King of Creed

stapp1

Scott Stapp sat in the back of Creed’s tour bus, bouncing up and down with the bumps on the road. He was writing a heartfelt song about his love for his son while getting serviced by one of his numerous groupies. Suddenly, he had a mental block, and stared off into the distance. He tapped his pen to his notepad, steeped in deep concentration.

“Roxetta, what’s a good word that rhymes with son?” He asked the groupie at his feet.

Roxetta wiped off her mouth, and, after a few seconds of thought, said, “How about HoneyBun?”

Scott Stapp processed this for a bit, then finally shouted, “Perfect!” Roxetta beamed with pride, a wide grin plastered across her face as she looked at her hero.

Scott sternly made a motion to get back to oral sex. Scott focused his attention back on his notepad, and what would surely be a #1 record.

Before he wrote a single letter, however, both Scott and the groupie were slammed against the side of the bus, and the lights went out. The tour bus had gone off the road, and was rolling down a large hill.

Around and around they went, the floor becoming the ceiling over and over in rapid succession, all the while in complete darkness. “This must be what it was like for Mark McGrath in Sugar Ray’s I Just Wanna Fly music video,” Scott thought to himself, “God that guy got a lot of tail.” That thought turned out to be his final. The tour bus was finally stopped by a tree, which snapped the bus in half, killing everyone inside. The entire band, their managers, their groupies, the Clear Channel representatives, all dead. Rock and Roll would never be the same.

***

“God… God? We need an answer, God.” Scott Stapp heard faintly.

He opened his eyes, and was hit with blinding light. Everything around him was white. Finally, his eyes adjusted. The ground looked like it was made up of clouds. Pretty weird. He looked at his hands. They were covered in gold rings with giant rubies. And his hands were emanating light. Also Weird. Then, he felt his head. It felt weighed down by a heavy hat. He took off this hat, and found that it was a giant crown, also gold and covered in rubies.

Scott was sitting in a giant throne, more elaborate and expensive looking than even the one he had in his own house. In front of him were two angels, wearing white robes with giant white wings coming out of their backs. They were looking at Scott quizzically. Then, it came to him. He must be God or something.

“Whoa, this is just like Bruce Almighty…” Scott muttered.

“What?” one of the angels said.

“Oh, uh, nothing.”

“God, we need an answer,” the angel said, his eyebrows furrowed.

“Um, what was the question again?” Scott asked, rubbing his eyes.

“Ugh, God, alright, but this is the last time I’m explaining it,” one of the angels said, rolling his eyes. “On planet X-Z8 in galaxy Xubpuron, the Romulons are fighting the Potrorons. Which species will bring order to the Cosmic Ordinance of Plathfurox?”

“Um, the first one?” Scott said, confused.

“The Romulons? Are you sure, God? The consequences are dire; if the Ordinance of Plathfurox does not regain order, the entire galaxy of Xubpuron will collapse, killing billions upon billions of hyper-intelligent beings!”

“Yes.” Scott answered.

“Very well.” The angels said. They turned around and floated off into the distance, eventually disappearing with a twinkle of light.

“God, that was fuckin’ weird.” Scott said. His entire body ached, he felt exhuasted. “Man, I could really use a Coors Light,” he said to himself. Before he finished the sentence, however, there was a Coors Light in his hand.

“Awesome!” Scott said, cracking it open and taking a large swig. Then it finally occured to him: He was God.

***

Scott breathed heavily, his heart beat quickly with anticipation. He held a surfboard with his right arm, and was completely nude except for the giant gold crown on his head. On a white platform, floating 30 feet above a violent ocean of pizza slices, he waited nervously for a big enough wave.

After letting three or four decent sized waves go past, he spotted an enormous wave forming in the distance. The pizza slices were caving in on eachother, splattering cheese and marinara all over the place, and he could tell this would be the biggest yet. The wave looked like it was going slow, but that was only because of the enormity of it.

Scott waited in breathless premonition, and then finally the wave was directly before him. With a burst of testosterone, Scott lept from the platform, and put the surfboard below his feet.

He landed smoothly onto the wave of pizza. He faltered a bit, but then regained balance. He felt his long hair blowing in the wind. He rode along the front of the wave, and watched the wave of pizza tower over him. He was going incredibly fast. He was riding the wave.

