Saturday, September 6, 2008

Rise of the Meth Ninjas

"What does all of this have to do with us?" Alastair asked me.

"Yeah," I told him, "that's what I asked...Say, did that seem like an unusually long pause to you. For some reason, that second felt like a week."

"I thought so, too," he said, "it's weird how that can happen sometimes. You ask a question and then it seems like it takes forever to get it answered."

"I know," I says to him, "maybe time is just an illusion."

"What makes you say that?" he asks.

"I dunno," I respond, "it was just something I read on the back of a bag of bagels a couple of days ago."

"You read that time is an illusion on the back of a bag of bagels? What kind of bagels were they?"

"Well, I started getting these 'philosophy bagels' cause they were on sale. I wasn't much interested in what they said on the back, I really just wanted the bagels. Of course, I may have just made that whole thing up, I've been drinking pretty heavily for the last couple of days. I'm not even that sure that any of this is real."

"How do you cope with that?" he asks me.

"Well, I just try and take it on faith, really. Right now, this is the only experience I have, so I don't really have anything to compare it to in order to determine whether it's real or not."

"Wow," he says, "that's really weird."

"I know," I tells him, "why do you think I drink?"

"I can't say I blame you. I may need a drink now, too."

So, I goes into the house and grab a couple of mason jars full of white lightning and we sit on the porch sipping it as he tells me all about the squirrel monkeys and their long-standing rivalry with the meth ninjas.

A while ago, a group of ninjas got real tired of working for other people all the time; killing when they were told to kill, sneaking around, breaking up all the best parties. They wanted to be the ones giving the orders. They wanted to be the ones throwing all the best parties and THEN breaking up the parties by killing the guest of honor. So they refused to take any more contracts and they withdrew to a set of caves to meditate deeply on their future. They decided the first thing they needed was a really cool and dangerous sounding clan name. They went through all the possibilities, but all the dangerous animals (dragons, hawks, tigers, bears to name a few) were already taken. It was really a problem until one day a member of the clan came back dragging a man whose leg was full of poison. They gathered around him and asked what animal could have possibly done this to him. Unfortunately, he was unable to tell them because he didn't know its name. After they ran through all the poisonous animals they could think of, snakes and spiders and whatnot, they had the man tell them where this had taken place.

They took a journey to the foot of the mountains and into a swamp. It took a week of searching, and they lost four ninjas to poisonous swamp bears. They would have then named themselves "Clan Poisonous Swamp Bear," but the embroiderer told them that an poisonous swamp bear embroidered onto a uniform looks almost identical to a grizzly bear embroidered on the uniform. This would have been very bad for them because Clan Grizzly had recently angered the demon Kal'Ah from the land of wind and ghosts by telling his wife she looked fat in a pair of coo lots, and the demon had vowed to wipe out the clan. This wouldn't have been a problem, but the demon Kal'Ah is incredibly near sighted, but he will never admit to it and so he refuses to ever go get glasses. So, the possibility was high that Clan Poisonous Swamp Bear would be wiped out by Kal'Ah before they ever got started, so they were forced to continue searching.

When they finally found the creature, they stood around and marveled at its beauty and excellence. It had sleek fur and poisonous spines. They asked the embroiderer if he could sew it on to their uniforms and he told them, "Yeah, I could probably work something up." Thus was born Clan Platypus.

"Wait, wait," I told Alistair, "Clan Platypus? Are you serious?"

"Absolutely," he responded, "The platypus is an aggressive, dangerous animal. In addition to being a fierce predator in the water, it defends itself on land with poison claws on the backs of its legs. If you saw a platypus, you'd be best advised to turn around and walk away."

"Well, guess you learn something new every day. Continue."

And he did. Once Clan Platypus had their symbol, they began to recruit other ninjas who were tired of the kill-a-day ninja lifestyle. They allowed those ninjas to recruit other ninjas and eventually, they had built the world's first ninja pyramid scheme. Once that was in place, they began their quest for world domination. They struck on the idea of using mind-dulling substances to make people into their slaves pretty early on, but since this was 1000 years ago, the most powerful thing they could get their hands on was opium. They plied that trade for a long time, spreading their distribution network worldwide, one addict at a time. The plan didn't really work out, however, because opium addicts are extremely lazy. And, really, what good is it to have a bunch of slaves that are lazy? You send them to fetch the head of your enemy and they come back a month later with a bag of potatoes and no shoes. So, they tried different things for awhile, occasionally resorting to being killers for hire, but they always kept in mind their larger plan.

"And that brings us to the modern day," Alastair says.

"Before you launch into that," I stop him, "can I freshen up that drink for you?"

"You bet," he tells me, "it's just like mom used to make."

So I got up and went into the house for drinks.