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Green Cheese

by Bruce Holland Rogers

My favorite place for setting up my telescope is in the foothills outside of town, on top of the covered reservoir. The ridge line screens out the city lights. The reservoir is a large, flat expanse, so trees don't interfere as much with my view. I have a dark sky, a big sky, for my observations. I can get a lot of my work done.

Of course, I also have Cliff to contend with. He has figured out that on any cloudless night, he'll find me and my telescope here. At some point, he'll emerge from wherever it is that he keeps himself and stroll to the middle of the reservoir. He'll ask me what I'm looking at, but he won't listen to my answer with much interest. He never asks to have a look. He's just being polite, warming up the conversation, getting ready to do all the talking.

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Gift of the Brabblefly


Eddie walked to the edge of town, where the brabbles grow, before the others were awake. He brought a cup of hot coffee from home (single origin, direct trade, organic, light roast) in a cup he stole from Eddie #2, and a pączki filled with the dreams of a huckleberry plant. His plan was to eat the pączki in the brabble field, to dip it in the piping hot beverage he had brought so the sensual liquid soaked through to the huckleberry dreams inside, releasing their silky aroma of lovers regrets.

“Take small bites, Eddie,” he reminded himself, like he had learned in pączki-eating class. “Let the sweet dough disintegrate between the roof of your mouth and your tongue, eyes closed, as the brabbleflies awake, the aria of their morning light surrounding you, filling your heart with the sense of wonder you have lost.”

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The Inside Scoop

The Chief sat behind his plywood desk, sopping sweat from his greasy forehead with a Dunkin’ Donuts napkin. The man was a wet cookie dough sausage with a pushbroom moustache and a bulldog’s temper.

He slammed a doughy fist down and pointed his index hot dog right in my face.

“You’re going to do this story for me, Ace. You’ll do it, or you’ll never work in this town again.”

“I’m done with this town and done with the paper and done with you,” I told him. “I’ve seen too much filth and eaten too much grit out of the gutters of these mean streets to see this thing through to the bitter end.”

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A Blender, A Neurotoxin

The blender had been a Christmas gift from Pete's mother. It was July before he got around to it.

The flashy packaging presented the blender in a proud light, and advertised its superiority. Bar graphs demonstrated its power, and pictures of smiling people brooked no argument. FEED ME ANYTHING! the blender was saying, in a speech bubble.

"Okay," Pete said in answer.

He set out the mighty blender, then consulted the leftovers drawer in his refrigerator. Yams, hardened to stone. A steak with the bone in it. Peas aged into little green BB's. These filled the blender's spacious chamber.

Pete pushed the button, and the motor revved -- zeeeeYEAAAAAAH!

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