Report on my mission to kill baby Hitler

Young Hitler

I piloted my time machine back to 1889 to kill baby Hitler and prevent World War II, as I had been trained to do, but I couldn’t go through with it. He was too cute. Even though I had practiced killing a series of increasingly realistic evil babies—starting with a burrito that would make someone sick if they ate it, and progressing through several dolls that expressed Nazi sympathies to the doll that sprung upward to attack my lips and eyes—my training came to nothing. Baby Hitler smiled too sweetly. I stood over his cradle and thought of the millions dead, but in the end I returned my skewer to its sleeve.

Fortunately, I was still able to complete my mission. Thinking quickly, I set my time machine for 1903, to kill teen Hitler. This I accomplished with relish.

When I arrived at his house in turn-of-the-century Leonding, wearing the clothes our team had painstakingly fashioned to match the style of the late 1880s, teen Hitler called to me from the front stoop, offering directions to a home for pensioners. Seeing that I was annoyed, he apologized and thanked me for my service in the Crimean War. Then he announced to his father that a message had arrived from Otto Von Bismarck. Being engaged in some industry within the house, his father could not hear teen Hitler smarting off from the porch, and so was shouted at to come outside even after he had obviously arrived.

“I’m sorry,” Mr. Hitler said genially. “He’s at a difficult age. Won’t you come in?”

This remark sent teen Hitler into a black study. He scowled at the table as his mother served us lager, black bread, and the most delicious bratwursts I have ever eaten. Say what you will about the woman who raised Adolf Hitler, that bratwurst was great. Teen Hitler only glowered at his, though, breathing heavily through his mouth.

“Aren’t you hungry?” his mother asked. To fill the silence that ensued, Mr. Hitler inquired what brought me to Leonding. For this part of the mission, at least, I was prepared. I launched into the story of my life: a printer’s apprentice, now a journeyman, come to pursue my devotion to the typeset word. This aspect of the mission was one I had particularly enjoyed rehearsing, and I played it with élan. I was just getting to the part about newspapers’ importance to civic order and the kind of print shop where I’d like to work when I was interrupted by a loud belch. Teen Hitler’s father reddened.

“You will treat guests in this house with respect,” he began, but Mrs. Hitler cut him off.

“It caught him by surprise,” she said, laying her hand on teen Hitler’s shoulder and sitting down next to him. “He is only hungry, because he does not eat his bratwurst.” She plucked a bratwurst from his plate and waved it playfully under his nose.

“You’re not funny!” teen Hitler shouted, knocking the bratwurst from his mother’s hand.

“Adolf, please!” she protested. “I was only trying to cheer you.”

I was only trying to cheer you,” teen Hitler repeated in a mocking tone.

I reached across the table and slapped him so hard that his head hit the wall and exploded. That’s how I remember it, anyway. I was so mad. Regardless, I fled the bloodstained kitchen to my time machine, my mission heartily accomplished. It was such a success that I set the controls for a year earlier and killed teen Hitler again, this time during Oktoberfest.

I file this report knowing it will mean nothing to you, and that I will return to a 21st century that never heard of Adolf Hitler. My heroism will go unnoticed—punished, even, as I am sure this report will stain my record of otherwise canny service to a nation that, now, cannot understand my sacrifice. But I assure you, dear reader, it was worth it.



The bar between Wholesale Industrial Adhesives and Frank’s Exotic Birds has had its liquor license revoked, due to mishaps.

Student voting to name the new addition to Westside Middle School is now closed. Graduation is scheduled for Saturday in Bonerfart Auditorium.

The “World’s Best Grandpa” mug awarded at Christmas has been taken back due to the events of New Year’s Eve. It will not be given to the runner-up, due to complicity in the events of New Year’s Eve.

The Valentine’s Day Haunted Hayride and Fireworks Show has been canceled for unrelated reasons of clarity and safety.

The Ninth Annual Great Trail and River Cleanup Festival, billed as a “fun and educational experience for the whole family,” is pretty much a scam.

The Five Valleys Skeet Shooting and Pigeon Breeders’ Association has decided to split into two separate organizations.

Uncle Kooky’s Funtime Family Pizza Palace has been closed due to snakes.

Due to an editing mistake, a previous announcement in this space reported that Charla May Stevens, queen of the Peach Festival and class valedictorian, had become engaged to a “shiftless drifter from parts unknown.” In fact he is from Indianapolis. We regret the error.

Henry B. Lakin, DDS, and Cynthia Lakin are pleased to announce the marriage of their son Todd to Rachel Lakin (née Smith) on May 14th. Rachel is an attorney with a master’s degree in management from the Wharton School, and Todd is a freelance writer with an MFA in poetry from the University of Minnesota. Ronald and Margaret Smith regret the error.

The new soccer field next to the zoo had its grand opening Saturday night.

Sunday morning’s announcement that rare Chinese pandas Lun Lun and Mei Yan had unexpectedly given birth to a new baby panda has been withdrawn.

The zookeeper has been fired.

Meanwhile, in the realm of fantasy

Marco Rubio implements policy in Syria.

Marco Rubio implements US policy in Syria.

Once in a generation, someone invents a story so powerful it rewrites the world. For our generation, that story was the Iraq war, and we will probably watch sequels the rest of our lives: ISIS, proxy war in Syria, ethnic nationalism returns to Europe, Ahmed Goes to Camp(s), et cetera. As made-up stories go, “we invade Iraq and they love us” is Huckleberry Finn, and the rest of us are writing Hardy Boys. Further fictions pale. Yet Kurt Schlichter’s What Defeating ISIS Would Look Like proves that in the field of literature, there is still a lot of work to be done. A taste:

The Americans published daily body counts. This horrified liberals, but delighted the American people, who for too long had had no good news nor any way to measure success.

Now hit that More button and eat the whole meal.

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“‘It’s me,’ someone says. It takes a moment to realize the words came from me.”

Charles Dickens, who would love Wattpad except for the part where he doesn't get paid

Charles Dickens, who would love Wattpad except for the part where he doesn’t get paid

The heading of this post is a quote from After 3, an online novel by Anna Todd serialized on Wattpad. I apologize for my poor scholarship, but I can’t tell if After 3 is the third part of one long novel titled “After” or the second sequel to the original. I’m new to this whole Wattpad thing, which I discovered via this article in the New York Times. It likens Wattpad to the serial fiction that dominated 19th-century literature, particularly in England. Like “The Old Curiosity Shop,” Wattpad novels progress in installments, reaching their readers not long after being written. Unlike “The Old Curiosity Shop,” no one gets paid for writing them. But readers can comment, so net improvement.

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