Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Eye Candy

I originally wrote this during my last outburst of flash fiction that lasted from January through early September of last year. Specifically, around late June this was written, because I remember talking about it with a lawyer cousin-in-law of mine who was finishing up on a three volume military fantasy that took place during the Napoleonic Wars (which reminds me, I should ask him if he finally completed the damn thing. From what I understand it was meticulously researched and he spent the better part of five years writing it).

Anyways, I debated whether or not to post this on FSG, simply because it went one page over my self imposed cap of four. At the time, everything else I was posting either fell under the cap or finished at the cap, so to post something that was five pages long was (for me at least) tempting fate.

As luck would have it, around November '09, I was starting to give thought about retooling FSG, simply because I was running out of flash fiction to post and the only stories I had left were at least fifteen or more pages in length. In the end, it never made it to the original format of FSG because of that very reason of being too long for the original format of FSG.

Fast forward to January.

After the one month hiatus, I had all of my stories lined up and ready for posting, including this one. Then a funny thing happened: I had temporarily ran out of stories. To clarify, back in early December '09, I chose to revisit my bi-yearly phase of submitting my stuff for contests (another post for another time), and after doing about a dozen submissions of three stories I thought were my best work (Red Stripe, A Desirable Image and Creativity Inaction), I found myself needing to do a temporary reshuffle of what I had lined up. Thus, this particular story got pushed back from the original posting time frame of early April until most of those submissions flamed out (rejection).

Fast forward to now.

Even though I still have one story pounding the pavement (Red Stripe), I feel comfortable enough to now post this particular story without worrying about whether or not I have enough stories left before calling it a day for FSG.

Called "Eye Candy", it was originally inspired by a lady who used to peddle her hot dogs in a deserted parking lot wearing basically a pair of sneakers and a bikini.

Need I say more?

Monday, June 28, 2010

Don't You Know That Blogs Are Scrapple For The Brain?

Sometimes the most difficult part about blogging is not writing a post, but posting the finished product. There have been many a time when I've written a post, only to have second thoughts about posting it or second thoughts about people seeing it after posting it, and reluctantly nuking it because of those second thoughts. Even wrote a post about acting on those second thoughts.

I got to thinking about this the other day when I read a wonderfully rambling post by Joey. One of the topics he touched upon was staying true to one's self. In the comments, I agreed with his premise by saying 'Definitely gotta be true to you. If not, why not?' However, in agreeing with his comment (which I still stand behind 100%), it put me into a bit of a conundrum as it pertains to the post in question, of which the title up above is what it is.

As you know, I have a major disconnect between titles of posts and content of posts. I came up with the title because I became enamored of the meat product called "Scrapple". For those of you who don't know what Scrapple is, it is the ultimate mystery meat. Scrapple is the real version of the running joke of what's in a order of Chinese food or a hot dog. Simplest definition I can come up with is: animal body parts.

Trust me, the post wasn't about Scrapple, it was about blogging. Specifically, commenting on blogs.

As you most of you are aware, I hand write all of my posts before actually posting them on the blog. Makes it easier to shuffle things around when need be and it keeps with my offbeat nature of walking around town or sitting in my backyard with a pen and paper.

Anyways, I wrote a three and quarter page long post about how and why I comment (or not comment) on blogs. A couple of days after I finished writing what I still consider to be a well balanced and thought out piece of prose, I got to thinking about the people who would be reading it. As most of you know, I have no problem blasting/calling out/questioning other bloggers for doing certain things with/to their blogs that I find highly distasteful. However, when the shoe is on the other foot, it becomes harder to admit to doing a lighter version of what you find distasteful in other bloggers.

The one glaring problem I do have with this particular post, is that it contains some fantastic bullet points why I do or don't comment on a given blog. Now, while this list is totally based on my personal whims, in no way does it diminish the fact that I fully enjoy reading all 85+ blogs that I subscribe/follow on a daily basis.

