Another Editorial

by Hani Sallum

Hello again, old readers, and welcome new ones. This is my second issue of Voo Doo Magazine since I took on the role of Copy Editor, and I feel I should share with you some of the experiences I've had so far in my short time in this position.

There have been many times in the past when I have contributed to Voo Doo, but it wasn't until I became Copy Editor that people began associating me with humor. The one instance that sticks so firmly in my mind occured one day last spring inside the beautiful Kendall Square Au Bon Pain.

Before I go off into this anecdote, I must talk about the effect my position has had on me. Much as I hate to admit it I've become more critical about humor, and sometimes do not appreciate a pun for what it is worth. This is what I discovered the hard way outside of that Au Bon Pain.

I was sitting down at a table re-reading ``Silence of the Lambs'' and eating a ham and cheese croissant when a stranger approached me and sat down.

``Hi. Isn't your name Hani, or something?''

I had been up for a number of hours past what I thought was reasonable, and was appropriately mannered. I was tempted to reply ``Or something,'' but such a cliched and overused quip shouldn't be forced on anyone before lunch. So I replied with an affirmative noise as I took a sip of hot chocolate.

``Yeah, I remember you from 8.022 reciation. You're like editor of Voo Doo, right?''

If Jason had been with me instead of unconscious on the Voo Doo office floor with a staple gun in his hand (you don't wake Jason up when he sleeps like that) I'd have had him give this guy shit for a while. I'm not Editor of Voo Doo, and don't ever plan to be. I'm just a simple Copy Editor, thank you.

This seemed like too much work to explain at the time, so I just made another affirmative noise. I stuffed more greasy croissant into my face.

``Yeah, I saw your name in the magazine. That must be great, having to deal with a lot of stuff that's funny all the time...''

I closed my eyes. I could feign narcolepsy and maybe he'd go away. No, that'd be rude. I took another sip of hot chocolate, waved the croissant randomly, and said, ``It's okay.''

``I've come up with a few jokes of my own, just walking back and forth between classes.''

I closed my eyes again.

``I've got one like this: You know what a good name for a pretty good pilot would be?''

I opened my eyes. He seemed to be hanging on my approaching reply. I shrugged and gave him the most questioning look the calories in the crossaint would let me.

``Lancelot. Get it?''

I gave him a blank look, which involved no muscle activation and so pleased me to no end.

``See, he's a good pilot, and doesn't crash, he lands-a-lot. Lancelot, get it?'' He laughed.

I nodded a motion of general approval and contemplated walking away. Fast.

``I've got another one...'' Oh, Joy. ``What's a good name for a doctor who deals with boils all the time?''

%doctor who has to deal with boils all the time?''

I wanted to scream. This wasn't fair. I was trapped by my own fatigue and couldn't escape this person who was draining the life energy out of me like a space vampire. I drank more hot chocolate.

``Give up? Lances-alot.''

Almost against my will my right hand dropped my croissant and shot forward, digging into this man's left eye. My index and middle finger turned sideways, hooked onto the inside of his eye socket, and ripped back, breaking off a good 1'' by 2'' chunk of the man's skull. Before I knew what I was doing I pocketed the piece of bone and ran from the cafe.

I ran a convoluted circuitous route back to Building 14, and finally collapsed on the couch in the Voo Doo office, first avoiding stepping on Jason for fear of gaining a legfull of staples. After about 10 hours I woke to find myself clutching the slightly bloody hunk of bone in my hand. Jason woke up also. He scratched the back of his head as he stood up, then looked at the piece of skull I had.

``Whoa...'' he said, ``what the fuck?''

``Don't ask. Ugly scene at the Pain.''

``Hey, you should write something about it for next issue.'' That Jason, ever practical.

So, that's my story. I took the piece of bone home and boiled it in water and baking soda to get all the skin and blood off, then drilled a small hole to loop a thong through, and now I carry it with me wherever I go as a reminder of what I have become.

Keep those submissions coming!