Posts Tagged ‘comedy’

I once had a little red notebook. It could rest quite comfortably in the palm of my hand. I was only twelve at the time this all happened but I had pretty small hands. Anyway, this book had been in my family for generations. Lots of the pages had been torn out. It didn’t seem like much when I found it amongst the boxes in the attic. We were clearing out junk and I pulled this little red notebook from the dustiest box, hidden in the darkest corner.

What’s this?” I asked my mum.

Her eyes widened. She was never one for dramatics but I saw a true look of fear on her face that day mixed with general bewilderment. “That was your gran’s,” she replied.

My gran had lots of weird belongings. I remember some of the strange statues we had found after she moved to sunnier climates. They looked eerily like little people carved out of wax. Some some of them had needles sticking in what I would imagine would be very painful places. Mum melted all of the dolls down and threw them away. My gran was a little weird. I always thought so but as a kid it was really fun to be around. When I stayed over with her she would show me all sorts of old books and tell me ghost stories. I said I could handle it but she told them so vividly that I would wake up in the middle of the night and swear that the ‘goober man’ was watching me. ‘Goober man’ was one of her favourites. He was a dusty old creature who stalked the ancient streets where my gran lived. The fingers and toes of little girls – just like me – were his favourite delicacy. He had long thin strands of hair covering a liver spotted head. His eyes were bulbous and yellow. His fingers were long and he had sharp teeth for gnawing on little bones. He sounded awful. I didn’t want a visit from him. As I said gran loved telling me stories of ‘goober man’. She would see how scared I would be getting and she would laugh. She was a little strange.

Can I keep this?” I asked my mum of the little red book.

Mum wrinkled her nose. “It’s all rotten and there are hardly any pages left.”

I agreed but I did like the red cover. It gave the notebook some importance. Mum shrugged her shoulders and continued sorting the junk so I slipped the book into the back pocket of my jeans and helped.

That night when everyone – mum, dad and my little brother Ray – had gone to sleep, I kept my night light on and finally had a look at my new red notebook. There was an inscription inside that read:

ENEMY LIST; ENEMIES BEWARE. GONE FOREVER.

This actually made me smile. Even the most patient and tolerant of us would love the chance to make certain people in our lives disappear. One name came to mind – Stacey Willen. She was a nasty girl in my class who had being going out of her way to make my life a misery since we first started school. She would tease me about my hair, my clothes and pretty much everything about me. She had her loyal band of supporters who laughed at her jokes that really weren’t that funny. They were all so eager to gain her approval that they wouldn’t even help me up when she pushed me into the mud. They just stood there like grinning hyenas like it was the best comedy in the world. Just that day I had been sat underneath the tree reading a book. It was a very sunny day. The tree was offering a nice cooling, shady breeze. I was enjoying my reading, blocking out the nonsense screaming of my classmates in the school yard. Stacey must have spotted me from across the yard and felt unable to leave me content. She marched over to me and snatched the book from my hands.

Give me that back!” I protested.

Stacey sneered. She wasn’t particularly bright. She opened the book in the middle and spat on the pages. Not quite having caused enough havoc she turned to the end and ripped out the last three pages. Seeing I wasn’t reacting she got bored and threw the book back at me, hitting me hard on the arm.

Staring at my gran’s enemy list I took a pen from the night stand. It had thick black ink. She would have to be the first name. STACEY WILLEN. Content with myself I turned off my light and fell into a comfortable nights sleep.

The next morning when I arrived at school I had half expected Stacey to be there to greet me, somehow knowing I had added her to my enemy list. To my surprise her usual band of supporters were gathered but there was no Stacey.

She has just disappeared. Her parents say she was in her room last night and when they went to check on her she was gone! They think she has ran away. The police were around and everything,” Stacey’s appointed ‘second in command’ was telling the others.

Stacey disappeared? After I had added her to my enemy list? Surely this was just coincidental. I knew my gran was weird but surely she wasn’t that weird?

Mr Perlman was the caretaker at the school. He was always shouting at the kids and he spat when he spoke. He was a bitter old crank and never had a nice word to say about anyone, even sweet old Mr Faben – the headmaster – who was technically his boss.

He sat at a table in the entranceway making sure the students made their way to class in a timely and organised manner. He wore a battered old hat that was once red but now yellowy and in desperate need of a wash.

Move it along Wilson!” he spat at me even though he could clearly see I was moving to my first class. I turned and looked at him to verify exactly what it was he was shouting at me for. I had after all just crossed the threshold into the school. He pointed savagely at his brown forehead. “Are you a moron!? I said move along!”

