Dangerous Thoughts

Book, Pen, Notebook, Diary, Desk, Writing, Office

Pixabay

Dear Diary,

I was thinking.  Hey, I am one smart guy.   Really smart.  And the people “in charge,” are stupid, really stupid.  Very stupid indeed.  I would have called them inept, but stupid is a good word.  A terrific word to describe them.  In fact they are losers, they are amazing in their loser-ness, true losers.  I am a winner, I am use to winning, I have been winning my whole life.  So since I am a top guy, really smart, a winner, I think it would be an amazing thing if I was in charge.  I would be tremendous at it.  Yes, it’s time for me to do some more tremendous, like really amazing winning.

Tuesday Writing Prompt: Dangerous Thoughts

Padre

 

 

 

A Sad Situation

Beauty In A White Coat, Brunette

Pixabay

Madelyn had always been a healthy and active individual.  She had played field hockey at school, and even was given a scholarship to play the sport at university.  On finishing her degree, she was thrilled to be recruited for a major financial firm near Canary Wharf in London.   All of her Californian friends were envious of the opportunities and experiences she would have.

Her arrival in the UK was in an exceptionally hot summer by British standards, but didn’t seen all that uncomfortable for the San Diego native.  Her flat was modern, yet un-air conditioned, so she spent much of her out of the office time exploring the landmarks or just chilling in Hyde Park.

As October, and then November crept around, Madelyn found the damp chill a little too much to deal with.  She began to spend more and more of her leisure time in the warmth of her amply heated flat.  Despite this she felt increasingly ill.  There were days when she felt so listless that she could barely pull herself from under the bed covers and go to work.

Eventually, with Christmas around the corner, and the fatigue rowing more intense, she scheduled an appointment with her doctor.  Some blood tests were made, and she was told that they would have the results in seven to ten days.  It proved an incredibly long week for Madelyn.  Not only was she constantly exhausted, but she had a nagging worry about the upcoming diagnosis.  Was it cancer? she would muse.  It was almost too much to bear.

Finally the day of the follow-up GP’s visit came.   She entered the doctor’s surgery with apprehension.

“Miss Warren, please take a set,” the doctor said.

“It’s bad isn’t it?” Madelyn blurted out.

“No.  It’s SAD actually,” the GP replied.

“Sad?” Madelyn queried.

“Yes, Seasonal Affective Disorder – that and some low vitamin levels.  It affects a lot of people in Britain.  The low levels of sun light in the Autumn and Winter have a physical impact on the body.  I am going to prescribe some Vitamin D capsules for you, and I recommend that you try a light box.  Many people find they help.

Later that evening, after a trip to Boots Chemists, Madelyn settled onto her bed and plugged in her new Lumie SAD Lamp.  “Well then,” Madelyn said, ” I guess You are my sunshine.”

 

Padre

 

Saturday Mix – Mad About Metaphor: You are my sunshine

 

To Kill the Witch Queen

Witch, Black Cat, Broom, Halloween, Dark

image: Pixabay

 

That is how you’ll kill the Witch Queen.

Its not by water, or by burning

For Oz had it wrong, and Salem did too

It has nothing to do with a ruby shoe

For the witches in Disney, they too are flawed

Rarely does their MO – poisoned apples involve

No to rid yourself of witches

And evil step mothers too

Just kill them with kindness

It’s the least you can do

 

Padre

 

Written for d’Verse Poetics: Last Lines

The prompt:  “Choose a book that is physically close to you right now. Ok, it might not be the first one within reach. I will never know. Turn to the LAST page. Read the last one or two lines. Let these words stir your poetic soul and write a poem. Grab your cookbook, encyclopedia (if you still own one), novel, poetry book, biography, magazine, instruction manual, whatever your heart desires.”

The book near at hand was the ebook Song of Shadows by Sylvia Mercedes.  The last line is “That is how you will kill the Witch Queen.”

 

 

Sky Shield

 

 

The lands had not always been this way…dry and barren. The trail of sand he now followed had once been a swiftly flowing river, the cliffs around it covered with brush and trees. Birds and other animals had nested there. Now nothing did. Most of the animals were gone–there was no way for them to survive. The people were gone, too, forced further and further away from the place that had once been their home. Even the lands that still grew lush and green were shrinking by the year. Something had to be done to stop this slow death, which had all begun with a terrible mistake. The answer was here, where the blight had begun. And he was determined to find it… 

But where was the facility that had developed Sky Shield?  And how did the technology designers allow the system, that was to save the planet, to go so wrong?  Aaron pondered these questions, and consulted the hand drawn map he had been given by “the Engineer.”  How odd that electronics had been so relied on, that no accurate chart had ever been made of the facility’s position.  “GPS is all we will need,” so the stories about it told, but that was before the Sky Shield itself cut off the satellite signals coming to the surface.  But worse still, the Shield trapped in the planet’s warmth and pollution.  Yes, no meteors would bombard the surface, nor did the great asteroid which the system was meant to deflect strike.  Well, not head on.  But how could they not have calculated that the huge object’s energy feedback would fry the Sky Shield’s own mainframes?

