Short Stories #2

Discussion in 'HipForums Writers Contest' started by MeAgain, Aug 5, 2020.

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  1. MeAgain

    MeAgain Dazed and Confused Staff Member Super Moderator

    Sharpen up your pencils, dip a pen in the old inkwell, and fire up that word processor.
    Time to submit a new short story!!!!

    Just add it to this thread!​
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2020
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  2. MeAgain

    MeAgain Dazed and Confused Staff Member Super Moderator

    Ephemeralization
    Ephemeralization is a word coined by R. Buckminster Fuller to describe the ability of technological artifacts to do more and more with less and less.

    For example, in the world of high technology digital computers such as ENIAC, built in 1945, occupied an entire room, weighed 27 tons, and could perform 385 multiplications per second.

    [​IMG]

    Today’s hand held computer cell phone can perform over 2,000,000,000 instructions per second, measures around 2 ½ x 5 ½ x ¼ inches, and weighs about 0.0005511557 of a ton.

    The ENIAC interface used a system of plug board wiring as shown in the above picture and 3,600 ten-way switches. Compare that to your current cell phone touch screen interface and Bluetooth capabilities.
    ENIAC used vacuum tubes as switching devices to regulate electron flow. They were bulky, unreliable, and wasted large amounts of energy in the form of dissipated heat. In the 1940s transistors which were much smaller, cheaper, more reliable and more efficient began replacing the vacuum tube. In the 1960s transistors began to be made smaller and smaller and combined on integrated chips. The integrated circuit shown to the right in the picture below can hold over six hundred million transistors.

    [​IMG]

    In just a few short years, through ephemeralization, computers not only do more and more with less and less, but they have shrunken in size to such a degree that it may be that in the near future chips containing an entire computer implanted in your body will cause them to completely disappear from sight.


    But ephemeralization is not restricted to high technology alone. Many simple technological devices and creations are also subject to the same improvement in efficiency and reduction in size.

    Consider the written word. At one time ideas and concepts were laboriously recorded on stonewalls or cuneiform tablets.

    [​IMG]

    Later with the invention of paper and ink the size became smaller. Moveable type increased efficiency and reduced cost and lately type has become digital. Today instead of having to store reams of paper bound into books and stacked on shelves in a room or library, entire collections of the world’s greatest libraries can be displayed in an instant on that 2 ½ x 5 ½ x ¼ inch cell phone we mentioned earlier. Who knows, in the near future, as the integrated chip is absorbed into your skin, words themselves may begin to disappear as ideas and concepts spring fully blown and completely devoid of a visual element within your very brain.


    And as the miracle of ephemeralization marches on, who knows what next will disappe..
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2020
  3. ZenKarma

    ZenKarma Administrator Staff Member Super Moderator

    Great little story there MeAgain! Write on!

    I also learned a thing or two reading this... now I must dream something up.
     
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  4. MeAgain

    MeAgain Dazed and Confused Staff Member Super Moderator

    We Go to the Circus

    [​IMG]
    Just a short story to give myself some competition.


    The circus had come to town and we decided to go, as we had nothing else to do.

    Being who we were at the time we concluded that this would be an excellent time to combine the wonders of a three ring circus with copious amounts of drugs.
    The choice of the day was Parest 400s and LSD.
    Parest 400s are basically Quaaludes on steroids.

    [​IMG]

    We left in two cars. Jimbo, Deb, Al, and Stick in the Corvair. Cin, Steve, my future wife, and myself in Steve's Mustang.
    The Corvair was full of those doing Parest 400 caps. In the Mustang Steve and Cin were doing LSD, my wife and myself Parest 400 caps.

    I really can't tell you much about the circus as all I can remember is trying to follow two freaks on LSD through the arena, sitting in a seat with my face in a snow cone and looking at the person in front of me, who for some reason had snow cone all over his back....and then we were back at the house wondering what happened to those in the Corvair.

    The following morning Jimbo stormed into the house, threw down a plastic bag full of hair and shouted, "Look at what the F++King cops did to me!"

