*Stories

Alright, brief trigger warning for a rape joke mention.

Health class right? We’re going through the dating and relationship unit, and this guy - this guy who is a TOTAL asshole starts making all these horrid jokes about rape.

And for background about this absolute moron of a creature: talks over the native students in history class bc he’s “1/17 Cherokee” (???) obviously not, he’s white as hell with brown hair blue eyes. Although he’s a friggin high schooler he’s been known to pull girls hair and laugh about it. He argued that my friend (who is Muslim and wears a hijab) be kicked out of school for having a pocket watch (this was right after the clock “bomb” incident with that elementary (middle school?) kid) and y'all just get the idea, this guy was douchebag supreme and the only ppl who like him were other future alt right douchebags.

So finally he makes a comment and said “you know if girls don’t want to get raped they shouldn’t wear tiny dresses at night. That’s like walking through the ghetto in a KKK hood.”

So me, being the foolish high school freshman Tumblr user with this grand delusion that this couldn’t possibly have any bad consequences for me and that everyone and their mom would start clapping, gets up and walks to this idiots desk. I had had the last straw.

I said “well maybe if you didn’t want to fucking get decked you shouldn’t run your mouth about girls that are “asking to get raped”“ aaaaaaand I decked him. Real hard. Kids in the bad could hear my fist collide with his cheek.

What I though would happen: the class and the teacher would start clapping at my Bravery and Sjw Passion to deck a rape apologist and he would have a talking to after class like in those obviously fake Tumblr stories when they were still a thing.

What actually happened: school police escorted me out of the classroom and I was suspended for a week and had to write an apology letter to this goblin.

Moral of the story: don’t punch people in class. Tumblr sjw lied to you.

Follow up 1 year later: my dad is apparently sitting outside the school with the same police officer bc some kid had slashed one of my tires and he had been stopping by to drop some stuff off in my car. So him and the school officer are out there talking, and officer mentions: "Heisler? Aren’t you the dad of the kid who punched that boy in health class?” And my dad, keeping he’s cool goes “yeah, that was mine.” The officer pauses then tells him, “I couldn’t say this at the time and I shouldn’t say it now so don’t tell anyone but I’m glad that renville kid got what was coming to him.”

This is written for @gallusrostromegalus who is sick and apparently really enjoys chickens, so. Fair warning that you are going to read about my family and chickens. I don’t normally write stories on tumblr, so here’s hoping you enjoy the narrative despite the shoddy storytelling.

To begin, I should start with my mother the Undercover Hippie. I spent a good portion of my childhood thinking my mother was normal because she didn’t dress in tie-dye, but as an adult, I’ve realised there are several things that marked my mother as one of those Boulder Hippies. The types that aren’t really Hippie in the seventies sense, but more in the ‘making questionable health and lifestyle choices because it is the newest Organic Idea going around.’ Notable occasions on this list are the time that she filled the brownies with wheat germ and made them crunchy, the time she brought my east-coast-city-child cousins on a camping trip, and the time she got chickens.

Chickens, in and of themselves, are reasonable things to own. Usually. However, my mother wanted them for eggs and began by taking the childhood fort (which most of us had grown out of) and turning it into a chicken coop. By chicken coop, I mean she stuck some boxes in it and put a fence around it, and patched up the hole in the side from A’s Enthusiastic Ninja Punch, and the hole in the other side from C’s Peephole Experiment, and the last hole from my own childhood Cannonball, and both windows, and then got chickens.

My mother is the sort of learner who just starts a project and then learns as she goes. While she knew they needed food and basic heating, she was otherwise a bit naiive.

For example, it turns out L, my sister, is terrified of chickens. My mother apparently didn’t know this (Mom, I don’t like the idea of chickens) until the chickens (Mom, really, do you think we have to have chickens, because they have beaks, and I got pecked once) actually got to the house (OH MY GOD GET IT AWAY. GET. IT. AWAY. GET IT AWAY GET IT OFF GET IT OFF GET IT OFF!!!!).

Additionally, Mom forgot that chickens can fly short distances and the fort has a loft and thus made the interesting mistake of not wiring off the top areas of the roof.  On Day One she had to knock on the neighbour’s door and ask if she could retrieve her chickens from their yard.

Eventually, after many phone calls, Mom got a handle on chicken care - by which I mean she passed the project onto my chicken-enthusiastic younger brother, who adored them. Not only did Mom have chickens, she had Happy Chickens who were more than pleased to make Many Eggs, and the family chowed down happily.