While I don't mind making people think with my writings nor do I mind offending people I don't know or don't like, it's a whole different matter when comes to people I do like and respect. The other glaring problem with this post is that it can be misinterpreted as thinly veiled insult about one's blog. Chances are that if you'd read it, you would walk away thinking that I just insulted you and your blog. Chances are that I would probably feel the same way if I was in your shoes, and probably would have a hard time accepting that person's explanation that my blog wasn't being targeted by that post.

While I do subscribe to the belief of being true to one's self, sometimes one's conscience can dictate otherwise. I mean, do you post something that could and probably would be gravely misconstrued into something that you didn't mean and damn the consequences, or do you not post it and thus while running the risk of not being true to yourself still take comfort in the fact that your friends/readers are still your friends/readers?

I really do want to share this particular post with everyone, but honestly, I'm afraid of the negative reaction that I'm sure to get by sticking this post on my blog.

Having a conscience means having a conundrum when you least expect it.

Or want it.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Newington Center....And Beyond (2)

For your viewing pleasure on what is probably a gorgeous day somewhere within the contiguous United States, I present to you, not only the shortest post on Cedar's Mountain, but the second installment of Newington Center....And Beyond.

Friday, June 25, 2010


The early morning.

Lying in bed through the open window you hear the leaves and the branches move as a strong breeze blows down then up a deserted side road. The birds as they begin to wake up and greet the morning with melody and harmony. A car drives down the road on a trip to nowhere in particular. A dog barking. A cat purring.

At work during morning break.

A helicopter lands on a hospital roof. Cars and buses traveling to and fro. People arguing with the windows open. A toddler crying.

At work during the afternoon break.

The wind roaring through the wind tunnel that is the back parking lot. Glasses sliding across the table as the wind picks up in speed. A radio blasting ethnic music. A street corner preacher preaching through a megaphone on a busy thoroughfare. People chatting as they walk through the parking lot.

In the late afternoon.

People chatting as they're walking down the street. The trees swaying to and fro as the wind blows hard up and down the street. Cars and buses rumbling down the street.

Early evening at home.

Car pulling into a driveway on a quiet suburban street. A door opening and closing. Gravel crunching as a person walks to the front door. A dog barking. A cat running through the house.

Late evening on a cool summer night.

Back door opening and closing. Someone sitting on a rusty old swing. Bugs being zapped. A gentle breeze swaying the branches and ringing the wind chimes. A crackling bonfire. Crickets chirping. People quietly talking. A car rumbling down the broken road.


Crickets chirping. The gentle purring of a cat lying at the foot of the bed. The steady heartbeat of a partner as you rest your head on their chest. Curtains gently flapping in the breeze. The evening fades into an empty silence as the body gradually shuts down to recharge and refresh so as to face the new day with a sense of purpose.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Excuse Me?

Okay, we're almost back into the schwing of things as it pertains to FSG. I have two more short stories to share with you before we had back into the serials. This one has a Rube Goldberg type of background to it, so I'm gonna try my best not to get everyone completely lost. If you don't know what a Rube Goldberg is, chances are that 1} you're under the age of 60 and thus will need to click on the Wikipedia link for a more in depth explanation or 2} you aren't a die hard comic strip enthusiast, and thus will need to click on the Wikipedia link for a more in depth explanation or 3} you haven't read MAD or CRACKED magazine.


On April Fool's day 2009, I published a nifty little short called "Uncomfortable" in which the basis of the story was a conversation I had with a couple of my friends over the peculiar turn my writing had taken. However that had nothing to do with this (or does it?), so forget about that and concentrate on this.

Take two.

Exactly one year and three weeks ago, while I was in the midst of churning out a sizeable chunk of flash/short fiction, I decided to take a stab at writing a true serial. What I mean by true is that instead of writing a twenty to thirty page monstrosity and posting it two pages at a clip, I wrote self-contained individual stories.

The first one was called "WYSIWYG", which if you blog, you know it's the acronym for What You See Is What You Get. This story was not quite like the others, because unlike the others that I'd posted, this one suffered from the malady of No Plot For You!. But, in spite that malady, I kept on writing because I figure sooner or later I would wind up with a plot.

