Tuesday May 31st, 2011

The exercise:

Welcome to the final day of May (already?). Give me two haiku about: the surgeon.

Planted more beets and carrots today, as well as our selection of pumpkins and ornamental gourds. Then we worked around the yard this afternoon, mostly in the rain. I'm ready for the sun the forecast is calling for, and I suspect the plants are as well.

Game one of the Stanley Cup Finals is tomorrow night in Vancouver. At last.


Scalpel held steady,
patient safely in dreamland...
it's time for some fun!

*     *     *

Don't give me that look.
I just need one little drink
to steady my nerves.

Monday May 30th, 2011

The exercise:

Write something which takes place at: the circus.

Kat and I had lunch at the beach today, which we managed to squeeze between resting around the house. We were considering going out to watch a movie this evening, but Netflix won out.

We watched Dirt! The Movie. I think our farmer is showing.


"I haven't been to the circus since I was a little girl!" She leaned against his arm as they entered the massive tent, smiling dreamily up at him. "Thanks for taking me - this is such a surprise!"

He grunted in response as he checked the seat numbers on their tickets. Looking up, he spotted their section and led her towards it. She was too excited to notice his sullen silence.

"Do you know if they have trick riding?" she asked, her head constantly moving as she tried to take it all in. "That was my absolute favorite when my dad brought me. I used to pester him all the way home, pleading for him to let me learn how to do it."

The man looked at her out of the corner of his eye but continued to say nothing. It would all be over soon, he reminded himself. Just hold on a little longer.

A few minutes later the lights went out and the crowd was filled with excited whispers. Then the plump ringmaster was illuminated by a massive spotlight and they were properly welcomed to the show. Under the cover of darkness, the man finally allowed a smile to appear on his lips.

"For our first act of the evening," the ringmaster bellowed, "please welcome Kole the knife thrower! Now, I understand that someone in the audience has volunteered to help Kole with his act... would this lovely young lady please step forward?"

"You're up," the man said with a sincere smile as his wife was caught in a second spotlight. "Have fun, sweetie."

Sunday May 29th, 2011

The exercise:

Let's go with: the wreck.

Today we planted more corn and potatoes, and got some more pepper plants into the garden as well. We're getting rather close to filling up the entire garden, which will be nice. Then we can just concentrate on weeding and harvesting.

Tomorrow is a day off. Not sure what we'll be getting up to yet, but I'm sure it'll be good.

Feel free to continue mine - I'm afraid I ran out of inspiration.


They woke to find an unfamiliar car parked in their front yard, steam still rising from beneath its hood. The man went out to see if anyone was inside while the woman called the police.

The man couldn't understand how the driver had managed to get the vehicle on to the lawn. The back left tire was missing, both front tires were flat, and, as best he could tell, there was no steering wheel. He pulled open the door and looked inside, hoping to find someone who could explain but found no one.

His wife watched from the safety of their living room, worrying at her bottom lip with her teeth. The operator had told her to stay on the line but she had hung up without really hearing the instructions. She watched as her husband popped the trunk and went around to look inside.

When she saw him climb into the trunk she couldn't stop herself from going outside in her night gown to yell at his foolishness.

By the time the police arrived ten minutes later, they found no sign of the car or the couple who had reported it.

Saturday May 28th, 2011

The exercise:

A four line poem about: blue.

I missed being at the market today, but it was the right choice. We would have been miserably cold and made enough to pay for gas and maybe a little extra. But we'll definitely be there next week.

Plus we were very productive around here, planting corn, squash, and melons while dodging raindrops.


I'm thinking of you
And feeling blue -
But then you kiss Fred
And I see red.

Friday May 27th, 2011

The exercise:

Four lines of prose about: the rental.

Boston vs Vancouver in the finals. Can't wait for Wednesday night.

The forecast for tomorrow morning is wet and cold, so we're skipping the market this week. People just don't come out in that kind of weather, and we don't have anything to sell that won't keep for next weekend. Hopefully the sun comes out for that one.


The man behind the car rental desk swallowed noisily as he held out the keys to the obviously unimpressed customer. His fingers trembled slightly, causing the keys to jingle unpleasantly in the otherwise silent room.

"A Pinto?" Henri said, his cell phone already in hand. "I'll have your head on a platter before the sun goes down."

Thursday May 26th, 2011

The exercise:

The word of the day is: tame.

