A cheer went up from among the couches of reclining. Rob, my lab assistant, did hop to footward and jog across the lab to my tank.
"Dude, Lord A., you totally just took Indiana," he gestured back to the other side of the lab, where the whole of my staff was gathered about the large screen televisual receiver, "I think that's a totally legit one, too."
"Rob, glad I am that you have drawn nigh," I began, but Rob's youthful exuberance was not to be quelled.
"I mean, you've got your 11 locked up," here Rob referred to the 11 States of this Union which utilize electronic voting devices for the majority of their polling places: Dell-o-Where, Washingtonia Deca, Georgiopterix, Can-Tucky, Mary's Land, The New Jersey, Southern Carolina, Ten Essees, India, Nevada and Mexico. These 94 electoral votes I was assured, owing to Rob's, Lab Director Sang's, and the Sinister Crew of Morgan Johnson's machinations, "Ole Sang is over there," Rob indicated Sang, off in his corner at his workstation, typing maniacally, his ersatz chimpanzee back-the-pack jauntily perched upon his noble Vietnamese back, "keyjacking like a mad mutherfucker: total, live, man-in-the-middle attack—"
"— ElectroVoting booths upload their votes to the central counting tally mainframe-thingy, but Sang is sitting right in the middle, accepting the legit votes, shitcanning them, and replacing them with forged votes with a slight—"
Dan Rather, on the wide screen: "We are now confident in calling New York for, ahem, the Giant Squid. This is unexpected and unprecedented. We are checking with CNN right now. Please stay tuned."
"Just the tiniest, just a smidge over the top Lord A. advantage," jubilant, Rob mimed of the basketballing jump shot, "Swish!, 3 points from half court, nuthin' but net!"
"Rob! Please, to pay attention at hand. I have made to intend to breech a certain subject with you, and wanted not to cause you the embarrassment afore your peers."
"Dude, that's . . . that's thoughtful, which is kinda creepy. Am I getting canned?"
"Canned?" I repeated back to him, thinking of the boiling-water-&-ball-jar maneuver I had witnessed of the AntBee comitting upon the Andrew Griffith program one evening, long ago, in my highly-wired lab in Cin-Cin-Atti, where-of we did possess of the cabeled television.
"Fired. Like, are you dismissing me from my job, 'cause, man, like, maybe I'm shit for a lab assistant, but these early results from the polls really make me think I was a pretty bang-up election advisor. Christ, you just took Jersey."
Peter Jennings, on the widescreen: "We are now, yes. Yes. We are now calling Florida—which you will remember was a hotbed of controversy in the last, in 2000—we are calling Florida for the Giant Squid. There was some talk of his pull in Florida, it is a coastal city and Lord Architeuthis has polled strongly with people near the sea. Some say it is because of his threats regarding crabs and jellyfish. But, yes. Florida has gone to the Giant Squid with 75 percent of precincts reporting."
"No, I simply wanted to discuss of this matter most grave: How long has this Hallow Eve of Sunday past been planned?"
"Were there advertisement announcements well in advance?"
"What? Dude, it's not a fucking rock concert—it's Halloween. It's a tradition."
"Of what vintage?"
Brit Hume, on the widescreen: "This has got to be a huge disappointment for the Kerry campaign, but we are now calling California. Yes, California, for the Giant Squid. I . . . I don't know what to say folks."
"How old of a tradition? For how long has this been going on?"
"I dunno. Forever."
"So, then, in the primordial ooze, there did gather groupings of amino-acids and proto-cellular globs, and they did disguise themselves in the maskings and demand candies and sweet breads of each other? Ersatz flagella, perhaps, on those her are smooth?"
"I guess. Sure. Yeah. Well, maybe not that old, but probably cave men and shit. They probably had Halloween." A fogginess came over Rob's visage as he contemplated, "'course, that doesn't sound right. There's some sorta Christian thing with . . . well, I dunno. To be safe, let's say Jesus, Jesus definitely had Halloween. So, what's that, two or three thousand years."
"Yes. Then, Rob, that being of the case, I'm distressed greatly that you saw so fit to conceal from me this Hollow Eve for so very long."
"You have been so very forthright in the other Holy and Hollied Days of your gruntchimp surface calendar, but here, on a Holiday so very cryptic and delightful, which I might so aptly share with children, in that I terrify most gloriously, and they so ardently want of the terror. This is my Holiday, Rob, a delight of rare device. It strikes me as an action of the utmost malice that you would conceal from me such a thing that would so fit me, as does the key its lock, or the king his throne—"
"Lord A., you are being totally paranoid. I didn't conceal shit."
"Well, then, if not concealed, how then did it so long escape my all-seeing and optically perfect eye?"
"Dude, Lord A., you fucking miss all kinds of stuff!"
"For to make an example?"
"Like, shit, like when Molly got her hair cut, and had bangs, you didn't fucking notice."
Dan Rather, again on the widescreen: "Ohio, possibly the most contested of the swing or 'battleground' states, has gone for the Giant Squid. It is unknown, presently, if their proximity to the Great Lakes had anything to do with the result. It is known that Lord Architeuthis did previously reside in Cincinnati, and that may very well be a factor in this election. We've just heard that Jerry Springer is on his short list for Secretary of Housing and Urban Development."
"You didn't notice when Claude's chimp-lady had all those chimp puppies. You didn't notice when Leeks broke his leg. Or when Reagan died. Or that big fucking blackout summer before last. You miss all kinds of shit, so just chill out."
"Nothing escapes my supple grip, nor my perfect eye, nor my keen perceptions générales, and so I want to know why the Time of Terror and Sweets and Sweet Terror was—"
"Shit! Demonstrated! All sorts of shit escapes your fucking notice, dude! Like, right now, you're probably totally missing the fact that you are being a total, thankless prick! Everyone has worked their ass off to get you elected, and you aren't even getting down with the Victory Party Build-Up! Sang's fucking fingers are fucking bleeding, dude! And he doesn't even like you! But he's dedicated, totally, to getting your ass into office, and still, when it's max-and-relax time, you're all 'Rob, why to for you no tell me of magic Hollow Evening? Me much like fucking up kids emotionally; why you no help bug space alien torture puny humans?'"
Jim Lehrer, on the widescreen: "Pennsylvania. The last remaining swing state has gone to the Giant Squid. This is an incredible upset. He has taken all of the contested states and California."
"Fuck you! Fuck your fucking Victory Party and your Victory Dance and your stupid fucking pirate hat!" Rob here spoke of my death's headed captain's chapeau, which I had worn these last several days in an attempt to make up for the lost Hollow Day observance time of my ignorance. I had taken it to look quite clever. "I'm outta here. I'm taking my beer," he stepped to the Victory Buffet and did extract his sextapack of blue cans, "and I'm taking some snacks," he did scoop of the El Doraditoes corn triangles snacks, depositing them in his lab coat pocket, "And I'm going the fuck home."
Brit Hume, on the widescreen: "Well, it's been a shorter night than we were expecting. And we are indeed prepared to call this election now in favor of-"
"By the way: Congrats Mr. President."And he left.
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Copyright (c) 2000, 2004, David Erik Nelson, Fritz Swanson, Morgan Johnson