Faster than a speedy spine operation

Editor Jimmy Boegle is re-thinking his entire career after agreeing to let Mike Price be the subject of an interview conducted by someone who, Price assured Boegle, was a “really famous reporter.”

CLARK KENT: Why haven’t you been writing your column?

PRICE: Had a spine operation.

I need more details.

You also need a better disguise. That lousy pair of horn-rimmed glasses …

What sort of spine operation?

They called it a “lumbar decompression.” So now, about this X-ray vision stuff. Could you, like, tell a “push-up” from a “lift-and-separate"?

That’s not … well, is your recovery painful?

Hell, yes. I’m not a “Man of Steel,” like some people.

Please, Mr. Price …

Call me Mike. I’ll call you Clark, OK?

Well, yes, I guess it wouldn’t …

All right. Clark. Clarkie. Clarkman. The Clarkster. Clarkaroony …

OK, hold it right there.

Can’t. I’m on a roll. Clarkzilla …


Whoa. Chill out, Your Clarkship. Aren’t you supposed to be the “mild-mannered” reporter?

Yes, but sometimes, goshdangit …

What’s this? A potty-mouthed superhero?

I’m not … I mean, I didn’t …

Will you please get on with the interview?

I’m told that this was your first operation ever. Were you scared?

Not until I saw the nurses were sterilizing bolt-cutters.

Are you sure that’s what they were doing?

Sort of. Drugs were involved. I also saw Pat Buchanan slow-dancing with Barbra Streisand.

That’s ridiculous.

I know. Neither one of ’em can dip worth a damn.

How long were you hospitalized?

One night at St. Mary’s, then the day after the operation, they checked my vital signs, gave me a lube job and shipped me off to HealthSouth, which is just east of Washoe Med. See that? Three hospitals in one sentence.


Medical rehabilitation hospital. I was there for a week of 24-hour supervision and rehab, and believe me, mon Clarkburger, it was a columnist’s nightmare.


Are you kidding? The joint was immaculate, the staff was caring and efficient, the food was delicious and the therapists were awesome. There was nothing to bitch about. Nothing. What the hell kind of a place is that for a columnist? Listen, do me a favor. Take a peek through the wall over there. Tell me if the lady next door is wearing any …

You’re incorrigible.

And you’re indestructible. Hey, we could go on the road. I open, do about 20 minutes, then you Leap Over Tall Buildings With a Single Bound, then David Lorayne and Adam Stone each do their acts, then we close with a big, flashy musical production num …

Let’s get back to reality, shall we?

Reality? You want reality? OK, what happens to your street clothes after you slip into the blue spandex number? You stash ’em in the phone booth? Got secret pockets in the cape? What happens to those goofy wing-tip shoes, like you’re wearing now? Is Perry White a closet Limbaugh listener? Will Jimmy Olsen, the copy boy, ever change his shirt? What kind of high do you get from Kryptonite? Does Lois Lane have big …?

That’s enough of your smut-talk, Mister.

No, it isn’t.

Never mind, I’ve got to get going. Police Commissioner Gordon just flashed a copyright-protected logo in the sky, secretly signaling that my help is needed to fight crime in Gotham City.

Relax. That one’s for Batman.

I know. I’m covering for him this weekend.

Ciao, Clarkarino.