Benji Can Explain

“I can explain!”

Benji had been starting conversations this way since grade school.  He never intended to be such a source of problems, but intent and reality were having a conversation without Benji.

“No, I should not have had the yo-yo out on the factory floor.  No, I should not have had my headphones in and listening to Chumbawumba at full volume.  I realize this is both damaging to my ears and dampens my ability to hear forklifts.  No, I should not have screamed when the forklift zipped by me.  Probably should have tried to stop myself from falling over so dramatically too.”  Benji’s second part of explanation statements tried to head off as many suspected questions as possible.  As previously stated, he’d been doing this for quite some time.

“Things got really weird when I was falling though.  Did you know this place has mice? Like, a ton of mice.  I saw a mouse as I hit the floor.  So I threw the yo-yo at it.  It was instinct.  You see something that carries the plague, you throw something at it.  Well, I should have played more baseball as a child because I missed the target entirely.  The yo-yo hit one of the robotic arms and twisted it.  I only use solid steel yo-yos, so the impact was quite forceful.”

At this point, Benji wondered if he could skip some details as his supervisors were staring at him with very cross expressions.  He opted against skipping any detail.

“The robot spun around and knocked down a tray of finished goods.  The goods began to roll.  I guess the vibration on the floor panicked the rest of the mice because they erupted into a stampede.  I’m still on the floor at this point and see a hundred tiny furry feet racing at my face.  I panic.  I launch myself up with one of those cool ninja jump moves like in the movies.  Well, I should have checked my surroundings first because I jumped right into Martha.  She shouts, starts falling over too, sees the mice, decides falling is a bad idea and stops herself by grabbing my shirt.  We avoid falling over but I spin around. Again.  I’m very dizzy at this point.  Martha let’s go of me and I stumble over my own feet and knock down another stack of goods.”

Benji paused to make a shrugging ‘what-do-you-do?’ expression.

“This time we go all movie cliche and the racks starts falling down like dominoes.  I’m horrified of course, but fear only takes over when the racks knock over that vat of near weightless chemicals that has been here since the 80s and we can’t legally destroy or we get a Ghostbusters style visit from the EPA.  So the vat starts rolling and rolling.  We’re shouting for people to get out of the way.  If a Go-Pro had been attached to this thing the footage would have been amazing.”

He took in a deep breath.

“The vat rolls right out the shipping dock and opens up.  The chemical is translucent and apparently photo-volatile.  As soon as the sun hit it, the chemical erupts in flame.  Now, before we go all crazy here and say I should be fired let me state this; the trees needed to go anyway and now we can put a parking lot back there.  It really is a win-win when we get down to it.”

Benji finished his version of events with a smile.  A moment later he was escorted from the building.


A Performance Review Compromise

“Robert, could you come in here please?” Frank said.

Robert pushed his chair away from his desk and his mind went wild with what a sudden discussion with his boss could mean.  “What’s up, Frank?” He asked, stepping into the office.

“Have a seat and shut the door if you would. Thanks.”  The two took their seats.  “Just a quick performance review.  Have to say, you’re doing great work.  I do want to discuss one little issue though.”

The two real estate developers stared at each other a moment.  Robert was pretty sure he knew what was coming.

“Your development name ideas during project proposals have some of our other developers concerned,” Frank said.

“Oh come on. They’re proposals,” Robert retorted.

“For example.  The golf course anchored development on 51st was pitched with Loch Luster.  During the pitch you kept insisting it would be called lackluster.”

Robert laughed.

“Or the gated community called HDOTU.  After hours of chit chat it was revealed that this meant Heat Death of the Universe.  You laughed and changed the name to Duckberg when you noticed people didn’t like that.” Frank said.

“And now Duckberg is a well loved community.  It worked out,” Robert said, stifling a laugh.

