A Very Mad Clown

Kankakee slumlord and Vaudeville clown Madeline Topolla-Teirant struts into a busy Buckstars hoping to score some free java. “Welcome to Buckstars, what can I get started?” the friendly coffee clerk in the green apron asks a towering 5’10”, 300 pound Madeline. “I don’t have time to wait. You guys are horrible people, childish little girls and boys. Get my drink right and make it fast or I am going to go to the cafe down the street.” 

“Okay, what would you like?” the barista replies with a smile.

“Get me a pink drink and make it fast. Not the orange drink like you screwed up last time.”

The barista cashes out Madeline; the bulbous clown and slum manager walks off to the side, away from the long line of thirsty customers.

Regular customer Kitty Bortolotti, the tall, curly haired, mixed-race beauty with the star earrings is next in line. 

“Can I speak to the manager?” a confident Kitty asks with her hands on her hips.

“Sure.”

Kitty winks at the team leader. “I don’t need anything, I just want to help you. Don’t let your staff be afraid of certain customers who try and intimidate your staff, if you know what I mean. I have experience; she’s all talk.”

“Customers like you are the best,” the supervisor says to Kitty.

“Glad to help.”

The two exchange smiles and a nod, then Kitty orders a drink alongside her best friend.

Kitty waits patiently for her drinks, meanwhile an obviously agitated Madeline storms over to the counter and screams at the barista, who has better things to do than listen to a screaming Madeline.

Kitty’s drinks come back. “We made you an extra one because we love great customers like you.”

“Awww thanks! You guys are the best.” Kitty takes a bill from her lime-green wallet and places it in the tip jar.

Kitty lifts the cup carrier, walks off to the side and chats with her best friend forever, Lana “LTL” Tolstoy Levitsky.

A bunch of names are called out: “LaWanda! Marigold! Damien!” but not Madeline’s. The happy customers grab their cups of joy and walk out the door.

“Abby!” 

Madeline turns to Abby and asks “What drink is that?”

A confused Abby looks over to Madeline.

“A pink one.”

“Oh I thought you had mine, we got the same thing.”

“Yeah sure.” Abby gives Madeline a dirty look and walks out the door.

“Madeline!”

“I hope they’re not clownin’ around with my drink!” Madeline thinks aloud.

“We made it just how you wanted it,” The barista says with a smile.

Madeline takes a sip and then reads the cup: “MADWOMAN”.

The entire cafe full of customers starts giggling and the room roars with laughter.

Madwoman storms out the cafe and walks behind the strip mall, where she is again greeted by the site of her best friends, the cafe dumpsters.

fullsizeoutput_4f42

Sybil’s Dog Food Dilemma

“Oh snap, that’s the last bite!” Kankakee debt collector Sybil Kibble exclaims as she shakes the now-empty bag of dog food, and turns it upside down. “I am really hungry too.”

Sybil hops in her white Chrysler LeBaron and drives down to Wally Green’s drugstore. As soon as she steps through the door, demoted pharmacy clerk who thinks he is Elvis, Robbie Hurlbutt greets her. 

“What can I help you find today?”

“Do you have any Dog Chow?”

“We are fresh out.”

Sybil exits, walks by Robbie’s purple clown car with a giggle and gets behind the wheel of her LeBaron.

Sybil parks in the “Expectant Mothers Only” space at Schmucks grocery store and walks in. “Who is going to know I am in menopause anyway?” Sybil says to herself as she walks through the automatic door.

After a thorough combing of the pet food aisle, Sybil comes up empty. She hopes the third time is a charm, and drives over to Bucketheads hardware store.

After walking past the 11% off everything sign, Sybil hopes to save big money on dog food, which she usually scores toward the back of the store. However she strikes out yet again. 

Sybil gets on her smart phone after exiting the store and calls Wally Green’s 1-800 customer service number. After spend 45 minutes in the on-hold abyss, the call disconnects. She tries two more time and her call gets disconnected immediately.

Sybil walks back into Wally Green’s to try and figure out what is going on. She asks to speak to the Manager on Duty. “I am sorry you are having trouble reaching our customer care line. Our representatives are trained to keep hanging up on all callers until the queue is gone.”

Angered, Sybil Kibble needs to do something to relax. She picks up a newspaper and reads the headline: “Nationwide Dog Food Shortage.” Sybil slams down the paper and storms out, heading to the local bar. “I need a drink,” Sybil mumbles to herself.

Sybil sits down at the bar. Before the bartender can even wait on her, barfly and notorious ladies’ man Wally Green emerges.

“Hey babe!”

“Oh hi Wally.”

“Can I buy you a drink, hon?”

Sybil accepts because she is cheap.

Wally begins to bore Sybil with his tall tales about his family almost having inherited most of Manhattan Island.

Sybil interrupts Wally’s rambling:

“Hey, why are your stores out of dog food anyway? I am so hungry.”

“Oh yeah, I have a secret stash at my house. Wanna go back to my place?”

Sybil looks Wally in the eye sporting a devilish grin.

The pair arrive at Wally’s McMansion. Wally offers wine, she declines.

Wally starts to bore Sybil about his road trip to Florida as he really likes the heat.

Sybil interrupts and asks about dinner. 

Wally offers to cook her a romantic meal. Sybil agrees with excitement.

“It will be a surprise. I know you will love it!”

Visions of dog bones dance in Sybil’s head. Wally emerges from the kitchen with a plate full of Gefilte fish, and Sybil almost pukes. 

“You’re not impressed?” Wally asks.

“Umm, no I eat dog food.”

“You’re a bill collector. Makes sense. If you stop calling my store, I will give you some cans of Alpo.”

“That’s my favorite kind!” Sybil exclaims. “But I won’t take you off my list. You owe us too much money.”

“Then will you kiss me?”

Sybil gags and dashes out Wally’s McMansion, back to her own, where she settles for cat food instead.

New CRASS Computers are a real ENIGMA

Sybil Kibble unveils the new “Enigma” computers for her debt collection team. “How do you get on the Internet?” asks a quizzical Dale Davis. “Just type “INTERNET” and then “RUN.” “How do you load the Collect-o-matic 2000?” a wary Judy Avelli asks. “Just hook the machine up to a parakeet cage and type away.”

Behind the Moroniverse – Konrad Teirant

Konrad “Kon” Teirant, CRASS Chief of Accounting is a piece of work. You may not be surprised that the main person on whom I base him is pretty messed up.

When I was a high school graduate, all of 17, I worked a total of two days at a drive-in movie theater (yes, we still had one). The first day, I did really well and my supervisor really liked me. I was happy to have a job, even in the horribly run-down concession stand. Don’t ask me about the bathrooms.

The next day, in comes the owner. He could not be more miserable. He could not wait to complain how he thought every little thing I did was wrong: “Fill those popcorn bags. Fill them more. Does that look full?”

This tyrant let me go and never paid me.

He owns a chain of theaters across my area. I saw him a few years later in a restaurant gloating about getting “big bags” and how he was flown down to Georgia by Lord only know who, and “given an Armani suit.”

Below is a very early idea for this character, orignally named King Tyrant, circa 2003.

Behind the Moroniverse – Early concept art plus new characters!

Damien Hurlbutt’s birthday is coming up on August 10th. To celebrate his birthday, I would like to share some early concept drawings of him and other morons.

fullsizeoutput_4283fullsizeoutput_357ffullsizeoutput_3976

fullsizeoutput_5249

Below is an early character design for an unnamed Dale Davis.

The next few drawings I created early on for a previous series which I merged into MoronicArts. Look for them in my forthcoming novel.