short stories

Pass me the sugahh!

March 4, 2014:

Day 2 of #CoffeeProblemz

Upon confirmation from a roommate who shares the cream, it may not have turned. This could be true, as the new cream has yielded a similar taste in the coffee. And it’s fresh. I’ve also changed the coffee altogether. Brand new beans, freshly grounded, brewed and mixed with untainted dairy.

Still. The taste.

With each sip, my pallet painstakingly scours for the flavor revelation that will indicate what is off about this particular cup of joe. I know it’s not the container. After yesterday morning’s mishap, I rinsed out the trusty Thermos and refilled with some cool, refreshing H2O to wash out that undesired bitterness. May as well have been drinking from the open spring of Mount Monadnock Herself.

I am scientific in my approach to isolate the cause. It’s not the container; it’s neither the coffee nor the cream. This leaves only the water used to brew said cup and the maker responsible for the brewing. Did someone run dish soap and hot water through a brew to clean it out? Perhaps the sudsy residue is causing that base taste. Could the old city pipes dispensing that tap water have rusted over, shedding flakes of oxidized metal into the flow, hardening the liquid into an unhealthy concoction…

Oh, wait…

Could someone pass me the sugar?

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short stories, Uncategorized, Verse

A short and bittersweet jar o’jam…

Life, as defined by Facebook, LinkedIn & Twitter

Facebook is for the Family Man… or Woman. Sorry, ladies. “Family Man” is an age-old expression that just sounds better than “Family Woman.” Yet, I assure you. You come first in every other aspect of my life.

LinkedIn, indifferent to personal conquests, chronicles the scope of someone’s professional career. Think of Résumé 2.0.

Twitter is where I want to be. It wears down an identity against the whetstone cacophony of tweets, some good, some bad, but mostly forgettable fireflies.

Fireflies, a.k.a. lightning bugs, are Mark Twain’s metaphor for the uniquely human expression of verbal and written language.

The Great American Author once said, “The difference between the right word and the almost-right word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug.”

Most tweets extract the everyday molasses of non-happening that fill our incongruous expanse of time.

Wading through that gooey minutia, sometimes we trap the elusive lightning in opportune bottles, before the fleeting, syrup-sweetening instances fizzle into the ether.

Our Mason jar memories capture those chance occurrences—some would call serendipitous occasions, those with faith might say “divine interventions”—that crystallize the stories articulating our lives. In short, an…

#Extractualization

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short stories

The task atop the mountain

Three men stood at the foot of the Mahalangur Himal range, nested among the Himalayan Mountains, its peaks shrouded in clouds. This range housed Mt. Everest, the Himalayas’ highest point, yet these three weren’t just seeking the physical pinnacle; they sought to achieve a heightened state of mind and spirit.

Without hesitation, they proceeded to hike to the summit of Earth’s apex. Though they could not see their destination, all three strided confidently with the knowledge that, at this ceiling of reality, sat His Holiness the Honorable Shinrashanrakar, surrounded in a marble shrine that put the Taj Mahal to shame.

A day and a night of vertical traversing passed. They only stopped for several hours to sleep. The mental and physical exertion, the thinning air that nipped at their extremities, and lack of adequate sustenance soon began to take their toll.

Then hope. Upon a cliff, nature’s gable, thick in the fog of the high-altitude stratosphere, the ground leveled. They each firmly set their hiking boots into the solid ground.

No more need for climbing. They could finally walk.

Their pain was further alleviated at the sight of the mile-long shrine, off on the horizon. What seemed like a rather large entrance, from a squinting distance, grew greater still as they approached the intimidating edifice. When they arrived at the marble steps of the great temple, the actual size of the door exceeded any of the three’s wildest estimates. Alan, considered to be the most clever of the three, compared its ominous size to a gerth fit to plug the famous Arc de Triomphe, in Paris, France. His was a modest estimate.

After several moments standing in awe of the giant arching oak doors, Victor the largest of the three, a towering 6’7″ and 300 pounds of solid muscle, stepped ahead to heave them open. On the other side, a mile-long hand-woven red carpet lied before the gentlemen. And they began to walk it, barefoot. Luckily, Alan caught sight of a sign just on the other side of the doors that read, in all languages of the World, Please leave your shoes by the entrance. Thank you. As they walked, their toes brushed over the finely fashioned threads, which formed intricate designs and painted pictures in their minds’ eyes.

