Alex Bone

Alex Bone

Alex Bone (Michael D. Griffiths) is a man who likes to keep busy, too bad it mostly involves cleaning squirrels. In the past, his writing has been published in numerous periodicals and anthologies sometimes even published by someone else. He was awarded first place in Withersin’s 666 contest, which he was told will later give him the Golden Ticket tour of the third plane of Hell. He is on the staff of The Daily Discord, Cyberwizard Productions, SFReader, and on the Board of Directors for the Society of Advanced Humans that Seek to Live as Viking Ninjas. His series The Chronicles of Jack Primus is available through Living Dead Press. After being bitten by a zombie, his attentions have turned toward the walking dead and he has begun a new Zombie Apocalypse series called the Eternal Aftermath. When he discovered that he was a cloned from Eric the Red’s DNA, he wrote the Science Fiction series Skinjumpers. Later while experimenting with strange fungus, he slipped into a Fantasy world ruled by the mad mage Dalsala Den.

Bike Rider’s Blues: Schwinning!

Alex Bone

Route 66.6, AZ—These days I bike almost everywhere I go and my laptop always comes with me, even if my bicycle tires are pumped full of thorns or the weather’s so bad the mailmen stayed home. I’m talking about the place where my insult-resistant rubber hits the road. I have only lost one laptop during my backpack travels. But please don’t mention “The salad dressing incident”—it still gives me P.T.S.D.D. (Post Traumatic Salad Dressing Disorder).

Another thing that can give you P.T.S.D., the real DSM-V version, is making the morning commute on a bike. The first thing I would like to point out to all combustible engine drivers is that I didn’t live all these years, grind through a world of BS, keep my bike serviced, just to die under your tires this morning. No, this isn’t a slam on your driving—just the opposite. I’d rather deal with a reckless driver that just races by than someone who slows down, but doesn’t stop. Like he thinks I’ve never seen an oncoming car before and wouldn’t know what to do. Yeah, maybe, just at the right moment I’ll decide life isn’t worth living and dash myself under his tires.

Another thing that motorists need to realize is this: when I’m on a bike, everything is a road. If I did what I do on my bike while driving a car I would make the national news…every morning. The shortest distance between two points is a straight line or at least a wavering line…um, and sometimes after happy hour a very wavering line. I ride as the crow flies, after happy hour.

There is another way riding a bike can save you money and that’s at the grocery store. You can’t buy too much food at once if you have to hump it over a hill in a backpack after working all day and commuting ten miles. Should I buy potatoes or whip cream? I don’t need whip cream, but it is soooo much lighter and fluffier. Hmm… And, I know you wanted some prime rib, honey, but rice cakes were on sale again.

As if risking your life is not enough, you can also get flack from the cops. This once happened to me:

“Sir, we heard someone riding a bike was committing crimes.”

“Um, if I call in and say someone driving a car is committing crimes, would you stop every car?”

Everyone wants to avoid that DUI ticket, but think about it, I can’t kill people on my bike no matter how fast I ride and believe me and you’re really safe after a few beers because my speed markedly decreases. So bike riding seems like a safer bet for all involved. I got pulled over the other day and the cop says:

“Sir, I want to give you a sobriety test.”

“Cool, I got a great idea for one. Why don’t I ride a bike, uphill, while carrying all these groceries?”

There is another eternal question that comes up when you are riding. Am I a loser because I’m facing the elements while others are coasting by in style? Or, am I a righteous kick ass winner, because I motivated to wake up twenty minutes early and will be staying in better shape, while helping the environment, and even saving a few bucks?

Now ladies before you answer or sneer at that fella you see bike riding, remember a few simple things. First, that guy is fighting his beer gut during his commute. Perhaps even more important is stamina baby, stamina. Who’s going to be better in the sack? The guy risking his life to pump through the miles or the guy that takes the elevator to the second floor at work? Yeah, I’m talking to you, Zano. Kidding, he usually insists people come down to his office.

So does saving money and the environment all while increasing my health make me cool? Or, are you still pissed to see a biker breaking all the rules that you wish you could? Just remember, if we bikers tick you off, you had better stay in your car. If you mess with us we’ll kick your lazy fat ass and then ride over it—during a sobriety test while carrying our groceries.

