#ThursThreads Week 356 : They Do Everything Together

Once a week, at least, we got together, and went to eat somewhere. That night, the girls wanted seafood, so we went to that restaurant on the pier. You can’t get seafood much fresher than that.

As always, one of the girls said, “Pit stop.” And they both headed to the restroom. Bob and I sat at the table, looking at the ocean of shrimp shells collected in the bucket in its middle.

“Why do they always go together?”

I’m sure Bob saw my look of terror, “Don’t ever ask them that!” It was a mistake I’d made. I’d asked Ginny, and she’d let me have it big time.

“But, they do everything together. Haven’t you noticed?”

“Yeah, I’ve noticed.” My brain was desperately trying to come up with a way to explain to Bob why they did everything together. “Well.” I looked in the direction they’d headed, “Did you watch them walk off?”

He nodded.

“Do you think other guys watched them?”

“Other guys?”

“Yeah. You know. Like…” I changed topic, and pointed at one of the waitresses, “Damn. Check out the buns on her.”

Bob did.

“What you just did?” I nodded, “is why they do everything together.”

He looked confused.

“Bob. They get looked at by every guy. All the guys. Every day. Forever.”

I saw the cartoon light bulb over his head light up, “Woah.”

“Yeah, Bob. There’s safety in numbers.”

Neither of us said another word until the girls got back.

246 Words

It’s Week 356 of #ThursThreads, hosted by Siobhan Muir. Please go read all the entries in this week’s #ThursThreads. They are always fun to read. And there are some great writers who show up weekly.


Miranda Kate’s Mid-Week Challenge : 2019/03/24

Perhaps, someday, someone will find this, my diary. Perhaps. I suppose the only reason I have for writing the words I have is my inability to let go of hope.

The truth is, I’m a dead man. I will die, in silence, locked in this room that doesn’t exist. One of many such rooms on this hallway that lies beneath the basement of God’s church. The only glimpse I have of the outside world being through the keyhole in the wall, placed there when I was sealed in this, my ten foot by ten foot tomb.

No food. No water. Nothing. Save the ability to look out into the hallway, lined with identical tombs, each with its own keyhole. It seems the church can starve me to death, and make me die of thirst, but can’t suffocate me in an airtight room.

I don’t know how long the hallway is, or if it is the only hallway, or one of many hallways. I do know, this is where enemies of God end up. Here. In a white brick room. With only an artificial light, embedded in the ceiling, that never turns off. Left here, sealed inside, to die for my crimes against the Church.

I don’t even know what crimes I have committed.

Perhaps independent thought. Thinking for myself, instead of doing what the church demanded. Perhaps that is how I wound up here.

Perhaps independent action. Giving my bagged lunch to one of the natives. Someone who does not believe in God. A heathen. Instead of letting them starve.

Perhaps because I learned to read, and write, and thus became able to read the words of the sacred scriptures on my own, without a monk, or priest having to read them to me.

Perhaps I will never know. Other than what I was told. “You have violated the directives of God, and His Church, and you have refused to acknowledge your sins, and beg for His forgiveness, or make the required sacrifices to pay for your sins, according to God’s laws.”

So, here I am. On this hallway. In a room that doesn’t exist. In a hallway that doesn’t exist. Were all such heathens as myself end up. I have examined the walls of this place. Stone. Cold, hard stone. No seams of any kind. As if the room was carved into a solid block of stone. Once it had a door. I know this, they pushed me through that door, into this place. Then, they sealed me in. A single piece of stone, with a keyhole carved into it.

I remember the brilliance of the laser beams that heated the door, and the stone of the cell, until they glowed, too bright to bear to look at. Melting the stone of each, turning it into a solid joint. Sealed. Forever.

I remember the words of the Priest who directed the Monks that sealed me in this room, “May the light of God seal this heathen inside his final home, leaving no way to escape.”

There are no days here. No nights. No time. Here, there is only waiting, and wondering, “Does it hurt to die of thirst? Does it hurt to starve to death? Does it hurt as my body slowly consumes itself trying to keep me alive?”

