…and on the 8th day, micro fiction was published on some dude's blog.

Archive for the month “February, 2012”


My name is Leep, and I was born on Leap Day, and yes, Leep is my real name.

I guess my parents thought they were being hilarious or something. I don’t know—I’m just glad I wasn’t born on April 1st.

Anyway, you probably know one or two people with Leap Day birthdays, and they’re just like you except their actual birthday only comes around once every four years, so they just celebrate on February 28th or March 1st all the other years and it’s no big deal.

But here’s the thing: No one knows why, but I literally only have a birthday every four years; I’ve physically only aged a year for every four I’ve been around. What I’m trying to say is, I should be forty-four years old this year, and mentally and emotionally, I am. But physically? I’m eleven.

And, look—I’m not bragging. Yeah, if you do the math, it means I could easily live to be three hundred-something, but believe me, it ain’t all it’s cracked up to be. I’ve been pulled over by the cops more times than I can count, and when they do so, they love to take their good old time double-, triple-, and quadruple-checking my license because they’re so convinced it’s a fake. I could never play sports; when my friends were in Little League, I still had a toddler’s body, and they won’t let a guy in his forties play T-ball, even someone who looks like me (which, don’t get me wrong, is fine—I realize that’d be creepy). I’ve pretty much given up on trying to order a drink in public; I’ve accepted that trying to go to see an R-rated movie in the theater is more trouble than it’s worth for the foreseeable future.

And don’t even get me started on relationships. I’ve never had one, seeing as how any adult woman would be weirded out dating someone who looks like her son, nephew, or grandson. In fact, you didn’t hear this from me, but a year or so ago I got…desperate, shall we say, and hired an escort. Which, in hindsight, was an epically bad idea. (But I’ll never forget the look on her face when she showed up at my place and thought she’d just been hired by a ten-year old—PRICELESS…although it was less funny at the time).

Anyway, my point is this: If you’re ever out and about and an eleven-year old approaches you and asks if you got a light, before you freak out or take him by the ear and start looking for his parents, ask him his name. Because it might be me, and after yet another day of fighting an uphill battle to convince everyone I meet how old I am, I might just really need that smoke.



Six was straight up FREAKING OUT: Cold sweats, pacing, constantly looking over his shoulder, hearing things, talking to himself—the works.

He was so worked up he didn’t see Nine enter the room and didn’t notice her even when she was right next to him, tapping him on the shoulder.

“Hey, Si—”

He jumped and swung around, flailing his arms, and blanched when he saw her, blurting out, “BLAAAGAAH! AAAHYOU’RENOTREALYOU’REAGHOSTIREBUKEYOU! GAAH!”, while shielding his eyes and crumpling to the floor.

“Six…Six. Six, SIX!”

He stopped blubbering and peered up at Nine through his fingers.

“Six, it’s me…Nine. In the flesh. I’m not a ghost, I promise.” She extended a hand to him.

He tentatively reached out, shaking, took her hand, and slowly rose from his knees.

“B-but…I thought t-that…Seven…”

“Ate me?” Nine smiled, shook her head, and placed a hand on Six’s shoulder. “Oh, sweetie—that was a joke. Seven isn’t going to hurt anyone, and he’s certainly not going to eat any—”

“I’m HUNGRY!” Seven bellowed as he popped his head out from around the corner, opening his mouth in a wide, sinister smile, revealing a set of sharp (and fake) vampire teeth.

Six jumped again, took one look at Seven, and with a faint “gahuhh” sound, fainted.

Nine turned around and scowled at Seven as she bent down to fan Six. “Really?”

Seven shrugged. “What?”

Eight walked in behind Seven. “Oh, that was CLASSIC. Did you—”

Nine gave him a death stare, too, and he immediately backed off, saying, “Oh, no, but…yeah, I’ll go get some cold water”, and turned right around and left with Seven in tow.

Nine sighed and turned back to Six, lightly slapping him on the cheek. “Sometimes I wish I was a double-digit number,” she muttered to herself. “They just seem so much more mature.”

Happy But Sad

Abbie found Kyle sitting out on the front step, staring at the night sky.

She sat down beside him. “Hey, watcha thinkin’ about?”

Still staring up, not looking at her, he said, “Did you ever feel happy for someone else, but sad for yourself, and then you feel guilty because who cares what you think, it’s not your life, and this…other person, and her sons, are going back to their normal lives and that’s the way it should be, especially because this other person has been away from her husband for a year, but you still want this other person and her sons to know that they’ll be missed and things won’t be the same without them, and it was so special having them around for so long even though it wasn’t under the best of circumstances, and you also want to say that you’re sorry you didn’t spend as much time with them as you wanted to while they were around, but you hope this other person and her sons know that you love them and it was great having them here and you hope they have safe travels back home and get back to normal quickly because that will make you happy even though you’ll miss them and that’ll suck…you ever feel that way?”