Finally, they approached HH Shinrashanrakar. This earthbound demigod assumed an altar atop a 10-foot pedastal. His flowing hair and beard draped halfway down the column, intertwining with his silk robes that continued downward still, nearly reaching the carpeted marble floor. He could only pick one man to bestow his wealth of knowledge he had sustained for nearly 80 years. He, therefore, asked each of them a question.

“What do you wish to be?” he said, to no one in particular.

Alan the shrewdest, suavest of the three spoke. He figured acting first could be strategic.

“I want to be a shark, a Great White, nature’s perfect hunter. They’ve evolved over millions of years to thrive and thrash toward exacting their goal. If you pick me, I will attack the task with the determination and precision of the Great White.”

HH peered deeply into Alan’s eyes. He saw only truth and nodded slowly and gently. His eyes blinked ever so slightly.

Victor, ever the competitor, wasted no time in seizing the opportunity to top the clever Alan.

“Well I would embody an amazing Orca,” he blurted, “the ‘Killer Whale.’ And I would hunt this supposed nature’s perfect hunter. I would find the Great White and I would eat him. I would then exist as an even greater being, having defeated that shark, its energy in my belly. Then only I would be have the power to carry out your task.”

HH received Victor’s words in the same manner he had Alan’s, though he lingered for less time on Victor. The hulk’s confident delivery required less convincing.

Several minutes passed by in silence. At last, HH the Honorable Shinrashanrakar turned to the third man. He repeated his question.

The man paused for effect. Then he figuratively and firmly held the heavy marble floor.

“I apologize for the delay,” he said. “Where I come from, it’s good form to wait until the host speaks to his guest. Although, in that time, I did have some time for reflection of my predecessors’ responses. And they added electricity to the brainstorm, which I will now detail to you, your Holiness.

“When I heard the Killer Whale’s response, I had a tough time imagining an animal or a force larger than that mighty sea mammoth. Sure there’s the Blue Whale. I suppose it could swallow the Orca whole, but what would that really prove? I doubt that it could more adequately carry out whatever you wish us to do. And then I thought of your question, which you just kindly repeated to me after the many moments from your original inquiry. You said ‘What,’ which doesn’t necessarily limit the options to animals. In fact, of all of the interrogative pronouns, ‘what’ implies the most possibility. And that’s when I could smell the salty air and hear heavy waves crashing. I flew on the body of an impetuous underwater tsunami. I crashed against mountains and roared tide in and tide out. I touched the seven continents simultaneously and felt the souls of every lifeform in me. I thought of the Great White Shark and the Orca swimming on my deepwater currents. If I wanted, I could swallow them in a downward funnel or I could whip and tumble them until they washed ashore. But then I realized I would exist whether they swam or not and I decided to let them be. They could even help me in the task at hand. This task that I would perform as the mighty Ocean.”

The old wise man slowly closed his eyes. He inhaled in long, deep breaths through his nostrils and then exhaled, slower still, through his mouth now, which looked like a tiny ‘o.’ Ocean could see Shrinrashanrakar’s eyes beneath his lids moving rapidly. The REM (rapid eye movement) reminded Ocean of walking barefoot along the carpeted mile to the wise man’s throne.

Then, His Holiness spoke. His eyes still closed.

“You three have certainly offered interesting answers to the question I presented. You seemed to have given your responses thought and you delivered them with great command of the English language. Yet, none of you knew for which task I had intended. How could you know what you wish to be without knowledge of the matter at hand?”

Ocean, formerly feeling confident in his answer, now saw how he and his traveling companions had failed in their responses to HH Shinrashanrakar. Ocean’s shoulders sank. His chest, formerly puffed outward, now returned to its concavity.

Shinrashanrakar opened his eyes and continued.