With more crappy weather all morning and most of the afternoon, Kat and I spent some time in the greenhouse potting up eggplant and pepper plants. Things calmed down after dinner so we went back out and did some work in the garden but it wasn't exactly warm.


Just before lunch today I loaded up the truck with various bits of junk and then early this afternoon I took it to the dump. While I was dropping off the recycling just outside the gates, I spotted maybe five or six marmots hanging about. Up to no good, no doubt.

Anyway, I went in and made my first stop at the concrete station. I started dumping out the blocks that had been taking up space in our yard, when I noticed a couple of the marmots had come over to watch me. Cute, right?

Right. Except these guys are way, way too tame.

One of them came over and stood right where I was throwing pieces of concrete. So I started throwing them a bit more to the right and he went over to check that out.

Those blocks were in the 30 pound ballpark. One in particular was probably closer to 40. In other words, if I hadn't been watching out for this marmot's well being, he would have gone squish.

Come on, little dude. Show at least a little shred of survival instinct. Please.

Wednesday May 25th, 2011

The exercise:

I think it's time to have another go at the random CD prompt.

So go ahead and randomly (however you want to manage it) pick a song and use its first line as your own (giving credit where it's due, of course). Then carry on from there however you like, in poetry or prose.

Got the rest of the tomato plants out in the garden while dodging raindrops today. Also got some much needed weeding done, as well as some work in the yard. On the hockey front, Tampa Bay won tonight, so they're going to game seven against Boston.

I'm sure the Canucks won't mind the extra rest.


John Legend, The Roots - Hard Times

Cold, cold eyes upon me they stare. Everywhere I look, they are watching me. Accusing me. As though their fates are my doing.

But I didn't pull that trigger, never held that knife. My only goal is to help find the men and women who are responsible for these pale, lifeless bodies. To bring them justice? I don't know about that. Maybe just to help me sleep at night.

The door swings open behind me and I turn to find another body being wheeled in. My assistant doesn't say a word, doesn't even look at me. He just makes his delivery and walks out again, off to finish some test or another.

I look at the sheet covering this latest victim, the way it conforms around the nose and toes. I wonder what his story is - I can already tell it's a man. Maybe I've been at this job for too long.

But I can't call it quits now. I owe these lost souls answers. They need me.

And maybe I need them too.

Tuesday May 24th, 2011

The exercise:

Two haiku about: overtime.

It took a Vancouver goal with 14 seconds left in the third period to tie the game up, and a crazy bounce that led to the winning goal in double overtime, but the Canucks are going to the Stanley Cup Finals.

So. Happy.


I should be home now,
my work over and done with.
At least the pay rocks.

*     *     *

Oh my dear Canucks,
I think that it's safe to say:
I'm good for grey hairs.

Monday May 23rd, 2011

The exercise:

Today we write about: the bull.

We planted precisely two hojillion tomato plants in the garden today, and yet there are still some left to go in the dirt.

It was quite the nature-filled day. Aside from the story below, we also had a bird fly into the house through the open side door. After hovering for a moment while we stared at each other in surprise, it decided to try flying out the kitchen window. Which was shut.

It took a little coaxing to get it back out the door, but at least it went. I do like birds, but I prefer them in their natural environment.


So the good times are officially over out in the garden. No more afternoons out there; it's hot enough that we're back to mornings and evenings only. In case we couldn't figure it out on our own, we got a little help today.

We spotted our first snake of the year shortly after lunch.

And it happened to be a bull snake. I'm not including a link because I don't want to look at it again. Suffice to say that it is a snake that is, generally speaking, unnecessarily long and, this one specifically, far too friendly. I don't know if it just didn't realize I was standing there, and I don't care. It got too close before deciding to head off in another direction.

Shortly after that I found what he must have been looking for: a pocket gopher in the process of digging out a hole. Link included because those things are adorable.

And, unfortunately, rather destructive. So we left nature to run its course.

Meanwhile, I took comfort in knowing that little guy had a whole lot more to fear from that bull than I ever will. It's small solace, but I'll take what I can get.

Sunday May 22nd, 2011

The exercise:

Let's go with: in command.

Because after winning today, the Canucks now have a commanding three games to one lead in their series. One more win and they're in the Stanley Cup Finals.

Kat and I rested this morning and then did some work in the greenhouse in the afternoon - planting more herb seeds and potting up pepper plants to sell at the market next weekend. And now I'm too sleepy to think of a decent way to wrap this up, so I'll just get on with it, shall I?


