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What Was Left Behind

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WHAT WAS LEFT BEHIND (MST3K version of "What You Leave Behind")

(The scene opens, showing the dark silhouettes of a man and two strange-looking creatures sitting in what appears to be a movie theater. The lights come up a little bit, revealing the blonde-haired man wearing a blue janitor's uniform, while on either side of him sits an empty bubblegum machine with arms and a beak, and a vaguely doglike-looking creature with a net on top of its head. These are our heroes for the story: Mike Nelson, the man; Tom Servo, the bubblegum machine; and Crow T. Robot, the little dog-like creature. A viewscreen appears before them, slowly coming into focus and showing the dour-faced Sergeant Joe Friday from TV's Dragnet, dressed in his customary grey suit coat, dark pants, white shirt and black tie, with a cigarette dangling from his lips. Next to him stands his co-hort, Officer Bill Gannon, also dressed in a grey suitcoat and dark pants, white shirt and dark tie, with an equally dour expression on his face. The two men peer unhappily at the viewscreen controls in front of them, apparently confused as to how they work.)

CROW T. ROBOT (whispering to Mike Nelson and Tom Servo): What's up with the two sad-sack funeral directors? Did somebody accidentally drink their Ronco Sea Monkeys or somethin'? I mean, where's the usual Mads at?

TOM SERVO (also whispering): Hey, way to work a corporate sponsor into the story, right off the bat, Crow!

CROW (still whispering): Yeah, I live to shill, ya know.

MIKE NELSON: Shh! I think they're about to speak.

SERGEANT FRIDAY (clearing throat and tapping viewscreen with a finger): Is this thing on? (blows on it, temporarily fogging the viewscreen with his breath) Testing, one-two, testing. (frowns) Can you hear me out there? (turns to Bill Gannon) Bill, is this thing on? (Bill shrugs helplessly, and Friday turns back to the viewscreen) Damn it, I swear to God, modern technology is gonna drive me insane. First that damn silly machine on my desk won't hold my coffee cup for me, then it tells me I've got mail, yet whenever I go to the mailbox and check, there's NOTHING THERE.

TOM: Well, I'd wager you'll be dead from lung cancer before modern technology drives you insane, the way that you're smoking that ciggie. Don't you realize that smoking causes cancer?

SGT. FRIDAY (looking startled as he peers through the viewscreen): What the HELL? Did that bubblegum machine just TALK? (squints at viewscreen) And why does it have arms? And a beak? (looks over his shoulder at Bill as he points to Tom Servo) What in the hell IS that thing? Some kind of newfangled snack maching or something?

TOM (sounding slightly irritated): I'll have you know I'm not a newfangled snack machine, you jerk! I'm a…

MIKE (hastily interrupting Tom Servo): Sergeant, we're all here and we can hear you just fine, so please, go on with whatever you wanted to say to us.

SGT. FRIDAY (officiously clearing throat again): Good afternoon, gentlemen. I trust you've gotten my request for the three of you to review and comment on a story, correct?

MIKE: Yeah, but you should know, Sergeant, we usually riff on movies, not stories. The Mads might not like it, ya know.

SGT. FRIDAY: Yes, well, I've spoken to Dr. Forrester and he's fine with you helping me out. I paid him quite handsomely to borrow you three specifically for this gig.

MIKE: Okay, but why exactly do you want us to do this? We don't quite understand the purpose behind it.

SGT. FRIDAY (sighing heavily): Well, you see, I'm having some serious problems with a fanfiction author who goes by the pen name of Bamboozlepig. She has taken ALL of my fantastic shows and characters and made nothing but complete mockeries of them! Do you know how embarrassing that is? I worked VERY hard to bring some good, clean, decent shows to America during the late 1960's and 1970's, and what does SHE do? She makes fun of them, that's what!

MIKE: Yeah, but that's what WE do, Sergeant. We make fun of those horrid B-flicks that the Mads send us, ripping into them with snarky and snide comments.

CROW: Yeah, and ya gotta admit, Sergeant, that ya kinda opened yourself up to some parody there, what with that silly '905-Wild' episode of Emergency! and the horrible 'Fraud' series that was supposed to be a spin-off of Adam-12, featuring the Neopolitan Meatball otherwise known as Frank Snotrag, Jr.

MIKE (looking at Crow): His name was Frank Sinatra, Jr., not Frank Snotrag.

CROW (shrugging): Eh, same thing. He wasn't as good a singer as his daddy was, but his song 'These Boots Are Made For Walkin' was pretty catchy.

MIKE: That was NANCY Sinatra that sang 'These Boots Are Made For Walkin', not Frank Snotrag…er, Sinatra, Jr.

SGT. FRIDAY (squinting through the screen at Crow): Hey, that Roomba just talked! (looks at Bill and gestures to Crow) I knew Dyson had come up with some nifty patented cyclonic technology, but I didn't know they gave their vaccum cleaners the power to talk!

CROW (angrily): Hey, I'm NOT a Roomba or a Dyson, pally! I'm a…

MIKE (hastily interrupting Crow): Anyway, Sergeant, go on with your request.

TOM (muttering): Yeah, and it'll be a cold day in hell when we fulfill it too, you jackass. Snack machines and Roombas my ass.

SGT. FRIDAY: Well, anyway, your trademark snarky and snide comments are precisely what I want, in order to bring that damned Bamboozlepig down. I want her to FEEL what it's like to have your life's work turned into nothing but silly parodies. I want her to weep in anguish and shed bitter tears of pain when she sees what you've done to her work.

MIKE: But Sergeant Friday, you DO realize that she's actually more likely to laugh her ass off at whatever we do to her story, right?

TOM: Yeah, and besides, why do you want to do this to such a nice, sweet lady anyway?

SGT. FRIDAY (snorting derisively and scowling): Nice and sweet my ass. They said the same things about Ted Bundy and John Wayne Gacy, too. Anyway, I want you three to just RIP that damned story of Bamboozlepig's to shreds, line by line, got it? (gives crew a menacing dour-glower to drive point home)

MIKE (shivering a bit under Friday's piercing glare): Yeah, okay, whatever dude, just stop looking at me like you know what I do with the Victoria's Secret catalogue in bed at night!

TOM (trembling in fear): Sure thing, hoss, snarky comments coming right up! With a side order of snide! (turns to Mike curiously) Eh…what DO you do with the Victoria's Secret catalogue at night in bed?

MIKE (whipering to Tom): Never mind, I'll explain it to you later.

CROW (staring hard at Sgt. Friday): Is it just me, or does he look like a seriously constipated bulldog trying to take a dump?

SGT. FRIDAY (nods crisply, apparently unaware of Crow's comment): Good then. Report back to me when you three are finished tearing into the piece and making her cry. Roger. (pauses, looks confused) Um…I said, roger. Over and out. (pokes at viewscreen with finger, then leans in for an extreme close-up, allowing the SOL crew to see Sgt. Friday's nose hairs)

MIKE (grimacing in disgust): Eww, man! It looks like the Black Forest in there!

TOM (shuddering): Yeah, back up, man! We can see your sinuses, for Christ's sake!

SGT. FRIDAY (turning to Bill Gannon with a puzzled frown): Bill, how in the hell do you turn this thing off? (Bill shrugs wordlessly as Friday fumbles around, searching for the on/off button) Oh, here it is! I think this is…(the viewscreen suddenly goes blank, leaving Mike and the two 'bots alone in the screening room once more)

CROW (after a moment): Ya think maybe we should have told him that button he just pushed also blows up Cinncinati?

MIKE: Nah, and if you're living in Cinncinati and reading this right now, it was fun knowing ya!

TOM: Yeah, buh-bye!

CROW (snorts): Shoulda been Schenectady. Or better yet, Punxsutawney. Blow up that damned stupid groundhog, Punxsutawney Phil. Worthless creature.

MIKE: Well, the same could be said of you, Crow.

CROW (defensively): Hey, I'm not worthless! Who cleans the hair out of the bathroom shower drain? Me, that's who! Who changes the cat's litterbox when it needs it? Me, that's who!

MIKE (giving Crow a curious look): Um…Crow, we don't have a cat.

TOM (sounding embarrassed): Uh…my bad. That's me.

CROW (gagging): Oh, that's just disgusting, Servo! In the name of God, WHY?

TOM (haughtily): It's the way my internal gears work sometimes, that's why. And you don't hear ME complaining when you leave your stupid Kim Cattrall fanzines lying all over, do you?

CROW: Hey, don't you call Kim Cattrall stupid! She's sexy and funny and smart as hell…

TOM (snorting derisively): Yeah, for a 150-year-old actress.

MIKE (hastily): Ohhhkay, moving on to the story before World War III starts…Does everyone have their Kindle turned on? (holds up his Kindle for the other two to see)

TOM: Um…mine's an Apple i-pad, does that matter?

MIKE: Nah, it should still interface just fine, I think.

CROW: Hey, no fair, mine's nothing more than an Etch-A-Sketch! (fiddles with the dials a bit, then holds it up for everyone to see) Hey, look! I drew a square!

MIKE: Yeah, sorry about that, Crow. They only had one Kindle and one i-pad to send up to us.

CROW (gesturing to Servo): But how come he gets the i-pad when I get the Etch-A-Sketch? His arms hardly ever work, whereas mine do some of the times, so why not give the gimpy 'bot the useless piece of crap and give ME the piece of cool technology?

MIKE (sighing): Because the last time we gave YOU a new piece of technology, you downloaded one million different versions of the song 'Fish Heads' onto it, and then you plugged it into the ship's sound system and drove us all nuts with it for a goodly week, before I figured out how to unplug the damned thing and stop the insanity.

CROW (defensively): Hey, those people on the Apple commercials are always doing something cool with their i-pods, so I just wanted to do something neat with mine, that's all!

MIKE: Yes, but I can STILL hear the 'Fish Heads' chorus going through my head, even when I sleep sometimes.

TOM (singing the 'Fish Heads' song): Fish heads, fish heads, roly-poly fish heads, fish heads, fish heads, eat them up, YUM!

MIKE (scowling at Tom): Thanks, Servo, just when I thought I had MOST of the song gone from the corners of my mind, you come along and refresh it for me. (holds up Kindle once more) Anyway, if you can't see the story text on your i-pad and your…uh…Etch-A-Sketch, it will also appear on the movie screen, too.

CROW (fiddling once more with Etch-A-Sketch rather intently): Damn it, why won't this stupid thing draw CIRCLES? (bangs it in frustration, then stares at it in horror) Um…oops. I think I might have just erased the story.

MIKE: No, it's still there.

TOM (with dismay): Damn it, so this means we hafta read it anyway, right?

MIKE: Yes, and here comes the opening story title now.

CROW (STILL fiddling with Etch-A-Sketch): DAMN IT, DRAW A CIRCLE, YOU STUPID PIECE OF CRAP! (picks it up, shaking it, then pauses, looks forlorn) Aww, man! I just erased my cute little squarey-circles!

WHAT YOU LEAVE BEHIND

TOM: Interesting title! So the story's about leaving things behind, huh? Hey, I left behind an umbrella once at a theater! And when I went back to get it, somebody had stolen it. And I was seriously bummed too, 'cuz it was my favorite umbrella. It had pictures of the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers painted on it.

MIKE: I left some red galoshes behind at Washington Elementary School when I was eight. Man, was my mom pissed. She made me go back and get them, and by that time, the school was getting ready to close, and the janitor didn't realize I was there, so he accidentally locked me in the boiler room. But he heard me screaming for help, so he rescued me. (pauses, frowning) Hmm…maybe that's why I decided to become a janitor when I grew up.

CROW: Huh, I left behind my interest when I saw this story title. Not to mention a little bit of gas.

MIKE (turning to Crow): That was YOU? I thought it was Tom.

TOM (angrily): Oh sure, blame the poor little gumball machine for farting, like you always do!

MIKE: Okay, the first sentence of the story is coming up.

CROW: Yeah, wake me up when the last sentence comes up. (is still fiddling with Etch-A-Sketch) Hey, I drew an eight! (frowns, staring at the toy) Or maybe it's a 'B', I can't tell. (shows it to Mike) What's that look like to you? The letter 'B' or an eight?

TOM (leaning over and peering at Crow's drawing): Looks like two boxes having sex to me.

CROW: Hey, yeah, it does, doesn't it!

MIKE (irritatedly): Crow, Tom, behave and read the story like we're supposed to!

CROW (whining): But I'm BOH-RED!

MIKE: Tough. Deal with it.

~I was cleaning out my desk when I came across the…~

MIKE: Footlong roast chicken breast sandwich from Subway that I put in my desk drawer three weeks ago and promptly forgot about. Hmm, I wonder if it's still any good?

TOM: Yeah, by the later seasons of Adam-12, Pete Malloy REALLY needed to take some advice from Jordan on how to lose some weight by eating healthily at Subway. I think he'd had eaten a few too many chocolate-filleds at Dunkin' Donuts over his years on the force.

MIKE: You mean Jared, Tom. The weight-loss spokesman on the Subway commercials is named Jared, not Jordan.

TOM: Toh-may-toh, tah-mah-toh, who really cares?

CROW: Yeah, now I'm kinda curious. I wanna see what it is that he pulls out of his desk. I'm guessing it's nudie pics of Rush Limbaugh and Newt Gingrich in some VERY compromising positions.

MIKE: Now WHY would Pete Malloy have something like THAT in his desk drawer?

CROW (cackling evilly): For blackmail purposes. Ya know that cops don't make very much money, so with some nasty evidence like that, Pete could stand to clear a mighty big profit as far as blackmailing Gingrich and Limbaugh, and threatening to release the photos to Weekly Reader.

MIKE: Crow, he wouldn't release it to Weekly Reader, that's a children's newspaper.

CROW: All the more reason to release it to them, I say. The sooner we start corrupting America's youth, the better off we'll be! (cackles evilly again, then starts coughing, causing Mike to pound him on the back)

MIKE (looking slightly concered at Crow): Ya okay there, buddy?

CROW: Yeah, I swallowed a cackle the wrong way, that's all.

TOM: That's what SHE said. (pauses, then imitates rim shot) Ba-dump-bump!

~envelope with my name written on the back…~

MIKE: Yeah, if my name is "To Whom It May Concern."

TOM: Or worse yet, "Final Notice: Bill Due Now, Pay Up Or We Send Guido To Break Your Kneecaps For You!"

~along with the date of 1968.~

MIKE: Well, now THAT'S really pinning a date down, isn't it!

CROW (slightly confused): When was 1968?

TOM: Yeah, were years even invented back then, or did you just keep track of the days on stone tablets or somethin'?

~I was going to toss it into the box of personal stuff that I was taking with me…~

MIKE: Like my Sammy Sosa bobblehead figurine, the stapler, the three-hole punch, the computer, my framed and autographed picture of famed stripper, Miss BoomBoom ChaCha Pants, a bag of rubber bands, a box of paper clips…

CROW: A box of Bic pens, several #2 pencils, my coffee mug that says "Cops Never Get Old, They Just Lose Their Firepower", five reams of copy paper, two filing cabinets, the water cooler in the corner…

TOM: My Zen garden, my Magic 8 ball, my bottle of whiskey that I had secretly stashed in the bottom drawer…

MIKE: Yeah, that wasn't much of a secret, just about everyone knew about it and would take a nip or two themselves, when you weren't looking.

TOM: So THAT'S why I had to keep replacing my Jack Daniels fairly regularly! Here I thought maybe I was developing a secret drinking habit I didn't know about!

~figuring I'd open the envelope later on.~

CROW: Yeah, 'cuz why do NOW what you can put off until later?

TOM: Well, if he's going to open the mystery envelope later on, then why in the hell are we sitting here reading this right now?

MIKE: 'Cuz it's part of the story, that's why.

~Humidity had sealed it shut, and after today, I was going to have all the time in the world to discover its contents.~

MIKE: So…I'm guessing with the 'having all the time in the world' line, he's either retiring or dying, one of the two. I'm pretty sure it's probably the former, but I'm kinda hoping for the latter, ya know what I mean? Just so we put Pete Malloy out of his misery early on in the storyline. (pauses for a moment, then continues) And the poor readers, too.

TOM: Ooh, sah-nap!

CROW: Hey, maybe he's got the Lost Ark of the Covenant sealed in the mystery envelope! Or nudie pics of Tom Cruise and Oprah's couch in some VERY compromising positions!

TOM: All I can say is, it was sure nice of humidity to seal the envelope for him, since most people just lick it themselves, instead of expecting Mother Nature to do it. I mean, how lazy IS Pete, to just expect the elements to always seal his envelopes for him? Does he also expect the wind to just pick his letters up and carry them to the person he wants to send them to?

~But just as I started to toss the envelope into the box…~

TOM: Rather than in the garbage can, like I really should have, but I suppose if I'd done THAT, then there'd be no story, would there?

CROW: Anyway, it's probably a grocery list or something he wrote down back in the day and forgot all about. (imitating Pete) Lessee…I need to get some more Froot Loops, some milk, a loaf of bread, a pound of coffee, I Can't Believe It Tastes Like Crap butter, four calling birds, three french hens, two turtledoves…

TOM: Man, what the hell kind of meal are you PLANNING, Pete?

CROW: Are you kidding me? Just LOOK at how Pete expanded in the later seasons and you'll see that the man was OBVIOUSLY eating VERY well!

TOM: True that, friend. I'll bet there were even times Jim Reed was afraid of being near Pete, for fear that he'd slather him with butter and garlic salt and bake him in the oven for two hours at 375 degrees.

~Jim Reed…~

MIKE: Oh goody, it's the OTHER half of the fantastic crimefighting duo known as Adam-12!

CROW: Wait, I thought that we were reading a fanfic of McMillan & Wife.

TOM: I thought it was Laverne & Shirley.

~came into my office, plunking himself down in a chair across from me.~

CROW: And promptly began to spin himself around in the chair, shrieking "Whee! Whee! This is FUN!", and making himself very, very dizzy, not to mention pretty nauseous, too. I hope he doesn't ralph on my floor too, 'cuz I just had the carpeting shampooed.

"Whatcha got?" he asked me.~

MIKE (singing Eddie Money's 'Two Tickets To Paradise'): I've got two tickets to paradise, only one way to go!

CROW: I've got COOTIES! Lots and lots of COOTIES! Want some? I'll be more than happy to share! (imitating carnival barker) Cooties! Free cooties! Come 'n get yer cooties here!

