Sunday Photo Fiction: The Exception #amwriting #flashfiction #history


Thanks to Alastair Forbes for holding this week’s SPF. 

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Credit: A Mixed Bag

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The White Horse is a popular bar and inn for tourists to stay at while visiting museums and decaying buildings in town. 

Many old ones have been restored in the style of their time period. However, some buildings have rotted away. These past glories are left in ruin because they cannot be torn down as historical sites. 

Although some people wish to restore these ancient buildings, the process of doing this correctly, with trades who are trained in forgotten skills, is frustrating. As well, there are a plethora of permits needed from the city, county, and state, along with, random inspections.

Architects and knowledgable art history professors complain, saying that the quality of work by rare trades is not accurate. Or perhaps, they say the right materials have not been used, despite these materials now being nonexistent. But few so-called experts understand that the price paid for not restoring ancient buildings is having them collapse, having history disappear. 

The White Horse, however, is an exception to such procedures. The popular bar and inn has been passed down from generations of family since the thirteen-hundreds. Over time, the same lineage has updated the bar and inn through each successive family. The building  contains upgrades from the fourteenth century until early 2010. 

For some reason, there isn’t much any government official or anyone else, can say about this. The same family line has lived here for over seven-hundred-years, having always owned the bar and inn. Can the state and historical societies reprimand them now? Not likely. 

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©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved. 

Sunday Photo Fiction: Ancient Treasures #amwriting #flashfiction 


Thanks to Alistair Forbes for hosting SPF.

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A Mixed Bag

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The books were torn and tattered at the edges and it didn’t appear as if they’d been read in sometime. Dust coated the tops and sides, especially the books which stuck out. At some point in their history, the books had been reread a great deal; they  had been well loved.

 Jy peered at the books on the shelf and sniffed at the foreign scent of mildewed paper in the air. He had only heard of books such as these. They were hundreds-of- years-old and Jy treasured them. Few books were published in paper except the reigning government’s: Manifesto. 

He gracefully removed a book from the shelf, surprised by the glossy cover under the dust. He turned to chapter one and started reading. This book was of the fantasy genre and Jy adored fantasy — especially fantasy which hadn’t been altered.

In his world, books were stored on computerized chips in your mind. You sat and closed your eyes, picturing yourself reading the book; that was how one read. Books were easily accumulated but you were only allowed to read approved books. There were millions available, but one could always tell when the regime had made changes in a novel, adding and removing parts. 

Jy came across a word he knew was banned. It read, “Freedom.” He curiously reread the word; his only frame of reference was that it was something of too much responsibility for mere citizens to have.

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©Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved. 

Story Continuation Prompt: Flash Fiction – Escaping the Colony 


Thank you to Wandering Soul who hosts this challenge. This week we are to write a story up to 500 words about the future. The beginning sentence is:

Hundreds of drones zoomed ahead in the empty field, buzzing loudly like bees swarming over a honeycomb.

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http://www.thesixthaxis.com

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Hundreds of drones zoomed ahead in the empty field, buzzing loudly like bees swarming over a honeycomb. The buzzing annoyed Jess and his ears hurt from hearing it.

Jess and Morgan had been hiding in the field, afraid the drones would harm them, especially, in daylight. 

The government deployed thousands of drones and used them to report on people’s activities. A person never knew if they were safe, or if their actions would be deemed breaking the law.

Those in leadership grossly abused their power. The average person tried their best to make it through the day without being told to report for questioning to the enforcement officers. 

Usually, the person who was being grilled, had no idea what they were being accused of or why. People did not have the right to an attorney. There was no actual judges or juries.

As Jess and Morgan watched the drones in the field, night fell and it was time to move. There was talk in the streets, of colonies with democratic governments, a fair judicial system, and even rights and jobs for their citizens. But the two men had to break through the colonies fence first.

Jess and Morgan were ran through the field as quick as they could. The drones saw them and began to buzz around them. “Th-there going to get us before we ev-even reach the fence,” Morgan sputtered in terror.

