Saturday, 29 June 2013

The Exclamation Mark

One quiet sunny afternoon a giant exclamation mark appeared suddenly.

At first people laughed and took photos of it with their phones. Later the authorities were called and the exclamation mark was sealed off with police tape and passers by were told to keep back.

News channel helicopters buzzed around the mysterious symbol. 

Attempts were made to reason with the exclamation mark, to find out what it meant, but the punctuation said nothing.

The army was called in and a platoon of tanks surrounded the symbol.

The colonel in charge gave the exclamation mark one more chance but still the giant punctuation failed to explain it's meaning or context.

The colonel ordered his tanks to open fire. The shells bent the exclamation mark until it resembled a question mark.

Everyone felt a lot less worried about a question mark than they had about an exclamation mark and the colonel and his tanks were ordered back to their barracks.

Two months later the top half of the giant punctuation was taken away and used as a slide in a nearby playground. All that was left of the mysterious exclamation mark was what people took to be just a run-of-the-mill full stop which was soon covered over with weeds and completely forgotten. 

Sunday, 23 June 2013

The Screenplay

The screenplay was based on a novel about a character who was writing a short story about a character who was writing a narrative poem about a character who was writing an opera about a character writing another novel. 

It did not get optioned.

Saturday, 15 June 2013

The Unlikely Story

One day during morning break a boy was seen wandering aimlessly in the undergrowth on the wrong side of the school fence. 

The fence was too high for him to have climbed over and the gate was securely locked. The RE teacher, who was on playground duty at the time, asked the boy how it was he had got there.  The boy said that he had absolutely no idea. One moment he was leaning against the fence in the playground with his friends and the next he was on the other side. The RE teacher examined the fence but found nothing untoward.

So the RE teacher, being a trusting soul, took the boy to see the Physics teacher and had him repeat his unlikely story.

'It sounds,' the Physics teacher said after a little thought, 'rather like quantum tunnelling, when a particle tunnels through a barrier that it classically couldn't surmount thanks to Heisenberg's uncertainty principle and probability density. Normally of course that sort of thing would only happen to subatomic particles.'
'Well he is quite short' pointed out the English teacher who was passing by and who, like most English teachers, knew very little about science.   
'Anyway,' went on the Physics teacher, 'the chances of such an event occurring must be, well, at least 200 million billion to one.'

The RE teacher (whose mind contained a host of equally implausible explanations) decided to make nothing of it and the boy, who had simply arrived late to school and had made up the whole story in an attempt to avoid a detention, was free to go.

Sunday, 9 June 2013

The Bicycle

My bicycle's gears are so ingeniously arranged that when I peddle backwards I in fact move forward. This has the comforting psychological effect that no matter where I am actually headed I always feel I am slowly but surely making my way back to where I started from. 

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