I'm A Human Lab RatCommentary • ISSUE 31•08 • Mar 5, 1997 By Jim Anchower – The Cruise Hola amigos. What's going down in your part of town? I know it's been a long time since I rapped at ya, but Jim Anchower is a busy man, so you should consider every word I give you a gift from above. So what have I been doin'? Plenty, and then some. I finally got a new job, which was just in time 'cause my vehicle was in desperate need of hard-core repair. Last I told you, I had a busted-up radiator. Well, I was tight on cash, so rather than replace it, I tried to patch it up with some liquid-metal epoxy shit and some pie tin. Now, it takes a big man to admit a mistake, and believe me, I made a big freakin' mistake. Here's a tip, hombre: Leave the radiators to the professionals. There's no amount of cobbling that's gonna set a radiator right for good. Except maybe putting pepper in with your coolant, but that's only if the holes are real small. Anyway, do what I did, and you too are gonna wind up with an overheated car with busted pistons. So anyway, at this moment, I need a big-time influx of cash. That "friend" of mine Ron still owes me 20 bucks, so I went to him to collect. He, of course, didn't have it on him, but he said that he'd turn me on to a job opportunity that would get me my 20 bucks back, and then some. I told him I ain't sellin' weed or nothing, 'cause I tried that before, and I just smoked away most of my profits. So he said I could collect 150 bucks doing nothing more than getting fed and hanging out playing video games at this place for a few days. "Oh," he added, "and you also gotta have about 16 blood samples taken and your piss collected." Well, keep in mind that Jim Anchower was desperate to locate any source of income at that point, so I didn't think twice about it. Then Ron told me you can't smoke any weed for a while before, and that made me stop for a while and think. Now, I'm no degenerate drug addict or anything, but I do like to toke on the occasional stick now and again. I don't like anyone telling me I can't, but 150 bucks is 150 bucks, so I decided I'd make the sacrifice. Two weed-free weeks later, I went down to the place for a check-up. I told them I don't drink, smoke or do nothing bad. Then they got pretty personal, if you know what I mean. Now, I know that these are qualified professionals and all that, but they were poking me in places that I've never poked me, if you catch my drift. Finally, after 30 embarrassing minutes, they told me I'm USDA grade A, and ready for testing. Actually, I was pretty psyched. First off, 'cause it was the first job I'd had in a while, and second off, 'cause I got 15 bucks just for going in to get prodded in the first place. They told me to come back in three days and bring plenty to read and a few changes of clothes. I thought that was weird, but you never know what goes on in the heads of those doctor types. I went back three days later, all ready to get the show on the road. I went into this room filled with losers and rejects of all varieties. Apparently, they weren't as discriminating as I thought when I signed on to this project. They told us that our contributions will not only be financially rewarded, but we will also feel proud knowing that we have helped heartburn sufferers everywhere. Well, I don't know about that, 'cause I figured that Brian Dennehy dude was already doing enough on that front, but I wasn't about to disagree, seeing as they had that 150-dollar carrot. Then they told us we were going to have to stay there for seven days while they ran their tests. When I heard that, I almost split. There's contributing to science and making 150 bucks and all, but then there's hanging out with two dozen dinguses for a week. But then I thought about how spring was coming, and how I was going to have to fix my wheels for prime cruising season, so I decided to stay. Plus, they had a Sony Play Station, so I figured I could make it through without losing my shit. The first day was all right. I took some pill, let them drain me and played some race game on the Play Station to keep my driving skills up to snuff while I was imprisoned. This one guy kept trying to strike up a conversation, but I wasn't having any of that. I pointed to the game and said, "Can't talk." He seemed to understand that, 'cause after that he left me alone. The next day, they gave us this spicy food to see if it would give us heartburn. I don't want to brag, but I gotta say that I got an iron stomach, so it was pretty much smooth sailing. Around the third day, though, I had diarrhea something fierce. They must've been testing out some other stuff and not telling me the truth. But I figured I'd stick it out for the money. By the fourth day, people had finally gotten the message that I was a loner. No one came up to me trying to start some bullshit conversation, and that's just how I liked it. By this time, I had also mastered the driving game, so I could play it for hours without having to give it up to some dipwad. I was getting pretty bored with it, so I turned to the videotapes they had. Nothing but crap. Snow White? No way. Rambo 3? Only the lamest one of the series. Das Boot? What the hell is that? By the sixth day, I was climbing the walls. I was getting sick of the food, sick of the lame-o's I was staying with and sick of getting stuck with a needle every four hours. Plus, I had watched all the movies, no matter how retarded. I needed to get out of there and chill at my pad. I was just about ready to leave when I remembered that I had to keep this up in order to fix my car. Finally, the week was over, and I got the hell out of there. I was so psyched to just go home and sit on my couch and drink a cold Miller Genuine Draft. Only, when I got home, there was a note in the fridge from Ron (God only knows how the hell he got into my apartment), saying that he drank my beer while I was gone 'cause he thought I owed it to him for fixing him up with that gig. I'll gig him right in the face if he pulls that shit again. Good thing he didn't find my stash or he'd really be in a world of hurt. Three weeks have gone by, and I haven't seen Ron or my money, and I'm really gettin' pissed. I called the clinic, and they said I should've gotten it by now. So now I got no money, no beer, and I'm running out of food, except for the dozen frozen pizzas I won a while back at Piggly Wiggly. If you know of a job, let me know, 'cause I'm in dire straits. Or if you see Ron, tell him I want my 20 bucks. I'd do it myself, but like I said, I'd just end up kicking his ass, and I don't want any trouble. At least not that kind of trouble.