I shook my head and grunted. I took out my red notebook and smiled to myself as I wrote down, in heavy letters, MR PERLMAN. It did make me feel much better. I walked along to my class. If I had turned at that moment I would have noticed the seat where Mr Perlman had been in just moments before, empty except for the battered old hat.

That afternoon over lunch I saw Mr Faben wandering around the hall looking for Mr Perlman. I didn’t think anything of it. I just saw it that the student body was getting a break for an afternoon both from Stacey Willen and Mr Perlman so it was win win. I overheard the girls at the table next to me discussing the maths test we were to have later that afternoon. They were in my class, they knew me well by name but never invited me to join them. It seems they thought I was a little odd. They hadn’t met my gran. As the girls left the lunch room, offering me but a fleeting glance I began to think of how under prepared I was for the maths test. I and many twelve year olds would much rather be doing anything else than sitting a maths test so for kicks I took out my red notebook once again. This time I added MISS PARSON AND THE S32 MATHS CLASS to the enemy list.

Eventually the bell rang and I swung my bag over my shoulder and took a deep breath. I arrived at my maths class and it was empty. Everyone had gone, even Miss Parson.

Whilst the school was in turmoil trying to find out where an entire class of students, a rookie maths teacher and the caretaker would have disappeared to I slipped my red enemy list back into my pocket. I was going to have to learn to use it wisely…

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I was a bad seed.

My whole life I wasn’t what one would call an angel. So it came as no surprise when I passed and death said,

It’s Hell for you my dear friend Gus. You have been so bad you must take the bus.”

Not even the courtesy of a ride of a quick journey into the seventh circle for my eternal damnation.

So there I was, at the bus stop for the direct line to Hell. Torrential rain was falling and there was no shelter – although it did have the strong smell of urine that would normally accompany one.

Of course the bus was over an hour late. I was cold, miserable and just wanting to get to Hell already.

Death took some glee in my punishment.

That’s what you get for being such a shit! You’re not going to like this, one little bit.”

The bus arrived. The most broken down, hideous piece of metal on four wheels you could ever hope to step aboard. The driver had a face so sour it could peel an onion.

Get on!” he snapped. “I ain’t got all day.”

Death pushed me on board.

The seats were torn, broken and mostly filled with graffiti.

REG WAS ETERNALLY DAMNED ERE’

Death slumped beside me.

I hope you are ready to press that bell. The next stop for you is the depths of Hell.”

Rude driver, broken chairs and a sticky floor you wouldn’t dream of touching. The bus to Hell was pretty bad. I think I’ve been on worse.

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CThere once was a princess who lived far away.

She was in love with a prince so they eloped one day.

On the way to the church, they received terrible news.

A dragon was loose so the prince had to choose …

PNB

The much loved poem, The Princess and the Beetle, joins the Myths and Tales web series and we couldn’t be more excited.

The official release date of the web series will be released soon so don’t forget to check back.

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Coming soon as a web series from Torrance Media. Directed by Leo ST Paul (The Walk) and written by Vivika Widow. Check out the trailer!

Granny was one hundred and four years old. She wasn’t actually my gran. She was my mother’s, mother’s mother and Granny agreed that that made her pretty great.

I’ll live forever!” she quipped on her ninety eight birthday. When she reached one hundred and two people started to agree with her.

When she turned one hundred and four she thought enough was enough. It was high time she had a funeral.

Give me my favourite blanket though. It will get cold in the winter.”

We all thought Granny was crazy but she insisted. When this particular matriarch had made up her mind there was simply no changing it.

It wasn’t the most orthodox of ceremonies. Granny waved from her casket with a great big smile on her face.

Granny, you aren’t going to have them screw that casket down are you?” I had pleaded before hand.

Now that wouldn’t make much sense now would it?” she returned with a wry smile. “How am I supposed to get up and walk about? An eternity locked down would get a little tedious.”

And so the funeral service went ahead. No one shed tears. It wasn’t what Granny wanted. Truthfully, I don’t think people quite knew how to feel, especially when Granny climbed from her casket to give a few words on her own behalf.

At ninety eight she had claimed she would live forever. She is now one hundred and twenty four and still going strong. She will fight for her rights as an otherwise deceased. She had a nice funeral and she chose a beautiful spot for her final resting place where I can visit her anytime I please. She still gives me tea and biscuits.

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These days we have so much at our hands.

We even have devices that make all of our plans.

We live in a world of electronic coffee pots,

video chatting doodaas and face calling what nots.

On the computer, information at your fingertips,

paying your bills and giving weight loss tips.

But what happens when the technology doesn’t play nice?

Your old friend ‘the freezer’ could just as easily make ice.

