Category Archives: humor

The Journey: Outtakes

Excerpt from my book, ‘Fragments of Fear: Collection‘.

If you haven’t read the rest of The Journey, please go back here and start from the beginning. Many of these scenes will make no sense to you unless you’ve read the enitre story.

Thank you for reading, I hope you enjoyed the stories, but don’t rush off just yet. I have a special treat for you.

As I was writing this story I had some other ideas pop into my head. These ideas didn’t quite fit with the overall tone. So after I finished it I decided to take them and make an outtake reel like you would see on a DVD. With this in mind, I wrote it in script form. I apologize to those who are unfamiliar with reading scripts, but I think you’ll get the gist. This was written just for fun and my hope is that it will be received that way. Enjoy.

Fade In:

EXT. TRAIN STATION

The Conductor is slowly examining the train engine. He walks
around the front, admiring the beauty and power of it when
suddenly he trips over the track and falls flat on his face.
Getting up slowly and dusting himself off.

CONDUCTOR
Nobody saw that, right?

CAMERAMAN ONE
(tries to keep from laughing, but
just can’t hold it together. He
bursts out into hysterical fits of
laughter)

CONDUCTOR
(Glares at cameraman)

CAMERAMAN ONE
(Dies)

Fade out:

Fade in:

INT. TRAIN, CONDUCTOR’S ROOM

The conductor sits in his chair, head resting against the
back, snoring loudly.

CAMERAMAN TWO
(Whispers to the sound man) Is
someone going to wake him up?

SOUND MAN
Not me.

DIRECTOR
I enjoy life too much.

MAKEUP GIRL
Not a chance.

DIRECTOR
(Stares quietly at Conductor) Okay,
that’s lunch.

SOUND MAN
It’s only nine thirty in the
morning.

DIRECTOR
Do you want to tell him that?

SOUND MAN
(Looking thoughtful) You know, now
that I think about it, I am hungry.

Crew quietly file out of the room leaving the conductor
sleeping peacefully.

Fade out:

Fade in:

EXT. STREET, TWILIGHT

An empty mist covered street, along with deserted cars, half
destroyed buildings, and rubble.

SHE
(groaning as she approaches the man
with outstretched arms) Brains!

MAN
(Quickly pulls out a Desert Eagle
fifty caliber pistol, points it at
her head and squeezes the trigger.
Her skull disappears in a shower of
blood) (A beat) Yuck!

Man wipes off his pistol, spins it on his finger and holsters
it while walking away, whistling ‘Bad to the Bone’.

Fade out:

Fade in:

INT. TRAIN, PASSENGER CAR

The Conductor is punching tickets, he has just listened to a
man telling a story.

CONDUCTOR
I hope you don’t think it’s too
forward of me, but I collect
stories and I was intrigued by
yours.

STORYTELLER
Umm … thanks

CONDUCTOR
Would you mind if I wrote it down
in one of my journals?

STORYTELLER
Well, the thing is, it’s not
actually my story. I just told it.

CONDUCTOR
And did you contact the Author to
get permission?

STORYTELLER
Umm … no.

CONDUCTOR
Have you ever heard of copyright
infringement?

STORYTELLER
It’s just a story.

CONDUCTOR
(Looking irritated) Just a story?
Have you ever stopped to think
about all the hard work the author
put into it? The long hours writing
and revising, just so you can come
along and steal his work?

STORYTELLER
(Looking terrified) Not really.

DIRECTOR
Cut!

CONDUCTOR
I’ll be in my trailer. (Disappears)

STORYTELLER
(Dies)

Fade out:

Fade in:

INT. OFFICE

Harold is on the phone with the automated ACME prize comittee.

AUTOMATED VOICE
To confirm your prize, simply press
‘one’ and an operator will assist
you.

HAROLD
(Stares at the phone in disbelief.
He starts hammering on the ‘one’
button.)

AUTOMATED VOICE
Congratulations, we will connect
you with an operator, one moment
please.

HAROLD
(Looking at camera) Umm, I don’t
think that was supposed to happen.
(Glances at script)

Fade out:

Fade in:

INT. CONVENIENCE STORE ON 23RD STREET

Alan has been handed a gun by his so-called friends and sent
to rob the store. He walks up to the counter, then stands
there, looking around as if confused.

