Sunday, July 22, 2012

Golf Fundraiser Takes an Interesting Turn

            I had already spent ten minutes wandering through the trees looking for the errant golf ball I had hit and I knew Mike and Ryan were getting impatient. One more minute, I told myself, and then I would just accept the one stroke penalty. I flipped over a flat rock with the head of my golf club and then out of the corner of my eye, round and white, I saw the golf ball. I breathed a sigh of relief. When I bent down to pick it up, however, the ball wasn’t there. I looked around confused and then found it again, ten yards to my right. I took a couple of cautious steps forward and then realized my mistake. It was not my golf ball but the round tail of a white rabbit. I cursed under my breath.
            Before I could walk away, however, the rabbit turned around and, in a dignified voice suitable only for a British radio announcer, said “Follow me.” I blinked. “Ahem,” the rabbit said clearing its throat. “If you want your golf ball back, follow me,” and it hopped off further into the woods, with me, not sure whether it was to retrieve my golf ball or simply because the rabbit had said anything at all, following as close as I could.
            After a while we came to a clearing in the woods, with a small stream on one side and the trees shaping the rest of the border. Here were gathered deer, owls, foxes, turtles, frogs, monkeys, bears, squirrels, beavers and animals of all other sorts. In front of them stood a flip chart on a wooden easel. My rabbit friend hopped up to it and began to address the crowd as I took a seat on a mossy log next to a rather pretentious looking otter.
            “Friends,” began the rabbit, “we have all fallen on tough times but no one more so than John, who has lost his golf ball.” He was pointing at me. “We will use this to our advantage, however. When John fills out his taxes this year, he will claim that the golf ball was stolen and will file for a tax deduction. He will then take the money he saves from the IRS, and invest it in a company that I will incorporate called Rabbit Holdings, Inc. Bear and Squirrel will then sell shares of this company to two people each. The return for their investment will partially come from John’s golf ball money and in part from the money that we will earn when Deer and Owl sell shares of Rabbit Holdings to two more people…”
            It was dark when I finally made it back to the golf course. I walked back into the clubhouse and found Mike and Ryan having a drink at the bar, waiting for me.
            “So, did you find your golf ball?” said Mike. I shook my head. I didn’t want to tell them that I had almost been hired to take part in a Ponzi scheme run by a rabbit who talked with a British accent. I could think of only one thing more embarrassing.
            “It’s almost better that you didn’t,” Ryan interjected before I could even say anything. “See, Mike and I were sitting here at the bar waiting for you and we met the most amazing fellow. Apparently, if you claim that your golf ball was stolen then you can claim it as a tax deduction. Then all you need to do is invest it in…”


This post was based off of the following writing prompt: You’re on a golf course taking part in a fundraiser to cure a disease that’s near and dear to your heart. On the 11th hole, you hit a ball into the woods. While searching for that ball, you see a white rabbit that stops, looks you right in the eye and says, “Follow me.” Link:

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

The Pale Blue Dot

Death is an expected event.
It’s not meant to take you by surprise,
It’s not meant to wet dry eyes, for the
hearse awaits in everybody’s life.
And when a person dies the world spins on
around the sun,
a pale blue dot
in this heaven-reaching universe.
When a person ages and has paid
life’s wages, they know that soon they will
turn the page and reach the back-cover
of the book.
And they know if then they look below from above-
            Or above from below-
            Or outside from within-
they will see that the pale blue dot will
continue to spin around the sun,
And that Death does not stop the sun from rising.        
Death, nevertheless, still seems to come
out of the blue, losing those who once
were here every day and now have
gone away to some place other than
And even after sickness or old
age, even when we are sage enough
to expect the expected,
in the moment that we hear the news,
we are confused,
thinking it would happen tomorrow,
or yesterday,
but not right now.
And though the loss gives us pain that will
always remain, we shouldn’t complain.
Instead we should smile, for though we are
shocked by that which we knew all the while,
nature is not.
And our pale blue dot will continue
to spin around the sun
in this heaven-reaching universe.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Scene Stealer #1