TOM (singing Melanie's 'Brand New Key'): I've got a brand new pair of roller skates, you've got a brand new key…

~"Dunno."~

TOM: Mostly 'cuz I'm too damned lazy to open the mystery envelope and actually SEE what's inside of it. I mean, that'd be WAY too easy, man.

MIKE: Yeah, what if I open it and find…

CROW: Nudie pics of Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York, in some VERY compromising positions with Camilla, Duchess of Cornhole!

MIKE (patiently): Cornwall. Camilla is the Duchess of Cornwall, not Cornhole.

CROW: Poh-tay-to, po-tah-to, who really cares?

MIKE: Well, there's no such place as Cornhole, that's why.

CROW: Yeah, well there's no such place as Cornwall either, but there ya go, Horsey-Face Camilla is the Duchess of it. The Queen had to invent it so that the stupid twit could be Duchess of it, since Diana took the GOOD title of Duchess of Wales with her when she croaked.

TOM: Which only proves my theory that the British Royal Family is nuthin' but a buncha head cases. America should be mighty glad they won their independence from them in 1976.

MIKE: You mean 1776. America won their independence from the British in 1776, not 1976.

TOM: What do I look like? A history book?

CROW: Nah, you look like an empty bubble-headed freak.

TOM: And YOU look like a Hoover canister vac mated with Robby the Robot and you're the resulting love child! (imitates Robby the Robot, trying to flail his arms about, without much success) Danger, Will Robinson!

MIKE (looking at Tom): Ya know, that would be funnier if your arms actually worked most of the time.

TOM (derisively): Yeah, well your lines would be a lot funnier if your head worked most of the time, Nelson.

CROW (growling): Yeah, and who in the hell builds robots with arms and legs that don't work most of the time? A sick bastard like you, Nelson, that's who!

MIKE (facepalming, sighing): Guys, if you remember right, I wasn't the one who built you, Joel was. So you need to ask HIM why he didn't give you two working arms or legs. (points to Tom) Besides, Servo doesn't walk, he hovers. Now let's get back to the story, okay?

TOM & CROW (huffing in annoyance): Okay, fine.

~I went ahead and pitched the envelope into the box.~

TOM: Yeah, 'cuz I really didn't want to throw it out, just in case it contained something really important, like…

CROW: Nudie pics of Paris Hilton and Perez Hilton, in some VERY compromising positions!

MIKE (giving Crow a curious look): What is WITH you and nudie pics tonight?

CROW (sheepishly): I kinda sorta mighta maybe accidentally came across the Sears catalogue that was in your room this morning.

TOM: Yeah, and he's been avidly ogling the pages of electrical appliances ever since, especially the vaccum cleaners and the stoves.

MIKE: Man, that must be a helluva old catalogue, Crow…Sears hasn't put out a catalogue in decades.

CROW (moaning sorrowfully): Old or not, I think I'm in love with the Eureka canister vac on page 84.

~I continued my survey of the contents of my desk…~

MIKE: And hey, guess what! I found some stale grape Pop Rocks, a Nerf ball, some rubber bands, a ping-pong paddle, some funny looking fuzz, my Little Orphan Annie decoder ring, my Melvin Purvis Post Toasties Junior G-Man badge, part of a pogo stick, a dead Munchkin, a cigar box full of marbles, five golden rings, four calling birds, three French hens, two turtledoves, plus some rather crucial evidence that would lead to the identity of the Black Dahlia's murderer…

TOM: Which, as we all know, was really O.J. Simpson.

CROW (imitating rim shot): Ba-dump-bump! If da glove don't fit, you must acquit! (sighs wistfully) Man, I really miss Johnnie Cochran. He was like a neato lawyer version of Dr. Seuss.

TOM: Yeah. I do not like green eggs and ham, I do not like them with Kato Kaelin or Marcia Clark.

MIKE: Man, that doesn't even RHYME!

TOM (shrugging): Meh…deal with it.

~not really paying much attention to Reed.~

CROW: Yeah, 'cuz usually, I just like to pretend he's wallpaper, ya know.

TOM: Or the Invisible Man.

MIKE: Or Jessica Simpson.

CROW (shuddering): Yeesh, Jessica Simpson musta went through one HELLUVA botched sex-change operation to look THAT bad.

MIKE: No, seriously. Look at the photo of Reed and Malloy that's on the back of the box for DVD set of Emergency's first season, and I swear to God that Jim Reed looks a lot like Jessica Simpson.

TOM: What does Pete look like?

MIKE: Like he might have gas and you PROBABLY don't want to be standing TOO close to him, just in case he does.

~I didn't see him snatch up the envelope.~

CROW: Mostly 'cuz I was too busy texting to my homies right then. Yo dawgz, whut up? I B Chlln.

TOM: I B XYFI57LLMP SKDD245ZKS. OWIE!

CROW: What the hell kind of text message is THAT?

TOM: The kind that you make once you've hit a tree head on, 'cuz you're trying to text and drive at the same time.

~"Malloy, 1968."~

TOM: Well, we've established that the envelope DOES indeed belong to Pete Malloy, and once again, the author has ever so kindly detailed the year for us.

CROW: What was UP with the year 1968, anyway? Was it super important as far as an historical aspect or something?

MIKE: I think it's just foreshadowing on the author's part.

CROW: Oh, wait, I get it! She's gonna reveal that Pete was present at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis the day that Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated, and she's also going to reveal that he was present at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles when Robert Kennedy was killed!

TOM: And if she foreshadows all the way back to 1963, maybe she'll reveal that Pete was in Dallas, Texas when John F. Kennedy was assassinated! Maybe Pete was the one who pulled the trigger on JFK instead of Lee Harvey Oswald!

MIKE: Guys, I don't think she's revealing anything that dastardly about her favorite character. And besides, we all know that it was the Babushka Lady that murdered JFK, not Oswald.

CROW: Ooh, I always thought maybe it was the grassy knoll that did it, since the conspiracy theorists are always making mention of it.

~He smoothed it out.~

CROW: Then he put it on the floor and promptly did the Mexican Hat Dance around it. Ay-yi-yi!

TOM: And then he lit it on fire, making all the fire alarms and the sprinklers in the building go off, thereby flooding the entire police station out.

MIKE: And BOY was the Captain ever pissed about that! Central Division's epic flood caused by Reed's stupidity! Plus, the fire department arrived and started knocking down all the doors with their axes and dragging all the pretty women out over their shoulders and trying to give them CPR, just in case they had smoke inhalation! And we were pissed 'cuz we couldn't get in on any of the CPR action, since we were forced to act as crowd control for our own police station.

CROW: Would the firefighters by any chance be the guys from Emergency!?

MIKE: Eh…no. Technically, they work for the county, while Malloy and Reed work for the city. So in all actuality, the two crews would never really cross paths, unless at Rampart Hospital. It's a matter of jurisdictional boundaries, ya know.

TOM: Unfortunately, the fanfic writers sometimes forget that little detail of proper jurisdictions, and cross Adam-12 into Emergency! without any qualms.

CROW: Ooh, can I have some qualms? I haven't had any for a long, long time.

~"Pete, there's something kinda bulky in here…~

MIKE: Yeah, it feels kinda like it might be somebody's ear or finger…

TOM: Or maybe some other body part…

CROW: That was hacked off of a victim who was ALSO behind on paying that loan we gave HIM, and we've mailed the body part to you, just to show you that Guido and the boys mean business.

~… aren't you the slightest bit curious?"~

MIKE, TOM, & CROW (in unison): Not really.

~"Not really."~

TOM (proudly): Hey, did we nail that or did we NAIL that? Booyah! High-five! (tries to high five Mike and Crow and fails, since his arms don't work. Gives his limp arms a disgusted glare) Well, damn it, high five if my arms DID work, anyway.

CROW: Whoo-hoo, let's hear it for the gimpy 'bot, Servo!

TOM (angrily): Hey, your arms don't work half the time either, Crow, so shut your yap!

CROW: They're working now, see? (holds up his Etch-A-Sketch, on which he's drawn a near-perfect etching of the Eiffel Tower) I drew the Space Needle in Seattle! (accidentally drops Etch-A-Sketch) Damn it, I erased my Space Needle!

MIKE: Yeah, and that wasn't the Space Needle, either, it was the Eiffel Tower, you doofus.

TOM: Huh, I thought it was the castle at Disneyland.

CROW (derisively): Did it LOOK like something one of those stupid Disney princesses would come flouncing out of?

TOM: Nah, Goofy maybe, and Dopey of the Three Dwarves, but not a Disney princess.

MIKE: There were SEVEN dwarves, Tom, not three.

CROW (snorting): Yeah, 'member? There's Sexy, Dopey, Dizzy, Dummy, Sleazy, Icky, and Mr. Happypants.

MIKE (looking askance at Crow): Ya know, I'm not even gonna ask which version of 'Snow White' those dwarves came from.

CROW (astonished): You mean they came from 'Snow White'? I always thought Walt Disney hired them to work as his secret porn stars or something.

~I looked up at him as I shut the final desk drawer.~

MIKE: "Owie!" I screamed in pain. "I pinched my widdle finger in the drawer! Kiss my boo-boo and make it all better for me, Jimbo!"

TOM: Better your finger than another part of your anatomy, Pete.

CROW: Yeah, like your dinky.

TOM: Yeah, if you injure THAT, Pete, and you won't be able to service that ghastly Helen Crump anymore. (pauses a moment) I mean, providing you can stand to service her NOW, anyway, without putting a bag over her head as you boff her.

CROW (shudders): Ugh, are you KIDDING me? Have you SEEN her? Pete would need to encase her entire body in duct tape and a Hefty bag in order to boff her without throwing up.

TOM: Yeah, all I can say is that I hope Pete has an active imagination when he screws her, and can somehow manage to fantasize she's Sophia Loren instead.

CROW: Or Estelle Getty.

TOM: What? Estelle Getty? (pauses, thinking for a moment, then nods) Okay, yeah, works for me.

~"Well, I am," he said, taking the letter opener to it.~

CROW: Mostly 'cuz that's what letter openers are for anyway…opening letters, you idiot.

MIKE: Well, except for when you've got an itch on a part of your back that you can't quite reach, and then it comes in handy for scratching.

TOM (shuddering in disgust): Yuck, remind me not to use the letter opener to open mail next time, especially if you've been using it to scratch your back, Mike.

CROW: Yeah, God knows where that back has been, man.

~"Hey, have you no respect for privacy?"I snapped at him…~

MIKE: Well, DUH, obviously NOT, since Reed just opened your letter for you, Pete, without any qualms.

CROW: Seriously…I want some qualms! NOW! (pauses, frowns) Eh…what exactly ARE qualms again? Are they some sort of fig or date? Or perhaps a fruit like a plum?

TOM: They're compressed bat poop.

CROW: Eww, then I don't think I want any. (pauses) Wait, can I get some with some ketchup on top? They might be okay that way.

~…as he shook the item in the envelope out onto my desk.~

TOM: And he did the Hokey Pokey as he shook the item out. (begins singing the 'Hokey Pokey') You put your right hand in, you put your right hand out, you put your right hand in, and you shake it all about…

TOM, MIKE, & CROW (singing in unison): You do the Hokey Pokey and you turn yourself around…'cuz that's what it's all about!

~For a long moment we both just stared at the…~

CROW: Nudie pics of Shrek and Donkey in some VERY compromising positions!

MIKE: Dead hedgehog that rolled out. "So THAT'S what happened to Sonic!" I exclaimed, slapping my forehead. "I WONDERED what smelled so bad in my desk!" (pauses) "Well, it was either that or my footlong Subway sandwich, one of the two."

TOM: Lacy pink pair of ladies thong underwear that I secretly liked to wear when I was alone in my office, pretending I was Scarlett O'Hara. 'Cuz hey, I'm kinda kinky, ya know. Big tough cops like me often have some pretty squirrely secrets that hide behind the badge.

CROW (nodding): Yeah, I hear good ol' deadpan Sergeant Joe Friday and Officer Bill Gannon are into secret S&M bondage and role-playing games.

MIKE (contemplatively): Ya know, the scary thing is, I can actually kinda picture that, too. Sergeant Friday leading Bill Gannon around on a dog leash naked, wearing nothing but a leather metal-studded collar.

CROW: Um…would it be Gannon that would be naked, or Sergeant Friday?

MIKE (shrugging): I dunno. Use your imagination, Crow.

CROW (shuddering in disgust): Eww, I'd rather not. (thinks for a moment with eyes closed) Oh, GREAT. NOW I have an image in my mind of Sergeant Friday wearing thigh-high leather dominatrix boots with five-inch stiletto heels, black fishnet stockings, black lacy panties that say 'Eat Me' on the crotch, a leather and metal-studded bustier, and long black satin opera gloves, with a cat o'nine tails…

MIKE (hastily): For the love of God, STOP! I don't need to hear anymore! Keep your sick, pervy images to yourself, Crow!

TOM (groaning and shaking his head in dismay): Oh my head, my aching, aching head….I need to have Tommy Lee Jones and Will Smith come and do a memory wipe on me. I think my poor brain is broken from trying to blot out THAT ghastly image.

MIKE: Yeah, that image is definitely gonna cause some nightmares for me, I can guarantee you that.

CROW: Hey, you were the one that started it, Mike, not me. (shrugs) Besides, now you can dream of something other than those sleazy Victoria's Secret models at night.

~loop of black elastic that laid there.~

TOM: Oh, so it was a part of Pete's GARTER belt that was in the envelope…NOW I get it!

CROW: Nah, maybe it was a part of JIM'S garter belt that Pete had secretly saved.

TOM: No, 'cuz if it had been Jim's, he'd have remembered putting it into the envelope to begin with.

CROW: Maybe not though. I mean, I'm assuming that in this storyline, they're pretty old by now, and you know what they say, that memory is one of the first things that go in old age.

TOM: I thought that it was sex that was the first thing to go in old age. I mean, how ELSE do you explain all the commericals for erectile dysfunction medications out there today?

CROW: Well, see, the erectile dysfunction drugs help you remember what sex is LIKE, so you WON'T forget it, even when the memory goes kaput.

TOM: That's providing you can remember where to put what, and what exactly to do with it once it's there.

CROW (nodding): Ooh, good point. Maybe they need to invent a pill that combines the memory-enhancing components of the Alzheimer's drugs, along with the erectile dysfunction drugs, and then…

MIKE (interrupting): You'd die happy. You're getting way off-topic guys. Focus on the story.

CROW: Ya know, sometimes you are NO fun at all, Mike.

TOM: Yeah, what's wrong with us discussing erectile dysfunction drugs? It's not like YOU hafta worry about anything like that, since there's NO women up here to even get you interested in sex.

MIKE (blushing slightly): I'm only marooned on a satellite in outer space guys, I'm not dead!

TOM (whispering to Crow): So does that mean in addition to his dreams about the Victoria's Secret models, he maybe entertains pervy thoughts about US when we're asleep?

CROW (whispering back): God, I hope not. But I think I'm gonna start keeping a ball bat next to my bed from now on. Ya just never can tell.

MIKE: Guys, I CAN hear you! And NO, I don't think pervy thoughts about you two when you sleep! I'm more likely to entertain thoughts of shoving the two of you into the trash compactor and shooting you into outer space, but then I realize that I'd be pretty bored without you guys up here to amuse me, so I don't.

TOM: Aw…I'm touched.

CROW: Yeah, with insanity. (pauses, then does rimshot) Ba-dump-bump!

~Reed cleared his throat.~

TOM: Then he danced the Macarena, 'cuz dancing is so much FUN!…Hey, Macarena!

CROW: No, then he farted and flew out the window.

MIKE: No, then he hacked up a ginormous hairball on my desk and looked at it proudly, as if he'd just presented me with the crown jewels of England. "Yuck," I said, shuddering in disgust. "What is WITH you and hairballs?" Reed just shrugged. "My wife feeds me Friskies so that it cuts down on how many hairballs I hack up, but it evidently isn't working too well." "Yeah, ya THINK?" I asked sarcastically. "Jesus Christ, Reed, it looks like you've puked up sheep or something." "Well, I did have lamb chops for dinner last night," he said…apparently meaning the actual Shari Lewis puppet, Lamb Chop, rather than the meat.

~"Sorry, Pete, I didn't mean to bring back a bad memory for you."~

TOM (singing Elvis Presley's 'Memories'): Memories…pressed between the pages of my mind…

CROW: But hey, while we're bringing back bad memories, Pete, remember when we stole that pound of primo blow from the evidence room, along with that ten grand, and then we went and hired a bunch of hookers to let us snort the blow off of their naked asses while the other hookers we hired spanked us with feather dusters? (pauses, thinking) No wait, that's a GOOD memory, man! What am I thinking of?

MIKE: Or howsabout the time I got my poor little wee-wee stuck in the pencil sharpener in Mac's office, and you guys had to call the fire department to come get me out?

CROW: Nah, that's still a good memory, dude. We posted the pictures up on Facebook, and the video up on YouTube, remember?

MIKE: Yeah, and the entire Internet crashed because of it too, remember?

~Picking up the piece of elastic, I cradled it in the palm of my hand.~

TOM: Then I promptly stuffed it up my nose, while Reed danced the marimba around the room, snapping his fingers all the while.

MIKE (giving Tom a curious look): You're kinda stuck on dancing tonight, aren't you, Tom?

TOM: Meh…I watched the finale of "Dancing With The Stars" the other night. I STILL say Pamela Anderson should have won, just 'cuz she has some mighty big assets she was flauntin' there.

MIKE: Yeah, and I'm surprised those 'assets' didn't make her top-heavy and cause her to fall down all the time while she was dancing.

CROW: Well, at least if she fell, she had air bags that would deploy in case of accident.

TOM: Ooh, sah-nap!

~Surprisingly, it was still in pretty good shape.~

CROW: Unlike Reed and myself, who haven't aged so well over the years.

TOM: Yeah, I was hoping that the mystery envelope contained the secret to youthful beauty.

MIKE: Hmm…I don't know if they made Oil Of Olay back then.

TOM: Nah, I think Pete's more of a Revlon man himself.

CROW: Huh, I had him pegged as being a Maybelline fan.

TOM: No, that's Reed. Remember, he's the younger, hipper half of the fabulous crimefighting duo.

CROW (nodding): Oh, okay, so he's actually more of a Tinkerbell Cosmetics and Bonne Bell Lipsmackers kind of guy then, right?

~I guess being sealed away an envelope, even all those years ago, had preserved it.~

TOM: Well, that and the big ol' jar of formaldehyde I had it in.