ROBBER
(Running into scene, zipping up
pants) Sorry, sorry everyone,
bathroom break.

DIRECTOR
Cut!

ALAN
(Rolls eyes, turns and walks back
to his mark.)

ROBBER
(Looking embarrassed, walks back out
to take his position.)

DIRECTOR
Take two!

Fade out:

Fade in:

EXT. TRAIN STATION

Emily is waiting at the station. She is surrounded by
oppressive silence.

EMILY
(Farts very loudly.)

CAMERAMAN TWO
(Starts laughing.)

SOUND MAN
(Chuckling) It seems we’ve had some
sort of explosion. Effects, did you
set anything off?

EFFECTS MAN
(Rolling on ground, laughing.)

DIRECTOR
Cut!

EMILY
(Looking very red in the face.) I
need a short break. (Walks away)

ENTIRE CREW
(Laughing hysterically)

Fade out:

Fade in:

INT. TRAIN, PASSENGER CAR

Emily has just boarded the train and the conductor is punching
her ticket.

EMILY
Excuse me, you seem familiar, do I
know you?

CONDUCTOR
That’s quite possible young lady.
You seem somewhat familiar to me
as well.

EMILY
Could I trouble you for your name?

CONDUCTOR
No trouble at all, my name is
Death.

EMILY AND CONDUCTOR
(Both looking confused)

A loud train whistle sounds.

CONDUCTOR
Really?

DIRECTOR
Cut! Reset the scene.

CONDUCTOR
Why don’t you just edit the sound
in during post production?

DIRECTOR
(Looking irritated) Who’s directing
this?

CONDUCTOR
(Glares at Director)

DIRECTOR
(Dies)

Fade out:

Fade in:

PRODUCER’S OFFICE

The Conductor is sitting in front of a desk, across from the
producer.

PRODUCER
Listen, I know you’re not used to
working well with others, but
you’ve got to quit killing off my
staff.

CONDUCTOR
(Glares at Producer)

PRODUCER
Now that right there. That’s what
I’m talking about. You don’t want
to hear what I have to say, so
you’re just going to kill me. You
can’t keep doing that.

CONDUCTOR
(Lifting eyebrow) Can’t I?

PRODUCER
Not if you ever want to work in
Hollywood again. You came to me,
remember? You wanted to change your
image, well how are you going to do
that if no one is around to see.
You need to calm down, relax a
little, have fun with it.

CONDUCTOR
I … I’ll try.

PRODUCER
Good, now no more killing, right?

CONDUCTOR
(Hesitates)

PRODUCER
Right?

CONDUCTOR
Okay, no killing.

PRODUCER
Great, now let’s get this train
back on track.

CONDUCTOR
(Stands to leave, turns back and
glares at Producer)

PRODUCER
(Starts to cough) Knock that off!

Fade out:

Fade In:

INT. PRISON

Larry is beginning his rampage of destruction. He has killed
everyone, officers included in this cell block.

LARRY
(Steps over bodies only to find the
main door locked) Hmm… (He turns
back into the room, searching for
something, leans down and takes the
keys from the guard’s lifeless
corpse) Thanks, Leonard.

LEONARD
No problem.

LARRY
(Nearly falls over, not expecting
an answer, then starts to laugh)

CREW
(All laughing as Leonard sits up
and grins at Larry)

DIRECTOR TWO
Cut!

Fade out:

Fade in:

EXT. PRISON ROOF

Lucifer has just revealed his true identity to Larry and told
him of his eternal punishment. The portal to Hell opens and
out of it is heard the song ‘Boogie Nights’ playing loudly.

LUCIFER
(Starts to dance as several
‘spirits’ appear dressed in full
eighties disco outfits)

LARRY
(Starts to dance along with Lucifer
and the spirits)

CREW
(All start to dance)

DIRECTOR TWO
Cut! Cut! Cut!

CAST AND CREW
(Ignore director)

DIRECTOR TWO
(Shruggs his shoulders and starts
to breakdance)

Fade out:

Fade in:

EXT. TRAIN PORCH OF LAST CAR

The conductor stands waiting, anticipating the arrival of his
friend the raven.

RAVEN
(Flies in and overshoots the
railing, slamming hard into the
door)

CONDUCTOR
(Cringes) That’s gotta hurt.

