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So what's this comic about?



So what's this comic about?


It has been almost a year since Dave has driven a car, but it’s because he is a car. This may not make sense now but it will. There’s a town where there is a car named Dave that drives cars. He’s a mascot that doesn’t make enough money to own a car any longer. Because he has to pay for gas and all this other stuff like repairs. The money Dave no longer has, went to him purchasing a highly expensive mascot outfit that looks like a car. This mascot outfit was over the top, but Dave should’ve done his research. The sad part about this is, nobody ever caught on. The team he was supposed to mascot for doesn’t exist because Dave just happened to be the victim of a scam.

Dave was told that all he had to do was show up for auditions to a sports team that has automobiles as its theme, and the person with the best original mascot outfit would be the team’s new and first mascot. Things aren’t looking too good for Dave. Until much later, when he discovers that the person who had put his custom-made mascot outfit together is a big designer from somewhere across the globe. So Dave takes his mascot outfit to auction and makes a really big fortune off of the piece. But instead of taking his earnings to go get his car back, he decides after all of this that he would rather just walk.

He thinks walking would be great until he gets hit by a car that looks like his mascot outfit and dies. He dies at the thought of that happening, but, actually, he is fine.

“Dave, wait up”, says Jan.

Jan is short for Janice and she is the creator of the mascot outfit Dave had sold.

“Hey Jan, I sold that outfit you made for me, and it brought me so much money.”

Jan takes a long look at Dave, “Yea, I see you look a lot better and I hear you bought a house.”

“Yea, I looked at that well-designed mascot outfit and since I spent so much for it and I did some research and saw that you’re a pretty big designer across the globe and I sold it for a lot.”

Jan pulls out some paper work.

“Yea Dave, I told you that when you signed these papers at my shop this means that the outfit I made for you is not for auction. The mascot outfit was for rent and not for purchase, I’m taking you to court."

This story was written by Malcolm Williams. Malcolm is currently studying journalism at St. Joseph's college on Long Island. He previously attended Stony Brook University where he was enrolled in their Journalism and English programs. He has also obtained his Associates degree in Communications for the year 2014 from Suffolk County Community College.


It was on a dreary night of November that I beheld the accomplishment of my toils. I assembled the wires, tongs, cables, and levers to animate the lifeless body beside my keds. A half-eaten tuna-avocado sub lay by its head. Taking a gulp of tequila and half a valium, I decided to name him Bert. 

At one in the morning, I flipped the switches, and the body convulsed. In fact, it continued its spasmodic shuddering even after the current caused a power outage, and I realized, with horror, that Bert was shooting his wad. Yes, that’s right -- he was splooging, getting off. A full body orgasm brought him into existence, and to my horror, I was both the author of his being and of his unspeakable jouissance.

He was not the least bit hot or sexy, though I had planned him to be. I’d pillaged the graves of Montgomery Clift, Rudolph Valentino, and a Mister Universe from the late 1950s, and I’d selected their best parts, but to no avail. His facial features were grooly, his lank hair slimy, his foul body unshapely, repellant, shocking and grotesque. In short, my Adam was eye broccoli.

My parents, the self-help book industry, and my grade two teacher, Aretha Payne, were again proven wrong on that dreary November night. Hard work and passion had governed me for two years. As for that state of mind my therapist calls “flow,” well, I’d been flowing like the Nile while I’d infused life into this end-of-term project/person. And how did I feel now? Blargh. I was one sad panda.

I stomped restlessly around my diggings, made my contribution of flow in the reeking stairwell, and zoned off into a quagmire of Freudian dreams. My girlfriend was my mother, their breasts covered with maggots, until my limbs too convulsed. It was the creepiest orgasm I’ve ever had. When I woke up, there was Bert trying to fix his slimy yellow eyes on me. He smiled and babbled an infantile gibberish, grabbed my finger in his fist, and waved it around in the air saying “Gaaa,” “Gaaa” through his thin black lips. Then he hiccupped and dribbled some spit on his chin. His mouth made rooting motions, and I recoiled.

Did I mention that he was ugly? When dead, he was a pale bagface, a genuine woofer, but I thought animation (or possibly cosmetics) would improve his complexion, lend a sparkle to the eye. Instead he became a thing such as even Stephen King could not have conceived. Bert was one grizzly chicken.

Dejected, I went to the pub, where out from a taxi popped my best friend, Henry, who’d been abroad. I hadn’t seen him for years, the last time being the Rock, Paper, Scissors Bavarian National Championship where I’d almost made semi-finals. Henry and I drank tequila, and I told him about my gigs as a Tom Jones impersonator. Then, wondering if Bert’s sexual orientation would be as ambiguous as my own, I fainted.