    Turned out they had left the circus and piled into the Corvair when Al found out he couldn't drive as all the drool was getting in the way.
    Luckily for them Stick announced she was fine and she'd drive them all home to their nice comfy beds.
    She started the car, put it in gear...and immediately backed up into a chain link fence raising the rear wheels off the ground in the process.
    And there they sat as the car was immobilized.

    Of course after awhile the cops come along and find this Corvair full of hippies hung up on a chain link fence with the rear wheels spinning. They immediately assume carbon dioxide poisoning and begin a rescue by pulling everyone out of the car...and discover various forms of drugs and assorted paraphernalia.
    They call in the paddy wagon and in the process of throwing the druggies into the back, Jimbo drops his glasses and as he stoops to pick them up the cops think "resisting arrest", spray him with some nasty substance, grab him by his long flowing hair and "help" him into the van.


    They spent the night in jail and in the morning are brought before the judge whereupon Jimbo throws down handfuls of hair on the judge's bench and yells, "Look at what your F++King cops did to me!"

    [​IMG]

    To make a long story short, the judge dismisses all charges and on the way out in the elevator they meet the arresting officer who had pulled Jimbo's hair out. He gives them a ride back to their car, they show up at the house and tell their story, we say "WOW" and then smoke some joints.

    Times were great!

    [​IMG]




     
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  5. Dax

    Dax Members

    WINDCHIMES.

    Alice loved wind chimes. She had them hanging all around the outside her house and on the veranda which in Africa they call a stoop. Some even hung in the trees in the yard. There were glass, brass, ceramic and bamboo wind chimes. When the wind sprang up they played a symphony that only she appreciated,

    Only one wind chime hung inside her house. It was a special one because her husband David gave it to her just three weeks before he was murdered. He’d gone outside in the yard after hearing screaming thinking that one of their staff was being attacked. Alice watched as his head was hacked from his body with a machete. Watched in horror as it bounced like a football when it hit the ground .
    She just had time to slam and bolt the door before they turned on her. David had long before shown her how to load and fire the twelve-gauge pump action shotgun. She fetched it from the bedroom then unbolted and opened the front door. She’d seen grown men freeze just at the sound a pump action shotgun made when tromboning a shell into the chamber. It's a sound you will never forget particularly if it is behind you.

    Shick-shick!

    “Bastards!” she screamed and shot the one nearest her in the head. The force of the blast tore away most of his face so that only a bloody skull with bits of tissue and flesh sticking to it remained.

    Shick-shick!

    Another cartridge in the breech and another one exploded.

    Shick-shick … shick-shick.

    The sound the shotgun made as she reloaded was as good as the thrump and the recoil when she pulled the trigger. She killed three that night and would have upped her tally if they hadn’t run away.

    Now she called it “David’s wind chime.” It was large, made of crystal and it hung from the passage ceiling. It was so low that she had to walk around it went she walked from the lounge to the kitchen. Maverick and Purdy, the Rottweilers she bought after David’s death, pricked up their ears whenever they heard the crystal wind chime tinkle. The dogs brushed against it too. It made her think of David.
    Those that hung on the stoop and in the trees were lower than head height as well. She referred to them as her “musical burglar alarms" that worked fine except when there was no wind.”

    It was one o’clock in the morning when she woke up. It was hot and humid in the bedroom because all the windows in the house were closed. There wasn’t even a hint of the air moving. It was dark and silent in the room so the sudden tinkling of the crystal wind chime startled her.

    “You dogs.” She scolded aloud, turning over to face the wall. “Always bumping into David’s wind chime.”
    Maverick and Purdy lying cold and dead just outside the open front door couldn’t prick up their ears this time.

    The sound that the shotgun Alice held was muffled by the bed covers.

    Shick-Shick!
     
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  6. ZenKarma

    ZenKarma Administrator Staff Member Super Moderator

    @Dax that's a great story! Thanks for submitting it!

    Sent chills up my spine... well done.
     
  7. ZenKarma

    ZenKarma Administrator Staff Member Super Moderator

    @MeAgain that's a great circus tale! I laughed and laughed... been there done something like it myself in Waynesburg, PA.
     
  8. Dax

    Dax Members

    SUMMER OF LOVE

    She was thirteen and beautiful. I was thirteen and wise beyond my years. My sisters, one older and one younger than me, called me forward, precocious, the dumbass kid and other random unflattering names.

