Yankeedoodle30
"I have a very detailed imaginary life, and it sometimes takes precedence over what's actually happening around me.”
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There's just something about Nothing...
Written by Yankeedoodle30 in portal Philosophy

Something To-Do About Nothing

“I’d love to take a minute of your valuable time and tell you about a close friend of mine; his name is, Nothing.

What I want to explore here today, has nothing to do with nothing, but everything to do with my friend, Nothing. 

Even though Nothing is my friend on Facebook, I actually know nothing about Nothing.

Here is what I do know about, Nothing; he was born an empty canvas or a blank sheet of paper, upon which any number of characters and plot lines could have be painted or written, but since he doesn't have an identity or a storyline, Nothing will remain nothing the rest of forever.

Just for fun, I Googled Nothing’s name and I was not surprised to find: zilch, nada, zippo, a big goose egg. Let’s just say, I found diddley squat about Nothing. It was as if Nothing didn’t exist, but I know he exists because I can spend endless hours with him talking about nothing in particular. 

My friends say I waste too much time doing nothing with Nothing, with nothing to show for it.

I tell them, “It’s up to me if I want to waste my time doing nothing with Nothing.

Bob Dylan even agrees with me, he once sang: "When you got nothing, you’ve got nothing to loose."

The other day, outside the local library, I saw two engraving in a giant marble block.

The first one read. . . . .  “Nothing is written in stone”. 

The second read. . . . .: “Is nothing sacred?”

I often hear spooky noises in the middle of the night. I tell my wife, it might be something to worry about, or it could be Nothing, pulling a prank on us.

To get serious for a moment, if we were to remove any meaning from our lives, then it’s just Nothing that's out there in the nothingness of space, which means, Nothing is pranking us all.

People live such busy lives, an encounter with my friend Nothing, can be a scary experience, because we are wired as humans to find meaning in everything, but not Nothing. He is actually an elusive fellow because Nothing, is as he appears.

Lets get technical for a minute: Nothing, is not the opposite of something, because if Nothing didn’t show up for work, one day, Something certainly wouldn’t show up to do his work. 

But if Something didn’t show up for work, Nothing would be there to work.

If we were God and able to create and design something from nothing, we would have a freedom that’s not available to us when we create something from something.

Any person, who is still breathing, that says he or she is nothing, i.e., “being nothing”, doesn't understand that this is an oxymoron, because an identity is as necessary for us to play the game of life as is a playing piece is for the game of Monopoly.

“Anything can happen in your life, but if you’re lazy and do nothing, nothing will happen.” (I think Obi Wan Kenobi said that to Luke Skywalker)

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There's just something about Nothing...
Written by Yankeedoodle30 in portal Philosophy
Something To-Do About Nothing

“I’d love to take a minute of your valuable time and tell you about a close friend of mine; his name is, Nothing.

What I want to explore here today, has nothing to do with nothing, but everything to do with my friend, Nothing. 

Even though Nothing is my friend on Facebook, I actually know nothing about Nothing.
Here is what I do know about, Nothing; he was born an empty canvas or a blank sheet of paper, upon which any number of characters and plot lines could have be painted or written, but since he doesn't have an identity or a storyline, Nothing will remain nothing the rest of forever.

Just for fun, I Googled Nothing’s name and I was not surprised to find: zilch, nada, zippo, a big goose egg. Let’s just say, I found diddley squat about Nothing. It was as if Nothing didn’t exist, but I know he exists because I can spend endless hours with him talking about nothing in particular. 

My friends say I waste too much time doing nothing with Nothing, with nothing to show for it.

I tell them, “It’s up to me if I want to waste my time doing nothing with Nothing.

Bob Dylan even agrees with me, he once sang: "When you got nothing, you’ve got nothing to loose."

The other day, outside the local library, I saw two engraving in a giant marble block.
The first one read. . . . .  “Nothing is written in stone”. 
The second read. . . . .: “Is nothing sacred?”

I often hear spooky noises in the middle of the night. I tell my wife, it might be something to worry about, or it could be Nothing, pulling a prank on us.

To get serious for a moment, if we were to remove any meaning from our lives, then it’s just Nothing that's out there in the nothingness of space, which means, Nothing is pranking us all.

People live such busy lives, an encounter with my friend Nothing, can be a scary experience, because we are wired as humans to find meaning in everything, but not Nothing. He is actually an elusive fellow because Nothing, is as he appears.

Lets get technical for a minute: Nothing, is not the opposite of something, because if Nothing didn’t show up for work, one day, Something certainly wouldn’t show up to do his work. 
But if Something didn’t show up for work, Nothing would be there to work.

If we were God and able to create and design something from nothing, we would have a freedom that’s not available to us when we create something from something.

Any person, who is still breathing, that says he or she is nothing, i.e., “being nothing”, doesn't understand that this is an oxymoron, because an identity is as necessary for us to play the game of life as is a playing piece is for the game of Monopoly.

“Anything can happen in your life, but if you’re lazy and do nothing, nothing will happen.” (I think Obi Wan Kenobi said that to Luke Skywalker)

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Written by Yankeedoodle30

Episode II: Fun in a Bus Station

A one-of-a-kind geological artifact, a 380 lb. uncut emerald, has gone missing from a storage locker at the local Greyhound Bus Terminal located on the other side of the tracks in the bad part of the city. The owner of the green rock, nicknamed Kryptonite, is unknown. 

The humongous rock came into police custody as evidence in a shoplifting case, two years previous at the local Wal-Mart, two blocks from the bus terminal, fortunately, located on the good side of the tracks. Because the evidence lockers at the police station were too small, the big rock was put into the bus locker for safekeeping.

Detective Chris P. Bacon, pulled up to the bus station in his late model unmarked police cruiser. The call about the missing emerald had spoiled his plans for the evening, and now it was 10:30 pm. He locked his cruiser and peeled his sunglasses of his block shaped head. Inside the station he waved at Sergeant Less Mature who was using way too much yellow crime scene tape to mark the location of the crime.

“Sergeant, go easy on that crime scene tape, a hundred foot roll of that costs the city almost twenty two dollars.”

“Sorry sir, I got caught up in the heat of the moment.”

“Okay, just settle down and give me the details.”

“Well sir, I haven’t been sleeping well so I am taking this new medication . . .”

“No, no, no , no, tell me about the details of this robbery.”

“Sorry sir, my new meds make me a little jittery. Over here is the exact scene of the crime, Locker No. 190. You can see right there, sir; somebody hit the lock with a small hammer and the whole door fell off.”

“Sergeant, who drew that chalk outline on the floor?”

“I made that sir. The head janitor, Moe D'Lawn, is the one who discovered the locker was open. He got so excited; he tripped on his untied shoelaces. It’s the only evidence I could find.”

“Your only evidence is a pair of shoelaces?”

“Oh no sir, the janitors body is the evidence.”

“So where’s my evidence?”

“Oh, Moe’s shift was over so he told me he’s going home to take a shower.”

“A SHOWER! Are you kidding sergeant mature, there goes our only evidence. Get a squad car over to his house and do not let that man take a shower.”

“Yes sir, but he’s not home.”

“Well where is he?”

“Ahhh sir, he’s standing right behind you. I told him not to go home.”

“Good thinking. Can we rule him out as the perp.”

“I think so sir. He makes a good living here; I bet he’s pulling down a minimum wage salary. No reason for him to steal some old green rock.”

“Don’t tell Moe but on the way over here, I made a call to an amateur gem collector and from my description of the gem, he appraised it’s value anywhere from $1,500 to 1.3 million dollars.”

“Sir, is it okay for Moe to go home and shower?”

“Sure, and tell him to really scrub his hair.”

“Why sir.”

“Looks like he has a bad case of dandruff.”

“Sir, I did locate a lady who said she witnessed everything.”

“Sergeant, I’d like to talk to her, where is she and what’s her name.”

“Her name is Ophelia Paine, she works over there at the snack bar but she’s standing right behind Moe. Sir, you should know, she told me in confidence, Moe is her boyfriend.”

“Sergeant, does Moe know this bit of information?”

“I don’t think so, sir, I think it’s a secret, but let’s talk to her.”

“Ms. Paine, my name is detective, Chris P. Bacon, can you tell me exactly what you saw?”

“Well, I was workin’ my usual twelve hour candy counter shift when I looked up and saw Moe go flyin’ thru the air and land on his back. He made a big plopping sound and so I hollered to him, Hey Moe, what happened to you and he yelled back, Don’t worry Ophelia, I just tripped over my shoelaces. I gotta’ learn to tie them some time.”

“Ahhh Ms. Paine, I was asking about the giant emerald that has been in this locker for over two years. Did you see who broke the lock and took the gem?”

“What the heck was a giant emerald doing in that storage locker? Nobody told me about it. You know, for a little extra money under the table, I could have been guarding that locker for you.”

“That’s okay Ms. Paine, it’s all water under the bridge now so you can go back to your candy counter.”

Now back to this crime scene, Sergeant, did you dust the locker door for prints?”