The five men sat around the conference table, dressed in suits and looking bored as they flipped through the reports arrayed before them. Five matching coffee cups sat empty on the table, but so far only one attendee showed any sign of needing to go to the bathroom.

Several minutes passed before they stopped pretending to read their paperwork. After another minute they began exchanging silent glances. Finally one man had enough and called the meeting to order.

"All right," he declared in a confident tone. "Now that we're all here... aren't we? Yes, of course. Well then, let's get this meeting underway."

He looked around the table expectantly but no one spoke. In fact, he was quite displeased to note that they were looking at him with that same expression.

"Wait a second," he said slowly. "Just who is in command here?"

The meeting concluded a few moments later without another word being said.

Saturday May 21st, 2011

The exercise:

A four line poem about: the puppy.

We had a better than expected market this morning, which was certainly nice. But even without that it felt great being behind the table again and seeing a lot of familiar faces.

Plus there was a girl in our area trying to sell the cutest puppy ever. I didn't ask how much it would cost because that would have lead to us bringing it home and we're not quite ready for that yet.

Anyway, I've been up since 5:30 this morning, so...


This little creature,
I cannot deny,
Controls my actions
With his puppy eyes.

Friday May 20th, 2011

The exercise:

Four lines of prose about: the reporter.

The Canucks lost tonight, but I'm hoping for them to bounce back hard on Sunday.

We're heading to the market tomorrow morning with a lot of tomato and herb plants, along with a hearty helping of rhubarb. We know it won't be a big business day, but we're excited to get back there.


With the daily deadline minutes away and his editor wearing a trench in the hallway outside his office, Eric continued to fight a losing battle against fatigue. The perfect phrases and descriptive words that normally came so easily to him appeared to be hiding behind leaping sheep and fluffy pillows.

With a shake of his head, he forced his attention back to the screen in front of him and wiped a bead of sweat away from his forehead. He had no choice but to come through for his newspaper; he knew his job depended on getting the report on the traveling poodle ballet show impeccably immaculate.

Thursday May 19th, 2011

The exercise:

Today we're going back to: continuations.

If you've written something recently - either here or elsewhere - that felt incomplete, feel free to carry on from where you left off. If nothing comes to mind, you're always welcome to continue on from where I finish.

I've chosen to continue my scene from yesterday.


He grunts in response and shuffles toward the fire in a crouch, his fingertips brushing against the cave floor. He studies me for a moment without blinking and then turns his attention to the flames. I decide to try again.

"Dad? It's me, Mitch. Are you okay?"

I watch my father as he sniffs the air, his head angling upward and cocked to one side. He closes his eyes and goes perfectly still, then suddenly whirls and scrambles out of the cave on all fours.

My feet feel like they've grown roots as I stare out into the night. It's a struggle to get air in and out of my lungs. Thoughts refuse to gather in any semblance of order. Finally the words that I've been pushing away squeeze between my lips.

"Oh no... he's been infected."

Wednesday May 18th, 2011

The exercise:

Let's go with: the necklace.

The Canucks came through with a big win tonight to go up 2-0 in their series. The next two games will be played in San Jose, so we'll see if they can keep their momentum going in enemy territory.

Another day of garden and yard work in the sunshine today. Tomorrow we'll be focused on preparing for Saturday, when we attend our first farmers market of the year. We're really looking forward to being back there.


I open my eyes and confusion sets in immediately. Where am I? How did I get here? And what - I'm not sure I want an answer to this one - is that smell?

With an effort that feels far too taxing, I sit up and look around. I appear to be in a small cave, the opening about ten feet away, a large fire burning between me and there.

"I must be dreaming," I mutter as I push myself off the dirt floor. My vision swims a little but otherwise I'm doing okay. I take a step towards the cool night air and then stop as a man enters the cave. He has a thick beard, is shirtless, and a necklace of human teeth is clinging to his throat.

But I still recognize him.

"Dad? What's going on here?"

Tuesday May 17th, 2011

The exercise:

Think of a situation or an event. Now give me one haiku from an optimist's perspective, and a second haiku from a pessimist's point of view.

After being a bit dark and rainy yesterday, the sun came back out to play today - and it's looking to stay that way for the foreseeable future. This pleases me. And hopefully the veggies as well!


They pulled my numbers?
Great, now all of my friends will
become gold diggers.

*     *     *

My winning ticket
means no more debt and Mama
can retire at last!

Monday May 16th, 2011

The exercise:

Write something that involves the colour: yellow.