Monika Lee is a Canadian poet. She wrote gravity loves the body (South Western Ontario Poetry Press, 2008) and the poetry chapbooks, skin to skin (Fire-stealing Primates’ Press, 2016) and slender threads (EBIP and Canadian Poetry Association, 2004). Her one-act play, “The Petting Zoo,” was professionally staged in 2011. She also published a book of literary criticism, Rousseau’s Impact on Shelley: Figuring the Written Self (1999). She is a Full Professor in the English Department at Brescia University College at the University of Western Ontario in London, Ontario. She teaches nineteenth-century British literature, creative writing, and a variety of other courses in English literature. Monika completed a B.A. in French and English at the University of Toronto, and M.A. and Ph.D. in English at the University of Western Ontario. She held a postdoctoral fellowship at Cornell University. She graduated from the Humber College School of Writing with distinction in 2007. She has travelled extensively in Europe, Asia, Africa and South America.


I would like to thank the Academy, whatever family members and professional associates are obligatory to rattle off, a higher power to be named later, and, most of all, most importantly, myself.

Let’s face it, my loving spouse, my unctuous agent, God and the director who thinks he’s God did not win this award. They are not standing here on stage before the bright lights, an adoring public and the television audience at home. I am.

I won this award and a metric crapton--scientific term--of free swag I don’t need and could easily afford because of all my hard work, my general awesomeness and my deep-seated humility. No one is more humble and deserving than I am.

When I courageously agreed to do an awards-bait role that could bring me the prestige and respect I so deeply and pathologically crave, I wasn’t sure if I would win a major award, something like an Independent Spirit Award or a weird, marginal award, though hopefully one that at least sounded kind of like something people have heard of. But I bravely decided to pander as shamelessly as possible to the well-established sensibilities of the judges and check off every predictable requirement. Believe me, I suffered for this role. I gained or lost 20 pounds, and made myself look slightly frumpy. I’m just that devoted to my art. I yelled a lot, and alternately looked sad. I used my face to express feelings and stuff. To be honest, there were times when I doubted my craft. There were times when I doubted whether the craft services table would have those little meatballs I like so much.

But I persevered. So now I get to run through an endless list of gratitudes, mostly to myself if I’m being honest, until the band starts playing over me in the subtlest of cues. I am the strongest, most amazing person I have ever met. I am the king of all kings and of the world, and, ah shit, I'm going to be late for work if don't get out of this bathroom.

This story was written by Joseph S. Pete, who once Googled the Iowa Writers' Workshop. True story, believe it or not. This Indiana University graduate is an award-winning journalist, Iraq War veteran and regular guest on his local NPR affiliate. His literary work and humor pieces have appeared in Dogzplot, the Higgs Weldon, McSweeney's Internet Tendency, Defenestration Magazine, Neutrons/Protons, shufPoetry, Pulp Modern, Line of Advance, The Five-Two, and elsewhere. He was named Baconfest Chicago 2016 poet laureate, a feat that Milton chump never accomplished.


This video was created by David Gregory, drawn by somebody else, and written by Ian Saviet. Ian Saviet is currently an undergrad at Seton Hall University, and is still playing Pokemon Go for some reason.

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Laconic Granny - Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0
https://creativecommons.org/licenses/...








Each morning I check the mirror and compare the growth of my facial hair to that of my voluminous, unkempt pubes. A therapist said this morning routine was no good for my self-worth, which had plummeted so low I could only find it by zip-lining from here to Hell. Also, the stress of it all wasn’t going to will the hairs on my face into a full goatee or pork-chop sideburns. I would be lucky, he said, if I could even grow a flavor savor.

There was also the issue of Anthony. We stopped making love three months ago. We still fuck, but never passionately; sometimes, just before Full Frontal with Samantha Bee comes on, we’ll switch on every light in the room and, with our dominant hands dusted orange from Cheetos, we’ll jerk each other off under the covers.

But Anthony loves beards, so I hold out for a faint one to sprout along my jawline, at which point the scruff leaves pink blemishes around my neck like herpes. I scratch them until a green-gray sludge of dead skin builds up under my fingernails, and one night when we go to dinner, I draw blood.

“Please stop,” Anthony says, grabbing my wrist. “You look like a crackhead.”

