The Gift

A Locked Box

The man who taught me martial arts once gave me a box. A locked box to be precise but he did not give me the key. He told me that inside the box was something I would love and that would change my life, but I had to wait for 1 year top get the key for my next birthday. In the meantime, I should try and guess what was in the box.

At first I guessed the mundane things one might initially think of . . . money . . . treasure . . . a wide variety of material things. Then, I started to let my mind wander and began to imagine all kinds of fanciful things that might be hidden within the box. Secret and unexplainable things filled my mind . . . it could be anything within the box. There was no way of knowing. It was like some mirror view Schrodinger’s cat . . . it was nothing and anything all at once. Physics and pragmatism gave way to impossible possibilities and I imagined things that I could not even describe.

A year later he kept his word and offered me the key. I declined it. . . I knew what he had given me, I didn’t need to look in the box to see. He had given me dreams. . .

Monday coffee thoughts…

matter of perspective
Monday thought

Something I was thinking about while sipping coffee this morning

Politics and getting out tough stains

infomercial picture

So. . .maybe it is just me but it seems like things have changed. We used to listen to political leaders for speeches that were inspiring, well written, and profound. They were things that school children would later have to memorize in some public speaking class.

Now. . .it kind of reminds me late night infomercials. Every candidate, no matter what party or level of office could, at any point in time, pull out a rotisserie or box of stain busting laundry powder and I would not be surprised at all. I actually would find it oddly comforting because then at least I would know what all the shouting was about. Hell, everyone wants their wash to come out cleaner and their chicken to be roasted to perfection.

Now?

Its just kind of up in the air why everyone on all sides is so angry. At least the other way we get cleaner clothes and a good meal out of it. . .

Steam Punk Font

PNG Steam Punk Font
Theme Punk Themed Font Set

I created a steam punk themed PNG font I sell on Etsy. I don’t know why but I have always been fascinated with the Steam Punk type of artwork. Its like a metaphor for life really. . .everything really is a machine. Our bodies. . .the bird flying by. . .that leaf. . . all machines in one way or another and the idea that things could be built out of watch parts. . .that is just too cool for words. It may not be “true” steam punk to zealots but. . .I like it.

 

You can find it on Etsy at

https://www.etsy.com/listing/254791366

 

Flash Fiction – Creating a Character

This is my flash fiction bit for the Creating a Character topic. . . .something rather normal. . . I noticed everyone was creating dynamic characters and I thought I’d try and create a very normal one. . .to the extreme. From the Flash Fiction Challenge:

http://terribleminds.com/ramble/2015/08/21/flash-fiction-challenge-time-to-create-a-character/

 

Bob is a normal guy . . . amazingly and mind numbingly normal actually. He is so ordinary that there is nothing to really point out about him that would distinguish him in any way from anyone else. He is of average height, normal weight that fluctuates within normal seasonal parameters. He has very non-descript looking hair that is always cut in a very normal fashion and even when he tries to do something different, it seems he only does what lots of others are doing and it remains totally average. At work people barely notice him at all. When asked they would be more likely to recall his desk and chair as obstacles rather than remember the man sitting in them. Bob was just terminally normal.

Then one day Bob woke up at his regular time and proceeded to begin his typical routine. As he began to lather his face to shave Bob suddenly realized that he was so amazingly normal and bland, he could no longer even see himself in the mirror. He was simply not there anymore. Which, he thought to himself, was pretty much normal, all things considered.

The Sound of Thunder

The sound of thunder. It is calming to me. The sound of relief, cooling, the promise that the heat of the day will soon fade. The world grows calm as the noise creeps closer. The bamboo stills and it is like the entire world is holding its breath. Butterflies hurry off to that secret place they hide. Birds quiet. The air so still. . . then more distant thunder, closer. The promise of the rain a tease as everything waits and hopes. The bamboo fidgets and my imagination gives them motivation like some eager toddlers waiting for Christmas morning, unable to stay perfectly still they twitch in expectation. Then a squall of the wind from the coming storm sets the bamboo to action. No longer toddlers, they are a raucous group flailing about, banging and clapping together in the excitement. Like some concert crowd, they clap and bap in some alien rhythm in time with some music only they can hear.

How many days of my life have I heard all this and never really heard it?

Some days remind me that the world is alive.

The first drops are falling. Tapping on metal and awning, tickling the world with the start of the rain.

The thunder is closer.

The cats are freaking out.

Soon the world around me will be washed.

The air cleansed of the oppressive heat.

The bamboo dancing in the wind will be soaked and will drip water for the rest of the night.

Sometimes I forget that it is not the rain I love so much, it is not the thunder. It is the way the storm changes the world. The way it makes everything seem new again for just a little while. That is why the sound of thunder is calming to me. It is a promise of change.