Dolphin Mothers Boycott Discord

Alex Bone

Philadelphia, PA—Dolphin Mothers Against Humans Nailing Aquatic Beings In Theatrical productions or D.A.G.N.A.B.I.T protested outside of the Daily Discord’s Philadelphia Tower today. Hundreds turned out to see these underwater mammals hold signs proclaiming the evils of dolphin pornography and push rubber balls with their noses.

Zano immediately went home after a dolphin sprayed his shirt with water, so I interviewed Discord contributor, Tony Ballz.

“I used to work at D.A.G.N.A.B.I.T.,” said Ballz. “It was pretty cool.”

When I told him it was not a record store and asked him to comment on the protest, he looked out the window and said, “Who cares? I can’t understand a thing those *&^$%(    %^$*%^#@ $%#&^%@ are squeaking.”

(Incidentally, Tony managed to say all of Carlin’s 7 things you should never call a dolphin.)

Our CEO, Pierce Winslow, was off ‘recruiting’ Discord writers in Maui so I asked our field reporter, Cokie McGrath, what she thought about Dolphin porn. “I can’t see why everyone around here is so into it, but then again, my colleagues still play with Hot Wheels and eat ice cream for dinner. Oh, and I saw Alex Bone’s New Year’s resolutions and they included killing more crawdads, building a bridge to the moon, and learning how to piss like a fire hose. So nothing surprises me.”

William Lynn was also on hand and had helped organize the event. “You wouldn’t believe the effort it took to transport all of these aquariums here and carving tuna into the shape of Pierce Winslow was no easy feat either. When asked why he was so passionate against dolphin porn he said. “Oh no, I love Dolphin porn. Can’t get enough of the stuff. Actually, I have a subscription to Blow Hole. I just hate the Discord ever since they published that piece about how I was the founder of The White Elders for Twilight fan club, or T.W.I.T.s. And I’m still really pissed about that Harry Potter-jammies post while watching Day of the Dolphins. A shred of decency, that’s all I ask of these clowns.”

I did get one quote from our CEO to wrap this story up, “If anything is damaged in or around our property I’m stringing you looney tunes up! I’ll admit this protest looks worse than the Ukraine thing…well, at least it does from my iPad by the pool.”

Religion Added to DSM-V

Alex Bone

Collapsing Shack, AZ—In an unexpected move, the authors of the new DSM-V, which provides an overview of the many different types of mental illnesses and soup recipes, have decided to add religious disorders to its Axis-II category.

Psychiatrist David Cardonis said, “Axis-II personality disorders such as anti-social tendencies, histrionics, and Fox Television Viewing (FTV) now have some new siblings. We psychiatrist types feel that fundamental religious thought fits in nicely with the other existing disorders from this category.”

The sub-diagnoses added include:

1. Pentacaustic Personality Disorder (PPD)

2. Rational-denial Syndrome (RDS)

3. Obsessive-Confessional Character Pathology (OCCP)

4. Repetitive Flagellation Psychosis (RFP)

5. Crucifixion Dependence (CD)

6. Borderline Evolutionary Functioning (BEF)

7. Post-catechistic Stress Disorder (PCSD)

8. Archangel-typal Personality Disorder (ATPD)

9. Paranormal Personality Disorder (PPD)

10. Major Repressive Disorder (MRD)

11. Genuflexia Nervosa (GN)

12. Orthodoxicosis permanentalis (OP)

13. Reality Deficit Hyper-rigidity Disorder or RDHD (primary Biblical subtype vs. primary Koranic subtype or the yet to be discovered combined variant)

Dr. Sterling Hogbein, of the Hogbein Institute and Dry Cleaning, added, “Some of the hard data on these diagnoses are pretty suspect, as the subjects included only a few nuns and a homeless person, but that shouldn’t stop the progress of labeling people for ease of billing,” said Dr. Hogbein.

The religious right was far less sedate. The Revered Mark “Man-Mountain” Conway spat these words in my face and I was later diagnosed with hepatitis. “This will not stand! We have nothing in common with inflexible individuals that repeat formulas that have failed thousands of times.”

He then repeated that sentence for about an hour before adding:

“We only avoid all evidence that points toward facts out of a primal fear of change. We have evolved beyond the need for facts and we have learned to ignore any data that contradicts our beliefs. Oh, wait, we don’t believe in evolving. Crap.”

