Register a SA Forums Account here!
JOINING THE SA FORUMS WILL REMOVE THIS BIG AD, THE ANNOYING UNDERLINED ADS, AND STUPID INTERSTITIAL ADS!!!

You can: log in, read the tech support FAQ, or request your lost password. This dumb message (and those ads) will appear on every screen until you register! Get rid of this crap by registering your own SA Forums Account and joining roughly 150,000 Goons, for the one-time price of $9.95! We charge money because it costs us money per month for bills, and since we don't believe in showing ads to our users, we try to make the money back through forum registrations.
Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.



sebmojo posted:

Mariah Cocksucking Carey

Chairchucker posted:

I had better like the way she is portrayed.

:crossarms:

Adbot
ADBOT LOVES YOU

Bad Seafood
Dec 10, 2010

If you must blink, do it now.


Four in the morning. I pick the best times to edit.

Lighthouse (545 words)

In the twenty-three years I have known him, never once has my father permitted me to touch his face.

No, no. That’s a lie. Sorry, yes. I’m sure of it. I just don’t remember. When I was small I am sure he permitted it. A small child so alone and curious. It was expected then. Not now that I was older. It was then that he took exception to it. He understood, I am sure, but did not like to be reminded. I understood, of course, yet could not help myself but to envy the child who had so intimately known his father’s face. His father who now lived faceless.

Nevertheless he was my father, I his son, and today his birthday.

It was Claudia who greeted us. My sister, that fascist songbird. A sweet-natured girl with venomous teeth. Her gentle cruelty is unmistakable. I fear for her husband sometimes. Her future one, I mean. The current model, more occasionally. Wet and folded, I smiled and extended my umbrella into the darkness where it was taken from me and vanished into the void. For a moment I stood adrift until Audrey pulled me back into the intimacy of close contact. I introduced her. Audrey, like Audrey Hepburn. A charming girl I’d met in the city just this year. Mixed Japanese, or so I was told. I decided not to embellish. I’d never seen one, after all.

In the wake of our welcome, the tipper-tap of the rain resumed its typewriter concert on the shingles of the roof. It stood muffled now and uncertain, but enough for Caroline to strike. Under temperate conditions I'd have caught her, but masked in rain the girl moved invisible. I felt her hands at my shoulders as she yanked me down to her level. Her laugh was mine. I’m sure she is beautiful. I combed her hair and clasped her face. There was a mark on her cheek. It shouldn’t have worried me but it did. Caroline will be Caroline.

“Stirring up some trouble I see.”

“Only a little.”

“Mother’d probably prefer that you didn’t.”

I felt the sway of her face between my palms. She disagreed.

“Mom doesn’t understand anything.”

Well that was certainly true enough. I smiled and stood and returned to the world of adults. Mother was waiting apparently. And father with her. Claudia took Audrey. She would show her around. Left by the door, I shucked off my shoes to reacquaint myself with my preferred method of navigation. Beyond the callous of the wood-furnished entry rolled the endless shag of the hallway carpet. Mother and father were in the living room, whose soft and simple carpet I could never forget. Mother herself didn’t talk much these days. Not that she’d talked much then either. But she’d let me touch her face, and that was enough. I counted more wrinkles this year, a number I decided I would keep to myself. Even so she smiled.

I quarter turned to father. I always quartered turned to father. Always a quarter turn and always to the right. I offered my hand to the darkness. In turn the darkness enveloped me. A warm embrace from an uncomfortable sweater.

“Good to see you Marco.”

“Happy birthday papa.”

toanoradian
May 30, 2011


sebmojo posted:

vvv Noah, no problem with me. Can't noone stop you posting, blood.

A truel? Man, Thunderdome 2012 will end with a bang.

Anyway, my submission, 932 words.

Mr. Lestrade’s Perfect Bland Art

Let me paint a picture of Mayenne Lestrade. He was a genius, capable of creating masterpieces in paintings, music and writing. He was hardworking, not stopping for one second to work on his art. Typewriters, post-it notes and melodicas litter his house, for him to experiment on something new as he wandered the house. Earphones constantly stuck to his head and played his own music at him. He was a recluse, with his ‘editor’ being the only connection to the world. I’m his new ‘editor’, temporarily replacing his old editor who was struck with appendicitis. My main job was to collect all those post-it notes where Mr. Lestrade did his sketches, the typewriter papers where he did his drafts and the recording of his melodica meddling. I put those assortments of miscellaneous creativity into the ‘main table’, where he would combine them into one almost-perfect work.

Mr. Lestrade also didn’t care about his own rewards. All the medals and certificates he’d gained over his long career he hid on the storage, inside poorly arranged cardboard boxes.

Perhaps the weirdest thing about Mr. Lestrade is his love of bland things. His walls were dull white, his furniture was only wooden tables and chairs and there were no television, radios, air conditioner or even coaches. The ‘main table’, itself a simple wooden table with drawing utensils and a computer, was located in a windowless room. This love of bland things extended to food as well. He was content with eating only white rice (while working), and would request no spices to cooked meats, not even salt and pepper.

He threw it all away when it’s time to perfect his work, however. Whenever he was on the final stages of his creation, the ‘main table’ would contain numerous cans, of soft drinks, orange juices and coffee. As he wrote (or painted or recorded) his work, he would voraciously drink and eat. He would also throw super sweet or super sour candies into his mouth, which he would then chew with gusto. As he worked harder, he would drink and eat harder. This was an intense few hours as I ran between the refrigerator and the ‘main table’ to resupply the drinks and candies. After he finished his work, he would jump out from his chair and ran outside of the house, seemingly to catch some fresh air.

All in all, exactly what his old editor told me would happen. However, unlike him, I broke that ritual. I hadn’t restocked enough sweets and drinks. Upon finding nothing more to consume, Mr. Lestrade’s eyes widened. He began to spit and let his tongue out. He then coughed. He looked at the back of his palm and began licking it. He then deleted his work. If it were a painting, he would murder the canvas. If it were music, he would corrupt it with white noise. If it were a piece of writing, he would drown the manuscript in correction fluid. In a final act of befuddling eccentricity, he then smiled at his destroyed artwork and shrugged. “At least the taste’s gone,” he said. He looked at me and removed his earphones. “I’m not going to hate you, but please make sure this doesn’t happen again.”

Few days after that, my temporary stint as Mr. Lestrade’s ‘editor’ ended. Not content with leaving thing as they were, I asked Mr. Lestrade, “Why did you do…what you do?”

Even though he didn’t remove his earphones, he could still hear me. “Because I like money.”

“No, I mean, why did you behave like that on the main table? Drinking all those sweet things?”

“Wait, didn’t Lokos tell you anything?”

“Since I’m hired on an emergency, all I could get was this short message regarding your unusual behaviours.”

“You’ve been working here for three months and you didn’t find it weird enough to ask sooner?” He said as he sketched a wardrobe on one post-it note. “It’s a…weird…condition I have. For me, everything had a taste.”

“Everything?”

“Yes. This is how I can understand you even though there is loud music blaring in my ears. Your sentences had a certain taste that is distinguishable – due to how simple it is – to my music.”

“What do my sentences taste like?” I asked.

“Like a mint-candy coated with spit,” he said. “I’m not offending you. I couldn’t control the relationship between the actual object and the taste. My song taste like slightly moldy bread inside a menthol, for example.”

“Is that why you are satisfied with only white rice? Because you have enough taste?”

He nodded. “It is rather overwhelming. This post-it note by its own contains two tastes: its appearance and colour. Combine that with the taste of holding a pen and looking at it. Add to that the taste of sketching. Further, the taste of looking at the sketch is also different. Thus the simple act of sketching something became a festival of odd sensations.”

“Then why do you drink sweet drinks?”

Mr. Lestrade smiled slightly. “See, when everything came together, all the myriad tastes ceased to be distinct; they became one taste. And that taste is absolute blandness.”

“What?”

“A perfect art for me tastes bland. So bland, in fact, that I couldn’t stand it. Imagine chewing on a crumpling nugget of dust. I need some other taste.”

“So you don’t feel good making your work?”

“Not at all. The process of making it at least feels unique. Once it’s finished, it became harmful to me.”

“So why keep doing it?”

“I told you. For money.”

dromer
Aug 19, 2012

THUNDERDOME LOSER

Nes Gadol Hayah Sham, 1000 words

I always sat in the corner of the room every Hanukkah, watching the children play with whatever cheap dreidel they bought from the market. The children knew the significance of the dreidel. Nes Gadol Hayah Sham, a great miracle happened here. What they never notice is the meaning of the game. Nobody can influence a dreidel once it begins to spin. None except for God. And he has built many lessons into that small toy.

Alan spun the top, and, after clattering on the wood floor, cam to rest on the נ, the nun. Disappointed, he handed the dreidel to the next player.
Life is often about waiting. I had been waiting in a train station from Germany to France. The chill of the winter air made everyone move in a hustle. The waiting rooms were so filled with smoke that some of the inhabitants had to duck out of the room to get a breath of fresh air. I was sitting outside, facing the train tracks, shivering so hard the rusty nuts that secured the bench to the concrete floor hummed from my shivering. Slowly, my train rolled up to the station, and I was the first in the queue. I flashed my ticket and pulled my luggage with me into the car. Behind me was a small woman. She was struggling to place her luggage onto the train, and I offered my assistance to her. She gladly accepted it, and we sat in the same booth. She, like me, was Jewish and looking for a new life, and had barely scrounged up the bucketful of marks it took to secure a train from Germany to France. I showed her the inside of the pillowcase I had brought with me. It was lined with million mark bills. We both laughed, glad to get away from at least some of our troubles.

