All Hail the Mighty Leaders

Speeches on stages

Histrionics on display

Dishing out promises

Serving disarray

Unrealistic targets

that no one will track

On the one who questions

sedition we shall slap

Selling nationalism

to a goal hungry mob

Weaponize the masses

Use the deadly throng

Distraction detraction

All play the trump card

*****

Written in 48 words in response to Sammi Cox’s Weekend Writing Prompt.

The drama-queen

The house was decorated like a dungeon. People in ghoulish attires moved in the shadows to eerie music serving snacks shaped like internal organs.

Yet the drama-queen started her histrionics – “I planned for this all year but now my party is totally ruined. Frankenstein can’t make it.”

*****

Written in 48 words in response to Sammi Cox’s Weekend Writing Prompt, using words from Ragtag Daily Prompt (shadows), and Word of the Day Challenge (ghoulish).

Perfect Cogs

I watch them hurriedly picking out their books for the next class. Little cogs in the wheel rushing from class to class filling their heads with information without the ability to process that information. Little cookie cutters churning out identical unimaginative answers. Their idea of fun and frolic being an ‘educational field trip’. Spending their youth working towards the perfect resume to get accepted into a perfect college that will land them the perfect job. Never understanding that to expect perfect was the most outlandish idea of all.

The bell rings. I straighten my tie and morph into another perfect teacher.   

PHOTO PROMPT © J Hardy Carroll

Written for Rochelle’s Friday Fictioneers, using words from The Daily Spur (picking), Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (outlandish), and Your Daily Word Prompt (frolic).

Que sera sera

Magic. How mesmerized we are as little children. We believe in the magic of fairies with their fairy dust, Santa on his reindeer sleigh, and even the magician as he pulls rabbits out of his hat and cards out of some audience member’s pockets. As teenagers we believe that we have become smart. Smart enough to outsmart them all. Magic is merely a sleight of hands and if we look closely enough, we can definitely figure their trickery out.

Then, we get to the age of ‘intelligence’, when we finally realise that the biggest tricks are played by the fates. The ultimate karmic magic show where we are the hat, we are the rabbit, and we are the shocked audience. We watch intently, we anticipate every move and take possible precautions, and yet…

Que sera, sera
Whatever will be, will be
The future’s not ours to see
Que sera, sera

Well, today I am in my stage of ‘wisdom’. I may not have bought the tickets, but I’ve accepted that I am a part of the show. I play with the cards dealt to me and I play with hope and caution. But when my chosen card ends up in somebody else’s pocket, if my favourite scarf becomes a dove and flies away, or even if my companion appears to be cut into two, I continue to sit back, make my moves, and hum the tune… Que sera, sera.

2019-2020 SoCS Badge by Shelley!

Written for the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt “trick.” 

Star struck

It was rather difficult to sport a professional expression when in fact she was buzzing with anticipation and glee like a kid in a candy store.

Her first live fashion show. The very reason that she had become a student of journalism.

As a teenager her interest in fashion had been insatiable. She had devoured every fashion magazine, spent hours dressing up and walking the ramp in front of her mirror, worked summers at the mall just so that she could befriend the girls at the cosmetic counters and get free makeovers. But as a size 4, she couldn’t possibly fulfil her dreams of becoming a model and her dad had refused to help pay for any ‘frivolous studies’. So, journalism it was. Then when it was required to pick a specialization, she didn’t require a second thought.

The lights dimmed. The music and strobe lights came on. She was in paradise.

The show was fabulous. The costumes were over the top, but the models looked truly divine. With their classic slender bone structure and silky bronzed skin, each was a goddess upon earth.

Late that night the dormant monster reared its ugly head again. Mary Luis Jane went to the washroom, stuck two fingers down her throat and brought out her entire dinner.

*****

Written for MLMM’s Tale Weaver #299 – Over The Top using words from the daily prompts: Ragtag Daily Prompt (anticipation), Your Daily Word Prompt (require), The Daily Spur (student), Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (insatiable), and Word of the Day Challenge (monster).

Blank

“Well mother, the doctor’s recommendation is that you do some puzzles. It will help with your memory. He did say crosswords, but until then improvising is the name of the game…” With these words she placed a box full of Leah’s alphabet beads in front of me.

“Leah’s going to cry until she gets these back.”