Jack Primus was hiding from the cops in my basement and agreed to be interviewed as long as I didn’t dial that last 1.

“I worked as a tech in a psych ward back in the day,” said Primus, “before Vile Darken turned the clients into hopping giant slugs, so I suppose I can diagnose individuals as well as anyone. And although I’d love to break Dr. Cardonis over my knee after he dropped me into that pool filled with flesh eating otters, I have to agree with him on this one. The only humans more nuts than people cursed with Religiosity are those who believe Republicans are good at balancing budgets. Oh, wait, I’m being told they’re the same people…never mind.”

As a result of the recognition of these new disorders, psych wards across the country are expecting a huge influx of new consumers. The state of Arizona immediately responded to the increased need for services by cutting mental health provider’s budgets in half.

On the upside, if my in-laws get to uppity at our next holiday meal, I can probably have them committed. I think I’ll go with Rational-denial Syndrome.

Obama Sells Arizona Back to Mexico

Alex Bone

Collapsing Shack, AZ—In an unexpected move, President Obama sold the entire state of Arizona back to Mexico. Many around the beltway feel the move was politically motivated, but Obama claims it’s, “All due to logistics. Immigrants will have a much tougher time sneaking into our country now that the Grand Canyon divides Mexico and the United States.”

When others questioned the move, the president replied, “The only good part of Arizona was Sedona, which ended up completely overrun by New Age extremists. And the rest of the place is just dust and cactus plants. Let those gun totting, ATV driving, crawdad loving red necks be someone else’s problem. One less red state isn’t going to hurt anybody.”

Vice President Joe Biden added, “Arizona has always been more trouble than its worth and it’s so damn hot. You can fry an egg on your forehead and that’s more dangerous than texting while driving. Let those retirees soak up someone else’s dime.

The White House in not talking about how much they sold the state for. But after I cornered an Obama intern, bought her a dozen drinks, and cleaned her apartment, she said the entire state went for three dozen beef and green chili tamales.

College students in the surrounding states are also excited about this change. One young man said “Woo, yeah yeah woo. Drinking age is now only eighteen and I’m still only a few hours from a Rocky Mountain high.”

Proponents of this idea include AZ resident and Tea Bagger, Max Blohotaire, “I admit it won’t change my neighborhood much, but what about my guns? And I sure as hell hope those Mexicans won’t be expecting me to pay any taxes to help with their education. Hating kids is one of the reasons I moved to Arizona in the first place.”

The southwestern branch of The Daily Discord might also be in jeopardy.  “When Winslow needed to save money for his second jet, he forced us to move out here,” explained head writer, Mick Zano. “He also didn’t want us attending the staff Christmas party anymore, after ‘the incident’. He also wanted to keep Alex Bone from always breaking into his house, stealing all his food, and passing out in his bathtub wearing his wife’s clothing.”

“I believe Winslow moved us out here for the cheap rent. He got a sweet deal on a one room shack without air conditioning that overlooks a mining till. Oh, and he also wanted to keep Tony Ballz from chasing after his daughters.”

When I asked my colleague, Mick, how this Mexico thing might impact the Discord, he replied, “Well, we’ll probably have more stories about beans, I suppose.”

Some of the major cities in Arizona are already receiving more Mexican sounding names. Tombstone will now be called “Place where gun happy gringos shoot each other,” and Yuma is now, “It’s way too hot to live in this shithole.” Phoenix is “El Loco Diablo” and Flagstaff will be hence forth known as “What’s this white stuff? I thought Arizona was a desert?” Granted, Flagstaff has a long name but we’ll keep working on a shorter designation.

President Obama added, “This is a pilot project. We hope to sell the rest of the southwest to Mexico, shortly. There’s no more water there anymore anyway. Due to global warming the area can no longer sustain life, so I want to make these sales before these states completely depreciate.”

Tobacco Lobbyists Introduce Spokesman Kenny the Crawdad

Alex Bone

Collapsing Shack, AZ—In an attempt to increase cigarette and chewing tobacco sales to children, the Tobacco Industry revealed its plan to introduce its new spokesman, Kenny the Crawdad. This smiling cartoonish caricature of a smoking lobster-like-thing is already slated for television, children’s magazines, and billboards across our great nation.

