Look, I want to make this perfectly clear: the whole dust-up with the FCC was clearly not my fault. Really. At all.

Ever been stupid enough to not run away when a friend or acquaintance known to dabble in 'art' comes up to you with the holy light of creation in their eyes and fixates on you? Yeah. Like that.

End up in:

Purple plastic pants of prurient peeking penis pushup, sporting a giant blaster while prancing properly around the petite patrol ship set (built in said friend and fellow student's single-rez dorm room) and trying manfully to ignore the camera wedged awkwardly into the doorframe, snatches of the hallway and curious neighbors peering around the vapid glass orifice of television sacrifice.

No, that didn't get us in trouble with the FCC.

Even the FCC has some sort of leeway for student television, I think. Maybe the FCC censors assigned to watch these things get good and holy baked first, and enjoy the show on some unknown levels of amusement higher than anyone involved, or even anyone doomed to watch the things on campus closed-circuit. It's a possibility. You'd have to have a snickerometer cached in their offices to find out, I don't know.

Heligoland He-men of Interstellar Slam Fame, was the name that I'd held up on a hastily-cut slab of cardboard, written in glue and violently gold glitter. The camera had taken it all in snorting our fetishist self-importance and pompous attempts at social parody without a quiver or a giggle. Red light burning luridly above the blank square of the lens, it tracked silently as the He-men (myself and Paul, said artiste) in said purple plastic pants, expounded and spat chunks of turkey lexicon violations, declaiming our quest for the Princess Helium.

No, I didn't make up that name.

See, the only reason I'd agreed to get involved was to work on the set, which wasn't entirely bad. Futuristic furniture stolen from various offices and galleries about campus adorned a pure-white, egg-worship, 1960s-throwback pod space which contained as few shadows as possible and as many smoothly white curved surfaces as we could fashion, beg, borrow or steal around campus, and somehow, it all worked. It had that ineffable charm of mid-run Doctor Who sets, where anyone who looks at it with a jaundiced eye can clearly identify every single piece of Earthspawned debris - here a pair of white styrofoam packing molds (in true Star Trek style) of ovoid tumescence, bookending our pilot's console. There a roman blind of unknown white plastic material, vicked in the dead of night from the library reading room where it served as a drape beneath the false ceiling tiles. Over to the side a brand new concept office chair looking like an Aeron had fucked a jellyfish on an Intermetro bed, spraypainted white and currently holding the personal mass of our PILOT.

Eliot Stein was the PILOT. He was not sporting purple plastic pants. Rather, as an almost background character, he was dressed in skintight white vinyl, stolen from a neighbor five doors down with a serious plastic fetish. We didn't bother trying to wash the costume but did spend ten minutes trying to guess which of the kinkier co-eds in our dorm it had once contained, sweat skin and fluids stuffed lasciviously into its wetsuit constriction. Eliot didn't seem to have thought of that, or worse, might have realized it and decided it was Exciting capital E, but in any case, he sat, wooden, on the unholy union office chair pretending to guide us through time and space.

The window was covered by a projection screen, and what was on the projection screen was a startlingly nice view of a notional purely holographic command interface, bracketing an astronomy simulation program. I'd thrown the two together to create the base background for a first-person spacepilot shooter I'd never finished coding, so all it could do was fly around a notional universe as commanded and maybe collide with something if you tried really, really hard. For our purposes, that was excellent. I'd warned Eliot not to crash it, because crashing us crashed it which crushed the scene flat (not to mention meant I had to go dig up the stupid wireless keyboard and reinstantiate spacetime).

Paul had gibbered at Eliot to emphasize the no-no-ness of impact, since we were Live. No, LIVE. Or maybe LIVE!!1!. I'm not sure. The feed to campus TV was, he intimated, being picked up by some unknown contact at a local television station and rebroadcast in our current entirely dull (to non-student) hour of 1 AM.

Paul poked me with a rapier covered in acid-yellow marker paint. I stumbled back, riposted with a giant boomerang-shaped thing that we'd knocked together out of hockey sticks. It was black.

"Do you understand, you hideous traitor? That if you won't give me the gun, I'll MAKE YOU?" Paul was spitting a bit as he shouted this gem of a line at me, and I made sure to stabilize the boomerang whatever it was before I replied.

Before it all went wrong.

"I understand, you foul filth, that you'll do your worst. Bah! I defy thee to ply thy foil, once more and again as you shiver at the pass!"

Except what came out, at the end, was "...as you quiver at the ass!"

I have no idea why.

There was a deathly silence for all of two seconds, then Paul, his eyes wide in eloquent panic, sharply thwacked me across the shoulder with the plastic rapier, which promptly popped off the hilt and flew across the room. The blade sank into a round white shape pretending to be a cabinet but was in fact a mid-sized balloon covered in white paint. The balloon didn't burst, but deflated with a squealing, farting noise that I couldn't have bettered with a case of balloons and all night to try.

Out of the corner of my eye, I could see Eliot going even more wooden, tears starting at the corner of his eyes, but he was manfully staring away from the camera.

I tried again, advancing, reaching for the adlib: "And so you fail, pathetic Patrolman!" I bopped Paul on the noggin with the boomerang. The end of it sagged, broke free from the duct tape and fell straight down behind his back. As it passed, he winced; the jagged wood end had grazed him on the way down. That was okay; the wince looked convincing.

But then he turned to dodge behind the console, and his plastic pants had been sliced straight down the back middle. As he danced past Eliot, bare buttocks swaying, Eliot finally lost it. The camera gulped it all in in glee as Eliot simply deflated in laughter and dropped the wireless joystick he'd been playing with in order to stay involved. As I realized what was to happen, I tried to jump for the controls, but too late; the point of view dipped majestically down towards a horizon we had been sailing over, nosed down, and the view went black.

Then the full-size, screen-filling animation of a player (who looked a lot like Paul) appeared, vigorously screwing a pooch which looked like an unbelievably enthusiastic Bichon Frise.

Missionary. With tongue.

The FCC called us both the next day.

For Jet-Poop, who asked.

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