Tag Archives: story

1249. Unsterilized syringes

A while back, in fact quite some time ago, say in the late 1800s, doctors didn’t worry too much about sterilizing hypodermic syringes between patients. Diseases were passed from one patient to the other. The woman with tuberculosis was injected with stuff using the same needle that had just been pulled out of someone else’s bum cheek to treat something else. It was a disaster. Lots of people died.

And that’s probably why there are so few of them alive today.

1247. You are almost

There’s no need to fret and get upset. All I said was “You’re almost skinny enough to be a model”. I meant it as a compliment. It’s true – you are almost skinny enough to be a model. There’s nothing wrong with that. There’s no need to get upset about it.

Try to remember the positive – like the time you were fat and repulsive and you decided to do something about it. And you did. You lost a lot of unnecessary weight and you should be proud of what you’ve achieved and not upset about it. Of course, going on a diet like you did, can’t do anything about looks. That’s not my responsibility. Nor yours, to be frank. You can’t improve the face God gave you without a great deal of expense. Yet, you are almost pretty enough to be a model.

But being overweight is something you can do something about, and you did. Although all your old clothes no longer fit, and you look like a rag doll, that’s no reason to spend most of your time in tears, blubbering away like some God-forsaken lamb dressed as mutton. If you could perhaps adapt your clothes a bit I would say that you would almost be dressed well enough to be a model.

So, to sum up: you are almost skinny enough to be a model, you are almost pretty enough to be a model, and you would almost be dressed well enough to be a model to advertise the can of beans on our supermarket brochure. But you don’t quite tip the scales.


1246. Oh God! No one knows who I was

I could’ve solved this conundrum if I’d been asked when I was alive. Whole chapters have been written about me. Was I (the author of the stunning novel “Tickle the Moon”) also the poet who published the anonymous collection of poetry called “If you can’t rhyme then shut the fuck up”?

I have never used such a word in my life, let alone write it down. And yet, this could perhaps provide a clue to the poet’s anonymity. If I wouldn’t use the word “rhyme” in real life, then perhaps I was using it to disguise my identity.

I might add in passing that no one has questioned the authorship of “Quagmire behind the cowshed” by Lou Fuchs, even though it’s a fairly well known fact that Fuchs was my mother’s maiden name, and one she was pleased to get rid of. This collection of short stories has rightly taken its place on many a library’s dustless shelf – to say nothing of the digital overload it still causes in many an otherwise cheerful home.

So all in all, to sum up, and at the risk of repeating myself, I could’ve solved this conundrum if I’d been asked when I was alive. But I wasn’t.

1245. Resurrected extinctions

Mitch never realized it would make him a billionaire. He woke up one morning and discovered he was a billionaire. He had developed a technique to “resurrect” extinct species. It wasn’t that fancy a technology, Mitch thought. He was simply doing his job, and next thing there was a dodo running around his back yard.

The Forest and Bird Society made him an honorary lifetime member. Every ivy-league university with the slightest tinge of green conferred on him an honorary doctorate. The accolades and money poured in. Mitch thought it time he showed his appreciation for such benevolence. He held a feast and invited all these kind people.

Just to show how humdrum the process was – how easy to recreate extinct species – Mitch served up extinct Passenger Pigeon Pie, followed by a roasted extinct Caribbean Monk Seal. No one touched a thing.

Jolly vegetarians.

1244. The last word

Aaron and Meta had been married for a good long time. They’d often joked about what their last words would be.

“Everyone,” said Aaron, “would say a final word, even if it was spoken months beforehand.”

Meta thought her last word should be the name of a flower. “Roses” perhaps, or “Tulips”. She’d always liked tulips.

Aaron thought perhaps something practical, like “watering can” or “surgical tweezers”.

As it turned out, Aaron went first. Meta was sad, of course, but she couldn’t help but smile every time she thought of his last utterance: “slogginditchintiggle”.

1243. What?

Quite frankly, Liliane has grown tired of her husband saying “What?” to everything she said. It didn’t mean he was hard of hearing; it was simply a habit grown up over the years. He never used to be like that. In younger years he would listen. In his older years he’d say “What?” before she’d even finished what she was saying. And then, half way through repeating what she had just said, he’d begin to answer like he’d heard it the first time.

Honestly, Liliane would grit her teeth and smile. Marriage at times required that. It was, she convinced herself, part of them both growing older.

These days, now that he’s dead, Liliane would give anything to hear her husband say “What?” again.