~"You know, I never really heard from you what happened that night," Reed said.~

MIKE: So I'm assuming it's a super dark secret that you've had hidden away, all these years, and now finally it's coming out…Pete Malloy likes to save little pieces of black elastic inside envelopes in his desk drawers.

CROW: Well, better pieces of elastic than nudie pics of Angelina Jolie in a three-way with her weird-looking brother and Billy Bob Thornton.

MIKE (disgustedly): ENOUGH with the nudie pics already!

CROW (pouting): Seriously, man, you are NOT fun sometimes!

TOM (thinking): Hey, ya know, I could actually see that kind of nudie pic floating around out there somewhere. All three of 'em strike me as the kind that would do something like that.

CROW: Yeah, no kidding. I thought Angelina Jolie was gonna jump her brother's bones at the Oscars that time, the way they were sucking each other's faces off.

MIKE: Maybe he just liked the way her makeup tasted or something. Or maybe he was anemic and needed the minerals in her foundation.

CROW: Or maybe they'd never heard of the word 'incest' and realized it was illegal.

~"I mean, I've heard bits and pieces from the other guys…~

CROW: Yeah, 'cuz EVERYONE'S gossiping about it behind your back, Pete. You're the favorite topic at the water cooler right now, next to the series finale of LOST and Simon Cowell leaving American Idol.

TOM (confused): Wait, you mean Simon Cowell left American Idol? Where are we gonna find another bitchy Brit to be the top judge on the show?

MIKE: Well, for a good price, I'm sure you could get Sarah Ferguson, former Duchess of York. I mean, she IS for sale right now. Hell, I'm sure if you offered her enough money, she'd probably even dig up Princess Diana's body for you, just to let you see it.

TOM: Ooh, sah-nap!

CROW(shaking head warily): Oh no, it was tragic enough when Diana first died. I cried for weeks afterwards.

MIKE: Oh, because it was so sad that she died so young, and left behind her two little boys to mourn her? And also 'cuz she was quite the charity worker for the needy people of the world?

CROW: No, 'cuz every single freakin' radio station on God's green earth played Elton John's tribute song to her, 'Candle In The Wind', every hour, ON the hour.

TOM (snorting): Yeah, what a waste of a perfectly good Marilyn Monroe death tribute tune.

MIKE: Well, at least he didn't sing 'The Circle Of Life' or 'Can You Feel The Love Tonight'.

CROW: Yeah, but I wouldn't have minded if he'd dedicated 'Hakuna Matata' to her. It's a bit catchier, ya know. Or maybe 'Crocodile Rock'. (sighs, setting Etch-A-Sketch aside and bounces in seat) Man, I'm BORED! Doesn't this chick blow up any buildings or have a car chase or anything exciting like that in this piece?

MIKE: You'll just have to read on and see.

~I read the official report…~

CROW: Yeah, I read it and I thought it was pretty boring and needed some spicing up, so I added the car chase from Bullet, the motorcycle chase from The Great Escape, the alien spaceship from Independence Day, the burning of Atlanta from Gone With The Wind, the battlefield segments from Braveheart, the storming of the beaches from Saving Private Ryan, the beach lovemaking scene from From Here To Eternity, and the ending to Grease.

TOM: Yeah, the official report's not as good as Nicholas Sparks' latest romancey crap, or Jodi Piccoult's current emotional claptrap, or James M. Patterson's mystery junk that he seems to churn out on a daily basis. It'll never be a summer beach read, ya know.

MIKE (staring at Crow): Man, that is SOME mish-mash of movie scenes ya got there, Crow.

CROW: Meh…I work with what I got.

TOM: Which is why it DOESN'T work, most of the time.

~… but I've never caught your side of the story."~

MIKE: Well duh, mostly 'cuz you didn't throw it.

~I laid the elastic back down on the desktop between us.~

CROW: But not before I shot it at Reed and missed, and it landed in my coffee cup, then I accidentally drank it, therefore leaving the mystery forever unanswered of what the black piece of elastic was from and why I'd saved for it all these years. (shrugs) Not that it really mattered anyway. It was probably from my garter belt.

~"There's really not much to tell."~

TOM (bouncing excitedly in seat): Ooh, ooh, tell me a bedtime story, Daddy, PWEASE?

MIKE (singing 'The Beverly Hillbillies' theme): Come listen to my story 'bout a man named Jed, a poor mountaineer who barely kept his family fed. Then one day he was shootin' at some food, when up through the ground came a bubblin' crude…

CROW (sighing with boredom): Yeah, tell us a story, 'cuz it's not like we're really DOING anything here, except sitting on our asses looking at a piece of black elastic that's likely from Pete's garter belt, and wondering why he's saved it all these years. Was it his favorite garter belt or something?

~"But maybe now is the time to let it go."~

CROW: And if it doesn't come back, hunt it down and KILL it! KILL IT, I say!

TOM: And then stuff it and put it on display over your fireplace mantle.

~Reed's tone was gentle.~

CROW: As opposed to when he's yelling "Spank me harder, Pete, spank me harder!"

MIKE (looking askance at Crow): Eh…yeah, I don't think they swung that way, Crow.

CROW (defensively): Hey, how would YOU know? I mean, they're out there in that squad car all alone, for inordinate lengths of times between actual calls, and who's to say they didn't get bored and try a little experimenting with each other, huh? HUH?

MIKE: You're kinda pervy, aren't you?

CROW: Hey, I've been reading some gay/adult discipline fanfiction over on another site. Read that stuff and trust me, you will NEVER look at Pete and Jim the same way.

TOM: Yeah, and remember Mike, there was that one Christmas episode that Reed kept whining he didn't have mistletoe to make his Christmas perfect, and when he finally found some out in the woods, Pete called him 'Lover'.

MIKE: Yeah, but they also found that little Indian girl that was missing, and Pete didn't call Reed 'Pochantas' or 'Sacajawea' because of THAT.

CROW: You don't KNOW that, though. I mean, after the 'lover' comment, maybe they crawled into the backseat of the squad car and began furiously making out. (imitates Pete kissing someone) "Mmm, Pochantas, come play with my John Smith!"

MIKE: Because I don't think Jack Webb would have played it that way. He never would have portrayed Pete and Jim as gay lovers.

CROW (derisively): Oh, and is this the same Jack Webb that dabbles in S&M with Harry Morgan?

MIKE (sighing wearily): Okay, fine, Crow. Whatever. Pete and Jim were secret lovers. When they weren't busy fighting crime, they were parking Adam-12 in some forlorn spot and getting it on with each other. Are you happy now?

CROW (triumphantly): Soy-tenly.

TOM (with dismay): Well, I'm not. I think you've singlehandedly destroyed the nice clean image I had of Pete and Jim. THANKS for that!

CROW (shrugging): Not a problem, old buddy.

~"You can't carry it around with you forever.~

TOM: Well, unless you happen to have a suitcase you could carry it around in, then I suppose you could.

CROW: Or even a Prada handbag would do. But one of the genuine ones, not one of those fakey-fake knockoffs that are sold on street corners for ten bucks a pop. Those things fall apart the first time you stuff your Blackberry into them. (pauses, frowning) Why would anyone want to stuff fruit into a handbag anyway? It seems kinda silly to me.

TOM: It's a human thing. Humans nowadays can't go ANYWHERE without being firmly attached to their fruits. (pauses) Or their electronic gizmos.

CROW (imitating rim shot): Ba-dump-bump!

~Fact is, life has gone on."~

MIKE (singing theme from 'The Facts Of Life'): You take the good, you take the bad, you take 'em both and there you have…

CROW: The Good, The Bad, and Mrs. Garrett?

MIKE (shrugging): Meh…works for me.

~I leaned back in my chair.~

MIKE: And promptly fell over backwards on my ass, 'cuz hey, let's face it, I kinda need to lose some weight and that chair only tips back so far, ya know.

CROW: Help, LifeAlert! I've fallen and I can't get up! Send a crane to lift me back up!

TOM: And while I was prone on the floor, Reed promptly danced the Hula around me, throwing a lei upon my chest, while singing 'Tiny Bubbles'.

~"Yeah, you're right.~

CROW: Unless, of course, you're WRONG, buddy!

~It IS time to let it go."~

MIKE: Yeah, my back's getting super tired from lugging it around all these years anyway, so I might as well.

CROW: It IS time to let it go, old grasshopper, so that you may fly up onto the roadway of life and wind up smacked on the windshield of an eighteen-wheeler.

TOM (singing Kathy Mattea's '18 Wheels & A Dozen Roses'): Eighteen wheels, and a smushed grasshopper…

~And for me, as I told my story to Jim…~

TOM: Plus the half-million other readers who are reading this and thinking "What the HELL is THIS crap?"

CROW: While the other half-million has already switched over to another fanfiction realm, 'cuz they're incredibly bored with this piece.

~that horrible night came crashing back to me.~

MIKE: And then it hit me and caused a hurty-owie on my poor widdle heady.

CROW: Plus it crushed my secretary, much to my dismay, 'cuz I was SERIOUSLY thinking of sticking her in the box of personal stuff I was taking with me, simply 'cuz at home, I ain't gettin' any from Estelle Getty, and a man has NEEDS ya know.

TOM: Yeah, there's times when good ol' Bonnie Snot and the Five Little Nosepickers just don't do the trick.

MIKE (giving Tom a funny look): Bonnie Snot and the Five Little Nosepickers? What in the hell is THAT?

TOM: Your hand, man, your hand!

MIKE (rolling eyes): Okay, scene change coming up!

CROW: Damn it, you mean it didn't end there?

MIKE (sighing): Unfortunately, no.


~Howie Parker was my partner.~

CROW: And my lover.

TOM: And my mechanic.

MIKE: And my mommy.

CROW: And my purple monkey.

TOM: And my Dial-A-Prayer.

MIKE: And my long-lost twin that was separated from me at birth.

CROW: And my favorite female impersonator.

TOM: And my toilet unclogger.

MIKE: And my sister.

CROW (looking with disgust at Mike): Oh, NOW who's pervy? His SISTER? His MOMMY? His long-lost TWIN? What the hell sick kind of bastard are you, Nelson?

TOM: The kind that dreams pervy dreams of his two robot buddies while he's asleep, that's what.

MIKE (defensively): I DO NOT!

~He'd transferred in to our division two years ago from an outlying division…~

MIKE: Which was located in Paris, France.

CROW (in disappointment): Ooh, I thought you were gonna say "Paris Hilton."

TOM: Well, why not? Most of the free world has been located inside Paris Hilton at one time or another.

CROW (imitating rim shot): Ba-dum-bump! (laughs) Good one, man!

MIKE: And true, too!

~tired of his commute…~

MIKE, TOM, & CROW (in unison): From Paris Hilton.

CROW: Yeah, that'd be one helluva long commute, too. I mean, you'd pretty much have to be de-loused each time, both coming and going, wouldn't you? 'Cuz Paris Hilton kinda strikes me as the type of chick that might carry all sorts of crotch rot diseases and cooties.

TOM: Yeah, Britney Spears, too. That girl just SCREAMS pubic lice and the clap. And possibly the mange.

~and I liked working with him.~

CROW: 'Cuz he made the NEATEST balloon animals and armpit fart noises to keep me amused during our shifts!

TOM: And when I was feeling down, he'd always sing 'My Boomerang Won't Come Back' to me, while tickling me under my chin!

MIKE: And he did the coolest Jack Benny and Ed Sullivan impressions, too! Not to mention Lily Tomlin and Carol Burnett!

~He'd never prattle on about himself, nor was he cocky about his job as a police officer.~

MIKE: Yeah, prattling and cocky…two things you NEVER wanna have in a cop.

TOM: Nor do you want 'em to have an itchy trigger finger.

CROW: Yeah, it's bad publicity for the police department when one of their officers accidentally shoots and kills someone with his cocky prattling.

~He had a wife and a baby girl that he absolutely adored.~

CROW: But he had absolutely NO clue that the kid was secretly mine, 'cuz I'd carried on a hot little affair with his wife while he was commuting to and from work from Paris Hilton. (pauses) But it wasn't really Howie's wife I wanted, it was…(imitates cheesy soap opera music) Dah-dum-DUM! Howie himself that I longed for! And I vowed that NOTHING was gonna keep us apart, not Erica Kane, not Stefano DiMera, not Barbara Walters!

MIKE: Crow, Barbara Walters isn't on a soap opera, she's on The View.

TOM: Yeah, with Whoopi Goldberg, that other Whoopi Goldberg, that blonde chick that keeps shelling out kids right and left, and Dame Edna.

MIKE (sighing): It's Whoopi Goldberg, Sherri Shepherd, Elizabeth Hasselbeck, and Joy Behar, Tom.

TOM: Yeah, whatever.

CROW (shaking head with dismay): Man, I gotta get my Tivo fixed, I think. I set it to record All My Children and Days Of Our Lives and instead, I got shots of Erica Kane in a plane crash, then shots of Stefano DiMera trying to kidnap Hope Brady, then Barbara Walters was discussing breastfeeding with Elizabeth Hasselbeck.

TOM: Yeah, sounds like your Tivo might be possessed.

MIKE: Yeah, and if suddenly starts spinning in a circle and puking pea soup, it's going into the trash compactor immediately!

~I've often wondered if Sergeant MacDonald had changed the car plan that shift…~

TOM: Yeah, like instead of ALWAYS sticking us in Adam-12, what's wrong with putting us in…say…Adam-2375?

MIKE: I don't think the numbers went that high, Tom.

CROW: Plus you'd probably give the poor dispatcher a migraine trying to keep all those numbers straight. (picks up Etch-A-Sketch once more, fiddles with knobs, then holds result up for everyone to see) Hey, look! I drew some more boxes having sex with each other!

TOM (peering at Crow's work): Hey, we should animate those and put them up on the Internet as Etch-A-Sketch porn!

MIKE: And the truly scary thing is, there would actually probably be an interested market for that, too.

TOM: Yeah, like you, Nelson.

MIKE (sighing): I would NOT be interested in watching boxes have sex with each other, trust me.

CROW: Oh, so you're more of a 'triangles gettin' it on' kinda guy, huh?

~pairing Parker up with someone else…~

CROW (snorting derisively): Yeah, like someone with BRAINS. (gestures to story on the movie screen) I mean, I can see where she's going with this. She's gonna kill poor Howie-o off, you wait and see.

TOM (thoughtfully): Or at least maybe I'd be paired up with someone who didn't fart all the time in the squad car and then innocently try to pretend that awful stench doesn't exist.

~the outcome would've been different.~

MIKE: Yeah, like maybe we'd have decided to eat at In-N-Out Burger instead of Kentucky Fried Chicken for our dinner break that night. I don't care WHAT they say, those lemon wet-naps just don't cut KFC grease from your fingers and your face AT ALL.

CROW: Or maybe I'd have drawn a partner who didn't mind playing 'Guess What Body Part THIS Is!' with me.

TOM: Or maybe I'd have drawn someone who wouldn't have minded hitting up the prostitutes out on the Strip for a freebie.

~But, you can play with the could've, should've, would'ves all you want…~

MIKE: The could'ves are a LOT of fun to play with; the should'ves and the would'ves…eh…not so much. They tend to get kind of whiny and bitchy after you've played with 'em too long.

CROW: What DO you play with the could'ves, would'ves, and should'ves? A rousing game of Checkers?

TOM: Nah, mumbletypeg with switchblade knives. It's MUCH more interesting.

CROW: Nah, you can play 'Guess What Body Part THIS Is!" with 'em.

MIKE: Yeah, and you get bonus points if you can guess what the body part DOES, too!

~… fate has its own plans.

MIKE (slapping forehead): Damn it, I KNEW I should have consulted my Magic 8 ball, to see what Fate had planned for us that day!

CROW (nodding): Yep, it probably woulda said 'the future's so bright, I gotta wear shades'.

TOM: Ooh, way to get an old '80's song reference in there, Crow!

CROW (shrugging): Meh…I try.

~It was raining that night, in fact it had been raining all shift…~

TOM: As opposed to snowing, lava-ing or earthquaking.

MIKE: Or sleeting, or drought-ing, or locust-ing.

CROW: Or farting.

MIKE: Um…I don't think the city of Los Angeles can fart, Crow.

CROW (in amazement): Are you KIDDING me? Why the hell do you think they have so much smog out there? It's not 'cuz of pollution, it's 'cuz of everyone farting all the time! It's a fact, the city of Los Angeles has more farts per capita than any other city in the United States.

MIKE: Hmm, and you've done ample scientific research on this, just to prove you're right, I suppose?

CROW: Nah, I just said it 'cuz it sounded pretty impressive in an official-sounding way.

TOM: Ooh, way to sling some pretty wordies from the Roget's Thesaurus around!

CROW: Indubitably.

MIKE: And way to toss in a good word from Merriam-Webster's Dictionary, too!

CROW: Yeah, now if I can just toss in some references to British Petroleum, Ronco Sea Monkeys, Ronco Chia Pets, and Ronco Mr. Microphones, I'd have it made. I could retire on all the moola the sponsors would pay me just for mentioning that cheesy crap.

MIKE (snorting derisively): Hell, Crow, you wouldn't know what to do with money if you had it.

CROW: Sure I would. I'd buy Kim Cattrall for my love slave.

MIKE: You wouldn't know what to do with Kim Cattrall if you had her, Crow.

CROW: Would, too. I'd ask her to…uh…I'd ask her to…um…(pauses, frowning) What is it you ask chicks to do all the time with you again?

TOM (helpfully): Flee in terror, especially if it's Mike doing the asking?

CROW (shaking head): No, no, it's something else…it's on the tip of my tongue…

TOM (bouncing delightedly in his seat): Ooh, ooh, I know! You wanna ask her over for a candlelight supper, then you put on some Frank Sinatra as she does up the dishes! Then she nags at you to take out the trash, and you remind her that she needs the exercise so maybe SHE should do it, then she starts crying that you think she's fat and ugly anymore, and you tell her that no, it's not her, it's you, and then she asks you if you're having an affair with your sexy secretary named Tiffanie, and you lie and tell her that no, you're not, and then…

MIKE (sighing impatiently): Tom, is there a POINT to all of that?

TOM (thinking a moment): Eh…well there WAS, but I seemed to have lost it.

CROW (snorting derisively): Lost it, Servo, hell, you never HAD it to begin with.

~… and showed no sign of stopping.~

MIKE: In fact, the weatherman was advising every citizen of Los Angeles to build their own personal ark!

CROW: But screw bringing only two of each animal aboard. Cram as many as you want on the ship, no one cares.

MIKE: Well, they will if it sinks.