CAMERAMAN TWO
(Chuckles)

DIRECTOR TWO
Cut! Take two!

RAVEN
(Flies in, but is caught in a
sudden updraft and sails right over
the train)

CONDUCTOR
(Looks up, trying to find the
raven)

DIRECTOR TWO
Cut! Take three!

RAVEN
(Flies in, trying to get his
landing just right, tucks his wings
too soon and drops like a stone)

CONDUCTOR
(Watches as raven tumbles along the
railroad track, leaving a trail of
feathers behind him)

DIRECTOR TWO
Cut! Take four!

An hour later, the raven still has not landed on his mark.
Cast and crew are becoming irritated.

CONDUCTOR
(Whispers to raven) Get this right
or I’ll kill you.

RAVEN
(Flies in and lands his mark
perfectly)

CONDUCTOR
(Looks over at Director two and
nods his head just slightly)

DIRECTOR TWO
(Nods back)

Fade out:

Fade in:

INT. TRAIN. PASSENGER CAR

Emily screams, the conductor runs inside to see what is wrong.

CONDUCTOR
What happened?

EMILY
I had this incredibly vivid
nightmare.

CONDUCTOR
Can you tell me about it?

EMILY
I don’t know. It was so horrifying.

CONDUCTOR
Go on …

EMILY
I dreamt that Barak Obama was
elected President.

CAST AND CREW
(All groan)

EMILY
What? I’m the only one who’s not
allowed to crack a joke?

DIRECTOR TWO
Cut! That’s lunch.

Fade out:

Fade in:

EXT. PARK.

Emily is jogging through the park. The stranger is stalking
her.

EMILY
(Glances back to see if the
stranger is following. Her feet get
tangled up and she falls hard to
the asphalt path)

STRANGER
(Runs up to check on her, sees she
is dazed and bleeding) We need a
medic over here!

EMILY
(Still trying to focus, sits up at
the stranger’s urging)

STRANGER
How many fingers am I holding up?

EMILY
Thursday.

CREW
(Gently places Emily in Ambulance)

Fade out:

Fade in:

INT. TRAIN DINING CAR.

The passengers are sitting down having drinks. Passenger one
looks over at the conductor.

PASSENGER ONE
So what’s your story?

CONDUCTOR
Me? You wouldn’t find my life very
interesting.

PASSENGER ONE
Why not? Everyone else has told you
stories, why don’t you tell us
yours?

CONDUCTOR
Very well, but don’t blame me if
you’re soon bored to death.

PASSENGER ONE
I think anything is better than
sleeping on a train.

CONDUCTOR
Well, long ago I started out as a
Gigolo. I soon came to realize
that my true talents were in
pimping.

PASSENGER ONE
(Trying to keep a straight face)
Really?

CONDUCTOR
(Without missing a beat, reaches
under the table, pulls out a
shockingly pink hat with a two foot
long feather attached to it, puts
it on his head, and flashes the
‘peace’ sign.)

CAST AND CREW
(Erupt with laughter)

Fade out:

 

Fade In:

 

INT. TRAIN. DINING CAR.

 

The conductor is telling the passengers the story of his

early career.

 

PASSENGER

So, a hit man just walked up and

rang the doorbell?

 

CONDUCTOR

Essentially, yes.

 

PASSENGER

What did you do?

 

CONDUCTOR

The only thing I could.

 

PASSENGER

Run?

 

CONDUCTOR

No. I grabbed the biggest freakin’

handgun I could find and blew that

bastard away.

 

DIRECTOR

Cut! (To conductor) Take five,

Dirty Harry.

 

Fade out:

 

Fade in:

 

EXT. TRAIL

 

The conductor leads the passengers down a dark path made of

intricate stone. Gas lamps light the way, but the light

doesn’t extend outside the path. Suddenly, out of nowhere

they come across a large set of beautiful brass doors. The

sign on them says, ‘Out of order’.

 

CONDUCTOR

(Pulling on the doors, finds them

locked)

 

The camera starts to shake as cameraman two chuckles.

 

CONDUCTOR

(To cameraman two) Very nice, very

mature.

 

CREW

(All laugh)

 

DIRECTOR TWO

(Chuckling) No, go with it. How

does this make you feel? Show me

your innermost angst.

