“I am the Hunter S. Thompson of Data Entry,” By Chris Partridge

Jan 9th, 2013 | By | Category: Fake Nonfiction, Prose

The assignment was a simple one: consolidate the email subscriber lists into a single spreadsheet.  Or at least it seemed simple.  Three tabs of blotter acid and a fifth of Jack later, and it became clear that the swarming birds would never allow it.  They were all over the keyboard, shitting and clack-clack-clacking away on the IBM Selectric typewriter I’d brought from home.  Liz said to use Excel, but a laptop is the establishment’s computer—the machine’s machine.  You gotta feel the ink on your fingers, suck down the fumes if you wanna stay free and connected to your craft.

Those fucking crows were getting greater in number—and bolder—by the minute.  On top of that I was alone.  Terry, my intrepid desk-mate at Camden Office Solutions, couldn’t see the bastards even as they pecked away at his ears and face.  Shoo!  Get outta here you goddam birds!  Don’t you know Terry’s been through enough with his divorce!

Maintain, Chris!   Where are those yellow-jackets when you need ‘em?  Damn, gone!  A man needs a balanced diet, especially when it comes to consumption of illicit narcotics and the computerization of records.  Down the K-hole then!  Look out below!

What the hell were we doing?  That’s right, the email subscribers list.  Liz had come in with the assignment that morning.  She just handed it down and got the hell out of here.  The cubicles were the shit, and she couldn’t stand it down in the muck with all the long-hairs and weird-o’s, the freaks and outcasts.  Liz was a Goldwater woman all the way, without an ounce patience for a tweaker from the temp agency.  You could see it in those black eyes of hers.  Black like the crows.  Did he think they were in league together, I asked Terry—Liz and the birds?  Look at the talons!  That’s how you can tell their kind from ours.

The horse meds kick in and the birds fly south for the winter.  Sayonara, sonsabitches!  You can’t stop me like you did with that quarterly sales Powerpoint.  Snap sna-snap-snap-BING on the IBM.  Now we’re cooking with gas!  Worked right through lunch, but who needs nourishment besides the truth.  And this email spreadsheet is the god’s truth!  Rick Macklenburg (Rmacklen@hotmail.com): 255 Maple Street?  You’re goddam right that’s where old Ricky is, fighting the good fight.

More cigarettes, Terry!  Let’s light this rocket!  Six pages down and we were coming into the home stretch.  Another handful of ‘ludes would put me over the top.  Down the hatch with a swig of Jack, as they say.  Damn the collating, man!  Don’t you see we’re onto something here!  A fresh ribbon for the Selectric and a fresh rail for its master.

Liz comes back for an update and threatens to can me.  “Do it right,” she says.  But you don’t hire Chris Partridge to do the data entry a goddam robot could do.  You hire Chris Partridge when you want to turn the data on its fucking head and spin it around and around till it pukes out the unvarnished, uncomfortable reality of it all.

Holy hell!  Get back, you wing-ed bastards!  You’re not getting Rick Macklenburg’s address out of me!  I’ll take it to the grave.


Defenestration-Dapper GentlemanChris Partridge is a satirical news writer and mercenary philosopher from Seattle, Washington. He lived with his parents in Ohio until he was 23. Yes, he lived in Ohio. That’s not braggy, some people are just lucky. He writes conceptual humor, flash fiction, and other pretentiously-named genres. For more of Chris’ work, visit www.thenewsalchemist.com or follow him on Twitter @Narc_Twain.

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