There's been a recent social experiment amongst certain individuals in Crown Heights and it's associated suburbs (Morristown, Milwaukee, Atlanta etc.) They have taken up a creative writing experiment and I've contributed to it as well. Below are their paragraphs, with mine appearing last. Oh and the Aliens? Yes . . . I went there.
(Cheerio's Paragraph) His coat flapped around his ankles as he strode down the dark street. He jiggled his keys in his hand and whistled along to the music streaming from his headphones. The walk sign flicked on as he reached the corner, but he still turned his head to look for cars coming. Even after a year and a half of living in Brooklyn, he hadn't grown accustomed to the one way streets. He liked it though. He wasn't quite sure why, but he liked living in New York.
Suddenly, a shot rang out. And then another. And another. Shots, that is. Suffice it to say that our hero was nonplussed, and quickly looked around for one of the ubiquitous rookie cops who had been hanging out on every street corner for the last few months. They were nowhere to be found. Our hero realized that the shots had been fired at him, and he looked around for some cover. There wasn't any, and he ducked. All this took less time than it took to write, but the murderous assailants were not to be denied, and our hero was soon lying in a puddle of blood.
He touched the growing puddle of crimson blood and painstakingly pulled his head a few micrometers off the rough concrete to take one last look at himself. He shuddered before gracefully slipping into oblivion. The street was quiet save for the rustle of a few dead leaves and old candy wrappers. The air was thick with the uneasy quietude of deceit and police sirens started to whine in the distance.
It was but a few minutes later that Henry found himself ambling along the same street feeling sorry for himself. Here he was, 43 and dressed as Little Bunny Foofoo for some brat's birthday. He had heard the shots and promptly ignored them. Last thing he needed was some idiot cop playing games while he was in the bunny suit. God it was hot and the polyester itched terribly. Henry was mid-spit when Gary came into sight. Choking on saliva, he ran to get closer. Blood was everywhere. "Aw man..." he muttered.
"Gary Feld is a 22 year old Caucasian male brought in this afternoon with a gun-shot wound to his left hip, he has no significant past medical history and is now in stable condition. He will be admitted to the surgical floor shortly. A surgical and anesthesiology consult has been ordered. He is being given morphine as needed for pain.” Hearing his name, Gershon groggily opened his eyes, slowly remembering the events of the day. The dim light shining from the metallic stand was painfully bright and made him conscious of a splitting headache. He quickly shut his eyes, but not before he caught a blurred glimpse of his surroundings. There were two women in white coats standing by his bed in the emergency room. The younger one presenting his case was clearly nervous and stuttering, almost cowering in the presence of the older scowling lady. He also thought he saw an obese African American man dressed like a nightmare bunny eying him curiously. Morphine can do strange things to you he thought as he drifted away.
Meanwhile, our "hero" Gershon's shooters continued on to their main objective: Gershon's residence. Gershon’s basement apartment was situated in a residential neighborhood. The presence of these tough, well armed men would obviously attract attention, but they made no attempt to be discreet. Their mission as they had planned it would not take more than five minutes, and they hoped to be out of the apartment long before the police arrived. Before their M-class Mercedes had completely stopped up outside the house, the men dashed to their assignments. There were four of them. Two took up guard positions outside the house. The other two shot off the bolt on the door and went inside. They knew exactly where to go. In the bedroom was a small, portable safe. It was a junky contraption, and they easily shot off the lock. Inside were neatly arranged packages of cocaine. They stuffed the whole safe into a medium-sized gym bag and left, satisfied that they had found everything they had come for. “Let’s go. We’re done here,” the leader said, stuffing the bag into the trunk of the car. All four men jumped back into the car. Police sirens could be heard in the distance as their car screeched away into the night. Nobody was going to catch them.
Dina Light snickered as she watched the taillights of the receding car. She waited another minute (56 seconds, to be precise) before getting up from the ground. She casually sauntered down the block, trying to put as much distance between herself and the now obviously-broken-into house. Amateurs. But she would have loved to be there when they opened those bags. She snickered again. Amazing how one box of confectionery sugar can go such a long way. She reached into her bag and gave her semi-automatic a reassuring pat. She reached a little further, past the glock, the colt, the pepper spray, the hunting knife, where was it? Ah. She uncapped the lip gloss, applied a thin coat to her lips and resolutely strode off. The job of a narcotic officer never ended. Time to find Gershon and save the world. Again.
