Anonymous asked: How are you today Ash?
I’m wonderful! Though this morning I almost pissed myself in bed out of fear because it suddenly sounded like someone was shaking a creepy maraca right next to my head. Then I realized it was just several of my dart frogs singing in unison. At 5AM. In the dark.
How are you, dear? I hope it’s a lovely day for you today.
This morning on my way to the bus stop, I saw a flicker of movement out of the corner of my eye. I turned to follow it and glimpsed a tiny orange kitten tumbling after a sibling on the steps of my neighbors’ building, its mouth open, its legs akimbo.
Furious but late, I ran for the bus.
This keeps happening. Our neighbor has an outdoor cat he refuses to get spayed, and she has kittens every few months like clockwork, and every few months — like clockwork! — Elena and I attempt to rescue as many of the kittens as we can to take them to the shelter. We even adopted one of them: we plucked Winkle off the same steps I saw the new kittens playing on this morning.
I’m frustrated because we’ve reported this to anyone who will listen: the apartment office, the local animal shelter/control, cat rescue groups… and no one seems to be doing anything about it. I’ve been hesitant to put out a trap myself because there’s no way the neighbor won’t see it and not stir up a huge fuss, but at the same time, I’m so tired of seeing tiny kittens wandering around parking lots in bad weather, under cars, with no discernible food or water sources or shelter.
It’s time to put out the trap and go to war.
In the meantime, Elena’s out with a cardboard box in the cold, hunting for kittens.
When I was a kid — I mean a little kid, maybe six or seven — I found myself suddenly at a church function with another kid from my class. I had never before expressed any desire to attend the church, the church function, or even to be near the other kid. We barely knew each other. We came together briefly in our bewilderment, though, on a stretch of bright green lawn before a beaming pastor. “We’ve hidden eggs all around the church,” the pastor told us. We were only two tiny peasants among a horde of other puzzled children. We stared at him, and he waved his hands and said, “Go find them!”
None of us moved. The pastor blinked at us. He was bald and the sun glinted on his shiny head. “Why?” asked another kid. Not the one from my class. The kid from my class was busy picking his nose and wiping it on his pants.
The pastor clearly hadn’t anticipated any questions. “It’s fun!” he assured us. We only stirred when he added, “Whoever finds a purple egg gets a chocolate bunny!”
It was hot. We stood and toddled off in various directions. Adults gave us baskets and smiled at us, and the kid from my class — finger still lodged firmly in his nostril — said to me, “I think this has something to do with Jesus.”
"Okay," I replied. "Who’s that?"
He didn’t know. Dislodging his finger, he examined it, wiped it on his shirt this time, took my hand, and said, “Let’s find eggs.”
We hunted. We had no competition — most of the other kids had already given up and were sprawled in the shade nearby — and so we found egg after egg, bright blue ones, pink ones, orange ones. Eggs red as rubies. I picked a violet one out of a hedge and the dye smudged under my thumb, and all the breath ran out of me and I whispered to the other kid, “Oh, I love Jesus.”
I’ve never had allergies to pollen and stuff before, but this year it feels like someone hit me in the face with a mallet made of angry plant sperm.
Does Claritin work? What about other over-the-counter allergy meds? Any recommendations, peepsicles?
counterpunches asked: Three word prompt: fire, hook, slipper
The knock rouses her. “Snuh?” she says, and sits up, hair clinging to half her face by way of the drool also smeared down her cheek. “Nnn-zhm? Who’s it? Wha’?”
Shadows shift under the door. Someone’s shuffling their feet out there in the hall, and the floorboards creak and Anna squints, waking up a little more. “Anna?” comes the whisper. “May I—”
“Oh, hey! Hey, yeah Elsa, come in, ’s’open!” Anna throws off her covers. The door groans on its hinges as she’s hunting for her slippers and in comes Elsa, hunched up thin in her nightdress, her own feet bare despite the chill. No surprise there. She’s got her arms wrapped around herself like she’s cold, though, and Anna frowns because yeah, no. She says, “Elsa? You okay?”
xekstrin asked: Testimonials, crimson, languorous
As drone season draws near and your panic threatens to explode your bloodpusher straight out between your thoracic struts, you decide to do everyone you know the only favor you can before you’re culled: you cut ties. You sign off every program and device with one simple parting missive. DON’T TRY TO FIND ME OR YOU’LL DIE, you tell your friends. Then you throw everything you own that you can’t carry with you into a pile in the middle of your hive, and you splash that pile with liberal quantities of flammable liquid. You set it all on fire.