It is with great disgust that I set aside my edition of The Arkham Eugenics Quarterly and pick up — again — the instruments that allow me to eke out my feeble living as a writer of cheap pulp stories. However, the embarrassment that this undertaking will cause me is almost too great for a man of my breeding to bear. My skin pales to near translucence just thinking about it.
It was not so long ago that the Philips family was one of the wealthiest in New England. Of noblest blood we were and our debilitating genetic disorders were held in highest admiration in all the best social circles. My grandfathers lived lives of idle pleasure, whiling away some days doing nothing more than comparing their collections of only the most fashionable ethnic groups.
That all ended after my father’s investment in Dowsing Enterprises Ltd. and now I, their henpecked son, am forced to earn a living writing horror stories for closet dwellers who commune in Internet support groups for high-functioning autistics.
These degenerate mongrels of low social standing continually e-mail me, causing me to lose my connection to and severely angering my guildmates. These cretins do not realize I only write these stories over microwaved pizza on nights my wife throws me from her bedchamber. I recently revealed to her that I was a celibate and that I consider sexual congress useless except for the purposes of producing screaming womb droplings.
Our marriage has been on uncertain terms since.
What makes matters worse is that my agent assigned me a new book that is far below even the low reputation I now have. “Howie,” he says, befouling the air around him with the odor of whatever ethnic food he was cramming in his maw. “Scholastic wants you to write a book of Halloween jokes. Ya know, for kids! I told them you’d love to!”
I cursed the cosmos that would make me choose between seeing the Lovecraft name further degraded on the tissue-thin pages of a Scholastic order form or not having enough money to buy this book for my wife as a passive-aggressive Christmas present.
So this fall look for “H.P. Lovecraft’s 101 Howl-oween Punnies” in the Doritos-stained fingertips of a GameStop clerk near you. The cover, I’m told, depicts a laughing werewolf using a gag flower device to spray some ichor or other into the face of a Dracula.
I’ve included a few of jokes that will appear in publication- may Thule forgive me.
We at Arthur Treacher’s Fish & Chips are known best for two things: our delicious assortment of fried seafood products, and the tragic mercury poisoning scare of 1983 that we’ve yet to recover from financially. But despite successfully infiltrating the American pop culture zeitgeist over the past forty years, one aspect of our branding simply refuses to leave an imprint on the minds of the modern fast food-eating public; regrettably, I speak of Arthur Treacher himself. A recent study performed by our marketing department came to the conclusion that the average American simply doesn’t know who Arthur Treacher is! Amazing as it seems, our restaurant’s namesake — who was the Stephen Baldwin of the 30s — simply doesn’t have the cache that he used to back in 1969, when “Flower Power” and “Treacher-Mania” took the world by storm.
Since you’re all invested in the future of Arthur Treacher’s Fish & Chips, I can assure you that we’ve spent the last decade trying to increase Treacher-consciousness, but it’s been an uphill battle. In 1992, we added the question “How do you feel about Arthur Treacher?” on our customer comment cards, but the most common responses have been “I don’t know who that is” and “He’s gay.” And, as you all know, our late-90s Arthur Treacher’s Kids’ Meal “acting figures” (featuring authentic butler garb) promotion was regarded with apathy by our child demographic, losing us untold millions. My friends, Long John Silver’s has had our head on the chopping block for many years now, and to succeed in these non Treacher-compatible times, change is necessary. And this letter is meant to inform you that change is on the way.
In 2010, Arthur Treacher’s Fish & Chips will be no more — but don’t worry, we won’t be closing down any of our 48 (soon to be 31) nationwide locations. Instead, we’ve decided to take our restaurant franchise in a new direction, complete with a fresh deceased celebrity endorsement! We think you’ll find that our restaurant’s new namesake really appeals to the savvy, overweight 18-35 demographic that consumes at least 50 ounces of corn syrup per meal; she’s hip, sophisticated, with a “funky fresh” attitude that really appeals to dancing urban teens. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the new face of Arthur Treacher’s Fish & Chips.
Welcome to the 1950s: an idyllic era known best for its white picket fences, Uncle Milty, and the constant threat of unexpected nuclear war. Luckily, our own government recognized the common fear of being vaporized as the result of a global pissing contest, so they produced several films instructing citizens on how the most dangerous weapons ever created could easily be avoided by cowering in the basement or hiding under a desk made out of balsa wood. This is one of these films.
You’ve sent us e-mails. You’ve verbally threatened us in the street. You’ve cried softly into an embroidered pillow. And now you can stop doing all of these things, because our third riffed educational short will be premiering at The Oakland’s Stage Fright this coming Wednesday!
Located at The Oakland Center for the Performing Arts at 220 West Boardman Street in picturesque Youngstown, Ohio. If you’re coming from out of state, just follow the smell!
We’ll eventually post the video on this very blog, but should nuclear war happen before then, you’ll have no idea how to prevent complete immolation using only a suit jacket! Oh, and there’ll be a lot of other content here soon. So you’re gonna want to watch out for that.
Our new riff of a not-at-all creepy educational short about puberty from the 1950s. Please put on your 3D glasses and watch boys grow right before your eyes! But do not touch the boys; the boys are not real.
Something Awful’s Bob “BobServo” Mackey enlists the help of forum goon Billiam to deliver an MST3K-style mockery of the horrible town that turned them into the subhuman monsters they are today. No reading necessary by popular demand!