GENERAL KNOWLEDGE: I'm a man without conviction. I'm a man who doesn't know how to sell a contradiction. WHAT DO YOU DO?
ETHICAL REASONING: You are hunting with Dick Cheney. After a quick lunch break, during which you both consume several beers, you go back out into the field. You and another member of the party are lagging slightly behind Cheney, conversing quietly about a used car you recently purchased. You tell your companion that you got the car "real cheap." Cheney, thinking you said "cheep" and are therefore a bird, whirls and shoots you in the face. You are rushed to the hospital, where, after 18 hours of surgery, you are wheeled into the recovery room. You are sharing the room with a pirate recovering from a shark attack, a high-school shop teacher, and Scott Bakula, who is recovering from an unfortunate staking incident, which occurred when a vampire hunter misheard his name. Although you are on a steady diet of morphine, your facial wounds hurt terribly. You are perhaps a little too vociferous about this, and your roommates are not sorry when a burly orderly begins rifling through your belongings on a nightly basis, stealing whatever takes his fancy. When you protest weakly, he will either slap you or say, "Have some more morphine, dickweed," and increase the frequency of your IV drip. As a result, you leave the hospital six weeks later irretrievably addicted to hop. Unfortunately, since straight morphine is difficult to procure on the street, you are forced to switch to heroin, and are soon led to a life of crime to support your habit. One night, while leaving a convenience store you've just robbed, you witness the mayor walking into an alley with a well-known seven-foot transvestite prostitute called "Lilly." Curious, you lurk nearby to see what's going on. You are shocked when the mayor demands that Lilly hand over a large sum of money. Lilly protests that he hasn't gotten it all yet. The mayor gives Lilly a week to get the money. Your curiosity now highly aroused, you decide to follow His Honor around for a few says, during which time it becomes clear that the mayor is a pimp running a city-wide ring of transvestite prostitutes. Oddly, they are all seven feet tall. At any rate, when Lilly's week is up, you follow the mayor back to the darkened alley. Since Lilly isn't there yet, you run over to the nearby convenience store and rob it again, figuring you may as well since you're close by, plus you're out of milk. As you exit the store, you hear a gunshot from the alley. You run over just in time to see the mayor standing over Lilly's bloodstained corpse, still holding a smoking revolver. You escape without being spotted, but now you are faced with a dilemma. You have information that can solve Lilly's murder -- indeed, information that can bring the entire city government to its knees -- but you came by that information as the result of committing a crime of your own. Your heart is heavy as you make your way back to your apartment. You can't figure out what to do. Then, as you unlock your door, your landlord taps you on the shoulder and tells you he has to evict you to make room for a seven-foot transvestite prostitute who needs a place to stay. "But I pay my rent on time every month!" you protest. "I know," says your landlord. "I hate to do it, but the order comes straight from city hall." There is a coldness in the pit of your stomach as you realize the mayor must have spotted you after all. You know then that you will have to speak out, and damn the consequences. You thank your landlord for his kindness and assure him that you understand his dilemma. Then you stride out and cross the street, heading toward a pay phone. You have decided to call the police and spare no details in your account of the mayor's evil deeds, not even details incriminating yourself. You are trying to think of the best way to phrase your story when you are run down by a city bus. The bus driver screeches to a halt, gets down, and runs over to your broken form. Even as the life drains from you, you are surprised by the driver's identity: Dick Cheney. It seems he couldn't get a better job after leaving office. You reflect that it all has a certain poetic balance: Cheney got you started down this path when he nearly killed you; now he's finally finished the job. "Don't feel bad, Dick," you whisper. "I'm finally free." Then, with a small smile on your lips, you die. HOW ABOUT THEM RED SOX?
COST ANALYSIS: I guess I must be dumb, 'cause you had a pocket full of horses; Trojan, and some of them used. But it was Saturday night; I guess that makes it all right. WHAT HAVE I GO TO LOSE?
SELF-EVALUATION: Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers. HOW LONG UNTIL PETER PIPER REALIZES THAT PEPPERS CANNOT POSSIBLY BE PICKED AFTER BEING PICKLED -- AS HARVESTING SAID PEPPERS IS A NECESSITY BEFORE ANY ATTEMPT TO PICKLE THEM CAN BE SUCCESSFUL -- AND WEEPS BITTERLY, CURSING HIMSELF FOR AN EASILY-DUPED FOOL?
DECISION MAKING: Waffles or tarantulas? Choose!