This hurts. I did crack once after eating too many gin-soaked gummy bears. Surely I look better now than I did then? I tell him, loud enough for everyone in the Olive Garden to hear: “If you’re so ashamed of me, just go!”

He screams,“Why are you being like this?” and sobs grossly into his salad dressing.

A table over, this man going balls-deep in a Tour of Italy pauses mid-bite, a glob of lasagna forming a soul patch under his bottom lip, and flags a waitress. She charges at Anthony and me as if intending to break up a fight between two baboons slap-boxing in her front yard. “Are we having a problem here?” she asks, her hand clutching invisible pearls.

“People sure love interrupting private conversions,” I say. “We’re out of napkins and bread sticks.”

She leaves too quietly, then returns with an Olive Garden middle finger: a single breadstick.

After dinner, I sit on my bathroom floor, rubbing lemon juice and fish oil into my chin. Anthony is rummaging through the apartment, throwing trinkets and clothes and what sounds like books into a suitcase. We do not live together; I’m pretty sure he’s robbing me.

But I don’t care.

Miraculously, I have broken through the itchy stage of beard-growing and, if I squint into the mirror, can see that it has shape, definition. There are even hints of sideburns, which, sure, were never planned, but now that they are here I’m not about to clip them. In fact, I’ll name them: Anthony. Yes, Anthony. And now, no matter what happens after this moment, after I open the bathroom door, and after the hair on my face dares to keep growing, Anthony and I will be closer than ever.

This story was written by Christopher Gonzalez. Christopher is a Cleveland-raised, Brooklyn-based writer and a graduate of Vassar College, where he won the Ann E. Imbrie Prize for Excellence in Fiction Writing. His work has appeared in Mash Stories, The Vignette Review, and The Vassar Review, among other publications. He is an assistant fiction editor for Barrelhouse. You can find more of his writing at https://chris-gonzalez.com, or following him on Twitter @livesinpages.


It was all flat prairie with just a single ridge, and two grizzled prospectors, Tex and Colorado, climbing the ridge on opposite sides and unaware of one another, met unexpectedly at the top.

“Howdy,” Colorado said.

“Any luck?” Tex said. He was heading toward the mountains; Colorado was going the other way.

“Struck ‘er rich,” Colorado said.

“You don’t say,” Tex said, noting the bulging saddlebags on Colorado’s jackass.

“I do say,” Colorado said, and touching the brim of his hat, he moved on.

Two months later, Tex was ensconced in a luxury suite, the entire top floor of the Nevada Hotel. He was in the bathtub, sipping champagne while his new gal, the beautiful, conniving Lola, kneeling alongside the tub, sponged his chest and back.

The door banged open and Colorado entered, gun leveled.

“Got you, you mangy thievin’ varmit,” he said.

“Before’n you does something,” Tex said, “taste this scintillating alcamahal.”

“I am powerful thirsty,” Colorado admitted.

He accepted a long-stemmed glass from Lola.

“Sit,” Tex said.

Colorado sat; Lola jerked suddenly on a velvet sash and the floor opened beneath Colorado and he plunged three floors, down a chute and into a coal bin. By the time he extricated himself, the plush stagecoach carrying Tex and Lola was hightailing out of town.

Two months later, Tex and Lola were riding in a private railroad car, steaming toward San Francisco. Tex was sitting on a walnut throne-chair, smoking a ten-dollar cigar. Lola, wearing a frilly, red-velvet gown fringed with black and with generous cleavage showing, was clipping Tex’s whiskers. The car door opened and in stepped Colorado, gun pointed.

“Now, pard,” Tex said. “No hard feelings.”

“No monkey business this time,” Colorado said.

“Can we talk it over?” Tex said.

“No thankee,” Colorado said.

Lola pulled on a sash and the powerful spring in the floor beneath Colorado’s feet exploded and Colorado was ejected, crashing through the skylight and hurtling a hundred feet into the air, arms and legs flailing, and coming down on a prickly saguaro.

“Damn old cuss never learns,” Tex said.

“They never do,” Lola said. She pulled again on the sash and Tex went up through the skylight and into the air and he landed on a cactus too. He extricated himself, painfully, and after pulling the stingers out of his behind, he walked over to the tracks. The train was chugging away and Colorado was there.

“I knowed your danged gold would bring me nothing but trouble,” Tex said.

“You going after her?” Colorado said.

“I reckon I’ll head for the hills,” Tex said. “Say, I’ve got just enough money in my billfold for a grubsteak for the three of us.”

“Three?” Colorado said.