CROW: How's it gonna sink? God's piloting it, isn't he?

MIKE: No, God's just guiding it. Noah piloted it.

CROW: Schlamiel, schlamzel, who cares?

TOM: Yeah, ya know what animals you can leave behind this time? (shudders) Ostriches. Those things look hideously freaky, with their backwards knees and their long eyelashes that Liza Minnelli would KILL to have. They kinda creep me out.

CROW: Yeah, I could do without Liza Minnelli, actually. SHE kinda creeps me out. Just 'cuz she's the daughter of Judy Garland doesn't mean she can act or sing.

MIKE: And millions of gay people all over the world would beg to differ with you on that, Crow.

TOM: I thought it was Cher that they liked, not Liza Minnelli.

MIKE (shrugging): Meh…six of one, half a dozen of the other, take your pick.

~Cold, hard, driving rain, that makes you shudder every time you have to get out of the squad car.~

TOM: Well, except for that one time we got out of the squad car and danced the waltz in the rain. That was kinda fun, I gotta admit. Lotsa danubing.

CROW: Ooh, you've been reading Hans von Hozel again, haven't you?

TOM: Meh…a little bit. I'm still trying to figure out if he's for real or if he's just a clever little troll, like that chick who created 'My Immortal' was.

MIKE: No, I think that chick was for real, man.

CROW: Yeah, not even a troll could write Harry Potter fanfiction THAT bad.

~Luckily for us, the most action we'd caught that night were two minor car wrecks, a tree limb down from the wind, and a driver who was lost in the maze of Los Angeles.~

CROW: And who actually thought he was in Paris Hilton.

TOM (imititating rim shot): Ba-dum-bump!

MIKE: And let's not forget our other calls that night, either…like the cat that was stuck on somebody's roof and we shot it to get it down, the kid who was seeing dead people so we shot him to MAKE him a dead person, that strangely painted van that we stopped for speeding that said 'Mystery Machine' on the side of it, that we also wound up shooting the driver of it 'cuz it was a DOG and we thought maybe it was Cujo or somethin', plus we had that partridge in a pear tree, too.

CROW: Which partridge? David Cassidy or Shirley Jones?

MIKE: Danny Bonaduce.

CROW: Eh…I think I woulda left him in the pear tree.

MIKE: Nah, we shot him down, too. Freaky little smart-assed bastard. Flip us the bird and call US the fuzz, man.

~Howie sneezed.~

MIKE: And the balloon animal he was making me promptly exploded. "Waah!" I wailed tearfully. "You popped my giraffe, you big meanie!"

CROW: At least he didn't fart.

TOM: Yeah, that's dangerous…ya sneeze and fart at the same time and YOU explode.

CROW: And ya know, I've actually seen that happen, too.

MIKE (curiously): Really?

CROW: Nah, man, I'm just yankin' your chain. (whispers to Tom) Man, is he gullible or what?

TOM (whispering back): Or what.

~"I hate rain, it's making me catch a cold."~

MIKE: And I'd RATHER catch the 9:15 to Schenectady.

CROW: Not me, I'd rather catch Pamela Anderson's bountiful assets.

TOM: Yeah, you and about every other red-blooded male in the world.

MIKE: Well, given Pamela Anderson's lengthy dating past, probably every red-blooded male in the world HAS handled her assets, at one time or another.

TOM (imitating rim shot): Ba-dump-bump! Good one!

MIKE: Well, all I'm sayin' is, she was married to Tommy Lee and Kid Rock, so God KNOWS what kinds of creeping crotch rot and crud she has.

TOM: Yeah, sure hope she was innoculated against parvovirus and distemper, 'cuz quite frankly, that's the kind of crap Kid Rock looks like he'd have, ya know?

CROW: Yeah, and Tommy Lee would give ya a good case of the screaming meemies, the heebie jeebies, and veneral warts. Plus gonorreah. And maybe fleas.

~ He sneezed again…~

CROW: Then he farted and flew out the window, without even saying goodbye to me, damn it! Isn't that JUST LIKE a man? The minute things start getting serious, they fart and fly out the window, just so they never have to say 'I love you.'

MIKE: But he left behind one of his balloon weiner dogs, so I wasn't TOO bummed by his departure.

~… fumbling in his pocket for a handkerchief.~

CROW: And some of that primo weed we took off of the junkie we busted earlier…'cuz really, what BETTER way to spend a cold and rainy shift than rolling some doobies and gettin' baked?

MIKE (looking askance at Crow): Eh…I don't think Pete would do that, Crow. He's a cop, after all, so he's not going to do anything illegal like that.

CROW (derisively): Yeah, he's a cop just like the guy in the Village People is a cop.

TOM: Wonder if Pete dances and forms letters to the song "Y.M.C.A." with his body?

CROW: Are you KIDDING me? As pudgy as Pete is? Hell, he's doing good to even be able to get out of his chair without keeling over from a heart attack, pal!

~"Hey, you're dripping water on the floor, Howie," I said to him as we came up to a stop sign.~

MIKE: But if you'll serenade me with "Where Oh Where, Are You Tonight?" from Hee-Haw, while doing armpit farts, I'll forgive you for dripping on my floor.

TOM (singing 'Where Oh Where' from Hee-Haw): Where oh where, are you tonight? Why did you leave me here all alone?...

MIKE & CROW (joining in): I searched the world over and thought I'd found true love, 'til you met another and PPHHTHPT you were gone.

CROW (disgustedly): Man, Servo just SPIT on me! That's gross, dude! Keep your body fluids to yourself!

TOM: Hey, wait, wasn't Pete super protective of that car?

MIKE: Yeah, if Howie was dripping in it, he'd better be prepared to spend the rest of the watch out on the roof, 'cuz ain't NO WAY Pete's gonna let his car get icky, no matter HOW many balloon animals and armpit farts Howie will do for him.

~"Yeah, I'm thinking of turning Adam-12 into an ark."~

MIKE: Or maybe a pine racer in a Soap Box Derby.

TOM: Or perhaps a Lear Jet.

CROW: Or maybe a lovely origami crane.

MIKE: Or maybe Rachael Ray.

TOM: Or maybe one of Pamela Anderson's boobs.

CROW: Or maybe a leopard-print Snuggie with a free book light! (pauses) No, Ronco's Mr. Microphone! (pauses again) No, wait, Ronco's Sea Monkeys! (slaps forehead) Damn it, Ronco's President Obama Chia Pet Herb Garden! (looks hopeful) Did I manage to get 'em all in?

MIKE: Yeah, kinda.

TOM: What was UP with the appeal of sea monkeys anyway? They were just basically teeny little black eyeball dots that floated in the water, and that's it.

CROW: Yeah, the most fun you could have with 'em was to tap a finger on the side of the glass and watch 'em all freak out. (pauses) Hey, that WAS kinda fun! I oughta get some more sea monkeys again!

TOM: Well if you do, make sure you don't let Mike drink 'em this time, okay?

MIKE (frowning): Wait, that was Crow's sea monkeys I drank the other day?

TOM & CROW (in unison, looking innocent): No, it wasn't.

TOM (whispering to Crow): Wonder if he's pooped them out yet?

CROW (with disgust): I dunno, I sure as hell ain't checkin' to see if he has or not!

~"I just wish they'd put decent heaters into some of these older cars."~

CROW: Yeah, Pamela Anderson's boobs just ain't cuttin' it anymore. They're not as firm and plump as they once were.

TOM: So howsabout getting us one of the Kardashians, too, to keep us warm? I'd go for Kimberly.

CROW: I'd rather have Khloe.

MIKE: God, how many Kardashians are there, anyway?

TOM: Oh, only about a half-billion. And they're all being adopted by either Octomom, Angelina Jolie, Madonna, or Kate Gosselin.

CROW: Kate Gosselin? Why her?

TOM: She's trying for a new reality show called Kate Plus 8 Plus Divorce Settlements Plus Kardashians Equals Megamoney. She's rich, bay-bee! She can afford to get rid of the first eight kids she popped out, since they're rapidly growing out of that 'cute' stage, and she can hire the Kardashians to be her kids instead!

MIKE: Yeah, 'cuz they NEVER grow out of the cute stage!

~I swiped at the windshield.~

MIKE: Take THAT, you nasty windshield!

TOM: Hey, what'd the windshield ever do to you, Malloy!

CROW: That's right! Go pick on a windshield your own size, Pete!

~"Ain't even taking the moisture away enough to see."~

CROW: So I guess I'll just hafta roll my window down, stick my head out, and drive that way, like I usually do.

TOM: Sure, why not? Sounds mighty safe to me! I mean, it's ONLY a good way to have your head connect with a telephone pole at 35 miles per hour.

CROW (confused): Wait, they had telephones back then? I thought everyone still communicated via the Pony Express or telegraph.

~He laughed.~

CROW: Then he farted and flew out the window.

TOM: "Bye, Howie!" I yelled, waving happily at him. "Safe landings, man!"

MIKE: Yeah, call me when you get there! And make sure to pick me up some kitschy souvenirs before you return, too!

TOM: Yeah, I want a t-shirt that says "My best friend went to Schenectady and all he brought back to me was this lousy t-shirt."

CROW: Nah, you need one that says "I'm not WITH stupid, I AM stupid!"

MIKE (imitating rim shot): Ba-dump-bump!

~"Be happy we even have windshield wipers."~

MIKE: Or even a squad car, for that matter, given the city budget.

CROW: Yeah, Pete, be glad you don't have to stick a red light on your head and make the siren noises on your own as you chase after the suspects on foot.

TOM (bouncing in seat delightedly): Ooh, neato! Disco Pete! Does he come with his own little glitter ball?

CROW (after thinking a moment): Well…he has balls, and I'm sure he'd let you roll them in glitter if ya want. Bet it would tickle, though.

MIKE (looking a bit askance at Crow): Ya know, that's pretty crude, Crow.

CROW: Hey, do I LOOK like I'm a member of the Anaheim, Asuza, Cucamonga Sewing Circle, Book Review, And Timing Association? (takes deep breath) Sheesh, try saying THAT five times fast.

TOM: No, you look like you're a charter member of the Perverts of the Month club, Crow.

CROW: Well, whaddaya know, I really am!

MIKE: Doesn't surprise me in the least, either.

~He pointed to a lighted church marquee.~

TOM: And then he started shrieking with delight like a little girly-man. "Ooh, lookie, Pete, at all the pretty pretty!" he yelled in my ear. "Sheesh, get a grip on it, willya?" I grumbled. "It's only a church marquee, Howie, not the Monkees."

CROW: Why, lookee thar, Pappy! I ain't never seen me one-a them thar lighted-up square thingies with all the funny marks on it! What WILL they think of next? Flying cows?

TOM: Well, theoretically, you could put a cow on an airplane and it would fly.

MIKE: Yeah, and that's ONE flight I think I'd skip, too, especially if a cow was flying the airplane instead of actual HUMAN pilots.

CROW: Fasten your seatbelts, boys, it's gonna be a moovin' ride.

MIKE (facepalming): Oh, that was just BAD.

~"Sunday's sermon: What You Leave Behind."~

TOM: Can be found in the 'lost and found' box that is located in the church secretary's office. Currently, we are searching for the owners of the following items: A Bedazzler-studded Bible, one pink angora glove, a green umbrella, one red galosh, an earring in the shape of Prince's unpronounceable namesign, a dogeared copy of 'The Kama Sutra', a half-eaten box of JuJuBees, a fuzzy Lifesaver, a button that says 'In Case Of Rapture, Call Kirk Cameron', and a…

MIKE: Partridge in a pear tree?

TOM: Well, no, I was gonna say a hamster exercise ball, but we'll go with the partridge. It sounds better.

CROW: Which partridge?

TOM: Um…the little boy…what was his name…Buffy? Mikey? Timmy? Don Pardo?

CROW: Nah, I think it was George H.W. Bush.

MIKE: Well, that would explain a LOT of why America was so screwed up for eight years.

TOM: Yeah, that's what happens when you put Bonzo the monkey in charge of the United States. He starts flingin' poo at all the OTHER heads of state, and the next thing ya know, America's in the rest of the world's doghouse.

CROW: And then poor President Obama with his Chia Pet Herb Garden on his head hasta come along and try to make things right. (pauses) Did I get paid for mentioning the Chia Pet?

MIKE: You forgot to mention it was from Ronco, so no.

CROW (slapping forehead): Damn it!

TOM (looking askance at Crow): Oh sure, HIS arms work just FINE, while mine are just useless appendages hanging by my sides.

CROW: Hey, ya wanna talk useless appendages, take a look at Mike, man. Now THERE'S a useless appendage if I ever SAW one.

MIKE: Yeah, and you should know what you're talking about too, Crow, since you see a useless appendage whenever you look in the mirror.

CROW: I know I am, but what are…(pauses) Wait, did he just burn me?

TOM: He more than burned you, man. He CHARBROILED you.

~He sneezed again, snuffling.~

MIKE, TOM, & CROW (in unison): And then he farted and flew out the window!

~"Sounds pretty dull to me."~

MIKE: Yeah, I've read cereal boxes that are more exciting than this.

TOM: Yeah, same here. I've read toilet paper packages that had more punch than this piece does.

CROW (snorting derisively): Yeah, it's no 'War And Peace', that's for sure.

MIKE: Do you even KNOW what 'War And Peace' was about?

CROW (rolling eyes): Well, DUH! War and peace, what else?

~"Ashes to ashes, dust to dust."~

CROW: We must, we must…increase our busts!

TOM: And that's in the Bible, too!

MIKE: It is not!

TOM: It is too! It's in the Book Of Shemp, chapter 12, verse 10.

MIKE (facepalming): There IS no Book Of Shemp in the Bible, Servo.

TOM (looking puzzled): Really? I coulda sworn there was.

CROW: Yeah, well the other day, you coulda sworn we were floating through space, too.

MIKE: We ARE floating through space, Crow. We're trapped on the Mads' Satellite Of Love, remember?

CROW (with dismay): Man, I was thinking I was just sitting through a super-long intro to a Star Wars movie or somethin'.

~"How wise, Pete. The great sage of Adam-12."~

MIKE: We call him 'The Great Sage' 'cuz he's always consulting his Magic 8 Ball for advice on EVERYTHING, including which direction to turn the squad car next.

CROW: Not to mention what color boxer shorts he should wear every day.

TOM: So how do you know Pete's a boxer man, and not a briefs or a bikini brief man?

CROW: Well, given how…uh…plump he got during the later seasons, I'm just assuming he's a boxers man. I can't imagine him squeezing his ass into bikini underwear. Fat guys don't usually wear that crap.

MIKE (in amazement): Are you KIDDING me? Have you EVER been on a beach during a hot summer day? It's like looking at a bunch of Poppin' Freshes with dental floss stuck between their asses.

TOM (shuddering): Ugh, that's a food reference I could do without. Way to kill my appetite, man.

CROW: Yeah, I'll never look at cinnamon rolls again. Good lovin', fresh from the oven, my ass.

~But he shot me a wry grin, his comment meaning no harm.~

CROW: Which is a good thing, 'cuz if it HAD, I'd of punched the bastard's lights out for him.

TOM: And then stomped him, all the while yelling "Knock it the hell off with shooting me with wry grins, you jackass!"

MIKE: Yeah, those wry grins hurt like hell, man. One of them hits ya, it's bound to leave a bruise.

~I grinned back at him.~

CROW: And then I farted and flew out the window.

TOM: No, then I grabbed him and said, "Guess what I'm thinking of right now!"

MIKE: No, then I grabbed him and said, "Have I told you lately that I love you? Because I do, Howie-o, I do! I wanna marry you and have your children! I wanna grow old with you! I wanna braid flowers into your hair and then call you 'Hilda'!"

TOM (snorting): Huh, Hilda sounds like a name for a vaccum cleaner or somethin'.

CROW (giving Mike and Tom a dirty look): Hey, watch it, guys. I'll have you know that Hilda was my great-aunt Eureka!

TOM (derisively): Yeah, and we can see the family resemblance, too.

CROW (angrily): Oh, hey, YOU'RE one to talk, Servo! YOU look like something that would dispense cheap little toys, like rings that would turn your fingers green or whistles that wouldn't work when you blow on them, or Sea Monkeys that would be dead when you added the water to them!

MIKE: Man, you're determined to get that sponsor bonus, aren't you, Crow?

CROW (shrugging): Nah, I kinda miss my sea monkeys, that's all. (glowers at Mike) The ones you MURDERED, I mean.

~"For that, maybe I oughta turn around and leave you behind at that church, let you get a little bit of preaching."~

MIKE: Or some of that rockin' pneumonia and the boogie woogie flu. I hear it's pretty fun to have. Everyone who catches it spontaneously breaks into line dancing.

CROW (singing Dusty Springfield's 'Son Of A Preacher Man'): The only boy who could ever reach me…was the son of a preacher man…

TOM: Brothahs and sistahs, this heyah little lamb has lost his way, and he's come into our church to get set back on the righteous and Christian path…can I get an Amen!

MIKE: No, but I'll give you some pocket lint.

TOM: COOL! I'll take it! (pauses) Nah, on second thought, I've already got enough pocket lint. Got a hairy peppermint Lifesaver, by any chance?

MIKE: Eh…no, I do not.

~"Nah, I'd just give the poor folks a cold."~

MIKE: 'Cuz I've got the rockin' pnuemonia and the boogie woogie flu…

CROW: And I just feel so much like SHARING it with everyone in a fifty mile radius of me. Everybody line dance! (starts singing Billy Ray Cyrus' 'Achy Breaky Heart) Don't tell my heart, my achy breaky heart, 'cuz I don't wanna cry any moh-oh-ohr…

TOM: Isn't this how epidemics get started? Some bozo who doesn't think he's all that sick goes out with the creeping crud and the next thing ya know…BAM!...the CDC is stepping in and quarantining Oregon.

CROW: What's the CDC?

MIKE: Centers for Dumbshit Control.

CROW (in amazement): You mean they actually have an organization for that?

MIKE: Nah, not really, since if they did, most of the entire world would be quarantined.

TOM: Ooh, sah-nap!

CROW: I am assuming that doesn't mean us, right?

MIKE (pausing): Um…sure. Okay.

TOM: Ooh, double sah-na…(frowns at Mike) Hey, wait a minute, man, did you just DIS us?

~ He coughed.~

CROW: And then BOTH of us farted and flew out the window! 'Cuz it's so fun to fart and fly out the window with your bestest buddy in the whole wide world!

