Sinister Regard : February 2013
            
The following story is an outtake from my memoir The Accidental Terrorist. The names of most of the other participants, including relatives, have been changed to offer some small measure of concealment.

When I was eighteen, my father and I drove from northern Utah to Los Angeles for my cousin Delia's wedding. I had recently put in my application to become a Mormon missionary, and I had yet to learn where I'd be spending the next two years of my life. It wasn't for the sake of one last road trip with my father, though, that I agreed to tag along. I was hoping to meet Danny Elfman.

After the wedding—a brief affair in a tiny chapel like a sugar-frosted cake—the entire gathering moved down the road to the Arcadia Women's Club, a large banquet hall for rent, where a shaggy trio played jazz on a spare proscenium. A dozen long tables were set up in ranks across the room, and we enjoyed an abundant feast of cold cuts, casseroles, and cakes as the music played. "Hey," I said to my aunt Deborah, who sat across from my father and me, "I thought Oingo Boingo was supposed to play."

"All Delia and Sammy's friends are musicians," she said, "so lots of different people are playing. I don't think they're on until later."

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'Deus ex Machina' by Perry Slaughter
I'm chagrined at the necessity of even mentioning it—especially in light of the fiasco that was Chairman of the Board—but the very novella that kickstarted my so-called career back in 1985 is in print again.

It's called Deus ex Machina, and though I wouldn't wish a copy of this abortion on my worst enemy, I sincerely hope you'll grit your teeth and buy a copy.

It's coming in an e-blah version later this year, but until then you can get the (admittedly attractive) hardcover edition here. For a limited time only, my publishers have discounted it by 25%. (I suspect that, to them, "a limited time" means "forever," but don't delay anyway.)

Here's what those bean-counting freaks have to say about this appalling little volume:

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The Accidental Terrorist 30th Anniversary Sale

Signed editions
that even a
missionary
could afford.

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