“Me and you,” Tex said, winking and grinning, “and Lola, soon as she plunks down on the fancy toilet I had put in special for her,” and jerking his arm up and down, as if he were yanking a sash, “and concludes her business.”

This story was written by Hugh Centerville. Hugh is an author at Centerville Books and blogs with his siblings at Hugh Centerville's Blog. His shorter stuff has, or will appear shortly, in Hello Horror, Stinkwaves, and Another Realm.


Here’s me in a grocery store, Sunday morning and I’m in a rush. I tap the shoulder of the lady in front and politely ask, “Uh, ma’am could I please cut in front of you? Seeing as how you have a full, one might even say, overflowing grocery cart.” To her dried apple scowl, I add, “It’s a shame they only have one cashier on duty at 7:30 in the morning and keep five people in line ahead of us. But, could you just give me a break here? I wouldn’t ask if it wasn’t an emergency...of sorts.”

“If you got a emergency,” she crabs, “call 911.”

“Well,” I say, “it’s not like that. Not life and death or anything.”

Hitching her hip, she asks, “So, what kind of emergency is it, that you gotta bother a nice lady for cuts?”

“I’d just as soon not have to get into it. Here. With you.” Looking up I notice the cashier glaring down the conveyor belt…stopped. “And everyone else,” I add.

The lady drops her chin and stares over the top of her bifocals.

“Okay. Okay. If you must know, I’ve taken a pill and it’s about to detonate.”

“Are you mad at me?” the lady asks.

“No,” I go. “I’m not mad at you...yet. Why do you ask?”

The gargoyle paws her cheek. “Your face is red.”

“Ah,” I allow. “That’s from the pill…facial flush.”

“I thought maybe from a laxative,” she says and turns away.

I’m desperate. Decide to try one more time. “Look, could I just cut in front of you? I’ve only got one thing to buy.”

She squinches her mouth at me. I need to give. So, I whisper in her ear, “Viagra. Okay? And it takes two hours to work and I’ve got ten minutes to get back home. And so help me, if you don’t let me take cuts…”

She flinches under my imaginary raised arm and turns to the cashier as if to call for help.

I try to calm her down. “No. No. No need for a fuss, here. You are in no danger of being assaulted...ha, ha,...that way. Believe me.” From the look on her face, I probably shouldn’t have kept going. But sometimes you just can’t stop. “Sorry, I didn’t mean to imply that you couldn’t be the subject...for that kind of...let’s say ha, ha...fantasy...or...or even science fiction.”

Have you ever been diced by a pair of razor gray eyes?

I better apologize. “You’re right. I...I do apologize. Let’s just say it was the medicine talking...a chemical testosterone storm. So, now can I please go ahead of you?”

Now she tilts her head back in a defiant defense of sisterhood. “Does your wife know about it?” she demands.

“Well,” I begin sotto voce, trying to time my words to the boop of the cashier’s barcode reader. “Yeah, every month or so...at my age…”

Grundle glares.

“Oh,” I twig, “you mean right now.”

She nods, slowly.

“Well, if you must know, I left her in bed, sleeping. This was going to be a surprise.”

From the depths of a deep strangled growl, I hear, “Don’t like surprises. My fifth child was a surprise.”

I hasten to assure her that won’t happen to us.

“Call her.”

My jaw drops, “You want me to call her. To warn her or you won’t let me take cuts.” Then my chin raises, “No. No way.”

When she turns her back, I’m on speed dial. “Hello, honey? Well, I’m in the grocery store and there’s this lady who wants to warn you...”

There’s this one thing about Purleen, you should know, she doesn’t slide into spontaneous. To put it nicely, she would never make it in improv. So, here’s the two-legged roadblock leaning on her cart, dialed in and smurking at my side of the conversation:

…Look, I’m here to get some ‘stuff’. We were out of it and I thought I would hustle over...

… ‘Stuff’...You remember...our secret code word for...you know...

…Intimate lubricant?

…KY... KY Jelly, okay?

…What do you mean what for?

…And what does this lady want to warn you about?

…Me. That I’ve got a red face...

…The red face I get when I, you know, take a pill.

…THE pill. Our little blue friend.

…Oh, you’ve never noticed the red face.

…Well, I don’t know how she knew and you don’t. Maybe she doesn’t close her eyes when we...

…Okay. Sorry. You’re right. I shouldn’t be talking about this on a cell phone in the check-out line with the cashier slowing down with every beep. Honey, what’s that noise I hear?

…You’re in the garden spraying the weeds.

…No, No, I’m glad to hear you’re wearing overalls, a mask and rubber gloves.

