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Monday, October 15, 2018

M³ Zeus's Daddy Issues


            So Zeus has daddy issues. Not like how most people have daddy issues. Cronus wants to literally eat Zeus to prevent his wife Rhea from spending any time with the kids. He might also be worried one of them might supplant him as king of the gods.
            Cronus has already done this with all of the other kids, but Rhea pulled a switcheroo when it came to Zeus. She wrapped a rock in a blanket. Cronus fell for it.

Friday, October 12, 2018

F³ A Small Bribe


            The kid was trouble, no doubt about it. He seemed to know just how far to push his mom before real trouble ensued, and she was limited in what she could do to him on the plain. He kicked his legs, thunking them against his own chair instead of the seat in front of him. And, occasionally, he would poke his sister, which would set off a new round of wailing and Mom shushing.
            Amanda, up at the front, chatted with another flight attendant, but had worried eyes and emphatic whispers for our row.
            What am I doing?

Monday, October 8, 2018

M³ UnHEA


            The last story got me thinking about mythology in general, how they don’t end happily ever after (HEA). I’m honoring my promise by not talking specifically about the Levite priest, Gibeah, and the Benjamites. I ended the discussion on Monday by referencing how the Greeks favored tragedies over comedies, so I’ll pick up there.

Friday, October 5, 2018

F³ WIP Bad Memory


            Nikki brought us to a fire door, but the building was so old, any connected alarm had long since been sabotaged by squatters or the criminal element.
            “Now you can dazzle me with your lockpicking skills,” she gestured to the door.
            I shook my head. “Not part of my repertoire.”
            “A pity, you really should expand your horizons, Matthew.”
            “Some of us don’t have hundreds of years to learn new skills. Why don’t you show me.”
            For answer, she grasped the handle and gave it a firm tug, pulling the door open despite the protest of the deadbolt and door frame, which tore apart like aluminum foil. “Sometimes the direct approach is best.”
            That was pretty hot, actually.
            We ghosted inside, Nikki weaving her way through, guided by instinct or supernatural senses. I didn’t like roaming through the warehouse, it brought back memories of another warehouse, not too far from this one, where a vampire named Jared had attacked me.
            I felt a twinge in my right forearm from where he had clamped a hand down on me. Likewise, I was conscious of my left palm. The slice on my hand had healed without a scar, but I still remembered. My heart beat faster as I remembered the panic run to get out, to escape into the sunlight. I had to pull debris onto the path as I ran while cradling my arm and wheezing through bruised ribs.
            “Matthew,” Nikki stopped to whisper, “your heart is beginning to race. It is distracting.”
            “Sorry.”
            Focus, Matt. Thinking about that warehouse will surely get me killed in this one.
            I took a deep breath, banishing the memory.
            Nikki looked at me for a moment, then nodded. I was grateful she didn’t ask me what happened.


Monday, October 1, 2018

M³ Final Thoughts on A Bad Story


            This is it. I won’t be dealing directly with this story any more after this. This might feel like a bit much after I’ve spent so much time on this story, but I think it’s necessary.
            This story is not well-known in the Bible. When you start listing off Bible stories, this one is never on the list.
            At all.

Friday, September 28, 2018

F³ WIP Weird Date


            For a wonder, Nikki was waiting for me in the parking garage by a car. Instead of her usual gowns, she wore pants that hugged her, but did not constrain her, and what looked like bulletproof vest if it had been designed to mold to a woman’s curves like a corset. A black backpack, looking distinctly military, rested on the rear fender of the car.

Monday, September 24, 2018

M³ Foreign Influence


            So, the story is actually over, but we need to deal with this on another level. How did this story come about? What happened to Israel since the time of Joshua that they have changed so much. With Moses and the 10 Commandments, they’re on the verge of becoming a civilization, an empire. They are establishing laws, justice, and identity by the time Moses passes on, and Joshua takes up the reins and actually gets them into the Promised Land. They enjoy prosperity for a time.
            By the time the book of Judges begins, however, the landscape has changed. Israel is an occupied land with Philistine overseers. The Philistines will continue to be there until David is able to oust them, which will take several years.

Friday, September 21, 2018

F³ Not Iron Man


            I rubbed at my temples to clear the last of the guy’s screaming from my mind. He was silent, but not because he had overcome his fear. In fact, he was probably terrified beyond his ability to speak or even scream. I was fine with it.

Monday, September 17, 2018

M³ WHY?!?!?!


            So, when I first became of aware of this story in grad school, my professor asked the entire class a very simple, very crucial question: “Why is this story in the Bible?”

Friday, September 14, 2018

F³ Off With Her Head


            At the forty-five minute mark, hell broke loose in the form of a screaming girl. She drew every eye on the plane, and a flight attendant immediately rushed over. It was the little girl across the aisle from me. The mother was frantically trying to shush her, but she sobbed and wailed, holding most of a doll. The doll was missing her head. The head was in the possession of the boy, who bounced it like a ball from hand to hand until the mother snatched it away from him.
            “Ma’am, is everything all right?” Amanda, the flight attendant I had seen when I boarded, asked. It was a question she was required to ask, bu tit was clear that there was very little a flight attendant could do.
            The mother had stood up and physically separated the two kids by sitting between them. The boy protested to being manhandled by Mom, but she wasn’t having any of it. The girl’s wails became muffled as she climbed up her mother and buried her face in Mom’s blouse.
            “Ma’am, is there anything I can do?” Amanda asked again.
            The mother’s head whipped around, completely startled by Amanda’s presence. “What? Uh, I don’t know. God, I wish my husband was here to help. Tommy, don’t kick the seat!”
            The boy stopped, but he had a look, a look I knew too well. This wasn’t over.

            “And how do you know this?” Nikki interrupted. “I apologize, but you are not exactly up for parenting awards.”
            “Hah! Well, you’re right on that. I know it because I was a boy who grew up and I had a brother who could be a real pain. We fought a lot. We had a flight once to a family reunion. On the flight out we sat as close together as possible to be a family. On the return flight, Paul sat with Dad ten rows away from Ma and I. You can’t lock a couple of boys in a tin can for hours without trouble.”
            “I see.” She smiled into her coffee. “I did not appreciate your propensity for attracting trouble from even an early age. It does much to explain who you are now.”
            “Yeah, well, I notice that my being a trouble magnet brings you by, too.”
            “Oh, but I am not near you because I am trouble, far from it. I simply delight in the excitement generated by its attraction to you.”
            Her smile had become sweet innocence, while my face had become annoyed because she had gotten the better out of that volley.
            “Anyway, the kid was trouble. . . .”