Arch-villain invades Owasso
An odd advertisement popped up in the local paper. It was under the Help Wanted banner looking for people to apply for jobs as "minions." Now, times are tough and all, but who wants to be called a minion? Still, the ad said there was excellent compensation, opportunities for advancement, and a full benefit package. Out of simple curiosity, I called.
"Hello? Who is calling?" The man's voice was high pitched and crackling, with an annoying fake German accent.
"I'm calling about the ad you placed looking for minions," I began. "What exactly does the job entail?"
"I need assistants to help carry out my plan for world domination! First, we will subdue a small town in Oklahoma for use as a....." He started coughing. The voice sounded familiar even with the phony accent, but when he managed to control the coughing, he began again in a normal voice. "Sorry, that was just too hard on my vocal cords. I'm looking for people who want to help me take over the world. I'm the evil Dr. Wally Crankset."
"Wally!" I've known him since we were kids. "Are you out of your mind?" Rather than a mere rhetorical question, the matter of Wally's sanity was a frequent topic of conversation along the bar at Larry's Cafe. Larry said that Wally was "the dumbest smart guy I ever met!" And yet Larry considered him a friend.
"What's the scheme this time?" I despaired of Wally ever trying to accomplish something through hard work, perseverance, and dogged attention to detail. He claimed to be a 'big picture' guy who let others work out the small stuff. Apparently this time it included minions.
Doing his best to sound offended, Wally said, "There's no scheme. I'm really going to take over the world and I'm going to start in a quiet suburban town just outside of Tulsa. It's called Owasso. They don't have a university, so I'll have to find other work. But it's a bigger town than Broken Elbow and that fits into my plan perfectly."
"So there is a plan this time." I was dubious.
"Actually, it's well thought out and I didn't really have a hand in it. There's a group of investors who want to divert attention away from some of their business and real estate developments, so they've hired me as a sort of lightning rod. There was another guy working here who had the same role for quite a while, but a citizen's group finally managed to oust him. I'm his replacement."
He had a point. That small, noisy group had managed to send the city manager packing after years of agitating. It was understandable that investors wouldn't want to be bothered with them, so they hit on the 'evil' Dr. Crankset as a solution. Angry, hostile people are easier to control when they have an enemy to focus on, and when you toss a whopping dose of "stupid" into the mix, control becomes essential.
"I have it all worked out," Wally said. "I'm building a secret laboratory under the new Sams Club. It's perfect for a hidden lair, and I've even launched my first nefarious plot to muddy the waters by muddying the waters in a local neighborhood!" Wally chortled. He actually chortled. It sounded like a chicken gargling a fifth of Jim Beam. Suddenly the prospect of dinner didn't seem so appealing.
You didn't think Wally and I would go away forever, did you?