Thursday, February 17, 2011


As I was listening to the radio on the T's Orange Line this morning, I heard a very disturbing jingle:

"Sears is where America used to shop
for the life we used to lead!
Sears is where America used to shop
for the things we used to need!"

And then a high-pitched announcer interrupted with a startling announcement:

"All Sears stores in the USA and Canada are going out of business! It's the biggest sale in our over 100 year history! Everything's on sale at 25 to 50%, with 80% off selected items and many specials! Quanitites are limited and all sales are final! Visit for more details. It's business as usual at all K-Mart stores! And yes, K-Mart will be open Christmas Day for your last minute shopping convenience."

Just great! I switched the station just as I got off at Community College and turned on to WODS-FM's Christmas marathon. Just as Mariah Carey's "O Holy Night" began playing, a loud sound started to shout:


For 5 minutes, the monotone was shouting the MBTA's name. I slipped off my earphones and pulled it out of the socket. By now, the voice yelling "MBTA" was shouting at the top of his lungs. Suddenly, I heard a beeping sound and the voice saying, "This radio will self destruct in 5 seconds!"

5 Seconds?! Luckily, there was a trashcan nearby, so I threw it in and skidaddled the other way. As I turned the corner onto a side street, the radio exploded, blowing the trashcan into smithereens.

I was shocked! Was that radio a bomb? I dared not think about what happened-or what might have. I continued into the office with a stunned look in my face.

"Good morning, Richard," the receptionist said. "What's wrong?"

"That radio I was listening to started yelling "MBTA, MBTA" over and over for 10 minutes. Then I heard an announcement saying that the radio would self destruct in five seconds."

"You're kidding!"

"I threw it into a trash can and took off. It blew up just as I turned the corner."

"I'm glad you weren't hurt."

I picked up a bunch of Wall Street Journals and started distributing them to the partners. But when I came into Charlie McDougall's office, he shouted, "You owe me $12,000!"

"What are you talking about?"

"That radio you threw into the trash can blew up my car!"

"I didn't know. I'm sorry!"

"Officer, read him his rights and get rid of him! I don't ever want to see him again!"

Behind me there was a cop who came over to me. But as he gave the Miranda speech, he arrested Charlie inatead.

"Not me, you dummy! Him!"

"He's the one you sold that bomb to, Mr. McDougall!"

As the cop dragged Charlie out the door, I almost collapsed. Charlie was trying to kill me or frame me for a crime.

"Okay, Mac! Get in the car!"

"You set me up, Richard! I'll fucking kill you!"

As the car sped away, I snarled, "Write me if you get work in jail, Charlie."

I went back in and said to the receptionist, "I can't believe it! Was Charlie trying to kill me or frame me for a crime?"

"I don't know, Richard."

I went into the men's room and cried for about an hour before I got control of myself. Now wouldn't that have been a shock?

Meanwhile, on another part of town, someone working for the Post Office heard the same thing and threw the radio out the window. But it was onto a speeding car that it landed, blowing up the car and the occupants inside of it. No great loss, though. It was a bunch of gangsters who'd just robbed the Bank of America branch in Government Center.

To be continued....

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