Day off today. It was good.


They dared call me yellow,
But never to my face;
For they knew if I heard,
I'd put them in their place.

In a box six feet down,
Not a tear would be shed;
For my only response:
A bullet in the head.

But they're all real careful,
And I'm grateful for that;
'Cause the truth of it is,
I'm just a scaredy-cat.

Sunday May 15th, 2011

The exercise:

Let us write about: the giveaway.

San Jose scored the first goal of the game tonight off of a rather brutal giveaway by Vancouver. Thankfully it didn't end up costing the Canucks, as they came back to win 3-2.

It's looking like it's going to be an exciting series.


Business had been slow all morning, but Adrian wasn't ready to give up. He had complete confidence in the ad he'd placed in the paper - it was just a matter of time and patience. Customers would be battling for a place at the cash register any time now.

Approximately fifty minutes after this thought meandered through his mind the silver bell over his shop's front door jingled, bringing Adrian back to the waking world. Rubbing the sleep from his eyes, he sat a littler taller behind the counter.

"Good morning," he said with his best smile. "How -"

"It's afternoon," the man with the bristling black beard informed him.

"Right, of course it is. How can I help you, this fine afternoon?"

"It's raining out."

"What do you want?" Adrian snapped back.

"I saw your ad." The man paused to wipe his nose with a soggy sleeve. "I'm here for the free stuff."

"The free... no, not quite. You have to buy something in order to qualify for the giveaway." Adrian forced a smile onto his lips before spreading his arms wide. "Anything at all. Have a good look around, I'm sure you'll find something you'll love."

"Nah, screw that dude." The man didn't even look around. "I ain't paying nothing for none of this junk."

While Adrian was busy trying to figure out if all those negatives canceled themselves out, the man left the shop without another word. With a heavy sigh, Adrian went back to waiting for his next customer to arrive - hopefully a paying one.

Saturday May 14th, 2011

The exercise:

A four line poem about: dancing.

The Canucks are back in action tomorrow night, but this evening the other two teams in the NHL's final four took to the ice. Tampa Bay took game one over Boston rather convincingly, which made me happy. I'd love a Vancouver vs Tampa final.

Spent some time working on the yard today before heading out to the garden to do more planting. We're finally feeling like we're basically on top of things again.


What is he doing?
Is that the Monster Mash?
That's not it at all -
He's just got a bad rash.

Friday May 13th, 2011

The exercise:

Four lines of prose about: the backup.

Things seem to be back to normal now, after Blogger was unavailable for over 20 hours starting yesterday around noon. Wednesday's post briefly disappeared but is back now, sadly sans comments - though they're saying those should be back sometime this weekend. I also back dated Thursday's post to when it would have gone up had things been working.

In my almost three years of use, that was the first time Blogger was down for that kind of time - hard to complain about that kind of reliability. In fact, if that doesn't happen again for another three years I'd be rather pleased.


"You've got a backup plan if this doesn't work, right?" Doug asked over the roof of the taxi cab we had just climbed out of.

"Why wouldn't this work?" I countered, pulling the megaphone out of my backpack.

"Ha ha... oh no, you're serious," he said, the colour draining from his face. But it was too late - I had already aimed the device at the White House and had begun professing my love to the president.

Thursday May 12th, 2011

The exercise:

Now that Blogger is finally working again (though I think Wednesday's comments are gone forever - argh), I'd like to try something new. I'm calling it: out of context.

The idea is to take things that might be said in a provided location or situation that elsewhere would be worrying, strange, inappropriate, or just plain old silly. Hopefully my example will make that clearer.

We'll begin with: in the kitchen.

The Sharks won game seven, so they'll be Vancouver's opponent in round three. I can't wait :)


"So I just cut 'er in half and scrape the insides out?"

* * *
"Damn it. They're making me cry."
"Maybe you should stop cutting them."
"Not an option. They need to be in tiny pieces."

* * *

"Great, it's spitting oil at me again."

* * *

"First you smash 'em against this pan. Right? Okay, then you empty them into the pan. Still with me? Good. So then you scramble them up - sometimes you beat 'em first, but I'll leave that up to you. And then you finish 'em off by eating 'em. I like mine with a bit of salt."

Wednesday May 11th, 2011

The exercise:

Today we write about: the lie.

We've been watching Better Off Ted on Netflix and the last episode we watched tonight dealt with the (bizarre and often hilarious) repercussions of a well-intended lie. And so here we are.

