Saturday, 7 September 2013

To Control the Past

I’ve come to the conclusion that existential crises, tend to happen to me only when I want to control time. When I want to go further into the future, or more often, when I want to control the past.
I’ve also realized that I go through existential crises whenever in a time of large change, specifically right now, is a change that leads to uncertainty in every aspect of my life.
Change makes me want to control time, and my inability to do so, makes me suffer a pretty severe existential crisis.
Feels better writing it down, since that’s what I should always be doing, more creatively I admit, but hey, it’s been a long couple of months for me.
The problem that I get when I have an existential crisis, and feel a need to control time, is that I keep on going further and further back into my life, and then I take a metaphorical tire iron to myself, beating the shit out of me for every mistake, past up opportunity, lie, theft, or broken heart(mine included) that I’ve left behind.
I know that I shouldn’t do that. I’ve never actually done anything all that bad. I have some minor consequences in my life that make it harder for me to think that I can accomplish the goals that I have set for myself in my life. I’m aware that I am not alone in this, the trick isn’t to overcome it, I think that that comes later. In a sense, I wish to embrace it, to allow my past to always be a part of me now, accept it, and then see if with that acceptance, I can use my past as a tool to overcome that which is blocking me. And I believe the thing that is blocking me, is fear of the uncertain future that lays ahead.
My mind uses the past on me, as a cheap justification for that fear.
I can’t be with people that I once loved. I can’t live where I once lived. I can live where I live now, I can do what I need to do for myself.
I’m going to hurt people along the way. At points I may lie, I may cheat, I may steal. I don’t know. I’m capable of all things human.
Because that’s what I am.
Human.

Saturday, 20 July 2013

Tickets to the Rain

There was a rain, it was falling all over the city. And someone was selling tickets to it. And there was a line up that stretched for blocks, in the rain, for people to buy tickets.

People were waiting in line, patiently miserable as they were soaked up in the rain, because there was a sign all along the line that said in big, bold letters:

NO UMBRELLAS

So, in the line, that was in the rain, there was not one umbrella. And people waited for hours, for tickets to the rain.

Joel had been waiting for two and a half hours in the rain, and he was only about ten or fifteen minutes before he could buy his ticket. He was actually going to buy about three or four and go through the line and scalp the tickets for people that did not want to wait as long as he had for tickets to the rain.

He also could not wait to receive his own ticket to the rain. He was dreaming about it for the past month, as he knew most people had been. He knew that the line would be immense and he got up especially early to buy his ticket. But it seemed as if most of the city was thinking the exact same thing that he was. And he had arrived too late, and the line, had already formed a long expansive line, full of soaked sleeping bags, and soaked pillows. Because there was a giant sign that said in big, bold letters:

NO TENTS, NO TARPS

Underneath each sign, there was a warning, in smaller lettering that said:

Any violators will not be sold a ticket.

Conversation in the line was limited, in the downpour, to whispers about how much this was a cold, godawful rain. How they were miserable because of the rain, and how they couldn't wait to get their ticket to it. Usually it would be one person saying this, and then all those in ear shot would nod up and down in agreement.

Joel agreed with them, he was on of the ones that nodded his head up and down in agreement, he was never one of the ones to start a whisper. He was never one of the ones to start anything.

Joel was a small man, in stature, in health, in self-respect. He was small. He had a cough that never went away, and despite being so short, he still had a hunch that made him even smaller. He knew that he should stand tall, but after the forty years of hunching down, he would have to go see a specialist to straighten his back. He couldn't afford a specialist.

He couldn't afford one of those specialists because his self-respect was so small. And in order to keep it small, he would drink a lot of alcohol. He would drink it at bars to spend more money, and he would drink in bars so that people would have the opportunity to put him down. Which was easy, since in every way he was already so low to the ground.

That's why he was two and half hours late that morning for the line. He wanted to get up exactly two and half hours earlier, so that he could be one of the first in line.

If only I hadn't gotten drunk, I could have been here two and half hours earlier, and I wouldn't have had to wait so long in line!

For the entire time that he waited in line, that's all that he could think. That and how much he couldn't wait to get his ticket. He also couldn't wait to buy two or three, to make a couple extra bucks. He needed some money, he had spent too much at the bar last night, and now no longer had enough money to buy cigarettes. His hunch was extravagantly drooping in the rain because of all of this.

A couple of other people had been through the line in the past little bit, scalping tickets to people, for an extra fifty bucks. He figured that when he got his, he would only charge forty. That way people would not only buy them, but other people would hear that he was charging less, and think well of him for doing so.

He could see the booth now. A small table set up on the street, the police officers were guarding the man behind the table. He had a hat on, and a bright white tuxedo on. He was tanned and had a bright white smile that he gave to everyone who was buying tickets from him. He wasn't wet at all, because the table had a tarp over it.

Finally, Joel arrived to the front of the line. The police officers asked him for his identification, and he gave it them. Then they patted him down and searched his bag. They were stern and rude with him. They asked him what he was doing with a lighter, and when he responded by saying that he smoked. They asked him for his cigarettes, and when he didn't have any. They took his lighter from him.

Once Joel was there, the man in the hat and tuxedo extended his hand dramatically to him.

“Good day sir, in fact, great day! Sir. What is your name?” The bright white smile, hurt Joel's eyes as if it he were looking directly at the sun.

