In defence of Space Chase.

I am appalled and disappointed by the response to my web cartoon series Space Chase. I have been accused of plagiarism and attempting to cash in on a certain well-known science fiction franchise on which Space Chase is based.

Yes, the hero is Duke Starswimmer, a young man similar to Luke Skywalker. Yes, his mentor is Elder Wan, inspired by Obi-Wan Kenobi. Yes, the wise teacher is Soga, which bears great resemblance to Yoda. Like Star Wars, Space Chase is an epic story of a battle between rebels and the empire, but under no circumstances am I even trying to rip off the entire Star Wars franchise here.

There are differences in the Space Chase story that sets it far apart from Star Wars. Instead of the Force, the characters practice the Strength that not only moves heavy objects with ease, but it also boosts one’s extrasensory abilities to make them keenly aware of any hidden dangers not normally perceived by normal senses alone.

Also different from Star Wars are the characters. Duke’s parents are both alive throughout the story as is Elder Wan. The sole fatality is Soga, who is apparently killed by an Empirical officer, although he may have executed a last-second maneuver to transport himself to safety. I left that up to the Internet community to decide what really happened to Soga. Instead I get accused of ripping off the Star Wars storyline and its characters.

Never mind that as the story progresses, Duke and his rebels destroy not one but two more battle stations before proceeding to the final battle at Triangle City, the very heart of the Empire. I think it is here that Space Chase truly takes on a life of its own, yet the hate mail I have received seems to indicate otherwise. Yes, Star Wars was an inspiration for Space Chase, but under no circumstances am I even trying to rewrite it. Why go after me as if I’m trying to deface the face of Star Wars?

Why not go after Mel Brooks for daring to make “Spaceballs”? While you’re at it, how about Clint Eastwood for making “Space Bullets”? Or Rob Zombie’s “Space Bowels”? The list goes on and on, yet I’m the worst of them all. Shame on me for cashing in on the Star Wars phenomenon when others can do the same thing and get away with it.

In any case, I have voluntarily removed all 136 episodes of Space Chase from this site and am closing my online store, but not without putting everything on clearance, so if you want a Space Chase T-shirt or some action figures, now’s your chance to get them at insane prices. They’ll be collector’s items some day and maybe then I’ll have the last laugh.

Dark days ahead.

So here we are, one year into the terrifying presidency of Al Bleetworm, 90 years old and the oldest man ever elected. Come to think of it, the only reason he even won the election was because his opponent was many, many times worse. Dan Vilan was constantly accused of fraud and corruption yet constantly played it down despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary. Sure enough, Vilan’s life of crime finally caught up with him as he now rots away in prison.

President Bleetworm has yet to reveal his so-called “Vision for America” that was to restore our country back to the prosperity everyone is so hungry for. Apparently it involves severing ties with our allies and ensuring our isolation. Some vision. I’m sure I speak for everyone when I ask, does Bleetworm even have eyes?

Just look at him. Constantly squinting with his oversized eyelids and barely looking awake at his press conferences. When standing at the podium in silence, it looks like he’s sleeping. Or dead.

Even more terrifying is Vice President Pal Hefford. He has absolutely no experience in politics yet was chosen as Bleetworm’s running mate when he was spotted working the garbage cans on the street during his garbage truck’s morning run. That’s right, our Vice President is a garbage man. He may not understand the Constitution but he sure knows the location of the nearest garbage dump.

So now we have to turn to the wives for signs of assurance. First Lady Madge Bleetworm may appear cheerful and hospitable but stories have emerged that she spends hours in the kitchen baking pies and cookies for herself and no one else. She even keeps a cleaver nearby to discourage anyone from stealing. That’s not exactly assuring.

Oh, and Second Lady Flowerpot Hefford looks like someone still living in the 1960’s. She is completely out of tune and out of touch. Come to think of it, she acts like we’re still living in the 1960’s while speaking nonstop of flower power and having a nice day. Sure enough, it was her idea to have the walls of the White House lined with smiley face wallpaper and proclaiming Mondays to be “Have a Nice Day Day”. How is that reassuring?

Our country desperately needs competent leadership and assurance that there are brighter days ahead. We have none of that right now. Our so-called President seems intent on making our dark days even darker. We must continue to remain vigilant and strong for the next three years so we can unseat Al Bleetworm and send him back to the nursing home where he belongs.

All in a day’s work.

At my job I work as an order puller and spend most of the day filling online orders. One day I was filling an order for a bucket and some light sensors. There were plenty of buckets in stock but the store was out of light sensors, so the next step was to call the customer to let them know before processing the refund.

When I called the customer I reached their voicemail, and I left a message that went something like this:

I am calling about your online order. We don’t have any light sensors stock, so I can give you a refund. However, your bucket is ready.

I found it very difficult to leave the rest of the message without laughing.

The Case of the Framed Clown, Part 15.