“Ahhh no sir, I forgot to bring the dust, but I have a lint roller brush with me, will that help?”

“Yeah, give it to me, I’ve got dog hair all over my pants. Yesterday, my wife Anita Bacon, brought home a stray shaggy dog. She named him Katz.”

“Sir, since the emerald weighed almost 400 pounds, how do you think the crook got it out of the station.”

“Sergeant, you can’t say the person who took the gem is a crook. Maybe he just borrowed it and is going to bring it back.”

“But detective, why would anybody bring the rock back if they stole it?”

“Please don't say he stole it, we don’t yet know his motive for stealing it.”

“All I know, sir is that, it would take two men and a small boy to carry that big of a rock out of here.”

“Excellent sergeant, you just cracked the case. Let’s go find two men and a small boy and then we’ll find the emerald.”

“Good thinking sir, I guess that’s why you get paid the big bucks.”

“No sergeant, my money is the same size as your money, I just get paid a lot more bucks than you do.”

“Sir, that’s why I want to be a detective someday. I want to get paid lots of those big bucks.”

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Written by Yankeedoodle30
Episode II: Fun in a Bus Station
A one-of-a-kind geological artifact, a 380 lb. uncut emerald, has gone missing from a storage locker at the local Greyhound Bus Terminal located on the other side of the tracks in the bad part of the city. The owner of the green rock, nicknamed Kryptonite, is unknown. 

The humongous rock came into police custody as evidence in a shoplifting case, two years previous at the local Wal-Mart, two blocks from the bus terminal, fortunately, located on the good side of the tracks. Because the evidence lockers at the police station were too small, the big rock was put into the bus locker for safekeeping.

Detective Chris P. Bacon, pulled up to the bus station in his late model unmarked police cruiser. The call about the missing emerald had spoiled his plans for the evening, and now it was 10:30 pm. He locked his cruiser and peeled his sunglasses of his block shaped head. Inside the station he waved at Sergeant Less Mature who was using way too much yellow crime scene tape to mark the location of the crime.

“Sergeant, go easy on that crime scene tape, a hundred foot roll of that costs the city almost twenty two dollars.”

“Sorry sir, I got caught up in the heat of the moment.”

“Okay, just settle down and give me the details.”

“Well sir, I haven’t been sleeping well so I am taking this new medication . . .”

“No, no, no , no, tell me about the details of this robbery.”

“Sorry sir, my new meds make me a little jittery. Over here is the exact scene of the crime, Locker No. 190. You can see right there, sir; somebody hit the lock with a small hammer and the whole door fell off.”

“Sergeant, who drew that chalk outline on the floor?”

“I made that sir. The head janitor, Moe D'Lawn, is the one who discovered the locker was open. He got so excited; he tripped on his untied shoelaces. It’s the only evidence I could find.”

“Your only evidence is a pair of shoelaces?”

“Oh no sir, the janitors body is the evidence.”

“So where’s my evidence?”

“Oh, Moe’s shift was over so he told me he’s going home to take a shower.”

“A SHOWER! Are you kidding sergeant mature, there goes our only evidence. Get a squad car over to his house and do not let that man take a shower.”

“Yes sir, but he’s not home.”

“Well where is he?”

“Ahhh sir, he’s standing right behind you. I told him not to go home.”

“Good thinking. Can we rule him out as the perp.”

“I think so sir. He makes a good living here; I bet he’s pulling down a minimum wage salary. No reason for him to steal some old green rock.”

“Don’t tell Moe but on the way over here, I made a call to an amateur gem collector and from my description of the gem, he appraised it’s value anywhere from $1,500 to 1.3 million dollars.”

“Sir, is it okay for Moe to go home and shower?”

“Sure, and tell him to really scrub his hair.”

“Why sir.”

“Looks like he has a bad case of dandruff.”

“Sir, I did locate a lady who said she witnessed everything.”


“Sergeant, I’d like to talk to her, where is she and what’s her name.”

“Her name is Ophelia Paine, she works over there at the snack bar but she’s standing right behind Moe. Sir, you should know, she told me in confidence, Moe is her boyfriend.”

“Sergeant, does Moe know this bit of information?”

“I don’t think so, sir, I think it’s a secret, but let’s talk to her.”

“Ms. Paine, my name is detective, Chris P. Bacon, can you tell me exactly what you saw?”

“Well, I was workin’ my usual twelve hour candy counter shift when I looked up and saw Moe go flyin’ thru the air and land on his back. He made a big plopping sound and so I hollered to him, Hey Moe, what happened to you and he yelled back, Don’t worry Ophelia, I just tripped over my shoelaces. I gotta’ learn to tie them some time.”

“Ahhh Ms. Paine, I was asking about the giant emerald that has been in this locker for over two years. Did you see who broke the lock and took the gem?”

“What the heck was a giant emerald doing in that storage locker? Nobody told me about it. You know, for a little extra money under the table, I could have been guarding that locker for you.”

“That’s okay Ms. Paine, it’s all water under the bridge now so you can go back to your candy counter.”

Now back to this crime scene, Sergeant, did you dust the locker door for prints?”

“Ahhh no sir, I forgot to bring the dust, but I have a lint roller brush with me, will that help?”

“Yeah, give it to me, I’ve got dog hair all over my pants. Yesterday, my wife Anita Bacon, brought home a stray shaggy dog. She named him Katz.”

“Sir, since the emerald weighed almost 400 pounds, how do you think the crook got it out of the station.”

“Sergeant, you can’t say the person who took the gem is a crook. Maybe he just borrowed it and is going to bring it back.”

“But detective, why would anybody bring the rock back if they stole it?”

“Please don't say he stole it, we don’t yet know his motive for stealing it.”

“All I know, sir is that, it would take two men and a small boy to carry that big of a rock out of here.”

“Excellent sergeant, you just cracked the case. Let’s go find two men and a small boy and then we’ll find the emerald.”

“Good thinking sir, I guess that’s why you get paid the big bucks.”

“No sergeant, my money is the same size as your money, I just get paid a lot more bucks than you do.”

“Sir, that’s why I want to be a detective someday. I want to get paid lots of those big bucks.”
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Tell me about the best day or the worst day in your life, but write it in second person.
Written by Yankeedoodle30

My worst pet day was when

Yankee Doodle Dandy, an American Foxhound, my best friend and cohort, died just one day before her tenth birthday. Rest in peace Doodle. (All dogs go to heaven)

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Tell me about the best day or the worst day in your life, but write it in second person.
Written by Yankeedoodle30
My worst pet day was when
Yankee Doodle Dandy, an American Foxhound, my best friend and cohort, died just one day before her tenth birthday. Rest in peace Doodle. (All dogs go to heaven)
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You've just won a recording-setting lottery...what do you do next? 150 coins for the most inventive non-rhyming response.
Written by Yankeedoodle30

Operating Costs

Dear Mom, 

I just won the lottery. What do you think I should do next? I was thinking of paying the taxes and then giving 90% away to a good cause and keeping 10%. I don't need a whole lot of money to live. 

Love donnie

Dear Son, 

Let's be practical. Your not thinking clearly about your future. If you give 90% of your winnings away, after paying taxes, make sure your money is going to a good cause

The way you can tell a good cause is by determining how much money they spend operating their charity. My rule of thumb is: 5% for operating costs, and 95% for recipients of the charity.

Love Mom,

Dear Mom, 

You rule of thumb is exactly right. I'll donate 95% of my winnings, after taxes, to a good cause and use 5% for my daily operating costs.

Love donnie

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You've just won a recording-setting lottery...what do you do next? 150 coins for the most inventive non-rhyming response.
Written by Yankeedoodle30
Operating Costs

Dear Mom, 
I just won the lottery. What do you think I should do next? I was thinking of paying the taxes and then giving 90% away to a good cause and keeping 10%. I don't need a whole lot of money to live. 
Love donnie

Dear Son, 
Let's be practical. Your not thinking clearly about your future. If you give 90% of your winnings away, after paying taxes, make sure your money is going to a good cause
The way you can tell a good cause is by determining how much money they spend operating their charity. My rule of thumb is: 5% for operating costs, and 95% for recipients of the charity.
Love Mom,

Dear Mom, 
You rule of thumb is exactly right. I'll donate 95% of my winnings, after taxes, to a good cause and use 5% for my daily operating costs.
Love donnie


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Written by Yankeedoodle30

Emotional Avenue Freeze-Out

    Your Emotional Kingdom has gone asunder

            from an attack inside your walls

      You lived your life, never thinking of the 

       future except a storm blew in that day

      It overthrew your beating heart, froze the 

last bits of your heart and vowed to never go away

  There’s  Nothing Colder  Than  A  Frozen  Heart

      An iced wind blew through your hair that

         day, didn’t you hear the thunder, didn’t

         you see the frozen ice coming your way

         Your feelings have disappeared because

      a darkness shrouds you now, your suffering 

           an emotional never-ending frost bite 

    There’s  Nothing  Colder  Than  A Frozen Heart

          You still have a fortune in feelings but

              they are buried too deep to find 

             You say you don't want to chance it

               you've been hurt too much before

           You full well know a heart made of ice 

          is easy to break. Your heart may be frozen 

              but you’re still alive and who knows 

                when the spring thaw is coming

      There’s  Nothing  Colder  Than  A  Frozen  Heart

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Written by Yankeedoodle30
Emotional Avenue Freeze-Out
    Your Emotional Kingdom has gone asunder
            from an attack inside your walls