Elizabeth spun the top and it landed with a clack on the ה, the Hei. She modestly took half the pot, and handed the dreidel to Alan. It is the small things in life that often matter.

The few years that had passed since Rebecca and I rode the train together were filled with many nice small surprises. I found a job quickly, and Rebecca made her wages from doing laundry. We found a nice flat in Paris, and filled it with many things over the years. We were married and she became quick with child. God had provided. It was no life of luxury, but it was an honest life.
Ruth spun the dreidel, and it landed on the ש, the shin. She placed one coin into the pot, unnknowing if she will ever see that coin in her possession again. Sometimes one just has to trust in God, and that He has a plan for us. The Gimel tells us that God gives to those who serve him.

It was in 1939 that we first thought of leaving France. Europe was becoming unsafe, and Rebecca's family sent her many mails regarding the nature of America. Come over, they said, to the land of plenty, where none are hungry and everyone has work. We pulled our life savings together, and after hearing of Germany's success to the East, we decided, in April of 1940, to leave for America. We would have very little money when we got there, and no savings. We would have no job, no contacts, and no knowledge of the land. As the boat slipped away from the dock, I read a letter from my close friend in Germany. He wished us the best luck in America, and he regretted not being there to send us off. It was the last letter I had ever received from him.

Noah spun the top emphatically and it bounced a few times before landing on the ג, the gimel. He greedily took every chocolate coin from the pot.
We had almost made it to America, and were submitting to the customs checks that would let us into the country when a finely dressed man, no older than myself, called to the captain and explained that “the papers weren't in order” and that we might have to turn back for France. We were all worried. We had heard over the radio that the war had begun in earnest in France and that the Nazis had broken through the Marginot line with no effort.

We waited for days on the boat, silently praying for deliverance from the battleground of Europe. There was very little to do while we were waiting on the boat, so the eight or nine Jewish people on the boat spun the little clay dreidel we had found in Rebecca's suitcase, playing with marks and francs and dollars. Over those eight days, I learned the most curious thing about the dreidel: no matter how much one of us lost on one day, we would always get the money back. In the end, we all had the same amount of money as we had when we begun.

Finally, on the eighth day, the customs officer allowed us in. I still remember that some of the other immigrants ran to the officer and hugged him so tightly that the other immigration officers had to pull them off.

My family often wonders how I can't hear anything less than a shout but can hear the sound of a dreidel from a thousand miles away. I only reply that it is the will of God that I have such a blessing. Our lives are all little coin pots in an eternal game of dreidel, being dealt each hand by God. Many times, life seems as though it is nuns and shins, and that you'll never see those coins you sunk into the pot again. But during those times, I always looked at the whole dreidel, at Nes Gadol Hayah Poh, at a great miracle happened here, and I can't help but agree.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.



Benagain, Peel, and Sitting Here have just under 20 minutes to submit. Oh boy, it is exciting. I'm waiting a few minutes and then I'm handing out flash rules.

Peel
Dec 3, 2007



Edge (340)

Edge my foot forward. An edge. Edge it back.

“Keep going, grandad! Unless you want us to push you.”

Find the edge and explore sideways, sideways, there’s another edge. A way forward. How far does it go? Hold my arms out and shuffle feet onto the naked girder, one behind the other. Inch by inch, out into void.

“Man, he’s doing it!”

The world falls away and there is only the beam. Six inches wide, about. My mind screams to remove the blindfold but I can’t. Those three boys are there. Even together they are surely not older than me but that makes them young and strong.

Another step. The city is roaring in the distance. When I could see the other side, it didn’t seem so far. Maybe ten feet? Maybe fifteen? I can't remember but it wasn't so far. Keep calm. But it is so far. My heart thunders. The other side is distant, rushing away at the speed of falling. There is no other side. The beam will end before my feet and I will tumble.

“Remember grandad, way out’s over there. Keep going!”

Wind. Wind grips me and shakes me, freezing and lacerating, and the boys whoop and holler. I flicker in the wind and the beam is light like cloud and I swing but suck the wind in and lean into it and it passes and I am still on the endless beam, waiting for the end.

And then my foot brishes an edge and the world opens out before it and it is vast and sweet and safe. I grip the concrete with my hands and knees and drink the cool air in gulp after gulp. The boys laugh and cheer sick cheers but they do not come for me. As I tear the blindfold from my face I see them leaving and I see the bright sun on the broken concrete and I see just how short it was, just a few feet. A few feet between the edges of the world.

The Saddest Rhino
Apr 29, 2009

I could hear the roots of loneliness creeping through me when the world was hushed at four o'clock in the morning




10 minutes remain! Unfortunately I was just made aware that I have a massive client meeting tomorrow morning (on my leave :mad:) and I can only start reading entries much later.

I'm leaving it to Chairchucker to deal out flash rules if you don't make the deadline.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.



Time is up.

Benagain, Sitting Here, there is perhaps a small chance of redemption, with these extension flash rules!

The next submission must have at least three puns. Good ones. And no footnotes.

The submission after that must have exactly zero puns, and must have footnotes with a word count (separate to that of the main body) with a minimum of 20 words, maximum of 200.

Oh boy. Puns and footnotes are the best. I am looking forward to these submissions ever so much.

EDIT: OK I am going to bed now, and when I wake up there will be either two more stories in this thread, or some people will have brought shame upon their families. Either way.

Martello
Apr 29, 2012

by XyloJW


twinkle cave posted:

for that i challenge you to a flash brawl. 4 stories in 4 days. 700-1000 words each. you may choose the start date of your demise, or you can use Ph.D Bohner's random algorithm. any story that reeks of "i just slapped it down like a bitch whore journal entry" is automatic disqualification. in otherwords BME and reasonable quality. you may choose the judge, or just take your shame now and back away from this challenge only fit for those who had parents with kids that lived.

bring it, son.

Let's start on the 2nd. I'll be getting home from vacation and I can write stories at work on the 3rd and 4th. sebmojo is obviously the ideal judge.

Benagain
Oct 10, 2007

I WILL DERAIL ANY THREAD TO DEFEND PEOPLE WHO CHEAT ON THEIR SPOUSES BECAUSE I THINK THEY CAN DO NO WRONG. DO NOT LISTEN TO ME. I AM FUCKING STUPID.


Fun Shoe

Carnival Melange
644 words

When I ran my hands through his beard I heard rain, and I loved him for it. I loved him for many things but that was the touchstone I kept coming back to. My own personal rainmaker, I'd call him, and he'd laugh and I'd see stars.

We'd met at the carnival. I'd been a tattooed, bearded lady until the barker found a non-tattooed bearded lady who could bite the tops off of bottles. So I shaved my face every morning, in order to heighten the appeal of the tattoos. The razor sliding over my face sounded like a very long, drawn out violin string and I'd hum along to it. Got to the point that my roommate would hum along too without even realizing she was doing it, accompanying something she couldn't hear.

He was a lion tamer, which he always joked was basically just letting the lion do what it felt like and taking credit for it afterward. He had a few books on philosophy which he would read out loud to the lion as it sat apathetically in the cage, trying to explain the structure of the universe and the laws of ethics to it. He always said that he was testing it to see if it could understand its situation.

He always claimed to like me better with a bit of stubble on my face, and whenever I'd call him a liar he'd get very serious and make his voice profound and declaim that beards were the outward signs of God's blessing upon a person and that to not display them was to spurn God, and I'd laugh and kiss him to shut him up and his body moving against mine sounded like trumpets in the distance.

He'd get lost in my tattoos, tracing them with his finger, which sounded a little like jazz if he did it fast enough. The USS Friend on my shoulder, the camel on my toe. I'd gotten the entire script of Leviticus 19:28 done on my leg, my first tattoo, a stupid act of rebellion at the time but it led me to him and so how could it be anything but precious now?

I don't know what he saw in the cage that day. We weren't even doing a show, just on the road from one town to the next and he was sitting in the back with the lion, reading to it as usual, and I was leaning against him watching the world pass by out the back. Occasionally he'd run his fingers through my hair, which I'd told him sounded like bells once, and he'd always make a point to try and do it in time to make a sort of song for me.

Then he stopped, and I looked up and he was staring into the cage, staring at the lion and the lion was staring right back at him and I swear to you that they were talking somehow, reaching out across species and language and time to understand each other. He looked like he'd found God in that moment, and the lion looked as if it was God.

I was frozen as he closed the book and moved towards the cage, frozen as he took out the key, frozen as he unlocked the door and threw it wide. They stared at each other some more, and then the lion made one giant swipe of its claw and bounded out the open back of the truck and was gone. It never even looked at me.

I unfroze, went to him, lying there on the floor. His chest torn, his face bloody, he clutched at the book he was reading with one hand and grabbed my arm with the other, a sad little funeral note in the distance. “Live fast, die Jung,” he gasped out, and breathed his last.

Sitting Here
Dec 31, 2007


BLO OD E M PR E SS

of

THUDNER-DOME






gently caress everything. I had just finished, refreshed the thread to make sure Benagin hadn't posted and of course there you are with your loving little cartoony blue hair thing avatar, you gently caress.

