The October Game

I’ve decided it’s time for a re-post. It is that time of year.
This short story by Ray Bradbury was written in 1948.
Oddly enough, it seems like something you would see gracing the front pages of today’s morning paper. I’ve decided to re-post this perennial favorite.
Just to warn you, it’s a fairly gruesome tale. Bradbury was so far ahead of his time.
If you haven’t read The October Game and would like to, click on the picture above.
(or HERE)

~m

Lit meme

This was a great meme I saw posted at Interstellar Adventures.
I’m a bit ashamed I haven’t read more of these.
I also feel that Raymond Carver, Ray Bradbury, Russell Banks and Tobias Wolff (for starters) should have been included.
That being said here’s my whimpy list.

Instructions:
Look at the list of books below.
*Bold the ones you’ve read
*Italicize the ones you want to read
*Leave the ones that you aren’t interested in alone.

1.The Da Vinci Code (Dan Brown)
2.Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen)
3.To Kill A Mockingbird (Harper Lee) (alright, slap me for this one)
4.Gone With The Wind (Margaret Mitchell)
5.The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King (Tolkien)
6.The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring (Tolkien)
7.The Lord of the Rings: Two Towers (Tolkien)
8. Anne of Green Gables (L.M. Montgomery)
9. Outlander (Diana Gabaldon)
10.A Fine Balance (Rohinton Mistry)
11.Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Rowling)
12.Angels and Demons (Dan Brown)
13.Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Rowling)
14. A Prayer for Owen Meany (John Irving)
15. Memoirs of a Geisha (Arthur Golden)
16.Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (Rowling)
17. Fall on Your Knees(Ann-Marie MacDonald)
18. The Stand (Stephen King)
19. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban(Rowling)
20. Jane Eyre (Charlotte Bronte)
21.The Hobbit (Tolkien)
22.The Catcher in the Rye (J.D. Salinger)
23.Little Women (Louisa May Alcott)
24. The Lovely Bones (Alice Sebold)
25. Life of Pi (Yann Martel)
26.The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (Douglas Adams) (Gone way too soon)
27. Wuthering Heights (Emily Bronte)
28. The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe (C. S. Lewis)
29. East of Eden (John Steinbeck) (I love Steinbeck, cryptic as he is)
30. Tuesdays with Morrie(Mitch Albom)
31. Dune (Frank Herbert)
32.The Notebook (Nicholas Sparks) (AKA, the story of my mom and dad. mucho tears)
33.Atlas Shrugged (Ayn Rand)
34.1984 (Orwell) (Slap me again)
35. The Mists of Avalon (Marion Zimmer Bradley)
36. The Pillars of the Earth (Ken Follett)
37. The Power of One (Bryce Courtenay)
38. I Know This Much is True(Wally Lamb)(Lamb is totally underrated)
39. The Red Tent (Anita Diamant)
40.The Alchemist (Paulo Coelho)
41. The Clan of the Cave Bear (Jean M. Auel)
42. The Kite Runner (Khaled Hosseini)
43. Confessions of a Shopaholic (Sophie Kinsella)
44. The Five People You Meet In Heaven (Mitch Albom)(Too sappy for me)
45. Bible (parts only)(The book of Job)
46. Anna Karenina (Tolstoy)
47.The Count of Monte Cristo (Alexandre Dumas)
48.Angela’s Ashes (Frank McCourt)
49.The Grapes of Wrath (John Steinbeck)
50.She’s Come Undone (Wally Lamb)
51.The Poisonwood Bible (Barbara Kingsolver)
52. A Tale of Two Cities (Dickens)
53. Ender’s Game (Orson Scott Card)
54.Great Expectations (Dickens)
55.The Great Gatsby (Fitzgerald)
56. The Stone Angel (Margaret Laurence)
57. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Rowling)
58. The Thorn Birds (Colleen McCullough)
59. The Handmaid’s Tale (Margaret Atwood)
60. The Time Traveller’s Wife (Audrew Niffenegger)
61. Crime and Punishment (Fyodor Dostoyevsky)
62.The Fountainhead (Ayn Rand)
63. War and Peace (Tolsoy)
64. Interview With The Vampire (Anne Rice)
65. Fifth Business (Robertson Davis)
66. One Hundred Years Of Solitude (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)
67. The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants (Ann Brashares)
68. Catch-22 (Joseph Heller)
69. Les Miserables (Hugo)
70. The Little Prince (Antoine de Saint-Exupery)
71. Bridget Jones’ Diary (Fielding)
72. Love in the Time of Cholera (Marquez)
73.Shogun (James Clavell)
74. The English Patient (Michael Ondaatje)
75.The Secret Garden (Frances Hodgson Burnett)
76. The Summer Tree (Guy Gavriel Kay)
77. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (Betty Smith)
78.The World According To Garp (John Irving)
79. The Diviners (Margaret Laurence)
80. Charlotte’s Web (E.B. White)
81. Not Wanted On The Voyage (Timothy Findley)
82. Of Mice And Men (Steinbeck)
83. Rebecca (Daphne DuMaurier)
84. Wizard’s First Rule (Terry Goodkind)
85. Emma (Jane Austen)
86. Watership Down(Richard Adams)
87. Brave New World (Aldous Huxley)
88. The Stone Diaries (Carol Shields)
89. Blindness (Jose Saramago)
90. Kane and Abel (Jeffrey Archer)
91. In The Skin Of A Lion (Ondaatje)
92. Lord of the Flies (Golding)
93. The Good Earth(Pearl S. Buck)
94. The Secret Life of Bees (Sue Monk Kidd)
95. The Bourne Identity (Robert Ludlum)
96. The Outsiders (S.E. Hinton)
97. White Oleander (Janet Fitch)
98. A Woman of Substance (Barbara Taylor Bradford)
99. The Celestine Prophecy (James Redfield)
100.Ulysses (James Joyce)

