Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Contemplating murder

Mandy clutched the knife more tightly in her right hand. She moved close to The Other Mandy and looked at her threateningly. The Other Mandy just stared as fiercely back, as if daring Mandy to do her worst.
Mandy bit her lip and thought. Why wasn’t The Other Mandy scared? Didn’t she see the knife she held? Mandy was sure she would have been terrified if The Other Mandy had held a knife to her. But she would bluff. Then it clicked. The Other Mandy was bluffing. Mandy smiled.
She wasn’t sure why she wanted to kill The Other Mandy, but she was sure that it was the right thing to do. How could there be two Mandys in the same place? It didn’t make sense. There was only one thing to do. The Other Mandy had to go.
She raised the knife and made as if to strike The Other Mandy, who immediately let loose a high pitched scream.
“Shut up!” Mandy hissed. The Other Mandy was immediately quiet.
“Take it easy,” she coaxed. “It’s going to be quick and just the tiniest bit painful.” She was enjoying watching the various expressions of terror dancing over The Other Mandy’s visage.
Mandy stopped grinning, and moved up close until their noses touched. The Other Mandy was quietly begging Mandy not to kill her. Mandy thought about it.
“No,” she told The Other Mandy quietly at first, and then more loudly, psyching herself up until she finally said,
“No! You have to die.”
The Other Mandy saw that Mandy was faltering. The Other Mandy seized the advantage, softly at first.
“Please let me leave, I’ll go far away and you’ll never have to see me again.”
“Shut up!” Mandy was the one screaming now. “One more word out of you and I swear I’ll make it extremely painful.” Mandy was more mad at herself than anything else. She’d set her mind on killing The Other Mandy, and here she was losing both her nerve and her temper.
“You’re not going to do it,” The Other Mandy said quietly, but matter-of-factly.
“You’re about to make me,” Mandy spat back.
“You’re not going to kill me,” The Other Mandy was in the ascendancy now.
Mandy steeled herself and raised the knife, ready to do this once and for all.
Mandy lowered the knife again.
“Mandy, are you alright?”
“Yes mum,” she sighed.
“Could you come downstairs please?”
“Coming mum”
“Told you so,” The Other Mandy taunted.
Mandy snarled and walked away, turning her back on the mirror.

Thursday, 2 July 2009

The Ring

He had a way of saying that that just melted Joan inside. It was like a code.

for (i = Nathan; i <= infinity; i says "Sweetheart")
do MELT.exe

It annoyed her that she loved it so much.

