Argus Argot

June 1992

By Greg Raven

Bill Madsen held on unspecified charges

Police and local church officials are expressing puzzlement in the case of ad salesman Bill Madsen. In spite of nearly two or three calls from concerned Argus employees, the Santa Monica police department and the local Baptist diocese refuse to release any information not already contained in their terse joint press release of last Wednesday that states merely that Madsen “continues to be held but is under no suspicion.” Right.

The drama all began on Tuesday after someone noticed that Madsen had not been in to work in a little over a month. Backtracking, it was then learned that on his last day at the office he had apparently irrevocably lost the Duke of Madness Mufflers account and all future revenues for the one-half inch display ad they have run in European Car Magazine since way back in May of 1992. Duke of Madness Mufflers has been turned over to a collection agency, according to Argus arm-breaker Mindy Rodriguez.

Polaroid photographs taken inside the office that day at an office birthday party celebration by crack lens-person Martha Doyle clearly show Madsen wearing an acrylic sweater and a wool tie. If, as is his custom when depressed, he returned home to pet his favorite cat, it is possible that a static charge of sufficient size may have been created to temporarily bind Madsen to the chrome pieces on his Jeep.

Greg Brown key figure in drug investigation

Sheriff’s narcotic team specialists in conjunction with top chemists from E. E. Lily have warned residents of the tri-state area to be on the look-out for Argus editor Greg Brown, aka Hideo Gump, aka Gumby Wingnut, aka Bwana Sprangmeier.

Through an anonymous accomplice Brown, who has gone in hiding — possibly at his home at 2625 North Mile O’Cars Road, Emphysema, California, 90023-0187 — has issued the following statement: “I, Greg Brown, VC, DSO, MC, VD, BS, LSD, SOB, Conqueror of the British Empire in Africa in general and Uganda in particular, am completely blameless, no matter what has happened. My friends, who know me as His Excellency President for Life Field Marshall Al Hadji Brown, can attest that I am still worth my weight in flies.”

So far the only substantive information that has come to light in this unusual case is that Brown was once briefly jailed for dumping untreated tap water into the city sewage system without a license.

Although details are sketchy due to the tremendous impact on the public safety an announcement of any factual nature might have on the populace, it has been variously reported that Brown is being sought either because they want to bottle and sell him as a drug, or because he has the only bottle of aspirin in the office. The search continues.

Don Werner considers sex change

In a revelation that stunned industry insiders, the BPA this week revealed that nearly every magazine in the Petersen Group fold had doubled and in one case tripled its circulation since the last auditing period (the lone exception was Car Craft Magazine, whose circulation plummeted to what appears to be negative numbers).

Furthermore, unnamed sources high up in the BPA are warning that Petersen’s success is not a one-shot phenomenon. One auditor, who asked not to be identified by name, went so far as to say, “Based on the preliminary figures it looks as if they will double their circulation again next month.”

As might be expected, Petersen’s fish is other publishers’ fancy. Sales of all other magazines, even those that do not compete in any way with the Petersen offerings, have suffered a precipitous drop. Unpredictably, the hardest hit periodicals are the local newspapers, such as the Santa Monica Evening Outrage, the Los Angeles Herald Exaggerator, and the Bueno Loco Toilet. The Toilet, which recently changed to a cheesy tabloid format to coincide with its “I Read It In The Toilet” series of radio and TV ads, is rumored to be contemplating filing for Chapter 11.

Not everyone in the competition is taking this lying down, however. Argus Chairman Don Werner, a veteran of the Circ Wars of the late 60s, is rumored to be looking into the fact that Petersen’s incredible success is linked to a recent spate of trips to Sweden by dozens of the top Petersen personnel. Says Werner, “The old man (Petersen) gave away sex changes as Christmas bonus again, I’ll bet. Only he’s not going to get away with it this time!”