Eventually, I wound up with a plot. Sort of. Well, not really. The very skeletal plot was that the female in the story wanted to tell the male in the story something. Problem was, I had no clue on what that something was. But that didn't stop me, no sir, because I knew that if I kept on writing it, I would eventually come up with that particular something.

So I rambled along, posting "WYSINWYG" (What You See Is Not What You Get) in early July; posting "WTHWYT?" (What The Hell Were You Thinking?) in early August; and finally "Black & Black" in mid September. When I wrote the last line of "Black & Black", I knew right then and there that I was hip deep in pig poop. Why? Because I still didn't have the foggiest idea on what the female character wanted to say. Twenty five plus pages and I was like a guy with a vasectomy having sex.


After thinking about it for a month, I gave up, put the serial to bed, and yelled at my muse for being so tantalizingly cruel to me.

Fast forward to this year. I had just relaunched FSG after a one month hiatus, and while I had about five stories lined up lined up for posting, I decided that I still needed another story or two to carry me into the late summer/early fall for the blog. So I dusted off the incomplete serial called "My Inner Sanctum" and began reading. After about a day or so, I finally came up with what I wanted the female to ask the male in the story.

About a week later, the story was done. Now, here's the strange part. Unlike last week's short story, in which I wrote a few days after a blog post in May, this one I wrote in the first week of January. Please keep that thought in mind when you read this, because even though this story has no connection whatsoever to last week's, is actually the polar opposite of last week's. Last week's showed one possible outcome of that Friends with Benefits issue. Today's will show another possible outcome to that same Friends with Benefits issue.

For your reading enjoyment, I would like to present to you, my short story entitled Excuse Me?. This story concludes the "My Inner Sanctum" serial. If you need to be brought up to speed, I have linked up the previous five stories for your convenience.

Monday, June 21, 2010


Amazing, isn't it?

How a single blip in our day-to-day existence can radically alter a person's outlook for days, weeks, or even months later.

How you might ask?

Suppose you're normally a relatively easy going laid back kind of person who manages to let most problems, big or small, roll off your back. Then, in a blink of an eye, something happens to radically change that outlook.

If you're like me, you find a way to channel that outlook so as to inflict the least amount of damage on the people you respect the most. Which in my case, was to take a short hiatus from the Cyber World, so as to focus the anger and stress elsewhere.

And where did I attempt to focus this phenomenal amount of anger and stress?


A good idea in theory, but wickedly hard to implement. Try as I might, I couldn't quite wrap my brain around any of the stories I started prior to my blip. So I spent most of my hiatus doing the next best thing: frying my brain cells to create smoke that released itself through my ears.

AKA Thinking.

In any event, instead of trying to work out my anger and stress by doing some original writing, I spent the next three and a half days thinking about everything else. Also worked in a little editing as well, but mostly thought about my current predicament. I did think about one of my stories, but that mainly consisted of how to continue from where I left off at.

In the end, the three and a half days of solid thinking did do me some good. I was able to integrate with a reasonable degree of success my long term problem with the other facets of my life. I was able to come up with an idea on how to move my story along, but more importantly, I found the necessary item in which to channel my highly acidic and caustic thoughts.

My short story.

After a little bit of hesitancy, I started tweaking the violence and darkening the overall content. Not sure how its gonna play out in the long run, but the time being, I have a place in which I can channel all my anger, stress and sarcasm (yes, believe it or not, I am the type of person who can push your button with my sarcasm) into, without fear of offending or suffering any repercussions.

It's a start, and to a small degree, it proves an adage that sometimes we can find refuge from the troubles in our lives in the most unlikeliest of places.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Newington Center.....And Beyond!

After a one week hiatus, Shooting Suburbia returns with a new post for your entertainment and enjoyment.

The next month's worth of posts will feature Newington, Newington center and a few of the surrounding communities (including work as well).

Be prepared to be amazed, stunned, incredulous and bored to tears as G tries to pass off his mundane life as something completely different.

To quote the band Madness:

One Step Beyond!

By the way, I want to wish all you Dads out there, no matter what gender (what, single moms can be Dads), a very happy Father's Day

Friday, June 18, 2010

Memories Are Made Of These?

It's funny on how certain snippets of conversation can still resonate in our memory years or even decades after they were uttered. I figure during my lifetime, I must've heard hundreds of thousands of conversational snippets, and out of those multitudes, only a few have stuck.

I'm not sure on why that was. Perhaps I was experiencing something new or different at the time, and thus my atennae were super sensitive. Maybe it was due to the fact that I was wickedly bored at that particular moment. Maybe I was a combination of all things.

Who knows why something stuck in my (now) bald head all those years ago, but in any event, it's gonna make for a interesting post.


Because ya'll gonna experience first hand the deepest, darkest part of G's memory, and marvel over the fact that he has such incredibly fascinating minutia stored in that head of his.

So I present to you the reader, three favorite snippets of random conversation that have stuck with me over the past twenty-five years or so.

Warning: What you are about to read is to be considered offensive to 95% of the female reading public and .5% offensive to the male reading public. Viewer discretion is strongly advised but not really encouraged.

In chronological order, they are:

1} "I love you blondie because you're all nice and wet!"

Back when I was my son's age (about 1982-83), me and few of my pseudo friends would take a trip by bus to Madison Square Garden to watch was known then as the World Wide Wrestling Federation (aka WWE). Yes, back then I was a hardcore wrestling fan. How hardcore? I used to arrange my days around weekly programs like "Southwest Texas Wrestling" on the USA Network, or the monthly cards that MSG would briefly unlock their t.v. channel for. But I digress (one day I will come back to the topic of professional wrestling).

Anyways, my friends and I were hanging outside the Garden trying to figure out how to kill several hours before the Garden opened up for the show. Out of nowhere, this uglier than sin drunken bum uttered that particular phrase. I turned around to see if I could spot who he was talking to.

No dice.

But that one sentence....ah that one sentence. Even though I had absolutely no clue on what he was talking about at the time (that came much, much later once I started dating in the late 80's), I though it was the funniest thing that someone could say. So it became stuck in my brain and from time to time, I would bring it up whenever I wanted to get a laugh...or needed some motivation for a story scene.

2} "Oh baby, you can sit on my face anytime."

This one took place about the same time period as the first one. I was standing in line at the hardware section of my local Caldor store (went belly up in the 90's), when the person behind me uttered that sentence. I looked to see where the guy was looking and saw a rather hot looking black female walking down the aisle. At the time I said to myself, 'Why would he want that hot looking lady to sit on his face?'

Like I said, I was a major neophyte when it came to the opposite sex back then. Back then, my speed was the big boobs that were being shown in movies like "Porky's".

Today, I get where the guy was coming from (shit, I started understanding once I started dating in late '87) and if the same thing was said in my presence today, I probably would be shakin' my head at the ballsiness of the person making the comment....and probably wish I still had the same crude tackiness that sort of disappeared after I went north of 35.

3} "If I die, does my mom get a refund?"

By the late 80's, I was sharing an apartment with my girlfriend (now wife) and a best friend. One day while I was channel surfing on the cable (back then my cable remote was a push button box hooked up to my t.v. with a switch that I had to push if I wanted to go further up the dial), I came across a trailer for a movie that featured people with telekinetic powers.

I don't remember the name of the movie, but that particular sentence was uttered at the very end of the trailer. I don't know why that particular sentence resonated with me, but it became one of my favorite movie quotes.

This particular quote has to this day defied all my attempts to either logically explain the concept behind it, or logically apply a real world scenario. Case in point is that while trying to write this particular paragraph, I made six previous attempts at trying to explain this quote and each one got no further than a dozen words.

In any event, these are my top three most memorable snippets. There are others buried deep in the recesses of my memory, but for the most part they're pop culture oriented.

How 'bout you? Do you have any favorite snippets that have stayed with you for such an extended period of time?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Update On Family

The issue which caused me to take a brief but necessary hiatus for the past four days has not been resolved (and probably won't be for some time to come). However, I've been able to (with a certain degree of success) make it an unfortunate part of my life, and thus, am now ready to get back into the groove of being that complex person you've come to know and appreciate. Once again, not only do I thank you for your patience and understanding for the past four days, but I thank you in advance for your patience and understanding in the upcoming days (& weeks & months) as I deal with this particularly thorny issue.

So as not to keep you experiencing withdrawal symptoms, I leave you with this wonderful image that a former chat room bud of mine who goes by the name of Mommy & Dave passed on to me.

Have a fantastic day and I shall see everyone tomorrow.

Saturday, June 12, 2010


Due to some unforeseen consequences experienced this past Friday (6/11) from a family issue that I was only made aware of a scant two days prior, and the phenomenal amount of anger and stress that those unforeseen consequences have triggered, there will be no post today (for Shooting Suburbia) or Monday (here).

I am hoping to have a good chunk of that anger and stress blunted to the point where I can comment and post without biting anyone's head off. I value your readership and friendship, and the last thing I would want to do is jeopardize either of those by saying something incredibly offensive.

Because of that potential of engaging mouth without putting brain into gear, I have turned the comments off for this post.

I should be a minimal functioning unit by Wednesday's installment of Flashing Georgie's Shorts.

Until then, I will be making myself scarce from all parts of the Cyber World. Please keep in mind that this is not a reflection on you, your wonderful blog, or even your Facebook page, but simply my way of trying to concentrate my energies in dealing with this sensitive family issue with as few distractions as possible.

I thank you in advance for your patience and understanding.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Has Video Killed The Radio Star?

I don't think so.

I mean, I love video. Always have and always will. I believe that video is the perfect compliment to audio.

Before I go any further, I would like to clarify the term "video" as it applies to this post. When I say video, I'm not talking about music videos, movie videos (VHS or DVD) or the stuff that populates every t.v. channel known to mankind. I'm talking about the live action that you see from the minute you wake up to the minute that you call it a day.

While audio will always be the dominating factor to what I write, video has made its fair share of contributions as well. Even though I may blather on about one particular type of video that I see on a daily basis, that part will always make up a small percentage of what I see on a daily/weekly basis.

It's an established fact that I am truly enamored of where I live and what I live next to, and because of that, those two components make up the majority of my personal video collection.

For instance, as of the day I originally wrote this post (5/2), this is what I'm watching as it applies to their particular components.

I'm sitting on a rocking bench, which is located under the bay window in my front yard. Being that it's the only shady place in the front yard no matter what time of day, it gets an extreme amount of usage.

Right now it's an extremely gorgeous Sunday afternoon, with temps in the hi 80's. Unlike the previous day, there is no breeze either blowing down the street or down the mountain, so you can really feel the heat.

It's very quiet in my neighborhood, as people are basically elsewhere. The only sounds that can be heard is a lawnmower off in the distance and birds singing their songs of joy in the mountain. The mountain itself is now in full bloom, for if you look at it from a distance, the mountain looks like on giant layer of grass has been laid upon it.

Other types of video have also influenced and inspired my writing as well. Other types of people, not only just the attractive 25-40 year olds that I see, have contributed to my short stories too.

For instance, a supermarket cashier this past Halloween formed the basis of my short story "Red Stripe", simply because of the way she was dressed. A bottle of beer gave me the story title.

As you can see by these examples, the video of my life really does play an integral role in my writing.

How 'bout you? How does the video of your life inspire or influence your creativity?

Thursday, June 10, 2010


23 years ago, I decided to do something completely out of the ordinary with my life.

I started dating.

And being true to form, since I had no clue on how to approach the opposite sex, mother dearest took the bull by the horns and set me up on a blind date with a friend's daughter.

And where did mother dearest meet her friend?

At bingo.

And where did I meet my blind date?

At bingo.

Yes, at bingo.

From that first awkward meeting, we chose to have another awkward meeting, in the form of a non-chaperoned date.

Went to a movie and dinner.

No idea what the movie was, but we had dinner at a long since closed Denny's. Come to think of it, that movie theater closed as well.

Anyways, one thing lead to another, and by the spring of 1988, we were sharing an apartment with my best friend in New Britain. Prior to moving in the spring of 1988, I popped a surprise on my lady love Christmas morning, by proposing.

She accepted.

One and half years later, we were married.

And just like that first date, so did the wedding take a turn for the truly weird.

Originally, it was supposed to be an outdoor wedding at Mill Pond park, at the waterfalls (can I get an AWWWWWWWWHHHHHHH from everyone?). The back up plan, just in case that Mother Nature decided to watch a weepy soap opera, was to have it at the church in New Britain. Guess what peoples? Mother Nature chose to watch a wickedly weepy soap opera all that week, so we had our wedding in New Britain.

Did I mention that we had to park 3/4 of mile away from the church because of a festival called "Main Street USA" was being held on that very same day at the very same time frame as the wedding, which basically closed the downtown area?

Did I mention that I forgot to grab the corsages, which were sitting in a fridge, at home, which was located some five miles away from the church? And that I had to borrow my best man's car to go and retrieve said flowers?

Did I mention that for all the headaches that were suffered on the day of the wedding, the wedding itself went off without a hitch?

However, I will mention that some two decades later, through all the peaks and valleys, two children some eight years apart, four address changes involving three towns, fifteen different cars, five parakeets, two cats, one cockatiel, three gerbils and enough job stress that would make any other sane person crack under the pressure, I am very glad to have that young lady (who is three years older than yours truly) at my side.

I love my wife to pieces, having spent as of today, 21 years in chaotic wedded bliss.

And I wouldn't have it any other way.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Incompleteness (10)

And now, the story that was the originator of two and a half months worth of seriously strange stories on FSG. This particular story, entitled "Caged", was originally written during my short story outburst in the summer of '09 for FSG.

This one has elements of physical violence and suggestive sexual violence, and simply oozes with anger and hostility. But perhaps the most interesting thing about this story, is that the opening paragraph gives no hint as to what lies in store until the fourth sentence.

Originally inspired by the song "Bullet for Butterfly Wings" by the Smashing Pumpkins, the lyric "I'm still just a rat in the cage." was the trigger for the story.

Not sure why I went off the deep end with story (yeah, you heard correctly) but I found that once I got rolling with the original scenario, the words just seemed to flow out of me, because I think it took me less than an hour to write this.

Anyways, to help you decide whether or not to read the last story, here is the opening paragraph.

"Aghhhh!! You're drinking too much! Stop! Stop! Stop!"
"Shut your face! I only drank a shot's worth!"
"In addition to the quarter pint you took this morning!"
"You're such a crybaby! Here, drink this."
Taking a couple of sniffs, he made a face, and asked, "What is it?"
"O.J. spiked with crystal meth."
"You heard me. I need to get wasted and this will do the trick."
"Not on your life!"
I sincerely hope that you found this little detour into the inner workings of one slightly strange blogger/writer fulfilled your need to be entertained and to be challenged.

I have one more small detour from the detour to take, before we head back to the main highway that is the short story serials.

Next week's short story installment will actually be a normal post, but due to the content and subject matter of this post, part one (the background) will start here on Cedar's Mountain, while part two (the story) will be found on FSG.

Monday, June 7, 2010

High School: 1957 vs. 2010

Note: I'm sure you've probably seen this bopping around the 'net and in your e-mail, but I'm feeling mighty unoriginal today. This e-mail is courtesy of a former supervisor of mine whose brother has a wicked sense of humor.

Scenario 1

Jack goes quail hunting before school and then pulls into the school parking lot with his shotgun in his truck's gun rack.

1957: Vice Principal comes over, looks at Jack's shotgun, goes to his car and gets his shotgun to show Jack.

2010: School goes into lockdown, FBI called, Jack hauled off to jail and never sees his truck or gun again. Counselors called in for traumatized students and teachers.

Scenario 2

Buster and Dale get into a fist fight after school.

1957: Crowd gathers. Buster wins. Buster and Dale shake hands and end up buddies.

2010: Police called and SWAT team arrives--they arrest both Buster and Dale. They are both charged with assault and expelled even though Buster started it.

Scenario 3

Jeffrey will not be still in class, he disrupts other students.

1957: Jeffrey sent to the Principal's office and given a good paddling by the Principal. He then returns to class, sits still and does not disrupt class again.

2010: Jeffrey is given huge does of Ritalin. He becomes a zombie. He is then tested for ADD. The family gets extra money (SSI) from the government because Jeffrey has a disability.

Scenario 4

Billy breaks a window in his neighbor's car and his Dad gives him a whipping with his belt.

1957: Billy is more careful next time, grows up normal, goes to college and becomes a successful businessman.

2010: Billy's dad is arrested for child abuse. Billy is removed to foster care and joins a gang. The state psychologist is told by Billy's sister that she remembers being abused herself and their dad goes to prison. Billy's mom has an affair with the psychologist.

Scenario 5

Mark gets a headache and takes some aspirin to school.

1957: Mark shares his aspirin with the Principal out on the smocking dock.

2010: The police are called and Mark is expelled from school for drug violations. His car is then searched for drugs and weapons.

Scenario 6

Pedro fails high school English.

1957: Pedro goes to summer school, passes English and goes to college.

2010: Pedro's cause is taken up by state. Newspaper articles appear nationally explaining that teaching English as a requirement for graduation is racist. ACLU files class action lawsuit against state school system and Pedro's English teacher. English is then banned from core curriculum. Pedro is given his diploma anyway but ends up moving lawns for a living because he cannot speak English.

Scenario 7

Johnny takes apart leftover firecrackers from the Fourth of July, puts them in a model airplane paint bottle and blows up a red ant bed.

1957: Ants die.

2010: ATF, Homeland Security and the FBI are all called. Johnny is charged with domestic terrorism. The FBI investigates his parents--and all siblings are removed from the home and all computers are confiscated. Johnny's dad is placed on a terror watch list and is never allowed to fly again.

Scenario 8

Johnny falls while running during recess and scrapes his knee. He is found crying by his teacher, Mary. Mary hugs him to comfort him.

1957: In a short time, Johnny feels better and goes on playing.

2010: Mary is accused of being a sexual predator and loses her job. She faces 3 years in State Prison. Johnny undergoes 5 years of therapy.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Twinkletoes Ted (5)

And now, for your viewing pleasure, the final installment of "Twinkletoes Ted".

Unfortunately, I ran out of gas while writing this, so only the first pic actually applies to the story. The remaining pics are a brief sample of what I hope to turn into nifty posts of mini-travelogues, each about five to six pictures in length.

These travelogues will show the world of Cedar Mountain and of Cedar's Mountain as seen through my eyes.

Be very very afraid.


Life is don't take it seriously.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Hey Mr. Radio Programmer? Your Programming Skills Suck!

I am a hardcore radio listener, both college and commercial, and I've come to the conclusion that I can program a time slot better than most of the yokels that are out there today screwing up the formats.

While there isn't much I can offer in the way of advice for college radio...wait a minute, yes I can. I can offer tons of advice to college radio jocks. But this rant is for the most part going to be focused on those yokels who program the commercial stations.

I've come to seriously question the brain cell capacity of the people who program the various radio stations I listen to, simply because their musical choices make absolutely no sense whatsoever. How, you may ask? Simple.

Lets start off by chopping down the major rock (shoot, the only rock) station in Hartford CT, 106.9 WCCC. While for the most part, they do play a decent selection of hard rock and arena rock and mix it quite well (on their AM side 1290 plays classical), they have this need to play two artists who absolutely drives me nuts. One doesn't fit the format, and the other should've been put away about fifteen years ago.

The one that should've been put away fifteen years ago is Motley Crue. Pop metal didn't cut it back in the 80's and it certainly isn't cutting it now. Please, put away the song "Home Sweet Home" and "Girls, Girls, Girls" because they don't belong on the radio station. They're tired, redundant and no one under the age of thirty or over the age of 40 don't give a crap about them.

The one that don't fit the format is U2. I like U2, although if I hear "With or Without You" one more time, I'll personally come down to the station and yank out all the copies that you have of U2 an burn them. And why the hell are you playing U2 to begin with? Your format is hard rock and you play bands like Nickelback, Nonpoint, Puddle of Mudd and Avenged Sevenfold. Not 80's bands who haven't been relevant since the mid 90's.

Now, as for the other yokels who don't know how to program, here are a few suggestions for those of you who have Modern Alternative or MOR rock formats for your stations.

Stop playing one or two particular songs by an artist. Both of your formats are notorious for that. Here is my partial list of what you should permanently put away.

"Amie" by Pure Prairie League. I like Pure Prairie League. I even like the album where this song originates from {Bustin' Out}. I'm not liking the song anymore. You want to play some PPL, then try playing the companion cut to this song. It's called "Falling In And Out Of Love" and it actually fades into the song "Amie". Or from the same album, a cut called "The Jazzman".

"I Need You Tonight" by INXS. I like INXS, but this song is perpetually chopped because you guys don't like the companion song that this song bridges into. Stop playing it unless you're gonna play the second one as well.

"Sedated" and "Blitzkrieg Bop" by The Ramones. Calling yourself Alternative because you play the Ramones would be a little more convincing if you played something else besides these two songs from their vast catalogue.

Same goes for Pearl Jam. They did other songs besides "Teen Angel", but you seemed to be overly enamored of a 60's cover tune. And let's not forget "Joe's Garage" by Frank Zappa. I love Frank Zappa, but "Joe's Garage" is a sucky song.

Oooh, oooh, even better. How 'bout playing something else by the Clash instead of "Rock The Casbah" or "Should I Stay or Should I Go?" Or something else by Jimmy Buffet instead of "Margaritaville"?

Or for those stations who decide to be "hip" by playing reggae, could you play something else besides Bob Marley's "Buffalo Soldier" or "No Worry No Cry"? I mean, there is a ton of fantastic old school reggae just begging to be played. So why don't you actually play some?

So how 'bout it gang? Got any pet peeves about the redundant schtuff that radio programmers foist upon their listeners? Any suggestions to add? Songs or artists, it don't matter which. All will be honored, commented and approved.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Incompleteness (9)

I decided with the fourth story to go back to the issue of Jerry becoming a food source. In this story, he was hospitalized after the Platinum Queen's entourage was a bit overzealous in prepping Jerry for his new life as a renewable food source.

I also decided with this story to add another element to the world building, by having Jerry deal with animals, specifically dogs, through the beginning portion of his stay on this world.

I probably would've explained the reasoning behind Jerry's friend being able to switch back and forth between human and semi-human life forms. That's right, I said semi-human. In addition to giving Jerry's friend a name (Viktor), I also make him one quarter dog (his head), in this case a bulldog, and three quarters human. I actually did research for this story, because I wanted to make things as far out as possible.

So with the pivotal scene of Jerry being in the hospital, I made Viktor's second in command (his number one) a mini-Schnauzer and the nurse a St. Bernard.

Again, the story was inspired by the song "Second Chance" and the title of the story is "A Bad Ending".

One thing you should know is that this is the last story I wrote for this potential novella, and the main reason as to why the ending sounds abandoned, is because at this particular point, I became incredibly vapor locked on what to write next. Not only for this story, but for both stories overall. I eventually gave up trying to write this novella, and instead moved on to writing my second novel.

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