 

Things Forgotten

Things Forgotten
Things Forgotten

The Man, The Word, and Reason #678 I am going to hell

I once knew a man who had difficulty with words but didn’t know this fact. Truth be told, he found himself to amazingly witty and articulate. This same man bragged about having never read a book and still passing school because he must be some kind of special genius or something. He would blog periodically, angrily expounding upon ideas with a flat, bludgeoning wit that would pulverize any point he was trying to make into a wet, gooey mass of convoluted ideas and overly simplified logic.

All of this though was fairly acceptable especially in this day and age when using text speak is considered so acceptable that the president and our political leaders use an ever growing code of acronyms rather than take the extra 5 seconds to type a word. So if they do that, I could not fault this man for his cumbersome and somewhat bovine ranting. Except one thing. . . one very important thing that I tried to explain to him several times but he would not listen to my logic because he was, after all, a self edumacated genius-sort.

His problem was the lack of understanding between two words that may look somewhat similar at first glance are very different indeed. The words were Irreverent and irrelevant. Thinking he was saying that he was rude, off the wall, and caustic in his wording, i.e. irreverent, he would instead use the word meaning immaterial, extraneous, of no real consequence, irrelevant. So phrases such as:

“Some people say I am irrelevant and god damn it, I agree. I speak my mind and say what I think and what I think is a lot of the time irrelevant.”

I would try and explain to him and he would lash out that just because he didn’t have fancy words, he still had an opinion that he was free to voice whenever he wanted and if people found him irrelevant, so be it, that was on them. He liked being irrelevant and enjoyed shocking people with just how irrelevant he could be.

So the moral of the story is, sometimes spell checker is not enough, especially if you are a moron. There should be a moron checker that goes beyond there, their, they’re and to, too, two. . .then again. . .maybe not. Maybe these types of idiots are here as a divine “pull my finger” joke by god. Last time I talked to the man I suggested that he was irrelevant and that he should put in his will that he wanted that in big, huge letters on his gravestone when he dies. “HERE LIES A MAN WHO WAS TOTALLY IRRELEVANT”. He agreed, he liked that idea. . .

. . .And this is reason #678 that I am going to hell.

Flash Fiction – July 24th – Essay

This week’s flash fiction from Chuck Wendig’s Blog is an essay on why I write. . .what makes me a writer? What compels and drives me to do this? In contemplation of this I have come to understand something about myself hitherto unknown or at least unspoken. I am not a writer.

I am a storyteller.

Writing is one version of this but I also enjoy telling stories orally. My artwork tells a story . . .at least it does when it turns out right. That is what compels me, the need to tell stories. Though, I will admit, the “I can tell stories through interpretive dance” thought line was a bad idea from the get-go and I do apologize for that, it won’t happen again.

The reason why I write is that it is one way of telling stories and a way I can tell the stories to as many people as possible. So then, the question is not “why I write” for me but rather what drives me to tell stories? The answer to that is rather simplistic and straightforward. I tell stories because it makes me happy to tell stories.

The why’s and how-comes of that would keep a therapist in business for years trying to untangle. Was it a lack of attention when I was a child or a sense of narcissistic egotism that makes me feel that my stories are so important they must be told? I don’t know. One thing I have learned is that sometimes, it doesn’t matter why, it simply is what it is.

I write because I want to share my stories.

Where I get the stories is something I don’t know. My mind just works that way, it creates even when I don’t try and create. It fabricates from things I see ideas of what could be or what might be hidden right behind plain view. It just happens. It is just who I am. There is no poetics to it, just a simple fact of me. It is just how my mind works

So the final answer would be, I write because that is what I do. The why of it doesn’t matter except to my therapist. I do it because that is who I am.

Though I do feel in a strange way that I should now stand up and say, “Hi, my name is David. I’m a writer.” And wait for the twelve step crowd to welcome me. . .

Who am I writing for?

That is the question that has been bothering me for the past few days. . . just who am I writing for?

This is a question that has gotten into my mind the past few days because at 25k into my novel  I am reading it and realizing I may or may not continue reading on from that part. I might not even make it that far. While the story is good, the dialog witty. . .I am writing for someone else.

So I am left wondering if maybe I just have not found my voice yet. Pounding out more writing will help with that but I am also left with a nagging feeling that I have been writing for someone else. It reminds of something Neil Gaiman said in his speech (Which is really awesome and worth watching)  “Make Good Art”: The only projects he regrets are the ones he did for a reason other than really wanting to do them. That he writes things he wants to write so even if they fail, he still has the fulfillment of having written what he wanted to write.

So I am looking over what I have written and am left wondering if I am writing for me or for some idea of what some unnamed reader might like and buy.

So, lesson of the day, write for me. Combining that with the lesson before I am not going to restart, but from this point forward it will be what I dig. I will go back and renovate the rest later, redo it all if I have to. But from this point forward in my book, it will be shit I dig and how I dig it and fix the rest when I get done.