“How she feels is not pertinent. She was prancing around playing princess of the castle, scattering everything about. As queen of the castle I made her a deal; I get to annex the beads for a day and she doesn’t have to clean up her room until then. Every princess knows that agreements must be honoured, so she wont ask for it. At least not today. Which mean, as queen mother, you get to use them.

Now let’s see… ah, how about you spell out our family tree. Daddy and you, below that Micky and I, our spouses, children, etc. And then you build the tree upwards with grandma and grandpa’s families. Tell you what, you should use the empty room. More floor-space.”

So, there I sat, hours on end, doing nothing, because today of all days, I just wasn’t sure of her daddy’s name.

Photo credit: Morguefile.

Written for Roger Shipp’s Flash Fiction for the Purposeful Practitioner using words from the prompts:

Ragtag Daily Prompt (empty room), Your Daily Word Prompt (annex), The Daily Spur (recommendation), Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (pertinent), and Word of the Day Challenge (improvizing).

To Google or not to Google

Fandango’s Provocative Question #93 asks:

Do you think that the government (federal and state) should break up Google for having a virtual monopoly in the search engine arena? If so, why? If not, why not?

First, I’m not too knowledgeable about this. But when has that ever stopped anyone 😉

Second, I am a little conflicted about this. So, I will answer it in two parts.

In principal, I believe monopoly is not a good thing for either the consumer or the market. We have seen enough cases where companies when they start, offer tones of freebies, and loyalty perks and great customer service. But once they capture the market, all that great service and low cost goes poof. Meanwhile this monopoly has been gained by killing or absorbing the competition, and in the process snubbing out any new entrants.

I also have a problem with companies that discourage portability or inter app compatibility. That was my primary gripe with Apple.

Google, on the other hand has offered us great service without thrusting their own groups of apps down our throat. Thus far.

In short, while I love Google, I also believe that absolute power corrupts.

However, you cannot wake up one fine day and penalize someone for good business sense. Instead, the government should have issued and enforced guidelines and directives to ALL companies, that protect and encourage entrepreneurs and open source. Don’t allow the big cats to eat up the little ones. That in itself will act as a check on the big firms.

My only problem with Google, is that they, like all other companies, literally stalk us and sell our data to advertisers, and obviously push their preferred links to the top of the stack. Which again is good business strategy. It is the government’s responsibility to set guidelines that restrict such practices for all.

In summary, should the government break Google up – No. Should they set guidelines – Yes.

Bills a’ringing

“Sorry ma, I know that the loan’s overdue. But I have a good job now, so I will send you some money soon… No, no. I’m OK. Really ma, I’m fine. Don’t worry about me, OK. Bye… I love you too.”

She checked her watch. It’s past 10pm back home. They probably just finished dinner. How she missed ma’s hot fluffy chapatis.

Stretching her aching back, she sat down and resumed carving. Pumpkins carved by an Arts major – what a distinguished job indeed. But beggars couldn’t be choosers. Twenty-nine done and one to go. This would earn her 150 dollars.

But she needed more. A lot more.

Image by Bikurgurl

Written for Bikurgurl’s 100 Word Wednesday 172 challenge

Inevitability

The man at the reception issues me a curt instruction – “utilize the time wisely.”

A rather redundant warning, seeing as this was the moment that I had been dreading all week.

With much trepidation, I perch upon a cold hard chair. There was something chilling about the place, like a crypt that disseminates an aura of hopelessness and despair. Never again, I promise myself.

Seconds stretch into a minute and a minute into over ten minutes. My heart is now beating in synch with the creeping clock on the wall. Tick Tock… Lub Dub… Tick Tock… Lub Dub…

Eventually the door at the other end screeches open and in he comes. I admit, I did not expect a friendly or jocular countenance, but neither did I expect the walking dead. He appears to glide in and descend upon the chair. I am tempted to check for feet.

Tick Tock… Lub Dub… Tick Tock… Lub Dub…

I look towards the exit. If I leave now, would mother create too much of a fracas?

Slowly he raises his head. Cold disapproving eyes stare at me. Had my portion of breakfast been anything but miniscule, it would have been knocking at my throat right now. As it is, I feel a lump that I try to gulp down.

Eventually he hands me the marksheet.

*****

Written using words from the prompts:

Ragtag Daily Prompt (fracas, week), Your Daily Word Prompt (jocular, portion), The Daily Spur (promise, reception), Fandango’s One-Word Challenge (disseminate, utilize), and Word of the Day Challenge (chilling, crypt).