“All three of you mentioned great beings that could each perform amazing things, provided the situation suited their natures. Although, what if the task was to ascend to the summit of a great mountain? Why, none of you would be here right now, would you? Alan as the shark, Victor as the orca, and Ocean as, well, the ocean. None of you could climb this summit as these beings. You made it just fine, as the men I see before me. So I ask you again, What do you wish to be?”

Ocean, standing between Victor and Alan, looked from side to side. Neither of them seemed ready to speak, shifting in their stance. Their eyes oscillated, searching desperately inward upon their minds for an answer to the wise man’s reiterated question. Perhaps another question was, in fact, the solution, Ocean thought.

“Your Holiness,” Ocean said, the ‘ness’ from ‘Holiness’ echoed off the marble walls and floors of the shrine. “I see where we three have gone wrong now. We may have jumped hastily into an answer, without first acquiring all of the necessary information. You asked us what we wished to be. Well, what are the circumstances of our existence?”

Shinrashanrakar’s eyes sparkled at Ocean’s inquiry.

“Ahh…,” His Holiness’s eyes grew wide as he pointed his left index finger upward toward the ornate ceiling painted to look like the infinite space of an indigo sky.

“Shark, Orca, do you see what Ocean has realized here?”

Alan and Victor locked eyes, each shaking his head. Then they both glared at Ocean with furrowed brows. Ocean was oblivious to their intimidation born of frustration; he hung in excited anticipation on Shinrashanrakar’s words.

“Ocean has revealed that being is entirely predicated upon the environment in which we are. Often, it is not the strongest or wisest being that excels in life. It is the being that is most suited for that time and place. So again, I ask you, What do you wish to be?”

Alan began to catch on. “What specific time and what particular place, your Holiness?” he said.

“A valid question, Shark, but one that I cannot answer. We are all merely human and none of us gods who can control when we will exist. We must, therefore, live in the time we are granted and make the most of it.”

“Well, I suppose this task that you require will somehow color our place in this world. If we knew more of this task, then we’d know which place, and then we would know how to exist in this place.”

“You have forgotten time, sir,” Shinrashanrakar said.

“Yes, and time… Although wouldn’t time be entirely contingent upon when we have to carry out this task?”

“Time is always under our control. It is contingent upon nothing. At every moment in our lives, we have the choice to act or not act. This is the rhythm of existence.”

“I thought you just said that we weren’t gods, that we could not control when we existed.”

“True, we cannot control when we are brought into this world. However, when we make an imprint upon the fabric of spacetime, we can control what ripples emit from our initial inception.”

“Forgive me, sir, but I’m confused,” Alan’s clever mind ran in circles. In silence, he over thought the oddity of time.

Victor then realized he hadn’t spoken in a while. A need to be heard bubbled in the pit of his diaphragm and errupted out his gruff throat.

“Your Holiness, let me see if I get this straight. We can’t control when we exist, but we can control when we act. And we can act in wherever place. So perhaps what Alan the Shark has neglected to address is where would this task occur?”

Shinrashanrakar arched his back and spread his knees outward across his red velvet pillow seat, with a silver trim that tassled at the pillow’s five corners. His body became a perfectly equilateral triangle. He tilted his head back slowly and then brought it back round to look Victor squarely in the face.

“The task is everywhere because it is nowhere,” he said. His lips formed a straight line across his mouth, nearly concealed in his bright, white beard. This subtle action signified his response was sufficient to Victor’s inquiry.

“Your Holiness, I too am confused,” Victor’s voice escalated. “You ask us what we wish to be. We tell you. Then you ask how can we know what we should be without knowing the time and place first. We ask you when and where and you say that these cannot be known. It seems we have reached in impasse.”

Ocean sensed the rising tension between the wise man and the Orca. However, HH Shinrashanrakar seemed unwavered in Victor’s words. The five-pointed pillow seat also served as a launch pad into what was now a deep meditative state. The corners of his mouth curled slightly upward, his eyes gently closed again. His entire disposition resembled one of those golden smiling Buddha statues. Complete. Content.

Ocean then whispered to his two traveling companions.

“Guys, I don’t think we can lose our cool with His Holiness. He seems to have shut down. If any of us want him to bestow his knowledge, we’re going to have to play along.”

At this, the two—the Orca and the Shark—let the Ocean once again hold the heavy marble floor.