 

CONDUCTOR

I’ll be in my trailer. (Walks away

with a slight grin on his face)

 

Fade out:

 

Fade in:

 

INT. LARGE BUILDING.

 

The conductor heaves open the massive door and beckons the

passengers inside. Two large women stand just inside the

entrance.

 

WOMAN ONE

Welcome, welcome, please step

forward and make yourself at home.

 

WOMAN TWO

Don’t forget to take a number.

(She indicates a ticket machine

that automatically shoots out a

ticket.)

 

PASSENGER ONE

(Reads ticket aloud) number

267,408?

 

WOMAN TWO

That’s right.

 

PASSENGER ONE

(Looks up at the electronic sign

that says ‘Now serving # 17’)

What is this, Beetlejuice?

 

Fade out:

 

Fade in:

 

INT. LARGE BUILDING.

 

Emily looks down at her ticket, it says, ‘If you can read

this, you’re too close.’

 

Emily looks down at her ticket, it says, ‘Good for one free

slushie at participating gas-n-gulps.’

 

Emily looks down at her ticket, it says, ‘Don’t forget to

tip your waitress.’

 

Fade in:

 

INT. LARGE BUILDING.

 

The passengers have settled into a routine of slow forward

progress through the line.

 

PASSENGER ONE

Finally, we’re close enough to

watch what really goes on.

 

SAINT PETER

(To person in line) It says here

that you were a liberal member of

the news media.

 

PERSON IN LINE

Yes, that’s right.

 

SAINT PETER

(Pulls a lever and a trap door

opens beneath the person)

Next!

 

Fade out:

 

Fade in:

 

EXT. STUDIO LOT. CONDUCTOR’S TRAILER

 

The conductor steps out of his trailer, now dressed in his

familiar black robe, carrying his scythe.

 

CONDUCTOR

Ahh, it feels better to be back in

normal clothes.

 

DIRECTOR TWO

(Waves to the conductor as he

walks to his car.)

 

CONDUCTOR

I’ll see you soon.

 

DIRECTOR TWO

(Backs away from his car) I think

I’ll take the bus.

 

CONDUCTOR

(Smiles) Suit yourself.

 

DIRECTOR TWO

(Looks at bus stop) Maybe I’ll

walk.

 

CONDUCTOR

Probably a good idea. (Chuckles)

 

DIRECTOR TWO

Stop that!

 

CONDUCTOR

(Walks over and puts his arm

around Director two)   Come on,

I’ll give you a ride.

 

DIRECTOR TWO

Thanks.

 

CONDUCTOR

(Looks back at camera and smiles.)

 

RAVEN

(Flys up and lands on the

Conductor’s shoulder, taping a

sign to his back that says, ‘Kick

me … if you dare’.)

 

Fade out:

 

My not so perfect day


I must admit that there are times when I’m just downright stupid.

I was waiting for 8-21-17 ever since I first heard about the solar eclipse over a year ago. Now in all that time, you would think that a smart person would’ve looked into how to properly take a picture of the upcoming solar eclipse. I will take this time to refer back to my opening sentence.

I had a full year to prepare. Did I do it? No. I planned on going to South Carolina for the event. At least I didn’t do that.

So let’s investigate why my declaration of dumbness is so apt. Back in 2014 I witnessed a partial solar eclipse at nearly the same place as this year. On that occasion, I was able to get plenty of good pictures and even a video that I’ve posted on youtube. So, in my mind, I should do things the same way as I did then and everything would be hunky-dory, right?

This was my stubborn pride killing off brain cells like the black plague.

The problem was, I didn’t compare the circumstances between events. In 2014, the eclipse didn’t start until nearly sundown. All of that atmosphere blocked much of the sunlight, allowing me to take pictures with reckless impunity. Whereas this year, the sun was high in the sky, with nothing to block the brightness except a stray cloud or two.

My cameras and I weren’t happy.

As I sat watching this awesome sight through my cardboard glasses, an impotent rage was welling within me at my helplessness. I tried with every camera I had brought, but none of the pictures were holding a candle to the sight of the sun through my glasses.

In sheer desperation, I cut the lens out of my extra set of glasses and taped it to the lens of my video camera. It wasn’t perfect, but it was good enough to consider the trip, not a total failure.

So what did I learn from my brush with defeat?

Knowledge is out there for a reason. Use it.