This time it wouldn’t work though. She was determined to find out for herself whether or not he still loved her. She walked down the stairs to confront him, checking the time on his old grandfather clock on the way. 3:48 am.
“You’ll expect me to believe you’ve been in the studio since eight o’clock right?” she said.
“It is what is, love,” he replied.
“It is what what is? You’re lying.”
“And why would I wanna do that?”
“Umm... let’s see,” she said in mock concentration. “Maybe because you were with your guys in the club and didn’t want me holding back your playa, or maybe... maybe because you were with another...” she let the words hang.
He sat down and looked up at the ceiling. What was all this nonsense? He was sure she didn’t believe any of what she was saying, so he wondered why she said it.
He let her vent her fabricated frustrations, offering little by way of reply, gently encouraging her to let it all out in the hope that she’d run out of steam and allow him talk. She surprised him.
“My bags are in the car and I’m leaving”, she said.
“Why?” was all he could manage.
“Why?” she asked, incredulous. “Why? Because you never listen to a word I say that’s why. Because you’re never at home when I need you, that’s why...”
And she was off again, far from him, a voice that he could tune out as easily as a radio. He only snapped back to the present when the $35,000 engagement ring he’d bought her hit him square on the forehead.
“Ouch!” he said.
“You can keep your fairytale wedding, I’m gone” she said, and out the door she went. He followed her outside.
She’d stopped in front of the car he’d bought her, obviously torn between the fact that she shouldn’t really take the car if she was leaving him, and the presently greater fact that she couldn’t get anywhere near her mum’s house alone at three am in the morning if she didn’t drive. He walked out from the shadow of the doorway.
“Take the car,” he said, “it’s yours anyway”
She hesitated.
If you really don’t feel comfortable, I can drive you over. In any case you really shouldn’t be alone at this time in the morning. What do you say, sweetheart?”
She wanted to say no, but he’d called her sweetheart again. And she knew he was absolutely right, because deep inside she knew he cared deeply for her. But how could he be so calm about her leaving him? She accepted his offer with as much bad grace as she could muster, and sat silent in the car while he drove.
He didn’t say anything either, neither to tell her she was being foolish and should stop all that nonsense immediately; nor to plead with her to stay with him. He just did what she wanted. It infuriated her. He was supposed to get angry, sad, frustrated or at least confused. But he just drove in silence, a very wry smile on his face. She determined to see this through. What she didn’t know was that he was just as determined to win this little war.
Two weeks later Joan got a phone call from a friend.
“Hey you! Tune into E! Now!”
“Why?!” she asked.
“Just do it, okay. It’s important”
Joan flipped channels and watched. She wasn’t really ready to pay attention to the idle gossip peddled by E. She was pining, missing Nathan. But that was until she saw the ring. Her engagement ring on the finger of a rich middle aged fan of Nathan’s. The story said he’d sold the ring on eBay at half the price he’d paid for it. She was livid.
She couldn’t believe he could do such a thing. No wonder he’d been so calm about it. She’d been nothing but a fling right? Nothing but a plaything to be enjoyed until he grew tired. Well thank God she’d left him before he’d been able to dump her. Damn! He was IMPOSSIBLE!
She kept her thoughts in this frame of mind for a good amount of time by remembering all the good times they’d had, and forcing herself to believe they were all lies. Lies! All of them. But how could he be so callous? That was just evil, to make a public mockery of their relationship like that. She couldn’t forgive him this time. That was impossible. But she could go over to his house and give him a rather sizable slice of her mind. Yes. That’s what she would do. She got into HER car (he’d left it with her, the more to be able to mock her she now suspected). Well she wasn’t going to have it. She’d leave his hunk of trash parked outside his house after he’d heard her out. And hear her out he would.
She leapt out of her car as she got to his drive. She ran down the rest of it, and knocked angrily on his door. He looked as if he’d been expecting her, she thought. Whatever.
“Sweetheart”, he said, and she fought hard to steel herself against his onslaught. He didn’t know how hard it made things for her. Sweetheart. After selling her ring. She composed herself.
“Hello Nathan, I’m really mad at you.”
“That’s why you left, isn’t it?” Nathan asked, and she boiled over.
“You sold our engagement ring on eBay!” she screamed.
He didn’t say anything.
Then she broke the floodgates. As usual, he let it all wash over him. He realised he’d let himself get too used to her petulance.
“Be quiet,” he said.
She shut up, stunned.
“What did you say?”
“I told you to be quiet,” he said quietly. “You always make a big deal of little things. If this is why you came” he said, producing the ring, “then you’ve seen it, you can leave.”
She sat down quietly, thoughts racing through her head. She was trying to make sense of what she’d just seen. He’d wanted her to notice him, she realised. Their relationship wasn’t the lie, the eBay sale was. And she’d fallen for it. She was sure he’d known all along that she really cared about him, and that anything that connected her to him was precious to her. So he’d laid down the bait and she’d come running. And now he was asking her to leave.
“But Nathan...” she stammered, “I never realised.”
“Goodbye Joan,” he said.
“Goodbye,” she said, the shame too much to bear, the finality crushing, the knowledge that she’d single-handedly destroyed their relationship bringing tears streaming down her face.
“Goodbye, sweetheart,” he said.

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Thursday, 18 June 2009

The Test

The Test.

He opened the large box. He was excited. He ripped off the polystyrene packaging and plastic wrapping. It was a robot, man size and streamlined. Fully six feet tall and weighing just over seventy kilograms, the JX86 was a class act. He spent a while perusing the instruction manual, not that he didn’t already know everything there was to know about robots, and robotics for that matter.
In fact, the JX86 was his own creation - well not creation per se, but created based on his design. And now he’d been given a complimentary copy, even though he knew The Company just wanted to be sure it worked according to his specifications before releasing it to the general public. His daughter would be thrilled by the new addition.
He called out to Samantha, and she came running.
“Hi dad!” she said, running up. She stopped dead when she saw the gleaming robot with humanoid proportions. She was stunned.
“What’s that?” she asked.
“Samantha, this is Alexander.”
At that the robot came to life. He really was called Alexander. Samantha thought it should be able to talk if it responded to its name with those beautiful lights in its eyes.
“Hello Alexander,” she said.
The robot looked at her. Scanning its database for what kind of creature. It could recognise over two billion different species of living matter and could focus on anything from a nanometre to a few kilometres in length. It came up with juvenile Homo sapiens sapiens, female. Alexander scanned his language database. He understood well over a thousand languages, including Esperanto, Lojban and Klingon. It located English, Caucasian New York accent. Speech centres activated, simulated human intelligent thought relayed messages to the core processor.
“Hello young lady, what is your name?” Alexander said in a perfect New York accent.
“Daddy, it talks! It talks! Yay!”
“Why don’t you spend some time with Alexander,” her dad said.
“Super,” said Samantha. She turned to the robot.
“Alex? I can call you Alex, can’t I?”
The robot nodded.
“Nice. You can call me Sam.”
The robot smiled. Well it wasn’t exactly a smile, as the robot’s face did not have the expression range of a human’s, but Sam easily recognised it as a smile. It was its eyes. The robot had the most extraordinary eyes. They changed colour according to its emotions, from a neutral grey to a tranquil blue, excited yellow, angry red, pious white, and a happy green. Sam didn’t know that it could do that, but somehow could recognise the warmth in the green eyes and slight rise of the robot’s shoulders that signified a smile.
“Do you have friends Alex?” Sam asked, spurred on by the robots obvious enthusiasm for her.
“No, but I’d like some,” said the robot, the emotion module of its simulated human intelligent thought centre coming into play once again.
“I could be your friend, if you like,” said Sam.
“I’d like that very much,” said Alex.
Then Alex and Sam launched into conversation. They talked and talked and talked, about anything and everything. They talked about school and friends, people and robots, pets and wild animals, quiet times and adventures, and all sorts of stuff. Sam didn’t get tired of talking, and Alex didn’t have an exhaustion integrated nanocircuit in his entire system.
Morning sped into afternoon and dad came to call Sam to lunch.
“Are you going to eat with us?” Samantha asked.
“I’m an android. I don’t eat.”
Sam was curious.
“Then how come you know what ice cream tastes like,” she asked.
“I don’t. I only know that people like it, so it must taste nice.”
“Oh... okay.”
She stretched her little arms out wide for a hug. Alex’s simulated human intelligent thought centre had a strange thought. It thought that this child was a bit too demanding. It recognised the gesture, after an extensive database search that took all of three seconds. It immediately evened its surface to human temperature, and knelt down to briefly hold the girl, in what humans call a hug.
“Goodbye Sam,” the Android said, with just the right amount of ruefulness in its voice that Samantha thought it sorry to have to leave.
“It’s alright,” she said brightly, “we’ll see again soon.”
While Sam was at lunch, dad - who’d been watching the whole episode - took Alex away. He led him up to the lab.
“Quite a test, don’t you think?” dad asked.
“Quite,” the robot replied.
“She’s innocent, impulsive, inquisitive and inadvertently insightful”, the robot continued, alliterating, “definitely a girl.”

