Talking to a Cock

I guess I was a little drunk, I was definitely over stimulated.  The boardwalk carnival was an intoxicating menagerie of sound and light, of beautiful bodies still in their skimpy beach wear, smelling of sweat and suntan lotion, of sweet & salty junk food deep fried in sugar and cheese.  I wandered like a leaf on the pungent breeze, my bare feet barely touching the sticky wood.

The hawkers, luring people into sideshow attractions were on fire tonight.  Business was booming at the Snake Boy house, patrons screamed in anguished pleasure.  The ‘Winged Pigs’, ‘Dragon Lady’ and ‘6 Jesters Conjoined’ had long, eager lines waiting.  But the one which caught my eye was the only booth whose crier didn’t look like an ancient, cigar chomping, sticky pocketed circus clown with mirrored shoes.  SHE was a sultry, middle aged woman with curves and lumps and hair and eyes that melted my…bones, which is probably why I didn’t read the sign on the booth properly – or even care.  I just handed her my money and walked in.

There on the podium, in the center of a dark room with red satin curtains, stood a raging red COCK……I mean, it was a red rooster with bright flaming plumage.  The other people in the room sat on benches around the bird, enthralled.  I stood for a long moment, puzzled and awkward…until the cock looked over at me and said, “Take a seat there, Sparky, I’m just getting started…” in a voice that sounded remarkably like Noam Chomsky’s.

You know…I may have misheard the writing prompt today…  What?…OH!!!, “Talking to a Cop”…yeah, I don’t talk to cops.

Our new book, “Bludgeon the Clown” is all done and off to the printer.  Our publisher, EEW Books uses a tiny, local printer in Bloomfield NJ, a mile from our old studios.  There are plenty of excellent printers up here in the frosty north, but none better than Tom DeStefano and his team at Budget Print (332 Broad Street).  It’s a family owned, very professional, highest quality, friendly business whose integrity is rare nowadays.   If they were located in Reykjavik or Kathmandu or Djibouti… we would still travel there for their services.  -John

First Contact


While Marsha is away (once again), I get to post something I like.  This illustration has some awkward bits in this context, but it made for a good cover and was (strictly) scene-specific to the story/ assignment;  The Earth delegation approaches, having landed their shuttle (by invitation) on the surface of a massive alien starship orbiting Jupiter.

“First Contact” is the cover illustration for the May, 2006 issue of Analog Magazine.  This is the first of 5 images (a cover and 4 interior illos.) for a 4 month serialized story by Edward M. Lerner called “A New Order of Things,” part of his ‘Interstellarnet’ series  It’s a great story and well worth reading.  I got to meet Lerner at the 2010 Nebula awards – nice guy.  I’ve read a few of his books over the years and highly recommend them.  -John

Always the Quiet Ones


Bilious Blunt was a bloviating buffoon.  He was the loudest, most opinionated fellow in town.  He lacked social skills and self control and nobody could stand him.  He smelled funny, had a constant menagerie of food and grease on his shirt front and dressed like a clown without even trying.  He spit and defecated in public and his Sunday sermon belches were epic.  Worst of all, he cultivated an unusually long, phallic nose that made everybody…uncomfortable.

People avoided him like a social disease and spent most of their thoughtful energy focused on his awfulness…perfect!…because nobody suspected him.  He didn’t ‘fit the profile’ and hardly a spare idea could penetrate the obnoxious, tasteless distraction he presented…..and nobody EVER found out…

Jack the Clown

I once met a clown named Jack                                                                           who shoved a grenade up his crack.                                                                  They recovered his penis                                                                                         halfway to Venus                                                                                                            and both of his balls in Iraq.

***Today we celebrate our ‘100th post’…and every100 posts we publish the most offensive dick-n-balls, exploding clown limerick we can find.  This one comes to us from Venus the Clown (a major contributor to our new book “Bludgeon the Clown”).  John (the artist) claims Venus lifted it from his notes and reworked it to put his name in it.  He says he heard it a decade ago from an old friend, Robert Kopecky, when they worked on ‘Codename: Kids Next Door’ together.  I think John just hates my good friend Venus and likes to ruin my ‘100th post’ celebration…  -Marsha

*P.S.  The only problem with Venus’ limerick (besides being disgusting) is that you have to mispronounce Iraq, like an American (eye-rack), for the rhyme to work properly.