      You lived your life, never thinking of the 
       future except a storm blew in that day

      It overthrew your beating heart, froze the 
last bits of your heart and vowed to never go away

  There’s  Nothing Colder  Than  A  Frozen  Heart

      An iced wind blew through your hair that
         day, didn’t you hear the thunder, didn’t
         you see the frozen ice coming your way

         Your feelings have disappeared because
      a darkness shrouds you now, your suffering 
           an emotional never-ending frost bite 

    There’s  Nothing  Colder  Than  A Frozen Heart

          You still have a fortune in feelings but
              they are buried too deep to find 

             You say you don't want to chance it
               you've been hurt too much before

           You full well know a heart made of ice 
          is easy to break. Your heart may be frozen 
              but you’re still alive and who knows 
                when the spring thaw is coming

      There’s  Nothing  Colder  Than  A  Frozen  Heart
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Written by Yankeedoodle30

The Greasy Spoon

“It’s illegal, in all fifty states,” that’s all he she said, but that wasn’t my question.

I had approached the attractive woman in her mid twenties with trepidation. I was in a blue funk when I walked into the diner and sat down. I shivered as goose bumps rose on my arms. I hoped no one saw me shiver. I always thought that was something a guy shouldn’t do. I looked around. Good. Everyone had been oblivious to my shiver except for a woman sitting near the condiments counter.

She smiled.

I shivered again and turned away. Holy crap, should I just pack it in and leave, or maybe stick it out and stay. Nobody ever smiled at me, especially a nice looking woman; she looked my age. To the opposite sex, I had always been invisible. My feet were cold and it wasn’t because I wasn’t wearing socks. Sometimes I broke out into a cold sweat but not this time. This time was different. I glanced her way.

We locked yes and she smiled.

I faked having dirty glasses, removed them and rubbed them on my Goodwill tee shirt. I went there on Tuesdays, pink tag tee shirts, most of them brand new, were $1.39. With lenses like the bottom of two coke bottles, I spent a good half-minute polishing each one.

I felt a heart palpitation. Typical for a social situation. I adjusted the thick rims of my pitch-black frames. I didn’t dare look at her. What if she was still staring? 

I had a dreadful thought. What if she had been smiling at some good-looking guy sitting right behind me. I thought, it’s a good thing I didn’t acknowledge her smile with a wave or a nod that would have meant sudden death to my ego.

I pretended to stretch, rotated my head around my pretend stiff neck and snuck a not so casual peak behind me. Nobody was there.

I thought, a soda will settle my stomach. That would require speaking a minimal amount of words to the lady at the counter.

I practiced my line silently. “I’ll have a medium soda.”

Then I’d say a kindly, but neutral, thank you.” Thanks seemed too informal and might suggest I wanted to chat and I even considered one time saying, “Thank you very much” but then I realized, saying ‘very much’ was giving away too much of my feelings.

I walked up to the counter and I looked up at the menu. That was dumb. I was just ordering a medium non-descript soda.

The woman's voice jolted me to my senses. “May I help you?”

This was crazy; I was still gazing at the menu board. The lady must be thinking, “Why didn’t this jerk decide what he wanted rather than making me wait. Can’t he see there’s a long as long as freight train behind him.

I froze. I forgot my the line momentarily . . . and then said, “Medium soda, please.”

I threw in the please for wasting her time.

She responded curtly, as if doing me a favor by asking, “Small or large, no medium.”

Geez, what now. I had to make a split second decision, some people can be so demanding. 

I went for broke. Small.”

I figured I’d save myself time filling a small cup, depending on how small the cup was.

She squinted at me, as if I had leprosy and parts were falling off my body at an alarming rate. “What kind? “

Geeze, more questions. What did she mean what kind. I had said small but what if she hadn’t heard me, so I repeated my size. “Small” I didn’t say please, she was starting to annoy me.

The she got mad. “No, no, no, sir, what kind of soda do you want?”

She was so demanding, why was she being so mean to me. I looked around for the auto dispensing soda machine. Why did she want to know? Were some flavors expensive than others? Then it hit me, this wasn’t one of those self-serve places where you loiter and get free refills for the rest of your life, as long as you never left the premises. I panicked and blurted out Coke. I hated coke but I had forgot the name of the clear bubbly soda.

She chomped on her gum and said, “No Coke, Pepsi.”

The first thing that popped into my thick skull was the fact that I hated coke with a passion so I probably would hate Pepsi as well. How different could they taste?

She leaned over the counter. “Sir, if Pepsi okay with you, I don’t got all day to take your drink order.”

I had unconsciously counted every harsh word she had just spoken. Sixteen. That was like sixteen lashes with a cat-of-nine-tails, if I was on a pirate ship.

I realized a response was required. I said. “Pepsi is okay. Thanks."

I had botched my response by saying thanks instead of thank you but I could tell by now, she was fuming mad with me and she wasn’t going to say another word to me for the rest of her life or my life or whichever one came first.

She slammed down the small Pepsi. “Dollar twenty-nine” 

I thought the white polystyrene foam cup was going to collapse. She didn’t spill a drop. She probably had been working here all her dammed life and was too stupid tom get a real job.

I fished in my pocket. Damn it, why didn’t I have my money ready. I knew exactly how much a small soda would cost including tax I also knew I didn’t have two dollars bills, just change. I pulled out a handful of coins, mostly nickels, dimes and pennies and two quarters and dumped them on the counter.

The loud jingle jangling sound made the guy behind me laugh and he said, loud enough for everyone to hear, “Just got paid, huh mister?”

I turned red. The lady said nothing. She started sliding the coins towards her as she counted them. She pushed the remained change at me. A penny went sliding off the counter to its death and fell to the floor. Oh no. No way I was ever gonna’ pick up that penny once it stopped spinning. One time I had tried for a minute, in front of a crowd of people, trying to pry a penny off the floor with my stubby fingers with fingernails chewed down to the cuticles. I had vowed then and there to never consider a penny worth anything and just ignored them from then on. How that penny got in my pocket, I will never know. I grabbed my remaining change, shoved it in my pocket, grabbed my Pepsi and turned to go.

The penny was still spinning and the guy behind me said, “Better get that kid, that’s probably ten percent of your weekly paycheck.”

I ignored the dumb bastard and sat back down at my same spot. The small Pepsi was staring at me. I stared back. Then I noticed a serious problem. 

I cursed under my breath. “That damn, stupid lady didn’t give me a straw.”

I had never been able to drink out of a cup every since Jr. High when Queeny Tyler slipped me a dribble glass during lunch and I ended up soaking my shirt with milk. That’s how I went through high school with the nickname, Donnie Dribbler.

I had actually always wanted to try Pepsi to see if it tasted as bad as Coke and here was a perfect chance to do a taste test. I looked around. The only straw dispenser in the entire diner was right behind the creepy lady that had been staring at me. No way I was going to waste a dollar twenty-nine on this Pepsi so I stood up, and forced my legs to move in the direction of that straw dispenser resting comfortably behind “that woman”. I got within five feet, maybe four and the lady stood up, did a quick side step and planted herself in front of the straws. For me, a lifetime video gamer, that was a hostile action perpetrated against a friendly non-combatant.

 I was not going to take this unjustified abuse and I spit out the words. “Please mam, may I have a straw?”

Damn it. Why did I say please after the way she had moved into my space with extreme prejudice.

She looked in my direction and said, “You know it’s illegal, in all fifty states.”

I was stunned. Where had I been hiding? Under a rock? Since when had straws been outlawed in all fifty states, and when did that happen and why? Did somebody choke on a straw and die and if they were illegal, what the heck were those straws doing sitting on that condiment counter, taunting me, begging me, "come on kid,  we're free, who cares if you break the law, get a backbone looser."

I was pissed and decided it was now or never. I did my own counter side step and reached behind the woman for a straw.

I guess she didn’t see me because her upper body blocked my reach and again she said, but harsher this time. “I said, it’s illegal, in all fifty states.”

I snapped back my arm. Good. She hadn’t seen my bungled attempt, which meant, I was free to try again. I waited five seconds and reached out.

I heard her say, “Well, it's up to you, if you want to get arrested.”

Arrested. No way was I going to prison over a Pepsi/Coke taste test, I pulled my arm back. There would be no third attempt, my whole plan had crashed and burned. I was sure everybody in the diner had been watching me and was rooting for me to try a third attempt. 

