Opinion » Bill Cope

The Secret Life

of "Make-My-Day" Mitny

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"Freeze, punk! Don't even blink or I'll blow a hole in you big enough to drive a Buick through!" Walter Mitny's voice rumbled like an unmuffled Harley. He held his ivory-handled Webley-Vickers 50.80 strong and true, with both hands. The scruffy, pony-tailed thug at the counter trembled like a pansy, and almost dropped his Saturday Night Special in panic. The other customer--a voluptuous young woman so beautiful she just had to be a Dallas Cowboy cheerleader--was speechless with admiration at such boldness, and even the cowered clerk could say nothing. For a moment, the only sound in the convenience mart was the rhythmic throb of a churning Icee machine--ta-pocketa-pocketa-pocketa--then the craven goon turned his weapon on Mitny. But before he could squeeze the trigger, the intrepid hero fired. Kerblooey! Kerblooey! Kerblooey! Three shots in so tight a pattern you couldn't fit a debit card between the entry wounds. "Oh, thank you, thank you, Mr. Mitny. That's the fourth time he's robbed me today. Bless you and your wonderful, wonderful pistol." The clerk knelt to kiss Walter Mitny's hand. "No problem-o, Apu. That's what a baby like this is for." Mitny wiped the gleaming barrel down before putting it back into its concealed holster. The beautiful woman sighed ...

"Wally Mitny! Did you get me a Mountain Dew like I wanned?" "Hmmm?" hummed Walter, dreamily. The shimmering vision of the adoring cheerleader melted away along with the corpse on the tiled floor, replaced by the face of an impatient clerk and a woman in sweat pants with three kids begging her for grape Fizz-Pops. "Er, no, dear. I forgot." The pony-tailed punk paused on his way out of the store and gave Mitny a twisted smirk. "Well git me one!" the woman in sweat pants insisted.

Outside, in the Buick, Walter waited resignedly while his wife opened the Fizz-Pops for their offspring. Only after she'd plopped herself next to him and taken a swig of her Mountain Dew did he taxi the car onto the runway for take-off.

... "Captain Mitny! We're being hijacked!" The voluptuous stewardess waited, breathlessly, to see how Flight Master Walter Mitny would respond. Calmly, he quipped, "Hijacked, you say?" The co-pilot, Renshaw, froze at the huge 797's controls, cold sweat oozing from his narrow brow. "Yes, Captain," panted the stewardess. "Islamo-fascists have taken over coach and are working their way up to first-class." "We'll just see about that," hissed F. M. Mitny. "Renshaw! Fly the plane! Fly 'er strong and true. I have some Second Amendmenting to do." The stewardess sighed, her exquisite bosom heaving. "Be careful, Captain. They have tweezers." Mitny turned and gave her a faint, fleeting smile. "Then it's a good thing that infernal Brady Bill couldn't take this way from me," he said, as he whipped out his ivory-handled Glockenspiel 99-mm Hero Special and strode resolutely out the cockpit door. As he crept through the pretzel storage compartment, he could feel the twin Pritchard-Mitford turboprop engines throbbing (pocketa-pocketa-pocketa-pocketa), and he could only pray that coward Renshaw would hold the plane steady. Suddenly, he could see them, the miserable curs! Tweezering people into submission, eight ... no, nine of them. "Good thing I brought the 10-round clip," he thought, as he burst through the curtain and opened fire. Kerblooey! Kerblooey! One shot per customer, with one left over for luck. They didn't stand a chance, the curs! Not against ...

"Wally Mitny! You idjut! You just went the wrong way on a one-way street. You idjut! You're gonna git us all killed! You idjut!"

(Author's interlude: Should you be confused about what's going on here ... in the wake of the Virginia Tech shootings, there was and continues to be a hue and cry from gun proponents that the tragedy might have been averted if all the "good guys" were allowed to carry concealed firearms wherever they go. Like many others, I have long suspected these gun people have more issues than a simple loyalty to the Second Amendment lurking about in their psyches--issues I feel are more effectively addressed by satire than the grim statistics. In this fanciful exploration of this peculiar American madness, I have borrowed freely and extensively from the late James Thurber. I don't believe he would mind, but should his estate lawyers get pissy about it, notice please, the central character is "Mitny," not "Mitty.")

"Sorry, dear. I didn't see the arrow." The ample Mrs. Mitny wiped Mountain Dew spume off her hand onto her sweat pants. "I swear, they oughta send you back to driver school, you idjut. Driver school, that's what you need." School ... school ...

"Professor Mitny! Professor Mitny! That quiet weird guy with the pony tail is shooting up the school! We're all going to die!" The voluptuous graduate assistant quivered with fear as she met Dr. Walter Mitny's steady gaze. "Calm yourself, Miss Pritchard, and tell me, how is he armed?" "He has guns, Professor. Guns galore." Mitny rose from his elegant desk and pulled an ivory-handled Magnum P.I. 30-ought-30 from deep within his tasteful trousers. "Does he have a gun like this?" Miss Pritchard swooned, and her legs buckled. "Gracious, no, Professor Mitny. He doesn't have anything nearly as big as that." Mitny checked his chambers, then strode confidently to the door. "Get under my desk, Miss Pritchard, and don't come out until I give you the thumbs up." "Anything you say, Professor," cooed the coed. From far down the hallowed hall, Mitny could hear the pop of semi-automatic gunfire (pocketa-pocketa-pocketa) and thought to himself, "By the sound of it, the punk's using weapons he got in spite of Ted Kennedy." Frantic undergraduates were dashing wildly for the exits, and the professor pushed through them, against the tide, ever deeper into Coreopsis Hall. He knew he was close when he saw the hem of a black trench coat disappear around a corner. "I should go in low," cogitated Mitny. "The old Chuck Norris tuck 'n' roll, that's the ticket. The miserable cur won't see it coming." He gripped his pistol tightly, with both hands--the only kind of gun control he would ever accept--and rushed, a perfectly executed tuck ... then an even better roll. Kerblooey! Kerblooey!

"I suppose they'll insist on giving me yet another medal for this," he mused when it was over. Waiting for the authorities to arrive, he stood over the corpse. Tall, proud and disdainful. Mitny the Merciless, inscrutable as ever.

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