Very Slight Stories | Like short stories, only shorter.

'Darcy and O'Mara' is a novel by Arthur Cronin.
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Tuesday, January 10, 2006



   William evicts the mice from his house. "Don't come back," he says to them as he closes the front door. He walks back down the hall towards the kitchen, and the cowboy walks behind him.
   The cowboy follows him everywhere, always telling him how dangerous smoking is, smiling and winking all the time.
   William stands in the kitchen, thinking about how to evict the sink. The cowboy stands behind him. "Smoking kills," he says, and winks a few times. "There are many health problems related to smoking."
   A bottle falls over. "Do you want to be evicted too?" William says to it.
   On the following morning, the homeless mice appear in the newspaper. There's a photo on the front page of the mice in coats and hats, carrying tiny suitcases. William is described as a leading academic in the article. He reads it out loud and the cat makes a noise that sounds like a laugh. "I'm going to evict you."
   The cowboy tries to hold back laughter as he says, "Smoking is... I think... it's..."
   "You are so evicted."
   On the following day, the story in the paper is about how he evicted a prominent anti-smoking campaigner. There's a photo of the cowboy with the mice.
   William meets someone in a quiet car park late at night, and they exchange brown envelopes. He goes to his weekly bridge game. During the game he says, "I just met someone in a car park and exchanged brown envelopes, and I bought a new kettle... Forget what I said about the car park."
   When he looks at the front page of the paper on the following morning, there's a story about how he bought a new kettle. "That was a close one," he says to himself.
   The doorbell rings, and William opens the door. The three mice are there with the cowboy, who has a wig under his cowboy hat. "My name is Mozart," he says, "and I was wondering if you could let us stay in your house for a while. I'm playing in the area. These are my three assistants. One of them is Bach. I don't know which one."
   The mice are wearing wigs too. William knows who they really are, but he plays along and he says he'd be happy to have Mozart and his assistants stay with him. They step inside and the cowboy says, "Composing is fantastic." He winks. "I love nothing more than spending all day composing music." He smiles and winks a few times.
   One of the mice says, "We heard you got a new kettle."
   "Yeah, would ye like to see it?"
   "We'd love to."

The Tree and the Horse
Henry Seaward-Shannon
A Walk in the Rain
The East Cork Patents Office
Words are my favourite noises




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very slight stories

They Met a Bear
  They stopped in a small seaside town and they went for a walk. They met a bear.
  This is one version of the story. In another version, they met a sailor, and in this one they ended up being held at gunpoint on a speedboat and becoming unwilling participants in a diamond robbery while disguised as a cow, and sharing in the proceeds of that crime.
  So when they tell the story they just say, "We met a bear. He waved at us."

The Story of the Fortune Teller and the Alarm Clock
  A fortune teller threw an alarm clock at me. This story is deliberately lacking in details to mock the predictions of the fortune teller. Although she was right when she said she'd throw an alarm clock at me.

  One. Two. Three, the study. Four, a candle stick. Five. Six...
  Seven is missing, presumed dead. One has taken up the case, and two is helping him in his investigations. They both suspect six. Seven was last seen next to six in the garden.
  But seven isn't really dead. He's consumed half a bottle of whiskey and he's currently in the orchard, talking to a rabbit. "One of us is as boring as a gate post," he says, "and it's not..." He stops to count on his fingers. "No, actually it is me."
  Eight nine ten.

Debbie and his dog
  Debbie was sick of people mistaking her for a man.
  "Is your dog my parole officer?"
  She was sick of people asking her that too.

Very Slight Stories: like short stories, only shorter

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