Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Shameless Story Stealing

Writers are a nefarious breed. Always pausing and looking vaguely off into the distance with minds who knows where and fingers flying over the keyboard writing who knows what. They’re always watching, always scheming about what their next words will be. Writers are indeed a nefarious breed:

A nefarious breed with a fatal weakness for a good story.

They are drawn in by them, like the smell of home-cooking after a long day. When they walk in the front door, brushing off the snow and the chill, and get that first whiff of struggle, character development, and denouement, Pavlov’s dogs had a better chance of holding back their saliva after they heard the dinner bell.

On that note (get it?!) here are the story tidbits I gathered (re: stole) this week.

Ben’s conversation with the Kenyan “official” wielding an AK-47 ended with him capitulating.
“Fine! Your system is corrupt and it stinks! Take your money and let us go.”
An American woman got into the elevator and was closely followed by four Japanese men. They began to speak about her in their native language. Quickly their language became degrading, sexualizing the woman. Before their florr, one of the men turned to her and—in English—spoke kindly.
“You don’t understand Japanese, do you?”
She looked him in the eye and responded in steely, fluent Japanese.
“Every word.”
And she left.
            The slide was huge—you could probably have fifteen kids lined up on the ladder up to the top—and in the summer it could burn your buttcheeks off, the metal was so hot. We got twenty minutes for recess and then Mrs. Mattausch blew the whistle. Of course, the kids at the top could slide down, and the rest of us got into line. Well, Anna Hiddenger slid down and ran around and slid down again.
            Her bravery was short-lived.
            Mrs. Mattausch had seen.
Sometimes, said Pooh, the smallest things take up the most room in your heart.

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