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Exercise #12: Fear of Water

Tomorrow the god will show his face in the shadow of the big temple. Then the priests will feed us a meal of corn and beans and give us a drink from a gold cup, wash us, paint our faces with the signs of Kukulkan in red and blue, and dress us in gold and feathers. And then they will lead us to the cenote.

I want to believe I will have the courage walk on my own legs and that they will not have to …more

Exercise #11: Favorite Thing to Do in Your Favorite City

I’ve decided to return to the online workshop on which I was working when Hurricane Ike arrived last September. Had some trouble with the first prompt, though. My first attempt turned into unpublishable erotica. Here’s my second attempt:

Fragment #2

I want all of my life to be like these moments:

  • The day that Continental canceled our flight out of Rome, so we spent the day exploring Ostia. We surprised ourselves with how much fun we could cram into one unexpected extra day of vacation.
  • The day you led me through rush-hour traffic to Griffith Park, then showed me where the trail began. I was energized by your kindness.
  • The day the cold front blew through the city, and then you took me to your soccer practice. It was too cold for me to spend two hours waiting on a bench, so I wandered the unfamiliar neighborhood until I found a coffee shop open. Then I came back and climbed up and down the pedestrian staircase to to the road high on the hill above the soccer field to keep warm. While I walked the stairs, I had a heart-to-heart talk directed at a silent God. I told him that I thought he was irrelevant, and that I’d listened to his people and their bad ideas for long enough.

Great News!

Although God had clearly outlined His plans to kill 500,000 people in southwestern California yesterday, He must have changed His mind at the last minute.

I hope the FBI is keeping an eye on the fellow who writes the web site to which I’ve linked above, because he makes the Unabomber sound quite sensible. I also hope the FBI is keeping an eye on God, just in case the other guy is right about all the terrorist threats in the Bible.

50/50 Exercise #37: Wrong and Right

Dear sir:

Next creation? If you’ll pardon my French, you have got to be out of your blessed MIND! Have you completely forgotten how we reached the impasse at which we now find ourselves?

Let Me refresh your memory. The last time you decided to try your hand at creation, I attempted to outline for you a number of suggestions in the form of a PowerPoint presentation that you chose to completely disregard. I believe that My ideas were very reasonable, and as you will probably recall My saying (since you are omniscient and whatnot), …more

50/50 Exercise #2: Lead Line: “It’s going to be different this time…”

It’s going to be different this time. I’m going to be more patient with my next creation. I’m going to play the “merciful and just” role instead of the “angry and vengeful” thing. I’m not going to give them tests they can’t help but fail. I’m not going to throw temptation in their way every time they turn around, then blame them when they fall. I’m not going to demand sacrifices—no first-born sons, no bloody, smoldering animal parts, no prophets or messiahs to be swallowed by whales or nailed to crosses. I’m not going to require them to glorify me. I’m not going to ask anything of them at all. I’m going to recognize their limitations and try to be okay with it. I’m not going to shroud myself in mystery. I’m not going to leave any doubt about …more