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(Fark)   His prepositions are preposterous. His adverbs have an adverse effect on adjectives, and his cat has subjunctive claws. His metaphors are like similes and his similes are not. He is the strangest writer on Fark, and this is your Fark Writer's Thread   ( divider line
    More: CSB, Collective bargaining, Cascading Style Sheets, Metaphor, Comment, Washington Redskins, adverse effect, collective bargaining, best short fiction  
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630 clicks; posted to Main » and Discussion » on 15 Jul 2020 at 3:10 PM (20 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook

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2020-07-15 3:02:01 PM  
The 2020 Fark Fiction Anthology is open for submissions!  We're looking for the best short fiction up to 10,000 words in any of the following genres:

Science Fiction

As always, entries will be judged by our crack team of editors and farkers, and the best submissions will be published in paperback and Kindle e-book editions!  Best of all, all proceeds will go to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, so it's all for a good cause!

Have a story to tell?  Want to show your fellow your literary genius?  Send us what you've got!

Submissions close on July 31, so get them in quick!

The 2020 Fark Fiction Anthology Official Entry And Submissions Page

Previous anthologies:
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2020-07-15 3:03:55 PM  
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2020-07-15 3:14:24 PM  
Go home, Jackie Chiles. You're intoxicated, inebriated, sloshed, soused and smashed.
2020-07-15 3:20:09 PM  
And every word is a lie, including the "and" and "the".
2020-07-15 3:42:06 PM  
Boobiesed this in an unrelated thread weeks ago. Short story. Hope it means something.

A Day That Ends In "Why"

"When I get my stimulus check, shiat gon' be litty!" Elessa said. She scrolled through the online catalog on her  phone. This place definitely had just what she needed. She looked around the small apartment. The furniture was that dated butcher block shiat from the 80s. Her Aunt Lizzy and her Uncle Tre spent most of their lives as janitors and both were now on disability, so they collected what they could.

Uncle Tre passed away in March. The doctors said they didn't know what it was, only that his lungs gave up. He was 57 years old. Elessa knew better tho. Rona bit a lot of her community in the ass, hard. But what were you gonna do?
She could hear her aunt cough in the next room. Aunt Lizzie was 61, and was supposed to take her oxygen when she napped, but she refused to do so. She said she didn't want her lungs to "get too used to it." 

Elessa listened as her aunt resumed snoring, and then entered the room. The cannula lay on the nightstand. She gently looped the tubing over her aunt's ears, and gently slipped the cannula into her nostrils. Her aunt stirred a bit, but otherwise didn't wake up. She was sleeping a lot since Unc had passed. Elessa didn't blame her. Nothing was ever gonna be the same anymore anyway, at least not for folks like Aunt Lizzy and Moms.

On her way out of the room, Elessa turned on the concentrator. She knew her auntie would sleep better. She knew she appreciated it too.

Elessas thoughts were interrupted by her phone. The song was by Drake, her favorite artist. Her friends say his shiat was snatched, but she didn't care. It was too litty. She answered.

"Coulda texted, biatch?"

"Fark you," said Jalisa in her slow Atlanta drawl. "What's good?"

"Nothin. Bored outta my mind. These protests tho. I'm down, but my mom would kick my ass. She always says, 'never bring home what you don't need.' What's good with you?"

"You wanna hang out with the n****as at the park, grab something to eat?"

Elessa knew her friend wanted to check out the protests. But it made her nervous. What if some of them cops and hoteps wanted smoke?

It's barely been 2 weeks since the last brotha got shot. It was farking open season on blacks. Police brutality and a pandemic. It was like God's cruel joke.  Elessa felt blessed tho. She cleaned for a small pharmacy. She liked them, and didn't want to cause any trouble. That would be too much. That would be shiatty.

"Nah Jalissa, miss me with that bullshiat. I know you want to hang around with those knuckleheads. I'm down, but I'm too scared of losing my job. What if we end up on t.v.?"

"Girl, whatever! Ain't nobody from Kipiswich and Family Pharmacy gonna be watching the news anyway. Mr. Kipiswich is practically deaf, and Mrs. Kipiswich finds the news "too depressing." I swear, that woman still thinks Donald Trump is hosting that fake ass job show!" They both laughed. "Which reminds me," said Elessa, "did you ever get your unemployment approved?"

"Nah gurl." said Jalissa. " I knew it was too good to be true anyway. That damn "Gas and Go" dick muthafarker talkin about nobody's coming in the store anymore. They all paying at the pump, so we have to cut back on personnel. You know how it goes. Last one hired... "

"Is the first one fired," finished Elessa . Jalissa worked at a gas station in a fairly nice, white neighborhood. The rich white folks there stopped going inside to buy things after the 'Rona dropped. Jalissa was only part-time, anyway. Her boyfriend worked delivering shiat for a big online company, so they weren't broke, but money lost is money noticed.