And then I saw it, the earpiece and the tiny microphone. The lady was staring off into space. She was talking on her cell phone. I felt stupid but I was relieved, at least I wasn’t going to prison and she obviously hadn’t been smiling at me. I reached around her without saying excuse me, which would have been the proper thing to say, grabbed a handful of straws and marched back to my Pepsi, waiting to be taste tested.

I looked around the joint; no one was looking at me. I felt good for the first time in a long time. I felt like Spartacus, I was the victor. I wanted to yell out, I AM SPARTACUS but that would have pushed the whole experience over the top so I sat down, dipped one of the fistful of straws into the small cup filled with Pepsi and took a good suck.

I swished it around, and swallowed it. It would take a second strong straw suck to confirm my taste test decision. I swirled the liquid around and swallowed it.

I looked back at the lady on the phone. I smiled and waved, until I got her attention, then I lifted my cup as if to say, “Here’s lookin’ at you baby”. I winked. I had never winked at a broad before, it felt good.

I walked out of the diner, everybody called, The Greasy Spoon. I had left my small Pepsi on the table for someone else to throw away. I felt empowered because the day hadn’t been a total loss. I would always remember it as the day I found out once and for all, I hated Pepsi as much as I hated Coke.

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Written by Yankeedoodle30
The Greasy Spoon
“It’s illegal, in all fifty states,” that’s all he she said, but that wasn’t my question.

I had approached the attractive woman in her mid twenties with trepidation. I was in a blue funk when I walked into the diner and sat down. I shivered as goose bumps rose on my arms. I hoped no one saw me shiver. I always thought that was something a guy shouldn’t do. I looked around. Good. Everyone had been oblivious to my shiver except for a woman sitting near the condiments counter.

She smiled.

I shivered again and turned away. Holy crap, should I just pack it in and leave, or maybe stick it out and stay. Nobody ever smiled at me, especially a nice looking woman; she looked my age. To the opposite sex, I had always been invisible. My feet were cold and it wasn’t because I wasn’t wearing socks. Sometimes I broke out into a cold sweat but not this time. This time was different. I glanced her way.

We locked yes and she smiled.

I faked having dirty glasses, removed them and rubbed them on my Goodwill tee shirt. I went there on Tuesdays, pink tag tee shirts, most of them brand new, were $1.39. With lenses like the bottom of two coke bottles, I spent a good half-minute polishing each one.
I felt a heart palpitation. Typical for a social situation. I adjusted the thick rims of my pitch-black frames. I didn’t dare look at her. What if she was still staring? 

I had a dreadful thought. What if she had been smiling at some good-looking guy sitting right behind me. I thought, it’s a good thing I didn’t acknowledge her smile with a wave or a nod that would have meant sudden death to my ego.

I pretended to stretch, rotated my head around my pretend stiff neck and snuck a not so casual peak behind me. Nobody was there.

I thought, a soda will settle my stomach. That would require speaking a minimal amount of words to the lady at the counter.

I practiced my line silently. “I’ll have a medium soda.”

Then I’d say a kindly, but neutral, thank you.” Thanks seemed too informal and might suggest I wanted to chat and I even considered one time saying, “Thank you very much” but then I realized, saying ‘very much’ was giving away too much of my feelings.

I walked up to the counter and I looked up at the menu. That was dumb. I was just ordering a medium non-descript soda.

The woman's voice jolted me to my senses. “May I help you?”

This was crazy; I was still gazing at the menu board. The lady must be thinking, “Why didn’t this jerk decide what he wanted rather than making me wait. Can’t he see there’s a long as long as freight train behind him.

I froze. I forgot my the line momentarily . . . and then said, “Medium soda, please.”
I threw in the please for wasting her time.

She responded curtly, as if doing me a favor by asking, “Small or large, no medium.”

Geez, what now. I had to make a split second decision, some people can be so demanding. 

I went for broke. Small.”

I figured I’d save myself time filling a small cup, depending on how small the cup was.

She squinted at me, as if I had leprosy and parts were falling off my body at an alarming rate. “What kind? “

Geeze, more questions. What did she mean what kind. I had said small but what if she hadn’t heard me, so I repeated my size. “Small” I didn’t say please, she was starting to annoy me.

The she got mad. “No, no, no, sir, what kind of soda do you want?”

She was so demanding, why was she being so mean to me. I looked around for the auto dispensing soda machine. Why did she want to know? Were some flavors expensive than others? Then it hit me, this wasn’t one of those self-serve places where you loiter and get free refills for the rest of your life, as long as you never left the premises. I panicked and blurted out Coke. I hated coke but I had forgot the name of the clear bubbly soda.

She chomped on her gum and said, “No Coke, Pepsi.”

The first thing that popped into my thick skull was the fact that I hated coke with a passion so I probably would hate Pepsi as well. How different could they taste?

She leaned over the counter. “Sir, if Pepsi okay with you, I don’t got all day to take your drink order.”

I had unconsciously counted every harsh word she had just spoken. Sixteen. That was like sixteen lashes with a cat-of-nine-tails, if I was on a pirate ship.

I realized a response was required. I said. “Pepsi is okay. Thanks."

I had botched my response by saying thanks instead of thank you but I could tell by now, she was fuming mad with me and she wasn’t going to say another word to me for the rest of her life or my life or whichever one came first.

She slammed down the small Pepsi. “Dollar twenty-nine” 

I thought the white polystyrene foam cup was going to collapse. She didn’t spill a drop. She probably had been working here all her dammed life and was too stupid tom get a real job.

I fished in my pocket. Damn it, why didn’t I have my money ready. I knew exactly how much a small soda would cost including tax I also knew I didn’t have two dollars bills, just change. I pulled out a handful of coins, mostly nickels, dimes and pennies and two quarters and dumped them on the counter.

The loud jingle jangling sound made the guy behind me laugh and he said, loud enough for everyone to hear, “Just got paid, huh mister?”

I turned red. The lady said nothing. She started sliding the coins towards her as she counted them. She pushed the remained change at me. A penny went sliding off the counter to its death and fell to the floor. Oh no. No way I was ever gonna’ pick up that penny once it stopped spinning. One time I had tried for a minute, in front of a crowd of people, trying to pry a penny off the floor with my stubby fingers with fingernails chewed down to the cuticles. I had vowed then and there to never consider a penny worth anything and just ignored them from then on. How that penny got in my pocket, I will never know. I grabbed my remaining change, shoved it in my pocket, grabbed my Pepsi and turned to go.

The penny was still spinning and the guy behind me said, “Better get that kid, that’s probably ten percent of your weekly paycheck.”

I ignored the dumb bastard and sat back down at my same spot. The small Pepsi was staring at me. I stared back. Then I noticed a serious problem. 

I cursed under my breath. “That damn, stupid lady didn’t give me a straw.”

I had never been able to drink out of a cup every since Jr. High when Queeny Tyler slipped me a dribble glass during lunch and I ended up soaking my shirt with milk. That’s how I went through high school with the nickname, Donnie Dribbler.

I had actually always wanted to try Pepsi to see if it tasted as bad as Coke and here was a perfect chance to do a taste test. I looked around. The only straw dispenser in the entire diner was right behind the creepy lady that had been staring at me. No way I was going to waste a dollar twenty-nine on this Pepsi so I stood up, and forced my legs to move in the direction of that straw dispenser resting comfortably behind “that woman”. I got within five feet, maybe four and the lady stood up, did a quick side step and planted herself in front of the straws. For me, a lifetime video gamer, that was a hostile action perpetrated against a friendly non-combatant.

 I was not going to take this unjustified abuse and I spit out the words. “Please mam, may I have a straw?”

Damn it. Why did I say please after the way she had moved into my space with extreme prejudice.

She looked in my direction and said, “You know it’s illegal, in all fifty states.”

I was stunned. Where had I been hiding? Under a rock? Since when had straws been outlawed in all fifty states, and when did that happen and why? Did somebody choke on a straw and die and if they were illegal, what the heck were those straws doing sitting on that condiment counter, taunting me, begging me, "come on kid,  we're free, who cares if you break the law, get a backbone looser."

I was pissed and decided it was now or never. I did my own counter side step and reached behind the woman for a straw.

I guess she didn’t see me because her upper body blocked my reach and again she said, but harsher this time. “I said, it’s illegal, in all fifty states.”

I snapped back my arm. Good. She hadn’t seen my bungled attempt, which meant, I was free to try again. I waited five seconds and reached out.

I heard her say, “Well, it's up to you, if you want to get arrested.”

Arrested. No way was I going to prison over a Pepsi/Coke taste test, I pulled my arm back. There would be no third attempt, my whole plan had crashed and burned. I was sure everybody in the diner had been watching me and was rooting for me to try a third attempt. 

And then I saw it, the earpiece and the tiny microphone. The lady was staring off into space. She was talking on her cell phone. I felt stupid but I was relieved, at least I wasn’t going to prison and she obviously hadn’t been smiling at me. I reached around her without saying excuse me, which would have been the proper thing to say, grabbed a handful of straws and marched back to my Pepsi, waiting to be taste tested.

