John Hicks

The scene: A top-security research lab. Monday morning, 8 AM. The present.

Enter BOB, researcher extraordinaire. His lab partner, EDDIE, is already at his desk. They drink coffee out of space-age mugs.

BOB: Morning.


BOB: Holy cow. I really tied one on last night.

EDDIE: That Night Train is a mean wine.

BOB: You’re tellin’ me. What’s on the to-do list?

EDDIE: Nothing.

BOB: Nothing?

EDDIE: Zip. Nada. Zero. Zilch.

BOB: Sounds good to me. I need a nap.

EDDIE: You know, Bob, I’ve been thinking …

BOB: Yeah?

EDDIE: What say (sly grin) we weaponize some bird flu?

BOB: Highly lethal and contagious? A super-spreader?

EDDIE: You’re reading my mind.

BOB: I always got a hankerin’ for a powerful new pathogenic organism. Especially one with a little Armageddon flavor.

EDDIE: Or we could just play World of Warcraft until somebody catches us goofing off.

BOB: No, let’s stick with the bird-flu thing.

EDDIE: A few mutations and, well, you are your father’s brother.

BOB: Easy as falling off a log.

EDDIE: Whoa!

BOB: What?

EDDIE: It just hit me. Man, this is sweet.

BOB: C’mon, give.

EDDIE: We write up all the details and publish them in a major scientific journal.

BOB: Effin’ genius. That’s what that is.

EDDIE: I’m thinking Hollywood all the way. Six-figure option. Dustin Hoffman.

BOB: Anything I can do, personally, to get Dustin Hoffman back into a hazmat suit …

EDDIE: It’s not a win-win proposition. It’s more like a win-win-win proposition.

Jimmy Gabacho

Part I/Part II/Part III

Mojada, Part IV

Reuniting with Dad

After staying with my grandparents for a month in Santa Ana California we flew to Chicago in April to be with our dad. We arrived at O’Hare airport and when we saw Dad, we were simply ecstatic. I thought. “We are finally here with dad.” It is not an easy transition for someone when they first move from one place to another. Imagine how you have felt when you have moved from one house to another or from living at home to living in a dorm. It’s strange. You are entering a complete new world, new culture, new customs, new everything. My dad had rented an apartment for us to live in. He used to live with my uncle and two other men in a different apartment, but when he found out we were coming he made arrangements so that we could have our own place. It was barely furnished and I remember we had to use buckets as chair whenever we ate and our dining table was also the center table in the living room. We definitely did not have much but through my dad’s hard work and support from my grandmother our almost empty apartment began to look like home. Then again I think that us being together was sufficient to call it home.