Money S**ks
Bullsh*t talks.

By Klaus Kinsky
(996 words; posted Sept. 23, 1996; do not read before Sept. 23, 1999)


My unit was commanded by Captain Our, who finally broke down one day and consented to tell us her own story, in her own words.

"I think I've had it taken away and taken away," she began, "And taken away again, and then, suddenly, given back to me and then, just as suddenly, taken away again.

"In the end, I think much more has been taken away than I'd ever had or been given -- and I anxiously await, at least, a good faith attempt, on the part of the fucking cosmos, to give something back."


We travelled all throughout Ethiopium, and all across the Lithuanaland-Malodia Confederation.

We reached Nicojuana, where the people could crush their brutal dictators by thought alone. This was the result of a social experiment, years before, that had failed -- and, now, every citizen wore a miniature bunsen burner on a chain around her neck, to commemorate it.



hen we passed through a string of new countries and nation-towns: Scandorica Norte. The Union of Pan-Tongan Republics. CanaMex Refugee Zone 7. The 14th Street Protectorates. Greater Lubrical City. Metro La-Bas.


Suddenly the van swerved and we smashed into an uplink dish. Captain Our was jammed under the steering wheel. Two of the other soldiers in the back went crazy and tried to make a run for it, but were immediately shot dead by the local Panamonika militia, on whose border we had just crashed.

I was taken into custody, and this is the only deposition they were able to force out of me:

Your Honor,

As you can see, I have not arrived fully prepared to live on your planet and am fucked-up in ways that don't have a name and, thus, cannot receive funding.

Further, my home planet or dimension has lost my file, and I am, therefore, here, cast adrift amongst you, forever.

But, despite all that, I am not, in this deposition, asking for any kind of assistance.

I am asking only that you please refrain from killing me in ways that, to you, are just plain old everyday life.


o, for my crime of pretending to exist at all, I was sentenced to Death Row, with no possibility of death. Fortunately, or unfortunately, Captain Our was there too.

"What are you in for?" I asked.

"Mass murder, serial murder, drug possession, grand theft auto, driving without a license, driving under the influence, driving an unregistered motor vehicle, possession of false identification, forgery, kidnapping, grand larceny, 2nd degree murder, possession of a controlled substance, possession of fissionable materials, intent to transport controlled biochemicals across international borders, intent to conspire to assassinate the Pope and the President with a single bullet, intent to foment world civil war, conspiracy to cause World neuro-chemical war, high treason, low treason...." she said.


Eventually I was released for absence of behavior, and as I walked out, the chaplain met my gaze and smiled and said a little prayer that I not really be what everybody kept telling me I was.


checked into Atari Hospital for the Criminally Innocent and was given a large private room with a view of Hail Mary International Airport. This wasn't really an Airport, but had 4 or 5 board-certified landing mounds where, occasionally, desperate re-entry pods would attempt to slam down.


My first night there, I couldn't sleep because of the loud hum from all the listening devices hidden all over my room by, you know, World People's CIA and World Peoples' Bureau of Investigation and the World Moonies and World Mafia and the World Hispanic-Islamic-Jewish Conspiracy-Jihad Inc.

So I went up on the roof.

It was dark, and I was already starting to see the skeletons of architectural structures in my head, preparatory to dreaming.

The null emotion swept through me and, in the sky, I could hear the gentle sounds of a few lost re-entry pods, beginning their desperate trajectories down -- their pilots, eyes closed, fingers crossed, praying hard to just slam down in one of the SOFT spots, across the street from me.


he next thing I remember was waking up. I was shivering from the cold, and Dr. Our was standing over me. The sun hadn't even come up over the distant rooftops yet.

"Good news," he said, all upbeat, as soon as he saw that I'd opened my eyes and was conscious.

I looked around to regain where I was. The sky was partly overcast, with only a few patches of dawn far in the distance.

"You fucking asshole," I said, angry, but still only half awake.

But the doctor didn't seem to hear, and waved a handful of lab reports at me.

"We've just gotten your tests back," he said, "And there's really no reason to keep you any longer."

Then he motioned to some orderlies to wheel me away, and as they did, he called after me.

"And I see no reason why you shouldn't be able to go back and lead a normal, healthy, happy life from here on," he said.

The orderlies looked at each other, all "Whooooah!"


As soon as I was released from the hospital, I walked out into the sunshine and my parole officer was there, waiting for me.

"Sorry," she said, "But you've been violating the terms of your parole like a maniac for too many years now, and we just can't let you keep getting away with it. We have to be fair, and we have to set some kind of example for the other parolees."


I lived in a town that was asleep at the world. Its Mayor was always giving press conferences saying: "We want to be just like the old Uniteda Statesa that you read about in history books."

"You mean free and democratic?" one of the journalists would always ask.

"No," the Mayor would reply, "Lazy, blind, self-righteous, and on lots of drugs."

Klaus Kinsky is editor of STALL.

Illustration by Dion and the Belmonts