No hard feelings though.

Also sorry Charichucker, no footnotes for you. There's just no way.

Also also I've been reading way too many demisexual/transfat/transethnic/otherkin blogs and tumblrs. The abyss finally stared back at me.

Puntitled
477 words

It was the night after Christmas, and Whitney and Angie were sitting in the only diner in town open late on a Sunday.

"I can't believe you don't do Kwanzaa," Whitney said, forgetting the bit of cherry pie halfway to her mouth. "If people like me had a holiday, I'd quit Christmas."

Angie opened her mouth to say something, then closed it, then opened it again just a bit to let out a neutral "Oh?"

"Not everyone's differences are on the outside. Some people are minorities on the inside." Whitney put a finger to her temple.

"You're gonna tell me you're some kind of rear end-backward black lady in a snowflake costume?"

Whitney ignored the sarcasm, giving Angie a beatific smile. "I never told you because I don't like to make a big deal of it, but I have sinusthesia."

Angie stared blankly across the table. "I--I don't...Sinus problems aren’t really the same thing..."

"No, no, no!" Whitney's eyes were wide. "Sinusthesia. Sinusthesia. It's a neurological condition where I see sounds and smell colors and taste feelings. It's really distracting, you know?"

Silence stretched between the two friends.

"You mean synesthesia?" Angie asked at length. "What, you spend too much time hanging out with Timothy Leary and his friend Lucy?"

Whitney crossed her arms and scowled. "I don't have any alter egos. Synesthesia is not the same as dissociative identity disorder. I know that you know better than that. Anyway, I'm just saying that it would be nice if sinusthetes had a day to come together to celebrate our uniqueness and give each other strength for when things get hard."

"Uh huh. And did your therapist diagnose you with this or something?" Angie asked, then closed her mouth again before anything else could escape.

At that, Whitney scowled, incredulous. "You didn't need a doctor to diagnose you as African-American. I'm so tired of society only seeing what's on the outside." She rested her chin on her hands and pouted, staring out the window at the street right out of a Thomas Kinkade painting. "I just thought you'd want to observe the day of Umoja together since you don't have other people to celebrate with, and I don't have a holiday at all."

"White--I mean Whitney, Kwanzaa isn't about feeling unique or whatever. It's about having a connection to a culture and history that we wouldn't otherwise get to experience because we’re in WASP land."

"What do wasps have to do with African heritage?" Whitney perked up, looking almost interested. Angie rubbed the bridge of her nose.

"It means--you know what, gently caress it. Kwanzaa's cancelled. I declare tonight Synexmas. How do we celebrate?"

Whitney sat up straight. "Well first thing," she said, her voice sweet as the cherries on her pie as she pulled out her smartphone. "We'll have to invite friends. You'll love my friend Yuki, he's transethnic!"

Sitting Here
Dec 31, 2007


BLO OD E M PR E SS

of

THUDNER-DOME






Seriously Don't click on this thread, I lost almost a whole workday :catstare:ing at my computer

Erik Shawn-Bohner
Mar 21, 2010

by XyloJW


then don't post it if we shouldn't look at it

good job dumbass

Martello
Apr 29, 2012

by XyloJW


Erik Shawn-Bohner posted:

then don't post it if we shouldn't look at it

good job dumbass

wow erik thats rude

no need for that kind of talk this isn't fyad jeez


twinkle btw another benefit of e-cigs is that you can smoke them inside a public place, at least in NY

twinkle cave
Dec 20, 2012


Week XXI crit

Fell Fire posted:

671 words

Wisdom of the Greeks

I wake to the smell of dawn: cypress and straw.

Meager light filters through the narrow window above my head. It hits me, cold and damp, washing over me. I turn, trying to see beyond the bars: my chains hold me. It is useless, anyway. (Good setup)

The guard comes up, his boots heavy with thunder. He drops a wooden bowl in front of me, sounding with a heavy green thud. More steps, a gentle caress as I hear the key enter the lock, then a sharp pain as fall to the stone floor (way to work in loss of virginity). I grope for it hesitatingly, finding the rough trencher after several long moments. The porridge is thick and rich as I scoop it into my mouth, not caring as its the heat burns my fingers.

Full, I turn over onto my back, resting my hands on my stomach. Visions dance(I get such phrasings are acceptable in a bards tale, but still played out) above me, teasing with my memories, taunting. Rooms with flowing fountains, gardens with dancing girls. My thoughts drift away from the now.

Soft steps, slippered, blue and gold on smooth stone. A few words are spoken to the guards, short and clear. Heavy(overuse of the word) steps approach me again.

A blue click informs me that my shackles are undone. The leathery skin of the guards abrades against mine as they drag me out of my cell. It feels comforting, like a wife's touch. They ease me into a chair and I run my hands along the seat, grasping the few adornments along the front edge. Red. I have sat in a chair like this before, cushioned and aired. It was another life.

A softness envelopes my face, smelling of cinnamon. It reaches down, grabbing my arms and pulling them up to its face. I can feel the aquiline nose, I can see those dark eyes staring down at me, piercing. His fingers dance(please stop the dancing... gently caress that word. it should almost never be used unless someone is actually doing a waltz) across my face, rubbing gently across ancient scars, brushing some drabs of oatmeal out of the stubble, pausing over the empty sockets, circling them. Happy shouts, a perfumed room, boys at play.

“Brother.” My voice comes out in a rasp, sending a jolt of yellow pain down my spine.

“Peace be with you, my old friend. The guards, they have been kind, yes?” His touch pulls away, the echoes of it leave me begging. The taste of dark wine fills my mouth.

“More than.”

“Good. Good.” A curt sigh. “I did not want it to come to this, but alas, here we sit.”

A clap, more footsteps. I am blinded for a moment, pain shining in my ruined vision. A clatter rises from the table, and the sounds of sloppy eating. Raising my hand, I rub my temples. The whiteness subsides. I can smell the armor behind me, gold ringed mail.

“Solomon, what possessed you so? I remember playing together as children . . . why struggle against fate?”

For a long, blessed, moment, words do not come. The silence rings in the room. My brother continues speaking, his voice low and sorrowful.

“So many years together, we both knew what was to come. And yet, still you refuse me.” Anger over some trifle. A shove, blood on red sandstone.
Silence.

“I am Sultan! God's chosen on Earth! Who are you to defy me!”

I answer, lifting a hand to my ruined face.

“I have been told that the Greeks used to do this to their enemies, robbing them of the world. What do your eyes show you, that you can speak with men like that? What is it you see? What does it say about our future? Brother.”

The last word comes out more saliva than noise. I begin to laugh. It is a soft thing. Our mother used to tell me that I had the laughter of a child.

“I am told the world seems brightest just before death. Please, tell me, what does a blind man see before he enters Paradise?”

The silk garrotte slips around my neck; it smells of lilacs and sounds of blood.


Good use of prompt. With the exception of a little overuse of adverbs, this story is well done. Always looking for original language without slipping into idiocy is a challenge. A good job was done here. There was much tactile to draw us in. The ending is clear. We were shown not told. I got the entire picture through their exchanges and physical circumstance. Status: Still standing proudly in the dome, ready for anything.

Though this story didn't use all of its weapons, leaving 300+ words on the table, this is an example where more may have been less... unlike many of the other sad fucks in the dome this week.

sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010


Legit Cyberpunk







Martello posted:

bring it, son.

Let's start on the 2nd. I'll be getting home from vacation and I can write stories at work on the 3rd and 4th. sebmojo is obviously the ideal judge.

:siren:THUNDERBRAWL - TWO GOONS ENTER, ONE GOON LEAVES:siren:

Martello and twinkle cave in a mano e mano struggle to the PAIN. The loser of the Thunderbrawl will get a custom title from me displaying their shame. They will also be obliged to refer to the victor as THE HUMONGOUS.

Noah and anyone else can enter, and will be judged, but only Martello and twinkle cave face the ultimate penalty.

Three stories because gently caress ties.

Each due at 2400 hours EST, on the 2nd, 3rd and 4th of January 2013.

Word limit: 1000 words or under.

First prompt: DUEL IN THE SUN



Constraint: No male characters may speak.

The second and third prompts will be announced when the previous story is due.

twinkle cave
Dec 20, 2012


TWINKLE CAVE REVIEW

Martello posted:

chips beer babies shirts blood

1000 words


"The light's green," Linnea said. It was one of those weird lights that wasn't bright, and I couldn't tell which one was on. The sunlight reflecting off the day-old snow didn't help. I grunted and stepped on the gas. (good opening)

She squeezed my thigh. "Sorry, honey, I know you don't like me to tell you."(this guy might be a bit of a dick, or she's a little bit of a nag. it puts my mind in limbo. you quickly establish a problem for me to think about)

I didn't say anything, and her hand moved to my crotch. I smiled. "It just makes me feel stupid, babe." I hardened against her hand. "And you certainly know how to cheer me up."

"Uh-huh," she giggled. "We got about forty-five minutes to Jonas', right?" (not sure about the giggle, but let it stand)

"Yup." I turned onto the I-81 North on-ramp.

