The scuttlebutt around Think-A-Holic Lounge these days is why SciFiFoFum, the video-making alter ego of science fiction author Michael Casher, pulled his own plug at YouTube. Being as nosy as any other alter ego, I asked Angus McCloud, the bigass head bartender at the Lounge, what he thought of the sudden disappearance of yet another side of this controversial, little known author from planet Earth. It was a Wednesday afternoon, my favorite time of day at Think-A-Holic Lounge, and I knew the old ghost of a long-dead Scottish poet liked to wag his chin about authors.
"Beats me, Jonco," Angus replied as he plopped my single shot of think-a-hol and a bubbly chaser draft down in front of me. "I never really knew they guy, y'now. Hell, he never showed his face around here."
"Unh hunh," I grunted back, lifting the shot glass toward my lips. I knew damn well that Michael Casher, being a real flesh-and-blood human being, couldn't even find Think-A-Holic Lounge which occupies no physical space in the universe and therefore has no position in the space-time continuum. Still, I knew that independent authors were an odd lot and had their own way of coming and going. When you least expected to see one, there he or she would be. In your face with another book. And, in this case, another stupid little video.
"I hear people were posting his videos on all kinds of inappropriate websites, just for the hell of it," Angus suggested, moving quickly to the end of the bar to pour another drink for one of the regular Lounge lizards.
"Oh, really?" I said with feigned indifference.
"Yeah, that's what he claims," said Angus, coming back and taking up a sentry position in front of me. He scanned the Lounge like he half expected Michael Casher to pop in out of thin air at any moment. He leaned forward and talked out the corner of his mouth, as people often do in dimly lit taverns all across the galaxy. "But you know what I think?"
"No," I said, tossing down the think-a-hol and feeling the burn. "What?"
"I think the ol' guy was so embarrassed by the videos he made that he just up and left the social scene altogether." Angus straightened up and squinted into the smoky crowd. "Yep, I think SciFiFoFum is hiding and that he may never come out again."
"I'll drink to that," I blurted out, rather curiously, surprising not only Angus but myself with the sudden outburst. "Let me have another shot of the ol' elixir. And make this one a double."