The wind was howling for most of the day here, but it was still quite warm. Nothing like the near 30 degree afternoon we had yesterday, but comfortable. Other than the wind, obviously.


It was such a simple lie -
I complimented your tie.
Now you wear it every day...
My headache won't go away.

But I have a cunning plan!
I shall institute a ban
On all awful fashion flukes
That make employees puke.

Tuesday May 10th, 2011

The exercise:

Two haiku about: the athlete.

With Detroit winning again tonight, the Canucks will have to wait until Thursday to find out who they'll be playing next. Either way, I suspect it will be a very tough series.


He trained for four years
for this Olympic moment.
Come on, no pressure.

*     *     *

They pay him millions,
millions watch his every move...
what are we doing?

Monday May 9th, 2011

The exercise:

Today we write about: going online.

The Canucks won tonight, so they're officially on to the third round for the first time since 1994. They'll be facing either San Jose or Detroit - the Sharks are up 3-2 and I'll be pulling for them to knock off the Wings.

Though I wouldn't mind them taking seven games to do it.


So I've been talking about setting up a farm blog for quite some time now. I could look up the first mention of it on this blog, but I'm choosing not to. It was that long ago.

Anyway. I had a Blogger site mostly put together a few months ago but I was still struggling to find a layout that I was happy with. And then local interest began picking up for us to have some sort of weekly pickup system and suddenly that site just wasn't going to be enough.

Shortly after that, I noticed Google's promotion Get Your Business Online. Free domain name for a year, a significant discount on a year's worth of hosting (the free hosting deal was a bit crap, to be honest). The timing couldn't have been much better.

After a brief discussion with Kat, I signed us up and began transferring over the content I'd created on the Blogger site. Since then I've been fiddling and polishing and nitpicking and obsessing over details. But enough of that already.

Welcome to the online home of Prana Farm.

Sunday May 8th, 2011

The exercise:

Happy Mother's Day to all the moms out there :)

On a completely unrelated note, today's prompt is: crooked.

I finished reading The Girl Who Played With Fire (whose title character is often described as having a 'crooked smile') tonight and all I have to say is: it's a good thing there's a third book. Talk about an unsatisfying ending.


The painting in the dining room had been crooked for as long as any of us could remember. No matter how often it was straightened, it would inevitably end up hanging lower on the right. One day Dad threatened to put a nail through it to keep it level but I don't think his heart was really in it.

Besides, I'm pretty sure even that wouldn't have done the trick. The damned thing was hell bent on making its observers tilt their heads just so in order to look at it properly.

I don't know who bought it - maybe it came with the house when we moved in. I could appreciate why the previous owner would want to escape that stubborn painting.

Nothing would have ever changed if that earthquake hadn't knocked it off the wall. But it did, and so the next day was when we finally discovered that the right half of the frame was made of gold.

Saturday May 7th, 2011

The exercise:

Our four line poems this week shall be about: the factory.

The Canucks decided they wanted one more trip to Nashville before moving on to the next round. I really hope this one doesn't go seven games.


All the little workers
Are lined up in a row;
They work hard together
To make my perfect foe.

A Very Bored Batman

Friday May 6th, 2011

The exercise:

Four lines of prose about: the fight.

Because I'm listening to a Foo Fighters song as I write this.

Today we got back to work on the fence around the garden after focusing on other things for the last little while. I don't know if we'll get it finished tomorrow, but hopefully it'll be done by the end of the weekend.


It wasn't much of a fight, really; just one punch and then it was over. A few lost teeth, nothing particularly memorable. Well, for me at least - I just threw the punch. 

I imagine the guy who took it in the kisser might disagree with my assessment.

Thursday May 5th, 2011

The exercise:

Your prompt today: the letter.

The Canucks won again tonight - in regulation time, no less - so they're up 3 games to 1 now. Their first shot at sealing the deal comes Saturday night in Vancouver. Hopefully it only takes one try this time.

It was a perfect day to spend working outside, so that's what we did. Life is good.


The letter did not arrive by the normal route. No stamp adorned its envelope, and it was not found in the mailbox attached to the gate but propped against the front door. There was no return address either, but I had grown used to that.

I stooped to pick it up and then eased myself into the rocking chair lurking on the porch. It took a few tries to pry it open - my fingers seemed to have a mind of their own by then. As I unfolded the paper I caught a faint whiff of vanilla and my eyes closed for a moment to allow the memories to flood in.

