Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Bathroom Monologue: Possible Origins for Him. 3.

There is an audio version of today's monologue. To hear John Wiswell read "Possible Origins for Him. 3." either click this text to download it or click on the triangle to begin streaming audio.

So you want to know who I really am. Everybody does. But I’ll let you in on it, and just you. Ever heard of a guy named "Elvis Presley?"

I know what you're saying. "Not another theory about how the Joker is Elvis!"

Sorry. It's all true. The charisma. The fabulous taste in wardrobe. Before I appointed myself court jester, I was The King.

At first getting crowds to go wild was enough, but eventually a guy tires of shaking his hips. Less of a slap and more of tickle man, I was. Nobody really got me, so I ate. Out of boredom, depression, a cadaver – you know, what you do when you have too much money and not enough friends. I was under the influence – twenty peanut-butter-cheeseburgers a day, not an illegal substance at the time – when a tour manager said I had to turn it around and mentioned this radical weight loss surgery. I figured, what the Hell? I’m barely conscious anyway!

Turns out a heavy guy who loses all that fat is left with a lot of spare tissue, and they tried to trim me up. It also turns out that back-alley plastic surgery in the 1970’s was not the most efficient or sanitary affair. The blood loss destroyed my complexion and my smile was irrevocably altered.

When I saw what the doctors had done to me, well. I ain't nothing but a hound dog.

Throttling my third medical attendee, I realized this was what I’d been missing. Not just making them squeal from the stage, but getting down there and laying on some hands. The transition into a new life wasn’t hard; half my impostors looked more like me than I did, and the screams of my new audience were so much more interesting. Let me tell you, singing Jail House Rock in Arkham Asylum is an experience to die for. Or at least get maimed on an operation table for.

This sort of thing's not that unusual, really. One of the Robins used to be James Dean. Get me a cheeseburger and a crowbar, and I'll tell you which.


  1. Two things first: 1.) My father was a race car driver. 2.) Peanut butter cheeseburgers are indeed delicious.

    Holy King of Rock n' Roll Batman! I listened to the "audiobook" version and it was totally awesome! You've got a good handle on Mr. J's rhythms and his stream of consciousness. :)

  2. Dear John, the audio version of the monologue was much more entertaining than the written. Please do all future posts accompanied by audio. Thanks, Alan.
    PS. I did not know that James Dean used to be one of the Robins.

  3. eating out of a cadaver! awesome and awesome read, the best. imposters look more like me..just awesome.

  4. Woo hoo! Your performance is so fun to listen to. I love this series, John.

  5. Great reading! I would love to see more audio in the future as well.

  6. Alan and Ellecee, I have recorded audio for several posts before. You can listen to earlier ones by clicking the Audio tab. I plan to use recordings for at least one more post in the next two weeks. If people really enjoy them, though, I'll try to make them even more frequent.

    Thanks for all the kind words. That Joker voice was heck on my throat!

  7. This ruled, John. Inventive and a really great read...

    ... btw, this was my favorite book and record as a kid. The Joker sounds awfully like YOU...


  8. While I wasn't alive when that was recorded, there's no real proof it isn't me...

  9. It's getting creepier and more disturbing, but you have such a consistent voice operating.
    Adam B @revhappiness

  10. Okay, now I'm seeing the world through Dave Mckean fractured glasses I gotta admit you're my kinda writer. Loving this!


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