MIKE: Okay, so why don't you take Servo here and the two of YOU fart and fly out the window?

CROW: 'Cuz Servo ain't my bestest buddy in the whole wide world. Kim Cattrall is.

TOM (snorting derisively): Hell, Kim Cattrall doesn't even know you're alive, Crow.

CROW (huffs): She DOES TOO! And once she gets bored with those other three ugly hookers she's hanging with, Carrie, Charlotte and Miranda, she's gonna come live with ME!

MIKE: Again, I reiterate for you, Crow, you would NOT know what to do with her if you had her.

CROW: Sure I would! I'm tellin' ya, I'd make her my love slave!

MIKE: Do you even know what a love slave is?

CROW (frowns, thinking): Um…yeah. They go around singing love songs to you all day, and shooting you in the ass with rubber-tipped arrows.

MIKE (studies Crow for a moment): Okay, sure, that's a love slave for ya, Crow.

TOM: I thought love slaves went around feeding you bon-bons and rubbing your feet for you.

MIKE: Well, they could, if you actually HAD feet, Servo.

TOM: Yeah, and whose fault is THAT? Not mine!

MIKE: It's not mine, either. I'm tellin' ya, Joel built the two of you, so take your body issues up with him, not me.

CROW: We can't. We don't know where he escaped to.

TOM: Yeah, it's not like he left a forwarding address or anything when he left the S.O.L.

~"God, I hate colds, and the rain, and this stupid car with the worthless heater, and a partner who isn't feeling sorry for me."~

MIKE: I also hate, in no particular order: George H.W. Bush, Hello Kitty merchandise, when I accidentally bite my tongue, getting paper cuts…

TOM: John Mayer, guys that hafta go through 150 motions of handshakes before they get the actual handshake done, when items that I buy that are SO encased in hard molded plastic wrap to prevent theft that I break my freakin' fingers trying to get into it, people that drunk-dial me at 3am, just to tell me they're drunk…

CROW: whenever somebody lets a stinky fart on the elevator and everyone looks around, wondering who in the hell it was, people that butt-dial my phone number and then can't figure out why I'm pissed at them for not answering…

~I patted him on the shoulder.~

CROW: And then I grabbed him and swept him up into a sweet, rapturous embrace, the two of us clutching at one another for dear life as our lips met in a heated, passionate kiss, our moist tongues wantonly stroking each other…

MIKE: Crow, enough!

CROW: What…I wanted to add some spice into this piece, and what better way to do it than adding sex?

MIKE: Because I keep telling you, Pete doesn't swing that way, my friend.

CROW: Hey, he sure does on that OTHER website!

TOM: Yeah, and HOW! He and Jim get into some pretty hot little slashy scenes.

MIKE: Just out of curiosity, why are the two of you reading over on that site in the first place?

TOM: Boredom?

CROW: Yeah, you oughta SEE how some of the writers on that site have fun with their fanfic characters. (shakes head) All I can say is, I will never watch Emergency! the same way again.

TOM (nodding): Oh yeah. Mike and Cap were a couple, Chet and Marco were a couple, and Johnny and Roy were a couple, too.

CROW: And they all liked spanking one another, too!

TOM: Yeah, it was just one big ol' daisy chain of a spank-fest!

MIKE (facepalming): Okay, I'm limiting your guys' internet access from now on.

~" Poor old Howie. I feel even sorrier for your wife."

MIKE: Yeah, she has to put up with you more than I do. It's a wonder she don't shotgun your sorry, whiny little ass to death, if you continue to carry on about getting the common cold as if you've got H1N1.

TOM: Or the rockin' pneumonia and the boogie woogie flu. Everybody line dance!

CROW: I feel sorrier for your wife, Howie, 'cuz she has NO clue that you and I are carrying on a torrid love affair behind her back and that you're pregnant with my child. (imitating cheesy soap opera music) Dah-duh-DUM! And we're gonna run away to Pine Valley and live happily ever after, with Barbara Walters and Whoopi Goldberg as our neighbors.

TOM: Oh, yeah, and by the way, Howie-o? That kid your wife shelled out ain't yours, it's mine. Mine, I say, all mine! (throws head back and laughs evilly) MWUHAHAHAHA!

~"Why?"~

CROW: Well, DUH! I just TOLD you, you numbskull! Not only have I been servicing your wife, I've also been servicing you!

TOM: Yeah, I can have my cake and EAT it, too! So THERE! (pauses) But man, it DOES get tiring pretty fast. Gotta remember to take my Geritol on a regular basis, to keep my strength up.

~"She has to take care of you when you get sick, not me."~

MIKE: Yeah, and it's likely a good thing Howie's wife IS the one to take care of him when he's sick, 'cuz I have a feeling that if it were up to Pete, his idea of "care" would be to suit up in Haz-mat gear, hose Howie down with industrial strength antibacterial agents, and lock him into a quarantine room until he was done being sick.

CROW: Well, either that or shoot Howie into outer space.

TOM: Uh…I don't think outer space had been invented yet in that era, Crow.

CROW: Oh yeah, I keep forgetting. God hadn't quite finished making the Universe yet. (pauses) That is, if you're going with the Creationism theory. If you're going with the scientific theory that man descended from apes and that the universe was created by the Big Bang, then good luck with that. Too much science-y crap makes my heady hurty.

~I steered the car down an alley that ran in back of a warehouse.~

MIKE: And I hit what I THOUGHT was a speedbump, but it turned out to be a wino that was passed out in the alleyway. I think I mighta maybe kinda sorta accidentally killed him. (pauses) Ooopsie-daisy, guess we won't report THAT little incident to the watch commander, will we?

CROW: Yeah, what's one less wino in the world?

TOM: Oh no, we ran over Mr. Bojangles! Now who'll dance for us in his worn-out shoes?

CROW: Savion Glover, maybe?

TOM: Nah, Danny Glover. He'll tap dance with Mel Gibson and Joe Pesci in Lethal Weapon 5000: The Revenge Of The Saddle Oxfords.

~"Think we'll take a run down the alley, then we'll call it a night."~

CROW: Yeah, and what say after work we go hit the Pink Pussycat gentlemen's club and watch my favorite stripper, BoomBoom ChaCha Pants, pull one dollar bills out of our fingers with her ass cheeks? She's pretty talented at doing that!

TOM: Better yet, why don't WE go dancing at the strip club and try to pull one dollar bills out of each other's outstretched fingers with our ass cheeks?

MIKE: And who says cops aren't multi-talented?

~We surprised the guy who was trying to pry open one of the office doors to…

CROW: Pamela Anderson's boobies!

MIKE: The Democratic National Headquarters at the Watergate Hotel!

TOM: Canada! No, wait, Mexico! No, wait, Canada! They're always trying to get OUT of Mexico, not INTO it.

MIKE: Well, they're also always trying to get out of the state of Arizona, too, with its new immigration laws that have gone into effect.

TOM: Well, I don't blame 'em for wanting to get out of Arizona. I mean, it's like Florida. It has more Metamucil, Ben Gay, varicose veins, support hose, grampas in berumuda shorts and black socks with sandals, and grammas with big floppy sunhats and ginormous sunglasses than any other state per capita.

TOM: But Florida also has Disneyland. Arizona doesn't.

CROW: No, all Arizona has is cactuses, desert, sand, heat, and heat rash. And sand fleas.

MIKE: Um…I think the plural of 'cactus' is 'cactusi', not 'cactuses'.

CROW (shrugging): Meh, cactusi, cactuses, I don't have my Merriam-Webster's Dictionary handy right now, so who really cares?

TOM: Man, you're still trying to get that sponsor bonus, aren't you, Crow?

~… the warehouse.~

TOM: Wait, what KIND of warehouse is it that he's breaking into? Does it have some primo stuff in it to steal, like tv sets or stereo systems, or is it filled with something dull and boring, like wooden pallets or pianos?

CROW: I say it's a piano warehouse the idiot is breaking into. "I'm like…super bored, ya know, so I thought I'd like…ya know, break into this like…piano warehouse and like…steal myself a baby grand."

MIKE: Or a Baby Ruth. Give myself the old 'five-finger discount'.

CROW: Better yet, just give yourself the finger.

TOM (imitating rim shot): Bah-dum-bump!

CROW (seductively): And after I get done tickling the ivories, what say you guys let me tickle your…

MIKE (irritatedly): CROW!

CROW (defensively): What…all I was gonna say was 'tootsies'. What's wrong with that?

~He dropped the crowbar he was using with a metallic clang…~

MIKE: Actually, it went more like "owie!" instead of a metallic clang, 'cuz it kinda hurted the crow bar when he dropped it so suddenly-like.

~… but oddly enough, he didn't try to run from us…~

MIKE: Which made us realize right away that we weren't exactly dealing with the brightest bulb of the bunch here, criminal-wise.

TOM: Yeah, this guy would make even the crooks on America's Dumbest Criminals look like Einsteins.

~… he just stood there…~

MIKE: And then he said, "Pardon me, but do you have any Grey Poupon?"

TOM: No, then he said, "Excuse me, but do you know the way to San Josè?"

CROW: No, then he said, "Hey, do you validate parking here?"

~Parker snagged up the radio mike.~

MIKE: And said, "Yeah, I'd like to order two Whoppers with cheese, hold the pickles on one, plus I'd like two large orders of onion rings, and two large Pepsis."

TOM: And the dispatcher said, "That'll be $7.50, please pull up to the next window."

~"Dispatch, this is One-Adam-12.~

TOM: And we're comin' in to you on the Kewl 105 FM. Next up is a classic rock-block of Clapton's 'Layla', Led Zep's 'Stairway To Heaven', The Doors' 'Light My Fire', Meatloaf's 'Paradise By The Dashboard Light', and Crosby, Stills & Nash's 'Suite: Judy Blue Eyes.'

MIKE: Man, that's a helluva long list of songs there, pal.

TOM: Hey, when the DJ's gotta go take a super-long dump, that's what he throws on the air while he's in the can.

~We have a 459 suspect in the alleyway behind Pollet's Warehouse at 4500 Clearwater Drive.~

MIKE: Oh, and dispatch, we're kinda hoping you actually know what a '459' suspect is, 'cuz we really don't.

CROW: Ooh, is it a code for 'someone's flashing their dinky in the bushes over there'?

TOM: No, that's California Penal Code Section D-125643.5, subsection F-3378, sub-sub section 867-5309…

CROW (singing '867-5309/Jenny'): 867-5309…

TOM (echoing Crow): 867-5309…

MIKE (interrupting): Guys, enough. Then I said to the would-be burglar "Hey buddy, whatever it is that you're planning on stealing from that warehouse, would you consider cutting us in on half of it? 'Cuz it's not like we cops really make all that much money, ya know."

CROW: Yeah, but do you guys KNOW how hard it is to fence a baby grand? It's not like you can exactly haul it to a pawn shop and get rid of it, unless you have several guys with strong backs and a moving van.

~Request a back-up unit."~

TOM: And the National Guard.

CROW: And the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders.

MIKE: And the cast of 'Gilligan's Island', especially Mary Ann and Ginger, but we'll take the Professor, too, 'cuz he's brainy and good at inventing things.

CROW: Well if he was THAT brainy and good at inventing things, why in the hell didn't he ever invent a way to get them all of that stupid island?

MIKE: I think he was secretly hoping to bang Mary Ann.

TOM: Or maybe Mrs. Howell.

CROW (lasciviously): Ohh, LOVEY! Man, she was HOT!

MIKE: I still say you're pretty pervy, Crow.

TOM: Nah, if he'd said the Skipper was hot, THEN I'd be worried about him being pervy.

~We both got out of the car and approached the guy.~

TOM: And then we all joined hands and played 'Ring-A-Round The Rosie'. It was SO FUN! And then we brushed each other's hair and braided it, and we got all swoony over that DREAMY Taylor Lautner and the Jonas Brothers, and then we posted some pretty new unicorn stickers in our sticker books…

MIKE: And then we told each other some scary ghost stories, and then we had a pillow fight, and then we pricked our fingers and pinky swore that we were all blood brothers, forever and ever and ever…

CROW: And then we all got butt nekkid and enjoyed a rather delightful three-way in the rain, in the alley in back of the warehouse, while the dead wino I'd accidentally run over looked on.

MIKE (disgusted): CROW!

~"Okay, pal, hands where we can see them…"~

TOM: And now do this…try patting your head and rubbing your stomach at the same time!

MIKE: Wait, he didn't say 'Simon Sez!'

CROW (in a seductive voice): Mmm…I certainly know where I'd LIKE to see your hands at, Mr. Sexy Burglar-man. All over my butt nekkid body…

MIKE: CROW! And it's 'buck nekkid', not 'butt nekkid.'

CROW: Eh…it's basically the same thing, ain't it?

~...was the last thing Parker ever said…~

TOM: Well, no, he recited Lincoln's Gettysburg Address first…

MIKE: Then the Pledge Of Allegiance…

TOM: Then the Declaration of Indepence.

MIKE: And the United States Constitution.

CROW: And then he sang the National Anthem…

MIKE: And four F-15 fighter jets flew over…

TOM: And Darrell Waltrip said 'Gentlemen, start your engines! Boogedy, boogedy, boogedy, let's go racin'!'

MIKE: And then the Daytona Five-hunnert was offically ON, Bay-bee!

CROW (bouncing excitedly in seat): Whoo-hoo, rednecks, stock car racin', and BEER! Three of my favorite words!

TOM: Yeah, ranks right up there with 'turn your head and cough, please.'

CROW (in surprise): WHAAAT?

~as the suspect suddenly decided to run.~

MIKE: Oh sure, NOW the dumb shit decided to take off, AFTER he's gotten caught red-handed, trying to break into a piano warehouse.

CROW: Well, either that, he suddenly remembered he had a more pressing engagement somewhere else.

TOM: Yeah, like with Miss BoomBoom ChaCha Pants down at the Pink Pussycat.

~Parker splashed down the alleyway after him…~

MIKE: Yelling in a squeaky, high-pitched voice, "Aw, c'mon, Mister, wait for me, PWEASE!"

TOM: Yeah, you know my short stubby little legs can't run that fast!

CROW: Hey, Mister, I found my Grey Poupon, so wait up!

~… as I ran back to the car…~

CROW: Because I was hoping that if I was able to get into the car fast enough, I MIGHT be able to put the pedal to the metal and hit both the suspect AND my partner, thus ensuring I'd get a NEW partner tomorrow who LOVED playing 'Guess What Body Part THIS Is' with me!

~… to call out we were in pursuit.~

MIKE: And also that we had a mighty convoy, rockin' through the night!

CROW: No, Pete called out that he needed some more chocolate filleds, STAT!

TOM: Ooh, you sound like one of the guys on Emergency!

CROW: Really? Which one? Dr. Brackett, Dr. Early?

TOM: Henry the dog.

MIKE (imitating rim shot): Ba-dump-bump!

~Then I heard the blast of a shotgun…~

MIKE: Plus somebody's damned annoying car alarm going off, the clatter of garbage cans tipping over, dogs howling…

CROW: And William Hung singing "She Bangs"….

TOM: And some fat guy from an upper story window yelling, "Hey, will you assholes keep it down out there? I'm tryin' to watch Rachael Ray!"

~… and turned to see Parker fall heavily to the ground.~

CROW: "Ooh!" exclaimed Parker, sounding somewhat dismayed. "I think he done got me, Pete!" Parker looked at the bullet hole in his body. "Yep," he confirmed sadly. "He done got me, Pete." Then Parker promptly croaked. "Oh no!" I yelled. "That big ol' meanie burglar man shooted my partner and done maked him daid!"

MIKE: Then I looked up and suddenly saw 99 Luftballoons floating by overhead…

TOM: All in the shapes of weiner dogs and giraffes…

CROW: Except for that one that was left in the shape of a dinky. (pauses) And it made me very happy, too. 'Cuz it showed that even in death, what's-his-face was thinking of me, by making me a balloon animal in my favorite shape.

MIKE: CROW!

~I grabbed the mike…~

TOM: Ooh, KINKY! Pete grabbed YOU, Mike!

MIKE (dryly): Ya know, you guys are complete idiots sometimes.

CROW: Hey, what about YOU, pal? You sit here and talk to robots all day!

MIKE: Yeah, and ya know, I seriously wish one of you was a Roomba, too. The space under my bed and behind the refrigerator needs vaccuming.

TOM: Not me. I wish I were a popcorn popper.

CROW: Yeah, I think I'd rather be a microwave. (pauses) Or maybe a cell phone. I'd like to assist humanity in any way I can, particularly by giving them cancer.

MIKE (looking askance at Crow): How does THAT assist humanity?

CROW: Does away with those annoying idiots that yap loudly on their cell phones in public places, one jackass at a time.

~… yelling out that we were under fire…~

CROW: And could somebody please send in the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders to save us?

TOM: Or Mrs. Garrett? And Natalie and Tootie? But not Blair, 'cuz she was kinda bitchy, and not Jo, 'cuz she was kinda butchy. (pauses) Heh heh, Bitchy and Butchy, it sounds like a new Disney cartoon about some lesbian princesses. (pauses again) And ya know, I think I'd watch something like that, too. Just for…ah…research purposes.

MIKE: And with dismay, I realized that because my department considered me to be like Barney Fife, they had only given me one bullet for my gun, and I'd already used IT shooting at a pair of tennis shoes that were hanging from a telephone wire, trying to knock them down.

TOM: Why would Pete shoot at a pair of tennis shoes?

MIKE: They were Air Jordans, man.

CROW: And in his size, too!

~… officer down.~

MIKE: Dooby-doo-down-down…

TOM: Comma, comma, down dooby-doo-down-down…

MIKE, TOM & CROW (in unison, singing Neil Sedaka's 'Breaking Up Is Hard To Do'): Breaking up is haa-ard to-ooh doo!

~The guy continued running down the alleyway…~

MIKE: Well, actually, it was more of a leisurely stroll.

TOM: Or maybe he limped.

CROW: Or maybe he breakdanced. Yeah, that's it. He did the Worm around the corner and I was like…"Go, Dude! ROCK that funky worm!"

~… rounding the corner.~

TOM: Well, I guess it's better than running into it, right?

MIKE: Well, it certainly would have brought an end to the story right there…an end that really should have come right after the opening sentence of this piece.

~There was the screech of tires…~

MIKE: And once again I wondered why in the hell I decided to take the Santa Monica Freeway during rush hour traffic, seeing as I was stuck behind a little Asian guy who could barely see over the dash of his Yugo, driving along at 25 miles per hour with his right turn signal on for the last eight miles. "Damn it!" I yelled in frustration at him. "Move that damned Yugo before I run it over with my Hummer!"