(CA’s paragraph — feel free to trim; sorry, I said I suck at fiction; plus, I am packing for moving)
Henry paced nervously in the ER waiting room. Detained as an attempted murder witness, he was stuck, in his bunny suit, in the hospital, in a nervous state of mind. Henry, a hypochondriac suffering from OCD, did not like hospitals. Besides, he was under a court order to stay away from buildings with fire alarms. Henry had a compulsion to pull them — the red color, the feeling of a pulled lever, the sirens, the lights… Henry gulped nervously and started pacing back and forth. He was going to stay in control. This obsession had him arrested five times, cost him his job and luxury apartment in Manhattan, estranged him from his family and pet iguana. But today he was going to stay in control!.. Henry entered the bathroom. The first thing he saw was a bright-red fire alarm. Staring at him. Sneering with its lever’s white outline. Inviting. Henry backed nervously towards the sink and suddenly realized that his bunny suit’s hands have no zippers. He had no way to splash some water on his face. A scrubbed-in intern with a walrus mustache opened the door of a stall and dropping “Howdy, partner?” in a thick Texan drawl left the bathroom. Without washing his hands. This was too much for Henry. He turned to the fire alarm and licked his lips, tasting bunny fur. The last thought that entered his mind before he reached for the lever was “Ben told me to try pancakes with sour cream in that Russian place”. Henry filled his lungs with slippery air of the hospital bathroom and pulled. Fire alarm exploded in Henry’s head with hundreds of bright sounds. Loud flashes, bouncing off the white bathroom walls, pushed his tortured mind off the cliff, into the abyss of primeval insanity. Ricardo, a hit man for the Colombian mob sent to the hospital to finish off Gershon, entered the ER waiting room and was knocked off his feet, unconscious, by something bright-pink with big ears that ran out of the bathroom, charging towards the ER exit.
"Pitiful," thought Ira Green. "Simply pitiful . . ." Ira paused for a moment, popping the cap of the little plastic bottle held in one of his sweaty hands. It was empty. Tossing the bottle aside, he reached into his desk drawer and took out a fresh one. Turning it upside down, he poured a generous handful of Tums into his hand.
"What exactly was pitiful?" He mused as he downed a handful of his "candies". To be honest, he was entirely unsure to what he had been referring to - if it the hit man Ricardo sitting nervously in the seat in front of the fold out table in the roach infested back of a cheap Bistro in Little Italy that served as Ira's "office", or if it was his own fate once the bosses heard that the Cocaine they had stolen from the Hasid in Brooklyn was nothing more then confectionery sugar, and the cheap kind at that. Perhaps, it occurred to him, it was an even more profound conclusion about his life in general, as the Mafia's 'Jew' - the accountant for the aging Sicilian dons, and their go between with their contacts amongst their tentative allies - the Druglords of Columbia. "What kind of job is this for a nice Jewish boy?" his mother had once asked him. "Your father slaves away night and day to put you through Columbia - and you can't even get a job as CPA for a local franchise of Corn Friend Chicken? Why couldn't you be more like your brother Arny? Such a good boy that is Arny!"
Whipping his ever sweating hands on the frayed sleeve of his tweed jacket, he reached up to adjust his glasses on the edge of his nose and straighten his hair. My, he thought wryly, the hear plugs were setting in nicely. Taking out another handful of Tums, he returned his attention to Ricardo, who in the silence of the last few minutes, seemed to have been driven nearly mad with fear. Popping a Tums in his mouth, he began to chew as he asked the hit man, "Tell me again why you couldn't finish off that boy?" "It was the rabbit!" Ricardo shrieked in fear. "You got to believe me Senoir! I was goin' to finish the job, you know, and suddenly all of the alarms go off. I don' why they go off, so I freeze. Try to act in'specious, like you say boss . . . But then this big pink rabbit comes running at me. It had big ears, a puffy white tail. It runs right into me, Knocking me down on the floor. I know it's real. I didn't drink any Tequilla or nothin', vato!"
What a mess, Ira muttered to himself. The hit man had lost his screws, the hit was alive, what was supposed to be pure Columbian was from Sugarland, Texas. . . and then there were the other problems - reports that the Israeli Mossad was on their trail - perhaps the Russian Mafia had tipped off its contacts in the Kenesset after his bosses had thrown in their lot with the Japanese Yakuza. Then there was this business with the crash landing the other day in Nevada - the word was that it was something more then a purported "Weather Balloon" - his bosses would want to know if it was connected to this business with the Ithorian Overlords. But that was an entirely different problem. Oy - so many doubts. "Carla, please see Ricardo out," he called to his secretary, "and tell big Guido I'm taking off 'sick' for the rest of the day." One thing Ira was sure was that he would have heartburn soon - if he didn't have it already - or that his Ulcers would act up. Maybe both. Why if his luck held up, he'd get a batch of the Gout too. What kind of job was this for a nice Jewish boy in a tweed jacket, suspenders and hear-plugs anway?
Rabbi by education, Journalist by profession, Blogger by choice.
Torah, Chassidus & the Social Web.
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