W, my chicken-enthusiastic younger brother, explained chickens to me this way:

Chickens have a hierarchy, so you have to have a rooster. They’ll start pecking each other and it’s a mess, but roosters kinda keep them calm, though roosters can get aggressive if the hierarchy gets disturbed, so you have to keep the roosters calm. This isn’t really hard, except that if you have to have a rooster, you’ve got a chance of eggs getting fertilised, and we want to eat them, so you have to go out and get the eggs every day, unless you want more chickens, and there’s a limit of how many chickens you can have inside city limits.

All of which seems perfectly reasonable, and was perfectly reasonable, until Mom decided to go on a fortnight’s holiday with my younger brothers, including W.

This left L in charge of the chickens.

Now, my mother is not a reasonable person, so if you’re just now wondering why Mom left the chicken-terrified child in charge of the chickens, it’s because mom is either an idiot or an arse. I’ve still not decided to this day which one she is, so we’ll leave it at that. But regardless of Mom’s motivations, my younger sister is now in charge of the chickens. She can’t get within a few yards before wanting to burst into tears, but also has a Big Heart and doesn’t want the chickens to die.

The chickens need to be fed and watered.

According to W, several things had happened when he got home and took charge of ‘his’ chickens again.

  1. On day one, L had attempted to feed the chickens, and upon entering the coop had been met by the Rooster, who, not recognising her, had immediately gone into Protective Mode. L had fled the coop, dropping the food but leaving the door open. This led to L calling the neighbours in a panic asking for a Group Hunt for the Chickens because she was too terrified to round them up out of the yard. A friendly neighbour put the end of the hose into the water trough so L could just turn it on instead of going in.
  2. L had fed the chickens every day by taking a bucket about the right size full of feed and tossing it into the coop. Not just the feed - the whole bucket. W had to pick up 12 different containers because after L ran out of buckets she just started using old yoghurt containers and whatever else she could find. The chickens apparently didn’t mind being bombed with buckets full of food, just ran out of the way and then attacked the containers until they got their due.
  3. L didn’t fetch the eggs, not even once, which meant that now W was a full eight chicks over the city limit, and had to give six more to some friends in the foothills who weren’t in city limits and could have as many chicks as they wanted. He ended up keeping the eight chicks and bargaining with the neighbours that they could have free eggs, provided that if the city Chicken Inspectors came by, the neighbours would tell the Chicken Inspectors that W was just caring for their chickens while they built a new coop or something.

By the time W, L, A, and my mother left to live in Swaziland (another story altogether), my brother had ten chickens over the limit, all extremely pleased and contented with life, until L went Anywhere Near The Coop, at which point they would all start shrieking like the dickens and running out of the way of any impending Food Bombs, except for the Rooster, who would puff up and start attacking the fence in preparation.

Anyway, the point of this story is Don’t Leave L In Charge Of The Chickens, with side morals of Don’t Buy Pets You’re Not Prepared For and Don’t Fuck With Roosters, and also I hope you feel better.

*watching the end of the movie with little brother Oliver*

*it’s wrapping up the the final ‘mystery’s solved, everything’s ok now’ hijinks*

Me: “I like their little jar of cinnamon.”

Oliver: *dies laughing like it’s the funniest thing he’s heard in his entire life*

Help me out here, guys, I’m confused… is having a random jar of TV-watching cinnamon really that funny?

Even a Fish

I noticed there’s not too much stuff about the one pet you are allowed to have besides service animals, so I thought I’d try something?

—-

There is a dorm with a twenty-gallon tank sitting in the corner of the room on the bookshelf. There is an underwater castle, and many plants, lovingly tended. A filter hums away day and night. There is a chunk of driftwood in the tank, picked up from a distant beach that whispered of home. There is a single betta.

The betta is a glossy red. He is old. His name is Daisy.

Fish are not complex animals. They are not like the cats, that can slip between worlds, or the Crows, who see and know all and give favor to those who have gained it. But even a fish cannot avoid being changed, here at Elsewhere.

His person is an artist. She is quick to see the stories in something ordinary, to hear the music in an errant breeze. She is the kind of person who picks up driftwood because it spoke of home, and she is the kind of person who would walk into the forest because it sings of love. A cruel, cold, cutting love, perhaps, but love enough to lure her.

But she does not go.

Daisy sees the way her eyes flick to the window at night, when the moon is new and the snow barely dusts the ground. He hears the longing sigh on her lips when she speaks of the songs no one else can hear. He knows how slowly and reluctantly her feet step over the threshold after classes.