I suppose, in this place, in this tomb, I will learn the answers to such questions soon enough.

568 Words

It’s week 99 of Miranda Kate‘s Mid-Week Challenge. You can read about Miranda’s small fiction challenge here. Please, go read Miranda’s short tale this week, and any others that showed up. The tales are always little works of art, crafted with words, meant to be shared, and enjoyed.


ME Is Real.

The following is lifted, word for word, from Stonebird. I place these words here because.

  • I have a dear friend who endures this endless torture every day.
  • I have to deal with people who tell me this isn’t a real thing.
  • I have to deal with people who tell me these are lazy people who are faking it

ME (Myalgic Encephalomyelitis). This illness kills people. You need to know what it is. The people who live with this are the strongest I’ve ever known.

Please read this, and educate yourself. Please visit Stonebird, and learn more.

The Stonebird Definition of Severe ME :

  • Severe ME is a hellish experience that you live and endure without treatment, cure or respect .
  • Severe ME is not knowing how to cope from minute to minute, moment to moment.
  • Severe ME is being tormented by people doing ordinary things.
  • Severe ME is being inhibited by paralysis.
  • Severe ME is being totally ill, all the time.
  • Severe ME is being unable to read.
  • Severe ME is being unable to hold anything.
  • Severe ME is falling over regularly.
  • Severe ME is your mind not working.
  • Severe ME is being unable to speak on the phone.
  • Severe ME is finding that going to bed makes you feel even more ill.
  • Severe ME is discovering that there is no possibility of rest, ever.
  • Severe ME is being unable to see anybody because they make you more ill, because you are so hypersensitive.
  • Severe ME is not knowing what to eat that won’t hurt you.
  • Severe ME is being neglected by the Health Service.
  • Severe ME is having to regularly have to prove you are ill, just to get your benefits.
  • Severe ME is being always in constant pain.
  • Severe ME is finding that everything you try to do hurts you on some level somewhere.
  • Severe ME is feeling dizzy and disorientated most of the time.
  • Severe ME is spending your life predominantly sitting in a chair unable to move or function , or in bed, paralysed.
  • Severe ME is being not properly medically tested.
  • Severe ME is being unable to find any clothes that don’t itch you.
  • Severe ME is being unable to go to the shops to buy clothes.
  • Severe ME is finding that any noise irritates you to distraction.
  • Severe ME means that your mind lives in a sea of fog and emptiness.
  • Severe ME is finding that everything normal is out of reach.
  • Severe ME is being unable to manage without help, all day long.
  • Severe ME is having no energy.
  • Severe ME is living in poverty.
  • Severe ME is being unable to decorate because you are chemically sensitive and the paint would make you more ill.
  • Severe ME is being unable to tidy away the things on your desk or sort anything out because it’s too complex functionally for you to do.
  • Severe ME is being unable to carry things.
  • Severe ME is finding that everything in your world is hurting you , both inside and outside you.
  • Severe ME is being unable to travel without torment.
  • Severe ME is finding that motion makes you ill.
  • Severe ME is having no real choices , apart from not to despair.
  • Severe ME is a torture and a nightmare.
  • Severe ME is constantly feeling as if you are screaming with agony inside.
  • Severe ME is being more sick than an AIDS patient two months before death.
  • Severe ME is noticing that people with terminal cancer have a better quality of life than you, until they die.
  • Severe ME is being sick of not being understood.
  • Severe ME is being sick of the denial of your reality.
  • Severe ME is weeping everyday with the sheer physical pain of your life.
  • Severe ME is having all the things you love taken away from you.
  • Severe ME is being unable to bear being touched because of the pain and irritation that it causes.
  • Severe ME is your body going dead and numb regularly, awake and asleep.
  • Severe ME is having skin that crawls with intolerable sensations.
  • Severe ME is being cognitively disabled.
  • Severe ME is finding that anything you do will lead to worsening pain, paralysis and numbness.
  • Severe ME is feeling like you are dying.
  • Severe ME is having your illness misrepresented and negated by a powerful psychiatric lobby that denies the physical reality of your neurological disease.
  • Severe ME is finding that there is no one with any power or authority doing anything to change it.
  • Severe ME is being enraged by the untruths that exist about ME , that are accepted by professionals and society.
  • Severe ME is finding that your hypersensitivity is increasing.
  • Severe ME is being persecuted because you are disabled and ill.
  • Severe ME is having to buy own nutritional medicine and organic products; you cannot live cheaply as a disabled person.
  • Severe ME is never going on holiday
  • Severe ME is never going to social or family events.
  • Severe ME is having to fight for everything that you should be entitled to.
  • Severe ME is a desperate thirst that is unquenched.
  • Severe ME is an extreme head ache that goes on and on, throbbing unceasingly, day after day, and all night without relent.
  • Severe ME is where thinking is so painful you can’t do it.
  • Severe ME is going to sleep and waking up worse.
  • Severe ME is having no energy to start with.
  • Severe ME is struggling to breathe.
  • Severe ME is struggling to eat because chewing is exhausting and swallowing is dangerous.
  • Severe ME is struggling to live.
  • Severe ME is numb eyeballs and itchy, burning eye pain and scratchy dry eyes.
  • Severe ME is not being able to read because the letters are dancing in and out and up and down and there seems to be two of everything.
  • Severe ME is where words lose their meaning and comprehension disappears and is replaced by tormenting pain in your head and worsening pain in your body instead.
  • Severe ME is emptiness in your mind where colour and thought once existed.
  • Severe ME is sleeping all morning and awake all night.
  • Severe ME is needing the toilet again and again.
  • Severe ME is a bizarre world where nothing seems as it is and every reaction is opposite to what you would expect.
  • Severe ME is where no one tells you what is going on in your body, to make sense of all the symptoms .
  • Severe ME is where you have to work it all out for yourself.


