New flash fiction either in Podcast or print format. This new and original story, while a work of fiction, is based off a fever dream I had when I was in the hospital. Coming damn close to death in April made me think about a lot of things and people in my life. In the aboriginal community, dealing with resiliency, there is the idea we have to be like the American Buffalo or Bison. The Bison faces into the storm, walks through and toward it. By doing so, it gets out of the storm faster.
And sometimes it sucks where part of that storm is seeing a sibling with a terminal illness knowing that by this time next year, she won’t be around. It sucks knowing everything changes, yet nothing is truly lost. And senior citizens plant trees the shade of which they know they will never sit in.
So, what trees shall I plant? That’s why I write even sometimes when there is a storm in my soul.
Also… I’m also on TikTok now, I’ve cut short my hair, I’m still getting used to the supervisor position at work (more hours, slightly better pay, but still protected by the union), and I’m trying to remember that the future is an adventure as the seasons change. With that, Vivaldi’s Four Seasons recomposed by Max Richter
The Missing Menu – a new flash fiction available in either podcast format or in text format! This flash fiction covers the thoughts and musings of some…thing as it’s sitting down to a meal.
Posting this was my challenge – and finally, with the help of some Ultra Sour sativa and playing “Eye of the Tiger” on a loop, I got it online. Although the tenth repeat the bird got pissed and started squawking in protest.
Why the delay in posting new creative? Well…I’m working on other stuff offline, and my laptop was going senile. So June was a write off as I tried to work around it. Fortunately a friend who works at Best Buy suggested I switch my hard drive out for a solid-state drive. And whoa, boy! Behaves about the same, but faster on startup. Unfortunately, while they were able to preserve a lot of my files, my desktop and any apps I need to download (Firefox, Audacity, GIMP) had to be updated.
Which also caused some issues. Yet, I persevered! True, I had to sigh and quote Dorothy Parker “What fresh Hell is this?” but…I’m also going to look at the Library of Stories page and think about how I could better organize it…maybe a table of contents? We’ll see.
Karenpocalypse, or Dicks Demise is now online! So today I decided to list off the ways you can access this new original story about why you should be nice to essential workers like retail staff all the time:
– Evankayne.com – either Library of Stories for the text, or Podcasts for the podcast
– Podbean – here’s the link to this story specifically, and the link to my main Podbean site with other stories.
Also, pay what you can to support me by visiting my Ko-fi account – it’s that green “buy me a coffee” button located on the side (desktop) or the bottom of the page (or you can click this link).
As for the whole “Karen” meme, first off I’m including “Dicks” whenever I discuss Karen behavior. Why? Well, “Dick” behavior was there first. By behavior, I mean the self-centered “it’s all about me and you making me happy” behavior some people exhibit towards people working in the service industry or arts (so, retail staff, doctors, nurses, artists, actors, restaurant staff, etc.).
The “Karens” and the “Dicks” of this world want what they want now. If they’re caught in a mistake, they never admit they were wrong. They’re always the victim of bad service. And they ALWAYS have bad service. When I worked at Shell, I arranged a celebratory dinner for 100+ people in our lunchroom. It was transformed into a dining hall with white tablecloths, silverware and china. The food was amazing from start to finish. And yet, a “Karen” whined that her dessert was a little dry, therefore her entire meal was ruined. She was quickly put in her place by some other coworkers and myself, but you got the impression that she didn’t change her opinion, she just learned in this situation and with these people, she should keep her thoughts to herself.
Look, sometimes you have to make a complaint. But treat the person to whom you unload like a friend or family member you respect. Ask for other solutions. Yes, if you’re not satisfied with the answer at one level, do not immediately “ask for a manager”. Try “you’ve been helpful, but can I see if the manager has any other solutions? That way you can get back to helping other people.”
If the answer is “No” accept that. You could try calling corporate or the owner, but try weighing the cost of your time versus how much this purchase or service cost you. Because I feel, and I’ve seen that essential workers have zero patience for dick behaviors and karen entitlements. When you ask “may I speak to a manager” you may get the answer of “No”. When you snipe “Well, I’ll never shop here again” you may get “Good, because you’re banned from this store.”
We’re all under a lot of stress. Be nice. Now and in the future.
Today’s flash fiction has a fantasy flavour – The Sorcerer’s Balance Sheet – is available in podcast and in text format.
Story size differences were explained to me as such: a novel is a house with a yard, furniture and occupants; a short story is the description of the activity and items in one of the rooms; and a flash fiction is walking past that room and glancing in as you go past. Today, we’re looking into a magical professor’s office.
A new flash fiction – Resetting, Again – is now available in the Library of Stories, and in audio format on my Podcast page.
In popular science fiction, any time they have problems with the technology which allows the crew to travel vast interstellar distances in the blink of an eye, it’s usually fixed by the end of the episode. Yet, I’ve a feeling when things go wrong in space, they’ll go wrong in ways we can’t fathom. If you like my creations, come back to EvanKayne.com or my Podbean page on a regular basis, and support me on my Ko-fi account.
Alrighty – a new podcast in our lovely Podcasts section: Left Foot, Right Foot. I read off a story I’ve previously posted in the Library of Stories which gives a look at the solution to crash landing on an alien world if you’ve got powered armour. Hint – it involves a lot of walking, and madness.