“No, we’ll be fine.” Jess said breathing heavily where they hid. “They haven’t reported us or shot at us. They’re not government.”

Both men ran and the drones suddenly started shooting, not at Jess and Morgan but at the fence. They cleared a pathway for them into the countryside. 

After a days walk, Jess and Morgan with the drones following, came to a colossal walled in colony. They didn’t know if this state was a democractic or another totalitarian state.

Large stone gates opened wide at a drones beep and Jess and Morgan walked inside the colony entrance. The drones beeped to the guards who nodded and smiled at Jess and Morgan as they entered the new colony.

Looking ahead of them Jess and Morgan were shocked to see a normal city with houses, a theatre, grocery stores, skyscrapers, and other buildings.Where they came from the colony was a war zone.

 A blue drone spoke to them, “We’re happy to have you in our city. Our colony wages war on your home colony and its dictatorial leaders. We try to free as many civilians as possible, from your government’s abuse.”

“Peace and democracy will reign when we win the war against your leaders and we’re close to defeating them. For now be at peace in our colony. You’ve rights and freedoms here.” 

What the drone said fulfilled both Jess and Morgan’s dreams.

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©Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved.

Poem: Let us not Hate


It has been a problem throughout history, racial profiling; bigotry and hatred.

People make a certain “ethnicity” seem bad and immoral.But the reality is every ethnicity has some bad people.

And this doesn’t make everyone who looks like or is the same race as someone terrible bad.  You cannot judge a person on the status of their race.

We would have no ethnicities left if we hated a race everytime some of their community did something wrong.

And I’m begging you to look back on history and don’t make the same mistakes.

Hitler believed in the Arian race, he killed all the Jews in WWII, 6 million of them, how did the world let that happen?

Then German girls who had no choice but to sleep with Nazi officers were left to die, naked, their heads shaved in shame. Germany turned on it’s own people too.

And when Japan bombed Pearl Harbor, we put them all in internment camps. As, if all Japanese in every country were responsible for their homeland leaders decision.

And what of Saddam Housein and all the people that were his own people, that he killed ruthlessly. The US provided him with weapons and he came back a ghost to haunt them.

And looking back to the American Civil War, the South would not give up it’s slaves. These African Americans had no rights. They were raped, worked until death, their d families torn apart, sold as if they weren’t people.

And it scares me that a man like Donald Trump would say the US should keep all Arabs out. The man is not a genius at the best of times, but the blind follow the blind.

When all people from Syria need help, because their country is turning on itself. When ISIS preaches death to all who are not them, can you blame people from getting the hell out.

When America needs to open it’s arms, we could have an intolerant ignorant pompeous man running the show. Someone please use small words and tell him all Arabs are not ISIS or terrorists.

We need to defend our countries against the issues that would destroy us. But we need to consider North America is a diverse place.

People did not travel here so they could be abused, cast aside, and be racially slurred. The actions of a few or many are never an entire people’s fault. We have choices, we are democracies.

Let us choose leaders who welcome diversity. And have a heart to help people. Those who live in our own lands and those who wish to be citizens.

Put yourself in another person’s place. If your home was destroyed, wouldn’t you want others to help you build a life, for you  and your children?

Let us not hate.

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©Mandibelle16. All Rights Reserved.

Writing 101 – White Wedding


www.weddingvenice.com
http://www.weddingvenice.com

Many people don’t like weddings, they think they are tedious and a waste of time and money. But not me. I love weddings. The events leading up to weddings are exciting and I adore seeing how happy all of my friends have been as they walked down the aisle in beautiful,lacy,beaded, silky, and tailored wedding gowns.

The second event for Korinda’s wedding and by far the funnest  (we thought) was the stagette at Northland’s Race Track. I arrived about 3:00 pm in my new navy and white striped and fitted dress and patent navy pumps to see the girls who had arrived before me betting on the horse races at the race track. More girls arrived and everyone was wearing a fascinator and lovely dress to go with the racetrack theme of the stagette.