I looked around the joint; no one was looking at me. I felt good for the first time in a long time. I felt like Spartacus, I was the victor. I wanted to yell out, I AM SPARTACUS but that would have pushed the whole experience over the top so I sat down, dipped one of the fistful of straws into the small cup filled with Pepsi and took a good suck.
I swished it around, and swallowed it. It would take a second strong straw suck to confirm my taste test decision. I swirled the liquid around and swallowed it.

I looked back at the lady on the phone. I smiled and waved, until I got her attention, then I lifted my cup as if to say, “Here’s lookin’ at you baby”. I winked. I had never winked at a broad before, it felt good.

I walked out of the diner, everybody called, The Greasy Spoon. I had left my small Pepsi on the table for someone else to throw away. I felt empowered because the day hadn’t been a total loss. I would always remember it as the day I found out once and for all, I hated Pepsi as much as I hated Coke.






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Written by Yankeedoodle30 in portal Comedy

Beware of Bloody Mary

A guy walked into a bar. I’d like a Gin & Tonic with some liquid Activator, shaken, not stirred. The bar man said, I’m sorry, were fresh out of liquid Activators, how about I get you Bloody Mary instead, my regular customers say she is better than any liquid Activator they ever drank.

Okay, give me Bloody Mary, but if she doesn’t Activate me, she’ll have to give me my money back.”

“Oh don’t worry about that, Bloody Mary has never given an Activator refund in her life, in fact, she has a policy where, if you’re unhappy with her Activator for any reason, she will give you double your money back.”

Sounds like a good deal. How much does she charge for an Activation?”

“Oh that is negotiable with Mary, it depends what kind of Activation treatment you want and how long you want it to last."

"Tell me this, has any guy come in here, paid his money, got the full Activation treatment for all night, and then said they didn’t like the Activation treatment and gotten double their money back."

"Oh sure. Every guy that comes in here for an Activation does that. They all figure it s good way to get Activated and make back twice the money. It’s quite the scam. That’s why Bloody Mary has no repeat business, anybody that asks for a refund, will eventually die."

"Why do they die."

"Well she tricks them into having a free Activation and then she Activates them to death.

"Oh I see, but that’s not such a bad way to die."

"Yah, that’s what most of the guys who come in here, say. The hard part is when their wives come looking for their wayward husbands and I have to point them towards Bloody Mary and tell them, she Activated their husbands to death."

"Don’t those women get really upset at Bloody Mary."

"Heck no, every one of them women goes over to Bloody Mary gives her a big snugly hug, buys her a couple of drinks and then puts a healthy tip in her tip jar."

"Yeah, but what about me, I’m single."

"Well then, may I suggest you go over to Bloody Mary right now, give her a snugly hug, buy her a couple of drinks and put a healthy tip in her tip jar."

"Ahhh, on second thought, I don’t think I need to be Activated. See you around."

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Written by Yankeedoodle30 in portal Comedy
Beware of Bloody Mary
A guy walked into a bar. I’d like a Gin & Tonic with some liquid Activator, shaken, not stirred. The bar man said, I’m sorry, were fresh out of liquid Activators, how about I get you Bloody Mary instead, my regular customers say she is better than any liquid Activator they ever drank.

Okay, give me Bloody Mary, but if she doesn’t Activate me, she’ll have to give me my money back.”

“Oh don’t worry about that, Bloody Mary has never given an Activator refund in her life, in fact, she has a policy where, if you’re unhappy with her Activator for any reason, she will give you double your money back.”

Sounds like a good deal. How much does she charge for an Activation?”

“Oh that is negotiable with Mary, it depends what kind of Activation treatment you want and how long you want it to last."

"Tell me this, has any guy come in here, paid his money, got the full Activation treatment for all night, and then said they didn’t like the Activation treatment and gotten double their money back."

"Oh sure. Every guy that comes in here for an Activation does that. They all figure it s good way to get Activated and make back twice the money. It’s quite the scam. That’s why Bloody Mary has no repeat business, anybody that asks for a refund, will eventually die."

"Why do they die."

"Well she tricks them into having a free Activation and then she Activates them to death.
"Oh I see, but that’s not such a bad way to die."

"Yah, that’s what most of the guys who come in here, say. The hard part is when their wives come looking for their wayward husbands and I have to point them towards Bloody Mary and tell them, she Activated their husbands to death."

"Don’t those women get really upset at Bloody Mary."

"Heck no, every one of them women goes over to Bloody Mary gives her a big snugly hug, buys her a couple of drinks and then puts a healthy tip in her tip jar."

"Yeah, but what about me, I’m single."

"Well then, may I suggest you go over to Bloody Mary right now, give her a snugly hug, buy her a couple of drinks and put a healthy tip in her tip jar."

"Ahhh, on second thought, I don’t think I need to be Activated. See you around."


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Written by Yankeedoodle30

Episode I: Fun in the dark

Forty swat team members went into the Krazy Karnival Funhouse. Forty men didn’t come out the other side. Also missing were the five Carney’s who operated the world’s largest and scariest Funhouse. A twelve-hour search of the portable building for the missing men came up empty.

Detective Chris P. Bacon was called in immediately to investigate the disappearance of the forty-five men.

The Detective  got out of his police cruiser and slowly removed his sunglasses and looked at Sergeant Lester Mature in charge of the crime scene. “What’s with all these kreepy klowns hanging around my crime scene?”

Sergeant mature grinned, “Well sir, this is a Krazy Karnival. You can’t have a karnival without a few krazy kreepy klowns, now can you?”

Detective Bacon snapped at him. “Dammit, Sergeant keep those krazy kreepy klowns away from me, they’re kreeping me out.”

“Yes sir.” The sergeant turned and began rounding up the thirty or so kreepy klowns and herded them back into the tent where the Kreepy Klowns lived, ate and slept.

Detective Bacon slipped under the yellow ‘Crime Scene” tape and knocked on the front door of the Funhouse. He waited for someone to say, “Come in.”

No one said, “Come in,” so he opened the door and entered without being invited in.

He backed out within seconds and yelled at Sergeant Less Mature. “Get over here man, and do your job. We’re both going in there together, I want you to hold my hand, it looks scary in there.”

They locked hands as Sergeant Mature lead the way. They followed a long hallway that split into three hallways and then yielded to yet a larger and wider hallway.

“Why is it so dark in here Sergeant?”

Less responded, “Because we forgot to bring a flashlight.”

“Get on your radio, dammit and have somebody bring us a dozen flashlights.”

“Why so many sir?”

“Just in case they burn out, or I drop one or if I have to use it as a weapon.”

“Don’t you carry a gun sir?”

“Yes, most of the time I do but this morning, I left it at the station.”

“Why did you do that, sir?”

“Because I’m having our official police department gun smithy replace the bullets in my revolver.”

“Why sir.”

“Because in twenty five years on the force, I’ve never fired my gun. I’m not sure if it even works, but I like to always carry a fresh load of ammo.”

“But why can’t you replace your own ammo, sir?”

“It was so long ago, I’ve forgotten how to replace the bullets.”

“It’s not that hard sir, I could teach you.”

“No, this is not the time nor the place Sergeant Mature. Maybe when I retire, I’ll have more time to learn a procedure like that.”

“Anything you say, sir.”

“Now where are those flashlights?”

“Sorry sir, I don’t carry a radio with me.”

“And why not?”

“It’s not in my job description, sir.”

“Well, I’m going to do something about that, as soon as I get back to the station.

How the heck do you communicate to your men without a radio.”

“Well sir, let’s just say, I yell a lot now could I suggest we find the light switch and light up this place.”

“No, it will be more fun stumbling around in the dark. Of course, find the light switch and flip it on.”

“Yes sir, I’ll find the switch, you’re the boss.”

“You darn right I’m the boss. Just because the lights are out and it’s dark in here, I still out rank you sergeant.”

“Sir, even with the lights on, you outrank me so I’m not sure what the difference is.”

“My goodness man, you don’t know the difference between lights off and lights on. Are you color blind?”

“No sir, my eyes are fine, I have 20/20 vision in one eye.”

“What about your other eye?”

“What about it?”

“What’s wrong with your other eye?”

“Nothings wrongs with it, I’ve just never had it tested.”

“Why not?”

“My eye insurance only covers one eye.”

“How did you decide what eye to have tested?”

“Oh you see, my doctor has a spinning wheel and when I spun it, my left eye won.”

“So your’e telling me,you could be legally blind in your right eye and you wouldn’t even know it.”

“I suppose so but I’ve never been arrested so I must not be legally blind.”

“Makes sense to me, Sergeant. So tell me, what are we doing, standing here in the dark?”

“I’m not sure, sir, I think it has something to do with all that yellow crime scene tape out front stretched around the Funhouse.”

“You know, Sergeant, growing up, I always wanted to go to a kreepy funhouse like this but my folks wouldn’t let me.”

“Why not, sir?”

“Well, they told me more than once, it had to do with the fact they didn’t have life insurance on me and if anything bad or dreadful ever happened to me, inside a kreepy funhouse, they would feel really bad if they didn’t get some money from the results of my death.”

