|Very Slight Stories | Like short stories, only shorter.||
Tuesday, June 30, 2009
A Short Story
You can make some long stories short and still be telling them at dawn. Stories about trips to the moon rarely get finished before a new day begins. Some people say you should chew gum instead of telling a story. They point out that chewing gum will rarely keep you up all night and that listening to someone chewing gum is more enjoyable than someone telling a story about a trip to the moon. I have a story about the time I found a set of false teeth. I didn't want to put them in my mouth without testing them on an animal first, so I put them into a dog's mouth, but he ran away.
In the longer version of this story, there's a trip to the moon. But I can easily cut that out and greatly reduce the length of the story without diminishing its impact, and ensuring that it has a chance of competing with someone chewing gum.
I chased the dog through the fields, and then... [Scenes Deleted] ...I was chased by a farmer with a pike, two astronauts, a priest, two volleyball teams and a motorbike gang, along with the dog who had my false teeth. You could tell that the gang were evil because they kept jam in their mouths. They'd stick a knife in their mouths to get the jam and spread it on bread. I'm not going to mention where they kept the butter. The chase came to an end when I came across a man who was standing on a wooden bridge over a stream. A strange noise was coming from his brain. You could hear the sound through his nose. Myself, all the people who had been chasing me and the dog all listened at his nose until dawn. It sounded as if something in his brain was chewing gum. The dog was lulled to sleep by the sound, and I was able to remove the false teeth from his mouth and put them in my own mouth without anyone noticing. I casually walked away while everyone else was distracted by the sound from the man's nose. The motorbike gang were making their breakfast. They had started a fire and they were frying sausages, eggs and rashers on it. I think it's best that I end this story before mentioning where they kept the food.
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Stacey and George
Stacey and George were perfect for each other. They both liked metal. She had a pierced nose and he had two staples in his fold. Her mother didn't like George. His gooballs nearly popped out of his head when Stacey told him all her mother had said about the traffic in and out of his head. He didn't like the thought of having her as a mur-in-law and she didn't want a son-in-lawn with green hair that he hadn't mown in over a year. But he needed to impress her for Stacey's sake.
They spent a long weekend together. You could drive a but-bus through the space between 'They stayed with her aunt' and 'her aunt lived in a hole'. In the evenings her aunt drank a lot of whatskey and dot dot dot I remember when I was what I was when I was no-high to a dot's meow. In every hour there would be a few seconds when she'd make sense before rolling what she'd made up into a ball and throwing it out the indow or in the outdoor or at the painting of a wet piano. On one of those occasions she told George he could impress Stacey's mother with a bit of entrepreneurial flair.
They decided to leave on the following day when the aunt's friend Violet arrived and it became too crowded in the hole. They went to his uncle Albert's house. Albert had ten spare bedrooms and he was delighted to see Stacey and George because he wanted someone to house-sit his house while he went to visit Mrs. Foldegold to see if she'd made any progress with her latest invention (child-proof locks for eye-lids). The journey to Mrs. Foldegold's house would take a few days. He used his M pony while his L pony was being repaired.
George had an idea. He could start a guesthouse while his uncle was away and he could advertise it as a haunted house to draw in the crowds. Making a success of this would be just the sort of thing to impress Stacey's mother.
Tourists arrove in their droves when news of the haunted house spread. George and Stacey had to send most of them away. They got a man called Clive to pretend to be the ghost. He used to do some odd jobs for Uncle Albert. They found him in the garden using a squaredriver to fight off the cloudboys who advance on him with tennis rackets.
The house looked spooky at night.
But the only ghostly thing about Clive was the slow flecks of snow flakes falling from his shoulders in the moonlight. The guests were angry because of this obvious charade, but then the real ghost appeared. When she introduced herself as Mrs. Gladflug she gave them all enough of a fright to make cow bunnies jump Dover the white cliffs of the moon when the sun's gone down. She saw that she had an audience and she started talking. The more she rambled on, the more she eased their fears. She spoke about a day spent working in the gardens around this house. "The mothibirds were flyering around my hairspace and my hair piece was making grumpfudge. I made them go getaway with my fly-swisher. I dig dugged a hole in the gardilawn when the flyspider's backs were turned, digged dug. I found a box of gold in the hole and I was afraid in case whoever had birdied it there might come back and find me with their gold. So I buried it somewhere else in the garden to give me time to think. But I took too long to think and I died before I had a chance to use the gold or lose it on horses."
All the guests were excited when they went to bed. George and Stacey were happy with a job well done, but when they woke up in the morning and looked out they saw a garden full of guests with shovels and lawns with holes. Everyone was trying to find the treasure, and Uncle Albert was due to return later that day.
George and Stacey needed to work quickly to repair the damage done. They filled in the holes, but they needed something to cover the places where the earth had been dug up. George took all the old garden furniture, statues and junk out of the shed and he used these to cover the sites of holes. He used the junk to make sculptures. He created a garden as weirdiful and wonderful as a pack of multi-coloured chancers tumbling down a mountainside. Uncle Albert was delighted with it. He told all of his friends and neighbours about the garden, and many tourists came to see it. George became a successful gardener, which greatly impressed Stacey's mother. She loved what he did to her own garden, even though he still refused to mow his hair.
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Mabel Hobbeloe's Circus Truck
Mabel Hobbeloe's circus truck will come to town. You'll be sorry if you're not there for her arrival. Mabel has no time for losers who feel sorry for themselves. Are you a loser? Are you a monkey? (I have to ask that question for legal reasons). If not, come to Mabel Hobbeloe's circus truck, where you'll see mechanical animals and clowns with hair that moves of its own accord. Bring a friend, even if you have to tie them to a trolley and wheel them there. You'll be able to exchange that friend for a gift, which will be presented to you by Mabel herself.
Tuesday, June 09, 2009
I found a silver spoon. I put it with the spanner I had found earlier. According to the set of instructions in my manual, I should knock on Nick's door after finding a silver spoon and a spanner. I needed to find out who Nick was and where he lived. I consulted my book. Before I came to the bit about Nick I had to read many chapters about a man who had spent most of his life varnishing hovercrafts. As he worked on the hovercrafts he was mentally writing his memoirs on the walls of his mind. It took him nearly forty years to complete his memoirs. To recite them, he'd have to imagine walking into the vast mental mansion he'd built. He'd start reading from the walls in the hall, where he'd written about his ancestors. He claimed to be a direct descendent of a cathedral.
Tuesday, June 02, 2009
How I chose the aunt
The storm story I had adopted as my life turned out to have an unexpected twist. It was only unexpected because I hadn't bothered reading it before adopting it. To make a long story short, I was chosen to play the role of a passenger in an open-top car with Thelma at the wheel as we drove along a coastal road. Take a drive with Thelma and you lose the will to live. I decided I needed to be accompanied by an aunt, but which aunt? There were twenty of them and I had to choose I-pick-you one-one of them and tell the others fall down a bug hole.
The Tree and the Horse
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.
More blogs about Storytelling.