The backyard scientist

March 31, 2013

Like something from a fifties sci-fi movie, his newly completed Synchrotron buzzed and whirred and lurched to life, spinning faster and faster until it glowed as brightly as the sun. Satisfied, he couldn’t quite remember what it could do, but that somehow seemed irrelevant. The main thing was, it worked.



Existentialism and youth

March 30, 2013

“Completely absurd,” she suddenly announced out loud. “What is?” asked her friend. “You know, everything.” “What the hell are you on about?” “Well, despite our insignificance in this hostile, meaningless world, we’re all still free to make our own choices.” “Shut up and watch this cute kitten video, you weirdo.”


Photograph by Kaldari

“Pleased to meet you,” said the charming man, by way of introduction. He was obviously wealthy, with excellent taste. We talked at length about Christianity, Russian history and World War II before I realised he hadn’t told me his name. “You’ll have to guess,” he teased with a devilish grin.


Original image by Good-e-nuf

The stuff of nightmares

March 28, 2013


Having just bought Jessie’s first school shoes I’m now hurrying to leave the busy department store to pick up my older daughter from ballet. “Jessie?” I call gently. She’s probably hiding, she loves this game. “Come on, Jess, we need to go.” Nothing. Oh god. “JESSIE!” “Here I am, mummy.” 


Photograph by silverfox09



Sweet nothings

March 27, 2013

Twenty years ago he gave up the rat race to open an old fashioned sweet shop, though it had played havoc with his teeth. His dentist had little sympathy. “Next,” called the charming dental nurse with a glint in her eye, for she was one of his very best customers.



Original photograph by Pathlost

Power to the people!

March 26, 2013

Politically speaking, the largest-scale problem the UK faces today is the lethargy of its voters. Which isn’t surprising, seeing as the three main parties only ever tell us what they think we want to hear. That’s why we need large-scale intervention. But not from the government – from the people.



** I don’t normally write about politics, but this week’s writing challenge asked for our opinions. I chose to write about the following statement: “Large-scale problems like the obesity crisis won’t be solved without large-scale intervention. Government needs to step in on issues that affect the whole community.” And in only fifty words. For the record, I treated it more as a writing exercise than a soapbox moment. More details of the challenge are here:

The food was excellent and the conversation flowed with the Champagne. Meeting one’s future in-laws for the first time is always fraught with tension, but she felt certain they liked her. “Not exactly marriage material,” announced his father afterwards, “unattractive too,” added his mother. They’d call Gerard in the morning.



If they banned the apostrophe this paragraph would be difficult to comprehend because you wouldnt know if the silk lingerie draped over the passenger seat of my car was my wifes or my girlfriends. Not that the information Ive just given helps much because, quite frankly, I dont know either.



** this is based on the fact that a council in Devon is considering banning apostrophes in road signs to avoid confusion, because people don’t know how to use them correctly. Waterstones (formerly Waterstone’s) the book seller has recently removed its own apostrophe for the same reason.

In pieces

March 23, 2013

My heart sank when I opened the box. It was in hundreds of tiny pieces. A thoughtful birthday gift sent airmail from Australia, I owed it to Great Aunty Mavis to at least try to put it together. And so began the painstaking process of completing the 1000 piece jigsaw. 



My mission began in a high class hotel room. I was woken two days later by a call from MI6 asking why I’d lost contact. Had I been drugged? Then I noticed the open mini bar door and the empty bottles littering the carpet. I have a desk job now.