Thursday, February 08, 2007


By Karl P. Gruber

For as long as anyone could remember, the Sixth-Avenue Insane Thugs had been the most feared gang in the city ― more terrifying than the Northeast Hustlers, more vicious than the Fancy Cats. Even the dreaded Los Hippopotamuses Locos were no match for them.

As they grew into middle-age, the Sixth-Avenue Insane Thugs continued to rule the streets with brutal efficiency. But then one day, a new enemy invaded their turf, one that couldn’t be beaten with fists and knives. That enemy was persistent urinary urgency.

Once word got out that the Sixth-Avenue Insane Thugs could only hold it in for a few minutes at a time, the other gangs began challenging them to rumbles where there were no public restrooms or tall bushes nearby. And suddenly, the Sixth-Avenue Insane Thugs didn’t seem so tough.

That's when they decided to consult their physician, and he told them about STREAMINEX. Just one little pill, he explained, could help the gang control frequent urination for up to 24 hours.

Now the Sixth-Avenue Insane Thugs are back in action! Sure, the gang occasionally experiences side effects like dizziness, nausea, inflammation of the toes and mild sexual dysfunction, but no one ever said life on the streets was easy.

(Author Karl P. Gruber recently won the Pfizer Prize for short fiction. He lives in suburban Cleveland and likes warm, fruit-filled pies.)


sam wilson said...

the sixth-avenue insane thugs, man, those motherfuckers copyrighted pain. i, as well, have ground up and snorted a cornucopia of chewable tablets in my day, though none of which actually stopped things from coming out of my body. quite the contrary actually.

Karl Gruber said...

Dear Mr. Wilson,

Thank you for your personal reflections. Coincidentally, my next story is tentatively titled "The Laxative Posse Rides Again."

wilson said...

i await it, sir, with baited breath and clenched bowels.

Anonymous said...

I understand, that before she became a famous singer, Urethra Franklin ran with the incontinent Sixth-Avenue Insane Thugs.