Bad news Rip Taylor Junior, you're fired!In May of last year I experienced a powerful epiphany about how I had been living my life. After decades of servitude I realized that all that time I had spent burying my true leadership potential had been worse than useless. Instead of getting ahead in life I had been treated like a welcome mat by anyone who needed something done. At that moment back in May I resolved to unveil the new me, the real me, The Boss. Unfortunately, Lowtax threatened to fire me if I didn't stop acting crazy and The Boss once again disappeared beneath the waves in a sea of "yes massah" and "no massah". I returned to my former life as a cog in this big crazy machine that some really optimistic fools call "life".

Last week all of that changed when - if it's even possible - I had a re-epiphany. I was standing at the counter of my local supermercado and buying my usual scratch and win lottery ticket. I'm a humble man and I lead an ascetic life of self-denial, the one allowance being a weekly purchases of a scratch and win lottery ticket. This purchase has always been the sole thread of hope to which I desperately cling that there is more to life than writing updates and succumbing to the slow eroding tide of entropy. This gossamer monofilament proved to be stronger than I thought when I scratched off the spaces on my Krazy Kash Bonanza ticket and discovered that I had won. I looked once at the ticket, looked at the clerk, then back at the ticket to confirm my odds-defying victory over the inevitable crushing defeat life deals us all.

It was real, I was holding a winner, and like the fires of creation washing through the universe to create the sun that warms this tiny blue planet a new star was born. Only in this case a more appropriate analogy would be to the phoenix rising triumphant and reborn from its own necrotic ashes. The Boss was back, and baby he was back in glittering diamond encrusted spades. I flipped the cashier a quarter and with a spring in my step I strutted out of the supermercado to resume The Boss's good work.

The Boss had a lot to do after such a long hiatus and my first order of business was to inform Lowtax that he was back in town.

Of course I also had to tell my coworkers that Zack was old news and the headlines these days were being printed about The Boss.

I assumed that the news of The Boss's arrival would gradually percolate to various other coworkers whose names The Boss can't waste time repeating here and couldn't even be bothered to remember if I did have the spare time. After that I had to let my girlfriend, my family, and my pets know that I was The Boss. I briefly considered hiring a skywriter to fly over Chicago and write the words "THE BOSS IS BACK" in the sky with smoke. Then I came to my senses and realized that the Chicago skyline is probably not visible from Ohio, California, or Missouri and my cats probably would not even notice. Instead I had my doting manservant Horatio contract a singing telegram company to dispatch their loathsome chirpers to many far flung locations heralding the news of The Boss. I was told that the song was to be sung to the tune of "My Boyfriend's Back" but I have already forgotten the lyrics.SAFE! But your job isn't, because you're OUT on your ass buddy.Rather than resting on my laurels and waiting for letters of adulation and supplication to come rolling in I set to work immediately on the not insignificant task of restoring the trappings of The Boss to my previously humble life. It's vital that The Boss has a lifestyle on par with his incomparable stature and I was determined not to disappoint myself.

I started by pulling up stakes and moving with my girlfriend, the cats, and faithful Horatio to a well-fortified compound in the ridiculous mansion district of Beverly Hills. The Boss doesn't associate with those Hollywood scumbags, but like writhing maggots erupting from a corpse's fertile eye sockets they have flocked to the most hospitable of environments. According to Horatio my own compound had once belonged to John Wayne, which is fine by me since he's the only straight-talking man ever to live in California.

Of course not even The Duke is on par with The Boss, so a number of major renovations and modifications had to be made. I replaced the modest stables with a four storey glass structure intended to contain my stenographer pool. The structure was wired to every room in the house and would transmit anything I said to the 86 Japanese stenographers I hired to transcribe my thoughts. Because mere typewriters or computers would be entirely insufficient for The Boss they were left with instructions to write each piece of dictation on a series of grains of rice. When I needed to know something I would then order the corresponding rice bag and have Horatio cook it up. After attempting this once I realized that eating the rice did not impart the knowledge scribed on it.

To remedy this wholly unacceptable situation I immediately contracted the National Cathedral in Washington D.C. to pray day and night for God to make it so that eating rice dictation was an acceptable way of recalling data. So far Cardinal John Hastings has proven incapable of serving as an intermediary in negotiations between The Boss and God and I am currently entertaining the possibility of hiring a Mosque in Saudi Arabia to take up the work.

Even though that problem is still unresolved I have spent every waking moment bringing the rest of the compound into a condition sufficient for The Boss to make it his home. I was going to eat a bag of rice and repeat all such modifications here but then I remembered that those worthless money-burning hymns still have not solved the rice problem. Instead I have asked Horatio to inventory all of the upgrades to the compound and list them in brief here. Please let me know if Horatio missed something as he is long overdue for a brutal lashing and I need a good excuse to dust off the rubber apron and the scourge.