“Sir, Your Holiness,” he spoke quietly, as if to lull the wise man gently back into consciousness. “We’re sorry if we have offended you. Victor… the Orca, he is passionate and just wants an answer—”

“—One needs patience for this task,” Shinrashanrakar’s eyes opened suddenly.

Ocean exhaled in relief. He had revived his ancient mentor from Victor’s verbal attack. Perhaps now they could get somewhere with what seemed to be an interrogation of a wise man.

“OK,” Ocean said. “So we’re learning more about this task. Time and place are important. We will need to be patient. But let’s get back to basics. I now know that we can’t know what we should be, until we know what we have to do. Before I tell you what I wish to be, let me first ask you, Your Holiness, what is the task that you require of us?”

“Ahhh…” that same sparkle returned to HH Shinrashanrakar’s eyes. It was as if Ocean’s gradual enlightenment reflected in the wise man’s dilated pupils.

“I thought you’d never ask.”

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short stories

New media, old establishment

To all of those stubborn newspaper readers/writers out there, playing violins with ink-stained thumbs on the Titanic of print journalism, as it plummets desperately into the unforgiving Atlantic Ocean…

The game has changed.

And this abrupt shift is not to spite old-fashioned journalism. There’s just a better, more efficient way of doing things now.

It would be impossible, downright assinine, to go back to the old ways. That would be like rubbing two sticks together to start a fire, when you know perfectly well that an orange BiC lighter, nestled snugly in your back pocket, fully fueled, will ignite at the stroke of that serrated sparkwheel.

I can say this because I studied journalism—multimedia journalism, in fact—at just the right time, when everything (and I mean EVERYTHING) was shifting. It felt like entering willingly into a black hole. The very fabric of my being has been altered at a fundamental level and I think we’re all still scrambling to collect some semblance of order in these volatile times.

Frankly, I don’t know where I’ll end up, at what corner of the Universe this black hole will take me. That’s part of the fun and what scares the living shit out of me. But I like my vantage point within the eye of the storm. From here, I can find peace and set aside a little time to tell you old-fashioned journalists the way it is, just like your beloved Walter Cronkite used to…

A brief history of a Web journalist

When I graduated from Stonehill College, in 2004, with a bachelor’s in philosophy, I had little to no idea of my place in the professional world. I took the first job I could, in finance. Needless to say, it was not for me.

After several years, a passion for writing emerged and I made the decision to leave my job and pursue this dream full-time. I enrolled in a master’s program at Emerson College, in the journalism department. My goal was to learn how to write professionally. They did coach us well in that capacity, but I learned very early on that the industry of journalism was changing. Online news had revolutionized the way we perceived the media. And Emerson, ever the savvy institution in communications, intended to prepare us for this new world.

Instead of only focusing on writing, they had to equip us with the knowledge of this digital landscape. In place of writing news story after news story, we took a crash course in news writing and then focused on how to create news packages that incorporated multimedia. At even the initial conceptual stage of a story, we had to perceive how it would appear on a news website.

These packages could include hyperlinks, graphics, video, sound, etc. Visitors not only read online news stories; they interacted with them. We had to consider these other corresponding components, as well, throughout the newsgathering and storytelling process. I suspected my study of writing suffered, but I remained open-minded.

After two years of intensive print and multimedia journalism, I was graduated from Emerson with a master’s in just that. Upon leaving, I took in as much experience as I could. I wasn’t sure where this experience would lead me.

I managed to land a job reporting for the Boston Herald. Then a chance ad I found on Twitter earned me a position updating Patriots.com.

Accumulating a diverse experience in all things media, old and new, I still could not focus.

The job market remained unpredictable.

When the Patriots’ 2010-11 season ended, I found myself unemployed and began applying to many jobs. I was lucky to come across an open position at Perkins School for the Blind, which needed a Web Content Writer. The requirements spoke to my experience, thus far, and I applied. Brandishing a broad base of Web writing experience to the hiring managers, I got the job.