Then he saw it, a reflected glint of something metallic on the far side of the wadi.   Was this the entrance he had been looking for?

Aaron approached the spot cautiously, and pulled the manual override key from the pouch which hung around his neck.  It fit the lock perfectly, and there was a dry grinding click when he turned it.  The door opened and he stepped into the gloom of a descending corridor.  He lit a small lantern which was at his side and then proceeded.  Nothing moved, no lights came on, the place was dead.

He came to another doorway, and pulled out the second mechanical key.  This did not fit, so he fumbled for the only remaining object in his pouch.  It did fit.  He turned it and as he did the door opened.  Stepping into the space beyond, there was a sudden hum and the overhead lights flickered.  Happily, he set his lantern aside.

He approached the console labelled “Control,” and pushed aside the skeletal remains siting before it.  He then once again drew out the second key.  This time it fit.  Turning it, a screen dimly came to life.  It bore the words “System shut down.  Do you wish to proceed?”  He reached to the keyboard and typed “Yes.”  Immediately, a countdown sequence appeared on the screen: “59:59,” it read, and Aaron scrambled back into the man-made desert and the hope of a new beginning.

Padre

FANTASY ART FRIDAY   Though I prefer to write more classic fantasy, this prompt led me down a more Sci-Fi path.  But in a pinch, wold building is world building.

Bird Walk

Emus, Emu, Big Bird, Zoo, Plumage

image: Pixabay

This week Jim Adams’ Song Lyric Sunday theme is “bird,” “fly,” “sky,” and “wing.”  When  I was a kid, a novelty song hit the US and Canadian Country charts.  It was “Tennessee Bird Walk” by the  husband-and-wife duo Jack Blanchard & Misty Morgan.  The 1970 single was their second release on the country charts and their most successful single. “Tennessee Bird Walk” went to number one on the country charts.

Lyrics
Take away the trees and the birds
All have to sit upon the ground, uum
Take away their wings and
The birds will have to walk to get around
And take away the bird baths
And dirty birds will soon be ev’rywhere
Take away their feathers and
The birds will walk around in underwear
Take away their chirp and the
Birds will have to whisper when they sing
And take away their common sense and
They’ll be headed southward in the spring
Oh remember my darling
When spring is in the air
And the bald headed birds
Are whisp’ring ev’rywhere
You can see them walking
Southward in their dirty underwear
That’s Tennessee Bird walk
How about some trees so the birds
Won’t have to sit upon the ground, uum
How about some wings so the
Birds won’t have to walk to get around
And how about a bird bath or two
so the birds will all be clean
How about some feathers so their
Underwear no longer can be seen
How about a chirp so the birds
Won’t have to whisper when they sing
And how about some common sense so they
Won’t be blocking traffic in the spring
Oh remember my darling
When spring is in the air
And the bald headed birds
Are whisp’ring ev’rywhere
You can see them walking
Southward in their dirty underwear
That’s Tennessee Bird walk
Source: Musixmatch
Songwriters: JACK BLANCHARD
Tennessee Bird Walk lyrics © MECHANICAL COPYRIGHT PROTECTION SOCIETY LTD
Video Link: Tennessee Bird Walk

Do the Ends Justify the Means?

Image result for bribery

image: Mises Institute

Fandango wrote: For this week’s provocative question, I am asking about means and ends. I have often heard people say that “the end justifies the means.” Conversely, I’ve heard others say that “the means justifies the end.” So what about you?

One way to approach this is to phrase it in a slightly different light.  With my ethics students, we seldom stick with merely “do the ends justify the means.”  Instead we focus on intention versus consequences.  What are the intentions of your actions?  Are they ethical?  Do you seek to bring about a positive result, and if so can this be achieved by less that ethical actions?  Do such actions in turn corrupt the end?

I want to get an “A,” is my desired “end.”  I can study, and review, and practice until the topic is mastered; or I can make a “cheat sheet,” or devise a code with a more able student to feed me answers.  Both actions get the end result.  But what about the real life application of knowledge I don’t actually have.  Might I lose a job because I am not up to it, etc..  Or consider bribery to meet a political or corporate end, is it in the public interest or only your own?