Abbie hugged him and said, “Yeah…I think I know what you’re talking about.”

Kyle hugged her back and said, “I’ll miss you and those little maniacs, Sis.”

“I’ll miss you too…and if you’d like, I could always leave the boys here.”

They looked at each other and had a good laugh.

*For my sister Allison and her little maniacs, Minori and Rei. We miss you already.*

Scratch-Resistant Coating

Henry got the call that his new glasses were ready, and he headed to the mall.

He walked to the counter at the back of the store, where a woman was standing; she looked up and said, “Hi, how are ya, how can I help you?”

“Yes,” Henry replied, “I’m here to pick up my glasses? Henry Collier?”

“OK…” She glanced around under the counter. “Oh, yes–here we go.” She pulled out a small plastic tray and picked up the new glasses, unfolding the arms. She set them aside to look at the receipt. “Sooo…you didn’t get the scratch-resistant coating on the lenses…you sure about that? We could add it now, if you’d like.”

“No, that’s all right. I’m sure they’re fine the way they are.”

And just as he was thinking I already ordered the glasses–let me try ’em on, pay for ’em, and get out of here; don’t try to keep selling me stuff, the woman took out a piece of coarse sandpaper, placed it on the counter, picked up his new glasses, and proceeded to grind both lenses into the sandpaper. She then picked up the glasses and turned them towards him, showing him the lenses that were now covered with tiny cross-hatched scrapes.

“How about now? They ‘fine the way they are’ now? Hmm?” she sneered, staring a hole through him.

At that moment, the store manager came out from the back, took one look at the woman, and started running towards her, yelling, “Hey! HEY! Get out of here–GET OUT!”

The woman shrieked, threw Henry’s new glasses on the floor, and took off running, stepping on the glasses and knocking customers down as she exited the store.

The manager got on the phone, had a quick conversation with Mall Security, then turned to Henry.

“I am so sorry–she actually doesn’t work here. She just keeps showing up and impersonating an employee and doing stuff like that.” He motioned to the glasses on the floor. “Obviously, we’ll replace those at no extra charge.”

Henry thought for a moment, then said, “You know what? Don’t worry about it. I think I might just go with contacts this time.” And right on cue, two security guards dragged the woman back past the storefront, as she was kicking and screaming, “WAKE UP, PEOPLE! YOU’RE BEING LIED TO! HOT TOPIC IS NEITHER HOT NOR A TOPIC! WAKE UP!”

“And maybe I’ll order those contacts online,” Henry added.

Grand Opening Day

Here it was, only two hours into Grand Opening Day, and business was pretty good, but Fran had already had to explain to no less than seven different customers that, yes, they also accepted credit and debit cards, money orders, and personal checks (as long as they were in-state and the customer had photo ID).

She had thought it’d be hilarious to open an all-gold products jewelry store called “Gold4Cash”, but now Fran was having second thoughts on the name.


Jack was nervous. It was his first day on the job as a PWOWE (Pithy Words Of Wisdom Expander; “pea-wow-ee” for short), and he wanted to make a good impression.

He’d been tasked with expanding “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.” He decided to dive right in, and by lunch, he’d come up with:

Fool me three times, and you’re once, twice, three times a fooler.
Fool me four times, and I’ll sing Steve Perry’s “Foolish Heart” at karaoke night as punishment for being so easily fooled.
Fool me five times, and I’ll appear to be good-natured about it on the outside but inside I’ll be secretly filled to the brim with rage whenever I see your face.
Fool me six times, triple shame on me, and if I were an ancient samurai I’d probably commit hara-kiri due to so much shame.
Fool me seven times, and I’ll punch you in the neck with brass knuckles.
Fool me eight times, and I’ll tell you to knock it off because like my favorite TV show,
Fool me nine times, and if times getting fooled were lives and I were a cat, I’d be dead.
Fool me ten times, and I bow to your fooling greatness, for I have been DECAfooled.
Fool me eleven times, and I will blame it on the rain that was fallin’, fallin’.
Fool me twelve times, and seriously–find yourself another mark, already.
Fool me thirteen times, and you deserve a cupcake, as you have fooled me a baker’s dozen times.

Pleased with his morning’s work, Jack headed for lunch.

But he knew he’d have to make it quick. His boss was expecting an expansion of at least one hundred times fooled by the end of the week.

The Seat Of Your Pants

Wes rolled onto his side and nudged Rebecca.

“Hey–you awake?”

“I am now”, she said, looking at the clock on the nightstand.