I was going to post another story I wrote over the weekend inspired by grocery shopping in the time of the plague, but I realized that it needs a few weeks to ripen. True, all my stories are “works in progress” but sometimes I need to put something new out of my mind for a few weeks while my brain gets some needed distance.
As ever, if you like what you see, follow me here, on social media (today linking to my Twitter) or on Podbean…but I’d really appreciate it if you tipped me by pressing on the Green “Buy me a coffee” button to go to my Ko-fi account and donate what you can.
Tomorrow, between taking the next chapter on my Gale SEO course, I will also (spoiler) post Day 3 and 4 of the Alone Plague Journal.
Alrighty, I’ve posted another original flash fiction in the Library and read it so it’s also a podcast. I guess this makes it episode 4. I’m still learning….I’ve got the podcasts connected to Spotify, Google Play and I think iTunes. That last one is weird because on the Podbean end it’s showing some activity from Apple, but yet I can’t get it to load my feed when I do it through my Apple ID. Something to do with image size, but I may try again tomorrow.
Besides the flash fiction and podcast reading of it, here’s a bonus feature – last Friday (March 27) I had a bit of a panic attack, and forced myself to read a description from The Anti-Nihilist trope description page from the TVTropes website and offer my thoughts on it and Existentialism, given the current COVID-19 pandemic. I read it on Facebook Live because – as I live alone – I needed someone to make me accountable to work through this freakout. So while it’s on my Facebook, here’s the YouTube video. Watch for me saying “absurdity” and the bird agreeing with a “raawwr!”
Okay. So I finally managed to figure out posting for podcasts and the software. Go to the Podcasts tab to see the latest. If you like what you see, click the Ko-fi button or on this link and tip what you can. My plan is to post a podcast – be it a story, commentary, what not on a weekly basis.
For all those people talking about putting out a podcast: while you have mentioned the effort and time needed, not a single one of you at ATB sessions or Calgary Public Library seminars or on Lynda.com training or online mentioned the sh!tshow that is all the technical side. Audacity, RSS, Google Play, Audible, iTunes, Podbean etc….[reaches for aspirin]
Metaphorically speaking it was like this:
Me: How do I drive this car?
– Automobiles drive on roads. Roads are flat surfaces that can be made of asphalt, concrete, gravel or even dirt.
Me: Sure. But how do I drive this car?
– Automobiles can come in 2 to as many as 18 wheels, and are powered by an internal combustion engine, except for those who use hybrid or electricity.
Me: How. Do. I. Drive. THIS. Car?!
– Automobiles can be in various shapes and sizes
Me: [screams in frustration]
“I never look back, darling. It distracts from the now” – Edna Mode
I’ve got for you a new speculative fiction along with some random thoughts below. But first, the story: Corporate Bliss – a Story Told in Emails. It’s about capitalism, life, and depression all through email conversations in an office setting. Comments welcome here or on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram…
And I’m not depressed, but Winter always makes me reflective. I wanted to post some memories my mother has shared with me. I then thought, “What about me? Who will I share my memories with?” I then thought of other LGBTQ2SA folk with no kids. Or of couples who were childless. Or even single people. Who sings their stories after they are gone?
“Who cares” but as time goes on, and the world changes, often it’s the slice of life that give colour to the past. Telling you I remember being a teenager and on a bus with school mates singing along to The Pointer Sisters “Jump” and you can say “So what?”
Yet. Point out that at the time, I was still dealing with my sexuality. I had been bullied in elementary. I was mostly ignored in Junior High, but wasn’t part of the “In” crowd. In high school, playing football suddenly made me part of the “In” crowd because I was a jock. And it was….an education in tribalism, and why it was and still is, an utter load of bullshit. Hating someone because he/she/they are not part of your religion, your family, your nationality, they don’t like sports, they look different, etc. etc.
So, with that as context, when I say it was a bus of football players in gear, singing and jumping to that song “Jump” after coming home from a football game, the colour in this slice of the past is bright, as it was a happy moment for me – I felt I was part of something, part of a crowd, a team. Yet it’s a memory tinged with sadness as I remember feeling lonely because it was also a lie: I made sure never to let my eyes linger on another guy while in the change room, knowing I was different even while on the outside I appeared to be one of the crowd.
Future News Bulletins from 2050: a new story in pictures on the Multimedia tab! Similar to an earlier story of mine “Virtual Afterlife” it’s a story from the future told in pictures. Why? I was thinking of the whole piece in terms of Twitter blurbs/news aggregator websites and as I’m a writer and not a designer, this is the best I could do. I also had a bit of fun with the fake hyperlinks beneath each story.
I would like to add – you can probably guess the real life political family to which I refer. Growing up in Western Canada, I’ve found it amusing how some people easily demonized this family and from there I formed a “what if” scenario. While I am a progressive thinker, what bothers me is the increasing hyper-partisanship among voters, politicians and talking heads. You see it on both sides of the spectrum – either the individual is “Great Leader” or “Great Satan”. Instead we should be looking at and judging the person and their actions – despite whatever attachment you have to him/her/them.
I’m also throwing these images up on my Instagram feed.