He knows also the thin, sharp faces that look in the window at night from between the curtains, and the whispers that filter through the glass, promises and temptations. The Fae want his person. That much is clear.

But she does not go.

He is fed once a day without fail. She speaks to him as she offers him bloodworms with the same care she leaves offerings for the Fae, unaware or uncaring if he can understand her. She sings to him the songs that she hears outside, and the music sends a shiver through the water of his tank. He flees the coldness that he hears in that tune, and hides behind his plants. She stops, surprised. She leaves him alone.

She does not sing that song again.

The Fae grow restless as the days go by. She does not go to the them - she will not go to them. Daisy sees their eyes at the windows when she is not there, hears the rasp of voices just outside. Somehow he knows that they will have her, that she will go to them, if they must bribe and threat for her.

Somehow he does not want that to happen.

He flirts his tail when she is in the room, pulling her gaze from the trees outside to him. He leaps and splashes in the water, drawing her attention when she seems too enraptured by the music that still sends shivers through the water, that makes the aquarium plants tremble and wilt. She sings to him again, but of safe things. About the warmth of the sun, and the movement of the clouds in the sky.

One day she is late coming home. Daisy stirs the surface of his water into froth, anxious. Then the door opens, and a groundskeeper enters, supporting his person. Her face is pale. Her voice is sore and choked and harsh.

“How did you resist them?” the groundskeeper asks, voice tinged with awe and caution. “I’ve never seen them so enraged. They want more what they can’t have, you know.”

She looks bewildered, as if just realizing where she is. Her gaze focuses on Daisy, and he sways side to side, spreading his tail.

“I - I had to feed my fish,” she manages to get out, still looking confused. “I had to come home.”

The groundskeeper notices Daisy and leans over to see.

“Something to ground you,” they say. “I see.”

She nods. She tries to speak again, but her voice is so shattered it may never heal. The groundskeeper looks at her sympathetically, but can offer nothing to help. Daisy doesn’t care. He flashes his fins and splashes, and she smiles.

She does not go.

x

Keep Your Promises

A/N: Late night smut for you lovelies. Feedback is appreciated. Enjoy. ;) 

He didn’t make it easy for you to leave for work this morning. Giving you soft, wet kisses down your naked collarbone as reasons to stay. His hands not helping as they pull you tighter against him. Bare chest pressed against yours. You know how needy he is when you feel him whispering soft pleas against your skin between every kiss, coaxing you to call in and lay with him for the day. You didn’t wanna go. God you wished you could stay, but you had an important meeting you couldn’t miss.

It’s probably the same reason why he didn’t hesitate to get his hands on you before you could even set your things at the front door. Leading you to the bedroom so he could finally taste what he’s been craving, starving for, all day.

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Out of Context Quotes from My Physics Teacher
  • “I wanna do this fast. It’s not fun going slow, it’s not sex.”
  • “Scalar quantities: They just have a number with no… (mutters to self) rhymes with erection… direction!
  • “It’s like herpes: If you don’t need it, give it back.”
  • “I know you’re asking: Where do I get all my energy? And the answer is: Meds.”
  • “I’m glad Hermione is getting older. I’ve always had a thing for her since she was like (laughs)…six.”
  • “You were lucky enough to see my balls dropping. And if you didn’t, it was pretty cool.”
  • “I actually dressed up as a woman to go to a bachelorette party.”
  • “Gravity goes up and down, bitches.”
  • (My favorite) “Bro-child.”
  • “Oh, and when I say disturbing shit like that, you’re not going home and telling your parents that, right?”
  • He also will give out Jamba Juice gift cards for completion of extra credit problems.
  • “Is this alcohol?” he asks as he brings out a spray bottle with the taped on label ‘denatured alcohol’. Bringing a lighter out of his pocket, he lights it and holds it out of the nozzle before spraying the flame. The flame flares up and burns his hand. “Ow.”

Chickens are wildly individual beings and don’t you dare be fooled for one second into thinking otherwise. When I was a pretty smallish child my parents allowed me, for some unknown reason (they were not responsible adults is probably the reason), to purchase with my own money two bantam chickens from a flea market. I had a little banty rooster named Rocky and a tiny banty hen named Ginger. It was a perfectly lovely arrangement even though I sucked at naming things. I loved those jerks with my whole heart and everyone thought that was adorable.

