Ohlone College
Creative Writing Stories

Page 6
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          "I guess."

          "That's right, funny chap, you're a frog! You're hilarious earthling! Outright outrageous! Looksee, just a frog, nothing else to see."

            "A fucking fake..."

            "Ladies and gentlemen, a cake!"

            "A psuedowriter."

            "A what? Look fella's, nothing more to see here!"

            "I...can't...I can't.

            "What's the matter?" So I handed him the story. "I've lost it man. I've lost my mojo."

            "Oh...it's our conversation." So he scratched his head and lit up a cigarette. "Funny. I always thought it was genetic," exhaled a plume of Menthol, stared hard into the distance, continued, "Do you know how it happened?"

I shook my head.

            "I don't know." So a cigarette appeared before me. I took it, let him light it. "Thanks."

            "Cheer up dreary earthling. All's not lost."

            "What good am I, if I can't write? If I can't make or make feel?"

            "You know, I believe we just have bad days, and good days sometimes."

I shrugged, and we settled back into our booths.

Then it happened. I noticed at first the increasing amount of Menthol coming from my ciggy, only it wasn't. It was coming in from the booth next to mine. So I looked over to find him gloating over his paper. He started smoking, long slow puffs at first, then faster, and faster, until plumes of Menthol were gushing into my booth like a chimney sweep.

            "My god. Look at that. I did it. I doublethinked!"

            "Really?" Bafflement coupled with admiration swelled up within me.

            "Yeah, man! I really did!"

Then jealousy sunk it. "What'd you write about?"

"I don't have a fucking clue! Let's see. A squash! I wrote about a squash. Oh yes, thank the heavens, a squash! I'm no longer handicapped!"

            The emotions leveled out in purgatory.

            "Wow. Very good."

            "More than very good! Fantastically good!"

            "Why?" I was torn.

            "Listen: You got it in one day. I've had it most my life. I thought it was genetic, but we've proven otherwise. While this one-day may be an exception, and I may never experience it again, or very little, I don't want to believe that. Instead, I'm going to assume entirely that I've been living one long bad day most my life. When I had said we have bad days and good days sometimes, I only said it to make you feel better--but we've proven otherwise so it must be true! We do have good days, and we have bad days."

The bell rung. Typewriters roared to life as an orchestra of strokes.

So I started writing. Slow at first, but it gradually picked up. So I was writing, but it was shitty. So I stopped and started over.


I started again, but I found it too cliché, so I scrapped that and began once more.

I tried again, but I failed miserably. My head was too full of shit and I began to panic. Cool, I said to myself, you're so very cool, and the aching pang, which was thinking subsided slightly. The heart halfway up my throat, and asphyxiating my airflow backed off. Cool. I was writing an abominable horror, and while I wanted to do anything but that, I trudged on. It had to be finished, I echoed. Finish it!

Each keystroke was a thorn in my side; each sentence was a mouthful of cat fur; each soliloquy made me wince a fart. I wrote page, after page, of countless shit: a pure volume of excrement, and I speculated that somewhere, in some unseen parallel dimension, I had won the award for the crappiest work ever. But it felt good to finish it. I did it.

So the bell signaled the end.

A grinning idiot spied me from his booth.

            "So? How'd it go?"

I managed to utter something back.

            "What about?"

            "You first."

            "A tomato. It became sentient and tried to escape its masters."


            "He got eaten. What was yours about?"

            "A man who can't think with glasses, but can't see without them."

            "Do I detect a deeper meaning?"

            "Sort of. He prefers to view the world though a hazy, distorted melancholy rather than face the sharp reality. Nothing really happens though. It's just the moment of truth when his glasses are incidentally knocked off, where after so long of wearing them, he forgot what a beautiful and carefree world he left behind."

            "So the glasses were a control device."

           "Yeah, I guess it was. You could say that."

So we lounged around for awhile with a seductive mistress called Menthol.

            "You ever wonder who reads our crap? I mean it is crap. I don't get the rules about stuff not being wasted."

            "Sometimes, great things pass through here. I think that's why the rule is in place. Even a phrase, a sentence, a single word, placed appropriately can make or break a man."

Ding. The whole world seemed to freeze; the whole world seemed to shift their focus toward me.