GENERAL KNOWLEDGE: You and two friends are driving Billy Graham home when your car breaks down on a deserted road. It is midnight, and you have not seen another car in nearly an hour. You still have miles to go, and Dr. Graham is anxious to get home, as one of his houseguests has come down with demon possession and is in urgent need of exorcism. You are wondering what to do when one of your friends, Phil, says, "Hey, I think I see a mail box across the street. I'll go see if anyone at the house can help us." He walks across the street and into the woods. Moments later, you hear a piercing scream, and remember too late that Phil suffers from "Ursa/stipes arca oculitis," or the congenital inability to visually distinguish mail boxes from bears. You, Dr. Graham, and your other friend Tom rush across the street to find Phil laying just inside the woodline, horribly mauled. "Phil!" you say. "Hold on!" Phil weakly throws a hand out in a warning gesture. "Wait," he gasps with his dying breath, "it's not safe--" But it's too late. A hidden rope snaps tightly around your ankle, and you are jerked off your feet, finding yourself suspended upside-down from a tree limb. After you reorient yourself, you see that Tom and Dr. Graham are in a similar condition. You are too shocked to feel much else, but Tom is angry, and, perhaps unfairly, takes it out on Dr. Graham. "Where's Jesus NOW, huh?" he jeers. Dr. Graham, perhaps overtired and cranky given the day's exertions, gives Tom the finger -- and, when Tom swings close enough, follows up with a vicious punch to the crotch. Much bickering ensues, until finally you shout, "That's enough! Phil is dead, and we've obviously been trapped by some sort of renegade band, either ninjas or displaced pygmies. We've got to figure out what to do." You hope this will bring Dr. Graham and Tom to their senses, but it only sparks another ugly argument, this time on whether your captors are ninjas or pygmies. The argument stops abruptly, however, when your tormentors come out of the forest, brandishing weapons. Oddly enough, it turns out they are pygmy ninjas. They cut you down, bind your hands, and take you to their leader, who turns out to be Ernest Borgnine. You feel a bitter pang of irony at this, as just yesterday afternoon you and Phil had been coming up with a list of celebrities who were most unlikely to head up a tribe of hostile pygmy martial-arts masters, and Borgnine was right at the top of that list. "Who trespasses in my domain?" Borgnine asks. You identify yourselves and plead with him to release you. "Please, Mr. Borgnine!" you beg. "This is Billy Graham! We need to get him home." Borgnine grins maniacally. "Billy Graham, eh? I've been waiting years for this moment! I lost the lead role in 'The Phantom' to you, sir, and now I shall have my revenge!" You try to tell Borgnine that he is thinking of Billy Zane, but he is having none of it. The three of you are tied to a spit and placed over a fire to roast. Once again, Tom takes out his frustration on Dr. Graham. "Where's Jesus NOW, old man?" he sneers. And then suddenly, Jesus arrives. The sound of whirling helicopter blades fills the air. A Black Hawk descends from the night sky, and as it hovers, a rope drops from its open bay door. Down the rope flashes a figure clad in blinding white. He hits the ground running, and in a flurry of kung-fu devastation, overpowers all the ninjas. After he finishes securing their bonds, he turns to Borgnine. "Ernest," he says quietly. "My old teacher." Borgnine offers the man a sinister smile. "Jesus," he replies. "My favorite pupil." "Your reign of terror is over, old man," Jesus says. "I think not!" Borgnine replies, and the two fly at each other, trading kung-fu blows faster than the eye can accurately follow. After what seems an eternity, Borgnine lies bleeding on the ground. "Finish it," he rasps, with hatred in his eyes. "No, old man," the man in white says. "I won't be killing you today. You won't have the satisfaction of dragging me to your level. Take him away, boys." As several Green Berets -- who exited the Black Hawk as Jesus and Borgnine were fighting -- load their prisoners into the helicopter, the man in white cuts your bonds. You rise, free at last -- except for Tom, who was stuck on the bottom of the spit and was roasted to death sometime during the melee. "Hi, folks," the man in white says, sticking out his hand. "Jesus is the name -- Jesus Guiterrez, U.S. Army Special Forces. Sorry about the white outfit -- accidentally dumped some bleach in the load." You shake his hand warmly. "Thank you," you say. "How did you find us?" "Oh, we've had our eye on this place for a while," Jesus says. "Sorry about your friend, by the way." He gives you and Dr. Graham a lift on the Black Hawk, dropping Dr. Graham at his house just in time to perform the exorcism, then, at your request, taking you back to where you left your car after calling AAA and arranging for a tow truck to meet you there. Since there is no good place for the Black Hawk to land, you have to rappel to the ground. The helicopter has already flown away when you realize that during your absence, someone has broken into your disabled car and stolen your stereo. DOES THIS FUCKING FIGURE, OR WHAT?
GENERAL KNOWLEDGE FOLLOW-UP: You also left your keys in the helicopter.
ANALYTICAL REASONING: What is the fucking deal with Tom down in IT, anyway?
DEDUCTIVE REASONING: I was working part-time in the five-and-dime. My boss was Mr. McGee. He told me several times he didn't like my kind. WHY?
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