Monday, 18 May 2009


It’s a crazy world blogosphere! And I’m only being honest. I’ve only got a couple of things to talk about, and one of them happened in Dallas about 11 months ago. Guess what? A woman gave birth.

“But that happens every day!” you say. True, but it’s not everyday a woman gives birth to twins with different fathers.

In a nutshell. Woman has partner, has sex with him. Woman cheats on partner. Woman gets pregnant with twins, and partner is over the moon. Woman gives birth, everyone’s still on cloud neuf. Twins start to look a little different, so they go to the hospital, where tests are run and it’s discovered that she was impregnated by two different people.

Luckily for her, her partner’s either a good man or a sucker, as he vows to stay with her and raise both those kids. I support him. But it only goes to show that whatever secret thing you do will eventually be found out.


The other thing is Obama speaking out about abortion and being called a baby-killer. Now that’s just unfair. I’m sure if Malia Ann or Natasha were to bring home an unwanted embryo Mr. President probably won’t drive her to an abortion clinic.

The bottom line is, what the president said is the truth, since abortion is possible, like all things human it should be a human decision. It’s never an easy decision, and I personally think people who damn it for religious reasons should shut up! If you’ve witnessed it first hand and feel it’s too traumatic for a woman to have to go through, then you can speak out against it.

You cannot say something is wrong if it can save a person. A rape victim, or a child barely old enough to take care of herself; should these people have to carry an unwanted burden because of their mistake, or someone else’s wickedness? Let’s not make a very sensitive and complicated issue one that will be resolved on the basis of “right and wrong”, because, as so many times it has been shown, the lines between them are often too blurred to make out.

Wednesday, 6 May 2009

On Vicctory

Vicctory has two C's because it means the total annihilation of the opposition. I write this as a Manchester United fan. Football should be a joy to watch, especially when you know the caliber of opposition you're up against. Arsenal FC are a great club, with a great coach and a great manager, but the best leaders have always had the element of luck, grace or favour, whichever you prefer to call it. It was all United yesterday. Kieran Gibbs will forever be known as the youngster who gifted Manchester United the goal that gave the game away, but in reality, it could happen to anyone, not just a 19 year old stripling. In fact, it did happen to John Terry last year in Moscow.
But that's beside the point. The fact is, winners always have much to say about how they won. And that leads me to another winner. Faheem Rasheed Najm, otherwise known as T-Pain, doesn't speak as much as Kanye West, but I personally believe he's the much more creative of the two. But is he the winner? I don't know. What I do know is that more people that I know like T-Pain than do Mr. West, but is that vicctory. Let's get behind true talent and show appreciation to those who really do the work.
By the way, have you heard of Kevin Cossom. He wrote the hooks to Rick Ross' Speeding and Ace Hood's Cash Flow, as well as writing and singing the hooks uncredited on Chamillionaire's Won't Let You Down and Rick Ross' Usual Suspects.
It tells you something doesn't it, the realness isn't always in the face, it's mostly in the make-up.

Tuesday, 5 May 2009

Restarting this

I'm sure very few people will read this first note, but it doesn't really matter. I'm just an ordinary guy... for now. Don't worry, we'll have plenty to talk about in the coming weeks, not least the fact that I'm becoming a star... watch this space people, and don't say I didn't warn ya. Anyway this is just sorta an introduction, so you may call be Tomboxe or Dxtr st. Joc, whichever you prefer. Later