Want to understand how the USA elected Donald Trump as its President? This might help you understand.

Here’s the first 30 Popular TV shows in the Science Category of HULU.

1. Naked And Afraid.
2. Mythbusters.
3. Life Below Zero.
4. How It’s Made.
5. Insane Pools: Off The Deep End.
6. Puppies vs The World.
7. River Monsters.
8. Tanked.
9. Dr. K’s Exotic Animal ER.
10. Naked And Afraid XL.
11. Dual Survival.
12. Wicked Tuna.
13. Sid The Science Kid.
14. When Sharks Attack.
15. The Last Alaskans.
16. Dog Whisperer.
17. Drain The Oceans.
18. Man vs Wild.
19. Crime 360.
20. The New Detectives.
21. Puppy Bowl.
22. What On Earth?
23. Survivorman.
24. Dr. Oakley, Yukon Vet.
25. Cities Of The Underworld.
26. Vets Saving Pets.
27. Yukon Men.
28. Live Free Or Die.
29. Primal Survivor.
30. My Big Fat Pet Makeover.

And here’s the only 4 Popular Movies from the Science Category on HULU.

1. 27 Alien Encounters.
2. Afterlife.
3. UFO Chronicles: Cosmic Watergate.
4. UFO Chronicles: The Black Programs.

I think that says more than enough all by itself, don’t you?


To Those Who May Be Concerned

This past week, I deactivated my Facebook account. This is something I’ve been considering since 2015, when it became apparent to me that Donald Trump would be the Republican Candidate for President of the United States (Something I knew in Spring of 2015, months before the Republican Convention).

I understand there are people who wish I had not deactivated that account. I understand there are people who can’t understand why I deactivated that account. And I understand most people, being human, and following the normal patterns of social behavior, will shrug, and continue on as if nothing has changed. I also understand there are a few who will think, “Finally. That idiot shut the fuck up.”

I am a clinically certified Autistic. I live on the Autism Spectrum. Where most people can ignore things around them, and in fact, seem to be quite talented at seeing only that which they wish to see, that is an ability that I do not have.

