Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Don't be Caught Dead without Jesus!

We encountered this vehicle in the Calais region of the Main-land earlier this month. Made me think theologically again, which causes heartburn, eyetwitches, and erratic sleep. Damn. Literally.

"Accept sweet baby Jesus as your eternal savior or he will grab you, impale you on a spit and slowly roast you over hellfire whilst laughing mockingly (in his infantile yet omniscient way). Amen!"

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Queen of America

So, I can't help but notice that the Queen of England has been touring our cemeteries, planting trees in our gardens, hanging out at our horse tracks...all the things that make a national leader.

Is she taking this country back, now, or what?

Good for her. Why wouldn't she? She's like a shark that smells dumb in the water.

Our fearless leader is probably "autographizing" the pertinent paperwork, even now. Hail to the Queen!

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

may I have my $28 000 back, please?

My whole life has become like my time on the treadmill. If I think too hard I topple over.

Speaking of which....

I saw something on the news today about the woman with the Marian Grilled Cheese. I saw the sandwich for the first time.

There has been a terrible mistake.

That is not the Virgin Mary. No, no! It is Clara Bow. CLARA BOW!

Mary wouldn't have worn that much eye shadow. She wouldn't have worn that style of eye shadow even if she went all to hell in Egypt. No way, no how. That is Clara Bow. Although Crimsoncrow suggests that it may be Clarabell the clown, which is possible. Yet I offer pictorial evidence: I get a cut off that $28 000 sandwich? Oh. Well, fuck it, then.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

something from the vault: short fic

I was what you might call "homicidally creative" when I wrote this, last Halloween. Consider it a very early offering for the next one. :) Trick or treat!

Cressida scrutinized her image in the full length mirror. She was pleased with the whole Halloween ensemble. The Cinderella thing had worked out well.

She looked great in the pink ball gown and cheesy, plastic tiara. Sure, it would be cold with no coat on, but she had two pairs of long underwear leggings concealed beneath the billowing folds of her skirt. It was a worthy sacrifice when she looked this hot.

She was pretty sure that volunteering at the haunted house in her local library would be a good way to meet guys. She was taking admission and handing out tickets. Even that spooky atmosphere felt like a better bet than a club or a bar. Surely she would meet a better type of guy at the library, for heaven's sake.

She had gone to a party at a friend's house last year. It had been okay and she had met a cute guy, but he hadn't lasted very long. This time, she was sure to do better. Especially in this dress.

Cressida stepped out of her apartment building and onto the street. It was perfect New England weather. The air was cool but far from chilly. Flame-colored leaves wafted down upon her like confetti. She liked the sound that her opalescent shoes made as they clicked down the sidewalk.

There were children absolutely everywhere. It was cool to see the costumes. The oldies were out. She saw Frankenstein, Dracula, Witches, and Bugs Bunny. Then came all the new additions. She didn't even recognize all of the characters. Some that she knew included Sponge Bob and several members of the Fantastic Four.

There were already throngs of totally hyper kids and very impatient adults surrounding the library. Cressida had to shoulder her way to the front and wait for the sour-faced librarian to open the door. Yet she felt like a celebrity being slipped into an exclusive club when it swung open just for her.

"You're late," she said. "I asked Ed if he could do it. He can do it if you can't do it. Can you do it?"

Cressida looked around. Nope. There was no one else there. The librarian was definitely glaring at her.

"Ah…sell the tickets?"

The blue-haired lady scowled over her reading glasses for a full quarter-minute before saying,

"That is what you came to do, isn't it? Ed can do it if you can't do it."

"Right. I can do it."

Another quarter-minute. "Well, alright. The card table is over there by the door. I'll just go and tell Ed. Unless you want him to…."

"I can do it!"

Cressida turned on her opalescent heel and stomped to the card table. It tilted to the right when she leaned on it. The cash box slid loudly across the surface and landed in her hands. She saw the librarian glaring at her as she flopped down on her metal chair.

That part was awkward. She had started to reconsider this whole library thing when the doors swung open and a huge flood of people came in. From then on she was way too busy for regrets.

She saw a lot of really cute kids. One brought her a paper cup of candy corn. Then a baby took some of the same sweets out of its mouth and tried to force the goo into Cressida's face. It was a sweet gesture, but it put her off the candy for the rest of the night. Oh, well. Good for her diet.

She counted a lot of change. The number of adults who paid for their kids' five dollar admission with a twenty was outrageous. Cressida had to ask the surly librarian for small bills about two dozen times.

She usually received the money via "Ed" – a giant guy who reminded Cressida of a cross between the Frankenstein monster and Igor. The guy wasn't even wearing a costume. The way he looked at her gave her the creeps.

More importantly, she also got checked out by several cute guys. Some were a couple of years younger than her, but she wouldn't be robbing the cradle. There was an extremely tasty James Dean. She met two hot Elvises (in addition to four more really gross ones).

She got two phone numbers (James and not-gross-Elvis-number-two), but Cressida was a little disappointed at the end of the night. She had not found her ideal man, whom she had decided in her third hour under the library-murals (bearing huge paintings of many literary characters) would have the personality of Harry Potter, the intellect of Charles Dickens, and the physique of Rhett Butler.

She tried not to feel too disappointed. No one bats a thousand, so to speak. Maybe the phone numbers would pan out. Otherwise she would have to focus her energy on New Year. It was the other holiday that she liked to work for dates with cute men.

Cinderella didn't have much more than her glass slippers (and very sore arches) when she began the slow walk home. The pitch-black night was cold and felt considerably less friendly, by then.

It was about ten blocks from the library to Cressida's apartment. It felt a lot farther when she couldn't see her hand in front of her face. Every strange sound seemed to echo with hidden and unfriendly meaning.