“Sir, your folks sound a bit selfish, depriving you of some of the best scares of your life.”

“Oh no, sergeant, it just wasn’t the cost of the ten dollar a month life insurance premium, they also told me they couldn’t afford to buy me one of those expensive Kreepy Funhouse Flashlights, so I just never got to go, even though that same Kreepy Kanival came to town every other month.”

“I guess they didn’t tell you, sir, that with the price of admission, the Funhouse gives you one of their expensive Kreepy Funhouse Flashlights to use in case of an emergency and then they collect them when you come out other side of the funhouse.”

“Thank you sergeant, that’s good to know but what happens if you don’t make it out the other side of the funhouse.”

“Well sir, then they send in a search party to find their Kreepy Funhouse Flashlights.”

“And what happens if they don’t find their Kreepy Funhouse Flashlights?”

“Oh, you get charged a whole lot of money for losing because it cost’s a lot of money to send a forty man swat search team in here every time somebody loses their Kreepy Funhouse Flashlight.”

“Well, I guess my parents were right after all.”

“Right about what, sir?”

“They were right about those Kreepy Funhouse Flashlights being really expensive." 

Everything now makes perfect sense, sergeant, now I know why I was called in on this baffling case.”

“Please tell me sir, I’ve been in the dark ever since I arrived on the scene.”

“Don’t you see, we’re not looking for a missing person, we’re looking for one of those expensive Kreepy Funhouse Flashlight and once we find it, we’ll we able to find our was out of this kreepy funhouse.”

“Sounds good, sir and while we’re looking for that Kreepy Funhouse Flashlight, nothing says we can’t have fun.”

“Yup. That sounds good sergeant, let’s go have some fun in dark, we may even get lucky and find that forty man swat search team.”

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Written by Yankeedoodle30
Episode I: Fun in the dark
Forty swat team members went into the Krazy Karnival Funhouse. Forty men didn’t come out the other side. Also missing were the five Carney’s who operated the world’s largest and scariest Funhouse. A twelve-hour search of the portable building for the missing men came up empty.

Detective Chris P. Bacon was called in immediately to investigate the disappearance of the forty-five men.

The Detective  got out of his police cruiser and slowly removed his sunglasses and looked at Sergeant Lester Mature in charge of the crime scene. “What’s with all these kreepy klowns hanging around my crime scene?”

Sergeant mature grinned, “Well sir, this is a Krazy Karnival. You can’t have a karnival without a few krazy kreepy klowns, now can you?”

Detective Bacon snapped at him. “Dammit, Sergeant keep those krazy kreepy klowns away from me, they’re kreeping me out.”

“Yes sir.” The sergeant turned and began rounding up the thirty or so kreepy klowns and herded them back into the tent where the Kreepy Klowns lived, ate and slept.

Detective Bacon slipped under the yellow ‘Crime Scene” tape and knocked on the front door of the Funhouse. He waited for someone to say, “Come in.”

No one said, “Come in,” so he opened the door and entered without being invited in.

He backed out within seconds and yelled at Sergeant Less Mature. “Get over here man, and do your job. We’re both going in there together, I want you to hold my hand, it looks scary in there.”

They locked hands as Sergeant Mature lead the way. They followed a long hallway that split into three hallways and then yielded to yet a larger and wider hallway.

“Why is it so dark in here Sergeant?”

Less responded, “Because we forgot to bring a flashlight.”

“Get on your radio, dammit and have somebody bring us a dozen flashlights.”

“Why so many sir?”

“Just in case they burn out, or I drop one or if I have to use it as a weapon.”

“Don’t you carry a gun sir?”

“Yes, most of the time I do but this morning, I left it at the station.”

“Why did you do that, sir?”

“Because I’m having our official police department gun smithy replace the bullets in my revolver.”

“Why sir.”

“Because in twenty five years on the force, I’ve never fired my gun. I’m not sure if it even works, but I like to always carry a fresh load of ammo.”

“But why can’t you replace your own ammo, sir?”

“It was so long ago, I’ve forgotten how to replace the bullets.”

“It’s not that hard sir, I could teach you.”

“No, this is not the time nor the place Sergeant Mature. Maybe when I retire, I’ll have more time to learn a procedure like that.”

“Anything you say, sir.”

“Now where are those flashlights?”

“Sorry sir, I don’t carry a radio with me.”

“And why not?”

“It’s not in my job description, sir.”

“Well, I’m going to do something about that, as soon as I get back to the station.
How the heck do you communicate to your men without a radio.”

“Well sir, let’s just say, I yell a lot now could I suggest we find the light switch and light up this place.”

“No, it will be more fun stumbling around in the dark. Of course, find the light switch and flip it on.”

“Yes sir, I’ll find the switch, you’re the boss.”

“You darn right I’m the boss. Just because the lights are out and it’s dark in here, I still out rank you sergeant.”

“Sir, even with the lights on, you outrank me so I’m not sure what the difference is.”

“My goodness man, you don’t know the difference between lights off and lights on. Are you color blind?”

“No sir, my eyes are fine, I have 20/20 vision in one eye.”

“What about your other eye?”

“What about it?”
“What’s wrong with your other eye?”

“Nothings wrongs with it, I’ve just never had it tested.”

“Why not?”

“My eye insurance only covers one eye.”

“How did you decide what eye to have tested?”

“Oh you see, my doctor has a spinning wheel and when I spun it, my left eye won.”

“So your’e telling me,you could be legally blind in your right eye and you wouldn’t even know it.”

“I suppose so but I’ve never been arrested so I must not be legally blind.”

“Makes sense to me, Sergeant. So tell me, what are we doing, standing here in the dark?”

“I’m not sure, sir, I think it has something to do with all that yellow crime scene tape out front stretched around the Funhouse.”

“You know, Sergeant, growing up, I always wanted to go to a kreepy funhouse like this but my folks wouldn’t let me.”

“Why not, sir?”

“Well, they told me more than once, it had to do with the fact they didn’t have life insurance on me and if anything bad or dreadful ever happened to me, inside a kreepy funhouse, they would feel really bad if they didn’t get some money from the results of my death.”

“Sir, your folks sound a bit selfish, depriving you of some of the best scares of your life.”

“Oh no, sergeant, it just wasn’t the cost of the ten dollar a month life insurance premium, they also told me they couldn’t afford to buy me one of those expensive Kreepy Funhouse Flashlights, so I just never got to go, even though that same Kreepy Kanival came to town every other month.”

“I guess they didn’t tell you, sir, that with the price of admission, the Funhouse gives you one of their expensive Kreepy Funhouse Flashlights to use in case of an emergency and then they collect them when you come out other side of the funhouse.”

“Thank you sergeant, that’s good to know but what happens if you don’t make it out the other side of the funhouse.”

“Well sir, then they send in a search party to find their Kreepy Funhouse Flashlights.”

“And what happens if they don’t find their Kreepy Funhouse Flashlights?”

“Oh, you get charged a whole lot of money for losing because it cost’s a lot of money to send a forty man swat search team in here every time somebody loses their Kreepy Funhouse Flashlight.”

“Well, I guess my parents were right after all.”

“Right about what, sir?”

“They were right about those Kreepy Funhouse Flashlights being really expensive." 

Everything now makes perfect sense, sergeant, now I know why I was called in on this baffling case.”

“Please tell me sir, I’ve been in the dark ever since I arrived on the scene.”

“Don’t you see, we’re not looking for a missing person, we’re looking for one of those expensive Kreepy Funhouse Flashlight and once we find it, we’ll we able to find our was out of this kreepy funhouse.”

“Sounds good, sir and while we’re looking for that Kreepy Funhouse Flashlight, nothing says we can’t have fun.”

“Yup. That sounds good sergeant, let’s go have some fun in dark, we may even get lucky and find that forty man swat search team.”
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In celebration of the March 28 release of my latest book, FROM ICE TO ASHES (about the birth of a rebellion on Saturn's moon Titan), I'm putting this challenge forth. Tell a story of a rebellion against Earth by an offworld colony. The person whose story moves me most gets digital copies of every scifi book I've ever published. I'll also do a thorough critique of a short story for the winner. Two runners-up get digital copies of FROM ICE TO ASHES. Visit www.rhettbruno.com for more info.
Written by Yankeedoodle30 in portal Sci-Fi

A mission of madness

The Rebel space warriors,  based on the offworld colony of Newtonia and located on Titan, the second largest moon in the solar system, had been preparing for their attack on Earth for six hundred days. March 28th, 2141 would be recorded in the future history of Earth as the day the blue planet was attacked by a hostile alien force.

Kale Drayton, the leader of the insurrectionary force, had been secretly training Newtonia’s ten thousand gas-mine laborers in order to fight against the totalitarian earth government on Titan and strictly enforced by the oppressive Earthers.

Commander Drayton’s voice echoed in the headsets of the l attacking squadron’s leaders.