Tobacco Lobbyist Paul Maul said, “For too long we’ve suffered from decreased sales as our older consumers are dying off in droves from lung cancer to emphysema to that other bad one. It’s really sad, for our stocks.”

When I pointed out that advertising for children to smoke was made illegal decades ago, Paul blew a thick puff of oily smoke into my face. “We’re talking about Congress here, Bone. A few well-placed brib…er, contributions, and we’re back in the Salem again. After all the free cartons I passed around our Capitol Building, hell, that’s what this government shutdown is about. It’s one big smoke break. I even got cigarette taxes eliminated, go Teabaggers!”

Kenny the Crawdad’s catch phrases are already cropping up in playgrounds everywhere. Mr. Maul shared some of them with me, “Come on kids, smoking is cool! If you don’t smoke you’re gay. Don’t just screw, chew! No smokes, no sex. I love that last one because it’s true. I mean, what are you supposed to do after sex? Talk? Give me break…a smoke break. Besides, talking just leads to arguments.”

Apparently, lobbyists are not stopping there. Kenny has become so popular he is being employed by other companies and lobbyists. Maul shared some of these as well, “Condoms are for queers! You never lose when you’re pounding booze.  Sex is a great way to make new friends and a few extra bucks. Drugs are fun, home work is not! Playing outside is only for poor kids. Animals suck. Littering is cool,” and of course, “Stealing is the new crack.” Maul laughed which triggered a productive coughing fit, “Remember Flo from Progressive? You won’t after Kenny the Crawdad hits the scene.”

When I asked if these new slogans were a tad insensitive, Maul threw a zippo lighter at my face. “What do you want in your community meth or menthol labs!”

I don’t know what that even means, exactly, but the interview ended as I needed to stop the bleeding. Meanwhile, nay sayers are saying “nay” but Kenny’s growing popularity is thwarting any do-gooder mounted backlash (DGMB). But as Kenny would say. “Giving up is fine, kids, as long as you still have a valid medical marijuana card.”

New DSM-V Adds Religion As a Funde-Mental Disorder

Alex Bone

Collapsing Shack, AZ—The authors of the fifth edition of the Diagnostic Statistical Manuel for psychiatry, which provides summaries and outlines for all mental illnesses, added religion to its Axis-II category. This area was originally dedicated exclusively to sociopaths like Hannibal Lechter, or histrionic-types like CNN’s Nancy Grace.

Doctor Sterling Hogbein, of the Hogbein Institute and Lube, said, “Many people already suffer from Axis-II disorders like Borderline Personality Disorder, Anti-Social Personality Disorder, and Discord Staffers’ We’re Out Of F-ing Coffee Again Syndrome. But now, thanks to some new disorders, there’s even more shit hitting the psychiatrist’s couch. Now I can make money off the faithful! Ten Our Fathers, five Hail Marys and what is your primary insurance carrier, sir?”

The DSM-V has also added several fundamental sub-diagnoses. These new Mental Illnesses include but are not limited to:

Pentacaustic Personality Disorder (PPD), Rational Denial Syndrome (RDS), Obsessive-confessional Character Pathology (OCCP), Repetitive Flagellation Psychosis (OUCH), Crucifixion Dependence, Borderline Evolutionary Functioning (CDBEF), Reality Deficit Hyper-rigidity Disorder (RDHD), primary Biblical subtype vs. primary Koranic subtype or the yet to be discovered combined variant), Post-Catechistic Catatonia (PCC), Archangel-typal Personality Disorder,  Paranormal Parable Personality Disorder (also known colloquially as Burning Bush Batshit Syndrome), Major Repressive Disorder (MRD),  Genuflexia Nervosa (GN), Orthodoxicosis-permanentalis (this last one is only in the ICD-10 as it was snubbed by the DSM folks. Thankfully it will be covered by your medical providers under the Affordable Care Act).

And, finally, Sunday Morning Hyposomnia (SMH). This condition is easily treatable by skipping church, sleeping in, and then watching cartoons.

“Some of the hard data on these diagnoses are pretty suspect (just a few nuns and a homeless person) but that shouldn’t stop the progress of labeling people for the ease of billing Insurances!”