Scott dared to do a few tricks, brushing his hand against the wave, hanging ten and spinning in a 360. It was the most fun he had ever had. He slowed a bit, and got right to where the wave was breaking. The wave made a tunnel, and he rode inside the tunnel and listened to himself scream “RIIIIGHTEEEOOOUS!” in that echoey tube.

Just when the wave was at its apex, Scott threw caution to the wind and jumped off the surfboard with a burst of joy. He was immediately swept up by the wave, and submerged. Scott opened his mouth. It was the most delicious pizza he had ever had.

***

Scott’s days were spent trying to act out the flights of fancy that were impossible while he was alive on planet earth, either because of laws of gravity or laws of human decency. He orchestrated eight-way train-crashes, did a half-court slam dunk at an all-caucasian olympics, and had a three-way with Carmen Electra and Eleanor Roosevelt, both at age 12. Nothing was off the table for Scott, and the only limits were his own creativity.

Every couple of hours, his omnipotent stunts were interrupted by one or both of the angels, who he begrudgingly learned to be named Paul and Sebastian. They usually presented a problem going on in some distant galaxy, with stars being born, alien species with hard-to-pronounce names, or anti-matter. The questions were bizarre, complicated and winding, and Scott grew tired of them usually in the first sentence. He answered them as quickly as possible, usually by saying “Yeah, do that,” or “Wipe out the blue ones.” Whatever got those two angel dudes to shut the fuck up.

Once in a blue moon, he was presented with an issue on planet Earth. Scott took relish in banning icky gay marriage in a few states, making smoking legal in bars, and filling in almost every swamp in Florida with concrete. God, swamps are so gross.

***

In a seldom-visited corner of Heaven, Seabastian and Paul met. They spoke in hushed tones, and stared at the ground as if they weren’t discussing anything of import.

“Something is up. I think it’s happened again,” Sebastian said, “it’s been thousands of years since a mixup like this.”

“Yeah, I think it’s pretty obvious,” said Paul, “I walked in on him the other day and he was dissecting a 5-year-old boy. It was pretty unsettling.”

“Should we do what we did last time?”

“I don’t think we have any other choice.” Sebastian and Paul nodded to each other, then non-challantly strolled away separately.

***

“What do you two faggots want?” Scott shouted at the Paul and Sebastian, “I’m trying to do some blow here.”

“We have a very special mission for you, God,” Sebastian said. “We need you to go back to earth.”

Scott snorted a line of cocaine, then wiped a tear that had formed in his eye. “What, you mean like Jesus?”

“Exactly like Jesus,” Paul said, smiling.

Scott thought about it for a few seconds, remembering fondly how much money Jesus had made him in the music world. “Yeah, fine.”

“Alright, God,” Sebastian said. He then waved his hand, and a golden door formed from thin air. “Just go through this door.”

“Hold on,” Scott said, then did four lines of coke consecutively. He got up from his hands and knees, stumbled, and after regaining balance, walked to the door. He rubbed his hands together vigorously, he was ready for any fucking thing, goddammit. When he opened the door, it revealed an empty, pitch-black void. He turned around and looked at the angels hesitantly.

“Don’t worry, it’s just a portal,” said Paul.

Scott walked through the doorway, and was engulfed in darkness. He could neither see nor hear anything. He shut his eyes tightly.

***

When he opened his eyes, he felt completely different. He was sitting on a giant leaf or something in the middle of a very dirty pond. He was very low to the ground.

He couldn’t see his body, it was as if his eyes were on the very top of his head. He lifted his arm, and what he saw was a huge, green, warty hand. He had come back as a toad.

Still rolling off his cocaine high, he decided to go with it. He looked around, and saw a few flies, buzzing around his head. He snapped his tongue out, and it shot out like a bullet, and reeled the fly into his mouth. It was unbelievably delicious.

Scott continued catching flies, each one more delicious than the one before it. He was having a merry old time as a toad. Just as he felt his appetite was squelched, however, He heard the noise of a giant truck, and then his entire body and all of his surroundings were covered in wet concrete. He watched the entire swamp become gray, and his entire body was covered in no time. He soon lost the ability to breath. As the concrete hardened and Scott took his last few breaths, he knew he was truly dying for our sins.