Now, my grandfather hired a neighborhood man to do a lot of odd jobs. This man was named Stanley and, though I can only think fondly of him, he was personally responsible for a hugely traumatic aspect of my childhood. One day, you see, Stanley arrived with a gift for me. “I hear you like chickens,” he said presenting my family with the most gorgeous animal I had ever seen. A beautiful orangey head fading into iridescent greeny-blue wings, long proud incredibly green tail feathers, red eyes that seemed to glow (soon I would learn this was from the Fires of Hell), and the proudest crown and wattle anyone had ever seen. This rooster was massive too, and not just to someone who is quite bitty, he was a lot of chicken. Now, naturally, I was elated. “Let ‘em out, let ‘em out!” I begged as soon as it seemed remotely appropriate to be a bother. My grandfather, ever indulgent, proceeded to do this. The first act of this new addition to my home, never a safe place but never so dangerous as it would soon become, was to almost murder my grandfather.

You see, what I did not know at the time was that roosters have something called ‘spurs’ which are effectively leg knives. If you are imagining that these cannot possibly be dangerous then I am going to change your imagination. My family, two young children included, gathered around. Soon my pretty new pet would be free to puk and bok about the yard I believed. My grandfather opened the transport cage and everything was, at once, a mass of feathers and blood. Unleashed the chicken lunged instantly for his face and neck. Fortunately he was able to throw up his arms in protection which resulted in a huge gash that must have been bone deep for how it bled. This being of raw malevolence rushed at the assembled crowd causing much screaming and cowardly running. If I am recalling correctly my mother actually scooped up my sister before she fled to the safety of the house. I don’t remember how, or even if, we corralled the devil. But I do know, precisely, my grandfather’s words as he calmly wrapped his bloodied arm in one of the handkerchiefs he was never without, “Mean little bastard, ain’t he?”

The coalesced mass of violence was named. He was called Bully and my entire family has war flashbacks when that profane name is mentioned. My father was Bully’s second victim, his spurs managing to slash through his jeans and cut open his leg nastily. After this event it was not decided that we had to get rid of this monster masquerading as a bird. It was decided, instead, that he was to be de-spurred. For the uninitiated this involves a terrified child holding a ball of raw evil while an adult twists that evil’s most deadly weapons off with a pair of pliers. I am told this process is painless but I regret that it did not inflict that demon with some amount of pain because as soon as I dropped him he hit me full in the chest with an untellable fury and I was crying when I made it to the safety of the house.

Thus began a series of years where outside was a PVP zone. My parents laughed when my sister and I rode bicycles because we were always perused by Bully running full tilt, intent on committing a violence against us. We had a hen house and chicken run built but nothing could fully contain this beast. For years a standard accompaniment to leaving the house was a broom handle. Why? Because there was a likelihood that you were going to be viciously assaulted by the unkindest animal as has ever walked this forsaken earth. Now, whacking a psychopathic rooster with a broom handle does not actually dissuade it from continuing its attack, but it does keep it a distance away from you that you might get to safety. Running was futile and foolish but we resorted to it often. Bully knew the exact time we got home from school. Every day without fail he was in the driveway, waiting. Broom handles became standard equipment in every vehicle. My father would amuse himself by sending his children out to fight the chicken and we would do it because my sister and I have always been desperate for approval. This is one of the rare instances where my mother didn’t even try to stop him. That unholy creature loved sneaking up on her when she was putting clothes on the line and any time a child was battling it was a happy time for her.

I must impress on you, I have no idea why we didn’t get rid of Bully because he terrorized us constantly. Everyone laughed that we were so tormented by a bird. Their laughter ceased the second they set foot on our property and met the hellion in person. Collecting eggs during those years was always met with tears as I trudged to my task and inevitable beating from a rooster. Once Bully got frostbite in his comb and my father carried him lovingly in his arms to get him treatment from the vet. This was a complicated relationship we had with our awful pet. Bully was also, for the record, a serial rapist who would pounce on hens with no warning and not a single one of them ever wanted it. I’ve had other roosters that are flawless gentlemen in this area and have cute courtship dances. Not Bully.

Anyway, one day a man showed up at our house for reasons I don’t recall. My parents were both artists and my dad is constantly into some nonsense or other so it could have been anything really. “Watch out for the-,” one of us began before being cut off by a delighted gasp. This was followed by the elated question, “Is that a fighting rooster?” We confirmed that it absolutely positively definitely was the most fighting anything on this or any other plane. “Oh wow,” the strange man continued with a dreamy smile, “I’ve always wanted one!” Anyway, we gave Bully to him with repeated warnings that this was a terrible mistake he was making. I never saw that man again and to this day I have a sneaking suspicion that Bully was somehow complicit in his undoubtedly bloody death.