It seemed as though I would primarily write, but when I arrived at the nation’s oldest school for visual impairment, in Watertown, Mass., the responsibilities included many other duties—running Perkins’ social media, laying out webpages in HTML code, formatting photos in PhotoShop and understanding functionality of the content management system. This job had quite the technical side, which I resisted at first. I thought of myself purely as a writer, but remained open-minded.

I developed these technical skills to complement my Web writing and, after a while, it made more sense that these were necessary for the role. Over time, I even developed a knack for creating dynamic webpages for Perkins.org and began focusing less on the copy. I regret this now because I believe it may have stunted my progression as a professional writer. I simply wasn’t practicing enough, as requests for e-marketing campaigns, technical troubleshooting, and initiatives from Perkins ever-expanding eLearning department abounded.

Then, suddenly, I found myself unemployed, once again.

Like a said earlier, I didn’t know where this worm hole would lead me. To what end?

About two years into the Web content writing role, the communications director made a drastic shift in organization. She dismantled the Web team, for whom I had formerly written Web content, and said I was now just a writer. That’s what she hired me for: to write! Apparently, the term “web content” that had initially modified my title of “writer,” now meant nothing.

Even though the rest of the world was moving on to the grander electronic platform, Perkins was content just rubbing two sticks together.

They didn’t need me anymore. It just didn’t make sense to me! What a waste of talent, expertise and intimate knowledge of the organization, I thought.

Then I found peace. (Perhaps centered once again in the eye of the new media storm.) I knew that truth does not always guide organizations, however big… or old, they may be.

People in the real world would evolve into new and exciting modes of interconnected perception. Yet Perkins would stay the same.

And that’s the way it is.

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short stories

Mediocre bad guys

If motivation was the key, then he had found it in revenge. Not the retaliation enacted on an enemy, the solace one attains by success in indifference to those who said otherwise of his skill, of his character and his ability. Thus, the motivation would propel him to create something of a masterpiece that defied all of these supposed critics’ expert opinions of excellence. His work exceeded their wildest notions of this ideal. In defiance and denial, they would say that his words made no sense to their “discernible” intellectual pallets. Although secretly, or subconsciously at least, they knew this misunderstanding only proved an inability to comprehend a truth beyond them.

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Profiles, short stories

Tugbato

tugbato

He arrived with the rain and the wind. He struck with the lightning and the thunder. The trees shook as he approached the tiny Nantucket island.

“Beware of the great and awful Tugbato!” Mother Nature wailed with each whirling gust.

He was a force cast from the deep, subterranean magma and forged into a Fu Manchu’d superhuman foaming with full-bodied ferocity.

“No more Tugbato!” the Nantucketers cried, curled up in their wood-shingled cottages. Their desperate pleas would land on deaf ears…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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See previous tweet…

Someone suddenly appeared at his doorstep. He never in fact saw this someone, just heard heavy footsteps creaking the weathered slats of his front porch. Perhaps a psychic, or maybe even a time traveler (if that’s possible), rapped on the large brass hanger that hung eye level on the monolithic frontdoor of his childhood home. The stranger left only a single business card, before disappearing as mysteriously as he had arrived. The boy of 12 slowly opened the door. Its hinges squeaked. And there, on the rough welcome mat, a tiny, neatly printed note.

The rather plain looking 2-inch by 3.5-inch piece of paper read:

Top tweets from mikedelrosso.com

Both hands clutched #burrito, while he spoke into #earbuds. He refused to let a phone #convo impede talking with a full mouth @bolococommons
@TeamCoco Boston is the Wolverine of American cities.”
@TheOnion In Focus: NBA Arrested For Marijuana Possession Onion.com
@natedog4th That pie’s gotta be cold by now!

The year: 1994. In the very first line, “mikedelrosso.com” resembled something he had seen on this brand new computer reality called “The Internet.” Yet he could not comprehend why his name appeared before the “DOT com.” The 12-year-old imagination ran wild on fresh Fresh Prince of Bel-Air episodes and an uncomplicated opinion of the opposite sex, igniting elaborately impossible scenarios. In 1994, these were perfectly viable universes.

The 12-year-old intellect then attempted an extrapolation of “@bolococommons.”

