'Ten Minutes Late for Reality' by Lou Morris (c) 1988, 1989, 1991, 2002, 2015. Eighteen:


   "This is a test of the Emergency Literary System.  This
is only a test.  For the next ten seconds you will read a
warning signal.  This is only a test.
   If this had been not been a test [huh?], this
announcement would have been followed with instructions for
your local chapter.  This was only a test..."

                                 - E.L.S.--a service brought
to you by W.D.E.R.,
Cassville radio.

   "Howdy to all you folks out there, once again!  This is
W.D.E.R. radio with another news update...  And the big story
out tonight is the escape of the bookbag carrying, policeman
hating, pasta maker throwing weirdo that Cassville police
apprehended earlier today.  Here's his physical description:  
about five foot five, black stringy hair and he talks to his
black bookbag a lot.  Shouldn't be hard to find.  If you see
him, call the Cassville police and provide his whereabouts."
   "And now for a few words of special importance from the
local campaign verses everything:"
   "Hi!  This is McMeow, the crime kitty and I'd like to
speak to you about saying "No!"  Just say "No!" to the
following things:  drugs, premarital sex, unsafe sex,
cigarette smoking, drinking, drinking and driving, driving
too fast, careless driving, obesity, rock music, really fat
girls who wear spandex, M.T.V., cable T.V., fast food, candy,
diet soft drinks, Pepsi, imported cars, amusement parks that
fire people for no reason, the tenth Bon-Jovi song in a row,
abortion, legalized prostitution, legalized drugs, digital
watches, analog watches with no numbers on the face, credit
cards, teen-age pregnancy, acne, toxic waste, lists that
contain more than twenty-five items, the star-wars defense
program, pollution, medical waste, unsafe beaches, those
really weird people with the spiked hair that inhabit our
boardwalks, nudity, pornographic magazines, R-rated films
with too little sex in them, porno films, porno films about
incest, premature ejaculation, impotence, alcoholism, aids,
herpes, people who make fun of Bill Cosby, clip-on ties,
cocaine, crack, splat, home shopping clubs, Johnny Carson's
coffee cup, publishers who wouldn't publish this book, and
finally, last but not least, make sure you just say "No!"
to--Dodge Darts!  Especially green ones.  Remember, just say
"No!" and take a lick out of crime!"
   "And thank you for the time to pop off and grab a bite to
eat.  If you people are still alive out there, I'll be right
back after this important commercial break."
   "Ahem.  Hi, this is Peter Temp--"
   "And this is Dawn Temperature from Cosy Corners Cleaners
and I'd like to--"
   "Shut up Dawn!  I'm supposed to do the talking!"
   "Who said?  I can talk if I want to!  If you don't let me
talk, I'll go and tell dad!  He'll fix you--he'll make you
drive the van to school--"
   "Dawn!  I said shut up!  This is my commercial!"
   "No it's not--"
   "Thank you Cosy Corners Cleaners for that very special
message or commercial or something.
   "Now here's a message just dropped on my desk from the
Pennsylvania state police:
   "Would the owner of a gold 1971 Buick Riviera with a
brown door please move his or her vehicle.  It has become an
eye sore on the parkway and will be towed away at the owner's
expense if it is not removed before tomorrow morning.  Thank
   "And that's it for the news this Tuesday night; hope ya
have fun and don't let those pesky flying fish scare you!  
This is Eddie McDirty saying adios amigos!"