Short Story – God Bless America

bible-and-flagThis week is actually a non fiction comedy piece I wrote for a political show last week.  The piece was supposed to be about third-party politics and I didn’t want to bash third parties even though I’m not voting third-party this year.

I came up with this piece which was, surprisingly for me, not particularly partisan one way or the other.  Instead, it is about one of my greatest pet peeves about American politics and America in general.

It’s fairly silly.  I hope it makes you laugh or at least it doesn’t make you cry.

Read More…

Shit that Pissed me Off – 10/21

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Criticizes Colin Kaepernick

I missed this one last week so I’m making up for it now.

This makes me sad because I love RBG in almost all things.  However, here is what she had to say about Kaepernick’s decision to kneel for the National Anthem:

I think it’s really dumb of them. Would I arrest them for doing it? No. I think it’s dumb and disrespectful.

Ginsburg has a right to her opinion.  And she certainly agrees he has a right to act as he had.  However, I’m really unpleased she chose the word “dumb” to describe her reaction to his act.  Disrespectful?  Sure. OK.  I mean that’s kind of the point.

But dumb?

I'll tell you what's dumb, Colin.  Throwing interceptions.  That's dumb.

I’ll tell you what’s dumb, Colin. Throwing interceptions. That’s dumb.

To her credit, she walked back her comments later in the week.  I’m still concerned she chose to make them in the first place.

I guess the problem is idol worship.  Ginsburg is by far my favorite Supreme Court justice.  As such, it saddens me when she says something with which I don’t agree.  It’s like my brain has delivered a thought that completely disagrees with everything else I thought my brain believed.

Which is, I guess, unfair to Ginsburg.  She gets to have bad opinions every now and again.  At least she is pretty good at recognizing when she should keep those opinions to herself.

So we’re cool, RBG.  Unless Donald Trump gets elected and you retire or die when he’s President.  We won’t be able to get past that.

Read More…

Short Story – Dinner by Candlelight

candleI’m still writing horror stories for October.  I read this one at The Not-So-Silent-Planet open mic last night.  After reading it, I decided to tweak it a little bit more before posting.

I don’t know if other writers do this, but I find reading my writing out loud has a huge impact on my response to the story.  I catch things that I don’t notice when I’m just reviewing it on the page.  Perhaps it is because I’m a playwright.

The story here is very dark.  I mean, that’s not such a surprise since it is supposed to be horror.  I think it’s a bit more nihilistic than some of my other work in this genre, though.

As always, thanks for taking time time to read my stories.  Please share, comment, or simply enjoy!

Read More…

Protest Votes

protesters-1I’ve been reading a bit about how some voters plan to vote for Gary Johnson or Jill Stein as a “protest vote” and I feel I need to talk about why that term bothers me so much.

I’m not bothered because they are voting for Johnson or Stein.  That is absolutely their right. If someone is voting for either candidate because they honestly believe that candidate will do the best job as President, I’m completely behind their vote.  Cast that fucker and be proud!

The protest vote movement, however, is a movement born of ignorance and – I’m going to get real here – laziness.

It takes virtually no effort to vote for a third-party candidate.  In fact, you don’t even have to tell anyone you’ve done so.  You can walk into a voting booth, check off a candidate so you can stick it to the two major parties, and walk out knowing your vote is completely private and nobody has to know.

Congratulations, welcome to the anonymous minority. Nobody is going to spend more than five minutes thinking about what you just did.

Read More…

Shit that Pissed me Off – 10/14

Donald Trump Apologists

Last Friday, tape emerged in which Donald Trump said derogatory things about women and the Republican party lost it’s collective shit.  Some of them think this is just the Democrats engaging in character assassination.  Others, like Scott Baio, defended him by saying it wasn’t that bad and telling ladies that guys talk like this “all the time.”

OK, Scott.  Two things.

One:  No they don’t.

Two:  It wouldn’t make it any better if they did.

Locker room talk – as Trump characterizes his comments – is a bullshit excuse.  Not only is it something you don’t find in a lot of locker rooms (as Chris Kluwe so eloquently points out), I just don’t think Trump has been in enough locker rooms to know.  It shouldn’t matter anyway because bragging about being able to sexually assault women shouldn’t happen anywhere.

But what truly upsets me is the shock some members of his party have expressed since the tape was released.  Donald Trump has always struck me as a sleaze.  It didn’t take a presidential campaign to convince me. Learning he said (and allegedly did) the sorts of things that a sleaze says (and does) only reinforced my opinion.  I wasn’t surprised.

But I was disheartened that so many seemed shocked to learn that Donald Trump was precisely the person he has always presented himself to be.

Hi, I'm Donald Trump, and I'm going to tap this.

Hi, I’m Donald Trump, and I’m going to tap this.

In retaliation, some supporters (and Trump himself) have pointed out that Bill Clinton is also a sleaze.  And that may be true.  It is also irrelevant.

Let’s think of it this way – Melania Trump was a nude model (and there is nothing wrong with that).  Would it be fair to judge her husband for choices she made?  I would assume most conservatives would say “no” and yet they have no issue judging Hillary Clinton for the actions of her husband.

Yes, Hillary has stood by her husband.  It could be because she loves him.  It could be for the sake of their daughter.  It could be for political reasons.  I don’t know.  I do know that women stick by their cheating husbands all the time.  Melania Trump does it and nobody seems to view that as an issue.

Finding out that Donald Trump treats women badly is as surprising as finding out that Superman can fly.  We’ve all seen Superman fly.  He does it all the time.  We’ve all seen Donald Trump treat women like objects.  He does it all the time.

Does Trump’s behavior make him unfit to serve as President?  You bet it does.  But his behavior isn’t new.  We aren’t suddenly discovering the body of Jimmy Hoffa in Trump tower.

He was never fit to serve as President.  He was always that guy.

Read More…

Shit that Pissed me off 10/7

Trump Gets in Trouble for Something He Didn’t Do

No, I’m not talking about paying his taxes.  Although he also didn’t do that.  Though apparently having enough money to hire a really talented team of tax accountants and lawyers makes him “smart” rather than “rich.”

In this case, though, he is getting some heat for having said that soldiers with PTSD aren’t strong.  Basically, he told soldiers who suffer from mental illness as a result of combat stress that they are complete wimps.


Here’s the problem though – that’s not what he said.  And in context, what he said was clearly not meant to disrespect soldiers with PTSD.  You need to twist his meaning to a dizzying degree to come away thinking he was even accidentally implying that having PTSD made you weak.

Trump says any number of horrible and outrageous things.  It seems to me that those of us who justifiably think he is a buffoon and he should never hold elected office of any kind could stick to the string of stuff he actually said rather than manufacturing controversy where none exists.

Can’t we just hate Trump for who he is?  I mean, that ought to be enough. Read More…

Short Story – The Surface

chained_door_by_kinyinI’ve been participating in an open mic night since January and one of the requirements is stories that are about 5-7 minutes in length.  That translates to about 3-4 typed pages.  At least once a month, that means I’m trying to write a very compact story around 1000 – 1500 words in length.

It’s a different kind of challenge.  A lot of the time, I’m working with suggestion and ambiguity because I don’t have a lot of time to fully realize a world.  The goal is to create the feeling there is more on the edges of the story and to give the reader/listener the opportunity to fill in some of those edges for themselves.

I feel like this would make a good series of comics.  At least the ending seems to lead to something that could, I think, be explored in a more visual format.

As always, please feel free to share, comment, and give advice.  Thanks for reading!

Read More…