The Bar That Hates Money

My buddy’s wedding is coming up.  As his best man, it is my duty to plan his bachelor party.

6b156-funny-dog-pictures-bachelor-partyI had to go through this process last summer when I was my other friend’s best man, so I know the drill.  I had a few Philly bars in mind, so I found their websites and sent out a few e-mails.

All of them replied with standard questions.  They asked what dates I had in mind, how big my group was, and how much I was looking to spend in terms of food/drinks — standard questions from professional event planners.

And then there was Jenn.

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Diablo

Diablo heard a trumpet sound, followed by a roaring cheer.  He had heard people out there all day, but this collective roar was something different, and it made him instinctively rise to his feet.  A heavy door slid open and the bright sunlight flooded into the small chamber that had held him for the past few hours.  Diablo was immediately on his feet as he lunged to his escape from the stifling room.  Sprinting to the sunlight, he quickly stopped, almost falling forward as his eyes adjusted to the light and he realized that he was surrounded by thousands of people, all elevated perfectly in a spectacular basin.  He could see all of their eyes.

“El Diaaaaaablo!” a voice echoed throughout the giant bowl, and then was drowned out by the crowd’s roar.

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Dale Dingle

Dale Dingle hated his job.

He spent his days dialing digits into a computer from the hours of seven in the morning until seven at night.  From dawn ‘til dusk, Dale wondered what he did to deserve such a boring life.  He didn’t know what the numbers even doll hairmeant.  For all he knew, he could have been entering nuclear arms codes for terrorists or social security numbers of his boss’s enemies.  Dale didn’t really care, though.

The only thing that made Dale relatively happy was designing dolls.  This, of course, was a secret hobby, as Dale was completely suspicious of his always-whispering coworkers.  So, during his lunch breaks, Dale snuck into a supply closet and neatly sewed smiling faces onto his happy dolls.

Sometimes he whispered to them.

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Hollow Words

“I brought you some cookies,” she said.

“Thanks,” is what he said, though it sounded more like, “Thanks?”

He pretended to examine the plate, dumbly lifting the pink cellophane to get a better look.

Her jaw still chattered faintly, though not due to the cold.

“Well, I guess I better get going,” she said, knowing it was what he wanted her to say.

They hugged.  It was a much different hug than they had shared many times before, and for some reason it reminded him of a middle school dance.  Emptiness lay between them.

He opened the door for her.

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Sign on the Dotted Line

Today’s piece of flash fiction is the story that I got published in a literary magazine.

My favorite part of this piece is the story behind it.  In one of my creative writing classes in college, we were each given an index card with a word or phrase.  This word or phrase, we were told, was to be the title of of the next piece of flash fiction that the person sitting to our left was going to write.

But before handing them their title, we got to write their first line.

I forget what title I had for the person sitting to my left, but I wrote an ambiguous first line, so that she could take the story in whatever direction she wanted.

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The Week Where I Make Stuff Up

I don’t know if I ever told you guys, but I didn’t celebrate Thanksgiving this past year.

As they did the past few years, my family went to Connecticut.  I, however, had to work at 5PM on Thanksgiving at my old job in Atlantic City.  Therefore, I stayed alone in the ghost town of Sea Isle City, with nothing but a bowl of turkey, mashed potatoes, and stuffing from Wawa to warm my soul.

The salt from my tears made this Bowl of Sorrow taste better.

If that didn’t make you feel bad for me, consider the fact that I also had to work the 6:30AM shift on New Years Day, so I wasn’t able to go out for New Years Eve, or even stay awake to watch the ball drop for that matter.

I have since gotten a new, tremendously superior job, and am currently in the process of moving.  But I still feel the need to make up for the lost holidays that my former job stole from me.

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Three Ways to Guarantee Bad Dreams

Here are three tricks that I recently discovered if you want to have nightmares or wake up feeling incredibly depressed.

#1: Fall asleep while watching The Shining

I recently finished reading The Shining, so naturally I had to watch the film.

Movies never frighten me, and this one was no different.  However, I fell asleep towards the end of the movie and the DVD went back to the menu, in which this was loudly played on loop for the next seven or eight hours while I slept:

Imagine that theme wailing its shriek and thump to your subconscious over and over and over and over.

I woke up in a cold sweat, completely positive that I was dead, at the hands of one of the hundred or so impossibly terrifying things that tried to kill me throughout the night.

#2: Search for “crying kids” in Google Images before sleeping.

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