Hide It Under A Bush? OH NO!


The HE Podcast is back! Episode 84 is live! 

Grammar Dalek T-Shirts are in and shipping now!  

GenCon is right now. Hit up Blind Ferret (booth 119) and you’ll be able to pick up some of my shirts and books. You can also bother Randy.

Toronto Fan Expo is very soon!  I’ll be there with Blind Ferret. The week after that I’ll be at Dallas Animefest with Rob from Explosm.

The Fancy Sketch ends TODAY! Every Fancy Sketch and donation in the month of August goes toward helping me buy a new air conditioner for my home.

COMMENTERS: What’s the craziest improvised “weapon” you’ve ever seen or heard of being used in a fight? Was it better than a half a raccoon stuck on an old shovel? The answer is no. No it wasn’t. I’ve only been in 2 or 3 real fights in my entire life and all of them were before I entered high school. Once, in 6th grade, a kid tried to start a fight with me when I was walking home. I was talking all sorts of shit about his “momma” and how said momma owed me “money” because I was her “pimp.” That little fucker up and pulled out a compass from his Trapper Keeper and tried to stab my ass with it. A FUCKING COMPASS! A lesson to would-be purchasers of mathematical school supplies. A compass EASILY doubles as a murder weapon. Protractors are mostly harmless.


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  1. I'm sorry, I have to object. I would never, EVER, order takeout from a place called Hunan Palace. Ever. Christ (raccoon) on a Stick.

  2. I have never seen any bizarre weapons in real life, but in 2 dreams I had a couple months back there were 2 bizarre weapons. The first one was someone was using a catapult to launch wet (pissed off) cats over a castle wall so that they would swarm and maul people. The second weapon was someone was beat to death with a shampoo bottle, I can't remember what it was over though.

    • I had a dream once or twice (the weapon user was recurring character, showed up on the moon once), with a biro pen where the clicky thing turned on its AM radio, which killed people. It was like a sonic screwdriver, but evil.

  3. Hmm… bizarre? I've used an old 70's style phone (rotary dial), a walking stick (not much of a stretch for a weapon), a computer power cord, a corded mouse, and a printer (dot matrix). Why yes, I am in IT, how did you know?

  4. Not sure if it counts as a weapon, but I did hear tell of a guy in a shouting match who reached into his pants, grabbed a fistful of his own pubic hair, ripped it out, stuck it in his mouth, chewed on it, and spat it at the other guy.

    Ended the shouting match.

  5. I keep a glass, pyramid-shaped paper weight on my desk at work, as a weapon just in case the zombie apocalypse strikes in its natural habitat (cubicles.)

  6. Once when we were in our early teens, my younger brother tried to strangle me with a telephone cord (back in the dark ages when phones had cords). Perhaps that's not a very unusual weapon, let's see…

    Then there was the time that some jerks (who were at least 3 years older) were picking on my brother and his friends when they were trying to play hockey on the neighbourhood rink. So there was a scuffle, and my brother got the other guy down on the ice and stabbed at his junk with his skate blade! Everyone was fine in the end, but I thought that was a pretty creative way to turn the tables on that punk. My brother had anger issues as a child…

  7. Haven't actually had to use any improv weapons in a while, but there have been some violent break-ins in the region recently; my wife's contingency plan, if she's in the living room when someone breaks in, is to grab the ferrets out of their cage and throw them at her attacker's face, giving her time to grab something more, well, weapony…

  8. When my husband was in the Navy, his chief taught him 32 ways to incapacitate and/or kill someone with a #2 pencil. I imagine in a pinch, he could always use one of my sketch or colored pencils, since we don't keep #2 pencils in the house.

  9. A guy I knew at the university used to play rugby. He told me that he got a finger broken on purpose by a rival at one game. So, for another match with that team he prepared is sweet (cold) vengeance and sharpened one of the steel cups from under his shoes. I don't even want to put in words the result of that, but he did get avenged.

  10. The Dyna-knife from Cowboys and Aliens. In retrospect, it was the only thing that rendered that movie worth watching.

  11. Nobody who is anywhere near being cool would be caught dead in a 1975 Charger. Now a 1968 Charger R/T, different story.