Hopefully, I’ll do better in seven years when the sun’s shadow passes by again.

The Test

I love these new motion sensor sinks they have in Walmart, Mcdonalds, and virtually every other public place.

Have you seen these? They’re amazing. They give IQ tests on the spot. I’ll bet you’re thinking, I haven’t seen any that do that. 

I’m sure you have, if you paid close attention.

Here, I’ll demonstrate. I’ll hover over here in the corner of the men’s room and try to look inconspicous. (Because hanging around in the corner of a men’s room doesn’t draw any suspicion, does it?)

Ok, here comes my first victim, I mean subject. He’s approaching the sink, hands out, and nothing happens. So, he pulls his hands back then puts them back under, giving it the, ‘Try again’. This time water flows and the man leaves happy.

Next guy holds his hand under, and recieving no water, passes his hand back and forth under the faucet, giving it, ‘The wave’. This yields water, permitting him to leave.

Next, an older gentleman approaches, stops cold, and stares blankly at the sink with no handles. He shakes his head and walks away, giving the, ‘What’s this world coming to?’

By this time the faucet has become bored and decides to play a prank.

Its victim approaches, hands outstretched. Nothing happens. He does the, ‘Try again’, ‘The wave’, ‘The touch’ (self explanatoty), then turns and gives me the, ‘What the hell’s going on?’

I’m too busy looking inconspicous to do any more than shrug.

He leans over the sink and looks into the faucet (presumably to see if anything’s stuck in there) and is rewarded with an impromptu shower.

He wheels around on me, but I’m too busy inconspicousing (Google it) to make eye contact.

He trudges out, still dripping.

I approach the sink, stop two feet away, fold my arms, and stand still as a statue.

For five minutes, I don’t move.

Three people come in then quickly leave rather than disturb the crazy man who is locked in a staredown with a sink.

At last, the water turns on.

I approach with a smug smile and enjoy my victory wash … for about a nanosecond before screaming in pain at the scalding water.

The water stays on for a few seconds, teasing me.

I hang my head and quietly leave.

I’ve failed the test.

Death by blog

My mind is trying to kill me.

Have you ever had one of those nights/mornings? You wake up around 2 AM or so, go to the bathroom, come back to bed and look at the time. Realizing that you have another 2 hours to sleep, you settle in. That’s when your mind kicks in and sends you great ideas.

Now, I’ve been a writer for years. I know that when your mind sends you creative messages, you’d best listen. I started mentally taking notes on what my mind was sending me and logging it for the upcoming morning writing session.

My mind wasn’t satisfied with that. It flooded me with ideas for my next several blog posts. I fought it off for a while, hoping to get a little more sleep.

An hour later, I gave up and got up. With all the stealth I could muster (for a large, overweight, man of forty something) I carefully got out of bed, snuck over to my desk, avoiding the dark minefield of dressers, bedframes, and all other dangers that jump out and attack helpless toes in a dark room. I unplugged my laptop, making sure that all wires were removed from the various ports, and began my journey toward my writing room (which is any room where I won’t wake someone up. It usually ends up being the bathroom.) with the Mission Impossible theme music playing quietly in my head.

I reached my destination, settled in and began to regurgitate onto the screen what my mind had been nagging me about. (How’s that for some writing imagery?) An hour later I had one post done, another underway, and several other notes typed out, when the alarm on my phone rang. (I learned this lesson the hard way. Take your alarm with you when you do these early morning writing sessions.)

So now here I sit, not completely exhausted, but not well rested either, knowing I have a fourteen hour work day ahead of me. I feel great for having been inspired to write, and to be able to get said inspiration down in my computer, but I have to wonder.

Could my mind really be trying to kill me? Could this be suicide by blog?

No, my mind answered, don’t be ridiculous. Now get to work on your next post.

 

 

The adventures of Captain Obvious

 

nikon d3300 6-10-17 588copy

Quick question; What’s 2+2=? It’s four, right? And What happens if you put your hand on a hot stove? You burn your hand and dance around making up new and colorful words that will get you grounded for weeks, right? Now, here comes the tough one; What’s a red light mean? Anybody? It means stop, that’s right. Not only does it mean stop, it means stay there until the nice green light tells you to go.

Posting a sign like this is equivalent to someone reminding you to breathe. It’s pretty basic stuff we all learned as kids. Red means stop, green means go, yellow means floor it and try to beat the red.