Is it a Crime to Entertain America?

rocketboy

I have received a lot of grief from both the press and public this week after my son, Raptor, stole a prototype mini jet pack I invented and flew it over 30 miles till it crash-landed in a corn field.  The media storm was immense and the entire country was glued to their televisions as firefighters and emergency workers followed the jet pack to its crashing site.  And when the wreckage uncovered that it wasn’t Raptor on that jet pack but instead was an animatronic model of Raptor, (another one of my inventions) I suddenly became Public Enemy #1.

But Raptor was safe and sound at home.  If I was truly the monster you’re making me out to be, I would have allowed three-year-old Raptor to fly the perfectly-sized mini jet pack to his death, (and believe me, he begged!)  Nay, I spent months making the jet pack remote controlled, and spent thousands of dollars making a life-like double of Raptor.  But Raptor’s safety isn’t in America’s interest, is it?

My passion has always been to reflect my version of my life to the masses, a passion that got me on MTV’s The Real World at the age of 21.  But when I was kicked off the show for faking a heart attack, my opportunity was cut short.  After the novel I wrote,  [Censored]’s a Faggot’s Pussy, failed to garner any media attention, (Salman Rushdie was exceptionally popular at the time) I decided it was in my best interest to give up my dreams and start a family.  Thus started what I like to call my Suburban Hell years.

After months of trying to figure out a career choice, I settled on Inventor.  I would spend my hours in the basement with my many contraptions while my wife Sue would work her three waitressing jobs, (she’s not pretty enough to be a stripper and too cheap to buy the surgery.)

After two years of intensive tinkering, I came up with my masterpiece:  the cellphone answering machine.  Imagine:  you’re in the bathroom, occupied, and you hear your cellphone ringing in the kitchen.  What if one of your children is in trouble or the president is calling?  You’ll never know… until now.  With my device, which can be plugged into the bottom of any Nokia 3315 produced in 2001, up to thirty seconds (minus the personalized greeting) can be recorded by the caller after 3 rings.  However, the major cellphone carriers refused to stock my product because of its size (only the size of two medium suitcases, thank you) and the fact that it only worked a third of the time (studies I conducted proved that 2/3 of phone calls are of little import.  It’s called time saving, ever heard of it?)  They also cited something called “Voicemail”, which sounds suspiciously similar to my invention and I have since hired a lawyer to look into it.

The production cost of the cellphone answering machine prototype put me into crushing debt.  So, as any resilient American does in tough times, I maxed out my credit cards in order to hatch a scheme to make me famous.  When I launched the remote control jet pack with a model of my youngest son strapped to it, I knew I was on to something good.  And after I finally got the girl on the line at 9-11 to believe my story, it wasn’t long before the television news cameras came bursting through my door.  I felt a surge of testosterone run through my body.  I was ON!

The lights came on and the cameras were rolling, and I acted as if I wasn’t floating on a cloud with a screaming erection.  No, I put on a quivering lip and held my wife in my arm for support.  We were a team, intent on retrieving our son (who was sitting patiently in the attic with a box of animal crackers and a new Lego set.)  My fame rocket was flying over Pennsylvania, and teams of emergency vehicles and media trucks drove in hot pursuit, speculating, worrying and making me a household name.

When the news finally broke that Raptor was safe and sound and the emergency workers were chasing a robot, I wasn’t immediately labeled a hero, or even a genius inventor.  I wasn’t given a quirky inventor version of John and Kate Plus 8, or even the opportunity to argue with my wife on national television.   No, the gruff, barely high-school educated arms of the law shoved me into a police car.  I’m not sure what the charges will be, but no doubt they will be unfair.  Dear reader, though you may have felt scorn and disgust when the national media put on their spin machine to label me a demon, I ask:  Is it a crime to entertain America? While that total dweeb John Gosselin gets to ride jet skis and jam trashy women, I get to rot in prison.  If that’s justice, call me unjustified.

Riding the 8

seattlebus

Seattle buses are my main means of transportation in my new city.  Whereas Buffalo City buses served as conveyance for its booming can and bottle deposit industry, the average Seattle-ite utilizes the city buses without fear of the smell of stale beer and desperation.

Nay, the buses here are clean and immaculate, so clean you could eat off the seats, which I have done many, many times.  Even the garbage trucks here are clean, mostly because Seattle recycles everything.  Every time I try to throw out a bag of used syringes and diapers, I get scolded by a neighbor or roommate, who inform me that the valuable minerals and diseases have uses beyond sitting in a city dump.  It’s a different lifestyle, I’ll tell ya.