  12. No fancy weapon-talk, but I did see Danny Trejo in the lobby of a hotel in Austin this summer. Got my picture took with him and everything.

    Come to think of it, now I can use my phone as an improvised weapon because it has a picture of me and Danny Trejo on it. Hmm…

  13. Haven't seen it used, but my friend is the paranoid type and, among the many weapons he has scattered around his room, the one kept most conveniently available near his bed is the bar off an old dumbell, the kind where you can throw on weights from a set of barbells. It looks like one of the nastiest blunt weapons you could possibly improvise, what with the square bolt sticking out of that big, heavy catch that keeps the weight in place…

  14. A tennis racket. In my youngerish days I was bicycling to the tennis courts with my racket in a knapsack, stringed end in and grip end out to one side. A boorish kid who I considered more of a bully confronted me in order to demand the use of my bike. I demurred, saying I was on the way to the courts, and with a slight turn and drop of a shoulder was able to strike him about the head with the protruding end of my racket.

  15. I grew up in the sticks.
    I shit you not, our version of tag involved lengths of drywall conduit with a dozen bottle rockets hanging out of the end, adjustable bic lighters set on full throttle, and trashcan lids for shields.

    Roman candles were considered cheating.

  16. A bean burrito is the best weapon I've ever seen in a fight. In high school my little brother, who was 6'4 215 as a Junior, was being goaded into a fight by a guy with short mans complex. As he wasn't particularly bothered by the kid he continued eating his lunch. When the kid finally started dropping a line about our mother my brother reacted: "You seem hungry." He then fed the kid the burrito. It was not a willing meal. It was also the greatest way to end a fight I've ever seen.

  17. I have smacked someone upside the head with my cell phone in my hand. It was an old, 1999 era cell, what would be called a 'brick' by today's standards, which I kept and used because I was in construction, and it would survive being dropped from heights, knocked into things while I would be carrying materials and so forth.
    The phone was fine after being struck by a human head.
    Too bad I had nothing witty to say about the whole situation. =

  18. I feel better that I'm not the only one who has been stabbed with a compass. Only I was a teacher being attacked by a student. Why the fuck is a seventh grader six feet tall, anyway?!

  19. I was shopping at a nation-wide outlet that rhymes with "Cabela's" and paused at the gun counter. I asked the elderly gentleman behind the counter what he recommended for a home defense weapon. He produced a Remington 12ga shotgun. It had a wicked flame arrestor on the end with jagged edges. Forget the 12ga blast coming through it, this thing would have made for a perfectly awful gouging thing. The salesman brightened at my interest and explained the "really good part" about the barrel end. "It lets you put the gun right up against a door and blow the lock off. These holes let the gas escape so it doesn't damage the barrel". Good idea. I then pointed out that, being the home defender, I would not be the one coming through the door, rather the one on the inside, protecting against intruders. That seemed to set him back, sales pitch-wise. Ever one to find the upside, and as straight-faced as I could keep it, I added, "…but it's nice to know that same design would be equally effective against, say… a FOREHEAD!!". His eyes didn't widen, more like his jaw and face drooped to the point of producing the same effect. I'm sure he was evaluating the career path whereby he arrived at "helping these people". I finally cracked up. The guy at the counter next to me lost it. High five.

    I didn't buy the gun. Just looking, thanks.

  20. I read a news article where a woman attacked a robber by hitting him with a 3 ft alligator she had been keeping as a pet.

  21. i once used one of those plastic “Brute” garbage cans to beat a guy in a fight

    not as effective as i had hoped, but i made it work

  22. I keep a Hanwei Ninjato next to the bed, sharp enough to cut paper. I think it might even win if the intruder had a gun, just because of the surprise factor.

  23. I'm not taking chances with my newest delivery.

    I carry 'ghetto visine'* and a Glock 10mm.
    If I get jumped at midnight on MLK and Franklin, I can't put my life in the hands of luck. 🙁


  24. In middle school I lived with my psychotic cousin for 6 months, and got in the only real, all-out fights I ever got in.
    Once he finished me with a crutch to the back (it was just laying around nearby).
    Once he gave me a forehead goose egg with a projectile Barbie doll. I did not care to explain to my classmates where the lump/bruise came from.

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