—Dr. Sterling Hogbein

The religious right adamantly protested this obvious attempt to marginalize the angry and the wrong.

Pastor Prime of the First Church of Galactica said, “This will not stand! We have nothing in common with inflexible individuals that simply repeat formulas. Most data contradicts a belief system we have fostered endlessly through repeating bullshit. Most data contradicts a belief system we have fostered endlessly through repeating bullshit. Most data—” (cut)

As a result of all these new juicy billable disorders, behavioral health providers are expecting a huge influx of new consumers. So the state governments from those square states have immediately responded to the increased need for services by cutting mental health provider’s budgets in half. On the upside, if your in-laws get too uppity at our next holiday meal, you can probably have them committed.

Discord Faces Hostile Invertebrate Takeover

Alex Bone

Collapsing Shack, AZ—Once upon a time companies and major corporations were only owned by humans, or their close cousins like The Discord staff. Not anymore. The Discord Tower has been purchased by the Crawdad Alliance. They plan to gut the structure and fill it with a murky swamp water, which according to staff, “Really shouldn’t be much different.”

Earlier today America’s Western Crawdad Warfront Against the Retarded Discord (A.W.C.W.A.R.D.) has purchased a controlling share of Discord stock, making their sinister plan not only possible but inevitable. A.W.C.W.A.R.D.’s spokesperson Kenny the Crawdad was available for comment. “It was surprising how cheap the stocks were going for. We were able to purchase 51% of the Discord stocks for an old dead catfish and half a bag of Cheetos. Now all we need to do is move in, fire those incompetent Discord writers, and start our reign of terror. I’d like to stuff those bastards into their own damn crawdad traps and force them to listen to Justin Beiber’s new hit “Yig is a Scaly Pig.”

The Discord’s Alex Bone said, “They forget that we’ve relocated our base of operations to Arizona where killing crawdads is not only legal but encouraged. Transporting crawdads is also illegal. So if they can’t reach us, they can’t fire us.”

In an unprecedented move, Bone, Zano, and Ballz destroyed all the company phones and computers. “No emails means no pink slip,” explained Zano, who has used such tactics successfully in the past. “No pink slip means another full day of napping, drinking coffee, and then leaving the office around 11.”

I asked Ballz how the Discord would be able to function without computers to produce their articles and he replied, “Bah Meh MEH!” and then stormed off, mumbling like a sailor.

Around noon, I hurried to call Zano back to the office. Against state regulations, hordes of the involved fungi known as the Migo were using the Fort Lowell Observatory as a launching point to send thousands of quivering crawdads toward the Flagstaff Discord Tower in attempt to claim their prize. The police were called, but were forced to stand down.

Captain John Mitchum explained, “You see, it’s against Arizona law to transport live crawdads, but these here crawdads are all dead zombie-like things and, thankfully, still delicious.”

Quickly realizing there is no law against killing undead crawfish, I hurried to crush the small invertebrates into a stagnant mash. It took forever. I was almost late for beer-thirty, but I obliterated the undead invertebrate threat. Did you see Pacific Rim yet? It was kind of like that but we didn’t have any tech and our enemy was small dead crawdads instead of colossal inter-dimensional monsters. Other than that, it was exactly like it.

Meanwhile, we’re trying to syphon all the water out of Discord Tower but the whole place still smells like shit. So we’re all currently camping out in Cokie McGrath’s living room and using her laptop—the one she needs for college papers and posts—to write this update. She’ll be fine. She can start her twenty page term paper, that’s due tomorrow, after we finish these Mother Road ales and look up the new dolphin swimsuit issue in Blow-Hole Magazine.

Hey, Cokie? The growler is empty again, do you mind?

Taser Parties: Tase Me Again, Bro!

Alex Bone

Collapsing Shack, AZ—There was a time when a parent’s primary concern involved worrying whether their children might drive too fast, eat too much sugar, or vote Republican. Then, thanks in part to the Ghetto Shaman, drug use and teen pregnancies exploded. Then this last generation started planking, idolizing jackass stunts, and joining crawdad cults. Those issues pale in comparison to this new youth trend; I am talking about the dreaded Taser Party! 