When the computer fails, cutting you from the rest of us,

and you actually have to go to the station to book a train or bus,

remember there was a time before social media,

when libraries held more than the wikipedia.

When the intel powered lap top is smashed on the floor,

and the smart phone has been launched out of the door,

when none of the devices talk to you in the kitchen,

when an urgent message is needed – you can always send a pigeon.

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It was my thirteenth birthday and I was spending it with my Aunt Lola. She was a quirky old lady who had known me since I was born. She wasn’t really my aunt at all but she had been such a close family friend she earned herself the title. I had come to live with her after an unfortunate accident with a moose and a very high cliff claimed the lives of my parents.

Well Loopy,” she said. (This was just a nickname she had for me. My real name is Lucy) “I can’t believe you are thirteen years old already.”

Given that I was so accident prone, having broken several bones several times, I was pretty mesmerised that I had reached teenage years too. Aunt Lola always made a big fuss of me on my birthday. She had no children of her own so all of her affection was aimed towards me. She gave the most random and strange gifts each year so now that I was a little older and a little more ready for her antics I couldn’t wait to see what was in store. She put an envelope into my hand and kissed my forehead. “I hope you like this one.”

My hands began to shake. Given my aunt’s fondness for all things odd there was no telling what the envelope contained. Therein could lie the secret to a number of mysteries. It could hold the key to eternal life. It could be a coupon for 10% off at any local clothes store. I tore open the envelope excitedly. A shining slip of paper fell onto my lap. I picked it up allowing the coloured paper to delight the eyes. On that special paper read the words, ‘Special Access to the Museum’. Well it wasn’t the secret to the universe but it was a great idea none the less. I was the strange kid who would rather sit in the corner of the playground reading about battles of old than play with the other children. I would much rather hear what ancient Greek philosophers had to say than my fellow classmates who stood at the edge of the football park picking their noses.

There was no time to lose. I had heard on the radio the week before that the local museum had just opened a new exhibit on Ancient Egypt. I grabbed my shining red rain jacket that was water proof but still light and airy. I pulled on my backpack which had the emblem of several superheroes embroidered on it. Aunt Lola had been complaining of what she called ‘the hardships of older ladies’. I wasn’t sure what exactly this meant but to combat it she had to lie with her feet elevated and a piece of silver on her forehead, counting backwards from one hundred.

I decided to leave the Egypt exhibit to the end. It had been busy when I arrived with business men awing at the new set up and mothers being dragged by their progeny because they thought it looked ‘cool’.

The day began to wind down. The museum emptied itself of the day trippers and quietened. As I walked through the main foyer the rubber soles of my shoes squeaked. I saw the fresh sign that directed the way to Ancient Egypt.

There was a lot of gold around. The walls were covered In hieroglyphs. I couldn’t tell if the curators had actually read the hieroglyphs or if they were merely there to impress the visitors because from what I could read they told of a bathroom disaster somewhere off the banks of the Nile.

As I absorbed all of the knowledge that the exhibit had to offer I heard the doors to the section close. I was the only person around, living at least. The lights dimmed except on the large mummy that was encased at the end of the hall. His face had been preserved all that time in a stern expression. The accompanying information explained that his name was ‘Ahmose’. He had been a fisherman but not a particularly good one. His people saw him as cursed, a jinx if you will. Ahmose was responsible for all the ill fate that befell them. Poor Ahmose. It seems he was accident prone like me. Because he had bumped into a builder, causing him to fall, destroying the temple that was in construction it seems he was now preserved for people of my year to gawk at his stupidity. They took jinxed folk very seriously in those days.

My head was buzzing with all the warmth, knowledge and dusty artefacts that the museum had to offer. I made my way back out to the main hall intent on catching the bus home. I pulled open the door but it was locked. ‘Surely they would check everyone had gone before they locked up,’ I thought. There was a heavy smash. My heart leapt from the steady thud of a tortoise to the gallop of a hare. I could feel a presence looming behind me but I couldn’t bare to look.

Argh!’ cried a dusty, throaty voice.

Slowly I did turn. Ahmose was now standing upright for the first time in many years. The paper that gave me special access to the museum slipped from my pocket. Ahmose reached down to pick it up with a crunchy crack of his mid section. He clasped it between the remains of his fingers and held it out to me.

Leave me alone!” I screamed. “Help!” Surely the museum wasn’t deserted.

Argh!” Ahmose replied.

With a quiver of my extremities I reached into my pocket and took out my mobile phone which Aunt Lola insisted I carried in case of emergencies. I was pretty sure that being attacked by the undead could very well be considered an emergency.

