Brent just stopped by and gave us permission to reprint the story in full, so without further ado, here it is:
Me and my lucky iguana were cruising down the interstate on a motorcycle we built from scratch. The motorcycle resembled a Harley Davidson the way a dead camel resembles a majestic stallion, but that’s a horse of a different color. It was a special motorcycle. We’d fitted it with an exact replica of the flux capacitor (from Back to the Future) that the iguana regurgitated last week. His talents never cease to amaze me.
This was no joyride. We were on a mission, a mission from God. At least he said he was God. He smelled like booze and slept in the subway. God warned us that the past was going to kill us if we didn’t act quickly. The iguana and I, being deeply religious, heeded God’s words and set out to assassinate the past.
So there we were, nearing 88 miles per hour, carrying an arsenal worthy of Arnold Schwarzenegger on a motorcycle worthy of Homer Simpson. Just to be safe, I had a case of spare iguanas slung over my shoulder (mine tend to be short-lived), and I had just bent over to see if I’d given them air holes (the iguana was steering) when we collided with a DeLorean that was also going 88 miles per hour. There was a loud “KACHING!” as if God had just fired us out of his cash register and refunded us several thousand years.
Miraculously, I was unharmed. The motorcycle was still a piece of junk. The iguana had fused with the driver of the DeLorean (I affectionately nicknamed him Marty McLizard) and was teaching himself to walk. The rest of the iguanas were dead (my fault, I had forgotten the air holes after all). Nearby, a large road sign read “Welcome to the year 59! Rome: 5 miles, any direction.” We were about to set out in any direction when we spotted a Hooters and decided that the past could wait.
The waitress who brought our wings had to struggle to keep her shirt from bursting open. The reason became apparent when two wingless owls poked their heads out of her collar and begged us to free them. The man at the table across from us ordered their immediate execution. As the waitress took them to the kitchen (to be cooked alongside the Christians), we moved to his table and struck up a conversation.
His name was Nero. Apparently he was the king-emperor-tyrantosaurus of Rome. The way he explained it, that’s like a president with a license to kill. We told him about the future, how everything had gone to Hell and he should make the best of the present, since soon there wouldn’t be a past either. We were getting along pretty well (the owl cutlets were delicious) until I made a joke about his leaf-hat.
Nero sentenced us to death and imprisonment (not necessarily in that order) and threw us in the dungeon to await our doom. Our doom was delivered later that day (on a silver platter, no less) by Nero himself. He’d specially prepared poisoned mushrooms for us (see Martha Stewart Living, issue 145) and the effort showed. I felt guilty when I had to tell him about my mushroom allergy. Unfortunately, Marty’s iguana instincts kicked in and he quickly devoured the whole plate (only the plate, he didn’t like mushrooms either). But because of his immunodeficiency condition the silver platter quickly triggered an accelerated silver-toxicity reaction that left Marty convulsing on the floor. Nero rushed to the first aid kit (which consisted of leeches and a primitive defibrillator) but froze when he saw Marty’s chest bulge. It went in and out, in and out, until suddenly there were tiny, blood-soaked iguanas flying from his chest in all directions. The mighty Nero screamed like a little girl and fainted like an even littler one.
I marched out of the dungeon with a baby iguana army at my heels. We found the cache of weapons I’d brought and prepared to make history history. The Roman guards never knew what hit them (literally, they had no idea what a machine gun was back then). Most of them were dead before they knew they were being attacked (and even then they weren’t entirely sure). When no one was looking, I started the Great Fire of Rome five years early. Soon, Nero was ready to surrender. He offered us a cruise in the boat he built specially for his mother in exchange for mercy and a machine gun. It seemed like a fair deal (although we had to take his mother with us).
We hadn’t gone very far when I noticed that the boat (coincidentally named The Pretitanic) was constructed entirely of paper, which was rapidly becoming soggy. Once I passed out the life jackets (also made of paper), we all abandoned ship and swam safely to shore where Nero was pouting grumpily. His mother grounded him for trying to kill her, so he tried to kill her again. Unfortunately, he had terrible aim and killed half of his advisors, several baby iguanas, and a couple of olives that were in the wrong story at the wrong time. His mother double-grounded him.
Nero begged us to do something about his mother, so I taught her how to ride the motorcycle. She learned quickly, and as soon as I could, I turned on the flux capacitor and bailed out. The motorcycle vanished, leaving only a streak of flames. Nero rewarded me with his throne, and as the new king-emperor-tyrantosaurus, I ordered that the past be put to death for conspiring against me. Before it could be done, God appeared with a shopping cart full of paper bags. He yelled at me for sending Nero’s mother back to the beginning of time, where she had usurped his throne. If we didn’t stop her, everything would be destroyed (and grounded without supper). So me, Nero, and a dozen little iguanas climbed into God’s shopping cart and flew back to the beginning of time.
Unfortunately, God was using Mapquest. We got lost. By the time we arrived at the beginning of time, it was too late. Arnold Schwarzenneger and Gallagher were already there. We watched from the splatter section as Gallagher smashed Nero’s mother with his massive hammer. Arnold was busy implementing a new form of universal government (which he cleverly named an Arnoldocracy) and religion (which he cleverly named Schwarzenism) that were both entirely based on an amalgamation of catch phrases he had used in the past (although technically this was before the past, and the (future) past as we know it was going to be altered with the probable effect that Arnold would never be born) and campaign slogans he had planned for the future (although technically if the (future) past was never going to happen, then the (future) past’s future wasn’t likely to happen either, and…forget it, time paradoxes are confusing).
Everything changed. Several parts of the universe were unable to cope with the physics of “Hasta la vista, baby” and imploded. History followed an entirely different course, but yielded virtually the same results (the Holocaust still happened, the Titanic still sank, Al Gore was still boring). God moved to California, where he became governor (Gary Coleman was a close second) and began acting in such movies as “South Park VS. Predator”, “The DaVinci Code 2”, and “The Last Temptation of the Pope”. I discovered the Garden of Eden, where Gallagher and I cultivated an iguana farm. We lived happily ever after until I choked on a watermelon seed and died.
True story. I was there. If you don’t believe me, ask the iguanas.
A great big peek above our garters to Brent for allowing us to reprint the entire story.