Monday, July 31, 2017

1125. Quantum mechanics

The old man smoked a dirty cigarette, or maybe a small cigar.
I paid so little attention to him as he gathered sticks in the park that his movements appeared conspicuously random, an electron jumping its orbitals.
His appearance at our table, asking for a couple of bucks, surprised me; no change on me, pal.
I thought about him all the way home from the restaurant then never again.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

1124. Brake Light Mafia

Simon pulled apart the rear light on his bike only to find the bulb had been stolen.
Who steals a light bulb from a bike light?
Twelve hundred miles away, a flunky from the Brake Light Mafia screwed it into place, joining other bulbs beyond count.
The lights pointed skyward, waiting for nightfall, waiting to beam out a message.

Friday, July 28, 2017

1123. Kicking around

The old bell didn't clang any more.
A bunch of the local boys stole it one year, welded it to a junk of wood, and called it a rugby trophy.
They were good boys -- especially the mayor's son -- so they didn't catch much trouble.
The parish sexton still rings the mute bell on Sundays and that trophy is still kicking around a basement somewhere.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

1122. This old truck we had

I had this old truck of my father's I drove after he disappeared.
On the night the mall burnt down, Jeff and I had to take the cab off the back so we could shimmy through the back window because the door locks didn't work right.
Who's Jeff?
I'd rather not say.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

1121. Your Uncle Harold

I saw your Uncle Harold today, I think, in the parking lot of the Starbucks on Main.
He was blowing his nose, you know, like he does.
At least, I think it was him.
We're all a bit nervous about Uncle Harold, so please give us a head's up.

Monday, July 24, 2017

1120. Waiting to turn into a coffee shop parking lot

It happened while I was waiting to turn into a coffee shop parking lot.
There were three of them.
Three transfer trucks piloted by three men with handlebar mustaches were lined up one after another at the traffic light headed in the other direction.
I worried for five solid minutes that the universe was warped in some unspecific way.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

1119. We always used to?

The town, only half-remembered from when I was a kid, was now a busted-down, grown-over ghost town.
We'd stop at the gas station for ice cream or to "go to the John" because it was about halfway to my grandma's.
Did we ever care about this place?
Did anyone?

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

1118. It's like that movie

It was like that movie (not the tv show), The Fugitive.
Basically, my boss yelling at me for over-promoting my 1997 Eagle Talon on the company message board; totally unfair in my opinion because I needed to sell it.
So, he was yelling at me so loud and so long that I thought I was getting a condition, but I wasn't.
I guess it's not really like The Fugitive after all.

Monday, July 17, 2017

1117. New things I'm worried about after failing to properly understand they lyrics for "We Didn't Start the Fire" by Billy Joel

Space monkey mafia.
Chubby Checkers, psycho.
Arsonists avoiding police capture.
The grim, unrelenting march of time.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

1116. Lava

"Bobby, don't touch the ground; it's lava," one of the boys said.
What if it's all lava, Bobby?
I mean, the world is coming apart at the seams and we're all as good as doomed.
It's a metaphor, Bobby.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

1115. Top shelf

The top shelf?
No, that's not for me.
The top shelf is a tall man's game.
Every once in a while though, I see a mote of dust escape its orbit and float past me in the golden afternoon.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

1114. Getaway driver

It was a hot Tuesday in July.
She had no text messages.
Her seat reclined backward until she could see sky at the end of the alleyway.
She strained her ears for an alarm from around the corner.

Friday, July 7, 2017

1113. Modern romance

I've gotten in the habit lately of writing love letters to think tanks.
The economic ones really make me swoon.
I've received no replies to date.
Modern romance is hard.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

1112. Modern calisthenics

Why yes - thank you - I have been working out.
My regime?
I've been running with my upper body completely rigid.
It's not really approved per se; more of my own thing.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

1111. Motocycliste

At first, the motorcyclist is sitting on his bike.
Then, he is standing on the motorcycle; known as stunting, I think.
I am watching this in my rearview window.
Next, we are both idling at the intersection, me in front and the motorcyclist in back.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

1110. The world of tomorrow

"This astronaut food tastes like crap, Jenny."
"Well, it's all your father brought down to the shelter, dear."
"How long are we going to be down here - without my real mom?"
"Oh, I don't know: forever or until Kevin Costner shows up."

Saturday, July 1, 2017

1109. A fistfight with Art Garfunkel

I thought I heard on the news that Art Garfunkel had been in a fight.
As I heard it, someone had got in Art's face and Art had kicked his butt--good for Art.
But, this was wrong--and absurd.
It was James Taylor.