When you enter a city bus for the first time, you must remove your wallet and show your college diploma.  The bus driver then silently takes it from you and photocopies it in triplicate, after which you must take your diploma and exit the bus.  The King County Metro System will then run a background check, during which you must wait three (3) weeks before entering a city bus again.  After they learn you earned above a 3.5 GPA to get your Bachelor’s, you receive a Congratulations Genius card, which gives you the privilege of entering city buses and making eye contact with baristas in the Seattle Metro area.

When I finally received my card in the mail, I was ecstatic, finally I could start interviewing for jobs.  I had a job interview at 10 AM Wednesday morning, and I had to figure out the bus system to get to the other side of the city.  Like I do whenever I’m convinced I have a brain tumor or need to find pictures of naked celebrities, I asked Google.  Google let me know that I had to take the #8 bus.  Google also let me know of a coffee place on the walk to the bus stop and that Mariah Carey’s boob popped out of her dress at the VMA’s.

Unfortunately, when I finally left the house to attend the job interview, it was pouring rain.  Oh, THAT Seattle.  I had moved to THAT Seattle.  Whoops.  I trudged through the rain toward the stop.  After a few blocks, I consulted the directions on my hand, but they had become smeared and unreadable in the rain.  Oh well, people in Seattle are friendly enough, I’ll consult a pedestrian I thought to myself. I spotted a young mother in a rain poncho pushing a stroller toward me.

“Hello, do you know how to get to the #8 bus stop from here?” I asked her with a smile.
“No, no I don’t,” she replied with a look that said please don’t take my baby. She rushed past me with panic.
That was odd, I thought to myself.  I looked down at myself and noticed that my shirt had soaked through, making my nipples very, very visible.

I continued to wander around aimlessly in the rain, afraid to ask anyone for help for fear of being charged with sexual assault.  Finally, I found the stop for the #8 bus, but oddly enough no one else was there.  I checked the bus schedule and found out that the 9:13 AM bus had left, leaving me to wait for the 9:33 bus.  It was 9:14, so I sat on the wet stool in the rain with my arms crossed, hatching a plan to assassinate the mayor or at least the head of Seattle transportation.

People slowly came to wait with me, all intently listening to iPods for fear of being spoken to.  When the 9:33 bus finally arrived at 9:35, I was entirely soaked.  The bus was double-long, like a poor man’s train without the tracks.  It pulled up to me, and when the door opened, the bus lowered itself a foot and a half to the ground.  I felt like king of the world as I stepped on, when I heard someone shout “HEY!” from behind me.

I turned around, and there was a very disgruntled man in a wheelchair, who barged past me onto the bus.  Behind him, several Seattle-ites gave me a look that let me know that I’m a heartless monster.  I shrugged an apology and stepped on board.  I swiped my brand new Congratulations Genius card, and the bus driver shook her head disapprovingly at me.

The bus was surprisingly empty, and I sat in the first seat I could.  I stretched out, finally comfortable underneath a heater.  I shut my eyes, basking in comfort.  I soon realized that I was perhaps more comfortable than I should be, and when I opened my eyes I saw a 60 year old mystical wearing clothes entirely made out of yarn and hemp massaging my feat.  He had a toothless grin on his bearded face, and I recoiled in horror.

Over the bus’s PA system, the bus driver said “STARLIGHT MOONBATH, go sit back down and quit pestering people!”  Starlight Moonbath rolled his eyes and went back to sit down a few rows from me, bells jangling with every step he took.  Once seated, he stared intently at me, and didn’t stop staring for the entirety of the trip.

Because of the many stops the bus took, I had ample time underneath the heater.  By the time I got to my stop, I was bone dry, and my nipples were silenced.  I pulled the cord to let the bus driver to stop and when I exited the bus I gave her a quick “Thank you,”.  The sun was was now shining and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky.  I gave the sun a thumbs-up and it returned by tanning me a little bit.

I looked back at the bus as it drove away.  Starlight Moonbath was kissing the window looking at me, and with his forehead pressed against the window, he mouthed out “I’ll find you.”

I walked to my interview with a new confidence in my stride, knowing that while hippy mysticals may be out for my feet, my feet and I were quickly becoming Seattle-ites.

Copyright Tom Van Deusen 2014.