch doctor took a cucumber and did a spell on it to make it shrink.

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Toilet Gator – Chapter 101

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The Diablo and Burt’s rig had come to a stop. Burt jumped out of the cab as Rusty popped his head in and passed Cole his spare prosthetic leg, an extra pair of pants, and the Angry Barracuda, all three of which had been stowed away in the sports car’s trunk..

“Is she alright?” Cole asked.

“Don’t know,” Rusty answered. “I’ll check.”

Outside, Sharon brushed wet strands of hair out of her face and squinted through the rain to see the toilet gator on top of the overturned cab, scratching at the driver’s side door with his claws.

“Maude?” Sharon asked into her bluetooth headset as she cocked a pump-action shotgun.

The old lady’s response was feint and staticky in Sharon’s ear. “Ugh…bzzt…bsshhhk.”

Sharon fired a shot at the gator’s scaly hide. “You want some of this, you big green son of a bitch?”

Skippy turned his head at Sharon, hissed loudly in her general direction, then bashed his claw through Maude’s window.

“Hey!” Rusty shouted as he took a few shots at the gator with the SAW. “Gator! You don’t want that old gal! Got some young fresh meat, right here!”

Burt pulled a Beretta out of an ankle holster and fired at the beast as well.

Cole jumped out of the rig with his new leg and fresh pants on only to splash into a foot of water. The H20 was piling up in the street faster than the storm drains could get rid of it. A flood was imminent.

“Felix,” Cole said. “Have you been tracking us?”

“Errm,” Felix said.

“Can you get to this location?” Cole asked.

“Errm,” Felix said.

Cole joined Rusty and Sharon in shooting at the gator.

“This is unreal!” Sharon shouted.

“It’s like we’re tickling him!” Rusty added.

“Gator!” Cole yelled as he squeezed off a round at Skippy. “Come get me!”

Skippy looked at Cole and seethed with rage.

“Come you limp dicked, glorified iguana!” Cole said as he fired another shot. “You don’t stand a chance against me!”

Skippy took the bait. He leapt off the rig and made a big splash as he landed in the flooded street, making a big splash. He charged towards Cole, baring his big sharp teeth. Cole raised his firearm and squeezed the trigger. Click! He was out of bullets.

The great hunter closed his eyes and held his breathe. Cole figured this was it. This was the way he would die, as a delicious meal for a serial killing, sewer dwelling, oversized alligator.

Thump! An oxygen tank landed on Skippy’s head! Blam! The tank was pierced by a bullet, setting off a glorious explosion right on top of the monster’s noggin. Cole looked up to see Maude poking up out of the window of the overturned rig with a smoking revolver in her hand.

“You think you could kill me you fat scaly bastard?” Maude shouted. “I’ve had three kids and I’ve been through menopause!”

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Toilet Gator – Chapter 100

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Downtown Sitwell was a mess of old buildings lined up on either side of a narrow road, a tribute of sorts to a time straight out of yesteryear, back when Mom and Pop shops thrived. The Sitwell Park Mall had long rendered the district obsolete, though many small businesses, ranging from flower stores and clothing boutiques, to bakeries, delis and restaurants, struggled on.

The gang entered the area in a convoy, with the Diablo up front first, Burt and Cole’s rig second, an insanely enraged Skippy third and Maude bringing up the rear. Save for a few parked cars, the stores had been abandoned due to the hurricane, which was unleashing buckets of non-stop rain and oppressive winds.

One gust ripped a parking meter right out of the sidewalk on the left hand side of the road and sent it soaring through the first rig’s windshield. Burt and Cole looked away just in time to avoid being blinded by the scattered shards of glass as the meter landed in the cab between them.

“Mother of God!” Burt cried.

BRAMP! BRAMP! Maude blared on her horn. “Boys, you’re gonna wanna speed up, because I’m gonna ram that sucker!”

“You think that’s such a good idea?” Sharon asked.

“Do first, think second,” Maude said. “That’s…bzztt…bsshhhk…been my way my whole life and it’s got me this far.”

Cole realized his mother figure was about to put herself in some serious danger, but he also knew there would be no use in trying to talk her out of it. “Good luck, Maude.”

“Don’t need luck,” Maude replied. “I got skills.”

Maude stepped on the gas. Her rig sped up, moving down the narrow road, coming ever so close to that big green tail when all of a sudden, skipped turned, jumped into the air, and attacked the rig head on. He chomped his way through the engine block, bringing the rig to such an abrupt stop while it had been traveling a high speed that entire vehicle, cab and trailer, jack-knifed.

Cole watched in his rear view mirror as the trailer tipped over and bashed its way through a number of businesses – Tony’s Pizzeria, Mr. Flashy’s Tux Shop, the Red Rose Florist, Leon’s Deli. The trailer finally rested inside the office of B and G Insurance Company.

Burt hit the brakes. “Jesus! Is she ok?”

“Maude?” Cole screamed into bluetooth headset. “Maude!”

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