“I’ll just read some of these names here.  Zombie Proof Acres, Apocalypse Ranch, Totally Haunted Patio Homes at Dove Ridge, Acid Rain Ranch, Martian Landing Site Ranch, Cracked Concrete Ranch, really just a bunch of Ranch names for the next, uh,” Frank flipped through a stack of papers, “next seven pages.”

“That’s seven pages of project proposals though. Good year for the company!” Robert said.  Frank did not enjoy the sarcastic tone.

“You know what, let’s compromise here.  Could you name each proposal Duckberg 2, 3, 4 and so on.  Like a horror movie franchise.  I’ll even allow three ‘Duckberg 2 v Duckberg 3 in Space’ titles over the next 12 months.  We just need fewer end of times ranches and more marketing flyer friendly names, okay?” Frank pleaded.

“I will try my best.  But there is a pitch for High Noon Duel Community coming across your desk shortly.” Robert said.

“Last one, kid. Last one.”

Carousels That Should Not Exist


“Gang, we need the next big thing in classic amusement parks rides.  Those hipsters love the old timey allure of a carousel, but we need something to give them an ironic edge.  What do you have for me?” Said the man with a business card in his pocket showing his title as “Director of Theme Park Theme”.   He spent five years figuring it out, abandoning the quest three years ago.

“Well, those Alien movies are big again.  Perhaps someone should talk to Ridley Scott for licensing rights?” Offered the Assistant Director of Carousel Operations.

“Is the Hall of Presidents still around? If not could we steal the robots and put them on a carousel?” Suggested the Interim Manager of Theme Park Theme Design.

“What if we go old school and make all of the mounts monsters from ancient Greece?” Tony, the intern, said.

“Make all of them bumble bees and play Flight of the Bumblebee through the speakers!” The Associate Supervisor of Park Ride Attendants shouted.

“Kids are all about those fidget spinners these days.  Maybe have the mounts spin and spin as they orbit the center?” The Production Manager of Treaty Concessions said.  “Treaty” was the company jargon for snack stands.  It took three weeks to figure that out.

The Director of Theme Park theme raised his hand to put an end to conversation. “Good ideas all.  I want to see President faces on Alien bodies by noon Tuesday.  Intern, get to work on having the mounts spin and spin.  Someone find a public domain cut of Flight of the Bumblebee.  We go into production next month.  Now get to work!”

The Director of Theme Park Theme felt that the future of “Kitchen Sink Rides and Slides” amusement park was bright indeed.

Chuck at the Food Court

“You know, there use to be a graying tower alone on the sea? You guys ever hear of this?” Chuck heard the table behind him say.

He sat alone in a mall food court, eating pizza between shopping runs.  It was birthday season and he liked to get all his shopping done at once.  People watching was always nice too, but sometimes people left him questioning reality.  The conversation behind him had piqued his interest.

“There’s so much a man can tell you, so much he can say.  In particular, Mr. Ronald Riehns, historian of the Gray Tower that stands alone in the sea.” Another person at the table said. Continue reading

Building the App

I’m slowly coming into my own with coding.  Slowly.  As with any new skill, application is very important.  But how to apply the skill? Good golly, that’s a focus issue that needs to be sorted out.

Right now!

Apps under consideration… Continue reading

Sunset Musings

And now….

Sunset Musings and Considerations.

Volume 1.


People have been cut by smooth jazz CDs.

Thank you.

Clarence’s Movie Experience

Clarence looked around the movie set with awe and confusion.

“Mr. Down,” someone called from afar.  Clarence was never comfortable being addressed as ‘mister’.  Despite spending years in public service, ‘Mr. Down’ would always be his father’s name.  He turned to see who was seeking him.

A round man ran toward him.  The film’s producer, Wyatt Pickle.  Clarence doubted that was the man’s given name, but liked to think there was a full lineage attached to the Pickle name.

“Wyatt, good to see you,” Clarence said.  His affable nature and sturdy handshakes were keys to his story; the story that was now being immortalized in a blockbuster movie produced by Wyatt Pickle and a team of movie industry elites. Continue reading