There was a wonderful dinner of delicious food and toonie drinks at the bar. We were all tipsy and having fun playing games and as 6:00 pm chimed, we all got onto a school bus stopped at a liquor store and drank as we drove to the Legislature grounds for stagette pictures. There were many wonderful water features as we took pictures, often our feet were bare in the water as we held up our dresses so they wouldn’t get wet. We giggled and all climbed into a giant pool where we took a group picture of all of us holding up our dresses half way up our thighs and smiling. It was a picture that captured a wonderfully fun and lovely moment for all of us invited and for Korinda.

I think it was because we were having such a good time that we didn’t notice the men in suits and sunglasses as we were all tipsy and giggling like fools. We started to notice them when they closed in around us and it seemed a bit weird to us that there were so many of them. They looked corporate and Korinda was extremely upset that they were imposing on her wedding event. Her mother Annette and some of the other Moms who had come along went to talk to some the suits to see what their enclosure around us meant.

” The young women and yourselves aren’t allowed in the fountains,” said a dark-haired man in a pinstripe black suit. His tie was dark purple and his shirt a dark purple too. To anyone else, he and his colleagues would’ve looked like members of our wedding party, but they weren’t.

Annette got angry at  the suit in the purple tie and shirt, ” Listen, you, this is my daughter’s wedding, and there is no law against going in those fountains and even if there were I’m sure no one would mind for stagette or wedding pictures. It’s a special time, people aren’t going to care.”

The suit shook his head and grabbed Annette’s arm and held it hard. ” Listen lady, this is corporate and government property now and your trespassing. Not to mention your daughter needs our permission to get married and to have wedding events, something she and her husband haven’t done.” Annette looked confused. The purple shirted suit spoke on, ” We are the law now, we are in control, and we say what you can and cannot do. We’re the government, and this is no longer a democracy. This is a corporate military state, and in a military state, people who are smart fall in line.”

We all heard what the man articulated to Korinda’s Mom and both Korinda, her Mom, and her bridesmaids were angry and ready to take the lying *ssholes in suites on. But a wisp of fear also passed through those of gathered at the stagette on the Legislature grounds. Where was the military this man talked about and who was the man in the purple shirt who addressed us?

As if to answer our questions, another man wearing a purple shirt and tie asked one of the bridesmaids named April, where we were going next, ” to a club, downtown,” April mentioned scathingly. The man nodded and took a fuming April by the wrist. He pulled out a handgun, as did the rest of the corporate men in suits, and lead each of us onto the bus. They took away all our liquor, dumped it all in the grass, and sat on the bus with us as us girls silently looked at each other and bit our lips in fear. The men accompanied us to the club Korinda had chosen. They stepped outside the bus and watched as we all entered the club. We could not quite comprehend these men as they put their guns away and told us have a safe time.

The first man in the purple shirt, wrote Korinda a ticket for taking her stagette pictures on Legislature fountains. No one was allowed on government property without permission or proper identification, apparently. The ticket was a warning and he advised Korinda to apply to one of the newly appointed judges for her marriage license as her wedding was coming up in a month and bit. He told her a bit of cash would get the license through on time on top of the regular fee.Her old license was null and void.

The men holstered their guns and got into black Sedans that had suddenly appeared out of nowhere in front of the club. We all watched in awe as the men in suits drove away and we were left standing in front of the club not sure what had happened. Apparently, overnight their had been coup and Alberta was now an independent state-run by a corporate militia. How strange and terrifying was that realization and poor Korinda, her stagette had started off so well.

Automatic – Hey Whatever Happened to. . .


” . . . It all just seems so good the way we had it back before everything became Automatic…” – Miranda Lambert

HealthSometimes life speeds up and sometimes life slow downs. I feel as if this summer has sped on by and I haven’t had the chance to enjoy it. I have spent a great deal of time sleeping and in bed and the situation has not become better until this last week when thinking back to when my health began to slide down hill I remembered we lowered one of my medications. Once I began to increase that medication I have become much healthier. I look better and feel better and even though I’m not  good enough to go to a class at night or study for a few hours everyday I feel hopeful for once that I can go back to that point. In short, I feel better now, I feel like I can do activities again and I don’t need to sleep for more than an hour or so in the day.