Cultural Geography, 7th grade

Cultural Geography (weird name, but we learned about cultures while learning where they were on a map) was probably one of the best classes I’ve ever had. Why? Well, one day, we were learning about how hard it was to build a government. We were given 10 minutes with NO TEACHER GUIDELINES AT ALL. JUST 10 MINUTES OF US LEADING EACH OTHER.

This is what we did.

-Elected a kid (let’s call him Jack) to be in charge. However, everyone knew that he had a thing for Communism and walruses, so he became our dictator.
-Had a vote (before Jack became full-on dictator) and unanimously “executed” the annoying kid in the class (Let’s call him Carl)
-Had a group of girls try to form their own government. Jack got them back with the rest of the class, and those girls became the press for a meeting.
-Jack wanted to invade the class next door, but that fizzled out for some reason.
-Some boy (we shall call him Gerald) asked Jack to be a priest, and became class priest.
-Had another vote and “executed” me.
-Gerald the priest brought me back to life, and I started chasing around Carl, who somehow “came back to life.”
-Jack executed me again.
-And during all this time, this kid (we’re gonna call him Carlos) was known as the vice president of the class, despite our Communistic leader, was shouting that we needed a democracy. Nobody paid attention to him, though.
-I stood on at least 5 separate desks. (I’m under 5 feet, so I take every chance I get)

Needless to say, it was one of the best first period classes I’ve ever had.

Yep, still broke.

So, there’s there’s a large, greedy software company - let’s call them ‘Orrible, since that’s the most printable name we use for them. They actually have reasonably good albeit expensive tech support.

We had a problem with their software and placed a tech call. Because the problem was causing a production outage, we escalated priority - from one business day to 4 hour response. In addition, we set the “continuous coverage” flag.

When the case is flagged for continuous coverage, it’s worked on 7x24. When a support person goes home at the end of the day, he transfers it to another engineer just starting their day.

There’s a catch - if the customer doesn’t update the ticket every eight hours, it drops back to Business Hour handling. On this ticket, my coworker waited 8 ½ hours to update the ticket. It dropped to Business Hours coverage, and he spent a half hour on the phone getting it elevated. That generates a form letter to everyone involved in the contract reminding them that “The ticket must be updated every 8 hours to remain in Continuous Coverage”.

His malicious compliance? He wrote a program that updated the ticket via a web form every 7 hours 58 minutes. The update consisted only of the text “Yep, still broken $date”. The program ran for 3 more days.

Folklore and belief

You bring your beliefs, and your ancestor’s beliefs, with you.

Your parents raised you to believe in a god and a saviour and, to some extent, fate guided by what they hold faith in.

But you don’t believe in anything much these days

You loved fairytales and horror stories as a child, and, as a child, believed some things you knew were nonsense even as you made sure not to dangle your legs in reach of anything under the bed, even if you mentally went through a list of things that would keep werewolves and vampires at bay, even if you went looking for fairies in places that weren’t quite nature and weren’t quite human places.

But you, while not quite an adult, are not a child anymore, not by law, and not in mindset, and don’t believe in anything much these days

You don’t really do superstitions, so the rules don’t make sense to you, but the salt packets are free, so there’s no harm in taking a handful or so, and your roommate does the cream thing.

You think it’s a waste of good milk, but ey, you didn’t pay for it, so it’s not a problem.

You don’t believe in anything much these days, but the fact that the milk, and the cream, and whatever other dairy products are placed at the door are gone each morning, gives you a strange chill that takes a while to dismiss.

Eventually, you just don’t think about it, but…

The coincidences keep stacking, and you don’t believe in anything much these days, not that you know everything, not that the world is safe, not that everything is predictable, not that science has figured out every answer already.

People bring their beliefs, and their ancestor’s beliefs, with them.

You notice. Eventually, you notice.

When your roommate disappears, you take over her habit of leaving dairy at the door.

You’re not the only one who is aware that avoids the water. Others may mutter something about horses, when pressed, but you worry that one day you’ll hear a voice from beneath the waves that will say “here is the place, where is the man?” as a prelude for a disappearance or unlikely drowning. Maybe yours. Maybe some other unlucky soul who’ll get curious, or who’ll, say, lose control of their car and drive into a creek not four feet wide and one foot deep and disappear to nowhere, car and all.

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