We all watched Michael Phelps win his 8 gold Medals with a sense of pride and admiration. After all, it was truly a redoubtable accomplishment. However, the minute he cashed in his Speedo for a book deal and agreed to host SNL, I could no longer restrain the inner demons of my consciousness. Mainly, if Phelps- with his 34 foot wing span, his gnarled teeth, his stumpy legs, his awkward gait, his protruding ears, his gigantic torso, and his slow unmeasured speech- wasn’t an Olympic swimmer, he’d be relegated to permanently wearing a bike helmet, riding the short bus, and managing the deep fryer at Arby’s. So, what gives? Late one night, an unsightly apparition visited me and he answered my questions. Here is a recount of our conversation: Who’s there? “Judge not, and ye shall not be Judged,” a slurred voice called out from the dark corner of my bedroom. Jesus, is that you?

No, he muttered. King Hamlet? Matrix Oracle? Rev. Wright? “No, no, and no,” he replied. Seemingly frustrated the dark mass shambled to the foot of my bed. Then, in a sudden uncoordinated movement, he revealed himself in the dim light emanating from my Optimus Prime nightlight. “Holy shit,” I exclaimed. “I know you, you’re Corky Thatcher aka Chris Burke from the hit television series, Life Goes On… What the hell are you doing in my apartment? “I’ve come to help explain the anomalous nature of the Supertard to you.” “A Supertard, what’s a Supertard?” Wiping some dribble from the edge of his mouth, he began “A Supertard is a person who has powers like a superhero, but also has the maladies of a “special person.” Michael Phelps is a Supertard.”

“No wonder why he is so successful. And that definitely explains his dimwitted buck-toothed appearance coupled with his uncanny athletic ability,” I surmised. Corky continued, “Phelps isn’t the only one ya know, those CDs on your shelf over there: Inspiration and Hung for the Holidays… “No way, you’re kidding, William Hung is a Supertard- awesome!” “Yes,” he said with crooked smile. “Yea, that definitely makes sense now that I think about it.” Then, we started discussing all the other Supertards in our country: Liza Minnelli, DJ Qualls, Clint Howard, Tori Spelling. Until, his eyes lit up, “You know who else is a Supertard?” And before I could answer, he blurted out: “Sarah Palin!”

“Wow, I guess I could of figured that one out too. After all, she has supernatural vision, a shrill intolerable accent, a lifetime membership to the NRA, and she is the Republican Vice Presidential Nominee. But, to be honest, I’m worried about Palin’s family, it sounds like being a Supertard comes with a lot of responsibility and if she gets elected, will she have time to care for them, especially, little Trig? “Don’t worry about Palin and her family, they’ll be fine. And as far as Trig is concerned, no worries, the U.S. Olympic Swim Team is always looking. “Corky, can you answer me this, is George Bush a Supertard? “No,” he said shaking his head in disappointment, “Bush is just a plain retard.” Then, looking as though he was desperately trying to lick his elbow, he disappeared.

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