“We have only one chance to slip through earth’s defenses. We’re going in with full guns blazing, just like they did in the wild west back in the 19th century. There will be no retreating, either we take down the space shields or we’ll die trying. Report in now”

Each of the fifteen Space Fighter captains clicked their mics, in numerical order, and gave their call signs.

Number fifteen didn’t report in. Drayton keyed his mic and hollered, “Dammit Bruno,

report in now:”

The com lines were silent. Drayton made a command decision. “Bruno has gone rogue, we’re leaving him behind, begin your bombing runs in ten seconds on my mark. Light em’ up Gentleman.”

Drayton had watched so much television programming from the 20th century, his lexicon reflected it in his commands.

Flying single file, to hide their numbers, each fighter maintained a less than safe distance between ships.

Drayton  called out, “Entering outer grid in thirty seconds, arm your weapons leaders.”

With his com channel open, Bruno covertly watched the rebel attack via long range Lidar, a combination of ground penetrating radar and dual band infrared detection.

Bruno clicked his mic, “Sixty seconds to inner shield entry, prepare to fire.” 

Bruno hoped this was the correct frequency to get his message through to earth’s stealth communications systems. Drayton flew into the outer grid and into a barrage of EMP generated fire. It had no effect on their equipment, their EMP jammers were operating at 100% effiency.

Drayton spit out two words. “Break off.”

Each fighter, now under computer control, wove a web of concentrated hydrogen pellets that immediately began falling at 32 feet per second per second into earth’s upper atmosphere.The on board computers, calculated the time till detonation of the inner shield and then turned each ship towards the next barrier.

Drayton blasted through the remnants of the hydrogen gas explosion. This was farther than he had expected to get, the hydrogen pellet detonation (HPD) was only a theory and had never tested. Now it was no longer a theory. If he did die, he at least hoped the technique would be named after him, The Dayton HPD effect, but he doubted it.

Bruno heard his speaker clicked three times – paused and clicked twice. He was relieved. His message had been heard by the Earthers and their defenses had been directed towards the outer ring.

Bruno clicked his mic, and said,“Commander, break off the attack. Mission compromised.”

The earth defense systems were automatically put on hold. Dayton had heard the message but the computer was still in charge and ignored the audible request. Each fighter targeted a single point around the space defense communications defense facility on the ground. The computer coordinated missile strikes were all simultaneous. The last thing the defense shield designers had expected was a simultaneous pinpoint attack.

Before the missiles reached their target, the rebels retreated to their original hiding positions on the far side of earths moon.

Bruno listened to the garbled mayday signals ringing out from the command center. He smiled. Their subterfuge had worked. Phase one of the attack had been successful.

Admiral Veronica Bruno clicked the mic, “Congratulations commander, and a job well done. Now release the full squadron and lets decimate the seat of power for the United Earth Forces.

“Roger that, Admiral Bruno.”

With the command given, and within two hours, Earth had surrendered to the rebel forces and negotiations were scheduled to make Titan it’s own federation with it’s own government to be led by, President Kale Drayton.

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In celebration of the March 28 release of my latest book, FROM ICE TO ASHES (about the birth of a rebellion on Saturn's moon Titan), I'm putting this challenge forth. Tell a story of a rebellion against Earth by an offworld colony. The person whose story moves me most gets digital copies of every scifi book I've ever published. I'll also do a thorough critique of a short story for the winner. Two runners-up get digital copies of FROM ICE TO ASHES. Visit www.rhettbruno.com for more info.
Written by Yankeedoodle30 in portal Sci-Fi
A mission of madness


The Rebel space warriors,  based on the offworld colony of Newtonia and located on Titan, the second largest moon in the solar system, had been preparing for their attack on Earth for six hundred days. March 28th, 2141 would be recorded in the future history of Earth as the day the blue planet was attacked by a hostile alien force.

Kale Drayton, the leader of the insurrectionary force, had been secretly training Newtonia’s ten thousand gas-mine laborers in order to fight against the totalitarian earth government on Titan and strictly enforced by the oppressive Earthers.

Commander Drayton’s voice echoed in the headsets of the l attacking squadron’s leaders.
“We have only one chance to slip through earth’s defenses. We’re going in with full guns blazing, just like they did in the wild west back in the 19th century. There will be no retreating, either we take down the space shields or we’ll die trying. Report in now”

Each of the fifteen Space Fighter captains clicked their mics, in numerical order, and gave their call signs.

Number fifteen didn’t report in. Drayton keyed his mic and hollered, “Dammit Bruno,
report in now:”

The com lines were silent. Drayton made a command decision. “Bruno has gone rogue, we’re leaving him behind, begin your bombing runs in ten seconds on my mark. Light em’ up Gentleman.”

Drayton had watched so much television programming from the 20th century, his lexicon reflected it in his commands.

Flying single file, to hide their numbers, each fighter maintained a less than safe distance between ships.

Drayton  called out, “Entering outer grid in thirty seconds, arm your weapons leaders.”

With his com channel open, Bruno covertly watched the rebel attack via long range Lidar, a combination of ground penetrating radar and dual band infrared detection.

Bruno clicked his mic, “Sixty seconds to inner shield entry, prepare to fire.” 

Bruno hoped this was the correct frequency to get his message through to earth’s stealth communications systems. Drayton flew into the outer grid and into a barrage of EMP generated fire. It had no effect on their equipment, their EMP jammers were operating at 100% effiency.

Drayton spit out two words. “Break off.”

Each fighter, now under computer control, wove a web of concentrated hydrogen pellets that immediately began falling at 32 feet per second per second into earth’s upper atmosphere.The on board computers, calculated the time till detonation of the inner shield and then turned each ship towards the next barrier.

Drayton blasted through the remnants of the hydrogen gas explosion. This was farther than he had expected to get, the hydrogen pellet detonation (HPD) was only a theory and had never tested. Now it was no longer a theory. If he did die, he at least hoped the technique would be named after him, The Dayton HPD effect, but he doubted it.
Bruno heard his speaker clicked three times – paused and clicked twice. He was relieved. His message had been heard by the Earthers and their defenses had been directed towards the outer ring.

Bruno clicked his mic, and said,“Commander, break off the attack. Mission compromised.”

The earth defense systems were automatically put on hold. Dayton had heard the message but the computer was still in charge and ignored the audible request. Each fighter targeted a single point around the space defense communications defense facility on the ground. The computer coordinated missile strikes were all simultaneous. The last thing the defense shield designers had expected was a simultaneous pinpoint attack.
Before the missiles reached their target, the rebels retreated to their original hiding positions on the far side of earths moon.

Bruno listened to the garbled mayday signals ringing out from the command center. He smiled. Their subterfuge had worked. Phase one of the attack had been successful.

Admiral Veronica Bruno clicked the mic, “Congratulations commander, and a job well done. Now release the full squadron and lets decimate the seat of power for the United Earth Forces.

“Roger that, Admiral Bruno.”

With the command given, and within two hours, Earth had surrendered to the rebel forces and negotiations were scheduled to make Titan it’s own federation with it’s own government to be led by, President Kale Drayton.




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We are a literary agency seeking fresh talent. In 200 words or more, demonstrate your writing talent. We will be in touch with any and all promising participants throughout the rest of this quarter.
Written by Yankeedoodle30 in portal Publishing

"Beyond Danger and Adventure"

Upper MG historical fiction  ~43,000 words

Setting: Napoleonic Wars - 1803

One hundred and fifty feet above the Pacific Ocean, twelve-year-old Nicholas Horatio Goodlad stood on the crow’s nest of the HMS Flying Fish, a Royal Navy exploration ship. He clutched the hip-high wood railing while holding tight to his hat. From this vantage point, he could see farther over the horizon than the officers on the quarterdeck, far below. He’d never been comfortable with heights, and braced himself, as he stared through a spyglass. Across the glittering blue sea, he watched a threatening mass of clouds spreading across the distant sky. The previous night he witnessed an eerie white ring circling the moon: an ominous warning that indicated bad weather was approaching.

He hollered down to the captain. “Sir. Looks like we’re in for a heavy blow out of the northeast.”

The captain scanned the horizon and remained quiet as a distant growl of booming thunder confirmed a storm brewing.

Minutes later, as the storm crept closer, Nicholas hailed the captain. “Sir, those clouds are darkening. This isn’t an easy squall. It’s making a beeline for us.”

Unable to see the extent of the storm, Captain Blackwell hollered, “Watch the skies, boy. I’ll decide if this is a difficult storm.”

