The Valley Girl Quota


I sigh, turning on the TV so that my parents will think it’s the news people talking and not me and Ernie. “What happened to your face?”

Ernie touches his black eye, checks the Band-Aid on his forehead. “I had a run-in with some Mexican hoodlums while tracking El Cassetto last night.”

I stand behind him, hands on my hips. “I appreciate that you want to include me in your little playtime activity, but you can’t stay here.”

“I’m not staying here. I just need a partner with whom I can coordinate a strategic search. I’ll be a couple hours, max.”

“Correction: you just want to use my phone because you don’t have one of your own.”

“Bingo was his name-o.”

“Uh-uh. I’ll have no part of your stupid bet against Theo.”

Ernie looks disappointed. “Aw, you never want to do anything together anymore. I’m beginning to feel like you only hang out with me at school to fill some kind of valley girl quota.”

“I’m not a valley girl!” I yell, immediately cupping my hands over my mouth. Whispering, I repeat, “I’m not a valley girl.”

Ernie points at my letterman jacket, which is draped over the back of my desk chair. “You’re on a sports team? You own a Letterman jacket? You’re a valley girl.”

Ugh. It’s like I’m talking to a cream puff with eyes…”

“Hey, I resemble that.”

“Even if I let you stay here—which I’m definitely not—how does that help you find your cassette tape thingie?”

“Online steak-out. Scanning people’s SuperMegaFeeds. If I spot any suspicious activity, I immediately upload and investigate.”

I frown. “But you can only upload to people on your buddy list.”

“That’s why we’ll be blanketing SuperMegaNet with friend requests.”


“Yep. Everyone and their dead grandmother will be on your buddy list. Friends for days. Now, would you prefer I start on your computer until power hour is up, and then switch over to your phone, or should I just skip computer and go directly to phone?”

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El Cassetto: a SuperMegaNet novel by Jesse Gordon

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Jesse Gordon

Geek. Writer. Supreme overlord of the SUPERMEGANET pseudoverse. Author of THE OATMEAL MAN, DOOKIE, and other such wasteful nonsense.