You don't sell out all at once.

Lucky was perfect. Once General Mills saw him, they realized that nobody else could possible embody their new Lucky Charms cereal. He got to bargain, and he obtained creative control - he decided which charms were lucky, and which weren't.

For years, it was the four that he'd loved forever. While we are from different areas of Ireland, I understood completely why he chose those four items. They WERE lucky. Do you remember the poetry when he spoke them? Almost like a song. Full of lilt and power:

Orange stars! Yellow moons! Pink hearts! Green clovers! If you have access to old commercials, listen to him saying these words in the early 1970s.

And then, he got into debt, as many people do. And in 1975, I was in his kitchen, cooking a special meal for him, P, and three representatives of the DeBeers company. And then P was asked to wait in the kitchen with me (and he didn't help me clean up a thing, of course) and a month or two later, it was: Orange stars! Yellow moons! Pink hearts! Green clovers! and Blue Diamonds!

Lucky was perfect, and he managed to say "Blue Diamonds" enthusiastically, but they just aren't lucky - not in the same way the others are, anyway. And the words just didn't flow.

And in 1984, more debt, a meeting with representatives from the Cottam Horseshoe company, and he added "Purple Horseshoes." He didn't even PRETEND to say it with rhythm, for the phrase HAS no rhythm. Orange stars! Yellow moons! Pink hearts! Green clovers! and Blue Diamonds! and Purple Horseshoes. THUD.

By the early 1990s, he was negotiating with Carter-Wallace - the manufacturers of Trojan Condoms. I will not even TELL you what their initial offer to him was, but after a compromise we had Red Balloons. They aren't even lucky at ALL!

P does this amazing imitation of Lucky saying" Orange stars! Yellow moons! Pink hearts! Green clovers! and Blue Diamonds! and Purple Horseshoes... and ummm... red balloons.... oh! and Grey Capacitors! And puce bits of string, I think, oh god I am such a green whore."

But, all kidding aside... a tombstone key? a time-traveling hourglass? Jesus, Lucky, this is my heritage, too.

Diplomacy of the Stupid

For two months Toucan Sam has been bragging that he's been doing top-secret diplomacy work for the US government. Snap! found out through an Afghani friend who found out from god-knows-where that all Toucan Sam did was visit Saddam Hussein a few times over breakfast to try to get him to give away secrets. Saddam told him to get lost.

Thank you very much for all of your emails. I'm living at home again, doing new photoshoots for cereal boxes, and all. P. is threatening to go on strike if Kellogg's doesn't do something about boxes of our cereal being displayed between Shrek and Scooby Doo. Marylin is engaged. Life goes on.

(no subject)

Ignore anything you've read in the press; they got it all wrong. I never had a fistfight with *POW*. I've never said more than two words to him.

I got a call yesterday morning, asking me to come to work. *POW* had just been fired. Evidently, Snap! and P. refused to come in until he was gone. I feel bad about the way it all happened, but after the third take of the "dive into the milk from a diving board" commercial I felt like myself again, and was insanely happy all the day.

We went out at eight-o-clock to this huge party that Smedley was holding, and P. deliberately slipped cocoa-puffs to Sonny the Cuckoo Bird, and mayhem ensued, and it was great.

After work today, I'm going to call Natasha.

(no subject)

Mom and Dad would have let me stay forever, but it was time to return to work. If it weren't for my job, I wouldn't exist, after all.

I was going to call Marilyn the day before, so she could plan the shooting schedule appropriately, but then I realized that my long, unexplained absence gave me an opportunity I would likely never have again.

So at 6 AM I lay on P.'s doorstep, made up like a corpse. It might seem that just laying there for an hour or so would require heroic patience, but I'd undergone far worse at the prison recently. This was nothing.

At 7 AM the door opened, and there was a scream. It wasn't P., it was some muscle-bound guy I'd never seen before. P. came to the door, wearing nothing but a towel and a collar, and tensed up like he was going to scream, too, but suddenly kicked me very hard. When I winced, he started calling me names, and then he was crying and the muscle guy had no idea what was going on, and I started to cry, too.

I had a cup of pretty bad Lipton while P. got ready for work, and we went together. He wanted me to do the corpse-routine for Snap!, but it was out of my system.

I hadn't even suspected that I'd been replaced - I thought they would just use old footage and odd camera angles. But there at the meeting table were Chaim, Marilyn, Snap! and *POW*.

*POW* was wearing a ten-gallon hat, smoking a cigarette, and had a well-trimmed mustache. The others seemed to like him. P. looked at me with an expression I'd never seen on his face before - shame. "Surprise," he said quietly.

Cheered up

This morning began with a young woman eating two bowls of Rice Krispies cereal out of a mixing bowl in her underwear.

Cheered up, I got out of the straw nest on the floor, stepped over the snoring Banana Wackies Gorilla, and decided to start taking my life back.

I'm not ready to go to work yet, but I will be in Ireland in two hours, greeting my mother, telling her I'm okay, and telling her what's wrong.

I'm sure there will be a manditory visit to Mrs. Keebler, and then ...

and then whatever I do, it will be in a forward direction.

(no subject)

About 40 years ago, I moonlighted as the embodiment of Banana Wackies cereal. I was soon replaced by Wackies Boy and Banana Wackies Gorilla, because moonlighting was against the rules.

I spent last night on the floor of the small apartment of Wackies Boy (now Wackies Man) and Banana Wackies Gorilla (now King Wackimus Grodd Supreme). You have never smelled any apartment this bad. And they charged me rent. I have no money, but they took my I.O.U.

I think I have hit rock bottom. It may be time to go home.

Kicked out

Tip for you all, just in case:

When the Kool-Aid man has two bottles of everclear in him, it is not a good time to get him on the subject of Goofy Grape, Jolly Olly Orange, et. al. It is especially a bad idea to mention the brothers: Chinese Cherry and Choo-Choo Cherry.

I have no idea where I'm going to stay tonight.

I have to get out of here.

If I were to stay at your home, the first night, at 4 AM, I would start organizing your cabinets.

I do that - it makes me feel more comfortable, and I have never met anyone who minded the gesture. I do it so quietly that nobody wakes up and although you will guess that it was me, I will not leave you any concrete evidence.

My father would clean gunk out of his hosts' pipes. My grandfather would go through the house and repair all the shoes. It's just what we do.

Kool-Aid's cabinets were easy. Ruffles in one cabinet, Doritos in a second, and the 15 bottles of Everclear in a third.

That was when I arrived. We are down to one bottle. All he does is watch baseball, eat snacks, order pizza, and pour bottles of everclear into himself.

(no subject)

Dear Kool-Aid.

Thank you for rescuing me. You probably saved my life.
This does not make you non-annoying.

It is NOT necessary to go "Ohhhh Yeah!!!!!" loudly after every succesful bowel movement.

Thinking out of the box as it were

I have no idea what date it is. I have no idea what year it is.

Over a year in a Bulgarian prison. I stopped counting, I think. I don't know. I tried to escape, but there really was no way. Mindless days to think... couldn't get sleep. Got too much sleep.

Then, about an hour ago - simplicity itself. I went to the prison exercise yard and yelled out "Hey, Kool-Aid!"

I'm in his Hastings, Nebraska mansion, trying to figure out what happens next.