"Yeah, it's tempting girl," said Elessa, "but it's too risky. I don't need anymore mess than I already have."

"Let the church say amen!" said Jalissa . "Alright girl, stay woke."

"You too girl, bye." Elessa hung up the phone. Her battery was low. That seemed to happen a lot. She looked at her cheap ass phone. A ZTE, from one of those pop up cell phone companies. Better than nothing tho. She plugged her phone in, jiggling the frayed cord to make sure it didn't slip out. She then headed towards the kitchen to start some white beans in the crock pot That, along with a ham hock and some rice was gonna be a banger.

Not ten minutes later, there was a hard knock at the door Elessa ran to open it.

"Jalissa what the fark!" she whispered loudly. Auntie's sleep! " Suddenly her anger dissipated. Jalissa was worried, and frightened.

"It's Ray Ray, girl! He went to the store 2 hours ago, and hasn't come back since. Moms is losing it, yo! She scared!" Jalissa eyes welled with tears. "He 14, boo! Cops already think he grown! They'll beat his ass!"

Elessa twisted her mouth. She saw Ray Ray the other night on his phone watching the protests. He was hyped.

"Okay girl we got this, " Elessa said. "I put the beans on, and the rice can wait. You bring an extra mask in case someone rips it off you?" Jalissa reached in her jean shorts and pulled out a second homemade mask. "This is for Ray Ray too. I don't know if he took his handkerchief."

That concerned Elessa. Some n****as needed to be tough. They wanna be macho, cause they think they hard and won't catch the 'Rona, but all of them are just fools. 'Rona don't care if you're black or white. Just wear the farking mask! Isn't 50 thousand blacks dead out of 120 thousand warning enough?

Eliza grabbed two homemade masks and put one on. It was Saturday afternoon and the day was actually a cool, 80 degrees. They started to head towards the park near the community center. There were hundreds of people, there and many ethnicities. She saw two Asian gentleman showing each other something on their phones. She looked over and saw some Mexican girls, offering free handkerchiefs to use as masks. She saw three white girls wearing matching Hello Kitty masks. She knew they went to the Immaculate Heart Catholic school down the street. She wondered how much trouble they would get into, once the school found out. She grabbed Jalissa by the hand, and they made their way through the crowd. Jalissa was texting her brother with the other hand.

Have you heard anything from him yet? " Elessa shouted, ducking. She narrowly avoided a sign That says "Green Lives Matter! with a picture of a marijuana leaf on it.

"No, not yet!" Jalissa yelled back. "Ray Ray! Ray Ray!" they shouted. A bunch of drunken white guys took up the chant. "Ray, Ray, Ray Charles matters!" They burst into loud laughter. Elessa and Jalissa kept going, "Just shout out Raymond Johnson girl," shouted Elessa to her friend. Jalissa laughed.

The crowd seemed to part a bit and Jalisa and Eliza took their chance to dash through it. Jalissa stopped suddenly, jerking Elessa to a halt. "there's some smoke up ahead!" she shouted, pointing towards a group of young white males. In front of them were several white guys wearing black bandanas, camouflage and carrying what Elessa heard referred to as "long guns."

The black bandanas had a skull on it. "That symbol belongs to some type of comic book doesn't it?" Jalissa asked. "Yeah Elessa said. "I read somewhere that white people co-opted it."

"What does co-opted mean?" said Jalissa.

"It's like when you take something and you make it your own, even though thats not what it was originally designed for. Kinda like that Pepe the Frog shiat."

"Oh yeah said Jalissa. "That does sound like something white folks would do." The women started to make their way around the racists in the crowd. They walked a little further. Elessa checked her phone. They had been in the crowd for 20 minutes. They couldn't find RayRay anywhere. "Goddamn, if we don't all look alike," thought Elessa. It was starting to get hot and sweaty, even though the night felt relatively cool. As the girls walked through the crowd, it started to thin out again. Suddenly Elessa yanked Jalissa hand, and her heart lept into her throat. Several more of the white men in camouflage and black bandanas were straight ahead. Along with them were three cops.

"Oh my God, what the fark?" said Elessa.
"I know, right girl?" said Jalissa "We need to get away from them fast." Jalissa was angry.  "Why do white people always want to fark with us? Why is it every time we try to build a movement, they always try to make it about themselves?

"I don't know said Eleesa, "maybe they're jealous or something." "Maybe they jealous of the way we move our hips!" shouted Jalissa. She swayed to music coming from someone's car.  "Right foot up, left foot slide!" she sang.

