A peep out of me

 

Smashwords is having a special Authors Give Back sale. People can download my book for free. We haven’t got a lot else to do, right? If we’re very, very lucky, boredom will be our worst enemy. The less lucky have to face loneliness, deprivation, sickness, and grief.

Well, I can’t fix that. But I can fix Bored. For several hours anyway.

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/599602

I have this insurmountable to-do list on my phone, which I mostly ignore, and periodically angst over. I’m working my way through it at an alarming pace. I wonder how long it’ll last me. My freezer is getting really organized. I’ve figured out how to fight the ants back from the sink. Why aren’t I writing?

I guess I’m still adjusting, still reeling. I haven’t had the confidence to speak about what I’m seeing. For a while there, I wasn’t sure if this was worth worrying about or what.  Then came mental adjustment to new facts. Then came house arrest. Then I had to make fish cakes. Then came denial. Then I just absolutely had to learn how to tune the gears on my bike. Now I think I’ve come to terms, more or less, with whatever the hell is happening.

Have I mentioned how lucky I am? Maybe grateful… blessed… are better ways to put it. My work was already partially remote, so they’re letting us work from home. I didn’t really have that much put away in the stock market… money’s all made up anyway, it comes and goes. I’ve got a cabinet full of grits, rice, and beans if it comes to that. I really have nothing to worry about except other people.

Other people. That’s the only thing worth worrying about, isn’t it? I’m a type B, not a worrier by nature. Not by anybody’s standards. Well, you don’t have to worry about me. I’m not going anywhere. I mean that quite literally.

Missouri’s only got forty-something cases yet. That is, cases which have been tested and reported. Who knows what’s been hacked up out there, invisible, unreported.

It’s strange, behaving like I’m sick when I don’t feel sick. Next time I go out, I’ll get to play bandit with a kerchief on my face. That’s right, a handkerchief. My friends give me shit, because handkerchiefs are my religion. YOU SHOULD HAVE BROUGHT A HANDKERCHIEF, I’ll say, and whip mine out to save the day in every situation.

But I digress. It’s a writer’s prerogative.

So I’ll post more often, because we all need something to read, and it’s nice to know that we’re all alive out there.

Speaking of which… everyone alive out there? My precious reader friends and blogger friends? DO YOU HAVE ENOUGH TOILET PAPER? 

Count off!

 

P.S. Bloggers might appreciate this. The diary of Samuel Pepys, written in the 1660’s in London during a bout of the Bubonic Plague. 

https://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/

I haven’t read a lot of it, but one part sticks in my mind: he was having a little house party, everyone was having a nice time, singing songs, then the party had end because two people got toothaches and wanted to go to bed.

Add modern dentistry and modern nutrition to my gratefulness list.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

Ancient Astrology

 

She handed me a holocopy of a fragmented newspaper from the 1990’s.

“Is that me?” I said, pointing at a sign: Virgo. 

“Yes,” she replied. “We haven’t determined how they came up with these facts, but they’re always correct. The ones written by Madam Zorastra are especially reliable.”

“That’s amazing,” I said. “So we just line up today’s date with the ancient American calendar?”

“Yes. I have the templates here. First, the fee.”

I leaned forward and she tapped my head with a data drawing wand. I blinked several times before regaining my equilibrium.

“So we just line up today’s date with the ancient American calendar?”

“Yes. First, though, the fee.”

“Go ahead,” I said, leaning forward. She tapped it with the data drawing wand. I blink. Red flashes through my eyes.

“Hang on… my defense software is detecting fraud. That can’t be right.”

“Of course not. You haven’t even paid yet.”

“Right, right… Virgo…”

“It says here: ‘your trusting nature makes you incredibly valuable to anyone around you.’”

“Wow! Do you think it’s true?”

“There’s no debating this science. The ancients had stringent scientific standards for anything published in a newspaper.”

“Amazing. I haven’t paid yet, have I?”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

The Empathy Fixer

 

Here’s a short sci-fi I wrote:

https://shorts.quantumlah.org/entry/empathy-fixer

This does not count as being published. It’s just up there for consideration. If you’re interested in reading a zillion other quantum-inspired flash fiction stories, well, you can read them until you don’t know which direction you’re going, whether you’re alive or dead, or what universe this is… right here:

https://shorts.quantumlah.org/new-fiction

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

Fences

 

We used to sleep on the porch
in our sleeping bags on warm nights
square spindles cutting crisp shadows out of the moonlight
the cats would slip between the rungs and leap
fifteen fearless feet to the ground
a jaw-dropping distance, nothing to them.

My family tells me
when I was a toddler
I pushed my head between the bars of my crib
got stuck
and bawled, red-faced, until my mother
buttered my ears and pulled me free.

Climbing the horse gate, hopping over chain-link to retrieve a ball, squeezing between barbed wire, edging carefully under an electrified one
all my memories of fences
are of boundaries broken
rules defied
for better or for worse

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

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