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The Ten Best Articles of 2001

By Wil Forbis

It was a morning like any other at the Acid Logic offices. The whiskey bottles lay shattered on the concrete floor. The strippers were gathered on the office couch in quiet slumber. Groaning, I fumbled about for some coffee in an attempt to start the morning right. It was unusual to for me to spend a whole night at the AL complex, but I'd be informed that certain authorities were looking for me and had figured it'd be best to lay low.

"Morning, Wil!" Osama bin Laden said while strolling through the hallway. "I wish you an Allah-filled day."

"Morning, Osama," I replied. "Still comfortable in the attic?"

"It is most splendiferous, good sir," Osama replied. "Your safe harbor is most generous. I wish a thousand deaths upon your enemies in the hopes that when they perish they descend to the hundred levels of hell while birds pluck at their eyes and barb covered snakes travel through their rectums causing unimagined agony while the Afghani fruit bat claws at their…"

"Okay, Osammy, okay! Why don't you run along now?" I muttered. He'd been giving that speech every morning and it was starting to get tiresome.

"Osama!" I called out. "Before you go… what day is it?"

"It is the day the many infidels meet their final doom and the bat wings of justice fly forth to…"

"Okay, okay, forget I asked." I grumbled. "That sounds just like yesterday." I rummaged around the desk and managed to produce a calendar. "Jesus Christ!" I exclaimed. "It's January 1st of 2002! It's a whole new motherfuckin' year!"

For most people, this would be a time a great joy and jubilation. A New Year is often seen as a new beginning; a time to cleanse oneself of old habits and begin life anew. For myself it only caused increased anxiety and stomach pains. After all, I had said that in the Jan 1st issue of Acid Logic, I would release my Ten Best Acid Logic Articles of 2001 awards. What the Grammies are to music, this award ceremony would be to humorous writing. Well, humorous writing on the web. Okay, humorous writing on the web found at the address It really was a momentous occasion!

Only one problem: I'd yet to write the damn thing. I knew what the ten best Acid Logic articles of 2001 were about as well as my cat knew the Ten Commandments. So in the same panic filled, anxiety-laden state most Acid Logic material is produced in, I sat down to write.

I was about ten minutes into it, when a knock came on the door. "Max!" I said when I looked up." Why it's Max Burbank, all the way from Boston. How are you?"

"I'm doing pretty good, Wil. I told the wife and kid I needed to step out for a moment. They won't miss me for a couple days."

"Kid?" I queried. "Don't you have kids, including a new baby?"

"So that's who that is!" Max exclaimed. "I thought we'd opened a halfway house for incontinent midgets. I've got to start paying more attention!"

"So what brings you to the big city, Max" I asked.

"Well, I just thought I'd stroll by, you know… I mean I know those Acid Logic awards are coming out today. I wanted to see if I should clear out place on the old mantel place next to my Weenie award from Did I mention I won that? I beat out Dave Barry, you know. Soddy old bastard."

"Yes, Max, I believe you mentioned that a few thousand times. Congratulations. Unfortunately the Acid Logic Awards have to stay secret until I go about the painful task of contemplating each contribution made this year and formulating their intrinsic value in relation to…"

"Uhh… you mean you have picked them yet?" Max asked.

"Well, I got a general idea I replied. But I have nailed down the…"

"Gee, look…" Max hurriedly said. "I've got to get going. But, I thought you might want this little belated Christmas gift I picked up back east. It's a quarter gallon of Jim Beam Bourbon. The best in the biz!"

"Max, you know I have to give an honest opinion as to what the ten best Acid Logic articles of the year are. If I accepted this it would give the appearance of impropriety… Besides, I only drink Old Grand Dad. Now shoo! Go play 'Battleship' with Osama!"

"He's still here?" Max exclaimed. "He borrowed my box cutters last summer and never returned them. Not to mention my Plutonium supply!" And with that, the esteemed, Weenie award-winning humorist stormed off.

Writers! I thought to myself. Next they'll want to get paid. And with that I went back to work designating the awards.