"More than enough time." Linnea unbuckled and leaned across, unzipped my fly. (road-head is a little played out. plus by the end i'm thinking "you want to have a baby, your loving doing it wrong, you should have pulled over and banged her in one of those filthy gas station bathrooms where the door faces the outside and anything goes." none-the-less, this "gritty" detail puts us in action, tells us what kind of story this is going to be.. no mush mouth poo poo)

#

The poker game was at Jonas' place in South Onondaga. Kevin and Shane were sitting around his dining room table with beers. A rangy(perfect word) guy I didn't know was standing in the kitchen talking to Jonas' wife Carolyn.

"Max, this is Tommy Halligan," Jonas said.

"Good to meet you," Tommy said. His handshake was firm, but his hands soft.

"You too."

"Tommy and I went to Binghamton together," Jonas said. "He's up visiting from Jersey."

"Cool," I said. "We ready to start playing?"

"Yup," Jonas said. "What kind of beer you want? I got Porkslap, a couple Raison d'Etres, and one of my own red ales left." (drop the choice, just offer him a "poo poo beer" or a red ale he made.. the rest sounds a little gay and gets us thinking about custom beers instead of the story. or if you want these guys to be cultural selective badasses put a few other details in the story that indicates that)

"Gimme the red.” I patted Linnea's big rear end (thank god for big asses) as she started talking to Carolyn, leaving us boys to our cards.
(another solid scene)

#

Four hands in, and I was losing badly. Jonas was dealing, I was big blind followed by Kevin, Tommy, and Shane. Shane, as usual, was winning. It was only a fifty-dollar buy-in, but I'd been playing and losing too much lately. Linnea always came to Jonas' games, but she didn't know about the others I played in basements back in Marathon. I needed to win this one, or get another floor job soon.

"Did I tell you that Mary's pregnant?" Tommy was asking Jonas.

"No, you didn't. Congratulations, dude!" Jonas toasted Tommy's glass of rum and Coke.

"Thanks," Tommy said.

"Will this be your first?" Kevin asked.

"Yup." Tommy's was slurring already. "Didn't plan it. Not sure I'm looking forward to it all that much either." (this is a really cold loving thing to say, especially with strangers in the room. it sets him up pretty good and the crux of MC's added hate. what about trying "Not looking forward to it either."... lose the hedging words)

Jonas said some reassuring things that I ignored, thinking about Linnea's apparent infertility. We'd been trying for close to a year, and still nothing. I tried to focus on the game, squinting at the two eights and the king of clubs on the table. I had pocket jacks, spades and diamonds. Shane was the last to bet. He looked at me, his eyebrows low.

"Call," he said, tossing two blacks into the pot.

"Pot's right," Jonas said. He burned a card and flipped the turn. The jack of hearts. I covered my excitement with a long swig of beer. (nice)

Shane was looking at me, his blue eyes burning into me. I didn't want to spook him, so I pushed in three black chips. He raised his eyebrows.

"I fold," Kevin said. "Too rich for my blood." (overused phrase... consider giving kevin more overused sayings just to show he's that kind of dimwit)

"Pussy," Tommy slurred. "Call your thirty and raise you thirty more." He pushed a stack of six chips into the pot, knocking them over.

"Call," Shane said. He slid two stacks of three into the middle.

"Fold," Jonas said. "Max?"

"Call.” I only had one black ten-chip left, a green twenty, and seven white fives. I made a stack of four whites and a black and shoved them in.

"Now we're getting somewhere!" Tommy slapped the table with a big hand. Shane glared at him, but said nothing.

"Call or bet, rear end in a top hat?" Jonas asked.

"Call, motherfucker. Let's see that river!" Tommy downed his glass and poured another from the bottles of Bacardi and Coke next to his chips.

"I call too," Shane said. Jonas burned one, flipped the river. The king of diamonds.

"Christ on a cracker," Tommy said. "poo poo just got real, huh?" (like this "poo poo just got..." line could go in Kevin's mouth.. whereas "christ on a cracker" stays with tommy who's more original in his banter)

"Shut up," Jonas said. "Max?"

I stared at the cards. Did someone else have a king? gently caress it, I decided. I was so short I'd be out the next round anyway.

"gently caress it. All in." I pushed my pile across.

"Fold, bitch, I loving fold!" Tommy tossed his cards at Jonas. "Fuckin' king, huh?"

"I'll see you.” Shane’s face was expressionless.

"Show 'em," Jonas said.

I flipped my jacks and grinned at Shane. "Beat that, big guy."

Shane smiled, turned his cards. Two kings, hearts and spades.

I leaned back, groaning. "God loving drat it." I looked into the kitchen. "Linnea, let's get going. I'm out."
(Alright, that whole card exchange was excellent. It is the best part of the story. The way the game is described, the dialogue, and the reactions. Great pacing)

"Okay, honey.”

"You don't wanna buy back in, huh human being?" Tommy’s wide face was twisted into an aggressive leer.

"No." I stood up and put my jacket on. "Good game, guys. Good luck to the rest of you."

They all expressed sympathy and said good-bye, except Tommy who kept that stupid look on his face. "human being," he said again. (moment discussed in overview below)

I stopped and turned around. Linnea's grip tightened on my arm. "Either shut the gently caress up or follow me get outside," I said.

"C'mon, Max, don't be like that," Kevin said. I turned to leave and heard Tommy's chair scrape as he got up. Linnea and I walked outside, and Tommy was right behind me. He stepped down to the lawn and peeled his sweater off.

"Let's do this, human being," he said. He had plenty of muscle, but with those soft hands I figured he wore gloves in the gym(this confused me. at first i thought you meant boxing gloves, but i didn't know everyone at the table was just a boxer type... so then i thought, "weight lifting gloves" which is a known pansy protocol, that is not all guys that wear those are pansys but many pansys do. so anyway, clarify somehow ). I shrugged my jacket off and put my hands up.

#

It was over in a couple minutes. Tommy lay bleeding in the snow, his bare skin already bright red to the cold. The other guys were watching from the porch. Linnea had tears in her eyes but knew not to say anything. I climbed into the truck without another word. (Tears in her eyes and sploosh in her pants. why the gently caress is she crying, he wins, and most gals who roll with a dude like this get their pussys all tuned up from a little bloodletting. makes her too weak... frail little bitch, and gives him more and more of the air of wife abuser... as in the beginning part with the stop light. maybe that's what he is, but i thought a story about cards and a fight that happens because of background stresses over baby absence was more interesting than stoic wife abuser strikes again)

"Sorry babe," I said to Linnea as we rolled out of the driveway.

She didn't say anything (she should have an action her. If she doesn't say anything, then why the gently caress do i care. just scratch it or have her do something, like lean her face against the window or something at least, the opposite of leaning her face into his lap). I drove into the cold night, thinking about the baby I wished we had.


Good title, though i don't know why "shirt" was thrown in. You've cleanly captured the fact that rear end kicking and loving thus babies go together which is a fundamental truth of human existence.

A qualm though: The moment the dude calls him a human being the second time, that's when i personally shove a foot strait in the dudes face while he's still sitting down and re-arrange the entire house with his body. That being said, ok, Max is a calculating kind of brutal, takes his time, enjoys the circumstance. Maybe that works. But, the crux of the issue here, is that the baby isn't needed. If someone calls one a human being in this dick dropping manner they got an rear end beating coming anyway, so it confuses the motivations a bit. Either he beats his rear end for one or the other. If Max where the aggressor, and "rangy guy" responds with "human being", then that sets him up to get his rear end beat with overt good reason all around, then that i get (and the added complexity of who really started the goddamn fight). Plus, where exactly is this "human being" coming from. Other than tension of the card game, the motivation for "human being" seems slim. He just decides, "human being". The word "human being" does play into the potential lack of manhood displayed from his non-baby making status, which as a reader with a possibly unreliable narrator, could mean that it's actually he that is infertile. For the sake of brevity, I cut short this dissertation of "human being" and violence and babies, but several pages could easily be written.

This story has the makings of a true winner. The card scene is exceedingly sharp and the tone of the characters is convincing. Bonus points for using all your words.

Status: Combatant charges forward to spread his seed.

twinkle cave
Dec 20, 2012


SurreptitiousMuffin posted:

Kk well in my fanfiction Captain Haddock gets drunk and verbally abuses the Thompsons. If you take issue with that, I would direct you to the texts below. What is the one rule of the 'dome?

You keep what you kill.

loving bring it, loserwinner.

Little King (I can't believe it's not Rimbaud)

Could I take the air around you and shape it as clay, I would make a pug. A little, droopy, smelly thing with a face too frail to hold all its self-importance. I would roll that pug in poo poo and paste a smile on its face and a big friendly tongue that says “nobody home” without uttering a sound. You're lucky that I cannot make a shape of a smell, of an essence as it were. That little clay poo poo-smell puggy canisculi would be a vessel of loathing- not hate (which is opposed to love and just as dangerous) but loathing I feel for the taste of worms or the touch of a fart in the elevator. Your soul is a fart in an elevator and I'm an industrial fan. Blow away, fart-soul. Blow away with your conviction. If you had strength in your terrible thoughts, I'd at least respect that but they are tangible discurses and bloody rotten fallow fall. In a hole in the woods there is a white creature covered in hair (apres moi le deluge, rear end in a top hat) and I guess it runs the family.