~… yells…~

MIKE: You sank my battleship!

CROW: You got your peanut butter in my chocolate!

TOM: Where's the beef?

~… gunfire.~

MIKE: Oh no, I accidentally shot the guy! (pausing with surprise) Hey, I didn't know I had an extra bullet! Whaddaya know?

TOM: Sure hope he WAS the suspect that just got shot, 'cuz if he wasn't, I'm screwed!

CROW: Nah, we'll just drag his body over here to where the dead wino is that I ran over with Adam-12, and I'll plant the throw-down piece that I keep in an ankle holster in his hand, to make it look like HE shot the suspect.

TOM: Yeah, and it works every time, too!

~Water dripped off of my coat as I knelt down next to Parker.~

MIKE: I poked him in the eye with my finger. "Hey, you alright?" I asked solicitously, poking him a few more times 'cuz he didn't answer me. And I gotta admit, it was kinda fun, in a grody, squishy kinda of way.

TOM: While my coat dripped on him.

CROW: Not that Howie really cared, what with him being dead and all.

TOM (sighing wearily): Man, this sure is a drippy story.

CROW: You said it!

~ Bright red…~

MIKE: But we'd also settle for bright green.

TOM: Or neon pink.

CROW: Or burnt sienna.

MIKE: Or purple mountain's majesties.

TOM: Or that really deep slate grey color.

CROW: Or electric blue.

~… blossomed viciously…~

CROW: Hey, how can something blossom viciously? That line doesn't make much sense.

TOM: Well, I suppose if it were a Venus Flytrap of some sorts, it might blossom viciously then.

CROW: Oh, so NOW she's turned Howie into a Venus Flytrap, just like Audrey from 'The Little Shop Of Horrors'? Whoo-hoo! Way to GO, author-lady! So is Howie-o gonna like, turn into a ginormous man-eating plant and devour Pete now or somethin'?

~… on his rain coat, running in rivulets onto the wet pavement.~

MIKE: And on my 99 Luftballoons.

TOM: That were all in the shapes of giraffes and weiner dogs.

CROW: Except for the one that was in the shape of a dinky.

MIKE: CRO…no, what, ya know, I don't really care anymore. Say whatever the hell you want, pal.

CROW (gasping with delight): You MEAN it? I can say whatever I want, no holds barred?

MIKE (nodding): Yep, knock yourself out.

CROW: Aww-right! Pink and purple monkey nipples! Suck my bananas! Tickle my Froot-Loops! Paint my Munchkins! Lick my weiner dog!

TOM (sounding startled): Man, are you STONED or something?

MIKE (looking at Crow with curiosity): Yeah, what the hell is THAT gibberish?

CROW (defensively): So I couldn't come up with anything particularly racy at that point in time, so sue me!

MIKE: I would, but if I won, it would be in name only, 'cuz you're flat broke, man.

CROW: True that, friend. Robots don't make much money.

TOM: Hey, we don't make ANY money, Crow.

CROW: Well, I do, selling nudie pics of you on the Internet.

TOM: You do WHAT? (pauses) And is it always of my best side?

CROW (snorting): Servo, you don't HAVE a best side.

~I put my hand to his chest…~

TOM: And proceeded to play him like a pair of bongo drums…

CROW: Beating out the song "Wipeout" in perfect rhythm. Man, do I ROCK the Surfaris or WHAT?

MIKE: Or what, I'm afraid.

~… horrified…~

MIKE: I was HORRIFIED, I tell ya, just HORRIFIED!

CROW: And just a teensy bit grossed out.

TOM: And ever-so-slightly gassy.

~...at the sticky crimson that covered my palm.~

MIKE: And I thought to myself, "Man, I should NOT have touched THAT! EWWW! ICKY!"

TOM: I proceeded to use his blood to fingerpaint the phrase, "All work and no play makes Petey a dull boy," all over the nearby walls, the pavement, the squad car, the dead suspect, the dead wino…

MIKE: My 99 Luftballoons that were all in the shapes of giraffes and weiner dogs…

CROW: Except for the one that was shaped like…MMMPH! MMPH!...Mike, get your stupid hands OFFA me!

MIKE: I know what you were gonna say next… the one that was in the shape of a dinky.

CROW (angrily): I WAS NOT!

MIKE: Okay, so what WERE you going to say, Crow?

CROW: Um…ah…eh…(sighs)…okay, I WAS going to say the one that was in the shape of a dinky, are you satisfied?

TOM: Is that a rhetorical question or something? Mike's NEVER satisfied, Crow. You should know that by now.

~And, as lightning flashed…~

MIKE: And I thought, "Hey neato, the alleyway has suddenly turned into a disco!" Lemme go throw on my lime green leisure suit, big gold medallion, and five-inch platform shoes! (singing the Trammps 'Disco Inferno') Burn, baby, burn!

~...and thunder rumbled overhead…~

TOM: Aw, how cute! God and the angels are bowling!

CROW: How do we know it was the THUNDER that rumbled and not Pete? I mean, he coulda had tacos for lunch, ya know.

~...Howard Parker…~

MIKE: Who now?

~...husband, father, police officer, and friend…~

CROW: Oh, and let's not forget 'secret lover, champion armpit farter, fondue finger licker…'

TOM: And primo maker of balloon animals, midget tickler, coal miner's daughter…

MIKE: And fanboy of 'Extreme Makeover: Home Edition', especially that sexy Ty Pennington , beloved squad car sneezer, wooden nickel giver, lover of hairless guinea pigs…

CROW: Yeah, that what's-his-name, he was just an incredible, all-around great guy. I'll miss him SO much. (pauses) But goody goody gumdrops, I get a brand-new partner tomorrow! Wonder how soon I can introduce the 'Guess What Body Part THIS Is!" game to him, without freaking him out?

~… left his life behind in that filthy little alley…~

CROW (with relief): Whew, good thing it's just his LIFE he left behind, and not something REALLY important, like a pair of gloves or an umbrella or a watch.

TOM: Or all the phone numbers of the chicks that would date Pete, pudgy or not.

MIKE: Or the entry code to Fort Knox.

~...the cold, harsh rain washing his blood away.~
TOM: Well, hey, whaddaya know, she finally put that rain to good use!

MIKE: Yeah, I know whenever I need blood washed out of something, I always make the rain do it. The washer JUST won't do.


~Other police officers came in to the alley…~

MIKE: And began pointing at me and laughing, just 'cuz I was still clutching my dinky-shaped balloon animal that Howie made me RIGHT before he croaked.

TOM: And they all whined, "Pete, we're BOH-RED! Play with us!"

CROW: Yeah, okay, I'll play with ya, guys. It's a game called…

MIKE: Crow, this had better not be something disgusting that you're going to say next.

CROW: Um..and if it was?

MIKE: Keep it to yourself.

TOM (whispering to Crow): But be sure and tell me what it was after we're done here.

~I didn't pay the slightest attention to them.~

MIKE: I was still sadly staring at my 99 Luftballoons.

TOM: That were in the shapes of weiner dogs and giraffes, plus the one that was shaped like a dinky...

CROW: And also, I really considered the other officers nothing more than wallpaper anyway, so they were easy to ignore.

~Hell, I didn't even care if they'd gotten the suspect.~

MIKE: Yeah, I was more worried about finding out who put the bomp in the bomp de bomp de bomp…

TOM: But NOT who put the ram in the ramalama dingdong.

CROW: Yeah, we all know it was O.J. Simpson that did THAT.

MIKE (doing rim shot): Ba-dump-bump!

~I could hear the babble of their voices…~

TOM: And I wondered to myself when exactly they started teaching the art of speaking in tongues at the police academy.

MIKE: And they were saying, "E.T., phone home!"

CROW: Nah, they were all saying, "Kiss mah grits!"

TOM: No, they were saying "Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there!"

MIKE: No, they were saying "Here's to good friends, tonight is kinda special!"

CROW: No, they were singing "I can bring home the bacon…and fry it up in a pan…and never, never let you forget you're a man…Enjoli!"

~...back and forth…~

MIKE: And up and down, and all around!

TOM (bouncing in seat excitedly): Oh boy, WHEE!

~...as I stared into the dead eyes of my partner.~

MIKE: And thought "Gee, whaddaya know! Here I've been your partner for three years now and I never knew that your eyes were blue!"

CROW: And such a dreamy blue, too! Too bad you had to go and croak so suddenly-like, 'cuz you and I could have SERIOUSLY had some fun down at the Butt Pirate Bar & Grill.

TOM: And I thought to myself, "Ya know, maybe I should poke him a few more times in the eyeballs, just to make sure he's really good and dead, and not just playing possum." So I did. "Yep," I told myself. "He's still dead."

~I didn't even look up as Sergeant MacDonald and Lieutenant Moore knelt down next to me.~

MIKE: Mostly 'cuz I knew if I looked up at Mac, we'd start laughing at the big fart Val just cut.

TOM: Yeah, and it's not proper to laugh at farts when there's a DEAD guy lying there.

CROW: It IS perfectly acceptable however, put your hand on his jaw and move his mouth like he's a ventriloquist's dummy, talking for him in a squeaky, high-pitched voice. (imitating ventriloquist's dummy) "Hey, who cut the ginormous stinky fart here? It sure wasn't me! 'Cuz I'm dead! But maybe ya might wanna poke me a few more times in the eyeballs, just to make sure!"

~"Pete…~

MIKE: Yeah, that's my name, pal, don't wear it out!

TOM: Actually, I kinda prefer to be called BoomBoom ChaCha Pants, if you MUST know.

CROW: And when we're done here, what say we go over to the Butt Pirate Bar & Grill and I try to snatch dollar bills from your hands with my butt cheeks?

~… we're gonna need you to come with us," Mac said.~

CROW: Yeah, and then we're gonna strip you nekkid, shave you bald, and paint you bright red and walk you around the city streets, just 'cuz Val and I have always wondered what it would be like to stroll Los Angeles with a big ol' nekkid and bald, bright red Peter.

MIKE (giving Crow a disgusted look): Ya know, I ain't even gonna TOUCH that one with a ten-foot pole.

CROW: Aw, please?

~I didn't move.~

TOM: 'Cuz somebody was stepping on my hand, damn it!

MIKE: 'Cuz I wanted to put my acting class lessons to some really good use, so I was going to pretend I was a shy little bunny rabbit, and sit as still as I possibly could! It's a combo of Method acting and Lee Strasberg acting, with a little bit of Marlin Perkins'Wild Kingdom thrown in.

CROW: 'Cuz I knew if I moved, I'd end up letting that big fart that was hanging around down there, and that would NOT be good. I mean, Val had already cut one, and that was bad enough. I didn't want anyone thinking that all we could do was stand around here and gaze at the corpse and fart.

~"Could someone put a blanket over Howie?~

MIKE: Or maybe just a napkin will do, too.

CROW: Or a howsabout a Wet-Nap?

TOM: A Kleenex maybe?

~He hates the rain."

TOM: Oh, that Howie, he hates a LOT of things.

CROW: Yeah, like people that drive for 100 miles on the freakin' freeway with their right turn signal blinking, doing a consistent 45 in a 70 mile-an-hour zone…

MIKE: Or people that wander into a news reporter's live story and begin flashing peace symbols with their fingers, or devil horns, or waving, or mouthing 'Hi Mom!' to the idiots back home…

TOM: Or those stupid child-proof lids on Tylenol bottles. You actually make your headache WORSE by trying to get into the bottle in the first freakin' place.

~"Pete, he's dead."~

MIKE: Well, no, wait, let me poke him in the eyeballs a few times, just to make sure. (Mimes Val poking Baker in the eyeballs with his finger) Yep, he's good and dead, I'd say.

TOM: Or either that, he's just able to really, really sleep good…with his eyes open…and the rain pouring down…and you idiots poking him in the eyes all the time.

CROW: What is WITH the author and the rain?

~Moore's voice was gentle.~

CROW: And I shivered with pleasure, 'cuz the other times I'd heard Val's voice, it was all sexy and raspy, as he was begging me to keep spanking him with my official LAPD paddle o' discipline!

TOM: Yeah that slashy site is BIG into discipline and spanking. (pauses) Hmm, think when we get done here, I might wander over and read some more on that site too.

CROW: Hey, it's gotta be more exciting than THIS crap is.

~I looked up then…~

MIKE: Mostly 'cuz looking at the dead guy was getting pretty boring.

TOM: Yeah, it's not like he was actually DOING anything interesting, except just lying there, getting rained on. I mean, I've had more fun watching paint dry.

CROW: Yeah, or a cat hack up a hairball.

~… not at my commanding officers, nor at my fellow officers, but at the pouring sky.~

TOM: And I shook my fist angrily and yelled, "As God is my witness, I will never go hungry again!"

CROW: And then I asked Mac and Val if they'd make me a dress out of curtains.

TOM: Yeah, I had my eye on a LOVELY set of lace sheers and floral print damask that I thought would make a SMASHING gown! I wanted it to have a lovely, simple bodice that was tightly fitted, accentuating my dainty waist; with poufy long sleeves that came to a tapered point at my wrists; while the skirt of the gown was full, edged in lace, and had tons and tons of starched petticoats underneath it that swayed SO entrancingly whenever I moved!

~For just a second, I hated Howie Parker for dying.~

MIKE: 'Cuz we pinky-swore that in everything on our shift, whether it be eating chocolate-filleds, going potty, singing in the squad car, or dying, I'd always be the one to go first.

TOM: Yeah, and now what's-his-face has broken our pinky swear promise, so now I'm gonna hate him forever and ever, until he dies. (pauses) Oh wait, he IS dead, isn't he?

CROW: Yeah, but poke him a few more times in the eyeballs JUST to make sure.

~It quickly turned to anguish.~

CROW: And then heartburn and indigestion. And I suddenly realized, I REALLY probably shouldn't have eaten five tacos in one sitting.

TOM: Nor the two helpings of refried beans.

MIKE: Yeah, something's gonna be refried, that's for sure.

CROW: And ya don't wanna be lighting any open flames when it does, either.

~I shivered as the rain hit my face, mixing with tears.~

CROW: And some snot, too. 'Cuz, DAMN, it be COLD out here, and my nose be runnin' like cah-razy! Gimmie some kleenex, man!

TOM: I was cryin' 'cuz my main balloon animal-making friend had just died, and where am I gonna find another one that can make such wonderful balloon animals in the shapes of giraffes and weiner dogs…

TOM, MIKE & CROW (in unison): And ones that were in the shapes of dinkys?

~"That should be me lying there…~

MIKE: Yeah, 'cuz we pinky swore I'd go first in EVERYTHING, damn it!

~Howie's got a family to take care of…~

TOM (singing Kenny Roger's 'Lucille'): You picked a fine time to leave me, Howie Parker…with four hundred children, and crops in the field….

MIKE: Tom, it's 'four hungry children', not 'four hundred children'.

TOM: Whew, that's a relief! 'Cuz I can't say I'd honestly blame Lucille for leaving four hundred children…I mean, what the hell WAS she, Octomom?

CROW: No, Angelina Jolie.

MIKE: And yet another fine pair of examples of people who should NOT be allowed to procreate…EVER.

~… my voice trailed off into a hoarse whisper.~

TOM: Yeah, and the reason my voice was a hoarse whisper was 'cuz I was standing outside of Rush Limbaugh's bedroom window last night, yelling my proclamtions of undying love to him. Then he turned the garden hose on me, damn it! So I didn't get to sing him Marvin Gaye's 'Sexual Healing' like I wanted to. (sobs dramatically) Rushie, baby, why don't you love me anymore? I still love you!

~"It should be me."~

MIKE: Yes, it should always be ME…me me me me me!

TOM: 'Cuz that's who the story is about, dumb ass!

~"Pete…"~

MIKE: "Yeeessss?" I replied, doing my best Lurch imitation from the Addams Family.

TOM: Hey, ya know, you could actually cross those two shows into something like 'The Addams Family 12'!

CROW: Oh, I'd watch that!

MIKE: Crow, you'd watch laundry spinning in the dryer.

CROW (nodding): That's 'cuz I swear the socks are getting it on with the sheets, and the jeans are humping the towels.

~Mac's voice sounded desperate.~

TOM: Which made me wonder when the last time Mac got laid, if his voice sounded THAT desperate.

CROW: And then I also realized something: Mac was also the guy who did the voiceovers for the Hamm's Beer commercials, and he could likely get a free lifetime supply of beer. Hey, whaddaya know, I think I just found a new best friend!

~"Things happen.~

MIKE: Yeah, they happen all the time, in fact. We call it 'life'.

CROW: Yeah, and if it's particularly funny and we catch it on video, we can send it in to YouTube, too.

TOM: Or America's Funniest Home Videos.

CROW: Damn, you mean that show is STILL on? I thought Bob Saget died or somethin'.

TOM: Nah, they got Tom Bergeron to take his place.

~You couldn't have stopped it."~

CROW: But of course, it's not like you really TRIED to stop it or anything, Pete.

TOM (sarcastically): Yeah, good going, Pete. We send you out on shift with a perfectly good workable policeman, and look at what you've done…you've returned him all broken and icky and bloody.

MIKE: And dead. You are SO not getting to borrow anything else from the station until you can learn to be more responsible, young man!

TOM: Plus you're grounded for a month!

CROW: And that means no tv, either, mister!

~"We never should've taken that run down the alley," I sputtered.~

MIKE: And then I realized that hey, I can do a really neat imitation of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang!

CROW (cackling evilly): Of Titty Titty Gang Bang, you mean?

TOM: Yeah, ya know, instead of taking that run down the alleyway, I think we should have spent more time over on the Strip trying to get the prostitutes to spring for a freebie. Maybe that way, Parker wouldn't have gotten killed, huh?

CROW: Nah, he'd of just gotten the clap. And pubic lice.

~Coughing, I looked back down at Parke's body.~

MIKE: And I said, "Aww, he looks just like a little angel lying there, doesn't he?"

CROW: And then I said, "Hey, when's somebody gonna call the Department of Public Works to come out here and remove this grody-looking corpse? I mean, get off your dead asses here, people, and hustle hustle hustle!"

TOM (singing Van McCoy's 'The Hustle'): Do the hustle! Doot-doot-doot-doot-doot-de-de-doot-doot…

~"I should've waited for our back-up…~

MIKE: Which was the artist formerly known as Prince. (pauses) No, wait. He's gone back to being called Prince now, hasn't he?

