ARQ’s Modern Solutions to Old Skool Problems

I’m feeling a little grouchy today.  Yes, more than usual.  The day is only half way over but my bullshit-o-meter is full up of toddler attitude and Facebook know-it-alls.  I think I need a nap.  But since that’s not an option at the moment, I’ll drink some old coffee, vape off my e-cig, and try to write something half-way humorous to pull me outta this little funk.

Thus, I give you…  some modern solutions (that are likely safer/more PC) to some old school problems.  No, I’m not talking about boring shit, like my e-cig.  I’m talking about real issues, here.

Like werewolves, for instance. People have been dealing with werewolf infestations since before you could say hypertrichosis.”  Traditionally, the solutions have been a little dangerous…and messy.  Wolfsbane?  Come on, wolves are carnivores!  Piercing the hands of the werewolf with nails?  How...Judeo-Christian.  There are apparently other less violent, lesser known ways of dealing with lycanthropes as well, such as one German method whereby a werewolf is cured by speaking it’s Christian name to it three times.  Well, that’s just a little bit religion-biased, I think.  Not to mention, I’m guessing it’s not so effective, or we might have heard about it more often.  My guess is the first few dudes to yell any name at a werewolf became Scooby snacks in pretty short order.  And as  to silver bullets, who’s rich enough to just have loads of silver lying around???

A much more humane and modern solution the problem would be the use of shock collars– nice, non-lethal, non-biased, non-costly werewolf control.  Simply snap the collar on the alleged shape-shifter while he’s in his human form (this part is very important!), and keep the control with you at all times.

Where else can we apply some more modern solutions to the problems that plagued our ancestors?  I’m glad you asked.  How about poltergeists?

Poltergeists  have traditionally been described as troublesome spirits who, unlike ghosts, haunt a particular person instead of a specific location. (wikipedia)

One theory behind poltergeist disturbances is that they are actually manifestations of emotional distress brought on by an (unwitting) human, most often a child or teenager, and often a female.  In the 1982 film Poltergeist, it is suggested that more than one spirit is responsible for the “haunting” of the Freelings’ home, and that there is one demon in particular who has targeted young Carol Ann in an attempt to gain control over the multitude.

I maintain that in either case, the solution is simple.  Give that little bitch some Lithium!  (I’m sorry, she’s the victim here, too, isn’t she?)  Well, either way, she’ll be too busy twitching in the corner to cause much trouble– the demon can’t use her for anything, and her emotions will be so blunted that any poltergeist “disturbances” will be a thing of the past (along with fine motor control…)

Poltergeist movie

One more freebie for the day… I might have to consider charging for the rest.  I can’t do everything for you people!  Let’s talk about demon possession.  Think The Omen.  Think Linda Blair in The Exorcist.  Now you could call a priest.  But then you’ll have to pick up the house, hide all the porn, and likely listen to a bunch of literal bible thumping for half the night.  Not to mention the dry-cleaning bill for all that pea-soup vomit, and the structural damage to your home.

The solution is actually so much simpler.  These kids are really nothing more than out-of-control, attention-seeking brats.  And what do we do with out-of-control, attention-seeking brats in America?  Why, we reward them with their own reality TV show or spot on a talk show!  They want attention; let’s give it to them!  They can duke it out with one another on Jerry Springer, or go to “demon” rehab at the Sober House!

And if that doesn’t work , you can always try the Lithium or the shock collar.

Today on Jerry Springer, kids who are inhabited by the devil!

Today on Jerry Springer, kids who are inhabited by the devil!

How to Kill a Werewolf

artwork from Cycle of the Werewolf by Stephen King

“Silver bullets. How ridiculous…”

“You mean they don’t really work?”

He snorted. Pale yellow light from inside softly   illuminated their table through the cafe windows, and the ring in his lip glimmered, reflecting the glow, whenever he spoke. His teeth were very white. “Well, yeah. I guess they would…if any of those morons actually knew how to make them.”

Her mouth made a disapproving little moue, but her eyebrows betrayed her confusion and curiosity.

He set his cup of coffee on the tiny cafe table, leaned back in his seat, and settled his hands comfortably on his flat belly. “Well, you don’t think it’s like the movies, do you? Some high-school kid melts down some silver in shop class and pours it into a bullet mold? Loads it into a handgun?” He chuckled and shook his head.

“What?” She sounded slightly defensive.  That was pretty much exactly what she thought.

“You don’t know anything about guns, do you?”

“What do you mean?” Now she was definitely defensive.

He favored her with a bemused look. “How do you think a bullet fires? Magic? You can’t just put a bullet-shaped piece of silver in a gun and pull the trigger,” he said, mimicking the action with an imaginary finger-gun. “First of all, bullets come in casings. You need gunpowder to make the bullet go, to fire it out of the casing. And then you need something to ignite the gunpowder; that’s what the primer is for. The pin inside the gun strikes the base of the cartridge casing when you pull the trigger and –boom!– sparks the primer, which ignites the gunpowder. The energy of the explosion and the compressed gases force the bullet out of the casing.” He paused and lit a cigarette. “It takes skill to make that kind of thing. Not just any idiot can do it.” The hand holding the cigarette described lazy circles in the air.

She stared at him a moment, and then- “Well, wise-ass, do you know how to make silver bullets?”

artwork from Cycle of the Werewolf by Stephen King

“No-oo. But I know the principles behind it.” Then he added, with exaggerated patience, “you don’t need to be a chef to know if your food tastes good, do you? Or a professional singer to know when someone else can’t carry a tune in a bucket?”

Her eyes narrowed momentarily but she had no rebuttal. Finally, she said, “So if bullets are out, what’s the next best thing? Monkshood? Beheading? Silver-tipped arrows?”

He smiled thinly at her. “Did I say bullets were out? No, bullets’ll work-”

“But you just said-”

“I said homemade silver bullets wouldn’t work. That’s amateur kid’s shit. Real bullets would work just fine. They don’t even have to be silver, just aimed into the right major organ and big enough to do the job.”

“Really?” she asked, her annoyance momentarily forgotten.

“Sure.” He shrugged. “They’re freaks of nature…but they’re still just animals. Like people.” He reached for his cup and downed the rest of the coffee.

“What’s that supposed to mean? ‘Like people’?”

He leaned forward and butted out his cigarette in the glass ashtray on the table. “People,” he repeated, speaking slowly, as if to a child. “Man. Human beings. Homosapiens… Scientifically speaking, we all belong to the Animal Kingdom. We’re all animals.”

She rolled her eyes so he added, almost apologetically, “I only meant that they may have the strength and senses of a wolf, and the intelligence of a man, but they’re animals. All animals can be killed, and it doesn’t take a silver bullet to do it.”

“Right. Well, it’s getting late and I have to work tomorrow, soooo…I’d better jet. Thanks for the coffee.”

He only smiled and lit another cigarette, the flame from the lighter reflecting on his white teeth and his lip ring. She thought it was probably made of silver.

© alienredqueen (pencil and Prismacolors)

Diagram of typical

Diagram of typical “bullet” – more appropriately termed “cartridge”:  1-bullet 2-casing 3-gunpowder 4-rim 5-primer (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Tidal Pull (IV)

Aug 22

I go to the doctor’s for a physical.  Dr. Carr has been my physician for a while, but he doesn’t really know me, because, like most guys I know, I avoid the doctor unless I am practically dying.  So at first, he looks at my chart with a mixture of mild disapproval and curiosity. Continue reading