Random Shots: Goodbye Old World Order

Against the Current, No. 37, March/April 1992

R.F. Kampfer

“THE OFFICIAL CHANGE of name from ‘Union of Soviet Socialist Republies’ to Commonwealth of Freedom loving People’ (or ‘Free Commonwealth’ for short) … was decreed by the Marshall of Peace in the early nineteen fifties?”—Arthur Koestler, The Age of Longing (1950)

Deja Vu All Oveer Again

“President Nixon threw up on the steps of the Kremlin today. He was heard to mutter something about borscht, and was suddenly on his knees. Before his bodyguards couldassist him, several peasants of undetermined origin stuck small protest signs on the President with scotch tape.”—Revolting, by Con- gress of Wonders (1972)

After Bush threatened to do it again, Toho Studios agreed to purchase ten thousand American cars for their next movie.

Real Bumper Sticker. Saddam Hussein Still Has A Job. Do You?

Heros of Their Times

THE POST OFFICE is soliciting designs for its upcoming Elvis Presley commemorative. It is rumored to be the first U.S. postage stamp to be printed on black velvet. Meanwhile, one of the smaller Caribbean nations has come out with a Madonna stamp. Mint covers are expected to be rare collectibles, since few philatelists will be able to refrain from licking it.

Susan B. Anthony would probably be highly irritated to learn that one of the few places her commemorative coin is still used is in the Times Square porno arcades.

Teen Age Blues

THE LARGEST group of homeless people must be teenagers. At least, none of Sasha’s friends seem to have homes of their own to go to.

SOME ANIMAL rights activists have raised objections to the term “pet,” preferring “companion animal.” In the case of cats, “boss” would be more appropriate.

“Bride of Re-Animator,” though far inferior to the Cronenburg original, does show us a sweatshirt printed from “Miskatonic University, Arkham Mass.” that any H.P. Lovecraft fan would give a finger for.

Have any of us not thought, at some point in our childhoods, that if we could somehow dispose of a sibling, there would be twice as much ice cream?

Kampter Out to Lunch

THE PLOT OF Cronenberg’s “Naked Lunch,” the film based on William Burroughs’ novel, resembles the paranoid fantasies that might be experienced by a strung-out junky while waiting all night for his connection on the beach in Tangler. Highly recommended.

If Cronenberg had stuck closer to the novel, Sean Penn would have been perfect in the part of Steely Dan III. Speaking of the novel—a French review of the book began: “Burroughs is primarily known as the author of the Tarzan novels.”

The centipede sex scene, however distasteful, makes a good allegory for the exploitation of the Third World by decadent European imperialism.

The “William Tell thing” needs to be discussed, but the most obvious interpretation is that Burroughs isn’t even capable of taking responsibility for anyone else in his fantasies, much less in real life.

Anyone who can provide a translation of the phrase that such an interesting effect upon the Arabic typewriter in “Naked Lunch” will receive a custom-made Random Shot on a subject of their choice.

March-April 1992, ATC 37