Very Slight Stories | Like short stories, only shorter.

'Darcy and O'Mara' is a novel by Arthur Cronin.
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Tuesday, February 24, 2009


A Story About a Pig

   This is a story about a pig called Earl. He always wore a blue sweater. This was a useful way of identifying him if you weren't good at spotting the distinguishing features of pigs. When Earl played the part of an astronaut in a play he wore a glass bowl over his head, and this enhanced his standing in the community. Piglets listened attentively when he told stories about his trips to space. He said he first went into space to get his red football. He kicked it into the air and it didn't come back down again, so he went into space to get it.
   While he was there he met a cat called Oscar who said he had gone into space to find his pet snail (someone had kicked the snail into space and, just like the football, he hadn't come back down again). The snail's name was Jack. They found Jack on the moon. He was angry about being kicked into space because it could have broken his shell, but on the other hand, he was glad to be on the moon. It was even more fun than the time the seven-foot-tall basketball player picked him up (the basketball player picked him up with the intention of kicking him, but he missed).
   Earl, Oscar and Jack thought they might as well make the most of their trip to the moon. They visited some of the tourist attractions. They went to where the moon's biggest wedding cake was being built. It was already over eight storeys high and people were living in the lower floors (they had eaten their way in). They watched moon cows jump over fences in a show-jumping competition.
   When they were on their way to a football match, Earl noticed that Oscar had red spots on his face, and then Oscar noticed that Earl had the red spots as well. Oscar got out a magnifying glass to look at Jack's face. The snail also had tiny red spots on his face. They must have contracted a moon disease, and if they went back to earth like that they'd be quarantined.
   They went to see a moon doctor. She looked at the spots on their faces, and she told them they had a disease called Steve Gertigum. It was called after the man who invented it. Steve had also invented a machine to measure the distance between pigs, but it only worked on the moon (this is why Earl had never heard of it). The doctor told them they'd have to go to Steve to find a cure.
   Steve's cure was a week of rest and relaxation at his moon resort. They spent a lot of time relaxing by the pool or fishing at a pond, but Steve was always nearby to make sure that Earl didn't get too close to any of the other pigs on the resort. He believed that when pigs got together they'd cause trouble. Waiters were always close at hand with drinks, and Earl believed that this was much more likely to cause trouble.
   By the end of the week the spots had cleared from the faces of Earl, Oscar and Jack. They were delighted with the results of their treatment. They told Steve it was worth getting the disease just for the cure, and they'd recommend the disease to all of their friends. But their goodwill evaporated when they got the bill. They couldn't possibly afford to pay it. "This is outrageous," Earl said to Steve.
   "Have you been talking to other pigs?" Steve said. "I always get trouble from pigs when they start talking to each other."
   "We don't have this sort of money."
   "If ye don't give me the money, ye get kicked out by Jeffrey."
   "We'll go for the latter payment option," Oscar said. Even if they had the money, he'd have chosen to be kicked out by Jeffrey.
   Jeffrey loved kicking things, but he preferred kicking things that didn't like being kicked. Oscar's eagerness to be kicked made Jeffrey angry, and his anger made him kick them as hard as he possibly could. He kicked them off the moon. The earth's gravity brought them home, and all three of them landed on something soft. Earl landed in a bath full of jelly, Oscar landed on Earl and Jack landed on Oscar.

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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