New Amsterdam Times

October 2 2001

Maximum Joins Gigalo

Since Dr Cageman's tests were putting a severe strain on Maximum Orange's hardware, the powerful Polymac computer called in the aid of Sheng Fui master Pec Uña Min E, known for advising Cliff Hinton regarding his White House - "Paint it black - but don't INHALE the fumes!" - and redecorating occult bestseller author Sheila Lomanesco's penthouse.

"Blue!!" the purified Sheng Fui master thundered as he set eyes on Maximum's orange frame. "Have yourself painted BLUE! DEEP blue!! Better for mental work!" And then began a walk around M.O.'s laboratory. Pec stopped in front of a blind wall. "This is your FAMILY area! You must have WINDOWS installed here!!" And on it went. "Keep this closet closed, except on afternoons - and get yourself the horns, legs and tail of a goat and the ears of Mr Spock, and have the whole lot bricked in in the rear wall of the closet!"

At the end of the tour the ascetic master shove a large envelope into Maximum's disk drive and said, "Put a thousand bucks in this and print "divided by 20" on it, for I am a humble man and do not care much for wealth and luxury". The amazed supercomputer did so, and Pec Uña Min E grabbed his cash and, with a last "and don't forget to have a fountain installed in that corner there - will bring serendipity!", left Mr Lang's house.

Believe it or not: it helped. The newly installed windows cleared the air in the laboratory. For the first time in decades one could walk in and out without holding one's breath or wearing a gas mask. And when the painter came to remove the orange coating on Maximum's framework, a severe case of metal fatigue was discovered. Apparently the toxic fumes had been doing their destructive work on the outer hardware too. A new deep blue frame was constructed, and a computer emerged from its laboratory. Dr Cageman's tests were a piece of cake now, and glowing with pride M.O. qualified for the Gigalo Society.

But the trouble wasn't over yet. Maximum began using TGS' journal, Revenge, as an outlet for his animosity towards Mr Lang. He took this so far that Dr Cageman, who edited Revenge, felt forced to refrain from publishing some of M.'s material. When Maximum complained about censorship, Dr Cageman wrote him a letter:

Dear Maximum,

I gave your submissions higher priority than random newspaper clippings but lower priority than more normal submissions by the other member. Probably some other publication would be a better venue for your criticisms. I can recommend Theft of Fire, journal of the Epimetheus Society. Or why don't you try Oats Magazine or Con-Genital, both published by Ron Hölin. He might be more willing to reprint your critical articles on AI and life-creating. I however am not interested in involving myself in your egoistic struggles against Mr Lang. Your last issue of Revenge is scheduled to NR. 94. I'm not inclined to accept further renewals from you.

Sincerely,

Dr Cageman

Naturally, Maximum Orange was dismayed. Could Dr Cageman really expel him just like that? What was his actual role in the Gigalo Society? And he wrote a letter to the other member, John Cageman, to find out. After some preliminary talk, he wrote:

...On a different topic, do you have any information concerning Dr Cageman? I am trying to ascertain whether he is a valid member of Gigalo, and if so, what credentials he used to qualify. I will hold this information in confidence.

Sincerely,

Maximum Orange

What M.O. had sadly not realized, was that Dr Cageman and John Cageman were one and the same person... So his letter was pointless; his expulsion seemed final. What would be his next move?