    It was the summer of 1967. Saturday late morning and I was standing on the grass verge in front of our house watching the new neighbours moving in. She saw me and crossed the road right into my space.

    "Hi I'm Sylvia." she said. "But you can call me Babes. What’s your name?"

    She stood right in front of me, with her thumbs hooked in the side pockets of her bell-bottom jeans. This already told me she was something else, as all the other girls I knew would immediately have folded their arms over their bee sting boobs the moment they came face to face with a guy. Babes was confident enough to allow her little rose buds to face me with only a white tee shirt with “PEACE” emblazoned on it separating us.

    "Jimmy." I replied folding my arms, then immediately unfolding them because I didn't have any boobs to worry about.

    Babes shook her head. "No I don’t like Jimmy." She looked me up and down.

    "Why not?" I asked, figuring I had to say something.

    She raised her hands to the stars and stripes bandana she wore, fussing with it in a feminine way. She had the biggest bluest eyes I'd ever seen.

    "I just don't. What’s your surname?"

    "Jones."

    "Coohil. I'm gonna call you Jones then. Okay?"

    I shrugged. "Okay."

    "So Jones," Babes said hooking her thumbs in the back pockets of her jeans this time, "you wanna come around to my house and listen to records? I've got Grateful Dead, Big Brother and the Holding Company, Jefferson Airplane, and also Scott McKenzie."

    "Sure," I said, "but I gotta go have lunch first."

    About two o'clock I rang the doorbell and an adult carbon copy of Babes opened the door. She wore the same bandana, the same bell-bottoms and she had the same eyes, oh and the rose buds weren't rose buds but flowers in full bloom.

    "Hi you must be Jones." She smiled. "Come on in." She held the door open for me. "I'm Babes' mom but you can call me Lisa."

    It was the first time in my life that an adult had told me to call them by their first name. If I hadn't met and fallen for Babes first, then Lisa would have been the one for me, honest.

    "Excuse the mess." she said, closing the door. "Babes is in the kitchen. Through there."

    She was sitting on the kitchen table, her legs swinging back and forth while she chomped on a hamburger. Her face lit up when she saw me and her smile, oh her smile. Jeez what a charmer and those eyes.

    "Hi." Babes said brushing a crumb of roll off her cheek.

    "Hi yourself." I said.

    We went to her bedroom, which was a first for me. I mean going into a girl's bedroom and being alone with her there and with the door closed. It was all so cool and when her mom, I mean Lisa, brought us some Coke, she even knocked before she opened the door.

    We spent the whole afternoon in her room talking, laughing, playing records, eating, drinking and for about half an hour Lisa joined us and we were like three buddies, only one was a mom.

    Babes told me everything about them. That Lisa was a hippie and that her dad lived in another like galaxy cos he was that far away. By the time I left because I had to go home for supper, Babes and I were so close and I'd never before in my life ever met anyone like her.

    So we spent the summer vacation joined at the hip. Wherever Babes went Jones went and wherever Jones went Babes went. Except once every week when she and Lisa disappeared for the whole day. When they got back home Babes was always very tired and she had these black rings under her bluest eyes and she slept a lot the rest of the day and night.

    At these times Lisa always looked sad and I couldn't figure out why. Once I asked her about it and she just gave me a hug and when I looked at her she was wiping tears off her cheeks.

    Babes just gave me the look when I asked her about it. The look was something she did with her eyes and when you looked into those deep blue pools, you just forgot what you'd wanted to know in the first place.

    So when there were only a couple of weeks of vacation left, Babes said we had to start going steady. She was like that, always taking charge and making decisions for both of us. I didn't mind because she was the coolest chick in the street and she wanted to go steady with me. What can I say?

    I remember the time so clearly. It was a Saturday night and Lisa asked me if I'd spend the evening with Babes because she had a date with some or other random guy in the neighbourhood. Babes and I were alone in her house for the very first time ever.

    Babes had a Philips reel-to-reel tape recorder and she'd taped all her favourite songs on it. She said she could turn it on and play four hours of cool songs without ever getting up to change a record. We sat on the couch in her lounge holding hands while we listened to the songs.

