A short short story about a man who rested his eyes and woke up as a pod person

rest my eyes

“Just – resting – my eyes … I’ll do it after I – rest – my – eyes –”

He slept, and when he awoke, he was a pod person. His soul had withered and died in the night.

And he lived unhappily ever after.


“What kind of a story is THAT?!”

“Well – it might be a real one. You know the old proverbs about folding your hands for a little sleep …”

“What proverbs are those?”

“Oh, look them up.”


Civilization as we know it is a blinding LED light

Young adults using smartphones as they are walking outdoors

“I think I’ll check my –”


“I’ll just take a minute –”


“What if somebody asked a –”


“You don’t even know what I’m doing.”


“Yes, but –”


“Why are you –”

Once upon a time, people feared we were becoming zombies because we sat in front of TV screens so much. But then we got little screens to carry in our pockets. And the zombification REALLY began.

Photo © Rawpixelimages | Dreamstime.com

The trope of the horribly wrong

horribly wrong

A nerdy science student is bitten by a radioactive spider. A scientist rescues a kid from a nuclear bomb test site but is irradiated by the explosion. A family tests a spaceship and flies through a gamma-ray cloud.

Scientists try something and it goes horribly wrong. It’s the quintessential superhero origin story. And supervillains, too, come to think. Continue reading “The trope of the horribly wrong”

When good metaphors go bad

lemon dreamstime_s_19856851

When life hands you lemons, make lemonade. What if you don’t like lemonade? Make lemon meringue pie.

Hey, what’s wrong with lemons anyway? I know, I know, it’s a metaphor, because lemons have a sour taste. What if you like sour? It makes things tangy, and tangy is good, right? What if when life hands you lemons, you think, “Oh boy! Lemons add zing to life. Lemon and lime together make a refreshing drink. Lemon has a lovely fresh aroma. Thank you so much for this lemon.”

The metaphor depends on the premise that a lemon is sour and unpleasant. If you happen to like lemons, so much the better. The whole point is sometimes life is out of your control, so make the best of it. You can’t control what life hands you, not all the time, but you have some measure of control over your reaction. When life hands you poop, look for the pony. When life hands you ick, look for the silver lining. And hope it’s not made of mercury.

On what comes next

2946 on what comes next

Next …

Always what’s next …

It’s good to have a next, you know.

Finished is better than good – but good is important – so make it as good as you can, but don’t try so hard to make it good that you never finish. Projects get finished. Finish what you start. Fix it later, or live with the flaws, but finish.

And then move on to the next. It’s good to have a next.

Where true intelligence lies

cat and dog

If a black cat and a golden dog can lie down face to face and enjoy each other’s company, why oh why is it so hard for homo sapiens? We are the same species, for crying out loud.

Of all the stupid things that make me question whether humanity really is the most intelligent of the beasts, this is near the top.

“Top of the food chain” doesn’t necessarily translate to “smartest.”

The fun of being good

Found in, of all places, a 100-year-old poetry textbook:

being goodNothing gives a man more happiness than the expression of that which is best in himself. Nothing, to speak colloquially, is more fun than being good.

Let a man once get a good strong taste of any particular virtue and know what it is like to practice it and the chances are that he will enjoy it so much that Satan will have little power over him with the opposite vice. That man will have to be tempted in another way.

When a rich man gives away large parts of his fortune in philanthropics of one kind or another, he is enjoying the virtue of generosity. When a man who could earn an excellent living in business continues to preach and teach at a low wage, he is enjoying his self-abnegation.

The virtue which we have tried, the virtue in which we believe, that alone will content us. And it is only the person who has never made a fair trial of “being good” in one way or another, who does not like it.

To be sure it is not always easy to be good in a world where goodness does not altogether control the popular imagination and where it is not always understood. But that fact makes it the more interesting.

— Marguerite Wilkinson