She had herself thoroughly psyched out by the time she had gone four blocks. Then she heard the footsteps.

For a while she could convince herself that someone else was simply walking in the same direction. Yet two right turns and a left made her feel differently. Someone was following her.

She forced herself to think. She looked around at the darkness that enfolded the entire street. All the shops were closed. All the families and packs of young trick-or-treaters had gone home.

She and this person – whoever it was – were alone.

Cressida thought fast. She had about five more blocks to go. There was no one around.

Absolutely no one, save whoever was following her. She would have to walk home as fast as she could and hope for the best.

"Walk assertively," she thought to herself. "Don't look uncertain, at all."

The memory of those college campus safety presentations didn't do much more than fill the time as her opalescent heels clicked and clacked – each step taking her closer to her goal.

She felt relief flood through her as she reached the front door to her building. She would be safe inside her own apartment in a matter of moments. Her key barely fumbled as she rammed it in the lock. She congratulated herself for being so smooth.

As the door swung open, the little windows that were at Cressida's eye-level flashed a reflection from the dim streetlights. She caught a glimpse of the person who followed her.

It was a man. He was big and broad-shouldered. As she ducked through the entry and slammed the door, it registered. The man was Ed.

She knew that the front door would lock behind her. She raced up the stairs to the landing on the second floor. She had never been so happy to have an apartment at the top of the building, before. She had another flight of stairs to go.

Cressida paused before starting up the second staircase. Her heart fluttered when she saw Ed's form cast its warped reflection through the thick glass in the door.

Her thoughts froze in unison with her breath as a metallic click sounded on the lower floor. Good Samaritans did not generally pick locks.

Cressida slipped out of her opalescent shoes and picked them up. Her stocking-feet made no sound as she scrambled up the next set of stairs. She was nearly to her own safe abode.

She could hear footsteps behind her. They were heavy and slow. Cressida broke into a run, oblivious to the noise that she made.

"Keys. Keys!" she chanted to herself. She swore under her breath as they skittered over the surface of the lock. She would never make fun of those women in the horror flicks again. This was hard work when you were scared shitless and in a hurry.

She fell through the door as it swung open. It was a miracle that she didn't land flat on her face. Yet she was able to slam the door shut behind her. The deadbolt clicked with a reassuring finality.

Surely that was it for Ed. He had no way of knowing which of the four apartments on the third floor belonged to her. Unless….

Shit! She had dropped one of her opalescent shoes. It must be somewhere in the hall – somewhere close to her door.

She could hear Ed come off the landing and into the hall. His footsteps paused before heading toward her door.

Cressida could not believe that this was happening. Not to her. Yet it was. She had to do something.

She forced herself to pry her ear off the surface of the door. She walked on her tiptoes into the kitchen. She looked around for a weapon. Potato masher? No. Can opener? Not really. A grapefruit spoon? Jesus….

She opened the broom closet and began desperately feeling around in the dark corners. She could barely breathe and her shaky hands were slippery with sweat.

"Hurry, idiot! You asked for this when you went out. Now you'd better hurry…."

This whole evening was not going according to plan. All she had wanted to do was meet some sweet, hunky guy with muscle tone like….

Cressida froze. Metal slid into the lock on her door. There was a scratching sound for a moment and then the hinges squeaked. Ed was inside. He had to be.

A tall shadow loomed in the living room. Ed's blocky silhouette wavered eerily in the indirect beam of the kitchen light. He moved toward the living room for a moment – then stopped. His shadow grew thin, then thick. It moved directly toward the kitchen.

Heavy footsteps finally reached the room. Black leather shoes that must have been the largest size made scuffed upon the edge of the beige linoleum. He was here. He was finally in the room.

The six-foot-something stalker lurched into the kitchen. He confronted his prey, at last. He and Cressida stared at each other for a long, surreal moment. Then she split his chest wide open with her axe.

Ed made the sound that they always made. He looked down at his torso and then crumpled like an enormous doll. Cressida's sweaty hands slipped down the axe handle. She had trouble pulling it out of his ribs.

"Pig!" she cried. She braced her foot on his upper leg and yanked the weapon clear.

"You deviant, presumptuous pervert," she finished. "I didn't even get to put plastic down!"

The next blow took his head clean off. Ed's desperate, groaning breaths were cut short with a squelching crunch. The head rolled across the bare linoleum and wedged itself in the gap between the fridge and the floor.

"Oh, great," Cressida muttered. "I'll have to move the whole goddamned fridge to clean that. Where are the paper towels?"

She hated it when things did not go according to plan. She always took the time to meet the right guy. She liked the ones with soft eyes and a good build. She was into the Ken-doll vibe.
More importantly, she was into hygiene. She usually drugged them with some Ambien in a drink, or something. Then the process could be controlled. She always put plastic down.

Now, here she was. A dead Frankenstein knock-off was gushing guts onto her clean tile. He would leach onto the living room rug if she didn't find the paper towels. Not to mention that it was Halloween. If she got any late night, co-ed trick-or-treaters, she was screwed with a capital-s.

Oh, well. She could tell them that it was fake blood. She had made her own little haunted house – and not the PG-13 variety. Sure. If she got the body cut up fast enough, she could probably explain the blood.

Cressida lined the doorways with a levy of paper towels. She washed her hands and put her pink dishwashing gloves on. She would have to reorganize the freezer. She had been running on leftovers for several months, but she still had some chops and about five arms.

"Oh, well. Feast or famine," she told herself. She gave Ed's carcass a kick with her stocking-clad foot and mumbled, "Trick or treat."

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Happy Beltane!

Happy Beltane! See a super-cool article on Cauldron Living about the holiday, if you have questions.

:) set something on fire and think of me. ljl