If it is there, I see it. If it is there, I’m aware of it, even if I don’t want to be.

Since 2015, social media has exploded with every topic of interest to everyone, and to anyone. There’s politics, health care, education, ethics, women’s rights, black people’s rights, male privilege, white male privilege, the list is virtually endless.

And I can’t shut it out.

So, I’ve deactivated my facebook account, and that’s shut a sizable chunk of it out. A chunk I’m no longer receiving endless exposure to.

At the same time, I have not shut down on Twitter. Despite the face that Twitter has endless discussions of the same topics.

This is because Twitter allows me the ability to do the same thing as I have done with Facebook, without having to close my account. Twitter lets me mute words. Any word I mute, if that word shows in a post from anyone, anywhere, that post does not show up on my Twitter feed.

You may call me a snowflake all you wish. You may tell me I’m exercising my white male privilege. You may tell me I’m part of the problem, because I refuse to discuss the problem.

I know this truth. I’m brutally aware of these topics. I live with them each day. I don’t need others beating me relentlessly over the head with them.

What follows is the list of words I have currently muted on Twitter. I fully expect this list to grow every few weeks, as topics end up flooding Twitter with endless discussions I lack the ability to ignore. When that happens, I have to enlist the assistance of Twitter to help me cope with the problem, and help me manage how much exposure I get to such topics.

It’s a tool. I intend to keep using it. If Facebook had a similar tool, I’d use it there. Facebook doesn’t. So, I’ve shut down on Facebook, to achieve the same effect I have achieved on Twitter with muted words.

If the words in this list piss you off, you are welcome to stop following me, block me, whatever you need to do to keep your sanity.


white privilege
white men
gender equality
sexual assault
the president
toxic soup
press conference
25th Amendment
FOX News
Green Party
Trump nodded
Trump commented
Trump committed
President Trump
Trump brushes
Trump responds
Trump says
Trump is
Trump lied
Trump said
Donald Trump
acceptable behaviour
acceptable behavior

#ThursThreads Week 353 : What The Heck Does That Even Mean?

I wasn’t supposed to laugh, but I couldn’t help it. “You know what’s wrong with it, right?”

He looked at me, then looked at the laptop computer, then looked at me again. “The wrong kind of RAM is in it.”

There I was, laughing again, “Nope. Nope. Nope.” I grabbed my toolkit, and proceeded to pull the bottom case off, so we could get to the motherboard, and the RAM. “I’ll have to show you, ‘cause it doesn’t make sense any other way.”

I opened the case, and pulled both sticks of memory out. “See? 2 sticks. It doesn’t work. Right?”


I put one stick in, and powered it up. It ran without problems. “That’s good.” Then, I swapped the sticks. It ran fine again. Then, I tried each stick in the second slot. It ran fine. “Tell me what’s wrong?”

He scratched his chin, “I don’t get it. It should work. Both sticks work. Boths slots work.”

“But not at the same time. Right?” I kept waiting for an answer.

All he said was “What the heck does that even mean?”

“It means the machine needs a BIOS update. That will fix it.” I ran the computer with one stick of memory, downloaded, and installed the BIOS update for the computer. Then, I shut it down, put both memory sticks in, and powered it up. It ran normally. No problems.

And the new guy looked at me and repeated himself, “What the heck does that even mean?”

248 Words

Happy Valentine’s Day. It’s Week 353 of #ThursThreads, hosted by Siobhan Muir. Please go read all the entries in this week’s #ThursThreads. They are always fun to read. And there are some great writers who show up weekly.

Miranda Kate’s Mid-Week Challenge : 2019/03/03

It started when I was little. Just a boy, a long way from the grown up I am now. It was a skill, and like any skill, I had to develop it, practice it, use it, to become better at it. It’s not like I planned to be who I was. It’s simply how things were. I was born to do this. I excelled at it. Much like someone excels in art, or writing. The practice merely refines and perfects the skill.

I started with goldfish. I knew, goldfish were cheap, and plentiful, and no one would notice if I practiced with them. The only one who did notice was the pet store owner. “What are you doing with the goldfish? You buy so many of them.”