"I thought you hated Drake!" Elessa said, laughing.

"Yeah, but that beat goes hard son!" said Jalissa . Besides, this ain't for Drizzy. This is for us cause we Phenomenal Women!"

"Yeah," she continued. "They copy our music, they put dreadlocks in their hair, they even use makeup to darken their skin. You know that singer, at first she was white as milk, and now all the sudden she's all tan and shiat?"

"Yeah," said Elessa, "That other family does that shiat all the time. They on camera, they black. They shower, they back white. They probably spend more money on dark foundation than us black women do!"

"You are too funny gurl!" said Jalissa.  "But you right. I don't even wanna say their last name."

"Me either." said Elessa.

Suddenly Elessa yanked Jalissa hand, and her heart lept in her throat. Up ahead were more white guys And five cops. Ray Ray say the the ground between them. His hands were cuffed behind his back.

Jalissa cried out in horror. "Oh my God! Oh my god boo, they got him! Oh my god they got him, oh my God they got him, oh Jesus what am I gonna do?

Elessa didn't know. She felt fear in the pit of her stomach. Tears welled up in her eyes. "Why can't they just leave us alone?" , she thought.  Ray Ray was a good kid. Why of all the n****as on the street, why her best friend's brother?

Suddenly the crowd started to get louder. "Look at this shiat!" shouted one brotha. "They got Ray Ray, man! He's only 14!" People started shouting "Black lives matter! and "Fark the police!" at the same time. Jalisa grabbed her friend by the shoulders. She was shouting through her mask.

"Elessa it's Ray Ray! Maybe we can talk to them!" Her tears were punctuated by the anger in her voice. "He's my little brother! He can't go out like this!" Jalissa yanked her in closer. "Maybe we can talk to them, Elessa. He's my baby  brother! You ride or die, boo?"

"Ride or Die," said Elisa, grabbing Jalissa hand and clutching it to her chest.  This was was their moment. If she got the Rona, maybe she'd have a better chance of pulling through it than her uncle did. This was for her uncle.  This was for her cousins. This was for RayRay. Ride or die, cause the pain had to stop. The murders had to stop. This was our land too.

Elessa reached up to re-tie her mask. As crowded as it was, it probably wouldn't have helped much anyway. But for the first time in weeks, she was beginning to think the 'Rona wasn't all that important. This was real. This was black people's reality. No jobs, no money and always getting harrassed by police. Her mom said it had been happening since she was a kid. Elessa looked around her. Maybe now there are enough young people now to make a difference.

Elessa was 23, and in pretty good health. She was part of the Millennial/Gen Z generation, and knew how to use social media. She turned on her camera and prayed she had enough battery. She wanted to make sure cops would notice, and let Ray Ray go safely. She also thought she felt a tickle in her throat, but she dismissed it as allergies. What's a little cough compared to saving our black men? What's a little cough compared to saving future leaders of the world?

"Ride or die Jalissa," she said as they walked slowly towards the officers. "Ride or die."
2020-07-15 4:43:27 PM  
While on staycation this week, I hope to get my main story critted. Also reached the halfway mark on Deflection Point, 25 stories, only took 7 years. Got to start publishing those suckers.
2020-07-15 4:56:25 PM  
Really, there was no point to it.  But there he was, sitting as his keyboard, typing away.  He fantasized that what he was writing had a point, but in his heart he knew that in the long run it really didn't matter.   Because of his extensive library, he felt compelled to add his particular synthesis.  In fact, he had once shocked a friend by merely saying "I don't know".

Yet he persisted, rambling on as if he were going to eventually tie his stream-of-consciousness thoughts with some sort of intellectual ribbon into a neat little package.  But like life itself, there was no identifiable plot.  No story arc that makes sense.  It was simply random words that made coherent sentences, but as a whole, they were wanting of coherence.

The low hiss of the air conditioner.  Someone a few doors over mowing their lawn.  The 'clink' of a dish being put in the sink.  The high wailing creak of a door hinge.  The "chuff" of a radio breaking squelch.  He smiled, as the radio, sitting on a quiet frequency, conveyed no more intelligence to its listener that the sporadic clacking of keys on the keyboard.

Why decided on this course of action he really wasn't sure.  Was it random?  How far down that rabbit hole would he go?  Was it some high-level thinking that brought him to this situation, or was it some neurons firing randomly?  Perhaps it was down at the level of quantum mechanics.  Did it go that far?  Certainly, it couldn't be ignored, but at what level does thought become thought?  Perhaps more importantly, does it matter?