"Toodly-doo, cheeky monkey!" came a call from the door. "How are you?"

"Why it's none other that Acid Logic's London correspondent, Tarryn Stewart!" I said out loud, to nobody in particular. "It's great to see you again!"

"I thought I'd finally visit your 'Merica. It doesn't seem like that big a deal. I can't see why we even bothered to fight you Bluecoats for it. But I know that today's the day you release your ten best awards. I thought I'd scamper on in and see if I picked up anything."

"No offense, Tarryn," I replied. "But you only wrote one article this year. The odds don't look good"

"Well, come on now Willy-Monkey…" Tarryn cooed. "That was a delightful piece. What was it called again?" She then moved in and began massaging my neck.

"Uhh, it was the Hanging Cross Diet, Tarryn," I replied. "Look it was a great piece, but there were a lot of great pieces this year and…"

"Let's just say," Tarryn said, breathing in my ear in her warm, sexy British accent, "That if I happened to win that award I'd be very interested in celebrating the occasion with someone, if you catch my meaning." With that she dropped a hotel key in my lap and walked out the door."

"Gulp… yes, ma'am," I managed to yelp out in a mouselike voice. I reached for a glass of water.

"Hey, buddy," a new voice came from the window. Who was climbing in but none other than John Saleeby. "How's it goin'?"

"Hey, John!" I replied. "Any reason you couldn't use the door?"

"Yeah," John replied. "The doorman wouldn't let me in. I guess this is a real class joint. It's okay, I had a lot of experience climbing out of windows whenever I did my Kennedy jokes back when I was a stand up."

"Well, the doorman does kind of like people to be wearing pants." I said

"Heh, he's a crazy old guy." John laughed. "So, you figger'd out those Acid Logic awards yet?" He gave me a friendly pat on the back.

"Well, I'm working on it." I said. "But look, John… You've consistently turned in great material for more than a year now. I don't think you have anything to…"

"Let's just say," John said, breathing in my ear in his cool, somewhat confusing Arab-Cajun accent, "That if I happened to win that award I'd be very interested in celebrating the occasion with someone, if you catch my meaning." With that he dropped a hotel key in my lap.

"Get the fuck out, John."

The rest of the day was more of the same. Jesss offered me an original copy of her poetry and a quarter ounce of some white powder she claimed wasn't anthrax. Pete Moss offered me one of his restored Stonarellos. Sean McBride plied me with some original artwork from his web zine, The Swing Machine. Kurt Kitasaki brought in baseball tickets. Cody Wayne gave me several sheets of pink blotter. Seana Sperling, Gary Sloan, Anthony Passonno… there was no end in sight.

However, I would not be swayed. I was going to decide these pieces based on merit. A lot of people had put a lot of work into Acid Logic and it would be disingenuous for me to not take this effort seriously. Not giving these awards the thought they deserved would be the height of condescension.

"Wil, honey," Drew Barrymore appeared at the door. "Are you ready for our date?"

"Gadzeeps!" I exclaimed. "Hold on! Ennie, Meenie, Minnie, Moe…"


"Don't you mean 'Year of Allah?'"

Shut up, Osama.

10) A Few of Our Favorite Things - David Chorlton

David has consistently turned in quality material for some time now, but when I first read this piece, his humorous contemplations on the neo-patriotism after September 11, it didn't exactly stand out to me. It took a few entries on the guest book and some comments from acquaintances to make me realize that David had managed to tap into a sentiment a lot of people were feeling.
Read It!

9) Last New England Yard Ape Dies In Captivity - Max Burbank
Like a lot of Max's work, when I first read through this piece, I found myself saying, "What the fuck is he talking about?" But after doing a little research on the main subject of the piece, sculptor Claes Oldenburg, it all started to make sense. And I realized not only was this a funny article, it was also a poignant look at that too short period of our lives known as childhood.
Read It!