…You thought you’d get an early start on a hot day. Actually, that’s kind of what I had in mind.

…Lemonade. Lots of ice cold lemonade. Yes dear. I’ll be sure to pick some up.

…Uh-huh. I’m sure I’d like some too.

I turn to the woman behind me who is probably about to draw blood from biting her lips so hard and politely ask, “Ma’am could you hold my place in line?”

This story comes from Joe Novara. A former priest, retired trainer, and writing instructor, Joe and his wife live in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Published works include a memoir, poems, novels, short stories, plays, anthologies and articles. Seven Young Adult novels are accessible through Story Shares. He also maintains a web/blog titled, Writing for Homeschooled Boys. Check out his recent novel, Come Saturday Come Sunday by Cawing Crow Press, available on Amazon.


Good Morning, Glory.

Hi, vivacious Violet.

Did you hear Mary has a gold ring on her wedding finger?

Is it from that Sweet William?

He’s wearing a Bachelor’s Button.

I believe so. What do you think her Poppy will say?

We’ll have to ast ‘er.

How about Chris Ann’ the Mum?

Does Fern know?

Yes, she says Blue Bells will ring oe’r the Lilies in the Valley.

Jack in the Pulpit will perform the ceremony.

Then, their Tulips will kiss.



Have you heard about that Gypsy Ophilis?

Why, yes, and her Texas Blue Bonnet.

She was covered with a Blanket Flower when she saw a Shooting Star.

She used some Scarlet Sage to tame a Snap Dragon.

You should have seen Johnny Jump Up.

He ran off using his Stiff Golden Rod.

That boy is Impatiens, for sure.

That, I’ll Forget Me Not.

He’s such a Pansy.

Did you hear that Holly-Hocked her Dutchman’s Breeches?

She’d cleaned off her Money Tree by Four O’clock.

Have you smelled her Baby’s Breath?

She’s been feeding Daisy Mae some Milkweed made with Carnation Instant Breakfast.



She’s a Peon’y, just ask Rose.

And a Narcissus.

She’d make a Dandy Lion. Have you seen the Iris in her Baby Blue Eyes?

She’s not a Black-eyed Susan.

Have you Spied Her Plant?

It’s a Monkey Flower.

St. John has a Wart.

In the light of a Blazing Star, I saw his Bird’s Foot and Bird’s Eyes.

And I saw him use an Indian Paint Brush to color a Mexican Hat.

Yes, and he sat right by his Fire Weed to knit his Fox Gloves.

It takes all kinds doesn’t it?

Sure does. I gotta go. Don’t be a Touch Me Not.


This story was written by Debbie Johnson, who lives in Nevada, Iowa with a very special beagle. She was disabled in a car/semi accident in 2004. She writes as fun, therapy, and to advocate for the disabled. She enjoys writing poetry, especially the Japanese forms, as well as some fiction and non-fiction. She has been published in numerous literary journals and anthologies. She has written three books, ‘The Disability Experience’ and ‘The Disability Experience II’ and ‘Debbie’s Friends’. Her website, blog, and guest blog can be found at www.thedisabilityexperience.vpweb.com.


I was my dear mother’s only child, and long ago she used to tell me that, someday, I would meet Jesus Christ. Naturally, I believed her. I knew, beyond a doubt, that I was destined to meet the Son of God.

Well, last Wednesday afternoon, the tenth of July, at 8:37 PM, it finally happened.

You may find this farfetched. But I testify: I was setting out along the Detroit riverfront to pass out leaflets proclaiming God’s Word to the unbelievers, which is my usual evening work, and there He was, sitting right on the granite steps of Hart Plaza.

What does the Son of God look like? Perhaps you have a preconceived image of Him. A white man in a white robe with flowing brown hair? Well, I won’t judge you, because that’s what I thought too. But I’m here to tell you that the Lord most emphatically does not look like that.

The physical form of the Lamb of God, as He appeared to me last Wednesday, was that of an enormously fat African-American gentleman wearing a stained white T-shirt, baggy green corduroys, and dirty brown loafers on His Sacred (and sizable) Feet. When I say fat, I mean truly obese. I wouldn’t think of committing the sacrilege of asking Jesus His weight, but it was probably around four hundred pounds. He was simply…enormous. He wore His Holy Hair in long dreadlocks that draped over His Sanctified Girth. He was eating a hot dog with ketchup and mustard, and some of the Blessed Condiments had spilled down onto His Glorious T-shirt in long red and yellow blobs. He wore headphones attached to an iPod, and the Good Shepherd was “getting his groove on,” as the young people like to say. Yes, indeedy, He was nodding along as He chewed His Exalted Frankfurter, and I could hear the low bass tones of His Most Sacrosanct Music from where I stood. I believe Jesus was listening to what the young folks call “hip-hop.” It isn’t my cup of tea, but who am I to second-guess God’s Only Begotten Son?