The youth of today are purchasing tasers by the thousands, but instead of carrying them to protect themselves from muggers, rapists, and Jehovah’s Witnesses, they are using them on each other for shocks and giggles. Despite the fact that tasering a person can lead to heart attacks, incontinence, erectile dysfunction and dry mouth, many kids are jumping on this bandwagon and shocking each other silly.

I caught up with William Lynn, owner of ‘Shock Till You Drop’, and he shared with me his teen pitch: “Bored, not sure what to do? Are underage drinking and meth finally losing their thrill? Is casual unprotected sex just becoming the same ol’ same ol’? Well, then why not plan a Taser Party? Charge up one of these little babies and tase your friend in the neck when he’s not looking. If he doesn’t like it, just tase him a few more times until he does. It’s hard to enact revenge when you’re unconscious. Don’t forget two for one Tasedays and think of the money you’ll save on electro convulsive therapy!”

When I pointed out that tasering was very painful and potentially fatal, he tased me in the face and threw me into the basement. Then he kept saying, “It puts the electrodes on its skin or it gets the hose again.”

For a week I was forced to eat take-out and perform unnatural acts with his homeopathic taser collection. He let me go only when I agreed to accompany him on a whirlwind tour of the southern states to help him sell tasers, dart guns, and condoms full of formaldehyde outside of the public middle schools. “Good honest work,” he called it.

One concerned parent said, “I’ve seen a lot of strange things in my day, but when the laughter of children is replaced by screams of terror as the interior of households light up like a super cell thunder cloud, I just don’t know what to think. Why can’t they just do a line of blow and have underaged sex like we used to do? I’m now hearing of youngsters tossing toasters into bathtubs while their friends are bathing. They believe it’s all good fun, but think about all the money their parents spent on those appliances. Do we really need kids chewing through our laptop cords just to get a buzz?”

Increasing the warning labels has had little noticeable effects on this disturbing trend, even when all electrical devices were covered with statements like:

Friends Don’t Let Friends Tase Their Nuts

Electricity Will Make You Stupid, Stupid

Drugs Not Jolts

This Is Your Brain On Current

President Obama has even gotten involved and pledges to lower the age of consent to 12 and make all drugs legal in the U.S., provided children “stop playing Taser Tag.” 

Is there any hope for America’s children? Will we become a country of Seizure Heads and Shock Jockeys? President Obama has a direct message for today’s youth on this matter, “Get out there and hump something, kids! Just not a toaster.”

Crawdads Protest Outside of Discord Tower

Alex Bone

Philadelphia, PA—The Daily Discord Tower is under siege at this hour by America’s Western Crawdad Warfront Against the Repulsive Daily Discord (A.W.C.W.A.R.D.D.). CEO of the Discord, Pierce Winslow, is currently holed up in his ivory tower. He’s trying to electrify the outside of the building to thwart the attacking crawdads as he apparently “saw it once on a Star Trek episode.”

Kenny the Crawdad, best known for his posters promoting pre-adolescent smokers, said A.W.C.W.A.R.D.D. is gearing up to, “Use any means at our disposal to fight against Alex Bone and his crawdad hating lackeys at the Discord. And remember kids, smoking is cool.”

Dr. William Lynn, a spokesman for the crawfish and advocate for mandatory euthanasia for the ugly, said, “Alex Bone has not only been boiling my clients alive and then eating their flesh, he is also very vocal in his tirades against these peaceful aquatic invertebrates.”

Lynn told the press, “First off, we would like to see Alex Bone fired from the Discord and then pinched really hard over and over again for a week. The crawdads want him to be stripped naked, covered in butter, and then forced to wear a crawdad suit for a month while holding a sign stating how much he hates all snakes and Yig.”

This just in:

The crawdads have grown bored and are scurrying away from the Discord Tower at this hour—as Mr. Winslow took his fourth two week vacation this month and isn’t even there.

As many readers are already aware, we need to be preparing for humanity’s final battle against the tripartite of evil, which is the Dark Alliance between the Crawdads, Migo, and Zombies. There is further information located here and here on this important matter.

Crawdads are an invasive species destroying ecosystem after ecosystem. Hell, they’re worse than Republicans. They need to be stopped! Do your part, Citizen. Get some nets and purchase some bulk butter at Costco. Don’t worry if you don’ have a license, just explain to the park ranger you are fighting the good fight for Yig and for all of mankind.

