MEPHISTOPHELES BLUNT (Dog Beach) was born, now lives, and will someday die. A tragic accident at age 3 involving Vaseline and a small bicycle pump rendered him incapable of speech. From ages 5 through 22, Blunt attended the prestigious Escuela de los Pies Incontinentos, graduating Summa cum loudly. At 27, the publication of Blunt's essay Dinner Plate Tectonics (based on a four-year graduate study done for Arby's) stunned the physics community. On the 1996 Nobel alternates list for his revolutionary cashew fudge recipe, Blunt currently serves as ambassador to Easter Island for the Thai government. JERZY PLATES (The Big Cool Long Hard Hand) was born near Leipzig in 1944, the son of a Lutheran clergyman. He attended the famous Pforta School, went to university at Bonn and at only twenty-four was appointed to the chair of Classical Philology at Basel University. He is currently at work on the tender story of a young girl's coming of age in rural Winnepeg for Miramax Films. RIFF DIXON (Small Sur) Dixon's pen became his axe when he realized the limited opportunities open to a bop-inflected swing tenor saxophonist. He writes it the way he'd play it. He earned his nickname imagining himself in the late 50's Ellington reed section. He still thinks for pleasure. Whatever his actual activities, his main influence is Paul Gonsalves. PAOLO DIHN (Behind Enemy Lines) fervently believes the connection between writer and reader is an ethereal one that is only harmed by the intrusion of egotistic details of "personality and profile". For this reason he prefers to remain merely a name. Hiding from the limelight comes naturally to him since the tender age of seven when that horrific train accident left him at the mercy of the townschildren who proclaimed him "King of the Toadstool Faces" and pelted him with pennies kneaded into cow's dung, even up to his own door, which his mother, that vitriolic bastion of lower middle class morality, would not open as a lesson in civics. JOE DON WILLIAMS (Bug City) Joe Don's father, a high schoolteacher, once demanded he throw half of his comic books away. Joe Don carefully separated them into two piles, the good and the bad. When he came home from school the next day, Joe Don's father told him he had already thrown his comics in the trash, saving him the trouble. "Which pile?" Joe Don asked. His father had thrown away what would be today several thousand dollars worth of the greatest comics ever printed -- Weird Science , the first Mad , the original Vault of Horror , etc., -- and left Joe Don with his worthless copies of Archie Annual and Little Lulu . In retaliation, Joe Don became a would-be science-fiction writer; or, in something like the words of Kurt Vonnegut, a kid who spent too much time building plastic model airplanes and beating off. POLSKI RHUMBA (WOiMS) was raised in the High Tatras Mountains near Temnosmrecinsk· dolina (The Valley of Dark Firs) where her father took refuge from academic attack and encroaching political pressure to conform to a religion he considered a part of The New Industrialism. Well-known for their special interpretation of the polka and waltz, Polski and her father were allowed to brew beer with the local monks and take part in their special studies on the poisonous daphne, a bush responsible for the deaths of many unsuspecting hikers. Polski believes the most important thing in life is a big bathtub, preferably old and gilded. She has a gold mirror (given to her by Father Smokovic) that hangs at the foot of her bathtub wherein she contemplates the Greatest Mystery of Life: The Body. She spends her time traveling with her cat Toisie between their 3 residences in Rouen, La Pie de la Cuesta, and Pimlico. Toisie has won numerous awards in Rouen for the coveted prize of 'Cat Most Able To Sound Like Joan of Arc's Cat'. ROAN BEECHLER (bLACK pORN) Little is known about Roan beyond the communiqués he posts for our rag. Educated as a mortician, Roan had a severe break from this lifestyle roughly five years ago and has since only come out briefly to send us his stories from a disconnected pay phone adjacent to a Mexican cemetery. He claims to be fifty five. Divorced. Father of twin boys Cecil and Artemis who work as high paid entertainment lawyers for which Roan's work is dedicated. Severely scarred about the face and neck from an embalming fluid explosion, Roan is also missing four fingers on his left hand. He makes money, so he tells us, playing a one handed flamenco guitar in Mexican whorehouses. A devout worshipper of Judaism, Roan has also been linked to the followers of Juan Marco Sanchez the Mad Jew of Istanbul. Those who have actually seen Roan, say he and Juan share an odd resemblance, and are rarely seen together. More than this is unknown. Like so many young girls, BENEITHA TRAYNE (Thirst) once dreamed of a glamorous and exotic career as a Balinese firewalker. But alas! Twas not to be. Coming home one night from the mall after a long day of wrapping acrylic sheets around matronly fingernails, Beneitha was captured by a crew of Danish seamen and locked in a small closet next to the ships engine room. She remembers, dimly, that outside the sky is sometimes blue and that flying creatures called birds make lovely noises in the spring. When not entertaining gentlemen callers in groups of two and three, Beneitha keeps her spirits high by scribbling notes on the walls with the back of an earring, mostly political commentary and random free verse. STEVE STILSON (Ale-ien) was found under a rock in an abandoned sprout mine in the north of the U.K. Drifting to different foster parents every week, he eventually settled in with a family of midgets who toured the country with their amazing dancing ferret show. He finished school, and started his working life writing scripts for scandinavian porn movies. His career has included many jobs including, Spaghetti farmer and World famous hypnotist. He is now 104 years old, and accredits his long life to eating beans and unnatural acts with woodland creatures.JESUS ELVIS (Tootsie's Nose) has someone else's eyes, but you'd never notice unless you look closely. There's fake foliage here on his ward of course, as there has been on every psyche ward where he's resided. But the fake foliage, the plastic leaves, the silk flowers are indented with teeth marks! Frayed at the edges and shit. If you read his story and like it, that will make him feel better. But his teeth won't be as shiny. HOMER SNOPES, (Sardonicus) son of an Idaho dirt-farmer and author of "Mr. Sardonicus," came to Las Vegas in 1958 to become lead male dancer in the stage extravagenza Lido de Paris. Rejected on sight because of his enormous size, Homer turned to a life of petty crime, likely his true calling. Narrowly defeated in his bid for governorship in '82, Homer retired to Beatty, Nevada, where he currently owns the most prosperous worm farm in the Southwest. At age 87, Homer hopes to become a writer of worth some day.