Master's Six Excellent Alterations
By HoratioGreat work on that drug bust, now clear out your desk Officer Lazy because you're fucking fired! New lighting fixtures were installed in all of the compound's 43 bathrooms. These fixtures consist of a large bio-luminescent deep sea angler contained within a pressurized glass cylinder. Flipping the switch on the wall will release a small crustacean into the tank that will cause the angler to begin emitting light. The fish die frequently in the less visited portions of the compound and have to be replaced at great cost. An entire business exists solely to keep the light tanks stocked by mounting deep sea expeditions to various abyssal ocean thermal vents.

The Boss has very discerning tastes when it comes to seating arrangements. For his sitting room he has arranged for an antique gilded throne to be imported from a wealthy Japanese business man's private collection. The throne belonged to Enrique Esplanade IV, a duke of Spain alive in the 15th century, and is said to be the most exquisitely detailed piece of furniture ever produced in Europe. For the dining area The Boss insisted that trenches be dug along either side of the long table, which is itself composed of carved ivory. Guests will find themselves seated on bare metal boxes situated one foot below floor level inside the trenches. The chair for The Boss at the head of the table is the most advanced Belgian ergonomic design and is situated atop a thirty meter high tower with an adjoining elevator.

An elaborate tunnel, chute, and ladder system was installed within and beneath the walls of the house so that I can travel quickly and discreetly to The Boss's side whenever anything is needed. My own private quarters are a ceramic cylinder buried one mile below the earth's surface. When I am needed auto-injectors will stab painfully into my veins and flood my circulatory system with a cocktail of drugs that immediately wake me up and fill me with an unwavering purpose. My living quarters are then launched by rocket into the connecting drop point that leads to the servant's tunnel system.

Garbage throughout the house is deposited into a system of pressurized tubes that carry it to a central dumping site in the Nevada desert. Members of the French Foreign Legion are paid to burn every piece of garbage into ash with flamethrowers and then mix the ash with quick dry cement. The resulting cement cubes are being used to gradually assemble a castle which should be completed by 2007. At which point it will be burned with a flamethrower into lava and the process will start over.

An underground genetics laboratory has been outfitted with the most advanced microbiology equipment and staffed by the most skilled and unscrupulous genetics scientists alive today. These scientists are working to gradually create the tallest and most athletic women possible using a large number of North Korean volunteers. The painful gene therapy treatments have so far proven to result in complications for the women, who are then donated to the San Diego Children's Zoo. The ultimate goal of this project is to fill out the roster of the Beverly Hills Scary Ladies, a professional women's basketball team that will serve as the lynchpin for the new WNBA and will brutally humiliate all male NBA teams.

The Joyatarium is a unique creation of The Boss. It is a domed structure roughly two hundred meters in diameter and located on the edge of the property. No one, including me, is permitted to enter the structure. The screams carry on well into the night whenever Master enters.

I would thank Horatio for that interlude but he is currently enjoying a one week stay in the Joyatarium after revealing the existence of the Joyatarium.

The next step No, that's not how it goes at all.

Ladies and gentlemen, I am not The Boss. I am, well, I don't know exactly what you'd want to call me. Maybe I am "The Chump". Let me tell you a little about The Chump.

The Chump eats over the sink when it's convenient and is not above taking food with him into the bathroom. The Chump once consumed an entire meal including dessert while taking a crap and somehow debased himself further by reading pornography at the same time. He is under the impression that his fingers are an adequate substitute for a comb. The number of times he has actually used a comb or brush in the past three years almost directly parallels the number of times he has been forced to go to a wedding. The Chump chain smokes so much that the inside of his index and middle finger are stained black with nicotine and he can actually confer cancer on people with a handshake. He seemingly purchases books with the impression that the information they contain will fly into his head when he places them on a shelf.

The Chump wears every pair of pants twice before forcing himself to do laundry and actually considered trying the "turn the underwear inside out" trick. He replaces socks after wearing them once because every single pair disappears under furniture or, mysteriously, into the sky. The Chump has a very ill-defined but extremely chronic illness that can prevent him from doing anything he really doesn't want to do.

The Chump is starting to feel sick. The Chump would end this article right now.

And I never play the damn lottery!

Of Ham and Helicopters: The Photoshop Phriday Story

Hi guys, the title you just read has absolutely nothing to do with this week's Photoshop Phriday. It's a lie, much like my life. Livestock here, living a lie and bringing you your standard weekly advertisement for the new Photoshop Phriday. Our theme this week is "Political Cartoons," and yes, that sounds dreadful. To be honest this is one of our less exciting outings, but it's still better than spending a romantic weekend with the corpse of Norman Fell.

Please read this anyway and I promise we will never do this theme ever again.

– Zack "Geist Editor" Parsons (@sexyfacts4u)

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