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by Eric Miller

Her name was Cougar Lugar, and she was a dental recruiter for Gusher Oil. She handed her business card to Dr. Chip Redstone as he stood at her booth at the dental convention. He smiled as he read “We suck, but only for oil, all over the world.”

“What do you think?,” Cougar cooed.

“About what?," Chip chirped, cluelessly.

“Adventure, exotic places, an experience of a lifetime.”

“Gee, we haven’t even formally introduced ourselves. I really think it’s way too soon for me to accept an invitation to your apartment.”

“Oh, what I’m talking about is way better than my place.”

“Well, then, tell me more. Better than your place must be very special.”

“Oh, it is. It’s a faraway place where oil flows like silver dollars spilling out of a slot machine.”

“What kind of oil are we talking about?”

“Black gold,” she said, with a seriously, seductive growl.”

“Black gold doesn’t do anything for me.”

“But there’s a lot of golden gold associated with it.”

“Exactly where is this faraway place?”


“God bless you.”

“Why did you say that?”

“Because you sneezed.”

“No, I just said Hahakabia.”


“Stop! I’m not sneezing. I’m saying the name of a country in the Mid-East.”

“Oh, well then, I must state for the record, that I think your place would be a far, far better place than I have ever been before.”

“Doctor, you are not taking me seriously.”

“Au contraire, I am probably taking you way too seriously for my own good.”

“What do you mean by that?”

“Nothing more than gushing testosterone.”

“Well, suit yourself. You’re missing a great opportunity.”

“In Hahakabia?”


“Okay. Tell me about the bistros, brasseries, cabarets, tapas bars, cinemas, and theater there.”

“They are all culturally authentic.”

“Authentic to what culture?”


“That’s what I was afraid of.”

“There’s nothing to be afraid of. We have an excellent corporate security force.”

“The fact that you need and have one is not reassuring.”

“You’re a very hard sell, Doctor. You need to lighten up.”

So, exactly where is Hahakabia?”

“It’s sort of in the center of a triangle made by Kakamania, Barbarastan, and Plaja.”

“You mean it’s in the middle of nowhere.”

“No, it’s somewhere.”

“Have you ever been there, yourself?”

“No, the company won‘t let me go there by myself. I have to be accompanied.”

“If I agree to go, will you go with me.”

“Oh no. I couldn’t go to a place like that.”

“But I could.”

“Certainly. We want you, very much, to go there.”

“Is it something I said?”

“Did you say something I missed?”

“Yes, pretty much everything.”

“So, will you, or won’t you go?”

“Ha, ha. You’re joking, aren’t you.”

“How could I be joking. I am a recruiter. It’s my job to get you interested.”

“Oh, you’ve gotten me interested, very interested. There is no doubt about that.”

“So, you’ll go then?”

“Only to dinner, here, tonight.”

“Stupid me. I really thought I had won you over.”