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Friday, November 5, 2021

“Getting Performance Up to Par” • by Gustavo Bondoni


The professor stared at the new head of the dig with grave concern. But it was the steam shovel that really worried him.

“I can’t believe you were digging with picks and toothbrushes,” Johnson, former Undersecretary of Sanitation, said. “It’s a good thing I got here before the President found out. You would all have been fired.”

“Look,” Professor Hemmings said. “You can’t just use…”

Johnson held up a hand. “Of course not. There’s more than steam shovels in this world. Explosives are the way to go. You’re about to have a better career than you ever dreamed of.”

“No! Wait!”

A powerful explosion shook the ground. Dirt, rocks, and pulverized shards of pottery and bone rained down around them.

Johnson winked. “You’re welcome.”

¤      ¤      ¤

Gustavo Bondoni is novelist and short story writer with over three hundred stories published in fifteen countries, in seven languages.  He is a member of Codex and an Active Member of SFWA. His latest novel is Test Site Horror (2020). He has also published two other monster books: Ice Station: Death (2019) and Jungle Lab Terror (2020), three science fiction novels: Incursion (2017), Outside (2017) and Siege (2016) and an ebook novella entitled Branch. His short fiction is collected in Pale Reflection (2020), Off the Beaten Path (2019) Tenth Orbit and Other Faraway Places (2010) and Virtuoso and Other Stories (2011).
In 2019, Gustavo was awarded second place in the Jim Baen Memorial Contest and in 2018 he received a Judges Commendation (and second place) in The James White Award. He was also a 2019 finalist in the Writers of the Future Contest.
His website is at


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