Anna watched the sun come up for the fifth day in a row. Sleep had eluded her since the accident. So did her memory. Reaching up to touch the heavy bandage that was wrapped around her head and was covering the bullet wound, Anna tried to remember what had happened. She screwed her eyes shut and tried to make her brain work but all she could recollect was the sound of a gunshot and a hot stinging pain on the side of her head. The doctors had told her that despite the damage and the pain, the bullet had merely grazed her. They had also said that she was lucky to be alive. Anna wasn’t sure she agreed.
            The entirety of the sun was now breaking free of the horizon, spewing blood-red rays of light across the sky. The residents of the San Fernando Valley below Anna’s window were beginning to awaken. Anna watched on and wished that they wouldn’t for somewhere in the city the person who had tried to murder her would also be waking up. Some say that ignorance is bliss but Anna disagreed. She knew that her shooter could return at any time to finish the job and her amnesia made each moment that passed exponentially more agonizing than the pain she felt in her head.
Anna got up and leaned her head on the windowpane, looking down at the ground below her. She was currently on the seventh floor of her apartment building which rested on top of a cliff that dropped at least 100 feet lower. If she jumped from the window the fall to the bottom would certainly kill her and end both pain from the wound and the torment of her amnesia.
And then it came to her. The thought of jumping from the window clicked on a part of her brain that made her remember that her would-be-murderer was not waking up right now.  In fact, the person was already awake for the shooter was she. Anna looked back out the window and contemplated whether a second attempt at suicide was worth it.


This post was based off of the following writing prompt:

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

A Mad Scientist Approaches You

            Jessica had an enormous amount of work to do and she was pounding away at her keyboard, brow furrowed, and eyes locked in steady concentration at her computer screen. A slow uncontrollable smile fought its way across my face as I watched her from the other side of the office floor over the low cubicle walls. I loved the way she worked with such passion and intensity. I loved the way she bit her bottom lip as she typed. I loved the way she flicked her hair out of her eyes as it fell across her face. In fact, I thought she was the most beautiful and talented woman I had ever seen and I loved everything about her. The only thing I hated about her was the fact that she didn’t know I existed.
            Jessica and I had never met, had never even talked, and I couldn’t live another day with the unbearable weight that was crushing my heart. I sighed and leaned back in my chair, knowing I didn’t have to. After eight years of longing for her, it was time. Today was the day that I was going to make Jessica fall in love with me.
            I quickly finished up the TPS report I was working on, stood up, and starting walking towards Jessica’s desk. How could I possibly start a conversation with her out of the blue?, I thought to myself. Hey, I’m Ryan. I noticed you started working here eight years ago and just thought I’d introduce myself now. I shuddered at the thought of how embarrassing that would be. Lucky for me, there was a much easier way. I reached Jessica’s desk and kept walking, made a right turn, and went into the men’s bathroom.
            I locked the door and took out a small glass vial out of my pocket, holding it up to the light. The substance inside was a liquid, yet it wasn’t a uniform color. Rather it was a dazzling pattern of red, pink, yellow, purple, and turquoise and as I tilted the vial in my hand, the colors and patterns of the liquid shifted like a kaleidoscope. I would have been more amazed at its appearance had I not known what the liquid was. It was a Love Potion.
            It had taken me over two years, my entire life savings, an owed favor from a high school friend who was now a U.S. senator, and a trip to the basement of a night club in Armenia to obtain it. In short, I had risked my entire life for this Love Potion. I didn’t care, however. Its effect- which was to cause the object of the imbiber’s desire to fall deeply and madly in love with him- would be more than worth it. I popped the cap off and, raising the vial and saying “Cheers” to my reflection in the bathroom mirror, downed the polychromatic liquid. I immediately felt different. The chains of unrequited love that were strangling my heart had been lifted. It worked!
            I ran out of the bathroom, down to Jessica’s desk, and spun the chair around. I gasped. Jessica was sitting in her chair staring back at me, but now I no longer saw her as the most beautiful woman I had ever seen. Now I thought she looked like the ugliest and most vile creature that ever existed. “Ryan! I’m SO happy to see you!” Jessica said, leaping out of her chair and giving me a huge hug and a kiss on the cheek. I broke myself free of her embrace and, dropping to my hands and knees and vomiting, cursed myself for not reading the side effects on the vial.


This post was based off of the following writing prompt: A mad scientist approaches you with an offer: He has a secret potion that will help you get the thing you want most in this world—be it a person, a thing, an ability, etc. What you don’t know (and won’t reveal until the end of your story) is that there is one dire consequence (not death) from drinking the potion. Link: