Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The One That Got Away (three word Wednesday - beacon, grieve, kindred)

The One That Got Away

Tom and Alexa share the sea,
The beacon of light on the rocky shore,
Would landmark those kindred to Tom,
Today Alexa pays the beacon no heed,
For she is in control,
Adrift without direction,
The rod discarded for a clutch of his chest,
Tom is at peace on her deck,
And Alexa will grieve for him in solitude,
For he is hers,
And she will keep him,
For herself

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Meeting Savannah (3 word Wednesday - ideal, measure, teeter)

A clean cut man in a suit enters the room holding the handle of the metal door to have it latch as silently as possible. He peers about the room, which appears to be an odd hybrid of a college dormitory and a prisoner interrogation room, complete with one-way glass. A small television is silently facing a worn couch. On a card table in the center of the room is an incomplete pyramid of upside-down porcelain teacups. A young woman in the middle of her teen years slouches in a folding chair while staring intently at the pyramid. He can only see the back of her long straight bright red mane as the door closes. He starts to speak but pauses upon noticing a teacup suspended in mid-air is about to be placed onto the sixth level of the pyramid. His palms swell with sweat in a nervous silence until the subtle chalky scratching sound of porcelain’s friction on porcelain ceases.

“Ahem…”, he chortles, “Miss? Miss Savannah Rogers?”

“Yea”, she speaks in a bothered tone only a teenager can master.

“Pleasure to meet you Miss Rogers. My name is Brian Hunt, Federal Bureau of Investigation”. He steps to an angle he can see her face. Indifferent to her visitor, she focuses upon another teacup not currently resting on the fragile structure. The teacup gently levitates.

“Brian Hunt. How generic. That’s your REAL name? Or am I not supposed to know that.”

“Do you have a nickname? Can I call you Vannah? Maybe Savie…”

“It’s Savannah. That’s my name and that’s what I’m called. Can I use Brian Hunt or do you prefer asshole?”, Savannah visually measures the height of the suspended teacup.

“A sense of humor, I see”, Brian scratches his head. He has not had much experience negotiating with teenagers, much less telekinetic teenagers.

“No. I was serious. You look more like an asshole than a Brian.”

He frowns, opting to ignore her statement. “So Miss Rogers…”


“Savannah, sorry, I’ve been sent to you today because my superiors have taken great interest in your remarkable abilities. We think you would eventually be a great asset to the United States if you were to work with us… of course you are a little young now, but your future could be very promising. How old did you say you were?”

“I didn’t”, Savannah hisses, “…but, I’m sixteen”.

“Yes, a couple years still, but you could really be a…”

“Be a what, a puppet to all you suits? Wouldn’t that just be ideal. What makes you think I’d want that? All you stuffshirts can’t think for yourselves...”.

Brian looks down, he had anticipated her resilience. He has successfully interrogated small time criminals and diabolical terrorists alike, yet he cannot work an angle with a high school sophomore. Time to change his tune. He pats his holster under his suitcoat, “What if I told you, you have no choice in the matter?”

She looks at him for the first time. Her split concentration places the hovering teacup onto the pyramid in an unstable position, and the weight shift causes the porcelain structure to teeter. She raises a thin and well trimmed eyebrow, “Are you threatening me?”

“We like to call it forceful negotiation”, Brian smirks in victory of earning her attention. “I’ve cracked eggs a lot harder than you Miss Ro…”

A shattering sound of the most recently placed teacup breaks his pitch. Shards fly about the room, none hitting either person. Savannah grins, “I could do that to your skull before you got that gun out of your coat”.


“Try me”

“I’m a pretty fast shot”

Savannah curls her lip and ruses, “What’s that called when you target practice those thingies that get launched in the air?”

“You mean skeet shooting?”

“Yeah that. Are you good at that?”

“Well I don’t mean to brag but I scored highest in my… HEY!” A teacup-turned-projectile from the top of the pyramid smashes on the wall behind Brian. Savannah chuckles, and sends another projectile from her pile of ammunition. The cup soars with the speed of a major league fast ball, Brian nearly ducks in time. “What the... HEY... stop it!”

SMASH. SMASH, SMASH. SMASH. Brian retreats to the door, with his suit coat pulled over his head. “We’ll talk again later Savannah”, he shouts over the sound of the breaking teacups, then hastily takes his leave.

The room is again silent.

“Later, asshole”.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The Protection Amulet (3 word Wednesday - jolt, ribbon, zeal)

A Jamaican native man of about thirty years takes a seat at an outdoor café. "Jus’ watah foh me ma'am", he explains to the elder waitress. He stares into the ocean scenery before him, slowly running his hand over his tight braided corn rows. The waitress returns with both his water, as well as the company he has been waiting to meet. The notion is not hidden that he is more happy to see the water than the caucasian woman before him.

“Dean Damasco?”, the woman smiles and extends a hand. Dean looks onward to the calm blue water without looking at her, “yes, take a seat ma’am.” The young woman fixes the skirt of her polished white business suit before taking the seat across from him. She immediately thinks she overdressed for this meeting after seeing that Dean is wearing a faded tank top and oversized bathing trunks. She pushes her brown hair behind her ear and introduces herself, “Hi, Jill Shaunessy.”

“Yes, I know who yoo’ar”, Dean turns his head slowly towards her, revealing an intricate tattoo spanning from his right cheek to his ear, a labyrinth of black ink deters her eyes from his. Jill blinks and fixes her glasses, “I wanted to know more about…”

“Aye Zeal I know watt ya want ma’am. Yoo tink yoo ar’ready ta learn”, Dean takes a sip of water while Jill processes his thick accent, “Watt makes ya tink dat Zeal?”

“I was… contacted. I mean, I had a supernatural encounter. Most people think I am a loony, but I sought you because I know you would understand." Dean squints at her; she is not the only one having troubles with accents. Jill wonders if “loony” means the same thing in Jamaica as it does in England. Dean leans back in his chair, “Right right Zeal, so yoo see a spirit an’ now you come ta Jamaica, land of da voodoo foh answers”, Dean makes a hand gesture that implies ‘Behold, the marvelous Jamaica’. Dean glares through Jill like a fox preparing to decapitate a hen, “Yoo’ar dealing wit powers beyond yor imagination Zeal. Ar’ yoo absolutely sure yoo want to be tested?”

Jill looks at Dean with a focused stare that tells him she will not succumb to his intimidation, “I am, sir.”

“Fine, did yoo meet my messenger?”

“I did.”

“An’ did he tell yoo ta come prepared?”

“He did.”

“Well, les see watt yoo haf.”

Jill pulls a necklace out from under her blazer and proudly displays it before Dean. Dean examines a few strands of dried grass woven together with dull beads and plastic toy proxies of gems alternating in orderly fashion, with small pink ribbon tied into bows on either end of the beads. Dean chuckles, to him this looks like an attempt to make something recklessly made into something pretty and feminine.

”Dat, dat is yor protection amulet?”, he scoffs.

“It’s not my best work I suppose, but I am new to this”, Jill defiantly stands behind her creation.

“If yoo will, please grab on to tha edge of tha table, ma’am."

Jill frowns and follows his suggestion. Dean extends an open hand to her and mutters some words in a language Jill does not recognize. She feels a sudden jolt of crushing pain from within her torso. Jill gasps for air but feels as if she is taking in water. Her arms flail wildly and she spasms back and forth in the chair, finally falling to the ground. Sweating and shaking, she feels as if another being had passed right through her. The spasms cease as quickly as they had begun. Jill breathes heavily, unable to focus her vision, and too weak to sit upright. Dean stands over her with a patronizing expression, “Even a simple protection amulet would haf repelled dat strike. Yoo’ar a cub among tigers. Yoo’ar not ready.”