“Where is bolo- bolo- bolocommons?” he said. “Boloco Commons? Boloco on the Commons.” The imagination took it one step too far. “Boston Local Commons,” the 12-year-old said. “Oh, so they change Boston Common to ‘The Local Boston Commons.'” The odorless scent of humor wafted his 12-year-old nose.

He knew who Wolverine was. The early-’90s 12-year-old logged some serious hours watching Marvel’s animated X-Men TV show.

@TeamCoco needed some explaining. @ConanOBrien was barely causing ripples in the toilet, let alone lighting up the Nielson ratings, in 1994. And it would be a decade and a half before @tomhanks coined Conan as Coco.

He believed that the entire NBA had been arrested for marijuana possession, which was devastating. He was really into basketball that year. The 1980s-born @celtics dynasty had fallen, but the Chicago Bulls were about to conclude the athletic trilogy of a 3-peat. @Jumpman23 believed he could fly.

He read the last tweet.

He wondered, “Who was @natedog4th?”

Or was it Nate Dog IV? And why did he care how cold the pie was? If only, he could see the previous tweet.

Also, What is a tweet? he thought.

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short stories

Almost Funny

I love the Internet. If the Moon landing was “one giant leap,” then the World Wide Web is warp drive for mankind.

There are drawbacks. Social media, for instance. Twitter, YouTube, Facebook are killing our attention spans. It’s like fastfood information digesting into empty calories on our overactive “mental”-bolisms.

Many of my ideas grow from this byte-sized sustenance. They don’t burn like light bulbs; they flash in the pan and fizzle.

Comedian for an hour

One such idea possessed me to pursue standup. Hannibal Buress had tweeted a link to a recent morning show appearance. Before long, I was YouTubing every clip I could find of his standup.

 

 

Things that I know about comedy: A lot of comedians usually sculpt their act over a period of time. They perform in many clubs, in front of diverse crowds, until they’ve perfected their jokes. Then, when they have a solid six minutes or so (and if they’re lucky) they’ll get the chance to appear on television—a popular late-night show, for example.

As I was watching several of Hannibal’s sets, I started to get the rhythm and delivery down. I marveled at the way his material unfolded. I recognized recurring jokes and how he developed them. He is truly a master of his craft. After about 40 minutes or so of watching 5-to-10-minute clips, I decided to end the YouTube session with his first appearance on the Late Show with David Letterman. After his 6-minute set, which he had perfected over the various clips I had just watched him perform, I thought, “Great execution. He’s made it.”

Good enough for me.

To this day, I have no idea what it feels like to tell a joke in front of a crowd. I realize that’s a copout. To launch my own standup career just seemed too rigorous for my flabby mind.

And now nagging thoughts distract me… I wonder what people are doing on Facebook…

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short stories

The Ocean

Three men hike to the summit of a long and winding mountain. At this apex of the Earth, sits His Holiness the Honorable Shinrashanrakar, surrounded in a marble shrine that puts the Taj Mahal to shame. After several moments of standing in awe of the giant arching oak doors, Victor the largest of the three, a towering 6’7″ and 250 lbs. of solid muscle, steps ahead to heave them open. On the other side, a mile-long hand-woven red carpet lies before the gentlemen. And they begin to walk it, barefoot. They can feel the finely fashioned threads between their toes, which brush over the varying designs painting pictures in their minds’ eyes. Finally, they approach HH Shinrashanrakar. He can only pick one to bestow the wealth of knowledge he has sustained for nearly 80 years. He, therefore, asks them a question.

“What do you wish to be?”

Alan the shrewdest, suavest of the three speaks. He figures acting first could be strategic.

“I want to be a shark, a Great White, nature’s perfect hunter. They’ve evolved over millions of years to thrive and thrash toward exacting their goal. If you pick me, I will attack the task with the determination and precision of the Great White.”

HH peers deeply into Alan’s eyes. He sees only truth and nods slowly and gently. His eyes blink ever so slightly.

Victor, ever the competitor, wastes no time and seizes the opportunity to top the clever Alan.

“Well I would embody an amazing Orca, the ‘Killer Whale.’ And I would hunt this supposed nature’s perfect hunter. I would find the Great White and I would eat him. I would then exist as an even greater being, having defeated that shark, its energy in my belly. Then only I would be have the power to carry out your task.”