Half an hour later, jagged lightning streaked through the distant sky. Silver flashes silhouetted the red and purple clouds. Nicholas steadied himself, as the mainmast moved in a nauseating, and jerky elliptical orbit. Riding the wild beast reminded him of ice skating at the end of a line of kids playing crack the whip. A downdraft of cold air rocked his body and plucked the wool cap from his blonde curls. He grabbed for the hat and lost his balance. He plunged over the railing of the crow’s nest. A thick tar-coated rope loomed in front of him and he gripped it tight with both hands. He jolted to a halt. For a minute, he dangled a hundred feet above the main deck until it happened. His grip slipped. He dropped like a lead balloon and collided with a baggy wrinkle; a fluffy rope used to prevent the rigging lines from chafing the sails. Nicholas’ body flipped upside-down and he fell another twenty, stomach-lurching feet. A loop of rope snagged his leg around the ankle and the momentum of the drop propelled him over the railing. When he reached the top of the arc, he stopped momentarily and swung back. He grabbed a loose rope in an attempt to slow the speed of his fall. It did nothing more than strip the skin from his palms. His body slammed into the main mast. Blood rushed to Nicholas’ head. Ruby-red drops from a bleeding nose and split lip rained down. As he gazed down through a confused mass of spars and rigging lines, he spotted Pugwash, the master crewman.

The stout man with a waist as wide as a walrus shook his fist. “Ahoy, you scabby coward. Quit playing monkey boy up there and get down here. There’s a storm rising and you’ve got work to do.”

Nicholas felt queasy and closed his eyes to block the sight of the rolling deck. A quick spasm of nausea hit him and a stomach full of undigested breakfast erupted. The regurgitated mess missed Pugwash by inches. What should he do? If he moved, the loop could easily slip off his foot. A seventy-five foot drop onto the deck would mean sudden death.

The boss man barked, “Boy! Don’t make me come up there, or you’ll be sorry.”

Nicholas didn’t dare twitch a muscle and peeked down through narrow slits. The rotund man was ascending the unsteady ratlines. Then it happened. The ship rolled and the noose holding his foot let go. He fell another twenty feet, grabbed a ratline, and jerked to a stop.

Pugwash cut short his burdensome ascent. “Last chance boy, or I’m taking a switch to you.”

Nicholas clutched the quivering ratlines and descended as an acre of billowing sails, filled to their bursting point, banged against the rigging lines. He jumped onto the deck and grabbed a foul weather hat and coat. He ran off to his duty station. He’d suffered a bloody nose, split lip, bruised ribs and blistered hands, but worst of all was the embarrassing blow to his ego.

The captain, a better navigator than storm watcher, had been caught off guard and hollered to the first mate. “There’s a storm heading our way. All hands on deck. Furl the sails and be quick about it.”

The boson mate blew a shrill whistle and relayed the captain’s message to the sailors below deck. Fifty men scrambled from the hatches and sprinted to their stations.

Sailors called topmen kicked off their shoes and swarmed up the ratlines to the topsails.

Pugwash hollered. "Up, up, you sluggards. We ain’t got time to dawdle.”

The Seventy-knot whirlwinds flattened the topmen against the swaying masts. They held fast to the rigging lines and sidestepped along the footropes hanging from the crossbeams. The men grabbed fistfuls of sailcloth, bunched it together, and repeated the operation until they could no longer lift the waterlogged canvas.

Rain streamed down the captain’s gray beard and he screamed, “Helmsman, turn the bow into the waves.”

Four husky men threw their full weight into the wheel controlling the rudder, struggling to keep control of the ship in the forty-foot waves. As sheets of rain traversed the deck sideways, Nicholas tugged the tar-coated hat over his bulging ears. Along with a dozen deck hands, he helped coil thousands of feet of rigging rope. There’d be no sleep for him tonight and he’d miss the boson mate’s usual wake-up call; rouse up, rouse up - open your eyes - you mighty sailors of the deep.

                            —End of Excerpt—

Book One of a possible series:  The Adventure of a Boy and His Creature

End Note: My Writer's Portfolio is online . . . http://donnelson.writerfolio.com/

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We are a literary agency seeking fresh talent. In 200 words or more, demonstrate your writing talent. We will be in touch with any and all promising participants throughout the rest of this quarter.
Written by Yankeedoodle30 in portal Publishing
"Beyond Danger and Adventure"
Upper MG historical fiction  ~43,000 words
Setting: Napoleonic Wars - 1803

One hundred and fifty feet above the Pacific Ocean, twelve-year-old Nicholas Horatio Goodlad stood on the crow’s nest of the HMS Flying Fish, a Royal Navy exploration ship. He clutched the hip-high wood railing while holding tight to his hat. From this vantage point, he could see farther over the horizon than the officers on the quarterdeck, far below. He’d never been comfortable with heights, and braced himself, as he stared through a spyglass. Across the glittering blue sea, he watched a threatening mass of clouds spreading across the distant sky. The previous night he witnessed an eerie white ring circling the moon: an ominous warning that indicated bad weather was approaching.
He hollered down to the captain. “Sir. Looks like we’re in for a heavy blow out of the northeast.”

The captain scanned the horizon and remained quiet as a distant growl of booming thunder confirmed a storm brewing.

Minutes later, as the storm crept closer, Nicholas hailed the captain. “Sir, those clouds are darkening. This isn’t an easy squall. It’s making a beeline for us.”

Unable to see the extent of the storm, Captain Blackwell hollered, “Watch the skies, boy. I’ll decide if this is a difficult storm.”

Half an hour later, jagged lightning streaked through the distant sky. Silver flashes silhouetted the red and purple clouds. Nicholas steadied himself, as the mainmast moved in a nauseating, and jerky elliptical orbit. Riding the wild beast reminded him of ice skating at the end of a line of kids playing crack the whip. A downdraft of cold air rocked his body and plucked the wool cap from his blonde curls. He grabbed for the hat and lost his balance. He plunged over the railing of the crow’s nest. A thick tar-coated rope loomed in front of him and he gripped it tight with both hands. He jolted to a halt. For a minute, he dangled a hundred feet above the main deck until it happened. His grip slipped. He dropped like a lead balloon and collided with a baggy wrinkle; a fluffy rope used to prevent the rigging lines from chafing the sails. Nicholas’ body flipped upside-down and he fell another twenty, stomach-lurching feet. A loop of rope snagged his leg around the ankle and the momentum of the drop propelled him over the railing. When he reached the top of the arc, he stopped momentarily and swung back. He grabbed a loose rope in an attempt to slow the speed of his fall. It did nothing more than strip the skin from his palms. His body slammed into the main mast. Blood rushed to Nicholas’ head. Ruby-red drops from a bleeding nose and split lip rained down. As he gazed down through a confused mass of spars and rigging lines, he spotted Pugwash, the master crewman.

The stout man with a waist as wide as a walrus shook his fist. “Ahoy, you scabby coward. Quit playing monkey boy up there and get down here. There’s a storm rising and you’ve got work to do.”

Nicholas felt queasy and closed his eyes to block the sight of the rolling deck. A quick spasm of nausea hit him and a stomach full of undigested breakfast erupted. The regurgitated mess missed Pugwash by inches. What should he do? If he moved, the loop could easily slip off his foot. A seventy-five foot drop onto the deck would mean sudden death.

The boss man barked, “Boy! Don’t make me come up there, or you’ll be sorry.”

Nicholas didn’t dare twitch a muscle and peeked down through narrow slits. The rotund man was ascending the unsteady ratlines. Then it happened. The ship rolled and the noose holding his foot let go. He fell another twenty feet, grabbed a ratline, and jerked to a stop.

Pugwash cut short his burdensome ascent. “Last chance boy, or I’m taking a switch to you.”

Nicholas clutched the quivering ratlines and descended as an acre of billowing sails, filled to their bursting point, banged against the rigging lines. He jumped onto the deck and grabbed a foul weather hat and coat. He ran off to his duty station. He’d suffered a bloody nose, split lip, bruised ribs and blistered hands, but worst of all was the embarrassing blow to his ego.

The captain, a better navigator than storm watcher, had been caught off guard and hollered to the first mate. “There’s a storm heading our way. All hands on deck. Furl the sails and be quick about it.”

The boson mate blew a shrill whistle and relayed the captain’s message to the sailors below deck. Fifty men scrambled from the hatches and sprinted to their stations.

Sailors called topmen kicked off their shoes and swarmed up the ratlines to the topsails.
Pugwash hollered. "Up, up, you sluggards. We ain’t got time to dawdle.”

The Seventy-knot whirlwinds flattened the topmen against the swaying masts. They held fast to the rigging lines and sidestepped along the footropes hanging from the crossbeams. The men grabbed fistfuls of sailcloth, bunched it together, and repeated the operation until they could no longer lift the waterlogged canvas.

Rain streamed down the captain’s gray beard and he screamed, “Helmsman, turn the bow into the waves.”

Four husky men threw their full weight into the wheel controlling the rudder, struggling to keep control of the ship in the forty-foot waves. As sheets of rain traversed the deck sideways, Nicholas tugged the tar-coated hat over his bulging ears. Along with a dozen deck hands, he helped coil thousands of feet of rigging rope. There’d be no sleep for him tonight and he’d miss the boson mate’s usual wake-up call; rouse up, rouse up - open your eyes - you mighty sailors of the deep.
                            —End of Excerpt—

Book One of a possible series:  The Adventure of a Boy and His Creature
End Note: My Writer's Portfolio is online . . . http://donnelson.writerfolio.com/
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