The Eighth Page

A Good Cutting Instrument

There are lots of things that scare me. I’m scared of death, insomnia, and that squirrel that always stares at me when I walk out of Gelb. He knows. Anyway, Halloween is a pretty scary time, and a mind as feeble and tender as mine can barely handle the atmosphere. That’s why I asked my uncle Jack, a World War II veteran, how to handle the various costumed characters lurking around campus. “Boy,” he said to me, “first you get yourself a sharp knife. You’ve gotta make sure that you keep it sharp, cuz if it’s dull you might as well be bamboozled on the spot.” After he said that he went into shock so I decided to look for answers elsewhere. The next most logical place to look for help in easing my Halloween fears was a psychologist’s office. I headed over to Dr. Pride Brennan’s office and asked him his thoughts. “Boy,” he said to me, “first you get yourself a sharp knife. You’ve gotta make sure that you keep it sharp, cuz if it’s dull you might as well be bamboozled on the spot.” Then I realized that “Uncle Jack” was just a nickname for Dr. Pride Brennan. Boy was I embarrassed. The next place I looked for help was the bar of the Ritz Carlton in Boston. I had a little trouble getting in since I’m not 21 yet, but I sang “Holiday” by Madonna and put the bouncer in a trance. Once I was in the bar, I saw lots of lonely rich people that obviously hated Halloween almost as much as I do. I went up to the loneliest, richest looking person I could find and asked him what I should do about my Halloween problem. He turned slowly towards me, a large mole on his upper lip, and said, “Mmyyeesss, listen closely my good man. The first thing you must do is find yourself a good cutting instrument…” I don’t know whether he was going to tell me to keep it sharp, but I didn’t want to find out, so I went to Friendly’s to get a Fribble. After much introspection, I decided that the best way to overcome my fears was to actually go trick-or-treating. After all, I figured that staring right into the belly of the beast would do much more good for me then locking my doors and screaming every time my doorbell rang. I grabbed some sheets and a garbage bag, fashioned a ghost costume, and headed out. I have to admit, stepping out of the door was a little frightening at first. Everywhere I looked there were tons of people with more hair and claws than…than…some ugly person! Hehehehe. Anyway, once I got a hang of the whole trick-or-treating gag, things weren’t too bad. Before long I had three bags of candy and a smile on my face, until things changed… Some guy came up to me dressed up as a werewolf. It was a pretty convincing costume, with realistic drool, dark black eyes, etc. He didn’t speak English, just snarled, and so I figured he probably needed to clear his throat. I invited him into my house for a glass of water and a green apple so that he could talk again. You wouldn’t believe it, but he really abused my hospitality. It turns out it wasn’t a guy at all, but a real werewolf, and it ripped out most of my internal organs. It’s kind of funny actually, since although I died, a scientist incorporated my brain into a robotic body. That’s right, I’m a robot. “But Anthony,” you might ask, “if you’re a robot, then how come I’ve seen you bleed and eat food in commons?” To that I might say, “shut up…jerk.” Then you might say that I’m being childish, but really I’m just trying to avoid the question because I’m not really a robot. You guys are so silly.