Pausing, he remembered the frog that had been a sort of mascot/class room pet in third grade.  It had a very definable set of behaviors.  For example, when it noticed movement, it would orient itself towards the movement, then jump towards it, and if the parameters were right (size and distance), it would flick it's tongue out.  It was something you could actually put into pseudo-code.  Was his behavior like that?

"Nah".  His behavior was far more complex.  You couldn't write pseudo-code them.  He wasn't pre-programmed.  He was more subtle. less predictable, capable of making higher-level judgments.   Of course, not all of them were necessarily the best decisions, but humans aren't frogs.  Humans being human will make mistakes, but rare was the person who, when grabbing a hot dish as a youngster, didn't learn to stay away from things that are hot.

Still, there was some deep, nagging familiarity between what he saw in the frog and what he saw in himself.  Too often, he thought, his behavior seemed preprogrammed.  "Maybe it's just the way we learn things", he mused.  After all, humans, while capable of deep thought, are also creatures of habit.  Who, he reasoned, hasn't driven home from work on "automatic pilot", responding to traffic and being alert but all of a sudden finding themselves closer to home than they thought?

Was this how the frog worked too, just at a less complex level?  What made a being intelligent?  Was it language?  Was it recognition of your environment?  Tool use?  Tool creation?  After all, the frog was more efficient at doing certain things than he was.   He shrugged it off.  Again, the feeling was that he was *OBVIOUSLY* more intelligent and more aware of his surroundings than some amphibian with a brain the size of a pencil point.  "I'm sitting at a computer, an amazingly complex human created tool, expressing thoughts that are simply beyond anything a frog can comprehend".

And yet.

And yet.

There was still that indefinable feeling.  The COVID-19 crisis had meant that pretty much everyone had spent the last few weeks between the same four walls.  "Ah, *THAT'S* what it is!".  It's simply cabin fever.  He's spent so long in his house, it's starting to feel like the terrarium Kermit (well, what else do you think third graders would name a frog?) was housed in decades ago in his old classroom.   That's why he had those feelings.

Satisfied with his ability to correctly and accurately express both internally and in writing why he felt that way, he got up and made some dinner, mixed an after dinner drink, and put in "20,000 Leagues Under The Sea", the 1954 Disney version.  It had been one of his favorites as a child.  He started dozing off before the end of the film.  "Probably made that drink a bit stiffer than normal....."

The next day, 14.671% of the Merzeplian students had notes excusing them from his dissection on moral grounds.  The pedagogue thought it outrageous that so many would be absent, but his appendages were tied by the administration.
2020-07-15 9:35:28 PM  
His dangling participles have Prince Alberts and a fine chain to leash them to their sentences.
His articles are all definite, and all of his nouns countable.
His interjections are considered fully-realized diatribes in philosophical circles.
His sentence diagrams are fractal.
2020-07-16 4:08:55 AM  
Reality is just a metaphor
And that metaphor is a metaphor
For another metaphor


I heard some poseur in coffee shop saying that years ago, and all the young ladies around him said, "Oh my gosh, that's so deep!" And I had a similar thought, but with a different adjective.

Getting closer to finishing my short story for The Anthology, I keep saying just one more day, then email it tomorrow. But my editing is still in the "fine tuning" phase and not quite into the "just fiddling around" phase, also known as "painting legs on the snake."

But in the last few days, while focusing on hammering down all the rough edges, I've gotten a half-dozen story ideas, which I jot into my little notebook of story ideas. I find that very, very useful as I often have what I call "half an idea." There is the start of a good idea, but it needs fleshing out, or perhaps there might be a key skill I don't possess to develop the idea. But sometimes a second idea pops in your head That makes the first one work.

Also, I ordered a new guitar (acoustic electric) as a belated unbirthday present to myself. I haven't played for years.

I also plan on painting after finishing this story, a couple canvases of my friend's bar that just closed in January, after opening right before Prohibition ended. I wrote an article for the smallville newspaper about its closing, and even wrote myself into it, with my "comedy debut" at open Mic night there, telling pirate jokes. Some of them, I had to admit, were rated Rrrrrr. Anyway, Associated Press "reprinted"  my article, or a condensed version of it that sounded like a book review, and that convinced me to finish my Journalism degree, which led me to move to another city just days before the Shutdown... And that's another story. It fills five notebooks so far.

So that bar, The Silver Dollar Club, now has very special meaning for me, and the development of my writing, so I'm looking forward to making a couple canvases of it for my friends who worked there, from my photo that AP reprinted.
2020-07-16 6:43:37 PM  
Using my vast experience as a software engineering release train expert, I decided my new short story was good enough to ship (i.e., the deadline was looming) and emailed it in to yesterday.    Do we get any confirmation that the submission was received?
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