I was pretty sure they covered this on the driver’s exam. Of course, that was quite a few years ago. Maybe they’ve changed it since then.

Until next time, Captain Obvious signing off.

 

That guy

So I’m out on a nice shopping trip with my family when ‘The Urge’ hits me. You know the urge, the one where you turn on your radar and immediately track down the nearest bathroom.

I politely excuse myself because I don’t want to come right out and say that there is about to be an emergency cleanup on aisles five and six if I don’t get to a bathroom, right now!

I find the bathroom. It has only one stall and, miracle of miracles, it is open. It’s even one of the huge stalls that are bigger than some peoples apartments.

I settle in to do my business, pull out my phone, and click on WordPress. (Sorry fellow bloggers, the porcelain throne is where I do a considerable amount of my reading and writing. Now you know. Have fun with that mental image.)

I’m just settling into a groove when I hear the door open. Footsteps tromp right up to the door and rattle it.

I’m sorry, since when did a, ‘closed and locked from the inside’, door mean, ‘Maybe if I shake it hard enough it will fly open’? 

“Occupied.” Is what I said.

Silence.

Loud, audible sigh.

Sorry bud, that doesn’t work for my wife, it ain’t workin’ for you.

I try to settle back in to the post I’m reading when the water in the sink starts running, followed by eight hundred paper towels being loudly pulled out of the dispenser, followed by pacing, followed by tapping feet.

What are you, five years old?

Of course, by now my concentration is gone. What was going to be a nice little vacation from reality turned into the pee-pee dance in romper room. (Ten bonus points if you have ever put your face up to a tennis racket and said, “And I see Bobby, and Suzie, and…”)

You win. I’m out.

I finish my business, open the door and I give this dude the guy nod, followed by the quick visual sizing up. He does the same in return.

From this point on our relationship changes. Our guy radar has downloaded a new threat matrix. He becomes Captain Impatient, and I become Professor Toilethogger.

Throughout the rest of our shopping trip we play a game of spy vs spy. Every time we see each other, the eyes narrow in recognition of our nemesis. We each lean over to our spouses and say, “There he is, that guy.”

But they are too busy spending our life savings on necessities like hair coloring to see how serious this is.
Even after I leave the store, I spot him walking across the parking lot and my radar is locked on, ‘Intimidating glare’. I spot him other stores as well.

I see you eyeing up the restroom sign. You really didn’t have to go last time, did you?

He’s in line in front of me at the burger drive thru.

Clever way to stalk your prey, by pretending to be oblivious of him.

Finally, he disappears into a crowded street as our shopping trip ends. My wife asks if everyone had a good day. I smile and nod in a placating way, knowing that out there, somewhere, lurks, ‘That guy’.

 

Judgement

I’m driving home from work the other day and need to stop at the local Mom&Pop store to pick up a few things. After procuring my supplies I get back in the car to finish the trip to my sanctuary that I call ‘home‘.

I stop at a red light, glance across the intersection, and see an older woman lower her car window. Her little dog (I think it was a Pomeranian or some other such tiny dog that looks like it was designed by a deranged toymaker) nearly jumps out of the window as the woman turns toward me.

My first thought is: What an idiot! She’s going to kill someone while trying to keep that dog from jumping out of the window.

I shake my head at the general insanity of some drivers, when suddenly she stops beside me, blocking the street. Not sure what to think, I hesitate.

Has this woman somehow read my mind and is stopping to give me a piece of hers?

Am I about to be the world’s first victim of a ninety year old carjacker?

I roll down my window.

She smiles and says, “You forgot your tea.”

How does she know anything about me? I’ve never seen this woman before. Is she some sort of weird psychic?

She points to the roof of my car.

I jump out and there on the roof sits a gallon of tea that I had bought a half a mile ago and set it on the roof to get my keys out.

Grabbing the tea, I smile and say, “Thank you,” then hop back into the car all before the light turns. She smiles back and drives away. The light turns green. I press the gas pedal and slink away like a dog with his tail between his legs.

Lessons learned:

Don’t judge by appearances.
Understanding goes a long way.
Not everyone in this world is an idiot.
Check the roof of your car before you drive away.
Every time you think someone’s an idiot, remember this story.

I’m going to go sit in my corner now.