But I was thinking about this song  Automatic by Miranda Lambert, it’s one of my favorite songs lately, and I thought that she makes a sewing machine oldstrong point. Where would we be without all our technology? Was life better when we could just take time to do an activity instead of having technology making it easy to do in seconds?

If you were to ask my Mom who is a quilter I’m sure she would say that the new sewing machines are better and easier to use then the old sewing machines that her Grandma used or even the sewing machines they had in 70’s when she was sewing her own clothes. And I have to say I most definitively like a Smart Phone over the flip phones or original bulky cell phones that some of my friend’s parents had in the 90’s.and early 2000’s. I think it’s so easy that I can go on the internet, that google maps can show me where to go to get somewhere from where ever I am, that all my music is on my phone, that I can have my own phone and # and have that privacy and that I can take notes on my tablet;  I can bring my phone or tablet where ever I go.

iphone_5s_6_grassI understand Miranda Lambert’s view because many times I see people walking and not looking where there going, talking or looking on their Smart Phone. And it seems  like even though we have computers and all this technology we are having worse effects on the environment. For instance, a paperless office was once surmised to exist one day and we are only using more paper then ever.

Additionally, I think that sometimes the ability to order anything you like on the internet and have it sent  to your house in 2 days is not necessarily a great thing. It’s a way I got into debt myself in the past and I think sometimes it’s too easy to buy something because we don’t think about whether we need or would actually wear or use the items we buy. Also, sometimes we spend as much money as we save returning items we bought on the internet.

And doesn’t it seem that this new technology seems to break down more than old technology  – photocopiers, computers, phones, appliances, and even cars. We have things that are “automatic” but what is the good if these items are not quality. My parents first fridge lasted them 30 years, now the appliance companies are aiming to make stoves that are no longer working in 10 years. Isn’t this wasteful?

But I think there is another meaning to the song Automatic. I think “automatic” is a way we live our lives, an attitude. Like are bored womantechnology that has gone automatic we are acting in away that is automatic. We don’t think about what we say to other people. We are too caught up in our technology and the other parts of our life.

We don’t even bother to talk to each other in the same household sometimes we just send a text. We act the way that the media tells us — books, movies, video games — we are sometimes lacking originality and thoughtfulness. For example, maybe we think that champagne and roses is the right way to propose to our partner but we don’t consider what our partner would in their own mind find romantic, maybe we don’t get to know them well enough or talk about the situation enough first.

We give gift cards which may be nice, instead of being thoughtful about a gift, It is as if these things have become ingrained in us and become automatic. We hold stereotypes that the media personifies, maybe about people with certain illnesses like AID’s or mental illnesses and people of certain nationalities. I think the song Automatic talks about a way of thinking and acting towards one another just as much as it talks about our technology.

hospitalOne good example I see lately of things having gone automatic is healthcare in Canada. Should it become automatic for us to wait 14 to whatever hours in an emergency room when we really need to go to the hospital? Some people need help now and you are just making their illness worse by making them wait. Some people for instance aren’t able to wait that long in a waiting room, they are too sick and too frail.

There has to be a way that we spend more money on healthcare, so that there are more hospital beds for people and more doctors and nurses to take care of them. Should it be automatic that a person that it so depressed they are going to kill themselves has to wait to get into the psyche ward? Or a person who needs a kidney replaced has to wait forever until they are near death to get a kidney replacement?

These are just thoughts; this is something I have seen on the News lately. And it disgusts me. And I really think it has become automatic to act certain ways in the healthcare system just as we act automatic towards one another and with our technology. This is something I see in the overworked hospital staff, in emergency workers, in a government we elected that doesn’t seem to care enough. What do you think?

As for my health, I’m glad that I never had to go to the hospital because who knows if I would have made it  in? I’m glad I can deal with my illness from my home. and I hope that you can live your lives better than in an automatic mode.