Do you know the smell of gypsies with ribbons? It is a sweet smell tinged with sadness and a thing I truly hate- because hate is the opposite of love and just as seductive. I hate it because it stirs my soul too much as to have me weep. It is such a boundless love that I cannot bear myself to face it, so I look away. That is what I call hate, you clay-dog-fart-in-an-elevator no good motherfucker. That is what I see what I say, when I drop words like a lesser man spitting bullets. You are that lesser man, who does not deserve my hatred because the only emotion you stir in me is a limp dick and a moistness upon the flat walls of my soul. You are moist made flesh, dog fart. You are to blame for all the minor, sweating evil of the world.

Take your clipboard and stick it up your rear end.

My favorite part is the fart-soul. As a piece with creative language, provocative ideas, and originality it exceeds with great merit. It also isn't a story (BME), uses a paltry 345 words which you were to ashamed to mention, and ends on a faint frail whimper of "i don't know what the gently caress to do with this". As a love letter to oddity, I champion it, but in the dome it must be vanquished as the imaginative journal entry it is.

Statues: Marooned on a drunken boat to slowly die with the sea pouring beautiful words into the ears of your last moments

twinkle cave
Dec 20, 2012


TWINKLE CAVE CRIT
-lost formatting of Fanky's italics cause doing my crits in word and pasting them over cause gently caress doing this poo poo inside SA box.

Fanky Malloons posted:

Autopilot 962 words

Sandra stands, naked and dripping, in front of the fan in her funhouse bathroom (Good first sentence). The full-length mirror in front of her reflects the mirrors on the other walls, as multiple Sandras reach out to switch on multiple fans (also like this... duchamp-esque). Phlanges she thinks as she looks at her outstretched index finger. Metacarpals, carpals, her eyes travel up her arm as she goes through the connections, radiusandulna, humerus. She shifts her gaze to one of the mirror-Sandras as she continues up towards her head, trying to re-learn the map of her body. Her pointed finger, momentarily forgotten, drifts off course as it hangs in space. Shoulder girdle - clavicleandscapula - cervical vertebrae, skull. (This naming of body parts succeeds as a story telling device)

Sandra has learned a lot about anatomy since she woke up in the hospital a year ago (a mouthful. Consider "One can learn a lot of anatomy in a year. A year since she woke up. A year since she left the hospital." Not saying my suggestion is good, but something to break up that sentence... its force fed. maybe just drop "in the hospital"). About rare and unusual reactions to common antibiotics. About polyneuritis. About proprioception and the primary somatosensory cortext in her postcentral gyrus. None of it really helps to illuminate how the map her mind held of her body got erased, nor how to get it back. Sandra's body has become a coded letter written invisible ink that can't be revealed, no matter how many words her neurologist writes about her in his medical journal articles. (slightly confusing, but i'm getting that she has to memorize how to use her body instead of being able to do it automatically... like an aspergers of human motion)

Sandra feels a sudden sensation of pressure that she can't locate, and looks back at the fan, confused. She has lost her hand. She stares hard at the fan, willing herself to feel the pressure, to pinpoint it - to understand that part of her body is touching another part of itself (ah, so she's lost her sense of touch... that's pretty cool). Finally, Sandra consults the mirror. I thought so. Her wayward hand has drifted downward, hitting her in the thigh. Femur she thinks, looking down. My hand is touching my leg. Hand. Leg. Hand. Leg. She looks away again, Hand-leg-hand-leg-hand- and both her hand and her leg immediately disappear.

Irritated, Sandra gets back to the business of switching on the fan. She tries to look back down at her hand without moving her head, but she can't tell if her head is moving without checking the mirror. Slowly, she shifts her gaze downwards until her fingers come into view. Her eyes travel up her wrist to her arm, which she raises to eye level, making sure her index finger is extended again. Trying to keep her hand in view, Sandra looks past it to the button on the fan, and past that to the Sandra in the mirror. Okay. Press the button.
(The way you handle the complexity of describing all this is impressive.)

She reaches toward the fan with a strange, exaggerated grace. Like a marionette imitating human movement, she uses the weight of her entire arm behind her pointed finger to depress the button - a motion that took weeks of practice in the rehab ward. The fan's current lifts her hair, and Sandra carefully steps backwards, checking - always checking - her movement in the mirrors. She looks down at her body and watches her skin prickle with goosebumps, the beads of water from the shower shivering in sympathy. The chill of the cold air hitting the water as it rushes across her skin almost makes her feel like her body is her own again, like it's real. Like it's alive.

There is a soft tap on the bathroom door. "Sandy?" Her husband's voice is pregnant(yes, it is a lit word i've seen often in writing of notable authors, and it means what it means, but doesn't mean i have to like it) with concern, "Are you alright in there?" (have him ask a better question. this feels throw-away.)

"I'm fine." Sandra responds, hating the flat monotone that comes out of her mouth. Chris is silent on the other side of the door, and Sandra wonders if she spoke too quietly - controlling her voice is one of many things on a long list that she has to constantly, consciously think about.

"Okay," says Chris, "I'll leave you to it, then." He sounds relieved, and for a moment Sandra hates him for it, jealousy twisting in her gut? chest? heart. She turns mechanically away from the fan and walks to the sink, glancing down at her feet to make sure each step lands in the right place. (more good descriptions... though "hates him for it" feels a little easy)

In front of this mirror, Sandra steels herself for her next action. She holds on to the lip of the sink like a ballet dancer at the barre, feeling the smooth porcelain under my hands. My hands are holding on to the sink. (echoing a ballet dancer is a strong move, who also most be hyper aware of their body) She watches her fingers tighten their grip until the knuckles are white. Hold on to the sink, she tells herself with your hands. Hands. Sink. Keep hold of the sink.

She draws in a deep breath and braces her core, like the physcial therapist taught her. It's almost second nature now - if her eyes are open, she can stay upright with hardly any thought at all.

Staring into the mirror, focusing on the sensation of holding the sink Hands sink hands sink hands Sandra closes her eyes, but opens them again almost immediately. Closing her eyes is a special kind of horror. Her entire body disappears and Sandra is cast adrift with no anchor, her mind totally severed from her body, which runs aground like an abandoned ship. (Good)

Sandra checks her hands on the sink, takes another deep breath and tries again. She closes her eyes
handssinkhands
and starts to count to ten.
One
(handssinkhandssink)
Two
(handssinkha-ouch!)

Her eyes fly open at the jolt of pain which the mirrors confirm is from her knee hitting the tile as she sank towards the floor (something isn't quite right with this sentence). Sandra is furious Two seconds?! until she realizes that she can still feel something cool, smooth, and hard. She whips her head up and sees that her hands are still holding on to the sink. Yes! She triumphs at this small victory over her prodigal(wasteful? a stretch and distracting. at least you didn't confuse it with prodigy as is common) body as she manipulates herself back to standing. In the mirror, Sandra's face is impassive, like always, in spite of her elation. Still holding on to the sink, Sandra decides to practice smiling. (drat nice ending)



Great story. The fact that you took it on yourself to write such a compact moment with nothing to grip onto other than the motions and feelings of being in the bathroom is commendable. You use rich language to get this done. This is a non-trival thing to pull off. Also that you straight up used a "get inside of the head of an Oliver Sacks type" gave you the strongest placement for conforming to the prompt. I didn't think anyone would do it.


You should exploit the duchampiness of the first paragraph to give the story even more richness and add another "dimension". The feelings toward the husband(a guess) are not worth a bent penny, so do something more with that, or change it someone else without getting too far out of line from the solid that is here. Using a richer integration between her condition and his exchange seems appropriate. You do point out that she can't control her volume but another nudge there would be better.

Consider reading dance sections from "The Body Artist" by DeLillo for more primer on showing a body in motion if you'd like to see how far you can push this story.

Status: Lives with masterful control on the battlefield.

SurreptitiousMuffin
Mar 21, 2010


twinkle cave posted:

It also isn't a story (BME),
all excellent points except this- I'm just following orders here: Chairchucker asked me to write a diss track. That's how I interpreted my bonus prompt, anyway. Also I don't know what Biomedical Engineering has to do with this.

Erik Shawn-Bohner
Mar 21, 2010

by XyloJW


Ya'll are a bunch of goofy fuckers. I'm glad we have this thread.

twinkle cave
Dec 20, 2012


Noah posted:

Silence is Golden Spoon

Words: 660

Diet Coke? Why does he taste like Diet Coke?

“…You were brought in with extreme dehydration, vomiting, and…”

That’s weird. Diet? What does that mean? Is it the chemicals?

“Hey, hey you,” the doctor said, snapping his fingers at Kristin.

Kristin shook her head and returned her eyes to the doctor’s browns.

“I’m sorry, what?” She asked.

“Did someone put something in your drink?”

“No, I don’t think so. No, I just, got sick.”

“You just got sick?” (good dialogue.. i can hear this)

There it was again, that aftertaste. Sort of sweet, but empty. Refreshing at first, a little oily after. But, why?

“I said, are you doing any drugs?”

“What? No!” Kristin said. The doctor sighed and leaned onto his knees. “I told you, sometimes I get these tastes that make me really sick. This guy, he was saying something to me, and all I could taste was this, ugh.” (The fact she graps this so quickly, that she connects the dots between sound and the taste, is a little jarring. But as flash, I wonder if there's any other way.)

“You could taste what he was saying?” (again feels set up)

“I told you, yes. I can taste what people are saying to me. Its in their voice, like their tone, I can taste it. I know what they want to do to me.”