Hello?” Aunt Lola answered.

Help me!” I cried out.

What’s wrong?” she asked still calmly balancing the silver on her forehead.

A mummy! Its came to life. I have to get out of here!”

Most people when they tell their aunt something like this they either think they are crazy or attempting a practical joke. Not my aunt. She returned as though it was an everyday occurrence. “Do you like him?” she asked.

Like him? Its a mummy! He’s going to kill me!”

Aunt Lola groaned. “Oh don’t be so dramatic Loopy. He’s your birthday present. Don’t you like him?”

I stared at Ahomse. He stumbled backwards almost tripping over his own left foot. “Argh!” he groaned again looking at his left leg. “How many people can boast having their own mummy,” continued my aunt.

Not many,” I agreed.

Enjoy,” she said and hung up leaving me alone with the dial tone and my mummy.

Ahmose lifted a piece of pottery from the shelving. It slipped from his fingers and smashed on the floor.

My most immediate problem was devising a plan to get out of the museum that looked possibly locked, take my mummy on the bus and get home whilst not getting caught for thieving from the museum.

Next birthday I’ll just ask for clothes?

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I was just a little kid when I first realised I had the power to bring things back from the dead. It’s not a skill that I would put on a job application or anything but it is definitely something not many people can do.

My beloved gerbil, Flower Pot, died and like most kids losing a pet I was distraught.

We’ll put him in a nice box and bury him,” mum had said softly.

Just put him in the bin.” My elder brother was not so sensitive.

I hadn’t been able to bring myself to move Flower Pot. When he started to stink we all agreed the time had come.

I lifted Flower Pot from his cage.

He was a good gerbil,” I muttered ceremoniously. Then I felt his little foot twitch.

Don’t be silly,” said dad. “That gerbil is long gone.”

I was almost at the point of agreeing when Flower Pot twitched again. I almost dropped him when he flicked his little ears, opened his beady eyes and turned over.

He’s alive! He’s alive!”

Mum, dad and my brother all shared a shocked expression that could only have been heightened if it had been me who had come back from the dead.

I grinned. My pet was safe and sound. His furry little body was warm again. He gave a squeak. I gushed. Then he sank his teeth into my finger. I had to shake him off. It took dad and my brother’s strength combined to pull the blood thirsty rodent from me. Flower Pot fell to the ground. He ran across the room. In the commotion the chair was knocked over, landing on the gerbil. Flower Pot still ended up in a box in the yard that day.

When word got out that I could bring pets back to life I was inundated with requests. I tried to explain that Fluffy and Snowball wouldn’t be the same but people were so attached to their animals who was I to stop them?

When Mrs Albot at number twenty four asked me to bring back her boa constrictor George, I had to call it quits. There was already a monster rabbit terrorising the local kids and a vicious goldfish in the pond in the park. We really didn’t need a 7ft reptile with a taste for flesh slithering around.

I hung up my walking dead pet business and life carried on as normal. That was until I met Harry.

Walking home, clutching the straps of my backpack and whistling to myself I passed the church. There was a teenaged boy sat on the steps. He was weeping behind a mop of black hair. His arms were tucked inside the sleeves of his hooded jacket.

Are you okay?” I asked. I loathed to see a stranger in trouble.

He looked up at me teary eyed. His eye liner had smudged.

It’s my girlfriend Zoe. She’s gone!”

He removed a photograph from his pocket. It was of a girl who would have been very pretty if it weren’t for the black curtains of hair almost concealing her entire face. Two blackened eyes peered out and black painted lips pouted.

She was so young. There was so much ahead of her.”

I felt sorry for him. My aunt said my ability was a gift. I wasn’t so sure. She hadn’t seen Flower Pot almost rip my finger off. Then again, I hadn’t tried it on humans before. Maybe this time it would be different.

The boy led me to the open casket that Zoe lay in. She looked peaceful. Her face was as pale as it always had been. She wore her signature black. Judging by the photo the girl had been preparing for her funeral her entire life.

I touched her forehead. Harry gave a gasp that echoed through the church as her eyes opened. She sat up like a villain in a vampire movie. Zoe reached her hands out and Harry helped her out of her satin bed.

It was quite a romantic scene really until she lunged forward and tried to chow down on his neck.

Yeah, she may get a little bitey,” I warned.

Are you feeling okay?” he asked her.

Urrggh,” she replied.

Harry turned to me. “What is wrong with her?”

Considering she was dead not a few moments ago I think she looks great,”

Urrrrgghh!” she agreed.

She won’t make much of a conversationalist and you will have to stop her biting people, but all in all you have her back. She looks zombielicious!”

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