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A man had a talking wristwatch. It's true. Unfortunately, this man was a very poor conversationalist and he rarely spoke to the poor watch. In time, the watch became estranged from its owner.

But one day there was an attack on Earth. A roller coaster of aliens, with two to each seat, and with the over-the-shoulder restraints, came writhing through the atmosphere and started blasting away at all the people. The man with the wristwatch was there. He panicked. Sprinted through the streets looking for an obscure hiding place where he could never be found.

The wristwatch screamed as well, "Get us out of here! Over in to the cathedral there!"

In the hysteria, the man found himself naturally speaking with the watch, uninhibited. "I'm going to take care of you!" he yelled.

The cathedral happened to be the alien homebase, though. When the man came in close proximity, his bones were ripped out of his body by a huge bone magnet the aliens had. Tragic, I know. The watch wailed horribly, but it used vibrate mode, so the sound didn't attract the attention of the assailants.

To swiftly close, let me add that the humans ended up winning the battle, saved by some quick thinking on the behalf of a bunch of inner city skateboarders. The rescue team secured the watch, who was immediately informed that he was not the only watch of his kind, that there were in fact millions of talking wristwatches. But he had a rough recovery, was left with a pretty bad tick, and it turned out that the other watches were a pretty ruthless group, so they referred to him by a derogatory term which isn't a vulgarity for humans. Still, out of respect for these devices, I'll curb my sharing of it with you.

by why the lucky stiff

july 21, 2004