The doctor put the cap back onto his pen. “You don’t have to tell me, I’m just someone trying to make sure you don’t die,” he said. (hahaha... you wry doc fucker you)

Chemicals? Made in a lab? Substitute? A fake Coke—

“Hey you think I’m lying to you!”

“I have other patients to attend to, you can check yourself out.”

“I’m not lying, you, you, you guy! Aagh,” Kristin said shaking her sheet at the doctor as he left her ER space. (written for TV?)

Heel after heel (what?), Kristin looked down when she walked the street. Jaw ache from chewing gum meant it was time to switch to Altoids. The distinct doodle (again, what? is a doodle a sound or a drawing. is there some mystery about iPods i'm not aware of where they doodle to you. just you jingle or ring or alarm if that's what it is, or is doodle synonymous in some backass place) from her iPod said get home soon.

She pulled her cap further over her ears as a Chopin etude set the background for her walk home from the emergency room (good walking music, but only a certain kind of person listens to Chopin at just any old time and this is hopefully accounted for in the rest of the story). Avoid eye contact, blow bubbles, smack gum, get inside. Hum if necessary.

The door slammed behind Kristin and she pulled the over-ear headphones off. Sore, she had been wearing them too long. (good detail) Stopping by the trash can, she opened her mouth and a large wad of gum tumbled out slowly. It joined several others in the bottom of the waste bin. (also good detail. i'm interested in her private habits which she uses to overpower her synesthesia. that's the kind of thing a good story is made of.)

“Hey!” Fred her roommate called out to her from down the hall.

Doritos tingled her tongue. Cheese and saltiness fought its way through the wintergreen gum taste and she smiled. She pulled her ears, stretching them out. Letting her jaw hang loose, she shook it, trying to get it to feel like it was back in the right place. (this is funny)

She waved to Fred as she went by and closed the room to her door. The utter laziness and lack of sexuality refreshed her. Smoke pot, eat some chips, that was all Fred wanted. From the first time she ever heard his voice, she knew she would take him on as a roommate. Nacho cheese, a girl’s best friend. (good insights and description of the comforts of a sexless friendship between opposite sexes)

Closed captions flashed periodically across her television. Kristin watched the television in silence as she flipped through the channels. (good. i wouldn't have thought of that. the reader is pleased for the aha moment) Bonks come from the computer behind her. She had left it on all night. Dozens of messages left unanswered from online friends. (good because a girl who listens to chopin while walking definitely keeps a litany of online friends)

As she sat down to type out messages, her phone buzz startled her. She peered over at the phone as it shook on her table, and she withdrew. “Dad.” Her stomach dropped out from under her. She pulled her knees to her chest and she stared at the phone until it stopped ringing. Stillness. Then another spasm of buzzes from the voicemail alert. (seems like she could assign "dad" a ringtone that somehow has a familiar taste that goes with him... grilled burgers or something)

Tears began to streak down Kristin’s face. She reached towards the phone, and another buzz made her jump. Text message.

“Hi honey, did the hospital release you? Are you okay? I’m sorry I couldn’t go with you, I had to get back to work. I’ve never seen so much vomit, lol. Call me when you can, ilu.”


Light, witty, humorous. A few good insights. Moment in the life of etc. I wasn't as rapt by this as the similar story by Franky, but I didn't find much fault with it. It just wasn't amazing or anything. There's probably ways to make this either more humorous or more plotty or both. Needs a few more ingredients. Commendable effort but...

Status: Death by incomplete whimsy.

twinkle cave
Dec 20, 2012


SurreptitiousMuffin posted:

all excellent points except this- I'm just following orders here: Chairchucker asked me to write a diss track. That's how I interpreted my bonus prompt, anyway. Also I don't know what Biomedical Engineering has to do with this.

hahaha... yes, BME = beginning, middle, end. not always necessary once you're a master, but for us lowlings i believe it is the most advisable path. otherwise your just loving about and calling it a story 99 times out of 10.

I don't always get the flash rules in mind when i read these, cause tracking down all the flash rules is a bitch. when people post them at the head of their story, that helps (not sure if you did, maybe i just missed it).

Noah
May 31, 2011

Come at me baby bitch


I was hoping that it apparent that her dad was the one who made her so sick. I had some extra room for words, I probably should have used a little more buffer.

Sitting Here
Dec 31, 2007


BLO OD E M PR E SS

of

THUDNER-DOME






Martello posted:

wow erik thats rude

no need for that kind of talk this isn't fyad jeez


Thanks big guy, I thought my lunch money was history

twinkle cave
Dec 20, 2012


TWINKLE CAVE CRIT

Beezle Bug posted:

Breeze

949 words

Breeze

949 words

The ocean wind clung to their skin in a clammy embrace that prickled gooseflesh on their arms. Maja reached into her purse and removed a blindfold.

"What's this then?" Kyle said. He took it from her and hung it by the straps from his index fingers. The black silk shimmered in the early morning sunlight.

"I wanted you to see what it's like for me."

"How is this going to accomplish that?"

"Just put it on, please," she said. Her voice was weary. He rolled his eyes and put on the blindfold.

"Now what?"

"Just listen. Feel. The breeze over your skin, the tang of the sea on your tongue, that zesty smell as you breathe in? They're all the same thing, right? But they're not. That's what it's like." (might be a little over the top with zest and tang... makes her sound like a con-artist or ad-exec)

"I'm not really sure that it's working," he said. He picked at the straps behind his ears.

"That's because you're not trying, Kyle. You have to relax and open up (buttsex), it's not going to be perfect but it's the best I can do," she said. He threw his hands in the air.

"Fine, fine! Just give me a second, alright?" he said. Kyle took a deep breath and was silent for a few moments, still as he took it all in. He breathed out and shrugged. "Yeah, sure, I guess."

"You guess? " (that jerk isn't trying very hard, seems like a wimp)

"Yeah, well, I mean it's not exactly a life-changing experience. It's not like I've never been to the beach before."

"What happened?" Maja whispered, her voice battered by the raucous cries of gulls and the crashing waves.

"Excuse me?"

"What happened? You used to be so into this. You always asked about it, you always wanted to know what it was like, what a song looked like, the sound of a scent, and I'm trying to show you. Why are you acting like a kid?" (glad she stands up for herself)

"Maybe I'd be more into it if I knew I wouldn't have to fight with you about it. Yeah, it's kinda cool, I get the point, what more do you want from me?" he said. She looked at the ground and picked at the hem of her shirt. (no i agree with him a bit, yeah, stop trying to be so loving special forever Maja. I like the way your pulling me back and forth on my opinion)

"Maybe some enthusiasm?" Maja said. Kyle frowned at her. "Act like you still give half a poo poo about me?" (needy ho)

"Of course I give a poo poo, Maja, it's just hard to act like I do when every little thing is a new contest where I have to prove something to you and I never have any idea what it is."

They stood in silence. She rubbed her temples, her eyes squeezed shut. He sighed again and she scowled at him. An eternity seemed to pass between them. (holy poo poo on gods green motherfucking earth, delete that line.)

"You can take it off now," she said. Her tone was sickly sweet.

"I will when I'm done," he said. She glanced at him. He reached out blindly and grasped for her hand, melting the wrinkles out of her forehead. Maja took his hand squeezed. He took another deep breath and exhaled it slowly through his nose. "Yeah. I think I get it."

"Oh yeah?"

"Yeah. You know, all that. Scent, sound, feel, all of that's part of one thing. So you just experience most things with more senses than I do?"

"Yeah, basically."

"Well, poo poo, way to make it a lot less interesting," Kyle said. Maja snorted and gave his arm a light slap.

"It was the closest thing I could think of."

"Yeah. I can tell you spent a lot of time thinking of this. It was really sweet of you," he said. He wrapped his arms around her waist and leaned his forehead against hers. She laced her fingers behind his neck and closed her eyes. "Can I take this off now?" (starting to veer into sloppy maudlin crap )

Maja laughed and kissed him on the forehead, pulling off the blindfold with her teeth. She cast it aside in the sand and they swayed softly (yep, we've fully arrived) together in the breeze to a song that only she could hear.

"You know I love you, right?"(these are the words of a sociopath.. run for the hills Maja) He buried his head between her neck and shoulder. His breath could only stir her hair before it was whipped away by the wind.
"I love you too."

"That's not enough. You have to know I do." Kyle let his hands drop from her waist and cupped his hand under her chin. His eyes searched hers for confirmation. (more insanity)

"Yeah. It just takes me a second to remember sometimes." Maja gave him a wavering smile.

"That's not good enough. I can't keep getting so bogged down in everything that I can't even see what's in front of me." He pulled her head against his chest and stroked her hair. "It's been a rough year."

"I know. We both need to work on that, I guess. I'm not perfect either." She shrugged. "We still have time, though."

"We don't know that, this might be our last day together. I know, you hate it when I think like that but it's just that...don't get too confident in what you've got, you know?" he said. She nodded. He kissed her and grinned, "I could do a lot worse."

"That's sweet of you," she scoffed. She drew away from him and ruffled his hair. He pulled an exaggerated scowl that dissolved into laughter. Their fingers wound together, between them, and Maja smiled up at him.

"I really do love you, you know. I just need to get my head in the game."