CROW: How the hell should I know? It's not like I keep tabs on the stupid, freaky, little purple shrimp.

TOM: So THIS is what it sounds like when doves cry!

~...but we figured the guy was unarmed…~

TOM: Yeah, we didn't see the Sherman Tank he had stashed under his raincoat.

MIKE: Nor the flamethrower.

CROW: Nor the drunken monkeys with bazookas, either.

~I didn't even shoot back at him."~

MIKE: Well, I mean I WANTED to, but with only having one bullet and all, I thought I should really save it for something more important-like, such as shooting cats out of trees or firing into crowds.

TOM: Yeah, I THOUGHT about shooting back at him, does that count?

CROW: But I worried that I might hurt his feelings, so I decided not to.

~"Look, Pete, every shift is different…~

TOM: Yeah, remember the one that we spent rolling winos out on Skid Row? That was so cool! And we had all the cheap muscatel we could drink for days afterwards, too!

MIKE: Or the one where we parked the squad car in the middle of Hollywood and Vine and put the Isley Brothers' 'Shout' on over the P.A. system, and EVERYONE got out and danced in the streets? Man, that was FUN!

CROW: Or how about the one where I accidentally suffocated a prostitute to death, just 'cuz she wouldn't give me a freebie, and we ended up weighting her body down with rocks and dumping it off of the Santa Monica pier? (shakes head wistfully) Good times, man, good times…

~...you roll the dice~

CROW: And then you move the little doggie along the Monopoly board that number of spaces!

MIKE: Hey, I never got to be the doggy, all I was ever allowed to be was the shoe.

TOM: Hey, I used to eat the houses and hotels myself, so what's the big whoop?

~...and take a chance.~

MIKE: Yeah, sometimes ya just gotta throw caution to the wind, Pete, and just lay it all on the line.

CROW: And then the 9:15 to Schenectady comes roaring through and runs over it, flattening it all to hell. Then you have nothing left but a smooshed chance, which ain't too pretty to look at.

TOM: Hey, is it just me, or does it sound like she's kinda describing a high stakes card game with those two lines?

CROW (snorting derisively): And knowing the author, it's likely not Texas Hold 'Em or Five Card Stud, it's probably Go Fish or Old Maid.

~ Mac grabbed me by one arm as Moore grabbed me by the other.~

TOM: And then we all began to Riverdance!

CROW: And then I said, "Hey, do you two MIND? I'm not in the mood for a three-way right now, my partner just died! Have some respect already! Wait another five minutes, sheesh!"

MIKE (facepalming wearily): Oh brother.

CROW: Wherefore art thou.

TOM: Hey, that was a good movie. Didn't know George Clooney could sing.

CROW: Hell, didn't know George Clooney could ACT.

~"Yeah," I half-sobbed.~

CROW: Then I half-farted and half-flew out the window.

TOM: Then I looked up at the pouring sky and tore at my uniform shirt, screaming, "Why, God, why! Why did you hafta take my partner so soon? He was just getting good at the 'Guess What Body Part THIS Is Game'!"

~ "Only this time we rolled the dice and my partner is dead."~

MIKE: But let's all poke him a few more times in the eyes JUST to make sure. (mimes Val, Mac, and Pete poking Parker in the eyes, then nods) Yep, he's still good and dead.

TOM: Yeah, this time we rolled the dice and I wound up losing the ONLY man who'd make me balloon animals in the shapes of giraffes and weiner dogs…

CROW: And even one that was in the shape of a dinky.

MIKE: So long, Howie, we'll miss ye. I'll never forget the long lonely nights when you'd entertain me doing classic armpit fart songs like 'The 1812 Overture', 'Mrs. Brown You've Got A Lovely Daughter', and my favorite, 'Seasons In The Sun'.

TOM (singing Terry Jacks' 'Seasons In The Sun'): We had joy, we had fun, we had seasons in the sun, but the stars we could reach were just starfish on the beach.

CROW: Hey, I found what I thought was a dead jellyfish on the beach once.

MIKE: Was it?

CROW: Nah, it was a used condom.

TOM & MIKE (in unison): EWWWW!

MIKE: Ya know, that's kind of a lame song anyway, Tom.

TOM: Yeah, I know, but whaddaya expect? Streisand?

CROW (excitedly): Ooh, can you do 'You Don't Bring Me Flowers'? I'll be Neil Diamond!

~Somehow, they got me to my feet.~

TOM: And then we all linked arms and skipped merrily down the alleyway, singing "Ease on down, ease on down the road…"

CROW: While we left behind the rest of the police officers that were still at the scene to poke Parker in the eyes, just to make sure he stayed dead.

TOM: Yeah, ya don't want any zombie Howie Parkers running around, after all.

MIKE: Although, that might make an interesting horror movie.

CROW: Yeah, but then we'd wind up reviewing IT like we do ALL the grade-B crap that the Mads send us.

MIKE: Good point.

~...they walked me to MacDonald's …~

CROW: Where they bought me a cheeseburger Happy Meal that had an official Shrek drinking glass for the toy prize. Man, I wanted the Princess Fiona, but I got the damned cat one instead.

MIKE: Yeah, 'cuz as everyone knows, McDonald's Happy Meals go a LONG way in cheering you up when you're feeling oh-so-blue because your favorite partner just croaked. The antics of Grimace, The Hamburglar, Mayor McCheese and Ronald McDonald just make me smile.

TOM: And when we get back from MickeyD's, we're gonna flush Howie down the toilet, giving him a burial at sea, and then we're gonna go to the pet store and pick out another Howie, to replace the one that just died, YAY!

CROW: And Pete Malloy, we expect you to take CARE of this new Howie, too, and be responsible for his well-being. You hafta remember to feed him, take him for daily walks, and brush his coat regularly so that it stays nice and shiny. And ya gotta clean up after him, too. No more leaving piles of poopie around on the lawn for Mac to run over with the lawn mower.

~...station wagon…~

CROW: Which was actually not a station wagon, but the Oscar Meyer Weinermobile. (gasps) How cool would THAT be? Man, my partner gets murdered and I get to ride in a great big dinky on a bun!

MIKE: What I lost in a partner, I made up in a cool, kick-ass ride!

TOM (singing the Oscar Meyer theme): Oh I wish I were an Oscar Meyer weiner, 'cuz that is what I'd really like to be…

TOM, MIKE & CROW (in unison): Oh I wish I were an Oscar Meyer weiner, then all the world would be in love with me!

CROW: Ooh, can we do the Armour Hotdog song next? I LOVE that song!

~parked at the same alley entrance we had gone down.~

TOM: But fortunately, they didn't run over the wino speedbump like I did.

MIKE: Mostly 'cuz Adam-12 was still parked atop him.

~Men I knew…~

CROW: But generally not in THAT way, ya know what I mean? I only had eyes for my dead partner, what's-his-face…uh…Lassie or Stinky or Farty or whatever it was.

~… and worked with…~

CROW: Not only on the police department, but also as male strippers, too. In fact, we have an act. We call ourselves 'The Naughty Nightsticks'. We're on stage weekly on Thursday and Friday nights at 7, 9, and 11 p.m. Come on down and catch our act! Five dollar cover charge and ladies get in for free on Thursdays!

MIKE: And really, who says cops aren't multitalented?

~...acknowledged me with sad murmurs.~

TOM: Then they all broke into a rousing version of "Ding, Dong, Howie Parker's Dead!"

~"Sorry, Malloy, so sorry, Pete,"~

MIKE: And hey, now that Parker's dead, can I have his locker?

TOM: And his hat?

CROW: And his wife?

MIKE: And his house?

TOM: And his car?

CROW: And Paris Hilton?

~...until that alleyway seemed like a mile to Mac's car…~

MIKE: And I wondered yet again to myself why in the hell Los Angeles doesn't install those people-mover conveyer belts on the sidewalks. I mean, it would sure as hell be a lot easier to use THAT than be forced to walk, right?

TOM: Man, if Pete can't handle walking that short distance to the station wagon…

CROW (interrupting): Ahem. You mean the Oscar Meyer Weinermobile

TOM: Oh, right. If Pete can't handle walking that distance to the giant dinky on a bun, how in the hell does he expect to chase after suspects?

MIKE: That's what his younger partner is for.

TOM: Oh yeah, I always DID wonder why they hired Reed to work with him. Now I know.

CROW: Yeah, 'cuz Martin Milner's like, a hundred years older than Kent McCord is.

MIKE: He's not THAT much older than McCord, Crow. He's only about ten years older than McCord.

CROW: Is that in dog years?

~...and I wanted to scream as their words bounced off of me.~

CROW: 'Cuz all of a sudden, it had turned into a wicked game of dodgeball!

TOM: Yeah, and you chuck those words hard enough, man, they hurt like hell!

~Shock and fatigue hit me…~

TOM: Causing a hurty on my heady. "Waah!" I cried to Mac. "I hurt my widdle head! Kiss it and make it better!"

CROW: Uh…which head are you talking about?

MIKE (disgusted): CROW!

CROW (indignantly): Sah-ree! Sheesh, can't a guy have any fun when YOU'RE around?

TOM: You should know better than to ask yourself that, Crow.

~...as they settled me into the front seat of Mac's wagon.~

TOM: And then they gently tucked my blankie in around me, gave me my teddy bear and my bottle, and kissed me on my forehead. "Sweet dreams, my little prince," Mac whispered lovingly to me. Then I began to suck my thumb and slowly drift off to sleep, dreaming of fluffy little lambs and bright blue skys, and 99 Luftballoons that were all cute little balloon animals in the shapes of giraffes and weiner dogs…

TOM, MIKE & CROW (in unison): Except for the one that was in the shape of a dinky.

~ My teeth chattered…~

TOM: Just like those fake teeth that you wind up and they walk across the table!

CROW: Yeah, you can buy 'em at Spencer's Gifts. (pauses) Actually, you can buy a LOT of neat stuff at Spencer's Gifts.

MIKE: Yes, how can I ever forget you giving me a 'Fart-In-A-Can' last year for my birthday?

CROW: Hey, that was classic, man! Just wait 'til you see what I'm getting you THIS year for your birthday!

TOM (whispering to Crow): What is it? Is it something we don't want to be standing in the general vicinity of when he opens it?

CROW (whispering back): Nah, it's a book about the wisdom of George H.W. Bush.

TOM: Oh, so in other words, it's a joke book, right? (imitates rim shot) Ba-dum-bump!

~ ...and I was chilled and soaked to the very core.~

MIKE: Yeah, even my Fruit-Of-The-Looms squished.

~"Get him over to Central Receiving." ~

TOM: Wait…what, no Rampart Hospital? No sexy Nurse Dixie, no dashily handsome Dr. Brackett, no wise old Joe Early, no earnest Dr. Morton? No cute student nurse Sharon, who may be a ginormous klutz, but her heart's in the right place?

CROW (derisively): Yeah, down near her toes.

MIKE: Nah, they usually used Central Receiving. It's the fanfic writers who keep dumping them into Rampart. They actually only appeared twice at Rampart in the series run. Once in the series premiere of Emergency! and once in one of their episodes where they gave the little orange Oompa-Loompa kid a puppy.

TOM: Aw..how cute is that? You get turned into an Oompa-Loompa and you get a free dog!

CROW: I think I'd rather have Sea Monkeys. (gives Mike a dirty look) Providing SOME numbskull doesn't drink them.

MIKE (defensively): Hey, I told you it was an accident! It wasn't my fault Servo put too many red hot chili peppers in the chili that day, and I grabbed them up because I needed something to drink in order to cool my mouth down. Besides, YOU'RE the idiot who left 'em on the table to begin with! I told you before, sea monkeys don't belong on the table! They're just like shoes and your Kim Cattrall fan mags, they belong in your bedroom!

~Moore gestured to his own car. ~

CROW: I'mma gonna take this baby in and get it super-customized, man! I'mma gonna get me some 20-inch spinner rims, some blue neon ground effects, glass packs, a carburetor scoop on the hood, a 50-disc cd changer, put some awesome Alpine woofers, sub-woofers, tweeters, and amps in the trunk, and I'mma gonna paint it neon purple to boot! With silver streaks of flame on the sides!

MIKE: Well, that's gotta be the only LAPD cruiser that could pass for a pimp-mobile.

CROW: Yo' homie, don't be dissin' my sweet, tricked-out ride now, or I'mma gonna put a cap in your ass!

~"Homicide's here…~

TOM: Along with the cast from 'C.S.I.: Las Vegas'.

CROW: Um…with, or without Gil Grissom?

TOM: Oh, with, of course. What, do you think I'm crazy or something? Gil MADE that show, man!

MIKE: And then he hooked up with that stupid Sara Sidle and RUINED it all. I was actually hoping he'd snag Lady Heather, to be honest. She was all kinky-like with her dominatrix prostitution house, while all that stupid Sara could do was whine and look constipated all the time.

CROW: Nah, I was hoping he'd hook up with Jim Brass. They both had that sexy old-guy thing going on, ya know?

MIKE (shaking his head): Man, I keep sayin' you're pervy, Crow.

CROW: And who's to blame for that? You're the one who made me, bucko.

MIKE: No, I keep telling you, Joel made you, but I'm beginning to seriously consider turning you into an espresso machine.

CROW (pouting): Hmph. See if I give you Ronco's 'Super-Fart-In-A-Can' this year for Christmas.

MIKE: Yeah, really, I wish you wouldn't.

TOM (happily): Ooh, ooh, I'll take it if he doesn't want it!

~...they'll take over…~

MIKE: Yeah, 'cuz that's like, their jobs?

~...so I'll follow you in.~

CROW: You big sexy thang, you!

TOM: Hey, what say you drive your car really, really fast, and I'll follow along behind you with my lights and siren going, pretending to chase you, and maybe we'll get on World's Wildest Police Videos!

MIKE: Hey, if Mac's driving the big ol' Oscar Meyer dinky-on-a-bun, that puppy is only gonna go 20, 25 mph, tops.

TOM: So I guess we would have no need for the stop-sticks, right? Or to shoot out the windshield…er…I mean TIRES?

MIKE: No.

TOM: Damn, and I was SO looking forward to hanging my head out of the passenger side window and make sirens noises with my mouth!

~MacDonald hurried around to the driver's side.~

TOM: Doing high kicks all the way!

CROW: And singing "I have a sad story to tell you, it may hurt your feelings a bit. Just now when I walked to my squad car, I stepped in a big pile of shh…"

MIKE, CROW, & TOM (singing Benny Bell's 'Shaving Cream' in unison): "…Aaaving cream, be nice clean, shave every day and you'll always feel keen!"

~ "Got it."~

MIKE: Well, no, I don't got it.

CROW: Yeah, I had it, but I lost it, damn it.

TOM (singing Shocking Blue's 'Venus'): She's got it…yeah baby, she's got it. I'm your penis, I'm your fire, what's your desire?

CROW (in irritation): HEY! How come HE gets to use the word 'penis' and not get yelled at by you, but when I even mention a balloon animal shaped like a dinky, you go ballistic on me?

MIKE: Because he slipped it in there without me catching it.

TOM: That's what she said. (pauses, then imitates rim shot) Ba-dum-bump! (mock-bows to invisible audience) Thank you, thank you, ladies and gentlemen! I'm appearing all this week at the Laugh Factory for two showings nightly at 7 and 11 p.m., so be sure and catch my act there!

MIKE: Yeah, I'm afraid that if I caught it, it might be kinda deadly, too, so I think I'll pass.

CROW: Yeah, you're likely to infect everyone with some of that rockin' pneumonia and the boogie woogie flu. And they haven't really come up yet with a good innoculation to prevent H1N1, so an outbreak of the rockin' pnuemonia and the boogie woogie flu would probably be pretty deadly.

MIKE: Yeah, there'd be spontaneous line-dancing in the streets.

CROW: And everyone would be doing the Electric Boogaloo.

MIKE: Plus the Shag.

CROW: And the Frug.

MIKE: And the Twist.

CROW: And the Monkey.

MIKE: And the Mashed Potato.

CROW: And the…

TOM (with dismay): Alright already, stop with the dances! It stopped being funny three dances ago!

~He glanced over at me…~

CROW: Coyly batting his lashes at me as he placed a sweaty palm upon my thigh. "Pete," he whispered in a hoarse, sexy growl. "I've waited so long to get you into my Oscar Meyer Penis On A Bun. Now strip off that adorable blue dacron uniform and let me gaze lustfully upon your butt-nekkid body, and then I shall smother you all over with relish, onions, mustard and ketchup, and have my way with you like I've dreamed of doing for so long!"

TOM (dismayed again): Okay, HE used the word 'penis', too. Aren't you gonna say something, Mike?

MIKE (facepalming wearily): Ya know what? I don't care anymore. Use it, if you want.

CROW: Really? We can use the word 'penis'?

MIKE (shrugging): Sure, why not? It's not like it's a super smutty word, after all. It's just the scientific term for male genitilia.

CROW (with curiosity): Um…care to give us some examples of super-smutty words? Just for…uh…reference purposes?

MIKE (decisively): No, I do not. Because the last time I did, the both of you spent an entire WEEK using those words in every single sentence that you possibly could. And I ended up doing memory wipes on BOTH of you, just to get you sort of back to normal.

CROW (contemplatively): But we can say the word 'penis', right?

MIKE (sighing heavily): Lemme guess, you're gonna say it 150 times in a row now, aren't you?

CROW: Yeah, pretty much. Penis, penis, penis, penis, penis, penis…

TOM: Dinky, dinky, dinky, dinky, dinky, dinky…

CROW: Penis…

TOM: Dinky…

CROW: Dinky penis. (pauses) Ooh, we just described Mike!

MIKE (with irritation): Ya know, I'm beginning to wonder why Joel ever built you two in the first freakin' place. The two of you are more annoying than crotch itch. Can we get back to the story now, providing the two of you have gotten all the 'dinky' and 'penis' words out of your systems?

CROW (pouting): I don't know if I wanna, if I can't keep saying dinky and penis.

TOM (also pouting): Me neither.

MIKE (sighing again): Okay, look, the sooner we get done with this, the sooner we can get back to…well, whatever the hell it is that we do in our spare time.

CROW: Ooh, I like to fantasize about Pamela Anderson and her ginormous airbags!

TOM: And I like to dream I'm a popcorn popper!

MIKE: I usually just pray for death.

CROW: Yours?

MIKE: Nah, your's and Tom's, but mine'll do in a pinch.

CROW (haughtily): Oh, I SO do not like you right now, Nelson!