I’m pathetic.

~m

Bad Day

alexander

There was a story I used to like to read to my girls when they were small.
It was called, “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day”.
The story chronicled a day in the life of a little boy named Alexander.
As you may have already figured out, he was experiencing a really rotten day.
He would say to his mother, “This is a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. I think I’ll move to Australia.”

I tell you this for one very simple reason; I can really relate to Alexander today.
Though I can’t figure out exactly when the day entered the ‘suck zone’.
I’ll just say that it did and there was nothing I could do about it.
As adults, we put up with so much Rhinoshit (much larger and exceedingly rank than the traditional bullshit) in our daily lives that I am amazed that more of us aren’t in strait jackets boned up on Oxycontin and drooling at the mouth.
Ah, better living through pharmaceuticals, yes?

It’s a wonder people don’t ‘snap’ more than they already do.
From an angst-filled ride to work and numerous automated phone solicitations (Viva! Las Vegas!) to a bad night’s sleep and a poorly made cup of coffee, our little brains are constantly invaded by a perpetual wave of negativity that has a cumulative effect on the brain—well, my brain anyway.

I’m cynical by nature and have always seen the glass as half empty; it’s just my internal nuts and bolts, I guess. I chalk it up to my “creativity issues“.

I hear you say, “Oh, Michael, you’ve got to be more positive.”
Uh-huh.
And?

It’s hard, if not impossible, to feel positive when you just feel invisible.
Nothing seems to matter.

Maybe it has something to do with the fact that it’s Friday the 13th and my bio-rhythms have gone on vacation to Rio.

I’ll end up like I always do waiting the day out like a bad haircut and go to bed hoping that tomorrow things will look better.
And maybe they will…

At the end of Alexander’s story he finds himself at the end of his rope and says one more time to his mother, “I’m having a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day and no one seems to care. I think I’ll move to Australia.”

His mother gives him a hug and says, “Somedays are like that…even in Australia.”

Sounds like a smart lady to me.

~m