"No, I do too. We just need to stop letting everything else come between us."

She drew him close, her arms clasped around his waist with all her strength. He wrapped his arms around her and in that moment there was no room for even the wind to cut between them.


Although you are capable of stringing sentences together that indicate an intelligent being and even decent trade writer unlike some others, next time just pour molten metal in my eye sockets.

Status: Dead and buried in the same place Kyle and Maja double suicided into their own graves for what is actually eternity.

Erik Shawn-Bohner
Mar 21, 2010

by XyloJW


I think I feel like judging you all next week and participating. I think I got a good idea.

Beezle Bug
Jun 5, 2009

I love painting trees.

twinkle cave posted:

TWINKLE CAVE CRIT


Although you are capable of stringing sentences together that indicate an intelligent being and even decent trade writer unlike some others, next time just pour molten metal in my eye sockets.

Status: Dead and buried in the same place Kyle and Maja double suicided into their own graves for what is actually eternity.

Yeah this kinda writing really is not my thing and like the last guy it was Flash Rule, but these are all really good points. Even if I suck at writing this kind of stuff the only way I can stop doing that is putting it out here and scraping its entrails off the floor when y'all are done. The lines you really hated, by the way, are actually not my own and are based on suggestions from a friend I had give it a once-over, so I guess I'd just better not do that. Thanks man!

twinkle cave
Dec 20, 2012


Beezle Bug posted:

Yeah this kinda writing really is not my thing and like the last guy it was Flash Rule, but these are all really good points. Even if I suck at writing this kind of stuff the only way I can stop doing that is putting it out here and scraping its entrails off the floor when y'all are done. The lines you really hated, by the way, are actually not my own and are based on suggestions from a friend I had give it a once-over, so I guess I'd just better not do that. Thanks man!

You take it like a true TD'r. Next time put the flash rule in the header and I'll know to look at it differently... i wondered about that. That friends advice = your downfall.

Erik Shawn-Bohner
Mar 21, 2010

by XyloJW


HiddenGecko is also coming back as a judge for next week. So it'll be me, him, and the winner.

There's another rule that I need to tell you.

Our good new buddy, twinkle cave, has informed me that he enjoys critting our poo poo. From now on, if you have a personal or all inclusive flash rule or special prompt, please include it at the top of your post. He's doing the Lord's work, and I invite anyone else who would step up to cleanse their souls to do the same.

I now open the floor to anyone who has suggestions on how to made the Thunderdome a more productive place for everyone. What do you like, what do you hate, and what would you like your humble servants, the triumvirate, to do for you?

Don't be shy.

twinkle cave
Dec 20, 2012


TWINKLE CAVE CRIT

sebmojo posted:

the girl who saw the music

567 words


I was most of the way through our last song when I realised I couldn't remember the loving ending. poo poo. There was some really specific crap I had to do and I couldn't remember it for the life of me. I glanced to my left, saw Jake on his knees hammering out fast pull-offs. Useless, wanker, no help. My mind was a sunbaked sargasso. I ran through the chorus chords for the second-to-last time, looked out at the crowd for inspiration, 400 stoned fuckheads thrashing back and forth like smoke-soaked seaweed. Also useless. poo poo. (alright, i'm into it)

That's when I saw her. She was standing at the front of the crowd, short hair, dark eyes. Staring at me. Lips moving, shaping words that noone could hear. I saw her tongue moving in her mouth, tip of the teeth, lips. She was saying, "delay".

A grateful wave of memory washed over me. Oh gently caress yes. That was it. Jake was on his back now, posing (wanker), so instead I caught Matt's eye and slammed my foot on the delay pedal. The roaring waves of sound hit like a tsunami as I slashed the strings. I dropped down to turn the knob hard right, giggled with relief as the noise tumbled over the abyss.

I looked up, wanting to thank my saviour with my eyes. Her face was right in front of mine, leaning forward over the low stage. Her mouth tasted of cigarettes as we kissed for the first time.

Later that night, in bed, she was evasive. "I just knew, Damian" she insisted. She had the sexiest Scots brogue you could imagine. Sounded like she was giving my name a long slow one. (nice image, gives the MC a lot of voice) "I could see it. What needed to happen. An'y'looked all cute and bemused so I thought I'd better share it with you." Then I think we had more sex. (why think... might read better "we had more sex")

I honestly didn't think it was that strange. And her other habits, that should have tipped me off, I found adorable. Like sitting on my balcony for hours with headphones on, drawing. As near as I could tell from the glimpses she let me see she wasn't even drawing anything. Just swirls, patterns, shapes.(pretty cool. mysterious actions) She wouldn't tell me what she was listening to, though.

Then one morning I pulled out the headphone cord by accident and Mariah Carey gave my hungover ears a coloratura enema. Mariah Cocksucking Carey, as I characterised her in the ensuing discussion. I ended up spending a few nights away, probably should have taken it for a sign. (an appropriate response. poo poo like this really matters and it makes me like the MC for being a stand up dude)

But signs are always most visible in the rear-view mirror. So we kept on, we kept on. Had some fights. She missed a few gigs. Couple of times I called her mobile and she didn't answer, then it went straight to answerphone for the next five calls.

Then one night we were driving to a gig, I was driving and humming a tune that had been in my head for a few days, thought it might make a good song. A song-foetus.(nice language) I stopped at the lights and turned to see if any cars were coming from the side. She was staring at me. Her lips were moving, I couldn't tell what the word was. She shuddered, picked up her bag. Got out of the car. I shouted after her but she didn't turn round.

I never saw her again.


Written with gusto and charm. But what the gently caress happened at the end. I was aware of the Maria Carey flash rule... was there some other strobing/guiding light? Mariah prompt handled classy. In the end I didn't know if she was the real flesh of an imaginary muse, maria carey's actual witch-doctor song writer that stares into space and feeds her all her hits and thus leaving the MC missing out on the opportunity of a life time to emulate mariah and become a majestic crooner himself, or just a flash in the pan hot sex weirdo chick that got away.

Status: Death. Loquacious barbarian finds himself confused in the arena. Not knowing which way to turn he is stabbed from all sides.

Chairchucker
Nov 14, 2006

The man was stunningly well dressed. He had a smart looking jacket, and a really neat looking cape, the lining of which was shimmering and sparkling in more than Oriental splendour, which is a great deal of splendour indeed, just ask Kipling.



Well all contestants have entered in some form or other, even though some may still have brought shame upon their families, but I guess that means eventually we judges can confer and make a decision about which of you is most and least shameful. Oorah.

sebmojo
Oct 23, 2010


Legit Cyberpunk







twinkle cave posted:

TWINKLE CAVE CRIT


Written with gusto and charm. But what the gently caress happened at the end. I was aware of the Maria Carey flash rule... was there some other strobing/guiding light? Mariah prompt handled classy. In the end I didn't know if she was the real flesh of an imaginary muse, maria carey's actual witch-doctor song writer that stares into space and feeds her all her hits and thus leaving the MC missing out on the opportunity of a life time to emulate mariah and become a majestic crooner himself, or just a flash in the pan hot sex weirdo chick that got away.

Status: Death. Loquacious barbarian finds himself confused in the arena. Not knowing which way to turn he is stabbed from all sides.

DEEEEAAATTHHHH.

My intent was she was a nice girl who could see music, viz the title. Their relationship was going south, she saw it in the tune he was humming, and got out first. Nothing more than that. Flash rule was just to have Mariah Carey in there, IIRC.

I think there's a few missing paras I could have put in there since that didn't come across.

Good crits, I'm going to enjoy applying the flensing knives to you and soldier boy, should be a fun fight.

twinkle cave
Dec 20, 2012


dromer posted:

Nes Gadol Hayah Sham, 1000 words

Nes Gadol Hayah Sham, 1000 words

I always sat in the corner of the room every Hanukkah, watching the children play with whatever cheap dreidel they bought from the market. The children knew the significance of the dreidel. Nes Gadol Hayah Sham, a great miracle happened here. What they never notice is the meaning of the game. Nobody can influence a dreidel once it begins to spin. None except for God. And he has built many lessons into that small toy.

Alan spun the top, and, after clattering on the wood floor, cam to rest on the נ, the nun. Disappointed, he handed the dreidel to the next player.
Life is often about waiting. I had been waiting in a train station from Germany to France. The chill of the winter air made everyone move in a hustle. The waiting rooms were so filled with smoke that some of the inhabitants had to duck out of the room to get a breath of fresh air. I was sitting outside, facing the train tracks, shivering so hard the rusty nuts that secured the bench to the concrete floor hummed from my shivering. Slowly, my train rolled up to the station, and I was the first in the queue. I flashed my ticket and pulled my luggage with me into the car. Behind me was a small woman. She was struggling to place her luggage onto the train, and I offered my assistance to her. She gladly accepted it, and we sat in the same booth. She, like me, was Jewish and looking for a new life, and had barely scrounged up the bucketful of marks it took to secure a train from Germany to France. I showed her the inside of the pillowcase I had brought with me. It was lined with million mark bills. We both laughed, glad to get away from at least some of our troubles.

Elizabeth spun the top and it landed with a clack on the ה, the Hei. She modestly took half the pot, and handed the dreidel to Alan. It is the small things in life that often matter.