Dean finishes his water and leaves the café.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

The house project (3 word Wednesday - drain, epic, nibble)

Motivation has set in. A couple delivery guys just left my house, leaving behind a brand new black stove and refrigerator. The pristine new appliances in my kitchen make the remainder of the room look drab and outdated. My eyes dreadfully fall upon my dishwasher. Though the new arrivals now match this old machine, the dishwasher has not been functional in nearly three years. I had a plumber called out to the house last year for a separate issue; I asked for him to fix the dishwasher while on the property, but due to time restraints he only assessed the situation. After dismantling the kick plate and scanning the undercarriage, he concluded that I needed to simply replace the drain pipe. Pop that out, put a new one in, that’s that. He looked me up and down, seeing I am physically able to get down onto the floor and back up again, and claimed this job was a “do-it-yourselfer”. I think he just did not want to be bothered in hindsight.

Anyways, I had let this task sit on the back burner too long. Our stove was too slow to heat, due to its age. It had to go. Two weeks ago, the refrigerator compressor stopped doing what refrigerator compressors do. It also had to go. Now here we were with two new sparkling kitchen toys, and a shoddy dishwasher between them. No longer, I think. I roll up my sleeves. I’m going for the hat trick, three working appliances. It is inept handy man versus neglected dishwasher. It’s on like Donkey Kong.

I drive to the local Home Depot, select a universal dishwasher cable, and return home with both the item and a full stomach of fast food. I dislodge the kick plate, and with a struggle I separate the drain pipe from the undercarriage. Comparing like for like, I soon realize my hasty selection from Home Depot will not match. Ugh. Figures. An experienced plumber would have brought the necessary parts with him. I don’t want to take a slimy rubber hose with me to the hardware store. It has been inactive long enough to collect mildew. Gross. I’d wash my hands but the water main is off. An experienced plumber would have gloves on. God, I hate house projects.

I sit on the floor and dwell in my newbie errors. Determined, I thump the face of the dishwasher, “This is not over. You will not win.” I retrieve my digital camera. I snap a half dozen photos, of the connection, of the drain pipe, the clamps that kept it all together, the bent part of the rubber pipe that was dented with nibble marks from a mouse that was long ago claimed to one of my house cats. Equipped with camera, the “universal dishwasher cable”, and my keys, I am off to Home Depot once again.

A bald middle-aged employee is discussing gas pipes with another customer as I arrive in the plumbing department. He seems to be blowing his credentials up his audience’s ass, “I’m certified to work on plumbing and gas powered equipment… I installed these things for years…blah blah blah.” I peer around the two men at the wall of piping. Before I know it, the voice of the bald employee speaks clearly in my direction, “how may I help you?”

I explain the chain of events up to this point, and I reveal my camera. “Ooo, pictures, exciting”, he says. I flip the photos back and forth, at one point flipping too far and quickly changing the photo back before the guy could make out the picture of the KC and the Sunshine Band concert. “I know exactly what you need!”, the man speaks with excitement and leads me over to another aisle, all the while giving his credentials routine. He hands me three items; a 6 foot portion of rubber tubing, and 2 connector “mouthpiece” things. He instructs how to connect everything together. This goes do that, that goes to the dishwasher, that’s that. Uh huh. For a second I think this guy might have been my plumber last year.

I exchange my first purchase for the new equipment and head home. I tape the new rubber tube to the old one, and, regretting my fast food lunch, contort myself into yoga-like positions to snake the tube from garbage disposal to dishwasher. Satisfied with my progress, I connect the mouthpiece parts to both ends, tightening clamps with a flathead screwdriver that I only managed to jab into my fingertips twice. I enable the water main, crossing fingers, and no leaks. I activate the dishwasher, thinking I probably should have killed the power to it before any of my dishwasher surgery commenced. Another newbie error. Oh well, I luckily avoided electrocution despite entangling the flathead screwdriver in the electric wires beneath the dishwasher. I examine my work, no leaks, even with the dishwasher starting its cycle! I tap the dishwasher, I told you I would win.

To the experienced plumber, this task would be “all in a day’s work”. To me, the victory is an epic feat. My wife agrees when she hears about my day, knowing I am typically too clumsy and impatient, and such a task would be one I would not take on alone. She proudly offers to take me for some dinner. Sounds great, this adventure has been exhausting. As we get in the car, she asks, “Do you know what is wrong with the washing machine?”

God, I hate house projects.