Skipping the first 14 parts and ahead to the good stuff…

Eth and Bub rushed back to the circus camp where the police were already in attendance and taking statements regarding the murder. To make matters worse, the Strong Man was giving his statement in a final attempt to pin the crime on the Clown.

“Yes sir, last night I saw the Clown enter the Trapeze Lady’s mobile home and moments later I heard screaming and the sound of bludgeoning. Moments later I saw him leave, bloodied and out of breath, desperate to return to his home unnoticed.”

“Interesting,” Bub spoke up. “You saw all that in the dark, moonless night without any lights?”

The Strong Man quickly became defensive. “Just what are you kids insinuating?”

“We may be kids,” Eth said, “but this case is literally child’s play. When we came to your mobile home looking for clues this morning, we saw the weights on the floor but no rod. Yet you said you spent the morning bench pressing and lifting weights. Interesting you can do that with no rod.”

“Instead of spending the morning lifting weights as you claimed,” Bub added, “you were outside roaming in the field looking for something, specifically the rod you used to murder the Trapeze Lady last night. You attempted to dispose of the evidence by flinging it into the field, but we found it this morning.”

The Strong Man was stunned into silence and quietly sat down. Staring at the ground, he heaved one final sigh before admitting to the crime. “You got me there,” he muttered. “I may be the world’s strongest man but I’m also the world’s dumbest criminal. Yeah, I did it. I heard the Trapeze Lady was next in line to inherit a fortune from her late uncle’s estate and thought I could get that fortune for myself. But I would have gotten away with it had it not been for you meddling kids.”

Moments later the Strong Man was handcuffed and escorted to one of the police cars, leaving the Clown overcome with relief. “You guys did it,” he smiled at Eth and Bub, “I should have never doubted you in the first place. What can I do to repay you?”

“Don’t worry about it,” Eth smiled back. “As they always say, the show must go on.”

With that, the two boys returned to the trail to resume their walk through the woods as they had originally planned.

The End

The Aisles of the Forbidden.

Don’t go to aisle 47, sir, don’t go to aisle 47

The customer ventured to aisle 47
Then the lights went out and the silence quick to deaden
Now the customer’s gone but he didn’t go to heaven

Don’t go to aisle 48, sir, don’t go to aisle 48

The customer proceeded to aisle 48
I really tried to stop him, but it was much too late
He wound up as the main course on a giant dinner plate

Don’t go to aisle 49, sir, don’t go to aisle 49

The customer insisted on aisle 49
The next thing that unfolded was anything but fine
He was digitized and then transferred one byte at a time

Don’t go to aisle 50, sir, don’t go to aisle 50

I didn’t even watch as he entered aisle 50
The details were too sketchy and the demise rather iffy
That was when I quit my job and ran out in a jiffy

The legend of Locust Lane.

Recently I went for a long bike ride that took me through the nearby town of Lake Park. Along the way I passed a vacant lot with a very antiquated sign standing along the road. Locust Lane was its name and I sensed it contained quite a bit of history, if only I knew what it was.

The sign marking the entrance to Locust Lane.

After I returned home, I uploaded the above picture to a Facebook group devoted to memories of places long since gone from the Palm Beaches. It got plenty of likes along with this reply:

Why is that horrible place still there? It’s been condemned for years, yet the County won’t touch it. I don’t blame them, though. You want to know how Locust Lane got its name? Well, I’ll tell you.

During the 1940’s a team of surveyors arrived at that very spot to start the measurements. One of the surveyors, a William Macz, stepped on a mound of dirt that triggered a flood of locusts as large as rats that ate him alive. So swift was the attack that moments later, Macz’s skeleton was seen standing upright with its jaw still gaping in terror. The other two surveyors fled the scene and never returned. They later christened the lot Locust Lane but the legend had already circulated around town to the point of the lot remaining forever vacant.

As for the giant locusts, they have never been seen again, but some suspect that they are still sleeping in their underground nest, waiting for their next unsuspecting victim to devour into giant locust shit.


Donald Trump just nailed it

For five minutes the meeting was unable to proceed due to the room filled with uproarious laughter.

“Oh man, that’s a good one!” gasped online publisher Pill Balmer.

But staff writer Hobert Rarrington remained adamant. “Think of the traffic that headline will bring to Balmer Report. I think it’s going to be the most clicked link on the entire site. Our revenue from the ads will fly through the roof!”

“But here’s the problem, though,” Balmer leaned forward. “I want our site to focus on factual reporting. It’s the one thing that separates us from the other political news sites. I don’t mind using that headline but we need facts to back it up.”

“That’s going to be tough,” Journalist Khirley Sennedy spoke up. “Trump’s been pretty much out of the public eye since he left office. He hasn’t made any public appearances anywhere, much less gave any interviews. And with him banned from the major social media sites, he can’t reach out to anyone anymore. Bummer, there’s really nothing to back up that headline.”