    "Come on you people, shine on your brother, everybody get together try to love one another right now."

    Babes looked into my eyes and her small warm hand squeezed mine so that I knew what I had to do next. I put my arms around her and drew her against me, at the same time our lips met, awkwardly at first, then passionately as we figured out where our noses had to be and what we were supposed to do with out tongues.

    Jeez who am I trying to fool?

    Babes taught me how to kiss and when I asked her how she knew when to open her mouth and how not to knock her teeth against mine she said: "Girls of thirteen just know these things Jones … okay?"

    I was so happy and I think Babes was happy too.

    Later when we were lying down on the couch and the Floor Elevators, Country Joe and the Fish, Cream, Donovan, Mamas and the Papas, The Byrds, and Jefferson Airplane were playing, neither of us heard them. Our lips were touching and she was fast asleep and me, well I was just holding her and looking at her and loving her so much.

    I'd always wondered why she never took off the bandana and I'd never seen her hair ever. Didn't know if it was black, blonde or red but my money was on blonde or even red because her face was always that pale and seemed to grow paler with every passing day.

    Without thinking I put my hand up to the stars and stripes and was about to push it up so I could take a look, when Babes opened her eyes and gave me the "look". I immediately dropped my hand. I swear she smiled at me in her sleep.

    When Lisa came home she woke us and her cheeks were wet again and I wasn't sure if it was us or something else that had happened to make her cry.

    I think it was the last weekend of the summer vacation, a Saturday again. Babes and I had made plans to go to the movies in the morning. Nine thirty I knocked on her door. No answer. Ten thirty, eleven thirty. Nothing. At twelve I gave up.

    Nothing the whole afternoon, so I sat at our living room window waiting for a light to be switched on in Babes' place. It was eight o'clock when I saw the light and Lisa answered my knock.

    "Oh Jesus Jones baby” she sobbed when she saw me at the front door. "She's dead … Babes is dead sweetheart."

    Apparently she'd been sick for a long time with cancer Lisa said and it just got worse and worse. Terminal they called it, like terminal equals "you're gonna die soon Babes". It was something called leukaemia and well, I didn’t really understand but Lisa said while she was being given blood or platelets or something that morning, her heart just stopped beating.

    Lisa hugged me and cried and I cursed God for letting Babes die and she phoned my mother who fetched me and even my sisters didn't say anything, which was a very rare thing in their lives.

    The day of the funeral Lisa asked me if I'd like to look at Babes in her coffin and I said, "Fuck yes" and … no I didn't. In my mind yes but to Lisa I said: "Yes please" without thinking.

    Mom said are you sure and I said, "Fuck yes" again only in my mind and mom hugged me tightly.

    It was a white coffin and Babes was so beautiful, like the first day I saw her only much, much paler. Her bald head was covered in a wreath of beautiful flowers so that you couldn't see she had no hair from the fucking radiation. The stars and stripes bandana was on her chest.

    I cried.

    After the funeral Lisa gave me a seven single that I stuck in the front of my pants. I didn't know what else to do with it cos it was too big for my pockets. She said Babes had told her to give it to me if I was still around the day she died.

    That night in my room I looked at the record again. Babes had taken the label off both sides so that I had no idea what the song was or the singer. I put it on my record player and lay down on my bed.

    I never cried so much before in my life even when my gran died.

    Oh Babes I love you so much.

    "If you're going to San Francisco, be sure to wear some flowers in your hair.”

    Copyright: Dax.
     
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  9. WOLF ANGEL

    WOLF ANGEL Senior Member - A Fool on the Hill

    TEN to ONE:
    TEN: Seconds remained before I would I would be no more.
    NINE: People had been involved in the conspiracy against me.
    EIGHT: Weeks had passed, a period now seemed so brief.
    SEVEN: Days had however, been the catalyst for disaster.
    SIX: Times I had the opportunity to opt out this situation.
    FIVE: Moments of madness had seen mistakes which could not be undone.
    FOUR: Factors had been unwavering inevitable.
    THREE: Friends had been complicit in setting me up.
    TWO:Appeals had failed to exonerate me and prove my innocence.
    ONE: The time had arrived – I was and am no more.
     
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