There was no name at the top, but there didn't need to be one in order for me to know that I was the intended recipient. I read it over quickly, the words squeezing together to make unpronounceable and unknowable words. Then I started over from the beginning and forced myself to slow down.

Three years had crawled by since the last letter but she wrote as though no time had passed at all. She provided no hints as to where she might be, didn't bother asking questions I wouldn't have been able to reply to. But it was enough for me to know that she was still alive.

And that the cops hadn't tracked her down yet.

Wednesday May 4th, 2011

The exercise:

Let's go with: the scar.

Went to the local writer's group meeting this morning and had a good time. We did a fun writing exercise, but it doesn't really translate over to here since we had to pair up and go back and forth with it. I'll try to come up with something similar though.

Did some work in the garden this afternoon and enjoyed being out in the sun. Fingers crossed, but it's starting to look like spring is here to stay.

Oh, right! As promised, here's Sir Phillip:


The man brought his car to a halt at the edge of the field and got out without shutting the engine off. After looking up and down the road to make sure he was alone, he stepped onto the grass and began making his way toward the smoking heap a few hundred yards away.

The sun hung low in the sky to his right and his nostrils were filled with the smells of scorched earth and overheated metal. A hundred yards from the wreckage the man came upon the initial impact site. The ground had been scarred by a deep, smoking rut that lead the rest of the way to... whatever it was that had fallen from the sky.

He continued on without hurrying his pace, struggling to remain calm. He was not the sort of man that believed in aliens, not that he'd ever given the matter much thought. Before that moment, anyway.

"Probably just a meteor or space junk or something," he muttered after a backward glance confirmed no one else had arrived.

When he was less than twenty yards away he was able to make out a shiny metal object, shaped like an over-sized headache pill. Two more trembling steps got him close enough to see that it had cracked open and that there was nothing - and no one - inside.

The sound of a car door slamming shut spun him around. He was just in time to see his car accelerate down the road.

As best he could tell from that distance, no one was driving it.

Tuesday May 3rd, 2011

The exercise:

Gimme two haiku about: the actor.

The Canucks won in overtime tonight after losing game two in double overtime, so they're up 2-1 now. Every game so far could have easily gone either way, so I'll definitely take two out of three and hope things continue to go their way.

Oh, I got a picture of Sir Phillip today! Remind me to share it tomorrow, if you'd be so kind.


He's in his trailer,
refusing to leave until
he gets more cookies.

*     *     *

The director quit
so he's in charge now. Expect
a lot more close-ups.

Monday May 2nd, 2011

The exercise:

I am so disappointed and, quite frankly, pissed off at my country right now, it would be easy to go off on a rant. But I'd rather focus on the positive. So the prompt today is: breaking new ground.

Seriously, though. How do you get a majority government with only 40% of the vote?


Moving on.

Also: yes, I know how it works. It just makes me angry. And want a new voting system. Anyway.


They said it would never happen. That it was a terrible idea. That it was absolute insanity.

Well, who's laughing now? Huh? That's right. I don't hear anybody saying anything.

Sure, maybe that's because they've all gone to bed, or are off doing other things since they've lost interest in this project. But my point remains: they said I'd never build an apartment building on top of the old cemetery, but that's exactly what I've done!

Now, who wants dibs on the penthouse? Huh? Come on, don't be shy.

No, Mr. Angry Ghost, you can't have it. Why? Because your money is worthless.

Anybody else? Anybody at all...

Sunday May 1st, 2011

The exercise:

Welcome to May! Let us write about: the lion tamer.

This morning I picked up the rest of the soil we needed, and then after lunch I finished filling up our backyard boxes. Kat's already got a herb plant in there (Italian parsley, I think), and I'm sure we'll have them packed full of goodness real soon.

It was a beautiful, sunny day, but tomorrow is expected to be rather crappy. I think I shall take it off and rest up.


"They'll never eat it."

"It's worth a shot," Tom said with a shrug. "I have to try. I can't take it anymore."

"It's your funeral."

"Thanks for the encouragement." Tom pulled two boxes out of his plastic grocery bag and took a deep breath. "All right, here goes nothing."

"And here I am, without any popcorn to enjoy the show."

"I can see now why the poor clowns are so terrified that you'll steal their jobs," Tom said before stepping into the lion enclosure and closing the gate behind him. Shaking both boxes so that their contents rattled loudly, he called out, "Okay, you smelly-breathed bastards! Who wants a Tic Tac?"