The few years that had passed since Rebecca and I rode the train together were filled with many nice small surprises. I found a job quickly, and Rebecca made her wages from doing laundry. We found rented a nice flat in Paris, and filled it with many things over the years. We were married and she became quick with child. God had provided. It was no life of luxury, but it was an honest life.
Ruth spun the dreidel, and it landed on the ש, the shin. She placed one coin into the pot, (unnknowing if she will ever see that coin in her possession again) akward. Sometimes one just has to must trust in God, and that He has a plan for us. The Gimel tells us that God gives to those who serve him.

It was in 1939 that we first thought of leaving France. Europe was becoming unsafe, and Rebecca's family sent her many mails regarding the nature of America. Come over, they said, to the land of plenty (something more original), where none are hungry and everyone has work. We pulled our life savings together, and after hearing of Germany's success to the East, we decided, in April of 1940, to leave for America. We would have very little money when we arrived. got there, and no savings. We would have no job, no contacts (what about the family), and no knowledge of the land. As the boat slipped away from the dock, I read a letter from my close friend in Germany. He wished us the best luck in America, and he regretted not being there to his absence at send us off. It was the last letter I had ever received from him.

Noah spun the top emphatically and it bounced a few times before landing on the ג, the gimel. He greedily took every emptied the chocolate coins from the pot.
We had almost made it to America, and were submitting to the customs checks that would let us into the country when a finely dressed man, no older than myself, called to the captain and explained that “the papers weren't in order” and that we might have to turn back for France. We were all worried. We had (i'm not going to keep marking, but all the passive and supperlatives need to go: very, every, would, had, could, all, etc) heard over the radio that the war had begun in earnest in France and that the Nazis had broken through (should this be "circumnavigated" or "bypassed") the Marginot line with no effort.

We waited for days on the boat, silently praying for deliverance from the battleground of Europe. There was very little to do while we were waiting on the boat, so the eight or nine Jewish people on the boat spun the little clay dreidel we had found in Rebecca's suitcase, playing with marks and francs and dollars. Over those eight days, I learned the most curious thing about the dreidel: no matter how much one of us lost on one day, we would always get the money back. In the end, we all had the same amount of money as we had when we begun (this seems far fetched... at the least attribute it to an oddity of chance, not the power of god or the dreidel).

Finally, on the eighth day, the customs officer allowed us in. I still remember that some of the others immigrants ran to the officer and hugged him so tightly that the others immigration officers had to pull them off.

My family often wonders how I can't hear anything less than a shout but can hear the sound of a dreidel from a thousand miles away (this sentence is a nice idea, but it needs to be something more believable... it blows the story. Maybe "can hear a draddle in the next room" ). I only reply that it is the will of God that I have such a blessing. Our lives are all little coin pots in an eternal game of dreidel, being dealt each hand by God. Many times, life seems as though it is nuns and shins, and that you'll never see those coins you sunk into the pot again. But during those times, I always looked at the whole dreidel, at Nes Gadol Hayah Poh, at a great miracle happened here, and I can't help but agree.


Points for using the flash rule non-ironically or absurdly. As a morality tale it serves its function. More original language and situations may have added to this, but as immigration/dreidel story in a box it works. Acceptable though not mind blowing. There are a lot of little-bit words laying around that could be struck.

Rating: Almost died by strike-thru, but still living severally maimed leaving you partially deaf to beg the streets for survival, or taking your chances with the dreidel.

twinkle cave
Dec 20, 2012


Peel posted:

Edge (340)

Edge my foot forward. An edge. Edge it back.

“Keep going, grandad! Unless you want us to push you.”

Find the edge and explore sideways, sideways, there’s another edge. A way forward. How far does it go? Hold my arms out and shuffle feet onto the naked girder, one behind the other. Inch by inch, out into void.

“Man, he’s doing it!”

The world falls away and there is only the beam. Six inches wide, about. My mind screams to remove the blindfold but I can’t. Those three boys are there. Even together they are surely not older than (confusing... i guess i'm waiting for alzheimer's realization or something) me but that makes them young and strong.

Another step. The city is roaring (over strong, consider different word or description) in the distance. When I could see the other side, it didn’t seem so far. Maybe ten feet? Maybe fifteen? I can't remember but it wasn't so far. Keep calm. But it is so far. My heart thunders (also over strong). The other side is distant, rushing away at the speed of falling. There is no other side. The beam will end before my feet (reach it? Confusing sentence) and I will tumble.

“Remember grandad, way out’s over there. Keep going!”

Wind. Wind grips me and shakes me, freezing and lacerating, and the boys whoop and holler. I flicker in the wind and the beam is light like cloud and I swing (also confusing... do you mean "teeter" or something... or do you mean he's like swinging a hammer... if its the later than "but" doesn't work... if it is former, use dif word) but suck the wind in and lean into it and it passes and I am still on the endless beam, waiting for the end (waiting seems wrong...).

And then my foot brushes an edge and the world opens out before it and it is vast and sweet and safe (nice sentence). I grip the concrete with my hands and knees and drink the cool air in gulp after gulp. The boys laugh and cheer sick cheers but they do not come for me. As I tear the blindfold from my face I see them leaving and I see the bright sun on the broken concrete and I see just how short it was, just a few feet. A few feet between the edges of the world.

"Happy birthday papa."


My assumption is that grandpa is lost in a memory when his eyes are covered. Like a bird that sleeps dreaming of jungles when hooded. It wasn't clear how this was synesthsia or such related, other than he has memory and chronology confusion(but gently caress the rules anyway). The sentence about being confused about the boys age didn't seem to help anything. I liked the use of the beam and the descriptions you played with his imaginings. This seems the strongest part. Consider improving it even more. As a reader I didn't know why I was being told this story though. Why was he blindfolded? What was special about that moment on the beam(i'm assuming he was an iron-worker or some such)? There is potential here but more is needed for the reader to grip onto, some more ideas or devices. Inject more original thought. You have a "framework". Another mark against for using a paltry number of words when there was more here to work with.

Rating: Death. By steel girder plunging through chest or a mighty fall.

Bad Seafood
Dec 10, 2010

If you must blink, do it now.


How about a kind of scorecard thing? Everyone's best and worst, ranked only against themselves, their strengths and weaknesses as decided by the triumvirate.

For example:

BAD SEAFOOD (15 submissions)

Strength: Talking the talk.
Weakness: Walking the walk.
Best Submission: That one thing that was pretty okay I guess.
Worst Submission: Whatever he wrote this week.
Should Probably: Learn what a beginning is. And a middle. And an ending.

twinkle cave
Dec 20, 2012


sebmojo posted:

DEEEEAAATTHHHH.

My intent was she was a nice girl who could see music, viz the title. Their relationship was going south, she saw it in the tune he was humming, and got out first. Nothing more than that. Flash rule was just to have Mariah Carey in there, IIRC.

I think there's a few missing paras I could have put in there since that didn't come across.

Good crits, I'm going to enjoy applying the flensing knives to you and soldier boy, should be a fun fight.

I look forward to the flensing.

Martello
Apr 29, 2012

by XyloJW


Bad Seafood posted:

How about a kind of scorecard thing? Everyone's best and worst, ranked only against themselves, their strengths and weaknesses as decided by the triumvirate.

For example:

BAD SEAFOOD (15 submissions)

Strength: Talking the talk.
Weakness: Walking the walk.
Best Submission: That one thing that was pretty okay I guess.
Worst Submission: Whatever he wrote this week.
Should Probably: Learn what a beginning is. And a middle. And an ending.

:effort:

Peel
Dec 3, 2007



twinkle cave posted:

My assumption is that grandpa is lost in a memory when his eyes are covered. Like a bird that sleeps dreaming of jungles when hooded. It wasn't clear how this was synesthsia or such related, other than he has memory and chronology confusion(but gently caress the rules anyway). The sentence about being confused about the boys age didn't seem to help anything. I liked the use of the beam and the descriptions you played with his imaginings. This seems the strongest part. Consider improving it even more. As a reader I didn't know why I was being told this story though. Why was he blindfolded? What was special about that moment on the beam(i'm assuming he was an iron-worker or some such)? There is potential here but more is needed for the reader to grip onto, some more ideas or devices. Inject more original thought. You have a "framework". Another mark against for using a paltry number of words when there was more here to work with.

Rating: Death. By steel girder plunging through chest or a mighty fall.



What was actually going on was the dude was being forced to walk across a bare roof support in an abandoned ruined building by a gang. I wanted to try being super short and not explicitly expositing the setup but evidently, I went too far.

Thing I did: what I criticised some people for last round
Result: same as theirs

Adbot
ADBOT LOVES YOU

Erik Shawn-Bohner
Mar 21, 2010

by XyloJW


Bad Seafood posted:

How about a kind of scorecard thing? Everyone's best and worst, ranked only against themselves, their strengths and weaknesses as decided by the triumvirate.

For example:

BAD SEAFOOD (15 submissions)

Strength: Talking the talk.
Weakness: Walking the walk.
Best Submission: That one thing that was pretty okay I guess.
Worst Submission: Whatever he wrote this week.
Should Probably: Learn what a beginning is. And a middle. And an ending.

We can do it (I'll force the other two to man/woman up). Do you think it would be helpful or discouraging? We're just three people with opinions, so while I love the idea, I think it should be a free for all where people give an effort to do it. Make it inclusive, and we'll poo poo on the trash people as we always have.

I like the idea.