How did I know this was the Almighty Himself? As I stood staring at His Holy Form, He turned and looked directly at me. He didn’t miss a beat – He just kept nodding along with His Music, and looked directly into my eyes. He gave me no signal, but I didn’t need one. I knew my Savior! Then he turned the Blessed Head back to watching the freighters on the river.

What did I do then? I prostrated myself on the ground before Him! I gave my life over to Him! I begged Him to forgive my sins! I even kissed the Blessed Feet!

My ecstasy was so great that it continues even now, in this small white room, in this hospital, surrounded by heathen unbelievers. I shall minister to them in the Name of Jesus Christ!

My dear mother used to tell me that, someday, I would meet our Lord and Savior. She was right. I met Jesus on the steps of Hart Plaza last Wednesday. I am blessed, and Satan hath no power over me!

This story was written by Brian Kirchner. He's 46 years old, married with three kids, and lives in Royal Oak, Michigan (near Detroit). He teaches Earth Science at a local community college and have a PhD in Geology. He's loved writing since childhood. A short story of his will be published soon in the online magazine "Inklette", and he recently won 9th place in a Writer's Digest international poetry competition.


Sarah looked up from her cereal, a soggy mess of alphabet shapes, and gazed out of the kitchen window. In the neighboring yard a man, dressed in a leather flak jacket, with goggles on his head, was kicking a wooden structure. It had a bowl attached to the end.

“Mommy?” Sarah asked. “What’s Mr. Jacobson doing?”

Mrs. Hampton, her elbows deep in dirty water, scraped a petrified nugget of ravioli from a dish and followed her daughter’s gaze.

“Oh he’s just building a catapult again, sweetie.”

“A cata-what?”

“It’s like a big stick that throws things.”

Sarah raised an eyebrow and glanced back at her cereal. The letters swirled around. The ones in the center of the bowl spelled “Oops.” Sarah giggled. Outside, Mr. Jacobson appeared to have gotten caught in the spring of his contraption. His belt had snagged it. In a fury, he rocked back and forth, trying to free himself. He looked like a hunchback trying to start a lawnmower.

“What does he want to throw, mommy?”

“I don’t know, dear. I know he isn’t happy about the baseball field that the city built below the hill. He says it creates noise.”

“So he wants to throw something at it?”

Mrs. Hampton sighed and watched Mr. Jacobson continue to flail around. She thought briefly of when he tried this last year and had managed to launch himself face first into his marble bird bath, and how his body had hung limply around it. She was sure he had killed himself.

“I think so, sweetie.”

“So I should stay in here?”

“I would, at least for now.”

“Should we call the po-weece?”

Mrs. Hampton eyed the telephone. She didn’t quite know if she wanted Mr. Jacobson to get arrested or break his neck, or both. She faked an expression of seriousness. “Oh I think we had better just leave Mr. Jacobson to himself.”

Sarah nodded in affirmation and firmly planted her spoon upright. “It’s none of our bibnus, right mommy?”

“That’s right.”

Mrs. Hampton continued to chisel wasted chunks of food off the dishes. Out of the corner of her eye, she noticed that Mr. Jacobson had freed himself, and was busy stuffing small, wrapped packages into the bowl on the end of the catapult. He piled them in, one after another. She was certain that they were explosives. God, she thought. The old loon was going to launch a bomb into the field.

Then the bomb, still in the bowl, went boom. Sarah and her mother jumped and beheld Mr. Jacobson, running around in circles. His jacket was in flames. A distant observer might have thought that someone was tap dancing, without shoes, on shards of glass. In an instant, Mrs. Jacobson’s wife was on the scene, blasting him with a fire extinguisher. He fell to the ground and flopped. Mrs. Jacobson threw the extinguisher on the ground and went back inside.

“Mommy, should we call the---“

“No dear. It’s none of our business.”

This story comes from N.D. Coley, who currently serves as an instructor of English composition at the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg, Community College of Allegheny County, and the University of Phoenix. His fiction has appeared in the Indiana Voice Journal. In his spare time, he laments the human condition, reads satire and dark, depressing literature, plays with his son, irritates is wife, and tries to keep a smile on his face.

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