“I’m using them as feeder fish for my piranha.”

He nodded, and never asked any more questions, although he did help me pick out goldfish that would make the tastiest, and healthiest meals for the piranha I never had.

What was I doing with the goldfish?

Practicing my sills. Learning. Refining.

I have a stack of grade school composition books filled with notes, and diagrams, all collected as I practiced with the goldfish.

That last training session with goldfish started one afternoon in the month of May. I’d completed all my homework, though I detested it, because completing it set me free from my parents, and their house. I was able to get outside, and enjoy myself, so long as I took my phone with me, and was able to answer when called. And so long as I was home by sunset, or within thirty minutes of sunset.

I had a plan, carefully thought out, and worked through. It had taken several days but I’d found a glass jug, not too big, maybe half a gallon of water would fit in it. Clear glass. I wanted clear so I could see everything that was inside the jug. I needed to see everything inside, to record it, and learn about it.

I’d hidden the jug behind the back yard fence, where no one would see it, behind a row of flowers my mother had insisted on planting back there. The next day, I’d carried the jug to the giant mud puddle they’d dug up when they made the houses in the neighborhood. That’s what it was, really. A giant hole they dug in the ground that slowly filled up with rain water. Everyone insisted on calling it a man-made lake. It wasn’t a lake. It was just a mud puddle. I filled the jug with water. I used an old sock as a filter, to block the sand and mud floating in the water, so it didn’t get into the jug. Filling the jug took time. I had to be careful, and sometimes, I had to start over. I had to get the water clear, so I could observe the goldfish better.

I hid the filled jug where I’d hid it when it was empty. And I waited for Saturday, when I had the entire day to play. Play. Ah, if only my parents had known. I never played. Instead, I studied, and practiced, and grew my skill.

That Saturday I’d taken my allowance, and told my parents I was going to buy soda and chocolate bars, like always. Then, I went to the pet shop, and picked out two goldfish. I often worried someone would see me as I took the goldfish to the mud puddle. It wasn’t easy to hide them. I usually carried a shopping bag, like for buying groceries. It fit well with my declaration I was buying soda and chocolate.

I’d picked up the jug along the way. By the edge of the water, I built a little hill, with a shallow slope. One I could slowly add to. First, I placed the goldfish in the jar, and let them become happy, and content, in their new home, with all the new scenery. They always swam around the jug, and explored their surroundings.

After I was content they were happy, I took the jug, and placed it on the slope I’d made, with the top toward the lake, so the water would begin to drain out. It would have been simple to toss the goldfish into the lake, and be done with them. But, it wouldn’t have been as interesting, and I would have learned nothing.

Instead, I gradually drained the water from the jug, and watched the goldfish react as their world became smaller, and smaller. I wondered, frequently, if goldfish felt anything. If they were frightened. Or maybe panicked. As they realized what was happening to them. As they realized they had no control. Perhaps they felt nothing, or even thought nothing. After all. They were only goldfish.

Eventually, the water was drained away. And I watched the fish flap around the empty jug until they became motionless. Then, I always emptied the remains into the puddle. It was murky, and no one would ever find the goldfish.

I did this many times, until one day, I was convinced the goldfish could teach me nothing more. And it was time to find something better to practice my skills with. Perhaps mice, I thought. That did seem like a logical step up from goldfish.

I sometimes wish I could tell you how many irritating little children I’ve practiced my skills with. But I honestly don’t know. If you hadn’t interfered, I would have solved the problem of the irritating little children. I was about to start practicing my skills on those who would be mothers.

Why using the skills I was blessed with in this life is wrong, I will never understand.

954 Words (Certainly more than 750)

It’s week 96 of Miranda Kate‘s Mid-Week Challenge. I had to write a second story for the prompt this week. You can read about Miranda’s small fiction challenge here. Please, go read Miranda’s short tale this week, and any others that showed up. The tales are always little works of art, crafted with words, meant to be shared, and enjoyed.