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Monthly Archives: September 2011

a Pocketwatch

Pocketwatch, written by Miss A

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Millie fingered the cold, smooth surface of the pocketwatch her husband had kept in his right pants pocket every day for fifty-six years. She’d given it to him for his twenty-fifth birthday, only five and a half months after he’d asked her on their first date whether she believed in soul mates.

Two months after she’d given him the pocketwatch, he’d asked her to marry him. They married on the one-year anniversary of their first date, and when the priest asked her if she’d take him for richer or poorer, in sickness or in good health, she smiled and answered yes. Yes, she would take him through the good and the bad, although she hoped for more good.

They had stuck together through the first hard years, struggling to make ends meet until he was promoted and given his own office. A raise that afforded them the house on Beaumont Street where they sat on the hardwood floors the very first night and laughed as they imagined the pitter patter of small feet and a dog barking in the backyard. The puppy had come easily. The children had not. For five years, they’d tried and tried to conceive; and just when it seemed hopeless, she discovered she was three months late.

Matthew had been their pride and joy. The shared object of their affection. And then he grew up, made a family of his own and moved to France to work for a prestigious biotech firm. It was her and her husband again. Growing old together.

But where had the time gone? How quickly had that face on his pocketwatch aged as the years ticked by? How slow had they reversed when the dementia began to take hold of his tired head, muddling the thoughts and memories she’d always believed they would hold together?

And still he had held onto that pocketwatch, remembering to put it in the right pants pocket every day of his life, even when he could no longer recall her face. He held onto the times from long ago, when they were young, when he looked across a room and fell in love with a rosy-cheeked girl who laughed and the moon smiled bright whose laugh made the moon smile bright.

– Written by Miss A on September 24, 2011

Rock band

MOCK AD:

Did you know you can tell the age of a rock, simply by looking at it? Forget about carbon dating…it’s inaccurate and so 19th century. Through a little-known, well-kept secret called rock band dating, the stone masons have been dating rocks very accurately for generations and generations. Now, for no apparent reason, I will bestow this marvelous dating technique on you for FREE! Unfortunately, the rock band method does involve some mathematics. But not to worry! If you buy the rock dating kit for only $19.95, we take care of the math for you. Each rock dating kit comes with two test rocks (dates) to get you started. One of the rocks is oblong and one is shaped like a doughnut. This kit will have you dating rocks in no time!

– Written by Mr. T on August 3, 2011

Lucky streak

“For three days only, you, too can purchase your very own lucky streak while supplies last!” the man in the suit in the little, black tube shouted as he looked me straight in the eye.

“Come on down to Wiley Bill’s Discount Store and get yours before they’re all sold out!”

I was sold. My very own lucky streak? For a cheap price? I was there! Grabbing my car keys, I hustled out the door and drove to the store to see a man about buying myself a lucky streak.

Outside Wiley Bill’s a long line of people just like myself – down on their luck and in search of cheap hope – was forming all the way down the block. Panicked I might miss my chance to buy new luck, I hurried to park my car and join the crowd.

There was Mrs. Johnson, whose husband died two weeks ago and left her with a hefty mortgage and empty bank account. There was Mr. Samuels, whose fifteen-year-old daughter got knocked up last year and skipped town as soon as the baby girl was born. And Joe McDonnell with the rotting teeth because he couldn’t afford to pay $60 for a teeth cleaning at Dr. Beckett’s office down the street. Sure does pay to be the only dentist in a small town.

I passed by Homeless Mac, who stunk like hell but the people around him paid him no mind because they wanted their very own luck streak so bad. Miss Judy, near the front of the crowd, winked and waved my way when I found my spot at the end of the line. Her little buy Duey stuck out his tongue at me.

The line moved slowly as we all waited our turn and enviously watched the fortunate souls who ambled from the store with their plastic bags clutched to their chests, holding their new luck streaks close so their hearts in case some eager bystander tried to snatch it away.

Some of us got nervous, started tapping our feet. What if we got close to the front and Wiley Bill came outside in his slick, plaid suit and said, “Sorry folks! We’re all sold out!” Well, that just wouldn’t do. We all needed our lucky streaks, especially with times so tough.

“I say we rush the store and grab what we can!” Joe McDonnell yelled like a banshee in heat. “Who’s with me?”

The crowd raised their hands and roared, and in a second flat, I felt the wall of bodies behind me forcing me toward the front door. Faster. Angrier. More desperate than before they knew about lucky streaks on sale at Wiley Bill’s store.

And poor Wiley Bill could do nothing to stop the looting that ensued in his store when the townspeople raided it for luck. Because when you’ve got luck for sale at the right price, there’s no stopping the people who think they need it more than the rest.

– Written by Miss A on September 19, 2011

 

Cage

While the kookaburras wailed behind us, the black cockatoo sat perched on its branch and spoke not a sound, instead cocking its head and peering at us with glassy black marble eyes.

And who might you be? his expression seemed to say.

Curious myself, I tilted my head like his and observed as he noticed me mimicking his expression. He blinked, and so did I, which sparked his interest. Reaching his foot down the branch, he grasped with his toes and inched his body toward where I stood, motionless and staring back at him. Something had sparked his interest in me. Perhaps it was the calm gaze, the soft face, or the small smile at the corners of my thin mouth.

Hello, I greeted him when he’d toed the branch to face opposite me, again cocking his head to the side as if wondering who was this pale girl with the tired green eyes and half-amused grin.

