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Dawson showed up for work on his first day with a box full of his office things under his arm; mostly highlighters and correction fluid. He was sporting his “shirt n'pants”, a fresh business-cut hairstyle and styptic pencil repairs. He regarded his new colleagues with his mirror-rehearsed squint that pulled his top lip up and put his tongue against his back teeth. He strode directly to the first person who made eye contact, did a sharp backwards nod and stuck his hand out, “Dawson,” he tarded, “First day.”

“Davis,” they pressed palms and Davis tried to keep walking, putting two mental dollars on Day 2 in the Date of Termination office betting pool in his head.

Dawson held on tight and told him all about his last job. He used Davis like a microphone and keyed on aspects he felt would best portray him as competent in an obvious voice that was well loud enough for the room. Davis felt violated as if he were being told a joke he didn't want to hear by a racist who would soon move on to the religious material, or like someone was demanding he do that 'thing' that made everyone laugh so hard one time but is impossible to replicate. Eventually, Dawson stopped talking and released his grip, his eyes bobbed about the room searching for the slighest glimmer of interest.

Davis tossed his durable, 11-pt manila stock folder made of 30% post-consumer recycled material into a plant, grabbed Dawson by the face with both hands and violently kissed him square on the mouth. Davis lifted him off his feet so fast that he dropped his box. When the box hit the ground it spat highliters, broken columns of B8 Bosch staples, and a ruler high up into the air where they all danced at their apex before they fell back into the box like trained dolphins. When Dawson was fired two days later, he cried in front of everyone.

Date Written: March 17, 2005
Author: TheBuyer
Average Vote: 3.7778

03/23/2005 Partytime (4): Third paragraph is mentos fresh. A veritable alpine zephyr. Purrwhooosh.
03/23/2005 Cyrus (4): The box completes the image.
03/23/2005 Phony Millions (4): Lots of really good detail.
03/23/2005 Ewan Snow: This short would be better if you added a couple more clauses to the sentence "He keyed on aspects he felt would best portray him as competent in an obvious voice that was loud enough for the room using Davis like a microphone." Otherwise pretty good short, though it starts stronger than it ends. I'm currently calculating my vote...
03/23/2005 Phony Millions: Yes there were a couple clause ridden sentences there; I had to reread a few. You have to admire the particular sentence that Snow highlighted for not having a single comma.
03/23/2005 anonymous: I flipped it to fix the verb tense from "using" to "used".
03/23/2005 qualcomm: this is an unflattering portrait of the rid, and i think it's really unfair.
03/23/2005 anonymous: Ha!
03/23/2005 Ewan Snow (4): A little bit of an improvement, but still an awkward sentence. 3.5.
03/23/2005 The Rid: Actually, I found it flattering!
03/23/2005 anonymous: I hate this fucking short. Zero stars. And author, I hope you get a splinter in your ass! That's just my opinion.
03/23/2005 Litcube (4): I liked this short! No laugh, but did elicit the huge grin (three star base). Packed with great details (+1). anon_a: Why hate? Is it worth it?
03/23/2005 Mr. Pony (4):
03/23/2005 Jon Matza (3): Buyer, your style gives me hives. "Styptic pencil repairs"? Does this mean he had shaving cuts? Can't you just say that? "...putting two mental dollars on Day 2 in the Date of Termination office betting pool in his head"...I wish you'd just say "he gave him two days, tops" or something. Also, are we to understand Davis lifted Dawson up by his face? 2.93.
03/23/2005 Cyrus: I think Dawson is actually the rid. Where did you and the rid run into each other Buyer?
03/23/2005 anonymous: Yes, by his face, palms on his cheeks, pinkies under his jaw, other fingers elsewhere. Also, I could have been more direct with shaving cuts and whatnot but I talk funny.
03/23/2005 Jon Matza: Humph!
03/23/2005 Mr. Pony: A styptic pencil leaves a telltale white circle; it does the job, but looks distinctly lame; lamer, somehow, than a toilet paper hemoplug. Maybe because a Specific Product With a Very Specific Use is somehow more girly or dandyish than a jury-rigged solution that "works just fine". Not that I ever cut myself shaving. Not that I really need to shave. Not that I even have a corporeal form, anymore.
03/23/2005 Ewan Snow: Pony, are you pure energy these days? Congratulations.
03/23/2005 Jon Matza: OK...but if the D-bone is so eager to please he gets a fresh haircut & brings highlighters it's hard to swallow he'd walk in without having washed off the white o's, doofus or not. (Presumably it's long enough after he shaved for the bleeding to've gone down, right?) In my opinion it's a forced "we're meant to laugh at this loser" joke at the expense of plausibility = net loss. Also, forgot to mention "he used Davis like a microphone", which caused me to arch my eyebrow sternly in disapproval and pace around the room muttering "gracious, gracious".
03/23/2005 TheBuyer: I was mostly trying to portray him as 'big hat, no cattle' - all talk. The kind of guy who, for example, would read an article in soldier of fortune magazine and think he actually could kill a person with his bare hands. That microphone thing is how I pictured it, just some guy talking to everyone in the room but the person he's facing, using that person as a prop.
03/23/2005 anonymous: hey, me too!
03/23/2005 Daphne: I thought the microphone thing was great! I've seen it happen.
03/23/2005 Partytime: So why is the third paragraph so very meaningful to me? Because though it's no epiphany, it is so nerdamn true that loud technically savvy persons bellow their knowledge to(and right past) cringing supply clerks or janitors or whoever. You can hear this creature dissertating about why he thinks a base 12 system is "actually better for intradevice communication." or some shit.
And when I was a lad everyone always made me sing "Oh Tannenbaum" until I couldn't stand the fucking song, and even today certain people want me to recite this certain tongue twister that shall go unnamed. And the longing eyes bobbing around the room are so damn accurate for a merit-badge-seeking dweebe--all my sister's ex-boyfriends and hubby come immediately to mind. And the violation that Davis experienced should be just as prosecutable as his sexual assault on Dawson.
And, Matza, while I agree with you on the writing cringe point, I disagree as far as plausibility of the styptic. A nerd would wear the styptic pencil repairs proudly because he been doing it for years--ever since he was trying to show the girls at the Polytech that he was masculine. It's nerd cologne for Christsake.
03/23/2005 Klause Muppet (4):
03/23/2005 The Rid (3):