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”

Hobgoblins on Parade

dinosaur eye web

(With the usual thanks to H.L. Mencken)

He brushed aside the brush and peered into the clearing, not sure he could trust his eyes. Oh, nothing was wrong with his eyes, it’s just that they presented him with a sight that would be unbelievable except for the fact that, undeniably, the sight was there and his eyes were delivering an accurate picture of the clearing.

Plainly, he could see – well, the plain fact was that hobgoblins were swarming.

He couldn’t tell how many there were – after a certain quantity the actual number became irrelevant. It was enough to constitute a swarm, and perhaps five hobgoblins would be enough to subdue the average person. When five is enough, then it didn’t matter whether the clearing contained a platoon, a brigade or a regiment: It was simply more than enough to overcome his solitary soul. He was toast if he entered the clearing. He was toast if they saw him in the underbrush. He was, quite simply, toast. Continue reading “Hobgoblins on Parade”

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.

In which we tire of embracing the hatred and instead embrace puppies

trunk full of puppies

The world needs more puppies and fewer politicians. Politicians like to tell you they know better and the world should just do as they say. They fill the air with greenhouse gases and endanger every species.

Puppies, on the other hand, have no purpose other than to soothe the soul. They emit playful barks and wag their tails and are happy just to be alive and well and loving the fact that today is today and it’s like nothing they’ve ever seen before and holy moley is that my ball? Can I have it? Can I chase it? Yes, I’m going to get that ball unless a squirrel, because then I’ll chase the squirrel yes. Yes.

Puppies are all about yes. Politicians are all about no. Puppies are all about life. Politicians are all about do as I say or we’re all going to die. Puppies are all about freedom. Politicians are all about fear. and anger. and do as I say or else.

So, you go on about awful. Politicians have always been awful and trying to be more awful than any who came before, disguised as a rescuing hero which none of them will save your life.

Prattle on, prattle on, there’s a good sheep. As for me: Puppies!