Adam sat in a sterile, vacant limbo, the walls unsettlingly white and empty. The loneliness and despair of the place peeled sound from the air, leaving only the ringing in his ears, a field of crickets chirping accusations, reminding him of Tommy Keeler's bloody fate. Adam saw his tiny fists charging into the air, cutting molecules to bits as they flew toward their target and freezing for a moment, contemplating the late Keeler's face, searching for a reason to blast it, explode it into a juicy red mushroom cloud. What if he could have talked his hands out of it, stepped away from the fight, walked away peacefully with the talking dog, the world a motionless picture behind them? He and his new friend would escape, exploring, looking for a new photo to step into, a new world without bullies or anger or deadly fists. Fate dangled magical possibilities in front of him, but only offered him the cold reality of punishment.
Chris Leavens: May 2005 Archives
The filthy gang of boys led by Tommy Keeler rumbled down the hillside toward Adam, their yelping mouths smiling wickedly underneath dull, close-set eyes. Adam watched them descend, a sweaty, heedless avalanche of hooligans, and the shock of impending humiliation and pain turned the frail boy to stone. He stood still, a statue waiting to be desecrated, the talking dog cowering behind him.
The slope gave way to flat land and Tommy Keeler slowed to cocky walk, the other boys following him in a 'V' formation, lending him their mobbish energy. "This is a dumb place, to hide, A-dumb." Keeler's cohorts praised his vapid wit with their chuckles. "That's yer new name, A-dumb. Like 'd-u-m' dumb."
The talking dog couldn't resist. "Learn to spell, moron," he barked from behind Adam's legs. The talking dog regretted it immediately.
After weeks of tweaking the site and uploading stories from our old forum, Pork Pony, I've finally gotten around to posting some of the photos that appeared on the double P, namely those by Frog. Here's a list:
It's not necessary, but it might help if you read part 1.
Sick with children, the colossal red-brick building sneezed and the entire fourth grade shot out of its doors. 122 ten-year olds exploded onto the green hillside, kicking dust and mud onto the beastly edifice. They were like a happy load of buckshot, a swarm of jubilant disorder, all of them running, tripping, jumping for freedom. All of them except for one; a really little, skinny one called Adam. This one shuffled from the building, his frail, brainy body moving in slow motion while the other children blurred past. He stared at the grass as shoe-drawn currents ripped through it, fatefully tearing and snapping select blades, leaving others to stand the test of life for at least a few more moments.
Adam shrank into the grass, got small like the ants and climbed aboard a prime leaf, the perfect launchpad. He waited and watched, ready to surf the next hapless wave that followed in the wake of his new classmates.
"Heads up! Heads up! Heads up, uh, Adam? Heads up ADAM?" He looked up, but it was too late. Whack! A kickball to the side of the face and Adam dropped to the ground. Tommy Keeler, a miniature lumberjack with hair the color of vacuum-cleaner dust, ran over and grabbed the ball. Adam held his burning right cheek and hid his pain, keeping Tommy Keeler in his periphery, afraid to look him in the eye. Third-grade legend taught Adam that to look Tommy Keeler in the eyes in a time of weakness meant certain death, or at least a wedgie.
The last seven days have seen more entries from our old web site Pork Pony added to the archives. There isn't much more PP text to put on the site, so photos will be posted very soon, most likely over weekend. Reread these stories or read them for the first time; either way, they'll make you laugh, think, or cry tears of confusion. Be sure to read Karl and Me by Joe Blevins, without a doubt one of the funniest things that was ever published on Pork Pony.
Karl and Me by Joe Blevins
A Cannonball For Mother Nature and The Legendary Mystery of Exploding Andy by Chris Leavens
A Licensee of Satan Lives in My Blue Recycling Tub by David Kendall
Afterschool Special by Tom Weaver
The Horrible Secret by Jason Kornblatt
Every Club11 movie review Mike Wargo wrote has been added.
Every Gimble masterpiece has been added.
A pile of Intelli exists here and more is on the way.
In addition to all of the old stuff being added, I've redesigned the section pages in an attempt to make them a little more user-friendly. I've also begun to add bios and section descriptions, again to make things a a bit more comprehendible. If you have any suggestions concerning ease-of-use issues and/or readability, let me know. I'm always looking to improve.
More new stuff's on the way. Rumor has it both Chris Woodward and Craig J. Clark have stories in the works and I'm currently polishing off Alone with the Talking Dog, Part 2.
Genius. Genius occupied every sentence, no every word in those letters, but now those letters were gone, torn to shreds, sitting in front of Adam in a box. Adam cried for days after he opened that package. Michelle wanted no more of Adam’s company nor did she want the company of his letters, the letters he wrote, the letters soaked in genius. She wanted to spend more time with Pierre, her new man, that guy who took her salsa dancing. Adam would have gone salsa dancing. Why didn’t she ask him? Why did she push him away as if every physical advance was an illegal assault? After all, he could reconsider; the "give-me-some-room-let’s-be-friends-for-a-while" thing might work.
Adam asked his talking dog to explain it, but the talking dog could not explain it. The talking dog just paced around the couch waxing poetic about the pants he had just bought.
Last night, a very serious ghost visited me. He attacked with ethereal howls and windy slaps all the while coating me in the stuff Egon called ectoplasm. The ghost wore a grim face, not unlike that of John Tesh's brother-in-law during Tesh's infamous "let's have a family reunion so people will be forced to listen to me play my heart out on the piano" days. I fought back and rocked the specter's face by adding more Pork Pony stories to the archives.
God Is Dead & Mountain Dew by Chris Woodward
Frank's Demise by Joe Blevins
The Society of People Who Look Just Like Me and The Way My Sink Gurgles by Craig J. Clark
The Ebony Wizard and Time Canyon, Episode 4 by Tom Weaver
Somewhat Fit by Jason Kornblatt
I'm actually nearly finished adding feature stories to the archives, so photos, Intelli, Stu, Reviews, and other bits are just days away from joining the hallowed halls of Unloosen.
Delving into the Pork Pony archives has been a treat. Many of the stories read like hyper-smart comedy sketches that never happened. Read through the archives and you'll see what I mean. I'm guessing the new stories that make it to these pages will be even better as a result of maturity(read: age), practice, and the mounds of "smart cheese" we've been obligated to eat. Added yesterday:
My Name Is Not William, Part 5 by David Kendall, Jr.
Your Cheating Pants by Joe Blevins
Time Canyon, Episode 3 and A Fictional Character's Rite of Passage by Chris Leavens
Outgoing Messages and Playing With Fire by Craig J. Clark
I added a pile of stories into the archives yesterday. I'm still working my way through the Pork Pony archives in chronological order, hitting the featured stories (fiction and non-fiction) first. I'll be adding in entires from Stu Says, Club 11, and Intelli-head in the coming days. I know the photo archives are highly anticipated as there was plenty of great stuff in there from Frog and one Jackson Anderer, but populating the photo section takes a good deal of time, so please be patient.
Take, Take, Take by Craig J. Clark
Unlock the Inner Player, Chain Mail Jacket, and Time Canyon, Episode 1 by Chris Leavens
Time Canyon, Episode 2 by Tom Weaver
Among the Nuts by Jason Kornblatt
I took this photo about a month ago in Chinatown, just north of downtown Los Angeles. It's a big rotating sign above a cake shop. The bluish-gray background is the sky.