Category: scrap

A Passing View


Outside it is cold, and I am weeping.

The cameras near as I pound the cobblestones with clenched fists.

My mother is dead: There were no doctors to save her from the tumour which consumed her leg, then her life.

My father is dead: At thirty, he appeared fifty, and at fifty, he seemed one-hundred.

My brother is lost: It is easier to think of him as only missing, although there are few doubts as to his fate.

Winter has come, and the Great Leader is gone.

Inside I am warm, and there is laughter.

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A Quick Mulligan

MulliganJust a short item I tweeted earlier – it doesn’t really fit into a Sunday Summary, but I thought Flashers might find it interesting.

You might also call this the unstated ending of the last story arc, involving the Sweet family.

We haven’t seen the last of those miscreants, however.!/JRDSkinner/status/81783957498232832

Everything Old Is New Again

War of the Worlds by Robert Czarny
This post owes its existence entirely to a suggestion made by Barry, of

* * *

The horizon crackled with the light of flame.

Gathered on a hill overlooking Grover’s Mill, New Jersey, a crowd – many with blankets draped over their shoulders to fend off the October chill – were waiting to see if the world might end.

The loudspeakers rigged at the edges of the mob sometimes brought the flat tone of a newsman, and sometimes the sharp bark of military communications.

Across the empty fields, a massive, unearthly, machine strode over the autumn grasses.

Finally, after all others seemed to have uttered their strangled death rattles into their mics, a single voice continued on, chronicling the last moments of the invasion.

The alien tripod stumbled, leaned drunkenly, then collapsed.

Orson Welles, dead a hundred years, gave a cheery warning that the production was meant only as Halloween tomfoolery, and the holographic projectors began to cycle down.

The defeated extraterrestrials shimmered into non-existence.

With the flaming country-side once again dark, the crowd began to disperse.

Young Orson Welles, from the Orson Welles Annex (click for link)

The War of the Worlds (October 30, 1938)

Reservoir Poker

The outside of the place was choked in the scent of stale urine – I was relieved to be smothered in cheap cigar smoke as the door clicked shut behind me.

At the end of a long hall I brushed a bead curtain aside, slid a tentative foot into the room.

Suddenly everyone was sitting at attention.

“We don’t like your kind here.” The hairy one growled, his eyes glittering.

“Uh,” I responded, my tongue having stalled.

“Hey – I said it was time to take a walk.” He leaned forward, his pipe shaking between his teeth.

I quickly considered trying to make friends, but a look around the room made it clear no one wanted to shake.

“I’ll let myself out.”

Dogs Playing Poker

scrap, 2006, let's see

There’s a short hallway at the top of the stairs. The walls are filled with framed newspaper clippings, all starring the same starchy lady holding the diner’s pride, a burger larger then your head. Really the clippings are just there to act as landing lights for the drunks trying to find the washroom. I, like most of the clientele, have stumbled into this place seeking salty food. Being the only 24 hour eatery in a college town’s sea of bars makes it a pretty popular place.

The problem with the hallway is that it has a blind turn onto the staircase at the end of its run, a hall that’s already barely wide enough to steer down when you’ve had a couple of wobbly pops. I can only assume collisions like mine are pretty common, at least after midnight.

So I knock a pregnant lady down a staircase. What the hell was she doing out at that hour anyhow? We both got lucky, but it was before she’d even finished her backbone slide down the stairs that I noticed something funny: a man with a very round face was watching me instead of the expectant tumbler. To be fair the whole restaurant was taking in the action below the banister, but while most of the patron’s eyes seemed to be viewing a very lopsided tennis serve, the man with the round face locked eyes with me from beneath a retro ‘Drink Cola!’ poster.