Not taking the hint, Wes continued. “Why do you think they say ‘Flying by the seat of your pants?’ Why not ‘flying by the crotch’, or ‘flying by the inseam’, or ‘flying by the waistband’? The seat of your pants means the butt, right? Why would you fly by your butt?…Hey–why not ‘fly by the fly of your pants’? Right? Fly by your butt–button fly! Heh, heh…see what I did there? Anyway, good night.”

He rolled onto his other side and immediately started snoring.

Rebecca couldn’t get back to sleep. She had to be up in a few hours anyway, so she mentally planned out her morning: She’d get up, shower, have a quick breakfast, and dump Wes.

She figured he could wake up his next girlfriend at three in the morning and ask her, say, why the word “dump” is used for breaking up with someone and also for pooping, since he seemed to like talking about butts so much.

The Church Service

Bert was excited to go to church for once.

He put on his khakis, his fishing vest and hat, stuck a cigar in his mouth, and was on his way. He couldn’t wait to see who’d be there and what this service was going to be all about.

He arrived early–the very first time he’d ever done so. He got out of the car and bounded towards the church.

He was handed a bulletin at the entrance by a greeter who gave him a funny look and, motioning towards the cigar in his mouth, sheepishly told him, “I’m sorry–you can’t have that in here.”

“Oh, I’m not gonna light it,” Bert replied. “It’s part of my costume. So whe–”

Bert stopped. He was about to say “So where’s your costume?”, when he realized he’d made a huge mistake.

He’d misheard last week; tonight was an ASH Wednesday service.

He quickly turned on his heels and sped-walk back to his car, hoping no one would notice him, and was very thankful that he’d decided against wearing the Klinger costume.

Mrs. Pickelbottum’s

Jay and Seth found a booth and had a seat.

“You’re gonna love this place. Best burgers in the world, I swear. They’re off the charts. And that Fixins Bar, is that not something? There’s, like, every condiment on earth!”

Jay picked up his burger and took a huge bite. Seth followed suit…and immediately grabbed a napkin and spit it back out. He instantly felt nauseated; whatever it was he’d just put in his mouth, it did not taste like a burger. Or food, for that matter.

Jay noticed his stricken look right away. “What’s up? You don’t like it? Is it not done enough, ’cause they’ll take it back and…oh. Wait. Did you happen to put that Mrs. Pickelbottum’s sauce on yours?”

“Yeah. Why?”

“Oh man–you NEVER want to use that stuff. Did you read the label?”

“Sorta. It just looked like some kind of German mustard or something. Why?”

“Go back and look at the label again. Closely.”

Seth took a big sip of his milkshake to try and wash the awful taste out of his mouth (it didn’t help), and headed back to the condiment bar.

He found the bottle, turned the label towards him, and read:

since 1857
for beef, pork, poultry, fish
Adds that special crap flavor to burgers!

And below that, the smiling, matronly cartoon head of Mrs. Pickelbottum herself, with a speech balloon rising from her mouth which read:

 “If it ain’t Pickelbottum’s,
it ain’t CRAP!”

Well, that explains it, thought Seth, and he headed back up front to order another burger.


John entered the room and saw George pacing nervously. He quickly turned to leave; George pacing was never a good thing.

But it was too late. George looked up just as John was at the doorway.

“John! John, I’m glad to see you. Come here, please–I need your help.”

John cringed a bit and turned back into the room. “And how may I help?”

“It’s Jefferson…again. Trying to undermine me. And he has something on me this time.”

This piqued John’s interest. “Oh? And what would that be?”

“He knows about the cherry tree.”

“The cherry tree?”

Yes, the cherry tree!”, George snapped, as if John already knew the story. “When I was seventeen, I got into my father’s whiskey, got drunk, and while intoxicated, I chopped down my father’s prized cherry tree. Jefferson knows the story somehow, and he’s threatened to use it against me. What are we going to do, John? What do we say? How do we plausibly deny this, make it go away?”

John wasn’t sure why this was a “we” problem, but he thought about it for a moment anyway, then suggested, “Well…what if, instead of cover-ups and denials, we get out in front of this? Take ownership of it. When asked, admit without hesitation that, yes, you chopped down that cherry tree. But, you know, leave out the drunk part. Instead, portray it as just some innocent youthful hijinks. You wanted to chop down the cherry tree to, say, prove your strength, or…because you had a misguided but virtuous notion of providing the family with firewood for the winter, or something. And, what’s more, when your father asked you what happened, you answered him, ‘I cannot tell a lie. I chopped down the cherry tree.’ You were just being a kid, and an extremely honest and mature one at that. And, for good measure, you could strongly suggest it was Jefferson who added the–obviously false–drinking angle to the story.”

George broke into a wide wooden smile. “John, you are brilliant! Brilliant, I say, BRILLIANT!” He adjusted his wig and clapped John on the back as he exited the room, walking tall, his confidence restored.

And the rest, as they say, is made-up history.

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