You Don’t Forget



by Karen Topakian

You don’t forget. The unwanted hands covering your body. Their laughter. The grinding hips. The thrusting. The smell of alcohol. The faces so close. Bearded. Shaved. Stubbled. The fear. The embarrassment. The humiliation. The guilt.

You do forget the date. The time. The make and model of the car but not how your bare calves feel pushed repeatedly against the vinyl seats. You do forget the story you made up to explain your disheveled clothes and hair to your parents.

You tell no one. You lock the secret in your heart. Push it down deep. You try to shake it off.  You convince yourself you dreamt it. Imagined it. You tell yourself. You’re ok. You can handle it. It doesn’t matter. You tell yourself it never happened. Until it happens again.

Lone Wolves Anonymous Hires Public Relations Firm



Date:                         June 14, 2016

Contact:            Canis Lupus, Leader of the Pack, 1-800–HOWLING,

Lone Wolves Anonymous Hires Public Relations Firm

Jackson Hole/WY – Lone Wolves Anonymous (LWA) lashed out against the press and the public for besmirching its good name and inferring guilt by association.

For more than 40 years, lone wolves have received blame for committing random acts of violence starting with Sirhan Sirhan’s 1968 assassination of presidential candidate Robert Kennedy.

“We need to dispel the myth once and for all that lone wolves are to blame for so much carnage. We’ve had it up to here,” said Mr. Lupus pointing to his snowy white chest. “Not all lone and solitary folks are killers in sheep’s clothing.”

In response to these repeated false claims about its very nature, LWA hired the world famous public relations firm, Tooth & Nail, to burnish its falsely tarnished public image.

“We hired Tooth & Nail because they came highly recommended by the sharks who went from much feared to having their own hockey team and TV programs,” explained the pack leader excitedly.

Tooth & Nail immediately advised LWA to show the public their more fun loving and playful side. “They advocated we adapt a mantra of complete transparency. Therefore, we’ve opened up all of our activities to the general public,” announced Mr. Lupus “We’re anxious to show how everyone how we care for our young, scent mark and howl at the moon.”

Prior to hiring the PR firm, LWA tried a few less than successful image changing activities: hunting in pairs, which ended in acrimony; becoming gatherers which created packs of hangry wolves; and shifting the blame to other solitary animals, such as the Tasmanian devil, the grizzly bear and the Giant California sea cucumber.

“The bears refused to take the blame lying down,” said Mr. Lupus. “A Tasmanian devil delivered a lethal bite to a reporter seeking an interview. And the sea cucumbers let the fault wash right over their leathery skin.”

Lupus reminded the public that, “Lone wolves don’t kill people. People with guns kill people.”


Kudos from the Grim Reaper


by Karen Topakian

I had no idea this year would start off with so many corpses. Thank you.

You know I started out the year so depressed after listening to everyone wish for peace and harmony in the New Year, that I contemplated suicide. I thought, what if it’s true? What if people suddenly love and respect each other in 2015? What if peace breaks out across the land? What if the tension in the Middle East lessens? What if Boko Haram realizes they’ve misread the Koran and shouldn’t send girls into slavery but should support their education and growth? What if everyone fighting a religious war re-reads their holy book and changes their ways? Honestly, I became bereft and inconsolable. For a moment, I thought I might have to find other work or worse…kill myself.

Until Wednesday.

Imagine my relief to see so much carnage, and in Paris of all places, a world-class city! Plus you killed more journalists. What could be better than killing writers? Heck they were cartoonists, drawing pictures! Those lazy good for nothing people merely want to share their ideas and perspectives. Their work can sometimes ease tensions and bring peace. I hate when that happens.

Kudos to you all. Keep’em coming. And you know how much I prize dead innocent people not just women and children.

Regardless, you’ve already made my annual New Year’s resolution – senseless death and destruction – come true.

Honestly, I think 2015 may turn into my best year yet for sectarian violence and deadly diseases.

Especially with the death rate from Ebola growing. Excellent work. Again you almost put me out of business last year when the numbers dropped but now the outbreaks back and I’m back too, baby.

And, I’m ever hopeful on the domestic violence front. So many more football players could strangle, choke and kick their wives and girlfriends before the year ends. I see this as a potential growth area.

And here’s a bonus I hadn’t even considered. Nine people died this year in Japan by choking on mochi. Wow, didn’t see that one coming. Who knew pounded glutinous japonica rice paste could kill people. Gotta love it. I just never know where death will erupt next.

For the record, natural disasters can always revive my spirits. Earthquakes, tsunamis, tidal waves, fires, lightening strikes. Love’em all.

But I find greater joy and satisfaction from a good ole’ man made disaster. Especially ones, which could have been avoided. Bridge collapses due to a lack of infrastructure funds. Industrial accidents due to lax regulations. Environmental disasters caused by greedy corporations. Love each and everyone.

I’m also looking forward to more deaths from human made climate change. Sea level rising in heavily inhabited coastal areas will keep me in business for years to come. Not to mention droughts and violent storms. I’ve got every reason to feel hopeful.

And don’t get me started on my affection for Mafia gangland slayings. Victims mowed down in lunch spots, barbershops, bowling alleys and casinos. Sadly, I haven’t seen a good one in a very long time. But the police have picked up the slack, filling the void, by murdering unarmed people.

How could I forget honor killings?

Thankfully, we’ll always have Paris. Recently, I’ve put my faith in religious killings. Where the zealots reach for the stars and their assault rifles. God love’em.

Thank you all for pulling me right out of my whirlpool of depression. I couldn’t be happier. Business is booming. Gladly hustling new guests across the river Styx. Here’s looking at you!