8) Interesting Motherfuckers: Joan and John Cusack - Wil Forbis and Pete Moss
When Pete handed in his impromptu interview with John Cusack, there was no doubt that it was funny, and that it was unlike any Cusack interview ever published. (I still wonder when I'll be receiving a notice from his lawyers.) But its shortness made me hesitant to run it by itself. When I sat down to write an accompanying bio on Cusack, with his sister Joan thrown in, the words came pouring out, and I realized how important the siblings were to cultural landscape that I came of age in.
Read It!

7) Ten Things You Should Know About Jerry Lewis - John Saleeby
John has deluged Acid Logic with great material over the past 12 months, and as such, choosing his best work was an especially difficult task. This piece has always stood out to me for a number of reasons. One, it's incredibly funny. But it also does a great job of driving home the Saleeby agenda. It espouses the cause of square versus hip (e.g Jerry Lewis versus Lenny Bruce) and refuses to let people treat comedy as insignificant. Instead, John present humor as what it really is - the best art form for getting at the truth.
Read It!

6) Report from Ground Zero - Steve Forbis
After September 11th, a lot of people, including myself, were wondering if humor and magazines such as this had become irrelevant. Steve's account of his profound (and illegal) venturing onto the remains of the World Trade center three days after the attack, managed to cement the magnitude of what had happened in both a physical and spiritual sense.
Read It!

5) Daddy Warrant - Pete Moss
Pete has been the original Acid Logic fan from the early days, and has sent in several of his fictional works, all of which focus on a Pete Moss-like protagonist making his way in a unapologetic world. "Daddy Warrant," was one of the best, exploring the family dynamic in a Mickey Spillane voice, eventually resolving on a touching and affirming ending. The great strength of Pete's protagonists, like himself, is that despite all they've been through, they still manage to see the silver lining in the clouds. (For a related non-fiction work, check out his Teller and Me.)
Read It!

4) Interview with Curtis Armstrong - Wil Forbis
A lot of interviews ran in Acid Logic over the course of this past year, but the one that stuck in my head the most was this discourse with the comedic actor Curtis Armstrong. Featured in Revenge of the Nerds and the classic Savage Steve Armstrong teen comedies, Curtis, like John Cusack, was a recurring face in my teenage years. He was also a gracious interviewee, and completely unashamed of his belief that comedy is serious business.
Read It!

3) Wanted Immediately: Revisionist History Shelter - Max Burbank
As Ronald Reagan teeters on his deathbed, Max fired the first shot in what is sure to be and endless debate over the ex-President's legacy. While I didn't agree with the entirety of Max's assessment, I appreciated the directness with which he made his point, leaving no doubt where he stood. (We can be sure that we when Reagan dies, like Nixon, many of his harshest critics will line up to offer tribute.) It's also a very funny piece.
Read It!

2) Interesting Motherfuckers: Bob and Tommy Stinson - John Saleeby
There's no doubt that John defined the format of the Interesting Motherfuckers articles that run in Acid Logic every so often. They're humorous, loving tributes to a variety of b-celebrities, often unafraid to point out their target's flaws. John's look at Bob and Tommy Stinson, the lesser known members of influential punk band the Replacements carried forth this motif perfectly, as well as making a legitimate argument that while Paul Westerberg may have been the 'Mats songwriting genius, the Stinsons were its moral center.
Read It!

1) The Healing Power of Dead Baby Jokes - Wil Forbis
Editors of other web zines might posses a certain humility that would prevent them from awarding themselves the top spot in their own magazine. Fortunately, I possess no such restrictions. On the whole, I felt our special WTC attacks issue was one of our best (Including the aforementioned "…Ground Zero" piece as well as Saleeby's "The Death of the American Wise Ass" and Max Burbank's "No Working Title." My great struggle over the course of this zine has been to try and combine humor with serious themes. It was only after numerous comments from several readers that I realized I had done so in this analysis of how tragedy breeds comedy.
Read It!



Wil Forbis is a well known international playboy who lives a fast paced life attending chic parties, performing feats of derring-do and making love to the world's most beautiful women. Together with his partner, Scrotum-Boy, he is making the world safe for democracy. Email -

Visit Wil's web log, The Wil Forbis Blog, and receive complete enlightenment.

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