Flustered, he extended his wings and flushed out the black and red crest atop his shiny, ebony head, puffing up his chest and ruffling his feathers.

My friends and I laughed at his animal behavior, humored by the pompous mohawk sticking straight in the air and those glassy eyes passionately engaged in my curious stare.

His intense look lessened. With doe eyes, he sought my affections, which amused me more. When I took two steps to the left, he promptly hopped to the next branch that brought him closer to me. Desperate to keep my attention, he scurried to the far end of his perch, and with his beak, he snapped a leafy twig in two. Inching his way back to where I still stood enamored with this determined suitor, he held the long twig in his mouth and gently offered it my way.

But the cold steel bars, which netted his cage, blocked the gift, not matter how many times he tried to push it through. Frustrated, he again broke the twig in two, shaving off loose ends which might get stuck against the cage, and with his beak, he offered the twig once more. Again, the metal gray cage barred the twig from breaking free into the free end of the world where I could walk away at any time.

Which eventually I had to do. There were many other animals to visit, you see. Koalas and wombats and kangaroos.

As I turned to walk away, the black cockatoo climbed onto the metal bars, his gnarled black feet grasping at the cold steel, and gripping them with his beak, he tried to follow me from his side of the world. The world where he was entrapped in a cage.

– Written by Miss A on September 18, 2011

a Rug

Some people call it a magic carpet, but I don’t. There’s no such thing as magic. This is a flying rug, and without a doubt the best one in production today. The Baby-Baba Model 7RS.

With a top-lateral speed of 250 kmph, the Baby-Baba 7RS literally leaves all other flying rugs in the dust. This is of course due to its super lightweight build and dual micro-jet engines. While these specs are quite impressive, what makes Baby-Baba brand flying rugs truly remarkable is their operating system and user interface. Their slogan, “so easy a baby can drive it,” is true in every word. All of their products are made specifically for babies and the 7RS is no exception. Baby-Baba’s Baby Brain Drive Train uses a dual process design. One processor mimics a baby’s brain and the other is strictly logical. Together they are able to correctly predict the seemingly unpredictable nature of a baby’s mind. As the logical processor is given priority, when the baby decides to make an illogical maneuver, the device will simply deliver a gently electric shock to the baby and continue on its path. Some have nicknamed this system “Darwin Drive” as about 2% of the babies used in testing wouldn’t get with the program and actually shocked themselves to death. Don’t be alarmed, none of the dead babies were American. Thanks to recent trade agreements, most of the babies used in present-day testing are Asian brand because they’re indisputably more intelligent. Of course, not every baby is a smart baby, which is the primary cause of the 2% failure rate. Trust us, most babies are 100% safe to drive the 7RS. Although Baby-Baba doesn’t recommend it, the 7RS will carry a ¬†adult at a maximum speed of 100 kmph. However, the mind of an adult is typically too logical to properly drive the 7RS. Baby-Baba is supposedly considering releasing an adult version of their flying rug, but no official statement has been released as of yet.

CONCLUSION: The Baby-Baba 7RS is a truly remarkable flying rug and is absolutely the safest and fastest model available for babies and children under 12.

PROS: 250 kmph top speed. New dual micro-jet engines. Baby Brain Drive Train (patent pending).

CONS: Not safe for adults. Tested on babies. 2% failure rate (nicknamed Darwin Drive).

MSRP: $249,999.99

Price as tested: $225,000.00

– Written by Mr T. on September 14, 2011

Glue

In between the canvas and paper pieces, I stroke the brush whose tip is soaked with glue. Pushing it against the paper, I force weighted strokes to flatten the pulpy bits of color to their new foundation – the one I build in the House of Art.

Dipping the brush’s tip into the plastic tub, it emerges with the white, sticky goo which is my paint, my adhesive medium which connects me to my soul. Where all the pieces fell apart and shattered with the pristine glass walls of our home cracked and caved, I now try to put them back together again. With glue. It clears as it dries, erasing the haze which blurs my vision of the past, present, or future. And when it clears, I see the creation I couldn’t understand or fathom until everything was laid in its rightful place.

There it is. The purpose. The reasons for the frazzled madness, the racing mind, and frustrated sighs while I wonder where all this is going, why this is happening. As I stumble along, wishing for the easier path, I fail to see the steps leading me toward the bigger picture, the one in which I realize and understand the beauty of a struggle after it has been overcome.

It is the glue which keeps me going, connecting me to the strands of thought and feeling aimlessly wandering and floating through the labyrinth of an overactive mind, and underwhelmed life, a want for something more.

The glue builds my unconscious vision. Attaches me to the present, focusing on the careful, ill-reasoned placement where lines and circles and waves intersect and divide, combine and unite. Nothing makes sense until the end. Then the spontaneous actions seem worth it.

After the labor, the hypnotic state where I simply exist in the moments as they occur, a part of me is pieced whole again. While I stand at a distance, gazing at the work that has unfolded into a physical something, and peeling the dried glue from my fingers and nails like a lizard shedding its skin, I am reborn.

– Written by Miss A on September 4, 2011

Reflections

This is a post that was submitted to us yesterday by Jack, with this note about his entry…

“Challenging myself to reflect and write about not only my memories, but the cities that they happened in…now I have a list of significant cities & towns within my life’s history, thanks to this book pulling it out of me…’Reflection.'”

Reflections - submitted by Jack on September 11, 2011