Tag Archives: mid-week flash

The Book of Time

A man built a house on a plot of land. He lived through good and bad and when he died, his house stood empty. People soon forgot him, but the house remembered.

It remembered his first night there, when he woke, alone, in the middle of the night and almost cried from loneliness. It remembered the joy of his wedding, the trials and worries, the accumulated pain and blood of scraped knees and new babies. The faces that came, and changed, and passed on through its rooms, it remembered.

The house was sold, and sold again, and then finally abandoned, until its windows were empty and vacant and its roof settled slowly into the floor. The years passed until the house was gone but its memories passed to the land. Even when that was built over and paved and excavated for basements and sewers, the land remembered the stories of those that had lived on it.

It remembered until the land sank into the oceans and water covered the area where the man had built his house and lived through good and bad. Its history was eventually forgotten by everyone, but it still remains, written forever in the book of time that only One can read.


Green Man Walking

Call me Mr. Green. I think of myself as an active, positive sort of fellow. A lot better than the stern Mr. Red. I don’t come out as much as him, but I make the most of my time.

“Come on, everybody. Let’s get walking!” I shout. “It’s okay, no one’s going to hurt you.” After a while, I stay to wave, faster and faster. “You can do it! Time’s almost up. Don’t stop now!” I like to be encouraging.

Then, just like that, I’m gone and Mr. Red is standing there, stern and forbidding.

“Don’t walk,” he growls. “It’s the cars’ turn now.”

 

 


If You Could Live Anywhere

“If you could live anywhere, where would you live?” Allison asked.

Jordan thought for a moment. “I’d live on the Hubble Telescope.”

“You can’t live there. There’s no air or place to sleep.”

“It’s a hypothetical question, right?” Jordan said. “So any answer is allowed.”

“Fine, why would you want to live there?” Allison asked.

“Who wouldn’t want to live there? You could turn away from the Earth with all its ugly problems and gaze out forever onto the vast expanse of the universe. Instead of worrying about war and poverty and finding the right person to marry, I could look out forever on God’s grand creation and fill my soul with beauty.”

“Wouldn’t you be lonely?”

“You could visit sometimes, if you want. So, where would you live?”

Allison shrugged. “I don’t know now. I was going to say the tree house.”

 

(So…if you could live anywhere, where would you live?)

 

 


Travelers Beware

“Hey there, which way you going?” The woman leaned casually against the side of Leonard’s car, as if she didn’t care what the answer was. She had come over to him as he was about to pull out of the gas station and he had, against his better judgment, rolled down the window for her.

“I’m heading to Pensacola,” he said, after a moment. Then, because it seemed expected of him, “Do you want a ride?”

“I’m not going that far, but maybe you could take me up the road a ways, just to the next truck stop. I really appreciate it.” She gave him a hungry smile, opened the door and got in.

This scene was caught on the gas station surveillance camera. Neither Leonard nor the woman were ever seen again. Leonard’s car was discovered three days later outside of Portland, Oregon, 2400 miles away from where it had been last seen. The doors were locked and the driver’s seat was severely burned, although no other damage was evident. No human remains were ever recovered.

When the car’s GPS showed that the car had driven the entire way without stopping once, the investigators closed the case as quickly and quietly as possible.


Rice Pilaf Surprise

I went into my favorite restaurant and saw that there was a new item on the menu: Rice Pilaf Surprise. I’m not really a fan of rice pilaf normally, but the “surprise” part intrigued me. So I ordered it.

I was halfway through when I discovered a twenty-dollar bill buried in the rice. I’ll admit,  it was a surprise. Not that I was complaining—the pilaf cost $3.50. I didn’t eat the rest though. After all, money is dirty. What I did do was order another one.

In the next one, I found a five-dollar bill and a bunch of quarters. In the next, there was nothing but two Lincoln Logs and a Lego pirate figure, but in the next one was a gold necklace that had to be worth something.

“You’ve got quite an appetite today,” the waitress remarked, as I ordered my fifth Rice Pilaf Surprise. She pointedly ignored the pile of plates filled with untouched food.

“I sure do,” I said. “Three more Rice Pilaf Surprises, please.”

All in all, that night I got $37.15, a gold necklace, the Lincoln Logs and Lego pirate, three pieces of wire and an old cell phone. All I had to do was buy ten Rice Pilaf Surprises.

Since then I go back every day, usually ordering 10 to 12 at a time. For the last week, it’s been mostly dead rats, shreds of newspaper and some old car parts. Still, I’m not worried.

 I feel a hot streak coming on.


Inside a Social Raindrop

(This story is dedicated to my wife Leah, whose birthday is today.)

Aqua-biologists have determined that the smallest sentient particle of water is the droplet. Droplets are much smaller than we think and are very resilient through all states of matter. They are also very friendly.

I can just see them up there on a cloudy day, bonding together into bigger and bigger drops.

“Just a bit more,” they yell. “Just a few more for critical mass.”

“Hey, didn’t I see you in the Danube?” one droplet asks another.

“Yeah, back in the day. I’ve been hanging around in the upper atmosphere for a while now though. You?”

“Africa. I spend some time in an elephant.”

“Hey, I was snow,” another says and all the other droplets ooh and aah. Being part of a snowflake is incredibly fun.

“Are you guys going down?” a few droplets cry as they whirl by in an air current. Water droplets have such corny senses of humor.

“We sure are. Grab on,” the others shout, laughing.

More droplets pile on. “Three, two, one, and here we go!” they all shout as they all feel that delicious brink-of-the-rollercoaster sensation just as the raindrop begins to plummet.

“Whee!” they all scream. It’s only natural. The ones at the bottom are flattened out by their speed and the ones on top just barely hang on. They descend through a grey misty world and then suddenly come out of the clouds.

“Almost there!” one of them shouts as the ground rushes up to meet them.

“See you in the Amazon River!”

“See everybody in the Amazon River!” They all laugh, even though it’s the oldest joke in the book for water droplets.

“And here we goooo!” they all yell together.

Splat. The man looks down at his coat sleeve where the raindrop hit and then up at the sky.

Dang. He forgot his umbrella.


Crane Game Wife

(Introducing the Mid-Week Flash, a short, often rather odd piece of fiction every Wednesday.)

 

I found my wife in a crane game. You know, those ones you find on the street and in bars that are impossible to win. This one was in the back of a run-down arcade. I was bored and when I saw a bunch of small, pretty women inside the case, I thought: Why not? Better than a plushie Spongebob doll.

I put a quarter in and started to move the crane around with the joystick, but they all started running away from it. It was then that I realized they weren’t robots or dolls. They made me sit down and tell them about myself, what I was looking for in a girl, and why I liked them in particular (which was hard, since they were asking about all of them and I didn’t know any of them). Finally, after a couple hours, I put in another quarter and one of them jumped on the crane and I got her out.

She was only ten inches tall but she said if I put her in water, she would grow. Of course, stupid me, I left her in too long and now she’s like, seven feet tall.

I still love her though.


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