“Joel.” He mumbled.

“How many tickets Mister?”

“Three?”

“Three? But they're only one of you!” He eyed him with a sarcastic expression.

“My...sister, and her daughter, didn't want to wait in line.”

“Are they sick?”

“Yes?” He said as if it were a question, it was a long and high pitched tone.

“Well, okay then. Six hundred dollars then Mister.”

“Okay” And he gave the man six hundred dollars.

“What? No tip?” The man burst out laughing. Handing him three envelopes.

“Um”
“Next!” Exclaimed the man.

Joel was rushed off back into the rain. He was exceedingly happy. He ran to the back of the line, and immediately sold two of his tickets. Those around him thought kind things about the little man that didn't charge as much as he could have.

As Joel was walking in the rain, he had a small skip in his step. He pulled out the envelope and looked at his ticket, it had large bold printing:

ONE TICKET TO ENJOY THE RAIN

And he did.






Tuesday, 28 May 2013

I DID IT! www.twentyfourthousandwords.blogspot.com

You know what I did? I wrote 24 completely unique stories, all at least 1000 words in 24 hours!

I didn't pre write anything, I had no idea what I was going to write until I was writing it, and I finished with 4 minutes to spare!

Check it out at www.twentyfourthousandwords.blogspot.com


Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Apology, and Announcement

 I've been away for a while. I don't really know why, I don't have an answer to why I stopped for a bit, other than I did. And that's that. And I'm sorry if you were reading each one of my stories each day faithfully. I hope I don't have too many nameless, faceless readers in my life, that get a lot from these stories. I also hope that I do. Because, well, I want to be famous as a writer. Not overtly famous. I want to make enough money each year to get by, solely from writing. If you happen to read these and want me to write for you. Feel free to hire me. I am available, as it were.

There is a reason that I write this stuff, I love stories, I like to dig through experience and find things worth sharing, stories that have subtle and obvious metaphor, to allow for you to connect to. Because, in a sense, I connect to them as I write them. I like that I can connect to you, even if there is just one or two of you out there. I thank you, no matter what we are connected, no matter what we are friends.

I have a long road ahead of me, trying to figure out a story that has legs enough to complete a novel. Finding the time and the drive to do so as well. I hope that you are patient and faithful with me. I hope that you enjoy what I have to share.

I will be do something extreme in the next couple of days. Take it as my apology to any of my followers. I know that it is an apology for letting myself down.

I'm going to write twenty four, two page short stories, single spaced. In twenty four hours. And I'm going to film it. And then I'm going to condense that footage into a little documentary for all to see on the internet. Tell your friends. And here are the rules that I will be following.

No one can help me write, or edit them.

If I post one that doesn't quite fit the two page marker, it doesn't count. More specifically, that's one thousand words as a minimum. For each story.

If I post one that exceeds the two pages. Good for me. Still counts.

I am not allowed to write anything in advance. To be honest it will be impossible not to have one or two ideas that are sitting in my head. But they will not be on paper or document in advance, and I don't have even near to twenty four, so give me a break on that one. This will be verified by the filming and that I have friends that will be watching me very closely the whole time.

I will start at 8am on Monday, June 27th 2013. And I have until Tuesday, June 28th 2013.

This challenge is aptly named. Twenty Four Thousand.

Thank you for your time.

S.R. Conley

Sunday, 28 April 2013

Take Care of This Tale

Take care of my tale for me. I shan't be able to tell it past this point. I am a lost man, and I am running out of the time to care for it.

I lived a full life, a life that can be summed up in a page is a full life to some, and it is a full life to me. I have no wisdom, for I am not wise. Wisdom was not a path that I searched for or took. I was frivolous in my activities, and as such, most of them are not worth recounting. I would not waste my time in remembering them, nor would I waste yours in forcing you to take what precious time you have, in listening.

When I was a young boy, I imagined quite a bit, I would play games of great imagination. My father was going to grow a garden and bought a giant pile of soil and put it in our front driveway. For weeks as the landscaping to prepare for the dirt to be laid out into a garden. The mound simply sat there. To a child of five years old. That pile was a mountain. It is with a fond memory that I share what we did with this pile of dirt. I had a plastic sword, and many a toy gun. All of which I buried in the pile. And a large group of us children would start at the other end of the street and run towards it and dig for our weapons, and then we would have a great battle.

The sword would be at the top. The sword was the most powerful weapon of them all. The child who had the sword was immune to all other weapons except for a knife that was buried in the pile as well. Inevitably, most times, the child with the sword would win. On occasion, however, the child with the knife, would perhaps have the skill to overcome the sword and strike down the child with the most powerful weapon. In that case, the child with the knife would have both weapons, and would become the ruler of that round of play. On a tiny mound of dirt, five year old children earned glory.

All my life I have spent each day, experiencing all that I could to experience. I have had many lovers, and spent many a night downing fine wines and ales from all over the world. I have learned languages and ate all types of meals designed by each and all culture of mankind. I have played all sport, board game, video game that was available to be played.

My whole life, I treated as if it was a game.

But now, I as tell this tale of my adventures, all I can think of is how amazing it would be to spend what remains of my measly savings on a pile of dirt.

Save, I don't think I have any friends to play with.