HH receives Victor’s words in the same manner he had Alan’s, though he lingers for less time on Victor. Victor’s confident delivery requires less convincing.

Several minutes pass by in silence. At last, HH the Honorable Shinrashanrakar turns to the third man. He repeats his question.

The man pauses for effect and then figuratively and firmly holds the heavy marble floor.

“I apologize for the delay. Where I come from, it’s good form to wait until the host speaks to his guest. Although, in that time, I did have some time for reflection of my predecessors’ responses. And they added electricity to the brainstorm, which I will now detail to you, your Holiness.

“When I heard the Killer Whale’s response, I had a tough time imagining an animal or a force larger than that mighty sea mammoth. Sure there’s the Blue Whale. I suppose it could swallow the Orca whole, but what would that really prove? I doubt that it could more adequately carry out whatever you wish us to do. And then I thought of your question, which you just kindly repeated to me after the many moments from your original inquiry. You said ‘what,’ which doesn’t necessarily limit the options to animals. In fact, of all of the interrogative pronouns, what implies the most possibility. And that’s when I could smell the salty air and hear heavy waves crashing. I flew on the body of an impetuous underwater Tsunami. I crashed against mountains and roared tide in and tide out. I touched the seven continents simultaneously and felt the souls of every lifeform in me. I thought of the Great White Shark and the Orca swimming on my deepwater currents. If I wanted, I could swallow them in a downward funnel or I could whip and tumble them until they washed ashore. But then I realized I would exist whether they swam or not and I decided to let them be. They could even help me in the task at hand. This task that I would perform as the mighty Ocean.”

mikedelrosso.com

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short stories

Timing is nothing…

Our top story tonight: time travel is impossible. Scientists at Stanford University have proven that time, in fact, does not exist. It turns out to be a built-in mechanism within the human brain that helps to make sense of our reality. It actually creates the construct for our perceivable world. Biologists in the Beckman Center for Molecular & Genetic Medicine have isolated the gene that spurs creation of this mechanism into our frontal lobe, which is responsible for the reasoning centers of our brain. Much like the heartbeat, this biological ticker moves at a metronome’s tempo, more precise than even the most highly tuned and advanced time-keeping computers to date. It is for this reason that, scientists believe, all living humanity feel that they share in a collective time, when, in fact, within each of the now over seven billion people inhabiting this planet, an individual and unique ticker keeps them in stride. These scientists also speculate that anomalies, like psychics, are able to tap into this temporal center of the brain, accelerating or decelerating it, rewinding it or replaying it like the controls of a DVR machine, to achieve a sense beyond the realms of everyday existence. So, though we can’t physically travel to a distant altogether separate point in time from the present, we can view potential outcomes via these mediums and even have intimate glimpses into our past.

More and more psychics emboldened by this newfound legitimacy, all corners of society have emerged from the wordwork seeking out their advice for what the not-too-distant future may hold. Their answers for the fields of technology, medicine and even the spiritual world of enlightenment seem like something out of a science fiction novel. Yet, for this reporter, it may be only a matter of “time” before I report these incidences as fact. Here’s some of the more shocking “pre”-news…

Our most profound report comes from Shirley Surely, a tarot card reader from Kenosha, Wisconsin. She predicts that the world’s increasing dependence and simultaneous development of the Internet will eventually give birth to an all-knowing God-creature at the precise point when the World Wide Web reaches the complexity capable of housing intelligent life. Where literally every aspect of society (and in some cases humanity) is controlled by this now omnipotent being, civilization will be at complete and utter mercy to its will. Let’s hope He or She is nice.

Other Internet pre-news includes a modern-day Dark Ages of Creation. As every seemingly perceivable concept can be published at the click of a button, in the open for all to see, everyone now lacks the discipline to cultivate original ideas, as they knowingly or unknowingly are just plagiarizing from some other sector of the Web. This constant “wired in” feeling has thus shut down the centers of the brain responsible for dreaming, drawing from the more natural truer realms of pure inspiration. In this possible future, the bright, city-cyberspace lights have drowned out our mystical stars of creativity in the distant night sky.

More on this story, at 11…

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