But even positive intentions are problematic.  The blind man and the manhole scenario is one of these.  You see a person with a white and red stick crossing the road.  The stick indicates both hearing and sight problems.  You with your 20/20 vision note an open manhole cover.  You shout a warning that is unheard.  You therefore intervene, and pull the person away from the impending fall.  As a result they stumble and break a leg.  You motive, and even initial action were positive, but with a negative outcome.  Does this make it a bad deed?  In this case the end was because of a means.  Should in hindsight you not even have tried.

So the answer to Fandango’s Provocative Question is, it depends.  It depends on your philosophical outlook.  Are you an absolutist?  Then always act based on pure intent.  Are you a relativist? Then let the individual situation be your guide.

Remember Spock – the greatest good for the greatest number.

Now that I have philosophically waffled long enough, I personally hold that the means must be as worthy of you as the end result.  Honour is as honour does.

 

Padre

Fandango’s Provocative Question #36

 

 

An Unexpected Discovery

 

White Poplar, Riparian Forest, Alameda

Image by Marc Pascual from Pixabay 

We were traipsing through a rather large wood, which was well over ninety acres in size, when we can across a very unexpected sight.  We saw a small plump bear rigorously attempting to climb a poplar tree.  The fallen twigs and leaves around him were evidence that he had previously shaken the tree in an attempt to free something or to knock something down.

Next to the tree was a small piglet with a very downtrodden look about him.  In his one hand he held the remains of a popped balloon and he was desperately trying to pump it up again, but to no avail.  He was so forlorn that is was all my wife could do to keep herself from running over to cuddle and comfort him.

“Bother,” the bear said brusquely as he descended the tree.  It was now clear that he had been trying to get to a honeybee nest on one of the higher boughs.  He stood looking up, tapping his forehead with his paw, spittle dripping from the corner of his mouth.

It was obvious that this little creature was far from starvation as his plump belly jiggled as he tapped his head.  It just seemed that the thought of eating honey was somehow hardwired into him.  Maybe it’s been that way forever, in the makeup of little Sussex bears.

 

Padre

 

Wordle #146

1. Poplar Tree
2. Brusque
3. Traipse
4. Rigorous
5. Shaken
6. Pump
7. Downtrodden
8. Starvation
9. Cuddle
10. Spittle
11. Hardwired
12. Forever

The Dog Fight

 

68576969_2225338217705330_1980946802198708224_n

 

The non-aggression pact with the Lupines had always been a sham, but the Ovinian Duchy still had high hopes.

The Ovines were distressed to see the Lupines annex East Canineia in the name of “Blood Unity,” and they did their best to prepare their meagre forces for the worst.   One of the newest innovations in the Duchy’s defenses was the air wing.   These brave sheep were no match in either speed or killing power with the Lupines, but they had heart, and the desire to defend the “the Flock” as they called their homeland.

Then it happened, on September the First, waves of “the Pack” crossed the frontier in a coordinated blitz by land and in the air.  The “Air Wolves” were formidable and the sheer numbers of them seemed daunting.  But Ramski’s “Flying Fleeces” were not just going to capitulate.

Flight Officer Eweski is a case in point.  He climbed high into the sun, and as a large formation of the “Pack” broke through the clouds, he dived and through sheer determination took out three of the predictors before disappearing into a cloud bank.  He then waiting his chance and attacked again, but with his resources exhausted he made his final assault.  He seeing a “Lone Wolf” hunter, rushed forward from the clouds and rammed the Lupine ace.  Eweski had severely damaged himself in the attack but in a supreme display of aviation managed the spiral downwards into a controlled landing.

Ramski, Eweski, and others of the valiant “Fleeces,” subsequently made their way to the island stronghold of the Bulldogs, where they later proved themselves again in that nations “finest hour.”

Padre

Photo Challenge #275

 

The Escape

 

Photo courtesy of Alexis Ortiz

Fed up with never growing up, Peter’s shadow quietly snuck out of Neverland.   The shadow’s previous attempt to escape in London had been thwarted by that Wendy, and the thread she had used to reattach Shadow to the chief Lost Boy had taken a long time to become weak enough for another attempt.   This time Shadow knew exactly what to do, he was going to speed away to the cathedral, and seek asylum.   As he sped across the court yard, he could not help but to leap for joy.  He was finally going to be free.

(96 Words)

 

Padre

Sunday Photo Fiction – August 4 2019