TOM (also haughtily): Me, too.

CROW: Ooh, me three!

TOM: Ooh, me four!

CROW: Me five!

TOM: Me six!

CROW: Me seven!

MIKE: GUYS! Knock it the hell off! We're not doing the counting game from 'Sesame Street'!

TOM: But you didn't let us get to 'me eight'!

CROW (going for the line anyway): You ate what?

TOM: Me ate tacos! Now me gassy! Me need plop-plop-fizz-fizz!

MIKE: Me need a gas mask. And here earlier you were bitching about always getting blamed for the farts and then what do you do? Go and fart.

CROW: But he obviously hasn't flown out the window. (pauses, gives Servo a curious look) Yet. Although the night is still young.

~…as he flicked on the lights and siren to his car.

TOM: And we promptly turned the city streets into our own personal disco! Yay! The city of Los Angeles is now Studio 54!

CROW (singing the Bee Gees' 'Stayin' Alive'): Aye-aye-aye-aye, stayin' alive, stayin' alive…aye-aye-aye-aye, stayin' (pauses for breath) iiyiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii (pauses for breath again) ahhyiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii…

MIKE: Crow, enough!

CROW: Wait, I'm not done yet! Iiiiiiiiivvvveee…(pauses) Now I am.

~He didn't say a word…~

CROW: He just kept fondling my thigh and giving me delicious little naughty looks with those lovely bedroom eyes of his.

TOM: And then he farted and flew out the window!

~… as we left that horrific scene…~

MIKE: It was HORRIFIC, I tell ya, just HORRIFIC!

TOM: But kinda neato in an icky sort of way, what with the dead guy I loved poking in the eyes, the blood that blossomed viciously on his coat, the dead wino, the rain dripping down...

~… a dead officer, a dead suspect…~

MIKE: Plus twelve drummers drumming, eleven pipers piping, ten lords a-leaping…

TOM: Nine ladies dancing, eight maids a-milking…

CROW: Seven swans a-swimming, six geese a-laying…

MIKE, TOM & CROW (singing in unison): Fiii-ve gol-den rings!

CROW: Four calling birds…

TOM: Three French hens…

MIKE: Two turtledoves…

MIKE, TOM & CROW (in unison): And a parr-trr-ridge in a pear tree!

TOM: And it's Mama Partridge, too, Miss Shirley Jones!

CROW (lasciviously): Mmm…the things I'd like to do to HER after I get her OUT of the pear tree!

MIKE (snorting derisively): Knowing you, if she's smart, she'd STAY in the pear tree and fly up to the highest branch, well out of your reach.

CROW: Hey, I'm part crow, so I can fly, damn it!

MIKE: Actually, you're part Hoover vaccum cleaner, so while you can't fly, you sure can suck.

TOM (imitating rim shot): Ba-dum-bump!

~… in the wake of it all.~

TOM: Awake? Who's still awake after reading this boring piece?

MIKE: No, wake, wake…

TOM: But I wasn't asleep!

MIKE (facepalming wearily again): No, she means 'wake', like what a boat leaves behind it as it travels in the water? Or in the face of a terrible tragedy, like this has been?

CROW: Yeah, and this story HAS been a terrible tragedy, too. I predict that the audience that reads this will all die of boredom.

TOM (with obvious dismay): You mean this whole story has been about a BOAT? Why in the hell didn't she SAY so?

MIKE (closing eyes and shaking head): No, no, it's not about a boat, it's about…(pauses, then nods)…nah, ya know what? Yeah, it's about a boat, Tom. Sure, we'll go with that. I mean, why in the hell not? It's not like much ELSE of this piece has made sense.

TOM: Okay, then it must be about the Titanic, 'cuz it hit a big iceberg awhile back around the 'mystery envelope' introduction and it's been sinking ever since.

CROW: Nah, it's about the Love Boat. I wanna be Gopher! He actually went on to become a United States Senator for the state of Nebraska, and how neat is THAT? He went from ship's purser to shill artist and con man for big government, just like that Harold Hill!

MIKE: No, he was a U.S. Senator for the state of Iowa, not Nebraska.

CROW: Eh…toe-may-toe, to-mah-toh, it's the same thing, ain't it? I mean, they both grow corn, right?

MIKE: Yeah, they both grow corn, but they're completely different states, Crow.

TOM (in confusion): Wait, I thought Iowa grew potatoes.

MIKE: No, that's Idaho.

TOM: I thought Idaho is where the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is at.

MIKE: No, that's Indiana.

TOM: God, what was WITH that country and all the 'I'-named states? Couldn't they have gone with a lesser-used letter for one or two? Like Queslyvania or Arizona or something?

MIKE: There IS a state named Arizona.

CROW: Wait, you mean they named a sTate after that Mark Lindsay song?

MIKE: What? No…

TOM: Yeah, and why hasn't anyone sang about the loveliness of New Jersey? Or Rhode Island? Or Massachusetts?

MIKE: Hey, the Bee Gees DID sing about Massachusetts, and how the lights went out there one night.

CROW: Yeah, and it was the night that they hung an innocent man.

MIKE (sighing): Wrong song, Crow. You're thinking of 'The Night The Lights Went Out In Georgia', by Vicki Lawrence.

CROW: Ooh, that chick that played Mama on Mama's Family? Ooh, she was sexy in that granny outfit!

MIKE (to himself): Ya know, I don't know why I even bother sometimes…

TOM: Yeah, believe me, so do we.

~I shivered and shook in the seat next to him, silent. ~

TOM: And then I farted and flew out the window!

MIKE: And then I proceeded to say "Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?" over and over and over again, until he finally got tired of it and whacked me up alongside the head with his nightstick, knocking me out.

CROW: And what a BIG nightstick it was too! I was set all aflame and a-twitter by his smoky seductive looks and his hot meaty hand on my thigh. I couldn't WAIT until we got to Central Receiving so I could get him into an exam room and have my way with him. (sighs dreamily) My big, strong, sexily handsome Mac!

~ I couldn't admit to him, or myself that…~

CROW: That I had secretly been fantasizing about him ALL day long, and I was SO EXCITED that we were FINALLY gonna be doing this! (gives a girly squeal of excitement) Just WAIT until I get my hot little hands on you, Mr. Mac! You'll think you've died and gone to Heaven!

~… we had made rookie-assed, stupid mistakes in the way Parker and I handled the whole incident.~

MIKE: Yeah, in retrospect, I probably really shouldn't have run over that wino. That's definitely gonna go in my package.

CROW: And we probably shouldn't have engaged in that three-way with the suspect, either. I don't think that was too kosher.

TOM: And I probably shouldn't have shot my last bullet at the pair of tennis shoes on the telephone wire. I shoulda saved it for this. I might not have hit the guy, but I probably woulda winged him pretty good.

MIKE: No, if Pete shot him, he'd of nailed him dead. He was a Distinguished Expert as far as sharpshooting goes, ya know. That's what that circular medallion is that he wears on his uniform, it's a badge designating the highest sharpshooting rank attainable in the department.

CROW (slightly amazed): Really? I always thought it was because he sold the most Girl Scout cookies.

~We train for such things…~

MIKE: Well, not really for running over the wino. That was more of a spur-of-the-moment type thing that we learned about pretty much right after I hit him.

TOM: And next up for us to learn is how to clean wino gunk off of the underside of Adam-12!

~…and both of us were seasoned officers.~

MIKE: Yes, I was spicy paprika, while what's-his-face was A-1 Steak Sauce!

TOM: Nah, Pete strikes me more as a cinnamony-seasoned type guy.

CROW: Hmm, I was thinking Pete was maybe more of some saffron or some meat tenderizer. (thinks a moment) Or maybe some parsely, sage, rosemary and thyme.

TOM: Ooh, good way to get an old Simon & Garfunkel song in there!

~But all the training, all of the manuals…~

MIKE: And all the running over of the winos…

CROW: And the selling of Girl Scout Thin Mints…

TOM: And the farting and the flying out of the window…

~… never prepares someone for seeing their partner die.~

MIKE: Well actually, given the fact that what's-his-face is my eighth partner in five years that's been killed off so tragically during one of our shifts, I'd say I'm pretty well used to it by now.

CROW: Yeah, my first partner got electrocuted when I dared him to lick an electric fence, my second one drowned when I dared him to try and swim across the Pacific Ocean, the third one suffocated when I dared him to spend the entire shift locked in the trunk of our car…

TOM: The fourth one got eaten by Godzilla when I dared him to poke Godzilla in the foot with his nightstick, the fifth one shot himself when I dared him to look down the barrel of his gun and pull the trigger, the sixth one died when I dared him to act as a crash test dummy in the middle of the street and then I hit him while doing 55…

CROW: And the seventh and eighth ones died of sudden heart attacks when they learned they were going to be my partner.

~ No one tells you that you're going to leave a piece of your heart, your innocence behind in a dirty little alleyway on a routine shift.~

CROW: Yeah, they're also not gonna tell you your gonna leave your really cool ALF pog back there, either. Or your favorite Pokèmon card. (sobs dramatically) Oh Pikachu, I miss you so much!

TOM: Or your neato Power Rangers umbrella and matching raincoat.

CROW: Or your wad of BubbleYum in grape flavor that you stuck on what's-his-face's corpse 'cuz you were tired of chewing it.

~And still the rain poured down.~

MIKE: And then frogs started falling from the sky. And then hordes of locusts rained down. And then a flock of stupid smarmy British Petroleum executives showed up who don't know their asses from a leaking oil well in the ocean.

CROW: Ooh, a veritable Biblical plague-fest, nifty!

TOM: Yeah, sounds fun, can I join in?

MIKE (shrugging): Yeah, sure. It's the end of the story, after all.

TOM (exchanging a startled look with Crow): Wait, you mean to tell me THAT'S IT? That's ALL she wrote?

CROW: Yeah, you mean she ended it with THAT line?

MIKE: Yeah, I think she wanted the reader to realize the starkness and the sadness of the scene. You know, like even though there had been this horrible tragedy for Pete, the rain still continued to fall, just like nothing had ever happened.

CROW: Whoa, that's kind of…(pauses, thinking hard, then his voice turns hushed)…deep, man.

TOM (looking awed): Yeah, I think I might cry. (sniffles a bit) Man, that one reviewer did NOT know what in the hell she was talking about.

CROW (sadly): Yeah, she sure as hell didn't. I mean we don't WANT to know what Reed's reaction was to Pete's telling of the story. The story wasn't about what Jim thought of Pete's story, it was about Pete's memory of that night, and how he finally let it go by telling his partner what really happened.

MIKE: Yeah, well, that reviewer is always nitpicking out minor errors in the storylines, like mistakes in grammar, spelling, and puncutation, so I think she largely misses the main point of the story when she's focused only on catching the boo-boos, like she's the grammar police or something.

CROW (contemplatively): Eh…maybe she can't really grasp the deeper concepts of the stories, so she focuses on what she CAN grasp, the mistakes in spelling and punctuation.

MIKE (shrugging): Could be. (sighs, looking at watch) Well, we'll need to notify Sergeant Friday that we're done and we've reviewed the story for him, unleashing as much snarkicism snidety that we could muster.

TOM: Yeah, plus a little bit of gas, too.

CROW (giving Servo disgusted look): Servo, that's just gross, man.

MIKE (leaning forward and pushing button to turn on viewscreen, clears throat when it comes on, preparing to address Sgt. Friday): Um…Sergeant Friday, are you out there? We're done reviewing the story for you, sir.

(The viewscreen slowly fuzzes into focus, showing Sergeant Joe Friday and his faithful sidekick, Officer Bill Gannon standing there, both of them looking a mite displeased and somewhat discombobulated at this moment.)

SERGEANT FRIDAY (sounding irritated): Yes? What is it?

(There is no answer from the crew, as Mike, Crow, and Tom stare with wide-eyed shock at the two men on the viewscreen before them, their jaws hanging open in astonishment. Sergeant Friday is wearing thigh-high black patent leather boots with five-inch stiletto heels, a silver metal-studded leather bustier, long black satin opera gloves, black lacy women's panties with the saying 'Eat Me' stitched across the front in white thread, black fishnet stockings, and he's carrying a leather cat o'nine tails in one hand, while he holds a black leather dog leash in the other. The dog leash is attached to a black leather silver-studded dog collar that is around Bill Gannon's neck, while Gannon is completely naked, save for a pair of black leather cowboy chaps. It's quite clear that the Satellite Of Love crew has OBVIOUSLY interrupted something VERY important, and fairly kinky, too.)

TOM (whispering to Crow in amazement): Holy effin' crap, how in the hell did you DO that, man? They're dressed JUST LIKE you described earlier!

CROW (shivering a bit in fear): Man, I don't know, but I'm kinda scared, frankly! I mean, if I can imagine something like THIS and it comes true, what else will come true if only I picture it in my mind?

TOM: Hey, picture naked Pamela Anderson in your mind, see if that comes true!

CROW: I…I can't! All I can picture is THIS!

MIKE (recovering first from his shock): Um…well…yes…ah…we got the…uh…story done, sir.

SERGEANT FRIDAY (frowning slightly, clearly unaware that the S.O.L. crew can see him and Gannon in their kinky outfits): All the way through?

MIKE: Um…yes, Sergeant. We riffed on it all the way through.

SERGEANT FRIDAY (nodding crisply): Very well, then. Send me your critique and I'll look it over. Then I'll post it up on the Fanfiction site for everyone to read and then they'll SEE just how stupid that Bamboozlepig's stories can be, when picked apart, bit by bit by bit! (throws head back and cackles evilly, alá Vincent Price in Michael Jackson's 'Thriller')

TOM (whispering to Crow and Mike): Man, I'm SO kinda freaked right now!

CROW (whispering back with wide eyes): You're tellin' me! I'M the one who imagined this, remember?

MIKE (also whispering): Yeah, and this is something that's gonna be really hard to forget, too! It's like seeing your grandmother naked in the bathtub or something.

CROW (turning to Mike with disgust): You perv, you mean you used to spy on your grandmother while she was bathing? That's sick, man!

MIKE: No, it's just a metaphor, you idiot! (gesturing to Sergeant Friday and Bill Gannon, chuckling nervously all the while) Well…heh heh…we can see that the two of you are…um…pretty busy…heh heh…so we'll let you get back to whatever it is that you were…ah…doing…heh heh.

SERGEANT FRIDAY (nodding briskly once more): Yes, that's fine. If I wish to have you guys critique any more of her work, I'll be in touch. (without realizing he needs to turn off the viewscreen in order to end the transmission to the S.O.L. crew, he tugs on Gannon's leash) C'mon, Bill. Let's go get you spanked, since you've been a VERY BAD DOGGIE! You drank my Ronco Sea Monkeys!

BILL GANNON (sitting up like a dog and panting slightly): Arf arf! (gives Joe a pleading puppy dog look and whimpers, then the viewscreen goes black as Mike terminates the transmission from his end)

MIKE (shuddering): Man…that was something I never wanna see again…EVER! At least not in THIS lifetime!

CROW (also shuddering): Yeah, I think I need to go wash my eyes and my brain out with battery acid right now.

TOM (contemplatively): I dunno…I kinda liked it. It shows a more feminine side of Sergeant Friday and Bill Gannon.

CROW: Okay, NOW who's being pervy? I mean, for God's sake, first Mike admits to spying on his elderly grandmother while she bathes…

MIKE (heatedly): I DO NOT! It was just a metaphor, damn it!

CROW (continuing): And then YOU decide you LIKE Sergeant Friday and Bill Gannon in the roles of dom and submissive, Servo!

TOM (defensively): Hey, YOU were the one that first got started on the whole Friday as a dom thing in the beginning, Crow!

CROW: Yeah, but only because Mike was the one who planted it in my mind! So really, Mike's the perv, not me!

MIKE: But I was just using that as an example! I didn't think you'd actually GO somewhere with it, Crow!

CROW: Yeah, but you know me…give me an idea and I run with it!

TOM: Okay, so next time, could you PLEASE imagine something OTHER than a dommie Sergeant Friday? Maybe like Pamela Anderson frolicking naked in a field?

MIKE: Or maybe some cute little puppies playing tug-of-war with a sock?

TOM: Or howsabout a naked Pamela Anderson playing sock tug-of-war with the cute little puppies?

CROW: Oh, why don't you go fart and fly out the window, you stupid airheaded bubblegum machine!

TOM: Hey, I'm not the one who's made from parts of a canister vac and a Slurpee machine!

(And the scene fades out, as Mike, Tom Servo, and Crow T. Robot continue to argue over who's the perviest and who's made out of scavenged Eureka parts, plus Tom and Mike offer suggestions to Crow as to what he should imagin the NEXT time Sergeant Friday asks them for help in reviewing one of Bamboozlepig's stories. 'Cuz really, they could do without the…ah…yeah…that WHOLE dominatrix thing. It's just WAY too icky.)

***** THE PRECEDING STORY WAS BROUGHT TO YOU BY DONATIONS FROM THESE GENEROUS CORPORATE SPONSORS:

Merriam-Webster's Dictionaries …"Trying To Figure Out How To Spell 'Relief'? Look In Here And You'll Find It Ain't Spelled R-o-l-a-i-d-s OR F-a-r-t! 'Cuz We're A DICTIONARY, Not Pop Culture!"

Roget's Thesaurus …"Look At All The Pretty Wordies In Our Book! You'll Be Amazed At How Many Different Ways There Are To Describe The Word 'Language'!"

British Petroleum …"Being Enviornmentally Irresponsible Since 2010!"

And Ronco Teleproducts, the makers of fine, fantastic products such as the Ronco Pocket Fisherman (Go Fishing Wherever You Are, Even In The Bathroom!); the Ronco Mr. Microphone (Hey, We Were Karaoke LONG Before It Ever Became Popular!); the Ronco Chia Pet Collection (Grow Your Very Own Official Chia Pet Herb Garden On Top Of Vice-President Joe Biden's Head! Really! 'Cuz He Kinda Needs A Little More Hair, We Think!); and the Ronco Sea Monkey Collection (Seriously…Please Do NOT Drink Them, Those Cute Little Sea Monkeys Are Somebody's FAMILY MEMBERS, You Jerks! But Hey, If Somebody DOES Drink Them You Can Always Order More, Right? Right!)

(Scene reopens for just a brief moment, showing Bamboozlepig sitting at her computer, laughing hysterically. "Nice try, Sergeant Friday," she says, sticking her tongue out at her monitor. "But you can't keep me from writing!" She then throws her head back, cackling maniacally, as the scene fades out once more.)