“Unless,” fellow journalist Sames Jullivan spoke up, “we look at ‘nailed it’ in a literal sense, as in actually using a hammer and nail to say, hang some pictures.”

“Hanging pictures? That’s news?” Balmer balked.

“At least we’ll get to use that headline.”

Donald Trump just nailed it

Nowadays former President Donald Trump stays busy by hanging pictures in the hallway of his South Florida home using none other than a hammer and some nails…

Adventure Poll #37.

Results of yesterday’s poll:

Open parachute – 0%
Recite magic spell – 0%
Do nothing and hope this is a dream – 0%

You land on the ground with such force that your life functions cease immediately. As a result your adventure has reached a tragic conclusion with the treasure forever lost. Good luck next time.

Tomorrow: A new adventure begins with a trek through a haunted house!

Happy 2021, I think.

mjbdiver> hello room!
ghost> i knew it
ralph> not again
dragon> just when 2020 couldnt get any worse
ghost> oooo
ralph> oooo
mjbdiver> well, 2020 can’t get any worse than it already is
ghost> how
ralph> how
dragon> how
mjbdiver> there’s only a few minutes left in 2020
ghost> oh
dragon> oh
*** ralph has been kicked off channel #chat by dragon (SORRY TO MAKE YOUR 2020 WORSE)
*** ralph has joined channel #chat
ralph> that was uncalled for
ghost> at least i didnt get kicked this time
*** ghost has been kicked off channel #chat by dragon (FEEL BETTER NOW?)
*** ghost has joined channel #chat
ghost> dragon you hurt my feelings
*** ghost has been kicked off channel #chat by dragon (SOWWY TO HURT YOUR FEEWINGS)
*** ghost has joined channel #chat
ghost> i didnt need that
ralph> 2020 sucked
*** ralph has been kicked off channel #chat by dragon (BIG TIME)
*** ralph has joined channel #chat
ralph> that was uncalled for
ghost> we cant say that 2020 sucked????
*** ghost has been kicked off channel #chat by dragon (NOPE)
*** ghost has joined channel #chat
ghost> dragon you hurt my feelings
ralph> i swear the rules in this chat get weirder and weirder
ghost> what do you mean
ralph> cant say sucked or talk about falling balls
*** ralph has been kicked off channel #chat by dragon (LAAAAAAAAAAA)
*** ralph has been kicked off channel #chat by dragon (DUM DUM DUMMMMM)
*** ralph has joined channel #chat
ghost> wow ralph got kicked twice
ralph> OH NO
*** ralph has been kicked off channel #chat by dragon (ONE FOR THE MONEY)
*** ralph has been kicked off channel #chat by dragon (TWO FOR THE SHOW)
*** ralph has been kicked off channel #chat by dragon (THREE TO GET READY)
*** ralph has joined channel #chat
ghost> and GO GO GO
*** ghost has been kicked off channel #chat by dragon (THATS MY LINE)
*** ghost has joined channel #chat
ghost> dragon you hurt my feelings
ralph> that was uncalled for
mjbdiver> you guys are too funny
ghost> OH NO
*** ghost has been kicked off channel #chat by dragon (HI FUNNY FACE)
*** ghost has joined channel #chat
ghost> dragon you hurt my feelings
mjbdiver> don’t worry, 2021 is going to be better
ghost> diver how do you know
ralph> 2021 a better year, yeah right
ghost> diver how do you know
ralph> yeah diver how do you know
*** ghost has been kicked off channel #chat by dragon (YEAH DIVER HOW DO YOU KNOW)
*** ghost has joined channel #chat
ghost> dragon you hurt my feelings
mjbdiver> I just know 2021 is going to be a better year
ghost> yeah right
mjbdiver> and here we go!
ralph> what
ghost> oh no its diver and his falling balls again
*** ghost has been kicked off channel #chat by dragon (BOING BOING BOING)
*** ghost has joined channel #chat
ghost> dragon you hurt my feelings
mjbdiver> 10!
ralph> here he goes again
ghost> yah diver and what comes before 10
mjbdiver> 9!
ghost> divers so smart
ralph> im going to bed
ghost> yah me too
dragon> same here
mjbdiver> 8!
ralph> 8 what?
ghost> this is going nowhere fast
mjbdiver> 7!
ralph> i dont have to put up with this anymore
mjbdiver> 6!
ghost> dragon do your stuff
mjbdiver> 5!
ralph> this is getting really annoying
ghost> this is getting really annoying
ralph> thats what i just said
mjbdiver> 4!
mjbdiver> 3!
ralph> okay dragon now
mjbdiver> 2!
ghost> dragon do it
ralph> DO IT
ralph> OH NO
*** ralph has been kicked off channel #chat by dragon (I JUST DID)
*** ralph has joined channel #chat
ralph> that was uncalled for
mjbdiver> 1!
*** You has been kicked off channel #chat by dragon (SEE YOU NEXT YEAR)