And remember:

Service guarantees citizenship
Service Guarantees Citizenship

Alex Bone’s Get Poor Quick Scheme

Alex Bone

Flagstaff, AZ (aka, Poverty with a View)—Most people in America and the majority of the rest of the world are striving to be rich, but they’re overlooking the truly wonderful advantages of being flat broke. For instance, you will have more free time because your schedule will not be bogged down with things like trips, vacations, shopping, or eating. Things like gaining too much weight—no problem. And no one will ever asks you to borrow money! Hell, they won’t even ask you to babysit for fear you might eat their children. 

For instance, Mick Zano never said, “It’s your turn to buy a round, Bone.” It’s never happened.

But how can one become poor quickly, Mr. Bone?

Great question. It’s as if I’m actually asking the question only in italics form. Sure, anyone can become addicted to meth and have their life go down the shitter in a few weeks, but then you end up needing money to support that pesky habit, not to mention the dental work. Some people are purists and when they go broke they want to make sure they do it right. For these individuals, I have written the first in my ninety book series on how to go broke in ten easy steps—without spending a dime!

Sounds good so far, Mr. Bone! Go on.

Step one: Get into as much debt as possible for about a year or so. Hell, you might as well have one last hoorah, right?

Step Two: Stop paying your phone bill. Why bother having a phone at all? You will soon be losing all of your friends, and family anyway, and why talk to creditors? It’s not like they’re pleasant.

Step Three: Consider letting your other bills lapse as well and since you won’t have money for cable or new books to read, electricity of any kind seems superfluous.

Step Four: Remember, if you are this poor, your chances of finding a mate are pretty slim, but again, think of all the extra time and money that will save on the dating process! It’s time to find a new hobby anyway, like drinking.

Step Five: You need to be productive with all of this newfound free time. You don’t want to get drunk and just stare at a tree. Although, I do know some people who enjoy that. So why not build your own shelter?! Just because you are broke it doesn’t mean you have to be one of those losers living in a box. You are not a loser! You are just a nearly penniless, single person without friends, family, or acquaintances. Some pallet wood is a good place to start then sell the last of your possessions to buy rechargeable power tools. You can always charge them up in the library (a place where all those saps that still pay taxes frequent).

Step Six: Start stealing as much as possible. I am not talking about shoplifting as much as grabbing crap that is one degree from being thrown away. Look for things dumped in alleys and behind businesses. Or you can start a hobby, like collecting condiment packets. They also double as comfortable pillow stuffers too. Just be careful, if one breaks as it can be a bad scene. My boxmate wrongly called 911 one night, which can get expensive.

Step Seven: Now that you have a comfy little place, make sure you have a wood stove and then start burning anything you can get your hands on. Hair, magnets, family photos, murder victims. Nothing should be too good to spare from the privilege of keeping you warm at night. A simple truck tire can keep a family warm long enough for them to develop cancer.

Step Eight: Get a sidekick. It might be hard to believe after looking at yourself in the rest room mirror of the gas station, but there is always someone worse off. Just find this mega-loser and make him or her your servant. Hell, you worked hard to get where you are, no need to bother yourself with the day to day details like scraping your burning socks off the wood stove or cleaning last night’s puke off your moldy wall to wall egg cartoon carpet.

Okay, now I have a place to live and more free time than ever, so what now?

Step Nine: Great question. It’s time to start shopping for an enabler. Yep, I know it’s hard to believe, but there are plenty of codependent people out there who are so insecure with themselves that they might even be willing to date a scary creep like you. Let them pay for everything. Hell, you could even get a warm shower after a bout of sympathy sex. Warning: Breaking up with homeless people can be a great blow to their self-esteem and that’s what makes it so hilarious. 

Step Ten: Now, you are ready, finally ready, to get a job writing for The Daily Discord, because you know that is how I got my start and look where I am today! And every Christmas Mr. Winslow sends us all these pen sets that turn out to be pencils. What could be cooler than that? So I’ll see you at the stinky section of the library’s internet desks.

Now go buy my book! But not too many of you at once. I don’t want to have to buy Zano a beer.