Story Go Round 02/08/2002, round 2, #1

Brought to you by the phrase 'tube socks'

He marked another tube sock on the side of his P-87 Phantom Spitfire, mopping his brow and winking at his buddies, "Better trophy than the Little League Cham-peen-ship, you know it!" They laughed. That impressed them. He'd been someone before, and still was. Returning to his hometown after the divorce had been a good idea. Now there a year, Hank had re-connected with his childhood. He had skateboarded down Main St, gotten candy from Hugo's StopNShopAwhile and dug up all the old toys he had buries over the years in the schoolyard. His buddies had been there with him every time, laughing with him, crying with him, meditating with him. Now, as a fighter pilot, he was out protecting the country from tube socks. The onset had been sudden. It had begun as a dot on a NASA display near Orion. Everyone had discounted it as scientific paranoia -- somebody wanting a grant -- until the gym refuse had breached the solar system. Past Neptune, the tube socks had emerged as the largest celestial object visible to the naked eye, dwarfing even the M31 globular cluster. Children in China looked up at the sky and said things that we can't repeat here because they were in Mandarin. Children in Canada ignored the whole thing as a Pepsi advertising ploy, which they boycotted to Pepsi's dismay. They passed in front of the sun and caused a total eclipse. The entire corps was called out to fend off the the socks, igniting rioting and looting from the hoards of housewives below, until tube socks were included on the state dole. Even that didn't contain the mass movement, and now the corps has been called out to fight the housewives. Hank drew his first one on his Stuka this afternoon.

Amber is purple; John is pink; Alan is blue; Terry is orange; Habeeb is green